The Apple Thread
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    Argh, irritating. Cheers, Elm.

    OK, another question; how do I turn off the backspace key taking me back a page in Safari? It's pretty easy to turn off in Firefox and Chrome but I can't work it out in Safari.

    If I ever find the guy who decided backspace should take you back in your history, I'll punch him in the nuts.
    From your Taiwan correspondent.
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    Could you not just download the update then delete the app?

    Or re-download the app, then the update, then delete the app?
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    I'm guessing that way it'll just come up again next time there's an update. I guess I want some way of marking the app as something I'm no longer interested in.
    From your Taiwan correspondent.
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    Are you sure you haven't deleted the app after the update was published but not installed?
  • Wait, hang on, I don't get updates for apps I've deleted.  Are you?
  • Ok. Zite is awesome.
    I've grabbed Paper by 53 as well. It's highly recommended and looks great.

    Need to do some research into must have iPad apps.
    Town name: Downton - Name: Nick - Native Fruit: Apples
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    Elmlea wrote:
    Wait, hang on, I don't get updates for apps I've deleted.  Are you?

    Yeah. I tried Sparrow Mail, decided I didn't like it, uninstalled it. The latest version still shows up in App Store's 'Updates' list.
    From your Taiwan correspondent.
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    Five must know commands for the Terminal.

    Thought people might find these handy. Enjoy tinkering in the Terminal.
    From your Taiwan correspondent.
  • Blue Swirl
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    Steve Wozniak calls for Apple products to be more open.

    I think this'd be brilliant, if Apple could be persuaded to loosen their iron grip on their products. One of the reasons OS X is so stable and powerful is that it's built on top of open technology. If clever people could tinker with the iDevices without having to jailbreak, then I reckon the jailbreak community would just go away over night.

    If you're wondering what potential benefit a more open platform could have, just remember that a lot of the improvements to iOS came from the jailbreaking community; the ability to put apps into folders was a feature that first appeared on jailbroken devices, for just one example. The OS X world has benefited, too. The notifications that are built into Mountain Lion are basically Apple copying Growl. From my point of view as a scientist, OS X's UNIX under-pinnings is a god send. It means I can install stuff like MacPorts and do some really hardcore number crunching.

    I really hope Tim Cook is less of a control freak than Steve Jobs was. I would love it if they introduced Gate Keeper into iOS - flip one switch in Settings and boom, you can install software from sources other than the App Store. If that were to happen, I'd finally cave and get an iPad.
    From your Taiwan correspondent.
  • Thing is, it's completely against the whole ethos that Jobs tried to install in the company, and I feel a bit wobbly about Woz coming out and saying this now.  Having just read Jobs' biography, they had their first minor argument about this with the Apple II.  Woz wanted to sell it with lots of expansion room, as befits his background as a fiddler and hacker.  Jobs wanted to package the whole thing so it wasn't just a bunch of blokes with beards in garages who'd buy it.

    As Apple strengthened, Jobs kept coming back to this.  They're the only company who sell the whole package, from hardware to software to support, without you needing various people's input.  And it works!  They're perfectly designed for people like me who are happy to pay for a laptop, a desktop, a phone and a tablet, and just want them all to work together quite happily without complaint, and have no inclination whatsoever to buy something outside the app store nor tinker with something at root level.

    If you want an open tablet, there're a million Android choices, likewise with phones.  If you want an open OS, there are millions of Linux clones.  A couple of times this year, Apple have slipped into the position of the most valuable company ever in the history of the planet (as someone on Twitter mentioned, it won't be long until Apple the company sue apple the fruit for the rights to the name, and win); they're not doing ANYTHING wrong, and opening up their kit to appease Woz's comments won't do anything to improve them.  In fact, there's more to lose; an iPad running dodgy software is still an iPad and there are all sorts of implications of tacit acceptance by Apple.  They don't want people crying that their hardware is broken because they installed and ran uncertified software.

    The argument that good things came from jail breaking doesn't work.  After all, folders/notifications/Growl ARE in iOS5 and OSX10.8, so who cares if they weren't bodged into them by random 3rd parties from the start?  I'd rather wait for Apple to look at what the jail breakers are doing and choose their own way to integrate it.  If that means I have a bunch of people complaining that Android had feature X ages ago, who cares; iOS suits me absolutely perfectly and I don't mind in the slightest that it took longer to filter through.

