196: Roasting Your Own Beans


00:00:00   Anything we need to talk about? You want to talk politics for a while?

00:00:02   Oh my god.

00:00:03   [

00:00:09   Yeah, this is not really related to the Mac Pro and Apple's getting out of the display

00:00:14   business and all that business, but it's strangely connected. So I've got a PS4 Pro now, and

00:00:22   one of the features of the PS4 Pro is that it theoretically supports 4K for games that

00:00:27   are updated to support it and that actually do support it.

00:00:32   And I figure, since I'm keeping my old PS4 and I have a gaming monitor with it as well,

00:00:37   I needed a new monitor for the new one, because neither one of these is getting hooked up

00:00:41   to my TV for display burn-in reasons.

00:00:45   So when I was going to get a new monitor, I figured I should get a 4K one, because hey,

00:00:48   the PlayStation 4 Pro is supposed to be all 4K capable, so that's what I should do.

00:00:52   So I shopped around for a 4K monitor that supported HDR, which is another feature of

00:00:57   the PS4 Pro.

00:00:58   Actually, maybe they backported that to the plain old PS4, I don't remember.

00:01:02   Anyway, apparently it's impossible to find an HDR-capable 4K computer monitor.

00:01:07   You can find TVs, obviously, but I wasn't looking for a TV.

00:01:11   And also, the size inflation of TVs that happened maybe three years ago, four years ago, where

00:01:18   any decent TV is now like at least 55 inches.

00:01:22   I'm fearing that someday you won't be able to get one less than 65 inches.

00:01:25   Like the minimum size for a decent TV has gone up.

00:01:28   You'll have to move.

00:01:29   Yeah, you can't buy it yourself.

00:01:31   Can I get a 27 inch 4K TV with HDR?

00:01:33   The answer is no.

00:01:34   No you can't.

00:01:35   You want a 55 inch?

00:01:36   I've got one of those for you.

00:01:38   Anyway, no HDR, but I did want to get 4K.

00:01:42   So I shopped around a little bit.

00:01:43   I hate doing this because I don't...

00:01:45   There's like a million different products in the non-Apple world.

00:01:49   So much selection, it's overwhelming.

00:01:50   I ended up getting a ViewSonic, great product names, XG2700 4K display, which is really

00:02:01   nice.

00:02:02   I especially like the stand it came with.

00:02:04   It's like height adjustable, it was very sturdy.

00:02:07   The monitor itself was a little chunky and a little bit gamer-y looking.

00:02:10   It was black but with like a red stripe and these silly things.

00:02:13   So it wasn't that bad.

00:02:14   This is not only expensive, but you're whining about the LG display and the way that looks,

00:02:22   and this has frickin' red trim on it?

00:02:24   Are you serious, John Siracusa?

00:02:25   Those are racing stripes that make you go faster.

00:02:27   I mean, this is not my Mac, obviously.

00:02:29   Have you seen what the PlayStation 4 itself looks like?

00:02:32   This is hideous.

00:02:33   I don't care.

00:02:34   This is truly terrible.

00:02:36   The LG Ultrafine is, it is not a pretty monitor.

00:02:39   I'm not trying to say it's pretty, but it's positively understated compared to this atrocity.

00:02:44   This is not that I mean if you look at it

00:02:46   it's basically just

00:02:47   Inconsolately black around the display and all you can see when you're sitting in front of it is the two little red side things on

00:02:52   the stand and

00:02:54   You can't even see the bread stripe on the on the vertical thing because it gets covered up at the height

00:02:58   I had a monitor anyway. That's what I got oh, and it was all right all of these PC

00:03:03   Gaming monitors have they have like on-screen you know

00:03:07   Adjustments on the device itself that had nothing to do with the thing that's connected to it so on the device itself you can adjust

00:03:13   like brightness and contrast, but also a million other settings, some of which are strange,

00:03:19   through what you can imagine to be like the worst on-screen controls, you know? You know

00:03:22   when they put like grainy sort of bitmapped little menu thing and normally have like a

00:03:26   — the ViewSonic has like a one and two button, like the one brings up the menu, the two goes

00:03:30   into it, and then there's up and down arrows.

00:03:33   So bad.

00:03:34   It's a terrible interface. It's kind of like going back in time to like when televisions

00:03:38   first got on-screen displays. OSD they call them, on-screen display, which doesn't really

00:03:44   make any sense. Is that what it stands for, on-screen display? Anyway.

00:03:46   >> I believe that's right. >> It doesn't make any sense. Where else would

00:03:48   the display be? Off-screen display? >> This is real. I'm still looking at this

00:03:53   monitor. I mean, like, I should point out, like, I like many tastefully designed PC monitors.

00:04:00   I like ViewSonic. And ViewSonic, I have owned multiple ViewSonic monitors. They are really

00:04:05   good usually. I like red even. Red is one of my favorite colors for things to be in,

00:04:12   even though Trump ruined red hats forever. But I look at this monitor and I cannot even

00:04:16   imagine buying this thing and having this on my desk.

00:04:18   I could not agree more.

00:04:20   Just look at the monitor part of it. Not the stand, but just the monitor from the front.

00:04:24   It is literally a matte black rectangle with the word "EUSONIC" on the bottom. That's

00:04:28   pretty much as plain as you can get.

00:04:31   But you will see the stand, and if you're not seeing the red stripe on the back, your

00:04:34   monitor is probably too low. Well, I mean, I guess you can see a little tiny bit of it,

00:04:38   but you don't notice it. And like the stand, among stands, you don't know how deep this

00:04:43   thing goes. Go look at some of the stands of other PC and gaming monitors. Just do me

00:04:47   a favor, do me a favor, get a VESA arm and have that hold this up instead. Yeah, no,

00:04:52   I'm getting to the VESA arm, okay? We'll get there. Is it VESA? Not VESA? All these years.

00:04:58   I'm gonna say VESA and it's definitely a move file and you mispronounce everything, so.

00:05:02   I don't understand how you besmirch the 5K monitor as an atrocity that you would never

00:05:09   be able to use ever, and then you buy this piece of garbage.

00:05:15   Do you think I would ever connect this to my Mac?

00:05:17   What difference does it make?

00:05:19   Oh, it makes a difference.

00:05:20   I would never connect this to my Mac.

00:05:21   It doesn't even get to be on the same desk as my Mac.

00:05:23   I love that you have lower standards for the PC and gaming equipment.

00:05:27   Of course I do.

00:05:29   Not only of course I do, I don't disagree.

00:05:31   But you really have no choice.

00:05:33   You have to have – I have different standards anyway, but you have no choice.

00:05:36   There is no nice, tasteful PC hardware for the most part.

00:05:42   Even things like the HP Spectre are really – I see they're putting in an effort, but

00:05:46   it's not to my taste.

00:05:48   Anyway, let me continue my story here.

00:05:50   So I got this thing, and the adjustments on it are very strange.

00:05:54   I'm trying to get it sort of calibrated to something reasonable, but they have all sorts

00:05:58   of settings, most of which fly in the face of my television snob sensibilities, because

00:06:05   the television you want to adjust, like you're trying, there is a goal, there is like, you

00:06:10   can get reference images and say it should look like this, you know, because television

00:06:13   content is produced with the expectation that here is the color range of your display, here is the

00:06:18   brightness behavior, all sorts of other things like that. Whereas for a gaming monitor specifically,

00:06:26   Games are not produced with any sort of reference viewing environment, right?

00:06:32   Because there is no real standard for that. Games are produced, I don't know how they

00:06:37   decide like how dark should the textures be and you know, what color range should we use?

00:06:41   I really don't know what they use, but I can tell you that everybody's PC monitors are

00:06:46   not calibrated like quote unquote correctly and are all over the map and there is a setting that

00:06:51   seems to be pervasive on all PC monitors, especially with the gaming band they call

00:06:55   "black stabilization." Have you ever even heard of that?

00:06:57   >> MATT PORTER, MD No.

00:06:58   >> JEREMY CHANIN, MD What—why is black changing?

00:07:01   >> MATT PORTER, MD Yeah, so in games, a lot of games are made where there'll be dark

00:07:06   sections where you go, like, in a cave or something. But if you're playing a game,

00:07:09   especially a competitive game, you don't actually want to, quote-unquote,

00:07:14   "faithfully" reproduce the blacks because you won't be able to see anything.

00:07:18   And it is an advantage for you instead to have the monitor so that it kind of, I'm assuming

00:07:21   what it's doing is like squashing everything down.

00:07:23   It's like, oh, I can see the subtle difference between 100% black and 99% black and 98% black

00:07:29   in this cave.

00:07:30   It's important for me to see that so I can pick out the edges of the cave wall and find

00:07:34   where the enemies are or whatever.

00:07:36   Like if you've ever seen anyone do like competitive first person shooters in PC gaming, they're

00:07:41   not trying to get visual fidelity as if it's a movie or television show.

00:07:45   What they're trying to do is, can I see everything clearly?

00:07:49   So a lot of the monitors have settings that make the picture worse, like by reducing the

00:07:55   dynamic range and making areas that would be black less black, which looks bad.

00:08:01   It's like a bad black level on your TV.

00:08:03   And also all the settings that are involved like response time, because that's the other

00:08:06   big thing.

00:08:07   A lot of gamers use TN panels, which nobody uses anymore because they look terrible, the

00:08:10   viewing angles are terrible, but they have better response time.

00:08:14   I've never gone that far.

00:08:15   I couldn't get a TN display, 'cause that's like,

00:08:17   I mean, it's like going back to the MacBook Air.

00:08:19   It's like, no.

00:08:20   - I mean, you aren't an animal.

00:08:21   - Right, so I got an IPS display,

00:08:23   which it has like a five times worse response time,

00:08:26   but even on these displays,

00:08:27   there's a way you can change the response time

00:08:29   to be as good as it can be,

00:08:32   doing what I assume is sacrificing visual quality.

00:08:35   I'm trying to strike the right balance

00:08:37   between don't look terrible monitor,

00:08:39   but also I do feel there's a benefit

00:08:42   to not having everything be black

00:08:44   when I'm doing the raid, one of the raids in Destiny,

00:08:46   there are a lot of dark areas,

00:08:48   and if I'm doing some jumping puzzle in the dark

00:08:50   to try to do something, I like, you know,

00:08:52   I do have it adjusted, quote unquote, wrong,

00:08:54   so I can, so the games play better.

00:08:57   So anyway, I had a lot of trouble

00:08:59   trying to get the ViewSonic setup that way,

00:09:00   but the real problem was that for a while,

00:09:02   my PlayStation 4 Pro did not show me a 4K output option,

00:09:06   it would just output 1080.

00:09:08   I'm like, well, that's not what I want,

00:09:09   I need you to output 4K.

00:09:10   So I did a bunch of Googling,

00:09:12   The PlayStation says, you know, "Count out port 4K," and it would say, "HDCP 2.2 not

00:09:18   available."

00:09:19   I don't know if you guys are familiar with HDCP, but it's another one of those stupid

00:09:22   things that makes you a life force for no good reason.

00:09:25   And this monitor apparently predates HDCP 2.2.

00:09:27   It only supports, like, I forget what the earlier standard is, maybe 1.1 or 1.4.

00:09:32   I don't know.

00:09:33   Anyway, I had a "HDMI 2.0" cable and everything was good, but it didn't work with it, and

00:09:38   I did some Googling, and you find people asking if you saw an icon Twitter, "Hey, does this

00:09:41   monitor support HTTP 2.2?" They say, "Sorry, no." So I'm like, "Oh, I'm going to have to

00:09:46   return this thing and get a different monitor." Now it turns out you can get it to games to

00:09:52   display 4K on this. It has a bunch of HDMI ports in the back and like so many televisions

00:09:56   and monitors before, only one of the ports is like the good one. So once I move the cable

00:10:02   to the good port, the one and only good port, which isn't labeled with anything that says,

00:10:05   "Hey, this is the only one that does HDMI 2.0. Hey, this is the only one that does 4K."

00:10:10   turns out there's only one that does it. So I could display games in 4k on this, but I still

00:10:15   wanted to get another monitor because this one still doesn't support HTTP 2.2, which probably

00:10:20   isn't a factor for playing games, but it does mean that like Netflix and other stuff like that that

00:10:23   wants to display video content won't do it on 4k because this doesn't do the stupid intellectual

00:10:28   property copy protection dance just the right way for stupid reasons. So I returned this one

00:10:36   in grand Marco fashion.

00:10:38   Although this was just plain old my fault of like,

00:10:40   I didn't even think to look for HTTP 2.0.

00:10:42   I'm like, I just need a gaming monitor.

00:10:44   This is one of those, it has HDMI input.

00:10:46   I should be good to go.

00:10:47   - And by the way, I don't usually return things.

00:10:49   Usually I sell them.

00:10:50   - I thought about selling this

00:10:52   'cause like the stupid restocking fee on this

00:10:54   was gonna be a lot of money.

00:10:55   I'm like, well, if I can sell it

00:10:56   for more than the restocking fee, then.

00:10:58   - Oh, if there's a restocking fee, I'll return it for sure.

00:11:00   It's just an issue of like, I don't wanna like,

00:11:03   like I feel bad returning things

00:11:04   when I know someone else is going to be eating the cost.

00:11:06   But if I'm definitely eating the cost, then I won't feel bad about that anymore.

00:11:10   Yeah, I was just hoping I-- if I sold it to someone else, like a brand new monitor that

00:11:13   had like barely even touched the-- the little plastic films were still on the thing, you

00:11:17   know, the peely plastic stuff that protects it.

00:11:19   That was still on it.

00:11:20   So this was brand new, but if I could have sold it for somebody for like maybe $80 less

00:11:25   than I paid for it, then I still would have come out ahead.

00:11:29   Anyway, so I returned that one.

00:11:31   And in its place I got an LG 4K display.

00:11:36   I don't have an LG 5K display.

00:11:38   I now have an LG 4K display.

00:11:40   Does it have that weird little head with the camera in it?

00:11:43   It is not a 5 head.

00:11:45   Take a look at it.

00:11:46   Wait, what model is it?

00:11:48   The ridiculous thing.

00:11:49   I just put the link in the show notes.

00:11:50   It is not a 5 head.

00:11:52   It is more tame looking.

00:11:55   Whoa, there's no edge.

00:11:57   There is.

00:11:58   It's just a, it's very thin.

00:11:59   But you know, so you notice this one is smaller overall.

00:12:03   It comes in a very small box, as Casey noted.

00:12:05   The frame around it is very small.

00:12:08   The panel is probably the same panel that's in like every LG 27-inch 4K display that you

00:12:12   can get right now, because they sell a whole bunch of them with different letter suffixes

00:12:15   on them.

00:12:16   The little stand that it's on is where the ViewSonic kicks its butt.

00:12:20   Because the ViewSonic stand was big, chunky, height adjustable, and red, and stable, right?

00:12:28   In this monitor, if you take your finger and put it under the corner and tap upwards, the

00:12:32   monitor bobbles its little bobblehead like it's one of those little hula dolls that you

00:12:35   put on a dashboard or one of those bobblehead figures, right?

00:12:38   It is the worst designed stand.

00:12:40   It just connects with two screws that you screw in yourself to this little tiny thing

00:12:44   in the back of it.

00:12:46   Terrible stand.

00:12:47   It's ugly, too.

00:12:48   I think that little semicircular thing is ugly.

00:12:49   It takes up more room on your desk width-wise than that square thing that the ViewSonic

00:12:53   had.

00:12:54   stripe, but it doesn't perform adequately the function of keeping the monitor still.

00:12:58   So if I bump my desk with my knee while I'm playing, I gotta watch a stupid bobblehead

00:13:02   bobble in front of me.

