The Talk Show

183: ‘A Very Masculine Bark’ With Serenity Caldwell


00:00:00   Did you watch the Oscars?

00:00:01   I watched the end of the Oscars, so I caught right at the end when everything went totally wrong.

00:00:06   So you were watching live when it happened?

00:00:09   Yeah.

00:00:09   We were not. I've kind of given up on award shows. I find that they're just too damn tedious.

00:00:14   But I got a news alert from the New York Times, and so we immediately switched over and quickly rewound and watched it.

00:00:22   But it's so totally different knowing.

00:00:23   You know, like the news alert was like, holy hell, they announced the wrong winner of the

00:00:28   best picture.

00:00:29   Go watch this fiasco live, you know.

00:00:31   Whereas if you're watching live, it's got to be more of a, what the hell is going on?

00:00:35   Yeah, it was very unscripted.

00:00:37   So the funny thing is, of course, I was driving home from Canada.

00:00:40   So when I say watching live, what I really mean was, I had my iPhone open, and I was

00:00:46   listening to it.

00:00:49   So I didn't see the facial expressions that everybody was talking about.

00:00:52   I just heard this long, really awkward pause, and I'm like, well that's like... and some

00:00:59   shuffling in the microphone, and I'm like, that doesn't, that's not usually how you build

00:01:03   suspense.

00:01:04   It's not like, you know, shuffle, shuffle, shuffle, everything's, you know, everything's

00:01:09   fine here, we're all fine, how are you?

00:01:12   Yeah, it was just, it was odd.

00:01:14   And then the resulting commotion, I almost, like, I didn't pull over the car, but I almost

00:01:22   wanted to pull over the car and be like, "I actually want to watch this because this seems

00:01:25   kind of ridiculous." So I didn't actually get to watch the video of it until I got home

00:01:32   in front of, you know, and probably I don't think until the next day, sitting down in

00:01:37   front of my computer being like, "Okay, what actually happened during this nonsense?" And

00:01:43   And then watching like Warren Beatty just look completely confounded and feel like,

00:01:51   "Uh, let's maybe not announce this."

00:01:56   And then I forget, who's his co-anchor?

00:01:58   Uh, Faye Dunaway.

00:01:59   His co-presenter.

00:02:00   Faye Dunaway, there we go.

00:02:02   For some reason, her name wasn't coming to me, but yeah, Faye Dunaway just being like,

00:02:06   "All right, it's Lalo Land!"

00:02:07   And everybody, you could just see like his face crystallizing.

00:02:11   Right.

00:02:12   "Oh my god, we've made a huge mistake!"

00:02:14   Right, I don't know that we should have done that, right?

00:02:16   Yeah, exactly. Even though it's live TV, but the show must go on, right?

00:02:20   It's funny too, because to my memory, and I guess I don't really watch award shows anymore,

00:02:26   but it seems to me that in my mind, the Oscars is the one that's only, that's most bragged over the years

00:02:32   about the fidelity of the vote counting process and the secrecy and, you know,

00:02:38   the very ostentatious mentions of their partnership with Price Waterhouse, or now it's Price Waterhouse

00:02:45   Coopers, you know, and giving them a special briefcase. Right, and that the two briefcase

00:02:51   carriers have become, became, even before, way before this, now they're much better known, but

00:02:56   they were part of the red carpet ceremony, you know, where they're dressed up and they're, they're,

00:03:02   they're ostentatiously bringing, you know, they're carrying these briefcases full of the

00:03:07   winning envelopes, that they're the show that, you know, like other awards shows, I don't remember

00:03:13   that, you know, any kind of exposure to the integrity of the process.

00:03:19   No, exactly. I mean, the Golden... it's also the history of the award show, right? Where you look

00:03:26   at the Golden Globes and you look at the Emmys, and to a much lesser extent, the Tonys. The Tonys

00:03:31   are more on the Oscar levels, but especially if you look at the Golden Globes and the Emmys,

00:03:36   They're very much more of a like, "Let's sit down and have a boozy lunch and acknowledge that these are probably, you know, probably win awards that are won by massive marketing campaigns, but also let's feel good about ourselves."

00:03:51   Whereas the Oscars, for as long as I've been alive and much more than that, was raised as the like, this is the pinnacle of, you know, achievement as an actor or an actress or a director.

00:04:03   and you know, once you're recognized at the Oscars, then you have become a legitimate star.

00:04:09   And that was the thing. It's like, if you want to become big, you have to get an Academy Award nomination.

00:04:15   Forget the Golden Globes or the Emmys or anything along those lines.

00:04:19   Those don't matter as much as the Oscars, because the Oscars are voted on by us.

00:04:24   And we, you know, we have this proud tradition.

00:04:27   And like you said, PricewaterhouseCoopers, I'm pretty sure that's the only accounting

00:04:32   firm I knew by name growing up.

00:04:37   When you ask little kids, like 7 year olds, "How many accounting firms can you name?"

00:04:42   And I'm pretty sure that, at least growing up in LA, the only thing people would have

00:04:47   been able to be like, "Oh yeah, PricewaterhouseCoopers, they do the Oscars!"

00:04:50   They're the people who look a little bit nerdy in really fancy suits and dresses, holding

00:04:56   giant briefcases that remind you of nuclear football.

00:05:00   They take care of us and they make sure that the integrity of the Oscar stays intact, dammit.

00:05:05   Nice to remember...

00:05:06   Let me take a moment here and do my own Warren Beatty.

00:05:09   Just let me double check that we're okay here.

00:05:11   Can you double check that you're using the right mic in Skype?

00:05:14   Yeah. I absolutely can.

00:05:17   Because you sound pretty good, but you sound ever so slightly tinny.

00:05:21   Is that good? Can you hear me tapping on that?

00:05:24   - Yeah, yes. - Yeah.

00:05:25   - All right, you're sorry.

00:05:26   - And I'm using the right microphone.

00:05:27   - All right, you're good.

00:05:28   All right, I just wanted to double check.

00:05:30   - But I figured out why, hold on.

00:05:32   I'm using the right microphone, but the wrong side of it.

00:05:35   - Oh, now you sound much better.

00:05:37   - Yeah, okay.

00:05:39   Well, now we've proven that podcasting on a afternoon.

00:05:44   Yeah, we're done.

00:05:47   Show's over, everybody.

00:05:49   - It's not La La Land.

00:05:51   You do sound better. - I'm just not.

00:05:52   That's good. I'm glad. I definitely don't want to sound

00:05:55   tinny on the talk show.

00:05:56   So funny. I'm so glad I said something now rather than two

00:06:02   hours from now. Me too.

00:06:04   So I found this so interesting because it really was the worst

00:06:09   possible it was the biggest award

00:06:10   was the end of the night and they couldn't cut to commercial

00:06:14   and it's like no offense, no offense at all to the nominees

00:06:18   for best sound editing, because it is it's the biggest award

00:06:21   they can win and I understand that these are professional, you know, like in a way that like

00:06:26   you and I work in a niche area of journalism, right? Like I understand what that's like and

00:06:33   that you're they're obsessed with sound that I'm not trying to diminish the embarrassment that it

00:06:38   would have caused if the same mistake had happened two hours earlier when the best sound editing

00:06:43   award was given out but it would have been so much less publicity the next day, right?

00:06:49   - Yeah, you wouldn't, and also honestly,

00:06:51   the winner of best sound editing,

00:06:53   chances are they would've gotten up

00:06:55   and then before reading their speech,

00:06:57   they probably would've looked down at the card

00:06:59   and been like, hmm, this has nothing to do

00:07:02   with sound editing.

00:07:04   Although maybe they wouldn't,

00:07:05   because as the article you were sharing with me earlier

00:07:09   about typography, once I got a chance to look at

00:07:12   the winner cards that they were distributing,

00:07:17   Who puts the name of the category in 10 point font

00:07:20   at the bottom of a card?

00:07:23   Like that--

00:07:24   Yeah, because that would have been the other thing.

00:07:25   If the same mistake had been made with an earlier award,

00:07:28   it's also possible that the person reading it

00:07:31   wouldn't have made the mistake of reading it.

00:07:33   Because part of what made the series of unfortunate events

00:07:37   that made this possible is that the name of the movie

00:07:43   of the previous winner-- what happened

00:07:46   is for anybody who isn't sure of the details of this,

00:07:48   the second to last award was given for best actress,

00:07:50   and it was Emma Stone in the movie "La La Land."

00:07:53   And they keep two copies of these cards

00:07:55   on both sides of the stage, and when they came out,

00:07:57   when he was supposed to give them the last card of the night

00:08:00   he gave Warren Beatty the second to last,

00:08:02   which was the one that was just announced.

00:08:04   So the second to last award was for Emma Stone "La La Land,"

00:08:07   and he gave Warren Beatty a card

00:08:08   that said the exact same thing.

00:08:10   But it just so happened that "La La Land"

00:08:11   was one of the nominees for best picture

00:08:13   and was highly favored to win it, so it was no surprise.

00:08:17   And so when Faye Dunaway looked at the card,

00:08:19   it said Emma Stone, La La Land,

00:08:20   and she just sort of like, well,

00:08:22   I don't know why they put Emma Stone there,

00:08:24   but I see La La Land, so I'll say La La Land,

00:08:26   which was in hindsight a mistake,

00:08:30   but it's kind of reasonable.

00:08:33   - Yeah, it's not like the card said, I don't know, Zootopia.

00:08:38   And you're like, yeah, that makes sense.

00:08:40   If the same I gave the guy, the guy got the wrong card

00:08:44   from the previous award, was halfway through the show,

00:08:47   there's a good chance that none of the movies

00:08:50   that are up for the current one

00:08:52   were in the one that was previously announced.

00:08:56   And then they'd be like, they'd have to say,

00:08:58   maybe that would dawn on them,

00:09:00   like holy heck, they gave me the wrong card.

00:09:03   - Yeah, yeah.

00:09:04   - So A, the whole procedure,

00:09:08   This whole procedure of having two sets of cards seems like a massive mistake to me.

00:09:13   Oh my gosh.

00:09:15   So the way I understand it, and I may be totally wrong and things have changed since then,

00:09:20   so if there's a listener out there who has inside info on the Academy Awards and wants

00:09:24   to correct me if I'm wrong, go for it, but the way I understand it is this is leftover

00:09:29   from an older tradition, pre, you know, I don't even know, maybe even pre-backstage

00:09:37   handlers with the idea being that in order to make the show run smoothly and

00:09:42   To make things interesting because it is after all a stage show and a show that is being produced for television

00:09:48   People are going to come in from opposite sides of the stage

00:09:52   But because there are you know as as time has gone on there are like big numbers and things have to change at the last minute

00:10:00   a presenter may have been originally scheduled to come on from stage left and then

00:10:05   abruptly needs to come on from stage right.

00:10:08   And rather than having to send a runner in black

00:10:13   like zipping around the back of the stage

00:10:15   and maybe running into the best actress nominee or something

00:10:18   and she's doing a costume change.

00:10:20   - And also that would violate the idea,

00:10:22   the rule that the only two people who have these envelopes

00:10:25   before they're announced are the two representatives

00:10:27   of Price Waterhouse.

00:10:29   - Exactly, and that also takes away the secrecy.

00:10:31   So the thought is, well, we'll just put

00:10:34   one briefcase carrier stage left

00:10:36   and one briefcase carrier stage right.

00:10:38   They each have a copy of all of the awards,

00:10:41   so no matter what happens, the presenter,

00:10:43   no matter where they end up having to enter from,

00:10:46   they will always be right next to the envelope necessary

00:10:50   for their entrance, which is a lovely idea in theory.

00:10:53   And you know, 80 some odd years until now worked okay.

00:10:59   - Yeah, and even if you wanna stick with it,

00:11:03   it's clear that the procedure should have been--

00:11:05   that it should have been with a very strict double checking.

00:11:11   If you're off stage on the other side,

00:11:14   and so in other words, your colleague-- like let's say you and I

00:11:16   are the two people giving out these awards.

00:11:18   If it's your turn to give out best actress in a leading role,

00:11:22   I'm going to have my copy of that exact envelope in my hand.

00:11:26   And then I'm going to watch the presenters go out on stage--

00:11:30   or I guess, who was it?

00:11:32   Leo DiCaprio comes out on stage, reads it,

00:11:35   and hands Emma Stone the Oscar,

00:11:38   and then at that point I'm gonna take my copy of that card

00:11:41   and put it in a different pocket, you know?

00:11:45   Right?

00:11:46   - Put it not in the hand that I'm about to give

00:11:49   to the next presenter.

00:11:51   - I'm going to systematically do that

00:11:54   for each of the awards to at least,

00:11:58   it doesn't quite make it impossible that I could do it,

00:12:00   because you'd have to destroy it or something.

00:12:04   And people want it for memorabilia and the like.

00:12:07   But still.

00:12:08   They had photos of the guy backstage, this poor fellow

00:12:12   who is responsible for this.

00:12:14   Taking a photo of Emma Stone moments before--

00:12:18   He's goofing around on Twitter with his iPhone,

00:12:21   taking pictures of Emma Stone.

00:12:23   And then there's photos of him holding two envelopes.

00:12:27   He's still got two envelopes in his hand.

00:12:29   the best actress one that he should have put into a different pile, and presumably the best picture

00:12:36   one that he needed to give to Warren Beatty in a minute, and he just gave him the wrong one,

00:12:40   which is insane. But when you look at the envelopes, Andy, it's funny because the tweet

00:12:45   that got sent around the world with the most popular tweet showing how hard the envelopes

00:12:52   are to read was a freeze frame from his TiVo that Andy Anatko, friend of the show Andy Anatko,

00:12:58   posted to Twitter and and yeah it's like a deep red envelope with very small

00:13:05   be on gold no gold on burgundy which I think is worse it's oh that's right

00:13:10   that's right yeah all right no it is much worse yeah let light text on dark

00:13:15   paper in general is a bad idea when you're trying to read especially in

00:13:19   bright lights on a stage and there's tons of people or backstage backstage

00:13:25   where it's dark and everybody involved is 50 or older.

00:13:30   And so I can vouch as a 40, almost 44 year old

00:13:36   that yeah, reading in the dark is a real problem

00:13:39   after the age of 40.

00:13:40   And like small type, it's just incomprehensible

00:13:45   that that would be the design,

00:13:48   especially given the system, you know,

00:13:51   that there are two sets.

00:13:53   you would just think that designing to make sure that we always give the right envelope

00:13:57   would be there.

00:13:58   [Laughter]

00:13:59   Maybe it's a little bit clearer on what this envelope is for. And again, I don't

00:14:03   understand the need to write it in such tiny text. I mean, if you look at Andy's photo,

00:14:10   it can't be bigger than 12 or 14 point font.

00:14:12   No.

