287: Open-Faced Compliment Sandwich


00:00:00   I have just barely picked up what it is you're even talking about because I haven't been much online in the last couple days.

00:00:05   But I get the feeling that the Europeans don't know that clinking a glass at a wedding means that the bride and groom should kiss and you're saying they should and so you've made it your life's goal to resolve this.

00:00:16   Which Aaron has told me to let go of. But yes, everything you just said is accurate.

00:00:20   I love too that like there's a certain kind of person at a wedding who will do that and you are exactly that kind of person.

00:00:29   It's like somebody's like cheesy dad. You are that cheesy dad.

00:00:35   Reporting for duty, sir. Reporting for duty.

00:00:39   We got a lot of angst about the Tesla stuff. Who knew that Tesla had fans that get very cranky when you don't speak exactly perfectly about their beloved cars?

00:00:50   Again, when you said that I thought, "Wait, I thought we didn't talk about the going private." Oh, you mean your mild criticism of the controls on the steering wheel?

00:00:58   I know, exactly.

00:00:59   Well, and apparently everyone who owns a Model 3 wrote in to tell us that there was a software update to the Model 3 after it was released, I believe in about April or so, according to most people, that allowed you to put the cruise control set speed on the right wheel.

00:01:16   Because the steering wheel has two little like jog wheels on it, like little scroll wheels on it. The left one is volume for your audio stuff.

00:01:24   And the right one, in the S, you can map the right one to all sorts of different things. I have mine mapped to the sunroof.

00:01:30   I also mentioned last show, I didn't know how to change that. They did it for me during the little intro setup thing.

00:01:36   We got a few people who wrote in to tell me how to change it and also tell me where the manual is. So thank you.

00:01:41   I saw that. I gotta find that tweet and put it in the show notes.

00:01:45   It was a very rare instance of an extremely snarky tweet done in a way that made me not hate the author.

00:01:52   Oh, yeah, it was perfect.

00:01:53   It was a little bit on the snarky side, but it was politely snarky, which is a very, very, very hard thing to balance.

00:02:00   But it was very well done.

00:02:00   Oh, it was perfect. But see, and here's the thing, though, like, to me like that.

00:02:04   So, you know, the Model S, to adjust the set speed for the cruise control, you have a little stock on the left and you can push it up or down.

00:02:12   It's the controls, cruise control and auto steer and everything else.

00:02:16   Moving it to the right wheel on the steering wheel, like the right scroll wheel on the steering wheel.

00:02:22   That's nice. It's better than not having it.

00:02:24   But that's my sunroof control.

00:02:26   So if that's going to now be my shortcut for cruise control adjustment, what do I do to open the sunroof?

00:02:32   The way you do it in the Model S, if you don't map it to the steering wheel, is you have to use the touch screen.

00:02:37   You have to open up the controls thing.

00:02:38   You have to tap in the lower left, open up the controls thing, and then that opens up like a big overlay,

00:02:44   like a modal dialog that has a bunch of different sections in it.

00:02:48   And it's things like, you know, the controls for the car, things like, you know, opening the trunk, unlocking and locking, stuff like that.

00:02:53   And one of those things is sunroof.

00:02:56   But normally I don't have that one selected because another one of those things is cold weather.

00:03:02   And for all the, you know, fall, winter and spring, I keep the cold weather one as the currently selected pane of that like setting screen.

00:03:10   So I can quickly turn on the seat heaters and the wheel heater.

00:03:13   To have the sunroof have to be a different mode of that screen.

00:03:17   That's just clumsy.

00:03:18   Like this.

00:03:19   I'm a firm believer as Casey, I believe you'll back me up as a fellow sunroof fan.

00:03:24   I'm a firm believer that sunroofs need always available physical controls for the same reason that windows have them.

00:03:31   Like you don't have to use the touch screen to roll up the windows.

00:03:34   There's buttons on the side door panel thing because it's a very common thing to open and close the windows in a car.

00:03:40   And the sunroof is just a big window.

00:03:43   So it should have the same affordances as every other window in the car does for quick opening, quick closing.

00:03:48   So it's nice that the model three has this ability to put the cruise adjustment somewhere.

00:03:55   But the fact is that was a hack that did after the fact.

00:03:57   And it shows because to get that now you have to use the touch screen for your sunroof.

00:04:03   And I haven't actually driven the three yet or know how the touch interface is a ring.

00:04:09   So maybe the sunroof is more convenient on it than it is on the S.

00:04:14   So I'll see about that.

00:04:15   You know, the first time ever drive one.

00:04:16   But honestly, I'm not in the market for a three.

00:04:18   I'm very happy with the S.

00:04:20   But all this is to say, you know, follow up.

00:04:23   I'm glad they have that ability.

00:04:25   But I honestly I'm kind of it's kind of shocking and disappointing and reduces my confidence in their design sensibilities that is that the functionality was missing in the first place in the three.

00:04:39   The funny thing is when you a moment ago were saying, OK, if my sunroof jog wheel thing is taken away, how do I open the sunroof?

00:04:47   I'm answering the question in my head and saying, we just reach your arm up and just hit the frickin.

00:04:51   Oh, right. I would much prefer that.

00:04:54   Like, I don't I don't want this to be on my steering wheel, but they just you know, they don't have any buttons up by the sunroof like every other car does.

00:05:02   So I don't know.

00:05:03   I understand.

00:05:05   Let me make it clear. Like, I'm not a designer.

00:05:07   I, of course, have opinions about design related things, but I understand in general the idea of minimalism and, you know, removing all these unnecessary buttons.

00:05:15   I mean, I've come around on the home button or the lack of a home button on the iPhone.

00:05:19   I quite like the gestural, you know, actions and whatnot.

00:05:23   But I agree with you.

00:05:24   I think that there's a certain subset of things that should always have physical controls.

00:05:28   I think volume absolutely should.

00:05:29   And I actually think even more than one volume control, one on the wheel and one that, say, the passenger can reach.

00:05:35   I think that's critical.

00:05:37   I think that temperature personally is critical.

00:05:39   That's one thing I very much miss about on Aaron's car is that temperature controls through the touch screen.

00:05:44   And I think sunroof, I think you're right.

00:05:45   And windows, of course.

00:05:46   But I think you're right about sunroof.

00:05:47   That should have a physical control that is easy to access.

00:05:50   You know, this is I think it was on the show a few episodes ago.

00:05:53   I was lamenting that the sunroof control on many Hondas that I had seen or driven in years past was on the left hand side of the steering wheel, which I always thought was bananas.

00:06:03   Because then the passenger can't do anything about it.

00:06:05   And some of this stuff should just have it should always have physical controls.

00:06:08   And to put it on the touch screen is silly, if you ask me.

00:06:11   And we got a whole lot of flack from a whole lot of people.

00:06:14   "Oh, you haven't even driven the Model 3.

00:06:15   You don't even know what you're talking about."

00:06:17   I have driven a Model 3.

00:06:19   You're the only one of us who has, I think, right?

00:06:21   Yes, I think that's right.

00:06:22   Unless John is going to pipe up here in a second.

00:06:24   John's here?

00:06:25   It turns out I have driven a Model 3.

00:06:28   Admittedly, it was only for about 20 minutes, but I did get a very thorough walkthrough from the gentleman who owned it, who goes by Dave.

00:06:35   A very nice gentleman I've met a couple times now.

00:06:38   He was kind enough to let me drive it for about 20 minutes.

00:06:40   So I have driven a Model 3.

00:06:41   Forgive me if you happen to be a Tesla fan, if I did not get an encyclopedic amount of knowledge about your beloved car in the 20 minutes I drove it.

00:06:51   That's probably not right at all.

00:06:53   But whatever, I don't care.

00:06:55   It's just, oh my gosh, you say anything negative about Tesla, man, and they come out of the woodwork.

00:06:59   They come to get you.

00:07:01   We were talking last week about the photo books and how you can print a PDF of them from the photos application.

00:07:07   But I said that it didn't, like, print it exactly how the book's going to get printed because it doesn't know how to do the dust jacket.

00:07:13   It just kind of has one page of the PDF that has the cover.

00:07:17   And then the next page has a little tiny picture that's on the flap.

00:07:19   And the next page is a back cover and so on.

00:07:23   So we're going to try this name, George Jacobson, maybe?

00:07:27   Yeah, that's what I'm going with.

00:07:29   I wrote in to tell us that you can, oh god, this is like the most obscure feature that no one would ever find.

00:07:33   You can option click the buy book button, right?

00:07:37   So not only is there no menu button for this button, there's a button that says buy book.

00:07:41   If you hold down the option key when you click the buy book button, instead of buying the book, you get the ability to print what they call a production PDF.

00:07:52   So that fully preserves the format of the book.

00:07:53   So it will be a PDF that has like one really long page that is essentially the dust jacket that if you printed it on a long piece of paper and folded it over, you'd get the dust jacket and all the other pages.

00:08:05   So now I have to go back and recreate the production PDF of all of my books.

00:08:10   But it's great that I know that there's no way I would have found this.

00:08:12   Like, I don't go around option clicking everything.

00:08:15   This is not even something that you can use your intuition about like Mac applications to think.

00:08:19   Maybe if I option click the buy button, it'll let me print a different PDF than the PDF I can already print from the menu item.

00:08:25   But it does.

00:08:26   So if you're trying to preserve your books, I recommend I'm doing both now I recommend both the print PDF menu item and also option click the buy book button to make your production PDF.

00:08:38   I never would have found that.

00:08:39   But I am glad that that we have been told for you, John, what the answer is, because I don't know how any person could have found that.

00:08:46   I almost want George or whomever it is to write in.

00:08:50   Probably Jorg.

00:08:50   Okay, well, there they are, whoever you are.

00:08:52   Write in and tell us how in the name of all that is holy did you figure that out because my word.

00:08:58   Oh, man, moving on.

00:08:59   Naren writes, and this is not the first individual we've had write in about this.

00:09:05   "There's one big advantage of CrashPlan over Backblaze backups," writes Naren.

00:09:09   "Backblaze only retains changes and deletes for 30 days versus CrashPlan, which maintains revisions essentially forever.

00:09:15   I learned this directly when some pictures I had in iCloud photos got corrupted, and I only saw this around six months later.

00:09:21   With Backblaze, I would not be able to recover this, but with CrashPlan, I could go back before the corruption happened to recover the file."

00:09:27   I don't...I'm not at all arguing this, but I haven't personally encountered a situation where this would be a big deal.

00:09:36   I'm not trying to say it's not a big deal.

00:09:37   I'm just saying me personally, I haven't encountered this in my experience.

00:09:41   But man, a lot of people are perturbed about this.

00:09:43   This is not the first time we've heard this feedback.

00:09:45   So this is a little surprising to me that it's that important to people, but I mean, I can understand it.

00:09:51   It's something to keep in mind, especially with like BitRod and data integrity or whatever.

00:09:54   Very often you don't find out that there's some data that you thought you had that actually is corrupted until well after 30 days.

00:10:00   That's why it's good to have multiple backup strategies and multiple backup things.

00:10:06   You know, having one thing that keeps a 30-day window?

00:10:09   Fine, but having all your things that keep a 30-day window is bad.

00:10:12   So make sure you have backups back to what you think is a reasonable window.

00:10:17   You can't probably keep everything forever.

00:10:19   I'm not sure if Crash

00:10:32   is a good idea.

00:10:48   So, get Backblaze to back up my NAS. I use automounter from PixelEyes, and we'll put a link in the show notes, to mount my NAS shared folders into a folder on my Mac other than the default /volumes folder.

00:11:00   So Gavin wrote some more, but the summary is basically it appears that if you don't put things in /volume and instead, or volumes, and put it in somewhere else, anywhere else in your file system within reason, then Backblaze is happy to back it up as a portion of that computer system.

00:11:18   And thus you can kind of sneak your way into getting a NAS backed up via the non-professional or whatever it's called, Backblaze backup.

00:11:27   Is that a reasonable summary, Jon?

00:11:29   Yeah, and a lot of people wrote in with suggestions of like using Simlinks or Hardlinks to directories, which is a thing that Macs can do that a lot of other Unix systems can't do.

00:11:37   All sorts of ways to convince Backblaze that whatever you want it to back up is not on the forbidden list, like, you know, Hardlink can use the /usr directory somewhere in your home directory and stuff like that.

00:11:48   I hope Backblaze isn't listening, because all these techniques can be detected and worked around, because you can't really fool the system, it can always figure out.

00:11:56   Hardlinks might be harder to figure out, but I bet there are still APIs, certainly Simlinks, there are APIs to figure out, and same thing with mounting.

00:12:02   If Backblaze was determined enough, given any directory, it can determine, is this a mount point, is it a Simlink, is it a Hardlink, and then trace it back to its origins and figure out if it's supposed to forbid it.

00:12:12   But it doesn't surprise me that Backblaze doesn't go to those heroic links, because if you're doing something like this to subvert the system, like you're in the vast, vast minority.

00:12:21   So I might consider trying this, but like Margo said, I mostly consider it online backup to be a last resort, and user-local, I can't actually reproduce, it'll just kind of be tiresome, I don't have any actual user data, it's just compiled stuff.

00:12:35   Although at this point, now I have both Backblaze and CrashPlan running on the same computer, and I'm probably going to continue like that for a while, so I feel like I'm covered.

00:12:43   Yep. On the Ask ATP section of the last episode, we discussed our dock strategies, and I think it was John you had said that you had issues with auto-hide because it took too long to unhide, was it you that said that, John?

00:12:58   I said I couldn't handle the delay.

00:13:00   So a couple of people have written in to share with us some defaults-write things that you can put in the terminal in order to either remove or at the very least speed that up.

00:13:10   We'll put them in the show notes. Have you tried this, John?

00:13:12   Yes, but it only solves half the problem. It solves the animation problem, but there's more to the waiting than just the animation.

00:13:19   And by the way, it totally eliminates the animation if you enable all of these, so it's basically instant.

00:13:24   But that doesn't mean that the problem is solved because you still have the delay, the human delay, of acquiring your target once the dock appears because you don't know exactly where at the bottom of your screen the Safari icon is or whatever.

00:13:37   We know it's towards the left side, but you have to wait for it to appear, and then you have to retarget. So the delay still exists. It is just shorter.

00:13:43   You've now eliminated the waiting for the animation time, but truth be told, during the waiting for the animation time, you're probably acquiring the target.

00:13:51   The main problem is that it's not visible. You can't see it in your peripheral vision. You can't see it in the corner of your eye. You can't see it as you move your mouse. You have to get the mouse all the way down to the bottom. Then it appears. Then you have to acquire your target. Then you have to move your mouse again to get it.

00:14:02   It's much easier to always have the dock in your peripheral vision and be able to move your mouse right down to the target.

00:14:09   Once again, I wish I didn't have to run the dock at all because I always have drag thing on the screen and it doesn't hide and it's pinned to the upper right corner, kind of where the process dock was in the latter days of classic Mac OS.

