Which Apple Watch gives you the Best Bang for the Buck?

I was wondering, if I were to buy an Apple Watch today, which model would give me the best CPU performance bang for the buck?  Turns out, it’s the Series 4:

CPU speed in MHz Price Price/Perf Ratio
Series 4 (GPS, 44mm) 2652 $250 10.6
Series 6 (GPS, 44mm) 3447* $429* 8.0
Series 5 (GPS, 44mm) 2652 $414 6.4
Series 3 (GPS, 42mm) 1326 $209 6.3
  • The Series 6 isn’t out yet, but is expected in fall 2020.  I base the Series 6 CPU performance estimate and price based on the history of Apple Watch speeds and prices.  And yes, the Series 4 and Series 5 have the same CPU speed, so we should be seeing a jump with the Series 6.

AppleWatchPricePerformanceRatio2020

Personally, I’m waiting for the Series 6 in the fall, because I want the sleep tracking and blood oxygen detection features that are rumored to be coming.  But if I didn’t care about these things, and had to buy a watch now, I’d try and find a Series 4.

Graco’s $70 Foam Crib Mattress vs. DaVinci’s $50 Hypoallergenic Crib Mattress

I needed a couple of mattresses for my kids and decided to try two different ones: The Graco Premium Foam Crib and Toddler Mattress in a Box, and the DaVinci Twilight Hypoallergenic Ultra Firm Crib Mattress.

DaVinci strengths:

  • Waterproof
  • Lightweight
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Inexpensive at $50

DaVinci weaknesses:

  • Noisy (every movement makes a squeaky sound)
  • Not as firm as advertised

gracodavinci

Graco strengths:

  • Firm and well made
  • Really comfortable (baby sleeps like a rock on it)
  • No noise

Graco weaknesses:

  • Price ($20 extra compared to the DaVinci)
  • Takes a day or so to expand to full size

Neither of these mattresses had any chemical smells.

Overall, if we had to do it again, we’d pick the Graco – for both kids.  Our youngest sleeps really well on it (every night for a week now).  Our oldest tosses and turns on the DaVinci.  DaVinci makes a good crib but they don’t make a great mattress.

Free Ebook: Take Control of Working From Home Temporarily

Glenn Fleishman of Macworld fame wrote a handy little ebook called “Take Control of Working From Home Temporarily”, and made it free for everyone.  I particularly liked Glenn’s analysis of famous BBC presenter Robert Kelly’s “office” setup:

takecontrolofworkingfromhometemporarilyanalysisofBBCpresenter

A few videoconferencing tools, such as Zoom, allow you to create a virtual background if the real one is not too presentable.  But if you’re forced to use something like WebEx, you’ll probably want to do like the professor in the video call above did.  (but keep the door locked so kids can’t interrupt you)

How to Fix iCloud Photos Sync

I use iCloud Photos Library to store my original photos in the cloud, to save space on my Mac.  Today I tried to download the full resolution version of a few of my older photos and they refused to download, coming up with an exclamation point error on screen and telling me to try again later.

Checking the console log didn’t reveal much: just a message from cloudphotod about the sync session/download failing.  No explanation of why, just some error codes – a different error code for each failed download.

I dug around on the Internet and found a way to supposedly fix the photos sync, by using the Photo Library Repair Tool.  This tool is built into the Photos app: Hold down the Option and Command keys while launching Photos.  Then follow the prompts:

Repair Photos Library on Mac

This worked great for me.  I was able to download my old photos again in full resolution after the repair was complete.  It took a few hours, but I was able to use my computer in the meantime.  Note that your search index for photo keywords will need to be rebuilt, so you will need to wait for that too if you want to search your photos.  This search index rebuild happens automatically, in the background.

 

9 Years Later, Siri is Still Inconsistent

After 9 years, Siri has gradually has gotten better.  But it’s maddeningly inconsistent:

  1. I’ll speak into my AirPods “Hey Siri, 24 minute outdoor walk” to start a workout on my watch.

    20% of the time, Siri replies with “I don’t see an app for that. You’ll need to download one.

    Repeat the same exact query to the AirPods seconds later, and bam, it starts the workout.

    Siri outdoor workout inconsistency

  2. I asked Siri to tell me about the wind.  A couple times, Siri gave me the definition of wind.

    Other times it will tell me the wind speed.

    Other times, for the same query, it will tell me the wind speed and direction, which is what I want!  But it’s always random what I get.

What will Siri reply with today?  Who knows.  Sure wish Apple would make it more consistent.

Sunset in Arcos de la Frontera, Andalusia, Spain

I took this photo on the winding streets of Arcos de la Frontera, in the Andalusia region of Spain.  Love the streetlight glow reflecting off the cobblestone walkway:

IMG_6296

In many places throughout town, the streets are so narrow, you’ll need to fold your car’s mirrors to fit.  It’s a challenging drive, as locals will whip around corners in their cars and come up behind you suddenly.

It’s worth going though.  There are many beautiful churches and castles high up on the cliffs of this town, along with excellent tapas and friendly people.  You may even come across a falconer.  (We did, and it was great fun holding his powerful birds of prey.)  I’ll save that story for another post.