The Google Stackdriver interface is already user hostile to a certain degree (Dropdown with 100 services, no search, typing letters doesn’t do anything) but some defaults never cease to annoy me.

Them: “Filter by label or text”
Me: Inserts text from log line
Them: “Thanks, we’ll filter for these 7 tokens independently”
Me: clicks 7 times to remove each one of them and pastes again with quotation marks

Since macOS 10.12 there’s a bug in Apple Mail that causes it to randomly become the frontmost application. If you are in full screen mode — like when you are giving a talk or watching a movie — it opens itself up in split view mode where it takes up half the screen while your other main window is being resized.

I saw this happening first hand when coworkers showed me something on their computers but never experienced it myself. This has been happening since at least macOS 10.12.

After some research it became clear that it’s related to Gmail and I’m not exactly the only one:

The proposed solutions are to disable Power Nap (I don’t see how that could be related) or to remove Gmail. I wouldn’t call any of these a viable solution.

Unfortunately now I’m also in the select group of people experiencing this bug.

I tried to confirm the theory of Gmail causing it and could partially reproduce it. The bug only seems to happen with Gmail accounts that are part of a G Suite account and not with my personal Gmail account. It happens 1-2 times per day.

Funnily enough the bug only started to show up when I got my new Mac Mini with a clean install of Catalina. This makes it pretty clear that this is not some third party app causing havoc but just yet another critical bug that hasn’t been resolved in an increasingly longer list of macOS releases. It’s not as critical as Mail.app deleting emails but it’s still not something you want to have happening every few hours.

I don’t even know what to say anymore. Even ignoring how it says 179 GB available in the prefpane and 95,07 GB in the error message, why is it an error at either of those values? It says that the oldest backups are deleted when my disk becomes full. Why does this error message exist?

Reddit has always had UX that could only be described as intentionally inaccessible. I actually ignored the site for years just because I disliked it so much.1 But sharing a link to a specific Reddit comment with the “new” layout really is something else. Earlier today I sent a direct link to the comment with the YouTube link, pictured in light blue above. This screenshot is what the recipient sees after opening my link. There are more than 4.2k comments in the thread to which I sent a deep link. But you can only see three and a half of them, because more than half of the screen is just other things put there to dRivE uP eNgAgEMeNt. We both work in tech, we both spend 90% of our time on the interwebs, and the recipient still reacted with “Wow, and the video in the comments is really crazy as well”. Because they didn’t see that I already specifically linked to that comment. And I can’t blame them at all.

Most of the time I just say (comment link!) right after sending a comment link, just to make sure. It’s always awkward and embarrassing to share such a link. Did they really get it? Or did they just read the post itself, not the specific super funny/important comment I linked to? Do I ask and make them feel bad/dumb? Do they now think I’m weird because they think I sent them the post instead of a comment, and the post doesn’t make sense for me to send? To some people I just would never even send any link to Reddit, because I’m so sure they would not be able to parse it. It’s almost as if they don’t even want me to share links. I’ll probably just use the new Apollo feature and send beautifully rendered “screenshots” of comments in the future. It is an insanely nice feature, and I hate that it is needed.

Bonus points for iMessage link previews, which have absolutely no visual difference whatsoever between a link to a comment in a thread and a link to the thread itself.


  1. Joke’s on me, I suppose – now I yearn for keeping that old layout. [return]

If you right click an item in the macOS Music.app where would you expect the contextual menu to show up?

1) Roughly in the area where you right clicked on
2) Not at all
3) Top left corner of the screen

Airmail has a fun new feature where you have to guess if any of the settings you’re trying to toggle is part of the premium subscription or not.

Thanks @herrherrmann for the post!

Some HTML tags are allowed. But not all! Don’t you just love it when a product has fun little games like that, where you can only find out relevant information by trial and error? No? Me neither.

That entire knowledge base entry has big “rest of the fucking owl” energy.

I guess Messages.app on iOS heard I was talking shit about its big (or little?) brother and felt left out. Let’s ignore the preview-less PNG image above, because it is almost 4 megabytes big and how could we ever expect iOS to handle such an amount of pixels. Instead, focus on not just one but two mysterious wireframe iMessage apps. Apparently they were both left over after I deleted the app which installed… one of them. iOS seems to hold them more dearly than me, because it freaks out when I try deleting them.

In Preview.app you have to really resize that Inspector window to see more of your data instead of more whitespace to the left. That way, when it finally reveals what you actually want to see, you get to feel a sense of pride and accomplishment.

Thanks @nickheer for the video!

A few days ago we joked about Bavaria in iMessage, as seen in the screenshot to the left. Yet when I search for “bavaria” on my MacBook, as seen in the on macOS screenshot in the top right corner, I only get one result from last year. Of course, when I manually scroll back a few days (which itself is an experience so laughably bad that I’m honestly at a loss for words) the message is obviously also available on my Mac – as seen in the lower right corner.

iMessage is eight years old. Never once in its entire existence has search on macOS (it’s such a long time that it wasn’t even called macOS back then!) worked properly. It is so ridiculously bad, there’s actually a third-party app that provides a functioning search. This total embarassment of a sitution is so old that said third-party app has been around long enough that I was still a student and too broke to buy the app back when I first heard of it. Instead, I built a poor man’s version myself – it’s just a simple SQLite database after all, nothing a few shell aliases couldn’t query quickly and efficiently. But apparently it’s still a problem too hard to solve for the almighty Apple.

Don’t even get me started on how utterly horrible the UX (it should not be called that, it’s just… pain) is for actually navigating between multiple search results on macOS. When I need to find something in my iMessages I just grab my iPhone. And let’s not forget that this option has only become viable since iOS13, before which it was just as bad on there as well.

Annoyances vented by Manuel Grabowski and Philipp Defner.

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