Unofficial Accidental Tech Podcast transcripts (generated by computer, so expect errors).

358: Emotional-Support Mac Pro

Cheese, wheels, rat tails, and a Buick.

Episode Description:

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Transcribed using Whisper large_v2 (transcription) + WAV2VEC2_ASR_LARGE_LV60K_960H (alignment) + Pyannote (speaker diaritization).


  1. John’s Mac Pro update
  2. Sponsor: Burrow (code NYE)
  3. Cheese wheels
  4. Video routing
  5. VR on Mac Pro
  6. Non-Retina Mac Pro
  7. Monitor cables (really)
  8. Sponsor: HelloFresh (code ATP9)
  9. Casey’s cool Buick
  10. Alyx
  11. Project CHIP
  12. Narrow feedback channels
  13. Sponsor: Casper (code atp2019)
  14. #askatp: Why clamshell?
  15. #askatp: Noisy HDDs for backup?
  16. #askatp: New design language
  17. Ending theme
  18. Learning to drive

John’s Mac Pro update

⏹️ ▶️ Marco So, I’ve never gotten a chance to ask this before. John, what computer

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John are you using? John Grieco I’m

⏹️ ▶️ John on my Mac Pro. Steven

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Connelly How old is that Mac Pro? Old enough to be in middle school or brand new? John

⏹️ ▶️ John Grieco It’s not yet old enough to vote. Steven

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Connelly Well, but that doesn’t narrow it down.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey John Grieco Fair. So, you’re on the old and busted?

⏹️ ▶️ John Steven

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey Connelly It’s not busted. John Grieco You

⏹️ ▶️ John know what’s busted?

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey Steven

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco Connelly Skype

⏹️ ▶️ John is busted. John Grieco Well, join

⏹️ ▶️ Casey the club. Steven Connelly So I presume we will talk about your Mac Pro

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and if you follow John.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco Wait,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco is John’s Mac Pro older than Skype?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey Maybe.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey No way,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco no way. When did Skype

⏹️ ▶️ Casey come out? At the end, oh no, no, no, no. 2003, 16 years ago. There you go.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey The

⏹️ ▶️ Marco fact that we didn’t know and it was close. Yeah, that’s a real, real sad

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey state of affairs.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey only

⏹️ ▶️ Casey five years off. Oh man, all right, so what’s your computer

⏹️ ▶️ Casey situation if we don’t follow you on Twitter, would you mind giving us a quick update, please?

⏹️ ▶️ John My Mac Pro was delivered. My monitor and stand have not yet

⏹️ ▶️ John shipped.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Have you connected any other displays to your Mac Pro in the meantime?

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I have not. Have you opened the box yet?

⏹️ ▶️ John Yes.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Well, and to be clear, I don’t mean the brown, you know, shipping box, I mean the actual box.

⏹️ ▶️ John I did. I need to make sure there was a Mac in there and not just like a, you know, a bunch of cinder blocks.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Have you installed it onto the stand where you are, the little end table, whatever it is that you intend to put it

⏹️ ▶️ Marco on.

⏹️ ▶️ John No, no, I’ve figured, I have a bunch more podcasts

⏹️ ▶️ John to do. I have this one, I have a Star Wars one tomorrow. Like I need a break in podcasting

⏹️ ▶️ John because there will be some instability in my podcasting situation when I’m

⏹️ ▶️ John dealing with this. And so a couple of reasons, one, I didn’t want to introduce that instability, I

⏹️ ▶️ John don’t know how long the transfer will make, and two, I decided to change my data migration strategy, trying

⏹️ ▶️ John to minimize the size of the window. Like I’ve decided I want to like

⏹️ ▶️ John get this thing installed in the place where it’s going to be and get everything set up and take out all the old

⏹️ ▶️ John stuff and then I don’t want there to be like a three-day data transfer thing. And a lot of people are

⏹️ ▶️ John telling me that doing it over ethernet with another computer hooked up is like takes a long time and is you know troublesome

⏹️ ▶️ John or whatever despite the uh supposed transfer speeds. So I’m I’m gonna try just

⏹️ ▶️ John taking a drive out of my old Mac Pro and attaching it to my new one. And I have a couple of things

⏹️ ▶️ John coming in the mail to help me with that. So I don’t have to cannibalize any of their hardware. So

⏹️ ▶️ John all that combines to say that I am not ripping out the old until

⏹️ ▶️ John probably Sunday at the earliest.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey But you have removed it from both the packing box, the actual box, you

⏹️ ▶️ Casey have fondled it, you have cuddled with it over one evening.

⏹️ ▶️ John Nope.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey No to what? To all

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John people? I didn’t

⏹️ ▶️ John take it, I didn’t do any of that. I didn’t take it out of the box. I have not cuddled with it. Oh,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco John. So you just opened the box, looked at it, and put the box back on? Like what? That’s right.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco You have, if I had gone 11 years without getting a new computer,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I would have significantly less self-control than this.

⏹️ ▶️ John But it’s not, it’s not self-control. It’s not like I want to get it. I want it to be nice and contained in the box, awaiting the time

⏹️ ▶️ John when I can disrupt everything. And really, what I really need to do is, when the time comes, I need to get that box

⏹️ ▶️ John farther away, and then tear out the old, and get all that stuff

⏹️ ▶️ John situated, and swap in all my new infrastructure.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Now, normally, I would not suggest anything like this, because it’s kind of abuse

⏹️ ▶️ Marco of the retail system. But if this were me in this context, I would probably buy the LG

⏹️ ▶️ Marco 5K just for the 15 days and then

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John return

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it, just to have a span of having a monitor so I could use this as my computer after 10

⏹️ ▶️ Marco or 11 years. Like I don’t know how you could wait that long.

⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t know what I’m gonna do, because the problem is, as we’ve already established, the only monitor I have that I can attach it to is my

⏹️ ▶️ John gaming monitor, but I use my gaming monitor for gaming, so maybe like when I have to podcast.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey What’s

⏹️ ▶️ John more important? Oh, Destiny is more important.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Oh, God, I vomited in my mouth a little bit. How can Destiny be more important than a computer you’ve been waiting for?

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John Because

⏹️ ▶️ John Destiny is a more frequent activity than

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey podcasting. Oh, John. Especially on vacation.

⏹️ ▶️ John This is like,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey John Charles, who the hell is that? I always get it wrong, John Craig. John Craig, go on. I’ve got about one sip of my holiday

⏹️ ▶️ Casey party, literally one sip, and

⏹️ ▶️ John I’m already in the next one. And you’ve already

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey forgotten my name,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that’s fine. I do that every time

⏹️ ▶️ John too, I do it every time. So maybe I’m gonna be carrying that monitor back and forth, I don’t know, but it remains to be seen. Anyway,

⏹️ ▶️ John I’ve got the box right next to me right now. It’s just, I’m within arm’s reach, I’m putting my hand on

⏹️ ▶️ John it right now. It’s sitting there, it’s in the room, it’s my emotional

⏹️ ▶️ John support Mac Pro. I just have to have it with me at all times. And I feel better.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco How much of the room does that box take

⏹️ ▶️ John up? It’s not actually that big. Like I was actually trying to eyeball measure it from the

⏹️ ▶️ John unboxing videos to see if I could, at one point I was, listen to the most recent rec tips to hear this saga,

⏹️ ▶️ John but at one point I was considering going to the UPS warehouse thing to pick it up myself in my car. And I’m like,

⏹️ ▶️ John is there gonna be a problem getting this into my trunk? Like is the

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey trunk

⏹️ ▶️ John opening big enough? Cause I couldn’t tell, like how big is that box? You just, you see it on YouTube and you’re trying to estimate the height of the people

⏹️ ▶️ John and whatever, and it’s not, of course, there’s the outer box and the inner box, but it’s actually not that big. It’s, you

⏹️ ▶️ John know, it’s bigger than my old Mac Pro box, I think, but it would easily fit in any car or any reasonable trunk.

⏹️ ▶️ John Very heavy, but not all that

⏹️ ▶️ Casey big. You know, the advantage, John, of having a big-ass car is that you don’t have to worry

⏹️ ▶️ Casey about whether or not the box will fit.

⏹️ ▶️ John I probably have more trunk space in my Accord than you do in that behemoth SUV thing.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey That is patently untrue, and I am too lazy to look up the actual measurements, But

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I can assure you that is not true. Now I need to back up a half step. You had casually

⏹️ ▶️ Casey mentioned the most recent episode of your other podcast, one of your 17 other podcasts, Reconcilable

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Differences, episode 120, Where the Packages Sleep.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey It is too soon and too aggressive to say that this rivals the Preparing the Way episode.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey But, oh, it’s in the spirit of it. And it was amazing. And what made it even more amazing

⏹️ ▶️ Casey is that I knew how this story ended before this story even began. And

⏹️ ▶️ Casey oh my goodness, hearing you fret over the things you fretted over, is that the right word? It doesn’t matter if hearing, hearing

⏹️ ▶️ Casey you fret and worry about the things you frat over, uh, anyway,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey uh, hearing you worry about all that and knowing the eventual outcome was both depressing

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and delicious. Now, would you like to briefly recap the story? Would you like me to briefly

⏹️ ▶️ Casey recap the story? And would you like to one way or another update the listeners, even if they have heard

⏹️ ▶️ Casey rectiffs as to what the final resolution was.

⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t want to recap the whole thing, but it was a long saga of me expecting to get

⏹️ ▶️ John the package and it not arriving during a very frustrating day. And then the next day, basically

⏹️ ▶️ John having no new information about when it might arrive and giving up on it entirely and rescheduling it. I don’t

⏹️ ▶️ John think that maybe that didn’t make it into the thing. But anyway, eventually it did show up. It, you know, all’s well that ends well. But

⏹️ ▶️ John I had one frustrating day and I podcasted about that frustrating day. You can hear that in rectiffs. But then the

⏹️ ▶️ John next day it actually arrived unannounced.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey This is after you’re trying to schedule it for the following day because you thought that it just

⏹️ ▶️ Casey kind of never made it back on the truck the day after it was actually supposed to arrive?

⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, like, you know, UPS does not do a good job of keeping track

⏹️ ▶️ John of where their things are.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, seemingly not, which is not at all alarming.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, and this is also like, this is one of the inherent risks of ordering something very expensive to be

⏹️ ▶️ Marco shipped to you, and depending on it getting there on time, the week before Christmas. It’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco like, every shipping carrier is a mess at that point. And the only one that is remotely

⏹️ ▶️ Marco reliable I have found in high demand time, or any time, is the purple version of FedEx.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Because FedEx has the green home version, which is basically a different company. The

⏹️ ▶️ Marco regular express service that FedEx offers with the purple and white trucks, that is the only one I’ve

⏹️ ▶️ Marco found to be reliable for like, you know, for all the time. It’s always reliable. They always come when they say

⏹️ ▶️ Marco they will. Maybe like they might be late by a half hour during their like 1030 window, you know, if you’re not that important, but

⏹️ ▶️ Marco otherwise like they’re there every day. Whereas like everyone else, UPS, the other FedEx, the,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco um, of course the postal service is a mess. Um, like the, anything else is very unreliable

⏹️ ▶️ Marco much of the year, especially during busy days like the week before Christmas or iPhone day.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Now, you were stressed about the situation with regard to the box.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey You were in the midst of an ice storm, as you briefly mentioned moments ago. You were shoveling your front walk

⏹️ ▶️ Casey seemingly every hour on the hour, and you were very concerned that the box would be left in a puddle.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Was the box left in a puddle? Michael

⏹️ ▶️ John O’Hanlon Well, because it came the next day, and winter being winter, and

⏹️ ▶️ John it had gotten colder, all the moisture had evaporated and the thing had been shoveled. So the my walk was bone dry when

⏹️ ▶️ John they actually arrived. Two people carried it from the truck to me, which is great. There was no

⏹️ ▶️ John pan truck involved, no scraping of my stairs. And even though they came

⏹️ ▶️ John unannounced, I was attuned enough to the sound of the UPS truck engine that I did actually have

⏹️ ▶️ John time to chuck the dog in a room and open the door for them open wide. Yeah,

⏹️ ▶️ John they’re walking down my walk. My door is already open to them. Here I am. Here’s my big package. And what do they

⏹️ ▶️ John do? They walked it over to to me and I was like, here you go. Like I was ushering them into the already

⏹️ ▶️ John open giant doorway and they just put it down on the walkway. They put it down on

⏹️ ▶️ John the walkway, they turned around and they walked back to the truck. Wonderful. They left. No

⏹️ ▶️ Marco signature. Well, they probably have rules against like going into your

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John house.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Maybe

⏹️ ▶️ John they do. They could have got it up

⏹️ ▶️ Marco onto the porch. Now, like, are you friendly with your usual UPS driver?

⏹️ ▶️ John No, I don’t get as many packages as you do.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, this is the advantage of both working at home and ordering a crap ton of stuff from Amazon. Our UPS

⏹️ ▶️ Marco driver, we give them a Christmas card every year. We do holiday tips, including all the garbage men,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the UPS driver, we tip everybody, and the UPS driver is on that list when we can find them. The only problem is that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s hard to find your usual UPS driver during the holiday season because they

⏹️ ▶️ Marco hire a bunch of temp workers to take all the extra load, and a lot of times you won’t

⏹️ ▶️ Marco see your usual person because their route has gotten narrowed during that time.

⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t know if I have a usual person Because I see UPS people come to the house all the time, and

⏹️ ▶️ John I can’t say that I’ve seen, I don’t even know, like I’m a little bit more familiar with our mail carriers,

⏹️ ▶️ John but even our mail carriers have changed a lot over the years, like there’s not a lot of consistency, but UPS

⏹️ ▶️ John or FedEx, I could not pick any of them out

⏹️ ▶️ Marco of

⏹️ ▶️ John a lineup.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco You’re missing out on a valuable relationship. Because once you get to know them, not only is it just nice

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to be a human being, but also they’ll carry it into your mudroom

⏹️ ▶️ Marco for you if you really want, like they’ll bring it into your door If your hands are full, you’re holding a dog in one hand maybe, they’ll

⏹️ ▶️ Marco bring treats for your dog. Now the UPS and the FedEx people, both, if they

⏹️ ▶️ Marco leave a package on our doorstep, they will leave a little dog treat on top of it because they know we have a dog who

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey appreciates those.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Isn’t

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that cute? That is adorable. So then Hofs can

⏹️ ▶️ John bring his package and I bring in mine. It’s adorable. Our current mail carrier is terrified of

⏹️ ▶️ John our dog, won’t even put the mail through the mail slot.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Oh, that’s too bad.

⏹️ ▶️ John So much for treat. I mean, my dog does sound savage. not, but she does bark a lot

⏹️ ▶️ John at the mail carrier. And so he won’t even put, you know, but I’m not here when the package people usually arrive. That’s

⏹️ ▶️ John why I wouldn’t recognize them. The only time I’m ever here is when I’m signing for an Apple thing for me, like once every couple of years.

⏹️ ▶️ John Right. And I expected to have to sign for this, but I did not.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, that’s also mildly alarming, but you know,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco a little bit.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s like, here’s this like $15,000 or I guess like a $10,000 package, 80 pounds and very bulky. So it’s hard to

⏹️ ▶️ Marco steal I suppose. I guess, but it’s also big and obvious. Like you can’t really hide that behind a bush or anything.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s not TV shaped.

⏹️ ▶️ John That’s true. Fair point. So it’s like strangely shaped. It looks like a big suitcase or something.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey What was the status of the inside box, John? Was it unscathed as you had hoped? It was not unscathed. I

⏹️ ▶️ John mean, the outside looked beat to hell, as you would imagine. No! The point of the outside box. The outside

⏹️ ▶️ John box, I mean, was incredibly dirty. Not wet, which is good, was my main concern. Not wet, but very,

⏹️ ▶️ John very

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey dirty.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey When you say the outside one, you’re talking about the brown

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John shimmering. Brown, yeah. The brown thing was

⏹️ ▶️ John incredibly dirty. serving its function, but it was also kind of dented in on various things. And on the inside, you could see the white

⏹️ ▶️ John box had some creases where they probably dropped it on a corner or something

⏹️ ▶️ John and it squished in. But that’s one of the reasons I opened it up, to make sure the computer inside there looked like it was

⏹️ ▶️ John fine. And I think everything’s fine. Anyway, that’s why you get AppleCare. So if it’s screwed up in some way…

⏹️ ▶️ Casey So are you going to take your box to the Apple store and ask for a refreshment

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John replacement? No, no. I mean,

⏹️ ▶️ John all of my boxes have some damage. They used to just ship them with no outer box And so I have a bunch of boxes

⏹️ ▶️ John upstairs that are fairly beat up And that’s part of the reason I have those extra g5 boxes that I’m getting rid of Because

⏹️ ▶️ John I got some g5 boxes that were in better condition than my personal g5 box I’m like, well, it’s better

⏹️ ▶️ John to have a box a nice condition, but It’ll be fine.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I just realized that I see I see my UPS delivery guy more often than I see most of my friends

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Mm-hmm. That’s kind of sad.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I think your your UPS delivery person might be your best friend All

⏹️ ▶️ Casey right, well, I am all kidding aside, I am very excited that your Mac Pro is in your house. I am

⏹️ ▶️ Casey a little distraught with your priority system that destiny is more important than playing with this new toy you’ve been waiting 10

⏹️ ▶️ Casey years for.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco More than that, almost 12. When did you get your 08? Because the 08 Mac Pro came out in February of 08.

