How to Manage iTunes Store and App Store Subscriptions

There are lots of subscriptions you can purchase from Apple. They may be for services such as Apple Music and Apple News+. You may have subscriptions for specific apps that function on a monthly or annual payment. Or you may have subscriptions to third-party services—such as HBO NOW, Hulu, Pandora, or Spotify—that you’ve purchased through the iTunes Store.

It’s easy to manage these subscriptions once you find where to go. In this article, I’ll show you how to access information about your iTunes Store and App Store subscriptions, and how to cancel them.

Read the rest of the article on The Mac Security Blog.

How to Reset the Advertising Identifier on your Mac, iOS Device, or Apple TV

In this week’s episode of the Intego Mac Podcast, we discussed the “advertising identifier,” a unique identifier assigned to each Mac, iOS device, and Apple TV. The subject came up because the Mozilla foundation is calling on Apple to reset this identifier once a month.

The advertising identifier on an Apple device does not identify you personally, but it can be used by advertisers to create a profile about you. If it’s never reset, that profile increases in detail, allowing advertisers to target ads to you based on your Internet activity.

Mozilla’s point is that resetting this identifier prevents advertisers from developing rather detailed profiles on users, and is simple to do. It’s not a hardware identifier (such as the EMEI of your iPhone), but rather a number generated by your operating system.

However, you can manually reset this advertising identifier, and it’s a good idea to do so regularly. Here’s how.

Read the rest of the article on The Mac Security Blog.

Intego Mac Podcast, Episode 79: Solving a problem that isn’t there

Breaking news: folding phones are out, and they’re breaking. Is this a solution to a problem that doesn’t exist? We also discuss the possibility of Apple creating a Find My Everything app, and we look at advertising identifiers on iOS device, and Mozilla’s campaign to get Apple to change them every month.

Check out <a href=”http://podcast.intego.com/79”>the latest episode of The Intego Mac Podcast, which I co-host with Josh Long. We talk about Macs and iOS devices, and how to keep them secure.

The Next Track, Episode #145 – The Future of iTunes Redux

The Next Track Blue Flat Button2 400pxIt’s time to have a brief discussion of the future of iTunes again. Some news has been circulating suggesting that Apple will be including separate apps for music, TV, podcasts, and books later this year. We discuss this, and how we predicted this a few months ago.

Listen to The Next Track: <a href=”https://www.thenexttrack.com/148”>Episode #145 – The Future of iTunes Redux.

Find out more at The Next Track website, or follow The Next Track on Twitter at @NextTrackCast.

Theater Review: As You Like It, by the Royal Shakespeare Company

As You Like It is my favorite Shakespeare comedy. I don’t know why: perhaps it’s the fairly straightforward plot, or the fact that it’s all about people trying to be happy, or the wonderful language which doesn’t get too obscure, and just exudes enjoyment. It was also the first play I saw at the RSC after I moved to the UK in 2013. (Read my review of that production here, and my interview with Pippa Nixon and Alex Waldmann – Rosalind and Orlando in that production – here.)

As You Like It is certainly a crowd-pleaser, and it’s one of the plays that gets produced fairly often. I think the fact that the RSC is doing it so soon after its last production is mostly to do with the fact that the RSC is currently in a process of putting on all of the plays in a six-year period (though I think that may have slipped to eight years), and because they started filming their plays and broadcasting them to cinemas only at the end of 2013 with Richard II. So this production will eventually be part of the box set of all the plays on DVD and Blu-Ray.

This year’s production has a lot going for it, but will not please everyone. It’s quite minimalist; there are essentially no sets (though there is a thing that happens at the end). It opens with Orlando (David Ajao) sitting an a swing suspended from the rafters, above a circle of faux grass. The first half hour – the bit where he wrestles, meets Rosalind, and they both get banished – takes place with that grass on stage. When the action moves to Arden Forest, the grass is removed, the house lights come on, and there are announcements over some speakers at the back of the stage. I believe they say “All the actors to the stage,” which is followed by a few more announcements, then “All the world’s a stage,” referring to the famous speech by Jacques that comes in later. The back of the stage lifts up, and you can see the backstage area; the undecorated bit, the brick walls, the ropes tied to the walls; what the actors see when they’re behind the decor.