00:14:21   But it can't do notifications or badges and those are things that I tend to need to look at all day long.

00:14:28   We are sponsored this week by Aftershokz Bone Conduction Headphones. If you exist in the world in the summertime, in a place that is hot, bone conduction headphones are great because they don't put anything on or in or around your ears.

00:14:43   So there's nothing to really make you sweaty. The way they work is they have these little transducers that rest next to your ears and just send little vibrations through your head that your eardrums pick up. So they pick up sound but the rest of the world doesn't hear it.

00:14:57   And it's these little vibrations, you don't even feel them really. And it wraps around the back of your head with this little titanium headband. The whole thing is basically weightless.

00:15:05   And it's wireless of course, there's no wire to get in the way. And all of this doesn't go on or in your ears. So that also has the benefit of letting you hear the world around you.

00:15:15   And this changes everything if you are wearing them while you're walking or jogging or biking or just walking around the house and you want to hear like if someone knocks on the door or if someone's trying to talk to you while you're walking around outside.

00:15:28   It's wonderful to hear the world around you in addition to your podcast or your phone call that you're listening to through the weightless wireless Trexair headphones.

00:15:36   And these are also just good headphones. They sound pretty good for talk. They are great for battery life, weight and size. They're actually pocketable. The range is fantastic. They're backed by a warranty so you don't have to worry about that.

00:15:48   They are water resistant. So if you get caught in the rain or if you're sweating a lot, it's no big deal. If you need to take a phone call, they of course have a built in microphone. They have dual noise cancellation microphones.

00:15:58   So it makes your speech easier to hear for the person on the other end. I use these headphones all summer long. And now increasingly the rest of the year too because it's just so nice to be able to hear what's going on in the world around me without making myself hot and while still listening to a podcast. It's wonderful.

00:16:12   So see for yourself. Check out the weightless wireless aftershocks trexair bone conduction headphones. They normally have an MSRP of 180 bucks. You can use code ATP bundle to get $55 off of a trexair bundle.

00:16:26   Thank you so much to aftershocks for keeping me cool while listening to podcasts and for sponsoring our show.

00:16:31   [Music]

00:16:45   Yes, so I'm actually back in paradise for a little while, but my iMac is still here, but I had some family travel to do and I had a lot of work to do while I was family traveling. And so one of the reasons I kind of jumped the gun on my laptop upgrade and got this was I was going to spend some time for I was going to spend like a week back at home while my iMac Pro was still on vacation.

00:17:09   But I had the LG Ultrafine at home, the 5K LG Ultrafine, and that couldn't plug into my best laptop ever laptop. So I decided I'll jump the gun, I'll get the 13 inch, the new one and see how it is.

00:17:23   I've now spent a good deal of time with it. I spent about two weeks of really solid work with it as it being my only computer for those two weeks doing lots of iOS development, lots of other stuff. And so I have some impressions.

00:17:37   Now really quickly, just remind us what the specs are of this machine if you don't know.

00:17:41   It is the 2018 13 inch MacBook Pro. It has whatever the highest end CPU is, which I think is like a 2.7 or something like that. I saw and something like that. The highest CPU, 16 gigs of RAM and one terabyte SSD. It comes in just under $3,000 retail, I think.

00:18:01   Oh, and I got it in silver. I did not get it in space gray.

00:18:04   What?

00:18:05   I have seen these in both colors. I've owned these and out in both colors. And while I don't, I wouldn't make this statement so confidently about the 15 inch, but I would say the 13 inch looks better in silver. Come at me haters.

00:18:20   Why is that? What? It's the same as the 15 inch but smaller. What changes about it that it doesn't look good in the space gray?

00:18:27   Similar how certain car sizes look better or worse in certain colors. I just think the proportions of the 15 inch is really big and really flat. And so it looks kind of weird to have this giant flat gray rectangle.

00:18:43   Whereas the 13 inch is a little bit better proportioned like for aesthetics and having the the like unanodized or like the uncolored aluminum basically. I think it just looks better. Looks, you know, slightly old school in that way, but I wouldn't say it looks like outdated.

00:19:00   Honestly, I think space gray is being dramatically overused by Apple about five years after they should have done it. I think the the era of everything being black and dark gray and dark mode and everything. I think that time has actually passed. And I think we're coming out of that.

00:19:17   Hasn't passed. We have to wait for the Mac Pro. Mac Pro will be like that black DLC finish like the watch. Yeah, that'd be awesome, actually. It would be. Yeah. But anyway, so so so silver, I think really is the color to get on the 13 inch. And if I were if I were getting a 12 inch MacBook One, I would say the same thing. I would say don't get space gray. I would say either get, you know, the pink, the gold or the silver. Blasphemy.

00:19:43   This I still I'm still baffled by this 13 inch versus 15 inch preference. I'm not ruling out that you may have gotten a brain parasite from cat poop because I don't like I can't I can't find anything to hang my hat on about how you would like the color on the one that's slightly bigger but not like it on the one that's slightly smaller that are like literally the same shape but scaled and not scaled that much.

00:20:03   No, but it's not the same because the 15 because as you often point out, the keyboards the same at all. So you have like, you know, more speaker area and you know, it's so anyway, and I'm never around. I'm very allergic to cats. So I've I'm never around cats like I stay far away from them to be around their poop that around the cat.

00:20:23   Where would I be around cat poop that cats aren't?

00:20:26   So Hops goes out and he's unattended and he's cat poop and he comes on licks your face.

00:20:31   Can we can we move on from the cat poop? It doesn't matter.

00:20:33   I don't let him out unattended. That's not the kind of dog people we are.

00:20:35   Oh my god, you guys.

00:20:36   You don't let him out. He runs all over the place running all over the beach where he's probably not supposed to be.

00:20:40   He's eating cat poop all day long.

00:20:42   He's definitely not.

00:20:43   Cat poop all over that beach.

00:20:44   I would never bring my dog to a beach that clearly says no dogs at the entrance.

00:20:48   No, of course not. You would never post pictures of that happening to Instagram.

00:20:52   It's clearly un-policed after about 7pm and before about 8am. So I would never bring my dog to a beach that he wasn't allowed.

00:20:58   It's un-policed. I thought the cats can go, "Great, a giant litter box for me to poop in."

00:21:02   And I definitely wouldn't let him run free off his leash on said beach because it would definitely require a leash if he were allowed.

00:21:09   But certainly you must have dogs on leashes at all times and beaches and parks where they're made to run around.

00:21:14   Anyway, I'll start with the negatives about this laptop because I do have positives to say.

00:21:19   So I'll save those for last. I'll do like the compliment sandwich thing. Well, I guess the open-faced compliment upside-down sandwich that fell on the floor.

00:21:26   Anyway, start with the negatives. The keyboard. I have a few things to say about it. Some are negative, some are not.

00:21:33   The big complaint I still have, even after two weeks of using this full-time, even after lots of time using the built-in keyboard rather than desktop mode.

00:21:42   It was about half and half. About half the time it was desktop mode, about half the time it was using the built-in keyboard.

00:21:47   I'm still making a lot of typos with this keyboard. And it's not about the travel. I'll get to that. It's not about that.

00:21:56   It's still about the modifications to the layout that just make it more error-prone.

00:22:01   So as we mentioned before, the lack of the inverted T shape of the arrow keys, that's still a big problem.

00:22:07   I'm disappointed still that Apple is preferring aesthetics here over usability.

00:22:12   And also, when they moved to this keyboard, they shrunk the margins in CSS parlance.

00:22:19   The margins around all the keys got much thinner. And also, because the whole keyboard depth-wise got thinner,

00:22:26   the height difference between basically the peaks and the valleys, like the top of the key versus the margin between them, it's a very small difference.

00:22:34   And so you combine those things, you combine these super-skinny margins with the small difference between the key and the surrounding margin area, height-wise,

00:22:43   and also the lack of the spacing around the arrow keys, and also the fact that the keys themselves don't have any kind of dome shape.

00:22:53   The keys are not concave at all, they're just flat, as far as I can tell, unless it's super-subtle.

00:22:58   So it basically feels like one big flat surface, and so it's hard to navigate this keyboard by feel, it's hard to know where your fingers are.

00:23:07   This is now my third laptop in this series. I've had that problem with all of them, and no matter how long I type on any of them, that problem never got better.

00:23:17   Really? This is not something that has affected me at all.

00:23:21   I find it very hard to feel where my fingers are with this keyboard, because you can't really feel the corners or edges of the keys as well,

00:23:29   because it's not as different from the surrounds, and they're skinnier, and the keys are super-flat, and they don't move at all when you push them,

00:23:37   so I find it's still a very error-prone keyboard, no matter what you think of the keyswitch feel.

00:23:44   So moving on for a little bit, as I mentioned last show, it does run a bit hot. Disabling Turbo Boost with the Turbo Boost Switcher Pro app that I love so much,

00:23:53   does work very well if you want to run it for a while without making your hands all hot and sweaty.

00:23:59   It's pretty nice, because disabling Turbo Boost cuts performance by about a third, but it dramatically decreases the heat that you feel.

00:24:07   The Touch Bar is still annoying, but ever since I mapped Caps Lock to Escape, as I mentioned in previous laptops,

00:24:16   remembering Caps Lock to Escape is super-easy, you do it in System Preferences, under Modifier Keys, and you don't need any third-party utilities to do it,

00:24:23   and I've trained myself to do that for the last, I don't know, two years or so.

00:24:27   So Touch Bar, mostly it doesn't get in my way. I don't go near it, it doesn't go near me, we respect each other, you know.

00:24:33   We know we don't like each other, but we have to live together, so we stay out of each other's way.

00:24:37   I still wish there was an option to get this computer without the Touch Bar, and I still think the Touch Bar is a massive flop,

00:24:44   but at least we are staying out of each other's way. Small design nitpick here, but one that I noticed all the time,

00:24:51   the intake vents that run along the bottom sides of the laptop, they kind of scrape my legs a little bit.

00:25:00   They're this nice carved slot. It actually is nice when you're picking it up, because it gives you a little bit of a handle to grab,

00:25:07   you grab it into those vents with your fingers, but it actually was kind of uncomfortable a number of times,

00:25:12   I noticed when you actually have this on your lap and you're wearing shorts, so your legs are exposed a little bit,

00:25:17   those little vents actually would carve into my legs a little bit uncomfortably. This is not a huge thing,

00:25:22   but it is kind of like a thing like, "Ooh, that's kind of ungraceful." I still miss the charging LED on the end of the cable,

00:25:31   and the cable management wings on the power brick. There's a lot about USB-C charging that I'll say in the better sections of this review that I like,

00:25:40   but I still miss the power brick being nice, and the cable being nice, and having those nice little features.

00:25:46   Still, now, two years into this design, Apple has shown no good reason why those had to go,

00:25:53   and I wish they would bring them back, because it doesn't feel like we're simplifying when we remove those cable management arms

00:26:00   and the charging LED from the cable. It feels like Apple is trying to increase its margins by cutting costs and cutting parts,

00:26:08   and when you're selling a $3,000 laptop, that's not a good look.

00:26:11   Apple is known for having really nice products that are full of little delights, and I just wish they would stop taking them out unnecessarily.

00:26:20   Fine, if there's a good reason to take it out, fine, but I don't see any good reason why there couldn't be a charging LED on the cable

00:26:25   or cable management arms on the power brick. Those just make things nice when you're using them, and they took them out,

00:26:31   and I'm still upset about that. I'm never going to stop being upset about that.

00:26:34   That's going to be, in some future podcast, somebody's going to play a sound effect every time I complain about that.

00:26:39   We talked about the charging wings a while back, though, and given if you look at the USB-C cable they give you to charge with,

00:26:48   it's much thicker, so I don't think the wings would even work with that, but if you go back farther, remember the disc-shaped power adapters?

00:26:56   It was before my time, but I know what you're talking about.

00:26:58   Yeah, that was, if anything, I think actually a better design than the wings, more elegant than the wings,

00:27:04   because you don't have to fold and unfold anything, and the radius that you're bending the cable at is much gentler,

00:27:09   so they should go back to something like that.

00:27:11   Yeah, and it is nice that you can detach this cable from the power brick, but those aren't mutually exclusive.

00:27:17   It's nice that you can replace the cable separately, but you can also have good cable management built in somewhere

00:27:22   and have a replaceable cable. Anyway, as I mentioned, I use this laptop basically as a desktop with the LG Ultrafine 5K display

00:27:30   that they worked with Apple on and everything that Apple has promoted and still promotes because they don't have their own display yet.

00:27:35   I really hope their display comes with the Mac Pro. As a desktop, laptops are still really mediocre,

00:27:42   and many, if not most, of our listeners use a laptop as a desktop, at least part of the time, if not most of the time,

00:27:48   so you all know what I'm talking about, but for the few of you who don't, the LG Ultrafine monitor is still, first of all, it's ugly.

00:27:56   I know I complained about this before. It's really ugly. It's weird that its forehead is bigger than its chin.

00:28:01   It's always a little bit slanted or a little bit off in the stand. I can never get the stand quite right.

00:28:06   Everything's cheap, PC Maker plastic. It's just a really mediocre enclosure around what is actually a pretty good panel,

00:28:13   but everything else about the monitor sucks, including its built-in USB hub.

00:28:18   I have never had more problems and more bugs and more inconsistencies as I have with peripherals that are connected to the LG Ultrafine USB ports.

00:28:28   The whole appeal of USB-C and Thunderbolt 3 is to be able to run one cable to your laptop and have it basically become a docking station,

00:28:39   have the monitor, you have everything plugged into your monitor, the cable has power and peripherals and display all over one cable.

00:28:47   That is a great promise. We're not there. It's just buggy. I still had lots of devices that I would plug into the monitor that wouldn't be recognized,

00:28:57   but if I plugged it into a port of the computer, it would be. The operation of Mac OS and of this laptop is buggy when using extra-norm monitors.

00:29:05   This is, again, not anything incredibly new, but there's still certain things like how when you have a touch bar and therefore touch ID machine,

00:29:15   sometimes it wouldn't display the password box on login. It could be because it was waiting for a touch ID even though the lib was closed.

00:29:23   This was a much bigger problem when these 2016s first came out, when the first touch ID ones came out. It was way buggier.

00:29:30   It's better now, but it's still not fixed. You still have weird little inconsistencies.

00:29:35   You still don't know when you walk up to your computer and push a key or move the mouse to wake it up.

00:29:41   You still don't really know if it's going to wake up because about 10% of the time it just doesn't.

00:29:46   I still did have failures to wake from sleep. I had one of those T2 Bridge OS kernel panic crashes when this monitor was connected.

00:29:54   Never when it wasn't. Only when this monitor connected. It's kind of annoying and inconsistent and broken to use it as a desktop.

00:30:01   But during the rest of the times when it was working, performance-wise it was fine.

00:30:06   There was a little bit of slowdown with the GPU driving all those pixels, but most of the work I do, that doesn't matter.

00:30:12   As an Xcode development machine, it was totally fine. Once I got it working, once I got it woken up, it was actually a really nice machine.

