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How Apple Is Working From Home (theinformation.com)
238 points by aaronbrethorst 3 months ago | hide | past | favorite | 125 comments



> Most employees aren’t accustomed to holding meetings with colleagues via videoconference and some have found it difficult to use Apple’s own offerings such as FaceTime, iCloud and iMessage, as they weren’t designed for enterprise users, according to current and former employees.

Hopefully this motivates them to make these products better! Although I'm not super hopeful.

I once asked a friend (and Apple employee) why Keynote doesn't have any collaboration function. I said, "Don't you guys every collaborate on presentations?" He said, "No, not really, and if you do, you're all in one room and one person is driving the computer".

So their culture is very much engrained with in person collaboration.

Edit: I should clarify that I asked him this a few years ago, before they added the "collaborate through iCloud" functionality.

The point still stands though, that while everyone else had collaboration in their presentation apps, Apple didn't, because they didn't see the need for it.


> Most employees aren’t accustomed to holding meetings with colleagues via videoconference

That was not my experience at all. Apple was so large that even in Cupertino it was more common than not to have at least one person, if not a whole team, in a meeting from a different location. Not to mention rainy days and flexible schedules because of the commute made it so videoconferencing was needed for almost every meeting I attended.


We have been using WebEx and Slack heavily and it's been working pretty well. We have a good culture of using iCloud to collaborate with documents and it really is a product which is dog-fooded thoroughly.

I obviously can't give you any specifics but I would say the transition to remote work has been a success so far and management has been using this time as an opportunity to showcase our autonomy.


Dog fooded?


It’s an expression which describes using your own product to test it, i.e eating your own dog food.


Except of course for the big old 'Collaborate' button on Keynote's menu bar, where you can choose who should be able to edit or view the presentation - anyone with the link, or anyone you invited - mediated via iCloud.

To be fair it's a fairly recent addition - maybe in the last year or so.


Yeah I asked him this a few years ago. They did eventually add it.

But the point was even when every other presentation app had it, they didn't, and it was because they didn't understand the need for it.


> it was because they didn't understand the need for it

You keep making this claim but unless the person you knew was on the Keynote team I doubt they had any actual insight into the process.

There are a million things you could do. It is important to layout things in priority order. For example, unifying desktop and mobile implementations and file formats so when you do add collaboration features in the future the two can interoperate. Or adding a high-fidelity web experience so people who don't use your apps at all can collaborate. Perhaps those two things are important to get right before adding collaboration?

(Hypothetical, I don't have any knowledge of any of this).


Thats exactly the order of events since iWork '09, remarkable! =)


It was added in 2016 (with maybe a bit of permissions refinement since then): https://www.cultofmac.com/446151/apple-adds-real-time-collab...


Just discovered recently that keynote does have a collaboration function through iCloud. Was a little clunky to get going but is working great now. Not quite google docs but it does instantly sync across devices when you save


All the iWork apps have collaboration functionality (with mostly full feature parity), and it works on macOS/iOS/web too.

Disclosure: Was a QA Engineer at Apple on those apps/that functionality.


If you have two iOS iWork apps, can each one sign into a separate iCloud account? Or are all iWork apps forced to use a device-wide iCloud login?


Unfortunately no; it just uses the system login set in Settings.


Hopefully Apple will enable multiple identities for apps as part of their new push for single signon. They recently added multiple device users for schools. Enterprise users can have per-app VPNs.

Ironically, because Google and Microsoft collaboration apps don't have iOS platform control, they are much more flexible in supporting multiple user identities.

There are many scenarios where information needs to be separated (projects, consultants, cross-org teams, OSS projects) and multiple identities are a proven means of separation and compliance. This needs to be possible without Enterprise MDM.


I think each just pulls from the system account.


Just curious, what makes it "clunky" to you?

For my use, there's a "Collaborate" button. You click it and invite people. Once they click the invitation, you can watch them view/edit.


I think a big part of the problem here is the cultural adaption. There's the covid microcosm, and the multi-decade macrocosm. We still don't fully know how remote work should work.

That said, the various grades of "enterprise need" and patchy interoperability on stuff like texting & calling is kind of a travesty.


Keynote has an online collaboration functionality, just through the web interface IIRC.


You can collaborate through the native apps as well.


I wished they used my app ScreenTime (https://tryscreentime.com) for some of their work.


