YMUG Newsletter — 2020/02/23

YMUG Newsletter — for the 23rd of February, 2020.  Got coronavirus yet?

A collection of news and views, rants and raves, and some goofy stories compiled by Jerad Zimmermann, Esq.



Because I mentioned on mactalk a couple of weeks ago that we had ‘lost’ our dog, Baxter, and a lot of people responded I thought I’d mention: we got a two-month old puppy, a border collie, we’ve named Bandit.  Already registered and seen by the local vet and already registered with the insurance company PetPlan and a pet chip registering company, he is pretty bouncy and very, very cute.  Any and all advice gratefully accepted: news@ymug.org

And now, on with the show!!



The app I use to download material from the BBC (and YouTube and just about every other site) is Downie and it was just updated to version 4.  With the exception of a stupid ‘black mode’ thing it’s faster and better than before.  I cannot recommend it highly enough.


It costs about £16 new (less to upgrade from a previously version) unless you’re a SetApp subscriber in which case it’s part of the subscription.  Nicely enough, when I got the upgrade notice they were quick to point out that I could continue to use version 3 if I wanted.  But I’m glad I upgraded.  You can try it for free for . . . I’m not sure.



You can have up to three alias email accounts associated with your Apple iCloud account which is a handy way to keep personal and business and shopping interests separate.  I just get a whole new email address.  I have a ton.  Too many probably.


Stop reading if you’ve heard this before: how to recover lost or deleted iCloud drive files or documents.


Here’s a good list of things you can do to improve your online security.


Two password manager apps I’ve not heard of . . . Bitwarden Vs. LastPass Review: which Is better?  Any of you tried them?  Would you like to write a quick review for the newsletter?  Please?  Pretty please?  Pretty please with sugar on top?


Something I learned this last week: you can add the date and time to screenshots.  But I can’t remember how I did it.  Sigh.  (a few hours later . . . ) I remembered!  I used the Onyx or Deeper app from the excellent Titanium software!  Anyway, for reasons you don’t need to know (but I will tell you if you ask, nicely) I take a lot of screenshots and organising them is a pain-in-the-petunias.  But not anymore!  🙂

Four private DNS services to use on iOS and macOS.  Why does the story say “four” but the link say “5”? 


You’ve read this before: How to factory reset a MacBook Pro, and when to do it.


MacUpdater can automatically track the latest updates of all applications installed on your Mac. Launch our MacUpdater to see at a glance which of your apps are out-of-date. And with a simple click, you can update any outdated app.  So they say anyway.  I have not tried it. But it sounds like a good idea, especially if you have a lot of non-App Store apps.


Comparing two note-taking apps: Notion Vs. Evernote review – which is better?  I’ve never really got ‘into’ trying different note taking apps but I’m a sucker for a good email client/app/program.


How to delete all your mail and/or all your activity at Google.



This week’s blast from the past! February 19, 1990: Adobe ships the first commercial version of its soon-to-be-iconic Photoshop photo editing software.



Larry Tesler, the Apple employee who invented cut, copy and paste, has died at age 74.




Despite pushback from Apple, the European Parliament in January voted overwhelmingly for new rules to establish a common charging standard for mobile device makers across the European Union. This article explores what form the EU laws might ultimately take and how they could affect Apple device users in Europe and elsewhere.


Here’s another one of those ‘how to make your battery last longer’ lists.  This one is pretty complete.


How to automatically dial an extension on iPhone.


Apple Maps vs Google Maps. 


You have misplaced your phone, and you are worried you may have lost it or that someone stole it. You have called your phone, and you cannot hear it. And your spouse seems to think you need to learn a lesson about keeping track of your things.  After checking your car and the car park, you start to worry, but then you remember you have both Life360 and Find My iPhone apps on your phone.  So, the question begs, which of them is the better? Is Life360 the app you prefer, or does the simplicity of Find My iPhone most appeal to you?


How much is your iPhone worth now?  Not that much probably.




Following beta testing, Microsoft released its new Office app for iPhone, bringing together Word, Excel, and PowerPoint in a single app.


You may have noticed an article I shared a week or more ago about someone who hand-built a mobile phone with a rotary dial.  Well, you can now buy a kit to build one yourself.  I am a bit tempted I must admit.


The new Galaxy Z Flip is one of the most expensive phones you can buy right now but it doesn’t come with an ad-free experience.  Less than a week after the phone launched, new owners discovered that Samsung put advertisements directly into the phone app. Anytime Galaxy Z Flip users go to make a call on the device they paid for they’re greeted with ads based on places nearby.


And here’s a review:


Our modern times: families are photographing death at home. These photos may feel jarring on Facebook, but the practice itself has a long history.




Apple releases watchOS 6.1.3 update with heart rhythm notification bug fix.


How about some earbuds that look like elf ears?  No?  Are you sure?  Maybe you should look anyway, just in case.




I haven’t watched it yet but I just noticed that there was a BBC Panorama episode (available on iPlayer) called Amazon: What They Know About Us.  I’m afraid I might have to watch it from behind the sofa.

Google users in the UK might feel another effect of the Brexit process, and it’s one they may not have expected. According to Reuters, the tech giant is planning to place British users’ accounts under US jurisdiction, which means they’re losing the protections of the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation. As the news organisation notes, the GDPR is known for having one of the world’s strictest set of rules for data privacy and gives authorities the power to impose aggressive fines.


Some 23 iOS file-conversion apps used by 3 million people fail to encrypt documents.


During the last quarter of 2019, ClearSky research team has uncovered a widespread Iranian offensive campaign which we call “Fox Kitten Campaign”; this campaign is being conducted in the last three years against dozens of companies and organisations in Israel and around the world.  Though the campaign, the attackers succeeded in gaining access and persistent foothold in the networks of numerous companies and organisations from the IT, Telecommunication, Oil and Gas, Aviation, Government, and Security sectors around the world.



February 23rd is the 54th day of the year and is also The Emperor’s Birthday, birthday of Naruhito, the current Emperor of Japan.

Happy Birthday to:  Samuel Pepys, English diarist and politician (b 1633, d 1703); George Frideric Handel, German-English organist and composer (b 1685, d 1759); W. E. BDu Bois, American sociologist, historian, and activist (b 1868, d 1963); Victor Fleming, American director, cinematographer, and producer (b 1889, d 1949); Paul Tibbets, American general and pilot, bonus points if you know what he’s famous for without looking him up (b 1915, d 2007); Majel Barrett, American actress and producer (b 1932, d 2008); Peter Fonda, American actor, director, producer, and screenwriter (b 1940, d 2019); Bernard Cornwell, English author and educator (b 1944); Johnny Winter, American singer-songwriter, guitarist, and producer (b 1944, d 2014); Howard Jones, English singer-songwriter (b 1955); Linda Nolan, Irish singer and actress (b 1959); Helena Suková, Czech-Monacan tennis player (b 1965); Melinda Messenger, English model and television host (b 1971); Kelly Macdonald, Scottish actress (b 1976).

Rest in peace these folks who died on the 23rd of February:  Franciscus Vieta, French mathematician (b 1540, d 1603); Joshua Reynolds, English painter and academic (b 1723, d 1792); John Keats, English poet (b 1795, d 1821); John Quincy Adams, American politician, 6th President of the United States (b 1767, d 1848); Carl Friedrich Gauss, German mathematician, astronomer, and physicist (b 1777, d 1855); Edward Elgar, English composer and academic (b 1857, d 1934); Stan Laurel, English actor and comedian (b 1890, d 1965); L. S. Lowry, English painter (b 1887, d 1976); James Herriot, English veterinarian and author (b 1916, d 1995); Ofra Haza, Israeli singer-songwriter and actress (b 1957, d 2000); Stanley Matthews, English footballer and manager (b 1915, d 2000); Howie Epstein, American bass player with Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, songwriter, and producer (b 1955, d 2003); Katherine Helmond, American actress (b 1929, d 2019).

Some notable historic events that took place on February 23rd:  traditional date for the publication of the Gutenberg Bible, the first Western book printed with movable type (1455); at York Castle, the outlaw Dick Turpin is identified by his former schoolteacher. Turpin had been using the name Richard Palmer (1739); The Siege of the Alamo (prelude to the Battle of the Alamo) begins in San Antonio, Texas (1836); President-elect Abraham Lincoln arrives secretly in Washington, D.C., after the thwarting of an alleged assassination plot in Baltimore, Maryland (1861); Émile Zola is imprisoned in France after writing J’Accuse…!, a letter accusing the French government of antisemitism and wrongfully imprisoning Captain Alfred Dreyfus (1898); Cuba leases Guantánamo Bay to the United States “in perpetuity” (1903); First demonstrations in Saint Petersburg, Russia, the beginning of the February Revolution (March 8 in the Gregorian calendar) (1917); German theoretical physicist Werner Heisenberg writes a letter to fellow physicist Wolfgang Pauli, in which he describes his uncertainty principle for the first time (1927); Japanese submarines fire artillery shells at the coastline near Santa Barbara, California (1942); during the Battle of Iwo Jima, a group of United States Marines and a U.S. Navy hospital corpsman reach the top of Mount Suribachi on the island and are photographed raising the American flag (1945); International Organization for Standardization is founded (1947); the first mass inoculation of children against polio with the Salk vaccine begins in Pittsburgh (1954); the Symbionese Liberation Army demands $4 million more to release kidnap victim Patty Hearst (1974).



A Border collie in Norway learned the names and categories of her many, many toys, just by playing a game with her owners.  I’ll let you know how we get on with our new Border collie.


The marmots and me: The schoolboy, 8, who has struck up a remarkable friendship with a colony of alpine animals.


The Bank of England has begun the massive task of destroying £40bn-worth of paper banknotes, which will be replaced by new polymer £20 notes.

Around two billion paper notes will be withdrawn and recycled to be used as a soil improver for agriculture.  I wonder if they’re hiring?


‘Leaning Tower of Dallas’ becomes the city’s star attraction.  The demolition of an office tower on Sunday left behind the building’s core, leaning slightly. The new landmark has caused a stir on social media.


Dozens of protesters in a Ukrainian town have attacked buses carrying evacuees from coronavirus-hit China.


A town centre property with river frontage and far-reaching views has been snapped for a cool £1 at auction. Although it might seem like a bargain, the drawback is there is no way to get into the 12 sq m first-floor space.


A French ski resort has used helicopters to deliver snow after mild weather dried out its slopes, threatening it with closure.  The Luchon-Superbagnères resort in the Pyrenees arranged for around 50 tonnes of snow to be dropped on its slopes.


Internet jokers have turned a circular hole in a wall outside a bank into a tourist attraction.  Since December 2018, wags have been posting glowing reviews on TripAdvisor for the hole at NatWest in Ilkeston.


An art critic was mocking a $20,000 work she didn’t like — then it shattered.


How would you feel if your expenses were declined because your meal contained meat? That’s the situation at property developers Igloo.  Regeneration, where all corporate entertaining, workshop catering and even staff expenses must now be vegetarian if staff wish to be reimbursed.


Build-a-Bear is launching a Doctor Who line! Behold:


When Dan Cain went to pick up his mail at the Twinsburg, Ohio, post office, he was told to drive around back to pick it up. “I was shocked, are you kidding me, who makes that kind of mistake?” Cain asked. His mail filled 79 plastic bins — 55,000 identical copies of the same statement from the College Avenue Student Loan Company, where he and his wife had taken out a student loan for their daughter, arrived in 55,000 individual envelopes. It took him 2 trips to get them all home, where they all sit in Cain’s garage. The company apologised and said a glitch in their new outgoing mail system caused the deluge. To top it off, the statements used the wrong interest rate, so the company has to issue another statement. (MS/WOIO Cleveland)



Chief Bottle Washer and television reviewer — Tony Crockford: support@ymug.org

Head of Department of Redundancy Department — Chris Brady: ymug@csjbrady.org.uk

with help from: Anzir Boodoo and Tim Pinder.


Items for the newsletter . . . reviews, rants, raves, revelations and reflections to: Jerad Zimmermann, your participatory social mores editor: news@ymug.org

Thanks to Ian Thomas, Martin Pickering and Brendan Rowland who send me items of interest. And jokes.


Join mactalk – YMUG’s official email list discussion group.

