197: Retire Hate for Negative Love


00:00:00   (upbeat music)

00:00:02   - Hello and welcome to Connected, episode 197.

00:00:11   It's brought to you this week by Squarespace,

00:00:14   Pingdom, and Casper.

00:00:15   I'm your host, Stephen Hackett,

00:00:16   and I am not on stage this week with my co-host.

00:00:19   We are all back in our homes, recording alone,

00:00:22   staring into the soulless eyes of our computers.

00:00:26   I'm joined, of course, by Federico Vittucci.

00:00:28   - What do you mean?

00:00:28   in front of my neighbors I have an audience everybody's looking at me the

00:00:32   whole the whole building I was like I cannot do shows by myself anymore so you

00:00:37   guys should come and watch it's kind of creepy but it gets it done and Myke

00:00:44   Hurley how are you I don't like this introduction I like it when the

00:00:48   introduction is so loud that you have to bring the volume down in the I actually

00:00:55   Wait, this is something we spoke about. So the cheers, which were incredible. I definitely

00:00:59   got the energy on our live episode last week. They were so loud when me and Federico came

00:01:04   on that Steven had to duck the audio. I still want the raw audio. Like I wasn't joking.

00:01:09   I want to hear how loud it was again and again and again. So it was great. There are very

00:01:15   few things in my professional career that when I'm finished with them, I feel like,

00:01:19   oh, that was perfect. Last week's show was perfect. So thank you to everyone who came

00:01:22   out. Thank you to everyone who's listened to it. It was an incredible episode. I loved

00:01:26   it so much.

00:01:27   It was a lot of fun. And if you haven't listened, you totally should. But at the end of the

00:01:33   show, we announced a couple of things. We are going to be taking the show on the road

00:01:37   this fall. We'll be in Chicago with Upgrade on Monday, October 22nd. That has sold out,

00:01:45   but there's a waitlist, so you could hop on the waitlist and see how that goes. And then

00:01:49   And we'll be doing Connected in New York on Thursday, October 25th.

00:01:55   And as my speaking this word out loud right now into my microphone, there are a few tickets

00:02:01   left.

00:02:02   And so if you're interested in coming to see us in New York, I would definitely click on

00:02:05   that link.

00:02:06   Those links will be in the show notes this week for your clicking pleasure.

00:02:11   The Relay Road Trip is what Jeremy's calling it in the chat room.

00:02:13   I like that.

00:02:14   That is nice, actually.

00:02:15   Relay Road Trip.

00:02:16   - Really very true.

00:02:17   - We should have come up with that name, to be honest.

00:02:19   - That's really pretty good, yeah.

00:02:21   - Yep, gosh darn it.

00:02:23   - So we have a little follow up.

00:02:30   I wanted to point people to an interview I did

00:02:32   with Greg from Smile.

00:02:35   Smile, of course, everyone knows from Tech Expander

00:02:37   and PDF Pen, they sponsored a bunch of shows

00:02:39   here on the network, but I was able to sit down with Greg

00:02:43   and do an interview because their company

00:02:45   is turned 15 years old this week.

00:02:49   And I think that's a heck of an achievement.

00:02:52   We're talking about some of their early software.

00:02:54   Guys, they had software for like,

00:02:56   making labels for like, DVDs and for faxing,

00:03:01   like all sorts of crazy stuff.

00:03:03   - You're the only customer left, right?

00:03:05   (laughing)

00:03:07   - Of the disc making software?

00:03:09   - Yeah, and the labels and the printing and all that.

00:03:12   - Yeah, they took it off for sale and said,

00:03:13   "Hey man, you gotta get me a copy."

00:03:15   I need to archive that. I was thinking about this because I read this interview and one,

00:03:22   I love Smile. Smile have been a supporter of relay FM since the very beginning of it.

00:03:26   They took a chance on us before we were even a thing. The other is, I really like the idea

00:03:32   of a company turning 15 years old. It just makes me feel better about my own company,

00:03:36   right? Like, "Oh, okay, we're about to turn four. Maybe we can make it to 15."

00:03:42   That feels like a good thing, so I appreciate knowing this information.

00:03:45   Yeah, I can relate to that, especially because my source is going to be 10 next year.

00:03:50   That's not possible.

00:03:51   Yes, it is possible.

00:03:52   No, it's not possible. How did you do that?

00:03:55   Well, you know, the time goes on.

00:03:57   Are you old like Steven?

00:03:58   No, I started...

00:04:01   I was going to say, our websites differ in age only by a year.

00:04:04   Yeah, but the...

00:04:05   512 will be 10 this year.

00:04:06   The difference is in spirit, Steven. We've talked about this before.

00:04:09   four. So yeah, I started when I was, you know, when I was 12 basically and now I'm 22. So,

00:04:21   you know, everybody knows. Everybody knows that.

00:04:23   I was 67, you know, this is retirement age blogger.

00:04:26   I love that you're just leaning into it at this point.

00:04:29   It was Steven's retirement idea. It's like, oh, I got all this stuff.

00:04:32   I should be a blogger now.

00:04:34   What else am I going to do?

00:04:36   And all these labels that I've been printing.

00:04:38   May as well just do something with all these Macs I've been accumulating over the last

00:04:42   30 years.

00:04:43   Oh boy.

00:04:45   Man.

00:04:46   So you were saying, smile, the interview.

00:04:50   Yeah, so I was happy how it turned out.

00:04:53   I think it was really interesting to talk to them about the evolution of, if you think

00:04:58   about it, really everything, right?

00:05:00   They started when it was just the Mac, OS X was very new, and they sort of took a chance

00:05:05   on OS X and it paid off, but now they're of course on iOS and like we talked about them buying text

00:05:14   expander that's something that was a an acquisition for them and the transformation of that into a

00:05:20   cloud sort of like 21st century service. It was really interesting and I enjoyed being able to do

00:05:25   it so I owe a big thanks to Smile for letting me talk to them and being I think if you read through

00:05:32   the questions like they're they're just kind of laid all out there we talked

00:05:35   about they tried for while putting some of their software in like retail stores

00:05:39   like Apple retail stores and like they had like boxes designed and printed and

00:05:43   like that didn't do very well we kind of talked about that so it was fun to kind

00:05:47   of get the story from a couple different sides anytime you can get some history

00:05:52   you'll take it that's right it's true so speaking of history hold on a second

00:05:58   before you move on, there was a thing in my notes which relates to you. I was advised

00:06:06   by Michael last week to thank listener Austin who came to the live show at WWDC and can

00:06:14   you tell Myke the story of what happened with Austin and the live show?

00:06:21   So we bumped into Austin first at ATP and Austin had a gift for us but we would not

00:06:27   accept the gift until Steven was there. Austin brought with him the Logitech mouse manual

00:06:35   that we spoke about many weeks ago when we were talking about the Logitech Crayon and

00:06:41   Steven got very excited about this really old mouse manual that he found on eBay. And

00:06:47   Austin bought that and brought it with us and now Steven has the manual and me and Federico

00:06:54   each have a floppy disk. So yeah, listener Austin, thank you for doing that and especially

00:07:06   for the floppy disk. I know that Steven was really happy, I have a bunch of photos of

00:07:10   Steven being really excited to put his hands on the really old book. I can do him better.

00:07:18   gave it to me you guys want to hear it yeah please that's what if you read it

00:07:25   yeah even even even the pages sound old so yeah thank you Austin and I'm really

00:07:33   happy that you're happy Steven yeah I'm up to the chapter the point and click

00:07:37   trademark shell for Lotus one two three trademark so awesome coming right along

00:07:43   Sounds great.

00:07:44   Really, really hot stuff.

00:07:47   You can move on.

00:07:49   Yes, so speaking of history, let's

00:07:51   talk about the workflow app.

00:07:53   We have what may be the best use of workflow yet.

00:07:56   And it has put together really the art of emoji

00:08:02   and the science of the teachy scale

00:08:05   into something that, quite honestly, I

00:08:08   think it could change my entire outlook about the iPad.

00:08:11   I think I could work on iOS now because of this workflow.

00:08:13   So when do you guys want to walk us

00:08:15   through what this workflow does?

00:08:17   So this was created by Rosemary Orchard and Matt Casanelli.

00:08:23   If you install this workflow upon your device,

00:08:26   at any point you will be able to invoke the tch scale.

00:08:29   So you will be able to tweet with how you feel something

00:08:33   ranks upon the tch scale.

00:08:36   It gives you the option to choose which of the areas

00:08:40   you want to be pointing towards, so maybe you think something's nightmare or good plus,

00:08:45   and then it will spit out an emojified version of the tiki scale for you so you can rank

00:08:50   things whenever you please. It is stupendous.

00:08:53   Yeah, and it's a really great way to have instant access to one of the greatest types

00:09:02   of measurements.

00:09:03   Of our time.

00:09:04   I mean, one day we will look back, you know, names such as Copernicus or Galileo Galilei,

00:09:12   and then we're also going to... the tiki scale up there.

00:09:15   The tiki scale system, one of the greatest revolutions of our time.

00:09:21   Is the only true way to understand how much you love something or feel about something.

00:09:27   a scientific way to grade your love or hate for something. Yeah, well, you know, if you

00:09:35   think about it, it's all love, really, you know, if you think about it, just something

00:09:40   like you have to have negative love and positive... Exactly, yes. Let's retire the word "hate"

00:09:47   and use "negative love" instead. Oh boy. So now there's a workflow for that. Or a shortcut.

00:09:57   doing enough.

00:09:58   Yeah, oh man, can you imagine that you'd be able to just activate this thing by voice?

00:10:03   I don't know how that would work, but maybe we'll find out later on in the show.

00:10:08   I have one last piece of follow up that I wanted to mention before we move on today.

00:10:13   Apple has clarified emoji use in app review guidelines, so they've updated the app review

00:10:17   guidelines. Remember we were talking about this a bunch, we had Jeremy Burge on the show

00:10:22   to talk about when apps were getting rejected for using emoji? Well, Apple has clarified

00:10:26   it to say, "Apps may use Unicode characters that render as Apple emojis in their app and

00:10:34   app metadata. Apple emojis may not be used on other platforms or embedded directly in

00:10:40   your app binary."

00:10:41   So basically, you can use emoji if it's in Unicode text form only. You cannot use any

00:10:49   images of them, which is by and large what we had expected, but this clarifies it. You

00:10:57   can use emoji if you're rendering them as text, you cannot use Apple's emoji as images.

00:11:03   So it is done now, everybody knows.

00:11:06   That makes sense. I mean, it seems fair, right? I don't think this is something to be upset

00:11:12   about.

00:11:13   No, it's not, but I think that there was... it was getting confusing for a while because

00:11:19   there were a bunch of things that seemed to be being removed from the store that didn't

00:11:25   need to be, and maybe Apple internally needed to actually clarify it for themselves as well,

00:11:31   and now that's been done, so people know how they can move on, which I think is great.

00:11:36   So should we take our first break? And then it's time to talk about all of my plans for

00:11:40   reviewing watchOS over the summer.

00:11:44   Perfect. I thought you were doing TV-OS.

00:11:46   Well, both actually.

00:11:47   I'm going to stretch myself out and do both of them because someone's

00:11:51   going to pick up the slack.

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00:13:33   So before we get to my review plans for all of the stuff that I'm going to be working

00:13:38   on over the summer, what if we just, I don't know, just quickly breeze through Federico

00:13:44   and Steven's plans and then we can get to the real meat of the conversation?

