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Podcast #279





Comments on iLife '11: GarageBand and Movie; iOS 4.2, apps iPads and iPhones; changes in news delivery; TSA scanners; and other news and comments


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flyer You may have already found this if you are an iOS device owner, but iOS 4.2 was released Monday in the US (I got it Tuesday morning). This week I am on the final part of my look at the latest iLife, with comments on iLife itself, GarageBand and iMovie.


Comments on iLife '11: GarageBand and Movie


I did a quick trailer a couple of weeks ago and put it online for students, as I used some of their presentations, but the international students on the same trip as me to Singapore also made a video that they put on Facebook using the same techniques with the Trailer output. Quick and dirty, but it looks good.


My plan to buy an iPad in Singapore was thwarted by the credit card having so much frozen by the hotel that I was done for. And I was not the only one: others in the party also had intended purchases declined.

iOs 4.2.1 is with us now and there are loads of new features. A lot of sites had the information that Find my . . . whatever it is . . . for the latest devices only is now free and does not need Mobile Me. As of this time I do not know how we could track a lost device unless we had another or access to Mobile Me.

As there is so much in the update, and I also have so much news this week, I am going to hand you over to Rene Ritchie on TiPb who has a video on this and some other links available. You can get to that via the page that goes with this podcast.


flyer 2 The update came down as we were told overnight for me, and there were also a number of other updates, such as to the Find my iPhone App I use as well as the iWork components for the iPad. Although there are changes for the iPhone and iPod touch, this is really a leap forward for the iPad and there should be a lot of happy users out there this morning. I just wish I were one of them. Joshua Topolsky on Endgadget for example says, it feels like a brand new day.

There was also a release of an update for AppleTV which is now at version 4.1. Both that one and iOS 4.2 include some security fixes.


When I finally got online (I have more on this later) I connected the iPhone and iTunes lied. It told me the software was up to date. I pressed the button and the update appeared. I tend to download this separately and then install once it is all there, to avoid tears should the connection fail. Anyone who lives here would take precautions like this and this was more in my mind Tuesday. The download was 624.3MB, so I had a shower while it was all going on. After, I restarted the iPhone by holding down the home and off buttons until the Apple icon appeared. Then we updated.

Despite checking earlier and downloading a couple, I saw that two more apps had been updated, so I downloaded them and had a look at the upgraded iPhone. Not much was really evident at the beginning, except that the Voice Memos app had changed from its shiny red to a flat blue icon. It is going to take me a while to look round this and check with others online.

I am told by local Twitter user Daveoli that there are now two Thai keyboards for the iPad: Thai and Thai Pattachote. At last. I am grateful to him for the confirmation and the two images he sent.

iPad keyboard iPad keyboard


I moan a lot about the lack of availability of the iPad, but I was also reminded that several European countries do not have this yet; and I don't mean the Slavic countries, which always seem to be down the list.

I have wondered how much the release of the iPad is linked to iOS 4.2 and asked in one of the iStudio shops this weekend. I got the feeling of a suppressed excitement when the lady answered me, but all she would say was, Soon".

As part of this coming soon theme, I saw on Monday that iStudio was showing a link to a course for developers of iPhone and iPad apps for just under 10,000 baht. Some of it was in Thai, but there are English sections at the bottom. The link to the course information is on the page that goes with this podcast.


We also begin to hear stories about an iPad 2 that could be with us next spring with a new design and new processes for manufacture. I haven't got version 1 yet. One of the rumours connected to the 2.0 tale suggests that it could be CDMA-capable; and I hear locally that the Hutch CDMA services may be taken over by True, sooner rather than later.


Singapore And another iOS development rumour had Apple selling iPhones with embedded SIMs which upset European carriers no end. We later heard that this was just an idea floated, but that the reaction has pretty much sunk it. At least for now.


We have noticed a lot of new apps appearing from what were traditionally print media. This weekend for example, Life -- an iconic publication for its thousands of first-class photos over the years -- put out an iPad-only app, while the Economist which has a good online presence, now has an app for iPad and iPhone. I reviewed this over the weekend.

Another excellent example of the ways in which the devices will change consumption of media is a Peter rabbit pop-up book (imagine that, pop up on a flat screen). Dave Winograd has a close and appreciative look a this.


And then the rumours began to appear about an imminent app produced by a tie-up between Apple and NewsCorp. We vaguely remember that Steve visited their New York offices when the iPad forst appeared. This may be a result of that. Stories abound and it looks like a newspaper for tablets only, called The Daily. Rene Ritchie is one of several online correspondents that has this. Let me confirm that "tablets only" comment: not just the iPad, although that is clearly the apple of Steve Jobs' eye, but for any tablet including, say, the Samsung Galaxy. A report I read later suggested the price would be at Steve Jobs' magic 99c per week.

We also read a report from John Gruber who discusses this development and suggests that a new type of revolving subscription system would be included.


Guess And then the vaguest whisper at the weekend that the Bangkok Post is to suffer a major reorganisation taking effect at new year. The medium of print is seing a worldwide decline and those who do not respond will fade away. I guess though, even online publications need people to write the articles: it is the income system that will need the biggest revisions.


As well as the Samsung and iPad there are other companies aiming to produce tablet computers and on Tuesday morning when I woke up, I burst out laughing when I saw a headline on the iPhone from MacDaily News, who were repeating the words of Ars technica on an Android-equipped tablet: "Don’t buy this; run screaming in the other direction."

