MyAppleMenu - Oct 2015

Sat, Oct 31, 2015The Had-To-Keep-Secret Edition

Apple, AT&T Hail Decade Long Partnership, by Kavit Majthia, Mobile World Live

“You have to find someone special to believe in you,” said Cue. “Why didn’t we show them the device? Because we knew we were building something special. It was a game changer, and we had to keep it secret. We had to develop a close level of relationship with AT&T and there was a level of trust. This shows because we knew network traffic was going to go through the roof with this thing, and we needed an operator to commit billions on their infrastructure, all based on something they hadn’t even seen.”

“At the time, they were huge and we weren’t. We were relying on them.”

The New TeeVee

The New Apple TV: TidBITS Answers Your Questions, by Josh Centers, TidBITS

The fourth-generation Apple TV is now available for purchase and pre-orders have started arriving. Apple was kind enough to send me one before they go on sale, so I’m happy to answer your Apple TV questions.

There's no category in the app store, and there's no folders on your Apple TV.

New Apple TV Tidbits: Limited App Discovery, User Guide, Amazon Pulls Apple TVs, And More, by Joe Rossignol, MacRumors

In countries and regions that support Siri, the remote is called the Siri Remote. Elsewhere, it is called the Apple TV Remote, but has identical functionality otherwise. International users can easily access Siri by changing their Apple TV's region to the U.S. or other supported countries.

Periscope, Watch Disney And NBC Apps Launch On The New Apple TV, by Janko Roettgers, Variety

Clear My Weekend; Alto's Adventure Comes To Apple TV, by Steve Sande, Apple World Today

Now Kids Can Spend A Fun-Filled Day With Albert On Apple TV, by Sandy Stachowiak, AppAdvice

Apple TV And YouTube Red: The Truth Beyond The Hype, by Andrew Wallenstein, Variety

Both Apple TV and YouTube Red aren’t quite the breakthroughs their companies profess them to be. But it would be very premature to pronounce either of them disappointments. Because as underwhelming as they might seem out of the gate, they both have tremendous potential to evolve in ways that can recapture breakthrough status. Neither may be the seeming overnight sensations that the original YouTube or iPhone were, but that doesn’t mean they won’t get to a place where they can be almost as impactful.


OS X El Capitan Quietly Unlocked 10-Bit Color In iMacs And Mac Pros, by Michael Zhang, Petapixel

OS X El Capitan added some major features to the operating system when the update was released at the end of September 2015, but it appears that there was a pretty significant one that didn’t receive as much fanfare: 10-bit color.

Apple Plans To Start Selling The iPad Pro On November 11th, by Mark Gurman, 9to5Mac

Apple plans to start selling the 12.9-inch iPad Pro on Wednesday, November 11th via both its physical retail and online stores, according to multiple sources.

New Utah App Creates Safe Virtual Playground For Kids, by Devon Dewey, KSL


Apple Opens Cryptographic Libraries To Developers In Bid To Encourage More Security, by Roger Fingas, AppleInsider

Considerations For Choosing 3rd Party Swift Libraries, by Andrew Bancroft

While relying on 3rd party dependencies can provide you the benefit of not having to spend time implementing a portion of your app, realize that you’re essentially giving away little pieces of your app when you bring in a dependency.

You’re delegating away a certain level of control off to someone else who has no knowledge of or interest in the final outcome of your team’s app.

Do One Thing…, by Mike Loukides, Radar

I don't want barely distinguishable tools that are mediocre at everything; I want tools that do one thing and do it well.


Apple Voices Support For Houston Equal Rights Ordinance, by Olivia Plusinelli, Houston Busienss Journal

Antique Nightmares, by Jason Boog, Los Angeles Review of Books

2015 will be remembered as a major year in the history of horror podcasts. Three new horror hits blasted through iTunes this year: the Lore podcast, The Black Tapes Podcast, and Limetown. In March, supernatural thriller novelist Aaron Mahnke released the first episode of Lore. The show mines folklore and legend for true spooky stories. “Lore’s growth has been astronomical,” Mahnke told me in an email. “I could never have predicted the size of audience that now hits the PLAY button twice a month. March was the first month of the show, and Lore was downloaded about 1500 times. In September, the show was downloaded over 1 million times.”

Can You Search In Chinese?

The old Apple TV doesn't really support Chinese. When I had to search for YouTube videos with Chinese characters, for example, I had to use the iOS Remote app instead.

Given that even English-using customers are now having a difficult time entering English text for the new Apple TV, I think Apple TV is nowhere ready for the Chinese market yet.


Thanks for reading.

Fri, Oct 30, 2015The Rule-Of-Reason Edition

Apple Asks U.S. Supreme Court To Toss E-Books Antitrust Decision, by Mike Segar, Reuters

Apple in its petition said the June decision by the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New York contradicted Supreme Court precedent and would "chill innovation and risktaking."

In SCOTUS Petition, Apple Claims 2nd Circuit Used Wrong Antitrust Standard, by Alison Frankel, Reuters

The e-books antitrust scheme alleged by the Justice Department against Apple and five major book publishers was what’s known in antitrust lingo as a hub-and-spoke conspiracy, in which a central player supposedly enables industry competitors to fix their prices. Now Apple is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to clarify what standard of review should apply to the conduct of that central player: Is its alleged participation a per se violation of antitrust law, as price-fixing amongst competitors is deemed to be? Or should courts be required to evaluate the enabler’s actions under the more forgiving “rule of reason” standard, which takes into account the potentially pre-consumer consequences of restraints on trade?

Big Screen Entertainment

Apple TV Apps: Alto's Adventure, Crossy Road, Plex And More, by Joe Rossignol, MacRumors

With customers around the world beginning to receive their new Apple TVs over the coming days, developers have been busy readying the first apps and games for the set-top box. Below, we have rounded up some of the more interesting tvOS apps that are or will be available through the App Store on the new Apple TV. Some apps are still under review and may not be available immediately at launch.

Pangea Software Unveils Apple TV Game Lineup With 3DTV Support In Tow, by Dan Thorp-Lancaster, iMore

Pangea Software, a long-time game developer of games for Apple platforms, has announced its lineup of games for the new Apple TV. However, included in its announcement of 5 titles, Pangea noted that all of its games can be played in stereo-3D on any TV that is 3D-capable.

Look Out, Amazon: QVC To Launch Apple TV App With On-Screen “Speed Buy” Button, by Jacob Demmitt, Geekwire

Television shopping king QVC announced a new Apple TV app on Thursday that will let viewers quickly order products they see on the screen with a click of the remote.

Apple TV, Meet Xbox: How Microsoft Has Repositioned Its Game Console, by Janko Roettgers, Variety

The software giant launched its current-generation Xbox One with a somewhat familiar premise two years ago: Xbox One was supposed to be the all-in-one home entertainment system, bringing together live television, streaming services and gaming on one device, with one user interface. It was supposed to appeal as much to Netflix users as to gamers — which is very much how Apple is trying to position its new Apple TV today. [...] But Microsoft made an abrupt turnabout when its new CEO Satya Nadella took charge in early 2014.


Apple Releases 'Beats Pill+' App For Controlling Beats Pill+ Speaker On iOS And Android, by Juli Clover, MacRumors

Apple today debuted a new Beats Pill+ app for both iOS and Android users, providing a way for those who own the new Beats Pill+ speakers to control the speakers, check power levels, download software updates, adjust sound levels, and link multiple speakers together for different effects.

Napkin 1.5 Review: Quick And Detailed Markup Of Screen Captures And Images, by Glenn Fleishman, Macworld

As a tech writer, I have a bias towards programs that make it easier for me to communicate graphically, especially when a step-by-step process is involved.Napkin 1.5 helps enormously by letting me take an image—whether a photo or screen capture—and quickly annotate it in a way that looks professional and can be edited later.

If Pages Is Too Limiting For Your Print Projects, Check Out PrintLife, by Dennis Sellers, Apple World Today

For the past couple of years, Chronos’ PrintLife has offered a reasonable alternative to Apple’s own Pages when it comes to designing print. However, version 3.0 sports a completely redesigned the user interface which makes the software even easier to use (and it was pretty darn easy to start with).

Expo For Mac OS X Is A Fine DAM Tool, by Dennis Sellers, Apple World Today

The software helps you manage your digital assets, as well as assisting you in finding new images, clips, fonts and icons online.

Microsoft Band 2.0: Big Steps Forward Mean You Just Might Ditch Your Trainer, by Valentina Palladino, Ars Technica

The new [...] device boasts an improved design, making it a more "wearable" wearable, new sensors that detect floors climbed and UV exposure, and an online dashboard for Microsoft Health where you can create your own workouts. As a hybrid fitness device with many smartwatch-like features, it's hard to put the Microsoft Band into a (figurative) box. But Microsoft knew what it needed to fix the second time around—and what was best left untouched.


My Biggest Failure: On Launching Penultimate 6 For iPad, by Joshua Taylor, Medium

For many users, iOS automatically updates their apps. I knew this. Somehow though, I didn’t take into account the gravity of the fact that a user would open up their app one day and it would be completely different. The worst story I heard was someone that was taking notes in a university class, switched apps to look something up, and when they came back to the app, it had updated and they could no longer find their notes. I don’t think they use Penultimate anymore.


Apple’s Deep Learning Curve, byJack Clark, Bloomberg Businessweek

In the world of artificial intelligence, one of the year’s biggest coming-out parties is the Neural Information Processing Systems conference. Thousands of researchers from universities and software companies gather to share their work and wrestle with new ways to tailor software to people’s habits. At last year’s conference in Montreal, employees of Google, Microsoft, and IBM presented papers on teaching computers to work faster and smarter, such as by reading the house numbers in a photo to determine an address. But one player was conspicuously absent: Apple. This year, Chinese search giant Baidu and Facebook, along with Google and Microsoft, are slated to present papers. Apple isn’t.

A Harder Road Ahead, by The Economist

In all, most multinationals would be wise to tough it out in China, and adapt to its changing markets. Those which do so will find there are still fortunes to be made. And though their advantages over local firms are diminished, they still have some strengths, in technology and marketing, that they can exploit. As Xiang Bing, dean of Beijing’s Cheung Kong business school, puts it, multinationals are no longer sitting comfortably at the very front of the plane, but compared with Chinese firms, they are “still flying in business class.”

The Rating Game: How Uber And Its Peers Turned Us Into Horrible Bosses, by Josh Dzieza, The Verge

The rating systems used by these companies have turned customers into unwitting and sometimes unwittingly ruthless middle managers, more efficient than any boss a company could hope to hire. They’re always there, working for free, hypersensitive to the smallest error. All the algorithm has to do is tally up their judgments and deactivate accordingly.

Vast Wasteland

Can anyone tell me if there are anything to watch on Singapore's version of the Apple TV?


Thanks for reading.

Thu, Oct 29, 2015The Speaktenna Edition

Inside Apple's Perfectionism Machine, by Lance Ulanoff, Mashable

It's a recurrent theme in my conversations with Schiller and John Ternus, vice president of Mac and iPad engineering. As they see it, much of the innovation — certainly something like the speaktenna — inside the 2-pound, 0.5-inch-thick laptop would not have been possible without disparate teams working together.

In the case of the speaktenna, Apple engineers did everything in their power to fit the maximum amount of technology possible into the tiny anodized aluminum chassis. This included creating new battery chemistry and forms to support a terraced battery design that marries perfectly with matching cutouts in the chassis. There's even a deeper level of terracing cutouts in the body that aren't for more battery power, but to cut down on the overall system weight.

"We realized we could not create a great antennae and a great speaker because we'd be compromising," Ternus said. "Both of those elements need space. Antenna elements are small, but they need cavity; they need space to resonate."

The answer was to make the speaker and antenna teams collaborate to create something new.

Apple's Newest Software Update Will Shut Off Your iPhone Alarm While You Sleep, by Jay Hathaway, Gawker

All signs point to Apple’s new overnight update feature, which asks you if you want it to install the latest iPhone operating system while you sleep. Or, apparently, oversleep. What the update feature doesn’t tell you is that when it’s done installing the new system software in the middle of the night, it restarts the phone and switches off any alarms you had set on it.

Television's Future

The New Apple TV: Apple Ushers App Developers Onto Their Customers’ Biggest Screen, by John Yanarella, Universal Mind

The new Apple TV is set to become a one-stop hub for a broad range of experiences, everything from quick glances for vital information to new kinds of immersive entertainment, communication, education, and e-commerce experiences.

The potential for tvOS apps goes well beyond media consumption and gaming—we can expect to see enterprise dashboards; collaboration and planning tools; dashboards and configurators for the Internet of Things (IoT); educational courses, training videos and manuals; innovative use of ResearchKit to facilitate life-changing medical studies; and new kinds of online showrooms and storefront experiences.

The Apple TV Gets Smart, by Walt Mossberg, Re/code

And, as good as Siri has become, it feels limited on this device. It needs to work on all or most of the apps, not a few. It doesn’t even work in the Apple Music app. And it’s odd that it can’t handle all the queries that it can on an iPhone, or speak to you.

I don’t know when, if ever, Apple will reinvent TV. But this isn’t the moment. I can say that, if I were buying a streaming box right now, this is the one I’d buy, if only for the promise of lots of apps.

By making the set-top box a part of its giant app and services ecosystem, the company is moving Apple TV into a future that’s much broader and bigger than Roku’s or Amazon’s. And that makes the case. In effect, while it may not have reinvented all of TV, Apple has reinvented the streaming set-top box.

The New Apple TV Invigorates The Set-Top Box, by Brian X. Chen, New York Times

Apple TV is on the path to turning the television set into a smarter connected screen. And though it’s the most expensive of the bunch, it will accrue more value over time as software developers expand its capabilities with more apps and games.

The Apple TV You’ve Always Wanted Is Finally Here, by John Paczkowski, BuzzFeed

It’s intuitive, uncomplicated, and — crucially — thoughtful. Is that a ridiculous thing to say about a set-top box? Probably. But it’s also true.

New Apple TV Review: Loads Of Potential—and Lots Of Bugs, by David Pogue, Yahoo!

Apple points out that Apple TV runs a 1.0 operating system, called tvOS. It promises to squash these bugs very quickly. Indeed, a couple of those bugs have disappeared in the last 24 hours. It also blames some of the bugs on the app makers. For example, that “Who’s in this episode?” thing work only in iTunes and Netflix shows, which explains why it doesn’t work in the Fox app.

All of that is fine, but you have to wonder: Why is Apple still frantically squashing bugs three days before the product ships? (The answer is, no doubt, “Because we can’t miss the holiday season, no matter what.”)

Siri Adds Voice To Apple TV But Where's The 4K?, by Edard C. Baig, USA Today

After more than three years, the arrival of an improved Apple TV is something Apple fans will surely cheer. But if you're looking for something less expensive or have or will soon get a 4K TV, you're best turning to one of Apple's streaming rivals.

Apple TV’s Siri Search Will Soon Include Apple Music, by Brendan Klinkenberg, BuzzFeed

Apple confirmed to BuzzFeed News that Siri is coming to Apple Music on Apple TV at the beginning of next year. [...] Extending Apple TV’s universal search to Apple Music turns the streaming box into a voice-controlled music player. It’s a savvy consolidation of the living room entertainment system, positioning the new Apple TV as a sort of one-stop shop for video, gaming, and music.


Microsoft Is Merging Its Outlook And Sunrise Apps, by Tom Warren, The Verge

It's a refined look that brings small, but useful, features like the date on the calendar button, and visual cues to make it easier to navigate Outlook for iOS. Calendar event details have been tweaked to provide more information, and overall the app just looks a lot better.

Microsoft’s Email Boss On How Email Is So Not Dead Yet, by Ina Fried, Re/code

Sonos Play:5 (2015 Edition) Review: It’s Difficult To Imagine A Better-Sounding Networked Speaker At This Price, by Michael Brown, TechHive

Sonos knocks one out of the park with the all-new Play:5. This is a spectacular speaker either on its own or as part of a whole-home audio system.

How To Turn Off Your Monitor Without Turning Off Your Mac, by Topher Kessler, MacIssues


What Makes Good Code, by Erica Sadun

Apple News Format Docs Appear In iOS Developer Library, by Steven Sande, Apple World Today


Why Apple Pay’s Canadian Launch Bypassed Banks, by David Berman and Tim Kiladze, The Globe and Mail

A source said the launch likely had less to do with Apple’s strategy for entering Canada specifically, and more to do with a global push that aims to negotiate by credit-card network rather than bank by bank.

BBC iPlayer App Coming To Apple TV 'In Coming Months', by Leo Kelion, BBC

The catch-up app is not ready to launch alongside the revamped set top box when it goes on sale this week, but the broadcaster signalled it would be soon.

Flipboard, Once-Hot News Reader App, Flounders Amid Competition, by Douglas Macmillan, Wall Street Journal

In recent weeks, the news reader app’s co-founder, Evan Doll, and its chief technology officer, Eric Feng, have left, adding to the talent drain in the past year that includes the heads of finance, product and revenue.

The exodus comes as Flipboard’s investors, which bet $210 million on the company, have put more pressure on co-founder and Chief Executive Officer Mike McCue to revive the business model or find a buyer, according to people familiar with the matter.

How Apps Can Help (And Harm) The Homeless, by Laura Bliss, The Atlantic

Darcel Jackson wants technology in the hands of San Francisco’s homeless. Homeless himself for a stint last year, Jackson knows firsthand how a lack of Internet and mobile access can foil prospects of finding a job, a home, and stability when you’re living on the streets or in shelters. It’s a digital divide underscored by the wealth of technology parading around and even building the city.

