406: A Bomb on Your Home Screen25 Nov 2020
Contact de-duping, rearranging apps, how the M1 architecture could scale to higher-end Macs, and reflections on a decade of podcasting.
- Fast resolution switching on M1 Macs
- Mac-optimized TensorFlow 2.4 fork makes things fly
- M1 Mac 8K render test
- Running iOS apps with
- CrossOver runs Windows apps/games on M1 Macs — including 32-bit games!
- iOS 14.3 no longer opens the shortcuts app when launching apps from custom icons
- Widgetsmith (App Store link)
- Apple Configurator
- GitHub’s ICE relationship is indirect
- De-duplicating Contacts
Look for Duplicates...
- It’s been ≈10 years since Build & Analyze #1. What’s changed?
- Scaling the M1 architecture to higher-end machines
- Robot or Not: Cache edition (via Chris Cioffi)
- Are we concerned about the longevity of M1 chips? (via Colin Devroe)
- Do we believe in cable management? (via Nick)
- Post-show: Marco’s ruined backpack
- Purple: Experience The Purple Grid and you’ll sleep like never before. Get 10% off any order of $200 or more with code atp10.
- Flatfile: The elegant import button for your web app. Give your users the import experience you always dreamed of, but never had time to build.
- Hello Fresh: America’s #1 meal kit. Get $90 off including free shipping with code atp90.
Become a member for ad-free episodes and our early-release, unedited “bootleg” feed!
- Sponsor: HelloFresh (code atp90)
- Shortcuts ❤️ custom app icons
- Rearranging app icons 🖼️
- GitHub + ??? + ICE
- Contact de-duping
- Sponsor: Flatfile
- 10 years of podcasting
- Sponsor: Purple (code atp10)
- Scaling the M1
- #askatp: M1 longevity
- #askatp: Cable management
- Ending theme
- The backpack story
- Walnut ruins everything
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I’m kind of interested in the mini review, except I am extremely, I am extremely not interested
⏹️ ▶️ Casey in your mini review because I don’t want to know.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Oh, my iPhone mini?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Mm hmm. I don’t want to know.
⏹️ ▶️ John So let me tell you. I don’t want to know. I stopped. I stopped the show rundown right
⏹️ ▶️ John after we got that thing. But Marco can feel free to talk about it if he wants during the topic section,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Fast resolution switching on M1 Macs. Gokin Avkarogulari
⏹️ ▶️ Casey writes, and I believe this individual is an Apple engineer, writes, I was waiting for this.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Our display pipes are many years ahead of the industry, and this is just one example of that. From contrast to accessibility
⏹️ ▶️ Casey to color management, many teams at Apple, including my display driver team, put so much effort to it. Glad
⏹️ ▶️ Casey to see it makes a difference. Yeah, it does make a difference because I
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John finally yeah
⏹️ ▶️ Casey well So I finally saw a demo and somebody tweeted this and we’ll put a link in the show notes and they have
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I guess an older An old and busted MacBook Pro on one side.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco They have the current top-of-the-line MacBook Pro the 16-inch Yes,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey yep, and then which is obviously old and busted. Yeah, and then the on the left-hand side They have a brand
⏹️ ▶️ Casey new MacBook Pro, which is the 13-inch and you know when Marco I think was Marco me was
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John it’s always John.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey No, no, it’s always John. That’s the rules, remember? And so when John said,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey when John Marco said, when John Raffio said that the resolution switching was instant,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I conceptually understood the words that were being said,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey but seeing it visually is a whole nother thing. Like this tweet,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey it’s so ridiculous how fast this is. I just cannot believe my eyes.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s one of those things that like, you know, with computers, we’ve, we’ve used computers for a long time now.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And it’s just one of those things that always has taken a few seconds. It just, it’s a thing that when you change the resolution
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of your screen, it goes blank for a few seconds and things kind of like
⏹️ ▶️ Marco pop in kind of ungracefully. And you know, a few seconds later, everything is kind of basically where it should be.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And when you go from something that takes a few seconds and you see the transition and it’s ungraceful like that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to something that literally is like instant, you just like, boom it’s just like click click click boom it’s
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s shocking like it and it’s again this is not something that they had to optimize this is not something
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that needed to be done but it’s just so damn delightful to see it and it’s something
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that you don’t see very often in computing where something that previously used to take a good amount of time
⏹️ ▶️ Marco all of a sudden takes no time and again like this most people don’t change resolutions that often
⏹️ ▶️ Marco although many people do plug in monitors and unplug monitors frequently and from what
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I hear I haven’t been able to test this yet, but from what I hear, that is similarly fast now. So
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I am just so happy that this kind of stuff is being worked on and that we can still have
⏹️ ▶️ Marco things in modern computing that make us go, whoa, like that really surprise us.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Cause that doesn’t happen that often anymore cause stuff is really good pretty much everywhere. So like, you know, to get one of those
⏹️ ▶️ Marco whoa moments is rare and it’s just so incredibly delightful when
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you see one and this is one of those times.
⏹️ ▶️ John I guess one of the benefits of the iOS project, you know, having started for the phone
⏹️ ▶️ John and of course they started from Mac OS X, but they had to rip like tons of stuff out to just get it to fit
⏹️ ▶️ John into the phone and to get it to be fast enough on that very slow phone hardware. And that sort of gave them
⏹️ ▶️ John a chance to tear everything down to the studs, so to speak, and to build back up from
⏹️ ▶️ John there without concern for legacy because they totally controlled the hardware and the iOS didn’t need to run
⏹️ ▶️ John anywhere except for on, you know, this phone hardware. And so that’s the perfect opportunity
⏹️ ▶️ John over the course of the next 10, 15 years to reconsider things like the display driver stack, which
⏹️ ▶️ John like Marco said, they weren’t broken. There was nothing wrong with them. They worked fine. Like their main job is to be
⏹️ ▶️ John reliable and do the things we want them to do. They supported retina.
⏹️ ▶️ John You could change resolution. It did all the things that you would expect it to do.
⏹️ ▶️ John But if you have the opportunity to sort of rebuild that from nothing, starting from
⏹️ ▶️ John very simple display driving on the original iPhone up till today,
⏹️ ▶️ John you can end up building a display driver system, especially with the move to metal, not
⏹️ ▶️ John having to support OpenGL, not having to support other people’s graphics drivers. If they control the hardware and the software stack, it’s an opportunity
⏹️ ▶️ John to do something better. And I don’t think there was huge pressure from the outside saying you really need to make
⏹️ ▶️ John resolution switching faster. I think it is just a side effect of redoing the
⏹️ ▶️ John display driver stack to be high performance in all ways. And one of the benefits you get basically for free for doing
⏹️ ▶️ John a good job is, oh, guess what? Resolution change, that’s lightning fast now too.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Oh, it’s extremely, extremely impressive and I’m only seeing it on video. It’s very cool. And to your point, Marco, Sylvain
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Filteau writes, you mentioned how fast it is to change resolution. It is exactly as fast plugging in an external
⏹️ ▶️ Casey display like the ultra fine 5K. Very cool stuff. Tell me John about TensorFlow
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and Forks and M1 Max and so on.
⏹️ ▶️ John So, you know, one of the things that Apple talked about in their presentation about the M1 Macs, they showed the system
⏹️ ▶️ John on a chip, and we’ve talked about this in the past, how much of the system on a chip is dedicated to machine learning stuff.
⏹️ ▶️ John Obviously, the benefit that Apple touted was, oh, we’ll take our cruddy 720p camera and we’ll make
⏹️ ▶️ John those pictures look a little bit better. Although that may be the image signal processor, not the neural engine. But anyway, that’s splitting
⏹️ ▶️ John hairs. The point is, there’s hardware on the M1, just like there is on all of the iPhone and iPad
⏹️ ▶️ John system on a chips, that is dedicated to doing specific tasks very well.
⏹️ ▶️ John And on the Mac, it’s like, okay, that’s great. The OS uses it for certain things, but otherwise it’s just sitting there
⏹️ ▶️ John not being used until someone updates their software for it. So this is an announcement that, I used to think it was
⏹️ ▶️ John Apple’s fork of TensorFlow, which is a machine learning thing of some stripe. The new version
⏹️ ▶️ John optimized for the M1-based Macs has seven times faster performance.
⏹️ ▶️ John And how does it get seven times faster performance? It’s not in this case, because the M1 is faster in CPU
⏹️ ▶️ John than any other Mac, but it’s not seven times faster. It’s getting seven times faster because it’s using the machine
⏹️ ▶️ John learning hardware that’s on the chip. The previous version didn’t because there was none, right? On the Intel chips, there was
⏹️ ▶️ John nothing, right? And now it’s using that machine learning stuff that’s on there, huge speed boost. So
⏹️ ▶️ John this is the type of sort of nonlinear increases you get for actually taking advantage
⏹️ ▶️ John of the hardware that they put on the system on chips for, you know, for phones, for iPads, and now the Mac has
⏹️ ▶️ John them too. And, you know, the sooner Mac developers pick up that, the better it’s gonna make their applications
⏹️ ▶️ John look. I think, I don’t remember if, what’s the app that has like that super resolution
⏹️ ▶️ John plugin, is it Pixelmator? Yeah. Yeah, I think that one is also now taking
⏹️ ▶️ John advantage of the neural engine and stuff like
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco it. It is, yes. Yeah,
⏹️ ▶️ John so those are, and there was someone that did a benchmark of those things too showing like, you know, if you do it on the CPU,
⏹️ ▶️ John like it’s still faster because the CPU is faster, but if you don’t do it on the CPU but instead do it on
⏹️ ▶️ John dedicated hardware, it’s a lot faster. So those things are great and probably more power efficient as well. So
⏹️ ▶️ John that’s exciting. If not just like, oh, we recompiled it for our Macs. We didn’t
⏹️ ▶️ John just recompile it. We wrote to use whatever new set of APIs targets the new hardware. That makes it way faster.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, that is extremely impressive. Then tell me about 8K rendering, if you please.
⏹️ ▶️ John think I did my own, you know, McGurk effect, green needle,
⏹️ ▶️ John Fortnite, whatever thing in the last episode. During the section where we were talking
⏹️ ▶️ John about various people’s impressive benchmarks of the M1 base Macs. One of the
⏹️ ▶️ John examples was a 8K video render test. And the thing was that,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, the M1 base Mac rendered it and it
⏹️ ▶️ John was competing with the Intel version and the Intel version couldn’t do it without draining its battery, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John And what was written in the notes and what I could swear I tried to say twice on the podcast was
⏹️ ▶️ John the percentage that the M1 base Mac depleted its battery.
⏹️ ▶️ John And I listened back to the show and I realized twice I said what sounded like the M1 Mac used 70%
⏹️ ▶️ John of its battery and the Intel Mac drained its battery before completing the task.
⏹️ ▶️ John But what I was trying to say was the M1 Mac depleted 17% of its battery. Two
⏹️ ▶️ John more than 15. The number after 16.
⏹️ ▶️ John So the M1 base Mac not only did it faster, but it depleted only 17% of its battery,
⏹️ ▶️ John having 83% remaining. And the non-M1
⏹️ ▶️ John base Mac, the Intel base Mac, could not complete the task on a single charge. So I just
⏹️ ▶️ John wanted to clarify. My mouth said what sounded like seven zero, but
⏹️ ▶️ John it is not, it was one seven.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey That is absolutely bananas. We’re gonna talk more about these new Macs, and
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I don’t want to. I might quit the show because I like, I really like my MacBook Pro that I
⏹️ ▶️ Casey have from June of this year. It doesn’t feel like it’s a 40 year old
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John way everyone is talking about this M1 Max,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I feel like this is barely better than the 8088 I had in my bedroom when I was like 10 years old, when it was already,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey you know, a way too old computer. My word. All right, tell me about running iOS apps with just
⏹️ ▶️ Casey the IPA files, please. Yeah.
⏹️ ▶️ John So, you know, we talked about this when Apple made the announcement that like, if you have an iPad
⏹️ ▶️ John or if you have an iPhone app, You have a choice of whether you want that iPhone app to
⏹️ ▶️ John be available for people to download on their Macs through the quote unquote
⏹️ ▶️ John Mac App Store, right? And you can say yes to opt in and no to opt out and every developer basically has to make
⏹️ ▶️ John this choice. But what if you want to run an iPhone app but the developer
⏹️ ▶️ John of that iPhone app has decided not to make it available to Mac users? For example, Marco could have decided,
⏹️ ▶️ John oh, Overcast, I’m gonna make a Mac version so I don’t want you downloading and using the iOS version. But he didn’t, so you can get
⏹️ ▶️ John overcast on your Mac, right? But another developer may not make that choice. Well, many people through experimentation
⏹️ ▶️ John have determined if you can just use, I don’t know what they’re using, iTunes or whatever, whatever
⏹️ ▶️ John way you can get to download the.ipa file onto
⏹️ ▶️ John your Mac,.ipa file is, what does it stand for? iPhone package something?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Something, it’s a renamed zip file. It’s one of many file formats that are just zip renamed. Yeah,
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s basically how we package up iOS applications for distribution.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco iPhone app, if I had
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, maybe. But anyway, if you can get one of those, as in a legit downloaded one from
⏹️ ▶️ John the app store, the real app store, and you can get it through iTunes, but when iTunes would download stuff,
⏹️ ▶️ John you could do it in a local backup, but anyway, get a legit downloaded.ipa for your iPhone applications.
⏹️ ▶️ John Lots of different ways to do this. Get that on your Mac and double-click it on an ARM-based Mac.
⏹️ ▶️ John It’ll run, because it’s valid, it’s signed, you have downloaded
⏹️ ▶️ John it through your Apple ID, It will do the fair play check and everything will, you know, it’s, it’s not like you’re hacking
⏹️ ▶️ John anything. If you can get that IPA, which you can, you can just run it on your Mac. Apparently now it
⏹️ ▶️ John may be broken. There may be a reason the developer chose not to distribute it on the Mac. And I’m not sure how sustainable
⏹️ ▶️ John this is and when Apple will close this door. But if there’s some app that you want to, you know, use that you can’t right
⏹️ ▶️ John now, try it. A person who wrote this into Mac rumors named Amy said she’s used this method to install Netflix,
⏹️ ▶️ John Hulu, YouTube, and Spotify, all of which at the time of writing were not available on the Mac App Store.
⏹️ ▶️ John But you can get the IPAs, and you can run them on your Mac. That’s very
⏹️ ▶️ Casey cool. By the way, real-time follow-up, iOS App Store package. So I in
⏹️ ▶️ Casey iOS, A in App Store, P in
⏹️ ▶️ John App Store. I don’t know if you can dig that A stand for App Store. App
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Store is two words. Wikipedia says it, so it must be true.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s like the ISO.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah. Oh, what does ISO stand for?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s something French, but it’s like the International Standards of Organization. It’s, I don’t know.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey Oh, no, no.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I thought you meant the CD-ROM archive.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey Technically, it’s the same thing. It is. It’s the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John same thing. Is it? It’s the same company. Yeah,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I mean, it’s a little bit of a walk to get there, but yes.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Wow. Well, today I learned. All right. Tell me about crossover. So this was something that I was
⏹️ ▶️ Casey not aware of, but apparently this is like a, well, I’m going to sell it short, but kind
⏹️ ▶️ Casey of like a white labeled version of wine. What is going on here? So for those who are not familiar,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey wine is a thing that I used to use when I told myself that running Linux full-time
⏹️ ▶️ Casey was a worthwhile endeavor. It wasn’t.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco We all had a Linux phase. Yep.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Title. So Wine, last I remember paying attention to
⏹️ ▶️ Casey it, was basically a shim on top of your local systems,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey like OS APIs, that acted like Windows APIs. So if you
⏹️ ▶️ Casey wanted to run an app that was built for Windows, it would start talking to Wine, W-I-N-E,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey which I think is a backronym for something.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Wine is not an emulator, I believe.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, I think you’re right. So anyway, so we talked to Wine and Wine would kind of like translate
⏹️ ▶️ Casey these API calls into something that your system like Mac, MacOS or Linux or what have you would understand.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And I guess crossover is a for pay, uh, like fancier
⏹️ ▶️ Casey version of wine. That’s presumably a lot less fiddly. Is that fair to say? I’m not sure which one of you put this in the show
⏹️ ▶️ Casey notes, so I’m reaching out to the two of you. Yeah.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah. That’s a bit, that’s basically what crossover is. And one of the main uses of it has been to run windows
⏹️ ▶️ John based games on your Mac without having to boot into windows. Obviously on an Intel-based Mac, you can use VMware
⏹️ ▶️ John or Parallels to run a full Windows OS, and then within that run games. You can also reboot with Boot
⏹️ ▶️ John Camp to boot your Intel-based Mac into Windows and run your games there for best performance. But Crossover is like Wine. It’s
⏹️ ▶️ John like, what if I don’t want to run a VM? I don’t want to run a full Windows operating system. I sure don’t want to reboot my Mac, but I do want to run
⏹️ ▶️ John a Windows game. Well, like Wine, you can launch the Windows game in the Crossover environment, and it will basically
⏹️ ▶️ John take all your Win32 calls or whatever and say, OK, well, you know, this This isn’t Windows,
⏹️ ▶️ John but I understand what you’re trying to do Windows applications, so I will make the roughly equivalent set
⏹️ ▶️ John of Mac OS or Unix calls to do the thing that you want and get the job done. So that’s
⏹️ ▶️ John what crossover is, where you’re like, well, that doesn’t have any relevance on M1 base Macs because M1 base Macs,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, they’re not Intel, right? And this is all about running Windows things and Windows only runs on Intel, except
⏹️ ▶️ John for the weird arm version that Microsoft won’t license to anybody yet. But anyway, what if I want to run Windows games on my
⏹️ ▶️ John M1 Mac? You might think you’re just SOL because you can’t run windows in parallel as a VMware, and
⏹️ ▶️ John you can’t reboot your ARM-based Mac into Windows yet. So what are you gonna do? Oh, and by the way, as
⏹️ ▶️ John we know, like Big Sur is 64-bit only, and
⏹️ ▶️ John there has never been a 32-bit processor in a Mac in ages, right? So how are you gonna
⏹️ ▶️ John run, and most Windows games are still 32-bit, how are you gonna run a 32-bit Windows game? Well, apparently, through the magic of Crossover,
⏹️ ▶️ John you’re able to take a 32-bit Windows game written for Intel processors and run it
⏹️ ▶️ John on a 64-bit ARM Mac. That has been named. Through the magic of translation. So here’s Jeremy
⏹️ ▶️ John White from Crossover. I think he’s one of his, yeah, he works at the company that makes his code reviewers.
⏹️ ▶️ John There’s so much emulation going on under the covers. Imagine a 32-bit Windows Intel binary running
⏹️ ▶️ John on a 32 to 62 bridge in Wine slash Crossover on top of Mac OS on ARM CPU that is emulating
⏹️ ▶️ John x86, and it works. This is just so cool. And Brendan Shanks, one of the developers, says,
⏹️ ▶️ John Mac OS 10.15 removed 32-bit executable support, but added support for 64-bit apps to
⏹️ ▶️ John create 32-bit code segments. Crossover uses that on Intel, and Rosetta
⏹️ ▶️ John emulates it, which is how you can do it on the Apple Silicon. So I didn’t know that, that you’re able to, like,
⏹️ ▶️ John in a 64-bit app, create a 32-bit code segment and then apparently execute that. And so that
⏹️ ▶️ John ability on Intel CPUs plus Mac OS 10.15 and later is being
⏹️ ▶️ John correctly emulated by Rosetta on ARM. And you would think, OK, well, this is, you know, it’s like one of those things where you run
⏹️ ▶️ John VMware inside VMware inside VMware. It’s cool and it’s funny, but that’s silly. It’s not actually practical, is it?
⏹️ ▶️ John They show playing actual games. Like you get acceptable gaming performance on certain varieties
⏹️ ▶️ John of games. It’s not incredibly, it’s not as slow as you would think it would be. It is actually viable for
⏹️ ▶️ John playing some type of games, Which is amazing.
