A New Tesla

Justin Hyde:

Tesla Motors went the simple route for its first two models, with the Model S for sedan, and Model X for crossover. Today, Tesla’s Elon Musk revealed that the third, smaller sedan Tesla plans next will be called the Model 3 — and by doing so, will still keep an inside joke alive.

The inside joke?

Musk has long said that after naming the S and the X, the next model Tesla built should be called the Model E so that the lineup would spell S-E-X. The only hurdle: Ford, which feels somewhat aggressive about non-Ford cars named Model anything, and threatened a lawsuit should Tesla go ahead with the E nomenclature. So, Musk says for the Model 3, Tesla will represent it with three bars — spelling S-III-X instead.

Clever.

The Death Of Cheesy, Cheap Clip Art

I started buying clipart so far back in the day the Mac was still in a box and the clipart wasn’t digital. It had to be scanned to be used by a computer. Fortunately, in the age of vector graphics and high resolution images, cheesy, cheap clip art is a dying breed. As a long time Mac user I’m a sucker for packages, and PrintLife is one that is hard to ignore.

Other than the price, there’s little to not like about PrintLife; a package of templates and artwork for anyone who needs to print or design anything graphic and do it in a hurry. This isn’t just another package of clipart. This is a package of templates that do almost everything from labels and greeting cards, to certificates, invitations, business cards, posters, flyers, ads, and anything else that requires a graphic touch.

Here’s the requisite sample composite.

PrintLife Samples

Alright, they’re attractive, professional caliber designs. How do you get them onto your Mac?

The app and package is a no-brainer. Select from over 600 print project templates, hundreds of label templates, and even 150 business card templates. The tools let you drag and drop and mix and match design components for your project.

PrintLife Templates

The key to using PrintLife is the template package. In fact, there are more than 5,000 graphic element, and the download of the entire collection is over 7.6 gigabytes. The app tools are simple to use, too. Select a template, select graphic components, drag and drop. Or just change the text in a template to match what you need to create.

I’ve bought dozens of graphic artwork packages through the years; many priced less, and often priced higher. This is a good one for the neophyte designer, print shop, and web graphic designer. The entire package costs less than the popular Print Shop 3 package, but has fewer images, fewer templates, fewer effects, and no additional fonts.

Otherwise, PrintLife is a good package that’s easy to setup and use for those who don’t want to invest too much time and money. With PrintLife or The Print Shop 3 on a Mac I can declare the death of cheesy and cheap clipart packages.

What The iPhone 6 Needs

As if there is a shortage of what Apple must stuff into the upcoming and so-called iPhone 6, the irrepressible Adrian Kingsley-Hughes adds more to the list:

Speculation as to what the iPhone 6 will bring to the table is reaching fever-pitch, and as usual the internet is awash with mockups and what claim to be leaked parts. But rather than wade through the gossips and conjecture, I’m going to approach my take on the iPhone 6 from a different angle and look at what it needs to stay ahead of the game.

Spoiler Alert!

  • Bigger screens
  • Better battery life
  • Tougher screen
  • Waterproof
  • Faster Wi-Fi
  • Leverage advanced features

Yes, people get paid to write stuff like that and call it analysis. Maybe it was a slow news day.

7 Signs You’re About To Be Fired

Dominique Rodgers from Monster with a list of issues every employee on the block needs to know.

You’ve heard the rumors in the breakroom. Layoffs are imminent. Or maybe you just didn’t meet your productivity goals last quarter and you’re nervous. Are you the one who’ll be laid off? Did your mistake cost you your job? How can you tell?

Here’s how:

  • Responsibility has taken a nosedive
  • The boss avoids you
  • You’ve been disciplined
  • Robots!
  • No more training
  • Company was acquired
  • You’re asked to create a job description

That lost one is just cruel.

Smart Bricks, Lego Style

Cool idea from France:

Smart Bricks look almost exactly like large-scale Lego bricks, with raised knobs along the top that slot into grooves in the bottom of other bricks which allow them to snap together.

The bricks are made from high-strength concrete, held in place by adhesive rather than mortar, and reinforced by steel bars if necessary.

Is It Mouse? Or, Screen Pointer? Mouseposé Knows

Does your Mac have a mouse? Mine does. Even when I use my MacBook while traveling, I take a Magic Mouse with me. A mouse is more precise than using fingers on a trackpad. The majority of Apple’s Macs are sold without a mouse, so should we refer to the Mac’s screen pointer as a ‘mouse‘ or simply as a ‘screen pointer?’ I choose the latter because it’s more precise.

That brings me to a favorite Mac mouse utility. It’s called Mouseposé and it’s the perfect utility for displaying the Mac’s mouse or screen pointer on large screens, especially during presentations. When activated Mouseposé dims the screen and puts a spotlight halo around the onscreen pointer which makes it easier to find, and much easier to see and use, and perfect for bringing attention to a click during a presentation.

