20: A Box and a Strap05 Jul 2013
Smartwatch hardware considerations, free-to-play, practice coding, and our Google Reader replacements.
- Apple's Yves Saint Laurent hire and the difficulty in predicting an "iWatch".
- Technological Conservatism.
- Panic's Lightning-to-HDMI-cable discovery.
- Chris Harris on iOS 7 icons.
- "Free-to-play" games.
- Coding for practice, and learning new APIs or languages.
- Overly specialized apps.
- Glympse (Casey's road-trip-tracking app).
- Feed Wrangler by _DavidSmith as a Google Reader replacement that's compatible with Reeder for iPhone.
- Lex Friedman's RSS-sync roundup.
- ReadKit for Mac as a potential NetNewsWire replacement.
- Dr. Drang's branch of Marco's RSS-subscriber-count script.
- Why is OS X version adoption slower than iOS, and could Mavericks be free?
⏹️ ▶️ John Do you have a yellow highlight? I like a yellow highlight.
⏹️ ▶️ Jonathan Mann That’s the intro. Transparent yellow highlight. Speaking of pronunciations,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Who’s going to pronounce the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey fashion label CEO?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I’ll take the fall on that if and when we get there.
⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t even know what his name is. I read the thing, but I didn’t retain the name. Is it hard to pronounce?
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco I think his regular
⏹️ ▶️ Marco name is somewhat normal, but the place he came from, I think, is
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey substantially not American sounding. Oh, yes.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I was talking about the company, not the gentleman. So I
⏹️ ▶️ Casey guess we could talk about that. Yes. So Apple, in the last, what, 24 hours, maybe 48 hours,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey well, at the time of recording, has announced that they’ve hired the former CEO
⏹️ ▶️ Casey of Yves Saint Laurent. So no, no, not darn not tea.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Jonathan Mann Yes, I’m Lauren. Son. Lauren.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco I think it’s
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Eve’s I did this research like three hours ago. So now I’ve already lost it But anyway, you can
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Jonathan Mann that because last
⏹️ ▶️ Casey name is French So he should be the one that took the fall for
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Jonathan Mann us. Anyway,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey so what is this for? It’s a apparently he’s been hired as a what is a senior
⏹️ ▶️ Casey vice president. Is that right to report directly to Tim?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco him. He’s basically a senior vice president of nothing in particular working on special products or special projects.
⏹️ ▶️ John As opposed to all those other projects that are totally not special at all.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Right, exactly. Isn’t that great? I mean, that could be. I mean, the speculation from everybody and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco this, there were also rumors about Apple apparently filing for trademarks for the word
⏹️ ▶️ Marco iWatch in a whole bunch of countries in the last couple of days. And so
⏹️ ▶️ Marco everyone’s saying, oh, this is about wearable computing because this is somebody from the fashion world. Right?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s the fashion world? Yes, it is. But
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Jonathan Mann he was the CEO. What sport does that team
⏹️ ▶️ Marco play? Right. So, yeah, exactly. Well, that’s one thing. I mean, obviously a CEO
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is possibly not going to be the best
⏹️ ▶️ Marco but at the same time, if you want to know about the computer market, you’d probably ask Tim Cook, if you could, you know?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So, anyway, so all the speculation is about this being about wearables,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and specifically about a watch in all likelihood. We talked
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a little bit about a possible iWatch.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It just sounds like some kind of illegal observation. It
⏹️ ▶️ Marco just sounds dirty. But would you wear an iWatch, and do you
⏹️ ▶️ Marco think it would really take over the world?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I don’t know. See, on the one side, I am a reformed watch wearer, and I think I might have mentioned
⏹️ ▶️ Casey this in another episode, but I liked wearing a watch, but I am too cheap to
⏹️ ▶️ Casey buy the kind of watches I want, which is like several hundred dollar watches, not the, you know, multi-thousand dollar
⏹️ ▶️ Casey watches that some people have. And I think it would be cool to have a watch that’s functional. Like, I was
⏹️ ▶️ Casey one of those morons that had the Timex Microsoft watch. Do you know what I’m talking about? You
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco would like, hold
⏹️ ▶️ Marco with soap. What? It didn’t broadcast soap all over the place?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco No, I’m talking about like, old school. And you had
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Jonathan Mann rinse
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco it off. I don’t know.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey No, I think we’re talking about something else, but
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think we’re not but go ahead
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Well, anyway, so whatever was it was like a data link or smart link. Where’s the where’s the
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco chat? Well the thing that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco communicated via the IR on the on on your computer monitor
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Well, I don’t know if it was IR or not. But yeah, you would it would flash like random lines across
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Jonathan Mann computer Oh, right, right. You’re right
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and and then you would hold the watch up to the monitor and that’s how you would get like phone numbers in it and All that
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and it was really cool at the time, but in retrospect, it was terrible But anyway, so the point is
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I have already, even as like a 13 year old loser nerd, was already
⏹️ ▶️ Casey all in on the smartwatch idea. But I don’t know, like I haven’t bought a Pebble, and even though
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I listened to a bunch of Geek Fridays with Faith and Jason talking about it, and it did sound pretty appealing, and a friend
⏹️ ▶️ Casey of mine, Phil, has one, it seems a bit early, but then again, if Apple were to do one, one would hope they would do
⏹️ ▶️ Casey it better. So I guess that’s a very long and rambling way of saying, I’d probably consider it if if
⏹️ ▶️ Casey not do it, but we’ll see what happens. What do you think, John?
⏹️ ▶️ John It seems highly unlikely that I would ever wear an Apple watch because I don’t wear a watch at
⏹️ ▶️ John all. Even at least on the cell phone front, I carry a cell phone. It’s not an iPhone, but at least I have it. But I don’t have
⏹️ ▶️ John a watch. I don’t think I’ve owned a watch since, I think, like a sports watch maybe 10
⏹️ ▶️ John years ago. And I have it sitting in my drawer if someone hasn’t stole it from me, right? But I never wear
⏹️ ▶️ John it. I guess if I was going to go running and needed somebody to keep time, I would take it out and put it on. but
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s hard for me to imagine having something like that and deciding, even though I haven’t worn a watch for basically my entire
⏹️ ▶️ John adult life, now I’m going to start wearing one. The only scenario I can see that happening is if
⏹️ ▶️ John I eventually get an iPhone and there’s some sort of integration where this is like a more convenient
⏹️ ▶️ John way to get information without taking out your phone or something, but even
⏹️ ▶️ John that’s a stretch, especially considering I don’t even have an iPhone yet.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I mean, I think it’s also worth considering. I know that’s one of my catchphrases, but
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s also worth considering that, you know, if you would have asked people in
⏹️ ▶️ Marco late 2006, you know, would you, if Apple released a phone
⏹️ ▶️ Marco with no buttons and no removable battery and no keyboard, would you buy it?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco You know, a lot of people would say no. A lot of people did say that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco when it was first announced. But now we’re all using either that or something very similar to it from
⏹️ ▶️ Marco somebody else. Except for me. Except for you. But everybody else on this podcast
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and many other people in the world who have the means to get a smartphone go with an option
⏹️ ▶️ Marco very similar to that. And so, you know, I have to wonder
⏹️ ▶️ Marco what could they do in the watch or watch-like area.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And chances are, I mean, whenever people try to predict Apple products, like
⏹️ ▶️ Marco new categories before they’re out. Not just, oh, this is going to get a faster CPU next week. Well, who cares? Whenever
⏹️ ▶️ Marco people try to predict Apple products, they almost always can only predict it in the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco context of what we know today. For instance, if you look back only like a month ago,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco look back at the predictions for or the mockups for
⏹️ ▶️ Marco what a flat iOS redesign would look like. And so many designers made these.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Because the rumors were that Apple Apple’s redesigning iOS and it’s going to look all flat. Which was not that far from
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the truth. But what everybody came up with was basically
⏹️ ▶️ Marco iOS 6 minus the gradients. And it looked, it was like, even the same color palette,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco all the same fonts, all the same layouts, all the same everything except they just
⏹️ ▶️ Marco removed the gradients basically. And it was not nearly imaginative enough. And Apple
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of course had radically different plans in mind for iOS 7, which now we know about.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And by the way, a lot of it goes beyond just removing gradients
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and all the colors and most of the font weight. But I have to wonder in the watch world,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco or in the wearable world even, what are they going to do that no one’s really going to predict?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And obviously, by definition, we’re going to have trouble predicting this. But I wouldn’t write
⏹️ ▶️ Marco off the idea just yet of, oh, what if they… Are they going to do a watch? Am I going to wear it or not?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco they really are more likely to do something that we hadn’t really considered.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, well the thing that I’m asking myself as I’m listening to you is
⏹️ ▶️ Casey what is Apple solving by having a watch that’s smarter than your average watch?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And the obvious answer is, well, it’s another way. It’s a second screen for the
⏹️ ▶️ Casey device that’s already called a second screen, but it’s a second screen so you don’t have to pull your phone out of your pocket, which is
⏹️ ▶️ Casey a a total first world problem. But I mean, I feel like they would do more than that. That’s
⏹️ ▶️ Casey not enough. And I keep thinking in my head, well, I think Tim
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Cook mentioned that he wears a fuel band, like you had said a moment ago, if I’m not mistaken. He said he wears a fuel band.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I know that a lot of people have Fitbits. And I know that, like Aaron, my
⏹️ ▶️ Casey wife, for example, has a Fitbit and she likes it, but it’s not terribly accurate.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And so my thought is, well, maybe this watch will have some sort of much more accurate sensor that will
⏹️ ▶️ Casey have some sort of really nice integration, kind of like Nike Plus, but better. But then again, I can’t
⏹️ ▶️ Casey envision how you can make a better sensor than what we’ve already got. So I don’t know what
⏹️ ▶️ Casey problem Apple is solving with this Phantom watch, but I got to imagine it’s going to be
⏹️ ▶️ Casey something that we didn’t expect, just like you were saying, Marco.
