New Uses For Old Power Macs

9 hours, 38 minutes ago · Kelly Guimont · Cool Stuff Found

Over at designboom we get a look at another use for the slightly-less-than-current hardware: Furniture! Klaus Geiger couldn't find it in his heart to forsake these aluminum beauties, and found a way to keep them around. After scooping out the insides (and in some cases creating drawers), he added some wood or some glass and ended up with some really nice looking pieces. I love the wood and metal combinations, and having one of the wheeled carts would be super useful at my house. It's also really nice to see the office furniture made of old towers. I have to give props to Klaus for finding another use for these machines, even though the insides are not so useful, the outsides are still very pretty.

Apple Pay is Soaring While Competitors Crash and Burn

9 hours, 43 minutes ago · John Martellaro · Particle Debris

Large companies have large ambitions. When powerful tech companies come crashing into people's lives with products that give them pause, they naturally turn to a safe oasis. It's that human element, an Apple strength, that makes the company's products alluring. This week, Microsoft and Amazon were reminded of that while they watched Apple Pay become a warmly embraced product.

The Camera Lens Mug: $19.99

1:47 PM EDT, Oct. 24th, 2014 · Bryan Chaffin · TMO Deals

The Camera Lens Mug: $19.99

If you have a photographer in your life, just look at the image, click the link, and buy it. You already get it. For everyone else, the Camera Lens Mug is a coffee mug that looks like a camera lens. Think: bring your own refreshments to a place where you can't bring your own liquids, but you can bring your camera. It has a rubber grip, a stainless steel lining, and it looks like a camera lens. Come on, that's rad. It's $19.99, making it a fine gift, too.

TMO Daily Observations: 2014-10-24

1:19 PM EDT, Oct. 24th, 2014 · Jeff Gamet · Daily Observations Podcast

Daily Observations Podcast

It's time for fitness tracker makers to get worried because Apple and Nike are teaming up. Kelly Guimont and John Martellaro join Jeff Gamet to talk about personal tech and how Apple is changing the market, plus they offer up their take on Fitbit's lack of HealthKit support.

Apple, Nike Teaming Up on Wearable Tech Project

11:10 AM EDT, Oct. 24th, 2014 · Jeff Gamet · News

Nike may have killed its FuelBand fitness tracker, but that doesn't mean the company is out of the wearable tech game. Company CEO Mark Parker says Nike is working with Apple on new wearable technology that will be less obtrusive but will still work with devices that are already available.

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Knowing Apple and Nike are working together on new wearable tech should be a big red flag for other fitness and health tracker makers. It's time for everyone to step up their game or risk getting left behind.

Kickstarter Project: Mouse Guard LEGO Mini Figures

9:37 AM EDT, Oct. 24th, 2014 · Jeff Gamet · Cool Stuff Found

David Petersen's Mouse Guard is a series of wonderfully told and illustrated stories that follows the adventures of mice sworn to protect their realm and all who pass through, and now Alice Finch hopes to imortalize them in the form of LEGO minifigs. Just to be clear: LEGO minifig Mouse Guard. As they say, OMG. Bricks of Mouse Guard will include minifig mouse heads in gray, brown, reddish brown and tan, along with The Black Axe, Trisam's flagon, Lieam's sword, Kenzie's staff and lantern, and Aynslee's flagon. Alice is a master LEGO builder, and her work is truly impressive. I can't wait to see her Bricks of Mouse Guard in the flesh — or plastic. There's still 30 days left in the Kickstarter, so there's still time to hit the US$15,000 goal and stretch goals, too.

OS X Yosemite: Handing Calls Off to Your iPhone

8:48 AM EDT, Oct. 24th, 2014 · Melissa Holt · TMO Quick Tip

For today's Quick Tip, we'll go over how Yosemite and iOS 8 will let you continue a phone call started with your Mac on your iPhone, so if you've gotta jet, you don't have to end your conversation. For those of you who thought they could use "I need to hang up my Mac" as an excuse to stop chatting with someone annoying, we apologize for this article.

If Microsoft Made a Smart Watch…

7:32 PM EDT, Oct. 23rd, 2014 · Kelly Guimont · Cool Stuff Found

Apple has announced a smartwatch we'll get to see next year. Google has released Android Wear to create Android powered smartwatches, and Samsung has one too. When you think of big tech companies, the only one left who hasn't gotten in on the action is Microsoft. Well Owen Williams took a crack at designing it, and I think he got pretty close to what Redmond would theoretically release. I think it'd be four quadrants of color like a Windows logo, but otherwise I think he nailed it. I think it would be called the Microsoft Windows Mobile Wearable Edition For Wrists (since Microsoft is just at good at naming as numbering). See it below:

Learn Apple’s Swift Programming Language for $19

4:34 PM EDT, Oct. 23rd, 2014 · Bryan Chaffin · TMO Deals

Learn Apple's Swift Programming Language for $19

Today's deal is called Learn Swift, a developer training package designed to teach you Apple's new Swift programming language. It has 95 lectures that focus on real-world examples, and it features more than 4 hours of video content. It will also teach you how to use Xcode’s new .playground file, and the training materials is regularly refreshed. This package retails for $99, but through our deal, you can get it for $19.