You’ll get approximately 5 or 6 emails a day and can have ‘instant’ discussions on Mac related issues.  And other stuff, we’re flexible. By the way, if you’d rather have fewer emails there is a ‘digest’ version which concatenates all the daily emails into one.

To subscribe (FREE) to the group, send a blank email to: mactalk-join@ymug.org and then confirm membership when you receive an automated reply from the group,

If you have any difficulty, please contact Tony Crockford, he’s very nice, smart too.  And I happen to know he has excellent taste in music. –  support@ymug.org

mactalk posting guidelines written by the lovely Jo can be found at: https://ymug.org/category/articles



I’ve put the list of discounts up on the intertubes: The Take Control books are always available to MUG members for 30% off by the way.

(The page below is password protected which I can provide upon request.  And don’t give the link to non-YMUG members or some of the publishers will get ever so cross about it.)




YMUG Newsletter — 2020/02/16

YMUG Newsletter — for the 16th of February, 2020.  Got coronavirus yet?

A collection of news and views, rants and raves, and some goofy stories compiled by Jerad Zimmermann, Esq.


Lockdown launched last summer as the first open source firewall for iOS to block website and app trackers and it runs completely on-device. Now Lockdown has arrived for Mac as a free app.  If any of youse guys check this out let me know.


I was having a clear-out of old saved blog posts and I found this gem from a couple of years ago: 10 essential tips for using the macOS Finder more efficiently.  It’s a keeper.


Here’s another great tip from a while ago: How to make quick english-metric conversions using macOS Spotlight.


What do the F1, F2, F3, through F12 keys do on Mac keyboards?  I can’t always figure out the icons!!


Editing .pdf files with LibreOffice and Infix.


Working with Pins and Apple Maps.


Sending email with voice control.


Apple released a Catalyst-based Swift Playgrounds app for the Mac, which was built from the existing Swift Playgrounds app for the iPad.


What you need to know about SSD layer configurations.  If you don’t know what that is . . . maybe you don’t need to know?


Speaking of which: What’s the largest hard drive you can buy in these three categories: hard disk drives, solid state drives and flash storage.


StatusBuddy for macOS is a new app that makes it easy to quickly check the status of Apple’s various online services. If an Apple service is having problems, StatusBuddy makes it easy to quickly see the details of the issue.


Here’s another website building app: Blueprints Website Builder.


If you spend a lot of time browsing online, you might be wondering why your Chrome tabs keep refreshing, and whether there’s anything you can do to stop it. That annoying flickering out of the corner of your eye does drive some people mad. You might not know it, but Chrome has its own memory management function, known as “Tab Discarding and Reloading,” that helps to pause inactive tabs so they don’t use up too many resources.


How to change the default Google account.  How many Google accounts do I have?  Six?  Seven?  Something like that.


Hook is a macOS tool that connects all the parts of your work — or real — life together, whether they’re notes, emails, web pages, documents, or those never-ending to-do tasks.  There is a free trial and if you try it and figure out how it works let me know.  Tony and I had a go a couple of weeks ago and I don’t think we quite got it.


Popular email client Spark for iOS and Mac is out with an update today that brings a few new neat features including a Send Again feature that’s sure to save time and avatar support for Mac.


Download the new version of ‘Aerial,’ the best mac screensaver.  Trust me, it’s gorgeous.



How to unlock all iPhones.  While a lot of the information presented is geared towards American mobile providers there is some good stuff for us UKers.


How to enable low data mode on iPhone & iPad for wi-fi networks AND mobile data.



This week’s There’s An App For That: China has launched an app that allows people to check whether they have been at risk of catching the coronavirus.  The ‘close contact detector’ tells users if they have been near a person who has been confirmed or suspected of having the virus.


How to pick a hard drive for video editing on iPad.  What?  Really?  I guess.


How to unsubscribe from an app on your iPhone or iPad.


Speaking of which: Apple has added a new toggle to the top of the Subscriptions page on iPhone and iPad. By toggling the switch, users can choose not to receive email notifications every time a recurring In-App Purchase is charged.


With the release of iOS 11, Apple’s HEIC/HEIF file formats have given some users a bit of a headache. That’s not to say that there’s anything inherently wrong with this innovative format. After all, it boasts superior compression capabilities. But, it’s not as easy to read these files on every device. So, many users still need to convert their HEIC photos to regular JPEG, PNG, or other formats. The good news is that while this was difficult at first, it’s now become trivial. There are tons of HEIC converters you can appeal to, the majority of which are also free to use. Here are some top picks that won’t disappoint.


How to reverse image search with Google on iPhone; it’s not as easy as it should be.


Passengers on the Diamond Princess cruise ship, quarantined on board because of the coronavirus, are to be given iPhones for communication and information about the situation. Some 2,000 iPhones with a new medical consultation app are being provided by Softbank, and will be shared with one phone per cabin or crew quarters.


iPhone 11 Pro vs Samsung Galaxy S20 – $999 premium smartphones head-to-head



Hmm . . . not much to report this week.


A new report from Motherboard dives into a few iOS and Mac email apps/services that aren’t being very transparent about selling users’ personal data. Notably, one of them is even in Apple’s App Store ranked in the top 100 for productivity apps.


Political parties have left voter records exposed before, but seldom on this scale. Haaretz has learned that Likud, the party of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, uploaded Israel’s entire voter registry to the Elector voting management app, which had glaring security issues that effectively left the data wide open for days. You could even access the info through a web browser without tools or expertise. The collection included personal details (such as addresses and ID numbers) for nearly 6.5 million Israelis, including Netanyahu and other top politicians.


When London’s Metropolitan Police Department announced its decision to adopt the controversial and intrusive ClearView AI surveillance system at the end of January, a global cacophony of protest erupted. Concerns, fear and trepidation surrounding facial recognition technologies, especially those like Clearview which can ID people in real-time, have been simmering for decades, but the Met’s decision has finally caused public outrage to boil over.


The UK government wants to put Ofcom in charge of regulating social media. Digital secretary Nicky Morgan and home secretary Priti Patel said they were “minded” to appoint the watchdog due to its experience and “proven track record” overseeing the UK’s media and telecommunications industries.  This story was posted before the cabinet reshuffle so . . .


Apple’s Secure Enclave set a precedent in smartphone security that has so far been followed by many Android brands. A new research study found that Huawei, Samsung, Xiaomi, OnePlus, Vivo, LG, Oppo, and Sony all now have models with equivalent embedded hardware security features…


Puerto Rico’s government has lost more than $2.6 million after falling for an email phishing scam, according to a senior official. The finance director of the island’s Industrial Development Company, Rubén Rivera, said in a complaint filed to police Wednesday that the agency sent the money to a fraudulent account.


February 16th is the 47th day of the year and is also Day of the Shining Star (Kim Jong-il’s Birthday) in North Korea.

Happy Birthday to:  Ernst Haeckel, German biologist, physician, and philosopher (b 1834, d 1919); Hugo de Vries, Dutch botanist, geneticist, and academic (b 1848, d 1935); Eugénie Blanchard, French super-centenarian (b 1896, d 2010); Edgar Bergen, Swedish-American ventriloquist and actor (b 1903, d 1978); Vera-Ellen, German-American actress, singer, and dancer (b 1921, d 1981); John Schlesinger, English actor and director (b 1926, d 2003); Sonny Bono, American actor, singer, and politician (b 1935, d 1998); Iain Banks, Scottish author and playwright (b 1954, d 2013); Margaux Hemingway, American model and actress (b 1954, d 1996); LeVar Burton, German-born American actor, director, and producer (b 1957); Ice-T, American rapper and actor (b 1958); John McEnroe, German-American tennis player and sportscaster (b 1959); Andy Taylor, English singer-songwriter, guitarist, and producer (b 1961); Christopher Eccleston, English actor (b 1964); Cathy Freeman, Australian sprinter (b 1973).

Rest in peace these folks who died on the 16th of February:  Brownie McGhee, American singer-songwriter and guitarist (b 1915, d 1996); William Masters, American gynaecologist and sexologist (b 1915, d 2001); Doris Troy, American singer-songwriter (b 1937, d 2004); Tony Sheridan, English singer-songwriter and guitarist (b 1940, d 2013); Lesley Gore, American singer-songwriter (b 1946, d 2015); Boutros Boutros-Ghali, Egyptian politician and diplomat, 6th Secretary-General of the United Nations (b 1922, d 2016); Bruno Ganz, Swiss actor (b 1941, d 2019).

Some notable historic events that took place on February 16th:  Colombo in Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) falls to the British, completing their invasion of Ceylon (1796); Howard Carter unseals the burial chamber of Pharaoh Tutankhamun (1923); Fidel Castro becomes Premier of Cuba after dictator Fulgencio Batista was overthrown on January 1 (1959); the first computer bulletin board system is created, the CBBS in Chicago (1978); the Kyoto Protocol comes into force, following its ratification by Russia (2005); the last Mobile army surgical hospital (MASH) is decommissioned by the United States Army (2006).


The Mobile World Congress, a major smartphone trade show event held each year in Barcelona, Spain, has been canceled in 2020 due to the coronavirus outbreak.


What was that kerfuffle about the PM’s holiday and £15,000?


Over 21,000 fines have been issued to people for using their mobile phones while cycling since a new law was introduced in the Netherlands in July last year. The offence is punishable by a fine of €95 plus costs.


Engineer Justine Haupt built this novel cellphone that uses a rotary dial instead of a touchscreen to dial numbers.  It’s pretty cute actually.


IKEA’s sprawling blue and yellow stores are usually located on the outskirts of cities, so for most people a trip to the Swedish furniture kingdom is a big event in itself. To reward its customers for making the trek, the company has now launched an initiative called “Buy With Your Time,” where shoppers can purchase products with currency accumulated on the basis of their travel time to the store.


A follow-up to a previous post: A single man who made a plea for love by advertising himself on a billboard has bagged a Valentine’s date. Mark Rofe, 30, took drastic action and paid £425 for the roadside sign after becoming fed-up with online dating.


The world’s oldest living man at 112 years-old is still enjoying a full and fruitful life and says smiling is the secret to longevity.


Staff at a branch of Currys PC World called police during a row with a man trying to return a washing machine.  Carl Warburton, of Stoke-on-Trent, bought the £419 machine on 2 February, but it flooded his kitchen.


A British woman has claimed she was answering the call of nature at a London cafe when she stumbled upon members of a “satanic sex cult” eating pork pies and scotch eggs.


Customers at Lucky Candy in the Bronx get an entirely different experience, and it’s all thanks to cashier Ahmed Alwan. Two weeks ago, Alwan decided to start playing a game with shoppers — and it’s since gone viral.  The rules are simple: If you can solve a math equation, you get five seconds to grab anything you want off store shelves and have it for free.  Why is this not in York?


There are ugly handbags… and then one step below, there’s this rubber chicken purse.  I’ve seen worse.


These are worse: KFC makes pretty good fried chicken. Crocs are all about styleless comfort. But what do you get when the two companies enter a unholy partnership? These absolutly horrendous KFC themed CROCS shoes, featuring a fried chicken print and a striped base, complete with a pair of Jibbitz charms that are made to resemble and smell like fried chicken.


Florida Highway Patrol troopers pulled over a speeding vehicle in the panhandle. Both occupants were arrested after troopers noticed the car had some unusual cargo: meth, the “date rape” drug GHB, cocaine, MDMA (or “ecstasy”), a large volume of cash, and more. The Santa Rosa County Sheriff’s Office assisted, and provided a clue as to what helped troopers figure out there was illegal cargo. “Note to self,” the department posted on Facebook. “Do not traffic your illegal narcotics in bags labeled ‘Bag Full Of Drugs’.” (RC/WTSP Tampa)

A man entered a Lafayette, Ind., convenience store, pulled a knife, and demanded money from the two clerks. The clerks simply closed the security enclosure they were in, and the man left without any money. Police were able to quickly identify Shawn Yoakum, 42, and arrested him on charges of attempted robbery and resisting law enforcement. The reason for the quick capture: Yoakum was readily identified by one of the clerks — his brother. (MS/Lafayette Journal & Courier)

The owner of a gas station-convenience mart combo in Hamden, Conn., logged in to the store’s security cameras to check on his overnight-shift employee: it was his first night on the job. The owner rushed over when he found the store completely unattended. The employee was gone, he says, along with $17,183 worth of lottery tickets, cigarettes, and cash. But he couldn’t even tell police the man’s name, since as the thief fled, he took one more thing: his folder from the personnel file with all of his identifying information. (RC/WTIC Hartford)


Chief Bottle Washer and television reviewer — Tony Crockford: support@ymug.org

Head of Department of Redundancy Department — Chris Brady: ymug@csjbrady.org.uk

with help from: Anzir Boodoo and Tim Pinder.

