Well, technically that should read “macOS and Tesla PT.3” because it’s been a while since I last wrote about this and times change.

For one thing, I used to have a Model S, and while that was a wonderful thing it had certain downsides; notably the woeful deficiencies in places to put things, and by things I mean cups. Yes, I got rid of my electric dream machine because it had too few cupholders and I moved to Santa Barbara from Washington State because of all the rain. Imagine a shallow and petty reason to make ruinously expensive life decisions, and rest assured that when you’re looking for some sap to make those dreams come true then I’m the man for the job.

I replaced the Model S with a Model 3, which has lots of cupholders and many other places to put things besides, and is a little shorter and narrower and can be parked by a human being without the need of tugboats or the kind of steely-eyed determination you expect from the sort of people who drive massive tankers through the Panama Canal every day, effortlessly moving between locks while leaving a credit card’s worth of space between the paint job and the concrete walls. I could rave about this car all day, but I’ll wrap this bit up quick by telling you that I bought it from a nice young man who used words like “bro” and “sweet” and “nodoubtnodoubt” and that driving the car is like driving a bicep. It’s solid and planted and capable-feeling and you drive around all day doing the things one does in cars when one is an enormous white man heading into middle age (being mildly concerned by the passage of time and the nature of mortality, wondering what you’re going to make for dinner, whether the amount of hair you pulled out of the shower means you should call a plumber or start worrying about whether you’re developing male pattern baldness). And then, like an unthinking fool, you mash the accelerator and start gibbering and screaming like a frightened ape in a lightning storm.

The storage bins between the seats are TARDIS-like and contain more space than they reasonably should. You merely touch them and then they open, and then you touch them again to close them. If you try and close them too hard then they bounce helpfully open again; repeat this process too often and the car bongs at you discretely and puts a notification up on the screen to the effect that You’re Closing The Door Too Hard, and also Please Stop That. Chastened, you learn your lesson.

It does everything better than the Model S except for one thing; the old way of connecting your computer to your car was lovely and only moderately impossible, and the new way of doing things is a headache.

At some point Tesla decided that OAuth was better than just sending your username and password in cleartext over the internet, which is generally a bad idea and more particularly one when said username and password allows the person who has it to unlock your car, get in, and drive it away without comment. Switching to the new way of doing things has managed to break the old teslams solution pretty comprehensively, and the replacement for it – teslajs – fails spectacularly to do anything except send me harsh notes to the effect that it can’t install things that it has in fact installed, and then compounds that by utterly failing to do anything useful whatsoever.

So instead, I’ve been tinkering around with Nikola. It’s a prebuilt binary that allows you to do most of the stuff you used to be able to do with the old teslams commands but is now all nicely wrapped up in a convenient package that doesn’t make you want to pull your hair out in chunks and thus exacerbate the kinds cranial-related problems you think about while driving.

As of right now teslajs doesn’t work, but despite how lovely Nikola is I rather miss having shell commands I can throw into the Terminal to quickly pull up data about my car. Hopefully I’ll have a little time down the road to bang my head about this. Who knows, maybe there’ll be a fourth update in a year or two…