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Thursday July 31

08:18
Researchers: USB firmware exploitable for computer...

A pair of researchers are going to discuss a giant security exploit in how the Universal Serial Bus (USB) firmware can be exploited. Security researchers Karsten Nohl and Jakob Lell have developed "BadUSB," a malware package resident in USB firmware that can be used as an attack vector to install any manner of software on a PC, with little or no warning to the user, and as of right now, no effective way to stop the attack....

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08:04
9to5Toys Lunch Break: Transcend MacBook Air/Retina...

Be sure to follow 9to5Toys to keep up with the best gear and deals on the web: TwitterRSS FeedFacebookGoogle+ and Safari push notifications.
Today’s can’t miss deals:

Amazon Gold Box: Transcend Memory up to 50% off, includes MacBook Air/Retina Pro SSD kits and SD cards

...

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08:00
Shazam lands on the Mac with new menu bar utility

Shazam is now available on the Mac, landing in the Mac App Store as menu bar app. Announced today, the new utility identifies music and TV playing in your surrounding environment, notifying you when it has made a match.

When a title is identified,...

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07:55
Apple opens first 'open-air' temp shop in...

As anticipated, Apple has launched its first-ever "open-air" temporary store, located inside of the Glattzentrum mall in Wallisellen, Switzerland. The mall's primary Apple Store is undergoing an expansion. Workers won't say how long construction is expected to last, but the temporary shop has opened earlier than rumored, which could mean that the expansion will be ready in time for product launches expected in September and October, such as new iPhones and iPads....

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07:30
The Week in iOS Apps: Jazz greats

Jazz greatsThis week’s roundup of new apps includes a celebration of Blue Note, one of the greatest labels in jazz—and music—history. But if that's too heady for you, we've also got Sharknado.Blue Note 75The diamond anniversary of a legendary jazz label is celebrated in the Blue Note 75 iPad app. Immerse yourself in the history of the music: If you have a Spotify, Rdio, or Deezer subscription, the app ties into those accounts to give you album-length dips into the history being described. (Other users can listen to 30-second sound clips and buy albums and singles directly from iTunes.) In addition to timelines, artist catalogues, and more, the app also includes an interactive magazine featuring news and other information about jazz today.To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here

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07:23
Why IDC sales estimates are complete BS

Just last month we detailed why relying on marketshare predictions from research companies like IDC and Gartner often lead to disastrously off-base conclusions. Even more jarring is that these research firms can't even manage to put together...

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07:20
Apple Stores to finally begin iPhone 5s display...


Apple will finally begin offering iPhone 5s screen replacements in its official U.S. and Canada retail stores in the coming days, according to several sources. Apple Store Genius Bars are said to have begun taking delivery of large quantities of iPhone 5s screens for the repair program. The crucial service’s debut is currently scheduled for Monday, August 4th. This upcoming rollout will mark an official launch as a few stores in the U.S. have piloted iPhone 5s screen repairs over the past several months. Apple officially rolled out iPhone 5c screen repairs in January, and it began replacing other iPhone 5c and 5s parts late in 2013. The screen replacements will cost approximately $...

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07:18
Russia to Apple: All Your Code Are Belong to Us

Russia doesn't trust the United States government or Apple, so it is asking for source code from the Mac, iPhone and iPad maker to look for clues showing the devices are being used to spy on its citizens and government officials. The country also wants source code from SAP citing privacy concerns.The Mac Observer Spin: Targeting Apple and SAP with the code request makes sense considering both are high profile companies that are unlikely to cooperate. That may be exactly what Russian officials are hoping for, or they may simply be posturing by naming popular and well known companies.

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07:14
Samsung earnings disappoint as company blames...

While Apple continues to see strong growth with its hot-selling lineup of smartphones, rival Samsung reported lower-than-expected earnings on Thursday, posting its smallest profit in two years.

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07:10
Crowdfunding service Indiegogo launches iPhone app




Crowdfunding platform Indiegogo today announced that it’s finally launching an app for iPhone and iPod touch that comes alongside a new look for the website. The app includes features for both users discovering and supporting projects and those managing Indiegogo campaigns they’ve launched:
A full list of features in the first release is below:
Supporting Indiegogo campaigns

  • Discovering new campaigns through recommendations based on...
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07:00
Runtastic Orbit: The new activity tracker on the...

It seems like everyone is getting into the wearables market these days. There's Fitbit, Misfit, Nike Fuel Band, Withings Pulse, and about twenty others I can think of. So when a new tracker shows up on the market, it has to have some redeeming value...

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06:53
Lollapalooza hub featured on Apple TV Red Bull...

Ahead of Red Bull TV’s global live stream of this year’s Lollapalooza music festival in Downtown Chicago, the Apple TV Red Bull TV channel has picked up a dedicated Lollapalooza section hyping the event.
Red Bull TV will be exclusively broadcasting the annual music festival with three channels: one channel with behind-the-scenes interviews and sessions with featured artists and two more channels for streaming live performances. Red Bull TV will also offer on-demand video of performances shortly after each one.
Views can find the concerts and footage on Red Bull TV’s various apps including iOS and Android, and the entire festival will be available live and on-demand via Apple TV through the...

