I might have to make this a regular feature. First finding online Physics lectures, now hooking up you up and coming musicians and producers. I’m cool like that.
Anywho, Coursera is working with the Berklee College of Music to offer up three free courses: Intro to Music Production, Intro to Guitar, and Songwriting. Enrolling is as simple as clicking the link and signing up. The semester starts October 16.
Did I mention they were free? Because they are.
Now go get schooled and learn you some music so you can drop some phat beats.
We’re you hoping to be the first cool kid on your block to rock some Dick Tracy style smartphone wrist action?
AT&T is now taking pre-orders for the Galaxy Gear, so you best get while the getting’s good. I don’t know exactly what that last sentence means, but continuing to read this is wasting precious time better spent on setting up your pre-order.
Expect to drop $299 on Galaxy Gear, and it should arrive sometime in October… Probably around the time the Note 3 drops… Because synergy. Yeah!
I like rugged!
Being able to use our delicate tech in challenging environments is becoming a very important topic for me. A 5″ screen is a lot of glass to potentially shatter while in the middle of a hike or out on a job site. Body Glove is offering up a new ShockSuit case for Galaxy S4 owners looking to add protection without adding a ton of bulk.
Shop Body Glove cases on Amazon!
This one almost flew under the radar.
Posted (quietly) today on Bump’s blog:
We’re excited to announce that the Bump team is joining Google!
Our mission at Bump has always been to build the simplest tools for sharing the information you care about with other people and devices. We strive to create experiences that feel like magic, enabled behind the scene with innovations in math, data processing, and algorithms. So we couldn’t be more thrilled to join Google, a company that shares our belief that the application of computing to difficult problems can fundamentally change the way that we interact with one another and the world.
As of right now, no changes are planned in how Bump works, and the same team will still be working on the app, just under the Google umbrella. Hopefully this will mean some cross-pollination of sharing services, as Google’s built in ANdroid offerings, even for NFC, are pretty lame.
No word yet on how much Goog spent on acquiring this popular service.
(via BUMP Blog)
Sometimes the cloud isn’t enough.
While I find it fantastically helpful to have a couple gigs up in the cloud, there are still times I need to have access to files locally. I might need files which are too large to wait for a download, or I might need to easily share files with a couple users around me. I might just be in poor coverage without access to WiFi. For as good as our cloud solutions have gotten, I find I often still resort to “sneaker-net” to move files back and forth between different computers.
This gets even more complicated when I want to interact with a file on a mobile device, especially those pesky iOS devices which lack proper file managers. You can’t just load up a movie file on an iPhone while out and about for example. Plugging your iPhone or iPad into a proper computer and dragging a file over without iTunes means that file wont show up in any of the apps on your iDevice. Sure, there are other workarounds, funnily enough using iCloud for instance, but none have the simplicity of a point to point transfer.
Kingston was kind enough to send over a MobileLite Wireless Flash Reader for me to play with. The dream of the MobileLite is to create a local wireless storage solution for multiple devices to utilize. Specifically up to three devices can log in and share the info on either an SDXC Memory Card or USB Flash Memory Drive.
MobileLite is a small grey/black brick about the size of two iPhone 5’s stacked on top of each other. It’s fairly light at 98 grams, and it comes with a USB cable to charge MobileLite using a computer or AC Adapter. Kingston also includes a MicroSD card adapter for those of you which pull Micro cards out of your phones, cameras, tablets, etc…
Continue reading “Review: The Kingston Digital MobileLite Wireless Flash Reader”
A digital lifetime ago, I used to co-host and co-produce a movie review show called Movies You May Have Missed. Each week we’d craft a video love letter to a film we wished had gotten more attention. We think we did our jobs well, with respect, and we were proud to stay spoiler free, assuming the film in question was “new to you”. We studied Fair Use to make sure we were operating within its bounds, and contacted lawyers who vetted our content. We loved these films, and wanted to share them with other like-minded cinema fans.
The problem? We used clips of the films in our discussion to illustrate things we liked about those films.
This meant Youtube was largely a non-starter. Every episode posted to that social network would get shot down in a hail of auto-copyright ID checks. We spent a significant amount of time fighting each one, with little support. Google’s tools for Youtubers are pretty hands off in regards to these kinds of claims. You’re guilty before you can prove yourself innocent. If you’re not already a big player and famous enough to make a lot of noise, you have little recourse to correcting those copyright strikes. We ultimately had to host episodes elsewhere just so people could see them. Even though we haven’t produced an episode in well over year, MYMHM still pulls in some small traffic from fans, last tally was over 350,000 channel views for August. On old content. None of it monetized, as most online rules for such behavior are draconian. Not only were we not allowed to profit from our hard work, even just to pay off our website hosting, we were barely free to even show people our show. The largest audiences were consistently denied us.
I continue to entertain bringing the show back some day, but our legal system has taken steps towards making that return even more unlikely.
TechDirt is reporting on a strange court case involving two incredibly obnoxious bloggers flinging abusive and stifling DMCA take down requests at each other. In previous cases regarding these types of filings, the MPAA has argued that Congress did not intend for filers to have to consider Fair Use when filing infringement take down requests. This would seem to be the whole point of Fair Use if you examine the laws surrounding our rights in interacting with copyrighted materials, unfortunately the courts reviewing this online squabble have sided with the MPAA’s arguments. This case between two people having an internet cat fight has now opened the doors for even more abuse of a vaguely defined set of protections for major media companies.
And this is why we can’t have nice things.
Techdirt also has a transcript of the court’s decision in PDF.
No really. We can learn more about science, physics specifically, for free. The California Institute of Technology, home to NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, is opening up a wealth of lectures from Richard Feynman on a variety of subjects. Pages and pages of lectures, and related scientific materials. The first section alone is broken into 52 chapters dealing with subjects like relativity, light, color, time, quantum theory, and sound. Enough reading material to keep us science-y geeks busy for weeks. I’ve already started chewing into his lectures on acoustics… Gonna learn me some sound…
Did I mention free? It’s free.
The Feynman Lectures on Physics
(pic courtesy CalTech, via Reddit)
There’s something to be said about a biting simple game mechanic being executed well. Some of my favorite games to play focus on one mechanic and hammer every piece of the surrounding experience to fit that mechanic. The indie gaming space is starting to really drive this point home in ways that larger developers and studios might be afraid to explore.
My new current obsession is ‘SuperHot’ a plot-less first person shooter which asks of you only a small understanding before throwing you into kill or be killed situations. See you have something of a super powered advantage over your enemies. Time slows to a crawl when you remain still, and speeds back up as you move. It’s like a heightened adrenaline backed perception of time. Like when people describe being in a car accident, their brains slow time down, yet the whole experience happened in the blink of an eye. SuperHot captures this dynamic beautifully.
As you move through maps, picking off generic red assailants, you have the advantage of taking a breath to line up your next shot, dodge an incoming projectile, plan your next move. Don’t think this means the game is easy however, as sometimes that caution will inadvertently line you up for a kill which will only happen once you start moving again.
SuperHot’s graphics are super simple, which I dig. It’s all about focus. You have to know instantly what you’re trying to accomplish. The game’s tone plays into this. Instructions are near non-existent. Objectives are delivered by flashing single words on the screen at a time. It quickly creates that “rat in a lab” feel I haven’t experienced since firing up the original Portal. That unknown quality. You’re doing something you have to do, yet you have almost no understanding as to why you have to. At once unsettling and darkly satisfying.
SuperHot was created during a 7 Day FPS challenge, and the developers have set up a Steam Greenlight Page to explore any interest in making a larger version of the game. In the meantime head over to SuperHot.com to give it a whirl for free!