Maccast 2014.04.29 - #486
V Opening
V Opening Music
* Music is Say Anything by Manda and the Marbles
V Sponsor: RageSW
V Everweb
* One of the tools that I know many of you loved for building your own websites was iWeb, but alas Apple left it behind when they moved to iCloud
* Now the folks at Rage SW have developed a solution that I think is the first real iWeb replacement
* Everweb can bring back that iWeb experience in terms of ease of use and functionality, but also goes beyond that.
* Easy drag and drop site creation with great templates to get you started
* Master pages for easy updating of common elements like menus
* Tons of great widgets to add Google Maps, contact forms, social integration with Facebook, Twitter, and Google.
V Brings in modern and advanced feature
* HTML 5 support, including audio and video
* Google Fonts
* Mobile templates for each design.
* They have the option to buy the standalone app and upload via FTP to your own hosting, or get easy one-click publishing with the Everweb with hosting edition.
* Best of all Maccast listeners can get 15% off by using the code at checkout.
V News
V Apple’s Earnings Call
V Profit’s were up almost 7 percent from a year ago with revenues of $45.6 billion and a net profit of $10.2 billion.
* It was actually Apple best non-holiday quarter ever
V Surprisingly the iPhone was the big winner for Apple in the quarter
* Apple sold 43.7 million iPhones
* 16.8 percent increase in sales over the year-ago quarter
* The Mac didn’t do too badly either. It had a 4.7 percent increase in sales over a year ago with Apple selling 4.1 million in the quarter.
V iTunes sales set a quarterly record bringing in $4.7 billion, an 11 percent year-over-year increase.
* The App Store specifically accounted for $2.6 billion, up 9 percent year over year
* The App Store generated 85 percent more revenue than the Google Play Store in the March quarter.
V iPad and iPod sales were both down from last year
* iPad sales dropped 16 percent coming in at just 16.3 million units
* Apple sold 2.7 million iPods down 51 percent year over year.
V Cook tried to put a positive spin on iPad sales saying they actually met with the high end of Apple’s own expectations for the quarter.
* iPad is the fastest growing product in Apple's history. They have sold over 210 million units to date, twice as many units as the iPhone did in the same amount of time.
* He continues to believe that the tablet market will surpass the PC market in size in the next few year
* Among people planning to purchase a tablet within 90 days, two thirds plan to buy an iPad.
* iPad has over 95 percent share of U.S. education market.
* Chitika’s latest US & Canadian web usage numbers show iPad with a 77.2 percent share of tablet web traffic. By comparison Samsung tablet had just 8.3% of web traffic
* Cook said that the Office finally coming to the iPad does help for iPad sales, but noted it would have been better for Microsoft if they had done it sooner.
* Apple also announced it’s increasing it’s share repurchase authorization by $30 billion, increasing the quarterly dividend by 8 percent and issuing a 7-for-1 stock split in June.
* Apple has acquired 24 companies in the last 18 months, but still has cash reserves of $156 billion (just 18 billion of that held in the US).
V The call had a big focus on Apple’s growth and success in International and emerging markets
* International sales grew to 66 percent of revenues
* Pointed out that China Mobile had a significant impact on iPhone Sales
* iPhone sales in Japan were up 50 percent year over year
* iPhone sales grew 61% in Brazil, 97% in Russia, 56% in Turkey, 55% in India, and a 262% in Vietnam
* Strong iPhone 4S sales in many markets bringing new customers into the Apple eco-system
V Other significant notes from the call
* Over two-thirds of people registering an iPad were new to the platform, while over half iPhone users were also new users. This brings a big long term benefit with respect to the halo effect both on the products and services level.
* 85% of iPhone 4S buyers were new to iPhone. 62 of iPhone 4s buyers and 60% of iPhone 5c buyers were switching from Android.
* Apple now has over 800 million registered iTunes accounts, most with credit cards.
* Cook express excitement about what Apple is currently working on and it’s "closer than it’s ever been" (to being announced).
