Apple iPhone Event 2019: Phil Schiller Max

Today was Apple's annual iPhone event where we saw several new devices joining Apple's range of consumer products. There are a lot of websites that will be fawning over the details of those devices, but I want to raise a much more important issue. Phil Schiller needs to get in shape.

During last year's iPhone event, I noted that Phil did not appear to be availing himself of the many health features that were touted during the Apple Watch key note. His physique today was even more alarming. His weight is now affecting his posture, forcing him to walk at an odd angle. Phil Schiller's appearance was even more unsettling because he forgot to untuck his shirt. In all of the years Phil has appeared at Apple events, he has always had his shirt untucked. Occasionally you'd get the impression that he had just untucked it prior to going out on stage, but at least the effort was made.

Today he looked old, lumpy, and defeated; like a man who has given up.

A couple of years ago I was dealing with a fairly serious health issue that I haven't talked about publicly. This was at the same time that Doug Woods was beginning to experience his health problems.I kept mine private because I did not want to give the impression that all music app YouTubers were dying. But I was.

Between September 2016 and February 2017 I was periodically hit with a terrible pain that wracked every organ of my body. During these "attacks" I was weak, confused, and truly felt like I was dying for several hours at a time. My mind would just kind of go into this odd Zen of acceptence, "Well I guess that's that then." This would happen to me at about once per day for the entire 6 month duration.

I was in and out of Emergency Rooms and doctors visits during that time. No one could tell me what was causing my "attacks" or how to prevent them. I had noticed that it seemed to be related to my eating. As long as I kept eating I would avoid attacks, or minimize their impact.


Acidic Blood (Artist Rendering)

I put on a lot of weight in those 6 months before I figured out that I was dealing with a rare non-diabetic form of ketoacidosis, brought on by a clinical magnesium deficiency. The pH in my blood was going down to acid. The cure was simply to start taking a magnesium supplement and that fixed me overnight.

With that solved I needed to address all of the weight I'd put on, so I began a work out regimen that same February. And I kept at it. I just turned 40 last month, in the best shape of my life.

There are a lot of virtues to being fit, beyond looking fit. I have more energy, and just feel great throughout the whole day. I'm not just strong, I feel strong and it is a great feeling! I'm also less susceptible to random annoyances, like digestion problems. I intend to continue to lift weights and do cardio as a means of combating aging. I would like to strongly encourage others to try it as well. Working out sucks, but the benefits are enormous!

For anyone that cares more about the new Apple toys: There's a new Watch that is more like a watch, but still doesn't do anything that justifies itself or its price. There's a new iPad that's the lowest-tier iPad, with the lowest-tier bezel. There's a trio of new phones that are faster than last year's old phones.

Audeonic's StreamByter is Now Free

Audeonic has announced that his StreamByter app will now be free. Good news for you, but bad news for Nic.

Released last year as a spin-off AUv3 from MidiFire, the niche app allows users to create custom MIDI effects. Nearly a full year later Bram Bos released Mozaic, a very similar app that sat at a price point of exactly $1 less than StreamByter.

Sales of StreamByter slowed to a trickle in the following months. Nic shared his sales data with me for this article. In the last 30 days Audeonic sold 6 copies of StreamByter, and one of those was refunded. Faced with competition in this tiny niche of a tiny niche, Audeonic had some tough choices to make. He could have started a price war as they raced to the bottom, by pricing StreamByter below Mozaic. At that point his profits would have been next to nothing anyhow, so he's just giving it away.

In the last 24 hours he's had more downloads of StreamByter than it achieved in the last 12 months.

Bram Bos was kind enough to share his sales data with me for the sake of comparison. In the 3 months since its release, Mozaic is averaging less than 100 sales in a month. After Apple's cut, and taxes, Bram takes in €2 per unit. Less than €600 is a tiny payoff for the amount of work that goes into making an app.