Sponsor: HelloFresh (code atp90)
⏹️ ▶️ Marco We are sponsored this week by HelloFresh. HelloFresh offers convenient,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco easy, and stress-free meal kit delivery service. They have convenient no-contact
⏹️ ▶️ Marco delivery to your doorstep for easy home cooking with your family. HelloFresh’s recipes
⏹️ ▶️ Marco are easy to follow, with simple steps and pictures to guide you along the way. I’ve personally
⏹️ ▶️ Marco used HelloFresh before, and I love their recipe cards. They really are very easy to follow.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco They show you what things are supposed to look like at each step so you know how small do I chop this thing
⏹️ ▶️ Marco or what does it look like when it’s cooking. HelloFresh cuts out stressful
⏹️ ▶️ Marco meal planning and grocery store trips so you can enjoy cooking and get dinner on the table in about 30 minutes.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco This comes at a great value. You can save up to 40% when you use HelloFresh vs shopping at the grocery
⏹️ ▶️ Marco store. Feeding your whole family has never been easier with new lower prices for larger box
⏹️ ▶️ Marco sizes So more servings means more savings. And this is a huge variety
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of delicious, nutritious food. HelloFresh delivers fresh, high quality, pre-portioned ingredients.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco You can make meals that are delicious and nutritious. Over 90% of their ingredients are sourced directly from growers
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to ensure peak flavor and ripeness. And they offer more than 20 chef-crafted, delicious
⏹️ ▶️ Marco options every week to help you break out of your recipe rut, try new things, and make any
⏹️ ▶️ Marco night feel special. There’s something everybody will enjoy, including 20 minute meals, low calorie plans,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco vegetarian meals, kid approved recipes, and so much more. And HelloFresh is flexible
⏹️ ▶️ Marco for your lifestyle. You can easily change your delivery days or meal plan preferences, skip a
⏹️ ▶️ Marco week whenever you need to right in their easy to use app. And you can keep your fridge stocked by adding extra meals or
⏹️ ▶️ Marco additional proteins, quick meals like breakfast on the go or their 10 minute lunches, and even desserts to satisfy
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that sweet tooth. Go to hellofresh.com slash ATP 90 and use code
⏹️ ▶️ Marco ATP 90 to get $90 off including free shipping. That’s hellofresh.com
⏹️ ▶️ Marco slash ATP 90 code ATP 90 to get $90 off including free shipping.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Thank you so much to HelloFresh for sponsoring our show.
Shortcuts ❤️ custom app icons
⏹️ ▶️ Casey This is not something that I’ve dabbled with yet, but I know a lot of people are very happy about this forthcoming change.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey iOS 14.3 Beta 2 no longer opens the Shortcuts app when launching
⏹️ ▶️ Casey an app from a custom icon. So to back up a half step here, using Shortcuts, you
⏹️ ▶️ Casey can put a quote unquote app on your home screen with a custom icon
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that the shortcut, all it does is launch the app. So people are using this to be
⏹️ ▶️ Casey able to make their own icons for existing apps, both system and otherwise.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey This is part of the customization craze that our dear friend David Smith has been writing
⏹️ ▶️ Casey with WidgetSmith, which you should check out if you haven’t already. So the way it used to work was, or the
⏹️ ▶️ Casey way officially it still works, is that when you launch one of these shortcuts from your home screen,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey it will launch the shortcuts app for a flash and then punch you into this actual thing you’re trying to do.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And apparently in beta two, that’s no longer the case. It will just immediately open the app. And I believe it does one of the
⏹️ ▶️ Casey little banners at the top of the screen as well. But there’s no like flash into the
⏹️ ▶️ Casey shortcuts app first, which is excellent.
⏹️ ▶️ John This makes me think about sort of the corporate mechanics inside Apple, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John Because we know that, you know, where did shortcuts come from? It was the workflow team that Apple sort of acqua hired and then they
⏹️ ▶️ John made shortcuts for iOS, okay? And you know, especially given
⏹️ ▶️ John how, you know, It wasn’t very long ago when these were independent developers. Now they’re inside Apple.
⏹️ ▶️ John They see everyone doing this customization craze where they want to make custom icons for the applications. They do it by making
⏹️ ▶️ John a trivial shortcut and all it does is launch the apps and it goes through the shortcut app and people use it anyway, just
⏹️ ▶️ John because it’s a cool thing to do. But it would be better if it didn’t. You know that workflow development team
⏹️ ▶️ John sees that and says, oh, we can do that. Like we work inside Apple now and
⏹️ ▶️ John we’re the shortcuts team. It’s pretty easy for us to say, hey, if you make a shortcut that just launches an app, don’t
⏹️ ▶️ John bounce through shortcuts, just launch the app directly. And so they implemented and do it. And this is a beta, so it hasn’t shipped yet, but
⏹️ ▶️ John I can see that sort of feedback loop being simple and closed, right? But
⏹️ ▶️ John on the other hand, there are larger strategic implications of
⏹️ ▶️ John allowing customers this level of customization, which based on our discussion of
⏹️ ▶️ John the whole widgets thing back when we were talking about iOS 14, we’re all in favor of, and we think it’s a great idea to let
⏹️ ▶️ John people customize in this way. But I have felt like that Apple
⏹️ ▶️ John accidentally backed into this by accidentally providing a critical mass of customizability
⏹️ ▶️ John combined with apps like Underscore’s Widget Smith that suddenly allowed people
⏹️ ▶️ John to express themselves in a holistic way and theme their home screens. It doesn’t look like
⏹️ ▶️ John anything that Apple planned and pitched and promoted. They just kind of got it accidentally.
⏹️ ▶️ John So this type of small change or it’s the shortcuts team does an obvious thing based on customer feedback.
⏹️ ▶️ John this is the thing people want and we can do it pretty easily so here you go is Kind of a tacit endorsement
⏹️ ▶️ John of this theming craze Without I feel like a buy-in from the larger org
⏹️ ▶️ John because the real full buy-in way to do it would be oh Now on the setting screen. There’s a place
⏹️ ▶️ John where you can customize every app icon or now on the setting screen There’s a themes section where you can download
⏹️ ▶️ John theme packs from the theme store like we know how a Full-throated sort of endorsement of
⏹️ ▶️ John this thing would look from Apple right? I mean how they did the iMessage store no one uses that
⏹️ ▶️ John like a theme store or a watch face store like we like That’s sort of the whole
⏹️ ▶️ John Apple buys in this is the shortcut team is filled with developers who want to do the right thing And so they
⏹️ ▶️ John have So I’m still watching this space to see how much Apple is
⏹️ ▶️ John willing to embrace theming and customization on iOS Because
⏹️ ▶️ John I can tell you on the Mac aside from free your accent colors Apple has not
⏹️ ▶️ John fully endorsed theming and has mostly accidentally shut down every
⏹️ ▶️ John application on Mac OS X anyway that has allowed some kind of theming from candy bar to shape
⏹️ ▶️ John shifter to all that other good stuff. It’s not that they had it out for them, it’s just that they never considered that an important
⏹️ ▶️ John use case and they slowly, semi-accidentally, semi-on purpose broke it all
⏹️ ▶️ John until where we are today where no one really tries to do anything. But iOS is going in the other direction So I’m
⏹️ ▶️ John still watching this space.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, wasn’t there, I don’t know, like an iOS release or two ago, a way that I think
⏹️ ▶️ Casey shortcuts could set like your lock screen or your wallpaper on your home screen.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And then that like got pulled, then it came back and then it got pulled. And from the outside, it almost smelled like there was
⏹️ ▶️ Casey a cat and mouse going on between the, you know, former,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey the shortcuts team, what was it called? Workflow, God, I just had a total blank, sorry. The former Workflow
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Now Shortcuts team and the rest of the iOS team at Apple, where, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Shortcuts slash Workflow was like, Oh yeah, we can totally make it. So you can change your home screen and your lock screen. And then the rest of the
⏹️ ▶️ Casey iOS group was like, huh? What? No, no, no, no, no.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And it just went back and forth a few times. I think it actually just came back recently, but yeah, it is interesting to see
⏹️ ▶️ Casey a group of developers that, that very much believed in the, you know, go fast and break
⏹️ ▶️ Casey things mantra and how they’re dealing with the large, you know, aircraft carrier that
⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t think they’re going fast and breaking things. They’re just being as responsive as they would be as an independent company, which is
⏹️ ▶️ John more responsive than Apple is.
Rearranging app icons
⏹️ ▶️ John talking about teams being responsive. I will once again make my pitch to anybody at Apple who is listening.
⏹️ ▶️ John There is a level of customization that iOS has allowed basically from day one, which is the ability to rearrange
⏹️ ▶️ John icons in your home screen. That interface continues to be a thorn in the world’s side. Please, please,
⏹️ ▶️ John somebody, because third-party developers can’t do this. If you let third-party developers do it, it would be solved already, but you haven’t.
⏹️ ▶️ John You’re keeping it for yourself. So if you’re gonna keep it for yourself, please give us a way to rearrange home screens
⏹️ ▶️ John and icons in a way that does not drive us all up a wall and make us tear our hair out because the current system
⏹️ ▶️ John is really, really bad and my home screens are a mess and I want to fix them and I can’t.
⏹️ ▶️ John Please, please, Apple, do something about this.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, I would like Apple to treat the home screen arrangement
⏹️ ▶️ Marco as more valuable data than they appear to treat it right now. Because
⏹️ ▶️ Marco right now, I like, so, you know, when I was going through, you know, COVID last two weeks, I decided
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I should add to my home screen a widget that can display the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco blood oxygen level from my Apple Watch, whatever the last measurement was, I want that on a widget on my home screen so I can see it all the time. Well,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that’s a good idea.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, thanks, I thought so too. And I did eventually find something that could do that. Let me plug it real fast.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s called Health View, and it just displays like anything from Health Kit in a widget. And
⏹️ ▶️ Marco when I first, like, I don’t know anybody, myself included, who has placed a widget
⏹️ ▶️ Marco on their home screen successfully without totally screwing up a million other icons
⏹️ ▶️ Marco in the process. Yeah,
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s like setting off a bomb on your home screen.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, and there is, not only is there no undo, but even if you just
⏹️ ▶️ Marco take whatever widget you had just bombed your home screen with and just move it to a different page,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the icons don’t go back to the way they were. They go back to some other like shuffled random order.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s really weird.
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s literally like a bomb. It’s like if you set off a bomb and then you remove the bomb, the
⏹️ ▶️ John bricks don’t go back to where they are. they stay scattered to the four winds.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, like they just collapse back inward in random orders. Like, it’s very strange. Like, I had
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to look back at a screenshot that I had taken of my home screen a few days earlier for other reasons.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Like, I had to look for that to know how did I have these icons arranged again?
⏹️ ▶️ John That’s the main reason I take screenshots of my home screen, by the way. Sometimes people say, oh, show us your old home screen.
⏹️ ▶️ John The only reason I have those is because I always take one, if I’m smart, before I start trying to rearrange because
⏹️ ▶️ John I know it’s gonna be chaos.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, and it just, it seems like, it seems like maybe, maybe whoever works on Springboard
⏹️ ▶️ Marco at Apple, just by the nature of working on Springboard, maybe they have such constant,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco like, you know, disturbances in their icon arrangements as part of that job, that they
⏹️ ▶️ Marco just don’t realize how incredibly disruptive it is when it happens to most
⏹️ ▶️ Marco people. Cause like, you know, I’ll keep the same icon arrangement for a lot of stuff, like on my main home screen, I’ll keep it for years.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And when that gets disrupted, it, like, you can’t find things where they are. Cause you’re so
⏹️ ▶️ Marco used to the spatial memory of where things were. And so like, it’s such a incredibly
⏹️ ▶️ Marco disruptive thing to have that be messed up in a big way. And I don’t know how you can possibly
⏹️ ▶️ Marco install a widget on any home screen and not do that. It’s,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I do hope that Apple realizes how bad this is sometime and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco actually improves that.
⏹️ ▶️ John And to be clear, the app library stuff and being able to hide home screens, Those are all good features. We’re not saying get rid
⏹️ ▶️ John of those. You have to have those too. And also, for the home screens that you want to actually
⏹️ ▶️ John have, you have to be able to arrange things in a sane way. I’ve been trying new techniques because I’ve been trying to work
⏹️ ▶️ John on my later home screens because like I said, my home screens are a mess. And no technique I can
⏹️ ▶️ John find can get me sanity. Like I think the behavior has changed slightly recently
⏹️ ▶️ John because what I’ve been doing, my main technique that I’ve used is the grab and hold and then flick with the other finger to scroll.
⏹️ ▶️ John So it’s like a two-handed technique. rather than pushing to the screen edge, which is, you know, it’s madness. You’ll
⏹️ ▶️ John never be successful that way, right? So you just grab one or more icons, then you swipe with the other finger quickly.
⏹️ ▶️ John The problem is, no matter how fast you swipe, momentarily, iOS thinks
⏹️ ▶️ John you’re on one of the other home screens. And when you’re on there momentarily, it tends to eject
⏹️ ▶️ John other icons, like subatomic particles in a particle collider. It ejects them outwards,
⏹️ ▶️ John right? And you’re like, but I’m just passing through. I’m on my way to page five, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John I didn’t want to disturb anything on page three, but I have. And the new thing that I think in the last two
⏹️ ▶️ John iOS versions or whatever is, I’ll get to page five, I’ll find the place for it, it’s like preparing the way with
⏹️ ▶️ John my fridge again. I will have prepared a spot for it, I’ll get to page five, I’ll land the icons if I’m lucky.
⏹️ ▶️ John Sometimes I’m unlucky and they just go somewhere and I have no idea where. But then I’ll go back and I’ll
⏹️ ▶️ John swipe backwards and I’ll see that icons were ejected and somehow spawned a new
⏹️ ▶️ John page just for the ejected icons between what was page three and page four, and now there’ll be a page
⏹️ ▶️ John with one or two icons on it? I’m like, where did you come from? And I’ll look to either side,
⏹️ ▶️ John and sometimes either side is filled with icons. I’m like, how is that possible? Where did these come from? And how
⏹️ ▶️ John did you make a new page for yourself? I was just passing through, and I thought I successfully landed those two icons
⏹️ ▶️ John on page five, but now I have an extra page with two icons on it? It’s the worst, it’s getting worse. Like it’s,
⏹️ ▶️ John before it used to be, oh, well, I keep going from one edge to the other, and it squirms out of the way, and yada, yada, but at
⏹️ ▶️ John least it was somewhat sensible. Like there was just a big linear list, like a big snake and you just push things, but now they spawn
⏹️ ▶️ John their own pages. That’s like, we need an interface to do this that is not,
⏹️ ▶️ John that A, is undoable slash like sort of rearrange and then commit, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John And then B, provides a richer interface than our fingers
⏹️ ▶️ John on the phone screen. If we could do it on a Mac, if we could do it on an iPad, or if we could do it on a phone in miniaturized
⏹️ ▶️ John size in a sort of trial mode where you’re just in this app that lets you rearrange home screens and only when you get it all
⏹️ ▶️ John the way you want it do you say commit or you just bail and say, well, nevermind, or you leave it in progress or whatever. But
⏹️ ▶️ John like I said, if there was an API for doing this, which I’m not really asking for, this is a tall
⏹️ ▶️ John order for API. All I’m saying, if there was a third-party API for home screen management, this problem will be solved a hundred
⏹️ ▶️ John ways because third parties would make money doing it because there’s a need and people wanna do it and
⏹️ ▶️ John we just met this proof that there’s an appetite for this type of thing, but there’s no third-party API. It makes sense, it should
⏹️ ▶️ John be a first party thing. Apple just do a better job at it. That’s all we’re asking for.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey You know, it’s funny because just a couple of days ago, I was talking to my dad and he said,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey can you still arrange your home screen in iTunes? And I was like, well, it’s not iTunes anymore, it’s music.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And no, I don’t think so. And you can’t do it in the Finder either, I don’t believe. In fact, I don’t think that’s been a thing for
⏹️ ▶️ John You can do it in the Apple Configurator too, supposedly. I’ve tried to take a run at it a few times
⏹️ ▶️ John and I think there’s a way to do it, but I think you kind of have to pretend that you’re managing
⏹️ ▶️ John a bunch of people’s corporate iOS devices or something. Like it was scary enough that I bailed
⏹️ ▶️ John out every time I took a run at it, but before people send us this feedback, apparently there is a way to use Apple Configurator 2
⏹️ ▶️ John to somehow do this. And Apple Configurator 2 is an app that you run on your Mac. So maybe there’s a better,
⏹️ ▶️ John easier way to do it, but iTunes was the best solution we’ve had so far. And even that wasn’t great,
⏹️ ▶️ John because you would think that, oh, you’ve got a Mac screen and this huge, you know, huge iTunes window. surely you can
⏹️ ▶️ John make this easy with a mouse cursor or whatever. It was still weird and hard. It wasn’t a good interface.
⏹️ ▶️ John Again, if this was a third party API, there would, the third party, many people would make third
⏹️ ▶️ John party apps and the good ones would float to the top. Instead we just got the one implementation iTunes, which was better than nothing. Like
⏹️ ▶️ John that’s why your dad was asking for it, because it was better than just trying to do it with your finger. but it still wasn’t good.
GitHub + ??? + ICE
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Then finally, one very quick piece of follow-up. I was lamenting last week about GitHub’s relationship
⏹️ ▶️ Casey with the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement. It was pointed out to me that
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that isn’t a direct relationship. So what happened was a third-party reseller
⏹️ ▶️ Casey sold an on-premises GitHub Enterprise Server, like instance contract, whatever, on
⏹️ ▶️ Casey behalf of GitHub, but GitHub didn’t seek this business themselves. There is a third party in between the two.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey It doesn’t make me feel that much better about it personally, but you may have a different interpretation of it, and I will put
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s like money laundering for morals.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey So I’ll put a link in the show notes to their response about this, which was from late last, actually almost exactly
⏹️ ▶️ Casey a year ago. So you can check it out if you’re interested.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Also, I’m going to be doing a podcast, so if you want to check it out, you can go to my podcast, which is on the podcast.com page.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So I wanted to give a quick shout out to this wonderful, so okay, earlier this evening, I had
⏹️ ▶️ Marco discovered throughout all of my new device setups that for the first time ever,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I had a sync problem with my contacts database. For the first time ever, I all of
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a sudden had duplicates of every single contact in my address book.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And I had heard Merlin talk about this before on Back to Work, so I knew there were like apps out there that would help you
⏹️ ▶️ Marco find and clean up duplicates. So I asked in a Slack group what these apps were
⏹️ ▶️ Marco called and what a good one was. And somebody who knows a bit about Mac OS
⏹️ ▶️ Marco named John Siracusa said, did you try the menu command
⏹️ ▶️ Marco in the contacts app to deduplicate? I didn’t even know this was here. John, when was
⏹️ ▶️ John I’ve spent there for a long time. I asked that timidly because a lot of people have contact problems.
⏹️ ▶️ John And sometimes that dedupe command doesn’t do the job. And the reason they’re asking is, hey, I
⏹️ ▶️ John tried the built-in dedup command and it couldn’t do what I wanted, so now give me the third party like Power
⏹️ ▶️ John App or whatever. And I was hoping that maybe you didn’t even know that it was in there, but yeah, it’s been in there for a while. I’ve used it
⏹️ ▶️ John a lot. It’s pretty good. If you have a straight up duplication,
⏹️ ▶️ John it will handle it. If instead you’ve done like I’ve done several times where you import a bunch of V cards that
⏹️ ▶️ John are from an old backup or something and it really takes a little bit of doing, it’s a good first step.
⏹️ ▶️ John I think it’s been in there for many, many years, but I couldn’t pin it down to a particular release.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So this is under the card menu. So in the contacts app, card menu, look for duplicates. And it
⏹️ ▶️ Marco also had a feature, which is a great little thing that I frequently need, where
⏹️ ▶️ Marco if it has a, it has two names, you can have it optionally like merge the info
⏹️ ▶️ Marco whenever it sees the same name in two different records. And this happens all the time because of a
⏹️ ▶️ Marco relatively terrible design decision in the the messages app where you,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and I think you see this a few other places like phone and stuff, where you get something from
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a new number and it gives you the option create a new contact or add to existing
⏹️ ▶️ Marco contact. And the problem is, does anybody else face this problem? I face this constantly.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I never know, do I have a contact for this person yet? And so what I want
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is a name search box that I can type in their name and see whether I
⏹️ ▶️ Marco have a contact for them yet, and then if I do, add this number to it, and if
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I don’t, create a new one. And the interface doesn’t let you do that, it’s just create new or add to existing,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and if you change your mind, you gotta like cancel out of that screen and then like rebuild the entire
⏹️ ▶️ Marco sequence of taps or commands that got you there. So I frequently would have
⏹️ ▶️ Marco like, you know, two contacts with the same name that are the same person, but one of them has an an email address and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco one of them is a phone number. And this command also fixes that. And I had some
⏹️ ▶️ Marco good luck with that as well. So I ran this earlier tonight. I fixed my entire problem. And yeah, thanks, contacts app in,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco apparently, Mavericks, when this started. That was a very good feature.
⏹️ ▶️ John So the cynical message that I didn’t write in the Slack to follow up is, I now enjoy doing that at least
⏹️ ▶️ John once a week for the rest of your life. Because here’s the thing. Where did the duplicates come from?
⏹️ ▶️ John You didn’t make two of all your contacts. Somehow they just appeared. and not knowing why they appeared, the fact
⏹️ ▶️ John that you can fix them, you’re like, oh great, I’ve solved that problem. But then tomorrow you wake up and you have to do all your contacts again.
⏹️ ▶️ John And then you do find duplicates and fixes it. And then next week you see you have to do all your contacts. And so it’s like, I
⏹️ ▶️ John hope that doesn’t happen to you. But that is one of the sort of, when sync goes wrong and you don’t
⏹️ ▶️ John know why, it’s great to be able to fix it in an automated way, but it still sort of
⏹️ ▶️ John shakes the foundation of your confidence in the system. Like how did this happen
⏹️ ▶️ John and will it happen again?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, that’s why I was so surprised to see it because really like the basics of iCloud syncing,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the contacts, calendars, like that kind of stuff has always worked very well for me.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And I’ve heard of other people having issues. I’m like a contact syncing unicorn, never had any problems.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And the amount of devices that I set up and delete
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and go through is higher than average. And I’ve carried the same database through
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a much longer time span than probably the average customer. And so to have gone this long
⏹️ ▶️ Marco without having any sync hiccups at all, I consider that a win. And when this
⏹️ ▶️ Marco happened, I was like, yeah, of course this is gonna happen. Like if this happens once in, what is it? In 15 years,
⏹️ ▶️ John That’s like mice or cockroaches.
