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Nov 26 2014 1:24AM EST | Source: MacLife.com

We're still waiting on Apple to start implementing its own motion controls into Apple TV (if they ever come at all), but in the meantime, other companies are already stepping in to fill the gap with third-party devices. Among the most notable is Onecue, which will let you control your Apple TV and other devices with simple gestures of your hands when it's released in early 2015.

Much like the Kinect that accompanies Microsoft's Xbox entertainment system, Onecue is a sleek black device that sits in the general vicinity of your television and reads the room for movement. Once it finds it, it picks up on specialized gestures for commands such as changing the channel or lowering the volume (and the video below even shows it going so far as to open the blinds into the narrator's techy house).

Judging from the video, there's a huge range of Bluetooth- and Wi-Fi-enabled devices the Onecue can connect to, although there's enough commands on display that learning how to use the thing must feel like participating in a beginner's sign language course. It's a universal remote at heart, but it points to a future where we may not need little plastic planks covered in buttons to control the various units in our entertainment centers.

Again, seeing something like this built into Apple TV isn't far beyond the realm of imagination. Exactly a year ago today, we reported that Apple confirmed that it had purchased PrimeSense, the Israeli company responsible for designing the technology behind Microsoft's original Kinect. Apple hasn't incorporated the tech into any of its recent releases, but it's possible we could see some form of it in the long-rumored upcoming refresh for Apple's diminutive entertainment system.

Tired of waiting for a rumor? You can pre-order Onecue for your existing Apple TV for $129.99.

Follow this article's writer, Leif Johnson, on Twitter.

Nov 25 2014 11:49PM EST | Source: MacLife.com

Another day, another story about Apple breaking records for its market value. But this time, it's really, really impressive. Today the Cupertino company's market capitalization shot over $700 billion for the first time before slipping a bit in after-hours trading. The current share price stands at $119.65 at the time of writing, which translates into around $837 if Apple's stock split from earlier in the year is taken out of the equation.

Only a few days ago, Apple reached a market capitalization of $663.2 billion, leading Bloomberg to point out that the iPhone maker was now worth more than the entire Russian stock market. That's an increase of roughly $40 billion within the span of only two weeks. The company has seen an almost 60 percent boost in the valuation of its stock over the last year alone, and the stock has jumped up by 24 percent in the weeks since the company's October 16 iPhone reveal event.

That's a big turn of events considering that so much of 2013 was filled with stories of investors fretting that Apple wasn't doing enough to introduce new categories and that new CEO Tim Cook perhaps wasn't the man that should have succeeded Steve Jobs. (In fact, Apple stock has now doubled in value since Cook took the helm.) Apple stock tumbled deeply after reaching a previous market cap of $658 billion in 2012, but the record-breaking sales of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus have pushed it far past that.

And with the holidays just around the corner, Apple's market cap could rise further still. Apple Pay and the buzz surrounding the upcoming Apple Watch have also attracted the attention of investors, who should find their stockings stuffed with a lot of a green if Apple maintains its current pace.

The Wall Street Journal has compiled a list of 17 facts that put Apple's $700 billion market capitalization in perspective, and several of them reveal just how far the Cupertino company's come in just a few years. During the dot-com boom, for instance, Microsoft's value was a full 26 times larger than Apple; today, Tim Cook's company is 1.78 percent larger than its Redmond rival.

Follow this article's writer, Leif Johnson, on Twitter.

Nov 25 2014 11:34PM EST | Source: CNET iPad Atlas
Lots of models. Lots of prices. Do you get this year's version, or get last year's at a discount? Let's weigh the options.






Nov 25 2014 10:58PM EST | Source: CNET iPad Atlas
Lots of models. Lots of prices. Do you get this year's version, or get last year's at a discount? Let's weigh out the options.






Nov 25 2014 9:09PM EST | Source: REUTERS Technology
SEOUL (Reuters) - South Korea's Samsung Group said on Wednesday it is selling stakes in four chemical and defense firms for 1.9 trillion won($1.72 billion) to Hanwha Group, the latest move in the massive task of restructuring the country's largest conglomerate.