Items for the newsletter . . . reviews, rants, raves, revelations and reflections to: Jerad Zimmermann, your participatory social mores editor: news@ymug.org

Thanks to Ian Thomas, Martin Pickering and Brendan Rowland who send me items of interest. And jokes.

Join mactalk – YMUG’s official email list discussion group.

You’ll get approximately 5 or 6 emails a day and can have ‘instant’ discussions on Mac related issues.  And other stuff, we’re flexible. By the way, if you’d rather have fewer emails there is a ‘digest’ version which concatenates all the daily emails into one.

To subscribe (FREE) to the group, send a blank email to: mactalk-join@ymug.org and then confirm membership when you receive an automated reply from the group,

If you have any difficulty, please contact Tony Crockford, he’s very nice, smart too.  And I happen to know he has excellent taste in music. –  support@ymug.org

mactalk posting guidelines written by the lovely Jo can be found at: https://ymug.org/category/articles


I’ve put the list of discounts up on the intertubes: The Take Control books are always available to MUG members for 30% off by the way.

(The page below is password protected which I can provide upon request.  And don’t give the link to non-YMUG members or some of the publishers will get ever so cross about it.)



Unsubscribe news@ymug.org from this list:

YMUG Newsletter — 2019/08/04

YMUG Newsletter — the 4th of August, 2019

A collection of news and views, rants and raves, and some goofy news stories compiled by Jerad Zimmermann, Esq.



Okay, I’m back in the saddle . . . well, that’s what John Wayne would say.  My Macbook Pro has a brand-spanking new battery and the case has reverted to it’s normal size so my trackpad is working as it should.  The repair man told me that, in fact, the battery had leaked a bit in the case but there was no damage.  Whew!!

In the past I tried really hard to take care of my battery (and it did last five years or more) but I’m going to try even harder now.  I just read another news post about good battery protocols and I’m going to stick with the recommendations.  Mostly.  As much as I can. 

What I find most impressive is that my mid-2012 model Macbook Pro is still functioning beautifully.  The keyboard and case are in great shape.  I think one reason that persuaded many of us to become Apple users is their build quality. 

Anyway, on with the show!!



Hi All,

Quick heads up re memberships.

Many of you will have received a membership renewal request.

Some of you have renewed without difficulty, (thanks, brilliant, wonderful!) but I just discovered that anyone that created a subscription during the testing phase (December 2018 to end Feb 2019) would have been unable to buy a renewal.

I’ve fixed that, (you may have had a note about a cancelled subscription)

if you got a renewal request and couldn’t renew, please try again.

If you get an expiry reminder in August, please renew!

If you have any issues at all, please let me know by replying to this email.

Once this renewal tranche (some 75 of you) is passed, we should have ironed out all the wrinkles

Many thanks for your patience

Best Wishes




MACS, macOS, etc

Okay, catching up a bit: As it often does, Apple released updates for all of its device operating systems over a week ago. iOS 12.4, watchOS 5.3, macOS 10.14.6, and tvOS 12.4 all arrive on supporting devices today (which was the 23rd of July!).  Probably the ‘biggest’ change is that iOS 12.4 allows the transfer of settings and data from an old iPhone to one being set up, which is slick.


And then, a week later: It was just over a week ago that Apple released macOS 10.14.6, but the company has already pushed out a Supplemental Update. Released today, the update fixes a heretofore not-widely-known issue involving sleep mode on Macs.


15-inch MacBook Pro mini-review: How much does Apple’s fastest laptop offer?


Want to remove Mail rules from Mac Mail? Or perhaps you need to disable Mail rules when an errant mail rule has wreaked some havoc in the Mail app?  Perhaps you created a Mail auto-responder and no longer need that mail rule anymore, or maybe you misconfigured a mail rule which is causing some issues with the Mail app and want to delete that. Whatever the situation, we’ll show you how to remove Mail rules from the Mail app of Mac OS. We’ll also show a troubleshooting trick to disable mail rules manually via the file system.


Some Mac users may wish to turn off FaceTime on their computer, thereby preventing FaceTime calls from ringing on the Mac, and also turning off the ability to make outbound calls too. By disabling FaceTime on the Mac, the Mac will not be able to accept, receive, or make any FaceTime calls, whether they are audio or video calls. This is an easy feature to turn off and on at any time, so you can also quickly re-enable FaceTime if you do want to use the feature on the Mac.


From Jon Brodkin at ArsTechnica: This is a story I never had any intention of writing. Dropbox updated its file-sync application for Mac last month, and the new version contains an annoyance that I would like to eliminate. I figured this wouldn’t be difficult, let alone newsworthy: I’d contact Dropbox, explain the problem, and find out if there’s any way for me to change the annoying behavior. If there wasn’t, I’d recommend that they make a small change to their app, and hopefully my message would be passed along to their development team and they’d eventually make a change. Instead, I learned something both frustrating and fascinating: there are numerous Dropbox support employees who apparently have never used their company’s Mac application and do not understand how it works. As a result, Dropbox’s users have to explain to Dropbox employees how Dropbox’s application works on the Mac.




Apple releases iOS 12.4 with new wireless data migration when setting up a new iPhone and Apple News+ improvements


Alongside iOS 12.4 Apple releases iOS 9.3.6 and iOS 10.3.4 with GPS bug fixes for older iPhones and iPads.


One of the new features in iOS 12.4 is an updated data migration option that uses device to device transfers rather than relying on iCloud.


How to prevent unsolicited AirDrops to your Apple Device.


Starting November 3, 2019, some iPhone and iPad models introduced in 2012 and earlier will require an iOS update to maintain accurate GPS location and keep the correct date and time. This is due to the GPS time rollover issue that began affecting GPS-enabled products from other manufacturers on April 6, 2019. Affected Apple devices are not impacted until November 3, 2019.


How to Disable Camera Access for Apps on iPhone & iPad.




Apple contractors regularly hear confidential medical information, drug deals, and recordings of couples having sex, as part of their job providing quality control, or “grading”, the company’s Siri voice assistant, the Guardian has learned.


And, the next week: Apple workers have stopped listening to Siri queries worldwide, the company said this week. Apple plans to bring back human reviews of Siri voice recordings at some unspecified date, but the company said it will only review them when customers specifically opt in to the practice.


A woman has been charged in connection with a hacking breach at Capital One bank that exposed information from more than 100 million credit applications over a 14-year period – what is thought to be one of the largest such attacks in recent years.


Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards declared a state of emergency in response to ransomware attacks on three public school districts. There’s no word so far on which ransomware variant has hit the school districts or what the exact extent of damages is. Eddie Jones, principal of Florien High School (a school in one of the three affected districts), told KSLA News that his technology supervisor received an alert on his phone at 4am Sunday about unusually high bandwidth usage. Shortly afterward, investigators discovered ransomware on the school servers. Jones says “anything and everything housed solely on the School District’s servers” was lost, including 17 years of his own personal documents.


About 200 million Internet-connected devices—some that may be controlling elevators, medical equipment, and other mission-critical systems—are vulnerable to attacks that give attackers complete control, researchers warned on Monday.


US Attorney General William Barr launched a new front in the feds’ ongoing fight against consumer encryption, railing against the common security practice and lamenting the “victims” in its wake. “The deployment of warrant-proof encryption is already imposing huge costs on society,” Barr claimed in remarks at a cybersecurity conference held at Fordham University Tuesday morning. Barr added that encryption “seriously degrades” law enforcement’s ability to “detect and prevent a crime before it occurs,” as well as making eventual investigation and prosecution of crime more difficult.



August 4th is the 216th day of the year and is also Coast Guard Day in the US.  One of my cousin’s husband is in the Coast Guard.  I should write them.  But why break the habit of a lifetime?

Happy Birthday to:  poet Percy Bysshe Shelley (b 1792, d 1822); mathematician William Rowan Hamilton (b 1805, d 1865); fashionista Louis Vuitton (b 1821, d 1892); mathematician John Venn (b 1834, d 1923); Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother (b 1900, d 2002); musician Louis Armstrong (b 1901, d 1971); journalist Helen Thomas (b 1920, d 2013); bass player and ubiquitous session musician Larry Knechtel (b 1940, d 2009); actor Martin Jarvis (b 1941); actor Richard Belzer (b 1944); actor Billy Bob Thornton (b 1955); former US President Barack Obama (b 1961); baseball player Roger Clemens (b 1962); comedian Lee Mack (b 1968).

Rest in peace these folks who died on August 4th:  story writer Hans Christian Andersen (b 1805, d 1875); the curvaceous Marilyn Monroe (b 1926, d 1962); actor Melvyn Douglas (b 1901, d 1981); actor Victor Mature (b 1913, d 1999); historian Brian Crozier (b 1918, d 2012).

Some notable historic events that took place on August 4th:  The father and stepmother of Lizzie Borden are found murdered in their Fall River, Massachusetts home; she was tried and acquitted for the crimes a year later (1892); In response to the German invasion of Belgium, Belgium and the British Empire declare war on Germany (1914); A tip from a Dutch informer leads the Gestapo to a sealed-off area in an Amsterdam warehouse, where they find and arrest Jewish diarist Anne Frank, her family, and four others (1944); A federal judge sentences Los Angeles Police Department officers Stacey Koon and Laurence Powell to 30 months in prison for violating motorist Rodney King’s civil rights (1993).



Now even funerals are livestreamed—and families are grateful. One funeral home director estimates nearly 20% of US funeral homes now offer streaming.


The shift toward using an app on your phone to place an order, instead of using your phone to call a place, has made life easier for millions of people. Unfortunately, that shift has the opposite effect on blind and visually impaired consumers, for whom thousands of websites and mobile apps are unusable. Domino’s Pizza maintains one such site, and it’s asking the Supreme Court to let the site stay that way.


Some everyday Viking words you use every day.  Probably.  What do I know?


Conservative MP Jacob Rees-Mogg began his new role as the leader of the House of Commons by issuing a style guide to all staff members in his new office. His rules, according to ITV News, include banning his staff from using words such as “very”, “lot” and “got” when writing to other MPs and members of the public. He also said only ‘imperial’ measurements should be used.  Well, that says a lot really.


A stretch of the border wall between the U.S. and Mexico was adorned with a set of pink see-saws this week — allowing children (and grownups) to play together across the barrier. The event was “filled with joy, excitement, and togetherness,” says architect Ronald Rael, a leader of the project.


Devon volcano up for sale for £50,000.  I assume it’s inactive.  Otherwise it could be an explosive situation.


People visiting a medieval cathedral this summer will see the central aisle converted into a crazy golf course. The nave of Rochester Cathedral is home to a nine-hole course each including a model of a different type of bridge.


Some good news: England’s largest retailers are now selling 90% fewer plastic bags than they did before a 5-pence plastic bag fee began in late 2015, the U.K. government says. In the past year alone, the retailers’ sales fell by nearly half, from more than 1 billion bags to fewer than 550 million.


Fans of a popular Chinese video blogger who called herself “Your Highness Qiao Biluo” have been left stunned after a technical glitch during one of her live-streams revealed her to be a middle-aged woman and not the young glamorous girl they thought her to be.


A food evil greater than pineapple pizza has emerged, and we need to band together for some good ol’ fashion public shaming. Sound the ice cream truck alarm, because a accursed food is on its way: hot dog ice cream.


A woman who celebrated her 107th birthday on Wednesday shared her secret to living a long life: stay single.  Louise Signore, who lives in the Bronx in New York, maintains a healthy diet and exercises regularly. But she believes the real reason why she’s enjoyed more than a century is because she never tied the knot.


“I have a plan on Afghanistan that if I wanted to win that war, Afghanistan would be wiped off the face of the earth, it would just be gone, it would be over literally in 10 days. I don’t want to go that route…I just don’t want to kill 10 million people. Does that make sense to you?”