At the same time, most of the actors come out on stage and some clothes rails are rolled out with costumes. Some of the actors change their costumes, they all mill about, then the costumes are wheeled off and they pick up the play.

273453 As You Like It production photos 2019 2019 Web use

Photos by Topher McGrillis (c) RSC.

The first time I saw the play, I really didn’t get this, but the second time I think I understood what the director, Kimberly Sykes, intended. This is a literal interpretation of “All the world’s a stage,” with the actors showing that they are, indeed, actors, a sort of meta fourth-wall approach to the play. From this moment on, the lighting changes a bit until the end of the play, but the audience is part of the raw theatrical experience, and is almost always illuminated.

Since there are no sets, there are no trees anywhere to be seen. This is a forest, and trees are important in the play. It is either the vertical beams in the theater that are supposed to be the trees, or the audience itself, made up of hundreds of trees. (My suspicion is that it’s the latter, as Orlando pastes a few post-its with notes about Rosalind on different audience members.) All this means that the director’s vision isn’t entirely clear, and this may contribute to the many reviews that were ambivalent about the production.

In any case, looking at it through this point of view, it’s a charming, fast-paced studio play. The lack of sets makes it seem more improvised, and the fantastic Lucy Phelps is radiant as Rosalind, carrying the play throughout (Rosalind has about 20% of the lines in the play).

273544 As You Like It production photos 2019 2019 Web use

(It’s interesting to note that these production photos were shot during the dress rehearsal, but the director changed Rosalind’s costume to simple black trousers with suspenders over a white shirt. This change makes her look a lot more “pixieish,” and I think it works better. Her hair is also slicked back more, giving her a somewhat androgynous David Bowie look.)

There’s lots of audience interaction – see this article, about when I got on stage during one performance – and there’s lots of laughter and fun throughout. Sandy Grierson as Touchstone was marvelous, clowning around to keep the action moving, and Rosalind hops into the audience a few times. Anthony Byrne plays both dukes – Duke Frederick in court, and Duke Senior in the forest – and is wonderful in both roles, the former being powerful and angry, the latter being open and friendly.

273534 As You Like It production photos 2019 2019 Web use

Another quirk in this production is the 50-50 gender splint, which means that Jacques is a woman (Sophie Stanton), and Silvius is Sylvia (Amelia Donkor). This latter change alters some of the text, as Phoebe is in love with a shepherdess instead of a shepherd. I don’t think the Jacques was melancholy enough, but it was interesting to hear Stanton recite the famous “seven ages” speech.

Hats off to the many minor characters who gave their all, notably Charlotte Arrowsmith, a deaf actor, as Audrey, whose signs were interpreted by Tom Dawze as William.

Oh, and there’s that bit at the end with the massive puppet as Hymen, the god of love, giving benediction to the marriages. It’s the only large item on stage for the entire performance, and it is quite jarring. It’s imposing, and it’s really not necessary. I really don’t see why the director chose to close the play with something like this.

Having seen this production twice, I look forward to seeing it again before the run ends in August. If you can make sense of the staging, it’s lots of fun. The time went be very quickly, with never a dull moment. There were songs, lots of laughter, some tears; all in all, exactly what the world is like.

Problems with the Air Quality Index on the Apple Watch in the UK

Last week, Dave Mark posted an article about Apple Maps and the air quality index on The Loop. I had chatted with Dave before he had published this, pointing out that the system used in the UK is different from that in the US. In the US, the scale used goes from 1 – 500, and the UK uses a scale from 1-10.

Here in the UK, I do see the current AQI on Apple Maps, with the appropriate number, and a color that gives a visual idea of where it is on the scale. As you can see here, the AQI is quite poor, because there is very high pollen (death to rapeseed!), and Maps shows that with an orange background.

Aqi maps

My Apple Watch, however, gives different information. It shows that the AQI is indeed 8, but if you look at the AQI complication, you can see that the little dot is down at the green end of the scale. When I tap the complication, it says that the AQI is Good, which is clearly wrong.

Aqi watch2     Aqi watch1

It seems that, while the weather app on the Apple Watch is getting the right number, it’s not using the appropriate scale. It thinks that this is the US scale, so no matter what the AQI is in the UK, this will show as Good, because it’s matching it to a scale that goes up to 500.

This is a minor problem of localization: the Apple Watch knows where I am, and should provide the correct information. But it’s a pretty dumb one, that is easy to fix.