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  3. <title>Daring Fireball</title>
  4. <subtitle>By John Gruber</subtitle>
  5. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  6. <link rel="self" type="application/atom+xml" href="" />
  7. <id></id>
  9. <updated>2017-04-28T03:27:34Z</updated><rights>Copyright © 2017, John Gruber</rights><entry>
  10. <title>Sheldon Whitehouse on the Politics of Climate Change</title>
  11. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  12. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  13. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  14. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33632</id>
  15. <published>2017-04-27T22:44:14Z</published>
  16. <updated>2017-04-27T22:44:16Z</updated>
  17. <author>
  18. <name>John Gruber</name>
  19. <uri></uri>
  20. </author>
  21. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  22. <p>Terrific 5-minute video from Senator Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island on the politics behind the Republican Party&#8217;s stonewalling on climate change. Watch it and pass it along.</p>
  24. <p>(I&#8217;m surely the millionth person to make this observation, but how great would it be if he were elected president and we had a Whitehouse White House?)</p>
  26. <div>
  27. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘Sheldon Whitehouse on the Politics of Climate Change’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  28. </div>
  30. ]]></content>
  31.  </entry><entry>
  32. <title>Are Trump Voters Ruining America for All of Us?</title>
  33. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  34. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  35. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  36. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33631</id>
  37. <published>2017-04-27T21:52:12Z</published>
  38. <updated>2017-04-28T03:27:34Z</updated>
  39. <author>
  40. <name>John Gruber</name>
  41. <uri></uri>
  42. </author>
  43. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  44. <p>Tom Nichols, in an op-ed for USA Today:</p>
  46. <blockquote>
  47.  <p>There is a serious danger to American democracy in all this. When
  48. voters choose ill-informed grudges and diffuse resentment over the
  49. public good, a republic becomes unsustainable. The temperance and
  50. prudent reasoning required of representative government gets
  51. pushed aside in favor of whatever ignorant idea has seized the
  52. public at that moment. The Washington Post recently changed its
  53. motto to “democracy dies in darkness,” a phrase that is not only
  54. pretentious but inaccurate. More likely, American democracy will
  55. die in dumbness.</p>
  57. <p>Those of us who criticized Trump voters for their angry populism
  58. were often told during and after the election not to condescend to
  59. our fellow citizens, and to respect their choices. This is fair.
  60. In a democracy, every vote counts equally and the president won an
  61. impressive and legitimate electoral victory.</p>
  63. <p>Even so, the unwillingness of so many of his supporters to hold
  64. him to even a minimal standard of accountability means that a
  65. certain amount of condescension from the rest of us is
  66. unavoidable.</p>
  67. </blockquote>
  69. <p>If you say “<em>I voted for Trump because I want to say &#8216;Fuck you&#8217; to everyone &#8212; my life’s in the toilet and I’d like to see the world burn</em>”, OK, I get it. I don&#8217;t like you, but you made the right choice in Trump and I can see why you’re happy so far. But if you&#8217;re pleased with Trump because you think he&#8217;s running an effective administration and is accomplishing the things he promised to accomplish, you&#8217;re as disconnected from reality as he is.</p>
  71. <p>(Also, kudos to Nichols for the rare exception to <a href="">Betteridge&#8217;s Law of Headlines</a>.)</p>
  73. <div>
  74. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘Are Trump Voters Ruining America for All of Us?’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  75. </div>
  77. ]]></content>
  78.  </entry><entry>
  79. <title>Amazon Echo Look — A Camera for Your Dressing Room</title>
  80. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  81. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  82. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  83. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33630</id>
  84. <published>2017-04-27T17:21:06Z</published>
  85. <updated>2017-04-27T17:39:04Z</updated>
  86. <author>
  87. <name>John Gruber</name>
  88. <uri></uri>
  89. </author>
  90. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  91. <p>There are a few fleeting shots of men in Amazon&#8217;s intro video for the Echo Look, but this is clearly envisioned as a product for women. I&#8217;m trying to think of another gadget whose advertising is so heavily skewed toward women, and I&#8217;m coming up blank.</p>
  93. <p>Once you start thinking about the implications of an AI-driven device that can both see and hear you, it becomes obvious just how primitive these devices still are. I want a C-3PO, not a talking camera fixed on my dresser that tells me if my socks and shirt match.</p>
  95. <p>Privacy-wise, this bit seems rather alarming:</p>
  97. <blockquote>
  98.  <p>Motherboard also asked if Echo Look photos, videos, and the data
  99. gleaned from them would be sold to third parties; the company did
  100. not address that question.</p>
  101. </blockquote>
  103. <p>Apple can&#8217;t get into this category fast enough.</p>
  105. <div>
  106. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘Amazon Echo Look &#8212; A Camera for Your Dressing Room’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  107. </div>
  109. ]]></content>
  110.  </entry><entry>
  111. <title>‘Today at Apple’</title>
  112. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  113. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  114. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  115. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33629</id>
  116. <published>2017-04-26T04:45:27Z</published>
  117. <updated>2017-04-26T04:45:30Z</updated>
  118. <author>
  119. <name>John Gruber</name>
  120. <uri></uri>
  121. </author>
  122. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  123. <p>Apple:</p>
  125. <blockquote>
  126.  <p>Apple today announced plans to launch dozens of new educational
  127. sessions next month in all 495 Apple stores ranging in topics from
  128. photo and video to music, coding, art and design and more. The
  129. hands-on sessions, collectively called “Today at Apple,” will be
  130. led by highly-trained team members, and in select cities
  131. world-class artists, photographers and musicians, teaching
  132. sessions from basics and how-to lessons to professional-level
  133. programs.</p>
  134. </blockquote>
  136. <p>I think Apple&#8217;s retail stores are one of the most overlooked / under-estimated advantages in all of technology. They have spaces around the world where people can have interactions with real people, in real life. Not through a screen. Real life. Who else has that? I think taking that to the next level is what this &#8220;Today at Apple&#8221; program is all about.</p>
  138. <div>
  139. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘&#8216;Today at Apple&#8217;’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  140. </div>
  142. ]]></content>
  143.  </entry><entry>
  144. <title>Animated Bézier Curves</title>
  145. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  146. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  147. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  148. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33628</id>
  149. <published>2017-04-26T04:19:24Z</published>
  150. <updated>2017-04-26T04:19:25Z</updated>
  151. <author>
  152. <name>John Gruber</name>
  153. <uri></uri>
  154. </author>
  155. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  156. <p>Very cool web page by Jason Davies that interactively shows how Bézier curves work. </p>
  158. <p>(<a href="">Via Gus Mueller</a>.)</p>
  160. <div>
  161. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘Animated Bézier Curves’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  162. </div>
  164. ]]></content>
  165.  </entry><entry>
  166. <title>Google Rewrites Its Powerful Search Rankings to Bury Fake News</title>
  167. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  168. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  169. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  170. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33627</id>
  171. <published>2017-04-26T03:59:16Z</published>
  172. <updated>2017-04-26T03:59:18Z</updated>
  173. <author>
  174. <name>John Gruber</name>
  175. <uri></uri>
  176. </author>
  177. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  178. <p>Mark Bergen, writing for Bloomberg:</p>
  180. <blockquote>
  181.  <p>The Alphabet Inc. company is making a rare, sweeping change to the
  182. algorithm behind its powerful search engine to demote misleading,
  183. false and offensive articles online. Google is also setting new
  184. rules encouraging its “raters” &#8212; the 10,000-plus staff that
  185. assess search results &#8212; to flag web pages that host hoaxes,
  186. conspiracy theories and what the company calls “low-quality”
  187. content.</p>
  189. <p>The moves follow months after criticism of Google and Facebook
  190. Inc. for hosting misleading information, particular tied to the
  191. 2016 U.S. presidential election. Google executives claimed the
  192. type of web pages categorized in this bucket are relatively
  193. small, which is a reason why the search giant hadn’t addressed
  194. the issue before.</p>
  196. <p>“It was not a large fraction of queries &#8212; only about a quarter
  197. percent of our traffic &#8212; but they were important queries,” said
  198. Ben Gomes, vice president of engineering for Google.</p>
  199. </blockquote>
  201. <p>Good for them. What Gomes said is exactly right &#8212; it may not be many queries, but they are important queries.</p>
  203. <div>
  204. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘Google Rewrites Its Powerful Search Rankings to Bury Fake News’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  205. </div>
  207. ]]></content>
  208.  </entry><entry>
  209. <title>In Response to Guardian’s Irresponsible Reporting on WhatsApp</title>
  210. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  211. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  212. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  213. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33626</id>
  214. <published>2017-04-25T01:35:36Z</published>
  215. <updated>2017-04-25T01:35:39Z</updated>
  216. <author>
  217. <name>John Gruber</name>
  218. <uri></uri>
  219. </author>
  220. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  221. <p>Speaking of The Guardian, it&#8217;s now the last week of April and they <em>still</em> haven&#8217;t issued a retraction of their grievously irresponsible story alleging a &#8220;backdoor&#8221; in WhatsApp from January. Zeynep Tufekci, in an open letter signed by dozens of security/cryptography experts:</p>
  223. <blockquote>
  224.  <p>Unfortunately, your
  225. <a href="">story</a>
  226. was the equivalent of putting “VACCINES KILL PEOPLE” in a blaring
  227. headline over a poorly contextualized piece. While it is true that
  228. in a few cases, vaccines kill people through rare and unfortunate
  229. side effects, they also save millions of lives.</p>
  231. <p>You would have no problem understanding why “Vaccines Kill People”
  232. would be a problem headline for a story, especially given the
  233. context of anti-vaccination movements. But your series of stories
  234. on WhatsApp does the same disservice and perpetrates a similar
  235. public health threat against secure communications.</p>
  237. <p><em>The behavior described in your article is not a backdoor in
  238. WhatsApp.</em> This is the <a href="">overwhelming consensus</a> of the
  239. cryptography and security community. It is also the collective
  240. opinion of the cryptography professionals whose names appear
  241. below. The behavior you highlight is a measured tradeoff that
  242. poses a remote threat in return for real benefits that help keep
  243. users secure, as we will discuss in a moment. [&#8230;]</p>
  245. <p>Since the publication of this story, we’ve observed and heard from
  246. worried activists, journalists and ordinary people who use
  247. WhatsApp, who tell us that people are switching to SMS and
  248. Facebook Messenger, among other options–many services that are
  249. strictly less secure than WhatsApp.</p>
  250. </blockquote>
  252. <p>The Guardian has stretched this out for three months, so it looks like they think they can run out the clock on it. Shameful &#8212; this should be an everlasting hit to their credibility.</p>
  254. <div>
  255. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘In Response to Guardian’s Irresponsible Reporting on WhatsApp’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  256. </div>
  258. ]]></content>
  259.  </entry><entry>
  260. <title>The Guardian Pulls Out of Facebook’s Instant Articles and Apple News, but Not Google’s AMP</title>
  261. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  262. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  263. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  264. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33625</id>
  265. <published>2017-04-25T01:13:34Z</published>
  266. <updated>2017-04-25T01:18:06Z</updated>
  267. <author>
  268. <name>John Gruber</name>
  269. <uri></uri>
  270. </author>
  271. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  272. <p>Jessica Davies, reporting for Digiday:</p>
  274. <blockquote>
  275.  <p>A Guardian News and Media spokesperson confirmed the removal, and issued the following statement to Digiday: “We have run extensive trials on Facebook Instant Articles and Apple News to assess how they fit with our editorial and commercial objectives. Having evaluated these trials, we have decided to stop publishing in those formats on both platforms. Our primary objective is to bring audiences to the trusted environment of the Guardian to support building deeper relationships with our readers, and growing membership and contributions to fund our world-class journalism.”</p>
  276. </blockquote>
  278. <p>But:</p>
  280. <blockquote>
  281.  <p>Meanwhile the Guardian’s use of Google’s Accelerated Mobile Pages,
  282. the rival to Instant Articles, seems to be going strong. In March
  283. the Guardian presented at AMP Conf, a two-day conference hosted in
  284. New York, where it <a href="">revealed that 60 percent</a> of the
  285. Guardian’s Google-referred mobile traffic was coming via AMP.</p>
  286. </blockquote>
  288. <p>Follow <a href="">that link</a>, though, and it doesn&#8217;t sound like The Guardian is getting much out of AMP:</p>
  290. <blockquote>
  291.  <p>AMP pages are 2 percent more likely to be clicked on and
  292. clickthrough rates on AMP pages to non-AMP pages is 8.6 percent
  293. higher than they are on regular mobile pages, according to Natalia
  294. Baltazar, a developer for the British newspaper, who presented at
  295. AMP Conf, a two-day conference hosted by Google taking place in
  296. New York City March 7-8.</p>
  297. </blockquote>
  299. <div>
  300. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘The Guardian Pulls Out of Facebook’s Instant Articles and Apple News, but Not Google&#8217;s AMP’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  301. </div>
  303. ]]></content>
  304.  </entry><entry>
  305. <title>Wikitribune: An ‘Evidence-Based’ News Site From Jimmy Wales</title>
  306. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  307. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  308. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  309. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33624</id>
  310. <published>2017-04-25T00:18:52Z</published>
  311. <updated>2017-04-25T00:18:54Z</updated>
  312. <author>
  313. <name>John Gruber</name>
  314. <uri></uri>
  315. </author>
  316. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  317. <p>New ad-free news site from Jimmy Wales, with professional journalists and Wikipedia-style volunteers working side-by-side. Terrific idea, and there&#8217;s a great launch video by Sandwich Video and Kirby Ferguson that explains the concept well.</p>
  319. <div>
  320. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘Wikitribune: An &#8216;Evidence-Based&#8217; News Site From Jimmy Wales’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  321. </div>
  323. ]]></content>
  324.  </entry><entry>
  325. <title>Here’s Why Juicero’s Press Is So Expensive</title>
  326. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  327. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  328. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  329. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33623</id>
  330. <published>2017-04-24T23:58:10Z</published>
  331. <updated>2017-04-25T05:30:55Z</updated>
  332. <author>
  333. <name>John Gruber</name>
  334. <uri></uri>
  335. </author>
  336. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  337. <p>Ben Einstein has a nice tear-down of Juicero&#8217;s $399 juicer:</p>
  339. <blockquote>
  340.  <p>Our usual advice to hardware founders is to focus on getting a
  341. product to market to test the core assumptions on actual target
  342. customers, and then iterate. Instead, Juicero spent $120M over two
  343. years to build a complex supply chain and perfectly engineered
  344. product that is too expensive for their target demographic.</p>
  346. <p>Imagine a world where Juicero raised only $10M and built a product
  347. subject to significant constraints. Maybe the Press wouldn’t be so
  348. perfectly engineered but it might have a fewer features and cost a
  349. fraction of the original $699. Or maybe with a more iterative
  350. approach, they would have quickly found that customers vary
  351. greatly in their juice consumption patterns, and would have chosen
  352. a per-pack pricing model rather than one-size-fits-all $35/week
  353. subscription. Suddenly Juicero is incredibly compelling as a
  354. product offering, at least to this consumer.</p>
  355. </blockquote>
  357. <div>
  358. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘Here’s Why Juicero’s Press Is So Expensive’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  359. </div>
  361. ]]></content>
  362.  </entry><entry>
  364.    <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  365. <link rel="shorturl" href="" />
  366. <id>,2017://1.33621</id>
  367. <published>2017-04-24T22:28:32Z</published>
  368. <updated>2017-04-25T01:47:44Z</updated>
  369. <author>
  370. <name>John Gruber</name>
  371. <uri></uri>
  372. </author>
  373. <summary type="html"><![CDATA[<p>These two facts are both true: Apple Watch sales are a rounding error compared to the iPhone, and Apple Watch is a smash hit compared to traditional watches and other wearable devices.</p>
  374. ]]></summary>
  375. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  376. <p>Mike Murphy, writing for Quartz, &#8220;<a href="">Two Years After Its Launch, the Apple Watch Hasn’t Made a Difference at Apple</a>&#8221;:</p>
  378. <blockquote>
  379.  <p>Apple’s biggest launch since the iPad in 2010, the Apple Watch was
  380. expected to be a hit: Given the massive financial success of the
  381. iPhone, it stood to reason that a companion device might be
  382. something customers craved.</p>
  384. <p>Not so much. Apple has never shared hard numbers on how many
  385. wearables it has sold, and doesn’t even break out Watch sales in
  386. its quarterly earnings report. Instead, the device is bundled into
  387. Apple’s “Other products,” which the company says includes, “Apple
  388. TV, Apple Watch, Beats products, iPod and Apple-branded and
  389. third-party accessories.”</p>
  390. </blockquote>
  392. <p>These articles come out like clockwork every 3 months, as Apple&#8217;s earnings report draws near. Apple told us they were not going to report hard numbers on Apple Watch right from the start, six months before it shipped. They want to keep them secret for competitive reasons.</p>
  394. <blockquote>
  395.  <p>Two years and two iterations after its launch, the Apple Watch has
  396. not proven to be as indispensable as the iPhone, or even as
  397. lucrative as the Mac, the iPad, or Apple’s services businesses.
