288: Rich Person's Raspberry Pi


00:00:00   John in case you're arguing about Corvettes, I think, right? Yes, that's correct. I don't care about Corvettes at all. Anyway, yeah, I think I think it's the big thing poking through the hood and

00:00:09   As much as I dislike the glass thing, I like it better than the thing poking through. No, that's not unusual. I mean, that's basically like my dad's Z06 looks almost exactly like what you see on Wikipedia right here.

00:00:20   So yeah, it's not that different. I forget what makes the ZR1 a ZR1 in the C7 line. Supercharger! This is worse than Destiny.

00:00:30   Oh, no, it's not worse than Destiny. And no, the supercharger's in the Z06 as well. My dad's is a supercharged 650 horsepower behemoth.

00:00:35   No, once it goes mid-engine, maybe it won't be so darn ugly, but we'll see.

00:00:38   Brutal.

00:00:41   Is there, if you had to choose one era of Corvette, and you can give me years, you can give me C designation,

00:00:47   what era would you choose? And please don't cop out and say none of them. None of them.

00:00:52   I mean, you're a hoity-toity electric person. I can't even ask you this anymore. Even when I was a gassy person,

00:00:59   I still didn't like Corpus.

00:01:01   Funny, I'm still a gassy person.

00:01:04   Joe Hurley writes with yet another mechanism for getting your beloved photo book PDFs. So can you tell us about this, please?

00:01:11   Oh my god, this is the topic that won't die. It's just follow-up.

00:01:15   It's like a one-sentence thing and they double the length of this by complaining about it. So congratulations.

00:01:19   I was complaining about photos, how it was undiscoverable that you had to option click the buy book button.

00:01:24   But that was unfair to photos. If you do the regular file menu export, export book as PDF,

00:01:30   there is a checkbox at the bottom of that dialog.

00:01:32   And if you do like me and hit command D to go to desktop and hit return real fast and never look at that dialog,

00:01:37   you might miss it. But there is a much more obvious way to get the production PDF.

00:01:42   Just use the checkbox at the bottom of the open save dialog box when you do export.

00:01:46   Tell me about active versus passive Thunderbolt 3 cables. I presume this was within the context of CGP Grey's

00:01:53   fiasco trying to find Thunderbolt cables.

00:01:55   Yeah, I was giving vague

00:01:57   advice and warnings about cable length because I didn't have any any of the facts written down, but now I went and looked them up.

00:02:04   That sounds like research.

00:02:06   Yeah, well, it's not much of a look-up. It turns out that the length limits are in fact exactly half of a meter

00:02:12   for a passive cable if you want the full 40 gigabits per second transfer speed. So that's why the eGPU comes with

00:02:21   exactly half a meter cable. It's not arbitrary.

00:02:24   And it's a passive cable because they're cheaper. Passive means they don't have the little chips in the ends of them.

00:02:29   It's just like a bunch of wires and rubber and stuff. If you have an active cable,

00:02:33   you can get the full speed up to two meters in length.

00:02:36   So still you can't really have one that's 30 or 40 feet, but you can go two meters.

00:02:40   Yeah, so if Grey, if he's listening,

00:02:44   we should just tell him in a slack. If you want to put it under your desk and you want to get and you actually

00:02:48   think you need the full speed, you need to get an active cable, which will cost some obscene amount of money that will make you cry.

00:02:53   And if you use a passive cable, you will be halving the bandwidth, which may or may not make a difference depending on your application,

00:02:59   but just be aware.

00:03:01   All right, tell us about the graphing calculator versus grapher.

00:03:04   This was last week. We talked about the graphing calculator that comes with your Mac. Apparently Marco didn't know about it.

00:03:11   Did you not know about it either? I forget.

00:03:12   I didn't know. All right, anyway, and the original graphing calculator on the classic Mac OS and we linked to that cool story about it.

00:03:19   So two things about this one,

00:03:21   the story was also retold on This American Life if you're more into podcasts, which you may be if you're listening to this.

00:03:26   So we'll put a link in the show notes to the This American Life episode,

00:03:29   which I hope you can get. I know they like try to monetize their back catalog,

00:03:32   but and second, one of the authors, the main author, I don't know, Wikipedia credit the second person as well,

00:03:38   Ron Avitzer wrote in on Twitter to say that grapher and the current Mac OS is the spiritual successor to

00:03:46   to his application.

00:03:48   He says grapher used to be called Curvus Pro X or X before being acquired by Apple.

00:03:53   One of the Curvus authors told me that use graphing calculator as a feature checklist for inspiration, but no code is shared.

00:03:58   So it is not actually graphing calculator from the classic days. It is just merely inspired by it.

00:04:05   I would like to tease that there will be a little bit of quasi follow up in the after show section

00:04:11   because there is an entry in our after show section in the show notes that reads John's Bees Update.

00:04:18   I know a lot of people have been very excited to hear the update on the small yellow stripey things

00:04:24   situation. So that will be coming in the after show after the theme song provided by Jonathan Mann.

00:04:30   So stay tuned for that and don't touch your fast forward button because that's cheating.

00:04:35   Moving on. Good teaser. Thank you. I do what I can.

00:04:39   The world went aflutter, and by the world I mean our little corner of it, a couple of days ago when Mark Gurman and

00:04:47   Debbie Wu

00:04:48   wrote an article entitled "Apple is planning a new low-cost MacBook and

00:04:52   Be still our beating hearts, pro focused Mac mini."

00:04:59   My goodness, what is going on, gentlemen?

00:05:03   So let me give you a few poll quotes, which I think John actually polled, but I will take credit for.

00:05:08   Apple Inc will release a new low-cost laptop and a professional focused upgrade to the Mac mini desktop later this year ending a drought of Mac

00:05:15   computers that has limited sales of the company's longest running line of devices

00:05:18   according to people familiar with the plans. The new laptop will look similar to the current MacBook Air

00:05:22   but will include thinner bezels around the screen. The display, which will remain about 13 inches, will be a higher resolution

00:05:29   retina version that Apple uses on other products, the people said.

00:05:33   Apple is also planning the first upgrade to the Mac mini in about four years. For this year's Mac mini, Apple's focusing

00:05:39   primarily on these pro users, and new storage and processor options are likely to make it more expensive than the previous versions.

00:05:46   "Oh, Apple giveth and you taketh away," specifically all of our money. So Marco, how do we feel about this?

00:05:53   So I think we should actually take these separately, Mac mini and, you know, new entry-level laptops.

00:05:59   Sure.

00:06:00   I think the Mac mini is probably the less interesting one. So let's cover that first, maybe. So we'll build up. See, teaser.

00:06:07   Yeah, nicely done. After the break, we'll talk about the new MacBook Air replacement or whatever.

00:06:11   So first of all, I think just in general these, after I say let's take this separately, I'm going to give a general statement about both.

00:06:18   I think the

00:06:22   the information here is really thin, like there, and I don't mean the laptops, like it's really, this is not much information at all.

00:06:29   And so

00:06:31   chances are,

00:06:33   you know, German and sources that tend to feed German and people like him, but let's be honest, mostly him,

00:06:40   they tend to often get like the high-level overview bullet point facts correct, but anything involving

00:06:49   more detail or the story or the reasons or Apple's intentions is

00:06:54   usually ends up not being true or not panning out.

00:06:58   And so I would look at this very, very, in a very limited way to say, okay, you know,

00:07:03   the new laptops similar to the Air, you know, blah, blah, blah, you know, that's okay. That's fine.

00:07:08   So with German saying the Mac mini is gonna be like pro focused, that, that I don't buy as being reliable information.

00:07:15   Because that, like, whatever tipster he has,

00:07:19   it's probably, the information he got is probably, there's a new Mac mini update, like, and

00:07:24   yeah, it just so happens Mac minis are used by a wide variety of people, some of whom are pros or developers or

00:07:30   people running servers or headless things or whatever else, but like, I don't, that's probably not even the majority of the market. So,

00:07:36   you know, having that, having this be like, you know, a pro focused Mac mini and also likely to make it more expensive than previous versions,

00:07:45   he's not good at that kind of information. Like that, whenever he has rumors about that kind of information, it's usually wrong.

00:07:49   So I would say the only information we really have to talk about is that it sounds possible

00:07:55   that a new Mac mini is coming soon and

00:07:58   also a new small laptop is coming soon that is going to be similar in dimensions and screen as

00:08:07   a retina MacBook Air.

00:08:09   That I think is all we can really talk about.

00:08:11   Covering the Mac mini first,

00:08:14   I'm, it's, it's good news. I mean, we all, the Mac mini, again, it's never been updated frequently,

00:08:19   but this has been an especially long run and also the last update made it appreciably worse. So,

00:08:26   it's actually, it's actually been since 2012 that the Mac mini actually got better.

00:08:32   So that's kind of embarrassing on a number of levels.

00:08:36   I hope they do something really nice here.

00:08:39   It would be a, it would be a shock. Honestly, the Mac mini has always been used almost as punishment to Mac

00:08:45   owners and Mac developers.

00:08:48   Like it seems like Apple hates this product and they want us to know they hate this product and they hate people who, people who

00:08:54   buy this product and they will and they really don't want you to buy this product and they're not gonna even try to hide

00:08:58   that. That's always how it's appeared.

00:09:00   And that's not just Tim Cook, that Steve did the same thing under his reign. Like the Mac mini has always been really like a

00:09:05   punitive product.

00:09:08   And so I don't expect that to change.

00:09:10   Whatever they do here, it's probably not gonna be updated again for a very long time after that.

00:09:16   This, it's not gonna suddenly join a frequent update cycle because it never has been on one.

00:09:21   I also don't expect it to be a good, a good value at all. Now again, this isn't necessarily new.

00:09:27   I mean the Mac mini was originally advertised as like, you know, the $500 entry-level Mac,

00:09:32   but even, even when it was only $500 to start, for a while it went up and then the last one they brought it back

00:09:37   down. You couldn't get a good one for $500. Like you could, you could barely get a functioning one for that.

00:09:42   But if you actually expect it up to be somewhat useful as a general computer for most people, you were closer to a thousand.

00:09:48   Or at least like 800, you know, like you were definitely much higher than 500.

00:09:52   And so I expect that same trend to continue. Apple is really good these days, especially at

00:09:58   kind of ratcheting up the prices of everything over time and ratcheting up how much you actually have to spend to get what you want.

00:10:06   That's not going to change here. So people hoping for a good value here, you're going to be disappointed.

00:10:11   People hoping for the Mac mini to get on a good update cycle and become like a favored product.

00:10:17   That's never going to happen, you know.

00:10:18   So if you want simply a newer implementation of the same kind of BS story the Mac mini has always been,

00:10:25   which is it's useful, but it's going to be rarely updated and it's not going to be a good value,

00:10:31   then we're probably going to have that continued. I think people are going to project

00:10:36   onto this a whole lot of their wishes, especially like with the with the pro focused claim here.

00:10:41   People are going to think this is the modular Mac Pro, you know, that's not going to happen.

00:10:45   I got news for you, it's never going to happen.

00:10:47   But I hope they do something nice at least because it is pretty clear that we're probably, whatever they do,

00:10:54   we're probably going to be stuck with it for five years after.

00:10:56   So I hope it's good.

00:10:59   And like, you know, I have a Mac mini. I use it as, you know, a home server and a few other types of tasks.

00:11:05   I have the current model. It seems positively ancient to me, but it is still the current model.

00:11:12   So, you know, I wouldn't mind having better options in the future whenever that dies or if it needs to be upgraded.

00:11:18   And you know, I know a lot, the Mac mini is an important product in their lineup in the sense that like,

00:11:24   it does serve a lot of roles. It patches over a lot of holes, a lot of things that you just need a

00:11:29   headless Mac to do. But I would caution fans,

00:11:34   don't get your hopes too far up about this because I wouldn't expect a major change to what the Mac mini story has always been.

00:11:41   It's an interesting alignment of the original incarnation of the Mac mini and

00:11:46   Tim Cook's Apple before the April Mac Pro event in that the original

00:11:52   incarnation was like,

00:11:55   bring your own monitor and keyboard and stuff. Buy a Mac mini and you now you can use the monitor that you have, the keyboard

00:12:02   you have, the mouse you have. That was the whole point of it. That you could buy a Mac that

00:12:04   literally did not come with any of that stuff. It was just a little, you know, puck thingy or whatever, right? And that model of

00:12:13   like buying just the computer and adding your peripherals was something that Apple was on the path to do when it was

00:12:22   stopped selling its own monitors basically and

00:12:25   you know, was still selling a Mac Pro. It's like, well if I buy your Mac Pro, buy this trash can,

00:12:30   what am I supposed to hook it up to? You're not selling monitors anymore.

00:12:33   It's like, oh bring your own monitor because this is for people who, you know, know enough about computers to either

00:12:38   have their own stuff or have particular needs. They have something to have some special monitor setup that they have or whatever and

00:12:44   everything I just described, the idea of buying a computer and then buying your own peripherals or already having them,

00:12:50   maybe it's not a pro thing, but it's part of the reason that the Mac mini was not

00:12:56   really, did never really fill, it didn't do a good job of filling the role of the entry-level Mac because yeah, it was cheap,

00:13:02   but then you have immediately these other questions. Well, what monitor do I use? What keyboard do I use? What mouse do I use?

00:13:08   How do I hook it all up together?

00:13:09   It's kind of like the contrast of the old iMac ads, like you just take it out of the box, plug in the power and

00:13:14   the mouse and keyboard and you're done.

