530: You Are Not Nintendo


00:00:00   Mm-hmm. Do you have, uh, also I was just finishing listening to the Hot Pockets episode. Do you have Hot Pockets nostalgia? Me? I did.

00:00:06   I'm ready to win. Let me correct it. Casey, I can't say it's nostalgia with Casey if it's raw. I know he had a Hot Pocket earlier today. Yeah.

00:00:13   No, it was an occasional special treat when I actually had a job that I would take either what I would call a frozen meal, what you would call TV dinner, typically like Healthy Choice or Lean Cuisine, one of them. But I would take one of those or occasionally a Hot Pocket.

00:00:30   Although in the last few years of employment, I mostly had gotten away from that. I am not above Hot Pockets for the record. I am, that is totally in my wheelhouse. Was it, it's not a childhood thing that you can remember? You're talking about your adult life.

00:00:40   No. I think it was, I think I actually was, I was familiar with Hot Pockets as a kid, but I think it was more during my adult life that I realized listening to the podcast and looking at the art that I was mistaken and what a, I didn't know what a Hot Pocket was because what I had in mind.

00:00:54   What? Have you ever, wait, have you never had one?

00:00:56   Well, when looking at them, I'm like, oh, I remember those from when I was a kid, but we never really had them. But then I realized, no, I, what I'm thinking of are the ones that are like the size of the little bit bigger than a postage stamp. What are those called? Tostinos like pizza rolls? Yeah.

00:01:10   They're, they don't make sense that they're called rolls. It looks like little raviolis of stuff that burns your mouth when you bite into it. Yeah. They're always, it's always hot as lava inside of those things and they never cool off. Yeah.

00:01:18   They're tiny, but they're very small. So that's what I was picturing for Hot Pockets. But then I saw the picture on the box. I'm like, wait, no, these are not the size of postage stamps. Right. These are hot and these are pockets, but they're not Hot Pockets. Yeah.

00:01:28   I'm not, I'm not totally done with the episode, but they, nothing in that episode made me think I wanted to ever have them. So. Oh God. I was so disappointed because I liked them a lot when I was a teenager. I was so disappointed to learn how crappy they are now, like from adults.

00:01:44   Well, you were excited about so far that I've listened to you're excited about the pepperoni one. The pepperoni one I think was, was the best. No spoiler, but it, but man, it's bad. Like they're all so bad. I don't know what happened.

00:01:58   Were they always this bad? Probably. I mean, or you know, where my standards just, you know, Oh my God. I think it's a little of column A, little of column B. Yeah. And like, and you, like as an adult who has not eaten a Hot Pocket in a long time, Ooh, you feel bad after eating them. Oh my God.

00:02:14   Wait, do they not make lean pockets anymore? That used to be a thing. I don't know if they still do. That's what I would usually have, if anything. What's with you and all this lean for like, well, because it made me feel slightly better about myself.

00:02:25   Yeah. Like lean cuisine and healthy choice are neither of those like, no, it is not, it's neither lean nor healthy. It is a choice, I guess. I mean, it's the same, it's the same junky food, but there's just, there's just less of it and lower calorie.

00:02:37   So what it basically boils down to is you're trading, uh, you're, you're taking in fewer calories and replacing it with all of the sodium on the planet. All of it.

00:02:46   And smaller portions. Like that's the other secret to getting, getting the calories down. Yeah. It's like after you eat your lean cuisine, you're going to then be so hungry. You're going to eat an entire bag of Oreos after, you know, it's, it's not really helping you in the net.

00:02:57   Were you watching me?

00:02:59   Uh, don't, don't, uh, challenge me here. Cause I will, I will make you guys do a lean cuisine slash healthy choice slash lean pocket challenge.

00:03:07   No, I can't, we can't do any more food challenges like that. I just, I needed another year to recover. Oh my God. I still have nightmares and there's, I still have like the one that I bought that was like my backup one because if I couldn't find the other one that's still in the freezer.

00:03:19   I'll eat it.

00:03:20   Feed the Alex when he comes home.

00:03:22   We'll mail it to Casey. Whatever condition it's in when it gets there, you got to eat it. Wait till August.

00:03:27   Yeah. I still haven't gotten up to the point in the episode where you tried the one that says that you don't have to cook it like the room temperature one that you could like put in your lunch. It's like deli meat or whatever. I can't wait to see how that is. It's gotta be vile.

00:03:39   You'll see that the, I will say those slightly surprised me, but I won't tell you in which direction.

00:03:45   Yeah. It's like Lunchables.

00:03:48   Oh God.

00:03:49   Oh, Lunchables are my favorite. Oh, can we do Lunchables? Let's do Lunchables for a member special. Please daddy, please.

00:03:54   Can we do Handi Snacks with those little red sticks and the little flat cheese?

00:03:58   I don't know. Oh yes. Oh yes. Yes. Yes. Those were good too. Oh man. And Dunkaroos.

00:04:03   The red sticks are the best part of those.

00:04:05   The red sticks were the best.

00:04:06   Just eat the stick.

00:04:07   A friend of mine, Brad, had a birthday. I think it was this past Friday and he got from a nephew of his who works at a candy shop. He got some fun dips.

00:04:17   Oh yeah.

00:04:18   Those are my fricking jam. Gosh, I love those. Oh, so good.

00:04:23   Just pure sugar up and down.

00:04:25   That was like the best part of playing T-ball as a kid is that afterwards we got to go to the concession stand and get a whole bunch of hot dogs and fun dip.

00:04:32   You know, see, in the realm of candies that are not even trying to disguise the fact that they're just sugar, you see you got Pixie Sticks, you got fun dip.

00:04:42   And I feel like the best one that figured out the best way to basically disguise pure sugar is Nerds. Right? Because it's pure sugar but all they did was like they made these little crumbly, it's like what they did with breakfast cereal.

00:04:57   It's all the same material but it's like what shape is it? They're kind of like pasta anyway. You know, Pixie Sticks is just like we're not doing anything. It's just here it is. It's in a tube. Good luck.

00:05:04   Fun dip is like well there's some powder but also a stick which is also made of sugar. Right?

00:05:08   And Nerds is like we found a way to color them brightly and make them into these little granules. I think they would spray some flavor crap on them too. Right?

00:05:15   Nerds are good, man.

00:05:17   No, no, no, no. First of all, Nerds are good. Secondly, I started recording using former sponsor channels. I started recording, shoot, I'm going to have to look up the name of it.

00:05:27   But it's this show about the history of food, particularly in America, and it's usually like my kind of garbage food.

00:05:35   Is it hosted by the guy from Double Dare?

00:05:37   No. What is his name? Mark Summers? I've heard he's a jerk. I forget where I read that.

00:05:43   He's just got OCD.

00:05:45   Is that what it is? We'll go with that.

00:05:47   He's been on talk shows talking about it.

00:05:50   Oh, okay. The Food That Built America on the History Channel.

00:05:54   Yeah, that sounds like a History Channel title.

00:05:56   Yep. And one of the episodes they talked about different candies, including Nerds. And if memory serves, I might have the details wrong here, but if memory serves, somebody realized that in making, shoot, I can't remember what other candy they were making.

00:06:11   It was the waste product for checking my nuggets.

00:06:13   It was the waste product. Yep, exactly right. And they were like, oh, damn, we can turn this into its own candy. This is perfect.

00:06:18   I think they spray it with color and some kind of artificial, like the usual round of artificial colorings that they put on stuff like cherry, grape, whatever.

00:06:26   And that's a brilliant use of just what is essentially just sugar.

00:06:30   I mean, that's most candy, though.

00:06:32   I know, but that's the barely disguised sugar, in the family of barely disguised sugar. Someone also pointed out Smarties, which is compressed sugar.

00:06:39   I mean, it's the same thing as the Smarties versus the Fun Dip Stick.

00:06:42   Well, you know, Spree, same thing.

00:06:44   I don't know what Spree is.

00:06:46   Spree is like a better Smartie that has like a candy coating, like the asset of a nerd.

00:06:50   It's basically like a nerd that's big enough to be basically, it's like twice the diameter of a Smartie.

00:06:58   Oh, yeah, I see what Spree is. I know. I recognize it.

00:07:01   Sprees are alright. Sweet tarts are my jam in the Smarties.

00:07:04   Spree has more of like a coating, like the sort of shiny, lacquer-y color thing.

00:07:10   Yeah, exactly. See, for me, I like a Smartie just fine. Spree was like my third tier. For me, it was Sweet Tarts all day, any day.

00:07:17   Smarties, second level after that. And if I needed to go for a Spree, fine, I'll go for a stupid Spree.

00:07:22   But they were not my favorite. Sweet Tarts.

00:07:25   I'm not going to look up what Sweet Tarts are. Let me see.

00:07:28   I think they're similar to Spree, right?

00:07:30   Oh, no. Sweet Tarts is like Tums for Kids.

00:07:32   Yeah, kind of. It's like an adult Smarties, if you will.

00:07:35   Yeah, Spree is a Sweet Tart with a candy coating.

00:07:37   How do you like Sweet Tarts over Sprees? Spree at least has the candy coating.

00:07:41   Yeah, Spree is better.

00:07:42   No, because then you can just scrape the Sweet Tart against the inside of your teeth for like an hour.

00:07:47   Which I'm sure is super healthy.

00:07:49   That's what dentist recommend, I hear.

00:07:50   Yep, exactly right.

00:07:51   Just rub sugar right directly against your teeth.

00:07:53   So, you know, Easter just happened in the United States.

00:07:57   In the United States.

00:07:58   As if we have a different religious counter than...

00:08:00   There's Canadian Easter.

00:08:02   Anyway, setting that aside.

00:08:05   So, yeah, that just happened. And of course, you know, we go to family and they pour candy all over us basically.

00:08:11   So, it's just tons of candy. Not even just for the kids. Candy also given to the adults.

00:08:16   I know. I got an Easter basket too, which I don't know what I'm going to do with.

00:08:19   And this is like the one time of year I actually eat candy like really more than just like one or two here or there.

00:08:25   Oh, man, does it make me feel crappy. Like, I just get so tired and I just want more candy. It's like a drug.

00:08:33   That's why you do a Valentine's Day.

00:08:34   Because you can just have like one fancy chocolate instead of like a handful of jelly beans.

00:08:39   Oh my god, it was... it's rough. It's really rough.

00:08:44   You got the Jelly Belly, one of those weird flavored things. And it was like kids flavors or something.

00:08:50   So, I guess it was like excluding the weird flavors. But they were wrong. There were some weird flavors in there.

00:08:55   Yeah, well, I feel like every Jelly Belly assortment contains some weird flavors.

00:09:00   And like be glad you didn't get the ones where like they sell a set where they're intentionally disgusting for like random draw.

00:09:09   Like this might be good or it might taste like, you know, poop or whatever.

00:09:13   And yeah, those are horrendous. Although they did make a fun thing to bring to a bar last fall, but for some reason we got them at Halloween.

00:09:19   But otherwise...

00:09:21   That's what you're doing with the Hot Pockets in your freezer. You're doing the same thing as the Jelly Belly company does.

00:09:28   They all look the same on the outside, but you don't know what you're gonna get.

00:09:31   There are no more Hot Pockets in my freezer, Jon.

00:09:33   Really? Did you use them for fertilizer?

00:09:35   Wow.

00:09:36   Maybe they won't biodegrade.

00:09:37   Yeah, they won't biodegrade. Are you kidding me?

00:09:39   We tried. We asked all of our local friends, "Hey, who wants these for free? Take whatever you want."

00:09:44   I heard that theory of like, "Who's gonna come running over to your house to eat Hot Pockets?"

00:09:48   Zero of our friends. And keep in mind, we live on an island where it's hard to get groceries.

00:09:53   None of our friends wanted any of them even for free.

00:09:57   I don't think you can get the deer to eat them.

00:09:59   No, the deer will eat anything else. They'll eat pizza crust, they'll eat watermelon rind.

00:10:04   I doubt they would ever eat a Hot Pocket, and they probably shouldn't eat a Hot Pocket.

00:10:07   The seagulls will eat that. Sorry, the gulls will eat Hot Pockets.

00:10:09   No, I ended up having to throw most of them away, because we needed the freezer space back.

00:10:12   We had all these boxes that were half-eaten.

00:10:14   You don't have a compost where you are?

00:10:17   No.

00:10:18   They wouldn't biodegrade anyway.

00:10:19   Yeah, I was gonna say, that would probably ruin your compost.

00:10:21   Isn't compost a pretty delicate balance of a lot of things?

00:10:25   No, we have a service that comes and gets it.

00:10:28   Of course you do. That's the most first world.

00:10:31   I know, that might be like the best.

00:10:34   Yeah, it's the same thing as they come to get your "recycling" and your regular garbage, and also your third can, which is your compost.

00:10:42   Right, and what percentage of that actually gets not thrown away?

00:10:46   Well, the compost all gets composted, because it's compost.

00:10:49   Does it?

00:10:50   You get it back later if you want it.

00:10:51   That's the whole thing. Everyone puts in, and if you want a bunch of compost, they'll bring it back to you after it's been composted.

00:10:55   Oh, really?

00:10:56   Yeah.

00:10:57   So you're just renting space in somebody else's pile.

00:10:59   Yeah, well we don't want it back, so someone else is getting our compost, but if we wanted it, they would bring it to us.

00:11:04   Is there enough demand for the resulting compost to make up for all the crap people throw into their compost piles?

00:11:11   Probably. I mean, it costs money.

00:11:13   If you go to the homestead and you want to buy real good compost, it costs money.

00:11:17   It's heavy to ship around. I think there is enough demand.

00:11:20   Well, I guess that's good. I hope that's good. I hope that works out. Because it's not like recycling, which is BS mostly.

00:11:25   Yes. Unlike the recycling, the compost actually is composted.

00:11:29   Okay, that's good. That's an improvement.

00:11:32   So we've now given away like 15 minutes of members' content, I'd say, because this is like straight out of our recent member specials.

00:11:39   So if you want more of this garbage, or compost, if you want more of this compost...

00:11:44   No, our member specials are much more directed than this.

00:11:47   We have a goal, we have a mission. It's a dumb mission sometimes, but we have it.

00:11:52   I think most times.

00:11:54   Just like top four.

00:11:56   Oh, wow. Brutal.

00:11:58   Alright, let's get this party started. We have some feedback from Matthew Buchanan, who is the co-founder of Letterboxd.

00:12:07   And Matthew writes, "With regard to John's comment about our iOS app, it's native Swift, not a WebView, except for a couple of screens like our member stats, which are embedded WebViews.

00:12:16   On Android, it's native Kotlin. Perhaps he's not used it recently, if he uses the website predominantly, but both apps have always been native since we launched them."

