Trending February 2024 # This Beautiful Coffee Table Book Showcases Apple’s Industrial Design Prowess # Suggested March 2024 # Top 6 Popular

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Much ink has been spilt about Apple’s industrial design skills and the polarizing look and feel of its unapologetically sexy gadgets. Jonathan Zufi’s photographic shrine of Apple’s design work is taking it all to the next level. The 42-year-old Australian native has managed to put together a massive 326-page coffee table sized book containing detailed photographs he’s meticulously taken over the years.

It showcases Apple products and their packaging from the designer’s point of view, unlike any Apple book you’ve ever held in your hands. This has got to be the most original and detailed tribute to Apple’s design prowess I have seen to date, check it out right past the fold…

Aptly titled Iconic: A Photographic Tribute to Apple Innovation, the book focuses on beautiful photographs and precise typography which somewhat resembles Jony Ive’s iOS 7 work. It actually owes its concept to the Shrine of Apple website that Zufi created a few years ago as a place to post photos of Apple’s product.

Here’s a short video about Iconic.

Drawing from the website’s 3,500+ photos and an astounding 150,000 product shots the author himself has meticulously taken in his photographic studio in Atlanta, the mouth-watering book offers a uniquely detailed insight into “the progression of more than three decades of product design that has made Apple the brand it is today”.

The 12-by-9.625-inch book features over 650 products, each personally bought and paid for by Zufi out of his own pockets. This “photographic shrine” is divided into six chapters: Desktops, Portables, Peripherals, iDevices, Prototypes and Packaging.

The foreword was penned by no other than Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak and famed Apple blogger Jim Dalrymple. Each chapter begins with an introduction by a different luminary “who has been a part of the Apple community”, such as ZDNet columnist Kenneth Hess, Apple employee #12 Daniel Kottke, Belkin CEO Chet Pipkin and others.

For instance, an introduction to a chapter on desktops features a circuit board from the original Apple computer, the Apple I, and Daniel Kottke’s words describing it as “primitive as the Model T” compared to today’s electronics.

Betsy McKay at the Wall Street Journal explains Zufi intentionally captured stunning color photography of each Apple product set against the same type of futuristic white backdrop used on the Apple website and seen in Apple Stores.

He also went to absurd lengths to document rare Apple product prototypes:

Mr. Zufi met with collectors around the country, loading dusty collections of valuable prototypes into rental cars and photographing them, sometimes in makeshift studios in hotel rooms.

Zufi, who has never worked for Apple Inc, has since emptied the storage unit and sold most of the items he bought, though he still keeps “an enormous monitor in his garage” along with a dozen other items.

Zufi explains:

I wanted to create a repository where people who also love the company and its products could go and reminisce. I want people who are a bit younger who think Apple just makes things that start with “i” to know this company used to make clunky printers.

The Smyth sewn-bound Iconic is printed on the exquisite 105 lb. GoldEast matte paper.

The dust jacket is the 105 lb. art gloss material with film lamination while the endpapers are printed on 95 lb. white woodfree, plain white paper. Amazingly, the case materials used are “Slate Blue binding cloth (Classic Edition) and General Roll Leaf Lustrofoil ‘Silver S5’ (Special Edition).”

Check out the exquisite Special Edition, shipping in mid-October, in a video below.

The Special Edition comes with an external “custom form-fit book case with a design to celebrate the vintage computing retro form factor of the late ’70s and early ’80s”.

Zufi even created Ridgewood Publishing to self-publish Iconic.

You can order Iconic: The Classic Edition for $75.

The ultimate Special Edition masterpiece comes with a hefty price tag of $300, but something tells me the true Apple enthusiasts won’t think twice before ordering one of these.

I’m tempted as well.


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Review: Apple Watch Series 4 — Beautiful Design, Invisible Features

When people ask me what’s different about the new Apple Watch Series 4, my immediate answer is simply the design. There’s way more to Apple Watch Series 4 than its appearance, but the way it looks is arguably the one difference that anyone can appreciate.

The design isn’t so different that Series 4 feels like something different than the Apple Watch on your wrist though. It’s absolutely the biggest external change to Apple Watch since the original, but I’ve encountered a number of existing Apple Watch users who can’t immediately pinpoint what’s different.

I think that’s partly because the first three Apple Watches pulled off a great illusion: blending a thick black bezel with deep black elements using the OLED display. If you’re very familiar with the actual confines of the previous screen, the new rounded corner-to-corner display feels like a serious breakthrough.

Update 12/7: This post has been updated with links to the new ECG app and other heart rate features.

Series 3 or Series 4?

Apple Watch has quickly iterated with at least one major change and consistent speed improvements since the original. Series 1 addressed performance constraints, Series 2 debuted at the same time and added GPS for more precise outdoor fitness tracking, and Series 3 introduced LTE for always being connected without the iPhone.

In day-to-day usage, Apple Watch Series 4 doesn’t feel fundamentally different than Apple Watch Series 3. It’s hard to pinpoint something major that I can do with Series 4 that I couldn’t do with Series 3. The major difference for me is more about how it makes me feel when I see it. It’s just aesthetically more polished in so many ways.

