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April 25, 2017

Welcome to the Portal Pages

Welcome to my portal pages.  A full description of the capabilities of the 'ReadyPortal' software can be found at RedDog Software.  I hope you enjoy the discussions, polls and other functions.  If you have any things you would like to see implemented here let me know


Report: Apple poached augmented reality expert from NASA to work on glasses

All signs are pointing to Apple’s work on an augmented reality device of some sort, and now Apple has a new addition working on that effort: NASA’s Jeff Norris.

According to Bloomberg, Apple hired Norris away from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab, where he founded the Mission Operations Innovation Office, to work on its augmented reality products earlier this year.

jeff norris Jeff Norris

Jeff Norris testing Microsoft's HoloLens in microgravity environments.

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Today at Apple sessions aim to make Apple stores the modern-day town square

Move over, Starbucks. Apple wants to be the gathering spot for younger generations.

This week, Apple announced a series of educational sessions in all 495 Apple store locations around the U.S., starting in May. Titled “Today at Apple,” the hands-on sessions will bring together artists, photographers, and musicians at the top of their game to give customers tips on how to best use their Apple gear and software.

“‘Today at Apple’ is one of the ways we’re evolving our experience to better serve local customers and entrepreneurs,” Apple’s senior vp of retail Angela Ahrendts said. “We’re creating a modern-day town square, where everyone is welcome in a space where the best of Apple comes together to connect with one another, discover a new passion, or take their skill to the next level.

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Apple's first original series, Carpool Karaoke, delayed to later this year

In a blow to Apple’s original content ambitions, the company has delayed the scheduled April premiere of Carpool Karaoke to later this year.

In a strange move, Apple postponed the launch party for the full-length show, its first foray into original content, twice before canceling it altogether. According to Reuters, a party originally scheduled for March was rescheduled for Monday, but that party too was postponed.

Apple didn’t say why the series, an extended version of James Corden’s segments on CBS’s The Late Late Show, was being pushed back. A CBS Television Studios spokesperson told Reuters that the company is “excited about our Carpool Karaoke for Apple Music and look forward to everyone seeing it later this year.”

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iPhone 8 rumors: October launch date likely due to display issues, and analysts blame Samsung

We’d forgive the iPhone 7 for feeling a little under-appreciated, since it seems like all anyone can talk about these days is the next iPhone. After all, 2017 marks the iPhone’s 10th birthday, so Apple is reportedly gearing up to make its anniversary edition extra special.

We’ll keep track of the latest rumors and how plausible they are, and we’ll put them in one spot (this one!) so you can pop on over whenever you want to read the latest.

If you passed on the iPhone 7 to wait for the iPhone 8—or the iPhone 7s or whatever name Apple decides to use—it sounds like the next phone could be the design refresh you were waiting for. Just don’t expect the headphone jack to return.

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Get 42% off The Grillbot Automatic Grill Cleaning Robot - Deal Alert

If you're running out of ideas for Father's Day gifts, then consider this: The Grillbot. Grillbot is the first automated grill cleaning robot. Focus on your prep-work while it scrubs away in 10, 20 or 30-minute cleaning cycles. Grillbot has a rechargeable Lithium-ion battery, removable dishwasher-safe brushes, and works with virtually all grill types. Grillbot averages 4 out of 5 stars from over 145 people on Amazon, and its list price of $129.95 is reduced right now 42% to $75.28 in red (other colors are available and discounted as well) -- see the deal now on Amazon. If you need to dive a bit deeper before making the decision, read TechHive's review of the Grillbot here.

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Saving time: Always pre-judge Apple products

It’s never too early to judge an Apple product. They don’t have to be on sale, announced or even out of product development.

Writing for Investor’s Business Daily, Patrick Seitz says “Apple Prototype Smartglasses Giving Employees Eye Pain: Report.” (Tip o’ the antlers to Philip Speicher.)

While Gizmodo, the source of the report, focuses on how Apple’s injury reports can give you clues about what Apple’s working on, Investor’s Business Daily plays up the prototype causing injuries.