00:13:16   It's all in one package as opposed to the PC with all the wires coming. Not that it's a huge hurdle for people to

00:13:21   buy input devices and a monitor, but it's just more decisions

00:13:23   they have to make and the whole point of the Apple stuff is supposed to just go in there and get what you want.

00:13:27   So it was never, it never really filled, I'm not gonna,

00:13:30   I don't know how to describe it, but like whatever the opposite of pro is,

00:13:34   the Mac mini was not good at filling that other than the fact that it had a cheap price.

00:13:37   So an actual pro-focused Mac mini, whether it is a real thing or not,

00:13:42   would make sense because it would acknowledge the fact that especially today,

00:13:46   the only people who want to buy a computer and then buy their own peripherals and then use their own monitor are

00:13:52   probably computer nerds, like people are into computers at the very least, right? The entry-level computers,

00:13:58   you know, first of all, computers now are laptops,

00:14:00   so desktops are already out of the mainstream, right? And laptops come with everything you need already built in, right?

00:14:05   And Apple has a bunch of them and we'll talk about them in a little bit.

00:14:08   But it's by definition, almost every desktop computer is kind of a pro-focused machine and since the price has been crawling up on this,

00:14:15   since Apple loves to charge high prices,

00:14:17   one way they could do it is sort of admit that the Mac mini is not the cheapest way to get into a Mac.

00:14:24   Like, whatever they do with low-cost laptops, let's assume there's still a laptop that's $1,000,

00:14:28   there's no way you're gonna get a reasonable

00:14:31   Mac mini plus monitor plus mouse plus keyboard for $1,000.

00:14:36   You probably can't even do that today with the crappy one,

00:14:39   due to the prices, like Marco said, you always want, you don't want the base model,

00:14:42   you always want the one with a couple things added to it. So,

00:14:44   why not just lean into that and make a Mac mini that is more expensive than most of the laptops?

00:14:51   And it's like, yeah, this is for people who

00:14:53   want to have a desktop Mac, but they want to have a separate monitor and keyboard and mouse or whatever,

00:14:59   and it costs $1,300 or $1,500 to get the one you want.

00:15:04   And, you know, at least that's a kind of a more honest

00:15:08   rendition of the Mac mini. And I was saying it fits into the

00:15:13   Tim Cook model of doing things because it was under his reign that they decided we don't need to sell

00:15:17   Wi-Fi routers and monitors, people will just bring their own stuff to it. Of course, that has been reversed now,

00:15:24   because I guess consumer demand to say,

00:15:27   we'd really like to buy an Apple monitor because it takes away one decision that we don't have to worry about anymore.

00:15:31   So don't sell us Mac Pros without having an extra monitor and have, you know,

00:15:35   partner with LG and have us deal with the monitor that Marco spent the last show complaining about.

00:15:40   That's not a satisfactory experience. That's not an Apple-like experience, even for

00:15:44   Pro customers. So I

00:15:46   can see how this

00:15:49   analysis of the Germs thing of focusing on Pro users is something that could come into someone's mind.

00:15:57   Because it would be much harder to write a story that says, "Oh, they're gonna update the Mac mini," and it will be focused on,

00:16:02   you know, casual consumers. How is that even possible?

00:16:05   The Mac mini can't be focused on casual consumers, casual consumers buy laptops.

00:16:10   So I'm not sure how they're gonna make sense of this line. Marco's very

00:16:14   conservative vision of, guess what, it's gonna be a new Mac mini with better internals and they're not gonna update it for four years.

00:16:20   Probably, like that would work fine.

00:16:23   My difficulty of believing a Pro thing is what, besides everything I just listed,

00:16:28   how do you make a Mac mini

00:16:31   Pro? Like,

00:16:33   you put a Xeon in it? Do you put a really, really fast SSD in it?

00:16:37   You don't have room for a good GPU in there.

00:16:39   So how do you even make it Pro, other than saying,

00:16:42   "We're just gonna increase the price and acknowledge that only computer nerds buy this computer."

00:16:46   Well, I mean, I think they could, you know, similarly to how the laptops don't have Xeons or ECC RAM or things like that,

00:16:55   in the way that the current Mac mini, when it was released, was basically the guts of the 13-inch Air or

00:17:03   MacBook Pro, depending on which CPU you got,

00:17:05   the new Mac mini could also be basically the guts of the 13-inch laptop. The new quad-core 28-watt chips, a

00:17:12   T2 with SSD only options in there,

00:17:15   that could be really nice and really fast. And the Mac mini used to be quad-core back in 2012,

00:17:21   you know, before they updated it to make it worse.

00:17:23   So that's not totally unheard of and

00:17:26   they wouldn't even need to go to the, like back then, that was a higher wattage chip. Now they could fit this 28-watt chip

00:17:32   in there and have roughly the same cooling capacity the current one has and be totally fine. So,

00:17:36   if they basically just make it a desktop version of the new 13-inch MacBook Pro, that's really nice. And that, I think,

00:17:45   would be very, very welcome. Like, I think, you know, there's gonna be price complaints, of course, but besides price complaints,

00:17:54   that would make most Mac mini fans very happy, I think.

00:17:58   And if it's Thunderbolt 3, you could buy an eGPU for it and there is your way to get,

00:18:03   I don't know, I'm gonna say gaming performance out of it, but you can't put a good GPU in there,

00:18:08   but you can have an external one that's okay as long as your cable is half a meter or less.

00:18:12   It also serves a whole bunch of like, you know, little ancillary rules because of how many ports it has. Like, you know,

00:18:19   I know modern Apple is gonna love taking away ports, especially on a small machine like this.

00:18:24   But like the current Mac mini, like the reason I'm using mine right now in my entertainment center and I'm using it,

00:18:30   it's constantly running an audio hijack

00:18:32   graph to process the audio that goes to my TV in various ways and combine it and boost the base and stuff like that. And

00:18:39   so I'm using, it has optical in and out through the line in/line out,

00:18:43   hybrid optical/analog ports, which every Mac used to have and they've been removing them on all of them.

00:18:50   But like it has optical in and out/analog in and out. It has four USB ports. It has HDMI.

00:18:56   I'm using all of them. I'm using all four USB ports. I'm using the HDMI port.

00:19:00   I'm using the optical in and the optical out. Like it's a great, it has so much, the only ports

00:19:05   I'm not using on there are the Thunderbolt ports.

00:19:07   But like it's, it's so great because of all that versatility. And again, like because the Mac mini is

00:19:15   used to kind of fill in a whole bunch of specialized needs and specialized gaps,

00:19:20   I really hope they don't skimp on the ports because what this computer needs more than anything is

00:19:26   the versatility to cover as many edge cases as possible.

00:19:30   The other thing to go back to what Jon was saying about how is this a pro computer?

00:19:36   I wouldn't put it past Apple to say, "Look, these specs match our MacBook Pros. Thus, it's a pro computer."

00:19:44   Why? How could it possibly be better? Now the reality of the situation is, you're exactly right Jon, that

00:19:50   by any reasonable metric, something that matches a 13-inch MacBook Pro,

00:19:55   but in a desktop configuration, that is far, a far far cry from a pro desktop.

00:20:00   But I don't think it would be difficult for Apple to just pitch it as pro simply because the specs match

00:20:07   another thing that they say is pro.

00:20:08   Is it really a far cry? Like if you look at pretty much anything but CPU performance

00:20:14   and GPU performance, the other specs of the new 13-inch MacBook Pro

00:20:20   are really like, you know, general performance, CPU, like single-thread performance, SSD performance.

00:20:26   Those are all really competitive with even the iMac Pro.

00:20:30   That's fair. That's fair.

00:20:31   Like, you know, if they can call the laptop pro, which admittedly, you know, that's mostly marketing,

00:20:36   but like, but they call the 13-inch MacBook a MacBook Pro and no one's like, "Well, that's not..."

00:20:41   Well, actually people do complain about this, but like, you know, people who...

00:20:45   Most Apple fans and customers look at that and like, you know, we don't complain like,

00:20:49   they shouldn't use the word pro because it doesn't have a Xeon.

00:20:52   Like, that's an artificial distinction.

00:20:54   No, we say it because it doesn't have an SD card slot.

00:20:57   Yes. And USB-A ports.

00:20:59   I take your point. I take your point, but I mean, people are absolutely complaining and moaning

00:21:04   about how pro the MacBook Pros are. People including the three of us.

00:21:07   But nevertheless, you do make a good point that especially in SSD performance and in CPU performance,

00:21:12   it's actually... I should have chosen my words more carefully earlier.

00:21:15   It actually is not that far away from a pro machine. You are correct.

00:21:19   So another way they could go with this, and it's a rumor that we talked about a while before this pro thing came out,

00:21:24   although you could still apply it, but again, pro could mean anything.

00:21:26   So computer nerds, computer nerds who like to have computers all over the house,

00:21:30   kind of a person like Marco who would connect a Mac to his television to do God knows what he's doing

00:21:35   because he doesn't want to have a receiver or whatever, right?

00:21:36   Yep.

00:21:37   Something else that they like and something else that some computer nerds we know have already purchased is

00:21:42   a really, really small computer that's about the size of the Apple TV.

00:21:46   You've got the Intel NUC thing or however you pronounce it.

00:21:48   Various Raspberry Pis that Marco has also played with.

00:21:51   So prior musings in the many year drought between Mac mini updates are like,

00:21:56   "I wonder if the next Mac mini will basically be Apple TV sized because it would be really, really mini.

00:22:02   You know, they don't need the optical disk anymore. They could make it smaller if they wanted to."

00:22:05   If Apple introduced a computer like that, could you consider that?

00:22:10   Oh, that's obviously a pro thing, mostly because using pro here is a synonym for computer nerd

00:22:15   because who's actually going to buy a puck size computer except for somebody who is a computer nerd

00:22:20   and likes to have computers all over their house, right?

00:22:22   I think that would be a direction that the Mac mini could go.

00:22:26   It would satisfy a different subset of the Mac mini people.

00:22:30   I think the problem with trying to aim for the smaller market is, you know,

00:22:34   first of all, people who buy Mac minis for the most part.

00:22:38   I mean, there are going to be a few exceptions like people who make hosting companies out of them.

00:22:41   But for the most part, people who buy Mac minis largely don't have the problem of this thing is too big.

00:22:47   You know, so like making it smaller, while I'm sure Johnny would love to design that small little box

00:22:53   that will exclude everything you actually need to run the thing because it'll make the box smaller.

00:22:57   Besides that little obsession, I don't see why it serves Mac mini customers to make it unnecessarily smaller.

00:23:06   Now, that's not to say they can't make it smaller just by technological advancement,

00:23:09   but if they start making it so small that they, for example, can't use fast CPUs.

00:23:16   Like if they make it so small that they have to use like the 12-inch MacBook CPU,

00:23:20   those little 5-watt things that suck, you know, that is not really serving the market very well.

00:23:25   If they have to, you know, cut off a whole bunch of ports on the back and only have like two USB-C ports for the whole thing,

00:23:31   like that's not serving the market very well either.

00:23:33   What this market needs is versatility.

00:23:35   And while it would be nice to get it even super, super smaller, like if you look at the back of the current one,

00:23:42   it's crammed full of ports.

00:23:44   There's not that much space you could save by modernizing this thing unless you significantly reduce the cooling capacity inside

00:23:53   and significantly reduce the ports on the back.

00:23:56   And I don't think either of those would be serving it well.

00:23:59   If you give it enough bulk to have a nice CPU in it, maybe like from the 13-inch line like it has now,

00:24:05   if you kind of keep that thermal class of it, which would then keep the performance class and allow it to have these new awesome quad-core chips,

00:24:11   then you're going to have an enclosure big enough, bigger than the Intel NUC thing,

00:24:16   and you're going to have an enclosure big enough that you can have a good amount of ports on it.

00:24:19   Yeah, the puck thing would serve a subset of the many customers, but it's like how big is that subset?

00:24:24   It's probably pretty small, and arguably that subset has never been well served by the Mini.

00:24:29   The only reason they use it is because it is literally the smallest Mac you can buy. It's not a laptop, right?

00:24:33   They have no choice.

00:24:35   It's also a much lower end line. The NUC and everything, those super low power, super cheap PCs,

00:24:40   those are very inexpensive with low powered parts, low performance stuff, low specs.

00:24:45   Apple's not really... They've never gone for that with the Mac Mini, and I don't see them doing it now.

00:24:50   It's more likely that they're going to keep it at the $700 to $800 to $1000 price points,

00:24:56   and you just can't sell one of those class hardware boxes for $800, no matter how much Apple tries, and they know that.

00:25:04   Apple could. They just make the case out of solid gold.

00:25:07   Well, then it would cost more than that.

00:25:10   I see them sticking with... Certainly not going down market, if anything going up market.

00:25:17   So here's a question for... And again, I don't think they're doing the puck based on this rumor,

00:25:22   because I don't think they would characterize that as pro. It's just a different kind of computer, I think.

00:25:26   But assuming they don't do a puck, and they do some kind of fairly traditional Mac Mini of some stripe,

00:25:32   will it be physically larger or smaller than the current Mac Mini?

00:25:37   Oh, I think it'll be smaller. I just don't think it'll be a ton smaller.

00:25:40   I agree.

00:25:41   One question is, does it need to be square?

00:25:44   From the top down view, does it need to be square? Because maybe they can make it...

