IFTTT, una specie di scotch digitale che collega servizi web diversi fra loro, ha recentemente cambiato direzione. Invece di tentare di monetizzare i suoi utenti – strategia che fino ad oggi non ha funzionato – proverà a farsi pagare dai servizi web stessi. Per questa ragione qualsiasi azienda può da adesso applicare per entrare a far parte dell’ecosistema di IFTTT, e così integrarsi, facilmente e senza dover sviluppare nulla da zero, con centinaia di servizi web.

Linden Tibbets, il CEO e fondatore dell’azienda, dice di voler diventare “il PayPal dell’accesso”, un soggetto “che facilita uno scambio fra un servizio e un altro”:

In its early years, IFTTT didn’t have any direct relationships with the services it was mashing together. Instead, IFTTT tapped into those services’ existing developer tools, which were available to anyone.

“No one at Flickr or Twitter or The Weather Channel had any knowledge of who I was or what IFTTT was doing,” Tibbets says. “We were just somebody using their API.” […]

The IFTTT Partners program launched in early November after months of private testing. For $199 per month, companies can list themselves in IFTTT’s service directory, and embed recipes—now called “Applets”—directly into their own apps and website.

Entri scannerizzando l’iPhone, prendi quello che ti serve, e te ne vai senza passare da una cassa, con le cose già pagate.

Come? Con tante telecamere:

Amazon Go works by using computer vision and sensors to detect what items you’re taking out of the store. You start by scanning an app as you enter the Amazon Go shop. You do your normal shopping, and the sensors throughout the store identify the items in your cart and charge them to your account when you walk out the door. It’ll feel like shoplifting, except you’re actually being watched by more cameras than you can imagine.

Quando si devono caricare enormi quantità di dati sulla cloud resta tuttora più veloce spedirli – fisicamente, mettendoli dentro un camion o su un aereo – piuttosto che fare un upload.

Il nuovo servizio di Amazon per AWS va incontro a quest’esigenza: è un camion, capace di trasportare circa 100 petabyte di dati. Per riempirlo completamente ci si mettono 10 giorni. Poi inizia l’upload, che in questo caso significa che il camion si mette in viaggio verso il datacenter di Amazon.

Un punto di vista alternativo: l’autore dell’articolo è felicissimo che il nuovo MacBook Pro sia completamente USB-C, e ne illustra alcuni vantaggi:

The new charging block that comes with the MBP looks exactly the same as any traditional MBP charger. But this charger is totally different than old MacBook Pro chargers in a vital way — it’s just a generic usb charger. There’s nothing about it that makes it “special” for your Mac. […]

I can plug my phone into my MacBook Pro charger and it works perfectly. Now I only need to bring one power cable to the café instead of two and I can charge my computer or my phone interchangeably. This is so nice! But this goes both ways. I can just as easily plug the MacBook Pro into the same USB car charger that I use for my phone.

Harvard Business Review:

Technological revolutions tend to involve some important activity becoming cheap, like the cost of communication or finding information. Machine intelligence is, in its essence, a prediction technology, so the economic shift will center around a drop in the cost of prediction. The first effect of machine intelligence will be to lower the cost of goods and services that rely on prediction. This matters because prediction is an input to a host of activities including transportation, agriculture, healthcare, energy manufacturing, and retail.

When the cost of any input falls so precipitously, there are two other well-established economic implications. First, we will start using prediction to perform tasks where we previously didn’t. Second, the value of other things that complement prediction will rise.

Ho rinunciato alle stampanti anni fa, perché non ne esiste una che, come si direbbe da certe parti, just works. Però, c’é chi ancora non ha desistito e ne fa uso; queste persone, a volte, stampano anche cose da internet.

UX Design ha raccolto alcuni suggerimenti e accorgimenti da mettere dentro @media print, per rendere i nostri siti stampabili.

Settimana scorsa mi sono comparsi un paio di inviti ad eventi nel calendario di iCloud dal titolo sospetto, “Ray-Ban” o “Louis Vuitton” più qualcosa. Trattasi di spam — a quanto pare inviti simili sono arrivati a molti. Ritrovarsi un evento inaspettato, pianificato per le 4 del pomeriggio, relativo ad uno sconto improvviso per degli occhiali, dentro il mio calendario personale è stato abbastanza fastidioso. È interessante, oltretutto, come questa (diciamo) vulnerabilità sia rimasta inutilizzata per anni fino a pochi giorni fa.

Per eliminare questi eventi/spam è sufficiente declinarli, ma declinandoli si comunica anche al mittente che il nostro indirizzo email esiste (perché iCloud gli invia una notifica, facendogli così sapere che non ci ha disturbati invano). MacSparky suggerisce, altrimenti, di passare agli inviti tramite email (e far fare alla casella di posta il lavoro di selezione):

If the problem continues, the best solution is to go into the Calendar screen of your iCloud.com account and throw the lever to move calendar invitations from the calendar app to email. Then you can delete emails before these things ever hit your calendar. The below gallery walks you through the steps to do so.

