TechnologyTell

The iPad passé? I think not

The latest meme circulating, gathering momentum after Apple’s fiscal 3rd-quarter financials were announced showing a second consecutive quarter of negative sales iPad sales growth, is that tablets—our beloved iPad included—are passé. The IT market is once again proving to have the attention span of a fruit fly.

The Best Free iOS Apps for July 25, 2014

This week’s best free iOS apps include the latest TMNT game, called Rooftop Run. It’ll have you running and fighting through New York saving the day as only a group of adolescent mutated turtles can. Revolution 60 tasks you with regaining control of an orbital weapons platform. And the latest from Konami is called Swords & Poker Adventures. It’s a mix of poker and weapons.

Would a 30% thinner iPad mini “Air” revive sales?

I’m not sure the world really needs a 5.25mm thick iPad mini. It would be interesting technologically, but he current mini seems comfortably small, light, and thin enough for me. However, if Apple indeed does launch an iPad mini Air, I hope enough people will disagree with me on that point to make it a success for Apple and secure the mini’s future.

Could you do 80% of your computing on an iPad?

Last week, Tim Cook told the Wall Street Journal that he does 80% of his computing work as Apple CEO on his iPad, and he thinks you should too, maintaining “There’s no reason why everyone shouldn’t be like that.” But it’s that last 20% that’s the sticking point, preventing the iPad from displacing a laptop or desktop PC as a completely satisfactory general work platform.

Why square format pictures are cool, even with an iPhone or iPad

Square format pictures are currently in vogue on social media and elsewhere, but they go back a lot farther, and some of us just like the symmetry and compositional simplicity. I’m a longtime fan of square photo compositions, having cut my serious photographic teeth on medium format 2-1/4″ x 2-1/4″ twin lens reflex (TLR) cameras using 120 or 220 rollfilm back in the 1970s.

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Texting while driving is worse than driving drunk, so why no equivalent social stigma?

While 4x increased crash risk with cellphone-gabbing drivers is plenty bad enough, texting while driving raises the risk ante by factors between 6x to 20x (depending on whose metrics you’re reading) more dangerous than driving over the legal blood alcohol limit. Logic would dictate that if people driving drunk outrages you, to be consistent, driving while cellphone gabbing and driving while texting should outrage you 4x and 6x to 20x more, respectively.

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Making the switch to satellite Internet – latency and reliability

A month and a half ago, I switched to a satellite Internet service from the tower-based wireless broadband service I’ve been using since 2009, and which I would still be using were it not for reliability issues. Here are my early-days impressions of satellite service as an alternative to land-based networks.

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The Best Free Apps for July 18, 2014

Do you listen to podcasts? Overcast is a new podcast playing app that does all the normal stuff, but it has some other interesting features that are definitely worth a look. If you’re looking for a new game to play, there are plenty amongst this week’s best free apps. Ingress is about a mysterious new energy that’s transforming the world around you, and Sonic fans are going to be excited for Sonic Jump Fever.

Is the Internet making us stupid? (or, most of the important stuff I know I learned from books)

Researchers find online reading has a negative impact on people’s cognition, with concentration, comprehension, absorption, and recall rates when engaging with online material all much lower than with hard copy. I don’t think Internet-enabled instant access to information from a firehose, as it were, is making me smarter. More broadly informed in a chaotic way, perhaps.

Apple’s A8 system-on-chip isn’t even out yet, but A9 rumor mills are already grinding

Apple is widely anticipated to be launching a presumably quad core, 64 bit, ARM based A8 central processor system-on-ship in a few weeks to power the new iPhone 6 and the next round of upgrades to the iPad Air and iPad mini with Retina Display. The A8 SoC is plenty exciting, but there’s always something newer and faster coming next as chip foundaries vie for Apple orders.

The Best Free Apps for July 11, 2014

if you’re a fan of the Assassin’s Creed series, you’ll certainly be happy to know the newly free-to-play Assassin’s Creed Pirates game headlines this week’s best free apps list. You’ll also want to want to check out the latest from Wizards of the Coast—Magic 2015—and yet another Angry Birds game: Angry Birds Star Wars II.

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With an iPhone 6 “phablet” coming, does the iPad mini have a future?

A degree of iPad mini sales cannibalization by the iPhone 6 is inevitable. The operative question is “how much?” If a large enough proportion of potentially prospective iPad mini buyers actually do decide that the compromises imposed by an iPhone 6 phablet as a tablet surrogate are tolerable, then the market will have spoken and it will be goodbye iPad mini.