00:25:48   If it's not a perfect square, maybe they can cram... Well, who am I?

00:25:51   I was going to say maybe they can cram more ports in the back, but no, it's Apple.

00:25:54   It's a triangle.

00:25:55   It's Apple. They're going to shrink it down to a smaller square and just cut all the ports off.

00:25:58   Yeah, let's be realistic here what they're going to do.

00:26:01   But I hope they don't.

00:26:03   If they're going to shrink it, I feel like they could save a lot of room by ditching all the USB-A and replacing them with USB-C/Thunderbolt.

00:26:10   What else could they ditch? I don't even know what's in the back of the Mac Mini.

00:26:13   If you look in the back, they can lose the SD slot and scoot some things over. The vent kind of gets in the way, though.

00:26:19   Did you just advocate getting rid of an SD card slot in anything? Are you feeling okay?

00:26:24   In the context of a desktop computer...

00:26:27   I'm worried about you.

00:26:28   ...especially one that is aimed at the kind of markets the Mac Mini is used in, I don't think it needs an SD slot.

00:26:37   It would be nice to have one, just again, for the versatility needs of maybe some buyers need it sometimes.

00:26:42   But I would say it's less important on this than it is on a laptop that you are out somewhere and all of a sudden need one.

00:26:49   It's very different when you have a desktop.

00:26:51   I don't know if I agree with you, and the reason I say that is because I think you and I, and possibly John,

00:26:58   tend to think of the Mac Mini as an accessory Mac in the same way that, say, my MacBook Adorable is an accessory Mac,

00:27:04   and my iMac that I'm talking to you through right now is my primary machine.

00:27:08   But I would argue that for a fair number of people that the Mac Mini may be their only Mac,

00:27:14   maybe their primary Mac, especially people potentially who are switching from PCs and have keyboards and mice and monitors and so on and so forth.

00:27:21   And for them, an SD card slot would be useful.

00:27:24   And I guess that's part of the conundrum of the Mac Mini is, what is this computer?

00:27:29   The three of us were just discussing, is it the sort of thing that a NUC would handle where it's relatively low-powered,

00:27:34   not exceedingly fast, but physically very small and can be put anywhere to do any number of things,

00:27:40   almost like a rich person's Raspberry Pi or something.

00:27:43   And that's certainly something the Mac Mini can do and does do, but it's not the only thing it can do.

00:27:49   And it can serve for some as their only computer, but I think you're right, Marco, that certainly anyone that I've spoken to,

00:27:56   it tends to not serve as a primary computer as much as it serves as an accessory or secondary computer.

00:28:03   In which case, then yeah, the SD card slot should go, but I don't have any idea what the usage patterns are in the aggregate for the Mac Mini.

00:28:12   And to be clear, I'm not saying they should remove it. I'm saying they could remove it,

00:28:17   and I think it would have less negative impact than moving anything else on here.

00:28:22   I think what they will remove is the audio in jack, which is a shame.

00:28:27   Of course.

00:28:28   It's the last Mac sold that has an audio in jack, and you know, people use that.

00:28:33   I really hate that trend where they got rid of all the audio inputs that are built in.

00:28:38   I'm somebody who owns lots of audio input peripherals.

00:28:42   I don't usually need it, but sometimes I do, and it's really nice to have, and I'm using it on my current Mac Mini.

00:28:50   So I think what they are likely to do if they update the port situation,

00:28:55   is that obviously they're going to replace the Thunderbolt 2 ports with Thunderbolt 3 USB-C ports.

00:28:59   That's a given.

00:29:01   There is an open question of whether they would also have any USB-A ports on it.

00:29:05   The iMac Pro does. I hope the iMac Mini would for the same reason, that they have the space, and it's useful.

00:29:12   So they might as well keep USB-A if they can.

00:29:15   And otherwise, I wouldn't expect, you know, I think the argument for having a hardware HDMI port is as strong as it's ever been for these.

00:29:24   They justified having it on the previous model.

00:29:27   I think the new model should also have a hardware HDMI port.

00:29:30   USB-C HDMI dongles are not good enough and are not reliable enough, so it still needs that.

00:29:35   And I hope it still has audio in and out, although I'm pretty sure it won't.

00:29:39   At least not in.

00:29:41   Other than that, you know, I really am curious to see, but I really hope they err on the side of more versatility for this product,

00:29:51   rather than trying to make the tiniest thing possible that has no ports.

00:29:55   Here's how to most comprehensively ruin this thing.

00:29:58   You mentioned perhaps having the internals of the 13-inch MacBook Pro.

00:30:03   So make a Mac Mini that on the back of it has power, two Thunderbolt 3 ports, and a headphone jack.

00:30:10   It's basically a MacBook Escape with no monitor or keyboard or trackpad.

00:30:17   Yay! And keep it expensive and keep it relatively large.

00:30:21   So it's no good for the people who wanted a puck, and for the people who currently have a Mac Mini,

00:30:25   it is the total dongle-town punishment thing that you could miss.

00:30:30   It's like, you got all this room back there, and there's no HDMI, there's no Ethernet, there's no USB-A, there's no audio in, there's no SD.

00:30:38   It's like, yeah, it's like a 13-inch MacBook Pro. It's awesome, right guys? Everyone loves it?

00:30:41   Sorry, there wasn't any room for any other ports.

00:30:44   Yeah, see, and this is, I'm so, as I mentioned in the last few episodes, like, I'm so curious to see whatever the next, like, newly redesigned Mac is from Apple.

00:30:56   Because we don't know what direction they've taken. We don't know, like, if when they released all the USB-C generation of stuff, you know, two years ago, and there was a whole lot of negative feedback,

00:31:07   we don't know, did they take that to heart? Did they change course? All we have is the iMac Pro, which is a great signal in the right direction.

00:31:15   But we don't know yet what they're doing to the other products, and whether they're actually, you know, considering a lot of this user feedback they've gotten,

00:31:23   or whether they're just going to keep yelling at us that a small number of USB-C ports is the answer and the only thing we need.

00:31:29   Whatever Mac Mini is being, you know, shipped this fall, allegedly, was probably designed after that feedback came in.

00:31:38   Oh, you really? I think they might have started redesigning it as soon as they released the last one. It's like painting the Golden Gate Bridge. It just takes them four years to design one of these, because there's just one guy doing it all the work himself.

00:31:47   Maybe. Well, if that one guy hasn't changed, then maybe he'll keep it really good.

00:31:52   Maybe he doesn't know about USB-C yet.

00:31:54   Yeah.

00:31:55   Oh, goodness.

00:31:56   He's off on some remote island somewhere.

00:31:59   Right.

00:32:00   Yeah, no, I mean, so I really want to see both, you know, this new laptop, which we'll talk about in a few minutes, and this new Mac Mini, just for the sense of, like, what's different?

00:32:11   Like, you know, if they don't actually change the external case at all, and they just do a spec bump, first of all, for the Mac Mini, that'd be totally fine.

00:32:19   If that's all they do, that's totally fine, Apple. That's better than nothing, all right?

00:32:24   But, you know, that I think won't be a sign of a whole lot of, you know, input on this subject.

00:32:31   But if we see an entirely new case design for either of these products, that I think is a useful signal for where the rest of the things might be going that could help us judge whether they're on the right track or not.

00:32:44   It can't really be surprising, though, can it? I mean, when has Apple lately, anyway, done anything but make it thinner, lighter, and fewer ports?

00:32:52   The iMac Pro.

00:32:53   I mean, we're still saying it could be thinner, it could be lighter, it could have fewer ports, but it can have just two Thunderbolt 3 USB-C ports.

00:33:01   Like, there's fewer ports, and then there's, like, no ports, right?

00:33:05   So, fewer, like, what we, you know, Mark was already saying he's willing to give up the SD card. That seems reasonable.

00:33:10   I think if we lose all the USB-A, that's not great, but it's not the end of the world.

00:33:13   But if you lose Ethernet and HDMI out of some misguided sense of purity, that's just stupid.

00:33:19   All right, any other thoughts on the Phantom Mac Mini?

00:33:22   Is everyone going to buy one? I guess, Marco, will you buy one if it has audio input?

00:33:28   It won't. And honestly, my current Mac Mini is fine.

00:33:31   So, when my current Mac Mini dies, or if I ever need a second one, I would definitely buy another one.

00:33:37   Like, I'm not, like, the reason I use a Mac Mini, I don't see those reasons going away for the foreseeable future.

00:33:45   So, as long as I need some kind of headless Mac running these, you know, accessory tasks for me in my house, it's going to be a Mac Mini in all likelihood.

00:33:53   But at the same time, I have no reason to upgrade my current one yet, so I would probably not buy one immediately.

00:33:58   Casey, would you buy one? No, I have no need for one.

00:34:01   Interestingly, I've never owned one, and I think the main reason I wouldn't get one now is that the Apple TV does a pretty good job of what I might use a Mac Mini for.

00:34:10   I'm not going to use it as obviously my desktop, and we're not going to use it as my wife's desktop, and all my kids demand laptops because that's what computers are, so why the hell wouldn't they want a laptop, right?

00:34:19   And so the only place left I really have it is some kind of home server or something like that.

00:34:23   Well, home server, my Synology handles, and TV-connected box, my Apple TV handles.

00:34:28   My Apple TV can run Plex and Infuse, Plex with transcoding happening on the server and Infuse with transcoding happening on the Apple TV.

00:34:36   And they read files from my Synology, which serves as my home file server thingy.

00:34:40   So there's really no place in my computing life for a machine like the Mac Mini.

00:34:46   If I didn't have an Apple TV, then this would be a way for me to buy an Apple product that let me have a thing connected to my TV that's less trouble and theory to deal with than a Raspberry Pi or a NUC or whatever.

00:34:58   But I do have an Apple TV. I think the Apple TV is, the current one is fairly powerful and as thin as the TV OS apps may be, like there's not a lot of them and they're not great,

00:35:10   there's enough of the important ones, particularly Plex and an app like Infuse and all the various iOS ports applications, let me watch Hulu and Netflix and all that stuff.

00:35:20   That's enough for me for a TV connected to box. So Apple may have cannibalized that market with the increasing power of the Apple TV.

00:35:28   And I'm kind of afraid to compare the CPU power of the current Apple TV with the current Mac Mini.

00:35:34   But if they keep, like the Apple TV has been getting more updates than the Mac Mini, which is not saying much, but still it has been.

00:35:40   At a certain point, the Apple TV is probably going to be faster than even this new Mac Mini.

00:35:45   So it doesn't have much appeal for me, which, you know, is kind of a shame because I feel like I'm the type of computer nerdy person who should be interested in the Mac Mini.

00:35:56   But so far, no.

00:35:57   1406 days as we record since the Mac Mini has been updated. The 16th of October, 2014. To put things in perspective, I didn't have any children then.

00:36:11   I was only a couple of weeks away from having a child, but I did not have children when the Mac Mini was updated.

00:36:19   And now you've got two.

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00:38:20   Okay, so the other thing that Gurman spoke about, it was the don't call it a MacBook Air, MacBook Air thing.

00:38:32   So to reread the quote, the new laptop will look similar to the current MacBook Air, but will include thinner bezels around the screen.

00:38:39   The display, which will remain about 13 inches, will be a high resolution retina version that Apple uses on other products.

00:38:44   The people said.

00:38:45   I love their dumb style guide.

00:38:47   I intentionally leave in those the people said things because they're so hilarious.

00:38:51   So you always know we're reading a Bloomberg quote when we have the people said.

00:38:55   Yeah, indeed. So I don't know. I've been thinking a fair bit about this and I have come to no good conclusions about what Apple is going to do.

00:39:07   And Gruber posted just a little while before we recorded a really good summary of what he thinks will happen, which I'm sure we'll end up talking about.

00:39:16   But I try to think of what is my fantasy like low cost Apple laptop that's in the spirit of the air.

00:39:27   And I think what that basically amounts to is the MacBook adorable with another port.

00:39:32   And maybe that's it. Now, I'll be the first to tell you the likelihood of that hitting the thousand dollar price point that it seems the air needs to hit is unlikely.

00:39:41   It doesn't seem like you can get a MacBook adorable unless they just give it a hilariously small SSD.

00:39:48   I don't think you're going to be able to find a MacBook adorable for a thousand dollars.

00:39:52   Why is that, though? That was the Gruber wrote about that in the thing, too, how the MacBook never really came down in price.

00:39:58   And so it's like, well, so obviously it can't be that because that's that's an expensive product.

00:40:02   Is what should it be that expensive? Like I'm looking at like, well, there are certain things about it.

00:40:08   So like so I have I have a whole bunch of points I want to hit here.

00:40:12   So maybe I'll go into this now because it kind of gets into that.

00:40:14   I think one of the reasons why that is so expensive is that it is more expensive to make things super tiny in some ways.

00:40:23   Like they have to have probably tire tolerances on a lot of the metal.

00:40:26   They're probably more more complicated machining on that metal.

00:40:29   They have that weird terraced battery in there because they can't use like regular sized cells because they won't fit.

00:40:34   So there are things about making something that small that probably do require it to be more expensive.

00:40:40   My biggest my biggest point here is that Apple needs to be willing to break the pattern that they've had for a while where the smallest device in a family is also the cheapest.

00:40:54   When this pattern was established, you know, 10 years ago, whatever, whatever it's been, the range of sizes of laptops was it was a much smaller range.

00:41:03   And a lot of by the way, a lot of this applies to iPhones, too.