— Trump

A 911 caller told Chicago, Ill., police there was an active shooter in an office building. About 30 employees hid in one closet; others tried securing themselves in restrooms. The block was cordoned off, police went through the place one floor at a time, and even a neighbouring building went into lockdown. But there was no active shooter. There wasn’t even a drill. “This was an instructional training video,” said the building’s tenant, AT&T. “In the case of a drill, our team would have notified our employees in the building in advance.” (AC/Chicago Tribune)

Matty Roberts says he created an “event” on Facebook, but “it was kind of a joke.” Even though it is scheduled from 3:00 a.m. to 6:00 a.m. and located deep into the Nevada desert, the September event notice so far shows about 2 million people say they are going, and 1.4 million more say they are “interested” in going. The event: “Storm Area 51, They Can’t Stop All of Us”, and the post suggests folks “meet up at the Area 51 Alien Center tourist attraction” to “coordinate our entry.” The tourist attraction is 74 road miles from the military site at Groom Lake. Area 51 is the popular name of an Air Force facility which conspiracy theorists believe is where the government keeps captured UFOs for study and technology exploitation. The event notice says that “If we naruto run [use anime ninja powers], we can move faster than their bullets. Lets [sic] see them aliens.” The Air Force says it “highly discourages” anyone to actually try to storm the site, saying only that it would be “dangerous.” (RC/KLAS Las Vegas)

When a flight from Bogota, Colombia, arrived in Barcelona, Spain, police couldn’t help but notice one particular passenger: he was nervous, clearly wearing a toupee, and there was something wrong with it. They pulled him aside since his wig was covering something huge on the top of his head. A search revealed a plastic bag with 503g of cocaine inside. He was of course arrested. Police didn’t name the man, but did release a photo, and put a value on the drugs of about 30,000 euros (US$34,000). (RC/Reuters)



Chief Bottle Washer and television reviewer — Tony Crockford: support@ymug.org

Head of Department of Redundancy Department — Chris Brady: ymug@csjbrady.org.uk

with help from: Anzir Boodoo and Tim Pinder.


Items for the newsletter . . . reviews, rants, raves, revelations and reflections to: Jerad Zimmermann, your participatory social mores editor: news@ymug.org

Thanks to Ian Thomas, Martin Pickering and Brendan Rowland who send me items of interest. And jokes.


Join mactalk – YMUG’s official email list discussion group.

You’ll get approximately 5 or 6 emails a day and can have ‘instant’ discussions on Mac related issues.  And other stuff, we’re flexible. By the way, if you’d rather have fewer emails there is a ‘digest’ version which concatenates all the daily emails into one.

To subscribe (FREE) to the group, send a blank email to: mactalk-join@ymug.org and then confirm membership when you receive an automated reply from the group,

If you have any difficulty, please contact Tony Crockford, he’s very nice, smart too.  And I happen to know he has excellent taste in music. –  support@ymug.org

mactalk posting guidelines written by the lovely Jo can be found at: https://ymug.org/category/articles



I’ve put the list of discounts up on the intertubes: The Take Control books are always available to MUG members for 30% off by the way.

(The page below is password protected which I can provide upon request.  And don’t give the link to non-YMUG members or some of the publishers will get ever so cross about it.)




YMUG Newsletter — 2017/10/22

YMUG Newsletter –  2017/10/22

A collection of news and views, rants and raves and some dodgy jokes compiled by Jerad Zimmermann, Esq.


We’ve got a new list of software that is discounted for Mac user group members. Here’s a partial list of the apps and companies:

Moneyspire, Sparkle, TechTool Pro, 1Password 6, Broom 2, Take Control books, Joe on Tech Guides, Teams ID, EverWeb, various Eltima Software apps, Noteboom tutorials, Prosoft Engineering, Que Publishing products, SlideShark, Opus.

Follow this link to one of my Google Drives for full details: (Don’t worry, you won’t be tainted.)


Looking over the new list I noticed that Commander One and CloudMounter (part of the Eltima stuff) were 60% off. I can highly recommend both of these. CloudMounter lets you ‘mount’ Google Drives as external drives so you do not have to sync them. It’s fabulous! Commander One is a dual-pane Finder like thing.

Sadly this last week a couple of the Eltima apps got hacked (not the two I mentioned) on their servers and it sounds like it takes a complete reinstallation of macOS to clear the problem. If you’re interested in their products check their website to see what the status is. As usual only people who downloaded the affected apps during a short period of time got hit.


Also, Peter W tells me there’s a new version of Take Control of iCloud WHICH HE REALLY SHOULD READ!! 🙂


Because a personal situation I had with my son having his iPhone mashed on the road (don’t ask) there was a (probably too long) discussion on mactalk about what to do in that situation. The upshot is the following piece of advice:

Log onto you Apple account on their website and check all your details and devices! If you haven’t done so add a trusted phone number you can use to recover your account.

Trust me on this one, you do want to do it.



How many of you remember the template/overlays you could get for your keyboard that showed you all the different things the keys would do depending on what modifier key (cmd, alt, ctrl, etc) was also pressed? When I was first learning Word and WordPerfect those kind of things were essential, pull-down menus were sometimes available but I am talking about pre-graphic interfaces here. (I know, I am old.) Well, I haven’t got an overlay but if I had a real desk I’d print up this list of macOS keyboard shortcuts and stick it on the wall where I could see it.


If you like and use iCloud then you’ll be pleased to know it’s the ‘perfect’ platform for sharing files with friends, colleagues and someone you just met on SnapChat.


In case you missed the news: Apple has relented, a bit, for taking apps out of iTunes and has offered to let us ‘downgrade’ to a previous version with the caveat that you won’t get updates.

iTunes App Syncing is Back (Kinda)

If you’re fed up with Apple’s Contacts app you might want to consider Cardhop. Or not. It’s all the same to me.

Cardhop for Mac is a seriously intelligent contacts app from the makers of Fantastical

I’m not vouching for this guide to picking the best wi-fi mesh system for your home. Have a look and see what you think.

How to Choose the Best Mesh Wireless System For Your Home

Remember our discussion of Apple’s new Intelligent Tracking Prevention option in Safari that has the advertisers’ knickers in a twist? Looks like Google (whose primary source of income is advertising) is figuring out ways around it by moving some of the tracking to the servers. I like Google Mail but this is getting ridiculous.

Google Finds a Workaround for Apple’s Intelligent Tracking Prevention

Do you like Apple’s Magic Keyboards but fancy something other than that austere, brushed-aluminium look? Well, for twice the price you can get ColorWare to do a custom paint job. I wonder if they’d do paisley?



In case you’ve been annoyed, like me, with apps asking you to rate them here’s how you can turn that off!

iOS 11: How to Block In-app Ratings and Reviews Requests

How to share files using the iOS 11 Files app.

iOS 11: How to Share Documents from the Files App

How to teach Siri to correctly pronounce names. I never have that problem actually; I never use Siri.


And then there’s The Shelf, a free app for quick temporary storage. I guess if I were using my iPad for more than looking up who played Morgan Freeman’s wife in The Bucket List I would probably have use for something like The Shelf.


I apologise ahead of time for the website but this article is just really interesting: how to use iOS Files, Dropbox, and Terminal to add any music file to your iPhone or iPad.


I do love this feature of iOS 11: Apple is rolling out new internal maps of airports.


A comparison of the cameras/photos from an iPhone 8 and a Google Pixel 2 XL.


Some ways you can personalise Siri’s responses.


Mobile networks are starting to offer special mobile data packages for premium services like Spotify and Facebook. I can just see it now, my online access grinds to a halt every time Beyonce releases a new hit single. Hey, you, get off of my cloud!!


But maybe the mobile companies aren’t such blood-sucking leaches after all (discuss); Vodafone is going to be offering a pay-as-you-go plan that is capped at £1 a day. I just might look into that being a Vodafoney already. Compare that to EE’s £10 Data Pack which includes 2 GB of mobile data, 100 minutes of calling and unlimited texts per month.



Some possibly good photo apps for Apple Watches.

Our Top 5 Picks For Apple Watch Photography Apps

If you are taking pictures with your Apple Watch then you can zoom in on them with the crown of the watch.

Use Your Apple Watch Digital Crown to Zoom Photos


My favourite story of the week: Russians are annoyed that some Bulgarians are painting old Soviet statues to look like American super heroes, Ronald McDonald, Santa Claus, etc.

Russia Wants Bulgarians to Stop Painting Soviet Monuments To Look Like American Superheroes

London is getting some electric black cabs.


Are smartphones killing drivers in the US? Do we care?


Floating wind farms off the coast of Scotland. Sounds good to me.


“If you wanted to applaud Chinese president Xi Jinping’s recent speech but got stuck in traffic or were halfway around the world, well, there’s an app for that now.”


A true case of accidental autodefenestration.


Make-your-skin-crawl story of the week: one family is repeatedly bitten by bed bugs on a British Airways flight after they asked to be moved.


Five embarrassing moments from live television. Video clips. Not sure if they are worth it.


You know, the real problem is that the rest of the world thinks drinking tea is cute and charming. So, they make things like tea-balls in the shape of manatees. A ‘Mana-tea’, get it. Sigh. Real men with impenetrable accents and copies of the Daily Sun in their cars drink tea lassie.

Mana-Tea Infuser

I wonder why Elon Musk’s company is drilling a ten-mile long tunnel in Maryland? Maybe he’s BORING? Sorry, sorry.


Could Pole Dancing become an Olympic sport? They have an international governing body: the International Pole Sports Federation founded by Katie Coates from Hertfordshire. They have competitions for competitors as young as 10-years old. I bet it would sell tickets.


Tim? Guess what Tim? It’s not too early to add these ever-so-cute USB heated narwhal slippers to your Christmas wish list.

These Narwhal Slippers are USB Heated

October 22nd is the 295th day of the year and is also INTERNATIONAL CAPS LOCK DAY and Wombat day in Australia.

Happy Birthday to: frontiersman Daniel Boone (b 1734, d 1820); composer Franz Liszt (b 1811, d 1886); actress Sarah Bernhardt (b 1844, d 1923); illustrator Edmund Dulac (b 1882, d 1953); painter NC Wyeth (b 1882, d 1945); photographer Robert Capa (b 1913, d 1954); author Doris Lessing (b 1919, d 2013); psychologist Timothy Leary (b 1920, d 1996); painter Robert Rauschenberg (b 1925, d 2008); the amazing Derek Jacobi (b 1938); actor Christopher Lloyd (b 1938); Mouseketeer Annette Funicello (b 1942, d 2013); sigh, Catherine Deneuve (b 1943); author Deepak Chopra (b 1947); football manager Arsene Wenger (b 1949); actor Jeff Goldblum (b 1952); Baroness King of Bow Oona King (b 1967); actor/producer/director Spike Jonze (b 1969).

Rest in peace these folks who died on October 22nd: painter Paul Cezanne (b 1839, d 1906); Pretty Boy Floyd (b 1904, d 1934); cellist Pablo Casals (b 1876, d 1973); Blazing Saddles actor Cleavon Little (b 1939, d 1992); author Kingsley Amis (b 1922, d 1995); actress Mary Wickes (b 1910, d 1995); author Eric Ambler (b 1909, d 1998); CIA maven Richard Helms (b 1913, d 2002); actor Arthur Hill (b 1922, d 2006); comedian Soupy Sales (b 1926, d 2009).

Some notable events that took place on October 22nd: the world was created at about 6pm according to Bishop Ussher (4004 BC); Scilly naval disaster in which four British Royal Navy vessels run aground near the Isles of Scilly and thousands of sailors die (1707); the first recorded parachute jump (1797); The Great Anticipation wherein the followers of William Miller (the Millerites) anticipate the second coming of Christ and the beginning of the end of the world, the next day became known by the Millerites as The Great Disappointment (1844); the Metropolitan Opera House in New York City opens (1883); the Royal Observatory is adopted as the prime meridian of longitude by the International Meridian Conference (1884); Dr Crippen is convicted at the Old Bailey (1910); Pretty Boy Floyd is killed by the G-men (1934); US President John Kennedy announces that there are nuclear missiles in Cuba (1962); the Papal inauguration of John Paul II (1978).

