Br. Guy Consolmagno earned his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Planetary Science from MIT and his Ph.D. in Planetary Science from the University of Arizona. He’s been at the Vatican Observatory since 1993 and is currently the director there where his research explores connections between meteorites, asteroids, and the evolution of small solar system bodies. Br. Guy has co-authored two astronomy books as well as popular books such as Would you Baptize and Extraterrestrial?” He is a Jesuit Brother.
We chatted about Br. Guy’s post-graduate work, how he came to be at the Vatican Observatory—and then become the director. He explained why the Vatican has an observatory and how the Catholic Church is not anti-science. Actually he is just part of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences that advises the Pope. And there was much, much more.
BBC News has published a very readable/viewable explanation of biockchains. (Something you should know about.)
Enthusiasts say blockchain could become as disruptive as the internet, comparing the technology to the World Wide Web in the 1990s. At that time, many people were clear it would become important – but few really understood it, or foresaw its potential and limitations.
For the first time in 15 years, John has had a Mac product fail utterly. The experience confirms the observations of others.
At Roughly Drafted, Daniel Eran Dilger, diagnoses a recent assertion by Bill Gates regarding Microsoft, iOS and Android.
As Apple prepares the release of iOS 13 and splits off the new iPadOS 13 for specialized mobile tablets, Microsoft’s former chief executive Bill Gates mused this week that it would have been the “natural thing” for Microsoft to have been the “standard non-Apple phone platform.” But he’s wrong, here’s why.
A recent article prompted John to pull together a reference page for some fundamental changes in the structure of macOS Catalina.
Business Insider, with the pending departure of Apple’s Jony Ive, takes the opportunity to summarize the other senior executives who have left Apple recently. Who they are, what they did, and why they left. Photos provided of almost all.
Mike Bombich is the founder and president of Bombich Software, the developer of Carbon Copy Cloner. That’s a backup app for the Mac that has saved the day for many users. He’s a former Apple employee.
In this timely post-WWDC show, Mike joins me to explain the structure of APFS drives and the new read-only System files in macOS Catalina. He explained new features of volumes in macOS 10.15, especially how the System is isolated from the Data volume (which contains /Users). He also explained the new firmlinks that tie these two volumes together, making them appear as one. Finally, Mike explained how Carbon Copy Cloner external drives can no longer be HFS+ in Catalina but must become APFS.
The long, sad tale of iTunes is recounted in this extensive, charming essay. It provides us with many lessons to learn about Apple.
Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman and Ian King report:
Apple Inc. hired one of ARM Holdings Inc.’s top chip engineers as the iPhone maker looks to expand its own chip development to more powerful devices, including the Mac, and new categories like a headset.
The company hired Mike Filippo in May for a chip architect position, according to his LinkedIn profile.
For Apple to divest the Mac of Intel CPUs while maintaining X86 compatibility will require some serious engineering skill. This looks like one step in the process.
There are popular products in Apple’s lineup of consumer products. But the resurgence of the Mac suggests that Apple realizes that scientists won’t be doing research that changes the world on an iPad.
At WWDC 2019, Apple announced that macOS Catalina would reside in its own read-only volume. Security is greatly enhanced.
It could be a political move, a ploy, amidst tariff tensions between the U.S. and China. Or it could be something else. USA Today reports:
The U.S. is considering a requirement that next-generation 5G cellular technology for domestic use be made outside of China, the Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday, citing sources.
John Kheit is a New York attorney and a regular contributor to The Mac Observer. We share many common interests, including the 4K/UHD/HDR TV revolution, 8K TV and displays, Wi-Fi/5G technologies and the state of Apple.
In this special post-WWDC show, we chatted about author Kheit’s view of the new Mac Pro. He believes that while the 2019 Mac Pro will meet the needs of most technical and creative professionals, Apple also betrayed an important group of influencers, the Mac enthusiasts by not offering a lower cost model. We discussed various ways Apple could have achieved that goal, and that might suggest a future variation of the current model. John K. has strong feelings about this Mac and wasn’t shy about expressing them.
It’s been presumed that future Macs using A-series CPUs would, via hardware and software magic, maintain Intel X86 compatibility. Maybe not.
Previously, Apple updated the firmware for the AirPort Extreme. Now, the older, 802.11n, AirPort Base Station and its siblings have also been updated.
Firmware update 7.8.1 improves the security of your base station and is recommended for all Apple 802.11n Wi-Fi base stations including AirPort Express, AirPort Extreme and AirPort Time Capsule.
…if you really want a reminder of just how dumb everything is in 2019, check out this video from GE, which recently went viral on Twitter. GE even had the audacity to call it a “smart” light bulb.
A video from GE demonstrates some really bad design decisions. Really bad.
Mel Magazine writes:
A generation raised on mp3s and Spotify are collecting [CD] discs like vinyl — but for reasons that have almost nothing to do with the music.
Did you throw all yours away?
Disney+ won’t launch until November 12, but it’s already putting strategic pressure on Apple TV+. Apple has found itself in a bind.
Apple aimed the new Mac Pro at the most demanding of all high-end users, so we went to users like that and asked what they thought. Video editors, medical experts and the Department of Defense are all considering this new Mac closely.
Hearing the reactions and purchase plans from pro users carries enormous weight.
John, who often obsesses over all things video, made the leap to 4K/UHD TV long ago. But he’s not making the leap to a 4K/UHD Blu-ray player. He tells us why.