393: We’re the Bit Company27 Aug 2020
Apple’s continued battle with Epic, antitrust concerns, and trouble in John’s computing paradise.
- Black. Lives. Matter.
- Bump starts and heel/toe
- Design resources for developers
- “Seasons”, and Chapter 2 Season 4
- Cross-play won’t work anymore (via The Verge)
- Corporate Relationship Management
- Microsoft weighs in
- Judge’s ruling
- Apple’s gross and greedy behavior
- How much of the macOS reviews of yore changed during the writing process? (via James Andrews)
- What do we use to filter spam? (via Michael Boyle)
- How should we store our older cables? (via Chris Anderson)
- Post-show: John’s Mac Pro Tale of Woe
- Linode: Instantly deploy and manage an SSD server in the Linode Cloud. New accounts get a $20 credit with code atp2020.
- Backblaze: Unlimited cloud backup for just $6/month. Start a free 15-day trial today.
- Mint Mobile: Get your new wireless plan for just $15/month with free shipping.
Become a member for sponsor-free episodes and our “bootleg” feed released about a day before the edited version of the show!
- Black Lives [Continue To] Matter
- Follow-up: Driving stick
- Follow-up: Design for devs
- Sponsor: Mint Mobile
- Epic v. Apple updates
- Sponsor: Backblaze
- Antitrust and Apple
- What would you change?
- Sponsor: Linode (code atp2020)
- #askatp: Mac OS reviews
- #askatp: Spam filtering
- #askatp: Cable hoarding
- Ending theme
- John’s Mac Pro Woes
⏹️ ▶️ John I have more issues than that. You can see in the after show. I can tell you about them
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Oh, no. I just saw what it labeled in the show notes.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Now I can’t wait to get there.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah. We got to hurry this along. We got a pile of follow-up to get through. Should
⏹️ ▶️ Marco All right. Hey, Apple did a bunch of stuff and they’re dicks. Let’s go. After show.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey All right. Thanks to Leno, Minbumble, and Backblaze and our members. Okay. So, John, let’s talk after
⏹️ ▶️ John Can’t rush. Got to go through the whole show. We have a format.
⏹️ ▶️ John Ostensibly. Right. Bye.
Black Lives [Continue To] Matter
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Hey, all joking aside, I don’t know
⏹️ ▶️ Casey what to say or what we should say or if we should say, but I think we should
⏹️ ▶️ Casey say something to reiterate, hey, Black people are people too,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Black lives do indeed matter. And it would be super cool if like police stopped attempting
⏹️ ▶️ Casey to murder them all the time.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Not just attempting, actually murdering.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And often, and often succeeding in murdering them all the time. Like, why is this
⏹️ ▶️ Casey still a thing? I just, I just, I know
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I’m being incoherent and I apologize because I feel wholly unqualified to
⏹️ ▶️ Casey talk about any of this, but it’s, well, I was going to say it’s flared up again, but it never
⏹️ ▶️ Casey really went away. It’s just people are paying attention again. And
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I just, I feel like it would be wrong not to recognize and reiterate that I I speak for all three of us
⏹️ ▶️ Casey in saying that we believe that everyone, irrespective
⏹️ ▶️ Casey of the color of their skin or where they come from or what they believe,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey everyone is a person, everyone’s life is valuable. And it is inappropriate
⏹️ ▶️ Casey for any police officer to unilaterally decide to end somebody’s life in
⏹️ ▶️ Casey almost every circumstance. And I’m really disgusted that this is still a debate
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that we have to have and still something that we need to talk about. And I don’t know, Marco, if you need to cut all this out because I’m making
⏹️ ▶️ Casey no sense, I totally understand. But I feel like I need to, at least for me, say
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that this grosses all three of us out deeply. We’re really upset by it and
⏹️ ▶️ Casey we want to reiterate again Black Lives Matter.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, this is not something that’s going to just go away. I mean,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that’s part of the horrible, insidious nature of racism
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and of horrible police culture and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco misconduct and everything. It doesn’t just go away with a couple of weeks of
⏹️ ▶️ Marco being in the news. It’s a systemic, deeply rooted problem with lots
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of facets that all have to be addressed. And it’s good that people are
⏹️ ▶️ Marco still protesting. good that this is still, you know, on people’s minds enough to actually
⏹️ ▶️ Marco make noise about it because it’s not solved. It didn’t get solved in, what was it, June? It didn’t get solved
⏹️ ▶️ Marco because it can’t get solved that quickly. It’s a very complicated set of problems and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco this is not news to black people. They know, they they know very well, too well, that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco this is not something that’s just gonna go away in two seconds. And so I think it’s important that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco we keep the spotlight on this. Keep the spotlight on any kind
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of racism or bias or violence that we see like this, that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco we don’t let up. We don’t move on to the next hot thing in the news
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and forget about all this stuff. That’s still very much a problem, and it’s not going to have a quick or easy fix,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco but we shouldn’t give up and move on just because something else happened.
⏹️ ▶️ John I had to look this up because I didn’t know the source and I didn’t get the exact wording. I I didn’t know the exact wording off the top of my head, but here’s
⏹️ ▶️ John Frederick Douglass. This always comes to mind when I see these things. Power concedes nothing without a demand.
⏹️ ▶️ John It never did and never will. Find out just what any people will quietly submit to, and you have found the
⏹️ ▶️ John exact measure of injustice and wrong which will be imposed upon them. So yeah, we can’t be quiet.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey indeed. All right, and our hearts are obviously out for
⏹️ ▶️ Casey everyone who is living this. I mean, the three of us are very lucky for a plethora of different reasons,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey but in no small part because of the color of our skin. And that’s really kind of messed up, isn’t it? If you think about it,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey like it’s just wrong that that’s even an issue, but here we are. We have a whole bunch of
⏹️ ▶️ Casey followup to go through. In fact, I’ll be impressed if we make it through the followup and anything beyond
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that. But a lot of this stuff I think is important within the sphere of
⏹️ ▶️ Casey our little world. It’s not important compared to what we just talked about, but it’s important for our little corner
Follow-up: Driving stick
⏹️ ▶️ Casey First and maybe not importantly at all, I was going to say most importantly, but that’s not true. But first
⏹️ ▶️ Casey off, I’d like to just briefly mention a couple of things about our post-show neutral last week. First and least
⏹️ ▶️ Casey importantly. Yes, exactly right. I forgot to mention, we forgot to mention,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey one of the advantages of driving a stick is that you can bump or push start it, which is to say,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey in certain circumstances, particularly with older cars where a lot of this was less computerized,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey you can actually push the car physically push the car or, you know, send it down a hill
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and then pop the clutch if you’re in second gear and cause that to start the car. And I’m
⏹️ ▶️ Casey leaving out a few details here, but that’s a really neat thing that we didn’t mention that I think you should look into if you’re at all interested in
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that sort of thing. Additionally, I think a lot of people, and maybe
⏹️ ▶️ Casey this was our fault, I didn’t listen back to the episode, but a lot of people took what we were saying, John and I particularly, was saying
⏹️ ▶️ Casey as this is the only proper way to drive a stick. And that
⏹️ ▶️ Casey certainly was not my intention, and I don’t think it was John’s either. We were saying, hey, you know, we were asked, what are some ways you
⏹️ ▶️ Casey can level up, you know, being a driver of a manual transmission car? And here’s some things you can consider.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey You can consider engine braking. You can consider heel-toe and things of that nature. A lot of people seemed
⏹️ ▶️ Casey very fired up that we thought that heel-toe is required. No, of course not. Absolutely not.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey But it’s just something that you can consider if you would like to level up driving a
⏹️ ▶️ Casey stick. So any thoughts on that, John?
⏹️ ▶️ John I feel like people in Europe just need us to acknowledge that yes, we know manual transmission cars are more common
⏹️ ▶️ John guess that’s not clear from the history of the show, but maybe we didn’t mention enough unless
⏹️ ▶️ John know we know there’s more than there. I wish there was more here, but there’s not. We live in a very automatic filled
⏹️ ▶️ John world. But anyway, lots of people from Europe and other areas told us not only a stick shift transmission is
⏹️ ▶️ John very common there, but you get a different kind of license. If you can’t drive one, you get like a more limited license.
⏹️ ▶️ John And a lot of the things that we were talking about, I know you just like Casey, like, oh, These are things you don’t have to do, but some
⏹️ ▶️ John of the listeners were going to tell us if you don’t do, for example, downshifting or engine braking, you will fail the driving test in their country.
⏹️ ▶️ John So it’s a big wide world out there. But anyway, here I am in America
⏹️ ▶️ John with my stick shift cars, one of the last holdouts.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey You and me both, my friend.
Follow-up: Design for devs
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Moving on, an Ask ATP last week was with regard to design resources
⏹️ ▶️ Casey for developers. So hey, I’m a developer who wants to make better designs, but I’m
⏹️ ▶️ Casey not innately capable of it. What can I do? And Jesse Martinez wrote in and wrote, I’m a technically
⏹️ ▶️ Casey minded designer that loves supporting developers as a hobby. There are a bunch of people like me lurking on subreddits
⏹️ ▶️ Casey like UI underscore design. We’ll put a link in the show notes, where we help improve people’s designs. There have been several
⏹️ ▶️ Casey occasions where I’ve taken on unpaid app redesigns by developers following Reddit interactions.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And then additionally, a handful of people recommended, I have no experience with either of these things,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey neither UI design, nor a couple of people that recommended refactoring UI, which is
⏹️ ▶️ Casey at refactoringui.com. Again, it’ll be in the show notes, which apparently is learn how to
⏹️ ▶️ Casey design awesome UIs by yourself using specific tactics explained from a developer’s point of view. So
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that is something you can check out as well, and we’ll put it in the show notes.
⏹️ ▶️ John That was more than just a few people. That was the most recommended.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, that got so many reactions, responses, that endorsed it or mentioned it that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I haven’t had a chance to look at it yet, but I think I definitely have to now because of just the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco volume of recommendations it got.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, same. I looked at it a little bit, and I think the reason it got so many recommendations is because it’s broken
⏹️ ▶️ John down into bite-sized pieces. It’s not like you have this big thing dumped on your head. You can go there for 30 seconds,
⏹️ ▶️ John click on one thing, and learn something you didn’t know about design, and be like, wow, I learned something, and it took 30 seconds.
⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t know how deep that rabbit hole goes and how much content there is there. But yeah,
⏹️ ▶️ John I would suggest checking it out. It seems like an easy to consume resource that a lot of people have
⏹️ ▶️ John benefited from because the people who are recommending it have used it. And they say, I did this thing and it helped me with
⏹️ ▶️ John my apps. Maybe in just a couple of small ways, but even that feels good.
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Epic v. Apple updates
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Moving on, Jason Stanfill writes, as a Fortnite player, I thought I should mention that there’s a deadline of sorts with regard
⏹️ ▶️ Casey to the whole Epic Apple thing. Fortnite has seasons that last a couple of months. Each season has an updated
⏹️ ▶️ Casey map and the goal of getting to level 100. And you start at one each new season. The current season
⏹️ ▶️ Casey ends as we record this tomorrow, which is Thursday, the 27th of August. Each new season
⏹️ ▶️ Casey requires an update without being able to update Fortnite on iOS. It will become virtual useless at that point,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey which I did not know and I appreciate it. I think Jason was the first to write in about it, but certainly others have written about it
⏹️ ▶️ John knew that and should have mentioned it because Destiny and many, many other games use the same model. In fact, Destiny
⏹️ ▶️ John was a late adopter of this model. It has lots of different names, but the idea is to keep the game fresh, that there’s
⏹️ ▶️ John some kind of cycle according to the calendar where everyone gets reset back to a certain position
⏹️ ▶️ John or there’s a – it doesn’t really matter. Either there’s a new progression up to a higher level or you get reset and then and you work your way
⏹️ ▶️ John through this ladder during the course of the season and you get a bunch of stuff during the ladder. Anyway, it’s
⏹️ ▶️ John a way to keep people engaged. But what that means is there is a timed cycle for new
⏹️ ▶️ John content. And in the case of Fortnite, as we’ll see in a little bit, it’s not just a little bit of new
⏹️ ▶️ John content. It’s like, if you are not on the same season as everyone else, you can’t even play with them. But we’ll get to that a couple
⏹️ ▶️ John items lower. Lots of epic stuff in the follow-up, surprise.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey So Epic has said, quote, Apple was blocking Fortnite updates and new installs on the App Store and has said they will
⏹️ ▶️ Casey terminate our ability to develop Fortnite for Apple devices. As a result, Fortnite’s newly released Chapter 2
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Season 4 update, which is apparently version 14, will not release on iOS and macOS on August 27th.
⏹️ ▶️ John And macOS. Now, Fortnite for macOS, you download from the web.
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s not, there’s no app store stopping you there. But Epic, for
⏹️ ▶️ John some reason that may or may not make sense, is also saying, yeah, and if you play Fortnite on your
⏹️ ▶️ John Mac, you’re not getting the new season either. I don’t think there is a technical
⏹️ ▶️ John reason for that to be the case, but there may be a kind of screw you reason or
⏹️ ▶️ John a legal reason or like, well, anyway, we’ll continue. But that’s just bad news if you play this on the Mac,
⏹️ ▶️ John that you’re also getting sideswiped by this whole iOS incident, even though there’s nothing
⏹️ ▶️ John stopping Epic from putting, I think, from just putting the new Mac version up on their website and you are
⏹️ ▶️ John pulling it down or updating or I don’t even know if it updates in place, whatever. That’s kind of bad.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Indeed. The Verge writes, quote, “‘Players on iPhone, iPad, and Mac will also lose cross-play
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Fortnite multiplayer with non-Apple platforms,’ Epic confirms to The Verge. That means that
⏹️ ▶️ Casey players on Apple platforms will be stuck on the current version of Fortnite and they’ll only be able to play with one another. Womp womp.”
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, so they won’t have all the new stuff for the new season, and they can’t even play with the people
⏹️ ▶️ John who do. So I guess they can play with each other if you still have the game, and maybe keeping the Mac on the old
⏹️ ▶️ John version too means that the Mac people will be able to play with the iPhone people and that makes the pool of people bigger.
⏹️ ▶️ John So there’s more players for matchmaking. I don’t, I don’t even know the logic behind it, but anyway,
⏹️ ▶️ John that’s, uh, yeah, that’s, these are the sort of, we talked about this before, like, well, as this court case winds
⏹️ ▶️ John on, Epic’s got this, you know, this noncompliant version of fortnight
⏹️ ▶️ John and the app store that lets people buy things bypassing Apple’s, uh, in-app purchase system.
⏹️ ▶️ John But the viability of that thing rapidly diminishes once It’s not
⏹️ ▶️ John keeping up with the rest of the players. And I don’t even know if there’s going to be that many, you know, normally new seasons
⏹️ ▶️ John come with new things to buy with those V bucks. So maybe you can still buy old stuff with the V bucks. But the value
⏹️ ▶️ John of having Fortnite on the store for as long as this court case last is very diminished
⏹️ ▶️ John by the fact by the seasonal model.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah. You know, a couple of people are pointing out in the chat, you know, maybe it’s with regard to code signing
⏹️ ▶️ John We’ll get to that in a little bit in the follow up. But right now, as we’re sitting here right now, I believe
⏹️ ▶️ John there is nothing stopping Epic from properly signing the Mac OS version. Like
⏹️ ▶️ John on August 26th, they still have their developer account, and I think they could sign
⏹️ ▶️ John the new version of Fortnite and give it to Mac users. In
⏹️ ▶️ John the, you know, weeks and months in the future, that may change, but we’ll keep going. There’s more on this later.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Oh, so three hours ago, Tim Sweeney writes, Apple has said that they will revoke all of Epic’s Apple SDK access
⏹️ ▶️ Casey for game development on Friday. If they do that, we won’t be able to update Fortnite on the Mac. We understand from the court that Unreal Engine
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and other non-game efforts will continue to have SDK access.” Again, this is three hours ago as we record
⏹️ ▶️ Casey this from Tim Sweeney himself. But today’s Wednesday, not Friday.
⏹️ ▶️ John Hey, I’m just telling you. That’s what I’m saying. I mean, I understand the whole, we’ll get to it,
⏹️ ▶️ John the whole, you know, App Store versus your entire developer account. That’s
⏹️ ▶️ Casey thing. All right. So tell me, John, about Epic, console makers, and corporate relationship management, favorite thing in the
⏹️ ▶️ John phrase. Nutbunny’s on Twitter. By the way, if I use your weird
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s probably because I couldn’t find your real name or you didn’t have a real name listed or your real name is too obscene
⏹️ ▶️ John to read on the air. But anyway, Nutbunny’s on Twitter correctly found the thing I was trying to think of the last show, which is like,
⏹️ ▶️ John I know Epic has sparred with console makers over issues like this, too. And my example is just like
⏹️ ▶️ John the console makers had found a way to work out their differences without
⏹️ ▶️ John triggering a lot more with Epic. So we’ll put a link in the show. So two examples of
⏹️ ▶️ John During the the flare-up that I was thinking of and it’s related to cross play So here’s an article from March 2018 It
⏹️ ▶️ John says Microsoft says they are working with epic on possible fortnight cross play for Xbox one cross play is when?
⏹️ ▶️ John People on a particular platform like people on Xbox are able to play fortnight with people
⏹️ ▶️ John who are who have fortnight for the PlayStation, right? obviously console makers especially
⏹️ ▶️ John the dominant console maker, don’t want that to happen because they want you to get a PlayStation
⏹️ ▶️ John and get Fortnite and tell your friends, hey, you should play Fortnite with me. And they say, oh, well,
⏹️ ▶️ John the only way you can play Fortnite with me is you have to get a PlayStation, right? And so they want more people to get PlayStations.
⏹️ ▶️ John But if you’re just a customer, that’s not good for you. You wanna be able to play Fortnite even if your friend already has an Xbox.
⏹️ ▶️ John You don’t have to tell your friend, oh, you have to buy a whole new console, right? This is still a problem on Destiny, by the way. I have
⏹️ ▶️ John friends who play Destiny on Xbox and I can’t play with them because I play Destiny on PlayStation. that’s supposedly changing next
⏹️ ▶️ John year. But anyway, that’s what crossplay is. Epic obviously wants crossplay to be a thing, because the more people
⏹️ ▶️ John can play with each other, the more likely a group of friends with different consoles at home are to get Fortnite and become
⏹️ ▶️ John customers and all play the game together. It’s actually surprisingly difficult to get any kind of reasonable
⏹️ ▶️ John sized group of friends to sort of decide en masse to get the same console. Most
⏹️ ▶️ John people don’t buy every single console. Most people just buy one. And, you
⏹️ ▶️ John know, depending on the console generation, There’s usually one console that is more popular than other, but it’s
⏹️ ▶️ John still a significant percentage of people are going to end up with the other console. So here is a couple of months
⏹️ ▶️ John later in September 2018, an article that says, Fortnite cross-play on PS4 ushers in a new
⏹️ ▶️ John era of the console wars. And in the body of the text, it says, after
⏹️ ▶️ John months of bullish denials, Sony capitulated and will soon allow PS4 players to link
⏹️ ▶️ John up with people on Xbox, Switch, and mobile platforms. This is a thing that Epic wanted
⏹️ ▶️ John that the console makers didn’t and behind the scenes, much pressuring and arguing and perhaps
⏹️ ▶️ John even exchanges of money and promises and things happened. And eventually, essentially, Epic won that battle
⏹️ ▶️ John and forced both console makers to enable crossplay. Now, Microsoft probably wanted to enable
⏹️ ▶️ John crossplay because there are fewer Xbox players than PlayStation players. They’re in the minority. And so
⏹️ ▶️ John they don’t want, you know, those people to feel like, oh, well, you know, law of average most of my friends
⏹️ ▶️ John play Fortnite on PS4 or whatever. And I feel left out with my weird
⏹️ ▶️ John Xbox, so I gotta get a place in here. But Sony was the big holdout of saying, we’re dominating this generation. Why should we
⏹️ ▶️ John allow Xbox players to play with us? Anything we can get to encourage even more, you know, we want to really lean on them when we’re
⏹️ ▶️ John in the lead. But the end result was Epic basically won that and got cross-play,
⏹️ ▶️ John at least for their game and a few other games across all consoles. And that in turn opened the door for other
⏹️ ▶️ John vendors vendors like other software makers like Bungie to eventually
⏹️ ▶️ John work towards doing cross play as well. Like for the longest time they didn’t even mention it. And then when Epic pulled this off, Bungie
⏹️ ▶️ John I think started to get the idea that, you know, this is a thing that we can do. And they started negotiating with the console makers.
⏹️ ▶️ John Anyway, this is an example of corporate relationship management. There’s something that these console
⏹️ ▶️ John makers were doing that was clearly bad for users, like not being able to buy comics in the comiXology app
⏹️ ▶️ John on iOS for some strange reason. Why can’t I play with a friend Xbox? This is the same freaking game, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John And the other two parties were the platform vendor and the third
⏹️ ▶️ John party application maker. And they were fighting with each other over this. And in the end, the situation was
⏹️ ▶️ John worked out such that apparently, the console makers and Epic all came to an agreement that they can live with,
⏹️ ▶️ John and the users got the benefit. That’s corporate relationship management. Apple should go to that school.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Microsoft has weighed in that they support a portion of Epic’s injunction. What?
⏹️ ▶️ John Speaking of relationship management, hey, Microsoft, buddy, pal, remember we worked out that deal where,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, well, we sold you Gears of War and you paid us a lot of money to develop stuff for your platform. And we
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, there’s money going back and forth between Epic and all these companies, a whole bunch. It doesn’t mean they’re super big friends. It
⏹️ ▶️ John just means they know that they need each other. And in this case, Microsoft, you know, filed this brief
⏹️ ▶️ John that said like they didn’t say anything about the App Store or anything about that. But it said basically
⏹️ ▶️ John Apple threatening to revoke Epic’s developer account,
⏹️ ▶️ John basically stopping them from developing the Unreal Engine and everything, that’s bad for us because we, Microsoft,
⏹️ ▶️ John also have a bunch of games from third-party developers that use the Unreal Engine.
