The Talk Show

128: ‘Did You Ever Take a Photograph?’ With Guest Matthew Panzarino


00:00:00   Did you watch the Yankees last night?

00:00:02   - I didn't, I didn't.

00:00:03   I was busy last night, my daughter's sick,

00:00:05   so I was taking care of her.

00:00:07   - Oh no, that's terrible.

00:00:08   - Yeah, just a little bit of a cough,

00:00:09   kind of borderline croup kind of thing.

00:00:12   So, I was thinking, I was three,

00:00:14   so that happens I guess around that age.

00:00:16   - Yeah, that's sort of like when they get adventurous.

00:00:19   - Yeah, exactly.

00:00:20   Start touching a lot of things,

00:00:22   putting a lot of things in their mouth,

00:00:23   and what's this?

00:00:25   - Well, and you know, it's like,

00:00:27   they're always putting things in their mouth,

00:00:28   but it's like at three they can find amazing new places

00:00:32   to go to put things in their mouth.

00:00:34   - Right, exactly, exactly.

00:00:36   They have, they're ambulatory and they can climb now.

00:00:40   Yeah, exactly.

00:00:42   - It's like they first start moving around

00:00:43   and you can just sort of like clean up a room

00:00:46   and have a room where everything within reach

00:00:48   is reasonably clean and then that's good.

00:00:52   And then by the time they're three, they can get anywhere.

00:00:55   - Yeah, yeah, either you go full clean room

00:00:57   where it's just bare walls to the ceiling

00:01:00   or you just kinda have to roll with the punches.

00:01:02   - Oh man.

00:01:05   So it's weird.

00:01:06   I feel like there's a weird combination.

00:01:08   August is always a weird time, every industry,

00:01:11   but in tech in particular,

00:01:13   it's always slow in some ways,

00:01:17   but I feel like this year it's interesting

00:01:19   in a couple of ways.

00:01:21   Well, and one, and I just saw it.

00:01:25   Now this is right up, I'm sure you saw the article,

00:01:28   'cause I saw it on TechCrunch,

00:01:30   is that all the drama at Twitter, more or less.

00:01:34   - Oh, right.

00:01:36   - As we record today, August 7th,

00:01:39   the news today is that Chris Sacca,

00:01:42   who, what do they call him, outspoken investor.

00:01:47   I think that's fair.

00:01:49   - Yeah, I think it is.

00:01:50   So I think it's a fair characterization.

00:01:51   I doubt he'd balk too much at that.

00:01:53   I don't know, I don't wanna put words into his mouth,

00:01:55   but he seems to have no qualms in kind of saying

00:01:58   what he believes is the right thing to do there.

00:02:00   - I would also say it would be fair to describe him

00:02:03   as influential investor Chris Sacca.

00:02:06   He's sort of, maybe like our, in tech,

00:02:14   he's sort of like the nice guy version of,

00:02:17   I can.

00:02:21   - Yeah, I was gonna say Carl Icahn, yeah.

00:02:23   - Yeah, I mean, I can, yeah, I can as sort of a bulldozer.

00:02:27   I think, I think Saka tries to talk to the right people

00:02:29   and say, look, these are the things,

00:02:31   and connect the right people that are whatever.

00:02:33   I mean, you notice that this is the first time

00:02:34   he's really kind of come out really,

00:02:36   I mean, obviously, he's said a lot about Twitter product,

00:02:39   and he's written medium posts about Twitter product

00:02:42   and all that stuff that he thinks that

00:02:43   there are certain things they need to do with their product,

00:02:45   which is fine, everybody has opinions.

00:02:47   And, you know, he's known the product for a long time.

00:02:50   But this is the first time he's come out

00:02:51   explicitly said, "You guys should hire Jack for the CEO spot." And I think he does work

00:02:58   a lot behind the scenes to kind of connect the dots and try to get the right things to

00:03:03   happen with Twitter because he really cares about it. But this is the first time he's

00:03:06   actually kind of come out and said in public on Twitter, "Hey, you guys should hire Jack."

00:03:14   And you know, it seems like there's, the whole Twitter CEO thing is such a soap opera.

00:03:22   I mean, you really could not write a more soap opera style story because like a real

00:03:29   soap opera, the characters don't go away.

00:03:32   Like they've gone through, they've gone through a bunch of CEOs and everybody who has ever

00:03:42   been the Twitter CEO remains on the board. Yeah, exactly. And they come back

00:03:48   from like, oh no, they weren't dead. They were in the basement like strapped to a

00:03:53   gurney and you know a doctor was experimenting on them and now you know

00:03:56   your cousin is back and he's in love with you or whatever. Yeah, so you've

00:04:01   always got these you know former co-founders and CEOs on the board

00:04:10   looking over your shoulder. I mean even with Dick Costello, you know that he's

00:04:16   you know he's I guess he is no longer the CEO but he's you know you go

00:04:22   right to the board. Yeah he's on the board. I mean I think that Twitter has a

00:04:27   unique history in that a lot of the people that were really invested in it

00:04:32   were not they were not brought on because they were business people

00:04:37   Because there's this two-fold way of thinking about leadership

00:04:43   in the Valley.

00:04:44   And depending on the investor, depending

00:04:46   on the stage of the company, and a lot of other things,

00:04:49   you get varying opinions about what's the right thing to do

00:04:52   as far as leadership goes.

00:04:53   But there's a huge cadre of people in the Valley that

00:04:59   follow and really closely adhere to this technical founder

00:05:03   leadership mentality.

00:05:06   The person that came up with the idea and maybe even wrote some code on the original concept,

00:05:11   or even crafted the first MVP product, is the person that should lead the company because they know it the best.

00:05:16   They know the underlying purpose that they saw behind it, and they can guide that purpose through whatever permutations they come if they're in that leadership position.

00:05:23   Whereas outside the valley, and even in the valley, there's some folks who are

00:05:35   are kind of coming around to this type of mentality, but outside the Valley, you often

00:05:39   see somebody being brought in purely because they're a good CEO. They have no idea what

00:05:44   the technical aspects of the product entail, maybe even at first. They may not even use

00:05:50   it. They may barely know that it exists tangentially until the CEO search starts happening or whatever.

00:05:56   But then they get brought in because they're a good CEO. It's like a good cleanup hitter.

00:06:01   You don't bring them in for their fielding prowess, necessarily,

00:06:05   but you're going to bring them in to, to bat at the end of the order or,

00:06:09   or in the middle of the order to, to bring them,

00:06:11   bring them back to home base. And that's their skill.

00:06:13   They don't have the other skills.

00:06:15   Eric Schmidt might be a canonical example of that in terms of, you know,

00:06:21   why did, why did Google bring him in, you know, for when they did,

00:06:25   you know, the, the, that what was Eric Schmidt's talent that, you know,

00:06:29   I think bottom line that he was seen as being a good CEO

00:06:34   and that that's what Google at the time needed.

00:06:37   And it's hard to, if you wanna take that stance,

00:06:42   it's hard to argue against that.

00:06:44   Whatever you think of Eric Schmidt and Google,

00:06:47   they certainly were very successful under him

00:06:50   and it seems to have worked well for them.

00:06:52   - Yeah, I mean I think that Larry,

00:06:55   obviously taking the job back over,

00:06:56   A lot of people saw that as a sort of reclamation and resurrection of some Google missions.

00:07:03   You'll notice that a lot of the experimental programs really took on a new life and were

00:07:09   spun up after that happened.

00:07:12   I think that there is something to be said for both.

00:07:16   I think that getting your financial underpinnings in order and your business plans aligned with

00:07:21   the stuff that's going to help you grow and spend money in the long run is a huge thing.

00:07:26   With Google, there's essentially two ways to think about it.

00:07:28   You think about Google in terms of the way it makes money, which is actually quite boring.

00:07:32   Well, boring to me, but not to some, you know, some ad tech people might take offense and

00:07:35   be like, "No, they're doing all kinds of cool stuff."

00:07:37   And that's fine.

00:07:38   But it's fairly straightforward.

00:07:40   The way they make money is ads.

00:07:42   But the way they spend their money is fascinating.

00:07:44   It's endlessly fascinating to me.

00:07:46   And so that is like kind of the dual role that those two CEOs played, I think.

00:07:51   Yeah.

00:07:52   - I think the other factor there though

00:07:53   is that there was never any kind of drama or contention,

00:07:57   at least from the outside,

00:07:59   it certainly didn't seem like there was

00:08:00   between Larry and Sergey and Eric Schmidt.

00:08:04   It was a crime that they were seen as three guys

00:08:07   who led the company.

00:08:08   And the fact that they brought in a CEO

00:08:12   didn't really steer the company away

00:08:14   from what it was founded to do.

00:08:17   And that those guys were still there

00:08:20   and were obviously heavily influential

00:08:22   throughout the whole period where Eric Schmidt was the CEO,

00:08:25   and obviously even more influential now

00:08:27   that Larry is the CEO.

00:08:30   But, you know, so I think you could see Google sort of,

00:08:34   almost like both sides of the argument,

00:08:37   that they did well by bringing in a CEO,

00:08:39   but that they also did well by keeping the founders there

00:08:42   in a, you know, significant leadership positions.

00:08:46   - Mm-hmm, yeah, I agree, I agree.

00:08:48   And Twitter doesn't necessarily have that history.

00:08:52   It has this kind of weird history

00:08:54   where they bring people in.

00:08:56   There's sort of internal contentions and fights

00:09:00   about who really should be in charge,

00:09:03   regardless of who actually holds the CEO spot.

00:09:06   - Well, there's even contention at Twitter

00:09:08   over who the actual founder is.

00:09:11   Was it Jack Dorsey or Evan Williams?

00:09:15   What's his name?

00:09:18   what's his name, Bilton wrote a whole book about trying to settle that argument.

00:09:25   Right. And I think that this is a good tie-in to that whole what do you do, who do you bring

00:09:33   in to run a company thing, like the technical founder or person who knows how to run a business.

00:09:38   And I think that there's an alignment there because part of Bilton's book, and this is

00:09:45   this is a good thing that he pointed out that I think more people should understand about the valley is that there's this myth of

00:09:51   The sole creator right of the the mythical creator and that's not unique to the valley

00:09:57   I think that a lot of companies have had this history especially in America where we kind of value

00:10:02   This sort of like entrepreneurial spirit and the I found I made this thing with my hands kind of thing

00:10:07   and so you get this creator myth

00:10:10   spun up where

00:10:12   The story becomes less and less complex over time until eventually it's this guy made this thing

00:10:18   But in reality if you burrow down to the roots of the thing, it's these 12 people made this thing

00:10:24   In varying ways this person was an influencer

00:10:28   This person said no to the very thing that that would have made it great and you know, whatever right?

00:10:34   You can you can burrow down to all the little teeny decisions that were made in the origin

00:10:38   but it's very very rare to actually have

00:10:42   a sole creator myth pan out if you burrow down to the origins of most of these companies.

00:10:48   And I think Twitter is one of those things where you had people...

00:10:51   It was such a nebulous start because it was a side project of another company

00:10:56   which was itself kind of flailing and deciding what it wanted to do and all this stuff.

00:11:01   And then you had, on top of that, you have egos and you have people who are obviously incredibly talented

00:11:07   but also eloquent and have a passion for it.

00:11:12   And it wasn't just a, oh, who made it so who gets the equity?

00:11:16   It was who made it so who gets to own the creator myth?

00:11:19   I think that's almost as important as any other currency in Silicon Valley,

00:11:23   because it funds future ventures and your ability to get funding for future companies and that sort of thing.

00:11:29   So I think that Jack kind of came out the winner there for a time,

00:11:32   Although people have acknowledged, you know, as efforts more and more as time goes on and of course there are plenty of people

00:11:38   I mean people forget, you know

00:11:40   Costolo has been there ten years

00:11:42   Yeah, you know

00:11:44   This is not a guy who kind of came out of nowhere and I think that there is a big difference between I think he got

00:11:50   Short shrift a lot. I think he was kind of handed a bag of bones and asked to do things that weren't necessarily possible

00:11:57   I am not claiming insider knowledge on any of this that just you know observation and discussion with people and all this stuff

00:12:04   over time it seems like

00:12:07   You you know, nobody ever told me

00:12:09   Oh dickus solo is a jerk or dickus solo doesn't know what he's doing

00:12:12   Like I never ever heard that in my history of reporting on Twitter and it was you know

00:12:17   Oh the product is all over the place and they can't decide what to do and this and that the other thing

00:12:22   Which that there's a you know, variety of things. It could be a reason for that. But yeah, I

00:12:27   - I always come back to, I just really think that

00:12:31   there's a history, and it's natural,

00:12:35   I don't even know how it could be avoided,

00:12:36   but that with investors, when some company

00:12:41   has unbelievable success, I mean, just, you know,

00:12:46   like if you got in, you know, boom, that you've,

00:12:49   you know, the stock explodes and you make tons of money,

00:12:53   and the company starts, you know, making enormous profits

00:12:57   and it's hoorahs all around,

00:12:59   that investors see, want to look for somebody else

00:13:02   and say you should do what they did.

00:13:03   And I always, Apple's a company

00:13:06   that I am intimately familiar with,

00:13:09   and that to me was 20 years ago,

00:13:12   this whole argument of you gotta stop,

00:13:15   you gotta get out of the hardware game,

00:13:16   you're a software company, you should license your OS,

00:13:19   which was more or less you should just do

00:13:22   what Microsoft does, because Microsoft

00:13:24   was extraordinarily successful.

00:13:27   - It was a paragon of virtue at that time.

00:13:29   - Right, and it was too late at a certain point,

00:13:32   from an investor standpoint, it was too late

00:13:33   to make lots of money on Microsoft

00:13:35   'cause they'd already gotten huge,

00:13:37   so why not get into Apple and have Apple do what they did?

00:13:40   Even though that doesn't make any sense,

00:13:42   it would not make any sense for doing what these people

00:13:46   were saying wouldn't actually lead to the result

00:13:49   of Apple having become a Microsoft-style success.

00:13:55   And in fact, when they dipped their toes in it,

00:13:57   it was a disaster with the cloning and licensing

00:14:00   and stuff like that.

00:14:02   It made a bad situation worse.

00:14:04   - There's an interesting-- - 'Cause that's what

00:14:06   they wanted to do.

00:14:07   And to me, that's, anyway, where I'm going with that

00:14:09   is to me, Twitter is Apple and Facebook is Microsoft

00:14:12   in that argument today.

00:14:13   - Oh, right, yeah, yeah, yeah.

00:14:14   And I definitely think you're right there.

00:14:16   I mean, I think there's plenty of people

00:14:18   that are looking at, and both companies have made faints

00:14:22   towards duplicating and or cloning certain features

00:14:25   of each other.

00:14:26   And for the most part, those don't pan out well

00:14:28   because they don't align with the company,

00:14:31   the core of what the company is.

00:14:33   Oh, me, I'll text you this.

00:14:34   You can pull it up.

00:14:36   There's this Dilbert cartoon that,

00:14:38   excuse me, I got a little bit of a cough, I apologize,

00:14:42   but that I found tweeted into my feed

00:14:46   that it was so germane to this.

00:14:49   it's from two thousand twelve but the first first panel

00:14:52   it's the boss yet dilbert and the dog and the boss right in the dog is the

00:14:56   consultant the bosses

00:14:58   i had a management consultant to teach us something he calls backwards

00:15:01   causation

00:15:02   until the sitting there looking at him the second panel the dog is the

00:15:06   consultant always

00:15:07   says i study the most successful companies if you imitate them

00:15:10   you'll feel as you have the as if you have a strategy

00:15:13   and he's all number one sponsor golf tournament so you see you can meet

00:15:17   celebrities

00:15:18   and the boss is all profits, here we come!" And that, like, yeah, it's the funny aside, but it really is so true.

00:15:26   You get a lot of these things where people go, "This was successful, so you should imitate this,"

00:15:31   and they don't ask, you know, "Why was it successful?" or "Why was it successful in that particular area?"

00:15:38   And I think that's a big thing.

00:15:40   It's a good comic. The third panel is obviously the joke, and it is kind of funny, but it's the second

00:15:45   panel that sets up the joke that's actually sort of the insight into the bad strategy

00:15:53   of a lot of companies, right? Because it's true. It's funny because it's true. If you

00:15:58   imitate them, you'll feel as if you have a strategy.

00:16:00   Right. It's much easier than doing the hard thinking about what the soul of your company

00:16:06   is and how to expand that goal without giving up that soul. That's a much, much more difficult

00:16:13   conversation to have then

00:16:14   you know this this was really cool when we

00:16:17   truck test that out

00:16:18   eighty tested see if it works and if it works great if it doesn't will destroy

00:16:22   something some of the company

00:16:24   this that this to me is the bad hand that dick costello was dealt when he took

00:16:28   over was that he was coming into a world where

00:16:31   face book was heading towards a

00:16:34   an i_p_o_ their i_p_o_ was successful

00:16:37   uh... they

00:16:40   did it have done a tremendous job this is face book tremendous job pivoting to

00:16:45   go from being a web

00:16:46   company to mobile company

00:16:48   uh... including not just with usage including making money there i think

00:16:53   that

00:16:54   uh... and

00:16:55   you'd you probably know i'd almost certainly i just read that they now make

00:16:58   more money on mobile than they do

00:17:01   desktop

00:17:02   i believe so yes don't believe not only so if not it's a huge amount

00:17:06   and it's really around like overnight

00:17:08   - And the trend-- - Not really, but really quickly.

00:17:10   - If they haven't quite passed it yet,

00:17:12   the trend lines are clear that it either just happened

00:17:15   early, like in the last quarter, or it's going to happen.

00:17:17   The trend line is absolutely set

00:17:20   that they're going to make more money on mobile,

00:17:22   which is exactly makes sense

00:17:24   because people are using mobile more, so it makes sense.

00:17:28   So they've done great,

00:17:29   and they have this unbelievable size of users.

00:17:34   They've got, I don't know,

00:17:35   over a billion active users around the world,

00:17:37   and it's growing. - 65%, by the way.