00:41:06   But, you know, the range of sizes of laptops that you had, you know, say 10 years ago was like, you know, 13 to 15 inch.

00:41:14   Basically, there was briefly the 12 inch PowerBook, which is an exception to this, although the 12 inch was indeed a PowerBook, which was like the MacBook Pro line.

00:41:23   It was not the iBook. The iBook, which was the value line, was 13 to 14 inches back then.

00:41:28   But anyway, so, you know, back when the assumption that the smallest could be the cheapest was established, the range was the range of sizes was a lot smaller.

00:41:38   Even the smallest models back then were still highly versatile.

00:41:44   They still had almost all the ports of the big ones. They had almost all the abilities.

00:41:48   And they were still very good for pretty much any general purpose needs.

00:41:52   The capabilities of the smallest model were not that different from the capabilities of the biggest model.

00:41:59   The main differences were about what were basically screen size and possibly like, you know, GPU type abilities.

00:42:06   But there were not that many differences between the laptops.

00:42:09   And also, like, their size and weight range wasn't that big either.

00:42:13   You know, like it was they were they were three the two or three very fairly similar sizes that had fairly similar capabilities.

00:42:21   And all of them were kind of mass market friendly, general purpose friendly, and were very versatile to lots of different needs.

00:42:29   Today, though, through a combination of technological progress and also just making a lot more compromises,

00:42:38   today the smallest in the lineup has gotten way smaller than what used to be the smallest.

00:42:45   And between the smallest and the biggest, there's a much wider range than there has been in the past of capabilities, performance, and versatility.

00:42:54   The difference between the smallest and even the next one up is a huge difference now.

00:43:00   And so the assumption that the smallest needs to be the cheapest is actually bad for both sides.

00:43:08   It's bad for the small products in the sense that lots of people buy the small products not because they're the cheapest, but because they're the smallest.

00:43:16   They're people who would spend money on something that maybe had higher specs.

00:43:20   But if the smallest has to also be the cheapest, then it has to cut corners and cut costs and not have all the nice specs,

00:43:27   not even have some of them even available as options, because it has to be the cheapest model and they have to, you know, cut corners as a result.

00:43:33   And it's also not good for the buyers because now the smallest models require such extreme compromises

00:43:42   and have such extreme and controversial engineering and practicality decisions about them

00:43:48   that a lot of people who just don't want to buy or can't buy one of the more expensive ones end up buying whatever the cheapest one is,

00:43:57   even if it's super not fitting their needs. And that's one of the reasons why the existing MacBook Air, which has been around forever,

00:44:05   is still being sold and is still selling pretty well and people still buy it a lot.

00:44:09   Because if you go into an Apple store with like $1100 and you want to walk out of there with a Mac,

00:44:15   your options are pretty poor and if you look at what you get for your money with the MacBook Air versus what you get for your money with the 12 inch or the touch bar or the escape,

00:44:25   you know, it's kind of no contest. So Apple needs a new differentiation and market segmentation strategy that doesn't rely on small size

00:44:37   to create an entry level price or to make cheaper products. And they also, you know, they've been, their strategy so far for the last, you know, while has been,

00:44:47   "Oh, just sell old models." And the old models would be our entry level price. And I think that strategy is not aging very well either.

00:44:54   The market's getting kind of tired of that, honestly, especially as the old models get older. So selling the old models as the cheap models,

00:45:04   I think that that time has passed that that's a good idea. And again, selling the smallest model as the entry level model, I think the technology has changed such that

00:45:14   the smallest model is now so small that that's very compromised and that's no longer suitable to be a mass market machine.

00:45:21   So the good thing is, I think Apple has seen this too. I think they figured this out too. And that's why I think we have the, especially the biggest signal for this is the new inexpensive iPad.

00:45:33   The 329 iPad that came out last year was updated this year. You know, it used to be that the cheapest iPad was the iPad mini. And they sold a whole bunch of iPad minis to schools and business and stuff,

00:45:44   not because they wanted the smallest iPad, but because they wanted the cheapest iPad. And it turned out that Apple could make a cheaper, better one. And they made a full size one.

00:45:54   It wasn't the smallest one. And it's way better than the iPad mini, partly because they've not updated it. But put that aside for a moment. You know, that 329 iPad is a really good deal.

00:46:05   It's inexpensive. They found ways to differentiate it from the iPad Pro, which costs almost twice as much, because there were lots of features added in the meantime that high end buyers wanted that low end buyers didn't care about things like the pencil support the fancy display the bunch of speakers, stuff like that the faster processors.

00:46:24   So anyway, they found ways to cut the price without selling either ancient models, or just the tiniest one they have. There's also signs in the rumor mill about them doing this with the iPhone lineup that apparently this fall, one of the iPhones is going to be this like LCD kind of mid size model is between the 10 and the rumored 10 plus looks like the six incher something like that I forget the details but like there's the rumors about this new iPhone that's going to have like, you know, more value targeted

00:46:53   components, but not just be the tiny little iPhone se. Because again, the iPhone se has been their low end entry level model for a while and honestly it hasn't worked that well as an entry level model it hasn't opened up to new markets like like you know India and stuff because like people don't want a tiny phone.

00:47:09   They want a nice big phone but it's for it to be cheaper and people who buy the se are not necessarily buying it because it's cheap, they're buying it because they like the small phone. And maybe they don't want the small phone to have the crappiest components in the lineup. Maybe they want nicer stuff and they're willing to pay for it. So separating size from market is a good thing.

00:47:31   And so getting back to this, you know, MacBook situation that we that we might have here. It's very promising to me that the rumors of the value priced new laptop are that it will be similar to the 13 inch air, not to the 12 inch MacBook that I think I really hope that is correct because I think that's the way to go.

00:47:54   I think the market has shown that the 13 inch air and by the way, remember that they discontinued the 11 inch air about two years ago or so. And it kind of made the 13 inch like the cheap bulk purchase one because again, they realize maybe that the smallest one was not necessarily the one that should be the cheapest one.

00:48:10   So anyway, I really hope this rumor is correct that the new value laptop will be similar to the 13 inch MacBook Air and just updated. And if you look at like what they could do in the Mac lineup, you know, similar to what they did in the iPad lineup to make that 329, 329 iPad and separated out from the iPad Pro and its capabilities.

00:48:31   They could still have it be the 15 watt class CPU like they have in the current air and the escape they so it could have decent performance for lots of people for lots of different needs.

00:48:41   Maybe they, you know, make the case less fancy. So I mean, I wouldn't honestly rule out plastic. I know they probably won't do it. I think it's unlikely, but the white plastic MacBook was awesome.

00:48:51   I really enjoyed mine. And, you know, for a product that is hitting a price point and not like not trying to be the best of the best in every possible way. It can be plastic. That's totally fine.

00:49:01   There's lots of, you know, different materials and styles they can use these days that would still seem modern, but that people would not only not, you know, dislike but might actually really love.

00:49:11   It wouldn't have to be as thin as the MacBook Pro line because again, you're hitting a price point. So it could be a little bit thicker than the new USB-C laptops. It doesn't need to be so thin.

00:49:23   So if the use of something less expensive requires a thicker case, then that allows them to save again, save on machining, save on tolerances.

00:49:30   They can save on that terrorist battery thing I mentioned earlier, like you just use regular battery cells. These are all ways to bring that price point down.

00:49:37   Look at what the iPad does. It doesn't have that laminated screen. The screen is less fancy. You can make the screen less fancy than this. You could have it not have the P3 wide color, not have true tone.

00:49:48   Maybe it doesn't have even the force touch trackpad or maybe, you know, maybe it's limited. Maybe it doesn't do the deep touch. It just does like that first click.

00:49:56   Maybe it only has one microphone instead of the two noise canceling ones. Maybe it has slower flash for the SSD modules. Maybe it doesn't have the T2. Or maybe it does to save component costs. Who knows?

00:50:09   But like there's all sorts of things they can do to this component. Maybe it doesn't have, even if it has USB-C, maybe it doesn't have Thunderbolt, just like the 12 inch.

00:50:18   The 12 inch MacBook has USB-C, but it's not Thunderbolt. It's just USB 3. Maybe they could have that, but just have more of them. You know, they could have four USB-C ports that are just USB 3 and not Thunderbolt.

00:50:29   There's all sorts of things they could do to cut the price and to segment it from the pro needs and the super nice maxed everything of the pro line without making it a piece of crap.

00:50:40   And I really hope they do this. I really hope they have learned finally, like, you need a modern, not necessarily smallest model to be your entry level in the Mac.

00:50:53   The phone is a more apt comparison as you already made because I think they have, and the iPad, have done that with iOS devices, made the smallest, the cheapest, just makes people pay more money for big things.

00:51:03   But the Mac, historically, even when there was the 11 inch Air, was that always the cheapest? I thought there was always cheaper models.

00:51:11   Like, because you could get the, you know, that was back when they had Macs with optical drives and the 101 model, so I think they've done a pretty good job.

00:51:19   Yeah, the 101 was cheapest for a while, but then there was a span of a few years where the 11 inch MacBook Air was the cheapest.

00:51:26   And then eventually they stopped selling it to the public, but they kept selling it to education for a while, and I think they've even stopped that recently.

00:51:33   That was so small that that scared away regular people. So my memory is that most of the time in the laptop line in the past decade or so, there was a 13 inch that was the cheapest one.

00:51:43   Like, they didn't want to sell you a 12 or an 11 as the cheapest.

00:51:46   But getting back to the MacBook One for a second, the reason I don't like that machine to continue coasting along is that I don't think it delivers enough value at its current price point.

00:52:00   The value it's delivering is, look, it's super small, right? And it's, you know, it's got a good looking screen, but it's really, really small and really, really light.

00:52:07   That is its value that it's delivering. And especially when it's new, people will pay a lot for their value.

00:52:12   But as it gets older, right, and as it just stays the same size and gets older and older, I feel like the wow factor and utility of being that small decreases in value over time.

00:52:24   And yet the price stays the same.

00:52:26   And I think the MacBook One, the way it should be, is it should be an ARM processor with really long battery life and a retina screen and, you know, one or two more USB-C ports.

00:52:41   And it should be less money, right? Like that's the future of that line.

00:52:45   Because I just don't think that, you know, that on the one hand we have, here's the value I'm delivering as a product.

00:52:50   I am really light and thin. On the other hand, we have here is everything that you can't do with me because I compromise everything with light and thin.

00:52:56   There's there's less capability. It is slower and it has less capability. What balances that out?

00:53:02   I'm really small. And it's like that equation, the slowness and the capability starts to weigh more and more heavily.

00:53:08   And because it's so small and because you have to use super low power chips, getting Intel out of that and putting ARM into it makes it less slow.

00:53:17   But the ARM chips cost like five bucks or whatever the hell they cost compared to the Intel.

00:53:20   I know, you know, as someone posted in all caps in the chat because they're very excited, costs are not prices, but they are related in some way.

00:53:28   Right. The most expensive thing, it should be like an iPad.

00:53:33   The most expensive thing in that laptop should be the screen because it is that should be the cost driver.

00:53:39   And that's historically that has influenced the cost a lot, not just for just an Apple's parts, but also what people are willing to pay for it.

00:53:46   Like you don't have this stuff that's not in that you don't have any of the stuff to deal with Thunderbolt.

00:53:52   You don't have any of the things to deal with, like, you know, external graphics and also like.

00:53:58   There's less stuff in there, there's less capability, less speed, it should be it should get cheaper.

00:54:04   I don't think you can sustain that computer at thirteen hundred bucks with all the other prices staying the way they are.

00:54:08   So that's why I'm disappointed that it has stayed that price, but it's not getting any more capable.

00:54:14   And, you know, I'm not arguing for this to be the entry level because I also agree that twelve inches too small and it's just too compromised to be like the entry level computer.

00:54:21   But I don't you know, I don't know if they're going to update it in this event. I really think they should do something to because I just don't think it's worth the price they're charging for it currently.

00:54:32   So their choices are either lower the price on it, which is a problem because I don't know, maybe it's not a problem.

00:54:38   I was going to say it's a problem because it's conflicting with the with their 13 inch entry level thing.

00:54:42   But maybe it's not because people can clearly see the difference or increase the capability somehow.

00:54:47   And I feel like the only way you can increase the capability is like, what are your choices? Is there a better five watt chip from Intel that will make a difference?

00:54:52   The way you increase its capabilities by putting an ARM chip in there, that's probably going to be faster than the current Intel chip.

00:54:57   But anyway, we're getting ahead of ourselves. That's a 2020 plan.

00:55:00   So I really hope that the future of the MacBook one is that it gets an ARM chip and it starts to earn its value more because just I just don't feel like it's I know this is not the big problem in the line because it's the one computer that has a clear value proposition.

00:55:14   I just think that value proposition is not as strong as it used to be.

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00:57:25   I love these German articles where it's like either you have no information or you are terribly conveying the information you have.

00:57:34   The new laptop will look similar to the current MacBook Air.

00:57:38   If you have any information, say it. If you don't, what I hear is it will have a keyboard and a screen and it'll be a clamshell and you'll fold it.

00:57:46   That's a laptop, dude. It looks similar to the current MacBook Air.

00:57:49   If what you mean is that it tapers, say that. If you don't know that it tapers, then you literally have no information other than this is just a laptop.

00:57:57   I think that's more likely.

00:57:59   But then why even say it looks similar to the MacBook Air? Just say it's a 13-inch laptop.

