Designed for the most demanding needs of photographers and videographers.
Connect and charge all of your devices through a single Thunderbolt or USB-C port.

Apple Plans to Overhaul Entire Mac Line With AI-Focused M4 Chips

re: AI

So far, all generative AI can do is lie, defame, and make stuff up. It’s not an error, it’s by design. Just ask Google. Anything AI excretes, wether textual or image or video has to be assumed to be false. What good is that?

Apple Plans to Overhaul Entire Mac Line With AI-Focused M4 Chips

Yuck. I want a Mac that gets my work done faster and more efficiently. Now silicon chip area will be wasted on crap I don’t need or want, like the useless neural engine already there.

Why would I want AI in my Mac? A personal AI perhaps? I have zero need for that—see the first paragraph above.

I can’t think of any workflow task that AI could help me with, unless you include Adobe Camera Raw AI Denoise—but that’s just a name, a niche application having nothing to do with.

When Apple can’t get the basic stuff right or even fix the most rudimentary everyday bugs that continue to impede my workflow, a non-human “intelligence” will somehow aid me? Maybe Apple could start by using AI to eliminate the thousands of bugs they produce with each new macOS release?

BTW, there is little sign of human intelligence, so how do we achieve the I in AI?

Were AI honest and accurate and true, then we’d have to make it illegal to avoid civilizational collapse. But AI is trained via GIGO, and warped and distorted with biases when the GIGO does not suffice to toe the line.

It seems inevitable that AI will become the most abusive and invasive tool yet invented to monitor and control populations. The end of all liberty, everywhere, happening steadily then all at once. Which far too many people will cheer, until they come for them.


NEW! OWC Envoy SSD

re: SSD

Even smaller than the diminutive OWC Envoy Pro Elektron? I like that! Looks like a drive of choice for on-the-go stuff.

About $280 for 2TB or about $150 for 1TB

   
OWC Envoy SSD
OWC Envoy SSD

OWC Envoy SSD

Ultra-portable USB-C NVMe SSD with a perfect blend of performance, reliability, and affordability

Inspired by the extreme performance of the Envoy FX and the ultra portability of the Envoy Pro Elektron, we tasked our engineers with making a drive that combines the best of those products into one package. They did just that with the new Envoy SSD, a stunning rethinking of design that provides a portable best-in-class experience in an even smaller package than the Elektron.

Available in 1TB and 2TB capacities, Envoy SSD boasts an aircraft-grade aluminum housing in a palm-sized form factor, enabling it to fit in a pocket and go anywhere while surviving real-world abuses. The included USB-C cable ensures that Envoy is ready to use with computers, cameras, and smartphones.

And the Envoy’s high-speed capability means that storing, transferring, editing, and backing up files goes quickly. Envoy provides max speeds in excess of 1000MB/s and prevents thermal throttling to provide sustained speeds of no less than the full 1000MB/s it is capable of.

  • Performance for All: Over 1000MB/s speed to handle everything from pro projects to personal data backups1
  • Universally Compatible: Use with past, present, and future USB-C Macs, iPads, PCs, docks, and mobile devices
  • Ultra-Portable: Palm-sized and bus-powered for convenient use anywhere
  • Rugged and Fast: Aircraft-grade aluminum protects SSD while ensuring reliable performance
  • Informative: LED for at glance confirmation of power and activity status2
  • Complete: Included USB-C cable plugs into millions of USB-C devices anywhere
  • 3 Year OWC Limited Warranty

The all-new Envoy SSD is now available for pre-order and will ship in May from macsales.com for $149.99 at 1TB and $279.99 at 2TB.


   
OWC Envoy SSD
View all handpicked deals...

Sony a7R V Mirrorless Camera
$3898 $3448
SAVE $450

NEW! OWC Envoy Pro Elektron

re: SSD

I have one of these in 2TB capacity for 3-4 years now. Works like a champ all these years.

Great to have the same tiny form factor in 4TB capacity.

About $580 for 4TB or about $300 for 2TB or about $190 for 1TB

OWC Envoy Pro Mini SSD

The fastest, toughest mini-sized USB-C bus-powered SSD in the universe.

