Hands On / First Looks
Yosemite represents the most drastic Mac OS interface shift since the original OS X Aqua interface with its pinstripes and lickable buttons. I guess it’s appropriate that this version be opened up for beta testing just like its predecessor. Here are my impressions from my first day using the new OS X.
You’d think that having a user-base of 85,000,000 players would keep the folks at Wargaming.net happy, but it doesn’t. That’s just PC gamers, and there’s another world out there in the form of iOS gamers. They know this in Finland, Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Iceland, where World of Tanks Blitz had its soft launch six weeks ago. And on June 26th, American iOS gamers will be getting their draft notices as well.
While there are a number of new features and enhancements to Adobe Illustrator v17.1, there are several that stand out for my work-flow. When it comes to the one for I’ve been waiting for the longest, making the choice was about as easy as anything I’ve ever encountered: rounded corners.
This year’s Hong Kong Electronics Fair marks the first time there’s been an i-World section, and it’s there that I’ve been spending most of my time, talking with vendors such as Raymond Ho, marketing manager for TiPX. He had myriad cases on display for iPhone, iPad, and other mobile brands, some of which were amongst the most unique I’ve ever seen.
The UNBIAT Lightning cable is tiny but tough. Sheathed in braided nylon and strengthened to stand up to the roughest treatment, this little cable can keep you charging on the go without fraying.
This Friday, I’ll be making my first flight to Hong Kong. It’ll start in Cleveland and involve two stops, and that means more time in the air than I care to consider, with the longest leg running for 13 hours twixt Chicago and Tokyo. So, how do I intend to pass that time? With my iPad, a battery backup, and my 10 best apps for killing 10 hours on an airplane.
After Macworld / iWorld 2014 came to a close in San Francisco last Saturday, the AppleTell team sat around a tiny table at Uncle Vito’s discussing our favorite products of the show. After nearly a week of reflection and pouring through our notes, Kirk Hiner, David Temple and I have finally selected our favorite products of Macworld / iWorld 2014: an app for urban explorers, a cube for your pets, and Momentum for your ears.
I was pleased to discover that Diigo v5.7, which was released on February 27, has evolved to become a solid, fast browser that still resembles Chrome in some good ways, but has a distinct personality of its own, and includes a Reader feature that works similarly to Safari’s. The one in Diigo works great, as do other aspects of the browser, which is a good choice as a general purpose browser.
I dutifully updated my iPad 2 to iOS 7.1 Wednesday afternoon, barely two weeks after installing the iOS 7.0.1 security patch update. I wasn’t really in any rush, but the promise of better performance on the iPhone 4 provided faint hope that some of that might spill over onto the old second-generation iPad. Alas, it doesn’t seem to have. The old tablet seems no less sluggish than it did with iOS 7.0.x.
Adobe’s Photoshop Elements has been the benchmark application by which consumer (ie: relatively affordable) image editing apps are judged for 18 years. First introduced as Photoshop LE in 1996, Photoshop Elements 12 is still the image editor to have if you’re only having one in the sub-$100 class.
scriptus is an iOS notepad and text editor, with a raft of cool features, some of them unmatched by ostensibly full-featured iOS text editors. The just-released version 3.2 adds more gestures (such as two fingers to move the cursor and three to select text), auto-capitalization, auto-correction, and status bar on and off. If you’re not a scriptus user and work with text on an iPad, this extraordinary and innovative text editor app is worth checking out.
You can’t really evaluate a workhorse computer until it’s been used for a while in your work environment, but early days impressions are mostly positive. It’s amazingly slim, but not much different footprint-wise than the old MacBook. I had been curious about how it would perform and feel in tasks and venues that have been more and more shunted to the iPad. My verdict is that this 13-inch MacBook Air really isn’t an iPad substitute, but at $1,099 represents the most laptop for the money Apple has ever offered.