Nov 25 2014 8:34PM EST | Source: Geek.com
Watch
Wearing a whole computer on your wrist means there will be some folks out there that completely ignore whether or not you should do something and instead focus on that glorious “because I […]

Nov 25 2014 7:54PM EST | Source: MacLife.com

If you use your Mac for word processing, creating and editing spreadsheets or putting the finishing touches to a slideshow presentation, you need a suite of office applications with the right tools.

The Microsoft Office suite is near ubiquitous, but we’ve been waiting for an update to the Mac version since 2011, and it’s still relatively expensive. While iWork is now free, it lacks some of the features that come with other office suites. LibreOffice, however, is not only completely free, but it’s constantly updated with improvements and new features.

The three most popular programs in LibreOffice are the word processor Writer, the spreadsheet tool Calc, and the presentation and slide-show creator Impress. Each of these is installed with the suite when you download it from libreoffice.org. Once installed, you’ll notice the layouts of the LibreOffice programs are very similar to their competitors, so if you’re used to Microsoft Office on a Mac, or earlier versions of iWork, you will probably find quite a lot of LibreOffice familiar.

The toolbars in Writer, Calc, Impress, and the other tools in LibreOffice are pretty similar. There’s the new document icon (in the shape of the icon for the program you’re working on), plus icons for document open, save, email, PDF export, and print. The toolbars also share familiar buttons for spelling and grammar checking, cutting, pasting, and copying to clipboard, and undo/redo. Under this toolbar are buttons and menus for altering the format of text and other objects. The rest of the toolbars contain buttons for tools that are specific to the program you’re using, such as shapes to decorate slides in Impress.

Creating new documents is easy; just click the new document icon or go to File > New and choose the document type. You can also access LibreOffice’s large library of templates to help you get started. To do this, click File on the top menu and select New > Templates. It’s blank at the moment, so click the Spreadsheets tab. On the right of the window, click the icon with the arrow. This lets you import templates from the LibreOffice website. These templates range from budget spreadsheets that you can use in Calc to help you keep your finances in order, professional presentations for you to use in Impress, and leaflets you can create in Writer.

LibreOffice can handle a large range of file formats, which makes it easy to open and edit documents even if they have been originally created in another program. Similarly, when it comes to saving a brand new document, you have a large choice of file types — just click the save icon or hit Command + S. A drop-down list displays the vast array of file types for you to save your document as, including Microsoft Office formats. LibreOffice’s default file type is known as Open Document Format. For LibreOffice Writer files these file extensions are ODT, for Impress presentations it’s ODP, and for spreadsheets in Calc it’s ODS.

While Writer, Calc, and Impress have all the regular tools we’ve come to expect from Office suites, there are also a number of advanced tools. In Writer, you can use Mail Merge, which lets you send personalized documents to a large number of recipients quickly and easily. Click the Tools menu and select Mail Merge Wizard to be taken step by step through the process.

There are a number of powerful formatting options in Writer that can also really make your documents stand out. As well as changing the fonts, color, and style of your text, you can add bullet points and numbering, as well as changing the alignment and indentation of the text, all from the toolbar. Images and movie files can also be inserted into your documents for added visual impact — just open the Insert menu to see “Pictures,” “Movie and Sound…” and other options. If you’re producing a large document such as a dissertation or report, the indexing features of Writer are a huge help.

Using the Style menu on the toolbar, you can give your chapter and sections impressive-looking styles that make your document easier to navigate. Writer can then automatically create a table of contents based on your chapter and section names — just click the Insert menu bar and go to “Indexes and Tables.” Once your table of contents is created, you can click on the name of the section, heading or chapter you want, and Writer takes you straight there. You can also easily add footnotes and references to your text — ideal if you’re using Writer for academic work. 

Calc is similarly well-stocked when it comes to features. With a spreadsheet full of data, you can use it to create powerful formulas that manipulate your data. You can also easily change the format of the data you include, so if you have a spreadsheet that deals with your household budget, you can turn the numbers you’ve entered into your local currency by clicking the icon of a pile of coins on the toolbar.

