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3 Ways To Manage Display Settings In Mac OS X Mountain Lion

display settings mountain lionWith Mac OS X Mountain Lion, Apple introduced a number of changes; some small, some big. One of those tiny changes that impacted my workflow most is the disappearance of the menu bar display menu.
Before the update, ticking off a checkbox in the Mac OS X display preferences pane would introduce a nifty display icon in the menu bar at the top of your screen. Using that icon, you could toggle between different display resolutions with a mouse click or two. If you’re in the habit of using different external displays or beamers during your work, that’s a priceless little tool.
That menu bar icon is now gone. In this article, we’re going to look at three different ways to easily change and manage display settings on the fly.

1. Use The Keyboard Shortcuts

The most straightforward solution would be to navigate to and through the System Preferences to the Display preferences pane. By selecting the ‘scaled‘ resolution option, as opposed to ‘best for built-in display‘, you’ll be able to select a different resolution manually. Hold the option (alt) key to show the Detect Displays button.
display settings mountain lion
Rather than taking the long route through the System Preferences, hold the option (alt) key on your keyboard and press one of the brightness adjustment keys to open the Display preferences pane straightaway.

2. Display Menu

Using the keyboard shortcut described above helps a lot to speed up your workflow, but if you’d like something more akin to the menu bar icon of old (and are not averse to installing third-party software), you should take a look at Display Menu, which is available in the App Store for free.

mountain lion external display settings
Once installed, you’ll see a display icon in your Mac OS X menu bar. Clicking it will allow you to manually select an alternative resolution for any of the currently connected displays (all in a separate sub-menu). Adding to this, there’s a Mirror Displays option that lets you show the same content on all the connected displays, instead of extending your desktop across display borders.
At the time of writing, Display Menu does not support the two small display modes of the retina MacBook pro. If you’re using a computer with retina display, check out QuickRes below.

3. QuickRes

QuickRes is another application aimed at adding display resolution options to your Mac’s menu bar. Part of the functionality overlaps with Display Menu (discussed above). That is, QuickRes also lets you select a screen resolution on the fly by right-clicking the display icon.
display settings mountain lion
However, you can also choose anything from two to eight preferred display resolutions in the application preferences. Left clicking the display icon then toggles through these presets in order while showing a notification of the new resolution on your computer screen. Specifying a keyboard shortcut (or using the default option+cmd+R) gives you another way of running through your resolution presets.
How often do you use external displays and custom screen resolutions in your workflow? What’s your approach? Let us know in the comments section below the article!

Mac OS X 10.9 Development Under Way, Regularly Appearing in Analytics Logs

Mac OS X 10.9 appearing in 9to5mac  web logs
Development of the next major release of Mac OS X is well under way, with version OS X 10.9 regularly appearing in web analytics logs of OSXDaily, 9to5mac, AppleInsider, CultofMac, and several other Apple-related websites. This was first brought to light today by 9to5mac, whose graph above shows a handful of visitors from Cupertino California running a new, unreleased version of Mac OS, labeled as “Intel 10.9″. Cupertino is the location of Apple’s corporate campus.
For OSXDaily, the first appearance of OS X 10.9 came in logs from July 2012, around the launch of OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion. As the graph below demonstrates, there has been a consistent upward trend appearing in our logs as more and more (presumed) Apple engineers use and work on the internal build of OS X.
Monthly ramp up of OS X 10.9 usage on the web
There is open speculation as to what the next version of OS X will be called, and whether or not Apple will stick with the cat named theme. The number of familiar feline names is running thin, and though it’s unlikely Apple would choose an unfamiliar cat name for 10.9, a name like OS X Andean Mountain Cat or OS X Iberian Lynx could certainly surprise us all.

OS X 10.9 Longcat [Humor]

OS X 10.9 Longcat
Now that OS X 10.9 is regularly appearing in usage logs, we thought we’d take a stab at the naming convention. How about OS X Longcat?
Yup, we’re bored today and diving straight into the pool of Longcat memes, and there’s nothing better than boredom and some Pixelmator fun to create something totally stupid. Don’t worry, we’ll be back to our normal useful selves soon here.
On a more serious note, what do you think the next version of OS X will be called? There have been some pretty hilarious suggestions on our Facebook page

Apple Acknowledges iMessage and FaceTime Outage

Apple has acknowledged on their iCloud status page that iCloud iMessage and FaceTime services are offline for some users.

Reports first started rolling in around 3pm Pacific on our forums with some users still reporting problems.

Apple Discontinuing Messages Beta for Lion on December 14th

On Friday, Apple sent out emails to customers that the company will be discontinuing the Messages Beta program for Lion on December 14th, 2012:

Dear [User],

The Messages Beta program for Lion will end on Friday, December 14, 2012. We hope you've enjoyed the opportunity to preview Messages.

If you'd like to continue using Messages, upgrade to OS X Mountain Lion from the Mac App Store. Messages is one of many great new apps and features built right into OS X Mountain Lion. Learn More.

Thank you for your participation in the Messages Beta program.
The email indicates that in order to continue to use Messages, users must upgrade to OS X Mountain Lion. OS X Mountain Lion is available for $19.99 on the Mac App Store [Direct Link].

Messages is Apple's iMessage client for the Mac, and replaces iChat in OS X Mountain Lion. Apple had originally launched it as a beta program for existing Lion users while Mountain Lion was being completed.

It has been long known that Apple planned on discontinuing the Lion beta, but Apple is only now given customers a timetable. While Apple suggests that customers can upgrade to OS X Mountain Lion to continue using Messages, some customers' computers may be too old to support the latest OS X release.