360: Big Minimizers


00:00:00   [Intro music]

00:00:13   From Relay FM, this is Upgrade, episode 360.

00:00:18   Today's show is brought to you by TextExpander from Smile, Memberful, and OneBlocker.

00:00:23   My name is Myke Hurley and I'm joined by Jason Snow. Hi, Jason Snow.

00:00:26   Hi, Myke Hurley. How are you?

00:00:28   I'm very good. You know, with this being episode 360, we could have done something interesting with that for the Summer of Fun,

00:00:34   like if we hadn't already done Back to Foreign episode. I guess that would be 180, right?

00:00:39   Right. Or 180.

00:00:40   I guess we already are doing episode 360, but just...

00:00:43   Yeah, we turned all the way around and now it's just straightforward again.

00:00:46   We are doing something very odd for today's Summer of Fun treat. Would you like to explain what we're doing?

00:00:52   This is a very special episode of Upgrade. Very, very special. Now, as you may know, as a listener of Upgrade,

00:00:59   Apple recently, with Apple Music, has really gotten on the lossless audio bandwagon.

00:01:04   They make these albums available lossless and like you can listen and your mind is blown by the fact that there's no MP3 compression or AAC compression.

00:01:13   And of course, there are debates about does it sound better, does it not sound better?

00:01:19   And honestly, we here at Upgrade have received email from one listener saying...

00:01:26   At least one!

00:01:28   Wouldn't at least one, possibly more, probably not, but possibly, saying wouldn't it be amazing if podcasts were lossless?

00:01:39   You could hear every bit of phlegm in my throat before I drink more hot tea.

00:01:46   Why would you do that?

00:01:47   You can hear the frustration building inside Myke's voice when I talk about the phlegm in my throat.

00:01:54   Why?

00:01:55   All of this could be available to you if only we were not cruelly connected to the lossless MP3 juggernaut.

00:02:05   The big MP3, if you will.

00:02:07   Lossy MP3.

00:02:08   Which, sorry, lossy, yes, it takes away... What does it give us? Nothing. It takes away something.

00:02:15   Unclear what. Anyway, this is all my intro to say.

00:02:19   Today's episode, and today's episode only, will be brought to you in lossless audio via the ALAC compression format.

00:02:29   Now, it's not what you're listening to right now if you're listening to it just randomly in your podcast player like usual.

00:02:34   No, that's the MP3 version that we normally do.

00:02:36   Because it would have broken literally everything.

00:02:38   We wouldn't have been able to upload it to the CMS because it wouldn't be an MP3 file.

00:02:42   And everyone would get super mad because there would be like a 300 to 400 megabyte episode downloading.

00:02:49   Which is terrible. Nobody wants that.

00:02:51   That might not sound any different.

00:02:52   So, what we're going to do is we're going to provide an Apple lossless version of this episode.

00:02:57   It is, we have, now you're asking questions, you're saying JSON.

00:03:00   JSON.

00:03:01   But, you know, you can't, just putting the file out lossless doesn't solve the issue if you have lossy sources.

00:03:11   Because then you're just uncompressing a compressed thing and the lossiness is still there.

00:03:17   I hear you.

00:03:18   And that's why I'm also proud to announce that Upgrade is being produced this week, and actually for the last few weeks when I changed what thing I use to record the show,

00:03:27   in entirely the whole stream from beginning to end in lossless format.

00:03:34   So we're recording this losslessly, we will produce it losslessly, and then we will release a version of it.

00:03:39   So you can just marvel at how good this sounds without any compression.

00:03:45   Now, we also understand that for some people, the size of a podcast file might be too great.

00:03:51   And you might be saying to yourself, "Jason and Myke, why do you insist on a high bitrate for Upgrade?

00:03:58   It's just two people talking."

00:04:00   Yeah.

00:04:01   You could use a much lower bitrate, your file sizes would be smaller, and I could save on my download speed and on my download limits by having a smaller podcast file.

00:04:10   Well, for you, we have also provided an excellent, excellent solution just for this episode.

00:04:17   So you can stop the player, everybody stop their players now if you want to listen to one of these special ones,

00:04:22   and you can go to the show notes at relay.fm/upgrade/360.

00:04:27   This is the special Upgrade 360 plan for the summer of fun.

00:04:31   You can get the Alack version or the 56 kbps MP3 version.

00:04:37   And enjoy is what I'm saying. Enjoy. Or you can just keep listening to it like you always do.

00:04:43   I'm gonna offer one more as a special Myke bonus.

00:04:47   Oh, oh, tell me more. But wait, there's more. Upgrade 360 continues.

00:04:51   But wait, wait, there's more. I'm also gonna do an eight.

00:04:55   Eight kilobits per second?

00:04:57   Eight kilobits per second?

00:04:59   Yeah.

00:05:00   Eight kilobits. Sure.

00:05:01   So we were talking about this in the last couple of weeks trying to work out what we would do, and I've been playing around with compressing the audio,

00:05:09   and the lowest I can go down to is eight using the great Fission by Roga Mieba.

00:05:16   And it sounds so hilariously terrible, it might just be worth just checking them out.

00:05:22   We'll put the MP3 files in there. You can tap them and sample them, or you can download them.

00:05:26   And many applications allow you to upload them if you do it for some reason,

00:05:30   or listen to them in your podcast.

00:05:31   The only thing you can't do is don't make this an NFT or something,

00:05:34   because we should probably take that lossless version of Upgrade and auction that off for millions of dollars.

00:05:38   Millions and millions of dollars.

00:05:39   That's how that works, right?

00:05:40   Yep.

00:05:41   Anyway, this is the first and last installment in the Upgrade 360 plan.

00:05:46   No subscription cost required. You just can get it. We're giving it to you.

00:05:51   Relay.fm/upgrade/360 to download your special Upgrade episode 360 souvenir.

00:05:58   I have a #SnailTalk question for you.

00:06:00   Okay.

00:06:01   Marlies wants to know, "Jason, how does it feel to cross the Brimley Cocoon line?"

00:06:06   Oh, man. It's good, Marlies. It's good. Let me explain what the Brimley Cocoon line is.

00:06:11   Wilford Brimley, the actor who recently passed away, he was in a movie called Cocoon in the '80s,

00:06:17   where he played kind of what I think people have in their mind as an old guy.

00:06:23   An old guy and a plot of Cocoon. It's a Ron Howard movie. It's like aliens come to Earth and they want to take old people away,

00:06:29   and the old people will live forever.

00:06:31   It's an '80s movie. It's like a weird E.T. with old people kind of movie.

00:06:37   Anyway, Wilford Brimley, despite seeming to everybody like a very old man in Cocoon,

00:06:43   was actually just a little bit older than 50 when the movie was released.

00:06:48   So there's a funny website and a funny Twitter account that basically looks at people.

00:06:57   You can calculate your own moment when you become 18,530 days old, which is the age Wilford Brimley was when Cocoon was released.

00:07:05   And they tweet out celebrities who cross the Brimley Cocoon line.

00:07:11   So it's a rite of passage. It's not turning 50. It happens a little bit after that, but it's not a birthday.

00:07:18   I had several people when I tweeted about this wish me a happy birthday. It's not my birthday.

00:07:22   But it was fun. I put this on my calendar like a year ago, like, "Oh, that's going to be a day."

00:07:27   And it was a heck of a day. So I crossed it. But you know, I didn't cross it alone.

00:07:30   I crossed it with about a week around me, people who share my age almost exactly.

00:07:36   Matt Damon, Kelly Ripa, Tony Hale from Arrested Development, and most importantly, Amy Jo Johnson, the Pink Power Ranger, who is exactly my age.

00:07:49   So we all went across together, me and Matt Damon and Kelly Ripa and Tony Hale and the Pink Power Ranger.

00:07:54   We all walked across the line, and it's fine over here on the other side of the line.

00:07:58   So yeah, feeling good. Feeling good. And my only regret is that I should have had a big bowl of oatmeal on the day that I crossed the line because Wilford Brimley was a oatmeal spokesman for a very long time.

00:08:11   It was only in this discussion that I realized that Cocoon and Platoon were different movies.

00:08:18   For some reason, I have had those movies completely melded in my mind. I don't know why.

00:08:26   They're not the same.

00:08:28   They're not the same at all. They're not even nearly. I think it's just the sound.

00:08:32   Actually, I really... Okay, let's go with this. Let's expand on this.

00:08:36   So Oliver Stone's Cocoon is a movie in which aliens come down to Vietnam, and they abduct soldiers from Vietnam and teach them how to swim in their zero-gravity swimming pool.

00:08:55   Ron Howard's Platoon is, I don't know, kind of a cross between Apollo 13 and Forrest Gump.

00:09:04   I know that's not a Ron Howard movie, but you know what I'm saying. Anyway, it's just a feel-good movie about people in Vietnam, which is kind of wrong.

00:09:11   But I don't know. Ron Howard, that's what he did. So there you go.

00:09:15   Those are... They might as well be the same movie. They're really pretty much the same. Like Cocoon and Platoon?

