424: Ethernet Squid01 Apr 2021
WWDC’s announcement, WatchConnectivity, read-only Twitter apps, Ubiquiti’s trouble, network-switch fashion, and the latest hot news about cryptocurrency.
- [More] Tesla wheels of shame
- AirPods Max warranty repairs (via Harrison Krebs)
- WWDC 2021 Announced
- New Siri Default Voices
- Ubiquiti Breach
- John’s Networking Situation
- Should one use a non-administrator user account? (via Michael)
- How do I mash together 400 video clips into one file? (via Duncan Wilcock)
- Casey’s primer on
- In short:
- Create a file that refers to all 400 file names. Call it, say,
- Each line of that file reads
file 2.mp4, etc. One file per line.
- Maybe something like this?
ffmpeg -f concat -i files.txt -vf scale=4096:2160 three-hour-movie.mp4
- Create a file that refers to all 400 file names. Call it, say,
- How does Overcast scrape iTunes? (via Brandon Wees)
- Bell follow-up
- Squarespace: Make your next move. Use code ATP for 10% off your first order.
- Hello Fresh: America’s #1 meal kit. Use code atp12 for 12 free meals.
- Linode: Instantly deploy and manage an SSD server in the Linode Cloud. New accounts get a $100 credit.
Become a member for ad-free episodes and our early-release, unedited “bootleg” feed!
- WatchConnectivity sucks
- Read-only Tweetbot
- WatchConnectivity (still) sucks
- More Tesla Wheels of Shame 🖼️
- AirPods Max repair surprise
- Sponsor: Linode
- WWDC announced 🖼️
- Sponsor: HelloFresh (code atp12)
- Siri voice choice
- Ubiquiti’s in trouble
- Ubiquiti’s (still) in trouble
- John’s network switches
- Sponsor: Squarespace (code ATP)
- #askatp: Non-admin accounts
- #askatp: 400 videos into one
- #askatp: Apple Podcasts API
- Ending theme
- Follow-up: 🛎
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So Casey, I feel like I should buy you a drink or something because I saw on Twitter earlier
⏹️ ▶️ Marco today that you are using watch connectivity.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John Your new secret app that you haven’t told us about yet.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, W. C. stands for water closet. Yeah, that’s right.
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco Yeah, it does.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It should. It’s that good. So watch activity is the framework with which
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you need to use to communicate between a iPhone app and an apple watch app
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and I saw you and James Thompson go going back and forth on Twitter earlier today.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco This is a good thing to throw in. I’ve actually found a wonderful life hack. The
⏹️ ▶️ Marco latest version of Tweetbot requires a subscription to fully
⏹️ ▶️ Marco unlock all of its features. They finally moved from paid up front. I
⏹️ ▶️ Casey already know where this is going.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco They finally moved from paid up front to like paid once to subscription, which makes total sense. Like it’s it’s
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a I love Tweetbot. It’s a great Twitter app and it makes total sense that they now do have ongoing costs
⏹️ ▶️ Marco even more than they did with just you know development, which is its own big thing before. before. So it makes total sense to have
⏹️ ▶️ Marco subscription pricing. I mean, for almost any app these days that doesn’t have any other kind of constant income. But
⏹️ ▶️ Marco anyway, so when I installed the new version and it became read only mode
⏹️ ▶️ Marco until you subscribe and not that I think you shouldn’t subscribe, I think you should. However,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco this became an accidental feature for me that now I have by, by
⏹️ ▶️ Marco inaction, a read only Twitter client on my phone. And I still use it in read
⏹️ ▶️ Marco right mode paid all the way on my desktop, but on my phone
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I have a read only twitter client and it’s kind of amazing. Yeah, I’ll think
⏹️ ▶️ Marco like, oh, I should I should reply to that and oh well, then I subscribe. I like wait a minute. I’ve been loving
⏹️ ▶️ Marco read only twitter and so I just haven’t subscribed only because I actually
⏹️ ▶️ Marco love being forced not to engage. I’m like, oh, this is actually better for me that I post less
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and react less to things.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey It’s so funny you say that because I love the TweetBot guys, I love TweetBot, it is one
⏹️ ▶️ Casey of my favorite and most used apps and when they went subscription
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and when they, I don’t know if they like turned off subscribing on the beta or something like that, but basically
⏹️ ▶️ Casey when I needed to have the real live app.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Oh, that’s how I discovered it. That’s right, because they had the beta and it was like with test
⏹️ ▶️ Marco flight betas, you can make like test purchases, but they don’t, they’re not actually
⏹️ ▶️ Marco real and they expire in a really short time and everything. But I’ve had such bad luck in the past with
⏹️ ▶️ Marco test flight sandbox purchases resulting in some kind of bug where like, I get random
⏹️ ▶️ Marco pop-up dialogues all the time on my phone saying, hey, resubscribe sandbox environment and having to reenter your store
⏹️ ▶️ Marco password and everything, store gets a buggy mess. And so I’m like, all right, I’m not gonna subscribe to this during the test flight because
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I don’t want to mess up my sandbox purchase environment with test purchases. And so
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I just never subscribed. And that’s how I discovered, like, oh, this is actually really nice.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, so what had happened for me was I had subscribed for
⏹️ ▶️ Casey free during the test flight, and then the test flight ended, and I don’t remember if
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I went to the release version or if the test flight, like maybe their own servers, like wouldn’t bless a subscription
⏹️ ▶️ Casey or something. One way or another, I wasn’t subscribed then. And at this point, I had not paid them
⏹️ ▶️ Casey any money. And so that’s fair that I hadn’t been subscribed. But I noticed, wait a second,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I kind of miss being able to fave things because I like to use, you know, hard to fave whatever is like a
⏹️ ▶️ Casey very simple, like, yep, thanks, or I see you, or ha ha, I get it, you know, rather than
⏹️ ▶️ Casey having to reply to a tweet. And I really miss that. And that was it.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey So, but I did end up subscribing just like a week or two ago and I don’t know how long
⏹️ ▶️ Casey the new tweet pod has been out. I feel like it’s been at least a month, probably closer to two
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco months. Yeah, something like
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that. And I only subscribed like a week ago, and I echo everything you said, Marco. Like, I’m not trying to say you shouldn’t
⏹️ ▶️ Casey subscribe. It’s a wonderful, wonderful app. And what got me to subscribe was that I kept
⏹️ ▶️ Casey the official Twitter app on my phone, which is hot garbage. It is not
⏹️ ▶️ Casey meant for me. Like, I shouldn’t say it’s hot garbage. It is not meant for me is a better way of phrasing it.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Oh, no, it’s also garbage. Don’t worry. You don’t need to candy coat this
⏹️ ▶️ Casey one. Yeah, por que no los dos, right? But it, it, I would use
⏹️ ▶️ Casey the official Twitter app when I really, really, really wanted to reply to something, but it was more
⏹️ ▶️ Casey the like hearts and, and things like that, that I miss, or like DMS, for example,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that I really wanted tweet bot for then, then it was replying. And now that you say that,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I almost wonder if the tweet bot folks could engage some sort of like
⏹️ ▶️ Casey almost read only mode where maybe you could like throw somebody a fave, but that was it, you couldn’t do anything else.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco kind of like that it prevents me from, because I’ve also had the same habit, like I’ll throw a fav
⏹️ ▶️ Marco on things as kind of like a acknowledgement or thank you, but most people
⏹️ ▶️ Marco who I interact with or who follow me, I think there’s a higher than average chance they’re using a third party Twitter
⏹️ ▶️ Marco client, and if you use a third party Twitter client, depending on how you have it set up, but generally speaking, you don’t
⏹️ ▶️ Marco usually get notified on favs, because third party APIs until very recently
⏹️ ▶️ Marco didn’t have a good way to like stream those in and be notified all the time. And so I have a
⏹️ ▶️ Marco feeling like my faves don’t really mean what I think they mean and almost no one sees
⏹️ ▶️ Marco them in practice. And so it’s almost like well if you’re going to actually want
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to give somebody feedback, you should give them real feedback in like with a reply or something. And so I think
⏹️ ▶️ Marco in practice faves are fairly useless and so you might as well not have the ability
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to leave them because then you feel like you’re leaving feedback when in In many cases, the people will never see it.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And that’s completely fair. But it’s so funny hearing you describe this because I went through the exact same adventure
⏹️ ▶️ Casey myself. And it was my utter disgust with the official Twitter app that got me to
⏹️ ▶️ Casey pay for it. That sounds bad. I really, really love TweetBot. This is not an ad. I don’t think they’ve
⏹️ ▶️ Casey ever, ever, ever paid us to do anything on this show. I really, really do love it. I’m not
⏹️ ▶️ Casey trying to imply anything else. But I do agree that this was a feature, not a bug in a
⏹️ ▶️ Casey lot of ways. So yeah, I totally hear you.
WatchConnectivity (still) sucks
⏹️ ▶️ Casey To come back to the actual point you were trying to make, yes, I am working on something very slowly.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And I feel like I have like an analog and a half worth of content about how slowly I’ve been
⏹️ ▶️ Casey working on this app. And I’m actually, we don’t need to pull in this thread right now, but I’m really, really frustrated
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and kind of disgusted with myself at how long it’s been taking me because it’s really not a very complicated app.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And it really has been taking me entirely too long to get it out the door. But nevertheless,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey one of the things I am realizing is that even a very, very, very simple app,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey if you want to include a widget, if you want to include a watch app, if you
⏹️ ▶️ Casey want to include a watch complication, it’s, and I know this is not something novel or
⏹️ ▶️ Casey new, but it is stunning the amount of stuff you have to manage and
⏹️ ▶️ Casey the amount of code you have to write in order to make all of those things happen. And Marco,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey you more than probably anyone would know exactly what all this is about. But
⏹️ ▶️ Casey even for an app like this, which I don’t particularly want to talk about what it is right now, but
⏹️ ▶️ Casey it’s supposed to say it’s very, very, very, very simple. The simplest app I’ve worked on yet. But
⏹️ ▶️ Casey nonetheless, I’d like to have a widget, I would like to have a very basic watch app, I would
⏹️ ▶️ Casey like to have a watch complication. Even using all the modern stuff, it’s all SwiftUI,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey it’s all combined where appropriate. Even using all the modern stuff, it is still
⏹️ ▶️ Casey an astronomical amount of work to get all of these moving parts put together. And
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I’m really going to try hard not to go on a rant because I’ve done this too often lately, but it is very
⏹️ ▶️ Casey frustrating to go digging through Apple’s documentation, which for watch connectivity
⏹️ ▶️ Casey is at least passable, which for Apple is a big compliment. It’s passable documentation,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey but in the case of watch connectivity, which is what they they call sending data back and forth between the watch and
⏹️ ▶️ Casey the iOS app, there are several different mechanisms by which you can do it, which in and of itself,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that’s fine. I don’t have a problem with that. And there’s different trade-offs between each of these
⏹️ ▶️ Casey different mechanisms, which here again, okay, that’s fine. But what they don’t do a particularly great job of
⏹️ ▶️ Casey is telling you, well, if you’re doing this sort of thing, this is what you want to use. If you’re doing
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that sort of thing, use the other thing. If you’re doing this third thing, you should look over
⏹️ ▶️ Casey there and they kind of like get a little vaguely in that direction. But in the documentation that
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I saw, I never really found a good clear document,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey a more high level document as to, when you’re doing this, choose that. And
⏹️ ▶️ Casey this feels like the sort of thing that has probably been covered in a WWDC session at some point, but- It
⏹️ ▶️ Casey hasn’t. Okay, nevermind.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco I can tell you the answer though right
⏹️ ▶️ Marco now. Do you wanna know the answer right now? I would love to. Okay, never use application context,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Oh, that’s what I was gonna
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco use. Oh, this
⏹️ ▶️ Marco okay. You can use the message passing interface
⏹️ ▶️ Marco where it’s like send message with a dictionary and you can put arbitrary info in the dictionary. That works great.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Now, but slow down though because there’s two different mechanisms for this.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey user info, which is not real time. And then there’s
⏹️ ▶️ Casey what they actually call messages, which is the watch app is actively running as we speak
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and you are actively sending a message back and forth while both the watch and iPhone apps are running. So are you talking
⏹️ ▶️ Casey about that? Or are you talking about this user info thing where it’s, ah, it’ll get there eventually?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco No, that. And the other method is file transfers, which never work. So basically, you can’t use
⏹️ ▶️ Marco file transfers because they don’t work reliably. You can’t use application context. It doesn’t work reliably.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco The only one that works reliably is when both apps are running, the one where they communicate with dictionaries back
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and forth, user info dictionaries. That being said, there’s size limits to what
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you can put in there. Underscore found that I think it’s something like 65, 64K, something like that. In that ballpark.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey then the watch app,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco when it sends a message to the phone app, the watch app is able to wake up the phone app with one of those messages,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco but not vice versa. The
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John phone app can’t wake up
⏹️ ▶️ Marco app. Yep, yep, yep. So this is why like this, the entire watch connectivity framework
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and its real world performance and pitfalls and unreliability
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is one of the biggest reasons why I’ve had so many problems developing watch apps for Overcast
⏹️ ▶️ Marco over the years. And it’s one of the biggest reasons why the current watch app,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco which was like recently rewritten, as we discussed, is mostly avoiding
⏹️ ▶️ Marco watch connectivity and trying to communicate mostly over the internet, over my sync servers instead.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Because anything you can do to avoid watch connectivity will be better for your mental health.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Sorry. So you’re saying, have you played with transfer user info? Because there’s application context,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey which you’ve already spoken about. Then there’s user info, which seems to be to be maybe intended to be slightly
⏹️ ▶️ Casey closer to real time question. Oh no, I’m sorry. No, I have that wrong. I think application context is supposed to be closer
⏹️ ▶️ Casey to real to see this is what I’m talking about. It’s
⏹️ ▶️ Marco tell. And if you read the documentation, it says like, Oh, use application context as basically like a,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a persistent version of those back and forth really reliable dictionaries so that if one of the apps
⏹️ ▶️ Marco isn’t running, it’ll pick up the latest
⏹️ ▶️ Marco context, which by the way is only one way. It only goes from phone to watch, not vice versa.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco There’s so many little exceptions and gotchas. So yeah,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco try to minimize how much you rely on this framework and the functionality of the phone app talking to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the watch app, because any amount of this that you do, you’re gonna regret.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Super. I knew this was my future, but it’s so frustrating. So
⏹️ ▶️ Casey actually, if you, the listener, have had experience with this and have
⏹️ ▶️ Casey anecdata that you would like to share with me, I would be happy to accept it via Twitter. Please don’t clog
⏹️ ▶️ Casey my email. Via Twitter, at Casey Liss. Don’t bother Marco. Don’t bother John. They didn’t ask for
⏹️ ▶️ Casey this. I’m asking for this. I would love to hear your experience because, yeah, I was going to,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey after having spoken to James Thompson in front of the show, I was going to go down the application context route, but if you’re telling
⏹️ ▶️ Casey me that’s unreliable and buggy, then ugh. And to be fair, the only thing I’m really trying to
⏹️ ▶️ Casey transfer is something itty bitty, which is basically like, how can I describe
⏹️ ▶️ Casey this while still being general? You can make one of 15 or 20 choices within the app.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And I basically need to know which choice did you make and what numeral is associated with that choice. And gentlemen,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I can tell you about it after the show. But suffice to say, it’s basically a class name
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and an integer, and that’s all I need to send. So in that sense, I’m not worried about data, their size limits or anything like that, but
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that doesn’t necessarily negate your point that it’s just straight up unreliable to go back and forth. That’s
⏹️ ▶️ Casey unsurprising but frustrating. So yeah, documentation. Some
⏹️ ▶️ Casey higher level documentation would be really, really nice. Like some flow chart or table.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey If you’re trying to do this at such and such a speed, use this. If you’re trying to transfer a file,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey get screwed because you’re not going to end up anywhere happy. I don’t know, it’s
⏹️ ▶️ Casey frustrating. I just want, all I want at WWDC, which we’ll talk about later, all I want, please, please,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey can we have better documentation, please, please. And yes, in the chat room,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey from everything I’ve gathered, Marco is exactly right, that going through the internet, through
⏹️ ▶️ Casey the internet, is faster than using watch connectivity, and certainly more reliable if
⏹️ ▶️ Marco faster. Maybe not, well, it can be faster sometimes. The Apple Watch by default
⏹️ ▶️ Marco tries to transfer as much as possible over Bluetooth instead of Wi-Fi, because Bluetooth is much lower
⏹️ ▶️ Marco power consuming. Bluetooth though, it is lower power, but it’s also way slower. And that’s why for file
⏹️ ▶️ Marco transfers, downloading a file directly from the internet, which will usually
⏹️ ▶️ Marco prefer a wifi connection, is faster than transferring the file from
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the phone to the watch over the same network. It’s a whole thing.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco But the main reason thing, the big reason is the reliability. Because
⏹️ ▶️ Marco if the watch tries to talk to the phone, it’s hard to really know whether that communication channel
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is open and reliable and fast and not clogged with junk, as opposed to like the internet, you can
⏹️ ▶️ Marco just make the connection directly with the same APIs that you make any other connection with from iOS and it just works.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Neat. Although background transfers don’t, background downloads rather, have significantly more restrictions
⏹️ ▶️ Marco on the watch and are even less reliable. That’s a lot of fun too.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Well, to say that I’m not too worried about for me anyway, but for you, oh, that does not sound fine.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, there’s basically no way to make an Apple Watch podcast
⏹️ ▶️ Marco app that downloads episodes locally that works well for everyone.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Cool. I’ve tried every way to do it. I’ve seen other apps that do it various different ways. Every
⏹️ ▶️ Marco single app has a large number of five-star reviews saying this new method works great,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and a large number of one-star reviews saying they changed it and now it doesn’t work for me. and there’s
⏹️ ▶️ Marco all sorts of conditions and problems and it’s just a nightmare. So try
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to avoid making an iOS podcast app for many reasons like competing with me, but also
⏹️ ▶️ Marco try to avoid needing a watch app local downloads because it’s no fun.