TMO Daily Observations: 2014-10-23

1:50 PM EDT, Oct. 23rd, 2014 · Jeff Gamet · Daily Observations Podcast

Daily Observations Podcast

It's Yosemite-pallooza on Daily Observations today, plus Jeff is back on the job. Kelly Guimont and John Martellaro join Jeff Gamet to talk John's OS X Yosemite review, why you should — or shouldn't — upgrade, and how you can dial your iPhone from your Mac, too.

Pixelmator for iPad Hits Apple’s App Store

11:03 AM EDT, Oct. 23rd, 2014 · Jeff Gamet · Product News

Pixelmator for the iPad, first shown off during Apple's iPad Air 2 launch event earlier this month, hit the App Store Thursday morning. The image and photo editor has been available on the Mac for some time, but until now hasn't been an option on the iPad.

The Mac Observer Spin The Mac Observer Spin is how we show you what our authors think about a news story at quick glance. Read More →

Pixelmator has the potential to out-Photoshop Photoshop on the iPad. That's pretty big.

Apple Wins GPNE Patent Lawsuit, Calls Company a Patent Troll

10:15 AM EDT, Oct. 23rd, 2014 · Jeff Gamet · News

GPNE lost its patent infringement lawsuit against Apple on Wednesday,after which the iPhone and iPad maker promptly called the company a patent troll — a term it was barred from using during the trial. GPNE accused Apple of designing its mobile devices around its years-old pager patent and asked the court to bar the use of "patent troll" in the proceedings.

The Mac Observer Spin The Mac Observer Spin is how we show you what our authors think about a news story at quick glance. Read More →

The only win GPNE got out of this trial was keeping Apple from calling it a patent troll in court. Turns out that was a pretty short lived victory.

Apple Dropping SSL 3.0 for Push Notifications in Wake of Poodle Security Flaw

9:08 AM EDT, Oct. 23rd, 2014 · Jeff Gamet · News

Apple plans to drop support for SSL 3.0 for Push notifications following the discovery of the Poodle SSL 3.0 security flaw. The Mac, iPhone and iPad maker will transition to TLS on October 29, and is warning developers to update their apps to support the more secure protocol.

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Heatbleed, Shellshock, and Poodle are all big security risks in SSL, so its good to see Apple and other companies actively moving away from supporting the older security protocol in favor of TLS.

Mark Zuckerberg Wows Chinese Crowd with 30 Minute Interview in Chinese

8:40 PM EDT, Oct. 22nd, 2014 · Bryan Chaffin · Cool Stuff Found

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg went on a major charm offensive in China by giving a 30 minute interview where he answered everything in Mandarin Chinese. That was clever, for sure, but even more clever was posting a video of the interview to Facebook. The interview was at Tsinghua University in Beijing, where the university announced Mr. Zuckerberg was joining its School of Economics and Management Advisory Board. Again, clever. As noted by Wired, Facebook is banned in China—and boy, oh boy, did his Mandarin performance have this particular crowd wrapped around Mr. Zuckerberg's finger. Clearly he's taking a long view on entering the world's largest market, and this was a smart step in that campaign. Wired also noted that Mr. Zuckerberg learned Mandarin in 2010 as that year's self-improvement goal. I'd love for any Mandarin speakers to offer up their thoughts on his performance in the comments. The full video is available on Facebook and may require Flash.

How to Use Yosemite’s New Batch-Renaming Feature

8:06 PM EDT, Oct. 22nd, 2014 · Melissa Holt · TMO Quick Tip

Yay, Yosemite's here! And Melissa Holt's all excited. For her first Quick Tip on this new version of OS X, she's chosen the new batch-renaming feature, which you can use to change a bunch of filenames at once in exactly the ways you specify. Isn't it nice when we get new abilities that were previously only available with third-party software? 

How to Make Calls from Yosemite the Geeky Way

7:59 PM EDT, Oct. 22nd, 2014 · Kelly Guimont · Tips

With iOS and Yosemite installed, you can finally do things you saw in the WWDC Keynote like make phone calls from  your Mac. Sure there's the regular ways to do it, but if you want to dial up your phone call game, Kelly has some alternate methods to help you show off.