Technology Viewer

By Keith A. Seiffert | The view from the eyes of a technology professional and amateur pundit. TechnologyViewer.com

Apple just created, and killed, a generation of AR businesses

Two weeks ago, Apple introduced ARKit, its solution for placing 3D objects realistically into a ‘real’ place. Basically, augmented reality.<p>And it just so happens that the Holy Grail of the home decor and architecture game has been, for years, being able to place decor and furniture inside a …

Augmented Reality

CIA reportedly hacked Wi-Fi routers for years

Newly leaked documents indicate the intelligence agency developed implants for devices from 10 different manufacturers.<p>The CIA has been hacking home, office and public wireless routers for years in an effort to carry out clandestine surveillance, according to classified documents seen by CNET …

Wi-Fi

Microsoft Surface Pro review: the new normal

In Microsoft’s relatively young hardware division, the Surface Pro has always stood for what the company believes is the future of personal computing. Originally billed as “the tablet that can replace your laptop,” it straddles the line between a traditional computer and something different.<p>Times …

Laptops

Canada rules that all new cellphones must be unlocked

Canadians pay some of the highest wireless rates of any G7 nation, and to add insult to injury, they often have to shell out $50 or more to unlock cellphones when switching operators. However, the nation's wireless regulator, the CRTC, has now ordered carriers to unlock devices for free and decreed …

Net Neutrality

Google Drive will soon back up your entire computer

Google is turning Drive into a much more robust backup tool. Soon, instead of files having to live inside of the Drive folder, Google will be able to monitor and backup files inside of any folder you point it to. That can include your desktop, your entire documents folder, or other more specific …

Google

Google's getting serious about building its own iPhone

To compete with Apple, Google has to become Apple<p>When Google curtailed its Nexus program last year in favor of the Pixel, many commentators dismissed that as merely a rebranding exercise to make the latest thing feel fresh. I was in the minority that bought into Google's promise of a fundamentally …

Samsung Galaxy S8

These 3-D Printed Bricks Cool Rooms Without Air Conditioning

You don’t need an air conditioner if your whole house is keeping you cool.<p>The idea of “evaporative cooling” goes back centuries. Now it’s seeing new life in the shape of a brick–the 3-D printed “Cool Brick.”<p>Developed by Ronald Rael and Virginia San Fratello, the Cool Brick is both masonry and an …

Construction

The inventor of the Roomba just launched a weed-killing robot named Tertill

The constant garden bot<p>Franklin Robotics, a Massachusetts-based robotics company with a team that includes the inventor of the Roomba, just launched a Kickstarter campaign for its newest robot. This time it’s not a carpet-cleaning or floor-cleaning bot, but one designed to kill the weeds in your …

Robots

Brilliant gadget lets you control any garage door opener you already have from your phone

Everyone is on a mission right now to make everything in and around their homes “smart.” Connected devices offer all sorts of benefits over “dumb” …

Home Automation

The iPad Pro 10.5 is so good it’s basically showing off

Apple extends its tablet lead, but iOS 11 might end up being a bigger deal<p>A little more than a year after Apple released the 9.7-inch iPad Pro, it’s replacing it with a new model, the iPad Pro 10.5. In that year, guess how many companies came within a million miles of matching the speed, power, …

Tablets

American military backs an entirely new kind of processor

Virtually every processor you see is based on the same basic (Von Neumann) computing model: they're designed to access large chunks of sequential data and fill their caches as often as possible. This isn't the quickest way to accomplish every task, however, and the American military wants to …

Northrop Grumman

Tor Browser 7.0 works harder to protect your anonymity on its own

The latest update for privacy-minded folks' favorite way to surf the web should make others' attempts at tracking what they do even more difficult. The Tor browser's 7. 0 version introduces a sandbox feature that, according to an interview on the Tor blog, should "make life a lot harder" for people …

Cybersecurity

Drag and drop on iOS is more powerful than it's ever been on the desktop

My first reaction to Apple's WWDC announcement of iOS drag and drop was basically, "Lol welcome to three decades ago." But after watching a more in-depth technical explanation of the technology at Apple's follow-up Platforms State of the Union, I'm starting to wonder if Apple has a new “pinch to …

iOS

Samsung’s 49-inch ultrawide curved display is basically just half a TV at this point

Curved ultrawide monitors are having a bit of a moment these days in the desktop computer world, and the Samsung CHG90, at an eye-dropping 49-inches wide, might just be the wildest one yet.<p>The CHG90 is, to the best of my knowledge, the widest curved laptop monitor on the market. It is …

Gear & Gadgets

Apple's iOS 11 update ends support for iPhone 5 and 5C

<b>Apple's iOS 11 mobile operating system will not be available for the iPhone 5 and 5C or the iPad 4 when it is released in the autumn.</b><p>It means those with the older devices will no longer receive software or security updates.<p>The iPhone 5S and newer devices will receive the upgrade but some older apps …

