The Little App Factory’s Evom converts and transfers movies from your computer and the web. On the not-so-good side, in my tests, it converted small QuickTime movies into large QuickTime movies, increasing file size, while decreasing quality. On the good side, Evom makes it a breeze to move movies where they need to go via drag and drop, pull videos from web sites (including Flash videos), and convert videos to different formats. A little buggy (beta) but Apple needs a utility like this for OS X.
There was a time when Netscape Navigator was the only real browser, Mac or Windows PC. Microsoft’s Internet Explorer destroyed Netscape and dominated the browser landscape. Today, most browsers are better at rendering web pages than Internet Explorer. My favorites? Safari for beauty and speed, Firefox for utility bells and whistles.
Earlier this month, Mozilla set Friday to be Firefox 3.5 RC1 Test Day. But RC1, the first release candidate designed to be more stable than the earlier Firefox beta versions, wasn’t finished for the occasion.
Progress continues unabated. If you’re a Windows user, drump Microsoft’s kludgy Internet Explorer. Try Firefox and Safari.
Steve Sprang is the developer and publisher for Brushes, an image and painting application for the iPhone. Until recently, Brushes sold 60 to 70 copies a day at $4.99 each. Even after Apple’s cut, Sprang would net over $200 a day. That all ended when Jorge Colombo used Brushes to create a cover for The New Yorker magazine.
On the web it’s not about location, it’s about getting noticed. Brushes got noticed and Sprang is raking in the money.
Mr. Colombo drew the June 1 cover scene, of a late-night gathering around a 42nd Street hot dog stand, entirely with the iPhone application Brushes. Because of the smears and washes of color required by the inexact medium, it comes off as dreamy, not sharp and technological.
Brushes may be a one hit wonder, but it’s done wonders for Sprang’s bank account. To date, Brushes has sold over 40,000 copies at $4.99 each. That’s a whopping $200,000 in sales. His cut after Apple’s charges is still a healthy $140,000.
Sprang is not an Apple software newbie. He worked at Apple for seven years before leaving to develop applications for the iPhone.
Still, the success of his Brushes application is a surprise, despite some unique features which budding artists and digital media professionals find enticing.
Brushes is a natural media painting application designed from scratch for the iPhone and iPod touch. Featuring an advanced color picker, several realistic brushes, extreme zooming, and a simple yet deep interface, it is a powerful tool for creating original artwork on your mobile device.
Brushes records all of your actions when painting. These actions are stored in a .brushes file which you can download directly from your iPhone or iPod touch via Brushes’ built-in web server.
The ability to record all your actions makes Brushes a standout among iPhone users who collect graphic applications.
Sprang said that Monday was the best day ever for Brushes, which sold 2,700 copies for a one day revenue haul of over $13,000.
What do you get when you mix a popular computing platform with a graphic designers tablet? The iTab. An expensive exercise in futility for geeks with too much time on their hands and too much money in their pockets.
The iTab was constructed by fusing together a Macbook with an Intuos Tablet—Wacom’s mid-level tablet offering—and a repurposed LCD screen.
Still, an iPhone or iPod touch with a larger, much larger screen would be nice—for the privileged few.
Survey of computer use over 12 years from the University of Virgina. The trends are clear. From 1997 to today nearly all students own a computer, notebooks out number desktop PCs, and—drum roll—Mac market share is nearly 40-percent.
Each computing inventory is the compilation of statistics regarding computer ownership; type of computer; operating system; network capability; peripherals; and in recent years, mobile device ownership, too—among incoming first-year students at UVa.
Stunning trend. No wonder Microsoft is so desperate. The red bar is the Mac. Click for a larger version.
The Macalope on Walmart as a potential Mac retailer.
The thought of a premium brand like the Mac being pushed through a high-volume retailer with a logo that looks suspiciously like the end part of the human digestive tract may lead you to some uncomfortable analogies.
Is the iPhone a less premium brand than the Mac?
Andy Ihnatko loves Verizon’s new MiFi. What? You’re still stuck on WiFi?
It’s a black, iPod-sized device with its own battery. It has just one button. A green light comes on when you press it, indicating that the MiFi is powered on. A second green light starts blinking, indicating that it’s working on something. When it goes steady, presto: the MiFi has transformed itself into a bog-standard WiFi base station, capable of supporting up to five users simultaneously.
Think of MiFi as carrying your own mobile WiFi internet connection in your pocket. How easy is it to setup?
Well, I like the MiFi so I’ll merely refer to it as “a colorful experience.” The manual’s instructions were often confusing and at times contradictory.