The Future

Thanks for reading. Now go watch some TV.

Wed, Oct 28, 2015The Strong-Finish-To-A-Very-Strong-Year Edition

Demand For iPhone Drives Apple Profit, But Outlook Is Muted, by Katie Benner, New York Times

Over all, Apple posted a profit of $11.1 billion for its fiscal fourth quarter, up 31 percent from a year ago. Revenue was $51.5 billion, up 22 percent from last year. The results exceeded Wall Street estimates. Yet while the performance was bolstered by sales of the iPhone — Apple said that it sold 48 million iPhones in the quarter, up from 39 million in the same period last year — the company was more cautious about sales for the key holiday sales period.


Mr. Cook for the most part shrugged off the growth question. In the conference call, he said Apple’s full fiscal year revenue growth was equivalent to that of almost 90 percent of the companies in the Fortune 500. Apple delivered “a strong finish to a very strong year,” even with a strong dollar that has forced the company to raise prices in many of its markets around the world, he said.

Apple Pay Is Expanding To Australia And Canada With American Express, by Nick Statt, The Verge

Apple today announced an expansion of its mobile payments service Apple Pay in two new countries, Australia and Canada, for owners of American Express cards. CEO Tim Cook broke the news on Apple's fourth-quarter earnings call today, saying the company wanted to bring Apply Pay to more "key global markets."

Apple’s Q4 2015: iPads Are Still The Only Dark Spot In A $51.5B Quarter, by Andrew Cunningham, Ars Technica

Apple sold 9.88 million iPads in Q4 of this year compared to 12.32 million last year. It made Apple $4.28 billion in revenue, about 8.3 percent of the company by revenue. The last time the iPad grew year-over-year was Q1 of 2014, and it's not a coincidence that its decline accelerated at around the same time that Apple introduced larger iPhones.

What Chinese Slowdown? Apple’s Sales Double In China On iPhone Growth, by Alice Turong, Quartz

“Frankly, if I were to shut off my web and shut off the TV and just lookat how many customers are coming in our stores regardless of whetherthey’re buying, how many people are coming online, and in additionlooking at our sales trends,” Cook said, “I wouldn’t know there was anyeconomic issue at all in China.”

CEO Tim Cook: Apple 'Counting On' Channel Partners For Enterprise Sales, by Lindsey O'Donnell, CRN

During Apple's earnings call for the fourth quarter, ended Sept. 26, Cook said the growth in Apple's enterprise segment -- rising 40 percent year over year to $25 billion in revenue -- was due in part to the company's blockbuster enterprise deals with vendors like IBM and Cisco. But beyond that, he said, the company's indirect sales -- through channel partners -- also played a big role in appealing to the commercial market.

This Is Tim: Apple's CEO On iPhones 6s, China, And More, transcribed by Serenity Caldwell and Jason Snell

Talk to Me

Siri’s Fuzziness And Friction, by Riccardo Mori

And indeed, Siri is the kind of interface where, when everything works, there’s a complete lack of friction. But when it does not work, the amount of friction involved rapidly increases: you have to repeat or rephrase the whole request (sometimes more than once), or take the device and correct the written transcription. Both actions are tedious — and defeat the purpose. It’s like having a flesh-and-bone assistant with hearing problems.

Siri And Cortana Sound Like Ladies Because Of Sexism, by Jessi Hempel, Wired

The world is about to start sounding even more feminine, as voice systems pop up in things that are not phones and prove to be a more effective interface than keyboards. Siri is an integral element to navigating the newly announced Apple TV. The Nest smoke detector interacts with users via a female voice. We prize gender diversity in plenty of other areas; why does most of our tech sound so female?


New Yale ResearchKit App Aims To Prevent Pregnancy Loss, by Karen N. Peart, YaleNews

One of the greatest joys for expectant parents is the birth of their child — and one of the greatest tragedies is the loss of that child. Now, Yale physician scientist Dr. Harvey J. Kliman, has developed an iPhone app that helps women contribute to research that aims to decrease the chance of pregnancy loss due to an undersized placenta, the fetal organ that provides nourishment to the fetus.

British Red Cross Emergency App Lets You Look After Loved Ones From Afar, by Wiltshire Times

Providing practical information on what to do next in a range of emergencies including flooding, power outages and even terror threats, the app is available on Android, iPad and iPhone.

Scanbot Is Better Than Ever Thanks To A New Magic Color Filter And More, by Joe White, AppAdvice

How To Remove Old Devices From Text Forwarding On An iPhone, by Glenn Fleishman, Macworld


Why Software Outsourcing Doesn't Work ... Anymore, by Yegor Bugayenko


Apple Shares Humorous New iPhone 6s Ad Starring Bill Hader, by Juli Clover, MacRumors

Apple today shared yet another new ad for the iPhone 6s, this time focusing on the Siri personal assistant and the wireless "Hey Siri" feature built into the new device.

Everyone’s Trying To Kill The iPhone By Copying It, by Davie Pierce, Wired

There’s been a subtle shift recently, though. In virtually every meeting I’ve taken with a manufacturer during the last six months, people have spoken openly about how they’re competing with, and improving upon, Apple’s stuff. Rather than offering gimmicky eye-tracking features or touting their removable batteries, they’re talking about cameras, about design, and about delighting users. They’re taking on Apple’s products on Apple’s terms.

Related Or Not?

Two things happened between last night and this morning.

One: Last night, just before bedtime, I updated my iPhone to the latest version of iOS. 9.1, if you must know.

Two: This morning, just before I step out of my apartment, I discover all of the offline music in my Apple Music app is gone.

I am not sure if they are related. But the end result is a day without music.


Thanks for reading.

Tue, Oct 27, 2015The Control-Of-Internal-Storage Edition

Apple TV Is A Radical Rethinking Of Your Relationship With The Hardware And Games You Own, by Dave Tach, Polygon

There's a group of technologies at the core of the new Apple TV — and other Apple devices you may already own — that the Cupertino, California-based company created to ease technological burdens. It's called App Thinning, and Apple is already employing it to make apps more efficient and users less confused.

To do this, Apple is asserting control of the Apple TV's internal storage, adding and deleting data as it deems necessary without user input. But will consumers see the benefits or become annoyed when their devices automatically purge and re-download data?

All of this requires some work on a developer's behalf, but it doesn't seem onerous. It also requires Apple to manage and deliver a vast array of on-demand resources consistently and, by design, transparently. That's not trivial, and though Apple has improved since the days of MobileMe, it's not a company with a sterling cloud-services reputation.


Apple’s Location For Its Official Singapore Store Confirmed?, by Tech In Asia

The announcement started innocently enough: fitness chain Pure Fitness issued a statement saying it will be closing its branch in Knightsbridge, a distinctive retail building along Singapore’s premier shopping belt Orchard Road. Oddly, it mentions in passing that “Pure and other tenants will be handing back space to make way for the opening of a new Apple store in late 2016.”

Rumors Abound Of Apple's First Singapore Store, by Aza Wee Sile, CNBC

But the choice of location may be considered unusual, because Samsung, Apple's fiercest smartphone rival, advertises on the facade of Knightsbridge on one of Orchard Road's largest LED screens. A Knightsbridge spokesperson confirmed that Samsung has been the LED board's longest tenant, with no date for the end of the advertising contract.

If this happens, it will be the first Apple Store in South-East Asia.


Apple Finally Rolls Out Carrier Billing For iTunes, Starting In Germany With O2, by Ingrid Lunden, TechCrunch

At long last, Apple is adding a way for people to pay for purchases on iTunes beyond credit or debit cards — a move that points to the company sharpening its focus on marketing the iPhone to a wider set of users. Apple — working first with O2/Telefonica in Germany — will now let people pay for items using carrier billing in iTunes.

Facebook Bolstering iOS Notifications Tab With Sports Scores, Birthdays, More, by Stephen Hall, 9to5Mac

Among the things that Facebook says it is adding to the Notifications tab are friends and family “milestones” (which include birthdays, major life events, and the like), sports scores and television notifications based on the pages you have already liked, as well as events that are around the corner (but, seemingly, only those that you’ve already joined).

Notes Exporter Backs Up All Your Apple Notes In Plain Text, by Thorin Klosowski, Lifehacker

Power Manger 4.5 For OS X Adds New Triggers, Tasks, More, by MacTech


Apple Stores Will Send Some iPhone 6/6s Phones For Off-Site Repairs, Offering 16GB Loaners, by Mark Gurman, 9to5Mac

In an effort to reduce wait times at Genius Bars within Apple Stores, Apple this week will launch a new repair program for the iPhone 6, 6s, 6 Plus and 6s Plus in select stores across the United States, Europe, and Japan, according to several employees. Rather than completing all repairs in store, the new program will allow Apple Store Genius Bars to determine that these phones should be shipped to an off-site repair center if the issue falls into one of three categories.

Apple Shares New 'Half Court' Ad Showing Off Live Photos On iPhone 6s, by Juli Clover, MacRumors

In the "Half Court" ad, the iPhone 6s is used to capture a half-court shot made by Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry, which is then played back again.

The Mysterious Case Of Apple And The Elusive Angela Ahrendts, by Vanessa Friedman, New York Times

In 2013, when Ms. Ahrendts was poached with great fanfare from Burberry, where she was chief executive, fashion speculated that she might become the friendlier, more stylish, face of Apple; in her former job, she had been known for her communication skills and charm, and Apple is not known for its female executives. The potential upside of having her as both a manager and an ambassador seemed high. Yet since starting last year, [...] she has largely disappeared from public view.

The Inside Story Of Surface Book, Microsoft’s Next Big Thing, by David Pierce, Wired

Surface is Microsoft’s attempt to take back what the PC market ceded to the MacBook. But it’s more than that: According to Panay, Surface is about reinventing categories. “How could we possibly feel proud of making the best laptop? That wasn’t reinventing anything.” Microsoft is a company the world left behind; Panay is instrumental in its bid to catch up, and part of the reason why is because he knows that building better laptops is exactly how you don’t blow peoples’ minds.

So Panay’s team set a different goal: to reinvent the laptop. They spent two years designing, prototyping, and fine-tuning—all to get to the Surface Book that goes on sale today. It’s the product of everything Microsoft has learned from making the first Surface machines, and from watching Apple eat its lunch. It’s a story right out of Cupertino, really: A small group of creatives sits in a room together, passionately slaving over every tiny detail of a product until it’s perfect. To go after Apple, Microsoft learned from Apple—and then found a few places to take right turns toward the future it imagines. It cost Panay much more than one night’s sleep.

Microsoft’s Giant New Retail Store Is Very Different From An Apple Store, by Will Oremus, Slate

You won't find any MacBooks here!

The Future Of News Is Not An Article, by Alexis Lloyd, NYT Labs

The Particles approach suggests that we need to identify the evergreen, reusable pieces of information at the time of creation, so that they can be reused in new contexts. It means that news organizations are not just creating the “first draft of history”, but are synthesizing the second draft at the same time, becoming a resource for knowledge and civic understanding in new and powerful ways.

Welcome To Apple's World

no one raindrop believes they are to blame for the flood.

— Luke Wroblewski (@lukew) October 26, 2015


Thanks for reading.

Mon, Oct 26, 2015The Shipping-Later-This-Week Edition

Apple Begins Accepting Online Orders For New Apple TV, by Eric Slivka, MacRumors

In line with the target date announced by Tim Cook last week, Apple is now allowing customers to place online orders for the new Apple TV set-top box. The new Apple TV is available with either 32 GB of storage for $149 or 64 GB for $199, and orders will begin shipping to customers later this week, with the earliest deliveries being set for October 30 for those who opt for one-day shipping.


Apple’s Magic Trackpad 1 V. Magic Trackpad 2: The Carpal Tunnel Smackdown, by David Kravets, Ars Technica

The new trackpad is about 20 percent wider, and its surface seems smoother than the previous model. I don't know how long that will last, or whether it's just because the new model hasn't yet been assaulted with my Cheetos-encrusted fingers—yet. But the smoother the finger glide, the less taxing it is on your hands and wrists.

'Hey, Siri!!' My Week's Drive With Apple CarPlay, by Jefferson Graham, USA Today

She may be hard of hearing sometime, frustrating with her odd answers, but when she gets it right, Siri is a wonderful, and safe, companion for the car. We may just have to learn to love her.

AppSnap: App Uses Technology To Help Calm Emotions, by Tracy Frank, Grand Forks Herald


Apple Posts New iPhone 6s Camera, Siri Commercials, by Federico Viticci, MacStories

Apple aired three new iPhone 6s ads today, showcasing the device's new Camera and Siri hands-free capabilities.

The PC Is Passé. What Now?, by Jean-Louis Gassée, Monday Note

Microsoft is in a different game. With no more than 3% market share, the Windows Phone OS doesn’t enjoy the support of a lively ecosystem. Growing it to assume the role of a laptop- or desktop-class OS is technically feasible… it’s a Mere Matter of Software. But unlike Android and iOS it doesn’t have a broad base of hardware to run on. Microsoft would need to evangelize OEMs on a new software/hardware combo, one that would compete with existing Windows devices. Not likely.

Actually, one can’t help but wonder how long Microsoft will keep pouring money into Windows Phone devices… or into Windows hybrids and laptops, for that matter. At $1B or more per quarter, these devices can’t be bringing much to the bottom line. Microsoft is generating nice numbers in other parts of its business. One day, the company will have to more fully dedicate itself to what it does best.

Microsoft Goes Upscale With Fifth Avenue Flagship Store, by Nick Wingfield, New York Times

The bricks-and-mortar alternatives for showing new Microsoft products in their best light are not great. The number of electronics stores has dwindled, leaving just one giant in the United States, Best Buy. And while the stores of wireless carriers are good for putting smartphones in front of the public, category-bending tablets and laptops often require explanations from more-trained specialists.

“I think the stores are an important part of interacting with our customers and having them realize the full breadth of what Microsoft brings end-to-end,” Amy Hood, Microsoft’s chief financial officer, said in a phone interview last week.

No More Pencils, No More Books, by Will Oremus, Slate

While the thinkers are arguing, textbook publishers are acting. With their traditional business models under pressure, they’ve begun to reinvent themselves as educational technology companies. They’re selling schools and colleges on a new generation of digital courseware—ALEKS is just one example—that takes on much of the work that teachers used to do. The software isn’t meant to replace teachers, they insist. Rather, it’s meant to free them to focus on the sort of high-level, conceptual instruction that only a human can provide.

Not Ordering Yet

When will Apple TV get Angry Birds?


Thanks for reading.

Sun, Oct 25, 2015The No-Limit-Data-Plan-Mindsets Edition

Wi-Fi Assist: A $5 Million Mess, by Alf Watt, Medium

Wi-Fi Assist, then, is an attempt to prevent end uses from feeling punished by the failure of the network. But at a high cost to the end user. It salves the pain of being disconnected but puts the user at the mercy of their cellular providers who know all to well how much they are willing to pay to forgo that particular kind of suffering.

The real solution is for the groups at Apple who design, implement and support networking to communicate better with themselves and outside groups, and for management to step out of their very comfortable no-limit data plan mindsets and consider the costs, both emotional and financial, of the decisions they make to their end users.

The Plum-O-Meter: Weighing Plums Using 3D Touch In Swift, by FlexMonkey

Here at FlexMonkey Towers, the ever beautiful Mrs FlexMonkey and I love to spend our Sunday mornings luxuriating in bed drinking Mimosas, listening to The Archers omnibus and eating some lovely plums. Being a generous sort of chap, whenever I pull a pair of plums from the freshly delivered Fortnum & Mason's hamper, I always try to ensure she has the larger of the two. However, this isn't always easy, especially after the third of fourth breakfast cocktail.

3D Touch to the rescue! My latest app, the Plum-O-Meter, has been specifically designed to solve this problem. Simply place two delicious plums on the iPhone's screen and the heavier of the two is highlighted in yellow so you can hand it to your beloved without fear of being thought of as a greedy-guts.


Review: Mophie’s Juice Pack H2Pro Is A Truly Waterproof iPhone 6 Case With 110% Extra Battery Life, by Jeremy Horwitz, 9to5Mac

Well, it does what it promises to do: it’s waterproof and delivers (more than) a complete battery recharge to the iPhone 6 inside. Additionally, it’s easy to open and close, which I don’t take for granted with waterproof iPhone cases. Expect to compromise a little on sonic performance once your iPhone’s sealed in, but that’s no huge surprise given how most waterproof cases work, nor is the price, which includes a waterproofing premium over Mophie’s otherwise comparably-equipped Juice Pack Air.

In Case You Didn’t Know, /Me Works In Messages On Mac, by Drew Olanoff, TechCrunch


Why Growing Old The Silicon Valley Way Is A Prescription For Loneliness, by Evgeny Morozov, The Guardian

What’s at stake here is not so much the final outcome – ie whether old people get care or not. To frame the argument this way would be to stack the deck in favour of Silicon Valley: given enough sensors and data-processing capacity, these companies can and will provide any service – and on terms that beat most incumbent providers. However, when it comes to care, the process can be as important as the outcome, for many values that we hold dear – dignity, for example – are the properties of processes, not their outcomes.

Why Self-Driving Cars Must Be Programmed To Kill, by MIT Technology Review

People are in favor of cars that sacrifice the occupant to save other lives—as long they don’t have to drive one themselves.

Work All Day

Apple, I guess, sees having thin devices with all-day battery life (where all-day means 8 to 10 hours) as a competitive advantage. Having thick devices with more battery life is not important, because it will not trump competitors with devices of the same thickness but with 'only' 8 to 10 hours of battery life.


