Ken Walker, Online News Editor

Ken Walker

Ken Walker came to the Times in 1998, first as a copy editor and later as a news page designer. Today he helps edit the home page and writes for the Gadgets & Gizmos blog.


  1. 10 clever tricks you can do with your iPhone earpods


    That's what Apple calls them, by the way — "earpods." At least, that's what they call their newest ones. But John-Michael Bond's list of 10 things you can do with earpods (TUAW) will work with any of Apple's three-button headphone remotes. Fast-forward and rewind, handle incoming calls and more, all without pulling your iPhone from your pocket....

  2. Dozens of iPhone tricks you've probably never heard of


    Boy Genius Report called attention over the weekend to a pair of articles ticking off tons of iPhone tricks and features that you might not know are actual things — but that would save you tons of time and headaches, impress your friends and family members, make you the life of your next cocktail party, etc., etc....

  3. Before Saturday night concert, Joan Jett fills in as PA announcer


    Joan Jett and the Blackhearts were scheduled as the postgame entertainment Saturday as part of the Rays summer concert series — but Jett went in for the full game experience, taking over as PA announcer as well. "Joan Jett's doing pretty well announcing batters," tweeted Fox Sports Florida's Andrew Astleford (@aastleford). "I think she has a future behind a microphone."...

  4. Sooner or later, it all comes down to power


    There are a couple interesting posts out there today about gadgets that can help power your phone or tablet when you're traveling or your home Internet during a power outage. I can't vouch for either of them personally, but I'm definitely intrigued.

    The Wirecutter picked Cobra's CPP 300 SP as its best solar battery pack: "It gives you more power, faster charging, and a better-designed chassis than anything else currently available. Thanks to its dual-folding panels that you can angle towards the sun, it charges quickly in bright light and continues to charge late in the day, even under partly cloudy conditions and when obstructed from direct light. It also conveniently has built-in cords for input and output and the ability to charge two devices at once. What’s more, it was the only model equipped with a 2.1-amp port capable of charging high-draw devices like a tablet at full speed. Basically, it had the best design and the most complete feature set."...

    When closed, the CPP 300 SP has a footprint a little larger than a large smartphone.
  5. If you need something like Dropbox that's not Dropbox, here are a few ideas


    I love Dropbox. I've tried a few competitors — Google Drive,, SugarSync, SkyDrive (now OneDrive) — and I still use But Dropbox is the only one of those services I'm willing to pay for. I just haven't found an easier, more reliable alternative for saving something on one doohickey and opening it on that other one over there.

    All the same, Macworld's excellent Christopher Breen offers his thoughts today if you're looking for an alternative. One caveat: iPhone, iPad and iPod users might want to consider iCloud Drive — even though they won't get a gander at how it works until they see iOS 8, Apple's next operating system software upgrade due in the fall....

  6. World Cup: TV? iPhone? iPad? What you'll need to watch USA-Belgium today


    Team USA plays Belgium today in Salvador, Brazil, as the World Cup switches from a confusing round robin to a more straightforward playoff.

    There will be no lose-to-Germany-but-still-advance-to-the-next-round scenario this time. Either the Americans advance to the Round of Eight, or the Belgians do; the loser heads home.

    But one aspect of today's game is similar to the U.S. team's final match in group play — it happens at less-than-optimal time for the home television audience. ESPN will air it live at 4 p.m. on the East Coast, 1 p.m. out west....

    Jermaine Jones celebrates after scoring in the United States' group stage match against Portugal at Arena Amazonia in Manaus, Brazil. [Getty Images]
  7. World Cup: What you need to see USA-Germany today


    Posted a story this morning about what you'll need to watch the USA-Germany World Cup match that starts in about 10 minutes. Not much I haven't mentioned here before, but check it out.

  8. World Cup: TV? iPhone? What you need to watch USA-Germany


    Team USA plays Germany today at Recife, Brazil, in a game that will decide whether the U.S. advances to the 16-team elimination bracket in this year's soccer World Cup.