  398. It’s unclear whether an iPhone-like overhaul, or attempts to
  399. market the watch directly to athletes or millennials, will
  400. ultimately make a difference.</p>
  401. </blockquote>
  403. <p>(&#8220;Two years and two iterations after its launch&#8221; &#8212; I don&#8217;t know if that&#8217;s a mistake, if Murphy is counting WatchOS releases, or if he&#8217;s counting Series 1 as a full hardware iteration. But it&#8217;s sloppy writing. Most people would surely agree that there&#8217;s been only one iteration since launch, the Series 2 watches released last September.)</p>
  405. <p>The nut of every &#8220;Apple Watch is a dud&#8221; story is the fact that it&#8217;s clearly not an iPhone-size business. But that can&#8217;t be the only measure of success. The iPhone is the biggest and most successful consumer product in the history of the world. Nothing compares to the smartphone market, and it&#8217;s possible nothing else will in our lifetimes. You and I may never again see a product as profitable as the iPhone &#8212; not just from Apple, but from any company in any industry. Or maybe we will. It&#8217;s a complete unknown.</p>
  407. <p>But if Apple gets it into its head that they should only work on iPhone-sized opportunities, it would paralyze the company. In baseball terms, it&#8217;s fine for Apple to hit a bunch of singles while waiting for their next home run. According to Apple, <a href="">they had more watch sales by revenue in 2015 than any company other than Rolex</a>, and Apple&#8217;s &#8220;Other&#8221; category, which is where Watch sales are accounted for, <a href="">had a near record-breaking holiday quarter</a> three months ago, suggesting strongly that Watch sales were up over the year-ago holiday quarter.</p>
  409. <p>These two facts are both true: Apple Watch sales are a rounding error compared to the iPhone, and Apple Watch is a smash hit compared to traditional watches and other wearable devices.</p>
  413.    ]]></content>
  414.  <title>★ Judging Apple Watch’s Success</title></entry><entry>
  415. <title>CleanEmail</title>
  416. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  417. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  418. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  419. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33620</id>
  420. <published>2017-04-24T20:50:19Z</published>
  421. <updated>2017-04-24T21:29:53Z</updated>
  422. <author>
  423. <name>John Gruber</name>
  424. <uri></uri>
  425. </author>
  426. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  427. <p>If you&#8217;re looking for an alternative to, CleanEmail looks like a good choice:</p>
  429. <blockquote>
  430.  <p>Here at CleanEmail, we are committed to your security and privacy.
  431. In short: we don&#8217;t keep, sell, or analyze your data for the
  432. purposes beyond our public features. Read below for more details.</p>
  433. </blockquote>
  435. <p>They don&#8217;t have to sell your personal email data because they charge an honest price for their service.</p>
  437. <div>
  438. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘CleanEmail’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  439. </div>
  441. ]]></content>
  442.  </entry><entry>
  443. <title>The Gentlemen’s Journal’s Ranking of Bond Cars</title>
  444. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  445. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  446. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  447. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33619</id>
  448. <published>2017-04-24T20:46:23Z</published>
  449. <updated>2017-04-25T02:54:58Z</updated>
  450. <author>
  451. <name>John Gruber</name>
  452. <uri></uri>
  453. </author>
  454. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  455. <p>Not a bad list, but I would move the Toyota 2000GT from <em>You Only Live Twice</em> up to number 3, and I would have put <a href="">the Aston Martin V8 from <em>The Living Daylights</em></a> on the list.</p>
  457. <div>
  458. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘The Gentlemen&#8217;s Journal&#8217;s Ranking of Bond Cars’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  459. </div>
  461. ]]></content>
  462.  </entry><entry>
  464. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  465. <link rel="shorturl" href="" />
  466. <id>,2017:/feeds/sponsors//11.33622</id>
  467. <author>
  468. <name>Daring Fireball Department of Commerce</name>
  469. </author>
  471. <published>2017-04-24T19:42:23-04:00</published>
  472. <updated>2017-04-24T19:42:25-04:00</updated>
  474. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  475. <p>Radical quality clothing. Obsessively sourced raw materials. Designed for performance, durability and movement. Do more and own less. <a href="">WWW.OUTLIER.NYC</a></p>
  477. ]]></content>
  478. <title>[Sponsor] Outlier</title></entry><entry>
  479. <title>One for the Thumbs</title>
  480. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  481. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  482. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  483. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33618</id>
  484. <published>2017-04-24T19:23:25Z</published>
  485. <updated>2017-04-24T19:23:27Z</updated>
  486. <author>
  487. <name>John Gruber</name>
  488. <uri></uri>
  489. </author>
  490. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  491. <p>Jason Snell, writing at Six Colors:</p>
  493. <blockquote>
  494.  <p>Siskel and Ebert had it right. The two critics were forced to
  495. provide star ratings for their newspapers, but when they created
  496. their own TV movie-reviews show, they famously boiled the whole
  497. thing down to thumbs up and thumbs down. And they were critics who
  498. reviewed hundreds of films a year! If it was good enough for them,
  499. it’s good enough for the rest of us &#8212; and for the algorithms fed
  500. by our sentiment.</p>
  501. </blockquote>
  503. <p>&#x1F44D;</p>
  505. <div>
  506. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘One for the Thumbs’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  507. </div>
  509. ]]></content>
  510.  </entry><entry>
  511. <title>Apple Cuts Affiliate Commissions on Apps and In-App Purchases</title>
  512. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  513. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  514. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  515. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33617</id>
  516. <published>2017-04-24T19:08:41Z</published>
  517. <updated>2017-04-25T02:35:12Z</updated>
  518. <author>
  519. <name>John Gruber</name>
  520. <uri></uri>
  521. </author>
  522. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  523. <p>John Voorhees, reporting for MacStories:</p>
  525. <blockquote>
  526.  <p>Today, Apple announced that it is reducing the commissions it pays
  527. on apps and In-App Purchases from 7% to 2.5% effective May 1st.
  528. The iTunes Affiliate Program pays a commission from Apple&#8217;s
  529. portion of the sale of apps and other media when a purchase is
  530. made with a link that contains the affiliate credentials of a
  531. member of the program. Anyone can join, but the Affiliate Program
  532. is used heavily by websites that cover media sold by Apple and app
  533. developers. [&#8230;]</p>
  535. <p>With ad revenue in decline, affiliate commissions are one way that
  536. many websites that write about apps generate revenue, MacStories
  537. included. Many developers also use affiliate links in their apps
  538. and on their websites to supplement their app income. This change
  539. will put additional financial pressure on both groups, which is
  540. why it’s especially unfortunate that the changes are being made on
  541. just one week’s notice.</p>
  542. </blockquote>
  544. <p>Everything about this strikes me as strange, including the mere one week notice and the severity of the cut. It&#8217;s not a small reduction &#8212; it&#8217;s effectively been cut by two thirds. Note too that Apple is only reducing the affiliate commission for apps and in-app purchases &#8212; movies, music, and books are all still at 7 percent.</p>
  546. <p>I ask: Why? I can almost always see logic behind Apple&#8217;s decisions, even when I don&#8217;t agree with them. But not this one.</p>
  548. <p><strong>Update:</strong> I should add that I don&#8217;t have any skin in this decision, personally. I don&#8217;t use affiliate codes when linking to apps here at DF, and I&#8217;m no longer in Amazon&#8217;s affiliate program either. I think we did use affiliate codes at Q Branch to get a commission on links to Vesper, but that&#8217;s over now.</p>
  550. <div>
  551. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘Apple Cuts Affiliate Commissions on Apps and In-App Purchases’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  552. </div>
  554. ]]></content>
  555.  </entry><entry>
  556. <title>‘Heartbreaking’</title>
  557. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  558. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  559. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  560. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33616</id>
  561. <published>2017-04-24T01:55:03Z</published>
  562. <updated>2017-04-24T02:23:16Z</updated>
  563. <author>
  564. <name>John Gruber</name>
  565. <uri></uri>
  566. </author>
  567. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  568. <p> CEO and founder Jojo Hedaya, in a blog post responding to the outcry after <a href="">Mike Isaac of The New York Times revealed</a> that the company does things like sell &#8220;anonymized&#8221; Lyft receipts to Lyft arch-rival Uber:</p>
  570. <blockquote>
  571.  <p>Our users are the heart of our company and service. So it was
  572. heartbreaking to see that some of our users were upset to learn
  573. about how we monetize our free service.</p>
  575. <p>And while we try our best to be open about our business model,
  576. recent customer feedback tells me we weren’t explicit enough.</p>
  577. </blockquote>
  579. <p>Give me a fucking break. They&#8217;re not &#8220;heartbroken&#8221; because their users are upset. They&#8217;re in damage-control mode because they were operating under the radar and now they&#8217;ve been revealed, very publicly, as the shitbags that they are. If you&#8217;ve signed up for, delete your account. They make money by selling your purchase receipts to the highest bidder. That&#8217;s their business.</p>
  581. <p>Unsubstantiated, but <a href="">from a post on Hacker News</a>:</p>
  583. <blockquote>
  584.  <p>I worked for a company that nearly acquired At the
  585. time, which was over three years ago, they had kept a copy of
  586. every single email of yours that you sent or received while a part
  587. of their service. Those emails were kept in a series of poorly
  588. secured S3 buckets. A large part of Slice buying was for
  589. access to those email archives. Specifically, they wanted to look
  590. for keyword trends and for receipts from online purchases.</p>
  591. </blockquote>
  593. <div>
  594. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘&#8216;Heartbreaking&#8217;’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  595. </div>
  597. ]]></content>
  598.  </entry><entry>
  600.    <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  601. <link rel="shorturl" href="" />
  602. <id>,2017://1.33615</id>
  603. <published>2017-04-24T00:54:36Z</published>
  604. <updated>2017-04-24T03:19:56Z</updated>
  605. <author>
  606. <name>John Gruber</name>
  607. <uri></uri>
  608. </author>
  609. <summary type="html"><![CDATA[<p>A lot of people are jumping to the conclusion that Uber was somehow tracking the location of users even after they deleted the Uber app, but the word &#8220;track&#8221; only appears in the article in the context of Kalanick having &#8220;excelled at running track and playing football&#8221; in high school.</p>
  610. ]]></summary>
  611. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  612. <p><a href="">Mike Isaac&#8217;s profile of Uber CEO Travis Kalanick for The New York Times</a> contains an accusation that, on its face, sounds outrageous:</p>
  614. <blockquote>
  615.  <p>For months, Mr. Kalanick had pulled a fast one on Apple by
  616. directing his employees to help camouflage the ride-hailing app
  617. from Apple’s engineers. The reason? So Apple would not find out
  618. that Uber had been secretly identifying and tagging iPhones even
  619. after its app had been deleted and the devices erased &#8212; a fraud
  620. detection maneuver that violated Apple’s privacy guidelines.</p>
  622. <p>But Apple was on to the deception, and when Mr. Kalanick arrived
  623. at the midafternoon meeting sporting his favorite pair of bright
  624. red sneakers and hot-pink socks, Mr. Cook was prepared. “So, I’ve
  625. heard you’ve been breaking some of our rules,” Mr. Cook said in
  626. his calm, Southern tone. Stop the trickery, Mr. Cook then
  627. demanded, or Uber’s app would be kicked out of Apple’s App Store.</p>
  629. <p>For Mr. Kalanick, the moment was fraught with tension. If Uber’s
  630. app was yanked from the App Store, it would lose access to
  631. millions of iPhone customers &#8212; essentially destroying the
  632. ride-hailing company’s business. So Mr. Kalanick acceded.</p>
  633. </blockquote>
  635. <p>&#8220;Secretly identifying and tagging iPhones even after its app had been deleted and the devices erased&#8221; is a rather startling accusation, because it sounds like it should be technically impossible. It&#8217;s also very much unclear what information Uber was able to glean from these &#8220;identified and tagged&#8221; iPhones other than some sort of unique device identifier. Unfortunately, the Times story is very short on details here. But note that the Times is <em>not</em> saying Uber was &#8220;tracking&#8221; these phones. A lot of people are jumping to the conclusion that Uber was somehow tracking the location of users even after they deleted the Uber app, but the word &#8220;track&#8221; only appears in the article in the context of Kalanick having &#8220;excelled at running track and playing football&#8221; in high school.</p>
  637. <p>[<strong>Update:</strong> This explains a lot, regarding the hubbub today over this story. <a href="">When first published, the Times story <em>did</em> use the word &#8220;tracking&#8221;</a>, but a subsequent revision changed that word to &#8220;identifying and tagging&#8221;.]</p>
  639. <p>Reading between the lines, it is possible &#8212; and my gut says quite probable &#8212; that Uber wasn&#8217;t <em>doing</em> anything on these iPhones other than when its app was installed and running on them. From the end of the article:</p>
  641. <blockquote>
  642.  <p>The idea of fooling Apple, the main distributor of Uber’s app,
  643. began in 2014.</p>
  645. <p>At the time, Uber was dealing with widespread account fraud in
  646. places like China, where tricksters bought stolen iPhones that
  647. were erased of their memory and resold. Some Uber drivers there
  648. would then create dozens of fake email addresses to sign up for
  649. new Uber rider accounts attached to each phone, and request rides
  650. from those phones, which they would then accept. Since Uber was
  651. handing out incentives to drivers to take more rides, the drivers
  652. could earn more money this way.</p>
  654. <p>To halt the activity, Uber engineers assigned a persistent
  655. identity to iPhones with a small piece of code, a practice called
  656. “fingerprinting.” Uber could then identify an iPhone and prevent
  657. itself from being fooled even after the device was erased of its
  658. contents.</p>
  660. <p>There was one problem: Fingerprinting iPhones broke Apple’s rules.
