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The 2021 Fall Foliage Prediction Map

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Fall Foliage 2021

Well, the leaves are starting to change up here in ol’ Vermont,1 so it’s time to take a peek at the 2021 Fall Foliage Map from smokymountains.com. Apple pie is just around the corner!

  1. One fucker of a tree near my house has turned completely bright red already. Like, slow down mate.

Tags: maps   USA
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jheiss
6 days ago
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Note that Jason has advanced the date on his map to several weeks in the future.
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★ Initial Details on Using Driver’s Licenses and State ID’s in Apple Wallet

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Apple Newsroom:

Apple today announced that it is working with several states across the country, which will roll out the ability for their residents to seamlessly and securely add their driver’s license or state ID to Wallet on their iPhone and Apple Watch. Arizona and Georgia will be the first states to introduce this new innovation to their residents, with Connecticut, Iowa, Kentucky, Maryland, Oklahoma, and Utah to follow. The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) will enable select airport security checkpoints and lanes in participating airports as the first locations customers can use their driver’s license or state ID in Wallet. Built with privacy at the forefront, Wallet provides a more secure and convenient way for customers to present their driver’s licenses and state IDs on iPhone or Apple Watch.

There’s a lot of information about exactly how this will work in the Newsroom post, including screenshots. I got to talk with Apple about this today, and I’m impressed. A few important details:

Driver’s licenses and state IDs in Wallet are only presented digitally through encrypted communication directly between the device and the identity reader, so users do not need to unlock, show, or hand over their device.

This is a super key point. Of course no one wants to hand over their phone to anyone. More importantly, no one should ever hand their phone to a police officer, and that goes a hundredfold if it’s unlocked.1 The Wallet system Apple has designed for ID is very much like Apple Pay. When you pay with a physical credit card, you often hand your card to an employee. When you pay with Apple Pay, you never hand your phone to an employee. It wouldn’t even work, because no one else can authorize an Apple Pay transaction without your biometric authentication. This ID feature for Wallet is exactly like that: it doesn’t work without your biometric authentication, and your phone does not unlock when you use it.

An interesting sidenote: when using a Touch ID iPhone with Apple Wallet’s ID feature, you must register one and only one finger when you add your ID to your Wallet, and whenever you verify your ID in Wallet, you’ll need to use that same finger. Apple has never recommended allowing your spouse or partner to register one of their fingers on your iPhone, but many people do that. This feature is designed to ensure that the same person who enrolled their state ID in Wallet is the same person verifying it biometrically. (This is not an issue with Face ID, obviously.)

To use your ID in Wallet, you tap your phone (or watch) against an NFC terminal, and you get an Apple Pay-like sheet showing you who is asking for your ID (e.g., TSA), and exactly which details from your ID they’re asking for (e.g., name, photo, date of birth — but perhaps not other embedded details like your blood type or your home address). So if you’re just buying booze, say, and the clerk or server needs to check your age, they could prompt only to verify that you’re 21 or older, without even seeing your exact birthdate, let alone any other details from your ID. It is exceedingly more private than handing over a physical ID card, perhaps even more so than using Apple Pay compared to handing over a physical credit card.

Also, it’s an open standard:

Apple’s mobile ID implementation supports the ISO 18013-5 mDL (mobile driver’s license) standard which Apple has played an active role in the development of, and which sets clear guidelines for the industry around protecting consumers’ privacy when presenting an ID or driver’s license through a mobile device.


Apple announced Apple Pay 7 years ago. It worked at few places at first. Soon, though, it started being accepted at more establishments, as businesses upgraded older terminals with new card readers for modern chip-enabled cards. But two years in, the impatient gimme-that-one-cookie-now-I-don’t-care-if-I-can-just-wait-a-few-minutes-and-get-a-whole-bunch-of-cookies-later geniuses at Business Insider were running headlines like “Apple Pay Is Struggling to Catch On”.

You don’t see headlines like that any more. Nor do you see many headlines about Google Pay “catching up” — it’s not and maybe never will.

These things take time, partnerships, evangelism, planning, and diligent hard work. There were a lot more complaints asking why Apple Pay didn’t work almost everywhere circa 2016 than there are kudos now that it does work almost everywhere. Patience and focus are essential to winning a long game, but success can be rather thankless. Apple excels at thankless long games. Other companies, not so much.