00:13:03   Now it does have a VESA mount on the back, and so I said, "Alright, well whatever, who

00:13:07   cares about that stand, it's got the 100mm VESA mount on the back of the thing."

00:13:11   All I have to do is find a sturdy VESA mount, get rid of that stupid foot, and use that.

00:13:18   But I don't want an arm, because I don't want to clamp it to my desk, because I have glass

00:13:22   on top of my desk and I don't want to clamp anything to it on my desk.

00:13:25   I just don't want an arm.

00:13:27   There's too much stuff going on back there.

00:13:28   I just want a stand.

00:13:30   And every single VESA stand I could find was uglier than this foot.

00:13:33   Yeah, you're not going to have a good time there.

00:13:37   They're terrible.

00:13:38   Like, the metal ones look like giant metal horseshoes.

00:13:40   The plastic ones look just as bad as this.

00:13:44   So I'm just going to, I'm just not hitting my desk and being careful.

00:13:49   And by the way, the on-screen controls for this one are better than the ViewSonic, but

00:13:51   still pretty grim.

00:13:52   This one has a tiny little joystick under the middle that you move around.

00:13:56   It's like kind of like a five-way switch, you know, you get up, down, left, right, and

00:13:58   press in.

00:13:59   But boy, what a terrible interface.

00:14:02   And because it's the bottom, and you're wiggling a joystick that's like pointing down, but

00:14:06   you're trying to move controls on the screen that are going, you know, in a different plane

00:14:11   up, down, left, and right.

00:14:13   Anyway, I think this one looks a little bit better than the ViewSonic's panel quality-wise.

00:14:19   Or maybe it's just that I have had more time to tweak it because the adjustments are not

00:14:22   so painful to use in the menu, but it has all the same crap, including a response time

00:14:27   adjustment in which the value that you want is high.

00:14:30   It's like, I don't want high response time, but yet because of the way they name these

00:14:34   features and probably the poor translation of the options, I had to look it up in the

00:14:37   manual and say, "Which one do I want for the thing where the response time number is a

00:14:41   lower number of milliseconds?

00:14:43   Oh, high.

00:14:44   That makes sense."

00:14:45   Why would you ever want it to be slower?

00:14:47   I think it decreases the quality of the display.

00:14:50   It decreases the-- I don't know, something.

00:14:51   I'm assuming the color quality or something.

00:14:53   It's doing less processing on the display.

00:14:55   And probably it's trying to not put

00:15:00   as much computation between the signal and the screen.

00:15:03   The same thing with-- there's like a sharpness thing that'll

00:15:05   apply a sharpness filter.

00:15:06   And especially when playing games in 1080,

00:15:08   like Destiny is still just 1080, the sharpness filter

00:15:11   does help make the text look better,

00:15:13   but it adds processing overhead.

00:15:14   So if you really want the best response time,

00:15:16   that the best option is to turn the sharpness all the way down, which is what I've done.

00:15:20   Anyway, I was able to adjust this to get it to look a little bit better to my eyes than

00:15:23   the ViewSonic, and now I'm just patiently waiting for 4K games to come out.

00:15:27   So I do not have this exact same monitor, I was mistaken.

00:15:31   For a couple different reasons, one, I'm pretty sure it's a different model.

00:15:35   So you got the UD68-P, I got the UD58-B, and the bezel on mine is…

00:15:46   considerably larger than the bezel on yours. Also, you chose poorly if this is ever going

00:15:52   to get connected to a computer. If you're ever going to connect it to a computer, 4K

00:15:57   is not enough DPI for 27 inches. You should have gotten 5K.

00:16:01   Yeah, no, I'm never connecting this to a computer. What computer would I connect this to? My

00:16:04   gaming PC? Well, you could connect it to your piece of

00:16:08   garbage Mac in theory and then actually have a retina Mac.

00:16:11   No, I would—this also is never going to be connected to a Mac.

00:16:15   I love that all of this trouble you're going through, I mean this is all like this crazy

00:16:20   stuff you're going through and having this whole separate desk set up that of course

00:16:23   has one near your Mac and everything and having this PC monitor, all this and yet you won't

00:16:29   build a gaming PC.

00:16:30   Like you're basically doing, you're putting in all the effort that it would take to have

00:16:34   a gaming PC.

00:16:35   No way, the Playstation is way less effort than a gaming PC, way less effort than a gaming

00:16:40   PC.

00:16:41   I mean once you get into all this crazy monitor twiddling that you're doing, I mean really

00:16:44   like you might like why is there not a gaming PC on this second second to your desk that

00:16:49   you have gaming PC would not do there's no destiny for PC.

00:16:53   Hello Destiny 2 may be coming for PC fans.

00:16:55   But anyway there's no destiny for PC.

00:16:57   There's no West Guardian for PC.

00:16:59   There's no Uncharted 4 for PC.

00:17:01   Like I need to have this.

00:17:03   This is the thing that I need.

00:17:04   Gaming PC does not replace this in any possible especially since the only thing I do with

00:17:08   my consoles is play like a handful of games that are essentially console exclusives even

00:17:12   on my Nintendo consoles.

00:17:13   There's no gaming PC that's going to play the next Zelda game, right?

00:17:17   That's what I buy these things for.

00:17:18   So I would have to have a gaming PC in addition to this, and there's no room for it, and it's

00:17:22   way more headache than this.

00:17:24   You know, I didn't mind the 4K thing, because I was excited to get a 4K monitor and to play

00:17:28   games at that resolution.

00:17:29   I do have a few games that have had updates that came out, which really just makes things

00:17:33   a little bit sharper, because it's not like they redid all the textures for the most part.

00:17:36   I think Overwatch is 4K now, I haven't looked at that yet, but anyway, there's a bunch of

00:17:41   there and I haven't, I don't have the PlayStation VR yet but I'm considering getting that. But no,

00:17:47   I'm pretty happy with the setup. Oh, I'm about the PS4 Pro. The only complaint I have about it,

00:17:52   and I realize I should probably just complain to Sony and get this fixed, the one controller

00:17:58   that the PS4 Pro came with, the left analog stick, if you look at it, like from the side,

00:18:03   is tilted in the neutral position ever so slightly. And I'm not having any of that, so.

00:18:08   I'm using my old DualShock because they didn't change the controller or anything, they just changed it like the buttons are now like ugly gray instead of black.

00:18:17   And I think maybe the triggers might be a little bit better.

00:18:19   But anyway, I'm gonna complain to Sony and say, "Hey look, I took this thing out of the box, I never touched it.

00:18:23   In the neutral position, all of these analog sticks should be straight up and down, this one is tilted to give me a new thing."

00:18:29   And I'm sure Sony will be happy to do that for me.

00:18:33   Oh, I'm sure.

00:18:34   On the one side, Jon, I truly, genuinely admire how perceptive you are and how you can notice these little things.

00:18:43   Oh, you would notice it. It's not like, "Oh, this is obscure. I'd only notice if I took it, like, out of level or a plumb bob."

00:18:49   You'd notice it with your eyeballs. It is not subtle.

00:18:52   But with that said, I am so glad that I am, at worst, mildly critical.

00:18:59   And not hypercritical like you are.

00:19:02   - This whole conversation, I'm sitting here thinking,

00:19:05   thank God this is one area I don't really care about.

00:19:08   Like, I don't care about gaming really at all.

00:19:11   I'd like to, but I don't.

00:19:12   I barely care about TVs.

00:19:15   I barely care about TV adjustments

00:19:17   and picture quality adjustments and everything.

00:19:19   I am just, I certainly don't care about analog sticks

00:19:22   being slightly tilted from neutral.

00:19:24   I am just so happy that, like,

00:19:26   there are so many areas that I care way too much about.

00:19:30   At least here's one that I don't.

00:19:32   - Yep.

00:19:33   - 'Cause I'm not carving my own analog sticks out of plastic.

00:19:36   That'd be the equivalent of you roasting your own beans.

00:19:38   - Hey, roasting your own beans is really not that hard,

00:19:41   and it's really good.

00:19:42   - I know, but I'm saying like,

00:19:44   it is one thing to be picky about the things that you buy,

00:19:46   but then at a certain point you say,

00:19:47   "There's nothing I can buy.

00:19:48   I must make it myself."

00:19:50   And that would be the equivalent

00:19:51   of me carving my own controllers

00:19:52   and like a controller assembly kit

00:19:54   and like making my own analog sticks

00:19:56   and like assembling it from pieces.

00:19:57   - You try to find good coffee on this half of the county.

00:20:00   I guarantee you can't find it.

00:20:02   There's no good controllers either, but I just accept what they sell me.

00:20:05   I just want it to be, like, you know, correct as, uh, when it comes out of the box, everything

00:20:09   should be straight.

00:20:10   If you could make your own perfect controller for $5 in 20 minutes, wouldn't you do it?

00:20:14   And then I have to drink it and it's gone and I gotta do it all over again?

00:20:17   Hence the analogy of breaking down.

00:20:19   Alright, so anyway, um, this monitor that you bought, Jon, is not HDR, is that correct?

00:20:25   No, it's not.

00:20:26   Isn't that one of the—because that's why you bought that god-awful red racing-striped

00:20:30   ViewSonic, was to get it.

00:20:31   No, none of them are.

00:20:32   No, you can't get as far as I remember.

00:20:35   There are none for sale.

00:20:36   There is no gaming monitor.

00:20:38   Like I said, you can get a TV with HDR.

00:20:39   You can get a 4K TV with HDR support for your PS4 Pro.

00:20:42   But as far as I was able to determine, there is no monitor, computer monitor that you can

00:20:47   buy as in a thing that's 27 inches and not 55 that you put on a desk that has HDR support.

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00:22:31   [Music]

00:22:33   Can you guys see the difference between wide color and not? Because maybe I've

00:22:41   just never really had a good example photo in like two screens next to each

00:22:46   other, but briefly before I gave up my 6s when I had—but I did have my 7, I held

00:22:52   the two of them side by side and damned if I could tell the difference. And I

00:22:55   don't know if it's just that my eyes are crappy, which they unequivocally are,

00:22:57   are, if I just don't appreciate it, which is possible, or is it just not that big a

00:23:03   deal if you're not like a designer?

00:23:05   Like Marco, for example, are you able to tell the difference when you just look at an arbitrary

00:23:09   photo on a wide color display versus a not wide color display?

00:23:16   Not yet.

00:23:17   I suspect as wide color displays become what I'm looking at every day, because like right

00:23:21   now I do most of my computing on a 2014 5K iMac, which does not have the high color display.

00:23:27   And so I now have it on my phone and on my iPad, but really I'm doing almost all of my, you know,

00:23:33   looking at things on my iMac. But it's not, it's not, it doesn't matter where you look at them,

00:23:38   it's the source material. So Casey, if you have something you look at, if you look at the same

00:23:42   picture that you took in a pre-wide color world, of course it's gonna look the same, because there's

00:23:48   no wide color information in it. You have to take the picture with a device capable of capturing

00:23:52   that. And then look at that same picture, one on like your iPhone 7 that you took it

00:23:57   on that took a wide color picture, and then the other one on that.

00:24:00   I thought that's what I did, but truth be told it was right when I first got the 7.

00:24:05   I wouldn't have put it past me to accidentally have taken like an old picture and said, "Oh,

00:24:08   I don't see anything." But, and I've seen like the sample images like where there's

00:24:13   like a big red blob and there's an R hidden in there that you wouldn't see unless it's

00:24:18   wide color, you know, and stuff like that. But nevertheless, on a regular picture, I've

00:24:24   not noticed a difference. And as a corollary question, is my two-year-old Micro Four Thirds,

00:24:30   I presume that's not wide color. Is that fair to say?

00:24:34   Most cameras have, well, most cameras don't have this option. Middle and high-end cameras

00:24:40   often will have an option to save the colors in Adobe RGB, maybe, instead of like, sRGB.

00:24:46   But I haven't looked too much into this.

00:24:48   As far as I know, I think that conversion happens after RAW anyway, so you might be

00:24:53   able to fix this with just a different RAW conversion process.

00:24:56   Jon, do you know about this?

00:24:58   I was going to say what you said.

00:25:00   There are other color profiles that are not called P3 that nevertheless have a larger

00:25:03   range than sRGB.

00:25:04   Yeah, like Adobe RGB is one of them.

00:25:06   Yeah, I don't know what the little envelopes look like in all of them.

00:25:09   And especially if you capture RAW, then that's all the information you're going to get.

00:25:13   And if you can pull more stuff out of it, I don't know.

00:25:15   I would like your best source for images with wide color is your iPhone 7 because it's yeah, you know

00:25:20   It's it's all sure I next it up and then there

00:25:23   If you I'm sure you've looked at Craig Hockenberry's page where he has a bunch of sample images

00:25:28   if you really can't tell the difference between the sample images because they're made to like emphasize the areas where

00:25:33   Humans can perceive the p3 color difference more that those really emphasize and those are kind of like artificial

00:25:40   but I have seen some other pictures where it's like

00:25:43   Just a picture of like a park like grass and a tree and some sky

00:25:46   And if you see them side by side like I do on my iPad Pro and I go to that page like alright

00:25:51   I mean, it's not it doesn't jump out at you

00:25:53   But if you look you're like you're like is this really the same picture. It's like yes

00:25:56   This is literally the same picture

00:25:58   Just one is s RGB and then the other one is showing the full white color and the full white color one

00:26:02   It's it's almost like

00:26:05   Contrast is turned down on the other one like there's not like the greens don't look as green like in this you know in the grass

00:26:11   type situation, like, "Oh, that tree looks a little bit more pastel-y and washed out."

00:26:15   Not a lot, but you have to see them side by side to see it. I don't think I could pick one out alone,

00:26:19   but if you literally show me the same picture in wide and not wide, you go, "Oh, the wide looks

00:26:23   a little better." That's about it. Okay. Okay, so I'm not entirely crazy then, because I'm looking

00:26:27   at this link on WebKit, and we'll put it in the show notes, and they have, like, and this is what

00:26:31   I was thinking of, they have the WebKit logo, which is like this big red blob that in sRGB,

00:26:36   you don't see the logo, and then if you go into P3, you can see the logo. Well, if you scroll down

00:26:41   on that same page, they have a yellow flower. And if you click—well, this is like what you were

00:26:45   saying, Jon—if you click between the sRGB-only and the P3, unequivocally I can tell that the P3

00:26:52   is much more vivid and looks more real. But if I were to look at either of these images,

00:26:58   like you said, Jon, without the other side-by-side, unlike, say, a retina screen versus a non-retina

00:27:04   Retina screen were just unbelievably obvious.

00:27:08   With these, I don't think I would notice the difference

00:27:10   unless they're side by side.

00:27:11   - I mean, that's how I am with most of these, too.

00:27:13   You know, like the example things, if I look at it

00:27:15   like on my iPad Pro, which is currently my biggest

00:27:18   P3 screen, these pictures look great, sure.

00:27:21   Like the big orangey sunsets, like yeah,

00:27:24   they do look a little more saturated

00:27:25   in those like orangey reddish tones,

00:27:28   but you can look at a non-retina screen

00:27:30   or a non-retina image or asset on a webpage

00:27:33   on a retina screen, and you can tell that difference

00:27:35   immediately, the very first thing you see

00:27:38   that is non-retina, after you're accustomed to retina,

00:27:41   you notice that immediately.

00:27:42   Whereas if I am scrolling through a webpage

00:27:45   and I see a picture of an orangey sunset that is not P3,

00:27:48   after I'm used to P3, I don't think I will notice

00:27:51   'cause it could just look like it wasn't as saturated

00:27:53   of a picture as it could have been.

