DigitalOutbox Episode 274

Chris and Ian discuss Mac Security, Android N and PC Gaming

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DigitalOutbox Episode 254

Chris and Ian discuss Windows 10, Uber and Xbox

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DigitalOutbox Episode 195

DigitalOutbox Episode 195
DigitalOutbox Episode 195 – Google sells Motorola, Facebooks Paper and 30 years of Mac

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0:54 – Facebook Paper
5:00 – Tech Financials
10:59 – Samsung to open more than 60 dedicated stores across Europe with Carphone Warehouse
12:28 – Samsung And Google Bury The Apple Hatchet, Sign 10-Year Patent Agreement
14:38 – Lenovo To Buy Motorola Mobility From Google For About $3B
17:16 – Google buys UK artificial intelligence start-up DeepMind
19:57 – Google brings Chrome apps to Android and iOS, lets developers submit to Google Play and Apples App Store
22:40 – Microsoft changes SkyDrive name to OneDrive, six months after losing court battle to BSkyB
23:38 – Microsoft testing Windows 8.1 update that hides tile interface by default
25:07 – The NSA is reportedly scouring Angry Birds and other apps for user data
26:31 – UK government tackles wrongly-blocked websites
29:38 – Government websites on rise again despite cull
33:07 – 30 Years of Mac

Sticky Notifications

It’s 2012 yet how many of you still have them? How many monitors have a few dotted around them? Bloody post-it notes. Stop it. Stop using them and instead buy Sticky Notifications for the Mac. This simple app that only costs $3 allows you to create a reminder that will stay displayed on the screen until dismissed.

Running from the menubar or called up via a recordable shortcut you are given a simple form for leaving a reminder.

Sticky Notification

Once the reminder is created it will then be displayed on the notification tool of your choice. In Mountain Lion it will be displayed using Notification Center or Growl, under Lion you only get Growl as a choice. Either way the notification will stay on display until it’s dismissed.

No excuse now

There’s a couple of nice features that help make the app easy to use. Even though it’s been out for less than a fortnight it has had three updates which has added a System Service which makes it easy to create a Sticky Notification from any selected text. You can also create a notification via the app’s own URL scheme. This makes creating a sticky from Alfred simple to do. Final neat feature is that if the note contains a URL, clicking anywhere on the reminder will launch the URL in the default browser. Perfect for those times when you need to visit a website but are in the middle of something else.

The app can be bought on the Mac App Store or on the Instinctive Code website and I’d recommend buying direct. The App Store version has only just appeared at version 1.0. The developer, Matt Gemmell, has released three updates since the initial release meaning the App store version is missing a few features. This isn’t the developers fault but does highlight one of the many issues with buying via the App Store.

I also have to recommend subscribing to the personal blog of Matt Gemmell – it’s a must read if you are a developer, designer or just interested in the tech community. Well written posts with a healthy dose of humour.

Mac Bundles

We highlighted a couple of Mac Bundles on the podcast this week and as they are available for a limited time only I thought it best to get a quick post on what I think are the stand out items from each.

First up is the MacUpdate June bundle which features 11 apps for $49.99. Standout applications in this bundle are Parallels Desktop 7, ScreenFlow 3, BusyCal and Civilization V. The links above are affiliate links so buying via that link will give DigitalOutbox a small kickback as well which helps cover the cost of running the podcast and website. Overall you save $400 when comparing the bundle and individual application price so it’s a great offer but it only has another 12 days to run so get moving.

If you want to run a virtual machine on your Mac, Parallels Desktop 7 is one of the premier titles that will allow you to run Windows and Mac titles side by side without restarting your operating system. ScreenFlow is a great screen video capture tool and in my opinion the best available on the Mac. You can easily capture your screen content as well as that from the camera, mic and any other sound input. It’s easy to create a full screencast and then output the video to a variety of formats. If you are in the market for either Parallels or ScreenFlow it’s better to buy them via the bundle deal as it will save you money on just the single title.

Civilization V needs little introduction. It’s the latest version of the famous Sid Meier game and has garnered great reviews over the last year. The final title I’d highlight is BusyCal, a great calendar replacement that means you no longer need to look at the faux leather and paper tear off look that Apple introduced with Lion but also benefits from a number of advanced features not seen in the default Calendar app on OSX. BusyCal is only available to the first 15,000 bundle purchases and with 12,000 already sold there’s not much time left to purchase.

The second bundle worth highlighting is from ProductiveMacs. Similar to the MacUpdate bundle, this time it’s $39.999 for eight applications. The highlights in this bundle are RapidWeaver, DEVONthink, Printopia and Mailtags. Again the link above is an affiliate link so if you are interested in buying, please use the link above. Also a big thanks to Tam for pointing out this bundle. This bundle has slightly less time to run with only 10 days remaining.

RapidWeaver is an easy to use tool for creating and publishing websites. It follows web standards, has good plugin and theme support and makes building a website as easy as creating a document. DEVONthink Personal is a digital filing cabinet. Store anything in DEVONthink from a variety of different sources with good search and export options. If you were considering either of these applications, buying via he bundle will save you some cash while delivering another 7 titles.

Printopia makes it easy to rint from your iOS device to any printer. It also allows you to print to a PDF or Evernote via your iOS device. Finally MailTags is great for those that get lots of e-mail. It allows you to tag your mail via a variety of extra metadata to help you sort, retrieve and stay on top of mail. Very handy.

Hopefully you’ll find something to like in one of these bundles while saving a bit of cash and introducing some extra tools.

SCOtutor for Mac

SCOtutor for Mac is a great training video from Don McAllister, the man behind ScreenCasts Online. It’s a tutorial specifically written for users who are new to the Mac. With so many people picking up iPad’s there is a growing number of users who are also moving to Macs that have spent years using pc’s with Windows installed. This app is great for those users as it takes you through many basics and will get them up to speed in no time.

SCOtutor for Mac

There are over 150 minutes in the tutorial covering the following main topics:

• Introduction to the Mac
• Exploring the OS X Desktop
• Applications and your Mac
• Introduction to the Finder
• Auto Save & Versions
• Introduction to Apple Mail
• Managing Application Windows
• Printing and Scanning
• Sharing with the Mac
• Using the Safari Web Browser
• Users, Accounts & Parental Controls
• Time Machine

The application itself is easy to use and the video playback deserves a mention as you can easily jump between chapters, playback at different speeds and subtitle support in a number of languages. The app will also resume from where you left off previously so there is no need to worry about pausing mid tutorial.

The best bit isn’t the app though. Don really knows how to pass on information in a clear and concise manner without confusing the listener. I also think his voice is easy to listen too and takes away the pain of learning – it’s also great to hear a British voice in a sea of American tutorials. As an experiment Don has made this app free for a limited time as well as the SCOtutor for Mac iOS application which is actually a better option in my opinion as you can run the tutorials on the iPad allowing you to follow along on the Mac. However once the free offer is finished I’d still have no hesitation in recommending SCOtutor for Mac as it is a great application for newcomers to the Mac.