The Daily Teaspoon: September 24th [Tech, Sports, Podcast]

Tech:

Vlad Savov (The Verge) on the “Apple Bias”

The funny thing is that everyone’s right. Readers are right to claim that the iPhone is treated differently from other smartphones, and reviewers are correct in doing so. Apple makes more in quarterly profit than many of its mobile competitors are worth, and the success and failure of its smartphone plays a large role in shaping the fate of multiple related industries. The iPhone is reviewed like a transcendental entity that’s more than just the sum of its metal, plastic, and silicon parts, because that’s what it is.

Interesting read from somebody who’s on the reviewer side of technology.

Dan Moren (Six Colors) on His Apple Watch Usage 5 Months In

In practice, I use almost none of them. Sending sketches fell by the wayside a couple weeks in. I take the occasional phone call, but doing so on the Watch is almost never the best experience. Siri generally takes a couple tries to respond, so I end up using my iPhone, or, well, Alexa. Most of the apps are too slow and too limited to be of significant benefit to me. I vastly slimmed down my number of Glances, both because having a huge number of them was practically unusable and because most of them took too long to be useful. (I may have to revisit both apps and Glances under watchOS 2 to see if they deliver on promised performance improvements.)

Dan’s experience with the Apple Watch staggeringly matches mine, almost line for line.  Dan specifically mentions that this piece isn’t meant to be disparaging, and I agree.  It’s just the reality of a very new platform and a very new product category.   I love my Watch, and I wear it every day from the time I get up to the time I go to sleep.   The only specific difference between Dan’s experience and mine is that I LOVE everything about the fitness including the lack of social features.  As a person who’s been severely out of shape for my entire life, having a device like the Watch constantly tracking my activity without any social pressure at all has made a gigantic difference in my health and by extension, my life.

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Podcast Recommendations: Week of June 22, 2015

As a podcast addict, I have decided it would be a good idea to post the ones that I really enjoyed, hopefully people can enjoy them as well.  I plan on updating these daily as I listen to them.  Please note my recommendations are based on the day I listen to them, not the day they are necessarily published.  For now I won’t be posting links, just full titles of episodes. Monday, June 22nd

  • WTF with Marc Maron: Episode 613 – President Barack Obama [length: 67 minutes]
    • This was a big one.  Huge victory for the medium of podcasting, and Marc Maron and the President did not disappoint.  A wide-ranging conversation that began with the tragedy in Charleston. I think this is a great medium for politicians as they are able to discuss their positions and values in a much more relaxed format, away from the visual spectacle that TV news has become and the hacky segments of talk radio.  Kudos to Marc Maron for not only scoring the interview, but not abandoning his traditional interview style (or location!) for the leader of the free world.
  • Exponent: Episode 049 – In Aggregate [length: 56 minutes]
    • Ben Thompson, of the fantastic Stratechery website, and James Allworth of Harvard Business Review host the great Exponent podcast weekly.  If you are a fan of the business side of tech, this is absolutely the podcast for you.  The majority of this episode was devoted to the California Labor Commission’s ruling that Uber drivers are employees, thus entitled to benefits.  Unfortunately for us, they are taking a well-deserved break as travel schedules will make the summer difficult. I highly recommend going through old episodes, read descriptions of things that might interest you.  Episode 41 – Bubbles is a particularly interesting one to me.
  • Dunc’d On Basketball: June 22 (Dan Feldman: Hawks and Cavs offseason, NBA News) [Lenght: 67 minutes]
    • Quickly becoming my favorite basketball podcast, hosted by Nate Duncan. Often co-hosted with Daniel Leroux of RealGM, today he was joined by Dan Feldman for a discussion on general NBA news about the ongoing offseason.  I appreciate Nate Duncan’s approach to discussing basketball in a very “grown-up” way and is a completely different voice in terms of existing NBA podcasts.  There’s a lot of good options out there, certainly, but this one has really separated itself over the last month or so.  The sound quality of this one wasn’t great, and in general has been a weak point of the show, but I imagine as the show matures that will be fixed.  For now, enjoy the most important part: the content.

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