5



MacVolPlace
Since 1996 - Tennessee's Macintosh Resource
Macintosh Images
"Where patience fails, force prevails."

 

News Archive

News Archive
  then  
MacVolPlace RSS Archive feed

MacVolPlace News will be on vacation for the next week. See you back here on June 2. -mam

May 23 Friday's News

 

How Steve Jobs taught everyone (even Apple's engineers) to care about design

How Steve Jobs taught everyone (even Apple's engineers) to care about design

What's life really like designing for Apple? An alum shares what he learned during his seven years in Cupertino.

Apple is synonymous with upper echelon design, but very little is known about the company's design process. Most of Apple's own employees aren't allowed inside Apple's fabled design studios. So we're left piecing together interviews, or outright speculating about how Apple does it and what it's really like to be a designer at the company.

Enter Mark Kawano. Before founding Storehouse, Kawano was a senior designer at Apple for seven years, where he worked on Aperture and iPhoto. Later, Kawano became Apple's User Experience Evangelist, guiding third-party app iOS developers to create software that felt right on Apple's platforms. Kawano was with the company during a critical moment, as Apple released the iPhone and created the wide world of apps. -- Co.Design.

Facebook makes default sharing settings more private

Facebook makes default sharing settings more private

In a rare move, Facebook announced Thursday that it will ratchet down the amount of sharing users are defaulted into. Starting Thursday, status updates will no longer be shared to the public automatically; instead, they will be shared only to friends. -- Ars Technica.

Mere possibility of measurement makes QKD protocol secure

Mere possibility of measurement makes QKD protocol secure

Quantum key distribution (QKD) is the mostly-unused, super-secure protocol that even defeats the big nosy ears of the NSA. But QKD is quite difficult to get right. And, just like with classical cryptography, getting it wrong leaves your secrets rather exposed. In QKD, it is not so much that the security of the encryption is guaranteed, but that the secrecy of the key used to encrypt and decrypt information is guaranteed. Because quantum states are used to generate the key, it is possible to determine if a third party is trying to obtain the key. -- Ars Technica.

iMessage problems get worse thanks to server glitch

iMessage problems get worse thanks to server glitch

Anyone who has ever tried jumping from iOS to Android, while keeping the same cell number, will know about the horror of trying to get hold of their messages.

The so-called "iMessage purgatory" means that unless you first deactivate your iMessages before ditching your iPhone, Apple's servers will think that you're using its proprietary messaging platform. The upshot? Say goodbye to your messages. -- Cult of Mac.

Unlock Siri's superpowers with these 5 brilliant tips

Unlock Siri's superpowers with these 5 brilliant tips

While Apple's personal assistant Siri may be irritating to use at times it comes stocked in iOS with thousands of uses. In today's how-to find out how to usefully use Siri in your life with 5 quick and simple tips. -- Cult of Mac.

Make Sure your iPad charger isn't a fake before you burn down your house

Make Sure your iPad charger isn't a fake before you burn down your house

You probably don't waste much thought on where to plug-in your iPhone, but not using a real Apple charger has its disadvantages. Not only are they higher quality, and safer, but they also charge faster than a 5W Chinese knockoff. -- Cult of Mac.

Apple promotes personalized learning with new brain training app

Apple promotes personalized learning with new brain training app

Apple's been big on education under Tim Cook's leadership -- whether that be pushing for iPads in schools around the world, or teaching people to code in Apple Stores.

Apple's latest Editors' Choice in the App Store continues this educational theme, with a brain-training app called Elevate designed to help improve articulation, reading and listening focus, writing abilities, and information-processing speed. -- Cult of Mac.

Apple Preparing iOS 7.1.2 Update, Likely Addressing Email Encryption and iMessage Issues

Apple Preparing iOS 7.1.2 Update, Likely Addressing Email Encryption and iMessage Issues

With just eleven days to go until the expected public unveiling of iOS 8 at its Worldwide Developers Conference keynote, Apple also appears to be working on an upcoming iOS 7.1.2 update, as has also been hinted at by recent statements from the company. Devices identifying themselves as running iOS 7.1.2 and coming from Apple's networks have been showing up in our web logs since last Friday. -- Mac Rumors.

Office for iPad Design Manager Talks About Design Process

Office for iPad Design Manager Talks About Design Process

Microsoft's design manager for Office for iPad has posted an interesting piece discussing the company's design philosophy behind the software.

The software, released back in March, has been well received by both users and critics. It's seen more than 27 million downloads and has already seen a significant update to add features that weren't ready for launch. -- Office Blogs.

Troubleshooting Bluetooth connections in OS X

Troubleshooting Bluetooth connections in OS X

If you use Bluetooth devices such as speakers and headphones, mice, keyboards, and printers with your Mac, there may be instances where you might run into connectivity issues, resulting in regular pauses or other disconnections between your Mac and the device. These can be frustrating to deal with, so if you are experiencing them then there are several ways you can go about increasing the stability of your bluetooth connections. -- MacIssues.

Apple invents a new Robotic Arm Testing System for the iPhone and introduces a new iPhone Antenna that Adds NFC

Apple invents a new Robotic Arm Testing System for the iPhone and introduces a new iPhone Antenna that Adds NFC

On May 22, 2014, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals a new robotic arm system for testing iPhones. Before devices are sold to customers, extensive wireless tests are performed. Testing allows designers to optimize antenna and wireless transceiver performance. Testing also ensures that regulatory limits on emitted radiation levels are satisfied. As smartphones are now being designed with the capability to operate in a large number of frequency bands and using multiple antennas, conventional testing systems are becoming overburdened leading to potential delays. Apple has designed a new testing system that uses a new robotic arm. And while we're on the topic of multiple antennas, another Apple patent surfacing today reveals a new antenna structure that will combine NFC with Non-NFC communications to the same antenna. With Apple recently signing an e-Wallet deal with China UnionPay requiring NFC, Apple's latest NFC invention may very well be making its way to the iPhone 6. -- Patently Apple.

Osmo for iPad combines physical puzzles and games with interactive apps

Osmo for iPad combines physical puzzles and games with interactive apps

Parents who share their iPads with their kids for playing games and other entertainment will want to check out this novel idea from the startup company Tangible Play. The product is a combination of iPad game apps and iPad accessories that use the front-facing camera to connect real world gameplay and interactions with what is happening within the compatible apps. At launch, three apps will be available: Tangram, Newton, and Words. -- TechCrunch.

Apple releases iAd Producer 4.2 with full-screen iPhone banner support

Apple releases iAd Producer 4.2 with full-screen iPhone banner support

Following a series of software releases over the last week including OS X 10.9.3, iTunes 11.2, Safari 7.0.4, and Podcasts for iOS, Apple has Thursday night released a point update to its iAd Producer software in the developer center. The previous update to the software was released earlier this year in March. The update includes, among other improvements, support for full-screen iPhone banner iAd creation. Full release notes.

Podcasts for iOS: Stream, download, and subscribe to podcasts

Podcasts for iOS: Stream, download, and subscribe to podcasts

With Podcasts for iOS, you can stream or download podcasts over a Wi-Fi or a cellular network. You can also subscribe to podcasts that you listen to or watch regularly. -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

How the iPhone Activation Lock hack works

How the iPhone Activation Lock hack works

The recently revealed exploit that allows anyone to bypass the iPhone's Activation Lock system is a rather simple process that requires adding just a single line of code to a computer running iTunes.

The exploit, which is called DoulCi (roughly "iCloud" backward), has already been used thousands of times on locked iPhones and iPads around the world. It's the work of a pair of anonymous hackers, who cracked Apple's theft-deterrent measure by tricking lost or stolen iOS devices into thinking they are being reactivated by Apple's servers. -- Cult of Mac.

iOS 7: Search by Email Attributes

iOS 7: Search by Email Attributes

Within iOS 7, you can find emails that match certain criteria-such as, say, unread messages or those with attachments-very quickly and easily. Within this Quick Tip, we'll reveal the secrets for doing so, with a bunch of examples of the types of things you can find in your email. -- The Mac Observer.

Location Services in Desktop Browsers

Location Services in Desktop Browsers

If a website is "location-aware," it can ask its visitors to share their general geographical positions so it can serve more relevant results. For example, if you are looking for a store or service in your area, a location-aware site might ask for your whereabouts so it can point you to businesses near you.

If you agree to share your location when asked, the browser collects your computer's I.P. (Internet Protocol) address and data from nearby Wi-Fi hot spots. The browser sends these details to a provider like Google Location Services, which can analyze and pinpoint your spot on the map. The browser then shares your location with the site that originally requested it.

If you have privacy concerns, you can decline the request to share your coordinates and receive more general results. If you do not want to be pestered by nosy websites, you can also turn off the location-aware settings in your browser's preferences. Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, Apple Safari and Microsoft Internet Explorer all have controls. -- New York Times.

OS X and Fonts: Apple's Illogical Settings

OS X and Fonts: Apple's Illogical Settings

Last year, I discussed how to make fonts bigger in OS X in a Macworld article. While many of these techniques work, they're not good enough for people who don't have 20:20 eyesight.

I continue to be amazed at some of Apple's settings, or lack thereof. Two of them in particular surprise me. -- Kirkville.

iOS 7: Using your iPhone to get the milk

iOS 7: Using your iPhone to get the milk

Apple's iOS lets you create contextual reminders to do things when you reach places -- great for remembering essential but often forgotten tasks. Apple combines the always-connected nature of its mobile devices with its Reminders app and Location awareness. -- Computerworld.

How Much Cellular Data Does iMessage Use? Here's How to Find Out on iPhone

How Much Cellular Data Does iMessage Use? Here's How to Find Out on iPhone

iMessage sends text messages, pictures, and movies over cellular data rather than through the traditional SMS and MMS protocols, but have you ever wondered just how much of an iPhone data plan all your iMessage use is consuming? It turns out that you can find this information through a somewhat buried location in iOS Settings, and if you're on a bandwidth capped data plan it may offer some actionable data to work with if you regularly find yourself hitting the limits of your cellular plan. -- OS X Daily.

May 22 Thursday's News

 

Apple issues Safari 7.0.4 and 6.1.4 updates to fix WebKit vulnerabilities

Apple issues Safari 7.0.4 and 6.1.4 updates to fix WebKit vulnerabilities

Apple on Wednesday released new versions of Safari for OS X 10.9 Mavericks and OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion, patching two bugs related to WebKit that could allow malicious sites to run code on a user's computer. -- AppleInsider.

Apple renews exclusive rights to Liquidmetal in consumer products into 2015

Apple renews exclusive rights to Liquidmetal in consumer products into 2015

According to an SEC document filed on Wednesday, Apple and Liquidmetal have entered a deal to extend an exclusive license to use the exotic metal in consumer products through Feb. 2015, marking the second time the companies decided to prolong their mutual agreement. -- AppleInsider.

Apple tech uses mechanical shutters to protect sensitive iPhone audio components

Apple tech uses mechanical shutters to protect sensitive iPhone audio components

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on Thursday published an Apple patent application covering an active system that protects sensitive acoustic components like microphones and speakers from damage. -- AppleInsider.

Microsoft already has a good small tablet--it's called the iPad mini

Microsoft already has a good small tablet--it's called the iPad mini

By most accounts, Microsoft was supposed to announce an 8-inch Surface Mini tablet yesterday. This gadget, which would reportedly have used a Qualcomm chip and slotted in below the Surface 2 in Microsoft's tablet lineup, was apparently shelved at the last minute. Most of the outlets that predicted that tablet was coming have since posted a number of different explanations to explain its absence.

Whatever the reason, the upshot is that we have no small Surface tablet. This leaves Windows users who want a smaller device a few different options: they can pick something from one of Microsoft's OEM partners, like the generally solid Lenovo Thinkpad 8 or Dell Venue 8 Pro. But those tablets don't have the third-party app ecosystems that iOS and Android sport, and the benefit of the Windows desktop on a computer with such a small display is dubious at best.

If you want a small-screened tablet with robust third-party application ecosystem, a touch-enabled version of Office, and the ability to connect to and use most of Microsoft's services, your way forward is clear: you should get an iPad mini. -- Ars Technica.

How to adjust your iPhone camera's settings

How to adjust your iPhone camera's settings

Unlike a compact camera or a DSLR, your iPhone doesn't let you adjust the most popular settings: aperture, lens length, shutter speed, and white balance. That said, several tools within the Camera app (and other third-party programs) can aid you in taking very attractive pictures. -- Macworld.

Free up your Mac's precious USB with Thunderbolt Dock

Free up your Mac's precious USB with Thunderbolt Dock

The more I use my MacBook Pro for work and play, the more I need to plug stuff into it. It's got only two USB 3 ports along with its two Thunderbolt ports and HDMI out. Other docks, like the Kanex dock we reviewed a while back, use up one of the two USB ports, and they don't provide video out capabilities. -- Cult of Mac.

OS X Contacts: Printing Out Your Data

OS X Contacts: Printing Out Your Data

Do you have iPhone Brain Syndrome? Symptoms include distraction, checking Facebook approximately every three minutes, and the inability to memorize phone numbers. We can't help with the first two symptoms, but for the last problem, you may want to print out a list of your most important contacts and keep it in your car. This public service announcement has been brought to you by today's Quick Tip. -- The Mac Observer.

How to combine two accounts in OS X

How to combine two accounts in OS X

If you have a second user account on your Mac in which you have done some significant work, you might at some point wish to combine it with your main one. Unfortunately there is no quick way to do this, and will require some manual transferring of files, contacts, and other information, as well as remembering which of these you need to transfer. -- MacIssues.

10.9.3 causing headaches for Mac Pro users

10.9.3 causing headaches for Mac Pro users

Some Mac Pro users have noticed that after updating their systems to OS X 10.9.3, their systems are showing significant graphical artifacts that can impact their work in video editing software packages, especially when exporting video files. -- MacIssues.

In Cybersecurity, Sometimes the Weakest Link Is a Family Member

In Cybersecurity, Sometimes the Weakest Link Is a Family Member

Since I started writing about cybersecurity, I've developed something of a reputation for paranoia.

I set up complex passwords for every website, enable two-step authentication whenever I can, sign up for credit monitoring (thanks to Target) and regularly use secure mobile apps to speak with sensitive sources.

I also cover my computer's web camera with a masking tape, and one night -- during some paranoia-fraught weeks reporting on Chinese hacking -- I even went so far as to move my television out of my bedroom just in case somebody was lurking in my cable box. (In my defense, I'd just covered a case of Chinese hackers lurking in a thermostat and an office printer.)

In short, I have become completely obsessive about protecting my personal data. -- New York Times.

Apple Reveals More Details of their Future Sapphire Cover Glass

Apple Reveals More Details of their Future Sapphire Cover Glass

On May 22, 2014, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals more details relating to sapphire cover glass for future iDevices. Today, Apple's Home Button uses laser cut Sapphire. In the future, it may simply be an extension of the cover glass that will also cover any bezel construction. The use of sapphire cover glass may extend to many products including the iPhone, an iMac, a MacBook (Pro or Air), ultraportable computers and monitor display devices. -- Patently Apple.

Bubble app lets you discover real world items linked to the web w/ iBeacons

Bubble app lets you discover real world items linked to the web w/ iBeacons

Bubble, a new app launching this week, is about to make it super easy for anyone to link real world items to websites using Apple's new iBeacon Bluetooth LE technology. Up until now retailers, event planners, and more have been using iBeacons in order to send relevant notifications to users in proximity, but that required users to actually have that specific retailer's app installed. Bubble, on the other hand, acts as an iBeacon browser of sorts allowing users to discover web content as they come in contact with real world items. -- 9to5Mac.

AirPrint

AirPrint

AirPrint enables instant printing from iPad, iPhone, iPod touch, and Mac without the need to install drivers or download software. Simply select an AirPrint printer and print. It's that simple. -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

Apple pledges to fix longstanding iMessage bug in upcoming iOS update

Apple pledges to fix longstanding iMessage bug in upcoming iOS update

While a bug preventing users from exiting the iMessage ecosystem has prevailed since iOS 5, Apple this week formally acknowledged the issue, and has said that a fix is in the works. -- AppleInsider.

Apple Patent Reveals Future Flexible Displays Incorporating Key Bendable Metal Traces

Apple Patent Reveals Future Flexible Displays Incorporating Key Bendable Metal Traces

On May 22, 2014, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals their ongoing work on future flexible OLED displays. Apple's invention covers the implementation of bendable metal traces that won't break or crack under conditions of the display that require bending or curvature. This supports Apple's patent application regarding hollow structures that include a possible future iPhone. Bendable metal traces represent a key attribute to assist the design of durable flexible displays for future devices. -- Patently Apple.

How to Convert Vinyl to MP3

How to Convert Vinyl to MP3

While some would argue that vinyl is the best audio format, in terms of sound quality, when discussing convenience an MP3 file can't be beaten. In this tutorial, I'll show you how to get the best of both worlds by importing your record collection into iTunes.

It's not a difficult process, but you will need some hardware to connect a record player to a Mac. The most straightforward solution is to use a dedicated USB turntable, like this Audio Technica turntable. If you've already got a record player, an RCA to 3.5mm cable coupled with an inexpensive USB sound card will do the trick. [I did this myself a while back. I used n Audio-Technica turntable which has a USB and RCA connections, Audio Hijack Pro and Fission .] -- Tuts+.

How Does the Apple TV Work?

How Does the Apple TV Work?

A new Apple TV is rumored to launch at some point this year after Apple hasn't touched its set-top streaming box since 2012, but with the third-generation model still a hot item, many users (including myself) are going ahead with an Apple TV and taking advantage of all the cool features anyway. -- GottaBeMobile.

How to Control Your Apple TV Using Your iPhone

How to Control Your Apple TV Using Your iPhone

While the Apple TV hasn't become quite as popular as the iPhone or iPad over the years, it's still a staple in many households and it serves as a vital accessory of sorts to iOS device owners.

The Apple TV can do a lot of neat stuff, but it's practically useless without a remote control. Luckily, it comes with a nifty aluminum-clad remote, but did you know that you can control your Apple with your iPhone or iPad? -- GottaBeMobile.

How to set up, configure, secure, and start using Siri

How to set up, configure, secure, and start using Siri

Siri is Apple's virtual, personal, digital assistant with a personality straight out of a Pixar film. With Siri, your iPhone or iPad can help you do all sorts of amazing things, from keeping in contact, to keeping on time, to keeping informed. But first, you may need to get Siri set up and up to speed. Follow along for a quick walkthrough on how to get started with Siri! -- iMore.

Averting Disaster - A Guide To Computer Backups (2014)

Averting Disaster - A Guide To Computer Backups (2014)

We all store more and more of our lives in digital form; spreadsheets, résumés, wedding speeches, novels, tax information, schedules, and of course digital photographs and video. All of this data is easy to store, transmit, copy, and share, but how easy is it to get back? -- AnandTech.

5 iPhone Camera Tips to Make You a Better Photographer

5 iPhone Camera Tips to Make You a Better Photographer

Many iPhone users rely entirely on the iPhone as their camera of choice, so why not take the best pictures possible? That's what these Camera app tips are for, helping you snap better photos and making you a better photographer by taking advantage of some of the wonderful features that are built into the camera app. -- OS X Daily.