Over the years I've had a few conversations with Apple recruiters about job opportunities at Apple. Every time, they've tried to persuade me to move to Cupertino, because Apple doesn't do remote work. I've had to start prefacing the conversations with "I'm not moving to Cupertino. Do you still want to talk?"

I get why Jobs wanted it that way: the value of hallway conversations and the ability to bounce things off other engineers is invaluable, and until recently it was difficult to make that viable with people flung off in different locations. Moreover, it's really difficult to have most of your team in one location and a few scattered people elsewhere: the people elsewhere just aren't part of the loop in the same way, and it makes things really hard for them.

That said, I'd be surprised if Apple continues with a hard-line stance on that after all of this: I think we're seeing that an awful lot of work that people insisted had to be local can indeed be done effectively from remote.

EDIT: Having read the thread on this one, I apologize for my over-generalization based on anecdote. I work for a company that pushes the ability to remote-work, and the folks I've talked with about working at Apple were all very "yeah, they don't do work-from-home". However, the plural of anecdote is not data. :)


Apple's stance was never as hard line as people make it out to be. While remote is certainly not just there for the asking, there have been remote workers in many lines of work (even hardware engineering) for years (even during Jobs' lifetime).

And Apple by now has offices all over the world, so it's not like "everybody bumps into each other in Cupertino" is a universally feasible model anyway.


Every company I've worked at has had people who work from home either part of full time, but it's very rare to hear about someone being hired in as a remote worker in a team that's otherwise staffed by office workers.

I would say it's a much higher bar to be hired in as a remote worker vs an existing employee moving to being remote because you already whether the employee is productive, fits in the team and has the social connections to be productive.


I am one of these people who went remote after a few years in the office. This seems to be the most common path. I have never heard of anybody being hired as remote first.


>I would say it's a much higher bar to be hired in as a remote worker vs an existing employee moving to being remote because you already whether the employee is productive

I have to disagree - this is a common premise that you have to see that someone is productive "in person" first.

But seriously, it doesn't matter if someone is remote or in-person, you won't know how productive they actually will be until after they have been hired.

FWIW, I am an engineering manager at a fully remote org and we have had great success with hiring people and getting them productive from day 1.


Yep. We have these in our team too. People who came in the regular way, were absolutely top performers, and then decided to relocate. The decision to the company was let them be remote or let them go, and some were allowed to be remote and some were shown the door.


This comment should definitely be emphasized as the golden path to be working remote for a company like Apple. Once you prove your worth as a top performer, you might be able to flex remote working, or maybe remote working on a temporary basis, but to demand it upfront without proving yourself is not something a company like Apple bends to.

I have only seen one person in my org successfully get to work remote in my org, he even got to keep his Cupertino comp for the period of time he worked remote - he had to come back to Cupertino within two years though or he would get let go. Otherwise, I have seen top performers get to work remote anywhere they wanted for a period of time as long as they got their work done (the longest I have heard of someone doing so is one month working from Asia and not in an office). I've done it myself for 3 weeks.

Being a top performer is a lot of hard work though, and you do end up sacrificing work-life balance to some degree, but Apple treats their top performers very well.

Edit: I take that back, I did once have a teammate in a remote office in Europe who only goes into the office there once a week. He does good work though and knows his stuff, and the more remote offices probably have a little more flexibility in some regards due to having to keep to Cupertino hours.


1. Apple HQ is in Cupertino. But there is development being done all over the world e.g. France, Israel, UK as well as all over the US e.g. Arizona, Texas and the dozens of offices around California. None of this will change.

2. Apple has always had some people working remotely but really just depended on what you were doing. You can't design an iPod remotely. But you can build software.

3. Situation is definitely different now as the quality of internet and tooling is such that remote work can be high quality and the feeling of detachment can be managed. So definitely agree that at Apple and elsewhere you will see more remote work.


On 2. I have never worked at apple but many job postings I have seen for software engineering positions explicitly called for onsite.


From what I understand, any Apple remote positions are employees that previously worked onsite and negotiated remote after a few years.


re point 1: I've never worked at Apple and have no idea where the 'fun' projects live, but at Google it's often said that you need to be willing to move to Mountain View for the good stuff / for career progression.


I think this is a lot less true now than it used to be, at least for L<8


Many people who could probably do their job remotely do not do their job remotely.


