Updating my iMac’s drive to an SSD. Gonna be a long night, but @owcdigital’s kit should help. Let the surgery commence!

WWDC Week of Wants, Vol 6

Today's Ramblings: Siri

Apple was the first compnay to put voice control in a phone with the iPhone 3GS. Siri took over for Voice Control with the iPhone 4S, and was a vast improvement.

Then everything slowed down. Siri requires Apple to integrate the data into the system. There are a few partners - Wolfram Alpha, Bing, Yahoo for weather, and some sports data. Beyond that, it’s still down to just telling you what’s already on your phone.

WWDC Week of Wants, Vol 4

Today's Ramblings: Home

Whatever happened to HomeKit?

When HomeKit was announced in 2014, it showed a lot of promise. Having one way to interface with all the fiddly bits of home automation seemed like a godsend to people like me. I have Z-Wave light switches, wifi motion sensors, IP-controlled home theater equipment, security cameras, and more all jammed into my one-bedroom apartment. My fiancée is very tolerant.

WWDC Week of Wants, Vol 2

Today's Ramblings: Messages

Messages (the concept) are very important. Messages (the app) needs to live up to that. I use a lot of messaging services for different things. Slack is the go-to app for work, I use Facebook Messenger for some things, the stock Messages app for iMessage and SMS conversations, and even What’s App once in a while.

Messages (the app) seems kind of stuck. Video and audio snippets have been added to compete with SnapChat and HeyTell, but that’s really it. There are two main things I’d like to see improved in Messages.

WWDC Week of Wants, Vol 1

Today's Ramblings: Photos

I use Apple’s Photos and iCloud for my main photo library, but I have Dropbox’s auto-upload turned on as a poor-man’s backup, and I’m a big fan of Google Photos

Google Photos has search down pat. I can type in Jimmy dog and get all the images and videos of me and my dog. I can type in train and see all the pictures of trains I’ve taken. The “train” search will even show me pictures of people on a train, or standing next to train tracks. It’s pretty incredible.

I actually voted by mail last week here in California, but Im wearing my sticker today. Despite the fact that the media called the race before tens of millions of people voted, your vote will still count, no matter your candidate of choice. Get out there, people. #RockTheVote

Google Photos Hits One Year

Google photos has been around for a year. I use it and love it. Besides the obvious benefit of an additional free (lower resolution but still perfectly serviceable) photo backup, Google does a lot of fun stuff with your pictures. Google makes photo albums, collages, animated GIFs out of burst photos, and really smart videos of events. It’s pretty incredible what the power of machine learning can do.

Check out the screenshot above. I literally did nothing to the pictures I uploaded, but Google knows a dog when it sees it. It also, apparently, knows a dog dressed as a penguin, which is crazy-pants awesome.

Voting By Mail Is Awesome

I just got my vote-by-mail ballot for the primaries here in Los Angeles County.

Why doesn’t everyone do this? The state of Washington has eliminated all other options. You vote by mail, or you don’t vote. This is the way it should be. Why? In my humble internet opinion, these are the big reasons:

New Apple Music Video

Tap-Tap-Taylor

Two things about this commercial:

  • Seeing Taylor Swift “fall” on the treadmill is unexpected and damn funny.
  • Also unexpected is Apple shows what a UI-shitshow Apple Music is. It takes Tay-Tay six taps to start a song. I think I’d rather scroll through a thousand songs on a Click Wheel.

Prince

Purple Rain

I’m not big on posting about dead celebrities. Art affects people deeply, whether it’s music, acting, painting, or whatever the shit the Kardashians do. I happen to really like music. I was never a huge fan of Prince, but I always knew he was a great musician and he put on a hell of a show.