00:14:13   And that and gold, like, and I understand the concept of, "Oh, well, we want to write

00:14:19   best actress in a leading role versus best actress in a supporting role. But can't you write

00:14:24   best actress or best picture in big honking like 36 point font? Maybe you know in in legible font?

00:14:35   That's crazy. You've got it. You've got it. I mean, there's just no excuse for not doing it in

00:14:40   dark textile, light background. I know. It's frustrating.

00:14:45   And it just-- it's just so funny.

00:14:48   Anyway, I had a couple of links this week

00:14:50   to the critique of the design.

00:14:52   And it's-- I think the other thing--

00:14:56   the other angle is the psychology of it,

00:14:58   which is that it totally makes sense to me

00:15:02   that it didn't even occur to Warren Beatty or Faye Dunaway

00:15:07   that we might be given the wrong envelope, right?

00:15:10   No, of course not.

00:15:11   The Oscars are always right.

00:15:13   Like I think that if you're the guy from Price Waterhouse, I would be thinking,

00:15:17   I really would, even if this was like my 20th year doing it and it feels familiar or whatever,

00:15:22   I'm still thinking, "Oh my God, I cannot screw this up on every single envelope."

00:15:26   This is the year. This is the year that terrible things will happen.

00:15:31   Somebody said that it is literally, it could not be, there's never been a better example

00:15:38   of that phrase, "You had one job." Right?

00:15:42   (laughter)

00:15:43   - Yup. Oh gosh. Yeah. I do feel kind of sorry for that poor guy.

00:15:50   Just, you know, just, I wouldn't want to be the person to be like,

00:15:55   "So, what did you do at your last job?" Well, I inadvertently screwed up the Oscars.

00:16:00   - Right. Best picture.

00:16:02   - Yeah. Oh boy.

00:16:07   - All right, let me take a break

00:16:08   before we get into the nerdy stuff.

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00:18:04   I thought we'd start, did you see this thing where the Apple shareholder meeting was earlier

00:18:08   this week?

00:18:09   Yes, good old Apple shareholder meeting.

00:18:13   We used to, when I worked at Macworld, we used to send somebody down there to just take

00:18:17   notes and it was usually very boring and there was always one person who's like, "Let's

00:18:23   divest all the company of all of X and Y."

00:18:27   But this year it was a little bit different.

00:18:29   This year's a little bit interesting.

00:18:30   It's like the bylaws of a public corporation are such that a crackpot with one share of

00:18:35   Apple stock can get the microphone if they so choose. I had no idea until this year.

00:18:42   I've never been to it. It's never been something that I've thought that saw the need to cover

00:18:48   firsthand. I had no idea that they held them at town hall. I thought it was some big thing where

00:18:59   a thousand, you know, Apple diehards love to go, you know, like they buy a share and hold onto it

00:19:06   forever just so that they can go, you know, like a Macworld keynote or something.

00:19:12   Yeah. Oh, we can go and see the, yeah, I just don't think that that many people

00:19:16   either realize what the annual shareholder meeting is, or they don't really think that,

00:19:24   "Oh yeah, this is my chance to be within 10 feet of Tim Cook! This is gonna be great!"

00:19:30   So it's really just like 100 people who show up.

00:19:31   Yeah.

00:19:33   It's because Town Hall is tiny.

00:19:34   Yeah, there's really not a lot of space. And I do think, I can't remember how it goes,

00:19:40   but I feel like there's some kind of priority system, but I may be wrong on that.

00:19:46   Where you have to RSVP or something like that, and so...

00:19:50   Yeah, yeah. So they actually have enough space.

00:19:54   So the news that came out of it was somebody asked a question.

00:19:56   This is from a report at 9to5Mac.

00:20:00   It's not on video or anything like that, so who knows what the greater context is.

00:20:03   But the news that came out was that Tim Cook said something

00:20:06   about the pro area again.

00:20:09   And I'll just read from 9to5Mac's story.

00:20:11   And I will put it in the show note, I promise.

00:20:13   Cook also hinted at Apple's product pipeline

00:20:15   by promising Apple will, quote, "do more in the pro area," end quote.

00:20:21   called out the creative field as especially important to Apple while pushing back against the notion that Apple is too consumer focused now.

00:20:27   "Don't think

00:20:30   that something we've done or something we're

00:20:33   doing that isn't visible yet is a signal that our priorities are elsewhere."

00:20:39   That's about as

00:20:43   little as you can actually say

00:20:46   Specifically like I don't expect him to reveal anything specific in a response to a shareholder

00:20:51   The question but he literally didn't even mention whether the at least in the quote, I don't know, you know again

00:20:59   It's the selective quotes from

00:21:01   See who wrote this at nine to five Mac Zach Hall at nine to five Mac

00:21:05   But at least from what he quoted it doesn't even mention whether has anything to do with the Mac or not

00:21:10   Like yeah, because they have the iPad Pro which is obvious, you know

00:21:14   I don't know if you could tell, but given the name,

00:21:16   they consider a device for pro.

00:21:18   For professionals, yeah.

00:21:22   Well, I do think, though, I do think

00:21:24   that in Apple marketing speak, pro doesn't necessarily

00:21:28   mean professional user.

00:21:30   It means something a little more nebulous.

00:21:33   It's sort of more like what in other contexts

00:21:38   would be like deluxe or premium,

00:21:42   just nicer and more expensive,

00:21:45   is sort of what they mean by pro.

00:21:47   And the iPad Pro in particular exemplifies that

00:21:53   in my opinion, because for example,

00:21:55   the MacBook Pros definitely look different

00:21:57   than the regular MacBooks.

00:21:58   They're thicker and heavier.

00:22:00   And in a way that's not as nice, right?

00:22:02   Like if you just, in terms of like which one's nicer

00:22:04   to carry around all day, a MacBook is better

00:22:06   MacBook Pro because it's thinner and lighter. It's that trade off of we'll make it thicker so we can

00:22:12   put, you know, more faster, faster, heavier components in there and a bigger battery and stuff

00:22:19   is in a lot of ways leads towards literally professional use cases, whereas the iPad Pro

00:22:26   versus the iPad Air, it's really just a nicer iPad. Yeah, well, but you could also argue the same

00:22:33   the same concept, right? Where you have the 12.9 and the 9.7-inch iPad Pro, they're the only iPads

00:22:39   that can use Apple Pencils, so that basically limits, like, creative professionals, if you

00:22:44   want to use an iPad as a proper sketching tool, you know, the only thing to get is an Apple Pencil

00:22:50   and an iPad Pro. Like, there's no, there's not even any point using a third-party stylus anymore,

00:22:55   because it's just so much of a better experience on that. And the, you could argue that, again,

00:23:00   the processing power on the 12.9 inch iPad Pro,

00:23:03   the True Tone screen on the 9.7,

00:23:05   like they are nicer features,

00:23:08   but specifically for people who spend a lot of time

00:23:11   staring at a tablet screen,

00:23:13   a True Tone screen is going to be nicer for them,

00:23:15   especially doing proofreading or typography correction

00:23:18   or any of the above.

00:23:20   It's gonna be a better workspace.

00:23:22   - Yeah, there's overlap.

00:23:23   There's clearly overlap between Apple's definition of Pro

00:23:26   and actual lowercase P professional use cases.

00:23:30   There's a lot of overlap in some cases, but it does it.

00:23:32   It's not like a one-to-one mapping.

00:23:34   - No, it's not the way that it used to be, right?

00:23:36   Where when Apple said, "This is our pro computer,"

00:23:39   what they really meant is,

00:23:40   this is the computer that the top 2% of the market

00:23:43   is going to buy for professional use cases.

00:23:47   - So who knows what he means?

00:23:48   We're gonna do more in a pro area.

00:23:50   I mean, I'm not saying it's bad.

00:23:53   I think it's better that he said something

00:23:55   than that he said nothing in terms of,

00:23:58   of, let's just say, the broader context of the concern

00:24:00   that Apple is losing interest in high performance computing

00:24:07   professional Mac uses.

00:24:10   Yeah.

00:24:11   Which is a--

00:24:11   It's funny.

00:24:12   --broad area.

00:24:13   But I'm talking-- the areas I'm thinking about-- developers

00:24:16   who have code that takes a long time to compile,

00:24:20   video editors, graphics--

00:24:23   people who do computer graphics and areas like that.

00:24:29   Like researchers, like people who do AI research

00:24:32   and have these huge data sets of--

00:24:36   obviously, artificial intelligence,

00:24:39   it's never not been an interest, but it's exploding

00:24:41   in practical uses where it's really starting

00:24:43   to become a consumer thing.

00:24:46   There's all sorts of super high performance computing

00:24:50   that people who are working on that need to do.

00:24:53   And, you know, there's this, you know,

00:24:57   the Mac Pro hasn't been updated in 1100 days, so.

00:25:00   - Oh, it's, yeah, it is overdue by just a few years,

00:25:07   just a, you know, just a while.

00:25:09   I don't know, it's funny to me having transcribed

00:25:13   many, many things that Tim Cook has said over the years,

00:25:17   usually at financial calls,

00:25:19   when he's, again, speaking off the cuff.

00:25:21   And the sentence phrasing, it may not be an exact transcription, but the "don't think

00:25:27   that something we've done or something that we're doing isn't visible yet is a signal

00:25:31   that our priorities are elsewhere," that is very classic Tim Cook being like, "What

00:25:36   do you mean we're not doing things for prose?"

00:25:41   It's him being, at least from, again, my reading, it's him being slightly defensive and slightly

00:25:45   confused as the, you know, why aren't you guys patient and just

00:25:50   trust that we know what we're doing? Which, you know, you can

00:25:54   be that way as the CEO of a major company. But like you say,

00:25:57   John, the Mac Pro hasn't been updated in 1100 days. Like,

00:26:01   there, it's not like people are throwing their hands up in the

00:26:04   air and saying, Oh, pro users, you know, you guys were just

00:26:08   catered to six months ago, you never, you know, don't worry

00:26:11   about it. Like, there are some valid concerns in this space.

00:26:14   It's sort of like the graph of how much anxiety it causes as the Mac Pro goes un-updated.

00:26:25   I'm not going to say it's logarithmic, but it increases over time.

00:26:30   It's not linear.

00:26:32   As time goes on, it gets scarier and scarier because it seems all the more preposterous.

00:26:37   So a couple of weeks ago, sometime somewhat recently, I linked to a story about a guy

00:26:48   who works from a guy who works in the professional video industry.

00:26:52   And it was just talking about how he expects he's going to have to switch from Mac Pros

00:26:56   to Windows machines soon because he's dependent on these cutting edge.

00:27:04   work he's doing needs GPUs and these NVIDIA boxes are coming out with all these

00:27:11   CUDA boxes, yep, parallel GPUs and it really is so much of where Moore's law still applies

00:27:20   is in the year-over-year improvements to GPUs and the parallelism and

00:27:25   and you know it's just where performance computing is going and you know how about

00:27:32   I don't know that anybody was really thinking that the Mac, even when the Mac Pro was brand

00:27:36   new 1100 days ago, it wasn't like the world's fastest GPU. And now it's unchanged over 1100 days.

00:27:44   So I got some pushback on that from people saying, "Hey, you just linked to this now." But that was

00:27:50   from May. That was like May 2016. It's old news. And I actually didn't notice that. It was like,

00:27:55   it's like one of the mistakes I make, I don't know, a couple of times a year during Fireball

00:28:00   I'll link to something thinking it's new and my comment makes it seem as though it's new and

00:28:05   It's not it's you know

00:28:08   I don't know however many months or even a year out of date and

00:28:11   It's just it's somehow I have a blind spot for double checking the date on a post because sometimes like what happens is I'll see somebody

00:28:17   Linked to it on Twitter or something and the link on Twitter is under the guys that it's new so I click on it

00:28:23   It's brand new yeah

00:28:24   And you know in some templates and on a blog or something like that the date might not be prominent

00:28:31   It might be at the bottom or something like that

00:28:33   And I don't I just hate when I make that mistake, but in this particular case. I actually feel like the mistake

00:28:39   I should you know it lends itself to your argument, right?

00:28:42   I updated the post then to say that he wrote it in May of 2016 so that everybody everybody who subsequently read it would know it

00:28:49   But the fact that the Mac hasn't been update Mac Pro hasn't been updated since then just makes his arguments all the more relevant

00:28:54   of it.

00:28:55   Absolutely.

00:28:56   And, you know, he's not shouting in a vacuum.

00:28:59   I have friends who work at visual design agencies, who actually a close friend of mine was really

00:29:06   sort of wrestling with herself whether or not to get one of the new MacBook Pros this

00:29:10   year to replace basically an aging 2009 era MacBook Pro, because she needs, you know,

00:29:19   she needs the power and she wants she wants an updated portable workspace.

00:29:23   But the MacBook Pro is essentially for her to buy it, she would be compromising on the

00:29:28   kind of things that she would need for running Cinema 4D and the like.

00:29:33   And it's really like, yes, video editors and graphics professionals are a niche audience,

00:29:39   and certainly more niche for Apple than they were a decade or even two decades ago.

00:29:44   But they're still, you know, that's still a segment that can move some product.

00:29:50   Video professionals don't usually, especially big production houses,

00:29:55   they're buying 20, 30, 40 computers for their workforce.

00:30:00   And if those computers are all tricked out Mac Pros so that they can process

00:30:05   footage, that's not a, yeah, it's a drop in the bucket compared to iPhone sales,

00:30:10   but it's still a pretty hefty chunk of Mac sales.

00:30:15   And for them to just be like, "Yeah, we're just gonna give up and hand this to Windows

00:30:19   because we don't care enough about that market anymore, or that market isn't interesting

00:30:23   enough to us anymore."

00:30:25   And part of me as a former film person, it really kind of is like a stab in the gut because

00:30:32   I don't, you know, like so many of my film friends and myself included, like, we don't

00:30:37   enjoy Premiere.

00:30:38   We don't enjoy, you know, working with Cinema 4D or Adobe's products.

00:30:43   Like the whole, one of the whole excitements about getting into this industry was working

00:30:47   with tools like Motion and Final Cut and Shake before it got discontinued.

00:30:53   And for Apple to basically be like, "Yeah, this is not an interest to us anymore."

00:30:57   Apple can do this, but they're essentially, you know, they're essentially telling people

00:31:02   who've based their entire livelihoods on working on a Mac and building up a software platform

00:31:08   on the Mac, "Eh, sorry, you're going to have to go learn another platform or go switch

00:31:13   to another operating system because your, you know, our bottom line, it does no longer

00:31:19   includes this segment of the population.

00:31:21   I it would occurred to me in the wake of the cooks, you know, more or less stay tuned. Again,

00:31:32   response to this question at the shareholders meeting is that Apple's culture of secrecy about

00:31:38   products works fine when the company is functional.

00:31:44   There are trade-offs.

00:31:46   People have-- this is one of those evergreen topics

00:31:48   about Apple is what if they were more open.