Needless to say, when I finally got online, that was one of my reads. Jacqui Cheng actually titles the article, "Worst gadget ever? Ars reviews a $99 Android tablet" which is as bad as the MDN selected quote, without the humour. It is about the Maylong M-150: a device that Walgreens are selling, although for how long, is not clear. M150? Isn't there an energy drink in Thailand with that name?

I will not spoil your enjoyment: read the article. The link is on the page that goes with this podcast.


My enjoyment of Tuesday morning was spoiled when I found I had no internet. I did all the tricks of checking, restarting router, standing on one leg, etc., but in the end, phoned True. We got through to a polite young man who seemed to know what he was talking about although had to check a couple of times on his OS X data. Fair enough, although maybe some of that was not up to date as a couple of the terms he asked about were not used in the 10.6. No matter. He went through the whole system check and asked me to enter new DNS numbers. They were what I had used before, but OS X now uses the router. No matter. While he went and checked something else, I restarted the router for the 3rd time and the internet was revived.


Have a look at iAds. Although some companies decided to move away intiallly, we may find that (looking at the samples here) that the vivid and instant nature of what can be done, will soon bring them back. I especially like the Cambell's Soups offering as this is an iconic company (particularly after the Andy Warhol painting) that is keeping abreast of the times.


Some notes on the iOS update, especially concerning missing music. If you press the iPod icon on your iPhone and nothing is shown as being there, just a sync may bring it all back. For some it may need you to connect, play a tune and then sync. Mine was OK but then I synced after the update to make sure.


On Tuesday night we read on AppleInsider that there are not enough iPads in the world -- well we knew that. So Foxconn ar eramping up production and there are to be another 10,000 per day produced.


On TiPB, Allyson Kazmucha reminds us of a simple feature on iOS that enables us to email or MMS a VCF card from our devices. It is at the bottom of the panel of an individual's details in Contacts, near Facetime on the iPhone and tapping that brings up sending options (only the iPhone has MMS of course). I did a test because I use my contact details for storing other information and was pleased to see that the VCF card was limited to contact details (phone, email) and did not include that extra data.

Post headline Not sure if this was an error or deliberate, but on Monday night the Post was referring to the People's Alliance Against Democracy on its main page on the web. Just to confirm that was so, I took a screen shot.


Some of you may remember that last January I did an article on 2D barcodes: there is one at the bottom of each of my web pages now.

These are now beginning to appear more often: for example the Post uses these most days in its print edition to take readers to more images online; and we often see advertisements in the Post's pages with these embedded. I have them on my business cards, and I also used them on pages that went out from the conference I went to in Singapore. The surprise to me was that most of the people I spoke to who work in the Lion City were unaware of these; and so was one manager from the London branch, who promptly downloaded one of the reader apps. Nice to be ahead sometimes.


There have been several stories on the body scanners now being used in the US. Aaron Greenspan says, if you decline (and it is sometimes apparently hard as some of the TSA operatives do not seem to know the rules) a pat down will certainly follow. This is certainly invasive as men and women will probably have their private parts touched.

One such case involved a stewardess who had a prosthetic device after breast cancer and was told to remove it: a gross violation of privacy in my view, especially as it was a woman who conducted the body search and few women are unaware of the cancer or its effects.

and the people who work these machines are apparently not allowed to wear those badges that detect the amount of radiation, unlike the technicians who work in X-Ray departments, for example.

Ira Flatlow, declined to take the scan as like many of us (me too with the number of bone breaks and other problems I have had over the years -- mostly of my own making) we will already have received a high dosage.


Mer Lion And another traveller with a bag that collects urine was left humiliated by the amateur and insensitive pat-down that two agents gave him.

We heard on Sunday that President Obama was asking officials to look for less intrusive ways to check passengers, which I translate as meaning they continue for the time being.

But it may be too late for public opinion as fliers are simply fed up with the amount of scrutiny -- increasingly invasive over the years -- and the blank-faced attitudes of the TSA staff who enforce (with force being the operative word). The scanners may be the tipping point.

And it is certainly hypocritical of Republicans like Bobby Jindal to criticise Obama as it is their lot under Bush and Cheney who started the extra security panic in the first place; and in presenting their ideas to the higher ups, those same security authorities now in place of course want to perpetuate their jobs and use the best methods technically available, but opposing ideas (such as invasive, privacy and the like) are not technical and hint at the emotive: how do you prove that. The ideal way of course in terms of security, would be for all fliers to strip off and be put to sleep for the flight duration.


I am afraid this reached a low when we hear of a child being body searched and there is a video online of this and the guy who made the video was treated rudely as well. However when I went to find this again, using the search words, "child scanned+body search" I was alarmed to find a Google page full of examples. This has reached an unacceptable level of obtrusiveness, not helped by insensitive operatives.

To cap it all, Americans are being asked to opt out on the day that traditionally has most travelers because of the total disgust many feel for this.


And a final note. This week's podcast, is number 279 and that was my number when I was policeman. I finished after 10 years and then went to university.


Late News

With The Daily -- the tablet newspaper venture between Apple and NewsCorp due to launch in December, we hear that the iOS 4.3 update is also due then and this would likely have an new feature for the planned rolling subscriptions.


Google



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