O'Grady's PowerPage » Software

Apple acquires real-time capture firm Faceshift, intended purposes unknown

Posted by:
Date: Wednesday, November 25th, 2015, 07:11
Category: Finance, News, Software


It’s hard to say what Apple will do with its new toy, but it’s been confirmed that it just bought a real-time motion capture firm.

The company apparently acquired Faceshift, a Zurich-based capture firm, which has worked with game and animation studios on technology designed to quickly and accurately capture facial expressions using 3D sensors, including Faceshift Studio software with plugins for Maya and Unity. The company was also working toward consumer-facing software like a Skype plugin that would support real-time avatars for video chat.


Rumor: Apple working on Genius Bar to help troubleshooting process, alleviate lines

Posted by:
Date: Monday, November 23rd, 2015, 14:41
Category: Apple Watch, iOS, iPad, iPhone, Rumor, Software, Wearables


With any luck, this could save some time.

And sanity.

A series of leaked screenshots shows that Apple is apparently working on an app to help iPad, iPhone and Apple Watch users troubleshoot their devices without having to journey out to the Genius Bar.

The pictures, which were leaked to uSwitch.com, indicate that users will be able to report a problem and coordinate support through a live chat feature and by sending a device in to be repaired.


Instagram changes APIs, feed access to third-party apps following discovery of malware

Posted by:
Date: Wednesday, November 18th, 2015, 07:45
Category: Developer, iOS, News, security, Software


In the wake of a security breach, you make changes.

Following the recent discovery of the InstaAgent malware, which was Instagram passwords from users, Instagram has instituted much stricter rules for accessing its API, effectively killing off a large number of apps that read Instagram feeds.

Over on its developer web site, Instagram explained that its API is changing, the way it distributes its feed is changing and the current API is being shut down. The company offered the following comment:

We’ve updated our Platform Policy to explicitly list the use cases we will support moving forward. These include apps and services that:

Help individuals share their own content with 3rd party apps, such as apps that let you print your photos and import an Instagram photo as a profile picture.

Help brands and advertisers understand and manage their audience, develop their content strategy, and get digital rights to media. Established apps in this space may apply for our newly announced Instagram Partner Program.

Help broadcasters and publishers discover content, get digital rights to media, and share media using web embeds.


f.lux side loading workaround dubbed a violation of developer agreement, shut down

Posted by:
Date: Friday, November 13th, 2015, 09:16
Category: Developer, iOS, News, Software


It’s a useful app, but Apple doesn’t think much of the way it installs onto your iOS device.

Apple had contacted f.lux Software to say that the f.lux for iOS download is in violation of the Developer Program Agreement, the criticism focusing on the way f.lux uses a sideloading technique to install.

f.lux, in return, stated that the updated Xcode signing allowed use of side loading, although Apple indicated that this wasn’t the case.

F.lux is a free program that changes the lighting conditions of your screen depending on the time of day and the light available around the device, thereby helping to promote better body rest and sleep functions.


Mozilla releases Firefox for iOS

Posted by:
Date: Thursday, November 12th, 2015, 12:13
Category: iOS, iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, News, Software


If you’ve been hankering for the day Firefox would be available for iOS, it’s finally here.

Mozilla has announced that its Firefox browser is now available for iOS and can be used on your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch.

Until today, Firefox for iOS was available as a public preview, and only in New Zealand. Launching first in New Zealand has become a common practice for testing new apps and features on the Web — companies use the country as a test market because it has a small population and English is the primary language.


Apple, Google remove InstaAgent app after password-stealing malware detected

Posted by:
Date: Thursday, November 12th, 2015, 12:19
Category: Android, iOS, News, security, Software


This is the joy of the war against malware.

Both Apple and Google have removed the InstaAgent app from their respective app stores after it was discovered that the app was storing users’ Instagram usernames and passwords in an unencrypted form, before sending them on to unknown servers.

InstaAgent, which tied in with Instagram, had become a popular download in the App Store’s free software section.


Google Maps app for Android offers offline feature, iOS version coming soon

Posted by:
Date: Tuesday, November 10th, 2015, 11:17
Category: Android, Google, iOS, News, Software


This could come in handy.

Google has announced that its Google Maps application for Android is now capable of storing regional data, especially in cases where you’ll be going into parts of the world without Internet access. By the company’s guess, roughly 60 percent of the world is without Internet today.

Per the company’s press statement:

Now you can download an area of the world to your phone, and the next time you find there’s no connectivity—whether it’s a country road or an underground parking garage—Google Maps will continue to work seamlessly. Whereas before you could simply view an area of the map offline, now you can get turn-by-turn driving directions, search for specific destinations, and find useful information about places, like hours of operation, contact information or ratings.


Improved Siri support found in tvOS 9.1 beta

Posted by:
Date: Tuesday, November 10th, 2015, 08:37
Category: Apple Music, News, Software, TvOS


Siri is going to start having a stronger presence in Apple’s tvOS and the new tvOS 9.1 beta might be proof of this.

Apple recently confirmed that Siri is coming to Apple Music on the new Apple TV at the beginning of 2016, but a quick study has discovered the virtual assistant can now be used for certain music-related commands on the latest tvOS 9.1 beta ahead of time.


Apple releases tvOS 9.0.1 update, offers bug fixes, performance improvements

Posted by:
Date: Tuesday, November 10th, 2015, 07:23
Category: Apple TV, News, Software, TvOS


The general consensus about the fourth-generation Apple TV seems to be that it’s a cool piece of hardware, it’s capable of a lot, but it’s got some bugs to work out.

Apple appears to be underway in squashing some of the aforementioned bugs.

On Monday, Apple released its tvOS 9.0.1 update. The update, which can be snagged by going through the Apple TV’s settings, going into System selecting Software Updates, currently includes no release notes, nor does it add requested support for Bluetooth keyboards or Apple’s Remote app for iOS. Also missing from the current tvOS is a way to restore the software without losing all your data.


Paragon’s NTFS for Mac updated to version 14, adds just features, fixes

Posted by:
Date: Monday, November 9th, 2015, 08:47
Category: News, Software


It doesn’t make the news every day, but it’s a useful app to have on hand.

Paragon Software’s NTFS, which allows full OS X read and write access to NTFS volumes, has just hit version 14.

The new version introduces new volume management functions for NTFS volumes, and it supports all versions of NTFS. Paragon has no limit for the file or partition sizes it can handle, and the software supports NTFS functions such as resource forks, reading and writing hardlinks, symlinks, and file permissions.