UpHabit »

My thanks to UpHabit for sponsoring the site this week. It’s the personal CRM that makes connecting with the people you care about part of your daily routine, and for a limited time, you can get 60% off when you sign up for any of UpHabit’s subscription plans.

Brent Simmons’ Inessential Turns 20 »

Brent Simmons:

It started like this: at the time I was working at UserLand Software on a blogging app called Manila, and this was my own personal Manila blog. It’s gone through a few other engines since then. (These days it’s rendered — as a static site — by some Ruby scripts.)

It‘s tempting to think that The Thing of my career has been NetNewsWire. And that’s kinda true. But the thing I’ve done the longest, love the most, and am most proud of is this blog.

Twenty years is an amazing run, and I’ve been a happy reader for almost all of them. I enjoy Brent’s writing and few have a better perspective on the Mac. If you aren’t reading him, you should be.

As a side note, Brent is the guest on the next episode of Mac Power Users, where we talk about this and a whole lot more. Look for it on Sunday.

Reminders Isn’t for Me … Yet 

When Apple announced that its Reminders application was receiving a much-needed overhaul this year with iOS 13 and macOS Catalina, I was excited. I think Apple has done an amazing job at modernizing the Notes app, and I was hopeful Reminders would become an equally useful application across Apple’s platforms.

I’ve tried just about ever task manager out there: OmniFocus, Things, Remember the Milk, 2Do, TickTick and more. I usually end up back in Todoist for its reliable sync, coupled with its lightning-fast native language processing for inputting tasks. Many applications require too many clicks or taps to create a new task within a given project, with a due date.

Past reliable syncing and natural language processing, I also prefer applications that can keep tasks within a project sorted by due date. Things, Remember the Milk and 2Do — among others — can do this, but Todoist always adds a new task to end of a list, requiring me to resort my projects on a regular basis. This is quick enough on the Mac and iOS, but still annoying.

I don’t often use Siri to add tasks to my system, but Shortcuts support is critical for me. I love being able to send a URL to my task lists, either for linking on 512 Pixels or just to check out later. Currently, Todoist’s shortcut integration is completely broken, with a fix coming “soon,” according to the Todoist support engineer I spoke to about it a month ago.

The vast majority of the tasks in my system are repeating tasks. Running a business means doing a lot of the same work, over and over, on a weekly, monthly, quarterly or even annual basis. Managing these — and being able to adjust them on the fly — is critical, which is why I cannot use Things as my task manager, as it doesn’t allow me to easily complete repeating tasks early.

All of that is to say that Reminders looks like it could be the magic bullet for my GTD pain. Now that iOS 13 is less bumpy than it was, Reminders seems to be syncing well enough, so last week, I re-created a single project in the app to run it in parallel with Todoist.

It didn’t go well. Here are some of my complaints:

Sorting in Reminders is just weird. Items in a list can only be sorted when on the Mac, and the sort order doesn’t seem to stick for very long. Worse, when a list is sorted by due date, items with no due date appear before items with due dates … which is madness.

Entering tasks is clunkier then it should be. On iOS, Reminders relies on the QuickType bar for making the typed word “Tomorrow” the due date for the task. It’s awkward, and In this example, I’ve typed the word “tomorrow” in the task name field, but to make it the due date, I have to tap it above the keyboard. Reminders should be confident enough to use what I type as metadata. At least repeating tasks can be created at the same time:

The app can get a bit junky. This is a personal preference thing, but I don’t need to see all of the metadata on a given task at once. In this example, I added a due date, location, note, URL, flag and an iMessage reminders to a single task. Some of this could be stashed away behind the i button.

The user should be able to customize what they see in this view, including the default text size, which is both too small and unchangeable on the Mac, not unlike Notes was for a long time after its reboot.

I want to use Reminders. I like using default apps when they meet my needs. My complaints may be esoteric, but that’s how things are when dealing with task managers. Hopefully Apple puts some of these things on its own task list, because so much about Reminders is great.

Connected #268: Executive Spaghetti »

This week on a very special episode:

Federico is joined by a better Hackett to talk about Apple’s range of earbuds, then Stephen butts in to discuss Adobe’s big week and what Apple should do in the wake of iOS 13 and macOS Catalina’s buggy releases. Then, they fire the spoiler horn and review “The Morning Show” and “For All Mankind.”

