Recent Articles By Bryan Chaffin [RSS]

FBI Looks for Touch ID Workaround by 3D Printing Fingers

· · The Back Page

A 3D printer printing a hand

The FBI has a new trick up its sleeve for getting into locked iPhones. The agency hired Anil Jain, a professor at Michigan State University, to 3D print the fingers of a murder victim. The idea is to use the 3D prints to unlock the device. Should it work, it will open up new avenues for law enforcement and pose new threats to everyone, everywhere.

Apple Has Olympic Limited Edition Apple Watch Bands in Brazil, But We Found Alternatives

· · News

Apple Watch Band Olympics 2016 Sampler

Apple is offering limited edition Apple Watch bands for the Olympics, but you can only get them at the Apple Store VillageMall in Barra da Tijuca. That’s in Brazil. GQ reported that Apple has Apple Watch bands commemorating 14 “major competitor” countries. But if you can’t go to Brazil, we did some digging and found a couple of alternatives at Amazon and AliExpress.

Apple to Announce Earnings July 26th

· · News

$AAPL Logo

Apple announced Friday that it will hold its quarterly call with analysts on Tuesday, July 26th. Investors will be keenly watching results and guidance looking for signs in renewed growth for Apple. In the March quarter, Apple reported year-over-year declines in revenue and iPhone sales.

Urge Basics 4-Port USB-C Car Charger: $19.99

· · TMO Linked Teasers

Urge Basics 4-Port USB-C Car Charger

If you share your car with other people, you’ll want to check out today’s deal for the Urge Basics 4-Port USB-C Car Charger. It plugs into your car’s AC outlet (or cigarette lighter), and features two 2.4A USB ports, one 3A USB port, and one USB-C port. You can get it through us for $19.99.

Vaja Offers 20% Off Sitewide on iPhone, iPad, MacBook Cases

· · Cool Stuff Found

Vaja is offering a 20% sitewide discount on its leather cases for iPhones, iPads, and even a few Android devices. I don’t often mention things like sales, but I am a huge fan of Vaja cases. My first Vaja case was for the last Motorola RAZR I owned before I got the first-gen iPhone. I then got a Vaja case for that iPhone and for the iPhone 3GS I replaced it with. They’re very well made, high quality, and gorgeous, but you pay for what you get. That’s code for “they ain’t cheap,” making a 20% discount a possible buying opportunity for me. To get the discount, use coupon code “20off” at checkout. The item pictured with this article is the iPad Pro 9.7″ Detachable Libretto Leather Case, which normally starts at $199.

Vaja Offers 20% Off Sitewide on iPhone, iPad, MacBook Cases

ACM 369: BlackBerry Doofus, Black Box Regulation, Twitter Harrassment

· · Apple Context Machine Podcast

The Apple Context Machine

BlackBerry CEO John Chen had some seemingly irrational things to say about Apple’s stance on encryption, and Bryan and Jeff break it down. They also take a deeper look into black boxes and self-driving cars with a focus on regulating these devices and surveillance worries. Just to keep things light, they dive into Twitter harassment and social media censorship.

Screens 3 for Mac VNC: $12.99

· · TMO Linked Teasers

Screens 3 for Mac

Check out Screens 3, a virtual network client (VNC) that allows you to login to and control a Mac, Windows or Linux box from your Mac. There’s some of that built into OS X, but Screens 3 adds support for Windows and Linux devices. It also allows you to set up an action that triggers each time you disconnect (for instance, “Log Out Your User,” etc.). There are other features you might find useful, too, so check out the deal listing for more info. You can get Screens 3 for Mac through our deal for $12.99.

Slow Motion Laughing Girl Video 'Shot on iPhone'

· · Cool Stuff Found

Apple posted two new spots in its “Shot on iPhone” series on YouTube. The one below, is titled Shot on iPhone by Marc Z. It should have been called something like Laughing Girl, or Joie de Vie. It’s just happy. And fun. And it’s yet another great spot in this wonderful series that shows off iPhone’s abilities. Apple also released Shot on iPhone by Robert S., a video of a gondola ride off a mountain.

Voilà! Apple Pay Launches in France

· · Cool Stuff Found

Apple Pay officially launched in France Tuesday. The initial rollout covers MasterCard and Visa users with Banque Populaire, Carrefour Banque, Ticket Restaurant, and Caisse d’Epargne. Orange and Boon banks are coming soon. Apple announced the French Apple Pay rollout during June’s World Wide Developer Conference—ironically, our own Dave Hamilton tried to use it in France without success just last week during his European vacation. Le moment, as they (don’t actually) say, est tout.

