The Stealthy-And-Anonymous Edition Saturday, August 12, 2017

In China, Facebook Tests The Waters With A Stealth App, by Paul Mozur, New York Times

Facebook approved the May debut of a photo-sharing app, called Colorful Balloons, in China, according to a person with knowledge of the company’s plans, who declined to be named because the information is politically sensitive. The app, which has not previously been reported, shares the look, function and feel of Facebook’s Moments app. It was released through a separate local company and without any hint that the social network is affiliated with it.

The stealthy and anonymous release of an app by a major foreign technology company in China is unprecedented. It shows the desperation — and frustration — of global tech companies as they try to break into the world’s largest online market. It also underscores the lengths they are willing to go, and their increasing acceptance of the idea that standards for operating in China are different from elsewhere.


Hands On: Find Anything Fast On Your Mac With The Atlas Recall App And Service, by Mike Wuerthele, AppleInsider

Atlas Recall is a Mac app with an iPhone companion that you leave running all the time. While Spotlight indexes your hard disk, Atlas Recall instead watches all you do and takes notes.

Yes, There's Now An App With The Sole Purpose Of Showing You Dank Memes, by Molly Sequin, Mashable

The app apparently uses machine learning to crawl your Facebook activity to determine what memes it thinks you want to see. It also surfaces different trends based on your activity within the app.

Twitch Desktop App Is Finally Out, Powerful And Cluttered, by JC Torres, Slashgear

So why bother with a desktop app when you can do everything from a more universal browser anyway? Well, for one, there’s the simple fact that, being a native desktop application, the Twitch desktop has better performance and more OS integration, like minimizing to the system tray or even launching when you startup your computer.


The Internet Archive Brings Back Hypercard, by John Voorhees, MacStories

Today is the 30th anniversary of the introduction of Hypercard, a system for building interactive media. Hypercard featured database features, form-based layouts, and a programming language called HyperTalk, which made it a powerful and flexible tool that had a loyal following. To mark the occasion, the Internet Archive has built on its previous Macintosh emulation project to bring Hypercard back through emulation.

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By the time I started using a Mac, Hypercard was not there anymore. Instead, my first programming tools on the Mac was Codewarrior. (I never did touch MPW.)


Thanks for reading.