00:30:20   Better than I expected. I hardly ever heard the fan spin up when it was in desktop mode, even when I was pushing it.

00:30:28   I could not say the same thing about the 15 inches that I've had in the past, so that's good. It does seem like that's maybe getting better.

00:30:35   Or this wasn't using a discrete GPU, so maybe that's a lot cooler.

00:30:41   Alright, moving on. The rest of the USB-C world in practice. First, a quick shoutout to our friends over at Cortex.

00:30:50   This episode of Cortex this past week was awesome, because it included this wonderful rant from our friend Gray,

00:30:57   who decided to buy all in to the Apple USB-C ecosystem, including buying the Blackmagic eGPU, as well as this aforementioned LG 5K monitor,

00:31:09   with a brand new top of the line 15 inch MacBook Pro, and trying to connect them all together was a disaster.

00:31:15   Because USB-C is all over the place. It's terrible, it's inconsistent, it's poorly described, poorly labeled, poorly documented.

00:31:22   The products are unreliable, the cables are unreliable. Everything about it is shocking that it's like a four year old ecosystem at this point.

00:31:30   Anyway, or three year old ecosystem at this point. I have now had two USB-C products flake out in significant ways that I know of.

00:31:42   One of them is a four port USB and one port USB-C power delivery charger. The other one is a USB-C to Ethernet and three USB-A dongle.

00:31:54   Both of those are made by everyone's favorite company, Anker. Anker makes really good stuff, allegedly most of the time, sometimes maybe in the past.

00:32:01   But both of these things are both Anker products and they have both flaked out on me in various ways.

00:32:07   The USB-C to Ethernet one just usually doesn't work. Like you plug it in, it might not work. Unplug it, plug it back in, then it might work.

00:32:14   That one is, that to me is garbage. And the, you know, my beloved four port USB and one port USB-C charger.

00:32:24   The USB-C part will only supply enough power to charge things if there isn't a cable plugged into the third USB-A port. You got that?

00:32:37   What?

00:32:38   Maybe I didn't read the manual, but if there is a cable, even if there's nothing on the other end of that cable, if there is a cable plugged into the third USB-A port on this four port USB-A charger, its USB-C port won't supply power.

00:32:53   Got it?

00:32:54   Maybe these USB-C peripherals were created, made by the creators of Myth. Not Myth, Mist rather.

00:33:00   Mist, yeah.

00:33:01   You have to know to just, you know, plug it in, try every slot and then you figure out, aha, because that's how you must have figured this out, right?

00:33:08   Pretty much.

00:33:09   Sometimes not charged. Let me try something in this slot. No. Let me try something in this slot. No. Aha. Found it.

00:33:13   So these things are garbage and even everyone's beloved company, Anker, can't make reliable USB-C products.

00:33:19   I'll get to something else I'm trying in a second, but anyway, so that I think covers the negatives of this laptop and the world around it.

00:33:28   Yeah, I just wanted to chime in on the Cortex thing. The situation, there's a couple parts of it that made it funny.

00:33:36   One was that he's trying to do gaming on a Mac laptop with an external GPU. But anyway, setting that aside, the external GPU comes with a short cable.

00:33:44   That was the origin of this and he wanted to have the eGPU on the floor, which again, may or may not be the best thing to do.

00:33:49   But the thing I kept thinking was...

00:33:50   No, that's totally reasonable. It's a box with fans that's like, you know, you want it to be away from you.

00:33:55   Right. But here's the thing, though. You know, part of his problems were like that it was a Thunderbolt cable, not a USB or whatever.

00:34:03   There are length limits and the length limits are shorter the higher bandwidth thing you're trying to connect.

00:34:08   Now, I don't know if the eGPU thing comes with a three foot cable just because like that's the maximum length or just because they're being cheaper, just because they expect people to have it on the desk.

00:34:17   But you can't put a 25 foot USB-C or not USB-C Thunderbolt 3 cable connected to your eGPU probably. Like there are length limits to the standard.

00:34:26   I don't know what they are. They're probably pretty big for what they're doing.

00:34:29   But do keep that in mind among the million other things that you have to keep in mind when this world of the cool, unlabeled, identical looking cables is that even if you get everything exactly right,

00:34:38   if one of your cables is beyond the length that it's supposed to be or, you know, you're really close to the limit and you have limited power or whatever, that could be also a cause of your problem.

00:34:48   That's true of any cabling system, but Thunderbolt 3 in particular, since it's so high bandwidth and in theory, so low latency for doing stuff like having external GPUs.

00:34:58   I bet length limits are a factor. So that's my bit of advice.

00:35:03   We are sponsored this week by Eero. Finally, Wi-Fi that works.

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00:37:26   Thank you so much to Eero for sponsoring our show.

00:37:33   I do have a couple of neutrals about this laptop and the world around it.

00:37:37   Wait, we're talking about cars now?

00:37:39   Yeah. The battery life has been kind of all over the place. I had a couple days where it was really bad, like about like three hours.

00:37:48   And a couple days where it was really good, like seven hours. And so it seems like when I'm actually working in Xcode, I think an average I can expect is like four to six.

00:37:56   That's been what I've what I've been seeing so far. And to achieve the higher end of that I have to use Turbo Boost Switcher and turn off Turbo Boost. That does help a lot.

00:38:04   I'm also still concerned about the long term keyboard reliability. You know, these are just too new with this new revision of this keyboard.

00:38:11   We don't know yet about that. That might end up being a huge problem down the road. I don't know. So far I've had no problems.

00:38:17   But again, it's only been about two weeks. Now that I've been using this keyboard more and more and more.

00:38:22   And with the revisions they have made since 2016, I'm upgrading my opinion of the key switches from torture to fine.

00:38:37   Flowing review.

00:38:39   I still don't like them, but they have reached the point where I consider them fine. The previous ones like you know, the old stock keys, I consider those decent or even good.

00:38:51   This I will upgrade to fine. That's better than I ever thought I would think of any butterfly keyboard after trying the first god awful one. Let's leave it at that.

00:39:00   Now for the positives. I actually really like this laptop overall. Number one thing, I really love the size.

00:39:12   You know, I've been saying for a while because my travel needs were getting lower, I wanted to move to the 13 for a while. That's why last summer I bought a MacBook escape or last spring, whatever it was.

00:39:24   I love the MacBook escape, except for it's only two ports and bad keyboard, like flaking out keyboard. Other than that, I loved it.

00:39:34   Now I have four ports because I got the touch bar model this time and the keyboard hasn't died yet. So I love it again. I really love this size.

00:39:43   You know, even though I complain about the thinness, it is nice that it's super thin. Honestly, if they added two millimeters, I wouldn't even notice.

00:39:50   What makes the size feel really good to me is the footprint and the weight. Like the way I can just like pick it up and walk around one handed.

00:39:59   I can do that with the 15, but this feels a lot better doing that with and it's just a really nice size. I'm very, very happy with the size.

00:40:08   Performance of it is excellent. It is faster by a decent margin. It's faster than my old 15 inch was and it's a 13 inch.

00:40:18   So like to get that again, to get that quad core CPU in this enclosure is great. You know, it's and with the other improvements like the super fast SSD.

00:40:27   It's, you know, it's not an iMac Pro. Like when I got back to my iMac Pro, I noticed, but it was damn good, especially considering it's only a 13 inch.

00:40:38   It gave me really good performance for any laptop and pretty decent performance for any computer.

00:40:44   And all of that in a three pound 15 or 13 inch laptop is really quite something. And it does it with mostly with grace.

00:40:51   Again, it runs a little hot if you leave turbo boost on for, you know, while doing heavy things does run a little bit hot.

00:40:57   But if you turn off turbo, I get about the same performance as my old 15 inch had with turbo on and in a much smaller package.

00:41:05   So I have that performance if I need it. And when I don't really need it to be maxed out, when I want to conserve battery or conserve heat, I have that option.

00:41:13   And it's great. Like I just it's a really great balance. This I just I love this so much for performance and for size.

00:41:22   Touch ID is really nice. You know, since I last tried touch ID in the Mac, which was mostly in 2016 and a little bit in 2017, the Mac OS was still super buggy with it.

00:41:33   As I mentioned earlier with like waking from sleep, it would it would ask for touch ID when the lid was closed much more often.

00:41:39   Now those problems are mostly fixed. And when it works, it's it seems faster to me like unlocking the laptop just seems faster than it used to be.

00:41:47   It used to be like not much of a time savings because it was so weird and slow and buggy.

00:41:51   And they seem like it's it's better now. So and software is now better at detecting whether touch ID is there.

00:41:57   It's also better at detecting whether you have touch ID in the machine, but the lid is closed.

00:42:02   Like so one password, for instance, would not show me the touch ID dialog if the lid was closed and it was running in clamshell mode.

00:42:08   It would actually say like, we need your password because you can't reach touch ID.

00:42:13   So it's it seems like there's the software side of it is much more mature now.

00:42:17   USB C charging is awesome. I really, really enjoy all this.

00:42:23   All my complaints aside about the other aspects of this.

00:42:26   I really enjoy having just one charger and one charging cable between my laptop and anything else I bring that happens to be USB C.

00:42:36   So on this trip, we had the Nintendo Switch with us and Tiff was playing it pretty heavily.

00:42:41   And she's playing it for her podcast, playing for fun, which you should listen to on really FM.

00:42:45   It's all about games and good things about games. So so we had to charge the switch a lot on this trip.

00:42:50   And I was using my laptop a lot. And it was really nice to be able to just like, here, take this cable for like an hour.

00:42:54   You charge a switch. I'll let my laptop battery drain for a little while.

00:42:57   Then when you're all charged up, pass the cable back and I'll recharge mine.

00:43:01   Like it was so nice to have just one charger in the bag and to know that, like, if I need another one, they're actually really easy to get because there's tons of USB C chargers out there now.

00:43:11   It's also really nice to have if I can ever find one that works reliably anchor, it would be nice to have like a USB, a multi charger with USB C ports as well.

00:43:23   And with power delivery like those kind of sometimes exist now.

00:43:28   There's more coming out every few months. That's that's nice. I hope they eventually make a reliable one.

00:43:33   It's also really nice to have the ability, although I haven't tried this yet, to use external USB power delivery batteries.

00:43:40   So if the battery life isn't and it doesn't end up being awesome for me and I'm going on like a cross country flight, I can get a USB C battery and extend my life that way.

00:43:50   That's awesome. That's something that you either couldn't do before, you know, until unless you go all the way back to the era of having multiple batteries.

00:43:57   You could swap out or you'd have to do like, you know, some kind of weird hack with a third party 12 volt battery with some kind of like hacked mag safe plug on the end of it that wasn't really officially supported.

00:44:08   And there were also two weird stuff. USB C charging is really nice. I'm very happy to have that.

00:44:15   And finally, the dongle situation.

00:44:20   Again, maybe I should have made this a neutral because it's kind of unknown during my last rant about this, which I write about about every two weeks.

00:44:27   Listener medicalism wrote in and recommended a star tech doc. It is in my Merlin style.

00:44:35   It is the star tech DKT 30 CSD HPD star tech dot com USB C multi port adapter to USB 3.0 HDMI SD gigabit ethernet with power delivery USB PD USB C docking station.

00:44:46   Wow. That is available on Amazon for $72. I'll put the link in the show notes and and what listener medicalism written to say over 35 of these are in daily use at this person's office.

00:44:57   Downsides are there's only 60 watt power delivery pass through.

00:45:01   But should actually be fine for me, but I don't even need to pass through as I can just use it as a dongle, but not a single failure among those 35 and daily use.

00:45:08   Not a single failure since they were specified a standard issue with all the USB C MacBook pros company wide.

00:45:14   According to it, nothing on them has failed or is flaky.

00:45:17   So I bought one of these and and I used it when when my stupid anchor one died at home.

00:45:23   I switched to this and I plugged everything I use. I use the ethernet part of it.

00:45:26   I use the SD card reader sometimes I used the I didn't use power pass through.

00:45:32   I use it just as a as a dongle without power pass through.

00:45:36   So I use the USB ports and the ethernet and the SD card.

00:45:40   I didn't write the HDMI yet. It is completely forgettable.

00:45:45   Finally, you know, that's what you want. You don't want to ever have to think about your dongles.

00:45:50   You want to just have it work. And what's nice about this is because it is kind of big and kind of heavy and kind of expensive.

00:45:58   But it bundles a whole bunch of stuff together at once.

00:46:01   So I don't need to carry a whole bag of dongles anymore.

00:46:05   I can just carry this and like maybe one Apple one as a backup. And that's really nice.

00:46:11   I appreciate that. I don't love that I need these things, but this is the nicest one I've used so far.

00:46:16   Now, that being said, medicalism and in their office with thirty five of them have worked great.

00:46:22   Mine for two weeks has worked great.

00:46:25   But like every single other USB dongle thing like this,

00:46:30   if you look at the Amazon reviews, there's a bunch of people who say it works great.

00:46:34   And a bunch of people who say mine flaked out or mine died.

00:46:38   So it's really hard to to give any kind of good read on this to say, like, is this actually good or not?

00:46:46   Is this actually, you know, something I can recommend?

00:46:49   And the answer, unfortunately, is probably not, because I don't have a big enough sample size, even with this listener's email,

00:46:55   because these things are known to be so unreliable just as a whole.

00:46:58   But I can say the one I have is working great. And this listener allegedly had a bunch of they're working great.

00:47:04   If this continues to work great or if I'm able to get a good USB C, you know, multi whatever dongle for when I need it,

00:47:11   that does make these laptops a lot nicer to use.

00:47:14   So far, I can say this is fine for me.

00:47:18   So anyway, wrapping it up. I really like this laptop.

00:47:23   I like it more than I expected to, even though there are things about it I don't like, like the, you know, I still don't like the keyboard,

00:47:31   but I overall I really like it and I'm very happy with it.

00:47:37   And I can strongly recommend with a few caveats of like, you know, a little early to judge the keyboard reliability.

00:47:43   Otherwise, I'm very happy with it.

00:47:46   You know, it's funny you bring up the size of the 13-inch MacBook Pro because if you recall,

00:47:53   I am a devout superfan of the MacBook Adorable/Macbook One/Macbook.

00:47:59   12 inch.

00:48:00   And I love it because it is so unbelievably portable.

00:48:06   It feels to me almost the same size as an iPad. And in reality, it's not, but it feels that way.

00:48:12   And I think it was Stephen Hackett did me a terrible disservice and he let me hold his 13-inch MacBook Pro,

00:48:20   I think when we were in Austin, and I realized it is noticeably heavier and larger than my MacBook Adorable,

00:48:30   but not aggressively heavier and larger than the MacBook Adorable.

00:48:35   And hoo boy, is it faster.

00:48:37   So I am not in desperate need of a new laptop.

00:48:40   In fact, I would argue I don't need a new laptop at all.