00:12:23   This was the most polite way to make this comment. Matthew is not Canadian to the best of my knowledge, but he may as well be, because if it were me, I would have been like, "Are you frickin' kidding me? None of that, well, effectively none of that is web.

00:12:36   That's all native, you big jerk!" And no, that's not throughout Matthew took. He was much kinder.

00:12:40   Yeah, well, like I said on the last show, I was saying that it's all WebView, but it's a testament to how good their website is, that the app is as good.

00:12:47   Apparently it's not a testament to how good the website is, because it's just a native app.

00:12:51   I still think the website is really good. The point is that both of them are so...

00:12:57   They look like they're the same thing, and in some cases they are the same thing, like the member stats, like he was mentioning.

00:13:02   The look and feel and functionality is so coherent between the parts of the app, the native application and the website, that it's difficult to tell which is which.

00:13:12   And to be clear, I think both of them are good. I don't think they're all bad and janky, I think they're both good.

00:13:18   But one of them actually is implemented in Swift, apparently, and one of them is implemented with web stuff.

00:13:24   But I just think they did a good job of branding and blending such that they can put in pure web content into their native application and it fits right in, because that's how good their website is.

00:13:33   For this next piece of feedback, I need a little help here. I feel like I don't want to give this person credit because of the wrong that they've committed.

00:13:45   And they were proud of the wrong they committed.

00:13:47   They've got their name in lights on Apple's website.

00:13:50   Do not give attention to the offender. I refuse to read this feedback or a follow up. Now I'm calling you feedback for God's sake.

00:13:57   I refuse to read this. John, if you would like to, you feel free. I am respectfully, kind of respectfully, abstaining. Carry on.

00:14:04   I don't blame this person for this thing that happened. I just, you have to blame Apple here.

00:14:09   Because, again, when you're as big as Apple, you get feedback about everything.

00:14:13   It's up to Apple what to do about those feedbacks. Like, whatever it is that you care about, they get feedback saying to do it both ways.

00:14:20   The way you want and the way you don't want.

00:14:22   In this case, Daniel Compton wrote to tell us this.

00:14:25   On a recent ATP, he talked about how it would be great if you could see the last time Apple touched a bug.

00:14:30   This used to be the case up until 2017, when I reported it as a security bug.

00:14:34   Boo!

00:14:37   I had reported a suggestion to Apple in 2014 in Bug Reporter, and I never received any response. But around April 2017, I love the story begins with, "Hey, I reported a bug and three years later, something happened."

00:14:47   Never received a response. But around April 2017, which is three years later, I noticed that my radar had a last modified date of April 2017, even though there was no activity on the radar when I looked at it.

00:14:57   My assumption was that this meant someone at Apple had posted on it.

00:15:00   I reported this as a security issue as it leaked information about which radars were being worked on.

00:15:05   That's an interesting way of phrasing that. It leaked information about which radars were being worked on.

00:15:10   It said, "Hey, the modification date changed."

00:15:12   To be clear, he's saying, "From the outside, in my three-year-old bug report that had never gotten any response, suddenly the modification date changes."

00:15:19   And that made me think that someone at Apple is doing something to it. Something that I can't see, but I did see the date change.

00:15:25   So this is a security issue as a report that you're leaking information.

00:15:28   Uh-huh, sure it is.

00:15:29   Which is not wrong. That's not wrong. It makes an already terrible system even worse for those of us on the outside.

00:15:38   Right. And so three months later in July, I received an email from Apple Product Security thanking me for reporting the issue and asking if I'd like to be acknowledged on their security reporting page.

00:15:48   I said yes, and here is the listing showing my name. We'll put a link in the show notes.

00:15:52   No, we will not. No thing for this person.

00:15:54   And the original acknowledgement credited this as a server configuration issue, which I thought was a funny euphemism.

00:15:59   So to be clear, the bug he reported never got any response after three years, but then someone looked at it and bumped the date.

00:16:05   But then when he reported this "security issue" three months later, it was apparently fixed and he got credited for it.

00:16:11   And part of why that's the case is some people said, "If you report a security issue using the security..."

00:16:17   Whatever, there's like a form for it, there's an email address, like it's separate from feedback/radar, that they are actually responsive and like, you know, deal with stuff in a more timely manner because security issues in theory are more timely.

00:16:28   You can also report security issues through feedback. Maybe it's funneled into the same place.

00:16:32   But anyway, the point is that "bug" got dealt with and now we're all worse off for it.

00:16:39   So thanks, Daniel.

00:16:41   No, no! Do not give this person any accolades whatsoever. No, I refuse.

00:16:48   So the reason I say this is on Apple is because if someone reports that, your answer to that shouldn't be, "Oh, let's lock this down and make sure that doesn't show up anymore."

00:16:58   Your answer should be, "You know what, why are we worried about people on the outside knowing that we're working on their bugs? Is that such a bad thing? Maybe we should actually communicate with them, but no, they went the other direction."

00:17:07   Of course they did.

00:17:09   And then this is actually pretty much all the follow-up you see this week, for sure.

00:17:15   Henrik Nee writes, "Future version of Icecubes app will include verify URLs and search results, as promised on the show."

00:17:21   And there's a poll request that we'll link and from the poll request you can see the original issue, which basically says, "Hey, I was listening to ATP and they said that this might not be a bad idea. I think this was John. Maybe we should do it."

00:17:33   And they did it. So soon or now maybe on Icecubes app for Mastodon you'll see a demarcation of some sort when a verified URL is in somebody's profile.

00:17:43   Yeah, boy, they'll take that suggestion from me, but no one will make a unified timeline.

00:17:48   That's because nobody wants a unified timeline, John. Stop trying to make that happen.

00:17:52   There's just so many Mastodon clients. Just one. I just need one.

00:17:57   Nobody wants it.

00:17:58   Alright.

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00:20:00   [music]

00:20:04   Alright, so Trouble in Paradise for Apple Photos dedupes?

00:20:07   Yeah, I was talking last week about how I was using their new shared library deduplication feature and that I had trial run it over dozens and dozens of photos manually checking each time that the thing was doing what I wanted it to do.

00:20:17   And eventually it never made a mistake and I had faith in it. I'm like, "Okay, dedupe all my things." And it found 30,000 duplicates.

00:20:23   And I was like, "Alright, well off I go." A bunch of people wrote in to say that they had different experiences for me.

00:20:29   So here is Aaron Gabbard saying, "My Apple Photos duplicate experience was a bit distressing. It seemed to be doing some kind of hashing/abstraction on the photos to verify whether they were duplicates and as such it won't pick up on very slight differences in pictures.

00:20:41   For example, there were some "duplicate pictures" taken on a tripod from a distance, one of which had my wife and one of which had both of us.

00:20:48   She was sitting in the exact same position as all of them and apparently me joining her in the picture did not change the abstraction value enough for photos to recognize them as different.

00:20:56   There weren't many cases like this but I think I may have lost at least a couple of Honeymoon photos along the way due to me trusting the process before going in.

00:21:03   That's pretty bad. Picture with one person in it, picture with two people in it. Not duplicates. Very different picture, Apple's photos.

00:21:10   Matthew Schafer provided an actual example which he posted on Mastodon. We'll link to if you want to see these pictures.

00:21:16   Just FYI, duplicate detection has a number of false positives for me. He's really annoyed that there's no way to say these are not duplicates.

00:21:22   Which is true. In the interface there's not really a way for you to say... basically you just ignore it. You say don't merge them and it won't merge them.

00:21:29   But you can't make it go away which is kind of annoying. It's like having a little red badge on your application that you can never make go away. Which also happens with Apple software.

00:21:36   So in this example, this is a less egregious one. It's like a family portrait. And you can see they're two different pictures.

00:21:42   Like the little kids have different expressions in each one because they can't stay still. And Apple photos think they're the same photos.

00:21:48   So after seeing this, I'm like okay well I didn't check all 30,000 of my photos. I just spot checked many many of them until I was confident.

00:21:55   So what do I do about this? Well, the good thing is, and the reason I would say to Aaron that you didn't lose your honeymoon pictures.

00:22:02   When you do merge duplicates, as I mentioned last week, it doesn't immediately delete hard delete the ones that it gets rid of.

00:22:09   It deletes them the same way photos always does and they end up in the recently deleted folder.

00:22:13   So since I did this entire big merge in one big operation on one day, my recently deleted folder had 30,000 photos in it.

00:22:21   And the things in recently deleted, they basically get permanently deleted after they've been there for 30 days.

00:22:25   And if you look in photos on the Mac, you'll see a little, underneath every photo it will say 25 days remaining, 15 days remaining.

00:22:31   That's how much longer they have to live in recently deleted before they get deleted for good.

00:22:35   So what I did was I went back into recently deleted and I selected all the photos that said 29 days remaining.

00:22:44   I think it was 29 or 28, whatever day it was when I did that big merge.

00:22:48   And here's the process I did. So select them all while in recently deleted.

00:22:53   Then I applied a keyword to them while in recently deleted that said, what was it like, recovered duplicates or something like that.

00:23:00   After I applied that label to all the, the keyword to all of them, then I hit the recover button to recover them from deleted.

00:23:07   It's important to do it in this order because if you just hit recover, all you've done is just sprayed them back into your photo library and you have no way to find them again.

00:23:13   But if you label them with a new, with a new keyword, you know, recovered duplicates, then you recover them.

00:23:19   Then it went back to my main photo library, made a smart folder that said keyword is recovered duplicate or whatever.

00:23:25   And there's my 30,000 photos. Right.

00:23:27   And then what I did, because I missed your backup, is I exported unmodified originals to all for all 30,000 photos and threw it into an archive drive and pushed it up to my cloud backups and sucked.

00:23:37   You know, I just, I got it, I got it out of photos onto disk into a dedicated directory structure that said, hey, just FYI, these are the 30,000 duplicates I got rid of.

00:23:48   And I pushed that into my backup vortex and then I redeleted them and they went back into recently deleted only now their account is 30 days instead of 29 or 28 or whatever it was.

00:23:56   Right.

00:23:57   So now if at any point in the future, I say, where is that picture? I thought I had a picture of this and all I see is this other one.

00:24:05   Did that accidentally get merged as a duplicate or whatever?

00:24:07   I can go into my archive of 30,000 backed up duplicate photos and sift through there and say, was there another version of this pose around the same time, date and time or whatever?

00:24:17   And now at least I feel confident that even if the photos duplicate resolution thing totally screwed stuff up, I still didn't actually lose any data.

00:24:27   And that's kind of sucky that that has to be the case.

00:24:29   And it is kind of sucky that the duplicate thing does this.

00:24:33   But remember, when you're doing the merge duplicates, you do have, it does distinguish between the different kinds of duplicates.

00:24:40   If you just select a bunch and say, merge these all able, the dialog that pops up, at least on the Mac will say, do you want me to merge all the pictures you selected or do you want me to merge the exact duplicates only?

00:24:52   And it'll give you the count merge, you know, 20 exact duplicates, move 50 duplicate, merge 50 duplicates.

00:24:58   Right. If you only ever click the exact duplicate one, I think that is the exact duplicate, like byte for byte, identical file duplicate thing.

00:25:06   And I think the non-exact duplicates are the thing where it tries to figure out, apparently poorly, whether the photos are the same.

00:25:12   So, I mean, I didn't really, you know, I got them out of my library.

00:25:17   I got my library merged, but I didn't really save the storage space, which honestly, like, you know, it would have been nice to get that storage space back, but I was already using it anyway for my photo library when they were in separate photo libraries.

00:25:30   Well, you got it back on iCloud, didn't you?

00:25:32   Yeah, like everything was on iCloud.

00:25:34   I'm saying you got the storage space back on iCloud, right? Because you've now...

00:25:38   I mean, I will in 30 days.

00:25:39   Well, sure. Right, right, right.

00:25:40   Yeah. But like I didn't, I had this Mac downloading originals for both of my libraries, so everything was on the local disk here.

00:25:48   But anyway, they're pushed off into, they're on two Synologies and then the cloud backup.

00:25:53   So if I need to get them someday, I can.

00:25:56   It was a little bit of an annoying process.

00:25:58   So as part of that process, exporting the 30,000 photos, for whatever reason, Photos was having a real hard time with it.

00:26:05   I don't know what its problem was. I've exported more than that before and it's had no problem.

00:26:09   But it would get like 30% through and it would just hang up and not do any more exporting.

00:26:15   And I would look at all the processes and see if anybody's doing anything.

00:26:18   Is anyone doing any file on IO? Is anything doing any CPU?

00:26:22   You know, it's not always going to be the Photos app. It's going to be like Photo Library D and all these other things.

00:26:26   No, they would just get hung up. I don't know what it was hung up on. I could never figure it out.

00:26:30   I restarted several times. I tried to do it in small batches.

00:26:34   Like I hate babysitting programs like that, you know what I mean?

00:26:36   Like if a program has a feature where you can select a certain number of photos and do something that you think should be straightforward,

00:26:41   like export unmodified originals, especially when you're doing it from a Photo Library, I said download originals.

00:26:47   So it's not like it's waiting for them to come from the cloud down to my computer.

00:26:50   They're all on my computer. All I want you to do is export them.

00:26:53   And the originals, just export. I mean, I know where I could just get the originals myself and do it.

00:26:57   So tedious. So I was doing them in batches of a thousand and it was working, but I didn't want to do 30 batches of a thousand.

00:27:03   So I kept getting greedy and I'd be like, OK, I did a couple of batches. Let me just do the rest of them.

00:27:07   And then it would hang up. And I wouldn't be able to resume that operation because when you do the export unmodified originals,

00:27:13   it does not ask you, oh, it looks like there's a file with this name already in this folder. Should I overwrite it or skip it?

00:27:18   Like, you know, like the Finder does. Photos does not ask that. It just blindly exports and picks a new file name with like a number in parentheses after it.

00:27:25   So you can't re-export unless you know the exact photo where it got hung up. And I didn't because it's just a stupid little progress bar that says I'm 30 percent done.

00:27:32   So tedious. Eventually I did get it to export. I should show you the screenshot. I think I saved this just for the purposes of the show.

00:27:40   Yeah, this is great error handling from Mac photos. I guess this is Marko can put this in chapter art if he wants, or we can just look at it here. It's not that exciting.

00:27:52   Take a look. Take a look at the slack. Take a look. Oh, I've seen this amazing error dialog. The world. Yeah, I've seen this before.

00:27:59   So this is a dialog and a results dialog. It says export results. It's not an error dialog. It just says export results.

00:28:06   It says export completed with errors. That's like when you used to get your app rejection from the App Store and the subject line would be application submission feedback.

00:28:14   Export completed with errors. 18,862 of 19,480 files have been exported to duplicate photos. The export operation failed to create files for 618 photos. Semicolon. The first 100 are listed below.

00:28:34   And then there is a scrolling list of file names and errors. The file names are just the actual file names and the errors just say unknown error parentheses 1001,005.