⏹️ ▶️ John Despite the fact that I don’t have an iPhone and probably not going to wear a watch, I’ve been on board
⏹️ ▶️ John with the idea of Apple producing something that attaches to your wrist or some
⏹️ ▶️ John other part, some small thing, small device like that, because it makes a lot of sense from Apple’s
⏹️ ▶️ John perspective for a lot of reasons. I think we went through these on Twitter, or maybe someone blogged
⏹️ ▶️ John about it a while back. But back when the iWatch rumors first came out, people were just
⏹️ ▶️ John listing reasons it makes sense. It’s a consumer electronic device. Apple’s good at making them. They have a lot
⏹️ ▶️ John of deals with companies and manufacturing. So it’s right in their wheelhouse. It’s not like they’re making, you know, windmills
⏹️ ▶️ John or something. They’re going to be cheap, right? You presume that, like, you can’t make anything that’s
⏹️ ▶️ John that small, that expensive. It’s not going to be made out of diamonds, right? So it’s inexpensive. Inexpensive means
⏹️ ▶️ John you can sell a lot of them because a lot of people can afford them. You don’t have to have someone who can afford a $200, $300 phone plus
⏹️ ▶️ John a two-year contract or something like that, or even, you know, something as cheap as a Mac. It’s
⏹️ ▶️ John going to be presumably very cheap. And that means they can sell a lot of them.
⏹️ ▶️ John and a lot of people are eligible to buy this thing, especially if they don’t tie it to any of their more expensive devices.
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s cheap, and who can’t buy one? You don’t need to be a Mac user or PC user.
⏹️ ▶️ John You don’t need to be computer savvy. You don’t need to hook it up to your television and have a cable subscription or anything else.
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s just kind of like a small, reasonably inexpensive thing that presumably they can get good margins on because it will really
⏹️ ▶️ John be cheap for them to make and they’ll sell it for, you know, 40, 50% margin on it. It’s not crazy
⏹️ ▶️ John to think of. And so you’re like, okay, this seems like a pretty good product. as characteristics that
⏹️ ▶️ John fit with something that Apple could sell a ton of at a good margin and that’s not outside
⏹️ ▶️ John its realm of things that it normally makes. And then the only question you’re left with is, all right, well, why would anyone
⏹️ ▶️ John ever buy this thing? All these characteristics sound great, but are you going to sell them a lump of plastic for 50 bucks
⏹️ ▶️ John and it costs you $25 to make, you know, and you make billions of dollars? And I think
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s probably not that complicated. Casey was saying,
⏹️ ▶️ John all right, so presumably this thing has a screen, and
⏹️ ▶️ John presumably I can do stuff with it that I would normally have to take my phone out of my pocket for. But
⏹️ ▶️ John that’s not an important enough reason, because who cares if I get my phone out of their pocket? If everything
⏹️ ▶️ John comes together in the right way, and Apple does a good job with this product, I think that
⏹️ ▶️ John those advantages that we scoff at now are exactly the thing that will make this a big
⏹️ ▶️ John seller and addictive device again if they do a good job it’s not de facto if they make something that’s
⏹️ ▶️ John a smart watch it will fill this but what I’m thinking of is I wrote something about this on my blog
⏹️ ▶️ John a while back the technological conservatism article where anything you describe that doesn’t exist
⏹️ ▶️ John now that removes some tiny minor annoyance from your life sounds ridiculous like oh such a big deal
⏹️ ▶️ John I get my phone out of my pocket it’s so hard dig into my pocket and then I have to grip the phone take my hand out of my
⏹️ ▶️ John pocket, bring my arm up to my face, turn my eyes to look at the thing. That’s so much harder
⏹️ ▶️ John than having to turn my wrist, you know, like. It’s not that much harder and you can make fun of people for having
⏹️ ▶️ John this thing. But if you get used to doing the ever so slightly easier thing, it
⏹️ ▶️ John becomes annoying to go back to the old thing. Uh, and you know, these things build up in a series of them. That’s
⏹️ ▶️ John what I did in my article, uh, explaining like, look at any past invention,
⏹️ ▶️ John you could have pooh-poohed it with the same exact thing. And yet if you go back 17 of these inventions, no one would want to live in a world
⏹️ ▶️ John without, you know, 20 or 30 or 40 of these things, but they all build on each other. So if they can make this
⏹️ ▶️ John even just a little bit less annoying than something that we do now, even if you were to
⏹️ ▶️ John describe it and it sounds ridiculous, I think that that’s enough. If it’s
⏹️ ▶️ John a good product and people like it and it makes our lives a little bit better and it’s not that expensive, it does maybe one or
⏹️ ▶️ John two things to get people in the door to get that critical mass. Once you get used to having it And it provides some benefit to you
⏹️ ▶️ John even if the benefit sounds incredibly lame and makes you sound like a terrible person and all first World problem and who
⏹️ ▶️ John needs this thing and you get made fun of on the news and everything people will keep doing it Just think of all the things in our life. They’re
⏹️ ▶️ John like, I know right down to the smartphone itself It I think that’s enough
⏹️ ▶️ John if they do a good job with the product. So I’m looking forward to what they Produced again, not that I think I’ll get one
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Gotta always throw that in.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah You know, because like the thing is I think a lot of people listening and people who send feedback Get tied
⏹️ ▶️ John up with the idea of like what we like and use and what we think will be successful and is a good idea
⏹️ ▶️ John And they’re not the same thing necessarily like we’re all I think very aware of What our wants and needs
⏹️ ▶️ John are not the same as everyone else’s and there’s no reason that a product that we choose not to buy Is
⏹️ ▶️ John necessarily a bad product or vice versa?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I? think You know a lot of people like a lot of people in the chat are trying to figure out what
⏹️ ▶️ Marco kind of hardware the watch will have and what else about that. And I think, and you mentioned a little bit about this
⏹️ ▶️ Marco too, whether it would be kind of a stand-alone thing, like
⏹️ ▶️ Marco its own device, whether it would have its own storage, or be able to run its own apps,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco what kind of sensors it would have, my guess, if they actually go through with this, and if this
⏹️ ▶️ Marco watch is a real thing, and there sure is a lot of smoke around that.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco There’s probably something there. all the technology is there. Obviously when you look at things
⏹️ ▶️ Marco like the Pebble and that other one, whose name I forget, but Lex Friedman likes it.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco If you look at things like that, obviously technology is there to do a smartwatch.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco But I think it’s always going to be viewed as an accessory to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco another iOS device. And not quite a second screen necessarily.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco People use that term a lot. I think that’s most of the way there. But I really see it as like, For instance,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you gotta figure out the power envelope here. This thing is not gonna have its own GPS chip. It’s probably
⏹️ ▶️ Marco not gonna have many sensors. You know, it can have things like
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a pedometer and an accelerometer, I guess it probably uses the same thing. It can have things like
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that, but it’s probably not gonna have a lot of its own power. It’s probably gonna be just like,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco almost like a Bluetooth headset kind of level of processing. know just its own
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Bluetooth thing using all the low power stuff and 4.0 whatever that is
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and and just and it would use your other iOS device and it might not have to be an iPhone
⏹️ ▶️ Marco maybe you can use an iPod touch maybe you can use an iPad who knows it can use your other iOS device
⏹️ ▶️ Marco nearby over Bluetooth to do any kind of heavy lifting or even the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John iOS device controls
⏹️ ▶️ John it or God forbid a a web application. No, forget it, that’s crazy. I’ve never heard of it.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, and figure also, look at things like, remember when Panic tore apart
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the HDMI Thunderbolt adapter, or the HDMI Lightning adapter,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and found this tiny little ARM processor in there, and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco figured out that it’s basically like a little tiny ARM chip running a little tiny embedded version
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of AirPlay? That’s a perfect size thing to go and watch. figure,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco shove something like that in a watch with almost all of the rest of the space being taken up by a big battery
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and a very, very thin screen on top, would the screen even need to be a touch
⏹️ ▶️ Marco screen? You can’t really, because doesn’t the current iPod
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Nano, that’s a touch screen, right?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey It is, and I want to talk about that a little bit more in
⏹️ ▶️ John I see this little thing as basically an iPod replacement, because I use the iPod Shuffle a lot, and this is
⏹️ ▶️ John the only thing I think could make me have it. A lot of people are looking for an iPod that’s as small as possible, especially like Ryerson
⏹️ ▶️ John or something like that. There’s no reason this thing couldn’t play audio with an incredible battery life, except
⏹️ ▶️ John for the niggling detail of how does that audio get into my ears? Because you’re not going to have a cord running from your
⏹️ ▶️ John wrist up to your ears. But if it has Bluetooth and it makes Bluetooth earbuds or something like that,
⏹️ ▶️ John that is a solution that would be attractive to all the current people who buy the iPod Shuffle. And again, the iPod Shuffle
⏹️ ▶️ John must cost them, at this point, 15 bucks to make, and they sell it for like $39, $49. I don’t know
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco how much that costs these
⏹️ ▶️ Marco days. I don’t see this thing having a lot of storage though, because I really see this thing as like for this to be good,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it can’t be very bulky, it can’t be very big, and so you’re talking a very, very tight amount of
⏹️ ▶️ Marco space in there, and all the space that’s there must be dedicated to a battery,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John because it’s going
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to be really challenging
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John to get any kind of good
⏹️ ▶️ John battery life. How big do you think the battery is in the shuffle? Because the shuffle is tiny, and most of the room is taken up by humongous buttons
⏹️ ▶️ John and switches that will not be needed to be on this thing. The battery must be minuscule in the shuffle, and it plays audio
⏹️ ▶️ John for hours and hours, and I think
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco especially if they do something…
⏹️ ▶️ John Especially if they do something. Not doing wireless. Well, but I think especially if they do all this prototype stuff of curved glass
⏹️ ▶️ John or whatever, basically spreading the mass out in a curved shape around your wrist gives you a lot more volume than making
⏹️ ▶️ John the terrible pebble thing where it’s like a box, a matchbox sitting on top
⏹️ ▶️ John of your wrist and then as a strap. I imagine this device spreading the volume of the stuff inside it
⏹️ ▶️ John across a much larger area than just having a box and a strap. Plus, a box and a strap would not be
⏹️ ▶️ John Apple style. So I think they have room for enough storage to, say, contain a bunch of podcasts
⏹️ ▶️ John and a low power Bluetooth thing or whatever. Maybe version 1 isn’t that great or whatever. I don’t think we expect
⏹️ ▶️ John to see this until next year, but I think they could pull it off. Basically, an iPod shuffle plus
⏹️ ▶️ John a pedometer plus some kind of screen to give you information from
⏹️ ▶️ John somewhere, and that’s it.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, you know, I had a couple of thoughts about this. Firstly, a lot of times, and I’ve been wracking my brain
⏹️ ▶️ Casey trying to think of an example, But a lot of times when Apple has
⏹️ ▶️ Casey new technologies, you can kind of smell or see the smoke or smell the fire from a distance. And
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I don’t keep up with the low-level technologies and what’s new, but
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I’m asking myself, well, are there any new Bluetooth profiles like Bluetooth Low Energy or something like
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that that’s even newer that’s come out recently that maybe would enable this sort of thing? And
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that’s kind of a rhetorical question. I don’t know that we have an answer to that right now. And the other thing I
⏹️ ▶️ Casey wanted to mention was my friend, I think our friend Chris Harris,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey he posted something very brief on his blog a couple days ago, which I’ll paste in the chat.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And what he was saying is everyone is complaining and moaning about the icons in iOS 7, but
⏹️ ▶️ Casey if you envision those same icons on a much smaller device like the current iPod Nano,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey suddenly that Safari icon we all hate actually kind of looks right. And I just
⏹️ ▶️ Casey wanted to pose that as a little thought exercise. And I don’t know if you guys have any input
⏹️ ▶️ Casey on that. If not, you can tell me about something awesome.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, and we did get a big hint. Somebody in one of the press briefings or something, somebody got someone at
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Apple to comment that iOS 7 was designed with future devices
⏹️ ▶️ Marco in mind. And obviously that could just be, oh, well, we’re going to make a bigger iPhone
⏹️ ▶️ Marco with auto layout that stretches everything. But it could also be things like this. It could also be,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco well, iOS 7’s new aesthetic would look a lot better than iOS 6.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It would look a lot better on a really tiny, low resolution screen, possibly.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Jonathan Mann Who knows?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think there’s something to that. Because on a tiny screen, you don’t have a
⏹️ ▶️ Marco lot of space for ornamentation. And you can’t really discern fine textures
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and things like that. You need everything to be very simple. Although, I guess having a bunch of text labels won’t really
⏹️ ▶️ John So we I think we all agree this thing is not gonna run iOS anyway, so
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco no But it might look like I listen
⏹️ ▶️ John the first eight years of its
⏹️ ▶️ Marco life It’s not gonna run right exactly, but yeah, they have all that I mean, I think you’re right John I think it’s
⏹️ ▶️ Marco this is really like this is the continuation of the iPod line basically they have all the parts they need
⏹️ ▶️ Marco in the iPod line Already, you know all they have they have that nice embedded OS. They have all
⏹️ ▶️ Marco this stuff running on top of it They have a lot of miniaturization, and you know they figured
⏹️ ▶️ Marco out tiny screen navigation And so I do think there’s, there sure is a lot of smoke
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, because they’ve been, like the iPod line has been diverging. Like it’s been the iPod Touch, which is basically
⏹️ ▶️ John like an iPod in name only. And that’s on one side of it, and then the classic kind of lurking there. And then every other iPod
⏹️ ▶️ John has just been trying to disappear. Like slowly getting smaller and smaller until it almost disappeared. Like the
⏹️ ▶️ John shuffle almost disappeared when they had the buttonless one. And they said, no, we can’t do that. We can’t make it actually disappear.
