1 oct. 2023

It seems to be taken as fact these days that Google pays $20B to be the default search engine on Apple devices. I for one don’t want to see what happens when Apple’s services department has to make up for $20B in lost revenue, plus the costs of actually running a search engine.

Looking at what the App Store is becoming for instance, I don’t trust them to be much more ethical than Google — and they’d probably make it harder to switch search engines, too.

Bloomberg - Are you a robot?

I don't know what Apple did but I can’t get `iconv` on macOS Sonoma to ignore invalid characters and that’s completely breaking my PHP validation AppleScript 🤬

(Yes I still have a legacy website in latin1. Changing the encoding is on the to-do list, okay?)

Looks like The Sphere would be an interesting place for a rave (that would possibly destroy your brain) but for a concert I find it rather sad — on video they look like they’re playing in front of a green screen, and in person they might as well not be there since you’re coming for the immense music video. But I don’t know, I don’t understand arena concerts anyway.

The Sphere’s first show looks like it was a mind-blowing spectacle

U2 puts on its first in a series of concerts at The Sphere.

30 sep. 2023

Well now I want a Shaper Origin 😍
This is beautiful, and pretty much impossible to do with any other tools

Mettez à jour votre navigateur | Facebook

When are we gonna see a foldable phone using e-ink for the external screen? It’d feel a bit less wasteful to have two screens if they have different use cases: the e-ink makes for a great e-reader, and is perfectly usable to chat, e-mail, process notifications (and even better at it than a regular screen under bright sunlight); if you need to see photos or watch video, you unfold the phone.

I’m torn between “Finally, something good comes out of both ‘AI’ and Spotify’s hostile takeover on podcasting” and “Oh no, this has the potential to cement Spotify’s hold on podcasting.” I guess Apple at least could afford to do the same, but none of the other apps.

Technically there's a <podcast:transcript> tag for RSS feeds, but I don’t think it’s been used much (neither by podcasts nor by apps), and today’s announcement isn’t gonna encourage publishers to bother 😔

Spotify is adding auto-generated transcripts to millions of podcasts

Auto-transcription follows a new AI translation tool.

Me and my executive dysfunction

28 sep. 2023

To be fair, native apps have started embedding node servers as well 😖

Jer Warren (@nyquildotorg)

The way Electron breaks the browser security model is definitely bad, but I think it’s important to separate Electron’s actual security issues from the things people do *inside* of Electron. Namely, a node_modules folder full of shit they mostly don’t even know the purpose of, let alone the trustworthiness of the developers who wrote it (or the trustworthiness of all the things those developer had in *their* node_modules folder.) The combination of no browser security plus an unlimited number of unvetted dependencies is a really bad combination.

I am shocked, shocked to find out the company that’s been giving out at least one free game per week for five years to get people using their store was living above its means.

Layoffs at Epic

Earlier today Tim Sweeney sent the following email to Epic employees.

I’ve been waiting for this for years, wondering why it wasn’t part of Apple Pay from the beginning — because individual banking apps are all UX atrocities in similar or different ways — so it’s nice to see that 1) it’s on their radar and 2) it appears to be rather complex to put in place.

Apple Wallet can now show UK users their bank account balances

Apple has launched a new iPhone Wallet feature that lets UK users see their current account balance, along with recent deposits and payments.

To quiet the machines, Philips packed their CPAP devices with foam. The foam broke down over time sending potentially “toxic & carcinogenic” material into the throats and lungs of users. “Reports detailed nearly 2,000 cases of cancer, 600 liver & kidney illnesses & 17,000 respiratory ailments.”

Philips withheld > 3,700 complaints over 11 years from the FDA, while waging aggressive marketing campaigns to sell more machines. “There were people who knew and knew for a long said time,” said a. 1/2

I was gonna complain about Meta’s new Snap Spectacles having the ability to livestream for four hours on a full battery, then I realized that the expectation of privacy in public spaces is completely dead already and I’d much rather people streamed concerts and other events from their glasses than brandishing their phone in the air.

Ray-Ban Meta smart glasses hands-on: Techy sunglasses you might actually want to wear

Meta has almost completely revamped its high-tech sunglasses, now called the Ray-Ban Meta smar glasses, resulting in a slimmer design, improved audio, a new …

27 sep. 2023

by New Yorker cartoonist Ellis Rosen

hey sorry I missed your text, I am processing a non-stop 24/7 onslaught of information with a brain designed to eat berries in a cave

Honestly; good for them! Enough with the race to the bottom.

iPhone 15 Pro users will pay full console price for Resident Evil 4 remake

Apple seems pretty confident about matching console performance.