More Tesla Wheels of Shame
⏹️ ▶️ Casey All right, let’s cheer each other up a little bit. Let’s talk about the Tesla Wheel of Shame stencil
⏹️ ▶️ Casey edition, and in fact, other editions as well. So we have had
⏹️ ▶️ Casey listeners from around the world tell us and send us photographic evidence of all the different kinds of Tesla
⏹️ ▶️ Casey demarcations and graffiti that they found. John, since you’ve been so quiet recently, would you like to
⏹️ ▶️ Casey take us on a tour? Would you prefer me to do that?
⏹️ ▶️ John Actually, I had some things to say about your Twitter client stuff, but you went on so long we probably shouldn’t belabor it, but
⏹️ ▶️ John I’ll just add this. It’s a good thing we have this podcast because Marco would have loved to have told you these things on Twitter,
⏹️ ▶️ John but he couldn’t reply. You had to get advice from James Thompson
⏹️ ▶️ John instead. Yeah, and someone in the chat room, I miss this when it went by
⏹️ ▶️ John before, had a good suggestion for your app or a guess of what your app might be. Tweet a view or read
⏹️ ▶️ John only Twitter clients so people like Marco can’t mess things up. There you go. Fear gold. All right, those
⏹️ ▶️ John are my two Twitter things. But yeah, back to the wheels of shame, the important stuff. I promise this will be the last time. I know we’ve had wheels
⏹️ ▶️ John of shame on like three shows in a row, whatever. They’re just funny and they come with pictures, so I find them appealing. And I understand this is a podcast
⏹️ ▶️ John and you don’t get to see the pictures except the ones that Marco makes the show art, but we will describe them
⏹️ ▶️ John for you. So the first one is the aforementioned stencil one. We mentioned it on
⏹️ ▶️ John the last show, it looks like a neat stencil. This particular one we’re seeing the stencils on, it looks like someone
⏹️ ▶️ John cut a hole in a piece of cardboard and used a can of spray paint through it. And they’re very, very tiny stencils, just a
⏹️ ▶️ John little Tesla T on the spokes. I guess that’s a deterrent. It doesn’t
⏹️ ▶️ John look as bad as the other sloppy. It looks like someone, like a kid, like if you’re trying to like decorate your
⏹️ ▶️ John BMX bike or something, you like spray painted some stencils on it. It’s clear that you were trying to
⏹️ ▶️ John do something neat, but your skills aren’t really up to it. The next one is from San Francisco. I
⏹️ ▶️ John like the style of this one. It is haphazard red spray paint, but only on half the wheel. And no one would do
⏹️ ▶️ John that on purpose. So that’s definitely a look people
⏹️ ▶️ John wouldn’t want on their car.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Something about San Francisco is haphazard.
⏹️ ▶️ John No. Yeah. Then there’s one from Belvedere, California, where the people who run- This one is great. The people who run this service
⏹️ ▶️ John obviously could not deal with the idea of making the wheel ugly. So they tried to do as neat a job
⏹️ ▶️ John as possible. And they took like, what is it? Like a 30 degree slight pie wedge out of it. Basically one spoke.
⏹️ ▶️ John Well, it’s making the Tesla
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s really, I actually like this one a lot. It’s very clever. Me
⏹️ ▶️ John too. Yeah. people the style in cars these days is not to have asymmetrical
⏹️ ▶️ John coloring on your wheels but this has one spoke and the surrounding area is making a little t
⏹️ ▶️ John in red and it looks pretty neatly done i don’t know of any car maker that makes wheels like this on
⏹️ ▶️ John purpose so i think it would still encourage you to swap it for the real one but
⏹️ ▶️ John uh kudos to the person who just couldn’t stand to look sloppy
⏹️ ▶️ Casey no i i love this one so much and this was sent in by alistair logi and and it was
⏹️ ▶️ Casey the The caption was pizza slice in Belvedere, California, which this is kind of what that looks like.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Not only does it look like a pizza slice, but it looks like the Tesla logo. I love this one. I really think this one’s great.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, it’s very clever.
⏹️ ▶️ John And then finally, we have one from the Bay Area from 2016. This may, does this predate the spray
⏹️ ▶️ John paint? When was your first spray paint job, Marko? 2019. All right, so maybe they hadn’t come
⏹️ ▶️ John on this spray paint technique. This one does have a tiny little Tesla logo.
⏹️ ▶️ John It looks like it could even be a sticker on like the inside rim of the wheel. And I think that one
⏹️ ▶️ John probably wouldn’t encourage people to return it because it’s just too small and too subtle. But those were
⏹️ ▶️ John the before times, before they had the technology of haphazardly spray painting something. So thank
⏹️ ▶️ John you everybody from across the world for sending us your ugly Tesla wheels. We will treasure these photos forever.
⏹️ ▶️ John Something like that.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, we’ll laugh at them for a few minutes. Yeah,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that’s more accurate. But Marco won’t be sending you any hearts, I can tell you that right now.
⏹️ ▶️ John Oh, that was my other
⏹️ ▶️ John on the Twitter client thing. Oh, okay,
⏹️ ▶️ John Not to belabor something that I’m sure you all know, but if you
⏹️ ▶️ John want to not reply to tweets, you can do that for free in any Twitter client. You don’t have
⏹️ ▶️ John to have a client that literally stops you from doing it. I understand that having the software
⏹️ ▶️ John help you is good, but at the point where you’re wishing for a mode in an application that will let you
⏹️ ▶️ John fave and not reply, that’s the point when I say it’s time for you to invoke some tiny degree of self-control.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John understand what those
AirPods Max repair surprise
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Oh goodness. All right. So Harrison Krebs wrote us this missive with regard to
⏹️ ▶️ Casey a genuinely frustrating story about AirPods Max warranty repairs. Generally speaking,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I don’t like to give too much attention to these sorts of things because we are not here to be everyone’s crusaders.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I’m sorry. However, this is a good public service announcement. So in summary,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Harrison went and did a warranty repair on bricked AirPods Max. But when he got
⏹️ ▶️ Casey them back, they didn’t include his is ear cushions, which is not desirable at all. So apparently
⏹️ ▶️ Casey it’s Apple’s policy to remove the ear cushions and not send them back after a repair,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey which Harrison didn’t know. And apparently the Apple store employee was supposed to tell Harrison that
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and just kind of didn’t. So this is a public service announcement for everyone. If you’re sending in your AirPods
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Max for warranty repairs, hey, guess what? You’re gonna wanna take those ear cups off.
⏹️ ▶️ John Or at least ask the person at the store about it because who knows if this is a universal policy or whatever,
⏹️ ▶️ John but just FYI, it’s a good thing to know because Apple Store employees are people too. Maybe they forgot
⏹️ ▶️ John to tell you, maybe that person didn’t even know they weren’t gonna come back. I actually kind of understand the policy
⏹️ ▶️ John of not sending you back your things. I think they should come back with brand new ones
⏹️ ▶️ John rather than just taking your old ones and giving them back. But either way, since they come off so easily,
⏹️ ▶️ John if the Apple Store employee had just said, oh, by the way, you’ll wanna take these home because our policy
⏹️ ▶️ John is not to send them back, that would have solved the problem. and I assume that Harrison contacted
⏹️ ▶️ John the Apple store again and said, hey, WTF and got new, you know, ear pads to replace it because it
⏹️ ▶️ John was the store’s fault. They didn’t tell them they would be gone.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, and this is actually fairly consistent with Apple’s other repair methods.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Whenever you send anything in to Apple for repair, they don’t want any accessories that go with it.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And we don’t think of ear pads as accessories to headphones. You kind of can’t use it without them, but like for
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Apple repair parlance, like if you send a watch in for repair, you remove the strap first or they
⏹️ ▶️ Marco do it for you and they hand it back to you. If you send in a laptop, you don’t send the power cord. It is consistent with that. So
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s I don’t consider this like this outrageous thing. How dare they, you know, not send your ear cups back. It’s simply like, oh,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the store person messed up and you know that happens, you know, human error. And yeah, as a John said, I’m sure they I’m sure,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know, talking to the store people. I’m sure they resolved it. But the policy is something that you might not expect
⏹️ ▶️ Marco because you don’t think of headphone ear pads as an accessory that you
⏹️ ▶️ Marco just pop off whenever you want to. But here we are.
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⏹️ ▶️ Casey All right. So I have good news and bad news for everyone, especially the two of you. Uh, there’s
⏹️ ▶️ Casey going to be WWDC this year, which is great, but not in person, which at least for Marco
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and me, I think is bad news. John, I know you’re just devastated that you don’t have to travel to California
⏹️ ▶️ Casey this year for the second consecutive year. Gosh, when was the last time we all saw each other? Was it
⏹️ ▶️ Casey WWDC in 2019? Yeah, maybe.
⏹️ ▶️ John Anyway, there was no question about the WWDC wasn’t gonna be in person. I think we all knew it was going to be remote,
⏹️ ▶️ John but it’s been announced. They announced the dates. Interestingly, like, I mean, I guess it doesn’t really matter because whatever, it’s remote.
⏹️ ▶️ John And it’s, by the way, it’s also free, like it was last year, right? So it’s all online. Anybody can do it, right? And
⏹️ ▶️ John they announced the dates, but they didn’t do anything else, really. I mean, maybe there’s nothing else to do. Did they
⏹️ ▶️ John have us register last year? I don’t remember.
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco I don’t remember. No,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco there was no, like, user input, basically.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah. So it’s just free to everybody. Here it is. It’s here again. The only thing we collectively had to look
⏹️ ▶️ John at was the little invitation graphics, which people got a little bit obsessed with as we do. I mean, they’re
⏹️ ▶️ John not, it’s not an invitation. It’s just a, you know, I don’t know, PR image. Uh, and this year
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s a bunch of, how does Apple say it? They say Memoji or Memoji. They say Memoji, right? I
⏹️ ▶️ Marco believe it varies by presenter, right?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yes. And I think it was officially Memoji and I used to jokingly call it Memoji. And And
⏹️ ▶️ Casey then I think Tim at some point said Memoji and I felt like I could claim victory at that point.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah. Anyway, anyway, it’s got a bunch of those faces looking into a laptop
⏹️ ▶️ John that’s slowly opening in the same way that Craig Fitterigi did in the M1 video, like with all those memes of cracking
⏹️ ▶️ John open the M1 laptop and having the light shine in his face. And what people got obsessed
⏹️ ▶️ John with in this thing is the fact that all of the people who are opening the laptop, but it’s
⏹️ ▶️ John kind of from the same angle as the Craig thing, they’re all wearing glasses. And everyone’s like, oh, glasses.
⏹️ ▶️ John How could they all be wearing glasses? What are the odds of that? Apple glasses, AR glasses, so on and so forth. And then reflected in the
⏹️ ▶️ John glasses are the images of various iOS-style application icons,
⏹️ ▶️ John which doesn’t make a lot of sense. But I guess Xcode’s in there, too.
⏹️ ▶️ John a bunch of application icons reflected in the glasses, which handily explains
⏹️ ▶️ John why everybody has glasses, because you can’t have things reflected in people’s glasses without glasses. You could reflect them in their gigantic
⏹️ ▶️ John eyeballs, because Memoji have giant eyes because they’re very cartoony.
⏹️ ▶️ John I feel like what no one was talking about, except for maybe one person I saw on Twitter, had some part of this.
⏹️ ▶️ John The glasses don’t have any. What are they called? Temples, right? Temple sticks,
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey sticks, no sticks.
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey at least some
⏹️ ▶️ John of the glasses do not have temples. They virtually float, not touching any part of the person’s face
⏹️ ▶️ John because it’s a stylized representation and it’s not literal. So anyway, that’s all we’ve got to go
⏹️ ▶️ John on. I don’t think this says anything one way or the other about Apple glasses. We all know they’re working on AR
⏹️ ▶️ John stuff. Is this the year they announced it? If it is, I don’t think this image has anything to do with it because all of the
⏹️ ▶️ John rumors, especially since all the rumors about AR stuff have not been about the imminent release
⏹️ ▶️ John of things that look like glasses people would wear. They’ve been more like the semi-imminent in the
⏹️ ▶️ John next year or two release of a giant VR headset that looks like an Oculus, but weighs a lot less or whatever.
⏹️ ▶️ John Anyway, so I read nothing into this other than the fact that you need glasses to have reflections and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco That’s about it. Every time there’s an Apple event people always try to read into the art and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the and like Usually if if there’s some kind of like obvious pun with
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the name of a special event That usually is relevant to the products But
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the artwork chosen is almost never relevant and for something like WBDC where
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s it’s relevant and it’s relevant in an obvious way It’s not relevant in a sneaky way. When the
⏹️ ▶️ John art is relevant, it’s relevant in like, like one of them was like the little rotating silver apple
⏹️ ▶️ John that had like a Mac OS behind it or something. And it was because they were going to talk about Mac OS.
⏹️ ▶️ John And like, like whatever the most obvious, and this one, the most obvious interpretation is, hey, they’re
⏹️ ▶️ John playing on the Craig peeking into the laptop from the M1 meme, right? I would assume
⏹️ ▶️ John And that’s true. That’s absolutely true. That’s what they’re doing, right? But you don’t need to go hunting
⏹️ ▶️ John then. Okay, well, that seems too obvious. What else could it be? Right? So,
⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t know. And that’s not to say they’re not gonna do the AR thing because that AR like goggle thing
⏹️ ▶️ John seems like it’s actually getting close to being a product. If they decide to release it at all, it seems like the tech might be ready
⏹️ ▶️ John not to release the product, but to at your developer conference, tell everybody, hey, in eight months,
⏹️ ▶️ John we’re gonna potentially release this thing. So start developing now, here are all the new APIs. Like that could happen.
⏹️ ▶️ John But if that happens, this advertising campaign has probably nothing to do
⏹️ ▶️ John with it. And if it has anything to do with it, it is the most tangential sly nod.
