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

459: The Bluetooth Adds Warmth

Sweatpants, sneakers, public records, stairs, cars, some tech stuff occasionally mixed in, and what you really came for: the beeps.

Episode Description:

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


  1. Sweatpants & sneakers 🖼️
  2. Public records 🖼️
  3. Casey’s doing… fine
  4. Sponsor: Squarespace (code ATP)
  5. DACs don’t output stair-steps 🖼️
  6. Apple’s monitor-pricing conundrum
  7. Follow-up: Jr. vs. Sr. Developer
  8. Sponsor: Caséta by Lutron
  9. Mac Mini rumors 🖼️
  10. Sponsor: Linode
  11. #askatp: Canon, BMW, or Nintendo?
  12. #askatp: Backups vs. cloud services
  13. Ending theme
  14. John’s beeps 🖼️

Sweatpants & sneakers

Chapter Sweatpants & sneakers image.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco So I went on a little break, you know, a little vacation for Thanksgiving with the family

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and in order to keep things simpler, as I frequently do when I travel, I

⏹️ ▶️ Marco did not bring my Apple Watch because I figured that’s one less charger I need to deal with, right? So

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’m going to a bunch of different places, let me just bring my phone charger, I don’t have to worry about like a whole second one.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And I really missed it. Uh-oh. I

⏹️ ▶️ Marco finally reached the point in my Apple watchdom,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and in my watch in order, I think, where I want to wear it most of the time,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and I mostly only want to wear fancy mechanical watches when I’m

⏹️ ▶️ Marco like going out, like for dinner, or for a special occasion, or for

⏹️ ▶️ Marco non-common everyday things. Like for common everyday use, I’m pretty much wearing the Apple watch

⏹️ ▶️ Marco now. Apple Watch,

⏹️ ▶️ John the sweatpants of the watch world.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey So wait, so what is it that you missed out of curiosity? Was it notifications? Was it

⏹️ ▶️ Casey the tracking of your fitness and movement and things of that nature? What did you miss about it?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Notifications I miss initially. Like the first time

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I get the tap tap in my pocket and I look at my wrist and I can’t tell what it’s for, then I’m like, oh, I guess that’s kind of

⏹️ ▶️ Marco unfortunate. I forget about that within a day and don’t miss it anymore. Because

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I don’t enable that many notifications. It’s mostly text messages and calendar

⏹️ ▶️ Marco alerts that I really want to be notified of. It’s almost nothing else. What I did miss

⏹️ ▶️ Marco was the complications. Three in particular. Number

⏹️ ▶️ Marco one, I missed the day of the week. Regular watches

⏹️ ▶️ Marco have that too, right? They do occasionally. it’s not a very common complication,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco which honestly, frankly, doesn’t make sense to me, because mechanically speaking, it’s extremely similar

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to a date complication, and it’s usually triggered by some of the same parts. So it doesn’t really make a lot of sense why you

⏹️ ▶️ Marco wouldn’t have that on more watches than it is on, but it’s on very few,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco relative to the world of mechanical watches on a whole. Like, almost every mechanical watch that sells in reasonable

⏹️ ▶️ Marco numbers has a date. Very few have the day of the week, relatively speaking, to the date. So

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that’s—and I’ve I’ve occasionally had mechanical watchers that have had it. Like I had this wonderful Damasco for a while that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco had it. And I love having the day of the week because I actually need to know that. Like I have things that only happen on certain

⏹️ ▶️ Marco days like most people do. And I don’t know why this is not a more common complication with the exception

⏹️ ▶️ Marco of maybe just not wanting to take up the space with another wheel inside to have like the day wheel next to the day wheel and

⏹️ ▶️ Marco everything.

⏹️ ▶️ John It was like a cautionary tale for the self-employed. Most people do know what day of

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey the week it is. I was thinking the same thing. But

⏹️ ▶️ John if you are self-employed and if there’s nobody in your house who has a jobby job, you can lose track and you

⏹️ ▶️ John live at the beach. You definitely can lose track of what day it is.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Number two thing I missed was the temperature. I mean, very simple thing, I know, but this is something

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that, you know, no mechanical watch can do that. Well, actually that’s not entirely true. There’s occasionally

⏹️ ▶️ Marco mechanical watches that have thermometers in them, but they don’t work very well because they’re on your wrist. But anyway,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco for the most part, that’s not a thing that mechanical watches ever have. And so I definitely missed that, you know, that’s a common thing

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that as things are getting colder here, I like to know like what jacket should I put on?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And that’s something I find out by looking at the temperature. And then finally,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I missed timers. I frequently will do things like make coffee or tea

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and I need to know, I want a countdown timer for that. Or Adam will ask like, he’ll

⏹️ ▶️ Marco request me, count him down a five minute timer for like a math worksheet he’s doing where it has to be like a timed sprint for a math worksheet,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco stuff like that. I use timers all the time it turns out. is part of the reason why

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’m so annoyed at how mediocre they are on all Apple platforms. Like there’s all Apple platforms

⏹️ ▶️ Marco do timers in a way that I think could use significant improvement and then kind of a

⏹️ ▶️ Marco kind of fourth little bonus one sunset time, something I never care about in the summer

⏹️ ▶️ Marco because it’s late, but sunset time is very important when it happens at like

⏹️ ▶️ Marco noon like it does in the winter. So when you know when the sun’s and

⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s not that bad, but it’s like, you know, four o’clock maybe or 4.30. And when the sun is setting at 4.30

⏹️ ▶️ Marco in the afternoon, I need to know, like, I need to be able to do my dog walk before then because my

⏹️ ▶️ Marco dog is old and won’t walk in the dark. These kinds of things are all on my watch face all the time

⏹️ ▶️ Marco on the Apple Watch. And so I actually did really miss it for this time. You know,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I finally reached an equilibrium point with the Apple Watch where I have stopped trying to

⏹️ ▶️ Marco make it an analog watch because it’s a terrible analog watch. So I just use the,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco what is this face? Infograph Modular. I use Infograph Modular with complications, some of which

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’ve made, most of which I haven’t, and I leave it there now. It’s a digital watch. I’m fine

⏹️ ▶️ Marco with that because it’s a really good digital watch and a really terrible analog one. And I have the all-wheel-on-display

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that makes it very useful, and now complications have gotten a little more reliable than they have

⏹️ ▶️ Marco in the past. So ultimately, I’m now at the point where I am actually

⏹️ ▶️ Marco liking the Apple Watch, And I say that kind of reluctantly because I also love mechanical watches, but I do

⏹️ ▶️ Marco miss the utility of the Apple Watch when I’m not wearing it. So that has been what I’ve worn

⏹️ ▶️ Marco most of the time for the last year, really. And I think it’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco gonna keep going for a while.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey This is basically the strategy that I have for my mechanical watches. I have very unremarkable

⏹️ ▶️ Casey mechanical watches compared to what you’re used to. I have a Citizen that I really, really like

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that Aaron got me many years ago. It is not anything to write home about, but it’s important and special to me.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey And I have a, what is it, Movement, an MVMT, I think something like that, that my immediate younger

⏹️ ▶️ Casey brother had gotten me as a present for being a groomsman at his wedding. So that’s special to me as

⏹️ ▶️ Casey well. And every great once in a while, like probably two or three times a year, I’ll put on one of those, typically the Citizen,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey for like a wedding or something like that. And that’s about the only time I wear a mechanical watch. And I

⏹️ ▶️ Casey do really enjoy wearing mechanical watches for those kinds of situations.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I think it makes a lot of sense, especially for something like a wedding where if you have a piece of

⏹️ ▶️ Casey technology visible for pictures and things like that, you’re immediately dating those pictures.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey For the most part, if you ask me, for the most part, a men’s suit or a woman’s dress, I know we’re talking

⏹️ ▶️ Casey about fashion, we have no business doing so, but generally speaking, a decent suit or decent dress

⏹️ ▶️ Casey or whatever will mostly hold up over the years. I mean, it may

⏹️ ▶️ Casey look a little dated, but not outrageous. But if you see like a honking, like, or if you

⏹️ ▶️ Casey saw like an iPhone 3GS today in a wedding picture, you’d be like, whoa, that was a long

⏹️ ▶️ Casey time ago. Same thing with an Apple Watch, like, oh, you know, in 5, 10 years, we’re gonna look at these things that are, you know,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey so thick and beefy and whatnot and think, wow, those things were ugly. And so,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey so I really don’t, I don’t like the idea of flashing or flaunting

⏹️ ▶️ Casey to some degree any sort of technology on a picture that’s going to hopefully last for years to come.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey And so I basically have been in this mode that you’re now finding yourself backed into, which is, you know,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey hey, if you’re doing something special or fancy, then put on a special or fancy watch, you know, commensurate with the

⏹️ ▶️ Casey event. But otherwise, it’s nice having a little teeny computer on your wrist. Is it required? Of course

⏹️ ▶️ Casey not. But is it convenient? Heck yeah.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And you’re right, if you’ve ever seen a TV show that features iPhones

⏹️ ▶️ Marco in the show. That

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey happens a lot.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Apple is always getting themselves put in TV shows and everything. But they age,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco not only do they age proportionally to the actual age, they age faster. Because

⏹️ ▶️ Marco when Apple releases a new iPhone design, the previous design looks old.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco You instantly think it looks older, and it looks older than it is. If you’re looking

⏹️ ▶️ Marco at a pair of pants from three to four to five years ago, that’s gonna look

⏹️ ▶️ Marco pretty much the same as it looks today. Whereas if you look at a phone from three or five years ago, it’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco gonna look like DOS. Like it’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John gonna look so old

⏹️ ▶️ Marco by comparison because this world moves so quickly. And the Apple Watch is also, you know,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it still moves quickly. Like, you know, if you look at an Apple Watch, even already, like now that we’ve had like the Series 4,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco 5, 6, 7 design where it’s like the more rounded corners and, you know, a little bit adjusted shape, the previous generation

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Apple Watches, which they’re still selling with a Series 3, but the previous generation Apple Watches looks really

⏹️ ▶️ Marco like old and clunky by comparison. And that’s gonna keep happening over time.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco An Apple Watch, like on the formality scale, an Apple Watch is like a,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco right down the middle of the road pair of sneakers. So anytime you would not wear a pair of

⏹️ ▶️ Marco sneakers, you shouldn’t be wearing an Apple Watch. So like, if you’re wearing a suit, that is

⏹️ ▶️ Marco not an appropriate combination, you know? And look, and there’s plenty of time

⏹️ ▶️ Marco in life where a pair of sneakers is totally fine. I wear sneakers most of the time. It’s fine,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco but you can’t wear them with every outfit. And as you get up to the fancy level, you should

⏹️ ▶️ Marco not be wearing sneakers at a certain point. And that’s how the Apple Watch is.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Anytime you would question sneakers, you should also be questioning your Apple Watch. I

⏹️ ▶️ John think it’s fine to wear an Apple Watch with a formal outfit. I don’t think it’s the equivalent of sneakers.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco I know

⏹️ ▶️ John what you’re

⏹️ ▶️ Marco saying about that, but- No, it’s better to be wearing no watch than to be wearing an Apple watch with a formal outfit.

⏹️ ▶️ John No, I think it’s, because it’s not, it’s more subtle than you think. From a distance,

⏹️ ▶️ John it could be mistaken for a regular watch because at this point it is not so ridiculously, differently

⏹️ ▶️ John sized and shaped than the giant, especially men’s, those giant men’s watches may

⏹️ ▶️ John even be bigger and beefier than this. So I think it’s fine. It’s not like the screen is visible and glaring

⏹️ ▶️ John in the face of all your photos. If you see a little bit of an Apple Watch peeking out from your suit jacket, it’s fine. You have my permission.

⏹️ ▶️ John You don’t have mine.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, I think you’re both right, but I tend closer to

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco Marco. How can

⏹️ ▶️ Marco we both be right? We have literally the opposite

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey opinion on this issue.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey That’s

⏹️ ▶️ John been the way

⏹️ ▶️ Casey of the Casey. No, this is, first of all, this is, hey, have we met? This is episode what, 400 and something? No, what

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I mean by that is I think it is not as egregious as Marco says, but ultimately I come

⏹️ ▶️ Casey down more on Marco’s side than John’s in that I think you can get away with an Apple like John said, in situations

⏹️ ▶️ Casey where maybe you couldn’t get away with sneakers, but I still think that is a reasonable metric by which to question

⏹️ ▶️ Casey whether or not you should be wearing an Apple Watch. Like if you’re in a position that sneakers really aren’t socially acceptable,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey God, how are we talking about fashion again? If you’re in a situation when sneakers are perhaps not socially

⏹️ ▶️ Casey acceptable, then I would say that you should at least consider taking off

⏹️ ▶️ Casey your Apple Watch and or replacing it with something else.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco say there’s an exception to this principle and that is if it’s if you’re you know more

⏹️ ▶️ Marco formal than sneakers situation is just like your everyday work like if

⏹️ ▶️ Marco your office happens to require non sneakers as office wear like okay you’re fine to wear

⏹️ ▶️ Marco an Apple watch to work I’m talking about like you know special occasions family events

⏹️ ▶️ Marco fancy parties fan like whatever that you know that kind of thing things like attending a wedding

⏹️ ▶️ Marco or you know a funeral you know something like that where you would be going to a formal event, not like, you know, going

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to your office where they require you to wear khakis. That’s that’s different. Plus, God, I mean, the things people wear

⏹️ ▶️ Marco at their offices. The most, like, ill-fitting, like, baggy, you know, baggy suits

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and bad khakis. He’s like, yeah, your Apple watch is not the thing dragging that outfit down.

Public records

Chapter Public records image.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I have a revelation as well. So,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey you know how you kind of came crawling back to vinyl like a year or two ago and you’re like, well, you know, it

⏹️ ▶️ Casey still sounds like dirt and I hate everything about it, but it actually has its place. Remember that whole conversation?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco We’re going to get more into similar topics later.

⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t remember that exactly. When was…

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco I don’t remember when it was.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I developed an appreciation for what it’s good at. It’s not sound quality

⏹️ ▶️ Marco or convenience or reliability or anything

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John like that.

⏹️ ▶️ John I mean, I remember when you made the little like physical digital media player with like the SD

⏹️ ▶️ John cards or whatever. And I guess you did get a turntable at some point. I don’t know, maybe I blocked

⏹️ ▶️ John it out. Just stop listening to vinyl

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco people. Oh, and you got, I

⏹️ ▶️ Marco got to tell you one more thing. Sorry Casey, one more thing on that topic. Oh no. So one of the places

⏹️ ▶️ Marco we went last week for Thanksgiving, I already told you this, Casey, but.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey Oh yes,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I did see that.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John That

⏹️ ▶️ John was one of the saddest things I’ve ever seen. Yeah,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco so we stayed a night in a hotel room. And it was a somewhat recently redone place,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco so it was a little bit hipster. And they had advertised that there was a record player in each

⏹️ ▶️ Marco room with a curated selection of records for each room. That’s so great.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco We go in, and there’s a bunch of nice classic rock albums from like the 60s, you know, some Beatles,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco some Dylan, you know, Van Morrison, like, you know, some Zeppelin, like it was a pretty

⏹️ ▶️ Marco nice collection of a handful of records and everything. And they had this modern audio technica

⏹️ ▶️ Marco record player there. So, you know, you have this beautiful, you know, all analog medium, the whole

⏹️ ▶️ Marco point of vinyl is that it’s all analog. So what is the speaker of choice?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Next to the record player is a small Bose battery powered Bluetooth speaker.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco Emphasis on small,

⏹️ ▶️ John as in smaller than a tissue box. Yeah,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John like

⏹️ ▶️ Marco about the size of like, you know, maybe a large stick of deodorant. I

⏹️ ▶️ John mean, you might as well have just played it on your phone.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, and so the record player, apparently modern record players often, especially this one

⏹️ ▶️ Marco from Audio Technica, often offer Bluetooth output. So and of

⏹️ ▶️ Marco course when I got there, it wasn’t working because most Bose portable speakers have multi-pairing

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and so I went up and like no sound was coming out like all right let me see and I eventually

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know push I pushed the bluetooth button on the record player that lit up so that wasn’t even on okay so I turned that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco on and then still nothing’s coming out I turn up the volume on the speaker nothing coming out so I finally found the button on the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco speaker that was like the input select button and you push it and you just keep pushing it says iPhone iPhone iPhone

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Bob’s iPhone Jane’s iPhone iPhone iPhone and eventually Audio Technica ATV so then I

⏹️ ▶️ Marco then I and I finally found out how to do it, but my God, a record player through a crappy little Bluetooth

⏹️ ▶️ Marco speaker. It does not sound good.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey And

⏹️ ▶️ Marco what’s the point of the record? I mean, maybe the Bluetooth speaker adds warmth and

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey charm. No, no, no, that’s the other side of it. That’s the other side of it.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Nostalgia for crappy Bluetooth speakers. This

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco is just

⏹️ ▶️ John like the records that were there were also completely

⏹️ ▶️ Marco destroyed

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco because of records.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, like any of the records that were from the most popular artists, like the Beatles records

⏹️ ▶️ Marco were unplayable. Like, you know, you get through half a song before it started a skipping loop, where it just

⏹️ ▶️ Marco would play the same segment, skip, play the same segment, skip.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John It’s almost

⏹️ ▶️ John as if this format has drawbacks that beg for it to be replaced by something better.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey No, surely not.

