Recent Articles By Dave Hamilton [RSS]
In what perhaps will be my final post before Thanksgiving, I would like to offer my thanks to Smile, this week's sponsor here at TMO. Our focus for this spot is on PDFPen, the all-purpose PDF editing tool for the Mac. Our world lives half in paper and half online, and PDFs are the bridge between those halves. And while we can all create PDFs as easily as we can print them (hint: check the menu in the lower left of your Mac's print dialog), to modify them you need PDFPen.
Today we here at TMO are announcing something new: Deals! Of course, long-time TMO readers know that deals are nothing really new – they are a part of our DNA. We just haven't been doing a lot of them lately, and the reason for that is we've been putting together a partnership with the folks over at StackSocial. With their help we now have an entire deals site for you to peruse – complete with its own specific Apple/Mac section – and we'll regularly be bringing you new deals to look at. With that in mind, we figured this "Think Different" T-Shirt was exactly the right way to start. Check it out, and enjoy. And let us know what you think!
We first heard from Nanodots two years ago when they came around to tell us about their original Nanodots: small neodymium magnets that you can mash and put together to build all kinds of things. We loved them and raved about them on Mac Geek Gab. And frankly, we haven't been able to put them down since. In addition to using them to craft cool shapes, Nanodots just feel good to play with. They're the ultimate stress relief toy, way more satisfying than all those other balls. Well, it turns out some folks just don't like the idea of kids playing with small magnets (and potentially swallowing them). Good thing for Nanodots that they had a new idea: GYRO. GYRO hasn't shipped yet, but will in December if you order soon. GYRO solves the swallowing problem by making the magnets bigger – golf-ball sized – and way cooler: the balls are plastic and the magnets are inside... in a gyroscope configuration. The video is worth watching and, if our bets are right, we'll have new, bigger balls to play with just in time for Christmas.
Earlier today, Coin announced the pre-sale of their upcoming credit-card consolidation device. Shaped to be the size (and thickness) of a credit card, Coin is actually a battery-operated, low-energy Bluetooth device onto which you can store up to eight (8) different credit cards (its companion iPhone app can store the rest of your cards if you have more than eight). When you're ready to make a purchase you select which card you'd like Coin to become, and the mag stripe on Coin spits out the info from your selected card. Simple premise, and you get to carry just one card instead of eight. Cool Stuff Found, indeed. I ordered one. But what impressed me more was just how many people stood up and found all the reasons Coin wouldn't work. That's my metric for something that's bound to be a success, and this one tweet stream is enough to convince me these folks have a winner on their hands. Cool, indeed!
Dave Hamilton has known for a year now that he'd be getting the Retina iPad mini as soon as it came out. The iPad Air gave him some pause but, in the end, the new mini won out and he's here to share with us his initial thoughts after having the device for just under twenty-four hours.
As a "perk" for MacTech attendees, the non-profit organization, New Starship, setup a full replica of the Enterprise NCC-1701-D bridge from Star Trek: The Next Generation. According to New Starship Founder and CEO Huston Huddleston, these props are partially from the (now defunct) Vegas experience and mostly from the touring production thereof. A dozen images and more details await... after the jump!
An inside source at American Airlines confirmed today to The Mac Observer that AA has received FAA approval and will go live with gate-to-gate use of personal electronics starting at 5:00pm CST today. Good news for everyone flying AA to MacTech this week!
Cyan, creator of immersive-world games Myst and Riven, has been hard at work for the past few years bringing their existing library of games to iOS. But they've also had a few new ideas kicking around, and they're kicking one of them, Obduction, to Kickstarter. This isn't a sequel to the Myst storyline, but it does find them going back to what they do best: creating another world in which you play the game. They started with a question: "What happens to a person who is abducted?" You, the player, are taken to a faraway planet. In the middle of the bizarre landscape you find an old farmhouse with a white picket fence... and you find you're not the only one who's been abducted. You can fund Obduction via Kickstarter or PayPal (and they'll refund PayPal payments if the Kickstarter doesn't fund).
The Mac Observer is planning to interview Apple developers at MacTech 2013 in Los Angeles next week. If you’re a Mac or iOS developer and are attending MacTech, read on for information on how to set up an interview with TMO's Dave Hamilton.
Over the past few days I've had the pleasure to play with and listen to the latest offering from Sonos, the PLAY:1, and I'm amazed. They've either discovered magic or decided to lower their margins because, at US$199, the PLAY:1 now opens the door for many more prospective Sonos customers than before without sacrificing any quality at all. Yes, compared to the now middle(-sized) Sonos child (the PLAY:3) the PLAY:1 sounds different, but to my ears neither better nor worse. The new PLAY:1 has a bit more midrange than the PLAY:3 but that's just fine. The size and the price of this make it either a perfect entry point for someone into the Sonos world, or a perfect add-on for the kitchen or bedroom where you're wishing you had a Sonos unit. Buy two and you're in stereo mode. Or add 'em to your Playbar for true rear-channel surround sound. We went into a longer discussion about it during today's Mac Geek Gab #470 if you want to hear more (along with the story of how I set them up).