May 21 Wednesday's News

 

Apple updates OS X Server with improvements to Calendar, Messages, and Profiles

Apple updates OS X Server with improvements to Calendar, Messages, and Profiles

Apple on Tuesday pushed a new version of its Server suite for OS X Mavericks with a number of stability improvements and enhancements for the Calendar Server, Messages Server, and Profile Manager. -- AppleInsider.

iWork for iCloud gains collaboration with up to 100 people, support for docs up to 1GB

iWork for iCloud gains collaboration with up to 100 people, support for docs up to 1GB

Apple on Tuesday improved the browser-based versions of its Pages, Numbers and Keynote applications, also known as iWork for iCloud, with support for larger files and more collaborating users. -- AppleInsider.

Apple to pay ISPs for direct iPhone connection

Apple to pay ISPs for direct iPhone connection

In February I blogged about a new group formed inside of Apple last year, tasked with building out their own Content Delivery Network (CDN) to deliver Apple software updates, apps and other Apple related content. Since my post, Apple has been very busy with their build out deploying a lot of boxes running Apache Traffic Server and buying a ton of transit, co-location, wavelengths and other infrastructure services. Their CDN is quickly growing, and it won't be long before we start seeing a portion of their content getting delivered from their new CDN. -- Streaming Media.

OS X 10.9.3 Boosts Maximum VRAM of Recent Retina MacBook Pro and MacBook Air Models

OS X 10.9.3 Boosts Maximum VRAM of Recent Retina MacBook Pro and MacBook Air Models

OS X 10.9.3, released last week, boosted the maximum VRAM used by the Intel HD 5000/5100/5200 graphics chips used in the most recent 2013/2014 MacBook Airs and Retina MacBook Pros.

The change can be seen in the Graphics/Displays section of the System Report accessible via About This Mac. Apple has not yet updated its support page to reflect the new VRAM limits, continuing to list 1GB of system memory as the maximum. The update was also not mentioned in the 10.9.3 release notes. -- Mac Rumors.

The Secret Science of Retweets

The Secret Science of Retweets

There's a secret to persuading strangers to retweet your messages. And a machine learning algorithm has discovered it.

If you send a tweet to a stranger asking them to retweet it, you probably wouldn't be surprised if they ignored you entirely. But if you sent out lots of tweets like this, perhaps a few might end up being passed on.

How come? What makes somebody retweet information from a stranger? That's the question addressed today by Kyumin Lee from Utah State University in Logan and a few pals from IBM's Almaden research center in San Jose. -- MIT Technology Review.

Need an annotated iPhoto slideshow? Turn to Keynote instead

Need an annotated iPhoto slideshow? Turn to Keynote instead

The Ken Burns and Classic slideshow themes let you display captions. And although you could do this by adding some text to each image's Description field within its Info window and then choosing to display the description as a caption, iPhoto will cut off long strings of text rather than wrap them to a new line. Plus, there's no way to add a background shape (a colored rectangle, for example) to help set off the text.

If I were doing this (and I have on a few occasions), I'd turn instead to Apple's Keynote in the following way. -- Macworld.

Tools of the trade: Why I prefer Nisus Writer

Tools of the trade: Why I prefer Nisus Writer

Word processing isn't the most amazing thing a Mac can do. But back in 1991, it was a word processor called Nisus that convinced me to buy my first Mac, because there was nothing like it for PCs. Nisus was my primary application for years, and now--after more than a decade in which it was all but useless to me--this app (now called Nisus Writer Pro) is back on my A-list. Here's why I've re-adopted it, and why I think more people should consider it. -- Macworld.

OS X Mavericks: Using Apple's hidden Wi-Fi Diagnostics tool

OS X Mavericks: Using Apple's hidden Wi-Fi Diagnostics tool

Wi-Fi is essential to most Mac users, but what happens when your network gets sketchy? Apple's hidden Wi-Fi Diagnostics tool should help you improve Wi-Fi performance. -- Computerworld.

How to Turn Off App Nap for All Applications in OS X

How to Turn Off App Nap for All Applications in OS X

App Nap is a feature introduced in OS X 10.9 Mavericks and has helped to boost battery life for portable Macs as well as reduce power consumption for the non-portable variety. While the feature is pretty great, sometimes App Nap can mess with your apps and put them to sleep when you don't want them to be. If you need to turn off App Nap, it can be done on a per-app basis by viewing app information, but that's not a good holistic approach if you're trying to get if off for good.

With a little work, you can shut down App Nap across the board and make your apps behave more like they did in OS X 10.8 and below. Interested? Here's how to turn off App Nap for all applications in OS X. -- Apple Gazette.

How to share Final Cut Pro X Libraries on a network using NFS

How to share Final Cut Pro X Libraries on a network using NFS

Filip Vandoorne has put together a very detailed guide on how to use libraries on an NFS filesystem. Could this be a much cheaper option to Xsan? Is desktop shared storage here?

The solution to use NFS for FCPX project sharing has been known for some time, but the setup of NFS was always some obscure voodoo ritual, easier with Bresink NFS manager, but still... -- fcp.co.

How to Format Your Spreadsheets in Excel with Styles

How to Format Your Spreadsheets in Excel with Styles

When you want to format cells in Microsoft Excel, you can do it manually, by selecting fonts, font color and size, background colors and borders, or you can do the formatting quickly and automatically using styles. If you used styles in other programs, you'll be familiar with the concept: a style is a mixture of formatting that you can apply over and over, like paint.

There are two advantages to using styles:

  • Speed. When you have a lot of cells to format, it's faster to apply a style than to apply all the formatting features individually. And if you need to change a formatting feature of all the cells -- like just the color or the font -- changing the style definition will immediately update the cell formatting.
  • Consistency. When formatting a lot of cells, it's easy to make a mistake and select a slightly different color or font size. But when you apply styles, the exact, same formatting gets applied every time.

Excel has built-in styles that you can use, and you can also modify them and create your own. Here's how. -- Tuts+.

Mac 101: How to add images to an iMessage

Mac 101: How to add images to an iMessage

Adding images to an iMessage on your iPhone is easy to do as there is a "camera" icon right next to the message composition field. On the Mac, though, this option is not readily apparent, leaving many desktop users scratching their head when they want to add a simple image to a message they are writing.

Though it is not intuitive, Messages for Mac does allow you to attach on image to an outgoing message. There are two basic ways -- one uses the Finder, while the other uses the sharing feature that is available in most apps. -- TUAW.

How to turn off the iPhone iOS7 feature that tracks, logs your every location & move

How to turn off the iPhone iOS7 feature that tracks, logs your every location & move

What would you think if someone handed you a piece of paper that showed everywhere you went last week? Imagine it showing what time you went there and for how long.

Is this some scary future? No, it's now....if you have an iPhone. -- WCPO.

The iPad as a Productivity Device

The iPad as a Productivity Device

To be sure, it's absolutely possible to use iPads productively.3 In fact, Apple blogs love to point to examples of people who do use iPads to produce things. And yes, these people exist. There are artists who draw on iPads, and musicians who make music on iPads, and writers who write novels on iPads, and movie makers who cut their movies on iPads. But the fact that you have to point to these people, the fact that there are articles about these people, shows that they're unusual. An artist drawing a painting on an iPad is a novelty. -- Egg Freckles.

May 20 Tuesday's News

 

Apple updates solar patent to include multitouch, flexible displays

Apple updates solar patent to include multitouch, flexible displays

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on Tuesday granted Apple a modified version of a property covering solar panel integration in portable devices, widening the invention's reach to cover electronics with transparent multitouch screens like the iPhone. -- AppleInsider.

Luke! Don't! It's a trap! It's a trap!

Luke! Don't! It's a trap! It's a trap!

 

Apple's iPad Problem

Apple's iPad Problem

My three sons share an Apple iPad given to them by Mimi, their grandmother. When she bought it a couple years ago the iPad was top-of-the-line with 64 gigs and a Retina display. The boys run it hard on car trips where it functions as a hotspot and under covers in their bedrooms along with a couple iPhones, iPod Touches, various Kindles and some cheaper seven-inch Android tablets. In all we have probably a dozen touchscreen devices in the house but most of the action takes place on iPhones or that one iPad. Great for Apple, right? Not really. Apple's iPad sales are dropping you see and the reason nobody seems to talk about is they don't wear out. -- I, Cringely.

That Time Apple Changed Focus From Video To Audio In Record Time

That Time Apple Changed Focus From Video To Audio In Record Time

An interesting piece by Philip Elmer-DeWitt shows that Apple can refocus when necessary, and do so with some pretty amazing results. It's a great look at how Apple operates, especially in light of the rumors that the company is looking to buy Beats. -- Fortune.

Missing features we'd like to see in the next version of OS X

Missing features we'd like to see in the next version of OS X

It's only been about seven months since Apple released OS X 10.9, the latest and greatest version of its Mac operating system. But the yearly upgrade cycle means that unless something unexpected happens, Apple will tell us about OS X 10.10 at the traditional keynote next month on the first morning of its Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC). The operating system is over 13 years old and it's come a long way since those first versions, but it's still not perfect. What areas do we think Apple should focus on in 10.10? -- Ars Technica.

Apple Granted 49 Patents Today Covering the iPhone's Integrated Touch Display, Solar Assemblies, Sensors, Siri & More

Apple Granted 49 Patents Today Covering the iPhone's Integrated Touch Display, Solar Assemblies, Sensors, Siri & More

The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 49 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In this particular report we cover the iPhone's Integrated Touch technology, possible future solar assemblies for the iPhone and the integration of various sensors and the Home Button in iDevices. Apple was also granted their third Siri related patent in 2014 and four design patents. We wrap up this week's granted patent report with our traditional listing of the remaining granted patents that were issued to Apple today. -- Patently Apple.

Mac 101: quickly transform selected text into a new Stickies note

Mac 101: quickly transform selected text into a new Stickie note

The Stickies app on the Mac goes back to System 7.5, believe it or not. And though it remains a part of OS X, I can't imagine it gets much use. Nonetheless, if you happen to be one of the few and the proud who still use Stickies regularly, you'll likely find this tip rather helpful. I'll even go out on a limb and say that this tip is so helpful that it may even create new Stickies users. -- TUAW.

How to Trade in Your Old iPad for a New One

How to Trade in Your Old iPad for a New One

Last week, one of our readers questioned whether it was possible to trade in the now-retired iPad 2 for a few dollars to use on a new iPad. The short answer is yes. Apple has a recycle program that makes it very easy for you to turn in all manner of electronic devices in order to keep gadgets out of our country's landfills. Some devices are still worth a few dollars to Apple and they will give you a gift card that can be used in Apple's retail store to purchase a new on.

We've got a quick tutorial that explains how to go about trading in your older iPad for a shiny new one. -- PadGadget.

May 19 Monday's News

 

Google buys developer of featured iPhone app 'Word Lens'

Google buys developer of featured iPhone app 'Word Lens'

Shortly after the iOS translation app "Word Lens" was featured in a prominent iPhone commercial from Apple, the developer behind the app has been snapped up by rival Google. -- AppleInsider.

Apple fixes hidden '/Users' folder bug introduced in OS X 10.9.3 with iTunes update

Apple fixes hidden '/Users' folder bug introduced in OS X 10.9.3 with iTunes update

Apple on Friday released a minor version update to its iTunes content management software for Mac, bringing a fix for the recently discovered bug introduced in OS X Mavericks 10.9.3 that inadvertently hides the "/Users" folder. -- AppleInsider.

How to shoot anything on your iPhone

How to shoot anything on your iPhone

Here are a few common situations and some tips on how to photograph them successfully. We emphasize basic approaches, but don't be afraid to get creative and capture something unique. -- Macworld.

Steve Wozniak's open letter asks FCC to keep the Internet free

Steve Wozniak's open letter asks FCC to keep the Internet free

Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak has written an open letter to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) concerning the subject of Net Neutrality.

In it, Wozniak runs down his history with telecom and details the various headaches he's dealt with as a result of monopoly companies and government policies. With several examples, Woz points out how innovation and experimentation will be stifled if new rules concerning net neutrality are passed into law. -- Cult of Mac.

Apple Adds Unplayed Feature, Siri Support to iOS Podcasts App

Apple Adds Unplayed Feature, Siri Support to iOS Podcasts App

Along with updates for OS X Mavericks and iTunes, Apple also rolled out an update for its iPhone Podcasts app on Thursday. Podcasts 2.1 added a new Unplayed tab that makes it easier to find downloaded podcasts you haven't listened to yet, and added support for using Siri spoken commands to interact with the app. -- The Mac Observer.

Terminal Magic on Your Mac Using Sips

Terminal Magic on Your Mac Using Sips

There has been a post going around about eight Terminal commands you should know if you're a command line user. This is a great post for those who spend time in Terminal.app, but there's a bonus command that could be super duper handy called sips, for Scriptable Image Processing System. Dr. Drang posted a nice writeup of sips over at his blog, including an example to show how it works. In this case, it was taking a stack of photographs and resizing so they were a nicer size for sending to a client who didn't need the originals. Here I was all set to spend my weekend setting up Automator for some nice resizing action, but instead I can just do this. Wonderful! -- The Mac Observer.

The Most Important Thing to Know About Apple Makes All the Difference

The Most Important Thing to Know About Apple Makes All the Difference

Steve Jobs once talked about how the best ideas derive from intersection of technology and humanities. But when a company exhibits no humanity, what's left? -- The Mac Observer.

Jim Henson: Thought Differently from Sept 24, 1936 - May 16, 1990

Jim Henson: Thought Differently from Sept 24, 1936 - May 16, 1990

On May 16 1990, Jim Henson passed away. He was the man behind the Muppets, and specifically the performer of Kermit the Frog, Rowlf, Doctor Teeth, the Swedish Chef, and Ernie (of Bert and Ernie). Jim Henson and Apple have crossed paths a few times, even though he passed away before the resurgence of Apple. You may recognize him from his Think Different poster, or you may recognize the Apple II that Doc had in his workshop on Fraggle Rock. And the initial ad for the sage colored iMac featured Kermit's signature song "Bein Green" before the ad was pulled. -- The Mac Observer.

How to Really Use the Magical Option Key on the Mac

How to Really Use the Magical Option Key on the Mac

Secret commands and other goodies lurk beneath the Option key on the Mac keyboard. Sandro Cuccia discusses some of the best Option key magic and shows you how to discover more on your own. -- The Mac Observer.

Apple Details Expanded 4K Display Support Included in OS X 10.9.3

Apple Details Expanded 4K Display Support Included in OS X 10.9.3

Apple today updated its 4K display support page following the OS X 10.9.3 update, detailing the enhancements that have been made to 4K display support.

Running OS X 10.9.3, the 2013 Mac Pro and the 2013 Retina MacBook Pro now support several new 4K displays, including the Sharp PN-K321, ASUS PQ321Q, Dell UP2414Q, Dell UP3214Q, and the Panasonic TC-L65WT600. Previously, only the Sharp and ASUS displays were officially supported.

There's a new section on display adjustments and Retina scaling, introduced to allow the resolution of 4K displays to be adjusted much like the display of the Retina MacBook Pro, improving the size and readability of text and other on-screen elements.

The revamped support page also notes that both the Mac Pro and the Retina MacBook Pro are now able to support 60 Hz 4K output for the five supported displays, using multi-stream transport, a feature previously limited to the Mac Pro. With the higher refresh rates, response times for tasks like game playing and video editing will be improved.

You for Sale : Never Forgetting a Face

You for Sale : Never Forgetting a Face

The global business of biometrics -- using people's unique physiological characteristics, like their fingerprint ridges and facial features, to learn or confirm their identity -- is booming.

Joseph Atick, a pioneer of facial-recognition systems, is now cautioning against their unfettered use. Never, he says, should they undermine anyone's choice to remain anonymous. -- New York Times.

Mapping Our Interiors

Mapping Our Interiors

Every building has its own magnetic "fingerprint," and you can figure out what it looks like with the compass of an iPhone. Merge that information with public maps, and we may see a movement to make all our spaces as public as roads. -- New York Times.

Apple Invents a New Visual System to End Phone Menu-Hell

Apple Invents a New Visual System to End Phone Menu-Hell

Last week the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that revealed a new visual dialing method designed for your iPhone that could end audible menu-hell that we now have to deal with when calling a business such as our Cable Company, a bank, a utility company and so forth. Today when calling a business with your iPhone, you have to go through a maze of audio prompts to get you to the right department for assistance or to perform a simple task. This archaic system could one day be replaced with Apple's simple next-generation visual menu system so that businesses will be able to recognize that you're calling from a mobile device and send your iPhone a simple set of visual menu options so that you could determine the speed of the menu prompts that will get you to the right department quickly. The system is designed for businesses to set up via a cloud based service. -- Patently Apple.

Apple Invents a High Voltage Charger at 20 Volts for iDevices

Apple Invents a High Voltage Charger at 20 Volts for iDevices

On Thursday the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals a new high voltage wall charger for iPhones and other iDevices that will be able to surpass today's limiting 5 Volts and go up to 20 Volts as noted in our cover graphic. While we may not be getting a super battery that will provide us with one week's worth of power anytime soon, we can at least look forward to a new power charger for our iPhone (or other iDevice) that will charge it at much faster speeds so as to get us back online. While patent-pending ideas usually take time to get to market, we can only hope that Apple is thinking of delivering this new charger with the upcoming iPhone 6. Can that be done? Only time will tell. -- Patently Apple.

Apple tells AppleSeed folks they'll soon be testing OS X 10.9.4

Apple tells AppleSeed folks they'll soon be testing OS X 10.9.4

Shocker. Now that OS X 10.9.3 has finally been released publicly, Apple has told its AppleSeed testing group (Apple's customer software seeding program) that they will automatically be enrolled in the testing phase for the upcoming OS X 10.9.4. -- 9to5Mac.

The Weakest Link in Online Security

The Weakest Link in Online Security

 

iOS does this but OS X does that: Tracking the inconsistencies between Apple's two OSes

iOS does this but OS X does that: Tracking the inconsistencies between Apple's two OSes

With each new release of iOS and OS X, there are always feature inconsistencies between the two platforms that leave you wondering why. Some of the differences may not appear to be major features, but when used could become a real time saver when using both systems. The following is a rundown of some feature inconsistencies that will hopefully be resolved in the upcoming release. -- Gigaom.

8 Things You Need to Know About Net Neutrality

8 Things You Need to Know About Net Neutrality

As the Open Internet debate intensifies, here's a guide to the FCC, net neutrality, and what's at stake for the future of the Internet.

For many years, net neutrality was a relatively obscure policy topic that mostly preoccupied phone and cable companies, D.C. telecom lawyers, Open Internet activists and a handful of tech firms and startups. Compared to major national issues like the economy, national security, healthcare and immigration, net neutrality barely registered a blip on the American consciousness.

Those days are over. -- Time.

Net Neutrality: Your Cheat Sheet To The FCC's Proposal

Net Neutrality: Your Cheat Sheet To The FCC's Proposal

What you need to know about the FCC's not-exactly-clear approach to keeping the Internet open.

In net neutrality, as in so many other walks of life, what people do is much more important than what they say.

Consider, for instance, FCC chairman Tom Wheeler, who repeatedly insists that the commission's proposed rules for preserving "net neutrality" don't inherently allows for Internet "fast lanes." Such fast lanes--known in FCC parlance as paid prioritization--would allow Internet services providers like Comcast or Verizon charge companies more for faster Internet connections directly to consumers. -- ReadWrite.

Say Hello to Trains, And Watch Your Money

Say Hello to Trains And Games And Say Goodbye To Your Money

Mac users have a few train simulations available, but if you have some room left on your credit card, here's the way to do digital trains the right way. It's called Trainz Simulator 2. Don't think of this as a Mac game about trains. It ain't. Trainz is a 3D train simulator which lets build and operate an entire railroad (or railroads, as in plural) right on your Mac's screen. -- BohemianBoomer.