Thanks for reading.

Sat, Oct 24, 2015The Grasping-At-Reasons Edition

Apple's EULA Gives It License To Invade Your Privacy, Government Claims, by Andrew Crocker and Parker Higgins, Electronic Frontier Foundation

Apple filed a reply to this brief that matches our position that the government has overreached: "The fact that Apple’s devices include software, and that such software comes with licensing requirements, does not change anything. See Reply at 13-15. Apple’s licensing agreement does not establish a connection between Apple and the private data its customers store on their devices. It does not, for example, permit Apple to invade its customers’ devices uninvited or prohibit those customers from re-selling their devices to someone else absent consent from Apple. It merely places limitations on the customers’ use and redistribution of Apple’s software (limitations that are common to the industry)."

DOJ Dismisses Apple's Arguments Against Decrypting iOS Communications, by Dell Cameron, Daily Dot

Andrew Crocker, a staff attorney at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, which has filed a brief in the case, said it's irrational for the court to compel Apple to turn over information it doesn't already possess. “This is just the government sort of grasping at reasons why Apple is somehow already involved in the case,” he told the Daily Dot by phone.

The Justice Department's flat-out rejection of Apple's brand-integrity concerns was dismissed too hastily, says Crocker. “The government sort of waved its hand and said ‘those aren't relevant concerns here.’”


Apple Launches iCloud For Windows 5, Adds iCloud Photo Library Access, by MacNN

Now on version 5, the utility allows users of Windows 7 and newer access to and allows modification of photos, videos, mail, calendar, files, and other data stored in Apple's cloud storage service.

Review: The Philips Hue Bridge 2.0 Brings Apple's HomeKit Bliss To The Popular Lighting System, by Brent Dirks, AppAdvice

6 Disk Utility Changes In El Capitan, by Jonny Evans, Computerworld

Disk Utility has stayed more or less the same for years, but Apple has given the Mac power user’s much-loved maintenance tool a big overhaul in El Capitan, making it look different and removing familiar tools, including the popular "Repair Permissions" command.


Social Anxiety, by Brent Simmons, Inessential

To Reach Seniors, Tech Start-Ups Must First Relate To Them, by Paula Span, New York Times

“Our job is to make our patients’ health problems as little a part of their lives as possible,” Dr. Covinsky said. “My fear is that if you make people conscious of falling all the time, they’ll just stop walking.”

Éteindre La Radio

It is the first time in my history: I stepped into a taxi last night, and instead of having the usual drivel from local radio stations blasting out of the radio, I found the taxi driver listening to a learning-French on a book-on-tape.

I haven't found any taxi driver listening to podcasts yet, though.


Thanks for reading.

Fri, Oct 23, 2015The Publisher-Partners Edition

Apple News Arrives In The UK With 14 Newspaper And Magazine Partners, by Mark Sweney, The Guardian

Apple’s News app has launched in the UK with a range of publisher partners including the BBC, Telegraph, Guardian, Sun and Sky News.

iTunes U Updated With iPad Pro Support, Grade Book Improvements, More, by Chance Miller, 9to5Mac

Perhaps most notably, this update a design that better takes advantage of the larger display of the forthcoming iPad Pro. The iPad Pro will likely be incredibly popular among the education market, so it makes sense that Apple updated one the top education apps prior to the device’s launch.

Apple CEO Tim Cook Talks About “Massive Change” In The Auto Industry, by Andrei Nedelea, Carscoops

Now it seems they’re also setting the stage for the eventual reveal of their (probably self-driving) car with statements such as Tim Cook’s announcement that the automotive industry is in for a “massive change.” The CEO obviously didn’t back that up with any kind of palpable arguments, yet it does build the hype surrounding the idea.


Instagram Launches ‘Boomerang’ App To Create And Share Animated Photos, by Federico Viticci, MacStories

Boomerang has no support for Live Photos and is, in fact, positioned as something else entirely – a mini video obtained by stitching together pictures and looping them forward and backward in a mesmerizing animation.

Runkeeper Releases Standalone Apple Watch App, by Steven Sande, Apple World Today

Yes, that means that you can leave your iPhone at home now when you go out for a run.

Facebook Implements Fix For iOS App Battery Draining Issues, by Juli Clover, MacRumors

Facebook's newest iOS update, out today, fixes a major battery draining bug that some Facebook users have been experiencing in recent weeks. Affected users were seeing large amounts of battery drain on their iPhones due to Facebook running in the background, something that happened even when background app refresh was toggled off in the Settings app.

Interface Tweaks For El Capitan, by Kirk McElhearn, Intego

When you use a Mac, you probably want to adjust things so it's exactly right for the way you work. There are lots of ways you can tweak El Capitan to customize the way it displays. You can tweak the menu bar, alter the Dock, change Desktop wallpaper, zoom the cursor to make it bigger, and more. In this article, I'll tell you how to customize the way El Capitan looks and make it easier to work with your Mac.

Using iCloud Photo Library With A Library Bigger Than The Main Hard Drive, by Glenn Fleishman, Macworld

Here’s the answer: Get an external 1TB hard drive.


An Iowa Artist Recorded An Entire Album ... Using His iPad, by Matthew Leimkuehler, The Des Moines Register

He utilized four different applications on the iPad — Voice Recorder, GarageBand, Final Touch and Audio Mastering — to harness a sound he enjoyed and wanted to release. Having no professional training in recording, he spent almost 8 months recording the 10-song release, which dropped Oct. 6.

New Study Finds Siri More Distracting Than Google Now While Driving, by Joe Rossignol, MacRumors

No (Spoken) Words

I live in a city. I take public transport, I work in a cubicle. I am constantly surrounded by people.

Maybe that's why I've never used Siri.


Thanks for reading.

Thu, Oct 22, 2015The Refrain-From-Recording Edition

Apple Releases iOS 9.1 With New Emoji, Live Photos Improvements, by Juli Clover, MacRumors

iOS 9.1 includes an update for Live Photos, which now sense when the iPhone is raised or lowered to refrain from recording unnecessary movements.

Apple Releases OS X 10.11.1 El Capitan With New Emoji, Mail Improvements And Office 2016 Bug Fix, by Juli Clover, MacRumors

Apple Adds Find My Friends App To iCloud On The Web, by Benjamin Mayo, 9to5Mac

Apple Releases iTunes 12.3.1 With Stability And Performance Improvements, by Juli Clover, MacRumors


Can An App Help Detect Autism?, by Emily Matchar, Smithsonian

Now, a team of researchers at Duke University has released a free app, called Autism & Beyond, to mechanize part of the autism screening process. The app is available to anyone with an iPhone who is willing to take part in a Duke study.

Qapital (For iPhone), by Jill Duffy, PC Magazine

A new player in the personal finance app space, Qapital (for iPhone only), focuses on getting you to save every time you do little actions in your day. If you buy a latte every morning, Qapital can round up the price and stick the change in a savings account. Or you can set a rule so that if you come in under budget for your monthly commuting expenses, Qapital puts the balance into a vacation fund. It's a well-developed app that does a great job of gamifying savings.

Hands On: Clipcast 1.2.0 (OS X, iOS), by MacNN

When Double-Click Stops Working In El Capitan, by Glenn Fleishman, Macworld

Fortunately, Dexter wrote back with a solution—one I should have thought of, but I haven’t seen crop up in years: in the Mouse/Trackpad preference pane, the double-click speed had been cranked down to the slowest setting.


Apple Says New tvOS Apps Must Support Siri Remote In Updated App Store Review Guidelines, by Mikey Campbell, AppleInsider

Under a new App Store Review Guideline's Functionality clause, app submissions will be rejected if their core functionality does not work with the upcoming Apple TV's Siri remote, which features touchpad and voice input. An app can, however, provide enhanced functionality in connection with a game controller or other peripheral, Apple says.

Apple Invites Developers To Begin Submitting tvOS Apps For Review, by Eric Slivka, MacRumors

Following today's slew of software updates, including a golden master of tvOS for developers and a release of Xcode 7.1, Apple is now inviting developers to beginsubmitting their tvOS apps for App Store review.

Jack Dorsey Apologizes To Twitter Developers For Chasing Them Away, by Nick Statt, The Verge

Jack Dorsey wasted no time at Twitter's annual Flight developer conference this morning, telling the crowd that his company has effectively failed the developers and would like to say sorry. Dorsey says that Twitter has a lot of work to rebuild the relationship with the software community, which it's soiled by acting in unpredictable fashion, shutting off access to its platform, and ignoring the fact that developers made the service what it is today.


Apple Debuts Several New Apple Watch Ads Highlighting Siri, Third-Party Apps And More, by Chance Miller, 9to5Mac

The ads all highlight certain capabilities of Apple Watch and are short, 15 second TV spots.

Apple Reveals Solar Energy Programs To Clean Up Its Manufacturing Partners In China, by Jon Russell, TechCrunch

Timed in conjunction with CEO Tim Cook’s visit to the country, the U.S. company revealed that it will work with its manufacturing partners in China to help them “become more energy efficient and to use clean energy for their manufacturing operations.” Apple further explained that it is working with said suppliers, which include Foxconn, to add more than two gigawatts of ‘clean’ energy to those operations in the next few years.

Microsoft’s Rule-Breaking Vision Of A Future With Countless Devices, by Farhad Manjoo, New York Times

Under Satya Nadella, who became Microsoft’s chief executive early last year, Microsoft is embracing a fragmented vision of the future, in which no single device, or even a single category of devices, reigns supreme. The plan is a bit crazy and rife with internal and external tensions. That doesn’t mean it can’t work. The future is unpredictable, so why not try a bunch of good stuff and see what sticks?

How The Internet Has Changed Bullying, by Maria Konnikova, New Yorker

Before the Internet, bullying ended when you withdrew from whatever environment you were in. But now, the bullying dynamic is harder to contain and harder to ignore.


apple music just updated their privacy policy so they paused my music until I clicked over to iTunes and agreed to it

— Charlie Somerville (@charliesome) October 22, 2015


Thanks for reading.

Wed, Oct 21, 2015The Not-Designing-On-Trend Edition

Apple's Jony Ive And Vogue's Anna Wintour: Machines Can Build Beautiful Things, Christina Warren, Mashable

Ive said that the biggest challenge when designing the Apple Watch wasn't designing on trend, but that Apple "couldn't make a very broad range of products."

"What we designed was a system not a singular product," Ive told me. It's also why it was so important for the Apple Watch strap to be easily changeable. "I think we found that by being able to change the strap, not just change the color but the design — and the designs change profoundly — that we could start to introduce a new look in combination with different watch faces and user interfaces."

Where It All Came From: Steve Jobs And Japanese Aesthetics, by Matcha Tea

Steve Jobs visited Kyoto regularly, one of the central homes to both Japanese buddhism and tea culture, and he had a great love of Japanese art and cuisine. He enjoyed matcha during the tea ceremony and practiced buddhism, and his Apple products have shown design ideas which draw a great deal on Japanese expectations.


Using Content Reminders In iOS 9, by Josh Centers, TidBITS

Though easy to miss, Siri’s content reminders are one of the best things about iOS 9. You may not use them every day, but they can help you focus on what you’re doing, rather than what you have to do later.

CBS, NBC Round Out 'Big Four' Networks On Apple TV, Exclusive M2M Channel Also Debuts, by Neil Hughes, AppleInsider

The three new channel options arrive just days before the fourth-generation Apple TV, with a dedicated App Store, will be available to order.

Tableau Launches Free iPad Dataviz App, by Sharon Machlis, Computerworld

The new app, called Vizable, can handle data in formats such as CSV and Excel, and resulting visualizaitons can be shared via email, IM and social media. Interactive exploration includes things like adding columns, filtering, and rearranging.

What's Android Wear Really Like On iPhone?, by Britta O'Boyle, Pocket-Lint

The features are limited in comparison to what Android Wear offers Android users and what Apple Watch offers Apple users, but there are plenty of designs to choose from and iPhone users will get the basics from an Android Wear smartwatch.

FourChords Makes Learning Songs On Guitar Quick And Easy, by Jeff Byrnes, AppAdvice

Tweeting Multiple Pictures From iOS’ Photos App With Linky, by Federico Viticci, MacStories


Apple And Dropbox Say They’re Against A Key Cybersecurity Bill, Days Before A Crucial Vote, by Brian Fung, Washington Post

"We don't support the current CISA proposal," Apple said in a statement. "The trust of our customers means everything to us and we don't believe security should come at the expense of their privacy."

Apple Tells Judge It Can’t Unlock New iPhones, by Joe Palazzolo, Wall Street Journal

In a brief filed late Monday, the company said “in most cases now and in the future” it will be unable to assist the government in unlocking a password-protected iPhone. The brief was filed at the invitation of U.S. Magistrate Judge James Orenstein, who is considering a request from the Justice Department that he order Apple to help government investigators access a seized iPhone.

Tim Cook And The NSA Chief Almost Shared A Stage Last Night, by Marcus Wholsen, Wired

And in a way, Tim Cook, who took the stage after Rogers, agreed. The difference is that in Cook’s world, he serves the user. And when you’re serving the user, you don’t wait around for frameworks to be formulated, at least not the bureaucratic kind.

Despite objections from law enforcement, Apple a year agomade strong crypto the default for personal information stored on iPhones. And for that last night, he made no apology. Cook argued vehemently that he considered the choice between privacy and security a false dichotomy. “I think that’s a copout,” he told the Journal‘s editor-in-chief, Gerry Baker.[ ]

As U.S. Tech Companies Scramble, Group Sees Opportunity In Safe Harbor Decision, by Mark Scott, New York Times

A new safe harbor agreement between Europe and the United States could help ease some of that uncertainty, but negotiators have been unable to reach a new deal for two years.

And in a sign of increased tension, European privacy regulators say theywill start to enforce tougher oversight of data transfers, including issuing fines and banning overseas data transfers, by the end of January if a new agreement is not reached.

See You Tomorrow

Thanks for reading.

Tue, Oct 20, 2015The Over-And-Over Edition

Tim Cook Says New Apple TV Coming Next Week, Reveals 6.5m Paying Apple Music Subscribers, by Chance Miller, 9to5Mac

Cook announced that Apple Music has 6.5 million paying customers, a far cry from the 20 million Spotify has. Nevertheless, Cook said that people love the human curation aspect of the platform. For himself, Cook said that he was in a rut, listening to the same songs over and over before Apple Music was launched.

Follow-Up Passwords

When A Leak Isn’t A Leak, by AgileBits

Despite the security of AgileKeychain remaining intact, Dale reminded us that its time to move on. The OPVault format is really great in so many ways and we should start sharing it with as many users as possible.

We’ve already started making changes to use OPVault as the default format. In fact, the latest beta of 1Password for Windows does this already. Similar changes are coming to Mac and iOS soon, and we’re planning on using the new format in Android in the future. Once all of these things are complete, we will add an automatic migration for all 1Password users.


Responsibility, by Matt Gemmell

You enjoy the grace of an industry that’s horrible to women. You knew exactly what was going to happen, even before she started getting the rape-threat emails. You’re free to respond or to ignore, always, but you’re not entitled to turn a blind eye.

Mindfulness of mob reactions is the price of your follower count. Your status has privileges and consequences.

You can’t have one without the other.

Regret, by Ben Brooks

Arment has a chance to try to right a wrong here. I think this one is going to weigh on Arment if he doesn’t try to make it better.

Good people can and do say stupid and mean things. Arment did both. But good people always realize they fucked up at some point, and that’s when the regret sets in.

This time it is not the type of regret about being wrong over a blog — it is the type of regret knowing that you attacked someone undeserving of it, and that by saying nothing you passively condoned others piling on that person.

Giving & Receiving Criticism, by Sonya Ellen Mann

Even when a critique is offered unpleasantly, the only two productive reactions are 1) neutral curiosity — e.g. “Can you tell me more about why you say that?” — or 2) complete non-engagement. Far better to ignore someone whose critiques annoy or offend you than to blow up at them.


Apple Maps Adds Amtrak Routes In Northeastern U.S. And Transit Directions For Boston, by Juli Clover, MacRumors

Supported routes include the Northeast Regional, Acela Express, Keystone, Lake Shore Limited, Pennsylvanian, and Maple Leaf, many of which operate between cities in the Northeastern United States.

Paint The Stress Away With Color Therapy, Coloring For Adults, by Sandy Stachowiak|, AppAdvice

Create beautiful pictures from the many options and then share or save them. Images range from animals to mandalas to gothic and there are several color palettes to make your creations as unusual, pretty, or soothing as you like.

Living With: Microsoft Universal Foldable Keyboard, by William Gallagher, MacNN

When You Need Inspiration, A New App Can Spark It, by Sandy Stachowiak, AppAdvice


Hundreds Of Apps Banned From App Store For Accessing Users’ Personal Information, by Sarah Perez, TechCrunch

Hundreds of iOS applications have been pulled out of the App Store, following a report from analytics service SourceDNA, which uncovered a group of applications that were extracting users’ personally identifiable information, including their email associated with their Apple ID, device and peripheral serial numbers, and a list of apps installed on their phone. The applications in question had been using an SDK from a Chinese advertising company called Youmi which was accessing this information by way of private APIs, the report found.

Tesla, Apple, And The ‘Secretly Terrible’ Engineer Conundrum, by Jeff Whatcott, VentureBeat

The change that needs to happen is one where employers start recruiting people who have a solid foundation of skills and a desire to keep learning. This means changing your hiring practices from over-screening job applicants and no longer treating job interviews like cross-examining a hostile witness. Instead, focus on more foundational issues like cultural fit, intellectual clock speed, and background.


