Aussie Mac Zone ~ Episode 354

Show 354 – September 28, 2020

Run Sheet ~ Zarn & Michael



Our Aussie Apple Ramblings 

Story 1

Michaels Big Sur woes 

Not a lot of news this week in the Apple world so I thought I would start with some woes when running Beta software.

I did the upgrade to Big Sur last Thursday BUT when I logged back in the screen was flashing light and dark, changing my desktop photos about every second.

I tried changing the background to just a colour. Would not let me change my background choice. I ended up deleting the Desktop pref file, I could select a background BUT still not change it.

I stopped anything auto starting at log in, still happens.

So I reloaded the Big Sur OS, all good, then upgraded,  same issue.

So now I have reloaded again Big Sur and turned off auto updates!



Story 2 ~

Michaels WATCH woes

After looking through the new watch faces I decided I would like to try the Typography face.

Added it to my Series 4 watch.

All good.  Then set a Shortcut to change my face to Typograph at 5.00pm everyday.

Worked like a charm for a couple of days. The new watch shortcut changing my watch face at 5.00pm and back to my normal face at 5.55am. Such Fun!

Then upgraded to the WATCH Beta new Typograph face gone!

When I swipe across on the watch to change face Typograph has gone. A add new face panel is there but Typograph is not in that list.

On the watch app on the iPhone Typograph and Lines faces are available and it lets you set them up with different colour etc BUT when you click “Set as Current Watch Face”, nothing gets added to the WATCH.

So woe is me this week.

Lastly a little trick.

I went to my Apple Store last week to get an Apple Cable.

I was scheduled and had to wait 45 minutes, only to find the cable I wanted was NOT in stock.

I walked 2 minutes to a JB HiFi who had the cable I needed in stock.

So my advice.

When making you appointment at your Apple Store get the staff to confirm whether what you want is in stock! And try other Apple suppliers like JB or Harvey Norman, etc.



Entertainment #1 ~

More about “Doug Unplugs” and “Stillwater,” we mentioned last week

“Doug Unplugs”

Premiere date: Friday, November 13

Hailing from DreamWorks Animation and based on Dan Yaccarino’s “Doug Unplugged” book series, “Doug Unplugs” follows a young robot named Doug who senses there’s more to life than just the facts. While other robots plug in for their daily download, curious Doug unplugs and journeys into the human world, and with his best friend Emma, experiences its wonders firsthand.


Premiere date: Friday, December 4

Based on the Scholastic book series “Zen Shorts” by Jon J Muth, “Stillwater” is produced by Gaumont and Scholastic Entertainment and centers on siblings Karl, Addy and Michael, who are typical kids with typical kid challenges – meaning that sometimes even the smallest things can feel insurmountable. Fortunately for these three, they have Stillwater, a wise panda, as their next-door neighbour. Through his example, stories and gentle humour, Stillwater gives the children a deeper understanding of their feelings as well as tools that help them face their own day-to-day challenges. Stillwater also brings newfound fun and adventure for the three, opening their eyes to the quiet wonders of the world around them, and guiding them to their place within it.



Entertainment #2 –

Oprah Winfrey sits down for exclusive on-camera interview with Mariah Carey on her new memoir, “The Meaning of Mariah Carey,” Thursday, September 24 on Apple TV+

Oprah speaks with superstar Mariah Carey in a far-ranging interview on “The Oprah Conversation”

In an exclusive, far-ranging interview, Mariah sits down with Oprah to talk about her highly anticipated upcoming memoir, “The Meaning of Mariah Carey” (out Tuesday, September 29), as she reveals never-before-told stories about her personal journey that inspired so many songs, the pain in growing up biracial, confronting past traumas and finding freedom.

“The Oprah Conversation” is a timely series that features Oprah leading intimate discussions with today’s foremost newsmakers, thought leaders, and masters of their craft, exclusively on Apple TV+. Filmed remotely and incorporating audience engagement, Oprah hosts conversations that aim to bring truth and perspective to a range of topics shaping our world, revealing gripping stories of human connection.

The Apple Original series continues to explore impactful and relevant topics with fascinating thought leaders from all over the world, and also offers poignant conversations between Oprah and change makers such as Emmanuel Acho, host of the provocative web series “Uncomfortable Conversations with a Black Man” in a two-part episode, Professor Ibram X. Kendi, bestselling author of “How to Be an Antiracist, and Bryan Stevenson, Equal Justice Initiative founder and bestselling author of the memoir that inspired the acclaimed film “Just Mercy.”




Story 3 ~ PIC

The apps you love. From a place you can trust.

9TO5Mac reports ~ Apple is today responding to increasing antitrust pressure with an App Store PR blitz. This includes a complete revamp of its main App Store page, a new page promoting the benefits of the App Store to developers, new messaging, and a new program for developers of streaming video apps.

The response begins on Apple’s homepage, with a large banner at the top pointing visitors to the new App Store page. The headline message is ‘The apps you love from a place you can trust’ …

The new page again stresses the consumer benefits of a curated app store.

For over a decade, the App Store has proved to be a safe and trusted place to discover and download apps. But the App Store is more than just a storefront — it’s an innovative destination focused on bringing you amazing experiences. And a big part of those experiences is ensuring that the apps we offer are held to the highest standards for privacy, security, and content. Because we offer nearly two million apps — and we want you to feel good about using every single one of them.