  661. Mr. Cook believed that wiping an iPhone should ensure that no
  662. trace of the owner’s identity remained on the device.</p>
  663. </blockquote>
  665. <p>What Isaac is reporting here doesn&#8217;t require any code running on an iPhone other than when the Uber app is itself installed and launched. I&#8217;m speculating here, but it could be something like this:</p>
  667. <ol>
  668. <li><p>The Uber app, while installed, fingerprints the device somehow, and reports the fingerprint home to Uber&#8217;s servers, where it is tied to the user&#8217;s Uber account. (All iPhones have a Unique Device Identifier &#8212; &#8220;UDID&#8221; &#8212; but <a href="">Apple banned third-party apps from accessing it in 2012</a>. Uber either found a way to access UDIDs surreptitiously, or created some other way of uniquely identifying devices even after they&#8217;ve been wiped. It would be good to know exactly what they did, but for the sake of my argument here it doesn&#8217;t matter.)</p></li>
  669. <li><p>The Uber app is deleted from the device and/or device is wiped. At this point, Uber knows the fingerprint for the device, but can’t use it to track the device in any way, <em>and they don’t care</em>, because until someone reinstalls the Uber app on the phone it isn&#8217;t being used to book fraudulent rides.</p></li>
  670. <li><p>The Uber app is reinstalled on the iPhone. When it launches, it does the fingerprint check and phones home again. Uber now knows this is the same iPhone they’ve seen before, because the fingerprint matches. This is the violation of Apple&#8217;s privacy policy.</p></li>
  671. </ol>
  673. <p>But until step 3, when the Uber app is reinstalled, I don&#8217;t think Uber was &#8220;tracking&#8221; the phone in any way. And they didn’t care — the Times says the whole project was designed to counter fraud in China, which required the Uber app to be reinstalled on stolen iPhones.</p>
  675. <p>Repeating from the opening of the article, Isaac wrote:</p>
  677. <blockquote>
  678.  <p>So Apple would not find out that Uber had been secretly
  679. identifying and tagging iPhones even after its app had been
  680. deleted and the devices erased &#8212; a fraud detection maneuver that
  681. violated Apple’s privacy guidelines.</p>
  682. </blockquote>
  684. <p>That <em>sounds</em> like Uber was doing the identifying and &#8220;tagging&#8221; (whatever that is) after the app had been deleted and/or the device wiped, but I think what it might &#8212; <em>might</em> &#8212; actually mean is merely that the identification persisted after the app had been deleted and/or the device wiped. That&#8217;s not supposed to be technically possible &#8212; iOS APIs for things like the UDID and even the MAC address stopped reporting unique identifiers years ago, because they were being abused by privacy invasive ad trackers, analytics packages, and entitled shitbags like Uber. That&#8217;s wrong, and Apple was right to put an end to it, but it&#8217;s far less sensational than the prospect of Uber having been able to identify and &#8220;tag&#8221; an iPhone <em>after</em> the Uber app had been deleted. The latter scenario only seems technically possible if other third-party apps were executing surreptitious code that did this stuff through Uber&#8217;s SDK, or if the Uber app left behind malware outside the app&#8217;s sandbox. I don&#8217;t think that&#8217;s the case, if only because I don&#8217;t think Apple would have hesitated to remove Uber from the App Store if it was infecting iPhones with hidden phone-home malware.</p>
  686. <p>The article does raise some questions:</p>
  688. <ul>
  689. <li><p>What APIs and device info was Uber using to identify iPhones? Are these API loopholes now closed in iOS? If we don&#8217;t learn exactly what Uber was using to identify devices, we cannot know that the technique no longer works. iOS users should be able to feel confident that when they delete an app, all connections between their device and the developer of the app are disconnected, and that when they wipe a device, everything personally identifying has been removed from it.</p></li>
  690. <li><p>What exactly did Apple know about Uber&#8217;s actions in this regard when Tim Cook called Kalanick in for the meeting? Was Apple aware that Uber was specifically keeping a database of unique iPhone identifiers? If so, how?</p></li>
  691. <li><p>What prompted Apple to investigate Uber in this regard? And why did Uber suspect Apple was going to investigate, prompting them to geofence their fingerprinting so it wouldn&#8217;t trigger in Cupertino? (My theory: the Uber app was calling private APIs, and they used the geofence to avoid calling those private APIs while the app was in App Store review, assuming, perhaps incorrectly, that all App Store reviewers work in Cupertino. App Store review can identify apps that call private APIs.)</p></li>
  692. <li><p><strong>Update</strong>: Why didn&#8217;t Apple require Uber to disclose what they’d done as a condition for remaining in the store? Shouldn&#8217;t iPhone users who had Uber installed know about this?</p></li>
  693. </ul>
  695. <p>[<strong>Update 2:</strong> <a href="">Will Strafach examined a 2014 build of the Uber iOS app</a> and found them using private APIs to use IOKit to pull the device serial number from the device registry. There might be more, but this alone is a blatant violation of App Store policy. <a href="">Strafach confirms</a> that the technique Uber was using no longer works in iOS 10.]</p>
  697. <hr />
  699. <p>The article also contains this non-Apple-related tidbit:</p>
  701. <blockquote>
  702.  <p>Uber devoted teams to so-called competitive intelligence,
  703. purchasing data from an analytics service called Slice
  704. Intelligence. Using an email digest service it owns named
  705., Slice collected its customers’ emailed Lyft receipts
  706. from their inboxes and sold the anonymized data to Uber. Uber used
  707. the data as a proxy for the health of Lyft’s business. (Lyft, too,
  708. operates a competitive intelligence team.)</p>
  710. <p>Slice confirmed that it sells anonymized data (meaning that
  711. customers’ names are not attached) based on ride receipts from
  712. Uber and Lyft, but declined to disclose who buys the information.</p>
  713. </blockquote>
  715. <p>This is, needless to say, super shitty. We expect it from Uber. But Slice should be ashamed of themselves. Their <a href=""></a> service is billed as a tool to &#8220;Clean up your inbox&#8221; by identifying subscription emails and allowing you to unsubscribe from them in bulk. It&#8217;s &#8220;free&#8221; in the sense that you don&#8217;t pay them money, but they&#8217;re selling your personal information to companies like Uber. Supposedly that information is anonymized, but wiped iPhones are supposed to be anonymized too, and Uber found at least one route around that. </p>
  719.    ]]></content>
  720.  <title>★ On Uber’s ‘Identifying and Tagging’ of iPhones</title></entry><entry>
  721. <title>Fastly</title>
  722. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  723. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  724. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  725. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33614</id>
  726. <published>2017-04-22T17:22:03Z</published>
  727. <updated>2017-04-22T17:22:05Z</updated>
  728. <author>
  729. <name>John Gruber</name>
  730. <uri></uri>
  731. </author>
  732. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  733. <p>My thanks to Fastly for once again sponsoring the DF RSS feed. Fastly’s content delivery network was built by developers for developers — they speed up sites and applications no matter where your customers are or which devices they use. Fastly integrates seamlessly with your existing stack and workflows, delivering content quickly and securely to your end users while giving you the real-time metrics you need to make better decisions. Fastly customers include open source projects like Python and Ruby, as well as major developer and consumer companies like GitHub, New Relic, and Airbnb.</p>
  735. <p>They even have a special deal for Daring Fireball readers: <a href="">test up to $50 of traffic free of charge</a>.</p>
  737. <div>
  738. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘Fastly’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  739. </div>
  741. ]]></content>
  742.  </entry><entry>
  743. <title>The Talk Show: Apple VP Lisa Jackson</title>
  744. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  745. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  746. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  747. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33610</id>
  748. <published>2017-04-22T03:00:00Z</published>
  749. <updated>2017-04-22T16:24:19Z</updated>
  750. <author>
  751. <name>John Gruber</name>
  752. <uri></uri>
  753. </author>
  754. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  755. <p>Special guest Lisa Jackson — Apple’s vice president of Environment, Policy, and Social Initiatives — joins the show for an Earth Day discussion of the state of Apple’s environmental efforts: climate change, renewable energy, responsible packaging, and Apple’s new goal to create a “closed-loop supply chain”, wherein the company’s products would be manufactured entirely from recycled materials.</p>
  757. <p>Sponsored exclusively by:</p>
  759. <ul>
  760. <li><a href="">Circle With Disney</a>: Disney’s new way for families to manage content and time across devices. Use code <strong>THETALKSHOW</strong> to get free shipping and $10 off.</li>
  761. </ul>
  763. <div>
  764. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘The Talk Show: Apple VP Lisa Jackson’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  765. </div>
  767. ]]></content>
  768.  </entry><entry>
  769. <title>How Apple Won Silicon: Why Galaxy S8 Can’t Go Core-to-Core With iPhone 7</title>
  770. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  771. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  772. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  773. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33613</id>
  774. <published>2017-04-22T02:29:49Z</published>
  775. <updated>2017-04-22T02:29:52Z</updated>
  776. <author>
  777. <name>John Gruber</name>
  778. <uri></uri>
  779. </author>
  780. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  781. <p>Rene Ritchie, writing for iMore:</p>
  783. <blockquote>
  784.  <p>Conversely, Apple&#8217;s silicon team also doesn&#8217;t have to carry the
  785. baggage of competing vendors and devices. For example, Apple A10
  786. doesn&#8217;t have to support Microsoft&#8217;s Direct X. It only and exactly
  787. has to support Apple&#8217;s specific technologies and implementations.</p>
  789. <p>In other words, what iOS wants fast, the A-team can deliver fast.</p>
  790. </blockquote>
  792. <p>I&#8217;ve said it before and will say it again: I&#8217;d prefer the iPhone over Android even if it were Android that had the massive lead in CPU performance. But Apple is literally over a year ahead of the competition &#8212; even the iPhone 6S and SE outperform the S8 in single-threaded performance.</p>
  794. <div>
  795. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘How Apple Won Silicon: Why Galaxy S8 Can&#8217;t Go Core-to-Core With iPhone 7’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  796. </div>
  798. ]]></content>
  799.  </entry><entry>
  800. <title>New Apple Watch NikeLab</title>
  801. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href=";cp=usns_aff_nike_080113_TnL5HPStwNw&amp;site=TnL5HPStwNw-L8V1zDScdosGHw74wdir5A" />
  802. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  803. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  804. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33612</id>
  805. <published>2017-04-22T02:12:49Z</published>
  806. <updated>2017-04-22T22:06:05Z</updated>
  807. <author>
  808. <name>John Gruber</name>
  809. <uri></uri>
  810. </author>
  811. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  812. <p>New limited edition Nike Apple Watch &#8212; space gray watch with a bone-colored watch strap with near-black accents. Looks cool in a Stormtrooper-y way. (I&#8217;m thinking the pin for the watch strap should be space gray too, though, right?)</p>
  814. <p><strong>Update:</strong> <a href="">Yours truly two years ago</a>:</p>
  816. <blockquote>
  817.  <p>New Stormtroopers look like their armor was designed by Nike.</p>
  819. <p>(This is a compliment, it’s a cool look.)</p>
  820. </blockquote>
  822. <div>
  823. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘New Apple Watch NikeLab’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  824. </div>
  826. ]]></content>
  827.  </entry><entry>
  828. <title>Apple’s New Earth Day Videos</title>
  829. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  830. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  831. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  832. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33611</id>
  833. <published>2017-04-22T00:19:46Z</published>
  834. <updated>2017-04-22T15:57:19Z</updated>
  835. <author>
  836. <name>John Gruber</name>
  837. <uri></uri>
  838. </author>
  839. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  840. <p>Lance Ulanoff, writing at Mashable:</p>
  842. <blockquote>
  843.  <p>A typical Apple promotional video has a type: Clean,
  844. dispassionate, slightly British (thanks Jony Ive) and
  845. self-congratulatory. It’s not quirky, whimsical, or funny.</p>
  847. <p>But each of the four short animated stories detailing Apple’s
  848. efforts to become a 100 percent renewable company and released
  849. just a few days before Earth Day, are unlike anything Apple has
  850. produced before.</p>
  852. <p>What’s more interesting is that the audio is 100 percent true and,
  853. taken by itself, not particularly funny. But when combined with
  854. the hand-drawn animation from illustrator James Blagden the
  855. stories become whimsical and even a little odd.</p>
  856. </blockquote>
  858. <p>Apple is hosting versions of all four videos on their home page:</p>
  860. <ul>
  861. <li>&#8220;<a href="">Can We Produce Zero Waste?</a>&#8221;</li>
  862. <li>&#8220;<a href="">Do Solar Farms Feed Yaks?</a>&#8221;</li>
  863. <li>&#8220;<a href="">Can a Building Breathe?</a>&#8221;</li>
  864. <li>&#8220;<a href="">Why Does Apple Make Its Own Sweat?</a>&#8221;</li>
  865. </ul>
  867. <div>
  868. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘Apple’s New Earth Day Videos’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  869. </div>
  871. ]]></content>
  872.  </entry><entry>
  873. <title>Speed Test Between iPhone 7 Plus and Top Android Phones</title>
  874. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  875. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  876. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  877. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33609</id>
  878. <published>2017-04-21T21:34:05Z</published>
  879. <updated>2017-04-21T21:34:07Z</updated>
  880. <author>
  881. <name>John Gruber</name>
  882. <uri></uri>
  883. </author>
  884. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  885. <p>I don&#8217;t know how much these sort of tests matter in terms of real-world experience, but it really is striking how much faster the iPhone is going through the loop the second time. Part of this is iOS being better at memory management than Android, but a big factor is that the A10 is a <em>much</em> faster chip than anything available for Android.</p>