⏹️ ▶️ John Like, the idea of having public records, like, I mean, I guess it’s better than the idea that people are going to bring their vinyl records

⏹️ ▶️ John and pack them in their suitcase so they can all shatter when like,

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco you know, they

⏹️ ▶️ John throw it in the back of their car. But you go there, it’s like, no worry, we’ve got records for you.

⏹️ ▶️ John just a public collection of records. Like, you just know they’re gonna look like the toys in the waiting room at the doctor’s

⏹️ ▶️ John office for the kids. They’ve just been

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco mangled by wave after wave of

⏹️ ▶️ John sick children. That’s what these records are

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco like.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, it was funny. Like, I wanted to, like, we got like halfway through Rubber Soul, and I wanted to finish the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco album, but it kept skipping so badly. So I just opened up my laptop and played it there. And

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John it was so much better. You can play it on the

⏹️ ▶️ John same Bluetooth speaker and get the same high-fidelity audio.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco No, I just played it out of the built-in speakers on the new 16-inch, and they’re great. you should

⏹️ ▶️ John compete, which has more bass, this deck of cards Bluetooth speaker that’s playing vinyl

⏹️ ▶️ John or my iPhone?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, I mean, and by the way, the vinyl format itself is not super great at bass for many good reasons.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John That’s what I’m

⏹️ ▶️ Marco saying. But no, actually, I think the Bluetooth speaker did have more bass, but, cause that’s one thing. The modern,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco so this is also my first time traveling with the new 16 inch. It’s really surprisingly decent,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco but it’s still, like for speakers, but it’s still not speakers. Like it’s still not

⏹️ ▶️ Marco big speakers. It still sounds like laptop speakers. It just sounds like really good laptop

⏹️ ▶️ Marco speakers. But yeah, it’s still very much laptop speakers. But still, very impressive device overall.

Casey’s doing… fine

⏹️ ▶️ Marco All right, so Casey

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Sorry, so so you have been for two or three years now

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Maybe even more than that for all I know on a bit of a crusade trying to tell everyone

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that the LG ultra fine monitor is neither ultra nor fine and I’ve had one

⏹️ ▶️ Casey for a couple of weeks now and I have to say When everything is working appropriately

⏹️ ▶️ Casey not unlike my BMW It is a great it is a great monitor that I got for a really good deal and

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I don’t regret it not one bit, I mean that genuinely. However, this particular example is on

⏹️ ▶️ Casey the older side and it appears based on not very scientific

⏹️ ▶️ Casey testing at all that John will surely poke holes into. It appears that perhaps the

⏹️ ▶️ Casey main USB-C connector in the back, so there’s four USB-C connectors and one of them is the one

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that you’re allowed to transmit like power and the video signal on and the other three are just

⏹️ ▶️ Casey like a USB hub, right? The one connector that transmits power and data

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and all that seems to be a little bit on the flaky side. And so I think

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that’s what happened last week when we were recording was it just decided, or maybe I don’t know, maybe I grazed

⏹️ ▶️ Casey the cable or something like that, and it just decided, eh, I think I’m gonna not work right now. And

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that was undesirable. So of interest to you, Marco, my

⏹️ ▶️ Casey MixPre 3 is connected directly to my laptop this week not through the monitor.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Thank you. You’re welcome. Not through the monitor as it was last week.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Have you tried, just for the sake of argument, have you tried a different Thunderbolt cable?

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I have, I have. And so I actually went to Apple and bought their $40, whatever

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it is, like two and a half foot Thunderbolt cable and had no better luck

⏹️ ▶️ Casey with that. In fact, that cable is currently carrying this audio from the MixPre 3 to the laptop as we speak.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey But

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco I tried that

⏹️ ▶️ Casey one. It’s a little overkill, but hey, it does the job. I tried that one,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I tried a Amazon one that I had laying around that I think was not

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Thunderbolt 3, it was like some other flavor of Thunderbolt. I’m really starting to hate USB-C

⏹️ ▶️ Casey in a whole new way now because now it matters to me what cable quality I have for these sorts of things

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and it’s completely unintelligible. But nevertheless, I had an Amazon cable around that would run the monitor actually

⏹️ ▶️ Casey fairly consistently at like 4K, but it wouldn’t do it at 5K, which is very frustrating.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Anyway, so I’m back on the cable that came with the monitor, and 98%

⏹️ ▶️ Casey of the time it works great. But every once in a while it decides, nope, I’m going to just sputter to death.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey And then I have to reach behind and jiggle the little connection. And suddenly it all comes back to life again. But it

⏹️ ▶️ Casey is very frustrating. I still stand by the purchase. And I know that

⏹️ ▶️ Casey my friend Chris, who sold it to me, is probably listening to this and freaking out right now. I stand by the purchase. I would say that to make him feel

⏹️ ▶️ Casey better, but it’s also true. I stand by the purchase. I got this at an incredible steal and

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it was infinitely cheaper than a ridiculously overpriced Apple

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Pro Display XDR. However, I kind of want a Pro Display XDR right now.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey It is just barely frustrating enough to get on my nerves and just it

⏹️ ▶️ Casey ruined the way because the thing is when it’s working properly as it is right now, it really is a great monitor. The

⏹️ ▶️ Casey stand sucks, but the monitor’s fine.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Great might be a stretch. I would say

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey it’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco ultra

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey fine.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, it’s an ultra fine monitor when everything is working properly. But yeah,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it’s probably just this particular example, which again, I got it to steal. No regrets, truly no regrets. I

⏹️ ▶️ Casey think this was the best, I don’t know, compromise I could come up with. But

⏹️ ▶️ Casey if any of you would like to go to and supply me with a Pro Display

⏹️ ▶️ Casey XDR, I wouldn’t complain.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco So a few things, number one, tell your friend this is why you don’t sell technology to people you know.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey No, no, no, no, no, no, no. He

⏹️ ▶️ Casey has nothing to feel bad about, truly. He has nothing to feel bad about. He really, really doesn’t, because as far as he knew, everything

⏹️ ▶️ Casey was working perfectly, and 98% of the time it does, and he gave it to me at a great deal. So he

⏹️ ▶️ Casey has nothing to feel bad about, hand to God.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco This is the story of the LG 5K. It’s kind of similar, but not as bad, but kind

⏹️ ▶️ Marco of similar to the butterfly keyboard thing, where you would have a problem with it, And if you ask people

⏹️ ▶️ Marco on Twitter or whatever, a third of the people saying, yeah, I had the same problem, mine flaked out

⏹️ ▶️ Marco or it died or whatever. And you’ll have other people saying, what do you mean, mine’s been rock solid.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John What are you talking about?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And it’s enough people say it’s been bad for them that there’s definitely clearly

⏹️ ▶️ Marco problems with reliability, but then somebody will say, oh, I managed a fleet

⏹️ ▶️ Marco of 50 of these for my office and we’ve had zero failures. And you’re like, what?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco But yeah, there’s definitely something up with them. They have made multiple minor revisions over time. And

⏹️ ▶️ Marco so some people try to say, well, the first, the A and B revisions were bad, but then they fixed

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the C revision. But who knows? It’s hard to get solid data on that. But the result

⏹️ ▶️ Marco is you’re having a very similar experience. Actually, you’re having a worse experience than I was with

⏹️ ▶️ Marco mine. Mine works, it’s just mediocre.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I actually genuinely stand accepted like my friend Chris, he said that the stand is a piece of garbage.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey You have said the stand is a piece of garbage. Guess what? It’s a piece of garbage. Like it’s, it functions

⏹️ ▶️ Casey as a stand and that’s about the most praise I can give it. But that, that bill of goods was as, as you

⏹️ ▶️ Casey know, it said on the tin. Chris said to me before he sold it, he said, I’m telling you, the stand’s a piece of trash. And I was like, okay, it’s

⏹️ ▶️ Casey fine. It’s fine. Fine. Um, but the display, like again, it really is a nice, it’s not

⏹️ ▶️ Casey stupendous. It’s not as fancy as your XDR, but it is a nice display. And when paired with the laptop,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey especially this one, which is happy to run in clamshell mode, I really truly do love it. I

⏹️ ▶️ Casey really, really do. It’s just that persnickety, like every great once in a while, I’m done. That

⏹️ ▶️ Casey gets a little frustrating to say the least.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco Yeah,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and the ports being unreliable is also not great.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Well, yes and no. Like now that I’m not plugging my microphone interface through

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it, it’s fine because I don’t really have anything of note plugged into the back of it. Except that’s actually a perfect

⏹️ ▶️ Casey segue. I owe you a dollar. It’s a perfect segue to

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco I

⏹️ ▶️ Casey have plugged in my brand new Apple Magic

⏹️ ▶️ Casey what is it a magic trackpad whatever the external trackpad is. Yeah, I am running it plugged in because I don’t

⏹️ ▶️ Casey know if it’s a I don’t know if the trackpad is a lemon. I don’t think it is. I’ll explain why in a second. Maybe my computer’s

⏹️ ▶️ Casey a lemon. I don’t know. But the the Bluetooth issues that I have never had in my entire life. That’s the same

⏹️ ▶️ Casey thing as you were talking about, the butterfly keyboard, the Bluetooth issues that I’ve never ever ever had with any computer I’ve ever owned,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it’s killing me with this one. So what seems to happen, this is again, John can poke a million holes

⏹️ ▶️ Casey in this, but the feeling of what’s happening is that like either the laptop

⏹️ ▶️ Casey or the trackpad or some combination thereof are like trying to go into

⏹️ ▶️ Casey low power mode too often. So like the second I stop mousing around,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I don’t notice any difference, but then I I go, like I pick up my finger or whatever, then I put my finger back on the trackpad and I go

⏹️ ▶️ Casey to mouse around some more, and it’s like, hmm, what? Oh, oh, oh, yes, okay, sure,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey yeah, I’ll

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John do that.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey And it’s like the most frustrating, infuriating thing. And I haven’t gotten scientific about it. I haven’t

⏹️ ▶️ Casey moved the computer and trackpad elsewhere, I don’t think, but I did try the trackpad

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that worked great with my iMac Pro, the same iMac Pro that was sitting at the same desk, and

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that had a similar problem. Now, I do believe I have used

⏹️ ▶️ Casey the trackpad without the LG plugged in, and it’s still at the same problem, because early LGs, of which this might be one,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey did have that like Wi-Fi interference thing, but I’ve never noticed anything with this particular LG in that

⏹️ ▶️ Casey capacity. So I don’t know what the deal is, but I’ve tried two different trackpads, and they both seem

⏹️ ▶️ Casey to express the same problem. I’m hoping that like some sort of software or firmware update or something

⏹️ ▶️ Casey can make it better, but currently I have it plugged into the

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco damn

⏹️ ▶️ Casey back of my…

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco I have

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it plugged into the back of this LG because it’s more reliable that way. And it’s preposterous. I shouldn’t need a cable for this damn

⏹️ ▶️ Casey trackpad that I just bought for a gazillion dollars.

⏹️ ▶️ John I’ve heard a couple of reports of Monterrey having some weird issues with Bluetooth stuff. And anecdotally, my wife’s

⏹️ ▶️ John crappy third-party Bluetooth keyboard that she likes to use has been like spitting out double characters and other weird

⏹️ ▶️ John stuff since upgrading to Monterrey. I hope it’s a just, you know, software stack

⏹️ ▶️ John thing that they sort out in 12.1, But we’ll see.

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DACs don’t output stair-steps

Chapter DACs don't output stair-steps image.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Alright, so apparently taking me to task about vinyl isn’t quite done yet. So Marco,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey what else would you like to say, dear?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Okay, so you were on a delightful episode of the Double Density podcast, we will link to it in the show

⏹️ ▶️ Marco notes. That was a nice interview you did there. You briefly breezed

⏹️ ▶️ Marco by and did like a quick little hit on audiophiles, like the PH kind, not the F kind.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And one of the things you remarked upon is something that I hear all the time that I used to believe.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco The ability on whether audiophiles are able to hear what’s between

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the stair-step output of a digital sound wave,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco as opposed to an analog wave from a record, would be a continuous sound wave.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco But when you digitize sound, you sample it, and so you visualize it as a stair-step. So

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think I mentioned this a long time ago on the show, but— You did. Yeah, I did. But we will once again

⏹️ ▶️ Marco link to this wonderful pair of videos on

⏹️ ▶️ Marco by this person, Monty, who I think invented the Og Vorbis format, or at least was involved in the inventing of it.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco But the idea is the way that DACs work, that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco convert digital sound back to analog for waves, The

⏹️ ▶️ Marco output of digital sound formats, like when you output digital

⏹️ ▶️ Marco audio back to analog, is not a stair-step wave.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco The way it works is complicated, I don’t fully understand it, but watch this video, you will see.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco He uses a, what’s the? A oscilloscope. Yeah, so he uses an oscilloscope

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and shows you, like even through like a regular consumer-grade DAC, the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco digital input and what samples are producing what output

⏹️ ▶️ Marco on the oscilloscope, and it produces perfectly smooth waves.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco That’s what DACs do, that’s how they work. The conversion is not like a thousand percent flawless,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco but it’s close enough that humans can’t tell the difference. And within sampling

⏹️ ▶️ Marco theory, it’s important to know also that you’re not losing any frequencies

⏹️ ▶️ Marco if you are capturing things like, you know, with a high enough sample rate so that the Nyquist

⏹️ ▶️ Marco level or whatever like is within the realm of human hearing. And that, and 44.1 kilohertz is within the realm

⏹️ ▶️ Marco of human hearing. Like it’ll capture every frequency we can actually hear. So digital audio

⏹️ ▶️ Marco is not missing information that analog formats like records have

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that is within human hearing. They’re missing the

⏹️ ▶️ John noise though. Yes,

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco they’re missing the noise.

⏹️ ▶️ John The noise added by hundreds of hotel guests Scratching up the record that’s missing from the digital version. You can’t

⏹️ ▶️ John get the noise into it No matter how many times you play it doesn’t get scratched up I mean, I guess you can have bit

⏹️ ▶️ John rot eventually But that’s not the really the fault of the files more of the fault of the media that it’s on

⏹️ ▶️ Marco right and you know And DAX aren’t perfect and they can have components that flake out or die as well but

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it the the flaws inherent in digital conversion are Well well

⏹️ ▶️ Marco below what humans can hear like in their levels and frequencies and everything else like

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John that. So

⏹️ ▶️ John the chat room is on the same wavelength as me. I was going to say, if you would like to learn more about this topic, more than perhaps could be

⏹️ ▶️ John covered in a YouTube video, get an undergraduate education in electrical engineering and take a signals and systems class.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Well, I did, I did, but it was 20 years

⏹️ ▶️ John ago. And then Casey either flunk that class or forgot everything in it.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Okay, that’s hurtful, because I think I might have. And secondly, and secondly, it was 20

⏹️ ▶️ Casey years ago. So I’ve absolutely forgotten it.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco But yeah, just what What you need to know to be a responsible nerd, listeners out there, is that digital

⏹️ ▶️ Marco audio output from a DAC is not a stair-step wave. It is a perfectly smooth wave that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco perfectly represents the frequencies that we’re going to put within the range that we can hear.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey All right, I’m sorry. I’m sorry. many regrets and the offending person has been sacked.

Apple’s monitor-pricing conundrum

⏹️ ▶️ Casey All right, tell me, I think, John, about Apple’s monitor pricing conundrum.

⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, we should have gripped this up with a monitoring talk, but it’s fine. It’s a slight diversion into vinyl. I was

⏹️ ▶️ John thinking about this because we talked about it on the last show, you know, the monitor, well, maybe the show before

⏹️ ▶️ John that, the monitor situation and how Apple needs to make a monitor. And we were also talking about the new displays in the MacBook Pros.

⏹️ ▶️ John And I realized that kind of, you know, in rectus parlens, Apple kind of missed their window here.

⏹️ ▶️ John We’ve been complaining about the lack of a reasonable Apple monitor for

⏹️ ▶️ John many years now. And the old complaint was, hey, everybody loves the 5K iMac.

