Moon 2

Breathing slowly with the sun in the morning,
Catching up with the world outside,
Hundreds of faces turning,
Looking at me stranded inside.

 

Look up, look at the stars,
All the small things you have,
They will lift you from the ground,
They will turn you around.

 

Give me shelter in your arms,
Whisper softly in my ears,
A gentle music for my head,
Let me lay my eyes upon your light.

 

Look up, look at the moon,
All the small things you gave me,
They will lift me from the ground,
They will turn me around.

On A Rainy Day

Looking from the window,

Only a weak wind moving trees,

Cuddling in a soft music.

WhatsApp

$19 Billions.

Let me repeat that number again: $19 Billion.

By now you surely have read everything that has been produced about the Facebook/WhatsApp deal, so I’ll be brief.

The news came as a total surprise for everybody. No leaks, no rumors, just a straight old-fashioned money waterfall.

As you can see, $19 is a crazy number but I believe (and I’m not the only one) that this number is somehow justified, or at least justifiable. WhatsApp had an incredible growth in the recent years, and especially in Europe has quickly become a de-facto replacement for standard SMS messaging.

Because of its model, WhatsApp is very immediate to start with. As soon as you install the app and you give it your phone number you’re good to go. This remove the level of friction that Facebook Messenger has. To use the latter you have to be registered to the social network and despite having 1 Billion users is still not easy to communicate with your close friends.

The other big selling point for WhatsApp is that the communication is synchronous. You can chat in real time and even if you miss a notification you definitely feel more compelled to go and check in order to reply. Because I usually receive many notifications on Facebook, it usually takes me longer to reply to a Facebook message. Messages get lost among games requests, app notifications, birthdays, events and so on.

There are so many things going on on FB that Messenger to me feels like a “disconnected” experience. More so, even if there’s a dedicated Messenger app (which make the communication a bit better), it is definitely less popular than the full Facebook app so it doesn’t solve the core issue here.

On the other hand I always considered WhatsApp as text messages on “steroid”. It’s fast, reliable, and free (I consider the $1 annual free as basically being free).

Despite all these good motivations, it’s clear that Facebook decided to acquire WhatsApp because they felt threatened by the messaging service and its incredible growth. $19 Billions it’s a recognition for WhatsApp of the great work they’ve been doing, a recognition not fully agreed among Facebook investors. The social network giant has lost few percentages points in after-hours trading after the news of the acquisition broke:

Facebook Stock Price

As with Instagram, money is going where all the users are.

As with Instagram, Facebook as already committed to leave the WhatsApp as an independently ran service with no plan in the near future to incorporate into the main Messenger infrastructure, but we’ll see how long these promises will last.

In the mean time…

PetaPixel is always a great source for all things about photography. Today I came across a very interesting plugin: Lightroom Analytics.

Once you’ve installed the plugin, it will go through all the pictures you decide to select from your catalogue, exporting the metadata as both a .csv and .json files. The plugin offers a built-in visualisation tool that will bring out and summarise the most common and interesting side of your photographic habits.

Camera Analytics

Of course you can image that the more picture you analyse the more fun you can have with the big data. I just started looking into the .json file to see if I can find some other interesting and fancier aggregates, but I have to admit that the standard tool does a pretty good job.

Lens Usage

This plugin is completely free and you should definitely give it try!

The last time I jailbroke my iPhone I believe was during the iOS5 era. After the transition to iOS6 and 7 I didn’t really feel the need to “free” my device, since many of the best tweaks have been integrated as system defaults by Apple.

Despite that I kept following the Jailbreak scene to keep myself informed of what was going on. Surely all the controversy around the first Jailbreak for iOS7 didn’t help its popularity with me but since the Chinese Pirate App Store has been removed I decided to give it a go and open up my iPhone last weekend.

Here below are the tweaks that I’ve installed so far.

JellyLock7

JellyLock7Taking a lesson from Android, this tweak will allow you to have shortcuts on your lock screen. Once you weak up your device a “ring” will appear at the bottom of the screen and by pressing on it, it will reveal the available shortcuts. This is extremely useful because it allows you to launch an app without having to insert the passcode (and once you close the app you’re back to the lock screen).

As you can see from the screenshot I have the Camera, Instagram, Spotify, PocketCast, Clock and “click to Unlock”, but from the Settings you’ll be able to set any app currently installed on your device as shortcut.

There are also plenty of options in order to customise the appearance of the ring on the lock screen.

Space Blueberry

Space BlueberryThis is not a tweak, it’s a theme for Winterboard. I’ve always been a supporter of the redesign on iOS7 and I like the transition to a “flatter” world, but despite that there are still many ugly icons on my home screen. That’s why when I saw this theme I was immediately attracted to it. Maintaining the flat and futuristic look trend of iOS7, Space Blueberry expands on this concept creating a beautifully crafted theme.

There are replacement icons for all the stock apps but also for plenty of third-party apps. After only a week it will be very difficult to go back to the standard look of iOS7.

 

 

RePower

This is a very simple tweak. All it does it’s adding more option when you press and hold the power button. Instead of simply having the option to shut down the device you can now also just Respring or quickly Reboot your device.

Browser Changer

If you are like me and you prefer using Chrome and Google Maps instead of Safari and Apple Maps, this next tweak is for you.

With Browser Changer you can set a different default browser. You can actually chose from all the different third-party browsers you have installed and not just Chrome. Once enabled, all the links will now open in your browser of choice, avoiding the sometime laborious job of manually moving URLs in order to open them in Chrome (in my case).

As a bonus option you can also select the “open in” Google Maps option. As you might guess this will make Google Maps your default mapping application and will prevent you from being sent into a different country by Apple Maps.

Open In App for Photos

IMG_0589This final tweak it’s very interesting. Normally, from within the Photos app on iOS7 you have a limited choice if you want to move picture around. You can share them on Facebook, Twitter or via Messages and WhatsApp, but if you want let’s say to upload them to Dropbox you cannot do that from there. You would have to go to the Dropbox app and then select the picture from the Camera Roll.

This tweak will add a new icon at the bottom of a picture view inside the Photos app. Tapping on this icon brings up a new sharing sheet that will list all the apps where you can open that picture, removing the unnatural process of having to start from the final destination rather than from a logical start place.

 

 

This is it. That’s the list of Jailbreak Tweaks that I have currently installed on my iPhone 5. It has been only week which means that I’m still experimenting a looking for the next “best thing”.

So far I’m very satisfied by the outcome, especially battery-wise. Jailbreaking has always been very intensive on battery usage but at the moment I cannot complain. The battery is not showing signs of over-stress and its duration hasn’t been affected by the tweaks installed.

Jailbreaking is proving itself to be still relevant despite the huge improvements of iOS during these years. I will keep experimenting and I’ll report my findings back to you as always!