What Will We Do When Siri Picks Our Pocket?

· · Particle Debris

Hal9000 eye

A major problem with Artificial Intelligence (AI) development is that a time might come when AI’s are able to learn and teach themselves faster than humans can manage them. Recently, President Obama suggested AI’s that aren’t properly constrained and regulated could be unleashed on unsuspecting citizens and severely disadvantage them. Figuring out when to step in will be the great 21st century challenge for governments.

Samsung's Note 7 Debacle Keeps Getting More Expensive

· · Analysis

Samsung Galaxy Note 7 in burning pile of money

What’s the cost of designing and selling an smartphone that catches on fire? If you’re Samsung, it’s US$5.3 billion. The electronics maker is now estimating its losses for dealing with the Galaxy Note 7 debacle will climb well over its earlier projections and could go higher than its latest expectation.

macOS Sierra: Resetting Your System Sound Effects Output

· · Quick Tip

Every macOS/OS X update has its own quirks, and those quirks can be amplified by whatever peculiarities existed on the Mac being upgraded. For instance, when I upgraded to Sierra, that setting got changed so that it was independent from my System Output. Fortunately, putting it back is easy.

Google Offers Ballot Information Tailored to You

· · Cool Stuff Found

Google is adding U.S. ballot information to search results in the run up to the presidential election in November. It starts with the ability to search for “who’s on my ballot” in the main Google search engine. Users who do so will be asked to provide the street address where they’ll be voting (i.e. it will be added to Google’s profile on you if that was somehow missing). Google Maps users will be prompted to use their Home address. You’ll then be given all the candidates on your ballot, as well as quick access to information on how to vote in your state and where to vote in your district. In my opinion Google is performing a huge service to the country with this feature. Watch the video for more information.

KlikR Universal Remote Control: $19.99

· · TMO Deals

KlickR Universal Remote Control

Check out KlikR, a device that serves as a go-between between for your iPhone and any device with an infrared receiver. Put it onto or next to the receiver and you’ll be able to control it from the companion app on your iPhone or Android device. You can also use voice controls, designate rooms and multiple devices (if you have multiple KlikRs), and more. It’s the kind of device that helps bridge legacy electronics with the Internet of Things, and we have a deal on KlikR for $19.99.

macOS Sierra: Method 2 For Watching Videos Picture-in-Picture

· · How-To

Sierra Contextual Menu on YouTube Video

macOS Sierra supports picture-in-picture (PiP). Melissa Holt showed us how to access PiP using on-screen controls, but she’s some kind of wizard and the rest of TMO’s staff don’t have those controls. Fortunately, Dave Hamilton found a second method for watching in PiP mode. It’s a touch—curious?—on how to get there, but Bryan Chaffin will walk you through it.

Facebook Video Streaming gets Apple TV Support

· · Cool Stuff Found

Facebook just made it easier to watch videos wherever you want by adding support for streaming to Apple TV. The change means you can use AirPlay to watch Facebook videos on your television while continuing to scroll through posts in the Facebook iOS app, or on the Facebook website. Video comments will show up on your TV, too, which means you can keep on top of what everyone is thinks during the next Presidential debate—assuming you’re into streaming that from Facebook. You’ll need to download the latest Facebook app update on your iPhone or iPad to stream videos to your Apple TV.

Facebook Video Streaming gets Apple TV Support

TMO Daily Observations 2016-10-13: Social Networks and Police Surveillance

· · The Mac Observer's Daily Observations Podcast

TMO Daily Observations Podcast Logo

Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and other social networks have been giving Geofeedia access to user’s posts that’s being used for police surveillance. Dave Hamilton and Bryan Chaffin join Jeff Gamet to look at what Geofeedia was collecting, how it was being used by law enforcement, and the ethical issues social networks face when giving companies our publicly available data.

New Rogue One: A Star Wars Story Drops Out of Hyperspace

· · Cool Stuff Found

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story hits theaters on December 16th, but we don’t have to wait until then to see a little more of what’s in store. Disney released a new trailer for the movie on Thursday that reveals a little of Jyn Erso’s background and taunts us a glimpse of epic space battles with X-wings and TIE fighters. We also get another Darth Vader tease, and there’s plenty more to get excited about, too. Based on the trailers we’ve seen so far, Rogue One is shaping up to be an awesome prequel to the original Star Wars movie.

Apple May Want Sonder's E Ink Keyboard for MacBook Pro

· · News

Sonder E Ink keyboard in MacBook Pro

Apple’s plans for adaptive keyboard elements may go beyond replacing the function keys on the MacBook Pro with a touch sensitive OLED strip. A new report claims Apple wants Sonder’s E Ink-based keyboard system for future MacBook Pro models, and may be negotiating to buy Sonder the company.

Braven 705 Bluetooth Speaker: $49.99

· · TMO Deals

Braven 705 Bluetooth Speaker

Check out the Braven 705 Bluetooth Speaker. It features a shock-absorbent thermoplastic exterior and IPX5 water resistance. it also has a built-in mic and speakerphone for taking and making calls. Sound comes from two drivers, and it has a 12-hour battery life. You can get it through our deal for $49.99.

Last Day for Cloop XL Magnetic Cable Keeper 2.0 on Kickstarter

· · Cool Stuff Found

Cloop Magnetic Cable Organizer

After I posted the SHAPES Kickstarter on Wednesday, Father Gabriel Mosher tweeted me another cool cable organizer called Cloop XL. This is a different approach for cable management in that it’s a rubber strap with neodymium magnets that snap together and stay there. This particular Kickstarter is for a new, larger version called Cloop XL. It’s 115mm (4.6-inches) long, and can hold sturdier cables. This project has already raised $66,000, well over its $10,000 goal. Funding options that get you three or more Cloops, including a Cloop XP, start at $11 as of this writing, but you only have today to participate. There’s a ton of information there, too.

Tame Your Cables with Spheres and Pyramids on Kickstarter

· · Cool Stuff Found

SHAPES Cable Organizer

Check out SHAPES on Kickstarter. I’ve seen a lot of cable organizers and tamers and whatnot cross my desk. Most of them are quite clever and useful, but they tend to rely on me putting the end of a cable onto a magnetic base when I’m done with it. There’s a Kickstarter project called SHAPES that takes a different approach. Rather than being a catch-all for multiple cables, SHAPES is more of a holder for one cable, as shown in the video below. Each sphere or pyramid (I prefer the spheres, FWIW) holds one cable in place while allowing it to slide about when you’re using it. The company is trying to raise $20,000 with 28 days to go.

Making Weather, a Levitating Speaker that Looks like a Cloud

· · Cool Stuff Found

Making Weather Levitating Cloud Speaker

Check out this remarkable project Richard Clarkson is working on. It’s called Making Weather, and builds on Smart Cloud, a combination lamp and Bluetooth speaker designed to look like a cloud. As noted by The Verge, Mr. Clarkson is working with Crealev to turn this idea into an actual levitating cloud. Crealev has the levitation technology, which uses magnets to achieve the levitation effect. This isn’t a shipping product (yet), but the original Smart Cloud is ($3,360). But the demo video for Making Weather is intensely cool, and I wanted to share it. You can find more images and information on at Crealev’s site.