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Archive for January, 2011

The MacBook Air Is Light

January 31st, 2011 No comments

Yes, the MacBook Air is this light. An Apple Store has one being suspended by a helium ballon in their window.

[ TNW ] [ Gizmodo]

Categories: News Tags: ,

Get AppleCare For Less

January 26th, 2011 No comments

For a limited time, you can get AppleCare protection added to your Mac for significantly less than at the Apple Store.

AppleCare extends your existing 1 year warranty to 3 years from the purchase date and includes enhanced support.

For details and pricing check out our AppleCare page.

Categories: News Tags: , ,

Philanthroper – Donate $1 To Charity

January 24th, 2011 No comments

Philanthroper is a website that makes giving back cheap and easy. It’s kind of like a Woot! for charity.

Here’s how it works. Every day Philanthroper chooses a new non-profit to highlight. Through the website you can donate $1, and only $1, to the cause. 99 cents of the donation goes directly to the cause (the other penny goes to the transfer parter for fees.) None of the money goes to Philanthroper.

The website keeps track of your donations displaying graphs that show what type of charities you’ve given to over time.

Today’s charity helps get old computers into the hands of those that could really use them, something that we do as well.

[ Philanthoper ] [ Gizmodo ]

Categories: Commentary Tags: , ,

Alfred Is At Your ⌘

January 20th, 2011 No comments

Alfred is a Mac OS X app makes finding files, launching apps, and searching the web or your computer fast and easy.

This search and launcher app is customizable to include websites you frequent and learns which files or applications are most commonly used and brings them to the top.

So why use this app instead of the built-in Spotlight search that comes with OS X?

The main benefits to Alfred are the speed and customization of the app. If you like keyboard shortcuts and having a cleaner dock, this free app is worth checking out.

[ Alfred in the App Store ] [ Alfred Website ]

Categories: Insights Tags: , , ,

Show Your Phone To Pay At Starbucks

January 19th, 2011 No comments

As of today, you can now pay at any U.S. Starbucks by having the barista scan your iPhone.

This is how it works:

You download the free iOS (or Blackberry) Starbucks app and fill up your Starbucks card with credit (like any other Starbucks card.) The app then displays a barcode that the barista scans and voila!

Not of fan of Starbucks and their new Trenta cup? This kind of technology is so easy to use that I’m sure other chain coffee shops will only be a year or two behind. Will this make paying for your coffee at Peet’s easier? Yes, but they’ll still take their sweet time making it.

[ Starbucks App ]

Categories: News Tags: , , , ,

What Steve Jobs’ Medical Leave Means for Apple Users

January 18th, 2011 No comments

Steve Jobs is taking another medical leave from Apple. While he will remain CEO and be involved in strategic decisions, Tim Cook will be once again taking over the daily reins at Apple.

Love him or loathe him, few deny that Steve’s vision has been responsible for changing the way we use technology for the better. While we hope this break will lead to a more robust recovery, we’re left with the thought of Apple without Steve.

So what does Steve Jobs’ medical leave mean for us?

In the short term (next couple of years) Steve’s departure won’t impact much. Most of Apple’s new products and updates are already in the pipeline. With Steve still being involved in the big decisions, Apple should continue to deliver the kind of products and services we’ve grown to expect from Apple. A strong management team, including equally obsessive and already proven Tim Cook, should keep things moving in the right direction.

The long term impact of Apple without Steve is harder to predict. With the explosive success of Apple in the last ten years, anyone following Steve will be hard pressed to top his performance. Will employee devotion, media attention, and partner relations be as strong without Steve? Probably not.

In technology, you can’t just protect your lead (look at Microsoft,) you need to constantly be at the forefront. Apple has a strong, well defined vision of producing products that work, feel and look great. A lot of the credit for these products is given to Steve, but Ive and others are well versed in this deign philosophy as well.

If Apple stays true to their heritage, as they most likely will, then they should continue to produce the kind of products that we Apple users love. Will there be another Steve Jobs at Apple? Probably not and there really doesn’t need to be. Sometimes the philosophy of one person (trying to avoid religious comparisons here:) is enough to carry forward and grow the vision.

Categories: Commentary Tags: , , ,

Translator Free – Translate Text or Web Pages on the Fly

January 14th, 2011 No comments

Translator Free is a Mac OS X app that makes translating any text or webpage easy.

This free app places a small globe icon in the menu bar that you can then drag any web url or text into for an instant translation.

Translator Free uses Google’s translation engine to display the url in the language of your choice in a new browser window. For translating text from any other source, just select the text like you normaly would to copy and then drag the highlighted text to the menu bar icon. Translate Free will then display the translation in a new text clipboard.

This app is more of a time saver than anything else but it does make the translation process easy.

[ Translate Free ]

Categories: Insights Tags: , , ,

MacBook Pro (2010) Freezes After Waking From Sleep

January 13th, 2011 1 comment

Symptom: After waking your MacBook Pro from sleep, the computer is frozen or the video is badly distorted. You’re unable to control or shutdown the Mac. You have to power off the machine by holding down the power button. After restart, everything appears normal.

Mac Types: MacBook Pro 15″ & 17″

Likely Causes: This kind of freezing or distorted video is usually caused by overheating of the GPU or CPU. While in sleep mode, the Mac should not be running hot so this issue can be kind of tricky to diagnose.

Usually one of two things are happening. 1) The Mac is waking up with the lid closed causing the machine to turn on and potentially overheat, especially if it’s being transported in a laptop bag or case. 2) The graphics firmware is encountering a problem during the wake up sequence and the video components or logic board fail to work properly.

Solutions: The first step of course is to isolate the issue as best you can by fixing permissions, checking for Software Updates, and closing programs before sleep.

Next step would be to check and see if the MacBook is waking from sleep with the lid closed. This can be caused by a faulty sleep sensor which an AASP like MyService can replace.

If the issue persists, the MacBook Pro should go through the ASD tests that Authorized Service Providers like MyService provide. We can check the CPU and GPU under load and look for common errors that may point to defective logic components.

If your MacBook Pro is still covered under your Apple warranty, you should have the problem checked out before the expiration as it usually requires a logic board replacement. You may also want to look into purchasing AppleCare if the issue is intermittent.

MyService offers a free diagnostic that will test these components and offer solutions for repair or replacement.

MacBook Pro AppleCare Service ]

Categories: Insights Tags: , , , ,

Macworld Tickets For $10 at Groupon

January 12th, 2011 No comments

Groupon is currently running a deal on tickets for Macworld 2011. You can get a 3 day pass for $10 (regularly $25.)

Macworld 2011 will take place at the Moscone Center in San Francisco for January 27-29. Since Apple no longer exhibits at Macworld, the wind has definitely been taken out of the Expo’s sails. That said, there are still companies and attendees rowing the boat forward.

If you’re in SF and want to check out the latest and greatest, or just see what kinda swag you can score, checkout Groupon for the deal.

Categories: News Tags: , ,

Keep Your Mac Awake With Caffeine

January 11th, 2011 No comments

Free, simple apps like Caffeine are what make the Mac App Store great.

This little app puts an icon in the menu bar that when clicked, turns off sleep, screen saver and display dimming settings. Click it again and your normal energy saving settings are restored.

This app is handy when watching a full screen video or performing another background task and you don’t want the machine to dim or sleep.

[ Caffeine ]