00:09:21   Yep. Same thing.

00:09:22   Wilford Brimley. Oh, oh, oh. Wilford Brimley's the drill sergeant.

00:09:25   Yeah.

00:09:26   Yeah.

00:09:28   If you would like to send in a question to help us answer a future episode of the show, just send out a tweet with the hashtag Snail Talk.

00:09:34   I use question mark Snail Talk in the Relay FM members Discord.

00:09:37   Hey, don't forget upgradeyourwardrobe.com. We have three t-shirts that are available for sale right now, on sale right now.

00:09:44   Some are a fun t-shirt, Dongle Town Surf Club t-shirt, and the original Dongle Town t-shirt.

00:09:49   These are available just one more week until July 12th.

00:09:52   So consider this your probable final warning. Go to upgradeyourwardrobe.com to get yourself one of these wonderful t-shirts available for just one more week.

00:10:03   That's right.

00:10:04   Follow up, according to Mark Gurman in his newsletter Power On, I'm starting to think we might need a weekly segment when we talk about...

00:10:11   Power On.

00:10:12   What Mark is writing in his newsletter, which again...

00:10:15   Yeah, that's right. This Week in Gurman. Yep.

00:10:17   There you go. Twig. I think that already exists. Which is, again, I will just underscore, you should subscribe to this newsletter because it's really good and interesting and I love the way that Mark is writing it.

00:10:27   But according to Mark's newsletter this week, Apple are looking at opening more satellite offices in places in the US and elsewhere to allow for work to be more distributed outside of Silicon Valley.

00:10:39   I will quote Mark Gurman, "I'm told that executives at the highest levels of the company recognize that hiring and retaining talent will be one of the biggest challenges to its future success and reducing its reliance on the valley is a key step in mitigating that issue."

00:10:53   Yeah, this is... I mean, I don't think anybody really believed that Apple was completely clueless and didn't understand the issues that are facing it as much as it is this question of like, does the culture kind of override that and are the executives at high levels sort of pushing against that?

00:11:11   But Gurman's report here basically says they get it. There is going to be a serious problem and it's going to be ongoing in terms of losing people and in terms of hiring talented people who are not going to want to move to California and work every day inside an office in Cupertino.

00:11:27   Not that everybody will. Obviously, they've got hardware design and other groups that will be in Apple Park locked behind several security doors and that'll be their job, but there are lots of other parts of Apple where they are going to risk losing people if they aren't more flexible.

00:11:42   And so Gurman's story is mostly about offices in other places, which is part of the story, right? Part of the story is, I don't want to move to California or I don't want to stay in California, that kind of thing.

00:11:54   So they're like, how about Austin, Texas? How about Seattle? How about other cities? The question I've got is, is Apple's view of the future of work at Apple that they'll have various groups in various places and you will have to move to whatever city that is to work in that office in order to get a job with them?

00:12:13   Is it a little more dispersed where it's like, you've got to come into one of our offices, but it doesn't have to be the same office as everybody else? They can all be in different offices and then you collaborate remotely.

00:12:23   But if you do that, then do you need to be in an office at all? It's unclear. I think the answer is it's really complicated. Apple is a huge company. Apple has a bunch of different jobs, all of which have their own dynamics in terms of what collaboration you need and how much physical presence you need and all of that.

00:12:42   So I walked away from this, one, being more optimistic that Germin is using his sources to say they get it. They get what their challenges are. They get their competition. It's going to make it harder for Apple to insist that everybody move to and work in Cupertino in an office.

00:13:00   They already understand that. They're already investing in these campuses elsewhere and they realize that they're going to have to adapt even more than that. So that's all good.

00:13:10   My other reaction to it is I still think that Tim Cook's statement to employees was a mistake. Last week, we talked about how, or at least I mentioned in passing that I didn't think that the employee petition that got circulated was particularly well-written and it was eye-rolling, even though the points they were making were good.

00:13:31   I felt like it was kind of officious and we are formally requesting and things like that that I thought were kind of dumb and that they've gotten the details of their mess of their language have been picked on and it sometimes distracts from the importance of what they were trying to convey.

00:13:47   I do want to tone police Tim Cook a little bit though because my other frustration here is I keep coming back to the fact that Tim Cook put out, I think it was a video, but basically said to Apple employees a very happy talk kind of statement, the kind of which you would see in Apple marketing except directed at Apple employees.

00:14:06   And it was, we know you can't wait to come back to the office. And the reason that a lot of employees get really angry is they don't want to come back to the office and Tim Cook was pretending like everybody is the same and they all want to come back to the office.

00:14:21   And I think again, wow, that could have been a more sympathetic video and then a lot of this would have gone away. But instead, I feel like whoever put that statement together was thinking more about marketing than about maybe that there were some real issues with different kinds of employees and that there was going to be more sensitivity required than was on offer with the super happy talk statement that he made.

00:14:49   And I just look at that and think it didn't need to be this way. You didn't need to rile people up like this. And so if Gurman's reports are right, that there's actually a lot of realism within Apple about how work has to change at Apple, then that makes a lot more sense.

00:15:04   It just doesn't jibe too much with Tim Cook's thing where he could have been much more and we've seen him be much more sympathetic. He could have said, we understand that we've learned a lot in this last year and we're going to keep looking at this, you know, talk to your manager.

00:15:20   We're going to go, you know, if you're somebody who's required to be in the office, we're not going to make you be here five days a week. It could have been a whole lot more, I guess, a little softer and a little more expansive and understanding that different people have different situations.

00:15:36   Instead, it was very simple, up with people, yay everybody, you all want to come back to work. And now that's the part that I find the most perplexing is I'm not sure what Tim Cook stated really jibes so much with what Mark Gurman is reporting.

00:15:51   I wonder if Tim Cook has a different opinion to these other executives.

00:15:58   It's possible.

00:16:00   He might be one of these like butts in seats kind of people.

00:16:05   It could be that I definitely had bosses like that, right? I had a boss who actually liked and I was a pretty good boss in a bunch of ways and he rolled in and said, I don't want anybody to work from home anymore.

00:16:18   I want to see butts in seats. We're paying for this office. I want to see heads here. Every time I fly in from the East Coast and sweep through the office, I want to be able to glance cursorily across the editorial group and see heads in above the cube walls here.

00:16:34   Like it is the most surface kind of demand was like literally I just when I'm randomly here for five minutes out of every month, I want to see people here.

00:16:44   And like I said, he was actually a pretty good boss, but that was just he was not a believer in remote work.

00:16:51   And I yeah, that's possible. It's possible that that Tim Cook or even other people at high levels who I'll point out are only interacting with a certain Strata of Apple employees in certain groups at certain levels and are possibly quite insulated from the rest of this.

00:17:09   And so maybe Tim believes it but it also could just be that at a high level when there's an all company communication. The idea is we're going to keep it as broad as possible and as happy as possible and then under the surface.

00:17:21   We're going to let all the messiness of individual managers needing to make individual decisions happen. That's entirely possible.

00:17:28   There was a good piece by Charlie Worzel that I want to mention in his newsletter Galaxy Brain that talks about these issues. I thought in a really smart way and about why it's important to listen to your employees because you don't really want to be a company that says because I said so and your employees are unhappy with that that employees are a big part of making company culture and making companies successful company without employees is just sort of an empty building.

00:17:54   So I recommend that piece as well. And one of the things that Mark Gurman mentions is that Apple also is recognizing that their commitment to increasing the diversity of Apple is their lack of flexibility in terms of location and workspace is actually one of the things that's fighting against their attempts to diversify their workforce.

00:18:18   Because it's so expensive to live in Silicon Valley and you end up hiring people who are less diverse because they're the people who oftentimes have the most money or wherewithal to afford to survive in the high cost of living that is Silicon Valley.

00:18:35   There's a lot. It's complicated. We've said about it before. It's complicated.

00:18:54   Not to bring up our friend James Thompson again, but his story is a pretty famous one because he was working on the OS 10 finder and he was working at an office at Apple but in Cork Ireland and Steve Jobs said you have to move to California or you can't work at Apple anymore and James quit.

00:19:11   And that's an example where James is not a work from home example. James is actually a working at an Apple facility example and that's sort of what Mark Gurman is talking about here which is Apple is at the very least trying to do that.

00:19:24   And I think they are spurred on by in the last five or 10 years knowing the high cost of living in the Bay Area and the fact that they probably have lots of candidates who really want to work at Apple and Apple really wants them to work there.

00:19:36   But they're not going to move to California. They're just not going to do it. They look at it the uprooting their family and also the cost of living and they say well forget about it.

00:19:45   And that's why Apple is building this huge campus in Austin and they've built out offices in other places. So that is a cultural change from sort of the Steve Jobs model when he came back that they are making the question is sort of like is that it you know,

00:20:00   and I don't think it is Gurman's report really sort of says they're looking at everything but I think it's left open. He also mentions that there's very much this hedge in the statement which is like after a year,

00:20:10   you know, we'll see how this goes next year almost like nobody really knows how it's going to go and what the rules are going to be going forward.

