One thing I found in my Genius Bar experience is that people that are anxious about their iOS device battery life are constantly checking it to see the percentage and how much it has dropped from the last time they checked it. So if you check your device twice as much, simply to check on the battery life, you are essentially halving the time your device will last.

Stop freaking out and enjoy your life. There are more important things to worry about than your device’s battery life. The control freak inside you might freak out the first few days you do this, but you’ll get used to it.

You should read the whole Ultimate Guide to Solving iOS Battery Drain. It’s interesting throughout, and almost certainly some of the most informed writing available on the topic. But I particularly liked the suggestion to turn off your battery percentage indicator.

If the percentage indicator is on screen, I will look at it. It will distract me constantly, at least once per time that I look at my phone. This wouldn’t be so bad if the utility of having the indicator present outweighed the annoyance of having my attention repeatedly drawn to it, but it doesn’t.

While the percentage indicator tells exactly how much battery is left, the battery icon already provides a suitable approximation. I’ll wager that from the icon alone I can approximate within roughly 5% in either direction of the actual number. To me, this is totally acceptable. I very rarely need to know with more precision than this.

The less battery you have, the more important it becomes that you know exactly how much is left. Since iOS alerts you once you’ve hit 20% (and subsequently, 10%), it’s super easy to simply toggle the percentage indicator on once this happens.

Knowing exactly how much battery is left is simply not knowledge that makes me a more efficient smartphone user. Much to the contrary, it subtly distracts and stresses me out, and as the article points out, probably results in even faster drain. Since it’s so easy to turn it on whenever I really do need it, it’s much nicer almost always leaving it off.

(Plus it just looks cleaner.)



Under the influence of Bryan Irace, an iOS engineer at Tumblr, I’ve open-sourced a lot of handy iOS utilities lately. These are all polished, single-purpose units of code which should be cake to drop into your projects.


My biggest contributions to open source this year have just been convincing Jared to release all of this stuff.

What DSLR should I get?

I know nothing about cameras, but I’m going on a vacation this summer that I’d really like to have a DSLR along for. Since I don’t own one, I’m looking to either buy or rent. I have no idea how fast DSLR technology moves, but am fine with purchasing one as long as it isn’t going to become outdated too quickly. I’ll probably only use it two or three times a year, so I don’t want to buy something that’ll be antiquated by the fifth or sixth time I reach for it. If that’s going to be the case, I’d rather rent up until the point when I think I’d use it more frequently.

I’ve previously borrowed this camera from Nick Theusen, which definitely met my needs, quality-wise. I’m guessing I’d want to buy something similar, though being slightly more compact would be even better. Any suggestions?

When the app launches in the coming weeks, the company’s mobile apps will be updated to let you snooze messages not just to tomorrow, but back to your computer. The feature could come in handy on trips, for example, when you want to clear out most of your inbox until you get back to your desk so you can focus on more urgent messages while you’re traveling.
So excited for Mailbox for OS X.