April 10, 2014

Article: Requiem for Windows XP

Earlier this week, Microsoft officially stopped supporting Windows XP. Although it continues to function as expected and is installed on millions of computers worldwide, it’s ancient—it came from an era before notable gadgets like the iPod or RAZR, where a computer was truly the only way to get real work done. Considering all of this, it is truly amazing how the Windows XP’s customers kept it popular much longer than most computer operating systems typically last…

April 9, 2014

Link: Apple Human Interface VP Greg Christie Retiring ☍

Matthew Panzarino:

According to multiple sources inside and outside the company, Christie’s exit has been known for weeks — and planned for even longer. His stepping aside has been designed to allow for a transition of leadership inside the Human Interface group. Christie worked under Forstall for many years, and there may have been plenty of times he didn’t agree with Ive, but there has reportedly been a distinct lack of drama in this transition.

If there was any ill-will between Christie and Ive, it doesn’t appear to have taken the form of any open conflict and a flare-up of friction was apparently not behind this exit. We hear Christie will stay at Apple a bit longer working on “special projects,” in a similar manner to former SVP of Technology Bob Mansfield, until he exits. From what we understand, Christie was recently moved into a role with no direct reports, which is often the harbinger of retirement at Apple.

Christie brought a lot to the table over the years, from making OS X look both visually appealing and professionally restrained, and giving iOS obvious enough cues to help bring the idea of a smartphone to the masses. Some early reports pointed at clashes between Christie and Jonathan Ive as the reason for his departure, but it seems to be much more amicable. Still, this will obviously be a major loss for Apple.

April 8, 2014

“Both skeuomorphic and flat extremes have uniquely beautiful and useful qualities, but merging the two styles allows us to leverage the strengths of both.”

Link: Twitter Redesign Looks a Lot Like Facebook ☍

Vlad Savov:

Visuals have been growing increasingly important for Twitter and the new design pushes them even further to the fore, with larger background images and more prominent profile pictures. There’s an unmissable similarity to Facebook’s profile pages, with the user’s photos and friends both being tucked into a tile layout on the lower left.

Just…no. I understand Twitter needs to find ways to make money, but they need to stop fiddling with the design—it’s losing focus much like the every-few-months rework of Facebook.

April 7, 2014

Link: The Ultimate Guide to Solving iOS Battery Drain ☍

Scotty Loveless:

I worked on the Genius Bar for almost two years, and the most difficult issue to solve was short battery life. It was extremely difficult to pinpoint the exact reason why someone’s battery was draining.

I made it my mission to discover the specific reasons for iOS battery drainage. This article is a product of my years of research and anecdotal evidence I gathered in the hundreds of Genius Bar appointments I took during my time as a Genius and iOS technician, as well as testing on my personal devices and the devices of my friends.

As someone who gets asked about battery drain on iOS devices by friends and people at work, this article summarizes a lot of tips I’ve been sharing for years. I use the Airplane-Mode-on-with-Wi-Fi-re-enabled trick when I go to games at Bankers Life Fieldhouse, as it has pretty good Wi-Fi, but basically kills any sort of cellular signal coming in.

“ isn’t just a data pipeline, it’s a focus group.”