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco Mm, yeah. You don’t just
⏹️ ▶️ John see one of them. Here’s the speaking of
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco your database.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco If you see one, it’s okay. If you see more than one, you’re screwed.
⏹️ ▶️ John No, no, if you see one, there’s a hundred you don’t see. That’s the whole thing. Speaking of database, Have you made
⏹️ ▶️ John a backup of your contacts database recently slash ever?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yes, right before I did the deduping, I did the export to the big contact archive thing.
⏹️ ▶️ John That’s a thing I would recommend people do. Anytime they find themselves diving into the contacts app on their Mac,
⏹️ ▶️ John because they’re really going to get some stuff straight, like say, before doing your holiday cards. You’re like, OK, I’m going
⏹️ ▶️ John in and I’m going to straighten out my addresses, because a bunch of people moved, and yada yada. Stop.
⏹️ ▶️ John Before you start getting in there and digging around, make a complete backup of your contacts database.
⏹️ ▶️ John The Contacts app has a command to do this inside of it. And make a
⏹️ ▶️ John backup of it, and don’t just call it Contacts Backup, put the date and the name, put it in a folder somewhere and have
⏹️ ▶️ John multiple Contacts backups. So then, if you do get bitten by an evil, you
⏹️ ▶️ John know, Contacts bug that keeps duplicating your things, you can always go Scorched Earth. The beauty of Contacts, unlike
⏹️ ▶️ John photos and other data that is really big, Contacts are relatively small. You can make a complete
⏹️ ▶️ John backup of them and say, forget it, I give up. wipe all your contacts, delete everything,
⏹️ ▶️ John and then just restore again from within the contacts app, restore from your backup and get back to hopefully
⏹️ ▶️ John a good starting point. Even doing that can be difficult because to really delete all of your contacts is surprisingly
⏹️ ▶️ John tricky because you’d have to delete it and allow that deletion to sync to all your devices and make sure there’s not one poison device
⏹️ ▶️ John screwing everything up somewhere. And then when you’re confident, okay, the only contact in there is the
⏹️ ▶️ John me contact, which is another tricky thing you got to deal with. How do you set up the me contact, right? Now
⏹️ ▶️ John I’m good, then you could restore from your backup. But if you don’t have a backup, you’re kind of out of luck. So please, everybody,
⏹️ ▶️ John make a backup of your contacts before you start screwing with them.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Also, if you use the file export contacts archive version of this,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it puts the date in the file name for you in the box. So you don’t even have to type in the date.
⏹️ ▶️ John Look at that there. I don’t know when they started doing that, but that’s convenient. That’s exactly what you want.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco We are sponsored this week by Flatfile, the easy, very
⏹️ ▶️ Marco well featured import button for your web app. Think of the last time you imported
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a spreadsheet to an app. Did it work correctly the first time? Nearly everybody has dealt with
⏹️ ▶️ Marco formatting messy CSVs or Excel files so the data can be imported correctly into
⏹️ ▶️ Marco an app. It’s a huge pain. Even engineers like us are not spared from this pain.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco We are typically doomed to build our data parsers from scratch and usually not even for the first
⏹️ ▶️ Marco time. I personally can relate to this. I built so many CSV importers. And
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it isn’t just CSV upload, it’s things like header mapping and data validation or even a nice
⏹️ ▶️ Marco UI component, which really adds to the complexity of this. As exciting as it is to build
⏹️ ▶️ Marco another custom importer compared to your core product features, our friends
⏹️ ▶️ Marco at Flatfile have finally made a good solution. Flat file portal
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is the elegant import button offering an intuitive data import experience
⏹️ ▶️ Marco for your app. Portal integrates with virtually any application and in a matter of minutes
⏹️ ▶️ Marco can intelligently ingest, validate and transform incoming spreadsheet data
⏹️ ▶️ Marco so it’s clean and ready to use in your back end. If you’re interested in testing out flat file
⏹️ ▶️ Marco portal in a production environment, or even playing with any code sandbox, visit get.flatfile.io
⏹️ ▶️ Marco slash ATP. Once again, that’s get.flatfile.io
⏹️ ▶️ Marco slash ATP for flat file portal, the elegant import button for your app.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Thank you so much Thanks to Flatfile for sponsoring our show once again.
10 years of podcasting
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Okay, so for the last couple of weeks, if you’ve heard the bootleg, which is our, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey no holds barred, immediately released, not that great sound quality, no ads,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey but you get to hear all the garbage version of the show. I’m selling it super
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco well. Really selling it. Yeah,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey you can, you can join us in listening to the bootleg or a ad free but nicely edited
⏹️ ▶️ Casey version of the show by going to atp.fm slash join. And for those of you who have already
⏹️ ▶️ Casey thank you. You’ve heard me trying desperately to bring up a topic for like
⏹️ ▶️ Casey two or three weeks running that underscore my name is T said in the chat a couple of weeks ago.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And they said, after show request for the week after next, which again is like two or three weeks ago now,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey two Wednesdays from the time this was written is the 10th anniversary of the first build and analyze episode. It’d be
⏹️ ▶️ Casey great to hear some reflections on 10 years of podcasting, how it’s changed, what surprised you, etc.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I am so desperate to hear this, not because I really have anything to contribute, but
⏹️ ▶️ Casey because I really want to hear what you guys have to say about this. As the elder statesman
⏹️ ▶️ Casey of the three of us, what has podcasting been like for you for 10 years? And since
⏹️ ▶️ Casey we started with Build and Analyze and this question, let’s start with Marco.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, first of all, you do have a lot to contribute to this because this show is what, seven years old?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey a good point. I always, I feel like it’s not that old. Almost eight.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey It’s like seven and a half years old. So, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it really, you have been here for most of this time. You also were listening
⏹️ ▶️ Marco for this whole time.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you do have things that you should add to this. So I am gonna put you on the spot and have you add stuff to this later as
⏹️ ▶️ Marco well. But I honestly, you know, I don’t have a lot to say
⏹️ ▶️ Marco about this right now. You know, it’s in many ways, what we do
⏹️ ▶️ Marco as the kind of podcasters we are, which that’s a big asterisk, but the kind of podcasters
⏹️ ▶️ Marco we are in many ways, what we do hasn’t really changed much during this time.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco We have our handful of totally non-diverse white men
⏹️ ▶️ Marco talking with each other for a couple hours each week, unscripted. We
⏹️ ▶️ Marco have an outline of topics, but we don’t script things that we’re going to say.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s a very, very high quality implementation of very low
⏹️ ▶️ Marco production value. So like, if that makes sense, like we try to sound as good
⏹️ ▶️ Marco as we can with sound quality and we put in some niceties that we didn’t used to do
⏹️ ▶️ Marco things like chapter markers and you know, we have our ad free members version as case we’re just talking about
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and stuff like that. It’s like we have like production values in that sense. We, you know, we do detailed show notes
⏹️ ▶️ Marco for each episode. We do a little description. So the experience in a podcast app is pretty
⏹️ ▶️ Marco rich. Our website exists and is functional. And so, you know.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey It remains a product in our lineup.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco no, but there’s permalink pages for each episode. That’s not a given for podcasts.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Trust me, I know. I maintain an index of podcasts. Like, that’s far from a given. Our
⏹️ ▶️ Marco podcast is easily shareable because we don’t do dynamic ad insertion. And so our timestamps matter
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and are stable. And so stuff like that. So like we, we have a lot of production value on that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco side of things, but we are not doing like a music
⏹️ ▶️ Marco bed under every segment and having scripted segments and interviews where we go out on scene and talk
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to a person in Iowa whenever, like we don’t, we don’t do stuff like that the way like high production
⏹️ ▶️ Marco podcasts do. Cause that’s just a different style of show. It requires a totally different skillset
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and a staff and everything else that this there’s not what we do. But what
⏹️ ▶️ Marco we do is a really good version of people talking to each other unscripted
⏹️ ▶️ Marco about computers and Apple News each week. And funded by a few
⏹️ ▶️ Marco statically baked in host-read ads spread throughout the episode. And
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that basic format, we’ve been doing that for pretty much 10 years. We’ve refined the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco format over time, but that basic thing we’ve been doing for pretty much the whole time. And
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that existed before us, and there’s no sign of that stopping anytime
⏹️ ▶️ Marco soon in the future either. But, that’s just
⏹️ ▶️ Marco what we do in our little corner of podcasting. What has mostly changed
⏹️ ▶️ Marco in the last 10 years is that while this version of podcasting has
⏹️ ▶️ Marco definitely grown, the rest of the podcasting world became
⏹️ ▶️ Marco way bigger and went in some pretty different directions. So our version of podcasting
⏹️ ▶️ Marco became a much smaller proportion of the podcasting world as a whole. And some of this is great, you know, some of
⏹️ ▶️ Marco this, I mentioned our diversity issues earlier, as podcasting has gotten bigger, diversity
⏹️ ▶️ Marco has dramatically improved. And thank God, it needed to. It still needs to. We’re still nowhere near,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco like, being a representative sample of the world’s population. Not even close. But
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it is way better than it used to be and we’re making progress in that area so that’s good. There are other areas
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of where podcasting has gone that might not be so great
⏹️ ▶️ Marco for us. You know, things like as the big money platforms move
⏹️ ▶️ Marco in and start locking stuff down and making all these like exclusivity deals that take
⏹️ ▶️ Marco people out of podcasting and lock their stuff into a certain app or something. Like that’s That’s not great.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Like that, that actively threatens the world that we’re in. Not as much as people think, but it does
⏹️ ▶️ Marco threaten it. And also, you know, I mentioned earlier that we are funded as we’ve been
⏹️ ▶️ Marco this entire time, mostly by the sponsor reads that are in each episode. And if the sponsor
⏹️ ▶️ Marco landscape dramatically changes in some way, that could affect us too.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So even if like the big business side of podcasting, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco most of the time we can kind of coexist and we don’t get any shutters away and what they do is over there and we
⏹️ ▶️ Marco do is over here and it’s fine but if they cause major changes
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to happen in the sponsor landscape that could affect us so that could be things like
⏹️ ▶️ Marco if all sponsors start requiring way more tracking data than what we give them
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know so far we have had to turn away I think one or two sponsors ever
⏹️ ▶️ Marco because we don’t do demographic tracking. But everyone else, and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco they’ve required it, and everyone else is like, they ask and we say, we don’t do that and they say, okay, and they just,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco they buy that anyway, right? We should tell you something about the value of demographic tracking. Anyway, the,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco but like, if the sponsor landscape shifts around in bigger ways,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco where sponsors start requiring for all the shows they sponsor the same
⏹️ ▶️ Marco kind of data or other things that they get from like the really really
⏹️ ▶️ Marco big shows with their dynamic ad insertion platforms and like micro targeting and tracking all that stuff
⏹️ ▶️ Marco then that would affect us in a negative way but for the most part as the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco big world of podcasting has grown most of the way it is ways that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it grows is just in having some really big shows. And if a show is really big,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that doesn’t really negatively affect us, you know, in almost any possible way. Again,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco these kind of like macroeconomic factors could affect us, but they, so far they mostly haven’t.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So it’s been overall good for us, but interestingly, like the thing that we
⏹️ ▶️ Marco do, like the kind of shows that we make, the kind of shows I listen to, frankly,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco are mostly the same as they were 10 years ago. There’s more of them. There are
⏹️ ▶️ Marco more people in this world than there were back then. There are more listeners in this world. The shows have all
⏹️ ▶️ Marco gotten better. Like we’ve gotten better at doing this format. We’ve gotten just better at our jobs and the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco equipment has gotten better. The software has gotten better. Our techniques and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that’s all gotten better. And hopefully we’ve gotten a little bit wiser in a decade.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco But for the most part, the core of what we do here
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is basically the same but better now. And 10 years is a long
⏹️ ▶️ Marco time. I think it’s a lot better. But overall, we’re still hanging out, talking
⏹️ ▶️ Marco with our friends once a week for a couple hours about technology and Apple stuff. And
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I love that. and I’m in no rush to change or stop that because
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I still can’t believe that we get paid to do this. That’s incredible to me.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s still incredible to me. I’ve said this before, so I won’t go too far into it, but I’m not even a good speaker.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’ve never been a good speaker. I don’t pronounce words right, and I stutter
⏹️ ▶️ Marco constantly, and I don’t plan what I’m saying, and I say uh or um and like and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco constantly. I know this because I’m the editor of the show. You would
⏹️ ▶️ Marco think, I did used to think before podcasting that I could never get a job as,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco one of my kid fantasy jobs was I wanted to be a radio DJ. But I thought, well, I don’t have the voice for
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it. I don’t speak well enough, I don’t have that kind of low 90s radio DJ voice, all that stuff. So I figured,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco yeah, you know what, I guess I won’t ever be able to do that. It turns out being a radio DJ is a terrible
⏹️ ▶️ Marco job in practice And being a podcaster is an awesome job in practice. And
⏹️ ▶️ Marco yeah, I could never be a radio DJ. I’m not, I don’t have the right traits to do that.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco But I do apparently have the right traits to stumble into this, because the world of podcasting
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is different and more forgiving and more human and less of that like polished, you
⏹️ ▶️ Marco know, 80s artificial perfection kind of image. And so this,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco this I can do. And it still shocks me that I can do this, But
⏹️ ▶️ Marco now it’s been 10 years and after this long, I used to be nervous before every single show
⏹️ ▶️ Marco for probably the first six or seven years. That’s finally stopped. But
⏹️ ▶️ Marco yeah, otherwise, I’m just very happy with what
⏹️ ▶️ Marco we do. I’m incredibly happy that people still tune in and listen to this stuff. Because
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to me, it’s just BSing with my friends about tech that we would have been talking about anyway. But we just happen to record it
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and do it in a slightly more structured way. And
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that’s how we started back then and that’s still what we’re doing now. So I’m just really
⏹️ ▶️ Marco happy that we’ve kind of found our groove and that this is a thing that continues
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to exist and that podcasting for all of the effort that has been thrown at
⏹️ ▶️ Marco trying to ruin it, no one has succeeded at ruining it.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco think it’s proven to be pretty resilient to being ruined by many things about its
⏹️ ▶️ Marco nature that are likely to stay that way for a while long, or at least I hope. So
⏹️ ▶️ Marco yeah, so far, I mean, back when I started out, I wasn’t as much in the business. I didn’t
⏹️ ▶️ Marco make Overcast until almost halfway through this period.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So I was only a podcaster before that. I wasn’t a podcast app maker
⏹️ ▶️ Marco for the whole time. So that kind of changed my view of it in certain ways. but
⏹️ ▶️ Marco overall, I still love this world. I still, like, back when I announced
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Overcast at XOXO, I think it was like 2013 or something,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I gave this comparison in my presentation about how, like, you know, the world of text on the web, and big
⏹️ ▶️ Marco text was a world that I kind of was turned off by, but the world of big podcasting
⏹️ ▶️ Marco was just like everything I liked. It was all, like, good technology, good people,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco great audiences. And I just, I loved how the world of podcasting
⏹️ ▶️ Marco worked. And that was almost seven years ago now. Actually, it might’ve been exactly seven
⏹️ ▶️ Marco years ago. And that’s still the case. Like I still look around the web
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and I still look at like the world of text on the web, you know, all the big
⏹️ ▶️ Marco media articles and everything. And I don’t want to be a part of that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco world. I was for a long time. And it really took some bad
⏹️ ▶️ Marco turns over these years. And it’s not a good place for a
⏹️ ▶️ Marco lot of people to be anymore. Some people can still make a good time out of it, but it’s certainly not what
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it was. Podcasting seems to just still be getting better. And
⏹️ ▶️ Marco as all this big money has moved in, it’s certainly, there have been a little bit of kind of uneasy times
⏹️ ▶️ Marco here and there where we see some massive amount of money being spent to try to ruin
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it. And it’s hard not to feel a little bit scared when that happens, but so far, those
⏹️ ▶️ Marco attempts mostly just bounce off of us, or they are a bunch of the big
⏹️ ▶️ Marco shows and the big ad networks and the big hosting platforms that host the big shows with the big ad networks,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco all buying each other and doing things that affect each other, but that don’t affect
⏹️ ▶️ Marco us over here. So as long as that dynamic continues to be the case, I’m very optimistic and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I love the world of podcasts And I’m very happy to be in it all this time. And
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’d like to stay here.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Concur. You know, I really want to hear what John has to say, but just briefly, you know, I was looking,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey as we record, I get a pretty solid first draft of the show notes together. And Marco will,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey you know, edit things here and there, and John will add things here and there and edit things occasionally.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey But I was looking at the, to get the link for the year XOXO video that you just mentioned.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And, you know, I found it pretty quickly. And I’m looking at this and it says, you know, Marco Arment,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey the magazine slash Instapaper,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey he asked New York writer and programmer Marco Arment to speak at XOXO, he was still developing Instapaper and the magazine and Tumblr
⏹️ ▶️ Casey was an independent startup. Since then he sold the magazine to Glenn Fleischman, Instapaper to Betaworks, and Tumblr sold to Yahoo in a
⏹️ ▶️ Casey billion dollar deal. Uh, it, one of the best parts of independence is choosing what you work on and Marco’s clearing is played
⏹️ ▶️ Casey for something brand new. It’s funny to me that I’ll read
⏹️ ▶️ Casey this and the magazine was like 30 years ago, but ATP started last year. Like
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that’s the way I feel about it, you know what I mean? Like the magazine was so long ago to me. It was
⏹️ ▶️ Casey forever ago. And yes, conceptually, intellectually, I understand that ATP was
⏹️ ▶️ Casey seven, you know, we started almost eight years ago now, but it doesn’t feel like it’s been almost
⏹️ ▶️ Casey eight years, which hopefully is a testament to the two of you and our awesome listeners.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey But nevertheless, it’s just, it’s so funny how one thing can feel forever ago and another feels
⏹️ ▶️ Casey like it was just yesterday. But anyway, John, what are your thoughts on this as the other elder Statesman?
⏹️ ▶️ John I think we need, I need to plan more surprise segments on the show to make Marco feel nervous before we record
⏹️ ▶️ John again. I’m going to get back that nervous energy. Why are you coming into the show complacent? You don’t know
⏹️ ▶️ John what’s going to happen. Anything can happen. You got to start pre-flighting
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey record. It’s time for Marco
⏹️ ▶️ John I think, yeah, I think Marco covered most of the industry stuff pretty well, and I think I got most of the
⏹️ ▶️ John navel gazing slash back padding out in in the episode 400 spectacular. So
⏹️ ▶️ John the only thing I’ll add here is some personal reflections on 10 years of podcasting. Did I start
⏹️ ▶️ John Hypercritical? Or maybe I started on The Incomparable before Hypercritical. I don’t remember.
⏹️ ▶️ John Like, this is where you keep good records of things because no one else cares about these things. Someone says, when did you start podcasting? Honestly,
⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t know. Like I can look it up and I can think I can determine that I think I was on The Incomparable
⏹️ ▶️ John before the first episode of Hypercritical, but I might’ve been on another ad hoc podcast
⏹️ ▶️ John with Dan Benjamin before that?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco You were probably on his interview show.
⏹️ ▶️ John forgot. Yeah, I don’t
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco know, we’re all too old. But
⏹️ ▶️ John all I’m saying is I think I started podcasting around the same time as Marco.
⏹️ ▶️ John So I’ve been podcasting for a similar amount of time. And
⏹️ ▶️ John the reason I’m reflecting on this, I think about how did I get into podcasting? Because I’ve
⏹️ ▶️ John been a programmer since I left school. since even before I left school, that’s been my profession. I still do it professionally.
⏹️ ▶️ John And I had been in the sort of Mac web
⏹️ ▶️ John world from the Usenet groups to eventual websites and web forums. And eventually
⏹️ ▶️ John I started writing for Ars Technica and did all the Mac OS X reviews. So I was in the tech world as well.
⏹️ ▶️ John So I was a programmer, I did tech writing, but podcasting is another thing I can’t really
⏹️ ▶️ John remember. The first podcast I remember listening to though, The first one that had made an impression on me was, uh, Murr
⏹️ ▶️ John Lafferty’s podcast called I should be writing. Uh, as the
⏹️ ▶️ John tagline of the show went back when I started listening to it, it was. A podcast
⏹️ ▶️ John for wannabe fiction writers by a wannabe fiction writer. Uh, at the time Murr Lafferty wanted
⏹️ ▶️ John to be a fiction writer and she was trying and she made a podcast where it was literally just
⏹️ ▶️ John her and a microphone. And that was it. No, no music
⏹️ ▶️ John beds. No intro music, no theme song, just Merle Lafferty and a microphone.
⏹️ ▶️ John And she would talk about the struggles of being a writer, different things about being a writer, how to plan your stories,
⏹️ ▶️ John what to work on in your writing, the value of writer’s workshops, how to try to get an agent.