The crappy part about this is that the next time my daughter sends me an invite to drive her somewhere, I won’t see it until I get to email. Like I said, Apple needs to give us a better way to deal with this.

Lo sostengono in molti, specie da quando è arrivata la promozione a Chief Design Officer e, negli ultimi giorni, a causa del libro — visto come il suo canto del cigno, il suo saluto a Apple con una retrospettiva di quanto fatto negli ultimi vent’anni.

Io la penso[1. Be’, spero, soprattutto, che abbia ragione] come John Gruber:

I’ll argue the other side: the existence of this book — not just what the book is about, but the extraordinary effort that went into creating and printing it — is evidence that Jony Ive is wholly in charge of product at Apple. Perhaps every bit as much as Steve Jobs was. If Jony Ive wants to make a $300 book of super-high-end product photography, Apple makes that book. (See also: last year’s $20,000 gold Apple Watches.)

Maybe it’s just wishful thinking on my part, because I don’t want Ive to leave Apple. Confirmation bias can lead one to see what one wants to see. But if I had to bet, I’d bet he’s not going anywhere. Fundamentally I think Jony Ive loves Apple, feels a responsibility to the legacy of his collaboration with Steve Jobs, and that whatever aspirations he has for the remainder of his career, personally, they’re only possible at Apple. I think if you want to argue that Ive is one step out the door at Apple, you also have to argue that he’s one step out the door of being a designer. That doesn’t sound right to me.

Electronic Frontier Foundation:

If Mr. Trump carries out these plans, they will likely be accompanied by unprecedented demands on tech companies to hand over private data on people who use their services. This includes the conversations, thoughts, experiences, locations, photos, and more that people have entrusted platforms and service providers with. Any of these might be turned against users under a hostile administration.

Dal permettere accesso anonimo a un sito (senza costringere durante la registrazione a utilizzare nome e cognome), al cancellare i dati raccolti in background durante la navigazione, se proprio debbono essere raccolti in primo luogo.

Suggerimenti simili li aveva dati Maciej Cegłowski, durante uno dei suoi talk.

Uber ha pubblicato un white paper spiegando come intenda, in un futuro remoto, gestire dei “taxi volanti”:

Recently, technology advances have made it practical to build this new class of VTOL aircraft. […]

We expect that daily long-distance commutes in heavily congested urban and suburban areas and routes under-served by existing infrastructure will be the first use cases for urban VTOLs. This is due to two factors. First, the amount of time and money saved increases with the trip length, so VTOLs will have greatest appeal for those traveling longer distances and durations. Second, even though building a high density of landing site infrastructure in urban cores (e.g. on rooftops and parking structures) will take some time, a small number of vertiports could absorb a large share of demand from long-distance commuters since the “last mile” ground transportation component will be small relative to the much longer commute distance.

We also believe that in the long-term, VTOLs will be an affordable form of daily transportation for the masses, even less expensive than owning a car.

Firefox ha aggiornato Firefox Focus, precedentemente solo un content blocker, trasformandolo in un browser completamente privato per iOS:

Firefox Focus is set by default to block many of the trackers that follow you around the Web. You don’t need to change privacy or cookie settings.  You can browse with peace of mind, feeling confident in the knowledge that you can instantly erase your sessions with a single tap – no menus needed.

Clickclickclick.click sfrutta gli eventi del browser (click, hover, posizione del mouse, browser utilizzato, tempo di permanenza, ridimensionamento della finestra, etc.) per creare un gioco testuale alquanto bizzarro che aiuta anche a capire quante cose un sito può evincere sui propri visitatori, senza che questi rivelino nulla esplicitamente.

Wallpaper ha intervistato Jony Ive, riguardo al costoso libro:

The biggest challenge for us was the fact that our focus and preoccupation is always on the future. So that tends to exclude much time to look back at the work we have previously done. Sometimes if we are struggling with a particular issue then that gives us reason to go back and look at the way we have solved problems in the past. But because we’ve been so consumed by our current and future work we came to realise we didn’t have a catalogue of the physical products. So about eight years ago we felt an obligation to address this and build an objective archive. Many of the products that you see, we actually had to go out and purchase [laughs]. It’s a rather shameful admission, but it’s just not an area that we really invested much time or energy in, so we started to build an archive of the physical products.

(Se volete un libro simile, senza spendere $300, acquistate Iconic)

Un esperimento di Google in grado di riconoscere quello che disegnate. Avete venti secondi di tempo per disegnare un concetto, e Google in quegli stessi venti secondi dovrebbe riuscire a identificare quel che state disegnando.

Ci ha preso quasi sempre con i miei decisamente orribili e confusi schizzi. Per intenderci: l’umano che siede di fronte a me ci ha preso meno di Google su quel che rappresentassero.

(Altri esperimenti inquietanti qui)

The Intercept ha messo assieme una lista di piccoli passi che potete compiere per mettere i vostri dati un po’ più al sicuro — visti i risultati attuali e ciò che ci attende.

Se volete una guida più completa, quella messa assieme dalla Electronic Frontier Foundation fa al caso vostro.