Bad Piggies, Kindle, Cut the Rope, National Geographic Magazine for iPhone, more

Bad Piggies version 1.1.0: Rovio has updated its new Bad Piggies title with 15 new levels today, as well as a new free sandbox level. The update also includes its biggest sandbox level yet, called “Field of Dreams”, as an in-app purchase.

 The Bad piggies finally did it — they finally got the eggs! But can they hold on to them with the Angry Birds in hot pursuit? Even under the cover of darkness, they’ll need all of their best machines to stay ahead! 

-Fly through 15 tricky new levels with the birds on your tail!
-Take cover in a brand new moonlit theme!
-Unleash your creativity on a free new sandbox level!
-Introducing the Field of Dreams: Our biggest sandbox level yet, now available for purchase!

National Geographic Magazine version 2.1: With this update the free app is now available to National Geographic subscribers on the  iPhone:

• Now available for iPhone!

Kindle version 3.4: A nice update to the Kindle iOS app comes following Apple releasing new features for iBooks. The app now supports Japanese with vertical text & Manga, an option to read books in the publisher suggested font, and a new “Caecilia” font choice. Also included is X-Ray for Textbooks:

X-Ray for Textbooks gives you instant access to all the most important terms and concepts in a book, with glossary definitions, links to relevant textbook pages, and related content from Wikipedia and YouTube (available on many of the most popular print replica textbooks)

Cut the Rope version 2.0: Popular Chillingo title Cut the Rope is getting updated today with new levels, iPhone 5 and Game Center support, and more. The HD iPad version gets the same updateRead more

The first three iPhone 5 (and one EarPod) ads hit: ‘Thumbs’, ‘Physics’, ‘Cheese’ and ‘Ears’

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It sounds like actor Jeff Daniels, of “Dumb and Dumber” and “Newsroom”, narrates the first iPhone 5 ads.

“Thumbs” shows how the 4-inch screen is tailored to the windshield-wiper motion of your thumb:

“Cheese” shows the new panorama feature with a comical “cheeeeeeee *breath* eeese”:

Two more and a poll below:

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YouTube iPhone app from Google lands in the App Store just month after Apple’s version disappears

On Aug. 6, Beta 4 of iOS 6 came out with one huge gaping hole: Apple’s YouTube app. There was speculation on both sides of the fence that Apple might have pulled it because of the ongoing war with Android or perhaps Google pulled it because it wanted more control of the app and/or it wanted to show more ads. In reality, it was probably a little of both.

Whatever the case, just a month after being pulled and just a day ahead of Apple’s iOS 6/iPhone 5 event, Google has released its own homegrown YouTube app into the App Store. It is formatted for the iPhone only (an iPad version is in the works), but it already has many features that its Apple-built counterpart lacked.

Description

Watch the world’s videos and keep up with your favorite YouTube channels with the official YouTube app for iOS. Sign in to access your subscriptions, playlists, uploads and more.

Features:
✓ Enjoy YouTube’s vast video catalog, including official music videos
✓ Find videos and channels more easily with voice search and query autocomplete
✓ Subscribe to channels and instantly access your subscriptions with the channel guide UI
✓ Read comments, browse related videos, enable subtitles and more – all while watching
✓ Easy video sharing to Google+, E-mail, Facebook and Twitter

Did Google throw this together in just one month or did it have some advance warning? We are thinking the latter; it is already receiving some good reviews and appears to be a well-polished product.

As TheNextWeb points out, it is not certain how you will upload videos to YouTube in the new app. Matt Panzerino postulates that Apple will allow YouTube to be granted rights in iOS to have a file handling menu option. We are not so sure that Apple cares if you can upload to YouTube natively (see Mountain Lion) from the OS. We are thinking that you will eventually need to open the YouTube app manually, browse to the video, and do it the old-fashioned way.

The more important question now becomes: where is the Google Maps app for iOS?

More… including a walkthrough YouTube video below:

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As Apple event approaches, new iPhone fakes, mockups, and hoaxes become more elaborate

With the September 12th Apple event approaching, anticipation for a redesigned iPhone is heating up. Besides the legitimate information leaking over the course of the past months, there has been fake information, mockups and hoaxes about the device floating around. Over the past few days, the increasing anticipation and speculation for the new iPhone has led to a new level of mockups and hoaxes.

GSMIsrael, this weekend, claimed a world exclusive iPhone 5 hands-0n. Though, their hands were actually on a plasticky mockup built by a case maker.

It gets much worse…

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‘Get a Mac’ ad creator leaves TBWA/Media Arts Lab, new clients include Samsung and Microsoft

Creator of Apple’s “Get a Mac” ad campaign, Scott Trattner, is leaving his role as executive creative director at TBWA/Media Arts Lab. He was responsible for the creative development of many Apple product ads from the iPod, iPhone and iPad to Mac, iTunes and iCloud. According to Ad Age, after years of focusing mostly on Apple campaigns at TBWA/Media Arts Lab, Trattner will take a new role at 72andSunny to work as one of three creative directors with clients, including Samsung, Xbox 360, Hewlett-Packard, Activision and Nike.

“Scott’s track record for creating colossal impact on behalf of his clients is second to none,” said 72andSunny CEO John Boiler in a statement. “His work has not only shaped one of the biggest brands in the world, but redefined industries.”

Most notably, 72andSunny was responsible for Samsung’s “Next Big Thing” Galaxy S II campaign that “launches the Samsung Galaxy S II by challenging blind allegiance to Apple’s inferior products”. 72andSunny is also behind many Call of Duty ads and campaigns for other Activision games.

