Update to 'Phone Buddy' Adds Play Sound on Apple Watch Feature

Phone Buddy is an app that monitors the Bluetooth connection between your iPhone and Apple Watch and alerts you when needed. Alerts can be configured to display when your iPhone connection is lost, when you leave your Apple Watch behind, or when devices move apart with Distance Going Away Alerts. With Phone Buddy, if you step away from your iPhone, you get a notification on your Apple Watch. With Phone Buddy 7.2 you can now trigger a sound to play on your Apple Watch from your iPhone with the Play Sound on Apple Watch feature. This update also includes a new error detection heuristic that aims to reduce errors and failures. As always, core stability updates are also included with this update.

Apple Arcade: Mini Motorways Free Challenge City Update Arrives

Mini Motorways, the minimalist strategy simulation about designing growing cities’ road maps from developer Dinosaur Polo Club, cuts the ribbon on the Challenge City Update, expanding each metropolis with new maps, missions, leaderboards, accessibility options, and more, available now for free download on Steam via Windows PC and macOS as well as Apple Arcade. The Nintendo Switch version planned for next year will include this new content at launch.

'Total War: ROME REMASTERED' Releases Patch 2.0.4 for Gamers

Feral Interactive announced that patch 2.0.4 for Total War: ROME REMASTERED is now available on Steam for Windows, macOS and Linux. Patch 2.0.4 brings greatly expanded modding abilities to ROME REMASTERED, including the removal of limits to the number of possible cultures, building types and factions. In addition to these modding changes there are a number of interface improvements, tweaks to AI, sound and more. The full patch notes are available at the link below.

NordPass Password Manager Adds Biometric Authentication for Mac

NordPass is introducing biometric authentication to Windows and macOS applications. This new feature, which previously was available on mobile devices only, will add flexibility and convenience to the login process. Instead of typing in their master password, users will be able to use their fingerprint or face ID to sign in. According to a report published by NordPass, the most common password is 123456. and relying more on biometrics would help eliminate such weak passwords. But many cybersecurity professionals note that biometric authentication on its own is not enough. The best way to ensure maximum security for your accounts is to use it along with multi-factor authentication (MFA).

Apple TV+ Suggests Christmas Viewing

In a new Christmas trailer, Apple TV+ suggests shows and films that it recommends for viewers over the festive period. The content featured includes Swansong, The Morning ShowTed Lasso, and, of course, A Charlie Brown Christmas. All this content is available to subscribers now or will be becoming available shortly.

Sale: AdGuard's Family Plan is Now Just $29, Down From $129

Plans for AdGuard adblocker are now on sale through StackSocial, and as of this writing the deal ends in seven days. This is the adblocker I’ve been using for a few years and one that I personally recommend. Personal Plan – This is a lifetime license that is only available to new users. The maximum number of devices you can activate the service on is three, including desktop and mobile. US$19.99 US$59 Family Plan – This is a lifetime license that is only available to new users. The maximum number of devices you can activate the service on is nine, including desktop and mobile. US$29.99 US$129. System requirements: iOS 10.0 or later, OS X 10.10 Yosemite (64 bit) or later. Unredeemed licenses can be returned for store credit within 30 days of purchase. Once your license is redeemed, all sales are final.

'Libreddit' is a New Frontend Client for Reddit Designed for Privacy

Libreddit is a new frontend for Reddit, written in Rust, that aims to preserve privacy. The developer shared the service on r/Privacy. “Reddit tracks a lot of data but Libreddit logs nothing and uses no JavaScript by default so client-side monitoring isn’t possible. There are 35 community-hosted instances that can be used to access Libreddit; one can spread their traffic across multiple for even more privacy. 7 of our instances are .onion hidden services so you can browse Libreddit using Tor.” Official Instance: https://libreddit.spike.codes.  If this gets too slow due to traffic, use another instance.

