67: Being in Charge of a Space Rocket


00:00:00   [Music]

00:00:06   From Reave AFM, this is Connected, episode number 67.

00:00:10   Today's show is brought to you by Braintree, Fracture and Squarespace.

00:00:14   My name is Myke Hurley and I'm joined by Federico Vittucci. Hi Federico.

00:00:18   Hello Myke.

00:00:19   How are you sir?

00:00:20   I'm doing great Myke, how are you?

00:00:22   Yeah I'm very well, Stephen Hackett is out on assignment this week.

00:00:24   So it's just me and you.

00:00:26   He's reporting on the field for car sharing services.

00:00:29   Yes, he is actually.

00:00:31   So this starts one of those horrific things where now me and you have to do the follow-up, which is, it just never goes well.

00:00:38   I will hold your hand, Myke. We're in this together. We can do this.

00:00:43   It's all I ever want, really. As long as we're in this stuff together, I'm happy.

00:00:47   So, let me start, Myke.

00:00:49   So last week we were talking about the pro apps on the App Store and developers building

00:00:56   apps for professionals and selling them, you know, not at $2 but maybe at a higher price

00:01:02   and trying to make a pro business on the iOS App Store. Well, I got an interesting email

00:01:07   from Tim Shaton. He works for GTI Predictive and this company, this is quite difficult

00:01:15   for me to explain because they do crazy stuff. But basically what they do is they created

00:01:20   an entire division of their company to replace industrial instruments and other tools with

00:01:27   iPad software. So they make apps like a vibration analysis app called Vypro or a machine shop

00:01:37   balancer or a thermal imaging app. They make thermal growth adjustment for shaft alignment.

00:01:45   I don't even know what it means, but it sounds awesome. I mean, science, right? And these apps

00:01:51   are not sold at your typical app store price. For example, Phase Pro, which is a phase analysis app,

00:01:58   it's $200 on the app store. I just wanted to just point out it's phase, right? Because it

00:02:03   It sounded like you said face, which is kind of funny.

00:02:06   Like it just analyzes faces and gives you a rating out of 10.

00:02:08   It's a phase.

00:02:10   I don't know what a phase in an industrial whatever is, but still,

00:02:15   Vibe RMS machine certification, $200.

00:02:21   And they have built a very profitable business with these kind of very specific,

00:02:28   very niche, but, you know, advanced iPad software.

00:02:32   And it was very kind to send us an email with all the links and the details of these apps.

00:02:37   This is one of the many examples that I had in mind. A company trying to find a market segment,

00:02:45   a very specific one. And once you find your audience, once you find your market,

00:02:51   and you make a software that becomes irreplaceable for people or for other companies, they are going

00:02:57   to give you a lot of money. If people find the kind of tool that they need, not just that they like,

00:03:03   because this is not about personal preference, this is about getting work done. So once a company,

00:03:09   or once an individual, or a small team, it doesn't matter, once people find what they need, they're

00:03:14   going to give you money. Yeah, the market is there, you just need to find it. The market might not be

00:03:19   huge, and in those instances you just charge a ton of money. Yeah, exactly, because it's the kind of

00:03:26   advanced software that acquires a very high investment beforehand

00:03:31   and you're allowed basically by the market to charge this kind of money afterwards.

00:03:36   So thank you Tim for the follow-up

00:03:39   and such a great example.

00:03:43   I don't know if you run a factory maybe you should check out the apps on the App Store

00:03:48   or if you're Dr. Drang or someone like him maybe you will need these apps, I don't know.

00:03:53   they look, you know, awesome to me because I don't understand what's going on in there.

00:03:57   So it looks like...

00:03:58   They look awesome in a non-usual awesome kind of way, right?

00:04:03   Because they kind of look like hell to me, right?

00:04:05   I guess it's just all this stuff and I'm like "I don't know what you do"

00:04:08   but that's the kind of awesomeness about it because I look at it and I'm like

00:04:11   "I can see that this thing exists but I don't know what any of it means."

00:04:15   What's the the German word for being fascinated by something you're really afraid of?

00:04:21   There's gonna be one. There's gonna be one.

00:04:24   Some chapter markers? I'm not sure.

00:04:26   No.

00:04:27   So Myke, tell us about the other items in the follow-up.

00:04:31   So Lauren wrote in, and we were talking last week about there kind of being an Apple app

00:04:36   or like a banner app for the iPad Pro, right? Like the big thing, like GarageBand or something

00:04:42   like that. And Lauren wrote in to say "It seemed obvious to me at the announcement that

00:04:45   the banner apps for the iPad Pro are Adobe Comp, Adobe Photoshop Fix, Office, Procreate

00:04:50   and the anatomy program that nobody will ever use.

00:04:52   Just as Pixelmator was the banner app for iPad Air 2.

00:04:55   I completely agree with this, right?

00:04:57   They brought those developers onto stage

00:05:00   and they were showing what these apps could do.

00:05:02   And additionally, you know, they gave

00:05:04   kind of early access to people like 53.

00:05:07   And this definitely underscores the point

00:05:09   that I think I was making last week about like,

00:05:11   you know, there are apps, they're just not Apple apps.

00:05:14   But I think that this further shows the change

00:05:17   that Apple are going through with these things.

00:05:19   They used to be the company that made this stuff,

00:05:21   but now they're kind of outsourcing it.

00:05:23   And I just don't know if that is the right thing to do

00:05:27   or the wrong thing to do.

00:05:28   Like should Apple be kind of setting the pace

00:05:31   and showing what should be done on these things,

00:05:33   or should they be working with third parties

00:05:34   to create different experiences?

00:05:36   I don't know what the right answer is,

00:05:39   but I think it would be nice to see a mix of both personally

00:05:44   because there is kind of like a,

00:05:46   I think there is like a perception thing

00:05:48   that if Apple is doing something,

00:05:49   then they believe that it's worth it, right?

00:05:51   They're putting their money where their mouth is.

00:05:54   But I do think it's incredibly important

00:05:56   that they continue to work with third parties in this way,

00:05:58   this more direct way, so there are more choices

00:06:01   when these new features and new products

00:06:04   come onto the market.

00:06:05   - Yeah, I totally agree.

00:06:06   And I also believe Apple should resume their effort

00:06:11   to lead by example.

00:06:14   It was great to see Apple make GarageBand

00:06:17   or the iWork suite for the iPad a few years ago.

00:06:21   And now that they're not,

00:06:22   I mean they're still updating those apps,

00:06:24   but they're not making new paid apps on the App Store anymore

00:06:28   and I feel like they really should,

00:06:30   because it kind of sets the tone for other developers

00:06:34   to follow and to be inspired by Apple.

00:06:36   And I really wanna see Apple make Logic and Final Cut

00:06:40   for the iPad Pro.

00:06:41   I don't think it's too absurd at this point.

00:06:44   We'll see what happens.

00:06:47   Again, I have high hopes for next year.

00:06:51   iOS 10, this is 2016, we'll see what happens, Myke.

00:06:56   You know, I gotta talk about car sharing services again.

00:07:01   I'm sorry, Michael, but we got follow up.

00:07:03   We got follow up to handle, and a lot of people wrote in,

00:07:08   including Spanish listener, Kicatin, I assume,

00:07:12   it's the way that you pronounce this.

00:07:16   We got this piece of feedback many many times. There's a similar service in other European countries called Car2Go.

00:07:23   We mentioned this last week, Zipcar as well. Zipcar, yeah.

00:07:27   It exists in the US and the UK.

00:07:29   And Car2Go seems to be available in other European countries such as Spain.

00:07:34   And I'm pretty sure I got feedback from maybe Denmark or Finland, I don't remember.

00:07:41   member. So they use electric smart cars. We use regular gas cars here.

00:07:50   Steven also had a question for you in the document that we share, Myke. Does

00:07:55   Myke use any car sharing services in London? Because very famously

00:07:59   you don't have a driving license. Yeah, so I don't use a service like Zipcar or

00:08:04   Car2Go or what was the one that you used? Enjoy. Enjoy, because I don't drive, I

00:08:09   can't drive but I do use Uber quite a lot.

00:08:13   Uber? Yeah because it's it's so convenient here in London and there's

00:08:17   some stuff going on right now where like the the government and the transport

00:08:21   authority are trying to restrict Uber. Oh that's going around everywhere. Yeah I

00:08:25   signed a petition. I know that Uber is kind of like there are people at Uber

00:08:29   that make it like a terrible company but it is incredibly useful and the drivers

00:08:34   seem really awesome and everybody that I speak to that is an Uber driver seems to

00:08:38   be very happy with being an Uber driver. So I don't know, I mean I like the

00:08:43   service a lot and it's very very very useful to me.

00:08:46   Yeah I don't want to get into the politics of Uber because I got a few

00:08:50   friends here who have very strong opinions about you know the taxi

00:08:53   organizations and Uber coming over. But I just want to say that from my

00:08:57   perspective, from my citizen and user perspective, progress always wins in the

00:09:03   end and that's what people want. So you could force someone to use an old, antiquated, more

00:09:10   expensive system or you could open the door to progress. But I believe that always happens

00:09:16   in the end anyway, so we'll see.

00:09:19   Yeah, definitely. So there you go, car sharing services. This is the show that you go to

00:09:24   for car sharing news.

00:09:25   Yeah, definitely.

00:09:26   Stay tuned to Connected for more car sharing service news in the future.

00:09:29   Oh man, imagine when Apple makes a car.

00:09:32   This is the thing we're laying the groundwork man. We can point back and say we've been

00:09:37   talking about cars for years.

00:09:41   This week's episode is brought to you by Braintree. Code for easy online payments. If you're a

00:09:45   mobile app developer you should be checking out Braintree. They are the payment solution

00:09:49   used by companies like Uber, Airbnb, Hotel Tonight, Living Social and Muntree. Braintree

00:09:55   has made the payment experiences in all of these apps so fantastic. Like I was just talking

00:09:59   about Uber right we were just talking about it and it's one of the things I

00:10:03   love about Uber is the payment stuff is so simple like you just put your

00:10:06   information in one time and you're good to go like it's just sorted out like

00:10:09   I've got my card in there I don't ever have to worry about it I get great

00:10:11   receipts I've never had a problem like that I've had stuff refunded to me like

00:10:15   super easily like this is all part of Braintree and now you can add similar

00:10:18   experiences to your own app as well with excellent customer service and simple

00:10:22   integration Braintree gets you ready to receive payments quickly. Braintree's

00:10:26   continuous support plus fast payouts means you'll be prepared as your company grows from your first

00:10:30   dollar to your billionth. Braintree is also helping solve the problem of mobile card abandonment by

00:10:35   offering a best-in-class mobile checkout experience and they make payment experiences in your

00:10:40   favorite apps seamless and magical. Now you can add a similar experience to your own app as well.

00:10:45   Braintree has a full stack payment solution with support for all payment types that your customers

00:10:50   might want including PayPal, Apple Pay, Bitcoin, Venmo cards and more with one single integration.

00:10:56   As a user that is so awesome that I can just choose however I want to pay.

00:10:59   And my understanding is from looking into this that Braintree is really easy to integrate.

00:11:03   Apparently it's like 10 lines of code to put this in which kind of seems a bit magical to me.

