Apple will kick off WWDC 2015 on June 8

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WWDC 2015 is official. Photo: Apple
WWDC 2015 is official. Photo: Apple

This year’s Worldwide Developers Conference will kick off June 8 at San Francisco’s Moscone West, Apple said today. The five-day event will provide an early glimpse at the future of iOS and OS X, plus more developer sessions than ever before.

San Francisco Apple Store gets unintended water feature

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Photo: Amanda Hoac
An impressive fountain, if not an entirely planned one. Photo: Amanda Hoac

The Apple Store in downtown San Francisco got its own water fountain yesterday… sort of.

In the afternoon, a construction worker carrying out work on the the corner of Stockton and Ellis Streets, near to the Union Square brick-and-mortar store, accidentally burst a fire hydrant — resulting in a spectacular geyser of water erupting outside the Apple Store.

Although it didn’t last for long, the spectacle certainly made an impression on onlookers: one of whom filmed it using the slo-mo function on their iPhone.

How to make Apple Watch’s custom font the default on your Mac

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OSX-sanfrancisco

Apple took the wraps of WatchKit yesterday and revealed an entirely new font created just for Apple Watch called San Francisco. Designers are heaping praise on the sexy new typeface that condenses at larger sizes to take up less space, and becomes easier to read at smaller sizes, but we can’t help but wish it was coming to OS X soon.

For those that can’t wait to interact with San Francisco on the Apple Watch there’s good news though: A developer named Wells Riley has released a bundle on GitHub that swaps Yosemite Helvetica Neue system font for Apple’s new Sans Serif creation.

To make San Francisco your Mac’s system font, follow these steps:

Timbuk2: 25 years of sewin’ bags in San Francisco

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Timbuk2 bags its 25th anniversary

In 25 years, Timbuk2's product line has moved far beyond the messenger bags that made the company a leader in the industry. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

The factory floor

Timbuk2 cranks out bags to order from this San Francisco factory. "This is where the magic happens for all the custom bags," says Noel Kopp, the company's social media manager. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Small touches

A worker sews the Timbuk2 label into a custom bag during the assembly process. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Threading the needles

Custom bag buyers can specify the color of the Timbuk2 "swirl" icon that will be stitched on their bags. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Cutting up a Blue Streak

Michael Chan, who has worked at Timbuk2 since 2000, listens to Chinese radio as he precuts the fabric for custom bags using an Eastman Blue Streak II machine that works like a saw. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Spooled up

You've got to bust out some thread if you're going to make some bags. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Timbuk2's home in San Francisco

Timbuk2 CEO Patti Cazzato points out that manufacturing in a city like San Francisco is expensive due to higher real estate and labor costs, but it's part of the company's DNA. "We own our factory," she says. "We operate our factory. It's part of our corporate headquarters." Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

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Always thinking

In addition to custom bags, the San Francisco office also houses Timbuk2's product development and marketing departments. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Bang a gong

A large gong hangs in the front section of the Timbuk2 complex in San Francisco. It's used to signal the start of all-hands meetings, birthday parties and mealtimes catered by the company (every Tuesday is "make your own sandwich day." Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

SAN FRANCISCO — Twenty-five years ago, a bike messenger sat in his garage and used an old-school Singer sewing machine to stitch his mark on the world.

That bike messenger was Rob Honeycutt, and the bags he made in 1989 were called Scumbags. They were designed for use by the city’s notorious two-wheeled delivery riders, whose fashion sense tended toward crude cutoffs, T-shirts and hoodies.

A year later, Honeycutt changed his operation’s name to Timbuk2, and the company’s been crafting an increasingly ambitious line of bags ever since, expanding far beyond the world of tattooed dudes on fixies.

“Timbuk2 wasn’t going to the office 25 years ago,” CEO Patti Cazzato told Cult of Mac during a recent tour of the company’s Mission district factory, where all of Timbuk2’s custom bags are made.

Plans for giant San Francisco Apple Store hit tulip trees roadblock

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Forget about Google -- is Apple set to go
Forget about Google -- is Apple set to go "thermonuclear war" on tulip trees? Photo: torbakhopper HE DEAD/Flickr

A massive new Apple Store planned for downtown San Francisco is being held up by… tulip trees?

The site in question overlooks Union Square, with Apple planning to demolish a large existing building and replace it with a giant, two-storey glass structure reminiscent of the iconic New York Apple Store on Fifth Avenue. However, in order for work to commence on the building Apple needs to bring in the right equipment, which necessitates the removal of seven tulip trees currently blocking the path.

Trouble is, things aren’t as straightforward as they might seem.

Apple’s own security guards stage protest outside San Francisco Apple Store

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Protestors blocked the door
Protestors blocked the door of Apple's flagship San Francisco retail store for around an hour. Picture: Julia Carrie Wong

A protest involving around 50 people blocked customers from entering the main doors of Apple’s flagship San Francisco Union Square retail store yesterday.

The protest was related to service employees claiming to be underpaid. Organized by the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), they staged a sit-in for nearly an hour. While the Apple Store remained opened during this time, customers had to enter through a side door.

One of the protestors, describing himself as an Apple security guard, decried the firm for its lack of job protection. “If [security officers] miss a day of work, they don’t know if they’ll have the job the next day,” he told Business Insider.

Scenes from a pivot: Making lemonade when your first app turns sour

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Sweetch's home/office.Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac
Inside the Sweetch home office, where five French entrepreneurs did an about-face after their parking app drew the ire of San Francisco officials. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

SAN FRANCISCO — It’s every entrepreneur’s worst nightmare: The app you’ve spent hours developing gets shut down before it even really launches.

