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Headshot of MakeUseOf Writer, Simon Slangen

Simon Slangen

/ Joined 10 June, 2008

I'm a writer and computer sciences student from Belgium. You can always do me a favor with a good article idea, book recommendation, or recipe idea.

312 Articles
694 Comments
3 Tips To Make Skype More Enjoyable [Mac]

Mac

3 Tips To Make Skype More Enjoyable [Mac]

Skype, in terms of software design, continues to baffle me. It’s beautifully designed, and most of the time it’s also charmingly easy to use, but once in a blue moon you discover these little quirks that rain on your Skype parade. It may be how the application masterfully ignores basic interface guidelines. Here are some three very basic tips to make your Skype experience on Mac OS X a more enjoyable one.

13-08-2012
3 Tips To Make Skype More Enjoyable [Mac]
4 Cool Things You Can Do With The Mac Terminal

Mac

4 Cool Things You Can Do With The Mac Terminal

The Terminal is the Mac OS X analogue of the Windows command prompt, or CMD. It’s a tool, as you probably already know, that allows you to control your computer using text commands, as opposed to a graphical user-interface. Although using the Terminal can seem a little daunting at first, it will pay off to get familiar with it.

13-08-2012
4 Cool Things You Can Do With The Mac Terminal
Manage Mac OS X Icons & Themes For Free With iCondubber

Mac

Manage Mac OS X Icons & Themes For Free With iCondubber

Mac OS X is already a very beautiful operating system. Perhaps that’s why it’s so hard to customize its interface elements, especially compared to other operating systems. It’s easy to understand where they’re coming from, if you want to keep the average Mac computer from looking like one of the old MySpace profiles. On the other hand, sometimes it’s nice to be able to put your own touch on the look of your computer.

06-08-2012
Manage Mac OS X Icons & Themes For Free With iCondubber
How To Share Screens Using Applications That Are Already On Your Mac [OSX]

Mac

How To Share Screens Using Applications That Are Already On Your Mac [OSX]

Working together on a project for work or school, looking at a computer screen over someone’s shoulder can grow tiring very quickly. The same goes for trying to help someone with their computer. If we’re only talking about a minute or two, you can take a breath and get it over with, but for longer timespans it might pay off to look into alternatives.

30-07-2012
How To Share Screens Using Applications That Are Already On Your Mac [OSX]
Invigorating Tower Defense Fun with Radiant Defense [Mac]

-HIDDEN

Invigorating Tower Defense Fun with Radiant Defense [Mac]

Big gaming blockbusters with guns a’blazing are great fun, but sometimes you need a simple, fun game to unload or to play when you’re on the go. For those situations, a good tower defense game is the perfect candidate. You’ve probably had some fun with tower defense games in the past, strategic placement of jaw-dropping, automated weaponry intended to stop a continuous stream of bad guys.

23-07-2012
Invigorating Tower Defense Fun with Radiant Defense [Mac]
3 Useful And Free iPad Apps For Starting Musicians

iPhone and iPad

3 Useful And Free iPad Apps For Starting Musicians

Learning to play an instrument can be pretty hard, but it’s never too late to get started. At these times, the best way to keep going is to facilitate those engagements; make them accessible and fun. One way to do that is to make use of modern technology. In this article, we’ll be looking at iPad applications that are aimed at starting musicians.

23-07-2012
3 Useful And Free iPad Apps For Starting Musicians
InSync Is Google Drive For Power Users

Internet

InSync Is Google Drive For Power Users

Dropbox has long been considered the main player in cloud data synchronization, but services like Google Drive and Microsoft’s SkyDrive are busy making a comeback. With a big and familiar user base, and more competitive pricing, it’ll be hard on Dropbox to maintain its current position in the market. Personally, I’ve always been a Google fanboy, so when Google Docs changed into Google Drive, I was naturally very excited.

16-07-2012
InSync Is Google Drive For Power Users
3 Tools To Unleash Your Mac OS X Menu Bar

Mac

3 Tools To Unleash Your Mac OS X Menu Bar

The menu bar on my Mac gets more attention these days than the Dock. The reason for this is quite simple – it’s incredibly compact and dynamic in comparison. One menu bar application will show you an unread count of your email inbox, but remain unobtrusive. That application is accompanied by numerous useful tools and system settings that are within easy reach without taking up a lot of screen real-estate.

16-07-2012
3 Tools To Unleash Your Mac OS X Menu Bar
How To Securely Wipe A Hard Drive [Mac OS X]

Mac

How To Securely Wipe A Hard Drive [Mac OS X]

The new MacBook lineup is upon us, and the hardware is delicious, albeit with a hefty price tag. Perhaps you’ll use this chance to get a new computer. Since Mac computers have great resell value, you’ll want to put your current computer back on the market.

However, before you hand over your laptop to a complete stranger, you’ll want to make sure it’s been scrubbed clean of all personal and confidential files.

09-07-2012
How To Securely Wipe A Hard Drive [Mac OS X]
5 Initially Premium MMO Games That Are Now Free To Play [MUO Gaming]

Gaming

5 Initially Premium MMO Games That Are Now Free To Play [MUO Gaming]

It’s hard to say where the gaming industry is heading, but freemium games are likely playing a big part in it. Where traditional games ask for your sixty dollars up front, freemium games take their cut through micro-payment, and advertising systems. It’s shown to be a popular business model, and although the overall quality of these games is not always on par with their big-budget counterparts, they’re quickly catching up.

