Rob Fahrni

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Saturday Morning Coffee

Good morning from Charlottesville, Virginia! ☕️

Spicy Mexican CoffeeIt’s been pouring overnight and into this morning. We have a flood watch in effect until 10AM. I bet it extends.

I finally got the opportunity to do a little async/await Swift this week. Using a combination of generics, Decodable, and async/await makes for an extremely powerful network client. It’s pretty shocking how simple it was to combine those three items to form a set of methods that return fully decoded models with so few lines of code and zero blocks/closures/whatever you call them in your favorite language.

I’m sure some folks will laugh and say “We’ve had that for X years in language Y!” I get it. It’s fairly new to Swift and I’m finally getting to work with it properly.

I’ve also been dabbling with SwiftUI and find some of the concepts weird, but as with all moves to new frameworks or languages, I’ll pick it up and it’ll feel natural at some point.

It’s past time to get my first cup of coffee. I hope you enjoy the links.

Kyle Barr • Gizmodo

Everything Announced at Google I/O: Gemini Takes Over

The week was Google’s Developer Conference. I’m not too much into Google or Android for that matter and while I know LLM’s are here to stay I’m not deep minded enough to find them exciting. Super smart developers find it exciting because they’re challenging in a way they grok and Management find them exciting because they’re a way to do more with fewer people and charge you a ton of money for it. 🤣

Hey, I just want to hack away on my little iOS and Mac Apps and build something I love that I hope others will too. I’m sure someday I’ll have to integrate an LLM into an app. 🤖

Raymond Chen • The Old New Thing

In other words, take the existing component and run it before making any changes to it at all. Does it work?

I’ve said it before so I’ll say it again: Raymond Chen is a gift to computing and Microsoft is fortunate to have him.

He’s done so much for Microsoft and the tools we use everyday so when he shares his pearls of wisdom, I listen.

Baldur Bjarnason

React, Electron, and LLMs have a common purpose: the labour arbitrage theory of dev tool popularity

This was a very interesting read and I found myself nodding in agreement a lot but I also disagreed with things.

Something that does bother me about the move to more abstract tooling is the loss of expertise about the platform and knowing the platform provided tools will be the best for solving problems and creating the best possible apps I’m capable of.

Of course you can still make a crummy app with native tools and a brilliant app with tools like React Native.

When I was a Windows developer I could always tell when an application was written in Classic Visual Basic because of how the windows drew. It was a dead giveaway. That always bothered me. Nothing against Classic Visual Basic, it was a native development tool, and you could be extremely productive with it. Just like modern web tooling being used everywhere.

Chris Kirkham • Reuters

The meeting could not have gone worse. Musk, the employees said, was not pleased with Tinucci’s presentation and wanted more layoffs. When she balked, saying deeper cuts would undermine charging-business fundamentals, he responded by firing her and her entire 500-member team.

Musk isn’t a genius. He’s a bully who wins by being an asshole to folks until he gets his way. During the entire charging team over a plan he didn’t agree with is a prime example of how big a baby man he really is.

Why Tesla keeps him around is beyond me. Jettison the man so he can go work on X so you can continue to lead in the EV space. Who needs a network of cars being used for their compute so some dude and do AI stuff with it? What?

How about getting Tesla to do more good for the world by building trucks for hauling large loads across country or building all electric high speed rail systems and busses. You know, mass transport.

Musk talks about a desire to save mankind but he’s only paying lip service to it as far as I can tell. He is obviously obsessed with making crap tons of money and getting his way at the expense of others.

Joseph Savona, Ricky Hanlon, Andrew Clark, Matt Carroll, and Dan Abramov •

React Compiler is no longer a research project: the compiler now powers in production, and we are working to ship the compiler across additional surfaces at Meta and to prepare the first open source release.

I need to go read more about this React Compiler or at the very least get the lowdown from a friend. I wonder if this will come to the React Native world and if it does what would that look like? Would we get everything compiled down to Web Assembly we push through a mobile device JavaScript runtime?

Duct Tape, fixer of all things!Web stuff is such a hodge-podge of stuff. It’s like the duct tape and baling wire of development.

I consider myself a duct tape a baling wire developer, so that’s not an insult to me. 😃

Robert Reich

America’s second civil war? It’s already begun

I try to stay away from links to Substack articles but I thought this River Reich article was important enough to break my rule.

If the Orange Menace gets back in office I’d fully expect us to see skirmishes break out all over the country at times due to his draconian policies.

Full on war would only break out if things get bad enough the people finally stand up and say enough is enough.

I hope beyond hope we can keep Joe Biden in the White House for four more years and TFG goes away, either to jail, Russia, or succumbs to a natural end.

Having said that we’re going to be fighting against authoritarian MAGA’s for years and years to come. Here’s hoping the GOP comes to its senses and stops this horseshit.

Federico Viticci • MacStories

Still, as I was thinking about my usage of the iPad and why I enjoy using the device so much despite its limitations, I realized that I have never actually written about all of those “limitations” in a single, comprehensive article.

Nice piece that goes into the things Federico finds lacking on iPad. My knee jerk reaction is to think “just move back to a Mac” but folks should do what they want and complaining about the state of things is the only real power they have to hopefully influence Apple to make changes.

I’m still a big fan of Federico’s FrankenMac or MonsterPad, whatever you’d like to call it, it’s extremely cool so of course Apple will never do it. It would poach sales from Mac and iPad and they certainly want you to purchase both, separately. 🧌

David Zipper • Fast Company

Last week, General Motors announced that it would end production of the Chevrolet Malibu, which the company first introduced in 1964. Although not exactly a head turner (the Malibu was “so uncool, it was cool,” declared the New York Times), the sedan has become an American fixture, even an icon, appearing in classic films like Say Anything and Pulp Fiction. Over the past 60 years, GM produced some 10 million of them.

This is really weird to see from American car companies. Why abandon the sedan? Well it’s because American’s are ridiculous. We want the biggest darned cars we could possibly fit on the road.

For me personally I’d really love to have a $10k or less, limited range, EV. It could be small, that’s fine. It would be for running errands and commuting into town, not that I have a commute any longer but if I did I’d like a super economical EV.

Something like this. Would I prefer to buy a ‘Murican version of one, heck yeah! Will a ‘Murican company build one, heck no! 😄


The recent news that the NFL is in negotiations with Netflix (!!!) for the two Christmas Day games this year really made my blood boil. I mean, I shouldn’t be surprised. The league has been slowly chipping away at fans’ goodwill for years. But the fact that Netflix (!!!) is involved makes it extra offensive.

Professional sporting is just as greedy as any other business. They’re there to make money, not just break even, they want to make crap tons of money. This is how they do it. They make deals with the highest bidder. If that means selling the rights to some special games at jacked up rates, it’s what they’re gonna do.

Fans be damned.

The Eclectic Light Company

The only clue given by Apple comes in a single word buried in the sentence “Share code between apps on multiple platforms with views and controls that adapt to their context and presentation.” The key word there is adapt. SwiftUI is a forceful move in delivering an adaptive human interface, one that adapts to the user, the task, the data, and the platform.

Really nice piece on using SwiftUI and how it’s built to adapt to each device, at least that’s the idea.

I also like that it points out there’s nothing wrong with UIKit and AppKit.

Heck, one of the most beautiful, high quality, iOS apps made today is Ivory from Tapbots and last I heard it’s still written in Objective-C on UIKit and AppKit. No need to throw out perfectly good code in favor of an expensive rewrite for the sake of the new hotness.

Tiny Apple Core