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iMatt Solutions
iMatt Solutions
Trending topics focussed on Mobile Devices, iOS, Android & Web Development.
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The new Apple iMac - sleeker than ever.

The new Apple iMac - sleeker than ever. | iMatt Solutions | Scoop.it

Not to be outshone by the iPad Mini, this morning Apple announced the new iMac, and it is a beautiful thing. I was glad to see that the screen has been improved to reduce screen glare by 75%.


The most interest part of the announcement though was the release of what Apple calls the "Fusion Drive". The Fusion Drive "combines a high-capacity hard drive with high-performance flash storage." Apparently it manages your data so that frequently used apps, documents, photos, and other files stay on the faster flash storage, while infrequently used items move to the hard drive. Overall this should result in shorter boot times, and as the system learns how you work, faster application launches and quicker file access. It will be interesting to hear how it performs in the real world.

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An inside look at the Google Data Centers

An inside look at the Google Data Centers | iMatt Solutions | Scoop.it

Google is notoriously secretive about its data and where it is housed. For the first time they "open the doors" and allow an inside peak. 


Take a very guided tour of several key data centers, with shots by professional photographers and some info about what's going on. It's a well designed tour that looks more like a photo gallery - but there's also a Street View, and a panoramic look at the inside of a data center.


See if you can spot the Storm Trooper and the small R2-D2 guarding the place. Tip: you'll see them in the Street View tour of the Lenoir, NC Data Center - but you'll have to be quick!

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Open letter from Apple CEO Tim Cook on iOS 6 Maps

Apple CEO Tim Cook publishes an open letter addressing customer concerns about the new Maps in iOS 6.
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How are REST APIs versioned?

A summary of many mainstream REST APIs and how they support versioning. It seems versioning via the URI is the most popular approach, despite content negotiation being recommended by many sources as the more "RESTful" approach.
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A Developer Looks at iOS 6 and the iPhone 5

A Developer Looks at iOS 6 and the iPhone 5 | iMatt Solutions | Scoop.it
The release of the iPhone 5 and iOS 6 has generated a lot of excitement, but the many new hardware and SDK changes can leave iOS developers feeling overwhelmed.
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Apple Maps: Honesty is the Best Policy

Apple Maps: Honesty is the Best Policy | iMatt Solutions | Scoop.it

Nicely written article here pointing out that the ridicule that Apple has suffered following the introduction of their Maps application in iOS 6 is largely self-inflicted.

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Xiki: Can your shell console do this?

For all of us who sit at a shell console all day this is a seriously awesome tool. Check out this video for a quick overview of "Xiki". Like a shell console but better.


You can see the official website: http://xiki.org/

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New Samsung Anti-iPhone Ad - Don't Be Fooled

New Samsung Anti-iPhone Ad - Don't Be Fooled | iMatt Solutions | Scoop.it

It's a clever ad Samsung is about to run in newspapers. A little misleading in the fact that it lists Galaxy S III specific features, but doesn't do the same for the iPhone. But of greater significance - I think this ad highlights what Samsung just does not get, or at least what they don't want you to get.


Steve Jobs always said "it is not about the hardware, it is about the software".


Sure Apples hardware is a thing of beauty, but it is how the software integrates with the hardware, and how intuitive it is, that makes it both a pleasure to use and a pleasure to develop for. It's not about how much RAM the device has - its about the experience the user has when using the device. The software dictates how efficiently the memory is used. That is why the iPhone packaging and marketing never lists how much RAM an iPhone has - it's not important.


In the past Apple's decision to limit their software to only running on their own hardware cost them big time. It was the single biggest factor leading to Microsoft winning the OS war. But that same decision is now at the heart of Apple's success. It is a company focussing on experience, in an experience-based economy. Users want, and expect, the overall experience of using a device to be intuitive, fast, and slick. That is where Apple is seriously doing well - it is what their branding is all about after all, and they are delivering. And that is also why developers are flocking to the iOS platform and are developing slick, intuitive, user-experience focussed apps that take the overall iPhone and iPad experience to yet another level.


And that is why Samsung's ad is so clever - it swings all the attention back to the hardware.


Don't be fooled.

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Check out the new iPhone 5 video

Check out the new iPhone 5 video | iMatt Solutions | Scoop.it

The new iPhone 5 was announced this morning - 18% thinner, 20% lighter, taller 4" screen (1136 x 640px), new A6 chip, faster connectivity, improved camera, mic & speakers. Same price-points as the 4S. Combined with the new iOS 6 it is a pretty slick package. Johny Ives does his usual enticing overview of the new iPhone.