⏹️ ▶️ John There’s even the possibility that if the AR thing is not coming out until three years from now, they would still put glasses on everybody because
⏹️ ▶️ John they’ve been working on this glasses stuff internally for ages. So it’s kind of cheeky to say, I know that
⏹️ ▶️ John you know that we’ve been working on glasses. So here, everyone has glasses. But anyway, here are our announcements for this year.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, and the only thing that they’ve kind of announced, at least obliquely, is
⏹️ ▶️ Casey they said, this year’s conference will include announcements from the keynote and State of the Union stages, online sessions, one-to-one
⏹️ ▶️ Casey labs offering technical guidance, and new ways for developers to interact with Apple engineers and designers to learn about
⏹️ ▶️ Casey the latest frameworks and technologies. That is all we know. It could be something totally
⏹️ ▶️ Casey silly and lame, but maybe it isn’t, and I’m curious to see what that means.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, I forgot about that. That was the, you know, I think it was what I was getting at with the announcement is
⏹️ ▶️ John no one was forcing them to announce this now since no one’s gonna be traveling. It’s not like you need to make plans and you don’t need to
⏹️ ▶️ John register and you don’t need to do anything else. But then why have an announcement without concrete
⏹️ ▶️ John information about certain things? Like they still wanna have a tease aspect of it. So it’s like, we’ve come up with a new way
⏹️ ▶️ John for you to do stuff with us somehow, but we’re not gonna tell you yet. Maybe they haven’t figured
⏹️ ▶️ John it out yet, but plenty of time to figure it out. But I think it is important
⏹️ ▶️ John if Apple continues to do these this way to try to recapture some of the things that are good
⏹️ ▶️ John about being there in person. Maybe they’ll have a clubhouse. Or everyone will just
⏹️ ▶️ Marco As if we’ll still care about clubhouse by June.
⏹️ ▶️ John Didn’t they do last, it wasn’t last WEC, didn’t they do WebEx? I thought so for labs,
⏹️ ▶️ John yeah. And that is so reflective of Apple’s
⏹️ ▶️ John non-hipness when it comes to internet stuff that they would use. It’s not, is it the bottom of the
⏹️ ▶️ John barrel corporate teleconferencing software? Probably close. I think I’ve used them all.
⏹️ ▶️ John Maybe Link, L-Y-N-C is the bottom of the barrel. I don’t know if that’s still made, that Microsoft
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey product. It’s
⏹️ ▶️ Casey not just sucked into Skype now or no?
⏹️ ▶️ John don’t know. But anyway, WebEx is not. It certainly is sucked. WebEx is not cool.
⏹️ ▶️ John WebEx isn’t cool, WebEx isn’t hip, WebEx is a bad app. WebEx destroys your laptop’s
⏹️ ▶️ John battery. Presumably the only reason Apple’s using it is because Apple has no replacement
⏹️ ▶️ John themselves because they have, remember when it was like iChat where you do iChat with multiple people and share a document? They don’t
⏹️ ▶️ John have that anymore. And because presumably it’s what they use internally
⏹️ ▶️ John for Apple corporate stuff, but boy, what a shame. That is a terrible application, and it’s in general
⏹️ ▶️ John a terrible experience to do labs through WebEx. If Apple had
⏹️ ▶️ John its own cool application that does the type of thing that WebEx
⏹️ ▶️ John does and Skype does and Slack does and Teams does and I don’t know, name every
⏹️ ▶️ John other app that lets you do multi-person teleconferences. I’m sure they would use it instead, but they don’t.
⏹️ ▶️ John So it’s WebEx. So that makes me wonder what like, oh, we have a cool new way for you to interact with
⏹️ ▶️ John engineers. Is it still WebEx? Like, now we’re using Microsoft Teams.
⏹️ ▶️ John That’s a cool new way. Anyway, I look forward to see what it is.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, and before everyone writes us, yes, we are aware that FaceTime video exists, but to the best of
⏹️ ▶️ Casey my knowledge, you can’t do like screen sharing or anything like that on FaceTime. So that doesn’t really work for this particular
⏹️ ▶️ John Count yourself lucky if you don’t know what problem these apps are solving, because they solve a problem
⏹️ ▶️ John that most individual people don’t have. But if you work for a business and have been working from home, especially in a company
⏹️ ▶️ John that normally doesn’t work from home, you know the problem they solve, which is essentially, how do I have meetings
⏹️ ▶️ John when not in person? And meetings don’t just involve people talking to each other and
⏹️ ▶️ John seeing each other. meetings always involve presenting things and sharing documents and
⏹️ ▶️ John all that good stuff.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, I mean, I’m excited to see what’s announced. I’m excited to see what a
⏹️ ▶️ Casey second cut at an online conference is. I’m really sad.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Okay, so COVID notwithstanding, there’s no freaking chance if it was in person that I would be going this year. But leaving that aside,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I’m sad not to be seeing you guys. I’m sad not to be seeing, you know, other friends that typically went,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I’m sad not to be doing a live show. I know that the John really, COVID-19 is John’s
⏹️ ▶️ Casey fault because this is the length that John is willing to go to, to avoid doing a live WWDC. It was all down to
⏹️ ▶️ Casey him. It wasn’t anything from, from overseas. It wasn’t a bat. It wasn’t a lab. It was John
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Syracuse. It was his fault. So you can blame him, uh, all because he doesn’t like ATP live shows. Um,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey but nevertheless, I am sad to be missing out on that. I, I really hope
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that next year, if it’s safe, that they bring everyone back in. I am
⏹️ ▶️ Casey super skeptical. I think, I think honestly, if they were to do an in-person
⏹️ ▶️ Casey anything for WWDC, I think they would bring press in for like the keynote and then
⏹️ ▶️ Casey maybe that would be it. I would love for them to do an old school style WWDC. And certainly
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I just noticed as we were talking that at the tail end of their announcement they said to support the local economy
⏹️ ▶️ Casey even while WWDC 21 is hosted online and as part of its 100 million dollar racial equity
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and justice initiative Apple is also committing 1 million dollars to SJ Aspires an education equity initiative
⏹️ ▶️ Casey launched by the city of San Jose. So they’re still pouring some amount of money into San Jose
⏹️ ▶️ Casey which implies to me that they hope one day it’ll come back but I don’t know we’ll
⏹️ ▶️ Casey see. Marco 2022 what’s what do you think is gonna happen you think it’ll be in person somewhat
⏹️ ▶️ Casey in person not all in person, what’s your guess?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco That’s a good question. I mean, this year, yeah, I had no doubt this year would be remote as well, because even
⏹️ ▶️ Marco though the U.S. is doing a pretty impressive job at the speed of our
⏹️ ▶️ Marco vaccinations being deployed out, it is, after all, a worldwide conference, not a
⏹️ ▶️ Marco U.S.-only conference. Many people come from other countries, and the rate of
⏹️ ▶️ Marco vaccinations worldwide is not as fast as it’s happening in the U.S., unfortunately, for lots of
⏹️ ▶️ John Or is there other countries that don’t have the problem that we have at all and wouldn’t want to come to the US because they have zero
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, very true. So anyway, so it makes total sense this year. I have a feeling that next
⏹️ ▶️ Marco year, live events like this will be happening on a regular basis and it won’t
⏹️ ▶️ Marco like, you know, there’s some question, you know, you know, when we will get quote back to normal
⏹️ ▶️ Marco in most ways. And I think we’re gonna see a lot of that this summer and fall. But I think by
⏹️ ▶️ Marco next summer, it’s going to be, we’re going to be pretty back to normal. I don’t think that’s a that’s an unreasonable
⏹️ ▶️ Marco bet to make at this point.
⏹️ ▶️ John An interesting thing about what they’ve done with the live thing last year is that they in the lead up to that and all
⏹️ ▶️ John the you know, the quote unquote normal years before COVID, they slowly essentially made
⏹️ ▶️ John the free real time online for everybody version of WWDC by simply
⏹️ ▶️ John broadcasting the sessions as they air live to everybody for free without needing to register. Right.
⏹️ ▶️ John That, you know, obviously, when they, you know, last year, they recorded them ahead of time. And there’s a very
⏹️ ▶️ John different vibe from a recorded ahead of time produced video than a live one. But practically speaking, if you
⏹️ ▶️ John just want the information and you don’t want to pay anything and you don’t want to travel, Apple was already there.
⏹️ ▶️ John So if they go back to in person, which again, you know, I buy the deal that giving money to San Jose,
⏹️ ▶️ John like what is Apple just going to perpetually give money to San Jose every year just out of, you know, good memories? It seems like they
⏹️ ▶️ John still want to have a relationship with the city, which probably means they’re gonna go back to in person,
⏹️ ▶️ John and they’ll go back to, you know, it’s like, well, why not keep the online thing for everybody? Well, they were already
⏹️ ▶️ John doing that, essentially. The only difference is there’s no way for online people to get on a WebEx with
⏹️ ▶️ John an Apple engineer. And in that respect, like, whatever the capacity is
⏹️ ▶️ John for Apple to, for Apple engineers to interact with people, if that
⏹️ ▶️ John capacity is saturated by the in-person people pay money and go to San
⏹️ ▶️ John Jose, maybe there’s none left for WebEx meetings. Like,
⏹️ ▶️ John I wouldn’t say that you should take time away from the people who paid to be there because they pay all that money and traveled and so they should
⏹️ ▶️ John get something for that. But it does seem more equitable to essentially
⏹️ ▶️ John raffle off lottery worldwide for anybody who attends for free like they
⏹️ ▶️ John were doing like they did last year. It
⏹️ ▶️ John wasn’t it some kind of like slots are open and it’s just a lottery and you just if you want help you file in. There was no preferential
⏹️ ▶️ John system, right? For admission? For labs? For labs,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey yeah. Oh, for labs. I
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I didn’t do any. Uh, yeah, I, no, did I do, I don’t think I did any last year. I’m not sure, to be honest with
⏹️ ▶️ John But anyway, like, that’s the tension that Apple has here. There’s a limited capacity, there’s
⏹️ ▶️ John only so many Apple engineers, right? And so there’s a limited capacity of help they can give. Who should they give that help
⏹️ ▶️ John to? Should it be a random distribution of all developers with no barriers to entry other than having an internet connection like
⏹️ ▶️ John it was last year? Or should it be for the people who could afford to pay the high entrance fee
⏹️ ▶️ John and travel to WWDC to get that help, right? I don’t know. It’s not a
⏹️ ▶️ John clear-cut answer there. Maybe you could say the people who are there in person, some portion
⏹️ ▶️ John of the help will go to the people who are there in person. And when you do get one in person, you get the benefit of
⏹️ ▶️ John person-to-person interaction instead of doing it through WebEx. But some portion should be given to people who couldn’t attend
⏹️ ▶️ John because otherwise it’s not a particularly equitable distribution of Apple’s limited amount of help.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I thought I had heard rumblings last year, the first virtual year, that they actually had way more
⏹️ ▶️ Casey labs bandwidth, and poor choice of words, way more labs availability than they did takers
⏹️ ▶️ Casey on people who wanted to go to the labs.
⏹️ ▶️ John I saw that. I remember at the end of last year, they’re like, hey, we’ve got labs open if anybody wants them. I mean, maybe it’s like that
⏹️ ▶️ John in person too, towards the tail end of the week. I don’t partake of the labs, so I don’t know what the experience
⏹️ ▶️ John is like, but if there is excess capacity, that argues even more strongly for like, give all the access
⏹️ ▶️ John capacity to people online, right? So have people there in person, and if there’s no person takers,
⏹️ ▶️ John certainly, you know, it’s like, everything is like COVID vaccines. So you’ve got leftover vaccines, just give them to whoever wants them,
⏹️ ▶️ John right? Tell, just call Casey up so he can yell at you about documentation for an hour.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, that sounds perfect. Sign me up. I will yell at anyone at Apple about documentation.
⏹️ ▶️ John You’re yelling at the wrong people. Don’t yell at the developers. That’s true. Yeah,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco well, sometimes you yell at the developers, not for documentation, But there is a lot of value in
⏹️ ▶️ Marco going to the labs and finding the one engineer who’s there for your kind of obscure API.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And if you have some kind of question or request, you can actually just tell them. And it actually can get
⏹️ ▶️ John actually love to do that. I would love to find the, this is the problem. This is the problem
⏹️ ▶️ John in my real company, in my real job, and I imagine in many jobs, and also
⏹️ ▶️ John in the case of the one thing that I would want to talk to Apple engineers about. Ownership. Who
⏹️ ▶️ John owns this part of the thingy? Who owns this API? Who owns this framework? Who owns this application? And
⏹️ ▶️ John very often the depressing answer in large corporations is,
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey I don’t know. Oh no, that’s not true at
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco Apple. That’s a bad situation. That’s not true at
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Apple. Apple has different failure modes. Like, nobody right now is. That’s
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John what I’m saying.
⏹️ ▶️ John That’s what I mean by I don’t know. Not like, oh, just this person doesn’t have the knowledge. That the company collectively
⏹️ ▶️ John does not know. Yes.
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco Because if the
⏹️ ▶️ John application, If the application or framework is not broken, and it’s an older thing,
⏹️ ▶️ John and it’s in between the purview of two possible groups, right? Now you think, of course they have to know.
⏹️ ▶️ John What about when someone files a bug? Whose queue does that go into? Obviously, every company knows who owns everything. I can tell you
⏹️ ▶️ John from experience, that is not true. What happens is, there may be a queue for those
⏹️ ▶️ John things, but then different parts of the organization fight over who really owns it, because nobody wants that crap in their queue for
⏹️ ▶️ John real, so it just ends up being like a shoving contest of like, I’m not taking this bug. Oh, it’s not my
⏹️ ▶️ John thing. Well, it’s not your thing, but let’s not look at, look at this. This is my charter of my scrum team. I don’t know. It’s
⏹️ ▶️ John just, it is never ending, right? So for parts of the OS, like the one or two APIs
⏹️ ▶️ John that I need to work for Switch Glass and front and center that apparently nobody owns and nobody cares about because they don’t work reliably.
⏹️ ▶️ John Who owns that? That probably hasn’t changed in like literally a decade. Try to find the group. Oh, it’s probably
⏹️ ▶️ John CoreOS, the catch all group. And then CoreOS is like, uh-uh, don’t try to hoist that on us. We don’t do anything with that. We haven’t touched that
⏹️ ▶️ John in years. It’s fine. There’s no showstopper bugs. ones get that out of my face. Anyway, I just
⏹️ ▶️ John want like two API’s to work reliably. Because like the only two API’s
⏹️ ▶️ John my simple little apps use, and they don’t and I’m sad.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John I’m so sorry, John.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey So my understanding of how Apple works internally, which granted is, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey hearsay upon hearsay, but for things that matter, and I think this is maybe where the differences between
⏹️ ▶️ Casey you and me for things that matter. There is and it’s so funny talking to to people at Apple because
⏹️ ▶️ Casey just like in government contracting, everything is just acronym soup. There’s the ABC and the
⏹️ ▶️ Casey QRS and the TUV and the WIZ and half the time if I’m
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John talking to somebody- DRI, you’re looking for the DRI. Exactly right.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey So that’s exactly what I was driving toward is there’s the DRI, the directly responsible individual. And my understanding,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey again, hearsay, is that there is one person that may be an engineer,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey may be a product or project manager or project owner. I forget what the term is they use internally, but basically
⏹️ ▶️ Casey one person that the buck stops there. And for anything that matters, my understanding is
⏹️ ▶️ Casey there really is a directly responsible individual for anything that they care about. But, John,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey to your point a moment ago, perhaps the things that you care about are not the things that they care
⏹️ ▶️ Casey about, and maybe there isn’t a DRI for that sort of thing. Or alternatively, there’s a DRI, but they really just could not
⏹️ ▶️ Casey care less about your particular problem.
⏹️ ▶️ John That’s probably what it is. And speaking of that, I should just clear this out, because it’s been in our potential
⏹️ ▶️ John after show topics in ages, so I’ll just finish clearing this out. So the one of the APIs that I’m talking about,
⏹️ ▶️ John maybe I’ll leave some more infield, but one of them is the API for NS running applications,
⏹️ ▶️ John which is a very old API that probably is from the next days that in theory tells you information about all the applications that are
⏹️ ▶️ John running. And you can imagine I would need that information for switch glass and potentially also for front and center, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John And this application was described by a very well known and experienced
⏹️ ▶️ John Mac platform developer as the worst API on the Mac. And I was told this before I began my work
⏹️ ▶️ John and after I started working on those apps, I think that person may be right. And this is a person who has been working on
⏹️ ▶️ John the Mac for literal decades. So when they say the worst API on the Mac, they’re not just like a new developer who tried something.
⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t want to name names because this person didn’t tell me, but anyway, this is a very experienced Mac developer calling us the worst API
⏹️ ▶️ John on the Mac. And I will put in the show notes, the radar numbers, the one, two, three, four, five,
⏹️ ▶️ John six radar numbers I got thrown at me from this person when this person was telling me about the API, to
⏹️ ▶️ John say, this is the worst API I’ve been filing. These are radars, not feedbacks, because it was before the feedbacker.
⏹️ ▶️ John These bugs have been there for who knows how many years. They’re never getting fixed. And all the bugs that I was
⏹️ ▶️ John finding with it, I doubt they’re ever gonna fix too. So if you are inside Apple and you think you know who owns
⏹️ ▶️ John NS running application and API that no one cares about and that it works well enough that no one needs to care about,
⏹️ ▶️ John here’s six radar numbers, none of which are from me. Six radar numbers that you can look at And then you can decide
⏹️ ▶️ John once again that they’re not important enough to fix.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I’m so sorry, John. I really honestly am. I really, really honestly am. I don’t know what’s worse
⏹️ ▶️ Casey actually. And I go back and forth. Is it worse to have
⏹️ ▶️ Casey something that a lot of people rely on like watch connectivity
⏹️ ▶️ Casey just really don’t care to fix or is it worse to have something that nobody
⏹️ ▶️ Casey else cares about? So you care that much more, but they still don’t care to
⏹️ ▶️ John And actually, let me throw in my thing here, too, because I think that is an interesting example
⏹️ ▶️ John of what you just described. The one API that I want to work, well, there’s a bunch of APIs that do this. But the thing
⏹️ ▶️ John I want to accomplish on the Mac that is currently impossible to accomplish in a reliable way
⏹️ ▶️ John is to tell an application to bring all of its windows forward. It seems like an important feature
⏹️ ▶️ John of the two applications that I make. and there are multiple APIs to do that. I haven’t
⏹️ ▶️ John tried the accessibility APIs because you have to ask for accessibility permission to do that, and maybe I could do it manually
⏹️ ▶️ John that way, but this is another thing about sandboxing the Mac App Store. I haven’t been willing to go
⏹️ ▶️ John over the hurdle to say, I’m going to request accessibility access because it’s like, you want to let this app
⏹️ ▶️ John read all your keystrokes and record your screen and people flip out, and rightly so, right? I don’t want that access.
⏹️ ▶️ John I just want to say one thing, hey app, bring all your windows to the front. And again, there are multiple APIs
⏹️ ▶️ John to do that, and zero of them work reliably. They work about 98, 99% of the time, but then they
⏹️ ▶️ John just stop working, and there’s no error conditioning, there’s no log messages, and the only recourse is to quit the app
⏹️ ▶️ John or sometimes restart your computer. And what do my dinky little
⏹️ ▶️ John apps do? One really important thing they do is ask applications to bring all their windows to the front, and when that stops
⏹️ ▶️ John working, it’s sad. I even hacked in a little thing where you can switch
⏹️ ▶️ John which API my app is using to do that. Like you can like cycle through them,
⏹️ ▶️ John say, did that API work? Try this one, try that one, try that one. None of them work. When it stops working, it stops working for good.
⏹️ ▶️ John And I feel like even though that’s a bug that no one cares about, if you’re going to hit any APIs on the Mac
⏹️ ▶️ John that say, hey app, bring all your windows to the front, I don’t understand how
⏹️ ▶️ John that can ever stop working or be unreliable. Cause I feel like the window server should
⏹️ ▶️ John own the window layering policy to some degree. It should be able to say, look app, I don’t care
⏹️ ▶️ John what you’re doing. I don’t need any interaction with you whatsoever. I, the Windows server, own your windows
⏹️ ▶️ John and I put them on the screen and I composite them and everything. So I’m simply going to bring as the Windows server all
⏹️ ▶️ John your windows to the front. You don’t even need to be running. You could be hung in an infinite loop because this
⏹️ ▶️ John is Mac OS X and not classic Mac OS. I don’t care if you’re hung app, I’m bringing all your windows to the front.
⏹️ ▶️ John But no, no API does that reliably. It makes me very sad.
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Siri voice choice
⏹️ ▶️ Casey So we heard some breaking news earlier today, I believe, that Apple has added
⏹️ ▶️ Casey two brand new Siri voices that will no longer default to a female voice in the latest version of
⏹️ ▶️ Casey iOS, which is now in beta. This is, I think, from TechCrunch. I’m not really sure what the source
⏹️ ▶️ Casey is here, but Apple is adding two new voices to Siri’s English offerings and eliminating the default, quote, female voice, quote, selection
⏹️ ▶️ Casey in the latest beta version of iOS. This means that every person setting up Siri will choose a voice for themselves and it will no longer default
⏹️ ▶️ Casey to the voice assistant being female. Seems good. I haven’t heard it yet. I think there’s a sample
⏹️ ▶️ Casey out there, but I just haven’t had a chance to hear it. But it sounds good to me.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, like what’s nice about this is, you know, like throughout
⏹️ ▶️ Marco our history as a society of trying to give people more rights, equal treatment, trying to,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know, clamp down on stereotypes and, you know, misogyny and stuff like that,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the more weird old assumptions that we can break,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco generally the better things are. Culturally in America, most robot
⏹️ ▶️ Marco voice assistant things, whether you’re hearing it on a phone menu or something like that, have been female.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And that assumption isn’t true everywhere. In the UK, they’re usually male. It’s just
⏹️ ▶️ Marco different in different places. But it’s this assumption that we’ve had for forever in
⏹️ ▶️ Marco our society. like, oh, like the assistant voice should be female. And that’s based
⏹️ ▶️ Marco on some pretty terrible assumptions of general reversals and everything over time. And so what
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Apple’s doing here is effectively breaking that assumption and making you choose which
⏹️ ▶️ Marco style of voice you want to hear as your Siri assistant, not just assuming and making a default
⏹️ ▶️ Marco saying, okay, in America, it’s always gonna be a female voice, in the UK, it’s always gonna be a male voice, like breaking that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco assumption now. And that’s generally a good thing, I think.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, and there’s a, I don’t know if this was Siri related, but there was a couple of links going around a few weeks ago about
⏹️ ▶️ John like, why do computer voice assistants have to be gendered at all or binary
⏹️ ▶️ John gendered at all? Like a computer doesn’t have, like all this is just to make people feel more comfortable, right? Oh, it’s a little person inside
⏹️ ▶️ John a computer. Well, of course we know it’s not actually a person, but it makes us feel comfortable and interact with something that sounds like a person.
⏹️ ▶️ John But there’s no reason that you need to just pick, oh, it’s male-ish sounding, meaning a deeper voice or
⏹️ ▶️ John female-ish sounding. And so there was a bunch of voice assistants demos, maybe it was from Microsoft, I don’t know, someone will
⏹️ ▶️ John probably find the link, if not this week, then by next week, showing essentially, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ John non-binary gendered voices. And I thought they were pretty amazing. Like, why shouldn’t
⏹️ ▶️ John your computer sound like that? And the idea of giving
⏹️ ▶️ John you a choice and making you select, now, people may just end up selecting according to
⏹️ ▶️ John the stew, the cultural stew that they’ve brought up in, and maybe most Americans will pick female for exactly
⏹️ ▶️ John the same reason that the default was unthinkingly female, or you know what I mean? It’s just like, again, the culture of
⏹️ ▶️ John traditional gender roles in your particular country. And what Apple’s trying to do is not perpetuate
⏹️ ▶️ John that by just saying, oh, yeah, no, we’re just going to pick the thing that we think you’re comfortable with already, right? They’re
⏹️ ▶️ John not stopping you from picking whatever you’re comfortable with. And maybe the ratio of people picking one or the other will be
⏹️ ▶️ John exactly the same. And you could even get down to the point of like, OK, well, what order are the options going to be in? because
⏹️ ▶️ John the sort of cultural hegemony of the assistant is female
⏹️ ▶️ John and the assistant is subservient to, is the service worker or whatever, is so
⏹️ ▶️ John big in this country and probably in the world that if they put the female option first,
⏹️ ▶️ John that will cause it to be selected even more because that’s what people expect. So it seems to me that they should actually
⏹️ ▶️ John have to randomize the options to give all of us a fighting chance to not
⏹️ ▶️ John succumb to our default programming. This is like the version of the tyranny of the defaults we talk about, where
⏹️ ▶️ John like in your application, whatever you set as the default for some preference, almost everyone’s going
⏹️ ▶️ John to go with that because most people don’t care enough about that option or aren’t even aware that it could be in an option
⏹️ ▶️ John to dig into your preferences and find the setting for it. In fact, they might complain that your program doesn’t do this
⏹️ ▶️ John thing that it does. That’s the tyranny of the defaults. And tyranny of defaults has an analog in real
⏹️ ▶️ John life, which is just like society and culture. And when you grow up in it, you don’t think that there, You might not even
⏹️ ▶️ John think that there is a child. Well, that’s just the way things are. Secretaries are women. How do I know that? Everybody knows that.
⏹️ ▶️ John Haven’t you seen TV and movies and the entire culture of the entire world that I’ve spent my entire life in? Of
⏹️ ▶️ John course secretaries are women. And nurses are women and doctors are men. And like, you know, unthinkingly
⏹️ ▶️ John adhering to these stereotypes. And so when some people see this, they’re like, oh, changing
⏹️ ▶️ John the voice on Siri. Congratulations. I’m sure that will help women everywhere. Every little bit, Every
⏹️ ▶️ John one of these things is one tiny, you know, one tiny pebble
⏹️ ▶️ John taken off a pile. It doesn’t fix the world, but if you don’t do this, then everyone will just continue
⏹️ ▶️ John to assume, oh, well, my assistant has to be female because assistants are females just like secretaries and nurses, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John So I applaud this move. I don’t quite know why it took so long. I also don’t understand
⏹️ ▶️ John why the default was male in the UK and female in the US for so long because it seems like there was some
⏹️ ▶️ John understanding within Apple that these cultural differences mean things,
⏹️ ▶️ John but like, why not take the next step and say, but yeah, should we, should it be our position at Apple to
⏹️ ▶️ John unthinkingly perpetuate them or to serve them? Or should we instead do what we can to
⏹️ ▶️ John try to make things again, more equitable by just letting the user pick
⏹️ ▶️ John from a randomly ordered selection of choices. And I’ll be excited if they throw in a few non-binary
⏹️ ▶️ John choices there too, because I think they sound cool.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yep, agreed. And I found a couple of examples, mostly thanks to the chat room, of
⏹️ ▶️ Casey recordings of these that you can listen to after the fact. All right.
Ubiquiti’s in trouble
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Last week we had an Ask ATP with regard to how we would set up networking in a
⏹️ ▶️ Casey fantasy, you know, new house or something like that. And Marco, as you
⏹️ ▶️ Casey want to do, recommended something that you really like. And you had some caveats and some gotchas about it, but
⏹️ ▶️ Casey you had said in the past, up until about a year ago, Ubiquiti, which is a manufacturer
⏹️ ▶️ Casey of Unify stuff, you’ve had really, you have had really good experiences with
⏹️ ▶️ Casey them up until semi recently. And then you had kind of self backpedaled, if you
⏹️ ▶️ Casey will, a little bit last week to say, well, it used to be much better than it is now. I’m not so sure.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Is that fair? So far?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, basically, you know, I’ve been using ubiquity stuff for many, many years for my home networking.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And it’s been rock solid for the most part, for I mean, geez, I’m maybe
⏹️ ▶️ Marco six, seven years, I’ve been using it for a long time. But that the the latest
⏹️ ▶️ Marco hardware from them bit the the ubiquity dream machine router series. It seems like the Wi-Fi
⏹️ ▶️ Marco access points are all still fine, but the Dream Machine router and the software that goes with it
⏹️ ▶️ Marco seems unreliable and they keep moving the software forward in very aggressive ways.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And in ways that they seem to have adopted a move fast and break things attitude,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco which is not generally what you want from your router. You kind of want your router to be old
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and boring and you know, just work well and not break anything for reasons.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So that culture might have come back to bite them slightly.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, so there was a breach that happened, I guess, late last year,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and Ubiquity seems to have admitted to it to a degree. I think
⏹️ ▶️ Casey they said some third-party cloud provider had had a breach that’s associated with them. And I believe that’s
⏹️ ▶️ Casey pretty much all they said. Well, there was an article that we’ll put in the show notes a whistleblower reached
⏹️ ▶️ Casey out to them and they called the whistleblower Adam.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And the whistleblower said it was considerably bigger than Ubiquiti’s leading on. So I’m gonna try
⏹️ ▶️ Casey to grab just a few quotes from here. In reality, this is from the article, in reality, Adam said the attackers
⏹️ ▶️ Casey had gained administrative access to Ubiquiti servers at Amazon’s cloud service, which secures the underlying server
⏹️ ▶️ Casey hardware and software that requires the cloud tenant or client to secure access to any data stored there. Adam says
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that the attackers had gained access to privileged credentials that were previously stored in the last pass account of a Ubiquiti
⏹️ ▶️ Casey IT employee and gained root administrator access to all Ubiquiti AWS accounts,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey including all S3 data buckets, all application logs, all databases, all user database credentials
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and secrets required to forge single sign-on cookies. I could go on and on actually
⏹️ ▶️ Casey about this. Supposedly they were threatened, they were threatened, the attackers
⏹️ ▶️ Casey wanted $2.8 million in order to keep quiet. And so they
⏹️ ▶️ Casey actually wanted it, of course, in Bitcoin. And I had assumed, oh, that must be like 1,000 Bitcoin. Oh, no. $2.8 million apparently
⏹️ ▶️ Casey at the time of writing was 50 Bitcoin, which is just preposterous to me. Please
⏹️ ▶️ Casey don’t email me. I don’t care about Bitcoin. But anyway, I just thought that was fun.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, can we pause on that for one moment? People occasionally request that we talk
⏹️ ▶️ Marco about the world of cryptocurrency. I could not possibly care less about the world of cryptocurrency.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I have very little knowledge of it, but it’s mainly I just have no interest. And there seems to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco be, like, there’s a lot of people out there who absolutely are super into it, super involved,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco super interested. I almost feel like it’s a different world of tech than the world that we
⏹️ ▶️ Marco live in. And while there might be a very small amount of overlap, I don’t think it’s
⏹️ ▶️ Marco much more than that. And it’s like people who are super into stock trading and stuff.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Like it’s a different form of financial gambling and instruments and everything. And I just couldn’t
⏹️ ▶️ Marco care less about that stuff. I have no interest in it. And
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it seems like there’s so much there to know that if you’re gonna be into it, you gotta be really
⏹️ ▶️ Marco into it. Or you have to not be into all the stuff I’m into in order to even have time to keep up with
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it and to do it correctly and well and everything. And so all of you out
⏹️ ▶️ Marco there, if whatever portion of our audience is interested in that, I’m sorry,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’m really not. And so I’m never gonna wanna talk about it. And that’s just, there’s a lot that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco we don’t cover on the show because tech is a very big world. And for me, it’s gotta be,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the whole world of cryptocurrency is part of that. I just have no knowledge and no interest
⏹️ ▶️ John Well, kind of like the financial instruments that you mentioned before, despite the fact that you have no
⏹️ ▶️ John interest in it, unfortunately, like the stock market and various financial instruments, it does potentially
⏹️ ▶️ John have an effect on your life, if you remember 2008, for example. So lots of times, things that we don’t
⏹️ ▶️ John have any interest in, it just seemed like there were a bunch of people playing in a world that doesn’t affect us, when
⏹️ ▶️ John it starts to get into the financial system, when they mess up real bad, it can affect us. So
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s one of those things where even if you don’t actually know anything about it, it would behoove you to know
⏹️ ▶️ John enough about it to know what side you’re on and what you want to lobby for and who you might want
⏹️ ▶️ John to vote for in elections and so on and so forth, respect to cryptocurrency, just like the financial system, which
⏹️ ▶️ John I’d have no interest in whatsoever, but has in my very short lifetime affected me in very profound ways already
⏹️ ▶️ John and all of us. So we can’t just let the people over there play
⏹️ ▶️ John with their stocks and collateralized debt obligations and everything. reason I even know what a collateralized
⏹️ ▶️ John debt obligation is, is because of the 2008 financial crash, right? I didn’t know about what any of those things are, but
⏹️ ▶️ John boy, eventually we all had to know, kind of like we all had to know about like viruses and stuff and
⏹️ ▶️ John with the COVID thing. So
⏹️ ▶️ John not that having some foundational baseline knowledge of cryptocurrency is probably going to save us, but it’s
⏹️ ▶️ John probably better to know something a little sooner rather than to just read about it after
⏹️ ▶️ John the world is totally destroyed by people mining for Bitcoin
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, and the small amount of opinion I do have about it is not positive,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco because I am familiar with the general idea of how it works. I am also familiar
⏹️ ▶️ Marco with the immense amount of energy consumption it’s causing around the world.