⏹️ ▶️ John Why not? Why not just make a 5K iMac without the Mac? You know, same same display

⏹️ ▶️ John that’s in there, you know, put it in a small case, don’t give it a chin or whatever and sell that to us. And you could

⏹️ ▶️ John sell it for a pretty high percentage of the cost of a bottom end 5K iMac,

⏹️ ▶️ John because your Apple, you know, you know, we kind of we kind of know what the price ceiling is like. well, if I can get a 5K

⏹️ ▶️ John iMac for this price, surely just the monitor part would have to be the same price or less.

⏹️ ▶️ John I mean, it stands to reason you’re moving the computer. No, no SSD, no CPU, no speakers.

⏹️ ▶️ John No, it’s just, well, you know, maybe you could speak anyway. Just give us that monitor. But

⏹️ ▶️ John Apple never did that. And we complained for years and years, and they never did it. And it was all sad. And you know, we never got what we wanted.

⏹️ ▶️ John But that’s kind of the mindset we were in where we’re saying like, Oh, Apple should to just make like a 1500 to $2,000 monitor.

⏹️ ▶️ John That’s the idea of the 5K iMac without the iMac in it. That’s what we’re thinking. But these

⏹️ ▶️ John new laptops have really screwed things up. And that’s why our previous discussion about pricing, you know,

⏹️ ▶️ John went in surprising directions. The new laptops all have screens that are like, you know,

⏹️ ▶️ John better miniature Pro Display XDRs. Obviously not as big as a Pro Display XDR, they have fewer pixels

⏹️ ▶️ John in them, but they go just as bright, 1600 nits max brightness. They have way more zones, although

⏹️ ▶️ John I haven’t been able to confirm this. They talk about how many LEDs are in there, but the number of LEDs is not necessarily matching

⏹️ ▶️ John the number of zones. So I can’t tell if these things actually have 10,000 zones or they just have 10,000 LEDs. But

⏹️ ▶️ John either way, they surely have more zones and more LEDs than the Pro Display XDR. They have

⏹️ ▶️ John great color reproduction. They have high refresh, which the Pro Display XDR doesn’t have, right?

⏹️ ▶️ John So these are their pro laptop screens. The specs on these are so good

⏹️ ▶️ John that it doesn’t seem like an Apple-ish thing to do to introduce

⏹️ ▶️ John a standalone screen that does not at least match the specs of their pro laptop

⏹️ ▶️ John screens. Because historically, when Apple sells a big monitor, a 27 inch monitor or whatever,

⏹️ ▶️ John or a 5K monitor, it’s something that you’re selling to go along with the pro

⏹️ ▶️ John stuff, right? If you’re just getting a MacBook Air, maybe you’re not gonna get a 5K monitor

⏹️ ▶️ John to go with it. Like those are two different price classes of things, right? There’s nothing stopping Apple from making

⏹️ ▶️ John essentially the, you know, an LG UltraFind or a 5K iMac without the iMac, they could do that right now,

⏹️ ▶️ John do it today, sell it for 1500 bucks, it’s a perfectly fine product. But it doesn’t fit with Apple’s

⏹️ ▶️ John line now that they’ve made the laptop monitors so good. And as we discussed in previous shows,

⏹️ ▶️ John if you look for a 5K-ish or even 4K-ish

⏹️ ▶️ John monitor with similar specs to what the new MacBook Pro screens

⏹️ ▶️ John have, costs huge amounts of money. First of all, they’re hard to even find, especially

⏹️ ▶️ John if you want everything. I want high refresh, 1600 nits, 99% P3 color gamut coverage.

⏹️ ▶️ John Like, good luck finding a monitor that even does that. And if you do find it, oh, it’s $3,000, it’s $5,000,

⏹️ ▶️ John right? And then it’s like, well, Apple already sells almost a more than $5,000 monitor. It’s the Pro Display

⏹️ ▶️ John XDR and it doesn’t have high refresh and it doesn’t have as many backlight zones on it. And that’s

⏹️ ▶️ John what we were trying to avoid. Hey, Apple, you should make a monitor that’s not the Pro Display XDR.

⏹️ ▶️ John So it’s got me wondering if, you know, because Apple decided to never make the

⏹️ ▶️ John 5K iMac without the iMac, they never did that. Seems like they probably never will.

⏹️ ▶️ John And then I’m trying to figure out, is there a space in the realm of reality

⏹️ ▶️ John for an Apple monitor that costs less than the Pro Display XDR, but is as good

⏹️ ▶️ John as the laptop monitors? Granted, it would be smaller, 5K instead of 6K, let’s say.

⏹️ ▶️ John Right? But then how, you know, again, how much would a 5K monitor

⏹️ ▶️ John with similar specs to the MacBook Pro screens cost instead of being, what is the XDR? It’s $6,000?

⏹️ ▶️ John Maybe it’s $5,000? And is that worth making a product

⏹️ ▶️ John because it’s $1,000 less? Is it a $4,500 monitor? Because, you know, just look for a PC, you know,

⏹️ ▶️ John I was looking for my PlayStation. Just look for a 4K PC monitor, quote unquote

⏹️ ▶️ John PC monitor, a 4K monitor from any manufacturer that matches the specs of the MacBook

⏹️ ▶️ John Pro ones. If you can find one, then see what the price is. I don’t really understand how Apple

⏹️ ▶️ John can introduce a large 27 inch-ish

⏹️ ▶️ John retina monitor that matches the laptop’s display. And if they can’t do that, I don’t

⏹️ ▶️ John really see them ever introducing a non-HDR 5K monitor

⏹️ ▶️ John at this point.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco What we’ll be telling is, what the heck do they do for the large iMac? That’s the real

⏹️ ▶️ Marco question here. I can’t imagine them launching a high-end, larger iMac

⏹️ ▶️ Marco with a worse screen than the MacBook Pro either. So I think whatever they do there,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that’s our answer. And I can’t imagine that they

⏹️ ▶️ Marco would price the large iMac at greater than a $3,000 starting point.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Because the previous 27-inch was somewhere in the high 2000s, right? I think that’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco right. Yeah, so it’s probably gonna be like,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco at the most, a $3,000 entry price for whatever larger iMac they end up making,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco assuming there is a larger iMac coming, which I don’t necessarily know that that’s a guaranteed thing, but I think it’s a very

⏹️ ▶️ Marco likely thing.

⏹️ ▶️ John I think it is coming, and I think you’re hitting on what the key thing is. Everything we’re talking about is either old technology,

⏹️ ▶️ John like the old 5K iMac, or currently released technology, like the laptop screens. But,

⏹️ ▶️ John you know, the same way we couldn’t have these laptop screens a year ago, when they come

⏹️ ▶️ John out with that bigger iMac, presumably it will have a screen made with technology that was not available. It’s not available

⏹️ ▶️ John now. It wasn’t available six months ago when the current crop of monitors were made. Like you know, display

⏹️ ▶️ John technology marches on. So I fully believe that when they come out with a big iMac,

⏹️ ▶️ John it will have a much better screen in terms of HDR and all that stuff than the old 5K iMac.

⏹️ ▶️ John I just wonder how good they can make it without

⏹️ ▶️ John destroying the price. Like because because the laptop screens are small, you can, you

⏹️ ▶️ John know, you can sort of go all out because it’s like it’s a 14 inch screen, right? And so we can we can

⏹️ ▶️ John afford to make it really good because it’s just not that much of it. But once you go out to 5k, there’s so

⏹️ ▶️ John much more of it, you might have to hold the price inside. You know, obviously, I don’t keep up with the latest in the panel

⏹️ ▶️ John market or whatever. it’s very easy to find scaled up versions of the MacBook

⏹️ ▶️ John Pro panels and just, oh, I just want that panel at 5k. Someone did that math. I think one of our listeners

⏹️ ▶️ John sent in like if you just scale up in terms of square inches, like the display in the 16 inch MacBook

⏹️ ▶️ John Pro costs this much. And so if I scale up to 5k, it costs this much. And you know, that math

⏹️ ▶️ John mostly works out to a reasonably priced iMac. And then we’re back into the previous situation, which is okay, we’ll

⏹️ ▶️ John just give me that iMac without the iMac. And then Apple could feel that display. The point is we haven’t seen

⏹️ ▶️ John that yet. That doesn’t yet exist. And I don’t think it exists. What I was trying to get at is I don’t think it exists anywhere else

⏹️ ▶️ John either. I don’t think there’s any sort of Microsoft Surface Studio with these specs. There’s no gaming monitor with

⏹️ ▶️ John these specs. This is technology that has not yet been released to the mass market as far as I know. So

⏹️ ▶️ John it’s kind of an unknown. Obviously it will be possible eventually.

⏹️ ▶️ John Hopefully it will be possible in the first half of 2022 when I hope to see the new iMac.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey So if you do need a 5K iMac without the iMac, what you can use is, I think

⏹️ ▶️ Casey long ago, sponsor Luna Display, which just released a new version. Yes, they did sponsor

⏹️ ▶️ Casey us. Okay, they just released a new version that offers 4K and 5K support officially. So I had tried

⏹️ ▶️ Casey this before I packaged my iMac Pro up for sale, and in my experience, this

⏹️ ▶️ Casey was a couple of weeks ago now, it was basically unusable. And

⏹️ ▶️ Casey as it turns out, I think that’s because I didn’t know at the time, it wasn’t really officially supported. Now

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it is. So you can get 4K at 60Hz on a Mac or a PC, and you can get

⏹️ ▶️ Casey 5K at 30Hz on a PC or 45Hz on a Mac. I can’t speak for 45Hz,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey but I have seen 5K at 30Hz in a different situation, and it is not great because

⏹️ ▶️ Casey your mouse cursor seems like it is totally wigging out and not moving the way you

⏹️ ▶️ Casey expect it to. I have not tried it with Luna Display, so maybe Luna does a better job. Who knows? But

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I do think that’s pretty cool that that you can do 4K at 60 hertz on a Mac or a PC. And if

⏹️ ▶️ Casey my iMac can’t get sold by some other mechanism, then maybe I will just turn it into an external display.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey If the combination of the iMac not selling and this LG just completely pooping its pants

⏹️ ▶️ Casey happens. But anyway, for those of you who happen to have an old iMac laying around, you might wanna give that a shot.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I love the idea of you having this Xeon workstation

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey that’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco sitting there doing nothing except showing a video display from another computer.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey You never know, could happen. Oh, that’s

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John sad.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, it is sad, but you know, This is the world I’m living in right now.

Follow-up: Jr. vs. Sr. Developer

⏹️ ▶️ Casey We also got some really good follow-up from, let’s see who was this, Nick Matsakis,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey with regard to junior versus senior developers, which was an Ask ATP from last week. And I just wanted to read a quick excerpt from Nick.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey To get hired or promoted into senior software engineering in his particular corporation, you also need to have

⏹️ ▶️ Casey the skills to deliver technical artifacts through others. This means you need to be able to mentor junior engineers, but put processes

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and tooling in place so things don’t go off the rails, and know when you need to go deep versus trust your juniors to get the job

⏹️ ▶️ Casey done. Nick continues, I feel that developers are more often career limited by their soft

⏹️ ▶️ Casey skills. These skills are hard to quantify and develop not, quote, more of the same of what you were evaluated

⏹️ ▶️ Casey at as a junior. Junior devs love to build stuff, that’s why they got into the game, and get obvious rewards for building

⏹️ ▶️ Casey stuff. It’s in the job title. So many hit a wall when they try to move to senior development and the job is changed out from

⏹️ ▶️ Casey under them. Or worse, they get promoted based on strong technical skills but then make bad decisions or fail to adequately mentor their

⏹️ ▶️ Casey juniors so the team falls apart without them. I thought that was pretty good.

⏹️ ▶️ John Also known as the Peter Principle, being promoted to your level of incompetence. I was a really good developer. I keep getting promoted and

⏹️ ▶️ John promoted. And now I’m in charge of other people. And I’m not good at this job. And now I stopped getting promoted. That’s what the

⏹️ ▶️ John Peter principle is for people who weren’t around in the 60s or whatever the hell it was made up. And it is still a thing.

⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, I think the ask ATP question was focusing on the technical stuff. It’s like, what kind of things do I need to learn? The object

⏹️ ▶️ John oriented programming. That’s kind of why we got why we went off in the direction of like technical skills and stuff like that. But this is all

⏹️ ▶️ John definitely true. Like this is just to get anywhere in the workplace. Forget about your job changing, which is definitely true

⏹️ ▶️ John as you march up in seniority. I think we touched on a little bit of saying like, uh, you know, if you keep getting promoted,

⏹️ ▶️ John you’ll eventually be like CTO. And the job of CTO is so incredibly different from the job of entry

⏹️ ▶️ John level developer, but there is a career path between them. But there are big leaps in there depending

⏹️ ▶️ John on your organization. Even if you’re never going to management, even if you’re an individual contributor for the entire

⏹️ ▶️ John time, you still have to learn how to, you know, work with and through others and mentor people. And these,

⏹️ ▶️ John you know, calling them soft skills is generally a derogatory term. It’s like, well, It’s the hard manly skills

⏹️ ▶️ John like programming,

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey but then there’s

⏹️ ▶️ John the soft skills like writing. It’s like, wait, how are they different? Well, you see, writing is squishy,

⏹️ ▶️ John but when you write things that aren’t words, that’s hard. Anyway,

⏹️ ▶️ John as anyone who has programming, at least you have a compiler to check your syntax.

⏹️ ▶️ John And no, grammar really doesn’t count, people. So anyway, all I’m saying is that the quote unquote soft

⏹️ ▶️ John skills are much more difficult in the grand scheme of things than the quote unquote hard skills,

⏹️ ▶️ John especially at almost all levels of software development that people are likely to engage at.

⏹️ ▶️ John Just because even at the junior and mid-level of being a developer, you have to write documentation

⏹️ ▶️ John and you have to communicate with people to do your job. And that means you need to be able to express yourself through the written

⏹️ ▶️ John word and you need to be able to read words written by other people and understand them. And those basic

⏹️ ▶️ John skills of reading and writing might not seem like what you thought you were getting into when you were a software developer. They’re part of every

⏹️ ▶️ John job. now in the age of email, there are very few quote unquote knowledge worker

⏹️ ▶️ John jobs where you will not be leaning heavily on and be eventually perhaps

⏹️ ▶️ John limited by your ability to communicate well in the written word, in prose,

⏹️ ▶️ John like not code, like just writing people emails, writing documentation, writing proposals, or even speaking,

⏹️ ▶️ John speaking in a meeting, pitching your idea to a larger group. Like those

⏹️ ▶️ John are gonna come up in every job, not just software. So people

⏹️ ▶️ John like to focus on, oh, which three letter acronym in programming do I have to learn to become a super duper senior whatever,

⏹️ ▶️ John when in the reality is, and I’m not even touching on things like office politics, when the reality is that the thing that really makes you good

⏹️ ▶️ John at the next level of your job might have nothing to do with programming.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, and office politics can be quite an adventure depending on where you are. So be careful for that too.

⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, that’s a different skill set. And I think the key skill there is knowing when it’s time to leave.

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Mac Mini rumors

Chapter Mac Mini rumors image.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Let’s talk about Mac Mini rumors. So this broke originally back in like May or something like

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that. And this was Jon Prosser, if I recall correctly. We’ll put a link to his YouTube video in the show

⏹️ ▶️ Casey notes. But I guess there’s been some new developments. I haven’t seen this myself. I went looking

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and I must have missed it somehow. So what’s what’s going on these days?

⏹️ ▶️ John I was expecting to see like, okay, well, you know, this is just a fanciful idea. But now we’ll get the

⏹️ ▶️ John rumors will get more solid and we’ll find out what the real deal is going to be as we get closer. And from my

⏹️ ▶️ John vague glancing off the Mac rumor sphere, it seems like those

⏹️ ▶️ John old rumors are just being repeatedly, if not confirmed, then supported by

⏹️ ▶️ John all the evidence that we have. So I thought it might be time to talk more seriously about these Mac mini rumors,

⏹️ ▶️ John start taking it more seriously as a possibility that Apple might introduce a thing like this. Because I look at it and I’m like, yeah,

⏹️ ▶️ John okay, I get what you’re doing there. Like I see, okay, that gives me the spirit of what a new Mac mini

⏹️ ▶️ John might look like, but now they’re saying like, no, this isn’t the spirit of the new Mac mini, this is literally gonna be the new Mac mini.

