CDPUG BlogSphere

News for Digital Designer and Members and Friends of the Cleveland Digital Publishing Users Group

Our 30th(!) high school reunions have us reflecting on how the tech world’s constant striving for improvement encourages us all to stay flexible, keep learning, and periodically make sure we’re working efficiently. Take Control is here to support you in that, so through August 24th, you can add any number of our books to your Take Control library for 50% off the cover price. All our books are DRM-free and available in PDF, EPUB, and Mobipocket (Kindle) formats, so you can read wherever, whenever, and on whatever device you like. Use this link to pick the titles you need to stay up to date:

(We expect everything to work properly, but if our newly redesigned site is overloaded by sale traffic, try again later in the day when things have settled down.)

Remember, there’s no need to read a Take Control title from front to back; instead, each book has a Quick Start that helps you jump instantly to the information you need.

We have books that will help with numerous Apple-related technology tasks and projects, including:

* Converting from iPhoto to Photos

* Figuring out what the heck iTunes 12 is up to

* Maintaining an AirPort-based Wi-Fi network

* Installing and running OS X Server

* Syncing and sharing files with Dropbox

* Enjoying your Apple Watch

For those new to Take Control and looking for a quick fix, we have a few instant-purchase bundles, also 50% off:

* iWork explained: Apple’s iWork suite — Pages, Numbers, and Keynote — now comes free with every new Mac, and offers a level of power that compares well with the heavyweight Microsoft Office. The three books in our iWork trilogy provide 750 pages of comprehensive documentation. Normally the three books would cost $55, but for this week, they’re only $27.50 — perfect for college papers and projects.

* Automation for everyone: Macs have fabulous time-saving tools that can turn anyone into a power user. This bundle of “Take Control of Automating Your Mac,” “Take Control of LaunchBar,” “Take Control of TextExpander,” and “Take Control of the Mac Command Line with Terminal” would normally cost $50, but is only $25 in the sale.

* Safe computing: Today’s Internet is unfortunately an insecure place, with hackers, malware, and bots threatening your privacy and security. With calm, friendly advice, Joe Kissell explains how you can stay safe in “Take Control of Security for Mac Users,” “Take Control of Your Online Privacy,” “Take Control of Your Passwords,” and “Take Control of FileVault.” Together they’re normally $50, but if you’ve been meaning to lock down your Mac and improve your passwords, you can now pick them up for only $25.

We also have books about Yosemite, iOS 8, Apple Mail, iCloud, Audio Hijack, PDFpen, Scrivener, DEVONthink, Apple TV, and more. So stock your Take Control library today with the titles that you’ve been wanting to read or that might be useful in the future!

Thanks so much for your continued support, and the many useful questions and kind comments you’ve sent over the years. Please do us a quick favor, and spread the word about this sale to your friends and colleagues — it’s the perfect way to introduce someone to the series or to get your buddy to switch over to using Photos.

cheers… -Adam & Tonya Engst, Take Control publishers

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Recording audio from a Mac app is conceptually simple, but without the right tools and know-how, it can be tremendously frustrating. We’ve long relied on Rogue Amoeba’s Audio Hijack for all recording tasks, and today we’re pleased to bring you Kirk McElhearn’s new “Take Control of Audio Hijack” to explain both the basics and the subtleties of Audio Hijack 3’s flowchart-like interface.

Get more info and buy it for $10 >

You’ll learn how to capture and enhance any audio playing on a Mac, with step-by-step instructions for common scenarios — including recording audio playing in Safari, capturing Skype and FaceTime calls, digitizing your old LPs, extracting audio from concert DVDs, and working with mics and mixers, among much else. Kirk also covers the basics of editing recordings in Rogue Amoeba’s Fission audio editor.

We could go on for a while about all the good stuff that Kirk distilled into the 119-page book, but if you’ve read this far and want more detail, click the link above to read the book’s full description on our redesigned Web site.

-Tonya & Adam Engst, Take Control publishers

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Little is more stressful than giving a major presentation, whether it’s for a hiring committee, the city council, or your local MUG. Proper preparation is essential, which is why Joe Kissell’s new book, “Take Control of Keynote,” walks you through every step of the process: planning what you want to say, creating attractive slides that support your points, and delivering a successful talk. The 168-page book is ideal for beginners, but it also has plenty of tips and documentation of subtle features for long-time Keynote users. The book normally costs $15, but the 30% MUG discount drops that to $10.50. Learn more about the book and buy it via the coupon-loaded link below.

Building on his years of public speaking at Macworld Expo, Mac Mania cruises, and innumerable Mac user groups, Joe starts by explaining how to PLAN your presentation even before you launch Keynote. He then helps you choose the right theme in Keynote, and explains how to CREATE slides by filling in placeholders, adding objects (images, movies, sounds, tables, and charts), and inserting and styling text. You’ll also learn how to add build effects to slides and transitions between slides to disclose information progressively, highlight particular objects or text as you speak, and call attention to topic changes. Lastly, Joe offers real-world advice about how to DELIVER a successful talk, including tips on making presenter notes and customizing your presenter display, rehearsing, setting up your display, and controlling your presentation.

Not all presentations are meant to be given in person, and Joe also explains how to deliver remote presentations over the Internet, make self-playing presentations for kiosks, and create presentations with recorded narration. The book covers Keynote for the Mac, but includes an appendix that discusses what’s similar and different in Keynote for iOS and Keynote for iCloud.

