The Sunday Edition — 11.19.17

I vowed, from the moment Jaclyn and I found out we were going to be parents, to not bombard everyone we met with “We’re pregnant!”. We’re not the first people to expect a newborn in the history of the world and there’s nothing we’re experiencing that nobody else has experienced before us.

We’re into week 38 now, which means keeping my mouth shut is getting harder than ever. Baby brain hits more than just mom. I admire others who were able to keep it together and stay patient during these last few weeks. I hope a Sunday Edition or two into the future will bring good news.

Three Sunday Editions, three mentions of Star Wars. Eventually I’ll get over my childhood.

This week, Star Wars Battlefront II (PS4/Xbox/PC ) hit stores. I’ve always been a Battlefront fan, but Battlefront attempt #1 was poor. This time around, you don’t have to hook up online to enjoy 90% of the game and you don’t have to download a 25GB patch to play on day one.

The single-player, offline modes are what you’re buying in Battlefront II. I haven’t been disappointed. The campaign is great, albeit a bit short. You play as Iden Versio, commander of Inferno Squad in the days and weeks after the Battle of Endor in Episode VI. The worlds are beautiful. The characters are unique. And the story is intriguing.

The campaign is a bit schizophrenic though — you play about a third of the campaign as regular Star Wars heroes (Luke, Leia, Lando) and the other two thirds as Iden Versio. Iden’s story is good enough on its own to cut out those other heroes.

You’ll want to barge through considering the magnitude of information at the end. I’ll be a bit perplexed if Lucasfilm gave away such a big secret in a video game (Warning: Spoilers be here!), but the secret as it stands right now would be well explained.

Here’s a good review to get you started. Here’s one that’s a little less positive.

Some conversation came up this week regarding the Touch Bar MacBook Pro keyboard and all the fun stuff that comes with USB-C/Thunderbolt 3 (perhaps due to Marco Arment’s ode to the 2015 15” MacBook Pro).

There have been three major complaints with the latest MacBook Pros:

  • A shallow, loud keyboard with a new butterfly mechanism that can jam with just a speck of dust.
  • The real-world usefulness of the digital Touch Bar which eliminates the function key row and provides touchable buttons specific to each app.
  • An elimination of legacy ports like USB Type-A, HDMI, and SD card in favour of the new Thunderbolt 3/USB-C standard.

After a year with the 15” Touch Bar MacBook Pro, I’ve gone down each of these complaint roads and largely come out nodding in agreement. My keyboard has jammed two or three times to the point of needing to take it in to be opened up and repaired. I’m tired of having to carry around accessories to ensure connectivity with old storage devices. And I’m tired of having to shop for accessories that are MacBook-Pro-ready and don’t work with other, business-world devices.

I have a particular infatuation for the Touch Bar, though. I use it extensively in all apps. But it sounds like I’m one of the few.

Long story short, Apple’s parade of port changes on its high-end MacBook Pro has me frustrated. The adoption of Thunderbolt 1 and 2 was great, but wasn’t around long enough for the third-party market to adopt and produce low-cost, high-value devices. Instead, everything that natively plugs into the newest MacBook Pros are hard to find, expensive to buy, and full of fine print lingo limiting their capabilities. I hope Apple sticks to its guns with USB-C over the next 5 to 10 years to allow the market to catch up.

And needless to say, I’m looking forward to the arrival of my work laptop, which doesn’t appear to have too many compromises — other than it’s dated design.

This week, some further iPhone X reviews, some comedy, some photography, and a great playlist for finding focus during an 80 hour work week.

A Playlist for Focus

…and a course for focus:

Some Comedy

  • PR to English Translation For Selected Portions of EA's Response to Backlash Over ‘Star Wars Battlefront II’ Microtransactions — Audacious Fox

A Great Variety of Reads

And a Stunning Kettle

As always, thanks for reading. Happy Sunday and all the best in the week ahead.