  887. <div>
  888. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘Speed Test Between iPhone 7 Plus and Top Android Phones’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  889. </div>
  891. ]]></content>
  892.  </entry><entry>
  893. <title>A Software Developer’s Mac Pro</title>
  894. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  895. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  896. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  897. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33608</id>
  898. <published>2017-04-19T20:02:36Z</published>
  899. <updated>2017-04-19T20:02:38Z</updated>
  900. <author>
  901. <name>John Gruber</name>
  902. <uri></uri>
  903. </author>
  904. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  905. <p>Justin Williams:</p>
  907. <blockquote>
  908.  <p>I can’t speak to what the other five types of users need, but I
  909. have a pretty good idea of what I’d want as an iOS developer who
  910. uses a Mac every day. Not that anyone in Cupertino is asking me,
  911. but if they did I’d say this is my dream Mac.</p>
  912. </blockquote>
  914. <p>This sounds about right to me.</p>
  916. <div>
  917. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘A Software Developer’s Mac Pro’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  918. </div>
  920. ]]></content>
  921.  </entry><entry>
  922. <title>The New Mac Pro Needs to Be Versatile</title>
  923. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  924. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  925. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  926. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33607</id>
  927. <published>2017-04-19T19:51:45Z</published>
  928. <updated>2017-04-24T01:34:09Z</updated>
  929. <author>
  930. <name>John Gruber</name>
  931. <uri></uri>
  932. </author>
  933. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  934. <p>Marco Arment, examining the wildly-varying needs of Mac Pro customers:</p>
  936. <blockquote>
  937.  <p>Or, to distill the requirements down to a single word:</p>
  939. <p>Versatility.</p>
  941. <p>Just as <a href="">macOS’ versatility allows iOS to remain lightweight</a>, the
  942. ability of the rest of the Mac lineup to be more aggressive,
  943. minimalist, and forward-looking depends on the Mac Pro to cover
  944. everyone whose needs don’t fit into them. The Mac Pro must be the
  945. catch-all at the high end: anytime someone says the iMac or
  946. MacBook Pro isn’t something enough for them, the solution should
  947. be the Mac Pro.</p>
  948. </blockquote>
  950. <p>That link is to my Macworld column from 7 years ago, <a href="">which reads like it was written today</a>:</p>
  952. <blockquote>
  953.  <p>Here’s the short version of the “Mac is doomed” scenario: iOS is
  954. the future, Mac OS X is the past, and Apple is strongly inclined
  955. to abandon the past in the name of the future.</p>
  957. <p>You can’t really argue with that, can you? But the premise that
  958. the end is near for the Mac presupposes quite a bit about the
  959. near-term future of iOS.</p>
  961. <p>[&#8230;]</p>
  963. <p>At typical companies, “legacy” technology is something you figure
  964. out how to carry forward. At Apple, legacy technology is something
  965. you figure out how to get rid of. The question isn’t whether iOS
  966. has a brighter future than the Mac. There is no doubt: it does.
  967. The question is whether the Mac has become “legacy.” Is the Mac
  968. slowing iOS down or in any way holding it back</p>
  969. </blockquote>
  971. <div>
  972. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘The New Mac Pro Needs to Be Versatile’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  973. </div>
  975. ]]></content>
  976.  </entry><entry>
  977. <title>Conservatives Hated an Uppity Negro Golfing President</title>
  978. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  979. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  980. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  981. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33606</id>
  982. <published>2017-04-19T19:40:01Z</published>
  983. <updated>2017-04-19T19:40:03Z</updated>
  984. <author>
  985. <name>John Gruber</name>
  986. <uri></uri>
  987. </author>
  988. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  989. <p>Shaun King, in his column for The New York Daily News:</p>
  991. <blockquote>
  992.  <p>Imagine Michelle Obama demanded to live in a gold-plated penthouse
  993. in the middle of Manhattan, costs be damned, while President Obama
  994. lived in the White House alone. The outrage would be riot-level
  995. fierce. Now, conservatives no longer care.</p>
  996. </blockquote>
  998. <div>
  999. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘Conservatives Hated an Uppity Negro Golfing President’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  1000. </div>
  1002. ]]></content>
  1003.  </entry><entry>
  1004. <title>$400 VC-Backed Juice Machine Is Completely Unnecessary</title>
  1005. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  1006. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  1007. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  1008. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33605</id>
  1009. <published>2017-04-19T18:59:42Z</published>
  1010. <updated>2017-04-19T18:59:44Z</updated>
  1011. <author>
  1012. <name>John Gruber</name>
  1013. <uri></uri>
  1014. </author>
  1015. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  1016. <p>Ellen Huet and Olivia Zaleski, reporting for Bloomberg:</p>
  1018. <blockquote>
  1019.  <p>Doug Evans, the company’s founder, would compare himself with
  1020. Steve Jobs in his pursuit of juicing perfection. He declared that
  1021. his juice press wields four tons of force &#8212; “enough to lift two
  1022. Teslas,” he said. Google’s venture capital arm and other backers
  1023. poured about $120 million into the startup. Juicero sells the
  1024. machine for $400, plus the cost of individual juice packs
  1025. delivered weekly. Tech blogs have dubbed it a “Keurig for juice.”</p>
  1027. <p>But after the product hit the market, some investors were
  1028. surprised to discover a much cheaper alternative: <a href="">You can squeeze
  1029. the Juicero bags with your bare hands.</a> Two backers said the
  1030. final device was bulkier than what was originally pitched and that
  1031. they were puzzled to find that customers could achieve similar
  1032. results without it. Bloomberg performed its own press test,
  1033. pitting a Juicero machine against a reporter’s grip. The
  1034. experiment found that squeezing the bag yields nearly the same
  1035. amount of juice just as quickly &#8212; and in some cases, faster &#8212;
  1036. than using the device.</p>
  1038. <p>Juicero declined to comment.</p>
  1039. </blockquote>
  1041. <p>This is hilarious. Terrific video demonstration too.</p>
  1043. <blockquote>
  1044.  <p>But after the product’s introduction last year, at least two
  1045. Juicero investors were taken aback after finding the packs could
  1046. be squeezed by hand. They also said the machine was much bigger
  1047. than what Evans had proposed.</p>
  1048. </blockquote>
  1050. <p>This says as much about the investors as it does about the company.</p>
  1052. <div>
  1053. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘$400 VC-Backed Juice Machine Is Completely Unnecessary’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  1054. </div>
  1056. ]]></content>
  1057.  </entry><entry>
  1058. <title>Fox News Fires Bill O’Reilly</title>
  1059. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  1060. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  1061. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  1062. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33604</id>
  1063. <published>2017-04-19T18:51:14Z</published>
  1064. <updated>2017-04-19T18:51:15Z</updated>
  1065. <author>
  1066. <name>John Gruber</name>
  1067. <uri></uri>
  1068. </author>
  1069. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  1070. <p>Gabriel Sherman, reporting for New York magazine this morning:</p>
  1072. <blockquote>
  1073.  <p>The Murdochs have decided Bill O’Reilly’s 21-year run at Fox News
  1074. will come to an end. According to sources briefed on the
  1075. discussions, network executives are preparing to announce
  1076. O’Reilly’s departure before he returns from an Italian vacation on
  1077. April 24. Now the big questions are how the exit will look and who
  1078. will replace him.</p>
  1080. <p>Wednesday morning, according to sources, executives are holding
  1081. emergency meetings to discuss how they can sever the relationship
  1082. with the country’s highest-rated cable-news host without causing
  1083. collateral damage to the network. The board of Fox News’ parent
  1084. company, 21st Century Fox, is scheduled to meet on Thursday to
  1085. discuss the matter.</p>
  1086. </blockquote>
  1088. <p><a href="">Official statement from Fox News</a>:</p>
  1090. <blockquote>
  1091.  <p>After a thorough and careful review of the allegations, the
  1092. Company and Bill O’Reilly have agreed that Bill O’Reilly will not
  1093. be returning to the Fox News Channel.</p>
  1094. </blockquote>
  1096. <p>What an ignominious end. His last episode was just 41 minutes long, because so many sponsors had pulled out, and he doesn&#8217;t even get to say goodbye to his audience.</p>
  1098. <div>
  1099. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘Fox News Fires Bill O&#8217;Reilly’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  1100. </div>
  1102. ]]></content>
  1103.  </entry><entry>
  1104. <title>The Talk Show: ‘Forget About Frodo and Sam’</title>
  1105. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  1106. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  1107. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  1108. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33603</id>
  1109. <published>2017-04-19T15:03:12Z</published>
  1110. <updated>2017-04-19T15:03:15Z</updated>
  1111. <author>
  1112. <name>John Gruber</name>
  1113. <uri></uri>
  1114. </author>
  1115. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  1116. <p>That&#8217;s right, another new episode of The Talk Show. Special guest MG Siegler returns to the show. Topics includes Virgin America’s sad fate as a subsidiary of Alaska Airlines, the Touch Bar on the new MacBook Pros, “doing work” on an iPad Pro, Walt Mossberg, the absurd bloat of iOS apps, Clips, Netflix and Amazon’s spending on video, and more.</p>
  1118. <p>Brought to you by these fine sponsors:</p>
  1120. <ul>
  1121. <li><a href="">Squarespace</a>: Make your next move. Use code <strong>gruber</strong> for 10% off your first order.</li>
  1122. <li><a href="">Eero</a>: Finally, Wi-Fi that works.</li>
  1123. <li><a href="">Fracture</a>: Your photos, printed directly on glass. Great gift idea.</li>
  1124. </ul>
  1126. <div>
  1127. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘The Talk Show: &#8216;Forget About Frodo and Sam&#8217;’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  1128. </div>
  1130. ]]></content>
  1131.  </entry><entry>
  1132. <title>Video of Facebook Spaces in Action</title>
  1133. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  1134. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  1135. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  1136. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33602</id>
  1137. <published>2017-04-19T14:50:22Z</published>
  1138. <updated>2017-04-19T15:12:34Z</updated>
  1139. <author>
  1140. <name>John Gruber</name>
  1141. <uri></uri>
  1142. </author>
  1143. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  1144. <p>I&#8217;m calling this an &#8220;emperor has no clothes&#8221; moment. This is a horror show. Disembodied torsos? Virtual selfie sticks? This looks like the way people would socialize in a post-apocalyptic scenario where everyone is quarantined in a bunker to shelter themselves from the zombie virus. It&#8217;s clunky and painfully awkward. </p>
  1146. <p>Who the hell wants to strap on a headset to have a video call with the disembodied Wii-like avatars of their friends when they can just hold up their phones and have a regular video call where they can see their actual friends? This is stupid.</p>
  1148. <div>
  1149. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘Video of Facebook Spaces in Action’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  1150. </div>
  1152. ]]></content>
  1153.  </entry><entry>
  1154. <title>Internet Archive Now Has a Browser-Based Emulator of Classic Mac Hardware</title>
  1155. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  1156. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  1157. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  1158. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33601</id>
  1159. <published>2017-04-18T20:58:25Z</published>
  1160. <updated>2017-04-19T01:49:57Z</updated>
  1161. <author>
  1162. <name>John Gruber</name>
  1163. <uri></uri>
  1164. </author>
  1165. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  1166. <p>Jason Scott:</p>
  1168. <blockquote>
  1169.  <p>After offering in-browser emulation of <a href="">console games</a>, <a href="">arcade
  1170. machines</a>, and a range of <a href="[]=mediatype%3A%22collection%22">other home computers</a>, the Internet
  1171. Archive can now emulate the early models of the Apple Macintosh,
  1172. the black-and-white, mouse driven computer that radically shifted
  1173. the future of home computing in 1984.</p>
  1174. </blockquote>
  1176. <p>This is amazing. HyperCard! ResEdit! Quit commands in their rightful place in the File menu!</p>
  1178. <p>One thing that struck me clicking around for a few minutes: the original Mac team got it wrong with their decision to only keep a menu open while holding down the mouse button. Years later, Apple switched to allowing both click-and-hold and just plain click-and-release to navigate menus. I&#8217;ve long since lost my muscle memory for the old way. The menus keep disappearing on me in this emulator.</p>
  1180. <p>Another thing that struck me: the classic Mac OS was beautiful. So well designed.</p>
  1182. <p><strong>Update:</strong> <a href="">Here&#8217;s Mac Missiles</a>, a pretty good Missile Command clone written in 1985 by some kid named Avie Tevanian. He also wrote <a href="">MacLanding</a>, a Defender clone, but I can&#8217;t get that one to work.</p>
  1184. <div>
  1185. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘Internet Archive Now Has a Browser-Based Emulator of Classic Mac Hardware’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  1186. </div>
  1188. ]]></content>
  1189.  </entry><entry>
  1190. <title>Steve Ballmer Unveils USAFacts</title>
  1191. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  1192. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  1193. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  1194. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33600</id>
  1195. <published>2017-04-18T19:59:30Z</published>
  1196. <updated>2017-04-18T21:41:30Z</updated>
  1197. <author>
  1198. <name>John Gruber</name>
  1199. <uri></uri>
  1200. </author>
  1201. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  1202. <p>Andrew Ross Sorkin, writing for DealBook:</p>
