Why I wanted to intern at Apple

I just found this while reviewing some very old backups. Like most things of this ancient era, I’d completely forgotten about it, so it’s been fascinating to look back – as if in the 3rd person – at my younger, far away self.

I don’t recall why exactly, but evidently I had to write some kind of cover letter in order to intern at Apple. I don’t even know if this was addressed to Apple, or was perhaps just part of the visa process.

Statement of Motivation

My internship offered at Apple Computer Inc. is a fantastic opportunity for me to be introduced to and get involved with one of the worlds leading and most innovative technology companies.  It will provide exposure to their current – and possibly future – hardware products, as well as the processes by which they develop them.

Additionally, the time in the U.S.A. will provide exposure to U.S. culture and general life, which will be an invaluable grounding should I pursue further work in the U.S.A. (at a later date).  While I have no immediate plans to do so, I would certainly like to have the option, as the U.S.A. is the worldwide hub for development of advanced computer technology – the best place for someone in my industry to end up.

In terms of furthering my studies and career, the impact is almost immeasurable.  My employability – not just in Australia, but also internationally – will be increased tremendously by the internship, both from the training and experience provided as well as from the impressive addition it would make to any resume.  Specifically, I hope it will open the door to future employment at Apple Computer Inc.

On a personal level, I’d like to see a bit of North America as a tourist, as much as I can – visit all the cliché spots, like the Grand Canyon, Death Valley, Yosemite, all those.  I think it’d be a great experience, and hopefully a lot of fun.

21-year-old me, in 2005

I’ve been to all three of those places now. Two out of the three were indeed fun, as hoped.

A fun footnote was that the internship paid $25 US / hour, @ 40 hours per week. That was about $33 AUD / hour, given exchange rates at the time. That compared preeetty favourably with my prior internships – $18.50 AUD / hour at NEC, $15.79 AUD / hour at PIRVic – and beat the pants off the first real job I recall having, at a flower nursery, in high school, for an amazing $5 AUD / hour.

iOS Family Sharing users cannot mix authentication schemes

Apple supports two styles of two-factor authentication, that they call (and distinguish as) “two-step” vs “two-factor”.  “Two-step” is their older method, though functionally they’re basically equivalent.

If you have multiple accounts on a Family Sharing arrangement, and some use “two-factor” while others use “two-step”, you’re in for a bag of hurt.

For example, any time you change the password on any of the non-master accounts, you’ll have to reauthorise all devices on that account with the master purchaser.  You’ll be prompted, when trying to download apps or purchase anything etc, with a dialog saying “Your Family Organizer, [foo], must enter the security code for their payment method”, asking for some kind of input.  There is literally nothing you can enter there that will make it work.  Not the password for any of the relevant Apple IDs, not any security codes for any credit cards, nada.

The problem is that it’s asking for a verification code that you can only create on a device which has “two-factor” authentication enabled.  Compare for example what you see with “two-factor” authentication enabled on your iDevice:

Screenshot of two-factor authentication enabled in iOS account settings

Versus what you see with “two-step”:

Screenshot of two-step authentication enabled in iOS account settings

That “Get Verification Code” “button” is what you’re looking for.  As you can see, it simply doesn’t exist with “two-step” authentication enabled.

The only solution – to allow your family members to download apps, purchase music / videos / books / etc, or pretty much do anything else on their iDevices – is to force the master account over to “two-factor” authentication.

To do this, you have to go to https://appleid.apple.com/ and turn off “two-step” authentication (which will require you to complete some stupid ‘security’ questions).  You cannot turn off “two-step” authentication from any of your actual iDevices’ Settings apps.

Then, stupidly, you can’t actually enable “two-factor” authentication from that same website.  That can only be done in the Settings app on one of your iDevices – by (in iOS 10.3 or later) going into Settings ➜ <your name at the top of the list> ➜ Password & Security.

There’s no way to enable “two-step” authentication anymore.  And not having any form of two-factor authentication enabled is a very bad idea.  So if any of your family’s accounts have “two-factor” authentication enabled, you basically have to switch to “two-factor” on all of them.

Which would be broadly fine, if Apple hadn’t made it so needlessly complicated, and the two systems so incompatible that their own software can’t figure out what’s going on.