00:11:07   I mean I guess that's the whole thing about it being seems so magical.

00:11:10   Braintree is with you across all platforms with superior for protection,

00:11:14   fantastic customer service and fast payouts.

00:11:17   To learn more and for your first $50,000 in transactions fee free

00:11:21   go to BraintreePayments.com/connected

00:11:24   that's BraintreePayments.com/connected for your first $50,000 in transactions fee free.

00:11:30   Thank you so much to Braintree for their support this year.

00:11:32   So Federico you published a really interesting article the other day about kind of branching

00:11:41   out again with your automation. I haven't seen anything automation related from you in a while.

00:11:46   It seemed like you've maybe gotten a little bit comfortable with the setting,

00:11:50   like the kind of setup that you had. So can you kind of paint the picture, like you were using

00:11:54   editorial and workflows I assume mainly, but now there seems to have been a bit of a shift in that.

00:12:00   Yes, I started using editorial in August 2013, actually in November 2012, since I got the first

00:12:11   beta, and of course the app came out nine months later in the summer of two years ago. And I've

00:12:17   And I've been using editorial for all my writing for Maxories or the Maxories Weekly newsletter

00:12:24   ever since.

00:12:25   Two years I built dozens and dozens of workflows in the app and I used it in conjunction with

00:12:32   Pythonista, which is another app from the same developer, and eventually I kind of consolidated

00:12:38   all my workflow into editorial.

00:12:41   I made workflows for Markdown, for WordPress, for Mac storage deals, for basically everything.

00:12:50   And I was really really happy with editorial and I still think it's an amazing app.

00:12:55   Doesn't have anything similar that can get close to its power on iOS.

00:13:01   The only problem is, since iOS 9 came out, the first beta in June, I've been wanting

00:13:08   to write in Markdown in Split View, basically.

00:13:13   I want to use my text editor in Split View.

00:13:16   I want to use it in full resolution on the iPad Pro.

00:13:18   I want to use the new keyboard.

00:13:20   I want to use the shortcut bar.

00:13:22   I want to have all these new iOS 9 features

00:13:24   in the text editor that I use every day,

00:13:26   which is my most used app alongside Twitter and RSS,

00:13:30   maybe, living into my text editor.

00:13:33   It's the single piece of software

00:13:35   that powers my entire business.

00:13:37   because without a proper setup I wouldn't be able to write.

00:13:41   Or I would be really slow, which would be bad.

00:13:43   Or I would be really annoyed and therefore not inspired,

00:13:46   which would also be bad.

00:13:48   So I stuck with editorial on iOS 9

00:13:53   even without split view and iOS 9 features

00:13:57   throughout the entire summer.

00:13:59   I wrote my entire iOS 9 review in it.

00:14:03   But when it was time to get an iPad Pro

00:14:05   and when I was sent the review unit and when I saw what editorial looked like on the big screen,

00:14:12   I was really annoyed. I really couldn't bring myself to use the app in basically upscaled,

00:14:23   blown-up mode on the iPad Pro. Like how I feel every day when I have to use Google Docs.

00:14:28   Exactly. So I was wondering, maybe it's time for me to consider alternatives.

00:14:36   And for two years, my main problem is, there are certain tasks that if I don't automate, I'm not leaving a tutorial.

00:14:45   After many years of automating certain things on my device, such as creating links, or linking to apps,

00:14:54   or inserting footnotes into a document. If I don't have those tasks in an

00:15:02   automatic way, I'm just not gonna do them manually because I'm too lazy or stubborn

00:15:08   or you know it's just a force of habit. I have things like that that I have

00:15:13   integrated into my system or have decided not to just because it's like

00:15:16   this is just a little thing like a little additional thing and if it's not

00:15:21   done easily for me, then I'm not gonna do it because it's not massively

00:15:25   important, it's a little detail, but if those little details take 10-15

00:15:30   minutes every single time, it's like well I'm not gonna do that. So same as you,

00:15:34   I mean not in the same kind of ways but I've got different things in my

00:15:38   workflows and my systems that do things for me because otherwise they just might

00:15:43   get left out. Yeah and I know that quite a few people maybe like to help jokingly

00:15:49   make fun maybe of the workflows that I have. But I'll tell you, some workflows, I may have spent

00:15:57   days putting them together, but they make me, they allow me to make money, basically. Because if I put

00:16:06   together a workflow that automates generating links to apps that are on sale, I can have an article with

00:16:14   with a collection of app deals and discounts and I make money, because those are affiliate

00:16:20   links. Or if I have a workflow that lets me put together screenshots or a collection of

00:16:27   links very easily, I can save time to do something else, which means more traffic to the website.

00:16:32   So I try to keep a very practical approach here. I need to be able to get work done,

00:16:37   I need to be able to pay the rent at the end of each month.

00:16:40   What can I do to speed up, to make my core task easier, faster, or more efficient?

00:16:51   So when I was considering moving from editorial, my main question was, can I replicate some

00:16:56   key features anywhere else?

00:16:59   So I just want to stop about the moving from editorial thing, because I know that your

00:17:03   frustrations were that maybe the app isn't being updated as quick as you

00:17:07   would like, right, with new features. Is part of this like a worry that

00:17:12   editorial, if it went away, what would you do? Also, partly, yeah, that's not the main

00:17:19   reason, but it contributes to that. Well I think this is something you have to consider.

00:17:24   Considering how much of your life is living in these

00:17:27   applications, you need to have a backup plan if they die or if they go away.

00:17:33   It's the rule of two for apps, you know? One app is zero apps.

00:17:38   One is none.

00:17:39   One is none.

00:17:40   So, you know, basically I wanted to give myself options.

00:17:44   And it was kind of tough initially for me to consider this process.

00:17:48   Like, what am I going to judge an important workflow and what, you know, not useless but maybe secondary,

00:17:55   that I can keep editorial in blown-up mode, you know, just for that workflow.

00:18:00   So I cut my list down to six or seven workflows that I need to absolutely have in an automated way in my text editor.

00:18:10   And I remembered one day, there was this app that I bought a couple of years ago called One Writer.

00:18:17   And I had basically forgotten about this app.

00:18:23   In the back of my mind I kind of knew that it was possible to create JavaScript actions inside this app.

00:18:31   But maybe when I was in the tutorial I didn't want to acknowledge the fact, or maybe I just didn't need another app with actions and scripts.

00:18:40   But now it was the perfect time to give one writer another chance and to see what can I do with JavaScript.

00:18:47   So it was also a good excuse to learn the basics of a new scripting language.

00:18:51   I won't lie here, Myke.

00:18:54   I kind of have fun doing these type of things.

00:18:57   You know, it makes me relax.

00:18:59   I don't know. I don't know.

00:19:01   Maybe, you know, it makes sense for me because I like learning.

00:19:05   I like being curious and I like basically challenging my own brain.

00:19:09   And I think it's good for brain health to, you know, to try new things,

00:19:13   to learn every day.

00:19:15   How did you come back around to OneWriter?

00:19:17   Because again, the process was, OK, I need another option.

00:19:22   I need a tax editor.

00:19:24   What can I do to automate these key tasks?

00:19:28   And I just made the connection.

00:19:30   You know, OneWriter has this JavaScript support.

00:19:34   I can maybe take a look.

00:19:37   And when I first read the documentation,

00:19:41   I realized that it wasn't as advanced as a tutorial, of course.

00:19:45   There's no visual workflow building here.

00:19:48   It's all scripts and it's all JavaScript code.

00:19:53   You cannot drag and drop actions, there's no preset actions for you,

00:19:57   you're all on your own.

00:19:59   This is the scenario for me where

00:20:01   I could dip my toe into editorial like I can with workflow, and we're going to talk

00:20:06   about workflow in a little bit, because it's visual, right? So I can

00:20:10   use it like building blocks but I was looking at the screenshots of what you

00:20:15   were doing with one writer and it's impossible for me to understand so I was

00:20:20   like looking at some of this stuff and I can see that you're using Coda right

00:20:23   which is yeah Coda is so beautiful yeah it is oh my word I actually bought it

00:20:28   recently I don't even know why I did it I can't remember the reason why I did

00:20:35   this out of goodwill. I needed to do something I can't remember what it was

00:20:40   and I was doing some googling and it was like Coda could do it and it was just

00:20:45   like one thing I needed one time and I was like man I do love this app so I

00:20:50   bought it because you know Panic is just one of those companies like I just want

00:20:54   to give them money all the time right any any reason that I can keep it's like

00:20:59   with these guys it's like with smile it's like with the Omni group like I

00:21:03   I just want to give these people money.

00:21:06   So I bought Coda for iOS.

00:21:08   It's interesting, there are companies like this that are just like "let me give you some

00:21:12   of my money because I like what you do".

00:21:15   Yeah, I know what it was.

00:21:17   I was kind of looking for a new text editor and I was like "let me just see".

00:21:21   It was like "nope, too powerful".

00:21:23   Nope!

00:21:24   This is not for me!

00:21:27   But it's stunning.

00:21:29   Anyway, so I'm looking at these screenshots and I don't understand how any of this works.

00:21:37   So how did you even learn JavaScript?

00:21:40   You don't have a coding background, you're like me.

00:21:43   You don't have a computer science degree or anything like that, like so many of our friends

00:21:48   do.

00:21:49   You don't have any training in it.

00:21:50   How did you learn this stuff?

00:21:51   So what I'm about to say will maybe sound like heresy to programmers, but at least for

00:21:59   So I learned a bit of Python years ago. I read some books and I did a lot of online documentation.

00:22:08   I read the standard library documentation for Python and a lot of trial and error.

00:22:14   Stack overflow questions and common threads, that kind of stuff. I just learned a bit of Python on my own.

00:22:21   With the basics of Python, I feel like it was very easy to get started with JavaScript

00:22:26   because the main ideas are kind of the same.

00:22:29   You create variables, you need to be careful when you want to use plain text,

00:22:33   which is called literal strings.

00:22:37   You just need to learn a bit of commands,

00:22:41   and they're called objects and methods in JavaScript.

00:22:45   But it's different from Python, and I personally prefer how Python is more readable,

00:22:54   I prefer the syntax, but JavaScript...

00:22:56   - I would like to just state for the record

00:22:58   that the connected podcast does not endorse

00:23:00   or support any one specific coding language.

00:23:02   - No, no, no, yeah.

00:23:03   It's just me.

00:23:04   I'm totally, so for programmers out there,

00:23:07   please don't get upset.

00:23:08   - I don't want that kind of follow up, man.

00:23:10   I don't want it.

00:23:11   - Yes, please don't be upset.

00:23:13   We are nice guys.

00:23:14   And I'm just an ignorant person

00:23:17   who learned some very basic Python

00:23:20   that he uses for very basic scripts

00:23:23   that I'll ever get my job done.

00:23:25   So, anyway, I basically took a look at some online documentation for JavaScript

00:23:34   and, again, a lot of Stack Overflow and just trial and error.

00:23:38   A bit of feedback for Coda.

00:23:42   You can edit code in the app, but you cannot run or execute JavaScript.

00:23:49   It's not an interpreter, it's just a text editor.

00:23:52   So I was looking for something like Pythonista but for JavaScript on iOS

00:23:57   and sadly I couldn't find any options, Myke, aside from a single app called IJS

00:24:04   which has not been updated for the iPad Pro, which doesn't look good, but which executes JavaScript on iOS.

