The Height-Above-Trend-Line Edition Saturday, December 1, 2018

Fun With Charts: The iPad Bests The MacBook, by Jason Snell, Six Colors

The real thing to measure in this chart is height above the trend line. And by that measure, the 2018 iPad Pro is way ahead. Meanwhile, the Touch Bar MacBook Pro models all retain a fairly consistent height above the trend line. (And the less said about the 12-inch MacBook, the better.)

Editing Your Travel Photos Can Make All The Difference — Here’s How To Do It, by Roy Furchgott, Washington Post

When she photographed the Cathedral Basilica of Our Lady of the Assumption in Santiago de Cuba, she used all of her know-how; she scouted ahead of time, found a rooftop vantage from which to shoot and waited until the light was perfect. But the resulting photo was a flop. “I wasn’t getting the emotion,” she said.

Then she applied the “art sauce” that virtually every travel photographer uses. She used software to tweak the image, turning the color photo into a dramatic black and white. “It just didn’t feel right until I removed the color,” she said. “I felt like this is what I was going for, and all that emotion and vintage feel was allowed to show through in the image.”

This is the secret of professional travel photographers. No matter how good the image they capture is, the editing — called postproduction, or “post” for short — makes it a little better. Sometimes, a lot better.


The App That Makes Writing Less Lonely, by Dougal Shaw, BBC

Welcome to the world of Inkvite, one of a number of creative-writing platforms popular with teenagers and young adults in the US. It allows users to share stories, comment on them, and also collaborate.

3 Mac Apps To Get And Stay Organized, by Matt Elliott, CNET

The new Stacks feature that MacOS Mojave introduced is helpful in bringing order to the files littering my desktop, but I still find myself fighting the multitasking tide against too many open windows. Here's a trio of Mac apps that can help keep your windows organized and your head above water.

8 Mindfulness Apps You Need If You're Burnt TF Out, by Mallory Creveling, Cosmopolitan

The cure for literally everything: mindfulness. At least, that’s what science won’t shut up about lately. Over the last few years, researchers have suggested that being mindful, or tuning into the present moment, can help people focus at work, reduce anxiety, diminish junk food cravings, and motivate people to work out more. So, yeah, it’s magic.

But how the hell do you start living your best mindful life? Well, for starters, you can download these apps that that’ll teach you to live in the now. Here’s the best one.

TestCard Turns Your iPhone Into A Private, Clinical-grade Urinalysis Kit, by Daniel Eran Dilger, AppleInsider

A UK startup is launching an app that uses the iPhone camera and flash system to provide immediate and accurate results for a variety of issues ranging from pregnancy to blood glucose to prostate health, kidney disease, STIs and even illicit drugs —using low-cost test strips that arrive in the form of a postcard-sized mailer.

Apple Approves Indian Government’s Do Not Disturb App, Avoiding iPhone Ban, by Jeremy Horwitz, VentureBeat

The registration process appears to leverage the SMS/Call Reporting framework Apple recently introduced into iOS, tying reporting directly into the Phone and Messages applications, and sharing only specific spam content with authorities.


Rogue Heart Rate App Highlights Flaws In Apple's Closed-door Review Process, by Andrew O'Hara, AppleInsider

This highlights, yet again, the problem with Apple's app review process. We are all in support of the review process, but for a clearly fraudulent app to slide through unquestioned raises serious doubts. The chance that this was a one-off circumstance that Apple overlooked and it happened to be a scam is quite unlikely and makes us question how thorough the process is as a whole.