Author: Jeff Perry (page 1 of 8)

How a small iTunes update 13 years ago changed the media landscape forever

Bradley Chambers writing for 9To5Mac:

June 28th, 2005 might go down as one of the biggest days in the history of media. It was the day Apple announced they were taking podcasting mainstream by including support for Podcasts in iTunes 4.9 and with syncing to the iPod. As rumors continue to swirl of iTunes being dismantled on macOS (in favor of dedicated apps), I thought it might be fun to take a look back at this important decision.

Apple® today announced it is taking Podcasting mainstream by building everything users need to discover, subscribe, manage and listen to Podcasts right into iTunes® 4.9, the latest version of its award winning digital music software and online music store. iTunes users can now easily subscribe to over 3,000 free Podcasts and have each new episode automatically delivered over the Internet to their computer and iPod®.

“Apple is taking Podcasting mainstream by building it right into iTunes,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “Podcasting is the next generation of radio, and users can now subscribe to over 3,000 free Podcasts and have each new episode automatically delivered over the Internet to their computer and iPod.”

The new Podcast Directory in iTunes 4.9 features over 3,000 free audio programs, making it one of the largest Podcast directories in the world, with favorites such as ABC News, Adam Curry, BBC, Clear Channel, The Dawn and Drew Show, Disney, Engadget, ESPN, Newsweek and NPR member stations such as KCRW in Los Angeles and WGBH in Boston.

For podcast fans that have only ever used iPhone apps to download podcasts, you have no idea the lengths we used to go to get our shows. This was also at a time when only a small percentage of homes in the US had broadband (so downloading shows could be time-consuming).

Podcasting wasn’t in my life until 2007, but I don’t think it would have ever been a part of my life if not for Apple doing this. It has become a staple to every aspect of my interests. News, technology, politics, comedy, and everything in between comes from podcasts first and elsewhere a distant second. It is the first thing I listen to after waking up, the only thing I listen to when in the car, and what I listen to when I am in the mood of taking a break from work I am doing (even sometimes during work).

I care deeply about this medium and have for over a decade. I want it to thrive, I want it to continue to be a means for people to express themselves online without having gatekeepers. Apple has made that a possibility because they didn’t make it a place to host podcasts but rather a means to distribute. I still think this was the best call for Apple. Allowing people to own their content in what ever way they want and to then hook it into this directory allows for people to not have to worry about playing in someone else’s backyard.

Apple gave podcasting a platform 13 years ago and kick-started its growth, and for that I couldn’t be more grateful.

Our Favorite Workflows – ASoG 12

Christopher and I decided to talk about some of the things we love about Workflow (soon to be Siri Shortcuts), and what automation could mean for iOS users down the road. This was one of my favorite topics to date and I can’t wait to share what else we have coming on the podcast with automation.

Listen Here

The First Update to Text Case – Chris Hannah

The First Update to Text Case – Chris Hannah:

It hasn’t been long since the release of Text Case, but I’ve already had some great suggestions, so I decided to add them in!

So here it goes.

Five extra formats: – URL Decoded – Capitalise All Words – Camel Case – Snake Case – Hashtags

One format has been “fixed”, and that is Capitalise. It now does the obvious and also capitalises the first letter after a period.

You can now choose which formats you want to enable, by navigating to the Settings page, and flipping the switches. This will obviously allow for a more customised interface, as I imagine some people won’t want all 12 formats to show if there aren’t needed.

I still have two things I want to work on. One is the ability for the action extension to be able to replace the original selected text with the new converted value. The other is a pretty great idea that I can’t share until I figure out how exactly I’m going to implement it. But it will be an advanced feature.

Chris has been working really hard on Text Case and while it might sound like a simple app, this utility can be quite useful when you are on-the-go and writing out things quickly. I know have had times where I wanted to change the format of the text quickly but not know what to do about it. I have tried building clunky workflows that worked for some things but having this app around is just a delight.

Give Chris’ app a download and see what you think of it. If you want to make a suggestion, clearly he is listening!

Microsoft’s Surface Go: iPad Killer? – BirchTree

Microsoft’s Surface Go: iPad Killer? – BirchTree

Too often, people view products as dollar signs first, and products second. Yes, price is a factor when making any purchase, but I don’t think that Microsoft is going to move the needle much by releasing this product. Yes, with it’s similar size, build, and price tag, it absolutely is a direct competitor to the iPad, but I don’t see how this solves problems for real people. At least, not in a way that a multitude of other Windows machines are already doing. I see 2 major problems with the Surface Go.