00:24:12   Could it be bumping into some kind of app store rule? Is that the problem maybe?

00:24:16   No, because Pythonista exists, so you know.

00:24:19   So you know.

00:24:20   Python East has had some problems though over time.

00:24:22   Yeah but it's fine, you know.

00:24:24   It doesn't do, it's got its own interpreter built in, doesn't do anything to the system

00:24:29   that doesn't require your permission, you know.

00:24:31   So when you write the code, you have to put it into one writer to execute it to see if

00:24:37   it actually works.

00:24:38   Your test is actually put it back in the app.

00:24:39   See that's not elegant enough really, is it?

00:24:42   No, no, no.

00:24:43   And if anyone is listening, developers, consider the market for a JavaScript interpreter on

00:24:47   iOS.

00:24:48   think it's too crazy. You know why, Myke? Because in the next few months you're going to see, and I'm

00:24:53   not going to tell you who or what or when, but you're going to see a lot of developers starting

00:24:57   to use JavaScript for automation in their iOS apps. You'll see. I believe there's going to be a market,

00:25:03   but we'll follow up on this. Anyway, so yeah, I needed to edit the text in Coda and paste it into

00:25:11   rather than see if it worked. There was a lot of trial and error involved, Michael.

00:25:17   I spent two, three days basically locked into this JavaScript environment, trying to replicate

00:25:24   all my workflows, and in the end I did manage to build them. Maybe they're more simplified,

00:25:30   maybe they're not as advanced or fancy as the workflows in the tutorial, but they replicate

00:25:36   the same functionality. But something even more interesting happened. Because I was using

00:25:43   BurnRider in SplitView, I found myself not needing a lot of the workflows that I used

00:25:50   to have in a tutorial as a fullscreen app. So the ability to use this new text editor,

00:25:56   alongside maybe Safari or my mail program or something else, basically cut many of the

00:26:05   needs for workflows into a single app. So because I can look at two different apps at

00:26:12   the same time, I don't need to do a lot of automation anymore. My workflow for inserting

00:26:18   links from the editorial browser into the text editor, now it just became kind of useless

00:26:25   for OneWriter because I can just put Safari next to the app, tap and hold the Safari address

00:26:31   bar, copy the link and I create a link in the app because it's got a link button in

00:26:38   the shortcut bar thanks to iOS 9.

00:26:42   These iOS 9 features and the ability to use two apps at the same time kind of made me

00:26:47   reconsider some of my automation. But that's not to say that I don't need automation. So

00:26:51   I'm still doing... I have a workflow for generating App Store links. I have another for footnotes.

00:26:59   I actually have two for footnotes.

00:27:01   Today, I just published another one to send my text

00:27:05   to Workflow, which has a new action that publishes it

00:27:09   to my website, because it's got a new WordPress support,

00:27:12   which is awesome.

00:27:13   So it was an interesting process.

00:27:16   And I put a big, giant disclaimer at the top.

00:27:21   If editorial gets an update,

00:27:23   I don't know what's gonna happen.

00:27:25   I'm probably gonna move back.

00:27:27   Because all this was coming from the perspective of,

00:27:31   I'm really annoyed because editorial

00:27:33   doesn't have iOS 9 integration.

00:27:35   When it does have iOS 9 features,

00:27:38   I'm probably going to be tempted to go back.

00:27:41   - But there is a big benefit in doing what you've done.

00:27:45   - Exactly.

00:27:46   - Because you've kind of flexed your muscles

00:27:47   a little bit more and can see that there is options

00:27:52   for you outside of editorial, which is very important.

00:27:55   Yeah, and it was fun, first of all, for me. It makes me feel maybe a little more secure about the kind of tools that I use, because if editorial disappears, I got this other option.

00:28:07   Or if the other option disappears, I got editorial.

00:28:09   And it was informative in a way, not just about JavaScript but to understand the way that I work.

00:28:18   I feel that I understood my needs and my requirements, especially now after iOS 9, a little better.

00:28:25   Because I now like to do this kind of introspection, workflow introspection I guess you could call it.

00:28:31   Every year I like to understand what I really need, how I can simplify my life, how I can save time.

00:28:38   because the end goal for me is... I got three goals. I wanna write stuff that I'm proud of,

00:28:45   I wanna make money, and I wanna spend time with my family and my friends.

00:28:49   So if I can, you know, when it comes to work, if I can create the kind of setup that allows me to do this,

00:28:56   I'm really happy. So every year I like to do this kind of self-analysis and trying to understand what I can improve.

00:29:03   And this is one of those... one of those scenarios, you know, I took a look at

00:29:07   What's my key task every day? I need to write. And what do I use to write? I use this tech editor.

00:29:13   And what's the problem here? It doesn't support iOS 9. So what can I do?

00:29:16   It was a very fun and I feel useful process, Myke.

00:29:20   So going back to the coding thing, you mentioned that you wrote some code from scratch, even though there were other things out there.

00:29:28   Right, like code libraries or whatever you would call it, like examples that you could use.

00:29:33   Why did you do that? Why did you decide to write stuff from scratch instead of like just borrowing from other people done?

00:29:39   because um

00:29:42   There was no

00:29:43   alternative there wasn't no like no one has the need to

00:29:47   I don't know place the cursor next to a footnote and see what the footnote says

00:29:53   So while stuff exists in general, it doesn't exist in the Federico Vittucci way

00:29:59   Exactly, and I'm very nitpicky about the automation that I like to do.

00:30:05   So I used, you know, Philip Grennage, he does a fantastic job with JavaScript and with Python

00:30:11   also on his website, OneTapLess.

00:30:14   So I borrowed, you know, his App Store action for OneWriter and I had to modify it to my

00:30:22   needs but, you know, if I didn't have Philip's work as an inspiration and as a model, I wouldn't

00:30:28   I can probably be able to do that because it requires web actions beyond my knowledge,

00:30:34   but I could modify it to show lists, to give me options and that kind of stuff.

00:30:40   In many cases I like to use something that is made by other people,

00:30:47   so I can also save the time I would have spent making it my own and writing from scratch.

00:30:54   But in the majority of the workflows that are really key to what I do, like footnotes or markdown links in editorial,

00:31:06   I always need to make them from scratch. Because the time that I spend optimizing a workflow made by someone else,

00:31:17   I could have used that to make it from scratch and to make it better from the get-go.

00:31:21   When possible, I like to download workflows from others.

00:31:26   But in general, I try to use, and this is also the reason why I

00:31:29   make my actions and my workflows available to other people,

00:31:33   I try to use them more as a learning tool.

00:31:36   I take a look at what another person does and then I'm gonna use that knowledge

00:31:42   to make my own workflow, to make my own setup here, because I can take a look at the example.

00:31:50   This is what I do, Myke. I download stuff by other people. I take a look, I learn, I try, I fail,

00:31:56   I spend two days, I text you, you tell me I'm crazy, and then we do a podcast about it.

00:32:00   For the remaining actions that you have in editorial, the ones that you can't recreate, I'm assuming because they're too complex maybe,

00:32:09   what is the back up there? Like, do you have any thinking in mind?

00:32:14   Like, what are you gonna do with some of those? If, you know, preparing for... it's not, right?

00:32:19   There's no reason to say that editorial is going away, there's no reason to say it won't get an update,

00:32:23   but what this has highlighted is a potential hole in your system, a little chink in your armor, you may say.

00:32:29   What is the backup there for you, or say for example Apple pulled this app from the App Store.

00:32:35   What would you do?

00:32:37   So what I can do is, if really there's no alternative to editorial on iOS,

00:32:44   My more advanced actions are basically all based on Python, so I can take the Python code,

00:32:51   replace some of the visual actions with more Python code, and I can use the code in Pythonista.

00:32:59   If also there's a problem with Pythonista, maybe it goes away, disappears, or Apple removes it,

00:33:05   I can take the Python code and use it on my Mac. So if there's no option,

00:33:11   Python code is open to everyone. I can still use that in some form on some machine. So, you know,

00:33:18   the worst case scenario is I end up with a bunch of Python and I need to run it on my Mac.

00:33:27   But, you know, I don't think that's gonna happen.

00:33:30   Have you ever thought about having somebody build something for you?

00:33:34   Yes. I considered the option a few years ago, just make these apps for me.

00:33:41   Maybe I will consider it again in the future.

00:33:45   Because I was thinking about this just before editorial came out, basically three years ago, when I was recovering from treatments.

00:33:53   I was like, maybe now I should just consider making apps for me that I can use, that I can pay to keep them updated all the time.

00:34:02   Then the editorial came around and I started playing with editorial and then Workflow and all these other apps.

00:34:10   But now it's been in the back of my mind again to kind of say, "Maybe if someone was making this app, like an internal app just for me,

00:34:19   maybe I could have the craziest features available exactly the way that I want them."

00:34:25   I don't know, Myke. It's something that I think about every once in a while and lately more often,

00:34:32   but I don't think it's happening anytime soon.

00:34:35   So there was one piece that I wanted to read, a little quote, which was from the article that you wrote,

00:34:43   which of course is in our show notes, and it goes like this.

00:34:45   "By being able to use OneWriter alongside other apps with split view on iOS 9,

00:34:49   and finding myself depending on fewer workflows, using two apps at the same time

00:34:53   time has enabled me to cut down the number of steps required to reduce time

00:34:57   spent editing, researching material, or publishing articles to WordPress. Now

00:35:02   when I read this I had like a flashback to your iOS 8 review where you spoke

00:35:09   about how you were using URL schemes less and less because Apple were

00:35:13   building in tools to reduce that requirement. Oh yeah, oh yeah. And it

00:35:18   Reminded me a lot of that. So it's like the same kind of idea that this is a

00:35:23   Display to me that contrary to what many people may say or believe including us at times

00:35:30   the iOS is growing and becoming more powerful. Yeah, and

00:35:34   Some of the crazy stuff that Federico Vitech has done over the years is now kind of being implemented in Apple's way

00:35:43   Yeah, actually that's great, you know, follow up Myke, I had forgotten about that.

00:35:49   I'm still using URL schemes, you know, just today for example in the OneWriter

00:35:54   workflow communication, but that's maybe the only URL scheme I've used in like six months.

00:36:01   So definitely, I've seen especially, you know, starting last year with iOS 8 and extensions, I've seen myself

00:36:09   Coming from this perspective of,

00:36:13   I've been relying on these crazy workarounds for many years to

00:36:19   speed up the time that I spend in those apps,

00:36:24   and now I'm using these system features.

00:36:27   It's happening again this year with multitasking and split view.

00:36:32   I'm like, if I'm looking at two apps at the same time,

00:36:35   is there really anything to automate anymore?

00:36:38   because I can just move the data with these two apps that are available to me at the same time.

00:36:45   And definitely I've been noticing moving from trying to trick the system into using the system

00:36:56   in a way. I'm not employing so many workarounds anymore. In fact, I think I'm using native

00:37:05   features more and more in combination with standalone apps.

00:37:10   So it's not like I'm using URL schemes and bookmarklets to move from app to app because

00:37:16   that's kind of an option.

00:37:19   I'm using Split View, I'm using the shortcut bar, I'm using extensions.

