Summary of “How Silicon Valley Kowtows To China”

Why do CEOs such as Cook, and Google’s Sundar Pichai, attend these types of events? What is the impact of their participation in and statements at these events likely to be? How much influence do these large companies have over China’s internet regulation and what do they stand to gain or lose by publicly supporting internet freedom? -The ChinaFile Editors.
Shaun Rein, founder and managing director of the China Market Research GroupChina employs the power of its wallet-both the State’s and the consumer’s wallet combined together-to reward brands that heed the wants of China politically, while using this same power to punish countries and, increasingly, companies that go against China’s wants politically.
The rewards China bestows on the these foreign internet companies can be huge-China is Apple’s largest market outside of the United States.
Zeng Jinyan, writer, scholar, activist, and documentary filmmakerAt the 4th World Internet Conference, Apple CEO Tim Cook defended Apple’s removal of VPN apps from the app store in China, saying that China should not be criticized.
Chinese long have known that Apple products sold inside China are not the company’s authentic advanced technology.
Apple products sold in China are modified to suit the Chinese government rather than Chinese consumers.
Chen Weihua, chief Washington correspondent for China Daily and the deputy editor of China Daily USA. This is not a new debate at all.
I want to repeat my argument in the Google case in 2010: If you want to help change China for the better, you should involve China in your work and be there on the ground.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Jony Ive Dishes On Apple Rumors And His Design Team In Rare Interview”

The topics covered ranged from how Apple really designs its next iPhone to what it’s like building the future while the blogosphere shares Apple rumors and rants.
Apple is the most valuable company in the world, but Ive has kept his design team small.
The industrial design team still numbers just 20 in all.
That’s the point that’s so important you get to as a team.
So just what is that small design team doing that makes it so successful? It’s entirely a matter of process, Ive insists, built upon multi-decade relationships of respect and trust.
Criticisms have come from all angles on Apple’s new $5 billion “Spaceship.” The most notable, to me, was by the original Googleplex designer Clive Wilkinson, who questioned whether Apple could really conceive of the practicalities of working inside a 2.9 million-square-foot ring.
Ive drew a line on this topic, for the first and only time in the interview, insisting that it was a scenario where Apple knew best.
Ive points out that the new building will allow the entire design team-not just the smaller industrial design arm-to be unified for the first time in Apple’s recent history.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Apple’s had a shockingly bad week of software problems”

As the week draws to a close, it’s definitely been a long one for Apple’s software engineers.
As software bugs go, this one was embarrassing and critical, but Apple managed to fix it less than 24 hours after it was publicly disclosed.
That seemed to be an embarrassing end to the problems, but late last night reports emerged that Apple’s rushed software patch could be just as buggy as the code it was supposed to fix.
It’s hard to say whether Apple has been particularly sloppy recently with its software updates, or whether this is a growing trend in software in general.
Either way, this latest week of problems does highlight Apple’s challenge to meet the needs of its customers on a wide scale.
Apple now has more than 1 billion devices running iOS, and any security flaws or problems impact millions of people on a much larger scale than macOS has ever experienced.
Thankfully, Apple is able to patch these devices regularly and provides software updates even to older phones and tablets – something we rarely see on Android devices.
Apple is now facing the challenging prospect of auditing its development processes to ensure this kind of messy week never happens again.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Apple is sharing your face with apps. That’s a new privacy worry.”

Apple just started sharing your face with lots of apps.
I also think Apple rushed into sharing face maps with app makers that may not share its commitment, and it isn’t being paranoid enough about the minefield it just entered.
Apple’s rules say developers can’t sell face data, use it to identify anonymous people or use it for advertising.
The MeasureKit app’s maker told me he wasn’t sensing much extra scrutiny from Apple for accessing face data.
Apps are supposed to make clear why they’re accessing your face and seek “Conspicuous consent,” according to Apple’s policies.
Overwhelming people with notifications and choices is a concern, but the face seems like a sufficiently new and sensitive data source that it warrants special permission.
Facial detection can, of course, be used for good and for bad. Warby Parker, the online glasses purveyor, uses it to fit frames to faces, and a Snapchat demo uses it to virtually paint on your face.
What keeps privacy advocates up at night is that the iPhone X will make face scanning seem normal.

