The Skinny-Bundle Edition Friday, July 15, 2016

Eddy Cue On Apple's TV Plans And Why Netflix Isn't A Competitor, by Natalie Jarvey, Hollywood Reporter

"What we're trying to do is build the platform that allows anybody to get content to consumers. If a Time Warner [Cable] or a DirecTV wants to offer a bundle themselves, they should do it through Apple TV and iPad and iPhone. As a matter of fact, I'm not a big fan of the skinny bundle." [...]

"Most people, at the end of the day, end up paying more, not less, for the things they love. With TV content being at an all-time high, why are people asking for less? It has a lot to do with the way it's being provided. If I feel like I'm not getting my money's worth, then I want to pay less and I want less things. But if it were being provided in a rich platform with the capabilities I'm talking about, I don't think people would feel that way. People pay for Netflix as an add-on to TV, and they're happy doing it. And why is that? Because they're happy with what they're getting from Netflix. So the question to ask about skinny bundles is, why are customers not happy?"

Here’s What Apple Really Meant To Say Today About Its Plans To Sell Web Video, by Peter Kafka, Recode

Here’s my translation:

Of course we’d like to sell people a package of TV that would retail for about $30 a month, instead of two or three times that much — that’s what we wanted to launch last fall. And maybe we will, one day.

But we can’t get it now, because even though the TV guys are right at the edge of a cliff, they don’t see it, or won’t accept it. . Which means our skinny bundle won’t be skinny after all.

Art & Craft

Who's Using The iPad Pro At Work? Tattoo Artists, by Mark Sullivan, Fast Company

For Robinson and others in the tattoo trade, the iPad has become a central workspace for the artist and the client. Artists use it to rough out designs both during and after the first in-person meeting with the client.

"[The iPad] has allowed me to draw my sketches directly onto an image of the body part that would be tattooed upon," says Delaware-based artist Fred Giovannitti. Robinson says that base body image is sometimes emailed from the client, and sometimes taken by the artist in the studio at the first meeting.

For Book Lovers

'Amazon Without Amazon': One-hour Book Delivery Service Launched, by Alison Flood, The Guardian

At Ink@84, an independent bookshop in Highbury, north London, an order pinged in on Thursday morning for Jared Diamond’s Guns, Germs and Steel. The Pulitzer prize-winning bestseller was then to be delivered to a nearby customer within 60 minutes – by NearSt, a new platform that is offering one-hour delivery for books across London, as well as the facility to browse your local shops with your phone.

Almost 40 bookshops are now on NearSt’s newly-launched platform, which allows customers in London to enter their postcode and the name of the book they’re looking for on the site or app. They can then order the book for instant collection from a local store, or have it speedily delivered. Entering Joe Hill’s post-apocalyptic thriller The Fireman for my home address in Kilburn, I’m told I can either walk nine minutes to a local shop, Queen’s Park Books, where it will be reserved for me, or have it delivered within the hour.

Can’t Get Through ‘Ulysses’? Digital Help Is On The Way., by J.D. Biersdorfer, New York Times

You don’t like to quit, but need a nudge to wade back into the novel’s overflowing streams of character consciousness, arcane references and shifting structure to follow those people going about life in Dublin on June 16, 1904.

Thankfully, the original 1922 edition is in the public domain and technically diverse artists have taken up the challenge of freshly interpreting “Ulysses” to make it more accessible to a wider audience.

eMusic’s New Owner TriPlay Launches eStories, A New Audiobook Service, by Ingrid Lunden, TechCrunch

eMusic, the veteran digital music company that was acquired in 2015 by Israeli media startup TriPlay, is expanding its horizons. Today the company is launching eStories, an audiobook service that will offer 80,000 titles at a cost of $11.95 per title to use, plus 33 percent off additional purchases.

For Writers

Hands On With Scrivener For iOS, by Six Colors

Scrivener for iOS doesn’t have all the features of its Mac equivalent, which is perhaps unsurprising given that this is version 1.0 of the app. But I’m surprised at how much the iOS version does contain. Users of Scrivener will not be left feeling that they’re purchased a rudimentary shell with file-format compatibility with their desktop writing tool; this is absolutely Scrivener, with a whole lot of complexity hidden behind gestures and buttons.

Review: Scrivener For iOS App Is Finally Out Next Week, And It’s Worth The Wait, by Ben Lovejoy, 9to5Mac

I’m just delighted to have it on my iPad after all this time. For the first couple of days, just seeing the Scrivener icon on my Home screen made me smile, and I’ve used it far more than I expected to.

Cache Invalidation, Naming Things, And Off-By-One Errors

The Names Of Things, by Erica Sadun

A big naming challenge derives from what do you call the thing that stores a value. The Swift Programming Language has this to say: “Use let to make a constant and var to make a variable”, which is not at all helpful because you end up saying “Declare a variable or constant”, “use the variable or constant as a parameter to the function”, etc, etc.

While constants and variables are “bound symbols”, “value bindings”, or just “bindings”, those are hard names to use in writing. “Create a value binding of 5” doesn’t communicate the way “create a new variable or constant and set its value to 5” does.

How (Not) To Write An iOS SDK, by Conrad Kramer,

Many of you might be thinking that writing an iOS SDK is pretty simple: you just put some code in a project, then compile it. However, there’re a lot of small nuances that many end up getting wrong, so that’s why I have “not” in the title; I’m going to go through a long list of things you should do and should not do when building an iOS SDK.


How-To: Understand The Wireless Diagnostics App On Your Mac To Analyze And Improve Your Wi-Fi Network, by Benjamin Mayo, 9to5Mac

Follow along below for a walkthrough of all the screens in Wireless Diagnostics that can help you analyze your Wi-Fi network and find any weak spots. It can be daunting to see so many stats at once but in reality you are only interested in a couple of numbers. We’ll explain what’s important.

Razer Made A Mechanical Keyboard For The iPad Pro, by Vlad Savov, The Verge

This is the first mechanical keyboard created especially for the iPad, and it's to Razer's engineering credit that the company has managed to shrink the requisite components down to a size where it can serve as a reasonably thick cover case as well.

FileSalvage For Mac OS X Can Be A Life-saver In Recovering Deleted Files, by Aaron Lee, Apple World Today

If you've ever had files that were accidentally deleted, became unreadable due to media faults, or which you stored on a drive before it was re-initialized/formatted, you could use FileSalvage from SubRosaSoft.

Landed: Arrivals Made Easy – A New Arrival App By Triposo, by Appolicious

Landed is an app designed with convenience in mind. When a traveler lands in a new destination, all they need to do is launch the app toget all the arrival information they need. The app shows travelers how to get to the city center, displays currency conversion rates, offers tips on where to purchase a SIM card, shows up-to-date weather information, suggests local phrases and even provides last-minute hotel deals in all major cities.


The Noise At The Bottom Of The Universe, by George Musser, Nautilus

To a physicist, perfect quiet is the ultimate noise. Silence your cellphone, still your thoughts, and muffle every kind of vibration, and you would still be left with quantum noise. It represents an indeterminacy deep within nature, bursts of static and inexplicable motions that cannot be gotten rid of, or made sense of. It seems devoid of meaning.

10 Predictions About The Future That Should Scare The Hell Out Of You, by George Dvorsky, Gizmodo

The future looks bright, except when it doesn’t. Here are 10 exceptionally regrettable developments we can expect in the coming decades.

Bottom of the Page

Nobody believes Apple when it says it only has limited ambitions for television.

Is this the opposite of FUD?


Thanks for reading.