00:31:50   And in the ways that in the Tim Cook era,

00:31:54   they are a little bit more open in some areas.

00:31:57   There are trade-offs between secrecy and openness

00:32:00   in terms of maintaining a surprise,

00:32:02   in terms of not over-promising, being able to over-promise

00:32:07   and under-promise and over-deliver,

00:32:10   as opposed to the other way around.

00:32:11   For example, one of the things a lot of companies adhere to

00:32:15   is not talking about release dates of products,

00:32:18   because if you never talk about the release date of a product,

00:32:20   it won't be late.

00:32:22   Whereas if you do, and you're late, then you're late.

00:32:26   So the trade-off-- their culture of secrecy

00:32:29   has trade-offs when their product development

00:32:32   is functional.

00:32:32   And those trade-offs, I think Apple has long believed,

00:32:36   work in the company's favor. But when they're not functional, the culture of secrecy just

00:32:43   completely breaks down. I mean, and clearly the Mac Pro is a dysfunctional product at

00:32:48   this point because they haven't, you know, like if they had canceled it a year ago, if

00:32:52   they had just said at WWDC that, you know, you know, the time for these Mac Pro is done.

00:32:58   And you know, the iMac is our is our pro desktop. Obviously, it would not have gone over well

00:33:05   with a certain audience who wants higher, the highest performance they can get. But at least

00:33:11   you couldn't say that it's dysfunctional. I mean, that's a rational decision and then people can

00:33:16   plan accordingly. Well, and one year later we wouldn't be talking about it still. It just would

00:33:21   have happened. Right. I just feel for me, the last year, like from WWDC through today, is the period

00:33:32   were for me at least it's gone from the Mac Pro is overdue to the Mac Pro is ridiculous and the

00:33:39   fact that Apple isn't is still selling it isn't saying anything is it I don't know if the company

00:33:46   is in denial about it or if they're I don't know but it's a to me and again I don't I'm not saying

00:33:54   they need to because need is is the wrong word but I they ought to if it's true that they're

00:34:00   they're going to have some kind of event this month

00:34:03   to announce--

00:34:04   the rumors are rampant that they're

00:34:06   going to have new iPad Pros.

00:34:07   And we can talk about that in a moment.

00:34:09   But new iPads, maybe updated iPhone SE, maybe red iPhone 7s,

00:34:18   maybe even a new iMac, although there's not as much smoke

00:34:22   to that fire.

00:34:24   But on the other hand, IMAX often don't get the attention

00:34:29   in the supply chain, the Asian supply chain rumor chain

00:34:34   that iOS products do.

00:34:36   So maybe it's just that.

00:34:37   But I haven't heard anything about new Mac Pros.

00:34:40   - No, aside from people complaining that they're not here.

00:34:44   - Right, but I really think Apple ought to,

00:34:47   and it wouldn't be comfortable,

00:34:49   but I really think that Apple ought to somehow address

00:34:53   that elephant in the room at the event, even if they have nothing to say.

00:34:56   And, and I don't know exactly, because I don't know exactly what their plans are.

00:35:01   I don't know, you know, but they really ought to say something more than, you

00:35:06   know, they should let Mac Pro users know what, what, what the heck is going on.

00:35:11   And acknowledge the fact that this is ridiculous.

00:35:14   The thing that really frustrates me and I kind of forget about it until, uh, it

00:35:20   gets brought up again is the fact that they're still currently selling the very, very out

00:35:25   of date Mac Pro.

00:35:28   And not at a discount either.

00:35:29   It's just full price for a what, four and a half year old computer?

00:35:36   Right.

00:35:37   And that's another policy that has trade offs, but makes sense from Apple's perspective.

00:35:42   This policy of that they don't cut product prices as the life goes on.

00:35:48   So if they come out with a Mac book and it doesn't get updated for 15 months, in that

00:35:54   14th month, when the old Mac books have only one month but they haven't been replaced yet,

00:35:59   they still sell at the same price.

00:36:01   Whereas Dell, you go to Dell, the laptops, it's like buying commodities.

00:36:07   Every month they go up and down in price based on where the RAM market is and SSD components

00:36:13   dropping.

00:36:14   they come up with weird prices like you configure your Dell computer and it's $867 or something

00:36:19   like that instead of $899.

00:36:22   And weird sales too.

00:36:23   Right.

00:36:24   And Apple picks prices that are the price is part of the marketing where they have nice

00:36:28   even you know it's $2499 and it's going to stay $2499 and part of the reason they don't

00:36:33   drop it to $2299 14 months after it came out is so that when the next one comes out they

00:36:40   can use the same price point.

00:36:41   And so clearly that's what they're doing with the Mac Pro, is maintaining these price points

00:36:44   so that when the replacements come out, it doesn't look like the prices went up by $2,000.

00:36:48   Of course.

00:36:50   But it only works when the product development is functional, and it comes out on a regular

00:36:54   basis.

00:36:55   You can sell an 11-month-old computer at the same price, and you're only asking for a small

00:37:03   premium.

00:37:04   You can do it on a...

00:37:05   Let's say it's an 18-month development cycle.

00:37:07   can do it at the 17th month and expect that informed consumers know, "Oh, this is not

00:37:14   the time to buy a Mac Pro. It's 17 months old. There's probably a new one coming." But

00:37:18   to do it with a three-year-old computer is embarrassing.

00:37:24   It's insulting a little bit. And it's, like you said, because there's no new product and

00:37:31   they're just parading the fact, you know, "The latest and greatest software." I forget

00:37:35   a while back, someone posted to Twitter, you know,

00:37:38   the Mac Pro with the latest and greatest software,

00:37:40   including Aputure, something that's been sunset.

00:37:44   - Right.

00:37:45   Did they fix that?

00:37:46   Is that still on the website?

00:37:47   - I actually don't know.

00:37:49   I wouldn't be surprised if it still was,

00:37:52   because that's the problem, is that it just doesn't feel

00:37:54   like the Mac Pro is a priority.

00:37:56   And honestly, even if it was just, I don't know,

00:38:00   I would much rather they pull the product off the market

00:38:04   and say, "coming soon."

00:38:06   And just, you know, you wanna make it nebulous,

00:38:09   just say, we have, you know,

00:38:10   do the nebulous Apple Store thing.

00:38:13   We have something great in store for you.

00:38:15   And then just leave it like that.

00:38:16   And I'd rather be speculating about,

00:38:19   oh, well they have something in the pipeline,

00:38:21   and who knows if it'll come out in 2017 or 2019,

00:38:25   but they still have something in the pipeline.

00:38:27   Whereas right now, they're basically saying that

00:38:30   by not discontinuing the Mac Pro,

00:38:33   But every year that the old Mac Pro stays on sale,

00:38:38   it's just, it's frustrating.

00:38:40   And it's also, it's one of those things where,

00:38:43   yeah, you can sell an 11-month-old computer,

00:38:45   you can even sell an 18-month-old computer,

00:38:47   but once you start selling a computer

00:38:50   that's been on the market longer

00:38:51   than it's covered by AppleCare,

00:38:54   or that people would actively use it,

00:38:56   that's when I start getting a little bit uncomfortable.

00:39:00   - Yeah, and one of the weird things,

00:39:01   When I published that piece, the recent piece about the video

00:39:04   guy who's getting out of it, I got some amazing emails

00:39:07   from some daring firewall readers, most of them

00:39:11   in the video industry specifically,

00:39:13   although one guy was like an AI researcher, which

00:39:15   is where I got that idea earlier before,

00:39:16   where his team was going to--

00:39:21   I forget what exactly area they're working.

00:39:23   But more or less, they just wanted

00:39:24   to have massive amounts of computing to throw this at.

00:39:27   And in years past, because they work on Mac OS X

00:39:31   and prefer the Mac as a development environment,

00:39:34   just would have gone to Apple and just bought

00:39:36   gobs of Mac Pros and hooked them together

00:39:39   for parallel processing, but instead built

00:39:41   their own little network out of Linux boxes, which none of them

00:39:44   had previous--

00:39:45   the reason they would have rather gone with the Mac Pro

00:39:48   is they know the Mac Pro.

00:39:49   And they wouldn't have had to do a bunch of learning about Linux

00:39:54   before they got to the AI work that they really wanted to do.

00:39:57   They would have had to do more work upfront

00:40:00   to learn how to even set it up.

00:40:01   But then they said it was worth it

00:40:02   because it was so much faster.

00:40:04   And now we can just buy these boxes

00:40:05   and just throw them at the thing.

00:40:07   But I heard from a bunch of video pros

00:40:10   in the movie industry, including somebody

00:40:12   who was working on a super, I'm not gonna say the name

00:40:15   'cause I just treat emails confidentially,

00:40:17   but let's just say a movie with $150 million budget.

00:40:22   That's an upcoming summer blockbuster.

00:40:26   And that they're still doing editing for dailies on the 2012 Mac Pro.

00:40:34   I think it's like the version number is like 5 comma 1.

00:40:37   But the last cheese grater Mac Pros, they had like seven of them

00:40:44   on location for editing dailies and stuff, which is ridiculous.

00:40:49   That's unbelievable that not only is the Mac Pro as they're selling it,

00:40:55   three years old, but that there are industry professionals

00:40:57   where money is clearly not the problem,

00:41:00   who just prefer to work on a five-year-old computer.

00:41:05   And they said, and part of it with this movie is,

00:41:09   we want to use what we're familiar with,

00:41:12   but that the writing's on the wall

00:41:14   and that the next big thing might be on Windows.

00:41:19   - Yeah. - Which is heartbreaking.

00:41:21   - It is, it's very frustrating.

00:41:24   As I said, if you've spent 12 years learning your craft,

00:41:28   and yes, if you're in the digital video industry,

00:41:31   your craft is constantly changing

00:41:33   and it's your job to keep abreast of all of those changes.

00:41:36   But at the same time,

00:41:38   if you put 12 years of work into mastering Final Cut Pro

00:41:42   and you're an expert at Final Cut

00:41:43   and you're an expert at the compressor

00:41:45   and the various workflows,

00:41:47   and then they're essentially like,

00:41:48   "Yeah, well, but Apple's just given up on it,

00:41:51   "so now we have to move away."

00:41:54   I don't know if you ever did any graphics

00:41:57   illustration, but I remember, you know, back

00:42:00   when free, when Macromedia Freehand was a thing.

00:42:02   Yeah.

00:42:02   Um, back in the nineties, people, uh, like

00:42:06   professionals and students clung to Freehand for

00:42:10   God knows, like 10 years after it was discontinued.

00:42:14   Yeah.

00:42:14   Because they had their workflows and they had

00:42:17   like the ability to work through it, like work

00:42:19   in it, but, but unfortunately illustration,

00:42:21   you know, 2d illustration is vastly different

00:42:24   than 3D modeling.

00:42:25   You have to be using latest and greatest software

00:42:28   and hardware in order to be doing that

00:42:30   and to have your stuff look like it belongs

00:42:33   in a modern film.

00:42:34   You can't get away with using, you know,

00:42:36   or you can really only get away with using older equipment

00:42:39   for so long before it just, it explodes in your face.

00:42:42   - No, I remember those days.

00:42:43   Well, I never did much illustration,

00:42:45   but I, you know, I was more of a layout person.

00:42:47   So I was, QuarkXPress was my jam, as they say.

00:42:51   - Aw, page maker.

00:42:53   But there was the--

00:42:54   yeah, if you worked in graphic design and print,

00:42:57   you needed a layout program, which is probably either Quark

00:43:01   or PageMaker.

00:43:02   I was on the Quark side.

00:43:03   You needed an image editor, which is probably Photoshop.

00:43:07   And you needed a vector illustration app.

00:43:10   And that's the one where it was the hardest fought,

00:43:13   where there was Freehand and Illustrator.

00:43:15   And I always found--

00:43:16   I didn't really do much illustration.

00:43:17   Usually for me, it would be like editing something,

00:43:21   or something as basic as like,

00:43:24   let's make, we can't ship this font for some reason,

00:43:28   so let's make a little graphic and convert to outlines

00:43:31   so we don't have to ship the font.

00:43:33   For some context where you couldn't send somebody,

00:43:35   you really wanted to-- - The font.

00:43:37   - Yeah, you really wanted to just send them just an EPS.

00:43:41   I was always, freehand made sense to me,

00:43:45   and I think people who like,

00:43:47   even though they weren't from the same company,

00:43:49   there's a, in my experience, a huge correlation

00:43:52   between people who liked Quark Express

00:43:53   and people who liked Freehand.

00:43:55   That Quark and Freehand,

00:43:56   even though they're from different companies,

00:43:58   worked in people's brains the same way.

00:44:01   And I know people who hung on to Freehand for,

00:44:03   oh, you said, like so many years after the war was over.

00:44:07   - Mm-hmm.

00:44:08   Running it in Rosetta, way past the, yeah.

00:44:12   God.

00:44:14   Yeah, I think it was, what,

00:44:16   did Mountain Lion get rid of Rosetta?

00:44:17   - Yeah, I think so. - Or Lion?

00:44:19   It was something along those lines where I had a colleague who literally used freehand

00:44:24   up until the point that it could no longer be supported on their Mac, at which point

00:44:28   they finally grudgingly switched Illustrator.

00:44:33   So anyway, I don't know. I feel like this pro question is not going to go away, and

00:44:38   at this point I feel like Tim Cook's say nothing answer is no longer... again, I'm not going

00:44:43   to say it's not acceptable. It's not like anything bad is going to come of Apple if

00:44:46   they keep pretending like this is normal. But I think it makes

00:44:50   them look bad. And I just and I think that they I just based on

00:44:54   my email anecdotally, they're they've passed the point where

00:44:57   they're starting to lose customers.

00:44:59   Yeah, I would agree with that. Well, it's, it's hit that point

00:45:04   where their customers have to switch. They basically, you

00:45:08   know, they have to fish or cut bait at this point. They can't

00:45:11   just be waiting around in the water hoping that you know,

00:45:14   Apple will deliver them a giant fish on a plate ready to run a

00:45:19   CUDA system for their graphics needs and you know, a beautiful

00:45:24   you know, the sad thing, the really sad thing is Final Cut

00:45:28   Pro 10. A lot of people made a lot of fuss about it when it

00:45:31   first switched over. And for good reason, you know, it was a

00:45:35   fairly limited program. But the people on the software side for

00:45:39   Final Cut have actually been doing some really fantastic and

00:45:42   smart work and like the newest version of Final Cut, their latest update, which was

00:45:46   released I think a couple months ago, is really like it's a dramatic, a dramatic improvement

00:45:52   on on on that workflow. And so it hurts, it hurts my film editor soul a little bit, that

00:46:01   Apple wouldn't give its users the technology to really take advantage of this software

00:46:08   that they're developed, they're also developing in house. Like you're you're letting down

00:46:12   your Final Cut Pro team by not giving people the kind of hardware they need to run it?

