Earth Hour

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Wacom Announces the Inkling Digital Sketch Pen

Wacom has just announced a digital sketch pen that will allow you to capture what you draw or write on any piece of paper in digital form, "stroke by stroke".  
The new product named Inkling is comprised of the hardware and a software.  The hardware include the pen and a receiver that will capture your sketch and then store it digitally,  Clip the receiver on the edge of a piece of paper and adjust it to make sure it has a direct line of sight with the pen, you're ready to go.  When you're finished sketching, just connect the receiver through the USB to transfer your files.

Files are opened with the proprietary software from Wacom to edit, delete or use layers on your sketch.  However, you can also store your files in JPEG, TIFF, BMP or PDF and then open with software that supports these formats.  

The Inkling can store thousands of your sketches.  You can also use the included software to export your files to Adobe Photoshop or Illustrator to refine your sketches even more.

I love sketching and doodling so I am very interested with this product.  It will come out in mid-September in the US and will be priced at US$199.

(all images from

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Apple Releases iTunes Match on Beta for Developers (UPDATED)

Apple released today a developer beta version of its upcoming iTunes Match.  Steve Jobs already announced this service during his introduction of the iCloud at the WWDC in June.

As explained by Apple, the system "stores your complete music library in iCloud, allowing you to enjoy your collection anywhere, anytime, on any iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch or computer."


iTunes Match will scan your iTunes music library and checks which of these songs are available in the iTunes Store.  It will include music you bought from the store, ripped from your CD collection, and even those obtained from other sources.

The company boasts of more than 18 million song titles in its catalog so most likely, the songs you have in your collection are already available.  Otherwise, you will have to unload those unavailable to iCloud.  You can then listen to your music anytime, anywhere at 256 kbps iTunes Plus quality,  as long as you are connected to the Internet.

At US$25 per year, the service will allow you to free a lot of space on your devices since you won't need to store your music on your iPad, iPod Touch, or MacBook to enjoy them.  At the moment, only developers have access to this feature and those who would participate in the beta testing will have a bonus of three months free access to iTunes Match.  It is set for release in the fall alongside iCloud.

UPDATE 9/1/11:  Apple vehemently denies that iTunes Match will stream music to your devices.  Initial reports from Beta testers seem to confirm this. It appears that once you listen to your music via iTunes Match, it automatically downloads and stores then to your iPad, iPod Touch or Mac.

Monday, August 29, 2011

The 65th Orchid Show

We were at the 65th Orchid Show sponsored by the Philippine Orchid Society yesterday.  Perhaps because of the inclement weather, there were very few exhibitors in this year's show.  There were the usual cattleyas, tiger orchids, bonsais and other stuff that have been displayed before.

Below are some of the pictures I took at the show yesterday.

There was also a tiangge where one can buy plants and other garden ornaments and implements.  I wanted to buy one of these terracotta Buddha heads but I still need to fix the garden at home.

I know it's still too early for this jolly guy to make an appearance but I snapped a picture of him anyway.

The 65th Orchid Show will run until September 5 at the Quezon Memorian Circle in Quezon City.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Surprise! Superman Loses his Red Briefs in New Movie

Superman will have a new costume in the new movie, Man of Steel. From this photo I stumbled upon on the Internet, noticeably absent is the iconic red briefs/trunks! In its place is one that is in a darker shade of blue.  

I wonder how fans will react to this.  But searching for more photos, I saw this poster below.  I am not sure if this is an official poster but again, take note of Superman's suit.  It has scales!  

Hmmm... Is this reboot up to something?  Will they make the Man of Steel a half brother of Aquaman?  I won't be surprised since its director, Zack Snyder came up with what could be the strangest movie this year, Sucker Punch.

In what could be another step away from tradition, Daily Planet Editor-in-Chief Perry White becomes a black man! Indeed, the cigar chomping boss of Clark Kent and Lois Lane will be played by Laurence Fishburne.  He becomes the first African-American actor to play the iconic role.

I want to see how all of this will look like.  Man of Steel arrives in theaters in June 2013.

(all images came from various sources on the Internet)

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Steve Jobs resigns as Apple CEO

The biggest news of the day in the techworld is the resignation of Steve Jobs as Chief Executive Officer of Apple.  Tim Cook who has heretofore served as Chief Operating Officer has been elected as Jobs's replacement.  Don't be sad though, Apple fans. Steve will stay on with the company as its "Chairman of the Board, director and Apple employee."

In his resignation letter addressed to the Apple Board of Directors and Apple Community, Jobs wrote "I have always said if there ever came a day when I could no longer meet my duties and expectations as Apple’s CEO, I would be the first to let you know. Unfortunately, that day has come."  

The online community believes that it has something to do with his health.  Jobs filed a medical leave of absence in January this year but has made an appearance at the WWDC in June to introduce the upcoming iCloud service.  He was also present during the event to introduce the iPad2 earlier this year.  In 2004, he took a 6-month leave of absence and underwent a liver transplant.

Although the shares of the company dived by as much as 7 percent after the announcement, industry analysts believe that the company will continue to dominate the IT industry under the helm of Tim Cook who has been considered heir apparent as Apple's top man.

Under Jobs stewardship, Apple released some of the most innovative products in the industry.  These include the iconic iPod and its companion application, iTunes which revolutionize the way we listen to and buy our music; the iPhone which raised the bar on what a smartphone should be; and of course the iPad, which still in unrivaled in the tablet industry.

Many IT experts also believe that the company will go ahead with Steve's plans for the company's hardware and software projects.  The iPhone 5 is scheduled to be released next month and the next generation iPad is expected to come out in 2012.  The iCloud service and the next iteration of the iOS is also due to debut this fall.

Steve's resignation letter is available here.

Monday, August 22, 2011

HP Touchpad Knocked Out of Tablet War

Industry giant HP announced last week that it will discontinue production of its tablet, HPTouchpad.  Apparently, not even Manny Pacquiao could save the gadget from being knocked out by its competitors.

The tablet went on sale only last June and is already being discontinued as part of a major restructuring of the company.

The tablet suffered from poor sales. BestBuy reportedly sold only 10 percent of its stock in the last few months.  Industry analysts point to lack of applications as one of the reasons the hardware didn't take off.  Aside from this its platform, the WebOS which the company acquired from Palm, trailed behind those of leaders' Apple, RIM and Nokia.

According to news on the Internet, the HPTouchpad is now being sold at a fire sale price of US$99.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Macau Tour Packages On Sale at SM Marilao

If you're making plans for a vacation or a trip during the long weekend at the end of this month, why not consider a trip to historic Macau.  Now is the perfect time to do so as SM City Marilao and the Macau Government Tourism Office join hands to promote picturesque Macao through a sale of tour packages to the city.

Simply visit SM City Marilao’s Macau exhibit area at the Mall Atrium from August 12 to 14, 2011 and get a big discount on the ‘On Sale Macau Travel Packages’ promo. Be one of the lucky first 25 booked on the spot customer of the day to get a special Macau gift pack from MGTO - Philippines.

There will also be a display of different tourist spots showcasing the beauty of Macau.  So visit SM City Marilao for huge discounts, special gifts and experience Macau.