Thursday, July 31, 2014

USB Security Flaw

In the biggest security news since Heartbleed, USB may have a security flaw. Dubbed BadUSB, every USB device has a chip that can control the USB connection, potentially for malicious activity, according to SR Labs. For example, a USB could turn get passwords redirected to itself. Nothing is safe anymore! It's the apocalypse! This is worst thing to happen since Gmail was down for a whole hour earlier this year! But wait! There is a solution: PS/2 keyboards and mice! Time for an ancient history lesson. Back in the ancient days of XP, Palm Pilots, and Netscape (Good times...), there was something called a PS/2 port that keyboards and mice typically used. However, this shouldn't be dwelled over. We've made it this far using USB as an everyday part of our lives, just be cautious and don't use any unnecessary USB cables. 

Two USB Ports

Two PS/2 Ports

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

New MacBook Pros with New Haswell Processors

A minor update for the MacBook Pro lineup came today. New MacBook Pros were released with updated, faster Haswell processors, in addition to a bump up in the standard amount of RAM (8 GB). Also, good news for those who don't want Retina display MacBook Pros. The regular MacBook Pro now costs $1099 ($100 price cut). Happy shopping!

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

New Mac Mini Coming Soon?

Apple has updated their support page for Boot Camp. Big deal? Absolutely! If you look closely, you'll find a listing for a "Mac mini (Mid 2014)." There is no mid 2014 model of Mac mini yet. While it could be a mistake, Mac mini hasn't been updated since October of 2012. With an update, Mac mini would probably have Haswell processors, faster PCI Express-based flash storage, and 802.11ac WiFi.

Update: The listing for the new Mac mini has been removed.

Monday, July 28, 2014


For designers, digital painters, and app developers, Hues is the app for you! It's helpful little app. Using OS X's default color selector, you can easily obtain the "color code" in hex, RGB, and HSL. It's simple, yet useful! Hues is available from the Mac App Store for $2.99 [Direct Link].

Sunday, July 27, 2014

The Duplicate Finder

Do you ever seem to have an endless amount of duplicate files? Whether it's multiple downloads from a site or a glitch, The Duplicate Finder can help! Just drag a drive or a folder and see how much storage space you can save! With a beautiful iTunes-esque interface, it removes duplicates with style. It's on sale from $9.99 to $2.99 for a limited time, so don't miss out [Direct Link].

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Kindle Unlimited

Amazon recently released a new service called Kindle Unlimited. It allows you to unlimited access to qualifying books and audiobooks for $9.99 a month. You can also get a free trial for 30-days! You don't need a Kindle, just a device compatible with the app or web app. Be sure to check it out!

Friday, July 25, 2014

SysAdmin Day 2014!

It's the 15th annual SysAdmin Day! What is it? According to, "it's only the single greatest 24 hours on the planet." Celebrate with cake, ice cream, pizza, cards, gifts, and more for your system administrator. Give them that one day of respect that they think of the other 364 days of the year!

Image Credit to Spiceworks (Flickr)

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Google Acquires Twitch

One of the most trending acquisitions since Apple acquired Beats has been Google acquiring Twitch for $1 billion. For those who don't know, Twitch is a major San Francisco based website that allows gamers to stream games live to their viewers. Google (specifically YouTube) will use it to enhance their streaming services in some way. Not much else is known on the acquisition and Twitch had no comment.

Twitch's Logo

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Alex Voice for Accessibility in iOS 8

In iOS 8, Alex (Stephen Hawking voice) will be used as the accessibility voice for those who are blind. This is interesting as it has been Siri before. He will also be used for speaking selected text aloud. Could he possibly be a voice for Siri in the future as well? Possibly, but I don't think Apple would replace their new natural sounding Siri with that of Alex's. But, if Apple continues in the direction that their in, they may allow third-party voices in the future!

"Alex voice for accessibility" shown briefly at WWDC 2014

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Tips App in iOS 8

In the most recent release of the iOS 8 beta, the Tips app was added. It's a simple app that gives tips that are exclusive for iOS 8. You can "like" and share them. Below is a helpful video on YouTube that MacRumors made.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Stickers Ad

Apple has made a new ad targeted for the people who like to add decals to their MacBooks. The ad shows a plethora of decals used on the MacBook Air. From the Simpsons to Pac Man! And- oh my gosh is that Aperture Science?! Apple has also dedicated a web page for it's "Stickers" ad. To watch the ad, it's embedded below.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Quickly Switch Between Multiple Keyboards in iOS

If you have more than two keyboards in iOS, this will help a lot. Hold the international key to reveal a list of all installed keyboards. Move your finger to select the keyboard. This allows you to quickly switch between keyboards. It install new keyboards in iOS, go to Settings > General > Keyboards > Keyboard > Add New Keyboard... Just in time for iOS 8 third-party keyboards!

