200: I Had a Dream About the Mac Pro


00:00:00   Well, I think even today's PC's, they can't be that bad, can they?

00:00:03   They don't have ethernet on a card.

00:00:05   I remember the bad old days when you'd get a USB card.

00:00:07   You're like, "Oh, you've got USB, yeah, but I only take up one of my PC's."

00:00:11   I have six PC iSlots, so it's not a big deal.

00:00:13   Well, you would have a card for the fast...

00:00:16   You'd have a USB 2.0 card with two USB 2.0 slots on it,

00:00:20   and then on your motherboard's little riser thing, where all the other ports were.

00:00:23   Yeah, the 1.1 for your keyboard and mouse.

00:00:25   Yeah, then you'd have the slow ports.

00:00:26   And then plus the PS/2 port, right?

00:00:28   because that's probably what your keyboard and mouse connected to if you had a Dell.

00:00:30   Yeah, you'd have two PS/2 ports, and they'd be color-coded helpfully with the...

00:00:33   Right, with the teal one for the mouse and the lime green one for the...

00:00:37   What was that standard called? The standard that gave all those ugly colors in the late

00:00:42   90s? You're talking about with the PS/2 port, like

00:00:44   the mouse was purpley? Yeah, they were color-coded. They were like

00:00:47   pastel. Yeah, when they got colored, it was like

00:00:49   around 1998 or so, and there was a standard released by the PC group of whoever. They

00:00:55   They all agreed to use these colors.

00:00:57   - And they were ugly colors.

00:00:58   - Oh, horrendous, and they're still in use today.

00:01:01   I think the colors have not changed.

00:01:02   The ports have changed somewhat,

00:01:04   but I'm pretty sure it's still the exact same colors.

00:01:08   - PC-97 introduced color code for PS/2 keyboard,

00:01:11   purple, and mouse green.

00:01:12   - Yeah, I think that's it.

00:01:13   PC system design guide.

00:01:15   - Were there more, though?

00:01:16   'Cause there were all sorts of,

00:01:17   there was the sound one, oh yeah, here we are, yeah.

00:01:19   Color coding scheme, PC-99.

00:01:22   - Perhaps the most end-user visible

00:01:24   and lasting impact of PC 99 was that it introduced

00:01:26   a color code for various standard types of plugs

00:01:28   and connectors used on PCs.

00:01:31   - Sky blue is USB 3.0 super speed.

00:01:34   - Oh, good.

00:01:35   - Burgundy is parallel port.

00:01:36   Teal or turquoise, serial port.

00:01:39   - I think the sound ones are the ugliest,

00:01:41   like the pink light blue, lime green,

00:01:43   those are always like the ugliest ones

00:01:45   on the back of a case.

00:01:46   - It made every PC extra ugly,

00:01:48   'cause no matter how tasteful you made your case,

00:01:49   you'd like, they'd put the little plastic ring

00:01:51   around all the little audio things,

00:01:52   It was just like a rainbow of ugly pastel.

00:01:55   - Oh my God, and then the audio plugs

00:01:59   that would be on the end of the cables

00:02:00   would also be those colors so you could easily line them up.

00:02:02   Oh my God, so this is just a library

00:02:06   of horrible 90s colors right here.

00:02:08   - It was like a tasteless person's idea

00:02:10   of solving a problem that users don't know

00:02:12   where stuff plug into on the back of their PCs.

00:02:14   Let's color code them all is problem number one.

00:02:17   Problem number two is if we're gonna color code them all,

00:02:18   let's make them all ugly colors

00:02:20   that all clash with each other

00:02:21   and will never match any peaceful PC ever made.

00:02:24   - Exactly.

00:02:25   Oh, PC 99.

00:02:26   It is our 200th episode spectacular.

00:02:32   - Before we go totally off the rails,

00:02:33   I'd like to have a touchy-feely moment,

00:02:35   since I am, well, I used to be

00:02:37   the touchy-feely person in chief,

00:02:38   but since "Reconcilable Differences" is a thing,

00:02:42   I don't know if I am anymore, but I do wanna say--

00:02:45   - What's that supposed to mean?

00:02:46   - That "Reconcilable Differences" is like analog,

00:02:49   but with people who actually know what they're talking about

00:02:51   with all respect to Mike Hurley, whom I love.

00:02:52   - Wait, are you suggesting though,

00:02:54   because you're talking about the three of us,

00:02:55   are you suggesting that Jon is the touchy-feely one

00:02:58   on that show?

00:02:59   - Jon is the dark horse touchy-feely one, I'd say.

00:03:04   But anyway, we're getting sidetracked again

00:03:08   in typical ATP style.

00:03:09   This is the 200th episode if I've ever heard it.

00:03:12   No, but I wanted to take a moment

00:03:13   and genuinely from the bottom of my heart

00:03:15   thank every single one of our listeners,

00:03:17   past, present, future, every single one of you.

00:03:20   Those crazy people who go all the way back in time to listen from the beginning when

00:03:24   they discover the show later in the run.

00:03:27   For the 13 of you that listened to "Neutral," I'm sure that was sufficiently painful and

00:03:32   I apologize on behalf of all three of us.

00:03:35   But truly and genuinely, being a part of the show has been a tremendous highlight of my

00:03:41   life and has afforded my family some things that we may not have been able to do otherwise.

00:03:46   Thanks to all of the listeners, even the ones who write us cranky emails.

00:03:50   appreciate you. The ones who write us lovely emails, we really appreciate you. And even

00:03:54   if you listen and don't write in, we appreciate you too. So thank you from all of us to all

00:04:00   of you for being you and for listening to the show. And also on a somber note, if I

00:04:06   can't remember my Gmail password, oh there we go. This is going to be a short show because

00:04:09   I can't see the damn show notes, but I just remembered it. So we're good.

00:04:13   So what is it that makes somebody buy a white car exactly?

00:04:16   Oh, here we go again. God, you're such a dick. Anyway, it's funny, you know, looking

00:04:22   back on that very first episode of "Neutral," had I known that that was going to be the

00:04:29   first released episode, I probably would have started with a better phrase. My introductory

00:04:34   phrase to the world would have been something better than...

00:04:39   What is it that makes somebody buy a white car?

00:04:42   Oh, you're a dick.

00:04:45   That seems about right. What are you complaining about? That's like on the nose.

00:04:52   Oh, man.

00:04:53   I mean, are we really that different now?

00:04:55   No, but I would have—had I known better at the time, I would have chosen a better

00:05:01   introductory phrase. Because if you think about it, I mean, that was my very first appearance

00:05:05   on any podcast ever. And my first appearance was "Getting Grumpy at You," which, again,

00:05:11   maybe is fitting in retrospect.

00:05:14   - Now we just sound better, but it's the same,

00:05:16   we're the same people doing basically the same show.

00:05:19   Now just, we sound better and the car stuff

00:05:22   tends to wait 'til the end of the show.

00:05:24   - Yeah, that is accurate.

00:05:25   It is wild to me to think, and actually I was just

00:05:30   talking to a friend of mine at work at lunch today.

00:05:33   He was reflecting on the time when the two of us

00:05:36   were jackals in the five by five chat room,

00:05:38   and here it is, I'm talking with you guys every single week,

00:05:41   which is crazy, it's bananas,

00:05:43   and I'm very thankful for it.

00:05:45   And again, I'm thankful for all our listeners.

00:05:46   And this touchy-feeling moment is gonna end in a moment,

00:05:49   but it is important to me anyway,

00:05:51   and I think I speak for the other two guys,

00:05:53   it's important to all of us,

00:05:54   that you guys know that we appreciate you

00:05:58   despite the fish that we play

00:05:59   before the livestream every week.

00:06:01   - We all like you, even John.

00:06:03   (laughing)

00:06:04   - Especially the people who go back

00:06:05   and listen from the beginning,

00:06:06   because those are the best people.

00:06:08   - Not that it's a competition.

00:06:09   - 'Cause there's so much important continuity

00:06:11   that you'll be missing out on if you don't do that.

00:06:14   And it's becoming increasingly hard to do that

00:06:16   as time passes, so better hurry up

00:06:18   and go through that back catalog.

00:06:19   Those people are the best.

00:06:21   - That's the thing.

00:06:21   I mean, 'cause these aren't 200 short shows.

00:06:24   - No.

00:06:25   Well, the first five were.

00:06:27   Wasn't the first episode 15 minutes or something like that?

00:06:29   - Yeah, 'cause it was like the after show of "Neutral"

00:06:30   that we just recorded one night and threw up on SoundCloud.

00:06:33   - It was an inversion where the after show became the show

00:06:35   and the show became the after show.

00:06:36   (laughing)

00:06:38   - Oh, man.

00:06:39   But to think that it was something like March of 2013 that we formally announced that this

00:06:47   was a thing, and here it is.

00:06:50   It's December of 2016, and with the exception of the one crossover episode, all three of

00:06:55   us have been on every single episode for 200 episodes every single week without fail.

00:07:01   And in the grand scheme of things, it's not a difficult thing to talk to your buddies

00:07:05   at home in front of your own computer for a couple hours each week. But you'd be surprised

00:07:10   how challenging it can become, especially with holiday schedules as we're coming into.

00:07:15   So I appreciate the two of you guys sticking with me, and I appreciate all the listeners

00:07:18   sticking with us. And with that touchy-feely moment done, unless you guys have something

00:07:22   to add, we can go on to a normal, completely accidental show.

00:07:26   [music]

00:07:27   Well, Marko, we'll start some kind of celebratory 200-episode sound at this point in the podcast.

00:07:33   No pressure.

00:07:34   We could just make this a clip show.

00:07:36   Just like, you know, just all the wonderful clips from times past.

00:07:39   It is the holiday season.

00:07:42   Next up, let's talk about file systems.

00:07:45   Alright.

00:07:48   That's more work than doing a regular show though.

00:07:50   Yeah, it actually is.

00:07:51   Really, honestly.

00:07:52   I mean, if I could just sit here and bullsh*t with you guys for a couple hours, that's way

00:07:55   easier than actually going back and pulling clips.

00:08:01   I just, 19 Safari windows, oh my God.

00:08:05   19. - How many Chrome windows

00:08:06   do I have open?

00:08:07   - Oh, God. (laughing)

00:08:10   - Oh my God, I didn't even think about that.

00:08:11   Of course it's multiple browsers.

00:08:13   Of course. - Oh, it's so bad.

00:08:14   - 12 Chrome windows. - Oh my God.

00:08:15   - In addition to the 19 Safari.

00:08:17   - Yeah, I run Safari and Chrome all the time.

00:08:19   - Oh my God.

00:08:20   - Why?

00:08:22   Why on God's green earth do you need

00:08:24   more than 30 web browser windows open?

00:08:27   Why is that necessary?

00:08:29   How many fricking tabs are in all 30 of these web browsers?

00:08:32   - I can close them now.

00:08:33   I can close the thing in my web browser.

00:08:34   - Oh, woo!

00:08:35   I can close like four of them, woo!

00:08:37   - I can close the pages with the dates of,

00:08:39   the Superclock dates in it.

00:08:41   - What's the average number of tabs per window, you think?

00:08:44   - It's like, so you can still see the titles.

00:08:46   Like usually, you know.

00:08:47   - So like eight?

00:08:48   - No, that's too many.

00:08:49   One, two, three, four, like five or six.

00:08:51   Like for example, when I was looking up,

00:08:52   I wanted to look up the dates for Superclock.

00:08:54   I had one window dedicated to looking up the date

00:08:56   that Super Clock was released.

00:08:59   One window looking up the date

00:09:01   that System 7.5 was released.

00:09:04   And within those windows, I have the Google thing,

00:09:06   and then I have tabs for the Google search results

00:09:09   that I thought would be likely,

00:09:10   and then one of the tabs eventually led to the answer.

00:09:12   That window is done, off to the side.

00:09:14   Next window, search for the--

00:09:15   - Wait, stop!

00:09:16   Why is it off to the side, and why is it not closed?

00:09:18   - So I could refer to it when I just discussed this

00:09:20   and did the math in my head about what the dates were.

00:09:22   - Oh my God.

00:09:23   (upbeat music)

00:09:25   So let's do some follow-up as we always should.

00:09:28   And John, why don't you tell us about an LG 4K HDR monitor?

00:09:33   Fun.

00:09:34   Back when I was buying the new monitor for my new PlayStation,

00:09:39   I was lamenting the fact that it didn't seem to be any place--

00:09:44   you could buy a 4K monitor with HDR support.

00:09:48   You could buy 4K televisions with HDR, but not monitors,

00:09:51   not like reasonable-sized small things you'd put on a desk.

00:09:55   And LG just preannounced/announced that they're going to have a 4K 32-ish or something inch

00:10:03   HDR capable monitor.

00:10:04   I thought they'll be showing it CES or something.

00:10:08   So you know, you're welcome.

00:10:10   All I had to do was buy a monitor.

00:10:12   And then, you know, they announced it.

00:10:14   Hey, can you buy a new Mac Pro, John?

00:10:15   Oh, God.

00:10:16   No, I haven't pulled that trigger yet.

00:10:18   Although, I had a dream about the Mac Pro last night speaking of the Mac Pro.

00:10:22   Of course you did.

00:10:23   I wish I had, I should have written it down or told it to an ancient bird, uh, Merlin

00:10:28   style because I'm something that's fading from memory.

00:10:31   But if something like, so Apple had introduced a new Mac pro that looked from the front of

00:10:35   look kind of like the trashcan Mac pro.

00:10:37   Uh, the name of it didn't make any sense to me in the dream.

00:10:41   It didn't make any sense.

00:10:42   And I kept asking anybody, everybody who had listened in the dream, why is it called this?

00:10:45   And I believe the name was something like, it was like a browsing computer, like web

00:10:50   browsing.

00:10:51   Like, why are you calling it a browsing computer?

00:10:53   make any sense this is supposed to be the new mac pro pro the replacement macro what does that do

00:10:57   with web browsing that's what it was called and when you rotate it around the back of it instead

00:11:01   of it looking like the current one on the back of the the trash can cylinder was a section that was

00:11:06   just cut out flat and what it looked like you know what the flattened place looked like it was like

00:11:11   the back of an old pc you know with the the pci slots with the little covers on them you know the

00:11:15   little sort of unfinished steel that's what it looked like on the back just steel like a big flat

00:11:20   section that was steel and had like the graphics card with a little port picking out of it and then two PCI slots

00:11:25   But shouldn't make any sense because it's a cylinder in there. Anyway, that's what it looked like. It was gross

00:11:29   I wasn't happy with it and it was named after something having to do with browsing which didn't make any sense

00:11:33   See normally I cannot stand to hear about someone else's brain taking a dump in their dreams. Like I just I cannot stand

00:11:41   Dream recollections because they make no sense. I tried to make it concise like there was way more to it

00:11:46   But I had the highlights but but I will

00:11:48   You know for whatever reason I I will tolerate dream recollections about the Mac Pro because I'm just that desperate for anything about the Mac Pro

00:11:56   You wouldn't want this one

00:11:59   Just like I'm still having like flashbacks in the back of this thing like a back of a PC shoved into

00:12:04   The back of a trash can it was some and there was some crap was about like oh

00:12:07   I guess the old back with like the little you know the little light up

00:12:11   Things and everything and the the ports being on the little curve that was just too expensive

00:12:15   So they're just going with like the back of a PC XT case.

00:12:19   But you know that I would still buy it and you would still not buy it.

00:12:22   I don't know.

00:12:23   Who knows what I'll do in the future.

00:12:26   All I know is if Apple releases something that they call a Mac Pro, even if it is only

00:12:32   slightly what Jon is interested in, Jon, if you don't buy one, I'm going to buy a friggin'

00:12:37   one for you.

00:12:38   So this way I don't have to continue to hear you lament about how you have a Mac Pro that's

00:12:42   older than my child, by quite a long stretch, I should add.

00:12:47   Your Mac Pro is like four times older than my child.

00:12:49   - It's older than both of our children combined.

00:12:51   - That's true.

00:12:52   (laughing)

00:12:53   Good grief.

00:12:54   All right, let's move on before I have to go find a bottle of vodka and start drinking.

00:12:58   I wasn't planning on this being a holiday spectacular.

00:13:00   The headphone port/jack audio source bugs.

00:13:05   I think it was Marco that talked about this an episode or two ago.

00:13:09   And the way it was pitched, given the information we had at our disposal at the time, was that

00:13:14   it was perhaps something with the lightning headphones where, oh no, I'm sorry, it was

00:13:17   Jon that brought this up, wasn't it?

00:13:20   Regardless, when you plug in lightning headphones, sometimes the audio doesn't go to the headphones.

00:13:24   When you unplug them, sometimes weird things happen.

00:13:27   And I guess we've gotten word that this may be an iOS 10 thing and not necessarily a lightning

00:13:32   headphones thing.

00:13:33   So do either of you want to build on that?

00:13:34   Well, that was the feedback that started coming in because my report was like, "Look, I got

00:13:38   this new iPhone 7 and this new thing is happening to me and I'm gonna blame it on the new headphone

00:13:42   thing because it never happened with my old headphones. And the first set of reports I

00:13:46   got were people saying "hey I've got an older iPhone that has a plain old headphone jack

00:13:50   and it's happening to me too so I guess it must be iOS 10 related and not hardware related."

00:13:54   And then eventually more reports started coming and saying "nope, happens on iOS 9 too so

00:13:59   I'm gonna say that I was just lucky up until this point that I had never run into this

00:14:04   bug and I just happened to see it coinciding with my lightning headphones because so many

00:14:08   people have said they've seen this on iOS 9 and with plain old headphones so oh well.

