During this mornings congressional hearing in which Apple CEO Tim Cook was summoned to address questions in regards to the company’s tax practices, Senator John McCain took the opportunity to ask a very pressing question
Why the hell do I have to keep updating apps on my iPhone all the time?
I’m so glad our taxpayers money is being used to address such important matters.
All joking aside and taking the question completely out of context, McCain’s remarks do reflect a problem with updating apps in general. Whether on Android, iOS, Windows, or Mac, we’re reminded constantly to update our software to their latest version in order to ensure the best user experience. At least, that’s the intention.
Oftentimes than not, we nonchalantly hit that update button just so it would stop bugging us. Recently, I received a notification on my Mac that updates were available.
Great! Download away!
It was an update to Break Time, a Mac app I use to remind myself to take a break from my computer screen periodically. After the update though, the app started acting a bit strange. I have the app configured to run on a 20-minute interval and when it reaches the 10-second mark, a popover would appear from the menu bar, counting down to the impending break. This is great since it allows me to transition from what I’m working on without getting interrupted so abruptly. With the new version installed though, that popover count-down became borked. It would appear sporadically or not at all and the reminders were now incredibly disruptive.
I temporarily quit the app for some time, something which I rarely do; I have it as a login item. However, I didn’t want to stop using it altogether. If only there was some sort of time machine of some sorts that I could use to downgrade to the previous version…
Time Machine! I have one of those things!
That’s when I realized I could restore a previous version of Break Time from a recent Time Machine backup I have stored on my external hard drive. The process is very simple. First, locate the backups folder on your hard drive and navigate to a backup created prior to the update. Copy and replace the application into your Mac’s existing Application folder. If you want to preserve both versions, just change their names or select “Keep both” from the dialog when pasting the app.
From there, I was able to launch the older app without a problem. Looks like I finally found a reason to justify my investment in an external hard drive!