I just learned that Tomas Moyano is awesome. A designer living in Argentina, Mr. Moyano has put together the sexiest, most gorgeous Apple iWatch mockup I've seen. With everybody and their brother wanting to know what Apple is cooking up in wearables, this outside mockup left me drooling and wanting one on my wrist, and pronto. In a series of images, Mr. Moyano laid out what he thinks Apple's device could look like (round), what features it might have (syncing, camera, music streaming, and a battery of biomedical sensors), and specs. I have no idea if Apple could fit all that stuff in this kind of form factor, but if so, giddy up! There's a lot more in the full gallery, so check it out. About the only thing it's missing is an actual watch app.
We have a deal for you today for the TOCCs Ultra Slim 10 Hour Battery Case for iPhone 5 and iPhone 5s. As the name suggests, it's a slim battery case for your iPhone that has up to 10 hours of additional power for your iPhone—2,200mAh in total. Through our friends at StackSocial, we're able to offer it for US$24.95 (it has a retail price of $80). You can control when the battery case is being used by turning it on or off, putting you in direct charge of your extra power. Plus, it's slim, meaning that people won't be asking you why you're carrying a watermelon in your pocket.
Today I bring you the opportunity to participate in a little science by helping to fund development of an ARC Plasma Speaker. Why would you do this? Not because it's the best sounding speaker on the planet, no. It's far from that, but with an ARC Plasma Speaker you can make sound through a arc of plasma running at 30,000 volts. Come on, right? Who doesn't want to do that? Watch the video if you aren't familiar with the concept. The company—ExcelPhysics—was originally trying to raise US$10,000, but they've blown by that goal and have raised more than $41,000 with 18 days to go. Funding options that get you a kit to build your own ARC Plasma Speaker start at $99. For $199, they'll ship it to you fully assembled. Either way, it's nerdvanna!
Apple has expanded its Apple Store iPhone trade-in program to Canada. The company is offering up to CN$275 to Canadian customers who bring in their old iPhone to trade in towards a new one.
One complaint I heard over and over when iOS 7 shipped was that many of the colors used in apps and icons looked more like they came from cartoons. Apple addressed part of that with iOS 7.1 by making the neon green phone and messages icons less garish, and by giving us a setting to darken up many of the colors in apps, too.
The Curta hand cranked calculator was introduced in 1948. Developed by Curt Herzstark, it can do basic arithmetic and, a bit laboriously, square roots. This pepper grinder-like black cylinder is mechanically complex, beautifully made and ingenious.
Even though it remained popular in specific areas, such as sports car rallies even into the 1980s, it was generally superseded by the classic slide-rule in the 1950s and 60s. But who knows? Perhaps in the back of Jony Ive's mind, there loomed the concept of a black computational cylinder that ultimately resulted in the design of the late 2013 Mac Pro.
Computational speed: Looks like a blazing hertz or two.
iOS 7 took away visual cues like borders and shapes to easily identify buttons in apps, but that feature is back with the release of iOS 7.1. No more random tapping on words to see if they're buttons, and adding shapes to in-app buttons is easy to do.
Apple released iOS 7.1 on Monday, packing in a host of new features and improvements. Chief among them is the official rollout of CarPlay, the company's new automobile interface for iOS devices. Apple also added a way of controlling how long Siri listens to you, and the company added new features to iTunes Radio.
Samsung and Apple have both agreed to drop some patents from their upcoming mobile device infringement trial, including two of Samsung's standard-essential patents. Samsung dropped a third patent from the case, too, bringing the number of claims it'll pursue in the trial down to two.
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Apple and Samsung may not be able to reach a settlement in their ongoing patent infringement fight, but they can at least find places where working together is an option. Agreeing to drop some patents from this trial will reduce the case's complexity, although Samsung can file a new case centered on the patents it dropped if it wants.
Apple added a new iTunes Festival channel to Apple TV over the weekend so its SXSW concert series can be viewed from the comfort of your own couch. Viewers will be able to watch the concerts live, and this marks the first time Apple has hosted an iTunes Festival event outside of London.
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