⏹️ ▶️ John That’s all free energy that no one was using, Marco.
⏹️ ▶️ John it was going to waste. if it wasn’t for bit coin, that energy would just be falling on the floor and rotting. Do you not want people
⏹️ ▶️ John to use that energy?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco God anyway before we get it, I mean believe me, you think tesla people are bad, but the email
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John this now crypto
⏹️ ▶️ John cards of you don’t listen to the show
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John anyway. No, it’s so sure
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s a yes like to me like that whole world. It’s like like I love computers
⏹️ ▶️ Marco for what we used to use computers for like what used to be the only thing we use computers
⏹️ ▶️ Marco for is like messing around like making documents and images and audio and video and and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know, sending things back and forth, communicating back and forth with each other. And this seems like, hey,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco what if we used computers to generate this entire financial world of complex financial instruments? And I’m like,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco okay, I you’ve lost me now. You’re what you’re really talking about is finance
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and it doesn’t have that much to do with the computers anymore. And that’s that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that goes well beyond my interest or knowledge. And again, and the little bit I do know about
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it really rubs me the wrong way, from lots of reasons. From the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco attitude of a lot of the people in that world, which it does seem like a lot of them come from the world of
⏹️ ▶️ Marco finance and stuff like that, which is not my scene at all, as well as the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco environmental issues it causes. And it just seems, and just the attitude
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of like, the presumption that this is going to take over everything and that all of
⏹️ ▶️ Marco us simpletons using fiat currency are somehow like wrong
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John or old dinosaurs. And it’s like-
⏹️ ▶️ John You know enough of the vocabulary to know the terms that you wouldn’t otherwise have any reason
⏹️ ▶️ John to know. So it’s getting to you.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I mean, literally everything about it that I know rubs me the wrong way with the sole exception that I
⏹️ ▶️ Marco think the technological concept of how it works is interesting technologically,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco but that’s where my, Like that’s where the positive feelings I have about it end.
⏹️ ▶️ John I predict we will talk about it, yes, even more than we are now. In a future episode, at some point
⏹️ ▶️ John related to the NFT stuff, but not
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco this week. Are we still talking about those? And I wish
⏹️ ▶️ John not this week. And I wish I could find, we should end by saying me trying
⏹️ ▶️ John to find the originator of this amazing tweet that I still, this is the problem with the internet. I can’t tell who originated
⏹️ ▶️ John this tweet because people could just be copying and pasting it or whatever. It was the explanation of Bitcoin from 2018, potentially
⏹️ ▶️ John by the person who will link in the show notes that says, you all know what Bitcoin is? Imagine if keeping your car
⏹️ ▶️ John idling 24-7 produced solve-sudokus you could trade for heroin.
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco I know, I’ve said that before. It’s pretty good. You have
⏹️ ▶️ John to know a lot of Bitcoin to understand how every part of that sentence makes sense. But it’s
⏹️ ▶️ John also depressingly accurate.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, and you know, I haven’t had a chance to weigh in. I’ll be very brief. I agree with almost everything Marco
⏹️ ▶️ Casey said. If it wasn’t for the fact that this is accelerating the heat death of the universe, I would probably be far
⏹️ ▶️ Casey more interested in it. Just a month or so ago, I went, I
⏹️ ▶️ Casey didn’t do a deep dive, but I started looking into, because I did not understand how it worked at all. And
⏹️ ▶️ Casey there was a really good video on YouTube that’s almost half an hour, but it’s excellent. And it’s by 3Blue1Brown,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and I’d never heard of this channel before. We’ll link it in the show notes. If you want to know from a nerd’s perspective,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey but yet approachable from a non-nerd’s perspective, how does this actually work? I really, really recommend it because
⏹️ ▶️ Casey it helped me understand, even after having read many, many things about it, it wasn’t until I watched this video that I was like,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey oh, okay, I got it. And yeah, I agree with you, Marco. Like, not only is the scene not for me,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and not only does everyone seem to think much in the same way of Tesla people, that they are
⏹️ ▶️ Casey the one true people that really understand, and all you sheeple just don’t get it,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey blah, blah, blah. It’s exactly. It’s just like Tesla people. Oh, you idiots
⏹️ ▶️ Casey with your internal combustion engines, blowing up dinosaurs.
⏹️ ▶️ John Oh, let’s say more, more charitably, when people are tech enthusiasts, as we are, it’s easy
⏹️ ▶️ John to get excited about a new technology. We are often excited about new technologies. I certainly am,
⏹️ ▶️ John right? It just so happens that sometimes some of those new technologies that people get excited about and form communities
⏹️ ▶️ John around have, let’s say, externalities that turn other people off.
⏹️ ▶️ John Even Tesla, which is doing a good thing. Electric cars, yay, right? That’s good, right? And yeah, it is.
⏹️ ▶️ John But maybe when the fans get a little bit too enthusiastic and too excited about defending
⏹️ ▶️ John the thing that they are a fan of, that gets a little bit toxic. But in the case of things like Bitcoin or other,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, anything where there is exciting technology, and like you said,
⏹️ ▶️ John Casey, some of the ideas behind Bitcoin are very clever and interesting and worth pursuing, kind of get overshadowed
⏹️ ▶️ John by the reality of, okay, but then what changes
⏹️ ▶️ John is this actually causing to happen in the world, and how do I feel about those changes as someone who isn’t enthusiastic about this
⏹️ ▶️ John technology. And that’s where people end up getting conflict.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah. So anyway, it is worth checking out. If you listen to the show, if
⏹️ ▶️ Casey you enjoy the show, it is likely that you have enough of a nerd’s brain, and I mean that in a complimentary way,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that you would enjoy reading up on this and learning about it. And like I said, this 26 minute and 20
⏹️ ▶️ Casey second video really helped me anyway understand how it works. All right, all that behind us at least for now.
Ubiquiti’s (still) in trouble
⏹️ ▶️ Casey So yeah, apparently Ubiquiti really kind of screwed up. Back
⏹️ ▶️ Casey to Ubiquiti. Yeah, back to Ubiquiti. Speaking of screw-ups,
⏹️ ▶️ John Are they using all of our routers to mine for Bitcoin? What’s going
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that’s it! It all comes full circle, guys. It all comes full circle.
⏹️ ▶️ John You don’t need to start that rumor on the show. That is not true.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Oh, yeah, God, please no. But no, all kidding and snark aside, this is some stuff.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Like, this seems to me, and gosh, it’s been a long time since I’ve really run anything
⏹️ ▶️ Casey server-side. So Marco, jump in on, or actually both of you jump in and correct me, but it seems to me like
⏹️ ▶️ Casey a lot of this stuff was kind of amateur hour and that they really should have known better than to
⏹️ ▶️ Casey make a lot of these mistakes. And golly, if you’re already in a position where some of
⏹️ ▶️ Casey your most, you know, diehard supporters like Marco, and again, and I mean that in a complimentary way,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey you know, you had said for years, Marco, this stuff is the best. Yeah, it’s expensive, but it’s the best. It’s so good, blah, blah, blah.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And you had already been backpedaling some as of literally a week ago, and now, oh,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey yikes, I don’t know if I wanna go anywhere near this.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I mean, here’s the thing, I mean, we don’t know that much about this yet, and honestly, I don’t follow
⏹️ ▶️ Marco this world very closely normally. So, it’s hard to expect
⏹️ ▶️ Marco any company to be perfect all the time. Sure. Something like, you know, Ubiquiti, they mostly serve,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco or they mostly sell, like, networking gear to companies. So they have to be expected
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to have pretty good security, because their devices are kind of assumed to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco have good security themselves because they’re being brought into serious businesses and places where there’s high stakes if
⏹️ ▶️ Marco their devices are compromised. So it is important, it’s like a server vendor,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it is important that they are trustworthy and that they are viewed as following pretty good security
⏹️ ▶️ Marco practices. It is also important that they communicate
⏹️ ▶️ Marco clearly when there is a problem or when there is a breach. And in this case,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you can argue whether they should’ve had this breach at all. And I don’t know enough about it to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco know what was involved, how, if they were practicing reasonably
⏹️ ▶️ Marco secure and responsible practices beforehand, I don’t know. What I do know
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is that if this accusation is true, again, that’s a big if,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco because you have to wonder, could this be some kind of stock manipulation
⏹️ ▶️ Marco scheme? They’re a public company, I think, right? Oh yeah, they are, right? Yeah, so like, it could be some kind of weird thing like that, we don’t actually
⏹️ ▶️ Marco know if this accusation is true or not, but if it is true, what it points
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to is, I don’t think anything like super damning about their security practices,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco but it does point to a pretty big problem that they might have like underrepresented
⏹️ ▶️ Marco or lied about a pretty substantial breach. That is worrisome if that is true.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco But that being said, what this means for me And for people out there who have Ubiquiti gear,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s one of those moments that gives you pause about some of the features that we have enabled on these
⏹️ ▶️ Marco routers and stuff, and some of the abilities they have, and whether we should enable them or not. So for
⏹️ ▶️ Marco instance, on my Ubiquiti stuff, I have auto updates turned on. I have it, whenever
⏹️ ▶️ Marco there’s a software update, I have it installed at a certain time and automatically reboot if it has to at a certain time that won’t disrupt things.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco You know, when something like this happens, you realize, oh, maybe I shouldn’t have auto update on, because
⏹️ ▶️ Marco if somebody compromises their update channel and has the ability to arbitrarily
⏹️ ▶️ Marco sign any updates they want as valid and push them out to all customers, well, that could be pretty
⏹️ ▶️ Marco bad for me. On the other hand, maybe I do want automatic updates because that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco lets them patch security holes faster as they’re found, right? So there’s stuff to consider there. There’s also
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the entire model of Ubiquiti’s routers and stuff, I don’t know if people who don’t have them,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco they probably don’t know about this kind of stuff. There’s a whole bunch of remote management
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and cloud-based features of Ubiquiti stuff. So you don’t just have a router
⏹️ ▶️ Marco running in your house that you log into at like 192.168.1.1 anymore.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco That is there still, but you can sign into it from anywhere if you have that enabled and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you can manage things centrally with like your central Ubiquiti account where you’re actually not just signing into your
⏹️ ▶️ Marco router, you’re signing into like Ubiquiti as their single sign-on thing for like their service and then you can access
⏹️ ▶️ Marco your stuff through their service from anywhere. You can have all this cloud-based everything about your local network and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco its management. So maybe we don’t need to enable those features as home users. Maybe like, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’ve been using that because it’s convenient sometimes, but something like this makes me question,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco do I really need that? Maybe I should be like just setting it up once and then just turning off
⏹️ ▶️ Marco auto updates and turning off remote stuff and only updating it manually like once a year
⏹️ ▶️ Marco when I think about it and when I feel like it and then going to check, you know. Maybe I should go back to a system like that, which used to be
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the way I would always do things on routers because it didn’t really matter most of the time. You know, I don’t usually
⏹️ ▶️ Marco enable remote management of anything on my home network because I don’t usually need it. So maybe I should
⏹️ ▶️ Marco go back to something like that. And I think this kind of breach should make all Ubiquiti customers ask these questions of themselves.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And then finally, if you’re able to, this probably also should remind you to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco maybe, maybe not assume that your internal network is secure
⏹️ ▶️ Marco by default. And that might change like what kind of services you offer locally inside your
⏹️ ▶️ Marco network. Uh, whether you, whether you have passwords on things like file shares or
⏹️ ▶️ Marco not, I’ve always just had passwords on stuff because I’ve always kind of assumed like, well, if you know, if
⏹️ ▶️ Marco some, you know, kid comes over with their weird, you know, Nissan switch
⏹️ ▶️ Marco or iPad or whatever, and I give them our wifi password, I don’t have a VLAN set up or anything like that. I’m, I don’t get that complicated.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Like what if their device gets hacked or they share the password and then other people can get on my Wi-Fi
⏹️ ▶️ Marco network, you know, I don’t need to know that every single device on my network is always going to be trusted and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco secured because all the things I run inside my network. I assume to be
⏹️ ▶️ Marco requiring some base level of security requiring passwords and user accounts and stuff like that, you know, so
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it would be a good idea to also revisit those kind of assumptions for people who are looking at this and getting worried. like
⏹️ ▶️ Marco if somebody has access to something running on your network, what do they have access to?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And if you can minimize that, that’s probably a good idea because even if you run
⏹️ ▶️ Marco some other router and this problem doesn’t apply to you, we live in a world full of like internet
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of things, crap devices and everything. And it’s only a matter of time before something
⏹️ ▶️ Marco on your network gets hacked by somebody and has some kind of vulnerability that doesn’t get
⏹️ ▶️ Marco patched or whatever. And so something, something hostile will be on your Wi-Fi network eventually. So
⏹️ ▶️ Marco this is this is a good way to kind of like think about what the risks there are and think about how
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you want how you want to manage those. And then again going back to Ubiquiti thinking about with with Ubiquiti stuff like
⏹️ ▶️ Marco do you want to enable auto updating and do you want remote access? And I think the answer here
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is going to for a lot of people is now going to be maybe not.
⏹️ ▶️ John I think this gets to the heart of what you were saying before about communication from the company because
⏹️ ▶️ John you know like I said that people get hacked all the time. It’s a thing that happens,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, like it’s essentially unavoidable. If someone wants to target you and wants
⏹️ ▶️ John to get in, they probably will get in. Like I think history has shown that there is no such thing as an invulnerable,
⏹️ ▶️ John completely secure anything that is on any kind of network, right? Which
⏹️ ▶️ John is why real security, you know, requests as they say air gap, although there’s all sorts of crazy academic
⏹️ ▶️ John papers that will show you that even an air gap isn’t sufficient to protect you. But anyway, the whole point is
⏹️ ▶️ John stuff happens, as they say. But in that kind of environment,
⏹️ ▶️ John of course you wanna have auto updates on because that is your best defense against exploits
⏹️ ▶️ John because exploits are discovered and then they are patched. Then their new ones are discovered and then those are patched then other new ones are discovered and they’re
⏹️ ▶️ John patched. And if you opt out of that patching cycle or do it at a much less frequent
⏹️ ▶️ John time interval, like a month or a year, instead of as soon as the patch is available, you are vulnerable
⏹️ ▶️ John for longer. But then we run into the ubiquity problem, which is not so much that, oh, maybe
⏹️ ▶️ John the signing certificates got stolen and someone can put an update as them, it’s that we don’t know.