⏹️ ▶️ John, Jonathan Mann something. And then it’s like,
⏹️ ▶️ John all right, well, it gets bigger again. no, no, can we make it smaller and bigger and smaller and bigger? And it’s just they want that thing
⏹️ ▶️ John to go away and they can’t figure out what you do with it. I guess you clip it on your clothes, you can’t carry it when it’s small of
⏹️ ▶️ John a certain size. Maybe a touchscreen will help us hide the buttons, but then how do you hold this thing and
⏹️ ▶️ John try to use the touchscreen at the same size? Like they want it to go away. And so if you could strap it to
⏹️ ▶️ John your wrist and relabel it a watch, that solves a lot of the sort of the design
⏹️ ▶️ John challenges of the shuffle and nano line as they’ve been trying to shrink away into nothing
⏹️ ▶️ Marco speaking of nothing that we were just talking about
⏹️ ▶️ Marco good transition yeah I’m really good at this our first sponsor
⏹️ ▶️ Marco this week is an iPhone or actually iOS sorry an iOS game
⏹️ ▶️ Marco called Optia OPTIA Optia is a beautiful
⏹️ ▶️ Marco an intuitive puzzle game for iOS about reflecting light. So each level you have a laser
⏹️ ▶️ Marco on one side or somewhere in the level and you have one or more targets in the level and there’s a nice little hex grid
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to arrange all these things on and you go and place mirrors and other objects
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that move or alter this beam of light from the laser and you try to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco hit all the targets and it’s this great puzzle game. You know they
⏹️ ▶️ Marco they sent me this game months ago when they booked and I’ve played it a lot, it’s really good. It has 100
⏹️ ▶️ Marco levels in the main campaign, and one thing I liked a lot about it, and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I even emailed them to say how great this was, the tutorial is really great, there’s no
⏹️ ▶️ Marco words. Most games, the first time you launch most games,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you launch it and there’s some giant wall of text explaining what to do, or there’s
⏹️ ▶️ Marco nothing explaining what to do and you just have to figure it out and they don’t do a very good job of teaching you. Very, very few games
⏹️ ▶️ Marco teach you properly as you play in some kind of intuitive way, and they really do it very
⏹️ ▶️ Marco well. They have a great tutorial that you just learn as you go in a very, very intuitive
⏹️ ▶️ Marco fashion. So anyway, Optia has very, very simple mechanics, but there’s a huge amount of depth
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and variety to the puzzles and their solutions. So their philosophy was,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco rather than having complexity for its own sake, the game requires you to find clever new ways
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of configuring your mirrors. And after 80 levels, they say, there’s still new
⏹️ ▶️ Marco mechanics to discover. So there’s a lot here. Very, very deep game. You know,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s a thinker’s game. It’s a puzzle game. It’s a universal app. You buy it once. You can play it on any iOS device.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And there’s no in-app purchases. No coin packs. None of that stupid stuff. It
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is just an honest game, which I like a lot. That’s very rare these days. There’s also,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco there’s no timer. It’s not going to rush you. It’s not like a quick action game where you have to be
⏹️ ▶️ Marco locked onto your phone with tight sweaty hands while you play this. It’s a
⏹️ ▶️ Marco thinker’s game. It’s a puzzle game. Personally, that’s my favorite kind. So
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s very highly rated on the App Store. Go check it out. It’s $2.99. It was
⏹️ ▶️ Marco actually made as a little side note. It was made by two brothers, a mathematician and an artist.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And I think that’s kind of cool. Anyway, so go check it out. The artwork is beautiful.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco The gameplay is great, nice thinker’s game, it’s called Optia, O-P-T-I-A, and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco search for it in the App Store, and I will put the link in the show notes. Thanks a lot to Optia for sponsoring,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and really go check this game out. It’s three bucks, you gotta check it out.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey It is really good, I’ve been playing it for the last week, and the pacing is perfect. It’s
⏹️ ▶️ Casey very simple up front, the tutorial, I completely echo what you just said, the tutorial’s
⏹️ ▶️ Casey excellent, but it gets harder very gradually, and the way you want it to. So there were a couple
⏹️ ▶️ Casey times I got stuck after I don’t remember how many levels, and I would kind of put it away, think for a little bit, come back,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and then I was able to get through that level. And that’s the right kind of difficulty to me. Enough that it makes you kind
⏹️ ▶️ Casey of sit back and think, but not so much that you’re like, oh god, I hate this and I want to break this iPad over my
⏹️ ▶️ Casey knee. So it is really, really good. Go check it out.
⏹️ ▶️ Jonathan Mann So uh… The
⏹️ ▶️ Jonathan Mann, Casey level
⏹️ ▶️ Jonathan Mann editor too, right?
⏹️ ▶️ Jonathan Mann, Casey Pardon
⏹️ ▶️ Jonathan Mann me? The level editor too,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Uh, I don’t recall, actually. I was just playing through the campaign and
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John that’s been keeping me busy. looking
⏹️ ▶️ John at their demo video and it shows someone making a level and then uploading it.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Oh, I guess so then. Look at that.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Oh, look at this. Yeah, hold on. That’s buried in here. There’s over a thousand levels uploaded by
⏹️ ▶️ Marco players and sorted by rating and a level editor. So you can, and it’s totally free.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And it simply, it unlocks when you’ve beaten enough levels. That’s pretty cool.
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s kind of like the PlayStation, Xbox One thing where we’re, the fact
⏹️ ▶️ John that you can pay money for a game and then play it is now a really massive selling point of a game,
⏹️ ▶️ John as in it’s not going to beg you for money. My son is currently playing one of those free-to-play games on the iPad,
⏹️ ▶️ John and I warned him about it, and I talked to him about it, and he understands intellectually what’s
⏹️ ▶️ John going on, but he still says, but can I just get this thing for these coins?