⏹️ ▶️ John And anything that damages the viability of Unreal Engine in the market also potentially damages games that people
⏹️ ▶️ John are making for our stuff. Because they could say, well, we were gonna use Unreal Engine, but now there’s all this doubt around
⏹️ ▶️ John it, so maybe we have to retool and use a different engine, or if we if we if we make it with this engine, maybe you have to pay
⏹️ ▶️ John us more money because now we can’t we can’t ever port this to apple platforms because you know apple won’t allow it on there. So suddenly
⏹️ ▶️ John the stuff we’re developing is less valuable to us. So we have to renegotiate our agreement. So that’s why microsoft is chiming
⏹️ ▶️ John in here, right? You know, I don’t think they’re super buddy buddy with epic, but they
⏹️ ▶️ John recognize when their interests are aligned. It’s bad for everybody in the industry to
⏹️ ▶️ John some degree. If unreal engine becomes unviable on apple’s platforms because anyone developed
⏹️ ▶️ John the The whole point of these engines is develop a game on this engine and potentially
⏹️ ▶️ John put it on multiple platforms.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And then as we record, it was a day or two back that a judge has ruled in
⏹️ ▶️ Casey the Apple Epic temporary restraining order. And I think you will probably
⏹️ ▶️ Casey have more to say on this, but my understanding is that Apple cannot
⏹️ ▶️ Casey prevent Epic from doing work that relates to Unreal Engine. in
⏹️ ▶️ Casey support of, you know, other companies and stuff like that. But they are perfectly allowed
⏹️ ▶️ Casey to tell Epic to go outside and play hide and go screw themselves when it comes to Fortnite. Since Epic
⏹️ ▶️ Casey made that mess and they made it for themselves, they get to clean it up themselves. So
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that seems to be the short, short version, which I think makes sense. I don’t know. I keep going back
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and forth on all this and I probably will for a while. But I think that that makes sense to me.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah. I mean, I don’t know all the legal stuff, but this is the type of thing where Apple was going to
⏹️ ▶️ John make changes. You know, they had a deadline for terminating the account and they pulled the app or whatever. And Epic
⏹️ ▶️ John did whatever the thing you do in court is basically says, hey, judge, tell us, like before we were going to have a court case eventually,
⏹️ ▶️ John and those things take forever. But before that happens, like while we’re waiting for the court case
⏹️ ▶️ John to finish, stop Apple from doing these things that damage us. And Epic, of course,
⏹️ ▶️ John said, we want our app back in the app store. And we want not to have our account back. Yeah, Epic asked for
⏹️ ▶️ John everything. And the judge said, some of your requests are reasonable. Apple. Where is the
⏹️ ▶️ John quote? Let’s see. This is a paraphrase of the judge’s opinion during the hearing.
⏹️ ▶️ John With respect to Unreal Engine, that seems like an overreach. The contract with Epic International. I’ll get to that in a second.
⏹️ ▶️ John Is not in breach, even if the contract with Epic Games is. She says that it looks retaliatory to her. So
⏹️ ▶️ John the judge thought, as we said, that Apple was being a bully. And this is like a retaliation
⏹️ ▶️ John for, you know, the actual issue is let’s talk about fortnight and what it did wrong and everything like that. But because just because apple
⏹️ ▶️ John can punish epic in this way, it seemed like it was just retaliatory. So again, this is not a decision
⏹️ ▶️ John about like what is going to happen. This is just while we figure out what’s going to happen while this court case winds on
⏹️ ▶️ John and on for now apple, you can’t kill uh epics, a developer
⏹️ ▶️ John account. Now that that’s why I’m confused by the tim sweeney things because I know this temporary restraining order,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, this isn’t a decision on anything. It just says while we figure out what the real decision is going to be
⏹️ ▶️ John on these things, Apple can’t terminate the account. That’s my understanding of it anyway. So I’m not sure why
⏹️ ▶️ John Tim Sweeney still says, oh, they said they’re going to take away our stuff. The nuance that in this decision,
⏹️ ▶️ John we’ll put PDF links if you want, they’re actually, they’re actually possible to read. Like it’s, it’s in regular
⏹️ ▶️ John English and not weird legalese. You can actually read them and understand it. Um, is that there actually is a separate
⏹️ ▶️ John legal entity for Unreal Engine and there’s these companies with different names that, you know, combine
⏹️ ▶️ John or whatever. And anyway, Apple’s argument is that Unreal Games, Unreal International,
⏹️ ▶️ John we understand this is all the same company behind the scenes. And maybe you have two different developer accounts, but as far as we’re
⏹️ ▶️ John concerned, we take it as all the same thing. And the judge’s opinion is like, yeah, that’s whatever. I
⏹️ ▶️ John understand what you’re saying, but your beef is with this particular game, Fortnite, that broke your
⏹️ ▶️ John rules. You can’t just sort of do this, you know, and now we’ll do everything bad we can possibly
⏹️ ▶️ John do to you to retaliate for it, at least not until some sort of court decision comes down. And that’s going to take a while. Right.
⏹️ ▶️ John And some other interesting facts out of the arguments that lawyers put forth. I would suggest
⏹️ ▶️ John reading Sarah junk’s tweet thread about this because she’s there just reporting what the different
⏹️ ▶️ John lawyers say. So you can kind of hear their arguments and one of the arguments from one of Apple’s
⏹️ ▶️ John lawyers, Richard Doran, he said, I think it’s also a paraphrase. Most of epics
⏹️ ▶️ John business has nothing to do with iOS. The iOS platformers about 12% of epic’s revenue. Most of their platforms
⏹️ ▶️ John are elsewhere. Epic only went mobile in 2018 and they did so on android and ios. All right so that was one
⏹️ ▶️ John of the questions like can epic afford to just stick this out and say
⏹️ ▶️ John you know i’m we’re not going to fix our game we’re not going to put in an app purchase back we’re just going to wait and to see the
⏹️ ▶️ John result of this court case right even if our season ends and you know it becomes useless on not useless
⏹️ ▶️ John but much less useful for people on apple’s platforms mobile gaming is huge mobile
⏹️ ▶️ John gaming I think is the majority of gaming revenue at this point, like globally, right? But as far as Epic’s
⏹️ ▶️ John concerned, they started as a PC developer and became PC and consoles
⏹️ ▶️ John and only recently entered mobile. So even though iOS and mobile are both huge,
⏹️ ▶️ John iOS specifically is only 12%. And that’s, I mean, that’s a big chunk of revenue, but it’s not like it’s 70%
⏹️ ▶️ John of their revenue or it’s not even 50%. So that I think explains, I thought it would be, it was
⏹️ ▶️ John much more of their revenue. I didn’t realize that their entry into mobile was so early. And presumably
⏹️ ▶️ John Apple’s lawyers would know how much it is of their revenue because they know how much they pay Epic and they know how much Epic’s
⏹️ ▶️ John revenue is from their filings and they can figure it all out. But anyway, tidbits like that are
⏹️ ▶️ John littered throughout this very short, maybe like six or seven page PDF. So you should
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It just makes me upset. I just, I hate, every time
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Apple in any way, whether it’s a lawyer or one of their execs or a stupid study they
⏹️ ▶️ Marco do on the website, every time they try to defend their behavior around
⏹️ ▶️ Marco App Store rules and money hoarding, they basically set developers on fire. They have
⏹️ ▶️ Marco such incredibly tone deaf characterizations and phrasing,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco like their thing last month about, or whatever that was, but hey, about how they didn’t contribute
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to the App Store with Basecamp, the wording they choose to use, the arguments they choose to make,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it makes me ashamed to be a fan of this company. And it makes me extra ashamed
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to be a developer for this company and for this App Store. And I love Apple
⏹️ ▶️ Marco so much in so many other ways for so many other reasons. We’re all such big fans of them.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And it hurts me to see this company that I’m such a big fan of
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and that I’m so involved with, be such a jerk in this other way. Like,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco they have such an incredible failure to read the room. They have such an incredibly like tone
⏹️ ▶️ Marco deaf and a flat out wrong view of developers
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and their role in the App Store and the App Store’s role in contributing
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to the iPhone. It makes me so upset to see any of this stuff. And they just
⏹️ ▶️ Marco keep digging and digging and digging. Apple’s arguments, and I’m not even talking so much
⏹️ ▶️ Marco about the particulars against Epic, because yeah, Epic’s being a jerk in different ways too.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I don’t care about Epic. That’s not the thing. I’m talking more broadly about
⏹️ ▶️ Marco their incredibly increased aggression towards in-app purchase
⏹️ ▶️ Marco in the last few months, and what they did with the WordPress app. That’s terrible.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Apple has been so much more aggressive
⏹️ ▶️ Marco in general, seemingly in the last year or so, and especially in the last six months, around
⏹️ ▶️ Marco squeezing more and more out of in-app purchase exceptions and rules.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I can’t stand to be associated with them right now. I just can’t stand it. They are
⏹️ ▶️ Marco ruining their relationship among an entire generation of developers.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco This relationship’s always been strained. The App Store has always, the whole concept of requiring app review
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and having all these rules and having rejections and all the different levels
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of enforcement they’ve had over the years and inconsistency, this has already been a strained relationship
⏹️ ▶️ Marco ever since the App Store began 12 years ago. But they have just taken
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a turn for the worse recently, so much so that I’ve considered the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco possibility, I know this sounds crazy, I’ve considered the possibility that what
⏹️ ▶️ Marco What if they want to get rid of some of these rules because they think it’s a little much and a little wrong
⏹️ ▶️ Marco too, but they know that if they just do it, they might face a shareholder
⏹️ ▶️ Marco lawsuit? So what if they are provoking government regulation
⏹️ ▶️ Marco by going so over the top that they are regulated and therefore
⏹️ ▶️ Marco then they can tell the shareholders, we had to do this? But I know that’s unlikely. Almost impossible.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco saying that’s what I think is going on, but I’m saying their behavior is so ridiculous
⏹️ ▶️ Marco in this area recently. It’s so over-the-top, it’s so insanely
⏹️ ▶️ Marco greedy and aggressive and hostile and just…
⏹️ ▶️ Marco they’re doing everything wrong from a developer relations point of view, from a corporate relations point of view,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco from avoiding any trust regulation. They’re doing everything as wrong as possible
⏹️ ▶️ Marco in this area. So over-the-top ridiculous, so offensive,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco so like just abrasive towards everyone, and so just unabashedly
⏹️ ▶️ Marco shamelessly greedy and stingy and just… they’re being such
⏹️ ▶️ Marco jerks about this whole thing. I can only conclude as like a hopeful point
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of view that where I hope this company has not gone insane, I hope that this is all
⏹️ ▶️ Marco some big strategy to get themselves regulated because the more likely
⏹️ ▶️ Marco alternative is that they just are these massively greedy horrible jerks
⏹️ ▶️ Marco now. And I just can’t stomach that.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, a lot of the arguments when it comes to legal cases, like it’s a lawyer’s job to find every possible
⏹️ ▶️ John argument and to use the ones that are most effective given the legal precedence and everything. So if you see an
⏹️ ▶️ John argument in a court case and it seems really terrible, in some respects it’s like, well, but that’s what court cases
⏹️ ▶️ John are about. Like you kind of have to check your shame at the door and say, look, do you want to win this court case? That’s why you pay me. I’m a lawyer.
⏹️ ▶️ John I’m telling you this is your strongest argument. Go with this. And so they make arguments that from the outside look ridiculous
⏹️ ▶️ John or silly or, you know, ineffective or put Apple in a bad light. But legally speaking,
⏹️ ▶️ John may give them the victory they want. And in general, that’s a calculated risk. Say, well, most people don’t follow details of court cases,
⏹️ ▶️ John so that’s fine. Problem in this situation is a lot of these arguments that Marco is having a strong reaction to were made
⏹️ ▶️ John before a court case existed, before epic sued them, before any of this happened. Oh, Apple was doing
⏹️ ▶️ John that because like in a court case, you use all the tools at your disposal. Apple itself
⏹️ ▶️ John directly made these arguments essentially to the public as a form of PR. And that’s back when we were saying, Apple, this
⏹️ ▶️ John is not this is not good public relations here. You don’t realize how you’re coming off maybe
⏹️ ▶️ John to developers. I mean, maybe you’re trying to appeal to users, but developers see the same thing. And in fact, they’re paying more attention to
⏹️ ▶️ John it. So that’s that’s a lot of the problem here. And it’s a lot of the exact same arguments. Like I think at one point there was a
⏹️ ▶️ John quote from somebody who might have been Phil Schiller. I I don’t remember, of talking about how Epic uses
⏹️ ▶️ John metal in their games and how Epic was on stage with Apple, saying
⏹️ ▶️ John how great metal was, because we’ve seen that at various WWDCs and other conferences, and how Apple
⏹️ ▶️ John doesn’t charge anything for metal. And as one developer pointed out, it’s like, it’s
⏹️ ▶️ John not compelling. It’s not compelling for you to say, all these APIs we give you, we let you have Xcode, and we let
⏹️ ▶️ John you do these APIs, and we pay to develop them. It’s like, yeah, you’re a platform, and we’re third-party developers. That’s how it works.
⏹️ ▶️ John We, you know, like, what do you expect to happen? Like, you know, if you thought you
⏹️ ▶️ John could charge for them, you would, but, you know, it’s a competitive advantage not to charge for them in your applications. And
⏹️ ▶️ John anyway, OpenGL, an alternative thing, you deprecate it. So what are we, of course we’re gonna use Metal,
⏹️ ▶️ John because you get rid of the API. You can not make a game, it’s like, see how they love
⏹️ ▶️ John Metal? Like that’s, I mean, the whole conversion to Metal, that’s an example of good corporate relationship management.
⏹️ ▶️ John Apple has strategic goals, they want to switch to Metal because they’re gonna make their own GPUs their own system on a chips and they,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, like they, they want more control over their graphics destiny, but they need developers to go along with that. So
⏹️ ▶️ John they found a way to work out, you know, a situation with the big game engine developers
⏹️ ▶️ John to say, we need you to get onto metal. I know you don’t want to do it because your engine works okay in OpenGL now, but here
⏹️ ▶️ John is, you know, the stick is we’re going to take away OpenGL eventually. And the carrot is, hey, you can be on stage and we’ll show your
⏹️ ▶️ John games and whatever. There you go. You did it. See, win, win, win. Of course, now when they’re in a fight,
⏹️ ▶️ John that comes flying back and says, You seem to like us when you were doing the metal stuff and we didn’t charge you for metal. Aren’t
⏹️ ▶️ John we awesome? It’s like, that’s not a good argument. It doesn’t make you look good, Apple. Like again, maybe in court that’s good,
⏹️ ▶️ John but they made that argument before court of how like, how great Apple is that they would provide these APIs for you. We spend all this
⏹️ ▶️ John money to make these APIs and you ingrates and we don’t even charge you for it. I can’t believe you ingrates. And it’s
⏹️ ▶️ John just, it’s not, it’s not a, maybe it’s a good legal argument. I
⏹️ ▶️ John don’t know. We’ll see, but it’s, it certainly doesn’t play well with developers. And I think
⏹️ ▶️ John users, users who aren’t listening to tech podcasts probably have no awareness of any of this other than Apple and
⏹️ ▶️ John Epic are fighting and Fortnite broke on my kid’s phone, right? And that’s still not a good look for Apple.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, even that, I think that is, you know, I don’t think we, because we are not like
⏹️ ▶️ Marco big Fortnite players, I don’t think we fully understand the impact of that. And I’m glad that, you know, listening
⏹️ ▶️ Marco for it and to explain things like the season, which I didn’t know about. But like, I think often, like, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco right, You know, my kid has an iPad, he uses it constantly. The
⏹️ ▶️ Marco two things he uses it most for are YouTube and Minecraft.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco If, you know, he hasn’t discovered Fortnite yet, he’s a little young for it, but I thought like, what if this
⏹️ ▶️ Marco happened to Minecraft? What if Minecraft stopped being available on the iPad
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and, you know, stopped getting updates, you couldn’t play online anymore, and maybe it even, you know, did the whole like, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco developer revocation thing where it would stop launching. I think he would never touch
⏹️ ▶️ Marco his iPad again. That would put him off the platform for a long time. Like, here’s what would probably happen.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco You know, Minecraft is such a big part of his life that, like, we don’t think is a bad thing and we support that, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco with limits, but, you know, we support that. So it’s such a thing that, like, if his
⏹️ ▶️ Marco primary Minecraft device stopped being able to run Minecraft, guess what we would do? We’d probably get him an Xbox
⏹️ ▶️ Marco or a gaming PC and he would just switch to that. and yet he would never touch the iPad again.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So that would be a user on Apple’s platform that they would just lose for a long time, possibly
⏹️ ▶️ Marco forever. And I think while, again, while I don’t give two craps about
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Epic, and I think they’re being jerks in their own way throughout some of this, I do think
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that’s not to be overlooked, that it is gonna be a significant cost to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Apple’s platform to have all these millions probably
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of gamers Now, like, you know, Apple’s platforms have always kind of
⏹️ ▶️ Marco been second-class citizens for major gaming, but now this is like a major loss
⏹️ ▶️ Marco for them, and all those gamers who were playing Fortnite on iOS devices,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco how many of those people are going to blame Epic for this? Probably not a lot. Epic’s done a really good job
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of showing all of them this is Apple’s fault. Even though, again, I think it is mostly Epic’s
⏹️ ▶️ Marco fault, but look, that’s beside the point. What all these people are learning from
⏹️ ▶️ Marco this campaign that Epic is waging is that Apple’s doing this to them. This isn’t just being
⏹️ ▶️ Marco fought in the tech press, in the developer press. This is being fought in the public. And Epic has
⏹️ ▶️ Marco brought all these users in. And all those customers, all those gamers, they’re
⏹️ ▶️ Marco all going to have a pretty big reason to stop using their iOS devices or to beg their parents
⏹️ ▶️ Marco or to themselves buy a different system to play their games on now. And
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that is going to hurt Apple to some degree. It’s not going to put the company out of business or anything, but that is going
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to be felt. This is a significant difference here in this fight compared to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco other fights that mostly happen behind the scenes in closed business dealings and the companies
⏹️ ▶️ Marco didn’t want to drag it out into the public or couldn’t drag it out into the public. This one is starting in the public and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s really, really big and it affects a lot of people and it’s making Apple
⏹️ ▶️ Marco look like the big bad guy that, frankly, they pretty much are in
⏹️ ▶️ Marco this area to millions of gamers and millions of customers who before
⏹️ ▶️ Marco weren’t part of these fights, weren’t part of these discussions, didn’t follow this kind of news. Now they’re in it
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and they’re all going to get this horrible impression of Apple that could last a long time.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah. I mean, something that’s helping Apple a little bit here is that, uh, Apple’s platforms are basically
⏹️ ▶️ John third class platforms when it comes to fortnight. Right. Cause like the serious players are playing on PC
⏹️ ▶️ John because you can get the highest frame rate, highest res, and you can use mouse and keyboard and all that other stuff. And then consoles
⏹️ ▶️ John are the second tier. And touch input iOS devices is
⏹️ ▶️ John third tier. Not that there aren’t a lot of users, because there are a lot of users or whatever, but it’s only 12% of Epic’s revenue, but 12% is still not nothing.
⏹️ ▶️ John But in general, I think Apple has helped that like people
⏹️ ▶️ John don’t buy iPads to play Fortnite, right? It’s a thing they can do on the iPads that they have,
⏹️ ▶️ John But if they get super into Fortnite, they are going to eventually get a game console or PC as they get
⏹️ ▶️ John older. They will graduate from it because it’s not the ideal platform for that type of game. It’s great
⏹️ ▶️ John that it’s on there, it’s a benefit to Apple, but it’s not like, for example, losing Facebook
⏹️ ▶️ John on the iPhone. Because Facebook is natively like an iPhone. I
⏹️ ▶️ John know this is a weird thing to say, but a lot of people read Facebook on their iPhone. There is no first-class platform
⏹️ ▶️ John for Facebook that is not your phone. That is the first-class platform. So again, Epic is obviously
⏹️ ▶️ John not as big as Facebook and it’s not as used by as many people or whatever. Just to give an example, like Apple’s isolated
⏹️ ▶️ John from this a little bit because it’s bad if Fortnite
⏹️ ▶️ John never comes back on the platform, but every single one of those users can and probably
⏹️ ▶️ John was going to inevitably transition to playing Fortnite on a different platform. I don’t think anybody
⏹️ ▶️ John is willingly playing Fortnite on an iPad as they age out of childhood
⏹️ ▶️ John into teen years, into adulthood. Like, if you’re an adult, I don’t know how many adults, unless
⏹️ ▶️ John they’re really, really forced to and they don’t have any other choice, are willingly playing Fortnite on an iPad
⏹️ ▶️ John if they have any way to get a game console or a PC.
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Antitrust and Apple
⏹️ ▶️ Casey So John, is it finally time to talk about antitrust in Apple?
⏹️ ▶️ John Almost one thing I just want to clarify because I think I figured out Tim Sweeney’s tweet. Is this still a follow up? No,
⏹️ ▶️ John that’s a topic, but this is the finishing up the follow up. Tim Sweeney’s tweet that I didn’t understand. All right. So this is more
⏹️ ▶️ John about Epic Games versus Epic International and Unreal versus Fortnite. Right. So Tim Sweeney is saying that
⏹️ ▶️ John Apple said they’ll revoke all of Apple’s SDK access for stuff on Friday, blah, blah, blah. The temporary
⏹️ ▶️ John restraining order does not stop Apple from doing that to the account that owns Fortnite,
⏹️ ▶️ John but there’s a different developer account for Epic International that has the Unreal Engine stuff, and that’s
⏹️ ▶️ John the one that Judge said that Apple can’t ditch. So Apple can, and apparently is still going to,
⏹️ ▶️ John terminate the developer account that is used to build and
⏹️ ▶️ John deploy Fortnite, right? Still doesn’t explain why they didn’t release one last version for Mac users
⏹️ ▶️ John right now, it’s not Friday yet and you could put out the build right and then the Mac users could have it and I suppose
⏹️ ▶️ John you know They can’t do it for iOS because iOS is off the App Store, but there is no that you know again for tonight It’s not on the App Store for the Mac But
⏹️ ▶️ John anyway, that’s what Tim Sweeney is saying He’s saying up there gonna kill access on Friday and that is true and the judge
⏹️ ▶️ John is not stopping them from it Anyway, I that that’s all that works. So
⏹️ ▶️ John I feel better that I understand the complaints now I still don’t understand why the Mac version isn’t out, but it’s kind of
⏹️ ▶️ John a foot stomping like well If you’re gonna kill my account I’m not going to rush for the last two days to try to get the Mac version out,
⏹️ ▶️ John because what if there’s a bug or something? And then we’ll no longer have a developer account for it to fix the bug, and it’ll be bad.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey antitrust. Antitrust and Apple.