One of the most useful tools in Calc is the Graphs feature, which lets you create attractive and useful charts and graphs based on the data you select in your spreadsheet — from standard bar and pie charts to scatter and line graphs.


Slideshows can be created in Impress — ideal for presentations at work.

When it comes to presentations and slideshows in Impress, you’re going to want to make each slide look as good as possible. Impress makes this easy with a number of useful formatting tools, layouts, graphics, and color schemes. You can add transitions and animations — and even create your own — to make your presentations really stand out. Experiment!

 

A Quick Look at the Toolbar

A. Function Buttons

These buttons let you quickly perform some of the most widely used tasks, such as creating a new document, opening an existing one and saving your work.

B. Edit Buttons

These buttons are used to cut, copy and paste selected elements, as well as undo and redo mistakes and corrections.

C. Format Options

These menus let you choose the font, style and size of text, along with formatting such as italics. Depending on the program you’re using, other text and graphic formatting options may appear here.

D. Information Bar

This bar contains info about the document you’re working on. In Writer, this includes the number of words and characters, page number and language. In Calc, it includes the sheet number and any sums you’ve created.

 

How to Find Your Way around Libre Office

1. Format Text in Writer

To give your documents a bit more visual flair, you can change the font, size, and format on part of the text. To do this, select the text you want to format by clicking and dragging the mouse to highlight the words. You can apply a ready-made style by clicking the menu on the taskbar where it says ‘default style’. Next to that menu, you see a drop-down list box that lets you select the font. The number next to this menu relates to the font size – change it to a larger number to enlarge the text, or a smaller number to shrink it.

 

2. Charts and Graphs in Calc

One of the best ways to make sense of your important data is by creating a chart or graph for a visual overview – and Calc is great at doing all the hard work for you. All you need to do is select the cells that contain the data from which you want to make a graph. Next, you can click the red Graph icon (the one shaped like a pie chart) on the toolbar and a window opens up showing you a range of charts and graphs you can use. As you click each choice, a preview of your data in the chart appears. 

 

3. Simple Formulas

As the name of the program suggests, Calc is very good at calculations using the data in the cells. Click an empty cell and type “=” (without the quotes), which tells Calc you are writing a formula. You can perform simple calculations such as multiplying the data in one cell by another. Just type the name of the cell (by its column letter and row number, A2, for example), add an asterisk (*) and then the second name of the cell. For division, use the “/” symbol, and for adding and subtracting use “+” and “–” respectively.

 

4. Adding Transitions to a Slideshow

Adding transitions between slides is a particularly quick and easy way to give your presentation a more professional edge, plus it makes them more engaging and interesting for your audience to look at. To add a transition, right-click the slide preview in the left-hand menu and select Slide Transition. A long list of transitions appear in a menu on the right-hand side; just click one to see a preview. If you need to, you can also select Apply to All Slides to make the transition consistent throughout your presentation.

Nov 25 2014 7:31PM EST | Source: REUTERS Technology
SEOUL (Reuters) - Samsung Group [SAGR.UL] said on Wednesday it is selling stakes in defense firm Samsung Techwin Co Ltd and three other units for 1.9 trillion won ($1.72 billion) to Hanwha Group units.

Nov 25 2014 6:29PM EST | Source: REUTERS Technology
(Reuters) - Hewlett-Packard Co said its quarterly revenue fell in almost every business segment over the year, highlighting weaknesses ahead of the company's planned 2015 separation of its enterprise services from its traditional computer and printing units.

Nov 25 2014 6:13PM EST | Source: MacLife.com

For years Apple fans have clamored for Nintendo to bring its catalog of vintage games to iOS, and though that’s not likely to happen anytime soon, the arrival of Shovel Knight on Mac might be the next-best thing. Clearly inspired by the games of yesteryear, Shovel Knight feels like a lost classic from Nintendo’s 8-bit glory days in the best ways possible.