With that in mind, Apple currently offers two generations of Apple Watch for new customers and upgraders: Series 3 and Series 4. Both versions come in two sizes with options for GPS-only or LTE, but only Series 4 is offered in stainless steel now.

I recommend Series 4 if you’re upgrading Apple Watches. It will feel new in ways that Series 3 won’t. If you’re buying your first Apple Watch and want to save money, you can get almost the same utility from Series 3.

Check out our Series 3 versus Series 4 comparison for more details.


Beautiful design

I’ve worn Apple Watch every day since the original and upgraded annually to get the most out of it. This paints my perspective in a way that is vastly different than if I was upgrading from the original, but we’ll have experience from that perspective soon too [Update: Apple Watch Series 4: A big leap for the Digital Crown]. I do think there’s value in an annual deep dive on what’s changed year-to-year though and how it affects the experience. For easy access to the timeline so far:

Apple Watch Series 4 includes two notable external changes to the way it looks: 38mm and 42mm sizes are replaced by 40mm and 44mm sizes, and stainless steel now has a gold option.


I’ve always worn a 42mm model Apple Watch. For Series 4, I’ve tried both the 40mm and 44mm versions. The smaller version only feels like a minor decrease in screen size while the overall casing feels absolutely miniature. 40mm feels dainty on my wrist just like the 38mm version did, yet it shows almost as much content as the 42mm version. That’s impressive.

Series 4 in the larger 44mm version feels like brand new territory for Apple Watch. The iconic honeycomb app grid is larger than ever which makes it easier to use, there’s just more screen so apps can show more content, and text is more legible without cranking up the font size.

When I wore 40mm, I was impressed that Apple Watch could fit that much screen on that size device. When I started wearing 44mm, it felt like a whole new kind of Apple Watch. I imagine this feeling is the same if you’ve always worn a 38mm version.

Once you use one of the new displays, the old screens feel absolutely dated. It’s similar to the difference between an iPhone X and an iPhone with top and bottom bezels. Apple has a marketing term, Retina, for its high-resolution displays. I think it needs a catchy term for its corner-to-corner screens too.

The change in thickness is less obvious to me, but it’s there. Series 4 is thinner than Series 2 and Series 3, but it’s not as thin as the original Apple Watch yet. It’s slightly less boxy, though, and that makes it feel fresh.

The back of Series 4 is also very attractive. You don’t see it when you’re wearing the watch, but it’s worth admiring. The upgraded heart rate sensor has been redesigned to look less technical and more balanced. The area around the heart rate sensor is ceramic and not aluminum nor steel — this is a clear upgrade on aluminum models especially. Apple says this helps radio waves pass through, but it also just looks great.

Gold stainless steel

Apple Watch and gold have a fun history. The original Apple Watch included the Edition collection with actual gold and prices ranging from $10,000 to $17,000. These were retired when Series 1 and Series 2 were introduced.

Apple later introduced gold and rose gold aluminum versions at normal prices (Series 3 combined gold and rose gold with a single finish that sits between the two shades). Stainless steel has always been limited to silver and space black — I’ve switched between both over the years — until now.

Like the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max, Apple Watch Series 3 includes a gold stainless steel option. Personally, I’ve never considered myself a “gold” person, but I really like this gold. It’s not yellow, it’s not pink, and it’s not in your face. It’s a really restrained gold.

Apple made a version of their existing Milanese Loop to match the new gold stainless steel finish on Series 4. The original gold Edition watches came with Sport bands and leather straps (and a few celebrities had special gold Link Bracelets), but there wasn’t even an option for a gold Milanese Loop yet.

This watch color and band combination seems to get a lot of attention — and not by being obnoxious. People notice it and frequently use the word “pretty” to describe it. That seems new for the Apple Watch.

People often asked about my Apple Watch during the first year when it was new and different. Now Apple Watch is commonly spotted in populated areas so that’s no longer the case. That didn’t change when I tested the 40mm space gray aluminum Series 4, but it did when I started wearing 44mm gold stainless steel with the new gold Milanese Loop.

I hope Apple eventually makes more bands for the gold stainless steel watch. It currently ships with either a stone Sport band or the gold Milanese Loop, but I’d love to see the traditional leather Classic Buckle revived with gold hardware.

In day-to-day usage, I prefer the black Sport band with the gold stainless steel Series 4. You have to buy the black Sport band separately for now, but I think this should be a standard combination. (Other Sport band colors can work, but they have silver pins that don’t match as well as black or gold pins.)

Small touches

Series 4 isn’t just a larger display and new gold finish. There are lots of external design differences.

The two microphone and air vent dots of past models is now a single microphone dot, relocated from the left side to the right. The speaker is now much louder with a larger opening on the left side (this is used for alerts, Siri, and calls, but Music and Podcasts still require Bluetooth audio). And the water eject tone introduced with Series 2 is deeper now with the speaker change.

The side button is used for toggling power, activating the emergency SOS mode, and launching Apple Pay and the app launching dock so the Apple Watch needs it. But it doesn’t have to look so button-y, especially since the Apple Watch set up tutorial tells you it’s there.

