Archive for January 4, 2019

Friday, January 4, 2019 [Tweets] [Favorites]

Mac App Store Links Prompt to Review

Jeff Johnson found that, on macOS 10.14, if you follow a Mac App Store URL that contains an affiliate token, the store will try to have you review the app. I am seeing this as well, and it’s especially annoying in the common case of an app you’ve never seen before, because then you get an alert window telling you, the dumb user, that you can’t review apps you don’t own.

It was easy for me to fix my own links to the store, since they all go through an Apache redirect. The affiliate tokens are now useless, anyway. But I can’t do anything about links that other sites have posted.

Previously: Apple Removes Apps From Their Affiliate Program, Is There Hope for the Mac App Store?.

Mojave’s rsync From the Days of Tiger

Florian Dejako:

macOS Mojave from today still includes rsync 2.6.9 from 12 years ago. rsync 3.1.3 from 2018 is available with numerous improvements.

I guess this is probably a licensing issue, since rsync uses the GPL 3. But what is Apple’s long-term plan here? Continuing to ship progressively more out-of-date Unix tools? Is there no way a company with its resources could resolve the patents issue, if that is in fact the sticking point? Or find a technical solution?

Sivan Michaeli-Roimi:

The GPLv3 contains an explicit patent license, according to which people who license a program under the GPL license both copyrights as well as patents to the extent that this is necessary to use the code licensed by them. A comprehensive patent license is not thereby granted. Furthermore, the new patent clause attempts to protect the user from the consequences of agreements between patent owners and licensees of the GPL that only benefit some of the licensees (corresponding to the Microsoft/Novell deal). The licensees are required to ensure that every user enjoys such advantages (patent license or release from claims), or that no one can profit from them.

Previously: An Aging Collection of Unix Tools.

New MoneyWell Developer

MoneyWell:

MoneyWell has been taken over by Diligent Robot. We’re huge fans of MoneyWell and have been for many years, so when we heard that it had been a little neglected and needed some love, we jumped at the chance.

MoneyWell:

We would love to hear from you if you still use MoneyWell, have recently stopped or stopped long ago. What do/did you love? What needs/needed improving?

MoneyWell:

We know it’s going to take some time to regain your trust, but we hope we can return MoneyWell to its former glory.

The previous developer kept the app working, but I got worried when it started crashing for me last month and I realized that it hadn’t been updated in over a year.

I had not heard of Diligent Robot; they seem to be a small iOS consulting company. Alas, my crash logs are useless to them because the current shipping build is stripped, and they don’t have its symbols.

Previously: The Future of No Thirst Software.

Throwing Storage at the Problem

Andy Ihnatko:

Someday, you’re going to spot on online deal for an external drive at a time when you happen to be flush with cash and with no financial perils on the horizon. You should buy that drive. When it arrives, stick it in a closet. Don’t even open the box.

Why? Because having a fresh, empty drive empowers so many solutions to PC problems.

Fully endorsed: you should have an extra drive—not one you are relying on for backups—that you have no hesitation in erasing so that you can use it to solve whatever problem crops up. But don’t leave it unopened. First, you want to make sure that it works, didn’t come with bad sectors, etc. Second, you can periodically prime it with a clone your boot drive. Depending on your emergency need, you can always quickly erase it if necessary. But if it turns out that you need to use it as a replacement boot drive, having even a month-old clone means you’re just a quick SuperDuper Smart Update away from being back in business.

Option 2: Skip the stopgap solution and replace the internal SSD straight away. This would have been the obvious answer if this were any other $2000 laptop. Alas, I am blessed with an Apple product. This blessing is accompanied by the unavailability of standard upgrade and replacement components.

How I miss that iBook (Dual USB), where you could literally swap in your backup drive.