⏹️ ▶️ John And I look at it and I have lots of thoughts and questions. So to describe what we’re talking about

⏹️ ▶️ John here, think of a Mac mini as it looks today, but even lower,

⏹️ ▶️ John even

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco skinnier, even

⏹️ ▶️ John flatter, right? And that’s,

⏹️ ▶️ John why is it flatter? Well, because it’s got ARM CPU and then they use less power and you don’t need all that space and

⏹️ ▶️ John we can make it smaller. And I kept going back and forth on this when thinking about this topic. It’s called

⏹️ ▶️ John the Mac Mini is right in the name. The fact that it’s small is the selling point of this computer. It’s

⏹️ ▶️ John the smallest Mac. It’s mini. Right. I get it. But

⏹️ ▶️ John I do look at this and say, what has been gained by making the

⏹️ ▶️ John Mac Mini not as tall on your desk because they reduced it? Let’s say they reduce about like a centimeter

⏹️ ▶️ John or something. Right. You’ve made it minier, I guess, but you’ve

⏹️ ▶️ John made it minier in a dimension that I don’t think matters for anybody except

⏹️ ▶️ John for Mac Mini Colo. Because they’re putting them in racks like books, you know?

⏹️ ▶️ John Even

⏹️ ▶️ Marco then, like once it’s smaller than a U, like who cares?

⏹️ ▶️ John No, but they stack them like vertically like books.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco Oh, that’s right. Yeah, yeah, yeah. So they can fit more into the

⏹️ ▶️ John width, right? So maybe it matters to them, but to the regular person, yeah, you have made it minier,

⏹️ ▶️ John but I’m not sure you’ve bought anything. Like if I wanted to make this minier,

⏹️ ▶️ John how about width and depth because it would take up less room on my desk, right? Rather than height because I’m not stacking

⏹️ ▶️ John them, right? And I don’t, there’s no sort of height restriction and so making it lower down doesn’t help me.

⏹️ ▶️ John Uh, and you know, fashionably, so it looks cooler or whatever. And if we never made them lower, they would still be like, you

⏹️ ▶️ John know, three times as high like the original Mac mini was like, I get all that. Like I’m not, I’m not saying you can’t ever make it smaller,

⏹️ ▶️ John but if I had to choose which dimension to make it smaller, I might pick a different one. And the other reason I think this is relevant is there were

⏹️ ▶️ John some rumors recently, more fanciful rumors of trying to think like, would

⏹️ ▶️ John Apple make a Mac Mini with a M1

⏹️ ▶️ John Max Duo, like basically two M1 Maxes, you know, the rumored Jade 2C die thing?

⏹️ ▶️ John Like would they ever make a Mac Mini with that? And I don’t think that these

⏹️ ▶️ John renders of a very slimmed down, even lower to the desk Mac Mini can

⏹️ ▶️ John support enough cooling for a duo because they’re

⏹️ ▶️ John so thin there. I mean, they’re not as thin as a laptop, but they’re close to and I don’t think the laptops can support a

⏹️ ▶️ John duo. I don’t think this can support and so that brought me back to the other thing is like, what what

⏹️ ▶️ John is gained by making this lower? Well, it looks kind of cooler, right? What is lost by making a lower if you had left at the same

⏹️ ▶️ John height? Could you support a duo in there? Maybe that’s a ridiculous machine. No one wants to spend $3,000 on a a

⏹️ ▶️ John Mac mini, although you might be able to with this one, depending if you put like an eight terabyte SSD in it or something, right?

⏹️ ▶️ John But I guess what I’m getting at is like, what is the role of the Mac mini in Apple’s lineup?

⏹️ ▶️ John It has long since stopped being like, oh, if you want the cheapest possible Mac, get this one. Like remember when the Mac mini was like 499,

⏹️ ▶️ John I think when it was first introduced or something like that. Those days are gone. Anyone who, if you want to get

⏹️ ▶️ John a decent Mac mini, you’re at a four digit price immediately. And it goes way up from there. And I think they’re

⏹️ ▶️ John great. Like, I think this is a great machine to have in the lineup. It doesn’t come with a keyboard and a mouse. then you can connect an external

⏹️ ▶️ John monitor if you can find one.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco Sorry, Casey.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey Yep.

⏹️ ▶️ John But hey, it can drive the XDR if you’ve got tons of bucks. And if you want a desktop Mac, but don’t

⏹️ ▶️ John want to have an integrated display, Apple offers you your product. I’m just wondering, like, where

⏹️ ▶️ John is this product? What is the pitch of this product? Like, to say a little bit more about the rumor

⏹️ ▶️ John diagram here, they also show the magnetic connector, power connector thingy from the

⏹️ ▶️ John iMac, right? And that presumably, and the rumors say that like this wouldn’t have an integrated power supply,

⏹️ ▶️ John so it would have a power brick with the magnetic connector thingy, right? But the magnetic

⏹️ ▶️ John connector, it’s like big and proprietary and it snaps into the little thing or whatever. But on

⏹️ ▶️ John the 24-inch iMac, it also has ethernet on the power brick. But this Mac mini has

⏹️ ▶️ John ethernet on the actual computer. So why would it use

⏹️ ▶️ John the same connector that has the ability to tunnel ethernet over it? Why not just use like an Apple

⏹️ ▶️ John TV type plug? And more importantly, why is the power supply outside the Mac mini? It becomes substantially

⏹️ ▶️ John less mini when a brick that is close to the volume of the entire

⏹️ ▶️ John Mac mini has to be dangling behind your desk somewhere. So these rumors confuse me.

⏹️ ▶️ John And I’m not sure what to think about a Mac mini like this. Obviously the performance would be great.

⏹️ ▶️ John It would be great to have a Mac mini, you know, a Mac mini with a M1 Pro or M1 Max inside it. It would be faster.

⏹️ ▶️ John It would be a great little developer machine if Apple ever made a decent external monitor. All that is great, but I just,

⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t understand the sort of design brief for this computer, other than to say,

⏹️ ▶️ John imagine a 24-inch iMac, but without the screen.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, these rumors, I think you’re right that they are confusing.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco How like, you know, the police kind of know when a story is, or like when someone’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco lying, or like grownups know when kids are telling a story about what happened, and it doesn’t make sense,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco because that usually means someone’s lying. Like, you can always kind of tell, like, all right,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco this story that like, like whenever a kid is explaining to you

⏹️ ▶️ Marco something that happened that is disputed, or that somebody got in trouble or should get

⏹️ ▶️ Marco in trouble for it, the first version of the story never makes a lot of sense.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco You’re always like, wait, why would this person do that? There has to be more information here that I’m missing,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco because that version of the story doesn’t make sense. And usually that’s because either something’s being left out

⏹️ ▶️ Marco or something’s being lied about. So in the case of Mac product,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco or Apple product rumors, if something about the rumors is really weird or doesn’t

⏹️ ▶️ Marco make sense, they’re probably just wrong. Not to say that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco they’re like intentionally lying, but just whatever information source this came from is probably

⏹️ ▶️ Marco either incomplete or just flat out wrong. Now, occasionally we do get surprised.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Occasionally, the rumors do say something that seems like it would be impossible or nonsensical,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and then Apple actually releases it just like that, and the rumors were right, and we’re blown away, like, oh my God, I can’t believe that I

⏹️ ▶️ Marco found a way to do this, or this actually even happened. But usually, the rumors where

⏹️ ▶️ Marco we can’t quite piece together how or why it would work that way, usually those end up being wrong.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And I, frankly, I don’t believe this Mac

⏹️ ▶️ Marco mini rumor in its entirety. You know, the allegedly

⏹️ ▶️ Marco leaked schematics of like this case, like the exterior case band that they have,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I don’t necessarily buy that. And the render that they made

⏹️ ▶️ Marco based on that leak is not only a bad representation of the leak,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco if you look at things like the vertical centering of the ports, it’s just wrong in the render compared to the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco leaked schematic, but also I just don’t buy that the Mac Mini would be this

⏹️ ▶️ Marco aspect ratio and would have those ports. So the ports are the more interesting

⏹️ ▶️ Marco thing to me, and I think the reason why this makes even less sense, the more we, like now that we’ve seen

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the like MacBook Pro story of Apple Silicon,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco one of the biggest problems that this purported Mac mini has is it has too many USB ports.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Now, one of the many problems with this design as depicted here in the alleged leak schematic

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and in the, you know, the render they made from it is that the USB-C ports are too close together.

⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, I was going to say that when I first saw this thing, that’s what made me think, okay, this is a fancy little render, but someone didn’t

⏹️ ▶️ John think this through because those USB-C ports are so close together that I don’t even think Apple’s slimmest

⏹️ ▶️ John USB-C connectors could fit. Like what we’re saying is if you put, if you filled all the ports, there’s four of them there

⏹️ ▶️ John and they’re vertical, right? If you put four USB-C connectors in those four ports, you’d put the first one in,

⏹️ ▶️ John fine. Then you try to put the one right next to it and it wouldn’t fit because the plastic parts would hit each other. These are so

⏹️ ▶️ John close together. The space between the ports is like half the distance of the half the width of

⏹️ ▶️ John the ports themselves. But then there’s the schematics and the schematics are like, well, you know,

⏹️ ▶️ John we have actual CAD files. This is a real thing. So I’m at the point now where I’m kind of panicking and I’m saying,

⏹️ ▶️ John I really hope Apple didn’t make a computer with USB-C ports that are so close together that we’re gonna have to buy,

⏹️ ▶️ John like there’d be this whole sort of like mini market for like these

⏹️ ▶️ John USB-C cables, new, narrow enough to fit on Apple’s new Mac Mini, like a sub-market where

⏹️ ▶️ John there have to be special products that they can gouge you on.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco It could be like the original iPhone’s headphone jack.

⏹️ ▶️ John Exactly.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco Yeah,

⏹️ ▶️ John yeah, yeah. It’s a great, I mean, peripheral makers much love it. It was just like, hey, I know

⏹️ ▶️ John you have a ton of these cables already, but they’re all useless. You have to buy our special one. And by the way, each one of them costs five bucks more.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey You know, I wonder if this schematic would, or the renderings were wrong.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Like I will be the first to tell you this is a very shaky theory, but what if those four USB-C

⏹️ ▶️ Casey ports, so let me describe the renderings that we’re seeing here. So there’s a circular power button, a larger circle

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that is that, you know, iMac style Mondo power connector. Then

⏹️ ▶️ Casey four USB-C ports, as you guys described, way too close together, just uncomfortably close together.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Two USB, what is it? A, I always get it wrong. USB-A ports, an Ethernet port, and an HDMI port.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey What if, and this is based on schematics that aren’t entirely clear

⏹️ ▶️ Casey as to what each of these ports are, so some best guesses are being made. And I think the best guesses do make sense,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey the proximity of the USB-C ports notwithstanding. But what if the four USB-C ports are actually

⏹️ ▶️ Casey like a vent, and the two USB-A ports are where USB-C is going? So there’s only two USB-C

⏹️ ▶️ Casey ports, and there is a vent between the power and the two USB-C ports.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, so if you look at the current M1 Mac Mini, it does have

⏹️ ▶️ Marco two USB-As, HDMI, Ethernet, and it has two USB-C ports.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco If you also then look at the MacBook Pros that were just released, they have

⏹️ ▶️ Marco three USB-C ports. And it seems like one of the reasons why, like from

⏹️ ▶️ Marco some of the visualizations of the chip diagrams and everything, it seems like there might not be

⏹️ ▶️ Marco enough Thunderbolt controllers or bandwidth in the chip to

⏹️ ▶️ Marco supply four independent Thunderbolt 4 ports. So I’m

⏹️ ▶️ Marco guessing the next Mac mini, unless it’s based on the Duo chip, which I’m with

⏹️ ▶️ Marco John, I don’t think it would be for lots of reasons. But unless it’s based on the Duo chip, I

⏹️ ▶️ Marco don’t think anything based on the M1 Pro or M1 Max

⏹️ ▶️ Marco is going to have four Thunderbolt 4 ports and two USB ports. That

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to me, that’s wishful thinking, I think. And also, there’s so much about this that seems

⏹️ ▶️ Marco weird. So the Mac Mini, for all of its

⏹️ ▶️ Marco bad history of being neglected and everything, when Apple updated it in, what was

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it, 2018, when they brought, they kind of reinvigorated it with that event in Brooklyn, right? Wasn’t

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that the Mac Mini?

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I thought that was the Mac Book Air.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco It was

⏹️ ▶️ Marco both. It was, yeah, pretty sure it was the same event. So yeah, it was like October 2018 or whatever. Yeah, we were there. You

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey and I were there. Yeah,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that’s why it sticks out of my mind. Anyway, so I’m pretty sure there was a Mac mini there. And that was like

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the big revival of the Mac mini, right? And one of the things that was clear at

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that time was Apple had finally realized

⏹️ ▶️ Marco what the Mac mini was and what it wasn’t anymore, if ever.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And one of the things that the Mac mini wasn’t anymore was an alternative

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to an iMac that most people should buy as a desktop. They realize instead

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that what the Mac Mini had been being used for for a long time and what its natural

⏹️ ▶️ Marco role in the modern Apple product line is, is not a desktop most

⏹️ ▶️ Marco people should buy to put on a desk, but some kind of utility Mac that you need for

⏹️ ▶️ Marco some reason that’s not covered by the iMac or MacBook Pro lines. So whether you’re

⏹️ ▶️ Marco running something headless somewhere in a data center or in a closet or as a file server in your office or

⏹️ ▶️ Marco something, or whether you’re running a media center or some kind of specialized role,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco maybe like a build farm, stuff like that, render farms, that’s what the Mac Mini is

⏹️ ▶️ Marco for. It is not considered an iMac alternative for

⏹️ ▶️ Marco most people. Once Apple realized that in 2018, and when they launched it in 2018, like with

⏹️ ▶️ Marco this new direction, they loaded it up with ports, they maximized utility,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco they stopped trying to make it a very low-end product and just made it like a nice mid-range

⏹️ ▶️ Marco product that had actually some pretty high CPU options if you wanted to spec them up. They

⏹️ ▶️ Marco went all in on the utility, it’s almost like a pro product where they

⏹️ ▶️ Marco don’t seem to expect most consumers to want to buy this computer. And so

⏹️ ▶️ Marco if they still see it that way, which I hope they do because I think it has been much more successful that way

⏹️ ▶️ Marco ever since they’ve kind of like redirected it like that. If they still see it that way, it makes

⏹️ ▶️ Marco very little sense to me to make compromises to make it more

⏹️ ▶️ Marco like the new thin iMac when the product is not really being

⏹️ ▶️ Marco used in a way that would reward or even want those compromises. So one of those compromises for me is

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the external power supply. I hope the Mac mini doesn’t have an external power supply. I don’t think

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that’s a very good idea for the product and no one cares about making it a little bit smaller. No one

⏹️ ▶️ Marco is looking at the current Mac Mini and saying, well, I would buy this, but it’s too big.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Like, no one, that’s not a decision that anybody makes about that product. People who buy the Mac

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Mini buy it for some kind of utility that is not covered by the other Macs. And

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s already pretty small. It could be made a little smaller, but that’s not

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a very important thing. And if the way you make it smaller is by pushing the power supply

⏹️ ▶️ Marco outside of the case, well, that’s kind of a cheap, crappy way to make it smaller because then we have a big power brick

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to put somewhere. So like that’s outsourcing the problem to the exterior of the case, basically

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a dongle, right? And it makes sense kind of maybe with the new iMac

⏹️ ▶️ Marco because of the ultra thin, yeah, yeah, whatever. It’s very impressive. I’m very proud of them. I’m very happy that everyone’s happy about it. But

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it doesn’t make sense for this product where this product is often put in tight spaces or

⏹️ ▶️ Marco places where you’re putting a lot of them together for some reason. We’re having an external power supply. It’s a big pain in the butt in that kind of context.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco So I hope they’re not doing that. And similarly, the idea of trying to make

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it as thin as possible, similar to the new iMacs, I don’t see why that would make sense either.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Again, that’s not being demanded by the customers of this product. And if it’s going to have an ethernet

⏹️ ▶️ Marco jack in it, which I think A, it should for utility purposes,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco but B, if that’s gonna be in there, then it’s gonna be a certain minimum thickness to fit the Ethernet jack,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and if you can fit that, you can probably fit a power supply in there. And if you can’t, you should redesign the case so you

⏹️ ▶️ Marco can, because external power supplies suck for Mac Minis. That’s a terrible idea, please don’t do that. So, this

⏹️ ▶️ Marco is one of the many reasons why I assume most of what we’ve heard has been wrong.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I also think it’s interesting that the MacBook Pro event came and went, and there was

⏹️ ▶️ Marco no Mac Mini. There still remain, like, more products in the lineup, the Mac

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Mini and the Big iMac, that we expect to probably have M1 Pro and Max chips in them.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco So maybe these rumors that came out almost a year ago,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco maybe these were based on previous concepts that they decided not to go with. Who knows?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s probably just wrong. That’s the most likely scenario here. These are probably just wrong. And

⏹️ ▶️ Marco frankly, I hope they’re wrong because if they go in this direction with this product of

⏹️ ▶️ Marco trying to make it as tiny as possible at the expense of utility and the way it’s actually used,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think that is a reversion to

⏹️ ▶️ Marco some bad Ivy-in times that they seem to have thankfully

⏹️ ▶️ Marco moved away from. Like they seem to have seen the error in their ways with some of their priorities being out

⏹️ ▶️ Marco of whack, and they’re now much better at making products that actually fit the customers

⏹️ ▶️ Marco who buy them and fit their needs. And so to make the Mac mini fit people’s needs

⏹️ ▶️ Marco worse, I don’t think is the right move. And because they’ve had such a good record of that recently,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that also makes it seem less plausible that they would do it. Like I have a hard time believing that they

⏹️ ▶️ Marco would make decisions about this product that would make it worse for its users at this point, which is great. I trust them to finally

⏹️ ▶️ Marco be doing things well on a reliable, regular basis. And this

⏹️ ▶️ Marco concept would not be doing things as well as it could.

⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, I know there’s a couple of big question marks there because we don’t, I know what you’re saying, like, oh, the Mac

⏹️ ▶️ John mini is kind of like a pro product now, but it’s not, it hasn’t really been, you’re right that it’s

⏹️ ▶️ John no longer like, oh, this is a cheap bargain basement thing, and you’re right that they leaned into utility, but it’s always been in kind of this middle

⏹️ ▶️ John space where they haven’t really, like they never made a Mac mini with a Z on it, right? So it’s

⏹️ ▶️ John not, you know, it’s not, it’s not as pro, like the MacBook Pros were easier. There’s pro right

⏹️ ▶️ John in the name, they made them for pros so clearly they made them, you know, they didn’t try to make

⏹️ ▶️ John them as thin as possible, they put a bunch of ports in them, whatever. The Mac mini has always kind of been there since 2018

⏹️ ▶️ John with all those ports in the back and everything, but it hasn’t been the type of thing where they try to crank up the specs to

⏹️ ▶️ John the degree they did on the MacBook Pros. One thing that does fit with that sort of utilitarian

⏹️ ▶️ John almost pro kind of rumor is the fact that this has all these ports. And you mentioned like four

⏹️ ▶️ John USB-C and everything. On the MacBook Pros, the reason they have the number of ports to

⏹️ ▶️ John do is they want each one of them to have the full bandwidth of Thunderbolt 4 or whatever, right?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Oh, and by the way, for the record, the current Intel Mac mini does have exactly these

⏹️ ▶️ Marco ports. Like it actually, it does have four USB-C and two USB-A and HDMI and ethernet.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s only the M1 mini that drops it down to two USB-C for bandwidth

⏹️ ▶️ Marco reasons. But again, I think because we didn’t get four USB-C on the new MacBook Pros, I think

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that would be unlikely to see that configuration in a computer that’s probably using the exact same chips

⏹️ ▶️ Marco as it.

⏹️ ▶️ John Well, but the reason I think it fits to have four of them, not necessarily a misarrangement, is because on the Mac mini, it’s

⏹️ ▶️ John definitely a Mac mini-ish thing to do to say, well, in the case of the Mac mini, it’s okay

⏹️ ▶️ John for two of those ports to share a single Thunderbolt bus, like they’re

⏹️ ▶️ John sharing the 40 gigabits between the last two ports, you know what I mean? Like, you can add USB-C ports

⏹️ ▶️ John as much, like plain old USB-C ports as much as you want, you’re just stealing bandwidth from the Thunderbolt one. So you can’t,

⏹️ ▶️ John you know, those aren’t all 40 gigabits per second, which is fine for a Mac mini, having that trade-off

⏹️ ▶️ John of saying, In exchange for not having full bandwidth in every one of these ports, I’ll have to maybe know

⏹️ ▶️ John which ones are full bandwidth, but I get more places to plug stuff in. I just don’t think the physical

⏹️ ▶️ John arrangement makes that much sense. And on the physical specs here, with Casey’s idea that those could be vents,

⏹️ ▶️ John right? The reason that’s interesting is because if you look at the supposed cooling design, according

⏹️ ▶️ John to these renders and these specs, the supposed cooling doesn’t make that

⏹️ ▶️ John much sense either. It’s got like, it’s got these long ski feet, which are like on the bottom of the iMac, the 24

⏹️ ▶️ John inch iMac has these ski feet on the bottom of it, right? Like long strips of rubber instead of little dots of

⏹️ ▶️ John rubber on the corners. Um, and then it’s got a, a, a downward facing vent in the bottom.

⏹️ ▶️ John And then I think they’re trying to say that like around the top, there would be an opening all

⏹️ ▶️ John around the top edge for intake and then it would exhaust out the bottom. But in general you don’t want to

⏹️ ▶️ John exhaust hot air at the bottom of anything. You really want to exhaust hot air out the

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey top

⏹️ ▶️ John or maybe the back. But I don’t, What I’m saying is I don’t understand how this machine

⏹️ ▶️ John cools itself according to these rendered right and and in in that world those those

⏹️ ▶️ John those USB supports they should be a vent because it would be more efficient to eject the hot air from that than it would be

⏹️ ▶️ John to To blow the hot air out this little skinny downward facing thing like

⏹️ ▶️ John just And it was like thinking of power bricks, by the way I was thinking of like having this in an entertainment center

⏹️ ▶️ John Like if this is like your you know, I connect this Mac mini to my TV Which is the thing a lot of hobbyists do with their Mac minis It fits

⏹️ ▶️ John into an entertainment center. And I thought of the back of my TV, the giant rat’s nest of wires back

⏹️ ▶️ John there, and there are way too many power bricks back there.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco So

⏹️ ▶️ John the Mac mini would fit right in with its stupid, annoying power brick alongside all the other stupid, annoying power bricks

⏹️ ▶️ John that are back there. And then, you know, trying to eject hot air into your little entertainment center from this tiny little port, like,

⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t understand this machine. But like I said, the rumors that I’ve been seeing

⏹️ ▶️ John have not been in the vein of like, oh, that was totally wrong, or the new Mac mini is totally different. But on the

⏹️ ▶️ John other hand, we haven’t actually seen this machine released either to Marco’s point. So maybe this was once the plan and is it now?

⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t know. It’s but but it is confusing. Like I don’t like I don’t think they’ll ever be a Mac mini

⏹️ ▶️ John pro because that machine doesn’t make sense to me. So I still

⏹️ ▶️ John think them making it lower to the desk like flatter is a reasonable

⏹️ ▶️ John is is a thing that I wouldn’t be surprised if they did. Right. because it’s kind of like,

⏹️ ▶️ John what do we, what bonus do we, like the M1 Mac Mini, the one that’s out now, like

⏹️ ▶️ John to the point in case people want to bring this up, like they don’t need to transition the Mac Mini to ARM. They already did that. Yes, they did. It’s got a plain

⏹️ ▶️ John old M1 in it, right? But it is the type of, that was the conversion where they essentially took the existing

⏹️ ▶️ John Mac Mini, ripped out its guts, put in way smaller guts, and left a lot of empty space inside there.

⏹️ ▶️ John Kind of like they did with the MacBook Air, right? What we’re looking at here is like the 24 inch iMac or the new

⏹️ ▶️ John MacBook Pro version. It’s like, okay, but what if we designed a Mac mini knowing ahead of time we have these

⏹️ ▶️ John amazing ARM chips? What would that look like? And I’m not sure

⏹️ ▶️ John what Apple’s, we don’t have any evidence of Apple’s thinking for its desktop computers. We have evidence

⏹️ ▶️ John when they make their Pro laptops that they’re gonna make all the right decisions. And we’ve talked about that before, right? But when they decide

⏹️ ▶️ John to redesign the iMac, they made very different decisions, the smaller iMac. They made very

⏹️ ▶️ John different decisions, right? So when they redesigned the Mac mini, if they redesigned the Mac mini with ARM chips in

⏹️ ▶️ John mind, do they take it in a MacBook Pro direction? Or do they take it in a 24 inch iMac

⏹️ ▶️ John direction? And it’s not clear to me, given the history

⏹️ ▶️ John since 2018 of the Mac mini, which direction is more likely, because

⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t see them bringing in the MacBook Pro direction, right? To say, this is a pro machine, we got to do

⏹️ ▶️ John the pro stuff, and we got to, you know, like really beef this thing up and put an SD card slot back

⏹️ ▶️ John in there and do all like, I don’t see them doing that because it’s not, it’s not a pro machine as

⏹️ ▶️ John from Apple’s stance, but it’s also not, to Margo’s earlier point, a consumer

⏹️ ▶️ John machine. It’s not like, hey, everybody loves it. They come in fun colors. It is not a mass market consumer

⏹️ ▶️ John machine. I mean, not even to the degree of the iMac is. I mean, the mass market machines are laptops. Already

⏹️ ▶️ John when you’re talking about a desktop, you’re narrowing your focus to this tiny sliver of the population, right? And

⏹️ ▶️ John even within the realm of desktops, I just, I don’t know

⏹️ ▶️ John where the Mac Mini should go. I guess the real solution that Apple would do is, what if we just don’t update it for two years?

⏹️ ▶️ John And then whatever we release, you’ll be so happy to have any update at all that you won’t be able to complain

⏹️ ▶️ John about this stuff. But right now we’re still hungry for new machines and we believe that, the reason we

⏹️ ▶️ John believe it is, we see the MacBook Pros with the M1 Pro and the M1 Max, and we say those CPUs would work

⏹️ ▶️ John great in a Mac Mini. Release one with those in it. But then all we’ve got to look at out

⏹️ ▶️ John of these weird renders of this computer that we don’t understand. So hopefully this will be resolved eventually,

⏹️ ▶️ John but I think it’s an interesting mystery about the Mac lineup. What will Apple

⏹️ ▶️ John do with the Mac mini? And then the larger mystery, what will Apple do with a desktop, with a pro desktop? We have

⏹️ ▶️ John no evidence of that. We’re kind of like where we were before the new Mac Pros came out. We didn’t know for sure what Apple would do.

⏹️ ▶️ John What does a pro computer with an ARM chip in it look like? And now we know that answer on a laptop and it’s great.

⏹️ ▶️ John We still don’t know the answer to the desktop. We hope it’s great. we hope what we essentially see is, oh, the big iMac came out

⏹️ ▶️ John and it is essentially just as great an iMac as the new MacBook Pros are at doing their job.

⏹️ ▶️ John But the Mac mini, I don’t have a good read on where that’s going.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Can I give you one more stupid theory?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Absolutely. That’s what our show is for.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey What if the Mac mini is so thin because it’s being passively cooled? Like the whole

⏹️ ▶️ Casey shell is one big heat sink.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco That’s an interesting theory, but I don’t think that product

⏹️ ▶️ Marco needs

⏹️ ▶️ John that. Where are the antennas though? I think the top has to be not metal and that’s bad for

⏹️ ▶️ John dispersing heat.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Oh, fair enough.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Also, if it’s gonna have an M1 Pro and Max in it,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco we haven’t seen any of those be passively cooled. We’ve only seen the M1 be passively cooled and even the M1 Mac Mini

⏹️ ▶️ Marco has a fan. So I think it’s unlikely.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco We are sponsored this week by Linode, my favorite place to run servers.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I love running servers at Linode. You know, I run a lot of servers for various, you know, apps that I

⏹️ ▶️ Marco do, you know, projects I have. Most of most of it is overcast and I have all servers there. When you

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⏹️ ▶️ Marco your resource levels and all that. Linode is by far my favorite host to do that with.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’ve been with them for a long time now, almost a decade. Because first of all, it started out with value.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco You know, I run a lot of servers there. Value is pretty important when you’re on a lot of servers. Even if you just run one, it’s pretty important.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco So Linode has an amazing value. They’ve been the best value in the business the entire time I’ve been with them. I always

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#askatp: Canon, BMW, or Nintendo?

⏹️ ▶️ Casey All right, let’s do some Ask ATP. And let’s start with Ryan who writes, if Apple acquired and successfully integrated

⏹️ ▶️ Casey the best of Apple and the best of one of the following companies, Canon for their big camera optics and computational photography,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey BMW for perhaps the Apple Car, or Nintendo games on Apple Silicon, which would you be most

⏹️ ▶️ Casey excited about? I’m really having a hard time. This is such

⏹️ ▶️ Casey a claim chowder, but I’m really having a hard time getting excited about the Apple Car. I think I saw a post somewhere about

⏹️ ▶️ Casey how another one of their executives have left to go somewhere else I’m having a hard

⏹️ ▶️ Casey time finding myself getting excited about an Apple car. I like Nintendo

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I’ve always liked Nintendo and I like the idea of getting Apple into gaming But I really

⏹️ ▶️ Casey think that Apple and Canon or equivalent, you know, if not Canon someone else

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Just bringing the best of both worlds together would make me personally the most excited like to really see

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Apple go even further in the deep end with incredible optics, I think would be super

⏹️ ▶️ Casey cool. But Marco, where do you land on this?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco All right, so Nintendo, but you know, having games on Apple Silicon, that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to me, I think I would rule that out because as awesome as

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the Apple Silicon hardware capabilities are, like you know, the iPad and the iPhone are gaming machines

⏹️ ▶️ Marco in a certain way that we’ve talked about, but But, Nintendo quality games

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and game systems, they tend to require dedicated game hardware. And

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I don’t see Apple really doing a good job at making that or running it.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Even if, now see, this question leaves a lot of room by saying if Apple acquired and successfully

⏹️ ▶️ Marco integrated the best of these companies. And that’s a very

⏹️ ▶️ Marco interesting question. But I would say Nintendo, I’m less excited about.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco BMW with the idea of becoming a car company, I’m with you. I don’t

⏹️ ▶️ Marco see the point of the car project. There was actually a really good discussion about this on the talk show this week with Gruber

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and Jim Dalrymple. That if you think about the kinds of things Apple

⏹️ ▶️ Marco is good at and cares a lot about, most of that is not the car business.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Like the things that you need to succeed in the car business and the kind of success you would get in

⏹️ ▶️ Marco an ideal scenario is really not Apple’s wheelhouse

⏹️ ▶️ Marco or even something that Apple would seem to want. So we have enough

⏹️ ▶️ Marco information to suggest that the car project is almost certainly real.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco What form it is now or has taken in the past is certainly up for debate and there’s a lot of changes that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco seem to be going on over time. But for the most part, we have a pretty clear picture that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco there is a large car project going on at Apple and has been for some

⏹️ ▶️ Marco time. I do not understand why. I really honestly don’t.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I don’t think it’s something that they can make. I don’t think it’s something they should make. And

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I certainly don’t think it’s something that is worth taking talent away from their other efforts.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And it seems like it has done a lot of that. So I frankly,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think it will be interesting to look back on this era of Tim Cook’s leadership and to see like, was

⏹️ ▶️ Marco this a good bet or not? Because it’s a big bet and it’s a big project that’s taken a lot

⏹️ ▶️ Marco of resources and churning through a lot of people. And is that a good use of the company’s resources?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Is that a direction you even want to go? Frankly, I don’t see it. But

⏹️ ▶️ Marco anyway, so I wouldn’t want them to become a car company in any way. I still think they shouldn’t.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And the fact that they have gone so far, I think they should shut it down and count their losses and move

⏹️ ▶️ Marco on. That leaves Canon and the idea of integrating big camera

⏹️ ▶️ Marco optics. That I think is by far the most

⏹️ ▶️ Marco likely to succeed, the most likely to be useful, and the most valuable thing they could

⏹️ ▶️ Marco do. Because again, what drives iPhone upgrades? Cameras

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and broken screens and dead batteries. but

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John mostly cameras,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco let’s be honest. That’s why most people upgrade their phones. Either their previous phone has

⏹️ ▶️ Marco died or has gotten so old that they can’t use it anymore, or, and or, they upgrade to get the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco new cool camera. And so anything that can push Apple’s phone camera

⏹️ ▶️ Marco tech forward is very valuable to Apple and very useful

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to all of us consumers, most of whom are only using our phones as our only cameras now.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Like we don’t usually use big cameras anymore as consumers, like phones are by far dominant. So

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that would benefit all of their customers. And it would be

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a thing that would work very well with what they already do, what they’re already good at. And

⏹️ ▶️ Marco depending on what, you know, integration of Canon would entail, does that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco mean Apple would start making bigger cameras? That would be interesting. I’ve talked about before, how I

⏹️ ▶️ Marco would never expect that to happen, but I would love that. You know, like what can Apple do with larger sensors, with larger

⏹️ ▶️ Marco optics and a larger device. That would be awesome. But yeah, that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think is by far the clear choice here is make Apple better

⏹️ ▶️ Marco at cameras before you make them better at games or cars.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey John?