It’s been a rocky road for four young French entrepreneurs who hoped to make their mark with a parking app called Sweetch. Their idea was to alert prospective parkers that spots on the street were freeing up, exchanging a nominal fee between drivers that could be donated to local charities. But instead of paving the road to fame by clearing the city’s congested streets, they ended up pulling their app from the Apple store under threat of litigation from San Francisco’s City Attorney.

“We helped five or 10 people a day, we brought value to them, but the city didn’t even try to understand that,” co-founder Hamza Ouazzani Chahdi says, speaking to Cult of Mac in the sunny, immaculate and modern apartment the guys call both home and office in the city’s Mission District. “We were lumped in with the other apps that definitely had a predatory model and it was toxic for us.”

He says that despite a meeting with San Francisco officials, the entrepreneurs weren’t really give a chance: “It was just, ‘Here’s your deadline.’”

Cryptic Twitter account sparks hunt for hidden Bitcoin

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sfhiddenbitcoin

SAN FRANCISCO — There’s a new kind of gold hidden in the hills of this city: A mysterious Twitter account is leading locals on a treasure hunt for Bitcoin.

The folks behind @SFHiddenBitcoin, which has been active since July 1, are hot on the heels of @HiddenCash, the Twitter account that made news doling out the dough of a real estate mogul.

While judges debate whether Bitcoin is money and crashing economies around the globe fear the virtual currency’s wake, it’s the coin of the realm in certain circles here. If you can handle being a “cyphervegan,” you can basically already live on Bitcoin.

9 things every Apple fan should do at WWDC 2014

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WWDC 2014 is nearly here.

The finishing touches are being put on Moscone West before the invasion of Apple developers hit. Here's what to do when you're not busy coding.

Image: KeilO

Tour SF on an iPhone-controlled scooter

Segway tours are so last year now that Scoot has come out with iPhone-locked scooters. Not only is a scooter the best way to see San Francisco's landmarks, the tiny two-wheelers are more environmentally friendly than those huge double-decker tour buses. Just remember to book your reservation in advance because spots fill up quickly.

Location: 756 Natoma St., San Francisco

Image: Scoot Networks

Visit the Mothership

Ditch the San Francisco fog for a few hours and head down the Peninsula to Apple’s headquarters in sunny Cupertino, California. Sneaking past security at the main entrance can be tricky if you’re dying to get a bite at Caffè Macs, but the Company Store is open to the public and it’s the only place in the world that sells Apple T-shirts, hats and other odd accessories.

Location: 1 Infinite Loop, Cupertino

Image: Ryan B

Stump the Experts

Think you know absolutely everything there is to know about Apple hardware and software? Test your knowledge against Apple’s panel of experts at Stump the Experts, the weird WWDC quiz show where Apple employees (both current and former) take on your questions and award you with T-shirts and other swag if you manage to sneak a clever question past them.

Location: Tuesday, June 3, 6:30 p.m. in the Presidio Room

Image: Sebastian Müller

Grab some VC-funded coffee

All that coding and partying means your java intake will hit all new highs during WWDC week, so why not duck into the trendiest coffee chain in San Francisco for a breather? Blue Bottle has some of the tastiest brew around and is VC-funded by the same dudes you'd love to have buy your app. Plus, there's an outpost within walking distance of Moscone Center. Be prepared to wait, though, as lines at this tiny shop can take 15 minutes or longer.

Location: 66 Mint Plaza, San Francisco

Image: Niall Kennedy

Hobnob with Apple employees

After keynotes at Moscone Center, you can often bump into off-duty Apple employees minglingat the W Hotel bar just across the street. Devs tell us The Chieftain bar is another popular watering hole during WWDC festivities. Keep a look out for unattended iPhone prototypes.

Location: W Hotel, 181 Third St., San Francisco

Image: The W San Francisco

Envision the future

Apple isn't expected to complete construction of its new spaceship campus until 2016. But if you want a peek at what the future holds, you can see the spot 13,000 Apple employees will call home with a quick drive-by tour of the former Hewlett-Packard grounds.

Location: 19091 Pruneridge Ave., Cupertino, California

Image: Ron Cervi

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Meet a Jedi

WWDC sessions will turn even the most feeble coders into app-making powerhouses, but this year Apple is relying on the power of the Force by bringing in David Filoni -- director of Star Wars: Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels -- to talk about his journey from fan to becoming one of the key creatives at Lucasfilm.

Location: Moscone West's Presidio Room, Friday, 12:45 p.m.

Image:Toonami

Party at the Bash

WWDC's culminating event is not to be missed, as Apple locks down Yerba Buena Gardens with its own concert full of food, drinks and thousands of devs looking to make connections. Ok Go, Neon Trees, and Vampire Weekend have been among the list of previous performers.

Location:750 Howard St, San Francisco

Image: Stefan Haubold

See where it all started

Back when Apple was just Steve and Woz, the first 50 Apple 1s were assembled in the spare bedroom of this unassuming ranch house owned by Steve's parents. The operation expanded to the garage in 1975 before finding its first real office space. The iconic house is just a 10-minute drive from Apple HQ.

Location: 2066 Crist Drive, Los Altos, California

Image:Eric Johnson

Coding marathons, packed parties and more fanboys than should be legally permissible in one building await developers when Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference kicks off in San Francisco next week, and while the conference is serious business for most devs, who says you can’t have a little bit of fun too?

WWDC rips into high gear with a keynote on June 2nd followed by days of coding sessions, high-profile speakers, hands-on labs and tons of get togethers for developers of all sizes and backgrounds.

Sneaking in time to tour San Francisco is nearly impossible thanks to the stuffed scheduled at WWDC and nearby AltConf, but whether you’re coming to WWDC as a first timer or a seasoned vet, here are nine things every Apple fan must do at least once while visiting the Bay Area.