The We-Know-You're-Lying Edition Friday, June 29, 2018

Things Apple Employees Won't Tell You, by Kelly BryantJun, Reader's Digest

If you’re altering the truth about what happened to the device you brought to the Genius Bar, the folks behind the counter are going to be quick to catch on to you. And they really don’t want to have to call you out on your lies. “Lying is never a good idea at the Apple Store,” advised a former Apple employee named James in an interview with Mental Floss. “We know you’re lying, and we have a lot of control to bend the rules to make things work for you, but if we know you’re lying, we aren’t going to bend the rules.”

That Time I Had Steve Jobs Keynote At Unix Expo, by Chris MacAskill, Cake

At about 7 minutes to showtime, with 4,000 seats ready, people were pushing at the doors. I said something then I've reflected back on 1,000 times that I wish I hadn't: "Steve, just to make sure, you're not demoing Lotus Improv, right? I don't think Lotus would like that."

Steve had been testy and and some people had warned me that right before going on he's wound up and anything could happen. He said something like, "Then you do the demo!" And he left.

Beta Track

iOS 12 Public Beta: What Power Users Love And What's Driving Them Crazy, by Danny Paez, Inverse

If you ever find yourself using AirPlay while your phone is still locked, a new privacy feature will hide the lock screen keypad. This way you won’t inadvertently share your passcode with everyone in the room.

MacOS Mojave: 6 Hidden Features You Can Find In The Public Beta, by Jason Snell, Macworld

One of my favorite features in iOS 11 was that the Dock on my iPad suddenly began showing apps that the system thought I might want to open—generally apps that I had been using recently. Now that feature has come to the Mac.


This App Will Send You Tiny Short Stories Via Push Notification, by Andrew Liptak, Medium

A couple years ago, startup publisher Serial Box launched with an aim to publish stories in a slightly different way: tell a longer story by breaking it up into manageable, shorter stories, written by a team of writers. Now, the publisher is experimenting with a new way to deliver even shorter stories: via push notifications.


Niantic Is Opening Its AR Platform So Others Can Make Games Like Pokémon Go, by Nick Statt, The Verge

Alongside Hanke, other Niantic executives explained how the Real World Engine uses a cutting-edge blend of computer vision, depth detection, and real-time object recognition. Those are all artificial intelligence techniques the company has honed over the years while advancing its core mapping, geolocation, and social features that underpin apps like Pokémon Go.


In the future, Hanke says he wants the Niantic Real World Platform to operate much like Amazon Web Services does for cloud computing. In other words, app makers will be able to tap into the power of its platform from anywhere in the world to develop their own experiences and services that utilize AR technology and tools.

Apple Event Sandboxing In macOS Mojave Lacks Essential APIs, by Felix Schwarz

Apple argues that Apple Events (which AppleScript uses under the hood) can be used to get access to otherwise protected user data in other apps, so the user should be prompted for authorization.

I concur. However, the current implementation turns out to be problematic for many legitimate, privacy-respecting apps in (at least) the automation, accessibility, device management, utility and remote control categories.


Ode To A White Apple MacBook, by Nick Kolakowski, Medium

I also feel like apologizing (now and then, at least) for the discolored keys, until I remember that dirt and oil is the side-effect of a million-odd words written via this machine, over five years. Words written on planes to Tokyo, Havana, Rome, Tulsa, Montreal, Miami, Munich, London, Los Angeles, and points in-between. Words written in the backs of trucks, in the backseats of tiny cars, in trailers and miniature houses and half-constructed mansions jutting over the sides of tropical cliffs.

Why Tech Worker Dissent Is Going Viral, by Nitasha Tiku, Wired

Silicon Valley has a long and secretive history of building hardware and software for the military and law enforcement. In contrast, a recent wave of employee protests against some of those government contracts has been short, fast, and surprisingly public—tearing through corporate campuses, mailing lists, and message boards inside some of the world’s most powerful companies.

The revolt is part of a growing political awakening among some tech employees about the uses of the products they build. What began as concern inside Google about a Pentagon contract to tap the company’s artificial-intelligence smarts was catalyzed by outrage over Trump administration immigration policies. Now, it seems to be spreading quickly.

'Everyone Is Breaking The Law Right Now': GDPR Compliance Efforts Are Falling Short, by Jessica Davies, Digiday

The arrival of the General Data Protection Regulation a month ago led to a flurry of activity, clogging email inboxes and flooding people with tracking consent notices. But experts say much of that activity was for show because much of it fails to render companies compliant with GDPR.

Part of the issue, experts say, is the vague regulation has been interpreted in wildly different ways. GDPR consent-request messages vary wildly across sites. There are default pre-ticked opt-ins, buried options that require users to hunt for them, consent banners with information only available at a further click but no button to reject, and implied consent approaches. Others have used what some industry execs refer to as “nuke buttons,” which let the user reject everything without explaining what they’re rejecting or what they’re agreeing to. Others have simply reskinned cookie-banner messages required under the existing ePrivacy directive.

Bottom of the Page

I am hopeful that UIKit on the Mac will bring about more quality apps on the Mac as well as the iPad.


Thanks for reading.