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16% off MOCACuff Bluetooth Wrist Blood Pressure Monitor, iOS/Android Compatible - Deal Alert

Place MOCACuff on your wrist and let it do all the work, measuring heart rate, systolic and diastolic blood pressure. Results are displayed on-screen with corresponding American Heart Association's blood pressure standards. A simple button press syncs results to your iOS/Android device. Receive expertly curated health recommendations via MOCACARE's app to improve or maintain your health, and visualize health trends and see how your health is improving over time. The device is FDA-cleared, CE certified and comes in a carrying case for convenience and portability. The typical list price of $77.74 has been reduced on Amazon 16% to $64.99, for now. See this deal now on Amazon.

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Sling TV expands its Cloud DVR 'First Look' to Apple TV

Sling TV is adding more devices to its 'First Look' for the new Cloud DVR feature. Sling TV subscribers with an Apple TV can now try the beta service for $5 per month, which gets you 50 hours of Cloud DVR storage.

Cloud DVR first showed up as an invite-only beta last December on Roku devices and select Smart TVs. At the time our general impression was that it was a nice feature, but still a work in progress.

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The Jackbox Party Pack 3 review: A modern-day ‘You Don’t Know Jack’

In 1995, You Don’t Know Jack set a new standard for what a multiplayer trivia game could be on a computer. At the dawn of multimedia, players sat around a Mac, listen to trivia question presented by a snarky-yet-appealing announcer, and then wildly stab at their respective keys on the keyboard to submit their answers, generally while laughing out loud and insulting each other at the same time.

This tradition lives on in Jackbox Games’ Jackbox Party Pack 3 ($25, available in the App Store), wherein up to eight players can compete against each other in five assorted games (Quiplash 2, Guesspionage, Trivia Murder Party, Tee K.O., and Fakin’ It). To start, the player launches the game on their Mac while each player (host included) logs into the website via their smartphone or tablet, chooses a user name, provides the four-character room code ID assigned by the game, and joins the round.

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How to upgrade an old iPhoto library to Photos (or recover it)

Reader Celia Drummond had a Mac crash so severe, she had to upgrade her system from Mavericks to El Capitan—I didn’t ask about Sierra—although she was able to recover her data from Time Machine.

However, after using the iPhoto Library Upgrader, Apple’s recommended path for converting iPhoto 7 and earlier libraries to a newer format that iPhoto 8 and 9 can use, “The result is photos a fraction of their original size—most were between 1MB and 7MB each—and all are pixelated.”

I never used the utility, so I don’t know what went wrong, but something did if that’s the outcome, or something is missing in the Time Machine backup. Because she can’t run the older version of iPhoto, she can’t simply rebuild the library, which is the usual suggestion. (I’d make sure you had version 1.1 via the link above, as older versions are out there, too.)

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Goal Zero Yeti 400 Portable Power Station review: Reliable power for your RV or campsite

Goal Zero specializes in portable batteries, totable solar panels and 12-volt lighting hardware. Last March, while preparing to live full-time in our 35-foot motorhome, I picked up one of the company’s Yeti 400 Portable Power Stations ($460) and a pair of Nomad 20 Solar Panels ($200 each). After employing them on a regular basis for over a year, I’m ready to share my thoughts on whether or not the Yeti 400 is worth its asking price.

The Yeti 400 Portable Power Station is designed to be a one-stop portable power solution. Given its compact size, 10.25 by 8 by 8 inches, you’ll be surprised to find that the Yeti 400 weighs close to 30 pounds. Much of this weight can be attributed to its 396Wh ATM Lead Acid Battery and Pure Sine Wave inverter—but its tough overbuilt case gets some of the blame too.

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Finsix Dart-C charger review: Tiny, powerful, and worth the expense

If you accidentally left your USB-C laptop charger during a layover at Batman Airport (yes, it’s real), consider yourself lucky, because you now have an excuse to upgrade to a much sexier, much lighter power brick, like the Finsix Dart-C (available for preorder for $99.99).

I can’t confirm Finsix’s claim that this is “The World’s Smallest Laptop Charger,” but damn, is it small (approximately 2.5 x 1 x 1 inches) and it punches well above its weight.