V When asked in the Q&A by Gene Munster why Apple TV is no longer a hobby Cook explained that when a product makes over a billion dollars he figures it’s hard to still call it a "hobby"
* He noted Apple has sold over 20 million Apple TVs so far.
V Are Apple and Nike collaborating?
V Last week we talked about the rumor that Nike had dismissed 70 to 80 percent of it’s Fuelband hardware team
* Nike responded and said they will layoff, "a small number" of the team, but not near the 70-80% reported.
* There might just be confusion on what we are talking about. The total team is 200 with reportedly 70 people in the hardware team (according to CNET). Reportedly 55 people in the hardware team are getting let go. That would be 78% of the hardware team, but just 28% of the entire Fuelband team
* Nike said the "Nike+ FuelBand SE remains an important part of our business." They plan to improve the Nike+ FuelBand App, are launching a version in new colors, and will support the FuelBand in the future.
V But why are we even talking about Nike on an Apple podcast? iWatch
* Tim Cook has mentioned the Nike Fuelband, and he wears one.
* Also said that they don’t see people wearing watches
* Tim is on Nike’s Board of Directors
V Are Apple and Nike partnering on Apple’s new wearable?
* New rumor claims the two companies are co-developing a smartband.
* Apple has partnered with Nike+ on the iPod.
* Since the Nike rumor we have been hearing a lot about this
* I feel pretty strongly that the iWatch will have a BIG health and fitness element
* Hardware and software integration will be tight. We’ve heard rumors of the 'Healthbook' app
V Not in Apple’s DNA to only control one half of a products integration.
* This could work if Apple is simply licensing Nike technology and integrating in it’s own Apps and Hardware.
* Could have the added benefit of letting customer choose to integrate with Nike’s apps
* Could also mean it’s possible Apple’s "iWatch" could integrate with Nike software on other platforms?
V Much more than a "watch"
V Will it be a "band" or "watch" form factor?
* Apple allegedly appears to be using a shell company, "Brightflash" to filed for or requested trademark registration for "iWatch".
* What’s odd about that rumor is that Apple has already applied for several "iWatch" trademarks under its own name in several countries.
* Sensors are the key, and it will likely have a lot of them
* Latest rumors mention gesture control of other devices (PrimeSense?) and NFC (payments)
V Mobile Payments
* I still think that it will not be based on NFC
* This week also had reports (via Re/code) that Apple was hiring senior level people to help negotiate and build an iTunes-backed mobile payments business.
* After the earnings call Cook did a WSJ interview and when asked about mobile payments said, "I think it's a really interesting area". I believe that is now Cook code for "we’ve got something in the works".
* He also pointed out how Apple already has many people using Touch ID to buy stuff in the App Store.
V iOS 7.1.1 & Other Updates
* Further improvements to TouchID recognition.
* Keyboard responsiveness
* Fixes issue with Bluetooth keyboards when voiceover enabled.
* Adrian Kingsley-Hughes at ZDNet seems to think the update brought big battery life improvements?
V Also a 6.1.1 update for 2nd and 3rd gen Apple TV
* No details on what’s in the update, but likely there to keep in time with iOS 7.1.1
* Hints in the 7.1 update of Siri support in Apple TV (why not in the 6.1.1 update?).
* Code hints for Touch ID coming to the iPad (obvious).
V OS X Security Update 2014-002
* Fixes an issue that could cause the search and address field to load a webpage or send a search term before the return key is pressed
* Improves credit card autofill compatibility with websites
* Fixes an issue that could block receipt of push notifications from websites
* Adds a preference to turn off push notification prompts from websites
* Adds support for webpages with generic top-level domains
* Strengthens Safari sandboxing
* Fixes security issues, including several identified in recent security competitions
* Also, includes Safari 7.0.3 update if you had not updated on April 1st.
V Having FaceTime issues on your iOS 6 device? If it can run iOS 7 Apple says you need to upgrade
* Apple put out a tech article about the issue which comes from a bug resulting from an expired device certificate.
* It makes FaceTime unusable on older versions of iOS and the only solution to the problem is to update to the latest version of the operating system.