⏹️ ▶️ John I tried to do the math, but I didn’t have the date that my 2008 Mac Pro arrived at my

⏹️ ▶️ John I only had my order date, so Casey has this on Twitter and I did the math and it’s like a little bit over 4,100 days.

⏹️ ▶️ John Because

⏹️ ▶️ Marco if you ordered it right when it came out, it was like February 08, so you would have gotten it like in March maybe.

⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t think I ordered it right when it came out. I think, I remember I found, someone found some old tweets from me because

⏹️ ▶️ John they were looking back what I was doing in 2008 and apparently I was waiting around to see if they

⏹️ ▶️ John would come out with a new display.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey Everything they’ll do again.

⏹️ ▶️ John Like the display I’m looking at now is the old one. I’m like, well maybe they’re gonna revise the display So I should wait a bit, but I had a,

⏹️ ▶️ John there was a clock because I had a Apple developer connection, ADC discount, hardware discount used

⏹️ ▶️ John to be able to pay for developer membership and there were tiers and the

⏹️ ▶️ John middle tier and the, and the top tier of the three tiers came with hardware discounts,

⏹️ ▶️ John uh, either just one or multiple. And so, uh, made a bunch of my coworkers slash

⏹️ ▶️ John friends would chip in and by the $500 a year, ADC select membership, each

⏹️ ▶️ John of five of us would pay $100. And then every year, one of the group would get to use the hardware discount,

⏹️ ▶️ John whose value would be vastly in excess of $100 if you bought a really expensive Mac. So I had that

⏹️ ▶️ John discount, I had to use it before the year expired, but I wanted to wait a little bit longer. So anyway,

⏹️ ▶️ John I do have the receipt from when I actually ordered it. So the math on that is about 4,100 days.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Real-time follow-up, my Mac Pro in 2008 shipped on February 7th. Yeah,

⏹️ ▶️ John obviously you were buying yours earlier than mine. Surprise. Yeah. And by the way,

⏹️ ▶️ John real time follow up on trunk space, you will be very disappointed to learn that the

⏹️ ▶️ John Accord, my year Accord and your Volvo XC90 have exactly

⏹️ ▶️ John the same number of cubic feet of trunk space, 15.8.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Wait, but hold on a second. Is that how many of the three rows of seats

⏹️ ▶️ Casey in

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John Aaron’s car? Not

⏹️ ▶️ John with the seats down, with

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey the seats up. That’s what I’m talking about

⏹️ ▶️ John with SUVs. They have dinky trunks

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey with seats up. The back

⏹️ ▶️ John row. Yeah, my seats

⏹️ ▶️ Casey go down too. Oh, come on. Of the three rows in our car, the

⏹️ ▶️ Casey backmost row is almost never up. So that’s got to be double your trunk space right there.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John Why is the back

⏹️ ▶️ John row never up? Why did you get a car with three rows of seats? Because there are occasions. For your seven

⏹️ ▶️ Casey other children? There are occasions when we want to put more than four people in the car. And in fact, if

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I’m not mistaken, you were in that very car in an instance. I sit in the front seat. I got long

⏹️ ▶️ Casey legs. Yes, I know. But you were in Aaron’s car. I was going to help her navigate. Very important

⏹️ ▶️ Casey job. That is a very important job, even though she’s very good with navigation. But nevertheless. Yeah, I

⏹️ ▶️ John didn’t help at all.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I can’t tell if that’s sarcasm.

⏹️ ▶️ John I did look at the weird touch screen a lot, though. Does that count for something? Sure.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey But anyway, but the point is, we do on occasion put extra people in the back. And

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I believe you were in the car when there were people in the back, back, back.

⏹️ ▶️ John I think it is fair to judge the car in its normal thing with none of the seats folded. And that’s

⏹️ ▶️ John it.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey But that isn’t

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco normal for me.

⏹️ ▶️ John Even your vast SUV that’s like two of my cars stacked on top of each other. Oh my god, John. has

⏹️ ▶️ John the same trunk space as mine.

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Cheese wheels

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⏹️ ▶️ Marco our show.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Hey, you know what, John? Your Mac Pro feet are removable. That’s exciting.

⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, so you know, during, between the last show and now, there have been more unboxing videos. There’s been iFixit

⏹️ ▶️ John Teardown. There have been Teardown videos, which were cool. I mean, iFixit does those as well. iFixit

⏹️ ▶️ John did a rub soft cheese up against the front of their computer, which was very upsetting and

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco honestly not a great idea.

⏹️ ▶️ John The best part about them doing that gag, you know, I mean, whatever, they did it, get some views, ha ha,

⏹️ ▶️ John right, was that the first step in their tear down video

⏹️ ▶️ John was them carefully removing all the cheese with one

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey of their little spudger tools, you know?

⏹️ ▶️ John Because that’s what you’re thinking when you see them do it, you’re like, someone, if that’s an expensive computer, someone is gonna

⏹️ ▶️ John have the job of going there with a Q-tip, or like scraping out all the little

⏹️ ▶️ John cheddar cheese or whatever it was from every little nook and cranny, because you can probably get it 100% clean, What a tedious job. So anyway,

⏹️ ▶️ John that’s what they did. And so as part of the tear down, we’ll

⏹️ ▶️ John put a link in the show notes to this particular step, they did take off the feet. Apparently

⏹️ ▶️ John there are hex screws that come from the top, like, cause the sort of, what

⏹️ ▶️ John would you call it? The tubes, there are tubes at the four corners of the Mac Pro frame, but the tubes don’t go straight

⏹️ ▶️ John from top to bottom. Once they enter, you know, they go straight in. And once they enter, they

⏹️ ▶️ John kink to the side. And in that kink there’s like a little hollow so you can go

⏹️ ▶️ John directly Sort of if you drew a straight line through the center of the foot that line would

⏹️ ▶️ John come up through Where the kink is and that’s where the hex screw goes in so you can just take a An allen key

⏹️ ▶️ John and stick it down in there and unscrew Uh the little feet the little feet do have rubber on the bottom of

⏹️ ▶️ John them as predicted and the little Stainless steel feel also have

⏹️ ▶️ John two little cute pins So that when you’re screwing the screw into them or unscrewing it that the foot

⏹️ ▶️ John doesn’t start rotating If you’ve ever screwed into a foot from the back or anything like that You know sometimes

⏹️ ▶️ John when you’re trying to loosen it or tighten it You may turn the little screw and instead of it unscrewing you will just turn the foot on the bottom But it’s

⏹️ ▶️ John got those two little pins to keep it still good attention to detail which also means that it will be

⏹️ ▶️ John very possible to Buy aftermarket wheels or first party wheels if Apple ever

⏹️ ▶️ John sells them and you want to pay 400 bucks or whatever and remove the feet And add wheels so if I ever

⏹️ ▶️ John do need to add wheels I’m really hoping that either Apple will sell it or there’ll be like some third-party replacement wheels that do not cost

⏹️ ▶️ John hundred dollars a piece.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Oh John, you can always be my Dixie Chicken.

Video routing

⏹️ ▶️ Casey All right. Anyway, the 580X has two HDMI ports on the back. That’s exciting, right?

⏹️ ▶️ John That is, I mean, it shouldn’t have been surprising. This information was sitting on the website, but it just never occurred to me, right? So

⏹️ ▶️ John I got the base graphics card and seeing people do these teardowns, you know, you’re not really paying too much attention because

⏹️ ▶️ John they’re taking it apart, you know, whatever. And a lot of the, unsurprisingly, a lot of the teardowns had the base graphics

⏹️ ▶️ John card as well, because they got like the cheapest one that they could take apart, right? And

⏹️ ▶️ John if you look at the back of the graphics card, there’s no ports that can connect to,

⏹️ ▶️ John you know, Pro Display XDR there. Just two HDMI ports on the 580X. Those are the

⏹️ ▶️ John only ports on the back of the video card. And so you’re like, well, wait a second, can I not attach

⏹️ ▶️ John the base video card to the Pro Display XDR? But you can, because

⏹️ ▶️ John that video card, that 580X is an MPX module. And I’m still

⏹️ ▶️ John trying to parse exactly what mpx module means in Apple’s parlance But as far as I can tell it means it’s got a connector

⏹️ ▶️ John like a video card that connects in a PCI slot But it’s got this second big connector, and I think that

⏹️ ▶️ John big connector essentially connects to Like a Thunderbolt 3

⏹️ ▶️ John bus inside the computer or something. I don’t know it’s not entirely clear to me But

⏹️ ▶️ John anyway, here’s how it works you the video card sits there, and it’s got us to HDMI ports on the back of it But when

⏹️ ▶️ John you get your Pro Display XDR, you connect the Thunderbolt 3 cable to the back of the display, and then you

⏹️ ▶️ John connect the other end of it to the Thunderbolt 3 port on your Mac Pro in the I-O

⏹️ ▶️ John card thing, the little I-O card at the top that has two USB-A and two Thunderbolt 3. That’s where

⏹️ ▶️ John you connect the display. And you’re like, well, how, the display isn’t even connected to the video card. How does it work? MPX

⏹️ ▶️ John modules, and this card in particular, I imagine this card actually has like a Thunderbolt controller on it. No one did a teardown

⏹️ ▶️ John on that. But I bet if you tore the 580X MPX module apart and looked at what’s inside there, you would

⏹️ ▶️ John see a regular, you know, the AMD GPU and the VRAM, and then another chip for a Thunderbolt controller.

⏹️ ▶️ John And that card connects to the Thunderbolt bus, and those ports are part of the Thunderbolt bus.

⏹️ ▶️ John And as we discussed last show, there’s just enough bandwidth in Thunderbolt 3

⏹️ ▶️ John to carry without display screen compression, 6K at 60 Hertz at 10

⏹️ ▶️ John bits per pixel, the maximum, you know, display, maximum bandwidth you need to display

⏹️ ▶️ John the highest color depth that the display can support, plus a little bit left over in the low-speed lanes for the USB 2

⏹️ ▶️ John hub slash firmware updates slash brightness control or whatever. So that’s

⏹️ ▶️ John how it works in theory. Obviously I don’t have a display to test that, but

⏹️ ▶️ John I had a moment of panic where I had to look at Apple’s website and be assured that yes, the 588X can drive the

⏹️ ▶️ John Thunderbolt display, just not from the video card itself. And I suppose you could plug in

⏹️ ▶️ John another monitor to the HDMI ports, maybe two more monitors. I mean, I don’t know.

⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t, I suppose I could test that, but I really don’t want to have three monitors hooked up to this thing,

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey but

⏹️ ▶️ John I’ll try it, this

⏹️ ▶️ Casey interesting experiment. This reminds me, I know we’ve brought this up several times on the show in the last six to seven

⏹️ ▶️ Casey years, but back in the day when the, what was it, the Voodoo cards, you know what I’m thinking of, right, Marco,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey where- Yeah,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco 3DFX, Voodoo, yeah. This was like the very first 3D accelerators because they were separate cards.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Like it would have your 2D card that came with your computer probably and then if you wanted

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to add 3d acceleration to it you would add like this 3d second the second card that was just

⏹️ ▶️ Marco 3d processing

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Right and but the best part was there was this little stubby VGA cable that you would connect on the exterior

⏹️ ▶️ Casey of your computer And there would be a VGA in on the 3d accelerator in a VGA

⏹️ ▶️ Casey out And so you would go the output from your stock video card into the input

⏹️ ▶️ Casey of the 3d accelerator and then you would plug your monitor into the output of the 3D accelerator. It was such a hack job, but

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it worked

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco beautifully.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, because the 2D card would render, in whatever portion of the screen would be

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the 3D accelerator part, it would just render a blue square or something. And then the 3D card would then overlay just

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that section of the video signal with its accelerated part.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey It was so wild. I remember the first time we got a Sound Blaster, like Sound Blaster 32, oh, those

⏹️ ▶️ Casey were the days. God, I’m so old.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Sound Blaster 16, man, what are you doing but the off 32. Yeah.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Oh no, I had that. I had that first, but then I was excited to get the 32 man. That was my jam. The

⏹️ ▶️ Marco funny thing is the author to, I don’t think was 32 bit. I think it was just like 32 voice or something. It was some other

⏹️ ▶️ Marco metric.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Oh man, we’re so old. All right. Why don’t you tell me about black magic eGPUs please?

⏹️ ▶️ John This is actually, this is actually relevant to what you were just discussing. So Andy,

⏹️ ▶️ John Sarah wrote in to say, I think it’s instructive to look at black magic eGPUs says they are the only non Apple devices

⏹️ ▶️ John listed as compatible with the pro display XDR. Again, we discussed that last week, you’ve got this big display with a lot of pixels,

⏹️ ▶️ John and also it has other ports on it. And also, you want to have some kind of software control and firmware update

⏹️ ▶️ John or whatever, how do you connect anything to it that allows enough bandwidth to get a picture, plus

⏹️ ▶️ John a bunch of other signal for the other ports, there are limited options as we discussed. So

⏹️ ▶️ John these egps is like a box that connects to, you know, a MacBook Pro They always show it with

⏹️ ▶️ John or whatever like a big powerful GPU inside an external box that connects by a Thunderbolt

⏹️ ▶️ John and then out of that Box comes usually another Thunderbolt that connects to display in the case of the XDR.

⏹️ ▶️ John So how does that work? How do you how do you drive that monitor from the GPU? So

⏹️ ▶️ John what Andy says is how they do it is they take to display port outputs from the GPU So this is the GPUs inside the

⏹️ ▶️ John little box to you know To display port cables feed them into an Intel Titan rich Thunderbolt controller

⏹️ ▶️ John again Like I said a Thunderbolt controller in there with the GPU Maybe not on the same card, but in the box which then

⏹️ ▶️ John combines the two display port outputs and transmits them to display over a thunderbolt 3 connection so we’ll have a link in the show

⏹️ ▶️ John notes to a sort of I fix it like teardown of the Black magic that shows how it works

⏹️ ▶️ John and he says that hobbyists replicate this functionality with their own GPUs by using a thunderbolt 3 add-in

⏹️ ▶️ John card and we’ll put a link to that in the show notes And a link to an example setup. It’s a quite a Frankenstein

⏹️ ▶️ John monster So it’s like if you want to do this as a hobbyist you get some GPU that’s like not supported

⏹️ ▶️ John You know, you know, you can’t put it inside your Mac or whatever So you get this big GPU and then you get this other

⏹️ ▶️ John card. That’s it. That’s filling the role that that Titan Ridge Thunderbolt controller and you connect those

⏹️ ▶️ John two to each other and then you connect from this Thunderbolt card out to the monitor and

⏹️ ▶️ John From and to your Mac, right? It’s Not something that I want to try to do my

⏹️ ▶️ John own like it’s close to being a hackintosh But it shows you essentially what you need you need somehow

⏹️ ▶️ John to make this video card render all those pixels and somehow get that information on

⏹️ ▶️ John to a Thunderbolt 3 bus the same bus that your computer is connected to that also tunnels through the USB

⏹️ ▶️ John from your computer so that is that is quite a feat I imagine you could do the exact

⏹️ ▶️ John same setup that these people are doing externally for their like Mac minis and their MacBook Pros I imagine you do that

⏹️ ▶️ John same setup inside a Mac Pro I mean it you know surely it would work the same and

⏹️ ▶️ John there’s plenty of room inside that box but it would be gross and I would worry about cooling and obviously

⏹️ ▶️ John the more elegant solution is to have an MPX module which is exactly what I have in the 580 but it’s just a crappy

⏹️ ▶️ John GPU right so if I can get a better GPU in an MPX module which will

⏹️ ▶️ John doesn’t have any other weird power cables or anything it’s got the two connectors one to the PCI bus and one to the Thunderbolt

⏹️ ▶️ John and power or whatever all in a nice sleek passively cooled black thing

⏹️ ▶️ John that’s that’s what I’m looking for if I have to to hack something up. It’s good to know there are a lot of options

⏹️ ▶️ John though.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco This, I think this whole thing between this and the last follow-up point, it kind of underlines like

⏹️ ▶️ Marco quite how complicated it is these days in computers that we have these

⏹️ ▶️ Marco USB-C Thunderbolt 3 ports and we can plug in

⏹️ ▶️ Marco our monitors to any of them on like the laptops that have USB-C

⏹️ ▶️ Marco on any Mac that has USB-C Like, they just kind of all do all the same things. And you

⏹️ ▶️ Marco gotta figure like the complexity of how that’s routed internally between the GPU, the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Thunderbolt controller, and all the various lanes and things that go to all these ports,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that’s gotta be really complicated. And I think that’s one of the reasons why we didn’t have external

⏹️ ▶️ Marco 5K monitors for so long, because like that’s just complex and requires a lot of craziness. And we had

⏹️ ▶️ Marco 5K iMacs for long before that because they didn’t need to deal with that. because the original 5K iMac, it

⏹️ ▶️ Marco couldn’t output to another 5K display. So it only had to deal with itself internally. It had the whole custom

⏹️ ▶️ Marco T-con thing going on. But I actually have no concept of how

⏹️ ▶️ Marco modern architecture of Thunderbolt and DisplayPort and video cards and everything, how that handles this

⏹️ ▶️ Marco internally of you have a GPU in your Mac Pro and you have these USB

⏹️ ▶️ Marco holes on the I-O card that’s on the other side of the computer, basically, and you can plug your monitor into

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that and it somehow figures out to correctly route this massive high bandwidth

⏹️ ▶️ Marco display signal over some bus over to that. Like, that’s crazy to me.

⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, well, that’s what it is. It’s a bus, and if you can get on the bus, you can get the data through. Like, you know,

⏹️ ▶️ John part of the reason we didn’t have these larger displays is because we were at bandwidth limits. So until Thunderbolt 3, there just wasn’t enough

⏹️ ▶️ John headroom to do that without having multiple cables, which was very inelegant. So, you know, it was done. You know, that’s what the

⏹️ ▶️ John Mac has, essentially. The other factor in this is rendering a 6K frame buffer

⏹️ ▶️ John on a video card. A lot of video cards, it’s not that they were too wimpy to do it, it’s that they just

⏹️ ▶️ John were not designed with the idea that this would be a thing that you would do, especially gaming cards because no one was gaming at those resolutions

⏹️ ▶️ John when these cards were designed many years ago. So some of them, to drive a 6K display,

⏹️ ▶️ John would tile it and render multiple frame buffers and then recombine them, which is also what I think the 5K

⏹️ ▶️ John iMac did, at least with the first set of GPUs. These days, the modern GPUs, especially the ones that Apple is using,

⏹️ ▶️ John assuming don’t have to tile to display, you would never know it’s tiling. It’s not like a thing that’s visible to you. It’s just like an internal

⏹️ ▶️ John implementation detail, just showing that sort of the assumptions of like, how big is our maximum

⏹️ ▶️ John frame buffer that we rendered to? Those assumptions have to change in

⏹️ ▶️ John a world with 6K displays, and eventually 8K displays will keep pushing that limit as the bus bandwidth goes up. But

⏹️ ▶️ John yeah, it’s complicated. It’s very high bandwidth. But I think it’s also cool in that you don’t

⏹️ ▶️ John have to have like this dedicated miniature computer where the only possible place you can connect

⏹️ ▶️ John the display is directly to the card, because that’s just the way it works.

⏹️ ▶️ John Having sort of an adding card that’s more like the 3DFX model where there’s a GPU that does a particular

⏹️ ▶️ John job when it comes and renders the frame, but when it comes time to get that signal from your computer to the display,

⏹️ ▶️ John it just sticks it on the bus with all the rest of the stuff. And it’s one unified, very high speed bus that you can use for

⏹️ ▶️ John storage you know, for any, you know, high speed peripherals and also for your

⏹️ ▶️ John display.

VR on Mac Pro

⏹️ ▶️ Casey All right. Now, John, I hear you’re looking to run VR off of your Mac Pro.

⏹️ ▶️ John I am not, and nobody probably should. I was.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco Yeah, yeah.

⏹️ ▶️ John Marco was looking, you know, because Tiff is interested in playing the new VR Half-Life game, which looks really cool.

⏹️ ▶️ John And, you know, Marco’s looking for an excuse to perhaps buy a Mac Pro.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, I was thinking, like, all right, so, you know, we were watching these videos about the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco new Alyx game, the upcoming Alyx game. and we figured we’d get the Valve VR

⏹️ ▶️ Marco thing and plug it into something. And like Tiff has a gaming laptop, but I’m guessing

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you want desktop performance to run a high-end VR headset. Just throwing out a guess there, right? Is that, John, is that a

⏹️ ▶️ Marco safe bet?

⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t know what her laptop is like. There are actually powerful laptop CPUs, and I also don’t know what the Valve

⏹️ ▶️ John VR system is like, and if there’s any processing on board it, but yeah, in general, you would want a powerful desktop

⏹️ ▶️ John to do VR stuff.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, she has some kind of Razer thing, but it’s still like a 15 inch mid-weight laptop, so I don’t think it’s got some

⏹️ ▶️ Marco massive beefy GPU. Like it has like a good, I think it has a good GPU for a laptop,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco but that’s kind of grating on a curve, isn’t it? So I figured like, we’d probably want something on a desktop. Now there’s eGPU

⏹️ ▶️ Marco support in things. I don’t know if this laptop supports it. I don’t know if maybe

⏹️ ▶️ Marco our iMac Pros would do it. Who knows? But that seems like probably too

⏹️ ▶️ Marco much trouble. And so I thought, well, maybe I should get a Mac Pro. because then

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I could put in a PC video card just like what you were talking about last week. And by the way,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco could you just do all of your PC gaming in a VR headset? Would that solve your monitor problem?

⏹️ ▶️ John I’ve never done VR and I assume I would get motion sick.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey Most likely.

⏹️ ▶️ John But yeah, you could do what you’re saying, but that’s like the most expensive way to get into VR.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, anyway, so I was like, all right, so I went over and fortunately the eight terabyte

⏹️ ▶️ Marco option became available since we last recorded. So I was able to see what my proposed true cost

⏹️ ▶️ Marco would be to the configuration I would want. And I think before a Pro Display

⏹️ ▶️ Marco XDR, it was something like $12,000. And

⏹️ ▶️ Marco ideally, I don’t think I’d even want the base video card. I think I’d want the one that’s one model up that isn’t out yet, the 9700, 5700, whatever it

⏹️ ▶️ Marco is. Yeah. Well,

⏹️ ▶️ John you said you’re gonna add a PC video card. So it would be $12,000 for the computer that’s gonna hold the video card and $350 for a very fast gaming video

⏹️ ▶️ John card. Right, and then I realized,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco well, how much does a gaming PC cost? And I went and looked, and apparently a really good gaming PC is like $2,000, $2,500, like

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s like. Not even, you can make your

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John own gaming PC

⏹️ ▶️ John for like $1,800 and it would do VR fine. Right, and so I realized, okay,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco this is like five to 10 times the cost just building

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a gaming PC. So yeah, I think when the time comes, when this Half-Life game comes out

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and we wanna play it, I think what we’re going to do is just either build or buy

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a regular, nice gaming PC for

⏹️ ▶️ Marco an eighth of the cost of a Mac Pro.

⏹️ ▶️ John But we’ll see. And it can get a lot smaller too, like it won’t have to be behemoth the size of the Mac because you know what you’re gonna

⏹️ ▶️ John have in it, so it could be a much smaller thing.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I mean, we might wanna just try it on Tiff’s laptop first, although honestly I don’t think it would go well.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John Like again, it’s just a laptop. You should

⏹️ ▶️ John see if Tiff’s laptop GPU is even as powerful as the one that’s in the iMac, because her laptop

⏹️ ▶️ John might be able to support the cooling of the ones that’s in the current iMac Pro.

⏹️ ▶️ John The current iMac Pro, as we said in the last show, has a significantly more powerful GPU

⏹️ ▶️ John than the base GPU on the Mac Pro. So it’s no slouch. And maybe you could cool it in a giant

⏹️ ▶️ John gaming PC. But anyway, I think that could handle VR. I honestly don’t

⏹️ ▶️ John know what the demands of the Alex game are. I looked at it, but I don’t know what the, if it’s a higher resolution of the VR games,

⏹️ ▶️ John is it really going to tax your system or would you be fine with anything?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco All right, real time follow up. Tiff’s laptop is a Razer Blade 15. The GPU is the Nvidia

⏹️ ▶️ Marco GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q. I don’t know what most of that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco means. I do

⏹️ ▶️ John not know the specs of that, but it sounds relatively recent.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco Yes,

⏹️ ▶️ John it’s from this past summer. And, you know, could be kind of beefy. I just, I’m not familiar with Nvidia’s model numbers

⏹️ ▶️ John to be able to tell you how powerful that is compared to the Vega 64 that’s in the iMac

⏹️ ▶️ John Pro.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Oh, and the reality is I don’t think the iMac Pro is gonna be a contender here, knowing Apple and knowing

⏹️ ▶️ Marco how old these

⏹️ ▶️ John things are. You don’t have the good GPUs in your iMac Pros anyway, right, you’ve got older ones and they have done GPU

⏹️ ▶️ John upgrades and you got the base GPU both times, right?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I have the Vega 56, I think I got TIFF the bigger one, the 64, but I’m not positive. Anyway,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco regardless, I don’t think this would be going on the iMacs, I think this would be going on either her current gaming PC

⏹️ ▶️ Marco or a theoretically new gaming PC with a bigger GPU.

⏹️ ▶️ John You might want to clear out the big glass table thing and let her have free reign of the middle of that room so

⏹️ ▶️ John she doesn’t bump into things. Oh, yeah,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco right. You need like a space for VR, don’t you?

⏹️ ▶️ John Well, I don’t know. Again, I don’t know how much movement this game asks of you, but it’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco nice to have. I assume you probably want to do VR in a room that doesn’t have a lot of stuff around that you care about, right?

⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t think she’s going to be running around, but the Valve VR thing

⏹️ ▶️ John has things you hold in your hand, right? I think she’s gonna be, at the very least, waving her hands around and rotating and looking

⏹️ ▶️ John up and down and all that stuff.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, I think this needs a dedicated room. All right, so first we gotta buy a new house.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John Then we have to find a gaming PC. It’s always

⏹️ ▶️ John the first step in any product purchase.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco It’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco still gonna be cheaper than the Mac Pro. All

⏹️ ▶️ Casey right, so anyway, so we are or are not, we’re not playing any VR on

⏹️ ▶️ Casey the Mac Pro, but let’s say you wanted to, John. How would you do that?

⏹️ ▶️ John Stetson Gafford had a little bit of follow up on connecting monitors

⏹️ ▶️ John to your computer while carrying something other than just video. And apparently there is a newish standard for PCs

⏹️ ▶️ John called a virtual link, all one word, capital L, which basically involves adding USB-C ports with

⏹️ ▶️ John both display port and USB data to PC graphics cards and laptops. The primary purpose of this is

⏹️ ▶️ John to support VR headsets over a single cable, because as you can imagine, a VR headset needs video signal, but also there’s

⏹️ ▶️ John all the controls and the accelerometers and position sensors in the headset. And then if you have little things

⏹️ ▶️ John in your hands a lot of the early VR stuff had this sort of you know huge

⏹️ ▶️ John Rats nest of cables that would come off of the headsets They make wireless ones too, but they’re usually not as good like the big beefy ones

⏹️ ▶️ John They would have wires and you know fewer wires is better So virtual link is a standard to

⏹️ ▶️ John put picture plus a bunch of other stuff over a single nice small cable

⏹️ ▶️ John He goes on to say I’m not sure if this connection will be fully supported by the pro display XDR But it does support both DisplayPort and USB

⏹️ ▶️ John C 3.1 over a single USB C style connector I don’t think it’s Thunderbolt. He doesn’t say

⏹️ ▶️ John I didn’t look into it. We will put a link in the show It’s to a longer story about this that I obviously didn’t read entirely

⏹️ ▶️ John The catch is that as far as I can tell it’s only Nvidia RTX series cards that are currently included in this port

⏹️ ▶️ John But AMD is on a list of supported suppliers. So there’s possibility. There’ll be support by other people So Virtual Link,

⏹️ ▶️ John as the name suggests, seems like it’s mostly aimed at VR headsets, but really it’s a general purpose

⏹️ ▶️ John way to put a bunch more data over a single cable. And

⏹️ ▶️ John VR, notoriously, is low resolution as compared to displays, and certainly low resolution

⏹️ ▶️ John as compared to a 6K display. So I don’t think this probably has aspirations

⏹️ ▶️ John to be a solution for something like Apple, but it’s good to know that they’re

⏹️ ▶️ John making some progress here because I think this is going to be the trend that setting aside Apple’s

⏹️ ▶️ John displays that always have some kind of like hub inside them or whatever,

⏹️ ▶️ John putting having a display having a cable that only carries video is such a throwback

⏹️ ▶️ John like even HDMI you know carries Ethernet and audio and all that other stuff over it and so Thunderbolt 3

⏹️ ▶️ John carries anything you want over it and a virtual link carries USB and DisplayPort.

Non-Retina Mac Pro

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Excellent. Kyle Stay has some information about

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Apple Thunderbolt adapters, and I guess this is within the context of connecting your cinema display

⏹️ ▶️ Casey to the new Mac Pro, is that right?

⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah. So there’s two contexts in which we were talking about a series of dongles and adapters

⏹️ ▶️ John to try to get from my 2008 computer to my 2019 computer. One of them involved going from Thunderbolt 3

⏹️ ▶️ John to 2. Stephen Hackett assured me that if you want to do that for FireWire 800 to

⏹️ ▶️ John Thunderbolt 2 to Thunderbolt 3 that that chain works because he’s done it But many people including

⏹️ ▶️ John Kyle said if you are trying to get your mini DisplayPort monitor

⏹️ ▶️ John to connect to your Mac Pro Thunderbolt thing even though you can physically

⏹️ ▶️ John make a chain of wires that will do it It will not work because the Apple’s Thunderbolt 3

⏹️ ▶️ John to 2 adapter cannot carry DisplayPort He says he learned this after he purchased one in an open box

⏹️ ▶️ John deal from Best Buy for that very purpose And had to return it and assumes the person who originally purchased it also

⏹️ ▶️ John returned it for the same reason And there are adapters that do it by the way like Marco mentioned, you know

⏹️ ▶️ John the various Dongles that have HDMI out that go from Thunderbolt and there there are dedicated

⏹️ ▶️ John ones that just have either USB C or Thunderbolt 3 and that have many display

⏹️ ▶️ John port at work. I have a little dock for my MacBook Pro that you know

⏹️ ▶️ John connects with a single Thunderbolt cable. Well, it’s not actually Thunderbolt. It’s a USB C dock Anyway, it’s so confusing.

⏹️ ▶️ John I hate talking about this because whenever anyone else talks about it half the time They say if it’s that little oval connector

⏹️ ▶️ John that works both ways It’s USB see whether it’s Thunderbolt or not because people think of the physical

⏹️ ▶️ John form factor as the defining characteristic But as we all know you can’t usually look

⏹️ ▶️ John at the end of a cable and know Exactly what that cable is carrying or what it’s being cast

⏹️ ▶️ John asked to do

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey and

⏹️ ▶️ John anyway Um, so there are adapters, but they cost money and I don’t have any of them and I’m not going to buy them

⏹️ ▶️ John for the hopefully short period of time when I will be without my big fat display.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey So hold on. So you put, or somebody provided to you and you put in the show notes, a link to USB-C to mini

⏹️ ▶️ Casey display port adapter. And then there’s like another 300 characters in this name because it’s Amazon

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and the very first bullet is this adapter will not work with the Apple Thunderbolt

⏹️ ▶️ Casey cinema display. Isn’t that what we’re talking about?