Daniel Eran Dilger on the ‘safe vs. secure’ issue of Mac vs. Windows. Chicken Little media pundits have been predicting a barrage of malware for Mac users which has never materialized. The semantics of safety and security aside, are Macs, compared to Windows PCs, safe and secure?
The real discrepancy that needs to be pointed out between security on the Mac and Windows is that while Microsoft has recently invested more into building a fancy security infrastructure in the Vista version of Windows that most Windows users don’t actually use, Mac users continue to both feel safer and to actually be safer in the sense of being “free from danger or threat…”
Well said. Are Macs safe and secure? Yes (relatively).
Dwight Silverman on the swirling speculation about a new Microsoft Zune HD or an Apple iPad; both smaller than a netbook, but larger than an iPhone or iPod touch.
In looking at these two developments in parallel - and applying the important caveat that neither are formally announced products, and this is all speculation - we may be seeing the birth of a new category: the coffee-table computer.
There’s some merit to the thought of such a device, which becomes, more or less, an additional device instead of a replacement device.
This would be a device slightly bigger than a true handheld, but smaller than a traditional notebook computer. It sits on your coffee table, available to watch a quick YouTube clip, search for the name of that guest star on House, watch a music video your boyfriend told you about or buy that present for your mom’s birthday, which you almost forgot, you cad!
I use my iPod touch for exactly that purpose.
Time busts out a list of high profile technology failures of the past 10 years. Microsoft is on the list twice; at #1 and #7. No Macs made the list.
To make the list, a product had to be widely recognized and widely available to customers. It had to be aimed at a large global market. It had to be technologically equal to or superior to its competition. It had to be a product or new company that had the possibility of bringing in billions of dollars in revenue based on the sales of similar or competing products. Finally, it had to clearly miss the mark of living up to the potential that its creators expected, and that the public and press were lead to believe was possible.
YouTube is #5. Everyone uses it but Google hasn’t figured out how to make money with YouTube.
With no major viruses or malware outbreaks for Mac OS X, what’s the point of reviewing Mac anti-virus utilities? Scott McNulty:
There have been no major viruses or malware outbreaks for Mac OS X since its introduction in March 2001 (kind of amazing, actually). That excellent track record doesn’t make a strong case for running antivirus software on your Mac.
He calls it a “thankless task.” It is. Thank Apple instead.
Notebooks, even Macs, get stolen. Once it’s gone, what can you do to get it back? Orbicule’s Undercover. Petter Roisland’s MacBook was stolen, but Undercover provided enough information to track down the thieves:
Early this morning I received a new email from Orbicule. This time they received several pictures from the machine. The pictures were in an amazing quality - as if taken with a normal digital camera! They showed four people sitting behind the computer, and there was also a screenshot where one of them wrote his name.
After some research I found out that one of these persons was actually the leading drugs dealer in our region. I quickly gathered the pictures and gave them to the local police… The police called me to say they had received the necessary information from the ISP, and that they recovered my Mac.
On Mac360 we wrote about our Undercover experience a few years ago; here, here, and here.
Have you had an OS X update go bad on your Mac? What did you do? Macworld’s Rob Griffiths had an update that died, leaving his iMac dead in the water; stuck CD, and unable to start up:
Finally, I remembered the old standby, FireWire Target Disk Mode… I have no idea what went wrong the first time, but I’m very thankful FWTDM was there to save me the hassle of reinstalling from scratch.
Yet another good reason to have FireWire on a Mac, though Intel-Macs will start up with an external USB drive. Two words: ‘Back up.’
PC Magazine on the differences between how Apple and Microsoft release a new operating system version. It’s night vs. day.
Microsoft releases the public betas in order to get feedback and telemetry from testers to improve the product. Apple, on the other hand, will drop its new OS down from heaven (or, rather, Cupertino), without soliciting a word of feedback on in-development code from ordinary users.
Known major changes in OS X Leopard: 64-bit kernel, QuickTime X, Grand Central, support for Microsoft Exchange servers. Add to that my prediction of no support for PowerPC Macs, and a new user interface theme, ala iTunes.
Beleaguered Microsoft is feeling the pinch of Mac market share gains. The response? Television commercials featuring laptop hunters who bypass the Mac for less expensive, lower powered PCs.
Apple’s response? Another targeted barrage of Get a Mac commercials which skewer PCs on customer care, viruses, freezes, etc.
Why does the Windows maker bother with poking at the Mac? Check the results of a recent University of California, Davis survey:
Mac ownership has more than tripled, from 7.2 percent in winter 2006 to 23.4 percent in winter 2009.
The trend is clear and Microsoft is desperate. Note the Elimination commercial; ‘I’m a Megan.’