ReStuff

StuffIt is the de-facto standard for file archiving and compression on Mac OS before OS X. Most old Macintosh software is preserved in StuffIt format, but a format change in StuffIt 5 makes archives created in this version unreadable in older versions of StuffIt. Since StuffIt 3.5 is the last version that works on System 6, many archives cannot be opened on compact Macs running System 6.

ReStuff is a SaaS that automatically converts StuffIt version 4 & 5 archives to a format readable in StuffIt 3.

This tool solves a big problem I’ve run in to getting software for my vintage gear.

Joshua Stein also has a C Programming on System 6 video series where he’s trying to make an IMAP client for System 6.

Working from home at 25MHz: You could do worse than a Quadra 700 (even in 2020)

Despite these shortcomings, the Quadra 700 reinforced some of the same conclusions from my timing roadtesting a refurbished Macintosh IIsi some time ago. The gap between an ‘040 powered Mac and modern PCs doesn’t feel nearly as wide as it should. This computer was released almost 30 years ago. On paper, it should be inconceivable that this can at all fit into a modern workflow. Present-day computers are gigascale monstrosities that should smoke something as old and plucky as the Quadra. And yet, they just… don’t.

Computers today weld supercomputer levels of power by the standards of the Quadra 700, but they don’t seem any faster in terms of responsiveness for the end user doing normal tasks like typing in a word processor.

Dan Luu measured response latency in some vintage modern hardware and the results are surprising.

Your Move iPad

Power and performance aren’t the bottleneck for iPad, and haven’t been for some time. So if raw power isn’t enough, and new display tech isn’t enough, where does the iPad go from here? Will it be abandoned once more, lagging behind the Mac in terms of innovation, or will Apple continue to debut its latest tech in this form factor? Is it headed toward functional parity with the Mac or will it always be hamstrung by Apple’s strict App Store policies and seemingly inconsistent investment in iPadOS?

I enjoy using my iPad Pro but not as a professional. The developer profession has never been a target market for the iPad, and Apple’s own development environment doesn’t even run on it. Well, I guess there’s Swift Playgrounds.

I think the tablet is a great form factor, but my ideal tablet future is either a Mac tablet or an iPad running macOS. And with Apple Silicon now powering Macs, what’s the difference between those two futures?

First Day with an Apple Silicon Mac

My Mac mini with Apple Silicon arrived. I went with 16GB of RAM and a 1TB SSD configuration. I am excited about this transition not just because of the massive jump is performance, but because it feels like the Mac platform is taking center stage again.

I did hit a few snags with the hardware and operating system on my first day. It wasn’t a simple drop-in replacement for my 2018 Mac mini on my desk, and one of the first things I wanted to understand was how to reinstall or factory erase macOS on Apple Silicon.

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Impressions of the Magic Keyboard and iPad Pro

When the iPad first came out in 2010, I immediately bought one. Holding it and interacting with it felt like a revelation. This was the future of computing.

As the years went by and I upgraded to newer models of the iPad, I never really felt the same excitement. The software experience felt like it stagnated. I used it more for reading and watching videos than anything productive.

The iPad Pro without the keyboard the same excitement the original iPad made me feel. The feel of the machine, the bit larger screen and using Face ID to unlock it feels like the future of computing again. I’m curious if the addition of the Magic Keyboard and Apple Pencil can keep the experience elevated above just a consumption device.

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