02-07-2012
5 Initially Premium MMO Games That Are Now Free To Play [MUO Gaming]
Circumvent Social Reader Applications With Unsocialize [Chrome & Firefox]

Browsers

Circumvent Social Reader Applications With Unsocialize [Chrome & Firefox]

In the beginning, Facebook integration was bliss. It allowed you to skip the often tedious sign up process by pressing that single blue button. But like almost every other interesting invention to date, there’s potential for misuse and abuse. Mind you, it’s nothing that should keep you up at night. Rather, the abuse I’m talking about comes in alternating doses of annoyance and discomfort.

25-06-2012
Circumvent Social Reader Applications With Unsocialize [Chrome & Firefox]
How To Split Double Paged Or Double Columned PDF Files [Mac]

Mac

How To Split Double Paged Or Double Columned PDF Files [Mac]

I’m all in favor of paper conservation and keeping our collective environmental footprint in check, so naturally I understand why some people feel obliged to print two ‘pages’ side by side on one physical page; a phenomenon I like to call ‘double-print’. But even though PDF’s are often destined for print, the fact is they are just as often distributed digitally.

25-06-2012
How To Split Double Paged Or Double Columned PDF Files [Mac]
How Browser Extensions Can Mess Up A Captcha & What To Do About It

Browsers

How Browser Extensions Can Mess Up A Captcha & What To Do About It

The ‘captcha failed’ notification is constantly lurking in the shadows. At times, it’s almost as if some dark, twisted entity is getting a laugh out of you. You’ve just painstakingly entered every stupid detail about yourself into a sign-up form, and then it strikes. Business as usual, right? You bite back a curse and diligently go through the entire ordeal once more.

18-06-2012
How Browser Extensions Can Mess Up A Captcha & What To Do About It
HimmelBar – A Menu Bar Application Launcher For Mac

Mac

HimmelBar – A Menu Bar Application Launcher For Mac

Most productivity enhancing applications are either overkills, or inflexible in regard to an established workflow. The exceptions on this rule often manage to fly under the radar; make using your computer easier, without impacting the way you do your work. That’s why try out Himmelbar with its predefined application shortlists.

11-06-2012
HimmelBar – A Menu Bar Application Launcher For Mac
Watch It – Queue Your Favorite Movies Online & Get Them On Your Platform

Internet

Watch It – Queue Your Favorite Movies Online & Get Them On Your Platform

I’ve got this note-taking application on my cellphone. I guess it’s like the “friend zone” of knowledge, a one way road. If you’re a thought, it’s the last place you want to end up. It’s not intentional. You can blame it on those cool websites that help me manage my work, my ideas, my books. But if something isn’t picked up by any of those websites, the notebook vultures get free reign.

04-06-2012
Watch It – Queue Your Favorite Movies Online & Get Them On Your Platform
3 Ways To Easily Print Out The Contents Of A Directory Or Folder [Mac]

Mac

3 Ways To Easily Print Out The Contents Of A Directory Or Folder [Mac]

Say you want to get a list of all the files contained in a certain folder. How do you go about it? The most straightforward way might be to jot down those names in TextEdit, and if we’re talking about 4 or 5 files it might even be the fastest way. Not so when you’re looking at hundreds or thousands of files, or if this task is a recurring one. In that case, we use our computer to solve this for us.

28-05-2012
3 Ways To Easily Print Out The Contents Of A Directory Or Folder [Mac]
Newser & Nokia Bring The Perfect News App To Your Windows Phone 7

Newser & Nokia Bring The Perfect News App To Your Windows Phone 7

Paper news is in decline, and not without reason. With the plethora of electronic devices available to, and in possession of, the consumer, it is easier than ever to keep up-to-date with the latest developments in the world. Smartphones and tablets, the digital papers of today, perhaps lend themselves better to news reading on the go than any other digital platform.

28-05-2012
Newser & Nokia Bring The Perfect News App To Your Windows Phone 7
Enjoy Your Comic Books With ComicBookLover [Mac & iOS]

iPhone and iPad Mac

Enjoy Your Comic Books With ComicBookLover [Mac & iOS]

Comics are an often under-appreciated form of fiction. Some of the graphic novels I’ve read rank right up there with my favorite fantasy books. But this article is not meant to recruit new comic book lovers. Rather it’s to cater to my fellow enthusiasts. For books, I’ve got my trusted Sony eReader. Alas, this device doesn’t carry itself as well with comics. That’s where the tablet comes in.

21-05-2012
Enjoy Your Comic Books With ComicBookLover [Mac & iOS]
ShareMouse – Use One Mouse & One Keyboard Across Multiple Computers

Mac Windows

ShareMouse – Use One Mouse & One Keyboard Across Multiple Computers

Better even than a multiple monitor set-up, is the multiple computer set-up. A familiar phenomenon for the geek with a laptop for on the go and a desktop computer at home or at work. Instead of splitting your computing power over several displays, you’re putting several disjunct systems in parallel. Then again, it’s almost comical how you have to juggle your computer mice and keyboards.

21-05-2012
ShareMouse – Use One Mouse & One Keyboard Across Multiple Computers
Cobook: A Beautiful & Powerful Address Book Replacement [Mac]

Mac

Cobook: A Beautiful & Powerful Address Book Replacement [Mac]

The contacts synchronization feature on my smartphone prompted me to get my contacts in order. I was rewarded for this effort a few months later when that same cellphone started breaking down, and decided to do away with all of my data — emails, contacts, applications — the whole lot of it. Restoring it all from the cloud took a measly five minutes. And yet I’ve never been able to get my contacts sorted out on my Mac. I guess I don’t like Address Book.

14-05-2012
Cobook: A Beautiful & Powerful Address Book Replacement [Mac]