00:27:54   And so it's not, you know, it's a way smaller advance

00:27:59   for everyday casual observing and for most people.

00:28:03   It's nice to have, I'm glad they're doing it.

00:28:05   And it's especially nice if you actually shoot

00:28:08   a lot of pictures of orangy sunsets and things.

00:28:11   But it's a very, in general use,

00:28:14   it's the kind of thing you can very easily forget

00:28:16   that you even have.

00:28:17   - Okay, that was my experience as well.

00:28:19   And I was curious because I feel like,

00:28:21   and maybe it's just because I follow people

00:28:23   like Hockenberry and Mark Edwards,

00:28:24   and they're really revved up about it.

00:28:26   But to me, I was like, man, I barely see the difference.

00:28:29   And I'm glad to hear that that's not necessarily unusual.

00:28:32   Two more things on the monitors. First, Casey, when you go back to work, you should tap the

00:28:36   underside of one of the corners of your monitor and see if you've got a bobble head too, because

00:28:39   I think you have the same. Oh, I definitely do. Oh yeah.

00:28:41   Yeah. That's like, what a bad job. Like, the stand has one simple function. Just put the monitor up

00:28:46   off the desk, off the ground, and keep it still. And it fails at that thing. The other thing is,

00:28:51   the one thing, even though this LG monitor is, you know, there's not much to it. Like,

00:28:54   it is just black everywhere. It's not matte. It's not shiny. Doesn't have much of a frame around it.

00:28:59   It's not a five head.

00:29:01   The part on the bottom is the biggest part.

00:29:03   So like it's proportion-- the LG logo is small and subtle.

00:29:05   But if you go to that Amazon page for my thing and do the little zoomy thing, you can zoom

00:29:10   in and see the LG logo, right?

00:29:12   Move over to the right from the LG logo.

00:29:14   What do you see there lurking in the corner?

00:29:17   Because this is a PC product, it's just got to be ugly in some stupid way.

00:29:20   What do you see there?

00:29:21   This stupid Energy Star.

00:29:23   And it's small.

00:29:24   It's not a big Energy Star badge.

00:29:26   And it's black and white.

00:29:27   Like it's not colored and weird.

00:29:29   But it's like the whole front of this thing has nothing on it.

00:29:32   I will accept the LG logo.

00:29:34   It is small and tasteful and centered.

00:29:36   Why the hell is it an energy processor?

00:29:37   And so I'm like, I'm just going to peel that sticker off.

00:29:39   But it's one of those stickers where I'm going to have to think on it for a while because

00:29:44   it is clearly not one of those ones that comes off easy.

00:29:46   You know, the ones that are like made to come off.

00:29:48   Like the metal one?

00:29:49   Oh, it's not metal.

00:29:51   It's not plastic.

00:29:52   Like here's the math I have to do.

00:29:53   Like I know I could get it off.

00:29:56   But after I get it off, what's left underneath the square where it used to be?

00:30:01   Well that looked worse than the sticker.

00:30:02   Because the sticker, for all its ugliness, looks like a sticker.

00:30:06   It's the Energy Star logo.

00:30:07   If I peel it off and there's a bunch of like sticky crap or I damage the plastic underneath

00:30:11   it, but it's all just cheap plastic.

00:30:13   This is not an aluminum Apple display or anything, right?

00:30:16   If I damage it somehow, or get sticky stuff in there that I somehow can't get off with

00:30:20   careful application of SkinSoSoft on it, which by the way, that's a secret for all you out

00:30:26   if you get sticky crap from stickers on them. One of the many things that will remove it,

00:30:29   I know there are many products, but one of the ones that I've used for years is Avon's

00:30:33   Skin So Soft, which I think was supposed to be a thing that softens your skin. The only

00:30:36   thing I've ever used it for is a take-off sticker scum. And it's got a pleasant odor.

00:30:41   Oh my god. Why are we-- I love the extent to which we will avoid talking about the Microsoft

00:30:47   Surface Studio. No, we'll get there. We'll get there. Anyway, Energy Star sticker, it's,

00:30:54   you know, it's just got to be ugly in some way. And like I said, I don't like that semi-circular

00:30:59   horseshoe stand. I don't know who thought that was nice, but it's not.

00:31:02   So that Energy Star sticker that on your monitors on the bottom right, I have what appeared

00:31:07   to be an identical one, but if you look at the stand, and you know how it's kind of tilted

00:31:12   at a sort of, not a 45 degree angle, but like a 30 degree angle maybe? Well, mine was all

00:31:18   the way on the left on that stand, and I let it sit for a week or two before I even noticed

00:31:22   And then I was like, oh, this is crap.

00:31:23   And you know what I did?

00:31:24   I immediately ripped it off

00:31:25   because I don't worry about things like you do.

00:31:28   And there was no residue.

00:31:29   Or if there was residue,

00:31:30   I like rubbed at it with my thumb for a second.

00:31:33   - You don't know if there's residue.

00:31:34   You probably just that.

00:31:35   I don't even see it in the Amazon picture of your monitor.

00:31:37   I don't see the Energy Star sticker anywhere on it.

00:31:40   - You're right.

00:31:41   I don't see it either, but it was there for sure.

00:31:43   - Yeah, so anyway, I might make a run

00:31:45   of that sticker eventually.

00:31:47   - Just rip it off, Jon.

00:31:49   It's like a band-aid, just rip it off.

00:31:51   Speaking of Windows stuff, we got a series of tweets from Jordan who is nerdiophage on

00:31:59   Twitter.

00:32:01   And he tweeted five things, I'll read them in series.

00:32:04   He says, "I spent a week with a MacBook Pro escape after two solid decades of Windows

00:32:09   use.

00:32:10   I was of the opinion that Marco's unabashed dislike of the OS of Windows was equal parts

00:32:15   adoptive culture/fanboyism/showmanship.

00:32:19   I stand corrected and a little bit humbled.

00:32:22   The Windows path from Neophyte to Power User is shaped by registry edits, decoder rings,

00:32:27   and secret knocks, which is arduous.

00:32:29   Mac OS, by comparison, feels inviting, friendly, and intuitive, like a late-night conversation

00:32:35   at a dinner party with good friends.

00:32:36   So TL;DR, this is still Jordan, Mac OS, holy crap, I get it.

00:32:42   Transition cost will be very high, but seriously considering it.

00:32:45   And this echoes my experience in 2008 of switching from Windows to OS X at the time.

00:32:51   There were two weeks where I doubted my life and thought I'd made a terrible, awful, horrible

00:32:55   choice and then I'd never look back.

00:32:58   I'm not saying that Jordan's experience is true for everyone, because now we're going

00:33:01   to have all the Windows apologists writing in telling us how Windows is good and we're

00:33:04   a bunch of jerks and blah blah blah.

00:33:06   But--

00:33:07   Do they still really listen to us?

00:33:08   Some do, because we still get emails.

00:33:11   I'm not saying that this is true for everyone, I'm not saying Windows isn't better in some

00:33:14   way or another, but what I am saying is that we are not the only ones that seem to think

00:33:20   that there's a better way. So, just thought I'd share those series of tweets from Jordan,

00:33:24   so thank you Jordan for writing us. We had an interesting conversation in Slack, Marco,

00:33:30   and I'd like to air a grievance. Let's back up to circa January, maybe December, so almost

00:33:39   year ago now. And the two of you, but my recollection was that it was mostly Marco, were saying,

00:33:46   "You know what, Casey? You should never put personal crap on your work laptop. You should

00:33:53   really have a nice powerful machine for home use. You probably shouldn't be ignoring Aaron

00:33:59   and using your laptop while you're sitting next door on the couch. You know what you

00:34:02   need? You need an iMac. I've tried the laptop dance, Casey. It's no good. It's no good,

00:34:07   man, get the iMac. Think about that 27 inch beautiful 5K display with wide color, blah

00:34:12   blah blah blah blah. I'm telling you it's the way to go.

00:34:16   This is, there are some, I have some nitpicks with your summary already, but go ahead.

00:34:20   But then fast forward to, I don't know, a few days ago, when Marco was talking in Slack,

00:34:26   that private place that we really shouldn't bring up publicly, but here I am because I'm

00:34:29   annoyed, Marco is talking in Slack and saying, "Hmm, you know what, maybe I'll get a new

00:34:36   MacBook Pro and a 5K display and I'll be back to a one machine man again and I won't even

00:34:42   have to have a stupid desktop anymore.

00:34:45   That's not, okay.

00:34:47   Okay.

00:34:48   So here's what I said.

00:34:51   So basically looking at performance of everything and figuring a potential and maybe even likely

00:34:59   future that does not include the Mac Pro existing and also includes standalone 5K Retina displays

00:35:06   that can plug into laptops that have,

00:35:09   not matching, but maybe 90% of the performance of iMacs,

00:35:15   or 80% of the performance of iMacs.

00:35:19   I always say the reason I buy the 15 inch laptops

00:35:22   is because when I'm traveling,

00:35:25   I either need almost nothing,

00:35:27   in which case it doesn't matter what I have,

00:35:29   and the laptop's mainly there to type emails faster,

00:35:32   or to browse Twitter,

00:35:33   or I'm doing serious work,

00:35:36   whether it's Xcode or Lightroom photo raw importing

00:35:40   and stuff and editing.

00:35:41   Either way, usually when I use a laptop during travel,

00:35:46   I want a lot of screen space and I want a lot of horsepower.

00:35:50   I also now have an iMac as my main computer.

00:35:54   And looking at the specs of these computers these days,

00:35:58   comparing the new MacBook Pros with LG 5K display,

00:36:04   assuming it's good, which we don't actually know yet,

00:36:06   but we'll assume it's good, 'cause it probably is.

00:36:08   Comparing that against the iMac,

00:36:11   basically I am maintaining and upgrading

00:36:14   and paying for two different computers

00:36:17   with overall fairly similar hardware

00:36:20   and fairly similar performance.

00:36:23   And so I thought, you know what I probably should do,

00:36:27   but won't, and I bolded, won't,

00:36:30   but I said what I probably should do

00:36:33   is stop having two similarly spec'd Macs

00:36:37   that I pay for and maintain and everything,

00:36:41   or just have a top of the line 15 inch MacBook Pro

00:36:45   that I use, like many people do,

00:36:47   in clam shell mode, on my desk most of the time,

00:36:51   but then when I travel I can just take that with me

00:36:53   and have all the power of this maxed out computer with me.

00:36:56   That is what I should do.

00:36:59   It is not what I'm doing.

00:37:01   And maybe in the future I will do that.

00:37:04   You know me, I always change everything up

00:37:06   'cause I'm never happy.

00:37:07   So maybe in the future I will do that.

00:37:10   I think I really wanna wait and see what happens

00:37:12   with the Mac Pro next year first.

00:37:14   If it turns out the Mac Pro is really dead

00:37:16   and that the best we can ever hope for on desktops

00:37:19   is iMac hardware that's 10 or 20% faster

00:37:22   than the MacBook Pros of the day,

00:37:24   then that might make a lot of sense actually for me.

00:37:27   But I really-- - You won't be able

00:37:28   to handle the fan noise, I guarantee it.

00:37:30   Can you just think of that--

00:37:31   - The iMac also has fan noise, that's the problem.

00:37:33   - But not as loud as a 15 inch, no way.

00:37:35   - Well, so again, I wanna see the new 15 inches first,

00:37:38   I wanna have some experience with them hopefully

00:37:40   to see how are these machines.

00:37:43   They really did reduce the fan noise noticeably

00:37:46   when they moved from the old crappy symmetrical fan blades

00:37:49   to the Retina MacBook Pro in 2012.

00:37:52   When Johnny first talked about the asymmetric fan blade,

00:37:55   they showed the waveform.

00:37:56   - Yeah, it's not louder, but the annoyingness of it,

00:38:01   And the asymmetrical really helped with the annoyingness.

00:38:03   It turned it more into a white noise thing,

00:38:05   but I think it's still not a contest.

00:38:07   I'm annoyed that I can hear the iMac at all.

00:38:09   I'm annoyed at what I hear when I hear a laptop going with,

00:38:13   I haven't heard the new ones obviously,

00:38:14   but the asymmetrical fan ones, they still,

00:38:17   I don't like the sound of a white noise generating machine.

00:38:20   - Yeah, neither do I.

00:38:21   And I don't like, but see, when my iMac fans spin up,

00:38:25   I consider that something that I either need

00:38:27   to put headphones on right now and stop hearing this,

00:38:29   or I need to find the process that is using all my CPU power

00:38:32   and just kill it.

00:38:34   Because I really do not like hearing fan noise while I work.

00:38:37   It's simple as that.

00:38:38   So a Mac Pro is silent under load in most rooms,

00:38:42   and that's one of the reasons I love it,

00:38:43   and that's one of the things I will greatly miss

00:38:45   if it is truly dead forever.

00:38:47   Which, again, I think it's looking increasingly likely.

00:38:50   We'll see what happens next year.

00:38:51   But anyway, so all I was saying was

00:38:54   it doesn't make a lot of sense for me to maintain

00:38:58   two different four core mid-range to high-end machines

00:39:02   from Apple when I occasionally need one on the road,

00:39:05   but most of the time it's at my desk,

00:39:07   it would make more sense to consolidate that

00:39:09   into one computer.

00:39:10   And maybe even pull an iMac/CGP Grey and have two laptops.

00:39:15   Maybe I have that crazy one and also a very small one,

00:39:20   like either an Escape or a MacBook One

00:39:22   for the travel needs during which I don't need

00:39:25   a lot of power and I just want to have

00:39:26   the smallest thing possible.

00:39:27   and that would hardly ever get upgraded.

00:39:29   But that is a world that I probably should go to,

00:39:34   but currently I am not going to that world

00:39:36   because currently I'm still waiting out

00:39:38   the potential Mac Pro of the future.

00:39:41   So I will see.

00:39:42   ATBTster is pointing out in the chat room

00:39:45   that I should not forget that six core chips

00:39:48   will be coming to the iMac consumer core i7 line,

00:39:53   presumably in the near future.

00:39:56   A six core iMac would be awesome.

00:39:59   I would really prefer more.

00:40:01   If I'm gonna upgrade from four, I want a bigger upgrade.

00:40:04   I wanna go to eight or 12 even,

00:40:06   or even more if I can get it.

00:40:08   So it'd be nice to have even more,

00:40:10   but we'll see.

00:40:12   Again, this all depends on what the hardware brings

00:40:16   over the next year or two,

00:40:17   and whether Apple even makes computers

00:40:19   that use these chips that are coming out.

00:40:21   We don't even know that.

00:40:22   So we'll see, time will tell.

00:40:24   But right now I am not going all laptop.

00:40:27   But all I was saying that if I were more sensible,

00:40:30   it would probably be a better allocation of resources

00:40:33   to just do that.

00:40:35   Which is probably the reason

00:40:35   why so many people do exactly that.

00:40:38   - Indeed.

00:40:39   All right, I just wanted to grumble at you publicly

00:40:41   for a moment, so I feel much better now.

00:40:43   Thanks everyone.

00:40:44   - Anytime.

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00:41:56   - Apple has released a new Mac book and things.

00:42:05   There's a new design book and half of me thinks

00:42:11   I really don't see a problem with it.

00:42:14   And half of me thinks, my word,

00:42:16   have they lost all sense of reality?

00:42:18   and I haven't decided which one's which one's which.

00:42:21   - Did anybody see this coming?

00:42:22   - I didn't, for sure.

00:42:25   - I think it's a totally reasonable

00:42:27   and to be expected thing for them to do.

00:42:29   In fact, I'm surprised they don't do more of it.