> That said, I'd be surprised if Apple continues with a hard-line stance on that after all of this: I think we're seeing that an awful lot of work that people insisted had to be local can indeed be done effectively from remote.

After speaking to some recruiters recently, the feeling is that everyone will „do remote for the next 3 to 4 months, until pandemic is over” but afterwards „we are looking forward to seeing our colleagues at the offices in X”.


I think we also need to be open minded that maybe 'remote work for everyone' is actually less effective. And it will be hard to show evidence otherwise -- this current test case we're going through -- I doubt people are going to say "wow see, look how productive everyone was during the pandemic when they worked from home."


Oh, don't get me wrong here: for my own work, I'm 100% work-from-office. I like working in an office with a desk and a proper setup and other people around me also doing the same work. Big fan of NOT doing the "let's have everyone work remote it's AWESOMESAUCE!" thing--it's not awesomesauce for everyone, and there's a huge segment for which it's actively detrimental.

I was just guessing Apple might soften their stance on it a bit, although it sounds from others like that ain't the case (which also doesn't surprise me--Apple gonna Apple).


I like remote work but the benefit of an office, for me, is that it draws a very clear line in the sand between personal and work time. In a field saturated with infinite work queues and constant pressure to empty those infinite queues, it provides physical bounds that are difficult to cross without being obvious.

When you work remote it's assumed you have flexible hours and when people need more or less of your time, they queue it up whenever it's good for them, your freetime and personal life can take the back burner.


I think this really varies on the company. I'd hesitate to make industry wide statements about it... Right now, the company I'm at is treating remote work no different than working from the office. We have core hours and regular meetings. They're just remote. If anything, they're more lenient since about half the people have kids at home right now too. So, they know you can't focus completely...

I've seen plenty of my coworkers staying late at the office or, just as often, having to login at home to do nights and weekends work. So, whatever line in the sand you think exists for office work is purely imaginary. If they want to extract more hours from you, they'll keep pushing until you say no.


To be fair if you were working remotely, and on a permanent (well, at least 1 year or more) basis, it would probably be easier to afford a place where you can convert a bedroom to an office and to set up your office so that it's easy to focus.

This time of indefinite, could be one month, could be three WFH is kind of a bad demonstration of WFH to a lot of people because it's not worth it to spend too much investing in a good setup.


> When you work remote it's assumed you have flexible hours and when people need more or less of your time, they queue it up whenever it's good for them, your freetime and personal life can take the back burner.

This is true only insofar as you allow it to be. My coworkers make none of those assumptions about me or my time.


Massive difference is that schools will be open. Which makes large difference on productivity.


Maximizing the productivity of an all-remote team requires appropriate IT infrastructure, work processes, workspaces, management skills, etc.

I'm concerned that some companies will take a productivity hit during the covid19 outbreak, and fail to attribute some of that hit to their inexperience / unpreparedness with all-remote teams.


Yes, I agree. I’m hiring myself and understand both sides. Some people like to work in the office, that’s fine. However, „would you like to move to the other side of the country when the pandemic is over, all 300 of our engineers are going to be there, you can do work from home once a week”?


There's also a few different issues getting mixed up here. I'm not sure I prefer remote work all things kept equal, but I can have a much better workspace at home than I'm going to get in the typical open-floor-plan office setting.


After 3 weeks of remote work, I am sick and tired of it and cannot wait to get back to office. This constant need to dial in to zoom for every single meeting gets tiring. Even for short 1:1s, which I would have accomplished over a cup of coffee. And also just feels impersonal. Also, feels exhausting to be trapped into a house all by myself surrounded by emptiness.


Have been working from home for the past month I must say that I could not disagree more. The experience has been terrible for me personally. I feel like my team is substantially less productive, and nothing new is happening - just maintenance work. At this point I would probably not accept a job that is remote only.


Most strange of all, I have seen today a couple of job announcements from companies that are very busy growing in the brave new quarantined world, one even explicitly pointing it out, and yet they start the "work conditions" part with how cool their office is and no mention of remote work.


You are in luck, last recruiter from Apple who contacted me refused to tell where the job is located unless I've signed an NDA. They actually have sites in WA,FL and OR apart from the CA and I'd be fine with two of these states but I am not signing any NDAs for that.


