This picture appeared automatically in my contacts. I grew up thinking Charles Schwab was an old white guy. I guess the financial world is more racially diverse than I thought.
Although I only have my experience at Apple and those of my friends at other companies, but this appears to be the case:
- Most companies use codenames from time to time
- Most companies that do use codenames use them for ultra-super-secret projects
- Most companies that use codenames are to protect leaks to the outside world, not leaks within a company
- Apple is not like most companies
The only thing at Apple that doesn’t have codenames are other codenames. Oh wait, that’s not entirely true since some projects have multiple codenames based on which organization you are in, although this is not super common.
To complicate matters, there are not really resources to translate a codename into what it stands for or vice versa. So it’s fairly anecdotal and many people keep their own cheat sheets.
But early in my career at Apple I had an amusing codename experience in a … READ THE REST
It’s always fun to walk around and hear snippets of conversation coming from offices, conference rooms, or open areas. Sometimes you hear frightening things out of context!
My favorite overheard line came from when I worked on Aperture. We were in the same area of Infinite Loop as Finance, so we would frequently see the CFO, Peter Oppenheimer.
One day I was walking down the hall and Peter was leaning against a wall having a conversation with someone I didn’t know.
What I heard coming out of Peter’s mouth was:
I don’t see why we have to get the FBI involved
Do I want to know the context? Should I sell my stock?
I’ve written a lot about work/life balance, including this one: Slow down and improve your health and job.
Monday this week was the first day of Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) in San Jose, featuring a keynote address highlighting new products soon to make their way out the door.
But I felt like turning it off after the opening movie.
As background, there is a lot of concern about the intrusion of technology on our lives and how it affects us. Apple has recently claimed to care about balancing the use of technology and brought us great features like Screen Time to help:
Screen Time, these new tools are empowering users who want help managing their device time, and balancing the many things that are important to them.iOS 12 introduces new features to reduce interruptions and manage Screen Time
According to the WWDC opening video, writing apps appears to … READ THE REST
There used to be a weekly meeting with Steve Jobs to go over user interfaces and workflows for macOS. He would get together with the higher ups as well as members of the Human Interface team. Sometimes first level managers would be there or individual engineers might be there to run a demo or answer questions. They were held in a room called Diplomacy on the Infinite Loop campus and typically ran for many hours.
After this meeting, there would be a “debriefing” where one or more of the attendees of that meeting would report to the underlings. Sometimes that included people like me.
That’s the backstory to what’s actually a very short anecdote. What was fun about these debriefings is that they were like a game of telephone.
- Steve might say something in the weekly meeting
- Someone would jot down what they think he said
- The notes might get
Just because it doesn’t have a keyboard, display, touchscreen, or run software doesn’t mean it’s not technology.
Like me, you have probably assembled a stash of items for the coming apocalypse. But in our modern age, everything needs batteries and that just won’t do. So in case you’re missing a nose hair trimmer in your emergency suitcase, here’s one for you.
It’s called the Groom Mate Platinum XLand has the following features:
- The manufacturer only makes nose hair trimmers. Really.
- It’s called Platinum XL there is no Gold or Silver and no sizes other than XL. I guess they feel like everyone has big noses.
- It requires no batteries. Apocalypse points!
- It’s an excellent conversation piece if you set it pretty much anywhere.
- It trims nose hairs effectively if you follow the instructions of Amazon reviewer Scott McDonald: “Insert. QUICKLY Twist-Twist-Twist-Twist. Remove”
- It rips nose hairs out by the
My school district offered interesting summer courses ranging from pottery to magic to computer programming. I never took pottery but I took the other two.
The summer before kindergarten I signed up for the computer programming class. Everyone was within a few years of my age so it wasn’t like I was some crazy prodigy or something.
Turns out we only had one computer (a mainframe), a keypunch, a punchcard reader, and a printer. I didn’t know what to expect so it all seemed pretty cool to me.
We learned BASIC and set to work on writing a short program. I decided I wanted to ask the computer for the size of a baseball field and have it print out the answer. I showed my program to the teacher and he told me I needed to add a line of code to print out the answer.
I was deflated. The … READ THE REST
You may be familiar with the phrase “death by a thousand cuts” or variations on that. You may not know that it has a gruesome origin.
Lingchi (Chinese: 凌遲), translated variously as the slow process, the lingering death, or slow slicing, and also known as death by a thousand cuts, was a form of torture and execution used in China from roughly 900 CE until it was banned in 1905Lingchi—Wikipedia
The modern version is sometimes called “death by a thousand papercuts” and does not result in actual death but perhaps the death of a product or company.
I couldn’t find agreement on what the phrase means in modern times, so here’s my version.
Let’s say you have a product and you are putting out new versions every year. Issues get reported and are prioritized. For obvious reasons, the most serious issues are more likely to … READ THE REST
While this is one of my favorite Apple stories, it’s probably one of those “you had to be there” kind of things. Anyways, here goes.
Our senior VP at the time this happened was Bertrand Serlet. His hair could be quite spikey and windswept. Combined with the fact that he was tall and thin led to the inevitable comparison to Beaker from The Muppets.
At Apple we had a server where everyone had a “user picture” stored. When you received an email from someone, it would look for a picture on that server and if it was there, it would display it in the upper right corner of the email. Very cool.
One of the people who had access to this server decided to play a practical joke and replace Bertrand’s picture, which indicated that he may have been a member of Duran Duran. … READ THE REST
I’m sure I’m not the only one that has wondered what Steve Jobs would have looked if he had been a cockatiel. I was recently looking at my favorite sticker pack, called Coco Bird Emoji Stickers. I found this emoji.
I shared this emoji with friends and they all agreed that if he were a cockatiel, he would probably look like this. My good friend Kris Shamloo (probably a made up name) doctored the emoji using his iPad Pro and Apple Pencil (product plug).
I realized the original emoji was naked and blind so this updated version was much nicer.
Hopefully at least 3 or 4 people have now had their curiosities satisfied and everyone else has been scared away from this site forever.
Steve Jobs cockatiel (aka Steve Jobsatiel) now … READ THE REST