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06:33
Apps of the Week: NPR One, Crazy Taxi: City Rush,...

New Apps Beehive (free) — Beehive - The Social Network Filter from Kendall Innovations is that rare thing: a new social networking app that should be useful to certain people. The app takes your Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram feeds, and lets you narrow them…

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06:30
Ember for Mac gains 'hugely-requested'...

Popular web clipper and digital scrapbooking app Ember was updated today with a killer new feature -- the ability to make a video recording of your screen. No longer limited by only static images, Ember now allows you to capture your screen as you...

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06:25
Apple releases first OS X 10.9.5 beta, Safari seeds...


The first beta for OS X 10.9.5 as well as the new Safari builds are out the door.
Per AppleInsider, Apple on Wednesday pushed out to developers the first beta of the upcoming OS X 10.9.5 Mavericks maintenance update alongside new builds of Safari 7.0.6 and 6.0.6.
The new OS X 10.9.5 Mavericks seed, build number 13F7, comes one month to the day after Apple released OS X 10.9.4 to the public in June, which brought fixes for Wi-Fi connectivity and wake-from-sleep bugs.

With the new seed, Apple is asking developers to focus on Safari, USB, USB Smart Cards and graphics. Previous updates, like beta versions of the aforementioned OS X 10.9.4, brought similar...

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06:24
Shazam arrives for Mac with always-on detection

Music and TV recognition service Shazam has today launched its first-ever Mac app. While similar in design to the iOS client, the Mac app is able to listen constantly, generating an ongoing list of items it hears. Notifications give users the ability to jump quickly into pages for lyrics and/or buying the media in question....

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06:16
iPhone Apps: Facebook Pages Manager. Kindle, LinkedIn
06:15
Shazam Song Recognition Comes to the Mac

The iPhone music identification app Shazam is getting a little less mobile, but in a good way. A new version for OS X was released on Thursday that offers the same discovery features as its iPhone counterpart, but designed to live in your Mac's menu bar.The Mac Observer Spin: Not having to scramble for your iPhone in a coffee shop to Shazam a song that's playing sounds pretty cool.

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06:08
Rumor: Apple to launch iPhone 6 handset on October...


The current iPhone 6 rumor mill is now pointing towards a specific release date of October 14th, one month after an unveiling in September.
Per MacRumors, a source with knowledge of an Apple Store meeting has indicated that Apple is planning to announce the next-generation iPhone 6 at an event scheduled for September 16th, to be followed by an initial rollout on October 14th.
The source notes that a senior Store Leader mentioned October 14th as being an “immense” day for Apple, adding that the whole month of October would be very busy for stores and the company itself. Apple is also said to planning a media event for Tuesday, September 16, coming a month ahead of the device’s launch.

A large number...

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06:00
Rumor Roundup: Gin it up for pageviews

Apple unlikely to release the 5.5-inch iPhone and iWatch in December as rumored (9to5 Mac)

A post on a Chinese social network claims the products earlier rumored to launch next year will instead be launched in December. As 9to5 Mac correctly points...

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05:54
Resurgent T-Mobile passes 50M subscribers, but CEO...

U.S. carrier T-Mobile on Thursday posted strong results for its fiscal second quarter, adding 1.5 million subscribers, more customers than any other wireless provider, while recording a $391 million profit on revenues of $7.2 billion.

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05:32
∞ Pomplamoose uses Mac and projector to create...

[VIDEO] Even if you are not familiar with Pomplamoose, you’ve probably seen them in one of their commercials, like this one for Hundai.

Their latest effort is a cover of Video Killed the Radio Star, filmed using a Mac (maybe a MacBook Air?) and an Epson projector.

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05:12
Mac gets Shazam’s always-on music and TV recognition

Just as it does on your iOS device, the Mac version of the Shazam app will listen for music and attempt to identify it using its hefty database of tunes. Now it does TV too. Big privacy implications, however.
∞ Read this on The Loop

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05:06
Get Ready for 1Password Everywhere in iOS 8

AgileBits, the maker of the popular password management app 1Password, is ready to move beyond auto-filling website logins only in their own iPhone and iPad app and plans to bring that functionality to any app that taps into its API in iOS 8. With 1Password support built into other apps, users will be able to enter their user names and passwords with Touch ID, and AgileBits has a video showing just how seamless the process can be.The Mac Observer Spin: One touch login via Touch ID and 1Password is a perfect example of why Apple needed to open up iOS more. Features like this will make the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch so much easier to use.

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05:00
Timeful for iOS aims to help you make time to get...


If you’ve ever lamented that “there aren’t enough hours in the day” to get everything done, an iOS app called Timeful might just be what you’re looking for. Timeful is a calendar and to-do manager that examines how long each of your to-do items should take, where each task will take place, and more to find the perfect opening in your schedule to get it done.
Timeful will automatically figure out what you need to do and when you can best accomplish it, even taking into account whether you’re a “morning person” or a “night person” in order to...