  • Super-fast for all: save, backup, and edit personal and work files with up to 1011MB/s real-world performance1
  • Universally compatible: Plug and play with Thunderbolt and USB Macs or PCs as well as devices like the iPad Pro and Chromebooks
  • Built like a tank: Crushproof, dustproof and waterproof IP67 rated2
  • Tiny: pocket-sized to go anywhere easily
  • Bootable: launch apps and start working in seconds (Mac only)
  • Informative: LED for at glance confirmation of power and activity status3
  • Cool: heat dissipating aircraft-grade aluminum housing for silent, throttle-free performance
  • Innergize™ Enabled: custom OWC software for complete health, performance, and field upgrade management
  • 3 Year OWC Limited Warranty
   
OWC Envoy Pro Elektron

NEW! OWC Envoy Pro Mini Thumb Drive SSD

re: SSD

OWC Envoy Pro Mini SSD

Capacity of up to 2000000MB (2TB sure beats the 5 MB huge and heavy hard drive my dorm roommate had in his primitive PC back in 1984!

About $170 for 1TB or about $270 for 2TB or about $99.99 for 1TB

OWC Envoy Pro Mini: Full-Sized SSD Performance That Fits in Your Pocket

  • Universally compatible: plug and play with USB or Thunderbolt (USB-C) ports on Macs, PCs, iPads, Chromebooks, Android tablets, and Surface devices
  • Versatile: perfect for audio, photography, graphics, gaming, and general data storage/backup uses
  • Protective: Apple Time Machine and Windows File History ready
  • Game on: ideal for game storage with PlayStation and Xbox consoles
  • Entertainment center: watch videos, listen to music, and view pictures through your Smart TV
  • Bootable: Startup and launch apps in just seconds
  • Slim: keeps adjacent ports available for use
  • Pocket-sized: thumb drive-sized and bus-powered for easy transport and use anywhere
  • Wear and share: safety breakaway neck lanyard keeps drive at fingertip reach while a detachable end offers easy drive sharing between devices and other users
  • Silent: heat-dissipating machined aluminum housing for cool and quiet use
  • 3 Year OWC Limited Warranty

...

   
OWC Envoy Pro Mini SSD
OWC Envoy Pro Mini SSD
OWC Thunderblade Thunderbolt SSD

Blazing fast, up to 32TB.

YEE HAH!



√ No more slow and noisy hard drives!

The Ultimate Mac Buyer’s Guide, Part 6: What GPU Cores Actually Do, and the Value of Upgrading

re: CPU cores
re: OWC articles by Lloyd

Sixth of a series of OWC articles by Lloyd.

View all refurbished and used Macs at OWC...

Click title to read more.

The Ultimate Mac Buyer’s Guide, Part 6: What GPU Cores Actually Do, and the Value of Upgrading

2024-04-10

...Generally speaking, GPU cores are oriented to parallel operations—all cores doing the same task, each on its own piece of data until some job is done (in parallel). GPUs are ill-suited to simultaneous unrelated tasks. They do not play well with multiple programs simultaneously, or even different tasks in the same application.

Even a single application like Photoshop will NOT allow you to work interactively while some jobs are being run on the GPU (e.g. Enhance Details)—you are blocked from proceeding until the GPU is free. Doing so would likely cause an application crash. And in general, GPU support has long been a science fair project with all sorts of reliability problems. 

But here in 2024, as APIs have evolved, things are pretty stable on Apple Silicon—much more so than on Intel Macs.

...

The Ultimate Mac Buyer’s Guide, Part 6: What GPU Cores Actually Do, and the Value of Upgrading

Astounding Deals: 2020 iMac 5K or 2019 MacBook Pro M1 Max 16-inch

iMac 5K 32GB

A 5K display costs $1300 too $1900... take a look.

Ummm....

The 2020 iMac 5K screen has a fabulous 5K display with an excellent free computer built-in.

You can’t find a better value on a Mac than this.

And with a 1 year Apple warranty.

Get one while they last!

CLICK TO VIEW: New and Used Macs at OWC

Or get a very nice MacBook Pro.

This is the same model I use for my field work (well, 4TB vs 2TB SSD), and it is superb. yes, the M2 Max and M3 Max are faster, but you’ll pay thousands more.