That's really weird. Pretty much all Apple job postings include location:

https://jobs.apple.com/en-us/search


Indeed, it's bizarre. I imagine it's a technique to force prospects into an NDA as early as possible or, might be just a blanket policy of not giving out any information without an NDA or a legal clearence.


Many jobs they post immediately turn into rumors. Hardly surprising they don’t post everything online.


Does Apple have anything NDA-worthy anymore? Serious question. Look back over the last 5 years and what product would have been devastating to leak (compared to when steve jobs presided)


Regular NDAs I have signed are bi-directional, they protect both the interviewer and the interviewee. E.g. if you interviewed and decided not to take the job but the interviewer called your boss and told him that you're looking to leave your job with a goal to get you fired then you could probably use the NDA to sue. The NDA the recruiter offered was not one of those, it was protecting only Apple so I don't know if they have the same for on-site interviews or more regular one.


Wonder what would happened if they made an experiment to run one product line completely public - public code repo's, chats, emails, meetings, etc.


I'm surprised people are willing to sign a NDA just for the possibility of getting a job. I haven't encountered that before.

(Edited for tone.)


NDA for an interview is pretty normal everywhere. An NDA for a job location, on the other hand, is not something I have been offered anywhere else.


I'm surprised. I've had 8 development jobs in the past 25 years, and in none of my job searches was I asked to sign an NDA.


Depends on the field, I suppose. Product companies usually do this to protect plans for the new products.


You sign one when arriving onsite for an interview at Apple, Facebook, Amazon, Google and many other large companies.


Every apple employee


No, not all of them.


They wouldn't tell me the job they were recruiting me for even during the on site interview. Everyone was extremely cagey. Walked out of there decided against working for them based on that. The employees seemed like victims of abuse.


Depending on the org, that's definitely believable. Jobs' legacy has a dark side that people are unwilling to talk about, save for scant few "employees speak out" exposes that break out every few years. It's a massive company and experiences vary across the board, but Apple is definitely one of the more austere and abuse-prone members of FAANG. Amazon is reputedly toxic, as well.


What's the refrain people always throw up when you try to talk about this?

"Don't generalize, it depends on the team!"

As if that's any excuse. The bad teams get staffed too, not just the good ones. Reorgs happen, managers come and go... even if you get lucky at first, you might not stay lucky.


It isn't just you. I've talked to Apple on a few occassions and the recruiter has always been firm on the no-remote-work -for-this-team. Maybe there are some teams who allow remote, but their inflexibility on the topic has always made me look elsewhere. The same is true for Google and Facebook who are also hardliners on no remote work ( from my experiences).


From my personal experience with one of the above, you can't get hired as remote, but if you are considered a "top-perfomer" (i.e. regrettable attrition), then you can probably pull it off.

Probably not worth moving to CA for though.


I know more than a few engineers who were already working for Apple remote long before this pandemic. It is limited I guess in what teams support remote workers, but it isn’t that uncommon.


> I think we're seeing that an awful lot of work that people insisted had to be local can indeed be done effectively from remote.

Where are we actually seeing a lot of this? Particularly for companies where they primarily sell hardware products such as Apple?


Almost all remote work is at software companies understandably.

But also often it is for the lower lever, just implement this pre-designed and pre-architected feature roles. Most of the decision making and design will get done face to face at the main office.

This model seems to be the standard but it's also toxic and cruel. Even the most independent person will feel isolated and segregated from their peers and the decisions that others ultimately make.

If you want remote to truly work it has to be the Gitlab model. Everyone is remote, every decision is transparent and all corporate knowledge is captured in a single, collaborative handbook.


Where are we actually seeing a lot of this?

Anecdotally, yes.

My company was staunchly against remote work or work-from-home of any kind. When I was hired, one of the first things they told me was, "We don't do remote. Don't ask."

It's about 5,000 employees in maybe 20 cities around the country.

When the virus started spreading, 95% of the workforce was working from home within eight business days. It was a massive mobilization by the IT department. Fortunately, they were already in the process of upgrading everyone's computer, so there were plenty of spares to go around.


I think his question was more "where", as in software vs hardware. As a physical product company, you would have to find a way to interact with these physical products, remotely, assuming you couldn't take them home. Apple has a software division, but that software needs to work on future/prototype hardware.