The Elements: Flashcards - Quizes and Tables for Chemical Symbols on iOS Devices

The Elements: Flashcards - Quizes and Tables for Chemical Symbols on iOS Devices

An app, with the name The Elements: Flashcards, has been developed by Touch Press LLC, a London company with a number of other education apps available.

While it is aimed at students revising for exams, it could be used as a useful tool for anyone who needs to refresh their knowledge. Having run it a couple of times on the iPhone and iPad, I also see ways in which it could be used for classroom activities. -- eXtensions.

Reviving an Original iPhone, Part 1

Reviving an Original iPhone, Part 1

A few months ago I bought an original iPhone. It was listed as spares and repairs, and while it powered up, it did look in a sorry state. The screen was smashed, and the LCD had some large patches of grey pixel outage, although the screen worked fine. The power button didn't work, but everything else worked on it. -- Low End Mac.

How to Fix the Most Common iMessage Problems

How to Fix the Most Common iMessage Problems

Apple's iMessage is a great way to get around text messaging fees and send messages to other Apple users for free, but it's not without its problems. Unfortunately, unlike traditional SMS, the problems don't seem to magically work themselves out on their own, so here's how to fix some of the more common issues you might come across. -- Lifehacker.

6 tips for making email less miserable

6 tips for making email less miserable

It should have been the best business tool since the telephone. Instead email has become the biggest time-waster since television. -- FT.

Grace Hopper, UNIVAC, and the First Programming Language

Grace Hopper, UNIVAC, and the First Programming Language

It weighed 13 tons, had 5,200 vacuum tubes, and took up a whole garage, but the UNIVAC I was an incredible machine for its time. Memory was provided by tanks of liquid mercury, while the clock speed was a whopping 2.25 MHz. The UNIVAC I was one of the first commercial general-purpose computers produced, with 46 shipped. Learn its fascinating instruction set, and also check out FLOW-MATIC, the first English-language data processing language created by American computing pioneer Grace Hopper. -- Linux Voice.

May 16 Friday's News

 

Apple releases OS X 10.9.3 with improved support for high-res 4K displays

Apple releases OS X 10.9.3 with improved support for high-res 4K displays

Apple on Thursday released OS X 10.9.3, a minor update for its Mavericks Mac operating system, bringing improved 4K display support for the latest Mac Pro and 15-inch MacBook Pro, along with other bug fixes and improvements.

OS X 10.9.3 is now available to download through the Mac App Store. Apple says the update is recommended for all Mac users, and that it improves the stability, compatibility and security of the operating system.

Other additions and changes in OS X 10.9.3 are:

  • The ability to sync contacts and calendars between a Mac and an iOS device using a USB connection
  • Improved reliability of VPN connections using IPsec
  • Safari 7.0.3 is also included
  • While the update introduces a "Retina" output mode for the late 2013 15-inch MacBook Pro, it does not grant the same ability to the 13-inch model. Apple's current Thunderbolt Display does not come with a 4K resolution, meaning the support is only available for third-party monitors.

    OS X 10.9.3 had a particularly long beta period, with nine pre-release builds being provided to developers before Thursday's official launch to the public.

    The launch of OS X 10.9.3 comes less than a month after Apple opened up its beta seed program to all users in exchange for "quality and usability feedback." The program allows anyone, not just Mac developers, to test pre-release versions of OS X.

Personal OS X Mavericks 10.9.3 (13D65) Benchmarks

Personal OS X Mavericks 10.9.3 (13D45a) Benchmarks

Xbench 1.3 benchmarking of my Intel iMac (2.9 GHz Intel Core i5, 16GB 1600 MHz DDR3 SDRAM, Graphics NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M 512 MB, 1TB Fusion Drive). I have been running this version for some time without any problems. Your mileage may vary.

Intel iMac
10.8.3 10.8.4 10.9 10.9.1 10.9.2 10.9.3
Over All 404.20 369.59 420.65 414.84 403.94 400.43
CPU Test 293.19 291.97 345.62 343.08 340.38 333.16
Memory Test 707.37 693.217 709.14 697.02 713.01 687.54
Quartz Graphics Test 555.75 554.89 502.16 493.53 496.34 486.46
OpenGL Graphics Test 246.96 204.78 275.32 274.18 254.66 257.17
User Interface Test 432.70 442.57 460.25 442.55 458.35 437.97
Disk Test 537.72 412.91 462.13 458.57 418.40 434.67

iTunes 11.2 released for Mac, Windows with improved podcast browsing

iTunes 11.2 released for Mac, Windows with improved podcast browsing

Apple's iTunes media suite was updated on Thursday with improvements for browsing the Podcasts section of the software, allowing users to more quickly find episodes they haven't listened to [update: a corresponding update for the iOS Podcasts app is also available].

With iTunes 11.2, the application gains a new "Unplayed" tab in the Podcast section, listing content that a user has not listened to yet. The update also includes the ability to browse episodes that are available to download or stream in the "Feed" tab.

Further improvements for podcast listeners include the ability to automatically delete episodes once they have been listened to. Users an also save their favorite episodes so they can ensure they are saved on their computer.

Update: Apple on Thursday also updated Podcasts for iOS to version 2.1. The update adds improved browsing, Siri support, CarPlay compatibility, and the ability to share links with AirDrop.

The iTunes update also addresses an issue where iTunes might become unresponsive when updating recommended songs through Genius. It also is said to improve overall performance and stability, while Apple recommends that users have Podcasts for iOS 2.1 or later for syncing podcast episodes.

iTunes 11.2 is a free update available for both Mac and Windows PCs. It can be updated on OS X through the Mac App Store, while direct downloads are available from Apple's website.

With iTunes Connect 3.0, Apple is one step closer to bringing an iOS 7 look to all its apps

With iTunes Connect 3.0, Apple is one step closer to bringing an iOS 7 look to all its apps

Apple on Thursday unveiled a new revision to its developer-focused iTunes Connect app for iOS, sporting an all-new design and the ability to manage multimedia content in the iTunes Store and iBooks Store alongside apps on the App Store. -- AppleInsider.

Atom-sized, bendable graphene touchscreen tech seen as potential key for future Apple devices

Atom-sized, bendable graphene touchscreen tech seen as potential key for future Apple devices

Rigid glass touchscreens may give way to bendable, foldable portable displays in the future, thanks to utilizing graphene -- an advanced technology that has generated interest from Apple, Samsung and others. -- AppleInsider.

Skylock prevents theft while letting you share your bike

Skylock prevents theft while letting you share your bike

Having a bike stolen is a terrible feeling, and in the hive of scum and villainy known as the United States, it happens 1.5 million times every year. Being able to share your bike with friends while always knowing right where it is, and getting a push notification if it's been in a crash or someone is messing with your lock--that would be pretty great. That's what Skylock thinks too. -- Macworld.

Troubleshoot Mac network issues with Network Utility

Troubleshoot Mac network issues with Network Utility

This is senior editor Dan Moren. We take networking for granted these days, but it's still a complicated beast. If you want to go under the hood, Apple includes a suite of tools on your Mac to help you troubleshoot networking issues; they're all included in the Network Utility app, which you can find in System/Library/CoreServices/Applications--though it's probably easier to simply type "Network Utility" into Spotlight.

When you first launch Network Utility, you'll see a single window with a variety of tabs, each of which offers different information. The first tab, Info, provides information about your own computer, offering a drop-down menu of all your network interfaces--for example, if you have both wired ethernet and Wi-Fi connections. When you select one, you'll see the Hardware Address, associated IP, speed, and information about how much data is going in and out of that particular connection. Most often you'll refer to the info here when troubleshooting issues -- Macworld.

OS X 10.9.3: Unhiding the Users folder

OS X 10.9.3: Unhiding the Users folder

One unexpected consequence of the recent OS X 10.9.3 update is that the Users folder at the root level of the startup volume is hidden from some users, though not all. I was among them. When installing the 10.9.3 update available from the App Store on both my 2009 Mac Pro and late 2012 MacBook Air, the Users folder was indeed missing. Yet I've heard from a couple of colleagues and several people on Twitter that their Users folders remain visible.

Thinking that this might be attributable to the kind of update I performed I downloaded the Mac OS X Mavericks 10.9.3 (Combo) update and installed it on my MacBook Air with the hope that it would fix the issue. Regrettably, it didn't. The Users folder on that Mac remains missing. I even tried switching user accounts on the laptop with no luck. Regardless of which I tried, the Users folder was nowhere to be found. -- Macworld.

Ten rules for great iPhone photography

Ten rules for great iPhone photography

The big challenge when you shoot images with an iPhone is to successfully capture great-looking photos from a gadget that's primarily designed for chatting. If you keep these tips in mind as you shoot, however, you can take some pretty sharp pictures. -- Macworld.

Fun + Thunderbolt = Funderbolt!

Fun + Thunderbolt = Funderbolt!

Thunderbolt has many practical uses, but this article is not about being practical. While reviewing the new Mac Pros, we in the Macworld Lab began thinking about fun things to do with those six included Thunderbolt ports. -- Macworld.

Prompt melds yesterday's command line with today's iOS

Prompt melds yesterday's command line with today's iOS

No matter how hard we try, we can't escape the command line. It lurks beneath our modern operating systems, just waiting for the right moment to strike. But if you can't beat 'em, join 'em, I say--how else to explain my latest pick for an iOS app I love, Panic's Prompt.

Now, it may be that you have no need for Prompt. That's okay, it can be a bit on the niche side. But should you ever have a need for using telnet or secure shell (SSH) from your iOS device, let it be known that Prompt is where it's at. Me, I've used Prompt for everything from logging into my remote Web server to fix a problem on a personal website to connecting to my home computer while I'm thousands of miles away in order to locate a particular file. -- Macworld.

I tried split-screen multitasking on the iPad, and here's what I discovered

I tried split-screen multitasking on the iPad, and here's what I discovered

Almost from the start, iPad users have begged and pleaded with Apple to add a missing feature: split-screen multitasking.

Split-screen multitasking is the ability to run two or more apps simultaneously, side by side, just like you can on a desktop computer. But iOS, of course, is the antithesis of traditional multitasking. You can have only one app on the screen at a time. -- Cult of Mac.

Did the NSA help kill UWB?

Did the NSA help kill UWB?

Revisionist history is looking back at past events in light of more recent information. What really happened? And no recent source of information has been more important when it comes to revising the history of digital communications than former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor Edward Snowden. Today I'm really curious about the impact of the NSA on the troubled history of Ultra Wide Band (UWB) communication. -- I, Cringely.

Apple Patent Turns Your iPhone into a Personal Assistant

Apple Patent Turns Your iPhone into a Personal Assistant

A patent application from Apple published on Thursday shows the company is looking at ways to turn your iPhone into a personal assistant that learns from your actions. The patent describes how your iPhone could change the way it displays information and apps based on your habits or mood, and how it could anticipate your needs based on your activities. -- Patently Apple.

The four largest carriers now support texting 911, but most emergency call centres don't

The four largest carriers now support texting 911, but most emergency call centres don't

When the FCC set a voluntary deadline of yesterday for putting in place technology to allow people to text 911, all four of the main national carriers complied. But since most emergency call centres aren't yet equipped to receive texts, don't expect to be using it any time soon. -- 9to5Mac.

Apple No Longer Allows Searches of its Support Site

Apple No Longer Allows Searches of its Support Site

I have a link I have used for a very long time (http://support.apple.com/kb/index?page=search) that took me to Apple's support site to allow me to search for things. This no longer works. Plus if you enter anything in the search box on that page it will not find anything. (Yes, I have to look up things, just like you do.) I wish this was temporary but given Apple's change from openness to "we know what is good for you" I am afraid it is not. Sadness.

Apple No Longer Allows Searches of its Support Site

It seems that the only way to find out what is happening is to read MacVolPlace (Smile) or subscribe to one of Apple's RSS feeds. Just remember these are feeds from Apple and you will still not be able to search the database.

Mass-deleting iOS music, tracking playlists, and an empty year

Mass-deleting iOS music, tracking playlists, and an empty year

In this week's column, I take a look at a number of questions covering the full range of iTunes conundrums. How do you mass-delete music on an iOS device? What playlist is a song in? Why aren't my Harry Potter movies in order? And how can I find tracks where the Year tag is empty? -- Macworld.

OS X Security: Encrypting External Disks

OS X Security: Encrypting External Disks

In this tip, we're going to discuss how to keep data stored on external disks safe (and the steps you'll use for different versions of OS X). If you've got drives just lying around with important data on them, then this feature'll help you worry less about theft or loss. Less worrying is a very good thing! -- The Mac Observer.

How to Create an Out of Office Email Reply with iCloud

How to Create an Out of Office Email Reply with iCloud

Anyone with experience working in an office setting should be familiar with 'out of office' replies. These messages automatically reply to incoming email, letting senders know that a recipient is on vacation or otherwise unavailable. The corporate email servers that businesses rely on often enable out of office functionality for users, but did you know that you can set up your own out of office message with Apple's iCloud? Here's how it works. -- TekRevue.

How to quickly hide desktop icons

How to quickly hide desktop icons

You can, of course, by apps that will do this but why bother when the command to do it is built into OS X? You can use the following terminal commands to hide all icons on the desktop without deleting or moving the files stored in the desktop folder.

This command will remove the icons:

defaults write com.apple.finder CreateDesktop -bool false && killall Finder

While this second one will restore all the icons:

defaults write com.apple.finder CreateDesktop -bool true && killall Finder

Airmail: Because Something Needs To Be Done With Email

Airmail: Because Something Needs To Be Done With Email

If there's a Mac app we love to hate it's Mail. Not so much because Mail is bad. It's not. It's that email should be easier to handle than it is and OS X's Mail doesn't help enough to remove the stigma that email is the killer app of the internet era.

After having switched to different email apps every year for six years (Claris Emailer, Eudora, Entourage, among others), I settled on Apple's default email app, Mail. Over the years Mail has improved, put on the weight of new features, and I've organized my mailboxes into something of an archive.

It's time to change email again. -- McSolo.

You Can Cancel Out of the 'Compressing Video' Process when Sending Movies from iOS

You Can Cancel Out of the 'Compressing Video' Process when Sending Movies from iOS

If you send a lot of photos and video from an iPhone or iPad to friends and family, you've probably noticed that sending a movie brings up a curious looking pixelated black and white "Compressing Video" screen where the video is being squeezed down to a smaller size. If the video you're trying to email is fairly large, this compression process can take a very long time staring at that curious looking screen, rendering some users to think their device has crashed -- that is not the case. Aside from that, the resulting compression can be so strong that the video quality is dramatically reduced to the point of being generally undesirable. Fortunately you don't have to get stuck waiting for the compression task to complete, and you can cancel the process easily, quickly returning to your normal iOS device usage. -- OS X Daily.

May 15 Thursday's News

 

iHealth: Meet the new wearable 'dream team' Apple hired from fashion, fitness & medicine

iHealth: Meet the new wearable 'dream team' Apple hired from fashion, fitness & medicine

As Apple gears up for a new battle in the hotly-contested wearables market, AppleInsider offers a look at the platoon of fashion, fitness, and medical experts that have come to work in recent months for Cupertino's largest taxpayer. -- AppleInsider.

New Apple technology helps prevent misdirected messages and emails

New Apple technology helps prevent misdirected messages and emails

An Apple invention published on Thursday illustrates a simple yet effective way to remind a user of who is on the other end of a text message or group chat, a problem that is the bane of people who juggle multiple conversations at once. -- AppleInsider.

Watch out for data caps: Video-hungry cord cutters use 328GB a month

Watch out for data caps: Video-hungry cord cutters use 328GB a month

The average cord cutter--a person who watches online video instead of subscribing to a cable TV package--isn't all that far away from going over the typical data usage limits enforced by Internet service providers. -- Ars Technica.

Storing two keyboard layouts in your brain at once: It's possible

Storing two keyboard layouts in your brain at once: It's possible

During my recent attempt to learn the Dvorak keyboard layout, my goal was to remain proficient in QWERTY, trying to store both layouts in my brain and be able to eventually use them both equally. At the outset, it seemed like it would be impossible to store two ways of using the same complex object in my brain at once. And though some successful switchers warned me that it might be impossible, some preliminary research shows that it may be doable after all. -- Ars Technica.

Driven by necessity, Mozilla to enable HTML5 DRM in Firefox

Driven by necessity, Mozilla to enable HTML5 DRM in Firefox

Mozilla announced today that it will follow the lead of Microsoft, Google, and Apple and implement support for the contentious HTML5 digital rights management specification called Encrypted Media Extensions (EME). -- Ars Technica.

Mad at the FCC? Use this code to create your own "slow lane" on the Web

Mad at the FCC? Use this code to create your own

The Federal Communications Commission is scheduled to vote on a controversial "fast lane" proposal Thursday, and it's inspired a bunch of people to protest by slowing down their own websites. -- Ars Technica.

Rebel Desk makes standing or sitting at work easy and optional

Rebel Desk makes standing or sitting at work easy and optional

Sure, the health benefits of not sitting all day are substantial, even if the positives of standing all day are inconclusive. The trick, it seems, is to change position often, or maybe even to walk while you work.

The Rebel Crank-Up 1000 standing desk is a boon to those who want to be able to work in an erect posture but still sit down when they need to; sitting improves fine motor control and lessens leaning, for example. -- Cult of Mac.

OS X: Working with Pictures in Your Web Browser

OS X: Working with Pictures in Your Web Browser

No matter what browser you use, there are some neat built-in options that you've got for saving and working with the images you run across. In this Quick Tip, we'll cover what you can do and how, and Melissa Holt has promised us a little bonus tip for saving pictures, as well. -- The Mac Observer.

Switching from iPhone? Don't Expect Your Text Messages to Follow You

Switching from iPhone? Don't Expect Your Text Messages to Follow You

If you switched from an iPhone to an Android smartphone and stopped receiving text messages from your iPhone-toting friends, you aren't alone. Even worse, Apple is aware of the problem, but apparently has no idea how to fix it. -- The Mac Observer.

OS X Mavericks: Add a Signature to PDF with Preview and FaceTime Camera

OS X Mavericks: Add a Signature to PDF with Preview and FaceTime Camera

Way back in prehistoric time, well 2011 as it were, TMO published a Quick Tip on how to use OS X Lion and the Mac's FaceTime camera to photograph a signature and then add it to a PDF document in the Preview app. The procedure has changed ever so slightly, so we thought it time to update the tip. -- .

Apple Working on Next-Generation Ambient Light Sensor System

Apple Working on Next-Generation Ambient Light Sensor System

On May 15, 2014, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals their work on a next generation ambient light sensor system that will improve display clarity on iDevices when in bright environments. -- Patently Apple.

Troubleshoot Your Mac With These Hidden Startup Options

Troubleshoot Your Mac With These Hidden Startup Options

Troubleshooting a Mac is different from troubleshooting a PC, but not all that different. Use your Mac's built-in startup options to test your hardware, boot in safe mode, reinstall Mac OS X, and perform other system tasks.

To access one of these tools, you'll first have to shut down or restart your Mac. You'll then have to press and hold the appropriate key or key combination before the gray startup screen appears. Press the keys right after the startup sound plays. -- How-To Geek.