He notes that Mozaic also requires a lot of customer support, so factor that into the total time committed to the app for a €2 pay day.

Everyone knows, and I've said it many times before, that our current app economy is unsustainable. Today marks only the latest victim of that unsustainability. Nic has revealed that he doesn't intend to release any new apps. After over 8 years of independent music app development, it just isn't economically feasible for him to continue. We as consumers need to take note. We need to pay developers a fair wage if we want them to continue to bring us great apps. Developers need to feel that they can charge whatever it takes to recoup their time invested. Otherwise making apps for us in this tiny niche is a waste of their time, energy, and talent.

Let's Play with ANILOG

ANILOG's colorful interface grabbed my attention this week, and pulled me into it's fun 80's sounds! Once again we have a new iOS synth that continues to innovate, offering a unique sound design method.

Video Description:

Amy Lee's second app is a truly unique synth tailored towards making lively 80's sounds.

If you've enjoyed this series please consider supporting it by becoming a Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/discchord If you'd prefer to help on a monthly basis, instead of per video, there is a monthly Patreon campaign: https://www.patreon.com/discchord_com Or you can support me on Timmeon if you don't like Patreon: https://discchord.com/supporters#timmeon (Patrons of these campaigns get the same benefits, including Ad Free viewing on the site!)

Gnubesoft: Anyone Can Program

Today I'm proud to announce the launch of my third major website. Gnubesoft! In addition to being a catch-all for my various coding projects, Gnubesoft is where I'll be teaching programming.

Some of you may think that you don't want to program. You may even be annoyed that I'm now posting programming tutorials to my YouTube channel. For this reason I start the new series with a video explaining all of the reasons you want to strongly consider it! The first being that programming is fun!

I'm going to be focusing on that aspect in the same way I share my love of synthesis and music production. Solving challenges and making computers do things is a great hobby, and it might just save your life. I shit you not.

We are past Peak Jobs. Between corporate consolidation and career obsolescence we are shedding jobs left and right. Some industries are no longer necessary. Retail stores are closing by the thousands, and Malls are quickly being abandoned. To add to this crisis, automation is already upon us and is threatening many more careers. You might be thinking of truckers and taxi drivers, but they're not the only ones. Solid, high-paying, careers are threatened too. It is estimated that by the 2030's there will be 38%-50% fewer jobs.

If you're unemployed you can't buy apps, and if you can't buy apps I can't sell ads. This is an existential crisis, and I'm taking a very long view towards remedying it. You can be annoyed that my YouTube channel is now featuring stuff you don't care about, but you have to respect the Long Con.

The series starts the same way I launched discchord, with a proclamation that, "Anyone Can Program!" I go on to explain in detail, with charts, all of the reasons you should get interested. If you're already interested you can skip ahead to the second video, Introduction to Python. The third video, Automate the Criminal Stuff, is essentially Episode 1 and is more representative of how other videos in the series will be.

Don't Eat The Brown Acid or Update iOS

When I first started this site the only time people would call me a journalist was when they were being angry at me. Usually in the context of, "You asshole! How can you report on my shady business and still call yourself a journalist?" Over the years I've grown into the role, and welcome the responsibilities it implies.

Warning off against iOS updates is the only time this duty burdens my shoulders. I feel like a broken record. I also feel it is important to stand up as a voice of caution against the reckless allure of the novel. I get it. I like new shiny things too. But please, do not update your iOS willy-nilly. This warning includes point releases; as fans of Audiobus discovered over the weekend.

iOS 12.4 broke IAA. There was a change that impacts the way an app signifies its availability for Recording into. Fortunately Michael Tyson was able to patch the Audiobus database with a workaround, requiring users to manually "Tap to Launch" the recording app. A complete fix will require every recording app to submit a new update with the relevant changes.

This serves as a good example of why I'm always repeating myself on this issue. No one expects a point release to suddenly break anything. But they can, and they have.

Thanks to reader Simon for being the first to point out this issue to me.

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