Kind of funny in this entire thread there's no one mentioning the posting for a job in Camrose that was on Hacker News only a few days ago:

https://jobs.apple.com/en-us/details/200144575/software-engi...

https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=22642185


Some companies don’t want to do remote employees due to other logistics like extra requirements to handle for legal, employment, accounting burden than dealing with a single state. So if a company in San Francisco wants to hire someone in Cincinnati, extra stuff for them to do and if you’re the only employee in that area it isn’t worth it.

Pretty much a lot of requirements as a sticks and bricks business since some employment laws are based on where the worker is doing the work from. So the only option is you pack up and move across the country or more likely they’ll find someone else.

Not an HR expert but a company in San Francisco reached out to me unsolicited (I guess since I put some stuff on Github and NPM) but I wanted to give it a try remotely working from home to see if I was good with their tech stack and stuff before committing to moving but was told no. And then that opens up a lot of other questions and stuff too.

All this employment stuff is a mind field it seems, then if your workforce travels to a convention in a neighboring state even could open up issues. Then some states have city taxes, so I guess if your team went somewhere for a day and you still paid them, extra stuff too. Then health insurance too if your company is big enough to require it and can't be sold across state lines. So having a group plan in California is useless, so now you have to get an Ohio plan... and what address do you even use since you don't have an office and someone is working from home?

As things become more remote and global, I wish the states could work together to make things simpler. Seems some states would benefit letting residents work remotely without much burden to the out of state business, as the way now it seems like they’ll lose residents who are encouraged to move elsewhere for work instead. It just sounds like a mess. My idea was if I ever got a big company and let people work from home, I'd also open up offices in a few cities across the country people could commute to or work remotely some days. Make them sorta like an office but also sorta like co-working spaces but for staff only.

I guess though if you decide to contract out stuff, instead of making them an employee though not as big of a burden then. But if you deal with a business that creates an intellectual property, that could cause some problems unless contracts in place. Since contractors still own the IP, unlike a employee where the company automatically owns the IP. However I was reading something after 35 years, they can reclaim their copyright if a contractor but maybe you could have some failback licensing agreement so you could still use it but no longer have exclusive rights if that'd hold up - but this isn't something I've researched too much on personally. So contracting out tech support probably not a issue since not really creating any IP, but if creating assets like 3D models, sounds, music, etc for a game that could be a problem if planning for a long term brand around it, etc. So if that relates to your business, would want to make sure you research and get the right agreements in place before even contracting out asset creation - but personally I'd rather have an employee instead just to be certain to make sure the company owns any code, graphics, etc.


They're opening Seattle offices this year. Or at least that's the plan? It might be affected by the epidemic.


Apple already has an office in downtown Seattle. I know because I've talked to a recruiter about a job there twice.


Don't they already have offices there?


Parts of their workforce work remotely. I know at least some of their call center staff does.


For hardware companies there is a _vast_ amount of work which cannot be done under these circumstances.

A lot of people here are sounding off on Apple's reluctance to enable remote working (reasonably enough), but the fact is that a large amount of the work Apple does is reliant on 1) sophisticated engineering and manufacturing processes which are not possible in-home/remote, and 2) a pantheon of national and international ISO requirements for safety and other compliance areas which are not possible in-home/remote.

Final, mass, production happens in China, but it's a useful generalisation to think of most hardware products as being prototyped to a high polished standard within a hardware company's internal supply chain prior to testing and mass manufacture.

Testing is also a process which is made extremely difficult with an entirely remote workforce. A good example, from a decade ago: Apple deployed $100m USD into building its own anechoic chambers and radio testing facilities.[1] These things are closer to science experiments than the CNC milling machines the article mentions: multiple persons operating them in-person, etc.

The challenges are not unique to Apple, but they are significantly deeper than the article suggests. There are also some affordances which Apple has made in the last 6-7 years which lend themselves to remote working. For example, their own team of secure couriers who ferry prototypes around various sites in CA.

[1] https://www.fastcompany.com/1671022/chambers-super-silence-w...


They will need to think about this out of the box. One way is to select, say 500 employees, test them and have them live as well as work from the office building. The building is empty anyway so plenty of space to make some living quarters. In other words, they get quarantined in Apple’s space ship building instead of at their home. For a company with $100B in bank, very few things are impossible.


Apple is not exclusively a hardware company.


