Anyone here using a CDN to accelerate their website access around the world?

My micro.blog instant joy

Friday thinking… I find is so refreshing to be able to have decent conversations on the open web. There is no drama here, everything seems so… simple. It brings back some confidence about human’s capabilities to engage in respectful conversations…. That’s be because there are lots of nice guys here on Micro.blog… it is lacking elsewhere (no finger pointing here, I won’t name a platform… but, well, ya know, right?).

Returning to normal programming.

Preparing my next Friday Notes issue to be published on HEY World, tomorrow.

Good morning. There was a time, a long long time ago, I used to say « Good morning » on Twitter. I don’t know really why I did that. Oh well. Anyways, good morning. 😎

On Intel’s Tick Tock Strategy (#intel #apple #applesilicon)

How funny is that? It seems Intel is applying its “tick-tock strategy” to its relationship with Apple. One week, Intel is slamming Apple’s M1 Macs with highly questionable ads featuring Justin Long, the week after Intel is luring Apple’s business to make their future processors.

So obviously you’ve seen some of the competitive energies resume because there’s a lot of great innovation to be done, and we haven’t seen PC demand at this level for a decade and a half. The world needs more of that, and there is competitive fun going on with Apple and the Mac ecosystem” — Gelsinger

I don’t know if this competitive landscape is fun like Gelsinger is mentioning, maybe we could ask Tim Cook?

Beyond the HomePod (#apple #homepod)

AppleInsider:

Apple needs to release new products to compete in the home. Be it an “Apple TV 6” or “HomeHub,” something needs to change the customer’s perspective in order to get traction in the space.

The article fails to mention a feature a HomePod replacement could and should include: home networking. I wrote about this many times. Apple left home networking market at a time where it was transitioning to WIFI 6 and home automation really started to pick up pace, thanks to things like HomeKit.

Mesh networking is something critical these days with the new work-from-home trend caused by the pandemic. Only Apple could create an easy to use networking product, à la Ubiquity or something like the AirPort product line. Speakers like the HomePod mini could evolve to be mesh extenders. I don’t really care if this product does have a screen or multiple mics. Sure it has to be HomeKit integrated. No, I don’T want it to be a successor to the Apple TV. Pricing would be too out of control. It has to be a separate product.

Leaving the home networking space could be one of the worst Apple decision in recent years. We keep seeing the consequences of it now.

Image credit: taken from AppleInsider’s article.

Fuck Facebook — Dear Parents RESIST ! (#facebook #masssurveillance)

From BuzzFeed:

Executives at Instagram are planning to build a version of the popular photo-sharing app that can be used by children under the age of 13, according to an internal company post obtained by BuzzFeed News.

Sorry for the bad words, but this is beyond any shit ever spit out by Facebook. They literally scrap anything they touch: Instagram, WhatsApp, society. WTF are Facebook’s Instagram leadership thinking? I’m so tired of this shit! I’m utterly angry! Now, since those people can’t figure out reality, what’s good, what’s bad, this message is for parents: RESIST! You hold the destiny of your children, just say NO! Don’t allow your children on social networks. Period. Enough, already.

Is bloatware coming to iPhone? (#apple #iPhone #russia)

According to 9to5Mac, users from Russia, upon setup of their brand-new iPhone:

Apple users will see a dialog box upon initial setup of new devices that features web browsers, antivirus, messenger, email clients, and more to be installed by default. The list of apps is provided by the government.

At first, I thought it was a bad decision from Apple, to allow this to happen. Bending to state laws from a country like Russia doesn’t look good. Who’s next? China? What about smartphone carriers?

The headlines are scarier than the reality, though. Users will be able to uninstall those state-sponsored apps. Otherwise, it is easy to imagine many scenarios like the dreaded PC bloatware we had to endure in the nineties from Microsoft’s OEMs. Or even worse, what about state surveillance applications? How will Apple say no to those? Are PCs subject to the same requirements? If not, why?

On the flip side, I can see some situations where apps could be suggested that would make sense, like contact tracing apps. It could have made a difference if we had this feature implemented before the pandemic. Another case is to suggest a government sponsored app that gives access to services sponsored by the government (immigration, finance, security, etc.). Finally, what are those apps that will make the list when setting up a new iPhone in Russia? I hope someone will share their experience once the law comes into effect.

Photo credits: Steve Harvey on Unsplash

Something is Going with the iMac (#apple #imac #applesilicon)

Current iMac design

Well, rumours abound, changes to the Apple Store options for the iMac, the demise of the iMac Pro, something is really going on with the iMac line. As Apple is currently in the midst of their transition to a full Apple Silicon future for the Mac, we may find what’s coming next, sooner than later.

