eXtensions - Wednesday 12 February 2020
Cassandra - Midweek Review: Hints from the Oscars and other sources about Apple product improvements
By Graham K. Rogers
While Apple has responded to the problems with some of the keyboards - I had the one on my 13" MacBook Pro replaced for free, along with the screen and a battery - and the new 16" MacBook Pro has a newer design, those older models do not, and Waititi also mentioned the shoulder ache with the iMac he experienced. While Apple gains much publicity from product placement (deliberate and accidental), these widely-quoted comments should cause much serious introspection at Cupertino. I hate to include the Steve Jobs would have. . . meme, but the CEO should have picked up the phone the moment that comment went out, everyone would have been called in on Monday morning and heads would roll.
I do not understand why Siri only has a limited availability in some countries: that is an Apple policy and no amount of asking would elicit an answer. I mentioned this in an Apple store in the UK and to the Helper who was guiding me through my iPhone Photos sync problem. In both cases the response was sort of "Oh. Yeah" followed by silence. I can use the feature to turn on my lights (HomeKit) but not to change programs on my AppleTV. I have to use that slippery manual control instead.
Microsoft and others made the mistake with some of their devices by only rolling them out to USA and a couple of other countries, and suffered low sales. With most devices Apple releases are worldwide, although often not at the same time. But not HomePod, not full Siri.
Once his Apple credentials are sort of established (an iPhone 8 for Heaven's sake) we start with the worry beads and 5G. Perhaps some areas may not have this, so that would mean failure for Apple? And a similar failure for any other handset maker of course, although there is only mention of Apple in the main content (like me he owned an Android device once).
The Center for the National Interest is a right-wing think-tank established by Richard Nixon in 1994 to serve as a voice for strategic realism in U.S. foreign policy. Kazianis should stick to foreign policy. Anyone remember what happened to Nixon?
Apple iPhone 11 Pro - Image courtesy of Apple
When the problem occurred with photo-synchronization on my iPhone 11 Pro I initially went to the Apple Store where I was able to outline my problem in English, although the first analysis there merely had me repeating what I had already tried at home. I was later contacted by phone by a Helper from Australia who also went through similar questions more to familiarize herself with the problem, before handing me over to a more senior helper who over the next few weeks, bit by bit, checked, collected data and eventually handed the problem over to engineers.
They examined a log from a 24-hour period of Photos activity on my iPhone and within a few days, the synchronization started and I have had no problems since. The time, since the synchronization ceased with the update to iOS 13.2, to when it restarted was a couple of days short of 3 months. Although it took a long time, the care in which the steps were taken and recorded, was nice to experience: it felt that someone cared. How much this cost Apple, with staff and resources costs, I dread to think; but the cost to me was zero. That is after all what one has (and expects) when buying such high end products.
I did contact the helper one more time to thank him for the assistance (and fix). I also tried to find out what the problem had been. According to what he told me, he did not even know as the engineers who made the fix, did not pass this information back. Having experienced the compartmentalisation that exists at Apple several time in the past, this is not really surprising, but it woul have been nice to know.
Once I went back to Mojave that cleared up; but there were other oddities that had appeared. I keep a copy of my website in iCloud (the whole thing is in a folder in Documents), but access was a problem with Catalina. To prepare for an eventual update (it is at 10.1.5.3 now so should be OK), I changed the name of that folder from Sites, which may have conflicted with the default Sites folder, to something else.
I had also experienced some difficulty with Time Machine on the MacBook Pro, but not with the Mac mini which is running Catalina perfectly as far as I can see. I am not alone with Time Machine problems as hoakley on The Eclectic Light Company, writes that this important back up method, "has serious bugs" in Catalina 10.15.3 and recommends that users should consider an alternative, like Carbon Copy Cloner, SuperDuper!, or ChronoSync as a secondary method: belt and braces of course, but redundancy is never a bad thing with critical systems.
When I was reasonably happy, I copied the text to BBEdit where I mark up with HTML code, and then also changed to three separate articles, each focused on a specific medium, but with several references to the other types of input. Even in this final form, I was making changes to the text, and when I added images (some of which I had saved back in November) that also meant some changes to written content as well.
It is all rather subjective and uses ideas from my own move from film to digital to DSLR and iPhones, and now back to film, so while they were all separate, I use all three media, as well as computers for scanning and for manipulation of images from all three. I am not professional, but take photographs (and scan and edit) because that is what I enjoy doing. Sometimes along the way, I also take some pictures that I like.
I had seen these online and wondered about trying them, but as they were available in Bangkok, I bought one of each and ran some film. I will be writing about this separately, but loved the disposable camera (despite all the problems of disposal and the environment), but was less excited by the reusable camera. As well as one of the rolls of Kentmere, I also tried some Fujicolor 400 to see how that went.
Harman disposable camera (left) and reusable camera
Graham K. Rogers teaches at the Faculty of Engineering, Mahidol University in Thailand. He wrote in the Bangkok Post, Database supplement on IT subjects. For the last seven years of Database he wrote a column on Apple and Macs. After 3 years writing a column in the Life supplement, he is now no longer associated with the Bangkok Post. He can be followed on Twitter (@extensions_th)
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