How Emojis Find Their Way To Phones, by Jonah Bromwich, New York Times

An obscure organization that standardizes the way punctuation marks and other text are represented by computer systems has in recent years found itself at the forefront of mobile pop culture, with its power to create new emojis.

A new batch is under review, a process that takes months. But don’t call the pictorial system a language, unless you want an argument from Mark Davis, 63, a co-founder and the president of the Unicode Consortium, the group that serves as the midwife to new emojis.

Something Besides MediaCorp Please

Will I be able to find out what apps are available for Apple TV in Singapore, without having to buy an Apple TV just to visit the Apple TV App Store?


Thanks for reading.

Mon, Oct 19, 2015The Captured-By-Mistake Edition

Apple 'Live Photos' Has A Big Privacy Issue -- Should iPhone 6s And 6s Plus Users Worry?, by Brian Fagioli, BetaNews

I decided to go back and check some of my other Live Photos to see if I captured anything by mistake. Sure enough, there was something embarrassing in a picture of my dog. I quickly snapped a photo of her sleeping because she looked so cute. The problem? I had just gotten out of the shower and was wearing nothing more than a towel. Besides capturing my dog, Live Photo captured me in the mirror in an undressed state when I moved my arm after.

1Password Leaks Your Data, by Dale Meyers

After this my confidence has been shaken. However, I will continue to use 1Password. Sure, there are problems with metadata. I’ll now have to switch to the OPVault format and lose the 1PasswordAnywhere functionality. Yes, they didn’t broadcast the downsides of using the older vault format and they make it difficult to use the new one by default. However, they didn’t ever deny this. They clearly document their keychain formats to the extent that anyone can go and write something which can decrypt it. I didn’t read the documentation when I signed up. I admittedly shouldn’t have to, but it’s their. AgileBits dropped the ball on metadata security, but I have no worries at all that my passwords are still safe.


Harry Potter And The iBooks Author, by Michael E. Cohen, TidBITS

While this news might not be especially interesting to readers who already have copies of the books in paper or in the digital editions previously released by Pottermore, Rowling’s digital entertainment and ecommerce company, it does have some significance for those with a general interest in digital book publishing tools. Why? Because of the books’ iBooks Author connection.

Publishers Straddle The Apple-Google, App-Web Divide, by Katie Benner and Conor Dougherty, New York Times

The Internet was supposed to be a place where billions of potential users could be reached in one place, simply and inexpensively. But as Applefocuses on apps and Google pushes the mobile web, businesses are grappling with a fragmenting online world.


Studiometry 12 Adds A Weekly Calendar, Introduces Studiometry Cloud, by Joseph Keller, iMore

Oranged Software, the developers behinded Mac project management software Studiometry, has released Studiometry 12, a major update that makes organizing and analyzing your business data easier than ever. With this release, Oranged also introduces Studiometry Touch for iPhone and iPad, along with Studiometry Cloud, a new syncing service.

Waze iOS App Gets Major Design Revamp For Easier Navigation, Reporting And Sharing, by Ben Lovejoy, 9to5Mac


How Can We Achieve Age Diversity In Silicon Valley?, by Steven Levy, Medium

In my view, age information should be included in those diversity reports, to underline the need for change— and, even more important, those in charge of company cultures should view age diversity as a plus.

Right now, that’s not happening.

CodeSwitch For Mac OS X Automatically Converts Objective-C Code To Swift, by MacTech

Of Mouses And Me

I didn't mind the original iMac "hockey-puck" mouse. In fact, because I can feel that little cable with my fingers, I didn't have any problems orientating the mouse right-side up.


Thanks for reading.

Sun, Oct 18, 2015The Anti-Reflective Edition

Apple Launches Quality Program For MacBook Pro Anti-Reflective Coating Issues, by Joe Rossignol, MacRumors

Apple has issued an internal notice about a new Quality Program that addresses anti-reflective coating issues on MacBook and MacBook Pro models with Retina displays. These issues include the anti-reflective coating on displays wearing off or delaminating under certain circumstances.

According to MacRumors, Apple will be contacting affected customers.

So Here's The Thing, by Anil Dash, Medium

Now, I get the argument that says this doesn’t matter. The new mouse charges so fast that you’d only been staring at this lunacy for a minute or two before your mouse was charged. But Apple’s entire design brand is based on paying attention to details that logically don’t really matter.

"You got to make the back of the fence that nobody will see just as good looking as the front of the fence. Even though nobody will see it, you will know, and that will show that you're dedicated to making something perfect."

"The back of our computer looks better than the front of their computers."

Would You Tell Apple When You've Had Sex?, by Ashley Gold, BBC

Megan King, who lives in New York City, had used Clue - one of the other reproductive health trackers - for about a year before iOS9 was released.

Such apps are a good way to track menstrual cycle and fertility, she said.


Troubleshoot And Manage High Battery Usage In iOS 9, by Topher Kessler, MacIssues


A Few Words (And An Incredibly Short Run) With Apple’s Fitness Guru Jay Blahnik (Q&A), by Dawn Chmielewski, Re/code

We found that there has been a consistent message back from consumers, saying, “I’m really motivated to close my rings every night.” Whether they’re beginners or elite athletes, we’re hearing the same stories all over, which is: “It’s 9 p.m., my ring’s not quite closed, I’ll take my dog out for one more walk around the block.”

'Desperate': What Agencies Think Of PC Makers' New Ad Campaign, by Shareen Pathak, Digiday

David Eastman, managing partner at MCD Partners said that the partnership between the PC makers feels “desperate.” And possibly even, “nostalgic” — a yearning for days gone by that probably won’t come back. “Campaigns in which multiple competitive brands with common vested interests come together rarely succeed,” said Eastman.

Ted Florea, who heads strategy at PNYC, said that for him, suggested PC makers are admitting defeat in a way, finally accepting a binary worldview that Apple itself put out a decade ago with its “Mac vs. PC” ads. Worse, the tagline itself is misguided in that asking “PC Does What?” feels almost tone deaf. “Not knowing what a PC does is a failure of all the players involved to stay relevant,” he said.

Waiting For The Real Mouse

Apple must be working hard to re-do the Magic Mouse 2 so that the mouse will continue to work with the lightning cable plugged in, right?


Thanks for reading.

Sat, Oct 17, 2015The Water-Ripples Edition

Flagship Apple Stores Get Touch-Sensitive Tables To Promote iPhone 6s 3D Touch, by Mike Beasley, 9to5Mac

The table displays a water animation that responds to the 3D Touch sensors on the iPhone demos. When a user force presses the wallpaper to trigger the fish animation, the “water” beneath the phone ripples.



Notes On, by Stephen Hackett, 512 Pixels

The sync is great, which is also important, but I wouldn't mind Apple modernizing the UI on both iOS and OS X, and giving users more control over things like note sorting and font sizes.

There's always next year, I suppose, but for now, Notes is enough for me.

Kill The Password? Yahoo Tries It And It Works, by Glenn Fleishman, Macworld

Yahoo wants to make it easier for its users to have the benefits of authorized logins while reducing the utility of stolen passwords to bad actors, and it chose a method that’s better than passwords in nearly all circumstances.


Apple Ordered To Pay $234 Million To University For Infringing Patent, by Andrew Chung, Reuters

On Thursday, U.S. District Judge William Conley, who is presiding over the case, ruled that Apple had not willfully infringed WARF's patent, eliminating a chance to triple the damages in the case.

Appeals Court Backs Google In Copyright Lawsuit Over Book Scanning, by Jacob Gershman, Wall Street Journal

A unanimous three-judge panel of the Second U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals concluded that Google’s scanning millions of copyrighted books wasn’t infringement because what the company makes viewable online is so limited.


Have a good weekend. And thanks for visiting MyAppleMenu.

Fri, Oct 16, 2015The Documents-From-2008 Edition

Apple Updates iWork Mac And iOS Apps With Support For OS X El Capitan And iOS 9, by Juli Clover, MacRumors

Keynote and Pages have gained support for opening presentations and documents from 2006 and 2008 versions of the software, while Numbers is now able to open Numbers '08 spreadsheets. [...] Apple has also updated its iWork apps for iOS, notably adding split-screen multitasking support on the iPad and support for 3D Touch on the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus.

Thanks To Microsoft, iPhone 6s Plus Is Now A Great Enterprise Smartphone, by Matthew Miller, ZDNet

If Microsoft did not provide all of these tools for iOS, then I could not use the Apple iPhone 6s Plus as my primary smartphone. I would probably be using a Windows Phone instead, but am thankful that Microsoft has developed these applications since the iPhone is a better smartphone than current Microsoft offerings and I now get the best of both worlds.


Yahoo Mail Eliminates Passwords As Part Of A Major Redesign, by Casey Newton, The Verge

Seven months after replacing traditional passwords with single-use SMS codes, Yahoo is taking the next step toward blowing up the password altogether. The company today announced Yahoo Account Key, which links your account to a mobile device and then asks you to approve new logins through push notifications.

SuperSync Comes In Handy For Managing iTunes On Multiple Macs, by Dennis Sellers, Apple World Today

Pixelmator For Mac Gets El Capitan Optimizations, Metal-Based Photos Extension, by Roger Fingas, AppleInsider

Pandora Joins Shortlist Of iPhone Apps Ready For Apple's CarPlay, by Roger Fingas, AppleInsider

Ask The iTunes Guy: Genius Playlists, iTunes Match And CDs, Identifying Purchased Content, by Kirk McElhearn, Macworld

Managing your music is supposed to be easier in iTunes, but readers have lots of questions about this. In this installment of Ask the iTunes Guy, I help a reader create a Genius playlist based on a song in iTunes 12.3. I also take a look at how Apple uses Various Artists for artists in a compilation. And then I take a look at two questions relating to ripping (or not ripping) CDs.

Why Bookmark Logo Icons Disappear In Safari, by Glenn Fleishman, Macworld

"When I logged in at the CPH [Copenhagen, Denmark] airport for their free Wi-Fi, many of my Safari icons were changed to the airport logo. How do I change them back?"


Default Alive Or Default Dead?, by Paul Graham

The reason I want to know first whether a startup is default alive or default dead is that the rest of the conversation depends on the answer. If the company is default alive, we can talk about ambitious new things they could do. If it's default dead, we probably need to talk about how to save it. We know the current trajectory ends badly. How can they get off that trajectory?


Apple Shares New iPhone 6s Ad Focused On 3D Touch, by Juli Clover, MacRumors

Cops Don’t Need A Crypto Backdoor To Get Into Your iPhone, by Andy Greenberg, Wired

As a reminder that the crypto backdoor debate isn’t the beginning and end of digital privacy, here are a few of the de-facto backdoors that still leave private data open to any law enforcement that seize a locked, encrypted iPhone.

iCloud, iTunes, Siri, TouchID.

Apple Is Learning An Expensive Lesson About Universities, by Brian Fung, Washington Post

Just because universities spin the patent licensing question by claiming it's part of their mission doesn't make it untrue. There are clear arguments for why WARF is not trolling or engaged in the kind of abusive litigation that the tech sector has implored Congress to act upon. WARF is a real thing, in the real world, and not an entity that merely exists on paper. Even though it doesn't make anything itself, the money WARF donates to UW-Madison indirectly produces new graduates, new facilities and sometimes directly to new breakthroughs in science, research and development. And importantly, in the case against Apple, it's not pushing for maximum damages.

But the strongest piece of evidence is that, according to Reuters, Apple tried and failed to convince the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to invalidate WARF's patent. Here's why that matters.

Modern Life Is Rubbish? Sleep Is Just The Same As Ever, Say Scientists, by Ian Sample, The Guardian

But according to new research, modern life has done nothing to rob us of sleep, despite the invention of the electric lightbulb, the TV, the internet, smartphones and social media.

Scientists who studied three hunter-gatherer and hunter-horticulturalist societies in Africa and Bolivia found that they stayed up for hours after sunset and got no more sleep than people in the industrialised world. None had access to electricity and their only source of light after dark was a campfire.

My Menu Bar

Microsoft has been transiting Windows from using menu bars to ribbons. Mac OS X now allows you to auto-hide the menu bar. And, obviously, there are no menu bars on iOS, watchOS, tvOS, and all the different flavors of Androids.

The whole WIMP interface popularized by the Macintosh may be losing the M part, it seems.


Thanks for reading.

Thu, Oct 15, 2015The Unconventional-Destination Edition

Apple’s Biggest Fan Has Died, by Michael S. Rosenwald, Washington Post

I met Allen four years ago when he drove from his home in Berkeley, Calif., to Tysons Corner Mall in Virginia. It was an unconventional cross-country destination but understandable given the occasion: The 10th anniversary of Apple’s first store.

By then he had turned his passion for Apple stores, which now number 450, into a widely read blog about Apple’s retail operation called ifo Apple Store. It was followed by closely tech bloggers, Wall Street analysts and Apple store employees, who greeted him at the Tysons Corner store with awe.

Data Vs Privacy

The Catch-22 That Could Hurt Apple Down The Road, by Hayley Tsukayama, Washington Post

The focus on privacy puts some onus on consumers to do more work to make tech services work better. And honestly speaking, consumers have every right to ask: Who has the time for that? Whether through privacy policy fatigue or a genuine preference for convenience over privacy, the answer for many may be, "Not me."

Research Kit

First ResearchKit App For Apple Watch Will Track Seizures In Real Time, by Caitlin McGarry, Macworld

Apple made it really easy for doctors to study patients with the open-sourced ResearchKit framework, which lets researchers create health apps for the iPhone. Now researchers are taking advantage of the Apple Watch’s sensors to get even more data, starting with Johns Hopkins’s new Watch app for epilepsy patients.

Apple Announces New ResearchKit Projects Studying Autism, Epilepsy And Melanoma, by Benjamin Mayo, 9to5Mac


20 Minutes With The New Apple Magic Keyboard, by David Sparks, MacSparky

Overall, the new keyboard seems an improvement in just about every way. I’m not sure if it’s worth replacing my existing keyboard but because I am weak, I will probably at some point in the future do so anyway. Regardless, going forward, the new Apple Magic Keyboard is better than the old one.

Business Card Shop 7 For Mac OS X Has Been Redesigned, Gets Maps Feature, by MacTech

Turn Your Live Photos Into GIFs With New Live GIF App, by Cam Bunton, 9to5Mac

Apple's Official @AppleMusicHelp Twitter Account Provides Direct Music Support To Customers, by Joseph Keller, iMore


The Elephant In The Room, by Smantha Bielefeld

As one developer put it to me, it seems a bit tone deaf for him to even be trying to relate himself to the other individuals trying to create a revenue stream on the App Store. The typical programmer doesn't have a popular website with ad placements, or a successful podcast that earns them tens, and tens of thousands of dollars a year. I'm not knocking his success, he has put effort into his line of work, and has built his own life. He can afford to gamble the potential for Overcast to provide him income. But it most certainly is not the norm.

Her Code Got Humans On The Moon—And Invented Software Itself, by Robert McMillan, Wired

Margaret Hamilton wasn't supposed to invent the modern concept of software and land men on the moon. It was 1960, not a time when women were encouraged to seek out high-powered technical work. Hamilton, a 24-year-old with an undergrad degree in mathematics, had gotten a job as a programmer at MIT, and the plan was for her to support her husband through his three-year stint at Harvard Law. After that, it would be her turn—she wanted a graduate degree in math.

But the Apollo space program came along. And Hamilton stayed in the lab to lead an epic feat of engineering that would help change the future of what was humanly—and digitally—possible.


Apple Aiming To Increase Music Library Matching Limit To 100,000 Tracks 'Before The End Of The Year', by Eric Slivka, MacRumors

[Eddie Cue] tells us Apple is "definitely working on it" and that he expects it will be released "before the end of the year."

CBS's Moonves Says Content Deal With Apple TV Is Likely, by Scott Moritz, Bloomberg

“Apple is having conversations with everyone about doing their own streaming services,” Moonves said in an interview Wednesday on Bloomberg TV. “We have had those conversations, as have the other networks. Do I think something will happen? Probably, but I do not know when.”

Raiders Of The Lost Web, by Adrienne Lafrance, THe Atlantic

If a Pulitzer-finalist 34-part series of investigative journalism can vanish from the web, anything can.

Mighty Magic Mouse

I do wish the new Magic Mouse 2 can also function as a wired non-Bluetooth mouse.


Thanks for reading.

Wed, Oct 14, 2015The Radio-Attack Edition

Hackers Can Silently Control Siri From 16 Feet Away, by Andy Greenberg, Wired

A pair of researchers at ANSSI, a French government agency devoted to information security, have shown that they can use radio waves to silently trigger voice commands on any Android phone or iPhone that has Google Now or Siri enabled, if it also has a pair of headphones with a microphone plugged into its jack. Their clever hack uses those headphones’ cord as an antenna, exploiting its wire to convert surreptitious electromagnetic waves into electrical signals that appear to the phone’s operating system to be audio coming from the user’s microphone. Without speaking a word, a hacker could use that radio attack to tell Siri or Google Now to make calls and send texts, dial the hacker’s number to turn the phone into an eavesdropping device, send the phone’s browser to a malware site, or send spam and phishing messages via email, Facebook, or Twitter.

If You’re Not Paranoid, You’re Crazy, by Walter Kirn, The Atlantic

I knew we’d bought walnuts at the store that week, and I wanted to add some to my oatmeal. I called to my wife and asked her where she’d put them. She was washing her face in the bathroom, running the faucet, and must not have heard me—she didn’t answer. I found the bag of nuts without her help and stirred a handful into my bowl. My phone was charging on the counter. Bored, I picked it up to check the app that wirelessly grabs data from the fitness band I’d started wearing a month earlier. I saw that I’d slept for almost eight hours the night before but had gotten a mere two hours of “deep sleep.” I saw that I’d reached exactly 30 percent of my day’s goal of 13,000 steps. And then I noticed a message in a small window reserved for miscellaneous health tips. “Walnuts,” it read. It told me to eat more walnuts.