The orginal article.

Summary of “A Notch Above”

Including the rather lackluster iPhone 8 - for about a month there, it was the best iPhone ever made.
If you can afford it - and I know that’s a big if for a lot of folks - I would definitely recommend this iPhone above all others.
In a way, the design of the iPhone X actually reminds me of the old iPod Video mockups that circulated back in the day, imagining what an iPod that could play video might look like - an iPod that can play video? Imagine that! The edge-to-edge screen is wonderful and does allow for a feel that’s more similar in size to the iPhone non-Plus models versus the iPhone Plus models.
In the much more minor complaints department, I’ve noticed that if you use a case with the iPhone X, quite a bit of dust/debris gathers in the general area of the notch.
It’s entirely possible I’m just noticing this more than with previous iPhones because of the notch itself.
As with the iPhones 8, the iPhone X has none of the regulatory mumbo-jumbo on the back of the device.
Lastly, I’ll just say that whereas I had some issues with lag and hangs on the iPhone 8, the iPhone X has no such issues.
The best iPhone yet, and not just in the way that every new iPhone is the best iPhone yet.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Jony Ive on Apple Park and his unique, minimalist W* cover”

This was the first up-close mass sighting of the most talked-about new building in the world, a $5bn, or so it’s said, Foster + Partners-designed loop of glass, aluminium, limestone and concrete and Apple’s new HQ. Guests worked their way up an artificial hill, part of 175 acres of undulating new landscape where once was dead-flat parking facility and dull corporate sheds, most of it owned by Hewlett-Packard.
This engineered topography, a fantasy of California, gentle and abundant, was borne of the earth removed to make way for the new building’s earthquake-proof foundations, and has been planted with 9,000 trees, including cherry, apricot, apple, persimmon and pear.
All those trees, as was the intention, mean that the 2.8 million sq ft new building never fully reveals itself.
The keynote is taking place in the new Steve Jobs Theater, itself a small marvel of engineering, ingenuity and attention to detail.
‘If the overall project is a small town, then this is the town hall, and jewel,’ says Stefan Behling, a Foster + Partners partner and one of the lead architects on Apple Park.
‘In the beginning there was just this idea: “Let’s have a hovering roof”, just this sliver of roof floating in the landscape,’ says Behling.
‘It’s the biggest carbon-fibre roof of its kind in the world.
That does mean doing something that has never been done before.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Apple, Google, and the chase for tech that can’t be reverse-engineered”

In simple terms, machine learning promises to be the holy grail for giant tech companies that want to scale peaks that smaller rivals can’t reach.
Google’s HDR+ camera Let’s start with the most impressive expression of machine learning consumer tech to date: the camera on Google’s Pixel and Pixel 2 phones.
Even if Google had done nothing whatsoever to improve the Pixel camera in the time between the Pixel and Pixel 2’s launch, the simple accumulation of machine learning time will have made the camera better.
Google’s Assistant At CES in January this year, Huawei’s mobile boss Richard Yu was asked if his company would introduce its own voice assistant in the US, to which he replied, “Alexa and Google Assistant are better, how can we compete?” That uncharacteristically pragmatic response neatly encapsulates the difficulty of copying Google and Amazon’s machine learning efforts.
The Assistant serves as a conduit for funneling users into Google search and the rest of the company’s services, with practically all of them benefiting from some variety of machine learning, whether you’re thinking of Google Maps tips or YouTube video suggestions.
Huawei’s AI chips and Samsung’s Bixby disaster Outside of Apple and Google, Huawei has been the biggest proponent of implementing machine learning and AI in mobile devices.
Huawei is moving in the right direction with this AI push unlike Apple and Google – both of which have turned machine learning into tangible, obvious and user-facing features – Huawei’s approach is to dig into the far less marketable sphere of using machine learning to optimize Android performance over the course of long-term use.
Bixby is what Google Assistant might have been if a company decided to rush it into production devices with inadequate planning, preparation, or time to accumulate a useful amount of data and machine learning knowhow.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Apple Is Ramping Up Work on AR Headset to Succeed iPhone”