00:14:13   Alright fair enough. So we also just spoke about my Safari back and forward swipe issue

00:14:22   and brief recap. Occasionally, and this used to happen constantly years ago, I would use

00:14:28   on my Magic Mouse or perhaps on the trackpad on my laptops, I would do on the Magic Mouse

00:14:34   one finger swipe on the on the laptop. So it's a two finger swipe, and I would attempt to go, say,

00:14:40   back or forward a page, and the page would start to animate, say, back, so from left to right,

00:14:47   and then it would get stuck, and Safari would be effectively locked. And I thought that I was just

00:14:52   a unicorn in the bad way, and that I was one of the few people this happened to. I got a lot of

00:14:57   people—I can't put a number on it—but more than I expected, people tweeting at me saying, "Oh my

00:15:03   my god, I thought I was the only one. It turns out there's more of us than just me. A lot

00:15:09   of people have said that they had this problem. And we did get a handful of people that said,

00:15:14   and I haven't had a chance to try this myself, that when Safari freezes when swiping back,

00:15:19   you need to restore the page to the original position by swiping the other direction and

00:15:24   then Safari will continue working. You don't have to like quit Safari or reboot or whatever

00:15:27   the case may be. I, again, haven't corroborated that myself, but I saw that mentioned a couple

00:15:33   of different times. So it's worth trying if you're one of those sad unicorns like I am.

00:15:40   Moving on. Andrew Buckey writes in to say, "I'm a controls engineer working primarily

00:15:44   in automotive powertrain and I am based in the Detroit area. Just for your info, the

00:15:48   machine in the video that we mentioned last week is usually referred to as a mill turn

00:15:52   as it can do milling, straight cuts and drilling done by a mill, and turning, which is done

00:15:57   by a lathe." And the important piece here is that we were talking about how this is

00:16:01   a very fancy crankshaft and how wild that is. He said, "Cranks are not usually produced

00:16:06   like this. That was either a prototype part or a crank for a race car engine or "hypercar."

00:16:12   Usually the crank is cast in the rough shape of the crank and only a few millimeters of

00:16:15   material needs to be removed. Some surfaces are not even touched by the cutter. In most

00:16:19   every case, except low-volume parts, the machining process is progressive, with the part passing

00:16:24   through around 10 different mill-turn lathes, a balancer, a polisher, and a high-pressure

00:16:28   which is 5,000 psi water for deburring and cleaning before a finished part pops out.

00:16:33   So this is not a normal procedure, but man was it cool to watch.

00:16:37   Yeah, that makes sense because you're saying like,

00:16:39   "If this is what it takes to make every crankshaft, this seems excessive.

00:16:44   It seems like not a mass producing, and not a process by which you'd make a lot of anything,

00:16:49   because it just looks so... I mean, you know, you're only making one of those things at a time,

00:16:53   And the machine is the size of a truck and so it just doesn't work out as a mass production type of thing

00:16:58   Jake Rob also added something that and he says I don't know of a single production car with a billet crank

00:17:04   That's you know, these are these are a machine from a steel billet

00:17:06   So you call it billet crank Ferrari McLaren Kona stag all use forged to billet is for custom race engines

00:17:12   So it's not even even hyper cars don't use it

00:17:15   It's like only if you are making an engine for an actual

00:17:18   Custom racing car like for f1 or something about you're gonna do this if you're making a hyper car to sell the consumers

00:17:22   Even that doesn't give you enough money to occupy a gigantic truck size

00:17:27   computer-controlled milling machine for god knows how long it takes to make one of those things indeed

00:17:32   we also had a

00:17:35   conversation via email with an anonymous Amazon employee

00:17:39   Who has tried Amazon go and this email chain? I wish I could publish it because it was

00:17:45   Fascinating and I'm not being silly. I'm being genuine

00:17:49   I thought it was really, really interesting.

00:17:51   And so this particular individual, they said that they were on the queue to get in the

00:17:57   beta but weren't there yet.

00:17:58   And then just like the next day, they said, "Oh my goodness, I'm in the beta."

00:18:01   And then the following day, they said, "Okay, I've been and here's the situation."

00:18:05   And so to quote them, "I just got back from my first visit.

00:18:08   No RFID, no slanted shelves to push product up front, no clear weight pads on the shelves,

00:18:12   though all shelves are set up to be connected to a network."

00:18:15   So it's possible the entire shelf is being weighed and not a single aisle.

00:18:21   They got their receipt about five minutes after they left, so no door clustering.

00:18:26   It had everything I grabbed, including the Starbucks I pulled from the back of the stack

00:18:30   — I thought of you, John," said our anonymous writer.

00:18:33   "The entire ceiling is an array of wireless sensors and cameras.

00:18:36   I think they may be taking full radar of the store to track people and product."

00:18:39   How freaking cool is that?

00:18:40   I would love to see this in person.

00:18:42   Waiting five minutes for your receipt is like, do they just have, are the servers just slow

00:18:48   or is it always going to be five minutes?

00:18:50   Yeah, that does stop people from clustering, but it also stops you if you got accidentally

00:18:55   charged for 99 bottles of something you bought one bottle of.

00:18:59   Finding that out five minutes later, you could be driving away and now you have to circle

00:19:02   back, so that's kind of crappy.

00:19:03   Well no, because maybe this was a private email just to me because I exchanged a couple

00:19:08   with this individual.

00:19:10   But they said that if you look at the special app that you have to put on your phone in

00:19:15   order to use Amazon Go, once you get your receipt, you can just do a delete swipe, you

00:19:19   know, so that's a right to left swipe, and it will immediately remove that charge or

00:19:24   refund you that item or whatever the case may be.

00:19:26   I'm assuming since it's all Amazon employees right now, it's kind of honor system, I guess,

00:19:30   but…

00:19:31   Yeah, or just come leave the store and then just delete swipe everything you just bought.

00:19:34   This is a great system.

00:19:35   Right.

00:19:36   But I mean, according to this individual, it was very accurate and there was no obvious

00:19:42   witchcraft about it other than the sealing array of sensors.

00:19:47   So very cool stuff.

00:19:49   I'm really curious to see if this goes anywhere, but very neat.

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00:21:44   Was it yesterday as we record? We're recording on Wednesday the 14th. I think it was yesterday

00:21:48   or maybe this morning, sometime. It's been a blur for me at work lately. Apple finally

00:21:52   allowed us to give them $180 of our money and order AirPods right at the end of the

00:22:00   year by an hour after it went on sale. The date had slipped to after Christmas and within

00:22:06   just a couple hours after that. The date had slipped to well after Christmas and well into

00:22:11   the new year. I haven't looked lately at what the date is. I would just like to say a personal

00:22:17   thank you to Apple that they had decided to do this based on the one true time zone, which

00:22:24   is Eastern Time. And that makes me extremely happy because those jerks make us stay up

00:22:29   till three in the morning or wake up at three in the morning to order our darn iPhones.

00:22:34   And it was lovely, well, it would have been lovely had I ordered some, to be able to just

00:22:38   casually say, "Yes, I'd like one of these, please. I've been awake for an hour or two,

00:22:42   and I am prepared to make this kind of decision.

00:22:45   Meanwhile, I should add, a certain little someone

00:22:48   whose name might rhyme with smell

00:22:51   is sending me a picture of him listening to our show

00:22:54   in AirPods, excuse me, AirPods right now, that big jerk.

00:22:57   So hi, Mason Smell.

00:23:00   It's good to see that you're listening

00:23:02   on your fancy pets at AirPods.

00:23:03   - You can take solace in the fact that his right ear hurts.

00:23:05   (laughing)

00:23:07   - Did either of you guys order a pair?

00:23:09   Marco, I know you did, so I guess I shouldn't ask you.

00:23:11   John, did you order a pair?

00:23:13   - I did, I was excited to.

00:23:14   - Really?

00:23:15   - I also, I'm glad they did it in the right time zone

00:23:17   because I was awake and near a computer at the time.

00:23:20   Everyone said, "AirPods are available."

00:23:23   And so people said, "AirPods are available."

00:23:24   And I went click, click, click, click, click, order.

00:23:26   And mine are supposed to be delivered on the 21st.

00:23:29   - Yep, same deal, same as me.

00:23:31   I'm looking forward to how much they're gonna hurt my ears.

00:23:33   But I really hope they don't.

00:23:35   No, honestly, all of Apple's earbuds

00:23:38   and all earbuds have always hurt my ears enough

00:23:41   that I really can't ever use them.

00:23:43   I'm hoping these will be different

00:23:45   because the immense convenience of them is, you know,

00:23:50   I don't care how crappy they sound,

00:23:54   if they are comfortable at all,

00:23:56   I want to wear them on a regular basis

00:23:57   to listen to podcasts while on the go.

00:23:59   That will be awesome and it'll be extra awesome

00:24:02   to just like, you know, their case is so small

00:24:04   that you can bring them like in a,

00:24:05   you know, like all earbuds people have always known forever,

00:24:08   you can bring them like in a pocket or a bag

00:24:10   that would otherwise be too small

00:24:12   for most other kinds of headphones.

00:24:14   So you can kind of always have them with you,

00:24:16   and that's something that I have wished for

00:24:19   since I started carrying portable music devices, basically.

00:24:22   To just always have it with you

00:24:24   so that if you find yourself in a situation

00:24:25   where you need it, or where you'd like to listen

00:24:27   to something, you can just take your headphones

00:24:28   out of your pocket and listen.

00:24:30   And I've never had headphones that small before

00:24:32   'cause they don't fit my ears,

00:24:33   but I'm gonna really try to make these work

00:24:35   'cause I really want that convenience

00:24:37   for everyday walking around.

00:24:39   - Why don't you try whittling them down or something?

00:24:41   You have like a carving knife, you could.

00:24:42   (laughing)

00:24:43   He carved it himself from a bigger ear pod.

00:24:45   - The other thing too, like you know,

00:24:46   as I have used my iPhone 7 more

00:24:51   without its real headphone jack,

00:24:53   basically the more I live with the iPhone 7,

00:24:56   the less I ever want to use wired headphones with it again.

00:25:00   It's not that you can't do it,

00:25:01   you know, we know we can do it with the $9 dongle,

00:25:05   but it is such a clunky experience

00:25:07   and such a limited experience,

00:25:08   like if you wanna charge your phone on a plane,

00:25:10   I really do not intend to ever buy another pair

00:25:14   of wired headphones that isn't intended

00:25:16   for my desk ever again.

00:25:17   - So how amazing would it be?

00:25:21   Like this is Casey's fantasy tonight is,

00:25:24   Marco gets a set of AirPods, puts them in his ears

00:25:27   and realizes, hmm, you know these don't hurt my ears,

00:25:31   maybe this earbud thing ain't so bad.

00:25:34   And in typical Marco style, fast forward two months,

00:25:37   You know what, Casey, have you ever heard of getting your ears poured and getting like

00:25:41   in-ear monitors?

00:25:42   These things are amazing!

00:25:43   But that's not the same thing.

00:25:45   Ear pods are not the same as the little, you know, setty eel going into your ear canal.

00:25:51   These are outside, you know.

00:25:53   I think there's a long distance to go from "Can Margo's weird-shaped ears tolerate

00:25:59   plain old earbuds," which is what I would call these things, to "Can I get some crap

00:26:04   shoved right up in my ear?"

00:26:05   That's a whole different thing.

00:26:06   Also, in your monitors, I respect them as a category.

00:26:10   I've never been able to wear them myself.

00:26:13   I've tried, I've tried a couple,

00:26:15   and I got the fancy Comply tips and all those things,

00:26:17   and yeah, none of them have really ever worked for me.

00:26:20   But they also are very different in the way they function.

00:26:23   I mean, first of all, there are very few,

00:26:25   if any, wireless ones, and as I just said,

00:26:28   right now, for my needs away from my desk,

00:26:31   I'm only interested in wireless from this point forward.

00:26:34   And the other problem is that they isolate

00:26:36   really, really well.

00:26:38   They really block out all outside sound.

00:26:41   And most of the time when I'm using my portable headphones,

00:26:43   that's actually not what I want.

00:26:44   If I'm like walking around my town,

00:26:47   walking my dog or walking from the city

00:26:50   or if I'm walking through an airport alone,

00:26:52   I will use these headphones in all those times

00:26:54   where I really don't want that much isolation

00:26:57   from the outside world.

00:26:59   So in-ear monitors are great for lots of people

00:27:03   and use cases that I don't have.

00:27:07   - No, that's fair.

00:27:08   In case listeners, you weren't aware,

00:27:10   I've been beatin' Marco up for probably a year or two now

00:27:13   that my dad has a set of custom in-ear monitors

00:27:17   that he had had done a couple of years back

00:27:20   where you go to some sort of special ear doctor,

00:27:22   I'm sure there's a term for it.

00:27:24   - Audiologist.

00:27:25   - Oh yeah, or an audiologist, or whatever the case may be,

00:27:27   and you get a mold made of your ear canal

00:27:29   and then you send that mold to a company

00:27:31   will make a set of earphones, I guess they would be called, that is molded for your ears

00:27:37   specifically. And I keep saying to Marco, "Oh my God, imagine how amazing it would be

00:27:40   to have a speaker or a series of speakers millimeters away from your eardrums or whatever

00:27:46   the receptacle is that you need to listen to things." And every time Marco said, "Yes,

00:27:52   but anything that goes in my ears is evil and doesn't work." And so that is the source

00:27:55   of my fantasy is what if this was the way to get Marco to try in-ear monitors and realize

00:28:01   that this headphone business is just a bunch of waste, it's a total waste of time. We'll

00:28:04   see. Time will tell, listeners, time will tell. Anyway, in any case, I am actually hopeful

00:28:09   that I will at some point receive a set of AirPods. I didn't buy them only because I

00:28:16   don't have an urgent need for them. I mean, the holidays are coming up, but I don't expect

00:28:21   to receive them for the holidays. But my birthday is—

00:28:23   Yeah, I was going to say, did you expect—did you not order them yourself, or did you casually

00:28:28   send the URL to Aaron or something?

00:28:29   No, no, no. I thought about it, but I didn't. I didn't.

00:28:32   Not a good plan for something like that.

00:28:34   Yeah, probably not. Plus, Erin has been going on and on about how this is going to be a

00:28:38   great Christmas in Hanukkah for me, and I got to tell you the truth. I did not do as

00:28:42   well for her this year, so I'm already feeling pretty guilty. But anyway…

00:28:45   Way to set expectations.

00:28:46   Yeah, right? So, in any case, I figure my birthday's in March, so maybe I'll get

00:28:52   a set pair, whatever, for my birthday. But I definitely want to try them. I am super

00:28:57   intrigued by them. I think they look really, really awesome. And I think it's a very appley

00:29:02   way. Like this to me is the apple that the three of us love. And I hope this doesn't

00:29:07   take a negative turn, but this is Apple taking a thing that was annoying, but we all, well,

00:29:11   most of us lived with. Like the traditional Bluetooth, I am a proponent and defender of

00:29:16   it, but I cannot sit here and say it's perfect and it's flawless. It's sufficient. And for

00:29:21   me the trade-offs are worth it. But this W1 chip and all the fancy Bluetooth stuff that

00:29:26   they're doing. This just looks awesome and is solving a problem in the most aptly best

00:29:30   possible way. And I'm really looking forward to at least trying AirPods at some point,

00:29:35   if not getting my own set. And I agree with you, Marco, that as much as I'm giving you

00:29:39   a hard time, in-ear monitors are not the right answer for like walking around or anything

00:29:43   like that. I had sent to me a set of bone-conducting headphones. I will put a link in the show

00:29:50   notes for the life of me. I can't remember the name of them and I apologize because it's

00:29:56   right on the tip of my tongue. But anyway, we'll put a link in the show notes.

00:29:58   I know what you're talking about. I've actually been meaning to try those myself,

00:30:02   but haven't quite gotten to it yet. Yeah, well, if you remind me, we're going

00:30:06   to see each other in a few weeks, and I'll bring them. They are not the greatest for

00:30:12   music. It's a bit tinny, which makes sense, because if you're not familiar with bone-conducting

00:30:15   headphones, the way it works is there's nothing over your ear itself. They go kind of around

00:30:19   your ears and press, I guess it's your cheekbones that are the bones that kind of stick out

00:30:25   where your cheeks are. Well anyways, so they vibrate your cheekbones, which kind of somehow

00:30:30   vibrates the inner ear. That sounds really scary and sketchy, but actually it works really

00:30:35   well. And my word, for podcasting, they are, for listening to podcasts I should say, they

00:30:41   are phenomenal. And what's great about it is you can have them in and still be completely

00:30:47   and totally aware of what's going on around you. The Aftershokz Trex Titanium is the name

00:30:54   of the headphones. I'll put a link in the show notes. If all you're doing is listening

00:30:59   to podcasts, I cannot recommend these enough. And I think that the AirPods are going to

00:31:03   fill a similar gap, except they'll probably be far better for music. Now they'll probably

00:31:09   have a little more isolation, which is both good and bad, but they'll probably be far

00:31:12   better for music. So I'm really anxious to try AirPods. Hopefully you guys will bring

00:31:17   a set and I'll bring some disinfecting wipes or something so after I try them I can disinfect

00:31:23   them but I would love to try them when we see each other in a few weeks. I am super

00:31:27   amped to see how these are and see what the real world says once they're out in the

00:31:31   wild.