It was probably a coincidence, a fluke. Still, it caused me to glance down at my wristband and then at my phone, a brand-new model with many unknown, untested capabilities. Had my phone picked up my words through its mic and somehow relayed them to my wristband, which then signaled the app?

For The Kids

How Autism Apps Help Kids On The Spectrum, by Dina Roth Port, MedicalXpress

While technology has always held promise as a therapeutic tool, the customization and personalization of the latest apps are helping children with autism learn to communicate, socialize and master routines in new ways.

App Uses Kids’ Obsession With Phones To Teach Them Coding, by Liz Stinson, Wired

For many youngsters, a smartphone is like magic. “I realized that it’s hard to deconstruct how much technology is hidden inside the supercomputers we all have in our hands,” Gutierrez says. And that’s a problem. The way Gutierrez’s sees it, it’s not enough to know how to play that race car game; kids should understand how the gyroscope in the phone makes playing that game possible. Gutierrez wanted to turn his smartphone inside out and expose its guts. So he created an app.


NetNewsWire Picks Up iPad Support, Adds New Gestures And Sharing Options, by Joseph Keller, iMore

While version 4.0.1 might sound like a minor update for NetNewsWire for iPhone, it brings with it a fairly major new feature. NetNewsWire, the venerable RSS application that made its return to both iOS and Mac last month, is now a universal application, and is available for iPad, and includes support for iOS 9's iPad multitasking.

Mosband Reminds You To Do Those Thoughtful Little Things, by Sandy Stachowiak, AppAdvice

A new app seeks to help remind you to do something nice for your wife, girlfriend, or partner on a regular basis and provides suggestions. It’s called Mosband and derives its name from “model husband.”

Turns Out: Apple Offers Prorated AppleCare Refunds, by Glenn Fleishman, Macworld

I had no idea that the extended-warranty plans, AppleCare and AppleCare+, could be refunded on a pro-rata basis for the unused remaining portion, despite ostensibly being a veteran reporter of things Apple. This wouldn’t change any actions I’ve taken nor my recommendations. But it does shift some of the discussion around iPhone installment plans, which I just wrote about, describing swapping my phone from AT&T to the Apple iPhone Upgrade plan.


Pragmatic App Pricing, by Marco Arment

With those challenges on the horizon, this is the worst time for the indie-podcast world to put up any unnecessary barriers. I don’t know if Overcast stands a chance of preventing the Facebookization of podcasting, but I know I’m increasing the odds if my app is free without restrictions. As long as I can make money some other way, I’m fine.

The Web Authentication Arms Race – A Tale Of Two Security Experts, by SLaks.Blog

Web authentication systems have evolved over the past ten years to counter a growing variety of threats. This post will present a fictional arms race between a web application developer and an attacker, showing how different threats can be countered with the latest security technologies.


The Background Data And Battery Usage Of Facebook’s iOS App, by Federico Viticci, MacStories

I wonder if Apple should consider additional battery controls to take action against shady practices like invisible background audio. What Facebook is doing shows a deep lack of respect for iOS users. I continue to recommend using Safari instead.

Apple Uses Good Design To Marginalize Industries, by Above Avalon

As people decipher the driving factors behind what makes a product like the iPod, iPhone, and iPad so successful, it is crucial to recognize how a product's design has the potential not just to alter industries, but go so far as to marginalize them.

Still Buggy

Real story: This morning, just before I left for work, I wanted to download an album from Apple Music onto my iPhone for offline listening. Totally spur of the moment thing. And it took me only three tries and 20 minutes. (The first two times, if you must know, the album did not appear at all in the "My Music" tab. Even though I watched with my own two eyes the entire song-by-song downloading progress in the Downloads sheet.)


Thanks for reading.

Tue, Oct 13, 2015The 4K-Retina-iMac Edition

The Inside Story Of Apple’s New iMacs, by Steven Levy, Medium

The suspect mouse sound stirred consternation and late nights in the maze of workspaces located in a nondescript office building a few miles away from Apple’s Infinite Loop headquarters. This is the Input Design Lab, though employees refer to the venue as Vallco Parkway, the street where it’s sited. Behind doors that outsiders rarely venture past are an array of exotic machines, many custom-tuned, that measure and test the latest Apple wares. These were put to use to fix the problem.

The culprit appeared to be the little polycarbonate runners on the bottom of the mouse. “We changed the foot architecture,” says Bergeron, Apple’s VP for Ecosystem Products and Technologies. (Translation: you pound on her keyboards.) “And it changed the friction characteristics of the sound.”

“When we did the previous mouse we spent so much time dialing those feet, the material, the geometry, everything, so that it sounds good and feels good when you move it on the table,” says Ternus, whose title is VP for Mac, iPad, Ecosystem and Audio Engineering. “But then you change the mass of the product and you change the resonant frequency of the product and all of a sudden the feet that we loved weren’t great anymore. They weren’t what we wanted.”

Apple Launches New Retina 4K 21.5-Inch iMac, All 27-Inch iMacs Now Feature Retina 5K Displays, by Benjamin Mayo, 9to5Mac

The 4K Retina iMac features a 4096 x 2304 resolution display, totalling over 9 million pixels. The displays feature a P3 color gamut, which features 25 % large color space for more detailed and more life-like image reproduction. Internally, the 4K iMac features a fifth-generation Intel Core processor with updated Intel Iris Pro graphics, priced from $1499.

Apple Goes all-Retina For Its 27-Inch Skylake iMac Refresh, by Andrew Cunningham, Ars Technica

This year, the entire lineup is getting a refresh—not only is there a new 4K model of the 21.5-inch iMac, but all of the 27-inch non-Retina iMacs are being replaced by 5K Retina models. The 27-inch models are also getting some nice internal upgrades, including quad-core Intel Skylake CPUs, new dedicated AMD Radeon GPUs, and faster PCI Express SSDs and Fusion Drive configurations.

iMac With 4K Retina Display Review: A High-Resolution Desktop Mac For The Masses, by Jason Snell, Macworld

It offers a lot of screen space but isn’t awkward to maneuver around a table top. The prices on the three models are more reasonable though you’ll want to upgrade the hard drive to a Fusion Drive or pure flash storage if it fits within your budget.

Same Design, New Insides, Better Screen: 21.5-Inch 4K Retina iMac Reviewed, by Andrew Cunningham, Ars Technica

The best thing about the 4K iMac is that you don't have to use a gigantic 27-inch model if you want to get a Retina display. There are plenty of people who prefer the larger screen, but for those who find it intimidating or just too big for their workspace, the 4K model is here and it's waiting with open arms. The more-than-doubled resolution and Retina scaling modes give it more multitasking potential than the non-Retina iMacs too.

But screen size aside, the 21.5-inch iMacs are inferior to the new 27-inch models in many ways. It's typical for the smaller iMacs to have smaller build-to-order storage options and weaker GPUs, but in this case Apple has entirely removed dedicated GPUs from the equation and isn't offering 1TB SSD upgrades or 3TB Fusion Drive upgrades (though this may be due to space limitations inside the smaller case). Even worse, Intel's frustrating release calendar means that the 21.5-inch models are now a full CPU architecture refresh behind the 27-inch models, and the 4K model won't even have the option of upgrading to Skylake until early in 2016.

Then there are the frustrating choices Apple has made across the lineup: No Thunderbolt 3 or USB Type-C even though those technologies are apparently ready to go, and no standard Fusion Drive or SSD in any but the top-end 27-inch iMacs.

More Magic

Apple Launches Larger Magic Trackpad 2 With Force Touch, Magic Mouse 2 & Magic Keyboard, by Mark Gurman, 9to5Mac

The new keyboard and trackpad have an updated design to accommodate improved keys on the keyboard and Force Touch on the trackpad, while the mouse has been redesigned internally. All three devices work on rechargeable lithium-ion batteries that juice up via a standard USB Lightning cable:

Magic Keyboard, Magic Mouse 2, And Magic Trackpad 2 FAQ: Everything You Need To Know, by Rene Ritchie, iMore

Apple Magic Keyboard Review, by Jason Snell, Six Colors

The Magic Keyboard’s key travel is about 1mm, less than that on the old Apple keyboards. But typing on it feels much better than the MacBook’s keyboard did. It’s hard to explain typing feel in words, and people can have dramatically different tastes when it comes to keyboards. In general, I’d say I like it. It may well be better than the older model, but it’s definitely different. There’s less travel, but more key stability.

Apple Magic Trackpad 2 Review, by Jason Snell, Six Colors

I like that it’s got more surface, that it brings Force Touch to the desktop for the first time, and that it’s rechargeable (and supports the same plug-to-pair feature as the Magic Mouse 2 and the Magic Keyboard, so you don’t have to fiddle with Bluetooth settings in order to pair it with your Mac). It brings all the goodness of Apple’s laptop trackpads to the desktop. I’d never go back to a mouse, or a trackball, ever again.

Mini-Review: Apple’s New Magic Keyboard, Magic Mouse 2, And Magic Trackpad 2, by Andrew Cunningham, Ars Technica

Accessories are great additions to the new iMacs, but pricey standalone upgrades.


Apple E-Book Antitrust Monitoring May End After Rocky Course,by Pamela A Maclean, Bloomberg

The government on Monday recommended that the monitoring not be extended. In a letter to the Manhattan federal judge who found in 2013 that Apple illegally conspired with publishers to set e-book prices, the U.S. said Apple has “now implemented meaningful antitrust policies, procedures, and training programs that were obviously lacking at the time Apple participated in and facilitated the horizontal price-fixing conspiracy found by this court.”

The Justice Department said Apple “never embraced a cooperative working relationship with the monitor.” Apple acknowledged its relationship with the monitor was “rocky at times,” but disagreed that it wasn’t willing to cooperate.

Removing Content

Apple Draws Cloudy Line On Use Of Root Certs In Mobile Apps, by Jeremy Kirk, IDG News Service

Yoon said his company fully disclosed to users how it was blocking ads within a few SSL/TLS protected services and did not retain any traffic from users' devices. But he acknowledged Apple's public justification for removing Choice.

"To be fair, to get rid of the root cert is safer, but we didn't think we were being unsafe," Yoon said.

Apple News Censorship Reminds Us How Fleeting Digital Content Is, by Nathaniel Mott, GigaOM

When companies demonstrate their willingness to pull those digital products, either because they’re afraid of losing access to their second-most valuable market or because the item shouldn’t have been listed in its marketplace to begin with, those fears rise to the forefront. Apple just reminded the world how fleeting digital content can be, especially when it’s distributed via third parties.


Samsung Vs. TSMC: Comparing The Battery Life Of Two Apple A9s, by Andrew Cunningham, Ars Technica

So there are definitely circumstances under which the TSMC phone will last longer than the Samsung phone, but it's not a universal problem. A Samsung chip that's mostly idling or even one under modest CPU and GPU load, though, is going to behave in just about the same way as a TSMC chip. And the kinds of CPU-intensive work that the Samsung chip seems to struggle with just aren't that common on smartphones. Most of the time, iPhone 6S battery life should be similar no matter which chip your phone is using.

This App Is Building A Giant Network For Free Messaging, by Liz Stinson, Wired

The big idea is that instead of relying on a centralized ISP or telecom company to provide service, people are able to build their own decentralized network that can grow as large as there are people who have the app downloaded. In the case of FireChat, these messages end up in either a massive group chat or can be encrypted and delivered as a private message by hopping from phone to phone until it reaches its intended recipient.

How To Get Text Messages For Two-Factor Authentication Without A Phone Number, by Glenn Fleishman, Macworld


Apple Supporting Refugee Crisis Aid Efforts With Exclusive Imagine Dragons Single, All Proceeds Go To Charity, by Benjamin Mayo, 9to5Mac

To help with the international refugee crisis happening right now, Apple and the band Imagine Dragons have collaborated on an exclusive charity single, called “I Was Me”. All proceeds of the song sales go to the UN Refugee Agency to support relief efforts. In addition, SAP will be donating an additional 10 cents per download for the first 5 million iTunes downloads. The Imagine Dragons track is exclusive to iTunes and available worldwide.

Mobile Is Not A Neutral Platform, by Benedict Evans

The crucial change is that Netscape or Internet Explorer did not shape which websites you visited (though toolbars tried to) and they didn't do things that changed how user acquisition or retention worked online. Apple and Google do that all the time, both consciously and unconsciously - it's inherent in what an actual operation system means. Some of this is simple evolution, and often collaborative - the emergence of deep links is a good example of this. But some of it isn't.

New Apple Watch Ads: A Midcourse Correction, by Ken Segall's Observatory

The simple truth is, the first Watch campaign was soft and fuzzy — long on emotion and short on lust. Way too many people reacted to those spots by saying “I still don’t get why I’d want one.”

The new campaign is not only 100x more clear—it actually gives the Watch a personality.

All The Reasons You (Probably) Won’t Win Money Playing Daily Fantasy Sports, by Drew Harwell, Washington Post

First, let's get a few basics out of the way: Daily-fantasy sports is betting, full stop. If bettors don't want to lose money, there are plenty of places they can keep it nice and cozy somewhere else. Lots of people win, and lots of people lose but still have fun anyway.

But the game's structure and fairness isn't just a cause of concern for new players. It also presents a potential minefield for the billion-dollar sites' corporate leaders and investors, whose success depends on persuading players to keep coming back to play.


I use a Mac laptop. With a built-in trackpad. So, what excuse can I make to myself to buy the new Magic Trackpad, except to force touch everything?


I don't like Bluetooth. In fact (and this really happened), this morning, my bluetooth earphone lost the pairing with my iPhone again. And it seems that the only way to fix this problem is to re-pair them from scratch.

So, I do wish the new magic keyboard, mouse, and trackpad will work as wired peripherals instead of over bluetooth when it is plugged in to USB.

Oh well.


Thanks for reading.

Mon, Oct 12, 2015The Unduly-Burdensome Edition

With Court Order, Federal Judge Seeks To Fuel Debate About Data Encryption, by Ellen Nakashima, Washington Post

Magistrate Judge James Orenstein of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York released an order Friday that suggests he would not issue a ­government-sought order to compel the tech giant Apple to unlock a customer’s smartphone.

But before he can rule, the judge said, he wants Apple to explain whether the government’s request would be “unduly burdensome.”


The Longest Shortest Time Brings Listeners’ Voices Into Its Podcast With A Dedicated App, by Laura Hazard Owen, Nieman Lab

Frank, the host of the parenting podcast The Longest Shortest Time, wanted from the show’s beginning to reach listeners when they need help the most. The podcast is released every other week at 3:00 a.m., that depressing in-between parenting hour when the morning is both too close and still very far away. And The Longest Shortest Time has an iPhone app that draws listeners into the podcast by letting them record responses to questions from directly within the app. Those responses are then woven into future episodes of the show.

Clever App Turns Everyone Into A Roving Weather Reporter, by Tim Moynihan, Wired

With a free app for iOS, Sunshine wants to be the gold standard for weather accuracy. It hopes to achieve this ambitious goal by using altogether different meteorological instruments: People, iPhones, algorithms, and the draw of community and gamification. The app needs your location to work correctly, but the tradeoff is receiving hyper-local weather reports—Sunshine calls them “Nowcasts”—and becoming part of the data-aggregation process.

Addicted To Case… Why I Love Mophie Juice Packs, by Simon Royal, Low End Mac

What Causes The Java Installation Dialog To Appear In OS X?, by Glenn Fleishman, Macworld


I Wore An Apple Watch To This Haunted Amusement Park To See If It’s Scary, by Sebastian Anthony, Ars Technica

I had been invited to the opening night of Thorpe Park's Fright Nights, the UK's premier haunted amusement park. Finally I could use my Apple Watch not to track my fitness, but to see if plummeting "beyond vertically" on the Saw roller coaster into a pitch-black hole on a dark and moonless night with the sound of demented clowns in the distance would actually raise my heart rate.

From SimCity To, Well, SimCity: The History Of City-Building Games, by Richard Moss, Ars Technica

Cities are everywhere. Billions of us live in them, and many of us think we could do a better job than the planners. But for the past 26 years dating back to the original SimCity, we've mostly been proving that idea false.

We've traveled through time and space to build on alien worlds, in ancient civilizations, and in parallel universes—laying down roads, zoning land, playing god, and cheating our way to success in a vain attempt to construct a virtual utopia. And now, here, I'm going to take you on a whirlwind tour through the history of the city-building genre—from its antecedents to the hot new thing.

Think The Floppy Disk Is Dead? Think Again! Here’s Why It Still Stands Between Us And A Nuclear Apocalypse, by Brad Jones, Digital Trends

“There are people who love floppy disks,” he tells me, giving the example of a court reporter who uses the format for sheer convenience and force of habit. “There’s a large embroidery company that does 500 jobs a day,” he goes on. “They could do that on a hard drive — except their machinery doesn’t work with a hard drive.”

Therein lies the biggest reason that floppy disks are still in demand in some corners of industry. “In the 1990s, hundreds of thousands of industrial machines were built around floppy disks, which were high-tech of the time,” he tells me. “They were built to last fifty years.”

Parting Words

Today marks the first time I've used the new Safari mute-sounds-in-an-unknown-tab feature. Guess which is the offending site? Hint: the ex-magazine that does not have a CamelCase name.