One small step back with this change is using the side button as a snooze button with Nightstand Mode and alarms. It still works, but it’s not quite as natural. I’ll take this tradeoff for the visual improvement though.

The Digital Crown replaces the red dot with a more subtle red ring on LTE models; GPS-only models have an even less noticeable black ring. It also features haptic feedback for the first time. This is turned on by default, but you can disable it for the previous experience.

In other areas, haptic feedback seems to be mapped to each tick mark on the Digital Crown, not the content on the watch screen. This disconnection is strange to me. It’s a neat trick, but I much prefer haptic feedback mapped to on-screen elements and used in subtle ways over arbitrarily firing off with each spin regardless of what’s being shown.

Watch faces


Infograph is an information dense watch face that shows up to eight complications around an analog clock.

Four center complications fit within circles larger than complications on other watch faces. The top center complication can even show text within the tick marks of the clock. You can also use a new Favorites complication to show favorited contacts from the Phone app on iPhone — sort of a throwback to the Friends circle mapped to the side button on the original Apple Watch software.

Other new center complications introduced on the Infograph face include air quality index, Earth, moon, solar, solar system, UV index, and wind speed.

The outer four complication spots introduce a new corner complication style that uses a gauge to show information like high, low, and current temperature, timer progress, and more. This complication style is a very clever way of showing more information in a tight space while still being legible.

New corner complication options from Apple include air quality index and UV index, new data points in the Weather app on watchOS 5.

I found that it’s easy to spend a lot of time tinkering with the Infograph face considering how many customization options it has. This is a good problem to have — especially as more apps update to work with the new watch face.

I especially like using the task manager Things on the top center complication so the next task can appear in text around the dial and the circle complication can be a progress ring. I’m using Carrot Weather (with all the snark turned off) to add a humidity gauge to one of the corner complications.

A lot of users just want to launch apps from complications, not see information, so one fix for the variety limitation could be fitting app icons in the center slots. This could apply to the next watch face too.

Infograph Modular

Apple Watch Series 4 introduces a new digital watch face called Infograph Modular. This features a digital clock for the time, an optional slot above that for the day and date, four circular complications, and a new large slot that lets apps show almost anything. Three circular complications sit below the large slot, one circular complication above it.

This is my new favorite Apple Watch face. I used to use Activity Digital primarily with the date, current temperature, and Workout complications around the Activity rings and digital clock.

Activity Digital shows seconds, not just hours and minutes, and Infograph Modular can’t do that yet. I wish it could. But I’ve otherwise created a better watch face for tracking my activity progress throughout the day.

I can see the current, high, and low temperature in one slot, my Activity rings in another, and view an updating chart of my activity progress with numbers on the same face that shows the day and date, launches the Workout app, and even shows me my task progress with Things.

Full Screen

Infograph and Infograph Modular are the only watch faces that are totally unique to the new Apple Watch, but several watch faces have versions exclusive to Series 4.

Fire and Water, Liquid Metal, and Vapor are all new to watchOS 5 in circular mode, but only Series 4 has the more sophisticated full screen option. This lets the elements move around the corners of the display and the tick marks for each hour of the analog clock.

Kaleidoscope also gains the full screen option, and Color gains full screen and circular modes with watchOS 5.1 (currently in beta). These full screen modes look great on the new corner-to-corner display, but they remove the option to use any complications.

Personally, I’ve been using the water-only version of Fire and Water in full screen mode after completing my Activity rings as a way to reward myself and unwind. These full screen faces are visually pleasing but completely opposite of information dense faces.

Legacy faces

It may be inaccurate to describe all other watch faces as legacy, but that’s what most of them feel like on Series 4 — especially the new 44mm size. Some are updated with rounded complications where text used to be vertical, others remove the background label in a subtle way, and some complication slots are unchanged.

The Siri watch face is simply larger which is nice for reading at a glance. Most other watch faces feel like they would have been designed more like Infograph and Infograph Modular if they were created today.

There are a few watch faces that do feel like they were made for the Series 4 that could fit into the full screen category though: Photos and Timelapse.

These faces used to reveal the thick bezel around the boxy watch face on older watches. Now they absolutely shine. I see Photos used as a watch face commonly in the wild so I think a lot of Series 4 users will enjoy it even more now.

Invisible features

So much of what I have to say about Apple Watch Series 4 is about how the watch itself looks and how watch faces respond to the new display because other major changes can’t be seen — at least yet.

The accelerometer and gyroscope have been upgraded which likely improves activity tracking, but not in a way that fixes something that was broken. Apple Watch Series 3 is already fantastic at this.

Fall detection

The upgrade does power newly added fall detection however. This feature intelligently detects when someone wearing Series 4 falls, presents an option to call emergency services or dismiss the alert, then automatically calls emergency services and notifies your emergency contact if you don’t respond within one minute of a detected fall.

Fall detection is turned off by default if you’re under 65. Apple says that’s because younger people often participate in activity that could be mistaken for a fall, like playing sports, but you can turn it on manually.

