How to enable Picture-In-Picture for YouTube videos in macOS Sierra

How to enable Picture-In-Picture for YouTube videos in macOS Sierra

One of the new feature in macOS Sierra is the Picture-to-Picture mode for Safari. First appeared in iPad, Picture-in-Picture allows you to detach a video so that it is always viewable while using other apps.

It is easy to enable Picture-to-Picture mode for YouTube video. First right-click on the video to bring up a menu. Then right-click again on the menu to bring out a different menu. Select “Enter Picture-in-Picture” from the menu. 

The video will now detach, and stay on top so that you can watch it while using other apps. You can control the video as usual, and also resize and reposition it on the screen.

Hand draw to search special character in Google Docs

Handdraw to search special character in Google Docs

If you’re trying to type a certain scientific symbol on your computer, it is at times tedious to browse through pages of special character pane to locate the symbol that you need. Google Docs has a helpful feature where you can hand draw your character to narrow down the search. 

On Google Docs menu, select Insert > Special Characters to bring up the dialog box. On the right panel there is an empty area for you to hand draw your symbol. Your input will then be used to narrow down the search with the filtered search result display on the left panel.

This tool is handy even if you’re not a regular Google Docs user. Simply use it to locate the symbols that you need, then copy and paste them from Google Docs to Pages, Word or whatever editor you’re using.

Preserve camera mode and photo filter in Camera app for iOS 10.2

The recently released iOS 10.2 adds a new “Preserve Settings” settings to the Camera app. You can now preserve the last used settings for Camera Mode and Photo Filter. Go to Settings > Photos & Camera > Preserve Settings to turn on the switches.

Preserve camera mode and photo filter in Camera app for iOS 10

iOS defaults to opening the Camera in Photo mode. By turning on the Camera Mode in Preserve Settings, the Camera will now open in your last used camera mode. This is useful if you predominately use a particular camera mode.

Similar to Camera Mode, the Photo Filter switch will preserve the last used filter, instead of reset to None when you next use the Camera app.

Quickly restart Google Chrome

Quickly restart Google Chrome

Google Chrome on the desktop is admittedly a memory hog compares to Safari and Firefox. Beside removing non-essential Chrome add-ons, one way to release Chrome’s memory usage is to restart the browser.

Here’s a handy way to quickly restart the browser with a Chrome URL. Simply key in “chrome://restart” on the address bar and hit Enter key.

To make it one step more convenient, you might want to bookmark (Command-D) the URL “chrome://restart” and save it to your Bookmark Bar for quick access.

Uber is tracking your location even if you’re not using the app

Uber recently changed the way the app collects your location data. Previously Uber app was tracking your location “While Using the App”, which means iOS only reveal your location to Uber when you’re using the app.

When you run the latest update, Uber app will prompt you to accept their new policy with an explanation.

Uber is tracking your location even if you are not using the app

On iOS, an app has three location tracking options. The first is “Never”, the second is “While Using the App” and the third is “Always”. Thus in order to track your location five minutes after your trip ends, the app has to change to “Always” track your location.

So it is up to you to have good faith in Uber that they’re not tracking your location after the said five minutes. It is strange that Uber has to circumvent the basic iOS privacy protection to implement its app feature. As one of the largest app on iOS, Uber is in good position to discuss with Apple on how to properly get the additional five minutes tracking.  

You can prevent location tracking by going to Settings > Privacy > Location Services > Uber and select “Never”. Or remove the app if you’re uncomfortable about the changes.

You can send handwritten text in iMessage for iOS 10

Messages app for iOS 10 comes with a neat tool that allows you to scribble and send handwritten message. This feature is build right within and there is no need to install additional plugin or app.

The handwriting ability for Messages app is a little hidden though. To activate it, start by tapping into the text entry box. Then rotate iPhone into the horizontal position.

You can send handwritten text in iMessage for iOS 10

You should now see a full screen blank panel that you can scribble text on it. There is an even a handy “Undo” button on left-top corner. Once you’ve scribbled enough, tap the “Done” button on right-top corner. This will bring you back to the familiar chat screen. Simply hit the up arrow button as usual to send the handwritten message.

send handwritten text in iMessage for iOS 10

If you can not see the handwriting input panel while on horizontal position, tap the cursive loop icon button on right bottom corner of the keyboard.

Instantly add Finder item to macOS dock with a keyboard shortcut

Instantly add Finder item to macOS dock with a keyboard shortcut

Just about all macOS users are aware that you can add items to the dock by dragging the item from Finder into the dock. There is a quicker way by using a handy keyboard shortcut.

First select the item in Finder, be it an app in the Applications folder, a file or document, or even a folder. Enter Command+Control+Shift+T. The selected item will now be in the dock. Applications will be added to the left/top side of the dock, whereas documents or folder will be at the right/bottom end of the dock.

Use + in your Gmail address for easy label and search

When you send an email to a Gmail address, Google’s email system will disregard anything you put after a “+”. For example, emails send to davidwest+tips@gmail.com will be sent to davidwest@gmail.com. There is no need to create another email account.

This feature is handy for labelling and tagging purpose. For example you can use the email address davidwest+mailing@gmail.com for subscribing to newsletters. You can then label “davidwest+mailing” to easily group and find newsletter emails.

In addition to “+” plus symbol, Gmail also ignore any period in an email address. Thus emails send to “david.west@gmail.com” and “d.a.v.i.d.w.e.s.t@gmail.com” will all be sent to “davidwest@gmail.com”.

Instapaper Premium is now free

Instapaper Premium is now free

Instapaper has killed off its $29.99 per year Premium subscription service, making all the Premium features free for everyone. This put Instapaper well ahead of its competitor Pocket.

Instapaper Premium includes an ad-free Instapaper website, full-text search, unlimited notes, text-to-speech playlists, unlimited speed reading, send to Kindle and Kindle Digests of up to 50 articles.

To migrate from Pocket, run the export tool at https://getpocket.com/export. Then at Instapaper go to Settings > Import

You might wonder how can Instapaper be an on-going concern with no subscription income and ads revenue. These are the replies from Instapaper:

There’s no catch. Our operational overhead is low, and now that we’re owned by Pinterest we can focus on just delivering the best product to our users.

The value that Pinterest gets from Instapaper are improvements to our text parser and aggregate information about links on the web. We have no plans to serve ads.