The new page for developers is headed ‘Together we turn apps into opportunities.’

Apple is committed to helping developers turn their brightest ideas into apps that change the world. That’s why the App Store helps you from start to finish — to build, test, market, and distribute your products and grow your business. Our marketplace is secure, trusted, and accessible — connecting you to over 1.5 billion devices in 175 regions. The App Store and you. Together every step of the way.



Story 4 ~ 

Microsoft and Telstra to partner on cloud, IoT, and digital twins

ZDNet tells us ~ The solutions will be built on Azure and leverage Telstra’s Data Hub.

Microsoft and Telstra have announced an extension of their long-standing partnership, with plans to jointly build cloud-based solutions on Azure while leveraging the Telstra Data Hub.

Specifically, this will see the pair leverage Internet of Things (IoT), edge computing, artificial intelligence, and digital twin capability to develop solutions in areas such as asset tracking, supply chain management, telematics, and smart spaces.

One of those projects will involve Telstra building a digital twin based on Azure across its own commercial buildings, which will be initially deployed at five buildings including the telco’s flagship site at 242 Exhibition St in Melbourne.

Additionally, under the partnership, Telstra will leverage Azure as the cloud platform for the telco’s ongoing internal digital transformation, involving transitioning from legacy and on-premise applications to cloud-based solutions.

The pair also plan to work together to develop solutions to advance their sustainability and climate commitments. Earlier this year, Microsoft announced its ambitious plans to be carbon negative by 2030, while Telstra has set a target of reducing its absolute emissions by 50% by the same time.

“We already have a longstanding relationship with Microsoft and have worked together in areas that are market-leading to create unique experiences for our customers … today’s announcement with Microsoft formalises the several streams of work we are already collaborating on,” Telstra CEO Andy Penn said.

“The global scale of Microsoft’s platform, tools, and applications, together with Telstra’s network solutions, reliability, and leadership, will drive new and unique solutions for Australia.”



Story 5 ~ PIC

What the Orange Dot on Your iPhone Means

GEAR PATROL informs us ~ Is there an orange dot appearing in the top-right corner of your iPhone? Don’t worry. It has nothing to do with connectivity or your iPhone’s battery. It’s simply a new feature of iOS 14, the software update that Apple just rolled out this past week.

The orange dot is an indicator light that turns on every time an app is using your iPhone’s microphone. If you’re recording something using Voice Memos or you ask Siri a question — the orange light will turn on.

You also might see a green dot. This will appear every time an app is using your iPhone’s camera. For example, every time you open your camera app to take a photo or you answer a FaceTime call — the green light will turn on.

The orange and green indicator lights will not appear at the same time. If you’re recording a video on your iPhone, which accesses both its camera and microphones, the green light will appear.

Both of these features are simply designed to protect your privacy. For example, if the orange light appears but the app you’re using hasn’t asked if it could record you — you should be suspicious.

MS This is why I love Apple.  I should not have to think about my privacy.



Story 6 ~ 

iOS 14: Apple Is Building A Fundamentally Different Future For Software

iOS 14 is not neutral.

Forbes reported ~ It will privilege certain kinds of apps, de-prioritise others, and therefore impact what kinds of apps will be successful and which are more likely to fail. At least, according to the former head of Google’s iOS app.

If you’ve seen The Social Dilemma on Netflix, the iOS 14 imperative will ring a bell. Because in its new mobile operating system Apple is building a fundamentally different future for software that will result in attention-focused developers failing, and service-oriented developers winning, Nick Hobbs told me on a recent episode of the TechFirst podcast.

Hobbs is the former head of Google’s iOS app and current CEO of Broadsheet, which makes the subscription news service Brief.

“When you look at iOS 14, you can see that Apple is not neutral on the question of where technology goes in the future,” Hobbs says. “Littered throughout the OS are lots of changes that make it very clear they don’t want their products and platforms to be tools for attention merchants … I think the iOS 14 update is in both ways big and small, a really strong statement that Apple wants to be building a future of services and not one of this monetisation of attention.”

To dive into how iOS 14 changes the paradigm of what mobile computing means, we have to look at how apps worked in previous versions.

For more than a decade, mobile app publishers have fought hard to get their apps installed. Getting installed meant they now owned a small amount of real estate on the “three-foot device,” the most personal computer ever invented that is rarely more than three feet from your body. From that privileged position, they could badger you for attention: throwing push notifications to your phone, adding little red numbers to the top corner of their app icons to let you know that you were missing something. The continual goal: get you to open the app, spend some time, engage with some content, and (maybe) watch a few ads.

iOS 14 thinks different.

For starters, home screen real estate is much harder to achieve.

“By default, all the apps get put in what they call the ‘Library,’ which is kind of a side space, and you can search for them,” Hobbs says. “You can still find them, you can go into the library and drag them onto your home screen. But as a developer, you have to earn that spot on the home screen.”

Even more important, however, is that Apple has created and prioritised widgets.

Widgets provide snippets of an app’s functionality and information without the bother of actually launching the app. 

They have the opportunity to vastly increase how much you use an app, or vastly decrease that time.

a lot more at


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