00:20:17   So I don't know but Gurman's report is the most in-depth people inside Apple how Apple views this that I've seen so it's worth a read.

00:20:29   They're building a campus in London too.

00:20:31   Oh sure.

00:20:32   Like they're doing it in lots of places. Maybe it's just possible.

00:20:35   And there are already offices in London. There's somebody I know who is an Apple employee.

00:20:38   They have lots of offices in London.

00:20:40   Yeah, I mean the person I know had to leave. He's listening undoubtedly had to leave for some visa reasons and spend time outside of the US before returning to the US and my understanding is that he's you know Apple was just like okay,

00:20:54   you'll work out of London in the meantime right like that and Apple's been good, you know on that level Apple actually has been flexible and good to its employees and I think that's pretty great.

00:21:04   So and obviously Apple has had a lot of success during the pandemic in doing a bunch of stuff remotely too.

00:21:10   So I think a lot of the anger about this from people other than the employees themselves is did Apple learn anything from this or is Apple trying to go back to business as usual and you know,

00:21:20   we'll see but Germin's report suggests that Apple was already realizing that some of their cultural stuff was going to have to change and they have been changing it and perhaps the pandemic will just accelerate that.

00:21:31   This episode of Upgrade is brought to you by TextExpander from our friends at Smile.

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00:23:00   Our thanks to TextExpander from Smile for their support of this show and Relay FM.

00:23:04   So for some upstream news this week, Jason, I want to talk about some acquisitions going on in Podcastland.

00:23:10   Oh boy.

00:23:11   So Alex Cooper's Call Her Daddy, which I don't like saying out loud, podcast is going to become a Spotify exclusive, leaving Barstool Sports.

00:23:21   This is a multiple year deal estimated at around $60 million total over three years.

00:23:28   This podcast was, even for people that didn't listen to it, became very in the news, at least in the podcast world a couple of years ago

00:23:38   because there was a big blow up between the two hosts of the show and Cooper remained.

00:23:43   And it was also a big blow up of Barstool Sports as well.

00:23:46   Spotify is going to co-produce the show with Cooper directly.

00:23:51   The episodes will not be available outside of Spotify.

00:23:54   I just want to underscore that a second.

00:23:56   $60 million over three years.

00:23:58   Yeah, for a podcast that will be, you're basically forcing people to listen to Spotify, which is, that's what they want to do.

00:24:06   That's what they want to do.

00:24:07   And I believe, I think Variety reported on this, I think I got this correct.

00:24:11   This is the largest podcast deal for a female led show so far.

00:24:17   Yeah. Yeah. It's interesting.

00:24:19   Also the co-production thing, which sort of leads me to believe that that was also Spotify sweetening their offer and saying,

00:24:24   look, we know that you're using Barstool for this and we will provide resources, presumably editing and all that kind of stuff so that you don't have to worry about any of that.

00:24:35   And she may also have decided she didn't want to do what a lot of people are doing and sort of set up a whole podcasting infrastructure, at least right away.

00:24:45   And was like, okay, Spotify will help me out here, which is, yeah, sure. That will be a way to sweeten the deal too.

00:24:51   And then additionally, Amazon, we'll come back to that in a minute.

00:24:55   Amazon acquires the rights to the Smartless podcast.

00:24:59   This is hosted by Will Arnett, Jason Bateman and Sean Hayes.

00:25:03   Three famous comedy and sometimes dramatic actors.

00:25:07   Big, big blockbuster actors.

00:25:09   This was started in the pandemic project where they interview other people.

00:25:16   It is the most from a, I'm not trying to be disparaging, but from a format perspective, the most cookie cutter of celebrity podcasts.

00:25:27   But it's hosted by three very funny people.

00:25:31   Right. I'm sure that when I first heard about this show, I was like, oh, and then I heard it was an interview show and was like, no, I don't want it.

00:25:38   Right. Like if it was just the three of them, I think I would have been more interested in it.

00:25:42   Right. That's neither here nor there.

00:25:44   This deal by Amazon is estimated to be worth between 60 to 80 million dollars.

00:25:51   Yep.

00:25:52   It includes a first look on other podcast projects from the company that has now been created by the three hosts.

00:25:59   But this show will only have time exclusivity.

00:26:03   So new episodes appear on Amazon Music and Wondery Plus one week before they're then available everywhere.

00:26:11   So you may remember Amazon Music, which is where you get podcasts, bought Wondery a while ago.

00:26:18   The very large podcast producer.

00:26:20   Wondery has a membership program that has an app which is called Wondery Plus and you'll be able to listen to it there too.

00:26:26   So this this deal, let's just say for the sake of it, it was 80 million.

00:26:31   I think this is the biggest deal that I can think of that hasn't required exclusivity to it.

00:26:39   Huh.

00:26:40   I can't recall something this large where it's still been available elsewhere.

00:26:45   Like you could argue Gimlet, but Gimlet was a lot of shows and all of the new stuff seems to be locked behind Spotify's doors.

00:26:55   This is one podcast.

00:26:57   I would say this is the most extreme deal.

00:26:59   Although although the 60 million dollar deal for Alex Cooper was also that's a pretty extreme deal too.

00:27:05   But this is this is I think anybody in the podcast industry would look at this price and say it doesn't actually make sense.

00:27:15   No.

00:27:16   But this is it's a little bit like when we talk on upstream about about video streaming services, like there's a couple of different kinds of value.

00:27:28   There is the value of the property.

00:27:33   And then there is the money you're spending in order to build a business or keep a business or I've talked to here before about the enormous amount of money being spent on sports TV rights, which has a lot to do with the fact that live sports is one of those things that is one of the things that holds people to a traditional cable or satellite TV account or could potentially move them to streaming.

00:27:58   And so you end up spending more money than you can make directly off the product because you're the argument is it's bigger picture than that, right?

00:28:07   The argument is this isn't about about the smart list podcast and whatever other stuff that they do.

00:28:13   It's about adding a tool for Amazon to do whatever their podcast strategy is and to to have, you know, have more content that is following their strategy and their approach.

00:28:27   That's what has to be behind this, right? Because it doesn't make any logical sense.

00:28:31   They're never going to make 80 million dollars off of the smart list podcast directly, right? It's not going to happen.

00:28:37   No, you would not make that amount of money in ads over a three year period.

00:28:43   I just can't imagine it.

00:28:46   You can make companies can make good money on ads, but I just I can't.

00:28:51   I mean, I don't know how large a listenership is, but that is absolutely obscene. You know, like companies, podcast companies don't make that kind of money in a over a three year period, right?

00:29:03   Let alone just one show.

00:29:06   Like this is this is is more about, I guess, putting your flag in the ground.

00:29:12   But that's why the the non exclusivity part is so wild to me.

00:29:18   Like, I'm sure they're going to say Amazon music, Amazon music a bunch of times on the show, right?

00:29:24   I'm sure that they are contractually obliged to do so. But if you're still listening in Apple podcasts, why would you care?

00:29:32   Right. Like it's like, all right, whatever. Like, it's like if you just say the network that you're a part of. Right.

00:29:37   Like it doesn't mean anything, really. Right. Like, you know, people could just listen to this one show only.

00:29:46   They hear me say relay FM. It doesn't make a difference to them. They're not going to now be like, oh, well, let me go and listen on the relay FM website instead. Right.

00:29:53   Like it's like it doesn't do anything. I think I find that I find that particular thing so strange.

00:29:59   I think that we are I mean, this is not news to anybody that pays attention to the industry.

00:30:05   We are 100 percent in an acquisition bubble right now.

00:30:08   Yeah. I don't think the podcasting industry is in a bubble because I think that a lot of it is very is actually quite healthy right now.

00:30:15   But this this acquisition stuff, it's it's definitely a bubble.

00:30:20   Well, I mean, this is what I was saying is is bubbles are often created by outside influence that is making things seem more valuable than they are because they're ascribing value to it that is strategic.

00:30:33   Yeah. Rather than the actual value of the thing. And you know what?

00:30:37   If smart lists can make 60 or 80 million bucks, then great. But, you know, realistically, it won't.

00:30:46   And it's more of a strategy thing that is causing Apple to do it or sorry, Amazon to do this.

00:30:51   My understanding, by the way, I don't know about Apple, but like there were multiple all the tech giants and podcast giants were totally bidding for this.

00:30:58   Right. Like there were stories about how this was a this was a hot thing.

00:31:02   And and so you also have the inflation where Amazon is like, oh, we're not going to get beaten out for this one. We're going to win this one.

00:31:10   Like, OK, well, you know, you're paying even more money for this thing, which again, not to say anything about the podcast.

00:31:16   It's just like they walk away with cash like the cash is still good, even if the motivation for it is is not, I think, solely about the value of the thing, but about part of a larger strategy.

00:31:28   So it is fascinating. And yeah, it's you've got tech giants with enormous amounts of money and they are jockeying for position and supremacy.

00:31:37   And of course, that has you know, that multiplies the value of all these things to them even.