Apple working on more resilient microphones in iPhones, iPads

Apple working on more resilient microphones in iPhones, iPads

Apple has applied for a patent (number 8,724,841) with the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office for a "microphone with acoustic mesh to protect against sudden acoustic shock." It's designed to protect the microphone in iDevices such as the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. -- Apple Daily Report.

Apple wants to help iMovie users create better Videos

Apple wants to help iMovie users create better Videos

Apple has been granted a patent (number 8,726,161) by the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office for "visual presentation composition." The goal is to help amateurs creating videos in iMovie and Final Cut Pro X product movies that aren't, in Apple's words, "unduly long, disjointed, confusing or just plain boring." -- Apple Daily Report.

How to remove a phone number from iMessage

How to remove a phone number from iMessage

Earlier today, we talked about something called the iMessage purgatory syndrome. A common problem for one-time iPhone users that have since switched to an Android-based smartphone or other device is that their phone number is still linked to iMessage. The person might then be unable to receive messages from other iPhone users, since the iMessages are never able to be delivered.

Apple is aware of the issue, and has a team of engineers tasked with identifying a solution. In the meantime, if you are someone in this situation, there is actually a very simple method to disassociate your phone number with iMessage. It will take just a few minutes or less. Read ahead for step-by-step instructions on how to remove a phone number from iMessage... -- iDownload Blog.

iPhone 101: How to easily combine multiple iMessages into a single message

iPhone 101: How to easily combine multiple iMessages into a single message

Have you ever received a series of iMessages with important information that you need to share with someone else? You could forward each iMessage separately and spam your recipient. You also could copy and the contents of each message and then paste them into another message, but that is time consuming. Or you could use our tip below to quickly combine multiple messages into a single message that can be forwarded to a third party.

Here is how you can combine several iMessages into one message that is ready to be sent to someone else. -- TUAW.

Antivirus is dead? If you think that's news, you've been living in a different world

Antivirus is dead? If you think that's news, you've been living in a different world

With the continuing rise of cloud services, security execs have been proclaiming the death of antivirus software. But, according to F-Secure, the security is not so much dead as changed beyond all recognition. -- ZDNet.

May 14 Wednesday's News

 

Apple remains mum as complaints mount over 2011 MacBook Pro GPU failures

Apple remains mum as complaints mount over 2011 MacBook Pro GPU failures

With an increasing number of early-2011 MacBook Pros suffering from what appears to be similar issues relating to built-in discrete AMD video cards, owners are now calling for a replacement program. -- AppleInsider.

Apple releases iOS Human Interface Guidelines on iBookstore

Apple releases iOS Human Interface Guidelines on iBookstore

Apple on Tuesday made an iPad-friendly version of its latest iOS Human Interface Guidelines reference material available to the public as a free download through the iBookstore. -- AppleInsider.

Logic Pro X gets enhanced 12-core Mac Pro support, over 300 new features and fixes in update

Logic Pro X gets enhanced 12-core Mac Pro support, over 300 new features and fixes in update

Apple on Tuesday rolled out a substantial update to its Logic Pro X professional music production software with various UI tweaks, bug fixes and, most notably, improved support for the company's top-end Mac Pro. -- AppleInsider.

Podcasting: How To Create a Noise Gate on Your Mac

Podcasting: How To Create a Noise Gate on Your Mac

One of the most annoying things for podcasters and their listeners is when one participant's background noise is noticeable even when that person isn't talking. A noise gate can easily solve this problem by only allowing sound through when the input volume reaches a certain level. Follow the simple steps in this video and the next time you're on an interview podcast (or recording one), you'll sound fantastic! -- The Mac Observer.

Can Thunderbolt Survive USB SuperSpeed+

Can Thunderbolt Survive USB SuperSpeed+

The USB SuperSpeed+ spec (a.k.a. v3.1) offers up to 10Gbps throughput. Combine that with USB's new C-Type Connector, the specification for which is expected out in July, and users will have a symmetrical cable and plug just like Thunderbolt but that will enable up to 100 watts of power depending on the cable version. So where does that leave Thunderbolt, Intel's other hardware interconnect? According to some analysts, Thunderbolt withers or remains a niche technology supported almost exclusively by Apple. Even as Thunderbolt 2 offers twice the throughput (on paper) as USB 3.1, or up to 20Gbps, USB SuperSpeed+ is expected to scale past 40Gbps in coming years. 'USB's installed base is in the billions. Thunderbolt's biggest problem is a relatively small installed base, in the tens of millions. Adding a higher data throughput, and a more expensive option, is unlikely to change that,' said Brian O'Rourke, a principal analyst covering wired interfaces at IHS. -- Computerworld.

No Correlation Between Heat and Hard Drive Failure

No Correlation Between Heat and Hard Drive Failure

The folks at online backup service Backblaze have once again taken a statistical look at their hard drives to find out if they're affected by temperature.

The results seem to counter our general recommendation to give hard drives plenty of ventilation room in TidBITS' "The Care and Feeding of External Hard Drives" (28 April 2014).

Overall, Backblaze found no correlation between heat and failure rates, with one exception: the Seagate Barracuda 1.5 TB drives, which failed slightly more often when run at higher operating temperatures. But the Hitachi drives surveyed actually failed a bit more frequently at cooler temperatures.

In any case, it's still important to run drives within their specified operating temperatures, which means giving them sufficient ventilation. As long as you don't block cooling vents or put them in insanely hot environments, they should not be adversely affected.

Review all types of 3D files with this free new Autodesk app for iOS and Mac

Review all types of 3D files with this free new Autodesk app for iOS and Mac

Today Autodesk launched FBX Review for Apple Mac OS X and iOS 7. The free standalone app gives professional artists and animators a powerful, lightweight tool to conduct detailed reviews of a wide range of 3D assets, including detailed 3D models, environments and character animations. -- 9to5Mac.

Columbia University students create software allowing native iOS apps to run on Android devices

Columbia University students create software allowing native iOS apps to run on Android devices

For some time now, iOS users have cited the quality and quantity of third-party software available for the platform as an important factor in their choice of mobile devices. Over the years Android has amassed its own collection of apps and users have continued butting heads over which system had the better selection.

Now, six Columbia University students have bridged the gap between the two platforms with something called Cider. Not to be confused with the other Cider software (for OS X), the Android version of Cider essentially fools iOS applications into believing they're running on an actual iPhone or iPad. -- 9to5Mac.

A Few Words On Mac Security, Little Snitch, And Apps That Phone Home

A Few Words On Mac Security, Little Snitch, And Apps That Phone Home

For the most part, especially when compared to Windows versions going back to XP and beyond, OS X for Mac has a good security record. Despite more Mac users now that ever, despite the Mac holding its own as PC sales drop in the post-PC era, and despite growing sophistication of malware, Mac users have far less security issue to worry about that Windows PC users.

After all, Apple ships each Mac with OS X's firewall turned off. OS X is based on various flavors and components of Unix whose permissions structure makes the Mac difficult to hack and difficult to do much damage should it be hacked. As most tech support people will tell you, 'the biggest problem in security is the person using the keyboard.' -- McSolo.

iPad for the Windows Guy

iPad for the Windows Guy

With Microsoft getting serious about supporting rival mobile platforms, Apple's magical tablet is a suddenly perfectly acceptable mobile device for the Microsoft-focused information worker. And thanks to some coming management functionality, it's going to get even better in the near future. My, how things have changed. -- Paul Thurrott's SuperSite for Windows.

When it comes to iOS productivity, delight can trump efficiency

When it comes to iOS productivity, delight can trump efficiency

As mobile devices continue to march towards dominance over traditional computers, there's been no end of discussions about productivity. People argue against iPads and iPhones as productivity tools--not that getting work done on the iPad or iPhone is impossible, but rather that it's more tedious. But to my mind, the argument's really not about productivity at all: It's about efficiency. -- Macworld.

May 13 Tuesday's News

 

iPad charger teardown: Inside Apple's charger and a risky phony

iPad charger teardown: Inside Apple's charger and a risky phony

You can get a counterfeit iPad USB charger for a lot less than Apple's, but this teardown comparing the two shows that there's no comparison, especially if you prefer to avoid starting fires. -- Ken Shirriff's blog.

How to mute annoying Twitter users, and why you'd want to

How to mute annoying Twitter users, and why you'd want to

Twitter's new mute function offers a way to ignore your annoying friends while still pretending you like them. -- Macworld.

Square's new Order app lets you skip the register altogether

Square's new Order app lets you skip the register altogether

Square has been at the forefront of mobile payments for years now, thanks largely to the popularity of its white card reader that's used by merchants everywhere.

Now the company is debuting a brand new app called Square Order, and it does away with the need for a cash register completely. The introduction of Square Order also means the death of Square Wallet, a failed experiment that Order hopes to correct. -- Cult of Mac.

How to add new photos to existing albums on your iPhone

How to add new photos to existing albums on your iPhone

It's easy to quickly fill up your camera roll on your iOS device with tons of different photos. While you have photos of different types and categories, creating albums is good to maintain a sort of organization and sanity on your device. In today's episode of Cult of Mac's how-to learn how to add new photos to your existing albums and more. -- Cult of Mac.

NFC for iPhone: The Rumor that Keeps on Giving

NFC for iPhone: The Rumor that Keeps on Giving

Apple is reportedly bringing NFC, or near field communication, technology to the iPhone 6, and has a payment deal in place with China UnionPay. NFC rumors appear ahead of every iPhone launch, so it isn't any surprise to see them popping up again, but claiming Apple has a payment service deal in place with China's bank card system is a new twist. -- The Mac Observer.

Apple has its own JavaScript accelerator in the works

Apple has its own JavaScript accelerator in the works

Mention JavaScript engines at this point, and the big name that comes to mind is Google's V8, the engine that powers not only Google Chrome but Node.js as well. Firefox's SpiderMonkey also gets mention for its implementation of asm.js that can make JavaScript run nearly as fast as native code.

Apple, too, has a JavaScript engine -- JavaScriptCore (aka "Nitro") for WebKit -- and its most recent set of changes give it a performance boost to rival its industry comrades. -- InfoWorld.

Hidden options for managing files and folders in list views

Hidden options for managing files and folders in list views

The OS X Finder has a number of useful tools and options for organizing and accessing your files, one of these being the various list views for files where you can sort items by various categories, combined with the options of folder tree columns and cover-flow previews. However, when in these various views often you might find yourself scrolling through large lists of files to find what you need.

There are several ways to augment these views, if you use them. -- MacIssues.

How to look up file metadata in OS X

How to look up file metadata in OS X

When you save files to disk on your Mac, OS X will include a number of metadata information along with the file, which programs and services such as the Finder might use to sort and search for items. If you need to look at any of this metadata for a file, then there are several ways you can do so. -- MacIssues.

Take Control of OS X Server

'Take Control of OS X Server' Streaming in TidBITS

Running a network server is hard. You have to pick out appropriate hardware, get the networking details right, understand what services it can provide, configure those services, help users get connected, solve the inevitable problems, and much more. Here at TidBITS, we've received hundreds of requests over the years asking for a Take Control title that would explain Apple's OS X Server. We're pleased to announce that we've finally found the right author, Charles Edge, and we'll be streaming his "Take Control of OS X Server" in TidBITS, chapter by chapter, over the next few months. -- TidBITS.

Hyper launches the first Made-for-iPhone/iPad USB flash drive w/ built-in Lightning connector

Hyper launches the first Made-for-iPhone/iPad USB flash drive w/ built-in Lightning connector

Hyper-- we've reviewed some of its MacBook batteries and iPhone accessories in the past-- is today announcing the first Made-For-iPhone/iPad/iPod touch (MFi) flash drive that includes a built-in Lightning connector. Unfortunately you can't get your hands on one just yet, but you can preorder through a funding campaign the company just launched on Kickstarter. -- 9to5Mac.

With Dre & Iovine on board, Apple could become most powerful record label in the world

With Dre & Iovine on board, Apple could become most powerful record label in the world

This won't be the first time someone suggested Apple could start its own record label. But with Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine, two music industry heavyweights that have built some of the world's biggest record labels rumored to be getting creative roles at Apple, it's interesting to imagine what influence Iovine and friends could have on Apple's approach to content. -- 9to5Mac.

Cue health tracker brings molecular-level testing to iOS

Cue health tracker brings molecular-level testing to iOS

With pedometers, smartwatches and other passive connected health-related products carving out a niche in the iOS device accessories market, tech startup Cue is looking to take the "quantified self" much further with an ambitious project that gathers, tracks and interpolates biological samples on the molecular level. -- AppleInsider.

Apple Granted 38 Patents Today Covering an iPad with a Landscape Connector & iSight Camera, a Compact iPod & More

Apple Granted 38 Patents Today Covering an iPad with a Landscape Connector & iSight Camera, a Compact iPod & More

The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 38 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In this particular report we cover a 2012 iPad and Smart Cover design patent clearly illustrating a set landscape connector and more. We also cover a compact iPod design that never made it to market and we wrap up this week's granted patent report with our traditional listing of the remaining granted patents that were issued to Apple today. -- Patently Apple.

Remote Webcam Surveillance With Back to My Mac

Remote Webcam Surveillance With Back to My Mac

Imagine a scenario where you leave your home for an extended period of time, but want to check in occasionally. Maybe you have pets you need to look in on. Maybe you just want to keep on eye on things. Whatever your reasons, the ability to see a live video feed of your home while you are away has an incredible value.

You could use Back to My Mac as a form of pseudo Dropcam, if you were feeling creative. In this tutorial, I'll show you how to:

  • Setup the monitoring and connecting computers
  • Use Back to My Mac to connect and live stream
  • Take pictures and record video
  • A creative alternative using and old iPhone, iPad, or other iDevice -- Tuts+.

Mac Desktop Publishing: Alive And Well

Mac Desktop Publishing: Alive And Well

Those of us who cut a few teeth on PageMaker back in the early days of desktop publishing worried that the internet might alter the landscape.

It did. PageMaker is no more. Adobe's InDesign is horribly expensive, convoluted, and complex. Filling the vacuum after PageMaker's demise are a number of Mac apps which do desktop publishing proud, honoring both the past, and bringing Mac users a package of capabilities for less money. -- Mac 360.

Al Franken's crusade to stop Comcast and save media

Al Franken's crusade to stop Comcast and save media

Most consumers are not fond of their cable companies, but comedian turned US Senator Al Franken, a Democrat from Minnesota, really doesn't like Comcast.

Since winning his Senate seat in 2008 in what turned out to be one of the closest elections in Senate history, the former "Saturday Night Live" writer and performer, who in his previous profession rarely shied away from stinging political satire, has kept a relatively low profile in his new job. But two issues that have gotten the senator fired up are big corporate mergers and Net neutrality. -- CNET.

How to Password Protect Pages, Keynote, & Numbers Documents in iOS

How to Password Protect Pages, Keynote, & Numbers Documents in iOS

The iWork suite of productivity apps include Pages, Numbers, and Keynote, and each of them allow users to password protect individual documents. In practice, this means that a document created within iWork in iOS, OS X, or iCloud, can be safely locked with built-in encryption, and the document can not be opened or viewed without entering the defined password on any other device. For example, you can set a password to a Pages document on your iPhone, then open it again on the Mac from iCloud and it will require a password, and vice versa.

Here's how to use this great feature on any platform offered by Apple, whether you're using Pages, Numbers, or Keynote in iOS, iCloud, or on a Mac. -- OS X Daily.

The iPad productivity guide

The iPad productivity guide

More people than ever are using their iPads to be productive. This short report shares some of the best hardware, software and tips to help get the most out of Apple's tablet. [I worry about these people. Help them.] -- Computerworld.

Five quick and easy iPhone & iPad photography tips

Five quick and easy iPhone & iPad photography tips

One of the most desirable and useful functions of any cell phone is the ability to take photos. You always have your phone with you, and the iPhone has consistently had one of the best cameras of any cell phone on the market. Being able to use your camera more quickly and efficiently will only make the experience that much better. Here are just a few of the more useful iPhone camera tips and tricks we have gathered for your convenience. -- iSource.

Lectures Aren't Just Boring, They're Ineffective, Too, Study Finds

Lectures Aren't Just Boring, They're Ineffective, Too, Study Finds

Are your lectures droning on? Change it up every 10 minutes with more active teaching techniques and more students will succeed, researchers say. A new study finds that undergraduate students in classes with traditional stand-and-deliver lectures are 1.5 times more likely to fail than students in classes that use more stimulating, so-called active learning methods. -- Science.

May 12 Monday's News

 

Apple boosts iPhone 4/4S trade-in values in handset upgrade push

Apple boosts iPhone 4/4S trade-in values in handset upgrade push

Apple on Friday launched an iPhone upgrade promotion that sweetens the deal for iPhone owners looking to step to a new iPhone 5s or 5c. Specifically, owners of iPhone 4S models can net greater trade-in incentives than usual -- up to $199.

Owners of previous generation iPhones can bring their old handsets into an Apple Store for recycling, with trade-in proceeds going toward the purchase of a new iPhone 5s or 5c. -- AppleInsider.

Nobody knows why Apple would buy Beats, but plenty of people are guessing

Nobody knows why Apple would buy Beats, but plenty of people are guessing

I've spent a significant chunk of my morning reading all about the real reason Apple would want to buy Beats Electronics for $3.2 billion.

Some say it's because Apple is "afraid" for its music mindshare. Or it's because Apple wants to fight Spotify. Maybe it's because people are buying a pair of headphones that "replaced white earbuds as a status symbol." It's because Apple wants to maintain its cachet with the youth of today. It's about reaching out to Android users. It's because Beats investors are looking to make a quick buck. It's an April Fools' joke with the wrong date on it. It's a completely unfathomable mystery, like crop circles or Stonehenge. -- Ars Technica.

How to use your email as a powerful to-do manager

How to use your email as a powerful to-do manager

They say your email inbox is a terrible place to manage tasks. I'd disagree. I think it's the perfect place. After all, most of my tasks come in via email, and any app that can share information can share it via email. Why bother dickering with an extra app, keeping all that important stuff in two places, when it can all be easily managed in one spot? -- Cult of Mac.

How to Make Your Photos Really 'Pop' in iPhoto '11 for Mac

How to Make Your Photos Really 'Pop' in iPhoto '11 for Mac

iPhoto '11 boasts some very respectable image editing and enhancement tools. Sandro Cuccia shows you how you can make your images pop when using the more advanced set of iPhoto editing tools. These are some great tips, so check it out. -- The Mac Observer.

Chrome Apps Gaining OS X Finder Integration to Open Mac Files by Default

Chrome Apps Gaining OS X Finder Integration to Open Mac Files by Default

Google has launched a new feature for its experimental Chrome Canary browser for Mac, enabling a beta function that allows users to open local Mac files using Chrome apps in Finder. Using the feature, Chrome apps can be associated with OS X files, bringing Google one step closer to replacing desktop functionality with its browser. -- Mac Rumors.

Apple warns developers of scheduled four hour iTunes Connect maintenance happening May 14th

Apple warns developers of scheduled four hour iTunes Connect maintenance happening May 14th

Apple has notified developers via email that iTunes Connect, the website used to manage and submit applications, will be down for maintenance on May 14th. According to the notice, maintenance will began at 8 AM Pacific Time and last for approximately four hours. Apple does not specify if any user-facing changes will be made, but perhaps Apple is making preparations for some announcements coming in just a few weeks at the 2014 Worldwide Developers Conference. -- 9to5Mac.

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

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

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. -- 9to5Mac.

