Recent Articles By Dave Hamilton [RSS]
Cirque du Mac is happening on Friday, March 28th, 2014 and this time... this year... this party goes to eleven! (or maybe 11:30 if we're all feeling energetic!). That's right, folks, we've partied through a decade of Cirque du Mac together and now it's time to celebrate that win. Cirque will, of course, have something for everyone (well, everyone who likes to have fun, that is).
I returned from vacation today to find that last week Buffalo introduced not one but three new router models that all include the über-flexible DD-WRT open-source firmware. Long-time MacGeekGab listeners know I'm a huge fan of DD-WRT, as it allows me to run enterprise-grade services like a VPN server, multiple VLANs, QoS, shell access and more on my consumer routers ... at consumer router prices. The only issue with DD-WRT is the hoops one must typically jump through to get it installed on unsupported routers. Buffalo has taken the pain (and risk) out of that process by pre-installing – and supporting – the DD-WRT firmware for you.
Buffalo's WZR-1750DHPD is a dual-band (and dual-core CPU) router with the same (or more) range and speed as Apple's latest AirPort Extreme, and now includes DD-WRT to allow you access to way more features than you'll ever get from Apple. With an MSRP of $189.99 you'll see this selling for less than that shortly. For those who want to save some money and still go dual-band (albeit not 802.11ac), the $109.99 WZR-600DHP2D is coming soon, as is the $59.99 single-band WHR-300HP2D. All will run DD-WRT, making these my new favorite routers to recommend.
Heading to Macworld/iWorld or SXSW this month? Then hop on board quickly with this Trade Show Survival Kit our deal folks have put together. First inside the kit is the AViiQ Portable Power Bank. This is capable of pushing out 2A of iPad-fueling power and has TWO USB ports, so you can charge two iPhones at the same time. I used this exact model on vacation last week and it rocks. Then, dig deeper in the box and find the Karma 4G HotSpot. This battery-powered hotspot delivers average speeds of 3-6Mbps and allows up to 8 devices to connect simultaneously. No contract, and just $14/GB when you need it. Check it out. Deal ends in three days, after which the price jumps from $99 to $159.
Sign-up between now and Monday for this fantastic course being offered through our deal partners at Stack Social. You'll learn XCode 5 and Objective-C and build 14 iOS 7 apps through the course of your training. Normally this course is $499 but if you sign up in the next 3 days it's all yours for just $59 (yep, an 88% savings!). Start a new hobby or change your career (or, if you're lucky, both!) by signing up today. All you need is a Mac capable of running Snow-Leapord (or later).
Our deals partners at StackSocial have put together quite the bundle for us today. Focused on photography and design, this bundle will appeal to users of all levels. FaceFilter 3 lets you apply skin and lens effects, SnapHeal (is amazing! and) lets you literally remove pesky objects (like people!) from photos, Focus uses liveBlur to highlight the important parts of your photo, ColorStokes lets you add selective color to black and white images, and Marked 2 lets you get live previews while writing in Markdown! Also included in the bundle are FX Photo Studio, Live Interior 3D, Sparkbox and a collection of high-quality vector graphics from Vectorain. Unless you already have all of these apps buying the bundle just makes sense!
On June 15, 1983, Steve Jobs gave a talk at the Aspen Design Conference in Aspen, Colorado. He was, as usual, his visionary self, predicting things like ubiquitous portable email, the iPad, wireless networking, and more (the full speech is available for your listening pleasure). He used an Apple Lisa to manage a six-projector setup and, after the speech, conference organizers asked Jobs for something they could include in a conference-themed "time tube" (because tubes are cooler than capsules): after brief contemplation Jobs surrendered his Lisa's mouse and into the time tube it went. Since then the time tube was lost to, well, time. Time and re-landscaping. Lost, that is, until National Geographic's Diggers did what they do, and they found it. And yes, the mouse was there, in tact and pristine. Thanks to CNET for publishing the video.
Rain Design's iSlider earned high marks when TMO's own Nancy Gravley reviewed it last year. This unique iPad stand can hold any model iPad in landscape, portrait or reclined modes, and folds up to travel quite well, too. Now you can get yours and save $10 in the process. With free shipping, this is the best price we've found, and we're told supplies are limited.
A common issue plaguing long-time iOS developers is the desire to merge the free and pro versions of an app, instead utilizing in-app purchases, while still preserving existing users' paid-for features. Apple doesn't make it obvious how to accomplish this, but our friends at DigiDNA have found a creative solution using free in-app purchases.
Sometimes gems pop up, and this one exists in the form of six minutes of geek bliss. Woz (Apple employee #1), Daniel Kottke (technically employee #12, but really was the first paid employee of Apple in the garage), and Rod Holt (employee #5) chat through the very early days of Apple, including Woz's point-to-point soldering techniques, blowing up a few things, and where to put the solder when you don't have a third hand. This is truly a captured moment of three old friends losing themselves in the pure geekiness of it. Awesome.