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  • M2 MacBook Air teardown reveals accelerometer, simple cooling system

    Much better to turn the audio off while watching the video. Don't know what to say. I feel dumber after listening to that. Will have to wait for the still photography.
  • Hands-on with Apple's M2 MacBook Air in Starlight

    timmillea said:
    Apple's claim of 20% less volume also looks highly dubious, given the actual published measurements. I don't believe it. Perhaps Apple have a different concept of volume to the rest of the World? The claim is provably incorrect. 

    I do wish that any site with any journalistic intention would actually verify these claims instead of parroting the manufacturer's publicity material. 
    I do agree with you that reviewers should actually measure the dimensions and weight of the products they review, as OEMs often game these numbers. It's also one of those things that most people would be really bored by, so, it won't be done unless there is a controversy about it.

    For 2008 to 2020 MBA, the thinnest advertised dimension of the wedge shape, the ~4 mm, is just the very front face of the machine when closed. It then tapers out to about 12 mm or so over the next 50 mm or so, than a slow taper to the max thickness of 16 mm. So you really should not compute volume base on a prism with a base of 16 x 4 mm. It's really a prism with a base of 16 x 12 mm or so. The tapering doesn't really remove that much volume.

    The 2022 MBA has a uniform thickness of 11.3 mm. So, it's really about as thin as the thinnest "real" portion of the older MBA. As has been said many times, the tapering from the edges, especially the flat face, then the taper, create a visual illusion that the older MBA model is a really thin device. The original 2008 to 2009 MBA models went even further. It was 19 mm at it thickest point, and didn't have the cutoff flat sides seen in the 2010 to 2020 models. It just tapered to about 4 mm all around the sides.

    The 2012 to 2020 MBP models also employed tapering. They just had a thicker flat side, about 9 mm or so instead of 4 mm. They were 16 mm devices, but the flat side plus the taper created an illusion of them being thinner than they were. The 2013 to 2020 iMacs were the same.

    This is why Evans Hankey says the 2021 MBP and 2022 MBA models are more "honest" designs. Since they don't have a taper, just a round on the bottom edge, they appear thicker than they are. The MBP is about as thin as the older models even they people think they are thicker. And you think the 2022 MBA can't be thinner than the prior MBA.
  • MacBook Air with M2 processor review: The sweet spot for Mac portables in 2022

    It doesn’t really make sense to say that MBA users generally won’t be using apps that need active cooling and then also complain that the MBA doesn’t support multiple external monitors. Being able to handle a 6K 32 inch external seems fine for something claimed to be for non-demanding apps.
    In our speaking with enterprise, an incredibly common administrative setup with MBA users is a Thunderbolt or USB 3.2 Type C dock at a workstation with a pair of 1080p displays, a keyboard, and sometimes a wired network.

    There is notably less 8K video handling with this segment, meaning none.
    Heh, Enterprise IT has been and will remain a drag on company productivity. What’s stopping IT from providing a larger 4K monitor or a 4K-ish ultra wide?

    Probably some kind of lease agreement or sourcing of monitors or some such. Ultimately, they try to be minimum cost, and put users into an unproductive situation. 

    I’m currently caught in this box. I need to have 1 TB of storage, which my 2018 MBP15 has. I’m up for a refresh, and our IT department is offering M1 Pro MBP16 machines as a replacement, but they are offering only 512 GB storage models. Well, I will continue using my 2018 MBP15 until 1 TB is available, even though the 2021 MBP models are so much better than the 2018 models.

    It may be that I will have to carry around an external SSD in order to get a new machine, but then I’ll have to deal with encryption crap with it. 

    Blaming IT for this mess is just perfectly fine. 
  • Apple VP of industrial design details MacBook Air overhaul

    The GQ article is interesting.

    The MBA is lionized as a kind of huge hit, and articles love to talk about the envelope moment, but the 1st generation 2008 MBA was a failure: too expensive, slow, prone to heat, a mish-mash of ports in a tray flap, and a bit of QA mess. It was the 2010 MBA that put everything together into the market changing product it is known for today. SSD only, the ports were your standard USB and SD card, plus the display du jour (miniDP, TB1, TB2), and most importantly, the price came down to the $1000 to $1600 range. All the right features, performance and price.