⏹️ ▶️ John And it’s like, don’t you realize it’s, you know, at this point it’s taken like $15 from him
⏹️ ▶️ John, Jonathan Mann already
⏹️ ▶️ John of his own money that he’s paid for just junk in this game. It’s just so refreshing to go back to
⏹️ ▶️ John the good old days when you could pay money in exchange for a product and then enjoy it
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I And the phrase free to play that’s like anytime you have to add
⏹️ ▶️ Marco words to free. That’s bad news, you know, like It’s always gonna be some kind of
⏹️ ▶️ John USA Patriot Act free to play means not free to play, right?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco No child left behind
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Let’s not get me started Oh, goodness. So, Marco, I noticed a flurry of
⏹️ ▶️ Casey what looked like productive activity over the last week, and you were apparently in iTunes
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Connect. What’s going on, man?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, I was trying to be in iTunes Connect. Well, touche. So, what’s up?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I decided—I mean, I don’t really have that much to say yet, but I decided a
⏹️ ▶️ Marco little less than a week ago that I wanted another app to exist, not the one I’ve
⏹️ ▶️ Marco been working on, But I wanted something else to exist. And something that I would use every day.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And so my other app, I’ve actually only been working on the web component so far. And I’m just
⏹️ ▶️ Marco about to start the iOS stuff. But I decided to have a second
⏹️ ▶️ Marco app that I was making just for, just because it’s a really, really simple thing. I’m sorry, this is
⏹️ ▶️ Marco going to tease everybody in a really cruel way. It isn’t that exciting. It’s a very, very simple,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know, very low functionality app, but it’s just something
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I wanted. So, I decided to whip it up and I’m going to put it up for sale for like a dollar,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco probably by next week. I’m sorting out a tax ID issue with iTunes Connect, but
⏹️ ▶️ Marco once I get through all that, I’ll put it up for sale and you’ll all see what it is. And it’s really simple and really stupid, but
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I want it to exist and I’m going to use it a lot, so we’ll see. of the biggest reasons
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I wanted to do it, not only because I want to exist, but because,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco first of all, it got me back into iOS development. I mean, keep in mind, because of various
⏹️ ▶️ Marco timing of Instapaper and the magazine sales, I haven’t actually written iOS code in
⏹️ ▶️ Marco probably six months. Off the top of my head, it’s been a while. Maybe five months. Either
⏹️ ▶️ Marco way, it’s been a long time since I’ve written iOS code, and it’s been even longer than that since I’ve written and substantial
⏹️ ▶️ Marco iOS code. And so this was kind of a way to warm me back up to it, get me back into it,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and just practice before I tackle my next big project’s iOS code base, which is probably
⏹️ ▶️ Marco going to be non-trivial in scale, and I hope it’s going to last a long time. So
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it was nice to have kind of this warm-up round first to do a very, very simple app. And I
⏹️ ▶️ Marco will see if I can get away with this with Apple, but I made the app look like an iOS 7 app even though it’s
⏹️ ▶️ Marco written for iOS 6 which can be in the store now. So I think it was kind of interesting
⏹️ ▶️ Marco making an iOS 7 design and getting into that and and faking
⏹️ ▶️ Marco all this stuff for
⏹️ ▶️ John Is this your first ARC app?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco No the magazine was. Instant Paper never made it to ARC but but the magazine did
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and so yeah ARC you know at first I was like well I don’t really need this because I
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’m perfectly fine doing manual retain release and auto release and I
⏹️ ▶️ Marco never really had major bugs with that. So I really didn’t need ARC for that, but it is nice.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s a nice convenience to have. So I switched to it with the magazine during some point
⏹️ ▶️ Marco release and yeah, it’s fine. I still don’t really think I have much use for things like storyboards,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco but yeah, ARC is good.
⏹️ ▶️ John Are you using Xcode 5 or no?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, no, you can’t because you can’t build app store versions with that yet.
⏹️ ▶️ John Oh, that’s right, yeah.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So this is all using the old tools and the old SDK, but writing an app in the new style. And then, I
⏹️ ▶️ Marco mean, it runs on iOS 7. It runs great because my testing iPhone was
⏹️ ▶️ Marco iOS 7. But I had to dig out my TIFS phone
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and my old iPad are my iOS 6 test devices. But yeah, it was
⏹️ ▶️ Marco nice. I really do appreciate the value of practice. And you don’t,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know, when you just work on one app for a while, you don’t really get a lot of opportunities to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco practice with a clean slate. It was an app that uses, you know, APIs
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and techniques that I’ve never used before, so that was fun, too. And, yeah,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s just a fun little thing. Chances are no one’s going to buy it except, you know, ten people or so, but I don’t
⏹️ ▶️ Marco really care. You know, even if no one buys it, it serves its purpose already.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey So is it using auto layout?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco No. Yeah, right. I haven’t gotten that far. You seem bold.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Jonathan Mann Just wanted to ask. To
⏹️ ▶️ Marco be fair, it only has two screens, and they’re both very, very simple. Like, I don’t even use Interface
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Builder for this app. I will use it when it’s warranted, you know, when you’re laying
⏹️ ▶️ Marco out something relatively complex. But for this app, it was really not necessary.
⏹️ ▶️ John So can we all guess now what it is?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco If you want. I mean, I’m not going to tell you anything, because it’s not going to be very exciting. Maybe next week when it’s available, if it’s available next
⏹️ ▶️ John here are my guesses.
⏹️ ▶️ John My first and only categorical guess is that it has to have something to do with coffee. And then within that realm,
⏹️ ▶️ John I have to think of the things that you do every day that you would want a simple application to help you manage. And the only things
⏹️ ▶️ John I can think of, not knowing much about coffee or anything, except for what I’ve heard you talk about, is one of them
⏹️ ▶️ John is timing how long the various steps in the process to make coffee take. And the other one is keeping track of your coffee
⏹️ ▶️ John supplies in terms of the age of the beans and when they were ground and stuff like that. Those are my only guesses. We’ll see how. And I have no inside
⏹️ ▶️ John information on this, how close I am next week.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Casey, do you want to make a guess or should I just tell John about his guesses?
⏹️ ▶️ John Don’t tell me about them, just don’t tell me now how wrong I am. We’ll find out next week.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey So what was it? Was it nursing clock was the other
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Jonathan Mann app? Yes, it was. Okay, now I’m biased against
⏹️ ▶️ Casey clocks. Can we start by saying that this is not in any way related to that?
⏹️ ▶️ Jonathan Mann Biased against clocks.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I don’t even know where to go from there. I’m just, I’m upset because if this is a coffee clock, then
⏹️ ▶️ Casey you would have had the alliteration, but now all your apps will have to have the word clock like they
⏹️ ▶️ Casey supposedly had to have
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John the word instant. Only
⏹️ ▶️ John the ones that don’t sell any copies have clock in the name.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco No, there is no clock. And it also does not even have any kind of network connectivity. It’s a very simple app. But
⏹️ ▶️ Marco first of all, John is totally wrong. I’ll just tell you that now. The
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey reason why— You
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John could have given me a
⏹️ ▶️ Marco right. I think this is an interesting topic, though. The reason why you’re so wrong is because I wouldn’t use those apps.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco People always, I feel so bad, people work so hard on coffee apps and people send me coffee app
⏹️ ▶️ Marco promo codes all the time and ask me to try them out. I don’t need an app to make coffee, I really don’t.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I don’t need an app to keep track of my coffee roasting supplies. That’s like, I just know how to make
⏹️ ▶️ Marco coffee and I know how old my beans are. My beans are never
⏹️ ▶️ Marco more than, the roasted ones are never more than two weeks old. Because I go through them faster
⏹️ ▶️ Marco than that. So I always know, I have some idea how old they are. And the unroasted beans,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know, unroasted beans keep for like a year or more even.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And I never have them for that long. I go through them too. So I don’t really need to keep track of that.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco But people making coffee, like, okay, so coffee I just know how to time it because
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I do it every single day and it’s fine. Tea I always have to manually time because it takes longer
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and it’s more sensitive. especially like green tea, which is my favorite kind, that’s like, you know, a two-minute brew,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco usually at most. And so, you know, you gotta be pretty precise with that, and I don’t have
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a good intuitive sense of how long two minutes is, so I, you know, just try to wing it.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So I just use the built-in clock app with its timer mode. I mean, like,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’m not… A lot of people are huge fans of having, like, very
⏹️ ▶️ Marco specialized apps for all the things they do in their life. life. I’m not
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that kind of person. I don’t see the need for a coffee timer when I can just use the system timer. I don’t see the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco need for a very specialized data tracking app when I can just use
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a text file or a paper notepad. It’s just like a difference
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of philosophy or opinion. A lot of people just love super specialization like that. I’m not into it
⏹️ ▶️ Marco at all. Do you guys use stuff like that?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I can’t say that I do. I’m trying to think of an example. When I go for a run, I use RunMonster. A lot of people
⏹️ ▶️ Casey use RunKeeper. I don’t know if you classify that as hyper-specific.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I like using an app called Glimpse when I’m traveling to someone’s house. And we’re going
⏹️ ▶️ Casey to see that again this weekend, Marco and I. But I like using that as a way.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I call it reverse or inverse stalking. Basically, Glimpse just beams your location to
⏹️ ▶️ Casey one or more people for a short window of time. And it’s a really nice way if you’re traveling for more
⏹️ ▶️ Casey than like 10 minutes for whoever’s at your destination to know where you are.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco I think that’s really
⏹️ ▶️ Marco cool. Like when you first sent me that, I thought, this is stupid. I’m not gonna complete this link even. What the hell could this
⏹️ ▶️ Marco possibly be? And then I saw it and like, you guys were coming to our house
⏹️ ▶️ Marco once and we were like, you know, trying to get things done in time and trying to know, oh, do we have time to go walk the dog or whatever?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And it’s nice to know when you’re expecting somebody to know, oh, okay, they’re 45 minutes away and they’re right here. Or,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco oh, look, they’re stuck in traffic. to be a little bit longer, it’s okay if they’re a little bit late. It’s really nice
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to know that stuff in advance, and as you go. So that’s actually really cool.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, and to answer from the chat, no, it’s not really what Find My Friends is for.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey This is more of a short-term but rapid updating thing, whereas Find My Friends is more of a long-term,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco updates thing.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And it also gives you an ETA, which is nice.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I wanted to, if we’re mostly done with this topic, I wanted to go back to something you said a minute ago, Marco, which
⏹️ ▶️ Casey is it gave you practice. And one thing that I think is important
⏹️ ▶️ Casey as a developer, which all three of us are, is to get a lot of practice. And one thing that I’ve found,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and I think I might have talked about this briefly in the past, but one thing I’ve found is getting practice in
⏹️ ▶️ Casey things that you’re not used to is always, always, always, always helpful.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And so you had said you were using frameworks that you’re not used to in iOS. So you’re getting the practice
⏹️ ▶️ Casey in the stuff you’re used to, which is iOS in general, but you’re also expanding a bit and getting practice and frameworks
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that you’re not used to. My day-to-day is.NET, and so whenever it is I sit down and write a
⏹️ ▶️ Casey little Objective-C, that scratches a different itch in my brain, which
⏹️ ▶️ Casey in turn I think positively affects the way I think about my.NET code. And
⏹️ ▶️ Casey so one of the ways that I stay fit as a developer is by
⏹️ ▶️ Casey trying to learn new things always and man do I get grumpy if I’m not learning.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I mean I’ve left jobs because I’ve been pigeonholed and not learned stuff and it drives me nuts.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I was just curious, do you two have anything you’d like to add in terms of what keeps you sharp
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Greenewald Coffee. John Greenewald Fine. I should
⏹️ ▶️ Jonathan Mann have seen that coming.
⏹️ ▶️ John Greg Scarlatoiu Lots of coffee.
⏹️ ▶️ Jonathan Mann John Greenewald John?
⏹️ ▶️ John got an email, I don’t know if you guys were CCNR, but someone asked me last week I think I was mentioning how
⏹️ ▶️ John once you know the basic concepts, you can pick up any programming language because all they’re
⏹️ ▶️ John doing is you just look for what the equivalence of this concept is in that language or whatever. You just need some critical
⏹️ ▶️ John mass of concepts. So if you’ve never used a language that’s object-oriented and you try to
⏹️ ▶️ John learn one that is, you have a hurdle to overcome before you figure out the language. First, understand what object
⏹️ ▶️ John orientation is and the various parts of it, and second, how does this language do those things?