I frequently run with my Apple Watch and AirPods and nothing else. I stopped carrying my iPhone on runs when it gained LTE with Series 3. Fall detection and automatically alerting emergency services appeals to even me as a 27-year-old. The thought of stumbling during a run or even being clipped by a car in a hit-and-run is a real concern.

Apple warns that every fall cannot be detected, of course, but it’s a feature that has the potential to save lives.


Apple Watch Series 4 will introduce the ability to take an electrocardiogram with the new ECG app in a future software update, but it’s not a feature that’s available at launch. This feature uses the upgraded heart rate sensor and Digital Crown to work. Here’s what Apple says about the new ECG feature:

Like fall detection, the benefits of having a built-in ECG reader aren’t obvious in everyday use for a lot of users. But I’m certain Apple Watch Series 4 and the new ECG app will provide useful health information to customers who otherwise may go without crucial health data.

Update 12/7: The new ECG app and irregular heart rate detection features are now available in the United States for users 22 and older. The app is very easy to use and makes it possible to share results with your doctor using the Health app on the iPhone.


I’ll end with a collection of observations from testing Apple Watch Series 4 in no specific order:

Most of the functionality feels the same, but the enhanced Siri waveform that responds to audio input improves the user experience; Dictation still needs to be responsive

Series 4 is faster than Series 3, but the leap from older Apple Watches is much more dramatic

Some on-screen elements are truncated or even hidden behind the bezel on the 40mm version of Apple Watch Series 4 at launch, but not on the 44mm version (see the Heart app, Calendar corner complication on Infograph, and months with five weeks in Calendar app)

Apps that haven’t updated for Apple Watch Series 4 aren’t full screen yet; 44mm runs 42mm apps, and 40mm runs 38mm apps

No built-in sleep tracking, always-on display (even for the time), or camera, but the 44mm display is the first screen that feels suitable for a video call — view a portrait in the Photos app to experience

The packaging change is curious — will we see watches and bands sold in more combinations in the future?

Calendar’s ‘NO EVENTS’ placeholder text has to go — that’s a dealbreaker on Infograph for me (and it truncates as a corner complication on 40mm)

After a full year of being able to make phone calls on the Apple Watch without an iPhone nearby, you still can’t leave the Phone app during a call

I really want the six iPhone XR colors (black, white, red, blue, yellow, and coral) to replace space gray, silver, and gold aluminum finishes — white is technically still silver, but space gray is starting to look dated and matte black would be cool … and all those other colors

Apple Watch has become a lot of things for me.

It quantifies how much activity I need throughout the day to maintain a healthy lifestyle. It keeps me connected to friends and family even when I want to break my iPhone addiction and leave it behind. And it’s my workout partner with Siri, Apple Music, and Apple Podcasts streaming on LTE.

These were true of Apple Watch Series 3, and they’re just as true if not more with Apple Watch Series 4 — but the big reward this year is I absolutely love how the Apple Watch looks and feels. And I have no doubt the invisible features will prove their potential in time.

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This Creator Is Building An Entire Web3 Ecosystem Around Coffee And Literature

In 2023, NFTs no longer revolve around the simple dualities of art and money. Although it’s true that artists and collectors continue to lead the space, both making and losing millions on a regular basis, the nonfungible ecosystem has changed.

Birthed as a niche internet microcosm, the NFT market has since become a multi-billion-dollar industry. And this market has grown far beyond the constraints of an “NFT” blanket term. Within this industry now lives a wide variety of subsections that continue to gain prominence as the months go by.

More recently, we’ve witnessed a diverse range of content creators and owners finding new avenues through which to monetize their intellectual property (IP) in ways we’ve never seen before. One multifaceted artist, Metasebia Yoseph, is providing a shining example of how Web2 content can be reinvigorated as a dynamic Web3 endeavor by rewriting the history of her book, A Culture of Coffee, on the blockchain.

A digital version of A Culture of Coffee

A Culture of Coffee on the blockchain

In 2013, Ethiopian-American author Metasebia Yoseph set off on a journey to educate culture enthusiasts and coffee drinkers alike about the ritualistic and time-honored tradition behind the world’s favorite caffeinated beverage. Through her book A Culture of Coffee, she hoped to help readers rediscover the value of and the complex history behind the global coffee culture.

Nearly a decade later, Yoseph works in developing products and experiences at the intersection of art, design, culture, and technology. But while her personal and professional goals have changed, her deep love for coffee has stood the test of time. Now, with the major anniversary of her book on the horizon, she’s begun to reimagine what disseminating the rich history of coffee might look like in a new age.

And how do stories get told in a digitally-native, Web3-centric era? On the blockchain of course.

Yoseph’s journey is one of many within the literary ecosystem that has culminated with blockchain technology. Even recently we’ve seen writers aim to join the NFT space via digital merchandise, with prominent Web3 journalist Laura Shin kicking off a sort of digital book club powered by blockchain tech.

Nowadays, Yoseph is as much a part of the Web3 community as anyone, and as a writer looking to innovate in the space, it makes perfect sense for the 10-year anniversary edition of her book to find its way to the blockchain. But it isn’t only NFTs that we’re talking about, Yoseph is aiming to create an entire ecosystem surrounding both her book and coffee culture.

