Spillikins # 607. The great Chinese deception, two tricks in one place


Every week, event after event, hands just don’t reach everyone. NVidia plans to buy ARM, according to rumors, the deal will amount to $ 40 billion. If the deal goes through, the world will be completely different, this event should be viewed in the perspective of 10-15 years, when thanks to it literally everything will change. Another thing is that the trade war leads to the emergence of its own industry in China, and it will be completely different from the one that exists here and now. We live in an interesting time of change. And against the background of this fuss, almost no one pays attention to climate change, which is already leading to natural disasters. I don’t want to croak, but their scope and number will only grow, there is simply no other way. We will touch on this topic in the corner in this issue, but let’s start with the usual series. Go!


  1. Apple attacks Epic Games, corporate retaliation
  2. The great Chinese deception – 50% discount, you must hurry to buy!
  3. Record holder for operating time – Galaxy M51
  4. California fires and the use of technology in them
  5. Fast food of the world of entertainment – “Guys” and “Mulan”, two opposites
  6. Raised by Wolves, Ridley Scott TV Series

Apple attacks Epic Games, corporate retaliation

The war between Epic Games and Apple continues, and the stakes continue to rise. Those who wish to plunge into the essence of this conflict can view the chronology, it depicts the main milestones of this collision.

It may be worth collecting all the materials on the confrontation in a separate text, and also updating it weekly, since the number of links will only grow, and we have not even gotten to the main events yet.

At Apple, the actions of Epic Games caused exaltation, because this is an attack on the holy of holies, the corporation’s cash cow. And now Apple is trying to do what they do best, create an image for Epic Games.

The corporation has filed a lawsuit in the District Court of Northern California, in which it indicates that Epic Games has violated agreements between the companies. It follows from the lawsuit that Epic Games earned $ 600 million in the App Store for the entire time. Apple is asking the court to compensate the company for damages, and it is estimated at the sum of all income that Epic Games received from the presence in the App Store. This logic is somewhat strange to me, to say the least. That is, Apple wants to take payments for the game from Epic Games, at the same time forgetting that during this time they received almost $ 300 million as their commission. The approach is surprising, but this lawsuit should be taken as a means of pressure.

The lawsuit was written in order to be quoted in the media, this is part of a large PR campaign. In particular, it contains the following lines: “Unbeknownst to Apple, Epic has been busy recruiting a legion of lawyers, journalists and technicians to launch a covert attack on the App Store. Shortly after 2 am on August 13, 2020, the morning Epic activated its hidden fee theft feature, Sweeney again emailed Apple executives stating that Epic would no longer comply with Apple’s payment processing rules. ” Or this snippet: “Epic’s lawsuit is a disagreement over money. Epic Games is trying to show itself as a modern-day Robin Hood, in fact, this is a multi-billion dollar enterprise that does not want to pay anything for the benefits of the App Store. ”

Handsomely? Not that word. The exchange of claims will continue in the future, this is part of legal battles, while the possibility of a settlement agreement looks unlikely. Another story was that Epic Games publicly announced that Apple will disable the “Sign in with Apple” function since September 11, that is, all players can lose their access to the game if they do not have a separate password and login.

Spillikins # 607. The great Chinese deception, two tricks in one placeSpillikins # 607. The great Chinese deception, two tricks in one place

To understand the absurdity of the situation, suffice it to say that Apple’s authorization service itself, in theory, should be independent of disputes with a particular company, it should work for users. And the reaction to this news was very unequivocal, many developers realized how such a “convenient” way makes them dependent on Apple. It is one thing when the risks are theoretical, it is quite another when you are shown how they can be realized in practice.

Inside Apple, apparently, they realized that such actions were not in the company’s hands, and did not turn off the “Sign in with Apple”, which was reflected in Epic Games in subsequent messages. Nevertheless, the company advises to create a password and login for everyone who has not done so.

To me, the whole story of the confrontation looks like a war of survival for Epic Games. They bet everything that they can defeat Apple, and if this does not happen, then they can be destroyed in the most direct, uncomplicated sense of the word. So far, we see how quickly the rates are rising in this confrontation.

The great Chinese deception – 50% discount, you must hurry to buy!

For a long time I stopped believing in miracles, especially when they happen to Chinese manufacturers / stores, which arrange sales at a loss. Unlike Russian operators and big players who really do this, Chinese players sell goods at prices that keep them profitable, albeit at the lowest level. There is no such thing that a good product is given for a penny.

I came across an advertisement for Poco X3, on AliExpress this model flew like hot cakes, a little over 50 thousand people bought the device.