Fixing Word Crashes With "Smart" Copy And Paste

Fixing Word Crashes With

If you are having problems with Microsoft Word for the Mac crashing, you might try unchecking Word's "Use smart cut and paste" feature.

How to Enable Single Application Mode in Mac OS X

How to Enable Single Application Mode in Mac OS X

These are instructions on how to enable Single Application Mode in Mac OS X.

Single Application Mode automatically hides all other open applications when you select an application from your dock. -- iClarified.

How to Set Up and Use Emulators to Play Classic Games of Yesteryear

How to Set Up and Use Emulators to Play Classic Games of Yesteryear

I grew up playing video game classics like Chuckie Egg and Elite but as technology evolved, so did gaming and these family favorites were eventually replaced with titles boasting photorealistic graphics and high fidelity soundtracks, never to be played again. Until now, that is.

In this tutorial, I'll show you what an emulator is, how to install one and I'll consider popular emulators that mimic home computers such as the BBC Microcomputer System, Commodore 64 and Sinclair ZX Spectrum. -- Tuts+.

Dear Quicken, Meet The Free Mac, Windows, Linux App That Does What You Do

Dear Quicken, Meet The Free Mac, Windows, Linux App That Does What You Do

Some may argue that Apple made a huge mistake by licensing elements of Mac OS to Microsoft which paved the way for a look-a-like operating system to dominate the PC world.

It wasn't that many years ago when Intuit, the publisher of money management app Quicken for both Mac and Windows, decided the Mac was kaput, finished, kicked the bucket, and no longer worth the company's time or investments.

A funny thing happened along the way to Apple's demise, and Quicken's decision to cut and run from the Mac. Today, the Mac dominates PC profits, and seems to be the PC of choice among those who still have money.

While Quicken was closeted by Intuit, clever Mac developers filled the vacuum with the likes of free budget apps, including an old favorite -- Buddi, a cross platform personal finance and budget app for Mac, Windows, and various versions of Linux and Unix. -- BohemianBoomer.

The Most Important Security Settings to Change on Your Router

The Most Important Security Settings to Change on Your Router

Your router is the first line of defense against hackers trying to access all the internet-connected devices in your home. Sadly, many of the top Wi-Fi routers are easy to hack. You should be concerned--and also make sure your router is set up properly. -- Lifehacker.

Fake math

Fake math

Every once in a while I stumble upon some bit of insanity that's being discussed in the bizzarro world where Samsung and Android fandom is fed bogus statistics by companies that are not at all interested in releasing useful information but are just promoting their name. -- John Moltz's Very Nice Web Site.

May 09 Friday's News

 

Apple reportedly nearing $3.2B acquisition of Beats Electronics

Apple reportedly nearing $3.2B acquisition of Beats Electronics

In a somewhat surprising move, Apple is rumored to be in talks with Jimmy Iovine and Dr. Dre's Beats Electronics that could see the audio accessories and music streaming service acquired for $3.2 billion. -- AppleInsider.

How to stash secret messages in tweets using point-and-click steganography

How to stash secret messages in tweets using point-and-click steganography

Steganography is the ancient practice of stashing secret text, images, or messages inside a different text, image, or message. It dates back to as early as the fifth century BC, when Spartan King Demaratus removed the wax from a writing tablet and wrote a message hidden on the wood underneath warning of an imminent invasion by Xerxes. Steganography was a common technique used by German spies in both World Wars. More recently, it has been used to conceal highly advanced espionage malware inside image files and stash secret al-Qaeda documents inside pornographic images. -- Ars Technica.

Four weeks on, huge swaths of the Internet remain vulnerable to Heartbleed

Four weeks on, huge swaths of the Internet remain vulnerable to Heartbleed

More than four weeks after the disclosure of the so-called Heartbleed bug found in a widely used cryptography package, slightly more or slightly less than half the systems affected by the catastrophic flaw remain vulnerable, according to two recently released estimates. -- Ars Technica.

Advice from an Apple Tech: ClamXav is a valuable troubleshooting tool

Advice from an Apple Tech: ClamXav is a valuable troubleshooting tool

As much as you might want to believe that your Mac is nigh on invulnerable to viruses, trojans, malware and phishing-based attacks, this simply isn't the case. Along with well-publicized vulnerabilities that have been exploited such as Flash Player and Java, OS X is still vulnerable to a variety of malware that can make life interesting for both you and your clients. -- Macworld.

5 tips for avoiding Internet dopiness

5 tips for avoiding Internet dopiness

I don't know a single person incapable of making mistakes. We are, after all, human. However, I know just as few people who like to broadcast those mistakes to the rest of the world. Here are five mistakes that are easy to make and, hopefully, just as easy to avoid. -- Macworld.

Hands-on with Cinamatic, Hipstamatic's elegant video creator

Hands-on with Cinamatic, Hipstamatic's elegant video creator

The great filter race between Instagram and Hipstamatic for social photo glory may be long over, but Hipstamatic is far from finished. On Thursday, the company launched Cinamatic, a video app that sticks to the classic mobile photo formula of being "square, filtered, and fantastic," as well as short in length. In development for the past three years, Cinamatic is finally ready for the masses to start making their own video creations--if you have an iPhone, that is. -- Macworld.

Why is mobile email still so bad? And how can we fix it?

Why is mobile email still so bad? And how can we fix it?

Despite all efforts to the contrary, email is still the default way to shift files, photos and -- yes -- mail around the internet. Even when you share a file using Dropbox, the link goes via old-fashioned email. And yet email clients are still awful. They've gotten a lot better in the last couple of years, on both iOS and the Mac, but we're still stuck without a proper task manager that integrates with the native iOS/OS X Calendar and Reminders.

What's going on? -- Cult of Mac.

Apple snaps up Nokia PureView camera engineer

Apple snaps up Nokia PureView camera engineer

Nokia's incredible PureView camera technology is one of the reasons why so many Android users were desperate to see the Finnish firm ditch Windows Phone and bring Google's platform to its flagship smartphones instead -- and you could soon see the same technology in future iPhones. -- Cult of Mac.

Future iPhones Could Capture 'Super-Resolution' Photos Using Optical Image Stabilization

Future iPhones Could Capture 'Super-Resolution' Photos Using Optical Image Stabilization

Documents discovered on Thursday show Apple is hard at work on tech to take iPhone picture quality to new levels, specifically a "super-resolution" imaging engine that uses optical image stabilization to capture multiple samples that are then stitched together to form an incredibly high-density photo. -- AppleInsider.

Tips and tricks for securing your Mac

Tips and tricks for securing your Mac

Securing your Mac and the online services you use revolves around layering your security options, so not only do you have your computing content secured by a proper password, but it is also properly packaged for security. In addition, how you configure your Mac can greatly affect how secure it is.

There are several easy approaches you can follow to ensure your Mac is as secure as possible, especially as malware and online security threats from an increasing cybercrime community are developed, and snafus such as the recent Heartbleed OpenSSL bug occur that could potentially compromise your data. -- MacIssues.

Malware detection is a losing battle

Malware detection is a losing battle

As personal computing took off in the 80s, people progressively relied upon security software to remove viruses, trojans, spyware, and other malicious software from their systems. For a couple of decades, it seemed such software was a necessity, especially for platforms that suffered a larger onslaught of malware than others (namely Windows and the classic Mac OS, in comparison to OS X). Malware is still an ongoing and major problem; however, it appears that this classic approach to stemming the flow of malware is a progressively failed effort. -- MacIssues.

Apple Advances their Personal Display Headset Invention

Apple Advances their Personal Display Headset Invention

Believe it or not, Apple was well ahead of the pack when they were first granted a patent for a video headset display back in 2009. Back then, there was no Google Glass or Sony video headset. Apple's original patent was filed in 2006 which was in and around the time that Apple was working on Project Purple which was the code name for the iPhone. Since that time Apple has been working on other aspects or features for a possible future headset, with one them being the addition of telephony. With Apple recently acquiring PrimeSense who has a patent regarding a headset on record, there appears to be new interest in advancing Apple's personal display system. With PrimeSense making Microsoft's Kinect system a reality and their technology being at the heart of new 3D camera phones like Google's Project Tango coming to market this year, the PrimeSense team may be able to breathe new life into Apple's video headset project. Today, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals that they're advancing one of their video headset patents by adding new and improved patent claims to strengthen and update their invention. As Tim Cook recently stated, "we care about every detail. And when you care about every detail and getting it right, it takes a bit longer to do that." Longer term projects such as this cool video headset would definitely fit Cook's philosophical view like a glove -- Patently Apple.

Apple Invents New Methods for Improving AMOLED Displays

Apple Invents New Methods for Improving AMOLED Displays

On May 8, 2014, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application regarding methods for improving AMOLED displays. Today's patent pending invention covers new methods for greatly improving gray level controls that improves overall color. While some may not take Apple's work on AMOLED too seriously because of disparaging comments that Apple executives have made over time, think again. -- Patently Apple.

Apple Can Extract Texts, Photos, Contacts From Locked iPhones

Apple Can Extract Texts, Photos, Contacts From Locked iPhones

If law enforcement gets hold of your locked iPhone and has some interest in its contents, Apple can pull all kinds of content from the device, including texts, contacts, photos and videos, call history and audio recordings. -- Threatpost.

Podcasting tools: Going pro

Podcasting tools: Going pro

Recently, as part of a podcast production series, I was asked how I approach the technical aspects of the Macworld Podcast. In one of the first installments I described the equipment I use. At the time I employed an AKG C414 EB condenser microphone mounted on a Heil Sound PL2T boom stand run through an original Apogee One USB interface. Due to an unexpected-but-welcome tax refund and the need for the AKG mic to return to its owners (my band), I decided to upgrade my gear. These are the results. -- Macworld.

Pages: Finding & Replacing Invisible Characters

Pages: Finding & Replacing Invisible Characters

In this tip, we're going to tell you how to find those pesky hidden characters-tabs and paragraph returns, for example-and replace them. This'll help a lot when you're editing documents in Pages and you find, for example, that someone's used tabs instead of setting margins or has typed two spaces after every period. This works in all of the recent versions of Pages (including Pages '09) so come check it out! -- The Mac Observer.

eXtensions: Mavericks on External Media

eXtensions: Mavericks on External Media

Flash Drive and Hard disk -- Pitfalls and Partial Success -- I had delayed updating my OS X rescue disks for too long, mainly because it did not matter, up to a point. This was not an extension of the "It will never happen to me" syndrome, but if there had been any emergency on one of my Macs, I had a spare MacBook Pro ready to help with repairs.

Flash Drive and Hard disk -- Completing the Installations -- I had delayed updating my rescue disks for too long, partly as a standard download onto the external media would not work with the new 13" MacBook Pro with Retina display. As OS X 10.9.3 is imminent, and the spare Mac might be heading for a new home, this maintenance update for external media was overdue. While an external hard disk was easy to update, the installation on a USB flash drive had some initial difficulties.

Six handy tips for your Mac's application switcher

Six handy tips for your Mac's application switcher

Did you know you can do more than quickly switch between open apps using the application switcher in OS X? I sure didn't.

The application switch built into OS X makes it super easy -- and fast -- to switch between applications currently open and running on your Mac. To use it, you simply press hold in the Command key, while pressing Tab to scroll through the app icons. When you release Command on an app's icon, the respective app is displayed.

Our own Matt Elliot had previously covered how to go left in the app switcher, but as it turns out, there's actually a few more tricks to the seemingly vanilla application switcher. -- CNET.

How to sell your Mac

How to sell your Mac

There comes a time in every Mac's life when it's time to say goodbye. Maybe it's time to move up to a new model. Maybe it no longer has that new Mac sparkle you crave. Maybe it's just old and busted. No matter what the reason, it's time to part ways. Here are some tips for where you can go to unload your old Mac.

For the sake of argument, I'm using my white polycarbonate MacBook as a potential victim here. It's a late 2009 model equipped with a 2.26 GHz Core 2 Duo processor, and it still works well and looks good. I've beefed it up with 8 GB RAM and an SSD, too. If I decide to sell it, what am I likely to get for it? Hm. Let's find out! -- iMore.

How to disable cellular data on your iPhone or iPad

How to disable cellular data on your iPhone or iPad

For most of us, cellular data through our carrier is limited. Whether you're traveling internationally or you're about to hit your data cap for the month, turning off cellular data completely lets you rest assured you won't be hit with overage charges. Here's how. -- iMore.

Mathematical Model Suggests That Human Consciousness Is Non-computable

Mathematical Model Suggests That Human Consciousness Is Noncomputable

One of the most profound advances in science in recent years is the way researchers from a variety of fields are beginning to think about consciousness. Until now, the c-word was been taboo for most scientists. Any suggestion that a researchers was interested in this area would be tantamount to professional suicide.

That has begun to change thanks to a new theory of consciousness developed in the last ten years or so by Giulio Tononi, a neuroscientist at the University of Wisconsin in Madison, and others. Tononi's key idea is that consciousness is phenomenon in which information is integrated in the brain in a way that cannot be broken down. -- Medium.

May 08 Thursday's News

 

One Man's Opinion: Thunderbolt Monitor Issue

One Man's Opinion: Thurnderbolt Montiror Issue

I may have mentioned that as a second monitor for my iMac and all my Windows 7 work (and I do a lot of it) I have a 27" Thunderbolt Monitor.

Well since the day I got it has had a bad habit of loosing connection with my iMac and going all black. Unplugging the Thunderbolt connector and replugging usually restored it but I might take more than one unplug/replug.

This could happen at boot time, lunch, end of the day, one, twice, or not a all.

I know about the issues with the MacBook Pros, but a fix was issued for that. This is not the same thing.

It is not the iMac as there are two Thunderbolt ports on my iMac. I use them both and have switched the monitor and HD's from port to port. The HD's never fail no matter the port. The Thunderbolt Monitor fails no matter which port, so it is the monitor or its cable, which I can't change.

I was talking to the "Tim the Enchanter" yesterday and he told me the only thing to do was take it in, so I did. It was a long walk back to the office. And warm too.

More news as I get it.

Anyway, that's one man's opinion.

Apple seeds ninth OS X 10.9.3 Mavericks beta, Safari 7.0.4 Seed 1 to developers with minor tweaks

Apple seeds ninth OS X 10.9.3 Mavericks beta, Safari 7.0.4 Seed 1 to developers with minor tweaks

Apple on Wednesday issued to developers the latest beta build of its upcoming OS X 10.9.3 maintenance update, as well as a new version of the company's Safari Web browser.

Following its weekly release schedule, Apple's latest beta build 13D61 asks testers to continue to focus on graphics drivers, audio, Safari, Mail and Contacts & Calendar syncing over USB in iTunes. The areas of interest are identical to last week's OS X 10.9.3 Mavericks beta build 13D55.

The most recent build comes two weeks after Apple decided to open up the beta testing process to all Mac users via the Beta Seed Program, a major change to its operating policies. It is unclear how the new program has affected beta rollouts. -- AppleInsider.

Scientific computing's future: Can any coding language top a 1950s behemoth?

Scientific computing's future: Can any coding language top a 1950s behemoth?

"I don't know what the language of the year 2000 will look like, but I know it will be called Fortran." -- Tony Hoare, winner of the 1980 Turing Award, in 1982.

Take a tour through the research laboratories at any university physics department or national lab, and much of what you will see defines "cutting edge." "Research," after all, means seeing what has never been seen before--looking deeper, measuring more precisely, thinking about problems in new ways.

A large research project in the physical sciences usually involves experimenters, theorists, and people carrying out calculations with computers. There are computers and terminals everywhere. Some of the people hunched over these screens are writing papers, some are analyzing data, and some are working on simulations. These simulations are also quite often on the cutting edge, pushing the world's fastest supercomputers, with their thousands of networked processors, to the limit. But almost universally, the language in which these simulation codes are written is Fortran, a relic from the 1950s. -- Ars Technica.

Create a bootable Mavericks install drive for newer Macs

Create a bootable Mavericks install drive for newer Macs

A nice feature of recent OS X versions is OS X Recovery. If you ever have system or drive issues, OS X Recovery lets you boot your Mac into a special recovery mode to check or repair your hard drive, browse the Web for troubleshooting help, restore your drive from a backup, or even reinstall OS X itself. (See our hands-on with Mountain Lion Recovery for all the details.) -- Macworld.

Hollywood loves Apple almost as much as it loves itself

Hollywood loves Apple almost as much as it loves itself

The passionate affair burned for decades before Samsung came snapping celebrity selfies with Ellen at the Oscars and dishing out enough paid endorsements to finance the next Star Wars trilogy.

Apple plans to fight back with its own buzz marketer in New York to keep its products in the hands of the elite and glamorous. But Cupertino has never had a problem getting its products on the big screen and into the coolest TV shows -- even though Apple swears it doesn't pay a dime for product placements. Here are 18 of the most iconic Apple cameos to hit the screen. -- Cult of Mac.

Tiny gadget cures MIDI of its cable addiction

Tiny gadget cures MIDI of its cable addiction

Getting your MIDI keyboard connected to your iPad or Mac can be a frustrating experience. You've got to make sure you've got the right wires that connect to your output device of choice, and then you've got to make sure you never ever lose them.

Hopping onstage for a gig at the local brewpub can be a frightening experience if you've lost that one special cord that goes from your keys to your Ableton Live setup on your Mac, and missing out on a recording session because you can't find that special 30-pin adaptor for your iPad is just a pain in the butt.

The folks behind the excellent JamStick, Zivix, have your answer, then, with a cool-looking little round gadget called a PUC that connects any MIDI keyboard or other capable device to your iPad, your Mac, your iPhone, your PC -- you name it, if it's got Wi-Fi and can run a MIDI app, you can use the PUC to send your MIDI performance to it. -- Cult of Mac.

Follow these steps to control your iPhone with your head

Follow these steps to control your iPhone with your head

As more and more smartphones are released with all new features, it's not difficult for the average iPhone user to become slightly envious. In today's how-to, learn how to use one of the iPhone's coolest features that isn't so commonly known. Click the home button, turn your volume up and down, and so much more by simply following these steps and moving your head. -- Cult of Mac.

Adobe Voice lets you turn audio messages into slick iPad animations

Adobe Voice lets you turn audio messages into slick iPad animations

Adobe has launched an intriguing new iPad app called Adobe Voice. Designed to help users "create stunning animated videos in minutes," the app lets you record an audio message, and then quickly and easily turn it into a slick animation. All you have to do is match your words with a library of 25,000 images, and then Adobe Voice does the rest by adding in transition animations and a backing track. -- Cult of Mac.

Net Neutrality And You - It's a Big Deal

Net Neutrality And You - It's a Big Deal

Net neutrality seems like it would be just what it says, a neutral Internet. While that's the basic concept, there's a lot more to it when you hear the phrase bandied about on podcasts and news programs. It's a complicated issue, one that Senator Al Franken earlier on Wednesday called the free speech issue of our time. He's not far off. -- The Mac Observer.

AppleCare+ Extended on Institutional Purchasing, Now Three Years of Coverage

AppleCare+ Extended on Institutional Purchasing, Now Three Years of Coverage

AppleCare's time frame has been extended by one year on purchases made from the institutional store.

It used to be that AppleCare+ was a two-year extension of the warranty, but now it's showing in the educational store as a three-year extension for the same US $99 price.

Keep in mind this is for institutional purchasing, or buying in bulk for classrooms full of students. This isn't the education store used to make personal purchases with an educational discount. -- AppleInsider.

