How-to: Get started with Instant Alpha and Smart Lasso in Preview for OS X

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As you may know, Instant Alpha is a feature that allows you to remove an object in an image from its background. You can find this feature in apps like Pages and Keynote, as well as the Preview app that comes built-in on Macs. As we’ve written recently in articles about signatures and marking up images, Preview has a lot of capabilities that don’t get much press.

In this article, you’ll learm how to use Instant Alpha and Smart Lasso to create custom images, remove an object from its background, and some advantages of using Preview to create custom images.

Images created in this way could be used for anything, including fun social media posts. They can be imported into iPhoto, cropped and used in books, calendars, or especially to customize a birthday or greeting card. Depending on what kind of image you want to create, you can really do quite a bit using Preview, Pages and a few other tips and tricks.

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How-To: Start using Maps in OS X Mavericks

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Apple has finally implemented a maps app in the OS X platform, and it seems to have been worth the wait. After being noticeably missing from the system, Maps (and iBooks) are helping achieve a greater consistency between the iOS and OS X platforms. After running the free Mavericks update, the Maps app icon will automatically be added to your dock.

In this guide, we’ll show you how to use the new app for everything from searching for locations to getting turn-by-turn directions set directly to your iPhone.

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Mavericks How-to: Use iBooks for organizing, reading, and shopping

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iBooks was introduced in 2010 for the iPad. With Mavericks, 3.5 years after iBooks came out for iOS, Mac OS X finally gets in on the action. Unlike iOS devices that have to download iBooks from the App Store, the Mac comes pre-loaded with it. This how-to will discuss how to organize and read your books, and how to shop for new books in the iBooks Store.

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Apple announces October 22nd iPad event: ‘We still have a lot to cover’

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Apple has announced that it will be holding its next media event on October 22nd, which is in line with expectations. The event will take place at 10 AM Pacific/1 PM Eastern Time at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco, California.

The event will likely showcase new versions of the iPad, including a redesigned full-sized model that looks like a larger iPad mini and a new iPad mini that boasts a Retina display.

Also in Apple’s pipeline are new iWork suites, a new version of the Apple TV, new MacBook Pros with faster chipsets, OS X Mavericks, and the new Mac Pro. It’s unclear which of the aforementioned products will actually get stage time this time around, but the new Mac Pro, MacBook Pros, and OS X Mavericks are the most likely to appear in addition to the tablets…

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AppleCare begins OS X Mavericks training ahead of likely launch toward end of October

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Apple has begun training its AppleCare support staff on its upcoming OS X Mavericks, according to several sources. These sources say that training has begun today, and support staff will be required to learn about the operating system’s new features, installation process, and troubleshooting options for at least six hours over the course of the next few weeks…

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Apple’s OS X Mavericks release planned for end of October

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Apple plans to release its next Mac operating system, OS X 10.9 Mavericks, at the end of October, according to sources with knowledge of the launch plans.

This comes despite claims and speculation that Apple will release OS X Mavericks and iOS 7 in tandem this month. iOS 7 is set to ship alongside the iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C later in September. There has also been chatter about Apple holding the iPad iOS 7 release back until October.

For the launch of both OS X Lion and OS X Mountain Lion, Apple released the new operating systems the day following an earning results release. Apple traditionally shares its Q4 earnings numbers during the second half of October, so perhaps Apple will release Mavericks the day following its Q4 results announcement…

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