Your roundup of tech, culture, and nostalgia for

July 19, 2022 // Web version //

TimeMachiner. Tech, culture, nostalgia. By Aaron Crocco

Read to the end for pet advice.

Hello. It’s great to bring you a new edition of TimeMachiner this Tuesday. A big welcome to Josh, Page, Michael, and my newest subscribers to TimeMachiner. Thank you for giving me space in your inbox. 🙏🏻

I've been reading a super interesting book written by the fellow who created two incredible things at Apple: He helped develop the Safari web browser and he created the iPhone keyboard + autocorrect. The book, Creative Selection: Inside Apple's Design Process During the Golden Age of Steve Jobs by Ken Kocienda, has been a fun and fast read.

What has hooked me are so many of the references Kocienda makes to Apple's Newton. The ill-fated PDA was done in by its awful handwriting recognition and he was adamantly looking to avoid a similar input disaster on the still-secret iPhone project. Kocienda's tales of how Apple works behind the scenes are really fascinating but he also goes into some details about how he himself views design and 'taste'.

This is all great timing because the Newton turns 30 this year and I have some fond memories of the device in my Egg Freckles article below. Regarding the book, I'm about 2/3 through it already and I'm really glad my library had a copy for me to jump on after finishing The Institute. If you like some good nerdy non-fiction, I recommend Ken's book.

A quick bit of housekeeping: I've started up a referral program. It's pretty simple. You get someone to subscribe to TimeMachiner, I send a free gift your way. Many of you know about this but if you don't, and want in, hit reply and I'll send you the details.

Here's today's Random Factoid: You could fit all the planets between the Earth and the moon. Source

Finally, something a bit different. If you like a bit of poetry with your random, check out Hello Universe. Punit's thoughts come to you with some original prose and they're both fun and thought-provoking. I especially like "This New Guy". You can read that and more at Hello Universe.

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Unfulfilled Wish
If there was a Dollar Store for the internet, Wish would certainly be it. Cheap, sub-par, sometimes knockoff goods, Wish is the place where you can buy weird stuff and things that end up looking nothing like the images on the site. At the NY Times, Tiffany Hsu and Sapna Maheshwari report on how…
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Egg Freckles
One of the most infamous Apple products to hit the market in the first Non-Steve-Jobs Era was the Newton. This PDA (remember those!?!?) was Apple’s attempt to make a device that could be portable, useful, and have some amazing technology in it. The Newton was an absolute failure for Apple. Now, 30 years later,…
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The Correct Fan Theory
Spoiler Warning if you’re not caught up on Stranger Things 4. If you haven’t watched it yet, skip this story. Back in 2016 the kids were doing an interview for the show. At one point, shown below, Gaten Matarazzo who plays Dustin, speaks of a fan theory as to what is going on in…
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Lightning Thief
For the past two decades we’ve lived cable hell. It’s the place where everything we own has a different charger cable and one where there are so many “standards” that never make things easier. It has gotten a bit better in recent years, but now the US is working to push it even further.…
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