The iCloud-Encryption Edition Wednesday, March 16, 2016

In Beefing Up iCloud Security, Apple Weighs Privacy Against Convenience, by Daisuke Wakabayashi, Wall Street Journal

Apple is working to bolster its encryption so that it won’t be able to decode user information stored in iCloud, according to people familiar with the matter.

But Apple executives are wrestling with how to strengthen iCloud encryption without inconveniencing users. Apple prides itself on creating intuitive, easy-to-use software, and some in the company worry about adding complexity.

The Room Where It Happened: How Silicon Valley (Mostly) Lined Up Behind Apple, by Dawn Chmielewski and Arik HEsseldahl, Re/code

“Everybody sort of initially saw this as a standard FBI request that went public,” said Box Chief Executive Aaron Levie. “Then, once you saw how Apple responded, you recognized the gravity of the situation and what the FBI was asking Apple to do.”

Silicon Valley began lining up.

More Music

Apple Music, Dubset Partner To Stream Previously Unlicensed Remixes And DJ Mixes: Exclusive, by Glenn Peoples, Billboard

Dubset Media Holdings has announced a partnership that will allow Apple Music to stream remixes and DJ mixes that had previous been absent from licensed services due to copyright issues. Thousands upon thousands cool mash-ups and hour-long mixes have effectively been pulled out of the underground and placed onto the world’s second-largest music subscription service.

Foreign Lands

Apple Tells EU Tax Panel It `Pays Every Cent' Due In Ireland, by Stephanie Bodoni, Bloomberg

Apple Inc., facing a European Union probe into its fiscal affairs in Ireland, told a panel of EU lawmakers Tuesday it pays all taxes due in the nation and doesn’t get an unfair advantage compared with other companies there.

Apple Would Like To Make This Perfectly Clear: It’s Not Making ‘Accommodations’ To China, by Dawn Chmielewski, Re/code

“Contrary to the government’s misleading statistics, which had to do with lawful process and did not compel the creation of software that undermines the security of its users, Apple has never built a back door of any kind into iOS, or otherwise made data stored on the iPhone or in iCloud more technically accessible to any country’s government,” Apple writes in a filing Tuesday with federal court.


2Remember Offers A Reminder Alternative To OS X's Built-in Options, by Dennis Sellers, Apple World Today

The Tropical Software utility only takes up a tiny (semi-transparent) space on your screen, but offers various options for to-do's, including flashing icon on dock, flashing tab red, alert and sound. It hides just off-screen as soon as any other app opens, but reappears when you move your mouse over the tab.


The Deep Roots Of Javascript Fatigue, by Calvin French-Owen, Segment

The most interesting thing about having a language where everyone is comfortable with build tools, transpilers, and syntax additions is that the language can advance at an astonishing rate. Really the only thing holding back new language features is consensus. As quickly as people agree and implement the spec, there’s code to support it.

It makes me wonder whether there will ever be another language like Javascript. It’s such a unique environment, where the implementations in the wild lag so far behind the spec, that it just invites new specs as quickly as the community can think of them. Some of them even become first-class citizens, and are adopted by browsers.


Instagram May Change Your Feed, Personalizing It With An Algorithm, by Mike Isaac, New York Times

The photo-sharing service plans to begin testing an algorithm-based personalized feed for users, similar to one already used by its parent company, Facebook. That means it would shift away from the strictly reverse chronological order that the service has used since it began in 2010. Instead, Instagram will place the photos and videos it thinks you will most want to see from the people you follow toward the top of your feed, regardless of the time those posts were originally shared.

At SXSW, A Shift From Apps To Innovation, by Farhad Manjoo, New York Times

This year SXSW, as the festival is known, feels like a story of how the tech ethos has escaped the bounds of hardware and software. Tech is turning into a culture and a style, one that has spread into new foods and clothing, and all other kinds of nonelectronic goods. Tech has become a lifestyle brand.

Bottom of the Page

I am weary of things that try to be smart, but are not actually smart enough. For such things, I would rather them to be dumb.

I wish Instagram well, but you may be losing me if you are not doing this smart-sorting thing right.


Thanks for reading.