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About Nicole Martinelli

Nicole Martinelli Nicole Martinelli heads up Cult of Mac Magazine, our weekly publication available on iTunes. You can find her on Twitter and Google+. If you're doing something new, cool and Apple-related, email her.

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This Week In Cult of Mac Magazine: Tech & Compassion

Cover design: Rob LeFebvre.

Cover design: Rob LeFebvre.

Compassion and Tech go hand in hand in this week’s Cult of Mac Magazine.

We’re all supposed to be better people around the holidays. Unless we happen to be a hackathon dude who fires off a Facebook rant about how San Francisco is filled with human trash. 

And, sure, you can delete that stupid stuff. But that same technology that enabled you to quickly air your most callous, thoughtless opinion won’t take it back that easily. His subsequent apology did little to smother the flames about how tech needs better PR to convince the world we aren’t the philosophical disciples of Charles Montgomery Burns.

That’s why Facebook is considering a compassion button – so in this case you could sympathize with your hackathon pal for his complete lack of empathy for the homeless? – for example.

This week, Cult of Mac reports from the front line of digital companies and nonprofits with heart and soul from Stanford’s inaugural Technology and Compassion Conference.  The idea behind it is to bring things like mood trackers and compassion training to our iPhones, so we act like jerks a little less. And the world will thus becomes a better place…

We also bring you the best new books, music and movies in iTunes and apps in the store as well as the inside scoop from the behind the counter with our Ask a Genius Column. ‘Cause we’re generous like that.

Cult of Mac Magazine in iTunes.

This Week In Cult of Mac Magazine: Travel Smart With Your iPhone


Cover design: Craig Grannell.

The iPhone is a great travel tool, but making your smartphone travel actually smart isn’t about packing it up with dozens of apps you never use or that won’t get you out of the plane seat next to the loo on a crowded holiday flight.

Enter Cult of Mac Magazine. In time for your holiday travels (or maybe escaping from your loved ones for some beach or ski resort time?), we sounded out dozens of road warriors to learn what they really find necessary for the daily commute or continental flight. These black tees and easy-to-launder socks of the app world, if you will, include some surprising picks, many of them free.

If your travel is mostly of the four-wheel variety, you’ll want to read what happens when reporter Alex Heath took smart-driving app Automatic for a month-long spin. (Can it reform his gas guzzling, donut-making driving style?)

In our exclusive Ask an Apple Genius column, we answer your questions about how to get your Mac repaired on the road and how to handle assistance when you live in a town without an Apple store.

You’ll also find our picks for the best in apps this week and what’s really rocking the iTunes store when it comes to books, movies and music.

Mosey on over to Cult of Mac Magazine on iTunes and check it out!

This Week In Cult of Mac Magazine: 2013 Gift Guide

v2 - tree from devices and Helvetica text

Cult of Mac Magazine wants to get you on the right track for giving good gifts in 2013.

It happens to all of us. There’s a time when “thanks” is as hollow as a fuzzy stocking on December 26. That half-hearted “you shouldn’t have!” that comes out when you have just given (or received) a total dud for a gift. You don’t like it. You certainly don’t need it. Or maybe you aren’t even sure what it’s for, like that InstaSlim compression shirt.   So the item in question gets shoved under a growing mountain of gift paper that the recipient (perhaps) hopes goes into the recycling bin, never to be seen again.

Here’s where we come in. Our stellar reviews editor, Charlie Sorrel, has momentarily put aside his bah-humbugging to trawl through all the best items that he has attached, stuffed or otherwise prodded his iGadgets with this year to get down to the essentials. He’s got the goods on what you need to buy for all of your devices – and, yeah, while you’re at it, your loved ones’ devices, too.

You’ll also read about how publisher Leander Kahney earned the reputation for being the worst gift giver in his entire family and get the real deal on how to get better deals on Apple products with our exclusive “Ask A Genius” column.

Cult of Mac Magazine

This Week In Cult Of Mac Magazine: Vintage With A Vengance

Cover design Craig Grannell.

Cover design Craig Grannell.

This week in Cult of Mac Magazine: how some collectors are making serious money with old Macs.

Well, that and how some are discovering that it may be sentimental value that keeps the old machines humming – as it turns out for our publisher, Leander Kahney, who reminisces on the antiquated machines in his life.

And if you dream of finding an Apple 1 or coming across a Twiggy Mac and making a pretty penny, we’ll tell you what happens when those machines roar back to life and come up at auctions.

We’ll also help you figure out what to keep – and toss! – in your collection and showcase some of the coolest ways Apple lovers have repurposed those aging computer carcasses to give them new life.