⏹️ ▶️ John we’re talking about? No, they’re saying it won’t work with a there. There are Apple Thunderbolt displays

⏹️ ▶️ John in the Thunderbolt two era that have connected member. Do you remember Thunderbolt used to use the same connector as many

⏹️ ▶️ John display part? Yes. Do you remember that? That’s what they’re talking about. If you have a monitor that has

⏹️ ▶️ John a Thunderbolt two looking cable coming from it, and you’re like, I’m going to connect that up to my Thunderbolt three supported

⏹️ ▶️ John laptop and drive it. No, you’re not. You’re not going to do that,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco right? Wait, what about the one that came right before that that has the exact same connector

⏹️ ▶️ Marco but is not Thunderbolt it’s mini display port

⏹️ ▶️ John right that one will work great and which one do you have I have an ancient one way before

⏹️ ▶️ John Thunderbolt even existed Thunderbolt did not exist when my monitor came out so there’s no Thunderbolt issues whatsoever it is

⏹️ ▶️ John plain old mini display port and that would work with this connector because this connector connects to

⏹️ ▶️ John your Thunderbolt 3 port or USB-C port and outputs plain old mini display port which

⏹️ ▶️ John uses the same physical connector is Thunderbolt 2.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey So if you had one of these you could plug your ancient… Absolutely.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah. I believe what you the one you need is the LED display not

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the Thunderbolt display right?

⏹️ ▶️ John The 24 inch LED display that’s

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco the one. No no

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the 27.

⏹️ ▶️ John They’re all 27. No,

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco there’s a 24 inch LED display I have it at work.

⏹️ ▶️ John But there was a 27 inch LED display that came right before

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the Thunderbolt 1 that look the same I think but they flirt

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I mean this is

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John the 24 inch does

⏹️ ▶️ John look very similar to the 27 inch anyway my thing is so ancient it’s me but I’m not gonna buy this adapter

⏹️ ▶️ John is 14 bucks like it’s not an expensive adapter but I don’t I’m not gonna buy it out of me why not

⏹️ ▶️ John because my display is gonna come but then a week or two what about that

⏹️ ▶️ John week or two I thought be carrying my gaming monitor back and forth between two desks connecting

⏹️ ▶️ John it with HDMI maybe You’re

⏹️ ▶️ Casey a monster.

Monitor cables (really)

⏹️ ▶️ Casey What are the odds that hardware and software would support connecting two

⏹️ ▶️ Casey cables, dedicating one to video and the other from different internal lanes, to full bandwidth Thunderbolt

⏹️ ▶️ Casey or USB? It seems super unlikely, but also totally Apple. This is from David Schwitz.

⏹️ ▶️ John This is kind of what I was getting at earlier, that multi-cable solutions,

⏹️ ▶️ John like Apple has always wanted multifunctional solutions to connecting

⏹️ ▶️ John quote-unquote displays. There’s a long history of Apple displays ever since the very first

⏹️ ▶️ John one that did something other than just show a picture of connecting them to Apple computers

⏹️ ▶️ John and making all the proper electrical connections. They had monitors with ADB ports

⏹️ ▶️ John in them. They had monitors with speakers in them, eventually monitors with USB

⏹️ ▶️ John hubs inside them, all sorts of other stuff. And at various

⏹️ ▶️ John times there have been these sometimes comical hydras of, you know,

⏹️ ▶️ John plastic and rubber connectors that start as one big fat cable and

⏹️ ▶️ John break out into these little tendrils that you have to plug into all the right places to get your thing to work. Even the monitor I’m

⏹️ ▶️ John sitting in front of today, this 23 inch Apple Cinema display, which connects with quote unquote mini display

⏹️ ▶️ John port. If you follow the wire out of the back of this computer, there’s a power connector that goes directly into power. Then there’s

⏹️ ▶️ John another cable that goes to, I believe, big white breakout box the size of like a Mac

⏹️ ▶️ John Mini and It’s a little bit smaller than that and out of that comes a USB

⏹️ ▶️ John connector. I think maybe an audio connector. I forget and Maybe

⏹️ ▶️ John another power connector to power the brick and then the mini display port like there’s lots more wires

⏹️ ▶️ John down there than you think Because on the back of my monitor, I do have a bunch of USB ports. In fact, I connect

⏹️ ▶️ John My phone charging my lighting cable to that thing right because it is also a USB I

⏹️ ▶️ John don’t even know what it is USB 1.1 hub, whatever the hell it is. Maybe maybe it’s USB 2.0. I don’t remember

⏹️ ▶️ John And that’s not a very Apple like solution Apple doesn’t like solutions like that. Do you remember the display? I think Mark was just talking

⏹️ ▶️ John about it the first one they came out with sort of their rat tail magsafe connector on it It was one cable coming down

⏹️ ▶️ John and then there was a magsafe little dongle and then there was a USB connector And then there was whatever the actual

⏹️ ▶️ John display connector was I have that’s what my 24 inch Apple LED a cinema display

⏹️ ▶️ John has at work. And I don’t have anything to connect the MagSafe to, obviously, because I don’t, I’ve never

⏹️ ▶️ John had a MagSafe capable computer at work. I went from a Mac Pro Tower, no MagSafe,

⏹️ ▶️ John to a 2017 MacBook Pro, no MagSafe. So I always have to find something to do with that MagSafe

⏹️ ▶️ John thing. And it’s magnetic, so I don’t want it like leaning against a wire. Like, it’s fairly powerfully

⏹️ ▶️ John magnetic. I don’t want it leaning against some other little delicate cable that’s going, you know, so I’m always like tucking it under.

⏹️ ▶️ John It’s very awkward, right? Apple doesn’t like those solutions. The sort

⏹️ ▶️ John of coolest and worst simultaneous solution that Apple’s ever done in recent

⏹️ ▶️ John memory for that is another ADC, not Apple Developer Connection, but Apple Display Connector.

⏹️ ▶️ John And I have one of those up in the attic. It was, I have the 23-inch Apple Cinema Display, one

⏹️ ▶️ John of Apple’s, I think Apple’s first 23-inch LCD display. It followed the 22-inch version of it. It

⏹️ ▶️ John was the one with the clear feet, do you remember that? It was like an easel where it had like a

⏹️ ▶️ John little kickstand that went out the back, and then in the front were two big, beefy, clear feet. It was in the

⏹️ ▶️ John sort of clear plastic around the pinstripe, white plastic era of Apple design.

⏹️ ▶️ John And that, that huge monitor, huge for the time, 23 inch, can you even imagine? People used to come over to my house

⏹️ ▶️ John and be like, what is that, is that a TV? I’m like, it’s a computer monitor.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John No, that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco was amazing, because that was the era that one of my friends and I would go to Micro Center to buy PC components in the late

⏹️ ▶️ Marco 90s. that was the those were like what was what was like in the Mac room and you’d like

⏹️ ▶️ Marco sneak over to the macro micro center and you’d be like whoa look at that giant monitor yeah

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco blew

⏹️ ▶️ John us away yeah like it not only was it not only was it giant like because you know people there was 21 inch crt

⏹️ ▶️ John but 21 crts were huge like they just you took up the whole room they were they were deeper than they were wide

⏹️ ▶️ John and they were four by three and here was this more letterbox i don’t know if it was exactly 16 by nine but more letterbox

⏹️ ▶️ John oriented thing that was it looked much bigger than it was And of course it was a flat screen which

⏹️ ▶️ John wasn’t a thing in really it wasn’t particularly popular in TVs either so people just didn’t even believe that you had the thing hooked up to your

⏹️ ▶️ John computer it was amazing and coming out of the back of that monitor

⏹️ ▶️ John was a single cable that connected to your computer and that’s it there was no power

⏹️ ▶️ John cable there was no there was just one cable connect from the display into your computer

⏹️ ▶️ John into my power mac g3 and that was like a miracle it’s like how How does that even work?

⏹️ ▶️ John How is it, how are you powering the monitor? And the monitor had like, you know,

⏹️ ▶️ John whatever, did it have USB ports on it? I don’t remember what other bus features it had, but anyway,

⏹️ ▶️ John it was basically, it was an Apple proprietary connector that carried power and essentially DVI and whatever other

⏹️ ▶️ John things they were tunneling over, I forget what they were, I don’t know if it was a microphone or, God, my memory’s so bad. Someone just pull up the webpage

⏹️ ▶️ John and find out what else is in there. But the important part is that it was power and DVI over a single connector.

⏹️ ▶️ John but that’s definitely like old Apple. Like it’s super cool. Like nobody else had a computer

⏹️ ▶️ John like that. It was like a miracle, but you can never find anything with an ADC connector. Right?

⏹️ ▶️ John It was Apple proprietary. And if you wanted to get another video card

⏹️ ▶️ John to connect your awesome monitor, you need to have one with an ADC connector. And if you didn’t, it was a series of adapters

⏹️ ▶️ John and you could plug it into a box that plugged into power and that had DVI coming out of it. But it’s like, that

⏹️ ▶️ John ruins the whole thing. That ruins the elegant solution. So the Pro Display XDR is in the era of the

⏹️ ▶️ John new Apple that is much more hesitant to make up its own weird proprietary connectors, but

⏹️ ▶️ John they’re also pushing the limits of displays connected to regular people computers.

⏹️ ▶️ John And that’s why you don’t find lots of quote unquote PC video cards with Thunderbolt 3 ports in the back.

⏹️ ▶️ John And in fact, even the ones that Apple is shipping do not have Thunderbolt 3 ports in the back. They’re instead in these MPX modules

⏹️ ▶️ John that connect, that have multiple connectors, one for PCI and one for everything else. They connect into your Thunderbolt 3 port

⏹️ ▶️ John that lets you connect your monitor to a port that’s not even on the video card. So I get a little

⏹️ ▶️ John bit of a whiff of that old thing, but this is, again, on-brand for me since I did buy that computer and did

⏹️ ▶️ John use it with a single cable connecting it to my Power Mac G3 for years and years.

⏹️ ▶️ John I went from a Power Mac G3 to a Power Mac G5.

⏹️ ▶️ John So again, on-brand for waiting a long time between computers. And before the Power Mac G3, it was an SE30,

⏹️ ▶️ John so there’s some big gaps in there.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Goodness. Any other followup?

⏹️ ▶️ John No, I mean, I suppose, you know, I hate to drag this Mac Pro stuff

⏹️ ▶️ John on, but I don’t have all the components. It isn’t set up yet. When I take it out of the box and find out it doesn’t work

⏹️ ▶️ John or it’s broken on the inside or something, you know, like the saga will continue, but. Oh no. Right

⏹️ ▶️ John now, it’s Schrodinger’s Mac Pro. I have no idea what state it is

⏹️ ▶️ John inside that box. I’m assuming everything’s fine. You

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⏹️ ▶️ Casey I would like to add one actual piece of follow up. I am personally

⏹️ ▶️ Casey deeply upset at you, John. And I’m deeply upset because you did not mention to me

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that one of the characters in Watchmen drives a Grand National.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a Grand National?

⏹️ ▶️ John You said that and now I’m trying to think, who are you talking about? Marco!

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Marco, you’re killing

⏹️ ▶️ John me. Who are you talking about? Is that a band? I

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey know what a Grand National is. I know what it looks like, but I’m thinking back to the show.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey It’s in the very first episode, for goodness sakes. Is it a boat?

⏹️ ▶️ Casey No, not Lookingglass. The woman that’s doing all the investigating. Oh, Angela?

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John Yes,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey whatever. Sister Knight or whatever her name is.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John She drives a Grand National.

⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, she doesn’t spend a lot of time driving in the series, so it’s not didn’t stand out to me,

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco but

⏹️ ▶️ John okay.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco It sounds

⏹️ ▶️ Marco like a van or something.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey No. Okay. So if you’re not aware, the Grand National is this like, it’s not a halo

⏹️ ▶️ Casey car, but it is it’s like this mythical mythical beast. And what it was,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it was a V6 on the inline six, right? It was a some sort of six-cylinder Buick with

⏹️ ▶️ Casey a tremendous turbocharger on

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it. A Buick? By the way, if you search for Grand National, the first result from the Siri knowledge

⏹️ ▶️ Marco is, the 2019 Grand National was the 172nd annual running of the Grand National horse race at

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Aintree Racecourse near Liverpool, England. So I’m guessing that’s not what you’re talking about?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco You’re not talking about a horse race?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey Or a boat? No.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey No.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco So it’s a

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Buick then? It’s a Buick Regal.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco Why does

⏹️ ▶️ Marco anybody care then?

⏹️ ▶️ John Because it was amazing. They care because it was an ugly American car that actually had a big engine in

⏹️ ▶️ John it and looked like just a plain old ugly American car. But actually, it was cool. Oh my god, I’m looking at

⏹️ ▶️ Marco pictures of this thing. But actually, it’s not that cool. It

⏹️ ▶️ Casey wasn’t actually that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco cool. It’s not at all cool. Anyway. I’m pretty sure my grandparents had something like this when I was a child,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and even they didn’t think it was cool at the time. But they

⏹️ ▶️ John didn’t have a Grand National. They probably had a plain old Buick Regal, which was crap.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey We’ll put the Doug DiMiro review in the show notes.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey And I have watched it, although I don’t recall it because I think I watched it many moons ago when it came out. But the short, short

⏹️ ▶️ Casey version is it was this extreme, well, I believe it to be extremely rare Buick,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey a two-door Coupe Buick that was extremely fast for the day. And

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it is one of those cars that, like the STI or the WRX

⏹️ ▶️ Casey was for people of our generation before, or the Skyline, perhaps even better. One of those cars

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that everyone heard of, but nobody had ever seen. Like the Neo Geo.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Right, yeah, actually, yes. My cousin has one. Yeah, sure. Yeah, sure he does. So anyway, so

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it was kind of like that. It was a six-cylinder car with a tremendous turbocharger on it,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey always automatic, which was unfortunate. But they were considered to be, and actually, a Kham in the

⏹️ ▶️ Casey chat have summarized it really well. It’s one of the first from the factory sleeper cars. So it doesn’t look fast, but it was really

⏹️ ▶️ Casey fast. And it’s extremely rare, and most normal gearheads

⏹️ ▶️ Casey slash petrolheads really have a special place in their hearts for them. And I was expecting somebody would

⏹️ ▶️ Casey have told me that Sister Knight, whatever her name is, drives a Grand National. And of all

⏹️ ▶️ Casey people, John, you should have told me. And no.

⏹️ ▶️ John I didn’t think you needed to be notified.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco It does seem like these are very rare, because it’s like looking at listings, it looks like they were all 1987. They were

⏹️ ▶️ Marco only a couple of years, I believe.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey And it seems like the going rate for them

⏹️ ▶️ Marco is like 30 grand still for a Buick from 1987. So that must be desirable to somebody.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, I think I’d rather have a boat.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey This one’s 86 that regular car reviews did. Fair warning, regular

⏹️ ▶️ Casey car reviews is interesting to say the least, but which we’ve talked about in the

⏹️ ▶️ Casey past, I believe. I haven’t decided if it’s a shtick or not that the dude is

⏹️ ▶️ Casey terrible. But anyways, you can, if you’re interested, watch these videos in the show notes.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey but i really i just don’t want to stop talking to you to say you keep watching watchman who watches the watchmen


⏹️ ▶️ Marco Also, real-time follow-up. When you guys were talking about a car, I don’t understand, I figured out that apparently,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the RTX 2080 Mobile Max-Q GPU in TIFF’s laptop apparently is actually

⏹️ ▶️ Marco pretty good.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco Who

⏹️ ▶️ John knew? No, it’s a modern day RTX line is Nvidia’s current line with the supposed ray tracing

⏹️ ▶️ John hardware and yada yada. So I’m assuming it’s a laptop variant of that. I just don’t know how strong it is compared to the quote unquote

⏹️ ▶️ John real RTX

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco desktop. Yeah,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it seems from a very quick search that it’s just basically an underclocked version the desktop one that seems

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to manage something like half to two-thirds its performance which might be okay like

⏹️ ▶️ Marco if we’re gonna do VR for a game that we’ve been waiting like you know 15 years for it’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco totally fine I like I want to I want to make it good I want to have like I want to be able to run it at good settings

⏹️ ▶️ John you haven’t been waiting 15 years for this Alex VR thing you’ve been waiting 15 years for a half-life 3 this

⏹️ ▶️ John is not half-life 3

⏹️ ▶️ Marco well it’s kind of half-life 3 I think

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John it basically

⏹️ ▶️ Marco is well I’m gonna call it roughly that anyway What’s interesting is that the last PC I built

⏹️ ▶️ Marco was the PC I built to play Half-Life 2 And so the next PC I

⏹️ ▶️ Marco build might be one to play Oh my word.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey All right, moving on.