Thanks for reading.

Sun, Oct 11, 2015The Sensitive-Articles Edition

Apple Is Said To Deactivate Its News App In China, by Paul Mozur and Katie Benner, New York Times

Beijing generally insists that companies are responsible for censoring sensitive content inside China. In Apple’s case, that would mean it would probably have to develop a censorship system — most Chinese companies use a combination of automated software and employees — to eliminate sensitive articles from feeds.

For now, Apple seems to be avoiding the problem by completely disabling the service for users in China.


Piano App Gets Me Playing, by Nicola Davis, The Guardian

The new Skoove app promises to ‘make your musical dreams come true’. It’s good, but doesn’t hit all the right notes for a learner.

Not Sure What To Read? These Apps Open Up Poetry’s Riches, by Sara Keating, The Irish Times

When Faber & Faber announced its publication of TS Eliot’s narrative poem The Waste Land in a sumptuous digital edition, in 2011, it was a landmark in literary publishing and evolving digital formats. It allowed the integration of the copious annotations that most contemporary readers need to unlock its codes with minimal disruption to their reading experience. Scholarly perspectives, audio recordings (including a reading by Eliot himself), manuscripts: it offered the entire package necessary to penetrate the writer’s best-known work and brought a new readership to a difficult modernist work.

Boston Children's Hospital Rolled Out Their New Hep-C Tracker Program And iApp That Relies On ResearchKit Exclusively, by Patently Apple


Government Will No Longer Seek Encrypted User Data, by Nicole Perlroth and David E. Sanger, New York Times

The Obama administration has backed down in its bitter dispute with Silicon Valley over the encryption of data on iPhones and other digital devices, concluding that it is not possible to give US law enforcement and intelligence agencies access to that information without creating an opening that China, Russia, cybercriminals, and terrorists could also exploit.

With its decision, which angered the FBI and other law enforcement agencies, the administration essentially agreed with Apple, Google, Microsoft, and a group of the nation’s top cryptographers and computer scientists.

The Lost Art Of Getting Lost, by Stephen Smith, BBC

Discovery used to mean going out and coming across stuff - now it seems to mean turning inwards and gazing at screens. We've become reliant on machines to help us get around, so much so that it's changing the way we behave, particularly among younger people who have no experience of a time before GPS.

We're raising an entire generation of men who will never know what it is to refuse to ask for directions.

Two Browsers Family

Like many, I use Safari as my default browser, and Google Chrome as my web browser with Flash.

And starting now, I am also using Google Chrome as my web browser for web sites that doesn't work with Ad Blockers turned on.


Thanks for reading.

Sat, Oct 10, 2015The Quietly-Modified Edition

Apple Adds Bluetooth 4.2 To iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus And iPad Air 2, by Jeremy Horowitz, 9to5Mac

At some point following the September 9th announcement of the 2015 iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus, iPad Pro and iPad mini 4, Apple quietly modified the tech specs and comparison pages for 2014’s iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, and iPad Air 2 to bump them all from Bluetooth 4.0 to Bluetooth 4.2, the latest version of the increasingly popular wireless standard.

Overcast 2.0: Streaming, Chapters, New Patronage Model, And An Interview With Marco Arment, by Federico Viticci, MacStories

With version 2.0, Overcast users will be able to stream episodes and use audio effects at the same time, getting the same experience of Overcast 1.0 with no upfront download required. But more importantly, Arment is taking a bold step with pricing: Overcast 2.0 is a completely free app, with an optional patronage model to support Arment directly.

App Content Will Soon Be Available In Safari Search Results As Google Expands App Indexing To iOS 9, by Juli Clover, MacRumors

To use the feature, developers need to add Universal Links to their iOS apps and then integrate with Google's SDK. For end users, this change will result in better integration between search results and apps.

Solution to Yesterday's Puzzle

Consider, if you will, the following sequence of phrases:

Oman Lion Unit (Mountain Lion)
Vice Marks (Mavericks)
Moist Eye (Yosemite)

Which of the following will follow the sequence above?

Pool Wardens (Snow Leopard)
Alpine Cat (El Capitan)
Loin (Lion)
Old Pear (Leopard)

The answer is, obviously, Alpine Cat.

Thanks for reading.

Fri, Oct 9, 2015The Audible-Cues Edition

The Blind Deserve Tech Support, Too, by Jon Kelvey, Slate

Not to heap too much praise on Apple, but it seems to understand that accessible technical support is part and parcel of the accessible design of their products. When Chris Danielsen, the director of publications at the National Federation of the Blind, accidentally locked the file vault on his Mac and disabled voice-over control on the computer, an Apple tech support representative was able to guide him through a login process using tonal prompts. “It was a combination of the device having audible cues that I could use and the tech support rep knowing that it had audible cues that I could use.”


When I followed up with Lenovo to make sure it did not want to make any larger statement about its commitment to accessibility in its products and services, I got a short and simple email in reply which read, “this matter did not involve product design.”

That’s exactly the problem.

App Store Removes Root Certificate-Based Ad Blockers Over Privacy Concerns, by Rene Ritchie, iMore

I was surprised the root certificate-based ad blocking apps were approved to begin with. They perform deep packet inspection of everything done on the internet, including secure financial transactions and private communications, on the ad-blocker's servers and any servers involved in their chain, and in a way that's not easily toggled on or off.

There will no doubt be complaints from people who think they want these apps, and from developers who make the apps. But the potential risk of abuse is simply too high.

Battery Realities

Apple Says Battery Performance Of New iPhones’ A9 Chips Vary Only 2-3%, by Matthew Panzarino

Apple said that its own testing and data gathered from its customers after a few weeks with the device show that the actual battery life of both devices varies just 2-3%. That’s far, far too low to be noticeable in real-world usage.

Smartphone Battery Myths, Explained, by Thorin Klosowski, Lifehacker

We like to think of our smartphones as little computers, and we treat them like so. On your laptop, having a bunch of apps open at once—especially ones that connect to the internet—strains your battery, so it makes sense that your smartphone would work the same way, right? Wrong. That’s not how smartphones work.

In the case of iOS, apps do not stay open the same way they do on a computer. When you leave an app, it’s frozen, doesn’t do anything, and doesn’t require any resources. Closing them does nothing for your battery— except it costs CPU power and battery to close everything.

Finger Printin' Good

Using Apple Pay At Starbucks, KFC And Chili’s, by Katie Benner, New York Times

On Thursday, Jennifer Bailey, vice president of Apple Pay, said that some Starbucks stores will accept Apple Pay, a mobile payments system, this year as part of a pilot program. Ms. Bailey made the announcement at the Code Mobile conference, a tech industry event, where she added that all Starbucks stores will accept Apple Pay sometime in 2016, as will the restaurant chains KFC and Chili’s.

Delta's 'Fly Delta' App Updated With Apple Pay Support, by Husain Sumra, MacRumors

This makes Delta the first U.S.-based airline to allow users to purchase tickets via Apple Pay.

The State Of Apple Pay, by Graham Spencer, MacStories

Now that we're approaching the one year anniversary of Apple Pay on October 20 and with Apple's Vice President of Apple Pay speaking at the Code/Mobile conference later today, I thought it might be interesting to take stock of what has happened with Apple Pay so far, and what's next for it.


WiFi Explorer Is A Must For Every Mac Owner's Digital Toolbox, by Steven Sande, Apple World Today

Any Mac professionals who must perform WiFi network troubleshooting regularly should have WiFi Explorer in their toolkit. Even for regular Mac users, though, the app is perfect for helping you fine-tune your home or office network or perhaps persuade your boss (or spouse) that you need a new router.

Boxes 2 Review: Organizer iPhone App Is Like A Facebook For Pack Rats, by J.R. Bookwalter, Macworld

Boxes 2 provides a virtual “place for your stuff” where real-world objects can be photographed, cataloged, and stored into private or public “boxes” in the cloud. Although the app is free, a $10 annual subscription is required to use Premium features like unlimited storage, adding receipts, custom image filters, or custom profile backgrounds.

Beautiful New App Is Like A Stress-Relieving Lava Lamp, by Liz Stinson, Wired

Pause is designed to help you relax, and it does, much in the way watching floating clouds or staring at a particularly entrancing screensaver might.


Analyzing Apple's Statement On TSMC And Samsung A9 SoCs, by Ryan Smith and Joshua Ho, AnandTech

To that end I suspect that Apple's statement is not all that far off. They are of course one of the few parties able to actually analyze a large number of phones, and perhaps more to the point, having a wide variation in battery life on phones - even if every phone meets the minimum specifications - is not a great thing for Apple. It can cause buyers to start hunting down phones with "golden" A9s, and make other buyers feel like they've been swindled by not receiving an A9 with as low the power consumption as someone else. To be clear there will always be some variance and this is normal and expected, but if Apple has done their homework they should have it well understood and reasonably narrow. The big risk to Apple is that dual sourcing A9s in this fashion makes that task all the harder, which is one of the reasons why SoCs are rarely dual sourced.

How Might Apple Manufacture A Car?, by WIll Knight, MIT Technology Review

Industry experts say the company could produce vehicles in much the same way that it makes iPhones and watches: by outsourcing the production of components and contracting with existing manufacturers. What’s more, as cars become more electrified and computerized, Apple’s existing expertise in software, user interfaces, and batteries may become an increasingly valuable asset.

What’s It Like To Attend A Big Apple Event?, by Patrick May, San Jose Mercury News

When Amazon Dies, by Adrienne Lafrance, The Atlantic

All this signals a larger cultural shift in the way people think about ownership of media in the 21st century, or how they ought to be thinking of it. Increasingly, the purchase of digital works is treated like the purchase of software, which has gone from something you buy on a disc to something downloadable with an Internet connection. “You might think you’re buying Microsoft Office, but according to your user agreement you’re merely leasing it,” Vaidhyanathan said. “You can think of music and video as just another form of software. There is a convergence happening.”

It’s Apple’s World, So Why Do Other Smartphone Makers Even Bother?, by Ashlee Vance, Bloomberg

Following years of bumbling, Hewlett-Packard, Nokia, and other onetime powers have given up on them. Microsoft, which bought Nokia’s phone unit for $9.5 billion last year,wrote off $7.5 billion of it in July. For stubborn smartphone brands like LG, Sony, HTC, and Lenovo, things keep looking tougher. They’re like Sisyphus pushing his boulder up the hill, only the boulder grows a little bigger with each passing day.

Friday Puzzle

Consider, if you will, the following sequence of phrases:

Oman Lion Unit
Vice Marks
Moist Eye

Which of the following will follow the sequence above?

Pool Wardens
Alpine Cat
Old Pear

Have fun. And thanks for reading.

Thu, Oct 8, 2015The These-Acoustic-Signifiers Edition

Sound Decision, by Adi Robertson, The Verge

There’s no such thing as a "natural" computer-interface sound. But for decades, an entire industry of musicians, engineers, and advertisers has devoted itself to creating these acoustic signifiers, from the moment we boot up a machine to the moment we shut it down.

Why Apple Tv Games Must All Use The Siri Remote, But That Might Not Last, by Dave Tach, Polygon

At first, it appeared that the Apple TV was designed to change Apple's rules. Now, it seems that old rules from related but different ecosystems subsumed some of the gaming focus for the new Apple TV. The opinionated Cupertino-based company is asserting its belief, at least for now, that the new Apple TV is good for gaming, but not necessarily in the same ways that traditional consoles are. From Apple's perspective, it's better to require that all games be developed with the platform in mind than to confuse Apple TV owners or display a warning message saying that a game requires a controller.

This is only the beginning, though. Apple's rules and opinions are subject to change. The tvOS documentation remains explicit about this, and the company has a history of revisiting its decisions.

As HopStop Nears End Of The Line, Transfer To Citymapper, by Jonah Bromwich, New York Times

If HopStop had remained the only reliable transit app in town, this would come as bad news. Luckily, HopStop was overtaken by a competitor two years ago. That competitor, Citymapper, remains the single best app for finding your way in the city.


Microsoft Releases Office For Mac 2011 Update To Fix Outlook El Capitan Bug, by Juli Clover, MacRumors

Microsoft today released an update for Microsoft Office for Mac 2011, which fixes a significant Outlook bug that Office users ran into after upgrading to OS X El Capitan. After installing the new Apple operating system, many Outlook 2011 users found themselves unable to access their mail due to a syncing issue that caused the app to hang whenever it attempted to access the server.

Lightroom For iPad And iPhone Are Now Totally Free, No Desktop App Or Subscription Needed, by Ben Lovejoy, 9to5Mac

iPulse 3 For Mac Arrives Ready For OS X El Capitan, by Joseph Keller, iMore

iPulse 3, a utility that monitors various systems on your Mac, is now available on the Mac App Store.

Hands On: HazeOver: Distraction Dimmer 1.5 (OS X), by MacNN

HazeOver: Distraction Dimmer 1.5 for OS X focuses you by making the document you're working on be clear and vivid, while the rest of your desktop is darker, dimmed, almost greyed out.

Hands On: Steward 1.0 (OS X), by MacNN

So, Steward is really more of a list maker than a database. There are plenty of people who want to make lists, and Steward works well for them.

Apple Reverses Itself And Greenlights D.C. Speed Camera App, by Faiz Siddiqui, Washington Post

An app that pings drivers approaching D.C. speed cameras has gotten the green light from Apple, a week after its rejection by the tech giant was first reported.

Northern Virginia developer Charles Yeh said the company e-mailed him out of the blue Tuesday morning to say his app, Speed Cameras Alert, had been reviewed and approved. By afternoon, it was available in the app store, ready to be downloaded — for free.

Amazon's Latest Kindle Update Makes Audible Integration Even Better, by Joe White, AppAdvice

Now, as of version 4.1.2 of the application, e-book readers can download, play, and pause their Audible audio books without leaving the page they’re currently viewing.

PBS LearningMedia Launches Free iPad App For Students, Updates LearningMedia Service, by Leila Meyer, THE Journal


Harry Potter Enhanced Editions Now Available Exclusively On iBooks, by Joe Rossignol, MacRumors

The enhanced Harry Potter books feature the full original text, interactive animations, detailed artwork and annotations from Rowling. There are also exclusive custom covers for each title, custom Harry Potter typefaces and new section headers and drop caps.

App Store Bug Fixed, Apps Returning To Purchase History, by Rene Ritchie, iMore

Microsoft’s Very Good Day, by Nicholas Thompson, New Yorker

Afterward, I wandered up a couple of flights of stairs, through Moynihan Station’s cavernous halls, and sat down with Nadella to ask him what he’d meant by his remark. “The lesson we have learned is that there’s going to be more personal computing in our lives,” he replied. Forms will change, functions will change, devices will change, he explained, and so, “You can’t fall in love with this one thing becoming the hub for all things and for all time to come.”

That philosophy is, in many ways, the opposite of the old Microsoft. The company under Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer was a hyper-competitive, cutthroat organization focussed on getting as many people as possible to run Microsoft software on personal computers. The company was so in love with P.C.s (the hub for all things and for all time to come) that it came late to the Internet and much, much too late to mobile phones. Windows used to run on ninety per cent of computing devices; now, with the rise of Android and Apple phones, it runs on eleven per cent.

iPod Days

I was listening to some old tunes on Apple Music with iTunes Classic Visualizer turned on. Bought back a lot of memories. If you haven't try that lately, maybe you should.

Thanks for reading.

Wed, Oct 7, 2015The Deep-Packet-Inspection Edition

Apple Approves An App That Blocks Ads In Native Apps, Including Apple News, by Sarah Perez, TechCrunch

It’s unclear if Apple is setting a precedent, or has only accidentally allowed the approval of a new app, known as Been Choice, into the iTunes App Store. The app claims to block advertisements not only in mobile applications, but also in native mobile apps, including Facebook and even Apple’s own News application. To make this work, Been Choice offers a combination of a content blocker for Safari and a VPN service, the latter which allows it to filter out ad traffic using deep packet inspection.

Apple’s New Two-Factor Authentication Bumps Up Security And Ease Of Use, by Glenn Fleishman, Macworld

Apple is slowly rolling out a revised system to let you use a second factor with iCloud and other services that use an Apple ID.

iPhone Malware Is Hitting China. Let’s Not Be Next, by Andy Greenberg, Wired

The good news, Mogull says, is that both malware outbreaks found only limited ways to circumvent the iPhone’s security measures, not to fundamentally break them in a way that would allow for a more widespread attack. “As interesting as I find this—and I do think we’ll see it again—it’ll never be like the malware days of Windows XP, for instance,” Mogull says of the Xcode attack. “There are scalability issues…Apple’s decisions have made it very difficult to get sustained, mass exploitation.”

Microsoft's Fall Colors

Microsoft Reveals New Band 2, Lumia Phones, Surface Pro 4, And Surface Book, by Mitchel Broussard, MacRumors

At a media event today, Microsoft announced a handful of new products and several updates to existing products coming from the company in 2015 and beyond. Topics fortoday's event included the Microsoft Band 2, Lumia 950 and 950 XL smartphones, Microsoft Surface Pro 4, and the all-new Surface Book.

With The Surface Book, Microsoft Is Taking The Game To Apple, by Samuel Gibbs, The Guardian

The fact that Microsoft – the purveyor of the Windows operating system which runs on almost every laptop that doesn’t run Apple’s OS X or Linux – has finally made a notebook is a turn up for the books. But it was the laptop’s fancy bending hinge, and the fact that the screen was detachable and became a Surface tablet on its own, which set pulses racing.

