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Josh Centers

Josh Centers

Josh Centers is the managing editor of TidBITS, as well as the author of Take Control of iOS 13 and iPadOS 13, Take Control of Notes, Take Control of Apple Home Automation, and Take Control of Apple TV, and co-author of Take Control of Preview. He's also a contributor to The Prepared and USA TODAY.

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Improve Your Seed Starting with HomeKit

If you garden, it’s time to think about starting seedlings indoors in many parts of the world. “Take Control of Apple Home Automation” author Josh Centers shows how you can use HomeKit to help.

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Malwarebytes Reports on the State of Mac Malware in 2020

Malwarebytes Labs has published its annual report on the state of malware in the computer industry, with a section focusing on the Mac. The good news is that the number of malware detections is down 38% and very little detected Mac malware is dangerous; the bad news is that Apple’s security enhancements have made it harder to remove potentially unwanted programs (PUPs).

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Why Facebook Blocked Australian News Sites

Mike Masnick of TechDirt explains why everyone is mad at Facebook for cutting off links to Australian news sites, even though Australian publishers accused Facebook of taking advantage of them by linking to them.

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New Model M Is an American-Made Keyboard That Puts a Spring Back in Your Typing

The classic IBM Model M keyboard has been reborn in Kentucky, and you can even get one that’s customized for the Mac.

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Ring Security Cameras Adding End-to-End Encryption

After several privacy controversies and pressure from the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Amazon is rolling out end-to-end encryption for its Ring video doorbells.

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Backblaze’s 2020 Hard Drive Reliability Statistics

Backblaze has again released annual hard drive statistics that report on the company’s hard drive reliability stats for 2020. In spite of everything else that happened last year, hard drives became more reliable.

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Apple Replacing Some Batteries in 2016 and 2017 MacBook Pro Models

If your 2016 or 2017 MacBook Pro won’t charge past 1%, Apple will replace the battery for free, and the company recommends installing macOS 11.2.1 Big Sur or macOS Catalina 10.15.7 Supplemental Update to prevent it from happening to other devices.

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How Tim Cook Steered Apple to New Heights… and Dependence on China

Bloomberg Businessweek has explored Tim Cook’s tenure at Apple, with insights on how he’s made the company more profitable and dominant—but also more reliant on China.

Josh Centers 8 comments

How to Manage Breathe Notifications on the Apple Watch

If you wear an Apple Watch, do you notice the Breathe notifications popping up when you want them the least? Thankfully, they’re easy to make less intrusive or turn off entirely.

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macOS 11.2 Big Sur Improves Bluetooth, Squashes Bugs

Apple has released macOS 11.2 Big Sur to stamp out a handful of miscellaneous bugs and close numerous security holes.

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Apple in 2020: The Six Colors Report Card

Jason Snell of Six Colors has published his annual Apple report card, featuring ratings and quotes from a select group of Apple commentators, including many from right here at TidBITS.

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Apple’s Data Privacy Day Touts Privacy Efforts

Apple has dedicated a day to celebrate some of its new privacy features. Meanwhile, Facebook is planning to sue over them.

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Apple Celebrates Black History Month

Apple is putting in maximum effort for this year’s upcoming Black History Month, celebrating it across many of its services and introducing a special Apple Watch and Sport Band.

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watchOS 7.3, iOS 14.4, iPadOS 14.4, and tvOS 14.4 Address Serious Security Exploit

Apple has updated watchOS, iOS, iPadOS, and tvOS to fix a troubling security vulnerability that may have been actively exploited in the wild and deal with a few nagging bugs. Plus, watchOS 7.3 adds a new African-themed face for Black History Month. The HomePod mini also gets U1-enhanced handoffs from recent iPhones.

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Why Are Webcams So Lousy?

Why does the image quality from computer webcams compare so poorly to even the front-facing cameras on old iPhones? Jeff Carlson explores the economics of webcams and points out all the ways they’re bad.