00:31:43   And what you end up is a situation where it only makes sense if you're a giant who has invested way more value in the strategy part of this.

00:31:51   Nobody else is going to be a winning bidder of these things because everybody else is going to look at it and go, yeah, I could probably give you.

00:32:00   You know, a 10 million a year guarantee or 20 million a year guarantee, but then Amazon rolls up and they're like, here's 80 million.

00:32:09   Yeah, I can't say no. Amazon has also acquired the podcast hosting and advertising platform on 19.

00:32:16   Yeah, I think 19 hosts all of all of the podcast that Apple does itself to like host a lot of it does host a lot of podcasts.

00:32:25   So it's you know, it's got the servers that are generating the RSS feeds and generating the downloads.

00:32:29   And then they are also an advertising platform. Our old pal Lex Friedman works at 19 work works works Amazon now works at Amazon now.

00:32:39   Yes. My understanding is that a bunch of Amazon Prime packages came to his house last week and now he works for Amazon.

00:32:45   That's how that works. So yeah, Amazon making some moves here.

00:32:51   I find Amazon's podcast strategy a little baffling because they have Amazon music and they have audible.

00:32:57   I mean, and they have wondering and they have art 19. I imagine that this will coalesce in some way.

00:33:02   But my my concern is is the podcast aren't music.

00:33:08   And I know Spotify also is like, well, no, there's one Spotify and it has music and it has podcasts in it.

00:33:14   My concern though, is that if you're especially if your brand is music like Amazon music podcast don't fit with the brand.

00:33:20   So unless Apple or Amazon changes the brand like Apple music, there's Apple podcast and Apple music.

00:33:26   There's Spotify, which they're redefining then there's Amazon music. I'm like, okay, podcasts are in Amazon music.

00:33:32   Really Spotify. I'm fine with because they don't like I think of it as music, but the branding doesn't force it.

00:33:39   Amazon music doesn't make any sense. And they have audible. Yeah, I don't understand.

00:33:45   And I don't understand. So there's probably more to come there. You've got to think so, considering that they just bought 19.

00:33:51   It's a super interesting, by the way, just like if you at the moment, pretty much all of the medium to large podcast companies host at one of two places.

00:34:03   Art 19, a megaphone. Megaphone is now owned by Spotify and art 19 is owned by Amazon.

00:34:10   These are I would be uncomfortable in that circumstance because now these companies, they've got a different kind of, I don't know, like outlook on you, especially because a lot of these companies that hosted these places use both art 19 or megaphone for advertising sales as well.

00:34:29   They're like, they're both platforms. Like we host at Libsyn. All I've already hosted at Libsyn. And Libsyn are independent.

00:34:38   They've been making a bunch of acquisitions themselves, which is interesting. But as it stands right now, uncomfortable there.

00:34:45   But if like, I don't know, Google bought Libsyn, I would start to be like, I don't know if my values align with your corporate values.

00:34:54   But then things start to get really uncomfortable. All the hosting platforms are being bought now as well. It's like, it's just a gold rush.

00:35:01   Yeah. Yeah. And that's the way to put it, right? That you call it a bubble, call it a gold rush, but you've got tech giants and it's not just the tech giants think that there's money to be made in podcasting, but it's also that it's like, we don't want to be left behind and our enemies are investing in it.

00:35:18   So we're also investing in it. It's kind of fascinating to see this happening. You know, Google, I would say Google's podcast strategy thus far has been incoherent, but they keep trying.

00:35:29   Amazon's podcasting strategy has been kind of cryptic and confusing. Remember, Audible did all those podcasts that were like, is this a podcast or not?

00:35:38   But it's on Audible and now it's a podcast. And it's very confusing. They've got these different companies with different strategies. I don't entirely understand it.

00:35:45   Maybe it will become clearer in time, but I think that's always the danger, right? Is you think maybe it'll become clearer and sometimes it does because there's a real strategy behind it.

00:35:54   And sometimes it doesn't because it really is just the gold rush part, which is we just are going to do this and see what happens because we don't want to get left behind.

00:36:02   And you would hope with all this money being thrown around that there would be a strategy here.

00:36:07   Back in June, we were expecting to see a new MacBook Pro. And I think a lot of the time recently, it's been a lot of questions of, hey, where is that new MacBook Pro?

00:36:16   According to a report from Digitimes, we could be looking at a September launch for the 14 and 16 inch M1 based or M1X based Apple Silicon base, it's better to say, MacBook Pros.

00:36:29   Suppliers are ramping up for third quarter shipments. It seems like mini LED is maybe the thing that has made this slow this down a little bit.

00:36:40   It seems incredibly likely that these machines will feature mini LED displays now. I, at least when I was reading this, I couldn't remember that that was the thing that we'd expected.

00:36:50   Like it was something people thought, but now it seems pretty clear that they will feature mini LED displays, which is really interesting.

00:36:57   Can you imagine the demand if they're like, this is basically an XDR in a laptop and it's got this new Apple Silicon chip that's way faster than the M1, like people are going to go nuts for that.

00:37:08   And that might be why we're waiting until September because Apple seemed to have been trying to improve the production of the mini LED displays that they've been getting for the iPad Pro.

00:37:19   They have been, according to some reports from Digitimes and others, struggling to keep the quality up to produce the iPad Pro screen at the scale that they need.

00:37:30   So they have actually been investing, Apple have invested reportedly $200 million into one of their manufacturing partners to put new machines and practices in place on the production line.

00:37:42   So they can have enough to fulfill this MacBook Pro. Because look, the MacBook Pro is, we know that laptops is Apple's best selling Macs.

00:37:52   So you've got the MacBook Air and the MacBook Pro, right? The MacBook Pro obviously sells very well for them.

00:37:56   There's already pent up demand and these machines are probably going to be incredible in so many ways, including that screen.

00:38:03   So funnily enough, like one of the things I'm sure that will be making this machine a hotter prospect is the thing that might actually be holding this machine up.

00:38:13   So super intriguing. I'm a little bummed that I have to wait until September because I am super excited to see what this machine is going to look like.

00:38:20   It could be a busy end of the year.

00:38:22   Yeah, I think it's going to be really exciting to see next steps for Apple Silicon. We've talked about it. We've seen step one.

00:38:33   But step one was very impressive, but it was also step one. So what's the next step?

00:38:37   And if you throw in something like this mini LED stuff, which is pretty amazing on the iPad Pro, and you throw it on a laptop, I think pro users to get that.

00:38:47   I mean, I can not only see all the Apple demos that will come out of it. It's like a lot of high definition or high dynamic range video demos, video editing demos in Final Cut Pro on that thing.

00:38:57   But yeah, I think that'll be really popular.

00:38:59   But how much is it going to suck if they do all of that, but they still don't have a good display to show you other than the Pro Display XDR, right?

00:39:06   Because, you know, it's like, hey, look how fantastic this is.

00:39:08   And then you plug it into this Dell monitor and you lose all the fantasticness of your beautiful laptop screen.

00:39:13   I know. I know.

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00:41:16   The Mac OS Public Beta is now available, and we've also hit Developer Beta 2 as well last week.

00:41:23   Right.

00:41:24   And you wrote a, uh, what would you call this? You say like a first look.

00:41:28   This is obviously not a review.

00:41:30   It's like a review of the first beta, but it's not done, so it's not really a review.

00:41:36   Yeah, a preview, a first look, something like that.

00:41:39   You talked about this with Federico last week on Connected, where he, it's sort of a draft or a beta test of his iOS review.

00:41:50   Because he wrote a long thing about iOS, and I wrote this thing about Mac OS, and it's very much that.

00:41:57   Which is, a portion of this will be recycled into my Mac OS review in the fall.

00:42:03   And yet, very quickly, I have to write first thoughts because I want to time that to the public beta.

00:42:10   So it is kind of like, well, you can see the structure of it too, where I go into detail on a few kind of like headline items,

00:42:17   and then I've got this grab bag of other stuff, and then I say, and then there's all this other stuff that I'm not even going to talk about because there's not enough time.

00:42:26   And I've got the summer to worry about the other stuff.

00:42:30   How much usage have you had realistically with Monterey so far?

00:42:36   Not an enormous amount. I installed it on the iMac, on the M1 iMac, and have been using it over there and have done some stuff.

00:42:44   But it's not my primary because I'm just not at the point where I'm going to deal with that.

00:42:48   And rather than rebooting into a beta, I just have the beta on this iMac for now.

00:42:56   And so I spent some time with it, but it is not one of those things where I've truly like lived with it every day for a while.

00:43:04   That time is coming, but we're not there yet.

00:43:08   And in fact, when I do it, assuming that I can hold onto this iMac for a little bit longer,

00:43:13   that's my plan is to sort of put it on my desk using the Monterey beta and try to do my job with it as much as possible without breaking, you know, podcasts and stuff.

00:43:26   So last year I ended up in a situation where toward the last part of the summer, I installed Monterey on my, or Big Sur at that point, on my iMac.

00:43:36   And what I ended up having to do for a few months was use my, use a different computer to do my podcast because it wasn't going to work with that computer.