Apple Inc., seeking a breakthrough product to succeed the iPhone, aims to have technology ready for an augmented-reality headset in 2019 and could ship a product as early as 2020.
As with previous products, Apple isn’t waiting around for someone else to create a chip capable of powering its AR headset.
Just as tvOS powers the Apple TV, macOS runs on Macs and watchOS runs on Apple Watches, “rOS” will power Apple’s AR headset.
Apple hasn’t finalized how users will control the headset and launch apps, but is investigating touch panels, voice-activation via Siri and head gestures.
The company has discussed pairing the headset with its own version of the App Store, where users would be able to download content, just as they do with the iPhone, Watch, Apple TV and Mac.
Because Apple doesn’t have a fully operational headset of its own, engineers have begun using HTC Vive headsets for testing purposes.
Apple doesn’t plan to sell the gadget but instead aims to use it internally to test AR apps next year.
With the headset at least two years away, Apple wants to make it easier for developers to bring new AR features to the iPhone.

The orginal article.

Summary of “How Apple built the iPhone X”

Sure, the company released three phones this fall, and like a parent who insists they love all of their children equally, Apple claims that the iPhone 8, 8 Plus, and iPhone X are each unique and special in their own way.
Mashable recently sat down with Schiller and other senior members of Apple’s executive team including SVP of software engineering Craig Federighi, SVP hardware engineering Dan Riccio, and VP of user interface design Alan Dye for a wide-ranging discussion about how they built what is perhaps the most eagerly-anticipated smartphone since Apple’s founder Steve Jobs unveiled the original iPhone more than a decade ago.
Like virtually all other Apple products, the iPhone X was born out of a collaborative, cross-departmental process.
The Apple executives also revealed for the first time just how difficult it was for them to remove the home button, and why they don’t think “The notch,” where the iPhone X’s TrueDepth imaging module resides, is that big of a deal.
Perhaps it’s no secret that Apple wanted to do away with buttons and even the “Head” and “Chin” – mostly dead-space on the iPhone – but the Apple executives offered some fascinating insight into why this is happening now and how Apple identified the moment when all the necessary technologies percolating for years were ready to make an all-screen iPhone possible.
Apple’s continuing pride in the home button was clear to me as Schiller described how hard they worked on it and how, over each iPhone generation, it has changed, becoming more powerful, and, when they added Touch ID, critical to the iPhone operation and security.
Federighi said Apple is taking advantage of attention detection and managing how often the iPhone X looks back at you.
There isn’t even a custom version of iOS 11 for the iPhone X. Instead, Apple engineered the underlying the mechanics of how UI operates and the engine behind it to support both iPhone X and the traditional iPhone experience.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Improbable Origins of PowerPoint”

PowerPoint was not the first software for creating presentations on personal computers.
At the time, commentators saw the proliferation of business software as a new phase in office automation, in which computer use was spreading beyond the accounting department and the typing pool to the office elites.
PowerPoint thus emerged during a period in which personal computing was taking over the American office.
Many of the bright young computer scientists and engineers recruited to work at PARC knew one another from the major computer science programs funded by the Department of Defense’s Advanced Research Projects Agency at MIT, Carnegie Mellon, Stanford, UC Berkeley, the University of Utah, and SRI. In 1972, PARC researchers began to focus on a new personal computer they called the Alto.
These computers would be networked to one another and to other, larger computers, both locally and far away.
The Alto’s creators emphasized the machine’s graphics capabilities, dedicating much of the computer’s hardware and software to rendering high-⁠resolution imagery onscreen, including typography, drawings, digital photographs, and animations.
Work on Foundation was set aside, while the firm focused on software publishing-that is, manufacturing, marketing, and supporting computer programs written by others.
David C. Brock is a historian of technology and director of the Center for Software History at the Computer History Museum, in Mountain View, Calif..

The orginal article.