00:42:32   I mean, they sell shirts with their things on them.

00:42:34   They sell all sorts of merchandise

00:42:36   with this Apple that has Apple stuff on it.

00:42:38   They love having giant posters of all their,

00:42:42   they're proud of their design.

00:42:44   And this particular thing as sort of a capper

00:42:47   to Johnny Ive's career at Apple, it makes total sense.

00:42:49   I don't think it's all that weird.

00:42:51   - There are a few things that are different about it.

00:42:53   I mean, first of all, the t-shirts, mugs and everything,

00:42:56   you can only buy at their company store

00:42:57   or at their conference.

00:42:59   So you can't just go into any Apple store

00:43:01   or go online and order an Apple t-shirt.

00:43:04   That's kind of a limited thing they keep

00:43:06   only to their store.

00:43:08   - I'm assuming this'll be limited too.

00:43:09   How long do you think they'll sell this?

00:43:11   They're not gonna be selling it for five years.

00:43:13   Maybe Tim Cook says, "You know, we can keep selling

00:43:14   "the same design book for 10 years,

00:43:16   and they're out to lower the price.

00:43:17   - Sure, but the other stuff is more like,

00:43:19   it's like a gift shop at a museum.

00:43:21   It's like I went to Apple to either WBC or to their campus,

00:43:25   and so I got this expensive t-shirt because I went there.

00:43:29   And that's a little bit more justifiable

00:43:32   if you have a problem with this.

00:43:32   By the way, I don't necessarily have a problem with this.

00:43:36   I'm mostly indifferent on it.

00:43:37   I mostly don't care that it exists.

00:43:39   I do think it shows a few things worth considering,

00:43:43   things like possible joining out of retirement.

00:43:46   Overall though, it seems poorly timed.

00:43:49   At a time when Apple is being criticized

00:43:52   for neglecting a lot of their product line

00:43:56   and their new release is being criticized

00:44:00   for being an especially poor value for the money

00:44:03   and they appear to have cut dongle prices

00:44:06   in an effort to show maybe that they're not

00:44:09   just trying to get a whole bunch of extra money

00:44:10   from accessory sales.

00:44:12   So it is kind of an unfortunate time,

00:44:15   Even if you ignore the election, which I don't think you should, but even if you ignore that,

00:44:20   this is kind of a weird time for Apple to release an incredibly self-congratulatory,

00:44:25   highfalutin two to three hundred dollar book about themselves.

00:44:28   It's just, it's a little bit poorly timed, I think.

00:44:31   But even if you don't agree with that, if you set that aside, I think it's mostly fine.

00:44:35   I do think it is one of many signs pointing to Johnny Ives probably not that far off departure

00:44:42   or retirement from Apple, or maybe he'll just ascend

00:44:45   further into the clouds of bizarre titles

00:44:47   that mean he doesn't actually do any day-to-day work.

00:44:50   But that might be the same thing, I don't know.

00:44:53   But I'm not sure if I want one or not.

00:44:56   I might be one of the ideal customers for it.

00:45:00   I buy stupid, expensive things all the time.

00:45:02   (laughs)

00:45:03   And I like Apple stuff usually a lot.

00:45:06   As I was looking, though, at some of the pages

00:45:08   that they have on their sample site and everything,

00:45:10   they just kind of make me sad because they show like,

00:45:14   like on their store, the sample show the Mac Mini case

00:45:17   and like the big cutting wheel, I'm sorry,

00:45:19   I don't know the terms for these various manufacturing

00:45:21   tools, like some giant spiky wheel that presumably

00:45:24   carves out part of the inside of the Mac Mini case.

00:45:27   And it's like, oh, that's really nice that you care so much

00:45:29   about the Mac Mini that you'll take this picture

00:45:31   of the machine that makes its case.

00:45:34   What about the product?

00:45:34   That's been pretty neglected pretty badly.

00:45:37   Or it shows like a picture of the bottom assembly

00:45:42   with the lid popping off of the previous generation

00:45:46   non-retina MacBook Pros.

00:45:48   It might even be the 101 exactly.

00:45:50   And it shows the MacBook Pro bottom lid taken off

00:45:54   and you have the removable battery

00:45:56   and you have the removable upgradeable hard drive

00:45:58   and it's like, oh yeah, remember when laptops

00:45:59   were upgradeable and easily repaired?

00:46:02   It's like, I think this book would mostly

00:46:05   just make me sad, honestly, about either computers

00:46:10   that Apple has neglected and that I am sad about,

00:46:13   like the Mac Pro, which I assume is in there,

00:46:17   or features of computers that are no longer present,

00:46:21   that have been cut through the march of, quote,

00:46:24   progress over the years, some of which is real progress,

00:46:26   some of which is just cutting things.

00:46:28   So I don't know how I feel about this for myself,

00:46:32   but if other people wanna have this book and enjoy it,

00:46:35   that's fine, really.

00:46:37   Again, I do think the release is poorly timed,

00:46:39   but other than that, I don't really have a problem with it.

00:46:43   - I think I mostly agree, but I already have a copy.

00:46:45   It's just called Iconic.

00:46:47   (laughing)

00:46:48   - I have Iconic somewhere, I think, too.

00:46:51   I have the old Apple Design book from the '90s.

00:46:54   It's called the, let me check the title again.

00:46:57   - While you're checking, there is one nitpick I do wanna,

00:46:59   I do want to not forget about though.

00:47:02   And that is, so Steve Jobs' name is all over this book.

00:47:05   His name's all over the press release.

00:47:07   They very prominently dedicate it to him and everything.

00:47:10   I think enough people have said that I don't need

00:47:13   to say too much about that it's questionable

00:47:16   whether Jobs would have actually approved this project

00:47:21   and used it.

00:47:22   I will say though that a lot of people keep saying

00:47:24   that this project was started eight years ago

00:47:26   and therefore that was back when Jobs was alive

00:47:28   and therefore he must have implicitly approved it.

00:47:30   And that's not entirely clear.

00:47:33   When Johnny Ive gave the interview to W something,

00:47:36   Wallpaper, whatever it was, I forget, I'm sorry,

00:47:38   it mentioned that they started collecting the product

00:47:41   to photograph eight years ago.

00:47:44   That doesn't mean they started photographing

00:47:45   for this specific project that was approved

00:47:47   by Jobs eight years ago.

00:47:49   So I do wanna make that clear,

00:47:50   that we don't know that Jobs knew this at all.

00:47:53   And I think, I can't imagine that he would have appreciated

00:47:58   it, but it's always risky for tech people like us to say,

00:48:03   well, Steve Jobs wouldn't have done this or wouldn't have

00:48:04   liked this, 'cause you don't really know him.

00:48:06   The guy changed his mind a lot and he's not here anymore

00:48:08   to refute it, so it's not a great thing to rest on.

00:48:11   But I do think plastering his name all over it

00:48:15   is maybe not so great.

00:48:17   - They just dedicated it to him.

00:48:18   It's not like they're trying to build on his image

00:48:22   to make to sell this book like the book sells itself on its merits. It's just dedicated

00:48:27   to him. It's in the memory of their friend. I think that's fine. And if we can say one

00:48:31   thing about this book, it is that Steve Jobs would like to have it in his house. Whether

00:48:36   or not he thinks it's the product Apple should sell, I guarantee you he would love to have

00:48:40   this book. He would sit there on his couch with his bare feet and leaf through it and

00:48:44   look at the great work that he's done. Whether he thinks the things Apple should be selling

00:48:49   is a whole other story where he thinks Apple should have a museum of all their old stuff

00:48:52   there's a whole other story, but he so clearly took pride in all the products that are in

00:48:57   this thing that he himself, just personally, would surely love to have the best possible

00:49:03   photographs on the best possible paper made in Germany with a special gilding around the

00:49:08   edges and he would love this book.

00:49:11   This seems like a really cool thing to make for your employees, or to maybe sell for a

00:49:17   limited time at your campus store.

00:49:20   But to sell it as a whole product,

00:49:22   I think that kind of raises the bar

00:49:24   and raises the level of criticism a bit,

00:49:28   a little bit unnecessarily maybe.

00:49:30   But you know, 'cause I think it would be a lot cooler

00:49:33   if this was a thing for all the employees

00:49:34   that they just all got for free,

00:49:35   which by the way, are they even getting it for free?

00:49:37   Probably not, they're charging $200 for it.

00:49:39   But imagine if they gave this to all the employees

00:49:42   and the handful of Apple collectors who really want it

00:49:45   would have to go find it on eBay or something like that.

00:49:47   it would be so much cooler if you had one if that was the case. I don't know, it just

00:49:52   seems like that might have been a better way to go here.

00:49:54   Yeah, I tend to agree. So I just reached out to the bookcase behind me and grabbed my copy

00:50:00   of "Iconic" and I started paging through it and I landed on page 130 of "Iconic" and

00:50:08   it has a quote which I will read to you. "If you never change anything, then what you can

00:50:13   really engineers kind of incremental. But when you're willing to change things, then

00:50:17   you kind of open up a whole new world of design. This is Big Bob Mansfield at the launch of

00:50:22   the 2012 MacBook Pro, and the accompanying picture is a MacBook Pro that has MagSafe,

00:50:28   Ethernet, FireWire, Thunderbolt, two USB ports, an SD card slot, a line-in, and a headphone

00:50:34   jack. I just thought that was kind of funny.

00:50:36   That's pretty cool.

00:50:37   So, yeah. So when you're willing to change things, then you open up a whole new world

00:50:41   of design, like fewer ports.

00:50:44   So the book next to me is called Apple Design, all one word, capital A, capital D, colon,

00:50:49   the work of the Apple Industrial Design Group.

00:50:51   And it's an older book, so it's got the stuff from before you guys were Mac users, it's

00:50:55   like mostly the era, well, iconic spans the whole range.

00:50:58   But anyway, it's definitely earlier than the stuff that's in this book.

00:51:03   And I could say I would like to own this book too.

00:51:06   I would totally like to own this book.

00:51:08   But I wouldn't like to own it $300 worth at this point.

00:51:13   And here's the thing, like it's not that $300 for a really super high quality photo book

00:51:17   is that big a deal, it's just that for me personally with you know having just bought

00:51:21   a monitor and PlayStation 4 Pro and all sorts of other stuff, I would spend $300 in this

00:51:28   if it was like the making of the Star Wars books that I bought, which by the way weren't

00:51:31   $300.

00:51:32   Like basically if it was lots more words.

00:51:34   Not that I don't like the pictures, I do, I want the pictures, but if it was the pictures,

00:51:39   but also page upon page upon page of the designers, including Johnny himself, telling the story

00:51:46   of how they came up with these designs in as much detail as they can possibly remember.

00:51:50   Again, like the making of the Star Wars books, which are not first person accounts, but it's

00:51:53   like someone researched and talked to all the people involved and tried to lay out,

00:51:57   here's how each of the three original trilogy Star Wars movies was made from conception

00:52:02   through to production and design, talking to all the people involved and getting quotes from them

00:52:06   and putting it all together, that's what I would like to read. And my impression is this book is

00:52:10   either entirely or at least mostly pictures and not so much about "Apple's gonna tell you, you

00:52:15   know, how the sausage is made." I mean, I'm sure there's lots of pictures of prototypes and, you

00:52:19   know, like things with a tool that Marco talked about or whatever, but it's not really like,

00:52:22   "Tell us, how did you come up with this?" Because I would love to read that, but that is not this.

00:52:27   And what I'm saying is basically if those words were in this book, I would pay $300 for it in a

00:52:31   second but just the photos I I have a longing to own this book but cannot

00:52:37   bring myself to part with $300 for it quite yet maybe maybe I'll break down

00:52:41   depends on how long they sell this maybe I'll succumb to it at some point because

00:52:45   I really do want this book I mean I have tons of books like this but boy $300

00:52:50   that's tough and no I don't want the small one because come on that's nothing

00:52:52   why are there two sizes like that's such a good thing just make it one they should

00:52:57   have called the big one the plus. Some people want a larger book.

00:53:00   Obviously. The big one is huge though. The big one, I think, I'm thinking about if I

00:53:04   had that in my house, how the hell would I even fit it on my shelves? I don't think I

00:53:06   even have any shelves. The Making of Star Wars books are a little bit too big for my

00:53:09   shelves too, but you know, if it's photos, come on, you gotta get the big one.

00:53:13   Yeah, I just gotta say, this iconic book, I hadn't paged through it in a long time.

00:53:18   Man, is this a nice book. It really honestly is. And it's cheap now. It's like 50 bucks

00:53:23   on Amazon right now. It's definitely worth it.

00:53:25   I wonder if I can get the business rep discount on the book.

00:53:29   - 15% off your $300 book.

00:53:31   (laughing)

00:53:32   So my Apple design book is right next to

00:53:34   the Art of Kiki's Delivery Service,

00:53:36   The Complete Works of Larry L. Moore.

00:53:38   What else do I have?

00:53:40   A Hyrule Historia, Legend of Zelda book,

00:53:43   all of which are about the same size,

00:53:44   big kind of glossy photo book things,

00:53:46   but none of which cost $300.

00:53:49   - No, I mean, people who know more about art books,

00:53:52   and as you said, Jon,

00:53:54   I don't think it's outrageously priced for what it is,

00:53:58   but it certainly doesn't contribute,

00:54:00   or it certainly doesn't help the recent,

00:54:03   or possibly the forever reputation of Apple

00:54:06   for this elitist company making expensive things

00:54:09   that only for rich people.

00:54:10   This doesn't really help that image at all.

00:54:14   This really, I don't know.

00:54:15   Again, this is not a big deal.

00:54:17   I don't feel that strongly about this book either way.

00:54:19   I might even buy one, who knows?

00:54:20   But I do think it was a little poorly timed

00:54:24   for image sake, I think.

00:54:26   - And see, the weird thing about this book is,

00:54:29   I like the idea that Apple itself is the one doing it,

00:54:32   because as great as iconic is

00:54:34   in the Apple design books or whatever,

00:54:35   Apple presumably, I mean,

00:54:39   you would think they would have access to all this stuff,

00:54:40   but apparently they didn't

00:54:41   and had to go out and buy it or whatever.

00:54:43   But either way, like, they,

00:54:45   Apple's really good at taking pictures of its products.

00:54:48   They have the most experience of anybody in the entire world

00:54:51   taking pictures of Apple products,

00:54:52   because that's what they do,

00:54:53   and they do it really, really well.

00:54:55   And because they're all obsessive, detailed people

00:54:58   about like the printing and the color and the paper,

00:55:00   I bet it's a really nice book, right?

00:55:03   But the one thing that Apple can bring to this book

00:55:07   above and beyond those two things that I just mentioned,

00:55:11   that nobody else can, is that they have the best access

00:55:15   to the people who were involved in making these.

00:55:17   Some of those people may be gone,

00:55:18   although supposedly there's very little turnover

00:55:20   in Johnny Ive's little design group there.

00:55:22   That's the value they can bring to this.

00:55:24   The whole angle you're getting at, Mark,

00:55:25   was like Apple's making a book about how great they are.

00:55:28   That's right, they're making a book about themselves

00:55:29   and saying we are awesome.

00:55:30   Or just look at all these cool things that we made.

00:55:32   Which I guess is okay, but if you wanna blunt that,

00:55:34   it's like don't just make it,

00:55:36   look at these awesome things that we made,

00:55:38   bring the value that only you have.

00:55:39   Tell us the stories, people who worked on these products.

00:55:42   Tell us about how you made them,

00:55:43   because no one else can tell us how they made them.

00:55:45   Other people can take pictures of them.

00:55:47   Other people can make a big glossy photo book.

