ldstephens

MacRumors

Starting today, developers can now advertise their apps in the App Store’s main Today tab and in a “You Might Also Like” section at the bottom of individual app listings in all countries except China. Ads are already beginning to appear in these places, and as usual, the ads have a blue background and an “Ad” icon so they can be identified.

​[…]

And with the “You Might Also Like” section, developers are now able to promote their apps at the bottom of other apps’ pages.In a tweet, legal expert Florian Mueller argued the “You Might Also Like” ads are “another means of increasing the effective app tax rate, forcing developers to buy ads on their own app pages in order to avoid that others steer customers away from there.”

Look, I think what Apple is doing here is total bullshit. We pay a lot of money to use Apple products. Why should we have to see ads so they can make more money? The ads in Apple News are so obnoxious that I refuse to use the app. And what about the fucking ads I see every time I search for something in the App Store.

And Apple allowing ads in “You Might Also Like” at the bottom of another app's page is just flat-out wrong.

In the end, I guess we don’t have a choice, but it sure pisses me off!

#Opinion #Apple #iPhone

If you installed iPadOS 16 today or plan to in the next few days you'll want to watch this video by Christopher Lawley to learn everything new.

Christopher Lawley, iPadOS 16 Walkthrough: EVERYTHING You Need To Know! – YouTube

#iPad #HowTo #Linked

I use Drafts for clipboard management on iOS and iPadOS. I find this works just as well, if not better, than iOS specific clipboard manager apps. Another advantage to doing this is that my clippings are available on all my devices with Drafts. I like that I can merge my clippings and take action on them right in the app.

What I hadn't thought of was also using Drafts for snippets on iOS and iPadOS until I ran across this post by Greg Pierce. TIP: Using Drafts as a Text Snippet Library

In this article, we are going to step through the setup of a series of tools that allow you to use Drafts as a repository of reusable text snippets. Whether it’s canned responses you use in email or fun emoticons for social media, Drafts can be a great place to maintain and access text snippets.

In the process, we’ll touch on how to use a number of Drafts’ features together to create complete workflows. Even if you are not sure you need a snippet repository, you might pick up a few things about workspaces, actions, and other Drafts tools that you can use in other applications.

I set this up as outlined in the post and it works great.

#HowTo #Drafts #Apps #Productivity

The Washington Post, Stop iPhones from spying on kids with this new app

A frightening number of kids’ apps are spying on them. Now parents can get some help to stop it.

A new app called Do Not Track Kids acts like a privacy shield for iPhones and iPads used by children. For $5 per month, it runs in the background of the device to block the companies that harvest personal information from children (and grown-ups too). It also contains cartoon lessons to teach kids about online privacy.

Do Not Track Kids was made by a dad who knows a thing or two about digital snoops: former National Security Agency researcher Patrick Jackson. Today, Jackson is the chief technology officer of Disconnect, a company that also makes privacy software used to power tracking prevention in web browsers including Mozilla’s Firefox and Microsoft’s Edge.

​[…]

Do Not Track Kids works by hooking into a part of the iPhone’s operating system and literally stopping the connections apps, websites and emails make to ad companies and data brokers.

Do Not Track Kids, recently launched in the Apple App Store. My kids are adults but for those with kids at home, this app is worth checking out. ​ #iPhone #Apps #Privacy

Wall Street Journal

Meta initially set a goal of reaching 500,000 monthly active users for Horizon Worlds by the end of this year, but in recent weeks revised that figure to 280,000. The current tally is less than 200,000, the documents show.

Most visitors to Horizon generally don’t return to the app after the first month, and the user base has steadily declined since the spring, according to the documents, which include internal memos from employees.

By comparison, Meta’s social-media products, including Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp, together attract more than 3.5 billion average monthly users—a figure equivalent to almost half the world’s population. Horizon is currently reaching less than the population of Sioux Falls, S.D.

Horizon is designed to be a sprawling collection of interactive virtual spaces, or worlds, in which users appearing as avatars can shop, party and work. Yet there are rarely any girls in the Hot Girl Summer Rooftop Pool Party, and in Murder Village there is often no one to kill. Even the company’s showcase worlds, such as Questy’s, a virtual arcade featured in a Super Bowl commercial earlier this year, are mostly barren of users.

According to internal statistics, only 9% of worlds built by creators are ever visited by at least 50 people. Most are never visited at all.

Does anyone actually fucking care about the metaverse? I sure as hell don’t!

#Linked #News #Facebook

I started using Things 3 for task management five years ago. Even though Things was working perfectly for me, I wanted to check out Apple’s Reminders with its recent improvements.

So for the last 90 days I have been using Reminders plus GoodTasks to see if it could replace Things. The conclusion that I have come to is that I can.

