MBW 698: Fisher-Price Quality

Beep boop - this is a robot. A new show has been posted to TWiT…

What are your thoughts about today’s show? We’d love to hear from you!

I think that Andy is so right-on (~01:08:00) about Apple being emotionally hung-up on what they must disallow computing to become, any care to avoid hamstringing users along the way be damned. I find utterly shameful and indefensible their reluctance to ensure that user empowerment is not diminished but instead only grows. They allowed developers to gate-keep our access to our own files until the Files app! They still won’t let us choose a default app for file types. If they’re so concerned over elderly users in their families haranguing them about multitasking, put in a setting to disable it just like there’s one for disabling animations. It’s that simple. Hell, ship it as the default!

Andy does a good job articulating why a rationale against nerfing the iPad makes sense regardless of cost, but for those of us for whom cost is an insurmountable barrier to Leo’s lovely garden of every device has its use and every use has its device, the iPad represents the opportunity to benefit from Apple’s platform at a fraction of the price without breathing through a smart-phone form-factor’s straw. It should be incumbent upon Apple, no less now than ever, to abide by their ethos of personal computing, of user empowerment, of accessible complexity, a computer—not merely a computing appliance—for the rest of us. Ensuring I can’t do things with such capable hardware purely for software reasons is anathema to me and I think they should be ashamed of themselves for allowing that to hobble their products and letting the user capability chips fall where they may.

Alex still hasn’t tried Pencil, apparently :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye: It’s supposed to solve the fat-finger/precision-input/mouse problem. I absolutely love my Smart Keyboard, the original, origami one for the 10.5" Pro. I don’t have a Pencil yet, myself, but I’m curious if he’d still find the combination of the 3 frustrating or inadequate for even his industrial-grade editing complexities.

Leo nailed it about audio: it’s compression of dynamics at the mastering level that ruins music worse than the difference between an already very high sample and an ultra-high sampling rate; having said that, I’m one of those people who can tell higher sample rates and hate the dismissal of the difference :smiley: For me, iTunes should be lossless and full dynamics that are not aimed for earbuds, at least as a higher-cost option. These days, tracks that are mastered for iTunes are the least dynamic of any format, whereas streaming services like Spotify receive far more dynamic versions because Spotify will automatically adjust volume to prevent one track from sounding softer than another. The reason the “digital loudness wars” ruined music was because of terrestrial radio never bothering to adjust volume to equalize one track to the next and therefore incentivizing the promoters to pressure the mastering engineers for something that would jump out of the speakers and bash listeners in the face with every single last beat to get their attention and seem more impactful and lodge into the memory better than competing artists’ tracks.

Radio stations were also guilty of applying compression and boosting long before digital, in an effort to get their output to sound more impressive than their competitors’ on the tonally and dynamically limited car radios of the 1970s and 80s. The result frequently sounded terrible on decent audio equipment.