00:13:47   Sounds good, yeah, let's do it.

00:13:50   So what are you thinking of doing? Are you going to, Federico, are you going to get in

00:13:57   depth again about all of the different NS activities and stuff like that for your IRS

00:14:02   review? Are you going to dig right into the code base?

00:14:06   No. So we, I think we touched upon this briefly a few weeks ago maybe, and then we've been

00:14:15   talking about this in person last week. I've been planning to change my approach to writing

00:14:24   in iOS reviews, because I feel like for the past couple of years I've gone too far on

00:14:30   the technical side, and I want to bring my review style back to a more balanced approach

00:14:39   of explaining the technical things for sure, but also trying to focus more on the experience

00:14:48   of using a new OS, of what the features mean, not just what the features are made of, if

00:14:56   that makes sense. And I feel like I've tried both approaches over the years. I used to

00:15:03   do just personal opinion and experience type reviews years ago. Then for the past couple

00:15:10   of years I've tried to give more importance to the technical side, and I feel like I've

00:15:17   learned a lot of lessons and I feel like iOS 12 is the perfect moment to try

00:15:25   something that is in the middle of both camps. 12 is really the best time to try

00:15:33   something that is shorter. So for the past couple of years I've published

00:15:37   reviews that were I think iOS 10 50,000 words and iOS 11 was 55,000.

00:15:47   That is way too much and it didn't make me feel...

00:15:52   I felt good about the work because it was a, you know, it was a

00:15:56   it was a reference

00:15:59   material for so many people, but it didn't make me feel good doing the work. It was exhausting. It was way too much and

00:16:07   it also made the review not easily accessible for tons of people who don't care about the

00:16:15   finest details about the API and the SDK.

00:16:17   And I've been thinking a lot about this of

00:16:21   what is it that I enjoy about doing these reviews? And I enjoy discovering all these little things. I enjoy

00:16:27   understanding what's going on behind the scenes, but the fact that I

00:16:32   the fact that I enjoy

00:16:35   learning that information doesn't mean that it necessarily makes for a good review.

00:16:40   Well, it was good for what it made. So like, you know, I think last year or the year before,

00:16:49   they were good things. You had a good reference and a good review, but I guess the decision

00:16:56   is do you need to make the reference part?

00:16:59   What I'm trying to say is that I felt in some chapters of the review that I was doing those

00:17:07   primarily for me and not for the readers, in the sense that I was doing them because

00:17:13   I wanted to have that reference material.

00:17:17   Which is a noble approach in a way, but also my readers are my priority, not the things

00:17:25   that I want.

00:17:26   Because personally, I can just keep some notes.

00:17:30   And so I've been thinking a lot about this of, how can I make the review more accessible,

00:17:34   How can I balance the technical side and the personal experience side, which is really

00:17:40   what I love writing about.

00:17:43   How does a feature or a new design or something that Apple is doing impact me on a daily basis?

00:17:48   What's the experience of using the OS?

00:17:50   And so I wanted to see what was going to happen in iOS 12.

00:17:54   And now that we have iOS 12, I think if you look at the features that Apple is putting

00:17:58   out there this year, it's the perfect time to do this kind of approach.

00:18:02   We have new notifications, do not disturb, screen time.

00:18:07   These are all features that are--

00:18:09   basically, developers have nothing to do with them.

00:18:13   There's no screen time API.

00:18:16   And the notification APIs are basically unchanged.

00:18:19   It's more on the user experience side, more on the here's what

00:18:23   it means to have these features.

00:18:25   And of course, yes, there is shortcuts,

00:18:27   which will be the technical part of the review.

00:18:29   I will talk about what shortcuts do behind the scenes,

00:18:32   But also, I think I'm uniquely positioned to talk about what

00:18:37   shortcuts actually does, what it means to put together

00:18:39   a workflow in or custom shortcut in the new app.

00:18:44   I don't see-- and this was also kind of talking to developers

00:18:48   last week.

00:18:48   This was also what developers had as an impression of WWDC.

00:18:54   There isn't that many technical changes besides shortcuts

00:18:59   to adopt this summer.

00:19:01   There's a few things.

00:19:02   There's shortcuts, there's the SiriKit media stuff,

00:19:06   but it's not a highly technical OS,

00:19:09   as iOS 11 might have been with all the iPad stuff

00:19:12   and the drag and drop and the multitasking.

00:19:14   So this is something that I've been thinking about

00:19:18   for the past year.

00:19:19   I want to make the review more accessible, be shorter,

00:19:24   try to be at least under 40,000.

00:19:28   But if I can do something in between 30 and 35,

00:19:31   I would be really happy with that.

00:19:34   And I want to find a better balance between describing

00:19:39   technical changes, of course, having an in-depth review,

00:19:46   having tons of screenshots and footnotes and all those details

00:19:49   that people love.

00:19:50   But also, I want to write more of my own thoughts,

00:19:53   of my own opinions of what it means to be using a new OS.

00:19:57   And so yeah, that's the basic goal

00:20:02   that I have in mind for this summer.

00:20:06   - Do you expect there to be sections

00:20:08   that you'll just straight up not do?

00:20:10   - Oh yeah, oh yeah, for sure.

00:20:13   One of my plans is to, for example,

00:20:17   stuff that I'm not really an expert about,

00:20:21   like Apple Books, I don't read books.

00:20:26   It's one of those things that you say,

00:20:28   "Man, I really should read more books than you'll ever do."

00:20:31   What I'm planning is we're going to have

00:20:35   on the website this summer, sometime in July or August,

00:20:39   a few deep dives into the new apps

00:20:43   and some features that I will not cover in my review

00:20:46   so that I will have a section of these apps in my review.

00:20:50   I will describe the basic idea of what's new

00:20:56   and the few thoughts that I have about them.

00:21:00   And then I'll just say, for a deep dive,

00:21:02   you can read this article from someone who knows more

00:21:04   about this stuff than me.

00:21:06   Just like I did with Swift Playgrounds three years ago.

00:21:10   It's not that I can learn Swift,

00:21:13   just to write about playgrounds in my review.

00:21:15   So Apple Books, I think is a great example.

00:21:17   I can talk about it for the limited use

00:21:20   that I have of the app, but then I will have someone else.

00:21:24   I've read about Apple Books more in depth.

00:21:27   I think that makes sense. I think this is probably good for your health.

00:21:31   Yes, from all types of health, to the physical health and mental health, I don't want to

00:21:36   go crazy again putting together this review. And ideally, I should be able to get it done

00:21:42   in the two weeks of writing that I usually set aside for myself in July. Another change,

00:21:51   I'm not watching any sessions right now,

00:21:55   which is unusual from, you know,

00:21:58   especially it's a big change for, from the past two years.

00:22:02   I used to come back from WWDC

00:22:04   and just download all the sessions and watch all of them.

00:22:07   But for the reasons that I mentioned before

00:22:10   of there aren't just that many technical changes in 12.

00:22:14   And also I want to use the OS for a month

00:22:20   before I start writing about it.

00:22:22   So what I'm doing is I'm just getting regular work done.

00:22:26   I have iOS 12 on my iPhone, on my iPad.

00:22:29   I'm not watching any sessions.

00:22:30   I'm just taking notes of things

00:22:31   that I notice in normal daily usage.

00:22:34   So I'm trying, you know, it's the same approach

00:22:37   that I used to have a few years ago.

00:22:38   And then I'm sure that I will read through

00:22:40   the documentation of, you know, the changes again,

00:22:42   such as shortcuts, which I've done this week.

00:22:45   So it's not like I will abandon

00:22:48   the technical stuff completely,

00:22:49   But I need to strike a better balance between these two sides of my reviews.

00:22:54   And like I said, I think 12 is the is a great opportunity to do so this this this year.

00:23:00   All right. I'm pleased because I think this is going to be

00:23:03   I think by and large better for everyone except the people that needed this

00:23:09   this reference guide.

00:23:10   But I think stuff like that can exist in other places.

00:23:13   You know, I think that whilst you did a great job,

00:23:17   it's not necessarily what you're best at.

00:23:19   I don't think people read your work for reference, but it's, you know,

00:23:24   but I guess a lot of people will use it for that if it exists.

00:23:27   But there are other places that can do that.

00:23:30   You know, I can think of somewhere like Oztechnica, right?

00:23:32   I would assume that's a kind of a thing that they do.

00:23:35   But also now, you know, you're saying about this now,

00:23:38   you're leaving the door open for other people, right?

00:23:40   Like that there is a there is a gap in the market

00:23:43   if that's what you want to be,

00:23:45   if that's the kind of thing you're interested in.

00:23:46   So but I'm pleased.

00:23:47   There's something, and if there's anything you want to write about at Mac Stories about

00:23:51   stuff that I will not cover, please get in touch. I would love to have you write about

00:23:55   stuff that I will not be taking care of. So, yes, I'm happy that you're pleased about my

00:24:02   decision. We've talked about this a lot last week in person, which was really good to hear

00:24:09   from someone else about the things I had in mind. I will, of course, be writing extensively

00:24:15   about shortcuts. I'm not sure yet. I think it will be part of the review. I've been considering

00:24:23   the idea of having a separate story because it's an app that you get from the App Store,

00:24:29   but I think overall it will make more sense for me to have it in the review itself.

00:24:34   So it'll probably be in there, but otherwise I will be sharing tons of shortcuts on Mac Stories,

00:24:41   Club Maxories, Unconnected, everywhere. I will be sharing shortcuts everywhere because

00:24:46   now Apple has made it official. So yeah, also I don't have a process yet for research and putting

00:24:55   together the review. It's something that will circle back here on connected in a few weeks.

00:25:00   Right now I'm just taking notes in notes. So not exciting at all. I still don't know if I'll be

00:25:06   using devon think or Ulysses or Jafs or I have no idea I'm just taking notes.

00:25:11   That is that whenever you decide that I want to know about that because it's always interesting

00:25:16   to talk about that. Steven are you preparing an army of haikus for your Mac OS Mojave?

00:25:25   Is it Mojave? I feel like every episode of every show I'm on I ask this question and

00:25:31   can never remember. Mojave. Mojave. What are you doing for Mojave? Are you actually going

00:25:37   to write a review this year? Because I know it's not always something that you do. You

00:25:40   sometimes write something small, you know, or whatever, if you decided what you want

00:25:45   to do. Yeah, I was actually looking through my Mac OS reviews folder and I've written

00:25:51   one, I wrote a line and one for a freelance thing, but since Mountain Lion, I've had one

00:25:57   on 512 except for Yosemite which we were having a baby and we had just started this company

00:26:05   and so I actually just wrote like a design review of the new user interface.

00:26:13   So if you take that one out of the mix I've got you know one two three five of them on

00:26:19   the site and they think the average is like 11,000 words.

00:26:22   It's a lot shorter than the opus

00:26:26   that Enrico's been publishing.

00:26:28   But yeah, I intend to do another one.

00:26:30   I think it'll be about that length.

00:26:32   I have a tendency to just focus on the consumer

00:26:36   like features side of it and only dip below the surface

00:26:41   when I feel like I need to.

00:26:43   So like my dark theme article,

00:26:44   which we're gonna talk about in a little while,

00:26:46   has some of that.

00:26:47   It was like this is how it's actually working.