00:58:04   That's what it comes down to. When I read this, I say if you choose the phrase it means it has to have a taper.

00:58:09   Anyway, I am all for a modern interpretation of a retina air.

00:58:12   It could be an entirely new case, but if it tapers and has a retina screen, people are going to say, "Hey, it's a retina MacBook Air."

00:58:19   Even though it has a different keyboard, different ports, and totally different cases on it, and a different screen.

00:58:24   Everything about it is different, but because it's a taper, it's like a MacBook Air.

00:58:28   Yeah, you can definitely sell a 13-inch machine that is...

00:58:34   Here's the question, one of the questions from Gruber's thing.

00:58:37   Say there's no taper, and say it's basically a modernized MacBook escape.

00:58:41   Are we as excited about that as we would be with a tapered machine that is also all new in 13-inch?

00:58:49   Does anyone care about the taper?

00:58:53   I think the taper was really cool when it came out in 2008. I don't think it really matters anymore.

00:59:00   I think what we see with the new generation of USB-C MacBooks, MacBook Pros, is that you don't really need the taper to achieve that size class anymore.

00:59:09   The 13-inch, 15-ish watt, 3-ish pound laptop is totally achievable without a taper now.

00:59:18   I just don't think we need it anymore. Also, by the way, one thing that I forgot to mention before, with the keyboard...

00:59:25   Yes, I know, I'm talking about the keyboard, ring some bell somewhere.

00:59:28   The butterfly keyboard has got to be more expensive to make than a regular keyboard, than a scissor keyboard.

00:59:37   Again, yet another reason why the 12-inch, and maybe even the escape, why they can't probably replace the Air at its price point,

00:59:46   and why making a model from scratch that can, one of the ways it can save money? Put a less exciting keyboard in it.

00:59:54   Because less exciting keyboards are super cheap.

00:59:57   You just wanted not to have the butterfly keyboard.

00:59:59   But I'm actually saying, I guarantee you, I guarantee you the butterfly keyboard is more expensive to have in those laptops,

01:00:06   both in manufacturing cost and in warranty repair cost.

01:00:09   I guarantee you, it costs Apple more to put that in laptops than to have a regular scissor keyboard in there.

01:00:15   So, yet another way they can make a new model different, and cheaper to make and to sell, is a boring old keyboard.

01:00:21   But do you think this new 13-inch laptop is going to have a butterfly keyboard or not?

01:00:25   No.

01:00:26   Do you think it will have any keyboard we've ever seen from an Apple product, or it will be an entirely new keyboard?

01:00:32   That I don't know. The fact is, scissor keyboards are pretty easy to engineer and alter.

01:00:38   Apple has done so many different scissor keyboards over the years, it wouldn't be that big of a deal if they made a new one, honestly.

01:00:44   But I honestly don't think, first of all, that the market that buys these definitely doesn't want a butterfly keyboard.

01:00:50   And second of all, again, I think for price reasons, it would be really dumb to put one in there.

01:00:56   And I wouldn't necessarily think if they put a scissor keyboard in it, I wouldn't necessarily say,

01:01:03   "Oh, this is the end of the butterfly keyboard across the whole lineup."

01:01:06   You know, like I was saying earlier, whatever they do could signal other changes later down the road.

01:01:10   Because, again, I really do think the cost difference is likely to be very large.

01:01:15   That if they put a scissor keyboard in it, that really could just be for cost reasons, because it's got to be a big difference.

01:01:21   Well, I think if this computer has a different case than the MacBook Air, like a different bottom case,

01:01:28   then it's going to have a keyboard that is basically the same as the butterfly keyboard from the outside and maybe the same on the inside.

01:01:36   I would be shocked if this thing does not have, essentially, if you looked at, "Oh, it's a butterfly keyboard again."

01:01:40   Feels like it, looks like it, travels like it, may literally be the butterfly keyboard.

01:01:45   I do not expect this computer to have an all-new keyboard.

01:01:48   I just, like, I will be pleasantly surprised if it does. I really hope it does.

01:01:53   But I don't expect it to have one like the MacBook Air, and I don't expect it to have an all-new one.

01:01:58   I think it's just going to be basically, guess what, it's another computer with the butterfly keyboard on it.

01:02:02   Just because it seems to me that, not that Apple's wed to it, but that the lead time on this computer was not enough for them to get a new keyboard in time.

01:02:10   And that it would have been designed in an era where they were like, "Butterflies everywhere, we'll fix it with the little rubber condom thing."

01:02:15   Like, so I'm fully geared up for a new 13-inch laptop that is essentially red in the air with a butterfly keyboard.

01:02:22   I think you're right. And I don't know anything about manufacturing, but I have to wonder if going all in on one keyboard design would end up saving money because you don't have to have like two different manufacturing lines for these two different keyboards.

01:02:39   And if you can just commit to one keyboard that presumably it's the identical keyboard used in every model, then would that actually end up being a bit of a cost savings overall?

01:02:49   It'll streamline all your warranty repairs as the assembly line of broken keyboards comes through your retail centers. It's nice that they're all the same.

01:02:56   I mean, before we get too predictive about streamlining their operations, keep in mind, currently in production right now are like four different varieties of this keyboard.

01:03:07   And whatever is in their low-end MacBook Air replacement, if they actually do successfully replace the MacBook Air with it, will probably outsell every other model.

01:03:17   So for efficiency's sake, even if it is the only model with this one keyboard, that's more efficient than what they do now where they have these, they have like four different laptops now that have slightly tweaked or very tweaked keyboards in them compared to each other.

01:03:31   So like, they're already not having the same keyboard everywhere. So I would expect this to be basically the Magic Keyboard.

01:03:38   I would expect the new layout with no more inverted T-era keys, much to my chagrin, and thin bezels around all the other keys, thin margins, but I would expect under it to be scissor switches.

01:03:50   So I think the best case scenario is what we were talking about before we read these rumors, which is Marco's idea of an all-new computer.

01:03:58   Everything, like, the keyboard's new, the case is new, it signals the new design era coming on the heels of the design era kicked off with the 2015 MacBook.

01:04:07   That time is over now, and now we're going to enter the new era, and this is the very first computer we talked about last week on last week's show.

01:04:13   The very first computer of this new era of design. That is my best case scenario, because that would be like, great. I just get to see what the new thinking is.

01:04:21   But what I'm actually expecting is a 13-inch Air-ish thing with the butterfly keyboard that, you know, blah blah blah. That's what I expect.

01:04:29   And so hopefully I'll be pleasantly surprised. But either way, the second question that I guess I don't think was addressed in this article or whatever is, do they stop selling the Air?

01:04:39   That's a very good question.

01:04:44   Do they drop the price?

01:04:46   Yeah, I'm guessing the Air gets one final price drop and goes education only for like one or two years. But that's, and that would be it.

01:04:54   That's an interesting point.

01:04:56   Because the Air does have some things going for it in terms of, I'm not going to say proven reliability or proven ruggedness, but at least known, like, I'm not even sure how rugged Airs are.

01:05:08   My daughter finally managed to kill ours. We have a 2011. Somehow she like cracked the screen or something. So now like there's these visible creases in the screen and then the LCD is all like bleeding with these weird arty green lines.

01:05:22   Anyway, she killed it. Still works, but it looks like a mess. I'm not quite sure how I did it. But up to that point, she dropped it. She ate food over it. She did like everything you can imagine this thing.

01:05:32   So, and no key is ever broken on it. Like it seems pretty rugged to me. So the reason to keep selling an education is schools like them. They work for schools and they're, you know, they're a known quantity.

01:05:47   The other reason is that maybe Apple knows at this point, it doesn't have any replacement computers that can match its ruggedness. Whether or not you think it's super rugged.

01:05:57   It seems to me that every other computer that they currently sell is provably less rugged, especially in a school environment. Like anything with a butterfly keyboard seems like it's out just because kids are going to, you know, especially young kids just going to be a mess all over that.

01:06:12   And I think we've seen a couple of people in our friend circle. Was it one or two? I don't know who had 2018 keyboards and how to keep going.

01:06:21   Yeah, it was. Yeah, Stephen and John Gruber his review laptop has a wonky key, or at least had one. And Stephen Hackett's laptop has a wonky spacebar. And we and there was a couple of Reddit threads people saying they did as well.

01:06:34   So clearly the butterfly keyboard is not fully fixed. I think just a quick sidebar on this. My theory on this is the butterfly keyboards have had multiple ways to fail. There has been dust ingress that has caused one type of failure.

01:06:48   And there's also just been like, you know, some of the metal parts have just been super thin and weak and or maybe manufactured to the wrong tolerance or whatever. And so there have been like kind of like just like mechanical failures as well as dust ingress causing failures.

01:07:02   The new gasket thing has probably dramatically improved the ingress to the point where that's going to be way less common. But we don't yet know. And it looks like the answer is probably no.

01:07:12   Whether it improved the other kind of failures, the you know, just the metal breaking or parts bending or thermal expansion causing problems or whatever else.

01:07:21   So I expect based on the little information we have so far, I expect these keyboards to still occasionally fail for people, but just to be at a substantially lower rate than the previous years. So I don't think we're out of the woods.

01:07:36   And we know the little gasket has holes in it too. So it doesn't actually solve the ingress problem. It just in theory makes it better.

01:07:42   It should reduce the occurrence.

01:07:44   I feel like the only way that they could the only way they should retire the air for education customers and so on is if in the optimistic scenario, if their new low cost laptop is all new, like that they have some reason to believe that it has a chance of matching the reliability.

01:08:02   You know, as I said, we designed this all new thing. You know, we've learned from our mistakes with the butterfly keyboard. Here is a new keyboard that again may look and feel exactly the same as a butterfly keyboard, but internally be 100 percent different, you know, for reliability purposes.

01:08:16   Then they can maybe feel comfortable retiring the air or retiring it sooner. But without that, I don't there's I wouldn't you know, we're talking about like, oh, what laptops we feel comfortable recommending to people.

01:08:28   I think, again, a success criteria for the new laptops would be like when this new 13 inch laptop comes out, is it the one that we finally feel comfortable recommending for people who want a laptop but don't want to spend three grand or something.

01:08:39   We feel like finally, I can recommend this one without reservations to a certain set of customers.

01:08:43   Can you recommend what kind of laptop would be able to recommend for education customers without a bunch of caveats?

01:08:49   There's no way I'd want any of the butterfly keyboard laptops to be recommended for schools.

01:08:53   There's just there's just no way like there's a million reasons why you wouldn't want that to be the case.

01:08:58   And so Apple would be foolish to get rid of the air at this point unless they this they have a new laptop that will that will take its place.

01:09:08   That is a sad thought. I mean, it really does seem like this keyboard stuff is still up in the air.

01:09:15   And I feel like everyone was pretty confident.

01:09:17   No, they really they really got it this time and maybe not. Sorry.

01:09:23   Any other thoughts on this?

01:09:25   I am optimistic.

01:09:27   I think it's a good sign that that this is being rumored and being rumored strongly.

01:09:32   It does seem and I think it was Marco that said this earlier.

01:09:35   It does seem that much later than we all wanted.

01:09:38   Apple is starting to hear us and hear our complaining about the Mac lineup.

01:09:43   And I'm a little sad, but not surprised that that they're taking it in chunks.

01:09:48   But this is definitely positive motion.

01:09:51   If this is all real or if there's some subset of this is real, this is positive motion that Apple is starting to pay attention again.

01:09:58   Or I mean, presumably they've been paying attention for a while, but we haven't seen the results of that labor.

01:10:02   And so now we're starting to see the results, hopefully.

01:10:04   And certainly the new MacBook Pros from what was it a month or two ago.

01:10:09   That's a good step.

01:10:11   There's obviously a lot of stuff that's yet to be updated.

01:10:13   And so I hope to see that updated over the remainder of the year.

01:10:17   It certainly seems like the more we hear about new things that are coming, the more I think this is probably a two-event fall.

01:10:26   Which I wouldn't have said just a couple of weeks ago, I don't believe.

01:10:29   Oh yeah, because look at what you have on the table, right?

01:10:31   What is rumored or likely to come out this fall?

01:10:34   You have at least one Mac. Chances are it isn't just this new budget thing.

01:10:41   Chances are it's the budget laptop, iMacs, probably maybe a Mac Mini.

01:10:47   Am I forgetting anything else?

01:10:49   Does the MacBook One have anything new to add?

01:10:51   Oh yeah, right. Yeah, the 12-inch MacBook One.

01:10:53   So you have MacBook One, budget laptop, which I do think are two different things, iMac and maybe Mac Mini.

01:11:00   So that's four Macs, plus you have the introduction of what sounds like three iPhones.

01:11:05   Although to be fair, I do think this iPhone launch is going to be a quieter one.

01:11:10   You know, last year in the typical TikTok cycle of iPhone launches, last year was the big one.

01:11:15   It was like the big update.

01:11:16   And then so this year is going to be like the kind of S revision.

01:11:19   It's going to be some kind of new technologies here or there, faster.

01:11:23   But I think it's going to be mostly a quieter year for the iPhone,

01:11:26   which creates space for these other things to be promoted and everything.

01:11:30   You also have iPad Pro, very likely.

01:11:34   And it might be a big year for the iPad Pro because it might be getting that thin bezel possible notch kind of thing.

01:11:41   It may face ID. Right. So there's that.

01:11:44   There's an update to the HomePod, probably.

01:11:46   There is new Apple Watch, which is also rumored to be a fairly significant update to the Apple Watch.