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HP introduces new Apple iMac

HP introduces new Apple iMac | iMatt Solutions | Scoop.it

HP just released a new line of desktops, called Spectre One. Remind you of anything? So close on the tail of the Samsung vs Apple trials I doubt their sanity in releasing this. Search on Google and the universal reaction seems to be "HP copied the Apple iMac".

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How to tell if a web page is HTML5

How to tell if a web page is HTML5 | iMatt Solutions | Scoop.it
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Introducing EverClip for Evernote - goodbye Pocket and Instapaper

Introducing EverClip for Evernote - goodbye Pocket and Instapaper | iMatt Solutions | Scoop.it

What a fantastic app! If you use Evernote and have an iOS device then this app is possibly a must-have. As you are reading emails, web-pages, rss feeds etc, simply copy content including images, and in the background the content is added to EverClip. Then when you are ready, switch into the EverClip app and approve each clipping to send to EverNote. And of course you could even send it to a Shared notebook in Evernote.


The workflow here is fantastic - just copy to the clipboard, and carry on reading. And this is from inside any app on your device - as opposed to tools like Pocket and Instapaper which require integration with an app to work. As a long-time Evernote user this will be replacing Pocket and Instapaper for me.


Also interesting is that this app is the first commercial app built with RubyMotion, a toolchain for iOS development using the Ruby programming language.


EverClip:
http://clip.ignition.hk


Evernote:
http://evernote.com


RubyMotion:
http://www.rubymotion.com

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The toolset behind GitHub performance monitoring

The toolset behind GitHub performance monitoring | iMatt Solutions | Scoop.it

A nice summary of how GitHub use internal tools to expose and explain performance metrics. 

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I'm liking the looks of the new iPad Mini

I'm liking the looks of the new iPad Mini | iMatt Solutions | Scoop.it

The iPad mini is more than just a scaled down iPad 2 - it is has had the typical "fresh-look" approach that Apple brings to all products. It is larger than a Kindle or Nexus 7 with a 7.9" screen, and more expensive with a starting price of US$329. It will be interesting how the iPad Mini competes with these products, although arguably they are aimed at slightly different market segments.


The iPad Mini has a dual-core A5 processor, a Facetime HD camera on the front and a 5-megapixel camera on the rear, 802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi connectivity, and 4G LTE cellular connectivity in some models. And it still offers up to 10 hours of battery life.


If you lug your iPad around with you everywhere, or typically hold it for long periods of time, the lighter weight and smaller size of the iPad mini are going to make it well ... more mobile, more versatile, without compromising usability. The only downside I can imagine is that it will not be so good for reading PDF files if you do that a lot. I also wish it had the retina display, but the reality is that the screen should be slightly crisper than the iPad 2 as it has the same number of pixels packed into a smaller physical screen size.


Check out the details on the Apple website now.

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Unlocking the Power of Sublime Text 2

Unlocking the Power of Sublime Text 2 | iMatt Solutions | Scoop.it

The more I use Sublime Text 2 the more I like it - it is definitely one of the fastest and most incredible code editors to be released in a long time! Here are some tips and tricks to get you started unlocking the power...

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Two simple alternatives to using a CAPTCHA

Two simple alternatives to using a CAPTCHA | iMatt Solutions | Scoop.it

Most people hate filling in a CAPTCHA (Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart) - here are two very simple alternatives you could implement on your forms.

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With Apple Stuck On Land, Google Takes Maps Underwater

With Apple Stuck On Land, Google Takes Maps Underwater | iMatt Solutions | Scoop.it

While Apple is busy floundering on land, Google has moved on to begin mapping the seas. Google has published its first underwater Street View images, adding panoramic views of key sites under the ocean to Google Maps.

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Smartphone Display Shoot-Out - Samsung Galaxy SIII vs iPhone 5

Smartphone Display Shoot-Out - Samsung Galaxy SIII vs iPhone 5 | iMatt Solutions | Scoop.it

Detailed comparison of the screens on the iPhone 4, iPhone 5 and Samsung Galaxy SIII. 

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PaaS and NoSQL are coming so you better get ready

PaaS and NoSQL are coming so you better get ready | iMatt Solutions | Scoop.it

Some good points made in this article. Hopefully you are already playing with Git and NoSQL db's such as MongoDB or CouchDB. How much time have you spent with PaaS?

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One of the better Crash Report Screens

One of the better Crash Report Screens | iMatt Solutions | Scoop.it

I had to force restart my MacBook (yea it does happen from time-to-time) and when I rebooted, CodeKit displayed the attached Crash Report screen. It made me smile. Congrats on your creativity Bryan.


PS: I should mention that it was not CodeKit that caused my MacBook to lock up!

