Thursday Morning News

fantastical2-mac-screenshot-darkIn case you’re still not sure which size Apple Watch will suit you, or aren’t sure what combination of band and watch you want to go for, let me clear the air a little. Starting next Friday, April 10, you’ll be able to book try-on appointments at Apple Retail locations, to give you up to 15 minutes to decide which combo is for you.

That’s it for the good news. The bad news is, you’ll only be able to choose from the collections on the Apple Online Store — no mix and matching watch bands, which kind of nixes cute websites like mixyourwatch. Whether you actually want an Apple Watch is another question entirely.

Apple are planning to build an R&D center in Yokohama, Japan, with a slated opening date of sometime next year. A render of the four-storey building makes it look extremely futuristic, and like many recent Apple buildings and developments, will rely heavily on renewable energy for its needs.

“All 650 Members of Parliament (MP) in Great Britain will be given an iPad Air 2 and a laptop after the May election”, writes The Verge. Not some Surface tablet, or a laptop/tablet hybrid, an iPad Air 2. It’s kind of a pity the Air 2 will be superseded by a new model in approximately six months after British MPs get theirs, but that’s the way things work.

Fantastical 2 for Mac is out today, and it’s a big update. The best calendar app for the Mac is now much more than just a menu bar item, and comes complete with its own window like a real app. It’s more of a replacement for the built-in Calendar app now, only with improved natural language parsing, support for reminders and calendar events within the same app, as well as Yosemite-focused features such as the Today Widget, extensions, and even Handoff support between iOS and Mac. Six Colors has a brief look, otherwise there’s a more thorough review over at MacStories. Fantastical 2 isn’t cheap, at $50 on the Australian Mac App Store, but how much is your time really worth?

Filters for iPhone is exactly what it says on the tin. It offers over 800 photo filters and effects, transforming your images from so-so captures into simply processed shots. The effects all seem to be customisable, which is impressive, and 9to5Mac takes a closer look.

The Sweet Setup’s favourite OS X launcher app is Alfred. Spotlight does an OK job of launching your apps, but that’s about it. Alfred does so much more.

In case you’ve ever wondered what happens when your app finds itself as part of an Apple ad, Robleh Jama wrote up his experience over at Fast Company.

Despite what you may think about the new MacBook with just one port, it doesn’t matter. The Mac is a tiny percentage of Apple’s overall income, which means it doesn’t matter if the MacBook is a wild success or a massive flop.

I’m kind of glad my feed reader picked up on this article by Stephen Hackett claiming the black MacBook will be a future classic, because in my books, it already is. Sure, it wasn’t the first time Apple offered a portable in a range of colours. And sure, the design was exactly the same as the white MacBook. But compared to the white version, the black was so much cooler, you know?

Start the discussion at talk.appletalk.com.au