00:46:17   I guess there's some small chance that in this supposed upcoming event in March that

00:46:24   they might answer this. I don't think there's any chance that they're going to answer it

00:46:29   by announcing a new Mac Pro, but maybe they'll have a new iMac that they'll say is, whether

00:46:36   they call it the iMac Pro or just say that this is a professionally spec'd machine and

00:46:40   give strong enough hints that yes, this is our answer.

00:46:43   And maybe then take the Mac Pros off the market

00:46:46   or lower them in price or hide them on apple.com.

00:46:50   (Kelsey laughs)

00:46:51   - Take away the aperture mention.

00:46:53   - Right.

00:46:54   - Yeah.

00:46:55   - There's a chance.

00:46:56   - Yeah, I mean, honestly, I could see that happening

00:46:59   if Apple essentially just said,

00:47:01   "Hey, we made a way for you to have

00:47:04   "an external graphics card

00:47:06   "and have it work properly on the Mac."

00:47:08   I think that would actually, that would solve a lot of graphics professionals' problems.

00:47:14   Because the main issue right now, and there are a couple of third-party boxes that'll do this,

00:47:20   where you can plug an NVIDIA CUDA card and then try and run it off. But there's always going to

00:47:26   be latency, right? Because it's not built to the same specs, and it's not built internally to Apple.

00:47:31   But the question is really, does Apple care about that? Does Apple care about the small niche of

00:47:38   users who are going to want a CUDA card when editing graphics.

00:47:43   Yeah, I don't know what to say. We could talk about the other rumors

00:47:47   about the upcoming event in a moment. The less depressing

00:47:51   rumors. Yeah, it's the ones that'll make us happy. But in the meantime, I'm going

00:47:54   to take a break here and thank our next sponsor. It's our good friends at

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00:50:11   Harrys, H-A-R-R-Y-S, dot com slash talk show. All right, does this, this rampant

00:50:22   rumor that there's going to be three new iPad Pros, 9.7 that I guess is just a

00:50:27   faster version of the 9.7 we have now 12.9 it's like a faster better version of the one we have

00:50:33   right now and a 10.5 inch diagonal screen that goes edge to edge does this make any sense to you

00:50:40   uh i want it to um i don't know i i can see how they've been staggering ipad updates over the last

00:50:52   18 months where, you know, they started with the 12.9 and the Pro and put all of their latest and greatest new features into that.

00:51:00   And then the next spring they had the 9.7 inch iPad Pro and they had almost all of the features from the 12.9 and some new stuff like True Tone and threw it into that.

00:51:11   And I guess I could see them throwing a third option into the mix and saying, "Let's see if this sticks, let's see if this is better."

00:51:20   But I just don't understand why they wouldn't update the line at once.

00:51:27   Right, like if they're gonna ship a new edge-to-edge design that takes out the chin and forehead or greatly reduces them, why wouldn't you do it in two sizes?

00:51:37   Mm-hmm. Exactly. Like, I understand why they launched the 12.9 and then launched the 9.7, because they were still working on trying to put the technology of the 12.9 and the screen into the 9.7.

00:51:48   the 9.7. I get that part. But if you're going to launch a 10.5, like the smaller one is

00:51:55   the harder one. So presumably, why wouldn't you launch the 10.5 and then also launch that

00:52:01   version in the 12.9 and then keep the 9.7 as that's your new iPad Air version, basically.

00:52:10   That's the old iPad Pro 9.7 is now just a regular old iPad Air. And these two, the 10.5

00:52:16   whatever the 12.9 becomes, these are your, you know, really awesome iPads.

00:52:22   Right.

00:52:22   To just throw in like one in the middle, it's just, it feels kind of like taking a dartboard out and like being like, maybe they'll like this.

00:52:32   The only way it makes any sense to me is if this, the new one with the edge to edge design is also a lot more expensive.

00:52:39   Like, it's, I don't know, $1500 or something.

00:52:43   You know so that you say oh I get it if I just want to pay what I'm used to paying for an iPad Pro

00:52:48   I'll get the new 9.7

00:52:50   Which would be you know, like a year better specs, but at the same prices as last year

00:52:55   Maybe with more storage or something, you know, but it's typical year over year Apple upgrade of a product

00:53:01   but if I'm

00:53:03   If I want to spend a lot more money, I can get this one

00:53:08   That's amazing because then it's an easy decision

00:53:10   But if the price range if the prices are like comparable

00:53:14   It doesn't make any sense to me that those products would exist alongside each other

00:53:17   I can see switching to a new design

00:53:19   But then they would take the old design and keep it unchanged and just lower the price. That's what Apple does

00:53:25   Yep, it would be last year's model the I mean I could see them getting rid of the 12 9 2 and just being like

00:53:33   Here's our you know

00:53:34   Like what they did with the 17 inch MacBook Pro when they switch to the new design of MacBook Pro

00:53:39   Where they're like, "Okay, this was a good thing,

00:53:42   "like this was a nice idea,

00:53:44   "but we wanna go with this design."

00:53:48   But that doesn't seem to be happening,

00:53:50   according to the rumors.

00:53:51   The only other thing that I can think of is,

00:53:55   yes, their goal is to eventually position the 9.7

00:53:59   as the entry level, and then the 10.5

00:54:02   is the first pro machine,

00:54:03   and eventually they're going to make a version of the 12.9

00:54:07   looks like the 10.5. Pause for dog barking.

00:54:10   Sorry, one second.

00:54:15   All in!

00:54:15   That's all right. I just don't think he likes

00:54:17   this iPad rumor.

00:54:17   Enough! No. She's like iPads.

00:54:22   She, she.

00:54:23   Yeah.

00:54:23   Sorry.

00:54:24   That's okay. She has a, she has a very

00:54:26   masculine bark, so I understand the confusion.

00:54:28   Yeah, but my thought is, all right, so the only

00:54:35   way I can see this making sense is if they've tried to make the 12 9 in this new configuration

00:54:42   and either the battery life is not what they want or the heaviness is not what they want.

00:54:47   Because if you look at the 12 9 right now, the 12 9 is still a pretty big compromise.

00:54:53   Like I switched to the 9 7 almost instantly after it became available and I thought I would hate it

00:54:58   because I'd gotten so used to the wide screen of the 12 9, but it was just so much lighter and

00:55:04   and more portable even with an art,

00:55:06   like with the Logitech Create case,

00:55:09   that it just felt like the no brainer option,

00:55:12   especially if I still wanted a Mac laptop around,

00:55:14   which I need for some tasks.

00:55:18   Whereas the 12 nine, you know,

00:55:20   it's on the edge of three pounds.

00:55:22   Yeah, I know all of it, it's pretty terrible.

00:55:25   (laughs)

00:55:26   It's not the best portable machine for people.

00:55:31   So I could see Apple being like,

00:55:33   Well, we don't want to sell it unless it's good,

00:55:37   especially with Apple sales lagging.

00:55:39   I don't know.

00:55:40   There's something about this three iPad product thing

00:55:44   that just doesn't make any sense to me.

00:55:46   And I can't help but feel that there's a large chunk of it

00:55:51   to come that will-- and then we'll say, oh, OK, now I see.

00:55:56   It makes sense.

00:55:57   Yeah.

00:55:58   I'm trying to connect the dots here because I'm sure it exists.

00:56:01   I'm sure, as you said, that if this is a real rumor,

00:56:05   I'm sure that there's a way to connect it all.

00:56:10   Olive is disagreeing with me.

00:56:11   - Did you see, in terms of the way that people

00:56:19   are doing work on iPads,

00:56:22   there was a great thread on Twitter this week

00:56:24   where a friend of the show,

00:56:27   and I'm known to me more as like an illustrator, Louis Mantea,

00:56:32   is working on a typeface design.

00:56:34   Yes.

00:56:35   And sent it to Jonathan Heffler of Heffler & Company fame on Twitter,

00:56:44   and just said, hey, do you have any thoughts?

00:56:45   And Jonathan Heffler took it and mocked up--

00:56:50   it was a PDF of the whole alphabet that he had drawn--

00:56:53   and mark this up with all of these little notes

00:56:57   about places where maybe the curves could be different

00:57:00   and the radii could be different and letters,

00:57:03   like here, take this, you did a great thing here

00:57:05   with the lowercase d, but you should do the same thing

00:57:08   with the lowercase b, and I'll put links in the show notes.

00:57:12   I've got 'em here in the notes already.

00:57:14   But I looked at, and as a type nerd,

00:57:17   it was super fascinating to see this feedback.

00:57:20   And it all made sense to me, and I was like,

00:57:21   wow, I can see how that would be better.

00:57:24   But then I instantly thought,

00:57:26   I wanna know how he did this marking up.

00:57:30   And so I asked and it was,

00:57:32   it was with an Apple Pencil.

00:57:37   In an app called Notability,

00:57:41   which I have heard of for the iPad,

00:57:43   but it's a PDF, you can import PDFs

00:57:47   and then you can draw right on top of them.

00:57:49   And it seems like it's really,

00:57:50   it's been around for a while,

00:57:50   It seems like it's really embraced the pencil.

00:57:52   And Heffler said to me that with the 12--

00:57:58   here's what his tweet-- with the 12.9 inch iPad and the Apple

00:58:02   Pencil and Notability, they moved all of their proofing

00:58:06   workflow from paper to screens in the last year.

00:58:10   And they're saving 36,000 pages of printed paper a year.

00:58:16   And I found that fascinating.

00:58:18   And I can totally see.

00:58:19   And to me, it's just been an idea.

00:58:22   I mean, everybody talks about it, but this whole idea of iPads for work

00:58:26   and what's the future of work computing.

00:58:29   And that to me, it largely comes down to form factors.

00:58:34   And that iPads and iOS have--

00:58:37   it's not so much that they're replacing traditional notebooks and Macs,

00:58:42   but that they're good for work in areas that Macs never were.

00:58:48   I don't think it ever even occurred to Jonathan Heffler to do to to do their their proofing

00:58:55   on a Mac before Apple pencil.

00:59:00   You could you could take if you had a Cintiq tablet or even on an Intuos from Wacom, you

00:59:06   could absolutely hook it up to your Mac and write on the typeface or write on the PDF.

00:59:12   But it it's just such a it was a clunkier experience.

00:59:14   Cintiq was definitely not a, you know, it's not a portable machine, you're still kind of stuck at

00:59:19   your desktop. And I think he would have found it he would have found it unpleasant compared to his

00:59:22   existing workflow of just printing 36,000 sheets of paper a year, marking them up with an actual,

00:59:27   you know, red pen. Well, the fun thing about critique, right, is that you actually get a

00:59:33   chance to step away from your desk. It's I remember back when we were putting together ebooks for Mac

00:59:38   World, one of my favorite things was to get our proof, and then to make the final edits to go like

00:59:44   sit up on our on the terrace at our at our old space and just,

00:59:47   you know, grab a can of coke and my proofs and go through them

00:59:51   with an old school red pen. And yeah, I could have like I could

00:59:54   have done those on an iPad, probably an iPad Air originally

00:59:58   but at the time when we were when we were doing that, but it

01:00:02   just wasn't as tactilely sense like satisfying, you couldn't

01:00:06   really write with the styluses that were available at that

01:00:09   point. And the iPad Air screen just wasn't good enough. Whereas

01:00:14   you take the iPad Pro, you take the Retina display

01:00:18   combined with the True Tone display,

01:00:19   so it's actually easier to work in all spaces.

01:00:23   And then the Pencil, which in the right app,

01:00:26   feels like writing with pen.

01:00:28   It may not have the tactile sensation on the glass,

01:00:31   but you're still getting the right approximation

01:00:34   of what you wanna draw and how you wanna draw it,

01:00:37   and that's really, really important

01:00:39   for doing things like that.

01:00:40   But it is fascinating to me.

01:00:43   I don't know if you saw it, I was doing this iPad Pros experiment where I essentially put

01:00:49   a call out on Twitter and via iMore just being like, "Hey, I really want to know what everybody's

01:00:57   using their iPad Pro for when it comes to work.

01:01:00   Just send me an email, give me the gist of what you're doing, and if it's cool, I'll

01:01:06   shoot you an email and we'll do some interviews."

01:01:09   And the amount of responses that I got in 24 hours really kind of blew me away.

01:01:16   And it wasn't just like, here are the three industries where the iPad Pro is being used.

01:01:21   It was across the board, like all kinds of crazy things.

01:01:24   Like we, I had a, there's a large number of people in IT who use the iPad for, you know,

01:01:31   running around on the go because it's easier to carry with them than like a little Chromebook.

01:01:37   The one of the cooler ones that I found out about is there's someone who's getting their

01:01:41   PhD at Harvard in ancient writing who uses the iPad to help recreate and scan and analyze

01:01:50   this ancient pre-Roman handwriting.

01:01:57   There's Kyle Lambert, of course, who drew the poster for Stranger Things almost entirely

01:02:01   on his iPad, the one that Netflix used.

01:02:06   And that's like that's the traditional thing you think of is like Hoeffler, you know, doing

01:02:11   annotation with the pencil or drawing with the pencil.

01:02:15   But there are so many other industries and weird use cases that I just don't think people

01:02:21   really realize are being filled by the iPad in, like you said, in environments where it

01:02:28   just either didn't make sense to have a Mac or a computer or something where maybe a Mac

01:02:33   or a computer was filling this gap, but not as well as it could have been.

01:02:37   Right. I also think, and there's obviously some legacy aspects to PDFs, and 8.5 by 11 paper,

01:02:44   or for our friends on the other side of the pond, A4 dimension paper. And so there's some legacy

01:02:51   aspects to that, where if you're in an industry like the law or something like that, where things

01:02:56   get published and there are—if you don't deal with it on paper, you are dealing it with a PDF

01:03:02   that assumes that it's printed on 8.5 by 11 paper,

01:03:06   where the 9.7 inch iPad screen is a little too small.

01:03:09   It's readable, but it's just shrunk down enough that it's--

01:03:16   there's a reason why that's not the size of the paper we use.

01:03:20   For sure.

01:03:20   Whereas on the 12.9 it is.

01:03:22   But then there's other areas.

01:03:26   It's just nicer artistically to have a bigger canvas.

01:03:31   And like I think with Heffler, you know, like I don't think there was any reason that they had to stick

01:03:35   You know

01:03:35   I think he went with the 12.9 not because it was a legacy process if they moved

01:03:39   Their whole workflow from from paper to screens they could abandon

01:03:43   The size I just think that

01:03:46   It's just better to look at him bigger and to be able to zoom up and to have a bigger canvas. Oh

01:03:50   Yeah, yeah. No, it's it's one of those things where if I was doing illustration on a regular basis

01:03:59   I think the 12.9 would be my daily carry without question because it really is there's something

01:04:06   Really wonderful being able to work at that larger screen size, especially when you're sketching

01:04:11   I don't know if you've ever taken like a life drawing class or anything where

01:04:15   You're being asked to make like big giant strokes with your pencil and taking your entire arm into the process

01:04:23   Not just like sketching with your wrist

01:04:25   That kind of those kind of big movements

01:04:28   traditionally in an illustration class,

01:04:31   you really can only get by working on big canvas paper.

