The Talk Show

282: ‘Everybody Is an Expert’ With Joanna Stern


00:00:00   - Well, good news for you is my mic is like all set up

00:00:02   and I know how to use a external mic right now very well.

00:00:06   'Cause that's my whole life.

00:00:07   - It is everybody's life.

00:00:09   I feel like everybody is becoming an expert.

00:00:14   - My whole setup is like,

00:00:16   usually when I podcast from YouTube,

00:00:17   it takes like 15 minutes to get all set and everything.

00:00:20   And I'm like, nope, got it.

00:00:21   All ready to sync the audio and GarageBand.

00:00:24   Everything's good.

00:00:28   My friend, Paul Kefasis, runs Rogue Amoeba Software.

00:00:31   They do, he's been on the show before.

00:00:34   They do audio hijack, sound source.

00:00:39   They do a whole bunch of things,

00:00:41   but largely audio related.

00:00:43   And so obviously there's a lot of interest in their software

00:00:45   'cause people are recording audio from calls and stuff.

00:00:48   Anyway, there was a tweet today, I forget who sent it,

00:00:50   but there was a screenshot of Oprah

00:00:53   doing some kind of thing with FaceTime

00:00:55   and she had the audio hijack running on her Mac,

00:00:59   which was exciting for them.

00:01:00   It's Oprah, right?

00:01:01   It's Oprah, you know, but it's so funny

00:01:03   because she's just like us, right?

00:01:05   She's just got a Mac, she's running FaceTime,

00:01:08   and she's got her Mac propped up with like three or four

00:01:12   books to get the webcam up at a reasonable height,

00:01:14   and it's like, Oprah, she's a billionaire, she's Oprah,

00:01:18   and she's just like us, she's using books.

00:01:20   - She's just like us.

00:01:21   - She's using books.

00:01:22   What a good spread for them to do

00:01:25   in People Magazine this week.

00:01:27   The stars, or is it people, or is it Us Weekly

00:01:30   that do it, like the stars, they're just like us.

00:01:32   And they all are holding their iPhones up

00:01:35   with random things around their house,

00:01:37   and they are using lamps to light themselves,

00:01:40   and they are, I don't know, constructing random things

00:01:44   in their house to make their tech work.

00:01:45   - Right, it's, you know, and you know what, it's funny,

00:01:48   like the books thing, it seems like, wow, you're Oprah,

00:01:50   you should be able to have a proper laptop stand

00:01:53   or something, but books are sort of the best for that

00:01:56   because everybody who's smart or has lots of books,

00:02:01   books are very stable, right?

00:02:03   They're perfectly flat, and because you have,

00:02:06   if you just have one shelf full of books to choose from,

00:02:10   if you choose the right number of books,

00:02:12   it's actually very, very adjustable.

00:02:14   Like, if you decide, ah, this is so close,

00:02:18   but I really wish it was like a half an inch higher.

00:02:21   You could just find either like a half inch thick book

00:02:23   or get, you know, swap one book out

00:02:26   for one that's slightly thicker to move it up.

00:02:28   - Books. - Books.

00:02:30   - What a technology, books.

00:02:32   - You cannot do that with a Kindle book.

00:02:34   - No.

00:02:35   And actually books do work.

00:02:37   I've been using some books from my laptop,

00:02:39   but they do not work well for iPhone or iPad

00:02:42   if you don't have the right amount of books

00:02:44   because I find that like either it just falls,

00:02:46   and if you have no case on your iPhone or iPad,

00:02:50   it either falls forward or back.

00:02:53   I did a video about this a couple weeks ago,

00:02:56   how to make a homemade stand for your iPad

00:02:58   because I was putting my iPad on all these random things

00:03:00   and it kept falling backwards.

00:03:02   And I wanted to go order an iPad stand from Amazon

00:03:05   and of course they were back ordered forever.

00:03:07   Finally, I got them in this week.

00:03:09   But no, a wire hanger and a cardboard box,

00:03:12   great stands for your iPad.

00:03:15   - So you had a column on this?

00:03:18   - I wouldn't say a column, I did a quick video about this.

00:03:20   - Yeah, a quick video.

00:03:21   Now this is for an iPad.

00:03:23   - Yeah, it works for an iPhone though too.

00:03:24   - Oh, I did see that, I did see that.

00:03:25   Yeah, and you made one out of Lego too, right?

00:03:27   - Yes, yes, that was my project, my son,

00:03:31   and then it falls every time.

00:03:32   We did a call this morning,

00:03:34   he had a doctor's appointment on FaceTime

00:03:36   and then the Legos just completely fell down.

00:03:38   So yeah, actually this all means to say

00:03:42   just buy a nice iPad stand.

00:03:44   - Well, it's funny though, because iPads,

00:03:46   they have better, we'll write into the show,

00:03:49   but this plays into your MacBook Air video from last week.

00:03:53   So it's a question, what device do you use

00:03:57   for doing a call, because your,

00:04:02   a Mac is most flexible, right?

00:04:04   And it's got, you just stack it on some books,

00:04:08   it's not top heavy, Macs, once you have it

00:04:10   on a pile of books, or any laptop, right?

00:04:13   any regular laptop, Mac, PC, whatever,

00:04:16   it's not gonna fall over because the screen

00:04:19   is very lightweight and the base with the keyboard

00:04:22   is very heavy.

00:04:23   So you put some books or anything to prop it up

00:04:25   and then you can tilt the screen just the way you want it.

00:04:28   There you go.

00:04:29   But terrible cameras.

00:04:32   iPads, great cameras, but they're very top heavy.

00:04:37   Kind of. - Correct.

00:04:39   And my big thing, 'cause when I was doing that video

00:04:42   on the iPad stands, I was recording a lot of video

00:04:45   using the front-facing camera from the iPad.

00:04:48   And I guess I'd always realize this,

00:04:51   but video calling with your iPad vertically

00:04:55   is not as good as video calling horizontally,

00:04:58   but the camera then gets put on the horizontal side

00:05:01   because the camera's located at the top of the screen

00:05:03   if the top of the screen is vertical.

00:05:05   You follow me?

00:05:06   - I do, and I ran into the exact same problem

00:05:10   where I was on a group Zoom happy hour last week

00:05:15   with a bunch of friends just,

00:05:17   "Hey, let's just talk to friends."

00:05:21   And I got complaints because my video was vertical

00:05:24   'cause I was using my iPad vertically

00:05:27   and they were like, "Everybody else is horizontal.

00:05:30   They're driving a snot to John.

00:05:31   You gotta go horizontal."

00:05:33   But then when I went horizontal,

00:05:34   now my camera's off to the left.

00:05:36   I guess you could flip it around the other way

00:05:37   make it on the right, but either way, it's not centered.

00:05:40   - Right, and you're looking,

00:05:41   because you're used to video calling on a laptop,

00:05:43   you're looking smack in the middle of the laptop.

00:05:45   I mean, as much as, and I've always give this advice,

00:05:47   like I've written this work from home column every day

00:05:50   for our newsletter, and I'm like, feel like every day,

00:05:52   I'm like, look into the camera, look into the camera.

00:05:54   But like, it's so hard to look into the camera

00:05:56   when you're video chatting, you wanna look at the screen,

00:05:59   which makes sense, right?

00:06:00   You're looking at the person.

00:06:01   But with the iPad, you end up trying to look

00:06:04   at the center of the screen,

00:06:05   but actually that camera's off to the right,

00:06:06   so it just looks super weird to the viewer.

00:06:09   - Yeah. - Or the left.

00:06:10   - And we're all getting used to this,

00:06:12   and it's kind of,

00:06:13   in that way that we're collectively,

00:06:17   all the good people on the planet

00:06:19   are all pulling with each other,

00:06:21   and we're all forgiving of it,

00:06:22   and everybody's having business calls,

00:06:24   and we're all that guy,

00:06:26   remember that guy on the BBC and his little girl,

00:06:28   he was over in Taiwan or something,

00:06:29   and his little girl came barging into the room

00:06:32   a year or two ago? - Yeah, it was the best.

00:06:34   It was the best and they became worldwide celebrities because the girl was adorable

00:06:38   and she had this nice little march when she came in.

00:06:42   But we're all that now, right?

00:06:44   Dogs are coming in and kids are coming in and all sorts of crazy stuff.

00:06:48   You know, you could be in the middle of a very important meeting with your colleagues

00:06:53   remotely, and if the doorbell rings and you think it might be a shipment of toilet paper,

00:06:59   everybody agrees, "Go, go answer the door."

00:07:02   You cannot...

00:07:03   You cannot miss the possibility of receiving some TP.

00:07:08   Everybody gets it.

00:07:09   You know, we're all in this together.

00:07:11   But I do think that as forgiving as we all can be of makeshift offices and, you know,

00:07:20   PCs and webcams that people haven't been used to using in a professional context because

00:07:25   they just haven't needed them, it's weird when you're not making eye contact with the

00:07:30   camera because you look like you're like, what are you doing? Are you reading, you know,

00:07:34   something? Are you reading like a web browser over on the side? Are you not paying—you could

00:07:37   be paying complete attention to the meeting, but if your eyes are off to the side, it makes you look

00:07:42   like you're reading your phone or something. Yeah, and I think like before we were in this

00:07:49   period, we kind of took video chatting for granted, which is weird for me to say because we do it all

00:07:55   the time with my parents and, you know, my son with his grandparents. But like when I was doing

00:07:59   a video call with work people, it was always this sort of like, okay, like it's often the

00:08:03   side I'm not paying attention to it. But now I'm so desperate for human interaction and

00:08:09   face-to-face human interaction and this is the only way I'm communicating with colleagues that

00:08:12   like I'm actually paying attention to it. So you're like hypercritical of what you're seeing

00:08:17   and you're, you know, you want to make the experience better, but there's like you're

00:08:21   saying, there's like, you're not really sure what other people are doing, you've got the

00:08:26   quality in the middle of this all,

00:08:28   like the actual webcam quality,

00:08:30   the design of these devices,

00:08:32   and then of course, like the big one being these services,

00:08:35   the internet services, which are hit or miss

00:08:37   on terms of a lot of things.

00:08:38   I know you've been covering some of the Zoom issues.

00:08:42   So it's sort of all of a mess, really.

00:08:45   I mean, it's great.

00:08:46   Like on one hand, like it's great.

00:08:47   It's amazing that we have these tools and we can do it.

00:08:49   On the other hand, it's like,

00:08:50   this whole stuff has been a mess

00:08:51   and just like no one's really been paying attention to it.

00:08:54   - Yeah, and you know, I keep thinking about the fact

00:08:56   that there's no, Josh Topolski had a column a week ago

00:09:01   over at The Input, his new thing,

00:09:03   and I just thought it was such a nice sentiment,

00:09:05   just thank God for the internet,

00:09:07   I think was actually the headline of the column.

00:09:09   And in a nutshell, it's true,

00:09:12   as awful as the whole situation is,

00:09:15   it is so much more bearable,

00:09:18   and so many of us are, and I realize, again,

00:09:22   it's really, I know that there are

00:09:25   millions and millions, tens of millions,

00:09:28   hundreds of millions, I guess,

00:09:29   of people who have jobs that can't be done remotely

00:09:32   and it's a huge economic problem.

00:09:34   But for those of us who can, it's terrific that we can,

00:09:38   but it's entirely enabled over the internet.

00:09:42   And then at a social level,

00:09:43   the fact that we're still able to do anything

00:09:46   other than simple phone calls,

00:09:48   and we can actually do things like see faces

00:09:51   and share screens and stuff,

00:09:54   and just keep ourselves from going insane

00:09:58   and doing something other than watching TV all day,

00:10:02   which is where we would have been 30 years ago.

00:10:04   It's unbelievable.

00:10:08   - No, and that's why I said it's a mess,

00:10:11   but it's like, we're not gonna complain about a lot of this.

00:10:14   And I feel like everything I've been writing

00:10:15   has been somewhat complaining, but also like,

00:10:18   well, I wouldn't have noticed this before.

00:10:20   That's how I sort of did this angle

00:10:22   with the webcam on the air review,

00:10:25   it's like this is something

00:10:27   we just didn't think about before.

00:10:29   Or maybe we thought about it,

00:10:30   but it wasn't number one on the thing to consider

00:10:33   about evaluating a laptop being the webcam.

00:10:36   - Yeah, we might as well start with it, but--

00:10:38   - Did we not start the show?

00:10:41   Is this not gonna go somewhere?

00:10:42   - I'm started.

00:10:44   - I've started.

00:10:44   - Yeah, I'm fully into it.

00:10:45   This is the show.

00:10:46   - This is the show.

00:10:48   I think we should now just tell people

00:10:50   we did not officially start the show.

00:10:51   I just called John and just started talking like this,

00:10:55   which is what I always assume his show is.

00:10:57   - Exactly.

00:10:59   - I love how you also, you were like, I'm off today.

00:11:01   I'm not working today, technically.

00:11:03   When I'm gonna, in my life, when I say I'm not working,

00:11:05   I'm off, like I'm, it's pretty much I'm always working.

00:11:08   But you were like, why would you wanna spend the day with me?

00:11:10   I'm like, this is not work for me.

00:11:12   - Well, that's very kind of you to say, Joanna.

00:11:14   - Yeah.

00:11:15   - I do, I don't know.

00:11:16   I mean, I know that you have, you know,

00:11:20   the full institutional organization

00:11:25   of the Wall Street Journal to work within.

00:11:30   And so there is more of a structure.

00:11:32   I have to say, on an ordinary basis,

00:11:35   in normal times, the way I work,

00:11:37   the fact that I don't really have colleagues,

00:11:40   I can lose track of what day it is.

00:11:42   In the midst of this, it is absolutely nuts

00:11:47   how frequently I completely forget

00:11:50   what day of the week it is.

00:11:51   - Same, same.

00:11:54   - You said yesterday, you thought yesterday was Friday.

00:11:56   Number one, it did occur to me,

00:11:59   you mentioned this on chat yesterday

00:12:00   that you thought yesterday was Friday.

00:12:02   Now this was like at like eight or nine o'clock at night,

00:12:06   which does make me think that therefore

00:12:08   you must have thought you blew off our show

00:12:11   because we said we were gonna do it on Friday.

00:12:14   I didn't call you out on it.

00:12:16   I was like, oh, I should check in with him

00:12:18   about when we should do the show.

00:12:20   And I was like, but I thought it was supposed to be today,

00:12:23   so I might have missed it.

00:12:25   But oh well, I mean, then you didn't remind me.

00:12:27   - No, I went to-- - To do the show.

00:12:29   If I had missed it, you didn't remind me to do it.

00:12:31   - No, I did not check in.

00:12:33   Tuesday, it was like, I don't know, I worked till like,

00:12:36   I mean, I took a break for dinner and stuff,

00:12:39   but then I went back to work,

00:12:40   and I think I wasn't really done working on stuff

00:12:43   for during "Fireball" until around midnight.

00:12:45   And I'm a night owl, and this whole situation

00:12:48   has only exacerbated the fact that it doesn't really matter

00:12:51   what time of day I do anything.

00:12:54   But I didn't get done until, I don't know, midnight or so.

00:12:57   Wanted to watch some TV with Amy,

00:13:00   and she's gotten, she's shifted way from waking up early

00:13:04   to sleeping in a bit and staying up later,

00:13:07   so wasn't stretching it too much.

00:13:09   I was 100% convinced it was Monday.

00:13:11   It was Tuesday at midnight, so it was two days

00:13:13   into the week and she was, I forget how it came up,

00:13:15   she was like, "No, today's Tuesday."

00:13:17   And I was like, "Oh." (laughs)

00:13:19   Really had no idea.

00:13:20   I honestly, I was so convinced of it,

00:13:22   I actually looked at my phone and was like,

00:13:25   "Ah, she's really right."

00:13:26   - Yeah, for me, I work pretty much all the time,

00:13:30   even when this isn't happening.

00:13:32   I feel like I've had to really just come to tell myself

00:13:39   and agree with myself, I love to work, I love what I do,

00:13:41   And so either I'm thinking of ideas usually,

00:13:44   or I'm writing something, or I'm producing a video,

00:13:47   or I'm always thinking about the next thing I'm working on.

00:13:49   I also do some management stuff at the journal

00:13:51   with our video team.

00:13:52   So I'm usually juggling a million projects at the same time.

00:13:55   But I go to the office now,

00:13:58   and I've been going to the office.

00:14:00   There was a point in my life when I started at the journal

00:14:02   where I would go maybe two or three times a week.

00:14:04   I wouldn't go.

00:14:05   But then I took on a management role

00:14:08   in the video department a couple of years ago,

00:14:09   and I had to be there every day.

00:14:11   And so I really got into this pattern of,

00:14:13   I would go, even if I work super late hours,

00:14:16   some days there, I don't come home till midnight

00:14:18   and take a car home or something like that.

00:14:20   That delineation, just like going to a place,

00:14:23   makes a huge difference to me.

00:14:25   Even if mentally I'm always working,

00:14:27   or I'm working, like going to that place

00:14:29   gives me that structure, now I have none of that,

00:14:33   and I truly just feel like my life is on hold.

00:14:37   I don't know when, where, and when things are happening.

00:14:40   - It is really, it is bizarre how it screws

00:14:43   with your sense of time where, and at both ways.

00:14:47   Like, and it's a meme, everybody's in it together.

00:14:50   Everybody agrees that March 2020

00:14:53   felt like it was around 300 days long.

00:14:56   - Yeah, I couldn't believe, I even looked at my stuff,

00:15:00   I was like, wow, I did a lot of work this month.