00:43:48   So we'll see, you know, that's always the challenge, right?

00:43:51   Is that our production machines are also our test machines, and that can be really dangerous because sometimes what we want to test properly also breaks the thing we do for a living.

00:44:02   So I'm going to have to figure that one out.

00:44:04   But I've spent a bit of time with it, but not enough.

00:44:07   That's what the rest of the summer is for.

00:44:09   Before we talk about anything else in Monterey, let's just get Safari out of the way.

00:44:13   We talked about it here.

00:44:16   We've spoken about it and all of your favorite tech podcasts and tech influencers.

00:44:21   I don't know why I decided to call people on Twitter that, but that's what I've done.

00:44:24   Techfluencers.

00:44:26   Like everyone's favorite tech influencer, John Siracusa.

00:44:28   You know, you've seen people talking about it, reload buttons, the shape and size of them.

00:44:32   Sure. And the direction they go.

00:44:34   The direction they go, yeah.

00:44:35   Oh man, nobody loves that more than me.

00:44:38   It should be clockwise or counterclockwise.

00:44:40   Woo hoo hoo. Boy, that's hot stuff.

00:44:42   Watch what you say and keep reloading the webpage.

00:44:44   Yep.

00:44:45   How are you feeling about Safari on the Mac?

00:44:49   I think Safari 15 has got a lot of problems.

00:44:54   I think it's misplaced priorities.

00:44:56   I am still optimistic that there is a battle going on inside Apple about this.

00:45:03   I think Apple has been more open and understanding about criticism of this than I've seen for most things that they've rolled out in recent years.

00:45:14   I think that I ascribe that to a feeling inside Apple that they're not even sure that this is the right idea.

00:45:21   At least some people aren't.

00:45:23   I think that there's probably a lot of internal debate going on.

00:45:26   So as Federico said on Connected last week, it's our job to kind of pile some evidence up and say,

00:45:32   yes, the outside people on the outside agree with the people on the inside who think this is a bad idea.

00:45:38   I think my big complaint with it on the Mac is that they're making so many sacrifices in order to eke out a few pixels of extra vertical space.

00:45:46   And I get that vertical space is important because most Mac monitors are widescreen.

00:45:51   But like even the smallest Mac monitor is a 13 at this point.

00:45:55   Like there's room for two rows of Chrome at the top of the screen.

00:46:01   There's room. I actually have my toolbar favorites showing.

00:46:05   So I have three rows of Chrome at the top of my screen on my Mac.

00:46:08   And I'll grant you, I have a 27 inch here, but I also have the 13 inch MacBook Air.

00:46:14   I just don't understand how you decrease readability, especially of tabs so much.

00:46:21   I think it's just a huge mistake.

00:46:23   I think that if I had to boil down to one criticism of Safari 15 on Mac, it's that they built this feature for iCloud tabs that suggests that tabs are important and that people use them.

00:46:37   And yet they made a visual redesign that makes tabs almost impossible to read and scan and understand.

00:46:46   And it's like there's a group of people who understand how people use Safari and there's a group of people who don't care how people use Safari.

00:46:53   They just want to do this cool thing where they hide everything in inside a very small space.

00:46:59   And I know that people have criticized that as a trend that Apple has where they put everything in junk drawer in order to make it seem like it's organized.

00:47:08   It's very much like hiding things in a junk drawer or pushing everything under your bed.

00:47:12   Like if the room is clean, if you don't look in the places where the room is a disaster and Safari is kind of like that.

00:47:18   And I just don't, I say, I don't understand the impulse.

00:47:22   It's like I understand the impulse to simplify, but I don't understand that impulse overriding usability.

00:47:29   If you think tabs are important, why have you made it so that tabs are very hard to read and that get cut off?

00:47:36   The text of a tab gets cut off almost immediately because there's no space for the tabs to be drawn.

00:47:42   It doesn't make any sense to me.

00:47:43   That tab interface where they shrink the tabs down, right, that I think is actually visually worse on the iPad because the iPad screen is smaller than most Mac screens.

00:47:55   Like the 11 inch iPad, when I'm using the Magic Keyboard, a lot of the time I'm accidentally closing tabs rather than opening them because it snaps to the X.

00:48:05   But I really liked something that you said, which was how can the same company to develop tab groups create an interface design that makes tabs unreadable?

00:48:13   Like I think that really crystallizes it.

00:48:15   That's a big question.

00:48:16   I think they did too many things at once.

00:48:19   I think they should have picked one of these two things this year.

00:48:22   You either redesign tabs or do tab groups.

00:48:26   Don't do them both at the same time.

00:48:27   Like it wasn't, I think it was too much.

00:48:29   I love tab groups.

00:48:30   I think it's a great idea.

00:48:31   I think it's implemented really well.

00:48:33   There are things I would like to tweak, but overall, like I think it's a fantastic feature.

00:48:38   And I can't wait to have it on all of my devices rather than just on my iPad.

00:48:42   But it's difficult.

00:48:46   Like overall, I think the way that they've made all of the design changes has made Safari a little bit trickier to handle, which is frustrating to a lot of people.

00:48:56   Yeah, I just don't understand how you can have those two sets of priorities where you think tabs are important.

00:49:02   But you also think tabs are so unimportant.

00:49:04   Let's call it what it is.

00:49:06   So unimportant that their legibility doesn't matter in terms of the change in color backgrounds, that finding them on your screen doesn't matter because they hop all around and change size, that the active one doesn't display the name of the page you're on.

00:49:18   It just displays the URL and the big one, which is that after you've got more than like two or three tabs open, you literally can't tell the pages apart because you can only see the first word of whatever tab is not selected.

00:49:30   Plus the cognitive, I'll throw in the cognitive dissonance of the fact that you have a site like Macworld that is blue, but you're on a site that's got a red header.

00:49:38   And then you're looking for Macworld.

00:49:39   You can't look for the blue because it's not blue.

00:49:41   It's red.

00:49:42   That tab is red because the page you're on is red, even though that page that you're going to is blue.

00:49:47   And that it's like, oh, I don't know.

00:49:50   Again, we could argue about the validity of what they're going for here, but I think it comes back to for what?

00:50:00   What do we gain by all of this sacrifice?

00:50:04   And the answer is, I don't know, a little bit of height on the browser window, which like nobody was asking for on the Mac.

00:50:13   Nobody was asking for it.

00:50:14   So I think it's, yeah, it's bad.

00:50:16   It's bad and they should feel bad.

00:50:18   And I really hope that they get enough feedback that there is enough fortitude within Apple to enough courage to realize that they blew it and either fix it or undo it.

00:50:33   And I actually, something I said in that review that I will say here too, which is the act of cowardice is to just make an option to turn it off because what they need to do is fix it because it's bad.

00:50:47   - No, I don't want to say.

00:50:49   - Right, right, this is what I'm saying is, I mean, because I hear people like, just make me have a setting to go back the way it was.

00:50:54   It's like, you know, that's not the issue here.

00:50:56   The issue here is that this interface is bad.

00:50:59   Making a setting to turn it off doesn't do anything to the fact that the interface is bad.

00:51:04   And if it's the default, it's going to be inflicted on people from the beginning.

00:51:07   And like, that is running away from the issue, which is you got to own up to the fact that you took your shot, you made a bold step.

00:51:14   I admire what you did.

00:51:16   It doesn't work and you either got to fix it or you got to throw it away.

00:51:20   But hiding it or hiding your mistake by saying, well, you can just opt out if you want to, it's not good enough.

00:51:27   - No, I don't think a setting is the right call.

00:51:32   And I usually don't with this kind of stuff.

00:51:34   It's kind of, you got to commit.

00:51:35   - Right.

00:51:36   Well, again, I think that, look, there are times where it's like natural scrolling, right?

00:51:41   Whereas like, well, there's really two ways to do this.

00:51:44   And we have a preferred way, but we understand that a lot of people for her the other way, and we're going to let people choose how they want to do it.

00:51:49   But something like this, it's like a fundamental part of the interface of the app.

00:51:53   And they want to make a preference that's like, don't change.

00:51:58   And like, well, first off, it's obvious that that's going to go away at some point or you're maintaining two separate interfaces.

00:52:04   And in this case, I don't think it's a fundamental, like, well, some people are illegible tab people and other people are legible tab people.

00:52:12   Like that's a false choice between two options.

00:52:15   The reason you're offering it is because your new option is bad.

00:52:20   So you want people to be able to escape it.

00:52:22   Well, that's not the right thing to do.

00:52:25   The right thing to do is fix your bad decisions and make them better.

00:52:29   - How do you feel about using shortcuts on the Mac?

00:52:33   Like if you've been building stuff and trying things out that maybe are more Mac focused than some of the shortcuts you've built in the past?

00:52:41   - So I haven't spent a lot of time with this mostly because shortcuts has been unstable, the interface itself.

00:52:46   And because I turned off iCloud syncing on my new devices so that they don't mess up my shortcuts on my other devices.

