There is always a hidden feature to using a Mac or iOS device that people need to know about. Here are some of my favourites that I have discovered in the past year. I now have a few fun tips and tricks to teach in my senior tech classes.
Copy and Paste Text from images on iOS
If you have ADHD and Dyslexia like I do, trying to remember URLs, Serial numbers or phone numbers is an uphill battle. I often forget the first number before I am done reading the last. As you can imagine working with Macbook Pro serial numbers is a pain in the tail. So this feature makes me very happy.
If you are using iOS 15 or later you can take a photo of text and the phone will actually see the text as something you can copy and paste. Just open the image select the text and WOW you can copy and paste.
Shared Clipboard on iCloud.
This one was a huge surprise. Unlike the copy and paste feature of images, Apple did not make a big deal of this feature. So this is how it works. All the devices that use the same Apple iCloud account share the same clipboard.
So how this works is if you are on one device. Select the text you would like to copy and select “Copy”. Then move to your other device and select Paste.. The text that was copied on one iMac moves to the Macbook Pro!!! How cool is that? But wait there is more.
I found this feature by mistake. I was trying to copy and paste some code from my Macbook Pro to my iMac. The plan was to copy and paste the code into a text file in iCloud and then sync the text file to my other device. All was going according to plan but before I could paste the contents into the text file a customer called me from Blackheath.
I talked with my customer for a little while and scheduled a personal training class. But I forgot where I was in the process of moving that very important text. I moved to my iMac and hit paste … And all the text appeared. Then I remembered I had not even saved the text file… Testing a few other things between my iMac and Macbook I was able to figure out that iCloud was sharing the clipboard … WOW!!
Using the two features together.
Now think about this. Working with computers that have very long serial numbers I now take a photo with my iPhone. Then I add and paste them directly into my Mac computer! HOW COOL IS THAT!
While this sort of thing seems to be a small thing it is a big time saver. I love this feature so much that I think that I would have a hard time using a computer without it. I know it seems silly but the little things in life make me smile.
Focus ending conditions
In a previous post, I talked about how the Focus in iOS is very important for those who have ADHD. Focus is kind of like Do not Disturb but with a high level of customizable features. Like during the day I do not get notifications from Facebook or Snapchat. And after 5 PM my work phone does not even ring, show email notifications or even display that red number that may make me start to work outside of business hours.
I use this feature all the time when I am teaching my senior tech classes. I really do not want people to interrupt my classes. At the same time if my Daughter or Wife calls I really need to get that message right away! I just need to remember this feature and remember to turn it off.
The problem with do not disturb is that if you forget to turn it off it will continue to not inform you of phone calls and those important messages.
The feature I want to talk to you about is Focus conditions. When you turn on focus on your iPhone you can set the condition to turn off Focus when you leave the area. You can also set it to turn off after an hour. Or more importantly, you can make it so Focus turns on when you enter an area.
For example… When I go to Bathurst to teach my senior classes. My Focus mode turns to “Teaching classs” blocking all but the most important notifications. The best thing is that it used the GPS to do so. So I do not have to think about it.
How you might use this is to have a “Work Focus” so Facebook, snapchat, games or dating apps does not attempt to get your attention while you are at work. In focus set the GPS to automatically turn on focus when you arrive at work!!
How cool is that!