Spillikins # 607. The great Chinese deception, two tricks in one placeSpillikins # 607. The great Chinese deception, two tricks in one place

The specifications are quite interesting – Snapdragon 732, 4/64 and 6/128 GB, IPS matrix, but with support for 120 Hz, a screen diagonal of 6.67 inches (brightness up to 450 nits is announced in the advertisement). Battery 5160 mAh, fast charging. Four cameras, of which two are 2-megapixel modules.

You read these characteristics, and it seems that we have a wonderful miracle in front of us, a model that is very profitable. The older version was billed at $ 249 and is really popular. It does not really stand out from the offers that are on the market from Chinese companies with comparable quality. The advantage is that the declared frequency is 120 Hz, a sort of lure. And many buyers sincerely believe that they will receive the very best device in the world, it will not have any flaws. But even the camera unit demonstrates that the manufacturer is trying to show off, gaining its own not by the balance of characteristics, but rather by their number. And this is an eternal story when they try to sell you a product, presenting it as if it is noticeably better than it really is. There is nothing wrong with that, it is just that sometimes such stories take them to the next level.

The same AliExpress also wants to show off, take a model that costs 249 dollars, and make a “discount”. I was, of course, amazed at the original cost of $ 1 for the older model. Which universe? Who is this written for? For those who are constantly looking for some kind of discounts and are ready to turn off their brain?

I was not too lazy to just look for similar offers, I came across the Huawei P40 Pro. Moreover, by searching I found articles on third-party resources, where it is argued that it is high time to buy this device, since for the first time it fell in price by 50%!

Spillikins # 607. The great Chinese deception, two tricks in one place

It is not superfluous to say that the device has never cost 120 thousand rubles. This did not happen to him. The official cost at the moment is 69 rubles.

Spillikins # 607. The great Chinese deception, two tricks in one placeSpillikins # 607. The great Chinese deception, two tricks in one place

When you add to the cart, there is an additional discount of 5 rubles, plus they give you wireless charging as a gift. It turns out that the price in Russia, plus or minus, coincides with the “discount” cost on AliExpress. Is this cheating? Definitely yes.

And such examples can be cited a huge number, their darkness at least, great darkness as a maximum. I did not do the calculations, I will leave it to the meticulous pedants. This approach is not very close to me, but in the case of Poco, it seems to me that a combo occurs when one is superimposed on another and an unimaginable sentence arises.

Someone might get the impression that I scold Poco, but this is definitely not the case. For its segment, this is a completely adequate offer, in which everything corresponds to its value. It is possible to believe in miracles that there is someone who knows how to refute the economics of the market, the cost of components and give away cheaply what is expensive. But practice shows that everything is arranged much simpler, and what is given for this money is worth it, and the miracle did not happen again. Although, it’s probably a shame to realize that I was buying a lucrative offer, but it’s no different. You should not believe in miracles, perhaps you should scrutinize what you are offered. And try to understand what the “non-greedy” manufacturer suddenly saved on.

Record holder for operating time – Galaxy M51

For Samsung, the entire M-series is a story about online sales, the models are not initially planned as mass models, available in all sales channels. And in terms of price / quality ratio, very interesting devices often come across, one of which is the Galaxy M51. The model has a record battery, among major manufacturers this is the first example of a smartphone with a 7000 mAh battery. Chinese manufacturers in 2017-2018 massively took the 10000 mAh limit in a smartphone, you can recall Oukitel, Blackview and others. But usually such smartphones were bulky, weighed over 300 grams, and at the same time, non-optimal other components led to rather low results. They set records in runtime, but energy efficiency was low. Like an American car, where the engine power levels off the work on other systems and brings the car to the desired characteristics.

Spillikins # 607. The great Chinese deception, two tricks in one place

Samsung approached the issue a little differently – not just a large 7000 mAh battery, but an optimization of the entire system. The weight of the device is 213 grams, it is thicker than most models of the line, but this completeness is not excessive, ergonomics has not suffered much.

The diagonal of the screen is 6.7 inches, SuperAMOLED, which also adds to the economy of work. The chipset is Snapdragon 730 (8nm), it is also energy efficient. All this together creates a device that easily surpasses any records of operating time, despite the large bright screen.

The official runtime specs look very attractive:

  • Wi-Fi up to 24 hours;
  • LTE up to 23 hours;
  • video playback up to 34 hours;
  • audio playback up to 182 hours;
  • talk mode in LTE up to 64 hours.

I can note that these characteristics are true. Look at how this device worked for me for two days, without any restrictions, on an LTE connection (a total of 1.5 GB of data, plus about 1 GB of Wi-Fi, 45 minutes of calls). The screen lasts about 12 hours, there are also no restrictions on brightness. And at the same time I used my smartphone in areas with poor reception, I traveled a lot with GPS turned on.