00:31:32   - The one concern I have, and I'm remembering now why I didn't rush to order the bone conduction

00:31:36   ones, the main issue I have with so many Bluetooth headphones is a lack of easy or good or any

00:31:46   controls for volume, seek back, seek forward, play/pause. Regularly with the wired ones

00:31:53   you have the clicker and the clicker is its own set of challenges of the various multi-click

00:31:58   gestures doing those reliably is always a little bit tricky and everything. But the

00:32:02   reason I've stuck with my ugly Sennheiser PX210BT for so long is because it has these

00:32:09   big plastic buttons on the right ear cup. And right now it's getting cold outside so

00:32:14   on a lot of my walks now I'm wearing gloves and I can feel and accurately push these giant

00:32:20   plastic buttons through gloves even.

00:32:23   And it's one click for back, one click for forward,

00:32:26   click up and down for volume, middle for pause.

00:32:29   It's so convenient.

00:32:31   And almost every good Bluetooth headphone

00:32:34   does not have good controls.

00:32:36   Almost all the other ones, the ones that are on ear

00:32:39   or over ear, they get all fancy with touch gestures.

00:32:43   And those are all, believe me, I've tried so many,

00:32:45   they are all awful.

00:32:47   They're just the worst.

00:32:49   It's like, oh, make a little swirl motion with your hand

00:32:51   to turn the volume up.

00:32:52   Yeah, that works really precisely.

00:32:54   Like, it's just, oh my God, and there's delay,

00:32:57   and you gotta tap again, and oh, they're so unreliable,

00:33:00   they're so annoying.

00:33:01   That's always a challenge with Bluetooth headphones.

00:33:03   And you gotta figure, it's kind of a physical design problem.

00:33:06   Like, where do you put the controls on some of these?

00:33:09   And the AirPods, from what we know so far,

00:33:13   they only have one control gesture,

00:33:15   which is, it's either a tap or a double tap, I forget.

00:33:17   Do you remember which one?

00:33:18   But anyway, whatever it is, it's by default,

00:33:21   it toggles Siri and you can apparently change it

00:33:24   in the preferences to instead be a play/pause button.

00:33:28   But that's it.

00:33:30   And so I do worry about that.

00:33:32   And I worry about that as is with all Bluetooth headphones

00:33:35   'cause most of them have either bad to no controls.

00:33:38   So that I think is going to be frustrating

00:33:41   to only have play/pause control or you can ask Siri

00:33:45   to play and pause your stuff,

00:33:47   but I don't think that would be good for me

00:33:50   to remain positive about Apple stuff.

00:33:52   So I think I'm not going to configure mine that way.

00:33:55   But I assume, I guess the design assumption here

00:34:00   is that maybe you'll wanna control things

00:34:03   either all through Siri, which is probably not great,

00:34:06   or through the Apple Watch, or through your phone

00:34:09   by taking it out of your pocket and everything.

00:34:10   And those are all okay answers.

00:34:12   None of them are as good as having actual physical controls

00:34:15   that are near or on the headphones,

00:34:17   but we'll see how that works in practice.

00:34:19   I think the AirPods overall will be so incredibly convenient

00:34:24   that we'll probably be willing to overlook the annoyance

00:34:27   of the lack of physical controls on them,

00:34:30   even though that will be a big annoyance,

00:34:32   but I think the convenience will just be so great

00:34:33   that we'll overlook that.

00:34:36   - There's another wireless dongle to be the controller.

00:34:40   (laughing)

00:34:40   Right, so you got the ear,

00:34:41   because I mean, as far as I'm concerned, it's not--

00:34:43   - You mean like an Apple Watch?

00:34:44   I would probably take that.

00:34:46   In fact, I did wear my Apple Watch recently just to--

00:34:48   Congratulations.

00:34:49   --give it a clap.

00:34:50   But I-- boy, watches still annoy me.

00:34:54   But I just don't want the wire connecting,

00:34:56   because that gets caught on things and it's annoying.

00:34:59   And also, reaching into my pocket

00:35:02   to try to find the volume on my phone,

00:35:04   I can probably pull that off.

00:35:05   But I don't think there's any hardware

00:35:07   button I can hit on my phone that will advance or go back.

00:35:11   Funny thing, I actually--

00:35:12   I prototyped a while ago with Overcast.

00:35:15   I used the accelerometer on the phone during playback

00:35:17   to try to detect if you would just tap the phone

00:35:20   in your pocket, like if you just hit the back of it

00:35:22   with your finger and try to interpret tap gestures

00:35:25   the same way you do it on a remote clicker.

00:35:27   And I almost got it working.

00:35:28   You can actually do it and it works okay,

00:35:32   but it doesn't work reliably enough.

00:35:33   Like I get to be good for maybe like 2/3 of the time,

00:35:37   but that's nowhere close to how reliable it has to be

00:35:40   to make it actually usable without one or three,

00:35:43   or throw your phone out the window.

00:35:44   But I actually, I wanted to solve this exact problem.

00:35:47   I wanted a remote control in my pocket

00:35:49   and just go tap, tap, or whatever it is,

00:35:52   just tapping the back of your phone in your pocket

00:35:54   as you're walking.

00:35:55   - You don't wanna tap something.

00:35:56   I want buttons.

00:35:57   I want buttons that I can feel.

00:35:58   Buttons you can feel with gloves on even.

00:36:00   - But you can tap it with gloves on too, doesn't matter.

00:36:02   - Tapping is not the way to plus it,

00:36:05   but your app would have to be front most, right?

00:36:07   - No, if it's playing audio, it can be continuous.

00:36:10   - All right, well, anyway, I don't wanna tap anything.

00:36:13   I don't wanna buy anything bought, sold,

00:36:15   I don't wanna manufacture anything sold or processed.

00:36:18   That's the second one you guys missed today.

00:36:20   The second. - No, well,

00:36:22   I get that that is a reference.

00:36:24   I forget what it's a reference from.

00:36:26   It's always on Back to Work.

00:36:27   That's all I know.

00:36:28   - It's a movie you haven't seen.

00:36:29   That's what it's a reference to.

00:36:30   Like, so many things in life.

00:36:31   - Well, that's every movie, you're right.

00:36:33   - Real time follow-up from Mason Smell.

00:36:36   It is double tap, and you can choose

00:36:39   to either have that engage Siri, play pause,

00:36:42   or do nothing at all.

00:36:44   Also, Mason Smell would like to tell John Syracuse

00:36:47   that it was say anything,

00:36:48   say anything that you were referencing.

00:36:49   - I know Jason knows, or you can have it do nothing at all.

00:36:51   That's a great option.

00:36:52   - Excuse me, excuse me, it's Mason

00:36:54   that we're speaking with, thank you very much.

00:36:56   - I'm impressed that you're keeping this straight.

00:36:58   - I'm trying real hard, you have no idea.

00:37:00   (laughing)

00:37:01   In any case, so yeah, so in summary,

00:37:03   we're all amped for our new headphones,

00:37:05   ear pods, ear pods, whatever we're calling them,

00:37:07   headphones, things.

00:37:08   You can't keep that straight.

00:37:09   - Right, before I move on from AirPods,

00:37:11   if Apple sold AppleCare+ for AirPods for like $30 to $50,

00:37:16   would you buy it?

00:37:19   - Would it cover, well--

00:37:21   - It would cover like if you lose one of them

00:37:22   or if it falls and you step on it or whatever,

00:37:24   like instead of having to buy a whole,

00:37:26   because I'm assuming your only option now,

00:37:27   say one of them falls out of your ears

00:37:29   or it gets knocked down and you step on it and it breaks.

00:37:31   Is your only option $160 out of pocket

00:37:33   to buy an entire new set?

00:37:34   You can't just buy one, right?

00:37:35   So the AppleCare thing would be like 30 to 50 bucks

00:37:38   where you get, you know, if you damage them

00:37:40   or lose them anyway, you get a replacement

00:37:42   for another 50 or some crap like that.

00:37:44   Would you buy that?

00:37:45   - I don't think I would, but I'm cheap as hell, so.

00:37:48   - And everyone trying to gauge is like,

00:37:49   do you predict that you're gonna have problems

00:37:51   either losing or breaking these things?

00:37:52   - I don't think so.

00:37:54   - Marco?

00:37:55   - My policy with buying extended warranties

00:37:57   most of the time is to not buy them.

00:38:01   And then if in my life I end up having to pay out of pocket

00:38:04   so many repairs that it would have been more expensive than buying all these things up

00:38:09   to that point, then I will start buying the extended warranties from that point forward.

00:38:14   Your policy is close the barn door after the horse is gone.

00:38:17   No, but my policy is basically like, let me take the risk and see if in my life I need

00:38:24   to pay this kind of insurance premium or not.

00:38:26   And so far in my life, in my entire adult life of owning expensive gadgets, I have almost

00:38:33   never bought the extended warranty and have also almost never needed one. So I'm coming

00:38:38   out way ahead, basically.

00:38:40   Have you thought about insuring your watches for either theft or damage? I'm genuinely

00:38:45   asking. I'm not trying to be snarky.

00:38:46   No, I have. I mean, it's smart. You know, when you have like homeowners insurance, that's

00:38:50   a different thing. And so, yeah, we have our jewelry items covered under the homeowners

00:38:58   insurance, you know, specifically like under like a rider for them. But that's very different

00:39:02   and way cheaper than $350 for every laptop I buy.

00:39:06   - Sure, sure.

00:39:07   - Is it $350 for laptops?

00:39:09   Is that how much it is?

00:39:10   - I think for the 15 inch, I think it's 300 or 350.

00:39:12   - Glad I don't buy laptops.

00:39:14   - Well, and so with Apple,

00:39:16   so the price of the warranty does not take into account

00:39:20   the price of the options when you buy it.

00:39:22   So the warranty for the base model Mac Pro, that's $3,000,

00:39:27   is the exact same price as if you spec it all up

00:39:30   and make it like $9,000.

00:39:32   So if I'm buying, so for my iMac,

00:39:35   I actually did buy the extended warranty

00:39:37   because my iMac was something like a $4,400 configuration.

00:39:41   It's like as much as you could put into an iMac

00:39:43   when I bought it two years ago.

00:39:45   And it was priced at something like 200 bucks

00:39:49   for the extended warranty.

00:39:50   So I did buy it for that, figuring like,

00:39:53   this is a large thing with everything inside

00:39:55   and this is a really a very small percentage of the cost

00:39:58   based on the cost of the whole item.

00:40:02   And so I figured like, you know, the risk reward ratio there was different.

00:40:07   But on almost everything else I don't get it because on almost everything else it doesn't

00:40:11   make any sense.

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00:41:13   - Marco had an experience today, or recently anyway.

00:41:21   Would you like to tell us about that?

00:41:22   - Oh, I went to a Microsoft store.

00:41:25   - I'm so sorry, I mean, really, how was it?

00:41:27   - So yeah, I was in the mall recently,

00:41:29   I had some time to kill while my wife and kid

00:41:31   went and did something else,

00:41:32   so I went to the Microsoft store,

00:41:35   and amazingly, there was nobody there.

00:41:38   - Really?

00:41:39   - It's usually so crowded.

00:41:40   - So I got to play with the big Surface Studio

00:41:42   they had on display.

00:41:43   - So, snark aside, I'm genuinely interested to hear

00:41:47   how you thought of this, because at a glance,

00:41:49   this thing does look pretty damn cool,

00:41:50   and we talked about this a few episodes ago.

00:41:53   I'm curious, so did you play with the tilt?

00:41:55   Did you play with the little dongly thing?

00:41:57   Tell us all about it.

00:41:58   So I did, I played with everything.

00:42:00   So first of all, the base is way too light.

00:42:03   Like, the base of it--

00:42:05   - Interesting.

00:42:05   - Like, they use laptop components.

00:42:07   Like, you know, people accuse the iMac

00:42:09   of being laptop components, but the iMac

00:42:10   is kind of a combination of desktop and laptop components.

00:42:13   Mostly desktop parts, really.

00:42:14   The Surface Studio is really laptop components.

00:42:18   And the base of it is very small and light.

00:42:21   It's a lot smaller than you'd think.

00:42:24   And kind of unnecessarily so.

00:42:27   Like one of the issues I had with it was like

00:42:29   while tilting it, it would kind of wobble sometimes

00:42:31   'cause it just like, the screen is so much heavier

00:42:34   than the base that it kind of, I don't know.

00:42:37   I don't know why they had to make the base so tight

00:42:39   and so tiny and take all the trade-offs

00:42:42   of lower power components to do that.

00:42:44   I think that was probably a mistake, but oh well.

00:42:46   - Well, I think part of their advertising pitch

00:42:48   is that it's supposed to be easy to move around.

00:42:51   Like it's not supposed to feel like it is rooted

00:42:53   in whatever place it is because as you can imagine,

00:42:55   having it set up when it's vertical like a screen,

00:42:57   it would be positioned differently

00:42:58   than when it's the other way.

00:43:00   So I think they actually have like a lazy Susan

00:43:02   on the bottom type of thing so it can rotate

00:43:04   and I think it's supposed to be light enough

00:43:05   that you don't feel like it is anchored to the desk

00:43:08   at the place where it's put.

00:43:09   - That's fair, okay.

00:43:10   And I mean, it does feel light.

00:43:12   Like you move it around freely

00:43:13   and it really does feel like,

00:43:15   it feels like a giant tablet.

00:43:17   It does not feel like a desktop computer.

00:43:19   So I got to play with the whatever they call their stylus

00:43:22   and whatever they call the big knob.

00:43:24   The Surface Style, and I'm not sure what the pen is called,

00:43:27   but Surface Style is the knob.

00:43:29   - Cool, so I got to play with the big knob.

00:43:33   Well, I got to feel the big knob, however--

00:43:35   - Not improving.

00:43:36   - None of the apps that I tried,

00:43:38   which was like something I already forgot what it was,

00:43:41   and then I spent a lot of time in Lightroom,

00:43:43   and Lightroom did not support the big knob,

00:43:45   so I did not get to use it for anything really.

00:43:49   So I put the big knob down,

00:43:50   and I just played with the stylus,

00:43:52   and the touch screen.

00:43:55   And this is the first time I've, I think, ever played

00:43:58   with a touch screen Windows PC, oh no, no,

00:44:00   I played with a Windows 8 one back in the day.

00:44:02   Anyway, so I have very little experience

00:44:05   with touch screen Windows PCs,

00:44:07   and I never use like a Modbook or anything,

00:44:09   so I've never tried it on a Mac OS either.

00:44:10   But I do have a lot of experience in Lightroom,

00:44:14   and so I figured, let me try Lightroom,

00:44:16   it's a program I already know how to use,

00:44:17   let me see how it works on this thing.

00:44:19   I gotta say, I really liked it.

00:44:22   And there are things that I didn't like about it,

00:44:24   but overall, it was surprisingly good.

00:44:28   Like, even using touch control in a desktop OS,

00:44:33   which everyone says is a terrible thing,

00:44:35   honestly, I suggest you try it,

00:44:38   because again, I'm not entirely sure

00:44:41   I'd want to do it full-time,

00:44:43   but to have the option, it was kind of cool

00:44:46   to be able to control Lightroom,

00:44:49   this program I already know how to use pretty well,

00:44:51   and people do things like,

00:44:53   when you're using a touch screen,

00:44:55   you effectively have multiple

00:44:56   pointing devices simultaneously.

00:44:58   So when you're sitting here on a desktop using a mouse,

00:45:01   you're controlling one mouse cursor.

00:45:03   And even if you get all fancy like I do

00:45:04   and you have a trackpad on the left and a mouse on the right,

00:45:06   you have two pointing devices,

00:45:07   you're still only controlling one mouse pointer

00:45:10   and there's only one thing at a time

00:45:11   that can have that mouse pointer.

00:45:13   You can only point to one thing at a time,

00:45:14   you can only click on one thing at a time.

00:45:16   When you have a touch screen,

00:45:17   even in this desktop environment,

00:45:19   you effectively have multiple input points

00:45:21   at any given time, you can use your different fingers

00:45:23   and different hands.

00:45:24   So it actually was really easy to work in Lightroom

00:45:29   very quickly on this thing.

00:45:31   And I can see, it would have been a lot better

00:45:35   if it was designed for it, and I guess this is the case

00:45:38   for just big iPads, 'cause they are designed for it

00:45:40   right from the start, but it was pretty cool.

00:45:44   And of course, I leaned the whole thing down,

00:45:46   like I did the almost flat on the desk screen arrangement

00:45:49   to do most of this, it wasn't up.

00:45:51   If it's up, if it's straight up vertical,

00:45:53   then touching it makes no sense, I agree with that.

00:45:55   But when it's kind of like drafting table angle,

00:45:58   it actually worked surprisingly well.

00:46:01   And I still really didn't like any part of Windows at all.

00:46:06   And I wasn't confused by it really,

00:46:09   like you know, I've used Windows long enough,

00:46:10   I have a rough idea of the Windows vocabulary

00:46:13   of how to do things, because most of it's still the same

00:46:16   from how it was back when I was a Windows expert.

00:46:19   So the core of it is still the same.

00:46:22   And so most of Windows I still don't like.

00:46:25   However, if you were buying a computer

00:46:29   whose main purpose was to be like a creative workstation

00:46:32   to run a particular app like Lightroom or Photoshop

00:46:35   or like a video editor, if that app runs on Windows

00:46:40   without any kind of massive downsides,

00:46:42   this could be a really compelling option.

00:46:44   So like really, and so because Microsoft is positioning

00:46:48   it that way, they're positioning this as like a creative

00:46:51   thing you put in a studio that where you're basically

00:46:53   buying a workstation for the purpose of running

00:46:56   like one or two creative apps as your main thing,

00:46:59   as your main role for that computer.

00:47:02   This is actually pretty compelling.

00:47:04   I can really see like, basically if what you're doing

00:47:08   doesn't really, if it doesn't really matter that it's

00:47:11   running on Windows, like if it's one of the Adobe apps,

00:47:14   It's kinda cool.