00:15:02   That month started with me reviewing the Galaxy S20.

00:15:05   I was like, what?

00:15:06   That phone came out this month?

00:15:08   or it was even like, I guess it came out

00:15:11   at the very end of February.

00:15:13   I'm like, what?

00:15:14   Like that truly feels to me like a year ago.

00:15:17   - It feels like, I feel like the iPad Pro

00:15:21   and MacBook Air announcement was a while ago, you know?

00:15:24   And even that was in the early days

00:15:27   of the shelter in place stuff,

00:15:29   because it was a remote presentation from Apple

00:15:32   and everything had to be shipped.

00:15:34   There was no, you know,

00:15:35   we didn't meet with anybody face to face.

00:15:37   I was like, that feels like forever ago.

00:15:39   And it was like-- - I mean,

00:15:40   I think that was three weeks ago now.

00:15:42   - Yeah, it was three weeks. (laughs)

00:15:45   - Anyway, yeah. - Well, but very timely.

00:15:50   I mean, and obviously you were going

00:15:52   to review the MacBook Air.

00:15:54   I mean, this is really right in every single way.

00:15:58   And we can talk about the,

00:15:59   we'll talk about the MacBook Air itself.

00:16:01   But right aligned with your interests,

00:16:06   right aligned with your advocacy on the keyboard issue

00:16:10   and everything like that.

00:16:11   But your video that accompanied it

00:16:13   was specifically on the issue of,

00:16:15   hey, the webcam on this thing stinks.

00:16:20   And it's sort of an emblematic problem

00:16:22   on laptops in general.

00:16:25   - Yeah, yeah, I mean, I really,

00:16:29   and also like just, I realized a blind spot in my reviewing.

00:16:33   Like I had never, I went back

00:16:35   and I searched for webcam on my other reviews,

00:16:38   and I really had never mentioned it.

00:16:40   Which, you know, it would have only been a line,

00:16:44   something like, why does this thing suck,

00:16:46   or something like that, or it's still only 720p

00:16:49   or something, but yeah, it's really quite bad.

00:16:53   And again, the reason I noticed that was I was starting to,

00:16:56   I've been trying to do a video a week still,

00:16:58   try to keep up with my video fun,

00:17:01   and I just started realizing, I was like, wow,

00:17:04   why would I ever shoot anything here with this webcam?

00:17:08   And that got me on this path of looking at other laptops.

00:17:11   And it was funny, I actually had to run to the office

00:17:13   to go get some other laptops to compare to,

00:17:15   'cause I was like, I can't just do this piece about Apple

00:17:18   because it's not just Apple.

00:17:20   Like I started looking at the specs and I was like,

00:17:22   it's not just Apple, it's Microsoft is doing this,

00:17:25   Dell, they're all using sort of low resolution webcams,

00:17:28   at least low resolution for today.

00:17:30   So I ran to my office, I got approval to enter the building,

00:17:33   I wore my gloves, my mask.

00:17:35   I basically risked my life to do this review for everybody,

00:17:37   okay, is what I'm saying.

00:17:39   And I got all, I got, you know, my office,

00:17:42   I've got a ton of stuff, so I grab all my laptops

00:17:44   and I said, you know what, I'm gonna grab this old Pro

00:17:46   that I had here, this old MacBook Pro that I had here.

00:17:49   And that was to me like, I was like,

00:17:51   "Yeah, let me just see if it still works,

00:17:52   "'cause I have all my old laptops there."

00:17:54   My 10-year-old MacBook Pro, when I compared the quality,

00:17:57   it was shocking to me that in some conditions

00:18:00   it's actually better than the new Air.

00:18:02   I thought that was one of the most fascinating parts

00:18:05   of the review because it totally jibed with my gut feeling

00:18:10   of, you know, as much as we gripe about these webcam

00:18:15   quality issues right now, doesn't it seem like

00:18:17   they've actually gotten worse?

00:18:19   And then in the back of my head, I think,

00:18:21   ah, that's just one of those things that you think,

00:18:23   and if you actually looked at a 10-year-old webcam

00:18:26   on a MacBook, you'd be shocked.

00:18:28   But the truth is, especially in lower light situations,

00:18:31   It wasn't just a little bit better, it was a lot better.

00:18:35   - Yeah, it was a lot better in the low light test.

00:18:38   And I mean, even when I looked at,

00:18:41   it didn't really come through that well in the video

00:18:43   just because of compression and all of that stuff,

00:18:45   but even like just this very grainy,

00:18:48   the 720p camera on the Air.

00:18:50   And even though you're getting better resolution,

00:18:53   when you look at the quality next to each other,

00:18:55   it's just, it's very grainy.

00:18:57   And in some shots that MacBook Pro looked like

00:19:00   there were parts of my face that looked crisper,

00:19:02   like just like looking around the glasses or my hair.

00:19:05   I was just like, that is not pixelated.

00:19:07   - So 720p is pretty, that's pretty bad just on specs.

00:19:13   That's outdated.

00:19:14   - Right.

00:19:15   - But I would say that the bigger problem,

00:19:19   and it's easy, and I kind of feel like in a lot of reviews,

00:19:22   that's just sort of how we collectively

00:19:26   in the reviewer industry have sort of been

00:19:29   brushing this issue. It's at the end of the reviews, and you know, if the review format

00:19:34   for your publication has pros and cons, everybody remembers in the cons to stick in a 720p webcam.

00:19:41   Isn't that great? Or it kind of stinks or whatever you want to say. And yeah, just on the spec alone,

00:19:48   720p, that's really low res. But the bigger issue, I would take a 720p camera if it had better

00:19:56   lighting characteristics. And the thing I run into too, so low light, any time after sun is,

00:20:02   the sun is down, it's really, really bad. And we've been spoiled, right? You mentioned this,

00:20:08   and you compared the footage. We've got these phones in our pockets with us all the time,

00:20:12   and you turn to pick the phone up and point it at your face in the exact same lighting, and

00:20:17   it gets a reasonable, you know, and then when you compare it to the webcam, it's amazing.

00:20:24   But the other problems that I've seen as I've done a lot more—even without colleagues, I've done a

00:20:28   lot more video chats in the last few weeks. I just had a meeting, you know, before we recorded today

00:20:33   with somebody for a product demo. Middle of the day, and it's actually kind of nice lighting.

00:20:39   It's a little overcast here in Philly. It's probably the same in New York, but, you know,

00:20:43   which makes for good lighting. And my desk in my home office is right next to a window, but the

00:20:48   The window's on the side, right?

00:20:51   I'm not staring at the window, it's on my side.

00:20:53   And with the MacBook Pro webcam,

00:20:55   it's either half of my face, the one on the window,

00:20:58   is completely blown out,

00:21:01   or it gets a good,

00:21:03   a good, what's the word, not white balance, but...

00:21:08   - Just like general balance.

00:21:13   - Yeah, it just gets a good balance

00:21:14   on the light side of my face by the window,

00:21:16   and then the other side of my face

00:21:17   It looks like I'm in a film noir,

00:21:19   and it's just completely black.

00:21:22   You can only see half my face.

00:21:24   It just does not have a very--

00:21:25   - So you're Phantom of the Opera.

00:21:27   - Yeah, it just doesn't have the range.

00:21:29   It just doesn't have the range

00:21:30   to get both half lit, half shadow.

00:21:33   Whereas every iPad or iPhone

00:21:36   or any other modern phone

00:21:39   is going to do a pretty good job in that sort of situation.

00:21:42   You don't really think about it

00:21:43   when you're using your phone as a selfie cam.

00:21:47   you don't really think about the fact

00:21:48   that the light is on half of your face.

00:21:49   You just look at it, look pretty good, take a picture.

00:21:54   - Right, yeah, I mean, I think the big question is like,

00:21:58   what happens now?

00:21:59   Like, will they, I mean, I think most laptop manufacturers

00:22:03   will probably address this now,

00:22:04   given that we've been using them so much

00:22:07   and people are really, really,

00:22:08   I mean, The Verge had a piece yesterday,

00:22:10   which Neelai and I had been texting about last week as well,

00:22:13   which was kind of pegged to this,

00:22:15   which was that the Logitech cameras are sold out everywhere

00:22:17   and they're price gouged everywhere.

00:22:19   Neil, I tweeted, he paid like 90 or, I don't know,

00:22:23   over $100 for a $90 camera or something like that.

00:22:28   I had a family friend text me being like,

00:22:29   "What are you talking about?

00:22:30   These are not sold out.

00:22:31   I'm gonna buy this on Amazon."

00:22:33   I'm like, "You're gonna spend $300 for a $72 camera."

00:22:37   And so I think laptop makers are going to look

00:22:41   to address this.

00:22:42   The question I think, and you raised this in the post,

00:22:44   is how much of it has to do with the physics

00:22:46   and the mechanics of the system

00:22:49   and the amount of area that they can squeeze

00:22:50   these cameras into, plus price.

00:22:53   Like how much is that gonna jack up

00:22:55   some of the prices on some of this?

00:22:57   - Yeah, and I think that the physical space issue

00:22:59   is too easy to overlook

00:23:02   if you're just being casual about it.

00:23:04   But if you really look at how thin

00:23:07   like the new MacBook Air lid is,

00:23:09   and it gets tapered up at the top so it's even thinner,

00:23:12   and compare that to just how thick your iPhone

00:23:17   or your iPad is, and combine it with the fact

00:23:20   that without doing a little mini lesson here

00:23:24   on the optical physics of cameras,

00:23:27   it is not a coincidence that every single phone

00:23:34   from every single manufacturer now has a camera bump

00:23:37   of some sort.

00:23:38   We don't even talk about camera bumps anymore

00:23:40   because it's just accepted that the camera housing

00:23:45   is going to stick out.

00:23:47   Now, the front-facing cameras don't have bumps.

00:23:50   But even so, the actual physical depth of the device

00:23:56   from the front surface to as far away

00:24:00   that the sensor can be is significantly,

00:24:03   I know that compared to standalone camera cameras,

00:24:07   they're all crazy thin.

00:24:10   but it really does make a difference

00:24:11   how thin laptop lids are.

00:24:13   So I guess the big, my, you know,

00:24:17   I don't think anybody wants the entire lid

00:24:19   of their laptop to be as thick as a tablet,

00:24:23   but could we go with a bump?

00:24:26   - Mm-hmm.

00:24:27   - That's--

00:24:28   - And I was also thinking,

00:24:29   and it's another piece I wrote this week about Face ID,

00:24:33   it's made me think, you know, well,

00:24:34   at least Windows has had facial recognition

00:24:37   for a while on laptops,

00:24:38   but Apple's never gone that route.

00:24:40   And what could face ID on a laptop bring

00:24:44   that they haven't been able to bring

00:24:45   with the fingerprint sensor?

00:24:47   - Yeah, and I wonder how much, again,

00:24:50   how much of that is cost?

00:24:51   It's gotta be somewhat of a factor,

00:24:53   and how much of it is that the face ID stuff needs

00:24:58   Z depth, Z access depth to go deeper.

00:25:08   I don't know, but...

00:25:09   - When you were saying that,

00:25:11   I thought you meant like, like, zee deps.

00:25:13   (laughing)

00:25:14   - I was putting on a French accent.

00:25:16   - Yeah, like, zee, if they want to zee you.

00:25:19   - But, ah, there's no good solution.

00:25:23   I will say that it's, you know,

00:25:25   and I've been using, ever since this trackpad thing came out,

00:25:28   I have been doing, I'm kind of addicted to it,

00:25:32   and all of a sudden, without, I've already,

00:25:34   I've already, yeah, for the iPad, I've already,

00:25:38   you know, written my iPad Pro review.

00:25:40   There wasn't really much to review.

00:25:41   It's kind of a minor, really a speed bump update.

00:25:44   But with this trackpad support,

00:25:46   I'm doing a lot more work in my kitchen

00:25:48   just to sort of not be locked in my home office

00:25:50   all day every day during this thing.

00:25:53   And rather than lug a MacBook around,

00:25:55   I'm just using my iPad in the kitchen

00:25:57   and my Mac and my desk in my office.

00:26:00   But it emphasizes for me, like,

00:26:04   when I'm working on my iPad like this,

00:26:07   sort of like a laptop, I've got the iPad sideways

00:26:10   and it just feels like the camera should be at the top

00:26:14   when the iPad is horizontal.

00:26:17   - Right, so then the question would be,

00:26:19   would they have to put two cameras in there?

00:26:22   Or would they just move the camera?

00:26:24   If we start, if we move to a pro situation

00:26:27   where we're using it in much more horizontal situations

00:26:30   like you're saying, does it make sense

00:26:32   just to move it there?

00:26:33   - Yeah, and then does it suddenly run into the issue

00:26:36   that all the people who hold it in the vertical orientation,

00:26:41   now their thumb is gonna be holding it all the time

00:26:44   when they're holding it up?

00:26:45   I don't know.

00:26:46   I mean, there's no,

00:26:47   like the upside of,

00:26:51   especially tablets compared to phones,

00:26:56   I feel like we rotate them a lot more.

00:26:58   Yes, phones, ever since the iPhone, can rotate sideways.

00:27:01   But for the most part, I mean,

00:27:03   and now there's this whole quibi,

00:27:05   I think that's how you pronounce it.

00:27:06   - Yeah, yeah.

00:27:07   - But people shoot lots of,

00:27:09   people are so used to holding their phones vertically

00:27:13   that they even shoot their video that way.

00:27:16   Most people wouldn't even notice

00:27:21   other than when they go to watch a horizontal video.

00:27:23   That's the only time, or I guess to play a game

00:27:25   for the most part, people don't turn their phone sideways.

00:27:28   Tablets they turn all the time.

00:27:30   And now that I've got this trackpad support,

00:27:33   I'm turning my iPad sideways,

00:27:37   turn it the other way, turn it the other way.

00:27:38   I'm going back and forth all the time,

00:27:40   and so there is no answer to where should the camera go.

00:27:44   They've gotta make, I don't think they're gonna double up.

00:27:47   It would increase the cost to some factor,

00:27:50   and it seems needlessly duplicate

00:27:54   to put two entirely different camera systems in there

00:27:57   just so that there's always one in the center,

00:27:59   But it sticks out the more you use your iPad

00:28:03   in horizontal orientation.

00:28:07   - Do you use Face ID on your iPad?

00:28:09   - Yeah, I love it.

00:28:10   - Yeah, yeah, I mean, I feel like I don't use it as much,

00:28:14   but yeah, I think I've just gotten into the habit

00:28:17   of passwords on the iPad.

00:28:20   I also have, I have not spent a lot of time

00:28:22   with the new Pro.

00:28:23   I mean, I have it here, I have it sitting next

00:28:24   to the side of my bed, I've been using it at night.

00:28:26   But yeah, to your point, I've been using it far more

00:28:28   with that keyboard dock in horizontal than I have vertically.

00:28:32   But I'm very excited when I get the Magic,

00:28:35   what is it, the Magic Keyboard?

00:28:36   Is that what the--

00:28:38   - Yeah, unfortunately, they're just calling it

00:28:40   the Magic Keyboard, which is the exact same name

00:28:43   as the standalone, just plain Bluetooth keyboard.

00:28:46   It's a very, it's a very Apple-like thing

00:28:49   to just call it a Magic Keyboard.

00:28:51   Not the Magic Keyboard cover, not the Magic Keyboard case,

00:28:55   it's just called the Magic Keyboard.

00:28:57   I'm sort of calling it the Magic Keyboard Cover,

00:29:00   just to keep it clear in my head,

00:29:02   but it's not the official name.

00:29:04   - Yeah, so I think when I get that,

00:29:06   I mean, I just imagine I'm gonna be using it,

00:29:09   I don't know, 90% of the time horizontally.

00:29:12   - Yeah, me too.

00:29:13   And it's funny because the new,

00:29:15   the cases that are out, the Smart Keyboard case,

00:29:18   the one that doesn't have a trackpad

00:29:19   and just has the fabric-covered keyboard,

00:29:22   for the first time, they put an Apple logo

00:29:25   on the back of the cover, and the Apple logo is oriented

00:29:30   such that the Apple logo looks correct

00:29:33   when it's in the horizontal laptop configuration.

00:29:38   So if you're holding it more like a book

00:29:40   and fold the cover around,

00:29:42   well, you cover up the Apple logo by covering,

00:29:45   by folding it around, so I guess that's one reason to do it.

00:29:48   But I kind of feel like they were resistant

00:29:49   to put Apple logos on those smart covers in the first place

00:29:53   because they didn't want it to look, quote unquote,

00:29:56   wrong half the time.

00:29:58   - Yeah, I've actually never noticed that.

00:30:00   - Yeah.

00:30:01   All right, let me take a break here

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00:31:56   - We're talking Eero to Eero now too.

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00:32:01   - Do you have a window open or something?

00:32:03   - No, why is that?

00:32:06   You hear something?

00:32:06   - Yeah, I hear something, like a little white noise.

00:32:09   - It's my laptop.

00:32:10   - Is it really?

00:32:12   Does it? - Yeah.

00:32:13   So we can talk about this.

00:32:14   We can talk about why this MacBook Pro makes that sound.

00:32:18   - Yeah, let's talk about it.

00:32:19   - Yeah, I mean, this was part of my,

00:32:21   there was a couple lines in the MacBook Air review,

00:32:24   but I have just been finding that Chrome is,

00:32:29   I mean, we've known this for a long time,

00:32:31   but Chrome and the amount of stuff I do in Chrome,

00:32:35   and apparently I have some sort of Chrome extension

00:32:37   that runs in the background that uses an insane amount

00:32:40   of CPU and memory.