⏹️ ▶️ John Marco has certainly talked a lot about this, and I think Casey, you’ve weighed in on it a little bit, but I’ve been avoiding
⏹️ ▶️ John the antitrust angle, as in like the legal government and just the general idea of
⏹️ ▶️ John the referees coming in and saying, what you’re doing is bad and we need to change
⏹️ ▶️ John the rules of the game so that you’re not what you’re doing is not damaging to the overall game and everyone
⏹️ ▶️ John who plays it, right? Our economy. Um, and my,
⏹️ ▶️ John my opinion on antitrust is mostly shaped by my sort of formative experience of antitrust,
⏹️ ▶️ John which is the Microsoft antitrust trial, which was a very big deal in my life. I was very big into the Mac
⏹️ ▶️ John and PC wars when I was a kid and was very anti Microsoft. Uh, And
⏹️ ▶️ John all the media and explainer articles and stories surrounding
⏹️ ▶️ John the antitrust, the Microsoft antitrust trial, really sort of let me,
⏹️ ▶️ John gave me a surface on which I could bounce all of my thoughts and opinions and antitrust off of.
⏹️ ▶️ John Now, I’m not a lawyer. I don’t know what the legal situation for antitrust is. And I didn’t know
⏹️ ▶️ John all the nitty gritty legal deals of the Microsoft one. I’m sure I won’t know the nitty gritty details of whatever may or may not happen
⏹️ ▶️ John related to tech and antitrust in the coming years, because there are rumblings in Congress about that,
⏹️ ▶️ John and there were those hearings and all that. So I don’t know. But my personal
⏹️ ▶️ John yardstick for antitrust and when it’s being damaging is based on something that was repeated a lot of the Microsoft
⏹️ ▶️ John trial and the Microsoft case, which was lots of things that you do as a company in our
⏹️ ▶️ John semi-capitalist economy, to try to get one up on your
⏹️ ▶️ John competitors are fine until you become so
⏹️ ▶️ John big that you are a quote unquote monopoly. And then suddenly all the things that you did to get
⏹️ ▶️ John there, a whole bunches of them become illegal. Because it’s fine to
⏹️ ▶️ John do this thing like, OK, well, if you buy a product X from us, you also have to buy a product Y. It’s
⏹️ ▶️ John fine to do that when you’re still little. Because if your customers don’t
⏹️ ▶️ John like it, they can say, you’re making me buy X when I just want to buy Y? I’m going to go to someone
⏹️ ▶️ John else. because they’re competitors and they can go to them, right? But eventually,
⏹️ ▶️ John if you become a monopoly, you tell them, oh, if you buy X from us, you also have to buy Y. And they
⏹️ ▶️ John can’t say, I don’t want that deal, I’ll go buy from someone else. You know, and you say, who else are you gonna
⏹️ ▶️ John buy from? We’re the only game out there, right? Now, obviously, in most cases, a monopoly is never
⏹️ ▶️ John literally the only game in town. But there was a particular moment I remember from the Microsoft Hated Trust trial, which had me
⏹️ ▶️ John going, yes, finally, because as a Mac fan at that time, It was so clear to me
⏹️ ▶️ John that Microsoft was a monopoly. Like that wasn’t even a question. I just wanted them to get to the part where they
⏹️ ▶️ John said, okay, given that you’re a monopoly, are you allowed to do X, Y, and Z? But they had to argue all this stuff about the monopoly. And at
⏹️ ▶️ John some point, one of the lawyers for the government side said to a giant courtroom, which was then filled with people in these
⏹️ ▶️ John pre-COVID times, it was, you know, the audience in the courtroom and everyone there, they said, or maybe it was in Congress, I forget where it was, but it was a
⏹️ ▶️ John big room full of people. And they said, raise your hand if you have a Windows PC. And everybody in the fricking room
⏹️ ▶️ John raised their hand. Like maybe there’s one person in the back who didn’t, but you know, maybe today in this world where
⏹️ ▶️ John Mac and PC doesn’t matter anything, if you didn’t live through it, you don’t realize how prevalent Windows
⏹️ ▶️ John PCs were. Nobody had Macs, people hadn’t even seen Macs. And when you’d say you had a Mac, they’d look at
⏹️ ▶️ John you weird, like what the hell? Why do you have, like Windows massively dominated. Windows
⏹️ ▶️ John PCs were the entire market and just a bunch of weirdos who wanted to overpay for a slower
⏹️ ▶️ John computer because it was pretty. Like this is all, you know, pre iMac, pre Mac OS X, before
⏹️ ▶️ John all of that. Windows massively dominated. And that demonstration, even though it is just anic data
⏹️ ▶️ John or whatever, was hammering home the points like, look, we all know that Microsoft is a monopoly.
⏹️ ▶️ John If you have some business and Microsoft forces you to take some deal or bundle something
⏹️ ▶️ John with something else or uses their power as a monopoly to crush a competitor, you can go, you know what? I don’t like that.
⏹️ ▶️ John I’m gonna switch to Mac. And they’d be like, what are you kidding me?
⏹️ ▶️ John Macs. Right? You can, and like, it’s ridiculous, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John And it was such an easy monopoly because Windows PCs were physical things that you could see. You could just walk into any building in any
⏹️ ▶️ John city in the world and just go to every single personal computer and say, is this a Windows computer? Yes or
⏹️ ▶️ John no, and just count them up. And sure enough, you’d find like 90 something percent of them would be Windows PCs. It was so easy to do.
⏹️ ▶️ John There wasn’t any sort of nuance to it at all. And so that always informs my
⏹️ ▶️ John opinion of antitrust. It’s like, it’s fine to do all sorts of hard-nosed
⏹️ ▶️ John deals. And the way you can tell you’re a monopoly is you can make the deal awful and people still have to take
⏹️ ▶️ John it. Like that’s when the referees need to come in because it’s anti-competitive, right? Competition means you
⏹️ ▶️ John can, you know, demand a thing of your customers or raise your prices. That’s the easy one, because people
⏹️ ▶️ John always say, oh, is the price raised? But there’s so many other things that you can do. You can crush competitors by saying,
⏹️ ▶️ John if you, my customer, do any business with that other company I won’t sell you Windows anymore. And if I don’t
⏹️ ▶️ John sell you Windows anymore, your business is dead because you have to have Windows because what the hell else are you gonna do? That’s how you can tell when you’re a monopoly,
⏹️ ▶️ John right? And after the anti-trust trial, both before and after, on
⏹️ ▶️ John the internet and using it back in those days or whatever, people would have all these opinions that didn’t make any
⏹️ ▶️ John sense to me. Even back then when the Mac was like 3% market share or something, people would
⏹️ ▶️ John say, well, Apple has a monopoly on Macs. And I’d be like, I don’t think you
⏹️ ▶️ John understand what monopoly means. Does Honda have a monopoly on Honda cars? I mean,
⏹️ ▶️ John that’s not, I mean, yeah, they’re the only company that sells Honda cars. They have 100% markets there of selling Honda
⏹️ ▶️ John cars, but that’s not how it works, right? And so
⏹️ ▶️ John everybody has a monopoly on the thing that only they do, right? So you need some other kind of yardstick. And back then, it
⏹️ ▶️ John was, like I said, it was so easy. It was market share, as in just count up all the
⏹️ ▶️ John PCs and see which, all the personal computers, and see which ones are Macs and which ones are PCs, how many sold per year, how many
⏹️ ▶️ John install base, whatever, pick a number. It was really easy to do. And a lot of the sort
⏹️ ▶️ John of App Store, Apple, walled garden, Apple’s being unfair. Apple is a monopoly two thing that
⏹️ ▶️ John never stopped from the days when everyone just was complaining about Apple even when they were 3% market
⏹️ ▶️ John share and just got louder and louder. I’ve always said, well, look, Apple,
⏹️ ▶️ John yeah, has a monopoly on applications on its own platforms, right? But Apple doesn’t even sell
⏹️ ▶️ John the majority of mobile phones, for example. Like not only do they not have 97% market share, they don’t even
⏹️ ▶️ John have 50. the biggest platform for
⏹️ ▶️ John mobile phones is Android. And Apple doesn’t have anything to do with that, right? So if your measure of
⏹️ ▶️ John whether Apple is a monopoly is not simply, oh, well, Apple has a monopoly on Apple products, which is dumb.
⏹️ ▶️ John If you look at the model that we use for the Microsoft antitrust trial, which is like
⏹️ ▶️ John market share, essentially, how many phones are out in the world and how many of those phones are iPhones, you’ll see
⏹️ ▶️ John that they don’t have a monopoly. So if Apple does something that users don’t like,
⏹️ ▶️ John Like, for example, charging 700% commission on everything in the App Store, that would decimate their third
⏹️ ▶️ John party application support, because everybody would leave, right? Except for Facebook. They said, no more
⏹️ ▶️ John free apps, and we get 700%. So if you sell it for $1, we get $7. Or some, they made a terrible deal, right? Everyone would just
⏹️ ▶️ John leave. I would argue the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco current deal is not that great, but go ahead.
⏹️ ▶️ John I’m saying, the test of monopoly power is how badly can you screw
⏹️ ▶️ John everybody involved, and they have no choice. And from a market share perspective,
⏹️ ▶️ John if Apple does things that developers and or customers don’t like enough, people can switch. And
⏹️ ▶️ John Apple, by the way, will absolutely argue this in the current antitrust trials or whatever comes. They will say, people can
⏹️ ▶️ John and do switch from iOS to Android. It happens all the time. It’s a thing that you can
⏹️ ▶️ John do. So that, you know, showing that there is competition. So if we, Apple, do something that’s actually really bad,
⏹️ ▶️ John there is someplace else for them to go. Unlike Microsoft, where it was just not viable
⏹️ ▶️ John for you to switch to the Mac, like especially back in the heyday
⏹️ ▶️ John of the Wintel PC, because like almost all the applications you cared about weren’t even on the
⏹️ ▶️ John Mac. If you’re using this point of sale software or custom software you have running for your thing or tons of
⏹️ ▶️ John other applications that were only available on Windows or DOS or whatever, you know, like, but on mobile phones, it’s
⏹️ ▶️ John not the same way. There’s much more parity, right? So from a market share perspective,
⏹️ ▶️ John Apple certainly does not have a monopoly, you know, using the sort of measuring
⏹️ ▶️ John yardstick that was used in the Microsoft antitrust trial. And for a longest time, you know, before all this, you know, for years and years
⏹️ ▶️ John of the App Store, as we were creeping up to this, this was generally the reason why I ignored any kind of,
⏹️ ▶️ John Apple needs to be investigated for antitrust things. It’s like, they’re not in a Microsoft position. They can’t
⏹️ ▶️ John turn the screws on everybody and get away with it, because not only is
⏹️ ▶️ John there a viable alternative, there’s a more popular alternative, right? And that ratio, that market
⏹️ ▶️ John share, like Apple wasn’t creeping up to eventually dominate that 90% market share. They’ve been holding steady
⏹️ ▶️ John or declining compared to Android. Like it hasn’t, I don’t think there’s ever been a point where the majority
⏹️ ▶️ John of mobile phones and use mobile smartphones and use in the world were Apple platform.
⏹️ ▶️ John Right. The thing that’s changed for me in recent years is not Apple’s behavior,
⏹️ ▶️ John because in many respects, Apple doing things that are, you know, that make users
⏹️ ▶️ John and or developers angry and then us having reactions to them. Obviously it’s coming to a head now, but
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s always been sort of simmering in the background. But that hasn’t changed the general equation for me of
⏹️ ▶️ John like, okay, well, but then, you know, if, if users don’t like it and if, if fortnight and Facebook and Netflix
⏹️ ▶️ John all leave the platform, everyone will just switch to Android, right? So that shows Apple’s non monopoly. The thing that’s been bothering me a little
⏹️ ▶️ John bit lately is a different yardstick other than just installed base of phones and
⏹️ ▶️ John ability to switch. And that yardstick is a different statistic, which is not installed base but
⏹️ ▶️ John share of like money flowing through the mobile phone economy. And
⏹️ ▶️ John when you’re selling a physical good like a Windows PC that comes with like a Windows license that you pay Microsoft
⏹️ ▶️ John for, it’s really easy to say you sell one PC, you have to sell one Windows license for it. And you know, you figure out
⏹️ ▶️ John how much that PC maker pays per license like it’s a very straightforward thing. But just selling
⏹️ ▶️ John a bunch of phones into the world does not directly translate to revenue that passes
⏹️ ▶️ John through those phones. So even though there are way, way more Android phones in the world, my understanding
⏹️ ▶️ John is that the majority, in fact, the vast majority of revenue that
⏹️ ▶️ John are profit revenue or profit, I don’t know if it’s both, but anyway, the vast majority of the money
⏹️ ▶️ John that we care about that flows through the mobile economy actually does go through Apple phones. Is it because people buy Apple
⏹️ ▶️ John phones have more money because the phones are more expensive in general and therefore they have more money to spend? Is
⏹️ ▶️ John it because iPhone users are more likely to spend money of any amount than Android users.
⏹️ ▶️ John But either way, that is a very different statistic than how many phones exist in the world.
⏹️ ▶️ John And that would mean that Apple may, I mean, we’re kind of in the process of finding out, may actually have monopoly
⏹️ ▶️ John level power when it comes to forcing companies to do what it wants, because they
⏹️ ▶️ John are the gatekeeper to whatever the percentage is 80% 90% of
⏹️ ▶️ John the money flowing through the mobile economy. Right. And it would be interesting
⏹️ ▶️ John to see if anyone makes that argument. Maybe when the government case comes, probably not going to come from this epic one. But
⏹️ ▶️ John all I’m saying is there’s more, there’s more to monopoly than just market share. And what really matters
⏹️ ▶️ John in monopoly is what kind of power you have. Now, I don’t think that Apple currently actually has
⏹️ ▶️ John the power that Microsoft had to basically get its way because these companies
⏹️ ▶️ John need Apple, because they need that 80 or 90% of revenue, just because I think it’s a little
⏹️ ▶️ John bit more fragmented than that. And I also think the revenue would go with these companies if they abandoned
⏹️ ▶️ John Apple. So if Facebook, Netflix, Amazon, Epic, all
⏹️ ▶️ John left Apple’s platform and went to Android, I think the money would follow them because the people who currently have
⏹️ ▶️ John iPhones and have been spending all that money would switch platforms. But right now,
⏹️ ▶️ John Apple’s, I don’t know what you wanna call it, money share is way out of proportion with their market share.
⏹️ ▶️ John And that’s the thing I’m keeping my eye on Because you can imagine if Apple’s money share
⏹️ ▶️ John got to be 99% or 100% and Android was just that phone that people
⏹️ ▶️ John get who never spent any money through their phone, Apple would have a lot more power than it does now. I think part
⏹️ ▶️ John of the battle that we’re seeing here is a test case to see exactly how much power Apple
⏹️ ▶️ John has. And thus far, Epic, I think, has shown that Apple has less power than Apple thinks it has.
⏹️ ▶️ John Because Epic is willing to defy Apple, and Epic’s not even that big in the grand scheme of things, right? They
⏹️ ▶️ John how much does granted epic has less to lose, but they are a small fish compared
⏹️ ▶️ John to the biggest company in the world. And they’re willing to go head to head. They’re willing to take the head. They’re willing to battle
⏹️ ▶️ John Apple on this front. And it’s a couple items that got pushed out of fall because it was too long. I’m talking about other companies
⏹️ ▶️ John doing similar things. I think people smell blood in the water when it comes to Apple. And I think that shows
⏹️ ▶️ John that Apple does not yet have monopoly level power. And what,
⏹️ ▶️ John and that’s why most of my other discussion of this topic has been Apple. you’re doing stupid things.
⏹️ ▶️ John Corporate relationship management is bad. What you’re doing is not going to work, right? I’m telling
⏹️ ▶️ John Apple as a customer that likes their products that you’re making bad decisions. But at no point did I say, Apple, what you’re doing
⏹️ ▶️ John is illegal. Or Apple, what you’re doing is immoral. It’s just stupid business, right? You’re
⏹️ ▶️ John making people like Marco super mad at you. That’s bad business. It’s their right to do things that are bad
⏹️ ▶️ John for their business. But I, you know, I’m gonna say that I don’t currently think
⏹️ ▶️ John that anything Apple is doing, specifically Apple, requires antitrust
⏹️ ▶️ John intervention based on their current power in the market. But I will say that
⏹️ ▶️ John writ large, there needs to be new regulation in the tech sector to control the actions of
⏹️ ▶️ John all companies. Because when you go look at Google, it’s like, oh, well, Google, you know, that’s the place where you can change, right? Google
⏹️ ▶️ John does all the same stuff, mostly most of the same stuff. And it’s not because there’s collusion or anything.
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s just because there are too few players. And those players have found things they can do that make them
⏹️ ▶️ John tons and tons of money and give them tons of power. And even though they are themselves are deadly competitors, you know, all the,
⏹️ ▶️ John all the big tech companies are themselves deadly competitors with each other. There’s just not that many of them. And that
⏹️ ▶️ John is too much power concentrated in too small an area. And that’s why we need new regulation to protect customers,
⏹️ ▶️ John to protect, not to protect developers specifically, but to protect customers and their data and their rights
⏹️ ▶️ John and everything having to do with that. So I think absolutely there needs to be new and better legislation, which we’re really hard
⏹️ ▶️ John for our broken system of government to produce it any time soon. But anyway,
⏹️ ▶️ John there needs to be that, but I don’t think Apple itself, I could be convinced otherwise,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, I’ll see your evidence in court eventually, if this ever comes to court, right? But I don’t think Apple
⏹️ ▶️ John specifically, anything that it’s doing, demands legal intervention. I just think they’re
What would you change?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey So what would you if you were allowed to make changes to the App Store rules,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey what would you do?