“Take Control of Keynote” rounds out our trilogy of books about Apple’s iWork suite, joining Michael E. Cohen’s “Take Control of Pages” and Sharon Zardetto’s “Take Control of Numbers.” All three rank among our most comprehensive titles, so if you’ve replaced Microsoft Office with iWork, we now have complete documentation for you. All three books are available separately, but if you want the full 750-page collection, you can also save 30%, dropping the $55 cover price to $38.50.
Thank you for your support of the Take Control series!
cheers… -Adam & Tonya Engst, Take Control publishers

P.S. Check out some of our other recently released ebooks, all at 30% off:
* Take Control of iTunes 12: The FAQ (with Apple Music coverage!)
* Photos for Mac: A Take Control Crash Course
* Backing Up Your Mac: A Joe On Tech Guide
* Take Control of TextExpander, Second Edition

If you’re anything like us, you can think of what you want to say far more quickly than your fingers can tap it out on your keyboard. That’s doubly true in iOS. You’ve likely heard of Smile’s TextExpander, which can expand a short abbreviation like “tctext” into the title of our latest book, Michael Cohen’s “Take Control of TextExpander, Second Edition”.

Type 6 characters, get 46, with no typos or finger fumbling. Even better, TextExpander can automatically fix your common mistakes and misspellings, replacing “inclduing” with “including”, for instance, or correcting the capitalization of “Filemaker” to “FileMaker”. The book normally costs $10, but the 30% MUG discount drops that to $7. Learn more about the book and buy it via the coupon-loaded link below.

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This just-released second edition covers the new TextExpander 5 for the Mac, along with TextExpander touch 3 for iOS. In the 117-page book, Michael describes TextExpander’s options for creating, inserting, and working with these abbreviation/expansion snippets, including how to use them on an iPad or iPhone with TextExpander touch, which sports its own iOS keyboard that works in any app.

Although many people begin using TextExpander for just a few key text expansions, there’s no reason to stop there. Michael explains how to insert a variety of special items with a snippet, including graphics, formatted text, emoji, date and time math/macros, fill-in forms, other snippets, and clipboard contents. You’ll even find directions for setting up snippets that execute Unix commands and AppleScripts.

The book also explains these important TextExpander techniques:

* Working with TextExpander from a menu or window, depending on your needs

* Making snippets adapt their capitalization based on context

* Quickly modifying an existing snippet

* Syncing and sharing snippets via a variety of approaches

* Using special, downloadable snippet groups that can insert special characters, autocorrect misspelled text, insert HTML and CSS codes, and more

And, you’ll learn about the features that are new to TextExpander 5:

* Getting the Suggestions feature to help you create needed new snippets quickly

* Invoking the nifty inline snippet search panel directly adjacent to your insertion point

* Integrating JavaScript into TextExpander snippets

TextExpander has helped us avoid typing about 750,000 characters (4–5 books’ worth!) over the past few years, a fact revealed by its Statistics window. TextExpander enables uses both mundane (insert your email address, or the current date) and creative (insert an email signature that includes your email address and company logo, and calculates the number of days remaining in your deadline), and even those that lean toward pranks (insert a picture of a wombat and tell iTunes to start playing “Tales of Girls, Boys, and Marsupials” by The Wombats). While we can’t condone any further gratuitous wombat references, we do hope that readers will find many practical and enjoyable ways to use TextExpander.

Thank you for your support of the Take Control series!

-Adam & Tonya Engst, Take Control publishers



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iTunes — can’t live with it, can’t without it. That has become all the more true with the free 3-month trial of Apple’s new Apple Music streaming service, since the way it’s integrated into iTunes 12.2 has caused untold consternation.

Luckily, Kirk McElhearn may know more about iTunes than anyone outside Apple, with posts on his Kirkville blog and his iTunes Guy articles for Macworld helping hundreds of thousands of people each month. Now he has distilled his knowledge into “Take Control of iTunes 12: The FAQ,” a 251-page book perfectly timed to answer your questions about the intertwined options in Apple Music, the iCloud Music Library feature, and iTunes Match. The book normally costs $15, but the 30% MUG discount drops that to $10.50. Learn more about the book and buy it via the coupon-loaded link below.

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(After you follow the link, click the green Buy button to add the title to your cart in the redesigned Take Control site — you’ll see the $5 discount before you finish checking out.)

True to its FAQ title, and befitting the many questions people have about iTunes, the book answers about 150 frequently asked questions about all aspects of the app. Chapters such as Play, Rip, Buy, Tag, View, Organize, Search, Sync, Cloud, and Share cover the basics and beyond. Read more about each of these chapters on our Web site, under More Info, and click the Free Sample post-it on the book cover to check out a PDF sample of the first few pages of each chapter.

Thank you for your support of the Take Control series!

-Adam & Tonya Engst, Take Control publishers

P.S. Check out some of our other recently released eBooks at, all at 30% off:

* Photos for Mac: A Take Control Crash Course

* Apple Watch: A Take Control Crash Course

* Backing Up Your Mac: A Joe On Tech Guide

* Take Control of TextExpander, Second Edition

Cleveland GiveCamp needs 9 Graphic/User Experience Designers and 12 Non-tech people – social media, event helpers. The weekend event starts July 17 at 5 p.m. to July 19 at 6 p.m.

To sign up go to:


GiveCamp is a weekend-long event where software developers, designers, database administrators, project managers and creative professionals donate their time to create software and web-based applications for non-profit organizations. The event takes place at the LeanDog Boat (former Hornblowers) and Burke Lakefront Airport on the shores of Lake Erie.

The event is entirely volunteer-driven and some of the volunteers take the “camp” part of GiveCamp literally, pitching tents and staying all weekend. Great meals are provided and there are many opportunities to network with professionals from around the region. Overall, it’s a great opportunity for people to work together, develop new friendships, and do something important for the community.

There are a variety of projects completed during GiveCamp weekend. The only limitation is that the project should be scoped to be able to be completed in a weekend. All source code must be turned over to the nonprofits at the end of the weekend (developers cannot ask for payment) and the nonprofits are responsible for maintaining the code moving forward.