351: The Floor Is High


00:00:00   My voice is giving out, it's like the beginning of winter sickness season.

00:00:03   And so I've had a slight cold for about a week and a half, and I've been managing so far, but I'm worried like, I'm starting to sound worse, slowly.

00:00:15   I don't think it was, I was sitting bowling for soup in the car today. I think it's actually the cold catching up with me, but we'll see what happens. Sorry.

00:00:22   I feel like you are constantly lightly sick. Well, he's got a kid, a young kid, and so do you, so you should also be constantly lightly sick.

00:00:30   No, I'm healthy as a mule or something. I'm not sick all summer. All summer, I'm great. It's one of the reasons why I love summer and why I don't like the rest of the year.

00:00:39   It's one of the big ones, because the rest of the year, I'm pretty much always either getting sick, sick, or was just sick. Delightful.

00:00:47   We'll see once Adam gets old enough not to be entirely covered with the boogers of the other people in school if this stops.

00:00:53   Then we'll know whether it's you or the kid, because I remember getting sick way more when my kids were younger too, but I do less now.

00:00:59   Yeah, I think it matters a lot. Like right now, not only is he just only in second grade, but even if his age group starts developing basic hygiene skills,

00:01:11   they all still have a lot of younger siblings who are still in preschool or kindergarten, so they're all in the same house together.

00:01:18   I feel like until probably middle school, this is going to keep happening.

00:01:24   Have you had a lice outbreak yet?

00:01:27   Surprisingly not. We've dodged that one so far. They do get lice here and there in this area. It just hasn't hit us yet.

00:01:34   It amazed me. We used to do lice checks at school all the time in elementary school, and I never got it.

00:01:41   I figured lice is the thing they check for, and they have to check for it, and when anybody gets into school, they've got to check the whole school,

00:01:46   and you all go down to the nurse, and you wait in the big line, and you go through.

00:01:49   I'd never seen it. I never knew anybody who had it. It was just a thing that we did.

00:01:54   I got kids, and I got lice everywhere.

00:01:57   Just delightful.

00:01:59   Constant lice.

00:02:01   Anyway, we should start with some follow-up, and we should remind you that the ATP Holiday Store is open for business ladies and gentlemen.

00:02:09   ATP.fm/store. You can get your six-color shirts in light or dark modes.

00:02:15   You can get your old-school ATP logo shirt, your hoodie, your hat, your pins. It's all there for the taking.

00:02:21   So please, don't be that person that listens to me and says, "Oh, yeah, I'll remember. I'll do it later. I'll do it later."

00:02:27   Don't be that person. Every single time, at least one, usually a handful of people, says, "I forgot."

00:02:35   "Oh, no, can you bring it back? Can you bring it back? I forgot."

00:02:37   No, we can't bring it back. I'm sorry. We can't. Go now.

00:02:40   ATP.fm/store. You'll be glad you did.

00:02:43   The sale is available, or the stuff is available until Sunday, November 17, ATP time.

00:02:49   Please go. ATP.fm/store, and get yourself some sweet, sweet, sweet ATP merch.

00:02:55   Moving on, Marco, you have had AirPod Pros for what, like a week now, week and a half?

00:03:00   It's AirPods Pro, Casey.

00:03:02   Oh, God. I'm so sorry. I know we talked about it last week, but now that you're a week and change on, are you still enjoying them?

00:03:09   Is this kind of like the Apple Watch, where you flirt with it and then put it away for a year? What's going on?

00:03:14   As of last episode, I think I had spent only a couple of hours with them so far, just walking around my house, basically.

00:03:19   Since then, I've done a number of dog walks with them. I have not taken a plane, but I have taken two ferry rides with them.

00:03:26   And the dog walks also have tested the noise cancellation because it is leaf-blowing and lawn-mowing season.

00:03:35   It is, as we record this, early November, and this is one of the few times of year where people in my town are allowed to use leaf blowers.

00:03:43   And boy, do they, constantly.

00:03:46   And so, normally, it's the kind of situation where I'm walking my dog, I have some kind of small portable headphones on,

00:03:52   and they never isolate that well, and many times I actually don't want them to. I often wear aftershocks for that purpose.

00:03:57   And so, normally, if I'm walking by something very loud like a lawnmower or a leaf blower, I just have to pause the podcast as I walk by,

00:04:05   because I'm just not going to hear what's being said.

00:04:07   With the AirPods Pro, I use the long hold gesture on the stick to enable noise cancellation as I walk by something loud like that.

00:04:15   And it works, and I'm able to keep the podcast playing. Now, I don't even need to turn it up.

00:04:21   I can leave it exactly at the regular, normal volume I had it, add the noise cancellation, and it works very, very well.

00:04:28   You still hear the leaf blower, but it takes it down a significant volume.

00:04:33   The noise cancellation, I think I underrated last episode, because I had it brought into a super loud environment.

00:04:40   I was only playing with around the house.

00:04:42   So, I would say last episode, I overstated how good the sound quality was.

00:04:49   They still do sound good, but I am missing a lot of that treble detail, and so I still stand by my statement that they sound better than anything Bose has ever made,

00:04:59   better than any earbuds I've ever tried, and better than many regular headphones I've tried.

00:05:03   They are still, they are great for earbuds, they are good for headphones, but they are not great for headphones.

00:05:10   But still, considering their size, and their portability, and their features, and frankly their price,

00:05:17   good in-ear monitors, which these aren't even in-ear monitors physically, but good in-ear monitors that can sound better than this,

00:05:24   tend to cost more than $250, and that's even for the basic wired kind.

00:05:29   This has all the wireless stuff and everything, and it's Apple, and it has all the features, so for what these are,

00:05:35   for the value they provide, for the quality they provide, the balance they provide, the sound quality really is remarkable.

00:05:42   I would like a basic EQ, even if it's as simple as a bass and treble slider.

00:05:49   Even that, a two slider screen, would be great, and all their competitors do this now.

00:05:55   Sony has it, Bose has it, all the other headphone makers have added EQs in their apps in recent years.

00:06:01   I just hope Apple gets around to that. I know it's against their style to offer control over things,

00:06:07   but maybe this would be something that would be worth it, I think, because I want the same thing for the HomePod.

00:06:13   The HomePod, I now have, I don't know, 15 of them, whatever I have in my house, I have a lot of HomePods,

00:06:19   they're in lots of rooms now, and I would like to have a treble and bass slider on those.

00:06:25   Mostly the bass slider, actually, I turned it down in the bathroom, but a small amount of control would go a long way here.

00:06:32   But otherwise, though, again, the sound is very good for what they are, it's great for what they are, it's very good in absolute terms.

00:06:41   And so I would say the noise cancellation is significantly better than I thought it was.

00:06:47   I haven't had a chance to take them on a plane yet, but I've already decided that the next time I fly anywhere,

00:06:53   I'm going to take only the AirPods Pro and see how it is, and actually try it, and not take my big Sony-junk-my-boses.

00:06:59   How do you do with comfort? Because if I recall correctly, and feel free to correct me,

00:07:04   you can wear the traditional non-pro AirPods for, I don't know, like half an hour, an hour, I think you said,

00:07:10   before they get deeply uncomfortable, and now with the AirPods Pro, have you done any extended listening with them?

00:07:15   Is that better, worse, different, the same, etc.?

00:07:18   As long as I can go without discomfort on regular AirPods, it's about 20 minutes. With the Pros, I have gone an hour straight so far,

00:07:26   and there's no discomfort at all.

00:07:28   Oh, wow, okay, so that's a pretty big improvement. And what size tips are you wearing, just out of curiosity?

00:07:32   Not that it really matters, but...

00:07:33   The default ones, the mediums that come on them. And I haven't even tried the other ones, because the mediums,

00:07:39   they pass the ear fit test, they feel good to me, they sound good to me, so I'm like, "Alright, I'm not going to mess with it."

00:07:45   So far, I have not worn them for long enough to reach a point of discomfort, and I've worn them for about an hour

00:07:52   numerous times, so I know it isn't just like a little fluke thing. I've also worn them in numerous different temperatures,

00:07:58   like I've worn them when I was hot and when I was cold, and they fit differently in each condition.

00:08:03   Like when I'm cold, they fit a little bit looser, they feel like they might slide out, although they haven't yet,

00:08:09   I haven't budged, so I don't know. But anyway, yeah, so far so good. I continue to be extremely pleased with them.

00:08:16   The controls are fine, I still do miss having a volume control, like any other headphone I've ever tried,

00:08:23   there's a volume control on the headphone, I know this is not new to AirPods people, but not having volume on there

00:08:28   is really annoying. I understand why it's not there, like I think it would be difficult to wedge it in there somewhere,

00:08:33   but regardless, it is not there. And they did make the sticks smaller compared to the original AirPods,

00:08:40   to the point where like I can put on or take off a sweatshirt and not knock them out of my ears.

00:08:45   So like I do appreciate how small they are.

00:08:47   - Oh, that is nice.

00:08:48   - Yeah, and so like I recognize that part of why I don't have volume control is that they're so small,

00:08:53   and it is nice being so small. I will say I don't give a crap what they look like, and to a large degree,

00:08:59   I don't know what they look like, because I never see them. If I'm using them, I can't see them.

00:09:04   If I'm not using them, they're in the case. And they're in my fingers for such a brief time on the transition,

00:09:10   either way, if you asked me to draw them, I wouldn't be able to. I don't know what they look like.

00:09:14   (laughs)

00:09:15   - Well, it is We Draw Wednesday.

00:09:17   - Yes, I know.

00:09:18   - So speaking of Tiff, did she get a pair? And I don't recall what her perspective on regular AirPods were.

00:09:24   So did she get a pair of the Pros?

00:09:26   - Not yet, only merely because we've been busy and she has no problems with the regular ones,

00:09:32   but that is on the list of things to consider.

00:09:35   - And John, none of these have entered your house yet, is that correct?

00:09:38   - No, there's been some interest perhaps for the holidays, but I'm still just taking a wait and see attitude.

00:09:44   - I mean, they're really good.

00:09:46   - Everyone I've spoken to says they're the AirPods, but better, and I friggin' love my AirPods.

00:09:51   So this sounds like it has Casey written all over it, but I just bought AirPods when the Qi ones came out,

00:09:57   and I just feel guilty 'cause Aaron doesn't really have any interest in taking mine.

00:10:01   And I mean, obviously, as we discussed yesterday, or not yesterday, I'm sorry, last week,

00:10:05   reselling them seems a little weird.

00:10:08   - Yeah, it's a little weird.

00:10:10   - I don't know, it just seems so wasteful to get rid of or stop using my perfectly good non-Pro AirPods,

00:10:17   my amateur AirPods, just to get these Pros or the Pro, whatever, I don't care.

00:10:24   - Those are your nieces or nephews? I forget.

00:10:27   - Actually, as of today, I have a brand new one.

00:10:29   - There you go. Infants love AirPods.

00:10:32   - Yeah, why not?

00:10:33   - Here, kids, want some of Uncle Casey's earwax?

00:10:35   - Yeah, exactly, it's gross.

00:10:37   - Can you repurpose them to maybe be used at a dedicated location in your house?

00:10:41   So for instance, to have one next to your bed for bedtime listening,

00:10:45   or to leave a pair always next to the TV station, next to the couch for TV watching.

00:10:50   - Day AirPods and night AirPods.

00:10:52   - God damn it, John, you beat me to it.

00:10:54   - Well, that's 'cause I'm always on offense, Casey.

00:10:57   (laughter)

00:10:59   - Now that is well done. I have to bow to that one, that was well done.

00:11:03   But I don't know, I mean, this is like the first worldiest, first world problem, right?

00:11:07   "Oh, I really want the new AirPods and my current ones don't suck, what am I gonna do?"

00:11:11   You know, like, it's a terrible thing to even talk about, so I should just move on.

00:11:16   But I do want them, maybe they'll end up on a Christmas or Hanukkah list,

00:11:19   just in case someone's feeling particularly generous, but we'll see what happens.

00:11:22   - I still feel like they're not regular AirPods, but better,

00:11:25   because they're fundamentally different.

00:11:27   These go into your ears and the other ones don't.

00:11:29   Like, they don't go super into your ears, they're not in ear, but that's a pretty big difference.

00:11:34   So if that difference, you know, if the expectation was,

00:11:37   "These are just like my old AirPods, but just they sound better and have notes canceling,"

00:11:40   not true at all, like they go in your ear differently, right?

00:11:43   And so that's my main trepidation.

00:11:45   Now, if you've used AirPods like that before, earbuds, whatever the hell the generic term is,

00:11:49   like that before, and they're fine, well then you're fine.

00:11:52   But if not, like, again, it gets into my whole thing of like trying them on,

00:11:56   or trying somebody else's and wiping them off,

00:11:58   like you do have to figure out whether you're okay with anything going in your ear canal.

00:12:02   And then you have to find out, are you okay with this specific thing going in your ear canal?

00:12:07   No, that's totally fair. When I said they're like AirPods, but better,

00:12:10   all I meant was if you take all of the things that I like about AirPods,

00:12:14   from everything I've understood, the AirPods Pro, you know, fitment and whatnot aside,

00:12:19   everything seems to be better. You know, it has noise canceling.

00:12:23   The battery life is roughly the same. Even with the noise canceling, they're smaller.

00:12:28   You know, all of the features seem to be the same, if not better.

00:12:33   Except for the tapping is another one.

00:12:35   I saw a couple of people who said they preferred the tapping to the squeezing.

00:12:37   Obviously I've heard lots of people on the opposite as well.