00:37:24   Then if developers take advantage of these features to build crazy apps such as Workflow

00:37:29   or Japs or Runwriter, that's even better.

00:37:33   But the key aspect here is iOS has improved and for people who get work done like me,

00:37:38   and this is not just about blogging or writing reviews, this extends to many other aspects

00:37:45   of working and doing these productive tasks on iOS.

00:37:52   The system is now capable enough and there is a parallel maybe to last year, Myke, so

00:37:59   I'll give you credit.

00:38:02   good follow-up. This isn't the only thing that you've been playing around with

00:38:06   this week. It's been like Federico workflow week. So we have a couple of

00:38:11   other little interesting things to talk about but before that let's take a break

00:38:15   to thank Fracture for sponsoring this week's episode of Connected. Fracture is

00:38:20   the company that will take your favorite images and print them directly onto a

00:38:23   lovely sheet of glass for you to proudly display or give us gifts. Fracture prints

00:38:28   really are something special. As we said before, we love what Fracture make. I have

00:38:34   a bunch of Fractures, we all have Fractures, and the reason is because they

00:38:36   do look so fantastic. It's also great working with this company, they're so

00:38:40   passionate about what they do. They love it when they get the opportunity to

00:38:44   print people's important moments, you know, the things that they care about or

00:38:48   achievements and accomplishments that they've made, onto these glass prints. You

00:38:52   know, they love that and we love being able to talk about what they do. I have

00:38:55   so many Fracture prints like in our home of podcast artwork and I'm looking

00:39:01   forward to getting some more real soon because it's one of those things like

00:39:04   Fractures are just I don't know it's just such a beautiful little thing to

00:39:07   have it takes these images that we have in our photo rolls and in our streams or

00:39:12   our websites or you know in our computers allows us to put them and

00:39:16   display them proudly somewhere it really makes it a very different thing when you

00:39:20   kind of put a picture of your family on the wall rather than having it you know

00:39:24   in your photo stream. It's a way to rescue those photos and display them

00:39:29   proudly and Fracture is the best place to do that. They assemble them all by

00:39:33   hand in their factory in Gainesville Florida and I will mention again you

00:39:37   know we are not far away from the holiday season now if you want to make

00:39:40   sure that you try and get those in time for December if you're thinking about

00:39:43   buying some fractures for somebody as a gift or having them gifted to you by a

00:39:48   family member make sure that you go to fractureme.com and get started as soon

00:39:52   as possible because fracture their factory gets very very busy and rightly

00:39:57   so because their prints are so fantastic. So head on over to fractureme.com to

00:40:01   learn more and get started now you'll be able to pick from some great sizes you'll

00:40:04   be able to pick from hanging on the wall mounting them you can get a little

00:40:07   standard some of the smaller ones they have great square and rectangle sized

00:40:11   prints that they can do for you and if you use the code connected at checkout

00:40:15   you will not only get 15% off your first order you'll also help support this show

00:40:20   which of course is very important to you, I hope, as it's important to us that we can stick around.

00:40:24   Once again, huge thanks to Fracture for supporting Real AFM.

00:40:27   And don't forget, if you get some Fractures printed, I love to see pictures of them,

00:40:31   so feel free to tweet them to me. I like to see what people get printed out onto their Fractures.

00:40:34   So Federico, the Workflow app has also continued to be a big and important thing to you,

00:40:44   and there's also some new stuff that you wanted to talk about today.

00:40:47   Yeah, today the app was updated to include a new "Publish to WordPress" action, which is exactly

00:40:55   what I've been dreaming to have for basically forever on my iPad. So you can now send any text

00:41:04   or rich text or images to your WordPress blog or blogs because you can add multiple accounts,

00:41:11   both WordPress.com and self-hosted WordPress.org blogs.

00:41:17   The letter is what I use at Mac Stories.

00:41:19   You can send any text and you can pre-program any specific field, so you can set a title

00:41:27   or you can set categories or tags or slugs, excerpts, all the basic fields of a WordPress

00:41:34   item.

00:41:36   You can access in Workflow, you can put in some text, you can use variables, you can

00:41:41   and combine them with actions, and you can build workflows just for WordPress, which

00:41:47   is amazing.

00:41:48   And, again, I've been trying to do this for many, many years.

00:41:53   I remember back in 2010 or 2011, maybe, I got this link in the review today, I started

00:42:00   to use Blogsy, which used to be one of the first blog editors for the iPad.

00:42:07   got a really skeuomorphic interface back in the day. It was one of the first apps to bring the ideal of Mars Edit on iOS.

00:42:17   Was that the one with the rabbit?

00:42:19   The rabbit? No, it...

00:42:21   It had a little rabbit icon.

00:42:22   Oh yeah, maybe it had a rabbit.

00:42:24   Yeah, I think they had a little rabbit.

00:42:26   Like a black icon, maybe?

00:42:28   I don't know. I remember a cartoon... or maybe that was something else.

00:42:32   I remember there was an app that had a cartoon rabbit and it was like a Mars Edit type app.

00:42:39   This one is blogzapp.com, it's got a typewriter icon.

00:42:46   And I remember being fascinated by this idea.

00:42:49   I was coming from the background as a heavy Mac user.

00:42:58   I was looking at the iPad and the thought of being able to get work done on iOS was

00:43:04   starting to fascinate me. I saw this app and I remember Broxy was not perfect, he had many,

00:43:10   many issues. But it was the start of something new for me.

00:43:14   I remember this.

00:43:15   And through the years, I've been looking for... I've tried all of the WordPress capable apps

00:43:23   on iOS. Posts was another one. Poster was the one that became my favorite. It got acquired

00:43:32   by Automattic, the company, or how do you say, Automattic?

00:43:36   I just say Automattic. You can't pronounce those extra T's. You just can't do that.

00:43:43   It got acquired by the parent company of WordPress and it was my favorite. And then I moved to,

00:43:51   2013, I was so annoyed by, you know, there's no perfect WordPress client that does exactly

00:43:58   what I want, I'm just gonna make my own. And that's what I did. In the tutorial I was using

00:44:03   Python to access the XML RPC API, which is an API that lets you talk to your WordPress

00:44:11   blog. And I built, over the course of many, many weeks, I built the, basically what I

00:44:20   I thought was the perfect workflow for me. So with exactly the

00:44:26   precise sequence of steps that I want. So first it lets me confirm a title, then it

00:44:33   asks me for categories, then it lets me use tags, and then it finally publishes

00:44:38   the article to my website, and it takes me to the website to make sure

00:44:42   that everything looks okay. So for two years, Myke, I've been using this

00:44:49   workflow to publish content to Mac stories for both normal articles and linked items

00:44:57   when I link to someone else. I've been using this every single day for two years and it

00:45:03   was a very ugly code but it got the job done and it was practical.

00:45:08   Sometimes that's the way man, it doesn't need to be pretty, it just needs to work.

00:45:11   It wasn't pretty and it worked but many times it threw me an error because you know it wasn't

00:45:17   the perfect piece of script, because I didn't build any error-checking routine into the

00:45:23   code, so it just failed sometimes. And if I had too many tags on WordPress, it just

00:45:29   didn't work, so periodically I needed to go through my WordPress backend and clean up

00:45:34   some tags. You know, it wasn't perfect, but I've been using it to publish, you know, my

00:45:38   iPad review, my cancer story, all my important articles were published that way. Except the

00:45:46   the iPad review that I needed to paste into the website first and save as a draft and

00:45:54   very nervously confirm that the embargo time was up and that I could publish. I just didn't

00:46:00   trust Python for that. But everything else, 99% of my articles, all done with the ugly

00:46:06   Python code. So when the Workflow team approached me a few weeks ago, they were like "Hey, we

00:46:14   make a WordPress action. Can you give us some feedback?" I was ecstatic, it doesn't even

00:46:19   describe the kind of feeling. It's like the single aspect of your job gets drastically

00:46:29   improved overnight. It's like you need to transport something for a living and overnight

00:46:38   you go from very tiresome transportation to being in charge of a space rocket.

00:46:46   That was what I keep thinking about. It was such an improvement for me. And this action is amazing,

00:46:54   because I can combine it with anything. And it's not Python code, it's got an interface,

00:47:02   It's got menus that I can see and that I can customize.

00:47:06   And I can use it with any text editor.

00:47:09   Not just with one writer, which is what I'm doing now,

00:47:12   but I can use it in drafts if I want.

00:47:15   I can use it with notes if I want.

00:47:17   I can use it in editorial.

00:47:19   And this is the kind of freedom that using plain text, using Markdown,

00:47:23   and relying on the system, not on a single work-around,

00:47:27   or not on a single app, this is the kind of freedom that you get.

00:47:31   you have portability of your workflows. You can move from app to app, because the iOS

00:47:37   sharesheet is open to every app, and workflow, as long as you give it text, it's going to publish to

00:47:43   WordPress. And so I've been, all the articles that you've seen on Mac Stories for the past couple of

00:47:49   weeks, they're all being done with workflow on my iPad or the iPhone with this action, and it's so

00:47:58   So much better for me, Myke. I'm just so happy.

00:48:02   So what actually makes this different? Is it just making the step easier?

00:48:08   Is it still going through all the same processes that you went through?

00:48:10   So how is this publish to workflow action even working?

00:48:15   So it's the same steps. I provide some text, which is my article's text,

00:48:22   and I copy the file name of my txt file, which is what I used to write, to the iOS clipboard.

00:48:30   And the workflow applies title case, which is the kind of format that I like for my headlines,

00:48:37   lets me confirm the title, you know, if maybe I need to make sure the title case looks okay,

00:48:43   or if I want to make some last minute changes to the headline. And then it takes the text and

00:48:49   and it asks me, is this a normal article or is this a linked post?

00:48:53   If it's a linked post, I pick a link that I want to use as the actual web page that I'm linking to.

00:49:00   If it's not, it just goes straight to WordPress.

00:49:04   And in the WordPress section, what it does is, it uses the title that I provided as the article title.

00:49:11   I'm logged into my account, so it uses Federico Vittucci as the author.

00:49:16   It publishes now, so I don't have to take care of any timestamp, and it uses the plain text, the markdown, that I gave it.

00:49:24   Because on Mac stories we use Jetpack, which is a plugin from automatic that lets us

00:49:31   use markdown in our backend, and it looks like HTML to readers.

00:49:36   These are the three steps that I like. Of course, I didn't mention categories and tags.

00:49:44   It asks me for a title, asks me for taxonomy, so categories and tags, and it asks me for a linked or regular article.

00:49:56   I need to be able to manually confirm all of these parameters, and I need to be able to make that choice.

00:50:02   I don't want the computer to make that choice for me.

00:50:05   And after that, it just goes to WordPress. I don't have to do any copy and paste, I don't have to use the WordPress app,

00:50:12   I don't need to manually confirm, yes, this is me,

00:50:17   or yes, I want to publish now.

00:50:19   It just does everything automatically.

00:50:21   And it takes me to Safari, to maxstories.net,

00:50:24   automatically at the end of the process,

00:50:26   so I can confirm that the new post is indeed

00:50:29   at the top of the website,

00:50:30   and I can go back to work on something else.