00:28:46   So it knows that 618 photos failed to export, but it's not going to tell me what those are. It's just going to list the first 100. What am I supposed to do with that? I can't go and retrieve those 618 myself.

00:28:57   Like, I only know the first 100. You can't scroll to get any more. There's nothing to say. Just tell me the other 518. Nope. Those are a secret. We can't tell you what those are.

00:29:07   Never mind that file name is insufficient as a unique thing anyway because I do have duplicate file names just because of multiple cameras and stuff over the years.

00:29:15   So that was incredibly frustrating. My success scenario was this. On my successful export, which happened over the course of 8 hours while I slept, was this. This is me just doing all of them.

00:29:29   27,570 of 27,575 have been exported. The export operation failed to create the files for 5 photos listed below. Yay! And I just manually exported those 5 and it worked fine.

00:29:41   And now you have a different error code, -1 for these. That's right. And by the way, since those file names are not unique, I would have to go look at all the dsc_0031.jpg files and see how many. There was 4 of them.

00:29:56   I have 3, so this 4th one is the one that didn't export. Let me export that one. So I just did it manually for 5 files and now I'm sure I have all the files. At least as sure as you can be about anything with Apple Photos.

00:30:06   In happier news, Amazon is going to keep DPReviewArchives shrug? Maybe? It's extremely unclear. The General Manager of DPReview, Scott Everett, wrote, "We've received a lot of questions about what's next for the site. We hear your concerns about losing the content that has been carefully curated over the years and we want to assure you that the content will remain available as an archive."

00:30:29   That's it. We've also heard that you need more time to access the site so we're going to keep publishing some more stories while we work on archiving. That's fine, but even just a hint as to what shape that archive will be would be neat to know. That would be nice.

00:30:46   What does that second paragraph mean? The second paragraph, "We've also heard that you need more time to access the site." That makes it sound like you're taking the site offline. That's why we need more time to access it because at a certain point you're going to take it away and we don't have any more time.

00:31:04   So, "You need more time to access the site." So, in response to us needing more time to access the site, which already doesn't make sense, "We're going to keep publishing some more stories while we work on archiving." What does "keep publishing more stories" have to do with us needing more time to access the site? Those are two different things.

00:31:22   Also, "We don't need to access the site in any given timeline because they just said they're going to put an archive up."

00:31:45   Doesn't this sound like we're going to keep running the site? They're going to keep publishing some more stories?

00:31:55   I think the idea is, look, if the site's up, we have to be posting stories to it. If we're not posting stories to it, then there's no point in it being up. We're like, no, there is a point in it being up, even if you're not posting stories to it. Do you understand?

00:32:19   I would read this as a sign that maybe Amazon's willing to keep one or two people working on it? I don't know. It's really weird that they're going to keep publishing new stuff. It kind of sounds like they're still employing people. That's what that sounds like to me.

00:32:35   Even on the YouTube channel, the folks who are doing the YouTube channel who are going over to PetaPexel, they said, "Oh, DPReview is going away, but stay tuned because we're going to do five or six more videos before we go away." They're doing fun, on-the-way-out-the-door videos. I think I showed you one of them. Actually, the focal length one wasn't one of those.

00:32:54   Anyway, just fun videos to wrap up. One of the most interesting things about the videos is they always get to the part where you have to say, "Don't forget to like and subscribe," or whatever. They're like, "Well, I guess you don't need to subscribe. This is the first YouTube video." They're at a loss.

00:33:09   "Don't subscribe because the channel is going away, but I guess you can like it. It doesn't really matter, honestly, because the channel is going away." They're still a lame-duck YouTube channel. They're still putting out content. I think the website is the same thing.

00:33:26   As people go out the door, it's your last chance. That one article that you always wanted to write and they would never let you write, write it now. Who's going to stop you? I think that's what's happening.

00:33:34   What a mess. I still think this is not a good management decision by Amazon. This couldn't have possibly cost them that much, especially when you add to whatever net cost when you also then subtract out all the affiliate sales that it generated.

00:33:53   Yeah, it's perfect synergy for a site that sells camera junk.

00:33:56   Yes. Maybe B&H should have bought them. Who knows? Whatever it is, I don't know why it would make sense for a camera retailer not to run this site. That makes no sense whatsoever to me.

00:34:09   It's just small potatoes for Amazon. That's what I'm getting at.

00:34:12   I know. How big could the staff have been?

00:34:15   That's why they don't want to bother. It's too small for Amazon to bother.

00:34:18   I keep going there because I've been doing all this camera stuff recently. Next time I need a camera in another five years, whatever.

00:34:26   It's not going to be on there.

00:34:27   It's just not going to be. These other sites that are trying to replace it, frankly, I don't think are as good. They don't have the history of having the database of how these cameras compare to what I had before so I could compare when shopping. Have things gotten better since my old Canon, whatever? Let me see. I love being able to do that.

00:34:46   It's already now becoming difficult to use the site because possibly in response to all the people trying to archive it, they seem to be having extremely strict throttling control on the site.

00:34:58   So if I load a camera review, just loading the review for one camera, and I get there by Google so I didn't even get any other pages on their site, just the number of requests it makes to load one review makes it so that if I then click on a picture to zoom it in, I get the rate limiting screen.

00:35:19   I get the blank white screen, dead request if you look at the request, it's setting a rate limiting code. Just loading one review makes you hit the rate limit, which is very difficult. It makes it very difficult to use the site.

00:35:32   So already it's breaking in weird ways, but even that shows me, wow, what a loss this is. I just want to go look up this cool camera somebody just told me about or this cool lens I might want. And then you hit these walls and it just reminds you, oh, this is going to be gone soon.

00:35:51   And then so I go look at some other site to get the information I need because they blocked me and all the information is worse or missing on other sites. So it's just, what a waste. What a loss for what for Amazon.

00:36:03   Like why, what could this have possibly been costing them when you net out all those affiliate sales? Like what could this have possibly been costing them and they decided to kill it. Like what a weirdly run company.

00:36:13   Yeah. And then people from the sites will go elsewhere. I'm sure like the YouTubers going to Petapixel, whatever, but it's like what you said before, wherever they go, they won't have the exact same tests, for example.

00:36:25   Whereas the DP review hasn't been doing more or less the same tests, the same sort of test pattern screens and stuff. So you can actually compare, you know, at least within a few years of each other, you can directly compare.

00:36:35   I know these cameras are being tested in more or less the same way as the new ones. Whereas when you go to a new site, you know, you don't have that same history.

00:36:43   I think you're being a bit ridiculous though, because think about all the money Amazon has to pay to host this site. I mean, they must be paying, wait, let me check my notes. They must be paying Amazon a lot of money to host that site. So I don't blame them for wanting to shut it down. Right?

00:36:57   The funny thing too is like now that Amazon is sending all these people to other sites that have their own affiliate links, Amazon presumably didn't have to pay DP review for their affiliate links.

00:37:10   So all those links that are going through the link to Amazon, Amazon is now going to have to pay out like seven or eight percent of all those links to some other site. So by canceling DP review, they're actually potentially going to lose more money overall.

00:37:24   I bet they did pay them for the affiliate links. I know it sounds silly because it's all like we're all same team here or whatever. They did just because it's easier in terms of, you know, not special casing or anything like that with all the old affiliate links. It's like just running through the system. It'll all come out in the wash.

00:37:38   All right, John, you wanted sensor shake on your camera. So this is too hard to pull through.

00:37:44   No, I wanted sensor shake.

00:37:45   Oh, I'm sorry. I'm sorry. It's always John except this time.

00:37:48   No, because because I had on my old Canon 5D Mark IIs, they had sensor shake every time you turn the camera off. And those cameras never got any dust on their sensors in the entire many years and many lens changes that we use them.

00:38:02   We have Sony's for like two seconds and they get lens dust on or sensor dust on them. That's very hard to clean off.

00:38:08   I also just learned that my new Fuji X-T5 also has sensor shake every time I turn it off. So I don't expect to have a lot of dust in that one either. But Sony, apparently they do have this feature sort of. I think you have to tell it to do it each time, right?

00:38:27   Yep. And I believe I did it. But the one time I cleaned my sensor on one of my cameras, which is a terrifying experience, before I broke down and bought a sensor cleaning kit and did the whole little scary surgery, I did try the sensor shake thing and it didn't entirely work.

00:38:46   But anyway, if you want to do this on your Sony camera, I'll put a link in the show notes to I think this is my Sony cameras. I hit the menu button, then go to setup, then cleaning mode, then hit enter and it will shake.

00:38:54   I don't think there's a way to make it do it every time you turn the camera on and off. Honestly, I probably wouldn't want that. Being able to do it manually helps.

00:39:03   No, trust me, you want that.

00:39:04   Well, I mean, I've been lucky enough to not have any dust issues on any of my cameras. I just had that hair that got caught in the shutter mechanism, which the sensor shake, as you can imagine, did not help. I had to go in there with some tweezers and get that out.

00:39:17   But yeah, if you want to do this, you can do it manually. It would be nice if they put it in a way to do it automatically.

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00:40:56   Now, Jon, you want to take us to school, please?

00:41:02   I will try. This is a very long video. This is one I referred to last episode with the Sony cameras and their two different kinds of ISO that I couldn't remember the name of.

00:41:15   It's dual base ISO or dual gain ISO. Different manufacturers use different terms for it and I was trying to summarize it from memory and did a bad job.

00:41:23   So I will do a better job this time now that I've pulled the URL, which will be in the show notes.

00:41:28   So, here's how it works. This is apparently only on recent-ish Sony cameras.

00:41:33   I think, for example, someone wrote in to say that Marco's older Sony a7R III doesn't have this, but the current a7R V does have it.

00:41:44   So somewhere in between those two, they added it to their cameras.

00:41:47   And it's something I didn't know about Sony cameras. For all I know, it's on other cameras and sensors as well.

00:41:54   Although, Sony sensors are actually in many brands of cameras, kind of like LG OLED panels or in many TVs.

00:42:01   I think Nikon uses Sony sensors now, maybe even Canon.

00:42:04   Canon does not. Canon has their own stuff going on, but Nikon uses Sony sensors usually.

00:42:08   Yeah, so I'm not saying this is exclusive to Sony, but this particular YouTube video was specific to Sony. That's why I was watching this channel.

00:42:15   I don't know if the whole channel is specific to Sony cameras, but this video definitely was. That's why I was interested in it.

00:42:20   But I found it fascinating because I had never heard this before. Probably because I don't do anything with videoware. This is more of a well-known thing.

00:42:26   It's a 43-minute video, which you're probably not going to watch, so I'm going to try to summarize it.

00:42:30   And even in the 43-minute video, I think there is not enough information for me to fully understand this.

00:42:36   The guy says he's purposely simplifying it to fit it in, and the simplified version takes 43 minutes.

00:42:41   But it's fascinating to watch, so I suggest it.

00:42:43   So here is the summary of the interesting thing. So first he's describing how the, what they call the photo sites work in the sensors, which is a little thing that light hits, that senses light hitting it.

00:42:52   And the way it works is the light hits the top of the photo site, and that makes it send a bunch of electrons downward, you know, in the sensor.

00:43:02   Where they get, this is not how it actually works, this is the analogy.

00:43:04   Where they get collected in a little well. It looks more like a bucket to me, but they kept calling it a well, right?

00:43:09   And so, then the sensor basically counts up how many electrons by measuring the charge, counts up how many electrons were in the well by measuring the charge at that photo site, and that gives it value.

00:43:21   And every one of the little photo sites is, you know, whatever. It's not one per pixel, but just imagine it's like that.

00:43:27   So that's how a sensor works. But the dual gain thing works where there's two wells. There's a big well, and there's a little well.

00:43:36   And the camera can choose, do I want the electrons that get, you know, chucked out from the photo site, do I want them to try to fill the big well, or do I want them to try to fill the little well?

00:43:47   And here's the difference. So the large capacity well is what's called low conversion gain mode.

00:43:53   Because it's a bigger well, it has more dynamic range, which means you can put more electrons in there before it fills.

00:43:59   And by the way, if that well fills, you just get 100% white. That's when your highlights are blown out or whatever.

00:44:04   You're not going to get any more white. No matter how much more light hits that sensor, you're already at max, right?

00:44:09   I guarantee you I can get whiter.

00:44:11   A big bucket, the big well, has a larger dynamic range between, you know, one little electron, a whole bunch.

00:44:21   But there's also apparently more read noise. And if you don't know what read noise is, watch the video.

00:44:25   I don't understand why the bigger well has more read noise. I believe it. It just wasn't explained in the video. But take that as read.

00:44:32   The smaller capacity well is what's called high conversion gain mode that has less dynamic range, but the well fills faster.

00:44:39   And why would you want the well to fill faster? If you have a dark seam where there's less light, that means less light is needed to reach an equivalent sensor output.

00:44:48   So basically it seems like the sensor output, like the voltage, is determined by what percentage full is the little well, right?

00:44:54   A big well with the same number of electrons as a small well will be lower percentage full.

00:44:59   So if you put that same number of electrons in the small well, maybe it fills it to 90% capacity, you get the 90% of the voltage value.

00:45:06   And if you have a higher voltage, that means it's higher above the noise floor of like the circuitry and the sensor and everything like that.

00:45:13   So if you're in a very dark scene, you want to use the little well, the high conversion gain mode, to get better low light performance at the cost of less dynamic range.

00:45:23   And this is the cleanest way to lift the signal above the noise floor because it happens within the sensor itself before you get to any other part of the read pathway.

00:45:32   Again, see the video to see the read pathway. And this is as opposed to the ISO control, which, you know, it's interesting that we use the same terms for like film cameras and regular because in the world of film cameras, I believe ISO was just basically saying,

00:45:44   how sensitive is this film stuff to light? Right. And whatever chemicals are on that film, you know, the sensitivity was measured with this ISO number, right?

00:45:54   Obviously, there's no film and no chemicals that are being exposed to light inside digital camera, but they still use the same term.

00:46:00   The way ISO works, at least in this little diagram with Sony cameras, is when you get those voltages from the photo sites, adjusting ISO tells an amplifier that's behind that saying,

00:46:12   hey, when you get the signals from the sensor amplifier, you know, crank up the signal you're getting by whatever amount.

00:46:18   As you crank up the ISO, it amplifies it more and more. But of course, that adds noise because there's noise in the amplifier circuit, so on and so forth.

00:46:23   So by using the littler well, the high conversion gain mode inside the sensors, you get a similar effect, but you get that within the sensor itself before you get to the stage where ISO has any effect.

00:46:37   And that's part of the reason why the most recent Sony sensors have really good low light performance. When they use the little well, they do much better than when they use the big well.

00:46:46   And you may be wondering, okay, but when does the camera switch from using the little well to the big well? Is that a thing that I can control? Apparently not, but you can find out where that is.

