The So-What Edition Tuesday, August 11, 2020

My Apple Watch Battery Ruined My Perfect 2-Year Activity Streak, by Shawn Blanc, The Sweet Setup

In some ways, it makes me sad that I won’t have those 731 days worth of perfectly completed circles all in a row, the way I did for the first 365 days.

But on the other hand, so what?

What I Learned Going To An Apple Store During The Pandemic, by Damon Beres, Medium

This was my first real experience with what you might call pandemic-surveillance capitalism, a new shopping experience that demands proof of health, or some semblance of it, on top of other information. To browse or get a device serviced, customers of this Apple Store, at least, now need to make an appointment ahead of time—a fair step to control traffic into the store and maintain social distancing. The temperature check is the final requirement of entry. (Apple says it doesn’t record the data from this process.) Again, reasonable.

But the new procedures, unobtrusive and justifiable though they may be, served as a reminder that we’re teetering on the edge of a new era of consumer tracking.

Apple’s Ad Network Has Preferential Access To User Data Vs. Facebook, Google, by John Koetsier, Forbes

In iOS 14, Apple Advertising appears to have a separate settings panel with a default-on setting. Other advertisers and ad networks on iOS, however, need to ask permission every single time.


Google Maps Coming Back To Apple Watch, Now Supports CarPlay Dashboard, by Abner Li, 9to5Google

With CarPlay Dashboard, you can have turn-by-turn navigation appear alongside audio controls (music, podcasts, audiobooks, etc.) and calendar notifications.

Parallels 16 Is Now Available With 20% Faster DirectX 11, Multi-touch Gestures, And More, by Bradley Chambers, 9to5Mac

The most important aspect of Parallels 16 is that it is ready for macOS Big Sur host and guest when macOS Big Sur is released to the public this fall. One of the key reasons to upgrade a virtualization application each year is to maintain the highest level of compatibility with the latest versions of macOS.


20 Macs For 2020: #19 – PowerBook Duo, by Jason Snell, Six Colors

The Duo tried to provide the best of both worlds, with a light laptop that could inherit the traits of a desktop Mac when it was sucked into its little plastic house.

iOS 14, macOS Big Sur Redirect News+ Publisher Links, by Anthony Ha, TechCrunch

So this seems like it should significantly improve the reader experience, even if it might be a little disconcerting at first. And it only applies to News+ subscribers, who are opted-in but will have the option to turn off the “Open Web Links in News” feature in their News settings.

But as Haile noted, publishers may be less excited about the change: “Any strategic rationale that Apple News+ represents a separate channel/audience is now gone. This directly cannibalizes a publishers’ core subscription audience.”

Apple Is In The Eye Of A Hurricane (US-China Tech War), by Om Malik

Start doing the math — Apple’s China misery becomes a problem for many individuals whose 401k and retirement nest eggs are tied to Apple. As noted earlier, Apple and the stock market are intertwined. Apple’s outsized presence in the market, and by extension index funds and ETFs means that it will have an outside impact on the stock market and that will echo across other stocks as well. And that means other technology stocks — many who have defied gravity for months.

What seems like an arcane battle over TikTok and WeChat, will become an American problem.

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Am I getting old? Just today, I've had two incidents where my mouse-pointing skill was less than accurate, and I double-clicked on the adjacent thing rather than the intended target.


Thanks for reading.