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s not a question of like App Store rules. I think they just need to be it’s so hard to do
⏹️ ▶️ John because there’s so many different ways you can go with this but like The example I’d always
⏹️ ▶️ John use is like everyone always wants to use consumer harm and they they want they’re so focused on prices like well The the
⏹️ ▶️ John prices in the App Store are low like that the downward price pressure that we always complained about from the software developers That’s good
⏹️ ▶️ John for consumers, right? Downward price pressure, that’s good. Like the same kind of argument I make for Walmart. Hey, Walmart’s able to sell goods
⏹️ ▶️ John really cheaply. Isn’t that great? But the power that Walmart wields over its suppliers, and the power that Apple wields over
⏹️ ▶️ John its suppliers, and the power that Apple wields over its developers, even though it results in low prices for consumers, is not good for the
⏹️ ▶️ John ecosystem of our general economy. So I would mostly be trying to target
⏹️ ▶️ John rules that require some kind of,
⏹️ ▶️ John require the big companies to certain certain
⏹️ ▶️ John rights of consumers need to be preserved. Like you can’t do a thing that prevents like
⏹️ ▶️ John here’s an example. I don’t necessarily agree with this one, but it’s an easy one to pull out. You can’t do a thing that stops people
⏹️ ▶️ John from being able to install whatever software they want on their phones, right? So side
⏹️ ▶️ John loading, for example, again, we talked about this before. I don’t necessarily agree with it, but it’s an easy thing to say customers. It’s their phone. They bought
⏹️ ▶️ John it. You as a company shouldn’t be able to stop them from installing stuff on it by avoiding their warranty
⏹️ ▶️ John or whatever like you know like DMCA and everything makes that difficult because of the
⏹️ ▶️ John whole anti hacking crap or whatever. But anyway,
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco that’s an example
⏹️ ▶️ John and that would be a protection of consumers because that would provide some pressure for Apple to make the app store better, something
⏹️ ▶️ John they would never do on their own because they don’t want to enable side loading but whether there was law that it forced them to. That’s a bad example
⏹️ ▶️ John because I don’t agree with it. But that that is an example of sort of a thing that would apply to everybody and that it would
⏹️ ▶️ John force more competition and it would force more innovation, right? Because lots of things that aren’t allowed on the App Store
⏹️ ▶️ John will never know what could have been created and what somebody bailed on because they thought it was an awesome idea, but they said, oh, that’ll never get
⏹️ ▶️ John past App Review, so they didn’t do it, right? And maybe they thought, well, it’ll never get past App Review, but you can do it on Android then and
⏹️ ▶️ John have everybody sideload it, and they said, yeah, but you know, it’s a thing that makes money and most people who have money are
⏹️ ▶️ John on iOS. Like, you’ll never know the innovation you’re losing by having these closed platforms. So things like that, or right to repair
⏹️ ▶️ John is another example. Like, you should be able to bring your iPhone to someone else and have them repair
⏹️ ▶️ John it, right? And Apple would complain,
⏹️ ▶️ John a safety concern, and only Apple can do it, or whatever. And some of that is true, but a lot of it is just a way
⏹️ ▶️ John for them to preserve the money for themselves, and that’s anti-consumer. So we have these consumer laws in various
⏹️ ▶️ John states that say if you make a hardware product, you can’t actually stop people. And this applies to Tesla
⏹️ ▶️ John cars and everything else. And you can’t actually stop people from taking it to someone else and paying them money to fix it, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John Laws like that, that are not, oh, you should have this rule in the App Store, but that are instead, here’s
⏹️ ▶️ John a class of things that we understand companies want to do, that makes them tons of money,
⏹️ ▶️ John but in the end, if everybody does it, it makes the world worse for all of us. Like, that’s
⏹️ ▶️ John the role of government. Find the things that, you know, they’re all the companies in some ways, or competing
⏹️ ▶️ John for our dollar and doing all these things, but eventually companies get enough power to start do things
⏹️ ▶️ John that benefit the company, but don’t benefit literally anybody else. And that’s when you need, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ John laws to regulate the game to make it. So, you know, I know you can do that move and I know it makes
⏹️ ▶️ John everything for you better and I know no one can stop you, but the fact that no one can stop you means we’re going
⏹️ ▶️ John to make a law that says you can’t do that. Right. So I don’t have any specific recommendations, but
⏹️ ▶️ John that’s the type of thing I’m thinking of.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah. I don’t know, to answer my own question. I don’t know. I don’t know what I would recommend.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I feel like this distinction,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey this seemingly arbitrary distinction that Apple has come up with where you
⏹️ ▶️ Casey can sell something in the quote unquote real world and you can
⏹️ ▶️ Casey do that in a very user hostile way without Apple taking a cut
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and that’s all right. Like you can sell stuff on Amazon, you can book an Airbnb rental, you can
⏹️ ▶️ Casey take an Uber or Lyft and Apple doesn’t necessarily need a cut of that. You can schedule an
⏹️ ▶️ Casey in-person and pay for an in-person gym class, but it’s in person,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey so it’s okay. But suddenly if it’s virtual or fake,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey if you will, I don’t literally believe that being open for the sake of discussion, fake or, or electronic or what
⏹️ ▶️ Casey have you, suddenly Apple deserves the money according to Apple. And that distinction,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey while it may have made sense early on, I don’t particularly understand it now.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And I finally had the time earlier tonight to read Ben Thompson’s last
⏹️ ▶️ Casey couple of posts about this. I think they might have been members-only posts if they weren’t. I’ll link them in
⏹️ ▶️ Casey show notes. But- The big one wasn’t. Okay, thank you. But one of
⏹️ ▶️ Casey his points was, and I’m going to butcher it because I’m not not as smart as Ben, but basically
⏹️ ▶️ Casey if the marginal cost for selling the thing is effectively zero, you don’t have to
⏹️ ▶️ Casey physically create another one, then okay, Apple gets 30%. But
⏹️ ▶️ Casey if there’s a non-zero marginal cost, you actually have to have room in a building to teach
⏹️ ▶️ Casey this exercise class. You are actually staying at somebody’s Airbnb. You are actually
⏹️ ▶️ Casey buying something tangible from Amazon. And maybe there should
⏹️ ▶️ Casey be some other tier where an Apple gets a cut, but maybe it’s not 30%.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And maybe those companies should be allowed to offer their own payment systems
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and so on. And I feel like I understand the spirit of what Ben was going for, but I think it gets
⏹️ ▶️ Casey really complicated really quickly. And I think that in order for
⏹️ ▶️ Casey it to be fair for everyone, for users, for developers, for Apple, whatever the system is,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey should have a really, really simple elevator pitch. And to be fair,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey the elevator pitch or the summary of today’s system is, everyone pays 30%. Asterisk, asterisk,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey double dagger. Yeah, yeah, exactly.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey But I think you take the spirit of what I mean, though. And I don’t know what that simple answer is. I just
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I mean, I don’t think it’s possible to draw that kind of distinction in a reliable,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco enforceable way. Like, this is why, like, I’m actually, I’m actually
⏹️ ▶️ Marco being a little bit more ambitious with what I hope to happen now. Not that it will. There’s,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think, almost no chance of this ever happening, even with regulation. But
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think, you know, one of the big challenges Apple has always had with App Store rules is that many
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of the rules are fairly straightforward, objective rules of like,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know, the app can’t crash during app review, that’s bad. You know, it has to do what it says it does,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco et cetera. You know, it can’t be malware. It has to, you know, adhere to certain, you know, restrictions on
⏹️ ▶️ Marco how it uses certain hardware features. And, you know, like there’s so many parts of the rules
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that are sensible, defensible, and objective, and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco therefore should be fairly easy to enforce consistently and fairly and in a way that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco everyone can predict before they go and develop an app or submit it. So it’s fairly
⏹️ ▶️ Marco easy to avoid stepping on the straightforward, obvious parts of the rules. And most of the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco App Store review rules, and I would even say most of the value
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of them to customers, falls into that category. We’re only really talking about a
⏹️ ▶️ Marco relatively small handful of very vague, very controversial,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco unpredictable, and inconsistently enforced rules. And I think it would be
⏹️ ▶️ Marco better for everybody, including Apple eventually long-term, but
⏹️ ▶️ Marco better for everybody, certainly better for developers, and I think even better for users and for the whole ecosystem,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco if the only rules that were enforced were
⏹️ ▶️ Marco objective, easily defensible rules. And so So that’s why I don’t think you can really
⏹️ ▶️ Marco make a lot of strong cases for any of these rules that have
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to do with whether Apple can demand 30% of your money
⏹️ ▶️ Marco based on how and why and for what your app is
⏹️ ▶️ Marco processing payments. So what I would actually hope to see long-term,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and again, I know this is really optimistic, I don’t think it’ll ever actually happen. But
⏹️ ▶️ Marco what I would hope to see long term is for Apple, and I know this sounds crazy, give me a moment, I
⏹️ ▶️ Marco will explain, to just drop the requirement and let people do
⏹️ ▶️ Marco in their apps whatever the heck they want to do with payments and credit cards and money and anything
⏹️ ▶️ Marco else. You know, this sounds crazy, I know, oh my god, what if there’s all these scams
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and people take their credit cards and everything? Well you can do all that in Safari
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and the world has functioned
⏹️ ▶️ Marco know yes there are some scams there are also lots of scams in app in apples in that purchase
⏹️ ▶️ Marco systems that use subscription billing and misleading things like yeah there’s there’s a lot of scams in the App Store too
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and again the world has gone has function and gone on with it like credit cards are
⏹️ ▶️ Marco pretty productive about fraud and people blow money on stupid stuff all the time through legitimate and illegitimate
⏹️ ▶️ Marco means with credit cards and with games and everything like so I don’t think there would be a meaningful
⏹️ ▶️ Marco consumer harm and you can look at the web again bringing this as
⏹️ ▶️ Marco another example because it’s a huge one you can look at the web and you can say okay well the web
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you can buy things with your credit card on sites however
⏹️ ▶️ Marco there is recently you know relatively recently been this additional option that Apple offered called
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Apple pay on the web. And Apple Pay on the web is awesome for me
⏹️ ▶️ Marco as a consumer. Whenever I see a way to buy something with Apple Pay on the web, I always
⏹️ ▶️ Marco choose that option. And I’ve even occasionally not bought something because it was
⏹️ ▶️ Marco too hard to do, especially if I’m on my phone, I don’t want to type in all my billing info, whereas I probably
⏹️ ▶️ Marco would have bought it more easily if there was an Apple Pay button. And so there’s actually a big incentive for people with
⏹️ ▶️ Marco web checkout or purchase things to add Apple Pay support. And Apple does
⏹️ ▶️ Marco get some kind of, I think, very small percentage of those sales. I think it’s on the order of like 0.1% or something.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Like they get some kind of small commission as part of the credit card merchant fee, but you know, they don’t get a lot of that. But
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know, Apple’s paid for that. And you know, there is huge benefit to me as a customer
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of using Apple Pay. There is pressure therefore on the website to integrate it. And it has this wonderful
⏹️ ▶️ Marco user experience. I don’t see anything wrong with a long-term
⏹️ ▶️ Marco vision in which apps can do whatever they want with payments in their app. If they’re scams,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco AppReview can still take care of that. I’m not pushing for side-loading, still. Again,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco even in my crazy new world here, this thing’s never gonna happen, I’m not pushing for side-loading or alternative app stores,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco because that’s a whole can of worms. I don’t think we need to go there necessarily.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So AppReview can still function as a way to filter out
⏹️ ▶️ Marco scams and bad actors and things that are breaking more objective, easily defensible
⏹️ ▶️ Marco rules. But it’s just too messy in the real world
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to try to govern in a way what they ostensibly do with these rules,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to try to enforce rules that are consistently and predictably and across
⏹️ ▶️ Marco all apps. They just can’t do it. For instance, I recently learned
⏹️ ▶️ Marco from Tiff actually, who bought an Instagram ad, that Instagram ads are
⏹️ ▶️ Marco purchasable directly in the app. I have no idea how, like,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco wow, this is okay.
⏹️ ▶️ John Instagram is owned by Facebook, I’m not sure you know that. Yeah, right.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Instagram. Facebook is bigger than Epic. Facebook ads, I have no idea if this is true or not, but I would
⏹️ ▶️ Marco bet you can probably buy Facebook ads in their app too, because you can buy them in Instagram. And like,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco why has an Apple demanded 30% of all of Instagram’s
⏹️ ▶️ Marco ad revenue on iOS? Oh, because they can’t. Because,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco yes, John, they’re too big. Like, Apple couldn’t anger them that much.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I have no idea why it’s okay for Instagram to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco sell ads in their app, and yet it’s not okay for a lot of these other things that Apple has
⏹️ ▶️ Marco rejected. And this kind of inconsistency is never gonna go away.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco You know, you look at the WordPress rejection from last week, and it’s like, and even that’s like,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s a weird, vague, blurry line of like whether this should have been allowed or not, and it’s all
⏹️ ▶️ Marco these complexities about how do you define a purchase, and what is WordPress versus the app
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and the service. Like, there’s all these blurry lines, because that’s the real world. In the real world, we have
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a few, you know, we have some simple cases where the rules are clear-cut and make sense. Then we also have a whole bunch of really
⏹️ ▶️ Marco complicated things where it’s kind of vague as to whether it should be allowed or not. They’re never going to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco win that fight. They’re never going to find a way to consistently enforce this rule without
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the problems they have now of just angering everybody, constantly getting in disputes,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco having unpredictable, inconsistent enforcement of everything. And that has always gotten them in trouble with the App Store,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco always, since day one. And their recent incredible increase
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of aggression in this particular area, which seems to me like a desperate way to drive up service revenue
⏹️ ▶️ Marco when everything else is constant, but hey, that’s just me. Their incredible aggression
⏹️ ▶️ Marco in this particular area to squeeze out another few percent of profit margin for this quarter or whatever,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I don’t think it’s worth it. Like I think they’re doing so much more damage. long
⏹️ ▶️ Marco term I would be totally pleased and happy if they would just
⏹️ ▶️ Marco have a consistent, easily enforceable rule of do what you
⏹️ ▶️ Marco want in your app and you can use our payment system if you want.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And then Apple, again as I mentioned a few episodes ago, would be forced to compete because their payment system has a
⏹️ ▶️ Marco lot of big advantages. Like for the same reason why I love using Apple Pay on the web,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I also love buying subscriptions to things with Apple’s system instead of someone
⏹️ ▶️ Marco else’s system because it is easier, it is faster, and I know that when I
⏹️ ▶️ Marco want to cancel it, I’m not going to have to call anybody or do any weird jumping through hoops. I can just cancel
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it and that’s it. And so there is still that consumer pressure
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that app developers will still have huge incentives to use Apple’s
⏹️ ▶️ Marco system because their customers will demand it and they’ll get higher conversion as a result. That’s why I would still
⏹️ ▶️ Marco use it for Overcast. That’s why I would still use it as a customer, as a user of all these other apps, and I would
⏹️ ▶️ Marco subscribe more readily to something that offered Apple system than something that doesn’t. That alone would be
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a reason why most apps probably would still choose to use Apple system. And that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco would be totally defensible on Apple’s part. They could still charge their same rates on that because they
⏹️ ▶️ Marco are providing legitimate value and they’re convincing you to use it not because of a giant
⏹️ ▶️ Marco stick that they wield, on its merit and that they would like imagine how nice that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco would be to choose to use Apple’s in that purchase system because
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of the merits it brings you rather than to have to be forced to use it and have all this crap going on
⏹️ ▶️ Marco with all these rules that you have to tiptoe around otherwise Apple will demand 30% of your entire business that has nothing
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to do with them and and I frankly like Apple’s counter arguments
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to this hold so little water their counter arguments Like the consumer
⏹️ ▶️ Marco harm side is mostly not there. Like if they would allow other
⏹️ ▶️ Marco payments, it’s mostly not there. And I think the market would sort that out just like it has on the web.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And any argument that goes towards like paying Apple to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco fund the App Store is a thousand percent BS because
⏹️ ▶️ Marco whatever revenue the App Store brings in from Apple squeezing this 30% out of developers
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that makes up like a few percent of their quarterly revenue pales in comparison
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to the value of the app ecosystem to the iPhone, which is way,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco way more of the company’s revenue. Because the iPhone wouldn’t sell at
⏹️ ▶️ Marco all if it weren’t for all these third-party apps. How many people do you know who would buy an
⏹️ ▶️ Marco iPhone if it couldn’t run any third-party apps? I bet it’s not a very big number.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I know, yes, the original one, blah, blah, blah, that was a long time ago. These days, the value of
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a phone is the apps it runs. And in particular, a handful of very big company
⏹️ ▶️ Marco apps that everybody wants to run. And a phone that can’t run those apps is not gonna
⏹️ ▶️ Marco sell. And Apple, without the iPhone, is
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a shareholder lawsuit, that’s for sure, a new CEO, like that’s, everyone gets fired if the iPhone is not selling.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So, you know, that’s way more important. and the value of the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco apps is such a massive part of all of Apple’s
⏹️ ▶️ Marco hardware platforms that they make way more money from than this stupid services category
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that keeps having them screw their customers over. They’re framing it as like, oh, you have to pay your
⏹️ ▶️ Marco way and that’s how we justify this, but that’s not the reality. That’s not why
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the App Store is here. You know what’s also really important to Apple? Like the bathrooms on their
⏹️ ▶️ Marco campus. How much money do the bathrooms bring in?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco You can see like it’s a ridiculous argument to start separating things out when like, okay, there’s a lot of value to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that in other ways. They’re pretty important. You just gotta, you know, sometimes you gotta just fund something because it’s important to the rest of your business that makes
⏹️ ▶️ Marco money. The App Store, they’re double dipping. They have found a way to make significant
⏹️ ▶️ Marco money by squeezing all of us from something that they would be running anyway,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco because it has massive value to their hardware platform that makes them way, way, way more money.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Apple would be in great shape and would have huge motivation to run the App Store for free.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco They don’t deserve any percentage of our money for running the App Store.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco We are in a symbiotic relationship here. You know, we have software
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that we sell or make money from, and Apple has a platform full of users. By
⏹️ ▶️ Marco us having our software on their platform, everyone benefits, the users, Apple’s platform,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and therefore Apple, and us by making the apps. Like we all benefit from that. That’s why they do
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it. And so Apple doesn’t need any percentage. All they need to do is cover their credit
⏹️ ▶️ Marco card fees and they can do that with 5% or less. They don’t need all this from us. They’re
⏹️ ▶️ Marco taking it because they
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And again, it’s a bad look for so many reasons. And the really truly
⏹️ ▶️ Marco sad part about all this is that this is like a drop in the bucket to them still.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Like they’re destroying their reputation. And by the way, like,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Sean, you know, being an Apple fan for so long, we’ve had to fight a long
⏹️ ▶️ Marco time to try to convince the world that Apple is not just greedy jerks about
⏹️ ▶️ Marco everything. And they are now showing the world that they totally
⏹️ ▶️ Marco are greedy jerks about everything. This kind of reputation takes so long to shake off.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I just, I wish they wouldn’t put themselves in the position. Like it’s, it really is,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s like your best friend is like in front of a crowd
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and starts to tell a racist joke and you’re like, oh no, oh God, no, no, no, no, stop, stop. Please don’t do
⏹️ ▶️ Marco this. Because you don’t want to see them look like a jerk. And then they just keep digging and digging and digging.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco You’re like, no, no, no, no, no, no, stop, stop. This is how it is being an Apple fan right now. They just keep
⏹️ ▶️ Marco digging and digging and digging and just looking horrible. And they
⏹️ ▶️ Marco don’t seem to know or care or even realize it because they seem to be living in an alternate world where their
⏹️ ▶️ Marco behavior is defensible. But anyway, so to answer your question, the rule I would change
⏹️ ▶️ Marco after all that, I think long-term,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco all these weird subjective distinctions they try to make
⏹️ ▶️ Marco about when they deserve their 30% and when they will permit
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you to not contribute to their app store are mostly BS and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco unenforceable. And it’s full of vague-edged cases. It always has been. It always
⏹️ ▶️ Marco will be. And there is no way out of that that can be consistently enforced and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco reasonable to everybody except giving up that revenue as a requirement and actually just
⏹️ ▶️ Marco earning it competitively.
⏹️ ▶️ John So what you described is actually pretty hard to turn into legislation. But during your, giving
⏹️ ▶️ John examples there, you came across two things that are not related to antitrust, but are examples of the kind of legislation
⏹️ ▶️ John that we should have but don’t. One example, and we have laws like this all over the place, but we don’t have this specific one. You complained about
⏹️ ▶️ John when I subscribe to something and then it’s like a pain in the butt to get unsubscribed, because you have to send a letter
⏹️ ▶️ John or call someone on the phone or whatever. A very simple, straightforward consumer protection law
⏹️ ▶️ John that companies would fight tooth and nail, but that I think we could actually get passed, even in this country, is
⏹️ ▶️ John companies must allow, for any subscription service, customers must allow unsubscription through the same venue
⏹️ ▶️ John that subscription happened. So if you subscribe by mail, companies must allow unsubscription by mail. If you subscribe by phone,
⏹️ ▶️ John companies must allow unsubscription by phone. You can offer all the alternatives, but the law is whatever
⏹️ ▶️ John venue the subscription takes place in, you must also be able to do the unsubscription. So if you subscribe on
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think that is a law in California already.
⏹️ ▶️ John Right, but this is an example of a very straightforward consumer protection law that industry hates because they don’t
⏹️ ▶️ John ever want to be told what to do, But consumers would be like, yeah, it seems fair. And so they get passed, right? Another
⏹️ ▶️ John example you gave of, you know, what we were talking about Instagram selling the ads or whatever, Facebook owns Instagram.
⏹️ ▶️ John For many, many years now, the part of our government that’s supposed to decide whether it’s okay
⏹️ ▶️ John for one company to allow another has been just saying, sure, whatever. Yeah, you can buy them.
⏹️ ▶️ John And we all know big, powerful companies like Facebook get bigger and more powerful by finding
⏹️ ▶️ John a competitor and giving them an offer they can’t refuse, which is a pile of money and buying them, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John And that’s bad for us all collectively, because the competitors never get to grow and flourish,
⏹️ ▶️ John because the big companies are so big, Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon, all of them are so
⏹️ ▶️ John big, that, and this was true of Microsoft, that if any company starts to get some kind
⏹️ ▶️ John of momentum, say in the social networking world, maybe with a photo sharing app, Facebook will come along
⏹️ ▶️ John and say, if we can’t exactly copy what you’re doing and do that, we’ll just buy you, because we have so much money,
⏹️ ▶️ John and it’s worth the money for us to just buy you, and then absorb you into our hole. And now we don’t have to worry about you as
⏹️ ▶️ John a competitor anymore. That’s exactly the type of thing that our government is supposed to examine and say, that doesn’t
⏹️ ▶️ John seem like a great idea to me. Buying television stations used to have all of these precedent of like,
⏹️ ▶️ John well, we don’t want you to own too many television stations or television and radio combined. All these rules that used to exist to try to not
⏹️ ▶️ John let anyone get too much control over the media. In recent history, it’s been a free for
⏹️ ▶️ John all to the detriment of everybody. So those are examples of non-antitrust laws that are relevant to the tech sector
⏹️ ▶️ John that could be passed, that could help all of us and help provide a more competitive market. And I think those
⏹️ ▶️ John kind of targeted things like targeted laws like that, that have nothing to do with antitrust, but
⏹️ ▶️ John just have to do with like regulating the marketplace. We need laws like that for
⏹️ ▶️ John this new marketplace, relatively new marketplace of apps and digital things. And I think we can come
⏹️ ▶️ John up with reasonable common sense laws in that realm. A few of those, they would, they would
⏹️ ▶️ John affect all stores, not just Apple. And those, those would go a long way towards helping settle this. Um, One
⏹️ ▶️ John of the things that Casey said before and you touched on as well about Apple deserving revenue for like, you know, or you
⏹️ ▶️ John buy a physical thing and Apple doesn’t get a cut of that. But if you buy a digital thing, suddenly Apple deserves it. It’s
⏹️ ▶️ John and I was thinking, I think about this a lot of like, you know, I don’t know. I don’t remember if this was in any of the court transcripts,
⏹️ ▶️ John but like, what must the reasoning have been inside Apple when deciding on the initial sort of decision of like,
⏹️ ▶️ John well, physical stuff that you can just enter a credit card and whatever. We won’t touch that. But for
⏹️ ▶️ John digital stuff, initially just the apps themselves, but eventually in-app purchases and
⏹️ ▶️ John subscriptions and all that, any digital stuff will get the 30% cut. How do they come up with that rule to begin with?
⏹️ ▶️ John Does it make any sense? It doesn’t make any sense from a deserved perspective at all, because the deserved
⏹️ ▶️ John perspective in Apple’s made these arguments themselves is like, well, it’s customer acquisition.
⏹️ ▶️ John We’re giving you access to our billions of users, and that’s how you’re getting new purchasers of your thing or new subscribers
⏹️ ▶️ John to your thing. But that is exactly true of the physical stores as well, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John We’re giving the people who sell physical stuff access to all these users too. But somehow we don’t deserve the acquisition
⏹️ ▶️ John of that customer, but we do deserve it when it’s a digital thing. It’s the same customers, right? It’s not
⏹️ ▶️ John like, you know, so deserve is not a factor at all. Not that that’s even a concept that really matters
⏹️ ▶️ John in anything because it’s all just about relationships and power dynamics, but forget about deserve. What
⏹️ ▶️ John I think, what I can imagine might be a reasonable rationale for this rule
⏹️ ▶️ John to begin with was when Apple comes on the scene with their new app store or whatever,
⏹️ ▶️ John non, you know, physical good businesses have established business models already. Whatever
⏹️ ▶️ John you’re selling, if it’s a physical thing, if you’re renting space, if you’re teaching a class, if you’re selling, you know, a car,
⏹️ ▶️ John like whatever, like physical goods, those business models are established. So Apple, I think, would have correctly
⏹️ ▶️ John recognized. We can’t parachute in and say we get all we get 30% of all car sales now.