Apple’s most recent ads featuring Apple Genius Bar employees, which aired during the Olympic Games in London, were not well received due to their lack of focus on an actual product and the fact they assumed customers were not knowledgeable. Apple later removed the videos from both their website and YouTube channel.

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Previously jailbreak only, Apple allows iOS Display Recorder app into App Store

Update 2, July 03, 2012: It looks like Apple has now pulled the Display Recorder app from the App Store.

The ability to record your iOS display was a functionality previously limited to a Cydia app for jailbroken iPhone users that is called “Display Recorder.” As noted by JBN, Apple has allowed an app of the same name, and with even more screen recording functionality, into the App Store. The App Store version of Display Recorder, released by Bugun Software, allows you to export to YouTube or your Camera Roll, adjust video and audio settings, and settles for recording and merging audio picked up by the built-in microphone.

It appears the app might take a succession of screenshots to compile the video. Apple does not allow third-party screen capturing apps for even screenshots into the App Store (apart from third-party browser apps), because it would mimic the native screenshot functionality in iOS. It is possible Apple will pull the Display Recorder app, but it is still available in at least the U.S. and Canadian App Stores for $1.99. A video of the app in action, courtesy of JBN, is below. We will let you know if Apple decides to pull it.

Update: The developer of the original Cydia Display Recorder app, Ryan Petrich, confirmed in a tweet (above) that he is not affiliated with the new app. He also filed a complaint with Apple.

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How Steve Jobs helped Barack Obama’s re-election campaign get more social and go viral

Barack Obama’s current Campaign Manager Jim Messina revealed recently that Apple’s CEO Steve Jobs encouraged him to capitalize on technology in ways that are boosting the president’s re-election efforts.

According to Businessweek, Messina quit his gig as the White House deputy chief of staff in January to become Obama’s 2012 campaign manager. He immediately met with executives at Apple, Google, Facebook, Microsoft, DreamWorks, and more to commence a forward thinking stand for office.

“I went around the country for literally a month of my life interviewing these companies and just talking about organizational growth, emerging technologies, marketing,” said Messina to Businessweek.

He further described two conversations that he had with Jobs while still acting as deputy chief. The Apple co-founder told Messina last year that mobile technology—coupled with social—had to be the primary focus in the re-election effort.

“Last time you were programming to only a couple of channels,” said Jobs, while referring to the Web and email. “This time, you have to program content to a much wider variety of channels—Facebook, Tumblr, Twitter, YouTube, Google—because people are segmented in a very different way than they were four years ago.”

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This is how Apple can improve text editing in iOS [Video]

Update: looks like it is happening in the Jailbreak community.

Editing text on an iOS device can often be cumbersome. Currently, it requires you to tap twice to select text, and then drag small blue cursors to highlight a portion, or try to tap in between letters to set the cursor. To demonstrate a more efficient method of navigating text on an iPad, YouTube user danielchasehooper posted the video above showing a concept of moving the cursor and editing text with gestures.

When performing lots of edits in larger documents the direct interaction metaphor falls apart for cursor control. Even short portions of text can be painful to edit when you need to move the cursor to a precise location. Would you ever want to write a document on your computer without using the arrow keys? This is the reality iPad users face because they do not have the equivalent of arrow keys. There is a better way.

In the video, we see a dragging gesture on top of the keyboard being used to control the cursor. We also see a two-finger drag to move it faster and the ability to select a portion of text by holding a button while dragging. The video certainly makes a good case that Apple’s current implementation could be improved. The video’s creator urges iOS users to contact Apple and request the feature with the following provided instructions:

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Cargo-bot, the first app created entirely on the iPad, hits the App Store

Using a development environment/ app called Codea (formerly Codify), Two Lives Left created a free iPad game called Cargo-Bot. It is now available in the App Store.

Cargo-Bot is a puzzle game where you teach a robot how to move crates. Sounds simple, right? It features 36 fiendishly clever puzzles, haunting music and stunning retina graphics. You can even record your solutions and share them on YouTube to show your friends.

The app itself looks good but where it gets interesting is that it was made entirely on an iPad using Codea ($9.99 App Store). Codea uses the Lua programming language and has called the GarageBand of iPad coding for its visual ease of use. Until now, apps built using Codea were only able to play inside the app.  Using a preview of a new Open Source exporter tool, Codea exported the Cargo-bot app and submitted it to the App Store where it was recently approved.

It’s the first game of its kind, prototyped, programmed and polished on iPad. Cargo-Bot was created by Rui Viana, a Codea user who developed his initial prototype and shared it with the Codea community. Two Lives Left reached out to Rui in order to turn his prototype into a published App Store game. They also enlisted the aid of Fred Bogg, a composer who developed a music library for Codea, to create the music for Cargo-Bot.

Coinciding with the release of Cargo-Bot, Two Lives Left is releasing the Codea Runtime Library source code under the Apache License Version 2.0. Registered Apple iOS Developers will be able to export their Codea projects into the Codea Runtime Library in order to release them as standalone apps, just like Cargo-Bot.

How long until iPad game creation is mainstream? Xcode for iPad certainly couldn’t be too far off?

Press release follows:

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April 1st: iFixit, ThinkGeek, Google, and more

There are a lot of interesting announcements this Sunday morning.  Here is a rundown, but make sure to hit us with anything else you find in the comments below.

iFixit offers a special tool for opening the new iPad, which is reinforced with extra glue:

From the makers of Doxie comes Shreddie, the portable document shredder.

ThinkGeek —whose previous entry, the iCade, became a real product— introduced us to Hungry Hungry Hippos for iPad:

O2 has a phone  that will last for 1,000 hours of talk time:

Adblock is showing LOLcats today:

Google, which seems to give every department a mission for today, has a bunch of great stuff:

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