    The U.S. team's first two games kicked off at favorable times for watching on television back home; today's group finale will be smack in the middle of the workday — noon on the East Coast, 9 a.m. out west.

    The game will air on ESPN, and many ESPN subscribers will be able to watch a live Internet video stream for free at, or using the WatchESPN app on their phones or tablets....

    Soccer fans gather in Chicago's Grant Park to watch Saturday's  U.S.-Portugal game. Fans were turned away from the free event after the park's 10,000-person capacity was reached. [Getty Images]
  9. Old but still so good: Everyday technology we're getting wrong


    This BuzzFeed video is, like, four months old — but @NewsBreaker tweeted a link to it on today, makes it worth mentioning. Some are already pretty well known (the BuzzFeed folks would have a lot less trouble with that four-finger pinch gesture on their iPads if they tried a five-finger pinch instead), but there were some I'd never heard before this (OMG HOW TO COIL CABLES). It's short, and I've embedded it below. And you won't lose anything by muting the goofy music:...

  10. World Cup fans: Here's a full schedule with TV listings and legal streaming options


    David Pogue just tweeted a fantastic link to The streaming options are pretty simple if you're an English speaker in the United States with a cable subscription that includes ESPN, but there's still a lot of useful info here....

  11. 'Daily Show' destroys claims of Google Glass 'discrimination'


    Google Glass is an interesting case. All the buzz these days is about wearable technology, and the concept of a pair of glasses that could minimize distractions while offering useful, relevant information in an unobtrusive manner has some appeal. That being said, there's no question that the way this particular product has been executed has provoked a reaction from people who aren't sure whether Glass wearers are taking photos or video of them. (Understandably so. Would you feel comfortable in a restroom while someone was holding up a camera?)...

    Google co-founder Sergey Brin wears a Google Glass device.
  12. It's probably easier to watch the World Cup on your phone or tablet than you think


    Most of the time, watching big sports events live online is a pain. Typicallly it involves paying for a subscription or messing with illicit live streams that (rightly) give you the heebie-jeebies. I figured it would be the same way for the World Cup — and as a casual fan at most, there was pretty much no way I was paying for the privilege or dealing with the headache.

    But it's really amazingly easy, and pretty much free....

    Oscar of Brazil fights off Sime Vrsaljko of Croatia during the opening match of the World Cup.
  13. If you have an iPhone, iPad or a Mac, Apple just gave you a ton of nifty stuff to look forward to


    Apple unveiled the latest iteration of its operating system software for Macs today, calling it OS X Yosemite. A major theme of the announcement is a feature Apple calls Continuity, which aims to make your Mac and your iPhone and iPad work more seamlessly together.

    The feature aims to make it easier to start an email on your iPad, for example, and finish it on your Mac (or vice versa). Your MacBook will automatically connect to your iPhone, letting you use it as a speakerphone to place and receive calls while your phone stays in your pocket. SMS texts will now appear in Apple's messaging software. (On a Mac, iMessage currently only shows message conversations with other Apple devices.)...

    Apple senior vice president of software engineering Craig Federighi speaks about new updates to Apple's hardware and software Monday during Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference at the Moscone West center in San Francisco.
  14. Important safety tip: Don't track down your stolen iThing on your own


    The Unofficial Apple Weblog (TUAW, for short) makes an important point today, in discussing a recent story of Sarah Maguire, a California woman who tracked down the perpetrator who'd taken her phone (and her roommate's) and persuaded them to return them....

    "Sign in at or use the Find My iPhone app to see your missing iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, or Mac on a map," reads Apple's description. "And with the Lost Mode feature you don’t just see where your device is, you can track where it’s been. That way you can decide on your best course of action. You can immediately lock your device and send it a message with a contact number. Then whoever finds it can call you from the Lock screen without accessing the rest of the information on your device."
  15. Know anyone who's having trouble with their iPhone battery?


    Do them a favor, and refer them to this excellent article from a former Apple Store Genius Bar employee. There's a good chance it'll make a big difference.