00:32:43   And so my laptop just constantly sounds like it's being,

00:32:47   it's going to take off for outer space or something.

00:32:50   (laughing)

00:32:52   - I know--

00:32:52   - I mean, I could move the laptop across the room,

00:32:55   but I'm plugged in with the mic to the laptop.

00:32:57   - Nah, just let it go.

00:32:59   - You know what I could do?

00:33:00   I could close Chrome.

00:33:01   That would be the biggest sacrifice of my life

00:33:03   I could make for you.

00:33:04   - Yeah, do you need it while we talk?

00:33:06   - How else will I check my email during your ad spots?

00:33:11   (laughing)

00:33:13   - Check it on your phone.

00:33:14   - I'm closing Chrome for you.

00:33:17   I've done it.

00:33:18   This is the biggest sacrifice someone could make

00:33:20   in life for you, John.

00:33:22   And I bet you it's gonna go away soon.

00:33:26   - Our mutual friend, Walt Mossberg,

00:33:28   had a tweet a week or two ago,

00:33:31   something, I guess I could look it up,

00:33:33   but basically he was just saying something to the effect of,

00:33:36   hey, if you use Chrome, okay,

00:33:39   but accept that it's going to use a lot more CPU resources

00:33:44   and hog your battery and make your fan come on.

00:33:47   And you should think about switching.

00:33:50   And if you're on a Mac, you could switch to Safari.

00:33:52   You could switch to Firefox if you're looking

00:33:54   for something other than Safari.

00:33:56   There's a lot of other options.

00:33:59   There are other options out there.

00:34:01   And it's just a different set of,

00:34:05   and people love Chrome.

00:34:06   Chrome has some features that other browsers just don't have.

00:34:09   They have that extension ecosystem.

00:34:12   And I hear it all the time.

00:34:13   Whenever I bring it up, I always get responses from people

00:34:16   who are like, you know, I'd like to leave Chrome

00:34:18   because I understand, I see what it does to the battery

00:34:21   or something like that, but they'll say,

00:34:24   and the but often involves,

00:34:25   but there's like these two extensions

00:34:27   that I just can't live without,

00:34:29   and they're not available for other browsers,

00:34:32   and that's the trade-off, you know?

00:34:33   It's like so much of technology is,

00:34:36   like what we do is writing about trade-offs.

00:34:39   - Yep, yep, and I've felt the same way,

00:34:41   and I have to hand it to the Safari team.

00:34:43   Anytime I write about why I can't go to Safari,

00:34:46   and I'll give a couple of reasons why,

00:34:49   I don't wanna say they do it for me.

00:34:51   I'm sure they do it for a lot of people,

00:34:52   but they end up solving a lot of those problems.

00:34:55   For me, one of the last holdout issues that I was having

00:34:57   was the favicons.

00:34:58   It was one of the things about Chrome

00:35:00   that was just like, I could instantly know what app

00:35:02   or what website I was on with the favicons.

00:35:04   And they built that into Safari, and I was like,

00:35:06   okay, I'm gonna switch over to Safari.

00:35:08   I finally got it.

00:35:09   I think it was like maybe two WWACs ago they announced that.

00:35:13   I think it was--

00:35:15   - I forget the timing on that.

00:35:16   I had a little effort--

00:35:17   - It was in Catalina.

00:35:18   I think maybe we talked about, I mean, I'm sure,

00:35:21   no one can take sole credit for it,

00:35:25   but probably you could.

00:35:28   And so I was like, I'm gonna switch over,

00:35:30   and then I switch over and I do so much in Google,

00:35:33   Google Docs with Gmail, with Drive,

00:35:37   it just works better in Chrome.

00:35:38   And so I say, okay, I'm gonna just keep Chrome open

00:35:40   for those things, but then managing two browsers

00:35:43   is like a ridiculous thing where you don't know which one,

00:35:46   and you need to set a default

00:35:47   because then you're clicking from one app to another

00:35:49   and you're in three different browsers

00:35:50   or two different browsers.

00:35:52   And so I do, I need to just be able to say, you know what?

00:35:56   I'm just gonna use Safari

00:35:57   and I will maybe just use something like Firefox

00:36:01   or something like that as an alt to Chrome

00:36:03   for certain things, but it's a big move.

00:36:07   It's like a life-changing move.

00:36:08   - For anybody who doesn't know the backstory,

00:36:10   favicons, favicons, I don't know how you pronounce it,

00:36:13   but favicons are the little site icons.

00:36:15   So you go to the wallstreetjournal.com,

00:36:17   there's a little icon with the Wall Street Journal logo.

00:36:19   You go to Daring Fireball,

00:36:20   there's a little Daring Fireball logo in the URL bar.

00:36:24   And in most browsers, every browser except Safari,

00:36:28   when you open tabs,

00:36:30   it's the little icon that represents the site

00:36:33   and it's in the tab.

00:36:34   And then the more tabs you open in a window,

00:36:36   smaller each tab gets, which means the less text of the name of the tab can show, and

00:36:44   the icons become the only way to really identify which tab is which.

00:36:48   And insanely to me, Safari had no option, not even an option, to show these icons until

00:36:56   like a year and a half ago, maybe it was two years ago at this point.

00:37:00   I'm trying to look.

00:37:02   But I complained about it and I got some feedback from people on the Safari team who were like,

00:37:09   "You know what?

00:37:10   You know, this has been a, you know, we're aware of this.

00:37:13   This has been a battle inside."

00:37:15   I have, you know, I don't know the inside story of who, but apparently, you know, obviously

00:37:19   it wasn't like Apple wasn't aware of the issue.

00:37:22   There's, there is some, either a person or a small cater of people within Apple who did

00:37:29   not want support for these icons in Safari because they thought it would look bad to

00:37:35   have all these random icons and colors in breaking up the beauty of Safari's monochrome

00:37:41   appearance.

00:37:43   And that's partially why, you know how like when you do a pinned tab, I never use, I don't

00:37:49   like the pinned tab feature, but I know some people love it.

00:37:53   But Safari implemented its own standard for pin tabs

00:37:57   where they use, literally enforce a monochromatic icon

00:38:02   so that the icon is just a black and white image

00:38:05   and then I guess they color it in gray

00:38:07   so it's just a shape, not color.

00:38:09   And I think that that was a concession

00:38:12   to the same people who didn't want the favicons

00:38:15   in the regular tabs because they thought the color,

00:38:19   any random site's color is like, oh my God, you're at CNN,

00:38:22   Now you've got this red icon, it clashes with the beauty

00:38:25   of this other tab's icon, which is crazy, right?

00:38:30   I mean-- - That's fascinating.

00:38:31   I never knew this, I just added the story.

00:38:33   I mean, I guess it makes sense.

00:38:35   - I may not be expressing the argument against favicons well

00:38:40   because it doesn't make any sense to me,

00:38:41   but basically they thought it was ugly, I guess,

00:38:44   and that they couldn't, and that somebody had

00:38:46   the political clout to keep the feature from being added,

00:38:50   And me publicly writing about it, I think you complain,

00:38:55   I mean, we certainly aren't the only two tech pundits

00:38:57   who were complaining about it,

00:38:58   but I really kind of went all in on it.

00:39:01   - I remember this now, yeah.

00:39:03   - And I guess the thing that I found out

00:39:05   and that I was told would be very influential

00:39:08   was that I shared the number of people

00:39:12   who either listen to my show or read my site

00:39:14   who wrote to me and said, in all sincerity,

00:39:18   would switch to Safari except for the no icons and tabs thing like so it wasn't even down to

00:39:24   Extensions or other factors that might keep them on Chrome or Firefox or something

00:39:29   It was literally I have 20 tabs open at a time. I can't tell what they are without icons

00:39:35   So I can't switch to Safari and that apparently was a compelling argument that kind of broke the logjam within

00:39:42   Apple and was like look we're actually our refusal to put icons in the tabs is actually keeping people from using Safari

00:39:50   And they're like, okay, but even every I mean I'm looking at your piece you wrote it in August

00:39:55   2017 right and so I um, I think that it happened. I forget when it happened boy that that feels like a long time ago

00:40:02   It's 2000 I mean to be fair yesterday feels like three years ago. So so I forget when they actually fixed it

00:40:10   - I was like about two years ago.

00:40:12   - That makes sense.

00:40:14   - It was before Catalina, so.

00:40:16   - I wanna say like the summer of 2018.

00:40:18   - Yes, 'cause I remember them announcing it at WBC

00:40:21   and me like wanting to clap.

00:40:22   - Yeah, yes, I wanted to like storm the stage.

00:40:25   - Yeah, but here's the funny thing,

00:40:28   is that they did embrace it, but only to a degree.

00:40:31   This is still something you have to go turn on.

00:40:34   - Exactly, it's still off by default.

00:40:36   - And so like when I was setting up this new Mac,

00:40:39   I was like, oh, freaking with the favicons again.

00:40:41   And I was like, I gotta like go to Google,

00:40:43   how to turn it on.

00:40:43   And it's like, okay, it's super easy.

00:40:45   Just go to preferences and tabs and turn it on.

00:40:47   But I'm like, why do I have to do that?

00:40:49   - Right, it still seems, and again,

00:40:51   that there still is that contingent within,

00:40:56   I don't know who the people are, honestly.

00:40:59   And I realize normal people don't change the defaults.

00:41:03   The default preferences for any sort of software

00:41:08   are so important because so few people think to change them.

00:41:12   And they shouldn't, right?

00:41:13   That's just, you know, that's the whole point

00:41:15   of personal technology is that the stuff should--

00:41:18   - Work.

00:41:20   - Just work out of the box to the best degree as possible.

00:41:25   I still think, I don't wanna complain

00:41:27   because they did add the feature, but I will complain.

00:41:30   I don't wanna do it, but I have to do it.

00:41:32   That I still think the default should be that they're on.

00:41:35   I mean, it has to be that any reasonable person

00:41:39   who uses more than one tab at a time

00:41:43   would like to have the icons in the tabs.

00:41:46   It just seems crazy.

00:41:48   - I'm totally with you on that, but if I complain

00:41:50   and then I'm like, well, if they do this,

00:41:51   then I'll switch from Chrome, I'd be lying.

00:41:55   - Chrome lets you really get tiny, tiny tabs too.

00:41:59   I mean, it's an interesting user interface

00:42:04   interface debate and study, and if I were teaching like a course on user interface design,

00:42:13   I would love to do like a whole segment of the class.

00:42:17   Let's just think about how tabs work in a browser and compare the implementations from

00:42:22   a couple of popular browsers, because it's a very specific feature.

00:42:26   If you don't really think about it, you might think, "Ah, they're all mostly the same.

00:42:30   They're these, you know, they're tabs.

00:42:31   You can close them.

00:42:33   You can move them around.

00:42:34   can drag them out to Windows. But there's some really interesting differences in there.

00:42:37   And one of the, I think, a really big difference is that Chrome will keep shrinking the tabs

00:42:44   to the size of an icon, practically, before it does something else to, you know, more

00:42:52   or less make the tab bar a scrollable region. Whereas Safari on, you know, I'm talking about

00:42:57   the Mac here on desktop, but the iPad version of Safari is a lot like the tabs are a lot

00:43:04   like the Mac version. Like obviously on the phone they're different because they're not

00:43:09   really tabs at all on the phone. They're these browser windows that sort of scroll up and

00:43:15   down. Let's leave the phone aside for now. The minimum width of a tab in Safari is, I'm

00:43:23   I'm gonna say here, maybe about an inch and a half,

00:43:27   something, you know, like physically,

00:43:29   it's definitely more than an inch.

00:43:31   Whereas Chrome will let you shrink it down

00:43:34   to just like a quarter of an inch,

00:43:36   where it's really just a little thing with the icon.

00:43:40   - Right, where it's just the favicon.

00:43:41   - Right, and--

00:43:42   - So by the way, I looked it up,

00:43:44   they enabled this in Safari 12 in 2018.

00:43:48   - Huh, what--

00:43:51   - So it was two years ago.

00:43:52   - Yeah, tabs, Safari 12, there we go.

00:43:55   Thank you Safari team.

00:43:56   - Yeah, yeah, and we don't mean, we are thankful.

00:43:59   We don't mean to complain,

00:44:00   but we also could keep complaining.

00:44:03   (laughing)

00:44:05   - All right, so I guess we should go back

00:44:09   to the MacBook Air.

00:44:11   Your review of the MacBook Air.

00:44:14   I thought it was, I was waiting for it.

00:44:18   I was waiting for your review to see what you'd have to say.

00:44:20   I suspected you would like the keyboard,

00:44:23   but basically, - I did.

00:44:25   - You know, your conclusion was, you know,

00:44:28   not to put words in your mouth, but this is the laptop.

00:44:30   If you're gonna get a Mac laptop,

00:44:32   this is the one most people should buy.

00:44:35   - Yeah, even though I'm not buying it,

00:44:37   which goes back to this Chrome thing, by the way.

00:44:40   So, and I had a couple of lines in there,

00:44:42   but I realized through writing this piece

00:44:45   that I'm actually more of a pro user now than I ever was.

00:44:49   I've been doing a lot of heavy video work and I use Chrome,

00:44:54   and that is another thing.

00:44:55   And I find that like, I'm just, even on this 16 inch Pro,

00:44:59   sometimes tapping out the CPU and memory

00:45:03   with the amount of things I'm doing in Chrome.

00:45:06   But between audio, video,

00:45:07   and sometimes I've got Photoshop open,

00:45:09   I've got Premiere open, I've got a bunch of stuff,

00:45:10   and I just like, it was too much for the air,

00:45:13   even though I love that machine.

00:45:15   And it was also, you know, again,

00:45:16   kind of the circumstances of reviewing it right now.

00:45:21   I just want this kind of desktop replacement laptop

00:45:24   in my life right now, 'cause I'm not commuting.

00:45:25   I have not even seen my backpack now for, I don't know,

00:45:30   weeks, I miss my backpack.

00:45:33   I miss so many things about my old life.

00:45:35   So it might be a little bit of that,

00:45:40   but I am holding out for this 14 inch,

00:45:43   the 13 inch replacement model.

00:45:45   I think that's gonna be the Goldilocks for me, just right.

00:45:50   - I think so for me too.

00:45:51   I still love, I'm using it right now,

00:45:57   I still love my 2014, 2015, 13-inch MacBook Pro.

00:46:02   I really do love, no, 2014, I always forget,

00:46:08   this is like the third time on my podcast

00:46:10   where I've forgotten just how old this MacBook Pro is.

00:46:14   It's mid-2014, so it's almost six years old at this point.

00:46:18   It's like five and a half years old.

00:46:19   Still is a fantastic little machine.

00:46:23   I love the size.

00:46:24   And the Air for me is the same way.

00:46:28   And it's even just using, even using Safari,

00:46:31   I can't even complain about Chrome,

00:46:32   but if you are like me and don't close,

00:46:37   I don't really close tabs, I just,

00:46:40   if I feel like my window has gotten too crowded with tabs,

00:46:42   my way of declaring tab bankruptcy

00:46:45   isn't to close everything or clean it up.

00:46:47   I just make a new window and start piling up tabs.

00:46:50   - So you just leave the tabs in the background?

00:46:52   - Yeah, more or less, until maybe like once every two weeks,

00:46:56   then I'll go and actually, all right, I gotta figure,

00:47:01   I gotta do something here because my,

00:47:03   when Safari makes your fan go on,

00:47:05   then you know you have too many tabs.

00:47:07   - You know it's bad.

00:47:09   - But I don't really clean it up until then.

00:47:11   - But also sometimes, do you find that,

00:47:13   do you get that alert sometimes where,

00:47:15   if you're, use Gmail, right, or Google Mail?

00:47:18   - Yeah, but I don't use it through the Gmail interface

00:47:20   for the most part.

00:47:22   I usually use it through the Mail interface,

00:47:24   so I don't really leave Gmail open.

00:47:26   And the other trick I have is for privacy reasons

00:47:31   and for, it just seems to work better,

00:47:34   I more or less use Chrome.

00:47:36   I don't use Chrome for regular browsing,

00:47:37   but I use Chrome for anything Google related,

00:47:40   other than YouTube.

00:47:41   So YouTube, you can't avoid just using.

00:47:44   But if I actually want to use the Gmail web interface

00:47:49   for Gmail, I actually fire up Chrome

00:47:52   and it automatically reopens all my Gmail accounts

00:47:56   into tabs in Chrome and I just go through it there.

00:47:59   - Right, but that, yeah, that's the nightmare

00:48:01   of trying to do that and balance that

00:48:03   'cause then if you're clicking into things from Chrome

00:48:06   and in your Gmail, then you're getting kicked back to Chrome.

00:48:09   You're not going back to Safari.

00:48:11   That's what I've been trying to manage the two browsers

00:48:13   for weeks or months or whatever.

00:48:16   And it just, it's sort of a nightmare.

00:48:17   You've got to commit to one.

00:48:19   Yeah, I mean, I love the Air.

00:48:25   I think it's a great system.

00:48:26   I heard from many readers who were super excited

00:48:29   to finally be able to get rid of their old Air

00:48:31   and who were waiting and waiting and waiting

00:48:35   because they had read all about the keyboard situation

00:48:37   and said, no way, no way.

00:48:38   And so they finally felt really good.

00:48:40   and I felt really confident in saying,

00:48:42   "Finally, you can get this machine."

00:48:45   But yeah, for me, I'm actually still stuck

00:48:48   with my old Air for my actual computer,

00:48:52   though I've been using the 16-inch MacBook Pro loaner

00:48:55   on and off because I really wanted

00:48:56   to test the keyboard over time.