⏹️ ▶️ John Because ubiquity, according to the story, has not been upfront about it. What you want is
⏹️ ▶️ John truthful communication from the company to tell you, if
⏹️ ▶️ John they had told you, hey, our stuff was stolen and people can sign things as us, everybody turn off your auto updates
⏹️ ▶️ John now. And then the company would later tell you, okay, we’ve issued new certificates Redone everything
⏹️ ▶️ John now apply this patch manually and re-enable That’s what you’re looking for like the trust
⏹️ ▶️ John in the company is the is the thing that is damaged here Not so much again assuming it’s
⏹️ ▶️ John true Not so much the breach itself because if you have trust in the company You would know which
⏹️ ▶️ John actions to take because you would just ask the company. Hey, what should I do? Should I have auto it’s on or not? But now Marco’s in
⏹️ ▶️ John a situation of like well I don’t know whether I should have them on or not because I don’t even know if this is the thing that happened or or not,
⏹️ ▶️ John because if the story is true, then ubiquity is withholding information. That’s making me not trust them. But
⏹️ ▶️ John if I don’t trust them, should I turn on auto-updates or should I not turn them on? I don’t know what to do. And that like, you
⏹️ ▶️ John know, it’s probably some business one-on-one lesson or whatever. Like, again, stuff is going to happen in your business that’s
⏹️ ▶️ John bad. It’s how you handle it that, you know, within reason, obviously if you’re running
⏹️ ▶️ John a store and it burns to the ground and you have no insurance, how you handle it isn’t that important. But in situations
⏹️ ▶️ John like this, How you handle it is a big factor in how your company comes out of this. So
⏹️ ▶️ John I really hope either parts of this story are true or Ubiquiti at least comes clean at this point.
⏹️ ▶️ John So its customers know what they should do going forward, including knowing whether they should just buy
⏹️ ▶️ John new networking equipment.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Oh, and to answer everyone’s questions about like, what do I recommend now that Ubiquiti has a
⏹️ ▶️ Marco problem? The answer is, I don’t know. I haven’t, you know, we
⏹️ ▶️ Marco have things like, you know, previous sponsor, Eero. I’ve used those before, like in vacation situations,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco stuff like that, and they’ve been fine. But this kind of world, like almost
⏹️ ▶️ Marco everything has downsides somewhere in the chain or like parties
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that you have to trust if you’re gonna use it. You can go the kind of home brewed route and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco set up like, you know, like one of those, like PF Sense things, but those sometimes have problems too. Like did,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think they just had a problem recently. So like there’s all sorts of gotchas with a lot of this stuff. And
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think, again, a reasonable way to approach it is probably
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to keep things pretty simple. And if you wanna be conservative about
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the security and stuff on your network, don’t do things that have remote
⏹️ ▶️ Marco access. Don’t do things that are based on web services. Have things that are
⏹️ ▶️ Marco more local and local only, where you are taking a more active role in their management,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco or there isn’t much to manage because they’re so simple and local. I think that’s
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the general way to go. And that’s probably where I’m gonna be heading with my stuff as well.
John’s network switches
⏹️ ▶️ John So, interestingly and totally unrelated to this ubiquity thing, I have been
⏹️ ▶️ John doing some thinking and purchasing related to my home network because
⏹️ ▶️ John in this year, I’m not going to say this year of working from home because honestly I was working from home a lot even before the COVID
⏹️ ▶️ John stuff, but in this last year I’ve had much more occasion to
⏹️ ▶️ John be on, you know, Teams, basically Microsoft Teams, teleconference meetings
⏹️ ▶️ John all day long, right? And every once in a while,
⏹️ ▶️ John it always seemed to be during like an important teams meeting, right? With
⏹️ ▶️ John where I’m either I’m giving an important presentation or I’m talking with my bosses or whatever. Uh, I would
⏹️ ▶️ John lose internet briefly and then it would come back and it happened like
⏹️ ▶️ John it happened one particularly memorable time. And I was like, if this happens again, I’m, I’m fixing everything.
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco And of course it
⏹️ ▶️ John didn’t happen again for months. I’m like, oh, well, whatever that was, you don’t have to worry about it. But then and it happened again and I’m like,
⏹️ ▶️ John okay, this might, maybe this happens all the time and I just only notice when I’m in the middle
⏹️ ▶️ John of an important meeting, like, cause it, you know, it just goes out briefly but then comes back, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John And what it looks like from my networking perspective is it looked the same as back in the bad old days when my ISP
⏹️ ▶️ John would like, you know, go down for a second or lose an IP address, but it also might
⏹️ ▶️ John look similar to a router rebooting itself because it crashed. I have no way to tell because one of the routers I’m using,
⏹️ ▶️ John I can’t figure out how to get the logs from it unless I do like SNMP or whatever and I don’t wanna deal with that. But the whole point
⏹️ ▶️ John is, is one of these problems that’s, it’s like testing my resolve by saying,
⏹️ ▶️ John I’m only gonna happen, I’m gonna happen in an infuriating time, but then it won’t happen again for months, but then it’ll happen again,
⏹️ ▶️ John but then it won’t happen again for months. But now it happened again today and I’m like, you know what, this
⏹️ ▶️ John is not just whatever it’s called, like a selection effect, not selection effect, what is it when someone mentions something
⏹️ ▶️ John and then you start seeing it everywhere?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Oh yes, yes, yes, I can’t think of it then.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Merlin is yelling it right now.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, exactly. Whatever that phenomenon is. I’m like, it’s not just that. Because yes, there was one
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey particularly very,
⏹️ ▶️ John Bader-Meinhof. Oh, there it is. There it is. Anyway. It was one
⏹️ ▶️ John particular really bad time it happened, but then like nothing for a while. But now, normally what I should do is start logging
⏹️ ▶️ John it. Let me just write down what happens to prove to myself that it’s not just my, but I’m past that. It happened today. I’m like,
⏹️ ▶️ John all right, you’re over your limit for the year, which is like three or four. And so I want
⏹️ ▶️ John to redo some things in particular. I think I’m going to finally retire the Apple Airport Express
⏹️ ▶️ John that Marco gave me that I’ve been using for ages. And just start, basically what
⏹️ ▶️ John I’m going to start doing is eliminating components to narrow it down. Because if it’s that Apple thing, which is the oldest component in my
⏹️ ▶️ John thing, and honestly the thing I have the least faith in, let me just remove that from the network. Because I don’t need it technically.
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s redundant with the rest of my network. And then I’ll just start going component by component and
⏹️ ▶️ John taking things out of the loop. And now the problem is I have to take one of these variables
⏹️ ▶️ John and they have to wait a few months. And then, you know, if it happens again, they gotta take another one out and wait a few months.
⏹️ ▶️ John Like the iteration cycle is gonna be low. But anyway, all this to say is I’m taking that thing out and
⏹️ ▶️ John when I take that out, it turns out that I will actually need a few more ethernet ports because the Apple
⏹️ ▶️ John Airport Express doesn’t just have like a WAN port and a LAN port. It has like four ports on the back of
⏹️ ▶️ John it. And I’m using every single one of them for a device that I care about. So I can’t just
⏹️ ▶️ John remove that from the network because
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey then I gotta budget. Well,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey slow down, slow down. Before we get a bunch of email, Airport Extreme, not an Airport Express, right? Express, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John Yes, sorry, not an Airport Express. I forget the name. Airport Extreme, it’s the one that’s vertical that some of them have a hard drive
⏹️ ▶️ John in, but this one doesn’t. Yes, Airport Extreme, sorry. I forgot how extreme it was in the 90s.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, Airport Express was the thing that did like airplay
⏹️ ▶️ John transmission. All right, if I take that out of the network, I just have a bunch of loose ethernet
⏹️ ▶️ John cables that have no place to plug. So everyone knows what you need here. You just need
⏹️ ▶️ John an unmanaged, as in not exploitable through ubiquity hacks, an unmanaged
⏹️ ▶️ John switch. That’s the simplest device you could possibly imagine. There’s nothing to configure.
⏹️ ▶️ John There’s no software. It is an unmanaged switch, ethernet switch, a gigabit ethernet switch. It has a bunch of ports
⏹️ ▶️ John in the back and a place where you give it power and you just plug in your ethernet cables. And it doesn’t matter where you plug them
⏹️ ▶️ John in for the most part, because they’re all auto switching and auto magical. And it just, essentially it’s like a USB hub.
⏹️ ▶️ John That used to be back in the day when we had those. where you have one ethernet port and
⏹️ ▶️ John you need more than one ethernet port. And it is the simplest and
⏹️ ▶️ John most straightforward and least complicated way you can get more ethernet ports. And yes, there are caveats compared to
⏹️ ▶️ John a managed port and you can get fancier and fancier, but I literally just need one or two or three extra new ports here, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John So I simply needed to get an unmanaged gigabit ethernet switch. I’ve purchased
⏹️ ▶️ John many, many unmanaged gigabit ethernet switches in my life. many 10-100 unmanaged
⏹️ ▶️ John ethernet switches in my life, right? Hell, I’ve purchased ethernet hubs. I’ve done it all, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John It seems like such an easy thing to buy, but kind of like toasters, not that I wanna go on that rant again,
⏹️ ▶️ John like toaster ovens, it’s becoming, and I guess USB hubs for that matter, it’s becoming
⏹️ ▶️ John really, really hard to find an unmanaged
⏹️ ▶️ John ethernet switch that doesn’t have thousands of angry people on the internet
⏹️ ▶️ John telling you how it’s a complete piece of garbage and doesn’t work.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I’m looking at one right now and it’s fine.
⏹️ ▶️ John Every, I know, I have a bunch of my house. I have like, there’s like four in my house, right? They’re all different, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John What I wish is that I could take one of the four that I have in my house and buy another one just like it. But
⏹️ ▶️ John of course all the ones in my house were purchased years and years ago because Ethernet doesn’t change that much and they’re all totally discontinued, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John And so name the brand, D-Link, Linksys, TP-Link, Netgear, like
⏹️ ▶️ John Cisco, like just whatever brand you think, go find a consumer
⏹️ ▶️ John priced unmanaged ethernet switch from them and then find
⏹️ ▶️ John how many hateful reviews of people saying, this doesn’t work, nothing worked on my network until I took it
⏹️ ▶️ John off. It worked for six months and then died. I hate company X, you should try company
⏹️ ▶️ John Y. And then you go to company Y and it’s just a giant circle and you would just go around and around and around in circles.
⏹️ ▶️ John Because, and in the end, probably the actual contents of all of these devices are
⏹️ ▶️ John made by one or two companies and they’re all just packaging in a different plastic container. And then
⏹️ ▶️ John you say, okay, well, why don’t you just go for the business ones? The problem with the business,
⏹️ ▶️ John unmanaged ethernet switches is they are made for a business context. And in one particular
⏹️ ▶️ John way, this is gonna sound stupid, but this is, I just want it the way I want it,
⏹️ ▶️ John as they say. The thing in a business context seemed to be to have
⏹️ ▶️ John the power on the opposite side of all the ethernet cables. And the way I have everything arranged and
⏹️ ▶️ John the way this thing is gonna be, that’s no good for me. I want all the ethernet ports
⏹️ ▶️ John and the power all on the same side so that all those cables can run off the side or the back of my desk.
⏹️ ▶️ John That used to be how almost every consumer ethernet switch was made. Somehow
⏹️ ▶️ John in the past 10 years, someone decided, you know what, businesses, I understand the business one, The business ones, they’re in like a rack
⏹️ ▶️ John and you can see the ports and in the back is the power. Like I understand that for the business ones, but that’s not my context.
⏹️ ▶️ John And honestly, business ones usually have more ports than eight or four or whatever I need for my thing. But then
⏹️ ▶️ John for the consumer ones, someone decided that the power should come in the side for a lot of brands. The side?
⏹️ ▶️ John The side. I don’t understand. I mean, they’re just cheap plastic consumery things, but someone decided,
⏹️ ▶️ John and not only does it come in the side, but it doesn’t come in with like a right angle, you know, like a little DC right angle connector.
⏹️ ▶️ John No, it comes straight out of the side. You got your ethernet cables coming out one side. I’m
⏹️ ▶️ John just surprised there aren’t brands that don’t have ethernet ports in like a circle around them,
⏹️ ▶️ John spider. Because that’s about how much, how much. An ethernet squid. Exactly, that’s like how
⏹️ ▶️ John much. No, a squid would be better. How much acknowledgement these companies have of how people actually use it. Like you’re making
⏹️ ▶️ John a consumer thing, you’re making it pretty. Don’t you think people have desks? Don’t you think they want the cables running off
⏹️ ▶️ John their desk and not like one cable running towards them and the rest running away? So,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, of the ones that have all the ports and the power in the back, and there are a bunch of models you can find, every one of the reviews
⏹️ ▶️ John says they’re all pieces of garbage. Like every brand just, no, obviously, again,
⏹️ ▶️ John reviews, like 99.9%, they’re great, right? But these things have like thousands of reviews on many
⏹️ ▶️ John different sites. And so there’s hundreds of people saying, you should never buy Netgear, you should only buy
⏹️ ▶️ John Linksys. And then you go to Linksys, and you should never buy Linksys, you should always buy TP-Link. Oh, don’t buy TP-Link,
⏹️ ▶️ John they’re the cheapest ones and they’re garbage, You should buy Netgear. And
⏹️ ▶️ John it goes around and around. All I’m looking for is just a straightforward,
⏹️ ▶️ John like I’m willing to pay more because these things cost like 20 bucks, right? I’ll pay 40 bucks. I’ll pay $50. Big
⏹️ ▶️ John spenders. Just find me the one that’s like, everyone agrees is 100%
⏹️ ▶️ John reliable and has ethernet ports and the power. And that just doesn’t exist. Even in the chat room, people are saying, everyone
⏹️ ▶️ John knows TP-Link is good. They’re well regarded by almost everyone. Almost, but not quite.
⏹️ ▶️ John Not quite everybody, in fact, they have the exact same number of people telling you they’re pieces of garbage as every other brand.
⏹️ ▶️ John So I made a random choice, I picked one, I ordered it, it’s on its way,
⏹️ ▶️ John and then I went to Monoprice and bought some ethernet cables for two bucks and felt better about myself. Using my
⏹️ ▶️ John newfound knowledge of ethernet cables from our vast
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco research on this
⏹️ ▶️ John across weeks and weeks of shows, learned more about, you know, I didn’t have to say like, what’s the difference
⏹️ ▶️ John between Cat6 and Cat6a again? I already knew that was nice and they were cheap.
⏹️ ▶️ John So I’m going to excise the Airport Extreme from my network.
⏹️ ▶️ John But the reason I put this in here, I’m thinking about Marco with his setup, was there’s
⏹️ ▶️ John never a good time, especially in these COVID times, for me to
⏹️ ▶️ John knock everyone in the house off the internet, which is what I would have to do to remove this essential component,
⏹️ ▶️ John because the Apple Airport Extreme is in fact the thing that pulls an IP address from my Fios RNT,
⏹️ ▶️ John right? My Fios thing has an ethernet cable coming out of it. It goes into the Apple thing. The Apple thing gets my like public
⏹️ ▶️ John IP address that I get through Fios and distributes IP addresses to everything else. Then I have a eero for all my wifi, but
⏹️ ▶️ John that is the lynchpin. So when I unplug that, everything in this house goes offline. And I was thinking
⏹️ ▶️ John about telling my family, hey, I need to do an upgrade, whatever, blah, blah, blah. But you know how these things go. Sometimes it
⏹️ ▶️ John doesn’t go as quick as you want. I can’t do that in the middle of the day. The kids have remote school and people are
⏹️ ▶️ John watching stream and video at night. So I feel like I’m back at work again. I have to wait till like
⏹️ ▶️ John off hours, like 2 a.m. when everyone’s asleep, I gotta sneak down and redo the network in the house so that when everyone wakes up,
⏹️ ▶️ John allowing for the hour and a half of when something’s gonna be screwed up or the files thing is gonna refuse to give a
⏹️ ▶️ John new IP to my router or whatever. I have to allow for that and have it built in. Plus the possibility
⏹️ ▶️ John that I’m gonna be up all night and by the time they wake up I need to go to school, I haven’t fixed the network and now it’s just permanently broken.