I expect a similar timeline for using ID through Apple Wallet: a year or two where it seems like we can’t really use it anywhere, another few years where we start using it more and more, and then, when we start getting close to a decade down the road, without much fanfare, it’ll be our default method of presenting ID.2


  1. Seriously, never ever hand your phone to a cop or anyone vaguely cop-like, like the rent-a-cops working for TSA. If they tell you that you must, refuse. If you really need to hand it over, they’ll take it from you. Also, and this is really important, something you should internalize now, so you don’t have to try to remember it in a moment of stress or panic: how to hard-lock your iPhone.

    With a Face ID iPhone, you hard-lock your iPhone by pressing and holding the side button and either volume button. Two seconds or so — just long enough to make the “Slide to power off” screen appear. (That screen also has sliders for Medical ID and Emergency SOS.) With a Touch ID iPhone, you just press and hold the power button.

    Once you do this, your iPhone will require your passcode to unlock. You can’t use Face ID or Touch ID to unlock until after you’ve unlocked with your passcode. That means even if someone confiscates your phone by force, they cannot unlock it by pointing it at your face or by forcing your finger onto the Touch ID sensor.

    Don’t just memorize this, internalize it, so you can do it without even thinking. Make it something you know the way your know your own middle name. By design, it’s an action you can perform surreptitiously while your iPhone remains in your pocket or purse.

    Another action to remember: If you click the power button five times in a row, your iPhone will immediately sound a klaxon and will initiate an Emergency SOS call in three seconds. This will also hard-lock your phone, but, by design, it is the opposite of surreptitious. ↩︎

  2. I’ll tell you what would be some nice icing on the cake: if Apple can convince state DMVs to let Apple design the digital cards in Wallet. My driver’s license is so goddamned ugly — mostly typeset in Arial (of-fucking-course), with a script font for “Pennsylvania” that looks like it came on a clip art CD included free with every Compaq PC in 1994 — that if it were a design project for a class I was teaching, I’d pull the student aside and make them this offer: take an F for the project, or, promise to change majors and I’ll give them a gentleperson’s C on their way out the door of design school. Most other states don’t do much better. ID cards should be beautiful and inspiring objects, a source of pride. Help us Apple-Wan Kenobi, you’re our only hope. ↩︎︎

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jheiss
17 days ago
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Maybe this will be cool, but the argument that these things become ubiquitous with time doesn't fly with me. I rarely even think to try Apple Pay (or tap-to-pay with a physical card) anymore. It's hard to tell whether a place accepts tap-to-pay, and half the time even if they have the equipment it isn't working for some reason or other.
thepyrate
17 days ago
I think your mileage will vary depending on where you live. In Australia EVERYWHERE supports Apple Pay, virtually by default. But we also had tap to pay basically ubiquitous while the USA was still excitedly telling customers they could use chip cards (I’m not sure what the deal is here, but these POS technologies seem to roll out fast and wide here). As such, I rarely even remember to carry my wallet or use my bank card, I Apple Pay everything from parking to fast food to shopping and major purchases. If somewhere doesn’t accept Apple Pay (you can’t pay a parking fine with it, inexplicably) then it is noticeable and a major inconvenience. Gruber himself posted (only last year I think) about how “nobody at a drive thru window will hold the POS machine out the window for you to tap it with your phone” - meanwhile here in Australia POS machines with a side handle used in this exact way had been widespread for YEARS. Long story, but the point is there are definitely places this sort of thing will likely catch on like wildfire. If Apple Pay is the yardstick, then Australia is very likely such a place.
lukeburrage
17 days ago
I just took a three week trip to the UK and didn’t take use a credit card once, let alone cash. I ONLY used my Apple Watch. And when ordering food to my table at restaurants, the web apps all used Apple Pay so I didn’t need to enter credit card details. This is different from Germany, where Apple Pay is only available in 90% of purchases, but that is less of a not-Apple situation than a lingering cash-only situation.
retroneo
17 days ago
Here in remote Australia, I haven't seen somewhere that doesn't accept tap to pay for years. One man market stands have used Apple Pay capable square readers for years here. Vending machines and carwashes were contactless a long time ago. There are a few parking meters in some towns left that only take only coins, but you typically can pay with an app on your phone instead with those - and avoid the problem of an expiring meter too. You can't make a card terminal not accept Apple Pay here, so it worked everywhere on day one (and banks had given everyone contactless debit cards automatically long before then)
jheiss
17 days ago
The US does seem to lag the rest of the world in adopting new payment tech for whatever reason. Literally the minute before I got the email about the latest comment here I got an email from Chase Bank titled "Tap to Pay is accepted at thousands of merchants nationwide!"
lukeburrage
17 days ago
Ah yes, on our trip we took some pound coins to pay for parking if the machines didn't accept cards, as that happened on a previous trip. But no, every machine accepted Apple Pay from the watch/phone, and some even used numberplate recognition to tell you how long you've been parked and how much you need to pay on the way out! Living in the future is stress free.
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Our Long National iOS 15 Safari Beta Nightmare Is Over