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Amazon Will Comp You A Dash Button When You Buy 2, and Then $4.99 Once You Use It - Deal Alert

This deal on Amazon will net you 2 Dash Buttons for the price of 0, making this a no-brainer if you've been thinking about trying Dash out. Right now if you buy two Dash Buttons, Amazon will give you one of them for free, and then a $4.99 credit the first time you actually use it (list price on a Dash Button is $4.99). Amazon Dash is a simple Wi-Fi connected gadget that lets you order your favorite things with just the push of a button. Keep it by your washing machine, your pet food, or in the bathroom closet. When you notice you're running low, just press the button and Amazon ships it right out. Each button gets tied to a specific product from Amazon's library of over 300 brands, in categories such as (click each category to see samples) household supplies, beverage & grocery, health & personal care, beauty products, pets, kids & baby, and more. Access this deal on Amazon. 

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42% off Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Wildlands - (XBOX ONE, PS4) - Deal Alert

Today you'll see the price drop an extra 42% on Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Wildlands. Experience total freedom of choice in Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Wildlands, the ultimate military shooter set in a massive open world setting.  The Santa Blanca drug cartel has transformed the beautiful South American country of Bolivia into a perilous narco-state, leading to lawlessness, fear, and rampant violence. With their corrosive influence growing, the cartel plagues the citizens of Bolivia but all hope is not lost. The Ghosts, an elite US Special Forces team, are tasked to combat the cartel and save the country from collapse.  See the discounted Ghost Recon Wildlands on Amazon.

To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here

Get 20% off BeatsX Wireless In-Ear Headphones - Deal Alert

BeatsX wireless in-ear headphones are currently discounted 20% on Amazon. BeatsX features Fast Fuel charging (5 mins of charge = 2 mins of playback), multiple tips for a personalized fit, and seamless setup & connection with iOS devices via class 1 Bluetooth. The public list price of $149.95 on Amazon will be reduced to $119.99 when you add the item to your cart. See the discounted BeatsX wireless in-ear headphones now on Amazon.

To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here

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Personal Opinions and Rants
FBI wants legislative fix on device encryption -FCW

What are these morons thinking? They could possibly make it illegal for Manufacturers to make phones with strong encryption for sale in the US. That would result in the ability for the Government and Law enforcement to spy on US Citizens leaving them still unable to to see data from foreigners and offshore terrorists. Get [...]

Review: The iPhone 5S really is the best iPhone yet - Computerworld

Review: The iPhone 5S really is the best iPhone yet - Computerworld With cutting-edge architecture, a better camera and a motion coprocessor, the 5S offers a lot of hardware for the money

Homeland Security: Hackers Love Android

The Department of Homeland Security is warning that Google’s Android OS is a major target for hackers and represents the single largest target for security issues having 79% of the malware for mobile platforms targeting Android. By contrast Apple’s IOS has only 0.7% of the malware focused on trying to exploit that much more [...]

Obama WhiteHouse Dinners $5000/Person!

Wow, $5000 a plate dinners hosted by the Obama’s on the Taxpayers dime. This is exponentially more than any other President in History. Perhaps this explains the need for tax increases Obama is pitching for.

In any case, clearly Barrack and Michelle are NOT one of us.  Dig in Mr. President the taxpayers are [...]

Obamas Failed Wealth Redistribution Goals

A Recent Letter to the Editor of the Daytona Beach News Journal. (Oct 4th)

Wealth redistribution a failure Barack Obama is the self-proclaimed middle-class advocate and defender.

Yet on Obama’s watch, for the first time since the Franklin Delano Roosevelt presidency: 1) the middle class has shrunk, 2) the median income of the middle class has decreased and [...]

Microsoft Unveils Logo For Windows 8

Microsoft has unveiled the logo for the next version of Windows. Consistent with prior versions of their Operating System and other products; the software giant has spent more time ruminating about the pointless than the important. I find it fascinating that they would pre-announce the logo along with a stream of drivel seeking [...]

