124: A Bunch of Enterprising Italians


00:00:00   [Music]

00:00:06   From Relay FM, this is Connected, episode 124. Today's show is brought to you by Pingdom,

00:00:12   Ministry of Supply and Blue Apron. My name is Myke Hurley and I am joined by Federico Fettucci.

00:00:18   Ciao Federico. Ciao Myke. And Mr Stephen Hackett. Hi Stephen Hackett. Howdy. So I mentioned to Jason

00:00:25   and snow on upgrade yesterday the upgrade is catching up with this show so

00:00:29   upgrade just posted episode 123 we just posted one episode one well we're about

00:00:34   to today post episode one to four how is this possible because we take Christmas

00:00:40   off yeah upgrade doesn't take time off like like we do so we have to schedule

00:00:46   that's that's not healthy Myke you should take some time off the upgrade is

00:00:50   they need to happen. So basically my recommendation now is we move to daily.

00:00:56   Daily? A daily connected show? Okay. For like two weeks we just go daily.

00:01:01   And it's the same length as a regular weekly episode. We record it once

00:01:06   and just release it in like seven trunks. Okay, what do you want to talk about on a

00:01:10   daily show? I think we start with follow-up as you always do. Okay. So our

00:01:18   rumored 10-inch iPad Pro continues to to make news now it is expected that this

00:01:28   is going to be like a new high-end iPad Pro I don't really know what that means

00:01:33   because the 12.9 is also gonna get updated. No you just go higher end than

00:01:37   the Pro it's the iPad Pro Plus. I mean just keep making it more expensive Tim

00:01:41   it'll totally work. The 9.7 inch model is now going,

00:01:46   according to the rumor, be the low priced option.

00:01:49   So I guess the 9.7 inch iPad Pro we have now sticks around

00:01:54   and then the new 10.5 to 10.9, whatever size it is,

00:01:59   it's all very strange and it's all very confusing

00:02:04   and I have a lot of questions.

00:02:06   One, this kind of reads like the iPad Mini

00:02:09   like is either gonna stay the iPad Mini

00:02:11   and not get updated to like Pro status or just go away.

00:02:15   I don't think they can do that, but the iPad Mini is not in here anywhere.

00:02:19   And I'm not sure, like, so part of this analysis says that this is going to be the thing that finally

00:02:28   stops the free fall the iPad has been, which has been slowing down, to be fair.

00:02:35   But I don't know if I believe that. This seems like more of the same playbook of making nicer

00:02:40   merchants of iPads to get people to upgrade, and when they do, you make more money from it.

00:02:45   I think this feels like just another step down that road and not something to like

00:02:49   stem

00:02:51   You know to change the tide. I don't know. What what do you guys think? I have feelings about this rumor

00:02:57   And none of them are actually answers. Um

00:03:00   I mean i'm thinking about i'm thinking about this new form factor. Um, and I have this idea

00:03:06   That apple is gonna is gonna switch to this bezel free design

00:03:11   Both on the ipad and on the iphone

00:03:15   but that it's not going to be a complete switch across the line.

00:03:20   Like there's going to be one iPad model that adopts this new design,

00:03:24   and there's going to be one iPhone model that switches to this new design.

00:03:28   And the other iPhones and iPads are going to stick around.

00:03:31   So we're still going to get the 9.7 with the current bezel design,

00:03:34   we're going to get the 12.9 updated,

00:03:36   and there's going to be the new version that sits in the middle.

00:03:39   And I have this idea that the bezel-free model is actually going to get thicker

00:03:43   because it doesn't have bezels, it doesn't have the home button

00:03:46   and so to make sure that you're holding a single slab of glass

00:03:49   it's gonna be thicker. I don't know why but I have this idea.

00:03:52   I can see that. I mean they have a lot of stuff behind that top and bottom bezel

00:03:56   and it's gotta go somewhere.

00:03:58   Exactly.

00:04:00   I'd be all for that, I think we talked about this, if it gets rid of the stupid camera bump

00:04:04   which I don't mind on my iPhone.

00:04:06   Like it generally doesn't bother me and I carry my iPhone without a case.

00:04:10   It, like, I hate it on my 9.7 inch iPad Pro.

00:04:14   Anytime I like, maybe it's 'cause I'm rougher with the iPad,

00:04:16   like I slide it across the table or like,

00:04:18   put it on my nightstand, like the camera always like,

00:04:20   catches on something, like at some point

00:04:22   I'm just gonna rip the thing out of the body.

00:04:24   So I would love for that to be flush again.

00:04:26   I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

00:04:29   But I kind of agree with you.

00:04:30   I think this is going to be a,

00:04:32   like a staggered design change.

00:04:34   You think about when they went to the design we have now

00:04:38   with the thinner side bezels,

00:04:39   that first appeared on the iPad mini,

00:04:42   'cause the iPad 4 was still around,

00:04:43   and when the iPad Air came out the next year,

00:04:46   it sort of became a big iPad mini, right?

00:04:48   The same construction, the same bezels.

00:04:51   And so there's precedent for this,

00:04:54   and I think you're right that if they do this,

00:04:56   it's gonna be a big change.

00:04:57   I don't see them doing this to the 12.9.

00:05:00   That thing is, I think,

00:05:03   probably heavier than they want it to be,

00:05:04   so maybe they keep the current construction there but work to get it

00:05:09   thinner and lighter and use this 10.x inch model as like the

00:05:17   new form factor and then you know the next couple years it rolls out everywhere.

00:05:20   I think it's especially interesting to think about a bezel-free design on the

00:05:25   iPad in terms of how it may affect iOS because think about all of the

00:05:31   activation points, all the gestures that you use from the edge of the display on

00:05:36   the iPad, especially multitasking. We have gestures from the edge of the display on

00:05:41   the iPhone 2, but on the iPad, especially if combined with some changes in 10.3,

00:05:45   I assume a bezel-free design would be interesting when you want to activate

00:05:50   multitasking for example, or maybe you want to do drag and drop. I wonder how

00:05:54   this design may be tied to the software and vice-versa. So it'd be

00:05:59   interesting if Apple does a beta 10.3, if we can infer some of the design changes coming

00:06:05   to the hardware to facilitate the changes in the software. So I'm looking forward to

00:06:08   the beta also, not just to see what's actually changing, but also to see if we can guess

00:06:13   what the next hardware is going to be like.

00:06:17   I don't think bezel-free, I mean I think we use the term bezel-free, but I don't think

00:06:22   there will be no bezels. I think that it will be like super thin, but really where we're

00:06:29   we're going to see gains is in the chin and the forehead of the phone, right?

00:06:34   That like it stretches out across on the iPad, like it stretches out and makes everything,

00:06:38   all the bezels a little thinner.

00:06:42   Just because of the things that you mentioned, right?

00:06:44   Like activating side gestures and stuff.

00:06:46   The only other thing that I could assume is if they do go bezel free that they curve the

00:06:50   screen on the edges a little bit.

00:06:53   And then that is what allows you to activate all of the side swiping, which on the iPad

00:06:57   is incredibly important, right?

00:07:00   Because you're actually manipulating parts

00:07:02   of the operating system purely based on these.

00:07:05   So, you know, I think we talk about bezel free,

00:07:08   but I would be really surprised if the first time

00:07:11   that Apple like significantly reduced the bezels

00:07:15   on these devices in a long time,

00:07:16   and I guess on the iPhone it may be in ever,

00:07:19   I think there will still be something there,

00:07:21   but it will be super slight,

00:07:22   and really we'll be getting a lot more benefit

00:07:25   from losing the top and bottom than the sides.

00:07:29   - The big question is what happens to the home button

00:07:31   on the iPad because the current rumor says

00:07:33   there's not gonna be one.

00:07:35   So it's gonna be-- - It doesn't need one.

00:07:37   - I agree.

00:07:38   I think it's gonna be in the screen

00:07:40   and I think the iPad will be a preview of the change

00:07:43   coming to the iPhone as well.

00:07:45   But it's interesting because basically everything

00:07:47   is gonna be based on gestures and there's going to be

00:07:50   touch ID integrated on one side of the display basically.

00:07:53   That's the rumor. - Well, my feeling

00:07:55   different to the iPhone.

00:07:57   I my feeling it just doesn't need

00:07:59   the iPad doesn't need a home button at all

00:08:01   because gestures

00:08:04   to activate those functions

00:08:07   are way easier to achieve with the iPad.

00:08:09   And for me, I don't know about you

00:08:12   guys, but I always

00:08:14   use those gestures, you know, like the

00:08:16   pinch gesture

00:08:18   and the swipe up gesture with the four

00:08:19   or five fingers.

00:08:20   Like that's how I get to the home screen

00:08:23   and get to multitasking on my iPads.

00:08:25   all the time. And I think that with the iPad they can get away with that, right?

00:08:30   Like if they haven't worked out a way to do what I assume is an incredibly

00:08:34   difficult task of embedding a home button in the screen, they could maybe get away with it.

00:08:39   Because as F. Hanshaw in the chat room is suggesting about 3D touch, now I would expect

00:08:46   that a home button embedded in a screen is going to need 3D touch, right? It's going to

00:08:51   need the haptic motors and I'm unconvinced that that is coming to the iPad line.

00:08:58   So I wouldn't be surprised, there's no home button but look how great these gestures are.

00:09:02   That's where I think it might go with the iPad at least but I don't think it would be

00:09:05   that way for the iPhone.

00:09:06   Yeah I mean I don't use gestures much.

00:09:10   I guess the big question for me is what's gonna happen to all of the accessibility features

00:09:16   based on the home button?

00:09:18   what's gonna happen to Siri if you don't have a button on the screen, you know?

00:09:22   But I guess these are also...

00:09:24   No physical hardware button makes the accessibility stuff difficult, whether it's in the screen

00:09:28   or not, right?

00:09:29   Because if there is a home button in the screen, right, if we take it to that perceived idea

00:09:34   of where that's gonna go, you won't feel it.

00:09:37   So it's always gonna be a problem for accessibility reasons.