00:52:52   Although honestly, at this point, I'm probably going to rethink that because I've spent 99% of my time on the beta on my iPad instead of using,

00:53:01   I expected to be using the other iPad that was not running the beta because the beta was going to be too much of a mess and it's not.

00:53:08   And so I've been sticking with that iPad at which point I realized-

00:53:11   - I found iPadOS to be incredibly stable.

00:53:15   - Yeah. So I think at this point I may turn it back on.

00:53:18   I think what's going to end up happening for me a lot of the time is that I've implemented shortcuts and I've implemented automation on the Mac in a different way.

00:53:28   And I wrote about this on Six Colors a while ago where I realized like a lot of the automation that I was doing on the Mac was like way more kind of hacky and tricky in order to get it to do stuff that was just kind of built into shortcuts.

00:53:42   So my, and I took one of those things that I built where I have a way to do it on the Mac, but I also built a shortcut to do it.

00:53:49   And I ran it on a Monterey using shortcuts instead of using my Mac method.

00:53:56   And it ran the first time. So my guess is the first thing I'm going to do is probably try to adopt as many existing shortcuts that I've built as possible on the Mac because they already work.

00:54:09   Step two is what about all the other stuff I'm doing like an automator and moving that over to shortcuts, which should be fairly straightforward to do that.

00:54:19   Because most of that stuff is using shell scripts and there is a shell script command inside shortcuts.

00:54:25   I think where I'm going to end up, and this is something that I've been meaning to write about and I just sort of haven't gotten to it yet, but there's a platform detection thing in shortcuts where it'll say like, what device is this?

00:54:37   And it returns Mac or iPad or iPhone.

00:54:41   So I think what I'm going to do in the long run is I'm going to have single shortcuts that do tasks. And if I can't do them the same way on Mac and iPad, I will write into the shortcut, if I possibly can, do this on Mac, do this on iPad.

00:55:01   And if I can get that to work, I think that would be the ideal is then I only have one thing that I'm using and updating and it goes across even if not all the steps are the same between the two platforms.

00:55:12   So I'm excited about it.

00:55:15   It's really early days yet because like I said, I'm not living with it. And it's my existing Mac that's got all the different automator things built in.

00:55:23   But again, automator for me, automator is almost entirely just a conduit to AppleScript and shell scripts because Apple built integration with like the finder into services and quick actions based on automator.

00:55:39   Like automator is how you get into a finder contextual menu.

00:55:42   So I put all of my stuff inside automator.

00:55:45   Well, in Monterey, automator and shortcuts will get you into that menu.

00:55:50   So I'll probably just start converting all of those things so that they run out of shortcuts instead.

00:55:54   But it'll be easy because what it's really doing is firing off a bunch of scripts, whether they be AppleScripts or shell scripts or Python scripts or Perl scripts or whatever.

00:56:06   You were kind of talking about like shortcuts seeming to get more powerful on the Mac over time because Mac automation can just, you know, just in general, just do a bunch of stuff when apps aren't open, things in the background, all that kind of stuff.

00:56:23   And shortcuts seems to be taking advantage of that.

00:56:27   One of the things I was thinking about when I was reading you said that kind of stuff as well is like, do shortcuts end up getting more powerful on the Mac and then dragging iOS along or is it going to feel different?

00:56:39   I don't know.

00:56:41   I mean, in the short run, shortcuts is more powerful on the Mac and iOS isn't changing, right?

00:56:46   Because the stuff that they're adding on the Mac, they are adding more powerful things on both, right?

00:56:50   There are a bunch of automator actions that will be on both that will allow you to do things on iOS that you cannot do before.

00:56:57   But there are also the things that they're not bringing over and what they're not bringing over is run a shell script, run an AppleScript.

00:57:04   That kind of stuff is not there.

00:57:06   And will Apple ever allow you to run something like that?

00:57:11   Probably not.

00:57:12   On iPad, probably not.

00:57:14   But I do think there's another level.

00:57:16   I wrote about this on Macworld last week.

00:57:19   There's what happens next, right?

00:57:21   Because remember Apple said this is a multi-year process.

00:57:24   Well, one of the reasons it's a multi-year process is that automator isn't automation on the Mac.

00:57:28   It's a tool for automation on the Mac.

00:57:31   So making automator go away and be replaced with shortcuts, okay, that's great.

00:57:35   That's step one.

00:57:36   What's the rest of the process?

00:57:38   Mac OS has this whole existing infrastructure where inter-application communication is handled by Apple events.

00:57:44   And then you've got the scripting architecture, which is AppleScript or JavaScript for applications.

00:57:49   You can actually use either one.

00:57:52   So what's the future of that?

00:57:56   My guess is that Apple events is going to get deprecated, that it'll still be there for a few years,

00:58:03   but that Apple will introduce another kind of like this is the right way for apps to communicate with each other at a very basic level that allows you to do.

00:58:12   I'd say the way I'm trying to explain it is most automation through shortcut actions is fairly straightforward.

00:58:20   A lot of it is like here is a thing that my app can do.

00:58:23   And if you want to write a script that uses that thing, great.

00:58:27   What shortcuts doesn't do a lot of is remote control of apps where you say, hey, open this, you know, find this thing, then open this window, then get the text out of that window.

00:58:38   Now move to the next one and open this window and get the text.

00:58:40   That's what AppleScript is really good at is like deep down into controlling an app.

00:58:46   And then you write a script that controls multiple apps and they talk together and they do stuff.

00:58:50   And like that's where a lot of the magic happens on the Mac.

00:58:53   So what's the future of that on the Mac and what of that might be the future on iOS too?

00:59:01   That's where I think that the Mac bringing the Mac into this is going to benefit iOS in the future is that I can't imagine that if Apple says,

00:59:08   okay, Apple events is going to go away, but what we're going to do is this is going to be the defined way that apps communicate with one another and offer themselves up to be controlled.

00:59:18   Use this method, whatever it is, and maybe it's based on something on iOS and maybe it's not, but like this is what we're going to do.

00:59:26   I have a hard time imagining that they'd say that and they wouldn't make that available on iOS too, right?

00:59:31   Well, I think, you know, to your point about like can, could it end up making iOS shortcuts more powerful?

00:59:38   Like just the mere inclusion of shortcuts on the Mac has made iOS shortcuts more powerful.

00:59:44   There are now iPadOS windowing and multitasking shortcuts that just didn't exist before, but now kind of have to.

00:59:52   You can use a shortcut to generate text to speech and save it as a file.

00:59:57   You could not do that before and now you can because they brought over those automator actions.

01:00:01   It is possible, I think, and quite feasible to believe that as they continue to add to shortcuts on the Mac, we won't get everything on the iOS version, but it will continue to accelerate what that version can do, I think faster than if it was just on its own.

01:00:22   So, so this is, yeah, and that's basically what I'm saying is this transition on the Mac is going to force Apple to make some decisions about what it wants the future of these other automation technologies to be on Mac OS.

01:00:34   And I have a hard time believing that they wouldn't make those decisions with iOS in mind.

01:00:40   So if they're going to replace Apple events eventually with something, what is the official way you do that? All apps are going to follow it. Hard to believe that that wouldn't be the case on both platforms.

01:00:53   Likewise, scripting. So AppleScript and JavaScript are there now.

01:00:58   I think that in the long run, you, I can't see AppleScript surviving.

01:01:02   It'll be deprecated and hang around for a while, but I like it.

01:01:05   It is, it is very old technology.

01:01:08   I don't think Apple wants to keep it alive.

01:01:11   I think that it's far more likely that what Apple is going to do is bless a new scripting language or languages and say, these are the ones that you use to write the scripts that use the new inter-application communication method.

01:01:25   I think that there's always going to be a hunger for like writing scripts that are much more sophisticated than building little blocks and shortcuts as great as that is. You even see this now, this impulse is happening now. There's an app called Jelly Cuts.

01:01:38   jellycuts.com that literally you write scripts in a language that this developer invented and they turn into shortcuts.

01:01:49   So you write your shortcuts in code and then they are turned into shortcuts.

01:01:54   Right. And like that's wild, but like that's the impulse, which is there is a level above building shortcuts out of the little building blocks where you want to do something more sophisticated.

01:02:04   So what's the future of that? AppleScript was that. And then they added the JavaScript for application JXA kind of layer.

01:02:12   So my guess is, although I think it's possible that they will say JavaScript and there's a lot of good work being done out there with JavaScript, Sal, who y'all know, Sal Segoian, who used to be at Apple and was the AppleScript guy.

01:02:28   He has spent the last few years building this amazing automation technology in Omni group apps that's all based on JavaScript and it's cross platform so you can completely remote control Omni's apps on the iPad and on the Mac using JavaScript.

01:02:46   Right. But they've had to build that themselves. And that's the problem is all these apps have their own JavaScript engine or their own Python engine or whatever, and they're all different.

01:02:54   So the scripts aren't interoperable and they can't talk to, you know, you can't move a script from one text editor to another, even if they're both using JavaScript.