Apple's Move to Revolutionize Sapphire Manufacturing Likely to Leave Competitors Behind

Apple's Move to Revolutionize Sapphire Manufacturing Likely to Leave Competitors Behind

Apple revolutionized aluminum manufacturing when it adopted the unibody design for its MacBook Pro line of notebooks, advancing the production process in a way that benefitted the industry as a whole. Now, the company is poised to change the nature of sapphire manufacturing in a similar way, but this time the sole beneficiary will be Apple, argues The Verge.

How to set up and use screen sharing in OS X

How to set up and use screen sharing in OS X

Screen Sharing is a feature in your Mac that allows you to graphically view and interact with a Mac in a remote location. By logging into your Mac in this way, you will see its desktop appear on your screen just as if you were in front of it, and not only be able to use it, but also copy files to and from it. This makes Screen Sharing perhaps one of the more useful services included in OS X. -- MacIssues.

Apple Invents New iDevice Super-Resolution Camera Engine

Apple Invents New iDevice Super-Resolution Camera Engine

On May 8, 2014, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals a super-resolution camera engine for iDevices and beyond. In camera shootouts against Samsung's Galaxy S5, Apple's iSight camera fares well. Now Apple's super-resolution engine is out to vastly improve stabilizing shots, especially action and panoramic shots for higher clarity. -- Patently Apple.

Microsoft, Google, and others stand together to voice support for net neutrality, Apple declines to join

Microsoft, Google, and others stand together to voice support for net neutrality, Apple declines to join

Following a proposal that many fear threatens net neutrality, a plethora of tech companies today have come together to support net neutrality in a letter to the Federal Communications Commission. The group is led by Google, Amazon, Facebook, Microsoft, Netflix, and Twitter, as well as many others. Notably missing, however, is Apple. -- 9to5Mac.

Power tools: Make events on your Mac trigger iOS notifications

Power tools: Make events on your Mac trigger iOS notifications

Let's say you've got a really cool Automator workflow that saves you tons of time but takes a while to run. Do you really have to sit around, twiddling your thumbs while waiting for it to finish? Wouldn't it be nicer if you could go get a latte instead and get an alert on your iPhone when the workflow is finished? That's just one example of the kind of thing possible with the latest version of If This Then That (IFTTT). -- Macworld.

How to shoot HDR photos on your iPhone

How to shoot HDR photos on your iPhone

Your iPhone's Camera app offers all sorts of neat tricks for taking photos any environment. For most images, you can adjust the lighting and focus by tapping your iPhone's screen; that may not be enough, however, when you're snapping in very bright or very dark locations. That's where your iPhone's HDR (high dynamic range) feature comes in. -- Macworld.

Hipstamatic gives news shooter fresh eye for Chicago streets

Hipstamatic gives news shooter fresh eye for Chicago streets

When photojournalist Scott Strazzante planned a weekend trip to Washington, D.C., with his daughter Betsy in 2011, he was intent on leaving his cameras at home.

They were visiting colleges and he wanted it to be a "daddy-daughter" weekend. But the prolific, award-winning photographer gets anxious when he is not creating, so there was a point in the trip when he commandeered her iPhone, downloaded Hipstamatic and started making pictures. -- Cult of Mac.

iPhone app screens for skin cancer more accurately than your doctor, shows early testing

iPhone app screens for skin cancer more accurately than your doctor, shows early testing

Early testing of an iPhone app developed to detect melanoma -- the most dangerous form of skin cancer -- found an accuracy rate of around 85 percent. This is similar to that achieved by specialist dermatologists, and more accurate than examination by primary care physicians. -- 9to5Mac.

Apple has its own JavaScript accelerator in the works

Apple has its own JavaScript accelerator in the works

Apple's FTLJIT project aims to give JavaScript a boost, and it doesn't require the use of asm.js for its speed improvements.

Mention JavaScript engines at this point, and the big name that comes to mind is Google's V8, the engine that powers not only Google Chrome but Node.js as well. Firefox's SpiderMonkey also gets mention for its implementation of asm.js that can make JavaScript run nearly as fast as native code.

Apple, too, has a JavaScript engine -- JavaScriptCore (aka "Nitro") for WebKit -- and its most recent set of changes give it a performance boost to rival its industry comrades. -- InfoWorld.

The Leap Motion Controller and Mac: Part 1

The Leap Motion Controller and Mac: Part 1

The Leap Motion Controller is a peripheral input device that lets you interact with your Mac in a new way. With it you can control supported apps by waving your hands in the air--like Tom Cruise in Minority Report. The Leap Motion Controller detects the movement of your hands and fingers and uses these to control the Mac. You can use your hand gestures to sculpt 3D objects, play games, make music and do a whole lot more.

In this tutorial I'll explain how the Leap Motion Controller works, show you how to set it up, find and install compatible apps and give you a few tips for using it.

This is the first of a series of tutorials that will show you how to use the Leap Motion Controller and so will focus on the basics. Later tutorials will dive deep into the cool things you can do with the Leap Motion Controller. -- Tuts+.

Using LaunchPad

Using LaunchPad

The LaunchPad app is a quick way to launch applications on your Mac. You can use keyboard shortcuts and the search function to launch any app in seconds. You can also use LaunchPad to arrange your apps, group them, and even uninstall some apps. Learn for unusual tips and tricks for using LaunchPad. -- MacMost.

Gigaom: Reinventing the Internet

Reinventing the Internet

Why Gigaom thinks it's time to reinvent the Internet -- The Internet has profoundly changed the world. But if you were to design it in 2014, knowing now what we know about how much we've all come to depend on this resource, you might do a few things differently.

How do we build a better network? -- In this part of our special report on reinventing the internet, a look at how its growth of the internet, in terms of connected devices, content and its importance, has researchers and analysts searching for new business models and technical ways to improve the network.

What if AMC took the plunge and unbundled from cable? -- In this part of our special report on reinventing the Internet, the radical changes that reinventing TV on the Internet would bring to the underlying economics. AMC, the channel that's home to Don Draper and Walter White, might lead the way.

A political protocol to protect the Internet, and where to find it -- In this part of our special report on reinventing the Internet, some proposals for how governments should -- and shouldn't -- regulate the Internet.

How wireless networks could become the workhorses of the web -- In this part of our special report on reinventing the Internet, a look at how the wireless networks of the future should evolve to hand a world in which mobile computers are the standard computers.

Here's how to make online life more secure and trustworthy" -- In this part of our special report on reinventing the Internet, we look at the Internet as a shared global resource -- in a perfect world, that would mean international cooperation to keep it safe and secure.

May 07 Wednesday's News

 

Apple's invention for touch-sensitive buttons could prevent accidental inputs

Apple's invention for touch-sensitive buttons could prevent accidental inputs

Apple is famous for its pioneering touchscreen devices, but a new patent shows the company has also dabbled behind the scenes in touch-sensitive buttons that would be able to distinguish between accidental activation and an actual finger press. -- AppleInsider.

Google Maps 8 brings lane guidance, Uber integration, and more

Google Maps 8 brings lane guidance, Uber integration, and more

Google has just announced a major release of Google Maps for Android and iOS. The biggest new feature is lane guidance, which will direct you to the proper lane so you can make your exit. -- AppleInsider.

Largest vinyl record pressing plant in the US is expanding

Largest vinyl record pressing plant in the US is expanding

America's largest vinyl record pressing plant in Nashville, TN will be expanding its operations to include a second warehouse full of record-making machinery. United Record Pressing LLC told The Tennessean on Monday that it plans to add 16 presses to its present 30, and it will use the remaining space in the new warehouse as storage to meet a robustly-growing demand for its product.

While we've been seeing an upward trend in the vinyl record industry for years now, those increases are becoming more noticeable, and this latest news from United Record Pressing reflects that in a tangible way. The company's new location is a 142,000-square-foot warehouse in Nashville that it bought for $5.5 million.

United Record is attributing the good times to digital music sales. "Our belief is that it's being driven by the rise in digital," Jay Millar, the company's Director of Marketing, told The Tennessean. "People who want something tangible and the best sound quality and experience are going to vinyl as opposed to CDs."

Charge your iPhone faster than ever with this quick tip

Charge your iPhone faster than ever with this quick tip

There's nothing more irritating than wanting to use your iPhone and seeing that the battery is either low or completely dead. While plugging in your iPhone normally can get you a pretty good charge, it seems to take a long time. In this episode of Cult of Mac's how-to's we show you how to charge your iPhone quicker than normally with our easy steps.

Siri hole can hack past your lockscreen to call and text contacts

Siri hole can hack past your lockscreen to call and text contacts

A new exploit has been discovered in iOS 7.1.1 that lets anyone access your full contacts list and send an email, text or call -- just by chatting with Siri.

Egyptian neurosurgeon and part-time hacker Sherif Hashim, apparently the first to discover the security hole, posted a YouTube video detailing the steps of the exploit. [Of course any "exploit" the requires physical contact with the iPhone is not much of a threat.] -- Cult of Mac.

Level3 is without peer, now what to do?

Level3 is without peer, now what to do?

There's a peering crisis apparently happening right now among American Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and backbone providers according to a blog post this week from backbone company Level3 that I am sure many of you have read. The gist of it is that six major ISPs of the 51 that peer with Level3 have maxed-out their interconnections and are refusing to do the hardware upgrades required to support the current level of traffic. The result is that packets are being dropped, porn videos are stuttering, and customers are being ill-served. I know exactly what's going on here and also how to fix it, pronto. -- I, Cringely.

7 Apple Initiatives that Will Kill the Competition

7 Apple Initiatives that Will Kill the Competition

Apple is systematically putting many initiatives together in a strategic way. Looked at in isolation, each is nothing for competitors to worry about because it looks like another puzzle piece. Taken as a whole, the effects will be lethal for the competition. -- The Mac Observer.

How To Improve iPhone Battery Life in iOS 7.1.1

How To Improve iPhone Battery Life in iOS 7.1.1

Kelly gave you some suggestions yesterday for minimizing cellular data usage, which has a bonus of helping your battery life. Today we're going to talk specifically about extending that battery life. -- The Mac Observer.

Biotech Industry Bracing for Apple's Brand of Disruption

Biotech Industry Bracing for Apple's Brand of Disruption

Apple's hiring binge in the biotechnology field is already rattling the industry. According to Reuters, Apple scooping up chief medical officers, engineers, and others in field has some executives complaining, a sure sign they're worried. And, they should be. Apple is coming. -- The Mac Observer.

SSD Speed Variations in 2014 MacBook Air Still Due to Drive Brand Mix, Not Broader Changes

SSD Speed Variations in 2014 MacBook Air Still Due to Drive Brand Mix, Not Broader Changes

For many years, Apple has used different suppliers for the solid-state drives (SSDs) in its MacBook Air models, with drive performance varying among manufacturer brands. A recent study by Macworld demonstrated rather dramatic differences in SSD read and write speeds between tested 2013 and 2014 models, but at the time it was unclear whether the poorer performance for the 2014 models was still simply due to drive brand variances or if there was something specific to the 2014 machines causing an overall degradation in performance.

Other World Computing (OWC) has now performed some apples-to-apples testing between 2013 and 2014 models with SanDisk SSDs, and has found that performance is nearly identical. -- Mac Rumors.

How Anybody Can Measure Your Computer's Wi-Fi Fingerprint

How Anybody Can Measure Your Computer's Wi-Fi Fingerprint

Measuring the unique Wi-Fi fingerprint of wireless devices could help to secure wireless networks against malicious attack, say computer security experts.

Wireless Internet access has become one of the enabling technologies of the modern world. Indeed, many think of Wi-Fi is the oxygen of the computer generation.

While wireless access is hugely useful, it is also a security threat. Anybody can access a wireless network by masquerading as a computer that already has access. This technique is known as MAC spoofing: the action of taking the MAC address of another computer to benefit from its authorization.

One way to prevent this is to have some other way of identifying the computer trying to get access. The question is how. -- MIT Technology Review.

Electronics companies think the Affordable Care Act will push us to embrace technology to track our health and lifestyles

Electronics companies think the Affordable Care Act will push us to embrace technology to track our health and lifestyles

Exactly a week after the Affordable Care Act's mandate for universal coverage went into effect, in January, I found myself standing in the back of a crowded conference room in the Las Vegas Convention Center. On the floor below, the annual Consumer Electronics Show was in full swing. Over the next two days, 750 of the roughly 150,000 attendees streamed in and out of the room to hear the proceedings of the Digital Health Summit, a carefully curated lineup of keynotes, panels, and super-sessions on how the tech sector might capitalize on the new opportunities brought by health reform. -- MIT Technology Review.

Walgreens & Walmart testing iBeacons, Motorola Solutions launches iBeacon marketing platform

Walgreens & Walmart testing iBeacons, Motorola Solutions launches iBeacon marketing platform

Walgreens owned drugstore chain Duane Reade announced today that it's updating its iPhone app with support for iBeacons it recently installed in 10 of its New York city locations. It and Walmart are just two of the latest big name chains said to be testing the technology, while Motorola Solutions announced today its own indoor location platform that includes a combination of Bluetooth iBeacons and Wi-Fi based features. -- 9to5Mac.

An essential OS X Mavericks problem-solving guide

An essential OS X Mavericks problem-solving guide

Mac emergencies don't happen often, but when they do it helps to know what to do -- that's the knowledge this short guide helps provide. -- Computerworld.

Task3: An Automation Tool For The Mac

Task3: An Automation Tool For The Mac

Give Apple some credit from trying to make a sophisticated and complex computer somewhat easier to use; if not downright likable. Built in to OS X is AppleScript; a structured command language somewhat akin to Unix shell scripts; a way to automate complex tasks. Apple's Automator app attempts to automate task workflows for the masses who still fail to automate many tasks. Here's another way to automate tasks on a Mac. -- Mac 360.

iOS Devices as a Photographers' Assistant

iOS Devices as a Photographers' Assistant

I own a couple of DSLR cameras: the Nikon D70 and Nikon D7000. I use these extensively and love the burst mode as well as the way I can set the cameras up for automatic shooting: I can concentrate on the shot. With these cameras, I find that there are several ways I can use iOS devices to improve the experience. -- eXtensions.

I Go to See 4K TV -- Again

I Go to See 4K TV -- Again

The latest technology scheme is 4K, also known as Ultra HD, which means four times as many pixels on the screen; twice as many horizontally, twice as many vertically. In theory, this means a much sharper picture, assuming you have the source material to go with it -- and don't sit too far from the set. The new models also do upscaling, so traditional high definition fare, up to 1080p in resolution, theoretically looks noticeably better. For the most part, the new sets are much more expensive, and thus offer the opportunity for much higher profits in an industry where profits are traditionally slim because of cutthroat competition. -- The Tech Night Owl.

May 06 Tuesday's News

 

Apple aware of email attachment encryption issue in iOS 7.1.1

Apple aware of email attachment encryption issue in iOS 7.1.1

Recent releases of Apple's iOS platform, including the latest iOS 7.1.1 update, include a bug that prevents email attachments saved on the device from being properly protected with encryption, and a fix is presumably on the way. -- AppleInsider.

Antivirus pioneer Symantec declares AV 'dead' and 'doomed to failure'

Antivirus pioneer Symantec declares AV 'dead' and 'doomed to failure'

Commercial antivirus pioneer Symantec has finally admitted publicly what critics have been saying for years: the growing inability of the scanning software to detect the majority of malware attacks makes it "dead" and "doomed to failure," according to a published report. -- Ars Technica.

A reporter, a reddit founder, a lawyer, and an ex-NSA chief walk into a debate

A reporter, a reddit founder, a lawyer, and an ex-NSA chief walk into a debate

Friday night, luminaries from both sides of the "broad state surveillance" argument took the stage together for a public debate, the latest in Canada's Munk Debate series, on the subject. In the end, surveillance critics won the spread between pre- and post-debate audience polls to triumph, but in between were two hours of impassioned invective from some of the world's preeminent experts and advocates on a public issue still far from settled. -- Ars Technica.

Mozilla proposes new version of net neutrality rules

Mozilla proposes new version of net neutrality rules

The Mozilla Foundation today is filing a petition asking the Federal Communications Commission to declare that ISPs are common carriers, but there's a twist.

The FCC doesn't have to reclassify the Internet access ISPs offer consumers as a telecommunications service subject to common carrier regulations under Title II of the Communications Act, Mozilla says. Instead, the FCC should target the service ISPs offer to edge providers like Netflix and Dropbox, who need to send their bits over ISP networks to reach their customers. Classifying the ISP/edge provider relationship as a common carrier service will be a little cleaner since the FCC wouldn't have to undo several decade-old orders that classified broadband as an "information" service rather than telecommunications, Mozilla argues. -- Ars Technica.

OS X: How to Configure the Network System Preference

OS X: How to Configure the Network System Preference

Out of the box, a Macintosh is configured to search for a wired and Wi-Fi Internet connection. However, there may be a need for some additional adjustments. John Martellaro explains the basics of the Network System Preference. -- The Mac Observer.

To Kill A Mockingbird Finally Goes Digital

To Kill A Mockingbird Finally Goes Digital

Harper Collins announced last Monday that Harper Lee's To Kill A Mockingbird will (finally) become an e-book, all official like, released this coming July. This announcement coincided with author Harper Lee's 88th birthday, and the release of the digital edition is timed to the book's 54th birthday. There will be digital audio as part of the release as well, read by Sissy Spacek. Clearly this calls for that most literary of cocktails, the Tequila Mockingbird. If Catcher in the Rye ever gets an e-book edition, it's an Old Fashioned for everyone! The publisher hasn't yet announced which ebook retailers will carry the title. -- New York Times.

10.9: Assigning Tags by keyboard shortcut in Finder

10.9: Assigning Tags by keyboard shortcut in Finder

I'm not sure if this has been covered sufficiently already, but I've heard lamentations by various writers about the lack of a keyboard shortcut to bring up the file-tagging popup in the Finder. While none is provided by default, one can easily be set up. -- Mac OS X Hints.

How to put your Mac's display to sleep

How to put your Mac's display to sleep

When working at your Mac, there may be times when you would like to simply shut off the monitor without interrupting your work. For example, if you are downloading files or in the middle of processing a large amount of data that will take hours to complete, or if you are simply playing music and do not want to view anything on your display, then you might like to blank out the display. -- MacIssues.

Auto-complete words in OS X

Auto-complete words in OS X

Auto-complete options when using your Mac can often be exceptionally useful. For example, if you are a Terminal user, then when you enter a command you can type the first few letters of a command and then press Tab to have the Terminal show you the available commands based on those initial letters. You can do the same when typing file and folder paths in various parts of OS X. -- MacIssues.

Skype Makes Group Video Calling Free

Skype Makes Group Video Calling Free

In an effort to compete better with Google Hangouts, Microsoft's Skype has made group video calling -- previously available only to Skype Premium subscribers -- free for all Mac, Windows, and Xbox One users, with support for more platforms slated for the future. In our use, Skype's quality and reliability has suffered over the past few years, and while Google Hangouts has a lousy user experience for starting and joining calls, it is far more stable than Skype once you get going. -- Skype.

iOS 7 Email Attachment Vulnerability Real but Limited

iOS 7 Email Attachment Vulnerability Real but Limited

Although Apple has confirmed that email attachments are not properly secured by iOS's data protection mechanisms, there's not much to worry about unless you're carrying important business secrets or are an international spy. -- TidBITS.