00:46:54   There's instructions in the video. One way to do it is to just put the lens cap on your camera so it's just black, and then like crank up the brightness on your screen on the back.

00:47:02   And once you've overdone this, you can see it's black, right? I don't expect to see anything the lens cap is on. But as you crank up the ISO, you'll start to see noise in the blackness.

00:47:10   Because, you know, noise, see the video for all the different places where noise can come in, there's a surprising number of them, including photon noise, which is scary.

00:47:18   Because the real world is not as simple as you think it is. And what you'll see is it'll be black with noise, and as you crank up the ISO, it'll get noisier and noisier and noisier.

00:47:27   And then when you go one more notch up on the ISO, it'll get, wait, the noise decreased. And then it'll start to go back up again, right?

00:47:33   When the noise decreases, that's when it's skipped, switched from one of the buckets to the other.

00:47:38   The other way you can tell is you can go to one of these weird sensor measuring nerd websites. The one he recommended was called Photons to Photos. It's photonstophotos.net.

00:47:47   Put a link in the show notes, and you can see charts for your specific sensor and your specific camera measuring various things. I think the clearest one is the shadow improvement scale thing.

00:47:57   And you can just pick, like if you pick two cameras, you can see it well. This is the one I picked for the show notes here is showing the a7 IV and the a7S III compared.

00:48:08   And it doesn't really matter so much what shadow detail is, it's some measure of something or whatever, but you can see there's a discontinuity in the graph where all of a sudden it jumps.

00:48:16   This is where it switches from one of those buckets to the other. And also, by the way, this one you can see that the a7S III has an incredibly low noise floor compared to the a7 IV.

00:48:26   That's why the a7 III is beloved by video people, because it's less noisy. But anyway, you can mouse over these little charts and find for your specific camera, if you have dual gain ISO, you will see that jump in the graph.

00:48:39   And you will see exactly what ISO level it occurs at, so you don't have to guess. I don't know why they don't just list it in the specs, but they don't.

00:48:45   And finally, why doesn't Sony say that their cameras have this dual base ISO, which is a thing. And here's what the video had to say about that.

00:48:54   Sony reserves the term "dual base ISO" for something specific. In order for Sony to say a camera has dual base ISO, both base ISOs need to perform the same way with regard to noise performance and dynamic range.

00:49:06   And to Sony, the Alpha cameras don't qualify, mostly because they don't have the same amount of dynamic range at the higher base ISO as they do at the lower base ISO. We just got done saying they don't have the same dynamic range, they don't have the same noise performance.

00:49:16   Their video cameras do. So Sony's video cameras advertise, "Hey, we have dual base ISO!" But the photo cameras don't. You get trade-offs. You get less dynamic range for the little well or whatever.

00:49:29   And there's a Sony article that tries to explain this. It does a way worse job than the video, but we'll put it in the show notes anyway because it's an official source.

00:49:36   So there you have it. Something I definitely did not know about Sony cameras. Not all Sony cameras, but apparently more recent ones. They have this strange behavior where the performance of the sensor changes at a particular ISO level.

00:49:49   And by the way, it's not the same ISO level for every Sony camera. That's why you have to look at these charts to find out where it is.

00:49:55   And hopefully when you watch the video and you see what's actually happening inside your camera and how different it is from how you may be visualizing it if you came from the film world, it will help you realize all the different places in that chain where things can get screwed up.

00:50:09   And what effect the various controls on the back of your camera have on those various stages and what effects they don't have. Anyway, I thought this was fascinating.

00:50:17   And it shows a lot of light on the process that we think is magic where you just point a camera at something and the sensor does some of the magical stuff. And you get a picture. And as always, it's way more complicated than that.

00:50:28   As I was looking at watching this and figuring out how all this stuff works, what kind of blew my mind is thinking, "Wait a minute. They're not just reading the sensor when I push the shutter button.

00:50:40   They're reading the sensor in a mirrorless camera whenever you're seeing through the camera. Whenever you're watching the screen on the back or using the viewfinder, that sensor is sampling itself usually at least 60 times a second.

00:50:54   So it's doing all of that at least 60 times a second. That kind of blew my mind.

00:50:59   Yeah, that's part of the reason why. I remember when mirrorless was first coming up, one of the big complaints was, "Oh, it doesn't let you see through your lens. I can't actually see with my eyeballs the light."

00:51:10   Because the SLRs that had a mirror where the light would come into your camera, hit the mirror, bounce upward, hit another mirror, and then bounce into your eyeball.

00:51:18   So your eyeball would be literally seeing the photons that were entering your camera. But with mirrorless, that wasn't happening. With mirrorless, you're looking at a tiny little EVF electronic viewfinder, a little computer screen.

00:51:27   Your eyeball doesn't even get to see the light because it's shoved against the camera or whatever and how that's bad.

00:51:31   But there's many reasons why mirrorless eventually won out. But one of them is, you do get to see the entire imaging pipeline.

00:51:39   With an SLR, yeah, you get to see the photons, but you don't get to see, "What do my current exposure settings look like?"

00:51:48   On a mirrorless camera, it will show you, "Oh, you're way underexposing. Everything is dark. You can't see anything."

00:51:52   Because you get to see, if you were to take a picture now, here's more or less what it would look like.

00:51:57   It's not exactly the same because there's more stuff that happens when you hit a shutter, but it's much closer.

00:52:00   Whereas if you're just looking through a camera lens, your eye can adjust to an aperture that may be underexposed or whatever.

00:52:07   There are advantages and disadvantages, but I feel like the tradeoffs for mirrorless are well worth it, which the market seems to agree with.

00:52:15   I think the EVFs on all these cameras run at 120 frames per second, too. So again, there might be tradeoffs there where it's not doing the full imaging pipeline every time, but it's doing most of it.

00:52:24   One huge advantage that I found, because I shot SLRs with the mirrors for years, and at first I didn't like mirrorless more because I missed, when you look through the viewfinder,

00:52:38   I missed that experience of shooting that way when you're looking through the lens directly. You kind of have infinite refresh rate when you're looking through it like that, and it is very different.

00:52:49   Can I pause you there? We should probably re-explain the difference between mirror and mirrorless.

00:52:53   I can take a stab at it, but please, either of you jump in when you're ready.

00:52:56   In a big, big, big SLR camera, really anything with a mirror, there is literally a mirror behind the lens that takes all that light and pushes it up, kind of periscope style, up to the viewfinder.

00:53:07   This is what you guys were alluding to, or saying a second ago, is that you're literally seeing what the lens sees. Not what the sensor sees, but what the lens sees.

00:53:18   Whereas by comparison, and this is what you were talking about a second ago, Marco, with a mirrorless camera, that means there is no mirror, of course.

00:53:25   The only way for you to see what the camera sees is for the sensor to be reading what's coming through the lens, and then show that on a little LCD that's behind a viewfinder, or perhaps the bigger LCD that's on the back of the camera.

00:53:39   That's the difference between the two. Most cameras that I've used in my life, in fact I can't remember since film anyway, a time that I have used a mirrored camera.

00:53:48   Yeah, and it's kind of incredible that with the old mirror-equipped SLRs, every time you took a picture, that mirror would first flip up out of the way so that the light could hit the sensor.

00:54:01   And it was an incredibly complicated system. The mirror flips up, then the shutter behind it does its shutter thing, and then you get to see the picture on the back.

00:54:12   And that had a number of advantages. First of all, the sensor, they kind of had to do it that way first, because the sensors simply weren't advanced enough yet to give live video feeds for much of the SLRs development.

00:54:25   And then also, the huge advantage they had was battery life. Because you didn't have to be running the entire sensor imaging pipeline constantly to just see as you're waiting to take a shot.

00:54:38   You were sitting there waiting to take a shot, looking through the lens, through the mirror, and the camera was mostly idle as you were sitting there doing that.

00:54:46   And then when you took the shot, that's when it had to activate the sensor, do the image processing, but in that way they were only doing one image to be processed, just the one that you took, and then showing it on the screen.

00:54:58   The screen was on for a few seconds. But for the most part, unless you were shooting in what later came, later SLRs did add the continuous video mode where you could use the screen on the back continuously, and the mirror would flip up and just stay up.

00:55:14   And it would work the way mirrorless cameras do in a brief way. But when you weren't doing that, when you were just using it normally, the battery life of a regular SLR was incredible compared to the battery life of mirrorless cameras.

00:55:26   Now everyone just accepts worse battery life.

00:55:30   It's not that much worse, though. It's so much better than it was. Even the short period of time that I was buying interchangeable-lens Sony cameras, the battery life on these new ones is just phenomenal compared to what it used to be.

00:55:40   And part of that is just silicon shrinks and stuff like that, but part of it is just the efficiency of all of the parts on the inside.

00:55:47   The camera on my desk here, I wish my iPad had this kind of standby time. It just sits here for literal months, and every time I pick it up, it's still got charge.

00:55:57   Eventually it will go down to zero over the course of like four months. And I take these to the beach and I shoot literally 2,000 pictures and I have more than 50% battery life at the end of it.

00:56:06   So it's like, what more could you ask for? And by the way, the batteries are changeable and I have a spare if I actually needed it, but I've never needed it.

00:56:12   Now that I've gone to the Z size battery, whatever the big Sony size battery is, which is not that big, but the previous size battery, whatever the small one is, that one's not big enough.

00:56:21   But the Z size battery, especially since now that my A6600 also has the Z size battery in that tiny little camera, it's like infinity battery life.

00:56:29   It might as well be infinity because I go to sleep before everything's going to run. Maybe if I shot something where I was holding down the shutter for four hours straight at a sporting event, I would need to swap batteries.

00:56:39   But 2,000 pictures at the beach, no sweat.

00:56:42   Actually, the biggest thing I like about mirrorless and switching over, now that they're better, now that the EVFs have much faster frame rates than they used to, the battery life problem has been mostly or entirely solved depending on the system.

00:56:56   So now the advantages that mirrored SLRs had are mostly alleviated now by mirrorless being better, but my favorite thing is that the mirrorless cameras, because the viewfinder is a screen, what they usually do is when you are looking at the viewfinder, it just shows whatever it would have been showing on the back screen.

00:57:16   It senses your eyes there, it turns off the back screen, and it turns on the viewfinder. And my favorite thing is that in bright sun, when you hit play to review the picture you just took to see if you got it, you can look in the viewfinder and you can see the picture.

00:57:32   No matter what's going on around you, light wise or distraction wise or whatever, you can look through the viewfinder and see the picture you just took and review it to see, "Oh, did I get what I wanted to get?" That is my favorite thing about mirrorless, besides the fact that they're just way smaller.

00:57:47   But other than that, that's a game changer for me. And that's one thing where as I was looking at very small cameras, like looking at the Ricoh and the Fuji X100V and the Sony RX100 series and stuff like that, looking at all these small cameras, not all of them have EVFs.

00:58:05   And the ones that don't have them, I really miss it when it's gone. And even the cute little tiny pop-up EVF on the Sony RX100, I still found myself doing that and being very thankful it was there.

00:58:19   And so that to me has kind of become a must-have. If I'm going to buy a non-iPhone camera, it's got to have a viewfinder. And not necessarily because I always want to shoot through it or even frequently will shoot through it, but mostly because I want to be able to review pictures in bright sunlight.

00:58:35   I suppose I could just make the back screens way brighter, but that's probably harder.

00:58:39   Yeah, I mean a lot of them do have a super-duper bright mode, but I haven't really tried that because I assume that really would eat at my battery. In fact, when I'm at the beach, I just turn the back screen off, which also extends battery life. Because honestly, you can't see it at the beach. There's no point, right?

00:58:53   Yeah, I'm aware.

00:58:55   The viewfinder the whole time. I do kind of miss the sound of the mirror clacking up. That's another sort of kind of like floppy, listening to floppy disk drives thing that the younger generation probably won't be familiar with.

00:59:06   Because that was definitely an audio experience, but also you could feel it. There was the shutter, the mirror clacking up, the whole... I know SLR is pretty digital, but that whole experience is kind of going to disappear someday, I imagine.

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01:00:35   It is our turn to get grumpy, because believe it or not, we weren't yet. Or maybe the two-thirds of us. I don't know about all three of us. But I can tell you I'm grumpy in principle.

01:00:45   General Motors hates your iPhone. That is the headline from Jason Snell. It's six colors.

01:00:51   Jason has spent two episodes of Upgrade complaining and whining and moaning justifiably about what General Motors has said recently, reading from Jason's post.

01:01:04   General Motors has decided that the company's future electric cars will drop support for CarPlay and Android Auto, preferring the company's own infotainment system based on the lower-level Android Automotive operating system.

01:01:15   Essentially, all of GM's EVs will run Android and offer access to certain Android apps, but any hope of connecting your phone to the cars via any means beyond Bluetooth will be gone.

01:01:28   There's also a blog post from Gruber at Daring Fireball, which we'll put in the show notes. We'll put the original Reuters article in there.

01:01:37   And I just... why? I mean, I know why. The answer's money. The answer's always money. But why?

01:01:42   Well, read the Reuters thing, because that's the explanation.

01:01:45   Well, there's the stated explanation, and then there's the likely real explanations.

01:01:50   Well, I think the stated explanation is pretty close to the real one. Go ahead.

01:01:53   "Tires via GM EVs with the new systems will get access to Google Maps and Google Assistant, a voice command system at no extra cost for eight years," GM said.

01:02:02   GM said the future infotainment systems will offer applications such as Spotify's music service, Audible, and other services that many drivers now access via smartphones.

01:02:09   "We do believe there are subscription revenue opportunities for us," Kummer said.

01:02:15   GM executive Mary Barra is aiming for $20 to $25 billion—it's billion, with a B—in annual revenue from subscriptions by 2030.

01:02:26   So, the answer, as always, is money.

01:02:30   And the secondary answer is GM is dumb and bad at what they do. Because I know they want money, and I know it seems like that if we do this, we'll get more money, but I don't think they will.

01:02:43   Yeah, I think we can look back at different parts of tech and different eras that we've achieved or gotten to use, and certain times things are just better for consumers than they are at other times.

01:02:59   And it's usually because of some accident, or some standard was adopted, or some company got a whole bunch of other companies to agree to something that later on we don't get that kind of luxury again.

01:03:14   So think of when open ecosystems then become closed, centralized services, or become taken over by them, when services have APIs for a while and they shut down those APIs, things like this.

01:03:25   And I think we can look at the era that we are in now, where almost every new car sold, and many of the cars for the last few years that have been sold, support CarPlay and Android Auto, and therefore support pretty much any phone you're likely to have.

01:03:43   And if you have an older car that's older enough to have a DIN socket, you can get a double DIN radio to add CarPlay yourself fairly inexpensively and easily.

