Top 10 Halloween Costumes for Techies

Whether you treat Halloween like an Olympic sport or have a penchant for procrastination and haphazardly-thrown-together last minute costumes, any techie worth his or her salt needs a good idea for a costume that lets them flex their geek muscle.

Here are our top 10 ideas, ranging from the topical to classic with a twist:

1. Bendgate

Image/idea via Cult of Mac.

Image/idea via Cult of Mac.

Difficulty: 5
Uniqueness: 8
Geek-factor: 6

You’ll need a foam board (or super sturdy oaktag) and some color icons printed out. That’s really about it. As a bonus, you could always dress up like a bendable iPad Air 2.

2. Scarf Guy

Image via Buzzfeed.

Image via Buzzfeed.

Difficulty: 2
Uniqueness: 7
Geek-factor: 5

We won’t soon forget the joy we felt upon first being introduced to scarf guy via the iPhone 6 reveal event. He pretty much stole the show (watch the runways in Milan next spring for this look). All you need is a blonde wig, blue shirt and purple infinity scarf …well, seems any deconstructed purple sweater or blanket will probably do. A tip of the cap to Hubspot for the great idea. Bonus: Bendgate and Scarf Guy make for a pretty sweet tandem costume. 

3. Siri

Image via TUAW.

Image via TUAW.

Difficulty: 1
Uniqueness: 4
Geek-factor: 5

If you like answering questions with “let me search the web for that,” this one might be the right option for you. Warning: Be prepared to be poked in the stomach repeatedly. 

4. Steve Jobs

Difficulty: 1
Uniqueness: 1
Geek-factor: 5

Got an old iPhone sitting in a drawer (of course you do) and a black turtleneck stuffed in the back of a dresser somewhere? Sure, this one screams “I waited til the last minute,” but it’s a classic.

5. Steve Wozniak

Image via YBMW

Image via YBMW

Difficulty: 1 (10 for the Segway version)
Uniqueness: 5
Geek-factor:

One way to level up on your Jobs costume is to throw in the Woz. No offense to Tim Cook here, but Wozniak seems like he’s more fun for Halloween party hopping. Don’t have a Segway? You can always go as “drunk Woz” or “hungry Woz”…a Google image search will give you plenty of Wozniak to work with. 


A few other ideas, in case you need more inspiration…

6. Android

Image via Forbes.

Image via Forbes.

7. Snapchat

Image via Pinterest.

Image via Pinterest.

8. Tinder

Image via Shefinds

Image via Shefinds

9. Instagram filter

10. Error 404

Image via Business Insider.

Image via Business Insider.


Sitting on any brilliant tech-inspired costume ideas? Share a photo with us in the comments! Have fun this weekend, and be safe out there!


Customer Quote of the Week

Flexibility and Convenience!

"Upgrading to Mac for all systems required a significant investment in Mac compatible software. Most were necessary, but accounting data and databases we shared with clients and our accountant couldn't be. Changing Account or clients wasn't an option. But now we run these programs seamlessly along side Mac programs and no added expense or inconvenience.   Relationships outside our business unaffected, no additional training to Mac equivalents, better operating system and equipment. Win win win."

info@alliedalarms.com.au by | ANTHONY N| Parallels Desktop | MAY 06, 2014

Yosemite & Parallels Desktop 10: The Complete Rundown

The Apple engineers have been hard at work which culminated today with the 
release of OS X Yosemite. Congratulations to all the members of the Apple team!

Likewise, the Parallels engineers have been hard at work to bring some of the 
Yosemite goodness to Windows and Windows apps, and that work has also culminated 
today with the release of Parallels Desktop 10 Update 1, version 10.1.0 (28600) in 
engineer-speak.

The main theme of this update is Yosemite integration, so you will need to have 
installed Yosemite to see and take advantage of these new Parallels Desktop 10 
features. Let me tell you (and show you in screenshots) what is waiting for you in 
Update 1. 