Apple

A top Apple exec called out Google Chrome for misleading marketing

SAN JOSE, California — The browser wars are back.<p>Apple is gunning for Mac users who use Chrome over Apple's built-in browser, Safari.<p>Apple spent some time on Monday talking about upcoming improvements to Safari for Mac, including an ad tracker blocker, stopping auto-play videos by default, and some …

Apple

Logitech has released a keyboard case for the new 10.5-inch iPad Pro

Logitech has released a keyboard case for the new 10.5-inch iPad Pro. The Logitech Slim Combo features a hard case with an adjustable stand, a detachable full-size, backlit keyboard and a row of shortcuts, and a holder for the Apple Pencil.<p>The case doesn’t need to be charged, as it draws power …

Tablets

Andy Rubin wants to disrupt the Apple-Samsung 'duopoly'

The father of Android hopes to use his new startup Essential to inject some new innovation into phones.<p>Maybe Apple and Samsung just aren't bringing their A-game anymore.<p>Andy Rubin, the creator of Google's Android, offered up that fresh critique Wednesday while speaking to reporters at the Wired …

Andy Rubin

Samsung updates its J-series line of budget smartphones

Samsung has updated its J line of low-cost smartphones to more closely resemble the recently released Galaxy S8. The J3, which has already been released in the US on AT&T for $179, comes with a 5-inch HD display, Exynos 7570 quad-core 1.4GHz processor, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of storage, and a 2,400mAh …

Samsung

The iPhone is also getting drag and drop with iOS 11

Apple’s newest mobile operating system, iOS 11, is primarily focused on turning the iPad into something resembling a desktop computer. You’ve got a dock for apps, a new file system, and features like drag and drop. But, not all of these changes are destined for the iPad only. The ability to drag …

iOS

​These Color-Changing Tattoos Use Special Ink to Monitor Your Health

​The biosensing ink is particularly helpful for those with diabetes<p>If you’re the type of person who would need to explain a new tattoo to your parents, perhaps you should try one that’s good for your health. (Unlike, say, this tattoo, which killed a man after he swam in the ocean while it was …

Tattoos

HP gets in on the external GPU hype with a pretty, large box

Alongside the announcement of a bunch of gaming computers today, HP is introducing a series of accessories so that it can try to sell gamers the entire package. That includes two displays, a gaming mouse, a mechanical keyboard, and an external GPU enclosure.<p>The external GPU may be the standout of …

Laptops

Apple adds indoor mapping and notification blocking to iOS 11

Apple is trying to stop distracted driving. The company announced today at its Worldwide Developers Conference that it’s launching “Do Not Disturb While Driving” as part of iOS 11. It’ll block notifications from showing up when Apple determines you’re driving, either through a Bluetooth connection …

iOS

Apple unveils redesigned App Store with an all-new way to find apps and games

Alongside an editorial focus and cleaner design<p>Apple today announced a huge design overhaul of the App Store on iOS, unveiling a all-new interface at its WWDC keynote with a new focus on discovery and how-tos. The main feature is a landing page that highlights just one new app every day, which …

Apps

Birth control app Nurx now delivers to the ‘contraceptive deserts’ of Texas

About half the counties in Texas don’t have the number of public clinics required to meet the contraceptive needs of the population. So Nurx, an at-home birth control delivery app, decided to give women in the state the option to get birth control whenever they want and without ever needing to step …

Pregnancy

iPad gets overhauled multitasking and other major software updates in iOS 11

Apple announced some new updates for the iPad Pro at WWDC as part of the upcoming iOS 11 update that finally builds out the tablet’s potential as a professional device, with what Apple calls “the largest iOS release for iPad ever.”<p>The Dock is getting overhauled, and now resembles the dock on a Mac. …

iOS

The iPhone’s camera app can now read QR codes

Remember when QR codes were the next big thing? In the U.S. you used to be able to find them on billboards, business cards — you name it. They were supposed to change the way we use our devices. Remember CurrentC? But the technology never really caught on stateside, mainly because users had to …

Apps

Chrome 59 rolls out to desktops w/ Material settings, support for native macOS notifications

Chrome 59 is rolling out now to Mac, Windows, and Linux with a number of developer-focused features and security fixes. The biggest addition is support for native macOS notifications and full support of the animated PNG format.<p>Under development for quite a while, the Material revamp of Settings is …

Google

Apple’s new HomePod speaker is really cute in person

Hands-on with the smartest speaker yet<p>I just spent a moment with Apple’s new HomePod intelligent speaker, which kind of looks like a mesh-wrapped Mac Pro. It comes in black and white, and it’s cute. Like a cute little ovoid thing. It has seven tweeters in the bottom, along with a four-inch woofer, …

Apple