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Tag: scitech

Apples and Oranges: Amazon moves into the Apple TV space

Those of us who have been waiting for an Amazon Prime channel to finally show up on their Apple TV now have an explanation as to why it never arrived. Today Amazon introduced FireTV (US $99), an Amazon set-top box that seems perfectly situated to compete with Apple TV. Amazon cited a 350% growth...

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Orderly: To do lists with lots of gestures

Orderly (US$0.99) is exactly the kind of app that I normally don't write about in posts. It's a good example of a somewhat okay app that was released too early without proper testing and development, and lacking in any number of killer features. Despite my reservations, I was encouraged to write...

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Why what you think about that "new category" thing may be all wrong

Spectacle. We love it. That moment when technology changes and our minds are blown. It's easy to forget that many "one more thing" things were actually pretty boring: the iPod mini, Safari for Windows, the Power Mac G5. Our current obsession with "new categories" derives from the heroin-like...

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iOS 7.1's new shift key icons are rad

"What's the matter with the shift key icon, honey? It's still Rock & Roll to me" -- Surprisingly not actual lyrics by Billy Joel Today, as 7.1 rolled in, major complainage could be heard echoing through the TUAW back channels. "OMG," the afflicted cried, "The world is at an end -- Apple...

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Transformer-like Dock-It Pro provides quirky iPad keyboard case

To call the Dock-It Pro (US$159) quirky is to understate the oddness of this product. This Parle Innovation device offers a flip-case that enables users to treat their iPad as either a mini laptop or a very, very heavy tablet. A well-designed keyboard represents its strongest feature, but the...

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BroApp coming to iOS amidst firestorm of opinion

BroApp, a US$1.99 Android app that sends automated texts to friends, partners, and family is heading soon to iOS. The app acts on your behalf as a kind of techno-Cyrano. It messages your recipient with a fortune cookie of attention. "Thinking of you." "Can't wait to see you." "Good morning! I hope...

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AnyFont helps you configure custom fonts for all your iOS applications

AnyFont (US$1.99) enables you to add custom True Type and Open Type fonts to your iOS device for use in any application. When I first heard about this app, I was curious. How could an app like this "break sandboxing," the security feature that keeps each app separate and safe? I contact the...

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Poll: Tim Cook promises new product categories

The Wall Street Journal recently interviewed Tim Cook, who revealed "that Apple plans to enter a new category this year." "There will be new categories. We're not ready to talk about it, but we're working on some really great stuff," Mr. Cook said. When asked whether a new product category could...

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All I want for WWDC is...nothing

February may seem early to you to be strategizing about Apple WWDC announcements. For tech writers, it's crunch time. To plan books, posts, and other coverage, you try to anticipate how big a change is coming up and what areas will be affected. For example, Victor was asking me the other day what...

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Talking to Siri: The conversationalist

Siri can do many things but unlike ELIZA it's not built for general conversation. Make sure you ask Siri, "Tell me about ELIZA" to learn more. Steven Sande and Erica Sadun have been working on the third edition of Talking to Siri, the book that covers all the ins and outs of everyone's favorite...

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Talking to Siri: Can you sing a few bars?

From now on Siri, I'll call you "a taxi." OK? Needless to say, Siri recognizes that a balanced diet does not consist of a Budweiser in each hand. Friends don't let friends drive drunk -- and Siri is the best virtual friend you'll ever have in your pocket. Steven Sande and Erica Sadun have been...

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Talking to Siri: If my head weren't attached, I'd forget that too

A drunk man is intently searching the ground beneath a brightly glowing lamp post when an officer approaches him and asks, "Sir, what are you trying to find?" "I lost my keys," he replies. "Did you lose them near here?" the officer asks. "I lost them somewhere across the street," he says, "but the...

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This is how in-app purchases should be handled

Ever since the ability to include in-app purchases was added to the App Store, the idea has divided gamers. On one side you have customers who prefer the traditional manner of purchasing a game -- pay upfront, and you have access to whatever the game has to offer -- while others see no problem in...

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Talking to Siri: Drill bits and bobs

How can you tell if your love is true? A plumb line, of course! Speaking of which, two antennae got married. The wedding was boring, but the reception was outstanding. And did you hear about the atom who lost an electron? When asked, "Are you sure?" it replied, "I'm positive!" Steven Sande and...

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Here's a quick way to send a file to a screen-shared desktop

I've been doing a lot of Mac development recently. This means I often need to screen share to my headless OS X Mountain Lion system for testing. This morning, I was updating my folderol app to add features for folder tagging. I had to make sure that those Mavericks-only features wouldn't show up...

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