Features

Anonymous's picture

Top 10 Apple Flops

   For a niche company that’s endured a pretty steady stream of criticism for more than three decades, Apple's track record is surprisingly strong. Even before the iPod transformed from an overpriced toy into the must-have gadget of the decade, Apple turned as many heads with its misses as its hits, crafting well conceived and constructed products that were sometimes overpriced, often overhyped and usually just plain ahead of their time. But, of course, nobody’s perfect: Missteps from our favorite company.

Anonymous's picture

The Canadian iPhone Waiting Game

 Canadians have been waiting for the iPhone to arrive since it was announced at Macworld 2007. Some Canadians refuse to wait for homegrown carriers to adopt the revolutionary device. Hell-bent on owning an iPhone by any means necessary, they've hacked, bartered and unlocked their way into possession and control of the coolest phone...well, ever. 

Anonymous's picture

The Top 10 Apple Movie Moments

  While it’s a pretty safe bet that Macs are starring behind the scenes of Hollywood’s greatest creations, Apple’s presence is strong on the other side of the camera, too, as PowerBooks, iPods, Cinema Displays and iPhones appear alongside Academy Award winners, sultry starlets and B-movie hacks. Over the years, Apple’s chic style has caught the eye of more than a few set designers, directors and writers, making for some memorable moments. Lights, Camera, Mac-tion! 

Free Your DRM Shackled Music

 With a little bit of work, you can create DRM-free versions of your iTunes music. Digital rights management (DRM) prevents a music file from being played by an unauthorized user or player. The recording industry thinks DRM is necessary to stop piracy, but as Steve Jobs put it in his February 6, 2007, public letter titled Thoughts on Music, “DRMs haven’t worked, and may never work, to halt music piracy.” DRM’s restrictions effectively do nothing but annoy the people who bought the music. Since Jobs’s letter, the iTunes Store has gone on to offer DRM-free songs, but the iTunes Store’s DRM-free library, called iTunes Plus, is limited (although always growing). If you already have a DRM’d iTunes song, you can pay 30 cents per song to convert to a DRM-free version—if one is available. Or you can create your own. 

Roberto Baldwin's picture

iPhone Apps Safari

 The final release of the iPhone SDK is quickly approaching. As we impatiently await new apps, the Mac|Life staff has been speculating on what apps are already in the works by some of our favorite companies. Tell us what apps you want for the iPhone and we'll call the developer and get the info.

 During the course of human events, it sometimes becomes necessary to bring the rock—and we cannot bring the rock without the hallowed tools of our trade. So we summon our guitars and amps, our boots and leather, our Pete Townsend windmills and Janis Joplin caterwauls. And now we also enlist our Macs—for they bestow furious powers of transformation upon those who seek rock star greatness. Yes, Macs are even more potent than cowbells. Consider the DIY career stylings of D’arby Rose, singer-guitarist of the As Ifs, a band that most certainly has the coolest name in the entire history of rock, ever. At the gravelly old age of 17, Rose has already produced all the must-have media assets that one would expect of a serious punk-rock frontwoman. She’s got the demo CD. She’s got the music video. She’s got the website with the obligatory music downloads and calendar of live appearances. And she, along with drummer Lily B, created all of this stuff with nothing but a MacBook. And we do mean nothing but a MacBook.  

Susie Ochs's picture

Get Free MP3s, Legally

  It’s pretty obvious where Apple wants you to get your music: the iTunes Store. And we’re not knocking it—we appreciate the simplicity and convenience of iTunes for buying songs, managing our collections, and loading up our iPods. But only looking for digital music in one place—even iTunes—is like only getting takeout from one restaurant, or only ever accessing the Internet through AOL. There’s just so much more out there if you’re willing to look around.

Anonymous's picture

 

The next time some hater tells you that “Mac gamer” is a contradiction, fire back with these best-ever Apple-platform titles. Sure, Apple’s systems have had their gaming downs; the short-lived Pippin had few worth playing, and the most fun we had on a Newton was “Find Elvis.” But the Apple II and Mac have had a vibrant ecosystem of games that stood out among all titles.

 

We had a hard time settling on 10. In no order, SimCity, Oni, Glider, Bolo, Crystal Quest, Out of This World, Deus Ex, Diablo, Civilization, The Secret of Monkey Island, Starcraft, Lemmings, Spaceward Ho!, Ultima, Myst, and World of Warcraft, were all significant but didn’t quite make the cut.

 

You’ll have a hard time finding copies of most of our top games. Some are available online , while eBay and local computer stores might carry old copies of others. But if you do have the floppies or CDs, the game isn’t likely to run in OS X. Try an emulator like Basilisk II to trick the old software into thinking it’s running on an old Mac or Apple II.

 

 One day, we wanted to watch one of our favorite DVD movies. We popped in into our DVD player, sat back on the couch, relaxed, and let ourselves get thoroughly into the action. Then it happened, and of course during a totally gripping scene: The movie playback suddenly got choppy, and then froze. Our DVD player was stuck, and we had to turn it off. When we ejected the DVD and flipped it over, there it was: a scratch deep enough to disrupt the movie, as well as put an end to our viewing experience. As versatile as DVDs are, the disc surface area is quite sensitive and prone to scratches that’ll render it unusable. If you have kids at home, chances are you’ve spotted your little ones enamored with the shiny discs and how they make great toys. Or maybe you’re just a little careless (unintentionally or not) with the discs. That’s why it’s a good idea to make backups of your DVDs.

Ray Aguilera's picture

  Truth be told, the necessity of the screensaver is behind us. Since CRT monitors have gone the way of the 12-inch Powerbook, most people don't need to worry about screen burn. Yet we still love screensavers. Why? Some of them do useful things. Others are pure eye-candy. Your friends couldn't care less about seeing TPS reports on your new Cinema Display, but fire up one of these cool screensavers and watch as everyone becomes mesmerized.