⏹️ ▶️ John Like, there’s no room for you, Apple, in the car, sale, business model value
⏹️ ▶️ John chain for you to take pretty much any percentage, but certainly not 30%, right? And repeat for
⏹️ ▶️ John any kind of physical good. It just, there’s no way they could insert themselves into that. That would have been too much of
⏹️ ▶️ John a barrier to the growth of their business. They say, fine, physical goods, existing business plans. But for digital
⏹️ ▶️ John stuff, a lot of which Apple quote unquote invented, not really, but like developed
⏹️ ▶️ John themselves, they developed a subscription system for their app store. They developed just the purchasing of apps. They
⏹️ ▶️ John developed in-app purchase, like all these things that they developed. That’s
⏹️ ▶️ John not an existing business model and relationship because again, the parties are the consumer, the developer, and Apple,
⏹️ ▶️ John and they’re making this thing together. And so there is no existing business model with
⏹️ ▶️ John no room for Apple to take a cut. So that’s, they said, okay, well, digital, we’re gonna take our cut.
⏹️ ▶️ John And you can even think of them saying, okay, well, physical goods are gonna be physical goods, but the future of our business is digital goods.
⏹️ ▶️ John And more and more games are becoming, more and more games, more and more things are becoming digital, like for example, games, which when they were
⏹️ ▶️ John rolling this out, were still mostly sold on plastic discs, and today are mostly sold digital, or I imagine
⏹️ ▶️ John they’re mostly sold digital, but anyway, the trend is clear. Digital is the future, so if we’re going to put our stake in the ground,
⏹️ ▶️ John we’ll say physical goods, you have your business models, we can’t insert ourselves in digital, we’ll try
⏹️ ▶️ John to take a cut of everything. Doesn’t make any sense from a Apple deserves perspective, doesn’t make any sense from a,
⏹️ ▶️ John yeah, but why, what is different about this? Even from a marginal cost perspective, like
⏹️ ▶️ John the things that Ben was saying about, you could come up with percentages based on whether the thing has marginal
⏹️ ▶️ John cost. That makes sense from a corporate relationship management perspective, because that’s an example
⏹️ ▶️ John of a compromise that you could come to that has rationale to say, we understand that you have to pay
⏹️ ▶️ John some incremental costs for every one of these things. Therefore, our percentage has to be less. Like that’s the way Apple can work that
⏹️ ▶️ John deal out. But that’s more of like an internal deal making thing and less of, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ John less of a philosophy for the entire structure. And a good example of the physical versus digital thing is
⏹️ ▶️ John ebooks, right? Ebooks are entirely electronic and Apple didn’t invent them.
⏹️ ▶️ John Um, but it just so happens stupidly as I wrote about it in an article about ebooks ages ago,
⏹️ ▶️ John ebooks decided that they’re going to take the business model of physical books and just use that
⏹️ ▶️ John one. Like there’s an existing, uh, business model for physical books involving publishers, authors, and retailers and
⏹️ ▶️ John all that stuff. And when e-books came around, the industry grew up saying, oh yeah, the paper book
⏹️ ▶️ John model, e-books were gonna use that same model. Royalties, publishers, authors, retailers,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, the whole nine yards, down to the point where when the book went from hardcover to softcover,
⏹️ ▶️ John the e-book price would decrease. Because the models were so joined at the hip,
⏹️ ▶️ John right? I’ll definitely find a link to my old e-book thing and you can read about it, but it was
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s better, slightly better today, but the book business was very dumb in many ways, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John But that’s an example of a digital business where Apple has had a lot of problems and
⏹️ ▶️ John where they haven’t been able to get such a big foothold because it was a digital business that
⏹️ ▶️ John would model itself on a physical one. And like I said, in the physical businesses, there’s no room for Apple
⏹️ ▶️ John to parachute in and say 30% for us, because all the parties involved are like, who the hell are you?
⏹️ ▶️ John You don’t get 30%, right? And obviously because eBooks aren’t physical, Eventually,
⏹️ ▶️ John through wearing them down, you can kind of, you know, because there actually is 30% there because there’s no actual
⏹️ ▶️ John book. Like, you know, like this, it works itself out, but it was just, it was interesting to look at as an example of Apple’s
⏹️ ▶️ John possible rationale for the physical versus digital divide, which is, what can we get away
⏹️ ▶️ John with, right? Can we get away with asking for 30% for physical businesses? And you just look around and say,
⏹️ ▶️ John no. Can we get away with digital? And the answer was like, yeah, probably. But it turns out, in a bunch of cases,
⏹️ ▶️ John not really, because the digital businesses that are like physical ones to say no room for you. And then eventually in the digital businesses
⏹️ ▶️ John where there are big powerful players, if Apple tries to hold the line as they are now, turns out maybe not really there
⏹️ ▶️ John either because no one wants to give you 30% of the fortnight V books and no one wants to give you 30% of the Instagram
⏹️ ▶️ John ads and Facebook owns Instagram and it’s like it’s their their rationale was
⏹️ ▶️ John like it’s not flimsy but like so sort of it’s non-principled. It’s like literally what
⏹️ ▶️ John can we get away with and it just so happened that what we can get away with had this kind of of dotted line down the middle. It’s
⏹️ ▶️ John like it kind of looks like physical versus digital. We can make that argument, but that I don’t think is the reasoning
⏹️ ▶️ John at all. So it’s not about what they deserved, it’s about what they thought they can get away with. And
⏹️ ▶️ John what they thought they can get away with and what they can actually get away with I think are diverging.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I would even say it’s probably even simpler than that for like like why they don’t
⏹️ ▶️ Marco take physical good commissions is that probably
⏹️ ▶️ Marco puts them in a much messier and more risky place with disputes and chargebacks.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Like I think it could be that simple, where like, you know, when you have an Apple in-app purchase transaction,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Apple’s the merchant. You know, you are paying Apple directly. If you have an Apple Pay transaction
⏹️ ▶️ Marco on the web, you are paying the merchant directly, and Apple Pay is just like the, it’s
⏹️ ▶️ Marco like part of the credit card intermediary system. And so when there’s a dispute on a credit card payment,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the merchant is the one who gets screwed out of that cost, not the credit card company,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco not the customer. Like the credit card company will refund the customer and they will pull that out of
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the merchant’s account and the merchant just gets screwed. And so any dispute that would
⏹️ ▶️ Marco arise from an in-app purchase, Apple
⏹️ ▶️ Marco would be screwed out of that money. And I think it probably puts them in an easier position with the credit card companies when
⏹️ ▶️ Marco negotiating like what to do about chargebacks that I bet if Apple just
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is only doing digital goods, then they can probably defend a lot more chargeback
⏹️ ▶️ Marco things. Whereas for physical goods, if a merchant
⏹️ ▶️ Marco ships you a physical thing that costs money, and then you do a chargeback, the credit
⏹️ ▶️ Marco company has to be a little bit more careful, and there’s probably different rules and different procedures and different amounts of liability that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco everybody has in that process. So I think it probably is much more likely as simple as,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Apple didn’t want to get involved in the physical goods disputes area,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco whereas with digital goods, disputes are much more straightforward. And the cost
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of what somebody is out who gave you an e-book for free is zero, instead of some
⏹️ ▶️ Marco kind of massive amount of money that they paid to build a car that is now somehow
⏹️ ▶️ Marco missing in the dispute process. So
⏹️ ▶️ John part of what Apple can get away with is dictated by laws. And again, laws about the sale and refunding
⏹️ ▶️ John and liability and physical goods, lots of those very well established. Physical goods have been around for a long time.
⏹️ ▶️ John Laws surrounding the sale of digital goods and the rights of customers and everything like that,
⏹️ ▶️ John very practically non-existent compared to the laws involving physical goods. So again, what can we get away with? Where can we insert
⏹️ ▶️ John ourselves? And where will we be limited? If they were trying to do things in the physical world, like you said,
⏹️ ▶️ John there are many, many laws and regulations and things that they would have to do right off the bat.
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s much harder to deal with that than the digital world where, and I think the idea was,
⏹️ ▶️ John because this is digital world that Apple and its envisioning of itself is inventing, right, like we’re
⏹️ ▶️ John inventing this world, we’re innovating, we’re doing digital subscriptions or whatever, we can do whatever we want. We
⏹️ ▶️ John make all the rules, because everything is just bits, and we’re the bit company, and there are so few consumer
⏹️ ▶️ John protection laws and laws relating to refunds and everything like that, that if we decide that developers can’t give refunds, then
⏹️ ▶️ John we’ll just, we’ll be the only ones who give refunds. And if we decide that if we don’t want to give you the refund, we won’t, no one’s
⏹️ ▶️ John going to stop us, because there’s no laws surrounding refunds based on it. And again, there are state laws and there are digital,
⏹️ ▶️ John laws related to digital commerce meant more than there were before, but compared to the world of physical goods where there’s so many
⏹️ ▶️ John regulations, down to the specific regulations for specific kinds of physical goods. Like
⏹️ ▶️ John if you’re, you know, I mean, to give an example, if you’re buying fertilizer, there’s much more in different
⏹️ ▶️ John rules now than there were like a couple of decades ago for lots of very sad reasons, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John Buying anything like live animals, buying power tools, buying
⏹️ ▶️ John cars, like specific, very targeted laws. If you think about all the laws involving
⏹️ ▶️ John buying and selling physical goods and how detailed they are and how specific they are, then compare them
⏹️ ▶️ John to the laws surrounding the buying and selling of digital goods, you realize the digital world
⏹️ ▶️ John is extremely unregulated, which is great for competition when
⏹️ ▶️ John everything is working well, but when a few large players come to dominate, it means they get to set
⏹️ ▶️ John all the rules. And it just so happens they all seem to pick rules that look very similar to each other. Again, not because
⏹️ ▶️ John of collusion, but mostly because those rules benefit the big companies and give them more and more power with
⏹️ ▶️ John which they can crush their competitors, leaving only one company being what, by and large,
⏹️ ▶️ John Pick your, what’s the mom one in Futurama? Anyway, that’s the future we’re trying to avoid.
⏹️ ▶️ John And whether they know it or not, that’s the future these big companies are trying to achieve. And I think
⏹️ ▶️ John everyone would be sad, including them, if they actually achieved it. They just, you know, we’ve said that Apple thinks of itself as a scrappy
⏹️ ▶️ John upstart, but I think all these companies have a difficult time envisioning themselves
⏹️ ▶️ John as bad or evil, except for Facebook. They probably recognize that they’re bad or evil.
⏹️ ▶️ John I know I bash on Facebook so much. Some, a lot of it is joking, but a lot of it is not. I’m sorry, I don’t
⏹️ ▶️ Marco like them. But they deserve it. They deserve all of it. Facebook makes Apple look like saints.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Like, Apple is like your good friend who’s really been a jerk recently. Facebook is like the devil themselves.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Like it’s like this very different level of evil. I mean, I think
⏹️ ▶️ John at probably even at the very highest levels,
⏹️ ▶️ John they’re losing sight of their effect on the world, but I think they
⏹️ ▶️ John probably mostly believe that what they’re doing is good for the
⏹️ ▶️ John whole world. Obviously they’re playing the game, like we want to win, we’re Facebook, We want to defeat our competitors. And they have no
⏹️ ▶️ John problem doing the Microsoft style tactics of buying your competitors or crushing your competitors through
⏹️ ▶️ John quote unquote anti-competitive mean, you know, and all that stuff or whatever. But the end that they’re pursuing
⏹️ ▶️ John is a connected world where we can all communicate with each other and yada yada. And yes, they get a big cut of that, but in the end,
⏹️ ▶️ John I think they actually buy into that division. They’re just very, very mistaken about what it is that
⏹️ ▶️ John they’re actually doing. And that’s why I get angry at them. because it’s like,
⏹️ ▶️ John I’m done. I’m not going to be able to convince you that what you’re doing is bad. I
⏹️ ▶️ John just need to stop you now, somehow. Speaking of anti-competitive
⏹️ ▶️ John monopoly thing, if you’re worried that Apple has a monopoly in the mobile
⏹️ ▶️ John market, like social media, like Twitter exists, but Facebook
⏹️ ▶️ John I feel like is, they’re not at Microsoft level still. Again, it’s hard to convey exactly how dominant
⏹️ ▶️ John Microsoft was at its peak. Facebook is not as dominant as Microsoft was, but
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s much closer. Facebook, at least in the US anyway, obviously the rest of the world has different
⏹️ ▶️ John social networks, but in the US, and I thought the stats I’ve seen recently, like Facebook, however many
⏹️ ▶️ John billion users Facebook has, it was an extremely visible
⏹️ ▶️ John chunk of the pie of human population of the planet, and that is disconcerting.
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#askatp: Mac OS reviews
⏹️ ▶️ Casey right, let’s do some Ask ATP and James Andrews writes, John, when you did your MacOS reviews, how much,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey actually, was that OS 10 still at that point or were you during the MacOS era?
⏹️ ▶️ John No, I was in the MacOS 10 era and the OS 10 era.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Okay, see, there you go. Wow. Gosh, it’s been so long, John. It’s been so
⏹️ ▶️ Marco long. Literally, as Casey was reading that question, John went into the show notes document
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and put a space between Mac and OS.
⏹️ ▶️ John Because I feel like you could still say generically Mac OS, which is the Mac operating system. There was no
⏹️ ▶️ John product name that was based on Next Step, Unix, blah, blah, blah. There was a classic Mac OS. Anyway, yeah,
⏹️ ▶️ John it looks gross when it’s stuck together. Who is it that always insists on capitalizing the M? Does
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco do that? Gruber
⏹️ ▶️ John does it, yeah. Yeah, no, I don’t like
⏹️ ▶️ John Anyway, I hate the lowercase m. Don’t get me wrong, but I feel like if that’s what they named it, then
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey that’s OK. Anyway,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Finish the question. Let me just try this all over again. John, when you did your Mac OS reviews,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey how much of the review changed between the review content based on beta releases and final release?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Or how much of the OS could you bank on staying the same versus stuff that changed? Was it consistent? I remember
⏹️ ▶️ Casey during the run of this show, you complaining and moaning unjustifiably about screenshots and how you had to take
⏹️ ▶️ Casey them 84 times because every single time you took them, something changed. But I would assume
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that some of the content also changed as well. So what do you say to James?
⏹️ ▶️ John I can say that it definitely wasn’t consistent, that’s for sure. The fear was always there, and the worst case scenario,
⏹️ ▶️ John I mean, screenshots were bad, and just gave you that sinking feeling when you’d see the GM build, and they
⏹️ ▶️ John changed some subtle thing that appears in every single window, and you’re like, ah, because it takes so long
⏹️ ▶️ John to arrange those screenshots and everything. Yeah, that’s bad, but it’s kind of a known quantity.
⏹️ ▶️ John The worst ones, though, were if there was some, and this is, you know, I had so little access to Apple
⏹️ ▶️ John back then, not that I have any access now, but I had even less access to Apple back then, like
⏹️ ▶️ John zero access to Apple. It was just me out there in the wild and it wasn’t even like social networks
⏹️ ▶️ John like Twitter where I had a chance to bump into and talk directly to Apple engineers, you know, secretly or in
⏹️ ▶️ John public, right? So there’d be things in the OS and I’d be like, is this supposed
⏹️ ▶️ John to be this way? Or is this just a bug? Or is
⏹️ ▶️ John this policy here an intentional policy change in this subsystem?
⏹️ ▶️ John Or is it unintentional, right? And so, or behaviors, like
⏹️ ▶️ John anything that I can think about, it was never clear to me whether it was on purpose or not.
⏹️ ▶️ John And the worst thing that would happen is there’d be some kind of new change in behavior or UI or whatever.
⏹️ ▶️ John And it would be like a thing that I had a lot to say about. And I would say, I would spend like a page
⏹️ ▶️ John and a half explaining why this is bad, or a page and a half explaining why this is good, or
⏹️ ▶️ John whatever, and just make it a big part of the writing. and then three betas in, they would totally change that.
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s like, but I was just building my review around this thing, but it turns out you changed your mind
⏹️ ▶️ John or it was just a bug or that feature isn’t shipping in those OS and you pulled the code for it out.
⏹️ ▶️ John And then you have to rewrite. And it’s harder to do this to make screenshots over again. At least you say, here’s the old screenshot.
⏹️ ▶️ John I was gonna make it look like it’s a fairly mindless activity. Rewriting, especially I was trying to have some
⏹️ ▶️ John kind of narrative structure to these reviews. Rewriting the review, especially at the last minute-ish,
⏹️ ▶️ John like as in the second to last or, you know, maybe even the final beta or whatever and they change something, you’re like, ah,
⏹️ ▶️ John even if it’s a bad thing, like I spent, you know, three pages yelling at you about this and you just pulled the feature. Now I gotta
⏹️ ▶️ John remove all that and fix it all together. You know, it’s just, that was the worst. And
⏹️ ▶️ John no, there was nothing you could count on. Like things would change up to the last second. Like you could
⏹️ ▶️ John never rely on, even if it’s like, oh, this is the GM build. No, the really real GM build, you
⏹️ ▶️ John always had to go for every build and more frantically as time went on, install
⏹️ ▶️ John it as fast as you can and go through every single thing you wrote about over and over and over again and say, is this the same,
⏹️ ▶️ John is this the same, is this still true, is this still true? It was really bad. It was a little
⏹️ ▶️ John bit better in the early days when I could publish my review like a week after the OS came out and nobody cared
⏹️ ▶️ John because you’d have to go into a physical store and buy it and whatever, but eventually it became downloadable and eventually it became free and eventually
⏹️ ▶️ John I had to have the review up the second the thing was downloadable by consumers. So the timing
⏹️ ▶️ John of making sure that you got the final build and verified everything in it and rewrote and retook screenshots
⏹️ ▶️ John and had it ready to go the second the thing was released, that’s why I still have like, you know, you have those
⏹️ ▶️ John school nightmares. I have like the Mac OS X review deadline nightmares. Just not cut out for that
⏹️ ▶️ John kind of pressure cooker and the reason I’m kind of glad I’m no longer in that business.
⏹️ ▶️ John It was exciting but also terrifying And yeah, Apple really didn’t do anything to help there.
#askatp: Spam filtering
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Michael Boyle writes, what approach or tools do you use to filter spam email? Do you use G
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Suite on your domain and use built-in Google spam filtering? Other third-party email hosting services, third-party dedicated
⏹️ ▶️ Casey spam filtering services, built-in email services on a basic web host plus spam assassin or other, client-side filtering like SpamSive,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey or just the built-in Apple Mail filtering? For me, I have a Google-backed
⏹️ ▶️ Casey email address and I rely on their stuff and the stuff built into Apple Mail and that’s it.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey What about you, Marco?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’ve gone through a bunch of things over the years. I used to do Apple Mail junk filtering
⏹️ ▶️ Marco back forever ago. It was always okay. It was never great. I never
⏹️ ▶️ Marco used a lot of the alternatives out there. I’ve never used Gmail,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco but I have used FastMail for a very long time. For a while, I used their
⏹️ ▶️ Marco built-in spam filtering, which is just running, I assume it was a spam assassin,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco either a spam assassin itself or something like that, some kind of server-side Bayesian filter thing.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And then for a long time after that, I used MailRoute. They were a sponsor of ours a few years
⏹️ ▶️ Marco back, and they gave us free accounts. And so I’ve been using MailRoute,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco coincidentally, literally for that entire time until this week. I literally just switched away
⏹️ ▶️ Marco from it this week. And it’s not that they did anything horribly wrong,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco But they’ve had a few additional false, what’s the thing where it
⏹️ ▶️ Marco reports good mail as spam? Is that a false positive or a false negative?
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s a false positive. Yes, okay. It’s confusing because spam isn’t positive, but what it’s supposed to be doing is identifying spam,
⏹️ ▶️ John and it has identified something as spam, a positive identification, but it’s
⏹️ ▶️ Marco false. Got it, anyway, so MailRoute has been great for all these years,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco but in like the last month or so, there’s been a noticeable increase in the false positive rate.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And so I decided to try switching away from it. I haven’t actually entered my account or anything. I’m just like temporarily
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I pointed my MX’s directly at Fastmail. And I’m trying Fastmail’s built in stuff
⏹️ ▶️ Marco only. One of the good things about Fastmail’s thing is it allows you to train it. Like you can set, like
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you can tell it like, you know, this folder, which I’ve set to my archive folder, use this as the training
⏹️ ▶️ Marco example of not spam. So anything I archive is, you know, trained to be not spam. And then
⏹️ ▶️ Marco there’s a separate folder, There’s one folder which is like what they’ve filtered as junk. There’s another
⏹️ ▶️ Marco folder that you can designate, any folder in your iMap account, you can designate as like, learn that this folder
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is spam. And so I’m putting stuff into that folder that I manually catch that they didn’t catch,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco which honestly is not that much stuff. They’re actually catching most of it. So I’ve only been doing
⏹️ ▶️ Marco this for a few days, so take this with a grain of salt, but so far Fastmail’s
⏹️ ▶️ Marco modern spam filtering, which is I think significantly more advanced than in the old Spam Assassin
⏹️ ▶️ Marco type server. I think it’s pretty good so far. And it’s also noticeably faster
⏹️ ▶️ Marco than MailRoute for new stuff to come in and everything. I don’t think they’re doing graylisting as aggressively and everything, so it’s actually quite
⏹️ ▶️ Marco nice. So anyway, that’s my solution is currently FastMail, just
⏹️ ▶️ Marco their built-in filtering with my training boxes for some minor adjustments. But
⏹️ ▶️ Marco up until very recently, FastMail with MailRoute in front of it. John?
⏹️ ▶️ John So I use Gmail and Gmail spam filtering, and it’s mostly OK. I
⏹️ ▶️ John mean, I still have to wrangle it a little bit, and there are certain things it just doesn’t seem to want to learn. But in general, it doesn’t bother
⏹️ ▶️ John me. But I have many email addresses, so I have exposure to a lot of other ones. Back in the day when I was using POP and
⏹️ ▶️ John IMAP and everything, I used SpamSive and loved it. But it’s kind of the, as I talked about before, my
⏹️ ▶️ John sort of switch from client side to server side. I’m happy to have it all server side. For server side, I also use MailRoute
⏹️ ▶️ John on one of my addresses. I think MailRoute was a former sponsor. And I’m happy with it, how it works
⏹️ ▶️ John on my one account that I use it on. I get the emails that show me the messages that
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s not sure about or whatever, and it’s right like 100% of the time. But that’s a low volume account, so it’s pretty easy to do. But
⏹️ ▶️ John I’m happy that I have that because it catches a ton of stuff. Because what I want from a low volume email, I
⏹️ ▶️ John want it to actually be a little volume. But if you get any publicly accessible email address, it suddenly becomes flooded with spam. And instead,
⏹️ ▶️ John what MailRoute does for me in that account is, or I have several accounts actually going through it, It makes it so
⏹️ ▶️ John they are low volume. Only the legit emails get through. The thing I wanna talk about though is, I also
⏹️ ▶️ John have multiple, but anyway, Apple iCloud accounts, and iCloud accounts
⏹️ ▶️ John come with their own email address, right? And I use Apple Mail on my phone to receive them because
⏹️ ▶️ John I have no choice, because it’s the only thing I can use as my outgoing email client, so I have to set it up.
