April 22, 2014

Link: Apple Opens OS X Betas to Non-Developers ☍

Apple now allows anyone with an Apple ID to try out the latest betas of OS X and offer feedback. I think this could allow Apple to find and fix problems sooner than later, but also it seems that the rumors are more focused around iOS betas, so why not? For those keeping track at home, the last time there was a public beta offered by Apple, it was the OS X Public Beta.

The OS X Beta Seed Program gives users the opportunity to run pre-release software. Test-drive beta software and provide quality and usability feedback that will help make OS X even better.

Join the OS X Beta Seed Program and accept the Beta Seed and Confidentiality Agreement. Apple will provide a Beta Access Utility for your Mac, which gives you access to pre-release versions of OS X in the Mac App Store Updates panel.

Review: Overmacs PhotoSweeper

PhotoSweeperIf you’re like me, your digital photo library may span years—even decades. Although programs like iPhoto, Aperture, and Lightroom try to help with keeping photos organized, multiple cameras types, accidental extra imports, and even simple file duplications are bound to happen. While some tools are included in these programs for sorting and finding duplicates, PhotoSweeper by Overmacs is a $10 utility that hopes to make the process even easier…

“There are some ideas we want every company to copy.”

April 21, 2014

Link: Better ☍

Apple updated their Environmental Responsibility page and not only does it demonstrate many of the important points well, there’s an excellent video explaining some of these philosophies narrated by Apple CEO Tim Cook himself.

April 18, 2014

Link: Nike Fires FuelBand Team, Might Stop Making Hardware? ☍

Nick Statt for CNET:

Nike is gearing up to shutter its wearable-hardware efforts, and the sportswear company this week fired the majority of the team responsible for the development of its FuelBand fitness tracker, a person familiar with the matter told CNET…

…The shoemaker isn’t throwing in the towel on technology. Rather, it’s turning away from hardware and realigning its focus exclusively on fitness and athletic software, a strategic shift that would still benefit the company in the long run, analysts said.

If it’s me reading the signs (and others have already suggested it), Nike’s decision to focus on software really opens to door for someone else to get involved in these kind of devices, especially when you consider who is on the board. Then again, maybe people really aren’t getting excited about wearables when smartphones can handle these things and Nike is making a smart exit.

Update: Re/code is reporting that Nike is denying the report about the shutdown, but that there were a few layoffs.

Article: Tinkering with Old PCs, Chromium OS, and OS X

In my spare time over the last week, I spent more time messing with a pair of older PCs than I would care to admit. Although I prefer Apple’s products, I do spend a fair amount of time with Windows at work, and don’t really waste a lot of time or energy complaining about Windows or PC hardware. That being said, we had a couple of old machines laying around—HP Compaq (yes, both brands are present) 6710b and nc6320 laptops to be exact—they were sold around 2006 and 2007 primarily to business customers…

April 17, 2014

Patent Pending: 34: Beautiful Convictions ☍

In the latest episode of Patent Pending, Matt and I talk about Dropbox and privacy, Heartbleed, and much more…

April 16, 2014

Link: Seagate’s LaCie Admits to Yearlong Breach of Customer Card Data ☍

Arik Hesseldahl for Re/code:

LaCie, the French hard drive company, admitted yesterday that it has suffered a significant breach of its e-commerce systems lasting nearly a year.

The company posted a notification to customers on its site yesterday saying that agents from the FBI had notified that someone had used malware to penetrate its systems and gain access to the credit card information of people buying hard drives on the site. The site has temporarily stopped taking orders.

First word of a possible attack came on March 17 when security blogger Brian Krebs published evidence that the site was among about four dozen that had been compromised by way of a flaw in ColdFusion, a Web application development platform from the software company Adobe.

Is it just me, or does it seem like credit card information being stolen is becoming more common, or at least more high-profile?