July 25, 2014

Free K-Days Admission Tonight

It's certainly not unusual for Edmonton to get some extreme summer weather during the last two weeks of July but with Environment Canada issuing wind and rainfall warnings many people have decided to avoid K-Days.  

But what's really unusual is that Northlands is offering free admission after 6 pm tonight (Friday) and has announced that despite the 70+ mm of rainfall, the Summerland Tour Concert scheduled for 8 pm at the Koodoonation stage will still happen and some of the rides and concessions on the midway are open. 

Unfortunately there wont be fireworks at 11pm and the grounds will be closing immediately after the conclusion of the concert so if you're not concerned about getting wet and want to enjoy a free concert you might want to check it out.

I might just head that direction for another bag of Mini Donuts.

for more information visit k-days.com 

July 14, 2014

They're Back: Ghostbusters returning to Theatres

If you didn't know already, 2014 marks the 30th anniversary of one of my favourite franchises, Ghostbusters.  The film was originally released June of 1984 staring Dan Aykroyd, Bill Murray, Harold Ramis and Ernie Hudson as paranormal investigators and eliminators in New York City.

It looks like Ghostbusters is heading back to movie theatres for a limited time at the end of August or beginning of September.  Here's a re-release trailer that was recently, um, released.

Enjoy this opportunity to see the unlicensed nuclear accelerators mess up the Sedgwick Hotel because there's still no news on the status of Ghostbusters III.  For years it seems the only thing everyone can agree on is that Dan Aykroyd is excited about doing a third movie while Bill Murray continues to distance himself saying he'd only be interested in doing it if the script was right. 

July 10, 2014

iTunes Extras now on Apple TV

With all the recent talk of Roku, Chromecast and other set top boxes that are gaining a lot of steam in a market that Apple called a "hobby" when they launched the first Apple TV in 2007, It's good to hear that Apple has unveiled a few enhancements today.

The first being the welcome re-addition of iTunes Extras for HD movies.  The bonus content of films used to be available on the first generation Apple TV but in 2010 when the second generation of Apple TV came out the feature was gone.  I'm thrilled it's back.

The second is that iTunes Extras have now been enhanced with iTunes 11.3 (also available today).  What this means exactly?  Well the bonus features for certain films has been overhauled and some additional content will be available.   Previous purchases will get upgraded, at no additional cost.

And third - Apple TV isn't the only other device that will take advantage of iTunes extras.  It looks as though Apple will be enable the extra content on devices running iOS 8 this fall.

How to access the iTunes Extra on Apple TV
The process is simple.  In fact, most Apple TV owners will figure it out as soon as they click Play to watch their favourite movie.  Instead of going right into the film, a new screen will appear that resembles the Main Menu of a blu-ray or DVD.   Here's what the Star Trek: Into Darkness Menu looks like now

While these could be easily dismissed as minor additions, it's still nice to see the Apple is making some changes, but more still needs to be done.  Apple has been trying to build buzz around their company with hints at 2014 being one of their biggest years but here we are 7 months in and aside from the addition of an entry-level iMac and minor upgrades to existing MacBook Airs there hasn't been anything that truly stands out.  Yosemite and iOS 8 will be great improvements, but most of it expected.

Rumours about a Retina MacBook and iMac lineup are circulating along with 2 sizes of iPhone 6. There's also a lot of talk about the still unannounced iWatch and ideas floating around that suggest Apple could move from a set-top Apple TV to a full blown television set with integrated Apple TV features.  Regardless... There's now less than 5 months left in 2014 and Apple better hit the gas.

June 25, 2014

Rumoured iPhone 6 Release Date

It appears that information regarding the iPhone 6 launch date has been leaked according to a number of websites.  Based on reports found on the Chinese web portal Tencent which claims inside sources have provided the information and aligns with other reports that a German wireless carrier had begun notifying customers when to expect the newest iPhone which hasn't even been announced by Apple.

The rumoured launch date?

