June 8, 2015


Mac Roundtable 2015-06-08 #227 WWDC

Filed under: Podcast — podfeet @ 9:26 pm


Bart Busschots: Let’s Talk Apple lets-talk.ie @bbusschots
Allison Sheridan: NosillaCast Mac Podcast podfeet.com @podfeet
Victor Cajaio: Artechulate artechulate.info/ @victorcajiao
John F. Braun: Mac Geek Gab macgeekgab.com @johnfbraun

In this episode we discuss our impressions of the Apple World Wide Developer Conference (WWDC) including:

  • OS X 10.11 El Capitan
  • iOS 9
  • Apple Pay
  • HomeKit
  • Swift programming language
  • watchOS 2
  • Apple Music


  1. If ATMs are holding the USA back on implementing chip & PIN, then perhaps the cart is before the horse. If you have chip and PIN cards and payment terminals (we keep hearing about the millions of places they are appearing) then why are ATMs important?

    Maybe I’m missing another hole in the US system, but here in New Zealand I can use a chip & PIN card to pay for pretty much anything. In many cases with a credit card and otherwise with a debit card (which in some cases are the same physical card). I honestly cannot remember anywhere cash was required apart from paying for a train fare while onboard the train. That should go away soon with the introduction of a system like the UK’s OysterCard (we already have it on buses). Other than that, anything from a car (deposit) to a candy bar can be bought “on the plastic”. Again, I can’t remember the last time I used an ATM. Not to say people here don’t, but if I don’t need to for years on end then they’re not really required except for people who are hanging on to the old ways.

    Comment by Allister Jenks — June 9, 2015 @ 12:46 am

  2. RE Bart’s rant that the keynote doesn’t “tell a story” – this is a developers’ conference, and I would argue that the whole “set it up/tell a story” bit doesn’t really belong in it. You’re talking to developers, who presumably know what the heck is going on. In other words they’re preaching to the choir. For a consumer-focused event, I agree, you have to tell the “this is what we have now, this is why it sucks, and this is how we’re gonna make it better” thing. But for developers, not so much. At least IMHO.

    The skit in the beginning was kinda funny, and I really don’t think it approached Samsung levels of ridiculousness. I agree that it was a bit too long though. Maybe 5-10 minutes tops.

    I’m pretty sure I saw an example of Siri doing a two-stage query. They might not have pointed it out explicitly, but I seem to recall something like it. I’ll have to rewatch the keynote to be sure.

    Re John Braun’s concern about OpenGL and metal – OpenGL and Metal are not mutually exclusive. You can still write openGL apps for iOS, and I expect the same will be true on Mac.

    I actually meditate when I wake up. OK, maybe not the exact textbook definition of “meditation,” but often when I wake up, I sort of sit there and reflect inwardly, maybe put on some music, etc., to sort of ease myself into an awake state, rather than just “boom, you’re awake!”

    The last time I remember a female executive on stage at an Apple presentation was back in the days when Microsoft Office for the Mac was a new thing. Roz Ho, the (then) head honcho at Microsoft’s MacBU (Mac Business Unit) always came out to demonstrate whatever the latest version of Office was at the time.

    Re Chip and Pin – There is a US federal mandate that after this coming October (October 2015) all businesses must support Chip and PIN. Naturally, being corporate entities, they’ll wait until the very last moment before they upgrade (remember, there is a LOT of infrastructure (i.e. expensive credit card terminal machines) to replace. And, even so, it’s not a strictly enforceable mandate, in other words jackbooted thugs aren’t going to bust down the door of your business if you haven’t upgraded by then. After the cutoff date, the catch is, you can still operate a non-chip-and-PIN terminal, but if you continue to do so, then YOU are liable for any fraudulent charges — if you did upgrade to Chip and Pin, then the BANK would be liable.

    RE transit – I’m not surprised that the availability is limited. The mass transit system (at least here in the US) is HORRIBLY fragmented – even worse than Android. Each transport system in each city is basically its own little fiefdom, and they control their routing data with an iron fist. So Apple basically has to go around to every transit company in every city who’s willing to listen to them and basically beg them to please let them have access to their routing data. Google has a big head start on this, since they’ve been doing public transit in Maps for years and years now. But there are places where even Google has failed to do the negotiation, and there just isn’t any public transit data for.