00:48:42   But given that the Adorable is so slow, which I knew going into it,

00:48:47   I've been telling myself, "Oh, when the next Adorable comes out, I'll just get one of those."

00:48:51   And you know, kind of be on the underscore plan of just churning through Adorables.

00:48:55   But I've been really having some naughty thoughts, if you will, about defecting to the 13-inch MacBook Pro

00:49:05   for all of the size-related reasons that you just brought up.

00:49:08   That it's really extremely portable and also extremely powerful.

00:49:13   So I don't know what I'm going to do, and I'm certainly going to at the very least wait until the MacBook 1/Adorable

00:49:21   gets some sort of update, or perhaps it gets removed, or whatever the case may be.

00:49:25   But it would not surprise me if the KC from six months from now ends up with a 13-inch MacBook Pro all of a sudden.

00:49:33   Yeah, I got to say, if you think about what kind of bang for the buck you're getting,

00:49:39   both for money and for size and weight, what you get for the 13-inch, performance-wise, flexibility-wise.

00:49:48   And I'm not including the escape in this, really, because of its two-port limitation is pretty annoying.

00:49:56   And now the touch bar version of it has a pretty large performance advantage over it.

00:50:02   But you literally are getting what was yesterday 15-inch class performance in a 13-inch laptop

00:50:11   that is only one pound bigger than your 12-inch.

00:50:15   And that's a 50% increase, so that's not a small increase, relatively speaking.

00:50:24   But it's still a super small, super portable laptop.

00:50:27   This is the size, 13 inches and three pounds is the size of the 13-inch MacBook Air, approximately.

00:50:34   So it's basically a MacBook Air by most people's recollections or definitions of what that means.

00:50:41   And so to have this amount of performance in it and four USB-C ports is awesome.

00:50:48   And it is by far, I think, the best bang for the buck of what you're getting in size and performance.

00:50:57   If you actually want bang for the buck specs-wise, I think the entry-level 15-inch is always that.

00:51:02   The entry-level 15 is always best bang for the buck for sheer specs.

00:51:07   And if this was my primary computer, I'd probably still want the 15 just for the extra grunt and screen space and GPU and everything else.

00:51:13   But as the secondary portable computer, I have zero temptation to go down to the 12-inch,

00:51:23   because this, to me, is close enough in size and is just so much more computer.

00:51:30   Yeah, I totally hear that.

00:51:32   Speaking of size-related things, you mentioned the side vent thingies.

00:51:36   The same side vents are on the 15-inch, but I imagine they aren't bothersome because the 15-inch is wider,

00:51:40   so they end up not digging into your legs as much, because they're more towards the middle of your legs than the edges.

00:51:46   Yeah, that's possible. And the actual lap ergonomics of all these things, I also think 13 is the best balance for that.

00:51:53   The 12, I mentioned this before, the 12-inch I found during the day I had one, I did not find it comfortable to use in my lap.

00:52:02   Maybe it's just the size of my legs or the spacing of my legs or whatever it is.

00:52:08   I couldn't make it comfortable to use in my lap. It was too small.

00:52:12   Whereas the 13 and 15 are much more comfortable for me to use that way.

00:52:17   So once again, Casey, I will also push you in this direction of, for God's sake, get the 13.

00:52:22   On the vent things as well, this reminds me of, I think it was the first round of unibodies,

00:52:29   where the actual edges of the laptop when the lid was open, the edges of the bottom part, were pretty sharp,

00:52:36   and people complained about it being uncomfortably sharp if you had your wrist there.

00:52:40   You shouldn't rest your wrist while you type anyway. But anyway, it was sharp.

00:52:43   And in later models, they dulled it down, like they knocked off the edge a little bit on all the unibodies.

00:52:49   And that's what they've been doing from that point on.

00:52:50   All of the modern unibody laptops have the edges knocked down for the most part, so they're not super sharp.

00:52:55   Except for, apparently, and I've noticed this too when I carry mine around at work, because I feel those little edges as well,

00:53:00   except for the little vent edges.

00:53:01   So a revision that Apple could make if they actually introduce a 2019 version of the same model, which I really hope they don't do.

00:53:08   I hope they revise it entirely. But either way, knock down the edges inside the vents,

00:53:12   because there's not really any place for anything that's sharp on a consumer product that you're supposed to hold in your hands.

00:53:18   That's not a knife.

00:53:20   So I actually have a macro photo I included in a blog post in 2011 of the edge you're talking about,

00:53:27   that in the 2009 MacBook Pro is super sharp, and the 2011 MacBook Pro, they kind of rounded it off a little bit.

00:53:34   So I'll put that in the show notes.

00:53:37   That is pretty good. I had forgotten about this post until you brought it up.

00:53:41   So all in all, it sounds like you might keep this for longer than any other laptop you've bought,

00:53:48   well, any other new laptop you've bought recently, so you might have this until September.

00:53:53   Is that too aggressive, or do you think that's a safe bet?

00:53:56   No, I mean, ultimately, again, I'm very happy with this laptop right now.

00:54:01   So, again, barring any unforeseen keyboard breaking issues, I think I'm going to stick with it for a little while.

00:54:10   I'm super glad and super surprised.

00:54:13   Speaking of keyboard breaking issues, I've got the 2017 MacBook Pro at work.

00:54:18   For the first time yesterday or today, I hit the space bar and it felt a little weird, like it wasn't working.

00:54:28   The end is near.

00:54:29   Find you some compressed air. Yep, find some compressed air. The time is coming.

00:54:33   And then it went back to normal and I just forgot about it.

00:54:35   But this is the first time the keyboard has done anything unexpected.

00:54:38   So now, I mean, again, I don't use it all day, right, for the most part.

00:54:42   Once it happens once, it's usually not over.

00:54:47   That's usually not the end of it.

00:54:51   And it was baffling me why this might have happened, but then I recall that I did take this computer with me on vacation in a place where there's lots of sand.

00:54:58   And I did, the entire time I was there, use the keyboard to the extent that I used it at all.

00:55:02   Mostly I was just dumping photos onto it, so it's not, you know, it wasn't like I didn't take it to the beach.

00:55:07   I wasn't really using it for anything important.

00:55:10   But it was open in a house that was basically filled with sand, as all beach houses are.

00:55:14   So, who knows. Anyway, I'm just trying to ignore it and go back to using it as a laptop as a big, flat Mac Mini connected to my external keyboard and mouse and monitor.

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00:57:42   Do you think, this is not in the notes, but do you think, Jon, that we'll see a Mac Mini update before the end of this year?

00:57:48   No. No, I don't think so.

00:57:55   I mean, it is rumored for the first time probably in 10 years.

00:57:59   Like, it is rumored from, you know, from Ming-Chu Kuo, who has a pretty good history.

00:58:04   I think 2019 is a safe bet for a Mac Mini update.

00:58:06   I think you're right. I don't think it'll be this year.

00:58:09   I mean, it could be this year. There's no reason. It could be any day. Any day could be Mac Mini day.

00:58:12   But 2019 seems like a safer bet.

00:58:15   What do you think this fall we'll have in store for the Macs in general?

00:58:21   I mean, obviously, like, I think the regular iMac, the non-Pro iMac, is overdue for an update.

00:58:26   The chips are out. Like, that's kind of a no-brainer. There's almost certainly going to be an iMac update.

00:58:30   They're pretty good about updating it usually.

00:58:32   And the iMac, I think, you know, it would be nice to see them basically do an iMac Pro update to the regular iMac

00:58:39   and remove the 3.5 inch hard drive and redesign the cooling in there.

00:58:43   Yeah, I know SSDs are really expensive, but it's also 2018.

00:58:46   And if you really need 4 terabytes of storage, you can use externals now.

00:58:50   It's no big deal. Externals are big, cheap.

00:58:52   And if you're already using a desktop, it doesn't need to be internal.

00:58:55   So I think they could really save a lot with the iMac, you know,

00:58:59   because when you take out that hard drive in the middle of it,

00:59:02   you have much more room for a big, quiet cooling solution,

00:59:06   which is one of the reasons why the iMac Pro is so awesome.

00:59:09   And of course, you know, T2 update and everything.

00:59:12   As for the rest of the Macs, like, you know, there's been this giant question mark about what the heck is going on at the low end.

00:59:18   And because they updated the high-end laptops and haven't touched even the escape,

00:59:25   which would normally have been updated, or the 12 inch, as you mentioned, Casey,

00:59:28   which would normally be updated about the same time,

00:59:31   leads me to believe that, you know, there's probably something interesting happening this fall.

00:59:37   What could this fall look like for the laptops, like, from worst to best?

00:59:41   Worst case scenario, I think, is the current, like, trio of low-end laptops that all kind of have significant downsides,

00:59:51   which are the extremely limited and compromised 12 inch, the ancient 13 inch MacBook Air,

00:59:59   an ancient but very versatile and very well-loved MacBook Air,

01:00:03   or the somewhat limited and very expensive MacBook Escape.

01:00:08   Those are the three low-end laptops that are currently confusing entry-level Mac buyers

01:00:13   and disappointing enthusiasts who want to recommend things to people to what to buy.

01:00:18   Somehow, I think this needs to get resolved, and I think the dip in Mac sales and the quarterly earnings is showing this,

01:00:25   you know, that, like, having the low-end laptop be this weird, you know, segment of the market that's very poorly addressed right now is hurting.

01:00:34   So, I think they're likely to solve it this fall.

01:00:38   But, so, worst case scenario is, they don't solve it, nothing changes. None of these things get updated this fall.

01:00:44   Second worst, I think, is they get updates, but they're just like, you know, a spec bump here or there,

01:00:52   like, it's not a significant change, and therefore, all these things still have problems.

01:00:56   So, basically, what that would look like is the 12 inch getting the new processor of the year,

01:01:01   the MacBook Escape getting some kind of 15 watt new processor of the year,

01:01:06   but the MacBook Air probably getting no changes and probably still being sold.

01:01:11   So, like, that's kind of the, you know, the not worst case, but mediocre thing.

01:01:17   That's kind of what Apple's been doing for a while of, like, telling the same story only louder,

01:01:23   because we didn't like it the last two times they told that story.

01:01:26   So, yes, you really want the 12 inch MacBook, which is nothing like an Air,

01:01:30   or you really want the MacBook Escape, which is way too expensive and less versatile than the Air.

01:01:35   Trust me, you want those things, and we keep saying no.

01:01:38   So, anyway, those are the bad outcomes.

01:01:41   I think one possible good outcome, which I'm slightly confident might happen,

01:01:47   because Apple does seem to be turning things around pretty well recently in the Mac area,

01:01:52   is what if they finally release something new that actually resolves this low end thing,

01:01:58   that actually is the replacement for the MacBook Air?

01:02:02   And I can see two ways they might do that.

01:02:04   Number one is they changed the MacBook Escape enough to make it a better Air replacement.

01:02:12   So, what that would look like would basically be, you know,

01:02:14   definitely a price drop of some sort to bring it more in line with what the Air's pricing is now.

01:02:19   Maybe more ports, even if it's USB-C, I know we've already lost that battle,

01:02:24   so even if it's just, you know, four USB-C ports or something,

01:02:27   something to make it more palatable to people who really just want a retina Air that Apple refuses to make.

01:02:33   Or, you know, you could maybe change the 12-inch MacBook to be a MacBook Air replacement.

01:02:40   Apple might try that, but I don't think it is one.

01:02:43   I don't think it's ever going to be one, because that, you know, five-watt chipset is just so limited.

01:02:49   It's so limited performance, and it is, you know, only having that one port, like, people hate that.

01:02:54   Like, you know, I know a lot of people love that laptop, but it's not MacBook Air buyers who love that laptop.

01:02:58   So then, what I think is my most optimistic possibility here, but I still wouldn't rule this out,

01:03:05   what if we see the next body style being launched in this new product?

01:03:11   Because this would not be the first time Apple debuted a new body style in the entry level or the smallest laptop.

01:03:18   You know, first it was the MacBook Air in 2008, and then 2010.

01:03:23   That was the new body style. Like, that was the first unibody, was the MacBook Air.

01:03:26   And then, when the 12-inch MacBook came out, that debuted what became the current generation of MacBook Pro style,

01:03:35   with its crappy keyboard and, you know, super thin everything, USB-C only.

01:03:39   Like, that was the start of a new body style.

01:03:42   So, the timing would not be unreasonable for this fall to be the debut of a new body style that starts out as just the low-end laptop,

01:03:52   and maybe goes to the Pros next year.

01:03:54   I'm very excited at that possibility, because even if, I mean, jeez, I guess worst case scenario is they do debut a new body style,

01:04:03   and it's even worse in all these areas that I care about. It has no ports and a flat glass keyboard.

01:04:09   You know, that's possible.

01:04:10   - Oh my word.

01:04:11   (laughs)

01:04:13   - But, you know, again, I think Apple has turned the corner on the Max and is headed in the right direction now.

01:04:19   So, I would love to see what a new body style would be, and whatever debuts in the low-end is probably going to make it to the high-end in a year or two.

01:04:28   So, it would be interesting to see if they do change something, like, what direction does it take in areas that are controversial about the current Pros?

01:04:36   So, what direction does the keyboard take? What direction does the touch bar take? What direction, you know, what changes?

01:04:42   Are the ports different? You know, what, just, what's different?

01:04:45   'Cause that could really indicate where we're headed next, and so, not to mention the fact that it would be a really cool thing to finally revive the bottom of the MacBook lineup.

01:04:53   - Yeah, I feel like they need to reconcile that lineup, not, in a way that eliminates, like, I don't think their current distribution of body styles and price points makes any sense,

01:05:05   even if they were all, like, up-to-date and new, I think. It's just too much of a mess.

01:05:08   So, I'm really looking for some consolidation, and you can consolidate all sorts of different ways.

01:05:12   You could leave the stupid MacBook Air and just consolidate the 12-inch and the 13-inch into some compromise machine.

01:05:17   You could, more likely, you could leave the 12-inch, 'cause it's so darn small, and consolidate the Air and the Escape into one.

01:05:23   Like, there's lots of different ways you can slice it, but they just have too many computers that vary in stupid ways.

01:05:28   The interesting thing to me, thinking about, thinking about the Air going away, and, you know, the Escape going away and being replaced by a new model,

01:05:37   leaving the 12-inch being the super small thing, is, A, making a model whose price can extend down to where the Air used to be,

01:05:46   so, like, entry price for that being 999, right, and then extending it up, right, and B, like, we've been talking for years now about dongles and not having any traditional ports

01:05:59   and, you know, the reliability of hubs and stuff like that, but sometimes when I think about this, I think the high end and the tech nerds actually have more tolerance for being annoyed by dongles than the low end does.

