Apple Park opens to employees in April


Apple today announced that Apple Park, the company’s new 175-acre campus, will be ready for employees to begin occupying in April. The process of moving more than 12,000 people will take over six months, and construction of the buildings and parklands is scheduled to continue through the summer.


Steve would have turned 62 this Friday, February 24. To honor his memory and his enduring influence on Apple and the world, the theater at Apple Park will be named the Steve Jobs Theater.

Opening later this year, the entrance to the 1,000-seat auditorium is a 20-foot-tall glass cylinder, 165 feet in diameter, supporting a metallic carbon-fiber roof.

The Steve Jobs Theater is situated atop a hill — one of the highest points within Apple Park — overlooking meadows and the main building.


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Apple says iOS 10.2.1 has reduced unexpected iPhone 6s shutdown issues by 80%

Matthew Panzarino:

Over the past couple of iPhone versions users have complained of “unexpected” shutdowns of their devices. Some iPhone 6, 6S, 6 Plus and 6S Plus devices could basically go dark unexpectedly, forcing a user to have to plug them into an outlet to get them to power back on.

Apple has been working on this very annoying bug and it says it has come up with a fix of sorts that should mitigate the problem on a majority of iPhone 6 and iPhone 6s devices. The fix is actually already on your iPhone if you have installed iOS 10.2.1 — something that around 50 percent of iOS users have already done. After letting the fix simmer on customer devices, Apple now has statistics to share on how it has improved the issue, citing 80 percent reduction on iPhone 6s and 70 percent reduction on iPhone 6 devices.

I saw this a few times with my iPhone 6S plus. It was annoying, and hasn’t happened once on my 7 plus since I upgrade, which is good.


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Marco Arment’s Overcast 3 Design Walkthrough

Overcast 3 is now available, and it’s a huge update, mostly in the design and flow of the interface. I’ve been working on it since last summer, informed by over two years of testing, usage, and customer feedback.

I designed Overcast 1.0 in 2014 for iOS 7, and it was a product of its time: it used ultra-thin text and lines against stark, sharp-edged, full-screen white sheets and translucent blur panes, with much of the basic functionality behind hidden gestures. That fundamental design carried through every update until today.

My design goals for 3.0 were:

  1. Update the style from iOS 7 to today: More affordances, more curves, thicker fonts, less translucency, more tactility. App-design fashion doesn’t stand still, and many iOS 7-era designs now look dated.

  2. Bring all functionality into the open: Add visible controls and affordances to anything that was previously hard to find or behind a hidden gesture, such as table-cell swipe actions and actions that first require tapping corner “Edit” buttons.

You wouldn’t believe how many customers have asked me to add features that were already there, or couldn’t find basic functions like deleting episodes, because they weren’t apparent enough in the design.

  1. Adapt to larger phones: Enlarge touch targets and make one-handed use faster and easier, even when only part of the screen is within easy reach. I also wanted to reduce the potential for (and effects of) mis-tapping, especially around the lower left and right screen edges, which I believe will become increasingly important as future iPhones presumably get thinner side bezels.

Overcast 1.0 was designed for the iPhone 5S. Some fundamentals needed to be revisited now that the vast majority of my customers are on 4.7- and 5.5-inch screens.

I’ve been using Overcast since version 1, and the new update is massive and nice.

Make sure you read the rest of Marco’s walkthrough to see all the changes he’s made in depth.


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Alexa, Siri, Cortana: The Problem With All-Female Digital Assistants

Joanna Stern, writing for The Wall Street Journal:

You get the point: The virtual assistants popping up in our lives sound overwhelmingly female. “I’m female in character,” Amazon’s Alexa responds if you ask her if she is a woman. In their own clever ways Google, Apple and Microsoft’s voice assistants will tell you they’re genderless…in unmistakably womanlike voices.

As femme bot after femme bot has invaded our phones , speakers, cars, TVs — even our refrigerators — I’ve been left wondering: Where the man bots at? And why do these hunks of plastic and electronics need to be assigned a gender at all? My Amazon Echo doesn’t have any reproductive organs.


Siri may default to a female voice in the U.S. but Apple provides both male and female voice options for iPhone and iPad users to choose from. In fact, on iPhones where the language is Arabic, French, Dutch or British English, Siri defaults to a male voice.


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Reviewing The Farberware 7 in 1 Programmable Pressure Cooker

Reviewing The Farberware 7 in 1 Programmable Pressure Cooker

The Farberware 7 in 1 Programmable Pressure Cooker

Let me tell you about my latest kitchen gadget, it’s one that I’d been eying for a while and finally decided to pick up.

The Farberware 7 in 1 Programmable Pressure Cooker is a handy electric pressure cooker. I’ve owned pressure cookers for years, but they
were always the usual stovetop variety which involved quite a bit of work to use it as you had to watch for it to reach maximum pressure and then reduce heat, etc.