00:50:33   - So I guess the benefit for you then

00:50:34   is now that you're able to do this from wherever you are,

00:50:37   like in theory, you could publish to WordPress

00:50:41   from the Notes app?

00:50:42   Yes. And not only is it available anywhere, it's much, much faster and more reliable than

00:50:51   my ugly Python code. It can fetch hundreds of tags with no problem. It can give me communicate

00:50:59   errors if something happens instead of just failing. And it's a much better interface

00:51:05   for WordPress because it's all done natively with iOS APIs instead of being

00:51:11   you know Python work around in an editorial. It's available anywhere and

00:51:16   it's faster and I trust it more than my very poor coding skills.

00:51:24   So this is like just another example of the workflow app continuing to grow like they have

00:51:29   really put a lot of work into this over time and it seems to be getting more and

00:51:32   more powerful for people?

00:51:34   Yeah, these guys are just insane.

00:51:38   I see a lot of potential for Workflow going forward to expand to many different services.

00:51:48   And the idea of WordPress, it's not completely done yet.

00:51:56   For instance, you cannot update an existing article, you can only publish a new one.

00:52:02   And you gotta believe that eventually you will get a more complete suite of WordPress actions.

00:52:07   But, you know, this idea of... Workflow started as kind of an automator for iOS.

00:52:14   Because, you know, the interface and the idea of drag and drop and system integrations,

00:52:19   but now it's become much more than that, because it's perfectly and easily integrated with apps,

00:52:25   and it communicates with all these different web services.

00:52:29   It's much more than what Apple is doing with Automate on OS X, which is kind of forgotten anyway.

00:52:34   This is a modern take, and a fresh one also, on automation on iOS, communication between apps,

00:52:42   and integrating with all these different attach points.

00:52:47   So you can have an action extension, you can have a "Today" widget,

00:52:51   You can run the app normally, or you can put a shortcut on your home screen.

00:52:57   You can use 3D Touch.

00:52:59   So it's this sort of automation layer spread across all of these different iOS features,

00:53:04   and you can use it in any kind of app that you want.

00:53:08   And it's this kind of freedom and portability that makes me feel much, much better

00:53:15   about automating in workflow rather than being constrained inside a single app

00:53:20   and then wondering what's gonna happen. You can make the same argument. What

00:53:24   happens if workflow goes away? Well then I go back to programming anyway.

00:53:30   Yeah, because that was why I wanted to talk about this as well, because it's interesting to

00:53:33   see how the workflow app is continuing to be really really actively developed.

00:53:38   And I'm trying not to cast aspersions on the editorial,

00:53:45   whatever, they're just different. Where it seems like editorial was

00:53:49   receiving work but at a slower pace and workflow from what I can understand

00:53:53   there is a team of people that work on this app. I'm interested to know,

00:53:57   like I don't know if you know, the workflow developers, do they do this

00:54:02   for a living? Yeah. Okay, but this isn't all they do though, right?

00:54:06   They have like an app called Desk Connect or something as well? Yeah, but

00:54:10   they're really focused on workflow I think. So that is, you know, it seems to be

00:54:13   doing very well for them. I wish, you know, as with always these apps, I wish

00:54:16   they would do something more that I could pay for again because you worry

00:54:21   about these things going away. And workflow is like, you know, like with many

00:54:25   of these things I use it very very lightly and I really wish that I used it

00:54:29   more but it's for me it's interesting that like a couple of weeks ago I was

00:54:35   talking to Brad at the pen addict and I wanted him to make a gif of something

00:54:40   like you know it's just a way that a specific pen action moved and he was

00:54:43   gonna put it on his site and I was like you should make a gif and he was like

00:54:46   how should I do that? And I opened up the App Store to start searching for like an

00:54:50   app to turn a video into a GIF and I was like no hang on a minute and then I just

00:54:54   opened Workflow and built it for him. And I was like that feels good.

00:54:59   Because I know how to use that app it's so simple for me to use and I

00:55:04   every now and then I just have to remind myself like that is just something I can

00:55:08   go into and I'm able to build and chain together some basic things. Like it was

00:55:12   the same as the other day somebody sent me a Dropbox link of an mp3 file on iOS

00:55:18   I was on iOS and like it's so frustrating that sometimes Dropbox links

00:55:21   on iOS they just give you a player like you can't download them to your Dropbox

00:55:26   right and it's like why does this do this so I opened workflow I threw the

00:55:30   mp3 file in there and it uploaded to my Dropbox right like I built that to do

00:55:34   that you know like take this mp3 file extract it upload it to Dropbox job done

00:55:38   So it is extremely powerful and for me it's like this stuff exists on the Mac

00:55:45   but I don't know how to do it right it's more complicated. Like

00:55:49   Automator is way more complicated for me than what it is. Yes it is Myke.

00:55:55   So it's really interesting that I can do this stuff more powerfully on iOS. Me, you

00:56:01   know I'm sure other people can do it way easier on the Mac than I can on iOS but

00:56:04   there's this tool out there that I can use for this stuff and it's really

00:56:08   cool and I'm very happy that it exists and it's cool that it's getting continually updated and

00:56:13   more powerful over time. That's what some people don't understand when they say "oh yeah look at

00:56:20   the iPad now you're so cute you can make workflows to download files" well you know we've been doing

00:56:26   that on the Mac for 20 years. That's true but these people are maybe missing the point that

00:56:35   there's a sense of feeling, you know, free in a way, when you're able to... maybe you're

00:56:42   in a rush, or you're talking to a friend and you gotta make a gif, or you gotta download

00:56:47   a file, and you can do that wherever you are, on a phone, and you can use a 3G connection

00:56:54   to work with the web, and you don't have to sit down at a desk and no programming, you

00:56:59   can just drag and drop actions. And I can do it. My mom can do it, because I tried.

00:57:05   A kid in China can do it, because it's available on the App Store. And it's this utility that

00:57:15   has many, many possibilities. And I get the argument about, you know, you can do this

00:57:22   on a Mac. But there's a feeling of, in a way, liberation in being able to do that on a mobile

00:57:28   device. I truly believe that even if these apps go away, even if editorial

00:57:36   eventually disappears, or Workflow, or you know, JAR or Pythonista, automation

00:57:42   always finds a way. We've been here before. When there were no

00:57:48   apps, we used URL schemes and JavaScript and bookmarks. It wasn't as good

00:57:54   as it is today, but it got the job done, you know, for many people. And I believe that,

00:58:01   you know, if things change, if Apple changes their mind, I don't think so, I think it'll

00:58:06   only get better from here. But we can go back, we can figure out something else, and, you

00:58:13   know, people who need to get work done on a computer, those who care about it tend to

00:58:20   find a way to do it faster or more efficiently. So I'm really an optimist at heart, Myke,

00:58:27   and I believe we'll always find a way. But what you mentioned about helping friends put

00:58:35   together workflows, if you allow me here, I wanted to mention that I'm doing something

00:58:41   similar for Collab Maxories members starting this week. There's going to be a workflow

00:58:47   Corner in Maxories Weekly. People can ask me, because this always happens on Twitter via email,

00:58:54   so members can ask me ideas for workflows or questions for inspiration for "How can I do

00:59:01   this? Do you have any recommendation?" And I thought it was fun to put together a mix of

00:59:06   the teach-a-tip and the weekly Q&A session. It's kind of like that. It's a combination of the two.

00:59:13   It's gonna be fun. I got a few requests already to make workflows for other people to respond to questions.

00:59:20   That's what I'm gonna do. It's gonna be fun.

00:59:22   So it's gonna be available in issue 10, already 10 issues, crazy, of MaxAris Weekly.

00:59:28   It's gonna be sent later this Friday,

00:59:31   and actually more like Saturday morning, because you know, Myke, I'm gonna celebrate Thanksgiving this year.

00:59:38   Oh, yeah?

00:59:39   Yes, I am, finally. My dream is coming true.

00:59:42   One of Silvia's teachers is from the US, is now living in America, and the entire dance school is

00:59:49   throwing a Thanksgiving dinner to celebrate with the teacher and all of the students and, you know,

00:59:54   boyfriends and girlfriends. That's gonna be amazing. Yeah, that's gonna be so nice. It's gonna be like 30 people. It's gonna be crazy.

01:00:01   So where can people sign up for Club Max Stories Federico?

01:00:06   clap.maccstories.net and you can find all the options there.

01:00:10   And that's where you can get some artisanally crafted work clothes from Federica Vitigi.

01:00:15   Yes, directly from the source. That's what's going on here, Myke.

01:00:20   Okay Federica, I have an Apple Pencil now and I want to talk about it a little bit and talk about the fact that I wrote a review for it.

01:00:27   I think that might be a little fun to explore, but before I do that let me just thank Squarespace for helping support this week's episode as well.

01:00:34   You can start building your own website today at squarespace.com and you want to use the offer code world at checkout

01:00:39   That will get you 10% off

01:00:41   Squarespace build it beautiful when it comes to finding a place for yourself on the internet

01:00:45   Squarespace is somewhere that you should be checking out

01:00:47   They give you all of the power that you need to build a website just as you like and they take away all the stuff

01:00:52   That you usually have to worry about and fight through you know, like stuff like where's your hosting gonna come from?

01:00:57   How are you gonna cash this thing in case it gets popular? What about scaling?

01:01:00   What if you get stuck with something? If you don't have a service like Squarespace, you're going to be lost with a lot of this stuff.

01:01:05   They give you all of the tools that you need and back it up with fantastic 24/7 support as well.

01:01:11   Squarespace have state-of-the-art technology that they use to power all their sites. They ensure security and stability.

01:01:17   They're trusted by millions of people around the world and some of their tools are just fantastic.

01:01:22   Like their templates are so beautiful and they all feature really powerful stuff like responsive design.

01:01:26   You can drag and drop things around and it's gonna look great on all platforms. You can very easily customize your Squarespace website

01:01:33   It's good for anything as well. Maybe you want to set up a store. They have commerce functionality

01:01:37   Maybe you have a portfolio that you want to set up. They have great galleries to do that

01:01:41   They have really great themes and tools for restaurants and for bands

01:01:44   They have like music players and maps integration

01:01:47   Squarespace have everything and it's not just for people that don't know how to do these types of things

01:01:52   It's also for people that just don't want to have to worry about setting up everything

01:01:56   from scratch.

01:01:58   And if you are the type of person that does know how to do these types of stuff, maybe

01:02:01   you just want to go in and customize some things.

01:02:03   Squarespace have their dev platform, so you get all of the power of Squarespace and all

01:02:07   of the great features, but you're still able to go in and make some tweaks here and there

01:02:11   to just make it just exactly how you want.

01:02:13   Like you have that particular little thing that you want to do and you can make that

01:02:15   happen.