Full Support for Yosemite as a Host OS and a Guest OS

In addition to running Parallels Desktop 10 Update 1 on Yosemite, you can also 
run Yosemite in Parallels Desktop 10 Update 1 as a guest OS. Figures 1 and 2 show you 
some examples.

Figure 1: XP and Win8 on Yosemite 

Figure 1: XP and Win8 on Yosemite 

Figure 2: Mavericks, Yosemite & Lion VMs on Yosemite

Figure 2: Mavericks, Yosemite & Lion VMs on Yosemite

Mac Services Available in Both Windows and Office for Windows

The new Yosemite cloud services, iCloud Drive and iCloud Photo Stream are 
integrated into both Windows and in Office for Windows. In Figure 3, you can see that 
both these cloud service show up in Windows right alongside other cloud services like 
OneDrive (previously known as SkyDrive) and Dropbox. This means that the you don’t 
need to have a Windows folder to synchronize with these services – thus taking up 
space inside your virtual machine.

Figure 3: Yosemite cloud services available inside Windows

Figure 3: Yosemite cloud services available inside Windows

Similarly, these two Yosemite cloud services show up in the “Save As” dialogs in 
Office for Windows apps (Word, PowerPoint, Excel, etc.), as you can see in Figure 4. So, 
there is no extra step required in saving these files to a temporary location, and then 
manually moving them to the desired cloud.

Figure 4: Yosemite cloud services available in Office for Windows

Figure 4: Yosemite cloud services available in Office for Windows

Placing a Phone Call from a Windows App

In Yosemite, you can select a phone number in a document or web page, and 
have the Mac use your iPhone to call that number – an especially cool Yosemite feature! 
Parallels Desktop 10 Update 1 brings this cool feature to Windows apps. You just select 
a phone number, and then choose the “Call the number” menu item from the right-click 
menu, as you can see in Figure 5. The Notification Center on your Yosemite Mac will 
then present a notification which will place this call on your iPhone, as you can see in 
Figure 6

Figure 5: Call a phone number selected in IE

Figure 5: Call a phone number selected in IE

Figure 6: Placing the phone call from a notification

Figure 6: Placing the phone call from a notification

Note that to use this feature your Yosemite Mac and your iOS8 iPhone must be 
on the same wireless network, and both must be connected to iCloud Drive with the 
same Apple ID account.

iMessage and SMS Text Sharing 

In Parallels Desktop 10 Update 1 you can easily send selected text as a tweet, or 
post it to your Facebook page or to LinkedIn with simple menu item in a right-click menu 
– just like in Yosemite. You can see this being done in Figure 7 with text selected in IE. 
No need to re-type or even copy and paste the text.

Figure 7: Sending with Messages from Internet Explorer

Figure 7: Sending with Messages from Internet Explorer

Extensions

Yosemite provides third-party developers with the ability to add “extensions” to 
many parts of the Mac OS, and the Parallels developers have taken advantage of this to 
add new functionality to Spotlight, Notification Center, and QuickLook. In Spotlight 
(Figure 8) and QuickLook (Figure 9), you can see the current state of a virtual machine, 
and even modify its settings. In Notification Center (Figure 10), you can see the 
performance of a running virtual machine and see its resource utilization – how much of 
the CPU power of your Mac it is using and how much RAM it is occupying.

Figure 8: Spotlight extensions for Parallels Desktop virtual machines

Figure 8: Spotlight extensions for Parallels Desktop virtual machines

Figure 9: QuickLook extensions for Parallels Desktop virtual machines

Figure 9: QuickLook extensions for Parallels Desktop virtual machines

Figure 10: Notification Center extension showing the performance for Parallels Desktop virtual machines

Figure 10: Notification Center extension showing the performance for Parallels Desktop virtual machines

Windows 10 Technical Preview

Virtual machines in Parallels Desktop can be a safe, easy way to “try out” a new 
operating system or operating system update. This is especially useful when the 
operating system is still in beta. I have been doing this for years, and I wholeheartedly 
recommend this approach. You never know when a beta (or even an alpha or a early 
preview) operating system will reveal a bug or incompatibility, and when this early OS is 
in a virtual machine, the potential trouble is completely contained in the VM. 