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Juli Clover, again:

Apple in iOS 15 beta 6 has added a toggle to move the Safari address bar to the top of the interface, which returns Safari to an iOS 14-like design and mitigates all of the Safari changes introduced in earlier betas.

Those who prefer the bottom bar can still opt to have that toggled on with the Tab Bar view, but Apple has also changed the look and the url bar at the bottom has been merged with a dedicated control panel that does away with trying to merge all page management options into a single address bar view.

I was a little worried when beta 5 shipped last week and Safari’s interface was unchanged, but beta 6’s changes are very good.

The initial iOS Safari 15 design failed in two big ways. First and foremost, Apple tried to squeeze two horizontal bars’ worth of controls into a single bar. Safari needs two toolbars. Second, the whole “floating toolbar” thing looked cool but wasn’t usable.

But they didn’t have to give up moving the address bar to the bottom of the screen. By default, that’s where it’s going to be on iOS 15. They also kept the side-to-side swiping for switching between tabs, if you keep the tab bar at the bottom of the screen.

In a very real sense, the system worked. It’s good that Apple tried something ambitious and original with the layout for Safari on iPhone. The reason for the trend toward moving more navigation controls to the bottom of the screen is obvious: our phones are bigger than ever (iPhone 12 Mini aside), and our hands aren’t growing. It’s also good that Apple was receptive to the feedback from those using the developer and public betas. They listened, they fixed the design to address the problems, and here we are, with a layout for Mobile Safari that I think is better than ever. (I hedge with “I think” only because it just shipped — my opinions aren’t fully formed.)

The unusual part is that we got to see Apple’s design process play out in public. The Safari team has been kept busy this summer. (There has to be one hell of backstory here, right?) There was a certain pessimism amongst some who perceived the problems with the original iOS 15 Safari design, simply because Apple seldom makes drastic UI changes between their unveiling at WWDC in June, and when they officially ship in the fall. But seldom isn’t never.

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jheiss
31 days ago
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I was unsettled when the NY Times moved their navigation bar to the bottom of the app a few months ago, but I've come around to it being the right choice for the same reason John cites here: phones are too big to put this stuff at the top of the screen anymore. I imagine this will become a trend.
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Tokyo 2020 Olympics Medal Count

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It pleases me greatly that the U.S. finished with the most gold medals and the most total medals. That’s how it ought to be.

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jheiss
39 days ago
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I'm American so sure, yay us, but why exactly is that "how it ought to be"?
mxm23
37 days ago
Manifest destiny? American imperialism? Grubes is off base here.
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Internal Letter Circulates at Apple — and Leaks to The Verge — Pushing Back Against Returning to the Office

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1,400 words to say they’d prefer a policy that allows teams within Apple to determine their own remote work policies. Good communication is to the point, and this is not to the point at all. No wonder the letter-writer(s) feel “unheard”. It’s hard to get through the whole letter, and if you do make it through, it reeks of self indulgence. Some serious ✊🍆 vibes. The “formal requests” at the end about employees with disabilities and the “environmental impact of returning to onsite [sic] in-person work” are such transparent pandering. (I have never once heard of Apple not doing whatever it takes not only to accommodate employees with any disability, but to make them feel welcome.)

And who are these people who took jobs at Apple not knowing the company’s on-site culture? Do they think Apple built a new $4 billion campus on a lark? Three days a week on site and two days remote is a huge change for Apple.

Given that these letters keep leaking to Zoe Schiffer at The Verge, I can’t help but think that the problem for Apple is that they’ve grown so large that they’ve wound up hiring a lot of people who aren’t a good fit for Apple, and that it was a mistake for Apple to ever hook up a company-wide Slack. Companies are not democracies, but the employees writing these letters sure seem to think Apple is one. It’s not, and if it were, the company would sink in a snap. Apple’s new “three days on site” policy wasn’t a request for comments — it was a decision — and Tim Cook’s company-wide letter already leaves room for individual teams to adjust it to their own needs.

