Twelve South’s New SurfacePad for iPad mini

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The brilliant minds at Twelve South have just released the SurfacePad for iPad mini.It is a beautiful, luxury leather cover for your precious Apple tablet that not only protects it from scratches and scuffs, but also allows you to prop it up at viewing or typing angles. The SurfacePad is made from high-quality Napa leather and fits snuggly with your iPad mini. It works by sticking to the back of your device (but doesn’t leave any residue behind) and a flaps that stretches out on the front.

The SurfacePad is now available to order on the Twelve South website in Pop Red, Mod White & Jet Black colors for just $69.99. I wish this was available when I purchased a case for my iPad mini.

How WhatsApp’s Arora Sealed Facebook Deal

Prior to its $19 billion sale to Facebook, WhatsApp had just one business-development employee, one marketing executive, one human-resources head and one publicist.

They were all the same person.

An interesting read on how Neeraj, an ex-googler himself, managed to seal the multi billion dollar deal.

PadFoot Stand for iPad Air & iPad mini

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I have been using the PadFoot since 2010, when I first wrote about it on Smoking Apples. Since then, the PadFoot’s designer Michiel Cornelissen has been churning out new versions for each generation of the iPad that Apple has been building at Cupertino.

I recently bought an iPad mini for myself and Michiel was kind enough to send me a sample of his latest release of PadFoot, built for the iPad Air and iPad mini. Unlike the first one, this PadFoot is an elongated cube and is also comparatively smaller and lighter, weighing in at just 8 grams. It’s still built using 3D printing and made out of polyamide. It can prop up the iPad both in Portrait & Landscape mode and makes a great stand for watching movies.

You can order one for as low as $19.76 and pick from 9 different versions.

A Pizza Geek Discovers the World’s Smartest Pizza Box, In India

Still, as it turns out, the creator of the VENTiT actually has no history with pizza at all. ”The guy who invented this box has been in corrugated board for 35 years,” says Wiener. “And one day he realized this is the way that he can reduce the steam that is trapped inside.”

I have actually handled one of these boxes when I ordered from California Pizza Kitchen, but never thought of it like this.

The Vu SuperMac TV — The Largest Apple based TV in the World

Late last month, I received a press release from Vu, introducing the first "Apple-based TV" in the world. Vu has been selling TVs in the market for a while now, but this was the first time I was receiving a proper press release from them for a TV with "built-in Mac". Reading about it, I was obviously curious & intrigued. I got in touch with the company and a demo of the product was arranged for me at their Mumbai office.

Read more →

Google purchases Nest for $3.2 billion

Google has just purchased Nest Labs, the maker of the Nest Learning Thermostat and Protect smoke detector, for $3.2 billion in cash. According to a Google press release, Nest will continue to operate independently, co-founder and CEO Tony Fadell tells us; co-founder Matt Rogers will also make the move to Google.

A combination of Nest’s home solutions coupled with Google’s language recognition could give Google its strongest path yet into your home. “Google will help us fully realize our vision of the conscious home and allow us to change the world faster than we ever could if we continued to go it alone,” writes Fadell on the Nest blog. “We’ve had great momentum, but this is a rocket ship.”

Oh!

Outlook Adds Easy Import Tool to Switch Away from Gmail

Of course, even if you are frustrated with your current provider, the thought of switching to a new service can seem daunting. So we’ve introduced new functionality right into Outlook.com that does the heavy lifting for you. All you need to do is follow a few simple steps to connect your Gmail account (using OAuth) to your Outlook.com account (if you don’t already have one, it’s easy to get). This will import your Gmail emails into your Outlook.com inbox and, because you’ve connected both accounts, your Google contacts will automatically appear in Outlook.com. The structure of your inbox, including read/unread status of your emails, will be preserved. The new tool will even set up your Gmail address as a “send-only” account so you can continue to send email from your @gmail.com address, right from Outlook.com, if you still want to.

I’ve seen some growing discontent when it comes to Gmail these days. A little over a month ago, I successfully moved away from Google Mail (Google Apps for preshit.net) over to FastMail. It’s a ridiculously good service and has been great for me. I’ll write about the move soon, but if you’ve been eyeing Outlook.com, here’s your chance.

WordPress Admin Theme Redesign

George Kordas has crafted this beautiful WordPress Admin Theme Redesign and is working on introducing it as a plugin for existing WP installations. The current WordPress Admin UI is old and feels outdated now, so it would be great to see this out there.

Click through to see his stunning work.