When Windows 8 was in its various preview states (technical preview, developer 
preview, customer preview), the Parallels Desktop team made the installation of these 
early releases a one-button-push install, and LOTS of Parallels Desktop users took 
advantage of this. This showed us that many Mac users wanted to “kick the tires” of the 
next version of Windows, especially when the installation was so easy to do. 

Now that the Windows 10 Technical Preview is available, we decided to make its 
installation just as easy. 

So, Parallels Desktop 10 Update 1 includes the button you can see highlighted in the 
Figure 11. Just click on this button, answer a couple of configuration questions, and we 
will take care of the rest. The installation files for the Windows 10 Technical Preview will be downloaded, it will be installed in a VM, and the VM will be added to your Parallels 
Desktop Control Center, and it will be ready to run. The amount of time this will take 
depends greatly on your Internet connection speed, since the installation files total 
about 4 GB in size.

Figure 11: Windows 10 button in the New VM wizard

Figure 11: Windows 10 button in the New VM wizard

The Windows 10 Technical Preview includes integrated feedback tools, so if you are 
interested in giving Microsoft some feedback on Windows 10, its installation in Parallels 
Desktop 10 just takes a few clicks of your Mac mouse. I’ve already sent them about a 
half dozen pieces of feedback. 

Yosemite Look & Feel

Last, but not least, the user interface of Parallels Desktop 10 Update 1 has been 
refreshed with the Yosemite Look & Feel, including the larger window title bar, the new 
flat icons, and special looks for the new Yosemite “Dark” look. You can see several of 
these changes in Figure 12.

Figure 12: The Yosemite Look & Feel

Figure 12: The Yosemite Look & Feel

Yosemite Has Arrived! Everything You Need to Know + Exciting Features on Parallels Desktop 10

Hello, Yosemite! Image courtesy of Mashable.

Hello, Yosemite! Image courtesy of Mashable.

The hills are alive with the sound of Apple enthusiasts everywhere—Yosemite is finally here!

Gif courtesy of Oh No They Didn't

Gif courtesy of Oh No They Didn't

Believe it or not, we’re just as excited as you are! Mainly because, apart from all of the coolness we know is coming from Apple in Yosemite, this means some exciting new features in Parallels Desktop 10 for Mac. 

Here’s the rundown of Yosemite-only features in Parallels Desktop 10 for Mac:

  • Microsoft Office “Save as…” > Mac Clouds now includes iCloud Drive and Photo Library, in addition to Dropbox and Google Drive
  • Right click on a number in Windows app to call with iPhone
  • iMessage/SMS text sharing from Windows
  • Spotlight and Quick Look view improvements for both Parallels Desktop and virtual machines
  • Yosemite look and feel in Parallels Desktop
  • Notification Center extension lets you monitor your virtual machine

Plus: in addition to the features listed above, you get all of the other great features in Parallels Desktop 10 for Mac, which includes powerful performance, the best of OS X in Windows applications, and so much more. Check it out for yourself!

And don’t forget—if you plan to upgrade to Yosemite and are currently running Parallels Desktop for Mac, there are few housekeeping items to check off your list prior to upgrading:

If you're running Parallels Desktop 10 for Mac

If you’re running Parallels Desktop for Mac and are on our latest version (version 10), all you need to do is install the most current update in order to have full support and the new features from Yosemite working in your Windows virtual machine. Thankfully, this is easy to do—simply go to the Parallels Desktop menu, select Check for Updates, and install the latest build. You should do this right before upgrading to Yosemite.

If you're running an older version of Parallels Desktop for Mac

If you’re using Parallels Desktop 9, Yosemite is supported as a host  If you want to use Yosemite as a guest or use Yosemite features such as (the new Yosemite Look & Feel, Notification Center extensions, or Click to call a number on your iPhone) in Windows, you’ll need to upgrade to Parallels Desktop 10.

For more information on Yosemite compatibility and support (including for volume licensing and enterprise customers), check out last week’s blog post.