  1204. <blockquote>
  1205.  <p>On Tuesday, Mr. Ballmer plans to make public a database and a
  1206. report that he and a small army of economists, professors and
  1207. other professionals have been assembling as part of a stealth
  1208. start-up over the last three years called
  1209. <a href="">USAFacts</a>. The database is perhaps the
  1210. first nonpartisan effort to create a fully integrated look at
  1211. revenue and spending across federal, state and local governments.</p>
  1213. <p>Want to know how many police officers are employed in various
  1214. parts of the country and compare that against crime rates? Want
  1215. to know how much revenue is brought in from parking tickets and
  1216. the cost to collect? Want to know what percentage of Americans
  1217. suffer from diagnosed depression and how much the government
  1218. spends on it? That’s in there. You can slice the numbers in all
  1219. sorts of ways.</p>
  1220. </blockquote>
  1222. <p>He&#8217;s paid for the whole thing out of pocket:</p>
  1224. <blockquote>
  1225.  <p>With an unlimited budget, he went about hiring a team of
  1226. researchers in Seattle and made a grant to the University of
  1227. Pennsylvania to help his staff put the information together.
  1228. Altogether, he has spent more than $10 million between direct
  1229. funding and grants.</p>
  1231. <p>“Let’s say it costs three, four, five million a year,” he said.
  1232. “I’m happy to fund the damn thing.”</p>
  1233. </blockquote>
  1235. <p>This is just great.</p>
  1237. <div>
  1238. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘Steve Ballmer Unveils USAFacts’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  1239. </div>
  1241. ]]></content>
  1242.  </entry><entry>
  1243. <title>Shocker: Facebook Instant Articles Are a Bad Deal for Publishers</title>
  1244. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  1245. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  1246. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  1247. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33598</id>
  1248. <published>2017-04-18T16:11:10Z</published>
  1249. <updated>2017-04-18T16:11:12Z</updated>
  1250. <author>
  1251. <name>John Gruber</name>
  1252. <uri></uri>
  1253. </author>
  1254. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  1255. <p>Casey Newton, writing for The Verge:</p>
  1257. <blockquote>
  1258.  <p>But across a wide swath of major publishers, results have been
  1259. uniformly weak. &#8220;The revenue in no way backed up the amount of
  1260. time that was being spent on it,&#8221; says Jason Kint, CEO of
  1261. Digital Content Next. DCN is a trade group that represents many
  1262. large publishers, including NBC, The New York Times, Conde Nast,
  1263. ESPN, Slate, Business Insider, and Vox Media. (Vox Media owns
  1264. The Verge.)</p>
  1266. <p>At the end of last year, DCN surveyed its members on the financial
  1267. performance of content published to third-party platforms
  1268. including Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, and Google&#8217;s AMP project.
  1269. It found that not one publisher reported earning more money
  1270. through Instant Articles than they did through their own
  1271. properties. “We make less money on Instant Articles than we do on
  1272. mobile web, which is probably everyone’s experience,” said Bill
  1273. Carey, director of audience development at Slate. And while
  1274. Facebook reported that publishers using Instant Articles saw
  1275. readers consuming 25 percent more content, most DCN members had
  1276. seen no such increase.</p>
  1277. </blockquote>
  1279. <p><a href="">Called it</a>.</p>
  1281. <div>
  1282. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘Shocker: Facebook Instant Articles Are a Bad Deal for Publishers’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  1283. </div>
  1285. ]]></content>
  1286.  </entry><entry>
  1287. <title>Cover Photo for May Issue of Bon Appétit Shot Using iPhone 7 Plus</title>
  1288. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  1289. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  1290. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  1291. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33597</id>
  1292. <published>2017-04-18T16:01:13Z</published>
  1293. <updated>2017-04-18T16:01:14Z</updated>
  1294. <author>
  1295. <name>John Gruber</name>
  1296. <uri></uri>
  1297. </author>
  1298. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  1299. <p>Anthony Ha, writing for TechCrunch:</p>
  1301. <blockquote>
  1302.  <p>Creative Director Alex Grossman said it made sense to finally put
  1303. an iPhone pic out front with the May travel issue, particularly
  1304. given the connection between photography and travel. The cover was
  1305. shot on an iPhone 7 Plus, in the Tlacolula Market of Oaxaca,
  1306. Mexico, and it combines people and food, with a woman showing off
  1307. a strawberry Paleta.</p>
  1309. <p>(Also worth noting: Apple is a Bon Appétit advertiser. In fact, an
  1310. ad on the back cover will highlight the fact that the cover photo
  1311. was taken on an iPhone.)</p>
  1312. </blockquote>
  1314. <div>
  1315. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘Cover Photo for May Issue of Bon Appétit Shot Using iPhone 7 Plus’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  1316. </div>
  1318. ]]></content>
  1319.  </entry><entry>
  1320. <title>Steve Lacy, Musician and Producer Who Prefers Creating Music on His iPhone</title>
  1321. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  1322. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  1323. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  1324. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33596</id>
  1325. <published>2017-04-18T15:46:39Z</published>
  1326. <updated>2017-04-18T15:46:41Z</updated>
  1327. <author>
  1328. <name>John Gruber</name>
  1329. <uri></uri>
  1330. </author>
  1331. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  1332. <p>David Pierce, writing for Wired:</p>
  1334. <blockquote>
  1335.  <p>A few minutes after Steve Lacy arrived at a dingy, weed-clouded
  1336. recording studio in Burbank, the 18-year-old musician flopped down
  1337. in a plush leather chair in the control room. Vince, one of the
  1338. studio’s proprietors, came in to show Lacy how the mixing boards
  1339. and monitors worked. Lacy didn’t care; he was just in it for the
  1340. chair. He picked up his new black-and-white Rickenbacker guitar,
  1341. then reached into his Herschel backpack and yanked out a mess of
  1342. cables. Out of the mess emerged his iRig, an interface adapter
  1343. that connects his guitar directly into his iPhone 6. He shoved it
  1344. into the Lightning port and began tuning his instrument, staring
  1345. at the GarageBand pitch meter through the cracks on the screen of
  1346. his phone. [&#8230;]</p>
  1348. <p>It’s a weird recording setup, but it’s working for Lacy. Last
  1349. year, he was nominated for a Grammy for executive-producing and
  1350. performing on the 2015 funk-R&amp;B-soul album Ego Death, the third
  1351. release from The Internet and Lacy’s first with the band. He’s a
  1352. sought-after producer, featured on albums like J. Cole’s “4 Your
  1353. Eyez Only” and Kendrick Lamar’s new “Damn.” Earlier in 2017, he
  1354. released <a href="">his first solo material</a>, which he’s playing as part
  1355. of the setlist for The Internet’s worldwide tour. (Somewhere in
  1356. there he also graduated high school.) The only connection between
  1357. his many projects? All that music is stored on his iPhone.</p>
  1358. </blockquote>
  1360. <div>
  1361. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘Steve Lacy, Musician and Producer Who Prefers Creating Music on His iPhone’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  1362. </div>
  1364. ]]></content>
  1365.  </entry><entry>
  1366. <title>How Google Ate</title>
  1367. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  1368. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  1369. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  1370. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33595</id>
  1371. <published>2017-04-18T15:28:55Z</published>
  1372. <updated>2017-04-18T15:30:35Z</updated>
  1373. <author>
  1374. <name>John Gruber</name>
  1375. <uri></uri>
  1376. </author>
  1377. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  1378. <p>Adrianne Jeffries, writing for The Outline:</p>
  1380. <blockquote>
  1381.  <p>At the end of it, we just said ‘Look, we’re not comfortable
  1382. with this.’”</p>
  1384. <p>“But then they went ahead and took the data anyway.”</p>
  1386. <p>In February 2016, Google started displaying a Featured Snippet for
  1387. each of the 25,000 celebrities in the CelebrityNetWorth database,
  1388. Warner said. He knew this because he added a few fake listings for
  1389. friends who were not celebrities to see if they would pop up as
  1390. featured answers, and they did.</p>
  1392. <p>“Our traffic immediately crumbled,” Warner said. “Comparing
  1393. January 2016 (a full month where they had not yet scraped our
  1394. content) to January 2017, our traffic is down 65 percent.” Warner
  1395. said he had to lay off half his staff. (Google declined to answer
  1396. specific questions for this story, including whether it was
  1397. shooting itself in the foot by destroying its best sources of
  1398. information.)</p>
  1399. </blockquote>
  1401. <p>That&#8217;s just outright theft, pure and simple. And it&#8217;s foolish &#8212; the only reason the good data from CelebrityNetWorth exists is that the site was able to make enough money to hire a staff of researchers. Now that Warner has had to lay off half his staff, the data is surely going to suffer. Forget about &#8220;Don&#8217;t be evil&#8221;, how about &#8220;Don&#8217;t be stupid&#8221;?</p>
  1403. <div>
  1404. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘How Google Ate’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  1405. </div>
  1407. ]]></content>
  1408.  </entry><entry>
  1409. <title>AirPods Still on a 6-Week Shipping Delay</title>
  1410. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  1411. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  1412. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  1413. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33594</id>
  1414. <published>2017-04-18T14:58:10Z</published>
  1415. <updated>2017-04-18T19:31:42Z</updated>
  1416. <author>
  1417. <name>John Gruber</name>
  1418. <uri></uri>
  1419. </author>
  1420. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  1421. <p>AirPods are, in my opinion, the best new Apple product in years. I forgot to pack them on a recent trip (out to California for the Mac Pro roundtable), and using wired ear buds for a day made me love my AirPods even more.</p>
  1423. <p>But if you order them today, they&#8217;re <em>still</em> on a 6-week shipping delay. They&#8217;re either unexpectedly popular (like last year&#8217;s iPhone SE) or unexpectedly difficult to manufacture (or both).</p>
  1425. <div>
  1426. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘AirPods Still on a 6-Week Shipping Delay’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  1427. </div>
  1429. ]]></content>
  1430.  </entry><entry>
  1431. <title>Proposed Key Path Syntax for Swift</title>
  1432. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  1433. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  1434. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  1435. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33593</id>
  1436. <published>2017-04-18T14:34:55Z</published>
  1437. <updated>2017-04-19T02:03:52Z</updated>
  1438. <author>
  1439. <name>John Gruber</name>
  1440. <uri></uri>
  1441. </author>
  1442. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  1443. <p>David Smith, Michael LeHew, and Joe Groff, explaining why they chose backslash (\) as the syntax for their new key path proposal for Swift:</p>
  1445. <blockquote>
  1446.  <p>During review many different sigils were considered:</p>
  1448. <p><strong>No Sigil:</strong> This matches function type references, but suffers
  1449. from ambiguity with wanting to actually call a type property.