00:55:49   Other people could probably find the right kind of paper

00:55:52   and do the cool printing and do all the things,

00:55:54   but nobody but you guys can tell us the story

00:55:57   of how these products were made.

00:55:58   And they're not doing that.

00:55:59   So they're like saying how great they are,

00:56:01   but like, I don't want to tell you too much about it.

00:56:04   Just look at this stuff.

00:56:04   We're pretty great, huh?

00:56:05   Nevermind how it was made.

00:56:06   And that definitely shades more into the,

00:56:09   that makes it less forgivable

00:56:12   as an act of self-congratulations,

00:56:15   because if you are describing how you did it,

00:56:17   you're not just congratulating yourself.

00:56:18   Even if the whole book is like,

00:56:19   we had these hard problems and we solved them

00:56:21   because we were super smart.

00:56:22   You're passing on your knowledge.

00:56:24   You're telling the rest of the world,

00:56:26   learn from our lessons,

00:56:28   which you can still do with a lot of ego

00:56:30   and back padding,

00:56:32   but I think that would offset the,

00:56:35   look how great we are angle of it.

00:56:36   And like you said,

00:56:38   and like how many people said,

00:56:40   and like we talked about with the actual,

00:56:41   the new MacBook Pros,

00:56:43   the past several shows,

00:56:45   it's not so much the thing itself,

00:56:46   it's the context into which it's introduced.

00:56:48   And so, like Margaret said,

00:56:49   the timing is bad.

00:56:50   And at this point, almost anything you're introduced

00:56:53   into the context of a certain set of grumpy Apple fans

00:56:57   is going to be looked upon with a very critical eye.

00:57:02   And people are generally in a bad mood

00:57:05   for reasons that some of which

00:57:06   may be outside Apple's control.

00:57:08   Whatever, if they've been building towards this

00:57:11   for eight years, fine, whatever, release it.

00:57:13   Like holiday season, it's a good gift idea

00:57:16   for the Apple nerd in your life.

00:57:20   I don't fault them, I don't think it's that big a deal.

00:57:22   I just wish it wasn't $300 'cause I really want this book.

00:57:25   (laughing)

00:57:26   - You know, and one thing, I think you nailed it about,

00:57:29   like, you know, part of the sense

00:57:30   that it rubs people the wrong way

00:57:31   is the fact that there is, there are, you know,

00:57:33   no words or as you said, like, you know,

00:57:35   they have access to the people.

00:57:38   They could have added a human, a more human touch

00:57:40   and it seems like they, I mean, we haven't read the book yet

00:57:44   but from the few sample pages we've seen,

00:57:46   it really does seem like they didn't, you know,

00:57:47   there's no words in it.

00:57:49   And I think if I had to summarize, I guess,

00:57:54   the main disappointment I have with Apple recently,

00:57:58   which I think a lot of people feel

00:57:59   but might not have put into words,

00:58:01   is that it seems to just lack humanity recently.

00:58:06   This might be a Steve to Tim thing, I don't know.

00:58:10   I haven't given a ton of thought to this yet.

00:58:12   It's hard to put it into words.

00:58:13   But Steve, even though we knew he could be cold and ruthless

00:58:18   ruthless to people when he had to be, his public persona, which really did reflect upon

00:58:25   the whole company to the public, was really quite warm and human. And with the transition

00:58:32   to Tim Cook's Apple and Johnny Ive's Apple, which is, you know, that's really what this

00:58:37   is these days, Apple, the public image that we get, even though most of the same people

00:58:43   are still there, but the public image that is shown to us, what gets out, is a lot more

00:58:48   cold and the humanity has been stripped out of it.

00:58:52   And I think part of what bugged people about things

00:58:55   like removing the startup chime on the new MacBook Pros

00:58:57   and removing the light up logo on the back

00:59:00   is like that's a little bit more of this humanity

00:59:02   that's just being pulled out of the products

00:59:05   and we don't see warmth and humanity

00:59:09   as much as we used to anymore.

00:59:10   A promo video showing what people are doing

00:59:13   with the products is different.

00:59:14   - Do you think it's humanity?

00:59:15   - I do, I do think it's humanity.

00:59:17   I think we don't--

00:59:18   - I would say, you don't think whimsy is a better word?

00:59:21   'Cause a whim, there's a stronger case for whimsy

00:59:23   because humanity, I think of like,

00:59:25   Tim Cook is much more into, you know,

00:59:28   the human aspects or social aspects

00:59:32   of both the products and the company

00:59:34   than Steve Jobs ever was.

00:59:35   And Tim Cook, in the Tim Cook era,

00:59:37   he's the one who's constantly starting presentations

00:59:39   with videos about accessibility

00:59:42   and people who are being, you know,

00:59:44   human story of being empowered by Apple products. I would call that human too, but whimsical is,

00:59:51   you know, where like it is dorky. Maybe, you know, whimsy is just like the little happy Mac and the

00:59:59   chime and the little poof animation and stuff. Silly things like that seem to not be to Johnny

01:00:06   Ive's taste because he's not into the poof, right? He's not into the happy Mac, the smile,

01:00:12   and the chime, he's into the iPhone that doesn't even have a logo that you can see when you

01:00:16   look at it, right?

01:00:18   And Tim Cook is deferring to Johnny Ive in that way, so I think you're right to refer

01:00:21   to it as the Tim Cook/Johnny Ive Apple.

01:00:24   So there is definitely less sense of whimsy.

01:00:27   And whimsy can be seen as warmth and his design aesthetic can be thought of as cold, but I

01:00:31   think Tim Cook's Apple and Tim Cook specifically are all about humanity, just not about dorkiness

01:00:39   and whimsy.

01:00:40   - Yeah, again, I'm not saying that the company,

01:00:43   'cause the same people are mostly there, right,

01:00:46   especially at the upper levels,

01:00:47   not a lot has changed there.

01:00:49   We know that they do good, these are good people,

01:00:53   and they do good things for the world,

01:00:55   but it doesn't come across, the amount of warmth,

01:01:00   and maybe humanity might not be exactly the right word,

01:01:03   I do think whimsy's part of it,

01:01:04   but I don't think whimsy covers all of what I'm missing.

01:01:07   - What about the ads, like when they show,

01:01:09   - A lot of their recent ads have been all about

01:01:12   showing people using the product.

01:01:13   Remember the one with the kid with his nose

01:01:15   buried in his phone during the holidays,

01:01:17   the Christmas thing, and at the end he's made the video

01:01:19   of them making the stuff.

01:01:20   Or just like the people who, with your watch,

01:01:22   you get up and it's early in the morning,

01:01:24   it's still dark out, you lay up your sneakers,

01:01:25   you put on your watch, you go out running,

01:01:27   or you're running through the rain

01:01:28   with your now water-resistant phone.

01:01:30   Their ads, even more than they used to be,

01:01:33   have been less about glorifying the objects

01:01:35   as these beautiful totems of technology

01:01:37   as like, look how smooth and sleek it is,

01:01:38   which they still do in the presentations to us,

01:01:40   but on television, it's all about the people.

01:01:43   It's all about, I am a runner, I like to take photographs,

01:01:46   I'm on a family vacation, and buy this device

01:01:49   and your kid will look like a sulky teenager,

01:01:52   really, he will be a loving, wonderful, creative child,

01:01:55   which is false advertising, but anyway.

01:01:57   (laughing)

01:01:59   He'll just sulk and won't actually make a video for you.

01:02:01   He's just texting his friends all the time.

01:02:04   The ad seems to be focusing on, again,

01:02:06   the humanity of, like, that it's not about the product,

01:02:11   it's about the people

01:02:12   and what the products enable the people to do.

01:02:14   So again, that's, you know,

01:02:15   Apple chooses what kind of ads it makes,

01:02:16   like the advertising company makes them,

01:02:18   but Apple can give them the direction.

01:02:20   And it is less like that, you know,

01:02:22   in the Steve Jobs era, you had a series of commercials

01:02:25   that were all about showing you the hardware,

01:02:27   like the LifeSavers iMacs flying across the screen.

01:02:29   Look, they're shiny and colored,

01:02:30   and look at the, when the iMac SE came out,

01:02:33   it's all sleek and graphitey, like,

01:02:36   Those were more obsessed with the objects

01:02:38   'cause that was all about like,

01:02:39   hey, hardware can be fashion and look at these things.

01:02:43   And I think it started to shift with the iPod

01:02:44   where it was like, yeah, there's silhouettes dancing

01:02:47   and you can see the iPod with the white cord,

01:02:48   but it's all about people dancing and music.

01:02:50   And at this point, they're selling phones

01:02:53   by showing you people jogging, right?

01:02:55   So it is so far from,

01:02:56   I think it is definitely a very human approach.

01:03:00   But again, I would say that the product designs themselves

01:03:04   and what things the company decides to do

01:03:08   definitely seem less whimsical and less dorky

01:03:11   and I can see that as being more cold and less warm.

01:03:14   - The ads, you're right, the ads are fine,

01:03:16   but they're ads, they're commercials.

01:03:18   I'm referring to mostly the products

01:03:21   and then some also of the presentations

01:03:24   by the actual humans on stage at the events.

01:03:28   So again, it's hard to not make this about Steve

01:03:32   because Steve was really good at really being personable

01:03:37   up there on stage, and whether it was rehearsed

01:03:39   or fake or real or whatever, I don't know.

01:03:42   It didn't matter.

01:03:43   It really did come across as genuine and real and warm.

01:03:47   And that's what I miss, both on stage,

01:03:50   I don't care about the videos,

01:03:51   the use of more and more videos actually, to me,

01:03:53   feels colder, it feels more artificial.

01:03:56   But that's beside the point for now.

01:03:59   All I'm saying is I miss this level of warmth

01:04:03   that we used to get from them in these presentations,

01:04:06   and then I think the whimsy in the product is part of that.

01:04:10   That showed in the products,

01:04:12   and it seems like modern Apple is all about

01:04:15   really editing that out as part of a march

01:04:18   towards quote simplifying or quote progress,

01:04:21   but we're losing a lot of that,

01:04:24   and we don't seem to be gaining it in many areas anymore.

01:04:27   it seemed like the company just moved on past that.

01:04:30   It's just now, it's just a lot more like cold

01:04:32   and almost robotic.

01:04:34   So this book coming out with all pictures

01:04:37   of Johnny Ives' robotic tools in stark white backgrounds

01:04:42   with no words, I think is kind of like a culmination

01:04:46   of that cold process.

01:04:49   And that's what kind of rubs me the wrong way

01:04:50   about the book and about Apple today,

01:04:53   if I had to summarize it down.

01:04:55   Again, I'm sorry if I'm not expressing this well.

01:04:59   This is really still a very squishy thought in my head,

01:05:02   but I'm trying to put into words a complex feeling

01:05:07   that I've been feeling over a while,

01:05:08   but I just miss that warmth that we used to get,

01:05:12   whether it was real or not,

01:05:14   from both Steve and the products,

01:05:16   that I think we're really missing a lot of that recently.

01:05:19   - So if you were to get this book,

01:05:20   and if it was chronological, which I'm not sure that it is,

01:05:22   but if it is chronological, you could flip through it

01:05:25   and watch the whimsy slowly drain out of the product

01:05:27   as you start with Tangerine IMAX

01:05:31   and all these brightly colored things that like,

01:05:34   the toilet seat eye books and all these things

01:05:37   that just look so exciting and Dr. Suessy

01:05:40   and slowly but surely everything turns silver and glass

01:05:44   and uniform and not shiny and not matte

01:05:48   and just in betweeny and just it smooths out.

01:05:54   Which I like both those aesthetics.

01:05:56   That's why I think this book highlights some of Apple's best work in terms of industrial

01:06:01   design because it does include all the way from the vibrancy of the original iMacs and

01:06:09   even the one with the big neck and all the other stuff all the way up to the modern era

01:06:15   of everything being sleek and clean.

01:06:17   Those are both great aesthetics, but chronologically speaking, you can see the trend.

01:06:23   I could just read the book backwards and make myself feel really happy.

01:06:25   You could Benjamin Button it.

01:06:29   I think I agree with you Marco.

01:06:32   I just can't shake this feeling that Apple is reluctantly moving closer and closer to

01:06:39   being the IBM that they fought so hard against when you and I were like really little.

01:06:45   Let's not go crazy here.

01:06:47   No, I don't think they're there, but if you look at the IBM of the early to mid 80s, probably even

01:06:55   late 80s, it was not boring, but certainly it did not have whimsy. And I would not say that Apple's

01:07:02   products today are boring by any stretch of the imagination, but I agree that they've lost some

01:07:07   of that. And I actually think humanity is a good word for it, if a bit overblown, but I can't come

01:07:15   up with a better one, and I think I like humanity more than whimsy, but anyway, it just doesn't

01:07:19   feel as happy-go-lucky as it used to.

01:07:24   And I think part of that is no longer being the underdog and is now being king of the

01:07:28   hill, which maybe that's our perception.

01:07:32   Maybe it's that because we perceive them as king of the hill, we perceive them as boring

01:07:36   and they're anything but.

01:07:38   But I don't know, I don't think that's the case.

01:07:40   And I agree with you, and it's funny because on the one side I love the look of the new

01:07:44   Macbook Pro, at least in photographs. I haven't seen one in person yet, but in

01:07:47   photographs it looks phenomenal. I love it. I think it looks really great, and I

01:07:53   think that's in part because, you know, a very black aesthetic appeals to me. But

01:07:58   yet I miss the fun of all these different colored iMacs. You know, the

01:08:04   computers that I saw running around campus when I was in school in the early

01:08:07   2000s, they just looked fun. And I wouldn't say a new Macbook Pro looks fun.

01:08:11   It looks really damn good. It looks more aesthetically good. I'd say than perhaps any other

01:08:18   Laptop on the market today and in fact I've said before and I'll say again this iPhone 7

01:08:23   I'm holding in my hands right now this this matte black iPhone 7. I think it's the best looking iPhone

01:08:29   I've seen yet. However, I

01:08:31   Wouldn't say it looks fun despite it looking really good and I miss that kind of fun aspect

01:08:38   - Yeah, and I'm not saying the products are bad.

01:08:41   The products are in many ways better than ever now.

01:08:46   By most measures, most of the products are better than ever.

01:08:50   They're still good products.

01:08:52   In many ways, they're still great products.

01:08:54   But again, it's this feeling that I'm missing

01:08:58   that we used to have here.

01:09:00   And maybe I'm just old and jaded and boring, I don't know.

01:09:04   Maybe I'm just mad about the Mac Pro still, I don't know.

01:09:06   But it just feels like I'm missing this feeling.

01:09:10   - I'm not, well I am old and jaded,

01:09:12   but I'm not jaded about the Mac Pro specifically.

01:09:14   - There we go.

01:09:15   - And I'm not jaded about the MacBook Pro specifically.

01:09:18   And I do largely agree with you that it just,

01:09:21   it's not as fun as it once was.

01:09:23   And again, maybe is that just by virtue of them

01:09:26   being no longer the underdog?

01:09:28   So you know, it's fun to root for the underdog.

01:09:31   It's not fun to root for the king of the hill.

01:09:32   So maybe it's misplaced, maybe the problem is us.

01:09:35   But I agree with you, nevertheless.

01:09:38   I think the design trend that is described from the more whimsical computers that varied more

01:09:44   widely in shape and color and texture and everything about them to the current design is a natural

01:09:49   consequence of the advance of the technology. Because as we acquire the technology to make the

01:09:56   products that we have now that, you know, in the case of eye devices are essentially rectangles

01:10:00   that are screens that get increasingly thinner, and for the case of laptops, a screen rectangle

01:10:06   and then a rectangle with a keyboard and an increasingly large trackpad, your options

01:10:10   for industrial design start to be in conflict with the advances that you're, you know, reaping

01:10:17   the benefits of actually being able to make it smaller. Like, if you look at the size

01:10:20   of the plastic that surrounds the screen on the toilet seat iMacs, it is vast, right?

