Customize Your Mighty Mouse:

Whether you’re using a wired or wireless Mighty Mouse, you can customize it easily:

1. Choose System Preferences from the Apple menu.
2. Click Keyboard & Mouse; then click the Mouse tab.
You can program the four buttons on your Mighty Mouse, set scrolling options, and set response sensitivities for tracking, scrolling, and double-clicking.

Customize Your Mac with a Screen Saver:

Screen savers offer a great way to customize — and enjoy — your Mac. You have a variety of screen savers to choose from:

1. Choose System Preferences from the Apple menu.
2. Click Desktop & Screen Saver; then click the Screen Saver tab.
The column on the left lists the possibilities. You can also tell Mac OS X to generate a screen saver automatically based on the album art in your iTunes library or the photos in your iPhoto or Aperture photo libraries.

Simply click any of the available options to choose a screen saver. You can try it by clicking Test below the Preview screen.

Quickly Activate Your Screen Saver:

By designating a Hot Corner, you can have your screen saver start whenever you move the mouse into that corner. Here’s how:

1. Choose System Preferences from the Apple menu.
2. Click Desktop & Screen Saver and click the Screen Saver tab.
3. Choose one Screen Saver option and click the Hot Corners button.
4. Use the pull-down menus to indicate the corner you’d like to use to activate your screen saver.

Open Applications Automatically on Startup:

If you frequently listen to music, surf the web, get your email, or chat with friends, you may want your computer to open those applications every time you start up. On a Mac, it’s simple to do. Select System Preferences from the Apple menu, then:

1. Click Accounts (in the System row of the System Preferences window).
2. Click the Login Items tab.
3.Click the Add (+) button.
4. Scroll down and click Applications
5. Select iTunes and click the Add button.

The next time you start up your Mac, iTunes will start up, too. In addition to opening applications at Start Up, you can have Mac OS X open documents.

Quickly Switch Between Applications:

The Mac makes it easy to have multiple applications — Mail, Safari, iTunes, Pages, iChat, iPhoto, and others — open at the same time. So how do you quickly switch from Safari, let’s say, to Mail?

Just hold down the Command key and press the Tab key (Command-Tab). Mac OS X immediately displays a mini-Dock with icons for each of your open applications. At the left side of the mini-Dock, you’ll see the icon for your current application. Next to it (and highlighted), you’ll find the icon for the application you last used. Each time you press the Tab key (without releasing the Command key), you can cycle through your open applications.

One more tip: You can also use the Left Arrow and Right Arrow keys to navigate your open applications.

Get Dictionary Definitions in One Click:

You’re using Safari to research a paper on climate change and you find the phrase “anthropogenic greenhouse gas concentrations.” What exactly does “anthropogenic” mean?

Here’s a fast way to get the definition of a word you’re not familiar with.

1. Hover your Mighty Mouse over the word and right-click.
2. Choose Look Up in Dictionary from the menu that appears.
3. Mac OS X immediately opens Dictionary and finds the meaning of “anthropogenic” for you.

Stored in the Applications folder, Dictionary works with all Mac OS X applications.

Go Home:

Whether you share a Mac with others or have one all to yourself, you can find all your personal data — documents, downloads, music, and more — in the home folder Mac OS X created for you when you set up your Mac (or when someone created an account for you).

You can spot your home folder easily: It’s the one with the icon of a house and your account name. And if you place it in the Dock, you can open it quickly without having to open any folders. Here’s how:

1. In the Finder, click the icon for your hard drive. (Unless you’ve renamed it, it’s probably called Macintosh HD.)
2. Open the Users folder.
3. Then drag your home folder from the Users folder into the Dock and release the mouse button.

Now, whenever you need anything in your home folder, you can access it quickly from the Dock.

Back Up Your Music, Photos, and Documents:

Time Machine is the fabulous backup application that’s part of Mac OS X Leopard. To use Time Machine, simply connect an external hard drive to your computer. The first time you connect it to your Mac, Leopard displays a dialog asking if you’d like to use it as your backup location. If the dialog doesn’t appear, don’t worry:

1. Choose System Preferences from the Apple menu.
2. Click the Time Machine icon.
3. Click Choose Backup Disk.

Time Machine toggles on, changes the image for your backup disk, and indicates when the next (in this case, the first) backup will occur). For best results, you should use a drive that’s at least as large as your Mac startup drive. (If your internal hard drive can hold up to 250GB of data, your Time Machine volume should hold at least 250GB.) And it’s a good idea not to store any other data on your Time Machine drive. That way, you maximize the amount of space you have to backup your files.

Take a Quick Look

How do you quickly find a photo without opening them one at a time?

Let Quick Look help you. A new feature in Leopard, Quick Look lets you browse files — photos, Pages documents, Keynote presentations, QuickTime movies, Microsoft Word and Excel files — without having to open an application. Here’s how:

In the Finder, open the folder that contains the item you hope to find.
Select a photo; then click the Quick Look button in the folder’s toolbar (or press Command-Y).
Leopard instantly opens a Quick Look window with the photo you selected.

Not the photo you were looking for? Just click another. Quick Look keeps the preview window open, letting you click photos until you find the one you want.

Capture Screen Shots

In Mac OS X, you can use simple keyboard shortcuts to do all sorts of things, including capturing images of what’s on your Mac screen. For example, you can take a screen shot of your entire screen by holding down the Command and Shift keys and pressing a 3.

If you hold down the Command and Shift keys and press 4, Mac OS X turns the cursor into crosshairs you can use to select whatever portion of your display you’d like to capture in a screen shot.

If you immediately hit the Spacebar after typing Command-Shift-4, Mac OS X replaces those crosshairs with a little a camera. Using the camera, you can take a screen shot of the Dock, the entire menu bar, a single open menu, the desktop, or any open window.