This pressure cooker, you just plug it in, load up the food you are cooking and select your mode and time to cook.

Once done, it switches to keep warm mode, just like a slow cooker does, in fact, there’s even a slow cooker mode if you want your food to take longer to cook, or you can use the delayed start mode to have it turn on at a later time and start cooking.

The food this cooks is fall off the bone tasty.

It does involve a little playing to figure out all the right settings, for example searing.

When you sear meat before adding liquids, you have to use the right oils. Olive oil is a huge no no as it doesn’t have a high smoke point and once it reaches the high heat will just start exploding out of the pot, so you want to use either canola oil, avocado oil or coconut oil.

That’s a general rule for all pressure cookers, so keep that in mind.

One of my favourite pressure cooker dishes is chicken breast, I add a cup of chicken broth, half a cup of water, some salt, some pepper, some paprika and garlic and top it off with some lemon juice and let it cook.

All I had to do was set it to the chicken mode, and leave it at the default time of 20 minutes. Once done, it went to keep warm mode and made tasty chicken.

I give this pressure cooker a 10, and highly recommend you grab one for your kitchen.


  • 6 Quart Capacity: Ideal for families or groups of 4-6 people
  • 9 Preset Cooking Functions: Allowing you to enjoy your favourite meals with the push of a button.
  • Safety Pressure Release Valve: Automatically releases pressure from inside the pressure cooker when the pressure levels become too high. This safety feature not only protects you, but also your food!
  • Stainless Steel Construction: Crafted from premium stainless steel, you can rest assured that you will be able to use this pressure cooker for many years to come.
  • LED Display: Making it simple to read the menus and make the right selections.

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Fire starts at Samsung’s Note 7 battery supplier

Jacob Kastrenakes, writing for the Verge:

A small fire broke out today at a Samsung-related factory responsible for producing batteries for none other than the Galaxy Note 7. According to Reuters, the fire started in a waste facility and was caused by products including faulty batteries. The fire was reportedly extinguished before it could cause any substantial delays or harm to the factory. Samsung said that no one was killed.

The factory, Samsung SDI, was one of two that made batteries for the Note 7, according to Reuters. The Note 7, of course, quickly became infamous when units of the device began catching fire because of battery issues.

There’s apparently some confusion about how the fire actually started. Samsung SDI said it happened in a waste facility, but a local fire department said it began inside “production workshops.” The fire department says it sent 110 firefighters and 19 trucks to deal with the fire.


Are we really surprised at this point?


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GVFS (Git Virtual File System)

Saeed Noursalehi:

Here at Microsoft we have teams of all shapes and sizes, and many of them are already using Git or are moving that way. For the most part, the Git client and Team Services Git repos work great for them. However, we also have a handful of teams with repos of unusual size! For example, the Windows codebase has over 3.5 million files and is over 270 GB in size. The Git client was never designed to work with repos with that many files or that much content. You can see that in action when you run “git checkout” and it takes up to 3 hours, or even a simple “git status” takes almost 10 minutes to run. That’s assuming you can get past the “git clone”, which takes 12+ hours.

Even so, we are fans of Git, and we were not deterred. That’s why we’ve been working hard on a solution that allows the Git client to scale to repos of any size. Today, we’re introducing GVFS (Git Virtual File System), which virtualizes the file system beneath your repo and makes it appear as though all the files in your repo are present, but in reality only downloads a file the first time it is opened. GVFS also actively manages how much of the repo Git has to consider in operations like checkout and status, since any file that has not been hydrated can be safely ignored. And because we do this all at the file system level, your IDEs and build tools don’t need to change at all!


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Google, Apple, Facebook, Uber plan to draft joint letter opposing Trump’s travel ban

Kara Swisher, writing for Recode:

Alphabet, Apple, Facebook and Uber, along with a consumer packaged goods company and others are working together on a letter opposing President Trump’s travel ban, according to sources.

Tech companies are leading the effort but are working to involve other industries, the sources say. The letter will be the first major push from big U.S. businesses to try to support immigration in the wake of recent travel restriction order by Trump.

President Trump signed an executive order last week barring Syrian refugees from entering the U.S. as well as temporarily suspending travel from seven countries that have largely Muslim populations.

Trump’s action sparked a backlash, erupting in protests over the weekend at airports around the country, including New York, San Francisco, Chicago, Washington, D.C., and Boston.

This travel ban is just bad on so many levels.


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Google’s Sergey Brin and CEO speak at Trump immigration ban rally

Matt Weinberger, writing for Business Insider:

Google CEO Sundar Pichai and cofounder Sergey Brin addressed crowds of employees rallying against President Trump’s immigration ban on Monday, as about 2,000 Google staffers in offices worldwide took to the streets with signs.

At least one hundred people outside Google’s downtown San Francisco offices took to the streets on Monday afternoon, carrying signs and chanting. “You build a wall, we’ll tear it down,” was one such chant.


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