* Devices capable of running iOS 7 must be upgraded to iOS 7.0.4 or later.
* If your device can’t run 7 then you need to get up to iOS 6.1.6
V Apple also opened up it’s OS X Mavericks Beta Seed Program to all
* Used to need top be in the OS X Developer program
* Need to sign-up on Apple’s site
* Probably not a good idea for most people
V Apple iPhone 5 sleep/wake button replacement program
* Acknowledged an issue on a "small number" of iPhone 5 models where the Sleep/Wake button could fail
* Can go to a special page on Apple’s support site to see if you’re device is effected and get a repair set up.
* You’ll have to take or send your device in, but some Apple Stores will provide a 16GB "loner" phone.
* iMore claims you can also ask for a US$350 trade-in (US $80 more than usual) that you and put toward an upgrade. They say you have to ask though. Don;t forget the iPhone 6 is around the corner.
V Larger, larger iPhone delays
* Commercial Times is reporting that the 5.5 inch iPhone 6 (the larger brother of the expected ~4.7 inch model) is currently facing delays due to yield issues with special battery components.
* Apple want’s the 5.5-inch model to be really thin meaning a 2mm thick battery, but those are normally closer to 3mm.
V Report says as soon as they yield issues are resolved Apple wants to release that version of the device. Saying Q1 of 2015 at this point.
* I think Apple was evaluating different screen sizes and form factors. Looking at multiple suppliers and components, and put together a device based on what deals, components, schedules, yields, and timelines worked for their desired Fall product launch.
* But I don’t believe they ever planned on launching more than one screen size, they developed and tested multiple sizes and landed on the one they could build when then needed it.
* Mac Otakara claimed the iPhone 6 will feature a curved glass display and an all-aluminum rear shell.
* Metal casing that will be 10-20 percent thinner according to KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo
* Weibo claims Apple dumped the optical image stabilization in the camera to keep it flush with the thin specs and opted to go with a larger pixel size for better image quality.
V New Macbook Airs
* Slight update to the 11-inch and 13-inch Macbook Airs
* Updated Intel processors.
* All models now feature a 1.4GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 processor with with Turbo Boost up to 2.70GHz and 4GB of RAM to start.
* All other specs seem to remain the same, but now they all start at $100 less. 11-inch 128GB model priced at US$899.00
* Built-to-order configurations now top out at 1.8GHz dual-core Intel Core i7 with up to 8GB of RAM.
* No sign of the rumored 12-inch MacBook Air with Retina display
V Feedback, commentary, opinions
V Clean out your DYLD without Terminal
V Several people followed up to let me know that the free tool ONYX has an option to clear out the dynamic link editor (dyld) cache.
* My favorite OS X maintenance tool, Cocktail, will also do it. USD $19.00
* A corrupt dynamic link editor cache can be a cause of the Spinning Beach ball of Death (SBoD).
* In my case it was also causing trouble with my transporter software and it was making my Finder restart after a hard shutdown.
V Change the Finder default search location
* We brought up Spotlight searches recently and I mentioned that in the Finder (Command + F) searches always seem to default to 'This Mac'
* You can change it by click the location tab at the top of the search results bar.
V Well Jamie wrote in to tell me there is actually a setting you can adjust to change the default behavior
* Finder > Preferences
* Click on the 'Advanced' tab
V At the bottom you can change the 'When performing a search' setting drop down
* Search this Mac
* Search the current folder
* Use the previous search scope (if you did the folder last it would use the folder, This Mac last, it would be This Mac).
V Airport may have a bleeding heart
* When announcement of the Heartbleed vulnerability came out Apple responded saying that, "iOS and OS X never incorporated the vulnerable software and key Web-based services were not affected."
* Then curiously the released an patch for the 2013 Airport Extreme Basestations that had, "security improvements related to SSL/TLS."
* That is the exact area of the Heartbleed vulnerability.
* Apple has not responded to direct question on if it uses OpenSSL in Airport, but I did some digging.
