Let’s Talk About Something Else

March 22 2020

In an effort to talk about anything other than the coronavirus, I thought I’d write about other things that happened in the past week or so that interest me.

Animal Crossing screenshot
Source: Nintendo

First: Animal Crossing: New Horizons is out for Nintendo Switch. It’s very good. I haven’t played an Animal Crossing game since the GameCube, but this has a loop which feels more interesting. It’s also, obviously, a perfectly-timed bit of escapism. Stuck inside all day? Go escape to a deserted island, make some animal friends, and slowly build your own village. Delightful.

Secondly, Apple released a couple new products this week. This is probably a bad time to release luxury computing devices, but nevertheless, it’s a great time to be an Apple fan.

2020 MacBook Air
Source: Apple

The new MacBook Air looks fantastic. It has the new keyboard from the 16” MacBook Pro, which is a very good thing, because that keyboard is great. And now you can get a quad-core MacBook Air! That’s a nice upgrade. Plus, the price dropped by hundreds of dollars. That’s not a typo. Literally hundreds. If you need a new laptop for some reason (maybe you’re working remotely for the first time), this new MacBook Air is a safe and easy recommendation.

Apple also announced a new iPad Pro. It’s got a faster processor, two cameras, and LiDAR support for… some reason. But none of that matters, because you can buy a keyboard for it that suspends the iPad Pro in mid air. This lets you angle the iPad whichever direction you like and raises it closer to eye level while you’re typing.

iPad Pro and Magic Keyboard
Source: Apple

I mean, look at this picture. Is this not the coolest thing you’ve ever seen? The keyboard alone is $350 USD, so this picture is probably the closest I’ll ever get to owning one, but it’s undoubtedly an impressive engineering feat.

Also, the iPad will have mouse and trackpad support in an update coming out to everyone sometime in the next week or two. So you can try it out too! Once iOS 13.4 drops, set up any wireless trackpad or mouse you have around the house with the iPad and give it a go. It could bring the iPad one step closer to replacing your laptop.

Bill Gates
Source: Netflix

Thirdly, and this news is a little older than a week old, but it’s been a “slow” news week: Bill Gates stepped down from the board of directors at Microsoft. He hasn’t been CEO for a long time, but the man is a titan. This is the end of a pretty good run. He’s left to focus all his energies on humanitarian efforts. Good for him.

An image from Pixar's Onward
Source: Pixar

Finally, movie studios are digitally releasing films that were in theatres before this whole thing went down. This is obviously way ahead of their typical release plans, but the studios need to make money, and we all need something to watch. I’m looking forward to catching Pixar’s Onward, which will be available digitally in Canada on March 22nd.

Miscellany