FUNNIES, ETC (Some material may be offensive although i am trying to avoid the really hideous stuff)

“To fear the world we have organised and led for three-quarters of a century, to abandon the ideals we have advanced around the globe for the sake of some half-baked, spurious nationalism cooked up by people who would rather find scapegoats than solve problems is as unpatriotic as an attachment to any other tired dogma of the past that Americans consigned to the ash heap of history.”
— John McCain, member of the Republican party, in remarks upon receiving the National Constitution Center’s Liberty Medal

“People have to be careful because at some point I fight back. I’m being very nice. I’m being very, very nice. But at some point I fight back, and it won’t be pretty.”
— Trump, Republican president, in response

“I’d say it was a 10…I give ourselves a 10… We have provided so much, so fast.”
— Trump, asked to rate the response to Puerto Rico

“In nine months, we have done more, they say, than any president in history.”
— Trump on his administration

A Mesa County, Colo., sheriff’s deputy was on patrol, and even while driving could smell the familiar odor of fresh marijuana coming from a rental truck he was following in the town of Fruitvale. The truck was speeding, so he pulled it over and asked the driver, Sinh Chan Hoang, 53, if he had any marijuana in the truck. “Just a little,” the man said. Hoang agreed to show the deputy what a “little” was: he pulled up the rolling door, pulled out a trash bag, poked a finger through the plastic, and pulled out some weed. “It’s just a little bit,” Hoang told the deputy. “I can throw it out.” But the deputy could see other trash bags: nt all, there were 87 bags holding 3,100 pounds of marijuana. Hoang and his passenger, Larry Tran, 49, were arrested and charged with felony possession with intent to distribute marijuana. (RC/Grand Junction Sentinel)

Police were dispatched to a Casper, Wyo., residence, where they found Bryant Johnson with bloodshot eyes, slightly slurred speech, and the smell of alcohol on him. He told the officers he was from the year 2048, and had traveled back in time to warn locals of an alien invasion coming next year, and he needed to speak to the president of the town. He explained that in order to time travel, aliens filled his body with alcohol and had him stand on a giant pad. But he had ended up in the wrong year: he was transported to 2017 instead of 2018, which is when he’d intended to go. A blood sample showed he had a blood alcohol content of .136 percent, and Johnson was arrested on public intoxication charges. (MS/KTWO Casper)

An 80-year old man goes for physical.  All tests come back with normal results.
The doctor says, “George, everything looks great. How are you doing mentally and emotionally? Are you at peace with God?”
George replies, “God and I are tight.  He knows I have poor eyesight, so he’s fixed it so when I get in up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom – poof!! – the light goes on.
When I’m done – poof!! – the light goes off.”
“Wow, that’s incredible,” says the doctor.
A little later in the day, the doctor calls George’s wife. “Ethel,” he says, “George is doing fine, but I had to call you because I’m in awe of his relationship with God. Is it true that he gets up during the night and poof!! – the light goes on in the bathroom, and when he’s done – poof!! – the light goes off?”
“Oh, my God!” Ethel exclaims, “He’s peeing in the fridge again!”

A couple quotes from Leighann Lord:

“Did you know America ranks the lowest in education but the highest in drug use? It’s nice to be number one, but we can fix that. All we need to do is start the war on education. If it’s anywhere near as successful as our war on drugs, in no time we’ll all be hooked on phonics.”

“That moment when you realise — and I mean really, truly know — that the greatest gift you’ve gotten was the day you were born to people who love you; everything else is gravy. But a Lexus would be cool too.”

Two Aussie builders (Keith & Ken) are seated either side of a table in a rough pub when a well-dressed man enters, orders a beer and sits on a stool at the  bar.
The two builders start to speculate about the occupation of the suit.

Ken: – I reckon he’s an accountant.

Keith: – No way – he’s a stockbroker..

Ken: – He ain’t no stockbroker!  A stockbroker wouldn’t come in here!

The argument repeats itself for some time until the volume of beer gets the better of Ken and he makes for the toilet.
On entering the toilet he sees that the suit is standing at a urinal. Curiosity and the several beers get the better of the builder.

Ken: – ‘Scuse me.. No offence meant, but me and me mate were wondering what you do for a living?

Suit: – No offence taken! I’m a Logical Scientist by profession.

Ken: – Oh! What’s that then?

Suit: – I’ll try to explain by example… Do you have a goldfish at home?

Ken: – Err…. Mmm . Well yeah, I do as it happens!

Suit: – Well, it’s logical to follow that you keep it in a bowl or in a pond. Which is  it?
Ken: – It’s in a pond!

Suit: – Well then it’s reasonable to suppose that you have a large garden.

Ken – As it happens, yes I have got a big garden!

Suit: – Well then it’s logical to assume that in this town if you have a large garden then you have a large house?

Ken: – As it happens I’ve got a five-bedroom house…built it myself!

Suit: – Well given that you’ve built a five-bedroom house it is logical to assume that you haven’t built it just for yourself and that you are quite probably married?

Ken: – Yes I am married, I live with my wife and five children.

Suit: – Well then it is logical to assume that you are sexually active with your wife on a regular basis?

Ken:- Yep! Five or six nights a week!

Suit: – Well then it is logical to suggest that you do not masturbate very often?

Ken: – Me?  Never.

Suit: – Well there you are!  That’s logical science at work!

Ken: – How’s that then?

Suit: – Well from finding out that you had a goldfish, I’ve told you about your sex life!

Ken: – Yeah! That’s pretty impressive…thanks mate!

Both leave the toilet and Ken returns to his mate.

Keith: – I see the suit was in there. Did you ask him what he does?

Ken – Yep! He’s a logical scientist!

Keith: – What’s that then?

Ken: – I’ll try and explain. Do you have a goldfish?

Keith: –  Nope.

Ken: – Well then, you’re a wanker!

A cow, an ant and an old fart are debating on who is the greatest of the three of them.
The cow said, “I give 20 quarts of milk every day and that’s why I am the greatest!”
The ant said, “I work day and night, summer and winter, I can carry 52 times my own weight and that’s why I am the greatest!”  
 Why are you scrolling down?  It’s your turn to say something.

Some quotes from Carol Burnett:

It’s almost impossible to be funnier than the people in Washington.

If you want to know the feeling [of labor pain], just take your bottom lip and pull it over your head.

Comedy is tragedy plus time.

No one ever said life was fair. Just eventful.

I liked myself better when I wasn’t me.

It’s not a bad thing to be able to do many things onstage. If you’re an entertainer, you should be able to entertain. I’m proud to say that I’m not a one-trick pony. When I was starting out in this business, that was the norm. You did it all. You looked around, and entertainers could dance, sing, play the piano, act, make you laugh.

You have to really want it, and don’t take it personally if you don’t get a job. Because sometimes you’re not the type. And sometimes it’s somebody else’s turn.

I was once asked to do my Tarzan yell at Bergdorf Goodman, and a guard burst in with a gun! Now I only do it under controlled circumstance.

[on working with Tim Conway when he went off script] I often thought that I should have some investment in Depends, because nobody could be with Tim and keep a straight face.

(Definitely un-PC)

A suicide bomber died and went to Paradise, as foretold.

When he arrived there he said to Allah that he was ready to claim his 72 virgins, as promised. Out of curiosity he asked Allah why there were so many virgins in heaven.

Allah regarded him for a moment, then replied, “Actually, the 72 virgins are here in heaven because people like you murdered them before they could experience the pleasure of sex. So you’re here to look after them. And since they’re virgins, they’re quite sexually ravenous and, frankly, you’ll be on constant, exhausting duty. I shall banish you from Paradise should you fail!”

The bomber responded, “Well, I guess I can live with that. How hard can it be to keep 72 women satisfied for all eternity?”

Allah replied, “Who told you they were women?”

(Potentially offensive language although it depends on how you take things)

A southern gentleman went to Las Vegas. Sitting in a cocktail lounge, and sipping on some bourbon, he beckoned the waitress and said quietly “Miss, y’all sure are a luvly, luvly lady. Can ah
persuade y’all to give me a piece of aass?”

“Wow, that’s the most direct proposition I’ve ever had!” gasped the girl.

Then she looked around the room, smiled and said “Sure, why not? You’re an attractive guy, and it’s pretty slow here right now, so why don’t we just slip away up to your room?”

When they returned half an hour later, the man sat down at the same table and the waitress smiled at him and asked “Will there be anything else?”

“Why yes” replied the southerner. “Ah sure ‘preciate what y’all just did for me. It was real sweet and right neighbourly of ya. But where ah come from down in Luzianna, we lahk our bourbon real cold, so it’s still a piece of aass for mah drink that I need”.


Chief Bottle Washer and television reviewer — Tony Crockford: support@ymug.org

Head of Department of Redundancy Department — Chris Brady: ymug@csjbrady.org.uk

with help from: Anzir Boodoo and Tim Pinder.

Items for the newsletter . . . reviews, rants, raves, revelations and reflections to: Jerad Zimmermann, your participatory social mores editor: news@ymug.org

Thanks to Ian Thomas, Martin Pickering and Brendan Rowland who send me items of interest. And jokes.

Join mactalk – YMUG’s official email list discussion group.

You’ll get approximately 5 or 6 emails a day and can have ‘instant’ discussions on Mac related issues.  And other stuff, we’re flexible. By the way, if you’d rather have fewer emails there is a ‘digest’ version which concatenates all the daily emails into one.

To subscribe (FREE) to the group, send a blank email to: mactalk-join@ymug.org and then confirm membership when you receive an automated reply from the group,

If you have any difficulty, please contact Tony Crockford, he’s very nice, smart too.  And I happen to know he has excellent taste in music. –  support@ymug.org

YMUG Newsletter — 2017/09/24

YMUG Newsletter –  2017/09/17

A collection of news and views, rants and raves and some dodgy jokes compiled by Jerad Zimmermann, Esq.


Alan Smith (alandpol@dircon.co.uk) asked me to pass on the following:

My well-loved Canon printer MG5350 has gone to its last resting place, the council tip, leaving me with 20 cartridges of ink that are NBG to me. They were bought from IJT Direct within the last few months. Any use to anyone, p&p only?


We’ve been told about discounts on some software for members of Mac user groups. Here’s a list of some of the apps included:

Moneyspire, Sparkle, TechTool Pro, 1Password 6, Broom 2, Take Control books, Joe on Tech Guides, Teams ID, EverWeb, various Eltima Software apps, Noteboom tutorials, Prosoft Engineering, Que Publishing products, SlideShark, Opus.

Follow this link to one of my Google Drives for full details: (Don’t worry, you won’t be tainted.)


iOS 11 IS OUT!

On Tuesday (evening for us UKers) iOS 11 was released for the striving masses. I updated my 16 GB iPhone 6 via iTunes as usual.

Here is Ars Technica’s extremely thorough review:


You will notice that Control Center is quite different and customisable.


My iPhone 6 is definitely faster but iPhone 5s aren’t feeling the love.


iOS 11 has introduced a new file format for photos (it will also be supported in macOS High Sierra due out tomorrow). Here’s some info.

HEIF: Here’s What You Need to Know About iOS 11’s JPEG Replacement

Siri can now provide some translations for you.


iOS 11 may be more . . . impactful for iPads than iPhones.


The iOS 11 Dock is much more flexible now on iPads.


And what’s that Files app all about?


Some iOS 11 features you may have missed?

10 New iOS 11 Features You Didn’t Know About

And another list of iOS 11 features.


Turns out that turning off Bluetooth and wi-fi in the new Control Center doesn’t completely turn them off.


A designer takes a long look at iOS 11 and finds it lacking. I quite agree that there are inconsistencies between apps.


Personally I find iOS 11 to be good and bad:

Good in that my phone is running noticeably faster, seems to have a bit more storage space and the battery seems just fine. I really like the built-in document scanner.


Bad in that some of the new versions of standard apps now look a bit more flat and bland (just a matter of taste really) but a couple, like Podcasts have been changed to the point where I’m having to rework my standard operating procedures.

I think though that security issues are important and you are always safer with the latest iOS version.

Lest I forget: watchOS and tvOS have been updated as well.




The A11 chip in the iPhone 8s outperforms the i5s in some Macbooks. Really.


Some non-Apple charging pads for iPhone 8s and iPhone Xs.

5 Wireless Charging Pads for Your iPhone 8 and iPhone X

How does wireless charging work? It’s inductive power transfer! Duh!