00:48:58   - Yeah, same here.

00:48:59   That's why I'm still using the 16-inch review unit.

00:49:02   I find that the keyboard, I thought this was interesting,

00:49:04   and I don't know, again, it seems like the sort of thing

00:49:09   where maybe it's the placebo effect

00:49:11   and I'm feeling what I wanna feel,

00:49:13   but I feel like it's, if anything,

00:49:14   it's gotten better over time.

00:49:16   - Yeah, I said that too.

00:49:18   - Yeah, I don't think it's just my imagination.

00:49:21   It just feels like, unlike the butterfly key,

00:49:24   which tends to get stuck over time,

00:49:27   it feels like the new scissor switch one,

00:49:31   it just sort of breaks, it wears in,

00:49:34   but it's not like they've got,

00:49:35   the keys have gotten wobbly in any way.

00:49:37   They're not wobbly.

00:49:39   It just feels like a very, very nice keyboard to type on, which seems like--

00:49:44   Yes, I said in my review, I said it feels like this is broken in versus broken.

00:49:49   Right.

00:49:50   Oh, man, you're a good writer.

00:49:51   That's a good line.

00:49:52   That one just came to me, and I just felt like I had to do a live reading right here,

00:49:56   right now for it.

00:49:57   But yeah, I feel the same way.

00:50:00   The 16-inch just feels--

00:50:02   I love writing on it.

00:50:04   For some reason, I'm just like--

00:50:06   and it's not for some reason.

00:50:08   I will use my other air for some of my other work stuff

00:50:11   'cause it has all my programs on it and stuff,

00:50:15   like expenses or whatever,

00:50:16   I just kinda always go back to it.

00:50:17   But if I'm writing, I've written the last,

00:50:21   I don't know, last six months,

00:50:22   five months of columns, scripts.

00:50:24   I've worked on this long video project,

00:50:26   all been on the 16-inch air.

00:50:28   - I think, and it's funny because--

00:50:32   - I'm sorry, 16-inch MacBook Pro, not air.

00:50:34   - Well, it's the only 16-inch product,

00:50:36   So I knew what you were talking about.

00:50:38   It seems like so long ago, and I mention this all the time,

00:50:43   but I can't help but do it when I go to,

00:50:46   well, when I used to go to a coffee shop

00:50:49   or I'd be going through an airport or walking,

00:50:52   like I'm on an airplane and I'm traveling somewhere

00:50:55   and I have to go to the restroom and I walk back.

00:50:58   I just look at what people are using

00:51:00   and I always, you know, I just see, like, oh, there's--

00:51:02   - Me too, yeah.

00:51:04   It's one of those things Apple is secretive about

00:51:08   for competitive reasons.

00:51:09   They don't break down the model numbers and say,

00:51:12   67% of our MacBooks were MacBook Airs

00:51:16   and 33% were MacBook Pros and the MacBook Pros were split

00:51:21   this way between the big one and the small one.

00:51:23   They don't tell you.

00:51:24   They just say, they don't even tell you MacBooks.

00:51:26   They don't even break down portables versus desktops anymore.

00:51:29   They just say, we sold four million Macs last quarter

00:51:32   and that's it.

00:51:34   But eyeballing it when we used to be able to go out

00:51:37   and see other people and what they're using,

00:51:40   I just feel like Apple did tell us

00:51:44   when the new MacBook Air came out,

00:51:47   those three very long weeks ago,

00:51:49   they did tell us that it was their most popular Mac.

00:51:52   But I feel like even that is underselling

00:51:56   by what degree the MacBook Air is the most popular Mac.

00:52:01   It's just anecdotally, it just feels like

00:52:06   that is what people think of when they think of a Mac.

00:52:08   If you're gonna buy a Mac,

00:52:09   people just, they don't even look at anything else.

00:52:11   They know they don't wanna spend the extra money

00:52:13   on a MacBook Pro.

00:52:15   They know they want a portable for the most part.

00:52:17   And if you don't, if you really do want a desktop,

00:52:20   you can get the iMac and it's a great machine.

00:52:22   And I'm sure they, it's not like they sell no iMacs,

00:52:25   but for the most part, most people want a laptop.

00:52:27   And if they want a laptop, they want the Air.

00:52:29   and it's so easy to eyeball it

00:52:32   because of the teardrop shape, right?

00:52:34   You don't have to get real close and creep on somebody.

00:52:37   It's a very distinctive profile, and you can see it.

00:52:42   And it's been, for something that's so popular

00:52:47   and so essential to so many people's lives,

00:52:50   it has been such a very strange transition

00:52:53   to go from the old pre-retina MacBook Airs

00:52:56   when they were recommendable,

00:52:58   like five, six, seven years ago.

00:53:01   - I mean, I spent half my career recommending that.

00:53:03   - Right, and it's just been a very strange transition.

00:53:06   And I don't think that the 2018 MacBook Airs were bad,

00:53:11   and especially when they did the

00:53:14   interim third generation butterfly switch update,

00:53:21   which, again, to give you credit,

00:53:24   I think was largely inspired internally

00:53:27   by the, I called it last year the column of the year.

00:53:32   I still think it's gonna go down,

00:53:33   it should probably get credited

00:53:35   as the personal technology column of the decade.

00:53:38   - Oh, I appreciate that.

00:53:40   That's the award.

00:53:42   I don't know if they, they probably didn't submit it

00:53:44   for any awards at the journal,

00:53:45   but this is the award that matters the most to me, John,

00:53:47   so thank you.

00:53:48   Can you send me a Gruber?

00:53:50   Is like a Gruber award a thing?

00:53:51   You should do that.

00:53:53   Send me a Gruber.

00:53:54   It's a 3D printed bust of you.

00:53:59   - Would it be a bust of me or would it be just

00:54:01   like a sphere with a star on it?

00:54:03   - Oh yeah, it could be your favicon, sure.

00:54:06   Maybe it's the size of a favicon.

00:54:09   - Oh yeah, it's tiny.

00:54:11   You can lose it.

00:54:12   - Yeah.

00:54:13   - It's like the size of a--

00:54:14   - It's a little tiny pin.

00:54:15   It could be an earring.

00:54:17   You could tie pins for men, earrings for women.

00:54:20   Or men, if you wear a earring.

00:54:22   - Yeah, like a jelly bean.

00:54:24   - Yeah, you have such dedicated listeners.

00:54:26   I bet you people after they listen to this ask for that.

00:54:29   - Yeah.

00:54:30   So I do, you know, especially after the post Joanna's,

00:54:35   you know, what was the headline?

00:54:38   What was the, I always forget.

00:54:39   - I mean, it was missing letters.

00:54:41   Apple still hasn't fixed your MacBook keyboard

00:54:44   or something like that.

00:54:45   - Right, and you know, the online version, you know,

00:54:48   not to reiterate the whole thing,

00:54:49   but you got the development team

00:54:51   at the wallstreetjournal.com

00:54:52   to write some JavaScript software

00:54:54   so that people could adjust the sliders

00:54:56   and by default all the Es were missing

00:54:58   and half the Ss or something.

00:55:00   And then you could, if you really couldn't even read it,

00:55:02   you could adjust it with sliders

00:55:04   and get the missing letters back in.

00:55:06   - Yeah. - It wasn't a bad key,

00:55:09   it wasn't a bad MacBook Air.

00:55:11   And once they went retina,

00:55:13   and yeah, it was a little too expensive,

00:55:14   and yeah, the keyboard wasn't great

00:55:16   even with the third generation thing,

00:55:17   but it was all right.

00:55:18   And you could say, well,

00:55:19   if you really need a new MacBook Air,

00:55:20   you can get this one.

00:55:21   It wasn't like you would unrecommend it,

00:55:26   but now it just feels like, boy,

00:55:28   you can really recommend this to everybody

00:55:30   because they've gotten back down to the $999 starting price

00:55:34   and it's a good config.

00:55:35   The $999 MacBook Air is a pretty good laptop

00:55:40   for an awful lot of people.

00:55:42   There's, you know--

00:55:43   - And for $256 starting now on storage, it's great.

00:55:47   It's a great deal.

00:55:48   It is, it really is.

00:55:51   And I wonder what some of the motivation was for Apple

00:55:54   to drop the price back and to drop that storage back.

00:55:57   Was it a little bit of,

00:55:59   well, we know this is the thing that sells the most

00:56:01   and we wanna juice that and we wanna get more people,

00:56:03   these in the hands of more people.

00:56:04   They even did that education deal, right?

00:56:06   It's 8.99 for education.

00:56:09   Was it also like, eh, we know this last one,

00:56:12   we kinda messed up, so maybe we make it,

00:56:15   this is my just thought is a little bit like,

00:56:17   if someone's gonna buy a new computer

00:56:19   'cause they hate that keyboard,

00:56:20   well, maybe is it a little bit easier for them to buy this

00:56:22   if we drop this price a little bit?

00:56:23   I highly doubt that was any motivation,

00:56:25   but I, in my mind, like to think

00:56:28   they were thinking that or something.

00:56:30   - Yeah, and with the keyboard, it seems anecdotally

00:56:34   that once they got to that final generation

00:56:37   of the butterfly switch keyboard,

00:56:39   they did fix the reliability issues,

00:56:43   or at least to the point where it really does seem,

00:56:47   looking at my email from people who read the site,

00:56:50   and I'm sure you did too,

00:56:53   after you emphasized it so many times.

00:56:55   You got a lot of reader--

00:56:56   - So much, so much.

00:56:57   - It really does seem like the final generation

00:57:00   of the butterfly switch thing was as good

00:57:02   as that fundamental design was going to get,

00:57:04   and they fixed, and the reliability issues

00:57:08   were above and beyond anything else,

00:57:10   because it just seems mind-boggling

00:57:14   that you couldn't rely on your keyboard on these devices.

00:57:17   They fixed that, but it still, it just didn't feel great.

00:57:21   It didn't sound good.

00:57:22   And you've written about the sound.

00:57:24   Ever since they first came out,

00:57:25   like with the 12-inch MacBook that didn't--

00:57:28   - I hate the sound.

00:57:29   - It just, it, hmm.

00:57:31   - And they fixed that here too.

00:57:32   I mean, they really did.

00:57:34   When the 16-inch came out, I did a sound comparison

00:57:38   and comparing sounds of keyboards.

00:57:40   And I mean, this is so much quieter

00:57:42   and it's so much more satisfying to listen to.

00:57:44   Yeah, yeah, I mean, it will be interesting, I think,

00:57:51   to see where they go from here,

00:57:54   because I've always had this obsession with the Air.

00:57:56   It sort of was the highlight of my career at the Verge

00:58:01   where I would tell people,

00:58:02   this is the best Windows computer,

00:58:04   and I sort of became known in a meme way for saying,

00:58:08   well, for $200 more, you can always get the MacBook Air.

00:58:10   And honestly, if you asked me to this date,

00:58:12   what I think is the best Apple gadget,

00:58:14   I will say the MacBook Air,

00:58:15   because I just don't think there was ever a laptop

00:58:19   at a time, especially, was it 2000,

00:58:22   probably around 2014-ish timeframe,

00:58:27   that there was just no better mix of portability

00:58:32   and performance and endurance than the MacBook Air.

00:58:35   And it sort of was like this thing you hold up

00:58:36   and you're like, this is the best computer there is.

00:58:40   it's probably not gonna get much better.

00:58:42   Or I at least had said that for many years.

00:58:44   And so now we're at this point where I keep thinking about

00:58:46   like what's next, I've always thought about

00:58:48   like what's next for the Air.

00:58:50   And I thought it was really interesting

00:58:53   that they announced the Air and the Pro the same day

00:58:56   and the Pro with the keyboard, with the Magic Keyboard.

00:58:59   And for me, it kind of, I was gonna do my review

00:59:02   sort of comparing the two and thinking about like,

00:59:04   well, what do you buy, which one?

00:59:06   And it really mostly just came down to,

00:59:07   I was like, you know, people still wanna buy an Air,

00:59:09   they wanna buy an Air, if people wanna buy an iPad,

00:59:12   they're probably looking at the Pro.

00:59:14   But I do really put the two side by side

00:59:16   and wonder to myself, these two have to converge

00:59:19   at some point, because it just,

00:59:23   there's so many overlapping use cases for them.

00:59:29   - It is a very strange strategy.

00:59:33   I don't think they have to.

00:59:35   Like, I feel like at the highest level,

00:59:37   it feels like they have to converge

00:59:39   because they're so similar and they even, like you said,

00:59:42   they even, you know, in just two products

00:59:45   that they announce at the same time

00:59:47   and they're both, you know,

00:59:49   if you look at the 12.9 inch iPad Pro,

00:59:53   it's effectively a 13 inch screen.

00:59:55   I mean, it's 12.9 inches.

00:59:56   It's a tenth of an inch difference diagonally.

00:59:59   And they've, the big selling point

01:00:02   for the iPad announcement was this magic keyboard accessory

01:00:06   that turns it, we don't have it in our hands yet,

01:00:09   but it's the one thing,

01:00:11   it's what made writing the iPad review so hard

01:00:14   is that the one thing everybody wanted to hear about

01:00:16   and the thing I most wanted to play with

01:00:17   is the thing that's not coming out until quote unquote May.

01:00:20   And-- - And that's actually why

01:00:23   I didn't write the review or do the comparison right now.

01:00:26   - And it turns the iPad into a laptop.

01:00:29   I mean, and they keep saying they can,

01:00:32   that it's a touch first platform

01:00:35   and it doesn't take away from touch at all,

01:00:38   but it's a laptop, right?

01:00:41   And they even mentioned that it is, in plain English,

01:00:46   the magnetic attachment is secure enough

01:00:50   and the way that it's weighted is secure enough

01:00:53   that they emphasized when we talked to them

01:00:58   that you can use it on your lap.

01:01:00   You can sit on a train

01:01:03   when wherever we're allowed to ride on pins again

01:01:06   and put it on your lap.

01:01:07   And you could, you know, they released commercials

01:01:11   and they showed people sitting in a park

01:01:14   and just sitting on the, you know,

01:01:15   like sitting on the grass with the,

01:01:18   or on their bed or something like that

01:01:20   with it in laptop configuration on their lap.

01:01:23   And so you think, well,

01:01:25   how can you have two different platforms

01:01:27   that are the same fundamental form factor?

01:01:31   But then when you really look at the details, I don't know,

01:01:33   I don't see the convergence, I really don't.

01:01:35   I don't see the Mac platform converging

01:01:39   with iPad OS in any way.

01:01:41   - Yeah, and I think, I've thought about my use cases

01:01:45   and I use such specialized apps for certain things

01:01:47   where I say, okay, that I couldn't go to the iPad

01:01:50   and if I just needed to do lighter work,

01:01:53   I could use the Air, and then maybe I could have a desktop

01:01:56   at home or something, I have odd computing needs, obviously.

01:02:01   But for most people using the Air,

01:02:05   and the people we recommend the Air to,

01:02:07   what do they do with it?

01:02:08   - Email, the web, social media, right?

01:02:15   - And why then, why not the iPad for those things?

01:02:19   - I don't know.

01:02:20   It is a very strange situation to be in.

01:02:28   I don't know if I accept it through cognitive dissonance

01:02:33   or what.

01:02:36   I'm willing to accept it because I don't think either one,

01:02:41   either platform should get a whole lot more like the other.

01:02:46   I know I've been more critical this year in my writing

01:02:50   about iPad OS and the multitasking interface in particular.

01:02:55   in particular. And the knee-jerk response to that from people who really love multitasking on the

01:03:05   iPad and have, you know, put their professional life much more or entirely on, in some cases,

01:03:13   and I believe you, I believe these people who spend, you know, use their iPad as their main

01:03:17   work computer. And the knee-jerk response to my criticism is to assume that what I'm

01:03:24   saying is that I want the iPad OS to get more like Mac OS and do things the Mac OS way at

01:03:32   the interface level. And that's, I don't think I ever wrote that. If I did, I didn't mean

01:03:36   to, that that was bad writing. And it's not what I mean. But I do think that the iPad

01:03:44   OS, for me at least, has to be able to do things, doesn't have to do it the way the

01:03:49   Mac does it, but I want to be able to do it the same way.

01:03:53   You want to get it done.

01:03:55   Right.

01:03:56   And I don't want to get confused about things that I find confusing on iPad OS multitasking.

01:04:02   It doesn't have to be done, and I think it would be wrong.

01:04:05   I will go so far as to say it would be wrong to copy the Mac way of doing things.

01:04:11   What I would like is for Apple to come up with a way that's better than the Mac way

01:04:16   of doing it.

01:04:17   Like, wouldn't that be so terribly exciting if there was a way, a multitasking interface

01:04:22   that was better than the Mac way of doing things and arranging things?

01:04:30   And conversely, I certainly don't think, I feel even stronger the other way, that I don't

01:04:35   think that Mac OS should get more like iPad OS in terms of the way, I mean it just doesn't

01:04:43   even make any sense to me that you would want to get rid of Windows, overlapping Windows that you

01:04:50   can resize to any degree on the Mac. So I just don't see how they converge further. And I know

01:04:56   that some people are going to want to immediately say, "Well what about Catalyst?" Catalyst, the

01:05:00   whole point is convergence where you can take your iPad apps and use the catalyst frameworks

01:05:06   in the latest version of Mac OS and now you can have one app that is adjusted, you know,

01:05:13   the developers can do work and now you've got this app that is the iPad app and now it's a Mac

01:05:18   app at the same time but that's still it's not really convergence and the the catalyst apps that

01:05:25   do it the best are the most different between the iPad and the Mac versions, and the developers

01:05:31   have to do the most work.