  1450. Having to type <code>let foo: KeyPath&lt;Baz, Bar&gt;</code> while consistent with
  1451. function type references, really is not that great (even for
  1452. function type references).</p>
  1454. <p><strong>Backtick:</strong> Borrowing from Lisp, backtick was what we used in
  1455. initial discussions of this proposal (it was easy to write on a
  1456. white-board), but it was not chosen because it is hard to type in
  1457. Markdown, and comes dangerously close to conflicting with other
  1458. parser intrinsics.</p>
  1459. </blockquote>
  1461. <p>It kind of blows my mind that the ease of typing in Markdown would factor into a syntax decision for Swift. However, I disagree. It is <em>not</em> hard to type a literal backtick in Markdown. <a href="">Here&#8217;s the relevant section of the Markdown syntax documentation</a>.</p>
  1463. <p>In short, to include a literal backtick inside a <code>&lt;code&gt;</code> span, you can just use two backticks as the opening and closing delimiters. This input:</p>
  1465. <pre><code>```Person.friends[0].name``
  1466. </code></pre>
  1468. <p>produces this HTML output:</p>
  1470. <pre><code>&lt;code&gt;`Person.friends[0].name&lt;/code&gt;
  1471. </code></pre>
  1473. <p>For the sake of clarity, you can include a space at the beginning (or end) of the delimited code span, which will be omitted from the output, like this:</p>
  1475. <pre><code>`` `Person.friends[0].name``
  1476. </code></pre>
  1478. <p>Far be it for me to tell the Swift folks what to do, but I think backtick looks far better in the above example than backslash does. To me, backslash in any language should mean &#8220;escape the following character&#8221; and nothing else.</p>
  1480. <div>
  1481. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘Proposed Key Path Syntax for Swift’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  1482. </div>
  1484. ]]></content>
  1485.  </entry><entry>
  1486. <title>Apple’s Achilles Heel</title>
  1487. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  1488. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  1489. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  1490. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33592</id>
  1491. <published>2017-04-17T19:19:45Z</published>
  1492. <updated>2017-04-17T22:24:46Z</updated>
  1493. <author>
  1494. <name>John Gruber</name>
  1495. <uri></uri>
  1496. </author>
  1497. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  1498. <p>Neil Cybart, in his weekly Above Avalon column last week, &#8220;The Mac Is Turning into Apple&#8217;s Achilles Heel&#8221;:</p>
  1500. <blockquote>
  1501.  <p>Apple&#8217;s decision to change course and develop a new Mac Pro has
  1502. received near-universal praise from the company&#8217;s pro community.
  1503. While developing a new Mac Pro is the right decision for Apple to
  1504. make given the current situation, it has become clear that the Mac
  1505. is a major vulnerability in Apple&#8217;s broader product strategy. The
  1506. product that helped save Apple from bankruptcy 20 years ago is now
  1507. turning into a barrier that is preventing Apple from focusing on
  1508. what comes next.</p>
  1509. </blockquote>
  1511. <p>I read this last week and it didn&#8217;t sit right with me at all. But I couldn&#8217;t put my finger on why until this weekend. It&#8217;s actually very simple: I think Cybart&#8217;s entire premise is completely backwards. The Mac is not Apple&#8217;s Achilles heel. The iPhone is. That&#8217;s why the rest of his column doesn&#8217;t make much sense.</p>
  1513. <p>The iPhone hasn&#8217;t suffered because Apple is focused on the Mac. New iPhones come out like clockwork every year. Apple has really gotten it down to a science in recent years. The Mac lineup, however &#8212; and the Mac Pro in particular &#8212; has clearly suffered from a lack of attention. Where did that institutional attention go? Surely much of it went to iPhone.</p>
  1515. <p>I&#8217;m <em>not</em> arguing that it&#8217;s a mistake for Apple to devote more attention to the iPhone than any other product. Smartphones are the greatest opportunity in the history of mass market consumer goods, and <em>also</em> the greatest opportunity in the history of personal computing. The iPhone epitomizes everything Apple stands for. But it&#8217;s a mistake to focus so much attention on the iPhone that other important products suffer.</p>
  1517. <div>
  1518. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘Apple&#8217;s Achilles Heel’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  1519. </div>
  1521. ]]></content>
  1522.  </entry><entry>
  1523. <title>Fastly</title>
  1524. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  1525. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  1526. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  1527. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33591</id>
  1528. <published>2017-04-15T23:26:34Z</published>
  1529. <updated>2017-04-15T23:26:37Z</updated>
  1530. <author>
  1531. <name>John Gruber</name>
  1532. <uri></uri>
  1533. </author>
  1534. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  1535. <p>My thanks to Fastly for sponsoring this week&#8217;s DF RSS feed. Fastly’s content delivery network was built by developers for developers — they speed up sites and applications no matter where your customers are or which devices they use. Fastly integrates seamlessly with your existing stack and workflows, delivering content quickly and securely to your end users while giving you the real-time metrics you need to make better decisions. Fastly customers include open source projects like Python and Ruby, as well as major developer and consumer companies like GitHub, New Relic, and Airbnb.</p>
  1537. <p>Special deal for Daring Fireball readers: <a href="">test up to $50 of traffic for free</a>.</p>
  1539. <div>
  1540. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘Fastly’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  1541. </div>
  1543. ]]></content>
  1544.  </entry><entry>
  1545. <title>Nintendo Discontinues the NES Classic Edition, Even Though It’s So in Demand You Can’t Get One</title>
  1546. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  1547. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  1548. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  1549. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33589</id>
  1550. <published>2017-04-14T22:08:46Z</published>
  1551. <updated>2017-04-14T22:08:47Z</updated>
  1552. <author>
  1553. <name>John Gruber</name>
  1554. <uri></uri>
  1555. </author>
  1556. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  1557. <p>Nintendo:</p>
  1559. <blockquote>
  1560.  <p>Throughout April, [Nintendo of America] territories will receive
  1561. the last shipments of Nintendo Entertainment System: NES Classic
  1562. Edition systems for this year. We encourage anyone interested in
  1563. obtaining this system to check with retail outlets regarding
  1564. availability. We understand that it has been difficult for many
  1565. consumers to find a system, and for that we apologize. We have
  1566. paid close attention to consumer feedback, and we greatly
  1567. appreciate the incredible level of consumer interest and support
  1568. for this product.</p>
  1569. </blockquote>
  1571. <p>This makes no sense to me. I&#8217;ve been waiting to buy one at the regular retail price, but it looks like that&#8217;s never going to happen.</p>
  1573. <div>
  1574. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘Nintendo Discontinues the NES Classic Edition, Even Though It&#8217;s So in Demand You Can&#8217;t Get One’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  1575. </div>
  1577. ]]></content>
  1578.  </entry><entry>
  1579. <title>‘It’s Not What You Would Think’</title>
  1580. <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  1581. <link rel="shorturl" type="text/html" href="" />
  1582. <link rel="related" type="text/html" href="" />
  1583. <id>,2017:/linked//6.33588</id>
  1584. <published>2017-04-14T20:43:24Z</published>
  1585. <updated>2017-04-14T20:43:26Z</updated>
  1586. <author>
  1587. <name>John Gruber</name>
  1588. <uri></uri>
  1589. </author>
  1590. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  1591. <p>From a Wall Street Journal report on Trump&#8217;s meeting last week with President Xi Jinping of China:</p>
  1593. <blockquote>
  1594.  <p>He said they hit it off during their first discussion. Mr. Trump
  1595. said he told his Chinese counterpart he believed Beijing could
  1596. easily take care of the North Korea threat. Mr. Xi then explained
  1597. the history of China and Korea, Mr. Trump said.</p>
  1599. <p>“After listening for 10 minutes, I realized it’s not so easy,” Mr.
  1600. Trump recounted. “I felt pretty strongly that they had a
  1601. tremendous power” over North Korea,” he said. “But it’s not what
  1602. you would think.”</p>
  1603. </blockquote>
  1605. <p>What&#8217;s striking about this isn&#8217;t that Trump was completely ignorant about China&#8217;s relationship with North Korea. That&#8217;s not surprising at all. What&#8217;s striking is that Trump is so &#8212; to borrow <a href="">Josh Marshall&#8217;s phrase</a> &#8212; militantly ignorant that he&#8217;s not embarrassed to admit this. He&#8217;s a laughingstock around the world.</p>
  1607. <div>
  1608. <a  title="Permanent link to ‘&#8216;It&#8217;s Not What You Would Think&#8217;’"  href="">&nbsp;★&nbsp;</a>
  1609. </div>
  1611. ]]></content>
  1612.  </entry><entry>
  1614.    <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  1615. <link rel="shorturl" href="" />
  1616. <id>,2017://1.33579</id>
  1617. <published>2017-04-11T00:15:08Z</published>
  1618. <updated>2017-04-12T03:38:06Z</updated>
  1619. <author>
  1620. <name>John Gruber</name>
  1621. <uri></uri>
  1622. </author>
  1623. <summary type="html"><![CDATA[<p>Instead of getting into the computer business, traditional watch companies should focus on what they&#8217;ve always done: designing and making great mechanical watches &#8212; creating a breath of analog fresh air in an ever-more digitized world.</p>
  1624. ]]></summary>
  1625. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  1626. <p>Jean-Louis Gassée penned a good column a few weeks ago <a href="">on the Swatch Group making their own watch OS</a>:</p>
  1628. <blockquote>
  1629.  <p>Nick Hayek’s father triumphed against Japanese quartz watch makers
  1630. by playing on his own turf. Trying to defeat the established
  1631. smartwatch players by playing their game won’t work. Is there
  1632. something in Swatch Group’s culture that predisposes it to be
  1633. competitive with Google and Apple software engineers?</p>
  1635. <p>Just as Nokia should have embraced Android in 2010, riding on its
  1636. proven combination of Design, Supply Chain, and Carrier
  1637. Distribution prowess to keep a leading role in the smartphone
  1638. revolution, Swatch could use its native &#8212; but circumscribed &#8212;
  1639. cultural and technical skills to create beautiful, fun
  1640. smartwatches … that run on Google’s software. But just like
  1641. Nokia&#8217;s culture and success prevented it from seizing the Android
  1642. moment, similar factors will keep Swatch from being a powerful
  1643. player in the smartwatch world.</p>
  1644. </blockquote>
  1646. <p>I agree. <em>If</em> the Swatch Group wants to make smartwatches, they should almost certainly go with Android Wear, and they&#8217;re almost certainly doomed with their pre-announced homegrown OS. And it&#8217;s crazy that even if they succeed at creating their own OS, that they think it won&#8217;t need frequent updates and bug fixes. That&#8217;s not how computer platforms work, and make no mistake, smartwatches are computer platforms.</p>
  1648. <p>But I think the Swiss watch industry would do well to stick to their mechanical guns. They should leave it to computerized gadgeteers to make smartwatches, and focus on making mechanical watches that stand the test of time (no pun intended). I love computers (duh), but I find mechanical watches to be a source of joy, a bulwark against the ever-encroaching computerization of everything.</p>
  1650. <p>The bread and butter for high-end watch companies are aficionados who own multiple watches. Almost no one uses multiple smartwatches. People might have old ones in a drawer, but just as with with phones, it&#8217;s only convenient to have one smartwatch <em>in active use</em> at a time. Apple knows this: that&#8217;s why they made it so easy to swap straps &#8212; multiple looks for variety, but just one watch. For watch fans who actually do want multiple watches <em>and</em> a smartwatch, every watch other than their one smartwatch is likely to be a mechanical.</p>
  1652. <p>I don&#8217;t think the Swiss watch industry has a chance of out-computer-engineering Apple. Instead they should focus on what they&#8217;ve always done: designing and making great mechanical watches &#8212; creating a breath of analog fresh air in an ever-more-digitized world.</p>
  1656.    ]]></content>
  1657.  <title>★ The Swiss Watch Industry Should Double Down on Mechanical Watches</title></entry><entry>
  1659.    <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  1660. <link rel="shorturl" href="" />
  1661. <id>,2017://1.33572</id>
  1662. <published>2017-04-06T19:46:56Z</published>
  1663. <updated>2017-04-06T22:55:22Z</updated>
  1664. <author>
  1665. <name>John Gruber</name>
  1666. <uri></uri>
  1667. </author>
  1668. <summary type="html"><![CDATA[<p>The New York Times has no more reason to describe Mar-a-Lago as &#8220;the Winter White House&#8221; than they do to refer to their own publication as &#8220;the failing New York Times&#8221;.</p>
  1669. ]]></summary>
  1670. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  1671. <p><a href="">From a New York Times report by Alan Wong</a>:</p>
  1673. <blockquote>
  1674.  <p>President Xi Jinping of China is not expected to be strolling the
  1675. manicured fairways of the Trump International Golf Club on
  1676. Thursday, sizing up his approach shot.</p>
  1678. <p>Mr. Xi is known to be an avid soccer fan, bent on transforming
  1679. China into a great power in that egalitarian team sport, but the
  1680. Chinese Communist Party maintains an ideological contempt for golf
  1681. as a rich person’s game.</p>
  1683. <p>That view, among others, places him at odds with President Trump,
  1684. who owns more than a dozen golf courses and whose so-called Winter
  1685. White House, the Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Fla., charges
  1686. more than $200,000 for membership.</p>
  1687. </blockquote>
  1689. <p>Describing Mar-a-Lago as &#8220;the so-called Winter White House&#8221; is pernicious at best, and I would argue it&#8217;s downright outrageous. No news organization, let alone one as prestigious in stature and as fastidious about style and usage as The New York Times, should <em>ever</em> describe Mar-a-Lago as &#8220;the Winter White House&#8221;. Prefacing it by &#8220;so-called&#8221; doesn&#8217;t make it right. So-called by whom? By Trump.</p>
