46 episodes

Drew Coffman and Jon Mitchell met on the internet in 2012. It was a whole different internet back then. This is a podcast about what’s changed, where it’s going, and what it’s doing to our always-online society.

Internet Friends Drew Coffman, Jon Mitchell

    • Technology

Drew Coffman and Jon Mitchell met on the internet in 2012. It was a whole different internet back then. This is a podcast about what’s changed, where it’s going, and what it’s doing to our always-online society.

    37: Dracula Keyboard

    37: Dracula Keyboard

    Drew has a surprise for Jon! It’s an AlphaSmart Neo 2, a dedicated word processor. Jon, for his part, is thinking about buying a bass. They’re both seeking a lost feeling of having dedicated tools for the job they want to do. Increasingly, iPads and iPhones feel like general-purpose devices that can do lots of things, but they aren’t made for any particular thing, and in a lot of ways, they’re getting worse at each thing they can do as their capabilities get broader and more spread thin. Maybe creative work is better handled by specialized tools, and the digital part is better handled by… a desktop computer on an actual desk! What a concept!


    Want to be internet friends? Write to Drew and Jon or find us on Twitter at @_NetFriends.

    • 1 hr
    36: Push and Pull

    36: Push and Pull

    For a while, our tools were no better at handling information overload than our brains were, but that’s starting to change. Jon and Drew discuss the never-ending practice of checking things — apps, inboxes, notifications — for new information. Everybody knows that feeling of going around and around checking the same few places to see if there’s anything new. For years, the only alternative was to have notifications blowing up your phone at all times, which was obviously worse. Now, though, operating systems are starting to add new layers of notifications and widgets to make checking quicker, easier to handle, and less urgent.


    Want to be internet friends? Write to Drew and Jon or find us on Twitter at @_NetFriends.

    • 57 min
    35: Protective Amulets

    35: Protective Amulets

    Jon and Drew discuss the next-generation augmented reality interface that Apple has already released into the world: AirPods. Jon got the new AirPods Pro, and he’s experiencing them not so much as headphones but as cybernetic enhancements for his ears and voice. Sound is such a neglected part of our environment, and we’re often surrounded by loud and annoying noise, a day-to-day problem Apple’s audio products can address. With AirPods Pro, the right software, and an Apple Watch, it’s already possible to have a complete post-smartphone AR experience — it just doesn’t have a visual component… yet.


    Want to be internet friends? Write to Drew and Jon or find us on Twitter at @_NetFriends.

    • 54 min
    34: Demoted From Power User

    34: Demoted From Power User

    Both Jon and Drew are slowly wearing out from the constant grind of new third-party apps and — even more so — from the pursuit of ever more automation using tools like Shortcuts. At best, it feels like a Band-Aid patching up missing features that should be built in. At worst, it’s nerdy customization just for the sake of it, even at the expense of simplicity and usability. The Apple fan community is embracing it hard now that Shortcuts is built in on every iOS device, but Drew and Jon question whether this is what people really want. Jon also gives his impressions of migrating from OmniFocus to Apple’s new Reminders, about which he has also written an extensive review.


    Want to be internet friends? Write to Drew and Jon or find us on Twitter at @_NetFriends.

    • 1 hr 4 min
    33: You Captured the Bear

    33: You Captured the Bear

    Drew’s new phone has him wanting to talk about cameras. Photography is moving away from being a technical practice requiring lots of tool-specific knowledge that has little or nothing to do with composing an image. It’s becoming a prosthetic extension of our eyes and minds that just captures what we see and resurfaces it for us later, thanks to the software running on the portable supercomputers that are our cameras these days.


    Want to be internet friends? Write to Drew and Jon or find us on Twitter at @_NetFriends.

    • 1 hr
    SPECIAL: Apple September 2019 “By Innovation Only” Event

    SPECIAL: Apple September 2019 “By Innovation Only” Event

    Apple announced pricing and timing for Arcade and TV+, a new iPad, Apple Watch Series 5, and the iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro. They were pretty strong updates — Jon orders the watch live on the show, Drew will get the iPhone 11 Pro as soon as possible — but the most exciting news was probably the pricing, which is definitely friendlier than things have been for a while.


    Want to be internet friends? Write to Drew and Jon or find us on Twitter at @_NetFriends.

    • 1 hr

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