    So I see no benefit and a few potential downsides.  Steve Jobs had it right, and the world's most valuable technology company, one of its most recognisable and most aspirational brands, is there as his legacy and proof that his system worked.  I've found a couple of quotes from him about this...

    "Apple's the only company left that designs the whole widget.  Hardware, software, developer relations, marketing.  It turns out that, in my opinion, is Apple's greatest strategic advantage.  We didn't have a plan, so it looked like this was a tremendous deficit.  But with a plan, it's Apple's core strategic advantage, if you believe that there's still room for innovation in this industry, which I do, because Apple can innovate faster than anyone else."

    "One company makes the software.  The other makes the hardware... It's not working.  The innovation can't happen fast enough.  The integration isn't seamless enough.  No-one takes responsibility for the user interface.  It's a mess."

    "Also, our solution encompasses operating system software, server software, application software, and hardware.  Apple is the only company in the world that has all that under one roof.  We can invent a complete solution that works- and take responsibility for it."

    Apple right now must be the purest example of "if it ain't broke" in history.
  • I agree. Apple's strength comes from the fact they are massive control freaks (although of course "Apple's the only company left that designs the whole widget" is nonsense).
  • Said in a 2005 interview, I think.
  • Was certainly nonsense back then, too.
  • Some greater accommodation of Linux on Apple hardware for dual-booting would be welcome. It can be a bit of a piss around at the moment. And less enforced nudging onto the latest OS. 

    Apart from that, I agree with the sentiment that there are plenty of alternatives for more open software. I love Apple stuff because its Unix with an easy and sexual UI and GUI slapped on the top. And it has custom hardware so no driver issues.
  • If they open it up more then they sure will have to drop the whole "Mac's just work!" mythos.
    I'm falling apart to songs about hips and hearts...
  • Blue Swirl
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    MattyJ wrote:
    If they open it up more then they sure will have to drop the whole "Mac's just work!" mythos.

    I'll reply to this as it seems to represent the general feeling of people's replies.

    In short, people don't seem to understand what's meant by "open", nor do people seem to have grasped that "can be tinkered with" does not mean "hard to use".

    I'll use OS X as an example. OS X is actually a really open system, because it's built on top of FreeBSD UNIX. The core of OS X is fully free (as in freedom) software, that you can tinker with, and redistribute.

    OS X is also supremely user friendly. The power to mess around with the guts is there if you want it, it's not hidden away. I play with the Terminal, I play with programming languages and installing the X11 software, Xcode and all that jazz. My Mum, with her Mac Mini, just doesn't do that. The fact that it's an open system she can fiddle with just never occurs to her. She just answers her email, browses the web, whatever.

    Hence, OS X is open, very tinkerable, very powerful, and still user friendly. It still "just works", and this is because of its open nature, not despite its open nature. It's open nature means that clever fixes for problems can be found by anyone, not just Apple. iOS is rock solid because it is based on OS X, as OS X is based on FreeBSD.

    iOS could be the same. There's nothing stopping Apple from doing this. They could, in the next update, just make it so that you can install apps from sources other than the App Store. The average bloke in the street won't even notice, and if they do, I doubt they'll care. They'll keep using the App Store because it's right there, in front of them, and is a supremely easy and beautiful thing to use. They could do the same with the hardware. Why shouldn't you be able to open up your iPad as easily as you can unscrew the bottom of your Mac Mini? Again, the average bloke in the street isn't going to crack open his shiny new iPad and start fucking with it, any more than I'm going to open up the bonnet of my car and try and put a turbo in it (but I'd like the option there if I decide to try and learn how). But the clever guy who wants to tinker and learn, he might just come up with something interesting, which Apple can then build off. (Remember that Notifications is basically a rip off of Growl, and folders were originally only for jailbreakers.)

    And you know what? The Apple II was designed by Woz. The tinkerer. The guy who plays with hardware and comes up with interesting stuff. Would the Apple II really have been worse if Woz had got his way? I don't see how. How would it have been worse to have more upgrade options there if you wanted them? Woz made the Apple the great machine it was. Jobs just discovered how to sell it, how to give it that top to bottom polish that Apple can give a machine because they design every part of it.