How The Surface Book Compares To The iPad Pro, MacBook Pro, And Surface Pro, by Jacob Kastrenakes, The Verge

The Surface Pro is obviously striking a chord with consumers. Sales are up, and literally everyone is starting to copy it. Apple with the iPad Pro. Google with the Pixel C. And I'd sure be willing to bet that Microsoft's hardware partners are close to unveiling new Surface competitors of their own. Microsoft pushed that forward today with an even more powerful version of its flagship tablet, the Surface Pro 4. It manages to both be thinner and lighter, while including a slightly larger display without making the body any wider or taller.


Apple’s Beats Announces The $229 Pill+, Will Hit Shelves Next Month, by Drew Olanoff, TechCrunch

Combining the cool of the Beats brand with the hardware design sensibility from Apple should be an interesting combination to watch out for in the near-future.

Tweetbot For Mac Updated To Version 2.1 With iOS Feature Parity, Bug Fixes, by Mike Beasley, 9to5Mac

The all-new Activity view has been added to the Mac client. Like in the iOS version, you’ll find all of the recent favorites, retweets, and other interactions you’ve received in this tab. Quoted tweets also show in the mentions tab to help improve conversation flow.

Mementum An Easy-To-use Voice Recorder For Mac OS, by Dennis Sellers, Apple World Today

It lets you record vocal memos, then sort your recordings by categories. You can also write accompanying text notes. With version 1.1 it adds new keyboard shortcuts and interface improvements.

TripGo - iOS Review, by Luke Murphy, Tapscape

TripGo is a free navigation app that will combine every possible transportation method tell you the quickest, cheapest or most efficient way to get to your destination, available for iPhone, iPad and the Apple Watch.

NetSpot For Mac OS X Updated With Three New Features, by MacTech


Apple Removes Game Center Sandbox, Migrates Test Servers To Release Environment, by Softpedia

Fixing Safari View Controller, by Dan Provost, Studio Neat

Tweetbot 4 now takes advantage of the Safari View Controller (and I don’t blame them). However, there is only one way to dismiss the view: the Done button waaaayyyy up in the upper right corner.

But here is the egregious error: when you scroll, the Done button goes away. That’s right: your only escape hatch is hidden as soon as you move.


Apple Begins Selling Official Apple Watch Lugs To Third-Party Band Makers&utm_content=FeedBurner), by Roger Fingas, AppleInsider

The lugs are all stainless steel, and come with the phrase "Made for Apple Watch" etched on them. 38- and 42-millimeter versions are available in lots of 25 or 200. Costs range between $278.75 for 25 38-millimeter lugs, to $1,866 for 200 42-millimeter units.

Apple Planning To Launch New 4K 21.5-Inch iMac Next Week, iPad Pro In Early November, by Mark Gurman, 9to5Mac

The new 4K iMacs will physically look like the current non-4K version, so the highlights of the upgrade will be the new 4096 x 2304 screen and much faster graphics cards.

Apple's Court-Appointed Monitor Says The Company 'Has Been Its Own Worst Enemy', by Joseph Ax, Reuters

In his report, Bromwich said Apple had for the first time created a set of antitrust procedures, implemented training and improved engagement among its senior executives.

However, the company still rejected many of Bromwich’s requests for information "for no good reason," he wrote.

Why Google Is Beating Apple In The Battle For The Classroom, by Wayne Rash, Yahoo! Tech

The bottom line is that, because of their comparatively low acquisition and operating costs, Google’s Chrome OS devices are gaining ground, followed by Microsoft. Apple, it seems, may have priced itself out of the game.

How Three Survivors Of Suicide Spent Their Last Days On Earth, by Michelle Woo, Upvoted

Their stories often go unspoken due to stigma, shame and a fear of triggering dangerous ideas in others. (Talking about suicide in the context of care and empathy does not, in fact, lead to more suicide.) This silence in society has consequences—survivors frequently experience deep isolation, while family members, friends and mental health professionals are left with little insight on how they can connect with those struggling with suicidal thoughts.

Though the climate of secrecy is changing. Through online forums, peer-to-peer support groups and taboo-breaking movements such as Live Through This and Time To Change, people are talking about their attempts and finding compassion, connection and the strength to step back into their lives.

In a haunting Ask Reddit thread, three survivors wrote openly about the day they tried to end their pain. We spoke with them about the moments before, during and after their attempts, along with their reflections today.

Loving The Competition

"As the majority of hobbyists must be aware, most of you steal your software. Hardware must be paid for, but software is something to share. Who cares if the people who worked on it get paid?" -- ex-CEO from a company that used to mostly sell software.

Thanks for reading.

Tue, Oct 6, 2015The Collect-Manage-Analyze Edition

Europe’s Highest Court Strikes Down Safe Harbor Data Sharing Between EU, US, by Sebastian Anthony, Ars Technica

Europe's top court, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU), has struck down the 15-year-old Safe Harbour agreement that allowed the free flow of information between the US and EU. The most significant repercussion of this ruling is that American companies, such as Facebook, Google, and Twitter, may not be allowed to send user data from Europe back to the US.

It's important to note that the CJEU's ruling will not immediately prevent US companies from sending data back to the motherland. Rather, the courts in each EU member state can now rule that the Safe Harbour agreement is illegal in their country. It is is very unlikely, however, that a national court would countermand the CJEU's ruling in this case.

No Safe Harbor: How NSA Spying Undermined U.S. Tech And Europeans' Privacy, by Danny O'Brien, Eleectronic Frontier Foundation

The spread of knowledge about the NSA's surveillance programs has shaken the trust of customers in U.S. Internet companies like Facebook, Google, and Apple: especially non-U.S. customers who have discovered how weak the legal protections over their data is under U.S. law. It should come as no surprise, then, that the European Court of Justice (CJEU) has decided that United States companies can no longer be automatically trusted with the personal data of Europeans.

Porsche Opts For CarPlay Only With Latest Carrera Models, by MacNN

Porsche has opted to support only Apple's CarPlay infotainment technology in its latest 911 Carrera and Carrera S models, blocking Android Auto support chiefly because Google demands detailed information from the vehicle's onboard diagnostics unit that is then sent to Google, compared to Apple's need only for the Powertrain Control Module (PCM) to tell CarPlay if the car is in motion. The carmaker was reportedly unhappy with Google's need to collect intricate data on the car's performance for no apparent reason.

Apple Today, Tomorrow

Apple’s Official Statement On The YiSpecter iOS Malware, by Dave Mark, The Loop

“This issue only impacts users on older versions of iOS who have also downloaded malware from untrusted sources. We addressed this specific issue in iOS 8.4 and we have also blocked the identified apps that distribute this malware. We encourage customers to stay current with the latest version of iOS for the latest security updates. We also encourage them to only download from trusted sources like the App Store and pay attention to any warnings as they download apps.”

Apple Shares Six New Apple Watch Ads Showcasing Health Capabilities, Navigation, And More, by Chance Miller, 9to5Mac

All six of the ads have different focuses, but all of them center around what Apple Watch is useful for and in what instances it can be used effectively.

iOS 9 App Slicing Feature Once Again Available For Developers, by Juli Clover, MacRumors

Apple today updated developers on the status of app slicing, noting that it's once again available for use following the iOS 9.0.2 update and the recent Xcode 7.0.1 update.

Apple’s Healthkit Leaving Researchers ‘Delighted’, by James Rogers, Fox News

“We are delighted with the initial results we’ve seen after six months of using Apple’s ResearchKit framework for our Asthma Health app,” said Eric Schadt, professor of genomics at the Icahn School of Medicine, in a press release. “We recruited and enrolled over 8,600 research participants in our study, remotely via the Asthma Health app without direct, in-person, contact.”


The app broke the geographic barrier that typically limits traditional research to the local area of a university or medical centre, according to a spokesman for the Icahn School of Medicine. “For our study, 87 per cent of participants live outside of NY and NJ,” he told, in an email.

Young App Developer Has Caught The Eye Of Apple, by David Pierini, Cult of Mac

Few things could excuse a kid from skipping his middle school graduation. Connor Chung had a note from Apple.

It explained he would be needed in San Francisco for the WWDC. Once there, he would meet important people like Tim Cook, take part in brainstorming sessions with developers and engineers and lay the groundwork for an Apple Watch app that would be among the first in iTunes on the day OS 2 launched.

Faster Actions Or Less Distractions

Hiding The Menubar, by Ben Brooks

Hiding the menubar makes looking at the menubar a conscious decision and therefore I can add the clock back in. I have to not only look at the menubar, but move my mouse to the menubar to see anything. And that is great for productivity, because it is more challenging than just glancing.

My focus has gone through the roof. I do lose track of time really easily now, but I’d rather lose track of time, and rely on reminders, than be distracted by all the little things I could add to the menubar.

On the other hand, I suspect selecting menu items will be slower. If the menu bar is visible, you have a general impression on how to move the mouse cursor. If the menu bar is not visible, you are basically aiming for a menu item blindly.


The Beats Solo2 Headphones Don’t Deserve Their Bad Rap, by Josh Centers, TidBITS

You can probably find “better” headphones for the same price or less, but that depends on your definition of “better.” The Beats Solo2s are ideal for a college student: someone often on the go, who needs excellent sound isolation, and who prefers the newer, compressed music that the Beats sound is designed around.

Dragon 5.0.1 Review: Speech Recognition For The Mac Gets Improved Accuracy, Better Interface, by Kirk McElhearn, Macworld

This new version offers not only improved accuracy but a much better interface that doesn’t get in the way. If you’re used to dictating, you’ll definitely want to update to Dragon 5. If you’ve never used this software before, this is a great time to check it out. The fact that you can get excellent results without buying a specific microphone makes it more affordable, and easier to use.

iClipboard Is A Must Have Accessory For OS X El Capitan, by Dennis Sellers, Apple World Today

iClipboard automatically keeps a history of everything a user copies to the system clipboard in any application. It then provides five different ways to paste clippings from the history. iClipboard also features an interface that shows previews of each clipping.

Siri Can Now Control Your Philips Hue Lights, by Tim Moynihan, Wired

The Hue app is still only designed to operate Philips’s bulbs, but Yianni says the new HomeKit integration will help the lighting system interact with other HomeKit-compatible wares. For instance, you could tie a certain thermostat temperature to a certain lighting scheme. Things like that will likely need to be done through Apple’s upcoming Home app, or a similar “hub” built to control several devices from several manufacturers at once.

Beddit Launches Apple Watch Sleep Tracking App As Smart Sleep Tracker Comes To Apple Stores, by Zac Hall, 9to5Mac

Sleep tracking accessory maker Beddit is out with a new watchOS 2 app for Apple Watch today. Because Beddit offers a dedicated sensor for tracking your sleep duration and quality each night, Apple Watch is able to charge overnight as needed and still present sleep data in the morning. Thanks to hardware access granted to native software, Beddit’s watchOS 2 app lets Apple Watch double as a sleep tracker during the day for measuring naps and creating silent alarms.

Never Forget To Download That Important App With Lookmark, by Brent Dirks, AppAdvice

As the name suggests, think of it as a bookmarking service for apps. For example, if you’re away from a Wi-Fi connection, you can only download apps smaller than 100MB. If you find one larger than that and want to save it for later, simply add it to Lookmark with the share extension.

Review: Chromecast Audio Brings New Life To Dated Speakers For Just $35, by Zac Hall, 9to5Mac

As it stands now, Chromecast Audio is an easy, cheap recommendation if you spend any time in the apps it already supports like Spotify, NPR One, and Pocketcast and want to modernize as standard speaker with a line-in, RCA, or optical input. The result is very similar to what Sonos offers through its all-in-one speakers, priced at $199 and above, only you don’t need to replace the speakers you already own.

YouTube For iOS Updated W/ Material Design Interface, In-App Video Editing Tools, by Chance Miller, 9to5Mac


Sorry, Unix Fans: OS X El Capitan Kills Root, by Paul Venezia, InfoWorld

Apple may be trying to protect and simplify life for its casual users, but it's doing so at the expense of high-end users and developers. Considering the vast numbers of Macs used for high-end video and audio production, photography, and software and hardware development of every stripe, it may be best not to upset that applecart.

Microsoft Serves Up Taco For Cross-Platform Mobile Dev, by Paul Krill, InfoWorld

Microsoft's tools provide command line utilities that make hybrid app development easier and faster, a Microsoft representative said. Mac OS X and Windows users can develop for Android, iOS, and Windows.

MediaTek Announces Two Software Development Kits For Apple HomeKit, by MacTech

The MT7688, for smart appliances runs on Linux and powers higher performance, more complex use cases, such as wireless speakers and webcams. The MT7687 is a low-power WiFi SoC, which enables any home appliance from garage doors, power switch to thermostats, and runs on the FreeRTOS operating system.


Adobe Backpedals On Commitment To Bring Metal To After Effects, by Joe Rossignol, MacRumors

"I am the person who makes the commitments for After Effects. The person who did the demonstration was a member of of our engineering team demonstrating the results of an experiment," said Kopriva. "I certainly agree that the engineer who spoke on the Apple stage sent a confusing message. At this point, the best that I can do---as the leader of the After Effects team---is to clarify the reality, which I have done above on this thread."

The New York Times Says It Has More Subscribers Than Ever, by Julia Greenberg, Wired

Times may have more subscribers than ever before, but, now more than ever, it needs them.

Report: Butt Dials Are Clogging The 9-1-1 System, by Mary Beth Quirk, Consumerist

While it’s good for personal safety that mobile phones can call 9-1-1 without being unlocked, it’s creating a headache for call centers.


If Apple stops pushing to make ever thinner phones and tablets and computers, we will never get to paper-like computers that I can fold up and put in my pockets.

Thanks for reading.

Mon, Oct 5, 2015The Misusing-Private-APIs Edition

Tim Cook Honours Steve Jobs On Fourth Anniversary Of His Death, by Rhiannon Williams, Telegraph

In an internal email to staff seen by The Telegraph, chief executive Cook paid tribute to his former leader and "dear friend", stating that messages and drawings from Jobs' children were still displayed on Jobs' office whiteboard at Apple's Californian headquarters.

"Steve was a brilliant person, and his priorities were very simple," he wrote. "He loved his family above all, he loved Apple, and he loved the people with whom he worked so closely and achieved so much.

(Photo by thetaxhaven, Attribution 2.0 Generic.)

Misusing Private APIs

New Malware Called YiSpecter Is Attacking iOS Devices In China And Taiwan, by Catherine Shu, TechCrunch

Palo Alto Networks says YiSpecter is unusual for iOS malware—at least ones that have been identified so far—because it attacks jailbroken and non-jailbroken iOS devices by misusing private APIs to allow its four components (which are signed with enterprise certificates to appear legitimate) to download and install each other from a centralized server.


YiSpecter first spread by masquerading as an app that allows users to view free porn. It then infected more phones through hijacked traffic from Internet service providers, a Windows worm that first attacked QQ (an IM service by Tencent), and online communities where users install third-party apps in exchange for promotion fees from developers.


Apple Quietly Makes iCloud Opt-Out For iPhones, iPads, by Tim Biggs, Sydney Morning Herald

All aspects of iCloud are now turned on by default when setting up a new device on iOS 9, except for two. Keychain, the feature that saves the passwords and credit card numbers you enter in the Safari browser, still requires the user to manually turn it on. Email will also not be synced without the user turning it on from the settings.

Adobe Unveils New Mobile Apps, Adobe Portfolio And Updates To Desktop Apps At Adobe MAX, by Juli Cloer, MacRumors

The two new mobile apps Adobe is releasing today include Photoshop Fix and Capture CC. Photoshop Fix was highlighted on stage at Apple's recent iPad Pro unveiling, where it was used on the new 12.9-inch tablet. Photoshop Fix is an image retouching and restoration-focused app that includes powerful Photoshop tools like the Healing Brush and Liquify.

Capture CC, Adobe's second new mobile app, combines the capabilities of several existing Adobe apps including Adobe Brush, Adobe Shape, Adobe Color, and Adobe Hue, making the tools from each of these apps accessible in a single app. Several other Adobe apps like Lightroom Mobile, Photoshop Mix, Photoshop Sketch, Illustrator Draw, Premiere Clip, and Comp CC are also receiving minor updates today.

Paper Review, by Craig Grannell, Stuff

Paper [...] remains a first-rate app for getting quick ideas down and then dabbing virtual watercolours around your digital pen lines.

Mail Designer Pro 2.5: Perfect For Creating Fancy Emails Or Newsletters, by Dennis Sellers, Apple World Today

Compatible with Mac OS X 10.7 and later, it allows you to create eye-popping emails — including HTML emails — quickly and easily without knowing anything about HTML coding. With version 2.5, Mail Designer Pro works with OS X El Capitan and all of its features such as Split View.

Bartender 2 Review: OS X Utility Cleans Up The Menu Bar, by Glenn Fleishman, Macworld

Bartender’s icon can trigger one of three behaviors: dropping down its own bar, which can be repositioned as you like, its default behavior; or hide application menus so that you can see all menu-bar items or just those you haven’t marked as hidden in per-item preferences. Hot keys can be set to bring those modes up regardless of your preference, and to use the keyboard to move through each item.

Instagram Blames Apple For Strict Anti-Nudity Stance, by Mariella Moon, Engadget

Since [Instagram] wants to retain its current 12+ rating in order to have a wider audience -- only rated 17+ apps are allowed to feature explicit content -- it has to continue taking down posts that showcase nudity.


Carriers Are Making More From Mobile Ads Than Publishers Are, by Rob Leathern, Medium

Consumers pay 16.6x more in data costs than top 50 news sites are making in ad revenue.