00:17:39   65% or 66% of their total revenue from mobile

00:17:44   as of late last year. - Right, so it's passed.

00:17:46   - So far passed. - Right, and it's only,

00:17:47   and it's gonna keep going, I think.

00:17:49   I think it's gonna go up to 70, 75, 80.

00:17:52   You know, unbelievable user base, lots of profits.

00:17:57   It's not even, you know, like, oh, you know,

00:18:00   hopefully, you know, they've got all the users

00:18:01   and they've got all the revenue.

00:18:02   Eventually, they'll make a profit.

00:18:04   No, they've already got the profit.

00:18:05   It's a great business.

00:18:07   And Twitter came of age in the shadow of Facebook

00:18:10   and everybody made out with Facebook.

00:18:13   And then Twitter is sort of like Facebook

00:18:15   in a general sense.

00:18:16   It's a social network, right?

00:18:19   It's, you know.

00:18:21   - Yeah, one could argue that it's actually

00:18:22   a different thing.

00:18:23   - Oh, I think you definitely could.

00:18:25   - But yeah, it falls in that bucket.

00:18:27   - You know, it's certainly more similar than, you know.

00:18:31   You could say it's apples and oranges,

00:18:32   but it's not like comparing apples to a paintbrush.

00:18:36   You know, it's clearly, you know,

00:18:39   they're in the same section of the grocery store.

00:18:41   And, you know, and so therefore it was, well,

00:18:47   Twitter should be as successful measured in those ways,

00:18:50   you know, stock price, revenue, profits, users,

00:18:54   active users as Facebook.

00:18:55   - Right, metrics, right.

00:18:56   - And I think the fundamental truth is that Facebook,

00:19:00   the nature of Facebook is more compelling to more people,

00:19:04   just regular people, than Twitter.

00:19:06   I think Twitter is a phenomenal idea.

00:19:08   I honestly, to me, it has changed my life.

00:19:11   I honestly cannot, can't even imagine.

00:19:14   It's hard for me to remember

00:19:17   what it was like before Twitter.

00:19:18   And to me, it's always very funny to think about it

00:19:20   because Twitter and the iPhone

00:19:23   more or less came out around the same time.

00:19:25   I signed up for Twitter in late 2006

00:19:27   and really kinda dug into it throughout 2007,

00:19:31   which was the year the iPhone came out.

00:19:33   And so it's, you know, my life pre-2007, I remember it,

00:19:37   but it seems--

00:19:39   - You don't have a log of it for sure, right?

00:19:41   - It seems unimaginable though, it really does.

00:19:44   Even just how I did "Daring Fireball"

00:19:45   seems very strange to me because an enormous part

00:19:49   of writing "Daring Fireball" to me is what I do

00:19:52   on my iPhone and a lot of what I do on my iPhone is Twitter

00:19:55   in terms of just finding links and getting feedback

00:19:58   and stuff like that.

00:20:00   I think it's a tremendous product.

00:20:03   I just don't think, I think fundamentally though, it's not as compelling to the mass

00:20:08   market as Facebook.

00:20:10   And yet the demand was there from investors for it to be.

00:20:14   And they've twisted and contorted it to sort of make it as Facebook-y as they can while

00:20:21   still being true to what Twitter is.

00:20:23   And to me it's just, they've just perverted what Twitter should be.

00:20:27   >> Yeah.

00:20:28   I mean I think there's a couple ways to look at that.

00:20:31   I understand that argument and I agree with it for the most part, but I think that there

00:20:37   are ways to look at Twitter as a product that actually allows you to serve both of those

00:20:43   concepts, serve the Twitter concept, which is sort of a real-time pillar of the Internet.

00:20:48   You know, you don't delete Twitter from the Internet now.

00:20:51   If Twitter today, if like the company disappeared, just some massive fold, like it turns out

00:20:57   there was a Ponzi scheme and everybody in it is broke and there's no money anywhere

00:21:01   and whatever, right? And every share is worth one cent and everybody cashes out and whatever,

00:21:07   you know, there's the building's empty tomorrow. Something else would fill that void, right?

00:21:13   It is something we did not understand we needed out of the internet until it existed. And

00:21:18   now that we know that it exists, it's impossible to do without. So it's sort of one of those,

00:21:25   you know, the short-range cat things, right?

00:21:28   Like if you didn't ever saw Twitter in the box,

00:21:31   would you care that you didn't have Twitter?

00:21:33   Maybe, maybe not, probably not, right?

00:21:36   But now that you know it exists,

00:21:38   there's absolutely no way that the internet

00:21:41   exists without that, because it's a fundamental underpinning

00:21:45   of the way the internet works now.

00:21:47   Not necessarily that every user of the internet uses it,

00:21:50   obviously not, because if so,

00:21:52   they wouldn't have the problems that they're having.

00:21:54   but that real time feed influences the core internet users

00:21:59   that drive the experience for so many other people,

00:22:03   like news gatherers and newsmakers

00:22:05   and people that understand the way that the internet works

00:22:09   and the way that the world works in ways

00:22:11   that they need to broadcast

00:22:13   or feel that they wanna broadcast.

00:22:15   I mean, if you look at like the Black Lives Matter movement

00:22:17   and like DeRay Mckesson and like these folks

00:22:21   that are on the ground in these various cities

00:22:25   and when those body cam videos come out

00:22:29   and they get splashed all over Twitter

00:22:31   and get shared and then shared out to news sites,

00:22:33   I mean, those movements would lack a,

00:22:37   I mean, not that they wouldn't exist,

00:22:38   you know, human beings are resilient,

00:22:40   but they would definitely not have the amplification

00:22:43   that they do and Twitter is, you know,

00:22:45   that's the way Twitter works. - The nature of Twitter

00:22:46   enables that, right.

00:22:48   It is a tremendous news service.

00:22:49   It's different.

00:22:50   What Twitter does that's unique is just different and unique.

00:22:53   It just measures differently than Facebook.

00:22:57   I honestly think this is true.

00:22:59   It might end up being less profitable than Facebook.

00:23:02   But that doesn't mean ... This is what I'm getting at.

00:23:05   It doesn't mean that Twitter isn't popular and can't be profitable.

00:23:09   Just not profitable up to unreasonable expectations that have been set.

00:23:14   Yes, I think you're right in that for sure.

00:23:17   I don't think that they're ever gonna reach Facebook scale or if they do it'll be in a in a way. We don't even see yet

00:23:22   yeah, there was a

00:23:24   It's oh my god, it's I just brought it up but it's covered by a

00:23:29   Get Adobe Flash Player thing here

00:23:32   Which we can get to soon, but anyway, it was a thing from last December where Evan Williams was asked on stage about

00:23:41   Instagram having more active users than Twitter.

00:23:45   And he said, "I don't give a shit

00:23:46   "if Instagram has more users."

00:23:48   And then went on, but that obviously got the headlines.

00:23:51   - Yeah, I think there was some context missing there,

00:23:56   but overall I think the sentiment is kind of accurate.

00:23:59   That's what they need to feel.

00:24:00   - Here, I'll quote Evan Williams.

00:24:03   It's not too long.

00:24:04   Here's what he said.

00:24:05   "It's a question of breadth versus depth.

00:24:08   "Why is users the only thing we talk about?

00:24:10   The crazy thing, Facebook has done an amazing job of establishing that as the metric for

00:24:15   Wall Street.

00:24:16   No one ever talks about what is a monthly active user.

00:24:20   I believe it's the case that if you use Facebook Connect, if you use an app that you logged

00:24:24   into with Facebook Connect, you're considered a Facebook user whether or not you ever launched

00:24:28   the Facebook app or went to Facebook.com.

00:24:31   So what does that mean?

00:24:32   It's become so abstract to be meaningless.

00:24:35   Something you did cause some data in their servers to be recorded for the month.

00:24:38   So I think we're on the wrong path.

00:24:41   If you think, and I think what he means by that is we as an industry are on the wrong

00:24:44   path about measuring monthly active users is this thing.

00:24:49   Back to Evan Williams' quote, "If you think about the impact Twitter has on the world

00:24:52   versus Instagram, it's pretty significant.

00:24:55   It's at least apples to oranges.

00:24:57   Twitter is what we wanted it to be.

00:24:59   It's this real-time information network where everything in the world that happens on Twitter,

00:25:03   important stuff breaks on Twitter, and world leaders have conversations on Twitter.

00:25:07   If that's happening, I frankly don't give a shit if Instagram has more people looking

00:25:11   at pretty pictures."

00:25:14   And that to me is a very compelling argument, and I hope that that, you know, the fact that

00:25:20   Evan Williams is still on the board and, you know, obviously has some influence, that it's,

00:25:24   you know, my big fear about Twitter is that they're going to bring in somebody who is

00:25:27   going to destroy what Twitter is good for in a vain attempt to...

00:25:33   >> Emulate Facebook.

00:25:34   >> Right.

00:25:35   >> Yeah.

00:25:36   - Yeah, I mean, I think that there is a solution.

00:25:40   And I'm no, you know, I'm just a dude who writes

00:25:42   about things on the internet, right?

00:25:43   So this is easy for me to say

00:25:45   and hard for anybody else to do.

00:25:46   But I think that there is a solution.

00:25:48   That solution is to treat logged in Twitter

00:25:50   and logged out Twitter as two separate products.

00:25:52   And I think that they are starting to do that a little bit.

00:25:55   They've launched some things that are fainting at that.

00:25:59   But I also feel that they haven't had

00:26:00   a unified product strategy that they've been able

00:26:02   to stick to for longer than a couple of quarters

00:26:05   in quite some time.

00:26:06   So it's gonna take a while to see if this pans out

00:26:08   and whoever they bring in for leadership

00:26:10   is going to need to feel the same way.

00:26:12   It's like bringing in a new librarian, right?

00:26:14   And that new librarian is gonna need to feel the same way

00:26:16   about the way the catalog works.

00:26:17   Otherwise we're gonna end up with a mess again.

00:26:19   But logged in Twitter is a place for creators.

00:26:24   It's a place for people that make and do and see and speak.

00:26:30   And logged out Twitter is for consumers.

00:26:33   It's a place where people like to consume

00:26:36   and see the things that people make

00:26:38   and take in the things that people say

00:26:42   and hopefully grow smarter or grow more enlightened

00:26:44   or just be entertained or whatever.

00:26:47   It doesn't matter whether it's Drake laying down a diss track

00:26:51   against Meek Mill and tweeting it out

00:26:52   or whether it's the Iran deal and that's breaking.

00:26:56   And in either one, there's bliss in either one.

00:27:01   And that, I think, that ability to treat them

00:27:04   different things, different entities, and hold those two ideas in their hand at the

00:27:08   same time and service those two audiences is going to be key to whether or not they

00:27:12   make it a success at scale, at a large, large scale.

00:27:16   Do you, um, I'm sure that you do, but I'm guessing a lot of people who listen don't,

00:27:21   but do you follow Magic Rex?

00:27:23   Yeah. Mm-hmm. Yep.

00:27:25   So Magic Rex, for anybody who doesn't know, it's the, the account is actually...

00:27:30   Actually broke the story about it existing, by the way.

00:27:32   you go. Congratulations. All right. Then you probably do know about it. So Magic Rex, or

00:27:39   then you tell me what Magic Rex is. The user account is M-A-G-I-C capital R-E-C-S, like

00:27:45   as in Rex-like recommendations, R-E-C-S. Right. So Magic Rex was, the long story short, Magic

00:27:52   Rex was an experiment done by the experimental division at Twitter. It's kind of a handful

00:27:56   of people that do, you know, some of them have left since and I think it still exists,

00:28:00   but they do experiments with Twitter data.

00:28:03   And some of that existed to sort of surface good content.

00:28:06   They're like, "Hey, how would we tell somebody

00:28:08   "if there's somebody worth following?"

00:28:10   And you could say, "Oh, well, this person

00:28:12   "just gained a bunch of followers,"

00:28:13   but that doesn't tell the whole story.

00:28:15   They need to be important to you personally.

00:28:18   Why else would you wanna follow them?

00:28:20   So they came up with this idea

00:28:21   to create a Twitter account at first as an experiment

00:28:27   that twitter account would then

00:28:29   funnel in

00:28:31   the context of your followers

00:28:34   who you followed

00:28:35   and it says, "Oh, if

00:28:36   John, Sally and Jane in your network followed this person, you might want to follow them too."

00:28:41   So it sends you a DM

00:28:43   and it says, "Hey, John, Sally and Jane just followed this person along with, you know,

00:28:47   nine other people.

00:28:48   So you might want to follow them." And you can follow them, you can click on the

00:28:52   account. I often go in there and like, "Who,

00:28:54   you know, why did they follow this person?" And you're like, "Oh, they just got hired by this

00:28:56   publication, right? That makes sense. And then they also ran started running an experiment

00:29:02   in the same manner on tweets. So if somebody tweeted something that was favorited by a bunch

00:29:08   of people in your network, people you follow or people you interact with regularly, it would then

00:29:12   surface that tweet for you say, look, seven people, you know, favorited this tweet, probably something

00:29:18   you want to look at. So that was the genesis of the experiment. I, I find it to be extraordinarily

00:29:26   successful so i you follow i get dms from the magic rex account

00:29:31   uh... and i'm just checking right here looks like i got ten in the last month

00:29:34   so i think it certainly doesn't badger me

00:29:36   it looks like you know i i i could raise good rate in the last month i've gotten

00:29:40   one every three days

00:29:42   and they're all good

00:29:43   it's there's a

00:29:45   bunch of them

00:29:46   this month have been about favor did tweets

00:29:49   and and most of them you know it sometimes the ones that i've actually

00:29:52   seen uh...

00:29:54   or it's about a thing that I know about, but most of them weren't.

00:29:58   And they were all worth looking at, like remarkably useful for some kind of AI bot in terms of

00:30:06   that.

00:30:07   And like you said, there's a bunch that are like somebody, some new account is just followed

00:30:10   by somebody.

00:30:13   And it's also remarkable to me how quickly some of them are.

00:30:16   Right.

00:30:17   I actually warn my writers if we hire somebody not to follow them immediately so that I can

00:30:23   announce that writer because if all of my writers follow them all journalism is

00:30:28   that's it's a uniquely navel-gazing and insular industry especially on Twitter

00:30:33   so all journalists follow each other and we all talk to each other and that

00:30:36   sometimes distorts what we think is important but that's a whole nother

00:30:40   story but if they all follow this writer all at once bam then they it pops a

00:30:47   magic wreck on all my competitors and they'll know that I hired them before

00:30:50   for I'm ready to announce.

00:30:52   So I actually tell them not to follow them.

00:30:54   - The magic, here's one for the @EdgeTV account.

00:30:58   Now that's a new like sort of,

00:31:00   I actually haven't looked at it yet,

00:31:01   but it's from the Onion video group.

00:31:04   I think it's like--

00:31:05   - It's hilarious actually.

00:31:06   - Fake parody vice sort of.

00:31:10   - Yeah, it's a parody vice, yeah.

00:31:12   - Yeah, it's like hipster type independent journalists

00:31:16   on around the world dangerous situations,

00:31:21   but it's a parody.

00:31:22   But I got, a couple days ago,

00:31:24   I got a @edgeTV was just followed by Josh Centers

00:31:28   11 seconds ago, and @Matt and Jessica Mizner.

00:31:33   But 11 seconds after Josh Centers followed them,

00:31:37   the Magic Rex account sent me a DM and said,

00:31:40   "Hey, this, you know, Josh--"

00:31:42   - You should definitely pay attention to this account.

00:31:44   - Right, this guy from, you know,

00:31:45   the guy who's the editor at tidbits now and Matt Honan and Jessica Bizner so

00:31:51   three media people who I follow all followed it you know you might want to

00:31:54   know and I did I followed it it was it was worth it the thing that I'm getting

00:31:58   at though is that the the data that makes magic Rex work the the the

00:32:03   thinking and that whatever information they have if they could show me ads at

00:32:08   about the same pace show me ten of them a month but have them be as interesting

00:32:13   to me as these are, that's gold.

00:32:17   That is absolute positive gold.

00:32:19   Like they're obviously finding things

00:32:21   that I think are interesting.

00:32:23   And I think that their potential is clearly there

00:32:26   that they could sell me things

00:32:28   that I would be interested in.

00:32:30   - Well, you know the ads, the thing about Twitter ads

00:32:33   is that they're actually really good already.

00:32:36   Like a lot of people don't know this

00:32:37   because the company itself is maligned on the whole

00:32:41   because of its lack of user growth.

00:32:42   Although, you know, as we already, you already touched on that those metrics can be argued against, right?

00:32:48   Strongly, you know, the daily active users and monthly ad users and everything.

00:32:53   But they're maligned because those metrics have been established and they are what they are.

00:32:56   But their ads and monetization departments actually outperform the company significantly.

00:33:04   And I mean, you use outperform very loosely there, but they perform in an outsized manner considering how many users they have.

00:33:11   And so if they actually were able to solve the user growth problem or find a different way to count those users, people that viewed embedded tweets, for instance, included in monthly active users, that sort of thing.

00:33:21   If they were able to fix that for the market, I think it would actually go insane because the Twitter ads department, which is the revenue department, which is led by Adam Bain, who is, by the way, one of the front runners for CEO, is actually really, really well performing.

00:33:37   and that the ads there are served up with intelligence.

00:33:42   However, I agree with you that they could be much,

00:33:45   much smarter.

00:33:46   If I got an ad that I know was personalized like Magic Rex,

00:33:50   I feel it would be even more effective.

00:33:53   But I'm no smarty in the ads department.

00:33:55   I agree with you though, that that could be a good concept.

00:33:58   - The potential is clearly there.

00:33:59   - Yeah, I mean, you know, Magic Rex actually,

00:34:01   just real briefly, Magic Rex was actually integrated

00:34:04   into the main Twitter product.

00:34:06   Like it was absorbed into the main product as of late 2013, I think sometime.

00:34:10   Um, and so the, if you don't have magic Rex, if you've never heard of the account,

00:34:15   but you've gotten a notification that says, Hey, you should, you know,

00:34:18   this person was just followed or, you know, you should look at this tweet.

