The Pro-Or-Not Edition Thursday, December 14, 2017

The iMac Pro Is Now Available—here’s How People Are Already Using It, by Samuel Axon, Ars Technica

The previously mentioned T2 chip doesn’t just do things like image and audio processing; it offers a dedicated encryption engine for the machine’s flash storage. There is a Secure Enclave processor which manages security keys. Additionally, Apple offers a secure boot feature in which the T2 chip validates the boot loader, the boot loader validates the firmware, the firmware validates the kernel, and the kernel validates the drivers. Apple wants end-to-end security, and on-the-fly encryption, and it’s all rooted in the T2 chip, without hitting the CPU. You’ll be able to turn this security on or off, or use a medium setting for developer use cases.


Six third-party developers of professional-use software have demonstrated how they're supporting or using the iMac Pro. In some cases, it was just about better performance. In others, they claimed new features or capabilities were possible because the Mac spec ceiling is so much higher now. Unfortunately, we were not provided hard benchmarks in any case. Instead, we saw live demos by the developers and heard their anecdotal reports of performance. We'll have to wait until a future review to do objective benchmarks.

Should You Buy An iMac Pro? Here Are The Reasons Why And Why Not, by Jason Snell, Macworld

There’s a lot to be said for the iMac Pro. It’s the first Mac with workstation-level processors with a plethora of processor cores (8 and up!) since the Mac Pro in 2013. The Radeon Pro Vega is the most powerful graphic processor ever in a Mac.

If you’re someone who uses a 5K iMac to get work done today, should you consider buying the iMac Pro or not? Here’s a list of reasons why you should--and also a few reasons you might want to keep that credit card in your pocket.

Hands-on: Final Cut Pro 10.4 Adds 360 VR, Advanced Color Grading, HDR Support, And More, by Jeff Benjamin, 9to5Mac

Although this latest Final Cut Pro X update brings it to version 10.4, don’t be fooled into thinking it contains only minor features or bug fixes. On the contrary, Final Cut Pro 10.4 contains several new major features and/or enhancements, along with a slew of other additions, making this one of the biggest releases in the app’s six-and-a-half year history.

After visiting with Apple in New York for a demonstration of the update, we’ve been testing Final Cut Pro 10.4 to learn all about what’s changed. In this hands-on post and high-level video walkthrough, we showcase many of the newest changes and features, including 360° video editing, enhanced color grading, HDR updates, iMovie for iOS support, HEVC, custom LUTs, and more.

iOS 11.2.1 And tvOS 11.2.1 Are Now Available, Update Restores HomeKit Sharing Following Vulnerability Fix, by Zac Hall, 9to5Mac

The software update restores remote access in HomeKit for shared users which was temporarily disabled last week to address a vulnerability in Apple’s smart home framework that allowed unauthorized access in certain circumstances. Apple has also released tvOS 11.2.1 which is likely related to the fix.

Apple Has A $1 Billion Fund For US Manufacturers, But It's Ready To Spend More, Says COO Jeff Williams, by Sara Salinas, CNBC

"We're not thinking in terms of a fund limit," Williams said. "We're thinking about, where are the opportunities across the U.S. to help nurture companies that are making the advanced technology — and the advanced manufacturing that goes with that — that quite frankly is essential to our innovation."


iOS 11 Indoor Maps Feature Now Available At More Than 40 Airports And Malls, by Juli Clover, MacRumors

Apple today began listing indoor maps for malls and airports on its iOS 11 feature availability page, giving us a clear picture of exactly where the indoor mapping feature is available for the first time.

Bear 1.4 Brings Tag And Note Autocomplete, True Black Theme For iPhone X, And More, by Federico Viticci, MacStories

The marquee addition to Bear 1.4 is autocomplete, which is most notable when adding tags to a note. Now, instead of remembering which tags you've already added to your notes in Bear, you can start typing a pound sign and the first letter of a tag, and Bear will show you an inline popup with tag suggestions. Tap one, and the tag immediately gets added to the note without typing it in full. This not only simplifies how you can organize your notes with tags, but it also ensures you always use consistent tag names as you won't end up with duplicates.

Twitterrific For iOS Adds Black Theme, Dynamic Type, Temporary Muffles, Poll Support, And More, by John Voorhees, MacStories

Muffles, which are rules that partially hide tweets from your timeline, can be temporarily disabled now. Previously, the only way to deactivate a Muffle was to delete it.


Disney Is Buying Most Of 21st Century Fox For $52.4 Billion, by Hadas Gold and Charles Riley, CNN

In addition to 21st Century Fox's movie studio and regional sports networks, Disney is buying cable channels FX and National Geographic. Disney will also get Fox's stakes in Hulu and European pay-TV provider Sky.


The deal allows Disney to expand its content, especially for streaming services. In addition to a majority stake in Hulu that it will have once the deal closes, Disney is preparing to launch two separate streaming services, one for sports and another focusing on entertainment. And it is pulling its content from Netflix in preparation for the launch.

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