Voilà! Apple Pay Launches in France

MacVoices Interviews Bryan Chaffin, Jeff Gamet, and Macstock Speakers

· · Cool Stuff Found

MacStock 2016 took place over the weekend, and TMO friend Chuck Joiner has already edited a 57 minute video of interviews with many of the podcasters and writers in attendance. That includes Ken Ray, Victor Cajiao, Bryan Chaffin (meeeeeeee!), Tim Robertson, Julie Kuehl, Wally Cherwinski, Don McAllister, Adam Christianson, Barry Fulk, Mike T. Rose, and several more folks. If you pay attention, you’ll even see our own Jeff Gamet molest Mr. Joiner. As one does.

MacVoices Interviews Bryan Chaffin, Jeff Gamet, and Macstock Speakers

TigerVPN Lite 3-Year Subscription: $19

· · TMO Linked Teasers

TigerVPN Lite on MacBook and Portable Devices

We have a deal for you today on a three year subscription TigerVPN Lite. The “Lite” part means you get access to 15 nodes, a subset of the full service, which offers 62 nodes. But that also means you get three years on the cheap, just $19. It works on Mac, iOS, Android, and Windows. Check out the details on deal listing.

German Legislation Would Require 'Black Box' Tech for Self-Driving Cars

· · Cool Stuff Found

Germany is considering an interesting approach in the march towards regulating self-driving, or autonomous, vehicles. Reuters reported Europe’s largest economy is working on legislation that would require self-driving cars to include “black box” tech.  That system would record when the system was active and when the driver was in control. It would also record when the system requested the driver take over. Black box comes from the airline industry, where effectively-indestructible devices record flight data in the event of a crash. Those devices cost about $100,000 and have to survive substantially greater trauma than a car would ever endure. With that in mind, devices designed for cars would share little more than a name with their flying cousins. This is one regulatory approach that could be copied far and wide.

German Legislation Would Require ‘Black Box’ Tech for Self-Driving Cars

Within App Offers Live Simulcast of 'Mr. Robot VR Experience'

· · Cool Stuff Found

Remember the Vrse app? We covered it when it launched with a very cool VR performance from U2 and other musicians around the world. The app has been renamed to Within (at, and the company announced a live simulcast premier of the “Mr. Robot VR Experience” on July 21st. It’s been known for a while that showrunner Sam Esmail was shooting a VR scene for Mr. Robot, and this experience will build off that. There’s not a lot of info about it out there, with a brief mention in Within’s patch notes the only place I could find it. Season 2 kicked off on July 13th—I love this show and am super interested in seeing what it does with virtual reality.

Within App Offers Live Simulcast of ‘Mr. Robot VR Experience’

Swift and iOS Beginner eBook Bundle: $59.99

· · TMO Deals

Swift Apprentice and iOS Apprentice Ebook Bundle

We have a deal for you today on a two-ebook bundle for people who want to learn how to make apps for iOS. The first is called Swift Apprentice, and it’s designed to teach you how to get started with playgrounds and be able to practice while you learn core Swift 2 language concepts. The second, iOS Apprentice, is a ground up tutorials on how to build iOS apps that walks you through building four apps. You’ll also work with Xcode, Interface Builder, Swift 2, and more. You can get both ebooks for $59.99 through our deal.

3 Key Takeaways about Apple TV from Eddy Cue Interview

· · Columns & Opinions

Future Apple TV

In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter (THR), Apple senior vice president Eddy Cue added some color to Apple’s television aspirations. Key takeaways from the interview include Apple not planning to buy a studio (for now, at least); Apple having modest ambitions with original content; and Apple’s belief that voice is the killer feature for navigating television content.

Magnetic Bluetooth 4.1 Wireless Sport Headphones: $24.99

· · TMO Deals

Magnetic Wireless Headphones

We have a deal for you today on a pair of magnetic wireless sports headphones.These are Bluetooth headphones with magnets on the back of each ear piece so that they stick to each other. That means fewer tangles and fewer opportunities to get lost. The price through our deal is $24.99, some 37% off retail. Check out the details in the deal listing

Scrivener Coming to iOS July 20th

· · Cool Stuff Found

ZOMGZOMGZOMG!!! I am all a tither! Literature & Latte announced Wednesday that Scrivener is coming to iOS on July 20th! Scrivener is the best writing environment I’ve found, but heretofore it’s worked only on Mac and Windows. I’m not personally interested in writing on my iPad, but I am mega-interested in editing on my iPad. In fact, I do my serious read-throughs when editing fiction in iBooks. That’s great, but being able to get into that reading mode with Scrivener directly in hand is going to be a big deal for me. There’s no link yet, but L&L said it will be released July 20th at $19.99.