(Via birchtree.me)

The Microsoft Surface Go never seemed to be an “iPad Killer” to me. It always seemed to be a way for Microsoft to try to compete with Apple and the iPad. Honestly I can’t see many people comparing these two devices evenly, and Matt goes into detail on both software and hardware on this in his post.

My biggest takeaway with Microsoft doing this at all is that they continue to play around with their devices to try and make things for all kind of consumers. Which is a good thing in the long run, but the Microsoft Surface Go seems to be a swing and a miss if I ever saw one.

Link Post Workflow

With Tablet Habit now going daily, I have found myself wanting to post more link posts. Doing this on my Mac is easy with MarsEdit 4, but it isn’t as easy with iOS, until I created a workflow that is a hybrid between Evan Kline of 40Tech and Christopher Lawley at The Untitled Site.

What it Does

For those who aren’t familiar with link posts, it is a very handy way to post articles from elsewhere and add your own input after quoting a selection of the article. You can find an example of one I used recently to get an idea of what I am talking about.

How it Works

So with Workflow, you can use the Share Sheet as a means to run a Workflow and take things like a URL from Safari, your clipboard, and selected text into the workflow to use within it. All three of these examples are used with the Workflow I have created after taking a look at what both Evan and Christopher have done.

LinkPostWorkflow1

First, you need to find the post you want to link in Safari on your iPhone or iPad. From there you select the text you want to use in the post as a quote. With that text selected, open up the share sheet and run the Link Post Workflow.

Workflow Link Post Prompt

As the Workflow Opens up there will be two questions that it will ask you. The first question being what the publication is. In this case it is 40tech. After that it will ask for the author’s name, which is Evan Kline.

Once both the publication and the author is determined the workflow will then take the URL of the website you shared and the selected text you highlighted to make it into a Markdown ready post.

LinkPostWorkflow result

Once all of the text formatting is done a new Ulysses sheet will be made with the entire link post formatted and linked properly. All that is left now is to write your own response to the link post!

You can download the workflow here and make any changes you need to it. Happy posting!

Author and Teacher of Creative Writing E. Christopher Clark: “That’s My Mantra: Just Get to Work”→

Author and Teacher of Creative Writing E. Christopher Clark: “That’s My Mantra: Just Get to Work”:

How do you manage to find the time for writing, in addition to your bread-and-butter job?

It’s hard. I used to carve out a couple of hours per morning or evening. But I have kids now, too. And I made a promise to myself to put family first, so sometimes the writing time disappears in order to help my kids with their homework or their own creative endeavors. But when I do decide to put my butt in the seat to write, I am fiercely protective of that time. I think Stephen King said in On Writing that he doesn’t write every day of every week of his life, but that when he is writing he writes every day. That’s what I strive towards.

What, do you think, is most important for an author: talent, craft, or diligence?

Diligence. We’re all born with some degree of talent, which we nurture by reading a lot and writing a lot. Craft is something you pick up along the way, again by reading and writing a lot. But there’s no getting around the fact that diligence is the most important factor. You have to want it. You have to want it bad, and work at it (in at least some small way) all of the time.

Ulysses isn’t only a great app, but it is also a really well done blog for creatives to draw inspiration from. The questions they ask aren’t just cookie-cutter questions and I am impressed with the answers they get from their interviewees.

I also love how Christopher Clark explains the importance of diligence. It really validates my reasoning for writing every day on Tablet Habit, and also lights a fire under me.

Hexterity: Welcome Back! — Wooji Juice→

Hexterity: Welcome Back! — Wooji Juice:

Ten years ago today, the App Store opened for the first time.

Ten years ago today, Wooji Juice began selling its first iOS app in the App Store.

In the following months, there would be something of a “gold rush” as people piled in to try and capitalise on the success of the iPhone, but Wooji Juice was there on day one.

I’d quit my job a month or two earlier. When the iPhone was announced, I believed that if Apple did what they said they were going to, then it would be a breakthrough product that upended the technology world. But the software was the missing piece of the puzzle.

So when the iPhone OS (as it was known then) SDK became available, I handed in my notice. A couple of weeks later I left, downloaded the SDK, and turned Wooji Juice (my personal blog of occasional ramblings about tech and stuff) into Wooji Juice (my iOS app business). And ten years and a dozen or so apps later, here we are.

