PCalc Uses ARKit for the Best App About Screen Ever

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“Fun” may not be the first adjective that springs to mind when talking about calculator apps, but it totally applies to PCalc. A new update for the app uses iOS 11’s ARKit feature to bring augmented reality into your number-filled world. Just tap the info button on the calculator keypad, choose Help, then tap About PCalc. Once you see the floating 42 badge tap anywhere on the screen to bring up the AR controls so you can throw marbles, dice, and bananas into your virtual world. There’s even a fire setting because who doesn’t want to throw flaming bananas? PCalc costs US$9.99 and is available for download at Apple’s App Store.

PCalc Uses ARKit for the Best App About Screen Ever

Craig Federighi's Face ID Q&A on Conan O'Brien

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Conan O’Brien has the unaired footage of Craig Federighi’s Face ID Q&A session with audience members at this week’s iPhone X launch event, and by “footage” we mean “opening sketch for the Conan Show.” The questions are absolutely fantastic and exactly what you’d expect from random audience members. It’s also a great example of just how mainstream Apple, the iPhone, and Apple’s media events have become. The video is just over a minute and a half long and worth checking out.

Here's that Burberry Coat Angela Ahrendts Wore at Apple's Media Event

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Angela Ahrendts long coat got a lot of attention during Apple’s iPhone media event on Tuesday. TMO reader Alan Adams and his wife recognized it from a recent trip to Paris, and sent me a link to it.  It’s called the Macramé Lace Trench Coat, and it’s priced at a mere US$2,895. Not surprisingly, it’s from Burberry, where Ms. Ahrendts used to be CEO. Today, she is Apple’s senior vice president in charge of retail.

Here’s that Burberry Coat Angela Ahrendts Wore at Apple’s Media Event

Check out this Tilt-Control Racing Game for iOS

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GRID Autosport is coming to iOS (and Android, if that’s your jam). This is racing game, and the iOS trailer looks amazing. It’s being developed for mobile by Feral Interactive. We don’t have a lot of details yet, but the company noted in the comments on YouTube that it will have a career mode, just like the original console version. GRID Autosport will be a tilt-and-touch game. What do you think?

Check out the Amazing Colors in Apple's 'iPhone X' Commercial

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Apple released a bunch of solid commercials Tuesday, but iPhone X is my favorite. It uses some gorgeous colors splashing around as a lure for the devices OLED screen. The colors grabbed my attention during the keynote when it was first shown. They reminded me a lot of the 70s’ kid’s toy, the Magic Window, but with a lot more colors. It’s compelling, bold, striking, and sexy. Interestingly, text at the end of the spot indicates that it hasn’t been approved by the FCC, and specifies that it can’t be sold until it is.

Watch Apple Watch Series 3 'Dear Apple' Commercial

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Apple published a new commercial called Dear Apple. it promotes Apple Watch Series 3 by looking at letters that have been written to Apple and CEO Tim Cook. There will probably be shorter versions aired on TV, but the full version below is two minutes and 38 seconds. The testimonials range from health uses, sports cases, diabetes, car crashes, and a Russian cyborg (for real). I think it’s a great video.

Apple Claims Apple Watch #1 Watch in the World

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Apple CEO Tim Cook said Tuesday that Apple Watch is not just the number one smartwatch on the planet, it’s now the number one watch. It would represent a huge accomplishment for Apple, and one that should scare the pants off the watch world. In the screenshot I included, Apple Watch is about to overcome Rolex to be the top brand in terms of sales.

Apple Claims Apple Watch #1 Watch in the World

Artist Uses iPhone ARKit to Visualize Sound in 3D Space

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Zach Lieberman is an artist who is exploring how to create art using iPhone ARKit. His latest creation? Recording audio in space. In the demo video, Zach makes sounds like “woosh, psh, ah, click.” After each sound, a white blob bursts into the air, and as Zach walks backward, each blob is linked to the other blobs like a audio timeline. When he walks forward again through the trail, you hear each sound playing in reverse. Zach, who helps run the School For Poetic Computation in New York City, built the demo using Simultaneous Localization And Mapping (SLAM). It uses the iPhone’s sensors and camera to create a low-res map of the room. The app records sound with the microphone, processes and visualizes it, and then maps each sound blob to a location within the room.

Quick test recording audio in space and playing back -- (video has audio !) #openframeworks

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BopPad Uses Smartcloth to Improve Drum Pad Response

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There’s a new drum pad out there from Keith McMillen Instruments (KMI) that uses smartcloth to make the device more accurate and responsive. At least that’s what the company claims, and they’re using smart fabric sensors from BeBop Sensors to do it. Funded on Kickstarter last year, BopPad is a, “location and pressure-sensitive drum controller with a wicked-fast playing surface.” I’ve yet to meet an electronic drum I love to play, but I’m looking forward to checking out BopPad. Just watch the video. The device is $199 through the KMI website.