00:26:49   This is what it's actually doing.

00:26:50   But I expect it to be online with my Sierra

00:26:53   or Hi Sierra review, walking through the features,

00:26:56   doing a mix of this is what the feature is,

00:27:00   this is what I think of it.

00:27:01   I kind of blend those things together

00:27:04   in the way that I write my reviews

00:27:05   with a bunch of screenshots and stuff.

00:27:07   So I expect to do it.

00:27:09   I'm running it on an external SSD on my MacBook Pro

00:27:13   and I've already spent some time in it.

00:27:15   I've watched a few sessions, mostly around dark mode.

00:27:19   There's actually not a lot of macOS sessions this year

00:27:21   at WWDC.

00:27:22   There's only a few others that don't pertain

00:27:25   directly to dark mode.

00:27:27   I think that speaks to sort of the quiet year

00:27:29   the Mac is having.

00:27:31   I think that will be obviously vastly different next year

00:27:34   when these iOS apps start coming to the Mac.

00:27:39   And that's really the section that I've been sort of

00:27:42   thinking about the most, about dealing with home news,

00:27:47   voice memos and stocks, these apps,

00:27:50   stocks, my stocks, that are built with these new tools

00:27:56   and like are very clearly, at least in the first beta,

00:28:01   sort of broken in places and like just weird in others.

00:28:04   And I'm trying to decide how heavily I'm gonna tread

00:28:08   on those apps in the review.

00:28:09   I think I'm gonna see how much they advance

00:28:11   during the beta process.

00:28:13   I mean, it's still June.

00:28:15   The last couple releases have been out in September

00:28:17   or October, so there's plenty of time.

00:28:20   But I need to kind of think about how I'm gonna treat

00:28:23   those apps and what I want to say about them.

00:28:25   Because in a way, they are proofs of concept,

00:28:28   but another way, they are shipping in the OS.

00:28:31   Like, they're in the dock.

00:28:33   They are part of the system.

00:28:36   And so, figuring out where that line is,

00:28:39   something I haven't quite done yet,

00:28:41   but I'm excited to get into it.

00:28:43   I think, like we said on the show last week,

00:28:46   I think this version of macOS really is pointed

00:28:50   in a direction where the last couple,

00:28:52   maybe since LCAP, macOS releases have kind of

00:28:56   just been like bumbling around,

00:28:57   they're adding stuff here and there,

00:28:58   but they didn't really feel like there was like a,

00:29:01   this is the direction in which we're marching.

00:29:03   - It's like been in a kind of--

00:29:04   - Mojave has that.

00:29:05   - Cryosleep, like it's just been like,

00:29:08   very little has been added over a long period of time,

00:29:11   and it just felt like this thing is just,

00:29:13   as it is, and it's gonna keep being as it is,

00:29:15   but at least now, no matter kind of how you feel

00:29:18   about some of the stuff in Mojave, it is Mojave,

00:29:21   I still don't know, we spoke about it like a minute ago

00:29:23   and I still can't get it right.

00:29:25   At least now there is a path that macOS is gonna go down,

00:29:31   and I think that makes this one uniquely interesting,

00:29:35   I think.

00:29:36   - I'm excited to explore that, so I feel like if anything,

00:29:38   this review may have more of that sort of thing in it

00:29:41   than previous ones, like the direction the Mac is going in,

00:29:45   how I feel about that, sort of the evidence

00:29:48   to back up my case of this is where things are going.

00:29:50   Like I have, I meant to write about it before connected

00:29:54   but it just didn't pan out.

00:29:55   But this idea that like do these iOS apps,

00:30:00   like I think that furthers the case

00:30:02   that the Mac should have a touch interface

00:30:04   because if you use home on your iPhone and your iPad

00:30:08   and then you open on your Mac,

00:30:09   100% of the time your brain is going to try to reach out and touch it.

00:30:13   That's going to be weird and it's already strange in the beta like, "Oh, I used a mouse

00:30:16   with this app."

00:30:17   And it works fine.

00:30:18   It has menus and clicks and it all works, but visually still it's laid out like a touch

00:30:23   app and some of that sort of stuff I want to explore in the review and there hasn't

00:30:28   been opportunity to do that for a long time so I'm excited to sort of get philosophical

00:30:33   in places where it comes up.

00:30:34   Do you expect a lot of that stuff to change quite significantly over the beta period or

00:30:38   Dude, you reckon those apps are pretty locked in?

00:30:41   - I really don't know.

00:30:42   Especially, Home is easiest to pick on,

00:30:44   because Home is, out of the four,

00:30:47   it's also the worst iOS app.

00:30:48   - Yeah, I was gonna say, like, it also sucks badly on iOS.

00:30:52   - It's not great.

00:30:53   And it uses the most iOS conventions,

00:30:56   so it has the date picker from iOS in it,

00:31:00   which is hot garbage on the Mac.

00:31:02   It looks and feels--

00:31:04   - I mean, it's not good on iOS.

00:31:07   You know, it's a bit clunky.

00:31:08   Oh, use a cursor to move this pin.

00:31:11   I was like, what are we doing?

00:31:12   And it uses a lot of the popovers and stuff

00:31:14   that are very iOS, and the others use the same things,

00:31:18   but to lesser extent, so I really don't know.

00:31:20   I hope that they continue to improve them.

00:31:23   I didn't mean to get it down this rabbit hole,

00:31:25   and I'll pull out after the statement,

00:31:27   but how Apple treats these apps

00:31:29   is how third-party developers will treat theirs.

00:31:31   So if Apple builds these,

00:31:33   and there's a lot of iOS UI elements in them,

00:31:36   then what Apple is saying is Mac apps

00:31:38   now use iOS elements.

00:31:39   Whether or not they were designed for the Mac first

00:31:41   or make any sense with the cursor,

00:31:43   this is how Mac apps are now.

00:31:45   And I want Apple to make them feel more at home on the Mac.

00:31:50   I'm not saying the Mac shouldn't evolve,

00:31:52   the Mac should evolve.

00:31:53   The Mac UI has to evolve if it's gonna survive.

00:31:55   But it doesn't necessarily mean that I want the date picker.

00:31:59   And then obviously it just doesn't work.

00:32:01   Like it's just, it's super weird and it's easy to mess up.

00:32:05   And so I'm hoping they make improvements,

00:32:08   but I'm not holding my breath at the same time.

00:32:10   - So I have some hot reviews coming your way

00:32:13   in a few months time. - What about you, Myke?

00:32:16   What are you gonna do?

00:32:17   - So as I said before, I'm working on reviews

00:32:22   for both watchOS and tvOS.

00:32:24   I'm thinking about creating iOS, what is it?

00:32:30   iBooks author books for both of these

00:32:32   with lots of animations, stuff like that, you know?

00:32:37   I'm really gonna go in depth about the way

00:32:41   that these things work.

00:32:43   Very excited to do that.

00:32:47   And they're gonna be available for $100 each

00:32:51   in the iBook store. - Wow, wow.

00:32:52   - Yep, $100 each.

00:32:55   So yeah, I'm hard at work on both of those.

00:33:02   70,000 word reviews in an iBooks author form.

00:33:07   - We have some real competition going on here.

00:33:11   - Yep, yep.

00:33:12   I'm actually taking some time off of all my work

00:33:16   just to work on those books between now and September.

00:33:20   - Wow.

00:33:24   - I don't think we can compete with that.

00:33:25   I think we're done.

00:33:26   - Nobody can, I'm changing the game.

00:33:28   - It's the animation.

00:33:31   You're saying the nations in the book. That's your secret. That's your, that's the, the

00:33:35   secret sauce Myke as the people say.

00:33:39   Yes, this is my secret sauce for, for what's going to make it worth your $100.

00:33:49   So is it just a hundred or 19, uh, 1999? Um, what's, what's a hundred, a hundred?

00:33:55   No, no, no. We're being straight with this. A cool 100. A cool $100.

00:34:01   That is pretty cool. I mean, like, you know, you're not messing around. You're not saying

00:34:06   it's $100, but it's not. You're just going for it.

00:34:09   I'm not going to lie to you about it. You know, like there's not going to be like a

00:34:12   $200 pro edition or anything. It's just straight up $100.

00:34:17   What's the process like? Have you been taking notes? Have you been...

00:34:20   Nah, nah, nah, do it in one take. And you type into iBooks Other, which is a fantastic

00:34:28   idea to do. Yeah, the day before. So basically, what I'm gonna do is I'm gonna take a few

00:34:38   weeks off just to think. I'm not gonna write it all. And then basically, you know, the

00:34:45   before. So when they announce the dates at the keynote in September, I'll know the

00:34:50   dates and then the day before I'm going to sit down and I'm just going to write 70,000

00:34:55   words. And when I get to 70,000 words, I stop and then I publish straight to iBooks author.

00:35:03   Are you going to write your mark now? I've got to reach text.

00:35:10   No, no, no.

00:35:12   Yeah.

00:35:13   Yeah, that's just gonna I'm just gonna paste the links in line like, you know

00:35:17   Not like that night

00:35:22   Because it's all in play text

00:35:24   So like, you know if you need a link

00:35:26   It's just how much more convenient that can it be then if I say like go to this link and like the link is just there

00:35:31   You want to see the url before you click on it exactly

00:35:33   So that's how you know, i'm not like gonna

00:35:36   Right like you're gonna just get

00:35:41   Right?

00:35:43   Wow.

00:35:44   Is that a concern that you have when you're reading stuff online?

00:35:51   If people are going to catfish you with links?

00:35:54   Well, look, at least you'll know with my reviews that can't happen to you.

00:36:01   Like that is a guarantee.

00:36:03   But you're saying things about other people's reviews in that statement.

00:36:06   No I'm not.

00:36:07   No I'm not.

00:36:08   Don't click any links on 512Pixels.

00:36:10   God knows what you'll end up with. I'm just saying, I'm just saying, like, who knows? Again,

00:36:15   like, you don't know, right? But with me, with my style, you 100% know where you're going when you

00:36:21   click it. You know, like, because you guys, you put these little Easter eggs in there and stuff,

00:36:24   right? Yeah. I don't have any Easter eggs. Mine are just regular eggs. Like, they're just right

00:36:29   there. On the counter for you to see. Pick them up. Please let you have regular eggs, Myke.

00:36:35   No secrets! Just regular eggs in my reviews!

00:36:40   Is there going to be an audiobook version? No. Just plain text in iBooks Author.

00:36:48   I won't have the time! I won't have the time! How am I going to do that? I've got to write it, you know?

00:36:53   Yeah. What things are you going to animate if it's just plain text? What's going to be animated?

00:36:58   No, no, no. The animations, they're going to be in there, right? Just the text is in plain text.

00:37:03   That's why I'm using iBooks Author, because they have all the animations options.

00:37:07   Okay, okay. I'm looking forward to it, Myke. If you ever need an editor...

00:37:12   It's gonna be real good.

00:37:14   No, no. I don't want one.

00:37:16   Right, right.

00:37:17   The editors just slow you down, man.

00:37:18   Okay.

00:37:19   You know, like, I'll be done and then the editor's like, "Oh no, you've got to do more."

00:37:22   I say, "No, I want to do more."

00:37:24   Okay, okay.

00:37:25   Just go for it, you know?

00:37:26   I'm excited for you. Good luck. Sounds like a really good workflow you got going on there.

