The Exchange-Rate-Pressures Edition Tuesday, February 2, 2016

What Are Currency Effects And Why Are They Eating Tech Companies’ Earnings?, by Noah Kulwin, Re/code

If you’ve been paying attention to the earnings reports from Apple, Microsoft, Facebook and virtually every major tech firm, “currency effects” are a common refrain for why revenue might not be as strong as it otherwise would be. For example, Tim Cook said that Apple lost $5 billion in revenue because of exchange rate pressures.

The explanation for why a strong dollar is bad for earnings is pretty simple: If you make money internationally, you’re going to lose some value in your sales when you reprice your earnings in dollars. Then again, tech companies don’t say that they have “inflated” profits when the dollar is weak.

Falling Down

Facebook Hired Me At 18. But My Story Isn’t As Perfect As It Sounds., by Michael Sayman, MTV

I have the opportunity to share the imperfect story. To share what it's like to succeed in a world where everything is falling down around you.


Two Issues With iCloud Photo Sharing, by Glenn Fleishman, Macworld

Copy Files Back Into A Photos For Mac Library, by Jason Snell, Six Colors

The Sun Never Sets On The Times: How And Why The British Paper Built Its New Weekly International App, by Joseph Lichterman, Nieman Lab

“We’re pursuing the idea of editions everywhere,” Petrie said. “An edition is something that can be finished. When you’ve read it, you feel up-to-date; you’ve been told what you need to know for the day or the week. The weekly app takes that idea as well. This idea will appear in more and more of our products as time goes on because it’s resonated so well with our readership.”

Adobe Voice 2.0 Review: Presentation App For iPhone Delivers Sophisticated Animated Videos, by Jackie Dove, Macworld

The newly released universal iOS app guides you through each step of creating a unique and appealing animated video presentation, complete with audio-visual elements, images, icons, and critically, your own voice.

Zapier Launches Multi-Step Zaps For Richer Web Automation, by Federico Viticci, MacStories

Today, Zapier – the power-user (and paid) alternative to IFTTT – is launching multi-step zaps (the equivalent of recipes in IFTTT), which I was able to test for the past week. I've long preferred Zapier to IFTTT for the additional controls that it offers when building complex web automations. Zapier lets you assign filters to actions, you can parse data from email messages with a dedicated Zapier Parser service, and, generally speaking, everything is built with an eye for people who, like me, want to tweak as much as possible. Multi-step zaps fit squarely into this strategy and they're, by far, the most powerful solution I've tried to chain multiple web services together and save time.

Password Management App Enpass Goes 5.0 With New Design And Features, by Aldrin Calimlim, AppAdvice

One of these is integration with Spotlight, allowing you to search items in your Enpass keychain right from the home screen of your iOS device. Just go to the leftmost page of the home screen or simply swipe down on the home screen to access the Spotlight search bar. Type your search keywords and tap on your desired search result to see the details of the corresponding item in Enpass.


Apple's Swift Language Project Gains Continuous Integration, by Roger Fingas, AppleInsider

Apple on Monday officially launched continuous integration for Swift, enabling checks on the project's health, and integrated testing within pull requests before any commits are made.

The Joy Of Shortcuts, by Allen Pike

Our industry, the software industry, builds things that are so ephemeral, so fragile. Sometimes software grows, it changes, and it has a long life. Other times it doesn’t, and it’s swept away. Either way, though, these minor calamities help us sort out what kind of things we want to build. Do you want to build bold experiments, take shortcuts, and see where your customers take you? Or do you want to build solid foundations, sturdily engineered, and hunker down for the long haul?

Swifty Configuration For iOS, by Chester Twomey, Coding Velocity

For the last several months I've had the opportunity to jump head first into Swift development for iOS. Something I immediately noticed was how cumbersome it felt to configure an application for multiple environments. Some solutions I found required including different .plist files based on environment you were deploying to. This required that you duplicate configuration if a property was different in only 1 environment (ie analytics). Another form of configuration was conditional compilation, I didn't really like this either as it was more restrictive than objective c's conditional compilation. I have quite a bit of experience with Java Spring webapps and have come to admire Java configuration as a convenient way to contain configuration. So armed with this I attempted the same in Swift.


Apple Urges FCC To Recognize Made For iPhone Hearing Aids, by Serhat Kurt, MacReports

Apple’s recent filling with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) shows that the company is urging the FCC should “recognize solutions such as the MFi hearing aid platform as alternatives for hearing aid compatibility compliance”. The FCC file shows that Apple argues that iPhone complies with FCC’s current HAC rules, and MFI should be recognized as an alternative for hearing aid compatibility compliance.

Evernote Will Shut Down Market, Its E-Commerce Effort, On Wednesday, by Ingrid Lunden, TechCrunch

Some more news from Evernote — the note-taking app and startup of the same name — that speaks to the company’s current rough patch: today it announced that as of Wednesday at 6pm Pacific, it will shutter Market, the e-commerce platform where it sold Evernote swag and Evernote-integrated office products, in an attempt to create another revenue stream around its more dedicated users.

The Augmented-Reality Enterprise Opportunity, by Tom Mainelli, Re/code

Just like the typewriter gave way to the personal computer, for some workers an AR device will replace the sometimes awkward use of a notebook, tablet or smartphone.

Bottom of the Page

I think I have successfully moved my to-do system out of Evernote into Todoist.

Next: to figure out whether I want to move all my note-taking to somewhere else.


Thanks for reading.