9to5Mac likes the iPhone 8 but asks if you should wait for the iPhone X instead?

iPhone 8/Plus Review: With this traditionally beautiful powerhouse, should you really wait for iPhone X?

How physically durable are those iPhone 8s anyway?



Last week I had a moan about the newest version of iTunes, 12.7: it’s missing the iOS app store AND it was unstable for me. Well, it now seems to be behaving on my system and older versions of iTunes have also been stripped of the iOS app store. So . . . you might as well update.

One thing we do all want to know is: how do you add custom ringtones to iTunes 12.7?


There is a way to ‘downgrade’ to iTunes 12.6 but it’s pretty messy.


Safari was updated this last week.


I think I mentioned last week that some companies are really upset with Apple’s decision to increase Safari’s ad-tracking restrictions. But I can’t resist to reference it again! Good for Apple!! This article explains how the new cookie restrictions will work.


I should learn to set Reminders. Maybe next week . . . someone remind me.

macOS: Setting Up Custom Reminders

This is kind of cool: you can now get a software tool that will transcribe audio files. I wonder how it would handle a Scottish accent?



Something that came up in mactalk this last week: how to edit live photos in iOS 11.


Pages, Numbers and Keynote for iOS got updated.


I tell you what: if I needed to get a new iPhone I’d seriously consider getting an iPhone 6s from Apple directly. It’s a great phone and now it’s very affordable.



I love the Radio 4 programme The News Quiz and have been subscribing to the BBC Friday Night Comedy podcast (in which it appears) via iTunes for years. If you’re a fan of the show you have probably figured out that the scoring seems a bit wonky: teams get points which you haven’t heard being awarded. It turns out that the actual recording of the show goes on for longer than the 30-minute broadcast and some lovely person at the BBC has decided that they will release extended versions of the episodes in this series. Warning: they’ve left in all the swear words as well.

You can subscribe to it via iTunes by searching for News Quiz Extra. It seems to be released on the Monday following the Friday radio broadcast and the last available episode lasts about 44 minutes.


This one tends to live always just on the severe edge of my consciousness. I’ve linked to one of several fine versions available on YouTube but this particular one is from their live album Waiting for Columbus which, for my money, is one of the greatest live rock albums every recorded.

Little Feat — Dixie Chicken


The HP Z8 is a computer which can be kitted out with 56-cores, 3 TB of RAM and 3 GPUs. Wow. I bet it can heat your home as well.


In 1983 a Soviet nuclear launch warning satellite network thought it detected an attack coming from the US (considering Reagan was President it probably was a real fear). The officer in charge, Stanislav Petrov, figured it was an error and didn’t inform the Kremlin. He may have saved the world from a nuclear war. He died in May and the news is just getting out.


CCleaner is a cache cleaner for Windows; I used to use it a few years ago. Sadly, someone sneaked some malware into a recent build.


Muhammed has made it onto the list of most popular boys names in England and Wales. I bet my name has never been on that list!


I like the idea of a ‘smart’ lock that tells you you left the door open but it would be even slicker if it closed and locked the door for you!!


The Daily Mail got done for misrepresenting some data on climate change but no one really expects them to change their stance.


An electric bus has travelled over 1000 miles on a single charge! Yeah!!


A telemarketer called an elevator emergency phone. I guess they really just do dial every number.


I guess the Boston Red Socks didn’t use an iPhone to steal the hand signals of their opponents; they used a Fitbit.


Maybe social networks aren’t so bad: a particularly dense criminal got caught after posting pictures of his arsenal on Instagram.


I’ll pass on this incense burner in the shape of the RV featured in the television show Breaking Bad. But I wish I had thought of it.

IT EXISTS: A Breaking Bad RV Incense Burner

September 24th is the 267th day of the year and is also National Punctuation Day in the US of A.

Happy Birthday to: mathematician Gerolamo Cardano (b 1501, d 1576); composer Jean-Louis Lully (b 1667, d 1688); politician Horace Walpole (b 1717, d 1797); musician Blind Lemon Jefferson (b 1893, d 1929); author F Scott Fitzgerald (b 1896, d 1940); actor Anthony Newley (b 1931, d 1999); Muppets creator Jim Henson (b 1936, d 1990); photographer (?) Linda McCartney (b 1941, d 1998); actress Harriet Walter (b 1950); footballer Ally McCoist (b 1962).

Rest in peace these folks who died on September 24th: man of many talents Paracelsus (b 1493, d 1541); poet Branwell Bronte (b 1817, d 1848); physicist Hans Geiger (b 1882, d 1945); author Dr Seuss (b 1904, d 1991); founder of The Academy of Ancient Music Christopher Hogwood (b 1941, d 2014).

Some notable events that took place on September 24th: second Council of Nicea (787); Devils Tower in Wyoming becomes the first US National Monument (1906); the Honda Motor Company is founded (1948); CompuServe launches the first consumer internet service (1979); the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty is signed at the UN (1996).


“Loser terrorists must be dealt with in a much tougher manner. The internet is their main recruitment tool which we must cut off & use better!”
— Trump tweet

“Rocket Man is on a suicide mission for himself and for his regime.”
— Trump on Kim Jong Un

“I will surely and definitely tame the mentally deranged U.S. dotard with fire.”
— Kim in response

“A madman…”
— Trump

“We can be on stage while I’m home walking the dogs”
— An ABBA band member on their plans to tour as holograms…while still very much alive.

“We have dinosaurs. No contest”
— London’s Natural History Museum, on whether it would win a duel with the city’s Science Museum.

Online security expert Brian Krebs says he has figured out one way hackers were able to break into the Equifax consumer credit reporting bureau; hackers stole detailed personal financial information on 143 million Americans. How? Equifax’s online security sucked. Even well after Equifax revealed the breach, which they delayed for six weeks while company insiders sold millions in Equifax stock before its price was whacked by the news, Krebs found that the company’s Argentina operation still had significant issues: their system there “was wide open, protected by perhaps the most easy-to-guess password combination ever,” Krebs said: “admin” for the user name, and “admin” for the password. Once in, he was able to see every employee’s personal password in plain text, and he could see that every one of the passwords was the same as the employee’s login name, which was their surname, or their first initial and surname. Equifax only took that system offline after Krebs told them about it. The issue “was not in any way connected to the cyber-security event that occurred in the United States,” an Equifax spokeswoman declared, adding, “we will continue to test and improve all security measures in the region.” (RC/BBC)

Kimberley Paige Barnette, 53, is running for mayor in Charlotte, N.C. Several people are not pleased with her campaign. “She’s using the race card,” opponent Gary Dunn said. Barnette spelled out her qualifications in a Facebook post: “VOTE FOR ME! REPUBLICAN & SMART, WHITE, TRADITIONAL.” During a debate, Barnette was asked for her plan to help Charlotte’s lower-income residents. “I don’t think we should encourage more lower-income people to [come to] Charlotte,” she said. “We should attract higher-income people.” After a public uproar over her Facebook post, she made a new post: “There is a group called Congressional Black Caucus. I’m sorry if I described myself as white and it offended others.” (MS/Charlotte Observer, WJZY Charlotte)

Some quotes from participants in this year’s Strictly Come Dancing

Rev Richard Coles

“There’s a dog collar being pimped apparently, we’re quite excited about that.”
“I was preaching quite a fierce sermon recently and a piece of glitter fell out of my hair.”
“I’m going to need a miracle. It’s ‘let us spray’ at the moment.”
“I’m going to have to launch myself across a dance floor, which I haven’t done since Ibiza in 1990. And it wasn’t pretty then, believe me.”
“I’m very happy to volunteer to dance with Aljaz anywhere, any place, any time.”

Ruth Langsford

Asked if she would wear skimpy outfits: “I’ll only be getting my kit off privately in the spray tan booth.”
On the show’s costumes: “It’s amazing, they gave me a waist – I hadn’t seen that waist for a long time.”

Debbie McGee

On doing ballet dancing in the past: “Strictly has changed over the years. At the beginning it really was that you didn’t have any training. Lots of people have done it now who have. I did train as a ballet dancer over 30 years ago. But it’s like if you were at school and really good at high jump, and 35 years later you’re asked to enter a competition and you’ve got to do long jump.”

Susan Calman

On having a moment with professional Gorka: “When I walked into the dressing rooms, one of the male dancers, I’m not going to say who – Gorka – had his top off. And I’ve actively avoided any contact with the male species for my entire life. And I went…. ‘he’s beautiful!'”

Jonnie Peacock

On seeing Davood at a costume fitting: “I got to stare at this lovely man’s derriere in a pair of tight Latin trousers – there’s not many better sights.”

Brian Conley

On only getting two tickets for friends and family per show: “I’m selling mine on eBay – 10 grand each. I want to stay in the show so I could make 20 grand a week.”

Some Johnny Carson jokes:

Last night, it was so cold, the flashers in New York were only describing themselves.

You get the feeling that Dan Quayle’s golf bag doesn’t have a full set of irons?

Some sad news from Australia… the inventor of the boomerang grenade died today.

Democracy means that anyone can grow up to be president, and anyone who doesn’t grow up can be vice president.

There is a power struggle going on between President Reagan’s advisers. Moe and Curly are out. Larry is still in.

Nancy Reagan fell down and broke her hair.

That would have been a great ticket, Reagan and Ford. An actor and a stuntman.

Did you know Richard Nixon is the only president whose formal portrait was painted by a police sketch artist?

Happiness is your dentist telling you it won’t hurt and then having him catch his hand in the drill.

The Hollywood tradition I like best is called “sucking up to the stars.”

Ronald Reagan just signed the new tax law. But I think he was in Hollywood too long. He signed it, ‘Best wishes, Ronald Reagan.’

The difference between divorce and legal separation is that a legal separation gives a husband time to hide his money.

If life was fair, Elvis would be alive and all the impersonators would be dead.

If variety is the spice of life, marriage is the big can of leftover Spam.

A woman is helping her husband instal his computer. She says it will ask him for a password so he should make one up.

Being a bit of a He man, he winks at his wife and says “penis”. He enters the password and presses the ‘submit’ button.

His wife bursts into hysterical laughter…….

The computer responded: “Too short, entry refused.”

Some great one-liners:

Tim Vine – “Conjunctivitis.com – that’s a site for sore eyes”

Joan Rivers – “All my mother told me about sex was that the man goes on top and the woman on the bottom. For three years my husband and I slept in bunk beds.”

Woody Allen – “Sex without love is a meaningless experience, but as far as meaningless experiences go it’s pretty damn good.”

Ken Dodd – “I have kleptomania, but when it gets bad, I take something for it.”

Bob Monkhouse – “I want to die like my father, peacefully in his sleep, not screaming and terrified, like his passengers.”

Jo Brand – “The way to a man’s heart is through his hanky pocket with a breadknife.”

Milton Jones – “I was mugged by a man on crutches, wearing camouflage. Ha ha, I thought, you can hide but you can’t run.”

Ross Noble – “How come Miss Universe is only ever won by people from Earth?”

Jimmy Carr – “A lady with a clipboard stopped me in the street the other day. She said, ‘Can you spare a few minutes for cancer research?’ I said, ‘Alright, but we won’t get much done.”

Sarah Millican – “I saw a pair of knickers today – on the front it said, ‘I would do anything for love’ and on the back it said ‘but I won’t do that.'”

Tommy Cooper – “Police arrested two kids yesterday. One was drinking battery acid, the other was eating fireworks. They charged one and let the other one off.”

Jack Whitehall – “I’m sure wherever my father is, he’s looking down on us. He’s not dead, just very condescending.”

Some Red Skelton jokes:

All men make mistakes, but married men find out about them sooner.

I’m nuts and I know it. But so long as I make ’em laugh, they ain’t going to lock me up.

Congress: Bingo with billions.

She ran after the garbage truck, yelling, ‘Am I too late for the garbage?’ The driver said, ‘No, jump in!’

I married Miss Right. I just didn’t know her first name was Always.

A fellow told me he was going to hang-glider school. He said, ‘I’ve been going for three months.’ I said, ‘How many successful jumps do you need to make before you graduate?’ He said, ‘All of them.’

Exercise? I get in on the golf course. When I see my friends collapse, I run for the paramedics.

She has an electric blender, electric toaster and electric bread maker. She said, “There are too many gadgets and no place to sit down!” So I bought her an electric chair.

