Updated: Face ID Demo Fail

David Pogue has received new information from Apple regarding the demo. Apparently, before the keynote began, the iPhone X was being set up for the demo by several apple employees. While being set up, the iPhone X repeatedly scanned these employees’ faces and tried to authenticate via Face ID. Then, “After failing a number of times, because they weren’t Craig, the iPhone did what it was designed to do, which was to require his passcode.” Mystery solved.

Original Story:
Yesterday Apple revealed the new iPhone X. The high end (read: expensive) new flagship ditches the home button in favor of an all screen device. The removal of the home button also means the removal of Touch ID. In its place, Apple introduced Face ID. The new system uses advanced cameras to authenticate a user’s identity. Face ID will be used both to unlock iPhone and for Apple Pay, so it is incredibly important that Face ID works well.

Unfortunately, the first demonstration of Face ID was anything but magical. Instead of working seamlessly, Face ID failed, which required the use of a backup iPhone X. The failure fueled speculation that Face ID is unreliable and a poor substitute for Touch ID.

I suggest reserving judgment until the final device ships. For one, iPhone X does not ship until November. In the interim, Apple has time to put the final touches on the Face ID software. Number two, many of the demos provided after the keynote worked perfectly. There is even speculation that the on-stage failure occurred because the first iPhone X demo unit had not first been unlocked via passcode after being turned on. Even Touch ID requires the passcode be entered when the device is first turned on before allowing a finger print unlock. Lastly, Touch ID isn’t perfect either. Just this morning my iPhone 7 failed to unlock with my finger print, requiring two more attempts before Touch ID worked successfully. No solution is perfect, so let’s wait until the final device ships before comparing Face ID with Touch ID.

Scott Forstall on Creation of iPhone

To celebrate the 10th anniversary of iPhone, the Computer History Museum held a panel with a few members of the original iPhone development team. The video above begins with this panel and discusses the history and development of iPhone. The second half of the video (starting at 1:05:40) features an interview with Scott Forstall, the former head of iOS. This is one of Forstall’s first public interviews since he was ousted from Apple after the Apple Maps debacle.

Liam Gallagher and Coldplay Perform “Live Forever”

Yesterday was the One Love Manchester concert to benefit the families of the Manchester bombing. Among many performers, Liam Gallagher took the stage to perform three songs. He ended with a strong performance of “Live Forever” that also featured Chris Martin of Coldplay. Watch above.

Foo Fighters Debut New Song: “The Sky is a Neighborhood”

Last night at a benefit concert, Dave Grohl debuted a new Foo Fighters song called “The Sky is a Neighborhood.” A fan shot video is embedded above. It will be interesting to see if the Foo Fighters debut more new songs later this month at BottleRock music festival in California.

No word yet on when the new Foo album is coming.

Desert Trip Not Happening in 2017

Quick story from Billboard. Billboard spoke with Paul Tollett, the founder of Coachella, and got some sad news. After grossing “$160 million over two weekends in October 2016,” Tollet and other organizers of Desert Trip have decided not to bring the festival back this year. This announcement quashes rumors of a stacked lineup, which included a Led Zeppelin reunion.

Tollet did leave the door open for the event to return in the future.

Paul McCartney April 2017 Q&A [video]

Interview with Paul McCartney from April 2017. Interesting tidbits from the video:

  • Favorite Song: Here, There and Everywhere.
  • He listens to music on CDs.
  • New album currently in the works, to be produced by 2017 producer of the year Greg Kurstin. Paul jokes that he is the one who gave Greg his start.
  • Current favorite artists: Dirty Projectors, Kanye West, Ariana Grande, “There are lots of them that I like.”
  • When asked if he was going to include some songs from Flowers in the Dirt on the tour’s setlist, he said he wanted to but was concerned with what songs would be knocked out of the setlist. Such a McCartney problem, too many songs to fit into a huge setlist.

Angela Ahrendts on Human Energy

I recently stumbled on an interesting TedX talk by Angela Ahrendts. The nearly 14 min talk focuses on human energy, bringing people together, and accomplishing great things. To Ahrendts, energy is the summation of three factors: trust, intuition and belief. But my summary won’t do the talk justice, click play and let it sink in.

Stream LCD Soundsystem’s new music: “Call the Police” and “American Dream”

Yesterday James Murphy took to Facebook to provide some updates on LCD Soundsystem’s new music. You can view his abridged post above, click ‘see more’ for the full message. A few big takeaways from the post.

  1. Two new songs were released at midnight. I’ve embedded the two tracks below. The first is called “Call the Police.” Similar to All My Friends, this track builds throughout. I expect it to be a great track at live shows. The second song is called “American Dream.” It’s very LCD, just listen.
  2. The new album is nearly finished. Just a little more mixing and mastering to go. The biggest time snag is going to be pressing the vinyl copies of the album, which James insists on being available on the same day the album is released. I hope that it will be finished by the time I see LCD play later this summer.
  3. James also included some thoughts on playing live shows. It’s interesting to read the struggle between playing small and large venues. Thus far I’ve never seen a pure LCD show, only festival performances, but I’m sure that experience is amazing.

If you’ve made it this far and haven’t started streaming the music below, start now. It’s good. It’s LCD, so of course it is good. Stream.

*Update: Click here to watch the new songs live on SNL*

Today at Apple

Today, Apple unveiled its new initiative that aims to bring dozens of educational opportunities to all Apple retail locations. Called “Today at Apple,” the sessions cover both basic and advanced topics. From photography to videography, and kids programs, Today at Apple has material for all people.

Interestingly, there will also be courses teaching coding:

Coding sessions are meant to introduce anyone to coding through Swift Playgrounds, an iPad app designed to make coding interactive and fun for beginners. These sessions will explore coding concepts with the same code professional developers use every day.

I think the coding courses provide a great way to expose children, and adults alike, to programming. By removing the stigma that a person is not technologically wired or able to code, Apple can promote a new mindset where coding is accessible to anyone.