The Purist-Approach Edition Saturday, November 10, 2018

As Laptop Replacements, The iPad Pro And Surface Pro Are Worlds Apart, by Ross Rubin, Fast Company

But why saddle the PC of the future, which will surely take on new kinds of applications, with the paradigms of the past? Apple’s purist approach leaves open the possibility that a new class of apps at the intersection of advanced processing and touch could materialize. Augmented reality may be one example, at least until Apple drops the other shoe on a device optimized for such experiences, but it will need time to mature into a primary use case.

That said, the long-term incentive for at least Mac developers to adapt the full power of their apps for the iPad seems clear. The level of mastery Apple has achieved in silicon–combined with the emerging ability to bring iOS apps to the Mac–points to a future where the Mac could more or less be an iOS development target that uses a trackpad instead of a touch screen. On the other hand, despite the strong growth in touch-screen PCs since the launch of Windows 8, there still isn’t a great incentive for Windows developers to create great optimized experiences for a tablet.

Blind Veteran Catches Second Wave With A Surfboard And iPhone, by Apple

Longboard surfer Scott Leason waits for his first wave on Mission Beach. Scott Leason is an early riser. By 5:30 a.m., he’s checked his email, social media, the news and the weather. He’s reviewed the day’s surf reports via the Surfline app on his new iPhone XR, prepping for the day’s ride. Before the sun rises on this particular Friday, he’s geared up and ready to go for his session at Mission Bay Aquatic Center in San Diego where he’ll surf Mission Beach.

And he experiences it all without seeing it. Leason is blind.

Apple’s Newest Macs Include Better Built-In Audio Devices, by Paul Kafasis, Rogue Amoeba

On older Macs, the headphone jack and the internal speakers are essentially separate ports on a single output device, and only one of these ports is allowed to be active at a time. Because of this, audio can be sent to either the built-in speakers, or the headphone jack, but not to both. As well, if anything is connected to the headphone jack, the OS shuts off the built-in speaker completely.

With these new Macs, there are actually two distinct output devices. The headphone jack and the internal speakers are separate devices, completely independent from one another.

The E-Commerce Thing

Apple Pumps Up Its Amazon Listings With iPhones, iPads And More, by Ben Fox Rubin, CNET

The world's largest e-commerce company said Friday it will soon start selling more Apple products directly and have access to Apple's latest devices, including the new iPad Pro, iPhone XR and XS, and Apple Watch Series 4, as well as Apple's lineup of Beats headphones. The deal encompasses the US, UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Japan and India, with the new products will hit Amazon sites in the coming weeks.

Amazon Is Kicking All Unauthorized Apple Refurbishers Off Amazon Marketplace, by Jason Koebler, Motherboard

John Bumstead is a computer refurbisher who, every year, saves thousands of laptops from the shredder. He buys MacBooks en masse from electronics recyclers, fixes them, then sells them on Amazon Marketplace or wholesales them to vendors who do the same.


As the email notes, this is part of a new agreement between two of the largest companies in the world that will allow Amazon to sell new Apple products around the world; in exchange, Amazon agreed to let Apple pick-and-choose who is allowed to sell Apple products on the site.

It’s the latest in Apple’s long-running list of business decisions that allow it to lock down the repair, refurbishment, and end-of-life of its products.


Apple Activates iPhone X Display Module Replacement Program For Touch Issues, by Mikey Campbell, AppleInsider

According to a support document posted to Apple's website, the company said it has identified an issue in which "some" iPhone X displays do not respond to touch, respond intermittently to touch or react without human interaction. Part or all of an affected display might exhibit the aberrant behavior, Apple said.

The problem was traced back to a component that might fail on the display module. Apple did not identify the component, nor did it specify the number of iPhone X devices that are affected by the failure.

Apple Launches Replacement Program For 13-inch MacBook Pro SSDs, Warns Of Data Loss, by Mikey Campbell, AppleInsider

Announced in a support document, the problem is limited to 128GB and 256GB SSDs installed in 13-inch "Function Key" MacBook Pro models sold between June 2017 and June 2018. Other drive configurations are unaffected by the issue.

Broadway Ditches Age-old Processes To Run Shows With iPads, by Samantha Murphy Kelly, CNN

Several shows, including Kinky Boots and Pretty Woman: The Musical, are shifting to a paperless system that packs the script, lyrics, videos, and costume and prop notes, into one spot for the director, crew and cast members.

The productions are leaning on an app from startup ProductionPro, which is already used at companies such as Walt Disney Studios to help produce film and TV shows.


Against Software Development, by Michael Arntzenius

The basic Darwinist tragedy of software engineering is this:

Beautiful code gets rewritten; ugly code survives.


My iPhone Is Trying To Make Me A Better Person. It Won't Work., by Madeleine Davies, the Outline

After updating to iOS 12 I was horrified by the new system Apple had created, supposedly for my convenience. At the end of that week, a screen time report suddenly popped up informing me I “averaged one million hours of screen time last week,” which a more detailed graph explained was two hours less than “normal.” A step counter was reporting on my movement (it’s always done this, but I only recently found out about it) and this is how I learned it’s possible to take negative steps throughout the day. It had also begun monitoring my email app (which is Spark, not even the built-in, native and a banner notification began reminding me to follow up on emails I received weeks ago. Suddenly, I was feeling scolded, which at first I likened it to relentless parenting; Apple is NOT my mom and I am a grown-ass woman who can monitor my steps the old fashioned way, by counting on my fingers.

Amazon's Comixology Has Provoked A Fierce Debate In The Comic-book World, But Creators Say It Could Help Revitalize The Industry, by Travis Clark, Business Insider

Amazon is a media and retail giant, but one industry it has sunk its teeth into that often goes overlooked: comic books.