    Re News app – remember they have to negotiate with all of the content providers, and those negotiations can be extremely byzantine at times. For example, News Corp. (Rupert Murdoch’s gig) has properties all over the world. But you can’t just go to News Corp and say “I want access to all of your stuff” – you have to say “I want access to your US stuff. OK now I want access to your UK stuff. Still with me? OK now I wan Australia”, etc. Just like the music industry, you can’t just go to a multinational company and license their stuff worldwide. You have to license each individual property in each individual country. Like I said, totally byzantine. (no wonder the print media is dying) I imagine these negotiations are continually taking place, so they’ll probably be adding more as the negotiations fall into place.

    I do agree that the music portion of the keynote was oddly misplaced. This really doesn’t have a place in a developers’ conference. Really they should have made a special “Music Event” like they did in the past. I guess because the music service is coming out really soon (June 30 if memory calls) they felt like they had to announce it now… but if they could have just delayed it till September, then they could have made an entire “Music Event” out of it. I really gotta wonder if they stuck it in there just because the entire blogosphere/newsosphere has been bitching and moaning for months now about “OOOH APPLE”S GONNA DO SOME SORT OF MUSIC THING!!” If this is the case, then I think this sets a bad precedent, showing that Apple is being reactionary (i.e. “everyone’s bitching and moaning about the music service? Guess we better trot it out in front of the audience after all…”)

    Comment by Donald Burr — June 9, 2015 @ 1:21 am

  3. (Listening further) the News app will absolutely allow you to sign up as a provider with no more than an RSS feed. However you are not eligible for iAd revenue unless you use the full Apple News Format.

    Comment by Allister Jenks — June 9, 2015 @ 2:22 am

  4. But wait, there’s more. The iPad multi-tasking encompasses three capabilities. Slide-over, picture in picture and true side-by-side multitasking. ONLY the latter one is limited to the iPad Air 2. I have personally used the slide-over on my iPad Mini 2.

    Comment by Allister Jenks — June 9, 2015 @ 2:27 am

  5. And more. The power save mode does things like turning off animation and dynamic wallpaper. I suspect many people have these off anyway, so you won’t get the full 3 hours of extra time.

    Comment by Allister Jenks — June 9, 2015 @ 2:37 am

  6. And by the way, Allison was wrong, that WWDC intro comedy bit didn’t go for 12 minutes, it only lasted 00:04:39, which is not too long IMHO. This is actually roughly the same length as the various other videos that they’ve played at the beginning of several other recent keynotes. It may have *seemed* longer to Allison because the keynote didn’t actually start at 10 AM on the dot, it started a few minutes late.

    Comment by Donald Burr — June 9, 2015 @ 4:48 am

  7. Hey Siri, will it rain in Auckland tomorrow?
    “There’s no rain in the forecast for Auckland tomorrow.”
    What about Wellington?
    “It sure looks like it is going to rain tomorrow in Wellington.”
    How do I get there?
    “Getting directions to 109 Ghuznee Street, Te Aro”

    So yes, Siri can string together *some* queries. I don’t know why it chose that address, but it is pretty central.

    Hey Siri, what is 9.2 inches in yards?
    “The answer is 0.26 yards.”
    And what about millimetres?
    “That would be 233.68 millimetres”
    And feet?
    “It’s 0.77 feet”
    Is that longer than a mile?
    “Here’s what I found on the web…”

    Comment by Allister Jenks — June 9, 2015 @ 5:22 am

  8. How did we miss that they announced 3rd party editing extensions in Photos??? Maybe it wasn’t in the keynote, but later in the day? See Serenity Caldwell’s 12 features that excited her about El Capitan.


    Comment by Allison Sheridan — June 9, 2015 @ 9:39 am

  9. The Photos extensions was in there, but only just. Blink for a second (or, perhaps, be distracted by a chat room) and you’d miss it.

    Comment by Allister Jenks — June 9, 2015 @ 2:49 pm

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