Record? Definitely. You can also add that there are people who know how and want to customize their smartphones so as to get the most out of them. For them, this model is ideal, as you can get 24 hours of screen life in real conditions. At the same time, 25W charging allows you to quickly charge your smartphone, it takes less than 2 hours to fully charge. In half an hour, you will receive 34% of the charge, which, in principle, is a whole day of work for an ordinary person (here, of course, everything is individual). This device for those who are not too active can give up to a week of work from one charge, which also looks like a fantastic result.

In Russia, the 6/128 GB version has already gone on sale, the cost is 29 rubles. Not the lowest price, I would like this device at a cost of 990 thousand rubles, but everything is justified, as soon as you remember about the screen, the operating time. This model will be extremely popular among those who are looking for a tenacious smartphone, do not like to charge their device all the time. The review will be in the week, so come along. The device turned out to be extremely interesting due to the battery.

California fires and the use of technology in them

The penetration of new technologies into the world is happening so quickly that often the very scope of these changes and the unexpected consequences of what is happening are not obvious. In California, climate change has led to heatwaves, resulting in wildfires in both the state and neighboring Oregon. Forests are burning, people are being evacuated to other places, according to the latest data, forced displacement affects almost a million people. To assess the scale of an emergency situation familiar to our world, one can recall the biblical outcome, demographic estimates of that event rest at 3.5-4 thousand people. It is clear that the world was different, as well as the number of peoples, but the very scale of perception in the eyes of a modern person is imposed on the current world. It was like a huge country took off and went on migration, although the dimension of that world was completely different.

It is interesting to read about the California fires also because many different techniques are involved in them. First of all, these are satellites and images of fire centers, in the media you can find colorful pictures that describe the situation almost in real time. There is a telephone warning system (911 initiative), when you receive an evacuation order on your device, it beeps shrilly and you cannot turn off this sound. Operators on the heads can recount those who are in the disaster zone, get their coordinates. The danger of forest fires is that the fire spreads very quickly, often people do not have time to hide from it, even in cars. It is difficult to imagine, many believe that there will always be time to hide, and the result is that search parties find people in burnt cars, since they could not hide or simply suffocated, as the smoke filled the entire space around.

Lines of cars are lined up on the roads, an evacuation of this scale causes traffic jams, cars can hardly crawl. And this happens outside of megacities, where such an evacuation would lead to many kilometers of traffic jams instantly. There are practically no vacant hotels in the clean zone; fire victims are waiting for them to find out what happened to their housing. In this lottery, many lose, because only the smoldering embers remain from the house, but in someone there is a glimmer of hope. I was struck by one moment, people use their phones to check what is happening with their homes. Many Americans have ordinary telephones with answering machines, they were popular in the 80s, and little has changed since then, only young people are tied to their cell phones, but answering machines continue to live in their homes. Calling your phone number and working with an answering machine is perceived as one of the biggest gains in life, which means that the house has not been damaged in the fire. It is surprising that neighbors living on the same street often get different results of this check – some have no home phone available, while others he cheerfully asks to leave a message.

I searched various forums, constantly read local articles about the fire. Nowhere did I see any mention of a smart home and the fact that it somehow kept the owners informed of what was happening. The objective reason was that this is a kind of remote place where people who are far from excesses live, many can be called hard workers, alien to unnecessary, in their opinion, waste of money. On the other hand, wired Internet and telephone lines work almost everywhere, there is mobile Internet where it was before. The quality of coverage in these areas leaves much to be desired, local operators set up base stations in settlements, but outside of them the connection very quickly leaves, in the same forests it is almost never there. And in this America is very different from Russia, where operators set up base stations in such a way as to capture the widest possible network coverage area.

As an illustration, I will cite last week’s story of what happened in Sochi. On the morning of September XNUMX, a group of eleven people, including eight children, walked up the mountains in the direction of Rose Peak. A group from Tver went to the mountains without warning anyone, without registering their route. Which in itself was already at least strange for a group that consists of children and does not have a local guide. Further – more, in the evening the group did not return, and the relatives sounded the alarm. None of the children and adults got in touch, the weather in the mountains was not the best, they were afraid that the children could get into a mudflow. The search began at night and continued in the morning. One of the children was able to get in touch, he called from his phone and was able to send the coordinates at the moment when he caught the network. After that, the group was safely taken downstairs.