    People also seem to have got the idea that Apple is successful because their stuff is closed. Again, you're ignoring the history of how Apple got here. Why did people switch to the Mac back when they released the original iMac and OS X? Because it was easy to use. Why did programmers start creating awesome software for the Mac? Why is the Mac more secure, more stable, and more powerful than Windows? Because the core of OS X is open. They're just closing stuff up now because they've got to the top of the pile, because they don't have to be open any more to attract programmers. People code for iOS because of the money, now, more than anything else. So the idea that "Apple stuff being closed has lead to their success" is bollocks. They got the ball rolling with open technologies.

    Now, I'm not saying that they shouldn't have the Apple eco system in place. I like the Apple eco system, for the most part. I quite like the Mac App Store, but I also like having other options. I like getting my music from iTunes, but I also have a lot of CDs left to rip. Do you see how these things have been made better because they're open? There's no way I'd own an iPod if it could only play music from the iTunes store. There's no way I'd own a Mac if the App Store was the only way of getting software. (In fact, due to the way the Mac App Store works, a lot of the software I rely on for my work would be simply unattainable - you're not allowed to put software on the MAS if you're allowed to share it, hence why no Firefox on the App Store.)

    Apple got a great operating system by building it on top of open software. The reason I fell in love with my first Mac was because it was more open than Windows, and still easier to use. The reason I haven't got an iPad is because, while they are wonderful things to use, Apple has more say on what it runs than I do. The iPad wouldn't suddenly become shit because I could install Firefox on it. I'd probably grab some apps from the App Store, too. It's win-win; Apple sell one more iPad, I get to play with it's guts. As long as I'm not doing anything illegal, I don't see why I shouldn't be able to play my toys. :)

    I know this post is massive, but I really think it'd be great if Apple stuff was a little bit more open. For those of us that want to tinker. It wouldn't change anything as far as the average user is concerned. I don't see how it would be a detriment at all.

    To leave off, I'll tell you a little story. ;) When I owned an iPhone, I noticed that the torch apps on the App Store would get dimmer when the light went dimmer (like a Mac does when the light changes, so as to not blind you). I thought this was a bit silly for something that's meant to be a torch. Plus, I thought it'd be great if it got brighter when the screen was facing down, i.e., away from the user, as they're trying to illuminate something. Ah ha! Great idea for an app, the first really good torch app. So I looked around for books or websites that'd teach me to build apps. I very quickly find that Apple (at the time, it may have changed) didn't allow developers access to the brightness settings, at least in the way I wanted to use them. The closed nature of iOS meant I couldn't do something clever. It meant that iPhone users were denied a torch app that did what it was meant to do. How did being closed make things better, in this case?

    Apple stuff is brilliant because they work on every aspect of it, from over all hardware aesthetics, right down to the tiniest details of the UI. Making it more open (in terms of both hardware and software) would not change this. More open Apple stuff? Count me the fuck in. The tinkerers of today are the Wozes of tomorrow. And where would Jobs be without Woz? Trying to sell empty computer cases, that's where.
    From your Taiwan correspondent.
  • Blue Swirl wrote:
    I very quickly find that Apple (at the time, it may have changed) didn't allow developers access to the brightness settings, at least in the way I wanted to use them. The closed nature of iOS meant I couldn't do something clever. It meant that iPhone users were denied a torch app that did what it was meant to do. How did being closed make things better, in this case? Apple stuff is brilliant because they work on every aspect of it, from over all hardware aesthetics, right down to the tiniest details of the UI. Making it more open (in terms of both hardware and software) would not change this.
    You can access the brightness through the API now. Apple's philosophy is that they are better placed to make decisions than others. With screen brightness, the idea was almost definitely to save on battery life. 

    Many of the early iphone's software limitations were due to this constraint. They didn't want devs pissing round with the whole thing and producing apps that sucked the battery power out as it was such a precious resource. Or manually have to filter out a lot of the worst practices during app submission. As battery life has improved, certain constraints have been lifted. 