    The rMB12, which I think was meant to replace the MBA, also failed. It was basically the 2nd or 3rd product in the Ive-design era (as opposed to Jobs-design era or Hankey-design era), depending on how you count. It's display was too small, the huge pride they had in the butterfly keyboard became a liability, the big gains in Intel perf/Watt with Intel's 10nm that would have made the product more viable never came to fruition, and it was too expensive for its features. Apple never was able to reduce its price.

    The MBA was left to languish during all those rMB12 years until about sometime in early 2017 when the Mac and iPad ship was turned. The big difference was 2 USBC/TB ports and a13" display over the Macbook. Just in time for the pandemic, and the M1 made it the best machine on the market.

    Was really hoping the M2 MBA hit the $1000 price point with 8GB RAM, 256 GB storage as it would have made it a huge hit. With the M1 MBA at $1000 and the M2 MBA at $1200, they are going to split the unit sales, and the M1 MBA could have more sales than the M2 MBA.
  • Ex-Apple engineer explains why the first iPhone didn't have copy and paste

    shamino said:
    Beats said:

    shamino said:
    Apple may have been the first to deploy these technologies on a consumer device, but they didn't invent it.

    Before there was any iPad/iPhone, we were all fascinated by multitouch UI demos produced by Jeff Han (researcher at NYU and founder of Perceptive Pixel, which was since acquired by Microsoft).  For example:

    I don't think Apple ever used Jeff Han's code, and modern multitouch display panels use a completely different technology from what Han was using, but I can guarantee that lots of important people there (like the rest of us) saw these videos and drew inspiration from them.  Including swiping, scrolling and pinch-to-zoom operations.

    Dismissing the hard work of Steve Jobs and Apple engineers because crappy resistive touch screens existed is ludicrous. I was heavy into futuristic cell phones in 2007 and had the highest rated Windows Mobile Phone and it was absolutely garbage compared to what iPhone brought. None of the ideas of Windows Mobile carried over to iPhone and it had none of the cool iPhone inventions like pinch to zoom. There were arrows everywhere in the UI and there was a “calibrate” setting I had to revisit every few days. This was a super high-tech phone in 2007, mobile keyboard and all!
    You didn't actually read anything I wrote, did you?  I didn't say anything about resistive screens or Windows phones.  Where you did you get the idea that I did?

    Jeff Han was not a Microsoft employee at the time.  He was a researcher at NYU, where he developed a lot of the fundamental research behind multitouch interfaces.  He published video demonstrations of his research over a year before Apple announced anything of the sort.  He was using a unique hardware system involving glass panels, cameras and projectors - which nobody else has ever used - but that's irrelevant.  The point is not the digitiizer but all of the user interface concepts that he developed in order to show the usefulness of multitouch.

    I get the impression that you hadn't actually watched his videos when they were published in 2006 and 2007.  You should go watch them now in order to understand what I'm talking about.

    Again, Apple did a tremendous amount of work to bring the iPhone to market, but to claim that they invented the underlying UI concepts like multitouch interfaces is to deny history.
    Han was already 10 years late with his multitouch ideas. He was using a contrast based projection and imaging system to detect touch. That was already patented in the 1990s. Big difference between what was done in the 1990s and the stuff he did seems to be a front projection versus a rear projection for the light source and where the touch detection system is, otherwise it was basically a wall-sized touch design. The idea for controlling a UI with touch was old in the 1990s. Ideas are cheap, not even worth 2¢. A workable and productized touch device? That costs tens to hundreds of millions of dollars.

    Apple invented the underlying UI concepts for current day phones, or perhaps you can say they were the lead in a fusion of ideas from a field of smartphone OEMs after everyone dropped making thumb-board form factors to touchscreen form factors. All this stuff with touch detection, scroll locking, rubber banding, reduction of jitter, lag, keyboard, etc, basically was done at Apple in order to have a competent touch product. Incremental improvements obviously occurred through the years. I bet the amount of tech from Jeff Han's touch implementation is pretty close to zero. Nobody took any ideas from him to make their phones.

    Arguably, I think you can say that Apple's acquisition of Wayne Westerman's Fingerworks in 2005 was a huge acquisition for the iPhone. His tech was probably really what made the iPhone touch UI work, mainly in giving iPhones the least amount of touch input lag. Those drivers were gold. Getting "OS X" to have great responsiveness is a huge part of this too. Can't have one without the other. So, whoever on Scott Forstall's team that optimized the graphics stack for iPhones gets just as much recognition as Westerman"s team did.