This seems inane. Did anyone claim they are?


You started off with "for hardware companies"; so I assumed you put Apple in this bucket.


Sorry if that wasn't clear: I meant that for every company making hardware ("hardware companies"), there are a series of deep challenges presented by shelter-in-place which the article ignores. Or, put another way: a series of challenges which would not be present if Apple was solely a software company :)


It’s amazing to me that Apple’s refusal to support remote work has caused them to be caught flat-footed here. I doubt they considered the need to be remote friendly as a contingency plan in case of a disaster, but here we are. Hopefully more companies can be more open-minded in the future; to avoid doing so could be very risky to their business.


> I doubt they considered the need to be remote friendly as a contingency plan in case of a disaster

I seriously doubt they didn't consider it.

People don't seem to realise - global pandemic was already at the top of many national risk assessments. Nobody working in national or corporate risk or disaster management didn't already know it was the single biggest risk.


They just built a giant spaceship to try to get everybody in the same building, didn't they?


Honestly that building was oversubscribed the year they broke ground. Apple probably has half the office space in Cupertino.


> Apple probably has half the office space in Cupertino.

Almost three quarters, as of a couple years ago.


85% as of a couple of years ago.


Its capacity is something around 25k-ish, which is nowhere close to Apple's entire workforce. In fact, Apple owns tens (if not hundreds) of offices across Cupertino, Santa Clara and Sunnyvale; you can see a blue Apple logo everywhere.


IIRC, the logo you see outside buildings is a random color from a set of 5 or so. They match the Apple logo colors they use on the employee badges, which are also assigned randomly.


I think they were supposed to match the iMac colors that replaced Bondi Blue. (Many of the buildings are blue, though.)


Not everyone; there's still a couple dozen other offices scattered around the Bay Area.


Which is rather short sighted of them or at least whomever came up with their business continuity plans. Pandemic and other regional disasters should be at least covered.


I had to smile a bit when reading about the technical problems they were facing with working from home, especially the software stack. This is something, that Apple has the power to address. I am using Webex myself on the Mac. With the last big update, it has become much better, but there is certainly room for improvement. The performance with video conferencing doesn't seem to be great though.

By investing into the relevant software features required for working from home, Apple could not only solve their own problems but also make the platform more attractive for business users outside of Apple. Great screensharing, with voice and video would be a start. Perhaps a native Webex client. Or, make their own client work with Webex.

P.S.: maybe they also should consider offering a new iSight. A physically separate webcam that improves the video conferencing experience. If it is separate, it can be moved to show documents or other things people are working on, like their hardware prototype. It could also offer improved quality in comparison to the builtin cameras.


> maybe they also should consider offering a new iSight.

Logitech makes a 4K camera for the XDR. It’s fantastic and available in the Apple Store.


"leaving them to rely on grainy photographs to make hardware decisions" - why would the photos be grainy? I would think that the Chinese hardware folks would have decent cameras?


At full zoom, every image is grainy.

The part of an image you want to look at, unless you've asked for a specific image to be made, is usually in shadow and in the corner -- Murphy's Law of documentation.


The equivalent of the bottom of a locked filing cabinet stuck in a disused lavatory with a sign on the door saying ‘Beware of the Leopard.'


And if you have asked for a specific image to be made, you will invariably find something shadowed in the corner you need to also see.


Maybe the only way employees got pics is from one of the leak sites? :D


iPhones, at least.


> It encourages employees to use the company’s own communications and file-sharing services for security and reliability reasons, though it has begun allowing them to use some third-party tools like Slack and Box.

As mentioned later in the article, the use of these third-party tools isn't new.


Would be cool if this resulted in some nice enterprise-focused improvements/advanced user features in apple's native apps


When was the last time an Apple product launch wasn't leaked? I feel like we've known what was coming ever since the infamous lost iPhone prototype (iPhone 6 maybe?). It has been a while.


AFAICT the new Magic Keyboard for iPad didn't leak. There were rumors about a keyboard with a trackpad, sure, but I think everyone was surprised about the design.


Note it won't be released before May though. It helps against leaking to announce things before mass production even begins.


We usually have some idea of what's coming, but with varying degrees of accuracy. Apple presumably wants the public to know as few details as possible, and that's a sliding spectrum, not a binary.