00:37:33   So yeah, we'll follow back on this in September, before you take the time off to think.

00:37:42   Yeah, it's going to be great.

00:37:44   So yeah.

00:37:45   Yeah.

00:37:46   Very good.

00:37:47   Go think about it.

00:37:48   Alright, today's show is brought to you by Pingdom, the company you offer uptime monitoring

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00:39:09   continued support of this show and relay FM.

00:39:13   So let's bring this thing down to a serious note for a moment because Federico you published

00:39:17   a wonderful article today featuring lots of interesting little tidbits which are good

00:39:23   to see written down somewhere about shortcuts.

00:39:28   So we covered some of this in our live episode last week but there's also some additional

00:39:32   information that you found out.

00:39:35   it seems like that you've really kind of,

00:39:37   you've really got your head around this

00:39:40   and you know, I think you said this in the article,

00:39:43   you had some very interesting conversations

00:39:44   with some developers and stuff over the last week

00:39:46   and it seems like through what you've heard

00:39:49   and through digging through what's available,

00:39:51   you've got a pretty good handle

00:39:54   on what Siri shortcuts are,

00:39:56   what the shortcuts app is gonna be.

00:39:59   So you feeling pretty confident about your information,

00:40:04   what's going on with this? I'm extremely confident about all the things that I

00:40:08   put in the story, yes. Okay. So there are a few areas that I wanted to dig

00:40:12   into. So people should read the article, but there was kind of like, from reading

00:40:17   it, I had some additional questions that I wanted to ask you. Alright, okay. And

00:40:22   then just through talking about this, we'll touch on a bunch of different

00:40:25   areas. I think as well we need to maybe try and like settle on some naming

00:40:30   conventions now. I think we should just go with Siri shortcuts for the ones that

00:40:33   that are currently in iOS, the simple ones, and then shortcuts app or shortcuts will mean

00:40:39   the full application. Does that sound good? Like just as a way to try and give it some

00:40:43   kind of consistency.

00:40:44   Wait, so how do you want to say shortcuts app and...

00:40:48   Or just shortcuts is the app, Siri shortcuts are the simple ones, like the little pieces

00:40:54   of information. What do you want to do?

00:40:55   I don't know. I would say the Siri shortcuts, like they're not necessarily Siri ones, even

00:41:02   though Apple calls everything Siri.

00:41:04   Like if you pull down on Spotlight, you know, the little...

00:41:08   Are those Siri...

00:41:10   Let's call them Siri shortcuts.

00:41:11   Yeah, but that's Siri though, isn't it?

00:41:13   Like that's all part of Siri.

00:41:14   Yeah, it's probably part of Siri.

00:41:16   So let's call it...

00:41:17   Because I don't get those recommendations because I turn the Siri stuff off.

00:41:21   Alright, so let's call them Siri shortcuts and shortcuts.

00:41:23   Yeah.

00:41:24   Alright, great.

00:41:25   How much work do developers really need to do to realistically donate actions to Siri

00:41:30   shortcuts and the shortcuts app?

00:41:32   OK. Do we expect there to be tons and tons of these, or is it going to be so much work

00:41:40   that it's going to put people off?

00:41:41   All right, so it depends on a few things. First of all, a shortcut should be donated,

00:41:50   which is this horrible word that Apple is using. Donating shortcuts means making it

00:41:55   available to the system.

00:41:56   It's like giving it, right?

00:41:58   Giving it to the system.

00:42:00   Maybe that's why they didn't choose that, because just over and over saying "giving

00:42:04   it to the system" is just very strange.

00:42:06   It's the good Samaritan developers making donations to the system.

00:42:10   Hey look, the system is needy, we can help it out by giving it these things.

00:42:14   Just get on board.

00:42:16   Yeah.

00:42:17   So the first thing to consider is that a shortcut makes sense if it's a repeatable action that

00:42:25   is timely, that is not just a one-time deal. So let's say that you're using Todoist and

00:42:33   you're saving a to-do for "I need to buy milk tomorrow at 2pm." That's not a shortcut because

00:42:41   it's one thing that you're doing once, it's very specific, it's not a routine.

00:42:46   You don't know how much milk I buy.

00:42:49   I was gonna say. However, let's say that the system discovers that you keep doing that

00:42:58   on a regular basis. So Apple is selling the idea of repeatable actions that are based

00:43:06   on user routines and habits, something that the system can surface. So with that in mind,

00:43:14   The second thing to consider is developers can choose between two different APIs.

00:43:19   One of them requires less work, the other requires more work.

00:43:23   The simple one is NSUserActivity.

00:43:26   You may be familiar with this because it's already used in a bunch of places.

00:43:30   It's the same technology that powers Handoff from iOS to iOS or iOS to the Mac and vice

00:43:35   versa.

00:43:36   And it's the same API that powers results in Spotlight on iOS.

00:43:40   This is one of those super smart things that Apple does, right?

00:43:43   Where they build a new technology based upon something that people should already be using

00:43:49   to get other features.

00:43:50   So it makes it so much easier for them to get developer adoption.

00:43:56   Or even if you've never used it before, you can at least go, "Well, I bought it for Siri

00:44:00   Shortcuts and then I get all of these other things for free."

00:44:04   It's very good.

00:44:06   So that's the easy one to implement, but it's also the easy one in practice, because all

00:44:10   you can do with user activities is you can open an app into a specific screen or a specific

00:44:17   piece of content, like a restaurant listing in Yelp.

00:44:23   That is a user activity.

00:44:25   It's a point of interest inside of an application.

00:44:28   The second technology that can use, you may also be familiar with this, is SiriKit, which

00:44:34   is the technology that is used for apps up until now to integrate with Siri via voice,

00:44:40   to be able to say in things, for example, do this or that. So the same API that powers Siri,

00:44:47   and you know the one that shows you the little custom UI when you ask Siri to send a message

00:44:52   or a payment or save a task, can be used to bring up a shortcut. That requires more work from

00:44:58   developers, but also Apple is kind of making it easier for everybody to adopt

00:45:03   circuit because there's a new custom type of circuit integration that

00:45:09   developers can use. Until today, circuit was organized in domains, which are

00:45:13   categories of apps. That was a bit too limiting for types of apps that don't

00:45:19   necessarily fall into one bucket or the other. So now Apple is saying, well

00:45:23   everybody can integrate with circuit by making a custom integration.

00:45:26   What does that mean?

00:45:28   That means that when you open Xcode, there's a new extension point.

00:45:32   When you're creating a SiriKit extension, you can say make it a custom one,

00:45:37   and actually you get, I actually have a photo here for reference,

00:45:41   you get a list of verbs and actions.

00:45:45   It's like a little dictionary that allows you to build your own sort of semantic integration with SiriKit.

00:45:51   And for example, you can say...

00:45:54   >> This is what Marco was asking for on ATP, I think.

00:45:57   >> Yeah. So you can do things like the generic section.

00:46:01   Under generic, you have do, run, or go.

00:46:05   For example, if you want to make an information type of integration,

00:46:09   you can say view or open.

00:46:11   If you want to do share,

00:46:12   you can do share, post, or send.

00:46:15   So this is basically like a little dictionary that

00:46:17   tells Siri how to talk about your integration.

00:46:21   So that if you want to share a tweet,

00:46:23   it'll say "I shared it" instead of saying "I bought it" because it's not like you bought a tweet,

00:46:27   you know, it doesn't make sense. You can, "I bought tweets, baby, this is how we're gonna get 'em!"

00:46:32   So it's a way for developers to make a custom intent that follows a specific set of definitions.

00:46:39   I mean, I'm not a developer, but just looking at the screenshot, it makes sense to me,

00:46:44   so visually speaking. So from the perspective of being a developer or a user, like,

00:46:50   Yes. Why would you choose one or the other?

00:46:52   Like, what more do you get going with this Siri custom intents that can be given up,

00:46:58   that can be donated as shortcuts as opposed to just using NSUserActivity?

00:47:01   So here's what I think will happen.

00:47:03   Lots of apps will use the NSUserActivity because it's built in, it's already, it's been available since iOS 8,

00:47:12   and it makes sense to launch apps into specific screens.

00:47:20   It's something that we've been doing for years with stuff like Launch Center Pro or Launcher.

00:47:25   So I expect the adoption of an SUSE activity type of basic shortcuts to be massive because

00:47:32   it's so little work for developers.

00:47:37   For SiriKit, I think the custom intent makes a lot of sense if you have information type

00:47:46   stuff.

00:47:47   want to show users something like a little piece of content

00:47:53   without having to open the app.

00:47:55   Could be a hotel reservation, could be a restaurant

00:47:58   reservation, could be a document, could be an image,

00:48:01   could be anything.

00:48:02   So expect the informational type of response

00:48:05   from Siri to be quite useful.

00:48:09   So would it be safe to assume that the example they

00:48:12   were showing with Phil's coffee, that was a custom intent?

00:48:17   I think so, yeah.

00:48:18   Because it had an image and you could press a button.

00:48:21   That's an example.

00:48:22   Right, okay.

00:48:23   And it says, "I've ordered your coffee."

00:48:24   So that's exactly, I think, one type of custom intent.

00:48:27   Oh, okay.

00:48:28   Because it's also customizing the response.

00:48:31   Yes, exactly.

00:48:32   So not only can you customize the image that you see in the little series snippet, you

00:48:38   can also add buttons around the little custom UI, and you can customize what series has.

00:48:45   So, yeah.

00:48:46   about with buttons here? Like how interactive can they be?

00:48:51   Is that it?

00:48:53   Yeah. You cannot have something like a calculator in a Siri snippet.

00:48:58   So I'm sorry James, but you cannot bring Pico to Siri.

00:49:03   I'm sure he thought about it, but that's not possible.

00:49:06   He did. I actually spoke to him. He asked and they said no.

00:49:11   It's like, no, you can't do that.

00:49:13   Even though, and I wanted to say that even though Apple is sort of reusing

00:49:17   SiriKit, it's not like every single SiriKit action should make sense as a

00:49:24   shortcut. Again, Apple is stressing the idea of shortcuts should be something

00:49:31   that users want to access frequently. So if you send a one-time payment to Myke

00:49:38   like over Venmo or PayPal, maybe that's not a shortcut because you've done it one time

00:49:44   in a year, but if you send it on a weekly basis, then maybe that should be a shortcut.

00:49:49   So ultimately it's up to developers to figure out what should be a shortcut.

00:49:54   And that's why Apple is basically saying, if you think that this action that a user

00:50:01   does should be a shortcut, you should have a little button that says "Add to Siri" so

00:50:07   that the users can make a custom shortcut

00:50:10   and have a custom phrase for it.

00:50:12   But otherwise, it's up to the system

00:50:16   to figure out with the machine learning stuff

00:50:19   that Apple is saying they're using,

00:50:21   with the predictive system that they have, to say,

00:50:25   even though you haven't added the custom phrase,

00:50:28   maybe you should see this little shortcut

00:50:30   to order pizza on Tuesday in your spotlight screen.

00:50:34   So it's a fascinating twofold approach here of,

00:50:39   you can either have a custom phrase

00:50:41   because the user decided to make this action shortcut,

00:50:45   or you can let the system predict it for you.

00:50:47   I want to see how it will play out because like,

00:50:52   right now I don't have a lot of faith

00:50:54   in the predictive type stuff,

00:50:58   but also it's, I gotta see what happens

00:51:01   when I'm actually using iOS 12 for like a month

00:51:04   and when I have 50 apps that offer shortcuts to the system,

00:51:08   will it scale?