01:03:55   And so we're in this era right now where almost everything, asterisk Tesla and Rivian, but almost everything else supports CarPlay and Android Auto.

01:04:04   And it's wonderful as a consumer using these products, it's great because you can get into any reasonably recent car and there's a pretty good chance you'll be able to have these experiences.

01:04:15   And that's ultimately, that's what people want. They want to use their CarPlay and their Android Auto because it's better than all the crap the car makers make.

01:04:23   By far, it's way better. Even the car makers that actually used to make pretty good software interfaces by comparison to their peers, CarPlay's even better than what they do.

01:04:34   It's just better. And I'm going to tell you, I don't actually like CarPlay that much. But it's so much better than what the automakers have made.

01:04:43   And so we have this situation now where the automakers are totally marginalized in their UIs because all we want is get your crap out of the way so I can show my phone projection system on your display.

01:04:58   That's what we actually want. We actually want, get all your stupid custom stuff that you made that looks like, it looks like Elon Musk drew it usually.

01:05:06   Get all your, and I don't mean Tesla, I mean the ones that are worse. All the ones, you look at GM and all the vehicles that are marketed towards men.

01:05:17   Those have the most comically over-wrought, disgustingly bad UIs.

01:05:22   So you have all these car makers who just have done horrendous jobs in making UIs. It's not their skill set.

01:05:28   As screens have gotten more ubiquitous, as technical needs have gotten higher, as the graphical capabilities of these screens have gotten better over the years, the car makers have only gotten worse at making software for them.

01:05:42   Like Amazon with their Kindle UIs. The Kindle UI has only gotten worse over time as Kindles have gotten better screens and more computing resources.

01:05:51   Because it gives Amazon even more rope to hang themselves with in terms of their horrendous UI design.

01:05:58   And that's how cars have gotten too. Car UIs are horrendous and they keep getting worse as the screens keep getting higher resolution and we keep putting more controls on the screens.

01:06:07   The way everyone else is designing their screens is just getting worse.

01:06:10   But we have this great moment right now where for most new cars we can just connect our phones and get all their crap out of the way and have what we actually want.

01:06:23   I think that's temporary.

01:06:26   Usually when we have these kind of very consumer friendly, more open ecosystems, oftentimes it's in the earlier part of the market.

01:06:35   And what happens in the later parts of those markets is the people with the power realize they have the power and say, "Hey, why are we giving this away? Why are we letting other people control our stuff? Why are we not bringing this in house and reaping more benefits from it?"

01:06:49   So you can see this in lots of places all over tech, of course.

01:06:52   I think one of the more common places you see it recently is streaming services.

01:06:57   We used to have everything on Netflix. Over the years the various rights holders have realized, "Why don't we just launch our own service and take this off of everyone else's?"

01:07:06   And they have. And now that world is worse and more expensive than it was before.

01:07:13   That's just the reality. It's gotten worse for everyone.

01:07:16   Except for the people who run streaming services. Now we have to subscribe to 15 of them to get all the stuff we used to get in one or two.

01:07:23   The music industry has gone in and out of things like this.

01:07:27   These kinds of things are all over the tech world.

01:07:31   So I think the automakers have realized, "Wait a minute. Why are we letting Apple show whatever they want on our screens when we can have our own Maps app and we can have our own subscription pricing that we charge people and we can charge them the 12 bucks a month for their GPS service or whatever?"

01:07:50   Car makers want that revenue for themselves.

01:07:53   And so from their point of view, they're like, "Wait a minute. We're just going to take this back."

01:07:58   So we as consumers, we have a few things we can do in response to that.

01:08:03   We can refuse to buy those cars, but as Tesla has shown, sometimes the cars are compelling enough that we're willing to forget about that.

01:08:12   Or a lot of people just don't realize or they don't care, and they might not care until after they've driven off the lot and they're like, "Well, I guess this car doesn't support that. I guess I'll use the crappy Bluetooth or whatever."

01:08:23   But a lot of people don't realize or don't care. So those of us who do care, it's like we're kind of out of luck.

01:08:29   So we can say we're not going to buy these cars, but ultimately, this is GM today, and this is going to go one of two ways.

01:08:37   Either there's going to be enough backlash and they're going to see enough loss of sales that they're going to revert this decision and say, "Oh, never mind. We'll add CarPlay and intro auto back to these cars."

01:08:48   Or it's not going to affect the sales in a big enough way, and I think this is the more likely outcome.

01:08:54   And then other automakers are going to be like, "Wait a minute. We can do that too. Look, GM is making X billion dollars a year in recurring subscription revenue for their vehicles after sale by selling all these services on the touchscreen.

01:09:06   And no one's buying those on our cars because everyone's using their phones instead for free. So why don't we capture that value for ourselves?"

01:09:14   I heard Jason's arguments, and I think he's more optimistic that consumers will prevail here. I'm not that optimistic.

01:09:22   I honestly don't think that's the most likely outcome. I think the most likely outcome here is they're going to make a bunch of money from doing things themselves in a way that's worse for consumers, but we have not enough leverage over them in this way.

01:09:35   And then other automakers will follow. And I think we're going to look back on this time as, "Wow, wasn't it great when every car had CarPlay?" And in the future, it's going to be a lot more fragmented, I think.

01:09:46   Well, so GM is playing it safe here in that they're allowing Tesla and Rivian, the two big, highest-end, most high-profile, most, I'm not going to say most popular, because Rivian's not selling that many cars, but the best-reviewed EVs, let's say. They're allowing them to be the anchors, because the two best-reviewed EV makers, Tesla and Rivian, don't allow CarPlay or Android Auto.

01:10:11   And so GM is not doing this on all their cars. GM is only doing it on their EVs. And they're using the other popular EVs as an anchor and saying, "Well, this is just the way EVs are. When you have an EV, you know Tesla, they don't do this. You know Rivian, they don't do this. Well, with our EVs, we don't do this."

01:10:27   But with all the other GM cars, still CarPlay and Android Auto. And I don't know how many EVs GM sells compared to the other ones, but it's presumably a minority of the cars that GM sells.

01:10:39   So they're still kind of like dipping their toe in with this thing. And in this scenario, they're not at a competitive disadvantage if you're comparing EVs against EVs, which I think if you're shopping for a GM EV, maybe you are looking at other EVs more than you're looking at just other cars across the industry, right?

01:10:57   Yes, but I think almost every other EV, at least off the top of my head, every other EV other than Tesla and Rivian, and we probably shouldn't even be mentioning Rivian because their sales volume is so low, but pretty much everyone but Tesla, including Lucid, which by the way, I happened to see Lucid Air.

01:11:12   Yeah, Lucid just changed.

01:11:13   Yeah, and I happened to see one today for the first time. It looked pretty good. I was pretty impressed. But anyways, pretty much everyone else is including CarPlay to the best of my knowledge. I might not have that exactly, right? But effectively.

01:11:24   Right, but the best EVs are Tesla, Rivian, and Lucid.

01:11:27   I don't know, man. I don't know if that's true anymore. I really don't.

01:11:31   Let's say the best reviewed is the best way to sell it because...

01:11:34   That's very different, first of all. That's an extremely different thing.

01:11:38   They're the best. They are the best vehicles, so that's why they're the best reviewed. I don't think there's any debate there. I don't think anyone is looking at, you know, Tesla, Rivian, and Lucid and saying these are not the three best EVs in the classes that they compete, obviously.

01:11:51   I don't think anyone's looking at Lucid.

01:11:53   I agree.

01:11:53   Well, I mean, Lucid doesn't have any cars that people want to buy. They just have a sedan. Who wants sedans, right? But among the sedans, they make literally the best four-door sedan EV. So, I mean, it's not even close.

01:12:05   But also, I think you're underselling GM's existing EVs because I always get it backwards. It's either Bolt or Volt, and I always say the wrong one.

01:12:12   Yeah, no, they probably sell a lot of them, but it's, you know...

01:12:15   But they're actually really nice. Like, my parents have whatever it is.

01:12:18   Well, other than the fact that they had to recall all of them because the battery's catching fire, but, you know, that happens to everybody eventually.

01:12:23   I'm serious. Every EV maker is going to have some recall. Toyota had the wheels falling off with their stupid EV, which is not well reviewed.

01:12:30   Bolt had the batteries catching fire, which, like, you know, that's on the battery manufacturer. Like, those are grunt paints, right?

01:12:37   Yeah, everyone had those. Tesla had those. You don't have any recalls I had for my Tesla? A lot. And I didn't even...

01:12:41   And mine was, like, by the time I bought my first Tesla, it was already out for, like, four or five years before that.

01:12:47   Yeah, and Rivian had, like, the Bolts, like, something in the suspension components. They had the Bolts retightened or something like that.

01:12:52   Yeah, something like that. Everyone has those.

01:12:54   But, hold on. We're getting off track here. What I'm trying to say to you is, I do not accept your assertion that Tesla is still the only good option.

01:13:03   The Bolt, in my... I have driven my parents' Bolt. This is the prior generation. Now they have a different looking one.

01:13:10   Like, the GM has a different looking one. But my parents' Bolt, it is not as nice as a Tesla. I'll be the first to tell you that.

01:13:15   But given that it was, like, half or maybe a third the cost, whatever it was, it is actually surprisingly nice.

01:13:22   The Mustang Mach-E, surprisingly nice. I've not personally... And I've driven one of those very briefly.

01:13:27   I've not personally driven the new Kia and Hyundai EVs, but everything I've read is that they're really, really good.

01:13:35   So, yes, up until maybe a year or two years ago, it was basically Tesla or nothing.

01:13:40   And if you're a fancy lad, like arguably the three of us are, it's Tesla, Rivian or nothing.

01:13:45   But for regular people, I think there's a lot of really, really good options out there.

01:13:50   And I think GM is going to be cross-shopped with the Kias and the Hondys and all the other ones that are of roughly similar financial pain.

01:14:02   They'll also get cross-shopped with the Model 3, for sure. But I think there's a lot more options out there than you're giving them credit for and that are good.

01:14:08   Like I said, the reason I'm picking the best of the best is because that's GM's cover, right?

01:14:15   So what GM's cover is, see, we're being like the best of the best. Even though you're not cross-shopping against the Lucid Air because it's way too expensive,

01:14:22   being like Lucid is kind of like the companies that copy Apple, even though they're not really competing with Apple, because their cover is...

01:14:29   It's kind of like a value signaling. We're like the good ones that you can't afford.

01:14:34   We're like Tesla. We're like Rivian. We're like Lucid. We're not like those other lesser things, you know, Ford, Mach-E.

01:14:41   I know you think it's a good car, but don't you see how we're... It's a value statement. Kind of like pricing is a value statement.

01:14:47   This is a value statement. It's giving them cover to say, "We don't offer CarPlay because those expensive guys don't offer CarPlay, too."

01:14:54   And I get what you're saying, that they'll be cross-shopped with cars that are in similar market, although a Tesla Model 3 does kind of ruin that because it is kind of down in everybody's business in terms of pricing.

01:15:02   A little bit less so now because the Model 3 keeps creeping up in prices as Tesla goes down the tubes financially with some problems.

01:15:09   No, didn't they just drop prices again?

01:15:11   Yeah, they had to drop... They were creeping up, but then they had to drop them again because they want to sell cars. It's not a great situation over there.

01:15:19   But no, the Model 3 is very affordable.

01:15:21   Tesla's prices have never stayed the same for more than a few months. They've always changed wildly.

01:15:26   No, but I'm in Westchester for the moment and I'm looking around. This is ground zero for new, medium to high-end adoption of electric cars.

01:15:38   And I see there's still a ton of Teslas around. Still by far the number one. But I'm seeing a lot of the IONIQs. Is that Kia or Hyundai?

01:15:47   Hyundai. Hyundai. IONIQ 5 you're seeing? The SUV one?

01:15:50   Yeah, the IONIQ 5. Tons of Mach-Es. Tons of Teslas. There's now two Rivians within a block of my house. There is tons of them.

01:15:59   And I know this is not still even made, let alone was ever mass market, but I've been driving around Tif's little BMW i3. I freaking love that stupid car.

01:16:10   It's so stupid, but so good in so many ways.

01:16:14   Do they still make that?

01:16:15   No, I think they stopped last year or the year before.

01:16:17   Because all of a sudden I'm seeing that car everywhere. And it's not just because you mentioned it, because I've known you've owned it for years and years and years.

01:16:23   But there's so many i3s and I've seen it. Maybe I'm seeing the same three over and over again, but where are you getting these i3s from? I guess they bought them used?

01:16:29   Well, the great thing was you could get a great deal on them because nobody wanted them. So we got an amazing deal on ours.

01:16:35   There are so many good electric cars and there's more coming out all the time. The market is big and growing. And now you can kind of tell, now that the more modern ones are required to make weird noises as they run for pedestrians to hear.

01:16:52   As I'm walking around, I'll hear something weird drive by and I'll look and it'll be something I don't even recognize.

01:16:58   But it's clearly an electric vehicle. Some kind of weird mid-sized SUV crossover thingy. That's some brand, I don't know.

01:17:05   But they're everywhere. There's so many. And they're all different. And by most reviews, they're pretty much all really good.

01:17:12   As you pointed out before, electric cars, just having an electric drivetrain is just a massive upgrade in so many ways from gas cars that you can have an otherwise fairly mediocre car.

01:17:22   But people will love the thing because electric cars are just good overall.

01:17:27   They're the SSDs of the car world. Everyone loves their first SSD and everyone loves their first electric car even if it actually sucks.

01:17:33   Right. But it might suck in some ways, but it's so much better in other ways that you just love the thing.

01:17:40   TIS i3 is like an ancient platform. It only has like 150 miles of range. But the thing is great. It's a great little car. And people love the things.

01:17:53   They didn't love it at the price that BMW tried to sell it for. That was the main problem with the i3.

01:17:57   Well, and it was very early to the market. It was very ahead of its time. I think its carbon fiber tub design was extremely expensive.

01:18:04   Yeah, that's why it was so expensive. And also it's a shape of car that Americans don't like.

01:18:10   But you know what? It's an amazing shape. We have fit so much in that car and it's such a small car.

01:18:16   It's very practical, but Americans do not like that.

01:18:18   It's basically a tall bubble. It has no footprint. You can fit in every parking spot. You can do a U-turn in a street without doing a three-point turn.

01:18:28   Just turn around. The turning radius is amazing on it. It's so small. But because it's tall, you have great visibility out the whole thing.

01:18:36   You can fit anywhere. And it actually holds a surprising amount of stuff given its size. I love the thing.

01:18:43   And no one's making that anymore. No one's making anything close to that size right now in the American market, which is kind of unfortunate.

01:18:50   But anyway, there are so many good electric cars. And your assertion -- I forgot even what we're arguing about -- but your assertion --

01:18:56   I was saying they're using the better brands as cover for their decision. Let me finish, because like I said before, there are ideas like, "And we'll make more money from this."

