Compressify: video compression

Want to add a video background to your site, but you need to compress your video? Check out Compressify.

Google’s new VP9 codec for WebM format video files offer significant savings on bitrate for practically identical quality video files. Compressify uses an algorithm to automatically detect the optimal reduced bitrate and re-encodes the file, compressing video files by 20-60% with visually identical frames and virtually the same browser compatibility. For best results, compress from your source video.

Source: Compressify: video compression

Links of Interest – Apple Stuff

Ever wonder how you’d use an iPhone if you were blind? Read about The little-known iPhone feature that helps blind people see with their fingers (David Pogue via Yahoo Finance).

Motherboard lifts the curtain on Apple’s mysterious iPhone calibration machine:

“It was a big clunky machine that honestly looked like someone built it in their backyard,” a former Apple Genius told me. “There were different ‘moulds’ that different iPhone models would go into before going in the machine, and it would take around 30 minutes … there was some weird liquid that needed to be placed in the machine that we would have to wear gloves with to fix it. Lots of gas type valves and whatnot. It literally looked like some backyard home job. Not very Apple-like at all.”

~ Motherboard

Ever use Apple Notes on your iPhone or iPad? Federico Viticci shows us how to become an Apple Notes power-user in Optimizing Apple Notes.

Apple has hired much respected security researcher Jonathan Zdziarski. While checking out Jonathan’s blog, I happened to come across his thoughts on Christianity. Turns out he is a thoughtful Christian. His defense of his faith is refreshing.

On the heels of my review of Apple Watch, The Verge explains why Apple Watch is still the best designed smartwatch.

Podcast Roundup – The Daily, Missing Richard Simmons, and more

Last fall I enjoyed listening to the New York Times’ The Run-Up podcast. It provided an “in-the-newsroom” perspective to last year’s Presidental election. Now the show’s host, Michael Barbaro, has followed that up with a new show, The Daily.

Each morning around 6am, the latest episode hits my podcatcher. The show features interviews with Times staffers reporting on the day’s stories along with interviews of the news makers themselves. It’s a facinating start to my day with a perspective straight from the people reporting the day’s news. Give it a listen, it will make a great addition to your podcast lineup.

Where is Richard Simmons?

Have you been missing Richard Simmons lately? If so (and even if you haven’t), Dan Taberski’s new podcast Missing Richard Simmons is for you.

On February 15, 2014, fitness guru Richard Simmons disappeared. He stopped teaching his regular exercise class at Slimmons, cut off his closest friends, and removed himself from the public eye after decades as one of the most accessible celebrities in the world. Nobody has heard from him – and no one knows why he left. Filmmaker Dan Taberski was a Slimmons regular and a friend of Richard’s. Missing Richard Simmons is Dan’s search for Richard – and the deeper he digs, the stranger it gets.

~ Missing Richard Simmons

Amazon Prime Members: Are you using your free Audible Channels?

There are so many cool perks that come with Amazon Prime that I can’t keep track. One that I’ve started enjoying lately are Audible Channels. Under Audible Channels you’ll find original audio series like Presidents Are People Too! which provides real-life insights into the men who’ve held the office, there are hand-crafted playlists of the day’s news, comedy, talks, and more, and my favorite are the audio books. I’m currently listening to Fighter Pilot, The Memoirs of Legendary Ace Robin Olds.

If you’re an Amazon Prime member and you haven’t taken advantage of this perk yet, just download the Audible app on your mobile device. Then click on the Channels tab.

Sortd Smart Skin for Gmail

Use Gmail? Looking for a way to optimize your time in your inbox? Sortd is a nice looking organizational layer that you can add to your Gmail.

Sortd expands your Inbox into a flexible set of lists for important email and other stuff. Your emails, tasks and priorities now live together in one easy-to-use drag and drop workspace. It’s still good ol’ Gmail, only so much more!

Source: Sortd Smart Skin for Gmail

WordPress Theme Roundup: 2 for Writers, 1 for Business

Today I happened to be browsing through the WordPress Theme directory, and I came across three themes I just had to share:

Kent

Kent is reminiscent of the early days of Medium. It features a clean layout, nice typography, and an overall design that makes me want to crank out a couple of new posts.

Dyad

Dyad‘s excellent pairing of images and content makes the foodie in me want to start a new food blog. If you have words and pictures to go with them, it provides a great pairing.

Emmet

Emmet is a clean business oriented theme. Check out the preview provided by MotoPress. I love how this theme has a lot of design patterns and visual features without seeming cluttered. It’s big and bold with just the right amount of whitespace.

Links of Interest: Super Bowl Edition

During last night’s biggest Super Bowl comeback ever, Stranger Things fans were treated to this fabulous teaser for Season Two:

Getting back to the game: I was initially pulling for the Falcons; however, as New England’s comeback began to seem more and more inevitable…take this catch for instance:

…I switched my rooting interests, and enjoyed the ride. In case you didn’t notice, the overtime finish was the first one in the history of the Super Bowl.