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05:00
Percentage Calculator does the math so you don'...

Percentage Calculator is one of those utility apps that you don't realize you need until you need it. The app is not your typical calculator with a numeric keypad and operators. Instead, it's a forumla tool that lets you calculate interest,...

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04:55
Security researchers say USB security ‘broken,’ can...

The USB standard has a fundamental security flaw that allows an attacker to take over any device it is connected to, whether PC or Mac, say security researchers in a frightening piece by Wired.
Describing the proof-of-concept Karsten Nohl and Jakob Lell plan to present at the Black Hat conference next week, they say the weakness is fundamental to the way in which USB works. Rather than storing malicious files on a USB device, the researchers managed to hack the USB controller chip that enables a USB device to communicate with a computer, changing its firmware. That means it can allow absolutely any USB device, from a USB key to a keyboard, to be compromised.

“These problems can’t be patched,” says Nohl, who will join Lell in presenting the research at the Black Hat security conference in Las Vegas. “We’re exploiting the very way that USB is designed.”
“You can give it to your IT security people,...

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04:53
The holy grail of battery design

Battery tech just took a huge leap forward, as Stanford scientists have solved a problem that has been a major roadblock in battery design.
∞ Read this on The Loop

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04:35
Ice cream that changes color when you lick it
04:31
Facebook puts noble face on what is really a self-...

GigaOM:

Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg said back in February that he wanted to make basic internet access free in emerging markets, through the Internet.org initiative. Well here we go: Internet.org has introduced an app that will act as a limited portal to the internet, and it’s rolling out first in Zambia.

Facebook’s strategy is to enter a market with little to no existing internet access, make a deal with a large provider to create a large swath of internet coverage. Access is free, but the ecosystem is controlled and extremely limited.
∞ Read this on The Loop

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04:00
Microsoft Sends Cortana to Far-Flung Corners of the...


Microsoft is preparing to debut an update to its Windows Phone 8.1 operating system, which includes expansion of its Cortana personal assistant availability to more regions. The update introduces Cortana to China and the UK in beta form, and Canada, India and Australia in alpha mode. Cortana is only just starting to make waves in the market, several years after Apple debuted Siri, while Android's Google Now has been available for some time. Cortana is named after the AI character Cortana in Microsoft's Halo video game series.

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03:20
Questionable rumor of iPhone 6 launch on October...

Apple retail employees are a great resource for advice on picking your Macs and iOS devices, but info on Apple’s secret launch plans for its biggest product launches of the year, not so much. The information was supposedly relayed during what Apple calls an “all hands meeting” at one of Apple’s stores. MacRumors cites an Apple retail employee for what would seem like a highly unlikely story of the iPhone 6 launching on October 14th.

Apple may be planning to launch the iPhone 6 on Tuesday, October 14 as the month itself will be an incredibly busy one for the company, according to a source that spoke to MacRumors citing an internal Apple Retail Store meeting.
The source notes that a senior Store Leader mentioned October 14th as being an “immense” day for Apple, adding that the whole month of October would be very busy for stores and...

| Read more »
02:00
First look: Shazam for Mac

As you may have heard, Shazam’s music recognition technology will be incorporated into Siri in iOS 8. Having the ability to identify a song playing in the background (and then purchase it via the iTunes Store) is powerful for mobile devices. But what about those of us sitting in front of our Macs?
The answer comes today in the form of the free Shazam for Mac app. Available from the Mac App Store, you simply download, double-click to install, and Shazam keeps an ear out via your Mac’s built-in mic or a microphone plugged into the computer’s microphone port (USB mics are not currently supported). I’ve had a couple of days to play with it and here’s what I’ve seen.To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here...

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01:12
Rumor: Apple's 'iPhone 6' to launch...

Adding to rumors and speculation surrounding Apple's highly anticipated "iPhone 6" debut, a questionable report on Thursday claims the company will be releasing the handset on Oct. 14, one month after an unveiling in September.

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Wednesday July 30

23:45
Shazam launches Mac app with always-on listening mode

Popular music, TV and ad recognition app Shazam made its way to the Mac on Wednesday with a new app that operates in background to serve up instant matches, with one-click access to lyrics, music videos and iTunes purchasing.

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23:08
Shazam for Mac brings instant music recognition and...


Shazam, the popular music identification app for iOS that was recently integrated into iOS 8’s updated version of Siri, has launched a new Mac application that resides in the menu bar listening for music to identify. Once it has detected a song, you’ll get a notification with the name, artist, and more of the music being played.
After a song is identified, you can also get instant access to the lyrics, music video, or iTunes Store link...

| Read more »
19:45
ACM 265: Ford goes iPhone and Facebook’s App Breakup

Ford is giving BlackBerry a big kick in the pants by dumping the company's smartphones in favor of Apple's iPhone. Jeff and Bryan have plenty to say on what that means for both Apple and BlackBerry, plus they rant on Facebook and the decision to force private messages into a separate iPhone app, and they go with a listener request and look at the magic PC market numbers Gartner and IDC spew.