00:34:21   That's built off of that magic Rex experiment. They sort of folded it in.

00:34:25   But I of course still follow the account and I get the DM directly.

00:34:29   I actually like it that way better than a notification.

00:34:32   Tip of the tip of the day. For those of you who haven't tried it,

00:34:35   especially I would, I think, 'cause like,

00:34:38   I'm guessing a lot of people who listen to the show

00:34:39   are like me and don't really even know

00:34:42   what the main Twitter experience is like

00:34:44   because we all use Tweetbot.

00:34:46   - Right. - Or Twitturific.

00:34:48   Nothing like that would surface for me

00:34:52   if I weren't following the Magic Rex account.

00:34:55   - Right, exactly.

00:34:56   Platform agnostic, which is when Twitter's at its best,

00:34:59   but that's another discussion too.

00:35:02   - Yeah.

00:35:02   Anyway, speaking of ads, let's thank the first sponsor

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00:37:31   What else? Oh, so here's the other thing I want to talk about, Twitter, before we move

00:37:34   on from Twitter. So the problem that I did, the bigger problem I see with Twitter, or

00:37:38   the immediate problem I see with Twitter, is that their stock is in free fall. Now,

00:37:42   maybe free fall is a little dramatic, but it's significantly down. It's down below,

00:37:49   I think it still is. Actually, I haven't checked since the last time I looked.

00:37:53   Oh, it is.

00:37:54   It's down below the IPO level, which is dangerous. Dangerous meaning that obviously the lower

00:38:02   the stock drops, the more likely it is that somebody is going to buy them.

00:38:09   It opened at 41 and it's currently at 27.

00:38:12   Right. Sorry, I think it's a market cap of around 19 billion, something like that.

00:38:17   8.9 according to Google. Just for what I'm looking at.

00:38:20   So then add a little premium because you've got to add a premium. Somebody could probably

00:38:25   acquire Twitter, call it a hostile takeover for around 20 billion. And if the trend continues,

00:38:34   that number gets lower and lower. And eventually it's going to reach a point where that's going

00:38:39   to happen. It's inevitable if the stock keeps dropping that somebody is going to buy them.

00:38:47   I asked on Twitter the other day who and the companies that popped to mind for me immediately were Facebook Google Microsoft

00:38:53   Somebody else had a good one that I didn't think of Apple obviously could because they have the money

00:39:01   I don't think Apple would so I would drop Apple from the discussion immediately

00:39:05   I don't think Apple would see any interest in owning Twitter. No, I don't think so. Just doesn't it just doesn't make sense

00:39:12   Right other than not about it before and yeah, it's never made real sense to me

00:39:16   So one thought is that maybe this would be a good thing because if if somebody bought

00:39:24   Twitter and left them alone and let them be Twitter then all of these pressures that are unreasonable are gone

00:39:32   Mm-hmm on the other hand a lot of times companies buy smaller companies and wreck them

00:39:40   So who do you-- - More often than not,

00:39:43   they do, let's be honest.

00:39:44   It is when it doesn't happen, like with Vine, for instance,

00:39:47   like Twitter bought Vine,

00:39:48   and Vine's actually doing really well,

00:39:49   and I think is this super, super cool thing

00:39:51   that's much different than when they bought it,

00:39:53   but still very neat.

00:39:54   They didn't wreck that.

00:39:55   But when that happens, we're all surprised and delighted.

00:39:59   I think the average company that gets acquired

00:40:02   is gonna get mashed up in some way to fit the revenue

00:40:06   and outlook that the parent company kind of wants from it.

00:40:10   Yeah, and Vine is interesting. I don't really use Vine. I should say I don't use

00:40:14   Vine. I obviously know what it is, but it was news to me that there are...

00:40:21   maybe there's not as many, but in the way that there are professional YouTubers,

00:40:26   there are professional Vine people. You know, people who are doing, you know,

00:40:31   whose Vine accounts do have enough followers and who can charge enough for

00:40:37   sponsored posts, you know, it's, I know it sounds like lingo, but it's, you know,

00:40:44   it's not a bad term, native content. In other words, you have a lot of vine

00:40:48   followers and a sponsor pays you to do a six-second vine for the, you know,

00:40:55   featuring their product and, you know, and if you're good, you know, and you're,

00:40:59   you're, you have all these followers because your vines are funny, you make a

00:41:02   funny vine featuring a coca-cola and everybody's happy right you're you're

00:41:08   you're you know it's it's that win-win-win virtuous cycle of you know I

00:41:13   know native content again it sounds like some kind of weird business development

00:41:16   term but when it works it's really great because the video is just as funny as

00:41:21   your other stuff you you can acknowledge it you put it in a you know a hashtag or

00:41:25   in the comment that this was sponsored so there's no you know you're not trying

00:41:28   to hide it but your followers are happy because it's another funny video and

00:41:32   and the sponsor's happy because, you know,

00:41:36   the million people who follow you,

00:41:37   or 500,000 people or whatever,

00:41:40   had their product in front of them.

00:41:41   - Right, right, absolutely.

00:41:43   And I think that's the way that most Viners

00:41:46   are making any money if they are currently.

00:41:48   Twitter actually bought a company called Niche,

00:41:51   which it uses to sort of pair up Viners with brands

00:41:54   for advertisement that it basically,

00:41:56   they created on Vine, posted on Vine,

00:41:58   and then it gets used in an ad on Twitter.

00:42:01   Vine has very little to do with that.

00:42:02   They actually are not involved in monetizing any Viner stuff

00:42:06   at all.

00:42:06   They basically make the tools, and then the Viners

00:42:09   do the rest.

00:42:10   At least that's the way it currently works.

00:42:12   But Twitter is definitely using some of that to their advantage.

00:42:15   They're saying, hey, Coke, we've got this ad, we've got this ad,

00:42:19   and we've got a Vine.

00:42:21   Like, you can make a Vine and tweet that out

00:42:23   and promote that.

00:42:24   And then people will watch it there.

00:42:26   They'll watch it on Vine, and you'll

00:42:27   get the natural uplift of those millions of followers

00:42:30   that particular Viner. And some of these Viners are bona fide celebrities. I mean, talking

00:42:37   screaming teenage girls, thousands in a conference waiting to see them, celebrities. These are

00:42:43   not by any means like flash in the pan, weird little pigeonhole celebrities. These are genuine

00:42:49   as what we would think of a movie star in like the, you know, the Hedy Lamarr, you know,

00:42:55   star fashion, this is the modern equivalent. You know, Brad Pitt is not Brad Pitt to 12

00:43:01   to 15 year olds. You know, these these Viners are that's their Brad Pitt. That's their,

00:43:06   their their idol that they in the great news is they're way more accessible than Brad Pitt

00:43:11   ever was. So they can generate much more buzz and theoretically earn a living at it and

00:43:17   keep keep going down that path towards whatever their final goal is of celebrity.

00:43:22   I have a link. I will put it in the show notes.

00:43:25   I've actually meant to post this to Daring Fireball,

00:43:29   but I didn't finish the article,

00:43:31   and this is a good reminder to me to finish it

00:43:34   after we do this, but it's fascinating.

00:43:35   It's a July 31, so it's just like a week old article

00:43:40   from Vanity Fair by Richard Lawson,

00:43:46   and he went to VidCon, V-I-D-C-O-N in Anaheim.

00:43:51   which is like where all of these YouTubes and Vine celebrities, 200 of them,

00:43:59   or 200 of them are considered millionaires, that they're making over a million dollars a year, I guess,

00:44:05   is what their definition of millionaire is. But anyway, a lot of money.

00:44:07   Serious celebrity, and this is where their fans got to meet them.

00:44:12   And it's the picture is just, you know, it looks like the modern-day equivalent of, you know,

00:44:18   when the Beatles came to America in the 60s.

00:44:21   No, I mean it's-- - No, no, yeah, I agree.

00:44:24   - It's not just thousands of teenagers,

00:44:27   it's thousands of teenagers in ecstasy,

00:44:30   that they are screaming. - Right, that's a good way

00:44:31   to put it, ecstasy, yeah.

00:44:33   - It is so funny, it is the modern world,

00:44:37   and of course they all have iPhones up in the air.

00:44:41   - Every single one, every single one.

00:44:43   It's rare to find a Vine creator actually

00:44:45   that doesn't use an iPhone, 'cause the camera quality.

00:44:48   No, I'll bet.

00:44:49   Makes total sense, yeah.

00:44:51   But the fact that this is where celebrities are today, and the advertisers are smart,

00:44:58   they're not behind.

00:44:59   People like me, who's rocketing towards old age, are old, but the marketers are smart

00:45:05   and more or less.

00:45:06   So that's why a company like Coke, and you think, "Wow, wow, that's pretty interesting

00:45:10   that an established..."

00:45:13   Coke is arguably the establishment of the marketing and advertising world, that they're

00:45:17   they're already doing this.

00:45:19   Well, of course they are, because they know

00:45:21   that if you wanna reach teenagers,

00:45:24   and of course Coca-Cola wants to reach teenagers.

00:45:27   If they don't, they're screwed.

00:45:30   Well, you don't do that on TV.

00:45:32   And that TV as the main place for an advertiser like Coke

00:45:38   to reach teenagers spans generations, plural.

00:45:43   I mean, by the time you and I were born,

00:45:46   that was already the case.

00:45:47   It was already the case.

00:45:50   Don Draper dreamed up the,

00:45:51   I'd like to sing the world a Coke before I was born.

00:45:56   That's before I was born,

00:45:57   where TV was the primary thing for that.

00:46:00   So it's very, very easy when something like TV

00:46:03   has been established as the medium to reach teenagers

00:46:07   for entire lifetimes of people in the industry right now.

00:46:12   It's very easy to let that sort of settle in like cement,

00:46:16   but it's not.

00:46:17   I mean, like my son, my 11-year-old son,

00:46:19   he doesn't, he hardly watches any broadcast TV at all.

00:46:23   And on his own, he watches none.

00:46:25   It's only like when we're as a family

00:46:27   and we decide to watch something that he is exposed to.

00:46:30   And I honestly, I don't think he understands

00:46:33   the concept of a channel.

00:46:35   I really don't, because it's,

00:46:36   even when we do watch broadcast TV,

00:46:38   it's all through the TiVo.

00:46:40   Like, I've talked to him about it.

00:46:41   I just, I don't think he really understands the idea

00:46:44   of when you get cable TV, you have, you know,

00:46:47   here's your 80 channels to choose from.

00:46:50   And, you know.

00:46:51   - And you have to watch what you're watching

00:46:53   when they put it on.

00:46:54   I think that's the big thing,

00:46:56   like the lack of on demand, that's the concept.

00:46:58   I mean, my daughter's gonna have no concept of that at all.

00:47:01   'Cause even when we let her watch stuff on her iPad,

00:47:04   like usually when we're sitting with her,

00:47:06   if she wants to watch something, we'll let her watch a movie.

00:47:09   And if she's watching a movie, that movie,

00:47:13   I found this very interesting because I'm a movie freak,

00:47:15   but that movie is the temporal aspects of it

00:47:18   are permeable to her.

00:47:20   In other words, she just watches the bits

00:47:22   that she wants to watch.

00:47:23   Sometimes she'll watch it all the way through.

00:47:25   If we put it on the TV, in other words,

00:47:26   if you use like the Apple TV to put it on the TV,

00:47:29   she'll watch it beginning to end.

00:47:30   And she loves movies, which I'm very happy about.

00:47:32   She's been asking me to watch Batman,

00:47:34   which I'm patting myself on the back about.

00:47:37   The Keaton Batman, not some cartoon.

00:47:39   Anyhow, and she's three, I probably shouldn't,

00:47:41   but let's just leave that parenting discussion

00:47:43   to another day.

00:47:44   (laughing)

00:47:45   But the, that linearity of the movie,

00:47:50   she just jumps back and forth, right?

00:47:52   She'll watch the bits that she wants to watch.

00:47:54   If there's something scary, she'll skip it.

00:47:56   If there's something that, you know,

00:47:57   funny bit that she wants to watch again,

00:47:59   she just drags her finger across the slider

00:48:01   and she comes back.

00:48:02   So it's not only the lack of channels,

00:48:04   the on-demand nature, but also the linearity of it,

00:48:08   you know, where we were used to watching something

00:48:11   that lasted an hour and we were happy about it on VHS.

00:48:14   So then we rewind it and watch it again or whatever.

00:48:17   But that is gone, gone, gone.

00:48:18   And Vine is a part of that because it's six seconds.

00:48:22   And you build your own TV channel

00:48:24   by following the people that you want

00:48:25   and by telling it what you like

00:48:28   and letting it build a channel for you, things like that.

00:48:30   And then that's your TV.

00:48:32   You watch Vine for 10 minutes, right?

00:48:34   And you get, you watch somebody's creations,

00:48:37   watch a bunch of these creations tied together.

00:48:40   and that's a quote unquote program

00:48:42   that's been built for you out of your tastes.

00:48:45   And so when it comes time to tell them,

00:48:47   oh no no, you're supposed to let somebody else determine

00:48:50   what you were supposed to watch and supposed to like,

00:48:52   and you're supposed to let them do that for hours on end,

00:48:54   I just think that's gonna be

00:48:55   an incredibly tough concept for them.

00:48:57   - Yeah, so tons of money, enormous celebrity,

00:49:01   and it's all happening on YouTube and Vine.

00:49:05   And I thought it was very, very interesting.

00:49:07   I mean, clearly, I don't think Vine is as big as YouTube,

00:49:10   you know, in any sense, even in like the literal sense

00:49:13   of how long the videos can be.

00:49:15   But it's, the way that Vine featured so prominently

00:49:20   in this story of these VidCon celebrities

00:49:23   and the fans who follow them,

00:49:25   really opened my eyes to the fact that Twitter

00:49:27   has a real gem by owning them,

00:49:29   whether they've figured out a way to make money

00:49:31   from Vine or not.

00:49:32   it just re-emphasizes my circling back to these,

00:49:37   hey, if their stock keeps circling down,

00:49:39   somebody is gonna buy them because somebody is gonna see

00:49:42   that this is a tremendous thing to own.

00:49:44   - Right, and will they then,

00:49:48   will they then keep the reasons why it is tremendous

00:49:52   and sort of improve it or will they screw it up?

00:49:55   - Right, I mean, and look at Facebook and Instagram.

00:49:57   There's one where, I love Instagram, really do.

00:50:01   Instagram is one of the few social things that I use.

00:50:03   Really like it.

00:50:05   And when Facebook bought them, my heart sunk

00:50:07   'cause I thought this is,

00:50:08   'cause I don't even use Facebook.

00:50:10   I don't use Facebook, I really don't see the appeal of it.

00:50:13   I don't like, you know, I don't like lots of things

00:50:15   about it, they're gonna wreck it.

00:50:17   And if I didn't know that Facebook bought Instagram,

00:50:20   as of today, years down the road,

00:50:24   I would have no idea.

00:50:26   They don't force any kind of Facebook sign-in.

00:50:30   It's every way that the app and the platform have evolved

00:50:35   since then have been all to me just purely Instagram-y,

00:50:40   to make up an adjective.

00:50:43   It all feels true to what it wanted to be.

00:50:45   - Right, I'm a big fan of Instagram too,

00:50:48   and I think a lot of it comes from the fact

00:50:49   that Mark Zuckerberg did leave Kevin's system in charge,

00:50:54   and he gave him sort of the ability to execute

00:50:59   on the plans that he had already had with minimal fuss.

00:51:02   And I think that Kevin's actually a pretty good thinker,

00:51:04   in terms of the stuff he cares.

00:51:07   It's not a situation where he's trying to maximize

00:51:10   his ROI from the users at every turn.

00:51:14   Instead it's what's right.

00:51:16   And there are people that are able to do that,

00:51:18   but there's very few people who are able to do that

00:51:21   in the face of billions of dollars worth of

00:51:24   money and revenue and everything else, right?

00:51:27   So he's part of Facebook now,

00:51:28   but still has managed to carve out a very unique spot

00:51:32   for Instagram and keep it good, which is a great thing.

00:51:36   - Why the hell do you think

00:51:38   they don't have a native iPad app?

00:51:39   - Focus, I mean, I think that it's about focus.

00:51:43   I think that they, I mean, obviously they have

00:51:45   all the engineering resources they could ever want, right?

00:51:48   So they could hire 50 engineers today

00:51:50   to build a great native iPad app

00:51:52   and it would display our Instagram photos and everything.

00:51:54   So it's not that they don't have the resources.

00:51:57   I think it's a matter of focus in terms of the Instagram works for a variety of reasons,

00:52:03   but one of the major reasons it works is actually because of the way it's physically structured.

00:52:09   The way the feed works, you scroll one picture at a time, you look at one thing at a time,

00:52:13   it scrolls by.

00:52:14   And I mean, I've used, as I'm sure you have, I've used like a half dozen different iPad

00:52:19   apps to browse Instagram, because sometimes I'm like, you know, I'm on my iPad, I just

00:52:22   want to look at what's new on Instagram.

00:52:24   And that's fine, but it does not feel anywhere near

00:52:27   as compelling.

00:52:29   You're sort of presented with a bunch of pictures

00:52:31   that feel less valuable all in a grid, right?

00:52:34   Whereas when you're scrolling down your Instagram feed,

00:52:36   each one feels like it has merit and value.

00:52:39   And sure, you may scroll by it quickly

00:52:42   'cause you're not interested,

00:52:43   but the ones you are interested,

00:52:44   they take up your whole screen,

00:52:46   they feel very front and center.

00:52:48   So will they do it?

00:52:49   Probably, but I can understand the reluctance.

00:52:52   You know, I the way I would imagine doing it and I know that in general for most apps

00:52:58   Take your iPhone design and just blow it up to fit the iPad screen is not a good design for an iPad app

00:53:07   I think Instagram is a rare case where it might be, you know and and make it so that

00:53:13   You know

00:53:14   I maybe even just like the phone make it so that it's it doesn't rotate make it so that you have to hold the iPad

00:53:21   Vertically and you just scroll down and they fit and that way it just makes the photos bigger. That's right

00:53:26   I wonder and I have no idea but I won on the other hand. They just maybe the high-res photos, right?