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Amazon Smile

If you have a charity you want to donate to, Amazon Smile is for you! Instead of shopping at Amazon, you can shop everything from a-to-z and have a portion of it go to a charity of your choice. This is a no charge on your end, just shop at Amazon Smile. Also, make sure your product is eligible for Amazon Smile. To learn more about Amazon Smile, click here.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Pixelmator is Half Off!

Pixelmator, advanced photo editing software for Mac, is currently 50% off. Previously $29.99, it is now only $15.99 (Okay, almost 50%.). This software is great for artists, graphic designers, and even pixel artists! You can get it from the Mac App Store [Direct Link]. Below is a graphic I made using Pixelmator and is currently used for the Tech Talk 4 Geeks' Twitter account header photo.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Apple Files Patent For Detecting Behavior Changes

Apple has filed a patent that allows an iPhone to lock out a user because of a behavior change. For example, a significant change in grammar would cause the phone to lock out. After the lock, the iPhone would use Touch ID, password, or a notification to another device to confirm identity.

"A method for determining behavior associated with a user device, comprising: receiving behavior data identifying multiple types of user interaction with the user device; comparing the behavior data with patterns of behavior data associated with the user device, wherein the behavior-data patterns are generated from previously-received behavior data of an original user; determining a current user is potentially different from the original user based on the comparison of the behavior data with the patterns; and transmitting a command to the user device to lock the user device until the current user is verified as the original user."

Although the idea is circulating, that doesn't mean it will come to iOS in the future. At the same time, this idea seems pretty significant. Enough so that it may come to iOS. 

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

iTunes Pass

iTunes Pass has released to the public in North America (Japan got it yesterday). iTunes Pass allows you to walking into an Apple Store, tell a Specialist that you want to add credit to your iTunes account, and let them scan your pass from Passbook. To get iTunes Pass, go to the iTunes Store on your iPhone (running iOS 6 or later), scroll to the bottom, find the "Redeem" button, tap it, and tap "Get Started" (under the iTunes Pass section), and add the pass to Passbook. 

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

iPhone 6 Cases Available... ALREADY!

People have looked at the leaked blueprints and specs of the upcoming iPhone 6 and have made cases to sell on sites such as Amazon. These are based purely on speculation, but have been right in previous generations of the iPhone. I don't recommend buying these cases until an official product has been released. But it is still cool to look at the listings on Amazon. Here's a cool one [Direct Link].

Monday, July 14, 2014

Add Finder Tags Using A Custom Shortcut

If you want to quickly add a tag to an item on Mavericks, try this cool tip! Go to System Preferences > Keyboard > Shortcuts > App Shortcuts > and click the "+" icon. For the application, choose Finder. The menu title can be anything, but I chose "Tags..." for simplicity. Finally, in the last text field, press alt (option), command, and "T." Click "Add." Select a document or file and type alt, command, and "T" and the tags screen will appear.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Adding Multiple URLs To Calendar Events

If you want to add multiple URLs to a calendar event in the OS X Calendar app, just follow this quick tip! Make a new event as usual and then go to the URL field. Add your first URL and then press option and return. This allows you to enter an additional link! I hope this helps!

Saturday, July 12, 2014

What It Would Take To Crack The iPhone 6's Front Panel...

Check out this video below! It shows how a sapphire front panel would stand up to various tests of torture. Although the video is in Chinese (or whatever language it's in), you should be able to follow along. Basically, this is the iPhone 6's front panel going under hardcore pain. Check it out!

Friday, July 11, 2014

How to Save Money on Electricity AND Still Keep Cool This Summer

If you're like me, you'll often forget to turn off your fan when you leave your house. This can add up in electricity. Try this cool method! You'll need:

  • a fan
  • a WeMo switch
    • the WeMo app
  • a smartphone (with cellular data)
  • an IFTTT account
(NOTE: I am assuming that a initial setup for the WeMo switch has been completed)

First, connect the fan to the WeMo switch. In the WeMo app, tap the "More" tab (in the iOS version; use the action bar in the Android version), tap "Connect IFTTT," and take note of the activation PIN. Go to the IFTTT website. Click the "Channels" link in the top bar. Find the WeMo switch (make sure it's the correct WeMo device) and type in the code. Once you've activated that channel, you can set up an IFTTT recipe. Click "My Recipes" and then click "Create a Recipe." Make the recipe say "if I enter an area (using the iOS location or Android location; the area should be around your neighborhood), then turn on your fan. Make another recipe that does the exact opposite (exit your neighborhood and turn off your fan). Whenever you exit your neighborhood, your fan will turn off. When you enter, your fan will cool down your room by the time you enter. I hope this helps!