The roadmap for the Culture of Coffee Web3 project

To kick off this new endeavor, entitled Culture of Coffee, Yoseph intends to leverage blockchain tech to launch a crowdfunding campaign towards the end of May to help bring her vision to life. Alongside the initial crowdfund, she will also be releasing a $COFFEE token that will be gifted to early supporters. Once the wheels are turning, Yoseph will unveil an interactive book, token-enabled access to a virtual gallery featuring transmedia and 3D artifacts, in-person events and activations, and more in celebration of the special anniversary edition of A Culture of Coffee.

In preparation for the first stop on the path to Culture of Coffee, Yoseph launched a series of Twitter Spaces called #CoffeeSocial as well as a Discord server to unpack all things at the intersection of $COFFEE, culture, and crypto. Yet, while the information surrounding the multi-faceted project can at times feel dense, one thing has become clear: that for Yoseph, this latest endeavor is a labor of love and community above all else.

“The Web3 rise of micro and creator economies means that my vision for the project as an artful, dynamic, and community-owned crypto-artifact can be manifested to scale,” says Yoseph. “All of this, while compensating the collaborators and coffee enthusiasts invested in collecting and preserving coffee culture, while actively shaping its future.”

Power Bi Virtual Table

Power BI virtual table is my personal favorite DAX topic. They’re the key to unlocking the full power of DAX. Virtual tables are the only type of tables within Power BI that are fully dynamic, and there are problems that can only be solved by applying virtual table techniques within your measures. You can watch the full video of this tutorial at the bottom of this blog.

In this tutorial, I’m going to share my top 5 tips and tricks that I’ve accumulated over the years that really have helped me understand and debug what’s happening within Power Bi virtual tables.

The example I’m going to walk through today is from the Enterprise DNA forum, and it comes from a member named Dave C, who works in industrial safety. Dave had a series of safety scores and he wanted to normalize those so that the top score was 10, and then dynamically come up with the Nth in that list.

Initially, we thought of doing this through a simple RANKX measure, but we later realized that a lot of his normalized values have ties. For example, if you want the seventh item on the list, there’s not going to be a number seven in a RANKX. There’s no easy way to pull that out of a filter condition. So we decided on a TOPN-based measure so that it would always count down the nth number.

This is akin to when you’re pulling the seventh card from a deck, you count out seven cards, and then you flip over that stack of seven, and the card on the bottom is the one you want. We’re going to do the equivalent of that in a TOPN measure.

You can use DAX Studio or the Tabular Editor. In this example, I’m using the Tabular Editor 3 (TE3). It’s technically possible to do this using the Modeling – New Table tab, but that’s going to create physical tables within your data model. You’re going to have to manually flip between that and the editor and it’s just a slow and difficult way to do it.

When you see the dynamic way in which it can be done through an external tool, you’ll see the benefit.

So within the TE3, we create a new DAX query. We can take our initial measure and copy this over to our DAX query.

If you remember, DAX queries always start with EVALUATE. We’re going to get an error initially because DAX queries return tables. This was a measure with the last two variables that are scalars. What we can do here is change the return value, which is my next tip.

You can debug virtual tables in much the same way as you do with measures – piece by piece, by changing the return value. Let’s start with the first virtual table, the vEvalTable. We simply replace the RETURN value (Final) with our first variable (VAR). And you can see that the error goes away because the DAX query is now getting a table.

In the vEvalTable, we’re taking the original data, which are the safety scores, and we’re normalizing those and adding that Normalized Value column to the virtual table. We’ve got the Index, the Value of the Region, and the Normalized value. We can sort these values up or down and filter the values as well.

This is giving us exactly what we’d expected. It returns 50 rows, which is the full data set. That’s all going well, so let’s go down and explore the next table, which is the vTableTopN. In this table, we’re taking TOPN using the nth item slider value. In this example, we have that seventh value of the virtual table above (vEvalTable), and we’re taking that TOPN based on the normalized value in descending order.

So, when we change our RETURN function into that, it falls off and we don’t get anything. Let’s take a look at why because this is a really important concept for debugging and understanding virtual tables.

If we look at the formula, we have the Nth Item Slider Value as the main suspect here. Back to Power BI, we can see that this is basically just harvesting the number seven. Note that sliders exist within the context of a page.

And so, in this case, when we’re looking at debugging that table out of context, that selected value has no context around it. It doesn’t have anything in terms of being able to pull that number. We were getting a TOPN, but we don’t know what the N is in TOPN because that selected value is returning a blank.

How do we handle that? Let’s look at the selected value measure. Most of the time, we always pay attention to the first parameter in SELECTEDVALUE, but there’s a second parameter, which is an alternate. This brings us to my third tip.

What happened here is that it has been pulling the blank as the alternate. But what we want to do (for debugging purposes) is that we want to put a real value in here. So, we put the number 7 and save that.

Now we have some values. It’s returning seven rows, which is exactly what it should because of that TOPN value of seven.

Let’s continue down the line to the next virtual table, which is the vTableNthItem. We’ve got that stack of seven cards, and this table is basically flipping it over. We were in descending order in the previous table, and now we’re in ascending order.