01:04:35   'Cause if you work on an eight and a half by 11,

01:04:36   you're just gonna strike the thing off of the screen.

01:04:40   But the 12.9 inch iPad is one of the first

01:04:42   where I actually felt like you could do

01:04:45   life drawing sketches on it and not feel like

01:04:48   you were drawing essentially on a Post-it note.

01:04:51   - I feel like we as, there's a part of us, anybody,

01:04:57   whether you like Apple stuff or you don't.

01:05:00   But where you feel like it's,

01:05:03   there seems like there's a rational part of your brain

01:05:07   that sees owning an iPad and a MacBook

01:05:10   or just a tablet and a notebook,

01:05:14   if you have other operating systems, as wasteful,

01:05:17   that you've got two things that are basically the same size,

01:05:22   10 to 15 inches, and the same thing,

01:05:25   computer with an LCD screen in some way to set up a keyboard and maybe touch etc.

01:05:32   You just feel like well there should only be one and so that there's a

01:05:35   logical argument to the surface book movement right but I can't I've been

01:05:42   thinking about this a lot lady I just you know I think it really just depends

01:05:48   on the type of work that you do and oh yeah that there are certain tasks and

01:05:54   and it's certainly the ones that computers got good, personal computers got good at first in the last few decades,

01:06:00   that basically involve you sitting down at a table or a desk with your palms flat on a keyboard that's flat

01:06:10   with some sort of pointing device, a mouse or a trackpad right next to it

01:06:16   that you use to deal with the screen that is more or less horizontal in front of you.

01:06:22   There's a whole bunch of tasks where that form factor is terrific.

01:06:26   And if that's the type of work you do, like let's just say you get you have a job where you have

01:06:32   just lots of emails that you have to answer every day, so you're typing a lot, not just reading.

01:06:37   It's a terrific form factor. And you can see why,

01:06:40   like with the new MacBooks and MacBook Pros, where the displays have gotten

01:06:48   ever thinner than before, so thin that they can't even light up the Apple anymore.

01:06:52   The hinge is so great. It is so much easier to set up a MacBook at a desk in front of you, like in a coffee shop, than to set up an iPad with a keyboard.

01:07:06   For sure.

01:07:07   And again, what are we talking about? Ten seconds? Is it five, ten seconds to just do the little foldy thing with your keyboard and get it in?

01:07:15   It's not long, but it adds up, right?

01:07:17   It does.

01:07:18   The little things it's just not optimized for it if that's your main point of work and then when you close it

01:07:23   It's even more work, right? And

01:07:25   Because you have to unfold all of that, right?

01:07:28   And I'm not denying that for some people that that there's tons of people who just love writing on their iPads and that's a trade-off

01:07:34   They're willing to accept but you I don't see how anybody could deny that an iPad setup in

01:07:39   laptop configuration no matter which brand keyboard you're using is

01:07:44   Like it's backwards. It's top-heavy

01:07:47   The screen is the heavy part with the battery and the keyboard is the light part. Whereas a MacBook is

01:07:54   Oriented the right way where there's a heavy base and a super light screen

01:07:59   Mm-hmm

01:08:01   And I just think more and more but it's just taking a long time to find it. We're finding these other

01:08:06   Contexts whether it's the actual task you want to do like illustration like if you actually want to do, you know, you're drawing

01:08:14   something on a screen to mark it up. Or if it's just about where you are, that you're not at a

01:08:20   desk, you know, like you said, like these sysadmins who are walking around and maybe want to be doing

01:08:25   stuff on screen while they're standing, where an iPad is better and has nothing to do with iOS.

01:08:32   I guess I think we've all collectively spent too much time worrying about the differences between

01:08:36   iOS and macOS, not that they don't matter, but that a large part of it is just the human form

01:08:41   factor of where you are? Are you standing? Are you sitting? Are you actually typing?

01:08:46   That matter more.

01:08:47   Absolutely. Well, I think about, just going back to illustration, I think about how many

01:08:53   different sketchbooks I had in college, right? And granted, a sketchbook is a little bit

01:08:58   cheaper than a full-size computer. But still, you know, I was spending quite a lot of money

01:09:03   on six, seven, eight different sizes of paper because, you know, in some cases a notebook

01:09:12   is going to make sense.

01:09:13   In other cases a Post-it is going to make sense.

01:09:15   In other cases a, you know, 36 inch canvas is going to make sense.

01:09:20   It's all about finding the right tool and the right product that works for you.

01:09:27   And in the case of the iPad and everything that goes around it, what's really important

01:09:36   is how those things all fit together, right?

01:09:38   If I'm going to use my iPad, actually, one of the reasons I got my very first iPad back

01:09:44   in 2010 was yes, I wanted to sketch with it and I was really excited about that.

01:09:49   the time I was doing a job in a online t-shirt manufacturing company and I was indexing what

01:10:00   t-shirts we had in stock.

01:10:03   Before the iPad, that meant manually going down all of the aisles of the t-shirts with

01:10:09   a tiny little out-of-date Windows laptop on a cart where you'd just be pulling it over

01:10:15   this factory floor.

01:10:17   we went box by box to count how many sizes of smalls, how many sizes of mediums, how

01:10:23   many sizes of large. And once we got the iPad, we could very easily enter that into our online

01:10:29   inventory just by carrying the iPad around and selecting, you know, "Okay, this has

01:10:35   three smalls, great." And we no longer had to use the little cart or the heavy laptop

01:10:41   or worry about knocking it over to the ground, which happened, I think, on multiple occasions.

01:10:45   Right, so like in things in broad strokes the notebook computer

01:10:50   You know the traditional one like that doesn't have a detachable screen that turns into a tablet halfway

01:10:56   You know does tries to do both is duplicating the form factor of the typewriter and of the adding machine and of other

01:11:03   Things that people have done at desks for a long long time way before their computers

01:11:07   So the iPad in some ways it like in your story there is duplicating a clipboard

01:11:12   Which again is a long-standing form factor for getting work done.

01:11:17   It's just a different kind of work.

01:11:20   But it's largely based on the context of where you are, and it's not so much just purely an argument,

01:11:27   or even less really purely an argument about operating systems.

01:11:30   Yeah. The operating system could be, you know, going back to Steve Jobs' original comment about the iPad,

01:11:37   It's a blank slate.

01:11:39   All the operating system really needs to do

01:11:41   is get out of the way so that you can do your work.

01:11:44   Whether or not that operating system

01:11:46   lets you run one app at a time or 20 apps at a time,

01:11:50   well, the real question should be,

01:11:52   is this easier to do my work on than the thing I had before?

01:11:57   And if the answer is yes, then you get it.

01:12:01   Then it becomes part of your workflow.

01:12:02   I mean, obviously, assuming you have the money

01:12:04   and all of that, but that's how it fits in.

01:12:07   I carry a 9.7 inch iPad Pro and a MacBook Pro,

01:12:12   not because, oh, I wanna duplicate the writing functionality

01:12:15   on both and oh, that's gonna be so clunky, blah, blah, blah.

01:12:19   I carry it on the iPad Pro because there are times

01:12:22   when I wanna sketch something out

01:12:23   or there are times that I wanna write freehand.

01:12:25   And the iPad Pro has essentially replaced my old school,

01:12:28   like big Moleskine sketchbook that I used to carry around

01:12:31   with my MacBook Pro.

01:12:33   I guess I could do that as a convertible tablet

01:12:37   if I really wanted to, but that kill,

01:12:39   then we get into battery life talks.

01:12:42   That's honestly my big thing about multiple

01:12:45   convertible devices.

01:12:47   If I want to sketch, I'm probably gonna want to sketch

01:12:51   for like six, seven hours or have that ability

01:12:56   to just kind of pull this iPad out whenever

01:12:58   and just sketch on it.

01:13:00   Whereas my laptop is the big,

01:13:02   that's the thing that you carry around

01:13:04   to do your powerhouse work on when you're not at your desk.

01:13:07   And if you have a convertible where it's like,

01:13:10   oh, well, you turn it into tablet mode,

01:13:12   and then you kill most of your battery sketching

01:13:15   on the train, for instance,

01:13:16   and then you actually get to a point

01:13:18   where you wanna use it to do normal work,

01:13:21   then you have 5% battery and you have to plug in,

01:13:23   at which point it's a desk computer again.

01:13:26   - Did you see the, there's a new Windows 10,

01:13:31   I forget what they call these things,

01:13:33   the dual systems, what do they call them?

01:13:35   - The what, convertible laptops?

01:13:37   - Convertible, yeah, yeah.

01:13:37   So a new one from Porsche Design,

01:13:39   which was, it's not out yet,

01:13:43   but it was announced at the mobile web conference.

01:13:46   - At MWC? - MWC.

01:13:48   Which, and it looks nice.

01:13:49   It does, I'd like to see one.

01:13:52   But,

01:13:53   even though it looks nice,

01:13:57   and I think the hinge looks much nicer

01:13:59   than Microsoft's Surface hinge,

01:14:01   which doesn't, you know, like the, it doesn't--

01:14:04   - The little, it looks like it belongs

01:14:06   in an alien movie or something.

01:14:08   - Yeah, and it means that the two pieces don't sit flat.

01:14:11   There's like a gap between them.

01:14:13   They only, I don't know, that would bother me a little bit.

01:14:17   But with the Porsche Design 1, you can see though

01:14:20   that both halves of the, when it's in laptop mode,

01:14:23   both halves are about the same thickness.

01:14:25   The base is about as thick as the display.

01:14:28   So it's a really thick tablet.

01:14:30   as compared to an iPad.

01:14:33   Like to me, that design, and it's never

01:14:38   going to be the best laptop design

01:14:40   and never going to be the best tablet design.

01:14:43   But maybe if they're right and I'm wrong,

01:14:45   maybe optimizing for the middle is a good idea.

01:14:52   But I can't help but think, though,

01:14:53   that I would always much rather have an ideal laptop

01:14:57   design, or an ideal tablet design that can be put into a laptop that's maybe not as

01:15:04   nice when in laptop mode as the dual design.

01:15:09   But at least when I'm using it in one way, it's as good as it can be.

01:15:12   Yeah, I would rather carry two devices and have each device be the best it possibly can

01:15:19   be at that specific task than try and carry something that does all of those things.

01:15:25   I don't need a Swiss Army knife for my electronics.

01:15:28   I need smart, you know, dedicated electronics.

01:15:32   - Right, and there's just some weird context switching

01:15:35   that I don't think I would ever get used to there

01:15:36   where you're using a lower powered processor

01:15:40   when you're in tablet mode.

01:15:42   And like one of the big trade-offs with tablet mode

01:15:45   is this Porsche design thing is only advertised

01:15:47   as getting three hours of battery life when separated.

01:15:51   - Oh yeah, well it's the same problem

01:15:53   with the Surface Book as well,

01:15:54   where it just doesn't have,

01:15:56   the tablet does not have great battery life at all.

01:15:59   - Right.

01:16:00   It's just so many trade-offs involved.

01:16:02   It's so middling product both ways.

01:16:04   - Yeah.

01:16:05   - I do see them.

01:16:07   I mean, and part of this, just a friend made the,

01:16:12   I mean, you know, it's one anecdote,

01:16:13   but it meshes sort of what I see.

01:16:16   But a friend was in a coffee shop recently

01:16:18   and counted like, you know, a lot of people doing work.

01:16:24   or seemingly doing work.

01:16:25   And it was like nine MacBooks of various ages,

01:16:30   like one regular Windows notebook and two Surface books.

01:16:37   And no iPads, nobody using an iPad at all.

01:16:41   And so I can see why some people buy them.

01:16:48   And I think that--

01:16:49   and who knows what these people are doing.

01:16:51   But if it's a university students or something like that,

01:16:53   probably a lot of writing. It's like I said, I think if you're doing a lot of writing,

01:16:56   it makes sense to be doing it on a MacBook. And that, you know, Macs are more popular for that

01:17:01   sort of thing. But I don't know, I can see why Apple isn't going that way.

01:17:06   Yeah. And I don't think Apple would go that way unless they found the perfect way to blend it,

01:17:14   right? You know, we didn't get the iPhone before it was ready, just because they wanted to cram,

01:17:20   well, unless you count the Motorola Rocker, you don't really we didn't get a product that was like,

01:17:26   let's turn the iPod and the mobile phone and a breakthrough internet communications device into

01:17:32   one thing and have it be half-assed and not great. Like if they're going to do it, they're going to

01:17:37   do it well. Otherwise, they're just not going to do it. It's going to sit in some development lab

01:17:41   somewhere and never exist. Right. But it just doesn't make sense to me for either device,

01:17:46   you know, not that it doesn't make sense. I see why they came to that middling, just, you know,

01:17:51   well, we've got a little bit of battery in this top part that you can take off, but most of the

01:17:54   batteries in the base and stuff like that. It makes more sense to me to do it the iPad way,

01:18:00   where the iPad is the computer and the keyboard is just a dumb keyboard.

01:18:04   The keyboard is easy and low power and just works when it needs to work and doesn't work

01:18:10   when it doesn't. I feel like there's some kind of win that Apple and/or a third party, but probably

01:18:17   Apple because I think it would require something even better, a better smart connector on the iPad.

01:18:22   But I feel like there's gotta be some way to make the hinge better, you know, and just make the

01:18:28   take it from here it is closed coming out of my backpack to set up in front of me on this

01:18:37   table as a laptop, it's got to be a way to make that better, I think.

01:18:40   Yeah. The Logitech Create is pretty good, except for the part where it's only one position.

01:18:46   And if it was like, if the Logitech Create, if they could find a way to build a smart connector

01:18:51   that hinged, and didn't immediately disconnect when you moved a lot moved it like a little bit

01:18:56   backwards or a little bit forwards, like they found a way to make a Logitech Create that had

01:19:00   a hinged backing, but still connected via the smart connector, that would be the that would be

01:19:06   be the ultimate convertible if you really wanted a convertible tablet.

01:19:10   Like if you didn't need a laptop to do hardcore writing or multitasking on and

01:19:14   you just wanted to switch to iPad, like that's what you'd want.

01:19:17   Cause that to me is a perfect example of one of the ways that I,

01:19:21   which is why I've for me, for me, obviously, I mean, I'm, you know,

01:19:24   when I'm other than the podcast, uh, my work is writing.

01:19:29   Uh, and so for me, I, for what I do is work and you know, ignoring email,

01:19:35   but if I decide not to ignore my email,

01:19:37   I'm writing there too.

01:19:38   The laptop form factor is so much more conducive to my,

01:19:45   it's so much nicer for me for my work.

01:19:47   I'm not denying that it's the other way around

01:19:49   for other people, but it is.