⏹️ ▶️ John And so it’s set up with one or more of my iCloud accounts. I use Apple Mail on my phone,
⏹️ ▶️ John And I’m surprised when this question said, where is it, that, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ John built-in Apple mail filtering and you two referred to it as if it’s a thing. As far as I’ve been able to determine,
⏹️ ▶️ John my iCloud Apple email address does no spam filtering whatsoever because the spammiest
⏹️ ▶️ John messages in the entire universe come in like a flood to that email address.
⏹️ ▶️ John Viagra, Russian Mail Order Brides, Mesothelioma, Like the worst kind
⏹️ ▶️ John of spam, things in languages that I don’t understand, Chinese language things, Russian,
⏹️ ▶️ John Italian, just like, how can you not tell this is spam? This is the easiest
⏹️ ▶️ John to detect spam in the world and it’s like 100% of it comes through. And then what I do
⏹️ ▶️ John in reaction to that, what I still do is I use this horrible Apple Mail interface and hit the little reply button
⏹️ ▶️ John and scroll down to find the file as junk thing. I do that hoping
⏹️ ▶️ John against all hope that hitting that button somehow tells something in the Apple Mail
⏹️ ▶️ John world to learn that this is spam, but I think it does nothing except for move the message to a folder.
⏹️ ▶️ John So Apple’s quote unquote spam filtering is apparently,
⏹️ ▶️ John from my perspective, non-existent and non-functional, and yet every day I have to go in there
⏹️ ▶️ John and clean out that stupid spam because I’m forced to have an Apple Mail account that’s configured with a thing so I can
⏹️ ▶️ John send outgoing mail from my phone. Thumbs down for Apple Mail.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Wait, slow down. Why do you need it to send outgoing mail
⏹️ ▶️ John from your phone? To send outgoing mail, you have to configure an account in the Apple Mail client. So
⏹️ ▶️ John I have to configure a account.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Oh, because you’re saying you use Gmail normally, so you’re using the Gmail app normally.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Right, yeah. Well, you could, but why not just add Gmail, though?
⏹️ ▶️ John Because Apple Mail and iOS can’t handle my Gmail account. Are you kidding? It can’t handle
⏹️ ▶️ John that much mail. It would just, like, I think I did that in the early days. There’s no
⏹️ ▶️ John way. There’s no way. Like I don’t want Apple Mail anywhere near my Gmail account and this
⏹️ ▶️ John is no way it would be like, I don’t even want it having to try to download that amount of mail each day in the background or whatever
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s doing. Like just, like in theory, the accounts that I use with my Apple Mail thing, I just use
⏹️ ▶️ John my Apple ones because I’m like, well, I know the Apple Mail client will work with the Apple Mail server. So
⏹️ ▶️ John I feel like they’re a match set, but I have to have one configured because you can’t send outgoing mail through until you configure
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Fair enough. Thank you.
#askatp: Cable hoarding
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Finally, Chris Anderson writes, like many listeners, I’m sure I’ve amassed quite the collection
⏹️ ▶️ Casey of cables over the years. USB-A, micro USB, lightning, ethernet, HDMI power, etc. The list goes on and on.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Any suggestions on how to effectively store and organize all those cables at home? I’m sure one solution would be to
⏹️ ▶️ Casey downsize the collection, but you never know when you’re going to need 20 USB cables all at once. I
⏹️ ▶️ Casey don’t really have a good answer for this. So, Marco, do you have something good here?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I would suggest not storing or organizing too many of these cables.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Whatever you are currently using, I would say, and you might be using
⏹️ ▶️ Marco more than you think, actually add up what you’re using and keep in reserve like 20%
⏹️ ▶️ Marco more for the very common types. For the very uncommon
⏹️ ▶️ Marco types, I would say keep like one to two of each one that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you still have any potential use for in your house. Like obviously,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco if you don’t have any devices that use like firewire anymore, you don’t need to keep any firewire
⏹️ ▶️ Marco cables. That’s an easy one. Not everybody practices this, but that’s an easy one. Just
⏹️ ▶️ Marco throw away any cable that you no longer have a device for. But yeah, for stuff like
⏹️ ▶️ Marco USB cables, well, yeah we do need a lot of USB cables, but almost
⏹️ ▶️ Marco everything that needs a USB cable comes with a USB cable also. So you don’t need to keep that many in reserve.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco You’re basically keeping in reserve either cables for specialty needs, like super
⏹️ ▶️ Marco long or super short ones, or cables to replace other cables that get worn
⏹️ ▶️ Marco or broken or lost. And that, unless that happens a lot in your house, like
⏹️ ▶️ Marco if you’re burning through, maybe keep the USB-A to Lightning ones that your kid’s iPad uses,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco because those will get burned through a lot. But otherwise, you don’t need to keep most of these cables.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco any given time. Everyone’s had one of these stories in life. I’ve been there, trust me, where
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you don’t have the right cable. Right now, I actually have this going on right now. I don’t have an HDMI
⏹️ ▶️ Marco cable. I need one. I don’t have one. I have to order one. It’s going to take three days to get here.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Had I just kept an extra HDMI cable at some point in my life, maybe I wouldn’t be in this situation. Anyway, we’ve
⏹️ ▶️ Marco all been in the situation where you need a cable and you have to go to Best Buy or something,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and you have to get the stupid gold-plated one for $45 and you’re just like, oh,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I know I’m being ripped off, but I need this cable today. I can’t get, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco any drones or trucks to deliver it to me same day. So I just, I have
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to just eat it and just buy it. And then that scars you for life. And then after that point, you’ll never throw
⏹️ ▶️ Marco away a cable because what if you need this someday? Cause you were burned once.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And it’s important to be able to examine this feeling and this trauma
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and this past battle that you fought and learn this lesson from and try to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco unlearn it because chances are that doesn’t happen very often for
⏹️ ▶️ Marco almost any cable type and you’re probably doing yourself a disservice by
⏹️ ▶️ Marco keeping like three bins worth of cables of which you will only
⏹️ ▶️ Marco ever use maybe three or four of you know most of those cables are gonna
⏹️ ▶️ Marco sit around for years and years and years until you finally realize, oh, it’s been
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a while since I’ve used a parallel cable. I guess I can finally throw this away.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So like, you know, ideally, don’t let it get to that point. Ideally,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco go through that process of throwing things away as you get them. So right now, for instance, almost every device
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that I buy that comes with a micro USB cable, I just throw it right
⏹️ ▶️ Marco away. Like literally, I empty the box out over the trash can. I take the device
⏹️ ▶️ Marco out and I empty over the trash can the manual, the USB A to micro
⏹️ ▶️ Marco cable, and like the little plastic thing that holds it in the box, I just dump it all out.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco All that’s garbage. Get rid of it. There’s no reason to even keep a micro USB to A cable
⏹️ ▶️ Marco for me now because I have so many of them all over the place that when a new one comes into the house, it just goes straight into the garbage.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’m almost to that point with Apple’s lightning cables, Apple’s lightning to A cables, but Again, we’re
⏹️ ▶️ Marco burning through those because we have an iPad problem. So we’re burning through those kind of quickly
⏹️ ▶️ Marco these days. So I’m keeping those. But like, you know, even like, you know, certainly a
⏹️ ▶️ Marco USB A to B cable, almost anything that has USB B
⏹️ ▶️ Marco port comes with a USB A to B cable. As you’re transitioning to USB C,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco we need even fewer of these old cables. If it’s something that I’m bringing with me for travel,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it doesn’t need to be USB A at all because my travel setup is all USB-C. Adopt a strategy of
⏹️ ▶️ Marco aggressively throwing things away as you go. How many ethernet cables do you really
⏹️ ▶️ Marco need? It’s more than zero probably, but I bet it’s less than 15.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco How many HDMI cables do you need? Well, how many HDMI inputs do you have in your house?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Three to eight probably, total? Do you really need more than
⏹️ ▶️ Marco eight HDMI cables total, including the ones that are already connected to the TV? Probably not. All right,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco so you can kind of do this kind of exercise. Like just anything that you think odds are pretty
⏹️ ▶️ Marco low I’ll ever actually need this many of this thing, just throw it away. And ideally,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the cable collection that you should be left with after doing that kind of, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco thorough and ruthless purging of your collection should be so small
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that you don’t need to put much effort into organizing it. It should organize itself because there should only be like
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a handful of cables left.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey John, how is your attic in terms of cable management?
⏹️ ▶️ John Poor Chris just wanted to know how to store and organize cables and we’re all just telling him to get rid of his cables, which he just specifically
⏹️ ▶️ John said he didn’t want to be told to do. My life is complicated by the fact that,
⏹️ ▶️ John like the Marco rule of when you no longer have devices to use the cable, you can get rid of them, does not help me because
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco I don’t get rid of my devices.
⏹️ ▶️ John I have devices that need SCSI cables, so of course I gotta keep the SCSI cables. of what I’m needing, yeah.
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco It doesn’t make
⏹️ ▶️ Marco sense. Well, then keep this crazy cable in the box of the thing that actually
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco uses it. Yeah,
⏹️ ▶️ John yeah, yeah, but anyway, I have a lot of cables and having spare cables is handy too. But
⏹️ ▶️ John my sort of management technique for this, and by the way, the two things you mentioned, interestingly, HDMI cables and ethernet
⏹️ ▶️ John cables, I am chronically low on. And it’s constantly annoying me. Like, if I need to hook up like a single
⏹️ ▶️ John other device via ethernet, I find out I have zero ethernet cables in the house and then I buy one, right? And every time that
⏹️ ▶️ John happens, I’m like, I have zero ethernet cables. When I got the Mac Pro, I actually did buy some new ethernet cables, but I think I’m using
⏹️ ▶️ John all of them, so I think I’m back to zero. Same thing with HDMI. I found a HDMI cable that went bad,
⏹️ ▶️ John that was driving me batty for a little while, back before I got my Mac Pro, and I put a big piece of tape
⏹️ ▶️ John on it that said bad, because it wasn’t totally bad, it would work sometimes.
⏹️ ▶️ John John. It was the only, but here’s the thing, it was the only one I had in the house. Like every other one was connected
⏹️ ▶️ John to a device. And I think it might have been when I got my PlayStation monitor, This was literally the only
⏹️ ▶️ John one that I had. I couldn’t get rid of it, because then I could not use it at all, but it was bad
⏹️ ▶️ John because occasionally it would conk out and I’d have to unplug it and plug it back in, but it was better than zero. But as soon as I
⏹️ ▶️ John got back on my cable buying spree, the bad one goes in the garbage, right? So my advice for
⏹️ ▶️ John storing and organizing cables is to treat your house like a cash hierarchy for cables,
⏹️ ▶️ John and have the sort of the registers or L1 cache be the cables you actually
⏹️ ▶️ John need to use for your devices, the Marco rule, right? So when I got my whole big Mac Pro setup, I had a big pile of cables
⏹️ ▶️ John that no longer plugged into anything in this room. Every single one of those cables went to L2 cache or maybe L3,
⏹️ ▶️ John whatever my attic is, right? HDMI cables, I have the connected ones. I have an accessible
⏹️ ▶️ John small amount as my L2 and then my L3 is I have a Tupperware bin where I keep HDMI cables,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, now that I have more of them than I need, right? So have a caching hierarchy. And what you can do with the caching hierarchy is,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, just in the ones that you use all the time, like constantly reassess those, if you literally have no micro USB
⏹️ ▶️ John devices that you use, that should not be, you should not ever see that cable. And as you graduate cables up
⏹️ ▶️ John the hierarchy, you will eventually sometime come to like one of these Tupperware containers and you’ll open
⏹️ ▶️ John it and at that point you’ll realize either that the cables have become so old and
⏹️ ▶️ John brittle and disgusting you need to throw them out because they’re gross and they’re probably broken, or B, you realize, actually
⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t have any devices that use this cable anymore and you’ll just throw them out. But you need to get them
⏹️ ▶️ John out of your life before you get them out of your house. That will help you with organizing them.
⏹️ ▶️ John And if you think you have so many cables that you need literally in your life that you need to organize them
⏹️ ▶️ John into like, people like the idea of having a big drawer that you can pull out and see all the cables, but that’s too much in
⏹️ ▶️ John your life. Unless you actually run a computer repair store or something, you don’t need that ready access to these
⏹️ ▶️ John cables. They can go into the more distant caches. You’ll know they’re there when they need them if you need to write
⏹️ ▶️ John down where they are or whatever, but then you care less about them being neatly coiled or divided or labeled. They’re just,
⏹️ ▶️ John they’re out of sight. And the out of sight stuff, when you go on your various purges, that’s where
⏹️ ▶️ John you purge from. Because you’ll find that easier. When you literally haven’t seen it for a year, and you come upon it
⏹️ ▶️ John again in a Tupperware thing, it’s much easier to dump it than if it had been sitting coiled perfectly in a little drawer next to your desk
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Thanks to our sponsors this week, Linode, Backblaze, and Mint Mobile. And thank you to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco our members who support us directly. If you want to become a member and get some cool benefits, go to atp.fm
⏹️ ▶️ Marco slash join. and we will see you next week.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey show is over, they didn’t even mean to begin, Cause it was accidental,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey oh it was accidental. John didn’t do any research, Marco
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and Casey wouldn’t let
⏹️ ▶️ John him, Cause it was accidental,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey oh it was accidental. And you can find
⏹️ ▶️ John the show notes at ATP.FM And if you’re
⏹️ ▶️ John into Twitter, you can follow them at
⏹️ ▶️ Marco C-A-S-E-Y-L-I-S-S So that’s Casey Liss, M-A-R-C-O-A-R-M,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and T. Marco Armin,
⏹️ ▶️ John S-I-R-A-C-U-S-A-C-R-A-Q-U-S-A It’s
⏹️ ▶️ John didn’t mean to Accidental, check the
John’s Mac Pro Woes
⏹️ ▶️ Casey So right before we started recording, something appeared in the after
⏹️ ▶️ Casey show section of the show notes and it says, John’s
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Mac Pro Woes. Oh no. Yeah.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco going on? I saw this too. I read that moment. I’m like, oh no, this is not good.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Oh John, what’s up? Hmm. Well. Should we pour you
⏹️ ▶️ John those, no, it’s one of those things where, it’s like one of those,
⏹️ ▶️ John not a slow moving disaster, but like it’s kind of a gradual thing where I’m trying to pinpoint like when did this all begin?
⏹️ ▶️ John Because it begins innocuously and you don’t pinpoint the time, right? Here’s how it began. I’m
⏹️ ▶️ John pretty sure this is where it began. I was back from my vacation
⏹️ ▶️ John and I was making another photo book as I do after my vacations. This is going to be the first non, well it’s not the first non Long
⏹️ ▶️ John Island photo book, it’s going to be the first year without a Long Island photo book. I’ve made photo books of my trips to other places
⏹️ ▶️ John like Walt Disney World or whatever, but anyway. Making my photo book and I made it all up
⏹️ ▶️ John and after you submit the photo book, like it takes a while to upload all the images, much, not because of my connection,
⏹️ ▶️ John but just because the server on the other end is slow. So it’s like, all right, fine. Apple Photos is preparing the photos and
⏹️ ▶️ John uploading it and blah, blah, blah. So I left, I left, I was like, fine, you go upload these computers. And then
⏹️ ▶️ John I just like watch a TV show with my family and then later I’m like, oh yeah, the computer’s probably
⏹️ ▶️ John done doing that book. And I came back in and the screen was off.
⏹️ ▶️ John And I’m like, oh, it must’ve gone to sleep. It must’ve finished the upload and gone to sleep. But then I couldn’t wake it up.
⏹️ ▶️ John tried space bar, mouse button, you know, like
⏹️ ▶️ John the fans were going, but it wasn’t, nothing was happening. So I went to another computer and checked, couldn’t ping it, couldn’t
⏹️ ▶️ John SSH, right? And I’m like, well, I don’t know, where maybe, maybe that, maybe the thing
⏹️ ▶️ John crashed something in the photo extension. Who knows what could have happened? It was so long though, I’m like, surely the book
⏹️ ▶️ John went through, right? And so I hard reset my computer, held down the power button, the
⏹️ ▶️ John thing booted back up. I could see in the email, there was a confirmation email, and I think the book is actually being shipped to
⏹️ ▶️ John me now. So I’m hoping when the book arrives, it hasn’t arrived yet, but I hope it arrives, that it will have all the pictures in it. Like,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, anyway, I think the book actually did go through, but that was the first instance I can remember of,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, I couldn’t wake my computer up, right? And then a couple of days later,
⏹️ ▶️ John Similar thing happened where I wasn’t doing anything of note in particular, but then I went up to my computer to wake
⏹️ ▶️ John it up and it didn’t wake up. Like it was asleep, dead asleep, right? And then I
⏹️ ▶️ John hit the space bar and the fans would spin up, like it’s coming back to life, right? And I could hear my hard drive spin up,
⏹️ ▶️ John my few spinning hard drives in there, but it wouldn’t wake up. Same deal, can’t SSH
⏹️ ▶️ John in, can’t ping, can’t do anything, right? And yes, I have SSH
⏹️ ▶️ John enabled in this computer and all that stuff. That’s a thing I do all the time. I don’t think I had time
⏹️ ▶️ John to investigate a den, but then the next day I was thinking about it, I’m like, wait a second. Because I’d been messing with my sleep
⏹️ ▶️ John settings because I’d been doing some long running stuff and at various times I have a Mac configured to never go to sleep,
⏹️ ▶️ John but I manually put it to sleep sometimes. And I also have it scheduled to wake up in the middle of the night and do things.
⏹️ ▶️ John And for a while it was like, maybe it’s waking up in the middle of the night and flipping out about something or whatever. But eventually,
⏹️ ▶️ John after a couple of days, I was like, all right, maybe there’s something wrong here. So, you know, I do
⏹️ ▶️ John an experiment, put my computer to sleep manually, which I hadn’t done in a long time because I’ve been doing those long running tasks.
⏹️ ▶️ John Try to wake it up, doesn’t wake up, hard reset. I do that experiment a couple times
⏹️ ▶️ John and I start to come to this drawing realization that my computer no longer wakes from sleep,
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey right? That’s
⏹️ ▶️ John undesirable. And I’m thinking, what changed recently? And it’s hard to pinpoint because you’re like,
⏹️ ▶️ John when did this really happen? Was the photo book thing really the first one or did the photo book thing really crash? Like what’s, what
⏹️ ▶️ John happened recently? So I, I start going through basic troubleshooting stuff. Right.
⏹️ ▶️ John And I, I mean, I, maybe I started down the wrong path, but the first thing I’m always thinking of a sleep wake is, you know, I go into PM
⏹️ ▶️ John set of looking at the sleep wake log I have, like I have all I’m when I tried to do, like when I first got it and tried
⏹️ ▶️ John to stop it from waking itself up right from stuff I had, I’d set up a lot of systems for
⏹️ ▶️ John looking at all the sleep and wake reasons and everything like that. But the problem with this situation was it would go
⏹️ ▶️ John to sleep and the logs would I’ll say yep, totally I’m going to sleep just like you told me to and the next log
⏹️ ▶️ John message would be booting up Like there was nothing happening Like when I thought I was waking it up
⏹️ ▶️ John It never got to the point where it woke up like there were no other logs It’s the last log message would be I’m going to
⏹️ ▶️ John sleep in the next log message would be hello. I’m booting right and So my sleep
⏹️ ▶️ John wake logs and everything else weren’t weren’t helping then I went into just okay Let me try all the different sleep settings power
⏹️ ▶️ John nap on and off spin hard drives up on it, like all settings that I had configured and messed with
⏹️ ▶️ John earlier, but I’m like maybe there’s something wonky about something or other. So let me see if changing any of these software settings helps,
⏹️ ▶️ John nothing helps. Like no matter what I had it set to, you put it to sleep and that was it, it would not
⏹️ ▶️ John wake back up again, right? Then I’m starting to, well, I think I did
⏹️ ▶️ John a really reasonably sensible thing, which is like I had Big Sur on an external disk. I’m like, well,
⏹️ ▶️ John one of the things that happened recently is I upgraded to 10.15.6, right? that was like recently, like
⏹️ ▶️ John last weekish or something, or I don’t know, anyway, it’s a recent OS update. It’s like maybe 10.15.6 broke sleep on the Mac Pro.
⏹️ ▶️ John And it’s not the type of thing I’m likely to hear about because nobody has these computers. Let me boot into Big
⏹️ ▶️ John Sur. So I boot into Big Sur, it’s beta five at that point, right? I put the computer to sleep, doesn’t
⏹️ ▶️ John wake up. And you know, I repeat that. Put the computer to sleep in Big Sur, doesn’t wake up. I’m like, all right, all
⏹️ ▶️ John right. Now, now I’m suspecting hardware. Because if this is a software thing, It’s not
⏹️ ▶️ John 1015-6, and it’s not Big Sur Beta 5, because they both do it, and it’s exactly the same
⏹️ ▶️ John symptom. So now I think I have a hardware thing. So I’m like, okay, hardware thing. The first thing I look at, can
⏹️ ▶️ John you guess the first thing I look at on my desk?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Your screen? Why would it be your screen, though?
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey Always suspect the USB hub,
⏹️ ▶️ John because they’re like, well, you know, this is, I’ve had this USB hub. This is the one piece of hardware I’ve still had
⏹️ ▶️ John that I use with my old Mac Pro. So I’m suspicious of that. So I’m like, yank that out of the computer,
⏹️ ▶️ John right? Just disconnect it entirely. And this is such a pain because due to my wiring thing, I actually have
⏹️ ▶️ John like my keyboard and mouse wired and they go through the hub so I don’t have to have the two cables snaking. Anyway,
⏹️ ▶️ John I switched to, you know, using my keyboard in Bluetooth mode, which I normally don’t do just because
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s inconvenient. And I switched my mouse to Bluetooth mode. Disconnect the USB
⏹️ ▶️ John hub, doesn’t help. And now I’m like, all right, scorched earth. I am removing everything
⏹️ ▶️ John from this computer hardware-wise. But before I do that, I end up going to the Apple support page and it’s like, you should do an SMC reset.