Not really a "product", but Swift was so successfully kept secret that we were still arguing over what the big announcement was going to be during the keynote where they revealed it.


SwiftUI was also fairly novel.


this was reported on by Gurman and Guber. But both had it slightly wrong, codename was right tho


> I feel like we've known what was coming ever since the infamous lost iPhone prototype (iPhone 6 maybe?).

iPhone 4.


I'm always amused at the lengths we, as a western society, must now go to because everyone refuses to wear a mask. A lot of the problems described in this article would not be problems with some simple tweaks. Sick? Stay the fuck at home! Not symptomatic? Wear a mask and carry on. Surely Fortune 500 companies that require in person collaborations are able to produce some company issued N95's and hand sanitizer and get on with it.


Nah. Two points:

1. What this situation has already shown —on so many levels— is that we humans as a large group can’t be trusted to behave appropriately. Lots of people do follow the rules... but enough don’t, that it means the rules have to be stricter for everybody, so that the troublesome few don’t cause too much of a problem for the whole.

2. Your infection control proposal doesn’t stand up to the real world. Yes, if you could guarantee excellent N95 mask usage, and guarantee excellent hand washing (and other infection control measures - surfaces-hands-face) in everyone not locked down, and guarantee that no vulnerable people had to come to work or were exposed to people that had, and guarantee that people out in the world maintained strict social distancing... then maybe your proposal could work. But per #1 it’s super unlikely that this would be executed anywhere close to 100%... and failures would lead to more people getting sick... and then more people dying.


You only need a few people not to follow the protocols and the result is disproportionately large spread. One problem with masks, apart from there not being enough of them in the world right now, is that some people think they're some kind of force-field that makes them totally immune and so they take less precautions. Really they're just an extra modifier to the risk, as shown by the number of medical staff getting ill despite all their protocols.

Also the minute one of your key staff come under a high risk category, gets sick, is isolated, etc... then you need to involve remote work anyway.


Just because you don’t have symptoms doesn’t mean you can’t spread it. What you outlined, wear a mask and carry on, that’s exactly the mentality that IS spreading it right now.


That'd be a great point if it wasn't for the fact that all the asian countries enforcing mask use are actually flattening the curve.


There is no place on earth that has said "Not symptomatic? Wear a mask and carry on." and seen the curve flatten. As you say, a lot of asian countries _are_ enforcing mask usage. But none of them are just "carrying on".

IIRC China is enforcing a "1 person per household is allowed outside once every three days for supplies" policy in the most affected areas, has built multiple new hospitals, has implemented multiple cordon sanitaires, locked down millions, has _free_ testing, and is enforcing that testing.

South Korea, Singapore, and Taiwan were among the first to ban flights from China (and given where they are that's MUCH bigger than the US doing so, both politically, and in percentage of flights). They are testing people constantly before they're allowed out of or in to places. They are _enforcing_ quarantines of people with fevers, they are interrogating people that might have been exposed to the disease, and are quarantining based on that, even without symptoms. They have a _lot_ more people staying home than usual. They are accessing people's financial data in real time without warrants.

No one's saying masks make things worse. Given how many masks we have, there's an open question as to whether we should reserve them for medical care providers or not. What people are saying is that masks are not enough. And they're right.


I love that they hate eating their own dog food. Remember when FaceTime was promised to be open because it was just SIP? Remember when iMessage let you connect to every service under the sun? Remember when MacOS had awesome remote access built in? Remember when the mail client didn’t wait an hour to tell you that a new email arrived? Remember when they built a server? They deserve to suffer a little here.


For reference, the original story is https://www.theinformation.com/articles/how-apple-is-working..., but it's hard-paywalled.


The Information has unlocked it for HN readers now (thanks!), so we've changed the URL from https://www.macrumors.com/2020/03/30/apple-work-from-home-ch....

https://hn.algolia.com/?dateRange=all&page=0&prefix=true&que...


Lack of screenshare on macos/ios is big one. It would be so nice to help parents to setup certain things.

Weird enough Apple support has that access tho. Just let me them know your Apple Id and pop-up appears...


macOS has great support for screen sharing: https://support.apple.com/guide/messages/screen-sharing-icht...


Now would be a great time to engender some global good will by putting some of that $250b in cash to work.

Tim Apple is starting to look a bit like Smaug atop his literal pile of money.




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