01:19:50   But one of those things that's so nice,

01:19:51   especially if I'm away, not at my regular desk

01:19:54   where everything is already set up just so,

01:19:56   is that I can adjust the screen infinitely, right?

01:20:00   And so if there's a weird light that's giving me a glare

01:20:03   or whatever, or I'm sitting with a different posture,

01:20:06   or it's a weird height table or chair,

01:20:09   you could just sit there and twist it,

01:20:11   and get it perfect.

01:20:13   And with most iPad solutions, you can't.

01:20:15   - No, not unless you wanna keep it flat on the table

01:20:19   and work on the virtual keyboard, which sounds terrible.

01:20:23   - Well, and again, though, there's no configuration there.

01:20:25   Flat on the table is flat on the table.

01:20:27   - Yeah, well, I mean, you do flat on the table

01:20:28   and then you have an adjustable stand.

01:20:30   Like I'm using an adjustable stand right now

01:20:32   from Elevation Lab, I think, like a drafting stand that

01:20:35   adjusts multiple levels.

01:20:37   But that's still not a great configuration,

01:20:39   because then you have to fiddle, and it's not

01:20:42   as easy as the laptop just like, bam, open, done.

01:20:45   Ready to write.

01:20:47   So anyway, that's my rant on form factors.

01:20:49   All right, let me take a break here

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01:22:40   Only other thing I had in my notes for the show, well, maybe talk about Uber later a little, but

01:22:46   there was a story this week in the Wall Street Journal that came out that got a lot of publicity where

01:22:51   City where they wasn't 100% clearly written,

01:22:57   but the way it was written could best be interpreted

01:23:01   that this year's iPhone, the fancy rumored new iPhone

01:23:09   with the curved OLED screen, was going

01:23:12   to switch from the lightning adapter to a USB-C port.

01:23:16   Not another cable switch?

01:23:18   Oh, no.

01:23:19   They said Apple-- this is from the story

01:23:21   by Takashi Mochizuki for the Wall Street Journal.

01:23:29   This is their sources familiar with their plans.

01:23:31   They said Apple would introduce other updates, including

01:23:34   a USB-C port for the power cord and other peripheral devices,

01:23:37   instead of the company's original lightning connector.

01:23:41   These models would also do away with the physical home button,

01:23:44   they said.

01:23:44   These updates would give the iPhone features already

01:23:47   available on other smartphones.

01:23:51   I would just say with that last sentence that no other smartphone has a lightning connector,

01:23:56   so if they kept the lightning connector, they'd have a feature that's not available on other

01:24:00   smartphones.

01:24:03   This seemed weird to me, and my guess—and again, nobody told me a damn thing.

01:24:08   I don't have any little birdies.

01:24:09   But my guess is if there's some kind of supply chain thing that this reporter got,

01:24:14   it's that they're going to switch to it. I think the iPad Pro works like this already, where

01:24:20   it's a USB-C power brick, and you plug USB-C into the power brick, and then it goes to

01:24:26   Lightning on the other end for plugging into the device. Yep, and you get what, 29 watts and

01:24:34   supercharged. Right, now I don't know if the iPhone's going to ship with the 29 watt charger.

01:24:38   Probably not.

01:24:39   Probably not.

01:24:40   But it could ship with a higher wattage charger

01:24:44   that charges more quickly.

01:24:48   And does USB 3.0 data speeds, if you need that.

01:24:52   Although I kind of feel like data speeds over anything

01:24:56   other than the network are sort of--

01:24:59   but there's some professional contexts,

01:25:01   like for video or film and photography and stuff

01:25:04   like that, where you might want to--

01:25:07   that extra speed could be useful in an iPhone.

01:25:09   I don't know.

01:25:10   But the charging speed is the big one.

01:25:14   If you can charge faster, that's better.

01:25:17   - Charging faster is better.

01:25:19   The other reason why it would be good for photographers,

01:25:24   especially now that Apple has allowed you

01:25:27   to use the USB connector with the iPhone with photos,

01:25:32   you can offload your raw images direct

01:25:36   to your 128 gig iPhone,

01:25:39   rather than having to carry around an iPad Pro

01:25:42   if you wanna do some just quick proofing

01:25:46   or if you wanna post something to social media

01:25:48   very quickly while you're in the midst of something.

01:25:51   - Like a live Apple event or something like that.

01:25:53   - Yeah, exactly.

01:25:54   - Yeah, but it just did not ring true to me

01:26:01   'cause I do not think Apple,

01:26:03   I just don't think they're ever gonna ship iOS devices

01:26:06   with USB-C ports.

01:26:07   I know they could.

01:26:08   I know there's some people who are sort of hoping

01:26:10   that they do because it would simplify the universe

01:26:14   in some ways, like where everybody's phone,

01:26:17   everybody's phone bought within the last X months or years

01:26:21   can now use the same chargers.

01:26:22   But I don't think it makes sense from Apple's perspective.

01:26:27   And there are plenty of, like the sort of people

01:26:30   who are wishing for that are enlarged,

01:26:35   I think largely sort of the nerdy type people

01:26:38   who have, you know, Android and iOS devices around the house.

01:26:43   And I think there's untold tens of millions of people

01:26:47   who just already have an iPhone,

01:26:49   and other people who they live in the house have iPhones,

01:26:53   and when they buy a new iPhone, it would be nice

01:26:55   if they could just keep using the same lightning ports

01:26:58   that are already around the house.

01:27:00   Yep. I don't want to have to switch my port.

01:27:03   Right. And from those people's perspectives, the switch from 30-pin to lightning just happened.

01:27:08   Yes, exactly. Despite it being, what, four years ago?

01:27:11   It was months—it was just a few weeks ago, sorry.

01:27:15   It's still so fresh. I still have 30-pin connectors in my home.

01:27:18   Right. And I don't think Apple—I don't think Apple was the least bit surprised by the people who were upset by that change.

01:27:26   but I also, and I don't think it gave them any pause,

01:27:29   but I do think they're fully aware of, you know,

01:27:34   it would be worse to do it again.

01:27:37   - Yes, the nonsense could potentially be terrible.

01:27:41   Yeah, when you sent that you wanted to talk about this,

01:27:47   this definitely gave me and Renee pause

01:27:50   when we first saw it as well, because it's, you know,

01:27:53   We've seen stuff going on in the UK and in Europe where, you know, Apple has to ship

01:27:58   adapters in the box to make sure that everything's standardized with the EU Commission on charging

01:28:03   devices and making it easy for everybody.

01:28:06   But by and large, it just, I don't, it doesn't make sense to me to swap out the Lightning

01:28:14   port when the Lightning port still does proprietary things that Apple wants it to.

01:28:19   They swap out from Lightning to USB-C.

01:28:22   I guess you could still do made for iPhone USB-C devices.

01:28:28   But I don't know how that licensing would work if they're

01:28:30   on top of that also licensing USB-C for a port.

01:28:34   I don't know if that increases their component costs in terms of using

01:28:39   a developed port like that or whether they're just paying a flat fee to use USB

01:28:44   in general from the consortium.

01:28:47   I'm not really sure the behind the scenes aspect in that.

01:28:50   What I do know is we're eventually going to have to have

01:28:54   USB-C on one end because that is where

01:28:58   the computers are going.

01:28:59   And from that aspect, the rumor that USB-C will be involved

01:29:05   in a capacity like you said, as a charging capacity

01:29:09   on the other end of that cord, that makes sense to me

01:29:12   as like encourage consumers to hurry it up

01:29:15   with the switching.

01:29:16   Yeah, there's other things that Apple can do with Lightning that people...

01:29:22   I mean, and again, let's just get it out of the way. There is a very selfish...

01:29:26   they get the made-for-iPhone licensing thing makes the company money and gives them control

01:29:31   and limits what other companies can do with iPhone peripherals.

01:29:35   And that's just in Apple's own selfish interest to maintain that.

01:29:40   The angle that's good for iPhone users is really just, it's that mass market, look,

01:29:49   you've already got these cords all over your house and you can just keep using them for

01:29:53   years to come.

01:29:58   But there's little things too, like the fact that because Lightning is completely Apple's

01:30:01   proprietary thing, they can change it in software.

01:30:05   And a big part of Lightning's design is that it's changeable in software.

01:30:09   So for example, that's why the lightning headphones

01:30:13   that they started shipping last year

01:30:15   required you to update to iOS 10.

01:30:17   Like if you plugged them into an iOS 9 device,

01:30:19   you got an error message that said you have to update

01:30:22   this device to iOS 10 to use this peripheral

01:30:24   because it was a software change that enabled them to work.

01:30:27   And they can't do that

01:30:30   if they switch to an industry proprietary.

01:30:32   I mean, maybe there's a way to do proprietary stuff

01:30:34   over the standard, but I don't think it's as easy.

01:30:38   No.

01:30:40   So I think that the change-- and it surprised me

01:30:43   which people piped up on Twitter and who seemed to think

01:30:47   that this was reasonable.

01:30:48   And again, it's not the most ridiculous thing in the world.

01:30:52   If it turns out that this is true, if I'm wrong,

01:30:56   and they're worth like Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI,

01:30:59   the famed super well-sourced analyst over there,

01:31:02   came out with a report a day or two after the Wall Street

01:31:05   Journal report, not calling him out by name, but coming about as close as he could because

01:31:10   the entire report was more or less, "No, it's because these new phones are still going to

01:31:13   have lightning."

01:31:16   But they might have USB-C on the power brick side.

01:31:19   And he even talked about fast charging and stuff like that.

01:31:21   So if he's wrong, if I'm wrong, and they really do ship a new iPhone in September and it has

01:31:28   USB-C, I wouldn't find it shocking.

01:31:30   I would just find it mildly surprising.

01:31:34   To play devil's advocate here, let's say that Apple decides to go the USB-C route because

01:31:40   it makes more sense to them from a, I don't know, consortium perspective.

01:31:44   Maybe they're getting pressured in the EU, maybe it just makes more sense as they continue

01:31:49   to expand globally to just have one universal port and not have to worry about adapters

01:31:54   or donkles or anything like that.

01:31:57   I could see them switching and just being like, "Hey guys, this is the new normal, you

01:32:02   You know, our MacBook Pros have USB-C now, now your iPhones have USB-C, soon the new

01:32:08   iMacs are going to have USB-C, and this is our new standard charging port.

01:32:15   However, I just don't think it's good business sense for the company because of all the reasons

01:32:21   that we've mentioned before.

01:32:24   It makes more sense for them to have control.

01:32:29   And also, if you look at the rest of their peripherals, including the Lightning-based

01:32:34   headphones that if they change the Lightning port, it'll only be there for a year, they

01:32:38   just released brand new, you know, the AirPods and the Beats X have Lightning connectors,

01:32:48   and then the older Beats headphones, the Solo and the PowerBeats, both still charge via

01:32:54   mini USB or micro USB.

01:32:57   it's one of those things where if USB-C standardization was coming down the pipeline as this is going

01:33:03   to be our charging port now and forever, you know, so help us God, you'd think that they

01:33:08   would start it with the AirPods and the BeatZacks and all of their accessories that start to

01:33:15   have these things.

01:33:16   And the fact that all of the Apple Pencils would essentially be made useless down the

01:33:21   line because they use Lightning as well.

01:33:23   And could you charge an Apple Pencil via USB-C?

01:33:26   That's a good question.

01:33:28   Yeah, the rumor makes my head hurt, honestly.

01:33:37   - Yeah, I think that the analogy to the headphone port

01:33:41   is exactly right, except that you should ignore the fact

01:33:47   that for now, they're shipping the iPhones

01:33:54   without a headphone port with lightning headphones.

01:33:58   The lightning headphones are a stopgap.

01:34:00   And the real transition is to wireless.

01:34:04   And it's just the fact that at this point,

01:34:06   it costs 150 bucks or so for them to sell

01:34:11   the wireless ones that are as good

01:34:14   as they think the experience should be.

01:34:16   I think we just have to wait a few years

01:34:17   for the price of those to come down.

01:34:19   But that in hindsight, five, six, seven years ago,

01:34:22   we look back and we don't really remember

01:34:24   the lightning headphones error so much.

01:34:26   We, in our memories, it'll be,

01:34:29   we used to plug in headphones

01:34:31   via the 100-year-old headphone jack,

01:34:34   and now we use wireless headphones.

01:34:37   - Yeah, no one's gonna really think about it.

01:34:38   - And I think that's exactly what's gonna happen

01:34:40   with charging, is that lightning is the charging port

01:34:44   for all of these devices, except for Macs,

01:34:48   until some sort of no port charging is the standard.

01:34:53   Where by which I mean, I have this whole rant

01:34:58   that I've been meaning to go on about calling

01:35:00   conductive or inductive charging, whatever it is.

01:35:03   But when you have to still be in physical contact,

01:35:04   calling that wireless charging,

01:35:06   'cause that's not wireless.

01:35:08   - No, it's just, well, I mean,

01:35:10   it's wireless from the phone to the pad,

01:35:14   but the pad is still wired.

01:35:15   - Right.

01:35:16   And Apple is actually pretty careful about it.

01:35:18   Apple does not describe the Apple Watch

01:35:20   as having wireless charging.

01:35:22   Because it doesn't.

01:35:23   It's inductive charging.

01:35:24   Right.

01:35:26   So I don't know where we're going with that.

01:35:28   I don't know if the next step is going

01:35:30   to be inductive charging for these devices,

01:35:32   or if it'll be a true wireless thing where it doesn't actually

01:35:35   have to be in physical contact, and you can just

01:35:37   have it in general proximity.

01:35:39   And it'll magically shoot power over the air

01:35:42   and not make us full of cancer.

01:35:45   Yeah.

01:35:45   - I think that's the big problem there right now.

01:35:48   - Right, well, you know, I mean,

01:35:50   Wi-Fi hasn't killed us yet, so.

01:35:51   - It's true, it's true. - I'm optimistic.

01:35:53   It just sounds weird though.

01:35:54   - 20 years and counting.

01:35:55   - Right, it's like when we first started using Wi-Fi,

01:35:58   it really weirded me out.

01:35:59   It's like, this seems like it should be impossible.

01:36:01   I mean, and then you just think like,

01:36:03   these waves are shooting through me right now.

01:36:08   My body is full of gigabytes.

01:36:09   - And let's not even talk about cell phones.

01:36:12   All these memes inside me.

01:36:14   - Right, but until we can do that,

01:36:17   until they can get,

01:36:18   Apple wants to get rid of ports,

01:36:21   not replace ports with one from another.

01:36:24   - Agreed.

01:36:25   - And they don't give two craps about proprietary over,

01:36:29   or they give a crap, but they're,

01:36:31   they see proprietary as a strength, not as a weakness.

01:36:35   - Correct.

01:36:35   - And I do think it's super telling

01:36:38   that the AirPods have a lightning adapter.