  1691. <p>There is only one White House. It is in Washington D.C., and it is owned by the U.S. federal government. It is sometimes and rightly called &#8220;The People&#8217;s House&#8221;, because we the people own it, and we vote to elect the president who lives and works in it. No one profits financially when a state visit is held at the White House.</p>
  1693. <p>Mar-a-Lago is a private facility owned by Trump himself. When he hosts state visits there, not only does someone personally profit from it, that someone is Trump himself. Using Mar-a-Lago for official state business goes against everything that the actual White House stands for.</p>
  1695. <p>This is no little thing. Describing Mar-a-Lago in a news article as &#8220;the so-called Winter White House&#8221; is normalizing out and out corruption &#8212; Trump&#8217;s shameless profiteering off the presidency.</p>
  1697. <p>If the Times wants to quote Trump using the phrase, so be it. But the description should never be used in news copy. The New York Times has no more reason to describe Mar-a-Lago as &#8220;the Winter White House&#8221; than they do to refer to their own publication as &#8220;the failing New York Times&#8221;.</p>
  1701.    ]]></content>
  1702.  <title>★ ‘So-Called’</title></entry><entry>
  1704.    <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  1705. <link rel="shorturl" href="" />
  1706. <id>,2017://1.33567</id>
  1707. <published>2017-04-04T12:00:18Z</published>
  1708. <updated>2017-04-04T20:42:15Z</updated>
  1709. <author>
  1710. <name>John Gruber</name>
  1711. <uri></uri>
  1712. </author>
  1713. <summary type="html"><![CDATA[<p>Apple is currently hard at work on a &#8220;completely rethought&#8221; Mac Pro, with a modular design that can accommodate high-end CPUs and big honking hot-running GPUs, and which should make it easier for Apple to update with new components on a regular basis. They&#8217;re also working on Apple-branded pro displays to go with them. That&#8217;s the good news.</p>
  1714. ]]></summary>
  1715. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  1716. <p>Let&#8217;s not beat around the bush. I have great news to share:</p>
  1718. <p>Apple is currently hard at work on a &#8220;completely rethought&#8221; Mac Pro, with a modular design that can accommodate high-end CPUs and big honking hot-running GPUs, and which should make it easier for Apple to update with new components on a regular basis. They&#8217;re also working on Apple-branded pro displays to go with them.</p>
  1720. <p>I also have not-so-great news:</p>
  1722. <p>These next-gen Mac Pros and pro displays &#8220;will not ship this year&#8221;. (I hope that means &#8220;next year&#8221;, but all Apple said was &#8220;not this year&#8221;.) In the meantime, Apple is today releasing meager speed-bump updates to the existing Mac Pros. The $2999 model goes from 4 Xeon CPU cores to 6, and from dual AMD G300 GPUs to dual G500 GPUs. The $3999 model goes from 6 CPU cores to 8, and from dual D500 GPUs to dual <del>D800</del> D700 GPUs. Nothing else is changing, including the ports. No USB-C, no Thunderbolt 3 (and so no support for the LG UltraFine 5K display).</p>
  1724. <p>But more good news, too:</p>
  1726. <p>Apple has &#8220;great&#8221; new iMacs in the pipeline, slated for release &#8220;this year&#8221;, including configurations specifically targeted at large segments of the pro market.</p>
  1728. <hr />
  1730. <p>Let&#8217;s say you&#8217;re Apple. You&#8217;re faced with the following problem. Three years ago you launched a radical new lineup of Mac Pros. For multiple reasons, you haven&#8217;t shipped an update to those machines since. At some point you came to the conclusion that the 2013 Mac Pro concept was fundamentally flawed. It was tightly integrated internally, which allowed for some very nice features: it was small and beautiful (a pro machine that demanded placement <em>on</em> your desk, not <em>under</em> your desk) and it could run whisper quietly. But that tight integration made it hard to update regularly. The idea that expansion could be handled almost entirely by external Thunderbolt peripherals sounded good on paper, but hasn&#8217;t panned out in practice. And the GPU design was a bad prediction. Apple bet on a dual-GPU design (multiple smaller GPUs, with &#8220;pro&#8221;-level performance coming from parallel processing) but the industry has gone largely in the other direction (machines with one big GPU).</p>
  1732. <p>And so you decided to completely redesign the Mac Pro. But that new design isn&#8217;t going to ship this year. You&#8217;re committed to your pro users, but a sizable chunk of them are growing ever more restless. They suspect &#8212; in some cases strongly &#8212; that you don&#8217;t care about them anymore. They see the stalled Mac Pro lineup as a sign that Apple no longer cares about them, and they worry deeply that the Mac Pro isn&#8217;t merely waiting for a major update but instead is waiting to be decommissioned.</p>
  1734. <p>What do you do?</p>
  1736. <p>There are really only two options at this point. The first would be to suck it up and wait until the next-generation Mac Pros are ready to be announced, and suffer in silence while more and more people point to the current Mac Pro&#8217;s stagnation as proof that Apple is abandoning the Mac Pro market.</p>
  1738. <p>The second would be to bite the bullet and tell the world what your plans are, even though it&#8217;s your decades-long tradition &#8212; a fundamental part of the company&#8217;s culture &#8212; to let actual shipping products, not promises of future products, tell your story.</p>
  1740. <p>Apple chose the latter.</p>
  1742. <hr />
  1744. <p>We&#8217;re inside a nondescript single-story office building on Apple&#8217;s extended old campus, across De Anza Boulevard from One Infinite Loop. This is Apple&#8217;s Product Realization Lab for Mac hardware, better known, internally, as &#8220;the machine lab&#8221;. This is where they make and refine prototypes for new Mac hardware. We don&#8217;t get to see anything cool. There is no moment where they lift a black cloth and show us prototypes of future hardware. The setting feels chosen simply to set the tone that innovative Mac hardware design &#8212; across the entire Mac lineup &#8212; is not a thing of the past.</p>
  1746. <p>There are only nine people at the table. Phil Schiller, Craig Federighi, and John Ternus (vice president, hardware engineering &#8212; in charge of Mac hardware) are there to speak for Apple. Bill Evans from Apple PR is there to set the ground rules and run the clock. (We had 90 minutes.) The other five are writers who were invited for what was billed as &#8220;a small roundtable discussion about the Mac&#8221;: <a href="">Matthew Panzarino</a>, <a href="">Lance Ulanoff</a>, <a href="">Ina Fried</a>, <a href="">John Paczkowski</a>, and yours truly.</p>
  1748. <p>The discussion is on the record.</p>
  1750. <p>Here&#8217;s how Schiller broke the news on Mac Pro. It&#8217;s worth quoting him at length:</p>
  1752. <blockquote>
  1753.  <p>With regards to the Mac Pro, we are in the process of what we call
  1754. &#8220;completely rethinking the Mac Pro&#8221;. We&#8217;re working on it. We have
  1755. a team working hard on it right now, and we want to architect it
  1756. so that we can keep it fresh with regular improvements, and we&#8217;re
  1757. committed to making it our highest-end, high-throughput desktop
  1758. system, designed for our demanding pro customers.</p>
  1760. <p>As part of doing a new Mac Pro &#8212; it is, by definition, a
  1761. modular system &#8212; we will be doing a pro display as well. Now
  1762. you won&#8217;t see any of those products this year; we&#8217;re in the
  1763. process of that. We think it&#8217;s really important to create
  1764. something great for our pro customers who want a Mac Pro modular
  1765. system, and that&#8217;ll take longer than this year to do.</p>
  1767. <p>In the interim, we know there are a number of customers who
  1768. continue to buy our [current Mac Pros]. To be clear, our current
  1769. Mac Pro has met the needs of some of our customers, and we know
  1770. clearly not <em>all</em> of our customers. None of this is black and
  1771. white, it&#8217;s a wide variety of customers. Some… it&#8217;s the kind of
  1772. system they wanted; others, it was not.</p>
  1774. <p>In the meantime, we&#8217;re going to update the configs to make it
  1775. faster and better for their dollar. This is not a new model, not a
  1776. new design, we&#8217;re just going to update the configs. We&#8217;re doing
  1777. that this week. We can give you the specifics on that.</p>
  1779. <p>The CPUs, we&#8217;re moving them down the line. The GPUs, down the
  1780. line, to get more performance per dollar for customers who DO need
  1781. to continue to buy them on the interim until we get to a newly
  1782. architected system.</p>
  1783. </blockquote>
  1785. <p>In an ideal world, yes, these next-gen Mac Pros (and new displays) would be shipping soon. In fact, if we&#8217;re going to say <em>ideal</em>, they&#8217;d already be shipping. But make no mistake, this is very good news for anyone who cares about the Mac Pro. Those of us with an ear to the ground knew that there were no major changes to the Mac Pro shipping soon. That meant one of two things: next-gen Mac Pros were a ways off, or Apple was abandoning the Mac Pro market.</p>
  1787. <p>Given that, this is very good news for serious Mac users. Even for serious Mac users who don&#8217;t buy Mac Pro hardware, this is good news because it&#8217;s a sign of Apple&#8217;s commitment to pro Mac <em>software</em>. There is no reason for Apple to commit itself to a new modular Mac Pro unless they&#8217;re also committed to what makes the Mac the Mac in software.</p>
  1789. <p>Some stats and facts Apple shared with us during the discussion:</p>
  1791. <ul>
  1792. <li><p>Apple&#8217;s research shows that 15 percent of all Mac users use at least one &#8220;pro&#8221; app frequently. These are apps for things like music creation, video editing, graphic design, and software development. Basically, apps that are performance intensive. An additional 15 percent of Mac users use pro apps less frequently but at least a few times per month. That 30 percent of the overall Mac user base is what Apple considers the &#8220;pro&#8221; market.</p></li>
  1793. <li><p>Overall, the split between notebooks and desktops in Mac sales is roughly 80/20. (Personally, I&#8217;m a little surprised desktops account for even 20 percent of sales. I would have guessed 85/15, and wouldn&#8217;t have been surprised to hear 90/10.)</p></li>
  1794. <li><p>Even among pro users, notebooks are by far the most popular Macs. In second place are iMacs. The Mac Pro is third. Apple declined to describe the Mac Pro&#8217;s share of all Mac sales any more specifically than &#8220;a single-digit percent&#8221;, but my gut feeling is that the single digit is a lot closer to 1 than it is to 9.</p></li>
  1795. </ul>
  1797. <p>So: only 30 percent of Mac users are in what Apple considers the pro market. Most of those use MacBook Pros (or other MacBooks). Most of those who use desktops use iMacs. None of this is a surprise, really &#8212; and this is exactly why so many users who depend on the Mac Pro have been deeply concerned about its future. For Apple to care about the Mac Pro, it requires Apple to care about a small number of users.</p>
  1799. <p>Regarding iMacs, Schiller also said that new iMacs are in the works, slated for release some time this year (no specifics other than &#8220;this year&#8221;), including &#8220;configurations of iMac specifically with the pro customer in mind and acknowledging that our most popular desktop with pros is an iMac.&#8221;</p>
  1801. <p>Craig Federighi then jumped in, and said:</p>
  1803. <blockquote>
  1804.  <p>That is a pretty incredible evolution that we&#8217;ve seen over the
  1805. last decade. The original iMac, you never would&#8217;ve thought as
  1806. <em>remotely</em> touching pro uses. And now you look at today&#8217;s 5K iMac,
  1807. top configs, it&#8217;s incredibly powerful, and a huge fraction of what
  1808. would&#8217;ve traditionally &#8212; whether it&#8217;s audio editing, video
  1809. editing, graphics, arts and so forth &#8212; that would&#8217;ve previously
  1810. absolutely required the Mac Pros of old, are being well-addressed
  1811. by iMac. But there&#8217;s still even further we can take iMac as a high
  1812. performance, pro system, and we think that form factor can address
  1813. even more of the pro market.</p>
  1814. </blockquote>
  1816. <p>What struck me about this is that Apple was framing a discussion in which the big news &#8212; the whole point, really &#8212; was their pre-announcing a &#8220;completely rethought&#8221; next-generation Mac Pro by emphasizing that most of their pro users use MacBooks and most of the rest use iMacs &#8212; and that they have big plans in store for the pro segment of both of those product lines. It&#8217;s exactly what I would have expected Apple to say if they were breaking the news that the Mac Pro was going away: <em>We&#8217;re dropping the Mac Pro because its time has come and gone &#8212; all but a small percentage of our pro users have their needs met by MacBook Pros and high-end iMacs.</em></p>
  1818. <p>So it might seem curious for Apple to frame the need for an all-new Mac Pro by emphasizing just how many of their pro users don&#8217;t need a Mac Pro. But if you think about it in the context of the current Mac Pro, it makes sense. Those whose needs <em>aren&#8217;t</em> met by MacBook Pros or iMacs are people who need extreme performance. The current Mac Pro &#8212; even putting aside the age of its components &#8212; only met the needs of <em>some</em> of those users. For the rest &#8212; for those who need the fastest Intel CPUs on the market, the biggest and most powerful GPUs, etc. &#8212; the current Mac Pro isn&#8217;t a good fit.</p>
  1820. <p>There were several questions from a few of us trying to peg down <em>when</em> Apple realized it needed to start over and design a new Mac Pro. Apple, unsurprisingly, wouldn&#8217;t budge. But they were forthcoming about the fact that the current Mac Pro isn&#8217;t meeting the needs of all the users who need a Mac Pro. Federighi:</p>
  1822. <blockquote>
  1823.  <p>I think we designed ourselves into a bit of a thermal corner, if
  1824. you will. We designed a system with the kind of
  1825. GPUs that at the time we thought we needed, and that we thought we
  1826. could well serve with a two GPU architecture. That that was the
  1827. thermal limit we needed, or the thermal capacity we needed. But
  1828. workloads didn&#8217;t materialize to fit that as broadly as we hoped.</p>
  1830. <p>Being able to put larger single GPUs required a different system
  1831. architecture and more thermal capacity than that system was
  1832. designed to accommodate. So it became fairly difficult to adjust.