⏹️ ▶️ John So Nintendo, I know the question says successfully integrate the best of or whatever.

⏹️ ▶️ John Nintendo, I would never want Apple to get near Nintendo because they would

⏹️ ▶️ John ruin it, right?

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco Even if they integrated. Is

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it like when Spotify integrates a podcast?

⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, so if Apple successfully integrated the best

⏹️ ▶️ John of Nintendo, it would mean that Apple suddenly learned how to make innovative gaming hardware and good

⏹️ ▶️ John gaming software. But what’s missing from that is, because we’re just assuming the success of

⏹️ ▶️ John the scenario in the questionnaire, what’s missing is that that also means that Nintendo would no longer exist

⏹️ ▶️ John as an independent company outside of Apple’s influence. So even though Apple absorbed the best of it,

⏹️ ▶️ John and you know, oh, you’d still get Nintendo quality games. They just come from Apple now. Nintendo as

⏹️ ▶️ John an independent entity would no longer exist and therefore it wouldn’t be able to do things like make the Wii because that’s

⏹️ ▶️ John just not something that Apple would do because it’s such a weird Nintendo-y thing, a standard definition console with motion

⏹️ ▶️ John control when everyone else is doing HD. What a stupid idea that’s gonna be an incredible failure, right? And

⏹️ ▶️ John you know, then you get virtual boys mixed in there too. But like Nintendo as an independent

⏹️ ▶️ John company is much greater than just the best of Nintendo. I don’t want the best

⏹️ ▶️ John of Nintendo to be absorbed by a bigger company that makes cars and computers, right? I want Nintendo to

⏹️ ▶️ John continue to exist as an independent company that does weird Nintendo things. So no, don’t like that

⏹️ ▶️ John one. BMW, we’ve talked about this before, like, and Marcus said the same thing,

⏹️ ▶️ John like, Apple does have a tiny bit of overlap with a company like BMW in that Apple

⏹️ ▶️ John is good at manufacturing things and is very careful about it, but manufacturing the things that Apple manufactures with

⏹️ ▶️ John partners is very different than manufacturing things that BMW manufactures with partners.

⏹️ ▶️ John It’s just different scales. And in terms of repairability and reliability, it’s

⏹️ ▶️ John whole different worlds of a car versus a delicate little device that you try to seal

⏹️ ▶️ John against dust and water, but that’s about it. So I don’t think there’s too

⏹️ ▶️ John many synergies there. The Apple car thing, the latest rumor, you just mentioned this now, like the latest

⏹️ ▶️ John rumor is like, oh, Apple’s really heavily concentrating on full self-driving, right?

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey It’s kind of,

⏹️ ▶️ John it’s not quite the same as the AR VR stuff because even

⏹️ ▶️ John though no one has really solved that problem, I think you can see a path from current technology

⏹️ ▶️ John of like, oh, these big heavy goggles. You can just extrapolate from existing tech and say, okay,

⏹️ ▶️ John well, but that tech will get lighter and the resolution will go up and the battery life will get better because

⏹️ ▶️ John that’s just the path. like these are not mysterious technologies. It’s happened. Look at how much better

⏹️ ▶️ John our screens are on our laptops. Look how much thinner they are. Look how much brighter they are. Look how much higher the refresh is. Look how

⏹️ ▶️ John much lower power and higher performance the CPUs are. Like all those same effects will slowly

⏹️ ▶️ John bring AR, VR things from where they are now as gigantic ski goggly

⏹️ ▶️ John things to be smaller and smaller, right? So even though that problem hasn’t been solved, as we’ve mentioned in past shows, we haven’t

⏹️ ▶️ John gotten to the threshold where it’s a consumer product that everyone gets and is everyone’s comfortable with, even it’s still a weird

⏹️ ▶️ John thing that only weird techie people use, right? We can see a path to that. Right now,

⏹️ ▶️ John nobody can see a path to human level driving ability in computers. And so

⏹️ ▶️ John it’s great that Apple wants to sink some of its billions of dollars into that, but it is

⏹️ ▶️ John so much less likely to happen in any timeframe that anyone cares about than the AR VR

⏹️ ▶️ John stuff. The AR VR stuff is Apple should be working on. Everyone’s working on it for a reason. Apple should be working on it. Apple

⏹️ ▶️ John is making good progress. That’s a good use of Apple’s money, even though it still hasn’t produced any products other

⏹️ ▶️ John than, you know, LiDAR sensors and AR kit and all that other stuff, right? The car

⏹️ ▶️ John though, you can make a good car. I think that’s a reasonable thing for Apple to do. But if your car

⏹️ ▶️ John project is now like, you know, human level self-driving or bust,

⏹️ ▶️ John I’m voting for bust.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco But my money’s on bust

⏹️ ▶️ John because no one’s done it. And there’s not even a path to it. No one has any idea. It’s just like, people think like, well,

⏹️ ▶️ John we got like 50% of the way there. So like, if we just extrapolate from current trends, we’ll

⏹️ ▶️ John do it. And it’s the same type of thing of like in the 50s where people like, well, look at how smart a computer is today

⏹️ ▶️ John in 1950. And it can answer these questions. It’s almost like a little human. I can type in the

⏹️ ▶️ John thing and it tells me a question. If I just extrapolate by 1982, the computers will

⏹️ ▶️ John be smarter than all the humans combined. And you know, there’s just, it’s the story of AI. That they

⏹️ ▶️ John always just push that farther and farther out because you get to 1982 and it’s like, well, actually, this is a harder problem than we thought, and

⏹️ ▶️ John computers are still pretty dumb. But by the year 2000, computers will be so smart that humans won’t have

⏹️ ▶️ John to do any work, and they’ll solve all our problems. Well, actually, the year 2000, they’re still pretty dumb, but you can get music for free on

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco the

⏹️ ▶️ John internet. And then, like, it just, it keeps getting farther out, because we don’t understand the problem space, right?

⏹️ ▶️ John I think that is true of driving as well. The problem space of driving, in the general case, is very similar

⏹️ ▶️ John to the problem space of, you know, human level, general human level intelligence. We like to think it’s not, but it’s like, you don’t

⏹️ ▶️ John need to be as smart as a human to drive. You just need to know where the road is and stay on it. Isn’t that easy?

⏹️ ▶️ John You can get real close, but it’s that last little bit that makes all the difference. And so

⏹️ ▶️ John again, this is just based on rumors.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey If the rumor is that Apple’s saying, yeah,

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco if the

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey rumor

⏹️ ▶️ John is true that Apple says is really, because the rumor is like Apple basically wants to sell

⏹️ ▶️ John you a car without a steering wheel, right? Which is, that’s the physical incarnation of what I’m describing here, which is like, it doesn’t

⏹️ ▶️ John even have a steering wheel. Why would it have a steering wheel? You’re never gonna drive it. It doesn’t need you to drive it. It drives itself.

⏹️ ▶️ John No steering wheel, no pedals. That’s the goal. And if that’s the goal, Apple, you are not gonna ship.

⏹️ ▶️ John Cause no one’s done that. And you don’t know how to do it because nobody knows how to do it. And it’s not directly,

⏹️ ▶️ John we can’t get directly there from where we are now. There is a leap that we have not yet made. Maybe

⏹️ ▶️ John Apple has made it and they’ll wow us all and say, guess what? Here’s a car with no steering wheel and you never need it and blah, blah, blah, right?

⏹️ ▶️ John Or maybe they’ll sell that car, but it can only drive around Cupertino because they’ve 3D mapped every inch of the roads and it never has weather,

⏹️ ▶️ John right? I don’t know. But if that rumor is true, it makes no sense. And it makes me more pessimistic

⏹️ ▶️ John about the car project. If Apple wants to make a car, I think the synergy between BMW

⏹️ ▶️ John and Apple, this BMW for all its faults, knows way more about making cars than Apple does. If

⏹️ ▶️ John Apple just wanted to make a car, just a plain old car that human beings drive and has driver assist functionality like a car,

⏹️ ▶️ John as we currently understand them, BMW would be a good partnership. And I think they could make a better car

⏹️ ▶️ John than Apple on its own, because Apple on its own is not going to make as good a car as Apple plus

⏹️ ▶️ John the integration of the best of BMW would make. But the rumors are that Apple doesn’t want to make a car. They want to make a fantasy

⏹️ ▶️ John pod with no steering wheel and that’s doesn’t exist. So skip BMW.

⏹️ ▶️ John Finally, we land on the camera thing with Canon. And

⏹️ ▶️ John what this made me think of is there is actually the reverse synergy.

⏹️ ▶️ John So Sony is a company that makes camera sensors and their own, they may also make big, you know, interchangeable

⏹️ ▶️ John lens cameras and small point and shoot cameras. they make a lot of stuff, right? Sony also makes smartphones,

⏹️ ▶️ John Android smartphones. Sony actually made a smartphone

⏹️ ▶️ John that integrates the best of a smartphone company with the best of its own cameras. They took

⏹️ ▶️ John a one inch camera from their own RX100 VII, like

⏹️ ▶️ John point and shoot camera, or one inch sensor rather, a one inch sensor from their own camera and shoved

⏹️ ▶️ John it inside a smartphone, right? So they basically took like, Oh, imagine if Sony, the camera company,

⏹️ ▶️ John merged with Sony, the smartphone company, what could they make? They did it. They just literally took

⏹️ ▶️ John a sensor from one of their quote unquote real cameras and put it in a phone. And if you look

⏹️ ▶️ John at the phone interface, suddenly when you go to take a picture, it looks like the back of a Sony camera. Like they

⏹️ ▶️ John put the software, like the software that you see on the back of your Sony camera, like when you’re taking a picture and how it,

⏹️ ▶️ John that’s there. Their autofocus technology that’s in their cameras that finds what it wants to focus on in the frame

⏹️ ▶️ John and grabs it. when you use this smartphone, it looks like you’re using a really,

⏹️ ▶️ John really, really flat Sony point and shoot camera. And it’s literally got the same sensor from one of

⏹️ ▶️ John their point and shoot cameras. So I think it’s a fascinating example of like, how could you

⏹️ ▶️ John bring, you know, what would it look like if Canon and Apple combined or if Sony and Apple

⏹️ ▶️ John combined? Like, could they take the best of their cameras, you know, their big

⏹️ ▶️ John sensors, their big lenses, maybe even also like, you know, again, I would say the Sony autofocus

⏹️ ▶️ John system better than what’s available in iPhones, right? It’s better, especially with moving subjects and everything,

⏹️ ▶️ John just because the sensors are bigger too, but it’s better at finding what you want to focus on and grabbing

⏹️ ▶️ John onto it and staying, keeping that focus with lots of photos, way better than the iPhone. And the interface to

⏹️ ▶️ John doing so, the UI for how you do that with, you know, in a situation where you’re trying to take a picture

⏹️ ▶️ John of, you know, someone speeding by in a race car or like kids running or whatever, the

⏹️ ▶️ John interface for doing that, the physical interface and the onscreen UI interface for doing that on Sony

⏹️ ▶️ John cameras is better than it is on iPhones. It should be, because it’s a whole dedicated device just for that purpose, right? This

⏹️ ▶️ John smartphone, which is called the Xperia Pro-I, by the way, I’ll put a link in the show notes,

⏹️ ▶️ John takes the Sony camera interface and puts it on a smartphone. So

⏹️ ▶️ John I think, I agree with all three of you, that if Apple could combine itself with the best of some

⏹️ ▶️ John big camera company, they would have, they could have a better camera experience on their

⏹️ ▶️ John phones. Setting aside like making Apple interchangeable lens cameras, which I think would be awesome, right?

⏹️ ▶️ John But like what I’m saying is there is room for Apple to learn from these companies because

⏹️ ▶️ John these camera companies products do lots of things better than Apple’s phones do in terms

⏹️ ▶️ John of the UI and of course, in terms of the capability. Would Apple put a one inch sensor inside an iPhone? Probably not,

⏹️ ▶️ John like this is an extreme example. You’re really sacrificing a lot of internal space for this. You’re sacrificing battery, like,

⏹️ ▶️ John and by the way, this phone is $1,800. Like, you know, it’s a strange product, but

⏹️ ▶️ John it is weird. And by the way, there’s a bunch of YouTube reviews of this too, you should take a look at it. If you are familiar with Sony cameras,

⏹️ ▶️ John it seems like a fantasy mock-up that somebody made of like, imagine a Sony camera, but it’s a smartphone.

⏹️ ▶️ John And it’s both, because it’s just Android, you know, it’s like an Android phone, but then you put it into camera mode, it’s even

⏹️ ▶️ John got like a mechanical aperture on it. Like it really is like, you know, an RX100 squished really, really flat,

⏹️ ▶️ John and also it’s a smartphone. Fascinating product, but yeah. So I guess unanimous, Apple should

⏹️ ▶️ John not buy, not merge with, but integrate the best of one of these companies

⏹️ ▶️ John and it is some camera company.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I dig it.

#askatp: Backups vs. cloud services

⏹️ ▶️ Casey All right, Joe Athman writes, between services like online photo libraries, Google Docs, iCloud Drive, Dropbox,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and Git, I’m having a hard time thinking of any circumstance where I’d utilize my backups from Time Machine or some other online

⏹️ ▶️ Casey backup place. Am I wasting my time with these additional backups? No, you’re not.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey But you make a good point. As I’ve said to you many times, I do think of my computer, my laptop,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey previously when I was in a two-computer world, I did think of my laptop as basically ephemeral. Now that’s

⏹️ ▶️ Casey less so since I’m down to a one-computer life, But when I was taking things

⏹️ ▶️ Casey off of my iMac pro and moving them onto my MacBook pro, almost everything

⏹️ ▶️ Casey was either stuff that I just hadn’t processed, like movies or not movies as in like,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey you know, falling off the back of a truck, but like things I’ve downloaded that I need to file away or something

⏹️ ▶️ Casey like that. Or I don’t know, audio concerts that I’ve downloaded from,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey you know, from play from artists that allow you to do that sort of thing. I, all these sorts of things that I just was too

⏹️ ▶️ Casey lazy to file away. but in terms of like the stuff that actually mattered, like I, I don’t have like a huge repository

⏹️ ▶️ Casey of office documents anymore. Like I used to, uh, all of my code is in get like Joe

⏹️ ▶️ Casey said. So there was not that much of like important stuff

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that didn’t exist in 13 other places. So I do totally get Joe’s point, but

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I am of the opinion that the more backups you have, the better off you are. Since Marco went first last time,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey let’s start with John. I presume you’re going to be on the backup everything 18 ways train.

⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, like,

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey I just

⏹️ ▶️ John never people come from

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey like,

⏹️ ▶️ John well, like everything’s already in the cloud. What I need to have the backup. Well, so the first and most obvious thing is having

⏹️ ▶️ John a single backup that’s on somebody else’s computer is not sufficient for backup, right? It’s

⏹️ ▶️ John you do have one backup, and it’s a cloud backup. And by the way, it is a distributed cloud backup distributed across

⏹️ ▶️ John multiple companies, which in some ways is good, but some ways is very bad. But But bottom line is just having

⏹️ ▶️ John cloud backup is your only backup is not sufficient, because what happens then if you want to get your stuff

⏹️ ▶️ John back? And it turns out you’ve corrupted it in that backup or that company goes out of business or whoops,

⏹️ ▶️ John you tried to get it back from that company, but you couldn’t get it back because there was some kind of error on their side. Oh, well, some kind of error

⏹️ ▶️ John in your cloud drive. Sorry, there’s nothing we can do about it. Right. Do not just rely on a single backup

⏹️ ▶️ John for your backup. Well, no matter what the backup is, if it’s a cloud backup, if it’s a local backup or whatever, just having one of them is not enough.

⏹️ ▶️ John And you want the more sort of diversity in your backup scheme, different companies, different

⏹️ ▶️ John media, different locations, that’s what you want to have, right? So that’s the

⏹️ ▶️ John first important role of having something besides a cloud backup is A, it’s a second backup, and B, it’s a different

⏹️ ▶️ John kind of backup, right? But the second thing is you talk about wasting your time. You want to see wasting your time,

⏹️ ▶️ John try, oh, you know, my computer broke and I need to quote unquote

⏹️ ▶️ John restore for my backup. That’s going to be a waste of your time because trying to get back up

⏹️ ▶️ John to like where I was before everything went wrong, before I spilled the liquid into my computer or whatever.