The Ultimate Mac Buyer’s Guide, Part 5: CPU Cores Speed Up Workflow — Sometimes

re: CPU cores
re: OWC articles by Lloyd

Fifth of a series of OWC articles by Lloyd.

View all refurbished and used Macs at OWC...

Click title to read more.

The Ultimate Mac Buyer’s Guide, Part 5: How Cores Speed Up Workflow — Sometimes

2024-04-02

Here, I discuss the general principles governing how many CPU cores make sense for your tasks. A subsequent article will show how to actually check out your own specific workflow and applications for CPU core usage and scalability.

CPU core usage is more complex on Apple Silicon (M-Series) processors due to having both “performance” and “efficiency” cores. For our purposes here, I ignore that difference— in practice it makes little difference in the evaluation for workflow needs, and even less so on the M3 series chips, whose efficiency cores are faster than ever before.

...

The Ultimate Mac Buyer’s Guide, Part 5: CPU Cores Speed Up Workflow — Sometimes

Apple Core Rot: macOS Ventura Destroys (removes) *all* of My Favorite Location

re: Thunderbolt 3

Apple software quality control

macOS Ventura update 13.6.6 update destroyedremoved all (but one) of my Favorites in the sidebar. I use those heavily every day.

The same thing happened a year or two ago.

This is data loss, the worst kind of bug. Minor perhaps, but data loss nonetheless.

What else has been damaged? Hopefully nothing.

Quality assurance is an oxymoron at Apple.


Great Deals on Intel Macs + Grab the Best Thunderbolt 3 Dock for just $99

re: Thunderbolt 3

Add the Dock below to an excellent Intel-based Mac from OWC.

There are now many versions of Thunderbolt Docks. Your particular needs may vary as to specific ports, so look over the specs before selecting one.

But the one Dock feature set that has proven itself over time for me (I have 3 of them) is the OWC 14-port Thunderbolt Dock with the specs below.

The key spec that I require is the Mini DisplayPort port, for my 2nd display which requires DisplayPort or Mini DisplayPort input. If you use a Thunderbolt 3 display, then your choice could differ.

This dock is a particularly good deal as I write this: OWC SKU: OWCTB3DK14PSG

  • 85W of notebook charging power
  • Dual Thunderbolt 3 (USB-C) ports
  • (5) USB 3.2 (5Gb/s) Type-A ports
  • (1) USB 3.2 (10Gb/s) Type-C port
  • Mini DisplayPort Port
  • Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) RJ-45 Port
  • S/PDIF Digital Audio Output Port
  • 3.5mm Stereo Audio Input/Output Combo Port

I have 3 of them — flawless operation for years, the ideal mix of ports, etc. A key feature for me is the Mini DisplayPort port, for connecting my NEC PA302W display.

Grab one now. Most other docks cost $200 to $350. This remains my favorite after 5 years.

$279.99 $99 for OWC 14-Port Thunderbolt Dock

Facebook Secretly Wiretapped Competitors

re: security

re: Facebook and Its Ilk Are a DiseaseWhy isn’t Zuckerberg et all over at Rikers enjoying a nice rat breakfast?

Facebook Secretly Wiretapped Competitors: Documents

2024-03-27

Facebook violated federal law with its secret program, according to some lawyers.

Facebook secretly obtained proprietary data from competitors, including Snapchat, according to newly unsealed court documents

At the request of CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook officials developed a program called In-App Action Panel (IAAP) that they deployed in 2016, and the program was in use through mid-2019, according to the documents, which include internal emails.

The program used cyberattacks to intercept information from Snapchat, YouTube, and Amazon. The program then decrypted the information.

Lawyers said in one of the documents, “Facebook’s IAAP Program used nation-state-level hacking technology developed by the company’s Onavo team, in which Facebook paid contractors (including teens) to designate Facebook a trusted ‘root’ certificate authority on their mobile devices, then generated fake digital certificates to redirect secure Snapchat analytics traffic (and later, analytics from YouTube and Amazon) from Snapchat’s servers to Onavo’s; decrypted these analytics and used them for competitive gain, including to inform Facebook’s product strategy; reencrypted them; and sent them up to Snapchat’s servers as though it came straight from Snapchat’s app, with Facebook’s Social Advertising competitor none the wiser.”

Violation of Law

Facebook’s actions amounted to wiretapping and violated federal law.