01:11:53   New form factor, maybe.

01:11:54   Yeah, exactly. So like it's going to be probably a big a big fall for the Mac, the watch and the iPad.

01:12:02   And and maybe like a medium to small one for the iPhone.

01:12:06   So they could do this all in one big blowout event. But boy, that's that's a lot of stuff to cram in there.

01:12:12   Yeah, I think it's one big event for the iOS devices and one small event for the Macs.

01:12:17   Maybe. Probably.

01:12:19   A couple of things we didn't touch on just to get them out of the way.

01:12:21   We all just assumed that the new low cost laptop, no touch bar.

01:12:26   Oh, no, definitely no touch bar. Because again, like that's something like that.

01:12:31   When you when you look at the lineup, the MacBook escape is weirder and weirder.

01:12:34   Like I honestly here's one thing, too. I think the MacBook escape might be discontinued because what it was, it was trying to be the air replacement,

01:12:42   but it just did a really bad job at replacing the air because it replaced the air like in component in core component class.

01:12:49   But it didn't replace the air in low cost or versatility.

01:12:52   So ultimately, I don't see a big future for the MacBook escape as much as I loved mine before the keyboard got bad.

01:12:59   I think the the lineup would be a lot cleaner if the MacBook, if every MacBook Pro had the touch bar and you know,

01:13:08   the other things don't need don't have it or don't get it. And, you know, maybe lack some other stuff as well, like, you know, the true tone and stuff like that.

01:13:14   But that's a clear dividing line, I think. And in the lineup that I foresee that where this where this new budget laptop replaces the air,

01:13:24   I don't see a place in this lineup for the MacBook escape.

01:13:27   Another thing that grinds my gears about the MacBook one is current price. It's price like it should have a touch bar,

01:13:32   but there's no way you can put a touch bar on that thing because you just don't have the power and the space.

01:13:36   And you're not going to put a little, you know, the T1 or whatever the hell chip is powered like just doesn't fit on that.

01:13:41   But it's price like it should have one. So it's I find the computer upsetting.

01:13:47   The more I think about it because I looked I spent a lot of time thinking about that in case you with his and how everyone always wants to buy another one because they're a little bit slow.

01:13:53   I'm like, put an ARM processor in it and make it way cheaper. Like, what are you even doing?

01:13:57   It's not like it's holding up its end of the bargain anymore.

01:14:00   Used to when it's first introduced, you can get tons of money for it. But a couple of years later, I'm sour on it.

01:14:05   I mean, the MacBook Air had the exact same progression like the MacBook Air started out at around that, you know, $1,600 price point when it was the new slim thing.

01:14:14   But then when it started becoming like the mass market thing, it just slowly came down, down and down.

01:14:19   I don't know if they're going to do that with the 12 inch because I think as much as we complain about it and as much as limited as it is, it does have a pretty good fan base.

01:14:29   It's just not entry level buyers, but there are lots of buyers who love the 12 inch the way it is.

01:14:34   And because it sucks so bad, they have to keep buying it every year.

01:14:40   It sells really well because it's never good enough to last more than a year for anybody.

01:14:44   I say this, maybe I'm getting more angry about it because I may soon be in the market for it.

01:14:48   Because we have to mention this. My daughter destroyed our 2011 MacBook Air.

01:14:54   Oh, no.

01:14:55   The kids need computers for school and my wife is sick of them using her computer.

01:15:00   And so we have to get them something and I'm like, what am I going to get?

01:15:04   I mean, a lot of my hopes are pinned to this new low cost laptop is I'll buy this instead of the MacBook One.

01:15:09   First of all, I think about my kids bending the MacBook One in half because it is so thin.

01:15:14   That can happen. They can bend.

01:15:16   Second is I don't want to buy a computer that expensive for kids that are going to destroy it.

01:15:21   But it's the least powerful Mac.

01:15:24   Anyway.

01:15:26   Honestly, I told everybody if I had to buy your children a laptop today, it would be another 13 inch MacBook Air.

01:15:32   I know that's the worst. I like a refurb, you know, MacBook Air.

01:15:36   And I'm just like, can I really get I'm really going to give her the it would be like half the price and probably better for their actual use.

01:15:42   I know. It's still maybe what we end up buying. How maybe I'll buy another twenty.

01:15:47   I just the screen is gross.

01:15:49   I think my son is getting a Chromebook next year at school, which, you know, blah, but whatever.

01:15:53   He's got to do what he's got to do. But for this year, we need to get him something.

01:15:56   So when these laptops come out, we're getting something.

01:15:59   Probably it's just will it be a used one? Will it be new? Will it be refurb? It all depends on what they introduce.

01:16:04   And, you know, and I think this is probably I'm suddenly in like the normal market for computers because I don't want to spend a lot of money on this computer because my kids are going to destroy it.

01:16:15   And it doesn't need to be powerful.

01:16:17   It does need to be rugged. And, you know, so I'm I'm shopping like like a normal person who's not a computer nerd for a brief moment in time.

01:16:24   And it'll be sad if my if my best bet is to get a refurb model or a used model or something.

01:16:31   I would honestly I would get like a clearance or refurb MacBook Air.

01:16:36   I don't know.

01:16:39   That's a tough call, but Marco's probably right that just giving her another MacBook Air may be the best answer, at least for now.

01:16:45   Well, I guess the best answer is to wait a month or two if you can. But if you can't. Yeah, that that is the best.

01:16:51   I'm totally waiting. I said we're not we're not doing anything until we see the new laptops to come out.

01:16:54   So, yeah, you can get a refurb 13 inch Air from Apple right now for $850. Like you're not going to do better than that in the 12 inch lineup.

01:17:03   That screen is so gross. I do feel bad with my kids having to look at, you know, but they don't care. Nope.

01:17:10   I'm not I'm not entirely sure that I've been thinking I've been thinking about this like they watch YouTube on their iPads.

01:17:16   And practically speaking, their iPads have better screens than the MacBook Air, like their retina.

01:17:21   The color reproduction is better. The viewing angles are better. And I don't know if those two things are connected.

01:17:26   Maybe they just you know, they do it because they you know, they don't need a keyboard to do that. But.

01:17:31   I don't know. We'll see. We'll see if like I'm not sure I'm going to give them any input into it, but I may once I think I've come to a decision,

01:17:37   I may actually let them voice an opinion, like go into an Apple store and say, if you had to pick a laptop,

01:17:44   which one would you want just to see what their answer would be? Because they don't know how much things cost because they don't understand money because they're kids of rich people or whatever.

01:17:51   And so I just feel like what do they end up picking? Do they immediately go to, you know, the iPads and say, this is what I want for school with the keyboard attached?

01:17:59   Will they will they pick an Air? Will they will they pick the MacBook one because they come in like, you know, green or pink or whatever the hell colors they come in these days?

01:18:06   It'll be a fun experiment.

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01:20:39   Thank you so much to Linode for sponsoring our show.

01:20:42   Ask ATP.

01:20:47   Sounds good. All right, starting with Luke Bennett who asks, "In the house that I rent, we have the modem and Wi-Fi router set up in a room at the front of the house, as it's the only place in the house that we can get it set up.

01:20:58   Unfortunately, the house is fairly long and is not wired for Ethernet, so the Wi-Fi signal at the far end of the house is quite weak.

01:21:03   Currently I have a cheap Wi-Fi repeater plugged into the wall near my desk. My question is, short of running Ethernet, what is the best way to upgrade my network?

01:21:10   A powerline networking adapter or a mesh network?" And Luke cites the Netgear Orbi.

01:21:16   So I have never used powerline networking, but I've heard good things about it if you're not looking for the fastest connection in the entire world.

01:21:28   Obviously, as you said, the best answer is to run Ethernet. I have an Eero set up here at the house. My dad just got an Eero set up, actually my old Eero set up for his house.

01:21:39   They are sponsors, although not this particular episode, and both the old and new Eero setups were comped, so I paid nothing for them.

01:21:48   But I've had nothing but good experiences with them. It's pretty plug and play, and I have a feeling that Marco's going to end up talking about Ubiquiti.

01:21:55   And everything I've heard about Ubiquiti is that it is phenomenally good, but far from plug and play.

01:22:00   But the Eeros work great, and I would recommend at least trying that based on my very limited experience.

01:22:06   Before we have Marco going on about how wonderful Ubiquiti is, John, what's your thoughts?

01:22:12   I have one to ask Marco. Did you use powerline networking? Because that's why I put this in here. I thought one of us actually used powerline networking.

01:22:18   I did indeed use powerline networking, and I'm not going to talk about Ubiquiti because it's not going to solve your problem.

01:22:23   What? Oh, I'm surprised. All right, well now, John, I don't care what you have to say. Marco, start talking.

01:22:30   I did use powerline networking for something small. I think it was a smart light switch. I forgot exactly why I used it. I used it a few years ago.

01:22:41   And it's way better than it used to be. When it first came out, maybe 15 years ago, it was super slow, and you'd get terrible speeds.

01:22:51   The newest iteration of it, which isn't that new, is inexpensive and not that slow. If you look at somewhere like the Wirecutter, they review them sometimes, and you can see that's what I did when I bought mine a few years back.

01:23:04   I don't use it anymore, though. It was just too slow for me, and I just upgraded my Wi-Fi, and it was better.

01:23:09   So your options here. So again, to recap, you're trying to cover a very long house. The house is rented, which means modification is probably not allowed, at least heavy modification.

01:23:20   So that probably rules out things like actually running Ethernet very long, unless you want to just run on the floor, which kind of sucks.

01:23:26   And currently the setup is a Wi-Fi repeater. Wi-Fi repeaters suck. They suck probably a little bit more than powerline networking sucks, but all of those things suck.

01:23:38   Ultimately, the best system here is either find a way to run Ethernet and just have two APs, and that can be then whatever you want. That could be something like an Eero or an Orbi. Not all of the configurations of these systems support wiring the endpoints.

01:23:54   Like with Eero, the main base station is wired, but the beacon unit is not wireable and not wired, as far as I know. But you can get a second one of the regular base stations, and they can work together, and you can wire the second one.

01:24:10   Either way, even if you get a system like this, if you just use the wireless repeating functionality, the way they work is way more sophisticated and usually way higher performing than the old kind of Wi-Fi repeaters.

01:24:22   And they advertise that, and again, as Kees said, these are sponsors. However, I have actually paid for Eero systems twice, actually. And they really are the real deal. I've never used the other systems like the Netgear Orbi, or actually Ubiquiti has one that I've never used.

01:24:39   But I have used Eero, and I can say it's wonderful. And it really does work this way. If you want just good coverage and okay speeds, that's the way to go.

01:24:51   If you want good coverage and good speeds, you're going to have to run Ethernet to a second AP. Whether that is a second Eero base unit, or whether it's some other system like my beloved Ubiquiti ProGear, that's up to you.

01:25:06   But any kind of wireless broadcasting, rebroadcasting mesh kind of thing, Wi-Fi repeaters are at the very bottom of the spectrum. Powerline networking is a small step above that, very small step above that.

01:25:18   Above that, you have systems like Eero and maybe Orbi, I don't know how it works. And then above that, you have when the things are actually all wired. That's ultimately what you want for performance. But you might not need that kind of performance. You might be totally fine with just wired mesh networks. And if that's the case, then just get something like Eero or Orbi.

01:25:37   I'll just give one more Eero success story. My sister has one and I was like, "Oh, when you get it, call me on the phone. I hope you set it up." So on and so forth. She didn't call me, she set it up herself.

01:25:48   Oh yeah, it's super easy.

01:25:50   That's always been my vision for the thing. It's like if you have to pick one thing that you think someone who's not into computers will have the highest chance of successfully setting up, Eero is it. But I was always questioning like, "Yeah, but is it actually that easy?"

01:26:03   Like it's easier than anything I've done before, but it's still there's a lot of stuff to know. But I didn't even tell her the way you do it is by downloading the app. This is like from her opening the box and I guess seeing that little card that says, "Hey, guess what? Download the app."

01:26:17   And so she did and went through it. The only part that she got wrong, which she can't be blamed for, because it took me a while to figure out how to do it in person. And then I 100% forgot how to do it in person. I had to refigure it out over the phone, which was fun.

01:26:29   Anyway, she has like a cable box thing and it has its own cable modem and it makes its own Wi-Fi network. So she set up the Eero successfully, but now she has two Wi-Fi networks in the same house, both running on 2.4 gigahertz.

01:26:41   So I had to turn off the one in the cable modem. And that's never easy. You got to like connect to the Credi web interface on the cable modem and find where the thing is and turn it off.

01:26:53   Anyway, so that was the only part she got wrong, but she was able to set it up herself. So I agree with Marco's advice that unless you're doing something that you think you need Ethernet bandwidth for, the current crop of mesh network things really do work as advertised and they're way better than repeaters.

01:27:07   All right, Arian Anaja writes, "What does Marco think of his OLED TV? I recently bought a set and listened to the episode where Marco bought the LG C7 TV. I wanted to know how that was going for him and whether there were any particular feedback he'd like to give regarding the same." And then there's an additional follow up for Jon after. So Marco, how do you like your TV?

01:27:25   I absolutely love it. It is fantastic. It has ruined all other TVs for me. So it is indeed the LG C7. It's an OLED 4K. I was waiting to go 4K until I could get OLED 4K. And it is just amazing.