The interesting minutiae of what an “autopilot” looks like in 2023 when it’s not designed by a sociopathic toddler

We try out the first legal level 3 automated driving system in the US

This is the first driver assist to allow you to take your eyes off the road.

Ooh, nice, zooming into the screen with Ctrl+scroll only zooms the screen containing the cursor now 🙌

What the fuck?

Uli Kusterer (

Attached: 2 images From the comments on a video on US plugs and sockets:

Welcome to the cycle of generative AI making search worse.

Quora uses ChatGPT which hallucinates an answer to a nonsense question.

Google Search picks up this nonsense answer from Quora which has high page rank and treats it as an instant answer.

26 sep. 2023

If it were up to me, widgets on the Mac wouldn’t have shipped without a variable zoom setting. They’re wayyy too big for me, but I guess the size makes sense if you’re *only* going to have widgets on the desktop, and nothing else — very much not my lifestyle.

As for the beautiful aerial screensavers becoming beautiful desktop backgrounds, they’re incompatible with TopNotch, the app that puts a black rectangle behind the menu bar in order to hide the notch, and I can’t possibly live without it 😖

Oh noooooo.

Never mind, widgets are expressly not designed for people like me. (Yes, my desktop is full of icons. What’s more, they’re painstakingly *organized* and I will not look kindly on the OS rearranging them at random.)

Whimsical chaos on macOS Sonoma when the Desktop is full

This is a publicly accessible backup of the video content from a tweet by Danny Lin (@kdrag0n) located at

“Widgets can dynamically shift between color and monochrome—or you can choose to keep them in either style all the time.”

Very glad to read this last part, because when they demoed the widgets spontaneously changing (I’d completely forgotten about that) it looked hellishly distracting.

macOS Sonoma Review: Small moves

macOS Sonoma is an update that feels small–but in all the best ways. Upgrading it won’t change how you look at your Mac, at least not at first. This means that if you’re desperate…

Me: Don’t rush and install the new macOS on the computer you live on, that’s just bad practice.

Me: But I want the widgets! And the screensavers, but mostly just the widgets.

Me: Well, I suppose there aren’t too big low-level changes to the OS anyway 🤷

I know there’s already been a bunch of rebukes to the Musk biography and we’re all done with it, but this is a particularly good one (via Today in Tabs).

Elon Musk and the Infinite Rebuy

Walter Isaacson tried to write a "Great Man" biography of the rockets-and-cars genius. That’s not an effective way to understand Elon Musk.

25 sep. 2023

New: The End of Privacy is a Taylor Swift Fan TikTok Account Armed with Facial Recognition Tech

A TikTok account is using facial recognition tech to dox random people simply for clout with its millions of viewers. The account often takes requests from the comments on who to unmask next.

- I spoke to multiple victims. One said they felt “violated,” another flattered before giving way to worry. All reflected one general point: we are now all exposed in public because of this technology
- TikTok refuses to remove because it says the account doesn’t violate policies. The account is technically public information. But an expert spoke to said TikTok should reevaluate that decision. I would say—the old distinction between “public” and “private” is not nuanced enough. There is a difference between someone’s public posts and a public search engine that collects every use of someone’s face on the internet and puts that in the hands of strangers

The End of Privacy is a Taylor Swift Fan TikTok Account Armed with Facial Recognition Tech

A viral account is using off-the-shelf facial recognition tech to dox random people on the internet for the amusement of millions of viewers. One victim said they “felt a bit violated really.”

getty is quickly following adobe.

this is why i feel copyright is a bad angle.

if courts come down against fair use with ai, generative ai profits and experimentation will quickly become intensely centralized, but the technology isn’t going anywhere, and nobody will be meaningfully paid.

generated art will still proliferate and improve, and as it does more and more people will use it

Getty made an AI generator that only trained on its licensed images

Generative AI by Getty Images offers copyright indemnification to users.

Individual voices are impressive as long as you don’t compare with the original — it’s very weird to hear Kristen Bell, the only voice in the group I’m really familiar with, speak Spanish — but conversations fall deep into the uncanny valley, with weird timing and mismatched energies making them feel a lot more robotic than each person in isolation.

Props for adding a transcript to the translated episodes, even though they didn’t bother adding them to the originals.

Spotify’s AI Voice Translation Pilot Means Your Favorite Podcasters Might Be Heard in Your Native Language — Spotify

Across cultures, countries, and communities, the stories we share bring us together. And more often than not, it is the voices of the speakers that lend as much weight to the stories as the narratives themselves. For more than 15 years, Spotify’s global platform has empowered creators of all walks to share their work with… Read more »

Spotify is partnering with OpenAI to give podcasters the option to automatically translate podcasts IN THEIR OWN VOICE.

