» Mucous Powers Activate!

This week’s episode of America’s most thought-about-in-a-weird-sexual-way dadcast looks at school sickness, smartphones and the Swedish bikini team.

» ‘Amazon Fire Phone sales: Estimate says 35,000 at most’

(Link via One Foot Tsunami.)



That might sound bad, but you really need to look at this leaked Amazon chart of units of Fire Phones sold that I acquired before you pass judgement.

Screen Shot 2014-10-01 at 9.55.18 PM

See? Now it doesn’t look so bad.

» Windows 10 features two modes

The Verge’s Dan Seifert on Microsoft’s preview of Windows 10:

Users will be prompted to switch between the touch and non-touch modes whenever they connect or disconnect the keyboard, and the Start screen and apps will adjust themselves accordingly.

Me, in April of 2013:

I don’t understand this need to have one device that “does everything” (crappily), but if you’re going to do that it seems it needs to operate in two different visually distinct modes: touch and desktop. The user either needs to switch modes or the device needs to detect which mode it’s being used in.

I’m not patting myself on the back. I’m chastising Microsoft for not figuring out sooner something even I figured out.

» Using Mac OS 9

Ars Technica’s Andrew Cunningham tried to use OS 9 for a few days. As my house is still littered with old machines, I’m a sucker for these pieces and had long considered writing the same piece. I still have a Titanium PowerBook like the one he picked and it’s really not a bad machine under OS X. The lack of a modern browser completely hampers using OS 9, though.

» Post-it Plus

It’s often pretty hard for these legacy products to adjust to the digital world. In this case 3M actually came up with an app that extends the use of their physical product. Post-its are still useful for brainstorming sessions. Now there’s a digital way to organize them.

(Via Ben Brooks)

» ‘Many eyes’ miss another

The New York Times reports on “Shellshock”, the bug found in Bash after…

How long was it again?

Oh, right. 22 years.

Contacted Thursday, Jim Zemlin, the executive director of the Linux Foundation, said the initiative was contacting Mr. Ramey to see how it could help.

“I don’t think this is an open-source problem,” Mr. Zemlin said. “Software is eating the world. The bad news is software is hard and complex.”

That’s true. I also don’t think it’s just an open-source problem. But how many times do we have to find serious bugs in open-source software dating back years before the “many eyes” theory is finally disproved as an advantage?


» State Secrets

On the second episode of The Rebound, Dan and I talk about our new phones while Lex just sits there looking pretty. Then we talk iOS 8 keyboards and even get into Bendghazi before Bendghazi was sweeping the nation.

My iPhone 6 review

Here are the things I think about the iPhone 6 after four whole days of using it, divided into Likes and Dislikes.


  • The screen is bigger. I don’t know if you noticed that. Some games I like are more fun to play because I don’t have to squint at them. There is more room for stuff on the home page, even if I can’t reach it all. Apps that haven’t been updated yet are easier to read because the type is so big. When they get updated, I will either have to go to zoom mode or go back to squinting. I am a thousand years old.
  • It’s extremely well built, particularly for the first of its form factor. The curved edge feels really nice. I thought the straight edge of the 5s was really nice, but now I don’t know what I was thinking. Who was I back then? I don’t even know that person anymore. I keep my iPhone in the same pocket as my car keys, currently with no case, and so far it’s showed not one sign of wear.
  • It’s thin. Delightfully so.
  • I got the 64 GB model and can now fill it with more crap, much of which I’ll never look at. I’m very happy about that. I have a friend with a 32 GB 5s and he’s a total loser now.
  • It has new things. Like the thing you can use to buy more things with. I haven’t used that thing yet, but I’m looking forward to using it someday. I think maybe it has some other things, too.
  • I have not noticed better battery life, but considering the fact that I’m using it pretty much non-stop because BIG PHONE! BIG PHONE! I think it’s doing pretty well.


  • Because it’s larger, I feel like I don’t have as good a grip on it. Also, I still try to reach the top right corner with my thumb by holding the phone without supporting it on the bottom with my pinky. I feel like I’m far more likely to drop this phone because of that. And dropping an iPhone 6 is a major embarrassment, the likes of which gets reported around the globe. I don’t need that. No, sir, I do not.
  • It’s nice that Reachability is there, but the double touch works maybe 80-90 percent of the time for me on the first try. That might sound good, but it means that when I want to reach that app up there, I’m either doing a thing I didn’t have to do with my 5s or I’m doing it twice. Or I’m holding the phone really precariously. Or I’m using my other hand. I’m not happy with any of those solutions but this is the big-phone dystopian future I live in.
  • I worry about the camera lens. I know it’s covered in space-age sapphire (?) which I believe is an indestructible material like adamantium or vibranium or a third made-up material. But it sticks out. It seems like a better thing would be for it to be sticking in, not out. Physics says this is impossible. This quandary keeps me up at night. I pace, sleepless for hours, arguing with physics in my mind. “Isn’t there anything you can do?” I ask physics. Physics says it will have to talk to its manager. It disappears into the back room. I hear voices. Physics returns, shaking its head. It says the best it can do is have the camera lens just stick out “a little”. I close my eyes and when I open them again, physics is gone. Somewhere a dog barks. Then the rain begins to fall. I am inconsolable.

I hope Apple updates the 4-inch form factor next year because much of what made me buy this phone is stuff not related to its bigness. Although, I’m not sure I’d go back. I’m not sure if the 4-inch form factor would have me back now.

Overall, the iPhone 6 is a very nice big phone. I did not particularly want a big phone, but now everything is big phones. You people did this, not me.

» Stay Off-Property

On this week’s Turning This Car Around, we talk about theme park vacations. Some tips and tricks are recounted.

» The Tao of Apple rumors

I’m back on the pages of Macworld talking about Apple possibly buying Path and/or Square, and a shocking revelation about the Apple Watch.