00:53:32   I wonder

00:53:33   It's been such crappy res for so long has stopped them and now they moved up in preparation

00:53:38   I've thought that too maybe yeah, maybe it's just because you know that the resolution wasn't yet big enough

00:53:44   They have to you know, they had and they did that recently. They've increased the size. What is the new size? Is it like a

00:53:50   Good question. I think it's like 10 48 by 24 88 or something like that

00:53:53   Yeah, which is pretty big pretty big at least compared to where they were and it's certainly big enough to make a fine JPEG on

00:53:59   That would actually be pixel for pixel I think on on the iPad. Yeah

00:54:05   Which may be a coincidence or maybe not a coincidence, right?

00:54:09   Right. My only other thought is maybe they've tried it and that it just doesn't feel right and I'm

00:54:15   Imagining that it would feel just great but that it doesn't so maybe I don't know but at this point

00:54:20   I would have I mean if they haven't tried it I would be incredibly shocked

00:54:23   So whether it feels right or not, I don't know they've obviously tried it. So I don't know why we haven't seen it. Yeah

00:54:29   Sorry, but yeah as far as going, you know companies, you know staying whole inside other companies

00:54:36   I think that's a good example, but as to what companies culture

00:54:39   Works for that, you know, it's very few

00:54:43   I mean you could feasibly see Facebook buying them and leaving them alone, right?

00:54:48   Like that they have proven obviously that they have the ability to do that

00:54:52   And and not take it as like a matter of pride that they have to muck with it

00:54:57   Because I think that sometimes it just comes down to that you think that Silicon Valley super rational and all this stuff

00:55:02   But you know ego plays part people are human

00:55:04   So you get this egos in there who are like, oh no

00:55:07   I got put my stamp on this thing and and and they muck it up. So you you could conceivably see

00:55:13   Maybe Facebook as a company has already proven that Mark or whoever, whatever PM is in charge

00:55:19   of those products, doesn't have that eco-driven approach.

00:55:24   And you can say, "Hey, maybe they could buy it and leave it alone."

00:55:27   And they certainly have the money.

00:55:28   It's just a matter of whether or not it fits with their overall strategy.

00:55:33   But given that they've got...

00:55:36   Before they bought WhatsApp, I would have probably had a far less inclination to say

00:55:40   that they'd buy it.

00:55:41   But now that they've bought WhatsApp, it's definitely actually more of a possibility

00:55:45   to me.

00:55:46   I, yeah, to me the top, it's, if I had to bet, it would be a bidding war between Facebook

00:55:53   and Google.

00:55:54   And Facebook to me, it almost seems a little more likely.

00:55:58   'Cause maybe Google's a little gun-shy now about social?

00:56:01   I don't know.

00:56:04   I don't know, maybe?

00:56:05   I mean, when Vic and Gondotra left, they lost all direction on Google+.

00:56:09   And I think Vic, I don't know why Vic left and I'm not going to make assumptions that

00:56:15   I don't know Jack about, but I do know that they have been planning to do the stuff that

00:56:21   they did with Google+ for like a year.

00:56:23   You know, the spinning out of photos and removing it from a lot of their primary products and

00:56:27   stuff like that.

00:56:28   We reported on that a year ago and people obviously got really mad at us and told us

00:56:32   we were lying.

00:56:33   I mean the Google+ freaks came out in droves.

00:56:36   But it was totally 100% accurate what we reported that they were planning on doing.

00:56:40   And it was the right move because it felt intrusive, it wasn't working, it wasn't providing

00:56:45   them any social uplift on the usage of their products.

00:56:48   And it actually did do what it needed to do, which is create a single sign-on service that

00:56:54   allowed them to get more users using Google products, especially search, while signed

00:57:00   in.

00:57:01   Because not only can they provide them a better experience through Google Now, which is freaking

00:57:05   But they can also, of course, serve them more accurate ads and gather more data on them.

00:57:10   And whether you feel great about that or not is up to you.

00:57:13   But that was the thought process and that worked.

00:57:17   As far as the social stuff, that was like Vic's brainchild.

00:57:21   So I think when he left, and whether it was causation, correlation, I don't know.

00:57:26   What caused what? But when he left that stopped.

00:57:31   That was done as of that moment.

00:57:34   think that it was necessary that they're turned off by it because it sure it cost

00:57:38   them a bunch of money but they have a bunch of money and it's it's worth it

00:57:42   I think it was worth it I mean if there's no way to calculate it but if

00:57:46   I'm sure somebody Google has done the math and said well we got you know 800

00:57:51   million more signed in users or whatever over the course of a year or two years

00:57:54   and that's totally worth it it way offsets the money that we spent I don't

00:57:59   know somebody of theirs probably done some math but aside from all the math

00:58:03   aspect, I think that they didn't see that as like their bid to combat Facebook.

00:58:10   And that's where you get in these arguments about people like, "No, they're

00:58:14   trying to beat Facebook." And I'd never ever thought it was about that. I don't

00:58:16   think anybody who was really, really smart thought it was about them beating

00:58:20   Facebook or whatever the case. It sort of was about other people owning the social

00:58:25   channel and all the data involved, right? And so they didn't want to be left out

00:58:29   out of the cold on that.

00:58:31   But I think that if you look at it that way,

00:58:33   then you could say, "Oh, well, they could try again

00:58:35   "with a different thing," like Twitter maybe, right?

00:58:38   And maybe they get all the data that they need from Twitter

00:58:42   without having to actually tell anybody,

00:58:45   "Oh, you gotta log into Google," right?

00:58:47   And I think that if you go back to Twitter

00:58:49   being a real-time component of the web,

00:58:53   then it becomes much more clear why they might want it

00:58:56   versus, oh, it's their new social initiative.

00:58:59   Instead, it's, oh, it's a pillar of the internet

00:59:02   and Google's all, I mean, search is another pillar.

00:59:05   So if search is one pillar and real time is another pillar,

00:59:09   then they've got, I mean, two out of whatever,

00:59:11   however many, I don't know,

00:59:13   I'm not gonna count them offhand now,

00:59:14   but there are several things that sort of have to exist

00:59:17   for the web to exist.

00:59:18   And obviously searching and indexing is one of them

00:59:20   and Google's got that.

00:59:22   And if real time is another one

00:59:23   and they see this as an opportunity to grab that,

00:59:25   That's why I think they buy it.

00:59:27   Not for social necessarily.

00:59:28   - I agreed.

00:59:32   And I think it makes total sense, for example,

00:59:35   and I don't think it was rushed.

00:59:36   I think it's so polished and it makes so much sense,

00:59:39   but just the way that they've spun Google Photos

00:59:41   into a standalone product, it just makes pure sense.

00:59:45   And it is good for people who are in the Google ecosystem.

00:59:50   Here, you sign up for this thing,

00:59:52   and you install this app,

00:59:55   or maybe if you're on an Android phone,

00:59:57   the app is already there,

00:59:58   and you sign in with your Google account,

01:00:01   and now all of your photos are in this one thing.

01:00:05   Here's where they all are, and they're on all your devices,

01:00:08   and we're gonna do these compelling AI recognition things

01:00:12   on the content of the photos.

01:00:15   And then that's more or less the end of the story, right?

01:00:19   And then you can search for them,

01:00:20   and you can say, they've got these cool features

01:00:23   where you can search for things like winter

01:00:26   and it'll find pictures or snow or something.

01:00:29   Sounds almost too good to be true

01:00:32   and it seems a lot of people,

01:00:34   it seems to work really well in reality.

01:00:36   And that's the end of the story.

01:00:39   Well, that makes sense to awful regular people.

01:00:43   That just-- - Right.

01:00:45   - It's a compelling-- - Value proposition is clear.

01:00:47   - And it just was never the case

01:00:50   when photos were wrapped up in Google+.

01:00:53   It always seemed like it was a little bit like Facebook

01:00:56   and a little bit like a photo library

01:00:58   and a little bit, you know,

01:00:59   and a little bit of this and a little bit of that

01:01:02   and trying to be more than one thing,

01:01:04   as opposed to here, Google Photos, all of your photos,

01:01:07   it's just like Gmail, like what Gmail is to your email,

01:01:10   here's a thing that's like that to your photo library.

01:01:13   There it is.

01:01:14   Anyway, speaking of photos,

01:01:17   let me take a break here and thank our second sponsor

01:01:20   and it is our good friends at Fracture.

01:01:23   So we've been talking about digital photos.

01:01:27   Fracture is all about taking your photos

01:01:29   and making them analog, right?

01:01:31   You take your photos and memories,

01:01:33   they're trapped somewhere way down in your Instagram feed

01:01:36   or they're in your iCloud photo library

01:01:38   or Google Photos or whatever.

01:01:39   And all you ever do is see them on your phone

01:01:42   or on your tablet or something like that.

01:01:44   You see them on these screens.

01:01:45   Boy, it's really nice to have your photos

01:01:49   in the real world, hanging on your wall.

01:01:51   Put 'em up, you know, hang 'em on a wall,

01:01:53   going up the steps, put 'em on the shelf in your office,

01:01:56   put 'em on your desk, somewhere where they're tangible

01:01:59   and analog with the photos that mean the most to you.

01:02:02   What Fracture does, and if you listen to the show regularly,

01:02:08   you've heard me talk about it before,

01:02:09   they take your photos and they print them directly on glass.

01:02:14   It's not a piece of paper stuck to glass.

01:02:15   I don't know, they've got some kind of magic process

01:02:18   where they take glass and that's what the actual image

01:02:21   is printed on.

01:02:22   It is a very, very compelling physical artifact.

01:02:26   It is really, really great.

01:02:27   I don't know what to say 'cause they keep sponsoring the show

01:02:33   and here's the thing, they've written to me,

01:02:34   they keep sponsoring the show, people keep going there,

01:02:37   following my advice, doing this and buying Fractures

01:02:40   and then they keep buying more.

01:02:41   It's like you might think how come every single week

01:02:44   I listen to this show, Fracture is sponsoring the show.

01:02:47   I worry that it gets repetitive, but here's the thing.

01:02:50   People keep buying these photos,

01:02:51   and I can't say enough good things.

01:02:53   I mean it sincerely.

01:02:56   Even if they said, "You know what?

01:02:57   "We love you.

01:02:57   "You've brought us so many great customers,

01:02:59   "but we're not gonna sponsor the show for a while."

01:03:02   I would still recommend Fracture to anybody

01:03:04   who wants to get photos printed.

01:03:06   You wanna get your photos printed.

01:03:08   It's just great.

01:03:09   It is so fantastic.

01:03:10   Go there, check 'em out.

01:03:11   They have sizes that range from little,

01:03:15   I don't know, like a three by three or four by four,

01:03:17   all the way up to massive, like 23 by 27 inch,

01:03:21   really, really big, big pieces of glass.

01:03:23   Go to, here's where you go,

01:03:26   their website is fractureme.com

01:03:31   and the code is daringfireball.

01:03:35   And that's good for 15% off your first order.

01:03:39   And their prices are already great,

01:03:41   so you're saving money on what's already a great deal.

01:03:44   go to fractureme.com and remember the code during Fireball. And if you haven't yet, go print out a

01:03:49   couple of your photos from your vacation or whatever you've done this summer. My thanks to

01:03:54   them. Do you ever take a photograph? You have taken one or two. I used to be a professional

01:04:04   photographer in my previous life. What do you think, I knew that was a loaded question, what

01:04:11   - What are your opinions?

01:04:13   Well, here's where I'm going with it.

01:04:14   I'm gonna parlay from the Fracture thing

01:04:17   to talking about the Photos app for Mac,

01:04:21   which I'm sort of formulating my opinion on.

01:04:26   I'm a very slow thinker in general.

01:04:28   I don't know if you've ever noticed that, but--

01:04:30   - You're deliberate.

01:04:31   Let's say you're deliberate.

01:04:33   - I, for years, used Lightroom,

01:04:39   And I actually still have, for all of those years,

01:04:43   my photo library from those years is all in Lightroom.

01:04:50   But to kind of force myself to give photos a really good try,

01:04:59   I don't have Lightroom installed on my Retina iMac yet.

01:05:04   I'm actually about to-- at some point

01:05:06   this summer, I'm going to break down and go back

01:05:08   to Lightroom, at least just to have my library there.

01:05:11   And a Twitter conversation I had with

01:05:15   Dr. Wave from Pixar.

01:05:22   - Yeah.

01:05:22   - Yeah, Michael Johnson, who is,

01:05:27   he's a better photographer than I am,

01:05:31   but it's similar to me where we're not pros.

01:05:35   He does software at Pixar.

01:05:38   But we actually even have the same camera.

01:05:40   We have a similar liking for fast prime lenses.

01:05:45   And we just shoot the same way, which

01:05:48   is the way you get a couple of good photos

01:05:50   is if you're going to take a nice camera,

01:05:52   you shoot lots and lots and lots and lots and lots and lots

01:05:54   of photos.

01:05:55   And then you import them.

01:05:56   And you find-- literally, you just throw most of them away,

01:06:02   find the--

01:06:03   -In the old days, we used to say film is cheap.

01:06:04   But that no longer applies.

01:06:06   It actually applies even more now, but yeah.

01:06:08   - Right, and if you watch, if you watch what,

01:06:11   I've talked about this a couple weeks ago

01:06:12   where it's like I really, I cannot wait

01:06:14   for professional photographers to switch

01:06:16   to mirrorless cameras because I find it so annoying

01:06:20   at news events, sports, or like, you know,

01:06:23   when a president of, you know,

01:06:25   the president of the United States

01:06:26   is making a statement or something like that.

01:06:28   And you hear the professional photographers,

01:06:30   it's this machine gun, clack, clack, clack, clack, clack,

01:06:33   like just shooting, you know,

01:06:36   however fast the cameras can go per second,

01:06:38   which is getting to be extraordinarily fast,

01:06:40   you know, 10, 12 shots per second nonstop.

01:06:44   - Oh yeah.

01:06:45   - To get what, one photo to accompany a news story.

01:06:49   But that's what you do because digital's cheap.

01:06:52   Anyway, to me Lightroom has all sorts of features

01:06:54   that are meant to support that sort of workflow

01:06:58   where you can just go through and just,

01:07:01   I forget the key if it's X or whatever,

01:07:02   but you don't even have a modifier.

01:07:04   You just keep going arrow, arrow,

01:07:05   and you can just mark photos for deletion.

01:07:07   And it doesn't even spend--

01:07:08   - Yeah, up bracket I think is the default,

01:07:10   but you may have changed it.

01:07:12   - Yeah, I don't remember what the,

01:07:13   I'd have to look it up.

01:07:14   But more or less my workflow,

01:07:18   and maybe there's other ways to do it,

01:07:19   is you import, let's say, 300 photos into Lightroom.

01:07:23   And you just start going through them,

01:07:26   and you find, my first cut is to just throw out the ones

01:07:29   I don't even wanna bother with.

01:07:31   and I just go through with arrow keys to go through the photos and one key to just mark

01:07:35   for deletion. And it doesn't even delete them. It's like a special flag like you want to

01:07:40   delete this and it dims out the photo. But that way you're not waiting for the disk to

01:07:45   do anything. It's just like a little, you know, one little piece of metadata in a database

01:07:49   and you can go really, really fast and Lightroom.

01:07:52   Yeah, that is X. I'm sorry. I was thinking of star rating, but yeah, you're right.

01:07:56   Yeah, it's X, right? It's... and it makes it... the mnemonic is easy. It's like you're Xing out the photos.

01:08:02   And it's like the real world version of you have a big stack of photos and you just start flipping through

01:08:08   and you put them in two columns. Keepers and, you know, here's the trash can.

01:08:12   Yeah, well, I mean, you literally used to do that with a context sheet. You just X out the ones you didn't want.

01:08:16   So you didn't bother looking at them again.

01:08:18   Exactly, right. That would be the old way, would be the context sheet.

01:08:21   And it's, you know, if you've ever watched, you know,

01:08:23   or you probably did it since you were shooting film

01:08:25   and you were actually a pro, you'd have like a grease pencil

01:08:29   and just literally X amount.

01:08:30   Bottom line for me is the problem with photos

01:08:36   is there's no way to do that.

01:08:37   It's photos to me is fun,

01:08:40   this is the insight I've come to,

01:08:41   is that photos is fundamentally built around

01:08:44   a much more consumer-minded mindset,

01:08:47   which is that most of the photos you take, you wanna keep.

01:08:50   And you know whether that's based on coming from the phone world

01:08:55   You know where you don't even though you can do burst mode and you know, yeah, which is that's their thinking they're wrong

01:09:02   Because I'm sorry, but if you look at like my daughter's iPod

01:09:07   She's got a hundred and fifty thousand selfies on it, and I don't think that's ever gonna change

01:09:11   You know what? I mean? I think that the selfie thing for

01:09:14   for sure, for sure, is something where people take a ton of photos before they find one

01:09:20   that they like.

01:09:21   And I've seen my wife do it.

01:09:22   And she's not even a huge selfie taker, she's not super into that, but every once in a while

01:09:26   she likes to send it to her friends.

01:09:28   Like she got makeup on, like "Oh, I tried this new thing."

01:09:30   But she takes a ton and then picks one, right?

01:09:34   But she still takes that ton.

01:09:36   So yeah, I agree.

01:09:37   I think that it's not just prose.

01:09:39   I think a lot of people do that.

01:09:41   I think if they're thinking is that is people taking one precious photo and being done,

01:09:47   I think they're wrong.

01:09:48   Especially because phones shoot so fast.

01:09:51   Now, you know, they used to just like, "Oh, getting one out of them was a chore."

01:09:55   But now it's like, bam, bam, bam, as you mentioned with the burst and everything.

01:09:59   Yeah, and it just doesn't support that.

01:10:01   And I feel like...

