OS X is a Teenager

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OS X is a Teenager

Happy XIV Birthday OS X!

Mac OS X v10.0 "Cheetah"

Fourteen years ago today, was the launch date for Mac OS X 10.0. The code name, which Apple has been emphasizing more than the numerical numbering of the OS since the launch of “Jaguar” Mac OS 10.2 in September of 2002, was “Cheetah.”

My personal story with Mac OS X 10.0 started on the Monday night a week earlier, but why requires some further explanation. A few years before I started representing Apple (this was years before the Apple Stores) by working events call “Apple Demo Days.” These events were run by an outside company that Apple hired to get Mac enthusiasts to work in a local Computerware or Fry’s Electronics stores and demo new Apple hardware or software. The first one of these I worked was for the new iMac in August of 1998.

Apple invited a group of us “Demo Days” people down to their Cupertino main headquarters to demonstrate the new OS and even gave us a copy to install on our own Macs and use during the week leading up to the launch. It was quite amusing to read the rumor sites that week talking about the new OS and how it worked or features they thought it would have while I was actually using it. I know developers are able to do this all the time, but for me, your average user, this was quite an exciting time.

I worked a little too hard preparing myself for the big day, caught a cold and subsequently lost my voice. The morning of the 24th, I clearly remember drinking this foul cold medicine as I left the house in hopes that I could make it through the day doing nothing but talking. I managed, but people had to huddle close to hear my low raspy voice.

I worked at a place I was very familiar with, the Dublin, California Computerware store. I had spent many of Sunday afternoons roaming around this huge store dedicated to everything Apple and Macintosh. The people that worked there were friendly, offered in-store service and a giant selection of hardware, software, cables and accessories. Computerware was the “Apple Store” before the Apple Stores.

I had a blast working that day, despite not being able to talk very loudly. I learned that no matter how much I thought I knew about this new Apple OS there were questions I was not able to answer. It was also very apparent that Mac OS X was something familiar but clearly something very different. It was not just an upgrade from Mac OS or “System” 9, but a whole new OS that was going to take years to grow up and mature.

It was a hell of a start and 14 years in, now at version 10.10 or "Yosemite" the Mac is stronger than ever!

Make sure to share your personal story with OS X in the comments below and to read more about that day and to learn more, check out the following links:
Apple's Press Release
arstechnica review
Wikipedia - Mac OS X v10.0

Correction: Post was updated to reflect that March 24, 2015 is actually OS X's 14th Birthday. #mathishard

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What's on your Dock?

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What's on your Dock?

Dock System Preference

In response to Einar Wahlstøm, a member of the Apple for Architects Google+ Community, post about his OS X Dock, this update will detail what's on my Dock. If you would like to share your Dock with the Community, either comment on this post or join the Apple for Architects Google+ Community and post there.

First there is the location. I know it looks good, centered on the bottom, but my 24-inch iMac screen is wider than taller, so the only placement for me is on the far right.

Finder
Safari
Mail
Contacts
Calendar
Reminders - How I track everything I need to do.
Notes - For quick notes, serial numbers or settings I never can remember.

(I use Apple's Contacts, Calendar, Reminders & Notes as they sync via iCloud between all my Apple devices.)

Maps - Useful for looking up directions to client's residences or project sites and sending those to my iPhone.
Messages
Skype - For recording Archispeak
Twitter
TweetDeck - For when I need to schedule tweets.
Leaf - A good OS X RSS reader. (How I keep up on Architecture & Mac news.)
Pages - All correspondence, contracts, memos & invoices.
Numbers - Time & Expense Reports.
Quicken 2015 - Personal and Business accounting.
Evernote - Mostly for web clippings.

Vectorworks 2015 - My main CAD/BIM production tool.
AutoCAD for Mac LT 2015 - For consulting CAD work.
SketchUp - A teaser icon. I keep telling myself I'll eventually learn how to use it.
Parallels Desktop - For access to the one Windows based program, Comicbase, which catalogs and tracks all my comic books.
Neat - Paperless Office database and interface for my Neat Document Scanner.

iPhoto - Still my main photo organization and manipulation app.
iTunes
iBooks - I don't read books on my iMac, so I don't know why I keep it there.
App Store
System Preferences
Downloads Folder
- Alias
Trash

 

I use more then just the apps mentioned above. Some that could be there are:
1Password - A must have app for saving multiple and complex passwords.
Adobe Photoshop CS6
Backblaze (Perhaps this will go in another post about the Menu Bar.)
Carbon Copy Cloner 
Dropbox
Chrome - For those times when I'm forced to access a website that uses Flash. Note: Flash is not installed on any of my Macs, nor is Java, which is why I choose Backblaze for online backup.)
Image Capture - For accessing my HP Officejet scanner and capturing site photos from my iPhone.
Merlin - A Mac based, Microsoft Project, style scheduling app.
SpamSieve - An absolute must have Mail add-on app.
TextExpander - Another must have app. It makes typing must quicker by inserting "snippets" of predefined text into emails and other correspondence.