01:02:17   So if you want to sign up for Squarespace, their plans start at just $8 a month and you're

01:02:21   gonna love it and if you sign up for a year you also get a free domain name as

01:02:25   well you can start a free trial today with no credit card required and start

01:02:28   building your own website immediately by going to squarespace.com so you can just

01:02:32   go and try it out and then when you decide to sign up make sure that you use

01:02:35   the offer code world check out you'll get 10% off your first purchase and show

01:02:39   your support for this show thank you so much to Squarespace for supporting

01:02:42   relay FM Squarespace build it beautiful so I finally have an Apple pencil here

01:02:49   hang on a second there we go that's the apple pencil. Just to prove that I

01:02:55   have it I mean only the Apple pencil could make that sound of course I would

01:03:00   like to just reiterate that Apple need to get their stuff together I had this

01:03:05   this pencil came to me via Marco Arment from New York City. Wow. Yeah this is the

01:03:12   only way they're still not in London I I cannot find them I've still been

01:03:17   checking in with people and the Apple Store reps and it still seems like

01:03:20   they're just not coming into the store. There might be some in certain places

01:03:25   but they're not readily available. But Marco was able to get his hands on a

01:03:29   couple of them and he very very kindly FedExed it to me and I've had it for

01:03:35   about maybe four or five days something like that maybe a little bit longer

01:03:39   close to a week now. And this was a product that I felt so strongly about

01:03:45   that I wrote a review of it which is a very rare thing for me to do. A review

01:03:51   with text? Actual written word. Wow okay. And I published this, well I gave this to

01:03:59   Brad Dowdy of the pen addict to publish it because the pen addict felt like a

01:04:02   really great avenue, a real great venue for me to express my thoughts about this

01:04:07   because the way that I was coming to this and my feelings about the Apple

01:04:11   Pencil is how is this as a handwriting tool? Because I do the

01:04:16   Pen Addict podcast with Brad every week and we're very closely connected on this

01:04:20   stuff and it felt to me like this was where it would go. Because I put a

01:04:27   link in the post to an episode, episode 11 of The Pen Addict, where we spoke

01:04:33   about digital tools like styluses and stuff like that and how we felt about

01:04:36   them and in that episode we were talking about how we both really kind of would

01:04:41   like the idea of being able to take real handwritten notes on the iPad. This

01:04:45   episode was published on April 24 2012. So this is something I've wanted for a

01:04:52   long time. And the Apple Pencil delivers. That's my overall

01:04:57   feeling about this. I can take the iPad and the Apple Pencil, the iPad Pro and

01:05:04   the Apple Pencil, and I can write on it. I can use it and I can write a

01:05:07   sentence. If I take a piece of paper and a pen and write on that piece of paper,

01:05:11   and I compare the two of them, they look the same. And that was what it always

01:05:15   was. That was always the problem, is that previous styluses and previous apps, you

01:05:19   would have to write in a very exaggerated way, right? You couldn't be

01:05:23   precise about this stuff, at least in a way that made me happy. It was easier to

01:05:28   be more precise with drawing tools, but handwriting is very, very precise

01:05:33   movement required to correctly handwrite. Because you're writing very small and

01:05:38   you're making very small and subtle movements but they make a massive

01:05:41   difference and I have not found any product that has been able to do this

01:05:46   before but the Apple Pencil 100% delivers on that and I really really

01:05:51   couldn't be happier with this as a handwriting input tool.

01:05:56   It was fascinating to read your review Myke, you sent me a copy before you

01:06:02   published it. And you very kindly corrected my grammar.

01:06:06   I got a script for that, Myke. But I also read it, and it was really a good one.

01:06:12   And I think that you bring a unique perspective that a lot of people, including me, don't have.

01:06:18   Because personally I don't use physical pens anymore.

01:06:21   So I think it was a great idea to publish it on the Pen Addict.

01:06:26   But I wanted to ask you about writing your review.

01:06:29   Does this come from maybe a dissatisfaction with the launch reviews and the fact that

01:06:35   no one, including me, focused on the kind of aspects that you wanted to cover or to

01:06:40   know more about?

01:06:41   The problem was twofold.

01:06:45   Well, actually, let's say threefold.

01:06:49   Increase the folds.

01:06:50   One, I was dissatisfied, right?

01:06:52   Because nobody wrote about this from a handwriting perspective.

01:06:57   nobody did that. Two, I didn't really feel like anybody cares about it the way that

01:07:05   I do and I didn't trust anybody else's opinion when I was asking them for how

01:07:11   it was handwriting because nobody could, including yourself as much as I love you,

01:07:16   could really give me an answer that I trusted. Because nobody really

01:07:21   cares about this stuff like I do. I was dissatisfied. Just simply because

01:07:26   there is just no one that, well there are, but you know, of the people that

01:07:30   have got these things to review, everybody's talking about these things, how

01:07:34   it is to draw, how the movement is, and they would say "oh yeah you can write" but

01:07:38   it's like no, there are so many specific things about this that need to be right

01:07:44   for me and one of the ones that I really focus on in the review is the weight.

01:07:48   Now this is something that is so important in these types of tools and

01:07:53   is very often just forgotten about but to people like me who care about these

01:07:58   types of implements, you know I love pens and I love pencils, the weighting of

01:08:02   these products is so important and the thing is like what Apple did was they

01:08:08   put they put weights in this, I believe to serve two purposes. One is to stop the

01:08:13   pencil from rolling away easily, the other is they are magnetic, right, so you

01:08:18   you can lightly attach the pencil to the edge of the iPad.

01:08:23   It is not a storing device, it is merely, I think,

01:08:26   to just place it down while you type or something like that,

01:08:29   which is great that it does that.

01:08:30   But the way they have done this is key to me,

01:08:33   that there is a weight that goes

01:08:35   the whole way across the pencil.

01:08:37   And it feels like the inside is solid to a point.

01:08:43   And the reason that this is important

01:08:46   is that when you hold it, it is balanced.

01:08:48   It's not too heavy on one end or the other.

01:08:51   That can be killer to a pen.

01:08:54   Right, if it's too heavy,

01:08:55   'cause there's a lot of stuff, like a fountain pen,

01:08:57   all of the, I'll say mechanism, just to make it easy,

01:09:01   all of the stuff like is right at the bottom,

01:09:03   right at the edge of the pen, right?

01:09:04   You got the nib there, you have what's called the feed,

01:09:06   which delivers the ink to the nib, the cartridge,

01:09:09   and everything is right at the front of the pen,

01:09:12   you'd say like close to the nib.

01:09:13   So to make a great pen, in a lot of instances,

01:09:16   There has to be some some weighting that goes on the at the back of it or you need to make it shorter

01:09:20   So it's more balanced, but because the Apple Pen is pencil is so large

01:09:24   Right. It's very large in size which further kind of

01:09:29   Enforces why they went with pencil name rather than pen

01:09:34   They've done good work in making sure that the entire thing is well balanced

01:09:39   And when you hold it in your hand

01:09:40   It is a substantial thing which is also important because that adds a level of this is a quality product

01:09:47   But it also just kind of it helps you control the pencil when you're making fine movement

01:09:52   This is a I mean this is kind of like, you know, and the reason I wanted to write this is

01:09:58   The iPad Pro so people look at the iPad Pro and they're like that is the Federico Vittucci product

01:10:06   Mm-hmm. Right? That is for you. The Apple Pencil is mine. This is my product.

01:10:12   I'm flattered, Myke, but I agree. I agree. It's definitely your kind of accessory, you know, it's just for you.

01:10:20   And it's so different to have you write instead of, you know, podcasts.

01:10:29   And I keep saying this, you should do more of this, Myke. And now I want to say publicly,

01:10:35   I feel like there are certain things that you're really good at writing about.

01:10:42   Can you describe the process for you to write a review?

01:10:46   How many drafts did you make?

01:10:48   Did you go back and forth with a version of the review or another version?

01:10:53   What's your writing process, Myke?

01:10:55   Did you use the pencil to handwrite the review?

01:10:58   So this is the thing, right, is that I'm not an amazing writer, but I'm not a bad one.

01:11:07   I feel like I can do stuff.

01:11:10   No one is criticising my ability to write when they're reading this piece, which makes

01:11:16   me feel good, right?

01:11:17   It's like, great, no one's saying, "Dude, what are you even doing?

01:11:20   You don't even make any sense."

01:11:22   And a lot of this comes from, you know, and many people that I know that write do this,

01:11:25   like I shared it with some friends and they corrected some things and highlighted some

01:11:28   things for me, which is part of everybody's process I think. Because a lot of my friends

01:11:33   are writers and I see lots of drafts, right? Like, just on a daily basis things just come

01:11:37   away like, "Hey, what do you think of this?" It is a normal thing, right? But for me, the

01:11:43   process of writing is not something that I specifically enjoy in the same way that you

01:11:48   do, or Stephen does, or Jason does, right? Like, that is not a thing that I really love

01:11:53   to do unless I have a really good reason. So like when the Apple Pencil was coming

01:12:00   to me I was like it might be fun to write about this so I just had it in my

01:12:03   mind and then after I started using it for a couple of days I was like no I

01:12:07   have to. Like this is the thing this is a thing I want to write about because I

01:12:12   want to increase the amount of people that could see my opinion on this. So I'll

01:12:16   talk about it on the show it's like this is the third show this week where I'm

01:12:20   talking about the Apple Pencil right and you know I believe that there is benefit

01:12:25   to listening to all of them because I purposely talk about different things in

01:12:28   each show but like I can talk about this until the cows come home I talk about it

01:12:33   forever but I want to make sure that a lot of people see it and from from what

01:12:37   Brad has told me a lot of people have seen yeah I seen the link everywhere

01:12:41   Myke good job which makes me feel good as well but like so to go back to my

01:12:45   process the first thing for me is I have to have a really good reason to start

01:12:49   writing because I just don't enjoy it Federico. With the podcast thing it's

01:12:55   so easy I can just talk. I just talk and people just follow me as I'm

01:12:59   talking but with writing you've got to have like a real real heavy structure

01:13:03   right the structure has to be a lot more rigid you have to really think about it

01:13:07   in a different way. Like right now I just stumbled over my words a little bit but

01:13:12   that's totally fine like in the podcast people don't care about it they do in

01:13:16   the writings. You have to be more considerate about it. It's just not my

01:13:19   approach for getting my opinions and thoughts out there on a usual

01:13:22   day-to-day basis. So I struggle with it a little bit and it takes me some

01:13:28   time. So the only way that I ever really write is when I have something that

01:13:32   pushes me so much that it takes away the slog of it because it's something I

01:13:36   really want to do. And I wrote this piece over two sessions of maybe

01:13:44   an hour or so each and then just making some corrections after sending it to a

01:13:51   couple of people. So it was probably maybe like three hours, two, three hours

01:13:56   work because I was so pumped up to do it that I really just kind of just went

01:14:02   with it. Because you know how we were talking about this a couple of weeks ago

01:14:05   about when you just have that hook and then once you get the hook it just flows

01:14:11   out of you. It happened to me as well. I knew what I was writing, right? And it

01:14:16   was a simple hook. It was just like, compare this thing to the pens you use

01:14:19   every day. And once that hit me, I just went for it. And one of the big

01:14:24   parts for me was when I was talking about the weight of the device and the

01:14:27   fact that it rolls, right? Like Apple have tried to implement the weights to stop

01:14:32   it from rolling, but if you drop the pencil or like from like a height or

01:14:36   if you give it any kind of speed or momentum, people don't like it when I

01:14:40   talk about momentum. It can actually, the weights inside of it propel it forward

01:14:46   in a way that you don't want because as it rolls over and over and over again it

01:14:51   speeds up because it's got weight in it. And I was comparing that to Mark Newsom

01:14:57   who works for Apple now designed a pen for Mont Blanc and his Mont Blanc pen

01:15:01   was a cylindrical pen but the cap had a clip on it. And it was just interesting

01:15:06   to me to be like I really wish that they would have put a clip on this thing. But

01:15:10   But that is like a little thing that only I know because I care.