01:03:01   I tried that. It's like, nope, they're different JavaScripts. They don't work the same and they don't talk to each other except through URLs or shortcuts or whatever.

01:03:10   Right. This whole part of it is just missing. My gut feeling is what Apple is going to do is say, hey, you know what would be good for this is Swift.

01:03:18   And introduce a sort of Swift playgrounds kind of level version of Swift that people can use to script applications at a high level.

01:03:30   And that would, again, probably be on the Mac and on iPhone and iPad, which would be funny, but it makes sense if you think about it, like Apple doesn't necessarily want to put Perl or Python or anything like that on iOS,

01:03:49   but application control through Apple's approved channels via Apple's approved scripting language, which has very specific limitations, I could see them doing that in a heartbeat.

01:04:02   So if I had to make a guess, that would be my guess. And I think this is when they say multi-year, this is what they're talking about.

01:04:08   This is going to take three or four years for them to really get a handle of.

01:04:12   But I do think that I have a hard time imagining Apple building all of those things on the Mac and then not putting them on the iPad.

01:04:20   Like the whole point of building them anew on the Mac has got to be that they're going to be the future of this toolset.

01:04:28   And it's going to run on all of apps, all of Apple's app platforms that are appropriate for this kind of thing, which at this point I think is really the iPad and the Mac.

01:04:40   Other than shortcuts, let's look at some of the other things. FaceTime, we did a FaceTime call.

01:04:45   Yeah, we did. Screenshots in my story. It's you, me, Dan, and Steven.

01:04:52   Yeah, and we used the web version. I used the web version of FaceTime on my iPad, which was really confusing to me.

01:05:01   Like I clicked the link and I don't know why. So when I clicked the link that you sent, it opened in Safari, which I wasn't expecting.

01:05:12   I don't know if this is going to be the intended behavior, but I figured it would open in the FaceTime app.

01:05:20   But it didn't do that, which was weird.

01:05:24   Yeah, I mean, it's a beta. It also was really unreliable and weird.

01:05:28   It was super janky.

01:05:29   My story basically says, "Hey, FaceTime and SharePlay are interesting." And I have some questions about their long-term viability.

01:05:34   I think that it's better and I think that it's worth the try and I think Apple needs to do it. It's almost table stakes.

01:05:39   But at the same time, I kind of can't judge it yet because it doesn't really work quite right.

01:05:44   And I want to give them the benefit of the doubt at least. I do have some skepticism.

01:05:49   I think what my caption for that screenshot of our FaceTime chat was is like, "It still looks weird."

01:05:54   They're like, "Grid view." So we're kind of like Zoom and it's like, "Yeah, but you're not."

01:05:59   It's still weird. It's still, I don't know. There's something about FaceTime group conversations that's still strange, but it's early.

01:06:05   They're going to make changes. Hopefully it'll become more stable.

01:06:09   I will put it out there that this is unstable enough that it makes me think this could be one of those, maybe not the first release.

01:06:18   We'll see how it goes this summer.

01:06:20   But some of these features, it wouldn't shock me if some of these features are not quite there.

01:06:24   FaceTime stuff has always been delayed.

01:06:27   Every time that it's like files and FaceTime, anything they add to those two applications, they never come out in September.

01:06:35   It always comes out later.

01:06:37   In using Monterey, were there any like little details outside of the standard big tent pole things that stuck out to you

01:06:48   as nice changes to the operating system?

01:06:52   I mean, there's lots of fun little things.

01:06:54   I mean, the password manager is amazing and it's kind of like a full-on password manager, including one-time codes.

01:07:02   It's hidden away in the Preferences app, but it is very powerful.

01:07:08   Finder has some new things in it. The go-to folder command, I got way too excited about this.

01:07:15   Basically, the go-to folder command is fast now.

01:07:18   If you type a path that you want to jump to, it feels so fast at auto-expanding it and stuff.

01:07:26   Isn't it great? Well, you say that, but Apple hides the library folder now.

01:07:30   So if you want to go inside the library folder, you actually have to use go to and then type in the library folder.

01:07:35   Then I type app and I want it to expand application support and it doesn't always do it.

01:07:40   You have to hit tab and that all happens a lot faster now.

01:07:43   It's very responsive. But how about this one?

01:07:45   If a file copy breaks because your network goes down, when your network comes back, it picks up where it left off.

01:07:52   I do think that's super cool.

01:07:54   You can resume copies, copies that don't go well.

01:07:57   They sort of show up. It's almost like a download, except it's just in the Finder showing the progress bar.

01:08:04   It will resume. So I did this. I disconnected my computer from the network and it broke.

01:08:12   And then I reconnected it and I was going to see what the interface was to resume the transfer.

01:08:18   And there was none. It just resumed the transfer and got the file.

01:08:24   So that's pretty good. And there's more feedback in Finder windows about files that are being copied.

01:08:31   It does the little circle with a little piece of pie kind of fill-in thing where when you're in a file transfer,

01:08:38   it's still got the little file transfer window that's visible, but you can actually see each individual file,

01:08:44   like its progress in the Finder as it's being copied.

01:08:47   So there's little some little details like that.

01:08:50   And low power mode where they're downclocking the processor and lowering the brightness in order to eke out more battery life.

01:08:59   I don't know the details of exactly how that's working.

01:09:02   And I imagine it's different for every processor, but they are making an attempt to let Mac batteries last longer.

01:09:09   If you are willing for your Mac to be a little bit slower.

01:09:12   Do you think that this is worth installing right now? Like enthusiasts listening to the show.

01:09:20   Is there much of a reason to install Monterey right now?

01:09:25   I'd say unless you are a really enthusiastic shortcuts user.

01:09:31   Right. That could be it.

01:09:33   Or user automation person on the Mac and you want to start diving into that.

01:09:38   But I'll warn you, it's one of the most unstable parts because the app is brand new and they're fixing lots of bugs there.

01:09:44   So like that that app just quits you like you're suddenly like, oh, it's gone or you drag something and it and it doesn't drag right.

01:09:52   And you can't see anything and you have to quit it.

01:09:54   Like it's just a mess right now. But it's a it's a one point.

01:09:57   Oh, I'm pretty sure that'll be ready by the time they ship. It works.

01:10:01   It just the interface is kind of a mess at the moment.

01:10:05   But I you know, I don't know. I mean, Safari is bad and shortcuts is still a work in progress.

01:10:11   And I think you could probably wait. Like, I don't think and the face time stuff is still a little unstable.

01:10:17   So, you know, I don't think there's anything here. I think this is going to be one of those releases that has a bunch of little improvements.

01:10:24   I think this is going to be much less of a trial for people to upgrade than the last two versions of Mac OS have been.

01:10:32   That all said, I think also it doesn't have something so compelling that you need to do it over the summer.

01:10:37   Yeah, I'll say like it's going to be a day one upgrade for me when it's out because of all of the things that become compatible with iOS and iPad OS.

01:10:46   So things like tab groups, focus modes, all that kind of stuff that's like unusual for the Mac to be so day one with features.

01:10:58   I would say if you love tabs, tab groups could be a thing that you update to see.

01:11:02   But the problem is then you have to take the bad Safari tabs, which are not they're bad.

01:11:06   Yeah, I'd wait. I'd wait to see if Apple makes some changes to make that more palatable.

01:11:09   Otherwise, you're you know, I'm I am a tab user who's interested in tab groups.

01:11:14   It's like yes, but also have you seen the tabs like that's a tough one.

01:11:19   That's a tough one. It's a good bad for tab enthusiasts.

01:11:22   I never install Mac betas. I always install iOS and iPad OS betas.

01:11:27   I always feel like for me, the amount of destruction that could occur if something goes wrong with my Mac is far greater.

01:11:36   Like it's both more powerful and therefore feels more fragile to me that if I mess stuff up with my Mac or things aren't going to work right on my Mac.

01:11:45   That's going to be vastly more disruptive to me than if things go wrong on my iPhone on my iPad for a while.

01:11:52   It actually is the case that I think we use our Macs as our kind of refuge.

01:11:58   They are a stable place.

01:12:00   They are the place where we get some of our most crucial work done.

01:12:06   Whereas I get I do work on my iPad all the time, but like and I need it to be stable, but I needed to what I ask of it is like, please allow me to write articles in the text editor.

01:12:20   Right. That's what I need out of my iPad.

01:12:23   Please let me check my email, you know, like but on my Mac, it's like I need audio hijack to work.

01:12:29   And zoom to work and video streaming software to work and loop back to work.

01:12:34   I need all of this stuff to work and you know, rogue Amoeba makes a bunch of that and I love that software.

01:12:39   But rogue Amoeba is working down at very low level system stuff that is often completely changed across versions and they have to spend all summer working to qualify that stuff and get it to function properly.

01:12:55   And I don't know how bad that's going to be.

01:12:57   My guess is that it's a lot easier for them this summer than it has been in the past and this stuff will be able to be made more compatible quickly.

01:13:05   But like I can't take my Mac onto the betas if all the tools that I use to do podcasts break right like then where do I do my podcast?

01:13:17   So I'd really rather not.