01:10:27   that allows you to make this cool-looking, strange oblong kind of purse-like design and

01:10:31   everything that gives you the room to make those big scoops and colors and contrasts.

01:10:36   But there's no more room for that in a world where it's basically a screen with the margins

01:10:41   slowly shrinking around it, or like the laptops getting thinner and thinner and smaller and

01:10:46   tighter and tighter.

01:10:47   And why fight that?

01:10:49   The correct direction is, aesthetically speaking, to say embrace that and embrace an aesthetic

01:10:55   that can work with increasingly svelte devices.

01:11:00   And that is yet another reason to add to the list

01:11:03   of why the Mac Pro would be great,

01:11:04   because the Mac Pro does not have a screen on it.

01:11:07   You do have the freedom to make it,

01:11:09   they can make it shaped like a soccer ball,

01:11:11   it can be shaped like a spiral,

01:11:12   apparently it can be shaped like a garbage can,

01:11:14   it can be shaped like a cheese grater.

01:11:15   It actually gives them the most options

01:11:19   in terms of industrial design,

01:11:20   because they are no longer constrained

01:11:21   by the fact that you have to carry it

01:11:23   and that making it smaller and thinner and lighter is such a benefit in the long run

01:11:27   that they can't afford to put a giant plastic handle on it and a huge three inch border

01:11:30   around the entire screen because that's ridiculous, like no one wants that anymore.

01:11:34   It looks old and it is old and it's bad.

01:11:36   But when it sits on your desk or under your desk, a lot more options open up and so it's

01:11:40   just another reason that it would be a shame if they totally gave up that form factor.

01:11:44   Or if they said, even in that form factor, you want it to be as small and minimal as

01:11:49   possible and so that's how you get the current Mac Mini and the Apple TV which are just the

01:11:52   most, you know, it's not appropriate, I think, for those things to be, well maybe the Apple

01:11:56   TV because that should be boring because you don't even see it, but the Mac Mini, you can

01:12:00   have a little bit more fun with that maybe. Put some vents and strakes on it, make it

01:12:04   look like a Ferrari, I don't know. But there's no reason for it to be as boring as it is.

01:12:08   But there are reasons for the phone to be as boring as it is and for the laptops to

01:12:11   be not as boring, but like for them to look like they do, I think there are very good

01:12:15   reasons for them to do that and I think if they had tried to keep the old aesthetic while

01:12:19   going along with the market technology that allows you to make them thinner and lighter,

01:12:23   it would be a bad tension between those two things. You can't make a modern laptop that

01:12:28   looks like the toilet seat iBook. You just can't. It's not the right design approach.

01:12:32   Back then it was, now it's not. Now you could take the current ones and make them in candy

01:12:37   apple red with the same form factor, making it like polished glossy candy apple red, and

01:12:41   that would be fun, but it's still, you know, like, color and texture is basically all they

01:12:47   have left to play with because shape-wise it's not like they're gonna be adding fins and strakes,

01:12:51   you know, tail fins on the next iPad Pro or whatever.

01:12:54   Yeah, I agree. Like, why couldn't we have all the colors of the 5C on the 7, you know? Because

01:13:03   those were fun, I thought. And I think they appealed to a lot of people that perhaps weren't

01:13:08   as, you know, technically minded in terms of stats and like having to have the latest and greatest.

01:13:14   I still see 5Cs floating around from time to time, so why not have that color range

01:13:19   on the top of the line phone?

01:13:21   Well, because it's not proper?

01:13:22   I mean, I don't know.

01:13:23   I just, I do kind of miss that.

01:13:25   Even though, even though on the one side I wouldn't ever pick any of those, I guess this

01:13:30   is my Halo car.

01:13:31   Like, I don't really see the need for a Mac Pro, and I'm not trying to open up that conversation

01:13:34   again, but to me I don't see the need for a Mac Pro.

01:13:37   But I do like—I would notice an array of colors on the iPhone 7 and be pleased that

01:13:44   they exist even though there was no freaking way I would choose anything but matte black

01:13:48   or maybe jet black.

01:13:49   I like the Naked Robotic Core again.

01:13:51   It's like, in real life, you see phones that are all sorts of colors.

01:13:54   That's just not the color of the phone.

01:13:55   It's the color of people's cases.

01:13:56   I see phone cases.

01:13:58   It's a huge range of colors, textures, sizes, features, ones that you can put your credit

01:14:02   card into, ones that have a place for a stylist to go into.

01:14:04   Like, there's huge things with mirrors on the back of them.

01:14:07   They just think clamshell ones, ones with covers, you know, just huge range, but that's

01:14:12   Apple's not doing any of that.

01:14:14   They're just giving you the acrobatic core.

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01:15:37   - We've been putting off for a long time

01:15:42   talking about this Microsoft Surface Studio.

01:15:47   And I think that we should probably talk

01:15:50   about the Nintendo Switch.

01:15:51   (laughing)

01:15:54   We don't actually have to do that, but I couldn't resist.

01:15:56   - We should do the Surface Studio first.

01:15:57   And in fact, it's been so long

01:16:00   since the Surface Studio event, whatever the heck that was,

01:16:03   I think we need the Chief Summarizer and Chief to remind everyone what the hell the Microsoft

01:16:07   Surface Studio is. What if the Chief Summarizer and Chief doesn't remember anymore? No, I can

01:16:13   wing it. So this was, I don't recall exactly what it was, but it was a few weeks ago that Microsoft

01:16:20   had some sort of product demo where they debuted the Surface Studio, which at first appeared to be

01:16:31   an iMac. In many ways it just seemed like an iMac. An iMac, but, well, I guess I should say an iMac and

01:16:36   a Mac Mini, right? Because it's the screen of an iMac, it appeared, it's 28 inches, and this, and the

01:16:44   computer bits are in a base that looks very much like a Mac Mini. It's all black and aluminum, or at

01:16:52   least aluminum colored, and it all looks very snazzy, and I don't mean that sarcastically, it really

01:16:56   honestly does look good. And at first it was like, "Okay, great, you're doing an iMac,

01:17:01   woo-woo." But then they mentioned that, "Oh, this is a touchscreen, a 28-inch touchscreen."

01:17:06   And suddenly people start to go, "Hmm, okay, tell me more." And then the real party trick

01:17:13   happened, which was Microsoft explained why there are two arms going from the Mac Mini

01:17:18   to the iMac, and those arms allow you, from what they showed, allow you to very effortlessly

01:17:27   turn this iMac into kind of an easel.

01:17:31   So it's at a very, very shallow angle, such that you could use it as though it's a writing

01:17:36   surface.

01:17:37   And it has with it their equivalent of an Apple Pencil.

01:17:40   And even more importantly, it has—or maybe not more importantly, but differently—it

01:17:46   also has a surface dial. And so what this is, is a little puck sort of thing. It's actually

01:17:53   not that dissimilar from the puck mouse that everyone hated, but much taller. And you can

01:17:58   sit that on your desk and you can spin it in order to, I don't know, change volume or

01:18:02   get different, you know, tools as you're using the pen. But where it gets even cooler still,

01:18:08   and you have to understand that this hinge that they have genuinely is really neat. It

01:18:12   It looks really, really clever.

01:18:14   But what's cooler still about the Surface Dial, this puck, is that you can drop this

01:18:18   thing right on the display, and the display recognizes that it's there and where it is,

01:18:23   and allows you to treat that as another control surface.

01:18:27   So in the way that the naked robotic core is the most pure realization of what somebody

01:18:34   would want for a computing device, of what Apple would want for an iPhone, I think not

01:18:40   Not that this is a naked robotic core, but I feel like this is the most pure realization

01:18:44   of what Microsoft hopes for, for this world that to me is a little bizarro, where you

01:18:51   have a touch-based or touch-permitted, if nothing else, desktop OS.

01:18:57   So Microsoft's strategy for many years now with its Windows thing, especially as the

01:19:02   Windows phone stuff has been fading, has been to have a single OS for all their platforms.

01:19:09   And because that single OS has part of its family tree is phones and tablet type devices

01:19:14   that of course it supports touch, which is why you can do touch in Windows with Windows

01:19:19   8 that started, and they're up to Windows 10 now.

01:19:22   And so they've been changing Windows to be an interface that you can use with a mouse

01:19:26   and a keyboard, you can use with a pen, you can use with your fingers.

01:19:29   And they've been doing this for a long time, and to varying results.

01:19:32   I know some people have the Microsoft Surface, their tablet product that is basically like,

01:19:36   You can use it like a PC with a keyboard attached to it because it's got a hinge thing.

01:19:39   You can use it kind of like a tablet.

01:19:41   If you're using it like a laptop, you can also just poke your finger at the screen,

01:19:44   which I'm sure we've all seen this.

01:19:46   Many people just expect to be able to do that, especially younger people or anyone even who

01:19:49   just uses a touch device for a long time.

01:19:52   They'll switch from an environment where they're using a tablet or a phone to a laptop and

01:19:55   instinctively touch the screen.

01:19:56   I know I used to do it with Kindles before the touchscreen Kindles.

01:20:00   Because I spent so much time with iPads, I would touch the screen to try to do something

01:20:04   on a Kindle.

01:20:05   would happen because they were totally inert, like there was no—this is before the touch-sensitive

01:20:08   ones—it is natural to get into that habit, and Microsoft has built an entire interface

01:20:13   strategy around the idea that all forms of input are welcome, that it should be supported.

01:20:18   They've been changing Windows to not require a perfectly precise mouse pointer or even

01:20:24   a stylus to do things, to try to make bigger, chunkier controls and gestures and stuff like

01:20:29   that.

01:20:30   And this Surface Studio is the biggest this has gotten because previously it was like,

01:20:35   yeah, you get tablets and you got these convertible laptop-y things that are like a tablet with

01:20:38   a keyboard and yeah, of course you can touch the screen and they have the pen input and

01:20:43   all that stuff.

01:20:44   But this is like 28 inches is like, this is not a big tablet.

01:20:48   This is a full size, bigger than most people have because most people do not have 28 inch

01:20:52   screens on their PCs.

01:20:54   Full size personal computer running Windows.

01:20:57   Doesn't pretend to be a tablet.

01:20:58   You can't take it off and carry it like a tablet.

01:21:00   It's not a big phone.

01:21:02   It is a personal computer that has all the normal input modes

01:21:07   you'd want, including a pen, but then also accepts not just

01:21:12   touch, but like-- stop thinking of it as like I'm touching

01:21:15   the screen, but more like removing indirection.

01:21:19   Because the mouse and the keyboard

01:21:20   are indirect input devices.

01:21:22   And they are wonderful input devices,

01:21:25   and they're very precise.

01:21:27   and especially the mouse I feel like is the least indirect of indirect-imposed devices

01:21:31   because if you've used a mouse for any appreciable amount of time, the indirection disappears

01:21:37   very quickly.

01:21:38   You don't feel like you're driving the mouse, versus like say you had a joystick.

01:21:41   If you had a joystick, you would feel like you're driving the mouse cursor around the

01:21:44   screen like it's a little car to get to the things you want.

01:21:47   But if you have a mouse, you just basically feel like you're grabbing things on the screen.

01:21:50   And yes, it is indirect, you're not touching it, it's not as direct as touching the screen

01:21:54   as anyone who uses an iPad or an iPhone knows,

01:21:56   not that kind of direct,

01:21:57   but it is like really good video game controls

01:22:00   in that very quickly it disappears

01:22:02   and you stop thinking about the control

01:22:04   and just start thinking about the task.

01:22:06   But the ultimate direct input is like literal direct input

01:22:09   as in you see something on the screen,

01:22:12   you manipulate it on the screen

01:22:13   with your hands and your fingers or your pen,

01:22:15   like the same way you would in the pre-computer age

01:22:18   if you're doing something that involves

01:22:21   putting marks on a piece of paper

01:22:22   or shuffling things around,

01:22:24   put marks on the piece of paper or shuffle things around.

01:22:26   Like do it, don't move something that moves another thing

01:22:29   on a screen that represents the things you're moving around.

01:22:31   Just get right on that screen.

01:22:32   And this thing tilting down to like a drafting table

01:22:35   type angle, saying like, if you're not doing text input,

01:22:40   you're not writing a program, but instead you're doing

01:22:43   anything having to do with visual arts

01:22:45   or anything like that, turn it down,

01:22:48   set aside your keyboard and your mouse for now,

01:22:50   and just get right on there on that screen.

01:22:52   It's a huge screen, just get right on there.

01:22:53   you got a pen, you got your fingers,

01:22:55   you got the little dialy thing.

01:22:56   I can imagine them adding more types of tools to that.

01:22:59   That to me is the culmination of their strategy

01:23:04   of allowing all forms of input by saying,

01:23:07   here's a form of input.

01:23:08   Not only do we accept all forms of input,

01:23:10   it's like, oh, you can't decide,

01:23:11   you should concentrate on one.

01:23:11   It's kind of weird to type and then use a mouse,

01:23:13   but also touch a screen and make up your mind.

01:23:14   Am I clicking the button with the mouse cursor?

01:23:16   Am I touching it with my finger?

01:23:17   Am I drawing with a pen? What am I doing?

01:23:19   There are many tasks in which directly interacting

01:23:22   with a gigantic screen is the best interface.

01:23:25   The task where you put aside all those other tools

01:23:29   and say, I just want to get right to it.

01:23:30   And obviously they're showing art and stuff like that.

01:23:32   It's the most obvious one.

01:23:34   And this is their first crack at this,

01:23:35   so maybe it's not as good as it could be.

01:23:37   People have said that there's too much parallax

01:23:39   because your pen is too far away from where the pixels are.

01:23:43   And that there's lag in some of the applications.

01:23:44   But I really feel like this is almost inevitably

01:23:49   the future of digital art,

01:23:51   whether Microsoft is going to be the future of digital,

01:23:54   I don't know.

01:23:54   But we've gone through the whole thing of using mice

01:23:58   to using tablets that are an indirect input device

01:24:02   to the Wacom Cintiq, which is like a tablet

01:24:04   that's also a screen.

01:24:06   It's like, just keep going,

01:24:08   because people love all those tools

01:24:09   and they get used to those tools.

01:24:11   But direct input, if you can raise a generation

01:24:14   with the expectation that you do your artwork

01:24:15   on a giant 28-inch monitor by directly manipulating it,

01:24:20   that's gonna win in the end,

01:24:22   whether it's Microsoft or somebody else.

01:24:24   And Microsoft getting there first is, it's nice to see,

01:24:29   even if this is a product that is not great,

01:24:31   and it should be worrying to Apple

01:24:33   because Apple doesn't have anything to compete with this,

01:24:37   like at all.

01:24:39   And I don't think Apple can say,

01:24:40   "We really believe that the future of doing digital art

01:24:43   "is using a Cintiq,"

01:24:45   because Apple doesn't make those either.

01:24:47   "We really believe the future of art is using a mouse

01:24:49   or doing everything on, you know, they have iPads.

01:24:52   All right, so where's your 28-inch iPad that doesn't,

01:24:54   that you need to plug into the wall?

01:24:56   Like whatever Apple's gonna do,

01:24:57   I'm not saying they have to make Macs touch screen

01:24:58   or anything, but if they care at all,

01:25:00   which maybe they don't, about the creative arts

01:25:03   that involve drawing things, even things from like,

01:25:06   I can imagine CAD or architectural drawings,

01:25:08   not just fine arts and illustration and stuff like that,

01:25:10   they need to be doing something about this.