01:15:15   Did you know that Marc Newsome designed a Mont Blanc fountain pen?

01:15:18   No.

01:15:19   No, but I do.

01:15:20   And I think that that's interesting because he works for Apple's design team.

01:15:24   So I expect he had a hand in this.

01:15:26   So he might be the reason why there's weights in this thing in the first place.

01:15:31   They didn't want to put a clip on it, but he was like, "But this thing's going to roll

01:15:33   off the desk."

01:15:34   You never know, but I find that sort of stuff interesting.

01:15:36   It's like I found my hook and I started the writing process and I wrote the whole thing

01:15:40   on my iPad Pro on the software keyboard in Byword, and I had the Notes app pinned to

01:15:45   the side because I do have a lot of stuff now.

01:15:48   When I get a new thing, whether it's a video game because we're talking about it on the

01:15:51   show or I get a new app that I really like that is important or I get a new hardware

01:15:57   device, I immediately open the Notes app, start a new heading, and just start taking

01:16:00   notes.

01:16:01   I talk about what I think about the hardware, what I think about software integration.

01:16:05   I take little notes of interesting things that come up.

01:16:08   I do that now, which is kind of cool.

01:16:09   I think that's probably what a lot of people like yourself do as well. I mean I

01:16:12   do that for the shows but it was the same for the pencil like I just have a

01:16:16   notes document that just has a bunch of different tidbits and thoughts and I use

01:16:20   that as a way to help structure the the review that I wrote. Is there anything

01:16:25   that you feel you didn't say or maybe that you didn't say quite right in the

01:16:31   review and if you could go back you would say differently or maybe explain

01:16:35   more? I don't think that I focused enough or gave enough detail about the

01:16:42   apps that I was using. So like you know I spoke about a couple of

01:16:47   different apps that I'd used like Notability and GoodNotes and there are

01:16:52   some more out there like for actual handwriting like OneNote for example

01:16:56   which I didn't really test and that was just a matter of timing. I wanted to get

01:17:01   this thing out as soon as possible because you know the products been

01:17:05   out for a couple of weeks now, so the timing is getting older and older for this review

01:17:10   to be relevant.

01:17:11   Yeah, it happens to me as well, when you have an idea or maybe a specific angle on a story

01:17:19   and you feel like "I need to get this out as soon as possible because other people maybe

01:17:23   are gonna do the same".

01:17:24   And there's an argument to be made about if you're unique enough, if you are differentiated

01:17:30   enough, maybe people are still gonna care about you, but if you want to put an

01:17:35   article in front of as many people as possible, having it be unique and new

01:17:40   you know, helps a lot. And I've seen, you know, a lot of people refer to your

01:17:44   review as "the pen guy uses the pencil" and that's a unique angle that's

01:17:50   that's like, you know, it catches the attention, you know, it's got a specific

01:17:55   twist to it and you were definitely right in saying "I want to get this out

01:18:00   as soon as possible so maybe I will skip some sections for the greater good basically.

01:18:06   There's nothing to say that at some point, I mean I don't have a specific desire to do

01:18:11   this right now, but I might follow up with more thoughts about the note taking apps.

01:18:19   As more come on the market and more get updated to support the Pencil, because that's something

01:18:24   that I'm going to keep playing with, so potentially in the future I might look at that again.

01:18:28   But yeah, that's the one thing is I wished I kind of spent more time with third-party stuff.

01:18:33   I spoke a lot about the sketching tools in the Notes app because they are the best right now.

01:18:37   But it's not the best app for handwriting. Like for example, OneNote does OCR of what you write

01:18:43   into it. Right? And so I think that into the future that's going to be amazing. But right now,

01:18:48   they don't have any specific support for the pencil. Right? They just don't have that.

01:18:56   OneNote? I think they do actually.

01:19:00   No, in the app. I'm gonna open it right now.

01:19:04   Word does, but this doesn't.

01:19:08   So you can click on Draw.

01:19:12   What's the difference?

01:19:13   Well, so you click on Draw and you click Stylus and you have two options.

01:19:17   Pencil by 53 or Other.

01:19:21   And then it's like, how do you hold a pen?

01:19:23   like they're trying to do their own palm rejection stuff. So it works but it's not complete I don't think.

01:19:34   And it's different in Word?

01:19:36   I haven't used Word for it in all honesty.

01:19:40   Who does?

01:19:42   Apparently a lot of people do.

01:19:45   It seems to me right now that they are not using all of the tools that are available.

01:19:54   I see. I've been playing with OneNote, you know.

01:19:59   For features like the shared notebooks, there's still...

01:20:03   The stuff that I keep in Evernote, OCR, I'm not sure I can do that in Notes.

01:20:09   Do you know if you can do OCR in Notes? I don't think you can.

01:20:12   in the Notes app? Yeah. No. I think if you send, maybe, I think I remember from my

01:20:18   review, if you send a PDF that's already been OCR'd, you can search for the

01:20:26   text inside the PDF, but definitely you cannot do that for images or handwriting,

01:20:32   I think. Yeah, maybe. I could be wrong about the PDFs, by the way. That's just

01:20:39   what I remember. So I'm also playing around with OneNote. It's a pretty

01:20:42   cool app. It's got quite a few differences from Evernote, but it's cool.

01:20:46   One of the things for me about OneNote is though it doesn't look like an iPad app.

01:20:51   Yeah, it looks like a PC app. The ribbon toolbar at the top,

01:20:57   it's very Microsoft-y. So I wanted to ask you to conclude this.

01:21:04   Microsoft say on their blog that they do support the Apple Pencil with OneNote,

01:21:10   but I don't know it feels a little bit weird to me maybe I need to try it out

01:21:16   more maybe I've just not given it a good enough shake maybe it's one of those

01:21:19   early support and there's going to be more features that's kind of how it

01:21:23   feels so I mean I don't know I haven't given it a fair shake and I probably

01:21:29   should and I definitely will but it's just one that I haven't gotten around to

01:21:33   just yet because I don't know like I open one though and I'm like you just

01:21:37   look weird to me. Like, the app just looks kind of weird. It's like, "Hello, Microsoft!"

01:21:43   I don't know, it just looks like a PC app in an iPad.

01:21:46   Yeah, that's also what I feel like. I wanted to ask you, Myke, I assume you're going to

01:21:54   be continuing to use the Pencil on a daily basis now.

01:21:57   Yeah.

01:21:58   So how do you use it, like, in practice? What do you do?

01:22:02   So I have been taking notes on it, I like to do some doodles here and there, but one

01:22:07   of the other things is when I'm using my iPad now for like sitting down and doing some work

01:22:12   on it, I have the pencil in my hand and I use it to navigate iOS.

01:22:17   Really?

01:22:19   Yeah.

01:22:20   Like every day?

01:22:21   Yeah.

01:22:22   So you're using the iPad with a stylus?

01:22:26   It's a pen tablet.

01:22:27   It's a pen tablet.

01:22:28   It works really well.

01:22:30   And you're happy with it?

01:22:31   I love it.

01:22:32   So I will preface by saying that for my Mac I use a Wacom now.

01:22:38   So I use pen input on my Mac.

01:22:40   Yeah, I know, for the RSI stuff.

01:22:43   Yeah.

01:22:44   And also now I actually really like it.

01:22:47   But the precision that the Pencil gives in all applications is very beneficial.

01:22:53   Text selection is far superior with the Pencil than trying to do it with my finger.

01:22:58   I get the cursor where I want it to be, rather than like hitting it and then having to press

01:23:03   and hold and then drag it again.

01:23:06   And dragging the little blue bar thingamajigs is way easier with a pencil.

01:23:12   But more than that, I like scrolling lists with it.

01:23:16   I like just hitting small interface UI things with it.

01:23:20   It just works for me, man.

01:23:22   as a way to use this device it feels kind of natural to me. It's so big that

01:23:30   like having this like pointing device kind of it works like this is why stylus

01:23:36   exists styluses exist on these big devices in the first place like it's

01:23:40   just beneficial to have this other little thing that interacts with the with

01:23:45   the UI. I don't know, I really like it but I may be in a minority here but for

01:23:53   me it just really works as a way to interact with the device. I'm sure

01:23:58   that you do not do that.

01:24:00   No, no Myke. Do you feel like you could, you would like to be able to

01:24:05   attach the pencil magnetically to the iPad like as a

01:24:12   permanent placement for the stylus? No, magnetics is a bad permanent

01:24:18   placement because magnets fall off really easily, right? Like, you know,

01:24:24   if something is magnetically attached and I put it in my bag and the

01:24:28   pencil just snags on the edge of my bag the pencil gone forever, right? I want a case

01:24:33   that I can just slip it into. You want an iPad case with a pencil

01:24:37   holder. Yeah. Someone has to be making this much. Well I mean it would be very easy to

01:24:43   do. Like so for example say a smart case you know how you kind of fold the smart case up

01:24:49   and under? Yeah. Like one of those panels could have just a little slip thing that you

01:24:53   pop it into. Yeah, yeah I guess. You know on the outside so like say the middle panel

01:24:58   or whatever could have a little hole and you just slide the pencil into it because it would

01:25:01   never get in the way. Imagine a case that's also a keyboard and it's got a case

01:25:07   for the pencil. That would be killer. I mean people are making this stuff and I'm gonna

01:25:13   keep my eye out for it. But you know this is just a product that just makes sense to

01:25:19   me. These two things together, the iPad Pro and the pencil just make sense. It's such

01:25:24   a big device that it feels like I can manipulate it in different ways and use it in different

01:25:29   ways. Like for example we wanted to make a couple of changes to our website and we were

01:25:34   trying to explain to our designer and developer the way that we wanted it to

01:25:38   be done and we couldn't really explain it over the web so I took a screenshot

01:25:43   of the page, open paper by 53 and just drew on the page what I wanted to be

01:25:48   done. Yeah yeah that's very nice. Like that to me is like that is a device I

01:25:52   want to use and I wouldn't have been able to do that as easily with my finger.

01:25:56   Like I was able to draw little boxes right in the boxes what I wanted to be

01:25:59   in there and I sent it to them and everybody knew what I liked. Yeah that's

01:26:04   really nice. But that that type of stuff really works for me and it makes this it

01:26:10   makes the iPad Pro for me more pro. Like a keyboard does for somebody like you

01:26:16   and Jason, the pencil does for me. Because it just matches the way that I like to work.

01:26:22   One thing that I tried out Federico that I thought was pretty interesting was I

01:26:26   I downloaded SwiftKey and I was using their swipe keyboard.

01:26:31   So I had the pencil in my hand and I was just,

01:26:35   'cause if I'm holding the pencil like I was doing something

01:26:39   I was writing, I was drawing, I was taking some notes,

01:26:42   and I got a text message, and the pencil's already

01:26:44   in my hand, so I found myself doing this,

01:26:45   just tapping out a quick reply.

01:26:47   Just tap out, send.

01:26:50   And I thought SwiftKey would be way easier for this

01:26:52   'cause you just swipe it out like you're drawing,

01:26:53   and it was fantastic.