00:09:41   So I'm interested to see that.

00:09:43   I'm still unconvinced about this home button in the screen idea. I

00:09:47   Remain unconvinced about that as a thing to be honest

00:09:51   And I know that it's like it is an idea and it is a good idea

00:09:55   But it just seems like an a really tricky engineering problem that I'm

00:10:01   Unconvinced Apple has solved like, you know, and I look at the MacBook Pro's as an example of that, you know

00:10:09   like the little touch ID

00:10:11   Section on the on the touch bar and really that should be screen, but it's not

00:10:16   And and so I just remain unconvinced that that is a problem that's solved

00:10:20   But I think that they have time and I like the idea of doing it in one model because it lends

00:10:26   I'm so happy Federico to hear that you are already leaning towards my idea of the iPhone pro prediction

00:10:33   For later in the year. I can't believe you're around already

00:10:37   I didn't say that you said you thought that they might do one iPhone didn't say iPhone Pro

00:10:43   it's but if they do right like if they have if they have an iPhone 7s, which is the

00:10:48   Design that we have right now and then they have another one that's more expensive and has a bezel less design

00:10:55   It would probably be called the iPhone Pro right like it makes sense. I am I

00:10:59   Think I can see that right like that

00:11:02   these are thicker phones that are incredibly expensive like and the iPad

00:11:06   as well like this 10.5 or whatever it's gonna be that thing's gonna be over a

00:11:11   thousand dollars like if they do what we're thinking that they're gonna do

00:11:16   they put it there and the idea of it like taking the iPad out of the

00:11:19   tailspin is it just increases profits right because this iPad appeals to

00:11:24   everyone that bought the pro last year right it's like it's meant for them so

00:11:29   So we buy another one after a year and it pushes the profits up.

00:11:34   And if I get a nice design out of it and a cool new iPad, like I'm happy to give them

00:11:38   my money, I think that's the point.

00:11:42   You're always happy to give them your money.

00:11:44   Well I mean with the iPad, definitely.

00:11:48   Shopping problems return.

00:11:49   So we have a bunch of topics this week, but first Myke do you want to tell us about our

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00:11:54   I most certainly do.

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00:14:16   of this show and Relay FM.

00:14:18   - So up first we're gonna talk about CES, everyone.

00:14:23   favorite Las Vegas event destination dumpster fire. So you know CES

00:14:33   generally the Apple community kind of rolls its eyes at. I think there's some

00:14:36   good reasons there but this year a really interesting story caught our

00:14:39   attention and that is basically Alexa being built in to all all sorts of

00:14:46   things. Mine just turned on it's staring at me. So it's important to kind of break

00:14:52   this down. So the service was built into the Echo, Apple's hardware, or Amazon's

00:14:58   hardware, but there is also a way that third-party hardware manufacturers can

00:15:04   tap into that ecosystem. So there are a couple different ways they can do it.

00:15:07   They can put the voice services package into their hardware or they can

00:15:13   basically pass it off to Amazon directly. So a couple different ways other

00:15:18   companies can build on top of the service. And so we see a lot of this at

00:15:24   CES. Everything from like smartwatches, someone put it in a refrigerator for some

00:15:29   reason, Ford, the auto company is rolling it into their vehicles. So beginning

00:15:36   I think this year you'll be able to talk to your echo and say hey start my car or

00:15:41   hey unlock the doors but eventually it will roll out where it's in vehicle so you

00:15:46   can actually be in your car and talk to it like you can talk to Siri in your car.

00:15:50   So there's this common burn that we're getting into this that Alexa doesn't really work as

00:15:56   an assistant because it is stuck in your kitchen to quote Phil Schiller and that's like that

00:16:01   burn is already out of date like it is changing.

00:16:04   And I find it really fascinating that this thing is just spreading like wildfire.

00:16:12   Well, there's a bunch of points that we need to make otherwise we're just gonna make some people upset.

00:16:18   The obvious first

00:16:20   counter argument would be that Apple is taking a different approach with HomeKit and Siri

00:16:25   which is basically we gotta talk about these two things combined because

00:16:29   Alexa is both an assistant and also a suite of home connected services and devices.

00:16:35   So the big difference is that Siri works internationally and

00:16:40   HomeKit is not limited to the United States

00:16:44   whereas the

00:16:47   Web services and the echo are like available in three countries

00:16:51   I think the US the UK and Germany if I'm not mistaken at this point in the show

00:16:56   I would like to just ask a question. Yes. Okay. Do we say that word or not? I

00:17:01   Muted my my well sure. I've also muted mine, but we could be setting off

00:17:09   devices all around the globe.

00:17:11   - Jason Snell said that that's fine for media to do,

00:17:13   I think so.

00:17:14   - No, I don't think he did.

00:17:15   I would say echo, all right, that we call it the echo.

00:17:18   - No, no, just tell people to mute their speakers right now

00:17:23   because we're gonna say the word.

00:17:25   - As it stands currently, I have taken notes to bleep

00:17:28   every time it is mentioned.

00:17:30   - I think we just say it and you just bleep them all.

00:17:31   I think it'd be hilarious.

00:17:32   - No, I don't want all that work.

00:17:34   I think we should just call it the echo.

00:17:35   I think that that is fair.

00:17:37   - I think we need to live dangerously every once in a while.

00:17:39   No, I don't like to do that.

00:17:40   Just say Alexa.

00:17:42   See, it's fine.

00:17:43   It's fine.

00:17:44   Yeah, but every time you say it, I'm bleeping you, so.

00:17:47   No, no, don't say Alexa.

00:17:49   Don't bleep me, Michael, Alexa.

00:17:50   Come on.

00:17:51   Oh, I just want to say Alexa.

00:17:53   Okay, anyway.

00:17:54   I will get you for this.

00:17:57   No, no you won't.

00:17:58   So there's a difference between Amazon's approach

00:18:02   and Apple's approach.

00:18:04   They're different.

00:18:04   You could argue that Apple's is more considered maybe.

00:18:08   They have, in theory, they have strict security requirements.

00:18:11   The reason why you have fewer HomeKit devices

00:18:14   than Alexa connected devices is that based on what we know,

00:18:19   based on the rumors we heard,

00:18:21   based on some reports from publications in the past,

00:18:25   Apple is very slow to approve new HomeKit devices.

00:18:29   You gotta have a special chip inside.

00:18:31   It's not like you can make a security camera

00:18:33   with some web service and there you go.

00:18:35   You just sign up for the Amazon web services

00:18:37   you can roll out the election integration. It doesn't work that way with HomeKit.

00:18:40   But also the counter counter argument is Amazon started slow, now is taking the Netflix approach,

00:18:50   which is you have a basic product that works well, is fast and now is spreading. Starting with the US,

00:18:58   the UK, Germany, now it's coming out on a bunch of different devices and they have what Apple

00:19:04   doesn't have with Serum HomeKit which is Momentum and Amazon is able now to

00:19:09   scale the product from the US to Europe to hundreds of devices that you know

00:19:17   they're not available in HomeKit. You don't have HomeKit fridges, you don't

00:19:21   have you know HomeKit cars of course. It's two very different strategies and I

00:19:30   I tend to sit somewhere in the middle. I love my Echo.

00:19:35   I also realize that Siri and HomeKit are available to more people around the world.

00:19:42   But also on the other hand, I have a better experience with Alexa and the Echo than I have with Siri.

00:19:50   I know that it's not as flexible, but every time I ask a question to my Echo, it responds.

00:19:58   Whereas I don't have the same experience with, you know, with Siri and other HomeKit devices.

00:20:04   And furthermore, the Echo is able to talk to more services than Siri is.

00:20:09   I mean, already, you know, I'm able to do way more by having queries of my Echo and asking it to do things for me than Siri can.

00:20:17   Siri cannot arm my Canary via IFTTT, you know?

00:20:24   I mean that's definitely like the fundamental difference between the two companies approaches

00:20:28   and you know the Verge had this article pitching Electa versus the HomeKit which I think is

00:20:33   pretty unfair not only like you said Electa does a lot more than that but the they're

00:20:39   just different things and one reason I think that Amazon has seen success is that they

00:20:45   do open up what they call skills to anybody so like you know Federico could write a skill

00:20:51   you know you could say, "Oh I did." Yeah, Vittucci teaching me Italian. Like,

00:20:58   anybody can do almost anything with it. Now contrast that with Apple, with

00:21:02   HomeKit, and with Siri. SiriKit is only open to select types of applications and

00:21:07   you have to to fit within Apple's template of how you use it. And HomeKit

00:21:12   is only available to hardware manufacturers that go through from what

00:21:17   seems to be from the outside an

00:21:19   extremely difficult process to get

00:21:21   approved. Now there's pros and cons to

00:21:24   both, right? Amazon has wide-reaching

00:21:27   skills and Apple's is more narrow. Now you

00:21:32   may say that Apple's may be higher

00:21:33   quality or more secure because they're

00:21:35   controlling everything. It's not really

00:21:37   the debate for today. They're just

00:21:38   different and I think that comparing

00:21:42   Amazon and Apple in these arenas is just

00:21:45   tricky. They're not, it's not apples to

00:21:47   oranges it's not really the same thing but you know the time is coming where

00:21:54   Apple is going to have to address this I think this is where we get into the Phil

00:21:57   Schiller interview which was really about the iPhone anniversary but this

00:22:00   came up that you know he says you know Apple has a strong platform in Siri and

00:22:06   in the iPhone and Amazon doesn't well all that takes is Amazon having an

00:22:14   to Apple potentially for iOS.

00:22:16   There's already a third party one

00:22:17   I think all three of us use.

00:22:18   There are ways that Amazon can get more places

00:22:21   and we're seeing that at CES.

00:22:23   And yes, some of that stuff's gonna be vaporware

00:22:25   because it's CES.

00:22:27   Stop emailing us now, we know that happens.

00:22:30   I think a lot of people write off CES completely for that.

00:22:33   I think that's the wrong approach.

00:22:34   But you cannot deny that Amazon is out there in more places,

00:22:38   out there doing more things than Apple.