But I’m going back to Things, and here’s why. I prefer the Things UI. It’s more compact and easier to read. I also use Things quick entry on Mac and link to tasks in other apps. Neither of these features are available in Reminders. Michael Truskowski, “There are many reasons to stick with Things, some of which are difficult to put in to words (there is a feeling to how it works).”

“Reminders is great, and the new update gives it some much needed new life. Most people will probably be very happy with it. But Things still goes several steps further. Where Apple has hit a nice balance for users with simple needs, Things fulfills so many more needs, while being truly delightful to use in a way Apple has not nailed down yet.”

#Apps #Productivity #Opinion

Instapaper iOS 8.2

Instapaper iOS 8.2 is now available on the App Store. This release includes in-article search, text justification, and several design updates that make it faster and easier to access some of your favorite Instapaper features.

After a long period of being ignored, it’s great to see the developers actively working on and improving Instapaper.

#iOS #Apps

There is one app that is the backbone for everything that I do on my Mac. That app is Alfred!

Most folks refer to Alfred as a launcher, but it is so much more. I use it for text expansion, finding files, launching apps, clipboard history, and more. No bullshit, this is the app that I use most on my Mac every single day.

The core of Alfred is free to download and use forever, with no strings attached, but if you end up liking it, you’ll want to check out the advanced features of the optional Powerpack.

New to Alfred? Check out Getting Started with Alfred 5.

These are the features that I use to unlock the full power of my Mac. Each feature listed below is a link to the documentation for that feature. To get the most out of Alfred, I highly recommend that you take the time to read about each feature.

My Workflows

Reference:

Guides and Tutorials – Alfred Help and Support

Tip: You can click the question mark icon in any preference to get to the relevant help page!

I hope this post gave you some insight to what's possible with Alfred.

If you’ve tried Alfred in the past and felt, that it's the same as Spotlight, I hope this post has changed that view.

If you’ve never heard of Alfred and are now eager to try it out, give it a go and download it for free.

If you have questions about my setup, please feel free to comment.

The post “The backbone of my Mac – Alfred 5” appeared first on ldstephens.net.

#Alfred #Mac #Productivity #HowTo

Ashley Belanger, Ars Technica

After Apple updated its privacy rules in 2021 to easily allow iOS users to opt out of all tracking by third-party apps, so many people opted out that the Electronic Frontier Foundation reported that Meta lost $10 billion in revenue over the next year.

Meta's business model depends on selling user data to advertisers, and it seems that the owner of Facebook and Instagram sought new paths to continue widely gathering data and to recover from the suddenly lost revenue. Last month, a privacy researcher and former Google engineer, Felix Krause, alleged that one way Meta sought to recover its losses was by directing any link a user clicks in the app to open in-browser, where Krause reported that Meta was able to inject a code, alter the external websites, and track “anything you do on any website,” including tracking passwords, without user consent.

Now, within the past week, two class action lawsuits [1] [2] from three Facebook and iOS users—who point directly to Krause's research—are suing Meta on behalf of all iOS users impacted, accusing Meta of concealing privacy risks, circumventing iOS user privacy choices, and intercepting, monitoring, and recording all activity on third-party websites viewed in Facebook or Instagram's browser. This includes form entries and screenshots granting Meta a secretive pipeline through its in-app browser to access “personally identifiable information, private health details, text entries, and other sensitive confidential facts”—seemingly without users even knowing the data collection is happening.

​[…]

In the meantime, the lawsuits say there is an easy way to stop Meta from collecting this info. Instead of clicking on links shared on Facebook or Instagram, copy and paste them directly into your preferred browser.

I have written so much about Facebook and its fucked-up ways that I get tired of repeating myself. But I think it’s important to continue shining a light on the shit that they continue to do. This time specifically targeting iOS users.

#Linked #iOS #Privacy #Facebook

Kev Quirk

Back in 2018 I decided I was ditching Android for an iPhone. Since then my Apple devices have continued to grow. Have I become a fanboy? I recently bought my seventh Apple device to add to my ever growing collection of iStuff. Here’s what I currently own:

This reminds me of my iCreep journey. Only mine started back in December 2014 when the keyboard on my Android went to hell. I replace it with a refurbished iPhone 6 Plus from Verizon.

Next came an iMac to replace my Windows computer. In 2015 I decided it would be nice to have so I got a MacBook Pro. I loved it so much that I finally sold the 2013 iMac.

I was never interested in an iPad but I eventually got one. It was the cheapest base model and as it turned out I never used it all that much.

Today I'm all in with Apple devices.

  • iPhone 11
  • M1 iMac
  • iPad Air
  • Magic Keyboard for iPad
  • Apple Pencil
  • Apple Watch
  • Air Pods Pro

I wouldn't call myself a “fanboy” but I love my Apple products.

The post “iCreep” appeared first on ldstephens.net.

#Apple #iPhone #iPad #Mac

Enter your email to subscribe to updates.