Leather MacBook Sleeves from Woolnut

I’m a sucker for nice leather, especially for my Apple devices. There’s a company called Woolnut making nice MacBook sleeves. I haven’t tested them yet, but Jeff Gamet and I have a couple of them on the way, and I’m looking forward to it. They make different sleeves for MacBook, MacBook Air, and MacBook Pro (including with Touch Bar), starting at €68 (US$78). Sleeves are made from full-grain, vegetable-tanned leather, and the interior of the sleeve is wool. They also make leather wallet cases for iPhone.

Amazon is Just Getting Started With Alexa/Echo

The Amazon Echo family of devices shouldn’t be underestimated. We talk about how it appears to be a device for casual questions, weather, music and shopping. But the underlying technology is going after something much bigger. Moreover, Amazon’s lead over Apple in AI and home automation may be unstoppable. John looks at two articles that provide insight into what Amazon is after in the long run.

Defy Apple and Add a Touchscreen to Your MacBook with AirBar

Apple recently doubled-down on its refusal to add a touchscreen to its MacBook line, but if you’re starting 2017 with a bit of Microsoft Surface envy, you’ll soon be able to turn your MacBook Air’s display into a touchscreen, regardless of what Jony Ive thinks. AirBar is a USB-powered sensor that attaches to the bottom of your screen and enables touch interactions right on the display thanks to the company’s “zForce AIR” light field technology. The company is launching support for the MacBook Air first with support for other models to follow. Interested users can sign up at the company’s website to be notified once pre-orders go live in March. There’s no word on pricing but AirBar already sells a version for Windows laptops for $69.