Want Full Remote Control Action? Check Out Mira!
Monday's Mac Gadget - Want Full Remote Control Action? Check Out Mira!
by , 8:45 AM EDT, October 6th, 2008
As long as there have been gadgets to control, people have wanted to control them from afar. Apple finally decided to offers users a taste of remote control goodness with the introduction of the Apple Remote. This remote can either control an iPod Universal Dock, or a 2005 or later Mac that has an infrared receiver. Unfortunately, application support is limited. On a Mac, the remote is most useful when accessing the Front Row application. The wealth of other applications on your Mac have little or no remote control support. Fortunately, you can open up the remote control functionality to other applications with Mira.
Mira Preference Pane
Mira allows you to use the Apple Remote with any application. You do this by defining Button Actions for a specific application. These actions are called a profile, and Mira comes with profiles for over 65 applications. This is a great way to see how to define your own profiles, since the default set of buttons may not meet your needs. One trick you'll see is that you can define a DuoPress, where a short click does one thing, and a longer click does another. This makes the six buttons able to act like twelve! Mira also offers a Launch Menu, so that when you press Menu on the remote, rather than run Front Row, you'll see a configurable menu of applications that you can choose to launch.
Don't worry if your Mac doesn't have an IR port, you can purchase the Manta TR1, or use a few different third-party IR receivers. The Mira demo is limited to 30 days of use, up to 10 active applications, and up to 6 launch menu items.
So take full advantage of your Apple Remote, and check out Mira! Have any other gadgets that let you realize you Mac's full potential? Send , and he'll give it a look.
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