00:12:39   It could just be what you're used to, but you know, that is another difference.

00:12:42   Like, at its mark upon an ally's week, you don't have the option to do the tapping anymore.

00:12:45   So you're going to be squeezing.

00:12:47   Yeah. All right, speaking of the AirPods Pro, there's some interesting news with regard to the battery,

00:12:52   thanks to iFixit. Apparently they're using a particularly large to my eye,

00:12:58   but otherwise basically standard button cell battery, like you would see in a watch.

00:13:03   I guess not the kind of watch that Marco uses because you're too cool for those,

00:13:06   but the kind of watch that I would use for the Apple Watch, it's just kind of like a watch battery,

00:13:11   which is fairly surprising, isn't it?

00:13:14   It's watch battery shaped, but it is still a lithium battery and a different voltage and everything.

00:13:19   Like, you can't replace it like a watch battery. Also, you can't really get to it.

00:13:23   It's cylindrical, though, but like in a flat pizza shape like a watch battery is.

00:13:28   And more importantly, it's not in the stick.

00:13:30   So one of the reasons the stick is so small is because there's no battery in there.

00:13:34   So they put it elsewhere. They put it in the chunky body part.

00:13:37   Yeah, like what's interesting to me about this is that the interior layout of the AirPods Pro

00:13:43   is completely different than the regular AirPods.

00:13:46   Like it isn't just like a simple evolution of the same design. Like it's a total internal rearrangement.

00:13:51   All right, moving right along. Tell me about the charging light.

00:13:56   This is something I've noticed with my Qi-enabled AirPods, I guess it kind of AirPods 2, whatever you want to call them,

00:14:02   that when you sit it on the mat, on the Qi charging mat, it'll light up on the exterior,

00:14:06   as opposed to my original AirPods, which had the light on the interior.

00:14:10   It'll light up on the exterior and show you kind of what the situation is,

00:14:13   and then after a few seconds it goes out.

00:14:14   And the only way to get it back is to take it off the charger and put it back on

00:14:18   and see if it turns from, say, amber to green or what have you.

00:14:21   But apparently that's not the same on the AirPods Pro. What's going on here, Jon?

00:14:25   Yeah, this is partially spawned from the iFixit teardown,

00:14:29   when they found this thing inside the case and they weren't sure what it was,

00:14:32   and it looked like it was a microphone or something.

00:14:34   But whatever it is, that's probably the hardware mechanism that allows the case to know when you tap it.

00:14:40   It's probably either some kind of mic or vibration sensor, basically,

00:14:43   boils down to the same thing when it's embedded inside the case.

00:14:45   So if you want to see the charge state of your AirPods Pro case, just tap it,

00:14:50   and the light will go on again and you can see what color it is.

00:14:53   Maybe that will work on the upcoming 16-inch MacBook Pros as well.

00:14:57   If you're wondering how much charge is left in it and it's sitting there, you can tap it.

00:15:00   And then I guess, I don't know, lights will shine through laser-etched holes in the aluminum that are invisible otherwise. I don't know.

00:15:07   One thing that's disappointing, though, is that this doesn't work when you're charging it through a cable.

00:15:10   Yeah, it's only on the mat.

00:15:12   Oh, interesting.

00:15:13   When you're charging through a cable, you have to open the lid slightly and then close it to get it to show whether the light's green or orange.

00:15:19   Which is weird because the sensor for sensing tapping, that doesn't care whether it's on a mat or not.

00:15:25   I don't quite know why that feature isn't always available.

00:15:29   Yeah, it's weird.

00:15:30   And then John's favorite subject, the case jiggle click. Does it exist in the AirPods Pro, John?

00:15:35   Let's see.

00:15:36   I meant to ask about that on the show when Marco first got his.

00:15:41   I've heard lots of reports from people, and here's the thing.

00:15:44   With the revised AirPods, whatever we call them, the AirPods Series 2, not the Pros but the ones that I have in that case he has,

00:15:53   that's the one where I first noticed the side-to-side thing, but some people got those AirPods and their case doesn't do that.

00:16:00   So it's like a manufacturing variability thing. So they don't all do it on the old one.

00:16:05   So I have heard from at least one or two people who say their AirPods Pro case goes side-to-side, and it sounds like Marco yours does as well.

00:16:12   It's very subtle.

00:16:14   I can hear it a little bit.

00:16:17   It's very, very little.

00:16:18   I still feel like it is much more prevalent on the second generation AirPods than it was on the first.

00:16:24   I don't know how prevalent it is on the Pros, but so far I haven't heard from anybody with Pros whose case doesn't do that.

00:16:30   All righty. And then Kieran Sr. says, "Pro tips for the AirPods Pro.

00:16:35   Instead of long squeezing then squeezing once to pause and enable transparency when someone talks to you,

00:16:40   just create a shortcut named 'be quiet'. So then 'Hey Dingus, be quiet' will allow you to hear."

00:16:47   That is very clever, but I can't imagine somebody walking up to me and saying, "Hey Dingus, be quiet."

00:16:52   It's like when I was talking about the ear tapping. When I tap the things on my ear and people think I was pointing to them going,

00:16:57   "Uh, I'm listening to music and you're being so rude."

00:17:00   Can you imagine trying to say an activation phrase?

00:17:03   They're never going to hear the "Hey Dingus."

00:17:05   They're going to think they walked up to talk to you and you just turned to them immediately and said, "Be quiet."

00:17:09   Yeah, exactly. Also, who are these people who Siri works that quickly for?

00:17:14   Yeah, I don't know. They have very patient people asking to talk to them.

00:17:18   I've tried using Siri for volume control and stuff like that. It's just too slow.

00:17:22   I'd rather you take my phone out because you'll say, "Hey thing, volume up" or whatever and wait, wait, delay, and then it goes up.

00:17:32   And then your music might resume or might not. It bothers me.

00:17:35   It's the same thing with the fast forward and rewind and stuff. It's the same thing. It's just so painful.

00:17:39   You might as well just for me even just to walk over to the other room and do it.

00:17:42   Yeah. I don't like using Siri for anything that requires quick interactiveness like media control, frankly.

00:17:51   If I want to ask it a question or have it send a message or something, fine. I'm glad it's there.

00:17:55   But I don't see any use for it for media controls.

00:17:58   Yeah. And as we pointed out last time this came up, the most expedient and safest way to deal with this is to reach up and pull the thing out of your ear,

00:18:05   which will pause the music or whatever you're listening to and also is the least likely to be interpreted by the person trying to talk to you as something rude.

00:18:14   And as I noted on Twitter the other day, a neat little touch is that if you're in noise canceling mode but you pull one ear bud out,

00:18:21   it pauses the music and it turns the other ear bud into transparency mode.

00:18:25   So you can hear the people around you more easily when you pull it out and then you put it back in. It puts noise canceling back on.

00:18:31   Super nice. And actually if you want to have like one ear noise canceling, there's an accessibility option to disable that behavior basically

00:18:40   and allow it to have like split noise canceling in just one ear. But by default, it transparency-izes the other ear, which is really nice.

00:18:50   That's very cool. Last week we talked on the show about hearing aids and things of that nature and apparently the FDA has cleared the way for over-the-counter hearing aids,

00:19:02   which I think Jon is going to make you very excited, not because you need them but because this is something you've been thinking about a lot lately.

00:19:07   Yeah, this seems like some deregulation of the hearing aid market where previously to get one you had to consult with a doctor and they were expensive.

00:19:17   The thing that came to mind for whatever reason probably because I have school-aged kids is like the TI-84 calculators or whatever. Do you remember those when you were in school?

00:19:26   Oh yeah.

00:19:27   They still sell those and they still cost like $100 and something and they must cost like 50 cents to make because the stuff that's in them has not changed since we were kids and they're still like $100 and something.

00:19:37   It's a pretty big disconnection. The price is held aloft by schools asking the students to buy it and you induce demand from saying you have to get this for your kid.

00:19:47   Anyway, it's slightly different in the hearing aid market. But this is a nice timing coincidence for Apple to potentially get into the market because Apple would probably not want to deal with all the regulatory stuff

00:20:00   and they're not going to sell a lot of anything that you have to go to talk to your doctor about first. I think there have always been over-the-counter things that you can get but like real proper hearing aids that serious people buy when they actually need it

00:20:13   are going to get in the coming year in the US much easier to buy without having to consult with medical professionals. This according to AARP magazine and they should know.

00:20:24   So just for anyone who's not American, FDA Food and Drug Administration which regulates this sort of thing and AARP American Associated of Retired Persons. I think this is often called pensioners in the UK if I'm not mistaken.

00:20:36   Basically someone who is done with work and usually like in the 60s to 70 year old range.

00:20:41   And it's what makes you start feeling really old when you start getting the solicitations by mail from AARP and you're like, "Oh no."

00:20:49   Also, Ryan Budish wrote to us or to you John the following, "I wear hearing aids and I think you gave them short shrift on ATP. High-end aids have multiple microphones, do lots of specialized processing, have modes for all kinds of challenging situations and can cost over 10 times more than the AirPods Pro. Any retort, John?"

00:21:07   Yeah, so that cost thing is kind of what we're getting at with the calculator. They are very expensive both because the most advanced ones probably contain much more expensive technology than AirPods but also because their prices are officially inflated by the weird supply demand medical establishment stuff that goes into them.

00:21:26   I did hear from a lot of other people who said that they use hearing aids and thought that Apple could definitely do some great things here but from all the feedback I've been getting, I feel like, and I kind of felt like this last week as well, that the place where Apple can innovate in this space is kind of where they usually do.

00:21:42   We think of them as being the high-end brand or the fancy brand but there's high-end brands and then there's Pagani. There's a separate tier for the real high-end or probably in watches, Marco could give better examples.

00:22:01   So BMW is a high-end thing but it's not the same as Ferrari and it's also not the same as one of those boutique brands. What's the? Konaseg? Anyway, so I feel like there's that same hierarchy here.

00:22:14   And so where I would expect Apple to make an impact is by fielding a good hearing aid type device over the counter that sells into basically the low end of the market because as high as it would be priced, it would still be priced way less than the TI-84 of hearing aids, right?

00:22:33   Because they would sell it at Apple prices which are still better than totally lopsided market caused by your need to see a doctor and a limited number of devices that are approved, yada yada, right?

00:22:46   So I think even though they'd be selling things for more than the AirPods, I don't think Apple would ever come out with a $5,000 hearing aid. They would come out with a $500 one and that would still be a rupture to the market because that $500 one might have most or all of the features of the $5,000 ones that are there today.

00:23:02   So I'm still not sure Apple wants to get into this market but I feel like they are right on the doorstep and it's there and it has a good synergy with their watch and health strategy.

00:23:12   And with the over-the-counter FDA clearances and everything, they don't need to commit too much to it. They can basically say, "Look, here's a device that we sell and it has a bunch of functions that everybody can use and also it can function as a pretty decent hearing aid."

00:23:27   And it's the same hardware and it's just a little bit of a change in software.

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00:25:14   Alright, moving on from AirPods Corner to MacBook Pro Corner. Is there more space between the keys in the new MacBook Pro?

00:25:24   I was trying to eyeball it last week and I was like, "I can't tell in these pictures."

00:25:28   And I'm looking at the actual 2017 MacBook Pro that's sitting right at my desk.

00:25:33   And I'm looking at the picture. Then I'm looking at my desk. And I'm looking at the picture.

00:25:36   And I'm like, "I can't." That's what I was doing last week. You hear me on that thing. I'm like, "They look about the same."

00:25:41   But someone did what I should have done, which is take two images of the supposed image of the 16-inch and then the image of the 15-inch,

00:25:49   put them on top of each other, and then make an animated GIF that switches from 15 to 16 and 15 to 16.

00:25:55   You can see that link in the show notes. It is from a MacRumors tweet.

00:25:59   And I have to say, I think the space between the keys is slightly bigger on the 16-inch.

00:26:05   I agree. I didn't think so when I saw the pictures individually.

00:26:09   But once you see this GIF looping them back and forth, I think it is slightly increased spacing, which, again, I welcome, because I think it needs that for accuracy.

00:26:18   This is like a millimeter, though.

00:26:20   It might be an optical illusion.

00:26:22   That's the thing. It could be a difference of shading.

00:26:25   Once Marco buys his, he needs to get some micrometers out and just find out.

00:26:28   You know I will.

00:26:29   Yeah. I mean, like the same way we discovered that the bottom row of keys shrunk when the butterfly keyboard came out.

00:26:34   Exactly.

00:26:35   Stay tuned for America's favorite key-measuring podcast.

00:26:38   [Laughter]

00:26:42   And then, more suggestions for inverted-T arrow keys on the new MacBook Pro.

00:26:47   People are starting to wonder, maybe we are getting the inverted-T back.

00:26:51   Why are we thinking that today?

00:26:53   This is back to that sort of iconic image that we talked about, where they have a picture that shows you your model of computer that they use as sort of a big icon in various parts in the UI.

00:27:02   We talked about that a couple episodes ago.

00:27:05   And now there's like a zoomed-in sort of Zapruder version of this thing saying, look, if you compare the left lower edge of the keyboard on this icon to the right lower edge, it's clear that they're trying to indicate that that key that's in the right lower corner is not as wide as the left lower corner, which implies an inverted-T.

00:27:24   So, again, I invite you to look at the picture that we will put in the show notes.

00:27:27   This is utterly preposterous.

00:27:29   I find it vaguely convincing. I mean, it doesn't make any sense.

00:27:34   It took me a while to even see it.

