The Design-Ethicist Edition Monday, May 23, 2016

How Technology Hijacks People’s Minds, by Tristan Harris, Medium

I’m an expert on how technology hijacks our psychological vulnerabilities. That’s why I spent the last three years as Google’s Design Ethicist caring about how to design things in a way that defends a billion people’s minds from getting hijacked.

When using technology, we often focus optimistically on all the things it does for us. But I want you to show you where it might do the opposite.

Where does technology exploit our minds’ weaknesses?

Future Of Personal Computing

How British Airways Is Using The iPad To Modernise Air Travel, by Thomas McMullan, Alphr

As an airline, how do you modernise? How do you go about improving processes that have been in place since the 1980s? How do you give your passengers a sense that they are in control of their flight, when the contemporary demands of air travel mean they must be more coordinated than ever before?

The iPad’s Meandering Road To The Future Of Personal Computing, by Jean-Louis Gassée, Monday Note

Apple engineers should have no trouble adding “brawn” to iOS…but this muscular descendent might not be the best fit for iPhones. This raises a question: Will the iOS be forked into iPad and iPhone variants? The resulting OS lineup would be watchOS, iOS for iPhones, iOS for iPads, OS X (or macOS), and let’s not forget tvOS. Yes, they’d be related, but even in the best families, siblings fight.

Apple’s software life could become complicated, with consequences for its culture, its organization, and its agility.

State Offers Laptops As Trade-in For School iPads, by Bonnie Washuk, Lewiston-Auburn Sun Journal

After hearing students and teachers overwhelmingly say iPad computers are used to play games in class, while laptops are better for schoolwork, Auburn and other districts are sending iPads packing and returning to laptops.

The Maine Department of Education and Apple are offering Maine schools a “Refresh” swap offer at no additional cost.

Payment Wave

ANZ, Retailers Mum On Apple Pay Takeup, by Madeleine Heffernan, Sydney Morning Herald

Mike Ebstein, founder of payments consultant MWE Consulting, said Apply Pay was "sexy" but its arrival was less dramatic here than in the US or much of Europe because contactless card payments already accounted for an estimated 70 per cent of all face-to-face card transactions. ​> "It's simply tapping your phone instead of tapping your card," he said. "Having said that, I think it will gain traction. The bottom line is that mobiles and smartphones are ubiquitous, and the younger you are, the more central it is to your lifestyle.

Cashless Britain Advances As Contactless And Debit Cards Thrive, by Patrick Collinson, The Guardian

Britain has passed another milestone on the path to a cashless society, with 2015 the first year that cash was used for fewer than half of all payments by consumers.


Airmail 3 Review, by John Voorhees, MacStories

If you work on both platforms regularly, deal with a lot of email or email accounts, and want to customize your email client to match the way you work, the combination of Airmail 3 for Mac and Airmail 1.1 for iOS is a terrific choice and one to which I am now fully committed.


Tips For Beginning Systems And Software Engineers, by Ilya Sher

From time to time I’m toying with the idea to give a lecture to newcomers in the IT industry (systems or software engineers). Here are some of the points that I would include in it.


A Clever Tweak To How Apples Are Sold Is Making Everyone Eat More Of Them, by Roberto A. Ferdman, Washington Post

Amid decades of stagnant growth, apple distributors have started pushing packaged, pre-sliced apples out into the market. And it has proven to be a pretty successful strategy.

Bottom of the Page

Yes, I prefer to eat sliced apples over whole apples. Call me lazy, but life is short to have to slowly eat around the core. (But I also believe that sliced apples should come with the skin still attached.)

And no, I prefer my bananas to come with the skin attached. I am not that lazy.



I hate apps that hide the clock (and the status bar) in the iPhone, especially now that the status bar can be transparent.


Thanks for reading.