00:22:39   And is Apple gonna catch up?

00:22:41   or is Apple going to sit this round out?

00:22:44   I think the three of us agree that Apple

00:22:48   needs to make a move here.

00:22:49   - I agree with the CES argument to a point,

00:22:53   but when Ford are integrating Amazon's assistant product

00:22:56   into their cars, that's not-- - It's a real thing.

00:22:59   - That's not vaporware, right?

00:23:01   Like maybe somebody who made something

00:23:03   that looks like the Echo, but is a wall lamp

00:23:08   and it's a company you've never heard of before,

00:23:10   then yeah, I mean I can get what you're saying,

00:23:12   but for deciding that they're gonna integrate this

00:23:15   instead of maybe using some of their sync features

00:23:17   that they've been creating over the last 10 years,

00:23:20   that's a pretty big deal.

00:23:22   - With Microsoft, by the way.

00:23:24   Yeah, the F-150 is not vaporware.

00:23:26   These are real things.

00:23:28   And so that's one reason I find the Phil Schiller quote

00:23:31   a little bit troubling.

00:23:33   He says that Siri is great because as the assistant with you

00:23:37   We've heard that line from people for a while now.

00:23:41   Schiller's not the first one to say it.

00:23:43   And that is true, there is value in that.

00:23:47   And it is true that for the most part,

00:23:50   unless I go out and buy a new pickup truck,

00:23:52   I'm from Tennessee, it could happen,

00:23:53   but unless I go buy a new Ford

00:23:55   or buy a smartwatch with this in it,

00:23:57   then my access to the Amazon ecosystem

00:24:01   is limited to my office and to my kitchen

00:24:03   where I have the Echo.

00:24:04   So he's right about that.

00:24:06   And I think he's right that there are certain circumstances

00:24:09   where you really wanna have a display.

00:24:11   And he really hammers on this in this back channel interview

00:24:14   that Siri is useful because it can surface stuff

00:24:18   on a display, and that's, again, that's not wrong,

00:24:20   that's not incorrect, but I do think it's incomplete.

00:24:24   That a lot of stuff, like the reason

00:24:27   that Amazon has seen success is there are times

00:24:30   where you don't care about a screen.

00:24:32   And that I think why these things end up in kitchens

00:24:35   is because people have, you know,

00:24:36   they're elbow deep in making muffins

00:24:38   and they need to shout a question to a cylinder

00:24:40   and the cylinder can answer them.

00:24:41   And it gets it right, like 100% of the time.

00:24:44   They are different markets to a degree.

00:24:47   There's overlap, but they are slightly different markets.

00:24:49   And there are rumors that a future Echo will have a display.

00:24:54   I'm telling you, if they do that,

00:24:55   like I'm gonna upgrade the one in my kitchen

00:24:56   'cause there are times where I want that.

00:24:58   And he's right that Siri has access

00:25:00   to a bunch of your content,

00:25:01   a bunch of information that Amazon doesn't.

00:25:04   Amazon doesn't have my photo library.

00:25:06   They don't have my calendars and contacts like Siri does.

00:25:10   But that hasn't stopped me

00:25:13   from using Amazon's product heavily.

00:25:17   So I think he's sort of like,

00:25:20   I think his argument's a little off base

00:25:22   and it's one of those things we were talking yesterday.

00:25:25   I don't know if Schiller blasting the Echo

00:25:28   is like Apple being coy,

00:25:29   like Steve Jobs saying no one wants to watch a video

00:25:31   on an iPod and then three months later

00:25:33   announces the video iPod.

00:25:35   Or if it's they really don't get it

00:25:38   and they really think they are making the right decision.

00:25:42   And I can't tell which it is.

00:25:44   I hope that they're just being coy

00:25:45   'cause I think they should be in this space.

00:25:47   But it is a little concerning that, you know,

00:25:49   maybe Schiller's writing this off and they don't need to be.

00:25:52   - Yeah, this lends into like another kind of concern

00:25:55   that I have right now, which is like,

00:25:58   The two kind of agreed upon strands of technology that the majority of the large companies are going down

00:26:05   Are you have a voice assistant?

00:26:07   Technology like voice assistant

00:26:09   machines, you know like these

00:26:12   dedicated

00:26:13   boxes

00:26:14   Or and VR and right now Apple seems to be downplaying

00:26:19   Both of these right that they say that the canisters are not in not what we want

00:26:25   What we want is something that is in our pockets all the time, which may be, you know, to add a straddle to that

00:26:32   Which is yes, I understand could be very good. But my argument is where do people actually use these things? I

00:26:37   Don't think people use them on the subway

00:26:40   So I don't know how necessary is I think having something that has a ton of microphones in it because it's a big tube

00:26:49   It's maybe better depending on where it wants to be used

00:26:53   like the places I want to use this stuff is in my home and I can like cover my entire home with one

00:26:59   of the big cylinders and one of the little ones right no matter what it is and I'm going to cover

00:27:03   the majority of my house as long as I speak loudly enough and then the other is virtual reality which

00:27:08   most likely is just going to have effects in gaming but we don't know

00:27:13   and these seem to be like two of the biggest things that are happening right now and

00:27:18   Apple is downplaying both of them and doesn't appear to have anything in those areas and

00:27:22   And this is either a good thing, right?

00:27:25   That they're focusing on something

00:27:26   which is gonna end up being more important,

00:27:27   like the way that we know Apple to be, right?

00:27:30   Like, oh, that they're working on AR

00:27:32   and we don't know it yet

00:27:33   because we haven't seen Apple's product.

00:27:35   But when we do, we realize that everything else is silly

00:27:38   or they're missing and that they end up

00:27:42   in a Microsoft situation or a Facebook situation

00:27:46   where they miss the boat on something

00:27:48   and that it ends up hurting them in the long run.

00:27:51   I actually don't know what one it is,

00:27:54   but I feel like that I'm willing to ask the question

00:27:58   more than in previous times.

00:28:01   - And it is important to remember that,

00:28:05   like Apple, if you look at the iPod

00:28:08   and the iPhone in particular,

00:28:10   and the Apple Watch to a lesser degree,

00:28:12   Apple is okay sitting on the sidelines

00:28:16   watching a market figure itself out,

00:28:19   and then they come in.

00:28:19   So they weren't the first music player,

00:28:21   they weren't the first smartphone,

00:28:22   they weren't the first smartwatch wearable thing.

00:28:26   And they come in and they usually do it better,

00:28:30   it's usually more expensive,

00:28:31   but they end up dominating in one way or another.

00:28:34   So this conversation we are having,

00:28:37   I agree with you, it's worth having.

00:28:40   I think it's particularly interesting this time

00:28:41   because voice cylinders have taken off super quickly,

00:28:46   like more quickly than these other

00:28:47   product categories did, I think.

00:28:49   And is this another case of Apple letting the market

00:28:53   figure itself out?

00:28:54   Or maybe they were caught flat-footed,

00:28:55   they weren't working on this at all,

00:28:56   and then all of a sudden Amazon comes out with this product

00:28:59   that a lot of people, at least nerds, seem to really like,

00:29:01   and now they gotta deal with it?

00:29:04   I don't know what's going on internally, of course,

00:29:06   but there is that conversation to be had

00:29:07   that Apple does this.

00:29:09   They wait for things to settle out enough

00:29:13   where they can come in and dominate.

00:29:17   So maybe that's happening now,

00:29:18   Maybe that's happening with these other things,

00:29:20   but maybe it's not.

00:29:21   And until they ship something, we don't know,

00:29:24   so we have to have this conversation.

00:29:25   But it is interesting, and that's like,

00:29:28   I said this yesterday on a show,

00:29:30   that that's when I will worry about Apple

00:29:33   when they do miss something big like mobile,

00:29:38   like Microsoft missed mobile.

00:29:39   I don't think they've missed anything big yet,

00:29:42   but there's always that concern, right,

00:29:43   that they do miss this, or they do miss if VR takes off.

00:29:46   Robert Scoble yesterday said that Apple is going to ship AR glasses this year.

00:29:50   Who knows what's happening, but that like wait-and-see approach like works to a

00:29:55   degree, but if things get too far out of hand and Apple's not there then that's

00:30:00   when I really start to worry. I think especially about assistants. We cannot

00:30:05   agree that that it's convenient to have one on a phone and it's convenient to

00:30:09   have one with the display, but all these discussions they all come

00:30:15   down for me at least to a simple question. Do you believe it's convenient

00:30:20   also to have an assistant in your home that is separate from the phone? So to

00:30:27   have an assistant that can hear you from a distance, that can talk more

00:30:32   loudly and that doesn't need a display. Because to say "well yeah but Siri has

00:30:39   the display" that's missing the point. We cannot agree that it's convenient to

00:30:42   have an assistant on your main device but is it also useful to have a separate

00:30:47   voice that can hear you inside your home no matter where you are and I'm gonna

00:30:56   follow up to the question with is it also useful to have an assistant that

00:31:02   can talk to a bunch of different services a bunch of different products

00:31:06   and apps instead of limited domains because we shouldn't I think a lot of

00:31:13   people they're trying to downplay the echo and Amazon I'm not saying that it's

00:31:19   a huge threat to Apple right now because a lot of people reply with some kind of

00:31:23   straw man to this problem it's not like Amazon is replacing Apple or that the

00:31:30   echo is winning. In the grand scheme of things they probably haven't solved that many either.

00:31:35   - Exactly, it's just a, you know, if you're a product person,

00:31:38   I think people inside Apple are having these discussions.

00:31:41   - Yeah.

00:31:42   - So we can all agree that Siri on the iPhone is awesome,

00:31:46   is convenient, works with a bunch of different languages,

00:31:49   and it's got an interface,

00:31:50   and arguably we can say it is getting better.

00:31:52   But the flip side is, when you're inside your home

00:31:56   and you're free to talk,

00:31:58   you don't have people staring at you

00:32:00   because you're talking to an assistant,

00:32:02   Is it a good idea to have an assistant that can talk more loudly, that is a dedicated device, that it's only job, it's to be a voice only, not a voice first, voice only product?

