Block Web/Mobile Ads that Redirect Automatically to the App Store

Block Web/Mobile Ads that Redirect Automatically to the App Store

Online advertising hits a new low with ads that automatically launch the App Store or Google Play. You may have noticed websites that automatically launch the App Store (usualy to Clash of Clans or Candy Crush). Pretty annoying since it breaks what you were doing and you have no control! Don't necessarily blame the website. It is the ad network the site is using to pay for everything that is causing the problem. Seems like a new trend is to use javascript in the ad to send you itunes URL redirects to lame apps. I have no doubt that eventually a blocking solution will appear but until it does... you need to block "hastrk2.com" on your router. This breaks the URL chain for the ad without effecting anything else. Read more for what is happening and how to stop it.

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PDF Compressor App Review - How Shrink Large PDFs to a Smaller File Size in iOS

PDF Compressor App Review - How Shrink Large PDFs to a Smaller File Size in iOS

Everything is going great with your project... the report is written, the charts and graphs are in, the photos are perfect when... Bam! The PDF document is too big to email or upload. Normally on a desktop PC you would recreate the PDF with different document settings, or run the PDF through an application like PDFShrink, but what if you were using iOS to put the doument together. Rather than transfer everything over to a PC/Mac, you can accomplish what PDFShrink does on the desktop with the PDF Compressor app in iOS. Read more to see how well the app works.

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TASCAM iM2 Channel Portable Digital Recorder Review

TASCAM iM2 Channel Portable Digital Recorder Review

One of the few positives of obsolete accessories, is that they get discounted pretty heavily, so you can finally afford what were pretty expensive pieces of equipment. I have several audio recording devices and have settled on a pair of portable digital audio recorders. I'm pretty happy with them, but couldn't resist getting the Tascam iM2 Stereo Condenser Microphones for the iPhone/iPad. This small devices turns your iPhone/iPad into one of my digital audio recorders in a smaller package and cost.

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Read and Write to a SD Card from an iPad—Wireless SD Card Readers

Read and Write to a SD Card from an iPad—Wireless SD Card Readers

Music players, audio recorders, GPS units, scanners, ebook readers, cameras of all sorts, even robots... gadgets of all sorts use SD cards to store data. A working SD Card reader for iOS brings the power of these great gadget to the iPad and iPhone. The following devices allow you to read and write to SD cards without jail-breaking your iPad.

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Read and Write between Multiple USB Drives with a USB Mini Hub Using an iPhone/iPad

Read and Write between Multiple USB Drives with a USB Mini Hub Using an iPhone/iPad

Reader Eric writes in asking about the use of a USB mini hub with the Kingston MobileLite (a wifi sd card/usb drive reader). He is using a camera which uses compact flash memory cards, and would like to backup those cards to a portable hard drive. This was my exact same situation pior to a camera upgrade and sd cards. I used a portable hard drive/LCD/memory card reader from Sanho called the iPad Hard Drive. The LCD wasn't that great, but you could review photos (including RAWs) on it. It supported compact flash and sd cards. Plus you could used standard laptop hard drives. Backups were fast. It was great, and I still use it today, but was expensive ($300+) and big (about the size of a paperback) compared to wifi sd card readers available today. Using a usb mini hub with the new wifi sd card readers may be a cheap solution to backing up compact flash cards. Unfortunately both the apotop and MobileLite devices don't support multiple usb devices. You can only access one drive from the usb port. Luckily sanho also has a device called iUSBport which may be what we need. It supports multiple usb drives via a hub and is basically a wifi sd card reader with out the sd cards.

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Add a Soundtrack to a Keynote Presentation in iOS

Add a Soundtrack to a Keynote Presentation in iOS

Adding a music to a presentation on a desktop is usually best accomplished by inserting a audio CD and playing it. In iOS the same is accomplished by playing music from the Music app. Simple, but difficult, to execute seamlessly when presenting from your iPad/iPhone. The new update to Keynote, add a soundtrack function allowing your to assign music to a presentation which plays automatically in slideshow mode.

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Export as CSV a Spreadsheet from Numbers for the iPad Using an Editorial Workflow

Export as CSV a Spreadsheet from Numbers for the iPad Using an Editorial Workflow

Comma Separated Values (CSV) files are a common data exchange file format. They are used to import data into almost all spreadsheets and databases. While Apple's Numbers application for the Mac will export and import CSV files, the iPad/iPhone Numbers app will only import them. If you only have access to iOS, don't worry the file format isn't complicated. There are several text processing app that can help you convert to a .csv file. Below is am automated workflow from Editorial which will process text copied from a data table in Numbers into a CSV in Dropbox.

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Transpose (Swap Rows and Columns) a Numbers' Data Table with a Workflow in the Editorial App

Transpose (Swap Rows and Columns) a Numbers' Data Table with a Workflow in the Editorial App

When working with data table, assigning data to rows versus columns does make a difference. For one in Numbers you can have over 60,000 rows versus 256 maximum for columns. If you've made a initial mistake in table, transposing the data can save you some time and effort. This is accomplished pretty easily in MS Excel, however this feature is missing in Apple's Numbers. Luckily, here is a easy, general purpose method for transposing a table using Editorial (a text processing and automation app).