⏹️ ▶️ John Once you have this collection of concepts, you can pick up anything. Someone asked, what are those concepts?
⏹️ ▶️ John the laundry list of concepts, so it’s that critical mass. And what I told this person was
⏹️ ▶️ John basically, like, when I thought of, let me see what they are, let me start listing them. It actually ends up being a pretty darn
⏹️ ▶️ John long list, especially when you get into specifics like concepts that are specific to GUI programming,
⏹️ ▶️ John or COCO, event loops and delegation and event
⏹️ ▶️ John bubbling and things that are related to any sort of user interface type toolkit.
⏹️ ▶️ John There’s laundry lists for each one of those things. you know, server-side programming, whatever. But so I think just,
⏹️ ▶️ John I thought making a list was not useful because the list really actually is pretty long. And the best thing for you to really do
⏹️ ▶️ John is to not try to go out and, okay, now I’m going to learn about the concept of object orientation. Now I’m going to learn about the concepts
⏹️ ▶️ John and functional program. Now I’m going to learn about the concepts of, you know, closures and currying stuff. Like you will
⏹️ ▶️ John not be successful by doing that. The best thing to do is find a language that you’re interested in
⏹️ ▶️ John using for a project that has one of these concepts you want to learn and do the project. and then find a different language
⏹️ ▶️ John that happens to have some other concept that you might want to learn and do a project in that language. Like, you can’t learn the concepts by,
⏹️ ▶️ John like, academically trying to learn them. What you have to do is a series of projects, each one of which touches on
⏹️ ▶️ John one of these new concepts. And that’s why I was saying, like, once you’ve been… Especially in web development, where
⏹️ ▶️ John you’re using umpteen languages and frameworks and APIs, like, and they keep changing all the time. Once you’ve been a programmer for a long
⏹️ ▶️ John period of time, you pick these things up. And I don’t know if there’s any shortcut. I don’t think you can, like, get the book
⏹️ ▶️ John with all the concepts, learn the concepts, and say now, even though I know zero or one languages, I’m ready for
⏹️ ▶️ John any language. You have to have done real projects with real APIs with real products.
⏹️ ▶️ John And once you get enough of them and they’re different enough, that builds up sort of like this base of
⏹️ ▶️ John knowledge. And then you’re free to pick up anything much more quickly. So my advice is to basically
⏹️ ▶️ John do real projects with real languages and real APIs and make
⏹️ ▶️ John sure each new one that you do It doesn’t overlap 100% with the last one you did.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, I absolutely think that’s the right approach. When I was first a professional developer,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I was writing C++ on a Watcom compiler for DOS, which was kind of weird.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And then I taught myself C Sharp just by writing an app, actually,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey comically enough, to track my time during the day because I started doing a consulting gig. And so
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I needed to make sure I tracked my time. And so I wrote a C sharp app in order to help me track
⏹️ ▶️ Casey my time. And that’s how I learned C sharp. And then I ended up doing C sharp professionally and still am my
⏹️ ▶️ Casey really, really basic app that’s in the app store. I did that just to teach myself objective
⏹️ ▶️ Casey C and I couldn’t, I couldn’t echo what you just said enough that the best way to do it is
⏹️ ▶️ Casey to dive in, but to do something specific and productive. And so
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I think that that’s the best way not only to stay sharp, but also to learn something new. And, and again,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I can’t stress enough that in my experiences, when I learn a different language or a new framework or whatever the case may
⏹️ ▶️ Casey be, it makes me think about the stuff I feel like I know cold differently.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I mean, I know C sharp pretty darn well. And when I learn different languages or different frameworks or whatever
⏹️ ▶️ Casey the case may be, that changes how I write my code in C sharp, again, usually for the better. So
⏹️ ▶️ Casey forgive me for actually doing something nerdy on this podcast.
⏹️ ▶️ John like when someone, you know, like comes back from France and they start using like like French words or eating French foods
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco that. I find that. Yeah,
⏹️ ▶️ John well, that happens. Like, you know, I’ve read, especially early in my career, lots of Java books, even though the only Java
⏹️ ▶️ John program I ever did was in school. I never did it professionally. But a lot of the early books
⏹️ ▶️ John about like object-oriented design principles and stuff use Java as their language or were specifically about how to write
⏹️ ▶️ John a better application in this one of the umpteen GUI APIs that Java supported in its history.
⏹️ ▶️ John And I read a lot of those Java books, and I brought with me a lot of the concepts and practices
⏹️ ▶️ John whatever I was doing at the time. And you could see, like, oh, this person has just read some book on this,
⏹️ ▶️ John some Java book, or maybe you just read the Patterns book, which did a lot, you know, the Gang of Four Patterns book, which does a lot of examples in
⏹️ ▶️ John C++, if I recall correctly. And for a little while, you’ll have that carryover effect.
⏹️ ▶️ John And I think that’s weird initially, but it’s good, because it’ll settle down eventually. Like, you’ll learn some new
⏹️ ▶️ John idea, and you’ll just want to use that new idea in this totally different language because you’re excited about it. And maybe
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s not quite a good fit, and maybe you’ll be too enthusiastic and you’ll paint yourself into a corner, but you’ll learn something. And sort of
⏹️ ▶️ John that will settle down. You say, okay, I learned about this concept, and I found out this other language also
⏹️ ▶️ John has this concept. Now I’m going to use it everywhere. Okay, that’s too much. It’s not a good fit. But now it’s in my tool belt, and now I have it
⏹️ ▶️ John available to me to know when I have this kind of problem, use this approach. And when I have that kind of problem, use that approach.
⏹️ ▶️ John Like KJ Healy, the ever helpful chatroom person, said,
⏹️ ▶️ John as a friend of mine likes to say there’s an easy way and a hard way to learn programming language and the easy way doesn’t work. And that’s
⏹️ ▶️ John not the answer most people want to hear, but that’s the only wisdom I have to offer from my experience is that there
⏹️ ▶️ John is actually no substitute for experience and you just have to do lots of things. And I don’t know
⏹️ ▶️ John a shorter way to get to end up at the end point without going through all those intermediate
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And one, I think there is a slight, not necessarily a shortcut, but at least makes it a little bit easier.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It doesn’t save you any time, but it does help a little bit. To slow down the pace of what you’re being barraged
⏹️ ▶️ Marco with that’s new, and to reduce the chances that you’ll
⏹️ ▶️ Marco get totally frustrated and just give up and stop, I find it very helpful to take
⏹️ ▶️ Marco half steps. So for instance, when you first dive into programming for the very first
⏹️ ▶️ Marco time of any language, you can’t make a half step. But once you know a language,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco then maybe the next step you take isn’t learning a whole new language from scratch, but
⏹️ ▶️ Marco if you know Java from school, then maybe try writing a web app in
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Java, because you probably didn’t do that in school. If you know a little bit of Cocoa
⏹️ ▶️ Marco in Objective-C, because you made an iOS app at some point,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco try making a radically different iOS app using very different frameworks, but using the same language.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the language that time. Or if you make web apps in PHP,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco then you already know things like HTML and HTTP requests and protocols and stuff like that.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So if you already know how to make web apps in one language, then maybe learn another language that makes web apps.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So you’re only taking a half step in some of those instances. So it’s a little bit easier and you won’t just give up.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, that tends to happen naturally during the course of a career, because the next job you get that will probably build on
⏹️ ▶️ John something you already know. And so you will end up like, okay, well I did web apps and language acts and now I need
⏹️ ▶️ John to get a new job. And so I have experience building web apps, but this company uses a different language. You will
⏹️ ▶️ John find yourself writing web apps in a different language, and now you’ve taken that half step. Like, all the things we’re
⏹️ ▶️ John talking about, yes, you can do them on your own, sort of as a hobby or whatever, but if it’s your career,
⏹️ ▶️ John you will probably not find yourself doing completely, totally unrelated things from job to job because
⏹️ ▶️ John you will, That’s not a good way to build your career. Your salary and stature will not
⏹️ ▶️ John be increasing with each job change. You will want to build on what you know before, but you will also necessarily have to do
⏹️ ▶️ John things that you’re unfamiliar with because you’re not going to find a job that’s exactly like your old job probably.
⏹️ ▶️ John That just happens over the course of an actual programming career.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Good point. All right. Our second sponsor this week is a return
⏹️ ▶️ Marco sponsor. It’s Hover. Anyone who’s ever bought a domain anywhere
⏹️ ▶️ Marco else probably has a pretty good idea of how much the process of buying a domain and managing
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it can suck. And Hover is so good. Believe me when I tell you
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I have moved every domain that I have that they can host,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I have moved there. Like, there’s some of the weird international TLDs they don’t have registration rights for yet,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco but everything else that they can host, I have moved there. Twitter believes that everyone should be
⏹️ ▶️ Marco able to take control of their online identity with their own domain name and then they make it easy to do
⏹️ ▶️ Marco so. They have for.net,.co,.com, TV, many of the country code TLDs.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Getting a decent.com is difficult, but there’s still tons of.nets available. There’s tons
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of options for you. They take all the friction and hassle out of owning and managing domain
⏹️ ▶️ Marco names. They don’t believe in heavy handed upselling or aggressive cross selling.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco if you go to a domain site, there’s like a million check boxes that you have to uncheck during checkout
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to say, no, I don’t want all this other stuff, and I don’t even know what that is, and there’s a check box
⏹️ ▶️ Marco here that says you won’t set fire to my house for $10 a month. Like, there’s, it gets so bizarre
⏹️ ▶️ Marco at other places, and, and, uh, Hover is just clean, honest,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco easy. It is a great place to register domains. They have great, they have
⏹️ ▶️ Marco great support. call them and a human being answers. Really, really great technical support if you
⏹️ ▶️ Marco need it. Great pricing. They have email hosting, they have forwarding, everything you’d expect
⏹️ ▶️ Marco from a great domain registrar. And more importantly, nothing that you would expect not to be there.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s fantastic. And they’re also part of 2COWS, which has been around forever,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco in internet terms at least. So they’re officially founded in 1994. It used to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco stand for the Ultimate collection of Windows shareware, right? Did I get that right, guys? I asked last time and I
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Anyway, they’ve been around forever. High quality people, high quality company. You can trust them. They’re not going
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to scam you. They’re not going to upsell you. Really great no hassle domain name registration.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Anyway, go to hover.com slash ATP. For high quality no hassle registration,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco use our promo code ATP and you’ll get 10% off. Again, it’s hover.com slash ATP
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and you’ll actually automatically get it or just use promo code ATP at checkout But for 10% off, thanks
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a lot to Hover for being an awesome domain registrar and for sponsoring our show.