Project CHIP

⏹️ ▶️ Casey on a project connected home over IP, not a very exciting name unless you, I guess if you

⏹️ ▶️ Casey skip the over, then it becomes chip, which is kind of funny. So Amazon, Apple, Google, the Zigbee Alliance,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and other people are working to are forming a working group to develop an open standard for smart home devices.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I have not taken very much time to look into this, but the brief amount of time that I’ve looked into

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it. I think this is actually good. Is it, am

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I allowed to say that in 2019, that something good happened? Somebody explain

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco to me why this is

⏹️ ▶️ Marco bad. To be fair, it’s almost 2020. Well, true.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey What’s going on?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s one of those things. So they’ve formed this working group, they’ve announced this partnership or whatever,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and it’s the kind of thing that often would result in an industry standard like

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Bluetooth or USB. So in theory, if all works out, this could be the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco unification of home standards, like HomeKit plus Amazon’s whatever, So

⏹️ ▶️ Marco like, and Z-Wave and all these other weirdo things, like there’s a whole bunch of things out there. This could be like the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco unified standard. This could be like the Bluetooth or Wi-Fi of home stuff, which would be great.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco But that’s a big if, like if this all works out, if they actually go forward with this, this is the very first

⏹️ ▶️ Marco step towards that. There’s no guarantee that this will ever become anything.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco They might, you know, this spec working group might fall apart before they ever develop a spec. They might

⏹️ ▶️ Marco develop a spec and then no one implements it. they might develop a spec and then people implement it, but not for

⏹️ ▶️ Marco very long. And there aren’t that many products in the market that do it. Or like one of the big players like Apple or Amazon,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco one of them drops out or something like that. So like there’s a lot that can still fall apart and make this not

⏹️ ▶️ Marco very useful. But if everything goes to plan, if they actually do develop

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a coherent spec that they all agree on, that everyone starts shipping products for, and that that can kind of replace

⏹️ ▶️ Marco or supersede the existing things like HomeKit that are out there now, then that would be awesome for consumers.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco But that’s a lot of ifs, and so I think it’s too soon to really get your hopes up on this.

⏹️ ▶️ John If someone’s gonna drop out, it probably shouldn’t be Apple. Like, it’s kind of amazing that all these

⏹️ ▶️ John companies agree to this, especially the ones that are doing well in the home market. It just goes to show that when it comes to doing

⏹️ ▶️ John stuff in your home, even the most powerful top players in this market feel

⏹️ ▶️ John the pressure of basically, like, if you’ve got something in your home, a light switch,

⏹️ ▶️ John a smart light bulb, a talking cylinder, Like anything like that that becomes part of your home.

⏹️ ▶️ John If there’s a barrier to entry of you buying something that doesn’t work with it and they all

⏹️ ▶️ John feel that like no one is so dominant, they’re like, we don’t have to worry about interoperability. We dominate. Right. Even if

⏹️ ▶️ John you have a house that’s like 99 percent, one thing and then 1 percent, some other thing that’s annoying.

⏹️ ▶️ John It’s annoying to get them to work together and to sort of harmonize it. And a lot of these sort of, you know, proprietary

⏹️ ▶️ John systems from non tech companies will come in and, you know, like home improvement things like,

⏹️ ▶️ John oh, we’ll install a system that will run everything in your house, but you gotta keep using this brand of thing. Like, nobody likes that.

⏹️ ▶️ John Like, no one wants, Amazon doesn’t wanna be locked out because you have like Lutron everything. And you know,

⏹️ ▶️ John all the big companies are trying to do deals with everybody, like, you know, implement our standard, work with Google Nest, work

⏹️ ▶️ John with whatever the Amazon’s automation stuff. And Apple’s trying to get everyone to work with HomeKit. And a lot of these devices,

⏹️ ▶️ John like I did that thing with my smart outlets, try to work with all of them. Because if you’re selling hardware, you’re

⏹️ ▶️ John like, oh, I don’t want people to feel like they’re locked in. Now we have to implement HomeKit and the Amazon thing

⏹️ ▶️ John and the Google thing or whatever the hell Zigbee is. Like we got to implement all this. It makes the product so much more

⏹️ ▶️ John complicated and expensive. And even though they say they support all these things, what version

⏹️ ▶️ John of all the things do they support? Which one do they support the most? If 90% of their customers

⏹️ ▶️ John use like Amazon’s home automation but they say they have the other one says bullet point features, are they gonna keep those up to date?

⏹️ ▶️ John Are they gonna be buggy? It’s a bad situation for everybody. And despite us

⏹️ ▶️ John being a few years into this battle, I guess nobody feels comfortable saying, if we just wait it

⏹️ ▶️ John out, we’ll come out on top. Everyone will leave our competitors in the dust and we will dominate Microsoft style and be

⏹️ ▶️ John the one true home automation standard. We’ll be our standard. We’ll be Google Nest.

⏹️ ▶️ John We’ll be Amazon’s thing. We’ll be HomeKit, right? HomeKit is far behind the leaders

⏹️ ▶️ John in this camp for a variety of reasons. Their first one that they rolled out was very expensive and very restrictive in terms of security,

⏹️ ▶️ John which is good for the user, but bad for integration. And Apple’s been backing off that, saying you don’t have to implement all these

⏹️ ▶️ John securities, not implement them yourself, but you can do an open source one, and we don’t have to give you the chips for it. And

⏹️ ▶️ John now they have an open source thing. We’ll put a link to that in the show notes, the HomeKit Accessory Development

⏹️ ▶️ John Kit, which is the HomeKit ADK. That’s now open source. Like this is from back

⏹️ ▶️ John when you used to have to sort of get Apple’s permission to even make one of these things, and now it’s open source and you can implement it yourself, right? So they’ve

⏹️ ▶️ John come a long way, but they’re so far behind that Apple is like, boy, I really

⏹️ ▶️ John hope this works because this is our way to get into the market. Whereas I think Amazon and Google are like,

⏹️ ▶️ John they don’t wanna fight against each other. Google doesn’t wanna have to displace Amazon in your house. Amazon doesn’t wanna have to displace

⏹️ ▶️ John Google. And they’re both battling with the hardware makers. They all have to go to them and say, support

⏹️ ▶️ John our thing and support our thing is the best support. You can support Amazon things, but give us the good support.

⏹️ ▶️ John And it makes all the devices more expensive because it costs more to develop them and everything. So

⏹️ ▶️ John I’m glad to see this. It’s kind of miraculous that it’s happening. Like we had all these years of

⏹️ ▶️ John fighting with each other and we have some dominant players, but everybody looks around and says, this kind of sucks.

⏹️ ▶️ John And Marco just cited the success stories. If we had 20 different wireless standards

⏹️ ▶️ John for wireless networking, it would be worse for everybody. Same thing with Bluetooth, even going

⏹️ ▶️ John far back as physical media. We had these media format wars, but everyone likes it

⏹️ ▶️ John better when you settle on, even if you settle on the worst standard, like VHS or whatever, settling on the CD

⏹️ ▶️ John standard, Blu-ray as opposed to, what was it,

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey HD DVD. HD DVD.

⏹️ ▶️ John And the ones that we forgot, like Super Audio CD. Anyway, having a standard

⏹️ ▶️ John does eventually help everybody. And even though everyone wants to be sort of the winner,

⏹️ ▶️ John I guess the remaining battleground is who has the patents on what. But even that in this day and age, Like, no,

⏹️ ▶️ John these big players won’t, not won’t go into an alliance, but are hesitant to enter into

⏹️ ▶️ John an alliance that is tied down by patents. You know, just look at the Qualcomm stuff with them,

⏹️ ▶️ John you know, licensing their patents to anybody who asks for a very expensive price and you know,

⏹️ ▶️ John that whole mess. And then I guess the CD was like Philips and Sony and anyway, open standards

⏹️ ▶️ John are better for everybody. It just took like many years of war for them all to agree to that. So

⏹️ ▶️ John here’s hoping that this means that the devices that we buy will be cheaper

⏹️ ▶️ John and that eventually they will, whatever support they have for the standard, if this is the

⏹️ ▶️ John only thing they have to support, then they will support it well and be able to introduce new products

⏹️ ▶️ John over the years. And, you know, I mean, I suppose the worst that can be is

⏹️ ▶️ John like wifi where eventually your router doesn’t work anymore because wifi standards have moved on, but those at least move more slowly

⏹️ ▶️ John than, you know, the differences between HomeKit and Google Nest and all that other stuff. So my

⏹️ ▶️ John fingers are crossed for this too. I’m hoping all of these, I don’t know, Vipers, I’m hoping they can all stay

⏹️ ▶️ John in the same basket without killing each other, uh, for, for the greater good. Uh,

⏹️ ▶️ John I, I give it a better than 50% chance. I think my fingers are crossed.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I give it one chance in three. Uh, I also would like to point out to all the people that have already emailed

⏹️ ▶️ Casey us. We are aware of XKCD number nine 27. We will put a link

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John in the show notes. if for some

⏹️ ▶️ Casey reason you haven’t seen it, but thank you to everyone who’s already emailed us to remind us of that thing that we already knew existed.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I assume that’s the like one new standard thing.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John Yeah, I

⏹️ ▶️ Marco didn’t even have to look to know.

⏹️ ▶️ John The thing about all of these things is like, this is trying to make a standard, but unlike what that comic

⏹️ ▶️ John is about, there aren’t that many open standards. Like you could say

⏹️ ▶️ John HomeKit is a standard, but is it a standard? It’s just an app, it’s an Apple proprietary thing that other

⏹️ ▶️ John people can implement. And it has become much more open of a standard now. you can download this, you know, open

⏹️ ▶️ John source thing and do it. But it’s not like I feel like a standard is like more than just Apple has to agree that this is the way

⏹️ ▶️ John things should work, right? If only Apple agrees and Apple entirely controls how that standard develops.

⏹️ ▶️ John Not really a standard in that sense. The the SCAD CD comic is more like, you know, web

⏹️ ▶️ John standards where there’s 20 different verses of HTML and XML. And in theory,

⏹️ ▶️ John no one company controls them. But there’s so many different standards that it’s kind of a pain. Anyway.

⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, one more standard might not be the solution, but the current situation, if

⏹️ ▶️ John you were to leave it as is, definitely isn’t the solution, because ask anybody who’s tried to get their home full of

⏹️ ▶️ John home automation devices from 20 different vendors to all work together. It’s not great.

Narrow feedback channels

⏹️ ▶️ Casey So a week or two ago, Marco put in a Slack

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that the three of us are in the following, I’m going to quote Marco to Marco, but I thought it was really interesting

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and I wanted to spend a couple of minutes talking about it. Marco wrote, the Tim Cook era of Apple doesn’t seem

⏹️ ▶️ Casey to have good intuition on what products should be, so they rely heavily on external input, but they only seem to listen

⏹️ ▶️ Casey to such input through select narrow channels like a pro workflow group. So the focus of their high end products seems to

⏹️ ▶️ Casey be getting narrower. I think I wholeheartedly

⏹️ ▶️ Casey agree with you on that. And one of the things that struck me about the Mac Pro, and we

⏹️ ▶️ Casey talked about this a bit last episode and about how people like Steve Troutman-Smith

⏹️ ▶️ Casey or Paul Haddad are clinging to the idea, perhaps justifiably,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that the Mac Pro should be for them, but isn’t. And we don’t necessarily need to rehash

⏹️ ▶️ Casey last week’s conversation, But what had occurred to me listening to

⏹️ ▶️ Casey the three of us talk about it last week and seeing this comment from Marco was that it seems like

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Apple has started to listen and listen well to some people, which is exactly what Marco

⏹️ ▶️ Casey said. But there are other people like me, like developers, that

⏹️ ▶️ Casey maybe they’re not listening to as much. And that isn’t necessarily

⏹️ ▶️ Casey a problem, but it does bum me out Because maybe in a perfect

⏹️ ▶️ Casey world where I can design whatever magical Mac I want, maybe I would want a reasonably priced,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey you know, small, like mini tower or something like that to mini towers even exist in the PC world anymore. I don’t even know,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey but it seems like Apple’s definitely listening to the,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey uh, you know, film editors and, and, and people in the film industry. The they’re listening to YouTubers

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and certainly trying to get on YouTube as good side. But what about developers, man? Do we not count anymore?

⏹️ ▶️ Casey So let’s start with Marco. Marco, do you want to add any color to this? Do you want to elaborate any,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey or do you have any other thoughts that you’d like to share?

⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, some currency exchange headwinds is what Marco sees.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Wow. Yeah, I think just kind of some elaboration on what

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I meant by this. Like, you know, we heard about this Pro Workflow Group being created back, I think

⏹️ ▶️ Marco they announced that right after the Mac Pro Roundtable, or whenever they announced that that was a thing.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it seems like what they have made since then,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the marketing for it, and this is mostly about the Mac Pro. I think if you look

⏹️ ▶️ Marco at the laptop lineup, I think the 16-inch shows, the 16-inch is basically

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the Mac Pro developer. It’s exactly what developers want. It’s a laptop, which most developers

⏹️ ▶️ Marco use. It has the biggest screen in the laptop lineup, which most developers want, and the most horsepower, and they give it

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a very developer-friendly keyboard, finally. So that I think, I think it’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco very clear that the computer that most developers use which is the largest MacBook Pro, Apple

⏹️ ▶️ Marco is doing well to attract them on that. And the, and it is designed in such a way

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that besides the high entry price, which is unchanged from the, from the last few years,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco so like that’s not really a new thing. Besides the high entry price to the 15 inch or now 16 inch model,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that is a fairly generalist computer again. Now that it’s gotten rid of the controversial keyboard

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and it’s listed some of the latest the limits that were there in 2016, you know, that have been lifted over time. It’s a much

⏹️ ▶️ Marco more generalist, versatile computer. So I think in the laptop line, they’re doing okay so far. We’ll see how

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that trickles down, if that trickles down below the highest end models. But they’ve

⏹️ ▶️ Marco done a good job of making a kind of generalist 16-inch, you know, top of the line model again.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Again, there are nitpicks. I would love to have, you know, different ports, SD card, things like that, but you know,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco we’ll take what we can get here. But when you look at the high end of the desktop line,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s always been this very narrow set of

⏹️ ▶️ Marco these hyper-focused products. So you have things like the Mac Mini, which

⏹️ ▶️ Marco is really good for what it is, but what it is doesn’t satisfy everyone’s needs.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And by the way, it’s super expensive for what it is. And then you have the iMac

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and the iMac Pro, both of which totally nail what they’re going for,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco which is like, you know, the kind of mid-range desktop market, you know, you have at

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the low end, you have like the kind of cheap appliance ones that you like stick in real estate offices to look pretty. Then at the high end, you have the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco iMac Pro that is like this awesome workhorse that I love, but it has

⏹️ ▶️ Marco limitations. It’s a very, it’s a little bit narrower. And if you want to break out of that, or if this isn’t the kind of computer

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you want, then you have to go to the Mac Pro. And the Mac Pro in 2006 when it

⏹️ ▶️ Marco came out, and all the towers that John talked about that came before it that were

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the PowerPC towers, they were much more generalist machines. They appealed

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to a wide range of possible uses, possible customers. They span a wide range of

⏹️ ▶️ Marco possible price points that started out fairly accessible. They were always at the high end of accessible,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco like $2,000 maybe, but they were still in the accessible range. And then that crept

⏹️ ▶️ Marco up over time, And now this new Mac Pro, I mean the 2013

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Mac Pro, the trashcan Mac Pro, seemed to be very narrow in its appeal.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco That was like, if you happen to need Xeons and no expansion

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and very little upgradability, and if you were willing to pay for two workstation

⏹️ ▶️ Marco class GPUs and all this, that was such an error product that it failed in the marketplace,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco for lots of reasons, but it failed. The new Mac Pro that they’ve made now, the 2019

⏹️ ▶️ Marco slash 2020 Mac Pro, it seems like they made it

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to appeal mostly just to the needs of high-end video professionals.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And that’s not to say that they shouldn’t appeal to those needs, but it seems like that was

⏹️ ▶️ Marco pretty much most of what they were going for and not really trying to appeal to a much

⏹️ ▶️ Marco wider market. And there’s all sorts of use cases where the market

⏹️ ▶️ Marco just is not gonna pay that. And there’s all sorts of pro-market segments

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that are just gonna say either I can’t or no thanks because of various,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco mostly about pricing or part selection. There is a whole

⏹️ ▶️ Marco separate issue that I don’t think we’re gonna get into tonight about Nvidia and CUDA support. That’s a whole separate issue that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think they’ve already lost that entire battle and they’re never gonna go back there,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I don’t think. but so they’ve lost a lot of like the scientific arena to the CUDA

⏹️ ▶️ Marco machines. But unless Apple makes up with NVIDIA, that’s never gonna be fixed.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco But within the realm they targeted here, it seems like they made this pro

⏹️ ▶️ Marco workflow group, which seems to consist mostly of video editors

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and people who do really big projects in logic. It seems like this is like people who use

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Apple’s two remaining pro software apps, basically, Logic and

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Final Cut. It’s like, people who use Logic and Final Cut, they are designing computers pretty

⏹️ ▶️ Marco much for them.

