Macvoices family

Last week I appeared on Chuck Joiner’s excellent MacVoices podcast to talk about my latest book, co-written with Dan Moren, The Connected Apple Home: Discover the Rich Apple Ecosystem of the Mac, iPhone, iPad, and AppleTV. As always it was fun to be on Chuck’s show, and we talked about how Apple’s devices are converging with the latest releases of iOS and OS X.

I’ll have more to say about the book soon, but for a glimpse at what you’ll find, this podcast episode is a great introduction. Watch it here: MacVoices #14230: Jeff Carlson and Dan Moren Discuss The Connected Apple Family

WdfMP Wireless

Ever since I started writing the first edition of The iPad for Photographers, one aspect of the process has been a sticking point: image backup. I know, that sounds like the most boring part of being a photographer, but it’s also vitally important.

Importing photos onto the iPad for review is one option, but it takes up valuable storage (and digital camera files aren’t getting any smaller). That also means you have just one set of image files, unless you use the SD memory cards you originally captured the photos onto as backup (which is also a good idea).

A number of companies have made hard disks that incorporate Wi-Fi radios, primarily as a means of storing lots of media (movies, mostly) and stream them to the iPad and not take up the device’s storage. The Seagate Wireless Plus also added the ability to copy photos from the iPad to the drive, but its implementation is pretty basic and time-consuming: You need to import photos to the iPad, and then copy them to the drive.

All this is lead-up to a new product that makes the whole problem less thorny. The WD My Passport Wireless is a portable, battery-powered hard disk that adds one crucial element: an SD card reader. With this addition, you can dump the contents of a memory card while you’re shooting with another card, then connect to the drive on your iPad and review your work.

The drive is available in two configurations: 1 TB for $175 and 2 TB for $219. (Those are the current prices at Amazon as I write this; clicking either link earns me an affiliate percentage and helps support the work I do.)

My full review at Lynda.com is here: Review: My Passport Wireless for the Traveling Photographer.

If you like the work I do, please consider signing up for my low-volume newsletter that I use to announce new projects, items, and giveaways that I think my readers would be interested in.

FiLMiC Pro

One promise of the video-capture capabilities of the iPhone and iPad is being able to create movies without a lot of other expensive hardware. That can be shooting short movies, action clips, interviews, or even news segments. But when you need more than just the basics, turn to the app FiLMiC Pro. I write about this $7.99 gem at Lynda.com and explain why it’s essential for anyone who needs manual control over the video they capture, from locking focus and exposure independently to capturing video at a resolution higher than the built-in Camera app does.

Read about it here: iPhone Video Beyond Basic: Shooting with FiLMiC Pro.

iPad and iPhone VideoI also cover FiLMiC Pro in my book iPad and iPhone Video: Film, Edit, and Share the Apple Way. (Hint: It makes a great gift for the budding director in your family or circle of friends!)

If you like the work I do, please consider signing up for my low-volume newsletter that I use to announce new projects, items, and giveaways that I think my readers would be interested in.

Print gifts finished book2

Still looking for holiday gift ideas? Start with the photos in your iPhone or iPad! Over at Lynda.com, I’ve written about methods for making photo gifts without requiring a trip to your computer. Apps and services can make prints, photo books, and other creations while you wait in line to see Santa.

I also spotlight a couple of interesting photo book options: Chatbooks and Groovebook are designed to make small books out of all of your mobile photos (with the ability to skip shots you don’t like, of course) inexpensively. Chatbooks charges $6 for a 60-page book, while Groovebook works as a subscription that costs $2.99 per month for a book of 40 to 100 pages.

This was a fun article to research. Check it out here: Make Photo Gifts Right from Your iPhone or iPad.

In my latest Seattle Times Practical Mac column, I take in the beautiful screen of the new 5K iMac and wonder: Have we reached a Retina tipping point? Not all of Apple’s products offer Retina screens (the MacBook Air is the last holdout, and you can still buy non-Retina iMac, MacBook Pro, and iPad models), but they’re now in the minority.

Personally, I’m thrilled that the best improvement to computing is something that benefits the thing we look at all the time. (And personally I’m a little jealous, since I’m still soldiering on with a non-Retina 2010 MacBook Pro as my main Mac. My wife bought a 13-inch MacBook Pro last year, and I try my best to avoid it for fear that my li’l workhorse laptop will seem rough in comparison.)

Do you agree? Check out the article here: Retina 5K display a gorgeous sight worth its price.

It snowed a little last night in Seattle, and today is cold, windy, and sunny—perfect for catching snow flurries in slow motion! (It’s much better if you view the video in 720p HD.)

If you like the work I do, please consider signing up for my low-volume newsletter that I use to announce new projects, items, and giveaways that I think my readers would be interested in.

Last Color in the Rain

Broadcast thumbnail clockwise artworkI joined hosts Jason Snell and Dan Moren, and co-guest Christina Bonningham, on this week’s episode of the Clockwise podcast. We talked about workspaces, the Microsoft Band and other wearables, VR goggles (will VR ever break into the mainstream?), and my topic, the uncanny valley of personal digital assistants like Siri making human-like expressions.

I love the format of Clockwise: Four people chime in on four topics for 30 minutes, plus a bonus question at the end. Too many podcasts are 90 minutes of rambling that I just don’t have time for, even if there’s some good content in there somewhere. Jason and Dan are great hosts, and respect their listeners’ time.

IMG_9543.JPG

The end of the spectacular autumn leaf season is coming to a close. Old leaves don’t want to be forgotten.

If you like the work I do, please consider signing up for my low-volume newsletter that I use to announce new projects, items, and giveaways that I think my readers would be interested in.

ipadiphonevideo_150pxMy latest book, iPad and iPhone Video: Film, Edit, and Share the Apple Way is currently Peachpit’s Ebook Deal of the Week! This week only, buy it for 50% off—that’s just $10!

The book was a lot of fun to write, and focuses on how to do everything video-related on the iPad and iPhone. In a very short time, Apple has put a small but capable video studio into iOS. The book covers capturing video using the built-in Camera app and third-party apps such as FiLMiC Pro, correcting footage with tools such as Emulsion (for reducing camera shake) and VideoGrade (for adjusting color), and editing in iMovie.

There’s an entire chapter devoted to creating or recording a soundtrack in GarageBand, plus a chapter on making stop-motion animation movies, and then wraps up with all the ways to share video, from uploading to iMovie Theater and shooting-and-sharing Vine and Instagram movies.

And, of course, the ebook—like its print counterpart—is filled with lots of full-color illustrations and photos.

Jump on this deal now, and enjoy!

If you like the work I do, please consider signing up for my low-volume newsletter that I use to announce new projects, items, and giveaways that I think my readers would be interested in.