I always loved the iMac because it is the most truthful version of the Mac original vision. I owned a 24” 2005 white iMac, then a 2007 aluminum version before my current 2017 iMac, on which I work on every weekday, for my day time work. I’m really looking forward for Apple to inject a new dose of design language in general, but especially for the iMac. The chin, the bezels, the rounded back all feel quite dated and tired. The ultimate form factor is to get a screen, nothing more. Think of it like a big iPad Pro on a svelte stand. The next design has to be iconic. It should differentiate itself from the current iPad Pro or the ProDisplay XDR. Apple’s industrial design team must enter new territories, they have to put a clear mark on Jony Ive’s era. Everything in Apple’s current Mac product lines look and feel like Jony Ive’s team work. We are due for a new beginning.

Will this new machine come in April? I feel like Apple should use a more important event like WWDC or one of the fall keynote to release such a landmark product. Current movements on the Apple Store and recent discoveries in Apple’s latest beta software points to a sooner than later release. We shall see very soon, I guess.

About these Read Later apps or services

Thought of the day: read later lists are useless for me. I tend to forget about the items I save in them. It was true with Instalaper, Pocket, Safari and now Reeder. I don’t read more because I save things in them. The trick for me is to read it now or else. Simple. The longer I wait to pick an article out of these lists, the less likely I will read it. So, I end up with a mass of unread and expired content. Are you more successful than me?

Anyone using @Readwiseio here? My trial expired. A few thoughts: their app feels “strange”; like a big “webview”. Workflow not yet clear to me. No Safari Extension support. Not cheap. Seems popular. You’re thoughts?

On the upcoming iPad Pro update (#apple #rumour #ipadpro)

IPad Pro with Magic Keyboard

As reported by MacRumors:

“Apple has tested ‌iPad‌ Pros with a Thunderbolt connector that would make them compatible with additional external monitors, hard drives, and peripherals, plus it brings faster data syncing speeds. Apple’s Mac machines have featured Thunderbolt technology for years now, but current ‌iPad Pro‌ and iPad Air models have standard USB-C ports.”

Such an iPad feature has to come with much improved operating system support for external devices, like external monitors, which is currently very limited under iPadOS 14.4. Expect an iPadOS 14.5 surprise support (something along he line of mouse support with iPadOS 13.4 at around the same time last year) or iPad 15 with profound improvements compared to iPadOS 14 which was limited in new features.

Personally, the key for a possible upgrade from my 2018 iPadPro lies in the software, not only the hardware. Also, rumours all points to the 12.9” iPad Pro, what about the 11”? I highly wish that Apple will make the 11”, just a smaller version of the 12.9” version.

Dear Justin — You’re So Funny (#apple #intel #ads #advertising)

Honestly, I like these Intel ads with Justin Long. The one with the dongle, at the very end, is priceless. These ads are fun. Not as fun as the “originals”, though, but still. Intel hits the nerves. Intel is playing the Apple playbook, simple as that. It’s an interesting moment, a blip, in the advertising world. Nothing more. Will it make a difference? I doubt it.

Want to know what Craft is capable of as a website publishing tool? Take a look. Move around the site, you’ll get a better idea of its navigation structure and feature. I love this app.

RIP iMac Pro, HomePod (#apple #imacpro #homepod)

What does the iMac Pro and the HomePod, two entirely different products, have in common? It’s not the fact that they are no longer being sold. The iMac Pro and the HomePod were created by Apple when they were caught off guard by market trends. In the case of the iMac Pro, Apple tried to answer pro users who were demanding a replacement to the aging trash can Mac Pro. Apple didn’t read the temperature room correctly. They acted urgently and responded with the wrong answer, the iMac Pro. The right answer would have been to fix the Mac Pro instead by creating another more modern version of the expandable Mac Pro, which they finally did later in 2019. The HomePod was created when Apple (finally) realized the smart speakers market was a thing. Apple misread the room temperature again with a high-end smart speaker which wasn’t that smart but sounded good. In such a market, pricing is everything.

Apple is at its best when they create products they want to use for themselves, just like they did with the iPhone. The Apple Car is such a thing really exists), the AR glasses (if such a thing really exists) are a potential case of such products. The Apple Watch was also built on the same principles of the iPhone: something they really want to use themselves.

I own two HomePod, paired together and two HomePod mini, placed in two different rooms. I love them all, but I prefer the mini for hard to explain reasons. It is sad to see the HomePro go. It could have played so differently.

What’s the next Apple product to be killed? The iPod touch?