01:05:33   And if it's working out well, ideally it's still a lot less work and a lot more familiar

01:05:38   to the developer than doing a wholly separate Mac app and iPad app.

01:05:44   But it still is not just click a checkbox in Xcode and out comes a Mac app and it looks

01:05:50   and works in the way Mac users expect a Mac app to work.

01:05:54   - Yeah, I mean, maybe converge is the wrong word.

01:06:02   Maybe replace.

01:06:03   - Right, right.

01:06:05   And that more and more people,

01:06:06   if they're looking to spend somewhere between

01:06:10   a thousand and $1,200 on an Apple device

01:06:14   that you can use as a laptop.

01:06:20   - Then they buy an iPad Pro.

01:06:22   - Right, and get the Magic Keyboard for when they do it.

01:06:26   And it is, if you're going to have just one $1,100,

01:06:31   let's just say $1,100 or, I guess, no, I guess, yeah.

01:06:36   - Yeah.

01:06:37   - Well, it's somewhere in that range.

01:06:39   - If you get the Pro, the 12.9 with the Magic Keyboard,

01:06:43   I think you're at 14.

01:06:44   - Yeah, and if you get the 11, it's smaller.

01:06:47   - That's gonna drop.

01:06:48   That will drop over time.

01:06:49   - Yeah, hopefully, I would think so.

01:06:51   Certainly the iPad portion should drop over time.

01:06:56   But it's certainly a more flexible device

01:07:00   because you can do things with it.

01:07:02   The two-in-one form factor where you can use it as a laptop

01:07:06   when you're doing laptop-y things

01:07:08   and you want to have a trackpad

01:07:10   for things that are great with a trackpad.

01:07:13   And then that you can just,

01:07:17   You don't have to really disconnect cables or anything.

01:07:20   You just unmagnetically snap it from the thing,

01:07:24   and now you've got an ebook reader,

01:07:25   and you can just sit there on your couch and lean back,

01:07:29   and you don't have to worry about the keyboard,

01:07:31   and just sit there and flip through a book or webpages

01:07:35   or whatever you do,

01:07:36   the thing most people have done with an iPad

01:07:40   for most of the time.

01:07:42   - Yeah, it's like the ultimate flexibility,

01:07:44   and I think that's, maybe that'll also be

01:07:47   the driving force of people to say,

01:07:49   you know, I don't need all of that,

01:07:50   I just need a plain old laptop

01:07:52   and then they'll still get the air.

01:07:53   And maybe they just keep 'em around forever and ever,

01:07:55   until, at least until we are out of house arrest.

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01:09:39   you're gonna need your audio editor

01:09:42   to edit out my stomach rumbling.

01:09:44   (Dave laughs)

01:09:46   I legit believe that it's probably being picked up on.

01:09:49   - Are you?

01:09:52   - My eating schedule's so out of sorts.

01:09:54   I made matzo pizza with my son at 11 o'clock

01:09:59   and now I'm starving.

01:10:01   - I tend to be a, in addition to my regular night owl,

01:10:09   sleeping schedule, I tend to eat most of my calories

01:10:12   later in the day.

01:10:13   But at-- - Same.

01:10:14   - But this whole thing has thrown me off,

01:10:16   and I will go, I'll realize, I'm like,

01:10:18   "Wait, have I eaten in like 16 hours?

01:10:20   "Maybe that's why I'm hungry?"

01:10:21   (laughs)

01:10:23   - Right, I mean, that's, I probably,

01:10:26   like I didn't eat breakfast, I had something to eat at 11,

01:10:28   and now I'm like, "Okay, it's time for lunch."

01:10:31   Or dinner, or linner, whatever.

01:10:33   - We just eat at any time.

01:10:36   There's no time.

01:10:38   There's no time.

01:10:39   And we're certainly not running out of food,

01:10:42   is the other thing, which is a great thing,

01:10:44   but we just have these constant, like, Instacart

01:10:48   or Fresh Direct deliveries

01:10:49   that we're just trying not to lose spots, so.

01:10:51   - Yeah, yeah, same here.

01:10:53   Have you seen this thing?

01:10:55   Again, I think most people have elevated their humaneness.

01:11:02   People have written about it,

01:11:07   that people are saying hello to each other more

01:11:10   when you're out or you just, you smile.

01:11:12   It's like, there's just this collective sense

01:11:15   that we're all in it together

01:11:16   and people are being nice to each other

01:11:19   to the best that we can

01:11:20   while maintaining our social distancing.

01:11:22   And then when you find out that there are people

01:11:26   who are taking advantage of the situation,

01:11:28   you're like, what the hell is wrong with you?

01:11:29   I just read this story last night

01:11:30   about people who are offering big Instacart tips.

01:11:37   - Oh yeah, I saw this.

01:11:38   - And then after the stuff gets dropped off at their door,

01:11:42   you can apparently, Amy handles the Instacart stuff,

01:11:45   but apparently you can like revoke the tip afterwards,

01:11:48   and then they just take the whole thing away.

01:11:51   It's like you are a garbage person.

01:11:53   That, I mean, you might as well, that's like walking,

01:11:57   you're just stealing money from somebody.

01:11:59   That's like, if you are, well, remember,

01:12:02   do you remember restaurants?

01:12:03   (laughing)

01:12:04   - I remember that.

01:12:05   - Like if you pay your check and you're like,

01:12:08   get up from the table and you're walking out

01:12:10   and you see that there's another,

01:12:12   some other table had left a cash tip

01:12:15   and you just pick it off the table

01:12:16   as you walk off the, as you leave the restaurant.

01:12:20   Yeah, that's-- - No, unless your Instacart

01:12:23   delivery person punched you in the face.

01:12:26   - Right.

01:12:27   - Came to the door, took out your bottle of seltzer

01:12:31   and smacked you in the face with it,

01:12:33   That's the only reason to revoke your tip right now.

01:12:36   - It is, and I mentioned before,

01:12:40   like thank God for the internet

01:12:41   and how would we be doing this 30 years ago

01:12:43   or 25 years ago or even with the internet,

01:12:46   but before some of these services,

01:12:48   like Instacart is, and these delivery services

01:12:53   are helping us collectively maintain social distancing.

01:12:58   I really do, I want these people to be paid appropriately.

01:13:03   I want them to be tipped well.

01:13:04   And I know there've been some walkouts and stuff,

01:13:07   and the labor issues are serious.

01:13:09   And I really hope they get worked out

01:13:11   so that the people who are willing to do this work

01:13:14   are getting compensated appropriately.

01:13:16   But I think collectively it is good for us

01:13:19   that if one person can do the shopping

01:13:22   for 10, 15, 20 other people in the course of a day,

01:13:26   that's better because there are fewer people

01:13:28   out circulating and maintaining the distance.

01:13:32   I don't know what we would do.

01:13:33   I mean, I guess we would all be going to the grocery store

01:13:37   on a usual schedule, and it just seems so contrary

01:13:40   to what we're supposed to be doing collectively

01:13:47   to help flatten the curve.

01:13:50   - Yeah, we would all be going,

01:13:52   and they already have certain times

01:13:55   for certain types of people,

01:13:56   for people above a certain age, or if you're pregnant.

01:14:00   I mean, I would assume some of those restrictions

01:14:02   be even worse. Because this has allowed, I mean at least in major metropolitan areas

01:14:08   like we live, it's really allowed people to decrease the amount of traffic, or it's allowed

01:14:13   these stores to decrease the amount of traffic.

01:14:16   We haven't been, I think, is it a week or two? I'm actually forgetting if it's a full

01:14:22   week at this point or two weeks. I think it's a full week where nobody here, we haven't

01:14:26   done any shopping outside the house.

01:14:29   - Yeah, for me, it's that long too.

01:14:31   I do go to my local coffee shop still

01:14:33   'cause they have takeout and it's just sort of a window

01:14:36   and it's easy to do and I feel like I'm supporting them.

01:14:40   But I haven't been to, I mean, I went to Target

01:14:42   about a week and a half ago, it was my wife's birthday

01:14:44   and I wanted to get her some stuff.

01:14:47   But other than that, no.

01:14:48   - Let me see here, I can look on my Apple Pay,

01:14:52   my Apple Wallet and I can see

01:14:54   when I actually charged something, 327.

01:14:59   So March 27th, I went to Trader Joe's.

01:15:01   So how many, how long ago was March 27th?

01:15:05   That feels like a year ago.

01:15:07   - That was at least 13, 14 days ago, right?

01:15:12   - Yeah, yeah, so it's been like two weeks

01:15:14   since I did shopping outside the house.

01:15:17   I got a pizza delivered the other day,

01:15:22   and it felt like I was eating like a Roman emperor.

01:15:28   It just felt like, oh my God,

01:15:32   and it's like the easiest thing in the world.

01:15:33   Whoever really worries about getting a pizza delivered,

01:15:36   but it just felt like, well, here's something

01:15:38   I wouldn't really be able to make at home.

01:15:40   You can make pizza at home.

01:15:42   We do make pizza at home sometimes,

01:15:43   but it's a good crust that you get.

01:15:46   I'm not a expert.

01:15:49   I have friends who are expert pizza makers at home,

01:15:51   and they're Instagramming their pizzas,

01:15:53   and I'm like, oh, I wish I'd gotten on team

01:15:56   learn how to make good pizza at home.

01:15:57   (laughing)

01:15:59   I'm keeping Passover right now,

01:16:01   so we're making matzah pizza.

01:16:03   If you'd like my recipe for that delicious meal,

01:16:06   I'm happy to pass it on to you.

01:16:07   It's basically a cracker with tomato sauce

01:16:10   and melted cheese.

01:16:11   - I am not Jewish, but I love matzah bread.

01:16:17   Loved it.

01:16:18   One of my best friends in grade school was Jewish,

01:16:21   and I won't use his name because it would be ratting him out.

01:16:26   He was not a fan, and so I would trade him packed lunch.

01:16:30   I used to pack a lunch and I would trade him

01:16:33   like my regular bread for some of his matzo bread

01:16:35   during Passover.

01:16:37   I love it.

01:16:38   I just feel like I had you.

01:16:40   - Says every non-Jew and every Jew is like, "No."

01:16:45   - Yeah, I know, I know.

01:16:46   - No, again, no, we like it like the first two days.

01:16:49   Like we're still in like the early section here

01:16:51   and I usually keep it.

01:16:52   I really try to keep this tradition

01:16:54   and try to keep the whole eight days with no bread

01:16:56   or really anything that has, well, yeah,

01:17:01   I won't say I keep it all, but I do a pretty good job.

01:17:05   Like I won't eat chips and I won't eat wraps

01:17:09   and stuff like that.

01:17:09   - Yeah, it's a lot easier to say as a non-Jew

01:17:12   when you're just sneaking, taking it here and there

01:17:14   as opposed to maintaining it over the whole length

01:17:18   of Passover, but.

01:17:19   - Yeah.

01:17:20   Well, yeah, no, it sounds like we're doing really,

01:17:24   we're pretty good citizens keeping our social distancing.

01:17:28   - Yeah.

01:17:29   It is weird.

01:17:32   And I know I've gotten feedback from people

01:17:35   and people wanna hear more podcasts.

01:17:39   Some people I've gotten and I don't know how not

01:17:43   to talk about it.

01:17:44   Like there've been a few people

01:17:45   and it's one of those things where you can't please everybody

01:17:47   and I know, I mean with the readership of your column

01:17:50   at the Wall Street Journal,

01:17:51   You certainly know it even better than I do.

01:17:54   And I know that there's at least some people

01:17:57   who would like for me to do the podcast

01:18:00   without even mentioning it,

01:18:01   'cause they kinda wanna get their mind off it,

01:18:02   but I don't know how to do that.

01:18:04   Like, it's, you know, I can't not mention it.

01:18:08   And so I apologize if that's what you would prefer,

01:18:11   but I just can't help but talk about

01:18:14   the way that technology intersects

01:18:17   with this great quarantine.

01:18:21   - Yeah, I mean, everything I've written for the last month

01:18:24   or so or more has had to do with it

01:18:26   because I was also just been doing a lot on work from home

01:18:30   and that stuff has really been so useful to our readers

01:18:32   and people who are just honestly not set up

01:18:35   with the right tech tools to work from home.

01:18:36   And I've been doing constant tips for our newsletters

01:18:39   and I do a daily tip for our newsletters and our podcasts

01:18:41   and people have been loving it.

01:18:43   But also I'm like, at one point I'm like,

01:18:44   "What, like how much is too much here?"

01:18:46   And I've been struggling with that.

01:18:47   And I've struggled with that with the air review,

01:18:49   which was, I can't review this in a vacuum.

01:18:52   I can't just ignore how I used this system

01:18:56   and under what conditions.

01:18:57   And that's how I came to that webcam part of that review.

01:19:00   And people said, oh, she just has to whine about more things.

01:19:03   And I was like, well, no, I'm whining about the thing

01:19:06   that I have been using the most now.

01:19:07   And I really tried to balance that,

01:19:10   at least the written review about both of them.

01:19:12   The video, I obviously focused on the webcam.

01:19:14   And I did a piece yesterday because over the weekend,

01:19:17   I woke up on Saturday morning,

01:19:19   And this was, you know, last Friday was Trump

01:19:22   and CDC's recommendation that we all wear masks.

01:19:25   Or we start to wear masks.

01:19:26   And I woke up on Saturday morning

01:19:27   from two emails from reporters,

01:19:29   couple emails from readers being like,

01:19:31   "My face ID doesn't work with a mask."

01:19:33   And I sort of said, "Okay, well, just do this.

01:19:37   Enter an alternate appearance."

01:19:39   And they were like, "That doesn't work."

01:19:41   And I started playing around with it,

01:19:42   and I was like, "All right, I'm gonna write

01:19:43   a little bit about this."

01:19:44   And is it a first world problem?

01:19:47   Absolutely.

01:19:48   we all can put in our passwords.

01:19:50   But it was an interesting story to go down the road

01:19:53   of looking at how our faces are being read from,

01:19:56   or how our faces are not being able to be read

01:19:59   with a mask on and how some people have gotten it.

01:20:01   And I found this woman who has been creating Face ID masks,

01:20:04   which are completely nuts.

01:20:06   - Oh, really?

01:20:07   - Yeah, yeah.

01:20:08   It's like, and I was like, you know what?

01:20:09   I'm gonna do this story because it's interesting.

01:20:12   We use this, I'm using it as a point

01:20:13   to talk a little bit about Face ID.

01:20:15   And yeah, I struggled.

01:20:17   I definitely struggle right now with what should I cover?

01:20:20   How can I be of most help to people?

01:20:22   I've also just been writing and doing stuff all the time,

01:20:27   so I don't really have time to think about it.

01:20:28   - So I-- - That's also better.

01:20:30   - So the face ID versus masks thing

01:20:32   is something I mean to write about,

01:20:35   I do wanna write about, I'm getting email about,

01:20:37   and the only reason I haven't written about it

01:20:39   is that I'm still thinking it through.

01:20:43   But how does a Face ID capable mask work?

01:20:47   What is the, what's the trick?

01:20:51   How does, I don't even understand how that would work.

01:20:53   - So I've done, this has been my last week of like,

01:20:56   not week, I just kind of crammed out

01:20:57   a lot of the reporting over the weekend

01:20:59   'cause I became so interested in it.

01:21:01   But basically, no, you cannot register your face

01:21:04   as an alternate appearance in Face ID with a mask.

01:21:08   It just says obstructed, right?

01:21:10   It says like, Face Obstructed, can't register.

01:21:13   Long story as you read in the piece,

01:21:16   some researchers in, they're in Hong Kong I believe,

01:21:21   or maybe they're mainland China,

01:21:23   they figured out if you fold the mask in half,

01:21:25   you can register your face.

01:21:27   And then you put the mask on and it could work.

01:21:30   That did not work for me.

01:21:31   It works with very success, honestly.

01:21:35   Then I found this woman who decided,

01:21:39   she had heard about this issue a couple months ago,

01:21:42   and she said, "Oh, I'm gonna just print my face on a mask,

01:21:46   "and then it'll work."

01:21:48   Then she realized, no, that won't work,

01:21:50   because Face ID and the whole TrueDepth system

01:21:53   is looking for a 3D,

01:21:56   I mean, really, it's looking for your face,

01:21:57   it's looking for--

01:21:58   - It's the same technology that's there to defeat me

01:22:01   holding up a photo of Joanna Stern

01:22:04   in front of my iPhone Face ID to log in as you.

01:22:09   - And that's exactly what I wrote in the piece,

01:22:11   which is like, there's a lot of irony here,

01:22:12   which is that Face ID was actually engineered.

01:22:14   You know, I did that piece back when the 10 came out

01:22:17   when I tried to get my face recreated in masks,

01:22:20   and it didn't work.

01:22:21   It's like the opposite here.

01:22:23   And so, yeah, then she figured out

01:22:26   that if she made a clay mold of a mouth and nose,

01:22:30   and then she went through this elaborate process,

01:22:32   you can watch it in the video,

01:22:33   and she made a mask with a nose and mouth,

01:22:37   and she then goes and registers that mask

01:22:40   as an alternate appearance with that, it works.

01:22:43   - Huh, I did not read that.

01:22:47   I will have to look for it.

01:22:49   - I mean, she did, and like, just for,

01:22:51   like this woman's awesome.

01:22:52   Her name is Danielle Baskin.

01:22:54   She's been doing, you know, I don't know

01:22:55   if you've heard of this other thing called quarantine chat

01:22:57   where you can call a random person and talk.

