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Last month, Apple announced a 13″ MacBook Pro with Retina Display, an inevitability to replace the “previous-generation” 13″ MacBook Pro sans high-resolution display. While that old model remains available as a cheaper alternative for the holiday season, our guess is it will be completely removed from Apple’s lineup by the end of next year leaving not a single consumer-level Mac with an optical drive.

What started with the MacBook Air in 2008, and seemed like a crazy concept to an industry reliant on hard media, is now complete, four years later. With software distribution moving entirely to the web and entertainment increasingly being bought and stored in the cloud, the need for an optical drive is diminishing, right? (more…)

With the release of Windows 8, Microsoft has been far from subtle in its vision for the future of operating systems. Opting to radically change the default desktop to the same style as Windows Phone and the Xbox 360, Microsoft have changed up some of the fundamental aspects of Windows, as well as adopting new features like an App Store.

On the strike of midnight, October 26th, I bought my copy of Windows 8 and got it up and running on a MacBook Air. In this article, I’m going to share some of my initial impressions with the rival operating system, and compare it feature-by-feature to Apple’s latest OS, Mountain Lion.

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This post is part of a series that revisits some of our readers’ favorite articles from the past that still contain awesome and relevant information that you might find useful. This post was originally published on July 20th, 2011.

Over at iPad.AppStorm, Joel Bankhead wrote a fantastic article about what makes a great iPad app icon. It caught my attention, and really got me thinking about the differences between iOS and OS X app icons – Are the principles the same, or very different?

In this article, I’ll be having a look at what you should and should not do in order to make a wonderful OS X icon.

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Tweetbot for Mac was just released and the Internet, at least the geeky parts thereof, was on fire as a result of this, but not for the reasons you would expect. Indeed, networks like Twitter and App.Net were overflowing with mentions of Tapbots’ first Mac app. In most cases, thought, the discussion was focused on the pricing of the app, not so much on its features and merits.

As of the time of writing, Tweetbot will set you back $20, an admittedly premium price for a Twitter client. But isn’t a quality app worth something, at least?
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Apple introduced FaceTime on June 7, 2010, and released it with the iPhone 4 later that month. Later that year, Apple announced a Mac version of the service, but put it in beta and the final version was released in February 2011. People didn’t know what to think of this new way to communicate. Video chat was nice, yes, but most people use Skype, so what was the purpose of Apple’s own solution? To connect all Apple users with video chat, apparently.

The aim of FaceTime seems too simple, too limited. There wasn’t a lot of hype surrounding its launch because most people didn’t see themselves using it on a daily basis. What was this service lacking and what could it benefit from gaining? A few suggestions are available after the break. (more…)

This post is part of a series that revisits some of our readers’ favorite articles from the past that still contain awesome and relevant information that you might find useful. This post was originally published on September 21st, 2011.

I used to absolutely love menu bar apps. Years ago, it was a fairly tiny niche of the Mac app market that contained only a few really solid gems. These utilities provided a quick and easy way to control iTunes, run a quick maintenance script and get back to what you were doing.

At heart, menu bar apps were essentially thought to be little things that perhaps didn’t quite merit a full on application but still merited a permanent, always-on spot on your Mac. Things have changed though and I find myself becoming annoyed when I download an app and find that it has no alternative to the menu bar mode.

Should developers move past the trend of offering menu-bar-only apps in favor of giving users the power to decide? Let’s discuss.

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Editor’s note: The following article was not up to our standard editorial standards, and we’re very sorry about that. We’re doing everything we can to improve, and hope you continue to read our site.

Couple of months ago, a movie studio obtained a John Doe order and got a bunch of popular video sharing and torrent websites offline. I found this highly repulsive in two significant ways. First, they were retarded enough to leave YouTube from the list and got Vimeo banned instead. Raise your hands if you’ve ever watched a pirated video song or a movie on Vimeo.

And second, as a proud citizen of the largest democracy in the World, I found this a gross violation of my freedom and an extension of the Great Firewall of China. That’s not a proud title to wear around your neck. Such infringements occur time and again even in highly democratic countries.

Not knowing that there are so many ways to sidestep these stumbling blocks is a mistake from our end. One of the most efficient and trustworthy services I have discovered in the last year is TunnelBear. After the break, let us see how you can enter the open Internet by just flicking a switch!

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Ever since Chrome first came out for the Mac, I’ve been happy using it. Throughout all these years, I haven’t even had the curiosity to play around with other browsers, as Chrome has always been simple, pretty and functional enough to keep me satisfied.

However, when Mountain Lion arrived, Safari became a much more integrated part of the OS, with more integrated gestures, iCloud syncing, and the new sharing options. I finally just had to experience for myself. After a little more than a month using it, here are my impressions of the latest version of Apple’s browser.

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The Humble Bundle has become one of the most popular and longest-lasting software bundles ever. After releasing a number of Android-centric bundles that included Mac games as well, they’re back again with the 6th of their namesake Humble Indie Bundles. This time, for any price you want to pay, you can get 5 popular indie games, as well as their soundtracks, and can get an extra game for beating the average.

It’s quite the deal, one you’ll likely want to check out as soon as you can. This time, though, there’s a bit more than just the bundle.

But first, you might want to go grab a copy of the bundle before it expires in early October. We’ll wait. All set?

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In 2008, Apple kicked off the transition away from physical media. The lack of an optical drive in the MacBook Air eventually influenced the removal of it in the Mac Mini and, more recently, the next-generation MacBook Pro.

With all these Macs ditching their optical drive in order to achieve a thinner form factor, it’s time to take a look at which is better: disk or download? (more…)

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