I recently found SealsWithClubs, an online poker site that uses Bitcoin and allows U.S. players to play. If you've been jonesing to play online poker and you have, or can get, some Bitcoins, SealsWithClubs is it. They have a Mac client, as well as a browser-based client, Windows, Linux, and Android. Bets on the site are in denominations of 1 "Chip," with a Chip being equal to 0.001BTC, or 1/1000th of a Bitcoin. There are plenty of game withs blinds smaller than a Chip, going down to 0.05/0.10 Chips, which is roughly similar to nickle/dime blinds. I'll offer a more detailed review of the site next week.
PowerPractical has launched the PowerPot X, a 10 watt version of the company's portable charging technology, on Kickstarter. PowerPot X is designed to sit on a fire—be it a camp fire or a gas-powered flame—and turn that heat energy into electricity you can use to charge your mobile devices, and it does it without any moving parts. Cool, right? For outdoorsy folks or anyone prepping for bad weather, the PowerPot line is one of several alternative-energy solutions coming to market to address portable charging, and I like this one because it harnesses energy that is usually otherwise wasted. There are a ton of funding options available, and the company is already very close to its goals, but funding will still get you a discount on a unit when it ships. The video below contains too much back-story, but at the two minute mark, they get to the new model they're working on.
The iPhone version of the Apple Store app has a fun surprise for the holiday season: a free Christmas music sampler. The sampler list includes Ave Maria by II Vollo, Kelly Clarkson singing Silent Night, The Christmas Song from Kool and the Gang, and more. To find the free music offer, just launch the Apple Store app, and scroll down to the "Holiday Cheer" section. You need to be in the United States to take advantage of the offer, and it only appears in the iPhone version of the Apple Store app.
I don't have enough words to describe the awesome in this video. Painting—even drawing—have always been voodoo to me. I can't do either kind of art, but this painting of Morgan Freeman seems more like epic-level magic. No, it's like someone asked me to watch a movie of a guy painting Morgan Freeman on his iPad, and somewhere towards the end, knocked me out, magically traded the painting for a photograph, and then magically woke me up so that I didn't know I was knocked out and left me sitting there, mouth agape, awesomefied. It was created and filmed by Kyle Lambert, and if you haven't watched it yet, do so now. It's way cool.
Michael Paul Smith is a genius with perspective. The photographer has been making a fictional town he calls "Elgin Park" for 25 years using perspective to create some absolutely amazing shots. I don't want to take away the sense of wonder I enjoyed when I saw the article, so I won't tell you any more. Instead, head over to the We all bleed the same color blog and check out the full article, which includes a bunch of Mr. Smith's photos with some behind-the-scenes photos that explain how he did it. In the photo below, for instance, not everything is as it seems.
Oooooooh, Richard M. Stallman, you've been served! And this one has the makings of a genuine nerd throwdown. User landondyer on software development site GitHub has posted an open source project called kasm, a "simple two-pass 6502 assembler." What makes it entertaining to me is the ABRMS license under which he published it. ABRMS stands for "Anyone But Richard M Stallman," and true to its name, the license allows anyone in the world to use the software in any way they want. Well, anyone but Richard M. Stallman, who is expressly prohibited from, "mak[ing] use of or redistribut[ing] this program or any of its derivatives." Richard M. Stallman is the father of the GNU license, a license that requires any software using code covered by the GNU license to be freely available for anyone else to "use, study, share (copy), and modify the software." The GNU license is a rallying point for many in the open source software community, especially those who see it as a movement, while others see it as the bane of software innovation. I'm not taking sides on this issue (there's a time and place for GNU), but the ABRMS license cracked me up. (Courtesy of Denis Dzyubenko, via Florian Mueller) (Image made with help from Shutterstock)
Some things are just begging to be LEGO kits, and when they're designed by Pixar's own team, it'd be a travesty if they didn't end up on store shelves. That's the case with the WALL-E kit that's up for a vote as a CUUSOO design. Here's how this works: People submit their designs to LEGO's CUUSOO project, and if they get enough votes the company turns them into real shipping products. The WALL-E proposal comes from Pixar's Angus MacLane, and it looks absolutely fantastic. It'd be a shame if WALL-E didn't come to life through LEGO, so go cast your vote and give the lovable little robot a chance.
Our own Nancy Carroll Gravley spent some with Chuck Joiner, Michael T. Rose (TUAW), and Steve Sande (TUAW) on the MacJury video podcast, and the topic of discussion was gift suggestions for the holidays. They talk about a wide variety of products, including chargers, cases, a campstove, fitness gear, and more. You can watch MacVoices #13202: The MacJury’s Holiday Gift Guide #2 below, or head over to the MacJury website.
G3 Studios is looking to fund development of a role playing game (RPG) called Deathfire: Ruins of Nethermore for Mac, Windows, and Linux through Kickstarter. The company is $121,000 towards its funding goal of $390,000, and that means Mac gaming fans have a great opportunity to put their money to work. The project is being headed by gaming veteran Guido Henkel, and the company's goal is to make a single player, party-based RPG with turn-by-turn combat. In the promo video below, Mr. Henkel shows off the great graphics, very interesting game play features, and his approach in designing the game. There are a ton of funding options ranging from $25 for a digital download to $1,000 that lets you design an NPC that will be used in the game, and higher.
Rovio rolled out a new update for Angry Birds that adds an extra 30 levels, bringing the total up to 495, just in time for the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. Along with the new levels, the game gained three new potions to change the appearance of the pigs, and the Bomb bird now has a shockwave power that lets users add an electrical shock whenever a bomb detonates. Angry Birds for the iPhone is priced at US$1.99 and $2.99 for the iPad. The games are available at Apple's iTunes-based App Store.
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