Caviar Melts Down Tesla Model 3 to Make iPhone 13 Pro

Caviar, a Russian luxury boutique, is at it again. Their latest product, after the Tyrannosaurus rex iPhone, involves melting down a Tesla Model 3. The company has taken one of the electric cars, melted it down, and used the materials to craft a new iPhone 13 Pro design, the iPhone 13 Tesla Electro. The body is manufactured from titanium with black PVD coating, and the central aluminum insert comes from the Tesla Model 3. An artistic collage, etched into the aluminum insert, features a portrait of Elon Musk, the outline of an electric car, and the Tesla Motors logo. This run is limited to 99 pieces, and you can choose either an iPhone 13 Pro or an iPhone 13 Pro Max with any memory configuration. It’ll set you back $6,760. If you’d prefer to spend a bit less, you could also get an Elon Musk bust made from the same materials, for $3,220.

'NeoFinder' Digital Asset Manager for Mac Updated to 8.0 Release

After almost two years of development, NeoFinder for Mac 8.0 has finally been completed today and is now available for download. It offers a fresh user interface with new icons, and added color options. The Metadata Editor adds the Dublin Core XMP Contact fields, autocompletion with recently used field values, and the ability to copy or move metadata between fields. The updated Map shows satellite imagery, multiple geotags at once, and edit geotags by just moving them. Navigation of large catalogs is faster by having the folders of catalogs visible and selectable in the LIBRARY already. Machine learning tools and AI are used for OCR, AutoTags, and face detection, and a lot more tightly integrated into NeoFinder. The new version is a paid upgrade for NeoFinder or CDFinder customers who purchased their license before October 2020. Licenses purchased after October 1, 2020 will get this upgrade for free.

Loopring's New Smart Wallet Can Help Recover Stolen or Lost Crypto

Loopring Wallet is a first-ever Ethereum smart contract wallet with zkRollup-based transfers. Gas-free, secure, and simple. It allows you to avoid gas fees and network congestion. It integrates Loopring’s zkRollup, a layer-2 scaling protocol to increase speeds and lower fees by 1000x relative to Ethereum mainnet. Completely self-custodial; only you control your assets. Say goodbye to seed phrases and paper backups, say hello to social recovery. Choose a combination of friends, your other wallets (hardware or software), or institutions as guardians of your wallet. If you ever lose access to your mobile, they help you recover your assets. As long as more than half of your guardians are trustworthy, your assets are secure.

Build a DIY Raspberry Pi Magic Mirror

Forget about a magic mirror that tells you what you want to hear. This DIY Raspberry Pi magic mirror can update you on the news and weather while you prepare for your day. All3DP‘s Jackson O’Connell has just published an excellent walkthrough on building your own smart, or magic, mirror using Raspberry Pi, common building materials, and a code repository that’s just waiting for you to make the most of it. It’s hands-down one of the coolest and most useful Raspberry Pi DIY projects I’ve come across.

Yubico and Keyport Release Pivot 2.0 Organizer for Keys

Yubico and Keyport partnered on the new Yubico Keyport Pivot 2.0 organizer, a durable and functional everyday-carry solution for organizing and protecting your YubiKeys, house keys, and all keys alike. It holds up to 8 keys (or more with an extension kit) and offers a low-profile lanyard attachment. It’s easy to assemble and designed to keep everything set to the ideal tightness. Keyport developed several add-on modules that integrate with the Pivot: OmniFob Smart Remote, WeeLink charger cable, a NEBA Knife and a 12-lumen flashlight.

Enjoy an Ice Cream Flavor-Inspired iPhone Case

One lifestyle label has decided to take inspiration from popular ice cream flavors for its latest iPhone cases. Urban Sophistication is a clothing and accessory boutique. It “reinterprets everyday objects to offer a unique experience of the ordinary altogether creating a portrait of us”. The boutique’s latest product announcement consists of five new Puffer cases. Different ice cream flavors inspire each of the cases in the new “Flavors” drop. You can choose from Bubblegum, Frozen Sun, Green Tea, Peach Sorbet and Cotton Candy. Urban Sophistication first thought up the Puffer case after photoshopping a picture of a puffer jacket onto an iPhone case. The idea proved so popular that Urban Sophistication designed a new line of cases incorporating the puffiness of the jacket. Dua Lipa, Rosalia, Madelaine Petsch and J Balvin have helped popularize the Puffer cases. These cases fit all models of iPhone 11, iPhone 12, and iPhone 13.

