Remains of the Day: Smaller and smaller

Apple plans to shrink down SIM cards even further, the secret of the iPhone’s noise cancellation is revealed, and Angry Birds have jumped from the screen to real life. The remainders for Tuesday, May 17, 2011 are coming at you in three dimensions!

Orange backs Apple plan for smaller SIM (Reuters)

Ever thought that micro-SIM card in your iPhone 4 or GSM iPad is just too honking big? Well, Apple is apparently intent upon shrinking that sucker down; it’s proposed a standard for an even smaller SIM card, and it’s got the backing of wireless carrier Orange. I imagine they’ll be able to shave a whole half a gram off the overall weight of the iPad 3—at least!

Unveiled: Audience powers iPhone 4's impressive noise cancellation (iFixit)

The iPhone 4 does a pretty able job of noise cancellation, but aside from clearly taking advantage of the device’s dual microphones, it was unclear exactly how the iPhone was doing that cancellation. Fortunately, the team at iFixit has discovered that Apple’s handset uses the same Audience voice processing technology as the Google Nexus One. Hey, Android, iPhone—under the skin, you’re not so different after all.

Huge Angry Birds Game Created in Spain (Kotaku)

If you happened to be wandering through the city of Terrassa, Spain recently, you might have come across a surprising sight: a life-size version of Angry Birds. You can lay responsibility at the feet of the game’s producer, Rovio, and carrier Deutsche Telekom, who were behind the promotional stunt, but I prefer to imagine it as kind of a reverse Captain N scenario.

iPad enables legally blind woman to see her kids faces for first time in 30 years (Edible Apple)

The iPad isn’t just for fun; it actually changes the way some people live. Take the example of Evelyn O’Brien, who’s suffered from macular degeneration, a deteriorative eye disorder that robs people of their sight. But now, with the iPad, O’Brien can actually zoom in enough see things, like her kids’ faces. Incredible.

Product News:

Office² HD 4.0 - Byte Squared's office document tool for iPad has reached version 4.0, adding support for creating, editing, and saving PowerPoint documents. In addition, a handful of bugs have been fixed. $8.

PDFpen 5.3 - Both the standard and Pro versions of Smile's PDF editing tool gain support for 128-bit and 256-bit AES encryption, as well as for Unicode passwords using 256-bit encryption. Standard: $60, Pro: $100.

WritePad 5.1 for iPhone - The iPhone version of PhatWare's text-editing app has been revved to version 5.1, bringing improved handwriting recognition, synchronization with Evernote, improved Dropbox syncing, and a new command to let users upload WritePad documents to Google Docs as text or PDF. $4.

djay for iPad 1.2 - Algoriddim has updated its iPad DJ'ing app with features specifically tuned for the iPad 2, including the ability to change a song's tempo without affecting its pitch, better syncing and BPM detection, and auto-aligning to the closest percussion. The above features require the iPad 2, but the app also has better recording playback and minor improvements for all iPad models. $20.

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