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Choose Fonts for Maximum Compatibility

Fonts common to Mac OS X, Microsoft Windows, and iOS:

Arial
Georgia
Times New Roman
Trebuchet MS
Verdana

When your collaborating with people, exchanging documents back and forth, formatting problems can quickly arise. The above font are available to everyone, so using them can make document conversion more successful.

Unknown fonts in Pages, Numbers, and Keynote are automatically changed to Helvetica. If you need a custom typeface, consider changing the text into a graphic.

Learn to Play the Piano with Synthesia and the iPad

Learn to Play the Piano with Synthesia and the iPad

Combine the gameplay of Guitar Hero with a digital connection to an actual musical instrument, and you get a really fun way to learn music. You can do this by installing Synthesia on the iPad and connecting a digital piano to act as a game controller. The following article will show how to setup Synthesia for the iPad using lower cost components more inline with learning and gameplay, rather than as a musician getting ready for a gig. Then we'll look at using Synthesia on the iPad.

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Quick and Easy Way to Delete All the Photos from Your iPad/iPhone's Camera Roll Using the Camera Connection Kit

Quick and Easy Way to Delete All the Photos from Your iPad/iPhone's Camera Roll Using the Camera Connection Kit

You've finally backed up your huge photo library, and are ready to reclaim the huge amounts of storage they have been using when... Boom. You realize you can't just tap a button and delete everything. You need to select every single photo you have and mark it for deletion! At this point connecting to a PC is the easiest route to take, but here is a slightly easier alternative if you have access to a iPad and Apple's Camera Connection Kit.

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Apotop Wi-Reader (DW09) - Wireless SD Card Reader Review

Apotop Wi-Reader (DW09) - Wireless SD Card Reader Review

Here's an interesting dilemma... my camera supports SDXC (SD cards that are 64GB and over) if they are formatted as exFAT, while Apple's Camera Connection Kit only supports they if they aren't. Hmmm, I guess I won't be using the CCK with my new DSLR camera. Luckily there are wireless SD Card readers that solve many problems that wire connected readers (Apple's and third-party ones included) don't. This is especially true about Apotop's DW09--Wi-Reader. The Wi-Reader combine several useful gadgets into a problem solving power house. Lets take a look.

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Using a Composite Video Source (like a VHS Tape) in Your iOS Movie Project

Using a Composite Video Source (like a VHS Tape) in Your iOS Movie Project

Before the iPhone, camera phones, digital camcorders... people were recording their life. And just because technology progresses that doesn't make those memories any less. In fact their probably more valuable because they are long gone. People have a multitude of recorded footage on VHS/Beta tapes. Here is a method to convert that raw footage into something you can use on the iPad/iPhone. That way the next time you surprise Grandma with video of the grandkids, you can show off a video of your own first steps.

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Fix iPad Camera Connection Kit Problems in iOS6

Fix iPad Camera Connection Kit Problems in iOS6

There is nothing more frustrating than when a simple process fails to produce results. Case in point, using Apple's Camera Connection Kit is super easy... plug in your SD Card into the dongle then connect to the iPad. If noting happens gently wiggle it a bit. I've done it a bunch of times and it mostly works as expected. That is until my recent mini vacation. I was loading up a bunch of my own photos when I tried to get a couple from a relative's camera. Same process, but no amount of wiggling would do the trick. I quit the Photos app, restarted the iPad, the reset the iPad... still no dice. Finally I tried my wifi SD card reader and it worked over the air. I didn't think much about it, until a friend asked my to help her get some photos on to her iPad. Again no reaction from the camera kit, except this time a flash of a notification error about an invalid storage media. Hmm, no problem with the card from my Mac or the camera. I wonder if iOS is more finicky about card formats since the last update.

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Update: Creating Photo Books in iOS

Update: Creating Photo Books in iOS

2013 is the year of Photo Books with new and existing apps rolling out offerings to design, order, and deliver bound Photo Books. These book services have previously been available, however they were tied to flash based web sites that were unavailable to iPhone/iPad users. New apps had to be developed and tied to print and delivery systems. That all takes time, and it looks like we are about to see the fruit of a lot of peoples efforts. The following page lists all the apps that offer Photo Book products. I will includes prices and my initial impressions. As I order actual products, I'll post more detailed reviews.

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Transcode or Convert Videos Using iOS So You Can Use Formats Like MKVs, AVIs, DIVXs, XVIDs, and MPGs in Apps (Keynote, iMovie, etc.)

Transcode or Convert Videos Using iOS So You Can Use Formats Like MKVs, AVIs, DIVXs, XVIDs, and MPGs in Apps (Keynote, iMovie, etc.)

On this site you can learn how to work with video in your iOS Keynote and iMovie projects. Using content from YouTube and Vimeo, importing iPod friendly video files from the web and mail... have all been covered. But in reality most video people will send you won't be iPod friendly (a .mp4 file), so what do you do with .avi, .wmv, .mpg, etc. files? On a desktop you would convert them into something you can use, and that is what we will do here. The following shows you how to convert general video file formats into mp4 videos (using only an iPhone/iPad). In addition the converted movies will be automatically transferred into your devices camera roll, so they are ready to be included into your Keynote presentation or iMovie project.

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