So it's Mother's Day weekend – and you know what we're thinking? Mom sure would love an iPad, don't you think? Of course she would. It'd beat the heck out of flowers. Again. For the tenth year in a row.
Granted, when our significant other, the mother of our child, gets a load out of what we got her for Mother's Day, well...let's just say someone around here is expecting a rather great Father's Day present. Like in the MacBook category. Okay, let's not talk about it anymore. We hate to ruin surprises. Speaking of surprises, you know what's not a surprise? That this weekend brings you a whole 'nother week's worth of the very best gifts of all – the talented writing of the Mac|Life crew.
- April's Highest Rated Reviews - We went through our incomparable archives of reviews and picked out the top products, gadgets, software, and apps. Thus, the circle is complete. This round-up, short-version article you're currently reading will point you to another round-up, short version article. We're getting all meta on you at Mac|Life.
- Prosoft Data Rescue 3 - Data loss. We don't even like to speak its name for fear of what that might entail. The loss of an entire digital album of photographs or that PowerPoint you just spent four hours revising. Prosoft Data Rescue 3 comes to the rescue, but be prepared to let it run a while to find your lost stuff.
- Star Trek D-A-C - We couldn't imagine what these people were thinking with this ridiculous name, then we tried playing this game and so much came clear. They weren't putting much thought into it at all. Nothing new to see here and laggy controls, but at $10, whattaya want anyway?
- Bruce Lee Dragon Warrior HD - For a game that actually kicks butt, literally, you can't go wrong with Bruce Lee. There's fighting, yes, but there's story, and slow-mo action to let you catch Lee's cocky expressions as he breaks the bad guys in two. Half the price of Star Trek D-A-C and about seven times the fun.
- Photoshop Too Pricey? Save $$$ with Gimp - Want to get your mom something awesome for Mother's Day but out of dough? Install this free open source Photoshop imitation on her computer and tell her you bought it just for her. Everything and more a novice photo tinkerer could want, Gimp is a feature-packed alternative whose only major weakness is lack of CMYK. And your mom'll doesn't even know what that means.
- How-To Cut Down and Set-Up a Non-AT&T SIM For Your iPad - So maybe you don't want AT&T but you do want an iPad. You won't get any 3G love with this solution, just the Edge network, but we were able to use our iPad to get online with no Wi-Fi using T-Mobile's network. All it takes are a T-Mobile data plan, your T-Mobile SIM, and steady hands to make a micro-SIM. Think you've got what it takes?
Lawsuits were making waves this week, what with Apple getting hit with a federal probe over just what is going on with the infamous section 3.3.1 of the SDK...and if that weren't enough, the Wall Street Journal claims that it's not just the SDK that's drawing the attention of the federales, but also the announced iAd program...in courthouse news of a more commercial kind, Nokia is taking Cupertino to trial for what they claim are some pretty serious patent infringement. Guess we know what Apple can do with that $40 billion, now, huh? Spend it on lawyers...speaking of going to court, here's one company that actively encourages you to break the law by jailbreaking your iPad to install their snooping software, which in and of itself is probably illegal to use and could wind you up in court.
Of course, we can think of better reasons to jailbreak your iPad, and number one with a bullet could be summed up in one word: Mario...for a bit more practical reason to jailbreak the iPad, there's always SMS which was left off for one reason or another...speaking of left off, we can't imagine why ABC thought customers would go for Wi-Fi only access to their app's streaming content, but they've corrected that "oversight"...because the iPad is pretty popular; according to Apple it's one-million-units-sold popular, which is a pretty big deal...which explains why it's so hard to find one of these babies in the Apple Stores nowadays....and the 16GB 3G version is the one that most users are plunking down their hard-earned dough to buy...although according to Yahoo's user stats, these iPad owners skew a bit toward the higher income brackets so "hard-earned" mileage may vary...and if you looked at the stats on this page, you can see what the iPad has done to the netbook market; in a word: crushed it...speaking of getting crushed, it looks like the iPad is slapping the Kindle around pretty hard these days too in the news category, and who can blame users for not picking up that glorious 16 shades of gray-scale...and to make you cry with these last two links of iPad abuse, we present you taking apart an iPad with real tools...and taking apart an iPad with the microwave oven, perhaps the dumbest in a long line of dumb videos we've seen and have yet to see.
And while the iPad may be unlocked and subscription free, you still have to deal with AT&T if you want your iPhone loving, and at least one analyst says Ma Bell keeps exclusivity through 2010...not that AT&T customers' blinding hatred of their carrier matters much to these people...nor the aching, longing, dying to have it feeling that Verizon's customers have for Apple's handset...the handset that at long, long last the U.S. Patent Office got around to granting to Apple the patent for...just about the same time that Apple surpassed Motorola as the number one handset maker in the United States...and speaking of patents, kids, looks like Cupertino's dreaming big with some new ideas that are pretty revolutionary, though not necessarily coming to your iPhone any time soon...and finally, we end on a video; yes, you can mock Apple (if your name is Jon Stewart), but Ellen DeGeneres seems to have gotten a little negative feedback from her recent bit of mockery. Jeez, Steve, lighten up, dude.