Big thanks to Merri for stepping in and helping us out this week, and to our sponsors:

  • Moo: Custom business printing and design. Save 15%.
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Liftoff #111: Escape of the Mole »

This week on Liftoff:

Commercial Crew continues to grind forward, while InSight struggles to dig on Mars. Then, some SLS upper stage news, reflections on the Galileo probe and a spoiler-free review of “For All Mankind.”

On our next episode, we’ll be getting into the Apollo 12 mission.

My thanks to our sponsors this week:

  • Squarespace: Make your next move. Enter offer code LIFTOFF at checkout to get 10% off your first purchase.
  • eero: Get your WiFi fixed as soon as tomorrow! Free overnight shipping.

Kbase Article of the Week: Daylight Saving Time Update (Panther) v001 »

Apple Support:

The Daylight Saving Time Update for Mac OS X and Mac OS X Server addresses recent changes in the way Daylight Saving Time will be observed in the U.S. and Canada beginning in March 2007 and includes the latest time zone information for the rest of the world.

That article links to this one:

Apple is providing software updates for Mac OS X 10.3, 10.4 and later based on worldwide time zone information available as of January 8, 2007. To make sure that your clock maintains the proper time, simply install the updates that are shown for your computer in Software Update. You should install these updates even if your computer is used in a time zone that is not affected. For more details about the available updates, or if you have an earlier Mac OS version, see below.

The 2007 time zone and Daylight Saving Time rule changes for the United States and most of Canada are already available in Mac OS X 10.4.5 or later.

If you’re still using Mac OS X 10.2.8 or earlier, you can adjust your clock manually using Date & Time preferences. Deselect the option to set date and time automatically, then set the time for your local time zone as needed.

Still using Mac OS 9.2? Use the Date and Time control panel to deselect the option to observe Daylight Saving Time changes automatically, then enable Daylight Saving Time manually. Applications that run in the Classic environment of Mac OS X will honor the Daylight Saving Time setting in Mac OS X.

Applications that run in Classic will honor the Daylight Saving Time setting in Mac OS X.

Glad we could clear that all up.

Sponsor: UpHabit, Your Personal CRM »

UpHabit​ makes building and maintaining strong relationships with the people you care about part of your daily routine.

We all lead busy lives. Often pulled in several directions at once with an ever-growing list of personal and business contacts, it’s easy to fall out of touch with people. UpHabit solves the problem with a powerful set of tools that help you maintain strong, healthy relationships with your most important contacts.

With UpHabit, you can take control of creating stronger personal or business relationships with features like:

  • The ability to set reminders to keep in touch with people.
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  • Tagging to help organize your contacts.

It’s incredibly easy to get started and begin enjoying the benefits of stronger relationships immediately with UpHabit.

UpHabit is constantly updated with new features drawn directly from user feedback. Look out for new features like message templates, two-way contact syncing, and more coming soon.

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Make connecting with your most important contacts part of your daily routine. ​Download UpHabit now​ to try it for free, and for a limited time, you can get 60% off when you sign up for any of UpHabit’s subscription plans.

Mac Power Users #508: One for Me and One for You, with Sara Dietschy »

This week on Mac Power Users:

YouTuber and podcaster Sara Dietschy joins Stephen and David to share about her video work, from cameras to editing and beyond. They also discuss managing large amounts of data across multiple locations, the role of the iPad and turning creative work into a business.

I’m a big fan of Sara’s work, and it was a lot of fun to talk about some topics that I normally don’t get into — specifically the pros and cons of doing professional video work on the Mac vs. the PC. The GPUs in the MacBook Pro limit the types of work some people can do with the machines, which is a real bummer in our laptop-focused world.

My thanks to our sponsors:

  • Sanebox: Stop drowning in email!
  • The Omni Group: We’re passionate about productivity for Mac, iPhone and iPad.
  • Squarespace: Make your next move. Enter offer code MPU at checkout to get 10% off your first purchase.
  • Hover: Make a name for yourself. Get 10% off any domain name.