The story itself shows a disregard for the mountains, for safety and the lack of elementary norms of behavior in such places. The fact that these are habitable places, there are a lot of official trails and routes, does not make the mountains safe. You need to realize that everything can change overnight, especially when the weather is not the best. You can also get lost in a familiar forest, not to mention the one in which you go for the first time and know nothing about it. It’s good that this time everything worked out and the presence of communications made it possible to evacuate the group. Now imagine that something similar happens during a natural disaster, when there is not one group of such people, but hundreds, and they are scattered over a huge area. Here, everyone should worry about their safety on their own, there is simply no other recipe. And there is no doubt that modern smartphones can provide an additional layer of protection. They can and should have cards that can work without a network, going on a hike, you should take care of the presence of external batteries. It’s trite, but many people don’t do that either.

Another sign of fires in California was thick smoke, which turned the evenings red. The first association, that the inhabitants of the region unexpectedly got on the shooting of “Blade Runner”, is exactly the same color of the sky.

Spillikins # 607. The great Chinese deception, two tricks in one place

Source: Philip Pacheco

In Moscow, I heard such a judgment from several different people that the media “tinted” the pictures in order to catch up with the horror, and the sky simply cannot be like that. Friends of mine in California claim that the photos do little to capture this red and that they were unwillingly caught in a disaster movie. I was especially pleased with the discussion in which people with “common sense” argued to Californians that this sky is just a filter in photo and video editing programs, and nothing like this can happen in real life. Our civilization has created a huge virtual space for all points of view, and has also brought up several generations of people that believe only their eyes, but not the opinions of eyewitnesses. But this medal also has a downside, often eyewitnesses observe a small piece of the event and draw far-reaching conclusions from this, and the fact that they were eyewitnesses gives their opinion in their own eyes a certain indisputability.

There is no doubt that technology is helping in some way in the fight against natural disasters. But the biggest impact today is the ability to see live such a disaster unfolding. And here, probably, it is important that you have the desire to do this, many cataclysms go completely unnoticed, as they are not picked up in the media. We do not have the means to fight the elements, but the ways of how to broadcast and look at the disaster are becoming more sophisticated and unusual. There is no logic here, because, it would seem, everything should be exactly the opposite. But disasters seem like a long way off, while people need entertainment on a daily basis.

Fast food of the world of entertainment – “Guys” and “Mulan”, two opposites

TV series have become modern books, forgive me for such a comparison. But it is the TV shows that everyone from small to large watches non-stop, absorbs them in batches, and to some extent they have replaced detective stories, romance novels and similar fiction of the past. This is a good topic for discussion in the company, and the discussion is not about what happened in the plot, but about the actors. For example, one of the works that is heard was the dystopian TV series “Icebreaker” (Snowpiercer). Many people like this series, it perfectly plays the main character Jennifer Connelly, an actress who has become much prettier with age, she is damn charming. Comparing Jennifer Connelly in 2020 with her in the 2000 film Requiem for a Dream (I love this film – heavy, dark, but good), I vote for her today.

Spillikins # 607. The great Chinese deception, two tricks in one place

The typical discussion of this show is very simple, it doesn’t have any deep thoughts. You’ve seen? Liked? If you haven’t seen, then look, the main character is charming. Most of the judgments are superficial, and not the stupidest people say that, there is no discussion of thoughts, events and anything that requires reflection. People share their emotions whether it’s worth watching the show or not. Please note that in your life most of the discussion about TV series probably follows approximately the same pattern. This automatically blots out any meanings that are laid by the creators, makes the series a chewing gum, albeit made in different techniques, with different budgets and quality.

Probably, feeling this, Netflix and Amazon post seasons at once, do not stretch them over several months, when one episode is released once a week. And this makes sense, since many people watch the series in one gulp, do not wait for new episodes, there is always something to do. My friend, after discussing “Ice Breaker,” watched the whole season in one evening, considering that there are ten episodes of 45-50 minutes in a season, this can be done only by skipping some scenes. And this is also a characteristic of how many of us watch such films. They do not look for some deep meaning here, this is entertainment, and nothing more. As a child, I remember that many people read books in exactly the same way, skipping over a few pages to read the most interesting things faster.

Against this backdrop, Amazon attracted the ire of fans of the series “Boys” (The Boys). The first season last year came out in a familiar fashion, all ten episodes in one go. But they decided to release the second season in a completely different way, the first three episodes at once, and then one episode once a week. The excuse was that each episode is so dynamic that there should be room for discussion, waiting and the like. I think these explanations sound lightweight, and the reason is much more mundane. In the era of a pandemic, the filming of new series has slowed down, and therefore it is necessary to stretch what is available for the longest possible time.