Now it is your turn. What's on your Dock?

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Apple Event - Spring 2015

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Apple Event - Spring 2015

Image courtesy of Apple, Inc., All rights reserved.

Apple's "Spring Forward" Special Event is happening today at 10am PDT, where they are expected to provide details on the upcoming Apple Watch.

Architects, are you interested in getting one of the new Apple watches? Take the poll over at the Apple for Architects Google + Community and share your thoughts in the comments.

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Apple's New Theater

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Apple's New Theater

Apple new corporate headquarters is currently under construction in Cupertino, California. A part of that new headquarters is a new theater that Apple will presumably will hold future Apple Events at. Bryan Chaffin in a story on The Mac Observer details information uncovered, through the building permits filled with the City of Cupertino, that Apple will be spending $161 million just for the theater inside the new headquarters.

There are no details on the size of the theater, so it is impossible to calculate the cost per square foot, but $161 is a whole lot of money to spend on a theater. Keep in mind, this is only one part of a massive corporate headquarters.

Perhaps some Apple for Architects readers can speculate on how Apple could be spending this $161 just for a theater?

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Best Mac Mouse for CAD

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Best Mac Mouse for CAD

A reader recently sent in a question asking, "What's the best Mac mouse for AutoCAD LT 2015?" Specifically, the reader questioned if a two-button with scroll wheel mouse is required or if Apple's Magic Mouse would work?

The good news is that Autodesk engineered AutoCAD for Mac to work with Apple's Magic Mouse. In addition, the Magic Mouse can be configured as a two-button mouse, and using gestures, can act as if it has a scroll wheel. While this sounds good, in my experience I have found the Magic Mouse difficult to use as a control device for CAD.

What I recommend is Apple's older and still available, though only as a wired model Mighty, I mean Apple Mouse. I use it in combination with Apple's Magic Trackpad. The Trackpad provides gesture control for OS X and the Apple Mouse, gives me the more precise control that CAD requires.

Some have complained about the small Scroll Ball failing after a short period of use. I have experienced this problem as well, though with a little rubbing alcohol and a lint free cloth, this can be solved. See this and some other solutions at iFixit.

I'm sure there are other mice out there that are favorites, so please leave your suggestions in the comments.

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The Best CAD/BIM Software for Mac

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The Best CAD/BIM Software for Mac

As a Mac user there once were few choices when it came to CAD/BIM applications. With Apple's popularity, more and more formerly Windows only CAD apps are finding their way back to the Mac. The big fish in the pond of CAD for Mac is Autodesk with their AutoCAD for Mac, which after a 17 year gap, came back to the Mac in 2011. Recently joining this surge was BricsCAD (See New CAD + BIM Options for Mac).

But the question remains, what's the best CAD/BIM software for the Mac? Well, the team over at MacHow2 has compiled a comprehensive list, with detailed explanations for each option that will help you define what your needs are and select the application that will best fit those needs. Check out their excellent summary of "The Best CAD Software for Mac" post.

To continue the conversation, join the Apple for Architects Google+ Community for help from those that use many of these applications.

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New CAD + BIM Options for Mac

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New CAD + BIM Options for Mac

Having options is a good thing and until not that long ago there were few CAD or BIM options for Mac using Architects. Recently two new, traditionally Windows based programs, have been released with support for the Mac.

DeltaCad is a basic, easy to learn CAD program that can produce accurately scaled architectural or mechanical drawings. You can edit, scale, move, rotate, copy, etc. individual objects and it allows you to zoom in to draw fine details or zoom out to see the whole drawing. Learn more at DeltaCAD.

The other new Mac entry is BricsCAD. BricsCAD V15 for OS X offers 3D direct modeling with advanced 2D design. The new version offers cross-platform licensing, a familiar user interface, 3D direct and parametric modeling, Building Information Modeling (BIM), and 3D data exchange. All stored in standard .dwg files. Read a through review of Bricsys new BricsCAD for Mac over at Architosh.

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Vectorworks Cyber Monday Deals

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Vectorworks Cyber Monday Deals

Today, December 1, 2014 is "Cyber Monday" where many deals can be had online. For those interested in purchasing or just upgrading their existing license to Vectorworks, today is the day.

Over at Novedge, they are offering a Vectorworks license bundled with a new 2-Year Subscription to VSS (Vectorworks Service Select) to receive a 50% discount on the license. If you are already have Vectorworks 2014 and want to upgrade to 2015, they are offering the same 50% discount when you purchase the Vectorworks upgrade bundled with a new 2-Year Subscription to VSS (Vectorworks Service Select) where you will get the upgrade free of charge.

Rarely do you find this steep of a discount on Vectorworks, so if you have been considering purchasing or upgrading, contact Novedge today before 9PM EST.

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Apple Campus 2 Construction Update

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Apple Campus 2 Construction Update

The City of Cupertino, California has updated their Apple Campus 2 site that tracks specific construction impacts. In this update they also including a new arial photo of the site and a construction schedule.

For more information about the project, visiting the City of Cupertino's Apple Campus 2 project site.

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