Tag Archives: iwork

iWork for the iPad

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I was at a conference a few weeks ago, and realized I hadn’t taken my presentation with me! I had the iPad on the trip, so I purchased Keynote and threw it on there. I created a pretty awesome presentation in just minutes. For my needs, it was more than sufficient. It’s perfect if you need to create presentations and things of that nature on the fly. The software only cost me right around ten dollars, so I was even more happy at how well it worked.

I also ended up picking up Pages. I don’t really like the regular notes application, so I decided to give this a try. Again, this application was only ten bucks. I’m very appreciative of the features that Apple just released. I like being able to turn the iPad into landscape mode instead of portrait and still have Pages work properly. Pages definitely isn’t perfect. If you want my opinion, I think you should likely wait to buy it. There are other document-editing programs out there that you can grab.

Then, I was lucky enough to have Alex donate Numbers to me for the iPad. If you need spreadsheets, I’d say the implementation of Numbers on the iPad is well worth the money it costs. It’s very comprehensive and works really well. They’ve done a very good job with this app to optimize it for the iPad.

If you don’t need the apps, don’t get them. I feel there are much better things available at lower prices. What are your thoughts if you’re using any part of the iWork suite on your iPad?

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How do You Fall Asleep?

We’ve been having a lot of fun today over on the Facebook fan page. One of the things I posted to the community was “The last thing I think about every night before I fall asleep is…” Some of the answers were hilarious… and some were downright creepy.

The answers did prove a theory I have, though. Too often we attempt to fall asleep while trying to think of things we need to do, things we want to do, and everything we’ll never get done. We don’t tend to actually relax when we get into bed. Instead, we let our minds run a million miles an hour, sometimes more so than they do during the day. We’re not getting enough quality sleep, and we all know there’s no rest for the wicked.

What do you think of when you crawl into bed? Do you make an effort to wipe your mind clean and allow yourself to doze off? Or are you like a large majority of other Geeks who lie in bed letting the horses in their brains run free?

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What’s Better Than Microsoft PowerPoint?

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Did you ever know how most presentations suck? It’s bad enough that people doing them tend to suck, as well. It’s not their fault, though. Most of the presentation software is just not that good. A good presentation shows pictures, and don’t have much text. The worst ones to watch are where the speaker just reads every word from the slides! They drive me nuts! What do you use to create presentations? Tell me you aren’t using desktop software! Adobe has thrown their hat into the ring. They have a basic, online office suite and a new presentation software!

Acrobat Presentations is excellent. You have tons of options. Best of all, of course, is the ability using an online platform gives you to easily collaborate with others. When you create a presentation with desktop software, it’s very difficult to allow multiple people to work together on it. Using Presentations, it’s a simple process.

Presentations is a better way to create, edit, and share presentations with others online. Built on the Adobe Flash platform, Presentations looks and behaves like a desktop presentation application – but operates inside a web browser.

It’s free, and cross-platform. There’s no reason to not try it!

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What’s New in iLife ’09 (iPhoto, iMovie, iWeb, GarageBand)?

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I am taking a look at the new iLife ’09 for Mac OS X. As of the day I installed this, January 26th, it wasn’t available to the public yet. Due to a misprint in a BestBuy ad, Danny was able to purchase his copy early. Taking a look at it, I’m already liking what I see. The four components of iLife are:

  • iPhoto – Organize photos two new ways: Faces, based on who’s in your photos, and Places, based on where your photos were taken. Then share on Facebook or Flickr with a click.
  • iMovie – Make a great movie in the time you have. Choose a dynamic theme to enhance your movie in seconds. Or refine every shot with the Precision Editor.
  • GarageBand – Learn to play piano and guitar. Learn songs from the artists who made them famous. Rock like a legend with new guitar amps and stompbox effects.
  • iWeb – Design a website to share your photos, movies, and music just by dragging and dropping. Add new dynamic widgets and publish and share with a click.

Danny says that he’s noticed no speed improvements, but has definitely gotten excellent functionality improvements. He says that it is definitely well worth the amount of money it cost to buy the software.

I’m big into shooting live-to-tape, via Ustream. However, after watching Danny play around in iMovie, I’m willing to give it another try. He loves iPhoto just as much, especially the capability to publish immediately to Facebook or Twitter. iPhoto also lets you organize your photos in ways you may not have even thought of before.

The new version of GarageBand allows you to “take lessons” from beginning to expert level. There are new guitar features, and full-screen capability!! Assign instruments and styles to your guitarist, bassist, drummer, and keyboard player. Shuffle instruments randomly to instantly hear a new sound from your backing band. Create a custom mix using volume sliders or by muting and soloing any instrument.

And then we come to iWeb. iWeb makes it simple to design your own website… a task that is difficult for many people. Start by picking an Apple-designed theme. Each theme comes with coordinated fonts, backgrounds, and colors to give your site a consistent look throughout. Next, choose your template, and customize it using the tools integrated in iWeb.

I’m definitely getting my copy this week and getting it installed… are you?

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iThink iStill iLike iThem

So, I dug a little deeper into iWork yesterday – discovering more things I liked (and didn’t like). I’m still overwhelmingly impressed with the suite. Michael Markman made note and cared to clarify a few points that I didn’t necessarily make in my video review last week:

1. iWork ’08. Numbers is a totally new app in this edition. Not an upgrade to a previous version. This product started as Keynote. Then, with the addition of Pages, they called the bundle iWork. (but that was just the two apps for two versions ’05, ’06); iWork ’08 is the first time the suite has all of the big three productivity apps. Curiously, the pricing remained the same for the one-app version, the two-app version, and the three-app version. It’s always been $79.