⏹️ ▶️ John And 3D, like, think of what was in that room at WWC. They had the person with the crazy logic project. They

⏹️ ▶️ John had a photographer, to be fair, like they had photo editing or whatever,

⏹️ ▶️ John Final Cut video editing, and then they had the Pixar folks, which were running a non-Apple 3D

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco program. So

⏹️ ▶️ Marco these are three industries, and they’re only showing very, very high-end users of this

⏹️ ▶️ Marco as well. So you don’t have, the kind of mid-range music

⏹️ ▶️ Marco producer is not using this. They’re not making this thousand instrument track.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco The kind of mid-range 3D animator, it cannot afford this. The mid-range

⏹️ ▶️ Marco film editor or animation studio probably isn’t buying these because it’s too expensive for them probably

⏹️ ▶️ Marco as well. So they’re making this product only for

⏹️ ▶️ Marco very, very high-end use that also has very high budgets and doesn’t really care

⏹️ ▶️ Marco about what they’re spending. And it’s just like, it seems like they can enter a dangerous

⏹️ ▶️ Marco feedback loop here where they defined

⏹️ ▶️ Marco what this should be by seemingly the feedback from the group

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that they created that works for them, like the Pro Workflow Group, are Apple employees.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco So they’ve created this group of people, they pay them to do high-end work,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and then they use their feedback, presumably, to then inform the development of these products.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco But it’s kind of like, it’s an artificial closed feedback loop. And I worry

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that without, you know, it does seem like as the company has gotten bigger under the Tim Cook era,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know, they’ve expanded, they’ve matured, or they’ve grown, whatever else, it does seem like the lack of having that Steve

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Jobs-like visionary means that they’re designing products less on intuition and more

⏹️ ▶️ Marco on data, but they’re collecting data only from a seemingly

⏹️ ▶️ Marco very small amount of sources. And I think this is one of the reasons why

⏹️ ▶️ Marco many Apple product releases over the last five years seem like they’ve misread the room.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Like the way the HomePod kind of fell out, I can’t remember how awful the launch was and

⏹️ ▶️ Marco how weirdly targeted of a product it ended up being. Certainly the butterfly keyboard laptops

⏹️ ▶️ Marco are definitely suffering from this problem. It just seems like they’re

⏹️ ▶️ Marco designing products for somebody and many of the products succeed in just being

⏹️ ▶️ Marco generalist and being fine. But you have these outliers like the HomePod or like the Mac Pro

⏹️ ▶️ Marco where it just seems like you have to ask if they would have designed this a little bit differently

⏹️ ▶️ Marco or had a little bit different priorities in mind, this could have been a much broader appeal product. And instead,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco they designed this very, very narrow thing that seems to almost purposely exclude

⏹️ ▶️ Marco massive swaths of the market.

⏹️ ▶️ John So I think my personal narrative for the Mac Pro is kind of Apple’s narrative, again,

⏹️ ▶️ John like implicitly by what they show to WWDC and who they show in the videos using the thing.

⏹️ ▶️ John But it makes sense, is that the Mac Pro is the highest of the high end. And we talked about this last

⏹️ ▶️ John show, like that leaves a big gap. There is actually a big gap between the

⏹️ ▶️ John iMac Pro, their next most powerful computer, next most capable computer, and the Mac Pro.

⏹️ ▶️ John But they’re sort of defining an end point. And I think it’s fine and probably

⏹️ ▶️ John the correct approach to do that. And I think for now, and what they did it with by going to the

⏹️ ▶️ John highest of the hand, I think they took a much better approach than the 2013 in that they designed

⏹️ ▶️ John for the highest of the high end they have these customers in mind, but they also tried

⏹️ ▶️ John to make a machine structured in a way that it can support

⏹️ ▶️ John use cases that they didn’t think of. Also at the high end, like it’s not saying that it suddenly

⏹️ ▶️ John is able to extend downward to all those things that you were just talking about, Marco, but within the high end, they’re not, they didn’t like,

⏹️ ▶️ John they didn’t, you know, put a bunch of, uh, unchangeable GPUs in there and make you take two of them or whatever, it’s a huge

⏹️ ▶️ John box with a huge number of slots and lots of actual physical empty space. And with, you know, thunderbolt

⏹️ ▶️ John and presumed updates to this thing or whatever in, I think it can address

⏹️ ▶️ John a lot more high end needs than just the ones that they talk to people about. Kind of the same thing with the afterburner

⏹️ ▶️ John card where there’s particular use cases in the high end that they knew about from the pro workflow group group and rather than

⏹️ ▶️ John make a thing that apple has done in the past, sometimes with third party help like dedicated accelerators

⏹️ ▶️ John like the dating myself again, but the the quadra AV line, the Quadra 840

⏹️ ▶️ John AV, and they had all sorts of AV accelerators inside them. There was the Philips TriMedia card, all

⏹️ ▶️ John sorts of sort of proprietary burned-in silicon accelerator cards for a particular use case.

⏹️ ▶️ John All of those ended up being cool for the use case that they were made for, but then rapidly out of date and useless going forward.

⏹️ ▶️ John And the Afterburner is a more pragmatic approach, where it’s like, we’re going to give you this dedicated $2,000

⏹️ ▶️ John card that does these amazing things that we’re not possibly for by taking work away from the CPU and the GPU.

⏹️ ▶️ John But since it’s an FPGA, you can change this functionality in the future. So maybe this

⏹️ ▶️ John card won’t just be a useless relic three years later. Maybe you can change it to do something else,

⏹️ ▶️ John right? So all that speaks to, yes, addressing the highest of the high end, seeing exactly how high you

⏹️ ▶️ John can go, but doing it in a way that leaves as many doors open as possible. The one door that’s not open is,

⏹️ ▶️ John yeah, but do you have something cheaper? Like I don’t need all that. I need some of that.

⏹️ ▶️ John And this is what we talked about last week. What is in between that and the iMac Pro? Because the iMac Pro gives me

⏹️ ▶️ John very few options once I buy the thing. And the Mac Pro gives me so many

⏹️ ▶️ John options that it’s awesome, but it’s way too much money. So is there a way you can address that middle market?

⏹️ ▶️ John And the Pro Workflow Group is, like you said, A, they’re Apple employees, albeit they’re from industry. So presumably

⏹️ ▶️ John the people they’re hiring actually know what they’re talking about are not just random Apple employees. But B, it’s a limited set

⏹️ ▶️ John of people that they probably just have video, audio, photographers, like the expected

⏹️ ▶️ John folks that you would imagine. The main constituent for Apple’s quote unquote pro product line as Apple tells

⏹️ ▶️ John us is developers. Well, guess what? Apple has access to a large group of developers.

⏹️ ▶️ John If Apple actually ever is interested in saying, what kind of machine should we make for

⏹️ ▶️ John developers? They have Apple opportunity to ask that question. I would argue that developers who work for Apple are

⏹️ ▶️ John still maybe, you know, biased in various ways in terms of how they

⏹️ ▶️ John work and what they work on as opposed to developers out there in the industry. In particular, I would imagine that if

⏹️ ▶️ John you talk to Apple developers to try to figure out what game developers want, it would not be useful because game developers

⏹️ ▶️ John in the real world would think, not only do I not just target Apple platforms,

⏹️ ▶️ John I’m not even going to target Apple platforms unless something big changes. I need to use Unity or whatever

⏹️ ▶️ John to do things cross-platform or I work for the big console vendors and anyway, that aside,

⏹️ ▶️ John talking to just Apple developers could get, and I assume they do this. Like I’m not saying this is the thing they should do, They

⏹️ ▶️ John should have thought of this. I’m assuming they do do this. And that produces machines like the

⏹️ ▶️ John MacBook Pro and the iMac Pro, which I think are good, now that they fixed the keyboard, good developer

⏹️ ▶️ John machines. It’s this in-between place where people look at the Mac Pro and say,

⏹️ ▶️ John I want some of that, some of that flexibility, but not as much price. And, you know, again, refer

⏹️ ▶️ John people to last week’s episode. I think there is space for them to

⏹️ ▶️ John come down there, but I’m not sure the market is big enough them to design an entirely new computer if they could just you

⏹️ ▶️ John know again I was attributing last week to saying when they go with ARM and have a cheaper CPU inside

⏹️ ▶️ John there can you what’s the cheapest you can make something inside that

⏹️ ▶️ John case put half the number of PCI slots in you know put an ARM CPU

⏹️ ▶️ John in there put some cheaper video cards maybe when maybe when USB 4 rolls around it will

⏹️ ▶️ John simplify and make the bus deal it less expensive because USB 4 in theory will subsume

⏹️ ▶️ John Thunderbolt and you know you you could have the same cavernous case

⏹️ ▶️ John with less stuff inside it and maybe that could serve the market of people who want an expandable computer for less

⏹️ ▶️ John money but for now I think Apple’s logic and it makes sense to me is we need to stake

⏹️ ▶️ John out the high-end because our problem for years was we had essentially abandoned the high-end we weren’t addressing their needs

⏹️ ▶️ John at all and we didn’t even have any computers they would even want let’s make the highest of the high-end

⏹️ ▶️ John let’s make of the most capable Mac ever let’s to make sure it’s able to serve the most

⏹️ ▶️ John possible use cases for the people who have the most demand of their computers.

⏹️ ▶️ John And that’s a good place to start. I’m hoping that in the years to come, they will evolve that strategy.

⏹️ ▶️ John But it’s more important to me personally, and I think also more important to Apple as a company

⏹️ ▶️ John to keep fighting on the high end. Because if Apple just made the iMac Pro and then like a tower

⏹️ ▶️ John that you could spec up a little bit, but never could get powerful enough to serve these, know these

⏹️ ▶️ John ridiculous needs they’re showing in all these videos and these pro workflow teams that would be bad because i think that would make

⏹️ ▶️ John more pros abandon apple like it’s the halo car thing all over again or the you know racing car team for a

⏹️ ▶️ John car manufacturer you need to have that aspirational thing that

⏹️ ▶️ John you know represents the pinnacle of performance and you learn things from it and that trickles down to the rest of the line

⏹️ ▶️ John you just hope that in the case of apple the gap between that and the rest of their line is not the same

⏹️ ▶️ John as the gap between an f1 car and a ford escort.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I don’t know. What is the most effective way to get developer

⏹️ ▶️ Casey input then? Because I agree with you that it seems like sucking developers into

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Apple and to be Apple employees may or may not be the right answer. So what do you

⏹️ ▶️ Casey do? What is in it for me or for a game developer to be invited to Apple and donate

⏹️ ▶️ Casey my time to Apple, one of the richest companies in the world, just so I get better computers out the other end?

⏹️ ▶️ John I mean, I don’t think that’s like Marco was saying in the Jobs era, the

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco myth is that…

⏹️ ▶️ John I think we tell them for free.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco Exactly.

⏹️ ▶️ John The myth of the Jobs era was that Apple just know instinctively what people want.

⏹️ ▶️ John So they wouldn’t… Don’t bother asking anybody. Focus groups are stupid. Customers don’t know what they want. We’ll tell them what they want. Like,

⏹️ ▶️ John you know, they’ll just ask for a faster horse, yada, yada, yada. There’s a million business… There is some truth to that, obviously.

⏹️ ▶️ John It’s part of the myth, but it’s also, there’s some truth in there that it rings true to us as customers based on what

⏹️ ▶️ John Apple has rolled out. And in general, you probably just don’t wanna ask people what they want, but you do need to,

⏹️ ▶️ John like, if you’re at the point where you’re asking people, like, this is linking the show notes from ages ago that I don’t think we ever talked about,

⏹️ ▶️ John where Apple was sending out surveys to iMac Pro owners

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey saying,

⏹️ ▶️ John what do

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey you like about your

⏹️ ▶️ Casey iMac Pro? Not just iMac Pro, I got one on my old iMac way back when.

⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, and Marco got the iMac Pro survey, I think? Yeah, yeah,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco filled

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John it

⏹️ ▶️ Marco out. Every time I get a survey from Apple, I fill it out every time.

⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, and so they’re just asking people, but it’s like, you fill that out, and I would imagine Marco was probably thinking

⏹️ ▶️ John the same thing, like he said before, it’s, you know, read the room being the phrase of the day to describe

⏹️ ▶️ John this. If you have to be asking, like, if you have to ask people, what do you like

⏹️ ▶️ John about the computer, what do you like, I know it’s not, of course they have to ask, of course, like, the point is, you shouldn’t just assume, right?

⏹️ ▶️ John But it seems, like, if they send out a survey, it’s like, how do you feel about the keyboards on your laptops?

⏹️ ▶️ John It’s been three years, Apple. Like, at a certain point, you should not have to ask us how we feel about

⏹️ ▶️ John the keyboards. It’s clear that, like, it should be clear to everybody that these keyboards are not

⏹️ ▶️ John a good solution for you. So fix them, right? You don’t need a survey to tell you that.

⏹️ ▶️ John In the same way, I don’t think you would need a survey to ask people, like,

⏹️ ▶️ John would you prefer a computer that costs less money but is more capable than,

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey you know,

⏹️ ▶️ John like, there’s a gap in the lineup. Like, you see it. Like, would you prefer a computer that instead

⏹️ ▶️ John of having to replace every few years, you could instead upgrade parts of it? They know there’s a segment of the population,

⏹️ ▶️ John of the customer population that would like that, right? Would you prefer more flexibility in configuring computers so you

⏹️ ▶️ John could spend more money on the parts that you care about and less money on the parts

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey that like- No, I wouldn’t like that at all.

⏹️ ▶️ John Of course, some people prefer that. Like, of course, everyone’s gonna say yes to that, and that’s not true, and that’s

⏹️ ▶️ John where Apple should take their judgment to say like, well, people will always answer yes to that, but in reality, most people don’t want all

⏹️ ▶️ John those choices. There’s too many choices. You know, like that’s where Apple’s judgment comes in. Right. But I just feel like

⏹️ ▶️ John at this point from the outside, it’s so easy for us to see sort of the blind spots and the gaps

⏹️ ▶️ John in the lineup. But anytime you talk to someone inside Apple about that on or off the record,

⏹️ ▶️ John you get the feeling that of course they see those exact spots in the lineup. Like they’re more familiar with their products

⏹️ ▶️ John than even than we are on the outside, but they have sort of accepted justifications

⏹️ ▶️ John for Apple not being in those markets and trying to convince them that they’re accepted justification of like, well,

⏹️ ▶️ John that market’s not big enough those people would actually be happier if they bought a MacBook Pro or you know,

⏹️ ▶️ John our data shows that the iMac Pro serves their needs better or what we think it’s better to just concentrate on making compile

⏹️ ▶️ John times faster on the iMac Pro rather than giving developers this machine that they think they want because in reality, they are

⏹️ ▶️ John more efficient on this thing. And you know, it’s like, all that is true, like, I’m just those justifications make sense.

⏹️ ▶️ John But as I’ve said, too, many people are asking me about why I have this ridiculous computer that’s sitting next to me now, the heart wants

⏹️ ▶️ John what it wants. There is some segment of the population that just wants a little bit of that

⏹️ ▶️ John hobbyist tinkerer experience of having the, you know, the hot rod that you

⏹️ ▶️ John get to change yourself in various ways. And Apple say, Yeah, we know they’re out there, but they’re too small

⏹️ ▶️ John market, and we don’t care about them. That’s exactly what they used to say about the super high end. It’s like,

⏹️ ▶️ John what are we doing here? Are why are we bothering to make this pro computer, the iMac does pretty much everything that

⏹️ ▶️ John most of our customers need. And that tiny sliver of people who want to give us huge amounts of money for a super powerful

⏹️ ▶️ John computer. We don’t even need them. And they had a change of heart about that. And that change of heart was

⏹️ ▶️ John like, I don’t think the facts on the ground changed. It’s just they like they’re thinking about it changes

⏹️ ▶️ John like all this. The math is is as it was before. We might not even make any money on this computer.

⏹️ ▶️ John But they eventually became convinced we have to do it anyway. Like it doesn’t make doesn’t make sense

⏹️ ▶️ John that we have to do it, but we have to do it anyway, even if we lose money, because it’s part of Apple being Apple,

⏹️ ▶️ John right? I think there is less of a push for them to fill that middle tier, and they may never actually

⏹️ ▶️ John fill it, but I do have some confidence that they will drag the Mac Pro down

⏹️ ▶️ John market a little bit if they can, especially if and when there’s an ARM transition.