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jheiss
106 days ago
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Companies aren't democracies, but neither are they dictatorships. Employees can express their preferences and opinions, and if their employer doesn't listen they can vote with their feet. Apple certainly compensates its employees well, but so do several of their competitors.
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1 public comment
steingart
106 days ago
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Grubes at his boot licking worst
Princeton, NJ
joelowrance
99 days ago
Did you miss the Uyghur post?

★ How to Enable ‘Your Watch Is Fully Charged’ Notifications in WatchOS 7 and iOS 14

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One of my favorite new features in WatchOS 7 and iOS 14 is an option to have your iPhone display a notification when your paired Apple Watch is fully charged. This feature was announced at WWDC 2020, and Juli Clover at MacRumors wrote a story about it the next day. It’s simple.

I didn’t start using this feature until the fall, when I began testing an Apple Watch Series 6, which I reviewed here. Eventually, I switched from that Series 6 review unit back to my personal Apple Watch, a Series 5 I bought last year. I didn’t give it much thought until this weekend, but I stopped getting those charging notifications when I switched watches, and I couldn’t figure out why. So, I asked about it on Twitter:

When I was using my Series 6 review unit, I got these notifications every time it charged. Now that I’m back on my own Series 5 watch, I never get them. Anyone else not getting these “Your watch is fully charged” notifications?

A lot of people who responded in that thread were as confused as I was about the feature. But it didn’t take long to figure out what was going on. It turns out that the setting to enable these notifications is in the “Sleep” section of the Apple Watch app on your phone. That makes some sense — the idea is that the people who most need these notifications are people who are tracking their sleep with Apple Watch, and thus can’t charge their watch overnight because they’re wearing it.

The problem is, if you haven’t set up your watch to track sleep in the Health app, the setting for these battery notifications doesn’t appear in the Apple Watch app. This is what the Sleep section in the Apple Watch app looks like if you have not set up Sleep in the Health app:

Screenshot of the Sleep section of the Apple Watch app in iOS 14.

After you enable Sleep in the Health app (a multi-step process that requires going through a few screens to set sleep goals and a schedule), the Sleep section in the Apple Watch app looks like this, and the battery notification setting is obvious:

Screenshot of the Sleep section of the Apple Watch app in iOS 14.

When I was testing my Series 6 review unit watch, I set all this up so I could try the new built-in sleep tracking features. I wound up not liking any of it, and I turned it all off by the time I stopped wearing the review unit. But because I had enabled Sleep tracking in Health for that watch, the option to get charging notifications remained available and enabled. I didn’t know it was there, and was only available because I had at least initially turned on Sleep in Health.

When I switched back to my Series 5 watch, I never enabled Sleep in Health for that watch, because I knew I didn’t like WatchOS 7’s sleep features.1 But the charging notifications I did want were never made available, because they only appear in the Apple Watch app after you enable Sleep in the Health app.

After I figured this out, it was easy to start getting “fully charged” notifications from my watch again. I just turned on Sleep in Health, then disabled all the actual WatchOS 7 Sleep features, and left the option enabled for battery notifications.

It’s all a bit confusing, because I don’t think it makes intuitive sense that these notifications are filed under “Sleep”. Nor that you need to set up Sleep in one app (Health) to get features enabled in another app (Apple Watch). I get why people who use the built-in Sleep features would be interested in the charging notification, but I never would have figured this out on my own. And it feels a bit convoluted that the solution involved me turning on a bunch of Sleep features didn’t want to use to get a battery notification setting to appear.


  1. I actually do use my Apple Watch for sleep tracking — but with David Smith’s excellent Sleep++ app. My pal Merlin Mann turned me onto Sleep++ during an episode of my podcast back in May 2019. What I love about using Sleep++ is that it’s entirely passive. I don’t set a schedule, Sleep++ doesn’t tell me when to go to sleep, and I don’t have to do anything when I go to bed other than just wear my Apple Watch while I sleep. Sleep++ just looks at my biometric data and it figures out when I’m asleep, and sends me a simple report in the morning after I wake up. ↩︎

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jheiss
193 days ago
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That explains why I started getting these notifications. (I recently setup Sleep on my iPhone.) And now I've turned the notifications off. Yay!
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