It’s really wild to feel like we’re living in a science fiction movie when it comes to all of the advances we’re seeing in generative AI.

Spotify is going to clone podcasters’ voices — and translate them to other languages

A partnership with OpenAI will let podcasters replicate their voices to automatically create foreign-language versions of their shows.

When they presented Resident Evil coming “to the iPhone 15 Pro” I thought surely that was just marketing for the newest model, and it would work on others — but no, the game really requires a 15 Pro 😲

Apple must have paid a bunch for this port, right? Or at least provided the engineers to do it? I can’t imagine Capcom spontaneously willing to release the game just on a single iPhone model and the M1 iPads and Macs.

24 sep. 2023

When Apple vocally switched sides to support California’s “right to repair” law, I knew there had to be a catch. Cory Doctorow explains the catch eloquently.

Apple uses VIN locking or parts pairing which is a process also used by car makers, printer manufacturers & Medtronic ventilators that requires a secret code from the manufacturer to enable replacement parts to be recognized. Bypassing it violates the DMCA which as a federal law beats state laws.


What the fuck JFC 🤦🏻‍♂️

Dare Obasanjo (

A lot of the problems with social media come from the fact that the content treadmill never stops. Influencers telling their hundreds of thousands of followers what they overheard other people talking about at lunch is one such example. It’s a horrendous invasion of privacy that is a terrible thing to normalize. 1984 envisioned a surveillance state created by the government. We now live in one created by people’s desire to get likes on TikTok.

23 sep. 2023

What is wrong with people? If you want your posts to be found, just use tags. Why would anyone want to come up in some weirdo’s toxic search when they least expect it? What did these people use Twitter search for?

The Bean Identity (

Have you made your posts publically searchable? [ ] Yes I have [ ] I can’t (yet) - not on mastodon 4.2 or other fedi software [ ] I haven’t decided yet [ ] I have decided to not

I hadn’t read the post when it made the rounds because I don’t really care about Bard, but geez unleashing it onto the public is completely irresponsible 🤦

Google’s Bard Just Got More Powerful. It’s Still Erratic.

The chatbot now pulls information from a user’s Gmail, Google Docs and Google Drive accounts. The feature leaves a lot to be desired.

22 sep. 2023

Watching a Firewatch playthrough for no particular reason and, damn, I’d forgotten what a shame it is that Campo Santo ended up swallowed by the Valve black hole.

Every so often Instagram shows me a Japanese reel and it has no music, no one talking, nothing, just whatever they’re filming (generally a dog — or otters). It’s weird and almost unsettling in contrast. I’ve just decided to make a conscious effort to follow more Japanese accounts.

ChatGPT has definitively passed the Turing test.

Während sich in Deutschland 15.000 Transportanträge für Windräder bei der Autobahn GmbH stapeln, weil u.a. der Weg zum Zielort "beschwerlich" ist, schaue ich mir dieses Video an und denke: What the hell, Deutschland…

21 sep. 2023

It’s a shame that the video is obnoxiously overproduced, because *that’s* what AI is about.

Edit: There’s a watchable, more detailed version. Ahh, *now* we’re comfortably back in the familiar “damn that’s scary.”

Introducing Microsoft 365 Chat

Microsoft 365 Chat is the hero experience in Microsoft 365 Copilot. It’s a powerful new AI capability in that goes far beyond simple questions and answers to…

Microsoft 365 Chat: Your Personal Assistant at Work

Microsoft 365 Chat is a powerful new capability in Copilot that goes far beyond simple questions and answers to tame the complexity, eliminate the drudgery, …

Don’t throw out those used coffee grounds—use them for 3D printing instead

Any object you create can be thrown back into a coffee grinder and reused on a new object.

I tried the “generate a gaming avatar for me” thing in Bing Chat and, after one successful generation (that clearly wasn’t coming from DALL-E 3 yet) it started improvising fake data:image/png URLs instead. Oh, this is gonna go great.

I can’t wait for next week’s Windows 11 update that will let me ask a supercomputer across the world to “organize my windows” so it can consume three gallons of water and a pound of coal to trigger the ‘arrange windows’ feature on my laptop.