01:10:03   And the other thing too is I kind of feel like they should, not just should support it because I want to use it,

01:10:08   they should support it because I feel like in my honest opinion it's a good

01:10:12   thing to encourage people to do to take lots of photos to try you know and that

01:10:17   that's how you get one or two that are really good don't try to if you want to

01:10:21   get like two really good photos from your kids birthday party don't don't sit

01:10:26   there and try to aim up one or two good ones take 60 70 80 pictures and then go

01:10:31   look through them on as big a screen as you can get and see which ones actually

01:10:35   came out good and I feel like the the app just does not support that I am one

01:10:40   thing is that there's no way it and this is on a new iMac so it is I wouldn't

01:10:45   call it slow and I don't have a huge library I've you know I think I've got

01:10:49   like 20,000 photos in there so I wouldn't call it slow and you know it

01:10:54   imported my old iPhoto library fine but it's it's not that fast and it always

01:11:00   seems to do the wrong thing when I delete like you actually just have to

01:11:03   delete a photo to delete it and just hitting the delete key doesn't work

01:11:07   because that brings up a warning dialog you sure you want to delete it so you

01:11:10   have to command delete right which isn't too bad it's command delete isn't too

01:11:14   bad which is immediate you know and it's it's not the thing that annoys me about

01:11:19   the delete key is that bringing up a dialogue every time is that it it

01:11:25   doesn't it it doesn't wipe it off the disk it moves it to a trash can type

01:11:30   thing where you could get it back or you can do undo if you make a mistake but even then it often

01:11:36   goes to the wrong photo it doesn't go to the next photo it goes to the one I looked at before and

01:11:41   it doesn't seem I and I could be wrong here but maybe I just want to go the wrong way maybe I'm

01:11:47   always trying to go the and it always wants you to go forward in time and I want to go backwards

01:11:51   you know from the most recent to the least recent I don't know but but it when you're in that mode

01:11:57   And you just want to fly through a hundred pictures

01:12:00   It's annoying if you keep having to hit three or four keys and arrow and go back back go back

01:12:07   You know over and over and over again, right? Right? Yeah, I do not think it is built for that kind of editing at all and

01:12:15   There's a couple possibilities one possibility

01:12:18   It could be that we are 100% wrong and that the data supports the fact that people take a few photos at a time

01:12:25   So if you look, if they're like, oh well, you guys don't know what we know.

01:12:30   And what we know is that data on millions and millions of users says that this is the way people shoot.

01:12:35   And we serviced that with this product.

01:12:42   And that you guys are the outliers and you need to use Lightroom.

01:12:44   So that's one possibility.

01:12:47   The second possibility is that there is a disconnect between the team that is building photos

01:12:53   and the teams that built their professional photo products in the past.

01:12:58   So from what I understand, it's not like they took the

01:13:03   Aperture team and had them build photos.

01:13:08   Those people scattered everywhere and are building other things,

01:13:11   for better or for worse.

01:13:16   So if you took the institutional knowledge of the people building Aperture

01:13:18   and brought it in and they could then tell you,

01:13:21   oh man, if you want people to use this

01:13:24   as any sort of core tool, you're gonna need

01:13:27   to support people blasting through a bunch of pictures

01:13:29   and editing them, then maybe that would've been

01:13:32   built differently, but I don't know

01:13:34   if that institutional knowledge was there,

01:13:35   so that's another possibility.

01:13:37   - Well, what I've, what I heard, and I could be wrong,

01:13:40   well, I'm not wrong, I could be wrong

01:13:42   just in a matter of degree, is that it,

01:13:45   What's now called Photos for Mac or just Photos

01:13:49   started life internally as iPhoto X.

01:13:53   It was definitely not just the next version of iPhoto.

01:13:57   It wasn't just a bump the integer.

01:13:59   It was like when they've had these other products

01:14:02   get an X or something like that, like with iMovie,

01:14:05   like where they kind of radically redid the concept of it.

01:14:10   It was a radical rewrite.

01:14:11   It was a rewrite, but it was a rewrite of iPhoto.

01:14:15   - Definitely, and it was even by name.

01:14:16   And it changed after, from where that started,

01:14:19   it did change where they strategically said,

01:14:23   that's the, iPhoto is the wrong way to go.

01:14:26   What we really wanna do is have this unified photo platform

01:14:31   across iOS and Mac, and so we should just do,

01:14:35   follow the lead of iOS and just call it Photos.

01:14:38   And the design changed at that point too, clearly,

01:14:40   because it's clearly a sibling to the iOS Photos app.

01:14:45   But I still think though that that shows in its roots,

01:14:51   'cause to me that was the problem,

01:14:52   I mean, years ago why I didn't use iPhoto

01:14:54   and taught myself to use Lightroom instead

01:14:58   was that iPhoto to me was never ever good

01:15:00   for people who shot a lot of, shot the way I shot.

01:15:03   - Yeah, Lightroom is my boy.

01:15:09   I love Lightroom or my girl, however you want to, I want to be correct about that.

01:15:12   Um, but it, I really, really like it.

01:15:14   I mean, it's the easiest, best tool that has come along for photographers

01:15:20   in generations. And you know, these days there's lots of arguments about it

01:15:23   getting stale and all this stuff, but I still think it's, it got exactly the

01:15:27   right things, right? Which is you,

01:15:29   you need to deal with complex adjustments in a way that allows you granularity of

01:15:34   control. You know, you need to be able to blast through and do an initial pass,

01:15:38   and then you need to be able to kind of diddle down and drill down into minute adjustments.

01:15:43   Even jump out to Photoshop if you really need to and then jump back.

01:15:46   And I think that that was an incredibly smart build for Adobe and really, really well done by them.

01:15:52   I just think it hasn't been matched by any other tools, including Aperture, since it came out.

01:15:57   And I know there's obviously devotees of either side, but people that loved Aperture are out of luck anyway.

01:16:03   So I think it's really, really a great tool.

01:16:06   And I think that it just may be the case that the 80% use cases are never going

01:16:11   to be that way.

01:16:14   And photos is always going to act and work that way. And we're just,

01:16:19   we don't have the data to understand that that's what people want.

01:16:21   But I do agree with you that it's just not great for like going through a bunch

01:16:26   of photos at once. I rarely,

01:16:27   rarely ever use it for anything beyond opening it up,

01:16:31   finding a photo and sharing it. That's the way I treat it. I'm able to search through

01:16:36   photos by date or group or event and share them with family members and that sort of

01:16:41   thing. If I'm going to do any sort of editing, I open it in Lightroom. So I haven't done the

01:16:46   thought experiment of trying to force myself to use it to see if it would

01:16:51   work with my workflow so I haven't gone down the route you're going. But it doesn't

01:16:56   To me for those reasons and I don't I haven't used it so I can't speak to its efficacy there

01:17:01   I'm not I don't want to speak out of turn. Here's a question I have for you

01:17:04   Do you import your photos that you shoot on your iPhone into Lightroom?

01:17:10   No

01:17:13   Me neither with maybe like one or two rare exceptions, you know

01:17:18   Over the course of like six or seven years once or twice. Maybe there'd be something I

01:17:24   I don't maybe I'm even wrong though. I don't maybe I never did I never ever did that. So for four years I had like two

01:17:30   completely different photo universes

01:17:34   there was my Lightroom library which was the images I shot with my you know, Canon digital SLR and

01:17:40   you know within the last few years my

01:17:43   Fuji x100 s oh and and years earlier years. I had the Rico GRD

01:17:52   And in my mind, those were my real photos.

01:17:56   And then I had my iPhone photo library,

01:17:59   which was mostly just on my iPhone.

01:18:02   And then every once in a while,

01:18:03   I would open up just image capture,

01:18:07   copy all the ones off, and put them in a folder

01:18:10   in my Dropbox just so I'd have a backup on my--

01:18:14   - Right.

01:18:14   - I just have like a full, I literally just have,

01:18:17   it just goes by year.

01:18:19   And I know Dropbox has some kind of feature like that,

01:18:21   But I don't like that feature

01:18:22   'cause I don't want Dropbox screwing around

01:18:24   with my other photos.

01:18:26   All I want is somewhere where everything I've taken

01:18:28   with my iPhone is, you know,

01:18:30   somewhere where it's accessible online.

01:18:32   So I just have like a Dropbox,

01:18:34   I have like a iPhone photo library or something,

01:18:38   I forget what I called it.

01:18:40   And then inside that, it's just one folder for each year,

01:18:43   and inside that are all the photos

01:18:44   I took on my iPhone from that year, that's it.

01:18:46   - Right.

01:18:47   - But, so I really like,

01:18:49   I really do like about photos for Mac and the iCloud photo library is I love

01:18:54   that I don't have to do that by hand I don't have to like remember hey you know

01:18:59   it's been a couple months since I've backed up the you know the photos on my

01:19:03   phone they just show up and I like you know it's one of those things where

01:19:07   people say Apple doesn't get services right well the for me at least the

01:19:11   iCloud photo library they got right because I take a screenshot on my phone

01:19:15   or it's there within seconds yeah it's there by the time I put my phone down

01:19:19   and go to my keyboard and switch to the photos app and I go to that's been

01:19:24   really really good and that is really really convenient for things like if I

01:19:30   want to send somebody a screenshot of like an app that I'm testing it's great

01:19:36   if I'm at my desk and I have my you know Mac right here and so I can it would be

01:19:40   a lot easier for me to take or maybe I'm already halfway through writing the

01:19:43   email on my Mac. It's great to just switch to the, you know, take the

01:19:48   screenshot on my phone, go to the photos app, and there it is and I can get it

01:19:53   right out. That's fantastic. So yeah, it's really good. I mean, remember how bad, I

01:19:58   mean, it was so bad before. Like, it would never show up in half the time. You have to

01:20:03   reset it all the time and stuff. So they did a good job with this

01:20:05   iteration of it. Yeah. I don't know what to do in the long run, though. I don't

01:20:12   don't know. I guess what I maybe what I should do, but it seems like an awful lot

01:20:16   of busy work, is that every time I shoot photos that I put into Lightroom, do my

01:20:22   pics, adjust them the way I want, and export them all to, you know, the highest

01:20:27   resolution JPEG possible, and then import those into the Photos app, just so that

01:20:31   those photos... Does Photos support a watched folder? I don't think it does, and if it

01:20:37   did... That would be ideal. Yeah, but the problem, I, that, and again, maybe I'm not enough, maybe I

01:20:42   I need to you know take an advanced Linda course on Lightroom, but I don't think that there's a way

01:20:46   But this because Lightroom is non-destructive

01:20:49   I don't think there's a way that there would be a watched photo a watched thing that would pick up my adjustments

01:20:56   Unless I know you'd have to manually export them to do egg, but in that fold that watch oh

01:21:01   You know what I mean? Yeah, I see what you mean, so all I'd have to do is do the X

01:21:06   I got a tennis has that watch folder thing yeah

01:21:09   I don't know. Yeah, I don't think it does but it would be a good feature if they added it if anybody else for now

01:21:14   I'm bifurcated right down the middle. I mean, I'm still like everything my family

01:21:19   Stuff like the stuff that comes off of my what my wife and I the way I set it up

01:21:24   Is that she has her own iCloud account for a lot of stuff that we share purchases and I've rigged it up

01:21:30   So that any photos we take are all imported. So we have you know shared iCloud for that

01:21:36   So I see her photos and my photos all in one I photo library. My wife doesn't even have a computer

01:21:41   She uses her phone and an iPad. She doesn't she's not interested. She did her work doesn't use it. She doesn't need it

01:21:48   So it's not really a priority for her. She uses my laptop once every couple of months, you know

01:21:54   Like oh, I'm gonna go, you know browse a bunch of shopping sites or something

01:21:56   But in general she does all of it from her iPad and phone and so anything she takes or shoots or any that is just

01:22:01   dumped into my central repository on my iMac, which is of course then backed up via Time

01:22:06   Machine and then backed up to Backblaze separately.

01:22:11   But that central repository is our life from the beginning.

01:22:16   I think that honestly the first photos in my iPhoto library are right now...

01:22:20   So I got married in 2004 and the photos in my library...

01:22:27   Wait, 2005?

01:22:30   Oh my god, my wife's going to kill me.

01:22:31   Anyhow, I got married before the iPhone, pre-iPhone.

01:22:36   So the first photos in my library,

01:22:39   from phones and all that jazz-- I had some older stuff imported

01:22:41   in there, but mostly from the phones and stuff.

01:22:43   Everything is our life together imported into that library.

01:22:48   And once she got an iPhone, she started basically getting

01:22:50   my hand-me-down iPhones and then eventually buying

01:22:53   her own iPhones, new ones, when she wanted them.

01:22:57   all of those photos are all

01:22:59   in that repository. And so I view that as a timeline of my life.

01:23:04   And I know this is the way that

01:23:05   this is the value that companies like Facebook and Dropbox see in the

01:23:09   auto upload and Google.

01:23:11   Because it's a timeline of your entire life, right?

01:23:14   Those photos are,

01:23:15   there's so much data from them. And if Google can for instance tell you

01:23:19   what's winter, then they know your kid's growing up. They can probably estimate its

01:23:23   age, right? Like these are,

01:23:26   there's a lot of data in those photos and not to mention the actual

01:23:30   metadata

01:23:30   which is very easy to read

01:23:32   so

01:23:33   that aspect of things

01:23:35   that timeline, I like having that one repository for it

01:23:41   there in photos now

01:23:43   and I don't like mixing in, because when I used to shoot

01:23:47   like a wedding or something like that, I don't want that in there

01:23:49   right? I don't want that in my family library

01:23:52   so that goes in iPhoto

01:23:53   And then if I ever do like, you know, a formal shoot or if I pick up my SLR, which is getting

01:23:58   more and more rare to be honest, and shoot family photos, then I will export those and

01:24:02   I'll import those into iPhoto so that it remains a canonical record, you know, of our lives

01:24:08   together in that thing.

01:24:10   Whereas Lightroom is more along the lines of like, oh, I have a rare free day and I'm

01:24:15   going to go shoot landscapes or, you know, shoot macro stuff or whatever.

01:24:20   I'm going to use Lightroom for that purely.

01:24:21   I'm never gonna touch photos.app with that stuff.

01:24:26   - Same here.

01:24:27   All right, enough on photos.

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01:27:41   and they have a 45 day return policy.

01:27:43   Here's the thing, it's 100 bucks, period.

01:27:47   You just buy it, it's just a thing that you buy.

01:27:49   It's not a service you subscribe to.

01:27:51   You don't pay 10 bucks a month

01:27:52   so that you can keep using it.

01:27:54   You buy one of these things once, 100 bucks.

01:27:57   But with the code, the talk show, it's only 80 bucks.

01:28:00   80 bucks, that's it.

01:28:02   You own it, you're in, you're good

01:28:04   for as long as the thing lasts.

01:28:06   And that's it, 80 bucks.

01:28:08   And you get all of this cool stuff,

01:28:09   app is free. All of these things are free. It's really, really fun. So anybody who has

01:28:13   a car, why not buy this thing for 80 bucks? You're crazy if you don't. So go to automatic.com.

01:28:20   Automatic is spelled the normal way. automatic.com/thetalkshow and find out more. My thanks to them. Go buy

01:28:25   this thing. It's really, really cool and set up some cool if this, then that recipes. How

01:28:31   do you pronounce I-F-T-T-T? I don't know if you say if this, then that or do you say I-F-T-T-T?

01:28:37   I say "ift." I may be wrong. Yeah, I just say "ift."

01:28:42   It's one of those things where I see it, I read it with my eyes all the time, and I don't

01:28:47   really hear it. I don't know how you're supposed to say it.

01:28:51   When I interview them, I think they say "ift." Like, I've talked to those guys plenty, and

01:28:55   I think they say "ift." I may be wrong, but I like that stuff. I like that thing a lot,

01:29:01   that product. I really hope they find a path to success there in terms of how to survive,

01:29:06   make money because I think it's awesome.

01:29:08   Yeah, yeah, they're like the glue between everything.

01:29:13   What's the Internet of Things? God, that's an annoying term.

01:29:16   But if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if, if,

01:29:16   but if if it is it's more and more it's like everything that could integrate

01:29:25   with that integrates with it which is really kind of awesome and it's sort of

01:29:29   an old to me it's it the thing that they have that I really like is it's the old

01:29:34   school like early internet idea of we're gonna open this stuff up and have a PIs

01:29:41   and we're just truly open.

01:29:45   Anything that can integrate with us,

01:29:47   you don't have to work out a business development deal

01:29:49   or something like that,

01:29:50   or we're not gonna cut you off,

01:29:51   like with the Twitter API where there's these keys

01:29:55   and you can get cut off based on the whims of the stuff.

01:29:58   It's all just open, it's just there,

01:29:59   and any way you can figure out a way

01:30:01   to integrate your product with them, you can do it,

01:30:03   which to me is really cool,

01:30:05   and we don't see enough of that anymore.

01:30:08   - No, I mean, they're the spiritual successor

01:30:10   Yahoo pipes which was just shut down this year yeah I loved Yahoo pipes so

01:30:15   yeah yeah it's a shame that they because that was a very Yahoo feature too it's a

01:30:19   shame that they I'm not surprised that they got rid of it but it's yeah I'm not

01:30:23   shocked I'm not like oh why you know it's still kind of bummer that it

01:30:27   doesn't exist anymore you know yeah what else what else is in the news I saw

01:30:32   there's a thing last week where the San Jose Business Journal reported that

01:30:37   Apple bought an enormous piece of land.

01:30:42   I guess it's about as big as the campus

01:30:46   that they're building somewhere in that

01:30:49   undeveloped land outside San Jose.

01:30:51   I'm sure you saw. - Yeah, they bought

01:30:53   a big chunk of property, yeah.

01:30:56   - And nobody really has any idea

01:30:57   what the hell they're gonna do with it.

01:31:00   Right? - No, I'm sorry.

01:31:02   - But that's the thing.

