Apple Intros Updated OS X 10.10 ‘Yosemite’

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Apple today introduced the latest version of OS X, Yosemite, at the World Wide Developer Conference (WWDC), being held June 2-6 in San Francisco, CA.

Key new features include:

  • The UI has been streamlined, making it more iOS-like, but not a shocking change;
  • iCloud Drive is located within the Finder and lets you store any type of file and share it across devices;
  • Handoff lets you start an activity on one device and pass it to the other; and
  • Instant Hotspot makes using your iPhone’s hotspot as easy as connecting to a Wi-Fi network.

In addition to an updated UI, Yosemite features several key features that may have special interest to musicians: Continue reading

Can The New 12″ Microsoft Surface 3 Replace Both Your Tablet And Your Laptop?

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Microsoft today introduced the Surface Pro 3 — a lightweight tablet that they want to replace both your tablet and your laptop.

With the Surface Pro line, Microsoft has been trying to convince buyers that its ‘best of both worlds’ approach to hybrid tablets makes more sense than the Apple’s approach, creating best-in-class, dedicated tablet and laptop devices. Microsoft positions the Surface Pro 3 as a tablet + laptop that’s more powerful than an iPad and lighter than an MacBook Air:

Multiple processor, RAM and storage options intersect with a sleek design that, with a simple snap or click, transform the device from a perfectly balanced tablet to a full-functioning laptop and back again – all in a beautiful package that is 30 percent thinner than an 11-inch MacBook Air.

Its stunning 12-inch display and new, continuous kickstand provide the screen real estate and multiple viewing angles people need for work and play. And the new Surface Pen – completely redesigned with form and function in mind – delivers a precise, luxurious drawing and note-taking experience with a single click of the pen.

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New Mac Pro Starts At $2999 – Is It Worth It For Musicians?

new-mac-proApple today announced pricing and availability for the new Mac Pro line.

The updated Mac Pro features the latest Intel Xeon processors, with up to 12 cores, dual workstation-class GPUs, six Thunderbolt 2 ports, PCIe-based flash storage and ultra-fast ECC memory.

The new Mac Pro is priced starting at $2,999 (US) and will be available in December.

Check out the specs – and let us know if you think a $2,999 Mac Pro makes sense for musicians.  Continue reading

Apple iPad Air, iPad Mini Offer Twice The Performance

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Apple today announced iPad Air, the latest generation of its iPad line. The iPad Air is significantly thinner and lighter than its predecessors, while offering faster performance, faster networking and more free apps.

In addition to the iPad Air, Apple introduced a new iPad mini with Retina display and the same performance improvements.

The iPad updates are, arguably, incremental. But for mobile musicians, the series of incremental updates to the iPad over the last few years are starting to deliver a paradigm shift. GarageBand, for example, is free with the new devices and can handle up to 32 tracks.

Is that desktop power? No – but it’s still pretty impressive for a device that weighs a pound and can run wirelessly for 10 hours.

Here are the details: Continue reading

Monome Intros Aleph Open Source Sound Computer

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Ezra Buchla (son of Donald Buchla) and Brian Crabtree (monome) have introduced Aleph – a Linux-based open source sound computer.

It can be a synthesizer, sampler, looper or drum machine – or, because it’s open source, anything that you can develop for it.

Key Features:

  • soundcomputer – powerful audio processor, synthesizer, noise machine, rapidly modifiable instrument. a platform for experimental practice and organic discovery.
  • attachments – connect grid controllers, modular synths, midi keys, stomp boxes, gamepads, hand-made circuits. for more direct control and uncommon pairings.
  • topography – dynamically arrange control mappings with unprecedented flexibility. create software control sources such as modulators, logical operators, aleatoric processes, sequencers. all quickly storable and recallable.
  • open source – designed for community engagement, a benefit for musicians and developers alike. an exceptional educational tool. the library of uses and possibilities can only grow.

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