Aussie Mac Zone ~ Episode 234

Show 234 – April 23, 2018

Run Sheet ~ Zarn & Michael

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Our Aussie Apple Rambling

Story 1

Apple is replacing the batteries for some 13-inch MacBook Pros

Apple has unveiled a program to replace the batteries of some non-Touch Bar 13-inch MacBook Pros for free. The company says that a “limited number” have had their batteries expand.

9to5Mac spotted the program, which will allow users to get the computer’s battery replaced for certain non-Touch Bar 13-inch MacBook Pro models. Apple notes that a small number of computers manufactured between October 2016 and October 2017 have a faulty component which causes the battery to expand. The page for the program has a field for owners to submit their computer serial number to check its eligibility.

If their computer qualifies, users can bring their MacBook Pro to visit an authorised dealer or a retail store, or can mail it to Apple’s repair centre. Users who have already replaced their battery can contact the company to see about getting a refund. Apple notes that any damage that inhibits the battery’s replacement will need to be repaired first, and that the program doesn’t extend the computer’s standard warranty.

another word of warning, apparently iOS 11.3 update breaks iPhone 8 devices with third party-repaired screens

Apple’s latest iOS 11.3 software update is causing iPhone 8 devices with third-party repaired screens to stop working.

Users who have had a screen repair performed by a third party, rather than with Apple, on their iPhone 8 smartphones found that the iOS 11.3 update stopped the touchscreen from working, reports Motherboard. The update was pushed out on 29 March, introducing Apple’s promised iPhone battery health information, as well as the ability to turn off the slowing down of smartphones related to the battery following the scandal in December.

The screens continue to display the homescreen once updated to iOS 11.3 but cannot be interacted with, effectively rendering the affected iPhone 8 device unusable without warning from Apple.


Story 2

Latest App Store redesign for iOS shows 800% increase in downloads for Featured apps

A new report from Sensor Tower (via TechCrunch) indicates that developers that get featured on the App Store are seeing up to an 800% increase on downloads, specifically with the “App of the Day” or “Game of the Day” spots.

The firm looked at data between September 2017 (launch month for iOS 11) and today.

During this time, median U.S. iPhone downloads for apps that snagged the “Game of the Day” spot increased by 802 percent for the week following the feature, compared to the week prior to being featured.

While not as large, being featured in App Store Stories or in an App List saw an average increase of between 222 and 240 percent in terms of downloads.


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Story 3

Tim Cook Insists Merging Mac and iPad Would Result in Compromises

Apple CEO Tim Cook remains against the idea of merging the Mac and iPad to create one unified hardware and software experience, according to a brief conversation he had at Apple’s education event in Chicago last month. 

“We don’t believe in sort of watering down one for the other,” said Cook, speaking with The Sydney Morning Herald’s Peter Wells. “One of the reasons that both of them are incredible is because we pushed them to do what they do well. And if you begin to merge the two … you begin to make trade offs and compromises.” 

“So maybe the company would be more efficient at the end of the day, but that’s not what it’s about,” he added. “It’s about giving people things that they can then use to help them change the world or express their passion or express their creativity. So this merger thing that some folks are fixated on, I don’t think that’s what users want.” 

Cook reiterated that he generally uses a Mac at work, and uses an iPad at home and for travel, but added “I use everything and I love everything.” 

Apple’s boss also revealed that an Apple IIc, released in 1984, was his first computer. “I first used it for a project, as a senior in engineering school, making an inventory control program or for a rental business that was close by,” said Cook, who majored in industrial engineering at Auburn University.


Story 4

iOS 12 will continue supporting iPhone 5S, WebKit developer reports suggest

References to iOS 12, Apple’s next iteration of its mobile operating system, have surfaced in development testing reports for WebKit, with the appearance strongly suggesting Apple will be bringing the next major iOS release to the iPhone 5s as the oldest supported iPhone model.


Story 5

Original Mac designer Susan Kare to receive prestigious AIGA medal

Susan Kare, a former Apple designer known to many as the “woman who gave the Macintosh a smile,” will later this month receive an American Institute of Graphic Arts medal, an honor bestowed upon visual arts icons including Richard Avedon, Paul Rand, and Charles and Ray Eames.


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Story 6 – Australian based story

Health holds crown as the most breached sector in Australia

The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner has received 63 data breach notifications in first six weeks of the scheme’s operation.

The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) has revealed that it received 63 notifications since Australia’s Notifiable Data Breaches (NDB) scheme came into effect on February 22, 2018.

The Quarterly Statistics Report: January 2018-March 2018 revealed that health service providers accounted for 15 breaches; legal, accounting, and management services suffered 10; finance, including superannuation, reported eight breaches; education suffered six; and charities four.


Story 7 – Australian based story

Australian House committee pushes digital retraining fund for displaced workers

The committee has also recommended a digital grants program for small businesses to take part in the digital economy.

The Australian House of Representatives Standing Committee on Industry, Innovation, Science and Resources has said customer-facing workers in the traditional retail sector will be especially hit with the rise of online shopping in Australia, and has recommended a fund to help retrain displaced workers.

Writing in its Internet Competition Inquiry [PDF] report tabled on Wednesday, the committee said internet-based competition, while disruptive, is more likely to be positive for the Australian economy, with jobs in warehousing, transport, and logistics outnumbering those lost in customer-facing retail roles.

“The experience in the United States, where online shopping is much more established, is that the jobs created by ecommerce comfortably outnumber the jobs lost in the traditional retail sector,” the report said.

Among its dozen recommendations, the committee said the government should create a “digital retraining fund” to boost digital literacy and skills of workers before they are displaced.

“Many Australian workers already have advanced digital skills, or have the means to comfortably support themselves to undertake training. Therefore, the funding should be targeted at Australian workers with relatively low-level digital skills or in occupations at significant risk of being replaced by digital processes,” the report said.

“This includes many Australians currently employed in customer-facing retail roles.”

How to 1




How to 2

This week in Apple History

1985: After selling only 60,000 units over two years, Apple officially discontinues the Lisa computer, the forerunner to the Macintosh.

2002: Apple announces the eMac

2003: Apple launched the iTunes music store

2003: one year later Apple announced it had had 70 Million downloads in the iTunes store

How to 2

What’s the Difference Between a Data Backup and an Archive?

Data Backup

Backups are meant to give you a fast way to recover data. Time Machine is an example of a data backup that macOS has. A backup has two purposes: recovering data after its loss, and recovering data from an earlier time.

Data Archive

Data archiving is meant for long-term storage of data. We’re talking decades. Whereas quick recovery is important for a backup, speed isn’t as important for an archive. What is important is searchability, and the storage medium you choose.

Backups generally store data in a proprietary format, like Time Machine. That’s not good for archiving. What if Apple deprecates Time Machine in 10 years and moves on to a new method? Your data archive is screwed, unless you have an old Mac you can use.

You’ll also want to maintain your files in specific, universal file formats. For example, text files can be read and written to on most computers. PDFs are also generally considered to be a format that most systems and handle.

Backups are part of a disaster recovery plan, and most experts recommend having more than one backup. A good plan is having an external drive at your home, and another external drive somewhere else, like a friend’s house.

SPECIAL An iPhone thank you letter: “Live Photo saved my grandmother’s laugh”

The way that technology can touch us personally is captured in a thank you letter an iPhone user sent to Apple, noting appreciation for Live Photo’s capture of ambient sound and video of a loved one who had passed away. Apple’s chief executive Tim Cook responded with a note of condolences and appreciation for sharing the story, stating “it is deeply inspiring for us.”

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