Recent Articles By Bryan Chaffin [RSS]
The staff at The Mac Observer has been busy all over the Interwebs, including video podcasts and radio interviews you can stream. Bryan Chaffin and John Martellaro appeared on the Tech Night Owl radio show, and Jeff Gamet was interviewed on video as part of Chuck Joiner's Road to Macworld series.
Good news, fans of Pixar's The Incredibles: a sequel is, at long last, in the works. Disney CEO Bob Iger told analysts and investors that Brad Bird, the writer and director of the first movie, is working on a script for a sequel.
Have you seen Automatic Link? It's a device that connects directly to your car's onboard computer and relays the data to your iPhone or Android device. The app can then give you feedback about your driving—if you then act on that feedback, your mileage could improve. You also get detailed diagnostic information, the kind of information normally available only to your mechanic, including decoding your Check Engine light. Cool, right? The device is available now for US$99.95 (no subscription required), it works only in the U.S., and it works with, "just about any gasoline engine car sold in the U.S. since 1996." See our review for more information.
Apple has launched a page on iTunes dedicated to films that were funded through Kickstarter campaigns. A subsection of the "Independent" category, "Films Funded on Kickstarter" debuted featuring Veronica Mars.
We have a deal on a cool stand for iPads (and other tablets) designed around watching videos and movies. It's a stand with a built-in rechargeable battery that powers stereo speakers. The stand is adjustable, and the battery will power the speakers for up to 8 hours. Your iPad sees the speakers through Bluetooth, meaning no wires are necessary. Thanks to our friends at StackSocial, we can offer it to you US$45.99—it has an MSRP of $70.
Apple is about to replace the US$399 iPad 2 with a $399 iPad 4, a move that would dramatically increase the value of Apple's entry-level iPad price point. Online reports say that iPad 4 units have been delivered to Apple Store locations with instructions not to open them until Tuesday, March 18th.
If you've ever wondered what it was like working for the late Steve Jobs, check out what Allison Johnson has to say. Ms. Johnson was Apple's Vice President of World Wide Marketing for Apple from 2005 to 2011, when she left to found advertising company West. During her tenure at Apple, she oversaw the launch of marketing campaigns such as "Mac vs. PC" and "There's an App for That," and she often worked directly with Steve Jobs. She was recently interviewed at the 99U conference by Behance’s Scott Belsky, and the topics of discussion included her time at Apple and Mr. Jobs. Among the interesting quotes, she said, “He spent as much time in my world as he did in Jony’s world. Those were the two parts of the company he cared a lot about.” Check out the full interview in this video. [Via Cult of Mac]
Wow, talk about a Kickstarter project aimed directly at me! Evan Balster has developed software for the Mac and PC called imitone that takes the notes you sing and turns them into MIDI signals. I can't tell you how many songs I've started by humming something only to forget it before I sit down with a guitar. In fact, I've taken to recording Voice Memos on my iPhone where I sing various parts and offer notes to myself on what I'm thinking. With imitone, I could sing them to my Mac (note to Evan, bring imitone to iOS, please!) and import the MIDI data directly to Logic and put together a quick demo. I say Logic, imitone's MIDI data works with any MIDI software. The software is fully functional, but the Kickstarter money will be used to better refine the Interface with a professional designer for commercial release. Evan has already raised more than US$18,600 of his $20,000 goal, and funding options that get you a copy of the software start at $25.
Apple has begun charging customers for online chat support on products that are out-of-warranty. The company will charge US$19.99 per incident for such support, though customers can request an exemption.
We have a killer deal on a fun toy for you, Griffin's MOTO TC Rally Car, an RC car you control with your iPhone through a companion app. This USB-rechargeable car can be raced on pavement, and it has impact sensors that detect damage from other drivers and obstacles. You can add armor (that slows you down), and it's usable with iPhone 5/5c/5s, iPhone 4s, iPod touch (5th gen.), iPad 3, 4, and Air, and the iPad mini. It retails for US$99, but in this TMO deal, you can get it for $39.99, an offer that expires in 11 days.