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4 Mac OS X Lion Tips

Mac OS Lion is Apple's newest operating system. It looks great, however, I noticed that some of my favorite features are gone and I'm sure I'm not the only one affected by this. There are some new things I like and others I don't. Allow me to share how I brought some of my favorite features back.

Mail Favorites

You can properly sort all the messages in your mailbox by activating Mail's 'favorites bar' if it is not already enabled. You can do that by picking the View/Show Favorites Bar. Next, use the '+' button located at the bottom of the sidebar to create new subject-based folders. Now, drag that to the favorites bar.

Use the right names for the new subject-based folders. For example, I have three folders: bank, friends, and business. When there is a message, simply drag it out of the inbox to the favorites bar by releasing the mouse over whichever folder is appropriate. I use the 'bank' folder for all my banking transactions and what not. The second one is 'friends' folder and that's where I keep mail from friends. The third one is 'business' folder, which is for all business mail.

Use the old-style scrolling

One controversial change manifested in Mac OS X Lion is inverted scrolling. We are used to scrolling down to make our pages move up. Before we blame the iPad for it, we can revert to the old-style which is what Windows still uses by opening System Preferences/Mouse or System Preferences/Trackpad and unselect the box that corresponds to 'scroll direction: natural'.

How to enable the new Oxford 'British' English Dictionary

You may want to switch the dictionary app to use the British English dictionary if it is already set to American English. Open the app and click on Dictionary/Preferences. Now uncheck the default dictionary and thesaurus resources. Next, scroll down to the bottom of the list to make sure that both 'British thesaurus' and 'British dictionary' are checked.

Enable dock indicator for active applications

Previous versions of Mac OS used to display activity lights under running applications in the dock, that's not the case with Mac OS X Lion. That was the clearest way to know what's open and what is not. Therefore, to get the light back, right-click on the divider between the two halves of the dock and then click on ‘dock preferences'. Next, check 'show indicator lights for open applications'.

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