Apple plans 'enormous' iPhone upgrade event this week to boost sales

Apple plans 'enormous' iPhone upgrade event this week to boost sales

Apple is planning to hold an 'enormous' iPhone-related event in its stores this week in order to boost sales, according to a source with knowledge of the initiative. Beginning May 8th, the source said, Apple will be contacting upgrade-eligible iPhone users with older iPhone models via email to come into their local Apple Store to update to a new iPhone 5s or iPhone 5c... -- 9to5Mac.

OS X: About the application firewall

OS X: About the application firewall

OS X includes an application firewall you can use to control connections made to your computer from other computers on your network.

OS X v10.5.1 and later include an application firewall you can use to control connections on a per-application basis (rather than a per-port basis). This makes it easier to gain the benefits of firewall protection, and helps prevent undesirable apps from taking control of network ports open for legitimate apps. -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

OS X: How to disable automatic login when FileVault is enabled

OS X: How to disable automatic login when FileVault is enabled

OS X Mavericks lets you disable automatic login when FileVault is enabled using one of the methods described here. -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

Solving the mysteries of the Mail Downloads folder

Solving the mysteries of the Mail Downloads folder

The scenario is straightforward: You receive a message with an attachment in Mail and double-click the attached file to open it in the appropriate app. But what happens next is anything but straightforward: file attachments are stored in a hard-to-find folder; they are sometimes downloaded more than once; and different apps treat these opened files in very different ways. -- Macworld.

Apple Granted 64 Patents Today Covering iBeacon, The Magic Trackpad's Gimbal Press, Gesture Mapping & Much More

Apple Granted 64 Patents Today Covering iBeacon, The Magic Trackpad's Gimbal Press, Gesture Mapping & Much More

The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 64 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In this particular report we cover granted patents covering Apple's iBeacon, the Magic Trackpad's gimbal press, Gesture Mapping as it relates to image filters and five design patents. We wrap up this week's granted patent report with our traditional listing of the remaining granted patents that were issued to Apple today. -- Patently Apple.

The Real Problem With Email

The Real Problem With Email

Let me start off my weekly rant with a little survey; a few questions to set the stage, prime the pump, etc.

First, how long have you been using email? For me it's almost 20 years. How many email accounts do you have? I have some I forgot that I have, but they range from the one my ISP gives me, to the company email account, to Yahoo!, Hotmail, and Gmail, and my TeraTalks account.

Second, how much time do you devote to email each day? Have you ever written an email message that came back to haunt you later?

By now you're aware of just how much trouble the killer app for the Internet really is. It's a killer. Email wastes time. Email is bothersome. Email is an audit trail just waiting for a hacker or an investigation. Email is a picture of your life that Google stares at daily.

Even with Apple's Mail or any decent email app that manages multiple accounts and pulls every message into a single Inbox, email is what we call a necessary evil. It's evil for sure, and there doesn't seem to be any way to avoid it. Or, is there?

It's time to kill email. -- TeraTalks.

OS X 10.10 and the Mac is Back

OS X 10.10 and the Mac is Back

Next month, Apple is widely expected to lift the veil off the next great version of OS X, assumed to be 10.10 and identified by yet another compelling California place name. Some suggest "Yosemite," though that name actually reminds me of a certain cartoon character, "Yosemite Sam."

I don't know whether that seeming shortcoming would occur to Apple or whether it would make any difference. But I won't debate the issue. The truth is a little more than four weeks away as of this writing, and I can wait. Yes, OS X 10.10 (say that five times fast!) is supposedly known under the code name of "Syrah," but that's for internal use only. -- The Tech Night Owl.

Mac Media Server XBMC 13 'Gotham' Ships

Mac Media Server XBMC 13 'Gotham' Ships

If you have a Mac and Roku, your best media server choice is Plex. However, if you plan to connect your media center Mac directly to a TV, XBMC is the consensus choice and there's a whole number update just out. -- FairerPlatform.

How To Manage and Control Cellular Data Usage on Your iPhone

How To Manage and Control Cellular Data Usage on Your iPhone

Since a fair number of folks are on metered data plans, and 'unlimited' data comes with some strings attached (like throttled speeds over a certain limit), it's a good idea to keep an eye on cellular usage. Fortunately, iOS gives us the tools to manage cellular data down to the level of individual apps. Here's how to monitor data using tools in iOS 7.1.1. -- The Mac Observer.

How to Block Contacts From Calling Your iPhone

How to Block Contacts From Calling Your iPhone

You can block callers from contacting you on your iPhone, and not only will it block their inbound phone calls but also any text messages or FaceTime communication attempts. This is obviously useful for so many reasons, whether it's to avoid a nuisance or a weirdo, and it's simple to use. -- OS X Daily.

Get Data Usage Under Control On Your iPhone

Get Data Usage Under Control On Your iPhone

A while back, we showed you how to get data usage on your Android under control using built-in features of the mobile OS. Today we're doing the same for iPhone users with the exception that you will need to download an app for it. We have found an app that is free so the net cost of getting data under control will be nothing. The app will be used in conjunction with default features of iOS to help you control how many MBs you consume when using your phone on the go. -- AddictiveTips.

How Turning Off Geotagging On Your iPhone Could Save a Rhino's Life

How Turning Off Geotagging On Your iPhone Could Save a Rhino's Life

Do you think fears about geotagged photographs are overblown?

Well, maybe a tweet made today by my friend, Professor Alan Woodward of the University of Surrey, will change your opinion. -- Intego.

How to stop your iPhone from tracking your every move

How to stop your iPhone from tracking your every move

Every few months, iPhone users around the world begin to panic yet again as a new round of tech blog coverage reminds us that Apple's iPhone tracks our every move as part of a 'Frequent Locations' feature. The potentially nifty feature allows iOS to monitor your position in order to determine places you visit most frequently, and this data could really come into play in future versions of Apple's mobile platform by allowing your iPhone to present location-specific information that could be useful, perhaps similar to Google Now. Those concerned with privacy, however, likely want nothing to do with Apple's Frequent Locations feature -- and of course, disabling it couldn't be easier. -- BGR.

OS X: 7 iTunes tips you should know

OS X: 7 iTunes tips you should know

This is not a complete guide to iTunes, just a curated collection of useful features you might not have seen before. -- Computerworld.

The moment I lost my cool presenting on Keynote at Macworld this year (and why)

The moment I lost my cool presenting on Keynote at Macworld this year (and why)

Many who attend my Presentation Magic workshops are in for a surprise. Some come along hoping to learn more about the mechanics of Keynote or Powerpoint; some to overcome their performance anxiety, and others because they've been before and want to know what new goodies I may have to share in an updated workshop. -- Les Posen's Presentation Magic.

Photographers: iMac or Mac Pro?

Photographers: iMac or Mac Pro?

Rather than just do a review of the new Mac Pro and tell you how fast it is vs. any other Mac that Apple has made, I decided to approach this review from a different angle. There was a time when I bought Mac Pro towers because I wanted the fastest Mac available. However, I soon realized that as much as I didn't want to admit it, the Mac Pro is 'overkill' for what I do on a day-to-day basis. Sure, faster is always nicer than slower when it comes to waiting for a process to complete, but honestly I'm rarely waiting for a process to complete these days. Sure, I render video on a weekly basis and it would always be nicer to have those videos render faster, but is the faster render worth the money for a Mac Pro? The answer will of course depend on how much you find yourself waiting on your computer and not being able to do anything else while you're waiting. -- Terry White's Tech Blog.

Students Remember Lectures Better Taking Notes Longhand Than Using Laptops

Students Remember Lectures Better Taking Notes Longhand Than Using Laptops

Psych 101 was about to start, and Pam Mueller had forgotten her laptop at home. This meant more than lost Facebook time. A psychology grad student at Princeton, Mueller was one of the class teaching assistants. It was important she have good notes on the lecture. Normally she used her laptop to take notes, but, without it, she'd have to rely on a more traditional approach.

So she put pen to paper--and found something surprising. -- The Atlantic.

May 05 Monday's News

 

Apple acquires LuxVue, a power-efficient micro-LED display maker

Apple acquires LuxVue, a power-efficient micro-LED display maker

Apple is said to have bought low-power micro-LED maker LuxVue Technology, a deal that could lead to better and more power efficient displays in future devices from the company. -- AppleInsider.

Locating unique playlist tracks and the perils of the 25K track limit

Locating unique playlist tracks and the perils of the 25K track limit

iTunes is, in part, a database, and its smart playlists are just like database queries. In this week's column, I look at an interesting question, which can be resolved with multiple smart playlists. I also discuss what happens when you break through iTunes Match's 25,000 track limit, and answer a question about gifting content to people in other countries. -- Macworld.

New 2014 MacBook Air benchmarks

New 2014 MacBook Air benchmarks

Apple on Tuesday released a minor update to its MacBook Air line of laptops. The changes included a subtle 100MHz increase in processor speed and a welcome $100 decrease in price. And while the faster processor did help the new MacBook Airs in our application tests, the flash storage didn't perform as well as we'd expected.

As with last year's line, the new MacBook Air is available in two 11-inch and two 13-inch standard configurations. All of the models are built around the same Intel 1.4GHz dual-core Core i5 (Haswell) processor. The new processors are a bump up from the 1.3GHz Core i5 processors in the mid-2013 MacBook Air. -- Macworld.

Manage Parental Controls from Another Computer

OS X: Manage Parental Controls from Another Computer

Using OS X's built-in Parental Controls, you can configure your child's computer to let you manage its settings while you're sitting at a different Mac. This'll allow you to look at the logs of your kids' online activity, control what applications they can use, and even stop them from being able to use their computers if they're not behaving. In this Quick Tip, we'll cover it all! -- The Mac Observer.

How to Make the iOS 7.1.1 Touch ID Fix Work For You

How to Make the iOS 7.1.1 Touch ID Fix Work For You

Most iPhone 5s users enjoy and benefit from Apple's biometric authentication called Touch ID. However, since it's introduction, many users have experienced various problems with the fingerprint recognition. The latest iOS 7.1.1 update appears to fix many, if not all, of the outstanding issues. Sandro Cuccia explains what you need to do to properly reconfigure Touch ID so that you can take advantage of the enhancements. -- The Mac Observer.

Monitor System folders to secure your Mac

Monitor System folders to secure your Mac

One of the ways that Apple and third-party developers keep services running in OS X is to use launch agent and launch daemon scripts, which instruct the system launcher to run a specified program, script, or other routine at a designated time or after a specific system event. -- MacIssues.

How to put your Mac to sleep and keep it there

How to put your Mac to sleep and keep it there

Putting your Mac to sleep is perhaps one of the easiest tasks you can do; however, there are several options for doing this that you might not know about, and in addition, if your Mac is either not going or not staying in sleep mode, then there are several things you can try to remedy the situation. -- MacIssues.

Calibrate your Mac's monitor to ensure proper color representation

Calibrate your Mac's monitor to ensure proper color representation

Every monitor you use with your Mac, be it a built-in one or an external one, will have different color output properties. For example, in one monitor you might see more red than another monitor, which may cause color balances to be off either between two monitors you use with the same Mac, or when you view an image on a different Mac. -- MacIssues.

When Hitting 'Find My iPhone' Takes You to a Thief's Doorstep

When Hitting 'Find My iPhone' Takes You to a Thief's Doorstep

Using GPS tracking apps, more people are taking the law into their own hands to recover stolen smartphones, a trend that has law enforcement officials concerned. -- New York Times.

Apple Acquires 21 LuxVue Patents with Some using Sapphire

Apple Acquires 21 LuxVue Patents with Some using Sapphire

In early March we posted a report titled "New Super Bright Nano-Dot Coatings for Sapphire Substrates came to light in Japan this Week." The report covered new ways that sapphire substrates could be used in next generation display backlights. Our cover graphic illustrates just how much brighter a display could be using sapphire as a key substrate while realizing lower power consumption. Yesterday the news of Apple acquiring LuxVue came to light. LuxVue is a specialist in micro-LED screen technologies. Venture Capitalist John Doer of KPCB described LuxVue's technology a "technical breakthrough in displays." Our report today provides technically savvy Apple fans with links to each of LuxVue's 21 patents that are on record so that you could explore the technology that Apple has just acquired. One of the common elements that LuxVue shares with the bright display technology noted in our cover graphic is that both use of a sapphire substrate. -- Patently Apple.

iOS 7 Update Silently Removes Encryption For Email Attachments

iOS 7 Update Silently Removes Encryption For Email Attachments

Apple has removed encrypted email attachments from iOS 7. Apple said back in June 2010 in regards to iOS 4.0: 'Data protection is available for devices that offer hardware encryption, including iPhone 3GS and later, all iPad models, and iPod touch (3rd generation and later). Data protection enhances the built-in hardware encryption by protecting the hardware encryption keys with your passcode. This provides an additional layer of protection for your email messages attachments, and third-party applications.' Not anymore. -- The Hacker News.

Combining PDF documents using Preview

Combining PDF documents using Preview

You can use Preview to move pages from one PDF document to another. -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

How do I get more out of Spotlight on Mavericks Macs?

How do I get more out of Spotlight on Mavericks Macs?

Most of us use OS X's Spotlight to look for things on our Mac, but it can do so much more, as these tips will prove. -- Computerworld.

Remove Duplicates From 'Open With' Option In Right-Click Context Menu

Remove Duplicates From 'Open With' Option In Right-Click Context Menu

Contrary to beliefs held by most Mac enthusiasts, Macs are not the infallible powerhouses, though nowhere near as fallible as the Monkey Wrench that are Windows's Bugs. Fortunately, the underlying UNIX architecture allows you to reinforce your Mac however you want to, as evidenced by another UNIX incarnation, Ubuntu. There was a problem with OS X 10.7 and 10.8 that allowed duplicate entries on a Mac's 'Open With' menu - accessible with a right-click/ ctrl + click -- that has made its way into Mavericks (10.9). It does not sound like a pressing concern, we admit, but it does fall under the category of items that can create problems at the wrong time. Let us take a look at how to address this issue. -- AddictiveTips.

No More Spotlight: Everything That's Wrong With Finding Files On A Mac

No More Spotlight: Everything That's Wrong With Finding Files On A Mac

Let's be honest about this situation. Search sucks. Not just Google, Yahoo, or Bing. Even searching for files on the Mac is a pain.

I understand and appreciate the concept behind OS X's built-in Spotlight app. It indexes files to make the search faster. The problem here is simple. There are too many files and narrowing down the search criteria in Spotlight is cumbersome at best. Is there a better way? -- Mac 360.

How to use Notification Center for iPhone and iPad: The ultimate guide

How to use Notification Center for iPhone and iPad: The ultimate guide

Notification Center is Apple's attempt to bring order and sanity to the myriad alarms, alerts, messages, calls, announcements, and challenges that flood our iPhones, iPods, and iPads every day. With Notification Center, you can choose on an app-by-app basis between unobtrusive banners, un-ignorable popups, and between beeps, buzzes, or nothing at all. You can badge your icons so you know how many items you have pending, and you can have everything listed for you right on your Lock screen, so you know about it immediately, or whenever you're ready. When too many notifications become interruptions, you can set a timer or flip a switch and silence it all for as little or as long as you want. -- iMore.

3 simple ways to clear up "other" memory on your iOS device

3 simple ways to clear up

The truth of the 16GB iPhone and iPad is that they really don't have 16GB of usable space, it's more like 12GB. With storage at a premium and a whole wonderful world of apps just waiting at your finger tips you've probably found yourself looking at your iPhone memory information and quietly cursed the name of Other.

Yes "other" memory, the nonspecific space hog that greedily takes up memory on your phone without adding value to your life. Is there a simple way to reclaim those precious GB back from your phone without restoring it? Yes dear reader there is. Here's how. -- TUAW.

How to find which iOS apps were recently updated and what they changed

How to find which iOS apps were recently updated and what they changed

iOS 7 now allows for the automatic downloading of app updates in the background, which is convenient for users who have a lot of apps installed on their iPad or iPhone. The downside to these automatic updates is that developers sometimes roll out a major overhaul to an app that takes a user by surprise. Even someone experienced as me can be taken aback for a few moments when an app icon changes or a UI is completely different. -- TUAW.

May 02 Friday's News

 

Pioneering the 'connected' approach

Pioneering the 'connected' approach

Universities: institutions at the forefront of research and innovation and yet recently accused of 'dragging their heels' in terms of integrating educational technology.

In February this year, the Chancellor of the Open University told The Telegraph that not enough was being done to allay the fear of technology that some educational professionals experience.

Far from being intimidated by new ed-tech, John Heath, pro-vice chancellor at Birmingham, says there has been a "seamless transition" with staff and students -- Daily Telegraph.

Apple nabs indoor navigation company CEO ahead of anticipated iOS 8 maps push

Apple nabs indoor navigation company CEO ahead of anticipated iOS 8 maps push

Apple has reportedly hired the cofounder and CEO of indoor location startup Wifarer for a "leadership role" -- but did not acquire the company -- in yet another sign that the iPhone maker is gearing up for a strong mapping push in its next-generation mobile operating system. -- AppleInsider.

New Apple retail chief Angela Ahrendts gets official welcome on executive leadership webpage

New Apple retail chief Angela Ahrendts gets official welcome on executive leadership webpage

In an update to its official website late Thursday, Apple's new SVP of Retail and Online Stores Angela Ahrendts was placed on the Apple Leadership roster, signaling her official entry into the company. -- AppleInsider.

Photo editing 101: Master the layer mask

Photo editing 101: Master the layer mask

Remember the last time you gave your walls a fresh coat of paint? You probably used a roll of blue or beige masking tape to cover the baseboards and windows so you wouldn't get paint on them. Masking tape's digital equivalent--called a layer mask--is a timesaving feature in Adobe Photoshop, Photoshop Elements (version 9+), and the affordable yet powerful Pixelmator. Here's a quick primer on how to use this great tool in your digital image editing program of choice. -- Macworld.

This iPhone app scans your videos to pull fantastic still photos

This iPhone app scans your videos to pull fantastic still photos

There are some fantastic photos hidden in the videos you've shot on your iPhone over the years. You just need to know where to look.

That idea's the starting point for new iOS app Vhoto, which uses computer vision technology to intelligently scan through your videos to find and extract the best photographic moments. -- Cult for Mac.

Terminal: Exporting Text from Commands

Terminal: Exporting Text from Commands

Melissa Holt's love of all things Terminal is no secret, and in this Quick Tip, she's going to prove her love once more. She'll cover how to export data from the commands you run in a much simpler way than using pipes or other fancy stuff, so if you need to, you can save pages and pages of output into a text file for easy perusal. -- The Mac Observer.

OS X 10.10 emphasis planned for WWDC, iOS 8 features pushed to iOS 8.1, new Apple TV still in the works

OS X 10.10 emphasis planned for WWDC, iOS 8 features pushed to iOS 8.1, new Apple TV still in the works

Apple may be planning to give the next version of the Mac OS X operating system, 10.10, a larger presence than iOS 8 at this year's Worldwide Developers Conference, according to sources with knowledge of the plans. Because OS X 10.10 will feature an end-to-end redesign, not dissimilar from the scope of the changes to the iPhone and iPad operating system with iOS 7 last year, Apple wants to heavily promote the new system to developers. Apple has also been allocating iOS user interface resources to OS X teams in order to finish up the new OS X design in time for WWDC, and 10.10 development is said to be 'steaming forward...' -- 9to5Mac.

Tip: Drag destination folders to Save dialogue boxes

Tip: Drag destination folders to Save dialogue boxes

When using OS X you will undoubtedly run across the standard save dialogue box, where you specify a location on your drive in which to save your current document. This box can appear in two forms: a compact form where you can specify a name, tags, and then choose a location from the 'Where' menu in which to save your file. Alternatively, you can click the triangle next to the Name field to expand the box and show a filesystem browser. -- MacIssues.