    The opposite of this is Android. Apps running in the background and draining the life out of stuff is a big problem there. It makes the installation of an app that kills other apps a necessity. I'm speaking from experience here. I've had persistent problems with Android battery life, none with an iphone. It's not all down to screen brightness, but background processes. Another thing Apple doesn't allow. 

    If you and other devs had been allowed to tinker with processes like brightness early on when battery life was such a massive problem, then more consumers that have had zero iphone problems would have experienced the same problems I had with Android. And what's the real benefit? A slightly better torch. What advantages has Android really gained from Apple with their open approach to app development?

    I think its reasonable to assume that a lot of Apple's success is from its strictness. It restricts use of stuff that 90% of people don't care about to improve their experience. 

    I'm not making any speech here about how wonderful the approach is or anything. Just their approach up to now and why its been successful. And why they're probably loath to start wholesale reforms.
  • And an alternative app store, as well as cutting into their profits, would open the backdoor to malware. Another thing that Apple has an excellent reputation for.
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    Whilst I respect Woz and always have time for his opinions, this is a terrible one.

    iOS can already be jailbroken, so if users want to they can go down that road.

    Open it up and it'll be about 30 seconds before these 3rd party stores are flooded with rip-off apps and malware, just like Android.

    I'm fairly indifferent on the walled garden approach. It has up and downsides but has undeniably served them very well so far, copying Android seems pointless.

    You'd have to be very much an old hippy tinkerer as opposed to a modern business man to give up even some of that nice 30% skim they take from the store.
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    I'll plonk this here that after Bootcamping for Diablo 3 for a while now I've only just dug up the Trackpad ++ package that makes gesture stuff work far better in Win7. Trying to go from OSX smooth swishyness to Win7 basic clickerry had been getting right on ma teats.

    I use a mouse for Daiblo-ing so that's all ok but trying to fart around in browsers and whatnot with inverted scrolling, no swipe back/forward and the rest has finally pushed me to hunt down some plugin things. 

    Here's to hoping they didn't install too many keyloggers, malwares and the rest. Just a fyi for any other Pro/Air users round these parts.
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  • Ok.
    I'm looking to get a word processor for my iPad. Figured the commute is a better place for updating my CV than under watchful eyes at work.
    Seems Pages is the best thing to get, but I've looked at Office² HD as well, and am tempted by that because of the spreadsheet functionality.

    Anyone have anything else I should look at and possibly gravitate towards instead?
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  • @Blue Swirl or anyone else that is clued up on Terminal.

    At my old place my mate setup a server for movies etc. I changed something using terminal so that on start up my mac automatically searches for the IP of the server to connect to it. network stylee.

    This was great at the time but now I have moved out it is kind of annoying that I get a 'Cannot connect' message every time I boot.
    I cant remember what it was I entered into Terminal to get it doing this, any ideas?
  • So, getting an iPad again as I mess around with my iPhone leaving little battery power, look coward to using it with the smart glass app and because I can get a good deal off them. So. iPad 3 at £330 or iPad 2 at £270. It'll be mainly used for the above as well as reading and movies. I say the 3rd gen as its only £60, however part of me says that may be £60 wasted.

    Anybody got arguments for/against?
  • I'd say for £60 it's probably worth it if only for re-sale value, but I never upgraded to 3 because the better screen, when I had no issues with 2's, didn't outweigh the thicker size and lengthier re-charge time.
  • What's this about the latest iPad 2 actually being faster than the new iPad 3?
    Something to do with the screen on the iPad 3 taking more CPU resources and an upgrade to the iPad 2's internals or summit.
    Live= sgt pantyfire    PSN= pantyfire
  • Don't think it's faster, but certainly a little thicker and gets a bit hotter (if the internet is to be believed). Battery life may not be quite so good also. Real world I'm sure you wouldn't even notice.

    Trade off is you get an amazing screen and more grunt.
  • The new iPad does get very hot with much prolonged use, a suitable back cover means it doesn't affect your hands. 
    The iPad is still extremely speedy and the screen is amazing.
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  • The new MacBook Pro with the retina screen looks tasty. Anyone know what else was announced tonight at the Apple conference?
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    Only £2300 for a 15" laptop? I'll have two!
  • The new MacBook Pro with the retina screen looks tasty. Anyone know what else was announced tonight at the Apple conference?

    Yar,  just ordered one for work.

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