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16:25
Brett Domino Explains Pop Music’s Formula

Have you ever heard a song on the radio and thought there had to be a formula behind pop music? Well Brett Domino found one, and has broken it down on YouTube for everyone to see. Not only can you enjoy the results of his formula in the initial video, but once you have mastered his original techniques, you can level up with the advanced techniques. It took until very nearly August, but I think we have the song of the summer in Pinocchio from the advanced class.

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15:03
New iPhones: Now With Less Sapphire

Sapphire glass covers on the new iPhone models are less likely all the time. According to a report from LED Inside, supply chain analysts state orders should have been placed in large numbers by now, and thus far those orders do not exist.

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13:55
What Amazon Didn’t Say in Its Blog Post about...

Amazon has come forth and told unto us it is waging holy war against Hachette for lo! The children. For only lower book prices can save the children-and indeed publishers and authors, too-and those greedy publishers are too stupid to understand. Bryan Chaffin thinks there's more to the picture.

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12:16
Apple Releases Fixed Version of MacBook Air EFI...

Apple released MacBook Air EFI Firmware Update 2.9.1 on Wednesday to replace the problem-ridden 2.9 version it rolled out, and then pulled, earlier in July. The update addresses an issue where the 2011 MacBook Air failed to properly wake from sleep.

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11:45
OS X Yosemite: How to Turn Translucency Off or On

OS X Yosemite lets parts of windows take on the general color of the background behind it. It's a translucent effect because details cannot be readily made out. For those who don't like it, John Martellaro shows how to turn it off.

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10:59
Report: Apple TV relaunch not coming this year

Apple engineers working on the new version of Apple TV have been on timelines that assume a 2015 launch, The Information reports. Those engineers “have been told by their bosses not to expect a launch this year.” It’s been expected for some time that Apple would release a newer…

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10:43
Report: Apple eliminating positions of some Beats...

Apple has started transitioning employees and technology from Beats, but not all Beats employees will be making the move, 9to5Mac reports. While many Beats employees in development and creative roles have been offered jobs at Apple, Beats’ support, finance, and HR departments “have already been largely dismantled,” according to…

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09:43
TMO Daily Observations: 2014-07-30

Apple keeps rolling out minor updates to its Mac product line, but hasn't had a major release announcement since last fall. John Martellaro and Adam Christianson join Jeff Gamet to look at the lack of big news from Apple, the incremental update cycle the company seems to be locked into right now, and how that could be impacting its image.

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07:26
Russian government seeks Apple source code

The Russian government is asking for access to Apple’s source code, in order to ensure the company’s products aren’t used for spying purposes, Reuters reports. Communications Minister Nikolai Nikiforov said in a statement, “Edward Snowden’s revelations in 2013 and U.S. intelligence services’ public statements about the strengthening of…

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07:26
Apple May Have Accidentally Leaked New 27-inch iMac

Apple first accidentally mentioned a new Mac mini model in its Boot Camp support documents, and may have leaked a 27-inch iMac refresh, too. A chart showing the current 27-inch iMac, along with a model tagged as "Mid 2014," looks like a hint that an update is coming soon.The Mac Observer Spin: Considering Apple listed two unreleased Mac models in its Boot Camp compatibility chart, either someone needs some remedial copy and paste training, or a reminder that unannounced products shouldn't appear in support documents.

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06:00
Apple Confirms Purchase of Swell Talk Radio App for...

Following reports that it was purchasing Swell, the iPhone app for building custom talk radio-like stations, Apple has confirmed it is the new owner of the app and its developer Concept.io.The Mac Observer Spin: Fist BookLight and now Swell. It looks like Apple is getting serious about improving content discovery through the iTunes Store.

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05:27
Square announces new Reader for chip cards

Square has announced Square Reader for chip cards, a new credit card reader built to handle EMV chip cards—credit cards equipped with microchips, as already found in many countries around the world. The major U.S. credit card companies have planned to implement a fraud…

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04:45
iOS 7: Preventing Unauthorized Purchases

For today's tip, Melissa Holt's gonna go over a hidden setting that may let your kid purchase apps or media when he isn't supposed to. Turn this off, and you can rest assured that little Johnny won't be able to buy ten apps just because you allowed him to get one. Unless he knows your Apple ID password, that is, but you would never give him that, would you? Good.

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Tuesday July 29

19:02
Apple Possibly Leaked New Mac mini Models

Apple updated a support article that refers to a Mid 2014 model Mac mini, which is the first mention of any sort of attention paid to the Mac mini, last updated in October 2012.The Mac Observer Spin: I'd like this to be true, but at this point odds are 50/50 that there is an actual new Mac mini, or that someone was pasting in updated Macs and got a little trigger happy with Cmd-V.

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17:02
Apple Possibly Leaked New Mac mini Models

Apple updated a support article that refers to a Mid 2014 model Mac mini, which is the first mention of any sort of attention paid to the Mac mini, last updated in October 2012.The Mac Observer Spin: I'd like this to be true, but at this point odds are 50/50 that there is an actual new Mac mini, or that someone was pasting in updated Macs and got a little trigger happy with cmd-V.

| Read more »
16:57
Ford Ditching BlackBerry for iPhone for Global...

