Thursday, April 13, 2017

Get Media from iOS Devices to Mac

There are many ways to get photos or movies from iOS device to Mac. For example, using Photos, iMovie or iTunes apps. However, those methods would place media into app's libraries. Sometimes, I may use another Mac or friends Macs where I don't want to save my media.

Here I recommend two methods to do that.

Image Capture

Image Capture is an app come with Mac. You can easily find it from Spotlight.

In order to get media files from iOS device, you need to connect your device to the Mac. Then you will be able to see media files on your devices in Image Capture. The neat thing about this app is that you can also import media files from any other devices, such as camera, Android device, or USB hd.


This method is so convenient that you don't need to a wire to connect your iOS devices to Mac. In order for your Mac to accept files from your iOS devices, you have to set up your iOS Airdrop to Everyone. This can be done easily from iOS mission control panel.

Open your Finder and select AirDrop on left panel. This will make your Mac ready, as an AirDrop point, for iOS to share.

Then you can open your Photo app on iOS. Select photos and movies.  Tap on share button. Finally, select your Mac icon to send files. All shared files will be saved into your Download folder on Mac.

The only restriction is that this method is available to iOS devices.

By the way, AirDrop is also the best way to share media between iOS devices. You will be able to get original media with timestamp, location and other meta data.

Using Automation for Different Text-to-Speechs

I like Mac's Text-to-speech feature very much. Within System Preferences, you can set up a default voice for this feature in Dictation & Speech. Then you can select a text anywhere, for example in Safary, and you can let Mac to read text for you. Since Mountain Lion, Mac OS X provides support for Chinese. I like this feature very much.

However, it is so inconvenient to make changes if I switch between English and Chinese. I want to find out a simple way to change default voice, for example, from Alex to Ting-Ting.

Finally I found a solution. It is actually very easy. Here are steps.

Create A Service by Automator

First, launch Automator from Spotlight. Select service.

In the right panel, add two items to workflow: Service receives selected text, and Speak Text.

Repeat the same steps to create another one with Ting-Ting as voice.

Speak Text by Your Service

After you create above services from Automator, it is ready to let Mac to read text for you. First, you select a selection of English text. Then right click on the selection to bring up context menu. Click on Services and find out your service. For example SpeechByAlex.