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PhpStorm 5 :: PHP Coding At Its Finest

PhpStorm 5 :: PHP Coding At Its Finest | iMatt Solutions | Scoop.it
Every PHP developer hunts for the ideal IDE - and in the past there was no clear winners. I personally used Zend Studio for many years which had fantastic code awareness and auto-completion, which I view as essential when working on large PHP projects. But the reality was that Zend Studio was always far too expensive. So every 6 months I would re-evaluate the PHP IDE space hunting for alternatives. I tried Komodo, I tried NetBeans.

Then I discovered PhpStorm.

PhpStorm is not free - but it is a LOT cheaper than Zend Studio - and in my opinion a much better IDE. It is fast and the code awareness and auto-completion works flawlessly. It is also a fanstistic editor for HTML / CSS / JavaScript development. It has a lot of features under the hood that I am constantly discovering. It has quickly become my IDE of choice, and my fellow developers who have tried it have all switched.

The latest version, PhpStorm 5.0, was just released with some fantastic new features. If you have been looking for a great PHP IDE then your hunt is over. And now is a great time to get on board with the Single Developer license currently half-price.
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Getting Cozy With Underscore.js

Getting Cozy With Underscore.js | iMatt Solutions | Scoop.it

A nice introduction to Underscore.js - a utility library for JavaScript that can really help streamline your code.

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The Rise of the Web TV Series

The Rise of the Web TV Series | iMatt Solutions | Scoop.it

In January 2007 Bill Gates stated that the Internet was set to revolutionize television within five years, due to an explosion of online video content and the merging of PCs and TV sets. And that prediction seems to be coming true, probably more oversees than here in New Zealand. Outside of the popularity of YouTube, we see the rise of streaming TV and movies via Netflix and Hulu - and popular TV channels such as BBC, Disney and ABC Family all streaming their TV content online. Even here in NZ more and more people seem to be using TVNZ On Demand.


And now we see another transition to back up Bill Gates prediction - the rise of original content being made for "Web TV".


The Web TV series "H+" is a good example of what the next generation of TV could look like. H+ is produced by Bryan Singer, the director of The Usual Suspects and X-Men, and the executive producer of the TV drama House. The series premiered on August 8, 2012 on YouTube with two episodes, and is scheduled to release new episodes via YouTube on Wednesdays.


My brother told me about H+ the other day, and now I see it mentioned on NZ Herald. I haven't started watching the show yet, so cannot personally vouch for it, but it's yet another interesting shift toward online streaming content taking over the living room.


Read more about H+ on NZ Herald: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/television/news/article.cfm?c_id=339&objectid=10832414

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The Tools and Tech Behind Trello

The Tools and Tech Behind Trello | iMatt Solutions | Scoop.it

Have you used Trello? It is a fantastic, easy-to-use, but deceptively powerful, task management tool - and it is free.

Trello also sports a user-interface and backend architecture that is using a number of very modern tools and technologies - which the Trello Dev team have shared with us. If you are a developer it is interesting to compare notes with this list from Trello - how many of these tools and technologies do you personally use? Are you at least familiar with them?

I decided to go through this process myself:

  • Trello - yup, use this for managing internal task lists and the roadmap of my apps
      
  • Kiln - familiar with it, but I use GitHub
      
  • Node.js - don't use it on the server, but use it along with npm on my desktop
      
  • MongoDB - familiar with it, but use CouchDB instead
      
  • CoffeeScript - familiar with it, decided to steer clear
      
  • Redis - yup, for data persistance and caching on several projects
      
  • Backbone.js - use it to underpin my JavaScript libraries
      
  • Underscore.js - use it to underpin my JavaScript libraries 
      
  • jQuery.js - of course, an essential library for any web-page/app that needs JavaScript 
      
  • LESS - love it, using it to underpin all CSS work
      
  • AmazonS3 - not yet
      
  • Vim - not for development but of course for server ops
      
  • Sublime Text - my favorite text editor
      
  • Chrome Developer Tools - for sure
      
  • Xcode - as a developer of iOS apps I can't avoid this one
      
  • IntelliJ - I use it's baby sister PhpStorm for all PHP, CSS and JavaScript development. My favorite IDE.
     
  • Charles Web Debugging Proxy - not yet
      
  • FogBugz - have used in the past, but use a combination of Zendesk and Trello instead
      
  • Google Docs - of course


So how did I do? I seem to be actively using most of this stack on an almost daily basis.

If you are not familiar with any of the items on the list I encourage you to do some reading - even to just be aware.

You can read more about each of these items and get links to them from the Trello blog post: http://www.bestvendor.com/lists/building-and-maintaining-trello-a-modern-single-page-web-app

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How RESTful is Your API?

How RESTful is Your API? | iMatt Solutions | Scoop.it

Everyone is writing REST api's nowadays - but how RESTful are they really?


A pragmatic look at REST and why most API's deviate from the original coinage of the acronym by Roy Fielding.

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