Ford announced on Tuesday that it was moving some 9,300 corporate employees from BlackBerry to iPhone. The move will be a blow to BlackBerry, which is trying to rebuild itself under the leadership of CEO John Chen. At the same time, it's another boost for Apple's enterprise ambition, which recently announced a mobile alliance with IBM.

| Read more »
14:04
‘Window Plug’ Portable Solar Charger Concept Design

Yanko Design is showing off a concept called "Window Plug," and it's very cool. It's a portable solar charger that you can stick on a window. It has a built-in battery that self-charges, but it also has a plug for accessing that power for your devices. So far, this is a concept only. In the comments, the creator said that he still has technical hurdles to overcome, not least of which is having the device generate enough power to meet the needs of a wide variety of devices. But I am lust with the idea of a charger that I could stick on a hotel window, a car window, or...wait for it...a airplane window. Accordingly, I'm pulling for the product to come to market.

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12:19
MotionArtist for Mac: $9

MotionArtist is a very cool piece of software that allows you to layout comics in traditional panel form with word bubbles, and also add motion, sound, and even a 3D parallax effect to scenes. The animation tools are designed to be quite easy to use, and it's focused primarily on adding motion. Through our deal, you can get it for $9, a lot less than the $60 retail price.

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10:10
OS X Yosemite: How to Trek into Dark Mode

OS X Yosemite public beta enables an intriguing feature referred to as Dark Mode. No one is quite sure why it's there, but it's very cool. John Martellaro explains how to enable it.

| Read more »
09:45
Apple Retail Out Almost $310K in Scam, Suspect...

Apple lost US$309,768 in merchandise out of its retail stores in 16 states thanks to Sharron Laverne Parrish Jr. and a debit card scam. Authorities have arrested Mr. Parrish, and thanks to his clever social engineering, Apple will likely be left holding the bill.The Mac Observer Spin: Forced code scams happen more often than you'd think, so it isn't surprising Mr. Parrish was able to make off with so much before getting caught. Apple will most likely change its policies to require employees to call banks on declined cards instead of leaving that in customer's hands

| Read more »
09:12
TMO Daily Observations: 2014-07-29

The future for magazines looked promising thanks to the iPad, but not everyone is pleased with how that worked out. Kelly Guimont and John Martellaro join Jeff Gamet to talk about how the digital magazine has been something of a disappointment, and why John is planning on going back to print. They also offer up their take on companies like Facebook splitting features across multiple apps.

| Read more »
07:14
Apple TV Adds Fox Now, CNBC Channels

Fox Now and CNBC joined the Apple TV channel lineup on Tuesday, giving viewers access to shows like Cosmos, 24: Live Another Day, live CNBC content, and more. Unfortunately, the content you get is limited unless you also have a cable subscription.The Mac Observer Spin: More content is great for Apple TV owners, but continuing to leave most of it stuck behind cable pay walls isn't much of a help to viewers who don't want to shell out the money for full subscription packages.

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06:27
Apple TV adds FOX Now, CNBC channels

Apple TV has added two new channels, FOX Now and CNBC. Both channels require a cable subscription to access full content, although a number of FOX episodes and CNBC clips are available for viewing without authentication. The FOX Now channel includes a number of popular…

| Read more »
05:55
Apple Drops Samsung Patent Appeal, Ends Injunction...

Apple is throwing in the towel on its efforts to get an injunction blocking the sale of several Samsung smartphones related to their first patent infringement trial. Apple told the court on Monday that it is dropping its cross appeal in the case and now will instead focus on winning an injunction in their second mobile device infringement trial.The Mac Observer Spin: It seems that -- at least on some level -- both Apple and Samsung are getting tired of their ongoing patent infringement fight, although not tired enough to find some sort of agreement. For Samsung, giving up doesn't make sense considering its drag-it-out-in-court tactics are working just fine.

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04:46
Retina MacBook Pro gets Faster Processors, More RAM

Apple confirmed the Retina MacBook Pro update rumors on Tuesday when it rolled out new models with faster processors and more RAM. The new 13-inch and 15-inch models look just like the versions they replace, but with more power under the hood.The Mac Observer Spin: With today's Retina MacBook Pro refresh, that leaves only the Mac mini waiting for an update.

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Monday July 28

18:20
Beats Music Adds More User Controls to iOS App,...

Beats Music, the music streaming service being acquired by Apple, released a new version of its iOS app that adds several user controls. Beats Music 2.2.0 includes a "Tune Your Taste" control that allows you change your "Just For You" recommendations. The service has also begun verifying user profile for the famous and well-to-do.

| Read more »
17:48
Facebook Forces iPhone Users To Separate Messaging...

Facebook is disabling messaging entirely in the iPhone and Android apps, forcing users who wish to use the feature to download a separate app.The Mac Observer Spin: I regularly consider deleting the Facebook app already, and now I'm supposed to have two!? I'll pass.

| Read more »
15:56
Blockchain.info Brings Bitcoin Wallet App Back to...