New App 'Macro by Camera+' Aims to Compete With iPhone 13 Pro

LateNiteSoft is well known for apps such as Camera+, and on Thursday revealed its latest app called Macro by Camera+. The goal of Macro by Camera+ is to take the fuss out of taking amazing-looking close-up photos. The app intelligently chooses the best lens for your shot, and gives you just the right tools to make your subject shine. And there’s no hardware envy required: Macro is compatible with any iPhone that can run iOS 15. The controls in Macro by Camera+ are laser focused and powerfully aimed at getting the perfect up-close image in crystal clear focus. It includes manually controlled focus and EV so you can precisely control the focus and brightness of your photo.

Amazon Prime Video Now Available in the Mac App Store

Starting today, Prime Video is rolling out a native macOS app allowing customers to stream and download Prime Video content on Macs for offline viewing in the app. This includes licensed titles and Amazon Originals such as, The Tomorrow War, Coming 2 America, The Boys, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel and The Wheel of Time (premiering Nov 19). Prime Video customers worldwide with Big Sur 11.4 and above can download the app for free on the Mac App Store. The Prime Video macOS app streaming experience will also include: Picture-in-Picture (allows viewers to play video content in a resizable floating window that isn’t blocked by other windows), Search/browse functionality, In-app transactions (TVOD purchases/rentals), Amazon’s growing line-up of live sports globally, including Thursday Night Football and the English Premier League (where available).

Deal: Get an Apple TV 4K For US$119

B&H Photo has a deal on a previous generation 32GB Apple TV 4K (spotted by MacRumors). It is offering the device for US$119. That’s US$59, or 33 percent, off the usual US$179 RRP. The deal is time-limited, with under 11 hours to go at the time of this writing, so get in there quick if you want one at this price.

Topaz Labs Updates 'Video Enhance AI' With Apple M1 Support

Video Enhance AI is now compatible with Apple’s M1 chips in its latest update, version 2.6. Other features: New Chronos Fast AI model – Built for high-resolution video clips with fast motion, delivering 2-3x faster performance than the current Chronos v2 AI model. New Proteus, Artemis, and Dione AI models – Optimized to be about 30% faster on Windows computers while providing improved quality compared to previous models. Refinements to these AI models also increase video quality compared to previous versions. Download for macOS.

'Scanner Pro' Update Brings AI-Powered Smart Categories for Organization

Now Scanner Pro automatically sorts & organizes your scans by categories. It’s tiring and time-consuming to manually organize the hundreds of scanned documents in Scanner Pro into folders and carefully name them so they’re easier to find. Thanks to Smart Categories, you’ll need less time to find the scan you’re looking for, without the need to manually organize all your files. Just search through bills, invoices, magazines, and so on.

10 Arduino IoT Projects for Beginners

Got an itch to start tinkering with Arduino, but want it to be something useful? As I explained on Apple Context Machine, Arduino is a microcontroller that lets you do just about any task you can find parts and write code for. A great way to get started and have it mean something is with a project that helps your daily life. One way to achieve both is with an Internet of Things (IoT) project. There are hundreds of tutorials on building with Arduino. Some are useful, some are just cute and/or fun. This MakeUseOf article highlights 10 Arduino IoT projects perfect for beginners. From monitoring your plants’ health to reminding you when it’s time to take your medicine (and even dispensing a glass of water to wash the pills down), these Arduino IoT projects will get you on the right path. There’s even a tutorial on building your own automated pet feeder.

Meet 'Actions' a New App to Add More Actions to Shortcuts

Actions is a new app for Shortcuts, and it adds actions that Apple doesn’t provide. So far there are 25 actions with more planned in the future. There are actions such as Generate UUID, Get File Path, Trim Whitespace, Remove Emoji, Random Date & Time, and more. I’m most excited about the Get File Path action. It should be useful in a particular shortcut I have that creates a “changelog” of new files I need to remember to back up to my SSD.

Update for Menu Bar Organizer 'Bartender' Supports MacBook Pro Notch

Bartender 4.1.12 has been released as a test build and it adds support for the notch on the 2021 MacBook Pro. “If you are using a MacBook Pro Notch, I recommend you use the Bartender Bar, as this removes the limit of the notch on the number of menu bar items you can have, you could also use Small menu bar item spacing to gain more room. You can update to the latest Test Build by clicking the button below, or from Bartender Prefercnes > Advanced, Check to Update your Test Builds then click the Check for Updates button.”

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