00:47:16   And I did have issues with, like,

00:47:19   you know, like Lightroom has a lot of very tiny

00:47:21   interface elements, like little tiny sliders and everything.

00:47:23   And they were a little hard to hit with the pen sometimes.

00:47:27   But it wouldn't take a lot of adjustment

00:47:29   if Adobe really wanted to put any effort into this

00:47:31   to make that really awesome.

00:47:33   Also Windows, like, I don't know what the deal is

00:47:36   with Windows high DPI mode.

00:47:37   I know it's a mess.

00:47:38   But basically, like, you know, with Apple,

00:47:41   you just 2Xed everything with Retina,

00:47:43   and everything kinda just worked,

00:47:45   and developers had to do a little bit of work,

00:47:47   but not much, and it was great.

00:47:48   With Windows, I guess they have their high DPI modes

00:47:51   where they can scale to any number of pixels,

00:47:54   and they kinda scale some interface elements,

00:47:56   but not all of them, and so I had like ridiculously

00:48:00   tiny little text and tiny little check boxes

00:48:03   in the middle of giant blown up interfaces.

00:48:05   It was very strange. - Yep.

00:48:06   - So obviously-- - Yep.

00:48:07   (laughing)

00:48:08   Yeah, I tried to run my VM that I was working

00:48:12   a few weeks ago. I tried to run that in high DPI mode and it was really, really bad. Like,

00:48:18   some things were tiny, like you said, some things were the size I expected them to be.

00:48:23   The fonts were just not built for high DPI. Like, it was just a really crummy experience

00:48:28   as compared to the Mac where I'm not trying to be funny, but everything really does just

00:48:32   work.

00:48:33   The Mac was going to be that the way you describe Windows as for a long time. I think I remember

00:48:38   WWDC 2007-ish where they were saying come 2008 resolution independence as they

00:48:43   called it then will be here so prepare your apps and then 2008 came and went

00:48:47   and they didn't they used to be a little slider in the resolution you go 1x 1.5x

00:48:51   2x 3x and you can just move that slider around and watch every interface in your

00:48:55   computer break essentially you got pixel cracks you got things that are not

00:48:59   scaling in the right size you got ugly crap it was so smart of them to just

00:49:03   spend an extra few years to figure out how to make like that they weren't gonna

00:49:07   to ship it in a state where somebody could configure their Mac to look this gross. And

00:49:11   so eventually the solution they came up with, as we all know, is it's too extra, it's

00:49:16   nothing. And even that was hard enough to get everyone on board with. But at least when

00:49:20   that works, it works right and predictably.

00:49:23   Yeah, that Apple definitely bet on the right side of history on that one. And because Windows

00:49:29   is very much suffering from this. But anyway, so yeah, there's issues with Windows for

00:49:34   for sure, and again, I wouldn't be interested at all

00:49:38   in this computer if I wanted it to be

00:49:41   like a general purpose computer or my main computer.

00:49:44   But again, if I were building a computer

00:49:45   whose sole purpose was to be like a photo editing

00:49:48   workstation, I would really give this serious consideration

00:49:51   because it really was surprisingly good.

00:49:53   And I went in there all thinking,

00:49:55   oh, let me take a bunch of mental notes

00:49:57   and how much everything sucks so I can be funny on the show.

00:50:00   But no, it actually is good.

00:50:04   I wouldn't say it was terrible if it wasn't,

00:50:07   and here I am saying it's not terrible.

00:50:09   It really, if you can tolerate Windows in general,

00:50:14   it's a really cool computer.

00:50:15   - So what was the pen latency like?

00:50:17   Did you do any drawing in any of the drawing?

00:50:19   I know a lot of that is app dependent,

00:50:20   as it is in the iPad, for example,

00:50:22   how Notes on the iPad is perfect,

00:50:24   and many drawing apps like Procreate or Paper,

00:50:29   a lot of those, depending on what brush you're using,

00:50:30   are laggy, but anyway, one of the complaints

00:50:32   that heard about the Surface Studio

00:50:34   is that the parallax was a little bit off,

00:50:36   like because I guess the distance between the glass

00:50:40   that you touch and the place where the pixels are

00:50:42   was enough to make it feel weird,

00:50:43   and also that some people said it feels laggy

00:50:46   in certain situations.

00:50:47   - The parallax glass gap thing is a real problem.

00:50:50   I didn't use it for any kind of drawing app.

00:50:53   I really only used it for like,

00:50:55   some app I launched for like two seconds

00:50:57   that I couldn't figure out,

00:50:58   and then I just went to Lightroom

00:50:59   'cause I knew how to use that.

00:51:01   but so I was mainly using the pen

00:51:02   to like drag around sliders and stuff.

00:51:04   So for that, basically using it as a precision mouse pointer,

00:51:08   it's great.

00:51:09   And in fact, I really enjoyed doing that

00:51:12   because like in the same hand that I had the pen in,

00:51:16   here I have all these fingers doing nothing

00:51:18   and so if I wanted to like, you know,

00:51:20   do like one of the pinch gestures

00:51:21   just with my other fingers, it mostly worked great.

00:51:24   And like palm recognition was great.

00:51:27   Distinguishing between pen and touch was great.

00:51:30   There was, I don't think in my, I don't know,

00:51:32   I probably used it for 10 minutes,

00:51:35   I don't think there was a single time

00:51:37   when it misinterpreted one of my inputs.

00:51:40   Like it seemed like it was really,

00:51:42   really quite good at that.

00:51:44   For latency's tough to judge,

00:51:46   because remember when the iPad Pro came out with the pencil,

00:51:49   latency varies a lot by the application.

00:51:52   You know, it really depends a lot

00:51:53   on what you're doing in the app.

00:51:54   So it was easy with the Apple Pencil to be like,

00:51:58   oh, you can measure it with notes,

00:51:59   'cause Apple did a lot of work to make notes really fast

00:52:01   and with the notes sketching thing.

00:52:03   You could also go and look at one of the fancier art apps.

00:52:05   Their brushes were way slower and way laggier.

00:52:08   On the same hardware at the same time,

00:52:10   just 'cause their app wasn't as optimized

00:52:12   or it was doing way more complex rendering.

00:52:14   And so I can't really judge the Surface Studio in that way.

00:52:18   All I can judge is how the pen was as a mouse pointer

00:52:21   to adjust sliders in Lightroom.

00:52:22   And it was great.

00:52:23   And it was also really nice to have like

00:52:25   the pen slider in my right hand,

00:52:26   you know, the pen doing the slider in my right hand

00:52:28   and then using my left hand to pinch and zoom

00:52:31   and pan around the photo that I was editing

00:52:32   as I was dragging the slider.

00:52:33   I mean, again, to have that kind of multiple input,

00:52:36   you know, multi-touch, having multiple pointing devices

00:52:39   is really compelling when it's done well.

00:52:42   And I have never felt that productive on an iPad

00:52:45   mostly because the kind of apps I use

00:52:49   for high-end creative needs aren't really on the iPad.

00:52:52   Yes, there's Lightroom on the iPad, but it's kinda crappy.

00:52:55   It's not really the same thing.

00:52:57   And also, the hardware is not quite up to speed

00:53:01   to manage giant photos and stuff like that.

00:53:03   So iPads don't get this kind of use from me

00:53:06   and from I think most people who are dealing

00:53:07   with this high-end creative use right now.

00:53:10   But in the future, if there is a huge iPad

00:53:14   that's even bigger than the 12.9,

00:53:17   now I finally get why you would want a giant iPad,

00:53:21   even bigger than the 12.9, why you'd want a 27-inch iPad,

00:53:24   I finally understand that now.

00:53:26   it would be a desktop and it would be fine.

00:53:28   Like, I totally get it.

00:53:30   So, overall, without drawing this out too much longer,

00:53:33   I really just, yeah, I just wanted to say,

00:53:35   like, I was blown away by how good it was.

00:53:38   And I'm not gonna go out and buy one,

00:53:40   'cause I don't really have a need in my life

00:53:42   for a single-purpose workstation computer

00:53:46   that's like a Lightroom station.

00:53:47   Like, I don't need that.

00:53:49   But if I needed that, I'd probably buy one of these.

00:53:52   - All my arguing over so many episodes and so many hours,

00:53:56   and the thing that convinced you is going to a Microsoft store

00:53:59   and using one and not even drawing on it.

00:54:00   I don't understand how you go into the Microsoft store--

00:54:03   I can't draw.

00:54:03   --to this giant thing, and you say,

00:54:05   you know what I want to do?

00:54:06   I want to use the pen as a mouse cursor in Lightroom,

00:54:10   an application that's not even optimized for touch.

00:54:12   But hey, whatever works for you.

00:54:14   Whatever works for you, I guess I just wasn't convincing.

00:54:16   I guess I should have pitched it.

00:54:17   Think of it this way, Marco.

00:54:18   Imagine if you're using Lightroom, a non-touch optimized

00:54:20   app, and used the pen as a mouse.

00:54:22   Now would you buy one?

00:54:23   Yeah, now I find that convincing.

00:54:25   - No, honestly, until I, it's very tactile,

00:54:28   until I actually did it and used it and tried,

00:54:32   and especially because I was using an app

00:54:34   that I already knew how to use and was already fast with,

00:54:37   I was able to really see how much

00:54:40   this kind of interaction can help,

00:54:42   because I wasn't just trying to figure out

00:54:43   a brand new app for the first time

00:54:45   where I'm stumbling around going all slow,

00:54:46   and oh, this is novel.

00:54:48   No, I was actually going through things

00:54:51   that I do in this app, things I already know how to do,

00:54:53   and workflows that I have, oh, I drag this,

00:54:56   then do this, then do this, so I could get an idea of,

00:54:59   like, is this actually more productive,

00:55:02   is this doable, what are the upsides, what are the downsides?

00:55:05   And honestly, I had a hard time finding downsides.

00:55:07   The only downside was Windows.

00:55:09   - So you're gonna make your audio editor application

00:55:12   for Windows now, for the Surface Studio.

00:55:14   'Cause imagine how awesome that would be,

00:55:16   as I've said many times, your audio editing application

00:55:18   on a big, giant touchscreen.

00:55:20   - I have actually thought about, like,

00:55:22   So I've done no work on the audio editor so far.

00:55:24   I have a bunch of concepts in my head, yeah,

00:55:26   but I've done no actual coding.

00:55:28   So the options are totally open of where

00:55:30   I would actually do this if I ever choose to do it.

00:55:32   And my main debate point in my head was like,

00:55:34   should I do this on the iPad or on the Mac?

00:55:37   And I've been leaning towards Mac,

00:55:39   but I gotta say the appeal of doing this kind of thing

00:55:43   with multi-touch is something.

00:55:46   And maybe the touch bar on the Mac would be enough,

00:55:48   I don't know.

00:55:50   But I do think it is worth, for all of us

00:55:54   in the Mac commentosphere who, I apologize,

00:55:58   who have written off the idea of touch screens

00:56:04   on the desktop, it's easy to just repeat

00:56:07   the company line or the party line of like,

00:56:11   no, that's a bad idea, you shouldn't,

00:56:13   we don't need that, the desktop needs to remain the desktop,

00:56:15   nobody needs a touch screen PC.

00:56:17   I think that is a bad assumption.

00:56:21   It is possible to do this well.

00:56:23   And Microsoft already almost has.

00:56:26   If the software ecosystem was better on Windows,

00:56:28   it would be incredible.

00:56:30   It's not, and the software ecosystem is the kind of thing

00:56:33   that doesn't turn on a dime,

00:56:35   that doesn't all of a sudden become perfect in six months

00:56:39   just because Microsoft releases one desktop

00:56:41   that very few people will probably buy.

00:56:43   But I don't think we can say with confidence

00:56:47   that Apple should never do something like the Surface Studio.

00:56:51   - Interesting.

00:56:52   - You can just say I'm right, this is all right.

00:56:53   You can just shortcut this.

00:56:54   (laughing)

00:56:56   - Hashtag John was right.

00:56:57   - John was right again, go ahead, it's fine.

00:56:59   - So how funny would it be if it ends up

00:57:03   that during the run of this show,

00:57:05   like Neutral had the arc of you deciding upon

00:57:08   purchasing and receiving an M5.

00:57:11   Is the arc of the Accidental Tech podcast

00:57:13   for me to finally abandon .NET in Windows

00:57:17   only to have you go crawling back to Windows

00:57:19   and then suddenly becoming a .NET developer?

00:57:22   'Cause that would be funny.

00:57:23   - I would say if Microsoft wants to send review units,

00:57:26   my nine-year-old daughter who loves to draw

00:57:28   would love to try out a Surface Studio.

00:57:30   - Yes, because I'm sure so many Microsoft employees

00:57:32   listen to this show.

00:57:34   - Yeah, a lot of nine-year-olds have $3,000

00:57:35   28-inch tablet computers.

00:57:37   That's what I heard all the kids have these days.

00:57:39   - And the other thing is if I were to buy,

00:57:41   if I wanted one for my stated idea

00:57:44   of having it be a Lightroom workstation,

00:57:46   I would want a more powerful computer for it.

00:57:48   Like I would much rather have that--

00:57:50   - You?

00:57:50   What's the surface studio pro?

00:57:52   - Right, like I would much rather have the monitor part

00:57:56   just be a monitor that I could plug into any PC

00:57:59   and then buy like a ridiculous Xeon workstation

00:58:02   with like 12 cores and have that be my crazy importer

00:58:06   and processor because Lightroom is very well parallelized

00:58:08   for a lot of its operations and would actually use

00:58:10   that power and really needs extra speed.

00:58:13   So that is, it's a little odd that they don't have

00:58:16   like a standalone option yet, but I would imagine

00:58:18   like if for some reason, I don't know if people buy

00:58:20   this thing, maybe they'll go that direction

00:58:22   and release it as a product.

00:58:23   But you know, the good thing about the Windows ecosystem

00:58:25   is that other people could basically do that

00:58:27   and it would probably be all right.

00:58:29   - So what you need is a Xeon, a PC Xeon workstation

00:58:32   that comes in a case that looks identical

00:58:34   to one of your weird German amplifier thingamabobbers

00:58:37   that you've already got on your desk

00:58:38   so your desk wouldn't look any different.

00:58:40   The only difference is you just take your screen

00:58:41   and tilt it down and whack some KVM

00:58:45   with your toe or something, and all of a sudden

00:58:46   you're running off of your aluminum amplifier tube thing

00:58:50   that's really a PC.

00:58:52   - Yeah, maybe.

00:58:53   - So question for you, having experienced

00:58:55   this touchscreen PC, which I think it is important to note

00:58:59   that if it's pitched the way an iMac is pitched,

00:59:04   you said that you didn't really care

00:59:06   for the touchscreen features that way,

00:59:08   only when it was in kind of easel mode

00:59:10   or drafting table mode, is that fair?

00:59:12   - Yeah.

00:59:13   So that being said, now that you've seen a touchscreen PC

00:59:16   and said, "Yeah, maybe it's not so bad,"

00:59:19   does that change your opinion on the touch bar

00:59:21   for better, for worse, or otherwise?

00:59:24   - I still think it's way too early to say.

00:59:27   - That's fair.

00:59:28   - And it also very much depends on the app

00:59:31   and what they're using the touch bar for.

00:59:33   You know, in my YouTube review, like, comment, subscribe,

00:59:35   my main focus on the touch bar is

00:59:39   it is not good as a row of buttons.

00:59:42   If I have to look at it, I have failed.

00:59:45   The touch bar is best as a sliding or panning surface.

00:59:49   And it does support multi-touch.

00:59:51   So you could do a pinch gesture on it,

00:59:53   but you could also just do it on the track pad right below.

00:59:55   So it kinda, like, I don't know how,

00:59:59   again, it depends on the app,

01:00:00   I don't know what makes sense to do on the touch bar

01:00:03   versus just using the track pad.

01:00:05   If some apps, as I mentioned,

01:00:07   it's nice to have multiple simultaneous touch input surfaces

01:00:11   So one thing you could do is have your left hand

01:00:13   on the touch bar and have your right hand on the trackpad

01:00:15   and have that be two different inputs

01:00:17   for things like panning a timeline

01:00:19   versus moving the play head, stuff like that.

01:00:21   There's all sorts of stuff you could do

01:00:23   in Creative Pro apps and lots of apps to make use of that.

01:00:27   It's way too early to tell for sure now

01:00:30   what works and what doesn't long term,

01:00:33   but certainly my immediate upfront impression,

01:00:36   my early use impression of the touch bar is

01:00:40   If it's a row of buttons, I never use it.

01:00:42   But when it's used as some kind of big slider,

01:00:45   that is nice.

01:00:46   So we'll see.

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01:02:11   So, it's tomorrow, which means by the time you're listening to this

01:02:16   today or perhaps yesterday, that Super Mario Run has been released to the App Store.

01:02:22   And I hope you're not getting on an airplane because you won't be able to

01:02:26   play it because it is online only. You must maintain a connection to the

01:02:30   internet in order to play.

01:02:32   What?

01:02:33   What is that about?