Blockchain.info has brought its Bitcoin wallet app back to the App Store after having been kicked out by Apple in February. Blockchain 2.0.1 has the ability to send and receive Bitcoins from your iPhone, an important feature for Bitcoin users.

| Read more »
14:56
‘Another One Bites The Dust’ Played Using Disk Drives

Check out the latest from Arganalth, a musician who uses the noises made by hard drives and floppy drives to make music. Watching videos like "Misirlou" is hypnotic as the drive heads slip back and forth making noise, so they're fun to see as well as hear. His latest one is "Another One Bites The Dust," by Queen. While all of the videos are impressive, this is a standout among them. Enjoy it below [Via Macgasm]:

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13:57
Lord & Taylor, Hudson’s Bay Company Deploy...

Department stores Lord & Taylor and Hudson's Bay Company began rolling out iBeacons in a number of locations as of Monday. These iBeacons are implemented by Swirl, a company which develops mobile marketing solutions.The Mac Observer Spin: This could be neato, this could be horrible. Difficult to say.

| Read more »
13:18
The Mac Mastery Training Bundle: $29

We have a great bundle of training videos for you designed to you master your Mac. It has eight individual course, including:

Mac Clarity - Master Your Mac
Productivity For Mac Users
One On One Apple Personal Training
Mastering Keynote Presentations
Become a Rocker With GarageBand
Clean & Organize Your Mac In Under 2 Hours
iPhoto For Beginners
Basics Of Using A Mac

That's hundreds of lectures and more than 30 hours of video training. Individually, these training courses are $408, but through our deal you can get them for $29.

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12:39
Hilton to Turn Your iPhone into Your Hotel Room Key

Your iPhone is already an iPod, a phone, and an Internet connection device, and soon it'll be your room key at Hilton hotels. The company is launching a new service where iPhone owners can choose their room and check in, and next year they'll be able to use their smartphone as a room key, too.The Mac Observer Spin: Remote room selection and check-in, plus the ability to use my iPhone as a room key? This is going to be awesome at trade shows and conferences -- assuming you can get an Internet connection.

| Read more »
11:55
OS X Yosemite: What Does That Little Green Button do...

Since the beginning of time, well since 2001, the little green button at the top of every OS X window has expanded the current window to take up all available space. OS X Yosemite changes the default behavior of that green button for the first time.

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11:03
Popular Bitcoin wallet app Blockchain returns to App...

Apple has reinstated popular Bitcoin wallet app Blockchain to the App Store. It’s not an entirely unexpected move, considering Apple recently started allowing Bitcoin apps back in the App Store, after making a change to its App Store Review Guidelines. Blockchain was originally pulled from the App…

| Read more »
10:02
TMO Daily Observations: 2014-07-28

Apple just bout BookLight and is in the process of buying Swell. John Martellaro and Kelly Guimont join Jeff Gamet to talk about what Apple's latest media acquisitions mean for the ebook, news and podcasting world, as well as end users. Plus, bonus oblique Joss Whedon and Space Ghost references.

| Read more »
06:55
Apple Ready to Buy Swell Talk Show App in $30M Deal

The radio news talk show listening app Swell is about to be snapped up by Apple in a US$30 million deal. Swell is known for its ability to build custom news playlists with content from sources such NPR, BBC, and ABC and play back that content through its iPhone app.The Mac Observer Spin: First Apple buys BookLamp, and now it's about to close a deal with Swell. Purchases like these sure make it look like Apple wants to find a better way for consumers to discover online content and books.

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06:09
Report Claims Retina MacBook Pro Speed Bump Coming...

Apple is reportedly planning on giving the Retina MacBook Pro a speed bump on Tuesday with updated Intel Haswell Core i7 processors. The new models will still be available in 13-inch and 15-inch models, and will all come with at least 16 GB RAM.The Mac Observer Spin: Assuming the report about tomorrow's Retina MacBook Pro refresh is accurate, it's welcome even if it isn't dramatic.

| Read more »
06:04
Report: Apple Stores to support carrier early iPhone...

Apple Stores will soon allow customers to purchase new iPhones using early upgrade programs from carriers, including AT&T Next, T-Mobile JUMP, and Verizon Edge, according to 9to5Mac. It’s unclear whether or when Apple will support Sprint’s One Up program. The report claims that “many” stores will offer the purchase…

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05:04
EU Greenlights Apple’s Beats Acquisition

Apple made a big leap forward in its planned US$3 billion purchase of Beats Electronics and Beats Music when the European Commission announced on Monday that is has approved the deal. The Commission doesn't see a combined Apple and Beats as a serious threat to the headphone market, and said there are plenty of competitors who make substantially different products.The Mac Observer Spin: With the EC's approval out of the way Apple is a step closer to closing its Beats purchase. Next stop: U.S. approval.