⏹️ ▶️ John I keep forgetting to use our own… I always forget to use our own codes. When
⏹️ ▶️ John I was on my past podcasts, I would hear other people’s promo codes, all these ways I could be saving money. I believe I have never used
⏹️ ▶️ John a promo code for Hover and I have spent too much money there. I should use my own… Maybe I can remember ATP
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco ATP or is there another
⏹️ ▶️ Marco option? Yeah, it’s just ATP. All right. 10% off. They do codes for a long time. Like for a while, I was using Dan Sent
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Me. Now Now I can just use ATP. It’s great.
⏹️ ▶️ John I’m just paying full price all the time. It’s not that expensive. Domains are cheap.
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco Yeah, it’s true.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think every, especially listeners of this show are probably very familiar with having a lot of domains
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Jonathan Mann and having too many
⏹️ ▶️ Casey All right, so what else are we talking about? I’ve been bossy this episode.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey Do you want to talk about
⏹️ ▶️ Marco any RSS crap or is that just kind of over?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I don’t really have much to add. A lot of people have asked what we’re using. I don’t know if we wanted to do a quick
⏹️ ▶️ Casey roundtable. I’ve thrown my weight and $19, whatever it is, behind a
⏹️ ▶️ Casey friend of the show, underscore David Smith, Speed Wrangler. I’ve liked it since the moment
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I paid for it and started using it. It’s gotten even better now that Reader for iPhone is supporting it.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And that’s basically all I have to say about that. David Smith’s a good guy. So you should give him some cash. He deserves
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, I’m also using, I also agree that he’s a good guy. I also agree that he’s a friend of the show. And I’m also using
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Feed Wrangler. I guess we’ll have to link to that in the show notes as well. I wonder if he can give us a coupon
⏹️ ▶️ Marco code. Actually, probably not within our purchase at least. But I
⏹️ ▶️ Marco believe he also supports Stripe on the site. Yeah, I like it. I wasn’t crazy about giving
⏹️ ▶️ Marco up Reader back when I first tried it, but now I don’t have to do that. So I went back to Reader. I like Reader a lot on
⏹️ ▶️ Marco iPhone. So yeah, I I like it a lot. It works. It’s fast.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s solid. Even in the last couple of days when he’s had a massive influx of new users, it’s held
⏹️ ▶️ Marco up really well. I’ve never really had any problems with it so far.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Even among the paid options, I think it’s one of the cheapest. It’s very well priced. I
⏹️ ▶️ Marco know Lex Freeman, our friend and ad salesman,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco he wrote a big article on Macworld. Maybe I’ll link to that. He recommended Feedbin, was it?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco The one that’s not free. Feedly is free, right? I
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, so he likes Feedbin, the other one. But it’s $24 a year, so David Smith is actually
⏹️ ▶️ Marco cheaper. And I haven’t tried Feedbin. I don’t know if it’s better in any particular way, but
⏹️ ▶️ Marco for me, Feed Wrangler, it works. It’s a sync service. I would rather not use
⏹️ ▶️ Marco his first party apps, because I already have apps I like.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So as long as you’re using someone else’s apps, it doesn’t really matter which sync service you sync with. All that matters is cost and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco whether it works, right? So yeah, I like Feed Wrangler a lot. John?
⏹️ ▶️ John I’ve just been ignoring this entire thing because I assumed,
⏹️ ▶️ John, Jonathan Mann eventually, everyone
⏹️ ▶️ John will have everything sorted out. And three days before the shutoff date,
⏹️ ▶️ John I will simply look online, and there will be some consensus for some slot-in replacement that I can
⏹️ ▶️ John use that will let me continue to use the apps that I like using to read news. That turned out not to
⏹️ ▶️ John be true, much to my disappointment. I mean, I really thought it would happen.
⏹️ ▶️ John My habits aren’t that esoteric, but I thought someone would just support the
⏹️ ▶️ John API, and I could just do some Etsy host thing to just get it to magically work. Or
⏹️ ▶️ John I didn’t know what I expected, but I thought people would get everything to go together. And it didn’t work out for me. So
⏹️ ▶️ John I mostly do my reading on the iPad and Reader, which is different than the iPhone version. It’s not a
⏹️ ▶️ John universal app. I have both of them. I like never use the iPhone version. So
⏹️ ▶️ John I have nothing that I can read on now on the iPad. Like I bought Mr. Reader or something like that, which
⏹️ ▶️ John kind of works, but I miss my good old reader with two Es. So I’m just gonna wait for Reader to
⏹️ ▶️ John start working with some service that I like or use. And I use NetNewsWire on the Mac, and it just
⏹️ ▶️ John turned off sync. Like I just, I’m gonna do it the old fashioned way.
⏹️ ▶️ John And I don’t think it’ll be that big of a deal, because I, believe it or not, I know
⏹️ ▶️ John which things I’ve read like I don’t understand which part of my brain is dedicated to keeping track of The last on red point
⏹️ ▶️ John and hundreds of feeds, but I don’t I don’t have to do it But I just know the last thing that I’ve read
⏹️ ▶️ John So I’m using feed bin because I figured I should pay for one of them But feed bin only is only supported on reader on the
⏹️ ▶️ John iPhone Presumably will be supported in reader on the iPad and then I
⏹️ ▶️ John guess I’ll be kind of all set except for the cross device singing I don’t know. It’s kind of. Yeah, the
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco desktop is little.
⏹️ ▶️ John I didn’t like Google Reader.
⏹️ ▶️ John I’m glad that it went away. It’s just that we’re now in a transition period that’s kind of uncomfortable. And a lot of the new readers that I’ve
⏹️ ▶️ John tried to have downloaded and purchased, a lot of the new reader apps that didn’t really exist before
⏹️ ▶️ John the Google Reader apocalypse happened. And I still like Reader better. So I’m hoping my old
⏹️ ▶️ John apps will come to support it. And NetNewswire 4, I don’t like the UI that I’ve seen so far
⏹️ ▶️ John of that. So maybe I’ll just keep using that newswire three until it dies
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, I I’m with you on a newswire for I I was a big fan of three for a couple
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of years now and For I just I don’t really like the direction
⏹️ ▶️ Marco they’ve gone they removed a lot of what I like And they haven’t added a lot that I like
⏹️ ▶️ Marco in their efforts to remove the other things
⏹️ ▶️ John But it’s not it’s not done yet. So I’m gonna wait and see
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco that’s true. It’s not done I mean, I
⏹️ ▶️ John think there’s a possibility that they will eventually come to support all the things that I like. And
⏹️ ▶️ John by the time 3 stops working entirely, maybe 4 will be something nice for me to use.
⏹️ ▶️ John I’ll be disappointed if it’s not, because what’s the alternative on the Mac? I don’t want to use a web app, right?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, I mean, I don’t know. I use ReadKit now because that’s like, I think it’s the only Mac
⏹️ ▶️ Marco app that natively supports anything right now that’s not Google Reader.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco If it’s not the only one, it’s certainly one of very, very few. I’d love to know if there’s any others, but
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I don’t think there are. It’s decent, but the problem with ReadKit
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is that it started out as an Instapaper pocket readability app.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And so it’s really designed for that. It’s designed to be like a Read Later service client.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And they added feeds, the developer added feeds, and the developer’s very responsive on Twitter and everything.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco He or she, I forget, added feed support to it recently, so it can now do
⏹️ ▶️ Marco all these things. I assume it’s under pretty rapid development right now, so
⏹️ ▶️ Marco this all could change soon. But right now, it just doesn’t flow as gracefully as NetNewsWire.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It doesn’t have a lot of the keyboard navigation. There’s a whole lot of missing details
⏹️ ▶️ Marco about NetNewsWire. When you build something into your workflow, which your
⏹️ ▶️ Marco RSS client, your Twitter client, These are all important parts of anyone’s workflow who uses them.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And once you get into a habit of using the keyboard a certain way, or expecting
⏹️ ▶️ Marco things to disappear when you’ve read them, or any kind of minor detail like that, it really gets
⏹️ ▶️ Marco ingrained so much that when you have to switch, the differences or the absence of any
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of those things really grinds on you. Or grates on you, I guess. And
⏹️ ▶️ Marco so ReadKit is kind of like that with me right now. Every time I use it, I want to set
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it on fire, but I’m glad it’s there and I like it a lot better than any web app I’ve seen so far.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’m assuming it’s going to get a lot better quickly, because it really does seem like the developer’s being pretty active
⏹️ ▶️ Marco with it. So I’m going to hope that turns out well.
⏹️ ▶️ John There should be money flowing into the ecosystem now, because everyone’s using Google Gear for free, and
⏹️ ▶️ John a reasonable portion of the replacement services and apps charge money. And so
⏹️ ▶️ John hopefully now this influx of money will result in whoever gets the most of it rapidly increasing
⏹️ ▶️ John the quality of their application.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco sure. I mean look, if BlackPixel just took NetNewsWire3’s code base and somehow made it work with any other
⏹️ ▶️ Marco service, they could release it for $100 and people would buy it.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco But anyway, there’s a good question in the chat, a few lines up.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco who I now lost because it was too long ago, asked how blog traffic
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is being affected now that Google Reader
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is shut down. I posted my stats the other day and first of all, if you run a
⏹️ ▶️ Marco feed crawling service, please, please for webmasters,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco add the number of subscribers in the user agent string when you fetch the feed because
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Google Reader did this, a few others do it. It’s very, very important for web people to know,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco if you look at their stats at least, it’s very important to know how many subscribers there are to the feeds. And if you are running
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a service that proxies the crawling of the feed and caches it so that it’s not one-to-one anymore
⏹️ ▶️ Marco on our side, please report your subscriber counts. Anyway, so,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Google Reader, for me, I have like 54,000 RSS subscribers, or 53,000 most of the time.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that like 9,000 or so was other
⏹️ ▶️ Marco aggregators as of a few days ago, and the other, you know, 46 or whatever it is, or 40, 43,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco or 44, that was all Google Reader. So it was a massive chunk of the subscriber base. And it’s always been that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco way, you know, except for the last few days when everyone switched over. So I,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and especially, you know, sites like mine and Daring Fireball and a bunch of others, sell
⏹️ ▶️ Marco sponsorships based on feed subscriber numbers at least we have so far
⏹️ ▶️ Marco so it’s interesting I mean last night at like 2 a.m. I published a major article so my
⏹️ ▶️ Marco traffic today has been very high so that today’s kind of an outlier but yesterday was the first full day I believe
⏹️ ▶️ Marco without Google Reader being operational and so I looked at my traffic for yesterday
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and it was actually slightly up from previous days it was it was but overall it was a pretty average
⏹️ ▶️ Marco day. You know, I didn’t see some kind of massive dip down. And I wonder,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I mean, over time, it’s probably too early for anybody to say, but I wonder for people who didn’t do anything special
⏹️ ▶️ Marco yesterday or today on their sites, like, did you find any kind of massive drop in traffic or referrals
⏹️ ▶️ Marco by the lack of Google Reader? And so far, I haven’t seen it on my site.