00:51:09   Will it actually understand my habits?

00:51:11   We'll see.

00:51:12   I have a lot more faith in the custom phrase approach

00:51:16   because it's something that I create,

00:51:17   something that I want to use.

00:51:19   - Yeah, I mean, and maybe it's limited

00:51:21   just because I work from home,

00:51:23   but I feel like the stuff it's doing now to predict stuff,

00:51:27   just, it doesn't seem super relevant to me.

00:51:30   And again, maybe that's because I have a lack of structure.

00:51:33   Like, I went to the same office

00:51:36   and the same coffee shop every day,

00:51:38   maybe it would work better.

00:51:39   But for me, I'm kind of the same,

00:51:41   but as you were like, I want to see how it works,

00:51:43   but I feel like I'm going to be using

00:51:45   the custom voice triggers a lot more

00:51:47   than things that it suggests to me.

00:51:50   - Yep, I agree.

00:51:51   - So I have a conceptual question, really.

00:51:55   Because I've been thinking about this.

00:51:57   All of the shortcuts, the suggested shortcuts,

00:52:00   and the way that people can build shortcuts in the app. Is this a good thing or a bad thing for

00:52:06   developers? Because especially if you have a large company, you have a pretty large user base, you

00:52:12   have an application that is pretty big in nature, surely the company wants their users to be opening

00:52:21   the application and using it and seeing everything that the app has to offer, promoting new features,

00:52:25   you know, that kind of stuff. Like, do developers, do companies want to be relegated to being just

00:52:31   a set of features rather than offering their overall experience? Which, you know, no matter how

00:52:36   we may view it, every large company believes that the experience that they offer is better

00:52:42   than anything else available, right? Like, otherwise, what are they doing, you know?

00:52:46   So what do you think about that? Do you think that this might be a thing that holds some developers

00:52:53   off because they don't want to be just relegated to like, Lego blocks?

00:52:57   It doesn't make sense for companies like Twitter and Facebook that want you to open the app

00:53:01   and see ads and contribute to their statistics. I would be surprised if these big companies

00:53:08   have tons of shortcuts because as you mentioned, it will give people a way to accomplish the

00:53:14   same functionality without having to open the app. Also because of course Apple is being

00:53:19   extremely serious with their privacy approach here. These extensions run in a secure process.

00:53:29   Just the information that you need is exchanged between Siri and the extension. So if Facebook

00:53:36   had a way to bring up a user profile in Siri, maybe I wouldn't navigate to a friend's profile

00:53:42   page in the Facebook app, and I'm not sure if Facebook wants that. But if you're a smaller

00:53:49   company that is not creepy and doesn't make money off of people's attention, that way

00:53:58   it makes sense to integrate with Siri because it's a good thing to have if you care about

00:54:05   the native iOS experience. And also if we consider the custom shortcuts, and the shortcuts

00:54:15   app, you know, and I believe that the people who put together advanced workflows and stuff

00:54:20   will be a tiny fraction of the folks who are using the basic shortcuts with Siri,

00:54:24   you will still have to open apps, you will still have to open Ulysses if you want to

00:54:31   add something to your, you know, to your, to a document, because as I mentioned in the story,

00:54:40   the circuit integrations will not be able to replace,

00:54:45   at least in the first version,

00:54:48   the more advanced features of existing URL scheme actions.

00:54:53   So we're stuck in this situation where big companies

00:54:58   will probably not want to have really deep serial integrations

00:55:04   I would love to be surprised and see Twitter and Facebook

00:55:07   going on Instagram, having full integrations with SiriKit and shortcuts.

00:55:13   But then, if we're looking at the more niche type of apps, the productivity stuff on iOS,

00:55:21   you will still have to launch apps and open apps because URL schemes and X-callback will

00:55:26   still be more flexible than SiriKit, at least for now.

00:55:32   In the future, I hope not.

00:55:34   But for now, you will still have to open them if you want to do crazy automations.

00:55:38   Do you think that that is a problem for people who want to get started with this?

00:55:43   Do you think that's like a hurdle that they're going to have to figure out?

00:55:46   So based on what I've seen so far, I think there's a really nice path, starting with

00:55:51   simple shortcuts and suggested shortcuts, whether it's in the Spotlight page or the

00:55:57   lock screen and go into the more custom automation stuff.

00:56:03   Honestly, I believe that if you're reading a workflow,

00:56:07   there will be little to no learning curve in switching to shortcuts.

00:56:12   But if you're new to this stuff,

00:56:14   if you've never done automation before,

00:56:16   I think it's done well enough in the sense that you swipe down to search for an app,

00:56:23   which is something that most people do, and you will see suggestions, and you will see shortcuts.

00:56:29   I'm not sure if hiding the custom phrase stuff in settings is a good idea,

00:56:40   because you need to open settings, navigate to Syrian search, and then view the shortcuts.

00:56:45   Maybe there could have been a way to make that stand out a little more.

00:56:51   Well, I would guess that they're hoping that Apple won't need to be who shows you it, right?

00:56:57   Like the third-party apps will show you with the buttons that they've made.

00:57:01   That's the hope, yeah. So I was about to say that. Maybe they're just hoping that apps will

00:57:06   bring up this Siri UI, saying you won't have to open settings. If that's the case, then I think

00:57:13   I think it should be quite easy for people to get started.

00:57:17   Because if you're using Yelp or I'm trying to think of iOS apps that actually do adopt

00:57:24   features.

00:57:25   I don't know.

00:57:26   Yelp is a good example.

00:57:29   Instagram, I don't know.

00:57:32   Telegram is a good example.

00:57:34   If you're using these apps and you see Siri shortcut buttons and you will say, "Oh, what's

00:57:39   this?"

00:57:40   understand the potential for custom phrases, then maybe you will start using them.

00:57:47   And also swiping down and also notifications on the lock screen.

00:57:51   I think it should be enough, but again, it depends on what developers do.

00:58:00   Because it's, you know, it's hard to explain to people the concept of automation, which

00:58:06   Which is why I think it's clever that Apple is doing this more lightweight version of

00:58:12   shortcuts in that you don't have to put together a workflow for everything, but the system

00:58:17   can suggest your basic actions.

00:58:18   I think that's a clever choice.

00:58:21   So I think one thing that has me potentially excited about this is that Siri is more than

00:58:26   just on my phone, right?

00:58:27   It's on my watch and of course it's on my HomePod.

00:58:31   How can you tell so far that this stuff is going to be surfaced on those other devices?

00:58:37   Can I walk into my office and just shout to my HomePod and things happen?

00:58:40   Is it going to be a limited set?

00:58:42   Do you have any feel for that yet?

00:58:44   That's a good question.

00:58:45   So you will be able to access your custom phrases for shortcuts on the HomePod using

00:58:51   personal requests.

00:58:53   So it will be part of that.

00:58:56   The problem here, which is actually a little mini section in the story, is the ability

00:59:02   - and this is a problem, of course, for basic shortcuts, for custom shortcuts - the ability

00:59:09   for a shortcut to execute both visually, so if you have an iPhone, if you have an iPad,

00:59:17   and in an audio-only environment.

00:59:21   This is actually one of the features that the workflow team was working on, being able

00:59:27   to have the same workflow, but making it run in a bunch of different places.

00:59:32   So Workflow used to have an Apple Watch app, Shortcuts doesn't anymore, but they also used

00:59:37   to have a widget.

00:59:40   And the widget was actually this really important piece of technology because it allowed you

00:59:46   to run entire workflows in the background

00:59:50   without having to open the workflow app

00:59:52   unless you came across an action that required an interaction

00:59:57   that couldn't be built into the widget, such as typing text,

01:00:01   because Apple doesn't want you to type text

01:00:03   with the keyboard into widgets.

01:00:05   And the idea with shortcuts and the Apple Watch and CarPlay

01:00:09   and the HomePod is essentially the same.

01:00:11   How can you make the same shortcut work everywhere?

01:00:15   So for app shortcuts, I'm not sure how developers will be able to confirm actions without having a UI.

01:00:28   So if I want to order a coffee, will I be able to use it both on my iPhone, where I can see the

01:00:34   little restaurant snippet menu and a button that says confirm? Will I be able to do the same on the

01:00:40   the Apple Watch and on the HomePod, I'm not sure yet. What I'm pretty confident about

01:00:47   is that if you put together a custom shortcut, so a workflow, and you have actions such as

01:00:55   choose from list or ask for input, stuff that requires you on iOS to type text or choose

01:01:03   from a list of items or choose from a menu, you will not be able to have that in the first

01:01:11   version of shortcuts when a shortcut is running via Siri. Because my understanding is that

01:01:17   Siri, at least in the first version of iOS 12, will not have the ability to say, "Oh,

01:01:23   here's a list of items in your shortcut. Choose one of them." Or usually here you would type

01:01:29   some text, but now you can just speak it to me. So it will not be interactive like that.

01:01:35   So to answer your question, will I be able to walk into my office and shout things to

01:01:40   the HomePod, it depends on the shortcut that you want to run. If it can be executed via

01:01:46   audio only, then yes. If it requires you to interact with the shortcut in some way, it

01:01:52   will probably tell you to continue on your iPhone. As for right now, you can set up custom

01:01:59   phrases, you can ask the HomePod to execute one of them, but it will give you an error

01:02:04   because I think it needs an update.

01:02:06   So at least that's what happened with my three HomePods.

01:02:11   None of them wanted to run my custom shortcuts, which makes sense because the system...

01:02:16   People are actually seeing all these workflows show up in the settings.

01:02:22   I'm pretty sure that's actually a bug because workflow hasn't been updated for iOS 12 and

01:02:28   an API for iOS 12 only which dictates how and when user activities show up in settings under shortcuts.

01:02:35   So yeah, it depends Steven on what you want to do with your home pod.

01:02:41   So you mentioned in your article that you're very confident that you will be able to bring over all

01:02:49   of your existing workflows and they'll basically be unchanged when it moves over to shortcuts.

01:02:55   So I wondered, as far as you're aware, will it be possible for me to take an existing workflow and

01:03:01   add new shortcuts to it? Is this stuff going to be able to be mixed and matched between? Can I use

01:03:08   the old, more complicated versions and functionality with the new functionality?

01:03:15   So the idea is that all your workflows will just migrate over to the new format. Because

01:03:22   Shortcuts will have the same actions, will have the same features.

01:03:25   It will mostly look the same. I mean, we've seen the screenshots.

01:03:29   The idea is that once you have all your old workflows into shortcuts,

01:03:34   there won't be any difference between the old ones and the new ones.

01:03:38   So yes, you will be able to add all of the new actions that shortcuts will offer.

01:03:44   because what I understood is that Apple doesn't want to end up in a situation where all the

01:03:55   workflow users are upset because they lost a bunch of functionality in the transition

01:03:59   to shortcuts.

01:04:00   That's great.

01:04:01   And that's great news because it means that not only are we getting new system features,

01:04:06   but also we can keep the old ones and we can live happily ever after, ideally.

01:04:10   Best I love you.

01:04:12   That's the best I love you timeline.