00:27:35   Yeah, it's there. We also saw the picture. I think Marco poo-pooed this on Twitter. Someone actually posted a top view picture showing the inverted-T clearly, but it didn't seem like it.

00:27:45   Well, that was fake, though.

00:27:46   It's inauthentic. But this, I feel like—and I have to say that I didn't actually confirm this, but it's the type of thing—we have that image from Catalina that we could all go to our own Catalina machines and extract ourselves to confirm that, yeah, this really is an image from Catalina.

00:28:00   And I'm assuming if you zoom in on it, you'll see exactly what they show in this picture.

00:28:04   There's a pixel difference. There's one pixel difference.

00:28:07   I'm willing to believe in the inverted-T a little bit, maybe.

00:28:11   I hope so.

00:28:13   This image is not so convincing that I want to get my hopes up about it. I really, really want there to be inverted-T again.

00:28:23   Between that and the key switch going back to scissor and the slightly smaller key widths, I think that would be amazing, but I just don't want to get my hopes up.

00:28:35   We've been burned so many times by hoping for these laptops to get better, and then every year they just don't, that I really am afraid.

00:28:46   I'm kind of like gun-shy to even get my hopes up about them getting better.

00:28:50   This is stupid. I had a dream last night about these laptops, and I know people's dreams are stupid, but like—

00:28:57   Were there more ports?

00:28:58   There were fewer ports.

00:29:00   Oh, my God, this is a nightmare.

00:29:02   Yeah, there was one USB-C port and one A and one Kensington lock hole.

00:29:09   It was like your laptop, but it wasn't your laptop.

00:29:13   I would take one C and one A, thank you very much. That is a dream for me.

00:29:18   This is how much I have tension about these laptops coming out and being even worse or disappointing in some way.

00:29:29   I hope they come out soon. I still think they will.

00:29:33   Again, these resources are in this build of the OS for a reason.

00:29:37   They wouldn't put these resources in Catalina.1 if these machines weren't coming out until next year.

00:29:43   I still think they are imminent.

00:29:46   I just want it to come out so we can finally see it and finally end this tension and get back to our usual expertise of complaining about whatever they didn't do.

00:29:55   You know, it's funny to me. I think it was David Hanemeyer Hansen had something go around the internets over the last week or two where he had tried a Windows machine, like a Surface something or other, for a week and decided he couldn't do it.

00:30:08   And on the one side, I think it's really kind of preposterous that people are that upset about the keyboards that they're turning to an entirely different platform because they think that's better.

00:30:19   But on the flip side of that, I think the reason people are so upset is because they are having considerably worse experiences than I am.

00:30:26   Because I have definitely had to blow out the keyboard on my MacBook over the last two or three years, whatever it's been.

00:30:31   But I've never had yet a catastrophic failure like I think so many other people have.

00:30:35   In fact, Jon, I believe you have now gotten to the point of catastrophic failure on yours.

00:30:39   And it's just weird to me because my gut reaction is, "Oh my God, people, relax. It's not that bad."

00:30:47   No, but it is that bad for them. Never mind.

00:30:49   Yeah, as soon as it happens to you and you can't type on your keyboard anymore, it changes your perspective a little bit.

00:30:54   Again, we talked about this a million times. None of us know what the actual percentages are.

00:30:58   But the fact that there's really nothing to do except for be without my laptop.

00:31:01   It's the whole reason I still have this on my laptop. Why don't you just bring it to work? It's not even yours. They'll fix it for you.

00:31:05   But I don't want to be without my laptop. I don't want to have a loaner. I'm in the middle of a bunch of stuff.

00:31:10   I don't want to have to back up and restore a bunch of my files. It's a hassle.

00:31:14   And so I'm just dealing with the hassle. And it's stupid, but DHH is doing it because, "Well, whatever. What else does he have to do with his time?"

00:31:23   And so he decided, "It's a good experiment to do. You've got the disposable income and the time. Why not try Windows? See what else is out there?"

00:31:29   And didn't expect it to stick and he didn't and he ended up returning the thing. But it wasn't because of the keyboard that he returned it.

00:31:35   Well, it's funny. In a way, Casey, you started that by saying that he was so fed up that he switched platforms.

00:31:41   I've kind of done that too. I hate using my laptop so much, and it's almost entirely because of that keyboard,

00:31:48   that I do almost all of my portable work now on my iPad instead. And I save things that I need a Mac for when I'm home.

00:31:57   And when I went on a trip, I brought my iPad Pro instead of bringing a laptop.

00:32:02   I really don't like using it. And again, it's almost entirely because I just hate the keyboard feel.

00:32:11   So in a way, I have kind of switched platforms except for my portable needs just to avoid using that stupid laptop.

00:32:18   And so that's not a small thing. There's a real collection of issues here that affect people in pretty substantial ways.

00:32:25   So I just hope our long national nightmare will be over soon. I feel like we're so close. We're so close.

00:32:33   I hope so. I really do. So what's going to happen when we have no more ports?

00:32:39   Like even if the port situation stays the same, we have no more ports but the keyboard got better.

00:32:44   Is that enough for Marco? Are you going to finally stop complaining and moaning, or are you going to still whine about the ports?

00:32:50   The ports are inconvenient. The ports make me have to carry dongles. But if I have to carry dongles and the rest of it's fine, then I'll be happy with that.

00:33:03   Dongles are way less than your iMac Pro. Even the hundred that you need.

00:33:08   Well, and like the ports, that problem can be solved with some dongles. The keyboard can't. You can't avoid the keyboard.

00:33:17   That's an unsolvable problem in that machine. So it's a much worse problem.

00:33:21   If you can get away with having one or two dongles or buying a few new cables and that's it, then yeah, that sucks.

00:33:29   And you're out a bit of money, but then the problem's solved. So I'd rather have that problem than have a keyboard that I just hate no matter what.

00:33:37   What will happen if we get 16 inch or whatever MacBook Pros? Let's not go completely hog wild. Let's not say they have any USB-A ports, but they have at least as many if not more USB-C ports and they bring back your SD card reader.

00:33:57   I'd be on cloud nine. I'm not expecting USB-A. I would love it because there are so many people on so many occasions where it's like, "Hey, you don't just give me one USB-A port. I need it right this second. I don't have a dongle."

00:34:10   That would be very helpful. I don't see them doing it for lots of reasons, whether it's physical, thickness reasons, or ideological reasons and not going backwards or whatever. That's fine.

00:34:21   Honestly, I don't have any hopes for USB-A. I don't think it's going to happen.

00:34:25   Agreed. The need for SD cards has not gone away.

00:34:30   And yeah, fewer people use standalone cameras, but a lot of people who buy Pros still do.

00:34:37   A lot of the marketing images where Apple shows the ideal customer to buy these computers are people who use SD cards still.

00:34:46   So I would say that the need for that is still very much there. Now if we're carrying dongles anyway, most of the multi-dongle things have SD card readers built into them.

00:34:59   So it's less of a need than it was because we all have given up and given it to the dongle world anyway.

00:35:07   So ultimately, I would love an SD card slot, but I would classify it the same way I classify USB-A as just being pretty unlikely.

00:35:15   Now having more USB-C ports, that I think would be wonderful.

00:35:21   Again, I'm not, honestly I think the ports are going to be exactly the same. I think we're going to have four USB-C ports on the thing.

00:35:27   As do I.

00:35:28   I don't think we're going to have, and a headphone jack, god I hope.

00:35:30   But I'm not expecting any other changes to that because ultimately I see Apple standing by that for lots of different technical and ideological reasons.

00:35:42   Which is unfortunate because we still, these computers can still connect to fewer things than their predecessors could because we still end up wasting one port for power.

00:35:53   Because if you use your laptop the way that, again, people in Apple's marketing for these laptops use them, you can't run on battery for very long.

00:36:03   You can run on battery for maybe 90 minutes if you're doing what people are doing in the Apple commercials with these laptops.

00:36:08   So you need power most of the time. So then you're down to three ports.

00:36:14   And it's just like, these are basically three port laptops in practice. Or if you get the lower end models, one or zero port laptops.

00:36:23   And so just, I just want more, just give me more.

00:36:27   And all the arguments for how great Thunderbolt 3 ports are seem so wasted when one of them is being used just for power most of the time.

00:36:38   Like all that PCI Express bandwidth, all that expansion capability.

00:36:42   It's like, yeah, that's great, but I'm just plugging this in with this port. All it's doing is taking power. I don't need all that.

00:36:48   So there's a weird engineering tradeoff mismatch going on here. And so the more ports there are, the less bothersome that becomes.

00:36:59   So even if they went to five, which with odds they might not, but six, great.

00:37:05   Just the more the better. And the lower end models, the 13 inches, they should all have at least four.

00:37:12   Because you know what, that old 11 inch Air, that had a lot of ports on it.

00:37:17   I don't remember what the SD card slot was on the 2015, like what standard it supported or whatever.

00:37:25   But there is actually an opportunity if Apple ever decided that they wanted to look back at SD cards to support whatever the giant alphabet soup standard is for the fastest of the fastest SD card standard.

00:37:36   Do you happen to know what that is, Marco? Like UXHD?

00:37:39   Yeah, I think we're still on XC. Yeah, there's the UHS series. We're on SDXC for the capacity standards.

00:37:49   That's like Superballs.

00:37:50   I know. But yeah, so there's the faster generation of SD card slots that have the second row of pins on the back, but those are optional for readers.

00:38:00   Readers can read from both sets of pins at once and do a big parallel high bandwidth read, but they don't have to. So it's backwards compatible with everything.

00:38:09   So I believe the only computer that has that port so far on Apple's lineup is the iMac Pro.

00:38:14   Oh yeah, because the new 15 inches don't have slots.

00:38:17   Yeah, so the iMac Pro does have the super fast SD reader in it. And it's wonderful. I use it all the time. Whenever I don't miss and hit the vent instead.

00:38:26   Yeah, if you've got those big, you know, 41 or 62 megapixel or whatever they are images in the big Sony cameras and you're filling up these giant SD cards, it takes forever.

00:38:35   You're not going to do them over like Wi-Fi. And I guess suppose they work on USB-C, but then you're dealing with cables and that stupid flappy door that you open up to plug the cable into.

00:38:43   SD card, take the card out, shove it in. Like it's more convenient. And if it's faster, all the better.

00:38:51   So what happens then if in the next couple of weeks, we/Marco get the SD card equipped cellular enabled 16 inch laptop.

00:39:02   Oh cellular!

00:39:04   And then right after that, I just shush. And then right after that we get the Mac Pro and suddenly Marco just wants to talk about the 16 inch laptop. Doesn't really care about the Mac Pro anymore.

00:39:16   And John just wants to talk about his Mac Pro. And then what do I get to decide what we talk about? Is that how this works?

00:39:21   Marco is going to mostly use his iMac. So even though he'll be excited if he got his fantasy laptop, then he'll just put it away, wait for his next trip and continue to sit in front of his iMac all day. So don't worry about it.

00:39:31   Well, I think this problem will solve itself because if they come out anywhere near the same time, the answer is I get to talk about the laptop first because John will waffle on.

00:39:40   It's taking me forever to buy one.

00:39:41   Yeah, John will waffle on his purchase. He'll be afraid to pull the trigger on a 15 grand purchase and will waffle over it for at least a couple of weeks.

00:39:48   15, that's adorable.

00:39:49   And my computer will take forever to ship anyway because it's not like they're going to be, you know, and then it'll take a while to sort of install because unlike a laptop where you just open it up and just plop it on a table, like I have a lot of stuff to move and transfer data from. So don't worry.

00:40:04   Yeah, John's going to have to like rebuild his entire office from scratch to fit this computer into it somehow. So yeah, don't worry. It'll be a process.

00:40:11   I mean, it's the same size as my other one, but I do have to like, once you're, you know, I thought about this when I was looking at, what was I looking at? Something on television or whatever showing someone set up and looking at their cables.

00:40:23   I always do think about and I think about in my house where all my cables are. If you have a desktop computer that's been there for a long time and has a lot of peripherals, you kind of forget how many cables there are because I'm cleverly hidden them and routed them or whatever.

00:40:37   Once you start pulling things out, then you just you just end up with this giant wad. Wow, I couldn't believe how much of this stuff was back there. Exactly how many wires have to connect for all this stuff to work together when it comes time to move it, especially if you're transferring data.

00:40:49   I have to have them both connected for some period of time to transfer stuff or I have to get hard drives from it or whatever. Oh, forget it. Then I have to get everything out.

00:40:56   Then you got to vacuum behind there because of all the dust and the gross stuff. And I got to install the new UPS and maybe get some new networking cables. Like, you know, once once the walls are open, you know. Right. Exactly.

00:41:07   You're going to take a sabbatical just so you can do your new computer upgrade. It's not as bad as my TV. My TV is worse. I should take some pictures from behind my TV. It is not a neatly arranged set of cables. The stuff you can see is neat, but if you look behind there, I mean, I have like five game consoles connected to my television plus a receiver and what else is there?

00:41:27   The TiVo and it's just, yeah, there's too much stuff. And then all the wires going out to all the speakers. It's terrifying back there. Plus all the power bricks. Oh my God, the power bricks. It's bad.

00:41:39   You know, it's not Steven Hackett's way to be mean or nasty, but if he ever is mean or nasty, just send him that picture and he'll have nightmares for weeks.

00:41:49   Yeah, I'll send him the picture of the neat part where you can see where I have like the 17 HDMI cables snaking down from my plasma television that used to have all those ports. I have all the optical cables, like everything that you can plug into my things and my television are plugged in. I have ethernet cables and everything.