⏹️ ▶️ John My site gets so little traffic that I’m really getting a distorted picture,
⏹️ ▶️ John but I saw the shift away from Google Reader for my subscription numbers happening like
⏹️ ▶️ John weeks in advance, and it shifted dramatically. I should graph it. It was like it used to be like 90%
⏹️ ▶️ John Google Reader, and then just a bunch of other stuff, and it shifted to like 50-50 weeks before the transition.
⏹️ ▶️ John I haven’t looked at the numbers post-transition, but I assume it’s gone in the other direction now.
⏹️ ▶️ John I’m assuming my numbers might have actually stayed steady because they’re so low.
⏹️ ▶️ John But I don’t know. I was just trying to pull it up while you were talking to see if I could look at the logs. I’m using the
⏹️ ▶️ John same—I’m using a conversion of your terrible shell script, but basically the exact
⏹️ ▶️ John, Jonathan Mann same algorithm. Dr. Drang’s?
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, yeah. The exact same algorithm of how to figure things out, parsing it out of the user agents or whatever.
⏹️ ▶️ John And yeah, it’ll be interesting to see how that went. But yeah, I was surprised at how quickly the Google Reader bailout
⏹️ ▶️ John happened before it shut down because the few people who are reading my site are the super nerds. They know it’s coming
⏹️ ▶️ John and they’re trying out different services and stuff.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, I think to answer the immediate question of what do you do
⏹️ ▶️ Marco with sponsorships, I think the biggest thing really is I’m just going to keep selling
⏹️ ▶️ Marco them the way I’ve been selling them because I assume that even if I have a big drop temporarily or
⏹️ ▶️ Marco permanently in RSS I assume that that you know dedicated people who are reading
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the site and and who put you know any kind of thought into Into reading the site and care
⏹️ ▶️ Marco at all about it They’re probably still gonna find some way to read it and and so there’s not really gonna be an interruption for
⏹️ ▶️ Marco them and all The other people who like had it in Google Reader, but hadn’t logged into Google
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Reader in like a year People who just aren’t that engaged
⏹️ ▶️ Marco engaged they probably I’m guessing we’re not really
⏹️ ▶️ Marco responding to the sponsorships that much anyway So or even seeing them if they weren’t really even
⏹️ ▶️ Marco checking it so I’m just gonna you know I’m gonna check in with my advertisers and just
⏹️ ▶️ Marco see like you know are you guys you know I’m if They’re getting the right kind of response from what they expect and from
⏹️ ▶️ Marco what previous things have gotten them Then I don’t think it’s that big of a problem You know I think you’re
⏹️ ▶️ Marco your most engaged fans are still gonna read you there They’re going to find out how to read
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you if they are surprised by Google Reader shutdown. They’re going to find out how to read your site
⏹️ ▶️ Marco for the most part, and that’s going to be it. What it’s really going to hurt, I think, is all the really
⏹️ ▶️ Marco small sites that don’t sell feed subscription because they’re just too small or their owners
⏹️ ▶️ Marco don’t care enough to do that. You know, small, infrequently updated sites where
⏹️ ▶️ Marco if you ask some of their readers to list the sites they read, they probably wouldn’t think of them because
⏹️ ▶️ Marco they don’t update enough for, you know, they’re not that important to them, but then like, you know, in an RSS
⏹️ ▶️ Marco reader, when they would make their one post a month, all those people would see it. And now,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know, anyone, anyone they’ve lost might not come back because they might, they might forget about
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it. So that’s going to be the bigger issue, I think, is for like, for smaller, infrequently updated sites,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco they might see a bigger change than the bigger, like, I think, I think Gruber’s going to be fine, right? I think Daring
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Fireball is going be fine. But I think a much smaller site might have
⏹️ ▶️ Marco some trouble, but we’ll see.
⏹️ ▶️ John screwed. I just ran the thing on today’s stats. Why am I still seeing Google Reader numbers
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Their crawler is still running.
⏹️ ▶️ Jonathan Mann Yeah, that’s
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Jonathan Mann why.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, their crawler… somebody said that their API is actually still running until the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco 15th. I don’t know where that is sourced from, so that could be crap. I don’t know, but
⏹️ ▶️ Marco apparently it’s still running. So I would assume, because the API is still running, I would assume the crawler will also run until the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco 15th at least. So we will see.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, I’m over 50% non-Google reader as
⏹️ ▶️ John beginning of January, so the people all shifted out. In fact, 75% on the first 75% non-Google reader.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, I don’t even know how many people
⏹️ ▶️ John read. Just because you have a Google reader subscriber, it was always difficult to tell.
⏹️ ▶️ John Just because the thing is checking your site and reporting that subscriber number, how many of those subscribers
⏹️ ▶️ John are looking at your feeds?
⏹️ ▶️ John Especially if you provide a full text feed and there’s no reason for someone to go to your site. Traffic numbers to the
⏹️ ▶️ John site, that’s people actually coming to your site and you can do the normal unique IPs per day,
⏹️ ▶️ John whatever, dance on that and get a more reasonable number. The reader
⏹️ ▶️ John subscribers, I guess, were a good proxy because when it was just Google Reader, Even if the numbers were crazy,
⏹️ ▶️ John we were all using the same numbers, so advertisers could compare relatively.
⏹️ ▶️ John Even if the number was totally made up, you’ve got a 7 and you’ve got a 3. I don’t know what those numbers mean, but 7 is more than 3.
⏹️ ▶️ John They’re both provided by Google Reader, so there you go.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think we’ll be able to tell also just by repeat buys. Obviously, that doesn’t
⏹️ ▶️ Marco help initial sponsors very much as we figure all this out, but if we see
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that our sponsors are still buying repeat buys, then I think we’re fine.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco The exact same thing applies to podcasts. First of all,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco how you measure podcast downloads is itself very much up for debate because
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s not simple. Some clients will start multiple downloads. There are places
⏹️ ▶️ Marco like Stitcher that work with Google Reader where they cache a copy for everybody so you don’t see any of that traffic unless
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you become their partner and sell your soul to the devil or something and I don’t like Stitcher
⏹️ ▶️ Marco but sorry and and you know with podcasts
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s always difficult when selling it to a sponsor because like you know if we say we have this many downloads per episode
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a good sponsor probably should although usually doesn’t but probably should ask how are
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you measuring that because that could be the difference of like you know four times more or
⏹️ ▶️ Marco four times fewer hits it’s it’s like it’s that big of a difference of how you measure it.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And then there’s the other problem, as Deshie points out in the chat, that a lot of podcast clients —
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the biggest one is desktop iTunes — will keep downloading podcasts for a while even
⏹️ ▶️ Marco if you aren’t listening to any of the episodes. And so a download doesn’t necessarily equal a listen. Just
⏹️ ▶️ Marco like for Google Reader, a subscriber doesn’t necessarily equal somebody seeing that.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So yeah, it’s a mess. Maybe unless you guys have any questions. Is that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco anyway, I think that’s
⏹️ ▶️ Marco mean unless you guys have anything else to add on that topic
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I Think we’re good John
⏹️ ▶️ John do two minutes on free Mavericks.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco That’s some kind of
⏹️ ▶️ Marco like like it prevents cancer free Mavericks.
⏹️ ▶️ John That’s free radicals.
⏹️ ▶️ John they felt full of blueberries. Yeah, Mavericks are different than radicals The question someone
⏹️ ▶️ John asked me on Twitter or whatever, will Mavericks be free, as in not cost you any money to download
⏹️ ▶️ John from the App Store?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I thought it couldn’t be because of some strange accounting stuff. I don’t remember exactly.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, that used to be the case. I know they, we are not qualified to talk about this,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I believe they changed the way they accounted for iPhones like four years ago to prevent
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that from being a problem with iOS updates and for iPod touches as well.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco But I don’t I think the Mac might still be accounted for the old way I don’t know. It wouldn’t surprise
⏹️ ▶️ Marco me if they still have to charge for it.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey guessing John You’re about to lay the truth on
⏹️ ▶️ John I mean I don’t know like the only thing I think of is when they were showing again But the WCD know when
⏹️ ▶️ John they were showing a keynote when they were showing the adoption numbers And you know the adoption of iOS was massive and the adoption for
⏹️ ▶️ John for the new versions of Mac OS was not Massive
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco that’s interesting. Yeah, because one of those
⏹️ ▶️ John What can they do to move that needle? Well, you know people, free gets much better traction than 30 bucks,
⏹️ ▶️ John right? Free also gets massively better traction than 99 cents,
⏹️ ▶️ John which is counterintuitive, but changing your price from zero to one cent totally
⏹️ ▶️ John destroys how many copies you can distribute. You wouldn’t think so. Like, changing it from
⏹️ ▶️ John two cents to one cent doesn’t have the same effect as changing it from one cent to zero. Free is magical, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John So if they want to move the needle on OS X penetration, and I think they do, but I think they’re kind
⏹️ ▶️ John of annoyed about all the people who are still running Snow Leopard and Lion out there, especially
⏹️ ▶️ John Snow Leopard. I bet Apple wants to just, you know, Federi wants to go to all his houses and upgrade those people’s computers. Like, stop
⏹️ ▶️ John running Snow Leopard. That’s the last good version you put out, you know, whatever. They want
⏹️ ▶️ John to get those people on, and so how can you do that? Lower the price or make it free. If they can’t make it free for some
⏹️ ▶️ John accounting thing, though, I’m worried that like, well, If you can’t make it free because of some crazy legal reason,
⏹️ ▶️ John is it even worth it to try lowering the price? It has been getting lower. What did it used to be?
