(You're reading all posts by Rob LeFebvre)Rob LeFebvre is an Anchorage, Alaska-based writer and editor who has contributed to various tech, gaming and iOS sites, including 148Apps, Creative Screenwriting, Shelf-Awareness, VentureBeat, and Paste Magazine. Feel free to find Rob on Twitter @roblef, and send him a cookie once in a while; he'll really appreciate it.
About Rob LeFebvre
Now just might be the best time ever to be a Mac gamer, as a ton of big titles for PC and console are also available for Apple computers via the Mac App Store, Steam or GoG.com. It’s a golden era of cross-platform goodness, and it’s easier than ever to find a game you’ll love on the Mac.
Some of today’s hot titles demand a good controller, though. One of the best is Sony’s DualShock 4 controller (the same one that comes with the PlayStation 4). If you’ve got one, you’ve got easy access to a fantastic, ergonomic and just plain great gaming controller that will work with your Mac, requiring very little setup to make it happen.
Here’s our recipe for great wireless Mac gaming.
This week, Alex has a quick look inside Apple’s secret health lab, Leander has some of his own thoughts about the hot new Becoming Steve Jobs book, Luke has important info about how hackers are brute-forcing simple passwords, Rob gives you a quick how-to on marking all those unread iMessages as read, and David has a pretty neat story about Crazy Aaron’s Thinking Putty. Wild, fun, and all Cult of Mac — that’s what we have for you in this edition of Cult of Mac Magazine!
Sure, you’ve got Touch ID set up on your iPhone 6, but you’ll still need a passcode to keep your iPhone secure. If you have an older iPhone without Touch ID, or your fingerprint isn’t recognized for any reason, you’ll need to fall back on a passcode.
If you want to make your passcode even more secure, try using our recipe for a code with special characters instead of a simple number-based solution.
Indie developer Daryl Hornsby has a novel approach for getting kids engaged with educational games: Don’t dumb things down.
That’s the key to Machineers, the clever puzzle-adventure game his company crafted to to lead kids through various programming logic concepts.
“When you say you want to target 10 to 15 year-olds, you’re told you have to make it overly colorful and bubbly, and that no kids read text,” Hornsby told Cult of Mac. “We’ve been able to prove that this is not quite the case. We’ve found that kids want to be treated like adults, but it still has to be approachable.”
Note: Chosen is available for free right now but the ability to sing and judge is invite-only for now. As a special treat for Cult of Mac readers, however, the first 500 folks that enter the code 313 into the app after downloading it will be able to get in and participate.
David Hyman is no stranger to the music business, having sold MOG to Beats when the headphone company wanted a music subscription service. He was the CEO at Gracenote before that, and the director of ad sales at music blog Addicted to Noise before that. Hyman even served as interim CEO at Neil Young’s PonoPlayer.
At the Game Developers Conference this March, Hyman sat down with Cult of Mac to show off his latest music project: Chosen, a new game that marries the idea of fan-made YouTube music videos with the American Idol-style competition television, all on your iPhone.
We sat down with Hyman at the chic Hotel Zetta at the beginning of March in San Francisco, where he demoed Chosen, Hyman’s latest foray into making music accessible to all of us.
What happens when your daughter is infected by the zombie virus? You love her, and you want to save her.
Unfortunately, you’ll probably have to kill her.
Action-hero and California governor Schwarzenegger stars in the upcoming Maggie, a gritty, realistic, and very human portrait of the possible zombie apocalypse.
If you dig creating fresh beats and smooth grooves on your Mac, you’ll likely love GarageBand. It’s a fantastic bit of musical creation kit for anyone, regardless of native ability or experience. You can use loops to make new songs, play your own music with MIDI keyboards–even make your own ringtones for your iPhone. It’s quite versatile.
When you download GarageBand from the Mac App Store, you’ll immediately get 50 sounds, 500 loops, 1 drummer, and 2 basic lessons for guitar and piano. Likely, though, you want the full package, which is available as a free download that expands the content to 200 sounds, 2,000 loops, 15 drummers, and 40 basic lessons for guitar and piano.
Here’s how to get it.
Apple continues to tweak its emoji keyboard in the latest iOS 8.3 beta, the fourth iOS beta so far to make its way to developers to test and try out new features.
The new options organize the skin tone modifiers — which debuted in beta 2 of iOS 8.3 — into tap and hold menus, making things just a bit easier to utilize while streamlining the process as well.
In addition, all the yellow-colored Emoji people that previously had brown hair now have yellow hair, as you can see in the image below.
It looks like that cheap cassette adaptor I bought for my first iPhone and that universal remote for all my TV gadgets at RadioShack in the last ten years may come back to haunt me.
If you’re like me and you’ve shopped at RadioShack within the last several years, your personal information may be included in the sale of all of the failed electronics retailer’s assets in an auction that concluded Monday of this week.
The sale also includes Radio Shack trademarks, patents, leases, and the court presiding over the matter will likely decide whether Radio Shack can continue its retail operations at a smaller scale.
The reported winner of the bid, Standard General, is also RadioShack’s largest shareholder, making this an odd one. The winning bid still needs to be approved by a bankruptcy judge, who will have to consider the pending legal challenges to this sale.
Like, for example, whether a retailer that bragged, “We pride ourselves on not selling our private mailing list,” can sell them once bankrupt.
Rock band OK Go contains some incredibly talented folks. Their crazy-creative videos keep us dancing and guessing “how did they do that?” while they make iOS games and manage a successful touring and record-making career along the way.
Now the foursome is advertising for Red Star Macalline, a Chinese furniture company, with an advertisement using their hit song “I Won’t Let You Down,” including a video shot in China itself, as well as a remix of the tune for the ad.
Check it out below, but don’t say we didn’t warn you. Chair dancing will probably ensue (if you’re sitting down).