00:42:04   And there's like an eight port switch behind there as well with its own power brick. There's a lot going on behind my TV.

00:42:10   I will admit something embarrassing. I actually, when I upgraded my switch in my house, I upgraded to a power ethernet switch that can send power ethernet over any of its ports. And I actually upgraded the sub switch that I keep in my TV entertainment center solely for the reason that I upgraded it to one that could be powered by power over ethernet to save one power brick under my TV.

00:42:35   Yeah, nice. I mean, because I have like the big, you know, I don't have UPS behind my TV. I probably should, but I have like a couple of big power strips connected to different outlets from each other. And I buy like the biggest ones, like the 12 outlet ones that are really far spread out because you need room for the stupid bricks to not butt up against each other.

00:42:53   I'm basically at capacity. All this is to say is when I replace my television, it's going to be worse because that's moving furniture and big heavy things and I'm going to have to pare down on the consoles. Like my television supports component input, which is what my sort of analog era consoles are connected to because it's the best connection. Like I think my GameCube is connected to component.

00:43:14   And all those parts are gone from modern TVs, so I just won't have those connected. I know I can buy adapters, but I'll probably get to retire them. And so I'll pare things down substantially and hopefully get some space back.

00:43:25   Wait, so right now, so you still have a GameCube connected and ready to go right now?

00:43:29   Mm-hmm.

00:43:31   Oh my god. What other analog consoles do you have?

00:43:34   The Wii is, the Wii is not HD, yeah, so that's my other one.

00:43:38   Oh my god, how often do you use the Wii?

00:43:41   Well the Wii is actually my substitute GameCube, right? So because I have a Wii with GameCube compatibility, so if I want to play a GameCube game, I'm probably going to play it on the Wii, but occasionally I'll want to play it on the GameCube or it'll already be in-

00:43:52   So you effectively have two GameCubes connected to your TV right now?

00:43:55   Yeah, well the Wii is also a Wii.

00:43:57   In 2019.

00:43:58   Yeah, well also they're just taking up space in my entertainment center at this point because I so rarely use them, right? But they like, they take up space that's important for them to be there because they hide the wires that are behind them, you know what I mean? They look nice, right?

00:44:12   If I were to remove them, you'd be able to see through, because my entertainment center thing is just like this metal frame with glass shelves, like it's not enclosed, which is good for airflow and everything, but bad if you're trying to hide a terrifying rat's nest of cables.

00:44:25   Does your TV have a RF input? I can send you my second chances.

00:44:28   Wow.

00:44:29   No, it does have composite input, I think, though, which is crazy for an HDTV. It's got component input for sure, because I have things plugged into that, it might have composite, I don't know.

00:44:38   Alright, my final question, Jon, I'm looking at automobiles.honda.com. A 2020 Accord LX CVT, which I think is the cheapest Accord you can buy, the MSRP is $23,870. What is the likelihood in your mind that your computer will be more or less expensive than, let's say, what is the likelihood it will be more expensive than this?

00:45:03   Including the display?

00:45:04   It will be less.

00:45:06   You think you will be spending less than $24,000 with the display?

00:45:09   I do. I think so, too. He can't make himself spend more than that. I'm guessing the display, you're going to spend the seven grand on the good one, and I'm guessing the Mac Pro itself is going to be between seven and ten. That's why I'm thinking between $14,000 and $17,000.

00:45:26   And don't forget all my finagling for discounts.

00:45:28   Yeah, I know, but like...

00:45:30   Oh, no, okay, but I'm talking about like the MSRP of whatever you buy.

00:45:34   Yeah, well, I mean, like cars, no one ever pays the full price. Anyway, considering the most expensive car I've ever purchased has been less than $25,000, the odds of me getting a computer to cost more than that is not that high.

00:45:46   Although you get more years out of your computers than you get out of your cars.

00:45:49   I use both for around ten years.

00:45:51   The 2020 Civic Sedan LX CVT, $20,550. I think that's in the running. I really do.

00:45:57   It's close.

00:45:59   I would never spend $20,000 for a car with a CVT. Come on.

00:46:02   Oh, but you're missing my point. My point is simply that for the price of your Mac Pro, I think you will be able to get a...

00:46:09   A bad car that I wouldn't like?

00:46:11   A very bad car that you wouldn't like.

00:46:13   Yeah, more than one.

00:46:15   Yeah, I mean, you can always get like, you know, you can still find cars for $15,000 or whatever, just not Honda.

00:46:20   No, no, no, no, my point is like looking at Honda, which is your kind of your jam, what Honda could you buy new for the amounts of money you're going to spend on your Mac Pro?

00:46:30   And as another example, the 2019 Civic starts at just under $20,000.

00:46:35   And I don't think you're going to get to $20,000 on your Mac Pro, but I think you're going to get uncomfortably close.

00:46:40   But even if I did, that's $2,000 a year. So that's like Marco buying a new computer every year, which he does. It's nothing.

00:46:46   It's amortized over ten years, right?

00:46:49   I haven't bought one this year.

00:46:50   You haven't?

00:46:51   You haven't bought any? You've bought zero computers?

00:46:53   My laptop is from last summer, not this summer.

00:46:56   You're going to buy the 16-inch this year, though, right?

00:46:57   Definitely, yeah.

00:46:58   So there you go.

00:46:59   If it becomes available, I'm ordering it.

00:47:00   And it will not cost less than $2,000. So there we go.

00:47:03   That's also true.

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00:47:51   You can pop the battery right out, and then you can carry it on board with you.

00:47:54   And inside the bag, there's all sorts of great features, too.

00:47:57   They have an interior compression system that lets you pack more.

00:48:00   They have a removable, washable laundry bag.

00:48:03   And it's super easy to maneuver through airports because they have four 360-degree spinner wheels

00:48:07   for a nice, smooth, silent ride.

00:48:09   On the outside, there's a TSA-approved combination lock.

00:48:12   And all the materials here are top quality and guaranteed for life.

00:48:17   They have their signature polycarbonate, a really strong, durable, lightweight material.

00:48:21   They also, a few months back, added anodized aluminum.

00:48:23   And they recently added an expandable line that has a fabric outside.

00:48:28   These are all super nice, premium materials.

00:48:30   And they have a 100-day travel-with-it risk-free trial.

00:48:34   So you can actually buy an Away suitcase to travel with,

00:48:37   because of course, how else would you try it, right?

00:48:39   If you don't like it within 100 days, you can return it.

00:48:41   So check it out today and get $20 off a suitcase at awaytravel.com/atp20

00:48:47   and using promo code ATP20 during checkout.

00:48:50   Once again, awaytravel.com/atp20.

00:48:53   Code ATP20 for $20 off a suitcase.

00:48:56   Thank you so much to Away for sponsoring our show,

00:48:58   because this season, everyone wants to get Away.

00:49:01   [Music]

00:49:04   James Stratford writes, this was with regard to somebody asking about

00:49:08   why Time Machine does not use APFS.

00:49:10   And James writes, "Another reason an APFS Time Machine rewrite may not be a priority

00:49:15   is that APFS seems to be focused on SSDs,

00:49:18   and few people would use expensive SSD storage for backup at this point."

00:49:22   Which, I think that point in and of itself makes sense,

00:49:25   but John, as our resident file system expert, what says you?

00:49:29   I included it because it does make sense.

00:49:31   But on the other hand, SSD prices have been going down a lot,

00:49:35   and it's not like it used to be.

00:49:37   I bet a surprising number of people are going to start using SSDs for backups when available.

00:49:42   The APFS performance on spinning disks is crap.

00:49:45   It works, but it was never designed for that.

00:49:49   I don't think that's the reason why they haven't done it, like I said on the last show.

00:49:54   They're working towards it in slow, steady increments.

00:49:57   They're not sandbagging because they're like,

00:49:59   "Oh, we've got to wait for everyone to not have spinning disks."

00:50:02   People have backup to SSDs. Not everyone has terabytes and terabytes of data.

00:50:05   And the great thing about SSDs is they're all bus-powered in a nice, handy little case.

00:50:10   Again, PowerBricks is the enemy of all good people everywhere.

00:50:15   And it's great to backup to an SSD because it doesn't take forever.

00:50:19   So I highly endorse SSDs as backup drives.

00:50:23   They're small, they're silent, and they're much less expensive than you might think

00:50:27   as long as you don't have tons and tons of data to backup.

00:50:30   Finally, we enter Letterboxd corner.

00:50:32   Can you tell me about the benefits of Letterboxd Pro?

00:50:35   Last week I said that you can pay for Letterboxd,

00:50:38   but I didn't know if you got anything for paying for it.

00:50:41   Well, apparently you do. I've always been paying for it,

00:50:43   so I don't really know what it's like not to pay for it.

00:50:45   But apparently, according to Letterboxd.com/Pro,

00:50:48   you get personalized annual and all-time stats pages based on your diary entries.

00:50:52   You can filter your favorite streaming services,

00:50:56   basically tell it which ones you actually subscribe to.

00:50:58   And you can filter activity by type, pin reviews to your profile,

00:51:01   duplicate lists, change your username,

00:51:03   and have cool background images on your profile pages

00:51:05   and all sorts of other perk type things.

00:51:07   So you do get something for your money if that interests you.

00:51:10   And related to that, I said in the last episode that I was using it kind of wrong

00:51:14   because every time I watch a movie, I would go in and I would give it a rating,

00:51:18   and that would also mark it as "Watch," but what it wouldn't do is add a diary entry

00:51:22   to record that I watch it.

00:51:23   So at the end of the year when they say, "Hey, check out your annual review

00:51:27   of everything that you watched, and we'll show you these cool stats and graphs,"

00:51:30   I'd go and say, "You watched zero films this year," which is not true.

00:51:34   They want me, every time I watch a movie, to make a diary entry,

00:51:37   which is like a couple more clicks.

00:51:38   I sent a feature request ages ago saying, "Don't make me do more clicks."

00:51:42   If I go and rate a movie that I have never rated before,

00:51:45   also add a diary entry that says, "Hey, you watched this,"

00:51:49   in addition to what they're doing.

00:51:50   So they haven't added that feature, but one of the people from Letterboxd's site told me,

00:51:55   "Because we preserved the date when you watched it,"

00:52:00   the date when the little unwatched watched Boolean bit flipped,

00:52:04   "you can export your data and then reimport it to make diary entries."

00:52:10   And it pointed me to some export/import page, which I went to,

00:52:13   but I figured, "Oh, this will be a big pain in the butt.

00:52:15   It's going to drop out these giant JSON blobs, and they'll have to transform them

00:52:19   and make new blobs and write to an API and sign up for a dev account

00:52:25   and get an access token and make a little program."

00:52:27   I'm not going to do that, but I just want to see what it looks like,

00:52:29   whatever. And it turns out, as I wrote in the show notes,

00:52:32   it's CSV-Z, which I think should be their slogan.

00:52:37   Their export is a CSV file. You go and you export,

00:52:39   and it gives you a zip file with a bunch of CSV files,

00:52:41   and the CSV files are dead simple.

00:52:43   There's one for each type of thing. It's called like diary.csv,

00:52:46   watchlist.csv, and CSV is the format that's not a format,

00:52:52   as any programmer knows who's ever tried to deal with CSV files.

00:52:54   But in this case, it was very straightforward.

00:52:57   There's a little header to tell you what the fields are.

00:52:59   I didn't even have to read any documentation. It was totally clear.

00:53:01   And then I saw my diary, which had zero entries,

00:53:04   which was a little bit of a problem.

00:53:06   All I needed to do to reassure myself, and so I was sure that I didn't have to read documentation,

00:53:10   is I added a diary entry and then re-exported my data so I'd have at least one line

00:53:14   so I knew what the lines looked like, because there was a bunch of fields.

00:53:17   Like, "Is that a Boolean? Do they want a Y and N? Is it T or F? Is it 1 or 0?"

00:53:21   So I made a diary entry, downloaded the file, saw what a diary entry looked like,

00:53:25   and then I just, in BBEdit, just did, like, select all, one, you know,

00:53:30   Regex copy and replace thing, and just uploaded.

00:53:34   The import step was I just uploaded the diary.csv file that I had now filled out

00:53:39   with my hand-selected set of all of the movies.

00:53:43   The point of the person from the site was telling me,

00:53:47   "Just because you mark something as watched doesn't mean you watched it at that moment,"

00:53:50   which is true. When I first signed up for the service,

00:53:52   I went through this huge back catalog of movies saying, "Okay, I watched that one,

00:53:56   and I rated this." Like, I rated, like, literally 1,000 movies just sitting there

00:54:00   just in one day, you know, clicking, clicking, clicking, putting out ratings.

00:54:04   It doesn't mean I watched them all that day, right?

00:54:06   So I wouldn't want those to show up as diary entries,

00:54:08   because then the first year I was on the service, it was like,

00:54:10   "You watched 1,000 movies this year," which is not true.

00:54:13   So, you know, they would want to do that automatically,

00:54:15   which is why I suggested they have, like, a feature that says,

00:54:17   "Do you want this feature on or off when you rate a movie? Should it mark as viewed?"

00:54:20   Anyway, since I had the CSV there, I could see,

00:54:23   "Oh, look, 2013 when I signed up for the site. Here's, like, 500 entries."

00:54:26   Ignore all those that all happened on that one day.

00:54:29   And then starting after, like, the first legit entry that's, like,

00:54:32   five days later from me watching a movie,

00:54:34   everything from that point on is a legit watch.

00:54:36   So I use that as the contents of my diary.csv.

00:54:39   So, long story long, now on my Letterboxd page,

00:54:43   every single movie I've watched has a diary entry.

