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One Simple Smartphone Trick to Help You Get Things Done Faster

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One Simple Smartphone Trick to Help You Get Things Done Faster

If you are anything like me you use your smartphone constantly. It is the number one electronic gadget that you are never without. Some of us even panic if our phone is not within easy reach 24 hours a day.

Our phones have become our diaries, our address books, our CRMs, our books, our game consoles, our iPods, our note books, our cameras, the list goes on and on. Oh, I forgot, they also make telephone calls.

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Some of us are so wedded to the things that we pick up and play with them, almost as a matter of habit. Not waiting for a beep or some other notification, we grab them, flick through the screens, put them down again and then minutes later do it all again.

One thing we all have in common is how we set up our smart phone screens. We do it in order of importance. The apps you use the most on the home screen, and then other apps you use less often on the others, and some stuck away in folders.

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So, let me share a little trick that I have discovered that has made me more effective and productive, and takes nothing more than a few minutes to set up and use.

In his book ” The Pursuit of Wow!” Tom Peters, who tells a story about putting a dictionary on his hall table. It was a book he wanted to use but seldom did, so he put it on his hall table. Once it was there he passed by it several times a day. And an interesting thing happened. He started using his dictionary more and more often, until it was one of the books he used most often.

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He put something he wanted to use where he always saw it. It become more visible, and as a result was used more often. And the great side effect was that his vocabulary grew.

We all buy and download free productivity apps. Apps that we think if we used them will help us to be more productive. Apps that we install, use a couple of times, put in a folder and forget to use again.

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So, bearing in mind Tom and his dictionary, here is the simple trick that really works.

Re-arrange your smartphone screens to get things done faster

Instead of putting the apps you use most often on the home screen, put the apps that you want to use most there instead. And hey presto, you start to use the productivity apps more often. You read the blogs you never seem to get around to. You organise and act on projects more regularly, you spend more time on personal development, and less on Facebook, Twitter and the like.

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Turn that picking up and flicking into useful, productive and effective time use. Re-arrange your home screen now, and see how much more you get done.

Featured photo credit:  Vector smartphone Icon via Shutterstock

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Last Updated on November 25, 2021

How to Make Private Browsing on Safari Truly Private

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How to Make Private Browsing on Safari Truly Private

There comes a time when we may be searching online and don’t want the browser to remember our footsteps. The reasons don’t always have to be what we obviously think of as the main reason; for example, sometimes, you may not want Safari to remember your passwords or prompt you to enter your password when surfing the web.

Whatever the reason, we may think that we are totally in the clear with Private Browsing on Safari and the other browsers on a Mac. However, a quick Terminal command can bring up every website you’ve visited. How do you do this? Also, how do you clear your tracks for good? We will provide both answers and more today.

    What Does Private Browsing Do?

    When activated, Private Browsing on Safari prevents your browsing history from being kept in the history tab of the application. Along with this, it doesn’t autofill information that you have saved in the browser. In this mode, you essentially become incognito and any references of previous use is essentially hidden when you are in private mode.

    For example: if you are on Facebook or filling out a form and some information or your login is already filled in in the spaces provided, this is called autofill. It’s activated by simply clicking Safari next to the Apple symbol in the menubar and selecting Private Browsing, then clicking “OK” to the prompt.

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    The reasons behind private mode differ for each individual. While we won’t go into all of those reasons, one thing that is  important to remember is that private browsing doesn’t forget the websites you visit. As we will see later on, Macs keep a second copy of the websites you visit in either mode. If you are in frantic mode looking for a solution to this, look no further.

    The Terminal Archive

    While Safari does a good job of keeping your search history out of prying eyes in the history tab, there is a less-than-obvious way to view a full list of visited websites on Mac. This is done in Terminal; the command-line emulator that allows you to make changes to your Mac.

    Terminal is located in the Utilities folder on your Mac. Once activated, simply add the command:

    dscacheutil -cachedump -entries Host

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    Once you hit “enter”, a list of the visited sites appear. Showing only the domains, the sites appear in a format of:

    Key: h_name :(website domain)ipv4 :1

    However, there’s no need to fear—there is a way you can clear this information from Terminal with a command that’s just as simple.

    Clearing Your Tracks

    Just as simply as you were able to enter the command to view the websites, you can clear the cache that Terminal showed you with the comamnd:

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    dscacheutil -flushcache

    As the command denotes, this literally “flushes” the domains from Terminal. This does not prevent the record from continuing to be recorded for future sites, however, so if that’s an issue for you, repeat this process regularly.

    Other Browsers and Private Browsing

    Other browsers have this form of privacy mode for their service. They promise many of the same things as Safari, but they do not have the same Terminal issue due to how this command only presents websites visited on Safari (the browser Macs come shipped with).

    If you use Firefox, you’ll notice that its private mode is also known as Private Browsing. Chrome calls private mode Incognito, while Internet Explorer refers to it as InPrivate Browsing. Opera is the newest to the scene, denoting it as Private Tab. Safari is the oldest well-known browser with this feature.

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    As you can see, despite Private Browsing not being 100% private, Terminal allows for your browser to be. In what ways has Terminal helped your life or allowed you to become more productive? Let us know in the comments below.

    Featured photo credit: Benjamin Dada via unsplash.com

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