⏹️ ▶️ John At least that’s my hope, because I feel like, although I am perfectly fine with the Mac Pro doing what

⏹️ ▶️ John it did, it’s untenable long-term to have this big a gap in the lineup.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, I think an ARM transition could potentially

⏹️ ▶️ Marco totally throw out everything about their current lineup. Like why things are differentiated the way they

⏹️ ▶️ Marco are, the families that are defined the way they are. Because that can change

⏹️ ▶️ Marco everything. Because so much of the current lineup is based on what Intel offers.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Various thermal classes, performance classes, how Intel segments its own lineup to get certain

⏹️ ▶️ Marco high-end or low-end features and needs and everything. An ARM transition doesn’t just change

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the performance per watt, potentially. It changes everything about what these platforms

⏹️ ▶️ Marco are. The Mac Pro Tower might not be able to exist anymore

⏹️ ▶️ Marco in a world of ARM, because maybe Apple will figure out that it’s no longer worth the engineering

⏹️ ▶️ Marco effort of having PCI being in the computer that it’s exposed to users.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Maybe Thunderbolt doesn’t come along for the ride because of the various complexities in implementing it, and maybe

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Apple doesn’t want to implement it, or can’t for various economic or technical reasons. Like, who

⏹️ ▶️ Marco knows? There are so many assumptions we have now about the lineup

⏹️ ▶️ Marco go totally out the window if they switch over to ARM, which I think is one of the reasons why we haven’t seen

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that happen yet, because it’s a big deal, and one of the reasons why the high-end

⏹️ ▶️ Marco desktop might be one of the very last models to make that switch.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco If an ARM switch happens, we all assume that it’ll happen across the whole product line, but it might just be

⏹️ ▶️ Marco like a small laptop first, and then eventually the bigger laptops, and then maybe

⏹️ ▶️ Marco someday the desktops. But that might take like five years, 10 years, who knows? Because

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s so complicated. So if an arms transition is on the horizon, which I think and hope it is,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco everything we know has to be questioned, every assumption. And maybe the Mac Pro

⏹️ ▶️ Marco they’ve made now is intended to just temporarily bridge that gap. maybe

⏹️ ▶️ Marco they realize we’re only gonna need this thing for five years, 10 years. And

⏹️ ▶️ Marco maybe they figure we don’t need to address this market, this lower end market, during that time because if

⏹️ ▶️ Marco they’re just patient, eventually we will solve their needs in a totally different way.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey You know, as you’re talking about the ARM transition, it got me thinking that, and we’re

⏹️ ▶️ Casey actually gonna talk about this in the Ask ATP in a minute, but it got me thinking that if you look

⏹️ ▶️ Casey at Apple’s main and core products over the last few years.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Their laptops, their, let me try that again, their main and core computer

⏹️ ▶️ Casey products, not, you know, phones and pads, but their MacBook Pros, their MacBook

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Airs, their iMacs, with the exception of the Mac Pro,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey everything has been on a pretty steady evolutionary series,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey if you will, for several years now. And yeah, the 16, it is a departure

⏹️ ▶️ Casey in some ways. We got our inverted T back. We got our escape key back. And yeah, the touch bar was new

⏹️ ▶️ Casey a few years ago. Mostly, it’s not that revolutionary over the last, I don’t know, five, 10

⏹️ ▶️ Casey years, something like that. And for the most part, I feel like it’s been

⏹️ ▶️ Casey relatively predictable. Very easy for me to say that in hindsight, but you know,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey there

⏹️ ▶️ Marco haven’t been- I was gonna say, our predictions suck at the time. Well, at the time, yeah. I think if it was more predictable, we’d have a much better

⏹️ ▶️ Marco record of

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey our predictions. That’s true. But

⏹️ ▶️ Casey you know what I mean, right? Like I feel like the three of us, and we were not the only ones, but the three of us mostly

⏹️ ▶️ Casey nailed the 16-inch MacBook Pro. And again, that’s not unique. I’m not trying to get a gold star or anything. I’m just saying that that was

⏹️ ▶️ Casey evolutionary and relatively predictable. But I feel like

⏹️ ▶️ Casey if there is, if there really and truly is an ARM transition, that’s going to throw,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey as you just said, Marco, that’s going to throw everything on its head. It’s going to turn everything upside down. And what a fun

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and probably terrible and stressful time that will be to be an Apple enthusiast,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey right? Because so many things could get thrown away. To your point, Marco,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey does Thunderbolt get thrown away? Does USB-C get thrown away? I doubt it, but you never know.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey So much of our computing worlds may turn upside down, and I’m sure there will be some growing pains

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and some angst and some terror

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John involved

⏹️ ▶️ Casey with that. But how fun would that be, especially as spectators,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey because Marco swears he’s not buying a Mac Pro. We’ll see what happens. John just did

⏹️ ▶️ Casey buy a

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco Mac Pro.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I haven’t bought one yet. Still master of my domain.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah. Well, have another beer and we’ll see what happens over the next few hours. But anyway,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I obviously just spent a tremendous amount of money, in my opinion, on the iMac Pro, and I don’t plan to replace

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it anytime soon. So if this ARM transition happens,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it It is possible that the three of us, probably two of us, will be mostly spectators

⏹️ ▶️ Casey on the initial transition. And I’m actually really excited about that thought. I think

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that could be a lot of fun to watch. And again, I’m sure the three of us will have something to complain about. Did you know,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey gentlemen, that nothing is so perfect that it cannot be complained about? But I think it could be

⏹️ ▶️ Casey really fun to watch. And just as I was thinking about this before I started talking,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey imagine if the iPhone—I’m this up, but the iPhone 15 comes out and they say, okay, we’ve got

⏹️ ▶️ Casey the, a, I don’t even know what that would be. The eight 20, let’s say, you know, the Apple eight 20 processor.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Oh, and by the way, the eight 20 actually powers our brand new MacBook, you know? And again, I doubt

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that would happen, but how fricking cool would that be? If the exact same processor in the iPhone is

⏹️ ▶️ Casey in like a full on traditional computer. So many cool things could happen. I feel like we’re on the

⏹️ ▶️ Casey precipice of so many cool things and. And sitting here today, not knowing

⏹️ ▶️ Casey all the gotchas that come with all these ideas, it just seems like it’d be really, really fun.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey And I’m really enthusiastic and excited about the thought of it.

⏹️ ▶️ John As someone who lived through the past two CPU architecture transitions on the Mac,

⏹️ ▶️ John I can tell you that every one of those transitions was really cool. Like my memories of the PowerPC

⏹️ ▶️ John transition and the Intel transition were both positive. So my memories of the PowerPC transition was that

⏹️ ▶️ John all of a sudden, Macs are getting way Like I remember going to the computer store

⏹️ ▶️ John and playing with the PowerPC Max and just being like, I can’t believe, like it looks like

⏹️ ▶️ John a Mac on the outside, but it is so much faster. It was like bigger than like the SSD upgrade. You

⏹️ ▶️ John know, perceptually, because silly things like drawing a menu or using the graph and calculator

⏹️ ▶️ John app, which was, you know, an amazing demo of the power of this thing, or using like QuickDraw

⏹️ ▶️ John 3D or whatever, you know, any sort of PowerPC accelerated thing. Because remember during the transition, and like huge swaths

⏹️ ▶️ John of the OS were still in 68K, including 68K Assembler, like it was not a smooth transition.

⏹️ ▶️ John But even then, I mean like PowerPC, like that’s the future. And there was all sorts of pie in the sky stuff about,

⏹️ ▶️ John oh, and by the way, PowerPC is gonna have this, you know, speaking of chip, Chirp, common hardware

⏹️ ▶️ John reference platform where you’re gonna be able to make Macs out of PC-like hardware, and so Macs will be cheaper

⏹️ ▶️ John and more capable, and it’s a common platform that other companies are gonna use too. And it’s all these fantasies that never

⏹️ ▶️ John came true about the PowerPC download industry. but it was exciting and the overall impression

⏹️ ▶️ John was Macs are getting better. Now the Intel transition, which you two may remember, similar thing, it was scary, it was

⏹️ ▶️ John like Intel, isn’t that the enemy? What about the Snail, Pentium II, PowerPC, Altevec? Isn’t, you know,

⏹️ ▶️ John there was the angst about it, but as soon as people got those first, like whatever they were, Core 2 Duo, you know,

⏹️ ▶️ John machines in their hands, like the Pentium. Core Duo. Core Duo, yeah, the Pentium 4 dev machines were

⏹️ ▶️ John crap because Pentium 4 was crap, but yeah, but the Core Duo ones and especially the laptops, Everybody

⏹️ ▶️ John shot up real quick about Intel once we got

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the Mac. It was like, they were so fast and so much cheaper.

⏹️ ▶️ John And so much faster than the Macs they replaced, especially the laptops. It was like,

⏹️ ▶️ John all right, no one had, I remember, and on this, you know, it’s a different memory of this, it’s a strange memory. I remember doing stuff

⏹️ ▶️ John in the terminal on an Intel Mac and going, I can’t believe how fast GCC is compiling Perl. Like, I

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey can’t,

⏹️ ▶️ John it is so much faster. How is this even possible? Like, you know, just like, quote unquote, the same

⏹️ ▶️ John Mac, the model before, you know, like the amazing Power Mac G5, dual two gigahertz

⏹️ ▶️ John G5 CPUs. We couldn’t even believe how much power we had at that time. And then you get like

⏹️ ▶️ John the base model, crappy single CPU, Intel Mac Pro

⏹️ ▶️ John and compile Perl on it. It’s like, well, that machine is dead to me now. Power PC, forget it, right?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco My white plastic MacBook loaded the Newegg page so much better

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John than my Power PC

⏹️ ▶️ Marco one did.

⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, so I’m hoping the arm transition overall, despite

⏹️ ▶️ John all the pain and agony that’s gonna come with it, is going to be like those two. The basic impression is going to be

⏹️ ▶️ John Max just got a lot better. And it will, you know, like that will be the overriding

⏹️ ▶️ John memory in hindsight of the transition. That’s what I hope, and I think, you know, of all the companies that have

⏹️ ▶️ John ever done this, Apple is sort of the best in the industry at it. So I’m hoping it will

⏹️ ▶️ John go well. I’m optimistic about an arm transition. Can happen soon enough, he says, as I sit next to his

⏹️ ▶️ John way too expensive Intel computer.

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⏹️ ▶️ Casey right, let’s do some Ask ATP. Wes asks, what is the obsession with running your MacBooks adorable,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey pros, and airs in clamshell mode? It seems like a waste to have a 13 or 16 inch or somewhere in between

⏹️ ▶️ Casey display area go to waste, as well as the flakiness of the system when operated in that mode.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey This is a actually reasonable question and let me speak only for me.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I never ran in clamshell until at my jobby job, you

⏹️ ▶️ Casey know, a year or two, what a year and a half ago, I ended up with two

⏹️ ▶️ Casey 4k monitors and I was, and I had sat them on one of those,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey not a standing desk, I forget the name of it now, but the thing where it was like a tray that you put your monitors

⏹️ ▶️ Casey on. you could make that whole tray stand up a foot or two. And so your, quote unquote,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey desk was standing. It’s in every tech startup now. I forget the name of the company, but

⏹️ ▶️ Casey if I remember, I’ll put it in the show notes. But anyways, VeriDesk. Thank you. My name is T in the chat room. VeriDesk.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey That’s exactly right. So anyways, so the point is the VeriDesk thing that I had only had

⏹️ ▶️ Casey but so much space on it. And it basically only had the room for two 22

⏹️ ▶️ Casey or 24 inch monitors. And because of that, and because these were

⏹️ ▶️ Casey two matching monitors, I didn’t see any need to have a non-matching third panel off

⏹️ ▶️ Casey to the side. And so that’s why I ran in clamshell mode and truth be told, it mostly

⏹️ ▶️ Casey worked okay. It was not flawless by any stretch of the imagination,

⏹️ ▶️ John but it

⏹️ ▶️ Casey was mostly okay. And that’s why I ran in clamshell mode. John, you

⏹️ ▶️ Casey do run in clamshell mode at work, is that correct? And if so, what’s the situation there, remind me?

⏹️ ▶️ John My situation is a little weird. Remember, my whole deal was I didn’t want anything moving my windows around. And I have that

⏹️ ▶️ John 24-inch 1920 by 1200 display. So I run my 15-inch MacBook Pro at 1920 by 1200

⏹️ ▶️ John scale resolution. And then I mirror it to my display

⏹️ ▶️ John so that it’s exactly the same point size on both displays. One is right

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey and

⏹️ ▶️ John one is not, but exactly the same point size. And since it’s mirrored, not only is it not useful

⏹️ ▶️ John to have the monitor open, but I find it distracting. Like if you’re moving your mouse at your windows and you see them moving

⏹️ ▶️ John on another screen, it’s just in your peripheral vision, right? So I close it because it’s just distracting.

⏹️ ▶️ John And I think most people, the people who do run in client shell, I would imagine the most common reason

⏹️ ▶️ John is that they don’t, you know, they have a, the whole reason you have it connected to another display is that display is bigger.

⏹️ ▶️ John And then ergonomically speaking, if you don’t have a laptop stand, it’s awkward to have

⏹️ ▶️ John your other screen in such a different position, right? So that’s why laptop stands are so popular. They put,

⏹️ ▶️ John they essentially hoist that laptop display up to normal ergonomic display height for you. So if you

⏹️ ▶️ John don’t have a laptop stand, you’re probably running in clamshell just because it’s weird to look down into

⏹️ ▶️ John the left or right at your screen or down in front of you if you have it like that. Um, and

⏹️ ▶️ John people who do have laptop stands, this is something I haven’t seen. I’ve never seen anyone with a laptop stand run in clamshell

⏹️ ▶️ John mode because it’s like, well, then why is it up on a pedestal like that? Like, there’s no point in having it up on that pedestal if

⏹️ ▶️ John you’re not going to open it and look at the screen.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think one issue for me, I used to run, you know, laptop open

⏹️ ▶️ Marco on a stand as a second monitor. And I’ve only tried clamshell mode for a few brief periods

⏹️ ▶️ Marco in my computing life because it worked so poorly. The reason why I don’t do it anymore,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco well, since I got a desktop at least, but the reason I don’t do it anymore is that Back when I did

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it, the pixel density of laptops and desktop monitors was about the same.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And so you could put a laptop next to an external monitor and they would be about the same density. So like if you’d move a

⏹️ ▶️ Marco window between the two, it would be about the same size. Nowadays, that’s totally thrown off. Nowadays, laptops

⏹️ ▶️ Marco are way higher density. And so it’s harder to match that, unless I guess you change size and

⏹️ ▶️ Marco everything. But so it doesn’t look as good. And also like never underestimate the value

⏹️ ▶️ Marco of just having like a nice, clean looking desktop. You know, a lot of people have

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the space to have multiple monitors, but just choose not to because maybe they don’t work that way.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I prefer a single monitor. I don’t really have a good spot on my desk to put

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a giant, you know, 16 inch laptop open on a stand next to my monitor somewhere nearby. Like

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it would mess up the symmetry of my desk. I’d have more wires all over my desk. I’d have to like move other stuff like speakers

⏹️ ▶️ Marco or, you know, like, so it’s just, It’s a stupid reason, logically, that like, oh,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I don’t want to mess up my disc arrangement. Like, it isn’t a good reason logically, but I like things to

⏹️ ▶️ Marco look nice, by my definition of nice. And if this breaks that, then I won’t want to

⏹️ ▶️ Marco do it.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey You should just prepare the one.

#askatp: Noisy HDDs for backup?