⏹️ ▶️ John You should do an NVRAM reset. You should do all these other things or whatever. I’m like, all right, I go through the motions. I do an SMC
⏹️ ▶️ John reset. I do an NVRAM reset. You should spin in a circle. Yeah, I do all those things, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John Because they recommend them, right? They also recommend, eventually getting to the hardware things, you disconnect everything from your computer
⏹️ ▶️ John that’s not an Apple keyboard, mouse, and monitor. I can do that, right? I disconnect every
⏹️ ▶️ John single thing. disconnect all the external hard drives, disconnect all the hubs. Literally the only thing connected to this computer is an
⏹️ ▶️ John Apple monitor, an Apple keyboard, and Apple mouse. Put the thing to sleep, won’t wake up.
⏹️ ▶️ John Right? I’m like, okay, all right. Still think it’s hardware, because how could it not be
⏹️ ▶️ John hardware? Like Big Sur did it, and you know,
⏹️ ▶️ John what the hell is Catalina, also did it. It can’t be the software update. Like two totally
⏹️ ▶️ John different OSs, you know, are different enough, have this exact same sentence, right? So I’m like, okay,
⏹️ ▶️ John what other weird ass hardware I’ve got? Well, I’ve got the spinning hard drives in there. Maybe one of the hard drives is going bad. You know, if a hard drive ever
⏹️ ▶️ John goes bad, you get weird errors, right? And one of the things that happens when you wake up from sleep is the hard drive spin up. So
⏹️ ▶️ John maybe one of the hard drives is like, is pulling too much power and like,
⏹️ ▶️ John undervolting the whole, you know, motherboard, or it’s tripping some safety measure, or there’s
⏹️ ▶️ John a bad bearing in it and it can’t spin up, or like, God knows what’s going on.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Let me just, for a very brief time, register my continued disappointment that you have the 2019 Mac
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Pro and you also put spinning hard drives
⏹️ ▶️ John in it. That’s the greatest, one of the reasons I like it is because I can put them in there because it’s way cheaper to get, you know, 16 terabytes
⏹️ ▶️ John of storage inside my computer if I had to do that in SSDs, you know, I already spent a lot. Anyway, so I go
⏹️ ▶️ John in there, and by the way, this is the beginning of the opening the computer phase of this operation
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco which lasted a
⏹️ ▶️ John long time, right? This computer, as I’ve said before, is way harder to get to the inside
⏹️ ▶️ John of than the old cheese grater because that door you could get off in a second. I used to take that door on and off
⏹️ ▶️ John with the cheese grater, the old Mac Pro under my desk. I would just go under there, flip, poop, thing comes off in two
⏹️ ▶️ John seconds. This thing, it’s an ordeal to get off. I have to take, the procedure
⏹️ ▶️ John I ended up with is, like if you try to take it off when, you’ve seen it in a little picture, and did you see the picture
⏹️ ▶️ John where it is in the relay thing where I showed a picture of my
⏹️ ▶️ John Become a relay member, everybody, and go look at the, you can see a picture of my desk at home. I think I tweeted it too, eventually.
⏹️ ▶️ John Anyway, it’s on a little table, And if I try to pull vertically the Mac Pro case
⏹️ ▶️ John off, it’s actually hard to continue to pull perfectly vertically straight, starting from
⏹️ ▶️ John a position that’s like desk height, because it’s a tall case and you end up like, I mean, I’m a tall person, but
⏹️ ▶️ John you end up, it’s hard to, you have to really pull it off exactly straight. If you do it a little bit at an angle, it’s bad, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John So my procedure was, disconnect all the cables, of course, because remember, you can’t get the case
⏹️ ▶️ John off without the cable. So disconnect all the cables, find some place to put the cable so they won’t slide down behind my
⏹️ ▶️ John desk, because my desk is against a wall and has a wall to its left and a thing to its right.
⏹️ ▶️ John So my cables, like if they slip down to the floor, I’m on my belly crawling under there to find
⏹️ ▶️ John them again. So I had a big piece of masking tape and I’m like taping them. So take the cables out, tape
⏹️ ▶️ John them to wherever they’re gonna be, lift the Mac Pro off of the little mini table, put it on the floor,
⏹️ ▶️ John pick the thing, twist it up, lift perfectly straight up very, very carefully, put that thing away,
⏹️ ▶️ John pick the Mac Pro, which is very heavy by the way, up again, put it back on your desk and now you can work on it. So
⏹️ ▶️ John I did that, I disconnected both of my Sping hard drives,
⏹️ ▶️ John I plugged the, and the power to them by the way, so it’s three connectors, it’s two little SATA connectors and like a
⏹️ ▶️ John power thing. Disconnect all three of those cables, put the case back on, put it in,
⏹️ ▶️ John put it to sleep, wake it up, it wakes. Like, all right, well, at least I found
⏹️ ▶️ John the problem. And this is many hours into this because I said it really quickly here, or I’m trying to say it really quickly, but remember, every time
⏹️ ▶️ John I do this, It’s a hard reboot of my computer, and I’m taking off
⏹️ ▶️ John these cables, I’m crawling around, and this is absorbing all of a Saturday, right? I’m like,
⏹️ ▶️ John finally found what it was. So I was relieved to get that thing out of your head, of at least I know what the problem is now. I don’t know why
⏹️ ▶️ John the problem is these spinning discs, but whatever, I found the problem.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’m so hoping the problem is your U-shaped piece of metal.
⏹️ ▶️ John Oh God. I mean, the piece of metal does nothing, right? But obviously the hard drives are in that. I
⏹️ ▶️ Marco know, but you focus so much on, you know, how ridiculous it was that this, like, you know, basic
⏹️ ▶️ Marco piece of metal was whatever, hundreds of dollars that it
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And how could you, you know, how hard could it be to make a piece of
⏹️ ▶️ John metal? They came with the eight terabyte hard drive, which was like, I suspected that one immediately too. I’m like, I didn’t pick this eight terabyte hard
⏹️ ▶️ John drive. I hate when I don’t pick the hard drive mechanism. I picked the other one, which is a Western Digital Rev, but I didn’t pick whatever the hell this Toshiba
⏹️ ▶️ John thing is in here. So I immediately suspected that. So I was so relieved that I found the problem, but annoyed because I’m like, oh, what
⏹️ ▶️ John am I gonna do now? Because, you know, again, it’s like, you know, well, 12 terabytes
⏹️ ▶️ John of storage. I can’t replace that with an SSD. I really need to have the spinning disk. So I’m like, okay, well, we’ll just set this aside. I went
⏹️ ▶️ John off and I did some other things. I did a driving lesson with my son or whatever, and then like had dinner
⏹️ ▶️ John and then I resumed it. I’m like, okay, well now I’m gonna resume messing with this. What I really wanna know now
⏹️ ▶️ John is which hard drive is the culprit, right? So again, we begin
⏹️ ▶️ John the procedure and there are multiple combinations here. You would think the only combination is plug in one hard drive,
⏹️ ▶️ John test it, and if it doesn’t work, it’s the other hard drive, right? But there are more combinations than that, because remember there are three connectors.
⏹️ ▶️ John Maybe it’s just having the power connector connected that does it, right? And I made some mistakes where I disconnected
⏹️ ▶️ John one drive, but I didn’t disconnect the cable at both ends. So technically that drive was still connected to power
⏹️ ▶️ John even though the data wasn’t connected. So multiply by another like three or four or five
⏹️ ▶️ John or six opening and closing and attempting to sleep things. And every time I did it, connect drive one, connect drive two,
⏹️ ▶️ John oh, I forgot, that first drive one test was invalid because drive two was still connected to power. Disconnect both
⏹️ ▶️ John drives, but still have the power connected and doing all these different combinations and every single one of them I put it to sleep. It doesn’t wake up
⏹️ ▶️ John right and I’m like well, I Guess you know I like
⏹️ ▶️ John maybe it’s just if either of the drives connected. It’s bad. Maybe my motherboard is bad Maybe the
⏹️ ▶️ John SATA thing is bad and by the way Yes I ran Apple’s hardware test which seems much wimpier than it used to be like it didn’t take a long time
⏹️ ▶️ John to run I’m like Please check all my RAM do all my stuff like this hardware test should take forever However, it was disturbingly
⏹️ ▶️ John quick to run Apple’s hardware test. Anyway, I did all that testing, I’m like, no. In every single
⏹️ ▶️ John one of these scenarios, if I have that thing connected in any way, the thing doesn’t wake from sleep.
⏹️ ▶️ John But then I get the little itch and I’m like, wait a second. And so I take
⏹️ ▶️ John the thing and I unplug all the cables from it and I try it, put it to sleep, try to wake it up, it
⏹️ ▶️ John doesn’t wake up. I was like, but that was the thing that worked! Disconnecting everything is the thing that
⏹️ ▶️ John worked! And then I realized, because I knew this was the case because I had a procedure for
⏹️ ▶️ John putting it to sleep, which was put it to sleep and then wait a full minute after putting it to sleep
⏹️ ▶️ John before attempting to wake it. Because sometimes when you put it to sleep, it takes a little while to actually go into sleep depending on
⏹️ ▶️ John what’s going on. And you used to be able to gauge that by, you can gauge it by the fans turning off. This made me
⏹️ ▶️ John appreciate slash not appreciate how quiet these fans are, because I’d have to put my ear
⏹️ ▶️ John up to the thing to make sure I heard when the fans spun down. What I think is that time
⏹️ ▶️ John I had the thing in where it woke from sleep, I had not waited for it to fully go to sleep. And so what I
⏹️ ▶️ John was doing is not actually testing the problem. Because if you hit the spacebar or the mouse button before it really goes to sleep, the
⏹️ ▶️ John screen turns back on and it’s fine because it never got to the sleep phase, right? And I guess I just didn’t
⏹️ ▶️ John give it the full minute or maybe the air conditioning was on and I thought the fans had spun down but they hadn’t. But anyway,
⏹️ ▶️ John now I’m back to zero after an entire day of this. back to zero because I’m like no totally disconnecting
⏹️ ▶️ John the hard drives also doesn’t let it wake from sleep. So I you know at
⏹️ ▶️ John this point I took I took the entire hard drive chassis thing with the hard drives and the Bent piece metal just out
⏹️ ▶️ John of the machine. I put it over there. Now now I’m looking at other hardware I’m like all right hardware
⏹️ ▶️ John what’s what’s the problem here you know hardware test says it’s nothing I have two GPUs
⏹️ ▶️ John in this thing I have my big fancy 5700, whatever it is, W5700 XT,
⏹️ ▶️ John and then I have the crappy 580X that came with it. I’m like, I don’t use that 580X, it’s just in
⏹️ ▶️ John there on the off chance that some program can use more than one GPU, like it’s in there for computer
⏹️ ▶️ John purposes, but otherwise nothing is connected to it. Let me get that out. So I take out the GPU that
⏹️ ▶️ John I’m not using, right? So I’m slowly stripping this machine down to basically closer and closer to stock
⏹️ ▶️ John configuration, where it’s just an Apple monitor, an Apple mouse, an Apple keyboard, Apple RAM that came with
⏹️ ▶️ John it, the internal Apple SSD, and an Apple video card, which is not the one that it came with, but it
⏹️ ▶️ John is one of the built-order options now, and everything’s all Apple. Put the computer to sleep,
⏹️ ▶️ John try to wake it up, doesn’t wake from sleep. And again, every test comes back normal.
⏹️ ▶️ John I repeated SMC resets and did NVRAM and just did everything that
⏹️ ▶️ John I could think of. And I’m like, this has to be hardware, right? Then I’m starting to get desperate now, and I’m like, all right, I need some
⏹️ ▶️ John more data. let me boot into Windows and see if Windows can sleep and wake
⏹️ ▶️ John up. Oh God, you’re getting
⏹️ ▶️ Marco desperate. Yeah, did Windows ever sleep and wake up
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John properly? On my
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John yes, Windows
⏹️ ▶️ John would properly sleep and wake up. And I spend time in Windows, I play Destiny in Windows, like, you know, that’s the whole reason I have it. Like,
⏹️ ▶️ John I’m, you know, I’ve explored the world of Windows treatment of HDR, which is extremely
⏹️ ▶️ John right? But, you know, for the most part it works. But I know sleep and wake works because like the default Windows settings are
⏹️ ▶️ John to go to sleep, so, and you know, it works, right? So I boot into Windows, I reconnect my one external
⏹️ ▶️ John drive that has Windows on it, I boot into Windows, I put the thing to sleep, I wait
⏹️ ▶️ John for the fan to spin down and for it to go to fully to sleep, hit the space bar, doesn’t wake up. Again, each
⏹️ ▶️ John time, by the way, I say that I’m doing this, like, oh, what if it’s just your screen? What if your screen’s just not waking up? Every time I was
⏹️ ▶️ John also testing SSH and ping, and it totally was unresponsive. Harder to do with Windows, because I
⏹️ ▶️ John don’t know what the networking situation is, but bottom
⏹️ ▶️ John not wake up in Windows at all. I’m like, all right, doesn’t wake up in Windows. Doesn’t wake up in
⏹️ ▶️ John Catalina, Big Sur, Windows. I’ve removed every single piece of hardware. All my hardware tests
⏹️ ▶️ John tell me everything is fine. What the hell is wrong with this computer? And the reason I’m pursuing this like a madman
⏹️ ▶️ John is like waking from sleep is an important part of my computing life. Like
⏹️ ▶️ John I never shut down my computer. The only time I reboot it is for OS updates. What I do is when I’m done using
⏹️ ▶️ John it, I put it to sleep. And then in the night while I’m sleeping, it wakes up and does a bunch of backup stuff and then it goes back to sleep.
⏹️ ▶️ John And so the next morning when I wake up, my computer is asleep. And when I wanna go use it, I sit down in front of
⏹️ ▶️ John it, I hit the space bar or click the mouse button, and it wakes up. That’s how I use my computer. If my computer does not wake
⏹️ ▶️ John from sleep, it’s not like it’s useless to me, but it’s pretty close. I need the computer to wake from
⏹️ ▶️ John sleep. That’s why I’m pursuing this, because there is no workaround, there’s no viable workaround. This computer needs to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And I would love to make fun of you for using a desktop computer
⏹️ ▶️ Marco this way, But the reality is, waking from sleep is an
⏹️ ▶️ Marco advertised and supported feature of this platform. And so regardless of whether you
⏹️ ▶️ Marco should want to do this or not, which I won’t argue with you today.
⏹️ ▶️ John shut down when they’re done using a computer? What is this,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the 80s? No, just walk away. Yeah, maybe turn the monitor off and that’s
⏹️ ▶️ John it. The Mac Pro is, you don’t understand how much heat this thing generates and it’s not winter. Like I
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey cannot have this
⏹️ ▶️ John thing generate. I do not have central air conditioning. It’s a very small room, this thing needs to be asleep.
⏹️ ▶️ John And even in the winter, like, in the winter, it could serve as a space heater and
⏹️ ▶️ John then it could be on all the time, but I don’t wanna just wear the fans all day long, just spinning all the time. I didn’t think I used the computer for 10
⏹️ ▶️ John years. Like, when I’m not using it, it should be asleep. But yeah, anyway, it has to work, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John And I’m getting really close right now, because what I’m trying to avoid is like, I’m already thinking about,
⏹️ ▶️ John how would I bring this to an Apple store, right? You know, I’ve brought many large things to the Apple store So I’m
⏹️ ▶️ John like, oh, that Mac Pro box is so beautiful. And my luggage carrier dolly that I usually
⏹️ ▶️ John use to transport my, remember my old 27 inch Apple, whatever, LED display
⏹️ ▶️ John went to the Apple store. I transported that, but it did beat up the box, and I don’t
⏹️ ▶️ John wanna have to get the box down and put it back in. I don’t wanna let people in an Apple store
⏹️ ▶️ John touch my Mac Pro, then I’m not even gonna know what it is. We don’t even have one in our local Apple stores, and they’re
⏹️ ▶️ John just gonna scratch it up. but I’m like, oh, but, you know, maybe, like maybe they
⏹️ ▶️ John can figure out what it is because they have way better hardware diagnostics and it’s like the, some controller chip is
⏹️ ▶️ John not working right or, you know, like, oh, I just, I’m already thinking about that and I’m dreading it because I’m like,
⏹️ ▶️ John I’m running out of things to change or remove or do. The only thing I have left is
⏹️ ▶️ John my new video card versus the crappy one that it came with, right? And that was gonna be my next move to
⏹️ ▶️ John my completely cored out computer was to, you know, do the final revert to stock, take
⏹️ ▶️ John out my upgraded video card and put in the one that it shipped with, even though they’re both Apple video cards and
⏹️ ▶️ John see if that makes any difference. Cause like maybe the video card I got, it’s gone bad or something. I don’t know. I’m just looking for
⏹️ ▶️ John something in hardware. But before I did that move, I had somewhat of a
⏹️ ▶️ John revelation. Do you have you two of you figured out based on all my weird hints and everything, what this might
⏹️ ▶️ Marco nothing. One thing I’m considering is bridge OS being a potential
⏹️ ▶️ Marco culprit. This is like the thing that runs the T2, basically. Because this is a subsystem that would be operational
⏹️ ▶️ Marco on some level, whether it’s running Windows or Mac OS,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco because it operates so many of the critical subsystems of the computer. So the only thing I think of is like
⏹️ ▶️ Marco something going weird with Bridge OS.
⏹️ ▶️ John That’s exactly what I was thinking, because I have a T2 in this computer, which
⏹️ ▶️ John is hardware. But also, it runs software.
⏹️ ▶️ John And I don’t actually know this for a fact, but I’ll just tell you the, tell you what I experimentally
⏹️ ▶️ John determined, right? So it’s my understanding that when you do an
⏹️ ▶️ John operating system update to macOS, one of the things that can happen during an OS update
⏹️ ▶️ John is that BridgeOS can be updated, that the software that runs on the T2 can be updated. And that makes sense to me
⏹️ ▶️ John because, you know, BridgeOS is software and it needs to be updated as well. And I can imagine
⏹️ ▶️ John those updates coinciding with macOS updates. Getting back to my earlier thing of thinking about, what have
⏹️ ▶️ John I changed recently, right, to suddenly make my Mac not awake from sleep?
⏹️ ▶️ John What immediately sprang to mind was 10.15.6, but like I said, that’s not it, because I’ve moved into Big Sur and still have the problem.
⏹️ ▶️ John What else have I changed recently? Big Sur Beta 5 came out recently,
⏹️ ▶️ John and I upgraded from Big Sur Beta 4 to Big Sur Beta 5 on the external
⏹️ ▶️ John drive in this Mac. And a lot of the reason I wasn’t thinking about it I was like, well, I disconnected it though. And I don’t actually
⏹️ ▶️ John know if 1015.6 or Big Sur Beta 5 are responsible
⏹️ ▶️ John or if either one of them did a bridge OS update. Then I’m like, okay, before
⏹️ ▶️ John I try to take out that big video card, which is kind of a pain to get it now because it’s really tall and
⏹️ ▶️ John Anyway, let me try essentially reinstalling
⏹️ ▶️ John the OS on the T2, right? So I had to look up how to do this because I haven’t had a Mac with a T2 before and it’s actually slightly
⏹️ ▶️ John different for all of them. but Apple has really good instructions in doing this. Use the Apple configurator two thing.
⏹️ ▶️ John You connect another Mac to it with, I used the Thunderbolt cable because I never know what the hell cables
⏹️ ▶️ John to use in these USB-C shaped
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco holes. We’re like, let me use the cable that supports
⏹️ ▶️ John all the things, like the highest speed Thunderbolt cable. It might’ve just been USB-C, I don’t even freaking know. You
⏹️ ▶️ John put it into one specific Thunderbolt port. You put your Mac Pro into DFU mode, which is really weird, but
⏹️ ▶️ John that’s what you do. You put your Mac Pro into DFU mode and you have two choices. You can do what Apple calls
⏹️ ▶️ John a revive and a restore. A restore, you do that
⏹️ ▶️ John and you’re just gonna need to wipe everything on your computer. And yes, I have a thousand backups, but I really don’t want
⏹️ ▶️ John to restore from any of them. Partly because I have lots of good backups,
⏹️ ▶️ John but it takes a long
⏹️ ▶️ John time to restore four terabytes. And I had podcasts to do, right? I didn’t, I’m like,
⏹️ ▶️ John I can’t, in fact, the day I was doing this, I had a podcast. it was the special we did for
⏹️ ▶️ John relay. That was the day this was going on. I’m like, I can’t. Even if this succeeds,
⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t have time to do a four terabyte restore for one of my backups, right? So I didn’t even wanna do
⏹️ ▶️ John that. So what I did was revive. And what revive does is in theory, it
⏹️ ▶️ John does something to the T2 to get it back to a working state based on who knows what. But
⏹️ ▶️ John the point is that it doesn’t require you to delete everything on your computer. Because you can imagine if you just erased everything in the
⏹️ ▶️ John T2, then you wouldn’t be able to decrypt your drives anymore or whatever. That’s what I imagine the limitation is. But
⏹️ ▶️ John the restore is complete wipe. So I did revive, right? I did revive
⏹️ ▶️ John and the thing rebooted and it came to the login screen. And that’s what I’ve been doing, by
⏹️ ▶️ John the way, to eliminate, is it some user account? Is it something like that? This is before I tried different OSs, right? But on
⏹️ ▶️ John the login screen on your Mac, there’s a sleep button. So you don’t even need to log in to test sleep. You can just boot right to the login screen and then
⏹️ ▶️ John hit that sleep button and it will go to sleep and then you can try to wake it up, right? You don’t even have to log in to test the problem, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John So it rebooted after the revive, got to the login screen, it hits the sleep button, waited for the fan to spin down,
⏹️ ▶️ John waited for my one minute timer, woke it up, it woke right back up. Like, yes, I figured it out.