01:22:59   She's a product designer and sort of an artist

01:23:03   in San Francisco, and so she came up with this,

01:23:05   and she doesn't really plan to sell them right now.

01:23:07   She also makes a really good point.

01:23:09   It's just like, if I can get mask materials,

01:23:11   I'm gonna make them for people that need it right now.

01:23:14   But yeah, this works.

01:23:16   - I have to admit, I really feel like this whole thing is,

01:23:22   it's an exercise in empathy and examining your own biases.

01:23:28   I've been aware ever since Face ID first became

01:23:33   the replacement for Touch ID with the iPhone X,

01:23:36   now what, two and a half years ago,

01:23:38   that I'm certainly aware enough that in a lot of Asian countries, face mask wearing

01:23:49   in cold and flu season is common.

01:23:52   It's common as an allergen type thing.

01:23:57   It's considered polite if you yourself feel like you have a cold or something but not

01:24:03   sick enough that you want to stay home, that you wear a mask as a courtesy to others around

01:24:08   to lower the spreading.

01:24:10   I'm aware of that and I certainly,

01:24:17   I heard right from the get-go that,

01:24:19   hey, Face ID doesn't really work when you're wearing a mask

01:24:22   and people over here wear masks all the time.

01:24:25   And it wasn't that I dismissed it completely,

01:24:29   but I dismissed it as a concern to some degree

01:24:33   out of my own cultural bias,

01:24:35   where I sort of, and this,

01:24:39   I don't mean to sound dismissive,

01:24:42   but I'd sort of written off

01:24:44   the whole Asian face mask culture thing

01:24:46   as a bit of low-grade hypochondria.

01:24:50   - Yeah. - And it's,

01:24:54   just self-examining my own cultural bias,

01:24:56   it's like, hmm, now that I really think about it,

01:24:59   we're the ones who were wrong, clearly.

01:25:02   - For sure. - And as this,

01:25:04   this particular COVID-19 epidemic engulfed the world,

01:25:09   they must have been looking at how long it took us

01:25:14   in the US, in North America,

01:25:17   and in other European countries to start wearing masks

01:25:22   as though we were insane.

01:25:25   Because they could tell that surely wearing a mask

01:25:29   as you're out and about, however effective it is,

01:25:32   It has to be at least more effective

01:25:35   than not wearing a mask at all.

01:25:37   Even if it's 1% improvement,

01:25:39   it has to be some level of an improvement.

01:25:43   And everything that I've read about it

01:25:47   certainly suggests it's more effective than that.

01:25:50   We must have looked crazy going until the end of March

01:25:53   without doing it.

01:25:54   And now all of a sudden you look at Face ID

01:25:56   and you think, hmm, this is a problem.

01:25:59   And surely Apple must be considering this as well.

01:26:03   And as well as, I haven't actually tried it on my Pixel 4,

01:26:06   but Pixel has, the Pixel 4 has,

01:26:09   all sorts of other Android phones have--

01:26:11   - I tried it on the Samsung, I don't have the Pixel with me

01:26:13   and I did not wanna make a trip to the office for it

01:26:15   for this piece, so I had a Samsung here

01:26:17   and I had the same problem,

01:26:18   but it also wouldn't register with the mask on.

01:26:22   - Yeah, it doesn't work as a second face.

01:26:26   'Cause it needs more of your face to get,

01:26:29   some, you know, whatever it's doing for the idea.

01:26:31   And I will admit too, it's not just

01:26:33   Asian culture versus American culture.

01:26:36   I also got some very, at least,

01:26:40   it was a whole email thread,

01:26:42   but from a daring fireball reader

01:26:43   who's a surgeon here in America.

01:26:46   - Oh, this is in my piece, yeah, go on, but yeah.

01:26:48   - Well, and he wrote about it,

01:26:50   and he, you know, is an enthusiastic, you know,

01:26:53   obviously he's a daring fireball reader, he's into it,

01:26:56   and wrote me this whole thing about all the effort

01:26:58   he tried to get through to get his Face ID-powered,

01:27:01   you know, enabled phone to work with a surgical mask

01:27:04   and never really got a good,

01:27:06   it was like, ultimately came to the conclusion

01:27:08   that there's no good way to get this to work.

01:27:11   - No, I had the same exact experience.

01:27:12   So when I started doing some reporting on it,

01:27:15   that's what I started realizing.

01:27:16   And then I looked through my emails, I was like,

01:27:17   oh, this guy's a doctor.

01:27:18   And in the piece, in the written piece,

01:27:21   I mean, it kind of goes all over the place

01:27:23   'cause there was a lot to cover

01:27:24   and there's only so many words I can convince my editors

01:27:27   about face ID and face masks right now.

01:27:29   But they've been dealing with this

01:27:32   in the medical community for years.

01:27:35   And one of the doctors I interviewed said,

01:27:39   right now more than ever, it's actually a very big problem.

01:27:42   And he walked me through why.

01:27:43   It was because if he's in the operating room,

01:27:47   and right now there's limited PPE,

01:27:49   there's really limited supplies for them.

01:27:51   He's in the operating room,

01:27:52   and this is something I realized too,

01:27:55   a couple of weeks ago, my mom was in the hospital,

01:27:58   all of these hospitals run on phones at this point.

01:28:00   It was nuts to me, it was completely surprising to me

01:28:03   when I was with my mom there a couple of weeks ago.

01:28:06   And he says, "There's no pager system,

01:28:09   "there's no other way for another doctor in the hospital

01:28:11   "to get in touch with me, they have to text."

01:28:14   They use a, at this one, he specifically said,

01:28:16   "We use iPhones."

01:28:17   So if he's in the operating room,

01:28:19   or he's going into the cath lab or something,

01:28:21   he has to, he can't pull down his mask,

01:28:25   because right now that means he'd have to replace the mask

01:28:28   or make himself susceptible to other things in the room.

01:28:30   And so he doesn't want to pull down the mask

01:28:32   and he will also have gloves on

01:28:35   and doesn't want to contaminate the gloves.

01:28:36   So he often will ask the nurse or somebody else in the room,

01:28:39   they will tell them his password.

01:28:41   And then they have the password, they put it in,

01:28:44   and then he says he often changes his password.

01:28:47   I heard this from other people right now

01:28:50   in the medical community too,

01:28:51   because again, they don't wanna be taking on

01:28:53   and off the masks, and they don't wanna be touching

01:28:56   and contaminating more gloves and replacing the gloves.

01:28:59   - And again, outside the professional sphere,

01:29:04   there are more people now wearing gloves

01:29:07   as part of their personal protection going out.

01:29:11   I don't think it's as effective,

01:29:13   and I actually think that because of,

01:29:15   if you frequently wash your hands,

01:29:16   you might be better off just using your bare hands

01:29:19   and washing and using hand sanitizer very frequently.

01:29:22   But if you wanna wear gloves, you wear gloves,

01:29:24   but if you're wearing gloves and a mask,

01:29:26   you're no good with any of these

01:29:28   biometric authentication things.

01:29:30   - Yeah, no, in my piece, as you'll see,

01:29:33   the gloves work fine for putting your password in.

01:29:35   If you have rubber gloves,

01:29:36   it works completely fine on the touchscreen.

01:29:38   - Right, but it wouldn't work for Touch ID.

01:29:39   You're down to using the passcode.

01:29:43   - You're back to the passcode.

01:29:44   - Right, and it's funny because until,

01:29:48   I'm gonna guess about six months ago,

01:29:50   I just had a six digit numeric PIN number from my phone.

01:29:55   And at some point in one of these law enforcement

01:30:00   hacking into iPhone, like, oh,

01:30:04   and then there's this Israeli company that makes a device,

01:30:07   then they can go through, remember that,

01:30:10   and people were doing the math?

01:30:12   And they can't go through as many numbers as you think

01:30:15   because the security chip in the iPhone

01:30:20   that protects it only allows, at a technical level,

01:30:26   only allows like 12 attempts per second.

01:30:29   I think that's what it is.

01:30:32   12, which sounds like a lot,

01:30:35   but when you really wanna go through

01:30:36   the total number of six-digit passcodes possible,

01:30:42   12 per second isn't that great.

01:30:44   But if you increase to an alphanumeric one,

01:30:49   you don't need to have a crazy long password.

01:30:54   Like the way that you, the basic advice for how,

01:30:58   you're signing up for a new web experience

01:31:01   and you wanna create a strong password

01:31:03   and it's 27 characters long,

01:31:07   uppercase and lowercase and punctuation and numbers.

01:31:10   You don't need that with a phone to be very, very secure.

01:31:13   like a six or seven character password that uses just,

01:31:18   you know, could just be like all lowercase

01:31:22   and a punctuation character.

01:31:25   Just that number of characters puts you into like

01:31:29   27 years on average to crack your phone

01:31:32   or something like that, or even longer.

01:31:34   So you don't need-- - So you changed it?

01:31:35   - I changed it to a, you know, pretty simple,

01:31:37   not too hard to type in passcode on my phone.

01:31:42   I don't want to reveal too much.

01:31:46   - Tell me what it is.

01:31:48   Nobody will know.

01:31:49   - But it's not too hard.

01:31:50   It doesn't involve shifting to the various keyboards

01:31:53   on the phone very much.

01:31:54   - I'm looking to do that right now, honestly.

01:31:58   I'm looking at this.

01:31:59   - Ever since I did it, I realized how few times

01:32:02   I actually need to put the code in my phone.

01:32:05   But now that when I do go out, I'm wearing a mask,

01:32:10   And as this eases up, hopefully, in the weeks to come,

01:32:13   and I do go out more, but will be wearing a face mask,

01:32:18   I guess I'm gonna go back to a numeric passcode

01:32:21   because I'm gonna have to enter it

01:32:22   because you can't, just fundamental, basic,

01:32:26   all right, if you're gonna get on the team face mask

01:32:28   and wear a face mask when you go out,

01:32:30   you can't just lower it every time

01:32:32   you wanna get on your phone.

01:32:34   - No, that's exactly what I wrote in the piece.

01:32:36   I was like, that's a very bad idea

01:32:37   'cause then you're just gonna be touching your face

01:32:39   and that you wouldn't normally be touching your face

01:32:41   that way anyway, so don't do that.

01:32:43   - Right, and so-- - You know, just,

01:32:45   and to be clear in the piece, you should wear a mask.

01:32:48   If you, being, wearing a mask right now

01:32:50   is one of the nicest things you can do,

01:32:52   as you were saying before, right?

01:32:54   You're not only protecting yourself,

01:32:56   you're protecting other people, so.

01:32:57   - And you're removing the stigma.

01:32:59   So the previous advice here in the US

01:33:02   was you should only wear a mask

01:33:04   if you feel like you might have symptoms,

01:33:07   Or if you know that you have the cold or flu,

01:33:09   or if you think you have the COVID-19

01:33:12   but you have to go out anyway because whatever,

01:33:15   you live alone and nobody else can help you

01:33:18   get your prescription or your groceries or whatever,

01:33:21   wear a mask if you feel like you have anything.

01:33:24   Well, that stigmatizes the people

01:33:26   'cause then all of a sudden,

01:33:26   if the only people wearing masks are people who are sick,

01:33:29   then everybody looks, and I admit,

01:33:32   I think I even mentioned this on my show

01:33:34   like five weeks ago that I was out in the early days

01:33:38   of this, before we were quarantined,

01:33:41   I was talking to Federico Vitici, who lives in Italy,

01:33:44   and Italy was hit hard, but before it really erupted there,

01:33:47   it was just in the early stages of,

01:33:50   hey, Italy might have a problem.

01:33:52   I mentioned that I was out and I saw two people

01:33:56   wearing masks here in Philly,

01:33:58   and I thought it was like a little freaked out,

01:33:59   not like I walked to the other side of the street,

01:34:03   but I just thought, it was like one of the first things

01:34:05   I'd noticed where I was like,

01:34:06   "Hey, things are starting to get weird."

01:34:08   But then I thought to myself,

01:34:09   "Oh, are they sick?

01:34:10   "Do they feel sick?"

01:34:12   It is a stigma.

01:34:14   And if everybody, when you go out, you wear a mask,

01:34:17   removes the stigma, everybody feels comfortable

01:34:20   around other people in masks.

01:34:21   I mean, it's gonna take us collectively

01:34:24   some getting used to, but I feel like it's happening quickly.

01:34:28   - Yeah, it's funny, I mean, this is not technology related,

01:34:31   but it is that stigma, and it's definitely

01:34:33   this cultural shift.

01:34:34   I feel it, like when I go get this coffee,

01:34:37   I don't do it every day, but every couple days

01:34:39   when I go get my coffee, I wear my mask now, my gloves,

01:34:41   and that's when I sort of started noticing

01:34:43   the Face ID thing as well, and you know,

01:34:44   it's frustrating, but whatever.

01:34:46   You sort of feel like if you're wearing a mask

01:34:49   but somebody else is in, you can feel a little bit weird,

01:34:52   like, oh, I think you might be sick,

01:34:54   and like, I need to protect myself from you.

01:34:57   And that's sort of how I felt like

01:34:58   when I've been around other people

01:35:00   that are not wearing masks, like,

01:35:01   and you sort of even raise it, or you're like,

01:35:04   "You're gonna be offended that I put on my mask

01:35:06   "and you don't have one."

01:35:07   But the more people that wear it,

01:35:09   the less will feel that way.

01:35:11   - Yeah, definitely.

01:35:12   - Yeah, we won't feel like, "Oh, you might be sick,"

01:35:14   or "I'm scared that you're sick."

01:35:16   I mean, it's this whole new weird thing.

01:35:17   In fact, right before we had left the office,

01:35:19   there was, people were sort of starting to say,

01:35:23   "Well, he knows somebody who had it,

01:35:25   "and maybe we shouldn't go near them."

01:35:27   And it was this weird thing.

01:35:30   And it's, socially it can create this weird thing now

01:35:33   where you're like, oh, that person, you know,

01:35:34   it's like cooties, like, oh, that person,

01:35:36   maybe don't go near them.

01:35:38   And with the mask, it feels like, okay,

01:35:41   we have some semblance of like,

01:35:43   I respect that I'm preventing you

01:35:46   from getting sick from wearing this.

01:35:47   I mean, prevent is probably not the right word

01:35:49   'cause they're, again, some of these are not full on,

01:35:53   what are they, surgical masks,

01:35:55   they're not N95 masks, so they can't fully prevent.

01:35:59   But it gives that, I don't know,

01:36:02   that just camaraderie, I feel like.

01:36:05   - Yeah, a little bit of this, a little bit of that,

01:36:07   a little bit of the other thing, and it all adds up.

01:36:10   And like so many other things in life,

01:36:13   it's a good strategy, and it's not like,

01:36:17   oh, you're supposed to have one single thing

01:36:22   that is going to keep you from spreading it.

01:36:27   It's everything taken together.

01:36:29   Stay inside as much as you can.

01:36:31   When you do go out, maintain distance, wear a mask,

01:36:34   wash your hands all the time, use hand sanitizer

01:36:38   in addition to washing your hands.

01:36:40   Watch these videos and learn how poorly

01:36:44   you've been washing your hands your entire life.

01:36:46   And it all adds up and none of it is 100%

01:36:51   and if you're looking for 100%,

01:36:53   you're not paying attention to the way it's supposed to work.

01:36:56   - Yeah.

01:36:57   - The other thing too is I think it's a good point too,

01:37:02   where regardless of how effective your mask itself is,

01:37:06   whether, and again, let's assume most of us

01:37:09   don't have the N95 ones because the N95 ones are hopefully,

01:37:13   they're all going to the medical professionals

01:37:15   who desperately need them.

01:37:17   But regardless of the efficacy of the mask you have,

01:37:23   whether it's homemade or if you've got some paper masks

01:37:26   from a drug store.

01:37:27   It is, it is a, somebody who has gone out for like,

01:37:32   just constitutional walks while wearing one now,

01:37:35   it is a constant reminder that you've got one on.

01:37:38   It definitely makes me touch my face less,

01:37:41   because I realize, oh, I've got a mask,

01:37:42   I'm not supposed to touch my face.

01:37:44   Like, don't do it.

01:37:46   It's hot, you know?

01:37:50   I mean, one of my things that I didn't really--

01:37:51   - Summer's gonna be, summer's gonna be real fun.

01:37:55   I put a tin of Altoids by our stash of paper masks

01:37:59   because I realized after the first time I wore one,

01:38:02   I was like, oh, you wanna pop a mint in

01:38:06   before you put your mask on?

01:38:09   - I've had the same thing in the lead of my article.

01:38:11   I'm like, we have to get used to living in our bad breath.

01:38:14   We just have to.

01:38:16   - Maybe two, take two mints, really.

01:38:18   - See, that's a solution, and there are obviously solutions

01:38:22   around getting around the Face ID thing.

01:38:25   I mean, as I said in the piece,

01:38:26   it's like this is a very minor inconvenience,

01:38:29   but I do think it's interesting.

01:38:30   - Well, so I've rethought this.

01:38:32   So there've been rumors,

01:38:33   and I know there are Android phones

01:38:35   that take a dual biometric strategy

01:38:39   where they have a fingerprint sensor

01:38:41   and some kind of facial recognition thing.

01:38:45   And I had, until now, been sort of on the side,

01:38:51   you know, and there are rumors of Apple

01:38:53   putting Touch ID into the actual displays

01:38:57   in addition to Face ID, maybe.