Here’s a perfect example. With Mouseposé installed, clicking on a button in an app dims the screen a bit, then highlights where the pointer is at the moment.

Mousepose

Does Mouseposé do more than simply dim the screen and highlight the pointer? Yes, but not much more, and that’s the point. Mouseposé is an elegant utility that does not over promise and under deliver.

Not only does the screen dim and the pointer receive a visible halo, but once clicked, the halo gets a red circle or two (optional) to let viewers focus on the click. There’s also an option for keystroke visualization so viewers can see the involved keystrokes.

Options include a Hotkey toggle, deactivation time (a slider), as well as a slider to adjust the halo radius, the halo blur, opacity and color and more.

Mouseposé Preferences

Lest you think Mouseposé is a one trick pony utility, read on. Mouseposé can handle AppleScript and speech recognition, works with remote control devices, and can even highlight the app window where the pointer halo is pointing to. For any Mac user who does a presentation Mouseposé is one of those must-have utilities. It doesn’t cost much and it does just enough to make it valuable.

The Fading Galaxy

Once the darling of Apple bashers everywhere, Samsung’s smartphone and tablet business seems to be fading away under an onslaught of cheaper products from China. Jonny Evans:

Samsung used every trick it knew to climb the smartphone pile, but its days as king of the castle are numbered as Galaxy sales growth crumbles before stiffening competition, from market bottom and market top.

To be fair, Samsung sells more smartphones than anyone, but it’s having trouble making much money.

At the top end of the market Apple has the advantage, yet again. Not only are smartphone sales stalling in significant markets across the planet as customers prepare to migrate from Android to iPhone, or to replace the “Designed in Cupertino” devices they already own, but Apple’s existing products have the kind of mojo the “Made in Korea” mob mock but cannot match.

The number one smartphone in the world? Apple’s iPhone 5s.

10 Cars That Hold Their Resale Value

Jason Notte:

There’s a bit of logic in making a long-term investment in a commodity that depreciates in value as soon as it leaves the lot. That vehicle’s value drops, but it doesn’t just go crashing to the ground. Unless you decide to drive it until it’s a pile of parts or buy a less reliable model to save money in the short-term, your vehicle with still have significant resale value of tens of thousands of miles down the road.

Spoiler Alert!

  • Dodge Challenger
  • Chevrolet Silverado
  • Honda CR-V
  • Chevrolet Camaro
  • Toyota Tundra
  • Chevrolet Corvette
  • Toyota 4Runner
  • Jeep Wrangler
  • Toyota Tacoma
  • Toyota FJ Cruiser

Lots of Toyotas and trucks on that list.

Didn’t See That Coming

Take this with a grain of salt, considering it came from Inquisitr.

George Clooney was all set to marry British Lawyer Amal Alamuddin, but he overlooked one crucial factor. Amal comes from an Orthodox Lebanese Druze family and her mother, Baria Alamuddin is not happy that her daughter is intending to marry “outside the faith.”

And:

There are claims that Baria has contacted George Clooney and asked him to consider becoming Muslim, and converting to Druze. However, there are no signs that George is very interested in doing that, and there is no evidence that think Amal would want him to.

Didn’t see that coming, did you?

Way To Go Dave!

Natalie Abrams:

Days after walking out on CNN Newsroom host Fredericka Whitfield in the middle of an interview, Rivers was on the flip side of things while appearing on The Late Show.

After explaining that Whitfield was “very judgmental, very nasty, very opinionated … like my wedding night,” Rivers told David Letterman that she was recently passed over for a Depends commercial. “While I’m talking to you, I’m taking a dump,” Rivers joked of the commercial dialogue, to which Letterman promptly walked out.

Simplenote vs. Evernote: A Tale Of 2 Mac Notes Apps

Mac users will find there is no shortage of apps to take notes. Many are free, most cost a few dollars, some record audio to match the notes, and the number of notes apps continues to grow. Why? What’s so special about taking notes? Which app is the best?

As usual, the answer to the latter is, “It depends.” The answer to the former is much the same. Here’s my look at two notes apps for the Mac and I love and use, both free, and both sync up nicely between devices.

Simplenote:

This rather simplistic Mac notes app is from the same folks who create WordPress. Simplenote is free, instantly backed up, and works on multiple devices– from iOS to Android, Kindle to Mac, but, oddly enough, there’s not a version for Windows PCs.

You’re required to organize your notes files yourself in Simplenote, but the app keeps multiple versions of a note document, and makes it easy to search with built-in tags. Simplenote is a good way to create a list, capture an idea, write an article, and not be encumbered with a learning curve (no buttons, no toolbar).

