August 5, 2020

Snippet: Phil Schiller Advances to Apple Fellow ☍

Apple PR:

Apple today announced that Phil Schiller will become an Apple Fellow, continuing a storied career that began at Apple in 1987. In this role, which reports to Apple CEO Tim Cook, Schiller will continue to lead the App Store and Apple Events. Greg (Joz) Joswiak, a longtime leader within the Product Marketing organization, will join the executive team as senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing.

August 3, 2020

Snippet: Astronauts Use AirDrop to Solve Issue During Spaceflight ☍

Zac Hall for Space Explored (via Six Colors):

The issue with updating the digital timeline app was later determined to mostly likely be caused by a caching issue when saving an update. SpaceX eventually requested that astronaut Doug Hurley take screenshots of his day timeline as a backup in case his app experienced the same caching issue. Then each astronaut was instructed to briefly turn on wifi to enable the iPad’s AirDrop feature for wirelessly sending the screenshots between iPads.

No, it’s not a promotional tie-in with second season of For All Mankind.

July 17, 2020

Snippet: NWSL Fans Are Online, Organized, and Refuse to Be Ignored ☍

Nicole Wetsman for The Verge:

Despite being arguably the best and most competitive women’s professional soccer league in the world and home to global stars like Rose Lavelle, Christine Sinclair, and Debinha, coverage of the NWSL is limited. Women’s sports receive only 4 percent of sports media coverage overall, and in May 2020, only 7 percent of sports stories in major US newspapers focused on women, according to an analysis in the sports newsletter Power Plays. Two prior attempts at a women’s pro league in the US, both of which folded after three seasons, faced similar issues. Major sports outlets seemed to only pay attention if something was going wrong.

Without mainstream attention, NWSL fans and supporters have turned to social media platforms like Tumblr and Twitter to build their own coverage and push for the type of recognition and attention they know the league needs. “The league has never really been on TV. So you’re watching games online,” says Meg Linehan, who covers the NWSL and the US Women’s National Team (USWNT) for The Athletic. “If I’m going to look up something about women’s soccer that I don’t know, honestly, sometimes my first stop is still the Twitter search bar.”

I’ll be honest, I was not expecting to see a story about the NWSL come across my RSS reader this morning (and it’s been awhile since I’ve written about it here). I’ve been enjoying the Challenge Cup, as it’s been a nice distraction from our current hellscape. CBS’s presentations have been really well done (aside from The Glare™), and it’s looking like the whole thing can be categorized as a success.

There’s been some ridiculous fun on Twitter and Reddit during games that probably seems even better due to just a little bit of quaran-time madness setting in. The fact that so much of the fandom feels generally pleasant, and even that the commentators are getting into it gives it a unique feel that I doubt we’ll see with the other bubbled-sports when they start soon.

In the meantime, if you’re curious, the knockout round has just started today and the #1-seeded North Carolina Courage were eliminated by the #8-seeded Portland Thorns. The Courage were the 2018 and 2019 champs, so it’s kind of like if the New England Patriots or Golden State Warriors got eliminated early. CBS All Access has a free trial, so you can check out the remaining games and the final will be on regular CBS (despite not really liking the new branding, I’m still pulling for the Reign).

Snippet: How to Build a 5-Acre WiFi Network ☍

Matt Haughey:

Last year I moved to a house with some property, and it had a separate garage a hundred feet or so away from the main house. At first, I tried Netgear Orbi mesh networking points to connect them but I couldn’t reliably get one wireless point in my house’s window to connect to the other point in the garage. So I started doing some research, and going down some rabbit holes.

Remember 20 years ago when Maker Magazine was new and all about building pringles-can wifi antennas? While the idea is the same, there’s a ton of great, cheap, reliable, fast wireless points these days that have taken that concept further. Plus, you can buy them on Amazon and set them up easily with your computer or phone.

As someone that has mostly gone all-in on Ubiquiti, and used both their UniFi products at home and work, and AirMax at work, this is a very approachable introduction for anyone looking to expand their network over a larger area.

July 8, 2020

Snippet: iMessage and Phone Numbers as Identifiers ☍

John Gruber:

One last bit of behind-the-scenes follow-up regarding the production of The Talk Show Remote From WWDC 2020. For help with my audio setup, I worked with Zach Phillips. Phillips is local to Philly, an audio engineering ace, has worked with Sandwich before — and, it turns out, I linked to his blog back in April 2012.

Even better, he was right and I was wrong. Although he was wrong too. It’s actually an interesting post worth revisiting.

This has been something that I had long forgotten, but it is an interesting thing to revisit. For me, iMessage mostly augmented SMS (too many friends without smartphones at the time), but eventually blue bubbles took over and it also replaced AIM. Coming at it from the side of phone-based messaging, it made sense to me that it would use a phone number and I still go that route to this day by default.

I also think it might have to do that many of my friends are more likely to have my phone number than email address, and that will still work even if they switch away from iPhones. Still, it’s an interesting consideration and I wonder how many people are email-first for iMessage instead.