01:39:00   And I had been thinking in terms of just simplicity,

01:39:06   it makes sense for there to be one thing,

01:39:08   and that it made sense that Apple switched

01:39:12   from Touch ID to Face ID with the iPhone X

01:39:16   and the success in iPhone XS and iPhone XR

01:39:21   and the iPhone 11 models since then,

01:39:24   because then there's only one thing to set up

01:39:28   when you're, you know, all right, I have a new phone,

01:39:30   what do I have to do?

01:39:31   You log into your iCloud and you give it permission

01:39:34   for this and then you set up your face ID

01:39:37   or if it's a different, if it's a phone with the button

01:39:41   and you do your touch ID and now you've got your touch ID

01:39:44   and then you're using your phone.

01:39:46   And it would be kind of, you know, it's an extra step

01:39:49   If there were both touch ID and face ID,

01:39:53   now you've gotta do two things.

01:39:54   And then which one do you use when you're like,

01:39:57   oh, I wanna purchase the thing, which one am I using?

01:40:00   I don't know, you have to make a decision or something.

01:40:03   Now that I'm going through this, I see it,

01:40:06   my eyes are open to the fact that more methods

01:40:10   of biometric authentication are better.

01:40:12   It would be better to have both.

01:40:17   - Although in this case, if you're wearing your gloves

01:40:18   in your mask that neither will help.

01:40:21   But yes, I agree.

01:40:22   And obviously there's these rumors

01:40:24   that they're gonna come out with this new smaller iPhone

01:40:27   and next, who knows now at this point, but soon.

01:40:31   And that has been apparently for the people

01:40:36   who have been against Face ID,

01:40:38   who've really still embraced the fingerprint sensor.

01:40:41   So there's clearly an audience

01:40:43   that really does still want that.

01:40:45   I mean, I always hear from them around iPhone review time.

01:40:48   Last year, I heard from so many people.

01:40:50   It was, yes, the size was a thing,

01:40:52   but so many people with the touch ID.

01:40:54   Preferring that, feeling more secure,

01:40:56   just don't wanna look at the phone, don't, you know,

01:40:59   many who don't also seem to understand the security of it,

01:41:02   I definitely hear from a fair share of people

01:41:04   who just don't seem to get it.

01:41:06   But yeah, there's this huge audience

01:41:09   that still wants to use their fingerprint.

01:41:10   - All right, hold that thought, we'll come back to it.

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01:41:59   or you wanna publish a podcast,

01:42:01   they have the CMS built in so you can put new posts

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01:42:12   So if you have the idea, and right now,

01:42:15   I'm not trying to tell you it's, you know,

01:42:18   but look, we're all at home.

01:42:19   I know a lot of people are sort of like doing,

01:42:23   it's almost like New Year's in April,

01:42:26   where it's like, well, I've been meaning to do blank

01:42:28   for a long time, and you're doing things around the house.

01:42:31   Like you've got a table that's always had one leg too short,

01:42:34   and now you're fixing it

01:42:36   so that the table doesn't wobble anymore.

01:42:38   Well, if one of those things in the back of your head

01:42:40   on your to-do list has been to update an old website

01:42:43   with something new or to build a brand new website

01:42:47   for something, Squarespace is a fantastic way to start.

01:42:51   It really is, yes, they are sponsoring the show

01:42:54   and I'm telling you about them right now

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01:42:57   if you came to me and said, hey John,

01:42:59   I need to get started with a new website, what should I do?

01:43:02   I would tell you to try Squarespace.

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01:43:06   You get a free trial and then after the free trial,

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01:43:23   Just remember that code, talk show.

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01:43:45   So Face ID, Touch ID, people not trusting it, I definitely think, and I know, I think

01:43:53   just sort of, I don't know, I have no inside information, nobody at Apple has told me like

01:43:58   anything about like when anything might be coming, either officially from Apple PR or

01:44:03   or unofficially from friends who work there.

01:44:05   I know nothing in terms of when this iPhone 9,

01:44:09   or some people seem to think it's based on some clues

01:44:14   of like screen protectors and stuff like that

01:44:16   that prematurely hit the market,

01:44:19   that it might just be called the iPhone SE again,

01:44:21   not even the SE2, they're just gonna reuse the name iPhone SE

01:44:26   but now it looks like an iPhone 8.

01:44:28   I suspect though it's coming next week.

01:44:32   There's a couple of rumor people who seem to think

01:44:35   it's coming next week.

01:44:36   I think it definitely was originally supposed to come

01:44:39   in March and it was delayed because the whole supply chain

01:44:43   got disrupted by a global pandemic that started in China.

01:44:47   And everybody remembers that when the first iPhone SE

01:44:53   shipped a couple years ago, it was surprisingly popular,

01:44:58   even to Apple, even to the point where Apple,

01:45:00   Tim Cook on the quarterly call,

01:45:02   like three months after it came out,

01:45:03   had to say, "Yes, we were surprised

01:45:05   "by the popularity of this product."

01:45:07   And you had to admit it,

01:45:09   because if you went to apple.com at the time

01:45:11   and tried to buy one, it was like six weeks shipping,

01:45:14   or three to four weeks or something like that.

01:45:17   Whereas most Apple products,

01:45:18   you just buy it and ding-dong, it shows up the next day.

01:45:21   - I have, I'm just searching my inbox,

01:45:24   'cause I have so many readers,

01:45:29   And I don't know if it's 'cause they skew

01:45:31   a little bit older, yes.

01:45:32   Many of my subscriber readers are older.

01:45:35   So many readers following the reviews

01:45:40   that I did in the fall of the new iPhones

01:45:42   were asking for this phone.

01:45:44   - Yeah.

01:45:45   - To the point where they were saying

01:45:46   they were thinking about going to Android

01:45:48   because they preferred,

01:45:50   it was a combo of the two things,

01:45:52   smaller and fingerprint sensor.

01:45:55   And I have to sift through a lot of these,

01:45:57   I mean, I just searched right now, iPhone SE,

01:45:59   and I get, yes, 65 responses just on the first page.

01:46:04   Well, 50 responses, another says 65.

01:46:08   I think this will be a, it is,

01:46:13   it's like people know that this phone is coming

01:46:15   and they're waiting for it, and they will buy it.

01:46:18   - I, and I, you know, I talk about my mom

01:46:21   somewhat frequently on the show,

01:46:25   And I don't mention her specifically as opposed to my dad.

01:46:29   I know there's like a trope that it's,

01:46:33   oh, you're grandmother, or in my case, my mom,

01:46:36   who is a grandmother, then you bring it up

01:46:38   because it's, you know, you're bringing up a woman

01:46:42   because you think they're the technically inept ones.

01:46:44   My mom is far more technically adept than my dad.

01:46:47   My dad doesn't even have an iPhone.

01:46:49   He just, when he, he texts and he has,

01:46:54   He does use iMessage, but he uses it from their iMac.

01:46:58   But when my dad texts me from a phone,

01:47:02   like when they're at a doctor or something like that,

01:47:04   he just texts from my mom's phone and says, "Dad here."

01:47:08   But he also just doesn't wanna spend the money.

01:47:11   He doesn't even wanna spend the money

01:47:13   like when my mom gets a new iPhone,

01:47:16   and she's waiting for this one.

01:47:18   She wants the one with the button

01:47:19   'cause she knows how to use it.

01:47:20   and he won't even take her old iPhone, which still works.

01:47:25   It just sort of is at the point

01:47:27   where she's had it for enough years

01:47:28   where it's sort of not a great battery life situation.

01:47:31   It's usable, and she doesn't use it a lot,

01:47:34   but she wants to get a new one.

01:47:35   He won't even use her old one

01:47:36   'cause he doesn't wanna spend whatever it costs,

01:47:39   15, $20, whatever it would cost to add another phone

01:47:42   to their phone line, doesn't wanna spend it.

01:47:44   Just won't do it.

01:47:46   But she's more technically adept than my dad by far.

01:47:49   She's much more clever than she gives herself credit for,

01:47:54   but she just feels like she's mastered her iPhone

01:47:57   and doesn't want to learn something new.

01:48:00   - Yep. - She just doesn't,

01:48:02   and she has me, and I'm, I think, a good son,

01:48:05   and I'll, you know, she could get a Face ID-based iPhone,

01:48:09   and I would talk her through everything she needed

01:48:12   to be talked through, and I know that she would get it

01:48:15   very quickly, I think Apple did a great job

01:48:17   by reinventing the fundamental interface where,

01:48:20   okay, that button that you used for everything, it's gone,

01:48:24   and now you just swipe up from the bottom

01:48:25   and you can kinda do everything

01:48:27   that you used to do with the button just by swiping up.

01:48:29   She would get it.

01:48:30   I know she would.

01:48:31   She doesn't wanna try, and she doesn't believe it.

01:48:35   - I have the same with my parents,

01:48:36   but mostly with these readers.

01:48:38   I'm now looking through it, and I have this one reader,

01:48:41   it's just like, he says,

01:48:43   "The home button is such a simple concept,

01:48:44   "but Apple doesn't seem to understand that."

01:48:47   I am sure that there are no seniors on their design team.

01:48:51   And then he signs it, I'm not gonna give his name,

01:48:53   Senior Citizen blank, his name.

01:48:56   Another person, again, two reasons I'm waiting

01:49:01   for this new phone, I refuse to give up my home button

01:49:04   is number one, two, facial recognition is not for me.

01:49:07   - But I get it. - So I'm super excited

01:49:09   just for this phone to help these people.

01:49:11   - Yeah, and I do think that that is,

01:49:14   and again, I don't know for a fact that Apple,

01:49:16   If there had been no global pandemic,

01:49:19   that they would have announced it in March,

01:49:21   but I strongly suspect that they would have,

01:49:24   that it might have been some sort of media event

01:49:27   of some kind where they would have done it alongside

01:49:29   the iPads and the MacBook Air maybe, or something.

01:49:33   I don't know, but I believe it that they were delayed,

01:49:35   and I think that one of the reasons

01:49:37   that they wanted to wait,

01:49:39   assuming that's true that it was delayed,

01:49:40   is they're anticipating this being very popular.

01:49:44   - And if it starts at 399 bucks

01:49:47   and it's got the modern A series chip from the iPhone 11s

01:49:52   and I think it's gonna be very popular.

01:49:55   And so I feel like they definitely didn't,

01:49:57   even if they could have announced it in March

01:49:59   and had it and said like,

01:50:01   "Oh, but it's gonna be available in three or four weeks."

01:50:04   They want this thing to be ready

01:50:05   'cause I think they're anticipating a large number of,

01:50:08   I think just like the original iPhone SE a couple years ago,

01:50:13   I think it's gonna be very popular.

01:50:15   - Yeah, and I mean, like I said, this is always,

01:50:17   when I review the new iPhones, there's always that crowd

01:50:20   that's like, I'm not the early adopter,

01:50:22   I do not want all of this new stuff, I want this,

01:50:26   I love my iPhone, I like these things about it,

01:50:29   I want it to stay the same, I want now a better camera

01:50:31   like the rest of the world and it to be faster

01:50:33   but everything else the same.

01:50:35   - Yeah. - And this is for them.

01:50:36   - And it-- - Like that, I mean,

01:50:38   - It's an-- - I mean, I guess

01:50:39   that's my review. - It's an unusual--

01:50:40   - Done. - It's an unusual position

01:50:42   Apple to be in, although maybe, you know, they kind of were in that position with iPods

01:50:47   15 years ago, but not even the iPod was never anywhere near as popular as the iPhone.

01:50:53   Like they're really in, the iPhone is so popular that there's only a handful of technologies

01:50:59   that have ever had that many users, you know.

01:51:03   I mean there's Microsoft Windows, certainly Google, Google search, you know, there's a

01:51:09   reason, number one, it's just brilliant that you just type google.com. It's still

01:51:14   one of the great technical marvels in the history of human civilization, the Google

01:51:18   homepage. It's just this one box with a button and the extra goofy "I got lucky"

01:51:24   button, and you type a question in there and you hit return and you get answers. It's

01:51:30   amazing! But there's a reason why Google, everything that changed about Google as a

01:51:35   a company in 20 years, there's a reason Google.com is still just a text box with a white background

01:51:41   and a button. It works and people are familiar with it. And the basic, I'm not saying that

01:51:48   Apple is going to have home button Touch ID iPhones forever. Probably not. Apple will

01:51:55   eventually, I think, move forward somehow. But I feel like the insane popularity of the

01:52:04   the iPhone to the level of reaching normal people

01:52:08   who once they're familiar with the thing,

01:52:10   and rightly so, this isn't me complaining about non-nerds

01:52:15   who won't just get with it and switch to a whole new

01:52:18   paradigm for getting around their phone.

01:52:20   I totally get it that a normal person who's become,

01:52:24   mastered their iPhone, why in the world would they want

01:52:26   something different?

01:52:27   All they want is, hey, if I could just get one

01:52:29   with better battery life and if the camera's better too,

01:52:31   that's great, but don't change anything.

01:52:33   - Right, and it feels like, I mean,

01:52:37   it will be interesting to see how Apple positions this,

01:52:39   but it feels like this is like the iPhone

01:52:42   that Apple doesn't wanna make,

01:52:44   but they do it or they're gonna do it

01:52:46   because they know people want it.

01:52:48   It always seems like Apple doesn't usually bend

01:52:53   to those situations, but maybe in this case,

01:52:57   they do know there's such a user base and audience for it.

01:53:02   - And maybe they just, I don't know.

01:53:05   I mean, it also seems, we don't know the size of the screen.

01:53:08   It seems like a lot of the reports point to it

01:53:10   actually being 4.7 and not four, like the current SE.

01:53:13   - Yeah, I think it's gonna be exactly the same size

01:53:16   as the iPhone 8, 4.7.

01:53:18   I think that if you show it side by side

01:53:20   with an iPhone 8 or an iPhone 7,

01:53:23   you won't be able to tell it apart

01:53:25   other than by turning it on and going to the settings about

01:53:29   to see what the hell it is.

01:53:32   So then that's gonna leave us the question

01:53:34   of why they have it.

01:53:35   - Well, I think it's, you know,

01:53:37   I think it's, I think it's because they can sell it for $3.99

01:53:42   and because the familiarity is going to be a selling point

01:53:48   to a whole ton of people, you know?

01:53:51   - But I just bought an iPhone 8 for a video I did

01:53:53   a couple weeks ago for 500 bucks, and it's the same size.

01:53:58   If it's presumably gonna be the same size as this,

01:54:00   then they cheap out on a couple of the different internals,

01:54:04   maybe on the camera, but otherwise it's the same.

01:54:08   - Yeah.

01:54:09   - Or maybe it's a little bit smaller,

01:54:10   or maybe they've engineered it so there's less of a bezel

01:54:13   and it's a smaller phone.

01:54:14   - Well, and I think it also is a thing

01:54:16   that like the previous iPhone SE,

01:54:18   it's not a product that's on an annual schedule.

01:54:22   It is something that they'll be selling.

01:54:25   Let's just say they call it the iPhone SE again.

01:54:28   That's the iPhone SE again.

01:54:30   (laughing)

01:54:31   That they might be selling the iPhone SE again

01:54:34   for the next two and a half, three years, who knows?

01:54:37   - Right, and then the eight goes away next year

01:54:40   when the new phones come out.

01:54:42   - Right, or maybe it goes away

01:54:43   when they debut this thing next week

01:54:46   or the week after or whenever it's going to be.

01:54:48   - I do feel like they might alter the design here

01:54:52   just to make it a little bit smaller.

01:54:54   - I don't know. - To hit that note.

01:54:58   I don't know.

01:54:59   - We'll see.

01:55:00   I don't think so though.

01:55:01   I think that the same way that the original iPhone SE

01:55:04   looked exactly like an iPhone 5S

01:55:07   is what they're gonna do with this.

01:55:09   - And the design might just be slightly different

01:55:13   and then it's got,

01:55:14   I'm just trying to imagine what the specs are

01:55:17   that are different from the 8 that's on shelves right now

01:55:20   for 500 bucks or whatever.

01:55:21   - Well, I think it'll have the A series chip,

01:55:24   the A13 from, I think, from the iPhone 11

01:55:28   and that would give it years of leg room

01:55:30   for software updates and stuff

01:55:32   and some kind of better camera

01:55:35   and better battery life through more efficient components

01:55:40   and that's it, and there you go.

01:55:42   - Right. - So here's my question.

01:55:44   My last thing I wanna talk about before we sign off

01:55:46   is going back to your comment earlier,

01:55:50   'cause this is what reminded me of it,

01:55:52   is that a big part of this is that if,

01:55:55   I'm pulling the $399 starting price.

01:55:58   That's just a guess, I don't know.

01:56:00   Maybe it's gonna start at $499.

01:56:01   Maybe $399's too optimistic.

01:56:03   But it's certainly going to be a brand new iPhone

01:56:06   that Apple's just released in 2020

01:56:08   with years ahead of it in software updates

01:56:11   and speed that'll be more than usable

01:56:15   for typical people for years to come

01:56:17   at a much, half the price of an iPhone 11, right?

01:56:23   or at least half the price of an iPhone 11 Pro.

01:56:26   Much lower price.

01:56:27   - Yeah, and hopefully like $100 less than the current eight,

01:56:30   which starts at, I'm just looking it up, was 450.

01:56:33   - Right, this is the big thing that sticks out to me

01:56:35   about the MacBooks, is the iPads, too,

01:56:40   have this wide range of prices available.

01:56:43   So the iPad Pros, yeah, start at a high price.

01:56:47   But there's the iPad Air,

01:56:49   which they brought the name back out,

01:56:51   and it's a much lower price.