01:04:14   So yes, I don't know. I'm not sure if shortcuts will replace Workflow on the App Store, so

01:04:21   you'll just basically update the app and you have shortcuts. Or if it will be a separate

01:04:25   app and there will be some kind of feature or tool to move over your old workflows. I

01:04:32   would be surprised if shortcuts kept the same old Workflow sync account mechanism. I'm pretty

01:04:42   it's going to move to iCloud.

01:04:44   So, that said, it could be an update

01:04:47   or it could be a new version, but I think --

01:04:50   and I'm pretty confident, actually,

01:04:52   that nothing should break.

01:04:56   So, at least that's what I've been hearing recently.

01:05:02   But we'll have to see, of course,

01:05:04   once there's a beta and once Shortcuts launches,

01:05:07   sometimes in September, I assume.

01:05:10   -One last question for you.

01:05:11   So when creating these custom shortcuts in the shortcuts app, do you have any idea if it will be possible?

01:05:18   So like for example, I can create shortcuts for many many many activities, right?

01:05:23   Like and I need to go into individual applications to surface all of the different things that I can that I can create

01:05:31   shortcuts for series shortcuts for

01:05:33   Do you know of any sense that if I'm in the shortcuts app?

01:05:37   Will I be able to surface these or do I need to like find them all first?

01:05:42   Do you follow what I'm saying? Like yeah in the old workflow you had a list of everything workflow could do

01:05:47   Is that going to be the same with shortcuts?

01:05:49   Yes

01:05:51   Because that's big that could be a lot of stuff, right? Yeah. Yeah, you will see

01:05:55   Again, this is my understanding right now

01:05:59   You will see both the new native app shortcuts sheets or series shortcuts

01:06:07   and the old apps category with the URL scheme stuff.

01:06:12   - Every action that is donated to the system

01:06:17   to become a Siri shortcut will show in the shortcuts app.

01:06:21   - Yes.

01:06:22   - Wow.

01:06:23   - Yes.

01:06:24   - That's, what's interesting about that is it's very big

01:06:27   and can be very varied depending on the user.

01:06:29   - Is there any sort of privacy angle there?

01:06:32   Like does it sync that NS user records across iCloud?

01:06:36   Like if someone picked up my iPad, they could see everything I'm doing on my phone.

01:06:40   Because those records are like breadcrumbs on what you're doing across a bunch of different

01:06:45   apps.

01:06:46   So I don't think that that information syncs with iCloud, because that is just exposed

01:06:54   to the system.

01:06:55   What syncs with iCloud, I think, is when you add a custom phrase to a shortcut, but just

01:07:02   like your iPad doesn't know which apps you have installed on your phone. I mean, unless

01:07:07   you use Screen Time, which maybe also it kind of does. Apple is doing some new things this

01:07:12   year with keeping track of a user's installed apps. I mean, I'm sure everything will be

01:07:18   encrypted but especially if you consider Screen Time where it's not like you have a separate

01:07:23   instance of Screen Time for iPhone and Screen Time for iPad, then the iPad already kind

01:07:28   and else which apps you're using on the phone, then maybe the answer is I don't know, because

01:07:35   Apple must be keeping track of these things somewhere. I don't think that workflow on

01:07:40   the iPad will say, "Hey, I know that you have OpenTable on your iPhone, why don't you put

01:07:47   OpenTable here as well?" I don't think that will happen, but again, screen time is a precedent

01:07:52   in this case, so I'm not sure. Myke, there's a...

01:07:56   I think with iOS 12 there are a bunch of areas where it's like

01:07:59   It's like a local privacy thing and it can be a problem depending on your situation, right? That both screen time and

01:08:07   Siri shortcuts, they're gonna start servicing things and

01:08:11   You know if people pick up your devices then yes

01:08:15   They will be able to learn new things about you and as of all this stuff, right?

01:08:19   Like when we're talking about the sharing of a touch ID or whatever

01:08:23   That's just going to be on you and your home situation as to whether you're cool with that or not, I guess.

01:08:28   Right. Yeah. There's a couple of details that I need to mention to answer your question, Myke.

01:08:36   The first one is that actually app integrations or app shortcuts in the shortcuts app, super confusing,

01:08:43   confusing. The Siri shortcuts will have a toggle on them that says "show when run"

01:08:50   so that you can choose to actually see the little Siri UI or not if you're

01:08:57   running the shortcut in Siri for example. And if "show when run" is disabled,

01:09:02   Siri will just execute the action and breeze through, move on to the next step.

01:09:08   So not even needing to open applications anymore, right?

01:09:11   - Not because SiriKit it's all done in the background.

01:09:13   - Damn.

01:09:14   - Unless, I mean, the user activity stuff,

01:09:17   if you say, take me to this page in OpenTable,

01:09:20   then of course we will have to launch the app.

01:09:22   - Yeah, there's nothing it can do.

01:09:23   - But if it's a SiriKit intent,

01:09:24   it will just run in the background.

01:09:26   Also, the big catch maybe,

01:09:32   is that these Siri shortcuts, these native actions

01:09:37   are not as customizable as what we have today with X Callback in Workflow. Meaning that shortcuts are

01:09:46   offered by apps as they are. They won't have custom fields in them when you add them to a

01:09:56   shortcut. So for example today in Workflow you can say add two things, that's an action. And when you

01:10:03   add this action to a workflow, you have a bunch of fields that you can fill yourself,

01:10:08   such as title or due date. That will not be possible with Siri shortcuts in the first

01:10:15   version in iOS 12, because these shortcuts are effectively pre-made, they're not user

01:10:21   customizable, they shouldn't accept any custom input, they will not set any custom output.

01:10:29   And if you actually take a look at the screenshots shared by Apple, they are not connected to

01:10:36   any other action.

01:10:37   So the vertical line that runs through a workflow or a custom shortcut stops when it runs through

01:10:44   a native shortcut.

01:10:46   Because again, they are little standalone entities that are not like the current X callback

01:10:54   actions.

01:10:55   That, I think, is, of course, the next big step, right,

01:10:57   of being able to have intents

01:11:02   that are actually user customizable.

01:11:03   And at that point, and Steven is going to maybe hate me

01:11:07   or love me for saying this,

01:11:10   what's the difference with HyperCard, really,

01:11:13   where you have a program that gives you a little UI

01:11:16   that you can customize and make your own?

01:11:19   Right now, Circuit Intents

01:11:21   are just extensions offered by developers.

01:11:24   - Huh, I'm A, I'm just proud that you know what HyperCard is.

01:11:28   But B, I think that's why this stuff is so exciting.

01:11:31   It's the same reason that HyperCard is exciting

01:11:34   and the same reason that Automator was exciting

01:11:36   because it brings, these are,

01:11:40   I don't know, we've quabbled over this term over the years,

01:11:45   but these are intro to development type tasks.

01:11:50   Learning how a computer can do things on its own

01:11:53   is the first step in development.

01:11:55   And you may not make it past that first step,

01:11:57   I surely haven't, I'm not a developer,

01:11:58   but I can automate stuff.

01:11:59   And this coming to iOS is a huge step down the road of,

01:12:05   is iOS, are iOS devices computers?

01:12:09   And I know not the way you think about them,

01:12:11   not the way I think about them,

01:12:12   but in the broadest sense,

01:12:14   having a device that you can develop on

01:12:17   is a really big milestone in the lifetime of a platform.

01:12:20   and this is another step down that road.

01:12:23   And that's why it's so exciting because for the first time,

01:12:26   it's from Apple, right?

01:12:27   It's not like these crazy workflow guys

01:12:30   building this amazing tool from the outside.

01:12:32   Like now the automation's coming from inside the house.

01:12:35   Like they are in the system, they are in Siri,

01:12:39   and that's a huge step forward.

01:12:41   So I think comparing it to something like Hypercard

01:12:43   or Automator or even the terminal to a degree,

01:12:47   I think that's fine because it's an important step in the evolution of a platform.

01:12:53   Cool. So you love me for saying that.

01:12:54   I do. Best I love you.

01:12:55   Okay. Thank you. All right.

01:12:57   All right. Before we move on from this, there's just a couple of things I just want to run through super quick

01:13:02   that were just small details from the article, which were exciting to me.

01:13:05   The share extension, URL schemes, and the widget will remain.

01:13:08   Action extension. People are going to correct you.

01:13:11   So, yeah.

01:13:13   Yeah, the action extension and the share sheet.

01:13:16   HomeKit support is added, which is amazing.

01:13:21   There was one thing that I thought of.

01:13:23   I don't know if I mentioned this in the show or not, but it's kind of cool.

01:13:25   Like even apps, even like devices that aren't HomeKit devices

01:13:29   could in theory work with all of this stuff.

01:13:31   Oh, yes. They could just surface a shortcut, which I think is also kind of cool.

01:13:35   Show result is that you're excited about show result, right?

01:13:40   What is that?

01:13:41   It's one of the new actions that should make it in the shortcuts app. It's a way to show

01:13:48   results in Siri. And the beautiful thing about this action is that you can mix and match

01:13:53   plain text and magic variables. So you can define your own custom response in Siri. And when the

01:14:03   shortcut runs, it'll assemble the variables and it'll show you the results. I think that's a

01:14:08   Could show result also be read out loud on the HomePod?

01:14:12   Yep. Yep.

01:14:14   Interesting. No dictation of text into this stuff.

01:14:18   So like, the idea would be, we go right the way back to the beginning

01:14:22   of the show, you can't say like,

01:14:26   the idea is you can't dictate a result before or after

01:14:30   you give a shortcut command. So you can't say like, add a new task

01:14:34   to Todoist that says blah blah blah. That's two separate actions right? The idea would be

01:14:40   that if you have yes if you have a shortcut with a custom phrase you cannot mix and match the custom

01:14:45   phrase with some other words because those words will not be treated as input by the shortcut. What

01:14:53   I want to see is workflow has a dictate text action that brings up the native dictation UI on iOS. What

01:15:01   What happens if you use DictateText and you ask Siri to run a custom shortcut?

01:15:09   Will it just fall back into "Just tell me and I'm actually doing the dictation for you?"

01:15:18   Or will it say "You need to use your iPhone for that?"

01:15:20   So we'll see what happens there.

01:15:22   Fingers crossed on that one.

01:15:24   And Play Media, what does Play Media entail?

01:15:27   Play Media is this new intent for SiriKit, which in theory should allow radio apps, podcast

01:15:35   apps and music apps, even though some people on Twitter disagree because they said that

01:15:40   Apple is making this just for radio and podcasts.

01:15:43   Long form, right?

01:15:44   Yeah.

01:15:45   It should allow background playback for third party audio sources.

01:15:52   Now, in their demos, Apple showed the daily, so a podcast that was using this intent.

01:16:00   It shows up as a shortcut.

01:16:03   You can ask Siri.

01:16:04   You can make a custom shortcut with these actions.

01:16:08   But the big question is, do developers need to ask users to create the shortcut?

01:16:16   I don't think you will be able to say "Siri, play my podcast, play connected episode 200

01:16:26   in Overcast".

01:16:27   You will probably have to create a custom phrase yourself first inside Overcast.

01:16:34   So if Marco decides to support shortcuts in Overcast, there could be a button in your

01:16:39   queue that says "add your queue to Siri" and then you will have a shortcut for your Overcast

01:16:45   queue. I don't think this will be an intent in the sense of like todoist or things for

01:16:51   example where you can just say anything you want and it'll work. I think you will have

01:16:56   to add the custom phrase first. But I'm not sure. Because there's basically no documentation

01:17:03   for this. If you open the play media intent page on developer.apple.com it's empty. Just

01:17:09   a bunch of API names. There's no descriptions, no guidelines, no nothing.