⏹️ ▶️ John So there’s always that possibility. So it’s feeling more and more fraught of how to essentially
⏹️ ▶️ John change or update your home network in a way that doesn’t cause the disruptions. And I thought this would be a
⏹️ ▶️ John good opportunity to ask Marco how he has handled this in his household, which granted in
⏹️ ▶️ John pre-COVID times when you did your various network redesigns, probably wasn’t as fraught, but what are your
⏹️ ▶️ John plans now? Like say, oh, I’m gonna get rid of my Ubiquiti and replace it with something else. How do you plan to do
⏹️ ▶️ John that? Or is it just like you just wait for Adam to go to school and just tell Tiff tough luck and then
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I basically wait until no one’s using it. And I actually do have a
⏹️ ▶️ Marco few chances a week where that happens like in the middle of the day. And so I can do that. But getting back
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a minute to your switch issue. I found it amusing, I looked up
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the switch that runs most of my house here is, well was until very recently
⏹️ ▶️ Marco when I upgraded, quote, upgraded to Ubiquiti stuff. an HP 18
⏹️ ▶️ Marco or 24 port HP rack mount switch. And this is something I bought in 2012 for $274
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and has been bulletproof. Totally rock solid
⏹️ ▶️ Marco until I took it offline and upgraded to the Ubiquiti stuff like last year sometime.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So it worked for like probably nine years or eight years at least and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco was totally rock solid, never had a problem. And at some point I needed an eight port
⏹️ ▶️ Marco switch in one of my TV stations. And I just got the HP
⏹️ ▶️ Marco ProCurve, it’s the HP ProCurve 1810G line. And I just got the eight port
⏹️ ▶️ Marco version of that, which is smaller and got that. And that was also
⏹️ ▶️ Marco totally reliable, bulletproof the entire time. So I can suggest if you’re
⏹️ ▶️ Marco willing to go with things that are a little bit larger and might have the power port on the opposite side as the network ports.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And a fan potentially.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I don’t think these have fans, I’ll double check.
⏹️ ▶️ John Well, I can stop you, don’t suggest any rack mount stuff. Like obviously I know, if I wanted to just buy
⏹️ ▶️ John like business equipment, yeah, it would be fine, right? But these are, for better or for worse, this
⏹️ ▶️ John networking stuff is happening like on a desk, up where people are. So rack mount
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the A-port version, yeah, the A-port version is not a rack mount, or at least it’s one of those like half wide things.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, I mean, but that’s why I start to get into fashion. Like for example, the-
⏹️ ▶️ Marco The fashion of network switches?
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, so the one I have on my Synology… John,
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco you’re going
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to have like five network cables coming out of it. Where’s the fashion? There isn’t like… I don’t want an ugly box.
⏹️ ▶️ John don’t want an ugly box sitting on my desk. That’s what it comes down to.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco shouldn’t be on your desk. It’s covered in wires. If you’re concerned about the appearance of
⏹️ ▶️ Marco something that’s inherently going to be covered in wires… Yeah,
⏹️ ▶️ John you can’t even see the wires. They all disappear behind the desk.
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco Oh my God. Yeah, so anyway, the
⏹️ ▶️ John one I have attached to my Synology is sort of the spiritual successor of the good
⏹️ ▶️ John one that I like. The good one that I like is the one that my Mac Pro is connected to. It’s an eight port switch.
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco I think I bought it
⏹️ ▶️ John in like 2002 or something. I don’t even know how old it is, right? But it looks nice. It looks
⏹️ ▶️ John like a rectangle. It’s black. It has lights on the front with colors that mean something,
⏹️ ▶️ John right? And it has power that comes out the back, right? You can’t buy that anymore, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John The company that makes it makes a new model that’s ugly. I bought one of those ugly ones and that’s what my Synologies
⏹️ ▶️ John are on. but I don’t care, it’s in the basement, I don’t see it. But I need something up here that is tasteful
⏹️ ▶️ John and discreet and not ugly and, you know, reasonable
⏹️ ▶️ John quality and has the ports on the back and the plug in the back. If you think about the AirPort Extreme, that qualifies.
⏹️ ▶️ John It is tasteful. Yes, it has cables all plugged into the back of it, but they’re all in the back, you can’t see them because
⏹️ ▶️ John you can’t walk around the back of this desk, it’s against the wall. It fulfills the goal. It is a
⏹️ ▶️ John reasonable looking, nice thing that has been reliable as far
⏹️ ▶️ John as we know, but that I’m deciding to take out of the networking equation just because it’s the oldest thing. You know, and again, I’m not
⏹️ ▶️ John necessarily blaming this particular device, but it’s the first variable that I’m going to eliminate
⏹️ ▶️ John and I’m going to replace it with something else. So the one I got is a black rectangular box with all the ports in the back of it.
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s from a brand I have not tried before, so wish me luck, but you know, it’s a $20 purchase, so
⏹️ ▶️ John if it’s garbage, I’ll just try another brand. It’s not the end of the world. And in fact, I think I have a spare one of the
⏹️ ▶️ John ugly ones up in the attic because I got a lot of, I always have, this is a good thing to go. When you’re buying something like this,
⏹️ ▶️ John like networking switches or whatever, especially if your house is set up like mine where
⏹️ ▶️ John you essentially use all the ports. Like there’s no networking switch in my house that has
⏹️ ▶️ John an abundance of free ports. I’m tempted to say that there are zero free ports, but I think I have one in this
⏹️ ▶️ John room as my sort of go-to spare port, right? But anyway, if
⏹️ ▶️ John something goes wrong and you’re wired networking and you’d like a box dies because you’ve been using
⏹️ ▶️ John it for 15 years and you don’t have a replacement, it can be frustrating when things go
⏹️ ▶️ John offline and kids can’t get wifi anymore because you had some, you know, the wire that goes to the satellite thing
⏹️ ▶️ John doesn’t work and you’re like, well, sorry, I’m all out of ports, right? It’s a good idea to have spares. And so I do have a
⏹️ ▶️ John couple of spare switches, but they’re ugly. So I’m hoping the one I bought that is less
⏹️ ▶️ John ugly works well, but if it doesn’t and it’s an emergency, I can swap in one of the Ego boxes.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Do you want to be really frustrated? I actually have this problem very well solved in my house
⏹️ ▶️ Marco because you know who makes a really nice little switch?
⏹️ ▶️ John Ubiquity. Ubiquity.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco managed. Exactly and you need to be running their management software
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to activate the switch. But they make this one called the USW Flex Mini.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s a managed five port switch that’s very, very small. They sell it in like, I think I bought a
⏹️ ▶️ Marco four pack for a hundred bucks.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, they do sell them in multi packs. I noticed that too. I’m like, why is this so expensive? Oh, it comes with four of them.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, and it can be powered either via USB-C, Oh
⏹️ ▶️ Marco my gosh. which is on the wrong side of it, or it can be powered by a power over
⏹️ ▶️ Marco ethernet feed in. That’s also the uplink. So, and one of the coolest things I ever did
⏹️ ▶️ Marco for my network was I upgraded my main switch to be a power over ethernet switch on all of its ports.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And that way I can plug any PoE thing into any ethernet port around my house, and it gets powered.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And what’s great about this is that, if I need a switch somewhere, I can plug this
⏹️ ▶️ Marco in to the wall jack, it gets powered, and then I don’t have to separately
⏹️ ▶️ Marco run a power cable to it, and I can plug whatever I want into its other ports. And so it is a very, very nice
⏹️ ▶️ Marco system. Unfortunately, it requires you to have like a PoE infrastructure, or USB-C
⏹️ ▶️ Marco power, but on the wrong side, or either way, it still requires you to have a Ubiquiti
⏹️ ▶️ Marco management system setup. But it is a really nice looking, very small
⏹️ ▶️ John switch. No, it is. I looked at it, in my tour of every networking vendor on the planet, I looked
⏹️ ▶️ John at it. I was looking at vendors that sell, essentially, this product, an ethernet lowering switch,
⏹️ ▶️ John for use in factories, like to build things. Oh my gosh. Right? Because there are
⏹️ ▶️ John vendors that specialize in like, so on the factory floor of your metal machining
⏹️ ▶️ John shop or whatever, you might need ethernet for your CNC machines or whatever. and the things they sell, they’re hilarious.
⏹️ ▶️ John Like they have their own fashion. They look like Milwaukee Power Tools or whatever. They have that kind of macho,
⏹️ ▶️ John I belong in a factory vibe, which is not the look I’m looking for. And they’re also like seven times more expensive
⏹️ ▶️ John than even this Ubiquiti thing. So you want a four port factory router? That’s $300, please.
⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t know what’s factory about them other than the fact that they seem to have metal cases and ridiculous flanges and stuff.
⏹️ ▶️ John But yeah, no, I did look at Ubiquiti. I looked at a lot of the other managed stuff I don’t want and can’t support
⏹️ ▶️ John any managed stuff. Some of the more expensive consumer ones are all about like, hey, this one has all power ethernet ports,
⏹️ ▶️ John but that doesn’t help me because I’m pretty sure, I don’t
⏹️ ▶️ John know if the Cat6 cable that’s going from my Fios thing supports power ethernet. Do
⏹️ ▶️ John all cables support it? This is another thing in my research. Like I don’t have any power ethernet infrastructure, as you were
⏹️ ▶️ John saying. Like there’s zero power ethernet things in my house and applying it
⏹️ ▶️ John after the fact, and this is what people are gonna tell me and they’re probably kind of right. you should just get a server rack
⏹️ ▶️ John and put it in your base mix to all your Synology stuff. Yes. That probably will happen someday
⏹️ ▶️ John eventually. Unfortunately, the other part of my home networking, as we talked about before, like the part where
⏹️ ▶️ John you have to get wires to go from point A to point B in your house, that is the most
⏹️ ▶️ John sneaky, janky, ridiculous, so you didn’t really wanna do this the right way situation, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John I ran all these wires myself. I am not an electrician, and I did it by essentially
⏹️ ▶️ John being sneaky. Like I didn’t do anything the right way. No, it’s all about
⏹️ ▶️ John like, where can I hide a wire where no one will notice it? And I go from the far corner of
⏹️ ▶️ John my house to the other far corner. And it’s this ridiculous, if you saw the network topology, it’s like,
⏹️ ▶️ John oh God, I wish I could find this. It’s probably in YouTube somewhere. You ever seen the thing explaining why a particular
⏹️ ▶️ John nerve in the human body, like it’s start, I figured where it starts. Like starts in one
⏹️ ▶️ John place, then goes down half your body. that makes a U-turn and comes back up half your body and connects to something that’s
⏹️ ▶️ John like an inch from where it started. And it’s like, the most, it’s like, why would, if you need,
⏹️ ▶️ John if this part of your, if this brain, you know, you go from brain to this nerve to the thing, it’s like two inches away.
⏹️ ▶️ John Why are you going down to my stomach and back up again? And there’s a really good explanation of like, well,
⏹️ ▶️ John this is you with your stupid nerve, right? Rewind, evolutionarily speaking, and look, here
⏹️ ▶️ John is a fish, and here’s how the fish biology is set up. And here how the transitional,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, the various species that are between fish and us, and you watch as that nerve gets longer and longer
⏹️ ▶️ John and slowly bends into a crazy U shape until we get to primates, and now you say, oh, I see,
⏹️ ▶️ John it just kinda ended up that way. That’s my home network. My home network has cable runs that go
⏹️ ▶️ John from the source, they go all the other side of the house, then all the way back, then back again in this direction.
⏹️ ▶️ John You would never make a network this way. But it’s entirely designed, or like where and how I
⏹️ ▶️ John can hide the wires without actually running them through any of my walls, which are all
⏹️ ▶️ John made of like horsehair plaster and lath and everything. I don’t wanna touch it. Right.
⏹️ ▶️ John So I’m slightly constrained on the networking. In general though, I have everything that I need. It’s just
⏹️ ▶️ John that, you know, if I want to replace a thing that has four ethernet ports on it, I need something
⏹️ ▶️ John else that has at least four ethernet ports on it. If I wanna replace everything, I have to rerun all new wires and
⏹️ ▶️ John sort of home run them down to my big non-existent, you know, networking rack in the basement.
⏹️ ▶️ John That maybe is a project for another decade, but for now, I just wanna find the culprit. Oh, and by the
⏹️ ▶️ John way, on the culprit of what the networking thing is, I really do think, anecdotally speaking, as far as
⏹️ ▶️ John my networking can tell, it mostly happens when I’m in meetings with the Teams app. I’m
⏹️ ▶️ John like, how could that be? What is it about using Teams? It’s not particularly network constrained.
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s not like we’re sharing video. Half the time, everyone has their video turned off and we’re all staring at one document,
⏹️ ▶️ John and I do huge downloads and uploads all the time, putting gigs of photos
⏹️ ▶️ John and everything else on my backblaze stuff going up for multiple computers. Like what is it about and being
⏹️ ▶️ John in a team’s meeting that causes this problem to happen? I don’t have an answer. I don’t know
⏹️ ▶️ John why I’m blaming the Apple thing just because it’s old, but it’s the first thing I’m trying. So we’ll check back in in
⏹️ ▶️ John three months or maybe I’ll check back in the next episode and I’ll tell you how nice my black box looks on the desk.
⏹️ ▶️ John And then after that three months, I’ll tell you if I’ve actually solved my problem.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I just love that you’ve been stressing about how many nines you’ve implicitly provided
⏹️ ▶️ Casey your family. I don’t think you knew it, but you’re apparently in four to five nine territory.
⏹️ ▶️ John No, actually, the thing is, they’re not around, or at least they don’t, no one has
⏹️ ▶️ John ever come to me and said, hey, is the network out? Because it goes down for a second, but if you’re in the middle of giving a presentation,
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s a problem, right? So as far as they’re concerned, it’s 100% uptime, and I figure
⏹️ ▶️ John I want to maintain it, mostly because if I was to just right now kill the network connection, every person in my
⏹️ ▶️ John house would come be knocking at this door and saying what’s going on. Because there are, I guarantee you, they’re all on the internet right now
⏹️ ▶️ John in some form, right?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Oh John, I’m sorry.
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#askatp: Non-admin accounts
⏹️ ▶️ Casey right, Michael writes, a long time ago I read that it was best to have an admin account in your user account and your user account shouldn’t
⏹️ ▶️ Casey be an admin for security purposes. Is that still best practice? Some commands slash installs require sudo,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey which my user doesn’t have. This is a great question. I think I might have done this once in the Windows era
⏹️ ▶️ Casey like 49 years ago. I never have really done this regularly.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey So John, what’s the right practice here?
⏹️ ▶️ John This is another question we get occasionally, and I think we’re up as like the two or three year rotation where we need
⏹️ ▶️ John to answer it again. The trade-off is exactly how people think. There
⏹️ ▶️ John is no secret thing you’re probably not thinking of, right? It is safer not to have an admin
⏹️ ▶️ John account because then you can actually do something to hold yourself, but it’s also annoying because sometimes you want to
⏹️ ▶️ John do something as admin, and if your account doesn’t have it, then you have to have to switch one that does, which you can do, but it’s a hassle.
⏹️ ▶️ John So it’s that old security versus convenience trade-off. What I would say is if you’re listening
⏹️ ▶️ John to this podcast and more or less trust yourself to not do something phenomenally stupid with your computer,
⏹️ ▶️ John having an admin account is so much more convenient that I think it is worth the
⏹️ ▶️ John slightly higher chance that you will hose yourself and or be exploited by some program that takes advantage of the fact that you can
⏹️ ▶️ John elevate privileges. That said, if you want to make the opposite choice, that’s fine too. It’s not that fraught.
⏹️ ▶️ John Like just decide what your risk, you know, your risk tolerances. I personally make
⏹️ ▶️ John my accounts admin accounts. I made all my children’s accounts non-admin accounts and I even went back on that because
⏹️ ▶️ John it was too annoying when I was on their account trying to fix something that I couldn’t essentially do admin stuff, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John Sometimes when you’re prompted for admin stuff you can enter an admin username and password. So if I was on their account
⏹️ ▶️ John and I needed to give some app access to the microphone or whatever, I could enter my username and password
⏹️ ▶️ John but then I couldn’t use Touch ID because their laptops had Touch ID with their finger in it. Anyway, I have now gone to,
⏹️ ▶️ John the entire family has admin accounts just because I am annoyed by the hassle of not being able to elevate
⏹️ ▶️ John to admin privileges with the current user’s password in every situation. Your mileage may vary.