Friday September 19, 2014

This date would seem to fall right in line with the release cycle Apple has been following for the last few years (as shown below).  Saying that the iPhone 6 will be out on September 19th certainly does seem like a safe bet even if it's just a rumour at this point.

iPhone 4S October 14, 2011
iPhone 5 September 21, 2012
iPhone 5C September 20, 2013
iPhone 5S September 20, 2013

The other rumours that seem to consistently be published relate to the size(s) of the iPhone 6.  Everywhere you look websites mention that there will be two choices - a 4.7 inch and 5.5 inch screen.  with the latter using Optical Image stabilization.  One final note is the storage capacity, it would seem that Apple will start with 32GB and 64GB models for the latest generation of iPhone.  Keep in mind, Apple often does go back a few months after each phone release and offer a smaller storage capacity in some markets and I don't think the iPhone 6 will be an exception.

I suppose I'll have to revisit this post in September, or whenever Apple decides to let the world know when the iPhone 6 will be available.

Sign up for Apple Camp 2014 Now

Once again, Apple retail stores are offering free workshops for kids ages 8-12 to participate in 3 sessions that each last 90 minutes.  During these sessions kids will learn how to make movies or create interactive books with their own content.  This year, Apple is offering 2 different workshops

Stories in motion with iMovie - campers will learn everything they need to create their own movies.  They will storyboard their ideas, shoot video and create an original soundtrack in GarageBand on a Mac.

Interactive Storytelling with iBooks - Campers will create their own interactive books.  They'll draw illustrations using an iPad, then add sound effects and Multi-touch features using iBooks Author on a Mac.

Spaces are limited and have already begun filling fast.  If you want to sign your aspiring Mac genius up for one of these workshops you'll need to do it ASAP.  For your convenience, click the appropriate link to the Apple site below and select your Province/State, Store and workshop you'd like to sign your kid up for

June 20, 2014

Apple Rumour Roundup

It's late and I've been up since 5:30 am so this post is going to lack any creative thoughts but today has been packed full of Apple rumours so I thought I would combine them all into one blog post with my perspective rather than regurgitate the information published on sites like Mac Rumors, 9to5 Mac and MacWorld - sites that I consider very credible sources of information.  So here we go...

iWatch will be fitness/Health focused
9 to 5 Mac reported that Apple had hired a number of Fashion, health and fitness experts a while back and Kobe Bryant's recent visit at Apple's headquarters have fuelled speculation that the iWatch will be extremely fitness focused.  While we have all heard that the iWatch will be capable of monitoring oxygen levels or blood pressure it seems that the wearable device could contain many more sensors for various things - including monitor the user's sweat.   The Wall Street Journal believes that Apple is working with a number of other pro athletes including Los Angeles Kings' Dustin Brown and an unnamed player from the Boston RedSox, among others.

Multiple styles of iWatch
While Apple has kept a the one-size-fits-all approach for a lot of things (with varying colour options on iPods)  It seems as though there could be several choices for consumers when it comes to the iWatch.  This is good for people who 1) want as many Apple products as possible; 2) Select a style that reflects the wearer as much as possible.  I've always gone for the round face watches - It would take some getting used to if I could only wear a rectangular or square face watch.  I'm not saying I wouldn't like it, its just that I do have my preference.  I also might want a metal strap rather than leather  - So it only makes sense that others would like the choices too.

October Release
Most people still seem to think that Apple will finally debut the iWatch in the Fall since we were all relatively disappointed that there was no announcement or hint of the iWatch coming sooner - although the continuity features including making/receiving calls on your iPad, or Mac was their way of saying it'll be happening on a wearable device too.  If it doesn't happen by the fall I am going to be pissed.  Rumours about a wearable device have been going around for over 1 year now and Apple keeps hinting that this is going to be a huge year for Apple.  So far they've quietly, rather silently with  No fanfare added an entry level iMac and did a minor refresh of the MacBook Air lineup.

In other words... Come on Apple!  I want more!