  1833. At the same time, so many of our customers were moving to iMac
  1834. that we saw a path to address many, many more of those that were
  1835. finding themselves limited by a Mac Pro through next generation
  1836. iMac. And really put a lot of our energy behind that.</p>
  1837. </blockquote>
  1839. <p>Schiller:</p>
  1841. <blockquote>
  1842.  <p>As we&#8217;ve said, we made something bold that we thought would be
  1843. great for the majority of our Mac Pro users. And what we
  1844. discovered was that it was great for some and not others. Enough
  1845. so that we need to take another path. One of the good things,
  1846. hopefully, with Apple through the years has been a willingness to
  1847. say when something isn&#8217;t quite what we wanted it to be, didn&#8217;t
  1848. live up to expectations, to not be afraid to admit it and look for
  1849. the next answer.</p>
  1850. </blockquote>
  1852. <p>The word &#8220;mistake&#8221; was not uttered, but this is about as close as we&#8217;re going to get to Apple admitting they miscalculated with the current Mac Pro&#8217;s concept. One word that was uttered, however, was &#8220;sorry&#8221;. Here&#8217;s Schiller, after being asked whether they already had an external design in mind for the next-gen Mac Pros:</p>
  1854. <blockquote>
  1855.  <p>We’re not going to get into exactly what stage we’re in, just that
  1856. we told the team to take the time to do something really great. To
  1857. do something that can be supported for a long time with customers
  1858. with updates and upgrades throughout the years. We’ll take the
  1859. time it takes to do that. The current Mac Pro, as we’ve said a few
  1860. times, was constrained thermally and it restricted our ability to
  1861. upgrade it. And for that, we’re sorry to disappoint customers who
  1862. wanted that, and we’ve asked the team to go and re-architect and
  1863. design something great for the future that those Mac Pro customers
  1864. who want more expandability, more upgradability in the future.
  1865. It’ll meet more of those needs.</p>
  1866. </blockquote>
  1868. <hr />
  1870. <p>My takeaway is that the Mac&#8217;s future is bright. Mac sales were up in 2016, once again outpacing the PC industry as a whole, and the new MacBook Pros are a hit, with sales up &#8220;about 20 percent&#8221; year over year. The Mac is a $25 billion business for Apple annually, and according to the company there are 100 million people in the active Mac user base worldwide.</p>
  1872. <p>Yes, those numbers are all peanuts compared to the iPhone, but <em>everything</em> is peanuts compared to the iPhone.</p>
  1874. <p>Ternus put it plainly: &#8220;Some of our most talented folks are working on [the Mac]. I mean, quite frankly, a lot of this company, if not most of this company, runs on Macs. This is a company full of pro Mac users.&#8221;</p>
  1876. <p>I asked whether Apple is aware of just how many serious Mac users have begun to doubt the company&#8217;s commitment to the Mac in general, and the needs of pro Mac users in particular. Schiller said:</p>
  1878. <blockquote>
  1879.  <p>It’s a reasonable question, and this is why we’re here today,
  1880. specifically, to address that question above all else. We’re
  1881. committed to the Mac, we&#8217;ve got great talent on the Mac, both
  1882. hardware and software, we’ve got great products planned for the
  1883. future, and as far as our horizon line can see, the Mac is a core
  1884. component of the things Apple delivers, including to our pro
  1885. customers.</p>
  1886. </blockquote>
  1888. <p>I think it was simply untenable for Apple to continue to remain silent on the Mac Pro front. No matter how disappointing you consider today&#8217;s speed bump updates to the lineup, they&#8217;re certainly better than no updates at all. But there was no way Apple could release today&#8217;s speed bumps without acknowledging that in and of themselves, these updates do not suggest that Apple is committed to the Mac Pro. In fact, if they had released these speed bumps without any comment about the future of the Mac Pro, people would have reasonably concluded that Apple had lost its goddamned mind.</p>
  1890. <p>Ultimately, actions speak louder than words. But I very much like the words I heard yesterday.</p>
  1892. <hr />
  1894. <p>A few other miscellaneous tidbits from the discussion:</p>
  1896. <ul>
  1897. <li><p>Near the end, John Paczkowski had the presence of mind to ask about the Mac Mini, which hadn&#8217;t been mentioned at all until that point. Schiller: &#8220;On that I&#8217;ll say the Mac Mini is an important product in our lineup and we weren&#8217;t bringing it up because it&#8217;s more of a mix of consumer with <em>some</em> pro use. &#8230; The Mac Mini remains a product in our lineup, but nothing more to say about it today.&#8221;</p></li>
  1898. <li><p>Schiller, on Apple&#8217;s own pro apps: &#8220;I just want to reiterate our strong commitment there, as well. Both with Final Cut Pro X and Logic Pro X, there are teams on those software products that are completely dedicated to delivering great pro software to our customers. No foot off the gas there.&#8221;</p></li>
  1899. <li><p>Federighi: &#8220;I think if you use Xcode downloads as a metric, it&#8217;s possible software developers are actually our largest pro audience. It&#8217;s growing very quickly, it&#8217;s been fantastic.&#8221;</p></li>
  1900. <li><p>Asked whether coming-in-the-future next-gen Mac Pros would be assembled in the U.S. as the current ones are, Schiller said &#8220;We&#8217;re not ready to talk about that yet. Further down the line, we&#8217;d be happy to.&#8221;</p></li>
  1901. <li><p>For examples of the type of software that the current Mac Pro isn&#8217;t well-suited for, Federighi mentioned VR: &#8220;Those can be in VR, those can be in certain kinds of high end cinema production tasks where most of the software out there that’s been written to target those doesn’t know how to balance itself well across multiple GPUs, but can scale across a single large GPU.&#8221;</p></li>
  1902. <li><p>I asked about scripting and automation &#8212; whether Apple still sees scripting and automation as an important part of the pro market. Federighi: &#8220;We think scriptability and automation of the system remain super important.&#8221;</p></li>
  1903. </ul>
  1907.    ]]></content>
  1908.  <title>★ The Mac Pro Lives</title></entry><entry>
  1910.    <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="" />
  1911. <link rel="shorturl" href="" />
  1912. <id>,2017://1.33555</id>
  1913. <published>2017-03-30T03:59:29Z</published>
  1914. <updated>2017-04-02T14:10:05Z</updated>
  1915. <author>
  1916. <name>John Gruber</name>
  1917. <uri></uri>
  1918. </author>
  1919. <summary type="html"><![CDATA[<p>On the end of The Deck.</p>
  1920. ]]></summary>
  1921. <content type="html" xml:base="" xml:lang="en"><![CDATA[
  1922. <p>When I started writing Daring Fireball in 2002, there really weren&#8217;t any established ways for a small independent website to generate money. I mean like literally nothing. I knew, though, that it was what I wanted to do with my life. I wanted to write. But I didn&#8217;t want to write books. I didn&#8217;t want to write for a newspaper or a magazine or someone else&#8217;s website. I wanted to write Daring Fireball.</p>
  1924. <p>I plugged away, writing as much as I could, doing it as a hobby. And I just started trying ways to generate revenue, with one guiding rule: don&#8217;t do anything I&#8217;m not proud of. In 2003 <a href="">I first announced publicly</a> my intention to one day write Daring Fireball full-time, and began a brief experiment with Google AdSense. (Daring Fireball was literally one of the first sites on the web showing ads from Google). It didn&#8217;t work well financially, or look good. In June 2004 I <a href="">started selling t-shirts</a> and a $19/year membership system. That worked better.</p>
  1926. <p>A few months later, <a href="">I started selling my own sponsorships</a>:</p>
  1928. <blockquote>
  1929.  <p>Effective Tuesday evening, I abandoned Google’s AdSense program,
  1930. in favor of selling my own sponsorships. If you’ll take a look at
  1931. the bottom of my sidebar, you’ll see an ad from Daring Fireball’s
  1932. first sponsor: <a href="">Coudal Partners’ Jewelboxing</a>.</p>
  1933. </blockquote>
  1935. <p>Thus began the best business partnership of my life.</p>
  1937. <p>In early 2006, Jim Coudal started The Deck, with Jeffrey Zeldman and 37signals (now Basecamp). <a href="">I joined in early February</a>, making Daring Fireball the fourth site in the network. Andy Baio, Jason Kottke, and The Morning News joined soon thereafter. In March, we had <a href="">a group dinner</a> in Austin during SXSW. I remember a palpable sense of accomplishment. I remember thinking, <em>This is going to work.</em></p>
  1939. <p>A month later <a href="">I announced I was going full-time writing Daring Fireball</a>. It worked.</p>
  1941. <p>Today, 11 years later, <a href="">Jim announced that The Deck is shutting down</a>: &#8220;Things change.&#8221;</p>
  1943. <hr />
  1945. <p>It&#8217;s no coincidence that Jewelboxing was DF&#8217;s first sponsor. I devised my original sponsorship system &#8212; <a href="">a set of principles more than a set of rules</a> &#8212; through commiseration and collaboration with my friend Jim Coudal. We shared the same deep frustration: a sense that there <em>had</em> to be a way to do advertising on the web that didn&#8217;t suck &#8212; something that readers would not mind (and might actually enjoy), provided good results for the advertisers, and generated good money for the publisher.</p>
  1947. <p>Here are just a few of the things that make me proud to have been part of The Deck:</p>
  1949. <ul>
  1950. <li>We never allowed animated ads. (Remember when <em>that</em> was the main problem with online ads?)</li>
  1951. <li>We never allowed user tracking or JavaScript payloads. The Deck respected your <a href="">privacy</a> (and your <a href="">bandwidth</a>).</li>
  1952. <li>We had great sponsors who made great products and services (and designed great looking ads).</li>
  1953. </ul>
  1955. <p>Perhaps most importantly, we never showed more than one ad per page. From the beginning of web advertising, publishers have seemingly been in a race to cram as many ads per page as they can. In print magazines and newspapers, there are ads like that too, but they&#8217;re the low-rent pages in the back of the book. The real money in print comes from the prestigious ads that are exclusive. The back cover. The inside front cover spread. The full page opposite the table of contents. Exclusivity has tremendous value, and most web publishers still haven&#8217;t gotten that. And on the web, an ad doesn&#8217;t have to be big to be exclusive and to occupy valuable real estate.</p>
  1957. <p>I lost count long ago of the readers who wrote to me just to say that they whitelisted The Deck from their ad blockers. Not as a favor to me, but simply because they recognized that The Deck deserved not to be blocked. I love that.</p>
  1959. <p>I love The Deck.</p>
  1961. <hr />
  1963. <p>“<em>I write for my pleasure, but publish for money.</em>” <br />
  1964. <strong>—VLADIMIR NABOKOV</strong></p>
  1966. <p>I&#8217;ve used that quote <a href="">before</a> when writing about the business side of Daring Fireball, but it&#8217;s a good enough quote to use at least once every decade.</p>
  1968. <p><a href="">As Jim wrote today</a>, what ultimately did The Deck in is the shift in advertising dollars to social networks and the rise of mobile:</p>
  1970. <blockquote>
  1971.  <p>In 2014, display advertisers started concentrating on large,
  1972. walled, social networks. The indie “blogosphere” was disappearing.
  1973. Mobile impressions, which produce significantly fewer clicks and
  1974. engagements, began to really dominate the market. Invasive user
  1975. tracking (which we <a href="">refused</a> to do) and all that came with that
  1976. became pervasive, and once again The Deck was back to being a
  1977. pretty good business. By 2015, it was an OK business and, by the
  1978. second half of 2016, the network was beginning to struggle again.</p>
  1979. </blockquote>
  1981. <p><a href="">This graph</a> showing Facebook&#8217;s revenue from 2007 through 2016 tells the story.</p>
  1983. <p>That said, Daring Fireball is doing fine. <a href="">DF RSS feed sponsorships</a> remain strong, and listenership and <a href="">sponsorships for The Talk Show</a> are growing. The Deck was only one leg among several on the DF revenue stool, and in recent years, it had become one of the shorter ones. I have not decided yet how or what to replace The Deck with. I feel certain of only one thing: things <em>have</em> changed, and it&#8217;s been too long since I experimented with new ideas. In terms of aggregate revenue, selling weekly RSS feed sponsorships is the best idea I&#8217;ve ever had &#8212; but it started as a lark, a last-ditch attempt to figure out a way to provide full-content RSS feeds to Google Reader users.<sup id="fnr1-2017-03-29"><a href="#fn1-2017-03-29">1</a></sup> It might be time to try a few larks again.</p>
  1985. <p>What hurts far more than the loss in revenue is the principle of the damn thing. The Deck did it right, and it worked for over a decade. I&#8217;m sure I would&#8217;ve gone full-time writing Daring Fireball sooner or later, but I couldn&#8217;t have done it when I did, in 2006, without The Deck.</p>
  1987. <p>I was chatting with Jim earlier this evening. Someone wrote to him to ask, &#8220;Why didn&#8217;t you sell the network instead of shutting it down?&#8221; Jim&#8217;s answer: &#8220;The Deck was built exclusively on close, personal relationships. I don’t think those are mine to sell.”</p>
  1989. <p>In 11 years, Jim and I never had anything more than a virtual handshake through Messages (née iChat) as a &#8220;contract&#8221;. They say don’t do business with friends. My experience says otherwise &#8212; if you have the right friends.</p>
  1991. <div class="footnotes">
  1992. <hr />
  1993. <ol>
  1994. <li id="fn1-2017-03-29">
  1995. <p>I told the whole story on how this came to be <a href="">in my XOXO talk in 2014</a>.&nbsp;<a href="#fnr1-2017-03-29"  class="footnoteBackLink"  title="Jump back to footnote 1 in the text.">&#x21A9;&#xFE0E;</a></p>
  1996. </li>
  1997. </ol>
  1998. </div>
  2002.    ]]></content>
  2003.  <title>★ The Deck, Adieu</title></entry></feed><!-- THE END -->

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