Despite the fact I have used Apple computers since the Apple IIe, I am not an Apple Fanboy. I'm just one of the people for whom that environment and model make sense, so I use it. (I have also worked solely on Unix machines, Windows machines, and dedicated OS devices like the Palm Pilots, various oscilloscopes, and command-line interfaces to industrial machines.)

For the majority of my life, Apple has been on their deathbed, or just made the dumbest move in the world, or have clearly turned the corner and are going downhill, or ... name the epithet/doom scenario.

And over the last few years, I have been a nay-sayer as well. Air Pods? No headphone jack? Touch Bar? They have all made me grumpy and abusive towards the company... and then I've been won over by the amazing user experience.

Now, with my iPhone Xs, I unlock it with my face. Literally. If you haven't done it yourself, when you turn on face recognition you look at your phone and move it around your head, left to right, up and down, and it maps your face in some mysterious way.

Once it has "read" your face, all you need to do to unlock it is hold it up an look at it. Boop! It unlocks almost instantly.

Big whoop. Right?

Well, check this...

It works with my glasses on, or off.

It works with my OTHER glasses. (Prescription sunglasses.)

It works with hats, caps, and beanies that cover my forehead down to my eyebrows.

It works with my beard long and shaggy, or short(ish) and trimmed.

It works looking "up my nose" at an unattractive angle, while laying on my side in bed, when laying on my back, or while looking up at it over my head while I'm standing.

It works in total darkness, and bright sun.

It has never unlocked for anyone else, using their face.

THAT, to me, is kinda fucking magic.

And, yet again, Apple has proven my grumpy curmudgeonly self wrong. They really do know what they are doing. And they really do create an amazing user experience.


In the exact opposite side of phone amazement, I just bought a Nokia 6 for $130 dollars.

It's been reviewed as having the sturdiest build around, which is something I need. I've destroyed more than a few phones. It's real close to stock android, it's fast enough, the camera is good enough, I have no objection to the screen.

It's last years model and as much phone as I could possibly need.

I have not a hint of fetish with my phone. Any "relationship" I have with my phone is purely utilitarian. It's fucking awesome that I can buy such a powerful mobile computer/communications device for so little money.

I don't begrudge anyone buying a top of the line, my wife buys upmarket but I'm amazed at how good a phone I just purchased on the cheap.

posted by goobster: 240 days ago