01:25:15   And I was so excited when they came up with the iPad probe,

01:25:17   it was like, yeah, that's what I was talking about.

01:25:18   You need a really big iPad.

01:25:19   And if you go back to listen to all those shows from years and years ago, I think at

01:25:24   some point I did talk about the whole drafting table thing.

01:25:26   I think we talked about it on this very podcast, but also on Hypercritical.

01:25:30   This is it.

01:25:31   Microsoft made it before Apple did.

01:25:32   Apple did make their iPad bigger, but they took a long time to do it, and they didn't

01:25:35   make it bigger, bigger.

01:25:37   And the idea of an iPad that you can't take off your desk, I remember being laughed at

01:25:40   perhaps on this show, perhaps on other ones, like, "Well, what the hell's the point of

01:25:42   an iPad if you can't move it anywhere?"

01:25:44   This is the point.

01:25:45   This is the thing.

01:25:46   So I am super proud of Microsoft for making this.

01:25:50   I hope they keep at it.

01:25:52   I hope they don't say, "Well, not a lot of people bought these," because I guarantee

01:25:55   you not a lot of people are going to buy this because it's really expensive and it's like

01:25:57   the first generation product.

01:25:59   And truth be told, most people don't do fine arts on their computer, right?

01:26:02   But I think this is the right idea for that class of problems.

01:26:07   And if Apple cares about that class of problems, if Apple cares about keeping those creatives,

01:26:11   I think they totally think they should because they are another branch of sort of the founding

01:26:16   bedrock of Apple's products like creative professionals. They need to start putting

01:26:23   the air pump into those iPads and cranking it up pronto because if they don't, someone

01:26:29   else is going to get there first.

01:26:30   Do you have any idea how much I wanted Reebok pumps as a kid? My goodness, I wanted those

01:26:35   so bad. You know, I don't know. I really, I really admire this. Like you said, Jon, I also think that

01:26:43   this solves a class of problems that I just don't have, which, which, I mean, you kind of said as

01:26:48   well. But I, I have a Slack team that I'm in that's a handful of people that are either current or

01:26:56   former employees of my last employer, the consulting gig. And we were actually, I feel like

01:27:02   we have very cyclical conversations and one of them is, "Oh, are touchscreen devices stupid

01:27:08   or not?" And since most of these people are Windows developers, most of them have touchscreen

01:27:13   Windows laptops, and all of them swear, "Oh my god, Casey, you have no idea, it's so good."

01:27:18   And that very well could be the case. Maybe it is that good. But having used a handful

01:27:23   of touchscreen laptops, admittedly, very, very briefly, I have yet to really have it

01:27:29   click. I've yet to say, "Oh, oh yeah, this does make sense." And maybe given a fair shot,

01:27:37   maybe it would, but I don't feel like I want a touchscreen computer to begin with. And

01:27:42   now you're saying, "Well, why not have a touchscreen iMac?" If I was an artist, heck yes. But as

01:27:49   me? Meh, no thanks. It's a cool thing to look at.

01:27:53   But you don't want a touchscreen laptop. Like when you phrase it that way, like, no, no,

01:27:56   Who wants a touch screen? I'm just saying people find themselves compelled to touch a screen, but no, like those things, the Surface

01:28:02   I would say is not a touch screen laptop. It is a tablet with a keyboard. Apple makes one of those already.

01:28:07   It's called the iPad.

01:28:09   The iPad is not a touch screen laptop. It is a tablet that comes with a keyboard. And you think, what's the difference?

01:28:15   Well, they're both basically the same in use. They're opened at the same angle.

01:28:19   There's a keyboard horizontally and a screen kind of vertically. And yes, you can touch the screen.

01:28:24   But you use them in such different ways like oh well when I'm just using it with my hands

01:28:27   It's just an iPad, but then when I wanted typing

01:28:29   I use the keyboard like I don't know what you want to call that but

01:28:33   Phrasing it as a laptop of the keyboard sounds like oh, I don't want to be poking my finger

01:28:37   It's not comfortable as Apple's point out a million times to poke at a vertical screen

01:28:40   it's better to use the indirect input devices, but I

01:28:43   Think it's looking at it the wrong way

01:28:45   It's taking the old the old thing and saying I'm taking the old thing and modifying it by a touchscreen

01:28:51   When we take the new thing which is a tablet and modify it by adding back a keyboard

01:28:54   Everyone's okay with it and it's basically the same result and this thing the surface studio

01:28:58   I think is it's like this is not a touchscreen laptop

01:29:01   This is also not a touchscreen iMac because iMac doesn't lay down on the table for you

01:29:05   Like there's no way hell you've on touchscreen iMac

01:29:07   You can't draw on it on an iMac the thing doesn't going tilts like 15 degrees and most of them are you know?

01:29:12   It's close to straight up and down the whole time

01:29:14   That is not the surface studio the key feature of the surface studio that says

01:29:17   When you want to do the thing like just like an iPad when you just want to use it like an iPad

01:29:21   You don't need the keyboard and the service series like when you want to do stuff doesn't involve text input at all

01:29:26   like you're drawing a picture and doing architectural drawings or like

01:29:29   Manipulating lines or things in space or whatever and you don't have to use the keyboard lay the whole thing down

01:29:36   I think like in the pictures they have like laying down on top of the keyboard like you don't even have to see the keyboard

01:29:40   It's not there anymore. It's like it's the same way the keyboard goes away

01:29:43   When you use your iPad like I'm not using the keyboard part of my iPad now

01:29:47   I'm just using the iPad part of it and that's in a portable context

01:29:50   This is the just simply the desktop equivalent of that

01:29:52   So I'm not sure what you want to call it and it is weird that

01:29:55   Apple's most likely response to this would have to be an iOS device and not a Mac

01:29:58   Which is strange because as we've talked about in the past Apple's thus far their inability to really get pro level

01:30:06   Applications to flourish on iOS devices whereas they're still kind of doing okay on the Mac

01:30:12   Like that's Apple's challenge to solve, but I'm just saying like writ large, you know, I've always you know

01:30:17   The future of computing direct manipulation of her tasks that require it on a big gigantic awesome screen

01:30:22   The only way that's not gonna happen is if a VR and AR

01:30:26   advanced to the point where this approach never has its chance to be in, you know, there's never has to stay in the Sun because

01:30:32   AR and VR if they get good enough make having a big giant thing that lights up in front of you like archaic

01:30:39   But I feel like there will be a time

01:30:41   before AR and VR get good, where it will be the time of the gigantic touch screens that lay down in front of you.

01:30:47   And when I'm super old and I'm,

01:30:50   you know, doing computing stuff that doesn't involve typing,

01:30:54   I would like to have a big gigantic gorgeous screen lay down in front of me so that I can do stuff on it.

01:30:59   And also have a keyboard for when I do text input and also have speech recognition.

01:31:02   Also have a bunch of things like pens and stuff I could do on it.

01:31:05   I'm ready for the Microsoft Surface Studio

01:31:08   with 20 years in advancement,

01:31:10   probably also not being by Microsoft.

01:31:12   (laughing)

01:31:13   - You know, one thing you mentioned briefly earlier, John,

01:31:16   is like, if they stick with this,

01:31:19   and that's 'cause Microsoft,

01:31:21   you know, they throw a lot of spaghetti at the wall.

01:31:22   They change strategies often,

01:31:25   and they change desktop initiatives often.

01:31:30   This product line, like many other things

01:31:32   Microsoft has tried in recent years,

01:31:34   might not be good enough for them,

01:31:37   It might not sell well enough or it might not get enough software support

01:31:40   It won't sell well enough

01:31:42   But like don't you see this as a like the trend like they've spent all these years

01:31:46   Making a single OS that accepts all these kinds of input. Like that's not like a fluke

01:31:51   That's not like like that's what they've been doing and that's what gives them the option to do things like this

01:31:56   I feel like this like I said, this is the culmination of years and years and years of work

01:32:00   You can't make this on day one

01:32:01   You have to do all the work

01:32:03   to make the unified Windows that does all the kinds of input,

01:32:06   to change the Windows UI to even be usable with touch,

01:32:09   to make the device that has a pen that looks like a laptop

01:32:12   with a touchscreen, you have to do years and years of that

01:32:14   before you can make this thing.

01:32:15   So I feel like it's not a fluke.

01:32:17   Sticking with it merely means maybe they will retreat

01:32:20   from making their own PCs.

01:32:21   Like maybe they will retreat back to the Surface

01:32:24   or retreat back to a tablet or a phone size things,

01:32:27   or get out of that business entirely

01:32:29   and just do Microsoft Azure

01:32:30   and then license Windows to Clone Makers, we don't know.

01:32:32   But I don't think like they're gonna say,

01:32:36   oh, actually touching the screen is not a big deal

01:32:38   because they've just spent so long coming to this point.

01:32:41   Like I feel like they worked hard

01:32:43   to be able to produce a machine like this.

01:32:45   And this one won't sell well enough to be significant,

01:32:47   but I really think they will take a second

01:32:50   and a third crack of it.

01:32:51   And when I think of the best in Microsoft,

01:32:53   I think of, oh, it pains me to say this.

01:32:55   I think of the company that made the Xbox,

01:32:57   which was a gigantic, ugly piece of crap,

01:33:02   But they stuck with it and every new Xbox they've made

01:33:04   has been better than the previous one.

01:33:05   - Hey, that first Xbox was a really good system.

01:33:07   But no, I mean like so--

01:33:08   - Xbox was huge, LOL.

01:33:09   - Yep.

01:33:11   No, I think just because they've built in all this

01:33:15   capability for things like touch and pen input.

01:33:18   If you would've looked at the TV market five years ago,

01:33:22   you would've thought that 3D TVs were just

01:33:25   what everybody wanted and they were taking off like crazy

01:33:28   and that obviously-- - Nobody ever thought that.

01:33:30   Obviously the future of TV was gonna be 3D,

01:33:33   but because if you looked at every TV,

01:33:36   every high-end to even mid-range TV you could buy

01:33:39   in a store, they were all 3D supported TVs.

01:33:43   But in practice, the reason that feature was being put there

01:33:46   was because a stagnant industry was trying to add

01:33:49   more hardware things to make people upgrade

01:33:52   because they weren't upgrading their TVs fast enough.

01:33:54   So Microsoft's been putting in all this crazy capability

01:33:58   and stuff into the service line,

01:33:59   all these different input methods and everything else,

01:34:01   it doesn't necessarily mean that everyone's using them

01:34:06   or that this will be how people will use

01:34:09   their Microsoft computers in the future.

01:34:11   It might turn out that way,

01:34:12   but just because the capability's there,

01:34:14   just because Microsoft is building all this,

01:34:17   supporting everything, is building this hardware,

01:34:19   that doesn't mean that PC users

01:34:22   are going to meaningfully adopt this.

01:34:24   Again, they might, but that's not a foregone conclusion.

01:34:27   No, it's not PC users that are buying this,

01:34:30   it is creative professionals specifically,

01:34:32   which is a tiny market, and out of those people,

01:34:34   they're not gonna buy it because this is like,

01:34:36   this is like you trying to enter a market

01:34:38   that another company owns, or like,

01:34:41   there's already a way to set way to do things,

01:34:43   and you have a totally different way to do it.

01:34:45   Some people are gonna try it,

01:34:46   but professionals are the least likely

01:34:48   to change their ways, even if they're already using

01:34:50   a Microsoft Windows PC running Photoshop with a tablet,

01:34:55   whether it's a Cintiq or just a plain old tablet,

01:34:57   even those people aren't gonna buy the Surface Studio

01:35:01   except for on a Lark or to be curious about it.

01:35:03   Because they're set in their ways,

01:35:04   using their Microsoft Windows PC,

01:35:06   running Adobe Photoshop with a tablet.

01:35:08   And they've been doing that their whole career

01:35:10   and that's what they like,

01:35:10   and maybe they're curious about this,

01:35:11   but it's not a big deal.

01:35:12   But the thing about the future is,

01:35:15   if they stick with it and keep selling this,

01:35:18   even though they're not making money on it,

01:35:19   because not enough people buy it,

01:35:22   eventually I think the market will come around to it,

01:35:24   because people who start out new might be interested in it

01:35:27   and try it out and they never got used to using

01:35:29   a non-light-up tablet, or the people who use Cintiqs

01:35:32   might view this as a better Cintiq until they try it

01:35:35   and realize actually the Cintiq is a little bit better

01:35:36   because it's got all these buttons on it they're used to

01:35:38   and so on and so forth. (laughing)

01:35:39   It's gonna be a long road.

01:35:40   And the other X factor is that people don't like Windows.

01:35:44   Or Marco doesn't like it anyway.

01:35:45   Some people don't like Windows.

01:35:46   (laughing)

01:35:47   Believe it or not.

01:35:47   And so those people who don't like Windows

01:35:50   are gonna be like, "Well, this looks great and all,

01:35:52   "but I don't like Windows, so I'm not gonna do that."

01:35:54   all the professionals who are using Macs.

01:35:56   For example, I use Photoshop on a Mac

01:35:58   with the Wacom tablet or whatever.

01:35:59   Like, even just talking to,

01:36:02   seeing the tweets from Dr. Wave on Twitter,

01:36:05   like, "Isn't this perfect for Pixar?"

01:36:06   It's like, well, actually at Pixar,

01:36:07   people who have these giant tablets to draw on

01:36:10   to do their 3D work, they're on like articulated arms.

01:36:13   And so it's a nonstarter for this thing

01:36:14   to just be on a simple hinge that goes on a desk.

01:36:16   Like, this is just one product,

01:36:18   and that it's not as flexible

01:36:19   as the products they're already using,

01:36:21   and they already have a system that works.

01:36:23   And so this may be novel and interesting,

01:36:24   but it doesn't work for Pixar, right?

01:36:27   But this is early days.

01:36:29   This is a single product from a single company

01:36:31   with lots of caveats that are associated with it.

01:36:34   So I'm not gonna say that this is going to make Microsoft

01:36:38   the king of the creative professionals,

01:36:40   but they do have a head start on people.

01:36:41   And if they keep iterating on this product

01:36:43   and this idea and this concept for years and years and years

01:36:46   and keep going with this whole OS strategy with touch

01:36:49   and maybe make Windows a little bit nicer in the process.

01:36:52   and no one else does anything, because who else is there?

01:36:55   It's not like Linux is gonna take over

01:36:56   the credit professional market, right?

01:36:58   It's them and Apple, basically, at this point.

01:37:00   And if Apple doesn't move, it gives Microsoft time

01:37:04   to try and fail and try and fail and try and fail

01:37:06   over and over again, and eventually,

01:37:07   they'll get pretty decent, and they'll basically win

01:37:09   by default if Apple never makes an iPad bigger

01:37:12   than 12.5 inches and never makes a Mac like this.

01:37:15   Thanks a lot to our three sponsors this week,

01:37:18   Betterment, Audible, and Squarespace,

01:37:20   and we will see you next week.

01:37:22   Now the show is over, they didn't even mean to begin

01:37:29   'Cause it was accidental, oh it was accidental

01:37:35   John didn't do any research, Marco and Casey wouldn't let him

01:37:40   'Cause it was accidental, oh it was accidental

01:37:45   And you can find the show notes at ATP.fm

01:37:50   And if you're into Twitter, you can follow them

01:37:55   @C-A-S-E-Y-L-I-S-S

01:37:59   So that's Kasey List M-A-R-C-O-A-R-M

01:38:04   N-T-M-A-R-C-O-R-M-N S-I-R-A-C

01:38:09   U-S-A-C-R-A-C-U-S-A

01:38:11   It's accidental (it's accidental)

01:38:14   They didn't mean to, accidental (accidental)

01:38:19   ♪ Can't protect my castle so long ♪

01:38:23   - You wanna talk about Sal Segoin?

