The WWDC edition of the Talk Show, ChatGPT, tall poppy syndrome

17 June 2024

John Gruber, of Daring Fireball, presented another edition of the Talk Show, at Apple’s annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC). The live show featured usual Apple executives Craig Federighi and Greg Joswiak, who were joined this year by John Giannandrea, perhaps best known for his work with Siri, Apple’s digital assistant.

I’m hardly an Apple aficionado, I only have an iPhone, but I still catch the WWDC edition of the Talk Show, just because I usually find the topics of conversation fascinating. I also read Daring Fireball daily. The website, not the RSS feed. Both experiences are essentially pretty much the same, so I opt for the website. But again, not because I’m any Apple fanboi, but mainly because a lot of what is published there is simply interesting to read.

I don’t usually watch the show in its entirety though, I listen, in podcast style, while doing other things. Two hours is a long time to sit and watch. But I took time this year to read some of the comments left on the Talk Show YouTube page. There’s a few unhappy campers out there.

A number of people were critical of what they considered to be Gruber’s rambling style of interviewing. I can’t say I’ve ever found that a problem, at least with the WWDC shows. He spends a bit of time introducing a topic, which sometimes need explanation, and then his guests respond. I suspect envy may be at the root of most of this criticism.

And a little bit of what, in Australia is referred to as, tall poppy syndrome. Some people also felt Gruber doesn’t ask hard enough questions, but I’m not sure that’s the intent of the WWDC edition.

The topic of Apple’s partnership with ChatGPT was raised, specifically the question of who is paying who for the technology that will power Apple Intelligence, their in-development AI platform. It’s been the subject of much speculation. A firm, but friendly, “no answer” was offered by Greg Joswiak, Apple’s head of worldwide marketing, however. Well, at least the question was asked.


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