May 25, 2015

Link: Filling the Green Circle ☍

Marco Arment:

Ever since getting the Apple Watch, not only have I been getting more consistent exercise, but I’m pushing myself further. I take more walks, and I walk faster and further than ever before. I’ve been walking Hops around the same streets for four years, but now I’ve been discovering new streets and paths just to extend our walking distance and try to beat my previous walks.

I can echo this—although this weekend was mostly a vacation in lethargy, I have been forcing myself to fill the circles. Standing seems to come the easiest, followed by movement. Still, I find myself trying to complete as many as I can, and I have even adjusted the movement goal to be more challenging. I enjoy its subtlety in getting me to change my behavior for the better.

Link: The Hockenberry Flip ☍

Craig Hockenberry explains why he flipped his Apple Watch around (and I liked the name David Sparks gave this method):

One of the first things I noticed about using the Apple Watch was that pressing the digital crown on my left wrist required a fairly awkward position of the index finger on my right hand. While pressing on the crown without another finger to provide resistance, the strap twisted uncomfortably. When you try to get your thumb on the opposite side of the case to provide support, you either cover the face or resort to contortions. […]

Apple never adds settings without a good reason. The inclusion of a preference for the crown position is a pretty clear indication that someone important knew that this was an ergonomically superior choice. But it’s also one that goes against horologic convention: Apple’s desire for this device to be visually appealing won out over ergonomics. I’ll be the first to admit that the “reverse crown” looks weird.

I’m giving this a try and have found that in a few instances, it’s taking some getting used to, but I haven’t noticed any ill-effects so far. Clicking and double-clicking the Digital Crown seems easier.

May 19, 2015

Link: Hanging Up My Virtual Pen ☍

Ted Landau:

At the risk of sounding melodramatic, I began to feel that these were all signs of a “torch-passing” moment. There is a generation of tech writers (of which I am a member) whose careers date back to the 80’s. We still vividly recall “highlight reel” moments from prior decades — like Steve Jobs unveiling the original Mac or the Boston Macworld Expo keynote that kicked off Steve’s triumphant return to Apple. For much of a younger generation, these events are tantamount to ancient history.

Tinkering with old (at the time) Macs in my younger years led me to many Macworld articles and books from Landau. Although his name isn’t as well known to those who came to Apple after the iPod, it will be sad to see his name disappear from a regular byline.

Link: The Accessibility of Apple Watch Bands ☍

Steven Aquino for MacStories:

What applies to iPhones and iPads also applies to Apple Watch. In the context of the Watch, the hardware that is most crucial, accessibility-wise, are the bands. To folks like me who suffer from motor delays, the ability to successfully get the Apple Watch on and off is as key to a positive user experience as the quality of the software it runs.

This is a fascinating read, especially as I often thought of accessibility in the context of software.

May 11, 2015

Link: Pedometer++ Hits 1 Million Downloads ☍

_David Smith:

Pedometer++ has become one of the most important apps in my portfolio and probably the app I’m now most widely known for.

It also carries with it an attribute that I’ve never experienced with any of my other projects—a sense of doing genuine good. I have had countless reports of how it has help people get healthier, recover from injury or lose weight. These are the stories that really impact me as a developer. The thought that something I made in my basement can have extended and improved people’s lives is truly remarkable.

I love Pedometer++ and have suggested it to a number of friends and family members. Although it doesn’t have a place on my home screen these days, it is on the first screen of widgets in Notification Center for quick access. If you don’t have it, download it. If you have downloaded and enjoy it, use the purchase function to send some cash David’s way.

May 9, 2015

“How can our all-male tech podcast get more female listeners?”

May 6, 2015

Link: Accessibility and the Apple Watch ☍

Molly Watt shares her experiences with the Apple Watch, with a very different perspective than most technology reviewers:

However, I was curious as Apple products have been more than just up market gadgets to me, they really have been my access to the many things most take for granted but that those of us with deafblindness, particularly struggle with.

Link: Craig Hockenberry on discoveryd ☍

Craig Hockenberry:

So, Mom, it’s time to stop reading. I’m pissed off and you know how I get when that happens.

In case you’re wondering what I’m talking about, look at this shit. A network process using 100% of the CPU, WiFi disconnecting at random times, and names, names (1), names (2), names (4). All caused by a crappy piece of software called discoveryd.

Apple really needs to sort this out instead of new music streaming services or “professional” iPads or whatever other rumor du jour is going on. I’ve also seen some of these issues firsthand and it’s really getting hard to make excuses for this buggy garbage.