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Will gaming breathe life into live-streaming YouTube?
Earlier this week, YouTube rolled out their direct answer to Twitch, which they are calling YouTube Gaming – allowing gamers to stream their favorite games, watch highlights, and interact with the community. Powered by a new streaming platform, YouTube is hoping to become the world’s largest live gaming service. Check out YouTube Gaming right here!
A Dream Come True: Huge Lego Bricks for Building Real Stuff
A company called Everblock is producing a product that looks like a giant lego brick which can be used to build things in real life. Pretty cool! The Everblock system is a modular system of large “adult-sized” plastic blocks that stack on each other and lock together just like normal Legos. These blocks come in 14 different colors and three different sizes: full (one foot long), half (six inches), and quarter (three inches), and vary in weight from two pounds (full size) to a quarter pound.
As far as price, 18 of the 12” “full” size blocks costs about $125 and you can check it all out at http://www.everblocksystems.com/
The evolution of Major League Baseball logos
Major League Baseball has majority of their logos that, much like the classic stylings of the football (soccer) leagues of Europe, look really, really good and are seemingly timeless. Logo Design Love has a really cool GIF file that shows an animated walk-through of a bunch of MLB logos over the course of the years. This is definitely a case where I wish I could pause a GIF just to check out different logos at different years. It’s a great look at the changing styles through the past 10-12 decades.
Instagram and Landscape/Portrait Images
It’s here! We’re no longer constrained to square images only in Instagram. You are free to upload both portrait and landscape photos and video with Instagram’s latest app update.
Facebook Launches M, Its Bold Answer to Siri and Cortana
Facebook has launched their direct competitor to Apple’s Siri, Microsoft’s Cortana, and Google Now. It’s called “M” and it’s ready to help you with anything and everything that you would ever want to do. Think of it as your personal assistant who lives on Facebook. Maybe Facebook has plans to take it even further. As WIRED points out, Siri, Google Now, and Cortana are all tech-based virtual assistant services, but they say that “M is a hybrid. It’s a virtual assistant powered by artificial intelligence as well as a band of Facebook employees, dubbed M trainers, who will make sure that every request is answered.”
Compared with the advantages that Apple, Microsoft, and Google all have because they have platforms such as iPhone/Mac OS X, Windows, and Android/Chrome OS by which they can natively deliver their services. Facebook relies on the user to download an app or visit a website to access their assistant service. Facebook says that this is driving them to create the best and most incredible of all the competing services. Only time will tell.
It appears that at this exact moment, End of August, 2015, Facebook’s “M” service will only be available to a select few hundred users around Facebook’s HQ outside of San Francisco as the testing presses forward.
Canon Unveils the 35mm f/1.4L II, the First Lens with Blue Spectrum Refractive Optics
Canon has unveiled a brand new lens! At first glance it seems to be a competitor to the highly acclaimed and popular Sigma ART 35mm, but it is a second generation 35mm lens. Among the things that it boasts is something called “Blue Spectrum Refractive Optics” (BR optics).
Quoting PetaPixel: “Canon says BR lenses use a new optical technology in which SPECIAL organic material helps combat chromatic aberration in photos, resulting in higher image quality. The organic layer sits between two glass lens elements and refracts more blue light — historically one of the challenges of lens design — which helps to control color fringing.”
I would have to imagine that this lens is made to absolutely kill it with the large megapixel cameras in Canon’s arsenal, specifically the 5Ds and 5Ds R. This looks like it’s an amazingly sharp lens, that can focus on objects as close as 11 inches away from the front optic, has great control of flare, and is masterful with eliminating chromatic aberration, especially at the wide end of the aperture. It is available for the hefty price tag of $1,799 and can be found at B&H Photo.
AstroPad Mini Turns Your iPhone Into a Photo Editing Graphics Tablet
We had talked about AstroPad for the iPad a little while ago on the We, Geeks podcast. The good folks at AstroPad are up to it again with the newest app they offer called “AstroPad Mini”. This app will allow you to use your iPhone as a professional tablet for Photoshop. It essentially shows your computer screen on your iPhone and allows you to work within the framework of Photoshop’s UI and edit and touch up your image as if it was a tablet. I’m not so sure how well it would work with just your fingers, so you’ll definitely want to pick up a stylus. Astropad Mini does support all pressure sensitive styluses available for the iOS platform including products by Adonit, Wacom, Pencil, Pogo, and more. Of course, you can also pinch and zoom with your fingers to ensure you’re working with precision even on your iPhone display.
They have even included compatibility with the Apple Watch which will allow you to work with customizable shortcuts right on your wrist to make changes in Photoshop. The app is available for just $5 in the app store.
Adobe’s Mobile Photoshop Application will be Released in October
Several months ago, Adobe gave the world a sneak peek into a new mobile application they’ve been working on, codenamed “Project Rigel”. In the past, Adobe has released several editing applications like Photoshop Touch, and Photoshop Mix, but neither have been huge successes. Adobe hopes that Rigel closes the gap between mobile and desktop editing, offering technology like Content Aware right on our mobile devices. Check out the full story here!
The app is expected to be released in October.
Apple will host next iPhone launch Sept. 9
Earlier on Thursday, Apple sent out invites to their September 9th event, which was rumored for quite a few weeks. The invite simply says: “Hey Siri, give us a hint”. Apple is expected to announce their next generation iPhone(s), possibly new iPads, new Apple TV hardware, and maybe the iPad Pro, but it looks like that may be pushed back a few months.
Drone captures guy sunbathing on top of a wind turbine
A drone pilot named Kevin Miller caught something he never expected. While flying his drone up a giant wind turbine, Kevin caught a man sunbathing at the top! The turbine is about 200ft high, and the man atop doesn’t seem too concerned about the drone, and at one point waves at it. Kevin isn’t 100% sure who the man is, but assumes he’s possibly an engineer who works on the turbine. UPDATE: It appears that it was a napping monk?! Let’s hope that’s the case!