I may be a little late to the party here, but I just received my invite to test out Alto by Aol. Alto is Aol’s new take on the age-old thing we all use called email, and its actually got some interesting and useful ideas that are well implemented. But is it enough to get people to use the service?
See, the thing about Alto is its more like a wrapping paper over your existing email account than anything else. This isn’t a bad thing, either. In fact, I think it’s a great approach to reinventing email, mostly because these days people aren’t looking for a new email suffix (e.g. @altomail.com) that they have to tell everyone about. The fact that I don’t even see a way to get an @altomail.com address and that you can import your existing email account into Alto is a huge plus. And right now, Alto has support for importing your Gmail, Yahoo, Aol, and/or iCloud email accounts.
If it’s one thing we have heard about Apple computers it is that they are expensive, can’t be customized and everything is made for someone without a brain. However, Apple in truth provides one of the most customizable and feature rich operating systems currently on the market. In an attempt to redeem the Mac OS I’ve compiled a list of tips tricks and features.
One of the more interesting features about a Mac is it’s unique dock. Applications are placed in the left of the dock to allow easy access to your most used programs. Folder are placed in the right of the dock for ease of access. Here are a few pointers for customizing your dock.
- By default when applications are minimized they go into the right part of the dock. This can be redundant and kind of annoying. To have your applications minimize into the application icon in the dock simply navigate to System Preferences (This is by default in the dock. If not click the Apple logo in the upper left then click System Preferences.) Inside System Preferences you’ll find under the Personal options Dock. By clicking it you’ll be presented with all the options for your mac dock. To enable windows minimized to the application icon tick the box “Minimize windows into application icon”
- Stacks are a really cool feature in OS X. Not only does it make the folders placed in the dock look really bad ass it also gives you the ability to customize the look of your folders in the dock. Simply find a photo any photo and place it in the folder you want to customize. Rename the photo to *.jpg (Yes that is an asterisk.) This will ensure the photo you select is always in the front of the stack. That is it! You have a completely customized icon for your stack.
Do you use Gmail as a universal email inbox? Or do simply want a nicely formatted email signature? Well, after a lot of waiting, Google has finally made improvements to the signature feature of their web-based email client. These improvements are somewhat basic, but their subtle introduction to Gmail has made the service that much more amazing.
When you access your signature settings from the “General” tab of the “Settings” window, you will probably notice that instead of the plain text box that you used to see when editing your default signature, you see will now see a rich text box. This box now allows you to format your signature to your liking with bold, italic, and underline settings, as well as the options to set font size and insert images and hyperlinks. This is great if you want to include a logo or a hyperlink to your website as part of your email signature.