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04:45
Report: Apple buying talk radio app Swell

Re/code is reporting that Apple is about to acquire Swell, an app described as “Pandora-for-talk-radio,” for $30 million. Although it hasn’t yet been confirmed by either company, the report cites multiple sources, and Re/code has a strong track record when it comes to Apple…

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Friday July 25

17:03
3 Free iOS Apps To Help You Find Something To Watch

Looking for something to watch? Vern Seward points out 3 iOS apps that'll help in this week's Free on iTubes. Yidio, Frequency, and Fan TV.

| Read more »
16:57
9 Swift Resources for iOS 8 Developers

If you're interested in Apple's new programming language announced at WWDC, there are a variety of resources available online now. Kelly Guimont gathered up nine resources to help you get going.

| Read more »
15:39
OS X and iOS Application Compatibility Table

If you are waiting to install a new OS (such as the Yosemite Public Beta) because you are worried about compatibility issues, check out the Application Compatibility Table over at RoaringApps. There are compatibility charts from Snow Leopard up to Yosemite, and from iOS 5 up to iOS 8. If you don't see an app listed there and you know its status, you can submit it to the list. It's a great resource that is easily searchable if you need to determine what does and doesn't work.

| Read more »
14:35
Best News in the Verse: Firefly Cast Reuniting for...

Browncoats everywhere are celebrating the news that the full cast of Joss Whedon's Firefly are reuniting for Firefly Online (site down as of this writing). io9 reported the news from San Diego Comicon Friday that Nathan Fillion, Gina Torres, Alan Tudyk, Morena Baccarin, Adam Baldwin, Jewel Staite, Sean Maher, Summer Glau, and Ron Glass will all be contributing voice acting to the game reprising their characters in the most successful failed show of all time. Alan Tudyk will be doing additional characters, as well, and Michael Fairman will be reprising his role as Niska. As a teaser, the game producers posted a video called "If I Were a Captain" (below) that features the voice of Ron Glass and Captain Mal himself (near the end). Color me giddy!

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14:26
Bose Sues Apple Acquisition Beats for Patent...

Bose Corporation filed a complaint with the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) Friday accusing Beats Electronics of willfully infringing on five patents. Bose also launched a parallel lawsuit. Beats is in the process of being acquired by Apple, and Bose has accused the company of violating its patents in Beats Studio and Beats Studio Wireless headphones.

| Read more »
13:11
iZZi Slim 4-Lenses-In-One Photo Kit: $95

iPhoneographers, we have a deal for you today called iZZi Slim, a case with a built-in lens kit for your iPhone 5 and 5s. The iZZi Slim included 4 lenses on one attachment, allowing you to switch lenses just by turning them for fast changes. The lenses include Fisheye lens, 2x Telephoto Lens, Macro Lens and Wide-Angle Lens (you access the macro lens by unscrewing the wide angle lens). The iZZi Slim is regularly priced at $155, but through our deal you can get it for $95. This price also includes a bonus Bluetooth shutter.

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11:44
Take Control of Yosemite Beta Testing Released

There were a few hurdles in the release of the Yosemite public beta, primarily in people successfully downloading the installer. Now that it's more likely you actually have the installer, Joe Kissell has some tips for you on running a Mac OS Beta. He's been beta testing since 10.3, so he knows of what he speaks. He's put together a great set of tips in Take Control of Beta Testing Yosemite, the latest title from Take Control Books. This one has a suggested price of $5 and is available via Leanpub to allow for quicker turnaround on updates (since betas can evolve dramatically). This is more than just a grand tour of new features, it also discusses what beta testing entails, tips for both before and after installing, and advice on how to report bugs.

| Read more »
11:33
Congress passes bill to legalize phone unlocking

The U.S. House of Representatives unanimously passed a bill today that will legalize cell phone unlocking, following the Senate’s approval of the bill last week. All the “Unlocking Consumer Choice and Wireless Competition Act” needs now is for President Obama to sign the bill into law — a virtual…

| Read more »
10:09
Bose sues Beats over noise-canceling patents

BREAKING: Bose sues Apple's Beats over noise-canceling headphone patents. (via @CNBCJosh) $AAPL— CNBC (@CNBC) July 25, 2014 Bose is suing Beats over noise-canceling technology patents used in headphones, according to CNBC. Patent search site PriorSmart.com appears to have a list…

| Read more »
09:42
Judge Cote Calls Apple Ebook Settlement Unfair to...

