Subwoofers aren't easy. Sure, adding a decent subwoofer to a system to supply more bass is no big deal, but getting the best possible sound out of a subwoofer is. I've written a few How To Set Up A Subwoofer articles and blogs in my time, but Brent Butterworth's recent "Subwoofers: 4, 2, or 1?" feature in Sound and Vision magazine tackled one of the more difficult aspects of home theater setup: do multiple subwoofers offer any performance advantages over a single sub? Butterworth's premise was simply this: Should I spend my $1,200 … Read more
High-end audio shows are a great way to see and hear the very best gear. I'm getting good feedback about the goings-on at T.H.E. Show: Newport being held this weekend at the Hilton Hotel at the Orange County Airport in California.
There are oodles of outrageously priced, groovy turntables; gorgeous amplifiers; and statuesque speakers on display; and lots of great music to buy. More than 100 high-end audio companies will be demonstrating their best products in rooms throughout the hotel.
T.H.E. Show: Newport is also presenting a series of seminars on computer audio; tips on … Read more
Happy day! Just a few weeks after Fortune, Sports Illustrated, and Time Magazine offered free iPad access to print subscribers, technology mag Wired has made the same move: if you subscribe to the print edition, you get current and back issues in the iPad app, no extra charge.
(Full disclosure: I'm an occasional contributor to Wired.)
That is, of course, the way magazine subscriptions should work. As publishers have discovered, subscribers feel insulted when you ask them to pay twice for content. I know I did.
With Wired, all I had to do was enter my subscriber number (which … Read more
Finally, current subscribers can read The New Yorker on the iPad without spending money on top of their subscription. With yesterday's announcement, subscribers to The New Yorker are no longer required to purchase issues of the magazine for $4.99 a pop on the iPad. Authenticating your subscription on the iPad is a quick, four-step process.
Step 1: Download the The New Yorker Magazine app. Don't worry, it's free.
Step 2: Open the app and tap the red button in the upper-right corner, which will bring you to a page to enter your subscription information. You can … Read more
In case you missed the news, Time Inc. recently struck a deal with Apple to give the iPad edition of the magazine to print subscribers--no extra charge.
As a longtime subscriber myself, I was delighted. I'd never so much as installed the Time app, because there was no way I was going to pay twice for the same magazine. (Are you listening, other publishers?) My thinking: a print subscription should include a digital subscription, end of story.
While traveling this week, I spent my first quality time with Time Magazine for iPad, bouncing between coverage of the Royal Wedding and the Navy SEALs who ended Bin Laden. And, of course, reading every word penned by Joel Stein.
You know what? This app is fantastic. It does a perfect job recreating the print edition's content while augmenting it with iPad-friendly features (including embedded videos and swipe-able slideshows--though not nearly enough of either). It's easy to navigate and thoughtful in its design.
It also makes certain kinds of content more accessible. For example, many stories in the print edition I just skim through, usually because of their intimidating length. Blame my blogger mentality, but I find page after page of mostly text to be daunting. But in the app, long stories scroll vertically; you're not flipping pages, not faced with what looks like a textbook chapter's worth of material. Thus, I now find myself reading, and enjoying, longer stories.… Read more
The 404 is finally back together again after Wilson's departure last week for San Francisco. Now that he's back, we get to hear all the reasons why the CNET office in San Francisco is better than ours.
There are lots of stories to talk about today, like banned arcade machines, iPad 2 riots in Beijing, and custom Abbottabad levels in Counter-Strike, but we're also launching a Twitter contest today for a chance to win one carbon fiber BodyGuardz skin for the iPad 2 or two codes worth $30 at the site.ban on coin-operated arcade machines. iPad 2 Beijing release causes riot. New Counter-Strike map of Osama bin Laden's hideout. Real magazine issues coming to the iPad from Hearst, Conde Nast. Steven B.'s 404 sticker in a U.K. telephone box! Episode 816 Subscribe in iTunes (audio) | Subscribe in iTunes (video) | Subscribe in RSS Audio | Subscribe in RSS Video… Read more
Magazine publisher Time Inc. has reached a deal with Apple to make all of its iPad editions available for free to print subscribers, signaling a possible resolution to an impasse between Apple and publishers.
Beginning tomorrow subscribers to Sports Illustrated, Time, and Fortune magazines will be able to access iPad content via apps that will authenticate them as subscribers, a Time Inc. spokesman told CNET, confirming a story first reported by The Wall Street Journal. Previously, subscribers to most of the print editions had to pay an extra fee to access iPad content.
