Hey Siri, Set the HomePod’s Volume

March 16, 2018 · 13:04

I discovered an interesting tidbit regarding setting the HomePod’s volume:

  1. The buttons on top of the HomePod change the volume in 5% increments on each tap.
  2. The voice command “Hey Siri, louder / quieter”, “Hey Siri, increase / decrease the volume”, etc. changes the volume in 10% increments.

Also, Siri really shouldn’t need to hear the “Hey” in “Hey Siri” every single time I need something from her.

“Siri, just do it.”


So… I Got a HomePod

March 9, 2018 · 17:36

I said I wouldn’t get the iPhone X, but I did. That was an exception since the deal I got on it was too good to pass up and I ended up paying less than for a new iPhone 8. I did not expect to get as good a deal on the HomePod. To be quite frank, it wasn’t even close percentage-wise to the aforementioned one, but I still went for it, figuring I could sell it on if didn’t satisfy my needs.

It hasn’t blown me away so far, but it’s only been an hour or so, so here’s keeping my fingers crossed.


Using a Raspberry Pi Zero W to Add a Camera and a Xiaomi Air Purifier 2 to HomeKit via Homebridge

March 1, 2018 · 15:04

I recently purchased a Xiaomi Air Purifier 2, to avoid having dirty air in my apartment. Unfortunately, this product does not integrate with HomeKit. I am generally averse to having my “connected” home accessible from the internet, but I did want to use the HomeKit automation features. Setting this whole thing up just for one air purifier did seem like a lot of hassle, until I found out (from Steven Troughton-Smith) that you can get a Raspberry Pi Zero W with a camera module, which also works under HomeKit. Two-in-one? No need to ask me twice.

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iPhone 8 Code Name and Image Found in Homepod Firmware

July 31, 2017 · 08:39

Steven did a little sleuthing over the weekend, poking around the HomePod firmware…

Pearl ID and BiometricKit found, but still no word whether the iPhone 8/Pro (or whatever else Apple will call it) will have Touch ID along facial recognition.

Guilherme Rambo‏ also found an image representing the new iPhone, which Steven confirmed, along with its D22 code name.


Someone at Apple is going to have an angry phone call today…


iPod Nano and Shuffle Removed from Apple.com

July 27, 2017 · 22:23

Sadly, the iPod Nano and Shuffle were both removed from Apple.com. The iPod brand still lives on, in the form of the iPod touch in 32 GB and 128 GB flavours. I kept hoping Apple would release an iPod Nano with Apple Music support in some form, even if it didn’t have a modem — it appears that those dreams won’t come true.


My Mac, Hackintosh, and iOS Setup →

April 24, 2017 · 21:11

Jeffrey Abbott, on The Sweet Setup:

Every week we post a new interview with someone about what software they use on their Mac, iPhone, or iPad. We do these interviews because not only are they fun, but a glimpse into what tools someone uses and how they use those tools can spark our imagination and give us an idea or insight into how we can do things better.

My Mac and iOS setup is up today, with detailed specs of my Hackintosh! Yay!


The Magic of AirPods

February 22, 2017 · 14:23

The new AirPods perfectly encapsulate the magical experience that only Apple is capable of creating. Open the case in which they are stored1 — a pop-up appears on your iPhone, asking if you’d like to pair them. Do it again, anytime in the future — you can quickly check your battery status. Play some music on your iPad2 — hear it in your AirPods, despite not having paired them with that device. Mac? Same thing.

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  1. It doubles as a charger with a built-in power bank.
  2. It has to be signed in to the same Apple ID.

Thoughts on The New Kindle Oasis

April 15, 2016 · 22:24

I bought my first Kindle in 2011. It was the model with side mounted buttons to flip pages, a non-lit screen, and I loved it1. Not because it was a good device, but because it allowed me to carry so many of my books with me, read them fairly comfortably, and I wasn’t worried about destroying it — it was cheap enough that should anything happen to it, I would just go get a new one. Five years later, the latter has changed quite a bit.

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  1. It’s either a Kindle 4 or Kindle Classic, depending on who you ask, and I got it just before the Paperwhite came out. Figures.

Thoughts on iPhone SE, iPad Pro 9.7”, and Apple’s March 2016 ‘Let Us Loop You in’ Event

March 26, 2016 · 10:15

A lot of people are not pleased with the fact that Apple ‘only’ unveiled a new 4” iPhone, another iPad, and a few Apple Watch bands. Personally, I don’t have anything negative to say about the hardware, but what I really miss is the surprise. The leaks in the weeks before any Apple event in recent years are both a blessing and a curse — while I can’t stop myself from following the rumours, they totally spoil the event. It’s as if I’d gone to see ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ on opening night, knowing the whole plot. In 2012, during D10, Tim Cook promised Kara Swisher and Walk Mossberg to ‘double down on secrecy’ — I’m still waiting for him to deliver.
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The New Fuji X-Pro2 and Why It Will Probably Be My Next Camera

January 20, 2016 · 14:09

I was a Nikon D700 user until recently, having made the switch from Canon in 2009. There were multiple reasons for this. At the time, the D700 was a much better full frame camera than the 5D. The former was basically a smaller pro body with a few features cut to lower the price, while the latter was a Canon 20D with a large sensor. Everything about the D700 was better, including the glass that I was lusting for. My main reason for making the switch was the Nikkor 14-24 f/2.8G — a zoom lens sharper than many primes. I sold (still selling the lenses) my whole kit recently and switched to my Fuji X100T, which my wife got us a few months ago.

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The iPad Pro Smart Keyboard vs. The Microsoft Surface Pro 4 Type Cover

December 25, 2015 · 17:16

I’ve wanted to write about so many things during these past few weeks, but I never could find the time to get into them. One of those on hold have been my thoughts and first impressions of the Surface Pro 4, which I had on loan for a few weeks. It coincided with the time when I bought my iPad Pro. A few of the more interesting aspects of the two are the keyboards, hardware design and ergonomics of Apple’s and Microsoft’s products.

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Did Tim Cook, Phil Schiller or Someone at Apple Accelerate My Order?

December 23, 2015 · 13:15

I just picked up my iPad Pro Smart Keyboard from TNT and since I need to write something to test it out, I chose to speculate a little. You see, while the Smart Keyboard was available in the EU, the Polish Apple Online Store said it would be ‘coming soon’. I already had my iPad Pro at the time, miraculously managed to snag an Apple Pencil, but couldn’t get my hands on the most important accessory, especially since I was wondering if the Pro would replace most or all of my MacBook needs. I wrote a post directed at Tim Cook and Phil Schiller at the time, keeping my fingers crossed…

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