A different set of priorities?

Just enjoying my final day off before going back to work and I’m wondering whether I should move to a more comfortable four day week rather than a five day week where by the fifth day I am so had it which makes me wonder whether the marginally extra money is worth it. During that time I’m going to look for a better full time job during that time – what I am doing now pays the bills and keeps a roof over my head but long term it certainly isn’t a job I can see myself doing long term especially when I’ll eventually become an old fart. I’m going to have a look at earning some more qualifications but the LCQ I have already opens up more doors to a better job with better wages.

I have to take my hat off to Microsoft, they do a great job at marketing especially when it comes to giving the appearance that they’ve got their act together when it comes to Windows 10 but it isn’t until you go down the road and actually use it when you realise – “oh, it’s the same old Windows with all the disappointment that comes with the territory”. As tempting as it gets I always get reminded of the nightmares with previous flirtations with Windows 10 only to be let down by the horrible UI experience that never seems to be getting fixed at the speed one would expect for an organisation the size of Microsoft.

I’m investigating the idea of the $52 for 100GB from Skinny Wireless Broadband given that Spark appears to be rolling out 700MHz in my area which makes it possible to go for a cheaper broadband offer given that I’d be lucky to be even hitting over slightly half of the data allowance. Hopefully I’ll get a response back from Spark in the next couples of days so then it is a positive yes or no.

Things aren’t going so bad after all

Well, so far things have actually been going well apart from some time off from work because of an upset tummy but that’ll be sorted out when I go to the doctors today to get an evaluation along with a doctors certificate that’ll say whether I can come back to work. One of those things with the food handling industry is that the usual things one could push through in an office environment with a little discomfort are things that cannot be ignored when handling food as the risk is too great. Not a good start to the job but it is one of those things that happen.

On a good side I have received confirmation back that I have passed my LCQ (Liquor Control Qualification) which gives me unit standards 4646 and 16705 which covers the following:

4646: Demonstrate knowledge of the Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act 2012 and its implications for licensed premises (L4, C2, v9)

16705: Demonstrate knowledge of host responsibility requirements as a duty manager of licensed premises. (L4, C3, v6)

Which will enable me to apply for a duty managers licence at the local city council which will enable me to run a shift at a licence restaurant or bar which opens up a lot more opportunities for me going forward so eventually I’d like to move out of the job I have today in favour of something more fulfilling. What I’m going to be doing now is update my resume and cover letter then start applying for jobs now that I have that much required qualification with the only thing I need to do in future is just keep it up to date as the government makes changes to the legislation but given that the last time they upgraded it was 4 years ago I don’t think there will be any major changes any time soon other than maybe around the edge which will simply require a refresher course.

It appears that I made a good decision not to go for the iPhone 7 since it appears that the replacement to the iPhone 7, rumoured to be either the iPhone 8 or as some have dubbed the ‘iPhone Anniversary Edition’, will provide a big leap forward in terms of performance, battery life as well as supporting the next generation of the LTE standard. There is a rumour that they might standardise on USB-C but there has been no evidence so far other than rumours but it is highly unlikely that they would throw away all the investment made into the lightening connector particularly with the MFI programme and how dependent the ecosystem is. There was also an interesting point about how the lightening connector is thinner and more flexible so it’ll be interesting to see whether future refinements of the USB-C standard will eventually make the lightening connector obsolete or whether it’ll be something kept around indefinitely.

There is a lot of excitement building with the gradual adoption of APFS although there has been one report of someone being able to get macOS installed on an APFS volume using 10.12.4 where on the screenshot it showed that it was formatted and case insensitive. When I saw the ‘case insensitive’ it made me wonder whether firstly whether it is the byproduct of it being that it was convert rather than a fresh new setup and secondly whether Apple will in the future make all new installs of macOS default to case sensitivity but conversions will remain case insensitive as to avoid any possible compatibility issues that might appear once macOS has been upgraded and the user starts using applications that were already installed on the drive. Putting that aside I do think that in the future that the eventual aim is to harmonise between all at the platforms particularly when it comes to developers who pull down code from a source trees (git, cvs etc) whose file and directory structure assumes the host platform to which it s being downloaded onto is case sensitive in nature but on other side there are plenty of applications that break on a case sensitive formatted partition.