⏹️ ▶️ John I can’t remember the price.
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco I think it went from $30 to $20,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco right? I don’t remember. But
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s going down. I did a little graph of it at one point. So they can keep going down. It could be $5, $2.99, $0.99.
⏹️ ▶️ John It would be great if it could be free though. And if you think about why can’t it be
⏹️ ▶️ John free, Apple doesn’t need that money. If you multiply 20 bucks times, assume every single
⏹️ ▶️ John person who owns a Mac upgrades and see how much money that is. It’s like, you know, five minutes of launch day iPhone
⏹️ ▶️ John revenue. Not that they’re going to, you know, oh, we don’t need the money or whatever, but I think version penetration
⏹️ ▶️ John is more important to them than the money they make from this. So I think
⏹️ ▶️ John if they can make it free, they should. I’m not ready to say whether they will or not, but presumably we’ll
⏹️ ▶️ John find out at some point. point before I have to publish my review that talks about what
⏹️ ▶️ John the pricing is, because it would really be bad if the day before they release it they say, and finally here’s the pricing.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think another problem, I mean honestly I don’t really think that the pricing of Mavericks really matters at all.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think the reason why OS X adoption is not matching iOS adoption
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is because computers are generally in use longer than phones because of the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco pricing models and subsidization and things like that. There’s a whole lot of computers
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that can’t run Mountain Lion that Apple has sold four years ago or whatever, and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco they’re still in use. Apple computers have a pretty long useful life.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco As you know, if you’ve ever tried to buy a cheap one because you can’t afford the full-priced ones,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and you find out that used ones still sell for quite a bit of money,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco or if you’ve sold one after you’ve used it and you realize, wow, I got a lot more money for that than I expected.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Macs are in use for a pretty long time after they’re sold.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Whereas iPhones, if Apple cuts off a two-year-old iPhone model from compatibility,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that’s not that big of a problem since so many iPhones are discarded
⏹️ ▶️ Marco after two years or sold for bargain basement, nothing, just some kind of trade-in program.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco This doesn’t apply everywhere in the world, course, but it certainly applies to a lot of smartphone
⏹️ ▶️ Marco buyers. And so, you know, if
⏹️ ▶️ Marco for Apple to keep moving that bar up for hardware, I think with OS X it restricts
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that a lot more on the Mac side than on the iPhone side.
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey Plus computers
⏹️ ▶️ John are a pain to upgrade.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John about to say the same thing.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And plus they store a lot more critical data. I mean, yes, you have photos on your iPhone, and if you’re a regular person
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that’s the only place say exist, except maybe iCloud. But even beyond that, you have tax
⏹️ ▶️ Casey documents. You have financial documents. You have office documents
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that you can’t get rid of if you’re a normal person. And so the thought of that going wrong, I
⏹️ ▶️ Casey would expect, would prevent a normal person from being very enthusiastic about upgrading.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Even though OS upgrades on Macs seem to go really well most of the time, it’s
⏹️ ▶️ Casey still scary, much scarier than on an iOS
⏹️ ▶️ John device. It’s not an appliance. It’s the same reason that people feel totally comfortable adding and removing apps on their phone,
⏹️ ▶️ John but don’t feel totally comfortable adding or removing apps on their Mac. And the Mac App Store has helped a lot with that, except for the removing
⏹️ ▶️ John part. But it’s still a different world. It’s the little appliance. People upgrade iOS, and they
⏹️ ▶️ John just expect it to work. Which, if you think about it, we know that it’s not actually much less complicated on the
⏹️ ▶️ John iPhone, because it is basically an OS X-based operating system, and it’s doing all the fancy stuff. And the
⏹️ ▶️ John sandboxing, the restrictions, really help the upgrade process have work on something that’s in a known state if you
⏹️ ▶️ John haven’t jailbroken or something like that, but it’s still pretty complicated and those guys must be sweating. People just expect,
⏹️ ▶️ John oh upgrade to iOS 6, alright, tap this button and their phone will be unusable for a while and they’ll come back
⏹️ ▶️ John and it’ll work. And if it didn’t, people would be livid, like this thing broke my phone, whereas with a computer
⏹️ ▶️ John people accept some amount of like, oh this is going to be a big deal and I have to set aside a whole day to do
⏹️ ▶️ John it and upgrade’s going to be, I mean even we do, I mean I certainly do because I know, I mean
⏹️ ▶️ John granted I’m a special case, but like I know that I’m going to have to like rebuild all my stuff in user local probably or
⏹️ ▶️ John I’ll want to rebuild it because it would be a good time to upgrade stuff and things that link to shared libraries that aren’t there or
⏹️ ▶️ John incompatible, you know, weird esoteric stuff. But even just making sure like all my apps are updated before
⏹️ ▶️ John I upgrade and doing all that looking for any apps that are going to not work with the new version
⏹️ ▶️ John and stuff like that, like, that’s a pain. And I know when I do OS upgrades, I don’t do them like
⏹️ ▶️ John I publish my review and then I don’t upgrade my main machine for sometimes weeks or months after just because
⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t want to think about having to do that and I’d rather just wait for the applications to get updated. So
⏹️ ▶️ John that is a big barrier too, but I think the $29 just doesn’t help. But like I said I’m not
⏹️ ▶️ John sure if going lower is worth doing if you can’t go
⏹️ ▶️ John all the way free. Rob Matheson in the chat room looked it up and said $29 for Snow Leopard 19,
⏹️ ▶️ John Snow Leopard in line, and 19 for Mountain Lion. So if you’re gonna follow the pattern
⏹️ ▶️ John it would be one more $19 release and then down to $9, but who knows they don’t they don’t follow any
⏹️ ▶️ John patterns. We learned that from cat modifier cat
⏹️ ▶️ Marco thanks a lot to our to our two sponsors Optia and hover and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco We will see you guys next week
⏹️ ▶️ Jonathan Mann Now the show is over they didn’t even mean to begin because
⏹️ ▶️ Jonathan Mann it was accidental Oh, it was accidental.
⏹️ ▶️ Jonathan Mann John didn’t do any research. Marco and Casey wouldn’t let him. Because
⏹️ ▶️ Jonathan Mann it was accidental. It was accidental.
⏹️ ▶️ Jonathan Mann And you can find the show notes at atp.fm.
⏹️ ▶️ Jonathan Mann And if you’re into Twitter, you can follow them at
⏹️ ▶️ Jonathan Mann C-A-S-E-Y-L-I-S-S. So that’s Casey Liss, M-A-R-C-O,
⏹️ ▶️ Jonathan Mann A-R-M, Auntie Marco Armin, S-I-R,
⏹️ ▶️ Jonathan Mann A-C, USA Syracuse. It’s accidental. It’s accidental.
⏹️ ▶️ Jonathan Mann They didn’t mean to. Accidental. Accidental. Tech
⏹️ ▶️ Jonathan Mann podcasts so long.
⏹️ ▶️ John I haven’t lost a letterpress game in like 30 games, so I need some new opponents.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Now you’re not going to get to somebody like that from me.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah. And I, did you give up Casey?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Jonathan Mann just
⏹️ ▶️ Casey No, I just haven’t played letterpress in a while. Not because I don’t like it. I just haven’t thought about it.
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s Casey is glad that the letterpress application does not keep records. Oh God.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey You have no idea. I would be like one in 394. You’ve never won against
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I don’t doubt it, but
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John I did not keep it
⏹️ ▶️ John track. Cause I’m always rooting for you. Now I’m like, this is going to be
⏹️ ▶️ John game. Casey, you’re going to make it happen. Like
⏹️ ▶️ John, Jonathan Mann months ago, months ago,
⏹️ ▶️ John you came close. I’m like, oh, this is it. This is the game. He’s going
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey to do it. And then you choke. And then you haven’t come close since. And it’s just been depressing.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I was so bad. I’m so bad. I remember that game. And I was on cloud nine and then right back to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I hope you’re still recording.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I am. Now I’m getting
⏹️ ▶️ John I got to add a topic to the notes that we didn’t get to this week I learned from my vacation.
⏹️ ▶️ John strange ways that real people use iPhones.
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey Oh, I’m already interested.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Don’t get started, because we’ll go for another two hours, but I’m already interested. What
⏹️ ▶️ Casey do we think about titles?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco A Box and a Strap, what was that about? Like
⏹️ ▶️ John the pebble, the stupid pebble
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco thing. Oh, OK.
⏹️ ▶️ John Have you seen a lot of those in person? I find them
⏹️ ▶️ Marco looking. I’ve seen one in person, and I could not believe how nerdy and how large it
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John was. It was huge. It’s like
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s from the 80s. It’s like
⏹️ ▶️ John gaskets on it, like that yellow Walkman.
⏹️ ▶️ John, Jonathan Mann I feel like. The Sony thing, you
⏹️ ▶️ Jonathan Mann, Marco know? Yeah, exactly.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I feel like, you’re right, the era of most watches has so passed us by,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco like, it would have been awesome if we could have a smartwatch in 1991, but now,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Jonathan Mann yeah,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco but now, like, who, I don’t know, who’s wearing watches? I mean,
⏹️ ▶️ John well, the people, like, I thought the people who got the Pebble would stop wearing it, and I see them, and they’re still wearing it, so
⏹️ ▶️ John I believe that it is performing some useful function for them, and that function is probably not telling
⏹️ ▶️ John them time because you gotta jiggle the stupid thing to make the backlight go on so you can read the damn screen.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey All I know is I just want a Dick Tracy watch. Even though it would be terrible in every way,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I just want a Dick Tracy watch. Is that so much to ask?
⏹️ ▶️ John Here’s the problem with the Dick Tracy watch. When you see Dick Tracy using it, what you see
⏹️ ▶️ John is what he sees on the watch, which is some attractive person in a head-on shot. What they see is the inside of
⏹️ ▶️ John his nose. And do you realize that actually using a Dick Tracy watch would just be like nose
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I didn’t think it had video, I thought it was just audio.
⏹️ ▶️ John Maybe it is just audio, but I’m saying like the view of the person, that person is like in a studio, standing
⏹️ ▶️ John right in front of the thing, It’s going head on right into them, they’re making eye contact with Dick Tracy somehow, And Dick
⏹️ ▶️ John Tracy is showing them the underside of his chin and nose.