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The Loop’s Steve Issue

I have a tremendous amount of respect for Steve Jobs and everything he did in his life, so I wanted to put together an issue of The Loop Magazine dedicated to Steve and his accomplishments. What better day to publish it than on Steve's birthday.

The Loop Magazine: Memories of Steve Jobs

iOS Background Fetching can be Expensive

Michael Tsai - Blog - iOS Background Fetch

My first example of this was when I added Background Fetch to Check the Weather. A weather app's primary function is displaying up-to-the-minute, constantly changing data so in my initial iOS 7 update I experimented with adding highly frequent background updates. The result was far more dramatic than I'd expected. Here are my weather API requests (which cost 0.01¢ per request) per day once the update went live. I saw an immediate jump in traffic, roughly 16x normal. Suffice to say I immediately had to scale back on my requested update frequency.

Ford Drops MS Sync… Goes with BlackBerry?

Dropping MS Sync makes sense. But going with BlackBerry instead?

Threes!

Great game: Threes! on the App Store on iTunes. $199 only, too. iPhone and iPad.

Ukraine Burning

I have no clue what's going on in the Ukraine.

And now I do.

WhatsApp is Worth $16B?

I hadn't even heard about WhatsApp until today. Virtually everyone I message is on iMessage.

Facebook to Buy WhatsApp for $16+ Billion | Re/code

Myth of the Bell Curve

The Myth Of The Bell Curve: Look For The Hyper-Performers

Ken Ham’s “Historical Science”

Dear Creation Museum, all science is "historical science." Here's why:

The real problem with Ham's argument is that it's so blatantly hypocritical. Historic science is actually fine with him—but only when it gives him an answer that can be crammed into his version of the biblical timeline. In the debate, he happily cited a study that showed all domesticated dogs shared a common ancestor—he thinks that's evidence for a dog-kind—but neglected to mention that the study also showed that the ancestor lived over 11,000 years ago. For those keeping track, that means dogs predate Ham's creation.

For biblical reasons, he likes the idea of Pangea, but he doesn't like the fact that the continents are currently moving annoyingly slowly—far too slowly to have broken up Pangea in the 2,500 or so years since the Flood. His website proudly suggests that there might have been a period of catastrophic plate tectonics where the continents raced around the globe.

Windows 8 a Disaster

According to Paul Thurrott, anyway:

This is not open to debate, is not part of some cute imaginary world where everyone's opinion is equally valid or whatever. Windows 8 is a disaster. Period.

While some Windows backers took a wait-and-see approach and openly criticized me for being honest about this, I had found out from internal sources immediately that the product was doomed from the get-go, feared and ignored by customers, partners and other groups in Microsoft alike. Windows 8 was such a disaster that Steven Sinofsky was ejected from the company and his team of lieutenants was removed from Windows in a cyclone of change that triggered a reorganization of the entire company. Even Sinofsky's benefactor, Microsoft's then-CEO Steve Ballmer, was removed from office. Why did all this happen? Because together, these people set the company and Windows back by years and have perhaps destroyed what was once the most successful software franchise of all time.

Michael Sam is Gay

The NYTimes has the piece: N.F.L. Prospect Michael Sam Proudly Says What Teammates Knew: He's Gay.

I'm glad to see that we're moving in the right direction. Even as little as five years ago, this would have been a bigger story than it is today.

Asked if he was nervous about the step he is taking, Sam told people at a Saturday night dinner party at the Los Angeles home of publicist Howard Bragman: "You all are the ones who are nervous. I'm excited."

Flappy Bird – Wha?

I don't understand how people can waste hours and hours playing a game like this, especially when they're forgoing much deeper, more meaningful experiences around them. Even watching a good movie would be a better use of time.

Analyzr 2.0 Coming in March

Three years ago today we released the first version of Analyzr - version 0.9.

By the end of next month, we'll introduce our first paid upgrade - version 2.0. It will add, among other things:

  1. Vastly improved screen recording
  2. Pictures in the Library
  3. Live Video recording via iSight, USB, Firewire, or Lightning cameras
  4. Export to YouTube, Flickr, and The Facebook
  5. Retina graphics app-wide

The Student version gets a few of these things, too, making both a nice upgrade. Currently (this may change), we'll offer upgrades at $149 and $29 - less than half the cost of a new purchase, despite the free upgrades many have enjoyed for two or three years.

I'll write more when the applications near release. In the meantime, you can check out the site or our page on The Facebook.

Woz Thinks Apple Should Make an Android Phone

Woz: we love him, but he's clearly out of touch with modern-day Apple.

How Did We Get Here – Nye vs. Ham

Eric Bangeman reports for Ars: How did we get here? A brief history of the evolution vs. creationism debate.

I'm looking forward to the Cosmos show on Fox.