Representatives for Apple did not immediately respond … Read more
A few months ago I had the pleasure of reviewing GoldenEar Technology's least expensive home theater system. The SuperCinema 3 ($1,750) comes with five small satellite speakers and a smallish subwoofer, but the sound was big and beautiful. More than that, the sound was distinctly high-end in its flavor. It was easy to tell it was designed primarily for home theater, but for those buyers who also have a hankering for audiophile-quality sound.
SAUSALITO, Calif.--Here in Marin, a county forward-thinking enough that it commissioned a world-class civic center by Frank Lloyd Wright, it should come as no surprise that many homes are truly stunning and would be envied the world over.
And the envy will probably be especially strong for those who fork over $150 to visit 10 multimillion dollar masterpieces throughout Marin, just across the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco, on April 30 and May 1. Dwell magazine, in conjunction with Marin magazine, is hosting the Home Tours. But as part of my Road Trip at Home series, I got a chance to visit four of the residences before the tours take place.
The four homes I toured provided a terrific cross-section of the best Marin has to offer: a Tiburon hilltop cacophony of windows featuring world-beating views of Marin, the Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco, and Berkeley and Oakland; a spare but impressive floating home in the middle of one of Sausalito's best houseboat communities; a "Bridge House" that imaginatively spans a small valley and a river below; and a home at the top of a hill in a tree-studded and quiet neighborhood that emphasizes the beauty and grandeur of the outdoors throughout its modern interior.
As the home tour's official brochure puts it, these houses are "pushing residential architecture forward in Marin County... Discover the houses that are bringing the outdoors in, realizing dreams, and defining what modern design means."
Gate 5 House For years, one of my favorite things to do in Sausalito has been to go walking on the houseboat docks. And while there are several of them clustered together in a small area on the north end of town, I've long favored one specific dock for its quiet, the lush plants that residents grow outside, the many cats that wander peacefully along the wooden planks, and the whimsical art found up and down the dock.
So I was very happy when I discovered that the one houseboat included in the home tour is not only on my favorite dock, but is located right at my favorite part of the dock.
This is owner-architect David Spurgeon's Gate 5 House. Unassuming from the outside, inside it's a study in maximizing minimal space. After all, this is a house with two wide-open floors and no other rooms, save for a couple of bathrooms and a closet-cum-bunk-bed. Yet it features a fantastic gourmet kitchen, views to die for of Southern Marin's Richardson Bay, a boat of its own that allows Spurgeon to set sail for just about anywhere he wants to go, and much more.
Spurgeon, who works in Sausalito as an architect, started out by buying the aging tugboat that previously filled his slip and turning it over to the local fire department, which in turn moved it nearby and used it to set test fires. Once the slip was empty, Spurgeon began building his new home by hand in 2002, completing it three years later. "I built everything you see," he told me proudly.
The house is designed to be comfortable in all seasons. When it's warm, Spurgeon can open the wide doors that lead from the main upstairs space to a deck that looks out over the water. When it's cold, he keeps the doors closed, trapping heat inside. Spurgeon touts the house's green credentials: it has radiant heat in the floors, and bamboo flooring, low-E glass, steel siding, and manufactured lumber from new-growth wood.
The house also uses space wisely. In the lower level, Spurgeon installed closets that open both into his bedroom area and into the bunk bed room. The bunk is built on top of the closet, which is located at floor level. I thought using the closet would require stooping down, but that wasn't the case.
In the bathroom, Spurgeon displays more creative use of materials. For his fixtures here, he employed food service equipment, including a kettle caddy for the main plumbing. It feels industrial, but looks just right.
I asked Spurgeon something I've always wanted to know about the houseboats: Don't they suffer from mold, since they're smack dab in the middle of an extremely wet environment? The only corrosive he worries about, he said, is the salt from the bay water that can attack the wood and metal of the boat.
But it doesn't look like he has much trouble with that, and when I asked him if he likes living here, he glowed. "Basically, you never really lose the connection to the outside," Spurgeon said, touting the seals that show up outside from time to time and the "pelicans that come in like marauding bombers" about 6 inches off the surface of the water. "It's an absolute cacophony of stuff with all the doors open... I love it here. I always feel like I'm camping out."
And if camping means cooking in a gourmet kitchen, sign me up. … Read more
Adobe Systems today released the Enterprise Edition of its Digital Publishing Suite, a tool for creating interactive publications on tablets--and for making Adobe more relevant in an age of new computing devices.
The software integrates with Adobe's existing Creative Suite applications such as InDesign to let designers produce digital publications for Apple's iPad, RIM's PlayBook, Motorola's Xoom, and Samsung's Galaxy Tab lines of Android-based tablets. It also dovetails with digital distribution systems, including Apple's App Store Subscriptions and Google One Pass. And it comes with analytics services from Adobe's Omniture acquisition so that … Read more