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About Lewis Wallace

Lewis WallaceLewis Wallace is a San Francisco-based writer and editor specializing in technology and culture.

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Lust List: Heartache is in the (stolen) bag, plus audio gear and more

Mikme wants to fix your iPhone’s audio problem

Mikme

The tiny Mikme wireless microphone is designed to capture great audio quickly and easy.

SAN FRANCISCO — While other people were crapping their pants or scratching their heads during the Apple Music unveiling, Philipp Sonnleitner was having an “aha!” moment.

It happened right after Apple took the wraps off of Connect, the social element of Apple Music designed to let artists share intimate moments with fans, from backstage video and unreleased tracks to private performances from couches anywhere in the world.

“You saw the Apple Connect?” Sonnleitner, CEO and founder of Mikme, asked during the getgeeked tech showcase here during Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference. “We have the tools!”

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With its little life preserver, UE Roll is the perfect summer speaker

The UE Roll didn't float, so it comes with an itsy-bitsy life preserver (if you order direct).

The waterproof UE Roll doesn’t float, so it comes with an itsy-bitsy life preserver (if you order direct).

SAN FRANCISCO — Not content to conquer the Bluetooth speaker market with tubes and bigger tubes, Ultimate Ears made its latest portable audio device look like a lily pad. They made it waterproof, too. The only problem was, the UE Roll sank like a stone.

“As life would have it, it doesn’t float,” said Rory Dooley, Ultimate Ears’ senior vice president, during a visit to the Cult of Mac headquarters.

The solution? Create a tiny life preserver for the UE Roll, and give it away to anybody who orders the hottest speaker of the summer directly from UE’s website (while supplies last).

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Speed through Apple’s WWDC 2015 keynote in less than 3 minutes

What was Tim Cook's "one more thing" at WWDC 2015? Find out in less than three minutes with Cult of Mac's keynote supercut.

What was Tim Cook’s “one more thing” at WWDC 2015? Find out in less than three minutes with Cult of Mac’s keynote supercut.

Not everybody has two-and-a-half hours to watch an Apple event. Tim Cook and crew delivered tons of updates at the kickoff for this year’s Worldwide Developers Conference, and you can speed through all the news with this WWDC 2015 keynote supercut.

It’s just two-and-a-half minutes long!

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Kahney’s Korner: Why I can’t wait for Beats 1 radio

Kahney's Korner Beats 1

Find out why Leander hopes Beats 1 is as cool as BBC Radio 1 in this week’s Kahney’s Corner.

Why is Leander super-excited about Apple’s new Beats 1 radio service?

It’s simple, really: For him, listening to BBC Radio 1 was possibly the greatest thing about growing up in England in the ’70s. More importantly, it’s still how he discovers loads of new music today — and Apple’s 24/7 live internet radio station promises that same kind of magic.

Get the lowdown in the latest Kahney’s Korner video.

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Father’s Day gift guide: 9 ways to make Dad’s day

Any of these great gifts will make Dad's day.

It’s time to get serious about getting Dad a great gift for Father’s Day.

Tick tock! Time’s running out to find the perfect gift for your Dad! Let Cult of Mac’s Father’s Day gift guide take all the hassle out of shopping for pops.

From Apple and audio gear to outdoorsy stuff that will be sure to bring a smile, we’ve rounded up thoughtful gifts at price points high, low and in between to make Father’s Day gift-hunting as painless as possible.

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#ProTip: One simple secret for designing better things

Dave Wiskus thinks many designers are in need of an attitude adjustment.

Dave Wiskus thinks many designers are in need of an attitude adjustment.

#ProTip: One simple secret for designing better things Cult of Mac is at WWDC and AltConf, fishing for ProTips. The world’s biggest gathering of Apple developers is a rich hunting ground filled with alpha geeks, experts par excellence. What’s a ProTip? A ProTip is a nugget of knowledge, a little bit of expertise from someone in the know — a pro.

SAN FRANCISCO — Designers can be a picky bunch, always ready to pick apart a colleague’s creation or slap down an idea with some withering snark.

But interaction designer Dave Wiskus is prescribing an attitude adjustment for his fellow creative types, especially those who seem to be engaged in some sort of bitchy competition to come off as the smartest person in the room.

“Just say no to cynicism,” he said Thursday during his talk at AltConf here. “It’s the enemy of everything.” (You’ll also want to avoid irony, sarcasm and passive aggression, which Wiskus called “gateway drugs” that can lead to full-on cynical addiction.)

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Repeat this simple mantra if you want to make killer Apple Watch apps

Joe Cieplinski, a designer with Bombing Brain Interactive, shares his knowledge about design at AltConf 2015.

Joe Cieplinski, a designer with Bombing Brain Interactive, shares his knowledge about design at AltConf 2015.

SAN FRANCISCO — The key to crafting great Apple Watch apps can be summed up with a simple mantra: “Make the user happy.”

That’s designer Joe Cieplinski’s approach to all design, really, but the precept is even more important than ever for developers making apps for Apple’s new wearable. Instead of attempting to cram all the features of an iPhone app onto that tiny screen, devs need to focus as much on what they leave out as what they include.

“That’s how you get a successful product,” Cieplinski, who works for Philadelphia-based Bombing Brain Interactive, told Cult of Mac after his AltConf panel here Tuesday. “It’s not just trying to be philosophical.”

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Apple Music puts a human face on the mess that music’s become

Jimmy Iovine talks up Apple Music at WWDC 2015.

Jimmy Iovine talks up Apple Music at WWDC 2015.

Apple’s big idea for transforming the way we experience music is bringing a personal touch — and a simple, unified platform — to the tangled technological mess that music’s become in 2015. Apple Music is classic Apple: putting a human face on technology that threatens to overwhelm us.

Tim Cook brought out high-profile artists, and Apple’s team of industry insiders, to show off what he called “the next chapter in music” today at the Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco.

“I know your are going to love it,” Cook said, introducing Apple Music. “It will change the way that you experience music forever.”

Here’s what Apple Music will bring to your ears.

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Apple Music’s recipe for a streaming hit? Cash, cards and marketing muscle

Sony Music CEO Doug Morris says Apple Music is "happening tomorrow."

Sony Music CEO Doug Morris says Apple Music is “happening tomorrow.”

When Apple unveils its revamped music service Monday, it will mark a “tipping point” for mass acceptance of streaming over downloads, predicts Sony Music CEO Doug Morris.

The new streaming service, which Morris says will be unveiled tomorrow at Apple’s annual Worldwide Developers Conference, will challenge on-demand streaming services like Spotify and Rdio thanks to a very particular set of skills Cupertino has acquired over the years.

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