All A-Players: Week of March 22nd

I don't know about others, but I for one have had just about my fill of Apple Watch articles for the next couple weeks. Enough with the pricing debate, enough with the "Apple redefining itself" angle. This week, I thought I'd bring you guys some links with basically nothing to do with the Apple Watch. Full stop.

  • The GORUCK GR Echo — Tools and Toys - This post marked another in a series of backpack reviews over on Tools and Toys. Alvaro Serrano has quickly become one of my favorite writers and photographers on the web over the past few months, and this may be his best review piece yet. Even if you're not in the market for a traditional backpack like me, the photos alone make the piece a worthwhile read.

  • Fantastical 2 for Mac Review: Reinvented – MacStories - As I alluded to with a short link post earlier this week, Flexibits had a lot in store for us with the launch of Fantastical 2 for Mac. A full-on calendar UI, enhanced time zone features, and the ability to set up different "sets" of calendars all dotted the release notes. Federico Viticci of MacStories digs in with his signature in-depth touch, and the result is a great read. Out of the several reviews I read for the new app, his is the definite favorite.

  • Comparing my Fitbit One and iPhone 6 — Practically Efficient - With the Apple Watch launch coming up soon, (this is the only vaguely watch-related link I promise!) Eddie Smith takes us on two walks through which he finds out a little about how both the Fitbit and the iPhone's m8 motion coprocessor track steps and elevation. As someone who uses an iPhone to help stay active, I'd wondered a little about how the iPhone's tracking stacked up to a dedicated fitness tracker like the Fitbit. Eddie's findings made this a fascinating and encouraging read for me, and much like him, I find myself getting excited at the idea of how the Watch may help me stay even more active and health-conscious.

  • iTunes - Podcasts - Brent Schlender and Rick Tetzeli: Meet the Author by Events at the Apple Store - Another main part of my days this past week was influenced by the launch of the latest Steve Jobs Bio: Becoming Steve Jobs. I've really been enjoying digging into the book this week and this podcast interview, mediated by John Gruber, was a treat to listen to. My favorite part was definitely the Q&A with the authors, so if you give it a listen make sure to stick around for that.

  • A Faster & More Efficient Instapaper - Just yesterday Instapaper launched a quite decent upgrade to their iOS app: Speed reading, built-in textshots, and a much faster share extension all have been added to the app. I use Instapaper for the vast majority of my reading, and so these sorts of additions make that experience all the better. Thumbs up to Betaworks, keep it up!

Thats all for this week's links, I hope you all have a great next 7 days. Until next week.