V Open Airport Utility and go under the 'AirPort Utility' menu.
* Choose 'Acknowledgments…' you get it will open a TextEdit file with all the licensed technologies related to Airport.
* Open SSL is on the list.
* It doesn’t give any details as to which specific Airport’s use it or the versions implemented, but i think we can make a logic guess.
V Apple’s security practices are called into question from time to time
* Kristin Paget, who worked on Apple's security team before leaving for Tesla in early 2014, wrote on her blog about Apple patching multiple WebKit vulnerabilities that were initially fixed in OS X with the release of Safari 7.0.3 on April 1, but not patched in iOS 7 until the 7.1.1 release this week.
* The trouble is that Apple has detailed security release notes that list out all the vulnerabilities, so they exposed Safari in iOS 7 for weeks before they patched it.
V Apple’s bug reporter, 'Radar' had a security flaw that a developer discovered
* Allowed him to get the full contact info of all the developers in Apple’s registered developer program, including free developers.
* He notified Apple and it was quietly patched over the weekend.
* Adobe announced a Flash exploit Monday affecting Flash Player and earlier on the Mac. If you use Flash make sure to update to the latest version from Adobe.c
V Merge PDFs with Preview
* Dan was scanning some documents to PDF and had some paper jams so ended up with multiple files and items out of order.
* He wanted a "free" way to combine, re-order, and merge the PDFs into a single document.
* My first answer would to save yourself a lot of hassle and buy a copy of PDFpen (Maccast sponsor, but I’d say this regardless). It may seem the $60 investment is a bit much to just merge a PDF, but you’ll use it over and over for all kinds of PDF work once you have the app.
V That said, Dan was looking for free and there is a way, albeit a tricky one, to merge PDFs with Preview which comes with every Mac.
V 1) Open the .pdf documents with Preview.
* If you don’t want the source PDF to be updated in place make a copy of it before you open it in Preview
* Make sure you have each document open in a separate Preview window.
* 2) Go to View>Thumbnails so that Thumbnails are displayed.
V 3) Drag the thumbnail from document you want to combine from ON TOP OF the thumbnail of the one you want to combine everything into. Make sure you see the green "+" icon appear before you drop the page.
* If you drop the page and you see a light grey line between that page and the one above it in the thumbnail view you still have two separate files. Drag it up and make sure you drop it ON TOP of the other page.
* 4) Continue combining until they are all in one document. Then you can drag the thumbnails around to put them in the right order.
V 5) Once you have them all together you can save the PDF in preview.
* I always quit Preview and check the final document in Quicklook in the Finder.
* Other options include writing an Automator workflow, there is a 'Combine PDF Pages' action.
V Why we can’t 'cut the cord'
* Or at least why it’s difficult.
V Mike wanted to know what it would take for me to "cut the cord".
* In many ways I already have.
V Can’t get everything on a single device
* HBO for example just announced a deal with Amazon
* Different providers are on different boxes
V Apple keeps adding "channels", but most are all locked into your cable provider
* Not even all providers are supported when you are a subscriber
V Fragmented and exclusive content
V Not all show shows available on a single box or service
* HBO is going exclusive with Amazon Prime.
* Limited time playback for "network" shows.
* Pay to play, but beyond Hulu and HBO Go the choices don’t have broad appeal.
V Can’t get "live"
* Sports are key for this. You can get many sports, but they generally require VERY expensive season passes.
* I’m not sure I get this one personally, but a show stopper for some.
V In the short term I think it benefits Apple in a few ways
V People will turn to paid content on iTunes, like Season Pass. Get the show you want.
* HBO still has the one season block, which is annoying, but people will wait (or steal it)
V People will find other things to do or watch. Path of least resistance. There is a lot of choice and I don;t have to change my screen
* I look for other content
* I rent or buy a Movie on iTunes
* I play a game on my device.
* I can browse the web, watch YouTube or Vimeo, read a book, listen or watch a Podcast.
V Screen Lock to Login Screen
* Randy has multiple user accounts on his Mac and often many members of the family will be logged in and using the Mac at the same time.