01:17:13   - They forgot.

01:17:15   - Yeah, I would love to have some clarification

01:17:18   on this actually, if it applies to music apps.

01:17:21   Does it mean the Spotify can use this?

01:17:23   Ideally, I saw there in the EPI,

01:17:25   there's support for artwork and track names.

01:17:29   That should be enough for a music app,

01:17:31   but again, I don't know.

01:17:32   So it's unclear.

01:17:34   - I just find myself getting increasingly more excited

01:17:37   about this the more I find out,

01:17:39   and it's usually the other way around, right?

01:17:42   Like usually you find out about something

01:17:44   and then you think about it, you get really excited

01:17:47   and then you find out the limitations.

01:17:49   But all of the limitations, they're not off-putting to me

01:17:52   because all of the limitations are not limiting anything

01:17:55   I could do before.

01:17:57   So everything that we're getting is just added stuff.

01:18:01   Like I find myself just becoming more and more excited

01:18:04   about this the more we find out about it.

01:18:06   Oh boy, please just Apple, come on,

01:18:10   Just give us the shortcuts app.

01:18:12   Just give us it.

01:18:13   Give us the beta.

01:18:14   Just put up a beta.

01:18:15   Either test flight or make it built in

01:18:17   and then remove it for the final release.

01:18:19   It's fine.

01:18:20   This is the perfect app that needs a beta with 5,000, 10,000

01:18:24   people.

01:18:24   It's the perfect beta testing scenario.

01:18:27   It needs to be tested.

01:18:29   Developers need to be able to test that this stuff is

01:18:31   going to work.

01:18:33   I'm very confident they will do it.

01:18:35   I just want it to happen really quickly.

01:18:36   Yeah, exactly.

01:18:37   Yeah.

01:18:38   All right.

01:18:39   It's not all iOS on this show, we should talk about Mac OS Dark Mode, but before we do,

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01:20:53   So, uh, Steven, will you please wax lyrical, um, about the next version of Mac OS's dark mode?

01:21:00   I honestly, I don't remember the name. Like, I don't know what's wrong with me. I have, like, a

01:21:05   spot in my brain. Come on, you can do it. Come on. Was it Mojave? No! Oh, gosh. It's a long E. Mojave.

01:21:15   Because I constantly second-guess myself. This is the problem. Yeah. I don't know how long this

01:21:20   is going to take? Well you got a year then it'll be gone. No because then it'll be just

01:21:27   like high Mojave or something like that I don't know. Sandy Mojave. Yeah so this dark

01:21:33   mode is really part two of something that was introduced back in 2014 with Yosemite

01:21:38   talked about earlier in the show. Yosemite come came with a dark theme and that has continued

01:21:44   to be the case until today I run it on all my Macs and it makes the menu bar and the

01:21:50   dock and a couple other things dark but

01:21:53   it's not anywhere close to being a

01:21:55   cohesive experience. All the the window

01:21:58   UIs and everything else are still

01:22:00   bright but you know the menu bar and the

01:22:02   dock are along the edges of the screens

01:22:04   and my iMac Pro has these ridiculous

01:22:05   bezels of black glass of like four inches

01:22:07   wide so it helps kind of settle things

01:22:09   in and I've used it since it since it came

01:22:12   out. This though is something far

01:22:14   different. It is much more than just a

01:22:17   reskin of the menu bar and the dock. It

01:22:19   It actually, every system window, every control has been revisited.

01:22:27   It is very thorough.

01:22:29   Even in the first beta, it's hard to find places where it's broken or where, oh, Apple

01:22:34   forgot about that corner of the US.

01:22:36   There are things within apps, like iTunes is sort of hilariously broken, but I assume

01:22:40   the iTunes team wasn't brought into this very recently, so I have no doubt that they will.

01:22:45   Is there an iTunes team?

01:22:46   Oh, what?

01:22:47   - For what?

01:22:48   - I'm sure the intern will get right on that.

01:22:50   And no, they'll get their app tuned up,

01:22:52   and I think by the time this launches,

01:22:53   anything that comes with macOS will be polished

01:22:57   and ready to go.

01:22:58   There are a couple of things here that are interesting.

01:22:59   Apple calls this an appearance.

01:23:02   They don't call it a theme.

01:23:04   In the sessions, in the OS, in the documentation,

01:23:07   it is an appearance.

01:23:09   - What's the difference?

01:23:10   - I don't really know.

01:23:12   I just think it's interesting that they're really,

01:23:15   really stuck on that word.

01:23:16   It's actually a word that Apple has used in the past.

01:23:19   Mac OS 8 had a parents manager.

01:23:22   Maybe it's just 'cause it's an Apple-y word

01:23:24   that just used it, but they're very consistent with it.

01:23:26   And there's kinda like three tenets that they spoke about.

01:23:31   They say dark interfaces are cool,

01:23:33   which is, can't argue with that.

01:23:35   Dark interfaces are not just inverted versions.

01:23:39   So in my article, I inverted a screenshot of High Sierra

01:23:44   and boy it looks bad.

01:23:46   - We were playing around with it as well

01:23:50   where it was quite funny to put things into dark mode

01:23:53   and then invert, that looked real weird.

01:23:55   - It's not great.

01:23:57   That is an accessibility option.

01:23:58   There are people who that is super helpful for.

01:24:02   But it's not the way to build a true dark appearance.

01:24:04   The last point they talk about in sessions

01:24:06   is that dark mode is content focused.

01:24:08   And we all remember that from like iOS 7

01:24:11   and then later Yosemite, like oh,

01:24:14   The window treatment is, it just gets out of the way

01:24:17   and your content is front and center, blah, you know,

01:24:19   all that sort of thinking is present here.

01:24:22   And it kind of works, like there's a reason

01:24:24   things like Final Cut and Logic have dark modes,

01:24:26   because when you're working in content creation apps,

01:24:29   you want the UI to sort of fade back

01:24:33   and you can really see your content,

01:24:34   and they've brought that to everything from the Finder

01:24:37   to system preferences to photos, it's just everywhere.

01:24:40   And I think it works, like you look at these screenshots,

01:24:42   I have my laptop in front of me running dark mode.

01:24:45   And it's sort of a nice calming effect.

01:24:49   I actually kind of really like it.

01:24:51   And it really makes it sort of where

01:24:53   the window chrome and the content of that window

01:24:56   are separate things.

01:24:58   And so I think they've sort of nailed that aspect of it.

01:25:02   There's a screenshot in your article on FiveTalkPixels

01:25:06   where you show mail with its composed screen.

01:25:09   And the composed screen is white?

01:25:11   Yes.

01:25:11   That looks weird.

01:25:12   I don't think that looks very good.

01:25:14   I don't like that.

01:25:15   Yeah, me neither.

01:25:15   That seems like a peculiar choice to me.

01:25:18   So that is an option.

01:25:19   So Mail has this option.

01:25:22   And I haven't really found it anywhere else.

01:25:24   But it's part of the API stuff that if the system is

01:25:30   in dark aqua, which is what they call it,

01:25:32   some apps can-- if developers opt into this,

01:25:35   they can have a setting to say, use dark mode.

01:25:38   Respect what the system is telling me to do.

01:25:40   but in my content areas, keep it a white background.

01:25:44   So male by default, everything is dark.

01:25:47   If you're in dark mode, I set this to show it

01:25:49   in a screenshot, and you're right, it's super weird

01:25:52   and it's really bright, but something like male,

01:25:56   maybe that's helpful if you're--

01:25:58   - I guess if you wanna see how it's gonna look

01:26:00   in the recipient's inbox, right?

01:26:03   You would want it to be white still, I guess.

01:26:05   - Or you get a newsletter, right,

01:26:07   and they haven't set a background,

01:26:09   all sorts of crazy things.

01:26:11   Mail is just the Wild West.

01:26:12   So it's in Mail.

01:26:14   It is in the APIs in the new Cocoa stuff.

01:26:18   So it could be there in other apps.

01:26:20   I only found it in Mail so far.

01:26:22   But yeah, it's--

01:26:23   Do you know if Safari has a dark mode API for websites

01:26:28   to hook into?

01:26:28   Do you know if anything like that exists?

01:26:30   If it does exist, I haven't found it yet.

01:26:33   That I think is conjecture at this point, that oh-- so say

01:26:36   Mac stories is a good example of this,

01:26:38   because I haven't gotten around to it.

01:26:39   Max stories has a light and dark mode and you can set it and it sets cookie I guess and

01:26:43   it remembers that.

01:26:45   No it's not a cookie but yeah.

01:26:46   It's uh... Federico hand

01:26:48   checks it

01:26:49   every time you visit the website. Every request goes to Federico and he

01:26:53   says dark or light and he just remembers everyone. I'm manually approving it.

01:26:57   It's actually something called local storage in Safari but yeah it's

01:27:00   mostly the same idea. He's installing a flash based player

01:27:04   on your system

01:27:06   And that remembers--

01:27:06   Malware.

01:27:07   --if it's light or dark.

01:27:08   TT malware.

01:27:09   Yes.

01:27:10   That is why Apple is now notarizing apps.

01:27:12   Yes.

01:27:13   Because of you.

01:27:14   Yeah.

01:27:15   So what this could do is WebKit could ask--

01:27:17   or the system could tell WebKit, hey, you're in dark mode.

01:27:21   Then it could load a different set of CSS,

01:27:25   depending on the appearance set by the user.

01:27:29   I think that'd be great, because the second you

01:27:31   start browsing websites in Mojave in dark mode,

01:27:35   like your eyeballs explode because most websites are brightly colored.

01:27:38   Actually, the relay site looks really awesome with all the colors we use.

01:27:42   But like, because we dark mode it already.

01:27:44   That's that's the phrase, by the way, dark mode it.

01:27:46   But something like 512 pixels looks out of place.

01:27:48   And so that's something I'm going to address.

01:27:50   But I'm excited about the possibility of all of the websites that I visit

01:27:54   getting dark modes because I prefer that anyway.

01:27:56   I've used the Mac stories dark mode since the beginning.

01:27:59   And it's what I have on all my devices when I go on a new device and it's white.

01:28:03   I'm like, ah, MacStory's broken.

01:28:05   Yeah.

01:28:05   So that's a funny thing to me.

01:28:07   No CSS.

01:28:08   Also, Dark Aqua, that's a good name.

01:28:11   Yeah.

01:28:11   Yeah, so--

01:28:12   I like that.

01:28:13   --in NS appearance, it's Aqua and Dark Aqua,

01:28:16   the other two names.

01:28:16   Dark Aqua sounds like the name of a metal band from the '90s.

01:28:21   Or like--

01:28:22   I was going to say Emo.

01:28:24   But metal's good too.

01:28:25   Yeah.

01:28:26   They're just singing songs about Mac OS interface,

01:28:29   but they're all really sad about it.

01:28:31   Sad water.

01:28:32   Yeah.

01:28:33   - There are a couple of things I think

01:28:34   that are worth touching on.

01:28:36   There's something called vibrancy,

01:28:38   and this has been around really since like iOS 7.

