The relentlessly helpful blog


Introduction to screencasts

In this post, John Espirian provides an introduction to the process of screencasting and to the tools used for the job.

ScreenFlow

As a freelance technical writer, I sometimes create short videos to help my clients’ audience understand how a service works. These ‘screencasts’ appeal to the growing proportion of users who are turned off by traditional written materials.

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Call me – maybe

In this post, John Espirian discusses the difficult decision of whether to display your telephone number on your website.

Call John Espirian

Call me – maybe

For prospective clients

I really do prefer email, so drop me a line at support *at* espirian.co.uk and we’ll go from there.

If you really need my phone number, look at the grid image below.

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MicroMacTips part 1

In this post, John Espirian shares 5 quick and simple tips for Mac users. These ‘MicroMacTips’ should make your digital life a tiny bit more bearable.

MicroMacTips part 1

I use all sorts of little tricks to boost my productivity. On their own, each of these wouldn’t be enough to justify its own blog post, so here are 5 quick and easy MicroMacTips to help you along.

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Parallels: Windows for Mac users

In this guest post for the Society for Editors and Proofreaders (SfEP), John Espirian discusses how Mac users can access Windows programs, focusing on the Parallels ‘virtual machine’ app.

Parallels for Mac

If an ideal world, I’d use a Mac without ever venturing over to the dark side of PCs. But sometimes it’s not possible, because some important piece of software runs only on Windows. Although this is a pain, it doesn’t mean you have to keep a PC on standby. I’ve come up with a couple of alternatives in a post I recently wrote for the SfEP.
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Reduce display transparency on your Mac

In this post, John Espirian provides a quick tip to speed up your Mac by reducing the display transparency. You’ll also benefit by having a clearer view of your system menus and the Dock.

Reduce display transparency on your Mac

If you’re an Apple fan like me, you’ll appreciate the beauty of the Mac operating system. But when it comes to getting stuff done a little faster, what do you think about sacrificing a bit of that beauty for a small increase in your machine’s speed? If that sounds like a fair trade-off, this tip is for you.

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Secret Mac toolbar shortcut

In this post, John Espirian shares another quick and easy tip for improving the efficiency of your Mac.

Secret toolbar shortcut

Whenever I’m busy working on a project, I often find myself regularly referring to a small group of files. It might be a style guide, a client brief or a general crib sheet. I don’t like to interrupt my stream of thought too much, so it’s important to me that such files are easily accessible. The last thing I want is to try to remember where a particular document is and then go clicking about through folders to open it.
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iPad Pro Smart Keyboard: first impressions

In this post, John Espirian shares his thoughts about the latest accessory for owners of the iPad Pro – the Smart Keyboard.

iPad Pro with Smart Keyboard

iPad Pro with Smart Keyboard

Having recently bought an iPad Pro, I couldn’t resist the temptation of pairing it up with the new Smart Keyboard. Apple took their time to make the unit available for delivery, but now it’s here I thought I’d share some notes about my early experiences with it. Was it worth the money? Read on and see what you think.

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