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Personal Blog

Yesterday, Google announced a new logo. I noticed it when on the off chance I needed to use Google (I'm a Duck Duck Go user now). 

The new logo is the biggest change the company has made to it's logo in the 16 years of existence. It's quite an amazing change too, the font is no longer a serif font but a new sans-serif font.

What do you think of the new logo?

New logo
Posted by J B Balfour in Tech news

I just wanted to share this article because I was never a fan of Flash on YouTube:

I am glad that Flash has finally been ditched in favour of the newer HTML5 standard. My website only uses HTML5 video, there are no Flash videos to be found on my site.

I will say however, this article does remind me of some of my favourite early YouTube videos that I saw all the way back before YouTube even became the monster it is now (in fact before Google owned it). I particularly loved the 'End of the World' video back in the day (although I think I saw it before YouTube existed on

Posted by J B Balfour in Tech news

In somewhat sad news, Motorola, one of the largest chip manufacturers in the world, has been bought by Lenovo.

You can read more at Lenovo's blog found here.

Posted by J B Balfour in Tech news

Apple Store in Edinburgh

It's finally happened and of course I was at the opening of it!

I'm just uploading a couple of images here.

It was also a lovely morning, a bit of a nice breeze but it was far from being cold (although just in case I was wearing my warm fuzzy hat). I've also been in several photos on Twitter.

Panorama taken on my iPhone of the Apple Store

Waiting outside wasn't too bad - the weather was really good, but I came prepared incase it wasn't.

We got free t-shirts as I hoped! :)

A photo taken on one of the Macs in store and emailed home.

And we didn't finish without finally updating my mum's iPad to an iPad Air! (as they are now cheaper than before as well)

It was finally time for my mum to get a new iPad.

There was a real energy in the store - it was magnificient!

Posted by J B Balfour in Tech news
Mac Mini

Well of course the Apple Special Event tonight has excited me very much because Apple have satisfied my hopes for a new Mac mini!

Not only that, they have really gone out on it and updated it with the new Haswell CPUs, given it Thunderbolt 2 and removed FireWire 800 and replaced it with another Thunderbolt port and kept the RJ-45. They've given it 802.11ac (almost Gigabit WiFi, similar to my MacBook Pro, although I will not be using WiFi as I prefer to use Gigabit Ethernet so that I'm on my wired switch first and foremost).

One thing to note as well by the way is that there appear to only be dual-core versions of the new Mac mini, which may make it a lower performer than the previous models, but we will have to see what Apple does with these.

Of course they also released the iPad Air 2, the iPad mini 3 and the iMac with Retina display as well. They've really gone all out and that's what they should have done on the 30th Anniversary of the Mac.

I'm so happy to see the new Mac mini, but will Apple have gone for a closed system and stopped users changing the RAM as they have with all other Macs?

Posted by J B Balfour in Tech news
long awaited
apple special event

Tonight at 6pm Apple will live stream information about their latest releases including (probably) a release date for Yosemite, perhaps a new iPad Air and iPad mini, (perhaps) a new Mac Mini, a new Apple TV and more.

Will you be watching it? What excites you most about it?

Posted by J B Balfour in Tech news

Saturday the 18th of October 2014 is the date set for the Apple Store's opening in Edinburgh. The Princes Street store has been long awaited and is set to be a wonderful addition to all the Apple Stores across the world. I cannot wait myself!

Posted by J B Balfour in Tech news

It's not new news that Apple is having it's next major product event on the 16th this month. I along with others am very excited and cannot wait to see what gets released.

For starters, the iPad will probably receive an update. Some believe that the way Apple will amalgamate the MacBook and iPad is by releasing an 'iPad Pro' - a larger and more powerful iPad. Others believe it also may run on a combination of Mac OS X and perhaps iOS as well.

Another major announcement could be the final release of Mac OS X Yosemite (for those who do not know, this is pronounced yo-sem-it-ee) which is currently in it's 5th beta release. 

Another possible release is the iMac with Retina display. This has been a long awaited upgrade for the iMacs which are falling behind their mobile counterparts because of this. A Retina display would up the resolution on the 21 inch model to about 3840 by 2160 and the resolution on the 27 inch to about 5120 by 2880 if they doubled pixel density again.

A final possiblity is the release of a new Mac Mini. Apple's affordable bring your own keyboard, mouse and display Mac for all has not been updated since 2012. It's a shame for me because I really wanted a small Mac desktop that I can use particularly for storing data safely. If the Mac Mini is re-designed, it will likely look like a small version of the (in my opinion) ugly Mac Pro, which will likely mean that all ways of expanding the system will be completely removed - which would be sad.

Until then, we'll just have to wait, only three days to go!

Posted by J B Balfour in Tech news

After Apple's launch of the new Apple Watch, they have chosen to update their website.

Posted by J B Balfour in Tech news

You may already know that the iPhone 6 and iOS 8 were shown off tonight. Another major release was the much speculated iWatch known as Apple Watch.

A bit about the last few years

Tim Cook gave the show to Phil Schiller to tell the audience about how Apple has innovated some incredibly new features as well as mentioning that there are 1.3 million apps on the App Store. That's an incredible amount of apps!

1.3 million apps!

1.3 million apps!

iPhone 6

The first thing to note is that there are two iPhones being released - the iPhone 6 and the iPhone 6 Plus. The Plus is a larger version of the iPhone 6. The iPhone 6 is 6.9mm thin whilst the iPhone 6 Plus is 7.1mm thin. The iPhone 6 has a resolution of 1334 x 750 whilst the Plus has a resolution of 1920 x 1080. The iPhone 6 has an improved camera has an improved camera, particularly with video and better wireless technologies - both better LTE and 802.11ac wireless (like current Macs). One final note about the new iPhone 6 is that the capacities have changed with it still being priced at $199 for 16GB, but there no longer exists that 32GB option at $299 but instead the 64GB model. So for $299 you can now get the iPhone 6 64GB. Both are available from the 19th of September and can be preordered from the 12th.

iPhone 6

The two variations of iPhone 6

Apple Pay

One of the most interesting features coming to the new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus is Apple Pay. Apple Pay allows paying using the iPhone rather than a credit or debit card. It uses NFC technology and whilst this has been in a lot of other phones for a long time, I'm certain Apple will do a better job than their competitors would.

Apple Watch

The iWatch concept that has now become Apple Watch was pretty much a shock. Most predictions were totally wrong about this one.

Apple Watch

The Apple Watch formerly known as iWatch

The Apple Watch smart watch is designed like the Samsung Galaxy Gear to be a companion device playing a sidekick role to the iPhone. It is designed to function with the iPhone 5, 5s, 5c and both iPhone 6 models. It features some clever innovations such as using pressure clicks to perform a secondary touch as well as the digital crown (the rotatable bit for adjusting the time and date on a watch) to perform specific tasks, including going home.

Apps on Apple Watch

The Apple Watch also features some specific apps and workarounds, as Tim Cook stated, they didn't just put iOS on it.

Although impressive with a wide range of new innovations and features, I do not think the Apple Watch is for me, and this comes from the fact I have a lovely watch as it is.

It is set for an 'early 2015' release.

2015 release for Apple Watch

The Apple Watch is set for a 2015 release

What I thought

I thought the event had a lot of momentum to start with but there is only so much that can really be brought to these devices now. Sure the Apple Watch was a new innovation, but it may be one of those ones that just doesn't interest me massively due to having a nice watch currently anyway and I'm sure it's the same with other watch owners.

Generally, it was a good event, but I'm not one of those who is interested in a smart watch.

All photos were taken from the live stream.

Posted by J B Balfour in Tech news