01:13:18   I would also just like to say for the record, and maybe people are just going to get mad at me for saying this.

01:13:24   If you want to install the betas on your devices, just go for it.

01:13:29   Enjoy it. Live your life.

01:13:31   You know, I know everyone says all the time, nobody should install the betas.

01:13:34   But if you want to do it, go for it.

01:13:37   That's why they have the public beta.

01:13:38   Go for it. Go wild.

01:13:40   You love this technology.

01:13:41   Have fun.

01:13:42   The iPad and the iPhone are actually pretty stable at this point.

01:13:44   So I think they're okay.

01:13:45   On the Mac, what I would say is if you can do it on a separate partition or an external drive because you can't do that on the iPad and the iPhone.

01:13:52   But you can do that on the Mac.

01:13:54   Because you can, right?

01:13:55   So you might as well take that extra step.

01:13:57   But if you want to put iPadOS 15 on your iPad, Myke's saying it's okay for you to do it.

01:14:03   Myke says it's okay.

01:14:04   Go wild.

01:14:05   Myke says it's okay and Apple says it's okay.

01:14:08   Apple says it's okay is why the public beta exists.

01:14:10   Public beta, they have the developer betas where it's like, "Do not install this unless you are a developer developing software."

01:14:16   The public beta is like, "Yeah, you want to install it? Go for it."

01:14:20   Go for it. Go wild.

01:14:21   Have fun.

01:14:23   Like, you know, just have fun. Enjoy yourself.

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01:16:56   Let's finish up today with some #AskUpgrade questions.

01:17:00   First one comes in from Andrew. Andrew says, "I have just bought a 4th Gen iPad since it has a USB-C connector."

01:17:09   I think that's an iPad Air, right? The 4th Gen iPad Air. "Since it has a USB-C connector, can I use non-Apple dongles for HDMI or SD card readers?"

01:17:19   Or do I have to use stuff that Apple has made?

01:17:22   I think you can. I'm not 100% on that.

01:17:26   I've used all kinds of dongles with my iPad Pro, so I don't see any reason why not.

01:17:31   If it's a USB device type that the OS supports, it should work, right? Like, if it can support an HDMI out, which it can, it should just work fine.

01:17:45   If it supports SD card readers, which it does, it should just work.

01:17:49   Yeah, it has to be the type of thing, as you say, that the iPad OS can handle, which for HDMI output, no problem. SD card readers, no problem. Flash storage stuff, keyboards, mice, dongles, and all that kind. It works fine.

01:18:07   And I've used stuff from HyperDrive, OWC, 12 South, I've used all kinds of little USB hubs and stuff like that, and they all work. So, yes.

01:18:20   Stuff does work, but as I say, it has to be stuff that is approved by, or available to the system.

01:18:27   Right.

01:18:28   Ryan asks, "If Safari kept the redesign as a developer beta 2, would you change your primary browser?"

01:18:36   I don't know. Only because I do really like Safari, and I use it across all my devices.

01:18:43   And I don't want to get in a situation where I'm not using the same browser across all the platforms because then I lose.

01:18:49   Well, you can now, though, right? You can change your default browser on iOS and iPad OS.

01:18:55   I know, but then I have to use, so if I want to keep all my history and bookmarks and tabs and stuff in sync, it means I have to run Chrome on my Mac.

01:19:06   I don't really want to do that, but we'll see. I don't want to be that person who says, "If Safari changes, I'm leaving," because that's not necessarily true, but it would be painful.

01:19:23   I would have to think about it, I guess is what I would say. I'd have to weigh the consequences and try it out and see if there was a better experience to be had in another browser.

01:19:33   Maybe I didn't make this clear. I definitely can live with Safari as it is.

01:19:38   I would prefer refinements to the design, but Myke Hurley personally, I can live with it. I'm fine with it.

01:19:47   Now, asterisk, I've not used the iPhone version, and it does seem like the iPhone version of Safari is actually the most egregious.

01:19:56   From the people that I've heard that have used them all or the people that have used some and complaining, the complaints coming from how it is on the iPhone seems much worse.

01:20:06   My main use has been on the iPad, but with the iPad, because that will transfer up to the Mac version, I can live with that. I don't think I would switch because of it, but I would like to see them, like everybody else, make some refinements.

01:20:23   And in the chat room, they're saying, "Oh, there's more options than just Chrome, Jason." And the answer is if I had to choose to use Brave or Firefox or something, I would just stay with Safari. I think Chrome is the only one I would even consider using.

01:20:37   I think I would agree with you. Sorry, everyone. I'm sure we're going to hear from--

01:20:44   And we know Upper exists, okay? Because again, what you're committing to is using it on all platforms. And I've used some of those browsers, and I don't like Chrome especially, but I'm not using Firefox ever again. Sorry, Firefox fans. Nope, not going to happen.

01:21:03   Tim asks, "Do you think Apple would ever make a waterproof iPad so I can live out my dream of using an already waterproofed smart key while floating on the pool without the worry of my iPad getting destroyed?"

01:21:16   I would love this. I don't know if they would do it, but why not do it though, you know?

01:21:24   It feels like it's not a priority, but I'll tell you that there was definitely that moment where all of the Kindles got waterproofed, right? Like all the e-readers were suddenly like, "Oh, yeah, Jeff Bezos is reading his Kindle in a Ziploc bag."

01:21:41   It's like, "No, no, no. Let's waterproof this thing." The question is, like, okay, what is going to motivate Apple to waterproof an iPad? Let's also keep in mind that Apple doesn't really waterproof its devices, right? It water-resistance their devices, but if they get water-ingress, it isn't covered, and it's your fault.

01:22:03   They're just trying to reduce the number of repairs.

01:22:05   But I want at least what I have on my iPhone, you know, even though it's not full. I want the level of protection I have for more on my iPhone on my iPad.

01:22:14   It's more work that they have to put in to do that over a larger area.

01:22:19   I know, but I still want it.

01:22:23   Well, this is, would they? It's like on an infinite timescale, maybe, but I don't think it's a priority.

01:22:28   No, I don't either.

01:22:29   And so I think it's less likely, although I could see somebody arguing that, like, the iPad mini should be waterproof or something like that, right?

01:22:37   Yeah, start there. I can get on board with that.

01:22:40   I can get on board with that.

01:22:42   Ryan asks, I think this is the same Ryan from before, multiple Ryan questions today.

01:22:47   Oh, boy.

01:22:48   Do you prefer to hide clothes or minimize your windows on the Mac and why?

01:22:53   I was going to say, I was going to reject this question and say none of the above, but then I realized if that was true, I would have an infinite number of windows.

01:23:01   Yeah, they would never close. So I think me and you might be quite similar here, actually.

01:23:05   The answer is close. I will occasionally hide an app, Command-H, old school, where just all the app windows disappear.

01:23:12   They're not living in the dock. They're just gone until I bring the app back. I will do that occasionally.

01:23:19   But I very, very, very rarely minimize to the dock. So I'd say close a strong number one with hide a very distant number two and then minimize a even more distant number three.

01:23:33   Of me, it's like-

01:23:34   Why? I don't know. I mean, for the most part, first off, I hate minimizing things in the dock because then you click and they fly out of the dock and it's like, no, I don't, like that behavior drives me crazy.

01:23:45   Like I really want to occasionally I'll do a video and picture and picture on the Mac and then I'll hide the browser window that it's in in the dock.

01:23:52   I'll minimize it because I want it to go away because I don't need the browser window. I just need the video and the video is playing picture in picture.

01:23:58   It's great. But then I want to open a new browser window and I click on Safari and it rather than opening a new window, it just brings that one out of the dock or I click on a link somewhere else.

01:24:10   And rather than opening a new window, it brings it out of the dock and it's like, I don't want it out of the dock. I put it in the dock. I want to stay in the dock and it won't do it.

01:24:18   So I get very frustrated by windows I put in the dock come out of the dock when I haven't given them permission. Right? It's like, no, stay there. Bad dog. Bad window. Stay in the dock.

01:24:30   So, uh, that's frustrating. So, and then hide. I do hide when there's too much going on. I will, I will hide, but most of the time I'm either using it or I'm not. And it's, that means it's open or it's closed and that's it.

01:24:42   I think we're pretty similar for me. It's the app is either open or it's closed. Very rarely hidden. Never minimize. I don't understand minimizing.

01:24:55   Yeah. It's just, I guess people there, I guess there must be minimizers out there. Right? Yeah. Love it. They're the, they're minimizers, big minimizers, but not, um, not me.

01:25:07   Maximal minimizers. Right. That's sure. Yep. Minimizing ends. Sure. No, they're just big minimizers.

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01:26:24   Uh, I would also like to thank one blocker member for and smile for their support of this episode. I'd like to thank you for listening.

01:26:31   If you want to find Jason online, go to six colors.com and he is at J snell J S N E double L on Twitter. And I am at I Myke I M Y K E.

01:26:41   Until next time. Say goodbye. Just now. Goodbye, Myke. Early.

01:26:45   Okay.