the banker’s smile

… in Apple’s case the contrast hits more noticeably given their insistence on presenting themselves as a company that’s intimately close to their users, caring about their privacy, manufacturing devices that “improve and enrich people’s lives”, and so on. Perhaps I’m just rambling here, but what I kept feeling as the event unfolded is that Apple both gets and doesn’t get their customers; that Apple’s genuineness is part real, part façade. For better or for worse, there was a honesty and candidness in Jobs’s Apple that I don’t feel at all with this Apple.

Apple’s smile feels like the smile a banker wears when you say you want to open an account there.

Riccardo Mori, Brief notes on Apple’s “Time Flies” event

Apple’s Thirty Percent Cut

… the difference between 30% and something reasonable like 10% would probably have meant some of my friends would still have their jobs at Omni, and Omni would have more resources to devote to making, testing, and supporting their apps.

But Apple, this immensely rich company, needs 30% of Omni’s and every single other developer’s paycheck?

Brent Simmons

One of the most sane critics to the Apple 30% fee querelle that has gone over the last weeks.

iMazing HEIC Converter

To make a long story short, I needed a way to convert HEIC photos extracted iPhone (and yours, if you have iOS 11 or later on your device) on my macOS via the Photos.app that would keep intact all the metadatas (included the creation date).

A little search on the web took me to iMazing HEIC Converter, a free app for macOS and Windows, that works perfectly. That’s all!

Homebrew and Apple’s missing Command Line Tools updates

I really can’t imagine how many people out there are using Homebrew, a software realized to manage the installation of lots of *NIX software packages in their macOS systems.

To me, if you’re a developer or involved in any form with Science, it’s a must-have for having at hans thousands of open-source software packages. Unfortunately, even with the best tools, issues can arise and the quality of the tool arises when routines like brew doctor are available and help you find the problem and give you directions on how-to solve them.

Such was the case of brew giving the following warning after the installation of the .2 release of macOS Catalina 10.15.

nicola@scamander ~ % brew doctor
Please note that these warnings are just used to help the Homebrew maintainers
with debugging if you file an issue. If everything you use Homebrew for is
working fine: please don't worry or file an issue; just ignore this. Thanks!

Warning: A newer Command Line Tools release is available.
Update them from Software Update in System Preferences or
https://developer.apple.com/download/more/.

Since everything worked as expected, I followed the tip and ignored the warning. But weeks passed and there was no sign of updates by Apple for their Command Line Tools … and I started to investigate.

De facto there was no apparent issue. Updates where regularly received, brew was ok, so I had simply to follow the tip and manually download them on the Apple Developers’ site (whish is freely available and accessible just using your Apple-ID).

Once downloaded the Command_Line_Tools_for_Xcode_11.3.dmg package (for ~240 MB), I just had to install it and, at the end, verify with the brew doctor command if everything was ok. And it was.

Your Privacy: the Apple and iPhone take

In Italy on TV we’re being introduced to one of the latest ads by Apple: the spot Private Side indulging over the security and privacy options given by an iPhone (but the hidden message is that you can find that in all the Apple product line).

While this is not false, it’s also not entirely true and as the Mozilla Foundation makes us notice in one of their blog’s article Apple can – and should – do more. For example they could take a different approach to the unique Advertising ID each device holds.

Yep! Each phisical device has a unique ID to identify you for advertizers … and you can limit its features and even renew and “randomize” it on some time interval. But that should be the default and not an option. Mozilla started a petion for this cause.

I’ve signed the petition, and invited you to do the same HERE.

If you have an iPhone (or an iPad or a 4th gen AppleTV) you can change the default behaviour of this feature following the official Apple Support instructions: Opt out of interest-based ads in the App Store and Apple News.