01:06:14   Like, when the Air finally goes away, and some poor, unsuspecting non-computer enthusiast goes into an Apple store and buys basically the cheapest laptop they have,

01:06:25   and leaves with a thing that does not have USB-A ports. It's not like those people use tons of peripherals, but thumb drives are so common now, they give them out at trade shows and stuff,

01:06:35   that I bet because there's so many people that buy the cheapest Apple laptop, like it's their best-selling model, right, because there are so many of those people,

01:06:42   the number of those people who just expect to plop it down their desk and shove in the stupid thumb drive from the trade show or whatever,

01:06:48   and find out that there's no port of that shape on the side of the thing, I feel like that might be a more, like, the final hurdle, the final 80% of people who don't know about dongle town,

01:06:59   bringing everybody into dongle town, I think there may be more of a customer sat impact of finally ditching the Air,

01:07:09   because so many people keep buying that thing, and because it survives, because it's rugged, because it has the ports, because, you know, all those things that are attributes of the Air that we all assume will go away,

01:07:19   and the new ones, certainly the USB-A ports we assume will go away, that the impact of consolidating the line and getting rid of the Air could be much more angry customers than they ever got when tweaking the high end,

01:07:31   because on the high end, there's lots of carrots, like, "Well, we grumble and we hate it, but it's new and it's shiny and there are advantages and all the stuff that you talked about,"

01:07:38   and people don't care about new, they don't care about shiny, they don't care about the advantages, they think they just got a broken laptop that doesn't have the right holes in the side of it,

01:07:45   and it just seems punitive, I mean, I feel that way often about the current laptops, it just seems punitive, I look at the giant blank empty sides of these laptops and I'm like, "Why are you punishing me?"

01:07:56   And I remember back when the original removal of all ports from laptops came around, Apple was sending out surveys to people and asking them what kind of ports to use and stuff like that,

01:08:06   and they were so hopeful that they're thinking about this, and again, in the April Mac Pro event where I was attaching all my hopes and dreams to vague mentions of perhaps rethinking what the laptops look like,

01:08:18   which in retrospect, they were probably just talking about the 2018s that we just got, which didn't satisfy me in any way when it comes to the port situation,

01:08:25   but I really hope that whatever they do in the low end, that the things have something that acknowledges what I think is the stark reality that just USB-C ports on every single laptop is less satisfying than breaking the purity and saying,

01:08:46   "Okay, fine, one of our models has an SD card slot," or, "Fine, we put one USB-A on something," like anything, any kind of compromise, just because it seems like I don't see the benefit I'm getting from not having a USB-A port.

01:09:01   I see the inconvenience all the time, I don't see the benefit, and the same thing with the low end.

01:09:05   You can't have every port, you can't have Ethernet, you can't have every single thing that the old ones had, probably because they're too small, I get that,

01:09:11   but there are lots of ports that would fit, that would be really convenient, and just, Donald Town is not doing it for me. I don't like it.

01:09:20   It makes the laptop feel worse to me. I want to be able to plug in the things I need to plug in, and as we pointed out a million times, those old interfaces are taking a long time to go away.

01:09:34   Eventually they will, fine, and when they are, then we'll get rid of the stuff, but they're still around, they're still in my face every day, and I don't know how long it's going to take for them to disappear, but they're still here.

01:09:44   So I really hope that there is consolidation in the line, and I hope for some glimmer that shows that they are willing to not be purists about the fact that the only holes in the side of their laptops are for air,

01:09:58   or for a port that may be USB-C or Thunderbolt 3, depending on what it is.

01:10:04   So what are you looking to plug into your laptop that you feel like you can't without a dongle?

01:10:09   Any USB-A peripheral. I don't have all USB-A, I connect my camera to pull pictures off. My sister bought a thumb drive and I wanted to copy the pictures to it. That thumb drive was USB-A, right?

01:10:20   I'm not even talking about HDMI at work all the time because I understand that's not a concern of people who buy $900 laptops probably, right? But USB-A and SD, those two things both annoy me.

01:10:31   Obviously you're not going to get probably both of them, but one of them. The SD card slot, it'll fit. It's thin enough to fit, I promise you. You can find room in there for an SD card slot.

01:10:39   Then I wouldn't have to connect my camera to it. I would still have to use a dongle when I connected her thumb drive. And what if I forgot my dongle or didn't have it with me? It's annoying to have to have dongles around.

01:10:50   Dongles aren't attached to my laptop. They're in another bag that hopefully is in the same place as my laptop, right? That's less useful to me than a laptop that has one USB-A port on it somewhere for lazy things.

01:11:02   iMac Pro's got them. It's a brand new computer. It can be done. There's room somewhere just for one of them for legacy reasons. And again, if you're going to put it on one, put it on the cheapest one because those people are most likely to have old peripherals and aren't going to be like, "Because I'm a fancy boy, I'm going to go replace all of my cables with USB-C cables because I want to enter the USB..."

01:11:21   They don't think like that. They just have stuff and they buy a laptop that they used to be able to plug their thing into. Now they can't. And now they have to get an adapter and it just seems worse. I'm looking for compromise. I'm looking for some visible compromise on the ports.

01:11:37   You're waiting for a train that ain't coming if you ask me.

01:11:39   You know, I agree very much with both of you. I think I really want them to have that versatility again for all the reasons you mentioned. I do agree that low-end buyers are also, you know, are most unforgiving when it comes to that kind of removal.

01:11:55   That's why like Forever, the Mac that sold in ridiculous volumes was that one that still had the optical drive, the 101. Because a lot of people still use that long after.

01:12:05   My mother still uses a laptop with an optical drive because she can't play discs from the library in any other computer.

01:12:11   Right, like a lot of people still want that. And it seems to a lot of buyers, you know, these removals of things don't seem like moving forward. As you mentioned, they seem like cheaping out.

01:12:24   And, you know, earlier when I was talking about the power brick, you know, removals, like when you have like removals for new models that then cost more than what they're replacing, that rubs a lot of people the wrong way.

01:12:38   That loses a lot of customers, loses a lot of buyers or it makes people feel like they removed them for greed, you know, or profit instead of some, you know, good design reason or something like that.

01:12:49   It's ideology though, for the most part. It's not, you know, the cheaping out of like, you know, not having the power cable for the power brick or the, you know, that's, you know, nickel and diming.

01:12:57   But the other stuff, it's like philosophical, like that we need to leave those legacy things just fine, which I'm all for. But it's just the key is getting the timing right.

01:13:04   And the MacBook Air, I feel like has protected Apple from this for a while because so many people buy it and it's always there, just like the optical drive one did.

01:13:12   And I, and speaking of like, I, I'm not arguing for optical drives, they should not be in laptops anymore. But I'm, I've been unable to convince my own mother that she can get video online.

01:13:22   She says, Oh, but I can get the disc for free from the library. Oh, you can buy an external drive 50 bucks. Oh, but then I gotta have a thing attached.

01:13:27   She doesn't want to have a thing attached to her laptop because it's going to be inconvenient when it's on her lap. It's just easier to have it built in.

01:13:32   That's exactly the same thinking with everything else, SD cards or dongles. It's just easier to have everything built in.

01:13:38   Like, I always think of it this way. I don't like instead of arguing for like, Oh, you know, arguing for this or being against progress, where I say, imagine this, imagine you had like you just, you just mentioned it and we mentioned all the time.

01:13:49   Imagine you had something the size and weight of the MacBook Air with a retina screen with USB C power, but all the other ports. People would love that thing for $999.

01:14:00   People would love it. Like imagine a 15 inch MacBook Pro that had an SD card slot. Would they like it? Would people like it more or less than the current one?

01:14:08   People would like it more. The people who never use the SD card slot, they'd be neutral, right? Oh, they lost 75 millimeters of battery. They'd be fine, right?

01:14:17   People who want an SD card slot would be over the moon. They would be like, don't buy the ones without the SD card slot.

01:14:22   Like imagine a 15 inch laptop with one USB A and an SD card slot. People would love it. They would absolutely love it.

01:14:30   It would be better if you gave any pro person, you can have this one with the SD card slot in the USB A and all the other ports or this one without them. Which one is better?

01:14:37   No one's going to say, I like the purity of that one. I like how it doesn't have those other ports.

01:14:41   I'm never going to use those ports anyway. And they probably, I'm probably losing like at least 15 minutes of battery life from those things and treating into my case.

01:14:48   I'd rather have the one without those ports on it. Everyone would pick the one with the ports, even though they're legacy and ugly and so on and so forth.

01:14:55   Hell, if you made the arrow keys half size, I bet you get a lot of takers. Like these products that we imagine that are exactly the same as the current products with a few tiny compromises would be more attractive products.

01:15:08   More people would want to buy them. And the only reason we don't have them are for reasons of, it seems, ideological purity and sort of, you know, pushing the world forward.

01:15:17   And I applaud that, but I wish the pushing had worked. I wish we had transformed over, I don't know how to say overnight, I wish we had transformed over the past three years to an ecosystem where USB-C is the only thing we needed.

01:15:29   But it doesn't seem to have worked out. So I think it's time to consider a compromise. And, you know, I said this a couple of years ago when we talked about this, like my realistic compromise hope is just SD.

01:15:39   Yeah.

01:15:40   That's because it's the one that's the skinniest. That's basically what I'm going for. It's the one that's the skinniest.

01:15:45   Yeah, we're never getting USB-A back or any of the other ports, but SD seems achievable.

01:15:50   Oh, yeah. And you said no to USB-A, but like the iMac Pro is USB-A. I was flabbergasted by that. Like, because the Mac, I can't imagine the Mac Pro is going to have USB-A. I think we talked about this before, but the iMac Pro, a brand new computer, a brand new fancy awesome computer has USB-A ports. It's mind boggling.

01:16:08   It's awesome. I can finally plug eight USB things into my iMac.

01:16:12   I know.

01:16:13   And if you were given the choice between the iMac Pro with those USB-A ports and without one, which one would you choose? If you had to pay $100 more for the one with USB-A ports, you would probably pay it. Like, it's just, it's insane how much better it makes that computer.

01:16:25   I would have paid $500 more. That's like, I use USB for so much at my desktop. Like all those ports are always full.

01:16:32   I don't know. It's so tough because I think it's hard for the three of us to remember that just because it says MacBook Pro doesn't necessarily mean it's only professionals that buy them.

01:16:48   And moreover, the definition of professional is huge. You know, our definition of professional, except maybe John, is that a GPU really doesn't matter. It can have the crummiest GPU in the world for Marco and me because we're just using the operating system.

01:17:05   It doesn't, you know, we're not doing much with the GPU. And yes, I'm sure you're writing in right now to tell me, "Oh, core ML and blah, blah, blah." Okay.

01:17:11   The point I'm making is we're not playing games. We're not doing 3D stuff. For the sorts of things that Marco and I do, a GPU doesn't matter.

01:17:19   But there's a kind of professional where the GPU is critical for what they're doing. Say you're doing a lot of CAD work, for example.

01:17:26   And I think that it's easy for us to lose sight of the fact that, you know, if you look around, and granted I haven't been on a college campus in a long time,

01:17:37   but if you look maybe in like a Starbucks or something that, you know, Marco, if you lowered yourself to going into a Starbucks, you see a lot of MacBook Pros.

01:17:46   You don't see, you see a lot of Airs as well, but you see a lot of MacBook Pros. And certainly in my place of business, I saw plenty of MacBook Pros on desks of people who did nothing but Office or really, you know, Google Docs sorts of things.

01:17:58   And for most people that buy a MacBook Pro, I would argue that an SD card slot is wasteful. Now, I do agree with what one of you said, I think it was Jon, you know, put it in there. Who cares?

01:18:10   It's thin and it'll make some people happy and everyone else will just kind of shrug over it. But I don't think that, I mean, I certainly had no use for an SD card slot until I bought a camera in 2014.

01:18:23   And if it wasn't for the fact that I bought a big camera in 2014, I would still think it's just a stupid port to take up space.

01:18:29   And so just because it's important to the three of us, and an SD card slot is important to me, I would kill for an SD card slot in any of my laptops.

01:18:38   But just because it's important to us doesn't mean it's important to the majority of Apple's customers.

01:18:47   And I think that the three of us, myself included, often lose sight of that because we want the computer that's perfect for us. And the fact of the matter is...

01:18:54   Well, the point I was making is that the port that is most important to most of Apple's customers is USB-A.

01:18:59   Like that's the point I was making with the loan. Like, real is, if that's your judgment criteria, like what is important to the most buyers? It's USB-A.

01:19:06   Because the most buyers buy the cheapest laptops and cheapest laptops come with USB-A and people who buy cheap laptops have tons of USB-A stuff and they don't want to rebuy stuff.

01:19:13   But we all think, well, they're not going to do USB-A because it's too big or whatever. So I don't know. That's why my fallback position is SD. It's like, fine.

01:19:21   If you're going to hold the line on USB-A, then throw in the SD. Because again, it's like the photographer's computer.

01:19:29   And if they were into... The Tim Cook product mindset has lots of things that are different about it.

01:19:35   We talked about them keeping products on the market for a long time and not doing updates and stuff like that.

01:19:39   A similar philosophy that could have been part of the Tim Cook philosophy but hasn't been, but it falls in the line of things that Apple didn't use to do.

01:19:48   We'd say, oh, that's not an Apple-style thing to do. One of those is having a million different variations of a product.

01:19:55   That's not a thing that Apple does. They have variations of a product and now they also have colors mixed in, which is nice, but in general it's a cheap thing to do.

01:20:01   But it's not like you can choose to buy the 15-inch with the SD card slot and the 15-inch without the SD card slot. Because there's too many variations.

01:20:08   But I can imagine an alternate universe where that was yet another thing that Tim Cook decided to do to take from the world of PC laptop where you can get it a million different ways.

01:20:17   And say, the old Apple didn't do that, but the new Apple decides, you know what, we are going to have 25 different SKUs.

01:20:22   You can buy the 15-inch with two USB-A ports. You can buy it with an SD card slot. You can buy one model with a CF card slot.

01:20:29   That is an alternate universe Apple that could also exist and would, I think, serve the needs of customers better.

01:20:36   Because imagine when you were picking them, if you had more options to pick and the person who didn't want the SD card slot could not have it.

01:20:42   Maybe they'd have more battery space, so the person who wanted it could get it. And you could choose.

01:20:46   Obviously, Apple has never really been like that and that's kind of what the Pro Max for and in general laptops aren't like that.

01:20:52   And it would cost Apple more and they would make less money and it would be stupid from a supply chain perspective.

01:20:57   There's many reasons it's not going to happen, right?

01:20:59   But as a customer, wouldn't we all love that ability? It would be attractive to customers and things that are attractive to customers have the magical ability for Apple to get more money from us.

01:21:10   Especially on the high end where there's some price flexibility. If you give some, like Margaret was saying, he's ready to pay $500 for USB-A ports.

01:21:19   There is demand for this stuff. Apple just needs to find the right balance between satisfying demand without making a million products, which is ridiculous.

01:21:27   But having enough of a product that is attractive that people get excited about it being released.

01:21:34   Like people were excited about the iMac Pro because there hadn't been a Mac like that available to buy for any amount of money for a long time.

01:21:41   People were ready and willing to throw money at Apple to get that computer.

