Diptic adds photo filters for even better collages on iOS

Posted by Harshad

Diptic adds photo filters for even better collages on iOS

Diptic adds photo filters for even better collages on iOS

Posted: 05 Jun 2012 05:32 PM PDT

By now, just about anyone with an iPhone or iPad probably has a ton of images sitting in his or her image library. Most people already know about photo-sharing apps like Instagram and EyeEm, along with photo filter apps like PhotoToaster and FX Photo Studio for that stylized look, but there are still more fun ways to play with your images to produce nice-looking projects.

Fourteen new photo filters let you customize each frame to give it just the look you want.

(Credit: Screenshot by Jason Parker/CNET)

Diptic (99 cents) is an intuitive app that lets you make cool-looking collages using photos you take with your iPhone camera or what you have stored in your photo library. A new version of the app now adds photo filters and other options, letting you create simple but elegant collages in only a few easy steps.

You start by selecting from 52 standard layouts, such as one photo across the top with three smaller ones across the bottom, or one big image on the left with four small shot... [Read more]

'Phone, unlock thyself'

Posted: 05 Jun 2012 03:23 PM PDT

Sooner than you think, the Holy Grail of mobile password security could land on your phone thanks to new tech from Nuance called Dragon ID.

Dragon ID is a voice biometrics system from the same company behind the voice-recognition tech in Dragon Dictate for PCs and Dragon Go for iOS and Android. It promises a hands-free login system, but Nuance isn't putting it out in an app.

Instead, it's licensing the technology to manufacturers so they can build it into their phones.

"We're going to be pretty aggressive with our longstanding OEM partners, so we certainly hope to have something in the market available in the next several months to a year," said Kenneth Harper, Nuance's director of product management and marketing for mobile.

Nuance has been chary with details so far, but the implications could change how we use our smartphones. Dragon ID could be used to create and control simple logins for multiple user profiles, or to tie mobile payment options like Google Wallet to a specific voice command. "Dragon ID won't be used just for unlocking the phone, for security use-cases. We're really excited about personalization, such as on tablets. It can authenticate a user and identify a user" to pull up user-specific apps and settings, Harper said.

The technology behind Dragon ID has been available for enterprise and governments for years, with more than 20 million voice prints... [Read more]

Parallels update adds Windows 8 support

Posted: 05 Jun 2012 10:10 AM PDT

If you have a Mac and are running Parallels Desktop to install and run various Windows installations within OS X, an update is available that will allow you to easily download and configure the new Windows 8 Release Preview on your system.

One of the highly anticipated software releases is Microsoft's upcoming Windows 8 operating system. The new OS is now in Release Preview mode and sports some radical changes to its interface, with the foremost being its radical departure from the classic desktop in favor of a new Metro interface to mirror its mobile offerings.

Unfortunately the changes Microsoft is implementing in its operating system are so radical that they have been described by many as a hurdle to the customer, with columnist John C. Dvorak writing a scathing review and describing the system as "an unmitigated disaster that could decidedly hurt the company and its future."

Windows 8 can be installed from within Parallels using the Parallels Wizard tool.

(Credit: Screenshot by Topher Kessler/CNET)

If this sounds intriguing at all, then you might wish to give it a try to at least see what all the fuss is about and determine for yourself whether you... [Read more]

'Speed Dial' finally comes to Firefox

Posted: 05 Jun 2012 09:39 AM PDT

The new New Tab page in Firefox 13 finally brings a Speed Dial-style, frequently visited sites thumbnails to a blank tab.

(Credit: Mozilla)

A number of improvements that Mozilla has built into today's new Firefox release find the browser playing catch-up, treading water, and forging ahead all at the same time.

If it sounds like a near-impossible juggling act to you, you're not alone.

Firefox 13 (download for Windows | Mac | Linux) comes with feature changes and tweaks under the hood. The new features include a redesigned New Tab page that shows you thumbnails of your frequently-visited sites, often dubbed Speed Dial in honor of Opera's take on the feature. Firefox is the last of the major browsers to get some variation of the feature.

Whereas the previous home page showed only a Google search bar and two small text links at the bottom of the screen, the new one includes large icons to give you easy access to downloads, bookmarks, history, add-ons, sync, and settings. You can access the home page at about:home.

Those changes are good but quite minor. One move that will help Firefox immediately move ahead: its support for ... [Read more]


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