I mean, I’m kinda kidding, it has the potential to be useful, I've been clamoring for something like this for months, and I do want to play with it, but what an example to put forward in your promo video 🤦

Introducing Copilot in Windows 11, new AI tools, and more

The best Windows ever is getting even better, with brand new ways to make the everyday easier. With nearly 200 new features, the new Windows 11 update is one…

It’s wild that the first NeXT Computer came out only four years after the original Macintosh. With Objective-C and Interface Builder, a software platform so cleverly designed that it's still powering many Mac apps thirty years later. And, boy, that cube design. I don’t think I’d ever properaly seen the inside of one, and it’s beautiful 💜

I Bought a NeXTcube, Now What? - Krazy Ken’s Tech Misadventures

So, Krazy Ken bought a NeXTcube. Now what? Today, we’re going to open the system up, try out the NeXTstep OS, and we’ll even measure the cube to see if the r…

I love that Panay announced his departure just three days ago and Microsoft’s hardware division instantly travelled back in time fifteen years, back to the era of tech websites live-blogging keynotes.

I’m not sure I expect the Surface line to still exist in four years.

The media reports that Panos Panay basically rage quit Microsoft after headcount cuts and canceled projects from the cost cutting exercise earlier this year.

The confusing part about that narrative is that Amazon’s hardware unit has similarly suffered cost cuts.

Maybe it’s a case of the devil I don’t know is better than the devil I know?

Microsoft Windows boss Panos Panay left for Amazon after cuts and canceled products in his unit, insiders say

Insiders explain why the 20-year Microsoft veteran and a leader of Windows and Surface PCs suddenly left for Amazon.

As funny as it is that it took eight years of doomed UX experimentation to go *back* to swiping up for information widgets — I really appreciate being able again to use any decorative watch face instead of being locked to modular so I have direct access to information.

Well, not *any* face. It takes too much effort for me to read analog hands, so I can’t use some of the prettiest watch faces available.

NPR’s Pop Culture Happy Hour is doing a whole episode on Starfield, WTF 🙃

Not sure why I and many other people have been convinced that Hue bulbs were about to be magically support Thread directly — there must have been a bunch of confused articles coming out when it was first announced — but no, it’s just the bridge getting Matter.

Apple TVs, Google Nests and Amazon Echos are gaining Thread support, meaning one-step integration between an off-the-shelf Thread bulb and your ready-to-use smart home. Hue clinging to control over the system is gonna cost them long-term.

20 sep. 2023

The details are horrifying. The abuse these intelligent animals suffered is bad enough. Now imagine how Neuralink would treat human test subjects or, worse, “consumers.”

The Gruesome Story of How Neuralink’s Monkeys Actually Died

Elon Musk says no primates died as a result of Neuralink’s implants. A WIRED investigation now reveals the grisly specifics of their deaths as US authorities have been asked to investigate Musk’s claims.

An AI that scans news stories and press releases looking for opportunities to file a class action lawsuit is one of the most cynical and yet most American startup ideas ever.

Darrow raises $35M for an AI that parses public documents for class action lawsuit potential | TechCrunch

The U.S. is famous (or infamous) for its litigiousness: The country may not have the highest per capita amount of lawsuits (that’s Germany), but it has

Okay, from a random Reddit comment collated with my experience, it seems your contact poster is only sent when you text or phone someone. So at least I didn’t screw up all my contacts’ address books while testing.

Still, even when enabling the “Always Ask” setting (which shows a prompt per-convo before sending my contact poster) it didn’t occur to iOS to ask me *which* of my contact poster variants to send. I can’t believe how half-baked this feature is.

When I read “DALL-E 3 is better at generating text” I did not expect that 😵

Unless I’m misunderstanding something, the only sensible thing to do is… well, to turn off contact posters. But if you’re not gonna, then you’ll want to remove your last name from the poster — because you, a person living in 2023, probably have people in your address book you’ve never intended to give your full name to.

And, again, unless I’m mistaken, it looks like that’s gonna completely remove your last name from *all* of your contacts’ address books 🙃

So… iOS 17’s contact posters are a clusterfuck, right? As far as I can tell, you can’t decide to send a different poster to different people, and, even more annoying, the name you’ve set in your poster will completely overwrite whatever name I associated with your contact information. (The poster creation UI is also very confusing as to what name you’re actually gonna send.) That seems to me extremely disconnected from what real-world users would ever want or expect.

Not me spending the afternoon designing a TTRPG system that requires a Notion database to keep track of stats, instead of working 🤦

We just launched a fun, small app that helps you use your iPad as an HDMI monitor. Meet Orion!

Orion — HDMI Monitor for iPad

Orion: use iPad as an external HDMI monitor.