BTW: cool, little-known tip: you can use the Apple remote to advance slides when you’re in Keynote slideshow mode.

Pages now has two modes (writing and layout), where the original version had only the layout mode. A lot of people passed it by because they wanted a simple word processor. For anyone trying to compare Pages to previous word processors (e.g. MS Word), the total orientation to layout seemed like excess baggage. If you were adept at Keynote, the layout U-I of Pages is an easy shift. but if you expected a word processor, the Pages metaphors seemed disorienting. The new version is meant to correct that with a mode that works the way traditional word processors work.

2. iLife ’08. Worth mentioning that this is bundled with Macs. ($79 for the upgrade). iMovie ’08 is controversial. It’s a five steps forward five steps back deal. See Pogue’s blog for deets. (Apple makes the previous version–iMovie HD–available as a download to people who get iMovie ’08). There was no ’07 version of either bundle.

I, too, was baffled with the new iMovie – having noted that the iLife ’08 installation already made a backup of the “classic” iMovie in a separate folder in an earlier video. The YouTube integration was relatively seamless, although the speed (rendering and upload time) was anything but impressive:

iWork and iLife 08

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http://live.pirillo.com/ – Ponzi and I review the iWork and iLife 08 applications. iLife is a full on management system for your digital lifestyle, while iWork is geared towards graphical presentations

iWork is an amazingly well put together program for Mac. The Numbers program within iWork is a spreadsheet program similar to Microsoft Excel. However, Numbers is geared toward presenting your information using graphs, charts and tables, instead of just the actual… well, numbers. Pages is the word document program, and it also emphasizes design and layout. I can’t say enough positive things about the Keynote portion of this application. Keynote is very similar to Microsoft Powerpoint. However, Keynote is just much crisper and cleaner. You can move between slides with more finesse, and they simply look better.

iLife is used to help you with your home computing. There is a feature called Garage Band. This makes it insanely simple for you to podcast. All you have to do is click a button, record, and upload. Everything is loaded and done for you. It can’t get any easier than that. There are also components in iLife to help you organize and use your videos, photographs and anything else you would need to manipulate, edit or share.

iWork and iLife are very good alternatives to their Microsoft counterparts. They are less expensive, provide more functionality, and actually just work better. In my opinion, these two programs will sell more Macs.

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Steve Jobs Thinks iPhoto is Web 2.0?! Idiot…

Okay, I have copies of both iLife ’08 and iWork ’08 installed (thanks to Lordkat for picking them up so that we’d be ready for their usage at Gnomedex in a few days). They seem to be solid updates all around, but… I’m still a bit baffled as to how Jobs could’ve bungled the new iPhoto unveiling. Let’s see if you can point out the problem in the following Engadget transcription:

10:30AM: “When you get your hands on this, you’ll think it’s great. We’re all familiar with .Mac. It’s our internet subscription service. We’re pleased to announce we have over 1.7M .Mac subscribers, we’re going to see it grow even faster after today. Marry .Mac and iPhoto. Announcing .Mac Web Gallery. Works hand in glove with iPhoto ’08. What does it do? Has one button photo sharing. integrated into iPhoto ’08. Makes web gallery, uploads automatically. Users get rich Web 2.0 experience [Did Steve really just say “Web 2.0”?]. You can see photos in gallary, mosaic. can see in any browser you’d like. Now people that view photos, if you let them, can download print quality downloads. Users can contribute photos from anywhere. You publish on .Mac, someone is on a PC, there is special email address they can get from the web gallery, and they will appear on your web gallery. Photos will sync to your iPhoto library, too.

Really, iPhoto is Web 2.0? You can upload the photos to Flickr or any other photo service? There’s finally an API? There’s a way to escape the .Mac silo? There’s… no way I’m swallowing that load of malarkey, Apple. If you’re gonna call something “Web 2.0,” at least understand what people expect that experience to be. iPhoto is as much “Web 2.0” as my dad is the emperor of China.

Fancier graphics and mirror effects are nothing more than… fancier graphics and mirror effects. This is the same ol’ Apple apps that were designed to work with the same ol’ Apple services (albeit, now with more storage availability). .Mac is still largely a waste o’ your money. If there is such a thing, Web 2.0 app integrates with services beyond its own (and its own product family). iPhoto is merely making it easier and more beautiful for its own users – not for those of us who use Flickr. Sorry.

Oh, I’m sorry… it’s not iPhoto that’s allegedly “Web 2.0,” it’s the .Mac Web Galleries… which are still only accessible through a .Mac subscription and an application that doesn’t seem to interoperate with any other service but Apple’s. Maybe I’m mistaken – maybe .Mac has integration with third-party APIs that I’m not seeing anywhere? My point is that Apple isn’t half as open as people think it is. I’m not arguing the simplicity, but I am arguing that a one-way street is not what people keep telling me this damn “Web 2.0” is.

Why should a user with a photo storage account somewhere else have to upload or reupload those photos? Why should they be left to discover a random plugin (hack?) to get it to work with their existing services? I have the exact same problem with Windows Movie Maker, mind you… but they also left it open-ended for vendors (like Blip.tv) to give their users an easier way of getting their data from a machine to their service. The onus is not on the user, it’s on the gateway and the developer.

Here’s the post-mortem.