If you’ve ever wanted to roam the corridors on Captain Kirk’s Enterprise from the original Star Trek series, now is your chance. Or, more accurately, now you can explore a faithful reproduction of the set where the classic Trek was filmed. James Cawley spent years recreating the set from original Desilu (now Paramount) plans for his high quality fan series Star Trek: Phase II, and now he’s teamed up with CBS so everyone can see the bridge, sick bay, engineering room, and more just as the actors did in 1966. You’ll have to make a trip to Ticonderoga, New York, and tours end on October 31. Tickets run about $25, and remember the Prime Directive: treat the set with love.
One of my favorite actresses, Amy Adams, plays a linguist, charged with understanding the alien visitor’s language. It seems the arrival of very smart science fiction films like Ex Machina, Interstellar and The Martian are inspiring a new breed. This looks to be one of them. Coming November 11th.
Automatic, the device that connects to your car’s ODB port to track your driving, just went pro. The new Automatic Pro model uses a 3G wireless data connection instead of Bluetooth to log data, which means you can track your car’s activity and status without relying on your iPhone’s Bluetooth signal. Even better, you don’t pay anything extra for 3G—it’s included for free. Automatic Pro comes with a new app and better IFTTT support. You can pick up Automatic Pro for US$129.95.
Google released Duo on Tuesday, “a simple 1-to-1 video calling app” for iOS and Android. Google set it up to operate around your existing phone number. Unlike Apple’s FaceTime, Google Duo doesn’t care if you’re on iOS or Android. It also has an interesting feature called Knock Knock that allows the callee to see the caller’s live video feed before you answer. The video below demonstrates Knock Knock. Google Duo is “free,” and is available at the App Store and Google Play. [Update: as noted by @grempe on Twitter, Google Duo calls are encrypted end-to-end, an important privacy element to protect users from prying eyes far and wide. – Bryan]
The Mac on Jerry’s desk in the iconic sitcom Seinfeld was little more than a set dressing, which meant viewers were on their own to imagine what was on that computer—until now. The clever crew at extremelygoodshit.com made a virtual version of Jerry’s Mac you can explore in your favorite Web browser, complete with important documents, Jerry’s Web history (toothbrush STDs, anyone?), and more. If you check out Jerry’s Mac at work be sure to use your headphones because a Seinfeld-ish theme plays when the page first loads.
Apple CEO Tim Cook had to step into some enormous shoes taking over from Steve Jobs. Much has been written and said on the topic, but Tim Cook hasn’t often spoken publicly about it himself. In his new interview with The Washington Post, Mr. Cook did talk about Steve Jobs, and the newspaper posted a video snippet on the topic. In it, Mr. Cook talks about Steve Jobs being a heat shield for Apple, and how he thought the media would lose interest in Apple after Mr. Jobs passed. If you let the video below play through, you’ll get a second snippet from the interview. If you let it keep playing, you’ll get videos unrelated to Tim Cook’s interview.
Google is working on a new operating system called Fuchsia. AndroidPolice found the project on Gtihub with the description “Pink + Purple == Fuchsia (a new Operating System).” The OS is being built on the Magenta kernel, the first Google operating system not based on Linux. Magenta is derived from LittleKernel, a project aimed at Internet of Things and embedded OS devices. But, AndroidPolice found documentation that suggests it could be scaled up for smartphones and even desktop computers. That could make it an eventual replacement for Android and Chrome OS. It will definitely be interesting to see what Google does with Fuchsia.
Check out the “The Dual Band System” from Sinn (via The Next Web), and it’s a way of having your mechanical watch cake while eating like a poser, too. With this $210 strap ($120 when purchased with a Sinn watch), you can wear your mechanical watch on top of your wrist. But hidden underneath your wrist is your Apple Watch, all on the down low. Listen, I love a mechanical watch as much as the next horological wingnut. And I’ll be honest, I am often torn on whether to wear my Zenith timepiece or my Apple Watch. But this, dear folks, is not the solution. Be that as it may, I wanted to share. 😂
Feral Interactive announced Friday it was bringing ROME: Total War to the iPad! This classic game mixes turn-based play and real-time strategy battles in a way that kept me glued to my Mac for ages. Your cities matter, and commanders count. They have different strengths and weaknesses, and not only affect your economy, they can make or break a battle. Even the way you deploy your troops matters. It will be released this fall and pricing hadn’t been announced. Two of the games expansions have been pre-announced for iPad, too: ROME: Total War – Barbarian Invasion and ROME: Total War – Alexander. Check out the trailer.
iOS 10’s Messages app lets you add stickers to your text chats, just like you can do in conversations in social media services such as Facebook. You won’t see any stickers you can use at first because there aren’t any installed by default. Follow along with this TMO Video Tip to learn how to install stickers and use them in your Messages chats.
