Let's Play with SpaceCraft

SpaceCraft is one of those apps that just looks like it would be fun to touch. The synthwave interface is bright and inviting, but not terribly obvious. In this Let's Play I tweak all the panels and explain what they do!

Video Description:

This week I wrap up my look at the recent iOS granular synth apps with a video for SpaceCraft. SpaceCraft is capable of some very pretty textures, but it can also get nasty. I try to show off both sides in this Let's Play! SpaceCraft is available on iTunes: https://goo.gl/3JvXr5

If you've enjoyed this series please consider supporting it by becoming a Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/discchord If you'd prefer to help on a monthly basis, instead of per video, there is a monthly Patreon campaign: https://www.patreon.com/discchord_com (Patrons of both campaigns get the same benefits, including Ad Free viewing on the site!)

Let's Play with Quanta

Last month I showed off Tardigrain, and this week I'm continuing my look at the latest granular synths on iOS. Audio Damage's Quanta on iOS is just as feature-rich as the desktop version; capable of both beautiful and glitchy tones. I take a crack at doing both, with a special interest in the synthesis section of the app.

Video Description:

This year iOS got three great new granular synths! I'm going to explore them all, and this week I'm featuring Quanta by Audio Damage. This is a full-featured desktop AU/VST available now on iOS!

If you've enjoyed this series please consider supporting it by becoming a Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/discchord If you'd prefer to help on a monthly basis, instead of per video, there is a monthly Patreon campaign: https://www.patreon.com/discchord_com (Patrons of both campaigns get the same benefits, including Ad Free viewing on the site!)

Apple iPhone Event 2018: The Aftermath

The rumors of my death were greatly exaggerated, but the rumors of today's Apple Event were pretty spot on. Apple kicked things off with a refresh to the Apple Watch before unveiling 3 new iPhones. There were no iPads announced today, but I just got a rumor submitted to me from a pretty serious source that suggests we'll have 2 new Pro models by the end of October. If my source is correct, the new iPads will lose the home button and lighting port in favor of USB-C. We'll know if he's right on October 30th!

Apple Watch 4

As expected the Apple Watch 4 was announced today, with a 64-bit processor that they promise will be 2x faster than the previous model. The displays are between 32-35% larger than the previous models as well. Also as expected the new model includes an electrocardiogram function, for a deep look at hearth rhythms.

One thing the rumors missed was an automatic fall detection system. People who masturbate with their left hands will want to remember to take off the watch, or it may automatically call emergency services to report your rapid and repeated falls.

The new watch will arrive on September 21st for $400, or $500 if you want the cellular version for phone calls.

iPhone XS

Apple's Phil Schiller is clearly not utilizing the fitness features of the Apple Watch. He was looking really out of shape today, and I was genuinely worried about him. He managed to bring a lot of excitement for the new iPhones though. Phil jumped right in to confirm the iPhone XS, and a new Plus sized iPhone XS Max.

Apple were uncharacteristically nerdy in their details about the new A12 Bionic. The new phone chip features a 6 core CPU (2 high-performance, 4 high-efficiency) , 4 core GPU, and 8 core Machine Learning (ML) engine. The biggest news here is actually in their manufacturing process which is now down to 7nm. For comparison, Intel's latest CPUs are still being built at 14nm transistors. The smaller transistors mean they can cram in that much more in the same space. At 6 CPU cores, 4 GPU cores, and 8 ML cores, that is 18 cores in a tiny chip!

Developers will have access to all of that in the new CoreML SDK. This could be big. Presently Machine Learning researchers need to invest in high priced graphics cards. If we get TensorFlow on iPhone this could be a huge boon to research, with so much power available as part of the price of your phone.

One thing the rumors really got wrong were the prices. These aren't cheaper at all. The XS arrives at $1,000 for 64GB, like last year's iPhone X, and the XS Max starts at $1,100. Both will be shipping September 21st.

iPhone XR

As expected there is a (slightly) cheaper iPhone. Unlike the iPhone 5c, this is not a hugely stripped down version. In fact it has nearly all of the features of the other two phones, including the A12 Bionic chip and Face ID. It is cheaper because it has an LCD display, instead of OLED, and does not have the advanced rear camera array. The LCD display resolution isn't terrible. It is 326ppi, which is equivalent to the iPhone 8.

