Sir Apfelot newsreel week 24, 2023

Well, have you recovered from last week's WWDC information overload? This week we continued here in the blog with a few detailed posts. But also an overview of the Apple and tech news that I have noticed in the last few days should not be missing. And that's why the new Sir Apfelot newsreel is here. The issue for calendar week 24 of 2023 includes the following reports: the start of the e-prescription is accompanied by criticism, postage codes must be valid for more than 14 days, GPT-4 knows a lot of book content, Mac Pro bumps hard drives off, Sonoma without mail plugins, 3D content on Apple TV+ and more!

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In the Sir Apfelot newsreel for calendar week 24 of 2023 you will find the following reports, among others: Criticism of communication about the start of e-prescriptions, postage code of the post office must remain valid for longer, Amazon with a plan against fake reviews, GPT-4 known Books by heart, Mac Pro rejects SATA hard drives, and more!
In the Sir Apfelot newsreel for calendar week 24 of 2023 you will find the following reports, among others: Criticism of communication about the start of e-prescriptions, postage code of the post office must remain valid for longer, Amazon with a plan against fake reviews, GPT-4 known Books by heart, Mac Pro rejects SATA hard drives, and more!

Official timetable of the e-prescription accompanied by criticism

The e-prescription, which has been in development for some time, should now be ready for use from July 1, 2023. At least that's what the Ministry of Health announced. By August it should also be redeemable in around 80% of pharmacies nationwide. The fact that there are still hurdles in the way is one thing heise online has in common Article summarized. Various authorities have criticized the fact that the tests for e-prescriptions via health insurance cards are currently still running and that the necessary Gematik technology is not yet ready for use in all practices. We have already discussed this technology, which was criticized by the CCC, here: CCC-Fix should save 400 million euros and tons of electronic waste.

Cologne Higher Regional Court: Post may not render postage codes worthless after 14 days

Since 2020, you can buy a so-called “postage code” in the DHL app, i.e. an eight-digit sequence of characters that you write on an envelope to be sent instead of sticking a stamp on it. At that time, this offer replaced the “mobile phone postage” that had been offered until then. However, the Post equates the 14-day return period for postage codes with a usage period and renders the character strings worthless after two weeks. The costs for unused codes will not be reimbursed. The Cologne Higher Regional Court has now ruled that this is not legal and that the regulation of the post office is accordingly ineffective. A summary of the case and the Higher Regional Court decision can be found in Official press release on this.

Amazon Warehouse is now called Amazon Returns Purchase

Amazon has renamed its online store for returned products. Instead of “Amazon Warehouse” the whole thing is now “Amazon return purchase“. Supposedly, this change was made to more clearly describe what's on sale there. However, search engine optimization could also play a major role. After all, various sites - serious and dubious - advertise with Amazon returns and their sale. The combination of the search terms "Amazon", "returns" and "buy" is not an uncommon query in search engines. So now Amazon itself is jumping on the bandwagon, which, among other things, includes fraud sites (here and here) got rolling.

Amazon wants to take action against fake reviews with a new concept

Also, the company has one this week Entry published about (fake) reviews and how to combat them. Among other things, it was shown that in 2022 alone, a total of 125 million users took advantage of the opportunity to submit their opinions - with a total of 1,5 billion ratings and reviews. In the same period, however, 200 million suspected fake reviews were also stopped. In addition, these are not only arranged and remunerated via Amazon, but also via Messenger and social media, for example in Facebook groups. Three points should help in the fight: more cross-industry information exchange, clearer enforcement powers, and the assumption of responsibility by the platforms that enable the dissemination of fake reviews.

Research on books used for ChatGPT training

Also this week I stumbled upon the study "Speak, Memory: An Archeology of Books Known to ChatGPT/GPT-4" conducted at the University of California at Berkeley, California. As part of the investigation, ChatGPT and GPT-4 from OpenAI and BERT from Google were given various sentences from literary works as prompts, but a certain term was always missing. If the term (name, object, location, etc.) was added correctly, it was assumed that the corresponding book was used to train the text AI. In the case of ChatGPT and GPT-4 in particular, books with copyright were found in addition to public domain works. The top 20 were among others in the official preprint PDF mentioned.

