Author Archives: Nate Swanner


Paper by FiftyThree intros Think Kit for better graphs and charts

Paper by FiftyThree intros Think Kit for better graphs and charts

Paper by FiftyThree is a pretty robust app for those who have artistic flair. For the rest of us, it’s an app for doodling. And for the rest of us, FiftyThree now has a new set of tools named Think Kit, which is aimed at the more linear thinking crowd. The tools allow for the easy drawing of graphs and charts via Paper while still retaining some artistic flair. The backbone of Think Kit is FiftyThree’s Intention Engine, which recognizes your terrible drawings and corrects them into something a bit more visually appealing.

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Verizon buys AOL for $4.4 billion cash

Verizon buys AOL for $4.4 billion cash

Here’s one we didn’t see coming: Verizon has agreed to purchase AOL. The deal, worth $4.4 billion in cash, gives Verizon something they’ve been wanting for some time — an instantly powerful ad network. AOL’s most recent earnings highlight that; 7% year-over-year growth in revenue, all on the back of third party ad sales, which grew 19% versus last year. As the AOL we knew shrinks from us (you can no longer use it for Apple sign-ins, for instance), the ad network kept them relevant enough for an acquisition.

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Self-driving cars have accidents, too — but humans are to blame

Self-driving cars have accidents, too — but humans are to blame

Autonomous cars have many excited, and enough worried about their safety. In a new blog post, Google’s self-driving car lead, Chris Urmson, says while the autonomous vehicles do suffer the occasional fender-bender, it’s not their fault. Those accidents also aren’t much more than paint-swapping incidents; 11 accidents with no injuries to passengers in the car and light damage to the vehicle. Urmson also says none of the accidents autonomous cars were involved in can be attributed to the tech inside.

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Rumor: 5.2-inch LG-made Nexus phone in the pipeline

Rumor: 5.2-inch LG-made Nexus phone in the pipeline

As Summer nears, Nexus rumors are starting to find their way to our doorsteps. We’ve already heard a flagship from Huawei was in the works; how believable that is, we just can’t tell. A new rumor i now finding its way to the light of day, and suggests we’re about to get a second Nexus device from Google. This second device is said to be developed in conjunction with LG, who were responsible for both the Nexus 4 and Nexus 5 handsets.

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Tiny CHIP computer destroys Kickstarter goal in days

Tiny CHIP computer destroys Kickstarter goal in days

On a severe budget, but still want to tinker with DIY gadgetry? CHIP may have recently sparked your interest. If it didn’t, you might be in the minority of tech fans; at $9, CHIP has absolutely demolished its Kickstarter goal of $50,000, earning upwards of $735,000 (at the time we publish this article). As small as it is, CHIP is still a full-fledged computer, and can support peripherals like a keyboard or mouse. CHIP even links to any screen you like, making those tiny set-top computers seem downright massive.

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Google suspends ‘Map Maker’ feature because of pranks

Google suspends ‘Map Maker’ feature because of pranks

Remember the news of a Google Map edit that showed an Android mascot relieving itself on an Apple logo? Well, that — among other low-brow or similarly bad taste edits — have caused Google to suspend edits via Map Maker. The feature, which allows us to make our own edits to maps based on local knowledge, has been sidelined for a limited time, at least to some respect. It seems Google now wants to manually review submissions. This is why we can’t have nice things.

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Real-world Apple Watch testing shows water resistance beyond its rating

Real-world Apple Watch testing shows water resistance beyond its rating

Apple Watch is resilient to water, with Apple saying “Apple Watch is splash and water resistant but not waterproof.” With an IPX7 rating, Apple Watch can logistically handle submersion up to one meter for 30 minutes. According to the official ratings scale, IPX7 makes submersion beyond that (either in depth or duration) a problem. Real world stats may prove otherwise; over the weekend, some YouTube videos were posted, highlighting the Apple Watch’s water durability, and it seems to — at least in one instance — test well above IPX7.

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Report: Apple sourcing new display tech for incoming iPad

Report: Apple sourcing new display tech for incoming iPad

A few days ago, Apple reportedly asked major display manufacturers including LG, Samsung, and Japan Display to supply them with a production-ready version of the display for their next iPad. This newest display will reportedly use nanowires made of silver under the cover glass. This technology is said to both increase touch sensitivity and decrease cost (for Apple, not us). According to the report, this new display tech may also be outfit with Sapphire glass, reducing thickness and weight of the new iPad.

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NYT Now goes free for iOS, adds impressive features

NYT Now goes free for iOS, adds impressive features

Paywalls are kind of terrible in the eyes of most. It’s success is largely debatable, but some larger news entities choose to shelter online content behind a curtain rather than open it up to all in favor of monetization via advertising. The New York Times was one of those who subscribed (pun intended) to the paywall theory, but may be tearing themselves from it. Their latest update to NYT Now, their iOS app, eschews the paywall altogether, letting us all read until the battery on our iPhone dies.

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True Detective season 2 will offer up ‘uncanny reality’

True Detective season 2 will offer up ‘uncanny reality’

With HBO’s True Detective, we know very little until we know it all. The show and its creators have done a marvelous job of shrouding the show in mystery, seeding tidbits of info as they wish. Season one of the show was wrought with occult mysticism and dangerously taboo storylines. Season two won’t have such narratives, but it promises to be intriguing nonetheless. A recent teaser for season two of True Detective gave us a look at the actors involved, and now we know more about what they won’t be up to.

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Apple may refresh iTunes radio, offer free trial for streaming

Apple may refresh iTunes radio, offer free trial for streaming

While we wait for the assumed launch of the service, Apple’s streaming ambitions are being widely rumored. Last we heard, Apple was muscling music labels to disavow themselves of ‘freemium’ streaming. Now we get a better idea of why that might be; Apple wants to offer a free trial and limited free listening, according to a new report. Apple is also said to be leaning toward a curated radio service, which is why they are hiring away big-name talent from terrestrial radio.

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Fitbit’s IPO to help them keep pace with Apple, Jawbone

Fitbit’s IPO to help them keep pace with Apple, Jawbone

Fitbit is probably never going to command the wearable space. Even if their hardware is better than Jawbone’s (and it is), Fitbit now has Apple Watch, Microsoft, and Android Wear to contend with. Fitbit also doesn’t seem interested in playing nice with Apple, now the largest company in the wearable space. Fitbit doesn’t work with Apple’s HealthKit, and Apple has stopped selling Fitbit in their company stores. In filing for their IPO, Fitbit laid out some strategic plans, and they may have a lot to do with Jawbone and Apple.

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