00:54:46   And I'm going to try to, from now on, actually add diary entries.

00:54:50   Like, the main reason I didn't do it before is because I didn't realize until the first year

00:54:53   I had used the service that I was using it wrong.

00:54:55   At that point, I didn't want to go back and do it.

00:54:57   But let's be less than anyone who's making a website or API.

00:55:01   Really dead simple import and export is great for people who,

00:55:05   I'm not even going to say for programmers. I didn't have to do any programming.

00:55:07   I literally did all this in BBEdit with search and replace. It was so easy.

00:55:11   That is very cool, actually. I saw the entry in the show notes,

00:55:14   and I couldn't tell if that was deep sarcasm or not.

00:55:17   I'm actually pleased to hear this. That's very cool.

00:55:20   All right, we should talk about Apple TV+.

00:55:24   And I want to immediately point you to upgrade number 270 from this week,

00:55:29   called "The Toughest Compare," where Jason and Mike go through

00:55:34   and talk about some of the Apple TV+ shows.

00:55:37   I would actually like to discuss a little bit about them.

00:55:39   If you don't listen to upgrade, they have a really great segment called,

00:55:42   what is it, Downstream? Is that right?

00:55:44   Upstream.

00:55:45   Upstream, of course.

00:55:46   It's called Downstream.

00:55:48   That made me, I really want that one back.

00:55:50   But too late. Mark will fix it in edit, I swear.

00:55:53   Will I?

00:55:54   So anyway, they have a really great segment called Upstream, ladies and gentlemen,

00:55:59   where they talk about TV-related news and so on and so forth.

00:56:03   The whole episode is very good. You should check it out.

00:56:05   But I wanted to talk a little bit about my Apple TV+ experience

00:56:09   over the last 48 hours when I finally started watching a little of Apple TV+.

00:56:13   I have seen episode one of Morning Show, and I have seen episode one of For All Mankind.

00:56:20   Marco, have you had the time to watch anything so far?

00:56:23   As usual, I haven't seen it.

00:56:25   Okay.

00:56:26   Yeah. And to be fair, I do plan to watch these shows,

00:56:31   but I don't watch a ton of TV shows.

00:56:33   I watch entire series when possible, and that doesn't leave a lot of time.

00:56:38   I was going to say, you don't watch a ton of TV shows,

00:56:40   but you're working your way through all of Cheers.

00:56:42   Yes.

00:56:43   As I've mentioned before, the world of technology is very big,

00:56:47   and one show can't possibly cover all of technology.

00:56:51   I like that Upgrade covers the whole streaming and TV side of all these businesses very well,

00:56:58   because it kind of means that we don't have to.

00:57:00   They have it covered, and that's nice, because honestly,

00:57:04   as Apple gets into all these different businesses,

00:57:07   we don't really cover the credit card business.

00:57:09   Apple's now in the credit card business.

00:57:11   We talked about it here.

00:57:12   We talked about it briefly, but we're not going to really make it a thing,

00:57:15   because that's not really what our show's about.

00:57:18   And even though our show tries to encompass as much of Apple as we can,

00:57:22   Apple's really big now, and they're in all these different areas

00:57:26   that we have neither the time nor the expertise nor the will

00:57:30   to cover in great detail most of the time.

00:57:32   And so I think TV is going to end up being one of these areas.

00:57:36   We're going to cover it about the same way we cover credit cards,

00:57:39   which is very briefly when it first comes out,

00:57:41   and then we're going to forget about it,

00:57:43   because ultimately more stuff is going to go on.

00:57:45   They're going to release these laptops.

00:57:47   They're going to release the Mac Pro.

00:57:48   They're going to have new AirPods and new other stuff.

00:57:50   We're going to talk about that stuff.

00:57:52   We're going to measure the keycaps with my calipers way more

00:57:55   than we're going to end up talking about the details of,

00:57:58   "Oh, this series is pretty good, and they got this director,"

00:58:02   because that's not really us.

00:58:04   It's definitely not Marco, but I've got a whole other podcast

00:58:06   where apparently all we do is talk about Apple TV.

00:58:08   [laughter]

00:58:10   John, what have you seen so far?

00:58:13   I have watched.

00:58:15   They did an interesting thing here with the episodes.

00:58:19   They didn't do the Netflix thing where they dropped whole seasons,

00:58:21   but they also didn't release a single episode.

00:58:23   They released the first three episodes, I think, of all the shows.

00:58:26   The first three for Morning Show.

00:58:28   I think that's true.

00:58:29   For the big ones.

00:58:30   Anyway, I watched the first three episodes of For All Mankind,

00:58:33   and I watched the first three episodes of See,

00:58:35   because that's all there are released of those two shows.

00:58:38   I'm going to check out Dickinson.

00:58:40   I might check out the Morning Show.

00:58:42   I'm not sure it's up my alley, but that's my plan.

00:58:45   But I did want to talk about, and not in the length that we go into

00:58:50   and reconcile differences and upgrade in other shows,

00:58:54   the actual application on various platforms

00:58:58   through which we watch these shows.

00:59:01   I had a tweet, I guess on November 1st when the thing came out.

00:59:06   It was my only tweet about Apple TV Plus at that point, I think.

00:59:10   I basically said that I started watching a show,

00:59:13   and then put down my iPad, and then later came back and picked up my iPad

00:59:17   and wanted to resume watching the show.

00:59:19   And the Apple TV app on the iPad was like, "What show?

00:59:22   You weren't watching a show."

00:59:24   I swear I was.

00:59:27   It didn't remember my play acquisition.

00:59:30   That's not a great first experience for the application.

00:59:33   That was my whole tweet.

00:59:35   It fit in a single tweet with a new longer tweet length.

00:59:37   It's like I started watching a show, put down the iPad,

00:59:39   picked it up without doing anything else, and it didn't let me resume.

00:59:42   It got a lot of responses, some people thinking I was implying

00:59:46   that they don't have this feature.

00:59:48   They do, now that I've watched lots of shows in it.

00:59:50   It does know how to resume where you left off sometimes.

00:59:54   But really, I think there's an important perspective.

01:00:00   So the application has problems sometimes.

01:00:03   It doesn't keep track of where you left off.

01:00:05   The UI is not great. The hierarchy of the UI is not great.

01:00:08   I kept alluding to the show where I talk about Apple TV.

01:00:12   On the upcoming episode of "Reconsiderable Differences,"

01:00:14   we talk about this even more.

01:00:16   Just sort of the standard set by the other streaming services

01:00:18   of when you launch them, the upper left corner is a giant square

01:00:21   that shows you the show you were just watching

01:00:23   and the upper right corner is a square that shows you where you are

01:00:25   and if you want to pick up where you were.

01:00:27   And when the show ends, there's a button to bring you to the next episode,

01:00:30   and the next episode they'll often skip the opening credits,

01:00:32   or at the very least they'll skip the recap

01:00:34   because they know you just watched that episode.

01:00:36   There's no reason for you to watch the recap right before the...

01:00:38   Basic sort of quality of life features of streaming apps

01:00:41   that Apple is falling down on.

01:00:44   And despite the giant barrage of crazy angry people yelling at me on Twitter

01:00:50   because I dared say something bad about Apple's service,

01:00:53   it is right to expect Apple to do these things, right?

01:00:57   But what I didn't say, and I didn't really engage with anything on Twitter

01:01:02   because I wasn't interested in arguing with people about stuff,

01:01:04   I was too busy watching TV shows.

01:01:06   Which brings me to my larger point,

01:01:08   which is pretty much no matter how bad the app is

01:01:12   and how many bugs it has,

01:01:14   as long as it can actually deliver the video to your eyeballs

01:01:19   without crashing or stopping or whatever,

01:01:22   as long as you can literally see the video,

01:01:24   the thing that dominates all these other concerns about,

01:01:27   "Oh, the app and the UI, and I don't like how it didn't do this,

01:01:29   and it wasn't easy for me to resume," or whatever,

01:01:31   is the shows.

01:01:33   If the shows are good, people will tolerate an app that's buggy,

01:01:37   a thing that doesn't pick up where it left off.

01:01:39   Sometimes it doesn't offer to show you the next episode.

01:01:41   Sometimes you have to hunt through the app.

01:01:42   It doesn't matter.

01:01:44   People dealt with terrible, rabbit-ier antennas and tinfoil

01:01:48   and trying to get a good signal

01:01:50   and terrible cable boxes with really bad remotes.

01:01:53   People will tolerate almost any bad UI

01:01:56   if what you give them is good content.

01:01:58   So my context for whatever discussion we're about to have

01:02:03   about the actual content of the shows

01:02:05   is that despite the fact that I'm disappointed

01:02:07   in the quality and features available in Apple's applications

01:02:10   for watching the shows,

01:02:12   it matters to me, and it matters big picture-wise

01:02:16   to the world at large,

01:02:18   so much less than the actual TV shows.

01:02:21   That's what matters in this context.

01:02:23   I know we're so used to talking about Apple

01:02:25   in the context of what's their hardware, what's their UI,

01:02:28   because that was the whole product pitch,

01:02:30   but this is a fundamentally different business.

01:02:32   This is the entertainment business,

01:02:33   and while those things matter,

01:02:36   the various quality of the UI and the hardware and software,

01:02:39   blah, blah, blah, the thing that dominates

01:02:41   is how good are the TV shows.

01:02:43   No one talks about movies in terms of,

01:02:45   "I love that movie, but the seats in the theater

01:02:48   that I saw it in were a little bit uncomfortable.

01:02:50   It was a bad UI."

01:02:52   The Oscars aren't docked because the seats were bad.

01:02:55   I know it's a bad analogy, but anyway,

01:02:57   that's not what matters in this case,

01:02:59   which is frustrating because we want the apps to be good

01:03:02   and up to the standards that we expect

01:03:04   from a company that's supposedly good at this,

01:03:07   and as I think they talked about in "Upgrade,"

01:03:09   it's fairly surprising to see

01:03:11   that the worst aspect of Apple TV's launch

01:03:15   is actually the stuff that Apple is supposed to be good at,

01:03:17   like hardware and software applications,

01:03:20   but really, all that matters is the shows,

01:03:23   so I think that's what we should talk about.

01:03:26   -Agreed. I went into this

01:03:28   having heard a little bit about "Morning Show"

01:03:31   and even less about "For All Mankind."

01:03:33   I'm going to do my darndest to try to do this spoiler-free.

01:03:36   Additionally, on "Upgrade," they were spoiler-free,

01:03:39   and I have not yet listened, but on "Lift Off" number 111,

01:03:43   Jason and Steven talk about "For All Mankind,"

01:03:46   "Lift Off" being their space podcast.

01:03:48   That's a pretty good place to talk about it.

01:03:50   My understanding is that was also spoiler-free,

01:03:52   so I'm going to do my darndest not to have any spoilers.

01:03:54   I went into episode one of "Morning Show"

01:03:57   knowing a bit about the premise,

01:03:59   and I didn't think I would really like it.

01:04:01   There was nothing about the premise

01:04:03   that really spoke to me, but given the cast

01:04:07   and given I thought Aaron might like that one,

01:04:11   we watched the first episode together.

01:04:13   I think we both liked it a fair bit.

01:04:15   She might have liked it a bit more than me,

01:04:17   but I liked it a lot more than I thought I would.

01:04:19   I was very intrigued by it.

01:04:21   It was immediately apparent

01:04:24   that they were establishing ground rules

01:04:27   for what an Apple TV show would be

01:04:29   and that there were swear words

01:04:31   within the first, like, 30 seconds or something like that,

01:04:35   which for me, and I tend to use the F-word as a comma

01:04:38   when left to my own devices.

01:04:39   I didn't have any particular problem with that,

01:04:41   but if you recall, months ago, people were saying,

01:04:43   "Oh, it's going to be family-friendly,

01:04:45   and it's going to be almost Disney-like,"

01:04:47   and it is not almost Disney-like, not a bit.

01:04:51   I've also heard that "C" is extremely graphic.

01:04:54   I have not seen it yet,

01:04:56   but I've heard that that is very, very, very graphic

01:05:00   to the point of making Mike a little bit uncomfortable,

01:05:02   and Mike isn't a clutch-the-pearls kind of person,

01:05:05   generally speaking.

01:05:06   -He's just uncomfortable with female sexuality, that's all.

01:05:09   -Oh, my God, I'm not touching that one.

01:05:11   Moving on, Mike, you can send your angry e-mails to John.

01:05:15   Moving on, I thought the show was good.

01:05:17   I thought the cast was great.

01:05:18   It was a relatively interesting premise.

01:05:21   The most interesting thing to --

01:05:23   possibly the most interesting thing to me was

01:05:25   when they went on a bit of a diatribe

01:05:27   about how broadcast TV is dying because of streaming services

01:05:30   as they're doing this television program on a streaming service,

01:05:33   which I thought was quite funny.

01:05:35   But all told, it was pretty obvious

01:05:37   to see where the plot was going, I thought,

01:05:40   in a way that I did not feel that that was the case

01:05:42   with "For All Mankind," but on "Morning Show,"

01:05:44   I felt like it was pretty obvious

01:05:45   to see where the plot was going through Episode 1 anyway.

01:05:48   But I really enjoyed it quite a bit,

01:05:50   and I was very surprised by how much I enjoyed it.

01:05:53   John, what were your kind of quick thoughts on it?

01:05:56   -So, I watched "For All Mankind" first

01:05:58   because it was the show that I had the most interest in,

01:06:01   both based on the premise and also the people behind it.