01:27:41   It looks so good both in color and brightness and contrast and also just like how incredibly deep the blacks are and everything. It's so good that not only do I have no regrets, I have no temptation to, for instance, play the Nintendo Switch in portable mode because I just want to see it on my nice big TV.

01:28:05   I don't want to watch good TV shows away from my TV or watch movies away from my TV because they look so much better on my TV. Like when I'm on vacation, I won't watch good stuff. I just want to watch everything on that TV at home. It is that good.

01:28:21   And so I have no regrets. I don't follow the TV market the way Jon does. So I'm sure he's going to say all the ways that it sucks and what's coming that I should have waited for. But I'm extremely happy with it.

01:28:34   All right. Has Jon used OLED panel recently? Is he thinking of upgrading? How does it compare to his plasma?

01:28:41   I haven't used one in that. I don't have one in my house, but I've certainly seen them plenty in stores and stuff and been looking at them. I am thinking of upgrading maybe next year, maybe the year after.

01:28:52   But I'm in the mode now where I'm looking at models with the intent that I'm trying to find one that I'm ready to buy and I have to buy a bunch of other stuff.

01:28:59   Has it compared to my plasma? There are still the reason part of the reason I'm waiting is there are still a couple of minor compromises with OLEDs as compared to plasma.

01:29:09   Overall, they're way better. So it's not like waiting for something has a better picture than my plasma.

01:29:13   OLEDs do, but they have a different set of compromises. So, you know, motion reproduction and showing 24 frames per second content. The current crop of OLEDs, even like the C8 and like the current year, like the 2018 ones, still have some minor issues with motion.

01:29:33   Frustratingly, one of the models that does a really good job with this, I didn't even know this until I started getting more heavily into the YouTube channels, Panasonic sells OLEDs, just not in the US.

01:29:44   It kind of pisses me off because I've had Panasonic TVs, that's what all my plasmas have been. And like, wow, they make OLEDs and, you know, they're really highly rated.

01:29:53   They're all using the same panels, like it's all using the same LG panel. So it's not that much variety, but where it comes up is in the processing and the, you know, basically the computer part of it.

01:30:02   And so there are minor differences because they're all using the same freaking panel, like how different could it really be? And all OLEDs have the ability to, you know, have infinite blacks and all that other stuff.

01:30:09   But dealing with motion is actually surprisingly tricky, partly because of the way OLEDs work, where it's not like if you ever see a slow motion picture of how plasma, not all plasmas, but like you have to look at a particular model, how plasmas draw their picture on the screen.

01:30:26   It's not like they just light up a bunch of pixels in the colors. Plasmas show a series of lit up color pixels one after the other that combine to form the final image.

01:30:38   And they have refresh rates that are more flexible than most of the current OLEDs.

01:30:46   And it's like the current OLEDs part of the problem is that they just show one frame and then instantly show the next frame, which is like, isn't that great? Isn't that awesome? But when you see that, especially like 24 frames per second, it can look a little weird and jerky because 24 frames per second is a standard that was created at a time where we displayed an image on a movie screen and then, you know, went black and displayed the next frame and went black and displayed the next frame.

01:31:15   Right. And so now OLEDs have a thing where they go black frame insertion, where rather than showing frame one for the entire duration until we instantly show frame two, they'll show frame one and then insert a black frame and then show frame two.

01:31:27   And they do that to make the motion seem more smooth because the sort of persistence of vision makes your eye interpolate between them.

01:31:34   So, I mean, these are very minor computer nerdy things that most people won't notice, but there's a couple of good videos on YouTube where you can watch and you can see that some motion reproduction, like it looks a little bit stuttery.

01:31:45   It's not. It's like accurately showing 24 frames per second. It just does it in such a sort of unnatural way as compared to all display technologies before it.

01:31:52   And the problem of black frame insertion is you can sometimes see a little bit flickery, like you can see the frames being inserted. Some people are more sensitive to it than others.

01:32:01   So there's no, basically what I'm getting as my plasma does motion better than a lot of OLEDs do.

01:32:07   And color reproduction is obviously better on the OLEDs as well. So I'm still kind of waiting. And the final thing is burn in.

01:32:16   Marco hasn't mentioned it. Hopefully he never looks for it.

01:32:19   But I'm going to guess that he may have some hearts in the upper left hand corner of the screen.

01:32:26   You know, it's been depending on how much is played there. You know, ignorance is bliss. But bottom line is that OLEDs have burning problems just like plasma did and does.

01:32:38   I still deal with, you know, burning or whatever image retention, whatever you want to call it on my plasma.

01:32:45   I kind of am not looking forward to getting another television that I have to worry about this about. That's why I've kind of been looking at some LCDs to say, could I could I deal with worst picture quality with just not having to worry about image retention anymore?

01:32:58   I probably won't do it because I'm obviously I've lived with it through, you know, multiple years with multiple plasmas. I'm just going to keep doing it.

01:33:05   It's just kind of I'm just kind of tired of having to worry about image retention and kind of tired like that. I played Zelda on my TV.

01:33:11   I burned in the hearts. They're slowly fading. It's like it's worth it for me. Like it's the compromise that I choose to do, but I don't play destiny on it.

01:33:18   So that's something to be aware of. OLEDs have image retention. If you're used to LCD TVs and used to not worrying about that.

01:33:26   You may be unpleasantly surprised by your awesome looking OLED TV if you like watch CNN all day and then notice the CNN ticker is there and takes a year for the CNN ticker to fade.

01:33:35   You know, so not everyone is ready to sign up for that kind of babying or maybe not everyone is, you know, sensitive to that type of thing or don't don't watch shows with the persistent images.

01:33:46   Again, with the modern TVs, they have features that like try to find static images and on the screen like those little like the CBS logo or the CNN ticker and try to fade them in intensity.

01:33:57   That's more image processing stuff. Again, the computer part of the television. The current features that do that aren't great.

01:34:03   They're better than nothing, but they can they can get false positives where they fade parts of the picture that aren't really bugs and fading them doesn't really keep them from burning in a period.

01:34:14   It just makes them burn in more slowly and less. So there's still compromises.

01:34:20   But bottom line is, I'm probably going to buy an OLED. If you're in the market for a TV, you should.

01:34:25   Consider whether you care enough about OLED to pay the very high price premium and to deal with burn in or whether you can get away with one of the increasingly capable LCD with local dimming that is not going to look as good as an OLED, but will be cheaper and will let you not have to worry about all these great issues.

01:34:45   Finally, Wayne Robinson asks, Given Marco's lease for the Model S is up in April, has he considered at least test driving the Jaguar I am sorry, everyone.

01:34:54   Jaguar I-Pace, which is similar performance, but seemingly much better interior fit and finish to the Model X.

01:35:01   Nope, because it's an SUV and I don't like the way it looks. I have no interest in it.

01:35:07   That's too bad. I watched a five minute Top Gear, not the main host that you're thinking of. Remember that Top Gear is a media empire and so is one of the many other people on staff.

01:35:20   I think it was John that actually pasted it in the Slack. But anyway, they did a five minute feature on the I-Pace.

01:35:27   Granted, this is a bunch of Brits talking about a British car and naturally they're going to be effusive about it, but it genuinely seemed really nice based on that five minute YouTube video I watched, which we'll put in the show notes.

01:35:39   I thought it looked aesthetically just fine. I mean, it's a little bit different, but I thought it looked good.

01:35:44   I don't think the Model X looks bad, but I don't think it looks good at all. Whereas I think the I-Pace looks good.

01:35:50   And the interior looked like an interior should. There were buttons and switches and dials. Imagine that.

01:35:58   So it looks good to me, but obviously I've never driven one. And I did price one earlier tonight and I priced it in such a way like, hey, if I was really considering this, which I'm not, but if I was really considering this, how much would this cost?

01:36:12   So not the, let's throw money away for the fun of it build. The legitimate, what would I want build. And so let's see here. The total cost $83,140. Not cheap.

01:36:26   Although to be fair, for what it's competing against, that's actually a fairly in-line price.

01:36:33   It's undercutting the competition because you can get an I-Pace for like 60 grand or something, can't you? Or 70?

01:36:39   Yeah, but it wasn't particularly well appointed, but I don't know if that's the word I'm looking for. But anyway, it was not a beater, but it was not fancy either, if that makes sense.

01:36:50   Yeah, I have no interest in this car. I mean, first of all, I'm really happy with the Model S. And so when my lease is up, my current plan is to either buy it out or get another Model S.

01:37:01   So I'm really, because I'm just that happy with it. And so I'm not really looking around. If I were looking around, this car does not appeal to me.

01:37:10   Neither does the Porsche, whatever, the Mission E, is that it? What's it called again? The Taycon? Whatever it is?

01:37:18   Yeah, that's a terrible name that's replacing the code name.

01:37:20   That also doesn't appeal to me. I don't like the way it looks. It's really expensive, and I'm not into the Panamera style. And so that doesn't appeal to me either. I'm very, very happy with the Model S. It's a fantastic car.

01:37:34   Even if they ruined it with the weird new all-center panel thing like in the Model 3 like was rumored a couple weeks ago, I would probably still buy it anyway because I still would probably like it better than all my other choices.

01:37:48   It's a fantastic car, and I intend to stick with it for the foreseeable future or at least for whatever the next car I get is.

01:37:56   I think what the I-PACE has going for it is that it is good looking for an SUV. Because I really hate the Model X the way it looks, and most SUVs are not.

01:38:06   And you look at the I-PACE and you're like, "That's almost attractive for an SUV, but in no way is it mistaken for a car."

01:38:13   And I also think the Model X is ugly. I don't like the Model X. I like the Model S. I'm a sedan person, and the Model S is just a ridiculously awesome sedan.

01:38:22   Yeah, the X looks like a whale. It looks like a fail whale upside down. It's just like too tall and fat. I walk by somebody's house when we go out walking the dog all the time. He's got a P100D Model X.

01:38:33   Like the most expensive X you could buy. It's like, "You spent all that money and you got this big fat whale." I'm sure it's fast, but it's like, "Ugh, I do not like it." I mean, I don't like SUVs, so obviously I'm not the target audience for this type of car.

01:38:45   But then I see the I-PACE and I'm like, "See? An SUV doesn't have to be that ugly."

01:38:49   Yep, I agree. Marco, have you seen any appreciable difference in range since you've had the car for, what is it, almost three years now?

01:38:56   Yeah, it's gone down, I don't know, maybe 10 or 15 percent in that time. Something like that.

01:39:01   Let's check the cycle count.

01:39:03   Also, people in the chat are pacing in the Lucid Air. I saw a couple links to this float by this past week. It's not the first time I've heard of this, but it's like one of the original designers of the Model S went to go start his own company and their car is the Lucid Air.

01:39:20   It's kind of like an extra luxurious competitor to the Model S. This to me, I mean, it looks cool, I guess, but I'm not interested in it because it is a level of luxury that is, first of all, probably way more than I want to spend, and second of all...

01:39:38   Not compatible with five-year-old children.

01:39:40   Right, like if you look at the back seat of it, it's like there is no middle seat, it's just like two giant executive bucket seats. This is the competitor to if you have a driver and you're an executive who sits in the back. That's the kind of people this is for.

01:39:55   And yeah, I'm going to put a car seat in the back. So yeah, this is not for me.

01:40:03   Well, is this vaporware? This is a car and there's pictures, but this is not like imminently for sale, is it?

01:40:10   Right, and that's the thing too. With all these super brand new models that are being released, some of them from super brand new companies, I honestly am not that interested in being their beta testers.

01:40:20   I'm not the beta tester for Tesla. By the time I bought the Model S, it was like four years old or something and had gone through a bunch of revisions, and yeah, the first ones were actually kind of rough, and I'm glad I wasn't in there for the very first ones.

01:40:35   I'm also, because I'm on a lease schedule, I can't wait for if a release is late. I'm not going to reserve one and see when it comes in estimated 2019 or whatever. I can't do that. I have to make a decision in April.

01:40:48   So I'm not going to wait for any of these weird vaporware cars, and I have a feeling by the time my next car is up for lease renewal in three and a half years, there's probably going to be a lot more options then that are actually in the market, that can actually be reviewed, and I can go test drive and things like that.

01:41:07   But until then, again, I'm in no rush to leave because Tesla does a really, really good job. I'm very, very happy with it. I did. I don't know if this is, I guess it's becoming neutral anyway.

01:41:16   So Tiff and I were talking like, you know, what do we replace her car with because her lease is up about nine months after mine or so. And so the question became, you know, do we maybe go down to one car? Similar reasons as you know, Casey, right?

01:41:31   Exactly. That's that's one option being considered. Or do we maybe reduce her car to some kind of like small short range electric car, or at least shorter range, smaller, shorter range. And I looked around on what was out there. And, you know, I've read a few roundups and reviews and stuff.

01:41:50   And there's not that many good choices. There's a whole bunch of mediocre choices. There's a whole bunch of like, you know, choices that are kind of in the middle, and not a lot of really good ones that are that are meaningfully smaller or less expensive than like a Model 3 would be.

01:42:06   How are you defining good though? Because I have heard universal praise and universal is too strong word. I've heard a lot of praise about the Chevy Bolt, for example, the Nissan Leaf. Now they're not nearly as fancy or nice as what you're used to, both in terms of her BMW and the Model S, but I've heard very good things. Additionally, I've heard very good about the e-Golf. I would love to test an e-Golf just to see.

01:42:30   So funny you mentioned that. So actually, my conclusion was after doing about a day's worth of research on this, because I was procrastinating doing UI search controller, which is an infinite number of things I've done instead of trying to wrangle the incredibly buggy, horrible UI search controller.