Our Apple Genius dishes on how to keep your privates protected when you bring your machine in (it’s not as hard as you think) and the best way to let your technician know you’re not a total moron – so you can get your device fixed and get out as soon as possible.

Cult of Mac Magazine

Behind The Scenes On How the iPhone Got Made


An early “Sandwich” prototype which imagined the iPhone in Apple’s iconic white plastic. CREDIT: Apple/Samsung trial.

Leander’s new book Amazon ($11.92) has debuted on the New York Times Bestseller list. (Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. And huzzah!)

If you want to get a feel for the book, check out this excerpt over at Medium, which is richly illustrated with sketches and photographs of some of the prototypes.

The Medium excerpt is how Leander wanted to originally write the book; illustrated with all the images leaked during the initial Samsung vs. Apple trial. We’ve seen the prototypes all over the web. What is missing, though, is the journalist’s most important tool: context. This treatment pairs the pictures with the details of Apple’s design process.

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This Week In Cult Of Mac Magazine: All About Jony Ive

jony ive cover

Cover design Craig Grannell.

We’ve dedicated this issue of the magazine to Sir Jony Ive, the Apple designer whose imagination brings us all the gadgets we love.

Inside, you’ll find an exclusive excerpt from publisher Leander Kahney’s brand-spanking-new book Amazon ($11.92) along with the story of how Leander met Ive for the first time. (It turns out Jony is nice, especially to forgetful reporters.) The book excerpt takes you back to where it all began: in the UK where a young Jony started working with his father in the garage.

As we do every week, we also bring you the best in new apps, picks from what’s worth your while in books, music and movies in iTunes and our exclusive Apple genius column delves into getting hired and what to do if you happen to find love while getting your iPhone repaired.

Keep the feedback coming — we’re listening!

All The Cool Apple Stuff Not Made By Apple in Hong Kong [Gallery]


One of two “Apple” bags found in the Ladies Market. @Nicole Martinelli for Cult of Mac.

Once I started iSpying in the crowded, bustling streets of Hong Kong, it was hard to stop. (Also, the IP lawyers must be seriously busy in these parts.)

These are some of my favorite finds of Apple-esque products and signs — minus the pics that didn’t turn out because my travel companions were trying to stop me from lagging behind or getting run over.

We’ll have more reporting from Hong Kong soon; a special thanks goes out to Truman Au for showing me around.

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Cult of Mac Plays iSpy in Hong Kong

Drumming up iBusiness on Nathan Road in Hong Kong.

Drumming up iBusiness on Nathan Road in Hong Kong.

I’m still a little woozy from the 14-hour plane ride from San Francisco, but at first glance this humming tech hub seems like Samsung territory.

For every 10 Galaxy Notes that metro riders are stumbling down the endless escalators watching TV shows or reading comics on, I’ve probably spotted one iPhone.

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This Week in Cult of Mac Magazine: The Mobile Art Revolution

Cover design Craig Grannell, art work @David Scott Leibowitz.

Cover design Craig Grannell, art work @David Scott Leibowitz.

This week’s Cult of Mac Magazine is all about the mobile art revolution.

Thanks to its brilliant touchscreen, the iPhone put a sketchpad in our hands and then the iPad gave us a little more room to doodle. Just a few years on, mobile art has graced the cover of The New Yorker and been hung on the walls of traditional museums.

This issue explores the landscape of mobile art – we profile a host of iArtists on how they bring their work into the real world, take a close look at David Hockney’s iPad works writ large at the de Young Museum in San Francisco and give you tips on how to power up your mobile toolkit with tips on styluses, apps and more.

If you want to get your iArtwork in a museum, in front of kids in a classroom or Amazon ($21.83) we’ll tell you how Matthew WatkinsSumit Vishwakarma and David Scott Leibowitz did just that.

We also bring you the best in new apps, picks from what’s worth your while in books, music and movies in iTunes and our exclusive Apple genius column delves into skirting the store’s EasyPay option and how to escalate to a manager if you need to.

Do you draw, paint, or create fine art with your iPad? Let us know in the comments.

Dior Designer Covets Gold iPhone – And Doesn’t Have One Yet, Either

Dior designer Camille Miceli in the Wall Street Journal.

Dior designer Camille Miceli in the Wall Street Journal.

Even a designer at fashion house Christian Dior can’t get her hands on a gold iPhone.

Camille Miceli, Dior’s artistic director of accessories, loves her iPhone. According to a Q&A with the Wall Street Journal, she spends every morning reading daily “Le Monde” on it in bed. (Oh la la!)

Though we harbored doubts before the debut that it was the epitome of tacky, Apple’s golden iPhone 5S mines current fashion trends – the color has been glimmering more on store shelves by a whopping 88 percent.

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