Apple unveils Mountain Lion OS X Preview

Apple unveils Mountain Lion Preview: iOS-ification of OS X continues with Messages, AirPlay Mirroring, Notification Center, Game Center, Twitter and more | 9to5Mac | Apple Intelligence

The Macintosh platform continues to evolve in ways that make it easier to work across multiple devices (iPhone, iPad, Mac) and serves as a guidepost for Microsoft to develop versions [...]

10 Incredible Stats From Apple Q1 Earnings

Ever wonder why everyone seems to have an iPhone and an iPad?

10 Incredible Stats From Apple’s Q1 Earnings

Why Android updates are a mess: its the business model | ZDNet

Ever wonder why the most tech saavy of your collegues use an iPhone or chose the iPad over 10 to 1 over the abundance of Android based tablets available today? It’s because despite the fact they are technically capable of getting applications (as opposed to malware) from the Google Market and the fact they [...]

Dubious about investing in Facebook? You are not alone.

Having worked at Netscape in the Internet bubble, I have a natural pessimism when it comes to Internet pure play stock valuations. Duff McDonald at Fortune Magazine also shares my perspective and has a pretty good writeup on his reasons the discussed valuations of Facebook are interesting but probably not realistic.


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Marketplace Report - APM

Browse the latest stories from and all of our Marketplace radio programs
04/25/2017: Most of Wells Fargo's board could be saying good-bye soon
With major market indexes up, economist Lindsey Piegza joins us to talk about the psychology behind those increases. Investors are optimistic about the pro-growth policies Trump has proposed, like a 15 percent corporate tax rate, even if they haven't come to fruition. Next we'll look at a possible source of tension between farmers and Trump over his proposed regulatory policies —strict immigration rules and a tamp down on free trade might not bode well for the agricultural industry. And finally, we'll look at the potential for more high-level fallout at Wells Fargo following its false accounts scandal — big pension funds are pushing for most of the 15-member board to go.
Trump administration hits Canada with new tariffs
Chipotle is hoping to put the 2015 E. coli scandal behind it
Farmers bring their shopping lists to the White House
Why women and men view the economy differently
A new Marketplace-Edison Research poll finds a persistent gender gap.
The main differences between internet privacy in the US and the EU
In Europe, privacy laws are a 'starting point' instead of a secondary principle.
We're almost at 100 days. What is Trump's approval rating?
The majority of Americans give thumbs down to the president's first three months in office.
A key Trump administration goal is securing trade agreements
Rep. Brady on tax reform: 'We're going to get this done this year'
The chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee believes the government won't shut down Friday.
Sherry Lansing on the next 'chapter' of her career
After leaving Paramount, she followed another passion — philanthropy.
Tesla skips prototype phase to get Model 3 to market faster
Economic anxiety has eased in the U.S., unless you're a millennial
People feel like they're on the "razor's edge" when it comes to health care, says Larry Rosin of Edison Research.
04/24/17: AAA wants in on the ride-sharing game
Stock prices are surging in Europe following the first round of election results in France. We'll take a look at why exactly investors are excited about the possible winner. Afterwards, we'll chat with Larry Rosin, the president of Edison Research, about the latest results from our Marketplace-Edison Research Poll. One major source of anxiety for Americans? Having proper health care coverage. And finally, we'll talk about AAA's attempt to lure younger members by wheeling out a new ride-sharing company called "Gig."
Staid AAA hopes to get a lift from car-sharing
Manufacturing can help itself by hiring more women, study says
The word 'Trump' may be shifting our ideological attitudes
Some of the latest findings from our Marketplace-Edison Research Poll highlight the prevalence of party lines.
You think Washington has 'forgotten' you — and it doesn't matter what party you're in
As we approach the president's 100th day in office, Americans tell us they are less anxious about the economy. But, there's still a disconnect, according to our latest Marketplace-Edison Research Poll.
Weekly Wrap: How far do Trump's executive orders go?
Six things you need to know about the possible Hollywood writers strike
TV and movie writers are fed up with declining pay as media companies make huge profits.
Dairy woes rattle U.S.-Canada relationship

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Last updated: September 8, 2008