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s the T2. God knows what happened to the T2. I don’t know if it was
⏹️ ▶️ John the Big Sur Beta 5. That’s my main culprit just because it’s a beta OS. I don’t know if it was 10, 15, 6. I
⏹️ ▶️ John don’t know if it was something unrelated to either one of those and just something went bad on my T2, who knows? But it woke from
⏹️ ▶️ John sleep and I was like, Sleep, wait a minute, wake. Sleep, wait a minute, wake. I’m like, yes, confirmed.
⏹️ ▶️ John It works, everything’s good here, right? And then I went to log in
⏹️ ▶️ John like, good, I’m just gonna get back
⏹️ ▶️ John normal. And I go to log into my account, I click on my face, and I type in my password, and it
⏹️ ▶️ John does a little head shake thing. It’s like, no, no, that’s not your password. I’m like, no, that’s totally my password. Oh, no.
⏹️ ▶️ John And then I go click on my wife’s face and try to log in with her password. And it goes, no, no, that’s not your password.
⏹️ ▶️ John I’m like, no, that’s
⏹️ ▶️ John And then I go back to the login screen. I’m like, wait a second, what happened to my daughter? Like I normally see all of our faces there,
⏹️ ▶️ John but it was just me, my wife and my son. What happened to my daughter? Where did she go?
⏹️ ▶️ John Like what the hell’s going on with this computer? And like, it really wouldn’t let me log in. And when I
⏹️ ▶️ John tried to log in, like I have, you know the way you can put a hint for your password? Like, and I think I always put a hint
⏹️ ▶️ John there. The hint I always put is go away. Because that
⏹️ ▶️ John to do with my password. It’s trying to give a hint to the person trying to get into my account without knowing a password. My hint to you was go away,
⏹️ ▶️ John right? And it showed me go away. I’m like, all right, well, this is my account. That’s my picture. Those are my
⏹️ ▶️ John names. These are people, but A, where’s my daughter’s account? And B, why can’t I log in?
⏹️ ▶️ John So I, you know, I reboot into recovery mode, which I’d done many times over. And by the way, I left out some steps where I
⏹️ ▶️ John booted into recovery mode, ran disk first aid in every volume. Like I did a whole bunch of the, I left out some of the normal
⏹️ ▶️ John stuff that I did. So, but anyway, I was very familiar with booting into recovery mode. So I boot into recovery mode.
⏹️ ▶️ John And what I’m looking at, like, you know, everything else is removed from the computer. So I’ve just got like my computer
⏹️ ▶️ John and my hard drive’s name are link, right? So I’ve got link and link space hyphen space data, which is the whole, the two volumes
⏹️ ▶️ John that Catalina breaks up your stuff into. And there are actually more volumes than that. There’s the volume that I’m booting into in recovery
⏹️ ▶️ John mode. There’s a recovery volume. There’s a software update volume. We talked about this with the APFS volume roles. There’s
⏹️ ▶️ John actually a whole bunch of volumes there. That’s how I’m able to boot, right? But what I saw was that
⏹️ ▶️ John on this boot into recovery mode, it showed the system volume, which is just called link, the read-only
⏹️ ▶️ John system volume, just called link, was grayed out and unmounted. And then link-data
⏹️ ▶️ John was there, right? And I tried to mount link, and it wouldn’t mount.
⏹️ ▶️ John And I tried to run disk-first data, and it wouldn’t run disk-first data. And it gave me an error message that I looked up in Google, and
⏹️ ▶️ John I saw a bunch of reports of people getting this exact error number, a very long number. I forget what it was,
⏹️ ▶️ John four, two, nine, something, or it was a very long error number, and did a lot of Googling, and they’re like, look, if a drive ever gives
⏹️ ▶️ John you this, it basically means that some record somewhere for that volume
⏹️ ▶️ John is missing and it can’t be mounted without it because the computer doesn’t know where anything is in it. And I’ve never found a way to recover from
⏹️ ▶️ John this. You just have to delete that volume. Right. I’m like, all right, well, but that’s the read only system volume.
⏹️ ▶️ John Like my data is in the other volume and it’s confirmed to be good. And I can run disk first aid on it. And it’s like, yep,
⏹️ ▶️ John there’s your data volume. It’s, you know, however many terabytes, all your stuff is there. I don’t need the read only system
⏹️ ▶️ John volume. I can just delete that volume. I can’t mount it. I can’t do anything with it. I spent a long time banging my head against it,
⏹️ ▶️ John but I’m like, well, but I finally figured out this problem. My T2 is cured. I can sleep and wake from sleep.
⏹️ ▶️ John I just delete this volume, right? And I was, I think it was just anxious to get it over with. If I had thought
⏹️ ▶️ John a little bit more, maybe I would have realized this was not a great idea, but anyway, I deleted the system volume. And really, honestly,
⏹️ ▶️ John I’m not sure what else I could have done because that system volume was completely useless. It was unable to be mounted
⏹️ ▶️ John in any mode, single user mode, anything. It could not be mounted, couldn’t run disk for a second, couldn’t
⏹️ ▶️ John drive to FSCK, it was just, system volume was like, forget it, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John So I deleted the volume. So now I’ve just got one volume called link data. I create a new APS volume
⏹️ ▶️ John called link. I run the installer, and when the installer asks, where do you want
⏹️ ▶️ John me to install? I say, please install on link, which is this new empty volume I made. And the installer dutifully
⏹️ ▶️ John runs. And by the way, I left this out too, I had to reinstall Catalina at one point, or maybe at two points, I had to
⏹️ ▶️ John reinstall Catalina. With no effect, like it didn’t hurt my computer, reinstalling Catalina is fine, and it just
⏹️ ▶️ John didn’t fix the sleep-wake thing, right? That was another thing that I had tried. So I’d been very used to the Catalina installer, so I’m very used to doing
⏹️ ▶️ John this. I picked the link volume, I reinstalled Catalina, it rebooted, and again
⏹️ ▶️ John it gave me a list of users, but with one user missing. I was like, what? What the hell is?
⏹️ ▶️ John Oh no, no, it didn’t give me a list of users, this is a different thing. I can explain that one in a second, I have to go back and explain that,
⏹️ ▶️ John because I think I figured out what that problem was too. But no, what it told me was to create an account on this install.
⏹️ ▶️ John account. Like there’s a bunch of accounts in link data. Why don’t you just use those? And like, well, I don’t know what the hell
⏹️ ▶️ John is going on. So I create an account and I intentionally gave it a different name so I wouldn’t get confused. This is a very important thing when you’re debugging.
⏹️ ▶️ John Like I don’t give volumes the same name. Don’t give user accounts the same name.
⏹️ ▶️ John You always have to know where you are and what you’re dealing with. So I created some temporary downgrade account. I logged into
⏹️ ▶️ John it and I realized what it had done was taken link
⏹️ ▶️ John and made a second volume called link-data with nothing in it and made that new user account in it. So what I had
⏹️ ▶️ John was now, the volumes I had was link with the OS, link-data with the
⏹️ ▶️ John user data that I had just created for this new account, and then another volume called link-data with my actual data in it.
⏹️ ▶️ John Oh my God. So the installer had installed onto link by breaking link into two
⏹️ ▶️ John volumes, both of which were initially empty and then weaving them together. So then I’m like, okay,
⏹️ ▶️ John all right, well, still the data’s all there. I just need to find a way to install the OS
⏹️ ▶️ John and tell it, installer, don’t make yourself a new data volume. Use
⏹️ ▶️ John that data volume. It’s sitting right there. You just need to make the OS volume and tie it to that data volume.
⏹️ ▶️ John Just weave them together. And in my research, and actually a personal email to someone I
⏹️ ▶️ John thought might know the answer to this, the answer I got was, now, obviously, it’s possible to weave together
⏹️ ▶️ John two volumes in that way because the installer does it. But I was not able to determine a way
⏹️ ▶️ John that a user could do it. No command line tools, no secret technique, you know, weird
⏹️ ▶️ John install invocation. It may exist, but I couldn’t find it, right? So now
⏹️ ▶️ John I’ve got this computer with all my data intact, that sleeps and wakes just fine,
⏹️ ▶️ John but I can’t get like my volume back. So you may be thinking at this point, and maybe if you’re Casey, you’re like, well,
⏹️ ▶️ John fine, just I’ll just delete all of it and restore from backup, because I just want to get this over with, right? Yep. But I’m not Casey,
⏹️ ▶️ John and so I didn’t do that, because that would be a mistake. Instead, what I said is like,
⏹️ ▶️ John look, I need another copy of all this data right now. Yes, I know I have
⏹️ ▶️ John a Time Machine backup, a SuperDuper clone, another Time Machine backup on the Synology, and a
⏹️ ▶️ John Backblaze backup, right? And also my photos are on a whole second computer which has its own Backblaze
⏹️ ▶️ John backup, Time Machine backup, and Synology backup. So my photos have three other backups, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John But that’s not enough. So I had to get another hard drive,
⏹️ ▶️ John and I looked around my house. This is where I like looking for cables. I must have another spinning hard drive around here that can hold
⏹️ ▶️ John my volume, right? It’s I don’t fill the full four terabytes. Turns out I fill
⏹️ ▶️ John like two and a half terabytes and the biggest spinning hard drive I have in the house is two.
⏹️ ▶️ John That’s not currently used. So I had to order a hard drive. So I had to order a hard drive and during
⏹️ ▶️ John that time I ordered the hard drive, I did that podcast that we did the relay special.
⏹️ ▶️ John I did a rectifs episode and now I’m doing this episode, right? And the hard drive arrived
⏹️ ▶️ John and I eventually arrived, it arrived today, and I did a backup, a
⏹️ ▶️ John copy of the internal drive, and it took about nine hours to complete.
⏹️ ▶️ John Right, this is just a straight copy from my SSD onto this incredibly slow
⏹️ ▶️ John external spinning disk. So now finally, I have my
⏹️ ▶️ John final redundant copy of that other hard drive,
⏹️ ▶️ John right? And what I’ve been booted into here during this podcast and Erectives
⏹️ ▶️ John is I’m booted into that new system with that new weird user that has nothing in it. And I just
⏹️ ▶️ John installed Skype, Audio Hijack and all that other stuff into there. So that’s what I’ve been podcasting
⏹️ ▶️ John from. And the reason I haven’t attempted to restore, like I could have attempted to restore today after the nine hour thing, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John But I was like, that’s gonna take a long time. And if it screws up, I don’t wanna screw up this computer. So what I’m
⏹️ ▶️ John waiting for is a gap in my podcasting schedule to try my best
⏹️ ▶️ John guess at what I can do besides restore, because I still don’t want to do a restore. Like I know I have all this stuff, but I still
⏹️ ▶️ John don’t want to restore. What I want to do is delete all the volumes except linked data, and then point the installer
⏹️ ▶️ John at linked data, and say, installer, install the OS on this volume. And
⏹️ ▶️ John I want it to crack linked data in half and make an OS volume of it, because if you point the Catalina installer to any volume,
⏹️ ▶️ John any like just single volume that has a bunch of users and applications, and like
⏹️ ▶️ John a pre-Catalina OS, that’s when it does the weaving. That’s when it says, okay, I’ll make a
⏹️ ▶️ John new empty volume, install the read-only system, and weave it together with that one using these firm links, right? That’s when it
⏹️ ▶️ John does the connection. Now, I don’t have a complete pre-Catalina volume, but I do have
⏹️ ▶️ John a Catalina volume that has user accounts and all this other stuff, application folder, and it actually has
⏹️ ▶️ John a slash system quote-unquote folder that is the old firm link to the old thing.
⏹️ ▶️ John But the reason I didn’t wanna do that until I had all their backup because like, what if that screws up? What if I point the Catalina
⏹️ ▶️ John installer at my data volume and it says, oh, just empty this volume out and erase it, or if it just hoses
⏹️ ▶️ John it entirely or whatever. It is a valid option in the installer. The installer does give you the choice if you can
⏹️ ▶️ John select a linked data to install onto. It gave me that choice before, right? But I’m afraid that’s gonna
⏹️ ▶️ John destroy everything. Now finally, after this podcast concludes, probably tomorrow or the next day,
⏹️ ▶️ John I will try to resurrect my computer, resurrect the data on my computer
⏹️ ▶️ John before I have to do the next podcast, which I think is like Sunday or something, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John So that’s my plan. That is my tale of woe. It could have gone much worse, but it certainly could have
⏹️ ▶️ John gone better. I spent a lot of time on this, and it’s not particularly satisfying to have this
⏹️ ▶️ John conclusion where it was the T2 basically, but why?
⏹️ ▶️ John Why was it the T2? I like the beta five, the Big Sur beta five theory. Unfortunately,
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s so vague that I can’t even file a feedback on it and say, hey, I have a vague notion
⏹️ ▶️ John that perhaps upgrading to Big Sur Beta 5 hosed the T2 such that my Mac Pro never woke from sleep.
⏹️ ▶️ John And by the way, every time I hard rebooted it and it woke from sleep, it offered to send a report to Apple. But the report
⏹️ ▶️ John is just like a boilerplate, like a failure to wake from sleep. I’m like, yes, that is what happened,
⏹️ ▶️ John but there’s no stack trace, or like there is a stack trace, but there’s a message at the top that says, please disregard the stack trace, it’s meaningless,
⏹️ ▶️ John right? Because if you don’t wake from sleep, There’s just nothing like, maybe it dumped something
⏹️ ▶️ John from NVR, I’m not sure. But anyway, I sent 1,000 of those reports to Apple during the thing, but I don’t have enough to
⏹️ ▶️ John send a feedback or anything like that. By the way, the missing child in the user thing, apparently,
⏹️ ▶️ John at some point, it was able to boot from an installed OS but
⏹️ ▶️ John not able to see the data volume. And when
⏹️ ▶️ John you do that, the installed OS has a memory of the user accounts that have been logged into recently,
⏹️ ▶️ John apparently, but when you try to log into them, if it can’t actually find the data for it,
⏹️ ▶️ John it says wrong password, right? So like, the OS volume says, yeah, you’ve
⏹️ ▶️ John logged into these three accounts in the last year or something. So I’ll show these little faces, and you can click
⏹️ ▶️ John on them and enter a password. When I go to validate the password, apparently at that point, it needs to like see the user’s home
⏹️ ▶️ John directory or something, and that volume just wasn’t mounted at all. Why wasn’t it mounted?
⏹️ ▶️ John And is it, I think my daughter didn’t appear just because her account hasn’t been logged into on my computer since
⏹️ ▶️ John forever, which makes sense to me, because she never uses this computer and occasionally I log into my son’s to do something, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John But that was the mystery of the missing account, and that was also the mystery of the not accepting
⏹️ ▶️ John my password, was that the data volume was somehow unmounted or unreachable at that point.
⏹️ ▶️ John Again, I have no idea why, because the data volume is the volume that’s fine and has all the data on it,
⏹️ ▶️ John as far as I’m aware. So more updates on this next week.
⏹️ ▶️ John I’ll tell you whether reinstalling the OS onto the data volume worked. I’ll tell you whether I had to restore from backup,
⏹️ ▶️ John and then I’ll tell you exactly how many hours it took to restore from backup, because I can imagine it’s gonna take longer than nine.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco My current bet is you’re gonna end up with a link data data volume, and it will still
⏹️ ▶️ Marco have some kind of weirdness.
⏹️ ▶️ John I mean, this is the thing, by the way, these names, they don’t mean anything. Remember I had the link data, two link data, you can rename it, it’s
⏹️ ▶️ John the MAC. You can rename the volumes whatever you want. It doesn’t get confused. volumes have identifiers that are unique that are under
⏹️ ▶️ John the covers that you never see. You can rename your volumes to whatever you want, which is why I always recommend if you’re doing some stuff,
⏹️ ▶️ John even if you end up, I ended up with two linked data volumes, I immediately renamed the new one it created
⏹️ ▶️ John to be something different, like new data or whatever, so I could always tell them apart because it’s so dangerous when you have
⏹️ ▶️ John volumes that are named the same that you’re gonna screw something up. But yeah, in this situation, is
⏹️ ▶️ John it hardware or software? And I was attacking it on both fronts. Hardware, I’m just gonna
⏹️ ▶️ John remove every piece of hardware from the thing and run hardware tests. Software, let me try it in Windows. Let me try it in Big Sur. Let me try it in Catalina.
⏹️ ▶️ John The thing that got me was, it’s hardware and software. It’s the T2, with software that
⏹️ ▶️ John you never think about but totally exists, but it’s also hardware.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I don’t think it’s unreasonable if, you know, Beta 5 did
⏹️ ▶️ Casey a new firmware install on the T2 and that was somehow not entirely
⏹️ ▶️ Casey backwards compatible with Catalina. Like I, I,
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey I, but it didn’t wake in big Sur either, but yeah, it could have just been a bug.
⏹️ ▶️ John Could have just been a big Sur bug, but I, you know, and that’s why it’s my biggest culprit. Cause like, yeah,
⏹️ ▶️ John for maybe the, maybe Big Sur Beta 5 had a bug that caused Mac Pros not to wake from sleep, but I could not find any report from it
⏹️ ▶️ John anywhere. And it doesn’t surprise me because how many people have Mac Pros and how many people have Mac Pros and are installing
⏹️ ▶️ John Big Sur Beta 5? It’s gotta be a small group. And that’s why I think maybe it’s just something that was hosed in my T2
⏹️ ▶️ John or like, maybe it really was 10, 15, 6. I just don’t know. All I have is the experimental
⏹️ ▶️ John results, doing a revive. And why the hell did doing a revive hose my OS volume?
⏹️ ▶️ John Like, I don’t think that was an expected result of doing a revive. The whole point of doing a revive is it’s not
⏹️ ▶️ John supposed to hose all your data. And it didn’t hose my data, but it made my system volume completely unmountable.
⏹️ ▶️ John Forget about unbootable, unmountable. So there are many mysteries here. The only, you
⏹️ ▶️ John know, and that, you know, and I, right now I have on my desk right out in front of me,
⏹️ ▶️ John the guts of my computer. I have my GPU here, I have a bunch of those little brackets that hold the thing in that I gave up and putting
⏹️ ▶️ John back ages ago. I’ve got my big hard drive sitting over there. I’ve got a big piece of tape over
⏹️ ▶️ John there. I’ve got my new hard drive, I’ve got a bunch of cables. It’s a mess in this place. I can’t wait to
⏹️ ▶️ John reassemble this all, but first I have to tackle the software part of it. So that’s the problem with having big,
⏹️ ▶️ John large volumes of data. Restoring from backup, even a local backup takes forever.
⏹️ ▶️ John And just I have to find a time in my life when I can set that off and have enough
⏹️ ▶️ John time for it to finish. I did do, when we did our member podcast, I did that from a laptop.
⏹️ ▶️ John So I successfully podcasted from a laptop and the world didn’t end, but I certainly didn’t like it.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I mean, one could argue the world is kind of ending in lots of different small ways and hopefully they aren’t the fault of you podcasting on
⏹️ ▶️ John But it did better recording a podcast than apparently Casey’s computer can ever do. I was gonna say that I had inherited
⏹️ ▶️ John Casey’s, like, Casey’s hardware curse, but I don’t know. I feel like this is just,
⏹️ ▶️ John assuming my guess about what it was, this is just a really bad
⏹️ ▶️ John situation of like, hey, beta software has bugs. And I think I’ve said this on past shows, back before all this
⏹️ ▶️ John happened, Big Sur has been the hardest experience I’ve ever had
⏹️ ▶️ John running software update on beta OSs. And I’ve obviously run software update on beta OSs since 10.0, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t know what it is about Big Sur. Is it because of the ARM transition? Is it because of like a code fork merge
⏹️ ▶️ John between the ARM branch and the regular branch or whatever, like every single version of Big Sur, like I’d
⏹️ ▶️ John install it on either my DTK or my Mac Pro, and then someone would say, hey, there’s
⏹️ ▶️ John a new beta of Big Sur out, and I’d go to software update, and it would be this incredible battle to get the frickin’
⏹️ ▶️ John thing to install. You wouldn’t just click software update and update, it’d be like, oh, update failed, download failed, can’t install, I don’t
⏹️ ▶️ John see an update, and it was like, oh, reinstall the beta profile, or try this, or use the command line tool, the command line is
⏹️ ▶️ John failing. Some of it was user error, where I had like the boot security different or whatever, but even on the DTK
⏹️ ▶️ John where none of that applies. I’d always have to be looking for tweets and Googling and say, how do you get the,
⏹️ ▶️ John every single update has been like pulling teeth, including beta five. I had to take 20 different runs at it to get the
⏹️ ▶️ John thing to download and turn content caching so the other thing can get it because it could fail to download it from the, I don’t know
⏹️ ▶️ John what the hell Big Sur’s problem is. Big Sur running it has been fine. Like, I don’t see lots of huge
⏹️ ▶️ John bugs other than cosmetic stuff inside the OS, but actually getting software update to run has been
⏹️ ▶️ John killing me. It’s probably because they replaced software update in Big Sur with the mobile update that they use in iOS
⏹️ ▶️ John for obvious reasons. But yeah, that’s super buggy. So
⏹️ ▶️ John needless to say, I will no longer be applying, installing betas of Big Sur on my Mac Pro after this.
⏹️ ▶️ John I’ll still do it on the DDK, that can get hosed fine. But as far as I’m concerned, my Mac Pro is done with Big Sur
⏹️ ▶️ John until official release. And even then, I’m gonna make like a hodgillion backups before I install
⏹️ ▶️ John Big Sur on it. Because now I am terrified of a similar thing happening again.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey That was an adventure.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, I never want to open up this computer again. It’s just so so
⏹️ ▶️ John stressful because it’s like you know in those Bankai scenes where they’re like trying to lift like the diamonds out of the thing
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco hitting the lasers or Shutting up
⏹️ ▶️ John things like every time I lift that lid off like it’s not it’s there’s
⏹️ ▶️ John You have to do it perfectly straight and smoothly and you don’t want to bang these pieces of metal against each other I’ve heard some horror stories
⏹️ ▶️ John of people who picked a little handle up and twist it and like there’s some There’s some like padding stuff in there that can get all bunched
⏹️ ▶️ John up and it’s just… I’m really, I really don’t, you know. I’m glad
⏹️ ▶️ John I hopefully will only have to open it up and close it one more time after I get this sorted out, but
⏹️ ▶️ John over my limit. I remember when I first got it I opened and closed it two or three times and I’m like good, I’ll never be doing that again. And now I’ve opened and closed it like 50 times.