The Electronic Communications Privacy Act of 1986, sometimes known as the Wiretap Act, bars people from intercepting any “wire, oral, or electronic communication” and from intentionally disclosing the contents of information that was illegally intercepted.

...

MPG: the rich and powerful are rarely held accountable, unless they’re the wrong political persuasion.

Back in 2018, I wrote:

MPG has long advised against Facebook and its ilk.

Facebook and similar are massive and incredibly sophisticated surveillence tools by design.

Recent events were inevitable and are trivial. That is, if the implications are properly understood of the massive threat these services pose, e.g., paving a superhighway to a totalitarian Orwellian state the likes of which could only be envied by past States, with China leading the race.

I don’t know who is lame enough to use Facebook these days anyway. Young people don’t. It’s a godawful platform. Boycott it!


The Ultimate Mac Buyer’s Guide, Part 4: How Much Memory Does Your Workflow Require?

re: memory usage
re: OWC articles by Lloyd

Fourth of a series.

View all refurbished and used Macs at OWC...

Click title to read more.

The Ultimate Mac Buyer’s Guide, Part 4: How Much Memory Does Your Workflow Require?

2024-03-27

How to determine the memory your workflow requires? A little sleuthing while you work can zero-in on exactly what you’ll need. Too little memory, and all that CPU and GPU power can be starved of data while the system fetches it from disk.

...

The Ultimate Mac Buyer’s Guide, Part 4: How Much Memory Does Your Workflow Require?

NEW! Automatic File Version Deletion in macOS Sonoma 14.4

re: Apple Core Rot

At last—an automatic solution to overcrowded drives!

As a further market-leading bonus feature , some software is automatically killed so that it cannot create any files at all! And your USB devices might disappear too. All these things help keep file creation to a minimum—sheer genius.

Apple is on a roll!

macOS Sonoma 14.4: Reasons Not to Update

2024-03-15

iCloud Drive — Destroys Saved Versions

Users running macOS 14.4 that have "Optimize Mac Storage" enabled should be aware that they are at risk of losing all previously saved versions of a file if they opt to remove it from iCloud Drive local storage. Versions are normally created automatically when users save files using apps that work with the version system in macOS. If you have already updated, either do not save files to iCloud Drive at all, or turning off Optimize Mac Storage. To perform the latter in System Settings, click your Apple ID, select iCloud, and then toggle off the switch next to "Optimize Mac Storage."

MPG: what a clown show.

And what a blessing that Apple canceled its plans for an automobile.

MPG advises strictly avoiding as many Apple iCloud features as you can. Enable only the features you need. In no situation should you EVER consider Apple backup of any form a reliable backup.

OWC Thunderblade Thunderbolt SSD

Blazing fast, up to 32TB.

YEE HAH!



√ No more slow and noisy hard drives!

Java users on macOS 14 running on Apple silicon systems should consider delaying the macOS 14.4 update

re: Apple Core Rot

Apple software quality control

OMG—this is almost unbelievable.

Except it's not—Apple gross incompetence at software quality assurance knows no bounds. Shipping a release without even rudimentary testing is standard practice.

This problem is one in a very long line of feckless screwups.

See also: macOS Sonoma 14.4: Reasons Not to Update (including data loss!)

Java users on macOS 14 running on Apple silicon systems should consider delaying the macOS 14.4 update

2024-03-15

An issue introduced by macOS 14.4, which causes Java process to terminate unexpectedly, is affecting all Java versions from Java 8 to the early access builds of JDK 22. There is no workaround available, and since there is no easy way to revert a macOS update, affected users might be unable to return to a stable configuration unless they have a complete backup of their systems prior to the OS update.

The issue was not present in the early access releases for macOS 14.4, so it was discovered only after Apple released the update.
[MPG: will Apple be releasing a new Jackass series featuring itself?]

...

Oracle has notified its customers, Apple, and our partners in OpenJDK of this situation. We recommend that users of Java on ARM-based Apple devices running macOS 14 delay applying the update until this issue is resolved.

MPG: unbelievable. Profuse profanity is fully warranted.

Obviously, Apple has zero software quality assurance for testing a technology used all over the world. MPG reiterates its advice to wait at least 6 months to “upgrade” to any major new release, and preferably a year.


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