00:32:15   And I think the answer is yes, because as we're seeing, it's not like it's just, you know, a bunch of podcasters are falling in love with this new product.

00:32:26   It's gaining mindshare.

00:32:29   It's been on TV shows.

00:32:30   It's been on the news.

00:32:31   It's a good idea.

00:32:32   And I think Apple is thinking about this and I think it's you know, it would be silly to say no

00:32:39   No, Apple is never gonna do that because we have Siri because you have a display. Yes, we have a display

00:32:43   Which is awesome

00:32:44   But is it also useful to have a speaker to have an assistant that is only a voice that replies to you

00:32:51   And I think we're gonna see Siri in this form eventually because it is a good idea

00:32:55   funnily enough

00:32:56   One of my favorite things about the echo is one of the things that we all laughed at when we first saw it

00:33:02   That it is in a fixed place in my home because I have a location to direct my query to

00:33:09   which if I'm using my iPhone for this

00:33:13   it's not necessarily where I

00:33:17   Think it is at all times

00:33:20   Right like it moves and I understand that it's good that you might have it on your body

00:33:24   But there's something about it

00:33:25   You know my echo being in a place in the kitchen

00:33:28   That like if I'm watching TV, I can turn around and talk to it

00:33:33   like there is just something that makes sense to me and that it is in a fixed place in which I direct my

00:33:38   Question towards and I actually quite like that and it's funny. You know, this is this is a thing that we're all

00:33:44   We're all guilty of judging things before we try them and I think the echo was definitely one of those

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00:36:27   Alright so Steven you got your hands on one of these little Apple Watch stands right?

00:36:31   Yeah so the Elago W3 it is a silicone Apple Watch stand that looks like a tiny baby Macintosh

00:36:41   And so, of course I bought it.

00:36:44   It was like 15 bucks on Amazon or something.

00:36:47   I showed up this weekend.

00:36:48   I put a little review video together over the weekend.

00:36:51   And I'm, I have used since, I guess since nightstand mode,

00:36:56   which is what, watch OS 2,

00:36:58   I have used a stand for my watch at night

00:37:02   on my bedside table.

00:37:04   So it puts it up and you know,

00:37:05   it looks like a little alarm clock.

00:37:07   If you bump the table or really just even touch it almost,

00:37:11   the watch will wake up and give you the time in a very low light situations.

00:37:16   There's not like blinding which is really nice.

00:37:19   You can set it to do the alarm with the buttons.

00:37:20   I don't ever do that.

00:37:21   But I've and I've used one from Studio Neat the material dock.

00:37:25   That's what I have on my nightstand table.

00:37:27   Now it has a phone and a watch stand kind of in one

00:37:30   and I'm going to continue to use that.

00:37:31   I really like that dock,

00:37:33   but this one was just too adorable to pass up spending some time with.

00:37:38   So you drop the watch into it,

00:37:41   it's cut out where the face of the watch

00:37:43   is the face of the Macintosh, and it's just a lot of fun.

00:37:47   So if you are looking for an Apple Watch saying

00:37:49   I don't want to spend a bunch of money

00:37:50   and want something adorable,

00:37:52   I would point you to this thing.

00:37:55   - Yeah, I use the Studio Neat Material Dock.

00:37:58   I have one of the ones for the phone and the watch,

00:38:03   and then I have one for just the phone

00:38:04   that I have on my desk, and I love it.

00:38:08   I know that obviously Studio Neat are friends of the show, but this is a product that I

00:38:13   was really looking for and I'm a big fan of it.

00:38:15   I think the best thing about it is that it's not like adhesive, but there's this rubber

00:38:22   stuff that they put on the bottom and it keeps it completely stuck to the desk.

00:38:28   Which is fantastic.

00:38:31   You can pick up your iPhone and just take it straight out and you can just pick it up

00:38:35   put it down and then the you know it's really nice to have the watch there and

00:38:39   then the watches in nightstand mode it's I love that product.

00:38:41   Yeah I use the Barkin Valet iPhone and watch. Of course you do you so fancy.

00:38:49   Yeah I like modern style docks and you know these kind of accessories.

00:38:54   That doesn't use nightstand mode does it? Because it holds the watch sort of vertically?

00:38:58   No I don't use nightstand mode because I wear the watch at night. So it's because of

00:39:03   this that I decided to put this dock not in my bedroom on my nightstand but on in

00:39:08   the kitchen / living room where both Silvia and I if we need to we can place

00:39:13   our iPhones and watches when we need a quick charge so yeah yeah it looks nice

00:39:19   it's on an IKEA piece of furniture which is a you know nice contrast between the

00:39:23   black IKEA cabinet and the silver Apple style dock it's very nice fashionable

00:39:29   - I know, wow.

00:39:31   - Yeah, I like that there are a lot of options

00:39:33   for this thing, that you can really pick something

00:39:36   that looks the way you want it to look.

00:39:39   It was nice, I mean, nightstand mode is something that,

00:39:43   it's, I mean, we have a clock in our room, right?

00:39:47   Like, the watch is next to my side of the bed,

00:39:49   my wife can't see it, so it's nice for me,

00:39:52   but it's something that I think some people

00:39:55   get more use out of than others,

00:39:56   but it's one of those things that Apple announces,

00:39:58   Like, this is super clever.

00:40:01   Like, it's one of the things that the watch

00:40:03   kind of should do.

00:40:04   It should be useful as a time piece at night, so.

00:40:06   Good job.

00:40:08   The big news this week though, shockingly guys,

00:40:12   was not Apple Watch stands.

00:40:13   I know we could talk about it all day,

00:40:15   but yesterday marked the 10 year anniversary

00:40:18   of the keynote in which Steve Jobs announced the iPhone.

00:40:23   I think the three of us agree

00:40:24   that it was his finest performance,

00:40:27   perhaps the best product introduction,

00:40:29   at least of our lifetimes, that I can think of.

00:40:31   - No, no, perhaps, no, perhaps.

00:40:33   Like, it is the single greatest product introduction.

00:40:36   - And so we have a bunch of links

00:40:40   in the show notes this week.

00:40:41   Federico and I both wrote some stuff about it,

00:40:44   put some stuff together.

00:40:45   We have a link to the video.

00:40:47   If you have an hour, just go watch the keynote again.

00:40:50   It's outstanding.

00:40:52   If you have eight hours,

00:40:54   you can listen to episode 30 of The Prompt,

00:40:56   is the show that preceded this one.

00:40:58   - Doesn't last seven hours, that episode, I'm sure.

00:41:02   - I listened to it this week,

00:41:03   it's like two and a half hours long.

00:41:06   Well, the two of you and then a very sick version of me

00:41:10   walk through the keynote and it totally holds up.

00:41:14   I think the single proudest I've ever been

00:41:19   of a single podcast episode is this episode.

00:41:23   And then we also have the Wayback Machine link

00:41:27   for the original iPhone website,

00:41:29   which I had totally forgotten how it's all black

00:41:31   and really crazy looking.

00:41:33   But the original specs and Apple trying

00:41:35   to make the phone look small.

00:41:37   Some funny stuff there with age.

00:41:39   Age makes everything funny.

00:41:41   So go check all that out if you haven't read or seen

00:41:44   or listened to much about the iPhone anniversary.

00:41:47   There's lots of good content out there.

00:41:49   But I wanted to see what y'all's first memories

00:41:53   of the iPhone, what were your first reactions?

00:41:57   What were your first thoughts?

00:41:59   Federico, what about you?

00:42:01   - This is gonna be bad for my reputation.

00:42:06   I think I talked about this before, but there we go again.

00:42:09   I didn't watch the original iPhone presentation at the time.

00:42:13   I had no idea what was going on.

00:42:16   I'm pretty sure I didn't even know what Apple was.

00:42:19   I mean, I knew what Apple was,

00:42:20   but from a heard from a friend kind of perspective.

00:42:25   I knew that the Macintosh was a different type of computer,

00:42:29   but I was not a tech nerd.

00:42:30   I was in high school.

00:42:31   I only cared about video games, basically, and music.

00:42:35   So I didn't own the original iPhone,

00:42:39   but that changed quickly after high school.

00:42:43   I tried my, I had a very short

00:42:47   and unsuccessful university experience.

00:42:50   I dropped out, I started my first job at an eBay reseller shop, and my first boss, my

00:42:58   first and only boss actually, he was into the idea of buying an iPhone from the United

00:43:05   States.

00:43:06   So at the time, the first iPhone never actually launched in Italy, and that didn't stop a

00:43:12   bunch of enterprising Italians from buying an iPhone on eBay and using one of the first

00:43:18   jailbreaks/unlock. I think the unlock system was made by a guy named Zibri, and the jailbreak was called the Z-Phone type of method,

00:43:31   which basically allowed you to unlock the carrier of the iPhone and use it on different international carriers, besides AT&T in the United States.

00:43:42   So I remember my boss, he found this guy on eBay, and he bought two iPhones for some reason.

00:43:49   It was the kind of lavish person who liked to spend money.

00:43:52   So he bought two iPhones, and I remember these two boxes coming into the store. I was working.

00:43:58   These two boxes coming to the store, and we opened the iPhones. I think there were two 8 gigabyte models.

00:44:05   Yeah, and

00:44:07   inside the boxes were the AT&T SIMs

00:44:11   that the iPhone came with. So I was very impressed by the, you know, dedication of this eBay seller.

00:44:17   So my boss uses this iPhone for a while and of course

00:44:22   I was in charge of looking up all of the jailbreak techniques because he was also a lazy person.