Afterthought: what is Apple comes out with a new HomePod with an integrated wifi 6 router and maybe some storage, something along the line of the AirPort Extreme a few years ago? A new HomePod mini could also be released with wifi extender built-in. I would buy that in a heartbeat.

Image credit: Basic Apple Guy. I love this guy’s blog.

Not one but two newsletters (#news)

For those who didn’t know, I have two newsletters. One available from Substack available at https://numericcitizien.substack.com on a monthly basis and the other one entirely made with Mailbrew. On every Saturday morning, a newsletter is built using the RSS feeds of my blogs as a source to create a summary of all my publications in the last week. So, take a look at the latest issue of “Numeric Citizen Newsletter”. There are currently 30 subscribers to this newsletter.

If you plan to subscribe to Mailbrew to build your own newsletter, please, do me a favour and consider using the affiliated link to do so.

Guilty of Digital Consumerism (#apps #services #workflow)

Greg Morris on digital consumerism:

The level of consumerism and marketing tricks being used to sell apps and services is growing over time. They all promise to fix that gap in your work life, just like adverts promise to fix the one in your love life, or improve your happiness, or whatever it is. It’s all lies.

I cannot talk for others, but for me, when I’m jumping on another service or a new app, it’s because it offers a seizable improvement. Going from Notion to Craft is my latest example of such move. I’ll elaborate on this at length in a feature post in the very near future.

I recently wrote “Are we digital nomads?” My answer is yes. It seems we cannot stay in one place for a very long time, looking for the new, the latest and greatest, all the time. We’re bored. This is what it is. Form takes over function. Or is it? Again, my blogger workflow is full of moving parts and I consider it is an ongoing experiment.

About those WebP images (#google #usertracking #nonstandard)

WebP image format goal, according to Google:

WebP is a modern image format that provides superior lossless and lossy compression for images on the web. Using WebP, webmasters and web developers can create smaller, richer images that make the web faster. WebP lossless images are 26% smaller in size compared to PNGs. WebP lossy images are 25-34% smaller than comparable JPEG images at equivalent SSIM quality index.

I’ve seen more and more WebP images in recent months when I try to download an image from Safari. It’s frustrating. It’s not a standard. Making the web load faster so tracking scripts can run more easily, that the reason behind all those “initiatives” from Google. WebP is a terrible idea. AMP pages was a terrible idea. And FLOC is a terrible idea. Google is full of terrible ideas. Even for searching, Google is bad. Boy, I hate Google.

I’ve been using WebP Converter recently.

HEY World, it’s now official! (#hey #heyworld #blogging)

They flipped the switch to ON. HEY World is LIVE! I’m so glad, curious and already excited to use this other channel to share my written content with the world. I’m already thinking about my first post on this new platform. Furthermore, I think this addition brings even more value to an already useful service, on which I depend every single day. Recently, I asked: How many websites can a blogger have? Well, as soon as a newcomer doesn’t add too much friction when publishing content, it’s ok to have many. HEY World seems to be such a service. Count me in.

Anyone here using Mastodon? If yes, why? Should I cross-post from here? Which one should I join? Tell me more. I’m not really aquainted with this platform.

On Spoonbill (#twitter #mailbrew)

I recently published a long piece about transforming your Twitter experience by using Twitter lists instead of following a bunch of accounts. As noted in the article, one side effect of this approach is that services that look for your Twitter account’s list of people you follow won’t really work. That’s the case for a new service called “Spoonbill”.

Keep updated on your friends’ and family members’ bios, websites, locations, and names.

Spoonbill will send you a summary of changes that occurred on Twitter’s bio of people you follow. I wonder if this service can be tweaked to use Twitter’s lists instead. What about Mailbrew, maybe they could come up with a similar feature, which would be really cool.

In the meantime, I’m not coming back to following two thousands people.

On iCloud Photo Library migration (#keyword)

In a surprising move, Apple starting today allows people to export their iCloud Photo Library to Google Photos. Why not provide a download to a local computer, outside the Photos app. I can see many use cases for doing so: backup purposes or simply to dump photos in a structure of directories for archiving purposes.

Calling for @help here @manton : can you point me to a simple guide or instructions sequence for adding a complete h-card to my microb.blog? Thanks a lot!

After spending so many hours trying to understand the requirements to set up my online presence to support the IndieWeb movement… I’m close to just giving up. I fail to get the whole picture and none of the sites that I look at has a complete explanation that corresponds to my use case. Gosh. I’ll put this aside for a while and eventually come back to this. Maybe.

I often read the word “Quill” in here but never really paid too much attention, until now. Quill allows for posting content to your blog from a simple web page. You knew that, already, right? Not me. Sorry for the interruption, normal programming to return in 3, 2, 1. Thank you.