01:36:44   They could have had USB-C. They absolutely could have shipped with a USB-C charging brick

01:36:48   and they chose not to.

01:36:50   Right, and it would have been a big tell, I think.

01:36:57   I still think it's weird.

01:36:59   It's funny, I understand why the pencil works the way that it does, in terms of having a

01:37:04   male lightning instead of a female lightning.

01:37:09   so that it's less convenient

01:37:13   when if you just wanna plug your pencil

01:37:14   into something you already have laying around your house.

01:37:17   But it's more importantly, it's,

01:37:19   whenever you wanna use a pencil,

01:37:20   you must have an iPad Pro nearby to use it on.

01:37:24   And if the pencil is out,

01:37:26   you can just plug it into the iPad for 30 seconds

01:37:28   and get a usable charge out of it.

01:37:30   It's not elegant. - But it looks silly.

01:37:32   - It looks silly.

01:37:34   It's not elegant, but it's a very,

01:37:36   it's practicality winning out over elegance,

01:37:41   whereas the AirPods in comparison are one of the most,

01:37:45   it's just, I can't stop raving about how I love

01:37:49   every single aspect of it, including the fact

01:37:51   that to charge it, you can just plug it into any iPhone

01:37:54   charger you have laying around for a couple of minutes

01:37:56   once a week or so.

01:37:57   - Exactly, you don't have to worry about it,

01:37:59   and if your buds ever go dark,

01:38:00   you just pop 'em in the case.

01:38:02   And it's very seamless.

01:38:05   Honestly, can I tell you my biggest wish

01:38:07   for the rumored iPads?

01:38:10   - Yes.

01:38:12   - I want wireless charging, real wireless charging,

01:38:15   area charging for the pencil built into this mythical

01:38:19   10.5 inch iPad, right?

01:38:22   Where if you're in Bluetooth proximity,

01:38:25   you're gonna charge it.

01:38:27   Which I just think would be amazing.

01:38:28   'Cause then that way the pencil never dies.

01:38:31   It just, it charges it whenever it's nearby.

01:38:35   And if you have to make contact,

01:38:37   then maybe they figure out some way

01:38:39   to induct a charge through the display, right?

01:38:44   Where whenever you're drawing on it,

01:38:46   it's actually sending a tiny charge

01:38:48   through the tip into the pencil.

01:38:50   I know nothing about engineering,

01:38:52   so all this may sound like crazy talk,

01:38:54   and it probably is, but that is my dream scenario.

01:38:57   - Is it possible for them to announce that

01:39:00   right now in March 2017, I don't know either.

01:39:03   I don't know.

01:39:04   - I don't know, I have no idea.

01:39:05   - But if it is, boy, that would be a huge selling point

01:39:07   and I can't, I would imagine that that's the sort of thing

01:39:10   that would get people who bought a pencil a year ago

01:39:12   to buy a new one.

01:39:13   - Oh yeah, in a heartbeat and a new iPad

01:39:16   because you need the new iPad.

01:39:17   - 'Cause it gets rid of the awkward lightning,

01:39:21   it gets rid of that, right?

01:39:23   So let's presume, and then I think they could get rid

01:39:25   of the cap.

01:39:26   - Yeah, and then you could add a eraser

01:39:29   if you really wanted.

01:39:30   The cap is a huge--

01:39:31   people complain about the cap because the cap is easily lost.

01:39:35   So you get rid of the cap.

01:39:36   It's entirely self-contained.

01:39:38   So then it's-- that's super Apple-like, right?

01:39:41   No input, no output.

01:39:43   And it really is--

01:39:44   I was just talking with a friend the other day

01:39:46   about how his biggest gripe with--

01:39:49   well, I'll tell you who it is, Ben Thompson.

01:39:52   This mysterious source.

01:39:54   But he loves the pencil, but he doesn't use it all the time.

01:39:57   But if it's in range of your iPad when your iPad's on,

01:40:03   they communicate with each other so that it's ready for you

01:40:06   to use.

01:40:07   But it's always in range of his iPad

01:40:08   when his iPad is on because he's taking it out of the same bag.

01:40:11   He's got a bag that he keeps his pencil and his iPad in.

01:40:15   And so even when he's not using the pencil and just reading

01:40:19   on the iPad, it's slowly draining the pencil

01:40:22   because it has a communication.

01:40:23   And then when he does go to use the pencil, it's always dead.

01:40:26   - Yeah, exactly, the pencil's always at 5%

01:40:29   because the pencil doesn't quite understand

01:40:31   the difference between I'm sitting in your bag

01:40:33   ready to be used and I'm being drawn with actively

01:40:38   and need battery life.

01:40:39   - Right, and the reason that this is mildly annoying

01:40:41   is instead of infuriating is because it doesn't take

01:40:44   that long to give the pencil a usable charge,

01:40:46   but still it happens every time.

01:40:48   And if your idea-- - It's still annoying.

01:40:50   - Your idea would solve this problem.

01:40:52   - Yeah, well it's a step further from what they already do

01:40:56   with the smart connector, right?

01:40:57   Where the smart connector, to me,

01:40:59   feels like this in-betweener stage.

01:41:02   Because it has solved the need for Bluetooth keyboards,

01:41:05   at least the Bluetooth keyboards,

01:41:06   the keyboards that use the smart connector,

01:41:08   it's solved that need for those keyboards

01:41:10   to constantly be charged separately.

01:41:12   It's just, do I wanna use a keyboard with my iPad today?

01:41:17   Cool, I'm just gonna set it up.

01:41:18   And because of the way that the smart connector connects,

01:41:21   like, hooks into the keyboard, it's good.

01:41:23   And if they figured out a way to wirelessly charge devices,

01:41:27   then we could have variable stand keyboards too,

01:41:31   which would also be really cool.

01:41:32   - That would be cool.

01:41:33   And it's definitely, I think it's a definite situation,

01:41:36   circling back to what I said before,

01:41:37   where there's an awful lot of people

01:41:40   who only use their iPad with a keyboard sometimes.

01:41:44   Because the whole point of why they're using an iPad

01:41:47   is they're often using the iPad in these contexts

01:41:50   where you either don't want a keyboard

01:41:51   or don't need a keyboard, you know,

01:41:54   it's just not that important

01:41:55   that you have a hardware keyboard.

01:41:56   And you do that, do that, do that, do that.

01:41:58   And the thing that's great about the smart connector

01:42:01   is then when you do need a keyboard,

01:42:02   you don't have to worry if it's charged.

01:42:04   - Yep, exactly.

01:42:05   You just throw it on, use it, and then put it away.

01:42:08   And then you can forget about it for another three months.

01:42:10   - Yeah.

01:42:12   Yeah, that's a great idea.

01:42:13   I hope you're right.

01:42:14   - I hope I'm right too. (laughs)

01:42:17   - You wanna talk about Uber quickly?

01:42:19   - Yeah, let's talk about Uber.

01:42:21   - Boy, I don't know what to do.

01:42:23   I feel like I'm gonna confess something.

01:42:25   I'm gonna be honest and straightforward.

01:42:27   'Cause I don't feel, I feel like that's the,

01:42:32   it's, I feel guilty otherwise.

01:42:34   And I feel guilty about what I'm about to say.

01:42:36   I'm gonna confess.

01:42:37   I have not deleted the Uber app from my phone.

01:42:40   - I also have not deleted the Uber app from my phone,

01:42:43   despite the fact that I think the company is despicable.

01:42:45   - Right.

01:42:46   - I haven't used it since then.

01:42:48   - I have.

01:42:49   - But I also haven't deleted it.

01:42:50   I have used, I have used Duper.

01:42:51   Because there's the only one that can get a black car

01:42:55   in Philadelphia and the black cars have SUVs

01:42:59   and sometimes, like I went out to dinner with some friends

01:43:01   and we needed to fit five adults in a car.

01:43:05   So I still use it and I justify it in my head as,

01:43:12   well, I know they're losing money on every ride they give.

01:43:14   (laughing)

01:43:17   I'm robbing some poor defenseless VC.

01:43:20   - Right.

01:43:22   But I feel terrible about it.

01:43:23   And it's, I don't know.

01:43:26   At some point it's, you know, I don't know.

01:43:29   What I want is I want Lyft to connect

01:43:31   to these black car drivers.

01:43:33   Black car drivers I think would jump at it.

01:43:35   - Yeah.

01:43:36   I mean, I don't think at this point anybody is like,

01:43:39   yes, I love working for Uber.

01:43:42   I am proud to work, maybe Travis, what's his face?

01:43:46   - Well, the drivers aren't. - Yeah.

01:43:48   No, but that's what I'm saying.

01:43:50   I'm like, I think the drivers are, you know,

01:43:53   looking for other options if they can.

01:43:56   They still wanna, you know, they wanna drive

01:43:58   in the car sharing economy because it's a good way

01:44:00   right now to make money, at least until the bottom

01:44:02   falls out, but I don't think any of them is like,

01:44:06   yes, I feel so loyal to Uber and Uber has stood right by me

01:44:10   because Uber has not really stood right by anybody.

01:44:14   They've kind of been huge dicks.

01:44:17   - There's gotta be a way, and I know that,

01:44:19   and I understand that my argument

01:44:22   that I know that they're losing money on every ride,

01:44:24   that that's actually their plan,

01:44:26   and it's, you know, that the basic idea,

01:44:29   it's not really a secret,

01:44:30   is that they wanna monopolize the market,

01:44:32   and then once they have the monopoly on a market,

01:44:34   they can raise the rates to where it's profitable.

01:44:36   I'm not quite sure how they ever get there,

01:44:42   because at the point where they raise the rates,

01:44:44   I don't see how new competitors don't pop up.

01:44:47   Like, I don't see how they have a real path to a monopoly.

01:44:52   'Cause then their whole argument is,

01:44:56   they're destroying the existing regulations.

01:44:59   It's not like they're gonna get new regulations put in place

01:45:01   that say that in the city of Philadelphia,

01:45:03   Uber is the only ride sharing app available.

01:45:06   - Yeah, they're not gonna benefit Uber,

01:45:08   they're gonna benefit all ride sharing companies.

01:45:11   - Right.

01:45:11   17 might pop up. I can see them getting to monopoly status by taking down the cabs, if the cabs don't form up and create their own rival company, which some have already done.

01:45:22   I can see them getting to that point, but like you said, at the issue where they start having to raise rates, then it becomes, okay, well, who has the cheapest service?

01:45:36   it's a race to the bottom a little bit.

01:45:38   And it honestly depends on whether or not VCs

01:45:41   are willing to take that risk and be like,

01:45:44   yeah, I'm gonna fund this company

01:45:45   because Uber needs to be taken down.

01:45:47   It's gotten too big, too big, too violent.

01:45:52   Or does it turn into the thing where the VCs

01:45:54   are kinda like, well, we're just not gonna fund

01:45:56   new transportation startups because no one's figured out

01:45:59   how to make them profitable without price gouging consumers?

01:46:02   - Right, and I wanna, you know, there's so many,

01:46:05   Uber is sort of like Silicon Valley's version of the Trump administration, where there's

01:46:10   like a new scandal every day, or even by the hour.

01:46:14   You know, it's like, a daily list of the scandals doesn't keep up with the fact, you

01:46:19   know what I mean?

01:46:20   Like, if you only paid attention once a day, it's like, we're recording this on Friday,

01:46:25   March 3rd.

01:46:26   Like, on Thursday, March 2nd, if you only paid attention at noon, the news was President

01:46:31   Trump says Attorney General Jeff Sessions does not need to recuse himself.

01:46:35   But by six o'clock in the night, he recused himself. It's like you have to

01:46:39   check every three hours to see what's going on.

01:46:41   And it's the same with Uber. But like there was a thing this week where an

01:46:45   Uber driver had taped a... he recognized that he had Travis

01:46:49   Kalanick as his passenger in a car and he videotaped it. And Kalanick had

01:46:55   said some somewhat embarrassing things to the

01:46:57   driver somewhat yeah but I I didn't I didn't think it was outrageous it you

01:47:03   know I mean and I'm just I'm vaguely uncomfortable with the idea that he

01:47:08   taped him in the first place and I don't think what he said was all that

01:47:11   outrageous it was a little rude but it I thought the driver was sort of nutty too

01:47:16   yeah the problem is that there's already the narrative right there's already the

01:47:21   narrative that he's a jerk and a horrible person's yeah get him caught on

01:47:26   tape doing anything jerkish. Yeah. And it blows up even further. Right, exactly. I think that's

01:47:32   serenity. I think that's exactly what happened where it's like everybody knows that this Travis

01:47:35   Kalanick is at least a bit of a jerk and that he's been, him and his company have been caught doing

01:47:41   really jerky, exceptionally jerky things lately and you hear and he's secretly taped saying

01:47:47   something and what he said is at least somewhere on the jerky spectrum and then you just jump to

01:47:51   the worst conclusion. Whereas I think if I actually watched the video and I was like this isn't

01:47:55   that big. Yeah, it's not it's not that big. And speaking,

01:48:00   speaking of how it just seems like a new Uber story pops up

01:48:04   every day, literally while we're recording this. The Verge

01:48:09   Dateline 30 minutes ago,

01:48:11   the New York Times via the Verge via the New York Times reports

01:48:17   that Uber has a secret worldwide program called gray ball to hide

01:48:20   from government employees looking to catch Uber cars

01:48:23   operating in violation of local regulations.

01:48:26   Because this, yeah.

01:48:28   I don't even know what to say about this because it's just,

01:48:35   it's literally as we're saying, hey, Uber just keeps on getting

01:48:40   caught doing really horrible stuff. Now there's another, I

01:48:45   don't know, I yeah, like this is the, this sounds like something

01:48:49   that a mildly shady company would go for. Be like, yeah, let's run some software to make sure you

01:48:55   don't pick up passengers who might be government employees because we're breaking labor practices

01:49:01   in certain cities. There's a whole lot to unpack there. So it looks like what they did is when they

01:49:07   were in municipalities where Uber was deemed to be contrary to the local regulations, Uber would

01:49:15   appoint somebody to figure out where the regulator's offices were and then look for anybody opening

01:49:24   the Uber app on a frequent basis from those locations and then I guess not pick them up.

01:49:32   Show fake cars. They'd also check the credit card information to see if the card was tied

01:49:37   to a police credit union. Wow.

01:49:41   unknown to Mr. England and other authorities,

01:49:44   I think this was the guy from Portland,

01:49:46   some of the digital cars they saw in the app

01:49:49   did not represent actual vehicles,

01:49:50   and the Uber drivers they were able to hail

01:49:52   also quickly canceled.

01:49:54   That was because Uber had tagged Mr. England

01:49:56   and his colleagues, essentially grayballing them

01:49:58   as city officials based on data collected from the app

01:50:00   and in other ways.

01:50:01   So yeah, not a good company.

01:50:04   - No, not having a great week as far as PR goes.