00:44:26   He only liked to spend money. So I

00:44:29   did the research about the jailbreak. So I, you know,

00:44:34   did the unlock

00:44:37   thing on his phone and that's when I

00:44:40   first tried installer. So installer was this, I remember it was like the precursor of Cydia

00:44:47   you know for the jailbreak. It was like an alternative app store before the App Store that allowed you to install

00:44:53   custom software on the iPhone

00:44:56   you know the first third-party apps on the first third-party tweaks, and it had I remember it had a blue icon

00:45:03   so a couple of months passed it's now

00:45:07   well into

00:45:10   2008 and

00:45:12   The thing about my boss was a weird guy

00:45:15   He was also very easily distracted

00:45:18   So he used the iPhone for a few months and then he I think he fell in love with some kind of different smartphone

00:45:25   So it's like yeah, I don't care about the iPhone anymore

00:45:27   At that point I had bought an iPod touch because I was really into this idea of you know

00:45:35   iPhone OS and what Apple was doing and so my boss was not using his original iPhone anymore

00:45:41   I was like, hey, what if you what if you sell your iPhone to me?

00:45:45   I was like sure give me like a couple of hundred euros and you can have it

00:45:49   So I bought an iPhone from my boss and I just fell in love with it

00:45:55   Until I bought the 3GS

00:45:58   in

00:46:00   2009

00:46:02   So I used my my my boss's original iPhone

00:46:06   When the 3G actually came out and didn't buy the iPhone 3G. I used the original iPhone until 3GS in

00:46:13   They came out in I think in Italy in July 2009 back when iPhones used to launch in the summer

00:46:19   so I used my original iPhone for about a year I would say and

00:46:23   You know, it was the beginning of

00:46:26   You know my career eventually I was fired. I started my stories and I started writing about iPhone apps and

00:46:31   I actually regret not being into Apple news, not following the original presentation of Steve Jobs back then.

00:46:41   I watched it, of course, later.

00:46:45   But yeah, it was a strange type of getting into the Apple scene, getting into this whole iPhone thing.

00:46:54   If anything, I mean, I'm thankful to my boss for being that kind of person who buys an iPhone from

00:47:01   an American on eBay, even if he cannot use it and tells me that I should do the research to how to

00:47:07   do the unlock. I'm thankful for that because in his own weird way, he got me into this whole thing.

00:47:15   And now I'm talking to you guys. So there we go. Yeah.

00:47:18   I was already deep within at this point. Like, I had iPods. I watched the presentation on my iMac.

00:47:24   and I don't really remember much of watching the presentation. I believe I have a memory

00:47:31   of watching the presentation but it's one of those memories in which I can see myself

00:47:35   which means it's probably not true. What I do remember though is like on that evening

00:47:42   showing family members different parts of it like the the rubber band scrolling and

00:47:47   stuff and being like "look at this!" like I couldn't help but show people because I

00:47:52   I was so excited about it. And then the other thing that I have a memory of is actually

00:47:57   buying my iPhone, which for us in the UK came much later. We didn't get ours in June. I

00:48:06   think it was more towards the end of that year of 2007. And I remember like having my

00:48:14   brother, he left after school and he stood in line for me because I was working at the

00:48:20   time and I went and kind of met him. We were third in line and then the checkout system

00:48:25   at the car phone warehouse is what the store is called, it's a chain of cell phone stores

00:48:30   here called the car phone warehouse. They started when phones were in cars. Their checkout

00:48:36   system completely failed when the iPhone went on sale because it was like complete overload

00:48:42   so we had to pay in cash and because we paid in cash that was why I didn't buy the little

00:48:48   Apple Bluetooth headset thing.

00:48:49   I was just gonna get that,

00:48:50   'cause I was just so excited about everything.

00:48:52   I wanted all of it, and I couldn't get out enough cash

00:48:54   to buy both things, so luckily I dodged that bullet.

00:48:58   - Yeah, it wasn't a great product.

00:49:01   - So, yeah, it's like the father of the AirPods, right?

00:49:04   - It is, it's a great, great grandfather.

00:49:07   So I did not watch the keynote the day of.

00:49:11   Of course, I wasn't a livestream unit

00:49:12   following along with blogs.

00:49:13   I was actually traveling, visiting family.

00:49:16   I did work as an Apple retail employee at the time.

00:49:19   So I remember getting back to my cell phone service and a bunch of people texting me going

00:49:26   crazy that Apple had done this insane thing.

00:49:30   I went that evening to dial up my aunt's house looking at those original iPhone web pages

00:49:35   like trying to squeeze every drop of information out of them.

00:49:39   Trying to get my head around it.

00:49:41   I'm not quite sure when I actually watched the keynote video.

00:49:44   Apple was publishing them at that point, I think in iTunes,

00:49:47   but it took a little while to get them.

00:49:48   It wasn't like it is now.

00:49:50   And I just remember being just really, really blown away.

00:49:54   I ended up buying one about three, three or four weeks

00:49:58   after they went on sale.

00:50:00   So like if you've been full time at the Apple store

00:50:03   for a set amount of time, you got a free one

00:50:04   and I missed that cut off by like a week and a half

00:50:08   or like two weeks.

00:50:10   - Oh no.

00:50:11   - And I begged my assistant manager,

00:50:13   who was a friend of mine,

00:50:14   and stole a friend of mine, I was like,

00:50:15   "Please, you gotta let me in on this,"

00:50:17   and he couldn't do it.

00:50:18   And so what he did do is they were coming in very slowly

00:50:21   and he placed that one aside for me,

00:50:23   which he probably wasn't supposed to do.

00:50:26   And then so I was able to purchase one.

00:50:29   And so I was very early.

00:50:30   I've owned every one of them since,

00:50:33   except the 5C and the 5S.

00:50:35   I did switch to Android for a little while in 2011,

00:50:37   but I switched back.

00:50:39   - Man, I forgot that.

00:50:40   You were a Droid person.

00:50:41   I carried a Palm Pre Plus for like three or four months,

00:50:45   and then a Droid for like a year, and then came back.

00:50:49   So it's always been, it's hard to believe

00:50:54   it's been 10 years.

00:50:55   It's really hard to overstate the impact that it's had.

00:51:00   Not only on Apple, I mean obviously Apple,

00:51:02   it's been huge, their stock is way up.

00:51:04   In that prompt 30, I shared how much

00:51:08   I sold my employee stock for,

00:51:10   and if I'd held onto it, I would've made a lot more money.

00:51:13   But I wouldn't own it now anyway,

00:51:15   since I cover it for a living,

00:51:17   but it was kind of funny to hear that.

00:51:19   - Now you gotta own it, man.

00:51:20   Boost that price up, right?

00:51:22   - That's right, yeah, the whole thing is a scam.

00:51:24   But the three of us really were like

00:51:28   the perfect age for this.

00:51:30   Like we can remember a life before it.

00:51:32   - Oh yeah.

00:51:33   - I was 20 at this announcement, 21 when it came out,

00:51:38   And it is really similar to people

00:51:41   whose parents bought them an Apple II

00:51:44   when they were in middle school,

00:51:46   or even elementary school, and they learned to program

00:51:47   in basic on an Apple II, right?

00:51:49   Or they got a Commodore, or they got a PC.

00:51:53   Those very early computers, people who are now

00:51:57   in their 40s or even early 50s who were kids

00:52:01   during the personal PC revolution,

00:52:03   we are that age for the smartphone.

00:52:06   And I wrote a little bit about this yesterday,

00:52:09   I think all three of us had, like,

00:52:11   we owe so much, not only to the iPhone,

00:52:14   but to what it created, right?

00:52:17   To what it made possible.

00:52:20   So things like podcasting, they existed

00:52:23   before Apple had put it into iTunes and the iPod in 2005,

00:52:27   but it wasn't until the iPhone and the App Store

00:52:30   that podcasting, at least tech podcasting,

00:52:33   really was accessible to a lot more people.

00:52:35   And I'd forgotten this, actually found the article.

00:52:38   Remember when Apple rejected the podcast client,

00:52:42   the person who wrote it because it rotated iTunes?

00:52:44   Yeah, that was super fun.

00:52:46   Obviously very different today.

00:52:47   Now the iPhone is a home to a rich ecosystem

00:52:50   of podcast clients.

00:52:52   And if you look at relay stats,

00:52:54   I mean the iPhone just dominates

00:52:55   the way people listen to our shows.

00:52:57   And things like social media, right?

00:53:00   Things like Twitter, like the three of us met

00:53:03   more or less on Twitter.

00:53:05   - That's 100% how it happened.

00:53:07   - Yeah.

00:53:08   - Yeah, like my pitch to Federico to join me and you

00:53:13   was a direct message on Twitter.

00:53:14   - Yes, yes it was.

00:53:17   - And you know, the people that we work with

00:53:20   and like the blogs that Federico and I write,

00:53:22   like those are all possible because of the web

00:53:25   being in our pocket all the time.

00:53:27   Like I don't know about Mac stories, but on 512,

00:53:28   the majority of my traffic is mobile now.

00:53:30   Like that crossed a couple of years ago.

00:53:33   And that's a real thing.

00:53:35   And you have to think about mobile first design

00:53:37   and mobile first content.

00:53:38   All that stuff wouldn't be here

00:53:41   if the iPhone hadn't been a success.

00:53:44   And I was just thinking through what line of work,

00:53:47   what part of the economy, what part of the world

00:53:50   hasn't been touched by the smartphone.

00:53:52   And it's really hard to come up with an example.

00:53:55   It's just everywhere.

00:53:56   - I don't know if it's the same for you guys,

00:53:58   but I was thinking about this this week especially.

00:54:02   I remember life before the smartphone, before the internet everywhere.

00:54:07   But I also don't really remember it.

00:54:13   Like, it almost doesn't make any sense.

00:54:15   That there was a time where you couldn't look up maps on your phone or talk to anyone for free.

00:54:23   Like, these things, they were started, kickstarted by the iPhone and by the App Store.

00:54:30   But I don't know, maybe it's the fact that we're getting older, could be, and maybe it's the fact that it's been 10 years.

00:54:38   But I struggle to remember how it used to be.

00:54:43   I remember when my parents and I went on road trips, we had to actually take out fold-out maps with us.

00:54:51   And now you just walk out and you fire up Google Maps or Apple Maps on your phone and you can get to anywhere.