⏹️ ▶️ John She wasn’t coming in as an expert because she was a wannabe fiction writer. She was working through these things
⏹️ ▶️ John in real time and podcasting about them. Eventually, the show tagline had to change because she became
⏹️ ▶️ John a published author. She just kept doing the podcast so on and so forth But anyway, I would listen to her in the car
⏹️ ▶️ John as an alternative to listening to NPR or whatever I was listening to on my radio because you know,
⏹️ ▶️ John I had music I think I had music on my iPod at this point, but I you know My cars didn’t have Bluetooth and so
⏹️ ▶️ John it was kind of hard to hook up So I would listen to NPR and when I didn’t want to listen to that say during pledge week or whatever
⏹️ ▶️ John Pledge month pledge decade. I will listen to I should be writing. I didn’t want to be a fiction writer particularly,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know I enjoyed writing and I enjoyed hearing people talk about it, but I just love listening to her talk
⏹️ ▶️ John about I mean She’s got a great voice for podcast. It’s very calming. It’s very soothing. She’s
⏹️ ▶️ John she was you know, very sort of Thoughtful
⏹️ ▶️ John and you know spoke about writing with a lot of feeling but
⏹️ ▶️ John with you know, a lot of good insights and What sounded to me like
⏹️ ▶️ John good advice for all I knew about about fiction writing And so that was one aspect
⏹️ ▶️ John of it. And the second one was at this time, I was going into the office like we all used to and
⏹️ ▶️ John working as a programmer. And we had like, this was one of the smaller companies I was at. It was like maybe
⏹️ ▶️ John one or 200 people by the end and started off significantly smaller. And we had a lunchroom and we’d all sit
⏹️ ▶️ John at the lunch table and eat whatever we packed as our lunch and just hang out and talk about things. And inevitably we’d end up
⏹️ ▶️ John talking about, I’d talk with my friends about tech stuff, but we’d talk about anything. was a lot like a lunchroom
⏹️ ▶️ John at school where maybe if you sat with your nerdy friends, you got to talk about like D and
⏹️ ▶️ John D or cars or baseball or whatever it was you were nerdy about. But if you were at a more sort of, you
⏹️ ▶️ John know, general audience table, like on a field trip or something, you just talk about whatever anyone wanted to talk about.
⏹️ ▶️ John And we’d have great conversations at this table about stuff like this. And as you can imagine me being
⏹️ ▶️ John a big blabbermouth from hearing me on all these podcasts, sometimes I’d go off in a big rant about something and it doesn’t take much, you
⏹️ ▶️ John really about refrigerators or computers or pizza or bagels or like, you know, whatever it would be.
⏹️ ▶️ John And sometimes I’d go off on one of those and I’d see that I had a little audience
⏹️ ▶️ John of people who was listening to me do this. And then I would quickly shut up because I would be embarrassed or whatever.
⏹️ ▶️ John But I did take note that occasionally I could entertain an audience
⏹️ ▶️ John with the thing that I do that I now do on podcasts. So these two things combined, Hey,
⏹️ ▶️ John I like listening to Murr Lafferty talk about a topic that I’m not even that interested in just because I
⏹️ ▶️ John find it entertaining and soothing and interesting. Right. Uh,
⏹️ ▶️ John and also I have things that I can talk about. I’m writing articles on Ars Technica and people
⏹️ ▶️ John are reading those and I know a lot about a couple of specific tech topics.
⏹️ ▶️ John Maybe I could combine those two things. And it was a certain point where for doing both these things combining, I said,
⏹️ ▶️ John I think podcasting is a thing I might be able to do, right? Because I’d heard
⏹️ ▶️ John people podcasting and I’d had experiences in real life where occasionally people would be entertained by me
⏹️ ▶️ John talking about things. And so that sort of culminated in, you know, however it happened that
⏹️ ▶️ John it probably, knowing me, what probably happened is Dan Benjamin probably reached out to me and said, hey, do you want to be on a podcast?
⏹️ ▶️ John Because like so many things in my life, I need to be drag kicking and screaming into things that are good for me, right? So
⏹️ ▶️ John I’ve always been very bad about sort of putting myself forward. Hell, it happened in Ars Technica. I don’t think I’ve told
⏹️ ▶️ John the story a million times or not, but like I was active in the Ars Technica forums
⏹️ ▶️ John and Ken Fisher, who founded Ars Technica, reached out to me and said, “‘Hey, would you like to write something
⏹️ ▶️ John for Ars Technica?’ I didn’t go banging on his door and say, “‘I wanna write articles for Ars Technica.’”
⏹️ ▶️ John Almost everything that’s good that happened to me in my life has happened because someone else has dragged me into it, which is why, anyway.
⏹️ ▶️ John That’s just the way I am. So I’m assuming that’s what happened with podcasting as well. But at that point I was
⏹️ ▶️ John primed to jump on that because I had already been thinking about the idea that I think podcasting
⏹️ ▶️ John could be a thing that I could do. And sure enough, 10 years later, it seems like it is
⏹️ ▶️ John a thing that I can do.
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco And I’m glad I
⏹️ ▶️ John did, even if I had to be dragged into a kicking and screaming. Not really kicking and screaming, but I had to be, I
⏹️ ▶️ John had to be like a vampire. I had to be invited in. Let’s just put it that way. And
⏹️ ▶️ John now I’m here and you can’t get rid of me.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey It’s funny how different and yet similar all three of our paths
⏹️ ▶️ Casey into this were. You know, for me, I had been aware of podcasting,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey but I don’t think I’d ever listened to a podcast until this friend of mine
⏹️ ▶️ Casey from when I was a child, literally a child, who I think I had started to talk to again
⏹️ ▶️ Casey around this time, but this guy, his name was Marco Arment, and he started this podcast called Build
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and Analyze, and I thought, well, you know, I knew Marco, and I’m getting to know him at this
⏹️ ▶️ Casey point again, I forget where this was in our grand reintroduction to each other.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I believe I was instant messaging my friend, Blista.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey How can we forget? On
⏹️ ▶️ Casey But one way or another, this was around the time that Marco and I, because we were as close
⏹️ ▶️ Casey as two kids who saw each other once a year could be when we were like 10. And then,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey not in an angry way, we just fell out of contact for a long time. And then around this time, we started to
⏹️ ▶️ Casey talk again and again. I don’t remember if we were talking already and then Build and Analyze started, or if Build and Analyze
⏹️ ▶️ Casey was what spurred me into reaching out or whatever the case may be, maybe it was Marco that reached out, I don’t know. But the point is,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey we were getting to know each other again, and this guy, Marco Armand, who I know, he’s a friend, he’s doing a podcast, I
⏹️ ▶️ Casey should check that out. And he does the same sort of work that I do for a living in a different environment.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I was all in on the Windows stuff at the time, but it’s still writing code, so I should check that out.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And as so many people have said to us, once you start listening to Build and Analyze,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Marco’s constantly name dropping Hypercritical. And then once you start listening to Hypercritical, you get constant name drops
⏹️ ▶️ Casey of the talk show. And so it does not take long before every waking minute of your day is spent
⏹️ ▶️ Casey listening to other people talk. And then, you know, I would listen to the show
⏹️ ▶️ Casey to build and analyze. I would listen live and I would be one of the jackals in the chat room. And I remember, even though Marco
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and I are friends and were at the time, you know, every great once in a while, he would mention my name or even more impressively,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey because I didn’t know him, John would mention my name. my freaking heart would beat out of my chest.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Because like, oh my god, oh my god, oh my god, they know I exist. Of course Marco knows I exist. We’re
⏹️ ▶️ Casey friends, but nevertheless, when you hear it in the context of the show, it’s like, ah, oh, oh my god, what’s happening? And
⏹️ ▶️ Casey so that was circa 2010, 2011, something like that. And then I guess it was the end of 2012 or thereabouts
⏹️ ▶️ Casey when I started needling Marco about doing a car show with me. And I’ve told the story several times
⏹️ ▶️ Casey before, probably on this very program. But Marco had the genuinely brilliant idea of saying, Well,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey you know, I stopped building analyze and John Syracuse had just stopped hypercritical
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and he likes car stuff. I wonder if the three of us could do something together. And,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and that’s when neutral started and I still stand by neutral. It was a disaster, but it was
⏹️ ▶️ Casey a beautiful, beautiful, beautiful disaster, and I loved it so much. And, and again, Marco in
⏹️ ▶️ Casey a stroke of brilliance realized, well, when we stopped recording neutral and just
⏹️ ▶️ Casey started goofing off about the things that allegedly we weren’t there to talk about, which always ended
⏹️ ▶️ Casey up being nerdy tech stuff. Well, Marco put, what was it, on SoundCloud the first few episodes went up, is that right?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And then it turns out that we actually know things about technology and don’t really know squat
⏹️ ▶️ Casey about cars. And fast forward a couple of years, three, four years, and suddenly this is my job.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Like it’s utterly bananas, the path that I have taken from
⏹️ ▶️ Casey being one of those people in the chat room just trying to get noticed. And I mean that both
⏹️ ▶️ Casey in a self-deprecating and also a literal way. But now, you know, I’m hosting
⏹️ ▶️ Casey what I like to think of, at least for our, you know, little pond, a relatively popular and important program.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And it’s, it’s amazing to me that this is how I can put food on the table and how
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I can feed my family and how I can spend my time. And the three of us are
⏹️ ▶️ Casey indescribably lucky that any of you are listening, much less any of you who have spent
⏹️ ▶️ Casey money on either an advertiser or, or membership or what have you. It’s
⏹️ ▶️ Casey wild. And it’s scary to see these changes. It’s scary for me because I have very chicken little
⏹️ ▶️ Casey tendencies. It’s scary for me to see all of this big money coming into big time
⏹️ ▶️ Casey podcasting. And while I do think a rising tide raises all boats, you know, and having
⏹️ ▶️ Casey serial takeoff in such a big way, God, I’ve been poisoned. I almost said so bigly. Oh, God,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I know. It’s so bad. Having serial takeoff in such a big way is helpful to all of
⏹️ ▶️ Casey us, right? Because if you’re around the proverbial water cooler
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and everyone is saying you have to listen to Serial, this podcast, it’s amazing. Well, just like I said,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Serial isn’t about to name check the Accidental Tech Podcast, but if you find this
⏹️ ▶️ Casey thing that you enjoy, and if you happen to enjoy Apple stuff, I like to think that
⏹️ ▶️ Casey ATP is one of a handful of shows that’ll bubble to the top of the list of things you should check out.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And so it may be that probably more listeners than we would expect came to us in an indirect
⏹️ ▶️ Casey way from serial and It scares me to see what’s going on with Spotify. It scares me to see these exclusive
⏹️ ▶️ Casey It scares me to see this this seemingly inevitable March toward
⏹️ ▶️ Casey the Facebook Facebookification Googleification if you will of big
⏹️ ▶️ Casey data of big data advertising and tracking and so on and obviously we have zero intention
⏹️ ▶️ Casey of ever doing that and That’s part of the reason why membership is the thing but it scares me to think about that
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And I hope that it remains exactly as Marco describes, where they’re over there, we’re over here,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey never the two shall meet, and everyone’s happy. But I don’t know. I
⏹️ ▶️ Casey probably say this more often than I should, to the point that I hope it’s not frustrating, but it is important to me
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that listeners know that as best I can, I recognize and we recognize
⏹️ ▶️ Casey how incredibly lucky we are that you’ll spend a couple hours of your week
⏹️ ▶️ Casey every week with us. that is an incredible, incredible honor, because
⏹️ ▶️ Casey one of the most precious things in the entire world, golly, especially as we’re learning in 2020, one of the most precious
⏹️ ▶️ Casey things that we all have is time. And to spend your time with us is such a compliment, and
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I know all three of us are deeply appreciative. And it’s extremely cool. And I know I speak for
⏹️ ▶️ Casey me, and I’m pretty sure I speak for the other guys, that if you’ll have us, we’ll be doing this in another 10 years. So
⏹️ ▶️ Casey please don’t get sick of us, because we’d like to keep doing it. Actually, one last thing to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco add, because Casey, you kind of touched on this, like with the serialization of podcasting and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco all these big hits and the comedians who have all these massive audiences, one major
⏹️ ▶️ Marco thing that has changed is that I no longer have to explain what podcasting is to people. Like,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it used, like, you know, 10 years ago, you know, people would ask me what I do, and oh yeah, I make an app and I do some
⏹️ ▶️ Marco podcasts. They’d be like, what? And even when I started Overcast, because I started Overcast
⏹️ ▶️ Marco before Serial, not by much, it was like a year before, but it was still before that big wave
⏹️ ▶️ Marco started. And so I’ve had to explain so many times to so many people like in
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the regular world who are not nerds, what podcasts are. And I largely
⏹️ ▶️ Marco have stopped having to do that in the last few years, because they’re so big now. Such a
⏹️ ▶️ Marco large portion of at least Americans so far listen to podcasts. It’s still, podcasting
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is still very heavily skewed towards the English speaking world.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco very, very heavily like North America and the English speaking countries of Europe and Australia,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Canada. So it’s still very much like an Anglo-centric,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco what’s the word for that? An English-centric thing. But among the people
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I interact with around here in the English speaking North American world, podcasting
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is so ubiquitous, podcast listening is so ubiquitous that I no longer have to explain what the heck it is to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco almost every single person I meet. And that’s pretty great. And that has only come
⏹️ ▶️ Marco because of those massive shows that attract those giant audiences that are way, way
⏹️ ▶️ Marco bigger than ours. So again, as long as their world doesn’t end
⏹️ ▶️ Marco up crushing our world accidentally, then I’m happy that they can exist
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and we can exist and everything’s good.
Sponsor: Purple (code atp10)
⏹️ ▶️ Marco We are sponsored this week by Purple. Now look, you can throw some
⏹️ ▶️ Marco bedding on a bunch of different mattresses and sure they’re all going to look alike. The same goes for pillows.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco But if you peel away the layers, look at what’s inside, you’ll see they aren’t all created equally.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And that’s what makes every Purple pillow and mattress unlike anything you’ve ever slept
⏹️ ▶️ Marco on. The Purple Grid is this technology that sets the Purple mattress apart from every
⏹️ ▶️ Marco other mattress. It’s a patented comfort technology that instantly adapts to your body’s natural
⏹️ ▶️ Marco shape and sleep style. With over 1,800 open air channels designed
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to neutralize body heat, Purple provides a cooling effect other mattresses can’t replicate.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And this cutting-edge technology doesn’t stop with the mattresses. Every Purple pillow is
⏹️ ▶️ Marco also engineered with the grid for total head and neck support and absolute airflow, so you’re
⏹️ ▶️ Marco always on the cool side of the pillow. Purple’s proprietary technology
⏹️ ▶️ Marco has been innovating comfort for over 15 years. And you can see this, look
⏹️ ▶️ Marco at their reviews, look around the web, you will see people back this up, people
⏹️ ▶️ Marco who have tried multiple mattresses, they always rate Purple really highly.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I did the research, you can do the research, you’ll see the exact same thing. You can try
⏹️ ▶️ Marco every Purple product risk-free with free shipping and free returns.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And Purple has financing available as low as 0% APR for qualified customers.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Experience the Purple grid and you will sleep like never before. Go to purple.com
⏹️ ▶️ Marco slash ATP10 and use promo code ATP10. For a limited time, you’ll get 10% off
⏹️ ▶️ Marco any order of $200 or more. That’s purple.com slash ATP10. Promo code ATP10 for 10% off any
⏹️ ▶️ Marco order of $200 or more. Terms apply. Thank
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you so much to Purple for sponsoring our show.
Scaling the M1
⏹️ ▶️ Casey So you guys have spent more time with your MacBooks, Air, MacBook Airs, however we pronounce it. Anything
⏹️ ▶️ Casey new you would like to share?
⏹️ ▶️ John I have one new thing. I think someone asked about this. It was going to be an Ask ATV, but it’s a shorty. Someone asked,
⏹️ ▶️ John is PowerNap still present on the M1 Macs?
⏹️ ▶️ John PowerNap is the feature that’s been around for a while on Mac OS X that basically says when you put
⏹️ ▶️ John your Mac to sleep, occasionally it will wake up but not really wake up and do
⏹️ ▶️ John a bunch of things mostly through Apple apps that you might want it to do like it’ll do a time machine backup,
⏹️ ▶️ John it’ll check your mail or whatever, but you know as far as you can tell your computer is
⏹️ ▶️ John still asleep like it won’t turn on the screen. Some Macs at various times have tried not to turn on the fans or to turn
⏹️ ▶️ John them on very low RPM and it will you know basically do some activity when you think
⏹️ ▶️ John I think it’s basically sleeping in sort of a low power state and then go back to real, for realsies sleep, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John One of the items on the slides at the presentation introducing the M1 Max
⏹️ ▶️ John was like, what was like always on computer?
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco Always on processor.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, always on processor. And if you have an iOS device, iPhone or iPad or something, you know
⏹️ ▶️ John there’s no power nap mode. Like, yeah, when you hit the quote unquote power button, the screen
⏹️ ▶️ John turns off, but what determines whether your mail gets checked as whether the mail
⏹️ ▶️ John application has background processing turned on and setting so on and so forth the idea being that
⏹️ ▶️ John You don’t put your phone to sleep It’s always kind of in this
⏹️ ▶️ John in this same state It knows whether the screen is on or not And it knows whether an app should be allowed to run
⏹️ ▶️ John in the background and the iOS versions that support that or not But there is no mode where it’s like a sleep and nothing
⏹️ ▶️ John is running to save power, right? It’s got an always on processor. I guess is what Apple’s calling it, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John So the answer to this question on the M1 Macs as far as I can tell any energy or saver slash battery preference
⏹️ ▶️ John pane There is nothing that mentions power nap the place where it should be There is just no checkbox for it because as far as
⏹️ ▶️ John I can tell it’s not needed in the same way that it’s not needed On iOS devices now Mac
⏹️ ▶️ John OS is not iOS and there’s no sort of setting screen where you can enable background processing or whatever so
⏹️ ▶️ John I’m not entirely sure how what the interaction is between the OS and the applications because
⏹️ ▶️ John other than to know that it seems like the Mac never goes to sleep sleep
⏹️ ▶️ John where nothing is happening whatsoever. It must go into a low low power mode
⏹️ ▶️ John where maybe it just uses one of the efficiency cores or something and in that mode if mail
⏹️ ▶️ John is running or if there’s a background demon that checks mail it seems like it will execute. I
⏹️ ▶️ John don’t know the technical details of it I’m just guessing but I can tell you that I could not find a power nap check
⏹️ ▶️ John box Power nap checkbox. So I think this is part of the always on processor thing
⏹️ ▶️ John that that is a complication that is no longer necessary now that Apple is making
⏹️ ▶️ John the guts of these things.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Marco, you tweeted earlier that your iMac Pro has been a breath of fresh
⏹️ ▶️ Casey air to return to, and you are so happy to have this actually fast computer and not have to be
⏹️ ▶️ Casey slumming it on your MacBook Air. Did I read that right?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It certainly is taking many breaths of fresh air
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey through its fans that I keep hearing.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Is it really that much faster, the MacBook Air?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I mean, the reality is like the speed difference, yes, it is faster. Like the MacBook Air is
⏹️ ▶️ Marco indeed faster. Most of the time I’m not doing, I’m not like maxing it out constantly
⏹️ ▶️ Marco end to end such that I would notice the speed difference, honestly. I do notice the fan difference,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco but I’m also just really happy to be back on my iMac Pro after two weeks away because
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it has all my stuff on it. It’s a giant screen and has my nice split keyboard in front of it. It’s my main computer.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco You know, when you’re away from your main computer and you get back, it’s nice. And I was able to just plow through
⏹️ ▶️ Marco massive amounts of work today of just like, you know, catch up admin work that I’ve been, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco putting off or missing the ability to do. So I’ve just been, I’ve been getting a lot
⏹️ ▶️ Marco done on it. So I’m happy with this computer. I do wish I could figure out the fan noise thing. It does seem to be
⏹️ ▶️ Marco this intermittent thing probably caused by some dust wedges and very hard to reach places that I won’t
⏹️ ▶️ Marco be able to get out without like disassembling the entire computer, which I’m not going to do. So,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know, I do wish I could solve that problem because I know that when the iMac Pro is working normally, like when
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it was new, I didn’t have any fan noise, like almost ever. It was
⏹️ ▶️ Marco nearly impossible to hear them. So, you know, I think it’s just mostly because it’s old and full of dust, but-
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Like us. I, yeah, but I am going to,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’m very much looking forward to what a future iMac can be. Like,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I don’t think they need to do that much from what the MacBook Air is now to make
⏹️ ▶️ Marco larger computers that are performance competitive. There are some areas that I would like to mention quickly. Like,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know, I think, because we’re seeing a lot, a lot of speculation
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and worrying or excitement about, you know, how do you
⏹️ ▶️ Marco take the M1 and make bigger, faster, more powerful, more expandable computers with it?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And we’re also having a bunch of these new interviews that are being done by Apple execs
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that are constantly, like one of the biggest things everyone’s talking about, especially
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the Apple people, is the unified memory architecture and quite how much that matters. And
⏹️ ▶️ Marco so there is this massive question of like, okay, we know that they can make
⏹️ ▶️ Marco really incredible computers at the low end with this chip. We know that as long as they cap
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the RAM at 16 gigs for now And as long as they don’t need massive GPU
⏹️ ▶️ Marco power or more than four of these high-performance cores, we know they can make something amazing.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco But how do you scale that up to the other models in the lineup? The
⏹️ ▶️ Marco number one question I have is how do you scale the RAM? That’s
⏹️ ▶️ Marco number one. Because the GPU is almost as important
⏹️ ▶️ Marco as the RAM in terms of how do you make larger machines. But the RAM, I think, is
⏹️ ▶️ Marco probably the harder question to answer. Apple engineered this giant Mac Pro
⏹️ ▶️ Marco case, this whole new Mac Pro. And again, when
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I talked to the Apple people in that demo room after the Mac Pro unveiling,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I talked to a few different people there. And you can also look at some of the comments that have been made publicly by people
⏹️ ▶️ Marco like Craig Federighi you know, like in that machine’s PR release
⏹️ ▶️ Marco cycle, that really make it seem like they did not design that entire machine to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco be a one-off. And so if you think, okay, well, somehow,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the M1 Mac world is going to have to scale up
⏹️ ▶️ Marco through the rest of the lineup, or at least similar-ish products in the rest of the lineup. You know, I don’t know if there’s necessarily
⏹️ ▶️ Marco gonna be an iMac Pro, but I know there’s gonna be an iMac, and I know there’s gonna be some kind of Mac Pro,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And it’s probably going to be very similar to the current one in general dimensions and capabilities and stuff.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So how do you do that? We’ve also seen in the teardowns
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of these new Macs, the way they put the RAM quote on package
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is really, you know, it’s next to the processor. It’s not part of the processor.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And we actually heard from a number of people who know more about chip design and manufacturing than I do who said
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that it almost it would almost make no sense at all to ever
⏹️ ▶️ Marco move the RAM on die like where it’s part of the same silicon wafer and it
⏹️ ▶️ Marco gets punched out from the same wafer as the CPU because apparently the way you make DRAM
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is so radically different than the way you make logic chips at that silicon level
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that it would be a ridiculous process and it would be inefficient in tons of ways
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and it would be like really stupid to try to make DRAM and logic chips as part
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of the exact same chip. So it’s going to be a separate thing. And there’s, so
⏹️ ▶️ Marco there is already a separation between the CPU, you know, or like the chip and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the RAM. There is some kind of interconnect between them. And I don’t know, I don’t know enough about modern
⏹️ ▶️ Marco memory bandwidth and interfaces to know for sure, like how possible
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is it to just make that interconnect bigger and support four RAM chips
⏹️ ▶️ Marco instead of two or eight or 16? How much would that cost in terms of memory
⏹️ ▶️ Marco bandwidth or speed or, you know, would we be reasonably
⏹️ ▶️ Marco able to make some kind of like RAM in a socket that we have like on the Mac Pro
⏹️ ▶️ Marco or still even on the high-end iMacs? Like, can we have socketed RAM still
⏹️ ▶️ Marco in this new world or are the interfaces between the pins in the socket
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and the CPU, are those too slow? would that cost too much performance? So there’s this huge open
⏹️ ▶️ Marco question of how the heck we scale these things. You could also just take the current chip
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and just make it a lot bigger, but then you’d run into some pretty significant cost issues with
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the manufacturing and yields of that chip. So I think the way they’re
⏹️ ▶️ Marco probably going to have to scale it, you know, we speculated a couple weeks ago,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I said, I think they’re gonna definitely move the RAM out to its own area of the board,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and possibly also move the GPUs out. And John said, definitely not
⏹️ ▶️ Marco GPUs, I think, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t recall this conversation, but I can tell you what I think now. For
⏹️ ▶️ John the Mac Pro level machines, you’re thinking?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’m thinking it’s probably for everything above what we have now. I think it’s gonna be for
⏹️ ▶️ Marco all of the laptops that might have a discrete GPU in the past.
