Sorry, Google, BMW already owns ‘Alphabet’ and they don’t want to sell

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sorry-google-bmw-already-owns-alphabet-and-they-dont-want-to-sell-image-cultofandroidcomwp-contentuploads201508alphabet1-jpg

When Google reorganized itself into a subsidiary of a new over-arching company, Alphabet, you’d think that they’d have checked to see if anyone else was doing a similar business with the name.

In fact, BMW also does business as Alphabet, and they own the trademark and the .com URL to boot.

BMW makes cars, and Google is working on a self-driving car. That seems like possible grounds for a trademark infringement suit, right?

CSR2′s hyperrealistic super cars leave other iOS racing games in the dust

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So real it hurts.
So real it hurts.
Photo: Zynga

If you’ve ever wanted to own a garage full of incredible super cars from the likes of Ferrari and McLaren, then you’re in luck. Virtually, at least.

NaturalMotion’s CSR Racing 2, the sequel to 2012’s hit drag racing game CSR Racing (an iTunes App Store Essential game), is headed to iOS devices soon and wow is it a tour de force of graphical fidelity. The light in the game’s garage caresses every curve of these hot automobiles, shining back the deviotion the development team obviously put into each and every loving shot.

CSR2 lets players experience the thrill of attaining not just one, but a whole garage of the most desirable cars on the planet,” writes Torsten Reil, CEO of NaturalMotion, “and it feels as close as possible to the real thing. That’s because each car, down the stitching on the seats, is built without compromise to its real-world beauty, integrity and authenticity.”

Check out the gorgeous teaser trailer below.

Check out Goodwood, Jony Ive’s favorite car festival

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The Goodwood Festival is a celebration of racing and hill climbs.
The Goodwood Festival is a celebration of racing and hill climbs.
Photo: Peter Leung/Twitter

The annual race car festival at Goodwood is underway this year, with 100,000 attendees all clamoring to see the hot rods and race cars speed their way to the top of the uphill course.

Avowed gear-head Jony Ive travels to the South of England each year to see the festtival; chances are he’s there now ogling the sweet lines of a fancy race car or taking in some ideas for the rumored Apple car.

Check out some of the cool rides from this year’s festival below.

Exciting images from ‘Golden Age of Auto Design’ we almost didn’t get to see

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Charles Balogh, Ford Advanced Studio, 1953. Photo: American Dreaming
Charles Balogh, Ford Advanced Studio, 1953. Photo: American Dreaming

The concept artists who envisioned the future of the automobile created edgy, forward-thinking illustrations knowing their works might never be seen — and would likely get destroyed.

But some of the forward-looking art created during Detroit’s “Golden Age of Automotive Design” made it outside company walls, thanks to artists who lined overcoats with drawings or used boxes with false bottoms to smuggle out their work.

The car-centric art is the subject of a current exhibit at Lawrence Technological University in Detroit and is the subject of an upcoming documentary on PBS called American Dreaming.

The makers of Monument Valley want to redesign your car dashboard

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Monument Valley
Who wouldn't want the team behind Monument Valley rethinking the way we drive. Photo: Ustwo

What do you do as a second act after creating one of the most beautiful iOS games in history? If you’re Ustwo, the devs behind the Cult of Mac favorite Monument Valley, the answer is simple: you redesign the car dashboard.

Yes, you read that correctly.

It might be a long way from the M.C. Escher-inspired iPad puzzle game, but Ustwo has teamed up with the company Car Design Research to create a prototype for a simplified in-car display that shows only the information you need at the time you need it. And, unsurprisingly, it looks spectacular.

Driverless Apple cars, macho men and Apple Watch apps on The CultCast

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He's a tower of power, too sweet to be sour.  Photo: Matt Ufford, WarmingGlow.com
He's a tower of power, too sweet to be sour. Photo: Matt Ufford, WarmingGlow.com

This week: A curiously equipped mystery van has us wondering if Apple’s working on self-driving autos. Plus, we review everything that Apple Watch apps can’t do, Aaron Sorkin’s Steve Jobs biopic gets a cast and not everyone is thrilled, Apple’s plans for a global “data command center,” and Macho Man Randy Savage helps us answer listener questions in an all-new Get to Know Your Cultist.

Our thanks to lynda.com for sponsoring this episode. Learn virtually any application at your own pace from expert-taught video tutorials at lynda.com.

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Full show notes ahead!

3-D printed Shelby Cobra ready to lay down the rubber

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A blast from the past got a blast from a 3-D printer. This replica Shelby Cobra is on display this week at the Detroit Auto Show. Photo: Oak Ridge National Laboratory
A blast from the past got a blast from a 3-D printer. This replica Shelby Cobra is on display this week at the Detroit Auto Show. Photo: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

The curvy roadster with the V-8 engine is the stuff of legend and the muse of copy cats.

The Shelby Cobra turned racing on its head in the 1960s and though so few were ever produced, it became one of the most copied cars in history. Replicas continue to flood the market and a simple search on Ebay will turn up a variety of pricey replica kits.

But there’s one that might have earned a nod of approval from Carroll Shelby had he lived to see it.

For the 50th anniversary of the 1964 Shelby Cobra, a working 3-D printed replica is currently on display at the Detroit Auto Show.

How my iPhone and Twitter bought me a car

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It's a pretty sweet ride. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac
The Internet helped me land this Ford Escape. It's pretty sweet ride. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

When my 2001 Subaru Forester died on the side of the highway a week or so back, I was not excited about trying to find a replacement.

Buying a car is right up there with heading to the DMV, going to IKEA and attending your ex’s next wedding. It’s depressing. And inevitable. The load of anxiety-ridden, “hurry up and wait” BS that has marred my every interaction with car dealerships both new and used is overwhelming.

So it was with glee that I bypassed all that crap and used my iPhone, email and Twitter to buy myself a new car. Let me explain.

Gadget watch: Camping, cycling, cars and cameras

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May 30 2014

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Film or digital? Campfire or BBQ? Car or bike? Cable or wireless?

No matter which way you swing, this week’s gadgets have you covered. iPhoneographers can enjoy the Shoulderpod hand grip or slip the new iPad Olloclip onto their Mini or Air, and film nuts can get instant satisfaction with the new Lomo Instant Camera.

Camping? Take it easy in the giant Meriwether tent or go survivalist with the Blastmatch fire-starter. You can even choose how to arrive at the site, with accessories for your car or your bike. Happy traveling!

These Are The Fabulous Rides Of Sir Jony Ive

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"Will design for food."
Photo: Photo: Apple

Today, Apple designer Jony Ive turns 47. One of the threads of his incredible career has been a passion for hot wheels. Before going on to become one of the world’s most famous designers, Jony Ive went to London’s Central Saint Martins Art School fueled by an early passion to design cars. Eventually, though, he took a detour that led him to revolutionize design in personal technology.

Apple hasn’t gotten around to making an iCar yet, but Jony’s passion for automobiles is still revved up and cruising for thrills. The famed designer hasn’t been afraid to fork over some fat stacks for a nice car on a whim – even if one of his brutal beauties almost cost him his life – and has gathered a nice little collection of luxury cars over the years.

Here’s a look at some of the fabulous cars that have puttered their way into Jony’s garage, with insider information about each one pulled from the pages of Leander Kahney’s new book, “Jony Ive: The Genius Behind Apple’s Greatest Products.”