⏹️ ▶️ John Have fun pulling everything down from all those cloud services and redoing all your settings. There’s tons more

⏹️ ▶️ John sort of data that you put into your computer that is not represented in iCloud Drive,

⏹️ ▶️ John Dropbox, Git. This is mostly Apple’s fault because Apple could do a way better

⏹️ ▶️ John job of essentially iCloud backup for Macs, right? But they don’t do that. On the phones, they do. On the phone, you can throw your phone into

⏹️ ▶️ John the ocean. And if you have a recent iCloud backup, you can eventually be up and running essentially right where you left off as of that last backup. You can’t

⏹️ ▶️ John do that with a Mac. Apple doesn’t have that feature. They should, but they don’t. So what that means is if you don’t wanna

⏹️ ▶️ John waste your time, if you wanna be up and running, like right where you left off,

⏹️ ▶️ John your only and best option is to have one of the fully supported,

⏹️ ▶️ John you know, Apple blessed backups, essentially Time Machine, or a disk on like SuperDuper or whatever, right?

⏹️ ▶️ John Because those are the only ways to get, quote unquote, everything back to the way it was, right? If you

⏹️ ▶️ John restore from a Time Machine backup, your Mac will look like it did at the time that backup was made. same thing with a super duper clone or

⏹️ ▶️ John something like that. That includes all the cloud stuff that includes all your connections to the cloud stuff that includes everything

⏹️ ▶️ John right. Individually iCloud Drive Dropbox Git does not include everything. All of your

⏹️ ▶️ John settings are not there. All your preferences are not there. User accounts are not there like tons of stuff is not there

⏹️ ▶️ John and having to manually reset that stuff up even if you have cool little scripts like Casey has with his brew installs

⏹️ ▶️ John and stuff like that. That is way more of a waste of your time than it is to sort of mindlessly restore from a time

⏹️ ▶️ John machine backup or a super duper clone.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Steve

⏹️ ▶️ Marco McLaughlin Marco. Marc Thiessen Yeah, I’m pretty much with John. I think there, you know, there

⏹️ ▶️ Marco is definitely a like gradual move that we have here

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to what Joe is saying here, where for many people and for an increasing number of people,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco an increasing amount of their actual data that they would need to backup is on cloud services

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that kind of ostensibly are their own backup solution

⏹️ ▶️ Marco in some way, which again, it’s questionable whether that is a backup, but anyway, it is true that over

⏹️ ▶️ Marco time, more of our stuff is moving towards things like this that we have to worry a lot less about

⏹️ ▶️ Marco than a single hard drive in a single computer on our desk. So obviously the risk profile

⏹️ ▶️ Marco is different and better when you have these things here. And there are certain features that you get from

⏹️ ▶️ Marco backup services that might not be in some of those services, things like history, you know,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco being able to undo accidental changes or accidental deletions

⏹️ ▶️ Marco or protect yourself from ransomware, encrypting all your files and stuff like that. So there is certainly

⏹️ ▶️ Marco some value there. Obviously, some of these services have history built in, like Dropbox, GitHub, you know,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco obviously there’s some history mechanics already built in there. So anyway, I think ultimately though,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco John’s right, that what the backups give you, first of all, is another copy,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco because that is, after all, what a backup is. So if you only have your

⏹️ ▶️ Marco stuff stored in one location, that can be a

⏹️ ▶️ Marco hard drive on your desk, or it can be one online service. And what if, John said, what

⏹️ ▶️ Marco if the service goes out of business? One thing that you also might wanna consider is, what if the service suspends

⏹️ ▶️ Marco your account for some reason? What if there’s some alleged TOS violation, and

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Google Photos decides, oh you know what, your Google account’s dead. Well good luck contacting Google to get your data.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Like really good luck with that. So there are definitely other risks from these

⏹️ ▶️ Marco services that if you don’t have your own backup strategy that is owned and controlled

⏹️ ▶️ Marco by you, you’re not really as protected as you might

⏹️ ▶️ Marco want. So I still think it’s worth having backups and the fact

⏹️ ▶️ Marco is backups are really cheap with today’s storage and services. Like whether it’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a cloud backup, like our Frequency Monster Backblaze, I mean that’s six bucks a month, you know.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Or you can get like a Time Machine drive, which is not that much money. Like external

⏹️ ▶️ Marco hard drives and SSDs are pretty inexpensive these days for large amounts of space. So

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I would say the value of having like an actual backup that you control in addition

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to all these online services far exceeds the cost of doing so. So you might as

⏹️ ▶️ Marco well keep doing it. Thanks to our sponsors this week, Squarespace, Linode,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and Lutron Caseta. And thanks to our members who support us directly. You can join at

⏹️ ▶️ Marco slash join. We will talk to you next week.

Ending theme

⏹️ ▶️ 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, Marco and Casey wouldn’t let him Cause

⏹️ ▶️ John it was accidental, oh

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it was accidental And you can find the

⏹️ ▶️ John show notes at ATP.FM And if you’re into

⏹️ ▶️ John Twitter,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you can follow them at C-A-S-E-Y-L-I-S-S

⏹️ ▶️ Marco So that’s Casey Liss, M-A-R-C-O-A-R-M,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and 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 to.

⏹️ ▶️ John Accidental, check podcast so

⏹️ ▶️ John long.

John’s beeps

Chapter John's beeps image.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey So I’ve been waiting for like a week and a half, because we were off on Thanksgiving break, all three

⏹️ ▶️ Casey of us, and I… I think I might know what the answer is, but I genuinely

⏹️ ▶️ Casey don’t know for certainty what the answer is to your beep conundrum. So would you…

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And I also, I had a guess, but like, as… So John sent us

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a recording of the beeps, we pasted it into the last episode. -♪ BEEPING ♪

⏹️ ▶️ Marco As I was hearing, I’m like, I’ve heard this exact song, a lot before. Something in our house

⏹️ ▶️ Marco plays this exact song. And I was like, is it the Roomba? Like, what is it that plays it? And

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I played it for Tiff, and I’m like, what is this? Something we have plays this exact

⏹️ ▶️ Marco song all the time. What is it? And somebody on Twitter said

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that it’s from Whirlpool washers or dryers. Like, when you turn on the dryer.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And I’m like, that’s it. It’s when you turn the dryer on. that’s the dryer we have.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco So I’m really curious if John, is this the fault of

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a washer or dryer?

⏹️ ▶️ John So my goal with talking about on the show, because I was kind of at my wit’s end was like, you know, deploy

⏹️ ▶️ John the internet, surely someone knows this. And I was hoping for exactly the same thing that Marco said, like, someone’s got to recognize this song,

⏹️ ▶️ John right? And then that’ll help me narrow it down, right? I also talked about doing recordings and narrowing it down that way

⏹️ ▶️ John and all that stuff. So let me take you through what I did and how I solve this, because I did solve it and I solved it pretty quickly. It was like two

⏹️ ▶️ John days after the show recording. So the system works. So the first thing I did

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco was I did start

⏹️ ▶️ John recording down there and I did pull out an old iPhone. I found an old iPhone 6. Boy, they were so thin.

⏹️ ▶️ John Old iPhone 6. They’re so

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco thin they

⏹️ ▶️ John bent. Yeah, I know. But they’re so thin and so slippery.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco Yeah, right.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Did you

⏹️ ▶️ John instantly drop it? So I put that and I found like a bunch of long cables.

⏹️ ▶️ John I gathered like, you know, a power brick and a bunch of long cables. I went down to the basement, I plug everything in, I go to plug it and I’m staring

⏹️ ▶️ John at the USB-C connector. I’m like, whoops, damn it. That’s not going to plug into this phone.

⏹️ ▶️ John It’s just that a lot of long cables in the house are now USB-C cables, and that’s not what I… Anyway,

⏹️ ▶️ John so I put the phone, iPhone 6, in the middle of the room, recorded it and captured it. That’s what you heard in the last ATP

⏹️ ▶️ John was my first recording that I captured with just, I just put it in the middle of the finished room because that was just my first guess

⏹️ ▶️ John of a recording location. And I got the beeps, right? So great. I got the song, I posted it

⏹️ ▶️ John on Twitter, Marco put it in the podcast, now it’s out there. All right, then I moved the recorder, I moved the iPhone.

⏹️ ▶️ John I put it basically inside like the Fios box. There’s like an outer like gray plastic Fios box and inside

⏹️ ▶️ John that is the little box. I put the phone literally inside that box. Like I routed the lightning cable up through one of the little

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco cable holes in it, right?

⏹️ ▶️ John So I’m like, look, if it’s the Fios box making this thing, it’s gonna be so loud because it’s like an inch from the phone.

⏹️ ▶️ John All right, I left it there, caught it again, looked at the recording, it was quieter. It was

⏹️ ▶️ John quieter than the previous ones. I’m like, all right, I have ruled out the Fios box and also anything in that

⏹️ ▶️ John same closet with the Fios box because it was way quieter than it was when it was just, you know, the phone in the middle

⏹️ ▶️ John of the room, right? Around this time, I was starting to get barraged by people on Twitter saying, it’s your washer,

⏹️ ▶️ John it’s your dryer, blah, blah, blah. Like lots of people talking about washer dryer stuff. And I was like, you know what? I

⏹️ ▶️ John shouldn’t investigate this because one of the reports, my wife, she was downstairs. She was in front of the washer and dryer. She heard

⏹️ ▶️ John it go off. She said, I think it was the water heater, which is like to the left of the washer and dryer. I’m like, maybe,

⏹️ ▶️ John you know, it’s noisy. Maybe it’s the washer and dryer. I need to investigate this. And also, there was a lot of

⏹️ ▶️ John people saying that modern washer and dryers can play songs as a form of

⏹️ ▶️ John diagnostic. Because I’m trying to think of like, look, this is not like an alarm, and it’s not a dying battery. It does it so

⏹️ ▶️ John infrequently that maybe it’s just like, maybe the washer and dryer just trying to tell me something. Like mournfully,

⏹️ ▶️ John like, you should replace my belt. Yeah. And maybe it only says it like

⏹️ ▶️ John after a cycle, when it’s like, by the way, I finished the cycle, but I also noticed like something is screwed up.

⏹️ ▶️ John So I did some research into that. And there was also, you know, a part of this was that someone posted a

⏹️ ▶️ John tweet that said, someone made an account for this. What is that beep?

⏹️ ▶️ John All one word on Twitter posted. This tune sounds extremely like a

⏹️ ▶️ John Whirlpool front load washer dryer and it triggers when the power button is pressed. And we will put a link to this tweet

⏹️ ▶️ John in the show notes. You will be able to play the video of the sound. And if Marco

⏹️ ▶️ John can put in the two clips, here is my sound.

⏹️ ▶️ John And here is the sound of a Whirlpool front-loading washer.

⏹️ ▶️ John It’s the same song, right? Marco correctly identified the song, it’s the same song. Now,

⏹️ ▶️ John part of the reason I was insistent that this is not a thing is because we don’t have a

⏹️ ▶️ John Whirlpool washer or dryer.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey But hold on, is it like

⏹️ ▶️ Casey a white labeled, what’s, is that a problematic term now? Anyway, is like a white labeled Whirlpool

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that’s actually being sold as like a Kenmore or something?

⏹️ ▶️ John I was gonna say, I also know that in the realm of washers and dryers and lots of other appliances,

⏹️ ▶️ John there are a lot of brands that are really the same as the other brands. I can never keep track of which ones they are, even though

⏹️ ▶️ John I know that Nissan is Infinity and Honda is Acura. And I know all

⏹️ ▶️ John of those, but I don’t know if Maytag and Kenmore are the same thing or if like Kenmore

⏹️ ▶️ John and Whirlpool are the same. Like, I don’t remember those. Like I know

⏹️ ▶️ Marco them. how every microwave is the same microwave? That like Madea, whatever brand it is, like every single microwave

⏹️ ▶️ Marco except for like two is that microwave.

⏹️ ▶️ John Setting aside the current practice of like people sell the same product under different names, like there are brand sharing

⏹️ ▶️ John things, right? You know, I didn’t even know that Mazda and Ford collaborated on like the Ford Pro, but

⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t remember. Anyway, I’ve got lots of uses of car knowledge is what I’m saying. But

⏹️ ▶️ John you know, so that’s why I was saying, look, maybe I just don’t know the brand things. Even though I don’t have anything Whirlpool,

⏹️ ▶️ John I need to investigate the washer and dryer. So I started investigation. So I went and we have two

⏹️ ▶️ John different branded washers and dryer. I think that we replaced them at different times or I don’t even remember how. One of them,

⏹️ ▶️ John they both have a thing. If you look at the front of them, they have some kind of thing where they do a diagnostic

⏹️ ▶️ John thingy involving sound. One of them had an app. My washer had an app. That’s what I

⏹️ ▶️ John expected. Go download the app. You press the buttons, you know, on the front of the thing. And

⏹️ ▶️ John by the way, if anyone has ever, I can’t imagine any homeowner who hasn’t done this, but

⏹️ ▶️ John Googling for the PDF of the manual of your appliance is usually more efficient than saving

⏹️ ▶️ John all your manuals. So you can Google for the PDF manual of almost every appliance. So

⏹️ ▶️ John I recommend that. Anyway, found the manual, press this button, do this thing, blah blah blah, it plays a little song.

⏹️ ▶️ John This is the first time I had ever done this, I just had reports of people on Twitter talking about it. But as soon as I heard it, I

⏹️ ▶️ John know this is not. I’m barking up the wrong alley here, because that’s not an expression.

⏹️ ▶️ John Anyway, the song it plays sounds like modem beeps. It sounds like

⏹️ ▶️ John essentially it’s just that’s I’m assuming that’s what it is. It’s like it’s transmitting information over an analog

⏹️ ▶️ John signal. Right. So you’ve launched the app. You hold it up to your thing. You press the button. It plays the song and it sounds

⏹️ ▶️ John like, you know, your modem before it connects. Right. It is not a song. It is not a melody.

⏹️ ▶️ John Right. It is data transfer and it sounds like data transfer. And by the

⏹️ ▶️ John way, I found out my washer is fine. It has no complaints. Right? Then I went over to my, that’s good.

⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, everything’s working great. Then I went over to my dryer. My dryer has,

⏹️ ▶️ John it’s a different company. And my dryer has some kind of tech that was so ill conceived.

⏹️ ▶️ John It must’ve been like on the cusp of the one that the washer has. There’s no app for it. Like

⏹️ ▶️ John if you have a newer one, they have an app, right? But this was like before they had the idea having an app, right?

⏹️ ▶️ John What they wanted you to do was call someone on the telephone, like a support person, and then they would say, okay,

⏹️ ▶️ John hold your phone receiver up to the thing, and then you’d play the song over the phone line,

⏹️ ▶️ John and then the thing on the other end of the phone line and the call center would interpret your beeps and tell you

⏹️ ▶️ John if they’re okay. I’m like, great, maybe that was the correct technology for the day, right? Maybe people didn’t have smartphones,

⏹️ ▶️ John but now we do, so just make an app. I don’t wanna have to call somebody.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Wait, was that automated, or does the person have to be like, that sounds like Eddie Vedder. Oh, it’s the motor.

⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, I mean, there is a human involved, presumably, but then there’s the computer doing the interpretation.

⏹️ ▶️ John And so I spent a while to eventually discover that, like, yeah, you can’t do this anymore.

⏹️ ▶️ John Like, there’s no one to call. Whatever call center they had running this, that doesn’t exist. I did spend

⏹️ ▶️ John a while on hold trying to get through, but it was like, I’m pretty sure you can’t do that anymore. I couldn’t do

⏹️ ▶️ John it anywhere after like 30 minutes on hold. While I was on hold, though, by the way, I’m like, OK,

⏹️ ▶️ John what could my dryer be complaining about? I had a long thorough session of spelunking

⏹️ ▶️ John the lint trap on the dryer. I have lots of interesting tools to do this. They make lots of brushes and stuff. I

⏹️ ▶️ John used the headlamp that Merlin gave me a while ago. One of the best gifts I’ve ever received. Thank

⏹️ ▶️ John you, Merlin. Do you guys have a headlamp?

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey No.

⏹️ ▶️ John It’s elastic band with a little LED light with a rechargeable battery that’s in the front of your

⏹️ ▶️ John forehead. Great for things like this, where you’re digging around and you don’t have an extra hand to hold a

⏹️ ▶️ John flashlight, even a tiny one, and no, you don’t wanna hold it in your teeth, you’re gonna wreck your teeth.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I just, I took it like under my chin, which is even harder to hold, and then I can only look at stuff that’s directly below

⏹️ ▶️ Marco me. Yeah,

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco headlamp is great.