00:54:58   So it is difficult for me to remember how it used to be because it's been such a

00:55:02   fundamental change to society, to the way that we do everything.

00:55:07   I struggle to remember how it used to be. I know I used to have other phones.

00:55:11   I know it used to be different. It just doesn't make sense when I think about it.

00:55:16   Yeah, I agree. It's like I know that I lived that life.

00:55:19   Yes. Right? Like I know I did because I was 18 years old.

00:55:23   Right? So like I have memories of my life, many memories where I didn't have a

00:55:27   smartphone, but I now think of it in like a, how, how was that true?

00:55:34   Exactly.

00:55:35   How was it possible?

00:55:36   My first trip that I took abroad on my own, like it was my girlfriend at the time.

00:55:44   The iPhone 3G came out the day before.

00:55:51   It's like every trip I have ever taken where I am in control of where I'm going

00:55:57   has been powered by GPS in my smartphone.

00:56:00   Yeah.

00:56:02   I never took a trip before that.

00:56:03   And like, and I can't imagine doing that.

00:56:07   Cause it's like, for me, it's like knowing where I am on a map is how I travel.

00:56:12   And without that, it's like, I mean, I can read a map, but I'm way less confident

00:56:18   about what I'm doing and where I'm going.

00:56:20   Like with my iPhone, I'm able to walk somewhere,

00:56:24   go somewhere without like putting constant focus to the map.

00:56:28   And that is like such a powerful thing.

00:56:31   And it's one of the myriad of things

00:56:36   in ways in which the iPhone has touched and changed my life.

00:56:39   - Yeah, it really is such a change,

00:56:44   like so fundamentally different before and after.

00:56:47   And you know, people had taste of it before, right?

00:56:49   Like if you were cool like me in college

00:56:52   and carried a Newton so you could do your email in class.

00:56:55   Those of us who were really ahead of the curve

00:56:58   had a little bit of it.

00:57:00   But for like, what the iPhone really has done

00:57:04   is that it has given, like what Apple calls

00:57:07   in that original webpage, high technology

00:57:10   to like to so many people.

00:57:12   And yes, it should be more affordable

00:57:14   and yes, there's still parts of the world

00:57:16   where it's not made an impact

00:57:17   the way it has in other places.

00:57:19   But it has taken technology and put it in the hands

00:57:23   of more people than ever.

00:57:24   I mean, how many people just have a smartphone

00:57:27   as their only computer?

00:57:28   And that the only way to the internet they have

00:57:31   is through an iPhone or through some other smartphone.

00:57:34   That is a serious change,

00:57:38   like economic, social change in the world.

00:57:43   And in 2007, it was just this clever, you know,

00:57:47   phone that you could prank call Starbucks on if you were Steve Jobs.

00:57:51   But I think even then, if you read interviews with Apple at the time or some videos of Steve

00:57:57   Jobs making the rounds, I think they knew it was a big deal, but I think it was impossible

00:58:02   to really tell.

00:58:03   I certainly didn't foresee it coming.

00:58:06   I don't really think anyone really did understand just what it could do in a really short period

00:58:13   of time.

00:58:14   I think by the time we were like the iPhone 4 or 4s like it was it was turning the corner from

00:58:20   something that like nerdy people had to

00:58:23   like

00:58:25   Regular everyday people like people who have no idea what relay FM is like it's hard to believe they're out there

00:58:31   But they are are there those people do they even exist?

00:58:33   It's it's hard to say but you know, you know what I'm saying? Like it made the turn and

00:58:37   And now it is making a turn

00:58:40   Into countries and into markets and into parts of the world

00:58:44   that have never had technology before.

00:58:46   You know, we went from, and this is why,

00:58:48   there's all this angst, right?

00:58:49   We went from the PC and the Mac to mobile devices

00:58:53   and there are people on either side of that divide

00:58:55   and there's lots of, you know, lots of angst there.

00:58:58   But it's now moving into parts of the world

00:59:00   where that divide doesn't exist

00:59:02   because the personal PC never,

00:59:04   couldn't make a dent there, right?

00:59:05   Due to infrastructure, due to cost,

00:59:08   but the smartphone can and that is really incredible.

00:59:11   So this is the first of the two birthdays of the iPhone, right?

00:59:16   We'll be talking about this again in like six months or something.

00:59:19   Yeah, June 29th.

00:59:21   Happy birthday iPhone.

00:59:24   Oh man, I feel like I need a hug right now.

00:59:27   Oh, it's okay.

00:59:29   I don't know.

00:59:31   Just having a moment.

00:59:34   Yeah.

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01:02:00   So last week there was a post on Medium about Medium, it's like the most Medium something

01:02:06   could be.

01:02:09   The title is called "Renewing Medium's Focus" and Ev Williams basically outlines that Medium's

01:02:16   business model is not working, they are changing business model, they are moving away from

01:02:21   ads and looking at potentially doing a more direct support model.

01:02:28   But the thing about this post is they kind of say that they want a new business model

01:02:34   without outlining what the business model is.

01:02:37   And they've decided to fire all of their salespeople, scale down the company and then say we're

01:02:45   not sure what we're going to do yet, but trust us, we got this.

01:02:52   This isn't, I think, a very strong showing from Medium.

01:02:57   me of the gif that Steven often shares of the garbage truck on fire just driving. I

01:03:04   don't have a good feeling about this.

01:03:08   Again, media is a company full of people. We feel sorry for the people that lost their

01:03:12   jobs, of course.

01:03:13   Yes, of course we do.

01:03:14   My understanding is, you know, I like seeing this, like, when you see something like this

01:03:19   happen, and then you see tweets from people at Tumblr who are like "Hey, come work for

01:03:22   us!" Although I don't know what Tumblr's standing is right now with, what is it, Al

01:03:26   Altaba we have on the horizon?

01:03:28   Yes.

01:03:29   Altaba everyone.

01:03:30   Altaba.

01:03:31   And we'll find everything we need in it.

01:03:36   Anyway, so one of the things that's really interesting to me about this is Medium's prior

01:03:43   business model was trying to get publishers to come to Medium and publish there.

01:03:49   We spoke about Backchannel earlier in the show.

01:03:52   That is Steven Levy's Medium blog,

01:03:55   which only exists on Medium, right?

01:03:57   Like that is where it is.

01:03:59   And Medium have been trying to convince companies

01:04:01   to cross post and create original content to put there.

01:04:06   And there's even, I wish I could remember where this was,

01:04:10   but I saw a link of somebody, a publisher,

01:04:13   who started their new Medium thing.

01:04:17   - Yeah, on the very day. - Of the day.

01:04:19   (laughing)

01:04:20   - So this is a case of left hand not knowing

01:04:23   what right hand is doing, right?

01:04:24   Because obviously the team who is trying to encourage content

01:04:28   was still encouraging content,

01:04:30   not knowing that they were about to lose their jobs.

01:04:32   - Yes. - That's really,

01:04:34   that's really rough. - Rough, really rough.

01:04:36   So I wanted to talk about this because

01:04:38   there are some threads here which I'm seeing

01:04:41   running through a few different places.

01:04:43   One of them was, like a couple of months ago,

01:04:47   I saw a piece on Daring Fireball,

01:04:49   that was about, it was linked to,

01:04:54   John was linking to something that Andy Bio wrote,

01:04:57   where he's talking about how indie blogging

01:05:00   seems to be changing, like there isn't as much

01:05:03   focus put on it anymore, and that maybe people

01:05:05   are moving more towards social networks

01:05:07   to kind of get their messages across.

01:05:09   But Andy makes the case for independent blogging

01:05:11   and writing, because like nobody can shut him down,

01:05:15   nobody can control what he says, nobody can control

01:05:17   the URLs that he uses, like it's his place

01:05:20   to do whatever he wants in.

01:05:21   And it seems that more people these days

01:05:25   are moving to different channels,

01:05:28   different networks to share their stuff.

01:05:30   So I've been thinking about this

01:05:32   and I have a question for you both.

01:05:34   Is there less independent blogging now

01:05:39   because frankly it's becoming harder and harder

01:05:43   to make money in that world,

01:05:45   you know, with a lot of the tough web ad stuff that exists,

01:05:50   which maybe the two of you can speak to a little bit

01:05:52   if you want, I don't know if you want to.

01:05:54   And is it because it's getting harder

01:05:57   to make a living doing this,

01:05:59   that people are pushing their content towards platforms

01:06:02   like Twitter and Medium and maybe YouTube and podcasts,

01:06:06   because you're able to maybe get your name out there,

01:06:10   you're able to be on social networks,

01:06:12   which are maybe at least likely to get you more fame

01:06:15   or notoriety where it might not be able to secure you

01:06:18   as much money, especially in the case of the social networks?

01:06:21   - It's a very complex question

01:06:23   that requires a very complex answer.

01:06:25   First of all, I believe there's been a shift

01:06:27   from bloggers to vloggers.

01:06:30   So a lot of people are now on YouTube.

01:06:32   A lot of people that 10 years ago

01:06:34   would have probably written something,

01:06:36   now they're shooting a video about it.

01:06:38   The second part of my answer is,

01:06:41   I think social networks and social platforms like Twitter, Facebook and Medium to an extent,

01:06:47   they have been great equalizers.

01:06:50   They have provided millions of people with an easy way to write, to share content, whether

01:06:57   it's a video, a picture or text.

01:07:01   They have succeeded because of the easy way to share or just the easier way to build a

01:07:08   social graph and to find your friends or an audience. But I think there's a... we

01:07:15   gotta differentiate between blogging as a job and blogging as a technology. I

01:07:23   think there's fewer people maybe trying to pursue indie blogging as a job but I

01:07:32   think the technology is of course still around. It hasn't gone anywhere. In fact

01:07:37   We have better tools today than ever.

01:07:39   Whether it's setting up your own server is easy, today is easier today,

01:07:44   WordPress is better than ever, and there's all kinds of other tools you can use for blogging.

01:07:50   I do believe there's...

01:07:54   Part of it is a perception issue, that fewer people are trying to make money by writing online.