Judge Denise Cote, the Federal Judge who ruled Apple orchestrated a conspiracy with publishers to drive up the price of books, is concerned that the settlement the iPhone and iPad maker agreed to in a related class action lawsuit will be unfair to consumers. Apple agreed to pay US$400 million in the settlement, but that number drops to $50 million plus attorney fees if the Appeals Court sends the case back for further proceedings.The Mac Observer Spin: Both Apple and the states found the settlement terms reasonable, so maybe Judge Cote is being a little over critical there. The stipulation that Apple doesn't have to pay interest during the Appeals process seems like something she's justified in complaining about.

| Read more »
09:26
iLounge Game Spotlight: Modern Combat 5: Blackout

Modern Combat 5: Blackout ($7) is one of the most high-profile iOS games to be released this year. Blackout is the latest first-person shooter in Gameloft’s Call of Duty-esque series, and this time around, there are no in-app purchases to be found. However, an…

| Read more »
09:15
TMO Daily Observations: 2014-07-25

Just because an analyst says Apple could be doomed doesn't mean we'll all be using Android smartphones in three years. Bryan Chaffin and Kelly Guimont join Jeff Gamet dissect what Noster Capital's Pedro de Noronha really meant when he said Apple could be obsolete in three years, plus they look at Judge Denise Cote's comments on Apple's ebook price fixing class action lawsuit settlement.

| Read more »
06:24
comiXology Intros DRM-free Digital Comic Backups

Amazon's digital comicbook distribution company comiXology announced on Thursday that is is now offering customers DRM-free copies of the comics they buy for backup. Users can download PDF and CBZ versions of the comics they have already purchased, although not every comic sold is available.The Mac Observer Spin: Offering downloadable files for backup is great. What's even greater is that they're DRM-free so you can read your comics on any device that has a PDF or CBZ-compatible reader app.

| Read more »
04:45
OS X: Repair Home Folder Permissions

For todayâs Quick Tip, weâre going to cover a little-known feature of OS X Recovery-repairing your Home folder permissions. If your Documents folder wonât let you edit files or an application is telling you that you donât have permission to save something to your Desktop, then this tip should be right up your alley.

| Read more »

Thursday July 24

16:48
Hedge Fund: ‘Apple Might Become Obsolete in 2-3...

Pedro de Noronha, managing partner at hedge fund Noster Capital, ain't got no truck with these newfangled tech companies, including Apple. The problem, he said, is that you don't know where they'll be in 5 to 10 years. Even Apple, according to him, could be "obsolete in two to three years."

| Read more »
13:40
MGG 512: Two Zero Zero Hexes Your Favorite Geeks

Celebrating their 200th show (in hexadecimal, anyway!), your two favorite geeks dig deep this week to help solve issues regarding remote management, slow networks, the Finder and much more. That, and listen in as both John and Dave get hexed! Download today, press play, and enjoy!

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12:41
TwistedWave Audio Recorder and Editor for Mac: $20

We have a deal on an audio recorder and editor for your Mac called TwistedWave. You might remember Mark Greentree's review of the iOS version for TMO in 2012 where it got 4 stars. TwistedWave supports a huge amount of file formats, including WAV, AIFF, CAF, MP2, MP3, Mpeg4/AAC, ALAC, FLAC, Ogg/Vorbis, WavPack, Wave64, AU, SD2, and WMA. it can detect silence, supports batch processing of multiple files, and includes multichannel editing, as well as mastering features. It's priced at $59, but through our deal you can get it for $20.

| Read more »
11:47
Apple’s Yosemite Beta: Don’t Use TRIM with SSD

For those who are succeeding where others have failed at getting their hands on the public beta of Yosemite, make sure you disable TRIM before installing on a 3rd party solid state drives (SSDs). Users are reporting that having TRIM controls enabled will resort in your Mac not booting up.The Mac Observer Spin: If this post doesn't make sense, maybe hold off on installing the beta for now.

| Read more »
10:50
Apps of the Week: ShipAntics, Modern Combat 5, This...

New Apps Matter ($2) — Photo app maker Pixite is back with Matter, a new app that allows users to add 3D effects to photos. Those effects come in the form of various 3D objects — users have the ability to change the traits…

| Read more »
10:42
Apple’s Yosemite Beta Site Conks Out Over Heavy...

If you're planning on downloading Apple's just released public beta of OS X Yosemite, think again. The public beta site crashed thanks to heavy traffic only hours after the beta was released and eventually Apple replaced the error users saw with its familiar "We'll be back" image.The Mac Observer Spin: It's as if millions of voices cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced.

| Read more »
10:13
TMO Daily Observations: 2014-07-24

Word on the street says Apple is teaming up with Visa and other transaction processing companies to turn the iPhone 6 into your new digital wallet. Bryan Chaffin, Dave Hamilton and Kelly Guimont look at the prospect of using our iPhones as credit cards, and they talk about Apple's just released public beta of OS X Yosemite, too.

| Read more »
09:45
Sweet Design: the CODE Donut Bluetooth Speaker

Taotronics CODE Donut Bluetooth 3.0 portable battery powered speaker should be a hit with teens and tweens because it is colorful, unique, and has satisfactory sound with good bass. It includes a microphone, and it allows the user to take phone calls when paired with an iPhone.

| Read more »
08:35
Apple Releases OS X Yosemite Public Beta

As promised, Apple released a public beta of OS X Yosemite on Thursday. The beta gives Mac users the opportunity to participate in the testing process, and get a taste of what's in store, before the new operating system officially ships this fall.The Mac Observer Spin: Getting early access to OS X Yosemite will be great, but don't forget it's beta software. Things will be broken and features will be missing. Don't expect it to perform like a final shipping product.

| Read more »
 
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