Archive for July 12, 2023

Wednesday, July 12, 2023

Swift HTTP Types

Guoye Zhang et al. (via Quinn):

We’re excited to announce a new open source package called Swift HTTP Types.

Building upon insights from Swift on server, app developers, and the broader Swift community, Swift HTTP Types is designed to provide a shared set of currency types for client/server HTTP operations in Swift.


As the package matures, our goal is to replace SwiftNIO’s HTTPRequestHead and HTTPResponseHead as well as the HTTP message details of Foundation’s URLRequest and URLResponse.


Mac Sales in Q2 2023

Ben Lovejoy (Hacker News):

Mac shipments grew by more than 10% in the second quarter of the year, compared to the same period in 2022, according to a new market intelligence reports.

All major PC brands saw their own shipments fall in the same period, most by double digits[…] Apple’s growth in Mac shipments is said to in large part reflect constrained supply last year.

IDC says that Apple has an 8.6% share of shipments and that overall this was the “sixth consecutive quarter of contraction brought on by macroeconomic headwinds, weak demand from both the consumer and commercial sectors, and a shift in IT budgets away from device purchases.”

Note that these numbers are for the calendar Q2, which is not the same as Apple’s fiscal Q2 below.


Update (2023-07-13): Nick Heer:

The number of Mac shipments, as Goswami acknowledges, grew; it was not “markedly down” and did not “mirror […] the broader market”. It was the complete opposite. Market share is also up — from 6.8% to 8.6%. I might be reading this wrong, but it looks a little like the second paragraph here was prewritten in anticipation of a sales slide and Goswami forgot to delete it.

How Do You Request Music Using Siri?

Adam Engst:

Usually, I like to offer solutions in TidBITS articles, but when it comes to the black box of controlling Apple Music using Siri, I have no sense that my approach is ideal. So I’m going to describe my frustrations, and I hope those of you who have different approaches that work well for you will chime in with suggestions.


The best roundup I’ve found is at Smartenlight, though it’s still not entirely satisfying. The article is from December 2019, and quite a few of the commands didn’t work or worked sporadically for me. Your mileage may vary.


With voice commands directed to a HomePod, though, I have to figure out what I want to listen to without any visual reminders that might trigger a positive—or negative—response, and I’m not happy with how well I’m doing that. I find that I listen to a relatively small subset of music simply due to the limited details I can bring to mind at any given time. Of course, I could pull out my iPhone and scroll through the Music app whenever I wanted to play music—and I do that occasionally, but it’s too much work most of the time.


But given that Apple doesn’t promote how it’s using machine learning to play the best music for you at any given moment, I suspect that it’s nowhere near what the company has done with computational photography and other ML-driven photography features.

It would be nice if HomePod supported Genius playlists. It doesn’t even support my regular playlists. Aside from general reliability issues, the main problems I have with Siri are that many music commands that work on my iPhone don’t work on HomePod and that it can’t answer questions about which music is available in my library. So I pretty much always request music from Marvis on my phone.


HomePod Sound Recognition

Benjamin Mayo:

By taking advantage of the always-on microphone inside the HomePod, it means you don’t need to necessarily invest in buying new internet-connected smoke alarm systems — HomePod can simply enhance the utility of the existing “dumb” offline smoke alarms already installed in your home.

To enable Sound Recognition, open the Home app and go to Home Settings -> Safety & Security screen.

It then sends a notification to your devices if it hears the alarm.


Update (2023-07-28): bcFromSanJose:

HomePod Alarms detected that my smoke alarms were going off and Siri told me in my AirPods Pro. I ran back and discovered a forgotten jar candle had gone nuts. Roaring flames, quickly extinguished.

Apple literally saved my apartment from burning down.