The AppStore isn’t a monopoly: Your analysis is bad and you should feel bad

Reading this article it appears that we’re now in the midst of yet another ‘only in America’ moment when god help us we have some oxygen thief taking it upon themselves to launch a frivolous law suit ( link ). I’ll lay down a few points:

    1. There is already choice in the form of competing platforms – if you’re not happy with the limitation/restriction or what ever other aspect of the iOS platform then you’re more than welcome to buy an Android, Blackberry or Windows 10 Mobile device. There might be some validity if there was no choice – but there is choice.
    2. If side loading was such an import feature that people were clambering for then there is nothing stopping people from buying an Android device (or derivative device such as the Amazon Fire) to do just that.
    3. You can already side load applications as long as you’ve got the source code or the code in some sort of intermediate state (aka someone compiled it into bitcode) given that you can side load without needing to have a developers subscription.

The way I see it, imagine going to a restaurant but you want to use your own sauce at the restaurant but the restaurant owner says that you can only use the sauce the is available at the restaurant itself. Is that restaurant behaving in a monopolistic way when there are numerous other restaurants out there that may allow you to bring your own sauce? Heck, they might even allow you to bring your own alcohol too! It seems that there is a cottage industry in the United States of people who go around suing whilst masquerading as ‘sticking up for consumer rights’ when in reality it is about a few lawyers trying to make their name known.

tvOS 10.1.1, iOS 10.2.1, macOS 10.12.3 and iTunes 12.5.5 Released plus betas released

Well, woke up this morning for an interview and as usual I check my email along with reading some news and with that I saw that Apple had released a bevy of updates which I quickly applied to all my devices. Regarding my iMac and MacBook Pro, both devices had their Boot ROM firmware updated but I don’t see anything written in the change log so maybe it is just general bug fixes. Everything is going well so far and Safari seems snappy and reliable a usual but then again I don’t use Flash (I’m completely Flash free) plus I also use the ad blocker plus as my only extension. iTunes was also updated but I haven’t noticed any visible changes but then again I’ve never had any issues with iTunes on macOS.

Things are rocking along at top speed with the beta release of 10.3 ( link ) which includes the all important APFS that was announced back in WWDC 2016 and slated for release his year which makes me wonder whether its inclusion in 10.3 signals its maturity or whether Apple has decided that since it is one of the most widely installed operating systems that it is the best way to knock out any issues. Then there is the beta release of macOS 10.12.4 ( link ) which has introduced ‘Night Shift Mode’ but it appears at least based on 10.12.3 that APFS is still stuck at version 0.3 so if that I anything to do by I’d be surprised if Apple merged the APFS build that is in iOS 10.3 will appear in 10.2.4.

The big question is whether Apple will make APFS case sensitive as it is in its current form or whether Apple is going to add back case insensitivity especially given that it’ll end up breaking some applications in the process. There are benefits with case sensitivity which is, developers will be happy especially when dealing with open source *NIX code pulled from a CVS which whose structure automatically assumes a case sensitive file system and all the goodness that comes with the territory.

Oh, and side note: I’ve downloaded a few movies off iTunes that were good value: Blues Brothers, Airplane!, Blazing Saddles, Trains, Planes and Automobiles. Once I get back into work again I’ll hopefully get some lose ends tied up and everything back on track again – hopefully in the next few weeks and then I’ll put the savings left over to the side in my rainy day fund for the future.

Another week, another podcast

I’ve uploaded a new podcast outlining what I think will occur under Trump and the relationship he’ll have with Russia/Putin going forward. I’m under no illusion regarding Russia/Putin or Trump but what I do cover is what could happen based on the assumption that each party is guided by some sort of rational self interest aka ‘whats in it for me’ to explain their behaviour.