01:26:55   But the problem is, then I have a third party keyboard on iOS which is hell.

01:26:59   Which is just hell.

01:27:00   Terrible.

01:27:01   So it's like, I would really like to be able to do this, Apple.

01:27:04   You just need to get your stuff together about this one as well.

01:27:08   They should have like a feature that

01:27:10   when you're using the pencil and you get a text field,

01:27:13   instead of showing the keyboard, they show you like a little text area and you can

01:27:17   handwrite and it becomes text.

01:27:19   Yeah, I would like that.

01:27:22   I'm telling you man, this makes sense to me.

01:27:25   This year I have been upset with a lot of things that Apple have done.

01:27:30   They've had some really good stuff but they've had some real

01:27:37   misses in places. Some of their 1.0 stuff has been pretty shaky.

01:27:43   Like we had a lot of bad stuff to say about the Apple TV for example.

01:27:46   Yeah. The watch.

01:27:47   The watch, yeah. The watch had a bunch of things that were kind of weird.

01:27:52   This product to me is the best, it is the best singular 1.0 product that Apple have released this year.

01:27:58   It's fantastic. And the things that we thought were weird about it really make sense. Like the

01:28:05   way that you primarily charge this thing is super weird. It is awkward, you have this pencil sticking

01:28:11   out, it doesn't sit flush with the iPad connect like when you connect it. But when you're using

01:28:17   this device, that 15 second charge, 30 minutes of use, is genius.

01:28:22   Exactly, but let me ask you this, because I saw this comment. So in theory it looks weird, right?

01:28:28   But what would have been a better solution?

01:28:30   There isn't one. This is the best solution. This is genius. Because you're using the thing and it's like,

01:28:37   "Oh no, the battery's dying. Let me just plug it in for 15 seconds."

01:28:41   Yeah, exactly.

01:28:42   That is not an issue and then if you want to charge it for longer you have a

01:28:46   Specific reason you want to charge it to full like you could do a couple of things like I've done

01:28:52   I was watching a movie. I was gonna watch a video on my iPad

01:28:55   So I was like, oh so the iPads gonna be doing nothing for a bit the pencils

01:28:59   We've do nothing for a bit. Let me plug it in for half an hour and then it's like 80% battery

01:29:03   So that's great because I'm not touching it. Anyway, I mean, yeah, it's not elegant, but it's just doing its thing

01:29:08   But if I needed to I've got an adapter in the box. I can just plug it in with the adapter like

01:29:12   is inelegant

01:29:15   But it is I prefer this to having to plug a lightning port into this every time like a lightning

01:29:21   Connector into this every time I want to charge like if it had a female connector and I had to plug it in

01:29:26   Yeah, that would be frustrating to me if I had to do that every time

01:29:29   It may be inelegant, but it's practical and it works anywhere. So it's a trade-off, but it is a practical one

01:29:37   It is a crazy sensible way of charging this thing. It makes sense to me as a thing to do.

01:29:45   Because when pens run out of ink you have to fill them. And filling a fountain pen is messy.

01:29:51   And it is a to do. You know you have to get the bottle of ink, you have to get some tissue paper to dry up.

01:29:57   You know, and to blot out. You need some blotting paper so you can get the ink flowing again.

01:30:03   When you want to sharpen a pencil, like a real pencil, you have to make a mess.

01:30:07   and you're sticking this thing into a thing and you're sharpening it with a blade.

01:30:10   The parallel of this makes perfect sense to me. It is inelegant when you need to refill

01:30:16   this thing, but it's a short action and then you get back to work again.

01:30:20   So my girlfriend asked me an interesting question the other day. If Apple were to improve the pencil,

01:30:29   to improve the overall experience of using the pencil, new features, new something,

01:30:36   What do they need to do? Do they need to improve the Pencil? Do they need to improve iOS?

01:30:41   Do they need to change the iPad? And I didn't really have a single answer to that.

01:30:46   You are the pen guy. What do you think could be improved and how could be improved?

01:30:52   So I would like to see a way to store it.

01:30:56   Because I am going to lose this. It is inevitable.

01:31:01   And it's an expensive thing to lose. It's $100 to replace it.

01:31:06   Right? Yeah. A couple of things I would like to see. The cap on the end that covers the lightning

01:31:11   port is just dying to be lost. So I would like to see a retractable mechanism like a mechanical

01:31:18   pencil. So for example there could be a button on the side of this thing and you press it and the

01:31:23   lightning port pops out the top and there could be like a little trapdoor mechanism that keeps it

01:31:28   hidden and keeps dust out of it. This exists on some pens. I would recommend that people if they

01:31:33   wanted to take a look at what I'm imagining here. I'm going to put two pen links in the show notes,

01:31:38   one is called the vanishing point and one is called the Lami dialogue 3. So I'm going to put

01:31:47   two links in there. These are fountain pens that have mechanisms for retracting the nib and they

01:31:53   both deal with this in interesting ways. I would like to see something like that for the lightning

01:31:57   port so it is retracted in the pencil you press a button and it pops out so then you're not going

01:32:01   gonna lose that little cap because that's gonna be super frustrating when I

01:32:04   eventually lose that. I would like to see a clip on this or a flat edge so it

01:32:10   doesn't roll away by design rather than just by you know we've designed this

01:32:15   thing and then put weights in it. Like that was the way that they fixed the

01:32:18   problem rather than in my opinion rather than designing it from ground up that

01:32:23   way. They wanted a cylindrical thing which is very beautiful but I would like

01:32:27   to see a clip on this or just something that stops it from rolling away. I think

01:32:34   for some people this it's not very grippy. I think it's fine but it would

01:32:39   maybe be nice if an apple could do this elegantly to have a rubberized grip or

01:32:46   they could make this thing out of aluminium and they could have it knurled.

01:32:50   And if you don't know what knurling is I'm gonna put a link in the show notes

01:32:55   to a pen that Apple sell in their retail stores. So they worked with a company

01:33:02   called Retro 51, one of my favorite pen making companies, to have something

01:33:08   called the Hexamatic, which is a pen and pencil, and it has this grip on it which

01:33:13   is in aluminium which is called knurling. And it's like this, they basically put

01:33:18   like this grid in the aluminium which gives it a grip. And I would really love

01:33:22   to see an aluminium version of the pencil. So that's kind of my what I

01:33:27   wish for 2.0 but none of those things are desperately needed.

01:33:32   And all of those things are about hardware not software.

01:33:36   Which is interesting.

01:33:37   Oh the software is perfect.

01:33:38   Alright so what would I want? You want the obvious. I want this thing to be even more responsive.

01:33:44   Because it's not 100% one-to-one.

01:33:47   No, not yet.

01:33:49   But it will be.

01:33:51   we have to assume that it'll be eventually.

01:33:55   But that requires Apple to increase the refresh rate of the iPad Pro's display again.

01:34:02   So going from 240 FPS to 480 maybe, that's crazy.

01:34:11   But that requires a major change, basically another display technology.

01:34:18   Which I don't think could happen next year, I don't know.

01:34:22   No, I think we're a way away. I think what will happen is it will get incrementally better over time.

01:34:28   Uh-huh, yeah.

01:34:30   That's my feeling about this.

01:34:32   But you feel that the changes that you want to see in software besides accuracy and speed,

01:34:41   you feel like Apple for this 1.0 kind of nailed the experience?

01:34:46   They did a good enough job.

01:34:48   Mm-hmm.

01:34:50   Again, it is not perfect. I am still ahead of it.

01:34:55   Right? Like when I'm writing fast, I am ahead.

01:34:58   It is not completely keeping up with me.

01:35:01   But it is not so far wrong that it's a problem.

01:35:06   Does that make sense?

01:35:07   Yeah, totally. Yeah.

01:35:09   So, yeah, I am thrilled with this thing.

01:35:13   Nice. That's what I wanted to... I was really looking forward to your perspective, Myke.

01:35:19   And I feel like I want to see more from you on this going forward, you know?

01:35:24   Like, using the pencil as a pen. I assume there's going to be a whole new category of apps coming.

01:35:29   I hope so.

01:35:30   Yeah, I mean, it makes sense, right? People have done this for other Stylie on the iPad before,

01:35:40   now it makes sense to have special pencil features and apps coming now that it's built into the iPad.

01:35:47   One final question that I have for you.

01:35:51   If Apple were to make the pencil available on the iPad Air 3 next year, would you go back?

01:35:59   No, I love the iPad Pro. I love the format.

01:36:04   I had already decided I wanted to stick with the iPad Pro before I got the pencil.

01:36:09   And I feel like for this to be really useful, it needs to have a big screen so I have space to write out in full.

01:36:18   I don't know, let me pick up my iPad Air here and just see what it feels like.

01:36:23   It's gonna be fun.

01:36:25   I feel like I haven't got enough space to rest my hand and rest on it at the same time.

01:36:31   True.

01:36:32   Like, I'm resting my hand on it and I'm like halfway into the screen where on the iPad Pro

01:36:37   there's more space for me to like rest my hand and write with this thing.

01:36:40   And it's more comfortable in that way. But the iPad Air feels ridiculous to me now.

01:36:46   Yeah, I know. I know what you mean.

01:36:49   I love this thing man. I've got to say, this is my... The iPad Pro and the Pencil is my favorite

01:36:55   Apple device of the year, even including my incredible iMac that I love dearly.

01:37:00   but the iPad Pro is something that I really love and the pencil just tops it off.

01:37:03   They're a fantastic pairing and I'm excited to see where this technology goes and I really hope

01:37:10   that Apple continue to advance their efforts in this realm. Very nice. Now it wraps up this week,

01:37:17   Federico. Yeah, yeah. Good job, Myke. You got to talk about workflows and I got to talk about pens.

01:37:22   How fantastic. Just perfect. Thank you, Michael. If you want to catch our show notes, which we've

01:37:28   got some of the apps that we've been using as well as some of the pen options. If you

01:37:32   didn't know what I meant about some of this stuff, go take a look at some of those pens

01:37:36   and the pencils. I hope that it will kind of inform what I would like to see from this

01:37:39   device. If you want to find those show notes, they're at relay.fm/connecting/67 or in your

01:37:45   podcast app of choice. If you want to find us online, you can head on over to macstories.net

01:37:50   to find Federico's work and he is @Vittucci on Twitter. I am @imike, I-M-Y-K-E. And if

01:37:55   If you want to see Steven's work, if you miss him because he's not here this week, go to

01:37:59   512pixels.net and he is @ismh on Twitter.

01:38:02   We won't actually all be together again next week.

01:38:05   I'm gonna be away.

01:38:06   Yeah, you're always going around Myke.

01:38:09   I know, we're a fast moving bunch.

01:38:13   Yes we are.

01:38:14   So I will be back in a couple of weeks time, but enjoy the show as always next week.

01:38:18   Federico and Steven I'm sure will knock it out of the park.

01:38:21   I love listening to this show when I'm not on it.

01:38:24   We make a good podcast Federico, did you know that?

01:38:27   I believe we do, Myke.

01:38:30   Some have been known to say that it's the world's greatest.

01:38:33   We'll be back next time.

01:38:35   Thanks so much to our sponsors this week, Squarespace, Fracture and Braintree.

01:38:39   Until then, say goodbye Federico.