⏹️ ▶️ John It is, in fact, safer not to do that, but not to a degree that I would have a problem with recommending
⏹️ ▶️ John that people just make admin accounts. Just be careful out there.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I disagree a little bit. I err on the side of just make everybody admin, because,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco first of all, it depends on where the risk is coming from as to whether this makes any difference at all.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Sandboxed apps, for instance, on the Mac, you don’t need to separate these privileges out because
⏹️ ▶️ Marco they are already restricted in what they can access and things like that. And so sandbox apps are already kind
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of implicitly locked down for the most part. Un-sandboxed
⏹️ ▶️ Marco apps, if you’re not an admin, still have access to all of your files.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And that’s pretty important. Like they have so much access to things that matter to you
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that whether or not they can modify like system files or the files of other users on the system,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco might not matter if they still have access to all of your documents, all of your files. So
⏹️ ▶️ Marco from that point of view, I think you’re thinking there’s more security in making that a registered
⏹️ ▶️ Marco account than what there actually might be.
⏹️ ▶️ John I mean, the context of my household is that every person has an account on every single computer. So even
⏹️ ▶️ John though it seems silly, like, well, it’s got all access to your stuff, well, it doesn’t have access, for example, to my wife’s stuff if
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s not an admin account. So I can hose
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s more relevant for kids. If a kid didn’t have an admin account, they could erase all their crap, but they couldn’t erase
⏹️ ▶️ John my crap, or my wife’s crap, or whatever, right? But in the end, you know, like,
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s, like, how much, how much are you trusting your kids to
⏹️ ▶️ John operate the computer in a safe way? Like, it’s a trade-off.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, but also, if you run non-admin accounts, lots of weird stuff breaks.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco That being said, I mean, I’ve had many problems with multi-user support
⏹️ ▶️ Marco in Big Sur and recent releases. Every time we have
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to log out of my user account and like Tiff logs in to record a podcast or something,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco after that, the computer is basically broken until I reboot it. Like mail search doesn’t work,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco touch ID doesn’t work, watch unlock doesn’t work, any kind of spotlight, anything based on the spotlight index
⏹️ ▶️ Marco doesn’t work. It’s frankly baffling to me that Big Sur has gotten as far as it has in the release cycle
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and multi-user support is still completely broken in this way?
⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t think it’s broken for everyone though, because I’m running Big Sur on all our computers and we perpetually
⏹️ ▶️ John have multiple people logged into them, switching accounts all day long and don’t experience any of this. Now, to be fair, we don’t use
⏹️ ▶️ John Apple Mail at all, period, across the entire family. There you go. But we do use things like Spotlight
⏹️ ▶️ John and like nothing else seems broken, because if it did, nothing in our house would function, that would have downgraded everybody, right? So Mail
⏹️ ▶️ John may absolutely be broken, but I mean, I’m not saying it’s not happening to you, but whatever it is causing
⏹️ ▶️ John it must be something that we either we don’t have or that we aren’t doing.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, mail search breaks, watch unlock breaks, and lots of things based on Spotlight break. It seems, and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco if you are on Big Sur and you switch users, switch back, it will be broken
⏹️ ▶️ Marco until you reboot. And that’s been persistent through
⏹️ ▶️ John every software update. But not Spotlight, because Spotlight still does work for us. We don’t use watch unlock and we don’t use
⏹️ ▶️ John Apple Mail. So I do wonder what
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco is the deal. Well, you can’t.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco You couldn’t use them if you wanted to because they would break in your
⏹️ ▶️ John setup. Although actually, wait a second, I do use Apple Mail to download my Gmail, it’s just periodically,
⏹️ ▶️ John but I never do searches for it. Right,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco anyway, so multi-user mode is buggy, and there’s lots of weird stuff that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco breaks. So anyway, going back to the question, like if you wanna have like separate accounts for admin versus non-admin,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you have to give up a lot of convenience and a lot of things working correctly all the time. And what
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you get from that is this theoretical security benefit I think in practice,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you’re not really benefiting from most cases. If it’s a single user computer, you’re not really benefiting much at
⏹️ ▶️ Marco all. And then secondly, you think about the practice of what happens when you have one of these,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know, non admin accounts, you get asked a lot to authorize with admin privileges,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco or you have to run a lot of things as sudo or enter the root password or whatever. If you’re doing this on a regular
⏹️ ▶️ Marco basis, anyway, you are regularly poking holes in that shield out of necessity or convenience,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it kind of reduces the security that you’re actually getting in practice. Because if you’re constantly authorizing
⏹️ ▶️ Marco things to run with root privileges here and there as needed, are you really being that secure
⏹️ ▶️ Marco by having this account be in this mode in the first place? Like I feel like the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the real world security benefit of that in most setups is not
⏹️ ▶️ Marco high, whereas the inconvenience and potential bug
⏹️ ▶️ Marco exposure and annoyance is high. So I don’t think it’s worth it for most people to do that.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, I tend to agree.
#askatp: 400 videos into one
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Duncan Wilcock writes, I have about 400 video clips of my son and I want to join them
⏹️ ▶️ Casey into one three hour movie. I want 4K and 60 frames per second, original Kodak. Recommend a
⏹️ ▶️ Casey good tool, please. Hi, have you never heard of FFmpeg? How long have you been listening
⏹️ ▶️ Casey to the show that you’ve never heard of FFmpeg? I mean, come on, man. That’s probably not the
⏹️ ▶️ Casey best solution to this problem, but it is a solution. Also it gets a little dodgy
⏹️ ▶️ Casey if, I’m not entirely sure what Duncan is saying. I want 4K and 60 frames per second original
⏹️ ▶️ Casey codec. I’m assuming that these are 400 video clips coming from various
⏹️ ▶️ Casey different pieces of hardware across presumably years where not
⏹️ ▶️ Casey everything started in 4K. And this is all stuff that can be handled by FFmpeg, but it does get dodgy kind of
⏹️ ▶️ Casey quickly. Duncan writes that apparently a Photos app slideshow is 1080p max
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and iMovie doesn’t preserve date order if exported with edits. I mean,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey this is not gonna be easy with anything I know how to do. You can do it with FFmpeg, but it would be
⏹️ ▶️ Casey semi-manual. Do one of you have a better answer or do we have to tell Duncan to, you
⏹️ ▶️ Casey know, ask me to help them out?
⏹️ ▶️ John This question was totally for you just so you can say FFmpeg again.
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey Okay. Because
⏹️ ▶️ John yeah, this is one of those situations where once you get into this type of question where you’re like, look, I’ve got
⏹️ ▶️ John video, I don’t wanna do a thing to it, but I wanna do exactly this thing in exactly this way, you’re basically singing
⏹️ ▶️ John an FFMPEG song. And yeah, it’s a painful song.
⏹️ ▶️ John there may be other better tools, I don’t know.
⏹️ ▶️ John lyrics make no sense. I’m just familiar with FFMPEG because it’s a very common tool
⏹️ ▶️ John and Casey talks about it all the time. But I’m sure professional video editors
⏹️ ▶️ John or people who are familiar with different kinds of tools have better ways to do this. But if you don’t wanna spend
⏹️ ▶️ John any money but just wanna get this job done and you’re willing to Google for a while, FFMPEG will probably
⏹️ ▶️ John eventually do what you want once you figure out how to make it work.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And by Google for a while, he means a while. Yeah,
⏹️ ▶️ John I mean, you’ll try a bunch of things that don’t work first. Here’s what I would recommend. I mean, I don’t know if Casey does a similar thing,
⏹️ ▶️ John but every time I tried to mess with a Venn peg, I have like test files that are very small.
⏹️ ▶️ John And I do all my testing on them. They’re representative, they’re the same as the files that I wanna deal with, but
⏹️ ▶️ John maybe the file I wanna deal with is like some like eight gig movie or something. Don’t do all your testing on that, it’ll take a long
⏹️ ▶️ John time. Test with small files first. And then when you finally get a working file that
⏹️ ▶️ John it has the characteristics that you want and have figured out the mile long command line incantation,
⏹️ ▶️ John then do it on your real files.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, that’s true. Another thing I do is oftentimes I just wanna test something, I’ll trim it to
⏹️ ▶️ Casey be, it’s dash T, I believe, where you can say only output like 10 seconds or
⏹️ ▶️ Casey something like that. So you can still use your eight gigabyte input, but it’s only gonna output 10 seconds and it’s gonna quit.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey But yeah, I mean, you can do this with FFmpeg for sure. It’s actually not that complicated an incantation.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey The complicated thing would be that the way I know how to do this is that you would need
⏹️ ▶️ Casey a plain text file that lists the names of all 400 videos
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that you’re looking to input. And if you can get that, even if you do it by hand, it’s actually a very straightforward incantation
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that I’ll put in the show notes. But that would require, again, a file that reads
⏹️ ▶️ Casey its plain text and it reads file space and then a file name, new line, file space, next file
⏹️ ▶️ Casey name, new line. And then you can have FFmpeg concatenate all of those
⏹️ ▶️ Casey videos. You would probably need to specify by hand like output resolution and stuff
⏹️ ▶️ Casey like that. So it’s not, I guess it’s not quite as easy as I thought, but the idea of mashing 400 video
⏹️ ▶️ Casey clips together is actually very straightforward if you’re willing to generate a
⏹️ ▶️ Casey file that has four, a plain text file that has 400 lines in it That is the
⏹️ ▶️ Casey names of all the files you’re trying to input. So this is doable for sure. And FFmpeg
⏹️ ▶️ Casey will do it. I don’t know if Handbrake will do this sort of thing. Of course, anytime I say FFmpeg, everyone else
⏹️ ▶️ Casey starts saying Handbrake because Handbrake is in many respects just a user interface, a
⏹️ ▶️ Casey GUI front end to FFmpeg. Again, it’s been a long time since I’ve played with Handbrake
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and it might do this sort of thing. And there is a Handbrake CLI for doing it on the command line which maybe
⏹️ ▶️ Casey would do this sort of thing. But yeah, certainly FFmpeg will do it.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And it’s not that inherently difficult. It is workable. And building
⏹️ ▶️ Casey on what John was saying about how do you get to be decent at FFmpeg? Yeah, I think I mentioned this before, but in
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Apple Notes, which is now my repository of random information, just like Evernote once
⏹️ ▶️ Casey was. Have you heard about WorkChat? Well, in Apple Notes, I have a folder that is
⏹️ ▶️ Casey FFmpeg, and it’s just examples of different incantations that I’ve thought I, that well, that I have
⏹️ ▶️ Casey used and that I thought I would come back to at some point. And this one of them is concatenating files.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And I can remember how to do it off the top of my head now, but for the first 10, 15 times I did it, I was like, wait,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey what do I need to do? And what does that plain text thing look like? And how does that work? And
⏹️ ▶️ Casey so having that sort of thing handy is very, very useful. And also, if you’re not really
⏹️ ▶️ Casey familiar with FFmpeg, I’ll put my primer that I wrote, I don’t know, what
⏹️ ▶️ Casey three, four years ago now it looks like. I’ll put that in the show notes for you to look at.
#askatp: Apple Podcasts API
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Moving right along, Brandon Weese writes, How does Overcast scrape iTunes? Does it use the iTunes Search
⏹️ ▶️ Casey API or does it scrape it from webpages?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It uses the iTunes Search API. It’s a very simple answer. It’s not that interesting. But yeah,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that’s it. I use the iTunes Search API. It’s been around forever. Apple
⏹️ ▶️ Marco seems to be okay with people using it in this way. And they have been for some time. It has
⏹️ ▶️ Marco basically never changed. I would not want to build something
⏹️ ▶️ Marco based around scraping web pages that I was actually making into a product for other people to use. Because scraping
⏹️ ▶️ Marco web pages is both hard to maintain and unreliable and can
⏹️ ▶️ Marco possibly get you into legal issues with the people you are scraping them from. And it’s not
⏹️ ▶️ Marco worth doing anything that requires that if you’re intending to make it a serious effort that you’re giving
⏹️ ▶️ Marco people. So yeah, I use the API the way I’m allowed to and that’s it.
⏹️ ▶️ John The API is so old, is it like a soap API? Like when does it return?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It returns JSON, actually.
⏹️ ▶️ John Wow, it’s pretty modern and fancy.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, it’s super easy to use. It’s one of those things like, it’s kind of like Usenet,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco like just don’t talk about it because it seems too good to be true
⏹️ ▶️ Marco don’t want somebody to realize this exists and shut it down. So like, we just, we don’t talk about it.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Anyway, thank you to our sponsors this week, Squarespace, HelloFresh, and Linode, and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco thank you to our members who support us directly. You can join atp.fm slash join. You
⏹️ ▶️ Marco can use our new annual or monthly options in your currency of choice. If your choice
⏹️ ▶️ Marco happens to be US dollars, Euro, or Great British pounds. Thank you, everybody, and we will talk to
⏹️ ▶️ John Now the show is over, they didn’t even mean to begin Cause
⏹️ ▶️ John it was accidental, oh it was accidental
⏹️ ▶️ John John didn’t do any research, Margo and Casey wouldn’t let him Cause
⏹️ ▶️ Casey it was accidental And you can find the show
⏹️ ▶️ John notes at atp.fm And if you’re into
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you can follow them at C-A-S-E-Y-L-I-S-S
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So that’s Casey Liss, M-A-R-C-O-A-R-M, and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco T. Marco Armin, S-I-R-A-C-U-S-A-C-R-A-Q-U-S-A
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s accidental, they didn’t mean
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to Accidental, check podcast so long.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I have some bell follow-up.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Some bell follow-up? I did not see that coming. All
⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John right, tell me more.
⏹️ ▶️ John you break another bell?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco No, I fixed the original bell.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So I pulled it out of the closet today because I had a theory. I had heard on
⏹️ ▶️ Marco one of the recent Merlin podcasts, I forget which one, I’ll probably do it by Friday, he was
⏹️ ▶️ Marco playing with a magnet with his bell. Now, these are
⏹️ ▶️ Marco metal bells, and I thought, oh, wait a minute, maybe the reason mine was getting all rattly was
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that the metal got magnetized in transit. Because if it gets magnetized, maybe like the little
⏹️ ▶️ Marco hammer thing in there that hits it doesn’t pull back correctly and like sticks to it a little too long and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco or you know, makes it like rattle weirdly. So I thought I, from the world of watches, I have
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a demagnetizer. So I thought maybe I can fix my original bell. Maybe it got magnetized
⏹️ ▶️ Marco by you know, being transported next to an iPad smart cover or something. And great,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I can just run my demagnetizer around. I took it out and I waved it over my compass to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco test whether it was magnetized or not, and it wasn’t. And I thought, okay, well, there goes that theory.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco But then I took out the working bell and I held them side by side and compared them.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And I realized that the old broken bell, the dome
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of the main bell-shaped part of the bell, it was not resting level
⏹️ ▶️ Marco on the broken one. it was tilted and it was touching the bottom bass part.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Whereas the functioning bell had a perfectly even air gap between those two parts.
⏹️ ▶️ John Your Berga one was muting itself, like you mute strings on a guitar.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco A little bit, yeah, except rattling itself instead. I thought, well, let me see if I can fix that.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco This is just, you know, metal. Maybe I can bend it back into place. And sure enough,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a like $10 bell is not made of very high quality or thick metal.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco So I could just bend it back with my hands, and now I have
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the original bell back to its former glory. It works fine. I could just, at some
⏹️ ▶️ Marco point in its various trips to WBC or the beach or whatever, it probably just got compressed
⏹️ ▶️ Marco in a bag and it bent down slightly and bent the metal. Now I
⏹️ ▶️ Marco have repaired my bell. I believe in repairability. And reuse,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco before I recycle things, I have my original bell back in service.
⏹️ ▶️ John Before you order 50 other bells in an attempt to get a new one of
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco the original bell. Which I’ll never
⏹️ ▶️ John Well, it’s a good thing, like my broken cheese graters. I keep them around too for parts. It’s a good thing you
⏹️ ▶️ John kept the original bell around.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yup, yup. So here we are, I’m back on the original bell.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, I can tell it has a warmer sound. Beep, beep, beep.