Like the nostalgic ’80s titles that inspired it, Shovel Knight doesn’t take itself too seriously — you’re a knight armed with a shovel, for crying out loud — and it makes great use of simple but inspired play mechanics. Using your shovel, you can dig up treasure, wallop foes, and reflect projectiles, but it’s the ability to use the shovel like a pogo stick to bounce off of objects or enemies that really makes the game fun. It also opens up creative possibilities for exploring the game’s levels and discovering hidden routes. 

Each themed stage features a distinct look, and often its own unique hazards — flaming floors in the laboratory, lights that go out in the graveyard, or wind that blows you around a massive airship, for example —in addition to platforming staples like moving platforms, collapsing floors, spiked pits of doom, and mid-stage bosses. Levels conclude with intense battles against members of The Order of No Quarter: a delightfully goofy troop of knights, each of which requires different tactics to defeat.

And the game doesn’t just play like an NES action-platformer; it looks the part, too, thanks to charmingly lo-fi (yet vividly detailed) hand-drawn graphics and a limited color palette. Admittedly, the developers cheat a bit at times (there are way more colors on screen than old video game consoles could ever produce), but Shovel Knight is more about delivering classic gaming as you remember it, not as it necessarily was. The appealing visuals are perfectly complemented by a catchy chip-tune soundtrack, responsive controls, and some genuinely amusing writing.

While the game is decidedly old-school in many ways, the difficulty, fortunately, is not. There’s plenty of challenge to be had, for certain, but a fairly generous checkpoint system prevents it from ever becoming too frustrating. There are also numerous ways to permanently upgrade your character, plus you can obtain limited-use secondary weapons — including a flame-spewing wand and a locket that grants temporary invincibility — that can really come in handy in a pinch.

The bottom line. Shovel Knight is a fantastic retro platformer from beginning to end. If you like console-style games, you’ll dig this one.

Review Synopsis

Product: 

Shovel Knight 1.2.2

Company: 

Yacht Club Games

Price: 

$14.99

Requirements: 

OS X 10.6 or later, Intel Core 2 Duo 2.0 GHz or equivalent, 2 GB RAM, 250 MB available space

Positives: 

Great retro visuals and chip-tune soundtrack. Fun core play mechanics, especially the bounce attack. Creative levels and bosses. Flying roto-rats.

Negatives: 

Old-school style might not appeal to some.

Nov 25 2014 5:48PM EST | Source: REUTERS Technology
(Reuters) - Twitter Inc is in talks to buy Shots, a selfie photo-sharing app, CNBC reported, citing a source close to the Justin Bieber-backed company.

Nov 25 2014 5:23PM EST | Source: REUTERS Technology
(Reuters) - Hewlett-Packard Co said its quarterly revenue fell in almost every business segment over the year, calling into question its plans to jumpstart growth by splitting off enterprise services from its traditional computer and printing units next year.

Nov 25 2014 5:00PM EST | Source: MacLife.com

Having the right lighting in a room can change the entire feel of the environment. Imagine setting up the lights in your room like those that you see in a theater, or getting the perfect feel for your house party with light that matches the music. No matter the situation, you can get the look you want in the room with the ilumi LED Smartbulb. It's on sale right now in our Deals tab.

The ilumi LED Smartbulb is the smartest light bulb you'll ever encounter. With a lifespan of up to 20 years, it's a great investment that will pay off for a long time. It's five times as energy efficient as a regular light bulb, and it's capable of much more. You have complete control over the ilumi LED Smartbulb, from brightness to color of light. With just a tap of your smartphone, you can change the mood of your room with this simple, bright bulb.

The ilumi LED Smartbulb usually retails for $90. If you head to our Deals tab, you can save yourself 12% off that price. That means you'll pay just $79. It's a great price for an awesome bulb that will last you for 20 years, so grab this offer today!

Still after more offers? There are tons of bluetooth speakers out there, but there's only one that levitates. The Om/One speaker delivers incredible sound with a design like you've never seen, with the speaker floating effortlessly in the air as it plays your favorite jams. This incredible and unique speaker is on sale for just $195. Grab it today!