If we take and copy this down to the RETURN section, we get the results. It’s interesting that it’s not returning one row. It’s returning three rows because these three are tied. That’s exactly the reason why we use TOPN rather than RANKX, in this case.

Now let’s go to Result. If we copy the VAR Result down to the RETURN section, this gets to my fourth tip.

Within the formula, we’re taking the max (MAXX) of that vTableNthItem and we’re returning the normalized value. This could be MAX, it could be MIN, it could be AVERAGE. It’s just some aggregator that’s returning that one value in that table. And so, if we copy this down, it’s going to give us an error because this is now a scalar.

But this is my fourth tip, which is in the context of debugging. What you can do is just add the curly brackets. By doing so, it turns that scalar into a table.

And then, what we’ve got here is just a final error check, which is if it turns out that the evaluation table is smaller than the number of rows, it will return insufficient data. But we know in this case that our data set is big enough. However, we can just test that by typing in Final. Again, because that’s a scaler, we also need the curly brackets, and we get the same value here.

We’ve delved in and debugged this virtual table, and we’ve used the alternate value in the SELECTEDVALUE to keep it from falling over out of context. Now I just want to show you one additional tip that I found really useful.

In the context of doing your debugging, you’re going to want to see in Power BI what that table looks like. The general rule is that a measure can only return a scalar, not a table. But, there’s one cheat that I’m going to show you that allows it to quasi return a table.

Let’s take a look at this measure, which is Visualized Virtual Table, and we’ve got here all the virtual tables that we had initially. For example, we want to display, let’s say on the front report page, the vTableTopN.

You can use this CONCATENATEX function. You can actually take that virtual table name (vTableTopN) and take the values in that table and concatenate them. You can create something that basically looks like a virtual table.

If we take this measure, we need to go back to Power BI and drop this into a card measure. Typically, the table gives an error, but through CONCATENATEX, it turned that table into a scaler. You can see that it’s fairly primitive, but it’s returning exactly what we expect and it’s doing so in a dynamic way.

It is a way to push a table into a measure and show that in your report. It’s a really helpful debugging trick. It will provide a good format in a card value that you can use in a report.

Hopefully, this tutorial gives you some food for thought in terms of working with a Power BI virtual table. These are some additional tips and tricks for understanding what’s going on within your virtual tables. I hope you found that helpful.

Visit our website for more Power BI tutorials and check out the links below for more related content.

All the best!


Gate Production And Industrial Engineering Syllabus

GATE Production and Industrial Engineering Syllabus

Subject Code: PI Course Structure

Sections/Units Topics

Section A Engineering Mathematics

Unit 1 Linear Algebra

Unit 2 Calculus

Unit 3 Differential Equations

Unit 4 Complex Variables

Unit 5 Probability and Statistics

Unit 6 Numerical Methods

Section B General Engineering

Unit 1 Engineering Materials

Unit 2 Applied Mechanics

Unit 3 Theory of Machines and Design

Unit 4 Thermal and FluidsEngineering

Section C Manufacturing Processes I

Unit 1 Casting

Unit 2 Metal Forming

Unit 3 Joining of materials

Unit 4 Powder processing

Unit 5 Polymers and Composites

Section D Manufacturing Processes II

Unit 1 Machine Tools and Machining

Unit 2 Non-traditional Manufacturing

Unit 3 Computer Integrated Manufacturing

Section E Quality and Reliability

Unit 1 Metrology and Inspection

Unit 2 Quality management

Unit 3 Reliability and Maintenance

Section F Industrial Engineering

Unit 1 Industrial Engineering

Unit 2 Industrial Engineering

Unit 3 Facility Design

Section G Operations research and Operations management

Unit 1 Operation Research

Unit 2 Engineering Economy and Costing

Unit 3 Production control

Unit 4 Project management

Course Syllabus

Section A: Engineering Mathematics

Unit 1: Linear Algebra

Matrix algebra

Systems of linear equations

Eigen values and Eigen vectors

Unit 2: Calculus

Functions of single variable, Limit, continuity and differentiability

Mean value theorems

Evaluation of definite and improper integrals

Partial derivatives

Total derivative

Maxima and minima


Divergence and Curl

Vector identities

Directional derivatives

Line, Surface and Volume integrals

Stokes, Gauss and Green’s theorems

Unit 3: Differential Equations

First order equations (linear and nonlinear)

Higher order linear differential equations with constant coefficients

Cauchy’s and Euler’s equations

Initial and boundary value problems

Laplace transforms

Solutions of one dimensional heat and wave equations and Laplace equation

Unit 4: Complex variables

Analytic functions

Cauchy’s integral theorem

Taylor series

Unit 5: Probability and Statistics

Definitions of probability and sampling theorems,

Conditional probability, Mean, median, mode and standard deviation

Random variables, Poisson, Normal and Binomial distributions

Unit 6: Numerical Methods

Numerical solutions of linear and non-linear algebraic equations Integration by trapezoidal and Simpson’s rule