I’m currently working on an article that debunks the claims regarding the iPhone and AppStore – specifically the fact that to get applications on your phone you need to use the AppStore.

There has been another build for the 10.12.3 update which seems to be taking a good amount of time to get done so it makes me wonder whether we’ve got developers jumping between macOS 10.12 and 10.13 so that it is all ready by the time WWDC rolls around in June for the unveiling. When it comes to 10.13 it’ll be interesting to see what is announced now that the iOS and macOS teams have now merged – hopefully it’ll mean a harmonisation of frameworks so when one platform moves forward that all platforms end up benefiting from the improvements rather than having to wait for it to be ported across.

Things are looking better all the time (can’t get no worse!)

Well, so far I’ve had some responses back from people who are interested in interviewing me or at least have an interest in having a look at my resume which is a great feeling – at least I’m in the running of being considered rather than being rejected before even getting a chance to sell myself to the organisation. Hopefully the interview will go well in Monday and in the afternoon I’ll stop by Motorad to get my scooter services – the mirrors sorted out, new tyres and a few other things such as replacing the fuel line so when eventually I start my job that my form of transportation is all up to scratch and won’t cause me any issues.

It appears that the source of the consumer report bad battery fiasco has come down to a bug in Safari which has been fixed in 10.12.3. so hopefully that’ll be out soon but not too soon along with the usual updates for iOS and tvOS not being too far behind. As much as Windows 10 appears to be ‘exciting’ with all the ‘improvements’ and ‘new things’ that are coming in new builds I am reminded that although ‘new’ I exciting it can be a double edged sword of dealing with the byproducts of immature technology that is still having the bugs beaten out of it.

When it comes to Twitter, if you’re given a platform by your employer, your name is well known and by virtue of that your name is associated with that company then it is important to think very long and hard before opening up and giving your five cents on a subject. There is a reason why when I am using a public persona I am very careful about what I say (along with never mentioning where I work or live) – your reputation is all that you have and the moment you open up and say something stupid there are repercussions whether you like it or not. If you want to write something controversial then go ahead but remember that the way you present your argument will have as much impact as what you’re saying. The way you present your argument will dictate whether you come off sounding like an emotionally driven prat whose opinions are lacking coherency resulting in the output sounding something akin to a Alex Jones/David Icke like mentally deranged rant or whether the writing is devoid of emotions and focuses on a coherent will reasoned argument with evidence from reliable sources to back up any claims made.

OMG! It’s the end of the Mac!

And once again we have another cycle of hysteria that because Apple hasn’t turned out a Mac that is ‘incredibly innnovative’ that some how that points to Apple putting the Mac out to pasture ( link ). Insert here the usual ‘death of the Mac’ along with conspiracy theories that Apple is secretly killing off the Mac platform in favour of moving everyone to iPads running iOS or something to that effect.

The first rumour that went around was that the iOS and macOS team were merging so then there would be a single team that develops and maintains all operating systems (iOS, macOS, tvOS, watchOS). The question I have is this, how is merging the development teams together bad? if they can harmonise the frameworks, a single kernel (I’m sure they have a plugin-able scheduler) and a unique interface (depending on whether it is macOS, iOS) a bad idea? if it means there is feature parity in terms of frameworks between macOS and iOS, is it really the end of the world? I would have thought it is great news that features that exist on iOS will make their way to macOS and vice versa.

The second rumour was about the fact that Jonathan Ive had been moved off Mac design into a new area and thus the self appointed experts on the matter all seem to opine that the death was near for the Mac platform. The reality is that the Mac platform is a mature product – do they really need to waste Ive’s talent hand holding the design team when the design is pretty much set and any movement forward will involve minor tweaks and product refreshes? I’m sitting here wondering what people expect at this stage other than incremental refreshes? When you’ve got talent where do you put them – maintaining something that is already mature or moving them onto the products that are still in a state of flux or products that are still in the development phase?