01:19:06   The reason I don't think they're going to and the reason I think this is absolutely the wrong decision and the reason I think that even if the entire industry goes the way you said, Marco,

01:19:12   and they all realize, "Hey, we can do this thing," like basically it's a chain of using the higher-end brands as cover and it goes all the way down and they all get rid of CarPlay and Android Auto,

01:19:20   it will be a terrible mistake and it will eventually be reversed. And here's why. These car makers do not have software platforms.

01:19:28   They don't have app stores. They don't have APIs. They don't have operating systems. They do not have a software platform. None of them do.

01:19:35   None of them have a glimmer of a hope of ever having one and none of them currently have one. We can name all the software platforms off the top of our head.

01:19:43   Windows, Mac OS, Android, iOS, that's pretty much all the ones that matter. This is tailing off with the TV OS and the watch OS and the stuff like that.

01:19:52   That's it. What does it take to have a software platform? You've got to have APIs. You've got to have developers. You've got to have a developer program.

01:19:58   You've got to have support for them. You've got to have an SDK. You've got to have an IDE. You've got to have a platform that you do development on.

01:20:04   You have to revise those things.

01:20:06   Bug tracker, documentation.

01:20:08   Yeah, well, you know, less so with Apple. We know what it takes to have a software platform. None of these car makers have that.

01:20:16   Nor should they because it's such a huge business. There have only been a small number of those in the literal history of the world and making new ones has proven to be extremely, extremely difficult after the Cambrian explosion of the early PC days and the subsequent consolidation.

01:20:31   And why does that matter? Because software platforms allow developers to produce software that has not existed before. Waze at one point didn't exist and then somebody made Waze.

01:20:43   And it turns out Waze is a good thing to use in a car. If those platforms didn't exist, iOS, Android, or whatever, no one is writing Waze for the BMW platform or any other single car platform.

01:20:56   I almost wrote Overcast for the BMW platform, just whatever it's worth.

01:21:00   It's just not economically feasible for individual car makers to have their own platforms that are going to have innovation.

01:21:06   We know where people are writing applications. They're writing it for the popular platforms. Maybe someday they'll be writing for somebody's headset or whatever. We'll find out at WWDC.

01:21:13   But right now they're writing them for iOS, they're writing them for Android, and to a lesser extent, Mac, Windows, whatever.

01:21:17   Those are the software platforms. So if these car makers kick software platforms out of the car, which is what they're doing, if they don't allow car play, those are ways for those existing software platforms to allow applications developed for those platforms to get into the car.

01:21:33   If car makers kick them out, if they think, "Hey, we'll just write all the applications ourselves." No you won't, you suck at this. And even if you didn't, nobody can write all their own applications.

01:21:42   Even Nintendo can't get by only with first party games. Nintendo is Nintendo, you are not Nintendo.

01:21:48   If you have none of those applications, you will just have a lesser platform. You say, "Okay, well if everybody does that, then just everyone will have crap applications."

01:21:56   Ah, but if everyone has crap applications, the singular of the car company, singular with a C, the singular of the car world will say, "You know what? Everybody else kicked all the other software platforms out, but you know what, Apple, Android? We're going to invite you back in."

01:22:10   And suddenly, it's their unique selling proposition for whatever brand of car this is that decides to do this, like the last place competitor singular, right?

01:22:18   It says, "iPhone, you can come on our platform." And suddenly, people are looking at singular again.

01:22:23   No one was looking at singular before, but hey, you know what, if you want the iPhone, the literal only place to get it is on singular, which will eventually be called AT&T.

01:22:30   And I was never a fan of singular/AT&T before, but they have the iPhone, so I'm going over there.

01:22:35   That's what'll happen, and it'll just reverse and ripple back through, because there is absolutely no way that any of these car makers are going to make a successful software platform.

01:22:43   They're delusional if they think that you can either make one of their own, which will never, never, never work, or we don't need a software platform. We'll just write all the applications in-house.

01:22:52   Go ahead, do that. You'll get singulared. That's what'll happen. And it may take two decades of pain and suffering, to Marco's point.

01:22:57   It'll suck for us the whole time if this reverses and goes through the whole industry and we've got to wait for a whole other decade-long cycle for these idiots to get their heads out of their butts.

01:23:06   But inevitably, it will happen, because there is no fighting against software platforms. That's where the innovation happens.

01:23:12   Wherever the platforms are popular, where developers are making software, that's where it happens.

01:23:16   And look at Waze. It's like, well, that's software innovation for cell phones. We want software innovation for cars.

01:23:22   That also happened on the phone. Phones aren't cars, but that's where all the good applications for cars came from.

01:23:28   Because people can bring their phones into their cars. So there's just, there's literally, it's like the worst decision ever to decide,

01:23:35   I don't want any of the world's most popular software application platforms to be able to use their software integrated into my car.

01:23:42   We're not saying like you've got to let them take over everything like Apple wanted to do, where they take over the instrument cluster and the climate controls or whatever.

01:23:47   Like, by all means car makers, keep the car stuff to yourself. All we're saying is carve out a little place on your dashboard for Android and iOS and whatever the hell future platforms,

01:23:58   you know, the headset thing, who knows, whatever, for that app ecosystem to be in your cars.

01:24:04   You should be thanking them so that they allow their apps to be in your cars, because they add value to your cars, value you can never make yourselves,

01:24:12   because you're never going to make a software platform as good as any of those.

01:24:16   And even if you did, it wouldn't matter because you're just one car company. If you're like, well, I'll make a platform for all car companies and everybody will use Ford OS.

01:24:23   Yeah, good luck with that. Well, I'll make a platform that's independent of any car company. Yeah, that's called iOS or Android for now.

01:24:28   For now, iOS is independent of any car company and so is Android. Once Google starts making their cars, Apple starts making their cars, it makes things more complicated if that ever happens.

01:24:36   But GM, this is a terrible decision. I know you think it's defensible. And I'm sure, like, you know, if it works the way Marco says,

01:24:44   for the next decade, you'll make those billions of dollars of revenue and then the executives who were in charge of that will retire and tell their grandkids how successful they were as executives.

01:24:51   But then when they die some point later, you'll have to reverse course because this is a bad decision.

01:24:56   All right, two counterpoints. Number one, Tesla. Tesla is very successful, despite what we think of their, you know, stupid leader.

01:25:06   They are a very successful car company that makes overall...

01:25:10   First mover advantage and they have good cars.

01:25:12   Yeah, overall very good cars and people are very happy with them for the most part.

01:25:16   And so they have never supported CarPlay or Android Auto and it doesn't seem like that's in the cards for them.

01:25:22   I think they seem to feel pretty strongly about not doing that. And they have all their own built-in stuff.

01:25:28   And it is not great, but it is, first of all, it's the best I've ever used that wasn't Apple designed.

01:25:35   There's lots of issues I have with Tesla's UI and especially the weird redesigns that they did over time when I owned those cars.

01:25:43   But their in-car UI was the best I've seen until Rivian. Rivian I think is a little bit nicer, but it's overall very similar in terms of quality and design work.

01:25:55   Whereas everyone else is well below the two of them as far as I've seen.

01:26:01   But the point is Tesla shows that you actually don't need CarPlay.

01:26:05   That you can be a wildly successful car maker making cars that people generally love and are willing to keep buying even though you don't have CarPlay.

01:26:14   So that is a pressure on them though. Everyone always wants Tesla to integrate CarPlay.

01:26:19   And the more competitors Tesla gets in terms of, "Hey, here's a pretty decent EV."

01:26:23   You can say, "Well, it's not as good as Tesla." But the counterbalance is, "Yeah, but this one has CarPlay or Android Auto."

01:26:29   That is a competitive disadvantage. I understand Tesla is run by a stubborn child who's going to do whatever. There's no reasoning with that.

01:26:37   But it's still, I'm not saying it's a fatal decision for Tesla, but it is a disadvantage. It's increasingly a disadvantage because if everybody else has it and you don't, that's a disadvantage for you.

01:26:47   Now again, if the whole rest of the industry goes the way of Tesla, then that ceases to become a disadvantage.

01:26:51   And then Tesla looks even better because they have decent software.

01:26:54   But there is pressure on them right now anyway to integrate Android Auto and CarPlay.

01:27:01   The fact that they're just not giving into it because again, they're run by a stubborn child who doesn't really listen to reason, that doesn't mean anything one way or the other.

01:27:08   They're very successful because they made really good cars and they had a first mover advantage.

01:27:11   Exactly.

01:27:12   And that's a way to have an advantage. But in the disadvantage column is no Android Auto or CarPlay. It's just that their advantage column outweighs that.

01:27:24   So I don't think they're proof. Again, if you had some company that could make cars as good as Tesla and as cheaply as Tesla and also had CarPlay and Android Auto, they would be better for them.

01:27:34   And again, I think that why did Lucid backslide? Because Lucid was also out of the gate without supporting either one of them and very recently Lucid added support.

01:27:42   I think Lucid's doing it because they have many disadvantages against Tesla and that nobody knows who they are.

01:27:47   And this is their very first car and so on and so forth. And they're like, we need a little bit more in the advantage column. What can we do?

01:27:53   Easy. CarPlay integration. Tesla doesn't have it. We do.

01:27:56   It's a little thing, but I'm saying industry-wide, deciding that the whole industry doesn't need popular software platforms is just a big mistake.

01:28:05   Second counterpoint. What GM is doing is not just making their own OS from scratch. What they're doing is switching to Android Automotive.

01:28:15   Now Android Automotive is not Android Auto. And it's a quick recap. We covered this a few months back, but basically Android Auto is like CarPlay. Show a projection of your phone on a screen in the car.

01:28:26   Android Automotive is an entire real-time OS that takes over the gauge clusters and everything else in the car and is the car's UI.

01:28:35   And the car makers can work with Google to customize Android Automotive to be the underlying OS of the entire in-car system. The entertainment system, the screens, everything else.

01:28:47   And Android Automotive, there are apps for it. There are third-party apps for it, I think. But it's a very, very small selection and it's very different requirements and everything.

01:28:58   So it's never going to be a healthy ecosystem by any means. It's always going to be a smaller subset. But there at least is a path.

01:29:06   But what I think is going to happen is Android Automotive, because it's the new baseline, it's going to be like Android in a bad way.

01:29:18   Where all the manufacturers are going to eventually switch over over the long haul. I think they're all going to switch over to Android Automotive as their base OS for their tech stack.

01:29:27   But they're going to customize it and limit it and restrict it like crazy because they can. The same way that carriers used to heavily restrict Android and customize it.

01:29:37   And they would build their own special experience on top of it that had only their apps and required only their subscription stores and all that other crap.

01:29:45   It's going to be like old carrier branding on phones where the Verizon Motorola phone was running Motorola's OS but it was full of Verizon garbage and you couldn't change it.

01:29:57   And you couldn't install whatever you wanted. That's going to be what happens here, I think.

01:30:01   Where it is Android Automotive underneath and I think it's going to be a very popular choice over time for car makers. But it's not going to give you the kind of freedom and flexibility that CarPlay and Android Auto do where you're just running apps off your phone and it can be pretty much whatever you want.

01:30:16   If it comes out like the cell phone market though, say that becomes the Android of the automotive world which would be fitting given its name. The money in the mobile phone market is not so much on Android. Even though iPhone has minority market share, it has majority revenue and profit share.

01:30:32   And if these car companies want to make a lot of money, following the Android route is probably not going to be as lucrative as following the iPhone. And also, Android being massively successful in the most popular mobile phone platform in the world did not eliminate the iPhone from existence.

01:30:46   Also, it didn't take money, it didn't make the iPhone have a minority of the profits or revenue either.

01:30:51   So that's a problem for these companies, especially the high end ones because as long as Apple still exists and still has the customers with all the money and still makes the most money on its platforms and still continues to have CarPlay as a thing that exists, someone, some singular is going to take them up on that offer and say, "Hey, everybody else has got Android Automotive with that limited selective Android automotive things and the carrier junk all over everything and so on and so forth and it's the most popular automotive platform in the world."

01:31:16   It probably already is by the way. Android Automotive is probably the most popular. Tons of car companies use it. I think even Casey's Volvo uses it at this point.

01:31:22   It's the most popular in the world, but if you want to make money, you got to support the Apple thing because that's where the money is, right?

01:31:30   I think car makers, if they think, "This will play out just like the phone market did," that is not a positive scenario for them because they pick the one that doesn't make all the money.

01:31:39   And nobody is apparently picking the one that does make the money. So we'll see how it goes. And also, by the way, building on top of Android Automotive is the same thing that these car companies give lip service to.

01:31:50   Like, "Oh, why are we letting some other company own the platform that runs our cars?" Well, you're already doing that and you know why? Because you suck so bad at it that you said, "Let's just go to Android."

01:31:58   A lot of car companies tried to make their own and did such a bad job that they said, "You know what? We changed our mind. We're just going to use Android Automotive and brand it."

01:32:04   Well, but I think there was a lot of random middleware being sold, QNX-based whatever is going on. They weren't writing their own OSs.

01:32:12   Yeah, because in the car industry, the car companies don't make the things themselves. Suppliers do. I forgot who the big supplier was of infotainment before Android Automotive swept through the industry, but they didn't make good software either.

01:32:22   And by the way, Android Automotive is CarPlay compatible. One of the things it can do is show a CarPlay window and it's fine. So it's really just down to, like, as the carrier in this model, they're going to just disable that. Like, they're just going to not allow that to run.

01:32:39   Like I said, when you say a car supports CarPlay, it's probably running Android Automotive and it's just showing CarPlay in the little carve-out for it that Android Automotive provides. Do either of you recall if BMW switched Android Automotive recently, too?

01:32:52   Oh, I don't know. That would surprise me.

01:32:54   I don't know either.

01:32:55   I think they were so proud of their software platform and I think they were one of the last holdouts, but I think I recall a story where they finally gave in. I don't know. Someone from BMW will write it and tell us.

01:33:15   I think it's kind of like, it doesn't look, there's no...

01:33:25   I haven't seen a screenshot and I'm not going to look it up while I'm talking, but I thought it was at least slightly obvious that it was Android, but I may be wrong about that.

01:33:32   It looks different, maybe if you know what to look for, but they're heavily branded. I think the Hondas are Android Automotive at this point, too. The Hondas look like Honda, right? The Kia ones look like Kia, the Hyundai ones look like Hyundai, and it could be Android Automotive under the covers.

01:33:46   It is a lower level thing and to Marco's point, the "carriers" can customize it up the wazoo. That's the point of that platform. I think that's what Apple was trying to do with their thing. Who knows where that's going, but they had the same idea. Look, we're just like Android Automotive.