⏹️ ▶️ Casey way. Hans Schneider writes, how do you deal with the noise of external backup drives? I have an iMac Pro

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I very much love, but I hate the noisy 8 terabyte hard drive next to it that I use for Time Machine.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey It’s not even that loud, but compared to the super quiet Mac Pro, excuse me, iMac Pro, it’s,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey let me just reboot that whole thing. It’s not even that loud, but compared to the super quiet iMac Pro, it’s incredibly

⏹️ ▶️ Casey annoying. I have actually thought about spending lots and lots of euros getting an 8 terabyte SSD putting it into

⏹️ ▶️ Casey an external enclosure, talk about throwing money at the problem. One of the

⏹️ ▶️ Casey many things that does not afflict me that I’m very thankful for is that

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I don’t really care about fans the way that most people and probably,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey certainly the two of you do. I don’t like it, as I think we spoke about last week. Not my favorite,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey but it doesn’t deeply offend me like it does the two of you. So if it were me, I’d

⏹️ ▶️ Casey probably just live with it. But let’s start with Marco, who doesn’t like fan

⏹️ ▶️ Casey noise and then end with John, who is approximately allergic to fan noise.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco What would you do here? So I can tell you what I have done because I’ve always cared about fan noise.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I used to back in my PC days not be able to do much about it for most of the time because I couldn’t afford to try out different

⏹️ ▶️ Marco components, see what was loud. And for years, I had this high-pitched hard drive noise constantly

⏹️ ▶️ Marco in my bedroom because the drive I bought just had like, you know, a bearing that got noisy

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and I was just stuck with it, just have it whirring high pitched loudly for, you know, four years or so.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco But anyway, you know, I got into the like PC case modding scene and put like DynaMAT

⏹️ ▶️ Marco on my PC case and got all these quiet fans and, and, you know, all these major quiet

⏹️ ▶️ Marco heat sinks and these like quiet drive enclosures that would wrap the hard and basically like an enclosure with sound

⏹️ ▶️ Marco insulation inside of it. It was a mess, this whole scene. But, so I care a lot,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and once I got to the point where computers were having only SSDs in them in like the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John last,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know, X years, I have banned spinning hard drives from my office.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And you can too. Now, the way I first did this was I had a big drive

⏹️ ▶️ Marco enclosure that was attached to a Mac mini server that I would put in my office closet.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s a medium-sized closet. There’s no real ventilation in there, but it’s enough space that it wouldn’t really

⏹️ ▶️ Marco overheat. And then after that, I switched my large storage needs to

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a Synology, which is in my garage. So I basically moved the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco noise. And so that’s one option you can do. If you have any kind of network, either network-attached storage device,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco or just another computer you can use with external drives on it or whatever, you can move them outside of your

⏹️ ▶️ Marco office if you have anywhere else that you can put them that would be out of the way and wouldn’t spread the noise. But more recently,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco SSDs are so cheap now that it’s almost to the point, or it might

⏹️ ▶️ Marco already be to the point, where for many people, their mass storage needs can be

⏹️ ▶️ Marco solved by just going all SSD, just plugging in external SSDs to your desktop. And

⏹️ ▶️ Marco once you go that route, you can put them pretty much anywhere because they’re tiny and silent. You can tape them to the back of

⏹️ ▶️ Marco your iMac or stick them under your desk, under the desktop surface. so it’s just like kind of

⏹️ ▶️ Marco adhere to the bottom of your desk or whatever, like going all SSD for your like

⏹️ ▶️ Marco external drives for various backup time machine, whatever. It did seem like this ridiculous

⏹️ ▶️ Marco indulgence until about maybe a year ago. But if I was starting

⏹️ ▶️ Marco from scratch today, and I didn’t already have my garage Synology running all

⏹️ ▶️ Marco my big hard drives in them, I think I would just buy a couple of big like four to

⏹️ ▶️ Marco eight terabyte external SSDs and plug them into my computer and call it a day. At

⏹️ ▶️ Marco no point would I buy a hard drive after this because I just don’t have, I don’t have big enough storage needs where

⏹️ ▶️ Marco going all SSD would be that ridiculous.

⏹️ ▶️ John So I’ve actually been thinking, not about the noise issue, but about spinning

⏹️ ▶️ John versus SSDs for backup purposes because if you

⏹️ ▶️ John get a computer with a big SSD like I just did, then you’re like, oh, how do I back that up? Like it multiplies out if

⏹️ ▶️ John you have multiple backups of the thing. I don’t, you know, and four terabyte SSDs are expensive,

⏹️ ▶️ John right, and you might need more than that if you wanna have multiple versions of files, right? So spinning disks are still in the picture.

⏹️ ▶️ John Obviously, as we’ve noted many times in this program, I am a big fan of network attached storage

⏹️ ▶️ John for this purpose because that means I have a box with eight spinning disks that is noisy and has a

⏹️ ▶️ John terrible buzzing fan. It’s in my basement. Can’t hear it, it’s not in the

⏹️ ▶️ John room. That is ideal. So I have lots of large, cheap storage far away.

⏹️ ▶️ John That said, I also have super duper backups and, you know, time machine, and that’s where internal

⏹️ ▶️ John storage comes in. I know this is not an option for you because you didn’t waste a huge amount of money on a computer

⏹️ ▶️ John with internal storage, but I just did, and guess what? You can put spinning hard drives in here, and as I’ve

⏹️ ▶️ John discussed about- Oh, please don’t. As I’ve discussed with my current computer, the secret to doing that

⏹️ ▶️ John and not driving yourself nuts is unmounting them and then they’ll spin down

⏹️ ▶️ John and then they become silent. And good backup programs will mount

⏹️ ▶️ John them, spin them up, back up to them, and then unmount them and then they’ll be silent again.

⏹️ ▶️ John And if you schedule that to happen, say at 3 a.m., you can schedule a computer to wake up at 3 a.m.,

⏹️ ▶️ John mount its spinning hard drives, back up to them, unmount them, and go back to sleep.

⏹️ ▶️ John You never have to hear them. So this is basically my solution to having spinning disks. If you have to have them,

⏹️ ▶️ John have them be internal. And if you have to have them in their internal, make them not spinning most of the time. And

⏹️ ▶️ John when they do have to spin, don’t be there.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey The Karate Kid 2

⏹️ ▶️ John technique. Don’t be there or just have them spin it briefly. And so I’ve

⏹️ ▶️ John had four, I’ve had the maximum number of internal spinning disks in all of my tower

⏹️ ▶️ John computers. Used to be two, then eventually it was four. I’ve got four drives sitting in my computer right now.

⏹️ ▶️ John One of them is an SSD. It’s a terabyte SSD and I boot from it. and all the other drives are unmounted and spun

⏹️ ▶️ John down, so I don’t have to hear them. So that doesn’t really help with, you know,

⏹️ ▶️ John if you really need to have it online all the time and spinning, well, I don’t know what to tell you. Like, they’re noisy, you know,

⏹️ ▶️ John and if you have external drives, the power bricks are a pain and the enclosures are a pain, and I have a bunch of external

⏹️ ▶️ John drives here, they’re just not actually plugged into anything, so they’re also silent. But yeah, keep them spun

⏹️ ▶️ John down most of the time is the answer or keep them far, far away. Thank

⏹️ ▶️ Casey you. Bye.

#askatp: New design language

⏹️ ▶️ Casey All right. And finally, Kiel asks, Hey guys, I’m thoroughly enjoying your Mac Pro 7,1 coverage. And

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I was wondering if you could see its looks as a departure for a new pro Mac

⏹️ ▶️ Casey design language. For example, do you see an iMac pro with machine drilled holes in its back and

⏹️ ▶️ Casey or using a 45 or 90 degree edges? I hope not because I just spent a whole pile of

⏹️ ▶️ Casey money on an iMac pro. I think if anything, iMacs are

⏹️ ▶️ Casey going to lose a lot of their bezels slash bezels. I don’t I think I see

⏹️ ▶️ Casey this design language trickling down, but I am not confident in that. John, what do you think?

⏹️ ▶️ John I think an iMac Pro that looks like the Pro Display XDR and has a 6K screen

⏹️ ▶️ John would be amazing. Oh, agreed. We talked about this in many past shows

⏹️ ▶️ John that the iMac, that sort of the external case design that’s been with us

⏹️ ▶️ John since the 5K iMac, maybe even before, basically since the 5K iMac. No, even before that,

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco it

⏹️ ▶️ John was

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco the same,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco right? No, it’s since the 27 inch iMac. Yeah, the 27 inch

⏹️ ▶️ John iMac was it. It wasn’t 5K, it was non-retina, right? That external case design, it’s fine and

⏹️ ▶️ John there’s nothing particularly wrong with it and it has served us well. But at a certain point, kind of like cars, you redesign

⏹️ ▶️ John just for the sake of redesigning. Like, and hopefully you redesign, you know, adding enough room for

⏹️ ▶️ John face ID, sensor array, you know, or maybe making one or two things

⏹️ ▶️ John more user accessible or expandable. Like, there’s lots of things that you can do. I would love

⏹️ ▶️ John it if the Mac Pro design language, whether you consider the Swiss cheese holes

⏹️ ▶️ John or just the sort of rectilinear edges, like if that, you know, came

⏹️ ▶️ John to the iMac line. Probably the machining is too

⏹️ ▶️ John expensive for that line and not actually useful, because you don’t need, like look at what the iMac

⏹️ ▶️ John Pro gets away with. It is, you know, silent and cool and has, you know, if you don’t know where to look, you don’t

⏹️ ▶️ John even see where

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey the air comes in and out of the thing,

⏹️ ▶️ John right? So it does not need that many holes, but I do hope that they’re redesigned.

⏹️ ▶️ John And if they can make some kind of family resemblance, even if it’s just the straight edges, I am all

⏹️ ▶️ John for that. So I think it does make sense for

⏹️ ▶️ John there to be a new design and for it to look more related to the Mac Pro, but

⏹️ ▶️ John I’m not willing to predict that it’s literally going to look like the Pro Display XDR.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Thanks to our sponsors this week, Casper, Burrow, and HelloFresh, and we will see you next time.

Ending theme

⏹️ ▶️ Marco next week.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Now the show is over, they didn’t even mean to begin, cause

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it was accidental, oh it was accidental.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey John didn’t do any research, Marco

⏹️ ▶️ John and Casey wouldn’t let him, cause it was accidental, oh

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it was accidental. And you can find the show

⏹️ ▶️ John notes at And if you’re into

⏹️ ▶️ John Twitter,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you can follow them At C-A-S-E-Y-L-I-S-S

⏹️ ▶️ Marco So that’s Casey Liss, M-A-R-C-O-A-R-M The

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Anti-Marco Armen S-I-R-A-C-U-S-A-C-R-A-Q-U-S-A

⏹️ ▶️ John It’s accidental

⏹️ ▶️ Casey They

⏹️ ▶️ John didn’t mean to accidentally Heck that

Learning to drive

⏹️ ▶️ Casey John, is your son learning how to drive yet? And regardless

⏹️ ▶️ Casey of if the answer is yes or no, what is your approach going to be for that?

⏹️ ▶️ John Ooh, he’s just 15, so he can’t be learning to drive yet, but he does, he’s going to soon have to, I think it’s like whatever

⏹️ ▶️ John written test you have to take for your permit when he’s 16. And so he’ll be preparing for that soon enough.

⏹️ ▶️ John He’s, we’re probably going to to sign him up for a instructional driving course

⏹️ ▶️ John over the summer. And beyond that,

⏹️ ▶️ John I mean, it really depends. Like, I can’t tell how motivated he is to actually care about

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey driving. That was my next question.

⏹️ ▶️ John The thing with the kids these days is they are far less motivated to drive in general than previous generations,

⏹️ ▶️ John especially if you live somewhere where there’s reasonable public transportation, which, not by world

⏹️ ▶️ John standards, we do not have reasonable public transportation where I live. U.S. standards, we have semi-reasonable

⏹️ ▶️ John public transportation where I live. So we’ll see what

⏹️ ▶️ John his motivation is. But if he is motivated, I am willing to teach him

⏹️ ▶️ John how to drive stick on a car that is not mine.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Oh, well, OK. How are you going to do that, tough guy?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Right. Also, both of the cars in your family are stick, right?

⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah. So there is one car that is not mine. So

⏹️ ▶️ Marco he has to learn stick, and it has to be not on your car. Yeah.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John Exactly. Yeah,

⏹️ ▶️ John enjoy. So maybe he doesn’t want to learn stick. If he doesn’t want to learn stick, fine. But

⏹️ ▶️ John you’re never going to learn how to drive just by taking a driver education instructional course. You have to actually have time

⏹️ ▶️ John to practice elsewhere or whatever. So we could find ourselves buying

⏹️ ▶️ John a used Honda Civic with an automatic transmission for it to be like, quote unquote, his car,

⏹️ ▶️ John if he thinks he even needs one at all and wants to learn how to

⏹️ ▶️ John drive. Like, I don’t want him to end up like a lot of people that I know who are only a few years younger than me

⏹️ ▶️ John that just made it deep into adulthood never knowing how to drive. Just because

⏹️ ▶️ John I feel like it’s a useful skill that you should have, even if you don’t use it, even if you just take public transportation everywhere, it’s good

⏹️ ▶️ John to know how to drive and to become comfortable with it because like so many things, I think,

⏹️ ▶️ John driving well, there’s no substitute for experience. And as you get

⏹️ ▶️ John old, it becomes harder to learn new things. So don’t wait until you’re 57 to start

⏹️ ▶️ John learning how to drive. Maybe get that over with when you’re young and spry

⏹️ ▶️ John and more likely to survive the inevitable accidents you’re going to get into.

⏹️ ▶️ John And maybe young enough that your parents will help pay for the damage you do to yourself and society.

⏹️ ▶️ John Just the traditional American path of learning to drive is that you learn when you’re a teenager, you

⏹️ ▶️ John are a terrible driver, you cause havoc, you hopefully don’t kill yourself or others, And you make it through

⏹️ ▶️ John to adulthood being a competent enough driver to, as we all know,

⏹️ ▶️ John not let them touch

⏹️ ▶️ Marco when you’re out there on the road. Doesn’t this kind of apply to everything you learn when you’re a teenager? Like you learn

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a crappy version of everything when you’re a teenager. You’re reckless, you try not to die. Most people succeed in that,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and then eventually they become an adult who is slightly better at

⏹️ ▶️ John things. Yeah, and arguably it’d be better to learn when you are like 26 or something, but

⏹️ ▶️ John it’s like, it depends on, what time do you have in life to do this? Like if you actually do need a car,

⏹️ ▶️ John you probably want to be able to drive one and have a license

⏹️ ▶️ John before you turn 26 and are entering the job market.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco I don’t know. I don’t

⏹️ ▶️ Marco know. I don’t know. Well, because for a lot of people, you need a car to get to a job, and most people start having jobs well

⏹️ ▶️ Marco before they’re 26. So that I think is, that’s probably one of the reasons

⏹️ ▶️ John why. If this generation of children is able to improve our country to the point where we have

⏹️ ▶️ John a less dire public transportation situation, there’s no reason we should all have to have cars.

⏹️ ▶️ John We could fix this in other ways. But I’m not particularly optimistic

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco that that’s going to happen. That’s putting quite a lot

⏹️ ▶️ John on them. For a variety of reasons. As the saying goes, you could tell how advanced the country is

⏹️ ▶️ John by whether it has good public transportation. And the real thing is, do the rich and powerful also take

⏹️ ▶️ John public transportation? That is like the S-tier, top-level country development

⏹️ ▶️ John and whatever the tech tree is for civilization. Do all the rich people take public transportation?

⏹️ ▶️ John Now you’re cooking with gas.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey The US, by the way, is nowhere near that phase. Public

⏹️ ▶️ John transportation isn’t even available for huge swaths of people because there’s just no

⏹️ ▶️ John public transportation available to them without traveling for many miles. And then when it is available, it’s bad

⏹️ ▶️ John and relatively expensive and yada

⏹️ ▶️ Marco yada. I think New York might be having that status.

⏹️ ▶️ John They take helicopters. When they want to go to the Hamptons, they

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey take a

⏹️ ▶️ Casey helicopter. Well, how

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John rich are we

⏹️ ▶️ Casey talking? No, no, no. I disagree. I think Marco is correct. The greater New York area

⏹️ ▶️ Casey does have functional and reasonably decent public transportation.

⏹️ ▶️ John Maybe I should amend that. The wealthiest people take public transportation and don’t hate it.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey Because

⏹️ ▶️ John I think

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey if you are very well used to

⏹️ ▶️ John it, and you have to take a subway to get somewhere and the subway is like late and or flooded

⏹️ ▶️ John and or gross smelling, like it’s It’s not, you know, well, that’s just the subway. I know, but like

⏹️ ▶️ John elsewhere in the world, elsewhere in the world, it doesn’t there. We have better trains that go faster or

⏹️ ▶️ John quieter and cleaner and are on time much more often and are taken by everybody. And often

⏹️ ▶️ John there aren’t. They are the best option. That’s what I’m getting is when they’re the best option, not because they’re taking it just to

⏹️ ▶️ John be like, oh, I’m taking public transportation, aren’t I? Good. Like it’s literally the best option. Like you prefer it

⏹️ ▶️ John because why bother driving yourself when you can just go somewhere and have a comfortable experience

⏹️ ▶️ John and the thing will be on time and it won’t be crowded and it’ll be clean and silent and fast.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah right you got me there.