I haven’t spoken to my wife in 18 months I don’t like to interrupt her.

My wife told me the car wasn’t running well because there was water in the carburetor. I asked where the car was. She told me, ‘In the lake.’

I asked my wife where she wanted to go for our anniversary. ‘Somewhere I haven’t been in a long time!’ she said. So I suggested the kitchen.

Remember: Marriage is the number one cause of divorce.

Heard about the young deaf boy who used sign language? One day he told his mother a dirty joke and she washed his hands out with soap.


Chief Bottle Washer and television reviewer — Tony Crockford: support@ymug.org

Head of Department of Redundancy Department — Chris Brady: ymug@csjbrady.org.uk

with help from: Anzir Boodoo and Tim Pinder.

Items for the newsletter . . . reviews, rants, raves, revelations and reflections to: Jerad Zimmermann, your participatory social mores editor: news@ymug.org

Thanks to Ian Thomas, Martin Pickering and Brendan Rowland who send me items of interest. And jokes.

Join mactalk – YMUG’s official email list discussion group.

You’ll get approximately 5 or 6 emails a day and can have ‘instant’ discussions on Mac related issues.  And other stuff, we’re flexible. By the way, if you’d rather have fewer emails there is a ‘digest’ version which concatenates all the daily emails into one.

To subscribe (FREE) to the group, send a blank email to: mactalk-join@ymug.org and then confirm membership when you receive an automated reply from the group,

If you have any difficulty, please contact Tony Crockford, he’s very nice, smart too.  And I happen to know he has excellent taste in music. –  support@ymug.org

YMUG Newsletter — 2017/09/17

YMUG Newsletter –  2017/09/17

A collection of news and views, rants and raves and some dodgy jokes compiled by Jerad Zimmermann, Esq.


Sorry for not being able to put out a newsletter last week. Saturday the pain from my ‘procedure’ was so intense I really couldn’t concentrate; I even thought I might have to go to A&E. Imagine someone dropped a bowling ball on your naked foot, that kind of pain but continuing for hours. Fortunately it began to abate. Monday morning I was feeling a lot better. The pain has largely vanished but there is still some swelling. The real annoyance is not being able to get around owning to these incredible lumps of plastic (orthopaedic shoes) I’m supposed to wear for the next month or more. No driving (okay by me), no cycling, it’s hard to even walk much. Stairs are a major chore. Hopefully it will all be worth it. I am about half-way through my Columbo boxed set of DVDs.

Anyway, it’s good to be back with y’all! Now, on with the show, er . . . news!!


On Tuesday Apple had one of its big product announcement events in their new Steve Jobs Theater.

iPhone 8 and 8 plus:


The iPhone 8 and 8 plus come with iOS 11 installed, have a new cpu chip, dual back camera on the 8 plus, glass back and can be charged wirelessly. Ars Technica likes it.


Oddly enough, Apple’s wireless chargers won’t be ready ’til next year. Until then lucky owners will have to rely on chargers made by other companies.


Here’s some chargers that will work.


Here’s a list of comparisons between the iPhone 8 and the 8 plus.


In case you’re wondering if the iPhone 8 is much of an improvement over an iPhone 7 here’s some info:


Intrigued? Here’s some of the iPhone 8 contracts being offered by UK companies.

A handy comparison table of all the iPhone 8 deals available from UK networks

iPhone X: (oohs and aahs from the crowd)


Here’s another list of some of the new features:


Ars Technica’s opinion:


No home button! It’s all gestures from now on. Sigh. Oh and Face ID. Which brings up some privacy and security issues. One US Senator has brought up the privacy issues in congress


Famously, during the presentation, Face ID failed to recognise the presenter, Craig Federighi, and he had to enter his pass code. Apple’s explanation is that several people handled the phone before the show and it tried to identified them as Craig which it failed to do. After a number of failures it requires a pass code.


Face ID will only store one face at a time. It’s supposed to work with sunglasses or if you’ve grown a beard. It’s infrared you know.


Apple Watch 3:


If you get an Apple Watch 3 you can get its own cell connection so no need to have an iPhone as a relay. But it will only work in one country.

Ars Technica’s thoughts.


Apple TV 4K:



You might have missed Apple’s update to iTunes and this time there is something significant: the new version no longer has an iOS app store. This will affect the way many of us acquire and update apps on our iOS devices. In the future you will only be able to find, download and update iOS apps via the App Store app on the device. I’m a bit miffed at this: I frequently read about an app I’d like to try on a website and am able to get it via iTunes but now I’ll have to grab an iOS device and download it. A newly acquired iOS app will still download to all your linked iOS devices (verified) so that is good. I just wish Apple had a Mac app that could access the iOS app store. Maybe if enough of us complain? Anyway, it’s one update you might want to forgo although, I assume, the app store will probably become non-viable on older versions of iTunes eventually.

Additionally, I have been having lots of problems with this new iTunes: my computer has spontaneously rebooted twice while using the app while syncing podcasts with my iPhone. This means iTunes thinks it has copied them to my iPhone but it hasn’t. Then I’ve had to go through each podcast that didn’t get transferred, toggled it off, sync, toggle it on and sync again. It’s bad enough that I wish I hadn’t updated.


If, like me, you have updated to the app-less iTunes here’s a guide for dealing with apps:


Apple is trying to restrict cookies in Safari (thank you Apple!) and guess what? Advertisers do not like it. “Apple’s unilateral and heavy-handed approach is bad for consumer choice and bad for the ad-supported online content and services consumers love. Blocking cookies in this manner will drive a wedge between brands and their customers, and it will make advertising more generic and less timely and useful. Put simply, machine-driven cookie choices do not represent user choice; they represent browser-manufacturer choice.” 


Apple’s response in full:

Apple responds to ad group’s criticism of Safari cookie blocking

(Personal note: I hate advertising and wish it would all go away so anytime Apple makes it easier for me to avoid being targeted I am all for it!)

By the way, macOS High Sierra will be released on September 25th.

Apple to release macOS High Sierra on September 25

And here’s the bottom-line on APFS, the new Apple file system.


Avira has introduced a free security suite for Mac users. I’m going to give it a try. It has a free VPN; I’ve just set my location to Austria. Which means I can’t use BBC iPlayer on its website. Maybe Austria is not the best choice . . .


(Oh dear, Avira’s VPN locked up and I had to reboot my machine. I’ll experiment further but not right now. The anti-virus bit seems okay.)

How to use Siri to identify a song. I might try this . . . guess I’ll have to turn on Siri.


If you’re using Office 2011 for Macs then you’re going to have some trouble with macOS High Sierra. In fact, you might have problems with Office 2016. Me, I’m an Office 365 subscriber so I should be okay . . . should be . . .

Office for Mac 2011 not supported on High Sierra, may be problems with 2016 apps

Bloc 2 is a website building app for Macs that requires no coding ability!


Trello can help you handle a complex series of tasks. It’s a project tracker . . . I guess. At least it’s free.


Do we need another Mac word processor? Probably not BUT here’s Mellel anyway. One feature it has that sounds interesting is setting it up to convert a whole document from American to British English.


Logitech has introduced a new trackball/mouse device which I’d love to have . . . too bad it costs $99.


Google has promised to stop scanning emails to help with its ad targeting. But for how long?



iOS 11 will be released on September 19th after many beta releases for testers and developers. I’ll install it as soon as I can and report any issues or problems on mactalk.


Here’s a guide to which devices will be able to experience the splendour of iOS 11 on Tuesday the 19th.

Here are the devices that will (and won’t) be updated to iOS 11 on September 19

Minor fuss of the week: Except for personal photos who really wants a fancy wallpaper on their iPhone? Let alone some of these:


A video review of some writing apps for iOS devices including the one I use, Scrivener.

Friday 5: Awesome subscription-free writing apps for iOS [Video]

How to compress videos on your iPhone or iPad using Video Compressor which is free.


Naughty baseball players, stealing their opponents hand-signals with an Apple Watch.


Oh dear, some apps on Google Play charged users for fake services without the users’ knowledge.


If you’d like to read a 245-paragraph review of Android 8.0 today is your lucky day!



If you’ve heard about the hacking problem with Equifax here’s some info:

The Equifax Breach: What You Should Know

There’s a 250-metre long ‘fatberg’ in a London sewer. And someone has to get rid of it. In case you thought your job was rubbish.


Thinking of moving? Someplace warmer? Like Surrey? Now the most expensive region in the UK for buying beer.


The police are using dogs that can sniff out hidden USB drives.


An air freshener and a lighter caused a car to explode in Southend.


During hurricane Irma the Tesla motor company remotely modified some of their vehicles in the Florida region so they would cut into what is normally battery reserve so the owners could get out of the area.


Proof that we are in the ‘end times’: British warships will soon have Siri-like voice controls.


(I used to work for a US military contractor whose remit was to QA software on Trident submarine trainers. Assuming the software on the actual ships goes through a similar validation procedure . . . I’m glad I’m not in the Navy.)

The authorities in California have decided to ban drone deliveries of legal marijuana. Gee, I wonder what they’re worried about?


Love these iOS-controlled lawnmowers, but if I had $3000 to buy one I’d probably already have hired a gardener.

Husqvarna Automower: the iOS controlled mower that cuts your lawn so you don’t have to [Video]

I’m not a big Elon Musk fan but he has a sense of humour good enough to allow a two minute compilation of Space X’s failures to be released.


Okay, when I lived in America I did follow American Football. But since when is it popular enough over here to have a BBC weekly roundup programme?


Anyone want a ‘Handmaid’ Mermaid Blanket? Lots of colours are available.

Handmaid Mermaid Blanket

September 17th is the 260th day of the year and is also Operation Market Garden Anniversary in the Netherlands.

Happy Birthday to: mathematician Bernhard Riemann (b 1826, d 1866 . . . wow, didn’t realise he died so young); outlaw Billy the Kid (b 1859, d 1881); author of more than 600 books John Creasy MBE (b 1908, d 1973); one of my favourite authors Mary Stewart (b 1916, d 2014); singer Hank Williams (b 1923, d 1953); the lovely Roddy McDowall (b 1928, d 1998); race car driver Stirling Moss (b 1929); astronaut Edgar Mitchell (b 1930, d 2016); actress Anne Bancroft (b 1931, d 2005); tennis player Maureen Connolly (b 1934, d 1969); author Ken Kesey (b 1935, d 2001); mountaineer Reinhold Messner (b 1944); actor John Ritter (b 1948, d 2003); lead singer of The Tubes Fee Waybill (b 1950); actress Cassandra ‘Elvira, Mistress of the Dark’ Peterson (b 1951); race driver Damon Hill (b 1960); director Baz Luhrmann (b 1962); snooker player Ken Doherty (b 1969).

Rest in peace these folks who died on September 17th: Hildegard of Bingen (b 1098, d 1179, not a bad run for those days); composer Franz Xaver Sussmayr (b 1766, d 1803); slave Dred Scott (b 1795, d 1858); fashion designer Laura Ashley (b 1925, d 1985); pool player Willie Mosconi (b 1913, d 1993); philosopher Karl Popper (b 1902, d 1994); US Vice President Spiro Agnew (b 1918, d 1996); actor Red Skelton (b 1913, d 1997).

Some notable events that took place on September 17th: Boston, Massachusetts is founded (1630); the US Constitution is approved (1787); abolitionist Harriet Tubman escapes from slavery (1849); Joshua Norton declares himself Norton 1, Emperor of the United States (1859); the Battle of Antietam, the bloodiest day in American military history (1962); Lt Thomas Selfridge becomes the world’s first airplane fatality when the Wright Flyer piloted by Orville Wright crashes (1908); Lord of the Flies is published (1954); the Camp David Accords are signed by Israel and Egypt (1978); the 1988 Summer Olympics begin in Seoul (1988); the New York Stock Exchange reopens after the 9/11 attacks (2001).


