A Stellar Concept Video for iOS 11 and the Rebirth of the Mac

· · Particle Debris

2016 MacBook Pro

The Particle Debris item of the week isn’t a written article. Instead it’s a concept video, a joint effort by Federico Vittici at MacStories and designer Sam Beckett in the UK. The reason it’s so cool is because it punctuates the hunger we all have for a new iOS on the iPad that leaves the past behind, truly enables and excites. John is excited, and you will be too. Plus: rebirth of the Mac.

The Cloud Is a Lie

· · Devil's Advocate

The cloud is a lie.  John Kheit argues that if you believe in the cloud, you’re not only a sucker, you’ve been brainwashed into accepting your lot as a 2nd class digital citizen. According to him, the cloud is a lie because it convinces you of at least two Stockholm syndrome things: (1) you don’t deserve to own or control your own data, and (2) security for your data does not matter.

Two Easy Tips for Being More Productive on Your Mac

· · Dr. Mac's Rants & Raves

Personal Productivity

Dr. Mac has been obsessed with personal productivity since time immemorial. He says that while Macs have improved immensely over time, some things haven’t changed much including a pair of tips that appeared in his first book, Dr. Macintosh, way back in 1989, as well as his current book, Working Smarter for Mac Users.

Here’s How Siri Could Become Your AI Cyber Nanny

· · Editorial

Apple buys dark data company Lattice Data

The internet has turned into the Wild, Wild West. People are exposed to threats daily, but help is often far away in time and space. But, like the old American Wild, Wild West times and technology change. It’s high time our leading tech companies like Apple and Microsoft put artificial intelligence to work truly protecting us. That’s the noblest cause for advanced technology right now.

A Glimpse Into Microsoft's Future

· · Particle Debris

Future User Interface.

Microsoft is a changed company under CEO Satya Nadella. We’re not the first ones to notice. This change has manifested itself in several ways, most notably the willingness to provide solutions on whatever platform the customer wants to work with. More exciting, however, is how people interact with their computers. This week, John points us an article that reveals Microsoft’s important new thinking about the human-machine interface.

Alexa, Siri, You're Not a Trusted Family Member

· · Editorial

Amazon Echo

The conceit of AI agents like Alexa, Cortana, Google Home and Siri is that they are to be always listening, invited to be treated as trusted family members. Or the loyal computer of our family’s starship. John Martellaro doesn’t like these analogies at all.

With Mac and PC Designs Mature, Computational Power is Sexier

· · Editorial

Modernistic speedometer. The need for Mac speed.

The designs of desktop and laptop PCs and Macs have reached a plateau.  There’s not much more to be done. But user hunger for computational power never ceases. While Apple has traditionally focused on design, it may be time for Apple to, instead, dwell on sheer computational power, an enduring addiction for everyone.

Siri's No Amazon Alexa yet, but Give Her Time

· · Editorial

Siri, an evolving service

With Amazon Alexa being joined in our living rooms by Google Assistant and now Microsoft Cortana, it’s clear that Apple needs to step up to the plate and take back the home. Jeff Butts makes the case for why Cupertino needs to develop an Echo-like device for Siri.

5 Less Expensive Wireless Alternatives to AirPods

· · Dr. Mac's Rants & Raves

Decibullz Custom Fit Bluetooth Wireless Earphones are great for otherwise hard-to-fit ears.

Last week Dr. Mac said he thought AirPods were too expensive… For those looking for decent-sounding, comfortable wireless headsets to use primarily with a single Apple device—an iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, or Mac—he says he knows many models that will serve your needs and cost you less than AirPods.

A Fantasy Conversation: Bezos and Cook Chat About Amazon Echo

· · Particle Debris

Tim Cook and Jeff Bezos.

Two very interesting things happened this week. First, we heard that Apple may be making its own Siri-powered Echo-like device, to be announced at WWDC. Later in the week, we heard that Amazon will now bring its video app, Prime Video to the Apple TV. Mere coincidence? John, just for fun, imagines a recent, fictional conversation between Jeff Bezos and Tim Cook.

Why Apple is Letting iPad Sales Drift Downward

· · Editorial

iPad Pro & pencil

Apple has watched the iPad sales numbers drift downward since 2013. Apple has smart executives. The only conclusion John can draw is that in 2013 and again 2015 Apple embarked on an aggressive, multi-phase program to breathe new life into the iPad. It’s just taking some engineering time, and so during each quarterly Earnings Report, CEO Tim Cook just has to roll with the punches until it’s done. John makes his case for a big surprise in store.