“The Last Mile for the iPad”

We’ve got our analogies all wrong.

Gabe Weatherhead posted an article about where the iPad fits, how it works, and such. In short, I think his underlying premise is off base. There’s a terrible analogy which keeps being trotted out, stated by Weatherhead too, where the Mac is a truck and the iPad is a car, etc etc etc. It’s a Steve Jobs quote, and thus is attributed far more truth than it really should be.

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  • The Very Best Things

    Three of the very best things I have ever done a deep dive on.

    I’ve long had a page I labeled as “The Best” where I list items which I’ve come to feel are the best for their categories. I wanted to point out a few of the very best things I have found for those who are not members. These are not full reviews, but rather the core of why I feel these items are the very best.

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  • iPad Productivity Report — 6/19/17

    I look at the newest iPad Pro, Affinity Photo, and multitasking in iOS 11.

    It’s been almost a week with the 10.5” iPad Pro, so let’s talk about how amazing that is. Then a couple more things: Affinity Photo, and iOS 11 multi-tasking.

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  • Anker PowerCore+ Mini

    A lot of power, not very big, fits in my pocket.

    One problem I often run into when I head out to WWDC is power for my iPhone. Since it’s what I am using to communicate all day long over LTE, take photos, and more — the battery dies fast. I am never sure how my days are going to play out, so I always like to make sure I have some means of topping off my iPhone battery while out and about.

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  • The iPad

    This is a critical point for iPad, where we are about to turn the corner in a very big way.

    It’s little surprise to hear me talk on and on about how great the iPad is. It’s little surprise to my coworkers to hear me talk about it either, but in a normal day, when I interact with humans, I actively avoid talking about this. I avoid this because people in general are hostile towards the idea, and there are many other things I would rather be doing than argue with people where they can argue right back. Especially, when I watch them use an iPhone as their primary computer, despite not wanting to admit it or entertain the notion that this means the iPad too could be a good primary computer for them.

    Typically, I save these posts for members, but I want to share this with you because there’s an important shift to note, a shift which is going to take place over the next few years on a larger scale, and more immediately this fall.

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  • iPad Productivity Report — 6/12/17

    The 10.5” iPad Pro keyboard is awesome, and some iOS 11 notes for iPad users.

    From now, and until the fall, this report is going to be formatted into two sections: the normal productivity report you’ve come to expect, as well as a second section with iOS 11 (beta) specific thoughts. This way, if you don’t care to hear about something you can’t have your hands on right away, you can gloss over that section.

    This week, I have a few notes about iOS 11, and a lot of thoughts about one of the biggest productivity features coming for iPad-only users: the 10.5” iPad Pro. Let’s dive in…

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  • iPad Productivity Report — 6/6/17

    What a good time to be an iPad Pro user. What a great time to prepare to be an iPad Pro user.

    What a great couple of days. If you watched, or read, about the announcements from Apple yesterday then one thing was made very clear, as I said last week: they’ve figured out the iPad. I’ve not read any reaction posts from the general “press at large” but judging from private messages I am getting, as well as the overall tone of the headlines: this is day one of the iPad being generally accepted as a “real computer” by the masses.

    You can insert whatever emoji the kids use for a really smug smiling blogger, here.

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  • A Quick WWDC Tip: Compeed

    Best WWDC tip I can give you.

    Last year I wore what I thought was a well broken in pair of Clark’s Desert Boots to WWDC and found out they still had some break in to them. I started to get a couple hotspots and ducked into Walgreens to find some relief. That’s when I discovered Compeed Blister Cushions.

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  • County Comm Goods

    A few quick thoughts on a bunch of smaller items.

    I’ve been able to pick up a few of the County Comm items lately, so I thought it might be beneficial to go over some of them as this company really has some gems hidden away.

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  • iPad Productivity Report — 5/29/17

    What the Surface Pro updates mean for iPad Pro users, and little excitement about WWDC.

    This week I want to talk about the Surface Pro and how it plays into the evolving transitional period we are in with computing — the move from “traditional” computer like MacBooks and iMacs, to things like Surface Pros and iPad Pros. (Realistically, many might even suffice with only an iPhone, and an argument could be made that most people almost do this already without giving it much thought. Another post, perhaps.)

    First, let’s look at the new Surface Pro, which has dropped the numerals, and the bundled accessories, and pivoted its own marketing.

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  • Machine Era Brass Pen

    It’s brass, not gold, and it’s really heavy.

    A few weeks back, I snagged a new pen from Massdrop to fit with all the brass things I’ve been adding to my collection. The Machine Era Brass Pen, which takes a Pilot G2 refill and weighs about 20-30lbs.

    I bought this pen to kick around on my desk, and my lovely coworkers refer to it as “Ben’s gold pen” which is charming — SINCE IT IS BRASS FOOLS. Anyways, I love brass for a few reasons: it patinas well, it is durable, and there’s some mystical anti-bacterial shit which goes on. All of which seems like it makes for a pretty great pen to have kicking around my desk.

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  • An Interview with Manton Reece

    From Twitter alternatives, open web, blogging, to bags and iPads.

    (The following interview took place over Slack DMs on 5/22/17. Light editing for clarity and spelling was done, mostly on my side.)

    Ben: Manton, thanks for taking the time today to chat. Before we get going, could you give me a little bio on who you are — for those two readers who aren’t aware of you just yet?

    Manton: Sure, I’m a long-time Mac developer — from the 1990s when Apple was doomed — but these days I mostly do iOS and web development. A couple years ago I quit my regular job to work on my indie software company Riverfold Software full time, where I’ve shipped a few Mac and iOS apps, as well as web services like the Tweet Marker API. My latest project is Micro.blog.

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  • The Arcido Faroe

    Wait, this one is within reach of everyone’s budget and it’s really quite good.

    Editor’s note: Arcido provided me with this bag at no charge the purposes of this review.

    Some time ago I was contact by Arcido, I have reviewed a travel bag of theirs previously and left it with rather mixed feelings. A good bag? Yes. A great bag? Not for most people. I don’t have that bag anymore, but my recollection of it is threefold: it was heavy, it was large, and the material was awesome.

    I remember wishing it was lighter, and it was smaller. So Arcido reached out to me and asked me to check out their new bag, the Faroe. They told me they listened to what people were saying, and created this bag with much of that feedback in mind.

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  • iPad Productivity Report — 5/22/17

    Let’s talk about task management apps, and the awesomeness of Things 3.

    This week I want to talk about task management apps — something I used to cover in depth at the outset of this site, but which has only been of passing interest to me of late. What is spurring this is Things 3 (iPad, iPhone, Mac), which is made by a company I loathe, but I mostly certainly bought and am using.1 I can’t and won’t speak to the long term impacts of this tool, as it simply has not been enough time — but there is one thing we can talk about: design.

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    1. It’s a complicated relationship. 

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  • iOS 11: iPad Wishes and Oh God Please No, Not That

    Taking a look at the bigger points in the iOS 11 concept video from MacStories.

    I’ve been mulling over Federico’s excellently well made iOS 11 concept video, and I wanted to reflect on some thoughts from a few of his larger ideas.

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  • A Fresh New Look

    A few notes on my new design, look at that archive page for sure.

    Yesterday afternoon, I pushed live a new theme for the site which I had been working on for the past few months. Most of the design elements were realized over the course of just a week or so, but I always sit with a new design for a few months as a way of trying it on. What I want to know is simple: after a few months, which one do I like looking at better?

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