Nov 25 2014 4:41PM EST | Source: REUTERS Technology
SEATTLE (Reuters) - China has levied about $140 million in back taxes from Microsoft Corp in the first major case concerning cross-border tax evasion in the country, as regulators ramp up pressure on U.S. corporations doing business there.

Nov 25 2014 4:32PM EST | Source: CNET Android Atlas
Love the free version of Evernote, but want a taste of the new premium features? Check out this quick way to activate the business card scanning feature for free.






Nov 25 2014 4:26PM EST | Source: REUTERS Technology
(Reuters) - Hewlett-Packard Co reported a 2.5 percent drop in quarterly revenue, hurt by weak sales to enterprise customers.

Nov 25 2014 3:50PM EST | Source: CNET Android Atlas
Having already blasted past its fundraising goal, this smartphone-controlled sleep aid is now working toward stretch goals.






Nov 25 2014 3:33PM EST | Source: REUTERS Technology
BRUSSELS (Reuters) - The United States voiced concern on Tuesday over a draft plan by two EU lawmakers to break up Google Inc , saying politicians should not influence the EU's antitrust inquiry into the world's most popular Internet search engine.

Nov 25 2014 3:29PM EST | Source: Geek.com
SHIELD_Tablet_Plus_Controller
Whether you’re lining up somewhere after loading up on a Thanksgiving feast, or curling up on the couch in your pajamas with your finger on the refresh button, the siren song of ridiculous […]

Nov 25 2014 1:12PM EST | Source: MacLife.com

Apple Reservations commercial

In what has to be one of the quickest turnarounds in Hollywood history, the Steve Jobs biopic dumped by Sony last week has a new home at Universal, complete with a new leading man to play the iconic Apple CEO. Our Tuesday Morning Report also has the details on a pair of new iPhone 6 commercials, and an opportunity to win $5,000 for you and good cause just by giving Adobe Voice a spin on your iPad. Click to read more!

Apple Debuts Pair of New iPhone 6 TV Commercials

Jimmy Fallon and Justin Timberlake are at it again, this time in another pair of Apple television commercials for the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. According to MacRumors, the fifth and sixth ads in this series focus on the gaming capabilities of the latest smartphone models, as well as iOS 8's ability to make and receive telephone calls on a Mac.

"The A8 chip is so powerful it brings gaming to the next level. I mean if you're into that kind of thing," Fallon quips in the first spot entitled "Gamers," which shows the duo squaring off with a round of online battle arena game Vainglory.



"Did you know you can use an iPhone 6 to make a call from almost any Apple device?" Fallon inquires in the second commercial entitled "Reservations," which puts the focus on Continuity as the pair begin goofing around making calls between various devices.

Both new commercials are embedded above for your viewing pleasure, or can be viewed directly from the Apple website or the company's official YouTube channel.

Universal Rescues Orphaned Steve Jobs Biopic from Sony

Talk about fast turnarounds: The Hollywood Reporter announced Monday evening that the biopic on the life of Steve Jobs has found a new home at Universal Pictures, less than a week after being ejected from Sony. Based on the late Apple co-founder's official biography written by Walter Isaacson, the project has been in development for two years, and reportedly fetched upwards of $30 million.

The article also confirmed earlier reports that Michael Fassbender is attached to the project to star as Steve Jobs, with director Danny Boyle at the helm working from a screenplay by Aaron Sorkin. No start date has been announced for the production, but Boyle reportedly pushed for an early 2015 shoot to accommodate Fassbender's schedule, which was cited as one of the reasons Sony abandoned the project.

Create with Adobe Voice, Earn Chance to Win $5,000

What are you thankful for this holiday season? Adobe has launched a contest to help promote its free Adobe Voice app for iPad, with the winner receiving $5,000, with a matching contribution made to a nonprofit or educational institution of your choice; entrants can also win one of 30 $50 Visa gift cards as part of the promotion.

To enter, simply download the free Adobe Voice app for iPad and create a short video of 60 seconds or less that shows what you're thankful for. Follow @adobevoice on Twitter and share your video using the hashtag #Voiceyourthanks between now and December 9, 2014 for your chance to win.

Follow this article’s author, J.R. Bookwalter on Twitter

 

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