01:02:35   So the theories about what that's about are copy protection

01:02:39   You know

01:02:40   So everything is pirated on the app stores and the theory goes that it is slightly harder

01:02:46   To pirate it when you have to also deal with a phone home feature that you have to bypass in addition to cracking the whatever

01:02:53   You know to get it

01:02:54   Illegally, I'm not entirely sure if I buy that. I mean historically Nintendo has been really

01:03:00   not smart about copy protection in that they will do things that they think are saving them from piracy when really like

01:03:07   The decrease in piracy is not a good match for the pain that they put regular users through like Nintendo makes really bad trade-offs

01:03:15   They're historically so you can't entirely discount that theory even though practically speaking

01:03:19   It doesn't seem like it would do anything

01:03:22   Except to make it slightly more difficult to pirate it and I think there's a lot of motivation to pirate this thing because it's gonna

01:03:28   be popular. Second one, you can't really discount, is just playing, not gonna say incompetence,

01:03:35   but like, there is an online component to the game. Just having it be online all the

01:03:40   time is a simplification for development. And it could have just been maybe they didn't

01:03:47   think it would be a big deal and they miscalculated and it's simpler to do it this way anyway.

01:03:51   And they will, you know, this is one of the situations where if it's not some wrongheaded

01:03:57   misguided notion about piracy that they will update the game eventually to allow offline play maybe even though it's like six months to a

01:04:03   Year from now that they will update it when they get around to it

01:04:05   They just didn't get around to it and they'll you know, they will do a slow-motion

01:04:09   Reconsideration and say yeah, we messed up

01:04:12   I guess what? What is the third option? Is there any third explanation for online only besides incompetence and

01:04:19   Wrongheaded ideas about piracy

01:04:23   Analytics, I guess

01:04:25   Dynamic content. You can always do that periodically

01:04:28   Yeah, I mean anyway

01:04:30   The bottom line is it's I don't think it will affect the game because people are gonna buy it based on the brand it may affect

01:04:36   How satisfied people are with the game so that when Nintendo comes out with its second game

01:04:40   They will have to emphasize the fact that you're able to run it offline

01:04:43   But yeah, it does not seem like it Nintendo very often find some way to do something

01:04:51   Silly with every one of the things that should be sort of a pure win

01:04:55   So I don't think it will affect

01:04:57   The fortunes of this game just because there's so much pent-up demand for something Nintendo

01:05:02   Besides Pokemon and you know something Mario on on iOS. So I think they'll sell ton of these

01:05:07   I think what is the price gonna be 10 bucks? I believe so

01:05:09   Yeah, so I think they'll do just fine with it. But it but yeah, it's pretty

01:05:13   It's not a good idea to have this thing be online only that's just it's just gonna annoy people

01:05:19   - Yeah, and there was a great discussion about this

01:05:22   on Connected this week, and one of the things

01:05:25   that Mike was saying was like, pointing out,

01:05:27   and this is a huge thing, like, these kind of casual,

01:05:31   quick play, one-handed play games for phones

01:05:35   are really often used for people who are commuting,

01:05:38   like on a subway underground, or who are flying on a plane,

01:05:41   like it's very often used while traveling or commuting.

01:05:44   And there's gonna be so many times

01:05:46   where people would play this game,

01:05:48   like in an everyday subway commute,

01:05:50   where you're underground, you got no connection,

01:05:52   and you just can't play it.

01:05:54   And that's really unfortunate.

01:05:56   - Yeah, I wonder if it's gonna be,

01:05:58   will it not launch,

01:06:01   or does it want to phone home periodically

01:06:03   and you can play it for some period of time,

01:06:04   but then eventually it will complain to you

01:06:06   that it hasn't phoned home in a while?

01:06:07   I don't know what the mechanism's gonna be like.

01:06:10   'Cause it's, I have a hard time believing

01:06:12   that the game won't even launch without a connection,

01:06:13   but who knows?

01:06:14   I mean, it's Nintendo's first try at this,

01:06:17   and maybe they just totally messed it up by thinking the entire world is as connected

01:06:21   as Japan is or something. I don't know. It definitely seems like a miscalculation, especially

01:06:26   since this is not a paid-up front game. So it's not as if it's like, "Well, you've got

01:06:29   your money." They don't. They want you to buy the unlock, and you're not going to buy

01:06:33   the unlock if the first two times you try to play it, it's a "Sorry, can't play because

01:06:37   you're offline."

01:06:38   I'm anxious to try it. I mean, back in the day, I know, Marco, that you were a Sega kind

01:06:43   guy, but I was a Nintendo kind of guy when I was a kid and had everything from the original

01:06:49   NES all the way through the Nintendo 64 and then eventually a Wii.

01:06:54   This is something that should appeal to me and so I'm anxious to try it, but...

01:06:59   And I don't expect that this online only thing is really going to bother me much, but I do

01:07:02   think it's a bummer and I would not put it past Nintendo, like you said, John, to just

01:07:06   be silly about this decision and just not realizing that this is more harm than good.

01:07:12   it.

01:07:13   Easy for me to say.

01:07:14   I have to say that Nintendo doesn't feel like they have, I was going to say mastery, but

01:07:21   I would say they don't even have a handle on mobile gaming yet because all they have

01:07:26   is the one game that they partner, they didn't even develop, Niantic or whatever, the Pokemon

01:07:31   Go thing, which is a second cut in an idea that they've already tried once and that does

01:07:36   take advantage of things that are uniquely mobile, like the fact that you walk around

01:07:40   with it and stuff like that.

01:07:41   Pokemon Go is a pretty good job and takes advantage of some unique things, but this

01:07:45   game itself was a little bit buggy and sketchy in the beginning.

01:07:48   Anyway, that wasn't Nintendo.

01:07:50   And this, I forget, is Nintendo doing this in-house or is this also outsourced to somebody?

01:07:57   But either way, this game, what it looks like, you know, it's got Nintendo's graphics, it's

01:08:02   got Nintendo's IP.

01:08:04   I'm sure it will play well, but in terms of what it is, it's one of those, you know, tap

01:08:08   the screen, Myra is running all on his own, you're tapping the screen to make him jump

01:08:11   and stuff like that, which is fine as far as it goes, but what I find myself thinking

01:08:16   about when I think about games that have stood out to me on iOS, I don't, you know, Super

01:08:24   Mario Run is not in the top tier.

01:08:27   I think of something from a developer that really seemed to understand both, I think,

01:08:33   context of multiple gaming and the things that, you know, playing to its strengths,

01:08:39   avoiding its weaknesses. I think of things like, you know, Alto's Adventure, which on

01:08:46   the surface seems similar. It's always not the same thing. This thing just goes and you

01:08:49   tap a button to make a thing happen. It's like a single tap gaming type experience.

01:08:55   And maybe it's because Nintendo doesn't have any IP that fit with that type of thing. But

01:08:59   I thought those adventures just a so much stronger statement on understanding what's

01:09:04   good about iOS gaming or even something like what is the one with Ida walking around on

01:09:11   the thing?

01:09:12   >> M

01:09:29   in the 2D world, it's like, that's the old context.

01:09:32   Like that may be okay.

01:09:34   Even the real infinite runners take more advantage

01:09:37   of mobile, or more sort of mobile native than this.

01:09:40   Like, so Nintendo taking its existing properties

01:09:43   and finding a way that you can play them

01:09:44   by putting one finger on the screen periodically,

01:09:47   that's all well and good.

01:09:48   But where is the Nintendo equivalent of Alto's Adventure

01:09:53   or even, you know, the Nintendo equivalent of Yearwalk

01:09:56   or whatever, just like, I feel like there are,

01:09:59   They haven't mastered the platform yet, and if they're ever going to make a truly great

01:10:02   iOS game, they have to start developing for it not as like a come on for you to buy the real

01:10:11   Nintendo games, which is what these currently are at this point, but getting their developers

01:10:16   to really understand this platform and producing something that will last in our collective memory

01:10:23   and be as well regarded as the best iOS games. Yeah. Agreed. Fair enough.

01:10:28   So, let's try to not take this to too negative a place, but Apple's made a curious choice

01:10:38   with the new Sierra update for laptops.

01:10:42   For every laptop.

01:10:44   Apparently the battery life meter has never been accurate.

01:10:50   We didn't realize this until people were dissatisfied with not reaching the claimed battery capacity

01:10:57   or length on their brand new MacBook Pros, but suddenly, surely it's not because of that,

01:11:03   but suddenly it's turned out that the battery life meter is totally inaccurate and it's

01:11:08   been removed.

01:11:09   So, I don't know what to make of this.

01:11:16   My initial inclination is, "Oh, we're just trying to sweep under the rug the fact that

01:11:20   these computers don't get the battery life we said they did."

01:11:23   My second thought of this is, well, battery life is just a guess, right?

01:11:29   We don't see on an iOS device how much time remaining we have on our battery.

01:11:34   We see a percentage for sure, but we don't see a time estimate.

01:11:41   And so I want to land in a place where this is not, I don't know if nefarious is really

01:11:50   the word I'm looking for, but it's the best word I can come up with, that it's not nefarious.

01:11:53   And I really feel like the Apple community, and maybe just geeks in general, tend to land on the

01:12:02   nefarious point of view a little too easily. But golly, I'm struggling to figure out a way where

01:12:07   this is not just trying to sweep a different problem under the rug. So I'm—

01:12:11   So I'm –

01:12:12   It's definitely nefarious if you think that this is a sneaky evil thing that someone would

01:12:18   – but like I – in – encompassed in the word nefarious is a certain effectiveness

01:12:24   that I think is not inherent in this solution.

01:12:26   In other words, like a nefarious scheme to steal the jewels should end with you having

01:12:31   the jewels.

01:12:32   If this is a nefarious scheme to address concerns about battery life, it is not particularly

01:12:37   nefarious because it's not – like I – PR-wise, like I just –

01:12:41   I'm just gonna say for all of 2016,

01:12:43   let's just say Apple has not covered itself in glory

01:12:45   in terms of product introductions and everything, right?

01:12:48   And this move,

01:12:51   I don't see how there is a positive outcome

01:12:56   for this for Apple, regardless of the motivation.

01:12:58   Say the motivation,

01:12:59   it has nothing to do with the new laptops.

01:13:01   Like it just seems like a net negative

01:13:04   no matter how I slice it.

01:13:05   And so if it is a change meant to address a customer concern

01:13:10   no matter what that customer concern is,

01:13:13   I honestly don't see how getting rid of it will help.

01:13:17   Now, I understand it in a kind of naive sort of,

01:13:21   just very sort of one-sided view of the world

01:13:26   in that the battery meter is not accurate,

01:13:29   the holidays are coming, we don't have time to fix it,

01:13:33   to stop people from seeing inaccurate information,

01:13:37   or remove it, with the idea that we'll fix it

01:13:40   and put it back, but we don't have time now.

01:13:42   But I don't think you would think about that solution

01:13:46   for any period of time until you realize

01:13:49   that doesn't really help.

01:13:50   Like that makes things worse probably.

01:13:53   Like if it's not working and we're gonna fix it,

01:13:56   then fix it.

01:13:56   If you don't have time to fix it now, fix it later.

01:13:58   If you don't wanna fix it later

01:14:00   because people are upset now,

01:14:01   issue a statement, but removing it,

01:14:04   especially since that information is available elsewhere

01:14:06   in the US and through third-party apps anyway,

01:14:09   It just seems like not a good move PR-wise.

01:14:13   Again, regardless of the motivation,

01:14:14   even the motivations are entirely pure of like,

01:14:16   we realize there's a problem with the new max

01:14:19   and that meter and it's showing bad information, right?

01:14:22   'Cause it doesn't solve a problem a customers have.

01:14:24   It might solve a problem Apple has

01:14:26   in terms of support requests,

01:14:28   and Apple might think it solves the perception problem,

01:14:30   although I really doubt it does,

01:14:32   but does it solve a customer problem?

01:14:34   I guess maybe the customer problem it might be solving

01:14:36   is like Marco's insistence on not having badges

01:14:39   as applications to tell you about how many things you haven't done in them to remove anxiety, but

01:14:45   it really depends because unlike notifications to tell you how many unread things you have in

01:14:49   Instapaper or whatever, if you hide the time remaining for someone who's used to constantly

01:14:55   looking up to see the time remaining, all you've done is replace one anxiety with another. The new

01:15:00   anxiety is I have no idea how much time I have remaining. Normally I know how much time I have

01:15:04   remaining, really they don't, they're just looking at a number that's like a random guess, or not

01:15:08   not random, but that is an estimate based on current whatever like, but it's not removing

01:15:14   anxiety because it's not as if when they glance up there and don't see the time remaining

01:15:18   they're going to relax and say, "Oh, I guess I don't have to worry about it anymore." No,

01:15:21   they're going to be like, "But what is the time remaining? Let me launch activity monitor

01:15:24   and check." Not a wise decision, Apple, I think. And the best thing for them to do is

01:15:32   If the number is misleading or inaccurate

01:15:36   or problematic in some way, make it better.

01:15:39   - Yeah, there are a number of separate issues here

01:15:45   and I think if we, we need to be careful

01:15:48   to talk about them separately and to not like,

01:15:50   let them bleed into each other where they don't need to

01:15:53   because that's a quick way to just lose a discussion

01:15:55   and get sidetracked.

01:15:58   So there's multiple problems here.

01:16:00   Problem number one is that the battery estimate meter

01:16:04   can be and sometimes is inaccurate.

01:16:08   But I've actually found,

01:16:11   I've been using Apple laptops for more than a decade now.

01:16:16   And I have found the battery meter

01:16:18   to be a pretty good rough estimate.

01:16:22   It's not like it says you get two hours

01:16:24   and you actually get 10.

01:16:26   It's not off by that much.

01:16:28   It usually gives you a pretty good estimate

01:16:31   of the number of hours you will roughly get

01:16:34   if you continue using the computer

01:16:36   the way you're using it right now,

01:16:38   or the way you have been using it for the last few minutes.

01:16:41   - But that mental model that you just described,

01:16:43   I don't know if everyone else has that same mental model.

01:16:46   - Sure.

01:16:47   - 'Cause what you described is how most, you know,

01:16:48   long time Mac users use it,

01:16:49   which is like you said, you look up at that number,

01:16:52   and then what the number is trying to tell you,

01:16:53   'cause it's not an instantaneous measurement,

01:16:55   the number is trying to tell you is,

01:16:56   If you keep doing what you've been doing in the recent past,

01:16:59   we think this is what you're gonna get.

01:17:01   And you and I and most people use that number to say,

01:17:04   oh, I better not keep doing whatever the hell I'm doing

01:17:07   because my time, like in other words,

01:17:08   we are never surprised when that number goes up, right?

01:17:11   Because we understand why it goes up.

01:17:13   It's oh, it's because I quit that application

01:17:14   or I stopped that render or whatever I was doing.

01:17:16   Of course the number is gonna go up.

01:17:18   I think regular people,

01:17:20   when they look at that number and it says X,

01:17:22   and then half an hour later,

01:17:25   look at the number and it says X plus 50 minutes are perplexed and don't understand how that

01:17:30   could be the case and start thinking that it's not right. So I think the number is

01:17:35   that, I think that readout is, it's not conveying the mental, your mental model happens

01:17:41   to match the way it works, but I don't think the number itself on its own conveys that

01:17:46   to people. So I think the number is problematic.

01:17:47   - It is, well, it's problematic as it was displayed before

01:17:52   as if it's treated as fact.

01:17:55   So it's, for example, it's problematic

01:17:57   to give minute level precision on that estimate

01:18:01   because it isn't that accurate.

01:18:03   It isn't gonna tell you like, oh, your laptop is gonna die

01:18:06   in exactly six hours and 37 minutes.

01:18:08   Like, no, that's not what's going to happen.

01:18:10   But the value that it had before

01:18:14   in giving you a rough estimate of what you have left.

01:18:18   Again, even if the granularity is number of hours

01:18:21   you have left, that is actually pretty accurate

01:18:25   for a lot of people's uses.

01:18:27   And so we have a number of problems combining here

01:18:30   to make Apple decide to take action here.

01:18:32   One of them is, I think, pretty clearly

01:18:35   the reviews have all been stating,

01:18:38   have all basically agreed, and the customers,

01:18:40   not just crazy reviewers, but actual customers

01:18:42   have all kind of seen like, you know,

01:18:44   I'm not really getting more than like five to seven hours

01:18:47   of battery life on this 10 hour battery life laptop.

01:18:51   That's been a pretty common thing people have said.

01:18:54   My personal experience matches that pretty well.

01:18:57   The other problem is, as I mentioned before,

01:18:59   modern laptops, the main ways they've gotten more efficient

01:19:03   is by reducing the amount of power they use

01:19:06   when they're not doing much.

01:19:07   And when they're really doing a lot,

01:19:10   or when the GPU's on or whatever else,

01:19:12   the top of that power range they can reach

01:19:15   has actually not moved very much.

01:19:17   And they've gotten smaller and lighter

01:19:18   by shrinking the batteries by assuming a bunch of idle power

01:19:21   or a bunch of idle time.

01:19:23   But again, if you push them, if you make them do anything,

01:19:26   they're still using as much power as they used to.

01:19:28   So basically, as we keep making these advancements

01:19:31   and making idle power lower and lower and lower,

01:19:33   but keeping active power kind of the same,

01:19:36   what we're seeing is an increasing difference

01:19:40   in real world battery life depending on what you're doing.

01:19:44   So it used to be, like, you know,

01:19:46   back in the olden days of like, you know,

01:19:48   the Core Duo and the G4 and everything,

01:19:51   back in those early days when we hadn't made

01:19:53   all these advances in idle power reduction,

01:19:55   the difference in how much battery life

01:19:57   your computer would get if you were pushing it hard

01:19:59   versus if you were just browsing the web

01:20:01   was a pretty small difference,

01:20:02   relatively speaking, to today.

01:20:04   Maybe if you were really gentle on it,

01:20:06   you might get like 50% or 75% or 100% more battery life.