01:50:09   - But the thing that I wanted to bring up

01:50:11   was that among this avalanche of these things,

01:50:15   the one story that, to me, is the sun

01:50:20   to the planets of these other scandals or a series of planets,

01:50:24   but the one at the center of it is Susan Fowler-Raggetti's story

01:50:28   of her year-long employment, which, to me, is different.

01:50:33   Because I've reread her entire piece at least three times.

01:50:38   It's extraordinarily well-written.

01:50:41   And I'm guessing that you've noticed the ways that it's

01:50:44   well-written.

01:50:45   Because--

01:50:45   Oh, absolutely.

01:50:46   It's well-written on like three different levels,

01:50:49   where she makes her case extremely well.

01:50:52   She obviously had her wits about her for the entire year

01:50:55   that she worked-- right from the beginning, when she first

01:50:58   started to be harassed.

01:51:01   She documented it.

01:51:02   And she kept emails and screenshots of chats.

01:51:07   And it's so clear from her writing

01:51:09   that she could back it all up.

01:51:12   But also, the tone that she took in the article is--

01:51:17   necessary is not the right word.

01:51:23   But it was taken from a way that she couldn't be easily dismissed.

01:51:30   And it's the sort of tonal tap dancing that a woman has to take that a man

01:51:38   doesn't even have to think about.

01:51:39   Yeah, it was written, you're absolutely right in terms of the, I'm trying to think of the right

01:51:46   word here, it was written in a very level platform where she's basically like, "Here are all these

01:51:54   accusations that I'm laying out, but I'm not laying them out in a way that makes me sound

01:51:59   especially angry or especially vindictive towards the company." She basically laid it out almost

01:52:06   factually, almost like a lawyer would lay out, "Here are the things that happened to me. On this

01:52:12   date, this happened. On this date, this happened." But not written so drolly that you can't read

01:52:21   between the lines and actually get a good picture of what's happening.

01:52:25   The specific nature of the harassment that she experienced is very specific to being a woman in a largely male company where male on female harassment is clearly tolerated at an institutional level.

01:52:46   And it's so as you can't just say if the tables returned and it was reversed because there's no such equivalent. There is no

01:52:52   There's no company in the world

01:52:54   That's like the uber for women where men at a 50 to 1 ratio as engineers get harassed

01:53:01   but if a man had suffered the moral equivalent of of this wrongdoing at

01:53:07   You know in some other than sexual harassment or some other way

01:53:12   just something that everybody would agree was equally wrong on the moral spectrum.

01:53:17   A man would document it in a way where I don't think he would have to even think about hiding his anger

01:53:22   at what had gone on and what was tolerated.

01:53:25   Whereas she did, not hide, but like tap dance between coming across as angry

01:53:33   and not crossing the line into acting like it's a joke or it's not serious.

01:53:41   - Yeah, she had to pitch it very much, as you said,

01:53:45   between the lines because of retribution.

01:53:49   I mean, we've all been following the stories

01:53:51   and the fact that Uber has gone, you know,

01:53:54   potentially sent lawyers after her this week,

01:53:57   and I don't know, you know, the fact, how factual that is

01:53:59   or where that stands right now beyond her claims.

01:54:03   But the mere fact that like, she had to write this

01:54:06   in such a way because she was worried about retribution

01:54:09   from a company that arguably, she has a pretty darn good lawsuit against to begin with. Whereas,

01:54:16   as you said, a man could very easily just write the angriest of angry medium rats and

01:54:23   just be, you know, like, "This has happened to me," and "How dare this company," and "This

01:54:27   is a disgusting, you know, violation of human rights and my rights as a human, like, my

01:54:33   writes in personally and, you know, I can't even write in that tone because it just makes me want

01:54:40   to vomit. But it's, yeah. And also, honestly, in comparison, I believe you linked to a Medium

01:54:49   article by one other woman who wrote about her Uber experiences. And hers were also very chilling

01:54:55   and very bothersome, but she wrote it in a much, in a much vaguer, more, not quite salacious style,

01:55:03   but it was definitely written as more of a story and more of a, you know, here's a peek into my

01:55:09   life. Whereas Susan Fowlers was very much, you know, removed, emotionally removed. It was written

01:55:17   very analytically. Pete: And it, you know, there's, the truth is that an angry woman is going to be

01:55:24   dismissed by X percent of people who read her, mostly men, but also some women. You know,

01:55:30   there's a woman who's angry in public, gets a very different reaction, and very different adjectives

01:55:38   are used to describe her emotional state than a man with the equivalent amount of anger. And I'm,

01:55:46   you know, I feel a lot certain about that statement. I also feel like, even though I'm

01:55:53   certain of it and I'm incredibly sympathetic to it. I don't even feel, I feel like part of the reason

01:55:59   that that's the case is that I'm not in a position to even judge it, right? Like it's,

01:56:05   like I can judge what they did to Susan Fowler, but I'm not, I feel like as a man, especially,

01:56:15   you know, with every privilege you could possibly, possibly have in this country,

01:56:22   I'm not in a position to judge just how widespread that unfairness is in terms of how we see

01:56:32   deal with things like angry, people who are rightfully angry in a professional context.

01:56:37   But she obviously is very well, very familiar with it.

01:56:42   [laughter]

01:56:43   Well, you know the verbal gymnastics that you need to thread, especially working in a company

01:56:49   like that, you know, she had a year of experience having to dance through clearly the insanity of

01:56:57   the HR process and her higher-ups. Coming out of that, you know, you're gonna know, like, the

01:57:04   second that you write a piece like that, unfortunately, the second that a woman writes a

01:57:08   piece like that, the first thing that a certain subsection of the internet is going to do is try

01:57:13   and find ways of proving that she's crazy or she was arrested or that some small aspect of it isn't

01:57:20   true and therefore the whole thing is in question the whole thing is null and void exactly oh she

01:57:25   cheated on a test when she was in the seventh grade so she's untrustworthy right you know

01:57:29   or she claims this one thing happened on you know the first monday of july 2015 but guess what that

01:57:36   was a federal holiday it was that was independence day uber was closed yeah exactly it actually

01:57:42   happened July 3rd. But she lied, therefore the entire thing is called into question. Yeah,

01:57:48   it's unfortunately, there is a certain subsection of the population that delights in trying to poke

01:57:56   holes in stories like these. And I don't think that, you know, we should take everything at

01:58:01   face value. Obviously, there is value to be had in fact-checking and not believing stories,

01:58:07   you know, without doing some digging. But there's a difference between independent verification and,

01:58:13   you know, and just going after somebody because they're saying something that you don't want to

01:58:20   be true. So you immediately jump into attacking the first possible opportunity.

01:58:25   Jim Collison,

01:58:25   It would occur to me too, and I just can't say it enough, and it sounds trite, but just how courageous it was for her to publish this.

01:58:35   Because she didn't have to...

01:58:36   Under her own name.

01:58:37   Under her own name, which it gives it, you know, I'm not saying it's necessary.

01:58:41   Like the other article that I linked to that you mentioned that was published under a pseudonym, and she admitted it up front.

01:58:47   She said, "I'm not comfortable sharing my name. This is a pseudonym, so there's no misdirection there."

01:58:51   But, you know, and again, I'm not saying that that wasn't

01:58:54   useful and courageous in and of itself,

01:58:56   but doing it under her own name is more courageous

01:59:00   and it leaves more credence to it.

01:59:01   Because she clearly knew to expect a backlash.

01:59:07   And I think it's obvious that,

01:59:10   you read the story and the part that to me where you just,

01:59:16   the part of her story where you just go, whoa,

01:59:18   was the part where many months into her employment at Uber,

01:59:23   I mean, and the other reason why I should say this

01:59:27   is that she now works at Stripe.

01:59:28   She hasn't, she's already landed another job.

01:59:30   She doesn't have to, you know,

01:59:31   she's not like she has to worry about her employability.

01:59:33   She's got a great job at a great company.

01:59:35   So it'd be easy to just say, you know what?

01:59:36   Now I have a great job at a great company.

01:59:38   Thank God that's over and let it go.

01:59:41   But by coming public and, you know,

01:59:45   it's obviously the most well-known she's ever been.

01:59:47   you know, she's a published author at O'Reilly, but uh, so I'm not saying that it's not like she hasn't had a

01:59:52   You know

01:59:55   Stuff in the public eye before but it's a different kind of notoriety, right? Um

01:59:59   The whole the part of the story where you really just go I just went whoa was the part where

02:00:08   She and some other women engineers at uber months later

02:00:12   talking amongst themselves

02:00:14   realized they all had problems with the same guy, a manager above them. And several of them

02:00:23   had reported their incidents to Uber's HR department. And all of them were told the same

02:00:29   thing that, "Well, thank you for reporting it, but we're uncomfortable taking any action against him

02:00:36   at this time because it's his first offense and he's a high performer." And it's like, "Whoa."

02:00:44   So they just say that and you realize, well, how did they think that they were going to get away with it?

02:00:49   How would they you know, how did they think that eventually?

02:00:51   Some of these women would

02:00:55   Figure this out in a company. No one wants to talk about this stuff. It's all based on the assumption that even if they do

02:01:02   They'll get the message that you know

02:01:06   Let you know this stuff is okay for high performers and yeah, let's let dogs lie. What are they gonna do?

02:01:14   go public, that they seem like at a certain, whether it was, you know, stated or just unconscious

02:01:21   between the HR people who made the decision to deal with it this way. HR clearly assumed,

02:01:27   at Uber, clearly assumed that these women would, none of these women would go public.

02:01:32   Yeah, well because it's too much of a risk. It's a, you know, again, we go back to the,

02:01:39   it's the credibility issue. You may never land a job again if you don't have your facts

02:01:43   in your story and things to back things up, you know, to back your evidence up.

02:01:47   Right. Like there's Susan Fowler Getty by going public under her own name, and with as much

02:01:53   scathing detail as she did, was willing to do something that a company valued at $70 billion

02:01:58   was willing to bet she wouldn't. Yep. Which is amazing. Yeah. And you talk about courageous.

02:02:08   You know, people have been saying under the radar, don't go work for Uber, don't go work for Uber,

02:02:13   don't go work for Uber, especially if you're a woman, but just in general, it's just not a

02:02:17   good culture. But there really hasn't been somebody standing up on a chair and yelling,

02:02:23   "No, don't go work for Uber because you will be sorry," until Fowler. Like, there's just,

02:02:30   there wasn't that kind of like, damning public, like, I won't even invent like, "Skatery! New

02:02:39   word! But no, it's such a scathing critique of not only the HR department, I don't know how the

02:02:46   people who work in that HR department have spines or stomachs at that point. Like, I wonder how many

02:02:52   people have quit in that department specifically over the years. And also, I forget from the story,

02:02:57   but I wonder the gender of the HR department liaisons too.

02:03:02   Because if it's—

02:03:03   Pete: I think she said that some of them were women.

02:03:05   - Yeah, which just, that's an even bigger gut punch.

02:03:08   - Or maybe all, I don't even know.

02:03:08   - Yeah.

02:03:09   That's, that's, it strikes me just as such a betrayal

02:03:14   to have to say to somebody's face,

02:03:17   "Sorry, we're not gonna do anything about your,

02:03:20   you know, your emotional or physical harassment,"

02:03:24   despite the fact that it could happen to anybody.

02:03:27   You know, we're just gonna look in your face and say no.

02:03:32   Yeah, that's the kind of thing that makes me

02:03:35   want to never use their service again.

02:03:36   And it's just like, I commend everybody

02:03:40   who's deleted the app and burned it.

02:03:42   It's, yeah.

02:03:45   - All right, I gotta delete the app.

02:03:47   It's terrible. - Yeah, you gotta.

02:03:48   (laughing)

02:03:49   It's gone.

02:03:50   - I will say, just in terms of people

02:03:53   who've been outspoken critics, I've long followed,

02:03:57   I'm sure, I don't know if you know her,

02:03:59   but I'm sure you're aware of her,

02:04:00   Sara Lacy, founder of Pando.com.

02:04:04   And she has been on the,

02:04:07   Uber is actually a terrible company beat for years now.

02:04:11   - Or a path, yeah. - And so the difference,

02:04:13   I would say, is that she's always been from the out,

02:04:17   she's been a journalist her whole career.

02:04:19   She's been writing about it from the outside

02:04:21   as a journalist observing the company, not as an insider.

02:04:25   That's the difference between her and Fowler.

02:04:30   - Yeah, she can only get anonymous quotes

02:04:33   and hopefully people wanting to go on the record,

02:04:35   but it's ultimately all the scoops in the world

02:04:39   are not going to help you in contrast

02:04:41   with someone just coming straight out

02:04:42   and telling their story.

02:04:45   - So anyway, I feel like we had to talk about it.

02:04:47   Glad we did.

02:04:48   - Oh yeah, me too.

02:04:49   - Anything else you want to mention before we wrap up?

02:04:52   - Gosh, I think we kind of ran the gamut.

02:04:55   - I know, we caught up.

02:04:56   I feel like I kind of caught up to the news,

02:04:57   although who knows, God Almighty,

02:04:58   there's probably like another Uber scandal.

02:05:01   - I know, in the next, the last 30 minutes.

02:05:03   - We'll never make it. - In addition to Grayvald.

02:05:05   - In the 24 hours it usually takes for shows

02:05:07   to get published, we'll never make it.

02:05:09   There's gonna be something, something will break.

02:05:11   - Undoubtedly, this news cycle,

02:05:13   that's what I'd like to talk about.

02:05:14   I'd like to talk about a pause button.

02:05:16   Could someone make me a HomeKit pause button

02:05:18   for the news cycle?

02:05:19   - Please, no news.

02:05:20   Everybody can read Serenity's fine work

02:05:28   at iMore.com and on Twitter, your Twitter name is,

02:05:32   I forget, what's your Twitter name?

02:05:33   - Cetern.

02:05:34   - How do you spell it, S-E-T-T-E-R-N.

02:05:37   - Yes.

02:05:38   - That's a fine follow on Twitter.

02:05:40   Anything else you wanna mention or pitch?

02:05:43   - Oh gosh, other than the, we're doing a lot of work

02:05:46   on iPad Pros, specifically people who are doing

02:05:49   real world iPad examples, so if you have,

02:05:53   if you're using your iPad for work,

02:05:54   especially if it's something outside the norm

02:05:57   that you think is pretty awesome,

02:05:59   please hit me up on Twitter or on email

02:06:01   at Serenity@imore because I'd love to hear your story.

02:06:04   We're collecting some really good ones.

02:06:06   - All right, I will definitely put a link into the series,

02:06:08   iPad Pros over at IMOR, but I think it's great.

02:06:11   I think it's really interesting to think about

02:06:13   in terms of context where and what these people are doing,

02:06:17   not just, oh, they're doing the same things they used to do.

02:06:21   I think our sponsors, Squarespace,

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02:06:46   Thank you, Serenity.