⏹️ ▶️ John Oh yeah, no, no, I think, yeah. So this is coming back to me, yeah. No, I think there is no way the GPU
⏹️ ▶️ John is moving out of the system on a chip for even their biggest, meanest laptop. I feel like the 16-inch MacBook
⏹️ ▶️ John Pro, their top-of-the-line laptop will have a quote-unquote integrated GPU, it will just be bigger.
⏹️ ▶️ John And I say that not because I think it’s a limitation, I say that because I think they can meet their performance requirements.
⏹️ ▶️ John They can make a really, really good, powerful GPU with it being integrated, by just
⏹️ ▶️ John making it bigger and putting fans on it.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I look at the size of this chip. such a massive amount of the area on the chip
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is GPU area. And another massive amount of it is the high performance CPU cores.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And so if we think like, how does this chip scale up to the next level of performance for the higher end machines?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Do they add two more of the high end CPU core maybe or four more even?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Do they double the GPU core count? So it has double the GPU performance? Like that is roughly
⏹️ ▶️ Marco what we’d be talking about in terms of, you know, the performance gaps between the model lines that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco we have had to date. We don’t know, that’s a big assumption. Maybe the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco next generation 16-inch MacBook Pro isn’t gonna be twice as fast as the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Air. It doesn’t have to be, technically. Like, you know, Apple can design these things however they want,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco basically, but certainly the customer base has certain expectations and things have
⏹️ ▶️ Marco been done a certain way for a long time. And so we kind of expect that you would
⏹️ ▶️ Marco probably in the large laptop and in the iMac and definitely the Mac
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Pro, we expect we’re probably gonna have much higher core counts for the CPU,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco eight core, 12 core, for the high performance cores, I mean. And you look at the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco GPU and you look at the performance of how it compares to discrete GPUs today
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and how you might be able to scale that up to achieve something like
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a 16-inch MacBook Pro or a high-end iMac or a Mac Pro customer would demand.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And I don’t see how you keep this as one chip. I don’t see it scaling, because you would
⏹️ ▶️ Marco need to make the chip so massive, they wouldn’t be able to manufacture any of them. Like, it would be ridiculous
⏹️ ▶️ Marco with yields and size and everything. So I think there’s gotta
⏹️ ▶️ Marco be a separation of probably both
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the RAM expanding so it can accommodate way more RAM chips, not necessarily
⏹️ ▶️ Marco being socketed. I think the idea of having the RAM be
⏹️ ▶️ Marco just in regular RAM slots that you can pop out and put in a stick from Crucial
⏹️ ▶️ Marco if you want to, I think those days are over. Even with the Mac Pro, I don’t see that coming back because
⏹️ ▶️ Marco what we’re seeing is that when they make the RAM integrated, truly integrated the way it is now,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it can be way faster. Like they have just massive amounts of bandwidth to the RAM and that’s a big part
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of why the M1 is so fast. So I don’t see them giving
⏹️ ▶️ Marco up the RAM speed necessarily, but I also don’t
⏹️ ▶️ Marco see them sticking with the way it is now where it’s just kind of glued onto the package like as one,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know, very, very small real estate thing. I don’t see that scaling to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a Mac Pro that supports hundreds of gigs of RAM. I don’t see how they can do that.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco They just need more chips, simple as that. They need more chips. They need more SSD chips
⏹️ ▶️ Marco too, like to get larger storage capacities there. They need to scale these up. And so the question is,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco how do they scale these up? And you look at the real estate on the chip,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco on the main chip, and I don’t see how you meaningfully scale up
⏹️ ▶️ Marco CPU cores or GPU performance without splitting up that chip also.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So I still think that the way this scales up
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is the package gets split into everything that’s in it now
⏹️ ▶️ Marco except the GPU, which gets split off into its own thing. And
⏹️ ▶️ Marco they can do whatever they want with how they talk to each other. They can have some kind of massive
⏹️ ▶️ Marco wide bandwidth interconnect between the CPU, the GPU, and the RAM. But
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I don’t see, I mean, they know way more about chip design than I do, but I don’t see how you
⏹️ ▶️ Marco double the core count and double the GPU size and not have some massive chip
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that it was very, very hard to manufacture. And I also don’t see how you
⏹️ ▶️ Marco really scale up to achieve their high-end performance needs for their higher-end products without
⏹️ ▶️ Marco doing that, like without having twice the CPU cores and without having at least twice the GPU
⏹️ ▶️ Marco area. This remains to be seen, like how they’re gonna do this, but I also, you look at how the M1
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is turning out so far, look at what they’re talking about, what they’re really pushing. And the unified
⏹️ ▶️ Marco memory architecture does not sound like it’s gonna be optional in the future. It sounds like they’re all gonna have
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that. So somehow they’re going to keep a unified memory architecture, but they’re gonna
⏹️ ▶️ Marco have to be able to support way more RAM than they have now, more CPU cores and more GPU
⏹️ ▶️ Marco cores. So I don’t know how to do that without splitting this up.
⏹️ ▶️ John People are getting hung up, hung up a little bit on the unified memory architecture thing, like part of that is, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ John I think we said this before, like, this is, it’s a marketing term in some respects
⏹️ ▶️ John in that they’re trying to give a name to a thing that they’re doing that lots of computers used to do. Only computers
⏹️ ▶️ John used to do it to save money, but Apple is not doing it to necessarily save money, which is not
⏹️ ▶️ John having a dedicated pool of video memory. Now, it was the cheap computers would do
⏹️ ▶️ John that because it’s cheaper not to have a bunch of video memory because there’s a bunch of extra expensive chips you need
⏹️ ▶️ John to have. So we can just use system memory. Macs have done this. you go back to like classic Mac OS or 68K Macs.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, a lot of them had a quote unquote a unified memory architecture. That’s all it means is that there’s
⏹️ ▶️ John not separate VRAM. The iPhones and iPads and the ARM-based Macs
⏹️ ▶️ John are doing it for performance reasons. Most of all, part of it is cost and power savings on the
⏹️ ▶️ John iOS devices, right? But on the Mac for the similar devices that are also power constrained,
⏹️ ▶️ John they’re doing it just to save the power, but also because they can get really good performance. Like the memory bandwidth
⏹️ ▶️ John of this on package RAM is like three times what it was on the Intel machines that they replace,
⏹️ ▶️ John right? So that’s a benefit. And also it’s a benefit that you don’t have to power the extra VRAM
⏹️ ▶️ John chips and yada yada. But like you said, Margo, if you, you know, same thing with the on package
⏹️ ▶️ John RAM and everything. If you scale that up to the Mac Pro, the Mac Pro you can put 1.5 terabytes of RAM
⏹️ ▶️ John in. You, I mean, you could make a gigantic
⏹️ ▶️ John package and have 1.5 terabytes of on-package RAM, but that starts
⏹️ ▶️ John to look a little bit silly. You’d have
⏹️ ▶️ John little tiny system on a chip in the corner, and then you’d
⏹️ ▶️ John RAM chip, RAM chip, RAM chip,
⏹️ ▶️ John rows and rows of them lined up, probably lined up around it in a circle. You could do it. Like
⏹️ ▶️ John if you look at some, the modern game consoles,
⏹️ ▶️ John I always look at them, a lot of people are asking, and you made the same point, how big of a GPU can you put
⏹️ ▶️ John on Dive? Because the GPU is on Dive, the CPU, GPU, neural engine, That’s all on the system on a chip die.
⏹️ ▶️ John And then next to it in the same package are the RAM chips. How big can you double the size of the GPU on a die?
⏹️ ▶️ John Absolutely you can. Look at the Xbox Series X or PlayStation 5. They have
⏹️ ▶️ John an AMD CPU and a pretty darn big AMD GPU all on the
⏹️ ▶️ John same die. It’s a bigger die. It takes more power than the M1, that’s for sure,
⏹️ ▶️ John but you absolutely can do it. And those GPUs would more than satisfy the needs
⏹️ ▶️ John of a 16-inch MacBook Pro. Again, the 16-inch Mac Pro has never been like a gaming laptop. We’re not asking it to
⏹️ ▶️ John have the world’s highest-end GPU, but the best discrete GPU Apple has ever shipped
⏹️ ▶️ John on a laptop, I feel like Apple will have no problem matching that performance with an on-die
⏹️ ▶️ John GPU, right? iMac is potentially a different story depending on how they go in that direction. And of
⏹️ ▶️ John course, Mac Pro is an entirely different story because the Mac Pro can have four GPUs and you’re not gonna,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, or even more than that, you’re not gonna fit that onto the die because that’s where you start pushing the limits
⏹️ ▶️ John of the die size. The RAM question is interesting. If we can, I’m looking at the clock,
⏹️ ▶️ John I’m thinking we can segue this into the very first Ask ATP question, if that’s OK with
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey Casey. Nicely
⏹️ ▶️ John done. Because that’s what this first question is about. I’ll
⏹️ ▶️ John let Casey read it, because he’s good at reading questions. But then I will
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey attempt to answer it.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey All right, so Chris Choffee, Coffee, Choffee. Chris C. Writes,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey the current M1 chips have been system-on-a-chip style chips with the RAM right in the chip package. I first
⏹️ ▶️ Casey thought that was that that would be fine for lower end chips and maybe even all laptops, but for higher end
⏹️ ▶️ Casey systems like the iMac Pro, the Mac Pro surely on chip RAM can’t be the end state. This is what Marco
⏹️ ▶️ Casey was describing. Then I thought about the memory hierarchy where computers really only operate on registers and everything
⏹️ ▶️ Casey above that is just slower, but larger forms of cache, L1, L2, RAM, even SSD storage.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey So for some future Mac Pro, the ultimate Mac Pro, what if Apple keeps only eight or 16 gigs of
⏹️ ▶️ Casey fast RAM on chip, maybe even calling it an L4 cache, and then allows off-chip
⏹️ ▶️ Casey cache that just so happens to be user serviceable DRAM chips. I think this would give Apple a huge
⏹️ ▶️ Casey performance boost for the memory intensive tasks that people put hundreds of gigabytes of RAM into a Mac Pro for, while
⏹️ ▶️ Casey allowing them to keep a lower number of variants that they need to design in stock. All right, so
⏹️ ▶️ John here, this question is basically about the cache hierarchy, the memory hierarchy in computers.
⏹️ ▶️ John So a brief sort of introduction to this concept,
⏹️ ▶️ John memory is just a place to store data, but there’s memories of different speeds
⏹️ ▶️ John and different latencies inside your computer. When your CPU or GPU or whatever is
⏹️ ▶️ John doing some kind of processing, the fastest sort of closest lowest latency memory are registers and they hold
⏹️ ▶️ John small amounts of data, one or two numbers, five numbers, whatever, depending how big the registers are.
⏹️ ▶️ John And there’s 10, 20 of those depending on the execution unit. So those are registers,
⏹️ ▶️ John very, very tiny, just one, 10 or 20 one number slots or something like that, right? Above that,
⏹️ ▶️ John you have what they call level one or L1 cache, which is also on the CPU,
⏹️ ▶️ John the CPU die just like the registers. And that is a smaller amount,
⏹️ ▶️ John some amount of kilobytes or maybe a couple megabytes or whatever, depending of memory. What
⏹️ ▶️ John makes that memory fast? Registers are barely like memory. It’s like, you know, like a mail slot. You can put
⏹️ ▶️ John one or two little things in there. SIMD registers get weird because they’re a little bit wider, but they’re small, right? L1 cache
⏹️ ▶️ John is a pool of memory, but it’s a pool, a tiny pool in, you know, in the grand scheme of things.
⏹️ ▶️ John Why don’t computers just make all their memory L1 cache? If L1 cache is the fastest
⏹️ ▶️ John memory and it’s right next to the computer, why don’t they just, why not make everything out of the stuff that the black
⏹️ ▶️ John box is made of? I make the whole plan out of the black box, whatever. It’s the same answer, right? So
⏹️ ▶️ John L1 cache, first of all, you can’t put 1.5 terabytes on die, because
⏹️ ▶️ John your die can’t be that big, right? So that’s reason number one. Number two is when you make the memory that
⏹️ ▶️ John makes up L1 cache, it’s a different kind of memory than DRAM. Usually it’s SD RAM or something
⏹️ ▶️ John similar. SRAM. Or SRAM, there you go. The main difference in terms
⏹️ ▶️ John of economics that you care about is, whereas in DRAM, we try to use as
⏹️ ▶️ John few transistors as possible to store a bit of memory, SRAM will use
⏹️ ▶️ John like six or eight transistors to store one bit of memory. It’s complicated, you can look into it and see,
⏹️ ▶️ John but basically what it boils down to is it costs way more money and takes up way more space to store
⏹️ ▶️ John one bit in SRAM than it does in DRAM, right? So it’s a cost speed trade-off. So that’s your L1.
⏹️ ▶️ John L2 is also on the die, an even larger pool of memory that is more
⏹️ ▶️ John distant in terms of latency and slower than the L1, right? So there’s your cache hierarchy, registers
⏹️ ▶️ John L1, L2. Sometimes you’ll have an L3 and you could keep going what level and the whole, you
⏹️ ▶️ John know, however many levels of cache you wanna have. All about to memory and you can visualize
⏹️ ▶️ John the hard drive being another pool of caching for RAM, just even slower and more distant.
⏹️ ▶️ John The key point of the cache hierarchy is the sort of closer
⏹️ ▶️ John you get to being L1, or you know, registers or whatever, the more expensive it is, the lower
⏹️ ▶️ John latency, meaning how long does it take for me to get anything into or out of it, and the more expensive it is.
⏹️ ▶️ John And to have a useful cache hierarchy, you need gaps
⏹️ ▶️ John between them. You need your L1 to be slower, cheaper, and more distant than
⏹️ ▶️ John registers. Otherwise, why wouldn’t you just use registers? You need L2 to be slower, cheaper, and
⏹️ ▶️ John more distant than L1, right? You need RAM to be slower, cheaper, and more distant
⏹️ ▶️ John than L2. That’s the point of the hierarchy. if L1 was 2%
⏹️ ▶️ John faster than L2, you’re not doing something useful.
⏹️ ▶️ John Because having that cache hierarchy has overhead. The way cache hierarchies work is when
⏹️ ▶️ John you need some piece of memory, you can say, okay, well, let me check, is it in a register? Well, that’s not how the world works,
⏹️ ▶️ John but just imagine, you can check whether it’s in a register. If it’s not in a register, you can look in L1, but it
⏹️ ▶️ John might not be in L1. If it’s not in L1, you can check L2, but it might not be in L2, and if it’s not L2, you can check in RAM.
⏹️ ▶️ John All of that checking takes time and adds complexity, and then you have cache invalidation, which is
⏹️ ▶️ John one of the two hard problems in computer science, naming be the other one, I’m not gonna do the joke.
⏹️ ▶️ John Then you have to invalidate that memory. If something changes something in the memory, oh, but I had a cache
⏹️ ▶️ John copy of that in L2, and possibly a cache copy in L1. You need to invalidate those caches, or have some
⏹️ ▶️ John sort of cache coherency algorithm, especially when you have multiple cores sharing different pools of memory, to make sure
⏹️ ▶️ John everyone’s all on the same page in some well-defined way. So there’s a complexity to a cash hierarchy
⏹️ ▶️ John and for that complexity to be useful, you need the cash hierarchy
⏹️ ▶️ John to be distant from each other. You need them to be different. You need them to have different performance characteristics.
⏹️ ▶️ John You need the more distant ones to be bigger and cheaper to make up for the fact that they’re slower. You
⏹️ ▶️ John don’t want a cash hierarchy where each level of cash is like a tiny percentage different than the previous
⏹️ ▶️ John one. So getting back to this question, finally, What about a Mac that has like
⏹️ ▶️ John an M1 or whatever style chip where there is on package RAM that
⏹️ ▶️ John counts as kind of like an L4 cache and then the big pool of 1.5 terabytes of DRAM
⏹️ ▶️ John like in the Mac Pro in slots on the motherboard that’s slower right?
⏹️ ▶️ John So I just got done saying a little bit earlier that according to people who
⏹️ ▶️ John have measured this the memory bandwidth of the on package RAM on M1 chips
⏹️ ▶️ John is about three times as fast as it was on the Intel laptops that they’re replacing.
⏹️ ▶️ John In terms of bandwidth, like whatever it was, like 60 gigabytes per second or something, or gigabits, I forget, but whatever
⏹️ ▶️ John it is, it’s around three times as fast. Three times as fast, or three times as
⏹️ ▶️ John much bandwidth or whatever, I think is pushing the limits on
⏹️ ▶️ John an acceptable difference in performance for a cache hierarchy,
⏹️ ▶️ John Right. It’s not 1%, but it’s also not an order of magnitude. And it’s also not two orders of magnitude.