01:33:58   Oh no, Apple would never in a million years allow any kind of customization like this.

01:34:02   That was their pitch, was you can use our thing and you can customize it with your look and feel, but you're right that they would allow less customization.

01:34:08   Yeah, it'll be like, give us a tint color.

01:34:10   I think it'll be more than tint color, but less than Android Automotive.

01:34:14   Not much more than tint color.

01:34:16   I don't know where that effort is going. I remember it was in an event presentation and I haven't heard much about it, but things move slowly in the automotive industry, so we'll see where it goes. Again, Android Automotive has taken years and years for every car company to eventually give in and say, "We give up trying to give money to..."

01:34:32   I wish I knew what the manufacturer was, but there's a bunch of infotainment manufacturers that took on this, "Hey, we'll make the interfaces to your things." And they made them in the 90s and they made them with bitmap displays and then they just couldn't keep up. And so Android Automotive has kind of taken over that type of thing.

01:34:46   Even though it seems like it's technically related, it is business model independent of this decision because you can use Android Automotive and choose not to support CarPlay or Android Auto at all. I'm assuming GM is using Android Automotive and is also choosing not to support CarPlay or Android Auto with it.

01:35:06   But they are choosing to support things like Spotify and stuff like that, so they do deals with Spotify, just like they do deals with Sirius, all the car makers did that. They see the dollar signs in that and it is a way to make money.

01:35:16   "Oh, we don't have an app platform and we're never going to make one, but you can get Spotify, you can get Audible, and you can get Sirius XM if they still exist, and whoever we partnered with, we'll take your money for that."

01:35:26   It's like OnStar and all the modern versions of OnStar and Sirius Radio, these type of deals. But that's not a software platform. The next time the next really good car app comes out, again, for all we know it could be a glasses/headset car app or something, they're not going to have it.

01:35:43   But the CarPlay ones will, because CarPlay is like, "Look, we don't know what's going to be in this little rectangle. I just decide where the rectangle is and how you navigate to and from it, and it shows what's on your phone platform, and that is an entire platform that we don't own, that we don't control, but that we don't have to support, and that somebody else fosters innovation in, and somehow developers make these amazing applications, and then voila, they get to appear in our car, which makes us have an easier sales pitch versus Tesla, which doesn't allow that to happen."

01:36:09   I don't know. I think it's more likely that they'll do a couple of deals. They'll have Sirius and Spotify, and that'll be it, and people will say, "Okay, I guess that's enough."

01:36:23   If you look at what people actually use on CarPlay, it's not a large number of apps. It's Apple's built-in stuff, and maybe a third-party mapping app, which is almost certainly Google Maps or Waze. That's just two. They're even both owned by the same company.

01:36:43   Even Apple Maps, because I feel like Apple Maps is, at this point, better than the in-car navigation of any car.

01:36:48   Oh, it is. When you look at what people are actually using, it's one map app that might already be Google Maps, and therefore might already be included in Android Automotive, and then also whatever their streaming music app is of choice, which is most likely Spotify for most people.

01:37:04   All they have to do is make a deal with one or two music-playing services, and that's it.

01:37:20   You don't know where the next Waze is going to come from. You don't know where the next Spotify is going to come from. You don't even know that Spotify is going to be on the top of streaming audio forever, because at one point it wasn't, and right now it is. That's what a platform is. It's a place where no matter who ends up being on top, if we're running our platform right, you can get that on our platform, because we have the customers with the money, and so here we are.

01:37:40   Again, we may be in for a decade of very dark times where you can't use these things on any platforms, but I think inevitably it's going to have to come back around, because there's no defeating software platforms. That's where the innovation happens.

01:37:50   And that view you have is exactly the right view of a short-sighted executive who's going to retire soon, which is like, "Look, for the next 10 years that I'm working, we're going to do this deal. We're going to make tons of money that I'm going to retire." Success.

01:38:00   But on the long view, if you're not supporting a software platform, eventually all those deals that you made with those companies for those individual car things, they will not be on top anymore.

01:38:10   And the ones that are going to be on top will rise to the top, not on the market of things that do special deals with BMW and GM, but on whatever the popular platform of the day is, whether it's still mobile phone platforms or headset platforms or whatever the heck it is.

01:38:22   That's where the new things come from. That's where they rise up. Instagram doesn't rise to fame as a Windows application. It rises to fame as an application on a platform that Windows didn't even worry about until it was too late. That's what will happen in the future.

01:38:36   I hope you're right.

01:38:38   But I don't think that's a foregone conclusion. I hope you're right, though.

01:38:44   Yeah, I think there's a couple of interesting things here. I see both of your points, and I think there's more to truth to what Marco's saying than I want to admit, because I really don't want to lose carplay in the cars, whatever cars I buy in the future.

01:38:59   But, you know, I think a lot of the justification that a lot of people, particularly the EV manufacturers are making, is that, "Hey, we want to be able to do a really good job of helping you navigate and charge your car as you're on a road trip."

01:39:13   I genuinely don't have the faintest idea if there's one or several apps that do a good job of this. And honestly, it doesn't really matter for the point I'm trying to make.

01:39:22   But what happens if there is a way, or even ways itself, for mapping and charging, where it is able to figure out Electrify America, Tesla, whatever else.

01:39:35   Those already exist.

01:39:36   Doesn't Google Maps do that already?

01:39:38   No, but there's already apps that do this. There's like Plugshare and a bunch of other ones.

01:39:42   But do it incredibly well, to the point that Waze is the de facto standard for most people that commute.

01:39:48   Is there something, and honestly yes or no, it doesn't really matter, but what if there is a Waze for EVs, not in terms of traffic, but in terms of route planning and whatnot.

01:39:58   And I think that GM, particularly, reciting route planning is one of the reasons that they want to control the whole widget, is because, "Oh, we'll do route planning better than anyone else."

01:40:06   And I think if there becomes a de facto standard, or maybe there is, again, if there is one it doesn't matter, but if and when that time comes, then it's going to be a real competitive disadvantage not to have Waze or the route planning thing with charging on your electric car.

01:40:27   And that's going to make all these non-CarPlay, non-Android auto electric cars seem real bad. That's just one path to where it can become a real competitive disadvantage.

01:40:35   Furthermore, at least for now, all these other makers, Kia, Hyundai, a lot of these other ones, Chevy at the moment, they're all offering Android auto, they're all offering CarPlay, and I think people are turning to them more and more.

01:40:48   I'm seeing more and more of these regular people EVs over time.

01:40:52   I also wanted to point out, this was linked from Gruber's post, there was an interview between the Rivian CEO, RJ Skerringe, I think is how you pronounce it, and MKBHD.

01:41:03   MKBHD specifically asked him, what's the deal with the lack of CarPlay, and the quote from the CEO was, "The thing about controlling the software stack is we get to continually make it better.

01:41:13   So you've had your R1T, you've hopefully seen this every few weeks, we have a new software release that either adds features, addresses gaps, we listen to feedback, and our head of software development is on Reddit all the time hearing what people are saying."

01:41:24   He continues later, "It drives our software roadmap and makes sure that we're delivering what customers want."

01:41:29   First of all, if you were delivering what they'd want, you'll give them frickin' CarPlay, but leaving that aside, I think the one advantage that the good EV, or the software-friendly EV makers, which is basically Tesla and Rivian,

01:41:41   the one advantage that they have, especially compared to Apple, is that they can innovate and deliver fast.

01:41:47   Now, I would also argue that it's not as big a deal for Apple, because CarPlay itself doesn't need to innovate as much when you're offloading the mapping to another app,

01:41:56   when you're offloading the charging to another app, when you're offloading the listening to podcasts to another app.

01:42:01   But it is an interesting counterpoint, even though I am 1000% Team CarPlay/Android Auto, it's an interesting counterpoint that at least these software-heavy car companies actually deliver in a speed that certainly, I can't speak for Android, but certainly Apple is not delivering at that speed right now.

01:42:19   I mean, yeah, they are fine, but that seems like an independent concern. They should do that for all the things that their software controls, which is the whole rest of the car.

01:42:28   The climate controls, all the features of the car, the instrument cluster, the automatic self-driving driver aid things, that's their job.

01:42:37   And the fact that they're iterating better than Apple, I mean, we know that's not Apple's strength.

01:42:42   But still, in terms of the platform, every year Apple has a new iOS, and in general they get better and have more features.

01:42:49   CarPlay itself may be a much slower rate of innovation there, but I feel like the main job of CarPlay is connectivity, which they have done at least something, they went from wired to wireless.

01:42:58   I feel like there's still room for improvement there, but they did something there.

01:43:02   It's mostly just about make a place on the dashboard where our software ecosystem can have a foothold.

01:43:08   And then exposed to that software ecosystem will be all the applications on iPhone or on iOS or on Android that want to be useful in a car.

01:43:18   So even something like a podcast player, for example, might have awareness that CarPlay exists and provide support for it that's different than when you're holding your phone, so you can use Overcast while you're in your car.

01:43:28   And certainly mapping applications like Waze are motivated to do that, even though you can also use it by just having the phone mounted on your dashboard.

01:43:35   I think the whole idea of sticking your phone to your dashboard is a weird thing that we have to do during this transition, and if things go the Marco way and we have these dark days where everyone kicks off Android Auto and CarPlay, people will go back to sticking their phones in the dashboard.

01:43:52   We've already proven that we're willing to do it.

01:43:54   That's what I do.

01:43:55   You do it in your Tesla, or you'll probably end up doing it in the Eurybian.

01:44:00   I do it in my car that has CarPlay.

01:44:02   Why?

01:44:03   We've gone over this because it's better.

01:44:05   Because CarPlay is nice to have, but it's actually not that good in certain ways.

01:44:11   Admittedly, it's better than not having it, but sometimes you have to actually see the phone for something.

01:44:20   Like Waze in CarPlay is kind of buggy, and sometimes you have to do stuff on the phone.

01:44:26   Sometimes you have to enter stuff on the phone.

01:44:29   It's not great. Ideally, you don't do that while you're moving.

01:44:33   What's great about a dashboard clip for your phone is that you don't have to worry about all this crap that they're doing with disabling CarPlay or whether your car has it or not.

01:44:42   You can just put your phone there. Done.

01:44:44   Then it's the same, and you can use Waze the regular way that is the most reliable way to use Waze.

01:44:50   People are familiar with their phones. That's the main advantage that it has.

01:44:54   It's not learning a new thing. You already have your phone. You already use it all the time.

01:45:00   It is a familiar interface in place for you.

01:45:02   Which in many ways makes it safer, honestly.

01:45:04   Nah, I wouldn't go that far.

01:45:06   Obviously, the way it's less safe is if you get tempted to start texting people. That's obviously worse.

01:45:11   But with CarPlay, you have a learning curve, and you have to futz with stuff a little bit more.

01:45:18   But it has bigger targets in CarPlay.

01:45:20   And there's less you can do. The advantage of CarPlay is if you try to do something that you shouldn't be doing in your car, it just won't let you. You just can't.

01:45:28   The downside is you actually might spend a decent amount of time scrolling around the screen and possibly having your eyes partially off the road.

01:45:38   If it was just using your phone in a dock right next to the steering wheel, you could actually be faster and have your eyes off the road less time.

01:45:45   So it's kind of a complicated balance there. It isn't entirely on one side or the other.

01:45:51   But we will always have that option as long as they keep having Bluetooth that exists.

01:45:57   Ideally we have better options, but we might not.

01:46:00   In some scenarios you don't even need any car connectivity. I'm kind of amazed this hasn't happened.

01:46:04   I know car makers have done this incredibly stupid thing, which I think we'll look back on and laugh at it right now.

01:46:10   Where very high-end luxury cars in the back seat, like in the center armrest, they'll have an Android tablet that comes with the car.

01:46:17   It really happens all the time. A literal Android app. It'll be branded and it'll be hidden that it's Android, but it'll be an Android app tablet and you'll be able to put it on your lap and adjust the climate control.

01:46:27   All sorts of silliness, right? And we're talking about holders on the dashboard that we stick our phones to, which is made way easier and cooler by MagSafe.

01:46:35   I'm a convert now that I don't have to use a stupid clip. I use the MagSafe. It's great.

01:46:38   But it's kind of amazing that no one has, as far as I'm aware, said, "You know what? We're going to do the instrument cluster, climate controls, driving controls, cruise control, all that stuff."

01:46:48   But in the place in our dashboard where normally there would be a big touchscreen, we're not going to put that there.

01:46:57   Instead, just stick your iPad there. It's basically an iPad mount.

01:47:01   And you don't even need any connectivity to the car because if you want to run a cool mapping application on a huge screen, just use your iPad.

01:47:08   Or the luxury bands are like, "Our car comes with an iPad." But no one's willing to do that. They all come with junky Android tablets.

01:47:13   No one has been willing to say, "Guess what? The center touchscreen on our dashboard, it's an iPad."

01:47:17   I mean, obviously Apple would do that, right? If anyone's going to do that, Apple would. But no car maker has done it yet.

01:47:23   You see just how many times, like, we were talking about how many people use cases on their phone. Go through a parking lot, and next time you're in a big place with a big parking lot, look in all the cars and see how many of them have a place to mount a phone.

01:47:35   And then count how many of those cars already have CarPlay, but like Marco, choose to mount the phone anyway.

01:47:42   It is a really common thing, and I think if Android Auto and CarPlay ever go away entirely, people will just continue to mount their phones.

01:47:49   And I would hope that car executives would be like, the reason I think a lot of people integrated CarPlay is they understood, as drivers of cars themselves and as observers of the car industry,

01:47:59   "Hey, you know, I look around and I see a lot of people with their cell phones mounted to their car dashboard. Can we make them not do that? Because it seems like we're trying to design interiors of our cars, but now all of a sudden we have to account for where they're going to try to mount a phone.

01:48:14   Why don't we just let them see their phone display?" And then Apple's like, "Hello, CarPlay, we've been out here yelling to you for a month." Like, "Okay, well, we'll do that."

01:48:20   For me, I think that's one of the main reasons that CarPlay even exists, is because people voted with their dashboard mounts and said, "We want this in our cars, and if you don't put it in our cars, I'm going to block your carefully designed instrument panel or center stack or whatever.

01:48:37   I'm going to block your climate control vents. I'm going to put 'I need to use this while I'm in the car' if you don't let me."

01:48:44   I feel like that's part of the reason that cell phone projection interfaces even exist. And we'll just go back there again. If they take them all away, I think people will just go back to it again.

01:48:53   I don't think, you know, the Rivian message here about, like, you know, "We want to control the whole stack, we want to do the whole thing," that's what they all say when they're trying to be like, they have delusions of grandeur into thinking that they are going to make a software platform.

01:49:04   Like, we're as good as Apple, we can make a full software platform, we can do everything ourselves.