01:42:48   The conclusion I came to basically was the only models worth getting in that in that segment right now, if you want what I want, which is a backseat for a car seat occasionally. A friend of mine has the Kia Soul EV, and it is surprisingly good. It's a great value. It has really good specs, really good, like, you know, comfort options, stuff like that.

01:43:13   And it's just really not very expensive for what you're getting. That's a really good option. The Chevy Bolt does indeed win a lot of the review specs. Ultimately, I find the Bolt really ugly. And I don't love the idea of owning a Chevy. Maybe that's just me harboring old prejudices, but I just don't like Chevy.

01:43:32   And also, but the and then the e-golf like, so basically, like the one on paper that you should probably get is the Bolt. The one that is by far the best value for the specs is the Kia. And the one that I would I think I would feel most comfortable with, although I've never driven any of these is the e-golf.

01:43:49   Like it was the one that looked because it looks like a regular golf. And, you know, I don't I'm not crazy about the golf, but I think it's better. It's better looking than the other ones were. And it reviewed pretty well. It seemed like a good balance of size versus capacity versus cost.

01:44:05   And it actually that would be very high on my list to go test drive if we ever if we decided to go that direction for a car.

01:44:12   Given Tiff's current hunchback car, maybe she would like an I-PACE. She's not opposed to hunchback cars.

01:44:19   Oh, man. Hey, does Subaru have a electric Alpac that's basically trading one for another?

01:44:26   Oh, deep cut. Deep cut.

01:44:29   I think I might have mentioned this. I don't know if this ever made the show, but my dad has the what is it called? The Prius Prime, I believe it is.

01:44:38   The Prius Super Ugly.

01:44:39   Yes, it is very, very ugly.

01:44:41   Let's take a Prius and make it somehow even uglier and not even by a little bit.

01:44:46   Yeah, it's bad. It's real bad.

01:44:48   The leaf started off ugly and then the new leafs are even uglier. Like, somehow.

01:44:52   Leaves, John. Leaves.

01:44:54   Anyway, he has Prius Prime and he decided to put in a what is it? 50 amp outlet in his garage to charge it because the Prius Prime is a plug-in hybrid.

01:45:05   And then he had most of the parts to do it in my house and so he did it in my house. So my house is primed and ready to rock for an electric car and has not yet burned down because of the electrical work that dad did.

01:45:19   And has even charged Underscores Tesla once or twice. So, in theory, it should be good to go.

01:45:24   But, I don't know. Without question, the kind of car I should be buying without question is an electric car. But none of them really, wait for it, rev my engine like a traditional car does.

01:45:41   And so, I think that time will come for sure. But even the e-Golfs, having never tried it, it doesn't strike me as though it would be exciting enough for me to be like, "No, no, no. Golf R or Golf GTI or I guess really just GTI. No, thank you."

01:45:55   You know, gasoline powered cars with standard transmissions. I would like to run on electricity, please. I just don't see that happening yet. I think that time will come but I don't think it's yet.

01:46:06   Well, I mean, look. You've reviewed all the other Golfs. You might as well give us a review of that one, too.

01:46:10   Why not? And I will say that the conclusion I've come to is I still don't particularly love the look of hatchbacks. But the Golf is unreal value for money.

01:46:25   And as you said, Marco, I forget how you phrased it, but you're exactly right. Like, it gives you a tremendous amount of space and not that big a package.

01:46:33   And it is stunning how good a job the Volkswagen designers did at using all of the available space so that the back seat doesn't feel tiny.

01:46:41   The trunk with the seats up is smaller than I'd like, but the back seats feel great. You know, they're not squished if you're back there.

01:46:49   The front of the cabin is spacious. Like, the Golf is a really great platform.

01:46:54   Thanks to our sponsors this week, Molekule, Handy, and Linode. And we will talk to you next week.

01:47:01   Now the show is over. They didn't even mean to begin. Cause it was accidental. Oh, it was accidental.

01:47:12   John didn't do any research. Marco and Casey wouldn't let him. Cause it was accidental. Oh, it was accidental.

01:47:23   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.

01:47:38   That's Casey List M-A-R-C-O-A-R-M-N-T Marco Arman S-I-R-A-C-U-S-A-C-R-A-Q-S-A. It's accidental. They didn't mean to. Accidental.

01:47:58   Tech podcast so long.

01:48:03   So, I'm sorry to say guys that we don't have time for John's bees update. So, we'll talk to you next week.

01:48:09   Just kidding. John, tell me about your yellow stripy things. What's going on?

01:48:15   John. Oh no, they got him.

01:48:18   Alright, well moving on.

01:48:19   No, I was muted.

01:48:21   So, bee update. Bee and scare quotes as always.

01:48:25   Cause they weren't actually bees, right?

01:48:27   Yeah, consensus on Twitter about what they are cause I tried to take a blurry picture of a couple dead ones. Is that they are yellow jackets.

01:48:35   No barbs on the stinger. So, gotta watch out.

01:48:39   I have still been doing battle with them in shorts and a t-shirt. No stings so far.

01:48:46   The closest they've come to winning some kind of victory is in one of my, what would you call it, one of my brave retreats from the swarming animals.

01:49:00   Involved me on a ladder as always because they're up out of reach. And me departing that ladder very quickly.

01:49:07   And that ladder going out from underneath my feet sideways.

01:49:13   You know, you push off on the ladder and expect I'm going to leap from this ladder and run away. But instead of the ladder staying with all of its feet on the ground, the ladder decides to tip over sideways.

01:49:21   And so that could have been very bad because I have, you know, hard stone underneath the thing that I'm doing. But I landed on my feet and I was fine. I may have pulled something because I'm old. I can't tell.

01:49:30   Anyway, no stings, no injuries. But I mentioned in the last show that I was like, "Oh, I feel like I'm going to deal with these guys because I can see their entrance and exit and it is small and I will deal with it and that will be that."

01:49:46   And as it turns out, there are many, many entrances and exits in this particular area.

01:49:52   So I deal with one, which takes a while, right, with all the masking and the filling and the unmasking and then the trimming. You're like, "Ah, problem solved."

01:50:01   And then come back the next day and suddenly you see bees flying there. You're like, "Where the hell are you going?"

01:50:05   Good thing bees are stupid because they don't hide. They show me where the next entrance and exit is. So it's like, I just see where the bees are going now. Ah, you're going in there.

01:50:14   So mask, fill, unmask, trim, you know. And so I feel like how many ways in and out can there be? I'm like, "Now I've got them all. Now it's all sealed up. It's all beautiful. There's no bees, right? Everybody's..."

01:50:27   I keep calling them bees, but you know, yellow jackets, whatever. I'm just going to call them bees for now.

01:50:31   So everything's fine, right? And yet now I think either the bees are mostly defeated or they're trolling me because the current place...

01:50:41   First of all, they're not all gone. And the current place where I see them going, like, see if this makes sense to you.

01:50:47   You know, like I have asphalt shingles, right? And there's asphalt shingles near where they are. And asphalt shingles are overlaps.

01:50:53   You put one down and then you put the next one down, mostly overlapping the previous sheet and so on. Right?

01:50:59   And near the edge of the roof, the overlap between the two sheets that are on the edge, like the first course you do near the edge, sometimes you overlap 100 percent.

01:51:10   Right? So there's a gap between the top layer and bottom layer of asphalt shingles. Like they're pried apart a little bit.

01:51:18   And now I see these stupid things going into the gap between the top and bottom layer of the most outermost asphalt shingles.

01:51:27   And I'm thinking to myself, "That can't lead anywhere." Like, yeah, sure, maybe the asphalt shingles are like pried apart a little bit, but it's going to very quickly taper...

01:51:37   It's not like a hole through there. Is there a hole at the bottom of the asphalt sheet? Like, where are they even going?

01:51:42   And here's the problem. The small group of bees that I see now go in there and I also see bees come out. Again, not bees.

01:51:52   But since all bees look the same, I can't tell, are these the same stupid bees that are going in there and going, "Well, no place to go. I guess I'll fly back out again."

01:52:00   Or are they going in and one of the thousands of other pals are coming out because there's a hole in the bottom of the thing and they're going in and out?

01:52:05   And now I'm faced with a quandary. Do I try to plug up and fill the gap between my asphalt shingles as if it leads somewhere?

01:52:15   I don't want to put any kind of filler there. I could try to smush the shingles close to each other, but I've done that a couple of times.

01:52:22   But A, if I do that, I'm going to crush a bunch of bees and anger a bunch of other ones.

01:52:26   And B, I don't know how I would hold them together because they just spread back apart. So it's a mystery.

01:52:33   I'm right now thinking that I have actually sealed up all the entrances and exits that I know about.

01:52:38   And these are just stupid sad bees that are trapped outside that are being like, "Maybe I can go into the shingle gap."

01:52:42   Nope. Maybe I can go into the shingle gap. Nope. You know, the same stupid ones going in and out.

01:52:47   That could be the case. But I can tell you that there's still at least five, six, seven, eight of them flying around there doing that.

01:52:55   So I'm waiting them out. I've done a lot of filling and a lot of masking.

01:53:00   All those excursions have been successful. I've in fact run out of...not run out of...this is the problem with that expanding foam insulation.

01:53:08   They tell you that those things are reusable, but the length that you have to go to to be able to successfully reuse one of those are ridiculous.

01:53:15   And I reused one can about five times, and now I'm pretty much at my limit because I think it's dried up and clogged inside of the can.

01:53:23   Yeah, it's basically what I have. You're lucky you can reuse it at all. Usually, those cans are basically single use.

01:53:28   Yeah, they should be single use, but for my application, since I'm using so little of it and since I don't know where the new entrances and exits are going to be, I can't do that.

01:53:35   So I'm using my year's hone skills of making those things last through five or six uses, which is not easy and, you know, it's kind of annoying.

01:53:42   But anyway, eventually, I think they get clogged way down in the little thing that goes into the can, and I don't know how to unclog that.

01:53:48   So I have a second can of stuff that's not as good. So anyway, I may need to resupply and regroup.

01:53:52   The weather actually got cold here a little bit a couple days ago, and that has really tamped them down.

01:53:57   So in the end, winter will solve this problem for me. But for now, I'm going to say that the battle wages on more quietly than before.

01:54:08   I think I'm winning. There are far fewer bees than there used to be. I still have not gotten stung or injured, and I've sealed up a bunch of holes.

01:54:17   But they're still there, and they're still doing something. So, you know, further updates as events warrant.

01:54:25   I'm curious. We got a bunch of listener feedback and suggestions. I'm wondering if maybe you followed any of them.

01:54:33   My favorite one that was suggested was the guy who suggested squirting a bit of gasoline into your house that apparently the fumes killed them pretty quickly.

01:54:43   And what could possibly go wrong squirting gasoline into your house?

01:54:46   Yeah, to this person's credit, he did say, "But maybe that's not something you maybe you don't want to squirt gasoline into your walls."

01:54:53   You are correct, sir. I do not want to squirt gasoline into my walls. That said, it's not like that I'm even sure that the wasp killer stuff is any more or less flammable than gasoline.

01:55:05   But I know for sure gasoline, pretty flammable, pretty stinky. I'm not putting that in my house. So thanks for the suggestion, but I think I'll pass.

01:55:12   Yeah, I've got some more dead ones. I've got quite a collection of dead ones going because sometimes they get stuck in the foam as it's curing, or they get caught in the fumes of the foam and just fall to their death.

01:55:22   And so I've got a lot of bee bodies hanging around.

01:55:25   That are actually yellow jackets, which are not even bees.

01:55:28   I know. It's easier to call them bees.

01:55:31   But yeah, at least with yellow jackets, I feel like you lost the lottery. That's the worst kind to have because they're the biggest jerks that are commonplace to form hives and things.

01:55:40   They're absolutely jerks. Like the time I almost fell and killed myself was like, you see, just exactly as in your nightmares that you're trying to do something to this small area and all of a sudden they flood forth.

01:55:54   And you thought you were fine. You thought they were mostly gone. You're carefully putting masking tape around and you just poke something the wrong way.

01:56:00   And like a hundred of them come out and just like, you know, out of there. Yeah, that was close.

01:56:06   I can't tell that's how I hurt myself. It was like my shoulder and my neck hurt. I didn't fall or anything. I landed on my feet.

01:56:12   But maybe just like the shock of it and leaping off the ladder. Who knows? I'm old.

01:56:16   But, you know, no stings and no sure injuries to speak of. So I think I'm doing pretty well.

01:56:25   And I like the fact that I haven't had to get up in a bee suit or anything.

01:56:28   Yeah, I'm actually kind of impressed with the amount that you've done that you haven't gotten any stings and the fact that you're yellow jackets.

01:56:33   Me too. Like I was, you know, after I realized that I had to seal up like five different places. I'm like, now you're just pressing your luck.

01:56:40   You get away with it once. But now, like how many times are you going to go up there with these things buzzing around and you carefully like, I don't know, maybe I've become maybe become one with one of the tribe.

01:56:49   But I doubt it. And also, I think the cooler weather is helping. I think I think they are less active in cool weather.

01:56:55   Well, it's not it's not freezing, though. Like, I don't think it's cool enough for them to, you know, get to the 70s after the weather we've been having.

01:57:01   It's like 70 degrees. You know, open the windows. Better pack up for winter. Yep.

01:57:07   [beeping]

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