“Aristotle, Archimedes, Galileo, Tesla, Faraday, Newton, Pasteur, Einstein, and Edison. Among the greatest scientists in world history. What do they all have in common? Not a single one of them ever wrote about man-made climate change.”
— radio host Mark Levin

“I don’t believe Hurricane Harvey is God’s punishment for Houston electing a lesbian mayor. But that is more credible than ‘climate change.'”
— Ann Coulter

“I would say it’s humility. With the gravity and responsibility of being President of the United States and commander-in-chief of our armed forces, sir, I would say that with that gravity and responsibility have come a great deal of humility…There’s a great deal of humility there.”
— Kellyanne Conway, asked by Pat Robertson what Trump characteristic stands out in her mind

“Before long, Black Lives Matter will join forces with ISIS to bring down our legal constituted republic. You heard it here first.”
— 2015 tweet by Sheriff David A. Clarke, Jr., who until recently has been under consideration for a post in the Trump Administration

“It looks like it could be something that will be not good.”
— Trump on Hurricane Irma

“We are building our future with American hands, American labor, American iron, aluminum and steel. Happy Labor Day!”
— Trump tweet, accompanied by photo in which the First Lady is wearing a dress by a Greek designer that was made in Italy with French materials

“Alone in your room and want company? RENT-A-FISH”
— A service offered at a Belgian hotel

“Quiet neighbors”
— A for-sale sign on a Michigan home. It’s next to a cemetery.

When you’re deep asleep and not dreaming, where the [heck] are you? There’s total blackness, it’s nothing, right? So I’m hoping that’s what death is, that it’s all gonna go. I don’t want to deal with any consciousness afterward.
— Harry Dean Stanton

Mohiussunnath Chowdhury, 26, allegedly planned a one-man terrorist attack on Windsor Castle in England. He used his GPS to navigate to the castle, but didn’t quite get the destination entered correctly: it brought him to the Windsor Castle Pub, less than a mile away from his intended target. Once he realised his mistake, Chowdhury headed instead to Buckingham Palace in London, an hour and a half away — which took him right past Windsor Castle. At Buckingham, he got out of the car and allegedly attempted to attack people with a four-foot-long samurai sword. Officers tackled him, and Chowdhury was charged with one count of “preparing to commit an act or acts of terrorism.” Police were able to collect evidence of Chowdhury’s travels using his dashcam and navigation unit — installed in his car because he’s an Uber driver. (MS/London Telegraph)

Liam Smith, a postgrad student at England’s University of Bristol, says his first date with a woman he met on Tinder went well. After dinner, they went to his flat “for a bottle of wine and a film.” She needed to use the loo, and afterward it “would not flush,” she told him. The “panicked” woman fished her poop out of the bowl, wrapped it in tissue, and threw it out the window — except that the window doesn’t actually go outside, so the smelly package was in the wall. After confessing what happened to Smith, the unnamed woman — who he described as an “amateur gymnast” — “climbed in head first after her own turd,” he said. After she got it, they realised she was stuck upside-down in the window. After 15 minutes of failing to get her out, Smith called Avon Fire and Rescue service to help, and documented the rescue with pictures. The fiasco came to light when Smith posted a plea on GoFundMe to fund replacing the window firefighters destroyed to get her out. “I’m not complaining,” Smith said, as “they did what they had to do.” The appeal went viral, bringing in 14 times his 200 pound (US$265) goal. Smith promised to split the excess funds between two charities: one that builds flush toilets in developing countries, and the firefighters’ charity for “the brave men and women who risk their lives for us.” (RC/BBC)

(I heard about the above story on a US news programme and now I’ve seen some of the pictures. It really happened.)

(From a Quora thread)

There’s an old joke in my country (Romania) about the people in a certain part of our country, Oltenia. Oltenians live in poorer conditions compared to other parts of the country and aren’t so technologically advanced, so inevitably jokes in the spectrum of Stone Age Oltenians had to come up.

Q: What did Oltenians do when they saw the first airplane flying?

A: They went to the mountains to look for its nest.

Can you cry under water?

How important does a person have to be before they are considered assassinated instead of just murdered?

Why do you have to ‘put your twopence in’… but it’s only a ‘penny for your thoughts’? Where’s that extra penny going to?

Once you’re in Heaven, do you get stuck wearing the clothes you were buried in for eternity?

Why does a round pizza come in a square box?

What disease did cured ham actually have?

How is it that we put man on the moon before we worked out it would be a good idea to put wheels on luggage?

Why is it that people say they ‘slept like a baby’ when babies wake up like every two hours?

If a deaf person has to go to court, is it still called a hearing?

Why are you IN a movie but you’re ON TV?

Why do people pay to go up tall buildings and then put money in binoculars to look at things on the ground?

Why do doctors leave the room while you change? They’re going to see you naked anyway.

Why is ‘bra’ singular and ‘panties’ plural?

Why do toasters always have a setting that burns the toast to a horrible crisp which no decent human being would eat?

If Jimmy cracks corn and no one cares, why is there a stupid song about him?

If the professor on Gilligan’s Island can make a radio out of a coconut, why can’t he mend a hole in a boat?

Why does Goofy stand erect while Pluto remains on all fours? They’re both dogs!

If Wile E. Coyote had enough money to buy all that ACME stuff, why didn’t he just buy dinner?

If corn oil is made from corn and vegetable oil is made from vegetables, what is baby oil made from?

If electricity comes from electrons, does morality come from morons?

Do the Alphabet song and Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star have the same tune?

Did you ever notice that, when you blow in a dog’s face, he gets mad at you but when you take him for a car ride, he sticks his head out of the window?

Why do we press harder on a remote control when we know the batteries are getting dead?

Why do banks charge a fee on ‘insufficient funds’ when they know there is not enough money?

Why does someone believe you when you say there are four billion stars but check when you say the paint is wet?

Why do they use sterilised needles for death by lethal injection?

Why doesn’t Tarzan have a beard?

Why does Superman stop bullets with his chest but ducks when you throw a revolver at him?

Why do Kamikaze pilots wear helmets?

Why is it that no matter what colour bubble bath you use the bubbles are always white?

Is there ever a day that mattresses are not in a sale?

Why do people constantly return to the refrigerator with hopes that something new to eat will have materialised?

Why do people keep running over a string a dozen times with their vacuum cleaner, then reach down, pick it up, examine it, then put it down to give the vacuum one more chance?

Why is it that no plastic bag will open from the end on your first try?

How do those dead flies get into those enclosed light fixtures?

Why is it that whenever you attempt to catch something that’s falling off the table you always manage to knock something else over?

In winter why do we try to keep the house as warm as it was in summer when we complained about the heat?

How come you never hear father-in-law jokes?

Yearly Dementia Test!

It’s that time of year for us to take our annual senior citizen test. Exercise of the brain is as important as exercise of the muscles. As we grow older, it’s important to keep mentally alert. If you don’t use it, you lose it! Below is a very private way to gauge how your memory compares to the last test. Some may think it is too easy but the ones with memory problems may have difficulty.

OK, relax, clear your mind and begin.

  1. What do you put in a toaster?

Answer: ‘bread.’ If you said ‘toast’ give up now and do something else. Try not to hurt yourself.

  1. Say ‘silk’ five times. Now spell ‘silk.’ What do cows drink?

Answer: Cows drink water. If you said ‘milk,’ don’t attempt the next question. Your brain is over-stressed and may even overheat. Content yourself with reading more appropriate literature such as Auto World.

  1. If a red house is made from red bricks and a blue house is made from blue bricks and a pink house is made from pink bricks and a black house is made from black bricks, what is a green house made from?

Answer: Greenhouses are made from glass.

If you said ‘green bricks,’ why are you still reading these???

  1. Without using a calculator – You are driving a bus from London to Milford Haven in Wales.

In London, 17 people get on the bus. In Reading, 6 people get off the bus and 9 people get on. In Swindon, 2 people get off and 4 get on. In Cardiff, 11 people get off and 16 people get on. In Swansea, 3 people get off and 5people get on. In Carmathen, 6 people get off and 3 get on.

You then arrive at Milford Haven… Without scrolling back to review, how old is the bus driver?

Answer: Oh, for crying out loud! Don’t you remember your own age… It was YOU driving the bus!

Why teachers drink:

The following questions were set in last year’s GED examination These are genuine answers (from 16 year olds) ……. and they WILL breed.

Q. Name the four seasons. A. Salt, pepper, mustard and vinegar.

Q. Explain one of the processes by which water can be made safe to drink. A. Flirtation makes water safe to drink because it removes large pollutants like grit, sand, dead sheep and canoeists.

Q. How is dew formed? A. The sun shines down on the leaves and makes them perspire.

Q. What causes the tides in the oceans? A. The tides are a fight between the earth and the moon. All water tends to flow towards the moon, because there is no water on the moon, and nature abhors a vacuum. I forget where the sun joins the fight.

Q. What guarantees may a mortgage company insist on? A. If you are buying a house they will insist that you are well endowed.

Q. In a democratic society, how important are elections? A. Very important. Sex can only happen when a male gets an election

Q. What are steroids? A. Things for keeping carpets still on the stairs

Q.. What happens to your body as you age? A. When you get old, so do your bowels and you get intercontinental

Q. What happens to a boy when he reaches puberty? A. He says goodbye to his boyhood and looks forward to his adultery

Q. Name a major disease associated with cigarettes? A. Premature death

Q. What is artificial insemination? A. When the farmer does it to the bull instead of the cow

Q. How can you delay milk turning sour? A. Keep it in the cow

Q. How are the main 20 parts of the body categorised? (e.g. The abdomen) A. The body is consisted into 3 parts – the brainium, the borax and the abdominal cavity. The brainium contains the brain, the borax contains the heart and lungs and the abdominal cavity contains the five bowels : A, E, I,O,U..

Q. What is the fibula? A. A small lie

Q. What does ‘varicose’ mean? A. Nearby

A man sees a sign outside a house – ‘Talking Dog For Sale.’ He rings the bell, the owner appears and tells him the dog can be viewed in the back garden.

The man sees a very nice looking Labrador Retriever sitting there.

“Do you really talk?” he asks the dog.

“Yes,” the Labrador replies.

After recovering from the shock of hearing the dog talk, the man asks, “So, tell me your story.”

The Labrador looks up and says, “Well, I discovered that I could talk when I was pretty young. I wanted to help the government, so I was sold to the SAS. In no time at all they had me jetting from country to country, sitting in rooms with spies and world leaders, because no one imagined that a dog would be eavesdropping. I was one of their most valuable spies for eight years. But the jetting around really tired me out, and I knew I wasn’t getting any younger so I decided to settle down. I signed up for a job at Heathrow Airport to do some undercover security work, wandering near suspicious characters and listening in. I uncovered some incredible dealings and was awarded several medals. Then I got married, had a few puppies, and now I’ve just retired.”

The man is amazed. He goes back into the house and asks the owner how much he wants for the dog.

“Ten quid,” the owner says.

“£10! But your dog is absolutely amazing! Why on earth are you selling him so cheaply?”

“Because he’s a lying bastard, he’s never been out of the garden.”

An elderly couple were having dinner one evening when the husband reached across the table, took his wife’s hand in his and said, “Martha, soon we will be married 50 years, and there’s something I have to know. In all of these 50 years, have you ever been unfaithful to me?”

Martha replied, “Well Henry, I have to be honest with you. Yes, I’ve been unfaithful to you on three occasions during these 50 years, but always for a good reason.

Henry was obviously hurt by his wife’s confession, but said, “I never suspected. Can you tell me what you mean by ‘good reasons?’

Martha said, “The first time was shortly after we were married, and we were about to lose our little house because we couldn’t pay the mortgage. Do you remember that evening I went to see the banker and the next day he notified you that the loan would be extended?”

Henry recalled the visit to the banker and said, “I can forgive you for that. You saved our home, but what about the second time?”

Martha asked, “Do you remember when you were so sick, but we didn’t have the money to pay for the heart surgery you needed? Well, I went to see your doctor one night and, if you recall, he did the surgery at no charge.”

“I recall that,” said Henry. “And you did it to save my life, so of course I can forgive you for that. Now tell me about the third time.”

“All right,” Martha said. “So do you remember when you ran for president of your golf club, and you needed 53 more votes?”


Chief Bottle Washer and television reviewer — Tony Crockford: support@ymug.org

Head of Department of Redundancy Department — Chris Brady: ymug@csjbrady.org.uk

with help from: Anzir Boodoo and Tim Pinder.

Items for the newsletter . . . reviews, rants, raves, revelations and reflections to: Jerad Zimmermann, your participatory social mores editor: news@ymug.org

Thanks to Ian Thomas, Martin Pickering and Brendan Rowland who send me items of interest. And jokes.

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