01:21:45   We haven't had an event like that in the laptop line for a long time where people are like, "Finally, I have this giant wad of money that I wanted to throw at you and I've been hemming and hawing."

01:21:56   It's more like when the new laptops come out, people are like, "Well, they're better than the last ones and they're making progress."

01:22:02   But nobody is throwing money at them.

01:22:05   I disagree. I think the launch of the 12-inch was one of those moments.

01:22:09   Because anytime you introduce a radical new size, especially when it's smaller than what you had before, that does tend to create one of those moments.

01:22:17   That was 2015. I was talking about it in recent. I guess that's only three years ago, but it seems like a long time.

01:22:22   You're right. The 12-inch was definitely an event like that. Even the original MacBook Air, which was a stinker of a machine, was an event like that.

01:22:29   The original Retina 15-inch was definitely an event like that.

01:22:32   That's what I'm trying to recapture. Where it's like, "Oh my god, have you seen the new laptops? I have to have one."

01:22:37   That hasn't happened since 2015.

01:22:40   No, the Touch Bar, man. The Touch Bar. Everyone wanted the Touch Bar.

01:22:43   Even when it was announced, no one cared about it.

01:22:46   I think that's close. People didn't know. It was cool, and people were excited, but I think there was some trepidation.

01:22:53   It was new enough that they weren't... It's kind of like the iPhone. It seems cool, but you're not sure, because you've never used a phone like that.

01:23:01   Oh god, it's nothing like that at all. Oh my god.

01:23:05   When you have a new technology that people haven't used before... How many people had ever used a laptop with a little screen on the keyboard? Almost nobody.

01:23:12   So you didn't know. It looked cool, but you're like, "But will that actually be cool and useful?"

01:23:16   You don't know until you try it.

01:23:18   Yeah, when the iPhone was announced, everyone was like, "Oh my god, I know exactly how and when and why that will be cool, and I want one right this second."

01:23:24   When the Touch Bar was used, everyone was like, "Eh, maybe we'll see what developers do with this."

01:23:29   The iPhone looked amazing, but how many people had used a complete touchscreen smartphone by that point? Almost nobody.

01:23:37   So the potential for it to say, "Well, maybe..." Again, remember the angst over the keyboard?

01:23:42   If you haven't tried a software keyboard, you've seen them do it and they talk a good game, but you don't know what it's going to be like.

01:23:47   Same thing with the Touch Bar, and same thing with any kind of technology that most people haven't used. There is a question about it.

01:23:54   The question was decisively answered with the iPhone, and literally anybody touched one for two seconds.

01:23:59   The Touch Bar wasn't like that. When you touched it, it was like, "Eh, I don't know. Maybe when software supports it, kind of."

01:24:07   Some people like it, some people don't, but it's obviously not a home run.

01:24:11   But technology like that is not a known quantity, whereas the Retina 15-inch, it's like the 15-inch that you know and love, but it has an amazing screen.

01:24:20   The case is cool and smaller, and it has all the same parts as you had before, so that's not an issue.

01:24:24   And the keyboard is about the same as it was before, so that's not an issue, so it's just like win-win-win. Everybody loves it. Take my money, please.

01:24:30   So the one thing I want to go back to before we move on from this topic, which we've spent way too much time on, which I'm now contributing even more to,

01:24:37   is that, you know, Casey, your little segment there about low-end use and John and about your mom's optical drive and everything,

01:24:45   I think it's a very common thing for tech dudes like us to talk down about other people's needs, to say like, "Oh, well, this person, you know, they're just, you know, doing casual things or they're novices or they're doing office work.

01:25:03   They don't need, you know, technology or hardware spec X, Y, or Z, or they don't need advanced things."

01:25:08   And first of all, you know, we should mostly not be doing that because that's generally not—it's at best unproductive and at worst can be quite insulting and have other major issues with it.

01:25:22   So that's something that we as both us and all the listeners of this show should be a little more conscious of.

01:25:28   Like, you know, don't tell people what they don't need, basically. Like, if they're not asking, don't tell them.

01:25:34   Because, you know, the reality is lots of things about these laptops we don't need or most of the people buying them don't need.

01:25:42   Lots of things about them are better than they need to be for most of the time that things are mostly used.

01:25:48   But we have them anyway. Like, how many people buy the 15-inch because it has a big screen who don't need six cores?

01:25:57   Probably a lot, you know? But it's fine. Like, that's what it comes with. Who don't need—you know, I bought the 15s that had discrete GPUs.

01:26:05   I didn't need discrete GPUs. I didn't have an option to buy without it, so I just took it.

01:26:08   As I mentioned in previous shows, like, I have either never or almost never used HDMI ports on laptops, but I had them.

01:26:16   And you know what? Just in case if I was ever at a hotel room and needed that, it would have been nice to have.

01:26:21   You know, I never use the webcam, but some people do, fine.

01:26:27   Having extra things on a laptop just in case someone does need them is a good thing.

01:26:34   That's not something to try to, like, minimize with our current design trends obsession with ultra-minimalism for its own sake.

01:26:42   Like, minimalism is not an admirable trait. It's not something to aspire to. It doesn't justify itself.

01:26:53   It's just an attribute. It's something that's like, "Oh, wow, that is quite minimal."

01:26:58   That doesn't mean it's better than something that isn't.

01:27:00   Laptops are general-purpose machines, especially once you get into the middle and high end of the line.

01:27:07   Like, you can look at something like the 12-inch and you can say, "Well, it's fine to take a bunch of stuff out of that because it's the super extreme version of this thing that, like, you know, it's very compromised to hit this size goal and fine. Its buyers don't care. Fine."

01:27:19   But the rest of the laptops should be as general-purpose as possible because you don't know what people buying them are going to need.

01:27:27   You don't know if the person who you think is going to buy it for running Microsoft Excel every so often is next year going to start taking some programming courses and change their career and need to run Xcode and compile Swift.

01:27:39   Like, you don't know that. None of us know that. Even if it's something that we think we know well, like, say, a parent or a relative or something, and it's like, "Oh, I know they won't use it for much."

01:27:52   Well, you know what? Next year, what if there's an update to the Photos app that needs a bunch of CPU power to do something, you know? Or something like that, like, something that a lot of people do and all of a sudden this affects somebody that you didn't think, you know, had advanced needs.

01:28:06   So, like, it's never a good argument or position or statement to take or assumption to make that people only need low-end stuff or that, "Oh, you won't use this."

01:28:16   That's what, like, let people make their own decisions and, you know, let the future take its own course.

01:28:23   Yeah, that, believe it or not, was largely the point I was trying to make earlier, and I don't think I did a good job of it.

01:28:29   What I was trying to say is just that everyone can define pro differently, and what is absolutely critical for a photographer, like an SD card slot, could not matter less to someone who is only writing code in Xcode, you know?

01:28:43   And so I think that the most important thing you just said is that these, if these machines are really and truly for professionals, they need to be versatile.

01:28:54   Or they need to go the route that Jon was talking about of, like, Dell, you know, or Gateway 2000, you know, made to order.

01:28:59   But I think we all agree that'll never, ever, ever happen, even though it would be cool.

01:29:05   By the way, I have to interject. Your example of, you don't need the SD card slot if you're just going to use an Xcode.

01:29:13   One of the uses I had for my SD card slot in the past was when I would buy a laptop with too small of a built-in hard drive and bring it to WVDC every year where I had to download, like, seven gigs of betas and then 30 gigs of WVDC videos that wouldn't fit on my built-in hard drive.

01:29:31   I would bring an SD card and download a bunch of those. So even when I was only using Xcode, I still use that SD card slot.

01:29:40   And actually, to build on what you were saying earlier, that's even, that's a perfect encapsulation of why these things need to be more versatile.

01:29:49   Or maybe just USB-C needs to be better. I actually am not on the USB-C hate bandwagon.

01:29:56   I don't love it, but I don't mind it. I'm in dongle town, and I'm not there begrudgingly, but it is not paradise either. It's just a place.

01:30:04   Maybe because you only have one of them, you need more to hate them?

01:30:07   Maybe that's it. And actually, I do get quite frustrated at only having one port.

01:30:12   Even just having two ports would make my world, well, twice as good, I guess, wouldn't it?

01:30:16   But anyway, I don't know. I think it's just that, the three of us, I think, can all agree that it's just stinky that these machines aren't more versatile.

01:30:28   And even if you're firing up your email client right now to tell us, "They are versatile! That's what USB-C is all about!"

01:30:35   Yes, but A, please don't.

01:30:38   You can just hit Command-W now.

01:30:41   But the other thing about it is, USB-C has its own set of problems, and the rant on Cortex, as funny as it was, is applicable.

01:30:50   Like, when I was looking at this, whatever you called it, god-awful named dock that you were talking about earlier...

01:30:56   Are you referring to the Zartite DKT30C SPDVH D-30?

01:31:00   You know? Wouldn't you know? That's exactly what I'm referring to.

01:31:03   I had to dig to, like, triple, you know, cross-check that it wasn't a Thunderbolt 3 thing, it was only a USB-C thing.

01:31:12   Because they're the same cable! Well, except they're not. But they look like the same cable, but they ain't.

01:31:17   You don't have to check. It's only $72. There's no way it's Thunderbolt 3.

01:31:21   Fair point. But you see what I'm driving at, right?

01:31:23   So, like, even in this world where, which I am actually on board with the hypothetical future of USB-C,

01:31:30   where you can plug anything into anything, and it all just magically works, and your laptop can become anything!

01:31:36   It can even become a gaming PC, so to speak, with your humongous, ridiculously-sized external GPU.

01:31:43   But the reality is that USB-C is trying to cash checks that nobody is really able to cash.

01:31:49   That analogy took a real bad turn. But you get my point. It's not working. It's not working.

01:31:53   We'll fix it in post, don't worry. But it's just not working.

01:31:57   And so I think that we can all agree, and the sales, or lack of sales, have shown,

01:32:02   that the laptops are not scratching really anyone's itch as well as they used to.

01:32:09   All right, let's try to cheer each other up. Let's do some Ask ATP.

01:32:14   Chris Choudry writes, "Your Marco, Podcast 101 explanation prompted a question for me.

01:32:19   Why do we have a similar decentralized RSS-driven protocol for video?

01:32:22   Why are videos primarily hosted on a service like YouTube or Vimeo?

01:32:25   Is it just the acute ubiquity YouTube enjoys right now?

01:32:28   In other words, why did video podcasts never take off?"

01:32:31   We can kind of predict, and we can look at certain things that happened, or certain technical realities,

01:32:37   and say, "Well, it's probably this." The reality is, it probably has many factors,

01:32:42   many of which are just historical, the way things happen timing-wise.

01:32:46   But some of the technical stuff is pretty significant.

01:32:50   First of all, YouTube started getting popular a pretty long time ago.

01:32:53   And back then, in the early to mid-2000s, hosting video online was incredibly complicated and incredibly expensive.

01:33:04   And if you just want to host a podcast on your own web server or on your own CDN,

01:33:10   you can host a small podcast okay, without having major problems or having major bandwidth costs.

01:33:17   But if your podcast starts getting enough downloads that sponsors start caring about it, for instance,

01:33:22   that starts to be a pretty big bandwidth bill pretty fast.

01:33:25   And so what we needed really for podcasting to take off was dedicated podcast hosts that,

01:33:33   through large-scale economics basically, made podcast hosting easy and affordable.

01:33:41   And this is like Libsyn is where we host our podcast.

01:33:44   We have our website at Squarespace, it points to files on Libsyn.

01:33:48   Libsyn has been great, we've been with them the entire run of this show and Neutral before it.

01:33:52   They've been around forever.

01:33:54   They basically use the law of averages and scale to say,

01:33:57   "All right, well, it doesn't cost much to host most people's podcasts,

01:34:00   so the few like ours that do cost the money, I think it averages out and it's fine."

01:34:04   Same thing, Squarespace works the same way and everything.

01:34:07   Video, though, as large as podcasts are, a podcast might be like ten times the size of a webpage.

01:34:16   Well, video is like another ten times on top of that.

01:34:18   It's like a whole other additional, either order of magnitude or close to order of magnitude,

01:34:24   more data than podcasts.

01:34:26   It's also more sensitive to the needs of things like varying bit rates.

01:34:30   We can upload our podcast as a 64K MP3 mono and it sounds great to everybody.

01:34:37   It's also, though, small enough that you can stream it on cellular to a phone

01:34:43   and it doesn't use a ton of data or stutter and needs a buffer.

01:34:48   Video, though, doesn't work that way.

01:34:50   Video, it will use as much bandwidth as you can give it.

01:34:54   You want to have the super high quality one that is like 4K or 1080p

01:34:59   that you can watch on desktops or on your TV, on apps on your TV,

01:35:04   but then you also want to have smaller versions that are transcoded down

01:35:07   for when somebody browses on their cellular connection on their phone

01:35:11   or that you don't use seven gigs to stream the video or anything.

01:35:15   And so the files are way larger.

01:35:19   You need multiple versions of them to really host them effectively.

01:35:22   You probably also need multiple formats of the video to serve different types of clients

01:35:27   with all the different crazy different file formats that they support.

01:35:32   And all of these things used to be even worse than they are now.

01:35:35   Five, ten years ago, all these things were even harder and even more complicated for video.

01:35:39   Transcoding it took forever. It took a lot of CPU power.

01:35:43   There's all sorts of complications with hosting video.

01:35:46   So what all this added up to is hosting your own podcast was a little tricky,

01:35:52   but doable for most people.

01:35:55   Hosting your own video was way harder and way more expensive for most people.

01:36:02   And so that difference of degree caused there to be way more demand

01:36:08   for a service like YouTube where everything is centralized

01:36:11   and they kind of take care of all that for you compared to podcasting.

01:36:15   Podcasting is just simple enough and economical enough to host

01:36:20   and to consume and everything that it lent itself more to piggybacking on

01:36:26   what was initially the open blog infrastructure.

01:36:30   Whereas video, it was just so much more complicated and so much more data

01:36:35   and so much more bandwidth. And even back then, even players sucked.

01:36:40   When YouTube was getting popular, flash video had just barely become a thing

01:36:45   and it was still really hard to even make a video player that worked very well

01:36:50   on a web page or on people's computers or anything.

01:36:53   It was so much harder than audio ever was.

01:36:56   So I think that's mostly why things worked out that way.

01:37:00   And now there's just a whole bunch of network effect.

01:37:04   There's a whole bunch of lock-in where if you wanted to start your own video stuff

01:37:10   off of YouTube today, first of all, you still have all those complexities of

01:37:15   it is way bigger, it is still way more expensive to host it yourself,

01:37:18   and it is more complicated in the sense that you have to have multiple formats

01:37:21   and codecs and everything else. So you have all those problems.

01:37:24   But also, YouTube is where all the listeners or all the watchers are.

01:37:28   All the viewers are on YouTube.

01:37:30   And so there are other -- or Facebook, but Facebook just steals its content from YouTube.

01:37:34   Everything else that's not Facebook or YouTube basically doesn't matter for video

01:37:40   because that's where all the people are.