Apple Rethinks the Keyboard with Gesture Controls & In-Key Displays to Support Pictograms, Symbols and Glyphs

Apple Rethinks the Keyboard with Gesture Controls & In-Key Displays to Support Pictograms, Symbols and Glyphs

On May 1, 2014, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals their vision for possible future Mac Keyboards that support gesture controls and multi-colored in-key displays to support the presentation of symbols such as a Safari or app icons for Pages, Keynote and others in addition to supporting different languages and other kinds of keyboard layouts. -- Patently Apple.

Apple Reveals a Few Future CarPlay User Interface Features

Apple Reveals a Few Future CarPlay User Interface Features

On May 01, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals possible future CarPlay user interface features. One such feature is a simple buy button allowing the passenger of the car to make a quick purchase of a tune heard on the radio. Although Apple doesn't mention it, I'm sure that they're working on a "Siri" voice command equivalent that wouldn't be distracting to the driver. Last week we learned that Apple invented a technology likely aimed at Carplay that will not allow a driver to text while their vehicle is running. REPORT UPDATED 8:45 PST: The report now extends to five Apple patents covering CarPlay and iTunes Radio. -- Patently Apple.

Now Your Phone's Tilt Sensor Can Identify You

Now Your Phone's Tilt Sensor Can Identify You

Tiny hardware imperfections in smartphone and tablet accelerometers lead to unique 'fingerprints' within the data they produce, researchers find.

The sensor that lets your phone know which way the screen is oriented also--thanks to minute manufacturing variations--emits a unique data 'fingerprint' that could allow your phone to be tracked, even if all other privacy settings are locked down, researchers say. -- MIT Technology Review.

OS X Mavericks 10.9.3 release nears with bolstered 4K display support

OS X Mavericks 10.9.3 release nears with bolstered 4K display support

Nearly two months after providing developers with the first beta, Apple is closing in on releasing OS X Mavericks 10.9.3 to the public. OS X 10.9.3 will mark the third point-release update to OS X Mavericks, which arrived on the Mac App Store last October. Earlier this week, Apple provided build 13D55 of 10.9.3 to developers, and Apple, today, provided employees with a newer 13D57 build. In addition to the increase in seed frequency, today's internal seed includes a set of release notes. The inclusion of release notes in beta OS X releases typically indicates that a public release is close... -- 9to5Mac.

Managed Client: How to avoid seeing pre-release Apple software updates

Managed Client: How to avoid seeing pre-release Apple software updates

Under certain circumstances, some computers may be offered pre-release Apple software updates. You can use Managed Client to make sure that pre-release software is not offered to Macs using OS X. -- AppleCare Knowledge Base.

Our favorite iOS Apps, May edition

Our favorite iOS Apps, May edition

Just as we did in April, Macworld staffers got together to chat about the best apps they've been using recently. Here are some that have recently captured our imaginations (and perhaps a spot on our homescreens), whether they're tiny apps from budding developers or the top-grossing apps that everyone is using. Our hope is that, while you might recognize some of these apps, others you might never have encountered. All of them, we think, are worth a look. -- Macworld.

Apple email service glitch means you aren't getting certain emails

Apple email service glitch means you aren't getting certain emails

A TUAW reader reports (with evidence) that if you use @me.com, @mac.com or @icloud.com services for your email, you could conceivably never see certain emails in your inbox. If you are getting mail from a "mail merge" service, like Constant Contact, Direct Mail, MaxBulk Mailer, MailChimp or Sailthru you might not see emails sent via those services or any similar product. It could conceivably be affecting services as well, but our tipster wasn't able to test every one of them. Note that the emails are not bounced, which would alert the sender, they are simply deleted entirely without notification to sender or receiver. Also, this only impacts HTML emails -- plaintext emails seem to go through without a problem. -- TUAW.

6 Safari secrets for OS X Mavericks

6 Safari secrets for OS X Mavericks

There are many little-known tricks and tips you can use to improve your experience with Apple's Safari browser. I've selected just six you may not have seen before. -- Computerworld.

Forget Algebra, Geometry, Or Calculus. Use GeoGebra To Learn Math

Forget Algebra, Geometry, Or Calculus. Use GeoGebra To Learn Math

Color me somewhat dated, but I remember the so-called 'new math' and what it did to students back in the day to create a hatred for math.

Even in the world of mathematics there's something new under the sun. It's called GeoGebra, a dynamic math app for your computer that does an interesting mashup of arithmetic, geometry, algebra, and calculus -- Mac 360.

Introducing TechTool Pro 7

Introducing TechTool Pro 7

This is the most advanced version of the acclaimed Macintosh troubleshooting utility created in its 20-year history. Micromat has redeveloped Techtool Pro 7 to be fully 64-bit compatible, which allows the program to run more efficiently on the latest Macintosh computers. We also added a fantastic new RAM test that can find problems which no other utility can; and we also improved many of the testing, repair and maintenance routines. [I used to beta test for these guys in very early versions. I confess I have not needed such a tool in a very long time but this was a good tool. Your mileage may vary.] -- Micromat.

Apple Hiring MIT Researcher With Expertise in Ear-Worn Vital Signs Monitor

Apple Hiring MIT Researcher With Expertise in Ear-Worn Vital Signs Monitor

Apple may be adding to its wearables team, as MIT researcher Eric Winokur will be joining the company in the coming weeks, according to a source who spoke to MacRumors. Winokur, who does research at MIT's Medical Electronic Devices Realization Center, has recently worked on an ear-worn "wearable vital signs monitor." According to his LinkedIn page, one of his specialties is "wearable medical device R&D." -- MacRumors.

Forensic Security Says 'Thanks for nothing, Apple'

Forensic Security Says 'Thanks for nothing, Apple'

iPhone factory reset removes all traces of everything, forever.

Felons wanting to best forensic investigators need only perform a factory reset of all current model iPhones, say forensic security experts.

Apple's decision to encrypt data on the iPhone is responsible for this state of affairs because a factory reset not only wipes data but also erases the decryption key required to reveal the handset's contents, according to Jason Solomon, a forensics investigator with Sydney-based Klein and Co. -- The Register.

Parental Concerns in the Digital Era: An Introduction

Parental Concerns in the Digital Era: An Introduction

Where our children are concerned Internet safety is a must. There will always be unscrupulous individuals looking to creep into a child's online experience. Thankfully there are a number of proven strategies that proactive, engaged parents can use--parental controls and password protections, for example--to keep our children safe online.

Over the coming weeks Intego will be publishing helpful tips that address parental concerns in the digital era. Our Five Minute Family Protection Tips will provide parents with bite-sized practical advice based around family Internet safety and are here to help. -- Intego.

Add time and location-based notifications to reminders

Add time and location-based notifications to reminders

The Reminders app makes it simple to keep track of tasks, grocery lists, and even daily exercises with multilayered lists and checkboxes. You can make these lists even more powerful, however, thanks to time and location-based reminders. -- Macworld.

Net neutrality is worth fighting for: Tell the FCC to enforce net neutrality

Net neutrality is worth fighting for: Tell the FCC to enforce net neutrality

We tend not to branch out into the political discussion here at Mobile Nations all that often. Politics has little bearing on the day-to-day use of mobile devices. But on occasion, things from the political world cross into our little world of smartphones and tablets. Take SOPA back in 2012, for example. Meant to address the real problem of content piracy, SOPA overreached and the reaction of the American people was enough to kill the bill while still in committee.

We're facing another intersection of politics and technology today, and it's time that we the people made our voices heard. Net neutrality is the issue of the day, and the way that governments move on this issue will have far-reaching consequences for decades to come. -- iMore.

May 01 Thursday's News

 

How to gain easy access to your iPhone's most important mail

How to gain easy access to your iPhone's most important mail

Reader Catherine Yee would like easier access to her email. She writes:

Is there a way to make an alias of a mailbox on my iPhone and put it on the home screen so I can access that mailbox more easily? I sometimes need to look back at email I've sent and I hate digging through mailboxes within the Mail app to find it.

I like the way you think. It would be great if, like web clippings, you could place aliases of mailboxes on an iOS device's home screen. But I'm afraid the answer to this one is 'Not possible.'

However, it sounds to me like you've missed a helpful feature introduced with iOS 7. It's this: Within Mail on a device running iOS 7 you can easily choose which mailboxes to view from within Mail's Mailboxes screen. -- Macworld.

How (and why) you should clean up your iTunes tags

How (and why) you should clean up your iTunes tags

In a previous post, I looked at how to tag the media in your iTunes library. I discussed what tags were--metadata that describes your files and helps you find what you want to play. I also looked at which tags you should consider filling in for different types of music, movies, and TV shows.

Now I want to show you how to clean up tags you've already applied. And what defines a 'dirty' tag? Perhaps you have random characters in song names. Or maybe words are misspelled or incorrectly capitalized, or tracks attributed to the wrong artist. Such errors can make it harder to organize your library and find the media you want. These tips and tricks will help you sweep out those cobwebs. -- Macworld.

iOS 7.1.1 Touch ID is not only more accurate, but faster

iOS 7.1.1 Touch ID is not only more accurate, but faster

We knew Apple had improved Touch ID recognition in iOS 7.1.1, but now -- thanks to Redditor iOSecure -- we know how and why.

Apparently, the reason that accuracy would decay over time was down to users screwing up their first scans, when the auto-correction feature needed a perfect start to work properly going forward. -- Cult of Mac.

Creating a kill switch for the OS X VPN client

Creating a kill switch for the OS X VPN client

I live in China so I have to use VPN all the time if I want any kind of stable connection to sites in the west. Unfortunately the VPN will at times randomly disconnect and then all traffic will immediately start going over Chinese Internet again. While this is not a big deal really, I would just prefer not to be logged in to Facebook or Gmail and have my traffic open to be sniffed by the great firewall. It also occurred to me that many people use VPNs in the states in order to safely torrent.

I know some VPN providers have 'Internet kill switches' for their VPN that will cut your Internet connection incase of a disconnect and make sure you are not leaking anything. The problem with these is that they are almost all using openVPN, while I use L2TP over IPSec for my VPN. I searched for a long time for a way to do this and could not find one so I thought of a way to do it on my own. The following is how I set my system up. Please keep in mind that I am not an experienced Terminal user or power user so if anyone knows of a better way to do this please let me know. -- Mac OS X Hints.

Virgin Atlantic to Integrate iBeacon Technology Into London's Heathrow Airport

Virgin Atlantic to Integrate iBeacon Technology Into London's Heathrow Airport

Virgin Atlantic is reportedly gearing up to integrate Apple's iBeacon technology into London's Heathrow Airport, according to Re/code. The airliner will be using beacons sourced from startup Estimote, as the transmitters will be deployed near businesses and terminals to notify users of promotional deals and areas of interest. -- Mac Rumors.

Preparing for the 10.9.3 update

Preparing for the 10.9.3 update

The developer seed builds for the upcoming 10.9.3 update for Mavericks have become more frequent, suggesting Apple is wrapping up the last few bugs that testers have found for this version of OS X and the public release of the update should be coming very soon. -- MacIssues.

Manage OS X Terminal processes and windows with the inspector

Manage OS X Terminal processes and windows with the inspector

If you are a Terminal user, and especially a power user, then you might regularly launch multiple Terminal windows, run various scripts, and have commands running in the background. Unfortunately it may sometimes be difficult to pinpoint which running processes belong to what terminal window. -- MacIssues.

Angry Apple Fans File New Class Action over iOS 7 Problems, the 'Grayed out Issue' and Much More

Angry Apple Fans File New Class Action over iOS 7 Problems, the 'Grayed out Issue' and Much More

David Yastrab, individually and on behalf of all others similarly situated, has filed a class action lawsuit against Apple in California. Much of the complaint revolves around iOS 7 issues and the "Grayed out Issue" in particular. It's clear that many Apple fans were not happy about their iOS 7 experience and so this lawsuit shouldn't come as a surprise. Whether the suit is worth more than $5 million dollars remains to be seen. Our report focuses on the "Nature of the Action" which provides a detailed yet narrowed overview of the lawsuit. -- Patently Apple.

Apple Invents Docking Station with Self-Retracting Connector

Apple Invents Docking Station with Self-Retracting Connector

On May 01, 2014, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals a new docking station concept that is designed to incorporate a more durable and self-retracting connector that can accommodate iDevices small and large. -- Patently Apple.

Startups Experiment with Ads That Know How You Drive

Startups Experiment with Ads That Know How You Drive

A mobile ad company plans to offer deals based on data collected from in-car apps.

As businesses race to connect our homes and cars to the Internet, unleashing new streams of data about our everyday lives, one mobile ad company scents a new opportunity. -- MIT Technology Review.

OpenOffice 4.1

OpenOffice 4.1

Apache has released OpenOffice 4.1, a maintenance update with a variety of tweaks to the free, open-source productivity suite. The release adds the capability to make comments and annotation on text ranges (instead of solely at text positions), improves editing of Input Fields by allowing modification of content directly within the text area, improves the interactive crop feature for use with all graphic object transformations, and improves importing of images (through both file dialog as well as drag and drop). OpenOffice 4.1 now requires Mac OS X 10.7 Lion and later. (Free, 163 MB, release notes, 10.7+)

Hot-rod Hackintoshes perform like the latest Mac Pro

Hot-rod Hackintoshes perform like the latest Mac Pro

Although it looks like a vanilla PC in a boxy case, this machine is a high-performance, custom-built Hackintosh.

This thing is hot! Known as the P280, after its Antec case, this Hackintosh is equivalent in performance to Apple's latest Mac Pro workstation, but costs significantly less. -- Cult of Mac.

A Blast From The Past: Turn A Mac Into A Vintage Terminal

A Blast From The Past: Turn A Mac Into A Vintage Terminal

This is one of those times when I offer up a quick review of an interesting Mac app only to divulge more about myself than originally intended.

If you know what a CRT is, then you understand my dilemma. CRT is short for cathode ray tube. In essence, a CRT is the computer screen from the last century. Me and the green screen go back more years than I care to admit, so it was with mixed emotions that I installed the app Cathode on my Mac. -- BohemianBoomer.

Hackers Focusing on Android, Give Up on iPhone

Hackers Focusing on Android, Give Up on iPhone

That ought to be good news to those of us who are iPhone users, yeah? If you think about it, it does not really come as a surprise, given that for the longest time, Macs were thought to be rather secure. Of course, we know how that story went. Still, Apple seems to hold its position at the head of the pack when it comes to security.

According to F-Secure, a Finnish security firm, cybercriminals have now practically ignored trying to breach Apple's security measures for the its mobile devices. The firm recently conducted a study where they found 277 new threat families of malware -- this in the first quarter of this year alone.

Here's the nice detail for iPhone users: of these 277 threat families, just one family targets the iPhone. One targets Symbian. (Sym-wut?) -- Apple Gazette.

Hip to Heartbleed: 39% of users took steps to protect themselves

Hip to Heartbleed: 39% of users took steps to protect themselves

Here's a side effect of the widespread Heartbleed security vulnerability: Internet users are suddenly more concerned about their personal information.

A Pew Research study also found that 29 percent of Internet users believe their personal information is at risk, while 6 percent of users believe their information was swiped. -- CNET.

Your iPhone Knows Exactly Where You've Been And This Is How To See It

Your iPhone Knows Exactly Where You've Been And This Is How To See It

Apple's phone has a hidden function that records where you've been and how long you spent there. Could be awkward.

According to Apple, the data is collected 'in order to learn places that are significant to you' and improve traffic routing services. The company says the data is stored locally on your iPhone and will not be accessed elsewhere or shared with anyone else. -- Buzzfeed.

Your iPhone Gathers A Lot More Of Your Location Data Than You Thought -- Here's How To Disable It

Your iPhone Gathers A Lot More Of Your Location Data Than You Thought -- Here's How To Disable It

Your iPhone gathers a lot more location data than you may have originally thought.

It's a setting called "Frequent Locations"; as you go about your daily routine, your iPhone makes note of where you are and how long you're there. When it starts detecting patterns, it marks the spot as one such "frequent location." It (rather accurately) assumes workplace location based on where you are during the day and your house address based on where you are at night, and it tracks various repeated locations regardless of time: friends' houses, favorite restaurants and the like.

Here's how to see what your iPhone has identified as your frequent locations, as well as how to disable it. -- Business Insider.

How to hack T-Mobile's breakup plan and save hundreds on an iPhone

How to hack T-Mobile's breakup plan and save hundreds on an iPhone

There's a reason T-Mobile's offer to pay off new customers' early termination fees sounds too good to be true. In certain cases, it's a rotten deal compared to just paying the fee yourself.

However, with a little hackery, you can flip T-Mobile's deal from bad to fantastic -- and save hundreds on a new iPhone (or any smartphone). -- Cult of Mac.

Did you lose your iPhone or iPad? Here's exactly what you need to do to find it

Did you lose your iPhone or iPad? Here's exactly what you need to do to find it

When it comes to your smartphone or tablet, there is absolutely nothing worse than the feeling you get when you realize your device is no longer by your side. First, a moment of sheer terror causes you to freeze in place. Then panic sets in and the frantic rush to retrace your steps and think of where you might have left your device makes accurately retracing those steps incredibly difficult.

But it doesn't have to be such a horrible experience.

Longtime iPhone and iPad users are likely familiar with Apple's iOS device recovery features, but you would be shocked to learn how many people don't know about these features or simply don't bother to set them up. -- BGR.

My Growing Fear Of iCloud And Dropbox

My Growing Fear Of iCloud And Dropbox

Thanks to my day job there isn't much about what goes on in and around internet technology that I don't know about or immersed in daily.

What has me more worried than anything these days is online storage. The cloud. No, I'm not worried about Skynet and the potential for machines to rise up against man. The fear I have is twofold; someone watching my data, and my data getting deleted or altered. -- Mac 360.

Grading Software Fooled By Nonsense Essay Generator

Grading Software Fooled By Nonsense Essay Generator

A former MIT instructor and students have come up with software that can write an entire essay in less than one second; just feed it up to three keywords.

The essays, though grammatically correct and structurally sound, have no coherent meaning and have proved to be graded highly by automated essay-grading software.

From The Chronicle of Higher Education article:

"Critics of automated essay scoring are a small but lively band, and Mr. Perelman is perhaps the most theatrical. He has claimed to be able to guess, from across a room, the scores awarded to SAT essays, judging solely on the basis of length. (It's a skill he happily demonstrated to a "New York Times" reporter in 2005.) In presentations, he likes to show how the Gettysburg Address would have scored poorly on the SAT writing test. (That test is graded by human readers, but Mr. Perelman says the rubric is so rigid, and time so short, that they may as well be robots.)" -- Tech Xplore.

Distracted Driving: All Lip Service With No Legit Solution

Distracted Driving: All Lip Service With No Legit Solution

April was National Distracted Driving Awareness Month.

Unfortunately, the recognition of this month for distracted driving was a hollow gesture -- just like the half-hearted attempts at developing apps that prevent cell phone use while driving.

After a week of trying to find an app that prevents me from all cell phone use from behind the wheel entirely, I've given up. The Distracted Driving Foundation lists about 25 apps on its website -- there are a few more on Apple's App Store -- but I couldn't find a single one that was easy to use. Most were either defunct, required onerous sign-up processes, asked for subscription plans, or simply didn't work as advertised. -- ReadWrite.