Single and multi-step methods for differential equations

Section B: General Engineering

Unit 1: Engineering Materials

Structure and properties correlation

Engineering materials (metals, ceramics, polymers and composites) – properties and applications

Stress strain behavior of metals and alloys

Iron-carbon phase diagram, heat treatment of metals and alloys, its influence on mechanical properties

Unit 2: Applied Mechanics

Engineering mechanics −

Equivalent force systems

Free body concepts

Equations of equilibrium


Strength of materials −

Stress, strain and their relationship

Failure theories, Mohr’s circle(stress), deflection of beams, bending and shear stress

Euler’s theory of columns

Unit 3: Theory of Machines and Design

Analysis of planar mechanisms, cams and followers

Governors and fly wheels

Design of bolted, riveted and welded joints

Interference/shrink fit joints

Design of shafts, keys, spur gears, belt drives, brakes and clutches

Pressure vessels

Unit 4: Thermal and Fluids Engineering

Fluid mechanics −

Fluid statics

Bernoulli’s equation

Flow through pipes

Equations of continuity and momentum

Capillary action

Contact angle and wetting

Thermodynamics −

Zeroth, first and second laws of thermodynamics

Thermodynamic system and processes

Calculation of work and heat for systems and control volumes

Air standard cycles

Heat transfer −

Basic applications of conduction

Convection and radiation

Section C: Manufacturing Processes I

Unit 1: Casting

Types of casting processes and applications

Patterns – types and materials


Moulds and cores – materials, making, and testing

Casting techniques of cast iron, steels and nonferrous metals and alloys

Analysis of solidification and microstructure development

Design of gating and riser

Origin of defects

Unit 2: Metal Forming

Stress-strain relations in elastic and plastic deformation; concept of flow stress; hot and cold working – forging, rolling, extrusion and wire drawing; sheet metal working processes – blanking, bending and deep drawing; ideal work and slab analysis; origin of metal working defects.

Unit 3: Joining of materials

Principles of fusion welding processes (manual metal arc, MIG, TIG, plasma arc, submerged arc welding processes)–different heat sources (flame, arc, resistive, laser, electron beam), and heat transfer and associated losses, flux application, feeding of filler rod; Principles of solid state welding processes (friction, explosive welding, ultrasonic welding processes); Principles of adhesive, brazing and soldering processes; Origins of welding defects.

Unit 4: Powder processing

Production of metal/ceramic powders

Compaction and sintering of metals and ceramic powders

Unit 5: Polymers and Composites

Plastic processing −

Injection, compression and blow molding

Extrusion, calendaring and thermoforming

Molding of composites

Section D: Manufacturing Processes II

Unit 1: Machine Tools and Machining

Basic machine tools like centre lathe, milling machine, and drilling machine – construction and kinematics

Machining processes −


Taper turning

Thread cutting




Gear cutting

thread production


Geometry of single point cutting tools, chip formation, cutting forces, specific cutting energy and power requirements, merchant’s analysis

Basis of selection of machining parameters

Tool materials, tool wear and tool life, economics of machining, thermal aspects of machining, cutting fluids, machinability

Jigs and fixtures – principles, applications, and design

Unit 2: Non-traditional Manufacturing

Principles, applications, effect of process parameters on MRR and product quality of non-traditional machining processes – USM, AJM, WJM, AWJM, EDM and Wire cut EDM, LBM, EBM, PAM, CHM, ECM

Unit 3: Computer Integrated Manufacturing

Basic concepts of CAD – geometric modeling

CAM – CNC and robotics – configurations

Drives and controls

Group Technology and its applications – CAPP

Cellular manufacturing and FMS

Section E: Quality and Reliability

Unit 1: Metrology and Inspection

Limits, fits, and tolerances, gauge design, interchangeability, selective assembly

Linear, angular, and form measurements (straightness, squareness, flatness, roundness, and cylindricity) by mechanical and optical methods

Surface finish measurement by contact and non-contact methods

Tolerance analysis in manufacturing and assembly

Unit 2: Quality management

Quality – concept and costs

Quality assurance

Statistical quality control, acceptance sampling, zero defects, six sigma

Total quality management

ISO 9000

Unit 3: Reliability and Maintenance

Reliability, availability and maintainability

Distribution of failure and repair times

Determination of MTBF and MTTR

Reliability models

Determination of system reliability

Preventive maintenance and replacement

Section F: Industrial Engineering

Unit 1: Product Design and Development

Principles of good product design, tolerance design; quality and cost considerations; product life cycle; standardization, simplification, diversification, value engineering and analysis, concurrent engineering; comparison of production alternatives.