The excitement over Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is building up to a frenzy as its December 16th premiere draws ever closer like a tractor beam pulling us into the Death Star’s landing bay. The excitement hyperdrive kicked in now that the second trailer for the movie is out and OMG it has Darth Vader! There’s also X-wings TIE Fighters, Star Destroyers, and Storm Troopers—but there’s Darth Vader! Crank up your speakers, sit back, and soak up the awesomeness that is the second Rogue One trailer.
Youtuber colinfurze has a new crazy contraption, a 360-degree swing. And it’s just way too cool. Oh, and it’s in his back yard and lacks even a semblance of safety. I love people who can make things and who aren’t afraid to shoot for awesome. This swing is certainly awesome. Check out the bit at 1:55 when he talks about the pallets and how it used to be taller. At 2:02 there’s a couple of seconds of one of the arms bending while he was testing. Crazy. Watch and admire!
I’ve been thinking about Rick Tetzeli’s interview transcript with Eddy Cue and Craig Federighi for two days, and I just can’t decide what exactly to write about it. There’s a detailed explanation on Maps, its development, its import. There’s stuff about the differences between Steve Jobs and Tim Cook (Steve yelled, Tim is cerebral). There’s comments on Apple and innovation, and another section on customers holding Apple to a higher bar. And a lot more. It’s all good, and I think it’s a must-read for anyone interested in Apple.
Explaining the complexities and nuances of controlling your home’s smart lights, smart switches, and wireless music system can be a little frustrating for you and intimidating for your less tech-savvy friends and family. Logitech is hoping to take away that complexity with its new Pop programmable button. You set up a Pop to control connected devices such as Hue lights, WeMo and Lutron switches, Sonos music players, and more. It’s pretty versatile, too, so you can do things like set a single press to turn on the lights and close the blinds, or a double-press to dim the lights and get the tunes playing through your Sonos. You can pre-order a starter pack with two switches and network bridge for US$99.99, and it will ship in a few weeks.
Netflix launched its own internet speed test website a few months ago, and now the streaming entertainment company has turned the Fast site into an iPhone and iPad app. Just like the website, the Fast app is a one trick pony: launch it, and you’ll see how fast your internet connection is. Fast shows just your download speed, which is what most people care about anyhow, and there’s a button to check your connection speed again. Netflix Fast is a free download at Apple’s App Store.
Check out Hula Wrap on Kickstarter. It’s a leather wrap for your MacBook charger that lets you wrap both cables, even the long power cord. It looks good, all rugged and leathery, but more importantly, it looks like it works. I hate taking my charger with me on my 2011 MacBook Air because the cables are such a pain, even though the battery has degraded over the years. That’s why this project immediately resonated with me. The company behind Hula Wrap is half way through its modest funding goal of $9,800, with 21 days to go. Funding options that will net you a Hula Wrap are currently available at $25. You can get two of them for $40. The video below is short, to the point, and well-produced, and it shows Hula Wrap in action.
Check out the Totally Accurate Battle Simulator, or TABS. This game is just starting alpha development, but it’s super exciting. At least to a nerd like me. You set up units (the red and blue rag dolls in the video), arm them with weapons, and let TABS show you what would happen. Is it a game? Maybe? I don’t know, I just see the opportunity to test out combat scenarios. Being developed by Landfall, the game has been greenlit by Steam, according to The Next Web. Landfall is accepting signups for the alpha for Mac, Windows, Linux, Xbox, and PS4, though the company is specific about not promising which platforms will be supported on release. If it does hit Steam, there’s a good chance it will have Mac support. In the meanwhile, I signed up for the alpha and I’m hoping to be picked, because it looks awesome.
Sitting squarely in the finally column, Google Docs, Google Sheets and Google Slides received updates today enabling Split Screen view for capable iPads running iOS 9 (and later). It works exactly as you would have expected it to work in the fall when it should have originally been released. Go download them from the App Store.
Niantic’s Pokémon GO 1.3.0 update gets us a step closer to being able to hunt for Pokémon again by replacing the horribly broken Nearby feature with Sightings. The new feature doesn’t do much to help you track down Pokémon, but at least it lets you know there something close by. The update also adds the ability to change your trainer name once, fixes the battery saver mode bug, fixes bonus award bugs, and more. Niantic is A/B testing versions of the Nearby feature, so you may get some variations in what you see. Pokémon GO is a free download for the iPhone.
Messages in iOS 10 is loaded with new features, like the ability to draw directly in your conversations. You’ll need a finger or stylus, plus a little inspiration. You also need to know how to find the drawing mode in Messages. Watch TMO’s Quick Tip video to learn how.