I’ve been hearing a fair bit lately about how amazing Google Photos is at intelligently identifying the subjects of photos. On numerous podcasts I’ve heard about people searching for “hugs” and “dogs” and “patios” and getting “astonishing” results. So I thought I’d give it a go.
Marco Arment wrote about it. Friends Scott Willsey, and Allison Sheridan have written about it. I’ve lost count of the number of podcasts I’ve listened to in the last while that have discussed it. Apple’s software is not living up to fairly basic expectations – that it do what it says on the box. Every time.
Mostly I’ve tended to think “yeah, they have a point, but it’s not so bad as I see it.” Today I’m writing this blog post because it is bad as I see it and it’s getting beyond being simply disappointing.
I’ve seen many internet “explosions” where large numbers of denizens have set about cutting down someone for a controversial action. In New Zealand we call this tall poppy syndrome. I’m certainly guilty of lashing out at times, too, when an action is particularly egregious in my eyes or affects me more directly, but as much as I can I seek to remain objective. In the last year or two, however, I’ve taken a slightly different approach.
You’ve got mail. I’ve got mail. We’ve all got mail. Specifically, email.
On previous incarnations of this blog I’ve written multiple times about my frustrations with modern email software and this is yet another occasion. I’ve had a startling change of heart in the last week and I thought it was time, once again, to air my grievances and this time explain why I’ve gone back into a fold I swore I’d leave behind forever.
I was recently taking part in a discussion about the relative merits of different software packages in a photography forum when one of the other Mac users said he managed his images in Aperture (for now) and then manually moved selected photos to the new Photos app for sharing.
Given Aperture is on death row, I have long since moved to Lightroom and I wondered whether I could automate the moving of selected images from Lightroom to Photos. It only took me 10 minutes and one extra piece of software.
TV3’s current affairs/magazine program Story tonight aired yet another piece about pedestrians walking around distracted by mobile phones. Leaving aside the fact that someone walking around in a furry suit is hardly a reason for attention in Wellington, once again, the focus was on the wrong side of the equation.
I was listening to Accidental Tech Podcast (ATP) episode 158 on my commute home and was not in the least surprised that the Apple vs FBI topic came up, nor by how the hosts covered it with their usual deep thinking.
But what did surprise me was a monologue by John Siracusa which, I think, really hit at the biggest, most important point of this debate. The point being that it isn’t just about this single debate, but something far, far bigger.
Local journalist Heather du Plessis-Allan often writes thoughtful pieces in her New Zealand Herald column and sometimes, like me, she pokes at the fallacies of the topic, rather than coming down on one side or other of the debate. Today was such a day when she penned a piece about the recent TPPA protests in Auckland.