V He also has set up the Mac to lock the screen after a period of inactivity for security
* System Preferences > Security & Privacy
* In the General tab you can check on 'Require password' and set the time interval.
* The trouble with this approach is that the Mac will be locked by the account that was last using the Mac. If another person wants to use the Mac then they need to click the 'Switch User' button and then login.
* While not horrible, that is an extra click and we Mac users are all about efficiency.
* So the question is, can you set something up to go straight to the Login screen after a period of inactivity?
V One option could be to auto-log out after a inactivity
* System Preferences > Security & Privacy
* Authenticate with an Admin account and click 'Advanced…'
* Check the 'Log out after' and set the period of inactivity.
* In the past the issue with this method is that all open apps would be shutdown, etc., but now most apps will remember and restore when you log back in.
* Still this is less convenient that a simple fast user switch
V From the Fast User Switching menu there is an option to go to the Login Window…
V Enable Fast User Switching
* System Preferences > Users & Groups
* Click the Lock to makes changes and authenticate
* Click the Login Options
* Check the 'Show fast user switching menu as' option and select the menu type (Full Name, Account Name, Icon)
* You’ll then have an icon in your menubar.
* Click the Fast User Switching option in the menubar and you can choose the Login Window option to go straight to the Login Window.
* This requires that each person do this manually. Not ideal.
V There is a terminal command to activate the Login Screen.
* '/System/Library/CoreServices/Menu\ Extras/ -suspend > /dev/null'
* There used to be a screensaver, called ScriptSaver, that could run AppleScripts when your Mac went to sleep. It hasn’t been updated in two years.
* There is an App called, DssW PowerManager, and it can do all kind of things including triggered scripts on Sleep. It costs USD $49.95, so maybe overkill for this application
* There is the SleepWatcher daemon, but you’ll have to be pretty good with UNIX and shell scripts to get it set up and running
V So I found an app called, "EventScripts" in the Mac App Store. US $3.99
* Can assign Shell and AppleScripts to run on many different events events
* There is a big list on their website, but it includes events for Sleeping. Screen did Sleep, Screen did Wake, Screen password Locked, Screen password unlocked.
* Create the script using the Terminal Command, I did a Shell script.
* Copy the script to the ~/Library/Application Support/net.mousedown.EventScripts folder (sandboxing)
* Make sure it has Execute permissions for the needed accounts.
* You’ll have to set up the app to auto run at startup in all your accounts.
* Also, you’ll need to disable the System Preferences > Security & Privacy require password option.
V Twitter peeps eating your HD space
* Dave Hamilton posted an awesome tip on the TMO site that may allow you to reclaim so HDD space.
V Looks like in Dave’s case he uses the Twitter app on his Mac, formerly Tweetie from Atebits.
* Because of how OS X apps are now Sandbox looks like apps store files and caches in your ~/Library/Containers folder, inside a "namespaced" folder (fancy name for the com.developer.appname folder) and then they have their own "Library" folder.
* This app specific Library folder seems to have the familiar Application Support, Preferences, Application Scripts, etc. folders
* For Twitter in the 'com.twitter.twitter-mac' folder there was a 'Data / Library / Caches / com.atebits.tweetie.profile-images' folder that for Dave had 169,000 images file using up 12.79GB of storage.
* They seem to be a cache of user profile images.
* He deleted the Caches folder restarted the app and it was rebuild, but with less data.
* Dave’s piece was updated to note that the Twitter app has a built-in 'Empty Cache' option in the 'Twitter' menu which clears this cache, but also reset the username autocomplete.
* But looks like many different Apps store all kinds of data in here.
* New location to "clean out" when you install Apps.
V I used DaisyDisk on the '~ / Library / Containers' folder and found an odd 1.1GB video "attachment" in my BusyCal data folder.
* You could also use WhatSize or Grand Perspective (not sure on OS X Mavericks compatibility though)
* I use Tweetbot and my Twitter data there seemed normal.
V Closing
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