⏹️ ▶️ John Right. So I question whether, well, first of all,
⏹️ ▶️ John even if you just accept all those numbers and say, well, DRAMs say the DRAM was like the speed of the Intel DRAM, which I don’t accept
⏹️ ▶️ John as a given, but say it was, you’ve got a cash hierarchy where there’s a three X difference between,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, the L four and then the DRAM, I feel like that may not be worth
⏹️ ▶️ John the juice may not be worth that squeeze, right? That you’d want a bigger gap in the cache hierarchy. And the second
⏹️ ▶️ John thing is, getting back to Marco’s question, I don’t think there’s any reason
⏹️ ▶️ John that you can’t have an extremely high bandwidth, high performance memory bus
⏹️ ▶️ John that talks to RAM that is not on the package. Just because the Intel MacBook Pros
⏹️ ▶️ John had RAM that was three times as slow as the M1s did doesn’t mean that the $6,000 high-end
⏹️ ▶️ John Mac Pro can’t have an extremely high Bandwidth memory bus and I haven’t looked up the numbers
⏹️ ▶️ John But for all I know the current Mac pros have a higher bandwidth memory bus than the Intel Macbook Of course, which wouldn’t surprise
⏹️ ▶️ John me or whatever again I point to game consoles that have had similar problems where they need
⏹️ ▶️ John to have a large pool of memory to feed that big honking GPU it’s in their system on a chip or whatever
⏹️ ▶️ John and A lot of them do actually arrange on the motherboard a bunch of RAM chips in a circular pattern
⏹️ ▶️ John So they’re equidistant from the big giant SoC to feed it That’s not you know, there’s no
⏹️ ▶️ John dims right because it’s a game console and it’s like 500 bucks or whatever But you can have or
⏹️ ▶️ John just look at any GPU. You can have very high bandwidth pools of memory They’re not
⏹️ ▶️ John literally on the same package but are on the same board Look at a high-end GPU
⏹️ ▶️ John look at their pools of multiple gigabytes of memory You can buy GPUs with like 16 32 gigs of memory
⏹️ ▶️ John that memory has a huge extremely wide sometimes. They’re like 512 bits wide
⏹️ ▶️ John buses to and from the GPU, right? So I’m thinking that
⏹️ ▶️ John almost all the benefit you get of having the sort of on package memory chips, you can get
⏹️ ▶️ John by having an extremely expensive, extremely wide, slightly more distant, as in not on the same
⏹️ ▶️ John package, but still on the same board bus on your $6,000 plus the Mac Pro.
⏹️ ▶️ John So when I’m picturing a Mac Pro in my head, like the only reason I can imagine
⏹️ ▶️ John doing this sort of L4 based approach where that’s there’s the very fast RAM that’s close to it in the big distant pool is
⏹️ ▶️ John If Apple couldn’t justify the expense of doing a custom solution because what Chris describes
⏹️ ▶️ John Would work and be feasible I still think the gap in performance wouldn’t be big
⏹️ ▶️ John enough to justify having a separate pool of RAM but you could do it and the only
⏹️ ▶️ John reason you do it is like well, we didn’t want to make a whole new chip that that has an
⏹️ ▶️ John entirely different interface to memory. So we’ll just take what we have, which is whatever the biggest chip we
⏹️ ▶️ John had in our 16-inch MacBook Pro, and then tack on a bunch more memory and everything. But I
⏹️ ▶️ John have a feeling that’s not what Apple would do. Again, going back to Marco’s impression that he got from hearing people talk
⏹️ ▶️ John about the Mac Pro, that this beautiful giant case over here was
⏹️ ▶️ John not made in a world where Apple didn’t know it was making our Macs. They knew, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John So there has to be a plan for that. And Apple is not shy about charging a lot of money if they want to do it. So
⏹️ ▶️ John I feel like they should end up with a solution that is properly fit for
⏹️ ▶️ John a computer of this size.
⏹️ ▶️ John have to be quite as modular. It may not use standardized parts, but a
⏹️ ▶️ John solution that gives you huge amounts of RAM that are also very, very fast
⏹️ ▶️ John is definitely feasible and it doesn’t require any sort of gymnastics. The GPU question is a little bit different
⏹️ ▶️ John because Apple has in the past made computers that have a quote unquote integrated GPU and
⏹️ ▶️ John then a more distant but more powerful discrete GPUs. And they
⏹️ ▶️ John could do that again because the OS certainly supports it, but they could also just excise the GPU entirely from the system
⏹️ ▶️ John on a chip and put it entirely external on a machine like the Mac Pro because what is all that
⏹️ ▶️ John space in the Mac Pro for if not to put cards that potentially have multiple GPUs
⏹️ ▶️ John on them and tons of RAM and all that other stuff. I wanted to look up the relative
⏹️ ▶️ John die sizes and I couldn’t do it in time. Maybe I’ll do it for next week, but I was trying to look up, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ John how much bigger can the die get? The M1.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, I tried looking this up actually.
⏹️ ▶️ John Do you have a, I found the Intel die size, but I couldn’t find the M1 die size. My impression is looking at the iFixit
⏹️ ▶️ John thing is, the M1 die, like it’s not anywhere near
⏹️ ▶️ John the limits of what is reasonable to put on a single die. So if I imagine
⏹️ ▶️ John it in a Mac Pro type system, where you’ve removed the RAM from the package and also remove the GPU,
⏹️ ▶️ John there’s plenty, and again, look at the cooling solution that the Mac Pro case has available
⏹️ ▶️ John to it. It has so much available cooling for a chip that so far barely needs
⏹️ ▶️ John a wimpy laptop fan. You could make, I feel like you can make the M1
⏹️ ▶️ John four times as big, ditch the RAM off the package and ditch the GPU off the package and still not put
⏹️ ▶️ John a dent in this thing’s CPU cooling capacity, right? So I think lots
⏹️ ▶️ John of things are possible depending on how far Apple is willing to go. And the Mac Pro
⏹️ ▶️ John is the machine that has the least ambiguity about what they’re going to do because
⏹️ ▶️ John we know its whole purpose in life is to have huge capacity. So whatever it takes to get huge capacity,
⏹️ ▶️ John Apple will do that, right? The real machines in my question are what do they do with the iMac? Because the iMac
⏹️ ▶️ John you could squint and say, well, whatever you did for the 16-inch MacBook Pro, do it for the iMac. But then again, what about the iMac Pro?
⏹️ ▶️ John then maybe we can do something in between. It’s those type of machines where I’m interested in how they’re going to
⏹️ ▶️ John make that trade off between just do what you did in the laptops, but more and faster.
⏹️ ▶️ John You could end up running into limits there because if you want a GPU that is bigger than you could fit in any
⏹️ ▶️ John laptop, iMac Pro can support that. It’s got the cooling solution for it, but
⏹️ ▶️ John you do eventually run into the limit of the quote unquote integrated GPU. As far as we know, like what’s
⏹️ ▶️ John the biggest GPU we’ve ever seen shoved onto a system on a chip? It’s probably this current generation of consoles and
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s pretty darn big But you can get bigger and faster GPUs discrete. No problem whatsoever.
⏹️ ▶️ John So That that’s really real question is and that’s just a trade-off that Apple is going to make
⏹️ ▶️ John but I think on the top-end Mac Pro There’s no reason that they can’t have
⏹️ ▶️ John discrete GPUs Discrete RAM and still have amazing performance. It’s just a sequest
⏹️ ▶️ John just a question of money. How do you make very high bandwidth? with high-speed
⏹️ ▶️ John RAM interfaces, you give the chip more power and you spend more money on intertacts
⏹️ ▶️ John and you charge more money for the product and Apple’s really good at that. So I have some confidence that they will
⏹️ ▶️ John sort this out for the Mac Pro, especially if you consider, well, I mean, again, don’t try
⏹️ ▶️ John to associate price with parts in the Mac Pro, it won’t add up for you. But those Xeons they buy from Intel
⏹️ ▶️ John are ridiculously expensive and they don’t have any GPU in them that Apple is using in their Mac Pros.
⏹️ ▶️ John They don’t have a neural engine inside them of any of that stuff in there, right? And they cost so much money.
⏹️ ▶️ John Apple, you know, will get, Apple will get its M-whatevers for the Mac Pro, they’ll get them at cost because they make them themselves,
⏹️ ▶️ John right? They just have to pay Taiwan Semiconductor Margin or whatever. So I’m hoping that
⏹️ ▶️ John whatever money they save by making the system on a chip themselves for the Mac Pro, they can spend that on
⏹️ ▶️ John more exotic, faster memory interfaces and so on, and it will end up
⏹️ ▶️ John being a really good machine.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, you’ve kind of convinced me a little bit because I looked up the die size numbers
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and I don’t think anyone has measured the M1 die size yet. That’s what I couldn’t find. Yeah,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the A12X for reference is about 128 square millimeters and to put that in context,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the high Xeon core count, like the 18 core Xeons are in the 500 square millimeter
⏹️ ▶️ Marco range, so there’s certainly a long way to go between
⏹️ ▶️ Marco A12X size, which is probably a little bit smaller than the M1, but probably not that much smaller, you know, at
⏹️ ▶️ Marco 128-ish, and the Xeon’s at like 500-ish. And remember, they don’t like, it’s not like you take the M1
⏹️ ▶️ John and say, well, just stamp out four of those, because if you’re multiplying the cores, the
⏹️ ▶️ John CPU cores are not 100% of the chip. You’re not adding a second neural engine, right? You’re not adding a second
⏹️ ▶️ John image processing engine. Maybe you make those a little bit bigger, but you’re just multiplying the core.
⏹️ ▶️ John So multiplying the cores does not multiply the size of the, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ John the die area by the same amount. So if you had four times the die area, you could,
⏹️ ▶️ John you can get more than four times the cores, or you can get twice as many cores and twice as many GPU cores
⏹️ ▶️ John and still not be at a 4X scaling. So there’s breathing room there. And mostly what I think about is,
⏹️ ▶️ John again, the cooling capacity of this gigantic computer. Look at what it’s cooling now. Look how many watts
⏹️ ▶️ John the Xeon takes. How many watts does the 28 core Xeon take? To try- Many. Try
⏹️ ▶️ John to use that power budget. Try to use that power budget with Apple’s processor. How big
⏹️ ▶️ John would you have to make this die? How high would you have to clock it to absorb that power budget?
⏹️ ▶️ John And that’s assuming that Apple even wants to absorb that power budget. Like there’s so much headroom that they can basically,
⏹️ ▶️ John like I was thinking of this idly the other day, it’s like, if you took the M1 and you just put it straight
⏹️ ▶️ John into the Mac Pro’s chassis and just overclocked it until you couldn’t cool it anymore, how
⏹️ ▶️ John fast could you make it go? And I know cooling is not the only limiting factor on clocking, eventually you’re running
⏹️ ▶️ John to design constraints having to do with pipeline depth and so on and so forth, but like, I feel like they
⏹️ ▶️ John have a lot of headroom to make faster computers once you can plug them in and put a huge fan
⏹️ ▶️ John on top of it. And that’s what makes me fairly confident that technologically speaking, there’s nothing stopping
⏹️ ▶️ John them from making an amazing Mac Pro. The only thing that would be stopping them is like budgetary considerations.
⏹️ ▶️ John And we’ve talked about this before, like how exotic does Apple want to make things for the Mac?
⏹️ ▶️ John So far, the answer is not that exotic because if you squint these, they look a lot like an A14X,
⏹️ ▶️ John which is exactly the appropriate thing to do for the machines they’ve introduced, but Apple has not yet proven
⏹️ ▶️ John that they’re willing to invest a huge amount of money to make a design that
⏹️ ▶️ John is radically different than what they use in their iOS devices. There
⏹️ ▶️ John been a couple of interviews where Apple people have been insisting, no, no, this isn’t just an A14X, you see, we had to do X and Y and
⏹️ ▶️ John Z for the Mac. And mostly they refer to things like expected texture formats for the Mac
⏹️ ▶️ John operating system and stuff like that. And that’s all true. Like it’s not just a straight up like we just took an A14X
⏹️ ▶️ John and put it into a Mac. But the tweaks are minor compared to the idea
⏹️ ▶️ John of like, we made a whole new processor core or, you know, we invested
⏹️ ▶️ John in getting the GPU, you know, the whole discrete GPU interface. And by the way,
⏹️ ▶️ John you can have a discrete GPU with still have a unified memory architecture. You can have the RAM off chip and still have a unified
⏹️ ▶️ John memory architecture because unified memory architecture just means no separate VRAM. The GPU and the CPU all look the same pool
⏹️ ▶️ John of memory. There’s no reason you can’t continue to do that no matter where you put the GPU, no matter
⏹️ ▶️ John where you put the RAM. It just gets much more difficult and expensive and takes an investment because iOS
⏹️ ▶️ John devices and the M1 work nothing like that. So you’d have to invest in saying, okay, I’m gonna
⏹️ ▶️ John make a chip that supports this, you know, a huge number of PCI Express lanes and has
⏹️ ▶️ John more Thunderbolt connectivity and can drive umpteen 6K displays and knows how to talk
⏹️ ▶️ John to the external discrete Apple GPU and shares its fast RAM pool with the CPU and
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s all soldered to the board and you have to pick when you buy whether you want the one terabyte configuration or the 512 or the 64,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, whatever they come up with, right? Or they could just down the capacity. Like it’s not
⏹️ ▶️ John outside the realm of possibility that the first ARM-based Mac Pro does not support 1.4 terabytes of RAM and Apple just
⏹️ ▶️ John has a story for you about how it doesn’t need it. I can see that happening too because it’s all soldered to the board and the
⏹️ ▶️ John biggest config they have is a 768 and yada yada, like, but that would still be an amazing
⏹️ ▶️ John machine. So yeah, and as we all suspect like that will probably be the
⏹️ ▶️ John last machine they introduced And in the meantime, we’ll get to see how much of an appetite apple has
⏹️ ▶️ John to to crank this thing up and to make more exotic designs with things like the iMac which I think is
⏹️ ▶️ John the first point where we could reasonably assume That the machine could support something other than
⏹️ ▶️ John An m1 style thing where everything is in the same place. It’s just bigger I think they’re going to do that all
⏹️ ▶️ John the way through the whole laptops then the iMac is the first and maybe just the iMac Pro if they have one is the
⏹️ ▶️ John first opportunity where they Probably should consider doing something other
⏹️ ▶️ John than exactly the same thing they’ve done for laptops, but bigger
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Marco how how much RAM did your prior? MacBook I guess your MacBook Pro
⏹️ ▶️ Casey how much RAM does that have is it 32 gigs? Nope 16
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’ve been getting 16 for a while. Okay, so wait, I think something actually
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John Wait a minute
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s whatever the stock configuration is at the slightly higher than base level. Let
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey I don’t even know. Move on. I’ll answer
⏹️ ▶️ Casey it in a second. All right. So the reason I bring this up is because I
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco agree… How do I
⏹️ ▶️ Casey not know? Because it ultimately doesn’t really matter. I agree
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that especially the Mac Pro probably needs a metric crap
⏹️ ▶️ Casey ton… 16. Okay. of RAM for certain use cases. You know, not
⏹️ ▶️ Casey most people, certainly not the three of us, but in certain use cases, you probably do want to have a metric crap ton
⏹️ ▶️ Casey of RAM in the Mac Pro. But for everyone except those, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey oddballs, I keep thinking about how I heard a lot of
⏹️ ▶️ Casey people like me complaining about 16 gigs of RAM as the maximum in these new M1
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Macs, but I haven’t heard anyone who has had one and
⏹️ ▶️ Casey used one really complained about it not having enough RAM, which is many
⏹️ ▶️ Casey words to say, I don’t know if we should really judge them the same, these
⏹️ ▶️ Casey M1 Macs or Apple Silicon Macs. I don’t know if we should judge them the same way we judge Intel Macs. Because
⏹️ ▶️ Casey my, my 13 inch MacBook Pro is 32 gigs of RAM. And I think that that’s probably as low as I would want
⏹️ ▶️ Casey to go on an Intel machine in 2020 or 2021 as we’re almost there. But on a
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Apple Silicon on the Mac, I would probably entertain 16 now that I know a little more.
⏹️ ▶️ John So I’m gonna push back on this. I do see this conversation happening and I tried to wave people off from her last time and I will
⏹️ ▶️ John try again. The architecture and the unified memory thing
⏹️ ▶️ John does not make Mac OS use less memory.
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey Oh no, totally.
⏹️ ▶️ John Now the code page, you know, the code segment of executables
⏹️ ▶️ John may be different size on ARM versus x86, although I wouldn’t necessarily imagine that it’ll
⏹️ ▶️ John be smaller on ARM, because x86 has variable width instructions, and ARM, I believe, does not. So that actually can make
⏹️ ▶️ John the ARM executables bigger. But anyway.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, there is the texture format thing that often needs multiple copies
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of video memory on Intel machines. But it’s still not going to be everything.
⏹️ ▶️ John I’m not saying they’re exactly the same, because they’re not. But they vary in ways that are not like,
⏹️ ▶️ John oh, well, I could get away with an 8-gig ARM Mac, but I would require a 16-gig Intel.
⏹️ ▶️ John No, there is nothing with the architecture. There’s nothing with anything that has changed in the
⏹️ ▶️ John hardware or the operating system that makes that a reality. What has changed is, you
⏹️ ▶️ John know, three times the memory bandwidth and just faster overall. And so,
⏹️ ▶️ John and, you know, the SSD in the air got twice as fast. All that can contribute to make swapping more tolerable.
⏹️ ▶️ John But in the end, if you need to have some thing that’s bigger than eight gigabytes
⏹️ ▶️ John in working memory at the same time, and you get a machine that they can’t support that and it has to swap,
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s gonna be slower. Slower in a way that you will notice and feel sad about. It’s just that most people don’t
⏹️ ▶️ John have those kinds of workloads. The closest people have is they open lots and lots of apps and the ones they don’t use get paged
⏹️ ▶️ John out and they switch to them and they get paged back in. But once they’re in, they’re working okay.
⏹️ ▶️ John So there’s nothing about like, the changed
⏹️ ▶️ John arm that is making it so suddenly you can get away with half as much RAM. And I would tell people that
⏹️ ▶️ John the trend always goes that you need more RAM in the future, not less. So don’t, certainly don’t skimp
⏹️ ▶️ John on RAM by getting an ARM-based Mac that has less RAM than you’re currently using that
⏹️ ▶️ John you think you need. And in fact, maybe consider getting more that even if you’re getting away with an eight gig
⏹️ ▶️ John machine now, get a 16 gig one anyway, just because that’s one of the best things you can do to future-proof
⏹️ ▶️ John a computer like this. And it’s not that too costly of an upgrade, right? You know, and
⏹️ ▶️ John this is in contrast to iOS, which does handle memory very differently from Mac OS, which
⏹️ ▶️ John lets iOS devices get away with having a lot less RAM than a Mac. But trust me, you would not want a
⏹️ ▶️ John Mac that handles memory the way iOS devices do because it would drive you up a wall. In general
⏹️ ▶️ John on the Mac, it’s frowned upon to kill an application out from underneath someone while they’re using it. Whereas in iOS, that’s just the way
⏹️ ▶️ John everything has always worked. So once again, I’m not saying everyone needs 16 gigs
⏹️ ▶️ John because maybe they don’t, right? And if you’re pushing the limits on eight, having
⏹️ ▶️ John faster memory bandwidth and a faster SSD in your MacBook Air is going to make it feel a lot better than an Intel machine
⏹️ ▶️ John with eight. But if you have and need 16 now, don’t get an eight gig
⏹️ ▶️ John M1 Mac, you’ll be sad.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, and I would also push back a little bit on the argument too that like, you know, people are saying, oh, maybe these
⏹️ ▶️ Marco things are so fast that machines like the Mac Pro don’t need more than X, whatever
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you guess that number to be. But the point of machines like the Mac
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Pro is to be that relief valve of like, Apple makes a decision
⏹️ ▶️ Marco for quote, almost everyone for the rest of their lineup. But something, like you
⏹️ ▶️ Marco can’t, this is the lesson we’ve learned with like Mac Pro neglect over the years. Like you can’t just
⏹️ ▶️ Marco not serve extreme needs at all in your entire product lineup when you are the only vendor
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of all hardware that your software platform can run on. Like you have to, there has
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to be something in your lineup that people who have really specialized needs
⏹️ ▶️ Marco can have those needs satisfied by. And the Mac Pro and the Mac Mini are
⏹️ ▶️ Marco those things. Like those two products combined do a huge,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco they carry a huge amount of weight from special needs. And so,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know, the reason the Mac Pro now can be configured to one and a half terabytes of
⏹️ ▶️ Marco RAM is that people need that. Not a lot of people, probably not you, definitely
⏹️ ▶️ Marco not me, but there are people out there who need it. And to them, that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco could make the difference between being able to use this computer for their intended application or
⏹️ ▶️ Marco just not being able to use a Mac at all and having to go to Linux or something, God knows what.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So we do need those extreme needs to be servable
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and served by something like the Mac Pro. even if,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know, most of us, quote, most of us or most people don’t need that. It is important to have
⏹️ ▶️ Marco those needs served somewhere. And so I am not advocating in this transition
⏹️ ▶️ Marco for things like the Mac Pro to get significantly reduced
⏹️ ▶️ Marco in their usefulness. And I hope that’s not the direction Apple goes. And
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that’s why it’s such an interesting thought experiment to try to figure out, okay, well how
⏹️ ▶️ Marco do they scale this up? You know there are so many advantages to the M1 that we see now
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that you think about how they scale it up and it’s non-trivial because like it again what we’ve been saying saying like how
⏹️ ▶️ Marco do you scale up to these massive amounts of RAM? How do you accommodate RAM slots if you still
⏹️ ▶️ Marco want to do that? Which is pretty important to that market. What about error correcting RAM? ECC
⏹️ ▶️ Marco RAM? So far Apple has never made a memory controller that supports ECC RAM. Can they? Probably.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Will they? Who knows? That becomes pretty important when you have that much of it. You know? Like there’s
⏹️ ▶️ Marco all these questions that we just have yet to have answers for with the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco ARM transition and some of them the answer is gonna end up being, yeah,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco they just don’t support that anymore. And I hope there’s not many things where that’s the answer, but
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the higher end they push these new chips, the more we’re gonna get those answers.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And the more curious I am to see what the answers are, honestly.