What else do you need? If you need more, Evernote provides it.

Evernote:

Evernote should probably be renamed EverywhereNotes but that’s a bit cumbersome. Evernote is free if you don’t use too much storage, but unlike Simplenote, this app runs everywhere and is packed with features.

Notes stay in sync between devices, but organizing tools are more extensive, and the notes app itself is more like a mini-word processor. Evernote saves almost everything; from webpages to photos, audio notes, maps, plans, documents, itineraries. Everything but email. Each platform– from Mac to Windows, from iOS to Android, and others– has its own app, and each app has companion products that extend Evernote enough to compete with Microsoft Word in usage.

Evernote, while free for many of us depending on how much storage we need and which features we want, isn’t expensive even in Premium or Business class, starting at $5 or $10 per month (even with a $45 annual discount, and $450 over 10 years, Evernote remains a bargain when compared to the capability), but workgroup capabilities make it easier to justify the price tag.

So, which do I use?

Both.

I prefer to segregate business notes from personal notes. Evernote gets the former while Simplenote gets the latter. I don’t do Windows so Simplenote’s one platform misfire doesn’t count. Evernote, while not as simple to use is sufficiently packed with features that there’s a true world learning curve. If you can type then you’ve already mastered Simplenote.

Families Aboard The Enterprise

If you’ve ever wondered why StarFleet allowed families about the Enterprise in Star Trek TNG, Dan Holliday has the answer:

So the reason is rooted in Gene Roddenberry’s half-baked ideas about the future and his obsession with peace. Roddenberry was incredibly scarred by World War II, and he was obsessed with a future of peaceful exploration of the galaxy. While he accepted that there might be “others” outside of the Federation that were not idealists, for him the size of the United Federation of Planets’ space was so vast that the Galaxy-class ships would have families for their pathfinder voyages.

And what happened to Star Trek after Roddenberry died?

Roddenberry’s idea sucked. The moment he died, the producers backpedaled as quickly as possible from everything he wanted. And like George Lucas, he could not be trusted to materialize his dream because it was far too meta for most audiences to grasp. A TV show needs to make money, and to make money they need drama.

Who was the best Star Trek Captain?

Comeback: The MG

I can’t wait for this one. While Mazda’s Miata evokes the two-seater sports car of yesteryear, most of the famous names have been absent for decades. George Kennedy with a look at what lies beyond the MG TF (MG now owned by China):

The roadster will be built on one of two new vehicle architectures under development. These platforms will be designed to be flexible enough to develop multiple vehicles under it. This is much the way that Volkswagen employs several vehicles under its MQB platform, thus lowering production costs.

Alright, a new MG. When?

Someone inside MG that confirms the (originally) British automaker is bringing back a roadster, which will be a spiritual successor to the MG TF (seen below, with its own predecessors in the background). Details were vague, citing a return date of “before the end of the decade.”

2020? Who will be around to remember the MG legacy when the new model arrives?

Corvette vs. Beamer

Everyone loves a shootout and Patrick George delivers a good one with look at a Corvette Stingray vs. A 2015 BMW M4.

While the Stingray’s starting price is considerably less than the M4′s, both ended up in the same ballpark in terms of power, weight and technology.

The M4′s twin-turbo inline six puts out 425 horsepower and it weighs in at about 3,600 pounds; the Corvette’s V8 has 460 horsepower, and it’s around 3,300 pounds. And of course, both send power to the rear wheels.

Mano o mano? Nope. The video is more of a love fest for the Corvette.

DARPA: The Pentagon’s Mad Science Division

Mariella Moon writing on the history of DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency), a Pentagon entity famous for building killer robots, which many fear could wipe out mankind and overtake the world.

DARPA was created as a response to the Soviet Union’s successful launch of Sputnik, which, according to DARPA itself, signaled that “a fundamental change was needed in America’s defense science and technology programs.” Since then, it’s been involved in several technological milestones; for instance, it developed an early networking system that went live in 1969 called the ARPANET. It’s one of the networks that eventually led to creation of the internet, which, suffice it to say, changed the world.

Mankind isn’t looking all that good in the internet age, so maybe the internet is a killer robot.

3D Comes To The Mac’s Desktop Wallpaper

Alright, it’s not real 3D. And it’s not even the 3D you see in movies (with glasses). But Digital Clock 3D might be the coolest looking and totally functional 3D-like Desktop wallpaper ever on a Mac. Think Dr. Who clock. Think Warehouse 13 clock. Think Jules Verne clock.

What does a Mac user want in Desktop wallpaper? A glorious image of renown, and maybe a little functionality thrown in for good measure. That’s Digital Clock 3D.

If ever a picture was worth a thousand words (or, maybe a little less), this is it.