01:20:11   Whereas today, if you're like using the CPU hard,

01:20:14   or if you're playing a game,

01:20:16   versus if you're browsing the web

01:20:17   and doing nothing else in the background,

01:20:19   that difference could be the difference

01:20:20   between 90 minutes and 11 hours of battery life.

01:20:24   - That's so ridiculous, but you're right.

01:20:26   - Those are real numbers, like that's actually what happens.

01:20:28   It's surprising, like the difference is vast now,

01:20:32   depending on what you're doing.

01:20:33   And so that factor has over time

01:20:38   made the battery meter less accurate.

01:20:42   So there is, because as what you do changes,

01:20:46   like if you have just spent three hours

01:20:49   browsing the web in Safari with no pigs

01:20:51   that triggered WebGL, then great, you're all set.

01:20:55   But then if you go and somebody sends you a message effect

01:20:59   and the GPU turns on and something else tries

01:21:02   to keep the GPU on for some other reason,

01:21:04   then all, and then at the same time,

01:21:06   like a time machine backup starts,

01:21:08   and Photos decides to analyze some photos for you,

01:21:11   like then you could, your estimate for the last three hours

01:21:16   when all this stuff was happening,

01:21:17   might have told you you had five more hours left.

01:21:19   But now all of a sudden, because your computers

01:21:21   are doing things that use way more power

01:21:23   than what you were using before,

01:21:25   you might only have one hour left.

01:21:26   - That's why the fixing it, like the idea of like,

01:21:29   oh, if the number is bad, fix it.

01:21:30   Fixing it doesn't mean just make it put a better number

01:21:33   because there is no better number

01:21:34   because it can't predict the future.

01:21:35   Fixing it probably means changing it from something

01:21:38   that tells you a supposed amount of time remaining

01:21:40   to something that graphically displays memory

01:21:44   like as a burndown graph or usage over time.

01:21:47   Like you'd like to see a representation

01:21:49   that lets you know you were using energy at this rate.

01:21:53   Here's your total energy that you have.

01:21:54   You were using at this rate,

01:21:56   then more recently you'll be using at this rate

01:21:58   And therefore, like here's the rest of the time remaining,

01:22:00   like some kind of graph or something.

01:22:02   Some other representation that probably doesn't fit

01:22:04   in the menu bar, maybe you can do it as a spark line,

01:22:06   but then you click on it and get a bigger thing.

01:22:08   'Cause that's, you know, like you said,

01:22:10   with this chain, with this increase in the difference

01:22:15   between idle and active power,

01:22:17   this ever increasing difference,

01:22:19   it becomes almost impossible to ever put a single number

01:22:22   up there that's representative

01:22:23   because the variability is too much.

01:22:25   By fixing it, I mean, give the people using,

01:22:29   the customer problem is I have to know how long I have left

01:22:33   and should I do something differently to change that, right?

01:22:36   And also like, people don't know

01:22:38   what they should do differently, right?

01:22:39   So you need to give them feedback.

01:22:42   Did quitting that app help at all?

01:22:43   Let me go look, click the menu bar icon and see the graph

01:22:46   and see like some line level out or something or not.

01:22:49   Like that's the customer problem is

01:22:52   I gotta know how long I have

01:22:54   And if I need to stretch it,

01:22:56   if I need to get a little bit more time out of it,

01:22:59   I'm gonna try a bunch of random crap.

01:23:00   Hopefully the energy saver menu will tell me

01:23:03   like which apps are using a lot of energy,

01:23:04   like that feature they had in Mavericks or whatever.

01:23:07   Hopefully I'll take some action based on that

01:23:09   and then have confirmation from this thing that tells me,

01:23:11   oh yes, you've now changed things

01:23:14   so that it looks like you're back on track.

01:23:16   And doing that with a single number

01:23:18   that fluctuates up and down,

01:23:20   I think is not as useful as some other thing

01:23:22   that gives a historic forward and backward perspective

01:23:25   on things.

01:23:27   - Jon, only you would want a burned down chart

01:23:29   for your battery power.

01:23:30   - Marco doesn't even know what that is.

01:23:31   - Nope, not even, not at all.

01:23:33   - It's all right, it's fine, it's in the parking lot.

01:23:34   - Yep.

01:23:35   (laughing)

01:23:37   So basically, I see the line of thinking

01:23:41   that could lead Apple to think,

01:23:44   we should just get rid of this meter

01:23:45   because it's not very accurate anymore.

01:23:47   But it has a lot of value.

01:23:50   And so to completely get rid of it,

01:23:53   if you just look at a percentage,

01:23:56   all you know is where my battery is right now,

01:23:59   but on something that gets one and a half

01:24:01   to 12 hours of battery life,

01:24:04   that percentage is not very useful.

01:24:06   You know, like it's--

01:24:06   - You gotta do the graph in your head.

01:24:07   You have to be like, oh, I looked at it five minutes ago

01:24:09   and it was this number and I looked at it now,

01:24:11   it's this number and so if I make the slope of that line,

01:24:13   like you're doing the graph in your head.

01:24:14   - Right, and so it is very, very helpful,

01:24:18   and this is not just a geek thing.

01:24:20   I don't wanna hear from people saying,

01:24:21   well, regular people don't need the estimate.

01:24:23   No, anybody who uses a laptop on battery power

01:24:26   and wants it to last a whole flight or a whole day

01:24:28   or a whole span often needs to know,

01:24:31   am I going to make it, given what I'm doing?

01:24:33   Is my battery enough?

01:24:35   That is the problem of the modern age,

01:24:38   is my battery going to make it? (laughs)

01:24:41   So this is a real problem for a lot of people

01:24:44   in a lot of situations.

01:24:45   So to have something that can indicate

01:24:48   whether your battery is going to make it

01:24:49   is very useful and while the time estimate

01:24:53   has never been perfect and as discussed

01:24:56   is actually getting less perfect over time,

01:24:59   it is something and they replaced it with nothing.

01:25:03   The percentage meter does not replace the need

01:25:07   for you to know am I probably gonna make it or not.

01:25:09   It doesn't, it is not good enough

01:25:12   and it's different with laptops versus phones

01:25:14   'cause phones are so easy to carry extra batteries for.

01:25:18   laptops really aren't.

01:25:20   You know, the whole USB-C future

01:25:22   that will eventually be here

01:25:23   where we can have a bunch of external laptop,

01:25:25   or batteries for our laptops,

01:25:27   that's really only true for the 12-inch MacBook,

01:25:30   and only just barely,

01:25:31   because that has very low power draw.

01:25:34   It's, you know, in the realm of big tablet power draw.

01:25:38   So like, you can get a battery pack for those that's small,

01:25:41   and outputs like 15 watts, and that's enough.

01:25:45   You're never gonna get a battery pack

01:25:47   that's gonna be small and light

01:25:49   and can power your 15-inch MacBook Pro

01:25:51   for a meaningful amount of time.

01:25:53   Or that can recharge it quickly

01:25:55   so you can get back to using it.

01:25:56   Like, it's just too much power.

01:25:59   Batteries are big and heavy.

01:26:00   That's not gonna happen in a compelling package

01:26:02   for a very long time, if ever.

01:26:04   So, it is very important for you to know

01:26:07   when you're using your flagship

01:26:10   15-inch professional-grade laptop

01:26:13   that has this nice big 75-watt-hour battery in it

01:26:17   and that can possibly draw up to 87 watts at full load,

01:26:21   it's very nice to know whether you're going to make it

01:26:23   without a charge or not to what you have to do

01:26:26   at the end of the flight or day or whatever,

01:26:28   because if you mess up that estimate,

01:26:31   you're basically out of luck.

01:26:32   You're basically just not gonna have a computer

01:26:34   for a few hours, because you're not gonna,

01:26:36   you can't just plug in a little lipstick battery

01:26:39   from Amazon that was $4 and charge it up again.

01:26:42   It doesn't work that way.

01:26:43   So to treat it like a big phone is not a good analogy.

01:26:46   It just doesn't work.

01:26:47   - Well, there is one phone feature that you could use though,

01:26:51   like you're thinking more fixes to this thing.

01:26:52   Treating it like a big phone made me think of like,

01:26:54   what do you do on your iPhone?

01:26:55   Like say you're on your iPhone

01:26:56   and you're on a cross country flight

01:26:57   and you wanna be doing stuff on your phone

01:27:00   and there's no time remaining on the iPhone,

01:27:02   but you look at the percentage

01:27:03   and you kinda know how long your phone usually lasts

01:27:05   and you're like, it's not gonna make it.

01:27:06   What would you do?

01:27:08   - Well, I'd plug it in.

01:27:09   - Yeah, I'd shoot the hostage.

01:27:11   (both laughing)

01:27:12   No, yeah, plug in.

01:27:14   I guess that is an option

01:27:15   because like you said, the phone is,

01:27:16   but low power mode, I was thinking of low power mode, right?

01:27:19   So on the phone, the first on the phone itself

01:27:22   will go into low power mode,

01:27:23   but you can turn it on yourself manually at any time.

01:27:25   And you're hoping what that will do is like,

01:27:27   you don't know, it's just switching preferences

01:27:29   or I think it's in, is it in a control center?

01:27:31   No, I forget.

01:27:32   Low power mode will, you know,

01:27:34   you basically say go into like camel mode,

01:27:38   just try to like not do stuff and be more calm.

01:27:42   A low power mode for macOS,

01:27:45   but it's as simple as a switch,

01:27:47   would solve the customer problem better

01:27:50   than the very geeky, silly solution I was suggesting

01:27:54   of like graphs and everything,

01:27:55   which would be totally cool and would convey the information.

01:27:57   But again, the customer problem is like you said,

01:27:59   am I gonna make it?

01:28:01   And so in this respect, treating it like a phone

01:28:03   and having a low power mode switch,

01:28:04   I think is one possible viable solution.

01:28:08   And maybe Apple's got that planned

01:28:09   and maybe ditching this is, you know,

01:28:11   an ill-advised transition where they get rid of this

01:28:15   and replace it with low power mode.

01:28:17   And I'm hoping low power mode doesn't already exist

01:28:19   in Mac OS and I just don't know that

01:28:21   because I haven't reviewed the last two versions.

01:28:22   But you guys can confirm.

01:28:24   - Slacker.

01:28:25   - So, and this leads into another problem too,

01:28:27   which is, you know, the small laptops,

01:28:29   the Escape and the 13X Touch Bar, and the MacBook One,

01:28:34   these all suffer from moderate battery life

01:28:38   because they're so small.

01:28:39   And that's generally part of the trade off

01:28:42   of getting a very, very small laptop,

01:28:44   is usually the battery life isn't very good

01:28:45   'cause batteries are big and heavy.

01:28:47   So to get something very small,

01:28:48   you gotta take a smaller battery life, that's okay.

01:28:51   On the bigger ones, like the 15 inch,

01:28:54   typically you get pretty good battery life.

01:28:58   And this hasn't always been the case,

01:28:59   but generally speaking, it's supposed to be pretty good.

01:29:02   However, on the 15 inch,

01:29:04   as I mentioned in previous episodes,

01:29:06   there used to be an option to not get a discrete GPU

01:29:08   on the base model.

01:29:09   That option is no longer present on the current line.

01:29:12   So every 15 inch comes with a discrete GPU

01:29:15   that is dynamically switched to, so it has both.

01:29:17   The integrated GPU that uses almost no power

01:29:19   and then the discrete GPU, the big AMD or ATI,

01:29:22   whatever it is, AMD one, that it switches to

01:29:25   whenever it feels that it needs more graphics horsepower.

01:29:28   And this is automatic switching.

01:29:30   And there's an option in settings

01:29:32   to lock on the discrete GPU to not automatically switch.

01:29:37   Almost no one should ever enable that option

01:29:40   because that just locks on the very high power draw,

01:29:43   very hot external GPU.

01:29:45   However, there is no option to only lock on

01:29:49   and to only use the low power integrated GPU.

01:29:53   - That's the first thing the low power mode

01:29:54   would do, obviously.

01:29:55   - Right, so basically, and there's a utility

01:29:59   by Cody Krieger called Graphix Card Status,

01:30:01   GFX Card Status, that shows you which one is in use

01:30:04   at any given time.

01:30:05   And I've been doing my testing,

01:30:09   It can even show notifications when the discrete one

01:30:13   turns on, so you can kind of tell why it turned on,

01:30:16   because it would be based on what you just did.

01:30:18   And it can tell you, of course, which apps

01:30:20   are holding it on as well, because it's held by an app basis.

01:30:24   So you can tell if apps are misbehaving,

01:30:26   or if something's using it that you don't really think

01:30:28   you need to be doing right now, you can turn it off

01:30:30   to say battery life, because the battery usage

01:30:34   when the discrete GPU is active is substantially higher.

01:30:37   and you get substantially noticeably worse battery life

01:30:40   when that high power GPU is on.

01:30:42   However, as I said, there's no option to say,

01:30:46   whatever you do, do not turn that GPU on.

01:30:49   And I would love to know from people in the know

01:30:53   with the engineering, maybe ATP Tipster,

01:30:56   is there a hardware reason, is there some reason

01:30:59   why there can't be an option that says

01:31:02   only use the integrated GPU right now?

01:31:04   because that would make a huge difference in battery power.

01:31:08   Like I've heard various times that like,

01:31:10   sometimes it's required when,

01:31:12   if you have an external display plugged in,

01:31:14   because like the way it's integrated in.

01:31:16   And that would be understandable,

01:31:17   'cause most people, when they're using an external display,

01:31:20   are plugged into power.

01:31:21   - Or not on a plane, unless they're the iMac

01:31:24   and Panera bread again.

01:31:25   - 'Cause something's powering the display, so obviously--

01:31:27   - Someone should do that though.

01:31:29   Bring an external display with you on your flight,

01:31:32   and just put it on the tray next to you.

01:31:34   - Right, but anyway, I would like to know

01:31:37   why that option isn't there.

01:31:38   And there might be a good reason,

01:31:40   but if there isn't a good reason,

01:31:41   that option needs to be there.

01:31:43   Because we know that the integrated GPU

01:31:48   is good enough for a lot of things.

01:31:51   It is not a great GPU, it is not a high-powered GPU.

01:31:54   We have a different high-powered GPU for those needs.

01:31:56   But if I'm using the laptop and I need to eke out

01:31:58   every bit of power from it,

01:31:59   if I'm on some kind of long plane trip or something,

01:32:01   and as you said, this is low power mode, right?

01:32:04   If you want your laptop to go in low power mode,

01:32:05   you have to make sure that discrete GPU never turns on.

01:32:09   And there's currently literally no way to prevent that.

01:32:12   Like, code decreakers, graphics card status,

01:32:17   on older computers, it would be able to actually

01:32:20   block the switching and lock it on integrated only.

01:32:23   But on the more modern Macs, that doesn't happen anymore.

01:32:25   It can try, but then what happens is

01:32:27   the discrete one turns on anyway.

01:32:29   So it's, however it works, it seemingly isn't able

01:32:33   to override the system behavior now.

01:32:35   I would love to have that option be there.

01:32:37   We also know, in the last generation,

01:32:40   they had, as I mentioned, they had the option

01:32:42   to get a 15-inch without getting a discrete GPU at all.

01:32:46   If that option, I've heard from various people

01:32:48   that the current Skylake CPU generation from Intel,

01:32:52   that the GPUs aren't very good.

01:32:54   And that would be a plausible reason

01:32:56   why Apple wouldn't offer that option,

01:32:57   that basically they're too slow to offer that

01:33:00   as a good computer.

01:33:01   But I would love the option to opt into that sometimes

01:33:04   when I really need the battery power.

01:33:05   So that would be great.

01:33:07   If Apple wants to address its battery issues

01:33:10   with the 15 inch MacBook Pro,

01:33:11   the smaller ones, they have different issues.

01:33:13   They have, mostly 'cause they just have

01:33:15   really small batteries, 'cause that's how they're,

01:33:17   that's how they're so, so thin and light.

01:33:18   But the 15 inch, one of the biggest issues

01:33:21   is that GPU switching, and if I have a way to disable that,

01:33:26   this laptop will last a lot longer.

01:33:28   - We'll put a link in the show notes to

01:33:30   Ars Technica's review of the Touch Bar laptop. So in their battery test, this is their sort of

01:33:35   light Wi-Fi, you know, web browsing battery test, and they did a test with the discrete GPU on and

01:33:42   one with it off. And the one with it off, they got 15 hours of battery life. This is out of the

01:33:46   2016 15-inch MacBook Pro. And with the discrete GPU on, seven hours. So, I mean, this is still

01:33:52   light usage, so seven hours is still pretty good, but they're just web browsing. But that's a 2x

01:33:57   difference doing the exact same activity you know the only difference is the

01:34:01   discrete GPU is on or off so in low power mode that I mean that's that's the

01:34:05   gimme like turn off the discrete GPU and accept that you're you know you're not

01:34:08   gonna play any games because your graphics programs were terrible but

01:34:10   think of all the other things you could do Marcos favorite thing you know photo

01:34:13   is analyzing his pictures in the background time machine backups like

01:34:17   just so everything that the phone does in low power mode stops as many

01:34:20   optional background activity type things that it can possibly stop you know or

01:34:25   or just pauses them or delays them or whatever,

01:34:27   just don't do that stuff.

01:34:29   Clock down the processor, do like whatever you have to do

01:34:32   because that's, when you go into low power mode,

01:34:34   whether you're automatically

01:34:35   because your battery is getting low,

01:34:37   which would be a good idea,

01:34:38   or just at the beginning of your flight, do it.

01:34:40   It's like Xcode will run fine in low power mode.

01:34:43   Like your compiles might take longer,

01:34:45   but the typing part will be fine.