A few weeks ago I switched from Pocket to to store pages I want to read later, and I’ve been really happy with it. Well designed, very customizable in the way it displays and opens links, and unlike with some competitors I haven’t had any reliability issues (it should be table stakes but I’ve seen major services silently fail to save a link). It’s also a lot more powerful if you want to use it as a permanent link repository, but I don’t need that. — All in One Bookmark Manager

For your inspiration, read later, media and stuff

I liked the puzzles and design of The Talos Principle, but was never too sure what to make of the writing. Well…

“By taking it into a utopian future, it gives you different ways of thinking about it, and now a lot of science fiction doesn't. It's like, here's future racism, exactly like now racism. As if to say, nothing will change, nothing will get better, nor can it. And it’s like, OK, great — why are we telling this story?”

Talos Principle 2 and the quiet subversion of optimistic sci-fi

In terms of sci-fi themes, The Talos Principle 2 is way closer to the original Star Trek than Picard.

Since you unfortunately can’t erase your memory of Outer Wilds and experience it again for the first time, the next best thing is watching someone else discover it. This abbreviated playthrough by Sovietwomble is very entertaining. And sad when appropriate. (I don’t have the patience to watch the whole playthrough in real time, especially with all the audience notifications popping up.)

Do not under any circumstance watch this if you haven’t played the game, of course.

SovietWomble’s Outer wilds Supercut

Least scared hearthian astronaut.SovietWomble’s adventure through AI theories and all kinds of possible things for the Ash Twin Project.This was asked quite …

19 sep. 2023

It did it again, I got a photo this time. About 30 seconds after starting the car and moving off, while doing about 20mph.

I’ve wanted this for years and I’m a little annoyed that they’re restricting it to the latest phones. But Apple gotta Apple.

Supposedly a battery you don’t charge to 100% will last a lot longer. (I use an app called AlDente on Mac to limit charging to 70%, and the Surface Laptop has an option for that at the firmware level. Of course you’ll want to turn that off when you’re planning to actually need the full battery capacity.) (

Attached: 1 image iPhone 15 Models Feature New Setting to Strictly Prevent Charging Beyond 80%

Maquette (PC) — 6/10

Finally played Maquette on Game Pass. I enjoyed the story and metaphors a lot more than I thought I would (it helped that they cast actors way above their own weight) but boy are some of the puzzles frustrating and poorly signposted. Good thing people on the internet figured them out before I tried to.

None of this matters anyway because my Watch is well and truly dead. Either from the OS upgrade, or because I tried one last time to go out without my phone on Sunday. These last few months it always screwed with battery life (with the Watch crashing and restarting several times after a couple hours, then giving up and turning off) but this time it’s not coming back to life.

And I have more urgent needs right now than a new 400€ watch — or 100€ to change the battery on a rather obsolete device.

It’s like the fourth time in eight years they change how you access things on the Watch, and it’s still not right 🤦

I actually like the widget view (it allows me to choose another face than Modular), and I found out in the thread that the number of widgets is higher on more recent devices, but I do find it really annoying that they added so much friction to switching faces.

BenRiceM (

watchOS 10 Pros: - some apps are nicer Cons: - can’t swipe between watch faces - widgets "face" looks weird - limited to 4 widgets?? - using side button for control centre feels completely wrong - no really, you can’t swipe between watch faces

I wondered how Logitech would mistreat the Blue Yeti brand after subsuming it into its gaming division, but this looks very nice. If it had existed a year ago I’d have bought this instead of a Shure plus a Focusrite interface — and saved $100. A dynamic supercardioid mic is a great choice if your environment is noisy or echo-y.

Logitech’s Yeti GX is a new USB mic with RGB lighting

The Yeti GX is RGB-lit for maximum gamer cred.

@cstross See below for the requisite “..speaking as a necromancer” post. I just don’t want to get fined or on the wrong side of a necromancer…

18 sep. 2023

Wow. If they’re hiring Panos Panay, Amazon must have *big* plans for hardware. He didn’t leave Microsoft just to manage Alexa devices and a tablet only used to watch videos.

I’m a bit sad, because I really like the way he developed the Surface line (I even bought a Surface Laptop, before realizing that, no, I just couldn’t go back to Windows) and, whatever he does now, there’s no way I’ll ever want to buy an Amazon computer or smartphone.

Ken Yeung (

Amazon Is Poised to Hire Departing Microsoft Product Chief

I hadn’t noticed this using the beta on my iPad (I have Stage Manager enabled because I like the way it looks, but I don’t actually use several windows at the same time) but the adjustment to prevent windows from disappearing behind one another is really nice.

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