So the big cat got out of the bag yesterday — Mountain Lion should now be on your Mac, or you should be getting it very soon if you haven’t already. I’ve been using it since last night, and it’s been fantastic so far.
Of course, like all big OS X releases, there are some fantastic reviews of the OS that you absolutely should read.
MacStories Features: OS X Mountain Lion: The team at MacStories are some of my favorite writers all around in terms of Apple coverage. And here is their first eBook, which is dedicated to everything that you need to know about Mountain Lion! I have a copy, and have dived in to it today, and love what I am reading so far. Make sure to check it out and get a copy for yourself — it’s only $6.99, and 30% of the proceeds go towards The American Cancer Society.
If you don’t have time to read every Mountain Lion review or guide out there, that’s okay — make it these two.
It’s another week, which means more apps. There hasn’t been too much that aren’t games, but there are still some goodies to look at. Check out what I’ve been trying out lately…
Checkmark: This is like Reminders Pro. If you are setting up geofence reminders often, then this is definitely the best way to do it. Set up your most frequently visited locations, and then add tasks to them and be reminded when you arrive or depart from the area. The reminder can even be set to go off after a delay, which you can’t do in Apple’s Reminders app. Checkmark even supports normal time-based reminders, so you have all of your bases covered. The app looks gorgeous as well.
Scratch — Your Quick-Input Notepad: This is like Drafts, except with a prettier face. The app is incredibly fast to start up, and it features a keyboard extension with common punctuation marks and Markdown formatting to make writing a bit easier. Keep a history of your notes, and export them several ways. While the app certainly has its own set of powerful features, it does lack the third-party developer support that is in Drafts, so there are less export options. But it serves as a great way to quickly jot down anything that you think of.
I love it when there are some great apps that come out during the week. This week is no exception! Some big and fun releases here, so make sure to check them out.
Popsicolor: A truly unique photo editing app — turn your photos into fun and messy watercolors! Get a pic, pick the colors, and choose between three different intensities. Makes some great images that will impress your friends and family.
Chrome: That’s right, it’s finally here! So far I’m enjoying using Google’s browser on my iPhone and iPad. Sync your bookmarks and tabs and omnibox data across devices, go through your tabs in a beautiful and intuitive tab view, go incognito, and more. Definitely pick this one up today if you haven’t already.
Cheddar: Simple and light to-do lists with Markdown support. Sync is incredibly fast, and it’s free to use with the option of upgrading to Plus for unlimited lists (free accounts get two). Give it a try and see how impressive this beautiful little to-do app is.
Matching with Friends: Not usually a fan of Zynga, but this game is a combination of Words with Friends, Bejeweled, and Tetris. It’s fun and challenging, and will definitely get you thinking! Give it a try and challenge me to a game if you’re interested (username: christyxcore).
Unstoppable Fist: Fun old-school arcade game featuring 16-bit graphics and an all-American rocking chiptune soundtrack. Simple gameplay that involves touching touch zones to attack, and you strive to get the highest score possible. Relive the arcade days with this game, right on your iPhone!
What a week it’s been! Some great new releases and stuff I’ve found recently that have become a part of my workflow and playflow. Make sure to check these out.
Launch Center Pro: A much welcomed upgrade over the original Launch Center. Now you can have groups of actions and apps in a grid layout that is much easier to navigate than the list in the previous version. You can also customize the groups with plenty of icons to make it recognizable, and icons for actions can be personalized as well. This is a must-have app for any iPhone. Hopefully an iPad version comes out someday.
Yardsale: This is a beautiful and simple application for finding goods that people are selling in the area. You can also put up your own goods for sale quickly through the app by taking pictures and adding descriptions. You’ll never know what you can end up finding, so give it a try on your iPhone today.
Found: This is a nice utility for your Mac. With it, you can quickly search through your entire Mac for a specific file. The app also includes the ability to link your Dropbox, Google Drive/Docs, and Gmail attachments to search through. By simply pressing your keyboards Control button twice, you bring up a search field — just type, and Found will start finding what you’re looking for. This can also be used as an application launcher, though I still prefer to use Alfred for that. But for file searching, Found is definitely a must-have. And it’s free, so check it out.
People familiar with Apple’s plans tell me that when its new iOS 6 software becomes widely available this fall, podcasts will have their own app, where users will be able to discover, download and play them on mobile devices.
This is great news for podcasters. I’m fairly certain the average user probably doesn’t know that there is a podcast section in the Music app, and may have missed out on a lot of great programming.
Fortunately, with a move like this, more people will discover podcasts and listen to them.
I am curious to see how Apple does a separate podcast app, and I wonder if it will be better than third-party apps such as Instacast and Downcast.
Hopefully more about this will show up in the beta releases of iOS 6.
But it may also wreak havoc on CIOs’ networks and connectivity budgets because, as some analysts have suggested, owners of devices with high-resolution screens might well consume more video and HD video, which would result in higher bandwidth consumption.
Hah! How does one get paid to write this crap?
CORRECTION: An earlier version of this article incorrectly said that the higher resolution Retina displays of the new iPad and forthcoming Macbook Pro computers would increase consumption of network bandwidth, thus slowing performance of corporate networks. Higher resolution screens do not in and of themselves consume more network bandwidth. Some analysts have suggested that owners of devices with high-resolution screens will likely consume more video and HD video, which would result in higher bandwidth consumption. This article has been substantially recast to reflect this change.
Still doesn’t correct the fact that you’re a dumbass to begin with.
For a dramatic example of the improvement, start browsing the web. Bitmapped images (rendered at traditional pixel density) look like utter trash alongside the Retina-quality text that flows around it. Naturally, the images on Apple.com are juiced for Retina.
Just like when the iPhone 4 came out, and the new iPad. It has begun!
So will all web designers begin making their pages look great for the Retina MacBook Pro? Time will tell.
I’d love one, but I’m afraid I may have to stick it out with this cruddy early 2011 15" MacBook Pro for a while.