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Happy 6th Birthday App Store!

Six years ago today, the Apple App Store opened its digital doors to the public. July 10, 2008 was the day. Since then, there have been 75 billion downloads. There are 1,118,063 apps on the App Store as well. Pretty amazing! Check out for discounts on apps in celebration of this milestone. Happy birthday App Store!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

What Some OS X Icons Could Look Like in Yosemite

Someone by the alias Arn0 has created a great mockup of third-party apps with a flat design. They're really good! It showcases Twitter, 1Password, and Skype. OS X Yosemite is scheduled to be released to the public this fall.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Siri Gives Thoughts on iOS 8 in Beta

If you have the beta of iOS 8 are asking Siri one thing:
"Siri, do you like iOS 8?"
This gives the user Siri's thoughts on iOS 8. They can get pretty comical and funny. Here are a few of them (One of them even has a HomeKit reference).
"I'm just thrilled about iOS 8 -- It's like moving into a bigger, nicer house. And I get to turn the lights on and off."
"Impressive, but... you'd think they could have talked about me for more than thirty seconds. Sniff." 
"iOS 8 is fantastic. It's like moving into a beautiful new house where someone collects the garbage every few milliseconds."
Image Credit: MacRumors


Monday, July 7, 2014

Apple Pride

Every year, San Francisco holds its Pride Parade to celebrate equality and diversity. Apple participated and made a cool video on their YouTube channel. The video goes along to the song "A Sky Full of Stars" by Coldplay. Check out the embed below:

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Encrypting PDF Files

Since OS X Lion, Apple has removed the ability to encrypt PDF files with by using "Save As." Or so most think! Simply, open a PDF file in Preview, click "File" in the menu bar, hold the option key, and click on "Save As." You can now click "Encrypt" to encrypt it.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Raspberry Pi

In recent times, Raspberry Pi has been an trending topic. It's a nice product. Basically, it's a $35 credit card sized computer that you can do a lot with. You can use it as a personal weather station or a garage door opener. There are some cool projects, so try Googling for them. It has the very basics and requires an SD card, wired internet connection for internet (or WiFi dongle), HDMI for a display, and a 3.5mm jack for sound. Check it out! I've made a board on Pinterest with ideas for Raspberry Pi. Check out the embed below!

Follow Alex's board Pideas on Pinterest.

Friday, July 4, 2014

Apple Will Wipe CloudKit Data for Next Gen. Beta Testers

Important message for beta testers: Apple is going to wipe CloudKit data on July 7. Plan accordingly. This includes iCloud Drive, iCloud Photo Library, and Mail Drop.

Image Credit: MacRumors

On July 8, Apple is expected to release iOS 8 beta 3 and Yosemite Developer Preview #3.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Samsung Calls iPhone Users "Wall Huggers"

Samsung continues its bragging spree with battery life. They now are boasting about battery life. It advertises two key features: battery saving mode and interchangeable batteries. It shows various iPhone owners at wall outlets while Samsung owners rub it in their faces.

"There they are. Clustered around power outlets, near the recycling bins, stained carpeting, and bathrooms. Tethered to the wall. Denied the freedom to enjoy even the most basic things, like grabbing a drink, or sharing a laugh with your co-workers. Or sitting with someone you know. You're stuck here until your battery says so."

The video is embedded below:

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

iOS 8 Voice Messaging May Be Essential Function of iWatch

When you think about it, iOS 8 voice messaging makes a lot of sense! At first, many found it to be another random feature, however, when you incorporate the iWatch into it, it makes sense. Although Apple's voice-to-text service is very accurate, when it goes wrong, there's no keyboard to fix it. For example, saying "Raspberry Pi" may result in "raspberry pie." In addition, Tim Cook says that it is an important feature.

"When we visited with Tim Cook, he said that walking down streets in China one sees people speaking into their phones sending voice rather than text messages. Porting this capability to the watch makes sense as it is easier to send a voice message from a device already on the wrist than pulling out a phone. It also could aid penetration of China, which Cook said has a ways to go."
- Steve Milunovich

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

OS X Photos App Isn't a Total Loss

When Apple announced that Aperture, the professional photo editing app, would have no more support after the OS X Photos app was released, many were disappointed. However, Ars Technica asked an Apple representative for more details on the Photos app. They said this:

"When asked about what Aperture-like features users can expect from the new Photos app, an Apple representative mentioned plans for professional-grade features such as image search, editing, effects, and most notably, third-party extensibility."
- Apple
The OS X Photos app being shown off at WWDC 2014
This screenshot shows off light tools, color tools, fine-tuning, and more!