Get iOS Screenshots On Your Mac for FREE

This is a really cool hack – for those of you with a Mac and iOS devices. I just set it up and it works great (saves me from buying an app for $3.99 that does the same thing).

Easy step-by-step instructions from The Iconmaster:

(note I added one additional step at the bottom that adds the jpg pictures)

The Easy Way to Get iOS Screenshots On Your Mac

April 4th, 2012

In my iOS design work, I take a lot of screenshots for the purpose of measuring distances between elements. To quickly get an iOS screenshot onto my Mac, Image Capture used to do the trick. Then, with the upgrade to iOS 5, Image Capture became flaky for this purpose. I filed a bug report, Apple tried to address it; but the process remains iffy.

I gave up on Image Capture and used Dropbox. But if you’ve used Dropbox for this purpose, you know it involves several steps: launch the app, tap the Uploads tab, tap the add button, tap the photo, etc. etc. It works, but it wasn’t convenient enough.

I wanted something instantaneous. Fortunately, Ryan McCuaig was able to point me in the right direction. Follow these steps and you, too, can experience painless iOS screenshot sharing on your Mac.

Ensure all your iOS devices use Photo Stream

On each of your iPads, iPhones etc. check iCloud settings in the Settings app. Photo Stream should be set to On.

Locate the Photo Stream in the Finder

Since the user’s Library folder is now hidden by default, I can’t just give you the file path. In the Finder, option-click on the Go menu and hit “Library.” Then navigate to Application Support > iLifeAssetManagement > assets > sub. In the search filed, type “png”; then select “Portable Network Graphics image” from the popup.

Save the Search

Click the Save button under the search field. Give the saved search a name like “Screenshots.” Leave “Add to Sidebar” checked.

This ought to be the end, but it’s not. For some reason, this particular saved search acts up when accessed from the Finder sidebar (at least on my version of OS X). Sometimes it works, sometimes it returns zero results. The fix for this is to add it to the Dock instead. Hit up the contextual menu and do that.

(Note: a few folks have told me they don’t have “Add to Dock” in their contextual menu. Your alternative is to navigate to your Saved Searches folder in your Library folder — again: in the Finder, option-click on the Go menu and hit “Library.” The saved search you created should be in there.)

I recommend also removing the saved search from the sidebar via the same menu.

Now, you have a live-updating folder of all PNG images that arrive on your Mac via Photo Stream.

You’ll probably want to set this to Sort By > Date Created.

No, you won’t need to have iPhoto running for this to work. Take some screenshots on your iOS devices and they’ll automatically start showing up in this folder. Just keep in mind that a retina iPad screen can take a little bit to make its way through iCloud.

(If you wanted to get especially clever, you could add in pixel height and width metadata to filter screenshots from each device type into its own folder. The trick here is that those will vary with device orientation, so you’ll probably end up using a Raw Query — something like “kMDItemPixelHeight == 2048 || kMDItemPixelHeight == 1536” for retina iPad shots.)


Screenshots are PNG files; photos are JPG files. You’ll have to create another folder from a search for JPG files. It works great!

Make your Mac and iPhone communicate better for FREE

Now that I am FULLY loving my MacBookPro (the most powerful awesome machine I have ever owned!) I am enjoying finding all these cool gems of applications!  This one makes it almost seemless to share information between my MBP and iPhone. COOL – oh and FREE! Details from Lifehacker:

DeskConnect Breaks Down the Barrier Between Your Mac and iPhone

DeskConnect Breaks Down the Barrier Between Your Mac and iPhone

OS X and iOS: We’ve looked at ways to break down the barrier between your Mac and iPhone in the past, but nothing offers quite the seamless experience you get with DeskConnect. Thanks to a lot of clever tricks, the desktop and mobile apps communicate quickly, reliably, and intelligently so you can move data between devices with ease

Most desktop-to-mobile data transfer apps fail to do one of the following things: send information reliably, automatically understand the data being sent, offer shortcuts, work with multiple third-party apps, and stay out of your way. DeskConnect manages all of these things with an interface so simple you rarely even see it.

On the Mac side, you install a menu bar app that can send anything with two clicks or a keyboard shortcut of your choice. If you send a Google Map or directions, the mobile app knows to set up a map or directions in your navigation app of choice. The same goes for web sites. DeskConnect doesn’t expect you to stick with Apple defaults. If you prefer Google Maps or Chrome, you can send data there as well.

Sending data back to your Mac works pretty much as easily but requires a little setup. You have to go through a mildly confusing process to save a bookmarklet to send sites, but once you do it works so well and so quickly that you’ll forget all about it. Sending photos and videos can come from any app, too, as you just need to utilize iOS’ “Open in…” functionality and choose DeskConnect. This makes it easy to transfer files. The only downside is you don’t have easy access to the files themselves. DeskConnect will show them to you, but it hides them in an Application Support folder that isn’t easily accessible.

If you need to transfer data from your Mac to your iPhone and back again, DeskConnect makes the process about as simple as possible and charges you nothing for the service. We’ve seen few first versions of any software work quite so well.

DeskConnect (Free)

Use a Soda Can Tab as a Fish Hook

MacGyver would be proud of this tip – seems like it would work if you are really hungry for a fish and forgot your hook!

From Lifehacker:

So you’re out on the lake, and you’ve remembered to bring the beer but forgotten the food. The quick-and-dirty solution: Try snagging yourself a couple of fish by fashioning an aluminum can tab into a fish hook.

Whether you’re on the run trying to escape Skynet’s army or you’ve just forgotten the hooks on your weekly fishing trip, don’t despair. With just a sharp tool (a multi-tool would be ideal), you can turn any soda can tab into a hook worthy of catching a small fish. If you’re doing this project at home, a file can help you hone the hook to a nice, sharp point. You can even tie a line around the other end of the tab. It’s one of those really cool projects you don’t think you’ll need, but could come in really handy during a bout of forgetfulness (or the inevitable zombie attack). Hit this link for more details from Instructables.