#askatp: M1 longevity
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Colin Devereux writes, it seems like the next few years are going to continue to be incredibly exciting for the Mac. My question, is there
⏹️ ▶️ Casey any concern over the longevity of these chips? Intel-based Macs have a habit of lasting five years or more.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I love being able to buy a Mac and use it for many years without even needing to think about buying a new computer, unlike
⏹️ ▶️ Casey the three of us. Should there be any discussion around how long the M1 chips will last?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I mean, I don’t see why it would be any different. I mean, we have exemplars sort of of this
⏹️ ▶️ Casey with iOS devices. And you know, I have iOS devices in the house that are many years old that
⏹️ ▶️ Casey haven’t been turned on in years that I like just the other day I did this with one of my iPad minis. It hadn’t
⏹️ ▶️ Casey been on in at least a year, maybe even two years. And I turned it on and it worked no sweat. And I take the
⏹️ ▶️ Casey point, but I’m not personally worried about this. Should I be? I
⏹️ ▶️ John mean, my question about this question was, is this about the reliability of the
⏹️ ▶️ John chip as in it’ll break after five years or like how long will these machines still be useful as in like,
⏹️ ▶️ John can I keep using a computer for 10 years? And by the way, buying a new computer every year, unlike you
⏹️ ▶️ John blokes, not me, I’m the one who had a computer for 10 years. So for the
⏹️ ▶️ John chip reliability question, I see no reason why Apple’s system on chips would be
⏹️ ▶️ John any less reliable than the ones they’ve been making for years and years in their phones and iPads. So if you’ve had an iPhone or an iPad,
⏹️ ▶️ John like in general, iPhones and iPads die usually because the batteries go bad or someone drops them and breaks the screen
⏹️ ▶️ John or eventually if you actually let them survive long enough, they just get too slow. So,
⏹️ ▶️ John but no, none of it has had to do with like, oh, the chip fries itself or something. That’s not a problem. So
⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t worry about that. In terms of Mac usefulness, this really depends. Like
⏹️ ▶️ John I’ve been thinking about this with everyone gushing over the M1 Macs, right? We were in
⏹️ ▶️ John a bad period where Intel’s performance was not getting much faster year after year, right? And Apple
⏹️ ▶️ John just leapedfrogged all of their Intel Macs with these M1 base Macs.
⏹️ ▶️ John And this is just the first round. the second round will be faster still and the third round will be faster still. But
⏹️ ▶️ John once that happens, kind of like me getting the 6K display, it very quickly becomes the new normal,
⏹️ ▶️ John right? And you’re like, oh, I’m just used to this now. This is just the way things are. If you get used to
⏹️ ▶️ John M1, like your M1 Mac, and two years go by, the transition is complete, every
⏹️ ▶️ John single Mac, Apple has his arm, and you have the $999 M1 arm,
⏹️ ▶️ John suddenly you have the slowest computer Apple sells. You were so overjoyed because it was faster than the
⏹️ ▶️ John fastest laptop Apple sells when you got it. But now that they’ve made the transition, now yours is the slowest.
⏹️ ▶️ John Does that make your computer less useful to you two years later? Well, no, it’s just as useful
⏹️ ▶️ John as it was before. Like I don’t think it’s gonna get any slower, but faster options
⏹️ ▶️ John will become available. And then like, by that point, maybe the M2 based MacBook Air is out and you
⏹️ ▶️ John have the M1 based MacBook Air and you look at the M2 based one and you’re like, huh, that one’s only $999 too, and
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s whatever amount faster than this one. And your computer didn’t get any slower,
⏹️ ▶️ John but you know there are faster ones available. So if you look at the M1 now, it’s like
⏹️ ▶️ John this is gonna last such a long time because I’m getting high-end Mac performance at a low-end
⏹️ ▶️ John price. But that high-end Mac performance is going to move on and leave
⏹️ ▶️ John you behind. And so you may find that, not that it isn’t useful anymore,
⏹️ ▶️ John but that you can get, you know, if things continue to go at this pace, so much
⏹️ ▶️ John better performance by buying the two or three year newer MacBook Air model to replace it
⏹️ ▶️ John in two or three years. So overall, I would say it’s probably
⏹️ ▶️ John about a wash because the good thing about the Intel computers has been since their progress has been so slow.
⏹️ ▶️ John If you buy an Intel based computer, setting aside the stupid keyboard crap, which really threw a monkey wrench into this, but let’s
⏹️ ▶️ John say like, I was gonna use the Mac Mini, that’s a bad example too.
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco an iMac, if you bought
⏹️ ▶️ John an Intel-based iMac, there’s a safe machine, bought an Intel-based iMac three years ago,
⏹️ ▶️ John before, and right today, how much faster of an iMac can you get? You look at them
⏹️ ▶️ John and you’re like, eh, my iMac’s still pretty good, it’s still, you know, 90% as fast as the fastest iMac that you
⏹️ ▶️ John can get today, yeah, I’m good for a few more years, right? Whereas we made this huge leap to
⏹️ ▶️ John the ARM-based Macs, but if they keep going on a trajectory that has a steeper slope
⏹️ ▶️ John than Intel Macs in terms of performance year over year, it’s gonna make your M1 Mac feel
⏹️ ▶️ John slower relative to the best you can buy, more so than the Intel ones.
⏹️ ▶️ John Because the good thing about Intel Macs not getting much faster is it made your Intel-based Mac not feel
⏹️ ▶️ John that slow year after year. So I feel like those two things are gonna balance
⏹️ ▶️ John each other out. That I do feel like, especially in the laptop
⏹️ ▶️ John realm, Apple has passed a new threshold of performance
⏹️ ▶️ John and battery life that puts it up into, like we’ve seen with the iPad, puts it up into a category
⏹️ ▶️ John where they’re really satisfying most people’s needs. Like there’s a reason iPad battery
⏹️ ▶️ John life hasn’t doubled, because it doesn’t need to double. iPad battery life is pretty good for most
⏹️ ▶️ John people doing most things, right? It has been for years. And most people who have
⏹️ ▶️ John iPads don’t say, I like iPads, but boy, the battery just dies after. It’s just too, you know, I can’t stand
⏹️ ▶️ John the battery life. It’s terrible. say that about iPads, right? In the same way, I feel like
⏹️ ▶️ John that MacBook Air that you bought, its performance will still be acceptable for all the things
⏹️ ▶️ John you do on it if you’re happy with it now, and its battery life may have passed some threshold where it is
⏹️ ▶️ John now close to being acceptable. So in that respect, it will last you a long time. But on the other side of
⏹️ ▶️ John it, you should be able to get a much better MacBook Air in two years and you will be tempted to do so. So
⏹️ ▶️ John that’s why I’m just gonna call it a tie and say, whatever lifetime you’ve been getting out of your Intel base
⏹️ ▶️ John Macs, expect to get a similar useful lifetime out of the ARM base ones. It’s
⏹️ ▶️ John just that the factors influencing your decision to upgrade may be a little bit different.
#askatp: Cable management
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Finally, Nick asks, I just accidentally spent 200 pounds on cable management stuff for my three screen desktop
⏹️ ▶️ Casey setup. The daily paper cut of kicking cables and seeing the mess made me finally snap. Do you all just leave
⏹️ ▶️ Casey your cables where they may fall, or do you get super particular about it like I just did? Or do you land somewhere in between?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I have tried off and on over the years to do anything related to cable management. It never sticks, and
⏹️ ▶️ Casey then I just regret the waste of time I had trying to make everything pretty, so I don’t bother with
⏹️ ▶️ Casey it at all. My desk is an absolute mess in the back. John, I would love to hear what you have to
⏹️ ▶️ John So I have two things going for me and against me when it comes to cable management.
⏹️ ▶️ John And they’re both the same thing. My computer desk is up against the wall. I don’t
⏹️ ▶️ John have a lot of room. My computer, my quote unquote computer room is not that big. It’s also got my PlayStation in it. It’s kind of tight
⏹️ ▶️ John in here. I’ve got big bookshelves, but my computer is up against the wall. That’s a pain
⏹️ ▶️ John for cable management because to manage cables, you kind of get to get to where the cables are, which is in the
⏹️ ▶️ John couple of inches between my desk and the wall. And no, my desk isn’t on wheels and no, it’s not a standing desk.
⏹️ ▶️ John So to do anything back there is really difficult, you know, cause there’s
⏹️ ▶️ John a wall there and you gotta be like on your back looking up or coming from above and behind and you can’t see anything. If my
⏹️ ▶️ John desk was like in the middle of a giant open area, I could just walk around to the other side of the desk and do all my beautiful cable management
⏹️ ▶️ John and tie everything off and put it in the little channel, but I can’t. It’s all like trying to work on the underside of a car without jacks.
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s really torturous. But that exact thing is also my saving
⏹️ ▶️ John grace. Because it’s against the wall, nobody can see what’s going on back there for
⏹️ ▶️ John the most part. So, and the second thing I have going for me is that my desk that’s up against the wall
⏹️ ▶️ John has a big piece of metal that goes from, basically from near
⏹️ ▶️ John the top of the desk about halfway down to the floor. And that piece of metal can hide a
⏹️ ▶️ John lot of sins. So my main cable management strategy is to make things
⏹️ ▶️ John look neat from the perspective of someone who’s in the room or someone who’s sitting in front of the computer
⏹️ ▶️ John and to hide all my sins between the wall and that piece of metal, right? So I don’t
⏹️ ▶️ John wanna see cables snaking around. I don’t wanna, you know, I want them to basically just
⏹️ ▶️ John go from the devices straight to the back of the desk and downward and then I never wanna see them again
⏹️ ▶️ John until they emerge beautifully and plug into the computer they’re supposed to plug into. And I have mostly achieved that,
⏹️ ▶️ John But were you to look behind my computer, you would see where all the bodies are buried. You would
⏹️ ▶️ John see that it’s not really that neat back there. And yeah, all the cables do beautifully go over the edge
⏹️ ▶️ John of the desk and reappear where they need to, but in between, bad things happen. Same thing for, because
⏹️ ▶️ John I use a wired keyboard and mouse, just because I do, the wires that go from my keyboard, you know, go from my
⏹️ ▶️ John keyboard tray, and they somehow go up and they don’t dangle and I don’t kick them or whatever, and they
⏹️ ▶️ John appear in the back of my computer. And how do they get there? Well, if you lay on your back and slide yourself under my desk, you will see
⏹️ ▶️ John a series of cable clips that are snaking their way in a random pattern from my mouse
⏹️ ▶️ John and my keyboard to my computer. So I guess the answer to
⏹️ ▶️ John that question is I’m not carefully arranging my
⏹️ ▶️ John cables, but I’m providing the illusion I’m capably managing my cables
⏹️ ▶️ John by hiding all. It’s like the shoving everything in a closet version of cleaning the house. Like the house looks neat, but
⏹️ ▶️ John don’t open the closet.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, I do a little bit better, but I still wouldn’t say I do a great job
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of this. I do have a standing desk, and that helps a lot for two main reasons.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Number one, when you are arranging your cables, you can raise the desk so that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you can more easily fit under it, and it’s more comfortable to be down there and to do things
⏹️ ▶️ Marco nicely. But the number two benefit, which is probably the bigger one of standing desks in this area,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is that if you routinely raise and lower the desk, you
⏹️ ▶️ Marco have to have a certain amount of good cable management. Otherwise, stuff will be pulled off the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco desk every time you lift it up. So it kind of forces you to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco keep things a little bit tidier. Just because your desk has to be a little bit more
⏹️ ▶️ Marco mobile, and you have to be able to move it knowing that cables are gonna get pulled, and then
⏹️ ▶️ Marco there’ll be some slack out of them when the desk goes down. So you kind of have to accommodate for that in your arrangement.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco That being said, my methods of cable management are pretty simplistic.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’m actually kind of surprised that Nick somehow managed to find a way to spend 200 pounds
⏹️ ▶️ Marco on cable management stuff, which, what is it, like $1,000? Like, I don’t even know how you do that.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Like, I mean, I guess there’s probably like some, you know, cool boutique specialty stuff
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that’s made of walnut and hand carved or something, But my management strategy
⏹️ ▶️ Marco has usually been based on zip ties or Velcro cable ties or both. And
⏹️ ▶️ Marco there’s not much that you have to do that costs a lot of money in this area.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco One of the best things you can do if you wanna set more poundage on fire is
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to get new cables that are exactly the length they need to be and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco no more. Because cable excess length is
⏹️ ▶️ Marco one of the biggest causes of desk cable clutter. And if you can minimize that excess
⏹️ ▶️ Marco length, method number one is just take a zip tie or cable tie and just bound up the excess length somewhere
⏹️ ▶️ Marco along the cable where you can kind of tuck it away and hide it in a useful way. But method number two,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco which just sets more money on fire, is to buy new cables that are shorter, if you can, for whatever devices
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that you can do that for. Also, there’s obviously the strategy of
⏹️ ▶️ Marco if you can consolidate your devices themselves, like all your peripherals, If you can get away
⏹️ ▶️ Marco with one thing to do the job of what you currently have four different things with four different power bricks to do,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco by all means do that. But obviously that’s not always possible. The other thing I would say
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is one of the standing desk advantages of
⏹️ ▶️ Marco keeping things tidy is that when you’re designing a cable setup for a standing
⏹️ ▶️ Marco desk, one of the easiest places to put something, whether it’s a cable
⏹️ ▶️ Marco or a small peripheral like an external hard drive or something, is the underside of the desk.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Which I feel like is an area, like literally just attaching things to the underside of your
⏹️ ▶️ Marco desk, is an area of cable management real estate that most people
⏹️ ▶️ Marco underuse. So I would strongly suggest consider
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that when you’re arranging things. So for instance, on the underside of my desk I have two
⏹️ ▶️ Marco external hard drives plugged into a USB hub. All of those things
⏹️ ▶️ Marco are adhered to the underside of my desk with command strips, the Velcro
⏹️ ▶️ Marco ones. So they hold a ton of weight, but because they’re Velcro and in two pieces,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you can like take the thing off and then you can do the command, you
⏹️ ▶️ Marco know, slow pull to detach the top strip thing. So you don’t have to like reach behind a hard drive and try
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to pull a little tiny tab. Like you can take the device off, then you have full reach on the tabs. So it makes command
⏹️ ▶️ Marco strips way better to do the two-piece Velcro ones. And they hold a bunch of weight. So like, you know, I stick two of those
⏹️ ▶️ Marco on the bottom of a hard drive or something, stick it on the bottom of my desk, it’s fine. I have a speaker amp stuck to the bottom
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of my desk that way. It’s not a large speaker amp, mind you, it’s one of those like $50 SMSL things.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco But the speakers on my desk are powered by an amp that is command
⏹️ ▶️ Marco stripped to the bottom of my desk. Like, and it works. And it’s, they’re very secure.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and you know that because they’re you know they’re made to hold like five pounds each I put two of them on something that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco weighs one pound and you know I have a lot of a lot of leeway there but anyway so
⏹️ ▶️ Marco use the underside of your desk as well undersides of desks usually also provide some amount
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of you know framing some kind of bars that go across it or somewhere and those are
⏹️ ▶️ Marco also good things to attach cables to or to run cables along
⏹️ ▶️ Marco again zip ties and cable ties are your friend here. But ultimately,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the end game of my desk setups, my cable management setups,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is I think a very common story. I’ll get it set up really nicely and it’ll be really
⏹️ ▶️ Marco nice for like two months and then I’ll add something or a cable will break or I’ll have to rearrange
⏹️ ▶️ Marco something and then I, okay, well now I’ll just plug this in real fast and I’ll get back to my job.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And then a few months later I’ll add something else. I’ll just plug this in real fast and get back to my job.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And eventually, there’s so much crap built up and I can’t move my iMac anymore because
⏹️ ▶️ Marco some cable is being pulled too taut and I can’t tilt the screen to the right, you know, tilt level anymore.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And at some point I’m like, all right, I’m just gonna start all this over again. Clip all the zip ties, take
⏹️ ▶️ Marco all the cables out, unplug everything, do it all over again. And that’s just
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the cycle of this kind of thing. And I don’t, I think the reality of your desk
⏹️ ▶️ Marco setup is that it changes over time. That’s the nature of technology. It’s the nature
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of computers. It’s the nature of being a nerd. So you can have the best setup in the world, but
⏹️ ▶️ Marco in a year, you’re gonna wanna redo it. And instead of trying to fight that or
⏹️ ▶️ Marco feel bad about it, just accept like, yeah, this is what’s gonna happen. You’re gonna make it really nice. And in a year,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s not gonna be nice anymore. It’s gonna be full of knots and dust and bees and God
⏹️ ▶️ Marco knows what else, and then you’re gonna have to just redo the whole thing again, and that’s just how it goes. And
⏹️ ▶️ Marco go into it with that in mind, and you’ll feel a lot better when it happens.
⏹️ ▶️ John I think, I don’t know if I spent 200 pounds, I don’t know what a pound is, is that the same as a quid? I kid, I kid.
⏹️ ▶️ John But I did spend a lot of money on cables when I got my Mac Pro set up. And it’s just for the reason Marco
⏹️ ▶️ John said, not because I needed cables, although I did need a few of them, but mostly because now I had new distances to
⏹️ ▶️ John things, because my Mac Pro wasn’t gonna be underneath the table, and I had the new monitor and
⏹️ ▶️ John different things were connected to hubs and they weren’t before. And so I got cables that they’re not exactly
⏹️ ▶️ John the right length, but they’re in the ballpark. So I don’t have any excess that I have to side. And also none of them
⏹️ ▶️ John are pulled so taut that they are visible. Cause again, that’s my main concern about hiding things. I need mine to sort of
⏹️ ▶️ John loop down out of sight and then come back up out of sight and go into the computer.
⏹️ ▶️ John And so they can’t be too sharp but they also can’t be too long. And that’s why I got all these new cables.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Thanks to our sponsors this week, Flat File, HelloFresh, and Purple. And thank you to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco our members who support us directly. You can join at atp.fm slash join. We will
⏹️ ▶️ Marco talk to you all next week.
⏹️ ▶️ John Now the show is over, they didn’t even mean to begin
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Cause it was accidental, oh it was accidental
⏹️ ▶️ John any research, Marco and Casey wouldn’t let him Cause it was accidental,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey accidental And you can find
⏹️ ▶️ John the show notes at atp.fm And if you’re
⏹️ ▶️ Marco can follow them at C-A-S-E-Y-L-I-S-S
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So that’s Casey Liss, M-A-R-C-O-A-R-M,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco N-T Marco Armin, S-I-R-A-C-U-S-A
⏹️ ▶️ John Syracuse It’s accidental, they
⏹️ ▶️ John didn’t mean to Accidental, tech podcast so long.