01:37:43   So you could do a video podcast that that technology exists.

01:37:47   I don't support it in Overcast, but most other apps support video podcasts.

01:37:50   They've always been pretty marginalized, though, because most people who watch video

01:37:56   are watching it on YouTube.

01:37:58   So I think it is a combination of technical aspects and also just the timing

01:38:02   and the way the empires were built.

01:38:05   The only thing I'd add is this is mostly an accident of history,

01:38:09   but once it got rolling in this direction, it was difficult to turn it back.

01:38:12   So podcasts have been and still are, for the most part, long-form kind of things,

01:38:18   whereas video started necessarily because it was so expensive and so large as short-form.

01:38:24   And with short-form and with it being video and video having more appeal to more people,

01:38:29   because people like to see things and not just hear them,

01:38:32   a centralized service like YouTube, its killer feature, the reason it got all those users,

01:38:36   is its ability to pick something that you might want to see next.

01:38:41   That's how YouTube is used today and the social network effect that you're surfing

01:38:46   from one thing to the next.

01:38:48   Oh, here's a clip of a cute dog.

01:38:49   Oh, here's a more clip of a cute dog.

01:38:50   Oh, here's a clip of a cute cat.

01:38:52   There are no cute cats.

01:38:54   Yeah, the way you consume video, like that kind of way,

01:38:56   especially when videos had to be short because you couldn't upload.

01:39:00   I forget what the time limit was on YouTube in the beginning, but it was short.

01:39:03   I think it was like 10 or 12 minutes, right?

01:39:05   Yeah, they're just so darn big, right?

01:39:07   Today, even with 30-minute videos and stuff, that's still how YouTube is consumed,

01:39:11   whereas no one surfs podcasts in those ways.

01:39:14   So a centralized site that can feed you related things or an algorithm can work

01:39:19   wouldn't really help with podcasts because no one is listening to --

01:39:23   because people watch the middle two minutes of a video,

01:39:26   then they skip to the next video and watch the first 30 seconds,

01:39:28   and they skip to the next video and watch the first three minutes, right?

01:39:30   No one does that with podcasts.

01:39:32   No one skips to one podcast and listens to two minutes in the middle,

01:39:34   skips to another podcast, listens to the beginning,

01:39:36   and skips to another podcast and scrubs to the end.

01:39:38   That's not how podcasts work, and you can't scrub the same way

01:39:41   as you can scrub with video.

01:39:44   So YouTube and video were a more natural fit for the snowball effect,

01:39:51   whereas even if podcasts had started off or audio --

01:39:54   basically recorded audio being served by a central service,

01:39:58   you wouldn't have had all the same network effects.

01:40:02   As Marco pointed out, it so happens that podcasts were lucky enough

01:40:06   to piggyback on the blog infrastructure, which was already open and decentralized.

01:40:10   There was no open and decentralized infrastructure for video for YouTube to piggyback on,

01:40:14   so it made its own thing, and so their paths diverged pretty early.

01:40:17   But I think video is definitely a more natural fit for a winner-takes-all social media,

01:40:24   gather up all the users and eyeballs using an algorithm that feeds them what they want.

01:40:28   Like, that model works better with video than it does with long-form audio.

01:40:33   Dominic writes, "Why do people entrust their entire digital life to the cloud?

01:40:37   The reason, of course, is simple -- because their files are encrypted."

01:40:41   Well, that was an easy ask, A.T.P. No, Dominic continues,

01:40:44   "But here's my certainly somewhat naive question.

01:40:46   How do we actually know that today's encryption algorithms cannot be broken in the near future?

01:40:51   What makes everyone so darn sure that the data uploaded to Backblaze, Crashpla, etc.

01:40:55   can't be decrypted retroactively in a few years,

01:40:57   meaning within our lifetime by, say, quantum computers?

01:41:00   I don't trust the whole thing because I am obviously not a crypto expert

01:41:03   and can only listen to my gut feeling.

01:41:05   Can you please shed some light on this and calm my gut?"

01:41:08   I mean, I am not a crypto expert, but as far as I knew,

01:41:12   math pretty much says that this is not going to be a thing

01:41:14   unless there is an unbelievably dramatic change in computing power,

01:41:18   like maybe quantum computing.

01:41:20   I have to un-calm both of your guts then, apparently.

01:41:23   You know, how do we actually know today's encryption algorithms cannot be broken in the near future?

01:41:28   You know, within our lifetime? We don't. We absolutely don't.

01:41:30   Weaknesses in cryptographic algorithms are found all the time.

01:41:34   And it may very well be that people listening to this now live long enough to see things that are encrypted

01:41:39   with today's reasonable encryption technology are trivially crackable.

01:41:43   That could totally happen.

01:41:44   But to get back to the calming part,

01:41:48   the actual mathematical computational security of the encryption of your data

01:41:55   is like the least important thing when it comes to actually protecting your data.

01:41:58   Your data is going to get leaked due to social engineering, human error,

01:42:03   hacks, malware.

01:42:05   Brute forcing the cryptographic algorithms is very low on the list of things that you should be concerned about.

01:42:12   Not because it's impossible, but because there are so many easier ways to get your data.

01:42:16   That's what everyone's using.

01:42:18   That's what you should be worried about. It has nothing to do with the cloud.

01:42:20   Is your data secure if you never read it and write it and bury it in a giant safe in your backyard?

01:42:27   But then you can't access it, right?

01:42:29   There's this... people are paranoid about this.

01:42:33   It's like the alternative is don't do this, which is definitely safer.

01:42:37   Like, don't use computers. Don't put your stuff in the cloud.

01:42:39   Like, don't do all that stuff.

01:42:41   But it's, you know, there is no safe haven.

01:42:46   We should all be aware of these things and use best practices and keep up with it and do all that stuff.

01:42:50   Just, you know, just like you learn how to drive safely and how to have a home without accidentally burning it down.

01:42:56   Like, there are things we need to learn about the way that we live that can make our lives safer.

01:43:00   But if your concern is about strength of cryptography, there's nothing you can do about that.

01:43:07   Don't worry about it. Other people are trying to take care of it.

01:43:10   It's not 100% safe. Nothing is.

01:43:12   But people will get your data some other way, way before they brute force crack the encryption on backblaze.

01:43:18   Friend of the show, Mark Edwards, did not write this for Ask ATP, but I couldn't resist because it was so good.

01:43:24   Which macOS feature will be removed first?

01:43:26   And he provides three pairings.

01:43:29   Dashboard or remote disk?

01:43:31   So, dashboard is the thing that I think is off by default, or you can put like little widgets on your screen, which was very popular back, I don't know, 10, 15 years ago.

01:43:40   What was the Yahoo thing, or the thing that was bought by Yahoo? Confabulator or something like that?

01:43:44   Confabulator, yep.

01:43:46   So that's basically dashboard, the same thing.

01:43:49   And then remote disk, that's the thing where I can use another computer CD-ROM, is that right?

01:43:53   Yes, it was introduced with the MacBook Air, the first MacBook Air, because it didn't have an optical drive.

01:43:58   And so they introduced a feature called remote disk, which would allow you to use the optical drive from your big Mac or from someone else's Mac on your little MacBook Air that didn't have one.

01:44:08   So which one of these do we think will go first, will be removed first? Let's start with Marco.

01:44:13   It's a tricky question, because I think both dashboard and remote disk are probably protected by most people at Apple who would make such decisions, either not knowing that they're there or having forgotten that they're there.

01:44:28   So I think it's pretty unlikely that either of them would be there for long.

01:44:35   I'm going to say remote disk will be removed first only because it still shows up in Finder windows, in the sidebar, as like under devices.

01:44:44   And that's just kind of always there. So I'm guessing somebody will, it's more visible than dashboard.

01:44:50   Dashboard, you have to hit a certain shortcut key to enable it if it's even enabled by default, right? You said it might not be?

01:44:55   I don't think it is. It doesn't really matter.

01:44:58   But yes, remote disk is visible in Finder. So I'm guessing somebody will see that before they'll see dashboard and be like, we should probably take that out.

01:45:06   John?

01:45:07   I think this one's easy. Dashboard will be removed first. I don't even understand how it still exists.

01:45:13   And this is speaking as someone who literally uses dashboard every day and wishes it was still developed.

01:45:18   But it amazes me that dashboard still exists. It almost certainly is going to be removed first.

01:45:23   As for remote disk in the Finder, maybe it only shows up if you have an available remote disk. Maybe it doesn't show up if it doesn't see another Mac through like Bonjour or whatever.

01:45:32   ZeroConf, Rendezvous, blah, blah, blah.

01:45:34   Anyway, dashboard. Yeah, I cannot understand how dashboard still exists. It seems to me that it has to go first.

01:45:39   What are you using it for?

01:45:41   I use it to check the weather. I use it to look at stock prices.

01:45:44   And I use it with the web clips feature that was added later in dashboard's life to see a whole bunch of what are they?

01:45:51   I think they're ganglia graphs. I think ganglia graphs? I don't know. Maybe they're graphite graphs.

01:45:57   Anyway, web clips of web pages that are sitting on my Mac that are just HTML files that show me metrics from various metrics dashboards.

01:46:06   So it's literally like a dashboard. I throw my mouse cursor into the corner. Yes, I have a hot corner for dashboard. It's the lower left.

01:46:12   And I see a bunch of graphs that are relevant to my work. And I can check the weather and I can look at a calendar and I can look words up in the dictionary by typing them into the dictionary widget. And I can see stock prices.

01:46:23   I think Jon's right that dashboard's going to go first. Because remote disk, you could make an argument, could maybe, I guess dashboard does have utility too.

01:46:32   I was going to say, you know, remote disk has utility whereas dashboard doesn't. But that's not fair. But I just think dashboard's going first.

01:46:38   Alright, the next pairing. DVD player or OpenGL? And Jon, let's have you start first.

01:46:44   Oh, they mean like remove, remove, not deprecated. DVD player? I guess because you only need DVD player. Well, no, that's not right. Let me think about this some more.

01:46:56   So you only need an optical drive, but what if you attach that stupid external one that they...

01:47:01   No, this is actually really easy. DVD player is not 64-bit.

01:47:06   They didn't, I thought they updated it.

01:47:08   Oh, maybe in Mojave did they? I'm not running Mojave yet. But, because it seems like, you know, first of all, like they don't really need it.

01:47:15   It's not Blu-ray player, it's DVD player.

01:47:17   Right, like DVD player is, I think it is certainly no longer necessary for most people who would be running the latest OS.

01:47:26   Like there are still Macs in service, like your mom's, that has, you know, the optical drive that's used to play DVDs.

01:47:32   But I think those people are less and less likely to be running the newest OSes. Or to even be running on hardware that can run the newest OSes.

01:47:41   So I think DVD player's removal would be first, even if apparently people in the chat are saying that it is updated in Mojave.

01:47:49   Yeah, there is a 64-bit version of it.

01:47:51   Boy, man, who, what poor engineer had to do that?

01:47:54   It's probably not, like a 64-bit port of a program that hasn't had new features added in years is probably not that bad.

01:48:00   Well, it depends on what APIs it was using. Anyway, so, but I'm still going to say DVD player first because I think the removal of DVD player will have fewer problems and affect fewer people than the removal of OpenGL would.

01:48:15   Maybe it will permit me to Syracuse with this question briefly. The question is, which Mac OS feature will be removed first?

01:48:23   The implication is that removal means, like, what does it even mean in an age where you can't buy the operating system separately? Like, what does that mean?

01:48:33   Does that mean if you buy a Mac, a brand new Mac, and you take it out of the box and you open it up, the DVD player isn't there? Is that what removal means?

01:48:39   That's what I would assume that would mean, yeah.

01:48:41   Because sometimes when you buy a Mac and you take it out of the box and you open it up, there are things like in the applications folder that are not part of the OS, right?

01:48:49   So there are various times Apple has bundled programs with Macs that are not part of the OS, right?

01:48:54   So, like, it's, I kind of get what they're going for, but for things like DVD player, I can imagine it being available to download.

01:49:01   Now that they've done a 64-bit port, I can imagine them making it available to download for a long time.

01:49:05   And I can even imagine it coming on your Mac, like in a utility folder or some crap.

01:49:11   But I can also imagine if you were to wipe your disk and do a fresh install that it's not there.

01:49:15   And so how does that, you know, this is actually, there's a lot of nuance to this question, but anyway, we'll take it at face value saying you buy a new Mac, you open the lid, you load the thing up as DVD player there.

01:49:25   Because they did a 64-bit, I have to say OpenGL, because Apple has not, has had it in for OpenGL for a long time.

01:49:32   They are super gung-ho on metal.

01:49:34   Third-party OpenGL libraries will certainly exist.

01:49:39   Third-party DVD players probably already do exist but are not that popular, so I'm going to say OpenGL leaves before it's impossible to get DVD player.

01:49:46   Yeah, here again, I agree with Jon on this, so I think Jon and I are in agreement twice over, and Marco, you're standing by yourself.

01:49:53   Let's see if we can bring it back together now, Marco.

01:49:55   Chess or Graffr. I didn't even remember or know that there is a graphing calculator, for lack of a better way of describing it, but basically a thing that can make graphs, mathematical graphs, built into macOS.

01:50:07   Who knew? I knew, because graphing calculator was the most impressive feature of the PowerPC architecture change.

01:50:15   When the PowerPC Macs came out and you wanted to demonstrate, great, so it's a PowerPC Mac, who the hell cares, all my software broke, why do I care about this?

01:50:25   You show someone graphing calculator and they go, "Ooh, ah, that's amazing and fast. Look how fast it can do graphs. Look, the graphs are kind of 3D."

01:50:35   Graffr is, I don't even know if it shares any of the code base with that, but it's the spiritual successor to graphing calculator.

01:50:42   There's a great story, by the way, about graphing calculator that you should all read. I think it's in, is it in folklore.org? I don't remember where that is, but just Google for graphing calculator origin story Apple or some crap like that, and it'll probably be the number one hit.

01:50:53   So Marco, which is first to go?

01:50:55   I have, I've just launched both of these apps. I think for the first time ever on any Mac.

01:51:02   You never launched chess? Come on.

01:51:04   I don't think I've ever, I didn't even know, I knew vaguely there was a chess app, but I'm not, like I know how to play chess, but I don't play chess. So I just never thought to launch it.

01:51:15   Graffr, I don't think I knew existed, and honestly, I'm kind of mad because I would have used this a lot.

01:51:22   So now I will, I hope I remember this exists because I occasionally want to do this when I'm like, you know, writing a new algorithm for something. I kind of want to see, you know, how does this function grow or whatever and or how does this map the way that doesn't the way I need to see, I actually would use this.

01:51:38   So that's both frustrating and kind of enlightening. When I first launched chess, it prompted me to download a 1.2 gigabyte voice assist package and also put up an iCloud login sheet.