01:56:53   And then they have the just plain iPad with no adjective,

01:56:55   which starts at a really low price.

01:56:58   - Yeah, like $329. - Yeah.

01:56:59   And they have keyboard cases available

01:57:03   that you can open up,

01:57:05   and they work with Bluetooth keyboards,

01:57:07   so there's third-party stuff that you can buy

01:57:09   if you wanna use it.

01:57:10   And they all get the trackpad support, right?

01:57:15   Which is really cool,

01:57:16   that this whole new trackpad support

01:57:18   that everybody's so excited about,

01:57:20   Everybody wants to see these 300 to $350 magic trackpads

01:57:25   that are coming out for the iPad Pros,

01:57:27   but there's a Logitech cover with a built-in trackpad

01:57:30   that Apple collaborated with Logitech on

01:57:33   that's a lower price

01:57:34   and will work with the lower price iPads.

01:57:36   But the MacBooks still start at 999,

01:57:41   and we can be happy that the MacBook Air

01:57:44   with the retina and the new keyboard,

01:57:47   and it's not like they're selling

01:57:48   a two-year-old MacBook Air for $999.

01:57:51   It's brand new and it's really good,

01:57:53   but $999 is actually a pretty high starting point

01:57:57   if the MacBook is the platform you wanna get in on.

01:58:00   And the iPhone has a lower starting point,

01:58:04   the iPad has several options at lower starting point,

01:58:08   and that to me, I don't know what Apple should do about it,

01:58:11   but I kind of feel like that's one way

01:58:14   where they're really steering people towards iPads,

01:58:17   where it's like, okay, if your budget

01:58:19   for a laptop-ish type thing is five or $600,

01:58:23   you can't even really consider a new MacBook.

01:58:26   You're either looking at a used MacBook or a new iPad.

01:58:29   - It feels like on the iPhone,

01:58:33   they're gonna have the greatest price scale.

01:58:37   If you think that iPhones, I mean,

01:58:41   what you have the Macs, that goes up to what?

01:58:44   I mean, $2,000.

01:58:45   - Yeah.

01:58:47   I'm enjoying your son's meltdown.

01:58:50   - Yeah, is that what's happening upstairs?

01:58:52   - I don't know.

01:58:53   (laughs)

01:58:54   - I think it might be singing.

01:58:55   - Yeah, I was gonna say, I can't really tell

01:58:57   if he's really happy or really upset.

01:59:00   - Oh no, he's screaming, he's upset.

01:59:03   - Oh, okay.

01:59:03   (laughs)

01:59:06   - I wish I knew what he's, I mean, it's just so funny

01:59:09   the things that he cries about these days too.

01:59:12   - Yeah, it's been, yeah.

01:59:14   - We gotta get your dog in here.

01:59:16   What's your dog's name, Pixel?

01:59:17   No.

01:59:18   - Browser. - Browser.

01:59:19   I knew it was something technical.

01:59:20   - Yeah, and he hasn't bothered me.

01:59:22   He hasn't wanted to come in here,

01:59:23   which means that my son's upstairs probably feeding him

01:59:26   whatever he's been eating for dinner or snacks,

01:59:28   so that's why he's not in my office.

01:59:30   - How is Browser doing with everybody staying?

01:59:32   Do you think Browser notices,

01:59:34   or is Browser just like, "Hey, this is cool.

01:59:35   "Everybody's here, all my people are here."

01:59:39   - Browser is, first of all, very dirty

01:59:42   because we can't get him groomed.

01:59:44   So he's very long and shaggy.

01:59:47   And I, you know, it's just not easy to groom a dog.

01:59:51   I've watched a lot of YouTube videos

01:59:53   and I'm just like, me and my wife are like,

01:59:56   we don't think we should do this.

01:59:57   This does not seem like a good idea.

01:59:58   Even though we've bought like a lot of the supplies,

02:00:00   where it's like, he either is just gonna end up like,

02:00:04   you know, just having like a lopsided haircut

02:00:06   or like we just worry that we could hurt him.

02:00:08   - Right, right.

02:00:09   - So we're just hoping that in a month

02:00:13   we can take him to a groomer.

02:00:15   If anyone on the show is like a secret underground groomer

02:00:19   in the New York, New Jersey area, please contact me.

02:00:22   But really.

02:00:25   But yeah, no, he's, I think he's annoyed.

02:00:31   He's truly annoyed, especially by my son

02:00:33   who thinks that he's like his brother

02:00:35   and like they just, he just pulls his tail

02:00:37   and tries to play games with him all day.

02:00:39   - And he's here all the time now.

02:00:42   - Yeah, he's here all the time.

02:00:43   He never goes outside.

02:00:45   I mean, we go outside, we go for walks and stuff, but yeah.

02:00:47   - Dogs are usually the opposite,

02:00:49   where dogs are like, "Oh my God, I'm so glad you're home.

02:00:50   I'm so glad you're home.

02:00:51   Where have you been? Where have you been?

02:00:52   I'm so glad you're home."

02:00:53   But I feel like at some level, dogs also,

02:00:55   they may not realize it,

02:00:56   but they kind of like their alone time too.

02:00:59   - He, I think he was that way the first couple of weeks,

02:01:02   like the first week and a half.

02:01:03   He's like, "Oh my God, you know,

02:01:05   you're in your office and my wife's upstairs.

02:01:07   I can go back and forth and you guys are right both here. This is amazing." And then I think

02:01:11   he realized, wait, they're like not leaving during the middle of the day. And also we canceled our

02:01:16   dog walker because we don't want anyone coming in the house. So in the middle of the day, both

02:01:19   of them were like, we're fighting over who has to walk the dog. And if he's lucky, he gets walked

02:01:25   for 10 minutes. You know, because we're like, we got to get back to work or something like that.

02:01:29   I mean, we've extended our walks in the morning and the evening, but yeah.

02:01:33   - Yeah. - You've got stuff to do.

02:01:34   - Tough times for dogs. - Yeah.

02:01:36   - Yeah, I mean, he has made a lot of appearances

02:01:38   in my videos, so that has made him happy, I think.

02:01:42   He does get very excited when he sees that

02:01:44   people like the videos.

02:01:45   - Well, that's the last thing, very last thing

02:01:47   I wanted to talk about is that you even mentioned it,

02:01:50   that you've taken on and expanded,

02:01:52   you've always had videos that accompany your columns,

02:01:54   but now you've taken on a role where you're in charge

02:01:57   of this whole video team for the,

02:01:59   at thejournal.com, they still can't--

02:02:03   I mean, I'm not anymore.

02:02:04   I did that for about a year, about two years,

02:02:08   or a year and a half ago.

02:02:09   - I didn't realize that.

02:02:12   So you're not leading the video team anymore?

02:02:15   - No, I'm not leading the video team anymore,

02:02:16   but I do produce some videos on the side

02:02:19   and work with some of the teams in our department

02:02:21   to work on some longer form pieces.

02:02:23   And I manage a small team of stuff that works on my stuff

02:02:27   and other things mostly related to technology.

02:02:32   I did a sort of executive produced a big piece last year on Amazon.

02:02:36   It was a three-part series.

02:02:38   We just finished working on a long piece that is,

02:02:42   I'll publish it at some point. I don't know when,

02:02:46   but it's a 30 minute documentary that I worked on on my own that,

02:02:50   well, it's a deep subject about death and technology.

02:02:55   I wanted to play around with something a little bit different than what I

02:02:58   typically do. So I worked on that for the last couple months.

02:03:01   and now I'm starting to again get back

02:03:03   into leading some other smaller projects

02:03:05   on the video team at the journal.

02:03:06   - So do you feel like as you're writing your columns now

02:03:11   during this as your home,

02:03:12   is it harder to do the videos or easier or just different

02:03:17   because obviously production quality

02:03:20   has to go down to some degree

02:03:22   because you can't go to a studio, you're at home.

02:03:25   - It is maddeningly hard.

02:03:29   It is maddening and it is very hard.

02:03:31   And I have a great producer, his name is Kenny,

02:03:34   Kenny Wasis, he's a fan of your show,

02:03:36   so you might actually be listening.

02:03:37   - Hello, Kenny.

02:03:38   - He is, so we can't shoot together.

02:03:42   And he's shot, he shoots and produces

02:03:45   and edits all my stuff.

02:03:47   And we've been working together for the last,

02:03:49   I don't know, maybe like six, eight months now.

02:03:52   And we've done some really ambitious things

02:03:53   over those times.

02:03:54   He did the bubble video, we did the Renaissance video

02:03:57   for the iPhone review.

02:04:01   I can't think of some other ones that we've done.

02:04:04   And so we've really upped production quality on those.

02:04:07   At this point though, I'm shooting with an iPhone.

02:04:09   I had to figure out, I mean, I've shot with iPhones before,

02:04:12   but I've had to upgrade all my stuff

02:04:14   to shoot with an iPhone, do audio here, do tracking.

02:04:17   I mean, I have a whole, have that all set up at the office.

02:04:21   And so I've just been spent,

02:04:23   I spent the first two weeks troubleshooting the setup.

02:04:26   And now I'm kind of set up, but it's still hard.

02:04:29   It's everything from shooting takes a number of hours,

02:04:32   even if they're short scripts, to media management

02:04:35   and then getting that all on my computer

02:04:36   and then uploading it to him to edit,

02:04:38   making sure audio is okay when there's a two and a half year

02:04:41   old in the house so I can only really shoot

02:04:43   and track my stuff in the evening.

02:04:47   That's why I also tried to push you off to doing the evening

02:04:49   'cause he usually naps from like two to four.

02:04:51   So yeah, it's all been a, you know, I don't wanna come,

02:04:55   I keep saying, I'm like, I'm not gonna complain.

02:04:59   I love my job, I have a job,

02:05:01   I feel still like I've got some creative spirit,

02:05:05   though I feel like it's kind of been dwindling

02:05:07   over the last couple of weeks,

02:05:09   and I just need a little bit of a break,

02:05:10   and I really do hope at some point soon

02:05:13   we can get back to some semblance of normal

02:05:15   for a lot of reasons, but yeah, I don't wanna complain,

02:05:17   but it's definitely not been easy.

02:05:19   - Yeah, I figured you would say that,

02:05:21   because it just is such an inherently collaborative medium,

02:05:24   And I know that there's some people

02:05:26   who do their YouTube channels all by themselves

02:05:28   and I don't know how they do it,

02:05:30   but I know that a lot of the,

02:05:31   especially the higher concept stuff that you've done,

02:05:33   I mean the Renaissance Fair one really comes to mind,

02:05:36   but it's such a high concept,

02:05:37   it's clearly just a large scale collaboration.

02:05:42   - Absolutely, absolutely.

02:05:43   And I mean that even just like connection with Kenny

02:05:46   or my producer or Kenny who is my producer,

02:05:48   other producers in the office.

02:05:50   I mean, I, and also we have this constraint right now

02:05:53   I actually have a couple of big ideas I want to pitch and get the budgets for.

02:05:58   A lot of the stuff that I've done, my independent stuff actually doesn't cost that much money

02:06:02   to do, even though I think a lot of people think that it does.

02:06:05   We are a very, very savvy team and we keep costs quite low, even on the things that you

02:06:09   think would be very expensive, we keep the costs very low.

02:06:13   But on some of the other stuff I've led, this three-part Amazon series that I led that was

02:06:17   a considerable budget, this documentary I'd been working on is a considerable budget,

02:06:21   You want to have people in the room to sort of talk through

02:06:23   how we're gonna invest, what are we gonna do,

02:06:25   what's the timeline gonna look like?

02:06:27   That, I just, I can't imagine leading from afar.

02:06:30   Especially on the shoot,

02:06:34   we are sending shooters out in some regards.

02:06:36   Some of our people have the right equipment

02:06:39   and they can go out into the world and go shoot.

02:06:41   But that's very limited right now.

02:06:43   Most media organizations are trying to limit that, right?

02:06:45   They're trying to keep most of their reporters

02:06:47   out of harm's way if they can.

02:06:50   And especially some of the topics that I'd wanna go after.

02:06:53   They intersect right now.

02:06:56   Like there are some certain coronavirus stories

02:06:58   that I'm very interested in,

02:06:59   the intersection with tech and coronaviruses,

02:07:01   obviously we've been talking about.

02:07:02   But yeah, I just think it's definitely hard.

02:07:07   It's been a very big adjustment.

02:07:08   - Yeah, I imagine so.

02:07:10   Well, it was delightful to talk to you.

02:07:13   - You too.

02:07:14   - I really did enjoy it.

02:07:14   - Are we gonna start recording the podcast now?

02:07:16   - Yeah, I'm ready.

02:07:17   You ready to hit start?

02:07:19   - I'm ready to go.

02:07:20   - Did we, yeah, no, I'm totally good for another two hours.

02:07:23   (laughing)

02:07:24   - Is your stomach though?

02:07:26   - No, my stomach isn't, but that means

02:07:28   I don't have to deal with my screaming toddler upstairs.

02:07:31   Yeah.

02:07:32   - All right, Joanna Stern.

02:07:33   - How's your son been doing through this, by the way?

02:07:34   - Oh, he's great.

02:07:35   He's 16, he's in 10th grade.

02:07:37   School is canceled in Pennsylvania through the end of the,

02:07:39   well, not canceled, he has online schooling.

02:07:42   - When did he get to be 16?

02:07:44   - I know, it's crazy.

02:07:45   He can self-direct, if anything.

02:07:49   It seems from the grades we get, he's actually doing better.

02:07:53   We were worried that he would blow it all off

02:07:57   and think, ah, roll his eyes.

02:07:58   He's doing his work.

02:08:01   I think we're on week four since he's been at home.

02:08:04   Part of that was the spring break,

02:08:06   so it wasn't nonstop school.

02:08:08   But socially, the thing that's interesting,

02:08:11   and I think that the girls, I'm sure,

02:08:14   are having a harder time than the boys,

02:08:16   but his friends, they socialize over the internet anyway.

02:08:21   They don't like to get together, really.

02:08:24   It just seems like that's a pain.

02:08:26   And if you go out and get together,

02:08:29   you've gotta come home and you have curfew,

02:08:31   and it's like, if you're just doing it all over Discord

02:08:35   and playing games, you're both A, playing your games

02:08:39   and talking to your pals, and it's a lot easier

02:08:43   to stay up really late doing it

02:08:45   because you haven't left the house.

02:08:47   And so socially, him and his friends,

02:08:52   I don't think they're doing anything differently

02:08:53   than they would do if there was no quarantine.

02:08:56   They prefer to spend their spring breaks

02:08:58   collaborating, palling around over their computers

02:09:02   and phones.

02:09:03   It's very, very different.

02:09:05   Nothing is more different about his life

02:09:08   than my life at the same age as a teenager.

02:09:11   I couldn't wait to get out of the house

02:09:13   every chance I could get when I was 16.

02:09:16   - Yeah, maybe you also don't know the full story.

02:09:19   You don't think he wants to go out and party

02:09:21   with his friends at least a little,

02:09:22   or go, you know, he's 10th grade?

02:09:24   - Ah, doesn't seem like it.

02:09:25   I mean, I think he misses it a little.

02:09:27   I think the fact that it's four weeks

02:09:29   and it hasn't seen anybody,

02:09:30   it's gotta be weighing on him a little,

02:09:32   but I don't think it's anywhere near as big a deal.

02:09:35   You know, just talking to the other parents that we know,

02:09:38   the girls in his class clearly get together physically.

02:09:43   in normal times, physically and go shopping together,

02:09:47   and they go out to eat and stuff.

02:09:48   - And sleepovers and stuff. - And sleepovers,

02:09:50   and it's just the difference between girls and boys

02:09:55   in some way, and I just don't think the girls

02:09:59   don't wanna spend 18 hours a day playing video games.

02:10:02   They have a wider range of interests.

02:10:06   - I just can't believe he's 16.

02:10:09   I feel like, I mean, I probably did meet him

02:10:11   when he was probably eight or 10 or something.

02:10:14   - Maybe, probably younger, yeah, it's crazy.

02:10:16   Yeah, it's crazy, but he's doing well.

02:10:18   And all three of us are homebodies to some degree,

02:10:23   so I think we're doing better than a lot of people.

02:10:27   My dad, I think, my dad's a real extrovert

02:10:30   and really, it's just everybody,

02:10:33   it's a town where he lives, everybody knows Bob Gruber.

02:10:36   I think it's kinda driving him nuts not seeing everybody

02:10:40   that he normally sees on his daily,

02:10:42   just walk around and go get coffee and go here.

02:10:46   He just has this whole routine in retired life

02:10:48   where he goes one place to get coffee

02:10:50   and then goes somewhere else

02:10:51   to buy a scratch-off lottery ticket.

02:10:54   Like, why don't you-- - And play bingo.

02:10:55   I mean, he has to play bingo.

02:10:56   - Right, but it's like, I say to him,

02:10:58   why don't you just buy lottery tickets at Jake's

02:11:00   where you buy the coffee?

02:11:01   And he's like, "Ah, well, I,"

02:11:02   and I realize, he doesn't wanna say it,

02:11:04   but he just wants somewhere else to go,

02:11:06   and now he doesn't go anywhere.

02:11:07   - I'm that way.

02:11:08   I'm definitely that way.

02:11:09   Yeah, I miss the, like I said,

02:11:10   I miss the office so much.

02:11:11   It's like, am I just a sad person

02:11:13   how much I love the office?

02:11:15   I just, I love my office.

02:11:17   And so I love the people I work with and yeah.

02:11:20   - Yeah. - Well.

02:11:22   - All right, Joanna, thanks.

02:11:23   - Great to talk to you.