The Ethical Case For Ad-Blocking, by Paul Bernal

What is clear to me, however, is that we need a new economic model to replace the current broken one. I do not know what that model will be, but I am confident that it will emerge. The internet will not ‘break’, any more than the music industry will collapse. Our disruption is part of how that new model will be created and developed. We should not be cowed by the advertising industry, particularly on ethical grounds.

Is The Dotcom Bubble About To Burst (Again)?, by Carole Cadwalladr, The Observer

In Silicon Valley, millions of dollars change hands every day as investors hunt the next big thing – the ‘unicorn’, or billion-dollar tech firm. There are now almost 150, but can they all succeed?

End Of The World Plan: Scientists To Nudge Asteroid Off Course As Practice For Protecting The Earth, by Andrew Griffin, The Independent

The joint US-European Aida (Asteroid Deflection & Assessment) mission will send a small spacecraft to crash into the egg-shaped rock, known as Didymoon. That asteroid doesn’t pose any threat to us — and is far too small to do so — but the mission will be important test for whether our plans would work if we do eventually come at risk of civilisation being wiped out by a space rock.

If this is a sci-fi movie, this will be the point where we all ask, what could possibly go wrong?

Ship It!

"Fixed deadline, negotiable scope" has to be the most underrated pattern in product management. It's the secret to shipping.

— Ryan Singer (@rjs) October 5, 2015

Thanks for reading.

Sun, Oct 4, 2015The Others-Can-Join-In Edition

Tim Cook Talks Apple TV, by John Paczkowski, BuzzFeed

“At launch we’ll have iTunes, Netflix, Hulu, Showtime, and HBO — so we’ll have five major inputs into universal search initially,” Cook said. “But we’re also opening an API, so that others can join in.”

Apple's Tim Cook Says Fight For Gay Rights Far From Over, by Gerrit De Vynck, Bloomberg

The country still hasn’t achieved equality, despite a landmark ruling by the Supreme Court giving gays and lesbians the right to marry nationwide, Cook said in a Saturday night speech at a dinner hosted by Human Rights Campaign in Washington D.C.

“Thirty-one states, more than half the stars on our American flag, have no laws to protect gay and transgendered people from discrimination,” Cook said. “Discrimination doesn’t simply fade. It has to be pushed back, challenged, overcome and then kept at bay.”

Human Rights Campaign Honors Tim Cook With National Visibility Award At Washington D.C. Dinner, by Zac Hall, 9to5Mac


Steller, The Storytelling iOS App, Gets Revamped Explore Page And More, by Joe White, AppAdvice


Metal Performance In OS X El Capitan: Sometimes Great, Often Mixed, by Andrew Cunningham, Ars Technica

As with DirectX 12, results vary from test to test and GPU to GPU.


Apple Pokes Fun At Windows 10 Logo, Replaces It With A Normal Window, by Usama Jawad, Neowin

What Is Phubbing, And Is It Ruining Your Relationships?, by Lulu Chang, Digital Trends

According to new research, the act of phubbing, or phone snubbing, is a very real epidemic in the United States, and aside from being rude and inconsiderate, may also come with a few more insidious results.

The Inside Story Of How $1 Billion Evernote Went From Silicon Valley Darling To Deep Trouble, by Eugene Kim, Business Insider

Evernote recently began adding new pricing tiers, designed to offer more options for non-paying users to give the company money.

That move is long overdue, say some people close to the company, who say the company spent too much time experimenting with random products instead of refining its monetization efforts.

Parting Words

In case of fire ... #Git #Commit

— Andy Grunwald (@andygrunwald) October 3, 2015

Thanks for reading.

Sat, Oct 3, 2015The A-Funny-Thing Edition

Apple’s 3D Touch Is The Start Of A New Interface Revolution, by David Pierce, Wired

If you want to understand the potential of 3D Touch, the new of method of tapping and pressing on the screens of the latest iPhones, forget about the marketing lingo. Don’t think about Peeks or Pops or Quick Actions. Instead, think about reading—the kind you do with a textbook, highlighting text and scribbling in the margins. The kind of reading that you basically can’t do on your phone.

Tim Cook’s Apple Has Forced The Whole Tech World To Realign, by Marcus Wohlsen, Wired

But then a funny thing happened. Apple customers didn’t start demanding new devices for work. They adapted their work to the Apple devices they already had.

Jimmy Iovine Wants You To Pay For Apple Music. Here's Why., by Ryan Faughnder, Los Angeles Times

In an interview at his Culver City office, Iovine laid out his plan to simplify music consumption and discovery with Apple's all-in-one service. Modern music delivery, he contends, is a messy patchwork of systems. People use AM/FM in the car, Pandora for online radio, iTunes for downloads and Spotify for instant access.

Apple Music's mission, Iovine says, is to combine all the features people enjoy into one tidy package and make things simpler for consumers.


New Wave Of Apple TV Developer Kits Opens Up Ahead Of Late October Launch, by Zac Hall, 9to5Mac

Citing ‘overwhelming demand’, Apple has expanded the number of Apple TV Developer Kits available for registered developers who applied for a chance to receive the pre-release hardware last month. A number of developers (but not all) who previously missed out on the initial wave of test units have been notified by Apple Developer Relations that more dev kits have been made available for $1 and will be available for ordering through next Friday at 5 pm local on October 9th.

BundleCult, MacSprout, Others Allegedly Scamming Developers, by MacNN

A group of developers are alleging that the people behind the recently-completed BundleCult bundles has a history of not paying developers.The lead developer of CoreCode, Julian Mayer, contacted us first to discuss the issue. After not getting paid for his offering, Mayer found similar issues across several bundles, which then all seem to link to the same organizing entity.

Lessons Learned Writing Highly Available Code, by Jacob Greenleaf, Medium


Why iPads And Chromebooks Won’t Save The Classroom, by Alex Klein, Fast Company

Why, in the age of computational creativity, when every school district, mayor, and R&B frontman wants to get your kids coding—creating with technology, not just consuming it—do we keep putting iPads and Chromebooks in students’ hands?

The Future Of The Internet Is Flow, by David Gelernter and Eric Freeman, Wall Street Journal

Today, time-based structures, flowing data—in streams, feeds, blogs—increasingly dominate the Web. Flow has become the basic organizing principle of the cybersphere. The trend is widely understood, but its implications aren’t.

Bon Appetit

waiter, i'm in the mood to eat my nightmares. can you recommend anything?

— Flannery O'Connerd (@Slennon_) October 2, 2015

Thanks for reading.

Fri, Oct 2, 2015The Bad-Guys-Too Edition

Apple CEO Tim Cook: 'Privacy Is A Fundamental Human Right', by NPR

"National security always matters, obviously. But the reality is that if you have an open door in your software for the good guys, the bad guys get in there, too. Think about what happened in [Washington, D.C.] with ... literally tens of millions of employees of the government getting their data stolen. And so we think that our customers want us to help them keep their data safe. ..."

"I don't think you will hear the [National Security Agency] asking for a back door. ... There have been different conversations with the FBI, I think, over time. ... But my own view is everyone's coming around to some core tenets. And those core tenets are that encryption is a must in today's world."

Tim Cook To Receive Human Rights Campaign's Visibility Award For LGBT Efforts, by AppleInsider

The Human Rights Campaign announced Thursday that it will present Apple CEO Tim Cook with the Visibility Award at its 19th annual National Dinner next month, an event honoring high-profile public figures who fight for LGBT equality.

How Steve Jobs Fleeced Carly Fiorina, by Steven Levy, Medium

Ms. Fiorina’s trainwreck stint at HP has been well documented. But I want to address one tiny but telling aspect of her misbegotten reign: an episode that involved her good friend Steve Jobs. It is the story of the HP iPod.

The iPod, of course, was Apple’s creation, a groundbreaking digital music player that let you have “a music library in your pocket.” Introduced in 2001, it gained steam over the next few years and by the end of 2003, the device was a genuine phenomenon. So it was news that in January 2004, Steve Jobs and Carly Fiorina made a deal where HP could slap its name on Apple’s wildly successful product. Nonetheless, HP still managed to botch things. It could not have been otherwise, really, because Steve Jobs totally outsmarted the woman who now claims she can run the United States of America.


Say Goodbye To Repairing File Permissions In El Capitan, by Peter Cohen, iMore

Manual disk permission repair simply isn't necessary anymore. El Capitan automatically repairs file permissions during software updates and changes. So don't worry that the repair permissions option isn't available in Disk Utility anymore. It's become redundant, thanks to improved file integrity in El Cap.

Tweetbot 4.0 Becomes The Best Alternative Twitter Client For iPhone And Now iPad, by Romain Dillet, TechCrunch

The main reason why is that this app is a pure joy to use. It looks fantastic and works amazingly well, especially when you see it in action.

Tweetbot 4 Review: Bigger Bot, by Federico Viticci, MacStories

Tweetbot 4 offers a dramatic overhaul of the iPad app, bringing a new vision for a Twitter client that's unlike anything I've tried on the iPad before.

Carrot: Weather With Attitude, by David Sparks, MacSparky

Best of all though is that the app has a sense of humor. It's kind of malicious but since that matches my own attitudes toward weather, it's perfect.


Safari View Controller And Automatic Safari Reader Activation, by Federico Viticci, MacStories

I think this is a great way to provide a "readability" mode in apps by combining the benefits of Safari View Controller with the convenience of Safari Reader. I hope that more apps will consider this option.


Apple Diversifies Board, Elects Former Boeing Executive, by Dawn Chmielewski, Re/code

James A. Bell, a former chief financial officer and corporate president of Boeing, has been elected to Apple’s board of directors.

The appointment of Bell, an executive with decades of experience in finance and strategic planning who is also black, comes at a time when the Rev. Jesse Jackson and the Congressional Black Caucus have been calling on Apple and other technology companies to diversify their boards of directors. Bell fills the vacancy left by Mickey Drexler’s departure earlier this year.

Apple Likely Trying To File For 'AirPods' Trademark, by Eric Slivka, MacRumors

We have been unable to find a concrete link between Apple and the AirPods trademark, but the evidence we've gathered is highly suggestive that Apple is indeed behind the filing. Assuming this is indeed the case, speculation then turns to the reasons why Apple is interested in the name.

My wish-list for a wireless earpod: all-day battery life. charge via lightning just like the Apple Pencil, and usable while being charged.

Amazon To Ban Sale Of Apple, Google Video-Streaming Devices, by Spencer Spoer, Bloomberg

The Seattle-based Web retailer sent an e-mail to its marketplace sellers that it will stop selling the Apple TV and Google’s Chromecast since those devices don’t "interact well" with Prime Video. No new listings for the products will be allowed and posting of existing inventory will be removed Oct. 29, Amazon said. Prime Video doesn’t run easily on its rival’s hardware.

Amazon Is Banning Apple TV And Chromecast. And That’s Gross, by Brian Barrett, Wired

Both companies are acting out of self-interest, but the degree to which that disjoints its customers’ expectations couldn’t be more different. You go to the Apple Store looking for Apple products; you go to Amazon looking for whatever you want. By the end of October, at least in this instance, you won’t be able to find it.

Live Photo Is The New EXIF

I am guessing something like the following will be happening to someone soon...

  1. Someone takes a photo -- most likely a selfie on his or her brand new iPhone 6S;

  2. Someone takes a look at the photo, does not notice anything wrong, and shares it to other people or to the entire internet;

  3. Some other people notices this is no ordinary photo, but an Apple Live Photo, watches the video portion of the Live Photo, and finds incriminating evidence, or wardrobe malfunction, or something interesting.

  4. That someone is now famous for his or her 15 minutes.

Parting Words

this is an outstanding semicolon

— Chris Heller (@c_heller) October 1, 2015

Thanks for reading.

Thu, Oct 1, 2015The Already-Trusted Edition

Apple Releases iOS 9.0.2 With Fixes For iMessage, iCloud Drive, Podcasts, More, by Zac Hall, 9to5Mac

The update includes bug fixes and performance improvements for iCloud Backup, iMessage activation, Apple’s Podcasts app, and issues with cellular data usage. The release cycle suggests Apple is moving faster to ship small updates to address specific issues with iOS 9.

iOS 9.0.2 Fixes Lockscreen Privacy Bug That Allowed Access To Photos And Contacts, by Mike Beasley, 9to5Mac

Drop-Dead Simple Exploit Completely Bypasses Mac’s Malware Gatekeeper, by Dan Goodin, Ars Technica

Patrick Wardle, director of research of security firm Synack, said the bypass stems from a key shortcoming in the design of Gatekeeper rather than a defect in the way it operates. Gatekeeper's sole function is to check the digital certificate of a downloaded app before it's installed to see if it's signed by an Apple-recognized developer or originated from the official Apple App Store. It was never set up to prevent apps already trusted by OS X from running in unintended or malicious ways, as the proof-of-concept exploit he developed does.

XcodeGhost Exploits The Security Economics Of Apple’s Ecosystem, by Rich Mogull and Adam C. Engst, TidBITS

In the end, that old dictum of journalism — “follow the money” — is what anyone concerned with security needs to think about as well. No technology can be perfectly secure, but by looking for places where a relatively small effort can be leveraged into a significant attack, security engineers can make attacks ever more expensive and thus limit them to highly specific situations. That has been Apple’s focus for some time now, but the company needs to apply that lens to its entire ecosystem, from the moment code is written to the point where an app is launched by a user.

Fixing Advertisements

Putting Mobile Ad Blockers To The Test, by Brian X. Chen, New York Times

While a 21 percent battery life increase from using Purify or Crystal may seem attractive, keep in mind that this applies only to web browsing, which is just one of many tasks you do on a smartphone. In everyday use, the improvement to overall battery life will be subtle.

But consumers who use ad blockers will enjoy speedier access to web content, not to mention the slimmer data sizes of web pages. That may encourage some publishers to re-evaluate their choices in mobile advertising methods.

Publishers That Say No To Automated Ad Sales, by Mike Shields, Wall Street Journal

Refinery29 and a host of other new-media companies—among them, Vice Media, Vox Media, BuzzFeed and Mic—are bucking that approach, arguing that automated ad technologies are to blame for overrunning the Internet with too many ads and obnoxious tracking mechanisms. [...] These publishers are opting to build their own technology to sell ads directly rather than employing third-party ad tech firms.

Google Ads Boss: ‘We Need To Deal With’ Ad Blocking As An Industry, by Mark Bergen, Re/code

Sridhar Ramaswamy, Google’s top advertising executive, thinks crappy ad experiences are behind the uptick in ad-blocking tools, and that Google, along with the advertising and publishing industries, is obliged to come up with a fix.


Apple Releases Safari 9 For Yosemite, by Roman Layola, Macworld

Reporta, A New App, Offers Journalists A Lifeline In Hazardous Situations, by Benjamin Mullin, Poynter

The app, which is available for Android and iOS devices, features a trio of functions that allow journalists to stay in touch with their contacts while reporting in hazardous areas.

TextWrangler 5 Brings OS X El Capitan Support, New Find Differences Workflow, And More, by Joseph Keller, Macworld

TextWrangler 5.0 features a new Find Differences workflow that allows for more efficient single-window presentation in both file and folder comparisons. The new sidebar will now identify mismatched files, and make it easier to copy files. The app also has new syntax coloring mechanics to allow greater flexibility in color choices, and several included languages now have more color options.

Popular Reeder 3 RSS Client Hits The Mac App Store With Redesigned Themes + OS X El Capitan Features, by Zac Hall, 9to5Mac

The new version also supports Apple’s new system font, San Francisco, plus a lot of customization options to make the reading environment best fit your needs.

Spread Happiness And Cheer In Real Ways With BeHppy, by Jeff Byrnes, AppAdvice

You know those Facebook hoaxes that say every time you share this particular post or like it, a charity will get a dollar? I usually just shrug those off, but someone has actually decided to make that idea a reality. BeHppy, an app that encourages nothing but happy thoughts, has just been updated with a new way to spread happiness even further.

You Can Now Order And Pay For Your Coffee Directly From The Starbucks App, by Harish Jonnalagadda, iMore


Apple's Software King Eddy Cue On Streaming Battles, The iPhone 6s And Getting Rid Of Roaming Charges, by Jimi Famurewa, Evening Standard

He taps his phone and makes an offhand comment about “trying not to get roaming charges” while in London which, I note, proves how insanely expensive phone calls and data can be abroad. “It’s sad, it’s another problem,” says Cue. “We’re trying to fix it and we’re making a little bit of progress but you’ve got to convince a lot of people.” It sounds like an impossible task. But that, you would imagine, is where the famous flair will come in.

Practices At New Apple Building Draw Ire Of Union, Contractor, by J.K. Dineen, San Francisco Chronicle

But while the $50 million project, designed by the prestigious British firm Foster + Partners, has been touted as one of the most important additions to Union Square’s retail scene in decades, local building trades groups and contractors on the job say the world’s largest tech company has violated labor agreements and owes millions of dollars for work that was completed months ago.

Is Busking On The NYC Subway More Lucrative Than Streaming On Spotify?, by Charles Shafaieh, Hopes & Fears

While these numbers represent average intake, the variables that influence the generosity of New Yorkers and tourists are infinite. Ruiz observes that his monetary success is often related to the general state of the economy; the city’s terror threat level can influence behavior too. Tara Hack, a singer and songwriter, notes that what she earns in any given session is contingent on “luck, the volume of people, and the mindset of the performer.” As far as she can tell, “there’s really no rhyme or reason to cash flow.”

Security Matters

Security breaches are why I always supply false information about myself and use a stolen credit card for purchases.

— Glenn Fleishman (@GlennF) October 1, 2015

Thanks for reading.