Unit 2: Work System Design

Taylor’s scientific management, Gilbreths’s contributions

Productivity – concepts and measurements

Method study, micro-motion study, principles of motion economy

Work measurement −

Time study

Work sampling

Standard data



Job evaluation, merit rating, incentive schemes, and wage administration

Unit 3: Facility Design

Facility location factors and evaluation of alternate locations

Types of plant layout and their evaluation

Computer aided layout design techniques

Assembly line balancing

Materials handling systems

Section G: Operations research and Operations management

Unit 1: Operation Research

Linear programming −

Problem formulation

Simplex method

Duality and sensitivity analysis

Transportation and assignment models

Network flow models, constrained optimization and Lagrange multipliers

Markovian queuing models

Dynamic programming

Simulation – manufacturing applications

Unit 2: Engineering Economy and Costing

Elementary cost accounting and methods of depreciation

Break-even analysis, techniques for evaluation of capital investments, financial statements, time-cost trade-off, resource leveling

Unit 3: Production Control

Forecasting techniques −

Causal and time series models

Moving average

Exponential smoothing



Aggregate production planning

Master production scheduling


Routing, scheduling and priority dispatching

Push and pull production systems, concept of JIT manufacturing system

Logistics, distribution, and supply chain management

Inventory −




Deterministic inventory models

Quantity discount

Perpetual and periodic inventory control systems

Unit 4: Project management




Standstand Review: A Beautiful, Easy

Are you a standing desk owner who wants to do more standing when working away from home or the office? Maybe you don’t own a standing desk but are looking for an affordable standing desk that can be used at home and away from home. No matter your needs, StandStand is a viable option that will deliver on style and functionality.

Whether you’re looking for a standing desk for your tablet, laptop, or desktop computer, StandStand has you covered. In this review, though, we’re going to look at the most portable option available: the original StandStand.

Note: the company’s name is StandStand, and the model name of the portable standing desk in this review is also StandStand.

What Is StandStand?

StandStand is a very clever portable and lightweight standing desk that was “designed from the ground up with the user in mind.” When not in use StandStand looks like random pieces of wood, but once put together, it’s a strong, stable, and elegant surface for using a laptop, tablet, or anything else you’d like – at a comfortable standing level.

Not only is StandStand convenient, but it’s also ergonomic and sustainable. It’s made in the USA with sustainable birch and bamboo. Just as people come in different heights, so does StandStand. There are four different sizes to accommodate four height ranges:

The 9″ model is for those who are 5’5″ and under.

The 12″ model is for those who are 5’5″ to 5’11”.

The 14″ model is for those who are 5’11” to 6’2″.

The 16″ model is for those who are 6’2″ and over.

If you want to see StandStand in use, the below video will show you how cool you’ll look in public with your handy portable standing desk!

What’s in the Box

StandStand comes in three pieces that are neatly held together by the four pegs (two on each side) on the center piece. There is also a green velcro piece wrapped around all three handles to ensure that it doesn’t come apart while in transit.

You also get four extra “bumpons” (aka rubber feet) in case you lose one. They’re pretty small and come taped to the one-page instructional manual inside the box.

Putting It Together

StandStand is super-easy to put together and should take you no more than a minute. If it takes longer, then you’re overthinking it. In two steps it literally fits together like a puzzle. An illustration is also provided inside the box in case you are having a bit of trouble with it. (It’s OK, no judgment here.)

Step 1

The two smaller pieces interlock to make the base of the portable standing desk. You’ll need to unstack them, turn them on their side, and hold them so that the slots are facing away from you.

You’ll notice that one of the pieces has a thinner edge (where the slots are) compared to the other. This thinner side goes into and then slides down (or up depending on how you’re holding them) to connect with the piece with the thicker edge.

If this all seems confusing to you, StandStand has a short video showing you how it’s done.

Step 2

All that’s left is to sit the larger surface piece on top. As you can see in the picture above, there are two rectangular parts sticking up on top of the base. Likewise, the surface piece has two rectangular slots that fit snuggly with them.

On the bottom of the base, you’ll also notice that there are four bumpons/rubber feet to keep the portable standing desk from sliding around on any surface. They really do make a world of a difference.

Personal Experience

I found that StandStand is just as great for at-home use as it is for away-from-home use. You can easily use this on a dining room table or even a desk (depending on the height). It’s not that great with counters, though, since those are going to make it too high for comfort.

I am only 5’2″ so I received the 9″ model, and I must say, it’s the perfect height for me. I had no issue using StandStand on three different surface levels.

I don’t have a working laptop, but I do have a tablet that I use regularly. The case I use has a built-in stand, and it works great on StandStand. However, if I wanted to connect a Bluetooth keyboard to it, there’s no room for that with my current case. This is the only downside I see; I’d have to switch out my case and use a smaller stand in order to use a keyboard with it.

Wrapping Things Up

StandStand doesn’t just come in this minimalist bamboo model either. If you want to be able to use a mouse with your laptop, there’s the “Mouse” and “Mouse de luxe” models. There’s even a “Grand” model that you can use on a desktop; there’s enough room for a monitor and full keyboard.

As someone who works primarily on my computer, I try to stand as much as I can so I’m not just sitting all day long. StandStand makes it even easier to do that since I can move around the house with my tablet. Better yet, I can do so when I’m traveling or want to work away from home.

If you want to do more standing in your life no matter where you are, StandStand is the perfect portable standing desk for the job.


Charnita Fance

Charnita has been a Freelance Writer & Professional Blogger since 2008. As an early adopter she loves trying out new apps and services. As a Windows, Mac, Linux and iOS user, she has a great love for bleeding edge technology. You can connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and LinkedIn.

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