01:06:06   I talked more about all these shows,

01:06:08   "Unreconcilable Differences," "In a Spoiler-Free Way."

01:06:10   I'm going to talk in a spoiler-free way here, as well,

01:06:12   maybe in a more abbreviated form.

01:06:14   I thought it was fine.

01:06:16   I still like the premise. I'm still watching the show.

01:06:18   I'm still interested in it.

01:06:20   It didn't blow me away with its writing or acting.

01:06:22   The special effects budget should have been bigger

01:06:25   for a show about space.

01:06:27   They should have -- I know it's not the same pool of money,

01:06:30   or maybe it is, but the money they spent on "C,"

01:06:33   you see it up there on the screen.

01:06:35   The money they didn't spend on the show about space stuff,

01:06:38   you also see it up on the screen,

01:06:40   which is kind of disappointing, but as a TV show,

01:06:42   I don't mind too much.

01:06:44   So, yeah, it's kind of like Marvel movies,

01:06:48   maybe to a lesser degree.

01:06:50   The big thing about Marvel movies is, it seemed to me,

01:06:53   aside from a few real outliers early on,

01:06:58   the Marvel machine that makes these movies

01:07:02   has mostly found a way to make sure

01:07:04   they don't make a terrible movie.

01:07:06   Again, you know, "Thor 2," whatever, say whatever you want.

01:07:08   But in general, they made a lot of movies,

01:07:11   and it's amazing that they made that many movies

01:07:14   that are, for the most part, okay to good.

01:07:16   Like, there's no part of them that's embarrassingly bad.

01:07:19   There's no, like, "Boy, I can't even believe they made this one,"

01:07:21   or, "This scene is a real clunker,"

01:07:23   or, "They should have got a better star for this movie."

01:07:26   Like, in general, there is, like, the floor is high.

01:07:29   They won't allow -- the machine will not allow them

01:07:32   to put out just an actively bad movie anymore, right?

01:07:36   And so, watching "For All Mankind," I'm like,

01:07:39   "This is not a bad show.

01:07:41   It's not, you know, it's not particularly innovative and daring.

01:07:47   The writing isn't super smart.

01:07:49   The premise is interesting.

01:07:51   The actors are good, but not too good.

01:07:53   Like, it's fine. It's okay. It's good.

01:07:56   Like, I'm enjoying it, but it doesn't have that extra special something."

01:08:02   Which, like, I read a big article by somebody --

01:08:05   I wish I could remember who, but a seasoned TV critic was saying,

01:08:08   like, "Look, when somebody comes out who's never made TV before, ever,

01:08:12   like, Apple's never made television shows before,

01:08:14   aside from, you know, "Carpool Karaoke," and whatever,

01:08:17   like, for their first thing, you can't expect --

01:08:20   and they put out, like, maybe four or five big shows --

01:08:23   zero of those are going to be "Game of Thrones."

01:08:26   Zero of those are going to be "Breaking Bad."

01:08:28   Zero of them are going to be "The Sopranos."

01:08:30   Like, they're not going to get half of them or two.

01:08:32   They're going to get zero.

01:08:33   You don't come out of the gate with "Breaking Bad,"

01:08:36   like, "Eh, it's our first try, and one out of our four shows

01:08:39   is, like, one of the greatest shows ever."

01:08:40   It's just not going to happen.

01:08:41   And, I mean, it was a chance they could have.

01:08:43   They had the right pedigree,

01:08:44   but expecting that is unrealistic, right?

01:08:47   Instead, as far as I can tell, based on the two shows that I watch,

01:08:50   Apple has fielded shows that are not bad, which is important.

01:08:54   Like, a lot of the earlier reviews were like,

01:08:56   "Oh, these shows are awful,"

01:08:57   and I spent some time on rectus talking to Merlin

01:08:59   about, like, the critics' ratings or whatever,

01:09:01   you know, on "Rotten Tomatoes," and that was early on

01:09:04   because I'm sure the numbers have changed a little bit,

01:09:06   but "For All Mankind" is not a bad show.

01:09:08   It is a good show. You should check it out.

01:09:10   It's got an interesting premise,

01:09:11   and I would recommend it for most people to watch.

01:09:14   - Yeah, I agree, and I actually would --

01:09:17   I agree in general, but I actually enjoyed

01:09:19   "For All Mankind" quite a bit more than I expected.

01:09:21   I went into "For All Mankind" thinking,

01:09:23   "I'm going to like this," and I really liked it.

01:09:26   I was surprised how much I liked it,

01:09:27   and even knowing the premise of it up front,

01:09:31   I felt like it took some twists and turns

01:09:33   that I didn't expect,

01:09:35   and they weren't dramatic twists and turns,

01:09:37   but the ending of the first episode

01:09:41   was not exactly what I expected,

01:09:43   and I can't be any more specific than that

01:09:44   because I don't want to spoil it,

01:09:45   but I thought it was really good.

01:09:49   I thought the way they handled the line

01:09:51   between the real past and their invented past,

01:09:55   I thought they handled that well.

01:09:56   I agree the acting and the writing were good but not great,

01:09:59   but "All Told," it was a premise

01:10:02   that I already found interesting just having heard about it,

01:10:04   and having watched only one episode so far,

01:10:06   it was far more interesting than I expected,

01:10:09   and I really, really like it so far,

01:10:11   and I like it so much, in fact,

01:10:13   that Erin and I were talking about it,

01:10:14   and she said in so many words,

01:10:16   "Well, why didn't you think I would like that?"

01:10:17   And then I thought about it,

01:10:18   and I don't know, why didn't I think you would like that?

01:10:21   We should watch this together,

01:10:22   watch the first episode together for me

01:10:24   a second time for her the first,

01:10:25   and then watch "For All Mankind" together.

01:10:27   So, so far, of the two shows that I've tried,

01:10:30   and admittedly, I've only tried one episode each,

01:10:32   I think the two of us are probably going to watch

01:10:35   both of these shows, and I expected to be like,

01:10:38   "Eh," about both of them, so I was quite surprised.

01:10:41   Now, with all that said, please feel free to comment on that

01:10:44   or just tell me about "C,"

01:10:45   because I know almost nothing about it.

01:10:47   - Yeah, I think you'll, if you continue watching

01:10:50   "For All Mankind," it'll just,

01:10:52   if you like the first episode,

01:10:53   you'll continue to like what they have on offer there,

01:10:55   'cause I think part of what Apple has done that's smart

01:10:58   is, with its, with at least "C" and "For All Mankind,"

01:11:02   is they've chosen shows with interesting premises,

01:11:07   like the pitch, if you see that someone

01:11:10   was to give you the pitch, you're like,

01:11:11   "Oh, that sounds like an interesting idea.

01:11:12   "You could make a good show out of that," right?

01:11:14   Whereas, like, they're starting,

01:11:16   they're not starting from zero,

01:11:17   'cause, like, it's much harder to say,

01:11:19   for example, "Deadwood."

01:11:21   If you give the pitch for "Deadwood,"

01:11:22   it's like, "Well, it's the Old West."

01:11:23   Well, that pitch is not showing me anything.

01:11:27   You could implement it in an okay way

01:11:30   and have a boring show about the Old West.

01:11:32   If you are, you know, really good,

01:11:36   and you could get something like "Deadwood,"

01:11:38   but just based on the pitch, you're like,

01:11:40   "Well, you're basically starting from the ground floor here.

01:11:41   "Everything you build, you're gonna have to build yourself."

01:11:43   I'm sure it's possible to make a "Deadwood" quality show

01:11:46   out of this Old West premise,

01:11:47   but it's also possible to make a crap show

01:11:49   out of this premise, 'cause the premise

01:11:50   is not helping you at all.

01:11:52   The premise on "For All Mankind" and "C,"

01:11:55   already, you've got a leg up.

01:11:56   You're like, you've already got the people's attention.

01:11:59   As long as you're vaguely competent,

01:12:02   you can build on that to go somewhere,

01:12:04   and I think that was smart,

01:12:05   because if they chose to just make a show about mobsters

01:12:09   or a show in the Old West, it's very easy to be like,

01:12:13   "Oh, I've seen a million mobster shows.

01:12:14   "Why would I even watch this?"

01:12:15   You have to make "The Sopranos" to get people interested.

01:12:18   Otherwise, you might end up with, like, say,

01:12:20   "Boardwalk Empire," which was a show that I enjoyed,

01:12:22   but it was not "The Sopranos."

01:12:23   Both of those pitches are similar.

01:12:24   It's like, "Hey, organized crime in insert era here," right?

01:12:28   Arguably, "Boardwalk Empire" was more interesting,

01:12:30   because it wasn't set in modern day.

01:12:31   Anyway, so that was smart, and I think "For All Mankind"

01:12:35   is handily above the average for all Netflix original material.

01:12:41   It's not as good as the best Netflix has made,

01:12:43   but it's much better than the average, I feel like,

01:12:45   because I watch a lot of questionable quality Netflix stuff.

01:12:48   Netflix puts out a lot of things,

01:12:51   and they're smart and they're savvy

01:12:53   and they try not to spend too much money,

01:12:55   and I do searches for various keywords and find a bunch of shows,

01:12:59   and you're like, "I can't even believe all this stuff exists,"

01:13:01   and I try them out, and some of them are stinkers and some of them aren't.

01:13:04   But "For All Mankind" is above average.

01:13:06   That's why I feel like it deserves a higher visual effects budget.

01:13:09   See, similarly, it's got a premise where already it's starting.

01:13:14   You've got my interest before even the first frame errors,

01:13:17   because I'm like, "Oh, I want to see what they're going to do with this premise."

01:13:21   The maturity thing of people thinking,

01:13:27   "Oh, they're not going to curse and they're going to Disney-fy,"

01:13:29   or whatever,

01:13:31   the F.C. does have a couple of scenes of violence and some sexual content

01:13:36   that clearly makes it very clear that that story about,

01:13:43   "Oh, Tim Cook's telling me I can't have adult things in my shows,"

01:13:47   was, as suspected in various ways, probably partially motivated

01:13:52   by someone who's disgruntled about creative direction in a particular show or whatever.

01:13:56   But that said, C does not even rise to the level of HBO adult content,

01:14:07   in that the sexual content is really tame in the grand scheme of things.

01:14:11   Nothing explicitly is shown or anything like that.

01:14:14   The violence is personal violence, but it is not particularly gory or grim.

01:14:21   To give just one example, The Boys on Amazon,

01:14:23   which I thought was an interesting show,

01:14:25   is so much more over-the-top with its gore.

01:14:27   It's totally in your face and trying to shock you with the gore.

01:14:30   C is not trying to shock you with the gore.

01:14:31   It's not trying to shock you with sex, for the most part,

01:14:33   again, unless you're very uncomfortable with female sexuality.

01:14:36   It's fine.

01:14:38   I'm not going to say it's Disney-ified, but it is all--

01:14:42   That's not what C is about.

01:14:43   C is not, even to the degree of Breaking Bad.

01:14:45   Breaking Bad had various moments where they're going to

01:14:47   sort of horrify you with this thing that happens,

01:14:49   and they're really going to show you what it would really be like if that happens,

01:14:52   not just the sanitized TV version of it.

01:14:54   C doesn't do that either.

01:14:56   So don't watch it with your kids, obviously,

01:14:58   but don't expect to be shocked by anything.

01:15:01   I feel like C, there's a lot of money on the screen.

01:15:04   It doesn't really hold together premise-wise.

01:15:09   If you think about it for too long, there's lots of hand-wavy stuff.

01:15:12   But the premise is interesting.

01:15:14   I love end-of-the-world stories, and so I'm totally willing to go along with it.

01:15:17   I feel like the star, Aquaman, what's his name?

01:15:21   Jason Momoa or something?

01:15:24   He may be a little bit overmatched by the acting required of him to carry this series.

01:15:33   But mostly he just has to be a sort of brooding lunkhead,

01:15:35   so it's kind of in his wheelhouse.

01:15:39   Again, I don't want to say it's bad.

01:15:41   The ratings that this got from critics, I think it was like 38% on Rotten Tomatoes for the critics rating,

01:15:45   that is wrong. It is not that bad.

01:15:47   It is absolutely not a 38% show by any stretch of the imagination.

01:15:51   It's not a 90% show either. It's fine.

01:15:54   I like For All Mankind better, but I'm still very interested in C

01:15:58   because you should see the garbage shows on Netflix that I've watched about the end of the world.

01:16:03   This is so much better than them.

01:16:05   I have a high tolerance for garbage shows when it's about the end of the world.

01:16:08   That's just me.

01:16:10   But I would recommend C to people who find the premise interesting

01:16:14   because if you hear about what the show is about and you're like, "Oh, that sounds kind of cool,"

01:16:17   you'll probably like it. Okay, good.

01:16:19   It's not great, but it's also not bad.

01:16:22   This sounds terrible, like these tempter reviews.

01:16:24   Again, I go back to that TV critic saying you can't expect when they field four or five shows

01:16:29   for any of them to be on par with the best shows on television in the past few years.

01:16:35   I think it's good that none of them, as far as I can tell, are awful.

01:16:39   You saw the morning show and didn't think it was awful, and that actually got some okay good reviews.

01:16:43   I saw C and For All Mankind, and they're not bad shows.

01:16:48   It sounds so terrible to not be able to say, "This is the best show ever."

01:16:51   None of them are the best show ever, but it is really important for Apple to come out of the gate,

01:16:54   especially in this free, where it's free to everyone who bought an iPhone for a year or whatever,

01:16:59   to get people to watch it and not turn it off in disgust or be like,

01:17:03   "Oh, Apple can't make TV shows," or "They really blew it."