01:51:55   But like in the wrong spot over the window, like it's like a detached sheet that's supposed to be window modal, but it's not at the top of the window. It's like kind of in the middle, asking me to sign into the account in iCloud that I'm already signed into.

01:52:09   So it sure looks like no one's ever launched in this chess app. Like it sure looks like this. This is, it appears to have iCloud support for some reason, maybe for, you know, game center kind of stuff. I don't know.

01:52:20   At the top, it says Marco Arment dash computer new game. So I'm guessing this has some kind of advanced functionality that might break.

01:52:31   Whereas Grafeur seems pretty standalone, like it seems like a lot of pretty low level things would have to break or die for Grafeur to die. So I'm actually going to say chess.

01:52:44   Well, perhaps unbeknownst to Marco, since he doesn't seem to know what's installed on this computer, chess has its origins from next. Right.

01:52:52   So it has a long, it's a survivor kind of like Grafeur and calculator has its origins, even though I, again, there may be nothing to share with their original application, has its spiritual origins, if not its code origins with classic Mac OS.

01:53:04   So chess comes from next step. I feel like chess is hard to kill. I feel like it's a, it's a classy thing. Chess is like snooty and high class. Right.

01:53:16   But same thing, Grafeur, Grafeur math is, math is, is fancy too.

01:53:21   All the things that you were complaining about with chess means that like, if you haven't been noticing, occasionally I would mention this in a Mac OS X review, they've been adding features to chess. Like someone somewhere is like, this year I'm going to add, like, I remember like when really bad Mac speech recognition was ported from classic Mac OS to Mac OS X.

01:53:41   I think they had a feature where you could say chess moves and it would do them like instead of using the mouse. Right. You mentioned that the game center stuff and the downloading of the voice thing, like maybe the voice thing is part of that.

01:53:53   Like I think people are developing chess.

01:53:55   It certainly doesn't have a very good first run experience.

01:53:58   I'm going to say, I'm going to say Grafeur loses because I'm going to say that the next people are in control and that they'll, that there will always be a game called chess on here because they will never let it die and Grafeur, like I don't have, I don't know if Grafeur is being developed whereas chess people keep adding stuff to it. So I'm going to say Grafeur goes first.

01:54:15   Yeah, I agree with Jon and I agree with Jon because chess is something that I would argue almost anyone could be interested in, whereas not as many people will be interested in graphing equations. So I think Grafeur goes first.

01:54:29   What a fantastic bit that was. Thanks Mark Edwards.

01:54:32   There's lots of stuff installed on your computer if you don't know it. Go check out the application utilities folders sometime or install Xcode in the graphics, the graphics tools from Xcode, which are harder and harder to find, but they're cool.

01:54:42   All right, thanks to our sponsors this week, Away, Aftershocks and Eero, and we will see you next week.

01:54:50   Now the show is over. They didn't even mean to begin. Cause it was accidental. Accidental. Oh, it was accidental. Accidental.

01:55:04   Jon didn't do any research. Marco and Casey wouldn't let him cause it was accidental. Accidental. It was accidental. Accidental.

01:55:14   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. So that's Casey List M-A-R-C-O-A-R-M.

01:55:33   N-T-M-A-R-C-O-R-M-N-S-I-R-A-C-U-S-A-C-R-A-C-U-S-A. It's accidental. Accidental. They didn't mean to. Accidental. Accidental. Tech podcast so long.

01:55:53   Jon, tell me about bees.

01:55:55   What is this about? Bees are back. My daughter told me today. She said the wasps are back. But I don't think they're wasps. I don't want to get up close to see. Do their stingers have barbs or are they smooth? Can it sting you repeatedly with no injury to itself or is it one stinging out? I don't want to find out the answer to that question. Anyway.

01:56:18   Isn't it just like, aren't wasps, don't they have an extra segment? Like they look like big ants, whereas bees look like bees?

01:56:24   Yeah, I know. I'm not going to make one. I think these are just bees. But the key thing that I care about in terms of wasps versus bees is wasps equals multiple stings without dying. That's bad.

01:56:34   Yeah, and they tend to also be more aggressive. Like when you – if you upset a wasp hive, like you're going to have a bad day. Whereas if you upset a couple of bees, like they might not notice or care.

01:56:45   Yeah. Maybe I'll try to get a macro photo of these later. Anyway, I've had troubles in the past where the people who did a shoddy job siding my house left little gaps that these insects love to go into and they would build hives inside my walls.

01:56:59   And I can't be having that. So I've – the grandiose vision in my head of solving this problem last time is that I will make my house their tomb.

01:57:08   You choose to build a hive inside my walls? Guess what? I'm sealing you in there. Enjoy it. My house is now your tomb. So I did that last year – or not last year, a couple of years ago by finding the opening and finding my way in there and clogging it up with stuff that these stupid bees can't get through.

01:57:26   What do you use? Like a spray foam thing? Like great stuff? Or you use some – are you like shoving newspaper in there? Like what's going on?

01:57:42   I used the wasp and bee stuff. But that's really for like soaking a hive that's hanging from a tree. And that's not the situation I was in. They were like in my walls. But I tried that anyway and they laughed it off. So I was like fine, you were being, you know, you're being entombed. And so expanding foam would work and I think I used some of that.

01:58:00   But I used like silicone caulk to like sort of cap it. Right? So they were thoroughly sealed. The problem with the old one is that it was like along a windowsill and there were all sorts of places where they could get in so I kind of had to seal up the whole thing.

01:58:13   But yeah, expanding foam would definitely do it. That's what I plan to use this time is expanding foam. But here's the trick. So you have a tiny little gap that seems like – how can insects even squeeze their little bodies in there? And yet they do, right? And you see them flying in and out, right?

01:58:26   So if you're putting up there, because it's never in a convenient place, and using the silicone caulk or spraying the expanding foam or whatever it is that you're going to do to seal it up, they're not going to be happy when you're doing this.

01:58:39   They're not going to sit out and be by and go, "Hey, what you doing, buddy? You seem like you're doing something to our hive. Are you poking something into our hive? We're cool with that." No, they're not going to be cool with it.

01:58:49   And that's the trick. And of course, me, with my priorities, my first thought is, because I'm going to use expanding foam this time, is I need to put masking tape all around the area because when the expanding foam expands, I don't want it expanding onto my trim and siding because it's a pain in the ass to get off anyone who's ever used expanding foam.

01:59:06   So I'm going to put the masking tape down and then let the expanding foam go and run away. And then when it dries, come back and peel off the masking tape and scrape off the excess foam, and I'll have a nice, neat little plug into the hole.

01:59:21   So that's my plan. My execution of that plan has been thwarted by the fact that putting masking tape near the entrance to the hive pisses them off, something awful.

01:59:30   So I put one piece of tape and then run away, and then they swarm like angry bees, because they're angry bees, for a surprisingly long amount of time. I'm doing it at dusk. They're supposed to be like chill at dusk.

01:59:42   And so I come back 15, 20 minutes later, like, "Have you calmed down? Now I can put up a second piece of tape. Oh, now it's swarm time again."

01:59:49   Right before the show, like literally moments before the show, it's dark outside. And I said, "You've got to be asleep now, stupid bees." So I go out there in the dark. Do bees sleep?

02:00:00   They are dormant in the nighttime for the most part, because they don't have night vision. So they can't really get anything done in the dark.

02:00:06   I had to turn on the porch light to be able to see them because they're right by my front door. And I went up there on my ladder, and I was starting putting tapes, and for the most part, they were dormant.

02:00:15   In fact, I could see one just hanging out in the entrance of the hive, but he wasn't bothering me. But there was one stupid bee that didn't get in for the night, that's just like do-de-do, banging into the siding and everything, and nesting in my hair and crawling on the inside of my glasses lens and doing other things that are very disconcerting.

02:00:33   Oh, God. This is no good.

02:00:35   Very disconcerting. And then, of course, there are moths and bugs all over the place smacking into me, all of which feel like they could be a bee about to sting me.

02:00:43   Right.

02:00:44   You know, so anyway.

02:00:46   Why are you still doing this?

02:00:48   What do you mean still?

02:00:49   Why have you not hired this job out?

02:00:51   Oh, no, I'm not hiring this job out. This is personal.

02:00:54   [laughter]

02:00:56   My house will be their tomb.

02:00:59   I'm sealing these bees in. Yeah, I'm going to handle it. In case anyone's asking, I have been stung by many, many bees, yellow jackets, wasps over my life, many of them.

02:01:10   I have had bees inside my T-shirt. I have run screaming from a giant hive. I have smashed hives with rocks. I have knocked hives out of trees. I have a long -- what was the tagline for those terrible movies where it was like the battle between the werewolves and the vampires?

02:01:25   You're asking us this question.

02:01:27   I'm asking the wrong crap. Someone from the Uncomfortable here, they would tell me. But there's like a centuries-long battle between me and the whatever category of insect that bees are in.

02:01:38   Bees?

02:01:39   Yeah, I need to do this myself. I think I'll be able to. Anyway, I put a lot of extra tape in there before I had to run away. That stupid dodie-dobie was freaking me out and then I had to come in and podcast.

02:01:49   So maybe tomorrow I will spray the phone, but probably chances are I'll try to apply more tape and anger them some more. So far, no stinks.

02:01:57   I'm just stupefied by why you are doing this. I think I posted to Slack a couple years ago when I battled the first round of them. I posted a picture of myself wearing my bee protective outfit. Do you remember that?

02:02:13   I don't think so.

02:02:15   So it was like a thousand degrees. It was really, really hot and humid and I'm wearing sweatpants with the socks pulled over them, a giant sweatshirt and a knit hood or something over my head. My wife had knit or something.

02:02:31   I was trying to cover every inch of my body and it was a thousand degrees and I was sweating through every inch of that clothes. I took a picture of me and I think I posted it to Slack. I can find it again.

02:02:41   This time I'm there with shorts and a t-shirt, which is why I'm freaking out a little bit more when the thing is flying all over the place. When it crawled around the inside of my glasses lens, I did tear my glasses off and leap from the ladder and run away. It was very fraught.

02:02:54   We had an in-ground infestation many years ago that we were trying to take care of ourselves. I can't find the image right now, but suffice it to say we did the exact same thing. We loaded up with 13 layers and sweatpants, even though it was July or something like that.

02:03:12   Down here we actually have summer. We were sweating to death. It's funny you bring all this up because just the other day I saw this float by on Twitter and somebody linked it from Cocky, actually.

02:03:24   A comprehensive guide to yellow stripey things. I have no idea if this is accurate or not. It's probably all BS, but oh man is it funny. We'll put a link to it in the show notes. It is quite amusing.

02:03:35   Yeah, I had a bad time with yellow jackets before. There have occasionally been beehives that are in cracks in my roof or cracks in the eaves in our house and everything.

02:03:47   They've never gotten bad enough that I would actually call somebody to come deal with it, but the thought of dealing with it myself never crossed my mind.

02:03:58   That was never under consideration at all. I am not going to put on a giant net and gloves and everything and try to masking tape over the entrance to me.

02:04:12   I'm not masking tape over the entrance. I'm masking tape around the entrance to protect the entrance from the foam I'm going to put in there that is going to seal this up.

02:04:20   These things are not good diggers. Anything that seals it up good. Paper won't do it probably, but any kind of foam or caulk or anything like that, they can't get through that. They're sealed in.

02:04:33   I feel like they only have one way in and one way out and it's this little tiny opening and it's going to solve the problem.

02:04:40   I fully support this guide's definition of yellow jackets.

02:04:44   These things look like yellow jackets, but they're not yellow. They're not that yellow. I don't know what the hell they are. Maybe they're just honey bees. I don't know. Maybe I'll try to save one.

02:04:53   One of the things I learned through my long centuries of battling these creatures is do not crush them near the entrance to their hive because crushed bees make the other bees super angry.

02:05:03   Whatever. The smell of crushed bees, don't do it. It's tempting. They're just laying there. It's like, "I'm going to crush this one and then I'll be safer as I do the rest of my work." Do not do it.

02:05:12   The definition of yellow jacket as per the comprehensive guide to yellow stripy things is as follows.

02:05:17   Wants your food and will fight you for it. Never leaves you alone. Will sting you just for the fun of it. And is just a jerk.

02:05:25   Nice words of institutions there.

02:05:27   It's a little more colorful than that, but you get the idea.

02:05:29   If you've ever been stung by one or seven, you would say, "It's just a s***hole the way this guide does."

02:05:36   When I was a kid, the second house we lived in had a yellow jacket hive under a set of rocks that I fought with the entire time we lived there.

02:05:45   You try to crush it underneath the rocks, but obviously it's under the ground underneath there too.

02:05:49   And boy, I spent a lot of time… I was young and didn't have the weapons of mass bee destruction at my disposal yet.

02:05:58   So yellow jackets were the ones that would most often get caught inside my clothing. I remember running… My retreat was I would run inside one of the family's cars and then they'd be in the car with me and it was bad.

02:06:08   Oh no.

02:06:09   It was bad. They were inside my clothes and they were in the car and it was a bad situation. Many, many times I would do this.

02:06:15   Yeah, because they'll chase you too. If you just run away, they're not like, "Okay, we don't care anymore."

02:06:21   They got nothing else to do today.

02:06:23   Exactly. They will chase you and will not give up and can sting you lots of times. Yeah, they're fun.

02:06:29   I strongly suggest you consider hiring a professional to do this job. This seems like…

02:06:36   I am a professional. That's why I'm trying to communicate with you.

02:06:39   [Laughter]

02:06:41   I've handled this before. I will handle it again.

02:06:43   Oh my God.

02:06:45   Marco, I don't know if you've met John Syracuse, but how can I put this gently? He's a cheap bastard and there's no way that he's going to hire this out, let alone the fact that he wants to seal them in a tomb inside his house. There's no way John will be paying to hire this out. It's not happening.

02:07:03   I got a roof leak. You want to fix that too?

02:07:05   Yeah, I don't even know how much someone would charge and I think the person who would deal with it would get stung. I'm not going to get stung. I'm going to win.

02:07:13   Oh yeah.

02:07:14   I didn't get stung last time.

02:07:15   You're going to do it perfectly. You're going to somehow defeat this colony of what sounds like probably wasps without getting stung.

02:07:22   I did it last time. I did it for the last one. When I was a kid back in the house with the yellow jackets, I was a dumb kid. Now I am a smarter adult who may get stung, but probably won't.

02:07:34   Why don't you take the bird that occasionally makes noise against your house.

02:07:39   You have to eat the friggin' bees.

02:07:41   Turn the bird against the bees and just see who wins. If they both lose, both problems are solved.

02:07:46   The bird hasn't been around lately, so that's a problem I haven't been able to solve. I do not have extensive experience dealing with a woodpecker that thinks my house is a musical instrument.

02:07:55   So I am just at the mercy of the bird, but thankfully it has not been hanging out lately. But the bees, I know what to do.

02:08:02   Does anybody make drones that can apply masking tape and spray foam?

02:08:06   It's too much of a precision operation.

02:08:11   [BEEPING]