01:31:02   It's like, it is news and it is interesting

01:31:05   that they bought an enormous piece of land,

01:31:08   but then they're not saying what they're gonna do with it,

01:31:12   and so everybody is just left to speculate,

01:31:14   which is great because this is what we do,

01:31:16   we're professional speculators.

01:31:18   - Yeah, exactly, exactly.

01:31:20   It is almost better when you can just speculate,

01:31:22   when you know that literally only four people

01:31:25   even know what they're gonna build on it.

01:31:27   Tim Cook knows, Eddie knows,

01:31:29   like a couple other people know, but that's it.

01:31:33   'Cause then you're free to just say,

01:31:35   hey, I wonder what they could do.

01:31:37   You're not actually tied down to going,

01:31:39   well, let's report this out because somebody knows.

01:31:42   There's a chain.

01:31:42   Yeah, I mean, 15,000 workers or whatever there

01:31:47   is what Mercury News was estimating, I think,

01:31:50   that they could hold.

01:31:51   And they already bought a 290,000 square foot building

01:31:56   in North San Jose as well.

01:31:58   And I guess this is like their first office there

01:32:00   since the '80s.

01:32:01   So they're definitely investing.

01:32:03   And it is interesting to me that they're buying a plot

01:32:08   of land that is car factory sized.

01:32:13   - Yeah. - I mean,

01:32:14   it's just interesting.

01:32:15   Interesting is like the only word

01:32:18   I can use for it at the moment.

01:32:21   - I do wonder though, I mean, and it's like,

01:32:24   if they don't build any of the compute,

01:32:30   I know, and I guess they do build like the Mac Pros,

01:32:32   But that whole building the Mac Pros in the US thing,

01:32:35   you haven't heard much about that recently.

01:32:37   And the phones of course are still all assembled in China.

01:32:42   I'm not saying that means that they would,

01:32:43   and I realize that shipping a phone from China to the US

01:32:46   is very different than shipping a car from China to the US.

01:32:50   And I'm not saying that means

01:32:51   that they would make cars in China, but I don't know.

01:32:53   The factory, it is interesting that it is roughly the,

01:32:57   it would fit a factory.

01:32:58   And there are cars made in the US.

01:33:00   I mean, that's the difference.

01:33:03   There's a lot of cars made in the US.

01:33:05   So it's possible.

01:33:06   It's, you know, it sure is interesting.

01:33:10   - What's the square foot?

01:33:11   So it's 43 acres.

01:33:16   And I wonder what square foot is that rural is it?

01:33:18   Because the Tesla factory is 5.3 million square feet.

01:33:22   I don't know what this 43 acre piece of land

01:33:26   translates into.

01:33:28   - Right.

01:33:29   but it seems to be a comparative size,

01:33:32   but I'm getting into trouble here

01:33:33   because I haven't done the math.

01:33:34   But regardless, Tesla has a factory in Fremont.

01:33:37   You know the story behind that,

01:33:39   how they got that factory, right?

01:33:40   - No, I don't think so.

01:33:41   - So there was a factory there

01:33:46   that was owned by GM and Toyota.

01:33:49   And it was like 1984, Toyota and GM got together.

01:33:57   this was like right post the whole Japanese cars, what?

01:34:00   And then everybody was realizing Toyota was actually way ahead of American manufacturing.

01:34:04   And they got together and they created this thing called NUMI, which is, I don't know

01:34:09   what it stands for, I just remember the acronym because it's funny, but it's like a united

01:34:15   motor or something.

01:34:16   But basically they got together and created this NUMI partnership where they worked on

01:34:20   advanced tech in there together that they would share, whether that's stuff that goes

01:34:25   in the dash or drive train or whatever, I don't know.

01:34:30   But anyhow, it was this partnership that existed for years until 2009.

01:34:32   And right when the partnership was dissolving and they were looking to sell the

01:34:36   factory, Tesla was running out of money and didn't have enough to buy to build

01:34:40   their own, but just had enough money and was able to raise enough money to buy

01:34:45   this factory. And I think GM actually took a stake, if I remember correctly, in

01:34:51   Tesla or Toyota did, I can't remember which. But basically they were able to buy this factory

01:34:55   for pennies, pennies on the dollar. Because this would normally require billions to buy.

01:35:01   But Apple certainly doesn't have that problem. They have billions. They could definitely

01:35:05   buy their own factory. But I thought it was very interesting. Tesla was able to scoop

01:35:08   this thing up and renovate it and make it their own. Now they've done several upgrades.

01:35:12   It's all pristine, white, and all kinds of robotic stuff inside. It's very, very impressive.

01:35:17   but one wonders what one could do with unlimited funds,

01:35:22   right, and not having to just scoop up something

01:35:25   that already existed on the fly,

01:35:27   'cause Tesla's done a pretty decent job

01:35:28   of turning out cars from that

01:35:30   when nobody thought they ever could.

01:35:32   So it'd be interesting to see what somebody could bill

01:35:34   from the ground up that had essentially unlimited money.

01:35:37   - Big picture, and it's one of those

01:35:41   where there's smoke, there's fire things.

01:35:42   I mean, Apple's made the hires,

01:35:43   they've hired people from the auto industry.

01:35:46   it's, you know, in some sense it seems crazy.

01:35:49   It's like, come on, is everybody gonna make cars?

01:35:51   I mean, you know, it's just, but on the other hand,

01:35:54   it's, to me, it kind of makes sense.

01:35:57   And to me, the idea of Apple getting into making cars.

01:36:00   And you know, there was this big leak

01:36:02   that they've had high level discussions with BMW

01:36:05   about a partnership maybe.

01:36:06   You know, clearly they're looking into it.

01:36:10   I mean, you can almost state that as a fact.

01:36:12   I mean, the only way that it's not a fact

01:36:15   they're at least thinking about making cars would mean that an awful lot of reporting

01:36:20   is has been fabricated so let's you know they're at least looking into it.

01:36:25   I think it's definitely safe to say they're looking at cars the automotive space I mean

01:36:29   they're not going to get into carplay and not think about the rest of the dash at the

01:36:32   very least.

01:36:34   I think it did you know at a very high level it just makes intuitive sense because cars

01:36:38   cost a lot of money and they involve they and can be differentiated and

01:36:44   succeed because of design and they're going to be increasingly computerized in

01:36:53   various ways not just like what you know having a touchscreen on the dash but you

01:36:58   know this self-driving and stuff like that and crash detection and you know

01:37:02   trying to make cars that whether they're self-driving or entirely or partially or

01:37:07   or something like that, but we're gonna head,

01:37:11   within our lifetimes, we're gonna get to a point

01:37:12   where cars can't crash.

01:37:14   Or at least it's exceedingly rare.

01:37:20   - Yeah, it's very, very difficult to do.

01:37:23   - Try to get it up to airline levels of safety.

01:37:26   As opposed to, it's truly, I mean, if you really,

01:37:31   I think, and then we'll quickly look back

01:37:33   on the number of people who die every year now

01:37:37   car accidents and we're gonna you know it's gonna look barbaric I really do

01:37:40   think that's coming I think but you know so there's a there's money to be made be

01:37:44   design counts see they can be cool therefore why wouldn't Apple want to

01:37:51   make it really I mean aren't those the exact arguments behind why they got into

01:37:54   making watches people spend a lot of money on them design counts and we think

01:37:59   watches are cool therefore we're gonna make a watch mm-hmm yeah yeah I think so

01:38:05   - No, I think you're right in that the thought process is,

01:38:08   can we differentiate, right?

01:38:10   It's not can we make money.

01:38:11   And I think that a lot of people run aground against that

01:38:13   when they're thinking about what Apple will or won't do

01:38:16   or may or may not do.

01:38:17   And then they run aground against this argument like,

01:38:19   oh, well, can they make a bunch of money at it?

01:38:21   And that's not necessarily the argument.

01:38:23   I mean, I think it's obviously part of it.

01:38:24   And I don't ever foresee Apple going into a business

01:38:28   where they can't sustain it on its own merit

01:38:31   or as a support structure for another business,

01:38:34   which is the way iTunes worked for many years

01:38:36   until it started making a lot of money.

01:38:38   But I think that it's highly unlikely

01:38:41   that they're ever going to go into a space

01:38:43   where they can't differentiate themselves strongly.

01:38:46   And that differentiation doesn't lead

01:38:48   to what they perceive anyway.

01:38:50   Let's just sidestep any arguments,

01:38:52   but what they perceive to be consumer benefit,

01:38:55   benefit for people that are buying it.

01:38:57   And I think cars are ripe for that.

01:38:59   Because I mean, I love cars.

01:39:02   I mean, I grew up building cars with my dad.

01:39:04   I love them in all forms from old to new and you know this side to that side of the the world but

01:39:10   Most of them most of them are crap

01:39:14   like there's their crap like you like I sit in like I crawl into a

01:39:20   I don't even want to mention brand names because somebody will get offended but like you crawl into a like a mid-sized sedan

01:39:25   and you just look at like the finish makes my skin itch like that the

01:39:30   The door panels, you touch them and the plastic you feel like the fingertip feel on the steering

01:39:37   wheel just makes me break out in a rash most of the time. And so I just think that there's so

01:39:41   many. I mean, can you imagine, Joni, I've waxing, rhapsodic about the leather wrapping on a steering

01:39:46   wheel. I could, you know, I just think that there's plenty of opportunity there for them to offer

01:39:50   a cut above at a price that is reasonable for what you're getting like safety innovations,

01:39:59   design innovations, technology and electronics innovations that set them apart from the pack,

01:40:05   offer user benefit and allow them to differentiate. It's like a no-brainer that they could do something

01:40:09   there. Right, and the industry is heading towards some sort of inflection point where new technologies

01:40:15   are finally, I hate to abuse the word finally, but finally, you know, taking over from internal

01:40:21   combustion engine. And I haven't, I've actually never been in a Tesla Model S. I do love, I love

01:40:28   I love the way they look, but I've never been in one.

01:40:31   But somebody mentioned the other day

01:40:33   that it doesn't have the,

01:40:35   because it doesn't have a transmission,

01:40:37   it doesn't have the transmission hump on the floor.

01:40:40   - Right, yeah, there's no center column hump.

01:40:42   - Right, and it never occurred to me

01:40:46   that a car wouldn't have that.

01:40:50   Every car I've ever been in has had the transmission hump.

01:40:52   I've never even thought about--

01:40:53   - You've treated it as lost space.

01:40:55   You never get it back. - Right, so what do you mean

01:40:57   that there's not, I was like, oh,

01:40:58   Of course not, but that's crazy to me.

01:41:00   And it's just one small thing of like,

01:41:02   hey look, we can rethink lots of things

01:41:05   with new technology and we're headed there.

01:41:07   So it's kind of exciting.

01:41:08   The thing is is that making cars is physically,

01:41:12   it takes a lot of space.

01:41:14   So I really do hate to, I mean, it's just a guess.

01:41:16   I don't know anything about this real estate transaction.

01:41:19   - Yeah, me neither.

01:41:20   - If I had to bet though, boy, I have to think

01:41:23   it's about the car development thing.

01:41:24   Just because I think you need so much space.

01:41:27   and maybe you'd want to have them off on their own campus.

01:41:32   - Yeah, I mean, the problem with all this

01:41:35   the divining rod stuff about the car

01:41:37   and about any other project is that they probably have

01:41:39   half a dozen really far out projects that would blow up

01:41:44   in headlines going on right now.

01:41:47   They literally are just like, I don't know,

01:41:48   let's try this, right?

01:41:50   And they put several people on it

01:41:52   and they give them some resources and they play with it

01:41:54   until they see if something interesting comes of it.

01:41:56   and i think that's just the value of having their structure their cellular

01:41:59   structure

01:42:00   uh... the way that the

01:42:02   they develop products and experiment play with different lines of thought

01:42:06   so the watch interface came out of that and you know that uh... obviously

01:42:10   multi-touch everybody knows by now the multi-touch came out of that

01:42:13   you know out of essentially a side that experiment

01:42:16   and that kind of thing leads to

01:42:21   I mean, it leads to misinformation, because somebody can take something as being in production

01:42:28   or them getting ready to launch and it's really just four guys in a room kind of talking about

01:42:32   it. And I think that that aspect of it leads to a lot of false starts and false leads and

01:42:38   all that jazz. So it's hard to throw a dividing rod on this. But considering the stuff that

01:42:44   we've heard publicly and seen publicly, the amount of people that they've hired there,

01:42:48   I think it's safe to say that they see something

01:42:50   worth exploring in the automotive space.

01:42:53   And I think that if you're looking there,

01:42:56   then you start thinking about technologies

01:42:58   that would attach to that space.

01:43:00   And some of the stuff that we've seen

01:43:03   over the past couple of years,

01:43:04   like patents and things that I've heard

01:43:06   and things that people have reported,

01:43:08   but were never able to really lock down,

01:43:10   it starts to make some sense.

01:43:12   Because when you start thinking about rethinking the car,

01:43:15   as you mentioned with like the hump on the floor, right?

01:43:18   that's something you don't foresee until you get in there and then you're like,

01:43:21   "Oh, hey, we don't need this, right? This doesn't exist in our car."

01:43:25   Tesla's first one was a revamped smart car from GM and then they did a revamped Mercedes,

01:43:32   like a Mercedes C-glass or something like that, that they just made electric.

01:43:36   Obviously in those, those design things aren't apparent

01:43:39   because they haven't built it from the ground up to work it the way that they want.

01:43:43   And then when they start designing the Model S, they're like, "Oh, hey, we don't need this."

01:43:47   And I think that there's some other things you could think about, like,

01:43:50   for instance, augmented reality, right?

01:43:52   You've seen Apple patents about 3D gesture control

01:43:55   and augmented reality for a while and rumblings of that.

01:43:57   What if they have an augmented reality team and somebody goes, Oh, well,

01:44:00   they're going to launch augmented reality for in like a glass of glasses for your face?

01:44:04   Well, maybe not. What if it's for a windshield?

01:44:07   What if you don't have to think about the way a windshield works in the same way?

01:44:11   And obviously other car manufacturers have sort of played with this idea

01:44:14   of the windshield providing you with a heads up display.

01:44:17   But what if they took that to its logical extent and said,

01:44:20   it's not only going to give you, you know, like, oh, here's the speed limit.

01:44:24   It's going to give you

01:44:26   collision warnings and it's going to highlight potholes for you and all this

01:44:29   other stuff. There's

01:44:30   just so much stuff that could be done

01:44:32   but hasn't been done because people are so tied into the way things work now.

01:44:37   And they're convinced that they can get away

01:44:40   with offering people the lowest common denominator of product

01:44:43   and still charge them the same amount for it. So they don't have to.

01:44:46   They've not been forced to innovate by anybody.

01:44:48   And Tesla's starting to do that.

01:44:50   There's certain people starting to feel the heat from them.

01:44:52   But can you imagine how the industry would be changed

01:44:54   if Apple kind of threw their hat in the ring and said,

01:44:57   "We're thinking hard about this,

01:44:58   "and this is the way things work now."

01:45:00   I mean, look at the damn phones.

01:45:02   Like everybody was happy with the way phones were working.

01:45:04   And then Apple's like, "No, this is the way it should work."

01:45:06   And everybody's like, "Oh, okay, yeah,

01:45:07   "that's the way things work now."

01:45:10   So I think there's cool potential there

01:45:12   for everyone to end up benefiting,

01:45:15   regardless of whether they own an Apple car or not.

01:45:17   And I think those are the coolest things.

01:45:19   - I think the thing that gets overlooked about

01:45:23   from the tech industry is like inside the valley,

01:45:28   the perspective that I think is missed

01:45:32   is the degree to which Apple can,

01:45:35   with the stature that they have now,

01:45:40   the way that they can influence the culture as a whole.

01:45:43   And just as where I'm going with this

01:45:45   is the way that they've just got people

01:45:47   talking about watches period outside the tech world.

01:45:52   And in the tech world, the argument would be,

01:45:56   well, we've been, Apple Watch is just the newest smartwatch.

01:46:00   We've had Pebble and there's Android Wear

01:46:02   and Samsung has made a whole bunch of watches

01:46:06   in the last two or three years.

01:46:08   And none of those ever, ever exited the,

01:46:12   You have to be a nerd to even know about them.

01:46:15   Nobody, and regardless of how many people

01:46:18   have already bought an Apple Watch,

01:46:22   it's out there and people,

01:46:23   like when I wear my Apple Watch,

01:46:25   people say, "Is that an Apple Watch?"

01:46:27   Like, they just are aware that it exists.

01:46:30   Like, to me, that sort of awareness could really,

01:46:33   Apple can influence the car industry in the same way.

01:46:37   That people will be aware of it

01:46:40   in a way that they're not aware of,

01:46:43   you know, like Google self-driving cars and stuff like that.

01:46:48   - Yeah, I think so too.

01:46:49   I think that there's an opportunity there for them

01:46:50   to sort of lay down a bar that people have to cross, right,

01:46:55   and have to rise above in order to be relevant.

01:46:59   And that's the sort of thing with the phones.

01:47:01   - I just thought, wouldn't it be funny

01:47:03   if they came out with a car,

01:47:05   then you had to have an iPhone?

01:47:07   (laughing)

01:47:09   - Yeah, like, oh yeah, it works without your iPhone,

01:47:13   but only for 20 miles.

01:47:15   - It doesn't, no GPS, nothing.

01:47:19   I don't know, maybe it doesn't even start up

01:47:21   without your iPhone, I don't know.

01:47:23   Or maybe it does, you know, like the only way

01:47:25   you can start it is through, you know,

01:47:29   Touch ID with your watch or phone.

01:47:31   Let me take one last break here

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01:52:06   What else is in the news? I'm trying to think. There was the thing, you know, you must know

01:52:10   about this. And I guess it didn't come out. It just came out yesterday with Mark Gurman,

01:52:15   your former colleague, Daryl Etherington,

01:52:19   is now working for Apple PR in Toronto?

01:52:22   - Yeah, yeah, I mean, I don't know.

01:52:25   I obviously know he doesn't work for me anymore.

01:52:29   - I was about to say.

01:52:31   I was about to say, I would hope, Matthew,

01:52:35   that you know half the story.