01:34:47   Like it's not, you're not doing anything

01:34:49   that aggressively intensive.

01:34:50   And it's not like they have no GPU.

01:34:51   There is a wimpy, crappy GPU built into the,

01:34:54   know the integrated GPU is not as may not be as good as it was in the past but it will get you

01:35:01   by and you know it another thing we'll put in the show it's just a link to this big explanation of

01:35:07   how Mac developers can make their applications better behaved because there are many things that

01:35:14   system frameworks and your own application might do to unknowingly turn on the discrete GPU it's

01:35:18   not as if there's some like call that you make that says hey I would like to turn on the discrete

01:35:21   GPU out. The whole point is it's automatic. It automatically turns it on when it needs it,

01:35:25   and it doesn't use it when it doesn't. But apparently that's an opt-in type of thing,

01:35:30   and if you don't opt into it, your application will not automatically switch between integrated

01:35:34   and discrete, and the default is just use the discrete all the time if you do any of

01:35:38   these sort of activities that think they might need it at some point in your application.

01:35:41   So there could be a software factor here where people just need to update their applications

01:35:47   to be nicer, but that's, that's an, I wouldn't look for that to save anyone's bacon unless there's

01:35:52   some specific application that you're using all the time that's going to benefit from this,

01:35:55   because Apple has been preaching this for years and years and years about how to make your

01:35:59   applications energy efficient. And they have a lot of great tools and a lot of great ideas. But the

01:36:03   bottom line is, over the past five to 10 years, it seems like application developers have not

01:36:09   prioritized the energy efficiency of their application very highly, like they'll spend

01:36:15   more time on performance and bugs and features, rightly so probably, than energy efficiency.

01:36:20   Apple itself has probably been one of the best companies in terms of making their applications

01:36:24   use less power.

01:36:25   Just look at how much power Safari uses compared to Chrome to see how seriously they take this.

01:36:30   So Apple is highly motivated to do it because they make the hardware.

01:36:34   Other vendors seem to be less inclined to do that, and that leads to the other solution

01:36:40   which we have talked about so many times in the past to this problem.

01:36:42   You know, you've got low power mode. You've got a proving the way that people see the information. You've also got

01:36:48   Sorry for the umpteenth time make the laptop two millimeter sticker and put my battery in it because

01:36:54   if you make the battery life good enough that people like

01:36:57   Get through the day ish or it seems about the same or better than the previous one

01:37:02   Then there is way way less spreading about oh, we need a new way to present this information to the user

01:37:09   that's accurate or blah, blah, blah.

01:37:10   Like it just stops being a concern.

01:37:12   The same way that battery life on iPads

01:37:16   mostly stopped being a concern for the first one.

01:37:19   But the fact that it was 10 hours, like, oh, well,

01:37:22   you know, from iPad to iPad,

01:37:24   when it fluctuates from like,

01:37:25   I used to get 10 in the previous one

01:37:27   and I get eight on this one or nine or 11.

01:37:29   But it's long enough that it's not a big deal, right?

01:37:33   Whereas it seems like the 15 inch laptops in particular

01:37:36   have been existing on the border,

01:37:39   where it's like not enough to get you through

01:37:42   a whole day of hard work,

01:37:43   maybe enough to get you through

01:37:45   a cross-country flight of medium work.

01:37:48   And so fluctuations like this,

01:37:49   especially when there can be a 2X range

01:37:51   between discrete and integrated GPU uses,

01:37:54   it's well within the discomfort range.

01:37:57   So if you could add an hour or two,

01:38:00   so that basically that it seems like for the most part

01:38:02   in regular usage, your 2016 15-inch MacBook Pro

01:38:06   it's about the same battery life as your 2015,

01:38:09   then all of a sudden all these concerns

01:38:11   that we were talking about become much less urgent

01:38:15   in exchange for you having a thicker laptop.

01:38:17   So I don't know if Apple's ever planning on pursuing that,

01:38:20   but it's not like they don't have that option.

01:38:22   They do make the hardware.

01:38:24   - Yeah, fair enough.

01:38:26   Now, Marco, your post that you put up about this,

01:38:30   I have to ask, I feel like you're trying

01:38:32   to give a subliminal message here,

01:38:33   but I just can't put my finger on what it is.

01:38:35   - It's not subliminal when the picture is like the giant,

01:38:38   it's like bigger than the text.

01:38:40   - Yeah, there's a little bit of inception going on here.

01:38:43   I just had to congratulate you because at first,

01:38:45   I didn't understand where you were going with this.

01:38:48   - How?

01:38:48   - And it took a, well, no, no, no,

01:38:50   like I looked at the first picture and I was like, okay,

01:38:52   and then I looked at the second picture.

01:38:53   - Why is there a picture of a cow?

01:38:55   - Right, no, seriously, I did not understand

01:38:56   what you're driving at until like, I think,

01:38:58   the third picture, then I was like, oh.

01:38:59   And then my favorite was figuring out

01:39:01   what the relevance of the last picture was.

01:39:04   said no, that was well done.

01:39:05   So, are you, all kidding aside,

01:39:11   your post anyway seems to be a pretty clear statement

01:39:15   that you think that this is a poor choice.

01:39:18   How would you phrase it now?

01:39:21   Like, what do you think about this?

01:39:23   Is this a good idea, is this a bad idea?

01:39:26   - So, again, there are multiple issues here, right?

01:39:29   So, one of the issues is, is this battery meter accurate?

01:39:33   A second issue is, is it worth removing it?

01:39:38   Because it does serve a lot of useful purposes for people.

01:39:41   And to remove it with no replacement

01:39:46   that can serve those purposes of basically gauging

01:39:49   whether you're going to make it or not.

01:39:51   That is not great.

01:39:53   And then another issue is, are they doing this

01:39:57   in response to criticism that the battery life

01:39:59   of these machines is not great?

01:40:01   So I think the answer to question number one of like,

01:40:05   is the battery meter accurate?

01:40:07   The answer is, well, sometimes.

01:40:10   But I think it's accurate often enough to be useful

01:40:14   and I wouldn't necessarily remove it for that.

01:40:16   I might reduce its precision and drop it down

01:40:18   to just hours and not show minutes, but that's just me.

01:40:21   I don't work for Apple, maybe there's a reason, okay.

01:40:24   Question number two of like, is it a good idea

01:40:26   to make this removal with nothing that can replace it?

01:40:29   And I'd say no, it isn't.

01:40:32   Fortunately, those of us who care,

01:40:35   we can install third party utilities

01:40:36   or just look in Activity Monitor

01:40:38   because like iStat Menus has it,

01:40:40   Activity Monitor has it, Coconut Battery has it,

01:40:42   'cause all these things are querying

01:40:44   the low level IO kit framework

01:40:46   and IO kit's giving the same estimate.

01:40:48   So not only can third party apps provide

01:40:50   their own estimates, but they're using the same data source,

01:40:53   I think in most cases.

01:40:54   They're using the same data source

01:40:55   that is the thing that was driving that menu bar.

01:40:58   so it's not like you're even getting a different estimate.

01:41:00   You're getting the same underlying framework

01:41:02   that's reporting these numbers, just in a different UI.

01:41:04   So that's cool, I personally use iStatMenus for that,

01:41:06   and I like iStatMenus quite a bit, so go check that out.

01:41:10   So, you know, basically, question number one,

01:41:12   Apple had a maybe okay answer for that one.

01:41:15   Question number two of removing it

01:41:16   without having any replacement for this function,

01:41:19   I don't think Apple has a good answer for that.

01:41:21   And question number three, like is this actually

01:41:24   just a response to try to maybe cover up

01:41:28   the battery problem a little bit,

01:41:30   and I don't think Apple would have a good response

01:41:33   to that either, at least one that would be believable.

01:41:37   So basically to me, this reads poorly.

01:41:41   This reads like a PR Band-Aid on what is a legitimate

01:41:46   product shortcoming that I hope Apple addresses.

01:41:50   - And not a successful Band-Aid, not even a good Band-Aid.

01:41:53   - Right. - Like, as I'm saying,

01:41:54   it's not, it's only nefarious if it's a clever way

01:41:56   to keep people quiet.

01:41:57   This will do the, have the opposite effect.

01:41:59   - Right, so, now the interesting footnote to this

01:42:03   is that the early reports of this OS update

01:42:07   are that it actually improves battery life noticeably.

01:42:09   (laughing)

01:42:11   - Of course. - So, this,

01:42:12   of course making this more complicated

01:42:15   and kind of hilarious, like, so apparently,

01:42:19   there were some issues with the GPU management.

01:42:23   - You don't say.

01:42:25   - And apparently some of these issues have been fixed

01:42:30   in the .2 release.

01:42:33   I personally am seeing with my now illicit tools

01:42:36   to show me a battery estimate,

01:42:38   I'm now seeing estimates of more like 12 hours

01:42:43   under my idle usage.

01:42:44   And I've only had this update installed now

01:42:46   for a few hours.

01:42:47   so I really can't give a real report yet.

01:42:50   But MacRumors already has a thing about it

01:42:52   saying they're hearing from people too.

01:42:54   It seems like this might be a real thing

01:42:56   that this update actually does improve battery life

01:42:59   noticeably on this computer, at least at idle.

01:43:02   I'm guessing--

01:43:03   - How much of this is the end

01:43:05   of your first run experience jobs?

01:43:07   - You're talking about ending the photo library stuff?

01:43:09   - Spotlight, photo library, all the crap that,

01:43:12   you know, on a fresh Mac that's newly signed

01:43:14   into your iCloud and doing all the stuff that happens

01:43:18   after you do an install and put all your apps on it.

01:43:20   And you were mentioning how it was taking forever

01:43:22   for photos to be done doing whatever the hell it was doing.

01:43:24   Maybe it's done now?

01:43:25   - Nowhere close.

01:43:27   No, photos, I'm honestly thinking about just leaving

01:43:31   iCloud Photo Library and just moving on

01:43:33   because the Mac app, first of all,

01:43:38   I think, I don't wanna make this a complaining show

01:43:41   about Apple because I actually have been very positive

01:43:43   episode so far for the most part, however.

01:43:46   The Photos for Mac app, it has so much potential,

01:43:50   and I would say almost all of its potential is unrealized.

01:43:57   That's the nicest way I can put it.

01:44:00   - Well done.

01:44:01   - And I do think that the decision that Apple did this summer

01:44:05   to have their photo object recognition

01:44:12   basically be done on device and then to not sync that

01:44:15   across all the devices, so basically every device

01:44:17   you set up has to do its own image and object recognition

01:44:20   and face recognition in the Photos app.

01:44:23   I think that that was a mistake.

01:44:25   - That's not really a decision based on the talk show live

01:44:28   where this very issue was brought up.

01:44:29   It was so clear from, I think it was Craig

01:44:31   answering the question, that the only reason

01:44:33   that's the case is because they didn't have time

01:44:34   to do the better solution.

01:44:35   That's it. - Well, that's a decision then.

01:44:37   It was their decision to ship it.

01:44:39   - Yeah, I know, but I think it was the right decision

01:44:41   to ship it instead of waiting until they got that.

01:44:43   Like I think they made the right call there.

01:44:45   Like you either delay until you get this solution.

01:44:47   I mean, so there's three options or, you know,

01:44:49   the other one is like,

01:44:50   do it like Google does and do it all server side.

01:44:52   Apple doesn't want to do that for privacy.

01:44:53   Don't ship it or ship it with the less efficient thing.

01:44:57   I think they pick the right option.

01:44:58   It's a shame.

01:44:59   It's a shame that they didn't have it worked out.

01:45:01   And it's a shame for your battery

01:45:03   that it has to do this on every single one of your Macs.

01:45:05   But definitely I wouldn't want to wait

01:45:07   an actual year for this application.

01:45:09   - Well, but you weren't waiting for the application,

01:45:12   you were only waiting for the search, the object search.

01:45:16   - Yeah, I appreciate the object search enough

01:45:19   that I'm willing to, I mean, granted,

01:45:21   I don't have laptops, right, but I'm totally,

01:45:23   I will pay the price for,

01:45:24   and mine did the same thing, by the way,

01:45:26   the same like, so when is this ever gonna finish

01:45:28   and is there a way I can make it go

01:45:30   and let me leave my computer on

01:45:31   and set it not to go to sleep?

01:45:32   I did all the same things you did,

01:45:33   so I had all the same frustrations,

01:45:35   and yet still, I would say, that the benefit I get

01:45:38   from being able to type something in and find photos

01:45:40   is worth it to me.

01:45:41   - So I've had this laptop now for,

01:45:44   I mean this one I've had for over a week,

01:45:47   and it is less than halfway done scanning my photo library.

01:45:52   - Is it making any progress?

01:45:54   That's the key.

01:45:55   Mine for a long time didn't look like

01:45:56   it was making any progress.

01:45:57   - It's making very slow progress.

01:45:59   So I'm keeping track too,

01:46:00   'cause I just screenshot the people tab

01:46:03   where it shows you the actual number.

01:46:04   - 'Cause you can't memorize it

01:46:05   and do the graph in your head, right?

01:46:07   - Right, exactly, right, there you go.

01:46:09   (laughing)

01:46:10   And like, I don't know how to make it go,

01:46:13   but anyway, it doesn't, it seems that the photo indexing

01:46:18   is not mostly a battery problem,

01:46:21   because when it's on battery, it doesn't seem to do it.

01:46:24   It seems to be smart about that.

01:46:26   When you plug it in, the photo's agent

01:46:29   will require the discrete GPU,

01:46:31   and will start doing the indexing.

01:46:33   So I believe it's GPU based, or at least GPU assisted,

01:46:35   which is nice.

01:46:36   That's one of the things, by the way, at WWDC,

01:46:38   that they've emphasized for years and years.

01:46:41   Having all sorts of power assertions

01:46:42   and being aware of the context that you're in

01:46:44   and if you're on battery life,

01:46:46   that's what they want to happen.

01:46:47   Instead of having a big low power mode button

01:46:49   or anything like that, they just want applications

01:46:50   to be smart and understand what the deal is.

01:46:53   Behave Apple's things like, "Oh, use super low priority I/O

01:46:56   and don't even run this at all if you're on battery."

01:46:59   They have APIs for all this stuff, but A, like I said,

01:47:01   it's low down on developers prior to this,

01:47:03   and B, even though they have all that stuff

01:47:06   on a platform like iOS, it is still both useful

01:47:09   and I think recommended to have a low power mode

01:47:11   that comes on automatically when you're really low

01:47:13   and that the user can put on it anytime they want

01:47:15   because that is the right granularity, I feel like.

01:47:18   One switch somewhere easily accessible

01:47:20   with some visual indication that it's on

01:47:22   with like the yellow battery meter or whatever iOS shows.

01:47:25   I still think that's a feature

01:47:26   they should totally add to Mac OS.

01:47:28   - I agree.

01:47:29   - And on iOS, I actually do, in Overcast,

01:47:32   whenever I have any kind of sync activity,

01:47:39   I have a lot of choices about how much do I wait

01:47:42   and coalesce all these sync updates

01:47:43   before I actually make a network request to my server.

01:47:46   And as you're listening to a show,

01:47:48   how often do I report to the server?

01:47:50   What timestamp you've listened up to

01:47:52   so that it can sync to your other devices reliably?

01:47:55   I have all sorts of coalesce delays

01:47:57   and granularity delays, things like that,

01:48:00   and I run them all through a function

01:48:02   that applies multipliers based on the current power state,

01:48:07   whether you're on Wi-Fi or cellular,

01:48:08   whether your battery's above certain thresholds,

01:48:10   and whether the low power mode's activated.

01:48:12   So when low power mode's activated,

01:48:14   I believe I just multiply everything by four or something,

01:48:16   which is like make everything really spaced out.

01:48:18   And so I actually dynamically adjust all of those

01:48:21   based on all those different factors of like,

01:48:23   basically how much power do you have to spare

01:48:25   and how much power will this take right now?

01:48:27   It's like if you're on WiFi, I do things more often.

01:48:30   If you're on cellular, I don't.

01:48:31   So all these, I have all these different multipliers

01:48:33   in there and it really helps a lot

01:48:36   to control my app's battery usage.

01:48:37   But I did all that because it matters.

01:48:40   On iOS, it matters a lot and it has mattered

01:48:42   since the beginning of iOS.

01:48:44   On the Mac, for so long, I think developers

01:48:46   weren't needing to do really much of that

01:48:48   because it didn't really matter.

01:48:50   Like how much would that actually affect

01:48:52   people's battery lives in the past?

01:48:53   But as we've moved towards this now

01:48:56   massive delta between when the processor is active and when it's idle, this now massive

01:49:02   delta of battery life, now it matters a lot more. And so I hope Mac developers are conscientious

01:49:09   of this, as many Mac developers use 15X MacBook Pros. So I hope that they are conscientious

01:49:15   to this and will actively work to reduce their apps energy usage now that the Macs that people

01:49:22   running their software on, basically now it matters

01:49:25   a lot more whether their apps are responsible or not.

01:49:28   Because again, before it didn't matter much at all,

01:49:30   and now it matters a lot.

01:49:32   And as time goes on, it's very clear that, you know,

01:49:35   we've been on this path for a while now,

01:49:39   that we are going to continue to make idle power savings,

01:49:43   and continue to not really lower the ceiling very much

01:49:47   of maximum power.

01:49:48   So this issue's only going to get worse.

01:49:50   this delta is only going to get larger over time

01:49:53   as we make these further advancements in power efficiency.

01:49:56   So it will only become more important over time

01:50:00   for everyone to really optimize their power usage

01:50:02   when you're on battery.

01:50:03   And so I hope people do.