Canis is one of those developers that you just want to get to know on a personal level. I didn’t get to know him until I started to look into Ferrite but in the podcasts he has been on and interviews he has done, it is clear that he not only cares immensely about his users but also wants to make sure that his apps are polished and perfect. I am glad he put everything into the apps he made, because I wouldn’t be able to podcast on an iPad without his hard work.

Celebrating the App Store’s 10th Anniversary with a Week of Special Coverage

Celebrating the App Store’s 10th Anniversary with a Week of Special Coverage – MacStories:

Back in December, when I realized that the App Store was going to turn 10 in July, I knew that I wanted to celebrate the event with something special. I don’t typically like to dwell on anniversaries, but a decade of App Store is a big deal; I felt like both MacStories and AppStories were uniquely suited not just to nostalgically commemorate the App Store’s humble beginnings, but to tell the stories of the people whose lives were changed by it over the past 10 years. I wanted to involve the entire MacStories team in this project, and I wanted to reach out to developers who were there in the early days of the App Store as well as those who started making apps in recent years. And I wanted this special event to be at the intersection of longform articles and in-depth podcast conversations, with a healthy mix of stories about the history of the Store, a celebration of its accomplishments, and a critical look at its past missteps and potential for future changes. So, sometime in January, we began planning all of this, and we got to work.

The result, which I’m incredibly happy to announce today, is our App Store at 10 event. Starting today for an entire week, we’re going to publish 1–2 feature stories on the site each day, which will be aggregated at this event hub page. Additionally, there will be one special AppStories episode each day for a total of six interview episodes by the end of the week.

If there is any site that should be covering the App Store’s 10th anniversary it is MacStories. Federico Viticci and his team have done amazing work over the years covering apps and indie developers. Not to mention the longform research projects that are incomparable to anything else out there. I can’t wait to see what comes from them in the coming days.

Congratulations MacStories, here’s to another 10 years.

Do I Miss Touch ID? →

Donnie Harkcom at The Mealy Apple:

There are times where Face ID is annoying and I wish I could have Touch ID back. For instance, when your phone is sitting on a desk or flat surface you cannot unlock your phone unless you hover your head over the top of your phone. I know this might sound insignificant, but it is one of those things you don’t realize you’re missing until it is gone.

This, along with price, was one of the biggest reason I decided to get an iPhone 8 Plus instead of the iPhone X. I know Face ID can be awesome, but when it doesn’t work it can be an inconvenience you’re not ready to endure. Maybe when Face ID 2 comes out I’ll reconsider. Until then I will happily use Touch ID.

The Future of Tablet Habit (Part 2)

So by now you should have heard about the changes I have made to the change to use a MacBook Pro as my main device. I could go into the reasons why, but I want to talk more about what this means for Tablet Habit. In a recent episode of A Slab of Glass I talked about the possibility of moving the website away from Tablet Habit and into something a little less specific.

Thankfully, Mike Rapin and Christopher Lawley talked me off this branding ledge.If you haven’t listened to this episode I really recommend you do! We dive deep into my issue, but also talk more broadly about things like imposter syndrome and the importance of consistency; which brings me to my next announcement.

I plan to write on Tablet Habit daily every Monday through Friday starting this upcoming Monday July 9th. This has been something I have been wanting to do for a while and when I saw that I have been writing on here for over 6 months (it will be a year in October) I knew I wanted to step up my writing and make more consistent content. This venture wasn’t something I thought I would love so much, I mainly did it to take a break from podcasting, but this has been a lot of fun and very exciting to do for the better part of a year. Blogging is something that I think is in my DNA.

I love to share content and write about the things I am passionate about, but seeing people read my work and go out of their way to reach out to me on Twitter has been humbling and exhilarating.

The future of Tablet Habit may not be just about iPads, but it really never was. It was a place for me to share my thoughts on Apple, iOS, productivity, and now macOS as well. These are things I am passionate about and something that I see myself doing regularly for a long time. So while Tablet Habit isn’t an iPad only blog like I intended when I started, I think this change in the narrative is something that is not only going to bring more value to you, but also something that is more fulfilling for me.

I thank you for reading and I hope this change is something that you are as excited about as me. If you have anything you want to talk to me about feel free to leave a comment below, find me on Twitter, or shoot me an email. Until then, I will see you all Monday!

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