01:49:09   Kind of like Steve Jobs saying, "Here's the iPhone, Apple's going to write all the applications itself." That's tenable, right? No, not tenable.

01:49:15   And if they had stuck with that, it would have been a terrible decision, right?

01:49:18   So I feel like the car makers are kind of in the same situation, whether they're lying to themselves or lying to us, it's hard to say, but I say, by all means, iterate, listen to feedback, do a great job on your interior interfaces, consider physical buttons.

01:49:33   They're really important. But people want the current popular platform, which right now is cell phones, in their cars in some form or another.

01:49:43   And if you don't give it to them, they're going to stick it to your dashboard with a piece of tape or something.

01:49:47   I've already ordered the Rivian mount for ProClip USA.

01:49:52   You're preemptively just, like, blocking it. I mean, the Rivian's so big inside, you have plenty of room for it.

01:49:58   And sometimes they go out of stock for certain vehicle models, so I'm like, "Just in case, I should probably, you know, I'll take the $20 risk and I'll order this now."

01:50:07   Yeah, I bet some people have had iPads. Like, thinking of the whole...

01:50:11   Oh yeah, I've seen iPad minis in Ubers and stuff.

01:50:14   Yeah, I was going to say Uber, Lyft, their whole business is based on that type of thing.

01:50:19   Kind of like Square, you remember the Square iPad, paying the Square?

01:50:22   Mm-hmm.

01:50:23   That type of thing. There have been places where iPads have appeared, but just the phone is so much more ubiquitous, or any kind of phone, not just the iPhone.

01:50:29   But phones are so much more ubiquitous that it's much more common.

01:50:32   But I bet there are people out there who have iPads, especially iPad minis, mounted to their cars as just basically bigger phones.

01:50:38   Yeah, they totally do. I've seen it, like, more than once.

01:50:41   Yeah, it's...

01:50:42   And for the record, too, I watched that Rivian interview with MKBHD. I didn't necessarily take the CEO's answer as, "We will never do CarPlay."

01:50:53   I kind of took it as, like, "We're not doing it now, and we will see."

01:50:58   That's kind of how it read to me. It didn't seem like an outright, like, "No, we're not going to do that" kind of thing.

01:51:05   It just kind of seemed like, "We don't want to be pressured into doing that right now, right this second."

01:51:09   That's kind of what it sounded like.

01:51:10   And I feel like Lucid making that move, mostly because they're the most desperate, I imagine, but Lucid making that move is also kind of like, you know, Rivian's kind of looking around, right?

01:51:18   Tesla, again, just ignore Tesla because it's run by a maniac, right?

01:51:22   They don't apply logic to what they're going to do.

01:51:24   But Rivian is definitely looking at Lucid and going, "Hmm."

01:51:28   I don't know. I mean, they're so underwater in terms of, like, they're trying to make a new, cheaper platform, they're trying to build the cars that they're trying to sell.

01:51:34   And that, like, Rivian is a million things going on at once, right? So I don't blame them for deep, you know, "We'll worry about CarPlay if we're still in business next year."

01:51:44   Like, "Give Rivian some runway here."

01:51:46   But I feel like in the current climate, despite what GM is doing, Rivian is in the position now where if they rolled out Android Auto and CarPlay, the people who already own them would be very happy.

01:52:01   And the people who haven't yet decided to buy them, this would be in the plus column for them right now.

01:52:06   Yeah, I feel like with Rivian, it's felt more like, you know, we just haven't gotten to it yet.

01:52:13   And we don't have a good answer for that yet, so we're just going to, you know, kind of punt in this weird, vague way.

01:52:18   But it kind of felt like, because look, I mean, it's not, look, we know the actual implementation of supporting CarPlay and Android Auto is, for the most part, pretty straightforward.

01:52:29   Because the phone's just sending you a video stream. You are literally just showing a video stream.

01:52:34   But you have to find a place within the UI that you made where that goes, and that's the tricky part.

01:52:38   Right. You basically, you make a window and you say, "Here, you're going to have this, you're going to have control over this window."

01:52:43   That's how everyone else has done it, and it works fine.

01:52:45   But you have to sort of bend your UI around that, though. You have to say, "Okay, well, when that goes there, what controls from our stuff? Does it hide? Do we have a little sidebar that we show that's always visible with our car stuff? How do you navigate between them?"

01:52:55   I'm not saying it's difficult.

01:52:56   Yeah, that's what everyone does. It's fine.

01:52:58   I know. I'm not saying it's hard. I'm just saying it does take some thought to do.

01:53:01   So if Rivian was planning to do this, it's going to take a little bit of effort, especially since they're probably in the middle of whatever the next major revision of their own software is.

01:53:10   You have to really incorporate that into the design to have it work there.

01:53:14   So even if they're currently planning to do it, I wouldn't expect it for a year.

01:53:18   Oh, yeah, at least a year. Because obviously they're still in pretty early days with just getting stuff out the door, getting stuff shipped, getting stuff built, getting stuff sold and working.

01:53:28   Obviously they have a lot more on their plate, and that's why I kind of felt like that's a 2.0 or 3.0 feature, and they're just not there yet.

01:53:36   But it would not surprise me if they add that sometime, and it's like, "Okay, now we support it. That's it."

01:53:39   No big fanfare. Just boom, now it's there.

01:53:42   At some random time in the future, no warning, just, "Oh, there it is." Because it doesn't seem like it's a principled stand to not do it.

01:53:49   Whereas with Teslitz, instead of giving you the one feature you actually want of showing this window with CarPlay in it that we have plenty of space for on our screen,

01:53:59   instead of giving you that one feature, we're going to build 17 games that you will never play, and this fart simulator, and whatever else you really don't need in your car.

01:54:08   And the one thing you need in your car we're not going to do because we're run by a child.

01:54:11   Thanks to our sponsors this week, Memberful, Collide, and Porkbun.

01:54:16   And thanks to our members who support us directly. You can join us at ATP.fm/join, and we will talk to you next week.

01:54:24   Now the show is over, they didn't even mean to begin, 'cause it was accidental. Oh, it was accidental.

01:54:37   John didn't do any research, Marco and Casey wouldn't let him, 'cause it was accidental. Oh, it was accidental.

01:54:47   And you can find the show notes at ATP.fm, and if you're into Twitter, you can follow them at C-A-S-E-Y-L-I-S-S, so that's Casey Liss M-A-R-C-O-A-R-M,

01:55:06   N-T-M-A-R-C-O-A-R-M-N-S-I-R-A-C-U-S-A-C-R-A-C-U-S-A, it's accidental. They didn't mean to, accidental. Tech podcast so long.

01:55:26   Oh my god, this ultra-fine is driving me nuts, I'm so close, like, if there was a Pro Display XDR in stock in the Westchester Apple Store today, I might have bought it, like, this thing, ugh.

01:55:37   Why don't you get a studio display? Right, exactly, why wouldn't you just get another studio display? I mean, not another, I'm sorry, a studio display, right, right, right.

01:55:44   No, I really don't, I really don't want one. I mean, I guess... It's not that much more expensive than the LG was.

01:55:51   If I spend $2,000 on a studio display, that is $2,000 for something I'm not that into. If I spend $5,000 on a Pro Display XDR, I hate doing that, but the result is something that I really enjoy. Like, I love the Pro Display XDR.

01:56:11   Well, you gotta hold strong on that one though, because, you know, any day could be Mac Pro Day, and if they're gonna revise that display, now would be the time to do it, so you just gotta hold out for, I think, another day.

01:56:20   Yeah, that's kinda what I'm waiting for. I figure there is probably a revision coming sometime soon.

01:56:25   I'm not entirely confident that there's a revision, I'm just saying you gotta wait to see. We're close enough now to something happening. And that something may, you know, they promised Mac Pro, they think there's gonna be a Mac Pro, will there be a new XDR? I don't know, I gave it like 50/50, but you gotta at least wait to see.

01:56:40   'Cause if they roll out the new Mac Pro and there's not an XDR, then you're safe, just buy one probably.

01:56:44   Hold on though, I mean, to each their own, I'm not trying to say you're wrong, but you're wrong. You really think that the XDR is, what is it, it's $6,000 with a stand, is that right? You really think it's $4,500 better than the Studio Display?

01:57:03   No, definitely not. But here's the difference. My option is, I can just keep using the Ultrafine, which is, I'm currently doing that. Keep using the Ultrafine when I'm in this location and just suck it up. That's free. I spent this money in 2016. So it's free, no additional money here.

01:57:21   So I can do this for free, or I can spend $2,000 to get the exact same size monitor, which I now feel is too small 'cause I'm used to the XDR, so I can get $2,000 for a nicer version of this too small monitor, or I can just use this for free.

01:57:39   Or I can spend more down the road at some point and get something I actually really like. I really like the XDR. Everything I've heard from the Studio Display kind of sounds like, eh, it's good, comma, but...

01:57:53   I don't know, I wouldn't say that. Early...

01:57:55   It's better than the LG.

01:57:57   It is better than the LG, but is it $2,000 better than the LG? 'Cause the LG's sitting here for free right now.

01:58:01   Uh, see, you don't need it for speakers, and certainly the camera's garbage, but actually, early on it was a little rough. Like, I had some audio playback issues, I was rebooting it from time to time.

01:58:14   Yeah, I've had zero problems with the XDR. Never, not even a single problem.

01:58:19   No, no, I understand that. I understand that, but now I can't recall leaving aside the garbage camera, which the XDR doesn't even have one anyway.

01:58:26   I haven't really had any problems with the Studio Display, and I gotta tell you, you know, another thing worth considering, although I think ultimately you're right, but I really, really like having my 2-up 5K setup, 'cause I have my Ultra-Meh on the right-hand side, and I have the Studio Display directly in front of me.

01:58:45   My speakers are too big for that.

01:58:47   Well, that's fair.

01:58:49   You've got a wider desk.

01:58:51   Or why not just VZ amount the damn Ultra-Meh? That would fix the stand problems.

01:58:57   Yeah, that would fix some of its shortcomings.

01:58:59   That's the thing, it's like, I don't, every time I have, I wouldn't say chickened out, but like, every time I've like over-compromised on something for logic, instead of like following my feeling on something, I have almost always regretted it afterwards.

01:59:14   And I don't want to spend $2,000 on something that I will regret afterwards. I would rather either spend nothing and keep the crap I have now for free, or spend more on the thing I actually want.

01:59:25   Again, like, throughout life, I have done the compromise thing many times, and every single time I regret it.

01:59:33   Damn it, why didn't I either wait until I could afford the bigger one, or the better one or whatever, or just stick with what I had?

01:59:40   Like, that's so many times I've had that dilemma and made the wrong decision. I can identify it, and I see now, it's like, okay, the studio display, it's nice.

01:59:49   But it's not nicer enough than the LG to be worth replacing the LG for my purposes right at the second.

01:59:55   If I was using it every day, maybe it would be different, but right now it's fine.

01:59:59   And then the XDR is really nice.

02:00:02   And I love that it's not an iOS computer in there that occasionally has weird bugs and has to be rebooted.

02:00:09   Which again, isn't really a thing anymore. Like, it literally is a thing.

02:00:13   I have bad news for Marco. If there's an XDR revision, you know it's come with a stupid A13 inside it.

02:00:18   I know.

02:00:20   I'm also glad that I got in before they started adding A series chips to the thing or whatever.

02:00:26   My guess is a revised XDR will be created in the image of the studio display, just because, assuming they're happy with that experience.

02:00:35   I have crossed my fingers, I have not had any problems with my studio display, but I know a lot of people have.

02:00:40   I don't know, it would be interesting to hear from inside Apple, like, how is the studio display viewed?

02:00:46   They decided they were going to make a studio display with smarts, and they had a bunch.

02:00:51   We already have an OS and a chip and everything, like, we have that.

02:00:55   It's called the A series chips, it's called iOS.

02:00:58   We already embedded in lots of little things.

02:01:01   It's inside our HomePod, inside our Apple TV. Why do we have to make a custom chip and put it in our model?

02:01:06   Let's use the A series. We talked about this before.

02:01:08   So now they did that, and from our perspective as consumers, it's had its ups and its downs.

02:01:12   How does Apple think it has gone? Do they think, this is a great model, we're going to use this for all our future displays?

02:01:17   Or do they think, hmm, let's regroup. Was this the right decision?

02:01:21   Did we do the right thing here? Or do we regret this?

02:01:25   So we think that the XDR type approach is better, where it's just a bunch of, you know, whatever.

02:01:31   Custom chips in there just for monitor stuff, but compared to the studio display, the XDR is a quote unquote dumb monitor.

02:01:38   Not really, because obviously it's got a USB hub and some Thunderbolt thing and all sorts.

02:01:43   There's stuff in there, no chips in there, but it's not, hey, this thing runs iOS and needs to be rebooted and have firmware updates.

02:01:50   Although the XDR did have firmware updates, I believe, it's just not like with a progress bar in iOS, a new version of iOS being installed.

02:01:57   I just looked at the article from the Verge, the bling in the show notes, with the upcoming Samsung and Dell big monitors.

02:02:06   Remember when those were announced? I think it's CES.

02:02:08   Yeah, we talked about those, the hideous looking Dell thing.

02:02:11   Oh my god, I just, yeah, I just scrolled down and saw the Dell again for the first time since, I guess, January.

02:02:15   Oh my god, that thing is hideous. Oh wow. That, I don't care how much that costs, I'd rather have the XDR.

02:02:22   It reminds me of like the TV review things I watch.

02:02:25   One of the channels I watch has this thing where they do, like they invite all the reviewers in to do a blind judging of all the televisions at the end of the year.

02:02:34   And the way they make it blind is they have like this elaborate, you know, like stuff like taped, you know, you can only see the light up portion of the screen, so they try to hide the rest of it so you can't see any other portion of it.

02:02:43   You couldn't do that with the Dell, because it was like the lumpen stupid camera thing could be bulging through, you'd be like, you'd be able to tell, that's the Dell, I can tell without even the screen being turned on.

02:02:52   There's no way you can hide it, like the only reason the blind test works for TVs is they're all so uniform now, it's so easy to hide the bezels and hide everything else in it, but the Dell is like, no, you cannot hide this ugly.

02:03:02   Oh god, like at least the Samsung 5K one that they're doing, at least they ripped off the studio display like pretty closely.

02:03:09   Yeah, that's Samsung for you.

02:03:11   Yeah, exactly, it's like if you don't have good design chops, at least rip off someone else's good design. Dell is like, nope, we're great at this, we're going to do our own thing, and then that comes out.

02:03:20   But hey, the feature set on the Dell is something else. We talked about it before.

02:03:24   It is, I mean look, I don't think we have a price for that yet, do we? But man, if that thing ever comes out, if that's at all price competitive, it is going to be a pretty big deal, but oh god, it's not a looker.

02:03:42   [BEEPING]