01:17:05   I don't think anyone watching is going to say that.

01:17:08   I think what they'll say is, "Well, I got it for free. Maybe I'll watch it."

01:17:12   They'll get interested, and it starts moving along, and you watch it.

01:17:16   Maybe by the end of the first season, people will be like, "You know what? I really enjoyed that.

01:17:20   I'll pay for it for the next year or whatever."

01:17:22   I think content-wise, this is about as good as anyone could have expected.

01:17:27   You could still be out there saying, "Oh, if only they had that one great show,"

01:17:31   but I just think that was an unrealistic hope.

01:17:33   Any of these shows could turn into a great show.

01:17:36   It sometimes takes shows a little while to get their feet under them,

01:17:39   so I'm mostly impressed for a first-time TV maker to come out with a bunch of shows that are okay good.

01:17:46   I agree with you. Granted, I've watched a sum total of like 2 hours and 15 minutes of Apple TV+,

01:17:55   but I have been very, very surprised and very pleased with it so far.

01:17:59   Can you tell me about the streaming quality?

01:18:01   I watched For All Mankind on my phone in a fit of insomnia this morning.

01:18:06   Please don't yell at me.

01:18:08   Then I had watched the morning show on my very old 1080 TV,

01:18:13   but I would assume for those of us like you guys that have fancier TVs and fancier Apple TVs and so on and so forth,

01:18:19   that it probably looks pretty good.

01:18:22   This is FlatpanelsHD, which is a website, and this is the editor-in-chief writing in their forums.

01:18:29   He says, "Apple TV+ has the highest streaming quality we've seen for 4K so far.

01:18:34   It's higher than most iTunes movies."

01:18:36   Wow.

01:18:37   "Apple TV+ uses variable bitrate with quite a wide span.

01:18:40   The highest bitrate they've seen so far is 29 megabits per second average with a 41 megabit per second peak."

01:18:46   I've also seen reports saying, "Oh, I watched a bunch of Apple TV content in HDR on my TV,

01:18:52   and there was terrible compression and banding."

01:18:54   So it seems like the answer to the streaming quality is that Apple has the capacity to and will send you many more bits than other services will,

01:19:06   but if your connection is slow or inconsistent or has any problems, they will, of course, throttle down and you will see compression artifacts.

01:19:14   So the advantage of getting something from iTunes or watching it on a Blu-ray disc is you've got all the bits there,

01:19:19   and you're going to see all the bits.

01:19:21   Doing anything over streaming, if there's any hiccup in your connection or you actually have a bad connection or you have flaky Wi-Fi in the room you're in or whatever,

01:19:27   it's just going to throttle down and the quality is going to go down.

01:19:30   But it's good to know that Apple is leaning on this one potential technical advantage they have,

01:19:35   is they're willing to send you more bits because they have fewer subscribers and, in general, they've always cared about video quality.

01:19:42   But you're not going to see nice, pristine video if you can't sustain 29 megabit per second average to your television.

01:19:50   It doesn't mean like, "Well, my internet connection is 150 megabits or 300 megabits. I should get that."

01:19:55   Yeah, is your connection to your TV able to handle 29 megabits per second sustained?

01:20:00   And then, of course, there's server issues and CDN issues and all sorts of other technical things that are outside your control.

01:20:05   But I watch most of these shows on my iPad. I watch a surprising amount of TV on my iPad.

01:20:10   It's making me more and more wish for an OLED iPad, actually, just because I end up watching a show before I go to bed,

01:20:17   and the lights are all out and I've got my AirPods in. This is my right-before-bed TV-watching experience.

01:20:24   And I like watching TV like that. I haven't noticed any terrible compression artifacts, so I guess that's thumbs up.

01:20:34   Again, kind of like the shows. I didn't see anything bad. I also haven't noticed their quality being particularly great either.

01:20:40   But then again, all my internet connections and all my Wi-Fi is very high bandwidth,

01:20:45   and a lot of the shows I watch are actually streaming from my TiVo in the other room, and so there's no streaming issues there.

01:20:51   Or I'm watching stuff off my Plex where I know I'm getting all the bits because I do it in original quality because I have good network in my house.

01:20:57   So I think the audio/video is fine, but of course for any streaming service, you never know what you're going to get.

01:21:05   Anything else on Apple TV+?

01:21:07   I know I said I didn't want to harp on the application issues and the quality of the shows is the dominant factor. That's true, but I really do hope they get this stuff sorted out.

01:21:16   For all the world, it felt like they were having weird server issues. A couple people thought that maybe it was also the background process termination stuff.

01:21:25   Like maybe their app was getting killed before I could send an API request to mark my position in the show.

01:21:31   But honestly, I don't want to repeat the rant that I went into on Rectus. This is table stakes for the app.

01:21:38   You can either innovate and say we have a great idea of how to present an interface to television, but if you don't have any great ideas, just do what Netflix does.

01:21:46   When I launch the app, you absolutely have to show me in a gigantic box that I just paw it with my monkey paws and just say, "Look, just continue showing me the thing that I was watching.

01:21:55   If I was watching a show and I finished episodes, show me the next episode. If I'm in the middle of an episode, pick up where I left off."

01:22:00   I should never have to search for that.

01:22:03   They also could do with a concept like Netflix's My List or some other way to say, "These are the shows that I intend to be watching right now."

01:22:12   Every streaming app has some way for you to do that. They're all different, which kind of sucks.

01:22:17   Obviously, once you start watching a show, you expect the app to understand that you're watching it, but also you could say, "Oh, I would have liked to have gone in and say,

01:22:25   'Okay, I plan to watch For All Mankind, See, and Dickinson,' and then I'll think about the morning show."

01:22:32   I should have had some page somewhere that shows all three of those shows, and I should be able to go into them and see all the episodes and see how far along I am in them.

01:22:38   Then when I get to the end of an episode, it should go to the next one or prompt me to go to the next one.

01:22:42   It should just do all the things, and it kind of boggles my mind that they dropped the ball on that.

01:22:47   Some of it are bugs, and some of it is just that's not how they organize things.

01:22:50   They don't have these features. They don't conceptualize it the same way as Netflix.

01:22:54   I'm not saying they have to do what Netflix and Hulu and everybody else does, but if they don't, they've got to do something better.

01:22:59   Right now, they're doing neither. They're doing something worse, or they're trying to do the same thing but doing it with bugs.

01:23:04   It's not that big a deal because I eventually figure out how to get the show to play, but it just seems like it's not a high bar.

01:23:14   We're not asking them for amazing AI features that think about what I'm going to do.

01:23:19   If I was just watching a show, I'm probably going to want to continue watching it, so that should be the biggest, perhaps the only thing on the screen when I launch the app.

01:23:27   I also wanted to comment, and I think they talked about this on Upgrade as well.

01:23:31   It was surprising to me that there was no obvious "here's the Apple TV+ stuff," or at least not on the Apple TV app anyway.

01:23:40   There's so many of the same names.

01:23:42   On the device called Apple TV, I was in the TV app, and there was no obvious place for Apple TV+ content.

01:23:51   I was able to find it pretty quickly. It wasn't an egregious amount of effort to go find it.

01:23:56   That was the one time when it would have been nice for them to highlight, "This is the Apple TV+ stuff right here. Look here. Over here. Hey, hey, hey, over here."

01:24:03   It's on launch day. You would think it would be so in your face that you wouldn't be able to avoid it.

01:24:07   You end up looking for it. How am I hunting for this? How is this not a giant banner in my face that I can't even avoid?

01:24:13   On the flip side of the coin, though, I do respect that they're trying to, or it appears anyway, that they're trying to make a level playing field for all of the content in that app.

01:24:23   That's a charitable interpretation, yes, of their bad information architecture.

01:24:27   They're just trying to be fair to the other services that didn't launch today.

01:24:30   Well, you never know. I'm trying to get the benefit of the doubt. But all in all, again, I'm quite pleased.

01:24:37   One more aesthetic thing. Netflix, if you watch Netflix, they have a splash screen.

01:24:43   They recently changed it to this terrible thing with a bunch of colored lines.

01:24:46   The thing that says "Netflix" or the HBO bong and hilariously compression-defeating static, right?

01:24:52   It's the thing that shows you what service you're watching. I was actually curious of what Apple was going to do here, if they were going to do anything like that.

01:25:01   They do a twofer, right? So they've got a Netflix-style splash screen that says "Apple TV Plus."

01:25:08   And then they also have, before the shows, it says like, I think maybe Netflix does this too, but it says "an Apple original" or "an Apple original film" or something like that.

01:25:17   And both of those things are also surprising for Apple. The first one, the sort of Apple TV Plus splash thing, is very what I would expect a company that's not Apple to do.

01:25:29   It looks like every other sort of production logo thing, where it's shiny and backlit and the Plus is glowy and there's a little THX-type cord bong.

01:25:38   It's a little bit like the startup chime for a Mac, but it's a little bit different. It's all the things that you would expect that to be.

01:25:45   And that, I feel like, is a missed opportunity to do what only Apple could do, which is have no writing on the screen and just have an Apple logo.

01:25:52   If Steve Jobs were still alive, you know, we love doing those things, that would have been just an Apple logo.

01:25:57   Like, probably not even any sound or maybe some sound, but like, they're the only company, one of the few companies in the world that can literally put no text on the screen,

01:26:05   put one simple outline logo in a single color and everybody knows what they're in for. But they didn't. They went with the whole Apple TV Plus glowy Plus blah blah blah.

01:26:12   And then, the "an Apple original" thing, the text and the font they used, it looks like it would fit in an Apple marketing material, it does not look like it fits in in the front of a television program.

01:26:25   So I feel like both of those things, I was surprised by the aesthetic choices. The aesthetic choices in the case of the logo seem very conventional and in the case of the "an Apple original" seem kind of "meh".

01:26:38   So they have time to change it. Netflix, like I said, just changed their logo. I think it used to be like their regular logo, now it's this weird animation with a bunch of colored lines and stuff that I think is worse.

01:26:49   HBO is stubbornly sticking to their static despite how horrific it looks on streaming services.

01:26:54   So, you know, maybe in year three, someone will have an epiphany and say, "You know what? We should just show the Apple logo. Stick with the startup bong, that's fine, it's kind of cute and everything, but just show the Apple logo."

01:27:06   So you don't need to say "Apple TV Plus". It's not a great name, it's not a great logo, it doesn't need to glow.

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01:29:10   Alright, let's move on to SKTP and we begin with Josh Hattersley who writes, "You often mention that Apple's mobile system on chip are faster than Mac components using Geek."

01:29:20   I just totally butchered that. How can I rephrase this?

01:29:23   You tried to substitute words on the fly and you overflowed your own buffer.

01:29:28   I did. That is 1000% an accurate description of what just happened. Now you're going to leave it in the show though because that was funny.

01:29:35   I'll just read this verbatim and we can blame other people.

01:29:39   "You often mention Apple's mobile SOCs being faster than Mac parts in Geekbench, but is there much evidence that it's a good metric when comparing across architectures? For example ARM vs. x86.

01:29:50   It's difficult to find concrete info here, but in theory it isn't apples to apples, is it?"

01:29:55   I'm kind of sad that today's geek children didn't get to experience what was a staple of my early adult geek life, which was geeks arguing with each other over benchmarks.

01:30:11   Back in the times when it was 68K vs. PowerPC, x86 vs. 68K vs. PowerPC, RISC vs. CISC, Altivec vs. MMX. This is a whole subculture of comparing platforms and arguing about which CPUs are better than what.

01:30:29   And of course when it came time to argue about that, it was like everyone would pull out the benchmarks. And then it just became a meta-argument about, well, that benchmark is not realistic, it's not representative, that benchmark unfairly favors this particular architecture, and no real application does that.

01:30:43   It went on forever, arguing about the quality of benchmarks and how representative they were, and if it's artificial, and trying real-world applications. It never ended. But it meant that everyone was well-versed in the pluses and minuses of benchmarks.

01:31:01   And in this more modern post-iPhone era, people threw out Geekbench numbers, and no one ever argues about how applicable Geekbench or Spec or any of these other things are. No one ever says, "Oh, that doesn't count because that whole benchmark fits in the cache." No one ever talks about this stuff anymore. It's just not an issue.

01:31:17   So I'm going to say, this is why I give all this reflexive hemming and hawing every time we mention Geekbench, and no one seems to care about my hemming and hawing, and I never get any comments about it. I'm hemming and hawing because all benchmarks inherently are synthetic and non-representative in one way or another.

01:31:35   But all that said, from all the years you're arguing about how fair or unfair a particular benchmark is to a particular PowerBC or a particular Pentium or whatever, the upshot is that in general, benchmarks that are not made by someone who makes a CPU chip, like Intel didn't make the benchmark, AMD didn't make the benchmark, right?

01:31:54   These benchmarks are trying to be fair, and chips come and go, and the benchmarks more or less stay the same, so it's not like the benchmark even can be or is tweaked to be particularly favorable to one CPU or another.

01:32:07   It doesn't mean they're not vulnerable to edge cases where, "Oh, we've been running this benchmark for years, and CPU cache sizes kept getting bigger, and all of a sudden we crossed some threshold, and now this particular entire benchmark fits in the cache and it goes 10 times faster, and that's not representative of real-world stuff." So it's up to the Geekbench people to keep track of that.

01:32:24   But in general, all those caveats aside, I'm going to say the Geekbench, though it is not representative of any particular real-world application or your particular application, I'm not aware of any ARM versus x86 biases that would explain the massive performance differences we see between, like, let's say, Apple's phone and all of the Macs that they have ever sold in their entire lives.

