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.
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.
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:
If Microsoft made a smart watch…. pic.twitter.com/NKRRVK4bbA— Owen Williams (@ow) October 20, 2014
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.
Apple posted the full video for its "It's Been Too Long" media event, which was held Thursday, October 16th. The company announced iPad Air 2, iPad mini 3, iMac with Retina 5K display, new Mac mini models, launch dates for Apple Pay, the release of WatchKit SDK, and the release of OS X Yosemite and iOS 8.1. It has a running time of 1 hour, 19 minutes, and 8 seconds, and it's embedded below.
Jonathan Mann releases a song a day on his YouTube channel. You may remember him from the iOS Autocomplete Song, and today we get a new tune from him about yesterday's Apple Event. Titled "Chairman Honeycrisp," Jonathan calls out some of the highlights of the day's event. We get code names, an autocorrect fail, and a catchy chorus for humming the rest of the day. He does this every day, so if you don't like this one, you can always try again tomorrow or browse the archives.
Included with the announcement of new iPads yesterday we saw Apple SIM, a multi-carrier-capable SIM card baked into the cellular models of the new devices allowing customer choice of data carriers. There are some limits, of course, mostly that carrier partners thus far only include three US carriers: AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile. If you want to use overseas data partners or don't have a new iPad, well, you're out of luck with Apple SIM. GigSky, however, has been allowing this functionality for almost two years, providing a multi-carrier data SIM usable in over 100 different countries, included here in the USA. You simply launch their iOS app and buy whatever data you need right inside the app. In many countries your GigSky SIM will get you 10MB of free data, enough to get a quick glance at your email and, if necessary, buy more data. No more getting off the plane and having to hunt down a SIM. Just head straight to your hotel room and GigSky has you covered. GigSky SIMs cost just US$19.95, and a la carte data options begin at $10. Definitely worth checking out.
Apple posted the 30 second spot called "iMac with Retina 5K display - The Evolution of Retina" to YouTube Thursday. Like the other videos released today, this one was unveiled during the company's "It's Been Too Long" media event. The spot starts with the original iPhone 4with Retina display, and flips through subsequent generations of iPhones, iPads, and Macs to feature a Retina display, each showing a little bit more of the same high-resolution video than the one before it. It's a very clever illustration of just how much bigger Apple's iMac with Retina 5K display is than everything else around.
Apple has posted the video "Introducing iMac with Retina 5K Display" to YouTube. Hosted by Dan Riccio, Apple's Senior Vice President of Hardware Engineering, this video focuses on the Retina 5K display in particular, explaining some of the technology that went into the device, including the new inventions Apple came up with to make it work. It also offers a use case for a professional videographer. The video was unveiled during the company's "It's Been Too Long" media event held earlier on Thursday.
Apple published the iPad Air 2 - Reveal video to YouTube Thursday. The video was debuted during the company's "It's Been Too Long" media event earlier, and it plays on the original commercial for the iPad Air that showed the device being thinner than a pencil. In the new piece, which is only 32 seconds long, a laser slices off a good chunk of the pencil to make the point that the iPad Air 2 is even thinner.
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