fixed : typing a spiritus asper in an Ancient Greek text on Mac or PC

Question :

I am learning Classical Greek (a.k.a. Ancient Greek) in school, and I want to typ words on my computers (both Mac and PC) to improve my vocabulary.

I found I can add a Greek keyboard layout (on both my Mac and my PC) so I now am able to all Greek letters, but it turns out that this these are Modern Greek letters… these are generally the same, but Modern Greek doesn’t have any of the accents I need in Classical Greek. I especially need to be able to typ the ‘spiritus asper’ (a.k.a. the H-sound accent) and the ‘iota subscriptum’ (a.k.a. the I-sound that can be added to e.g. an Omega).

Is there any way to ‘switch on’ typing Classical Greek on my Mac (and PC) ?

 

Answer :

To be able to typ the accents of Classical Greek, you need to enable the ‘Greek Polytonic’ keyboard.

in macOS, you can activate the Greek Polytonic keyboard by doing this :

  • go to Apple-menu (Apple-icon top-left in the menu bar) –> System Preferences –> Keyboard –> Input Sources (tab)
  • on the left, your currently installed keyboard-layout(s) is/are listed
  • click on the +button just below the list of installed keyboard-layouts
  • in the window that opens, in the Search Field, typ “greek”
  • on the right, two keyboard-layouts will be listed : “Greek” and “Greek – Polytonic”
  • choose “Greek – Polytonic” and click the Add-button
  • then make sure there is a check-mark at “Show Input menu in menu bar”
  • then exit System Preferences
  • now, whenever you want to typ Ancient Greek, go to the little flag-icon top-right in the menu bar and select “Greek – Polytonic” from the dropdown list
  • and after you’re done typing Ancient Greek, go to the little black flag with the Epsilon top-right in the menu bar and select your regular keyboard layout from the dropdown list

in Windows 10, you can activate the Greek Polytonic keyboard by doing this :

  • go to the Start Button bottom-left and typ “region and language” in the search field, then press Enter
  • in the window that opens, at Languages, click “Add a language” and typ “greek” in the search field
  • then, select “Greek”
  • then, at Languages, select “Greek” and click “Set as default”
  • then, at Languages, choose “Greek” and click the “Options”-button
  • now, at Keyboards, click “Add a keyboard”
  • then, choose “Greek Polytonic”
  • to simplify things, I suggest deleting other Greek keyboards from the list of activated keyboards
  • then exit
  • now you can switch between your main keyboard-layout and the Greek Polytonic keyboard-layout by pressing the {WINDOWS}+{SPACE} key-combo on your keyboard

To get the ‘spiritus asper’ (a.k.a. the H-sound accent) in your Classical Greek text, typ this : {SHIFT}+{ ‘ } to get the ‘spiritus asper’, then the A/E/R/V/Y/H/I/O-key to get the Alpha/Epsilon/Rho/Omega/Upsilon/Etha/Iota/Omicron-letter you need underneath the ‘spiritus asper’.

To get the ‘iota subscriptum’ in your Classical Greek text, typ this : {SHIFT}+{ [ } (in which { [ } is the [-key on your keyboard) to get the ‘iota subscriptum’, then the V-key to get the Omega-letter you need above the ‘iota subscriptum’.

To get the ‘regular sigma’ in your Classical Greek text, typ { S }

To get the ‘word-ending sigma’ in your Classical Greek text, typ { W }

to get the ‘Greek question mark’ in your Classical Greek text, typ { Q } which will give you the ; (semi-colon) which is Classical Greek for a ? (question mark).

That’s it !

enjoy 😉

 

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fixed : where to get an OSX driver for Griffin iMate USB to ADB adapter

Question :

I came across an old Mac gamepad that has an ADB (Apple Desktop Bus) connector and I was wondering if it would be possible to use it with my current Mac.

I also found a ‘Griffin iMate USB to ADB adapter’ that enables me to connect the gamepad to my USB-port. Unfortunately, when I connect it, only the joystick directions work, but not the buttons.

Is there anywhere I can get drivers for the Griffin iMate that would work for OSX ?

 

Answer :

Luckily, the WaybackMachine has a rather good backup off the original Griffin website, and most downloads still work. You can find it here :

Griffin iMate Software @WaybackMachine

This includes iMate-drivers for both MacOS9 and MacOSX (both support MacOSX Classic mode, which is MacOS9 running from inside MacOSX).

for MacOS9 driver version 2.7 and earlier versions are available

for MacOSX driver version 1.5.2 and 1.5.3beta are available

Since these are really old drivers, you will have to try if you can still run in your recent version of OSX / macOS.

If they don’t run, you might even be able to use the iMate OS X SDK (Software Development Kit) to create your own 😉

For Windows PCs there are no drivers needed, but keyboards, mice with extended functions will only be partially supported.

enjoy !

fixed : play retro Cuphead game on Mac

Question :

My children have played the ‘ultra-retro Disney’ game Cuphead on their friend’s PC and they love it. So now they want to play it on their own Mac also. Unfortunately there is no Mac version available yet.

What can I do ?

 

Answer :

There are various ways to solve your problem, and they all boil down to trickery to play the Windows game on your Mac : installing Windows (like Bootcamp, Parallels, VM Ware or VirtualBox) or some form of WINE (= the ‘Windows without Windows’-virtualization called “Wine Is Not an Emulator”, like WineBottler, WinOnX or PlayOnMac) or NVIDIA GeForce NOW cloud gaming.