01:50:04   I hope the Mac developer ecosystem is healthy enough

01:50:08   that people have the motivation and resources

01:50:11   to update their apps that much.

01:50:13   I hope that they are conscientious enough to do it.

01:50:16   And I look forward to seeing if they do.

01:50:19   I think the future is desktop computers though, don't you think?

01:50:22   Oh my god.

01:50:24   Thanks so much for our three sponsors this week,

01:50:27   Fetterment, Hover, and Squarespace, and we will see you next week.

01:50:30   Now the show is over, they didn't even mean to begin

01:50:37   'Cause it was accidental (accidental)

01:50:40   Oh, it was accidental (accidental)

01:50:43   John didn't do any research, Marco and Casey wouldn't let him

01:50:48   'Cause it was accidental (accidental)

01:50:51   Oh, it was accidental (accidental)

01:50:54   And you can find the show notes at ATP.fm

01:50:59   And if you're into Twitter, you can follow them

01:51:03   @C-A-S-E-Y-L-I-S-S

01:51:08   So that's Kasey Liss, M-A-R-C-O-A-R-M

01:51:12   Auntie Marco Arment

01:51:15   S-I-R-A-C-U-S-A-C-R-A-C-U-S-A

01:51:20   It's accidental

01:51:23   They didn't mean to

01:51:25   Accidental

01:51:28   ♫ Tech podcast so long

01:51:31   - Have you been watching any more Grand Tour kids?

01:51:37   - No, everyone says it sucks, so I've just decided--

01:51:40   - You're the only one left watching it, Casey.

01:51:42   - Yeah, it kinda seemed like,

01:51:44   based on what Casey based on what you wrote

01:51:47   and what I've seen a few other people say as well,

01:51:49   it really does seem like I got the best of all worlds

01:51:53   by watching episode one and then stopping.

01:51:56   I don't know if that's entirely true.

01:51:58   I stand by skip episode two,

01:52:01   or come back to it well after the fact.

01:52:03   I do still like the show,

01:52:08   but man, I don't love it like I used to.

01:52:10   Well, I mean, admittedly, that was a different show

01:52:12   if you wanna be pedantic about it,

01:52:13   but you know what I'm driving at.

01:52:15   Curious to see what this week brings.

01:52:18   - And not having seen all of the ones past episode one

01:52:21   that everyone says are horrible,

01:52:23   even just seeing episode one,

01:52:24   even though I enjoyed it, I could see this path of,

01:52:29   we talked about it here, this path of like,

01:52:30   you know, this seems like they're pushing a little hard

01:52:32   on these certain areas that don't work.

01:52:35   And even, honestly, even in the last couple seasons

01:52:38   of the BBC Top Gear show, with them on it,

01:52:40   you know, that version of it, you could tell

01:52:43   it was starting to go in some directions

01:52:45   that were cringe-worthy, and it was starting to lose,

01:52:49   you know, some of the bits were getting

01:52:50   a little more contrived, and it was starting to lose

01:52:53   some of its charm in a lot of it, as it got seemingly more contrived and seemingly less

01:53:00   just kind of raw, I guess.

01:53:03   Well, that's the thing is that I'm pretty good at being able to watch a film or a TV

01:53:10   show and not pick apart how it was made or what was real and what wasn't. But where

01:53:18   In Top Gear, I could watch most of them and feel like it was a contrived situation that

01:53:26   they just let play out.

01:53:28   Let's race to Verbié and see what happens.

01:53:30   And yes, there are probably more efficient ways to go than, I forget how that one went,

01:53:35   but like bus to train to plane to train to bus to running, etc.

01:53:40   There's probably a more efficient way, but that should take around the same amount of

01:53:43   time as it takes Jeremy to drive it.

01:53:45   So let's set it up so that it should be interesting and then let it play out."

01:53:50   And so there's a lot of that that was probably staged and deliberate, and I think a lot of

01:53:55   it that wasn't.

01:53:56   Whereas in Grand Tour, it seems like it's way heavy on staging everything to the point

01:54:03   that it's obvious.

01:54:05   And as we discussed, I think, last time, I think the three hosts have forgotten that

01:54:09   they're not actors, which is troubling.

01:54:12   And so the second episode was very self-indulgent and very much them trying to act.

01:54:17   The third episode I actually thought was pretty good.

01:54:19   I liked that one.

01:54:21   And then this last episode, some was good, some was not.

01:54:24   And so, I don't know, I'm curious to see where this goes.

01:54:28   I think if I understand it right, this is a like 12 episode run, I thought, although

01:54:34   I might be wrong about that, maybe there's only a couple more.

01:54:38   Either way, I'm curious to see how this plays out.

01:54:39   John you also have not been watching is that correct? That's mostly just because I haven't had time to watch anything like I have

01:54:45   Been sitting there with my iPad which is where I usually watch this thing and thinking oh, I should catch a few minutes

01:54:51   I almost watched it's not like I'm

01:54:53   Against ever watching it again, but I will probably be leaning pretty heavily on the skip button to get to the part

01:54:59   That has to do with cars

01:55:01   Yeah

01:55:02   Which man you're gonna you're gonna be doing a lot of skipping a lot of skipping now

01:55:06   Or maybe I'll just have it on the background when I'm, you know, doing something else. I don't know.

01:55:10   Yeah, yeah, Top Gear never really used to be a second screen kind of show for me or yeah

01:55:16   I never used to really like what look at Twitter while I was watching Top Gear and and I caught myself barely paying attention during

01:55:23   I don't know like the second or maybe fourth episode. It's okay though. It's okay

01:55:28   Now Marco in a semi-related note. Is this your first winner with the Tesla? Yeah

01:55:33   - Yeah, yeah, 'cause I got it in March or April, so yeah.

01:55:36   - Anything interesting come of that?

01:55:38   - Well, we haven't had any snow yet, really.

01:55:40   It snowed for five minutes one night and that was it,

01:55:42   so we haven't really had winter weather

01:55:44   to deal with it yet.

01:55:45   - Did you change tires?

01:55:46   - I'm not planning on doing it this year.

01:55:49   I will see how it works, 'cause I have all seasons now.

01:55:52   Like with the M5, I had basically flat balls of rubber

01:55:56   on there for the summertime.

01:55:57   (laughing)

01:55:58   But it's stock tires were comically ineffective

01:56:01   in any kind of slippery or cold weather.

01:56:04   So I used winter tires seasonally for that

01:56:07   because I kind of had to to make it useful.

01:56:09   This, the Tesla's all-wheel drive, as I mentioned,

01:56:15   when I did the test drive, which was last February

01:56:17   on a really cold day with a whole bunch of mud

01:56:20   and crap and gravel all over the roads,

01:56:22   I was blown away by how good the all-wheel drive system was.

01:56:25   I know that battery range is gonna be less in the winter

01:56:30   because a combination of just batteries

01:56:33   being less effective at very cold temperatures

01:56:36   and also using the heaters will reduce the range a lot.

01:56:40   So I expect that and that's, you know,

01:56:43   I knew that going in, that's fine.

01:56:45   We'll see how it goes in practice

01:56:46   but I'm not concerned really.

01:56:48   I'm looking forward to the all wheel drive.

01:56:50   I'm looking forward to seeing how it performs

01:56:54   in horrible conditions.

01:56:55   And yeah, that's it.

01:56:58   I had to start up my snowblower recently,

01:57:01   which was interesting.

01:57:03   - Did you end up with a gas one or an electric one?

01:57:05   I don't recall.

01:57:06   - I ended up with a gas one.

01:57:07   It was delivered about a day after the last snow

01:57:11   of last season.

01:57:12   - Naturally.

01:57:13   - So the guy who delivered it started it up for me

01:57:17   to show me kinda how to do it,

01:57:19   and then put it in the garage and waited for snow,

01:57:23   which never came.

01:57:24   So at the end of the season,

01:57:25   various people who knew about these,

01:57:27   who knew about such things,

01:57:28   'cause I've never owned a gas-powered lawn appliance

01:57:32   of any sort, so I had no idea how to take care of them.

01:57:35   So I asked some friends and did some research

01:57:37   on the internet and asked the company who made it,

01:57:38   like asked, did their support thing,

01:57:40   and basically the recommended thing that they said

01:57:43   was to basically drain the engine, like to run it dry.

01:57:47   So I had to start it up once in April to do this,

01:57:52   to just run it dry from the little bit of gas

01:57:54   that they delivered it with.

01:57:55   took me a very long time to figure out how to start it up,

01:57:57   even though it has electric start, delightful.

01:57:59   (laughing)

01:58:00   - That's what your Tesla has done to you,

01:58:01   you don't even know how to start

01:58:02   an internal combustion engine anymore.

01:58:04   - Exactly, and you know, it has like, you know,

01:58:07   like the choke squishy thing,

01:58:09   and there's all sorts of stuff on there,

01:58:11   and I'm like, I don't know how to do this.

01:58:13   - The squishy thing, that is a technical term for that.

01:58:15   - Yeah, yeah, and so then that was like April,

01:58:19   and I put it away all summer,

01:58:21   and then so just like two weeks ago, or last week,

01:58:23   I had to finally take it out again.

01:58:25   Because everyone says you should like start it up,

01:58:27   make sure it starts, you know,

01:58:28   gas it up before the big snowstorm,

01:58:30   which, okay, that makes sense.

01:58:31   - I never do that.

01:58:32   I totally know you're supposed to and they're right.

01:58:35   I just, I thought about that earlier,

01:58:37   like at the same time you were probably thinking about it,

01:58:39   I had that same thought and I said, you know what,

01:58:41   I've never done that before

01:58:42   and I'm probably not gonna do it again.

01:58:44   - Yeah, so you know, I put gas in it

01:58:46   and of course because A, I'm me

01:58:50   and B, I don't want to deal with it,

01:58:52   I'm using the expensive special gas

01:58:55   that comes in brook spray sized cans

01:58:58   that has the pre-mixed treatments and everything,

01:59:01   so it's optimized for this engine.

01:59:03   So basically, this way I don't have to use

01:59:04   any kind of preserver and it's stable,

01:59:07   and you could order it by mail for some reason.

01:59:10   I don't know how that's legal, but you can.

01:59:13   Anyway, so I put in a little bit of my fancy gas,

01:59:19   and I wish I was video recording myself

01:59:24   trying to start this up again,

01:59:25   'cause of course I completely forgot the procedure.

01:59:27   And also of course I was too lazy

01:59:29   to go find the instruction book.

01:59:31   - And Casey wasn't there to read it for you.

01:59:33   - Exactly. - Exactly, exactly.

01:59:35   I did eventually get, well Casey would have needed it

01:59:37   'cause you're like a real person

01:59:38   who's operated gas things before.

01:59:39   But I'm not one of these people.

01:59:41   - Was it really any more complicated than

01:59:45   flipping a switch, pumping a few things,

01:59:47   and hitting the starter,

01:59:48   and maybe moving a choke lever,

01:59:49   was there really more to it?

01:59:51   Am I not grasping the full complexity of this?

01:59:54   - I think that ended up being,

01:59:55   okay, so somehow I got it started eventually.

01:59:58   I pushed a bunch of things and turned a bunch of things

02:00:00   and twisted a bunch of things and pulled some things

02:00:01   and eventually it worked.

02:00:03   And then eventually I'm like,

02:00:04   why is it sputtering so much?

02:00:05   Oh, I gotta turn this thing from start to go.

02:00:07   So yeah, it was, I wish you were there to laugh at me

02:00:13   during this process.

02:00:14   - I wish I was there to laugh at you.

02:00:15   - You should have a friendly neighbor to come over

02:00:17   to put you out of your misery?

02:00:19   You're right, the fact that it had an electrical starter

02:00:21   really dampens the comedy effect

02:00:24   because if it had a pull start,

02:00:25   that would have been way more fun to watch you do.

02:00:27   - Well, I couldn't get the electric start to work.

02:00:31   But I eventually pulled it,

02:00:33   and it started up, upon pulling it,

02:00:35   with such ease, and I don't know if that's 'cause it's new,

02:00:39   or because maybe the electric start

02:00:41   like assisted it upon pulling it.

02:00:43   'Cause when I was trying to,

02:00:44   they'll start, like there's a button next

02:00:46   where the plug goes in, it's unlabeled.

02:00:47   And I plugged it in and I pushed it

02:00:49   and it just did, like nothing happened, no response at all.

02:00:51   So I don't know if the electric start is broken

02:00:54   or if I just, I need to read the manual, but.

02:00:57   - Story of your life.

02:00:58   - But I did end up pull starting it and it was super easy.

02:01:01   Like I was picturing like, you know,

02:01:02   when you see somebody like trying to pull

02:01:04   from a really old lawnmower and they're like,

02:01:06   pulling like with all their bodily might and.

02:01:09   - No, it's brand new and they have like, you know,

02:01:12   modern things are way easier to pull start

02:01:15   than they used to be, first of all.

02:01:16   Second of all, this thing is brand new.

02:01:17   Of course it better be firing

02:01:19   before you even get through the first pull.

02:01:21   - It's, yeah, I mean, I had to pull once,

02:01:23   and I was like, oh, now it's going, like, okay.

02:01:26   So yeah, I did eventually figure this out.

02:01:28   It was comical.

02:01:29   I do wish you guys were there,

02:01:31   'cause you would have had a ball making fun of me,

02:01:34   and I do wish it was on video,

02:01:35   but unfortunately I was not planning ahead.

02:01:38   - You all have fun making fun of me when,

02:01:41   this will be the year that my snowblower,

02:01:42   my snowboarder that's what 16 years old or whatever that I do zero maintenance on that

02:01:47   should have died like a decade ago. This will be the year that it dies.

02:01:50   Yeah, it's also your Mac Pro. Yeah, it's older than my Mac Pro and I take

02:01:53   less good care of it. And every year I think this is this is going to be the year this

02:01:57   thing doesn't start and every year it's like nope still going but we'll see. Yeah. And

02:02:02   I always wait until like there's four feet of snow in front of my garage. That's when

02:02:06   I that's when I say well I wonder if this thing's gonna start this year. Never. I don't

02:02:11   started ahead of time.

02:02:12   I know it's like I do, the only preparation I do

02:02:14   is I usually make sure I have fuel for it.

02:02:15   I do that because you can't really get out to get fuel

02:02:18   when there's four feet of snow.

02:02:20   - You can have fancy gas delivered.

02:02:22   - Yeah, this is not fancy gas.

02:02:23   This is the opposite, whatever the opposite of fancy gases,

02:02:25   this is it.

02:02:26   - One of the main reasons I went with fancy gas

02:02:28   besides that I'm, you know, I didn't want to have to deal

02:02:30   with like stabilizers in the winter or in the summer

02:02:33   and also I don't think I'm gonna really use a lot of gas

02:02:36   in this so I, you know, I don't think it's gonna matter

02:02:37   really.

02:02:38   - But if you're gonna run it dry anyway

02:02:39   before you put it away, like, whatever.

02:02:42   - I wanted to be double sure, anyway.

02:02:44   But I was also like, one of the reasons also was like,

02:02:47   I don't like the idea of driving to a gas station

02:02:50   in my Tesla and filling up a gas can

02:02:52   and putting it in the back.

02:02:53   - That's the best, that's the best.

02:02:55   When people ask you questions about it,

02:02:56   you're like, this car is so fuel efficient,

02:02:58   all I need is this one gallon.

02:02:59   (laughing)

02:03:01   There's no tanks, like no, you don't need a tank

02:03:02   with a Tesla, you just fill up a little tub,

02:03:04   this will last me all week.

02:03:06   People will totally believe you.

02:03:08   I actually saw a Model X today, which I see Model Ss

02:03:12   reasonably often in Richmond, but I saw a Model X today.

02:03:16   It was very surprising.

02:03:17   Still not sure if I like the look.

02:03:20   It's not-- - That's gross.

02:03:21   - It's not actively offensive to me,

02:03:24   but I don't think I'd terribly like it either.

02:03:27   - Yeah, the X, it looks a lot like a minivan.

02:03:29   It really does. (laughs)

02:03:31   - It's not like a minivan.

02:03:32   It looks like a crappy SUV crossover turd thing.

02:03:35   - That's a minivan.

02:03:37   No, a minivan is a minivan.

02:03:39   A minivan looks better than the Model X.

02:03:41   I like the minivan shape.

02:03:42   It's getting a more honest loaf of bread

02:03:44   for transporting kids than these things,

02:03:46   which are like, I'm a Jeep Cherokee

02:03:49   that's been squeezed out of somebody's butt.

02:03:51   Like, wow.

02:03:52   My word.

02:03:56   Oh, wow, that's like--

02:03:57   The closest I think I've come to ever liking one of those

02:03:59   is like some of the big Mercedes SUE-shaped things

02:04:04   are not embarrassing.

02:04:04   - Looking at a couple of the Land Rover ones

02:04:08   might have a reasonable shape

02:04:09   if their service details weren't that bad,

02:04:11   but the X is gross.

02:04:13   - I will say, X6, not bad.

02:04:16   - I don't like the one either, no.

02:04:17   - The X6, oh God, adjust your eyeballs, sir, no way.

02:04:22   - It's kinda like, it's kinda like TiE-iSt.

02:04:26   You know, the first seat, you're like, oh, that's weird.

02:04:29   But then you're like, okay, I kinda get it.

02:04:31   I kinda like, I don't, and I like to IST more.

02:04:34   You know, I don't think I would ever want an X6

02:04:37   for any reason, but if I were forced to drive one,

02:04:40   I'd be like, all right, yeah, I could deal with this.

02:04:44   - No, no, no, no, no, no.

02:04:46   Vetoed, application denied, no.

02:04:49   (door slams)