01:08:00   But maybe it's also a trend, maybe it's also objectively true,

01:08:04   that fewer people are trying to monetize indie blogging. And I believe part of the problem there is the simple, you know,

01:08:12   simple economics. There's just more supply than demand.

01:08:17   So we see some people shifting to YouTube, other people shifting to other type of online careers.

01:08:25   I still believe

01:08:29   it is necessary if you want to make

01:08:33   writing, so blogging, your job, it is an utmost necessity that you own your stuff,

01:08:42   that you don't cede control of the technology to other people, which is also

01:08:49   the reason why I have been in the news, if you will, lately, because of...

01:08:54   I was wondering if you were going to bring this up.

01:08:56   I have been on the New York Times because of my decision to stop using Google AMP.

01:09:05   Mr. Vitici. I'm sorry we didn't call you Mr. at the beginning.

01:09:08   Yeah, talk to my assistant to schedule our next recording.

01:09:12   This is the reason why I decided to remove Google AMP support for Mac stories.

01:09:18   I didn't like the way that Google was rewriting my links in Google search.

01:09:22   So there's a whole discussion to be made about controlling technology and your stuff and your content, use open formats.

01:09:30   But to answer your question, Myke, I think technologically indie blogging is still around and better than ever.

01:09:39   Economically, there's been a lot of changes that contribute to the different landscape that we have today.

01:09:47   have today. So do you think though that people are moving more towards networks

01:09:52   though, like in general? Yes, because I think we live in a more diversified world

01:09:58   now than 10 years ago. I think it's easier for a kid in China to try to find

01:10:05   an audience on a network that is allowed through the firewall. I think it's easier

01:10:09   for a teenager to post some thoughts on Twitter or Facebook. I think it's easier

01:10:12   for someone to go viral using YouTube and Facebook.

01:10:17   Or taking a screenshot of notes and posting it on Instagram.

01:10:19   Exactly. I think these networks, they remove a lot of barriers

01:10:23   because there is a barrier. There is an audience barrier,

01:10:28   there is a technological barrier to setting up a blog, setting up your own domain,

01:10:32   which is why I believe we got to differentiate between doing this just to share

01:10:37   and doing this to make a living.

01:10:40   The technology is the same, the goal and the time that you gotta sink into this thing is profoundly different.

01:10:48   Yeah, you know, I've been blogging at 512 pixels for over 8 years now.

01:10:55   It's a really long time.

01:10:58   And so I've seen some of this take place over the arc of my own blogging career, if you want to call it that.

01:11:09   where I tried really hard, like in like 2010 and 2011,

01:11:13   I really put my head down and like tried to see

01:11:16   if I could make five-fold pixels into a job.

01:11:18   And the answer then was no, that I couldn't do it.

01:11:23   And honestly, the answer today still is no,

01:11:26   that five-fold pixels, it makes money.

01:11:29   Some months it makes better money than others.

01:11:32   But it's not a job.

01:11:35   Relay FM is my job.

01:11:36   Relay FM is what pays my mortgage

01:11:39   and keeps food on my table and keeps my kids in jackets.

01:11:42   - How many jackets, Tony?

01:11:44   - They grow so fast.

01:11:46   - Okay.

01:11:46   - I feel like there's a bigger discussion

01:11:48   to be had about jackets.

01:11:50   But maybe let's save it for another time.

01:11:53   I feel like you feel strongly about jackets.

01:11:57   - We decided to buy new coats for everyone,

01:11:59   so it's on my mind.

01:12:00   (laughing)

01:12:03   And so I think, so like for me,

01:12:06   like the way 512Pixels makes money

01:12:08   is really simple. I have a sidebar ad run from a third-party company who I've

01:12:12   partnered with like five years now and it doesn't make much money. It makes

01:12:17   enough to cover the hosting. Like the site with just the sidebar ad for me

01:12:21   breaks even and any money that I make each month is either through RSS ads

01:12:28   which have risen and fallen in popularity over the time I've been doing

01:12:33   them they're doing okay right now but for I think overall that that business

01:12:38   model is hurting and they get a lot of people who have blogs who sell our set

01:12:41   sponsorships are struggling with that I make money the other ways like

01:12:46   affiliate links on Amazon like if you click that link under my video to buy

01:12:50   the adorable Macintosh Apple watch stand I'll get a cut of that like I'm not

01:12:54   ashamed of that whatever strip my coat off that's and that's so ethically wrong

01:13:00   Yeah, I'm trying to boost the sales of wow. You should you should be ashamed of yourself

01:13:05   How can you buy jackets with that dirty money?

01:13:09   Money on your children's shoulders, man

01:13:13   yeah, so

01:13:16   So for me five little pixels is a part of of my

01:13:21   Business it's a part of my income, but it's not

01:13:24   The time I put into it. Honestly if I were to be brutally honest is not worth the money I make from it

01:13:29   I do it because I love it and I do it because it's a place for me to get thoughts into the world.

01:13:34   But blogging for me is not the business that it is for other people.

01:13:38   It's still like a, and again, and I don't mean this in a disparaging way in any sense,

01:13:42   but it still has remained more of like a hobby type project for you.

01:13:46   Yeah, right. Like I said, if you look at the hours I spend during the work week,

01:13:50   the vast majority are relay and 512 is a fun distraction from that. Now, what I've done

01:13:57   over the last year is move the 5 pixels brand and expand it into YouTube.

01:14:03   And for all the reasons you guys just talked about, right, that there's an audience there

01:14:07   that my content really works well on video, that I can write about stuff, but if I can

01:14:11   show people and I can be funny on video and I can make things that are interesting to

01:14:15   watch, then they do well.

01:14:17   And the YouTube channel does do well.

01:14:19   And it, you know, again, it's not paying a lot of bills, but the YouTube channel does

01:14:25   make money.

01:14:26   It's not a lot.

01:14:27   to make money on YouTube unless you're enormous,

01:14:29   but it's making some, and it's making enough for me

01:14:31   to justify doing it to an extent.

01:14:34   And I think all of that stuff,

01:14:37   like if someone who's been doing it for eight years,

01:14:39   like Myke and I own an extremely successful

01:14:42   podcast business, which we're gonna talk about in a second,

01:14:44   like someone who's been doing it this long

01:14:46   who has an audience, 512's readership is bigger than ever.

01:14:49   Like 2016 was the most pages I've done ever in a year.

01:14:53   I've got more RSS subscribers than ever.

01:14:55   it's harder than ever to make money at it.

01:14:58   And I think that hurts independent blogging

01:15:01   if you look at independent blogging as a way, as a job.

01:15:05   And I think, I honestly think that's the wrong way

01:15:07   to look at it.

01:15:08   There are people who can do that, right?

01:15:09   There's people like Hotkey and Gruber who,

01:15:12   and Jason, Snell, who blog and do podcasts for a living.

01:15:17   But it started as writing, it started as a blog.

01:15:20   I think that window is, I think that time has passed.

01:15:23   I think that it's really hard to make that work now.

01:15:26   But I'd agree with you Federico,

01:15:29   that independent blogging in the sense of

01:15:31   I'm really interested in something

01:15:33   and I just wanna share it with the world,

01:15:34   that that is richer than ever.

01:15:36   And if you have niche content, like the pen addict,

01:15:39   Brad Dowdy has made a career for himself

01:15:43   in the pen space and with his company, NotCo.

01:15:46   - Million page views a month.

01:15:48   I just have to throw that in.

01:15:49   - That's humongous, it's crazy.

01:15:53   I have a niche in, it's much smaller than pens and paper,

01:15:57   but I've carved a niche out for myself

01:15:58   in the Apple historian realm.

01:16:00   And you know that limits the size of 512.

01:16:02   512 is bigger than ever, but I think it could be bigger

01:16:05   if I were broader.

01:16:06   And I just don't want to be broader, I don't have to be.

01:16:08   So I talk about esoteric things,

01:16:10   and the people who are interested in that love it,

01:16:11   and people who aren't interested in it

01:16:12   quit reading me years ago, and that's fine.

01:16:14   You can find your spot, you can find what you're good at,

01:16:17   you can hone your skill.

01:16:18   But I think if you expect it to make a business out of it,

01:16:21   that's really hard.

01:16:22   Like that has nothing to do with the platform, right?

01:16:24   Like you can be on WordPress, you can own it,

01:16:27   which is what I like owning my content,

01:16:29   like that I can have a database of all my stuff.

01:16:32   But you know if that stuff is scary or like difficult

01:16:35   or like too expensive, like there's lots of good

01:16:38   hosted options and you can go do it.

01:16:39   Like just go start writing, go start something.

01:16:41   And that, I agree with you Federico, is easier than ever

01:16:44   and the tools are better than ever.

01:16:46   And I think like as a thing, blogging is fine.

01:16:49   - YouTube is an interesting example

01:16:52   is no matter how big you are with YouTube, there is money there immediately. Monetisation

01:17:03   is built into the analytics. The promise of money is there immediately. All you need to

01:17:12   do is get the views and that isn't the case with other types of independent stuff. So

01:17:19   I think that's one of the reasons that YouTube is starting to win out, right?

01:17:22   Like Federico said, and I agree that there seems to be more people vlogging than blogging,

01:17:26   right?

01:17:27   That seems to be the thing that's happening now is because if what you're looking to do

01:17:30   is try and make some money from your side project, then of course you're going to consider

01:17:34   the platform that has monetization built in a standard for everyone.

01:17:38   It's available to everyone.

01:17:40   All they need to do is get the views on their videos.

01:17:42   Yeah, just use Clickbait like Myke.

01:17:45   Yeah, I love it.

01:17:46   I'm all about it and I bait all of my videos.

01:17:50   Clickbait is a thing I stand by that Casey Neistat said

01:17:55   about clickbait, which is that it's enticing but not false.

01:18:00   - Yeah, I'm down with that.

01:18:01   And I think it's interesting too,

01:18:02   I do wanna talk about Relay and talk about the network effect

01:18:06   but the shift from writing to video,

01:18:09   like video is hard, at least it is for me,

01:18:11   and part of that is that I have really high standards

01:18:14   for myself, like I'm not one,

01:18:17   I can't just sit down in front of a camera and just talk.