It turns out that the simplest way to get the Cuphead game running on your Mac is this :

  • get (buy) the Cuphead game (Windows 10 version) in the Microsoft Store here
  • find the Cuphead.zip or Cuphead.rar in your downloads and unzip/unrar it
  • make sure you have both the setup_cuphead_xxxxxx.bin and the setup_cuphead_xxxxxx.exe files
  • then get the PlayOnMac virtualization-app here
  • download and install the PlayOnMac-app
  • now, right-click on the setup_cuphead_xxxxxx.exe file
  • in the pulldown-menu, choose “Open with PlayOnMac”
  • now the installation (in an app-like container) will start
  • this will take some time, just ignore any error messages
  • when PlayOnMac asks for the location of the setup_cuphead_xxxxxx.bin file, locate it on your Mac and proceed the installation
  • again, ignore any error messages
  • when PlayOnMac asks you to create a Cuphead game-alias on your Desktop, do it
  • when the Cuphead game-alias appears on your Desktop, it might have an icon of a non-runnable application ; ignore that
  • drag&drop the Cuphead game-alias on the Dock (in most cases, the icon will now change to the yellow-squared Cuphead icon)
  • then exit PayOnMac
  • finally open the Cuphead game-alias in the Dock and the Cuphead game will run

That’s it !

enjoy 😉

Note : depending on your screen-settings, there may be weird looking edges on the top and/or bottom part of the screen while playing the Cuphead game, this is one of the little downsides of using PlayOnMac…

fixed : my Mac can’t unzip this file I’ve downloaded

Question :

Someone just sent me a file over WeTransfer. After downloading it turns out to be a .zip-file, but when I double-click on it to unzip as usual, the Archive Utility does start the unzipping but ends in an error each time, claiming the .zip-file is broken.

I’m pretty sure the .zip-file isn’t broken… what can I do ?

 

Answer :

Even though OSX/macOS’s built-in Archive Utility is your default choice for zipping and unzipping files and folders, it turn out not to be the best choice for unzipping. (Especially .zip-files created on Windows PCs seem to be problematic every now and then…)

The solution is simple : just use an other app to unzip.

There are various payed alternatives like Stuffit Expander and WinZIP, but there’s no need to buy an app for this as most FREE apps ( like The Unarchiver ) will do just fine.

To install & use another app to unzip do this :

  • download a FREE zip/unzip-app from the Mac AppStore
  • after installation, lookup the .zip-file on your Mac ( it will probably still be in your Downloads folder or on your Desktop )
  • right-click on the .zip-file’s icon and select “Open with…” from the pop-up menu
  • then choose your zip/unzip-app from the list
  • …and wait for the file to unzip

That’s it ! enjoy 😉

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fixed : What to do with a winmail.dat attachment ?

Question :

I recently received an eMail that should include various attachments, but it only included one : a winmail.dat file.

When I try to open it, OSX tells me there is no app on my Mac that can handle this file.

What can I do ?

Answer :

There are various ways of solving this. (or rather : ‘handling this’, as fixing the actual cause isn’t something an end user can do)

But first, a little insight into the cause :

Long ago, when eMails were still text-only without layout and attachments were added as plain files, a lot of eMail-client makers wanted to improve their user experience and provide their users a layout-option for eMails. Microsoft then developed TNEF as a protocol for communication between their Outlook eMail-clients. But TNEF never made it into an eMail-communication industry standard. HTML (the web-layout protocol) was adopted as the industry-wide standard. MS Outlook never fully adopted regular HTML as it’s eMail-layout protocol. So, even though Outlook calls them HTML-eMail, they are actually being sent as TNEF-eMail, which is HTML-ish, but still MS Outlook-only…

Sometimes (in the chain of eMail-servers involved in eMail-communication) the sender’s Outlook-app (or MS Exchange client) sends out a TNEF-eMail, not a regular HTML-eMail. All receivers of the eMail that use Outlook (or MS Exchange) will not detect any irregularity, but any recipient who’s not using Outlook as their eMail-client will receive it as a text-eMail with only one attachment : a winmail.dat file.

So… this is not a Mac-problem, it isn’t even a problem for all non-Outlook users, it is just that the only way to prevent this from happening to you, is to use MS Outlook…

…but for most non-Outlook users, using Outlook is not an option…

Anyway… the solution …or rather the various options for solving this, as either the sender can prevent this from happening, or the recipient can find ways to open the windmill.dat file anyway :

Microsoft provides 2 options for the sender who wants to prevent this :

1. set Outlook to only send ‘Plain Text’-eMail to any future recipient :

in Outlook, choose “File” (or “Tools”), then “Options”, then “Mail” (or “Mail Format”), and then in “Compose in this message format”, choose “Plain Text”, then click “OK”

2. set Outlook to only send ‘Plain Text’-eMail to this specific recipient :

in Outlook’s Address Book, double-click on the recipient’s eMail-address, then in the “SMTP – Address” field choose delete (un-click) the check-mark at “Always Send To This Recipient iIn Microsoft Exchange Rich-Text Format”, then click “OK”

More info can be found on Microsoft’s website :

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/290809

Even though prevention is the better option, there are alternatives : if you are a recipient using OSX, you can find various apps to unpack winmail.dat files in the Mac App Store. Too bad, there are no free apps for this in the App Store, but there is a FREE one available here :

TNEF’s Enough

If you prefer an automatically updated app from the Mac App Store, and don’t mind paying for it, consider this one, which will unpack faster and has a more comprehensive and visually nicer interface :

Winmail Extractor

If you also need a winmail.dat unpacker-app for your iPhone and/or iPad, you can consider this one :

Klammer for iOS & OSX

There are FREE services available online also, that will convert your windmill.dat for you instantly. Just keep in mind that by using them, you are enabling these services to view the contents of your eMail and it’s attachments, so you are willingly giving up your privacy in suing them. An example :

winmail-dat.com

But, again : even the windmill-dat.com service itself advices you to prefer a dedicated (offline) winmail.dat conversion app (on your Mac) over the use of their service.

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