On Mindfulness and Quality | Tools and Toys →

October 13, 2014 |

Chris Bowler:

The fact that our culture attempts to identify humans as consumers is a terrible reality. But if we all make conscious choices to buy quality items — ones we will use and ones that will last — and for which the human beings who are involved in the creation process are paid and treated appropriately, we’ll make this world a little better.

I’m really liking the new focus and direction of Tools and Toys.

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Tesla unveils new Model S with Dual Motor and Autopilot →

October 10, 2014 |

Fascinating stuff. The Model S can go from 0 to 60 mph in only 3.2 seconds. Even Musk himself joked about that in the video, at about the 5:20 mark:

In the option selection, you’ll be able to choose three settings, which is normal, sport and insane. It will actually say, insane.

Via Laughing Squid.

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Robin Wong reviews the Olympus M. Zuiko 40-150mm F2.8 PRO lens →

October 10, 2014 |

He seems to like it:

So is this M.Zuiko 40-150mm F2.8 Pro lens near perfect? It certainly is. I am scratching my head hard to find the flaws, which, honestly I dare say, is almost non-existent. The lens is incredibly sharp, capable of capturing amazing amount of fine detail, with almost no technical imperfections (well controlled Chromatic Aberration, distortion, etc). The bokeh quality is excellent, and handling with E-M1 (using HLD-7) is great. Focusing was extremely fast and accurate, with respectable close up shooting performance. You have all that in a pro lens, which is weather sealed against the elements, in much lesser size and weight than competition. Furthermore it is about 20-25% cheaper too.

Robin Wong is an Olympus Malaysia employee, so take these words with a grain of salt. That said, it’s hard to argue with some of the absolutely stunning images in this review:

Tiger, by Robin Wong

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Josh Ginter introduces himself →

October 10, 2014 |

So, with that said, I wanted to say hello — a true hello — for the first time. As The Newsprint grows and as I try new things, I want everyone to know there is a very average human being on the other side of this screen who merely hopes to impress you for about 30 to 90 seconds once a week. Here goes.

Refreshingly honest article, that all but confirms what we already suspected: that on top of being a great writer, Josh Ginter is a pretty decent human being.

Thanks so much for writing this, Josh. It takes a lot to put yourself out there and I, for one, am very glad that we got to know you a little bit better today. Hopefully one day we’ll get to introduce ourselves in person. I’d like that.

Here’s to more introductions, and more great writing.

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Pixel Art, a tribute to Hayao Miyazaki →

October 10, 2014 |

Beautiful tribute to Hayao Miyazaki’s work:

Via Kottke, who also suggests to check out the excellent 8-bit Ghibli:

8-bit Ghibli

This really brightened my day. I love Miyazaki’s work, and Porco Rosso is one of my favorite movies of his. I wasn’t expecting to run into it today on the Internet; perhaps this means it’s time to watch it again.

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Jason Snell on the need for a case with the iPhone 6 →

October 10, 2014 |

I’m with Marco. I have always appreciated using my iPhones as they were born, a naked robotic core with no adornment. And I’ve never dropped one. But I’ve been using an Apple iPhone 6 leather case for the last couple of weeks, and really liking it.

I’ve never used a case with any of my iPhones, but I’ve always used some sort of sleeve. I’ve only dropped my iPhone once in about 6 years, so I’m not terribly worried about protecting it from accidental falls. To me, casual protection from superficial damage — like scuffs and scratches, particularly on the screen — is more important. Besides, sleeves offer protection when you want it, and disappear when you don’t, which to me is the best of both worlds. I have always loved the way a caseless iPhone feels in my hand.

If you’re interested in trying one, here are some excellent iPhone sleeves:

  • The Apple iPod socks were perfect for all 3.5-inch iPhones (from the original iPhone to the iPhone 4S). They’ve since been discontinued by Apple, but you can still find them on Amazon.

  • I’m also a big fan of Sena Cases. The Sena UltraSlim Access leather sleeve is what I currently use on my iPhone 5S, and it’s gorgeous. I really like the texture of the fine leather, and it doesn’t add any bulk to the iPhone, which makes it great to carry in your pocket.

  • There are also versions of the UltraSlim for the iPhone 5C, as well as the iPhone 4/4S.

  • Finally, there’s the Heritage UltraSlim, which is specifically tailored to the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, and looks even better. If I had an iPhone 6 I would definitely be using one of these.

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Amazon to open first retail store in Manhattan →

October 10, 2014 |

Greg Bensinger And Keiko Morris, Market Watch:

The site, set to open in time for the holiday-shopping season on Manhattan’s busy 34th Street, would mark an experiment by Amazon to connect with customers in the physical world. Amazon has built its business on competitive pricing and fast shipping. Until now, though, it couldn’t compete with the immediacy of a traditional store.

Surprising move by Amazon. It will be a good way to get people to see Amazon’s products in a premium location, without being shadowed by other competing products. The Fire phone sure looks like it could use the help.

Beyond that, though, I’m not entirely sure how a retail store fits into Amazon’s bigger picture.

Perhaps they’ll use this brick-and-mortar location as a sort of gateway into their more established online business model. A high-end retail store would be a nice way to get even more consumers to trust Amazon: “See? We’re right here. You can buy online and if it doesn’t work out, you can come by and yell at us.”

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The Magazine is shutting down →

October 10, 2014 |

Glenn Fleishman:

The sad truth has been that, while profitable from week one, the publication has had a declining subscription base since February 2013. It started at such a high level that we could handle a decline for a long time, but despite every effort — including our first-year anthology crowdfunded a bit under a year ago — we couldn’t replace departing subscribers with new ones fast enough.

Sad news, no doubt. You can help them go out in style by backing their Year Two anthology book on Kickstarter.

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