01:32:46   So, yeah, you can quibble over the details, but I don't think that the benchmark is so unfairly biased that you should discount it. In general, you should give yourself some 5% margin one way or the other, so if they look at it close to each other, it's probably about a wash.

01:33:04   But I, for the most part, trust that they're an okay way to look at things.

01:33:10   Moving on, Glyn07 writes, "Can Marco give an update on the state of podcast market share? Is the equilibrium holding or is Spotify taking over the world?"

01:33:19   So it's hard to have an idea of, like, how do you measure podcast market share? Whose data do you use? Whose data is valid?

01:33:27   The best data that I know of that is publicly shared is Libsyn's numbers. I've mentioned this before, they do a show called The Feed that's kind of about podcasting and, like, helping people podcast and question everything, and every couple episodes of The Feed, they will do a stats breakdown of Libsyn's global stats for all shows hosted by Libsyn for a certain month.

01:33:49   And, you know, they'll do geography breakdowns, like which countries had the most downloads, they'll also do, like, type of device breakdowns and app breakdowns.

01:33:58   It isn't, like, the most perfect measure in the world because there's a whole lot of, like, really big shows that aren't hosted on Libsyn, so it's not, like, a perfect representative sample, but it's such a huge podcast host in general that I think it's the best data we have that's publicly shared.

01:34:17   So anyway, based on what they have reported, things are, we're kind of in equilibrium for the most part. Spotify is taking significant market share, I think they're up to something like 13% in the latest numbers, but it's mostly additive.

01:34:34   It has been mostly people who were not taken away from other apps, like people aren't leaving Apple Podcasts and Overcast, etc. in droves to go to Spotify to listen to podcasts. Instead, Spotify's existing audience is starting to listen to podcasts for the first time, adding to the market rather than taking away from other apps.

01:34:55   They are big, but they're also, because they aren't really taking away from the rest of us, it's not as much of an issue, and also, from what I understand, their market share is not, like, an average slice. It is not, like, an even slice out of the rest of the market or in addition to the rest of the market.

01:35:16   Certain demographics are very strong there, and certain ones are totally missing. In the worlds that I tend to play in, in nerds and tech podcasts, Spotify is basically nothing. Almost no one listens to shows like ours on Spotify, and almost none of the users of my app would be at risk of turning them to Spotify users instead.

01:35:37   So it doesn't really affect our corner of the internet here, but it still is a good deal of market share.

01:35:44   What about things like Luminary or whatever, those various pay services for podcasts? Those wouldn't show up on Libsyn stats or whatever, but...

01:35:52   Oh, they do! Luminary shows up as Libsyn stats of having something on the lines of 0.2% market share. So I'm not so worried about it. To be, as a point of comparison, Overcast hovers around 3%.

01:36:06   What was that? Wasn't there some other pay service?

01:36:09   There's Stitcher Premium and a couple others. Audible has some originals, but I don't know how they do. Stitcher does okay in general. I don't know how Stitcher Premium specifically does. But Stitcher is somewhere in the 2% range most of the time, I think.

01:36:23   Well, that's mostly good news, I'd say.

01:36:26   Yeah, I mean, it seems like things are pretty stable. Spotify is growing, that is significant, but we're fine. We're not really being touched by that in our corner of the internet over here. And so I think things are mostly holding pretty well.

01:36:45   And the Premium services sounds like they haven't... No Premium services even gotten the traction that Spotify has gotten.

01:36:51   Not even close, no. I mean, you could argue maybe Spotify is a Premium service in some ways, but they own Gimlet now. They do have a paid tier. They do have exclusive content. So in some ways, they are a Premium service, but not in the way that most people would discuss Premium podcasting services.

01:37:11   And that wouldn't show up. You can't pull that out of the 13% because you have no idea what percentage of that is their Premium stuff versus just people listening to regular podcasts and Spotify.

01:37:19   Right, all we know from this 13% is that is like among Libsyn hosted podcasts, which are public podcasts, among Libsyn hosted podcasts, Spotify has about 30% of their downloads.

01:37:31   Finally, Paul Donahue writes, "I do some very basic database and Excel work for a living, but I've been thinking about learning how to develop apps on the side for supplemental income. Since I want to force myself to be at my desk, I've been thinking about getting a Mac Mini, but it hasn't been updated since last year. Do you think I should wait until it gets refreshed, or would I be fine purchasing it now?"

01:37:47   You know, this is such a difficult question because up until there's a lot of smoke about something like, oh, I don't know, a 16-inch MacBook Pro, it seems like just about any time is a perfectly fine time to upgrade.

01:38:01   But when you wait as long as the Mac Mini has been, because it's been about a year, right, since it's been upgraded, like Paul said.

01:38:09   It has been almost exactly a year, a little bit more.

01:38:11   Yeah, so then I get to be a little nervous about recommending an upgrade. I would say, especially if you don't have a Mac already, just pull the trigger. It'll be fine. Maybe get it refurbished so you feel less bad if a new one comes out tomorrow.

01:38:25   But I would personally say pull the trigger. Marco, what's your two cents on this?

01:38:29   Normally I would say an Apple product that is a year old, you should probably wait. It's going to be updated soon. Not with the Mac Mini. I think it would be a miracle if the Mac Mini were updated after only one year.

01:38:45   It has never, even if it could ever be said to have had a Prime, which I don't think it ever did, but even in its Prime if it ever existed, it was never updated that frequently. So for the Mac Mini, only being a year old is actually kind of young still.

01:39:01   It's still a Spring Chicken or something. It's very, very new still for the Mac Mini. So I would say if you're going to get a Mac Mini, go ahead and get it now. You have a very low risk of it being updated anytime soon.

01:39:15   That being said, there is the question of whether a Mac Mini is really the best choice here.

01:39:22   Fair point.

01:39:23   And that's a more complicated question about what Paul's needs are, what any potential other priorities might be. Things like price or having certain equipment around. Paul says, "I want to force myself to be at my desk."

01:39:40   But I would say a decently specced Mac Mini is not that differently priced than an iMac. And an iMac is kind of a better computer in a lot of ways. So I would urge Paul to consider an iMac. Otherwise, a Mac Mini is fine and it's not at risk of being updated.

01:40:00   Well, you're with Marco. Don't wait around for a Mac Mini. Just buy it if you want to buy it, but consider an iMac.

01:40:10   And that's it for this week's show. I'm your host, Paul. I'll see you next week.

01:40:15   Now the show is over. They didn't even mean to begin. Cause it was accidental. Oh, it was accidental.

01:40:25   John didn't do any research. Marco and Casey wouldn't let him. Cause it was accidental. It was accidental.

01:40:36   And you can find the show notes at ATP.FM. And if you're into Twitter, you can follow them at C-A-S-E-Y-L-I-S-S.

01:40:50   So that's Casey List M-A-R-C-O-A-R-M-N-T Marco Arment S-I-R-A-C-U-S-A-C-R-A-Q-S-A. It's accidental. They didn't mean to. Accidental.

01:41:10   Tech podcast so long.

01:41:16   Did I tell you guys I blew my first tire? Yeah, we saw the pictures. We saw the tire of shame. Tell the tire of shame story. That's the best part.

01:41:24   This is pretty good. Oh, the wheel of shame. Sorry. Yeah, so I was taking a left turn onto a road with a median.

01:41:32   I took it slightly too tight and hit my rear left tire on the median on the inside. And instantly heard a big loud poof.

01:41:41   And then, and I was like, uh oh. And I was like, I was waiting for it, waiting for it. And then I see on the dashboard chime.

01:41:49   And low pressure warning, zero PSI. I'm like, oh no. And yeah, so I pulled into the parking lot.

01:41:59   And yeah, sure enough, completely flat tire and a huge gash in the side walls. I'm like, yeah, this is not going to be easily fixed.

01:42:08   So I didn't really know what to do. I've never had a flat tire before in my, geez, almost 20 years of driving. Actually, no, 21 years of driving.

01:42:18   I've never had a flat tire. I've driven hundreds of thousands of miles. Never had a tire. So I was like, alright, now what do I do?

01:42:26   So Tesla's, like many new cars, don't come with spare tires. There's nowhere to put it in the car. It just isn't there.

01:42:33   So I don't know what the regulations are, like if you have to have some kind of way to fix this.

01:42:40   But clearly you don't. Because you don't. What most cars do is when they don't come with a spare, they come with run flats.

01:42:46   But I guess you get neither. You get no spare and no run flats.

01:42:49   That's not always true. My Golf R has neither a spare nor run flats. It has a fix-a-flat kit that it came with that sits in the back.

01:42:57   Yeah, the little can. That's the hierarchy. But in general, unless there's a particular reason, I assume the reason your car is both to save weight and to save space that it doesn't come with.

01:43:08   Run flats tend to have worse performance and ride characteristics. So if it's a performance car, they don't want to have run flats on it. Corvette being accepted because America.

01:43:16   It's obviously not a law because you can do that, but I'm actually surprised that the, well, I don't know, kind of surprised that the Teslas don't have run flats. I guess I never thought about it before.

01:43:28   I know that a lot of the Teslas have harder tires for better mileage, right? But the performance models maybe less so. But you don't even have fix-a-flat anywhere that you're aware of. Casey, check his manual for him.

01:43:39   No, I don't. Unless it was in the front which was stuck shut, which is a different story. But anyway.

01:43:46   Oh, God. Oh, no, no, no. Now we're going to have to tell that story either now or later, but carry on.

01:43:50   We'll get there. So yeah, but what they do come with is roadside assistance that apparently is free. It was kind of cool actually. So I open up the app on my phone and you tap roadside assistance and you answer a couple of questions like, "What is it?"

01:44:04   Tires? Something else. And you hit tires. How many tires? One. Okay. And then it's like you submit the request and it's like, "We'll get back to you in a couple of minutes."

01:44:14   And sure enough, a couple of minutes after I submitted the request, I got this giant long text message series of like, "All right, vehicle is being dispatched from this company. It'll be there within 60 minutes and it'll have a loaner tire and wheel.

01:44:27   They will swap it on. They will bring your broken tire and wheel to the so-and-so service center, the nearest Tesla service center." It was great. And so sure enough, they said within 60 minutes, 20 minutes later, a guy shows up in a van with a wheel and a tire.

01:44:44   And he attaches it to my car. 25 minutes after I requested it, he's gone, he's done. I'm on the road again. It was kind of amazing. And the deal was the loaner that he gave me, it's the same. It's a Tesla wheel. It had a regular Tesla tire on it. Not a snow tire, okay, but a regular Tesla tire on it.

01:45:02   And it was, the rim of it was spray painted. It's like graffitied. I'll put the picture as the chapter right here. It was like graffitied with like red Tesla logos, like smeary Tesla drippy spray paint logos. It said Tesla Mount Kisco on the side. That's the dealership.

01:45:21   And the guy was saying that they actually just started doing this because people would just never return the loaner wheels. Because the deal is, they give you the loaner wheel and then you're supposed to schedule a service appointment at whatever dealership they brought your rim to and go buy a new tire.

01:45:39   Well, there's nothing really forcing you to do that, I guess. Like you sign a thing on the roadside assistance thing, but like, it doesn't seem that they enforce it. So like he said people just never return them. Because like why would you? It's going to cost you a couple hundred dollars to buy a new tire.

01:45:54   So like, you would just keep the loaner forever. So they spray painted it now to show, like to kind of remind you that it's the loaner wheel of shame. Like it looks horrendous. Like some guy on Twitter said it looked like I ran over a trick or treater. Which is fair.

01:46:11   Yeah, like again, go look at your podcast player which hopefully supports chapter art. If you're envisioning a tire that's like spray painted red and it looks like a regular wheel but it's a red wheel, it's not a red wheel. It is literally a Tesla silver wheel that someone has haphazardly taken like a can of Krylon and just randomly put crap all over it. It looks so bad.

01:46:33   Like it is not, they didn't try to make anything. The point of it is to look bad, I suppose. It kind of amazes me that this is like an actual real large company's solution to this problem. Can we just make them ugly? Yeah, sure. I can go down to the store and get a can of, I'll be there once or two.

01:46:52   Are they different colors? Is it color matched to his car because it is red and he's got a red car. It's just fascinating. Yeah, why wouldn't people, who's going to want to go and pay all that money? They just gave you a free tire and a wheel and people aren't thinking like, oh, well the tread wear is different and in your case it's not even a snow tire. They'll just keep driving it.

01:47:11   That said, I'm not sure the incredible spray paint will deter people because those same people who don't care that they have a mismatched tire with different tread wear might not also care that it's all spray painted red and they're meaning to go to it but they never get around to it.

01:47:24   Especially if, like say they have wheel damage, like say you had damaged your wheel on that median, the wheel is like $600 probably and the tire is like $300 on top of that or you could drive around with an ugly wheel.

01:47:36   Yeah, it totally makes sense why people don't frequently return these otherwise.

01:47:42   Yeah, and that's like when you have a spare tire, it's not the same wheel, it's a smaller thing and it looks ridiculous and still I see people driving around on their donuts. It's especially hilarious in this day and age when cars like every car, like the economy car for like $13,000 comes with 20 inch wheels or something ridiculous. Wheels have gotten so huge but the spares haven't kept up.

01:48:05   So if you have one of these little tiny things, it's like a roller skate wheel in this giant wheel well that fits 20 inch wheels. It's very strange. Anyway, don't replace single tires if you can help it and don't keep the wheel of shame.

01:48:19   (door slams)