MyAppleMenu - Fri, Jan 23, 2015

Fri, Jan 23, 2015 Day of the Twisty Little Passages, All Alike

I've never really played text adventure games. (The closest 'text game' that I've ever played was You Don't Know Jack.) But, if you like the genre, here's something for you.

Words, Words, Words

David Auerbach, Slate:

The best video game I played last year is a science-fiction thriller about alchemy, and it has no graphics or sound effects. With little more than text, it manages to be far more impressive and innovative than the last Metal Gear Solid game.

Hadean Lands is a text adventure, a genre also known by the fancier name “interactive fiction.” Software company Infocom popularized the form in the 1980s with floppy-disk games like Zork and Trinity. But Hadean Lands, written by longtime interactive-fiction stalwart Andrew Plotkin, isn’t merely an excellent, challenging, and creative game. It is an unabashedly modernist and self-referential game, one that builds on the past achievements of its genre and pushes at its boundaries, much like how modernist authors from James Joyce to Rebecca West advanced their literary traditions. Hadean Lands is a milestone. No, it’s not Joyce—Plotkin doesn’t quite have the writing chops—but I did enjoy it more than T. S. Eliot.

New Traffic Apps May Be Pushing Cars Into Residential Areas

Laura J. Nelson, Los Angeles Times:

Many commuters say that Waze has made driving a more pleasant and serendipitous experience. But residents along once-quiet streets that parallel Los Angeles County's freeways have begun to complain that commuters dodging sluggish morning traffic are zipping through their neighborhoods, veering around corners and rolling through stop signs. And some of the worst of the traffic, they say, is being diverted to streets that are too small to be commuting conduits.

Hit List: Album View

Dan Moren, Six Colors:

Me, I’ve got no problems with albums. I listen to them pretty frequently, especially in more recent years. But not once in the many years of using an iOS device have I ever played back an album from that stupid horizontal screen. Why? Have you ever tried to find something in that view?

Crash Report By Hand

18 Conferences for Mac and iOS Professionals in 2015

Adam C. Engst, TidBITS:

Historically, Macworld Expo would be receding in the rearview mirror about now, but honestly, early January was a terrible time for a conference, between winter travel and proximity to the holidays. But with Macworld Expo no more, those of us who earn our livings within Apple’s orbit will have to get our conference fixes from smaller, more intimate gatherings. Luckily, there’s no lack of independent conferences both before and after Apple’s WWDC, which usually takes place in June and has far fewer slots than developers who would like to attend.

Stuff for your Computers

The most important reason to use Notability is how it feels as you write in it.

  • DropZone 3 (For Mac) (William Fenton, PC Magazine)

DropZone catapults drag and drop into the twenty-first century with one-stop-shop access to files and applications, timesaving actions, and effortless menu bar access.

  • SimCity Complete Edition Fully Constructed in the Mac App Store (Simon Sage, iMore)
  • Hands On: Djay Pro (MacNN)
  • Amazon Releases [Kindle Textbook Creator for Mac], A Cross-Platform iBooks Author Competitor (Zac Hall, 9to5Mac)
  • Logitech Keys to Go Review: Mechanical Keyboard for iPad & iPhone (Josh SMith, GottaBeMobile)
  • 'Dungeons Of Chaos' Review - A Retro-Style CRPG With All That Implies (Shaun Musgrave, TouchArcade)

Google Drops Three OS X 0days On Apple

Dan Goodin, Ars Technica:

At first glance, none of them appear to be highly critical, since all three appear to require the attacker to already have some access to a targeted machine. What's more, the first vulnerability, the one involving the "networkd 'effective_audit_token' XPC," may already have been mitigated in OS X Yosemite, but if so the Google advisory doesn't make this explicit and Apple doesn't publicly discuss security matters with reporters.


The first exploit, which could result in privilege escalation, was marked as fixed and closed by Project Zero on January 8. Based on the latest build of OS X 10.10.2, seeded yesterday to developers, Apple has also already fixed both of the remaining vulnerabilities.

When It Comes to Security, Who Can You Trust?

Glenn Fleishman, Macworld:

To trust Cloak or a similar company, we have to believe that it lacks the motivation to engage in theft and possesses the competence to configure its systems well and keep them up to date. The test of both of these is often time: we need to know how they perform longitudinally and when faced with threats.

Short Notes

  • Apple CEO Tim Cook Made $9.2 Million in 2014 As New Retail Chief & Other Execs Increase Earnings (Jordan Kahn, 9to5Mac)
  • Apple Paid Former Burberry Boss $73 Million to Become Its Retail Chief (Dawn Chmielewski, Re/code)

Apple also notes that Ahrendts was among the highest-paid executives in the U.K. When she decided to leave her job at the luxury retailer, she left unvested stock awards worth approximately $37 million (as well as cash and perquisites that exceeded $5 million a year).

  • Apple Director Millard Drexler to Retire, Replacement Yet to be Named (Mark Gurman, 9to5Mac)
  • Apple Details HomeKit Compatibility With Competing Home Automation Platforms, Rules Out Rival Wi-Fi Gear (Jordan Kahn, 9to5Mac)

Parting Words

Thanks for reading.