The BirchTree Podcast

All the things I love but are not fit to print on BirchTree (not that that's a bad thing!).
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The BirchTree Podcast


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Sep 18, 2018

It was over 3 months in the marking, so yeah, I’m taking an episode to walk through the tools and process I used to get it all done ;)

Sep 17, 2018

My complete review of watchOS 5. Check out the full written review here.

Sep 14, 2018

I recorded today's episode on about 4 hours of sleep, but I was indeed able to order myself a new iPhone and Apple Watch. If the fates are kind, they'll both be here in a week. Here's what I got and why I got it.

Sep 12, 2018

Apple had their big September event today where they announced a new Apple Watch and 3 new iPhones. These are my impressions literally seconds after the keynote ended.

Sep 10, 2018

An iPhone lives and dies on its quality, not its name.

Sep 7, 2018

The "post-PC era" sure is taking a long time to get here.

Sep 4, 2018

In a turn of events I'm rocking a completely different Surface computer since the last time we talked. I not have a Surface Pro which I'm hoping will be a better fit for me than the underpowered Surface Go.

Aug 22, 2018

The Windows-centric tech press is talking about the Surface Go's perfjoamcne in terms of "what more could you expect from a $400 tablet?" The answer is incredibly obvious, the $329 iPad, and I think makes the Go look worse than it would in a Windows-only vacuum.

Like the show? Please consider supporting it on Patreon.

Aug 20, 2018
  • Amount of work for a blog post: minimal
  • Amount of work for a podcast: a bit, but not terrible
  • Amount of work for a video: for-freaking-ever

Support the show on Patreon!

Aug 16, 2018

The biggest question surrounding the Surface Go since its launch a few weeks ago is how well it performs. I didn't want to weigh in too early on this one, but I feel like I know what this device is and I need to talk about this.

Aug 14, 2018

The Surface Go is only making me appreciate my iPad more, but it's also making me feel a little less enthusiastic about the mobile Mac lineup. If the Mac is going to stick around for the long haul, I'd love to see Apple start to play around more with the form factors they offer, because this Surface is making me desperately want a Mac in this type of hardware.

Aug 11, 2018

The Microsoft Surface Go definitely still runs the same Windows we know and love(?).

Aug 7, 2018

I've spent a couple days with the Surface Go, my first Surface device, and I, of course, have a few thoughts.

Aug 2, 2018

Apple sent out an email last night that was crushing to a lot of people in the Apple community. They are ending their affiliate program for the App Store. This was a reliable, important revenue source for many creators out there, and this program's demise means that a lot of these people are going to have to reassess how they make a living.

Of course one should diversify their income as much as possible, but this is a big hit to people who do this as a passion, and it's even harder on those who put food on the table with this revenue.

The world will go on and people will figure out ways to make money, but this is a tough day.

Jul 31, 2018

Apple will announce their Q3 2018 financials, and I am as mildly interested as always. So instead of talking about the numbers (they're not out yet!) today I'm talking about how those numbers can and can't be used in debates on how good specific products that Apple makes.

The fact Apple makes billions of dollars a quarter on iPhones doesn't mean the iPhone is without fault. At the same time, the fact sales are going up likely indicates Apple is prioritizing the features that customers are looking for, as they convince more people to buy them.

I argue with myself a little in this episode, as it's a hard thing to nail down, especially if you are not a pro.

Jul 30, 2018

There have been people asking Apple to switch the iPhone and iPad to USB-C for years now, and Apple seems as uninterested as ever in actually doing this. Today I pondered why that is and if we can expect to see them change their tune in the near future. I’m skeptical, to say the least.

Jul 25, 2018

Sometimes I fail to understand why people make the tech decisions they make. It seems so clear to me what the best smartphone or laptop is, but most of the world gets something different. I always have to remind myself that the way I look at a hammer is how many people look at computers: I need one, but I don’t really care that much about getting “the best,” I just need something that works.

Jul 24, 2018

Ulysses has been my writing app of choice for years, and I get questions about it all the time. I know writing apps are very personal, and what makes an app great for me might not make it great for you, but here are some of the things that make Ulysses the undisputed king of writing apps for me.


Download from the App Store

Jul 23, 2018

I'm launching a Patreon and you can sign up for it right now! Take a listen to the episode for the details, and the blog post (below) goes into more details about what I'm trying to accomplish with this.

This may work or it may be a dud, but I had to try. I really want to use Patreon to enhance the quality of work I can produce for you, so let me know any feedback you have.


Blog post announcement

Jul 12, 2018

Apple updated the MacBook Pro lineup today and I'm just over here doing my best to generate any personal excitement for these new machines. My heart just isn't in it for the Mac right now, it's all iOS for me right now.

Jul 10, 2018

People have different ideas for what "automation" means on iOS and Android, and it can have a negative impact on how we talk to each other about our respective automation services. As someone who lives in both worlds, hopefully I can clear things up a little. for all your Shortcuts needs.

Jul 5, 2018

Apple announced they are doing a major overhaul of their map data and it reminded me that there is a ton going on in the world that we have no visibility to, even at companies we follow intensely. Smart to give yourself a little wiggle room and stay away from definitive statements when it comes to future plans.

Jul 2, 2018

I got a Nest Thermostat over the weekend. It's my first foray into smart thermostats and my initial impressions are really positive.

Jun 27, 2018

Sometimes a passion project you do on the side pays off in your regular day-to-day life. I have had this happen a few times in the past couple years and I find it to be incredibly rewarding every time. I was reminded of this phenomenon this week as I had to step slightly outside my product shoes and do some iOS development work at my 9-5 job.

Passion projects give you new skills and you never know when those skills will be useful down the line. If you find something fun, do it now for fun and you might be lucky enough to have someone pay you to do it in the future.

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