Category Archives: How To (Mac)

How to program the Raspberry Pi Pico in C on a Mac

Last week I tried the Raspberry Pi Pico with MicroPython. The Raspberry Pi Foundation would be sufficiently commended for providing only this level of programming support. MicroPython leverages the Python skills of the many Raspberry Pi users out there and is accessible to plenty of others too. But the Foundation has also provided a C/C++ SDK, and this opens the Pico up to serious embedded-system developers too.

The Raspberry Pi Pico
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How To Write macOS Command Line Tools with Swift

I’ve spent a lot of time of late working on several macOS command line tools written in Swift. So I’ve gathered together the key points I’ve learned while creating and updating pdfmaker and imageprep: some best practices and ways to deliver many of the features common to programs the run at the command line.

imageprep running in Terminal
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How to Script macOS Command Line Tool Notarization and Packaging for Distribution

A few posts back, I talked about the script I use to package macOS apps that I distribute outside of the Mac App Store. That script is designed to simplify the complex process of signing and notarizing not only the app itself but also the installer package its ships within. This is all made necessary by the ever more rigorous, annoying but necessary security provisions Apple is applying to macOS.

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How to take control of macOS Finder window sizes

I don’t know if this is a glitch in my system — I see it in a couple of machines, though both have the same config — but under macOS Catalina, Finder has an annoying habit of ignoring the size of windows. Pop up a new Finder window and it’s just a small quarter-of-screen panel at the top left of the desktop, not the much larger panel that the most recently closed window was.

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How to quickly package macOS apps for distribution outside the App Store

Preparing a macOS app for distribution through the App Store is fairly easy using Xcode, but to do so for apps that you plan to distribute as a binary by other means — as a download from your own website, for example — isn’t straightforward, and it has got more complicated over recent macOS releases.

macOS app package icon
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How to provide file icon thumbnails in macOS

Update My PreviewMarkdown app, which provides Markdown file previews and icon thumbnails in Catalins, is now available from the Mac App Store.

Providing content-based icon thumbnails in macOS Catalina follows the same pattern as generating file previews: QuickLook runs code from an app extension and calls a function within that code to draw the image that will be placed on the icon.

thumbs
Markdown file previews in Catalina, courtesy of PreviewMarkdown
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How to create file previews in macOS

Update My PreviewMarkdown app, which provides Markdown file previews and icon thumbnails in Catalina, is now available from the Mac App Store.

macOS Catalina introduces a new mechanism for providing file previews and content-based file icons. The system for doing this is still QuickLook, but the standalone or app-hosted QuickLook generators that have been in use for some time have been deprecated in favour of delivering this functionality through app extensions.

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A Markdown preview in Catalina, courtesy of PreviewMarkdown
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How to fix iCloud bookmark sync glitches

Has iCloud and/or Safari just borked your bookmarks? This happened to me yesterday; here’s how I fixed it…

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