01:28:41   It came to the Mac in Yosemite,

01:28:42   and if you look at the screenshots,

01:28:45   or if you use a Mac now,

01:28:48   the most common place for this is the sidebar in Finder,

01:28:51   where it picks up the background colors

01:28:53   and sort of shines through,

01:28:55   but sort of in a very translucent way.

01:28:59   So my screenshot on my really bad

01:29:01   and blue example wallpapers you could see the sidebar. I genuinely cannot believe that this is

01:29:07   still around. Like, it boggles my mind. Like, I can't honestly like it just seems ugly to me.

01:29:17   I don't like that that transparency. I really I don't know who's using it. Cue tweets for everyone

01:29:23   who's using it. But still, I just like it surprises me that people leave that on when you can turn it

01:29:29   - I run in reduced transparency,

01:29:33   because I don't really care for the vibrancy.

01:29:35   But it's still there, and in dark mode

01:29:37   it does what you think it would do.

01:29:39   But there's also something called desktop tinting.

01:29:42   It's only present in dark mode,

01:29:44   and what it does is it affects

01:29:46   the color temperature of the gray.

01:29:48   So if you have system preferences over a red background,

01:29:51   it's a little bit warmer, it's a little bit pinker.

01:29:53   But if you have it over a blue background,

01:29:56   blue wallpaper, it is cooler

01:29:58   and a little bit bluer.

01:30:00   And it is very subtle,

01:30:02   and I really don't think the screenshots do it justice.

01:30:04   If you see it in person,

01:30:06   you can really tell if you're kind of tuned into that thing.

01:30:08   But that's there across the board in dark mode.

01:30:12   And the keynote there, or in the sessions,

01:30:14   like, well, you know, we didn't want the gray

01:30:15   to contrast with the wallpaper.

01:30:16   Like, no one's ever gonna see it.

01:30:18   Like, it's fine.

01:30:19   But it's there.

01:30:21   - But don't worry,

01:30:22   we'll let the wallpaper shine through, though.

01:30:25   - That's right.

01:30:26   - Okay.

01:30:28   So it's there.

01:30:29   So that's new.

01:30:30   This is not just they just moved all the sliders over

01:30:33   in Photoshop and re-released it.

01:30:35   There is some new technology kind of putting

01:30:38   these appearances together now.

01:30:41   - Now there is something called accent colors,

01:30:44   which I genuinely cannot believe is shipping even in beta

01:30:48   because it leads to some very peculiar color choices.

01:30:53   - Yes it does.

01:30:55   - What is going on with accent color?

01:30:58   - Yeah, so this is a new thing in Mac OS.

01:31:01   So you have Appearance, which is Light Mode or Dark Mode.

01:31:04   That used to be blue and graphite,

01:31:06   so they've reused that name a little bit.

01:31:08   And there's the Highlight Color,

01:31:09   which is the default is blue, and that is what you see.

01:31:12   Like if you're in Chrome or Safari

01:31:14   and you highlight the URL, that color that is the highlight,

01:31:18   that's Highlight Color, so you can change that

01:31:20   from blue to pink to gray to orange or whatever.

01:31:25   There's a bunch of options in there.

01:31:26   That's been there forever.

01:31:27   What's new is accent color.

01:31:28   So before when you were either in blue

01:31:31   or graphite appearance, like if you had a drop down,

01:31:34   the right side of the drop down would be blue double arrows

01:31:36   and it would switch to graphite

01:31:37   if you were in the graphite mode,

01:31:39   which is the one I've used for a long time.

01:31:41   In Mojave, you have, what is it, eight accent colors.

01:31:47   So you have blue, red, orange, yellow, green,

01:31:50   purple, pink, and graphite.

01:31:52   And so that changes those colors.

01:31:53   So if you have a drop down, you can set it to pink

01:31:56   or you can set it to orange or you can set it to green.

01:32:00   And it lets you customize macOS in a way

01:32:03   that you have never been able to do

01:32:04   since the OS X transition.

01:32:06   This is more customization than we've ever seen

01:32:08   post 2001 or so.

01:32:12   But it can lead to some really weird combinations.

01:32:16   I kinda thought that I would like dark mode

01:32:19   with the orange highlight,

01:32:20   'cause I like gray and black and orange together.

01:32:23   But it doesn't look, it doesn't look great.

01:32:26   But on the other hand, I really like the way light mode

01:32:29   and the pink highlight color looks.

01:32:30   Like it's kind of airy and fresh in a way

01:32:32   that's sort of nice.

01:32:33   So you can really customize it.

01:32:35   There's some weird combinations you can do.

01:32:37   I think the green and the yellow look bad all the time.

01:32:40   Like they're too bright or like they're too vibrant.

01:32:43   But they're there and you can play with them.

01:32:47   With the last one, graphite has a few tricks up its sleeve.

01:32:50   So if you set the accent color to graphite,

01:32:53   then you get those gray window controls.

01:32:55   the stoplights instead of red, yellow, green, or just gray like they are in

01:32:59   graphite now. The other seven retain the red, yellow, green stoplight look. So if

01:33:05   you like your window controls being all gray you have to use the graphite

01:33:09   highlight accent color. Graphite accent is also supposed to disable desktop

01:33:16   tinting. So we talked about earlier where the color temperature of the dark mode

01:33:19   changes based on your wallpaper. This accent, graphite accent, is supposed to

01:33:23   disable that. It doesn't seem to be working in the first developer beta. I'm

01:33:27   sure they'll get that fixed, but in the sessions I believe they said if you're

01:33:31   in graphite we're just going to give you a flat, flat gray. We're not going to tin

01:33:35   it. So graphite is a little more subdued. Like the dark mode in the graphite

01:33:41   accent really looks subdued. It's really flat. It really sort of fades away. I

01:33:47   I think it's a really professional, nice look,

01:33:51   but it's one that I'm not sure everyone's gonna love.

01:33:55   I think a lot of people are gonna want

01:33:57   the multicolored stoplights.

01:33:59   - Yeah, I like graphite and have been using that forever.

01:34:06   So I don't know why, I just said it once and then left it.

01:34:10   So tell me, how easy is it for an app to switch over?

01:34:16   Is Apple doing anything to turn app start mode on their own,

01:34:20   or developers have to do something?

01:34:24   So you've got to build your app against the 10.14 SDK.

01:34:29   If you use any images, like static images for buttons

01:34:33   or UI, those are going to need to be addressed,

01:34:36   especially if they don't have transparency on them.

01:34:39   So if you have a button image that has a background,

01:34:41   and that background's invisible normally

01:34:43   because of the way the UI is built,

01:34:45   that's going to be visible now because the UI behind you

01:34:47   might change colors, and then your button is kind of floating

01:34:50   on top with its border.

01:34:52   So there's stuff like that you've got to do.

01:34:54   Apple also is encouraging developers

01:34:57   to not necessarily use fixed colors in their user

01:35:01   interfaces.

01:35:01   If you have like a-- so if you're like Overcast,

01:35:03   you have a branded orange, right?

01:35:05   That's fine.

01:35:06   But if you are just a regular Mac app,

01:35:08   you're just using reds and greens and blues

01:35:11   to denote different things in your UI,

01:35:14   Apple wants you to use the system colors for that.

01:35:17   They're system calls, like use system UI red,

01:35:20   system UI orange or whatever.

01:35:22   And if you do that, those are slightly different

01:35:24   between the light and dark appearances.

01:35:26   And that means your app will feel more at home,

01:35:30   it'll be more harmonious, it'll be less jarring

01:35:33   as a user switches the modes or just operates

01:35:36   in dark mode all the time.

01:35:37   So none of that seems like crazy amounts of work to me.

01:35:41   Again, I'm not a developer, so if it's crazy

01:35:43   amounts of work for your Mac app, I'm sorry, but Apple's pitching it at least to be like,

01:35:49   it's not a big deal. Like if you've been building Mac apps in the modern way, then yeah, it's

01:35:54   going to be a little bit of work, but you're not having to like blow up your UI and start

01:35:59   completely from scratch. And I think that's good because I think that a lot of people

01:36:04   are going to use this. And I think if your Mac app doesn't conform to it or doesn't do

01:36:09   a good job of it, then you're going to stick out like a sore thumb.

01:36:13   And I guess there are going to be apps that aren't going to be updated, but it looks like

01:36:19   for any app that receives any kind of attention, like recently, you're going to be okay.

01:36:26   Yeah, I think that's true for all this stuff.

01:36:28   If you were keeping up and you were building your app against each new release and taking

01:36:32   advantage of what they're telling you to do, then it's not the end of the world when something

01:36:36   big comes down the pipe.

01:36:38   And it's only like how on iOS you'll see like a far too large keyboard for a while, right?

01:36:44   Yeah.

01:36:45   You know, it's just stuff like that.

01:36:46   Yeah, your app's not going to break, you know.

01:36:48   I have one last question for you actually, because I've seen people talking about this

01:36:53   and Apple's website isn't very clear.

01:36:56   Is there a way to have dark mode apply automatically at night?

01:37:00   If there is, it is not currently exposed in System Preferences with the other stuff.

01:37:05   There may be a way to do it on the command line, there may be a way coming, but they

01:37:08   did not discuss it in the in the sessions best I can tell. And this is but

01:37:12   what if you have that thing because there's a desktop wallpaper that

01:37:16   changes right and that doesn't change it to dark mode? I don't I don't think it

01:37:22   does because right now I have that that desktop set and it hasn't changed it

01:37:28   back to light mode so okay I may be wrong but the best I can tell that is

01:37:34   not the case. The only way to change it is to go in there and change it yourself. Now,

01:37:40   that said, Night Shift is part of Dark Mode and it's really bizarre. Like, it feels like

01:37:47   Dark Mode is brighter the later in the day you get, because it warms it up. It's sort

01:37:53   of a weird effect. I'm not sure if there's more fine-tuning to do there, or I'm just

01:37:57   not used to it yet, because I've been using Night Shift on the Mac for a while now in

01:38:01   regular appearance. So my gut says they're still like fine-tuning that in

01:38:07   dark mode. I think it will improve but it's a little weird right now. It

01:38:11   still, you know, it does the temperature shifting correctly but in doing so it

01:38:16   looks a little strange in places. Interesting. Yeah I can I could see that

01:38:20   because like in theory you might not need night shift to affect the dark mode

01:38:30   stuff in any way right yeah all right have you got anything else you want to

01:38:34   add on this no I think that's it I think that's a pretty comprehensive look if you

01:38:38   want to see more see a bunch of screenshots there's a blog post in the

01:38:40   ye olde show notes which you can find where Steven wrap us up so show notes

01:38:46   this week relay dot FM slash connected slash 197 getting so close to that 200

01:38:52   mark it's all the stuff we talked about is their tickets for our New York show

01:38:57   come out and see us. All that stuff is there. There's an email link there. You can send

01:39:02   us an email with feedback. Or you can do it on Twitter, like most people do. You can find

01:39:06   Myke there as @imyke. Myke is the host of a bunch of shows on Relay. So if you like

01:39:11   this podcast, I bet there's a bunch of other stuff on Relay FM that you would enjoy. You

01:39:16   can find Federico on Twitter as @vitticci. He's the editor-in-chief of MacStories.net,

01:39:22   which has, as we talked about, a dark mode. So you can read it in the dark and not wake

01:39:26   up your loved ones, not melt your eyeballs. You can find me on Twitter as ismh and I write

01:39:32   at 512pixels.net. And until next time, gentlemen, say goodbye. Adios.