I think this version will appeal to a lot of people over the XS and XS Max for the variety in color finishes. I'm seriously smitten with the Red. Unfortunately it isn't a whole lot cheaper, coming in at $750 on October 26th.

Apple iPhone Event 2018: The Rumor Mill

Apple's annual iPhone event is happening today! The rumors surrounding Apple products have become an industry unto themselves. Even big outlets that shouldn't even touch rumors get in on the act. The sources of these rumors have had a chance to prove themselves over the years, so now the sources with proven credibility are given greater credence. Here is a round-up of the most plausible rumors.

Three New iPhones

Everyone agrees that Apple will be announcing 3 new iPhone models today, and everyone is in agreement on their shapes, but no one is confident about the names. In fact, one rumor suggests Apple isn't even confident about the names. Apparently Apple have been changing the model names around frequently in the last several months. The three models will almost certainly fit into 3 categories: Original Recipe, Extra Crispy, Unapologetically Plastic.

Original Recipe is believed by most be to called the Xs; similar to 6s and 5s phones in previous generations. It is expected to be cheaper and (slightly) better than last year's iPhone X. This model features the usual annual incremental improvements, but it may be priced $100 cheaper than the original iPhone X!

Extra Crispy has been known as the Plus model in previous years. Now most people think it is going to be called something like Xs MAX, signalling that Jony Ive is entirely out of ideas. This iPhone X Plus gets an OLED display like the iPhone X and today's Xs. There are other rumors that it will feature a 3 camera rear-array. The iPhone X's dual 12 megapixel cameras are pretty fucking incredible, so I'm curious to hear why Apple thought the Extra Crispy model needed a third. With the iPhone Xs now priced less than $1,000, the iPhone Xs MAX is expected to fill in that gap for people who want to spend $1,000 on the base model of a phone.

The phrase Unapologetically Plastic was Jony Ive's feeble attempt to dissuade people from referring to the cheap iPhone 5c as cheap. They're bringing back a cheap model this year, but have managed to resist the temptation to actually make it plastic. Instead of the OLED display on the other models, the iPhone Xc (or possibly iPhone XR) will have an LCD screen. With the iPhone Xs coming in at 5.8", this model will be 6.1", but at a much lower resolution. This is supposed to be budget friendly, starting at a mere $750-$850. That's a steep jump from 2016's iPhone SE, which started at $400. At least it will be aluminum instead of plastic!

All 3 models are expected to have the front-facing camera array that enables Face ID.

Apple Watch 4

The previous models of the Apple Watch have all been 32-bit, which seems odd considering how agro Apple has been about 64-bit on iOS. It is expected that we will see the first 64-bit Apple Watch announced today. This could provide for a zippy performance boost.

There are some other interesting Apple Watch 4 rumors, including a credible source that claims the next model will offer EKG(electrocardiogram) advanced heart monitoring. No one is suggesting that it will finally get the long-awaited non-invasive blood glucose monitoring. Apple were rumored to have started working on this at least 2 years ago, but now people are saying they are still several years away from getting it right.

No New iPads (Yet)

Apple is expected to announce new iPad Pro's soon, but probably not today. I only saw one seemingly credible source touting iPad Pro's coming today. We may have to wait for another iPad-specific event.

We'll find out, and see which rumors were correct, in about 1 hour when the event kicks off!

discchord 7th Anniversary: Behind the Scenes

This month has been such a roller-coaster for me. It started with news that I was going to lose half of my funding, but it ends on a very positive note. Thanks to all of the sponsors and patrons who stepped up to help keep me afloat. The site is going to stick around, so let's celebrate this 7th anniversary!

Usually I do some kind of goofy post for the anniversary, but I'm so grateful to everyone that I wanted to do something special. I've had a lot of requests to do a "Behind the Scenes" video to show you all what it is that I do everyday. I think that this is a fitting time to do that. in this video you get to see exactly what it is that you are helping me to keep doing!

I love my work. I can't thank you all enough for helping me continue it, but I'm going to try. Thank you!

Video Description:

discchord.com is celebrating its 7th anniversary this week! To commemorate this, and thank all of the people who make it possible, I'm taking you behind the scenes. This is the daily life of a professional blogger!

Thank you very much to all of the Patrons and Sponsors who make this possible!

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