"Disk not ejected correctly" on Mac Pro 2023 - Apple is working on a solution

Last week the new Mac Pro with M2 Ultra presented, since this week you can officially buy it. However, the launch is not without its teething problems. Because if you install an additional SATA hard drive in the Mac Pro 2023, you should not put it into hibernation at the moment. When the Mac wakes up again, the connection to the SATA storage medium is suddenly interrupted and the warning "Disk not ejected properly" appears. in one Support document from Wednesday Apple points out that a restart helps. It also shows how to prevent sleep mode and that an update is being worked on to fix the error.

macOS 14 Sonoma is the end for mail plugins

It has been a fact for a few years that Apple's Mail app would eventually no longer allow plugins. It was just unclear when this would end on the Mac. At SmallCubed, the developers behind the MailSuite plugin, there is now the Sonoma for macOS 14 Note, that of the Mail app – at least in the current one Beta version – no more plugins can be loaded. Later this year, anyone who wants to continue using the advantages of MailSuite can use the mail client called MailMaven, which SmallCubed has now developed itself. And also on other developer websites it is shown that the Mail App from macOS 14 Sonoma will no longer support plugins – about here.

Update: Is there a solution for mail plugins?

Today Jens contacted the support of the Mailbutler mail plugin and asked what was going on there in relation to the changeover macOS Sonoma it's planned. The response from their team was that they have a solution where the Mailbutler app will run as a standalone app and no longer as a plugin. Nevertheless, there will be the usual integration with Apple Mail. As a user, you won't notice a big difference.

Here is the response from Mailbutler support:

Plugins are no longer supported in macOS Sonoma. Apple announced about two years ago that it would no longer support plug-ins. So this change is not news to us and we are 100% prepared for it.
So don't worry - you'll still be able to use Mailbutler on macOS Sonoma!
The main difference will be that Mailbutler will no longer be available as a traditional mail plugin, but as a standalone application. However, Mailbutler will only be technically independent. In practical terms, though, Mailbutler will still be right there in your inbox for easy access.
All in all: You will also be able to manage your emails with Mailbutler in macOS Sonoma!

From my point of view, this indicates that there seems to be a way to integrate the functionality of “plugins” back into Mail in another way.

DockKit - Framework for controlling motorized iPhone holders

As last week iOS 17 presented the new stand-by function was shown, among other things. This ensures that the iPhone can be used as a bedside clock with a wide range of information and as a smart home center while it is being charged and when the display is horizontal. Developers can not only look forward to using this new function, but also to the integration of hardware - namely charging docks and holders that can automatically rotate and tilt the iPhone, e.g. B. for use as a webcam during a FaceTime call via the Apple TV. You can find an overview, the DockKit itself and the video of the corresponding WWDC23 session with this link.

Apple Vision Pro - 3D production for TV+ and naming issues in China

The Vision Pro, Apple's AR and VR headset, has also been announced presented last week. As part of this, it was mentioned that the device can be used to watch 3D films and series, among other things, in 3D! Of course, not only the offers of the competition are used (e.g. avatar films at Disney+), but also work is done on 3D content for the company's own streaming service Apple TV+. So should for that apple vision pro The series “Monarch: Legacy of Monsters” from Monsterverse was produced in the corresponding spatial video format (Which). In addition, the name "Vision Pro" has already been assigned as a product name in China, and Huawei holds the rights until 2031. Apple must either rename its own headset there or buy the naming rights from Huawei (Which).

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In the Sir Apfelot Blog you will find advice, instructions and reviews on Apple products such as the iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, AirPods, iMac, Mac Pro, Mac Mini and Mac Studio.