01:18:19   Anything that I produce is like hours of me

01:18:22   saying the same thing over and over

01:18:23   and picking the one time I said it that I like.

01:18:25   - You're not one of these people

01:18:27   that just walks around with their iPhone in the street,

01:18:28   right, is that what you're saying?

01:18:29   - No, I wanna be one of those.

01:18:30   - No, just Kraton's.

01:18:32   - Because I don't have that gift,

01:18:33   I don't have that skill set.

01:18:35   I'm awkward and not funny

01:18:36   and I have to work to be unawkward and funny.

01:18:38   (laughing)

01:18:40   But so many people, so many people are really good at that

01:18:44   And so there's monetization,

01:18:45   and some people just find that really comfortable.

01:18:47   Where a lot of people find writing really difficult.

01:18:49   I mean, Myke, you and I are different in this way,

01:18:51   where I enjoy writing, I like to think I'm good at it,

01:18:55   I like to think that I've improved.

01:18:57   But the way that I solve problems,

01:18:58   the way that I think about things is I write them out.

01:19:00   And I don't process verbally very well.

01:19:04   That's why I repeat myself on podcasts endlessly.

01:19:07   I need to write it out first to think about it.

01:19:10   And so for me, blogging was a better fit.

01:19:13   But what's great about all this stuff is there are,

01:19:16   there's all these different channels, right?

01:19:17   And if Medium can get their act together,

01:19:20   and I hope they can, and they can figure out a way

01:19:23   to let people make money,

01:19:25   and be successful, then that's great.

01:19:29   And blogging needs that.

01:19:30   Right now, if you want some back blogging thing,

01:19:33   you have to open Patreon.

01:19:34   And your number's a publican, that's weird.

01:19:36   But if they can create a YouTube-like system for writing,

01:19:42   That's great, thumbs up, way to go medium, I hope someone can make that work because

01:19:46   blogging needs that.

01:19:48   But it's just a very different approach than how it's traditionally been done.

01:19:52   So I just want to, before we wrap up, I want to touch on something, which is right, we're

01:19:56   talking about people should be independent and stuff, and we own a company where people

01:20:02   produce content for us, right?

01:20:05   Which is strange, because the people that have their shows on our network, they are

01:20:10   part of relay FM. But my kind of feeling on this is that we do our very best to give everybody

01:20:18   the adequate amount of independence that they need, right, to get their stuff done. We work

01:20:23   with people to make all of our stuff better. But, you know, really, I mean, this is just

01:20:28   something we talk about with everyone. If they want to go, if a show wants to leave,

01:20:32   then we'll do everything we can to help people leave. Like, the content that our hosts produce

01:20:38   is their content. We just give them the tools and the place and the processes underlying

01:20:46   it all to make it happen. Is that fair, Steven, to say?

01:20:51   It is. I think what we've tried to do is create an environment and create a set of tools for

01:20:57   people to do their own thing. Sometimes we get questions about a topic on a show or a

01:21:03   sponsor wants to know what a show is going to be about. The truthful answer is we don't

01:21:07   know because we don't exercise editorial control and we have some some

01:21:10   guidelines right like you can't say we have a naughty word list I don't say

01:21:14   those words are you gonna get bleeped or knocked out of the master feed but like

01:21:17   even then like that's that's all we've got we we I think have created a space

01:21:25   where people can come in and be creative and like try things and talk about

01:21:29   things they're interested in and use our CMS and use our tools and have access to

01:21:35   our designer and access to our Slack.

01:21:37   And for most of the shows, we can monetize them.

01:21:43   And we sell ads, you know, Myke, you and I do that

01:21:46   for the hosts, they get a cut, we get a cut.

01:21:49   And I think it's been really successful.

01:21:54   We haven't had a show leave, we've had shows turn over

01:21:56   and shows come to an end and stuff,

01:21:57   but we've never had anyone leave.

01:21:59   And I'm sure that will happen one day.

01:22:01   And I agree with you, we will do everything we can

01:22:04   to give that person access to their content,

01:22:07   to help them land on their feet wherever they end up

01:22:09   if they want our help.

01:22:10   Because at the end of the day,

01:22:13   that content, it's their work, right?

01:22:19   I'm not on, you aren't on our 25 shows.

01:22:22   It's people doing their own outlines,

01:22:25   doing their own research, doing their own recording,

01:22:27   using our editors or doing their own editing.

01:22:31   we've just created a framework for people to create within.

01:22:35   And I remember when we first started Relay,

01:22:38   our very first conversations were like,

01:22:40   that's what we wanted to build.

01:22:42   We wanted to build a company, we wanted to build a network,

01:22:45   and we wanted to have jobs,

01:22:46   but we wanted to really create a space

01:22:49   for people to work within.

01:22:50   And that is something that I think is a little unusual

01:22:55   in podcasting, where a lot of networks

01:22:59   have complete editorial control over their shows.

01:23:03   It's a very different business, right,

01:23:04   if you're doing NPR-style stuff,

01:23:06   like Gimlet or Slate or those people.

01:23:09   Totally different business model, not any better,

01:23:11   not any worse than ours, just different.

01:23:14   But this is how we've chosen to do it,

01:23:15   because at the heart of it, at the end of the day,

01:23:18   you and I, Myke, and Federico and Jason and everyone else,

01:23:21   we're all creators, we all want to make stuff.

01:23:24   You and I have a podcast network,

01:23:26   so you and I can make podcasts, right?

01:23:29   We needed a place to put our stuff,

01:23:31   and we've been able to scale it up to other people.

01:23:34   And so we give them the tools that we want to have,

01:23:37   and we give them the freedom that we want to have,

01:23:39   and I think it's been, I think it's worked out really well.

01:23:44   - And one last thing before we do wrap up,

01:23:46   'cause I guess it is related to this topic, I think,

01:23:49   is that Manton Reese is currently working

01:23:53   on a Kickstarter campaign to generate,

01:23:57   I find it's hard to explain,

01:23:58   it's like Twitter hosted somewhere else or something? Can you help me with that?

01:24:05   Because I've backed this project because I like what he's trying to do but I'm

01:24:10   struggling to understand the product that he's making.

01:24:14   Yeah so it's and I hope I'm fair in my representation because it is a little

01:24:20   complicated. Microdot blog is going to be a set of tools so it does have a

01:24:25   timeline like Twitter but it's based on RSS so if you don't want to open the app

01:24:31   and you just want to see everything Federico writes on his microblog then

01:24:35   you can just like subscribe to it in your RSS reader and just get it there

01:24:40   and never worry about being a social network so you can use it as like a

01:24:43   blogging platform or you can use it as a as a social network I think there's also

01:24:49   like going to be like WordPress plugins so you can like move content from your

01:24:54   your actual blog to the social network.

01:24:57   It's a couple different things,

01:24:59   but I think the heart of it is you own your content.

01:25:02   I have a recurring task in Todoist every six months

01:25:06   to download my Twitter archive,

01:25:07   because one day we're gonna wake up

01:25:08   and Twitter's gonna be gone, just gone.

01:25:11   And I would like my 10 years of talking about silly things,

01:25:15   and so I download that every once in a while.

01:25:18   Well, with this, you would have access to your stuff

01:25:20   and you would be able to export it

01:25:24   use it freely and openly. I think that he has a little bit of work to do to really

01:25:29   flesh that out in the way that he explains it. The Kickstarter is about the

01:25:32   book about independent blogging. Like, building the thing is sort of

01:25:37   secondary to the Kickstarter project and I fully expect in talking to him and I

01:25:44   fully expect that we will see more details about the the platform very soon.

01:25:52   Like I it's totally real like there are people who have seen it there people who've been using it as my understanding like

01:25:58   And I think that I think he'll do a clearer job explaining it

01:26:04   but um, but I think the heart of it is you own your your content and

01:26:09   You instead of having a centralized social network you can

01:26:14   Put content into the system from from numerous places

01:26:17   you can use the first party app or you can use something else because it's all API based and

01:26:21   You know so I could have you know, theoretically my own blog and just write little things and it gets posted here automatically. So

01:26:28   I'm excited by it. I think that

01:26:31   The world I think at least our world that's sort of nerdy world like

01:26:36   we sort of exist with Twitter as the water cooler and that's really fragile and

01:26:42   I don't think Twitter will last at least in its current form. I think there will be a time where

01:26:48   Like all this stuff that the three of us have had possible in our career because of Twitter like that won't be available to people

01:26:53   anymore because Twitter will be drastically different or be gone and

01:26:57   I don't think Facebook's the answer. I don't think I don't think people necessarily want all their other stuff mixed in

01:27:03   So maybe this is it. I hope it is. I

01:27:05   hope that there's an opportunity for

01:27:08   This sort of community that we have on Twitter to either move or like regenerate in new ways new interesting ways

01:27:16   somewhere else and I think man is onto something with that. Yeah, I think people should go check it out

01:27:21   There'll be a link in our show notes, which of course you can find today over at relay.fm/connecting/124

01:27:26   Thank you so much for

01:27:29   Listening to this week's show if you want to find out more about my lovely co-hosts

01:27:35   You should go to their independent blogging websites like 512 pixels dotnet for Steven and Mac stories dotnet for Federico

01:27:42   Federico's on Twitter

01:27:43   is out for tichy, Stephen is out at ISMH and I am at imyke, I M Y K E. Whilst those

01:27:49   guys were talking about their real strengths around blogging, of course you can go to michaelsright.com

01:27:54   for all of the latest sticker news that you've been hankering for. I'm sure that there's

01:28:00   a real good audience for me there. Thanks again to Pingda Ministry Supply in Blue Apron

01:28:06   for supporting this week's show. Thank you for listening. And maybe listen too, who knows?

01:28:10   We'll be back next time.

01:28:11   Until then, say goodbye, guys.

01:28:13   - Adios, darche.

01:28:14   - Adios.