01:52:36   - Yes, Daryl is no longer in our employ.

01:52:42   He doesn't work for me anymore,

01:52:43   But I, out of respect for him, didn't pry into what exactly he's doing, although my

01:52:49   assumption is yes, comms in Canada.

01:52:51   >> Yeah, it's a gentleman's agreement when it's somebody who was your former colleague.

01:52:57   But it's interesting --

01:52:58   >> Yeah, and it doesn't make any sense for me to pry anymore because it's a company we

01:53:03   cover and the less that I learn about it through friend channels, the more I can report on

01:53:07   it through my normal reporting channels.

01:53:09   You know, it's just -- it's one of those things.

01:53:10   it's a careful line you have to tread, especially when somebody

01:53:14   crosses the line in between

01:53:16   PR or comms

01:53:19   and a journalistic entity. There are some people that get

01:53:23   irritated with that, especially there are some

01:53:25   hardline journalists that are really irritated by it.

01:53:28   I'm on my third career and I'm very, very

01:53:31   reluctant to denigrate anybody,

01:53:33   to look down on anybody for trying to chase what makes them happy

01:53:37   and find something that they want to be happy doing.

01:53:39   And hey, I wish them the best.

01:53:41   - Yeah, while you're doing the job on one of these sides,

01:53:46   like if you're like us right now

01:53:48   and you're in some kind of media

01:53:51   where we're covering Apple for our readership

01:53:56   and somebody else is working for Apple on their PR staff,

01:54:01   it's obviously it is two opposing sides

01:54:04   where one side is, you know, by definition their job is to push the company's line and our job is

01:54:10   to make sure that we're writing what's true and useful for our readership. I don't think there's

01:54:17   any reason to have hard feelings about somebody who goes from one side to the other. I mean,

01:54:22   it's sort of a natural transition. The thing is though, here's the thing though, the thing is that

01:54:30   where it's disproportionate, where it's not balanced,

01:54:34   is Apple has a lot of money.

01:54:38   And the--

01:54:39   - Yes, I'm aware, I know.

01:54:42   It's very hard to compete with.

01:54:44   - And the media, in general, is not going through

01:54:48   a good time, and some publications are going through

01:54:51   a terrible time, and even, I think this might be

01:54:55   why you laugh, is even publications that are thriving

01:54:58   or being successful, don't have the sort of budgets for salaries that maybe Apple does.

01:55:05   Right.

01:55:06   I think that's a fair assumption to make, yes.

01:55:10   TechCrunch is doing okay, but yeah, we definitely don't have $160 billion in the bank if we

01:55:15   need to juice some salaries here and there.

01:55:19   I mean, I think it's more interesting in light of the overall.

01:55:23   And I've had, excuse me, pardon me,

01:55:25   I had a chat with my colleague Drew Olenoff,

01:55:27   who we've hired him back, he used to work at TechCrunch.

01:55:31   And I liked working with Drew, I used to work with him

01:55:32   at the Nextweb as well.

01:55:34   But Drew has spent some time in comms.

01:55:36   He was actually in, with startups, managing community

01:55:40   and doing comms before he was ever a writer.

01:55:43   And then kind of went back to it for a while,

01:55:44   worked at Yahoo for a while and handled comms over there.

01:55:49   Was recently at a couple startups and stuff like that,

01:55:51   but just really had a desire to write again.

01:55:53   And I'm really happy about that

01:55:55   'cause I was able to work with him again

01:55:57   'cause he's actually, he's got a great mind

01:55:58   and thinks about this stuff great.

01:56:00   And because of his work there, he's got good perspective.

01:56:03   So I honestly think that that experience

01:56:06   on both sides of the line makes you a more savvy reporter,

01:56:10   makes you understand what companies are saying

01:56:13   when they say certain things, when they're BSing you.

01:56:17   your BS detector is better, I think, in general.

01:56:21   But I don't think that it's one of those things that it's impossible to be honest

01:56:26   or be good at your job if there's ever a possibility of you crossing that line back and forth.

01:56:31   Because I think that assumes people are automatons and that there's no editorial direction

01:56:38   and no editor going, "Hey, should we be pushing harder on this?"

01:56:43   And nobody's paying attention or whatever.

01:56:45   So I think that there's lots of implications there if you're saying this can never happen.

01:56:50   Yeah, that you're part of a tribe and that you've somehow betrayed your tribe by switching

01:56:54   to the other side.

01:56:55   I mean, I think that's nonsense.

01:56:56   I mean, and it starts really at the top.

01:56:57   I mean, Steve Dowling got to Apple from, I believe, directly.

01:57:03   He was the CNBC Silicon Valley correspondent.

01:57:09   So he went right from reporting on companies like Apple

01:57:13   for TV to being, now he's the head of PR.

01:57:17   And I can't help but think that maybe there's a little,

01:57:22   even though a lot of the hires that they've had

01:57:23   have not been for PR, and supposedly,

01:57:27   as reported by Mark Gurman,

01:57:28   that's what Etherington's doing.

01:57:30   But it wouldn't surprise me that under Dowling's leadership

01:57:35   that they might go more in that direction

01:57:37   just because that's how he got there.

01:57:40   - Well, remember too that if you look at Mark's report,

01:57:43   he reported later on that Josh Loewenson was from The Verge,

01:57:47   who was also on the Applebee that's CNET.

01:57:49   He also was hired.

01:57:51   Right around the same time Darrell was hired,

01:57:52   it looks like, from the report.

01:57:55   And I don't know anything about that,

01:57:56   but it seems like you could be right

01:57:58   in that there's a streak there of that.

01:58:00   Obviously, as somebody in this industry

01:58:04   who works with other Apple reporters,

01:58:06   and pays attention to the company,

01:58:08   it's been really obvious to me

01:58:10   that they've been snapping up Apple reporters,

01:58:12   as I'm sure you know.

01:58:13   I mean, they hired like Chris Breen,

01:58:14   and they hired Anand and Brian from AnandTech.

01:58:19   And not all of those, as you mentioned,

01:58:22   have been for comms position.

01:58:23   - Right, supposedly--

01:58:24   - But it seems like they have been raping and pillaging,

01:58:26   oh, excuse me, pillaging the,

01:58:28   I don't wanna lighten that term by using it,

01:58:31   but in the Viking sense,

01:58:33   they've been pillaging the media village.

01:58:36   I think that it's evident that that's what they're doing.

01:58:39   Whether that's like Steve is like, "Hey, these guys are the people we need to get," or what,

01:58:44   I don't know.

01:58:45   Yeah.

01:58:46   And I know John Seth from Mac, and this was also in Germin's story yesterday, he's not

01:58:50   working in PR.

01:58:51   He's working at Apple University.

01:58:55   And another one that wasn't mentioned and isn't really a media hire, but it sort of

01:58:59   is.

01:59:00   And I feel like he's just like so many people when they go to Apple.

01:59:03   outside their walls he's gone very quiet is Michael Gartenberg. Oh right. Who, you

01:59:11   know, was an analyst and was the rare gem of an Apple analyst who was really smart

01:59:19   and insightful and wrote very clearly in normal, you know, straightforward language.

01:59:26   And so yeah, of course that's why they hired him because he was the good one.

01:59:30   - Right, right, but my thing is,

01:59:32   they're shooting themselves in the damn foot

01:59:34   because there's not gonna be anybody left outside

01:59:36   who understands their business and can be moderated

01:59:40   about the way that they report on it.

01:59:42   - Garten-- - Like it's--

01:59:43   - Gartenberg-- - It's just going crazy.

01:59:44   - Gartenberg doesn't work in PR.

01:59:46   He is in Schiller's group, but doing what?

01:59:50   I don't know, so he's somewhere in product marketing.

01:59:53   - Oh, okay, gotcha.

01:59:54   - Which is-- - Yeah, I mean,

01:59:55   it makes sense that they would bring those people on

01:59:56   that understand their business and have an insight, right,

01:59:59   that they can tap into internally.

02:00:02   It just seems funny to me because it's,

02:00:04   they're like, if you hire all of the reporters

02:00:07   that are able to write about you

02:00:09   without being histrionic or stupid,

02:00:11   then all you're left with is a bunch of,

02:00:15   (laughing)

02:00:16   of like flag-waving crazies, you know,

02:00:19   who are happy to tromp all over you.

02:00:22   And whatever reason, like, you know,

02:00:23   you could argue that Apple's closed-mouth attitudes

02:00:26   have maybe exacerbated that problem.

02:00:30   But whatever the case may be,

02:00:32   you're definitely removing pieces from the board

02:00:38   that could be not advocates, 'cause that's not their job,

02:00:41   and hopefully it's not their job,

02:00:43   but could report on it with intelligence

02:00:45   and with moderation.

02:00:46   And when they have criticisms,

02:00:47   they are based in a contextual understanding

02:00:50   of the way the company actually works,

02:00:52   not the way that you make it work

02:00:55   through intellectual dishonesty when you're reporting on it.

02:00:58   And so I think that there's something, I don't know.

02:01:00   Some people are like, hey, they're smart,

02:01:02   they need to go there.

02:01:03   And then Mike, on the other side, I say,

02:01:05   well, if they're smart and you snap them all up,

02:01:09   then all that's left is the dummies, but I don't know.

02:01:11   I'm not calling myself a dummy or you a dummy,

02:01:13   but eventually.

02:01:15   - Eventually, that's all that's left.

02:01:16   I know another good one who left, not for Apple though,

02:01:18   was Ellis Hamburger, who left The Verge for Snapchat.

02:01:23   I guess he's, I don't even know what he's doing.

02:01:25   I guess he's running PR for them or something, but.

02:01:27   - Yeah, I don't know.

02:01:28   I don't know exactly what he's doing, but yeah, he did leave.

02:01:30   I mean, he obviously kind of saw the possibilities

02:01:34   and understood what they were kind of after

02:01:37   a little sooner than a lot of people, I think.

02:01:39   I was nodding along with a lot of stuff

02:01:41   he was writing about them, and they probably were too.

02:01:43   So I think that's probably why they snapped him up,

02:01:46   but yeah, it's definitely a trend, a wider trend.

02:01:50   - Yeah, definitely.

02:01:51   And it's, you know, and again, like you said,

02:01:53   and you're in the hot seat for it,

02:01:55   running TechCrunch is that it's one thing for you to be,

02:02:00   you know, if you're pursuing someone

02:02:02   who you see as a good writer,

02:02:03   it's one thing when you're competing

02:02:06   against other publications with, you know,

02:02:09   roughly in the same business,

02:02:10   and another when you're competing against startups

02:02:14   like Snapchat that have raised millions

02:02:17   and millions of dollars, or a company like Apple

02:02:19   that while we're sitting here talking about it

02:02:21   has made tens of millions of dollars.

02:02:24   - They've made more money than we'll ever make

02:02:25   in our entire lives.

02:02:26   - Right, while we've been talking on this episode.

02:02:29   - Right, exactly.

02:02:30   It is hard, it is hard.

02:02:31   And when we look for,

02:02:33   and obviously every publication has their own

02:02:36   sort of desires at once,

02:02:37   and we'll have different desires than once

02:02:39   for each position that we hire for.

02:02:41   But we generally hire reporters for a very specific reason,

02:02:45   and that's like they're outspoken,

02:02:47   They understand what they think.

02:02:50   They understand their spaces extremely well,

02:02:52   and they want to express them vociferously

02:02:54   in a way that says, "This is what I think."

02:02:57   And that's not the way a lot of other publications work.

02:03:00   They hide behind a lot of editorial layers.

02:03:02   Everything is leached out by the time you read it.

02:03:05   And so you don't know really whether this is the way,

02:03:08   what the writer's thought process was at all.

02:03:11   And because we work that way,

02:03:13   it actually lends itself towards people like Apple

02:03:17   or a startup or a VC firm or somebody like that,

02:03:20   understanding the way that person's brain works more

02:03:23   than say the Wall Street Journal, right?

02:03:25   So I think we are a higher target

02:03:28   for poaching in that regard,

02:03:30   which people get angry about it

02:03:32   and they do talk to us and get a little bit,

02:03:37   they throw a lot of shade, let's put it that way,

02:03:40   because people that work at TechCrunch

02:03:43   maybe go to work at a company after they work here.

02:03:46   For me, like I said, I don't begrudge anybody

02:03:49   the ability to try something new,

02:03:51   and then the second aspect of it is

02:03:53   I view it as a compliment because they don't go work

02:03:55   for other media organizations.

02:03:57   Because I think that they find the work here

02:04:00   has a lot of freedom, they have a lot of flexibility,

02:04:03   they have space to create what they wanna create,

02:04:07   and then if they go somewhere else,

02:04:09   it's like walking back into a cage

02:04:11   and shutting the door behind you.

02:04:13   - I mean this sincerely, not just because you're here

02:04:16   and I'm blowing smoke up your ass,

02:04:18   but TechCrunch is and always has been,

02:04:21   right from when it started, is Mike Arrington's site,

02:04:24   just his own personal site,

02:04:27   but it's always been a site where the bylines mattered

02:04:29   in terms of the writer has a voice,

02:04:31   and I see, I noticed that Drew came back to TechCrunch

02:04:36   because I know his name because he's got a voice,

02:04:40   And all of a sudden I started seeing

02:04:43   by Drew Olenoff again on TechCrunch.

02:04:45   And I, but I noticed that.

02:04:48   There are a lot of sites where the bylines don't matter,

02:04:50   not in terms of credit, but where you just don't,

02:04:54   there is no voice from the writer.

02:04:58   There's no personality in it.

02:04:59   It's just like a generic, watered down house style.

02:05:03   - Right, right, exactly.

02:05:06   And I think that there is plenty of room for that,

02:05:09   especially when it comes to sensitive reporting.

02:05:12   I mean, obviously I'm not gonna have a writer come out

02:05:14   with a bombastic take on something that's very sensitive,

02:05:17   like a founder who commits suicide, for instance,

02:05:21   which we've had happen very, very sadly

02:05:23   a couple of times over the past couple of years.

02:05:25   And so that is not a situation where you're gonna do that.

02:05:28   But by and large, the large majority of tech coverage

02:05:33   is one of two things.

02:05:35   It's either incredibly over the top

02:05:38   and intellectually dishonest, where somebody creates--

02:05:42   - Gawker yesterday published an obituary for iTunes.

02:05:47   - Oh, good, good, excellent.

02:05:49   You know, and I don't begrudge anybody their angle,

02:05:52   but I just find it really hard

02:05:55   to then take them seriously, right?

02:05:57   And so then there's either that

02:06:00   or it is the very dry, distant,

02:06:03   I'm gonna hide behind several layers of editorial

02:06:06   so you don't know whether or not I actually believe this thing.

02:06:10   And my goal is always, if I'm going to hire a writer and if I'm going to tell a writer

02:06:14   like what we do and how I want them to write, the core of it is, do you believe what you're

02:06:19   about to publish?

02:06:21   And if you don't, then go back to the drawing board, rethink it, you know?

02:06:24   It's not about what it looks like or what it feels like or what, you know, people, the

02:06:31   way people take it, you know, if you report on something, you say a certain thing and

02:06:34   and they trash you, that's fine.

02:06:36   It really doesn't matter.

02:06:37   All that matters is do you believe it?

02:06:39   Because in the end, that's why you can go home

02:06:41   and sleep at night and you can wake up tomorrow

02:06:43   and we're both happy and we smile

02:06:45   when we see each other at work.

02:06:46   And we're not all depressed and in our cups

02:06:49   because we're publishing things we don't believe,

02:06:52   or publishing things we don't believe in.

02:06:54   And I think that's the biggest thing.

02:06:56   And that's hard, it's tough,

02:06:57   especially when all this money's at play.

02:06:59   - Well, what about just the simple metric

02:07:01   publish it writing stuff that you wouldn't want to read right that day is

02:07:05   where that's that to me is where you if you're well and you know if you're a

02:07:10   writer a creator if you're creating things that you yourself would not want

02:07:13   to consume that's that to me is when you're miserable I mean that yeah big

02:07:18   warning sign that's death to me and and definitely a warning sign that's your

02:07:25   bout wraps it up should we talk about the only other thing I could think to

02:07:28   talk about would be the two other things I had on my list were apple.com

02:07:33   redesign which I don't know that I have a lot to say about and the other thing

02:07:37   is the Apple music stuff that came out yesterday at EQ and what's his name did

02:07:44   an interview with USA Today yeah even even yeah so they said you know do the

02:07:50   Apple music first so then the news is that they have 11 million subscribers

02:07:55   but everybody is still in the three month free period.

02:08:00   So there's no metrics yet on how many people

02:08:04   are actually paying.

02:08:05   But that seems like a good start.

02:08:08   And there was an acknowledgement of yes,

02:08:11   there's some bugs and it's not working great for everybody

02:08:14   and we're on it.

02:08:14   What I can't make up my mind about,

02:08:19   and I just haven't used a lot.

02:08:22   I don't know.

02:08:23   I'm a grumpy old man and I don't listen to a lot of music.

02:08:26   I've never really listened to it.

02:08:28   I don't listen to music while I work.

02:08:29   Here's the big thing.

02:08:30   I can't write or read while I listen to music.

02:08:33   Or I shouldn't say I can't,

02:08:34   but I find it to be distracting.

02:08:36   I like to write and read in silence.

02:08:39   - I like to write in silence.

02:08:41   I can listen to music while I read,

02:08:44   but yeah, if I'm writing, I'm not like,

02:08:46   "Oh, I'm gonna put headphones on and listen to music."

02:08:50   Unless, and this is like a very precise thing

02:08:53   to digress, I know we're talking about iTunes, but

02:08:56   I just find this, since you brought it up,

02:08:58   every once in a while, I get this idea to write a story and literally the entire

02:09:03   story is already done before I start writing it. And in that case, I play the

02:09:06   music to get me through actually putting it on the page, because it's boring at that point.

02:09:11   Like, you know what I mean? Actually writing it, the writing part is boring,

02:09:15   because you're like, "Ugh,

02:09:16   I've got to put all these words down so other people understand what I'm saying."