Digital Clock

Digital Clock 3D is Desktop wallpaper with six different types of clocks which appear similar to 3D graphics (ready for MacBook Pro Retina displays, too). There’s also an original music track to add a clever and unique effect.

The package of clocks also functions in screensaver mode and can be used with a password.

More Digital Clock 3D

The app can be setup to start up when your Mac starts, even with auto login. It works on Macs with multiple connected displays, and won’t prevent your Mac from going to sleep.

If you like the designs you’re likely to be impress with others by the same Mac app developer who specializes in clever Desktop wallpaper and screensaver apps. Some are free, but most cost a few dollars. One of them, the Mechanical Clock, has been on my Mac for over a year. During Shark Week you’re likely to enjoy using Sharks 3D which makes your Mac’s screens (works on multiple displays) look like an aquarium for sharks.

Shark 3D

Be careful, though. These Desktop wallpaper screensaver apps are highly addictive and most come with Mac App Store in-app purchase options (for example, add more sharks). Otherwise, these are best of breed and highly recommended.

Size Matters

Latest images and details on Apple’s highly anticipated iPhone 6, due ‘this fall.’ Marc Saltzman:

Citing various sources, sites like Chinese web portal Tencent and carriers including Germany’s Deutsche Telekom claim a 4.7-inch iPhone will launch on September 19. This would be a much larger phone than the current 4-inch (diagonal) screen found in the iPhone 5, 5C and 5S.

Bloomberg last week also claimed Apple may launch the rumored 5.5-inch “phablet” version of the iPhone 6 along with the 4.7-inch version at the same time – though other sites predict there will still be a 2- or 3-month delay between the two models due to screen and battery issues with the larger iPhone 6.

Of all Apple’s iPhone launches, other than carrying iOS 8, this one has the least stable list of potential features and functions. Even the iPhone name might be changed. iPhone Air, anyone?

Goliath Tarantulas

The one creature that shows up in nearly everyone’s nightmares. Bahar Gholipour on the ‘Spiders Alive‘ exhibition in the American Museum of Natural History:

Among the live spiders in the exhibition is the Goliath bird-eater tarantula (Theraphosa blondi), one of the largest spiders in the world, which measures about 12 inches across. Other arachnids on display include the Chilean rose hair tarantula (Grammostola rosea) from the deserts of Chile, the emperor scorpion (Pandinus imperator) native to rainforests of West Africa, African whip spiders (Damon variegatus) with whiplike antennas measuring up to 10 inches long, and a giant vinegaroon (Mastigoproctus giganteus), which can spray a vinegarlike chemical when it is bothered.

I won’t bother.

707 Horses

Steve Siler on the details of Chrysler’s 6.2-liter ‘Hellcat’ V-8 with 707 horsepower:

This makes the Challenger Hellcat the most powerful Challenger ever, Dodge’s most powerful V-8 ever, and the most powerful muscle car ever. (So you don’t have to look it up, Ford’s previous-generation lighter, smaller Mustang GT500 currently boasts a huge 662 hp and 631 lb-ft of torque, while the Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 makes a comparatively wimpy 580 hp and 580 lb-ft of torque. Yep, they’ve been served.)

I’ve never ever had a good experience with a Chrysler product. Ever.

Free: My Favorite Mac Maintenance & Optimization Tool

There is no shortage of apps to enhance your Mac, perform various and sundry maintenance procedures, customize and personalize, and optimize. A few are free. Most cost a few dollars. Some are downright expensive. If what you’re after is the most bang for the buck, Onyx should be on your Mac. It’s the simple, quick, effective way to maintain and optimize your Mac. Onyx is free.

First, the list of what you can do with Onyx is extensive, ranging from simple cache deletions to verifying your Mac’s storage, to repairing permissions and running maintenance scripts.

Wait. Doesn’t the Mac already do some of those chores?

Yes, but Onyx does more, and puts all the maintenance and optimization options into a single, multi-tabbed interface. Starting at the top and going toward the right, Onyx performs a limited S.M.A.R.T. status check, verifies the structure of your Mac’s disk, and even double-checks the files in Preferences.

Onyx for Mac

Under Maintenance, Onyx lets you manually run Daily, Weekly, and Monthly system maintenance scripts, as well as repair system permissions and rebuild LaunchServices.

The Cleaning tab displays both System and User options for cache deletion, including browsing, fonts, and logs. The Automation tab allows you to select which functions to run when you start up Onyx. Parameters displays dozens of options that can be scheduled to run automatically in the background.

That Onyx is free and does so much to help keep your Mac running well and optimized is a tribute to a devoted Mac developer. You can spend money to do much of what Onyx does, but Onyx does it for free. Highly recommended for every Mac user.