⏹️ ▶️ John So anyway, I really got in there, I do this periodically to clean out the lint thing in the

⏹️ ▶️ John dryer and get all the stuff out, because I was like, maybe it’s complaining that it thinks it’s a lint blockage or a sensor or something

⏹️ ▶️ John like that, and I just really thoroughly, I spent, this is what I’m doing when I’m at hold. I’m at hold with what I

⏹️ ▶️ John think is a line that’s gonna eventually give me a customer service person who I can make it play the song for, who can tell me whether my dryer

⏹️ ▶️ John has something wrong with it. But like in the meantime, what the only thing I can imagine is wrong with my dryer, which otherwise

⏹️ ▶️ John seems to be perfectly fine is there is a lot of lint just down around the edges of the thing. And I had to replace like the lint

⏹️ ▶️ John filter a while ago. And, you know, so I spent a good half an hour, 40 minutes digging

⏹️ ▶️ John around in there with my little flashlight with various tweezers and sticks and brushes

⏹️ ▶️ John and vacuums and compressed air and just getting everything out of there. And while

⏹️ ▶️ John I am like, you know, forearm deep in the lint trap, the beep goes

⏹️ ▶️ John off. And I’m in the basement and I can hear it.

⏹️ ▶️ John And I don’t know what’s wrong with everyone else’s ears in my family, but when I was in the basement

⏹️ ▶️ John when it went off, I immediately looked at directly what it was because my ears work. I have two of them. They

⏹️ ▶️ John both work. And my head just went around like a swivel. I’m like,

⏹️ ▶️ John aha. It was not hard to identify. I immediately looked at exactly what it was and what was

⏹️ ▶️ John it? What’s your guess? Based on everything I said so far.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey The washer?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’m still gonna say the dryer. I still think it’s the dryer.

⏹️ ▶️ John I mean, this is kind of unfair because you don’t know everything that’s in my basement, although technically,

⏹️ ▶️ John I’m sure I’ve mentioned this before.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey What about a humidifier or dehumidifier?

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John One or the

⏹️ ▶️ John other? I told you I unplugged that. That was my

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey big theory, it was

⏹️ ▶️ John like it was dehumidifier, but then once the winter came and we don’t run the dehumidifier anymore, it’s unplugged and it was still going

⏹️ ▶️ John off, right? Because we had just added, We got a new dehumidifier this year. And

⏹️ ▶️ John that’s what I thought it was for ages, but no, not a dehumidifier. But no, what it was, what

⏹️ ▶️ John my head swiveled to, was our downstairs freezer.

⏹️ ▶️ John Oh. Guess who makes our downstairs freezer? Whirlpool? Whirlpool.

⏹️ ▶️ John I didn’t think of this, because who thinks of the freezer? I didn’t, like I walk past this freezer every day. It’s just a white

⏹️ ▶️ John nondescript freezer. And Whirlpool, I think of like, you know, maybe dishwasher, washing machine, dryer. I do not think

⏹️ ▶️ John of freezer. We have a Whirlpool freezer. Why is it singing to you? Well,

⏹️ ▶️ John I’ll get to that. But anyway, that’s what’s making this noise. It was as clear as day. And it’s on the

⏹️ ▶️ John other side of the basement. I was all over by the washing dryer, but when it went off and it played that song, I

⏹️ ▶️ John turned my head, I’m like, it’s you. And then I like ran

⏹️ ▶️ John over to it and I said Whirlpool, because it’s the Whirlpool song. As Marco pointed out, as a Twitter person,

⏹️ ▶️ John that’s a Whirlpool song. Somebody at Whirlpool wrote this melody, which by the way, did a terrible job of rendering.

⏹️ ▶️ John And lots of people on Twitter were trying to put notes on a music staff to show what the song is.

⏹️ ▶️ John And then all the music nerds were fighting amongst themselves about the different ways you can notate

⏹️ ▶️ John it and did they get the notes right? So I wanted to put one of those in the show notes, but there are too many arguments and I don’t know anything

⏹️ ▶️ John about music. So I don’t know which one is right. But anyway, that is the Whirlpool song. There’s also like a reverse version of

⏹️ ▶️ John it, which you’ll hear in the tweet thing, right? And so we have a Whirlpool freezer. And that’s all I needed

⏹️ ▶️ John to be off to the races because once you know what to Google for, you can find it. If you’re just Googling for like beeps,

⏹️ ▶️ John song, whatever, especially if you’re Googling for washer and dryer, like I wasn’t finding it, I wasn’t finding

⏹️ ▶️ John the song, right? But now I knew what to Google for, and what I knew to Google for was Whirlpool

⏹️ ▶️ John freezer beeps. All right, and that will get you results, so here we go.

⏹️ ▶️ John The first one I found was a forum post on from Stan

⏹️ ▶️ John for on March 15th, 2020. The subject is Whirlpool freezer song seven note

⏹️ ▶️ John chime. There’s lots of debates about how many notes there are here, okay? And Stan says it’s

⏹️ ▶️ John a song coming every few hours from our garage The only thing capable of making noise in that part of the garage

⏹️ ▶️ John is our Whirlpool upright freezer And he puts the part number which is my exact part number Which I also Google

⏹️ ▶️ John or are very turned off weekend car and I’ve already checked with the service department No chiming song is made by this

⏹️ ▶️ John car So here’s another person calling a bunch of people who make products and saying does our car

⏹️ ▶️ John I know this is a weird question, but does this car make any beeps? And they’re like, no, no, sir. Our

⏹️ ▶️ John car does not make beeps. Anyway, Stan says it’s a seven note chime like a song. Totally

⏹️ ▶️ John random times. Pretty loud. We actually hear it in the house.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s six notes, by the way. It’s clearly six. Like if you look at, like if you look at last week’s episode, I put as the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco chapter art for last week’s after show the, the like spectral frequency view

⏹️ ▶️ Marco of the, of the notes. It’s clearly and you can see exactly what the frequencies are. So the music nerds can can figure out

⏹️ ▶️ Marco what notes those are. It’s very clearly six notes. And anyone who’s ever heard it would know it’s six notes.

⏹️ ▶️ John Well, the problem with the music there, it says, yeah, they can figure out the frequencies, but you can you can sort of

⏹️ ▶️ John notate the same frequencies in different ways that with music notation. Right. And that’s

⏹️ ▶️ John what the kind of what they were debating. But yeah, anyway, it’s they’re hard to hear, but some of them are anyway.

⏹️ ▶️ John Stan says, you know, it’s pretty loud. We actually hear it in the house. The one day I was

⏹️ ▶️ John sitting in the car and heard it. Everything in the freezer seems fine. Freezing. Well, no buzzing motor

⏹️ ▶️ John noises, extra heat, red lights or beepings. Any sign of anything? Missed it with the freezer itself. Any ideas? Thanks

⏹️ ▶️ John in advance. So this is a person with literally the same problem. They’re being haunted by this chime. They

⏹️ ▶️ John can’t they can. It’s so loud they can hear it in the house. They can’t figure out what is there. He was in the car when he heard it,

⏹️ ▶️ John but he he knows it’s his freezer, right? Here is another one from appliance

⏹️ ▶️ John blog dot com. Mike, Mike Hotzler from January 13th, 2021. About six

⏹️ ▶️ John months ago, we would randomly hear a chime coming from the freezer. I unplugged it to investigate the sound slash melody

⏹️ ▶️ John it makes when the freezer is powered back on and played. That is the sound it makes every few hours. My items

⏹️ ▶️ John stay frozen. I’m just wondering if this is telling me something. It’s definitely not the high temperature

⏹️ ▶️ John alarm or the door alarm. Anyone else have this problem? Right. So as soon as you know, it’s a Google for

⏹️ ▶️ John you. Find the people like down to the part number like W. What is it like WZF5 6R16DW0Z?

⏹️ ▶️ John Like my actual freezer part number. People are being haunted by this damn chime. And then what you

⏹️ ▶️ John will also find is an answer from Nitram987

⏹️ ▶️ John or Nitram and various things. Unlike every one of these boards, Nitram visits like a fairy and posts

⏹️ ▶️ John like the answer fairy of saying, here we go. You having this problem? Here’s what

⏹️ ▶️ John Nitram says. It’s the control board being inadvertently affected by noise it’s picking

⏹️ ▶️ John up from the wires, feeding the rather distant alarm PZO, which happens to be located at the bottom right

⏹️ ▶️ John near of the chassis behind its cardboard shield. You will need to find technical service

⏹️ ▶️ John pointer W10854827, which lightly describes this,

⏹️ ▶️ John and then install W10861568, which currently supersedes W10846247. After many months of

⏹️ ▶️ John bewilderment, this works!

⏹️ ▶️ John In parentheses,

⏹️ ▶️ John I’m an electrical engineer. Who would have guessed that these wires, running along the side of many other wires within

⏹️ ▶️ John the freezer’s interior, would create such a problem. The tune will be the same tune that you can recreate by manually

⏹️ ▶️ John turning on and off its cooling function via the interior temperature sensor button.

⏹️ ▶️ John Yes, it does seem to coincide with the end of a compressor cycle, but that is only because any on-off cooling command

⏹️ ▶️ John to the control board begins with the compressor turning off for some minutes. You will notice that if you unplugged it and

⏹️ ▶️ John plugged it back in the freezer, it will produce a different tune. Don’t confuse that problem with yours, that you

⏹️ ▶️ John think you have a main power problem. As mentioned above, this tune is the same as the tune you get by manually turning off the cooling

⏹️ ▶️ John right this same answer pretty much verbatim is copy and paste it to everyone who has this problem so you’re like not

⏹️ ▶️ John only have I found the problem with lots of people being haunted by this chime nitram has the solution

⏹️ ▶️ John it is a technical service pointer you can look this stuff up you can see hey the problem is this thing

⏹️ ▶️ John you buy this part you rip out the little like sensor thingy and you put in the new one with has shorter wires and your problem

⏹️ ▶️ John is solved right so you would think I would run out and get

⏹️ ▶️ John myself a W10846247 kit.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Is option B just like disconnecting the piezo buzzer inside?

⏹️ ▶️ John Well, so here’s the thing. Other people, you know, before Nitram came in and saved everybody’s problem,

⏹️ ▶️ John people were like, can I just disconnect the buzzer? But one of the important features of a freezer like this is

⏹️ ▶️ John like the alarm that tells you if it went over temperature, right? Or if the door is left open, that’s the same

⏹️ ▶️ John buzzer. So I wasn’t gonna disconnect that. Like we had a freezer that didn’t have the buzzer and it’s bad. kid leaves

⏹️ ▶️ John it open, everything spoils in there, right? That

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco happened to us this summer. Yeah, you need the buzzer

⏹️ ▶️ John and it and the buzzer needs to be loud so you can hear it. And it is because you know, when that buzzer plays a song,

⏹️ ▶️ John we hear it through the whole damn house. So I’m looking into this, but I’m

⏹️ ▶️ John not done here because just because I find like a bunch of people the same problem, but I’m suspicious when I noticed

⏹️ ▶️ John the same person is posting the answer everywhere, right? And that was from February 2021, this particular

⏹️ ▶️ John but it’s like January, February, March, Nitram’s going around putting the answer. Here is an April 2021

⏹️ ▶️ John update from Nitram. The solution that Whirlpool offers and it’s W108-61568, kid,

⏹️ ▶️ John as it

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey turns

⏹️ ▶️ John out, did not resolve, all caps,

⏹️ ▶️ John my melody issue in the long run.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco I

⏹️ ▶️ John apologize for the this works, in all caps and quotes previously, it was premature.

⏹️ ▶️ John You think, Nitram? You think it was premature? He posted the same answer on

⏹️ ▶️ John seven different bulletin boards and then he comes up with an update. Oh, by the way, remember when I said this

⏹️ ▶️ John works? Didn’t solve the problem. Whoopsies. So I did not order

⏹️ ▶️ John this kit. I kept reading, you know, I wasn’t about to just order this thing because what I wanted to see is

⏹️ ▶️ John more than one person says this solves the problem. I want to see everybody saying, I installed this kit and it solved it too. And the reason I was super suspicious

⏹️ ▶️ John is one, the I am electrical engineer in parentheses, but two, the idea that it’s like Long

⏹️ ▶️ John wires are affected by electrical noise. That’s causing this, like it didn’t make

⏹️ ▶️ John sense to me. Because I’m like, what has changed? I even like what has changed in my basement environment that would like,

⏹️ ▶️ John what is it picking up? And I did recently put a new Eero down there. So I unplugged the Eero, even with the Eero unplugged,

⏹️ ▶️ John the thing still went off, right? So my diagnosis, as some, as a bunch

⏹️ ▶️ John of other people said in their problem reports is, my freezer is having difficulties.

⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t know what those difficulties are, but it is, like Casey’s monitor, it is unwell.

⏹️ ▶️ John Oh, come on.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco Something about it is not.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco My freezer

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John works

⏹️ ▶️ Marco fine, you must be the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John problem.

⏹️ ▶️ John And by the way, this thing about the, like you can play the song, like this is what I did. I showed everyone in my family. I said, come down to the basement,

⏹️ ▶️ John let me show you something. I can make it play the song by essentially turning the cooling function off. If you hold

⏹️ ▶️ John like the little button for three seconds, you can turn the cooling function off. And when you turn it back on,

⏹️ ▶️ John it plays the song, right? So whatever, something is happening, probably

⏹️ ▶️ John like at the end of a cycle, like a compressor cycle, right? That is causing this thing to think, hey, the

⏹️ ▶️ John cooling is off and now it’s back on. That’s not healthy. It’s not losing power, because

⏹️ ▶️ John that’s a different issue, as pointed out in these things. If you lose power and it like boots up, if you unplug it and plug it back in, it’s

⏹️ ▶️ John a different song. This is the song of like, I’m on and I’m plugged in, but someone has

⏹️ ▶️ John turned off the cooling function, but now they’ve turned it back on. but I was plugged in the whole time, right? That’s the song

⏹️ ▶️ John it’s playing. And no one is turning the cooling function on and off. And there is a low temperature alarm and

⏹️ ▶️ John it’s not getting below temperature, right? It’s just that at the end of a cycle, something happens

⏹️ ▶️ John that makes it think, oh, cooling is off, oh, cooling is back on, like immediately, right? Maybe

⏹️ ▶️ John I could hook it up to a UPS, maybe it doesn’t need a line conditioner, but I’m thinking nothing has changed in that regard. The power that is being

⏹️ ▶️ John fed is the same power it’s always been fed. I haven’t put new things on a circuit. Like nothing has changed. What has changed?

⏹️ ▶️ John This is a pretty old freezer. So my solution, again, I Marco’d the hell out of this one, is new

⏹️ ▶️ John freezer. Like, I don’t care what the problem is. I have too much stuff in this stupid freezer.

⏹️ ▶️ John That was the right move. Yeah. Because you know what it’s like if you have a downstairs freezer. I have

⏹️ ▶️ John it because certain people in my family like to have lots of food in the house. And one gigantic refrigerator

⏹️ ▶️ John is insufficient for their needs, and therefore we have a freezer in the basement, and we have tons and tons

⏹️ ▶️ John of food in it, because it’s just the way it is, right? Losing power

⏹️ ▶️ John or having a freezer that breaks and having to like throw all that stuff out. I know it’s the window and you can put it in the garage. Like

⏹️ ▶️ John we’ve been down this road before. The bottom line is it is a disruption to lose your refrigerator

⏹️ ▶️ John or your freezer unexpectedly. It is much better to sniff out the potential

⏹️ ▶️ John future betrayal of an appliance and preempt it by saying, I’m gonna replace

⏹️ ▶️ John you now while you’re still working.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s like bad sectors on a hard drive. Like you don’t want to leave that just to go forever.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco Right. And

⏹️ ▶️ John it’s like, this is a pretty old thing. I think it’s like seven or eight years old. It’s not like I’m getting rid of a one-year-old thing.

⏹️ ▶️ John And it still works. And so we’ll give it to someone for free and say, look, do you want a free freezer? It’s pretty good. It plays a song every

⏹️ ▶️ John few hours. And by the way, the randomness of it is essentially, hey, when does the compressor run? And

⏹️ ▶️ John that depends on how often the kids have been down there to sneak frozen cookies out of it or whatever, right? So it

⏹️ ▶️ John is random because human behavior is like mixed into it. But it is regular enough because

⏹️ ▶️ John the compressor does eventually need to come on right and with a freezer if no one’s going into it and it’s well sealed and no one

⏹️ ▶️ John opens it it can be a pretty long stretch between the compressor coming on and off right so I ordered a new

⏹️ ▶️ John freezer it’s slightly bigger than the previous one it’s a different brand I think it is

⏹️ ▶️ John arriving on Saturday anyway the solution of the problem is that was the Whirlpool song we have a Whirlpool freezer

⏹️ ▶️ John the Whirlpool freezer is actively in the process of betraying me and I am preempting that.