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ATPM 14.12
December 2008


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by Robert Paul Leitao,

Welcome to the December issue of About This Particular Macintosh! We’ve entered one of the strangest economic periods in decades. Journalists, economists, politicians, and all-around everyday folk are watching the consumer spending trends this holiday season for clues concerning the near-term performance of the economy. This particular holiday shopping season may be one of the most interesting on record. While we wait for the economic news to come in, the editors of ATPM are happy to provide you with another new issue. There’s no cost for our magazine. We only ask that you spend some time reading our digital pages.

The iPod touch

Most of us have seen the commercials for Apple’s iPod touch. It’s being marketed as a handheld gaming station in direct competition with the handheld devices offered by Sony and Nintendo. One of its big advantages is the iTunes App Store. No cartridges, no waiting in line, no shortage of inventory for the games announced as available. Will the iPod touch be the big winner in the holiday sales race? You can bet the device will hold its own in the market.

What’s Your Favorite iPhone App?

With thousands of free and low-cost applications available for the iPhone and iPod touch, what’s your favorite? A game, a productivity tool, or a social networking app? While this holiday shopping season might not be among the best by historical standards, applications available through iTunes for the iPhone and iPod touch should set sales records this quarter. Send your personal review of your favorite application to our editors. Our December mail bag might carry your words to print.

Black Friday Madness

Even before final results are in for post-Thanksgiving weekend retail sales, Black Friday lived up to its reputation as a raucous annual event of low prices, big crowds, and store-opening mayhem. It’s no wonder online shopping on Black Friday is becoming increasingly popular. No lines, no pushing, and often times the same low prices. has reported the iPod touch was the most popular electronics product in early Black Friday sales.

The iPhone Gift Card

For those who don’t wish to leave home for holiday shopping, Apple now offers the iPhone Gift Card. It’s an Apple gift card with an iPhone theme and available for purchase in amounts from $25 to $2,500. It can be purchased and sent online to a happy recipient on your holiday gift list.

The Best Gifts Are Still Free

Each month, the editors of ATPM scour the world of Apple computing to bring you interesting views and product reviews. As we enter the holiday season, please consider passing along a copy of our December issue or e-mailing a link to our site to friends and family members for holiday reading. After a day of fighting the crowds or fighting for the best gift prices online, ATPM makes for enjoyable holiday season reading. It’s a gift without cost to you but a gift of fun and knowledge that may engage the recipient in each new monthly issue.

Our December issue includes:

Mac About Town: What’s a Guy to Do?

Get the Christmas shopping thinking going early with some consideration of what an economic downturn can mean for the items on your list. Send in your suggestion.

MacMuser: What a Scrubber

Mark Tennent discusses the Services menu—an oft-overlooked feature of Mac OS X.

Next Actions: Non-Typical Lists

This month brings a tangential topic from Ed Eubanks Jr. as he discusses lists that don’t fit the norm.

Hollywood: My Dad’s Got a Barn. Let’s Put on a Show!

Tools for low (or no) budget filmmaking have dramatically changed since Mike Shields’ last installment back in 2004. This month, he discusses the merits of a Mac-based solution for such projects.

How To: Taming the Two-headed Monster: Using Two Monitors With Your Mac

Using two monitors on your computer isn’t just for mirroring the primary display for presentations. Even with Leopard’s Spaces feature, the extra real estate of a second monitor can be extremely advantageous. Sylvester Roque shares some ideas on making the most of the elbow room.

Desktop Pictures: Rocky Mountain National Forest

Lee Bennett provides this month’s desktop pictures from the Rocky Mountain National Forest in Colorado.

Review: Art Text 2.0.2

Art Text 2 includes welcome additional features like layers and WYSIWYG styles, but not all changes are good.

Review: Checkpoint Flyer (and Accessories)

Ed Eubanks Jr. is impressed with these new products from Tom Bihn.

Review: ExpanDrive 1.3.1

ExpanDrive is probably the most Mac-like FTP utility you’ll find, but even though it works simply, does it simply work?

Review: Foundations of Mac OS X Leopard Security

Paul Fatula reviews Edge, Barker, and Smith’s Foundations of Mac OS X Security, a book which covers its topic quite thoroughly, though it may not be a good choice for beginners.

Review: GL Golf 2.1.8

“GL Golf isn’t going to take away your dreams of playing St. Andrews or Torrey Pines. But, if you like golf, GL Golf will offer you a lot of fun in a surprisingly realistic game.”

Review: iRecord Pro

Streaming Networks has released its second-generation stand-alone video encoder, but does it live up to the “Pro” moniker?

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