02:09:19   You know, and that, then I'll put on some techno and I'll blast through it.

02:09:23   But yeah, but if I'm trying to formulate ideas, I do find it distracting.

02:09:27   Sorry, go ahead.

02:09:28   Yeah, that's a funny way to put it though.

02:09:30   In broad sense, I do find that when I write, there's two types of stories.

02:09:33   There's the one that I already have it and it does seem like it's just drudgery.

02:09:37   Not drudgery, but work.

02:09:40   It feels like work to get it out.

02:09:42   And then there's the kind where I don't know where I'm going and it's actually fun to write

02:09:46   it even though it actually is more work because I actually have to go back and and change it because

02:09:52   the the course of writing it is how I formulate the final idea exactly you teach yourself what

02:10:00   you meant by writing so I at the end of it you're like oh I meant this then I gotta go back in and

02:10:05   readjust so a quick spoiler it's a article I'm writing for during fireball it isn't out yet it

02:10:12   It might be a race against time whether it's out

02:10:15   before this episode of the podcast is out.

02:10:17   But I'm just writing a post that's just,

02:10:19   here's my guessing on what the new iPhone lineup

02:10:22   will look like next month.

02:10:23   And I started it by trying to get to where

02:10:27   Molte and I last week on the show were both thinking

02:10:31   maybe they would do like a four inch iPhone 6C.

02:10:35   Sort of like the internals of the iPod touches

02:10:38   that just came out and the A8 and the four inch size.

02:10:42   And that was what I started writing the article about.

02:10:44   And as I wrote the article, I came to the conclusion

02:10:46   that that's not gonna happen.

02:10:49   - Yeah, I love that though.

02:10:52   - I know.

02:10:53   - That's the great thing, that discovery is fun.

02:10:55   - But I actually had to then go back to the beginning

02:10:57   and rewrite almost everything.

02:10:59   'Cause I started by trying to make the argument

02:11:01   that this is why I think they might do this.

02:11:02   And as I wrote the article, it's like,

02:11:05   by forcing myself to make sentences out of it,

02:11:07   it's like, oh, you know what, that's not gonna happen.

02:11:09   There'd be leaks of the components by now,

02:11:12   and there are no leaks, so it's not gonna happen.

02:11:15   - Well, that's called being intellectually honest, right?

02:11:17   - Right, but it's fun.

02:11:18   - The flip side of that is you try to prove

02:11:21   and you try to stretch the facts and truth

02:11:23   of what you know to be true to fit a narrative

02:11:26   that you had created before you even started.

02:11:28   And so there's that too.

02:11:29   It's fun though.

02:11:30   - So anyway, my daily life, I don't listen to a lot of music.

02:11:36   I work an awful lot if by dicking around on the web and linking to things you can call

02:11:41   at work.

02:11:42   And when I'm doing that, I'm not listening to music.

02:11:44   I'm constantly waiting for somebody to make me go back and dig ditches.

02:11:47   I mean, really, every day I'm like, "Okay, well, when's the time to go back to work?"

02:11:51   So as long as I feel that way, I think we're okay as long as we feel that way.

02:11:55   Anyhow, go ahead.

02:11:56   And then when I'm listening to stuff because I'm bored and I want something to listen to,

02:11:59   it's almost always podcasts.

02:12:01   And so I don't listen to a lot of music.

02:12:03   And so I've played around with Apple Music,

02:12:06   and it works for me, but I don't use it enough

02:12:09   to run into these bugs that people have run into,

02:12:11   so I just don't know.

02:12:12   I don't feel like I'm in a position to judge.

02:12:14   This is where I'm getting at.

02:12:16   Is this a sort of rough 1.0,

02:12:20   and there's some kinks to be worked out,

02:12:21   but they're on track, and yes, it's just bugs.

02:12:24   It's a 1.0, they shipped when they shipped,

02:12:26   and they'll fix it, or is this a disaster,

02:12:29   and they've got a permanent mess on their hands?

02:12:33   I don't know. I see people espousing both opinions.

02:12:37   I mean, like I just joked,

02:12:40   Gizmodo published an obituary for iTunes yesterday.

02:12:45   So I tend to think that's hyperbole,

02:12:48   but I don't know that I've used it enough

02:12:49   to form an opinion on it.

02:12:51   - I mean, I think everybody who's used it

02:12:55   for any period of time understands that iTunes

02:12:58   is not the most well-written piece of software anymore.

02:13:02   And that's no real one person's fault necessarily, although you could probably find

02:13:07   somebody in the chain somewhere who you could

02:13:09   quote-unquote blame.

02:13:10   But I think that it's been asked to do so many different things

02:13:14   by now.

02:13:15   That it's impossible for it to execute on any of them

02:13:18   with any real sense of

02:13:20   of like

02:13:21   competency.

02:13:22   It just does stuff. It doesn't

02:13:25   really do stuff well.

02:13:27   And I think that that is part of what we're running up against here.

02:13:30   when they're smashing Apple Music into iTunes,

02:13:35   which is the argument for separating it, right?

02:13:37   And having an Apple Music app or whatever the case may be,

02:13:40   which I think honestly would lead to more complexity,

02:13:43   so I'm not hugely fond,

02:13:44   but you could easily see a music app and a videos app, right?

02:13:49   And the videos app contains your video library,

02:13:52   just like it does in iOS,

02:13:54   and the music app contained radio and your music

02:13:57   and all that stuff.

02:13:58   and then the stores were then attached to each of them.

02:14:01   You could even look at the apple.com redesign

02:14:03   as a sort of indicator as to the way they think about it.

02:14:06   And right now, your music collection

02:14:09   is separate from the store,

02:14:10   but with Apple Music, it doesn't have to be, right?

02:14:13   It literally is, it could be one unit,

02:14:17   and you could be listening to a song

02:14:19   and add it to your collection,

02:14:20   which is totally possible with Apple Music right now.

02:14:23   So there's just lots of indicators

02:14:24   that a standalone app could really work well

02:14:26   and could mesh better

02:14:28   than it currently does where you switch back and forth. All I know is that

02:14:32   like my movie library is is pretty big

02:14:34   and iTunes handles it incredibly poorly and Apple TV handles it even worse.

02:14:39   Yeah. I have 954 movies.

02:14:42   Wait, how many?

02:14:43   954.

02:14:45   Wow. And they are all bought through iTunes or... Oh, hell no.

02:14:49   No. Good God. No.

02:14:50   Yeah, no. Some of them but you know I think a good portion of them

02:14:54   uh...

02:14:55   maybe 20% are purchased from iTunes,

02:14:59   but a large majority of them are ripped

02:15:02   from Blu-rays, CVDs, other kinds of things.

02:15:05   So they're not the most amazing quality,

02:15:07   but a lot of times, they're good enough for me to watch.

02:15:10   Everyone wants to know a great while when I wanna watch it,

02:15:12   but it's just like I digitized my collection.

02:15:14   That's all I did.

02:15:15   I figured out what worked for me.

02:15:16   - And you keep 'em on a Mac that's on your home network,

02:15:18   and iTunes supposedly can,

02:15:22   through your iTunes, through your iCloud account,

02:15:24   you can see them from your Apple TV.

02:15:27   - Exactly, but on the Apple TV, when you have 954 movies,

02:15:32   the list scrolls for an eternity, right?

02:15:36   It's just a scrollable list.

02:15:37   There's no genre breakdowns.

02:15:39   The metadata's there, but there's no genre breakdowns.

02:15:42   There's no way to even look at them in cover form.

02:15:46   It's literally just an endlessly scrolling list of names.

02:15:49   It's the worst possible interface for a large movie library.

02:15:53   - Yeah, it's not good.

02:15:54   It just sucks. We're I I've out of laziness

02:15:57   I mean, I'd still buy blu-rays for movies that I truly love or expect to love

02:16:02   You know criterion collection. I've got all Kubrick stuff on blu-ray and stuff like that. But right for the most part if it's just regular

02:16:11   Crap, we just pull up by and we're gonna buy it. We buy the iTunes version. So we've got I've figured it

02:16:18   It's like holy cow. That's a lot of money as we've you know, but we've been doing it for years

02:16:22   We've got a like a little over 300 movies that we've bought from iTunes

02:16:25   And on and that's the ones we've that's you know, not rips. These aren't like on a Mac

02:16:31   These are the ones we bought from iTunes, but on Apple TV when you this is the current Apple TV

02:16:37   When you go to all movies, it's like I don't know 10 seconds before the list comes up and before anything comes up

02:16:44   so it's like you almost have to

02:16:47   Like it's easy to get to the one you just the most recent two or three because they're up there at the top in the little

02:16:53   Shortcut section, but if you want to look at a movie that you bought years ago, it's it really stinks

02:17:00   Mm-hmm. Mm-hmm exactly if you if it's something you bought recent

02:17:04   I mean the cycle we go through with my daughter is you know, well, she'll see him

02:17:09   Well, you know, why don't you try this, you know try this movie and she'll hate it, right?

02:17:13   she obviously detests it the first time we watch it.

02:17:15   And then she'll start asking me to watch it again,

02:17:17   and she'll watch it over and over and over again

02:17:18   until we watch something else.

02:17:20   So I recently introduced her to James and the Giant Peach,

02:17:22   and at first she was totally disinterested,

02:17:24   completely no thanks.

02:17:26   But then now she watches it once or twice a day.

02:17:29   And the same thing with Iron Giant,

02:17:32   where those are the movies she alternates between right now.

02:17:35   When previously that it was Monsters, Inc.,

02:17:37   and so on and so forth.

02:17:38   There'll be a thing that she's interested in,

02:17:41   And so when she wants to watch a movie that day, "Okay, what do you want to watch?"

02:17:46   And she'll be like, "Oh, giant."

02:17:50   Well, those are right at the top.

02:17:53   But if it's anything else, it is a drill-down job to get to the rest of it.

02:17:54   Regardless of what your use case is, whether it's just your kid-watched movie or you're a serious movie collector,

02:17:58   I don't think either people are really being serviced well at this point.

02:18:06   And I think that there needs to be a severe revamp there on the Apple TV.

02:18:08   But I think that part of that is in iTunes as well as iTunes at the moment. It's not all that effective either

02:18:15   it's either a list or a list of

02:18:17   Covers that does not scroll. Well, yeah, it scrolls really really poorly. Yeah, so it takes a long time to load. It's

02:18:24   anyway, I

02:18:27   Have a very strong feeling that there will be a new answer to that problem in a month

02:18:32   Mm-hmm. Yeah, I think there has to be I don't I don't really

02:18:38   I'm in the same boat as you as far as Apple music goes like I don't have a

02:18:42   Really comprehensive list of my gripes or anything like that because I use it really casually, you know

02:18:49   I have a music library

02:18:50   But most of my music library is classic rock because I that's when I was buying a lot of music on CDs and rip them

02:18:57   I was buying a lot of classic rock and my musical taste had changed significantly

02:19:01   I think the last three albums I bought were like

02:19:03   Mumford and Sons, Brandon Flowers' new album, and the Kung Fury soundtrack. So like, I'm all over the map now,

02:19:09   but I very rarely go through my music library and play stuff anymore. I generally pop on RDO and then

02:19:17   just listen to the popular stuff, right? Like, what's new? What's interesting? So I can discover

02:19:22   new people and go like, "Oh, I like, you know, Wale," or "I like, you know, Matt and Kim," or "I like

02:19:28   whatever these new, you know, Walter Sobchak," or some new artists that I am pretty excited

02:19:32   about now. And so that discovery aspect of things is serviced fine for me by clicking

02:19:37   on the radio tab and just letting it play. Or going to the "for new" tab and just clicking

02:19:43   on something. So for me, I'm pretty easy. So I'm not the right person to be all critical

02:19:48   about it. Because I'm an easy pleaser.

02:19:55   That's the first thing that comes to mind when I think of you, Matthew. Easy pleaser.

02:20:00   In this one small, narrow niche I am.

02:20:03   Yeah.

02:20:04   What do you think about the new Apple.com?

02:20:06   Maybe we can wrap it up.

02:20:08   Yeah, yeah.

02:20:09   Okay, so I think it's good.

02:20:10   I mean, I don't, like you, I don't have a whole lot to say about it.

02:20:13   I mean, I think it is, it's going to be a nice statement for anybody that has a separate

02:20:20   store to get over it and to integrate their exploration, curation, and store all into

02:20:27   one.

02:20:28   to have this whole showroom mentality.

02:20:31   I think you put it that way in your--

02:20:33   - Yeah. - Yeah.

02:20:34   But I think that's accurate.

02:20:36   - I think that the reason though,

02:20:38   it was more of an engineering issue

02:20:44   than a decision that that's the way they should do it, right?

02:20:48   It was, it just sort of evolved that way

02:20:51   and that they had this convoluted web object system

02:20:54   that they wrote in house for the store

02:20:56   that did a lot of cool things

02:20:58   and couldn't be easily replaced,

02:21:00   but it also had a lot of problems.

02:21:01   And so, to me, the most interesting thing

02:21:03   we could talk about, and a lot of people have asked,

02:21:05   so I feel like if we don't, it's the one thing I know

02:21:07   we almost have to talk about,

02:21:08   is are they still gonna take the store down

02:21:11   when they have a press event?

02:21:13   And long story short, the deal is that that started

02:21:18   because technically they had to take the store down

02:21:22   for hours to make certain,

02:21:25   there were certain types of changes

02:21:26   that had involved taking the entire store down for hours.

02:21:29   And part of it was the way that there are different stores

02:21:32   around the world for different currencies

02:21:34   and stuff like that.

02:21:35   And part of it was just the way that it was made.

02:21:39   And that explains why there are times,

02:21:43   there's almost like a bat signal,

02:21:44   like the Apple store is down.

02:21:46   If it's down the morning of WWDC's keynote,

02:21:50   or if-- - New products.

02:21:51   - Right, or if it's down next September,

02:21:54   I don't know what date is the consensus guess

02:21:57   for when the event's gonna be, I don't know,

02:22:01   looking at my calendar, I'm thinking maybe September 14th

02:22:04   or something, September 14th, September 15th.

02:22:08   But if the press events go out, or invites go out

02:22:11   the week before and the store goes down that morning,

02:22:14   well yeah, everybody knows that.

02:22:15   But there were times for years where on a random Wednesday,

02:22:19   the Apple store goes down for an hour

02:22:21   people get excited and you know what's going on and then it comes back up and it was nothing

02:22:26   right so right my understanding is that those days are over like the new

02:22:32   engineering that's going on here is they're not going to have to take the store down

02:22:35   for just just because they have to but my guess is they'll still do something like that because

02:22:44   i it evolved into a way to make people excited you know it builds anticipation and quite frankly

02:22:51   If they're announcing new iPhones this morning, they don't want you to buy an old iPhone.

02:22:57   You know what I mean?

02:22:58   Because they know you're going to send it, you're going to be mad and they're going to

02:23:00   have to cancel your order and send it back anyway.

02:23:03   Yeah.

02:23:04   So maybe they just turn off the buy button.

02:23:06   Right.

02:23:07   I mean, I think that there...

02:23:09   I asked about this and got no comment, but about the whole, "Will the website come down

02:23:15   now?"

02:23:16   And got no comment from them.

02:23:18   But if you look at the way that the switch went, they did it in like 40 countries, like

02:23:25   40 different stores, and they did it seamlessly.

02:23:28   I actually saw somebody was even browsing the site and it changed on them as they clicked

02:23:33   from one section to another.

02:23:35   So whether that translates forward into them being able to do whatever they want without

02:23:40   having to take everything down, I don't know.

02:23:43   But it's an interesting indicator, a leading indicator of maybe the way it works differently

02:23:48   now than it did before and one of the reasons that they did all that engineering behind

02:23:52   the scenes.

02:23:53   I mean, I'd be really surprised if it's still random Web objects, although it may.

02:23:57   I don't think so.

02:23:58   And it seems, based on my Twitter, it's hard to tell from the outside, but it's clearly

02:24:02   not Web objects that's directly talking to the browser.

02:24:05   There's some kind of Apache front end now.

02:24:07   And now that could be some kind of load balancer or something in front of Web objects, but

02:24:11   it doesn't seem like it.

02:24:12   And I said that it felt faster, but I don't know, maybe it's that, what do they call it,

02:24:17   new and shiny placebo effect, but a bunch of other people on Twitter said, "No, it's

02:24:21   not just you, it's definitely faster." So that makes me think it's not WebObjects anymore.

02:24:28   And if it is WebObjects, it's well hidden behind a faster, much better looking.

02:24:34   Yeah.

02:24:35   Well, anyway, that's the news of the week. Anything else that you wanted to talk about?

02:24:41   Have I lost you? I've probably lost you.

02:24:44   Okay, clear again. Skype is the worst.

02:24:48   You know what's funny? I don't pay for it. I guess maybe if I could they'd go away. But

02:24:53   you launch Skype now and it gives you a list of things you can do. And my list of suggested

02:24:58   things to do was one, upgrade to Windows 10, and two, take a depression test.

02:25:06   That's literally what it says in the main Skype window when I launch Skype. One, things

02:25:11   to do today. And I can't help but think that they're related. Right, exactly. It must be

02:25:18   related. It's either that or using Skype is related to depression. Anyway, anyway, you've

02:25:25   been extraordinarily gracious with your time and that was a great conversation. Matthew

02:25:29   Panzareno, people can read your work at techcrunch.com where you are, your title is, are you editor

02:25:36   and chief are you what's your title yeah which is well-deserved and you're doing

02:25:42   it a very good job there so you and on Twitter they can see your very fine

02:25:48   tweets at at Panzer pan z er I'll tell you I'm when I was trying to look you up

02:25:55   on Skype I typed in Panzer and it didn't work and I was very upset yeah I when I

02:26:00   introduced people people introduce me as panzer now which is I just let it ride

02:26:04   Yeah, well, it's a good name to own. It sounds cool. Anyway, I thank you for your time and talk

02:26:12   to you soon. Thank you, sir. Have a good one.

02:26:14   [ Silence ]