01:38:27   I'm sorry if that's not how you pronounce it.

01:38:28   I haven't had time to research.

01:38:31   This news broke a couple hours before we started recording

01:38:34   that Sal Segoin, he was the product manager,

01:38:39   the head of Mac OS automation technologies.

01:38:45   So that would include things like AppleScript,

01:38:47   Apple Events automator, and apparently he has been let go of Apple, his position has

01:38:53   been eliminated. So basically it sure seems like Apple is no longer going to have a head

01:39:00   of automation of apps on Mac OS. And a lot of long-time Mac users are taking this news

01:39:07   to be possibly a pretty bad sign. Do we want to talk about this? I mean we haven't really

01:39:10   had time to look into it much.

01:39:11   I looked into it, and I know Sal from my reputation and by all the WWDC sessions I've seen with

01:39:18   him, and I've met him in person a couple times, although I'm sure he doesn't remember me.

01:39:21   But—

01:39:22   Yeah, I'm pretty sure I have, too.

01:39:23   He looks very familiar.

01:39:24   Yeah.

01:39:25   He's one of those people you recognize.

01:39:26   There are a couple aspects to this.

01:39:28   One is that Sal is just a very nice, gregarious, charismatic, smart person.

01:39:34   He's got charisma.

01:39:36   You see him, and especially if you're a nerd and you're attracted to smart people, right,

01:39:40   who are interesting and dynamic and have opinions and can express them well, that's Sal.

01:39:46   So people who are long-time Apple fans and who have known him professionally or by reputation

01:39:53   or by his products or presentations are sad to see somebody that everybody liked not be

01:39:59   at the company anymore.

01:40:01   So that's an unquestionable aspect of this entire thing, because if he was a jerk that

01:40:06   everybody hated, this would not be his biggest story.

01:40:08   And then the other part is what you just said about automation.

01:40:13   Automation on the Mac, which people just shorten to say like, "Oh, Sal, he's that AppleScript

01:40:16   guy."

01:40:17   That's a reasonable summary of him if you want to go there, but there's much more to

01:40:20   it than that.

01:40:21   You can read all the stuff on his website.

01:40:22   We'll put a link in the show notes.

01:40:23   It's not just AppleScript, there's also shell scripting and Apple events that AppleScripting

01:40:27   is based on.

01:40:28   You can do it in all sorts of different languages.

01:40:30   And there's the tooling involved with that.

01:40:33   Even as recently as like last year or the year before that, they finally added like

01:40:36   library/framework support for AppleScript so you could write AppleScript

01:40:39   libraries and use them. AppleScript was kind of stuck in amber for a long

01:40:43   time, not really getting any better but not really getting any worse, but was

01:40:46   still an essential part of so many professionals' workflows, like that they

01:40:49   would use AppleScript to automate the things that they did and it was

01:40:54   important to them for their professional applications they were using to have

01:40:56   AppleScript support to be able to do this. Automator in the OS X

01:41:00   age was this other thing like let regular people design sets of actions without having

01:41:08   to be programmers, you know, so automated would let you string together do this and

01:41:12   do that and do that without having to like learn language, even a language is as simple

01:41:16   as AppleScript.

01:41:18   And his position being eliminated, I don't know enough about the internal rearrangement,

01:41:24   but it could just be that like the division is merged with some other division.

01:41:30   was another person that Apple likes better who's heading that division, so he's out and

01:41:33   that person is in. But it could also be that, and this would totally fit with Apple's recent moves,

01:41:38   as in neglecting the Mac Pro and having difficulty making Pro apps and

01:41:43   canning Aperture and all that other stuff, that they see

01:41:46   users creating automations. In anything even approaching a program-like environment,

01:41:54   whether it be HyperCard, rest in peace, or Automator, or writing Apple scripts and scales,

01:42:00   that is not the future of computing. It's too complicated, regular people don't want to do it,

01:42:05   the professionals who want to do it are really causing more problems for themselves than they're

01:42:08   solving and really they should just allow us to define the workflows by hard coding them into our

01:42:11   applications or just buy another application that does what they want and stop trying to program it

01:42:15   or whatever. Therefore having an automation division and a product manager of automation,

01:42:20   that's not the future of the company, that's not the future of the Mac, we don't need that anymore,

01:42:23   it's a waste of time and resources and it's holding back our other approaches. That's like

01:42:27   the doomsday scenario. The most pessimistic scenario is that automation is being de-emphasized

01:42:32   in the same way that writing batch scripts would be de-emphasized, or having to write programs

01:42:37   yourself would be de-emphasized, right? And it makes some sense. The march of progress has been

01:42:44   de-emphasizing the need for people who use computers to do stuff like that. It used to be

01:42:50   that you had to enter your programs by typing them from the back of a magazine in BASIC, and that's

01:42:53   that's how you got your program to run, right?

01:42:55   And no one does that anymore.

01:42:55   Now we have the App Store, right?

01:42:57   And a lot of the things that we used to use automation for

01:43:00   hopefully are mooted by the fact that programs

01:43:03   are just better or the internet does it better

01:43:05   or even something as simple as like,

01:43:07   what is the thing for iOS, workflows?

01:43:10   Yeah, workflow, right.

01:43:12   It's a third party opportunity.

01:43:13   Workflow is just fine.

01:43:14   Apple doesn't need to do it.

01:43:15   We just need to provide the capabilities

01:43:16   and Apple events itself, you can't argue with the fact

01:43:18   that Apple events is pretty damn old and creaky.

01:43:21   hit this, it could be that it's all being replaced by some bold new vision of automation

01:43:26   for the modern age in the same way that AppleScript replaced everything that came before it.

01:43:31   But as with all things in Apple, we don't know.

01:43:33   It's a big black hole, we have no idea what they're planning, we just have fear, uncertainty,

01:43:38   and doubt, and once again this is all in the context of Apple fans being grumpy for a bunch

01:43:45   of related reasons.

01:43:46   It can feel bad, but I'm not entirely ready to go all doom and gloom on this, just because

01:43:52   it could just be that it's time to turn on a new page, because Sal and all the tech that

01:43:58   he was working on, and especially the foundational tech like Apple events, has never really felt

01:44:01   like it has fit into the OS X world.

01:44:05   So best case scenario, they're rethinking this all and saying, "What does automation

01:44:08   mean from here going forward?"

01:44:12   Does it mean Apple events or is there a better overall system for automating things on the

01:44:17   computer?

01:44:18   So in worst case, Tim Cook says, "Automating things is stupid.

01:44:20   We don't need to do that anymore.

01:44:21   People should just tap their meaty little fingers on screens and not worry about it."

01:44:25   Yeah, I never really wrote much AppleScript.

01:44:29   I did real early on when I had first gotten my Mac to do, I don't know, like some silly

01:44:36   basic things.

01:44:37   I forget exactly what it was for, but it was like maybe setting a default printer or something

01:44:40   like that.

01:44:41   And this was like in 2008-ish, and I personally have never really gone back and had a need

01:44:47   to write more.

01:44:48   Now I know there's tons of people who write it a lot and use it heavily, but for me, this

01:44:56   is not something I'm terribly worried about and not something that I use terribly often.

01:45:00   But it also does make me a little bit sad.

01:45:02   If this is a canary in a coal mine, in the coal mine for automation in Mac OS, it'd bum

01:45:08   me out if that went away, but I wouldn't say it would necessarily affect my day to day

01:45:12   either.

01:45:13   - I mean it's more about like, it's a very, very powerful set of features.

01:45:21   AppleScript, the language is kind of, that's just the implementation detail of it, but

01:45:25   the system on which it's based that exposes Apple events and control of applications,

01:45:31   automation of other applications through this entire API that can be any language you need

01:45:36   it to be and there's many things that expose it

01:45:39   as different languages like I think JSTalk

01:45:42   makes it JavaScript and I think there's a few other things

01:45:44   like that.

01:45:45   You know, it's more this, that feature set,

01:45:50   while it is used by probably a very tiny percentage

01:45:53   of Mac users, the amount of power it gives is so great

01:45:58   that, you know, this, really, Mac OS,

01:46:02   one of the things I love so much about Mac OS

01:46:05   is that it is just so incredibly powerful.

01:46:09   I mean that deeply.

01:46:11   It is incredibly powerful if you know how to use its power.

01:46:16   There is an, it is in every sense of the word,

01:46:21   a true workstation OS, as I said in my Mac Pro post,

01:46:25   OS X is awesome.

01:46:28   And to remove or to let rot or to deprecate

01:46:34   a major area of power from it.

01:46:37   I can see why people are worried about that.

01:46:39   And Jon, you know, I agree.

01:46:41   It does seem like things are moving away from that,

01:46:46   from that direction in consumer software design,

01:46:49   mostly by Apple's doing, by the way.

01:46:51   It's not like the whole industry is doing this,

01:46:54   mostly Apple doing this,

01:46:56   but it was in many ways theirs to lose.

01:46:58   They really had amazing automation features

01:47:01   that were fairly accessible to people.

01:47:03   Programmers will always find ways to automate things.

01:47:06   The most extreme power users will always find ways

01:47:10   to automate things, but one of the things that made

01:47:12   this area of OS X so powerful is that it was really

01:47:16   quite accessible to lots of people.

01:47:18   A whole lot of people who are not programmers

01:47:21   were able to use things like Automator to automate

01:47:24   really time consuming tasks that then freed them up

01:47:29   to have the computer do what computers are supposed to do.

01:47:32   The kind of power that usually you have to be a programmer

01:47:35   to have, many people were given this power

01:47:39   by this system and this infrastructure.

01:47:41   So the loss of it, I think, is certainly cause for concern

01:47:46   if you love the Mac operating system as much as I do

01:47:51   for this power that it's always had.

01:47:54   And as I said, I'll be fine because I'm a programmer.

01:47:57   I can use Bash and script something up

01:47:59   or actually write an app to do things

01:48:01   if I need to automate them, which I do all the time.

01:48:04   I hardly ever use these technologies

01:48:06   because I usually just write shell scripts

01:48:07   and stuff instead.

01:48:09   But a lot of people use these, I think.

01:48:11   And even, again, percentage-wise, I'm sure it's very small.

01:48:15   But that still could be like thousands of people

01:48:18   who rely on this to save them like hours of time a week

01:48:22   or to do something that would just be impractical

01:48:23   to do otherwise.

01:48:25   So yeah, I feel the word on this.

01:48:28   That being said, there's a lot about this

01:48:31   that we still don't know.

01:48:33   All we know is that this guy, his job was cut apparently.

01:48:38   We don't know why.

01:48:40   We don't know, maybe they're just reorganizing

01:48:44   the department of whatever it's in.

01:48:46   I don't know how this is organized inside.

01:48:48   Maybe it's just a reorg, maybe it's like

01:48:51   weird cost cutting measures that maybe

01:48:53   they might come back to later.

01:48:54   Who knows?

01:48:55   Maybe it was just like a personal conflict.

01:48:57   Maybe there's a new team doing basically like maybe all of a sudden there's overlap because

01:49:01   you know, we have this automation system, but maybe the Swift people are like, "Oh,

01:49:05   I totally want you to be able to script your applications with Swift and we have this project

01:49:08   and then maybe that project wins."

01:49:09   And so this will be the legacy version of automation and then the Swift one will come.

01:49:13   Another one I've been thinking about in terms of how do you get people who can't program

01:49:16   to be able to do simple automation stuff.

01:49:19   I always feel like the people who are good at using Automator and AppleScript are either

01:49:23   basically programmers already and they don't know it, or could be programmers within 15

01:49:28   minutes.

01:49:29   Because to use, even though Automator is way easier than coding, the people who use it

01:49:33   as part of their job, they eventually can't avoid basically becoming programmers.

01:49:38   They don't know they're programmers, they think they just click buttons, but they're

01:49:40   learning conditionals, loops, logic, input/output, like they're just learning what programmers

01:49:47   would consider to be an awful programming language, which is just clicking a bunch of

01:49:50   buttons around, right? We're just like, let me just write the code, right? But that's—

01:49:54   See, also Excel wizards. Yeah, exactly, right? But another way you could do that is, how do you

01:50:01   get non-programmers to be able to make their computer to do busy work that programmers know

01:50:06   how to make them do? Another way to do it would be to have a conversation with the computer and

01:50:11   describe what you want to have the computer do it. So a much, much, much, much, much, much, much

01:50:16   more advanced Siri. You could say, "Siri, let's have a discussion. I want you to take all the,

01:50:24   when photos arrive in this folder, I want you to take all of them and rename them with the date

01:50:31   and tag them with this label and put them into this folder or something. Something you could

01:50:38   do with Hazel or with Automator. Resize them all to be this size or whatever, blah, blah, blah."

01:50:42   And Siri would go back and forth. "Do you mean like this? Giving you a preview of what you were

01:50:45   you were gonna say, okay, if I was to do it,

01:50:47   this is what I would do.

01:50:48   Does this look like what you wanted?

01:50:49   Like all it would be doing behind the scenes

01:50:51   is using the automation machinery that's already there

01:50:54   and all of the automation you're able to do

01:50:55   for like images easy,

01:50:56   'cause they have so many tools for like resizing images

01:50:58   or changing the exif data or renaming files.

01:51:02   Like that's all easy to do.

01:51:04   All you need to do is figure out a way

01:51:06   to express to the computer what you want.

01:51:07   And if you can have a conversation

01:51:09   with even a pretty stupid Siri

01:51:10   that is nevertheless hundreds of times smarter

01:51:12   than it is now to go back and forth,

01:51:15   Eventually Siri could figure out essentially,

01:51:17   here's the automator action you would have built,

01:51:19   only we built it together by having a conversation.

01:51:21   That is certainly a much more advanced, much brighter,

01:51:24   and I think attainable future

01:51:26   of letting normal people automate stuff.

01:51:28   So for all we know, maybe the future automation

01:51:31   is all wrapped up in the Siri team

01:51:33   and they have grand plans to do that.

01:51:35   I wish them luck because so far

01:51:37   they haven't really shown me anything,

01:51:38   but it could be done.

01:51:40   And so maybe, like I said,

01:51:42   we don't know what's going on at Apple.

01:51:43   It could just be a re-org,

01:51:44   could just be a merging type thing. But I have hope that even if Apple has decided that

01:51:54   every single technology that Sal lists on his website is the past of automation, that

01:51:58   I have some hope that Apple believes that there is something else that is the future

01:52:01   of automation. Because like you said, Marco, people want to use their computers to do complicated

01:52:07   things. But if they're not programmers and don't want to become programmers, we have

01:52:11   to find a way to let them do that, like a gentler slope, to get them to be able to do

01:52:16   that, because they will be happier with their computers and will find them more indispensable,

01:52:19   even if they could perform something as simple as, you know, when I get an email like this,

01:52:25   extract the image attachment, put in this folder, rename it this way, and then send

01:52:30   me a text message about it or do whatever. Like, when you show normal people that they

01:52:35   can make something like that work, they think it is the greatest thing in the world, because

01:52:38   They're basically like, as someone said in the chat room, it's like the gateway drug

01:52:41   to programming, only they never actually go through the gate.

01:52:44   They just stay outside of it and go, "This is great!

01:52:46   My computer does what I want!"

01:52:48   Which I think is great.

01:52:49   So I think there's still need for non-programmers to be able to automate things in their computer,

01:52:55   but I'm willing to believe that there is a better way.

01:52:58   [BEEPING]