Apple adopting the word ‘follow’ for podcasts as users associate ‘subscribe’ with paid content

From 9To5Mac:

As reported by Podnews, Apple will no longer associate the word “subscribe” with Podcasts. According to a research from Edison Research, about 47% of users associate “subscribe” with paid content. This results in fewer people using the Podcasts app because they don’t understand that the content is free.

This confusion between what is paid versus free feels like a problem Apple has contributed to and done too little to solve. From the in-app purchase dialog being difficult to immediately discern the cost of something, to the fact that an App Store listing hides the information for an app which is free to download but requires a paid subscription in order to use.

The payment model Apple foists upon developers has two choices:

  • A one-time payment which is clearly labeled on the “Get” button for an app.
  • A recurring subscription which can have tiered pricing, but the price of such an app appears the same as a free app upon initial download.

Given these two choices alone, and a developers need to make a living (which might be hard to do if users pay for your app once and never again yet expect updates for years), it’s understandable that more apps move their pricing model to the latter approach. This spreads the pricing confusion and mismatched expectations across a wider user base over time.

It’s quite the mess, and the solution here is to do what? Rename “subscribe” to “follow”? It feels like too small a change, and leaves me with a negative impression given that the word “follow” is oft associated with social media, a world set apart from that of podcasting.

I’m Your Child’s New Interlocking Block System and I’m Incompatible With Every Other Block They Own

From McSweeney’s:

Congratulations, parents. I have come into your home as a birthday/Christmas/Daddy-hasn’t-been-around-in-a-while present. Consider it a blessing. I am your child’s newest interlocking block system, and I am not compatible with any other blocks they own.


There are certain things one must know when owning me. My pieces only fit into each other from odd angles, limiting what you can make. Playing with me is not very enjoyable, but more of a privilege. I am the only block system to simultaneously nourish your child’s creativity and provide them constant frustration. Such is the cost of excellence. I can teach them more about life than you ever could, despite being an inanimate block system.

Relevant and related, XKCD 927:

Biking on Thursday

From Weather NJ:

Thursday (March 11) high temperatures should reach well into the 60s again away from the ocean. This day probably has the best chance for interior CNJ/SNJ to climb into the 70s. Places like Cape May and nearby surrounding coastlines could again hang in the 50s. Skies should be mostly sunny. Winds should be light out of the S/SW. Overnight lows should struggle to dip below 50 statewide.

Yup, I’m heading out for a bike ride this Thursday. 🚴‍♂️

Comcast hides upload speeds deep inside its infuriating ordering system

From Ars Technica:

At this page, with Comcast having already verified your card, you can view upload speeds and decide whether to submit the order or exit the ordering system. The part of Comcast’s statement that upload speeds are “visible upon check out when you submit your order” is thus accurate. But refusing to tell a prospective customer what they’re paying for until after they submit credit card information is simply ridiculous. You can probably get upload speeds earlier by asking a Comcast rep in an online chat or phone call, but that shouldn’t be necessary.

Emphasis mine.