Casting a Presentation to Chromecast or Amazon Fire TV

The last few years has seen the emergence of small devices that plug into the HDMI port of a TV, connect to your wifi, and allow you to stream from online services such as Netflix and Amazon.

What you also can do is “cast” content from a mobile device to the stick, content that includes movies, photos and music.

What isn’t currently possible is to cast documents to the stick and onto the screen which is a shame as it would be good to do so in situations where you might not have your laptop but do have the stick … Read the rest

Too Much Apple Watch

I woke up this morning to find that Apple’s App Store has been overtaken by apps offering Apple Watch support. Nothing greatly surprising in that as it was officially launched today.

But does it really have to take up so much precious screen real estate? In fact given that I don’t have a watch and nor am I likely to be getting one anytime soon (due to this) can’t I make it go away altogether?

No, of course I can’t. That’s not allowed.… Read the rest

Belaycords Reversible USB Lightning Cable

My Belaycords Reversible USB Lightning Cable arrived this morning and I’m pretty impressed and also left with the question why hasn’t this been done much, much sooner.

USB connectors have had one major problem (until the USB C arrived) in that they had to be inserted the right way round and when you were most likely to be doing that round the back of a PC in a dark corner it was bound to lead to frustration. It seemed that you had a 50/50 chance of getting it right but ended up always 100% wrong!

The Belaycord overcomes that … Read the rest

Adding New Fonts to iOS for use in Word, Drafts and other Apps

I have long loved the font that is used in iA’s Writer app but while I love the app I really wanted to be able to use the font elsewhere and particularly in Drafts.

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After a bit of searching it was clear that the font used in Writer wasn’t available but there was a free alternative as part of Google Fonts called Cousine. The rest of this post will show you how you can get this font onto your iOS device. Firstly download the font package from the Google site.

You will need a copy of a font … Read the rest

Seeing Double – Duet Display for iPad

There has been a lot of noise this week about a new iOS app called Duet Display. This allows you to turn your iPad into an extra display for your Mac. This has been done before but the difference with Duet Display is that it claims to have no lag as it is connected over the lightning/dock cable rather than using wifi.

Duet Display was release yesterday afternoon and I installed it on my iPad Mini and iPhone 6 along with the mandatory companion app on my iMac.

The good news is that it certainly works as described. I … Read the rest

iStick – USB Flash Drive for iPhone and iPad

When I upgraded my iPad Mini I made a huge mistake by not checking the memory size of my existing device. Consequently I got home and discovered too late that I had purchased one with only 16gb. I was (and am) distraught over having to judiciously manage the apps and the space they use in order to be able to do what I want and need to do. If only there was a way to increase the capacity of an iPad.

Well, thanks to a Kickstarter campaign that successfully funded last June there now is a way. Effectively it is … Read the rest

iOS 8 Quality Control

Since it was first released there have been a couple of upgrades to iOS8 but, for me at least, problems continue, particularly around keyboards. Some of the issues I get you can see below but they seems to be concentrated around spotlight search and the messages app.

Now I don’t know if this is something that is only affecting me but I suspect not, so the question is why aren’t Apple dealing with it? The quality of this release is without doubt the worst of all that I have used so, I believe, that Apple need to concentrate to making … Read the rest

More iOS8 Keyboard Madness

So iOS 8.1 is released tomorrow and I really hope that there is a slew of fixes for the keyboard issues. This is the latest problem – a keyboard appearing over the home page:

image1Read the rest

Instagram’s Hyperlapse

Instagram, Facebook’s $1B lovechild, this week released a new iOS app called Hyperlapse that allows time lapse videos to be shot without the shakes that are usually associated with such videos.

I took a quick example on the bus into town yesterday and as you can see it is really steady. With hindsight I wish I had held the camera in landscape mode!

If all this sounds familiar that will be because Microsoft Research documented just such a technique earlier this year which got widespread attention including on the BBC. So congratulations to Instagram for getting this out so … Read the rest

Creating Good Looking Product Shots on Devices

A while back I wrote about what I described as “One of the most amazing websites” I had seen and it was great. Placeit allows you to create screen mockups by uploading a screenshot that is then rendered into a chosen device. Unfortunately when I went back recently the prices had sky rocketed. To download even the most basic image now costs $8 a pop and a “casual” plan is $29 a month. For someone that uses the service about once a year that was prohibitively expensive.

I should state at this point that I have absolutely no issue with … Read the rest