The backpack story
⏹️ ▶️ Marco A few weeks ago I said very very quickly as part as like a lead into some other segment that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I had thoroughly ruined my Peak Design Everyday Backpack and I was
⏹️ ▶️ Marco about to tell you how it went and then we just we got sidetracked and started talking about other stuff and just never
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John came back to it.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah right. And people have been asking literally every week since then,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco so what happened to the backpack? So here’s the quick
⏹️ ▶️ Marco story on that. I was going to one of my trips you know to go run
⏹️ ▶️ Marco some errands off the island so I had my backpack full of stuff and I had like my dog
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and I had like a bottle of water for the dog and I had a bottle of water for me and I wanted to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco carry a coffee as well because part of these errands involves a long drive
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and I put my coffee as I always do in my Zojirushi travel mug.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Zojirushi makes awesome travel mugs for coffee They come in all different sizes and they have these
⏹️ ▶️ Marco flip-top lids that you can close and you can lock. Normally, I
⏹️ ▶️ Marco would have used the external cup holder on
⏹️ ▶️ Marco my backpack. But in this case, the two external cup holders,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco or external bottle holders rather, on the backpack, the ones on each side, were already occupied. I decided to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco put the coffee in the top compartment of the backpack. And it was kind
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of padded with like a jacket on one side so it couldn’t tip over and it turned out
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I this one time had forgotten to lock the lid
⏹️ ▶️ Marco No, and this one time as part of the process of getting myself
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and my dog and my stall the stuff I was carrying between The house
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and the walk and the boat and the car somehow the lid,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I had forgotten to lock the lid and somehow in the shuffling around something had pushed the button
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and it had popped open and so my full thing
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of coffee in my Zojirushi travel mug had the opportunity
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to spill not even all of it but maybe a quarter of itself into the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco backpack. It It turns out that when you spill a quarter cup of coffee inside
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a backpack, it goes everywhere. You’d
⏹️ ▶️ Marco be shocked how much of the bag in how many different surfaces
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and different materials and everything, how much of it gets surprisingly
⏹️ ▶️ Marco wet from a quarter cup of coffee. The problem that I have
⏹️ ▶️ Marco with this kind of thing, you know I love coffee. I love lots of food and drink type things.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco But after I have cooked and eaten a meal, I don’t want to be
⏹️ ▶️ Marco going to bed at 10 o’clock that night and still be smelling the food that I cooked four
⏹️ ▶️ Marco hours ago. I want the smell of food to be there while
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’m cooking and eating, and then ideally to instantly disappear. And similarly,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco as much as I love coffee, I don’t want my entire backpack to smell
⏹️ ▶️ Marco like coffee all the time. So I have this backpack that’s full of coffee,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco somehow, with a quarter cup, but trust me, it went everywhere.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And I got it, and like, every time I open it up, you know, I tried, you know, some wet paper towels and wet cloths
⏹️ ▶️ Marco here and there to try to like blot it and wipe some of the surfaces down, but like, it’s really in the fabric. Every time
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I would open it up, it just smelled like now old, stale coffee.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco everything in it smelled like coffee, and I had to like take everything out wash every like, you know, wipe or
⏹️ ▶️ Marco wash everything that was in it. But still, the whole bag just reached for coffee and no
⏹️ ▶️ Marco amount of cleaning I was doing to it was helping. I even like brought it into the sink and I just started running
⏹️ ▶️ Marco water over parts. I’m like, it’s already I already don’t want to use this bag anymore. So if I happen to ruin the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco structure of it in some way, oh, well, I’ve already ruined it. And so then I started washing it like crazy.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I started like, you know, soaking parts, you know, really like hosing it down. I left
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it outside on the deck through three different rain and wind storms
⏹️ ▶️ Marco hoping that it would like air out and really get and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco nothing I did could make this backpack stop smelling like stale rotten coffee.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco They’ve actually since revised the bag they’ve made a version two of it about a
⏹️ ▶️ Marco year ago and Tiff has one of the version two ones and there are certain things about the version two
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that are significantly better, but there are also certain things about it that I actually like a lot less than
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the version one. And so I’m like, I just wanna replace this backpack,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco but I don’t want the current ones, I kinda want the old one. And fortunately on Amazon, they seem
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to be unloading old stock of the old bags for discounted prices on Amazon. So
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’m like, you know what, this is available right now, it’s not that much money, let me just buy a spare.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Sure enough, the spare comes, I get it, It’s fine, it’s perfect, I’m happy with it. I now
⏹️ ▶️ Marco am keeping the old stale coffee one as the spare. And that’s it,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco there is no ending to the story. This is not a very interesting story. I was totally unable to remove
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the coffee smell from his backpack. So I must caution you all out there,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco don’t carry liquids inside your Peak Design Everyday Backpacks, unless you are really, really
⏹️ ▶️ Marco sure that you have locked the lid on said liquids. But to be extra sure,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco just keep it in the outside pocket. And that’s, you know, the bottle holder pockets, they’re there for a reason.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco That’s probably a better place to put liquids.
⏹️ ▶️ John I thought the moral of the story was the coffee ruins everything.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey You took the words right out of my mouth, John Syracuse. Well done, sir. Well
⏹️ ▶️ John Stale coffee reminds me, when I used to visit my mom’s office, that’s what it smelled like. Like, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ John coffee and like the little, what do you call them? The hot plates things.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, I mean that’s really bad coffee. Like, at least this was good coffee, but even good coffee, once it has soaked into
⏹️ ▶️ Marco your backpack fabric, becomes bad coffee pretty quickly.
⏹️ ▶️ John Well, I’m saying like, this is the 80s, and there was no Keurig machines or anything like that. It was all there was, was the little whatever coffee
⏹️ ▶️ John things for the office, but it smelled
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco like old, burned coffee. Are
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you using Keurig machines as a good thing here? You’re
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John saying? No, I’m
⏹️ ▶️ John saying, well, certainly they make better coffee than these things do, because this was like the glass, like you get in a hotel
⏹️ ▶️ John room, a glass pot that you put on a hot thing with a little drip, and the coffee would just sit in there,
⏹️ ▶️ John and sometimes it would sit in there and get burned or whatever and just the office permanently smelled like
⏹️ ▶️ John the worst of like three day old burned coffee in one of those things. It was just a permanent smell.
⏹️ ▶️ John I can imagine your backpack smelling worse than that.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, like, cause again, the coffee was great when it was fresh and when it was not in the fabric of a backpack
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that I’ve been using constantly for four years, whatever. But yeah, when they combine,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco when you have an unwelcome food or drink smell In a place
⏹️ ▶️ Marco or at times when you don’t want to be spelling that it becomes significantly less pleasant
⏹️ ▶️ John So the only thing that could be possibly well two things could be worse than that one I know I know this from recent
⏹️ ▶️ John experience at my current job one of the people who sat like a diagonal to me
⏹️ ▶️ John one of my desks that I had what did he had
⏹️ ▶️ John a Bottle of bourbon I think like a glass bottle of bourbon.
⏹️ ▶️ John It was used for sort of of after work activities and it was stored under his desk
⏹️ ▶️ John and somehow got kicked into a metal thing and cracked and leaked bourbon all over the
⏹️ ▶️ John floor. And I can tell you that is a strong smell that is difficult to get rid of. But the good thing alcohol goes along for
⏹️ ▶️ John it is volatile and a lot of it does dissipate, right? But the real worst
⏹️ ▶️ John one is, I think this was my younger brother, spilled milk in the back of our station wagon
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey once. Oh, that’s
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco just get a new car. It soaks into the carpet and you’re like,
⏹️ ▶️ John try to blot it up, but whatever. But then you come back in the next day after it’s been in the hot sun,
⏹️ ▶️ John rotten milk soaked into car like, you know, not just the carpeting that you can take out, but like soaked
⏹️ ▶️ John into like the stuff that is actually stuck to the, you know, metal panel. Boy, that
⏹️ ▶️ John smell. I’ll remember that forever. And it never
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey really goes away.
⏹️ ▶️ John The goat, the ghost of rotten milk haunted that station wagon forever. Yeah, that’s
⏹️ ▶️ John you’re never getting rid of that smell. You can’t just buy a new Volvo station wagon. Well, I guess you can, but
⏹️ ▶️ John Made of walnut. I got nothing that’s somewhat
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, I said it, but it’s not bad.
Walnut ruins everything
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Walnut has ruined all cool products.
⏹️ ▶️ John The nut or the wood?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, the nut ruins everything it’s in. The nuts… I’d rather have a backpack full of coffee than like a
⏹️ ▶️ Marco brownie that has one walnut somewhere in it.
⏹️ ▶️ John I have a walnut acclamation story, actually. Oh yeah? What does that even
⏹️ ▶️ John mean? I’m with you mostly on walnuts. The worst nut, right? It looks like brains,
⏹️ ▶️ John it tastes bad, I don’t want
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey them in my brownies.
⏹️ ▶️ John like the whole nine yards on, you know, anti-walnut, right? But one of my
⏹️ ▶️ John favorite ice cream flavors, Ben and Jerry’s New York Super Fudge Chunk, has come with walnuts
⏹️ ▶️ John in it forever for the history of the flavor. And I love the flavor and I would get it and
⏹️ ▶️ John I would eat around the walnuts carefully, like I’d extract them and put them aside and say, I’m not eating
⏹️ ▶️ John that, I’m gonna eat everything else. And how long has that flavor been around? Decades, I’ve been eating New York Super Fudge
⏹️ ▶️ John Chunk, but I think I had some like three days ago. Like I ate a lot of ice cream, first of all. And second
⏹️ ▶️ John of all, I ate a lot of New York superfoods. And over the decades, I slowly
⏹️ ▶️ John stopped extracting the walnuts and started just eating them.
⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t like them. Walnuts are so bad. I don’t want them in my brownies. I would like
⏹️ ▶️ John it better if they weren’t in this, but now I can eat them without,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, having a feeling of revulsion. I don’t like them, but I don’t
⏹️ ▶️ John hate them as much as I used to, at least in this one context. So I feel like I’ve turned a corner on walnut.
⏹️ ▶️ John And now it is not worth the effort to extract them. I merely just, the
⏹️ ▶️ John way I get rid of them now is I eat them.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Glowing endorsement.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, right? I mean, what can you do with walnuts? The other thing is, when I grew up, we had one of the
⏹️ ▶️ John traditional courses in Italian-American meals, the nut course, before dessert. And they would bring
⏹️ ▶️ John out a big thing of nuts in the shelves. And half the fun of that is just getting to play with the nutcrackers and crack open the things or whatever.
⏹️ ▶️ John And walnuts are the biggest and the most fun to crack, but then you got a bunch of walnuts and who the hell wants those? So I always give them to like my uncle or
⏹️ ▶️ John grandfather and they would eat
⏹️ ▶️ Casey them. I think we talked about this a year or two back. So my mom’s parents,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey my grandparents are Italian American and I grew up with similar, although perhaps less devout
⏹️ ▶️ Casey traditions as you, John. And one of the things that was always on display and
⏹️ ▶️ Casey out for consumption when I visited them was pistachios. And the
⏹️ ▶️ Casey thought technology of using a previously cracked pistachio shell
⏹️ ▶️ Casey as a screwdriver or lever to open a nigh-uncrackable pistachio shell
⏹️ ▶️ Casey was something I just discovered a handful of years ago.
⏹️ ▶️ John It doesn’t have to be previously cracked. You just need a little, you just need a Pac-Man mouth and you can use that.
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey Yeah. Because otherwise you got
⏹️ ▶️ John a chicken-egg situation. How do you get the first one open?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Right, right, right. But anyway, that was thought technology that just blew my mind, and it has
⏹️ ▶️ Casey changed my life for the better ever since.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I regret to admit that I’ve actually switched to like
⏹️ ▶️ Marco shelled pistachios. What is it, is it unshell, is it shell-less?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco What is the term? The ones that don’t have shells on them. Yes, the ones that do not come with shells. I’ve switched to those for pistachios.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey see, but that takes away to some of the tea ceremony.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I know, I was on your side for many years, but I have since switched.
⏹️ ▶️ John crave pistachios so much which you can’t be slowed down by the shells.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, I just kind of just shovel them in. Pour them into my face now.
⏹️ ▶️ John That’s really putting a damper on your nut-based calorie intake
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s best not to look at how many calories are in
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John nuts. No, don’t. That’s what I’m saying.
⏹️ ▶️ John the price. God, pistachios are so expensive.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, well, actually, I’ve found a nice solution to that. There’s, what’s the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco brand that comes in the green bag? Like the Good or whatever. It’s like some generic
⏹️ ▶️ John whatever national advertising brand.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, yeah, but they have now these like, those like foil tube
⏹️ ▶️ Marco packs that you buy a box that has like eight of them in there. And so, it’s pre-portioned.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Oh yeah, the Wonderful brand, thank you, Steve Malone in the chat. Yeah, the Wonderful brand.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And yeah, so you can like just have these little like 120 calorie packs, these little like foil tubes.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s like three pistachios. It’s not that many, but you can, but like it’s nice that you can just grab
⏹️ ▶️ Marco one of those and then you know how many calories you’re eating in three seconds,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of just like, and you can basically pour it into your face in like two or three pours,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and then you’re done, and you can move on.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, my dad, he loves pistachios. He’s also allergic to them, and it’s just like,
⏹️ ▶️ John I mean, it could be right out of The Simpsons. But you’re allergic to these, but I love them. So he’d just sit there and
⏹️ ▶️ John eat them, and just get all puffy and just, it’s
⏹️ ▶️ John you can’t stop. It’s worth it, I guess. It’s not, it hasn’t killed them yet,
⏹️ ▶️ John but it’s not, you know. Pistachio ice cream is a pretty good way because there’s
⏹️ ▶️ John not a lot of pistachios in pistachio ice cream, but there’s enough that you feel like you’re getting something. Of course, the rest of it is ice cream, which isn’t
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, from a calorie point of view, yeah, although pistachio ice cream is very good. But so hard, it seems
⏹️ ▶️ Marco like it’s very difficult to do well. Yeah,
⏹️ ▶️ John Ben and Jerry’s has the best pistachio ice cream. No contest. Haagen-Dazs makes the pistachios
⏹️ ▶️ John too small. and any ice cream that is green, forget it.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco ones that are like neon green to try to indicate pistachioness. Yeah, no, that’s not, that’s still
⏹️ ▶️ John fake, whatever, yeah. Ben & Jerry’s Pistachio, what is it called? Pistachio, pistachio, I forget
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco the flavor name.
⏹️ ▶️ John They are the only good store-bought pistachio ice cream I’ve ever found.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco In conclusion, walnuts are dicks.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And coffee ruins everything.
⏹️ ▶️ John walnuts in your backpack and it’s not gonna ruin it. Yep, that’s right.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, it depends, I mean, they’re really bad. Just pick those walnuts right out of there. Anyway, bye everybody.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Thank you for listening.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Happy Thanksgiving.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, Happy Thanksgiving. That’s right.
⏹️ ▶️ John put walnuts in your stuffing. Use pine nuts instead, they’re better.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, yeah, actually that’s true for sure. And also, since many people are not
⏹️ ▶️ Marco traveling for Thanksgiving, ourselves included.
⏹️ ▶️ John All people are not traveling, right? Everybody who’s listening.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, please don’t travel. But yeah, for all of us who are not traveling, the great thing about this is that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you can edit what you have to be only the stuff you like. So
⏹️ ▶️ Marco normally, if you go to Thanksgiving at your parents’ place or whatever, and there’s always,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco first of all, there’s always the turkey, and turkey is usually terrible. Agreed. Disagree.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Oh no, Marco is 100% right.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco There are ways to make it decent, but most people don’t or can’t do those.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So the result is turkey is usually pretty bad. But you don’t have to have
⏹️ ▶️ Marco turkey, or you don’t have to have a whole turkey. We decided for our little, you know, Thanksgiving here
⏹️ ▶️ Marco for our little family here at the beach, we decided we’re not gonna have a whole turkey because there’s only three of us,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco but we bought a turkey breast because you can buy just the breast and you can roast just that and brine it and everything. You can do all sorts of fun stuff
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and it’s way smaller. You got the worst part of the turkey, congratulations. It’s way smaller
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and way easier to deal with. Or you can, if you like the dark meat, you can buy a couple of eggs or whatever. Like you can buy just
⏹️ ▶️ Marco parts of the turkey or you can cook any other type of meat or no meat. You can have
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Thanksgiving that’s all side dishes. You can have Thanksgiving that’s a steak or a roast or anything else. Like,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it doesn’t have to be.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Oh, I’m on board. Marco, I’m coming to that Thanksgiving next year.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, like take this opportunity that you are forced by major world events
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to have a different kind of Thanksgiving that is both smaller and much more within your control.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Take the opportunity to make your Thanksgiving that like pistachio ice cream
⏹️ ▶️ Marco for dinner. Yes, if that’s what you want, you can have Thanksgiving that is only the things that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you want and no other things. You can control the ratios. If you wanna have a Thanksgiving dinner that’s three
⏹️ ▶️ Marco quarters stuffing, you can do that. Like that’s, it’s up to you. You have full control
⏹️ ▶️ Marco over what you make. So, you know, take this opportunity that you’re forced to do something different
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and actually do something that you might enjoy a little bit better. Or at least the food part can be better
⏹️ ▶️ Marco while you talk to your family over FaceTime and you look at their dry turkey and you’re like, ha ha, I don’t have to eat that.
⏹️ ▶️ John Alternately, you could take this Thanksgiving away from family as an opportunity to practice making
⏹️ ▶️ John turkey so you don’t ruin it because turkey is good. Practice in a judgment-free environment.
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s not that hard to make turkey, people. Just, just, forget it. Anyway, I
⏹️ ▶️ John turkey. I’m gonna have turkey this Thanksgiving. It’s possible to make it without ruining it.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, I mean, it’s possible. It’s just very unlikely.
⏹️ ▶️ John know. I think people just cook it at too high a temperature. lots of meat things. Like if your problem
⏹️ ▶️ John is that you keep screwing it up, it’s probably because you’re trying to cook it at a too high a temperature, especially for something big.
⏹️ ▶️ John You just cook it low and slow. Then your only real problem is like the outside can be crappy, but then you just do high heat
⏹️ ▶️ John to the beginning or end and you solve that problem and it’s not that hard. You know, instant
⏹️ ▶️ John read thermometer is your friend.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, but yeah, yes, but a thermometer tells you when the inside is done,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco when the outside is totally dried out and burnt. It doesn’t
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John prevent the- Well, but won’t
⏹️ ▶️ John the outside, won’t be totally dried out and burnt have you cooking at a lower temperature?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, it’s very hard to cook a very large piece of meat
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that you are leaving whole in its whole form. Practice, practice. It’s very hard to do that in a reasonable
⏹️ ▶️ Marco amount of time in a regular household oven. Like, if you’re gonna
⏹️ ▶️ Marco smoke it and smoke the turkey over like 12 hours, there are ways to do
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it. There are lots of low and slow cooking methods, but most people either aren’t set up
⏹️ ▶️ Marco for them or don’t have the skill for them, and the result is usually
⏹️ ▶️ Marco not great. Enjoy your Thanksgiving, whatever it is, and if you
⏹️ ▶️ Marco wanna make something better than turkey, feel free.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, ham’s more of a Christmas thing, though, I think. Or Easter. I’ve had good
⏹️ ▶️ Marco spiral hams more often than I’ve had good turkey. Oh, preach.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And I should clarify, I don’t like ham that much. Like, I actually don’t like ham in general. Like,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’ll eat it, but I’d rather eat something else. You should try the Boar’s Head ham. They sell
⏹️ ▶️ Marco like the big ones?
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, non-spiral cubs. Just one big hunk of ham, but it’s already cooked, you just heat it up.
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s so much better than that spiral slice stuff that you’re getting, I guarantee.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Can you still put the big pineapple rings on the side?
⏹️ ▶️ John I mean, it’s, you know, like the spiral slice, it’s already cooked, so you’re just heating it through, and you can do whatever you want
⏹️ ▶️ John with it, but I would, if you just get the Boar’s Head ham, you can get like a small one that’s like small enough for like one meal for a family.
⏹️ ▶️ John I mean, it’s very expensive, but try it and then buy a spiral slice one too and then put them side by
⏹️ ▶️ John side and A, B test against them. It’s like, it’s no contest.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah. And I would say too, like on the pricing side, like if you’re buying so
⏹️ ▶️ Marco much ham that the price of it is a problem, I would venture to say you’re probably eating
⏹️ ▶️ John Well, if you have a big family dinner and you’re gonna buy ham that’s gonna feed the whole family, you do have to buy a bigger
⏹️ ▶️ John ham. But yeah, we made the mistake of, We’ve been doing Boar’s Head hams for, usually for Easter for a long
⏹️ ▶️ John time. We’re like, oh, we couldn’t find it. We bought a different brand and it was so disappointing. I was like, oh my God, we can never,
⏹️ ▶️ John we can never buy this non-Boar’s
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey Head ham ever
⏹️ ▶️ Casey again. Boar’s Head stuff is phenomenally expensive, but is phenomenally tasty. Like I could
⏹️ ▶️ Casey sit, I know you two are gonna judge me for this, but I swear to you, I could sit and eat a pound of Boar’s Head White
⏹️ ▶️ Casey American like it was
⏹️ ▶️ John We know you and your White American cheese. We know all about
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it. No, we’ve actually, we’ve had the Boar’s Head Yellow American is our primary cheese
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of our household. Because the little grocery store here didn’t have good Kraft single kind
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of cheese, like the pre-wrapped singles for Adam all summer, like to make grilled cheeses for our kid. And so
⏹️ ▶️ Marco we’ve switched the entire family over to just using Boar’s Head Yellow Deli American for pretty
⏹️ ▶️ Marco much everything. And it’s fantastic.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey The Aaron’s entire family is very much on the anti-American cheese bandwagon, and they’re
⏹️ ▶️ Casey all wrong. They’re
⏹️ ▶️ John all wrong. I think I’ll say about the Boar’s Head cheese is for grilled cheese,
⏹️ ▶️ John full fat Kraft is still real cheese, not the singles, not the cheese
⏹️ ▶️ John food. Kraft American actual cheese is still better than grilled cheese sandwiches.
⏹️ ▶️ John That’s probably true. I’d buy that.
⏹️ ▶️ John might not. I know I had Boar’s, I grew up with Boar’s Head cheese. I know exactly what you’re talking
⏹️ ▶️ John about. I ate tons of it. I still like it. But for a grilled cheese sandwich, straight up American, do the
⏹️ ▶️ John full fat whole milk real American Kraft cheese versus
⏹️ ▶️ John the Borzett and just make two sandwiches and see which one you like better. I think the Kraft one is better
⏹️ ▶️ John because that is its element, the artificial Kraft American cheese and the grilled cheese sandwich.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco That’s true. That’s fair. I will also argue once again that American cheese is the best cheese
⏹️ ▶️ Marco for hamburgers. By the way, listeners, thank you for listening and we will talk to you next week.