Should you watch Boys? The series is praised by everyone who loves the heroic theme and a look from the other side, when the heroes are not so pleasant in life. Curiously, this is exactly the same gum as most of these works. On the other hand, why, in fact, not and what kind of prejudices. Filmed well, there are enough special effects, so you can pay attention to it, no worse than other works.

Spillikins # 607. The great Chinese deception, two tricks in one place

The pandemic has left its mark on the entire industry, and when we discuss the fall in movie theater revenues, it seems like a temporary phenomenon. But the pandemic and isolation have set in motion processes that will be difficult to stop. For many, TVs at home have become large enough to watch a particular movie with high quality. Of course, they cannot be compared with any cinema, let alone IMAX, but between the risk of going to the outside world and staying at home, many choose the latter.

Disney felt it well, and their fairy tale “Mulan” in the corporate style for children and adults became the first picture that was spread in the new environment. In some ways, this can be considered an experiment, since streaming services showed full-length films before, but they gave them as part of a subscription. Now, being a Disney + subscriber isn’t enough ($ 6.99 a month in the US), you also need to pay $ 29.99 for the movie itself. The price looks very high for a digital copy of the film, comparable to a ticket to an IMAX movie theater in New York, or two tickets somewhere off the beaten path to a regular movie theater. To say that it is expensive is to say absolutely nothing. Expensive for the United States, and therefore expensive for the rest of the world. You need to be a subscriber of the service, and only then you will receive the movie. It will remain in your library until the moment you subscribe to the service. It’s not very clear what happens if you interrupt your subscription for a while, I suspect that the movie will disappear from the library. From December 4, the film will be free for all service subscribers. The model is curious, and I was curious to understand how it affects the entire streaming service.

An analysis from Sensor Tower found that installs for the Disney + app rose 68% in the week of Mulan’s premiere, while revenue rose 193%. Disney already tried this approach in July with Hamilton, one of the most anticipated new releases, and is considered an absolute hit. Indirect estimates showed that the announcement of the film in this vein led to an increase in the Disney + subscriber base in the United States by 458 thousand users, and in the world – by 780 thousand people. The numbers are impressive and show how this approach works. And this means that the pandemic has reshaped people’s habits, they are ready to spend large sums on watching films at home, digital distribution is experiencing an unprecedented rise. These changes have come to us for a long time.

Raised by Wolves, Ridley Scott TV Series

Having touched on the topic of serials, I cannot but tell about one of the novelties of this season, it attracted the attention of many. It’s about the TV series Raised by Wolves by Ridley Scott. You will like the plot of the plot.

The war ended on Earth, the sun worshipers, the followers of Mithra, lost the battle, they were defeated by atheists. The war was brutal, and the end was predictable, the complete destruction of the planet. The apocalypse took place live, and the war on the wreckage of the world emphasized the madness. As one of the heroes said, “the whole world went crazy, it happened instantly.”

Atheists released into the world of androids that they knew how to destroy people effectively and ruthlessly, were not bound by any laws of robotics. The Mithraists did not lag behind, they also used androids to kill, but limited their consciousness.

High technologies, a war of attrition, and against this background, the relationship between people and machines – this is a short plot of the plot. The last race of mankind is the development of the distant world of Kepler-22B, where before that there was no human being. Atheists are sending two androids with human embryos to raise humanity on this planet. The Mithraists build an ark and fly at a slower speed to start over, but build a peaceful society. This is a race that will lead to unpredictable results, the fate of humanity will depend on a couple of heroes and their actions.

The question posed in this ten-episode series is simple: can an android be smarter and more human than humans. Can a machine built for mass murder empathize and count it as a software failure? How do people behave? Are they empathetic or not? The series poses these questions very subtly and multifaceted, although the philosophical aspect is hidden behind a layer of adventure clichés drawn from “Prometheus”, “Alien” and other works of Sir Ridley Scott. He participates in this project, and the hand of the master is easily recognizable. So far, only five episodes have been released, but this series promises to be one of the most significant events of the season. Excellent science fiction with a subtext that makes you think about who is more human – an android or a person born to another person. Is it worth watching? Definitely. Below are screenshots from a couple of episodes.

Spillikins # 607. The great Chinese deception, two tricks in one placeSpillikins # 607. The great Chinese deception, two tricks in one placeSpillikins # 607. The great Chinese deception, two tricks in one place

PS Have a good working week, I hope that TV shows will not swallow you up, and there will be plenty of time for walks and communication. While the weather still allows, you need to use it and enjoy the warm days. Autumn is already coming into its own, rain and slush await us. But I hope that your mood will be great so that you can survive this season with a smile.

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