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12 Mar

iOS 7.1 included CarPlay! Now I can use my iPhone hands-free in my car! As long as it’s one of “select” cars from 2014. It is not.

CarPlay is Apple’s plan for incorporating their software into vehicles, so the big question is whether this is going to be great and work or whether it’s going to be like iTunes on the Motorola ROKR was Apple’s plan for incorporating their software into cell phones. We all know that sucked so massively that it led to Apple taking it all back and making the iPhone instead in a great (and entirely typical of Apple) show of “Fine, we’ll do it ourselves.”

So will Apple eventually design their own iVehicle? I’d love to see it.

Probably won’t though, if only because Tesla is already doing exactly what Apple would do if they were going to manufacture cars.

Of course Apple could buy Tesla…



26 May

I did this a few times, getting more or less the same result, give or take 15%.  One of the times I got to read a bit from The Wizard of Oz, which I was thinking it’s about time to reread anyway (once I finish with Wicked).  So that was neat.

ereader test
Source: Staples eReader Department


18 Jun

So E3 (Electronic Entertainment Expo) for 2010 happened.  I wasn’t there.  But Nintendo announced (again) the 3DS which is another version of the Game Boy but with two screens and one of them is 3D* and doesn’t require glasses.  How does that work anyway?  How soon will laptops and iPads be in 3D?  Does it mean we’re getting closer to this?   (hint: it doesn’t)

SW HologramAnyway, the important news isn’t about the new revolution in 3D and motion-controlled (controller-less?) video gaming, the important news is this:

*Actually, like all the 3D movies that are out these days it’s actually stereoscopic 2D.  We haven’t invented actual 3D yet.

Thoughts on the iPad

2 Feb

First of all, what an awful name. Of all the rumored and possible names for this thing… iPad? Seriously? (My favorite name was “Canvas” but that doesn’t fit what the device turned out to be.)

Second of all, initially it’s underwhelming, because it seems to just be a big iPodTouch. I have an iPodTouch. It’s an amazing thing. A bigger one would also be an amazing thing, and I can easily imagine that browsing the internet by physically interacting with it is much more enjoyable than using a keyboard and mouse. But the tablet seems like just a bigger iPodTouch.

When Steve Jobs introduced the tablet he positioned it as a third category of product in between the Laptop and the iPhone. I think that’s disingenuous. The iPad is clearly meant to be a replacement for a laptop and not just a larger iPodTouch. In the future, it will be. Get a MacBook now while Apple still makes them. The iPad is the “laptop” of the future. Soon almost nobody will use laptops anymore because they will have iPads, or iPad-like devices. It can run programs as powerful and sophisticated as the iWork applications (basically Apple’s version of Microsoft Office), something that my iPodTouch certainly cannot. That means it’s as powerful already as most people need a laptop to be.

I can hear the screams of protest. “It doesn’t print!” “It doesn’t have a keyboard!” “It doesn’t have a camera!” “It doesn’t have a disc drive!” and so it can’t possibly replace a laptop. But I think that it can and it will. Maybe not this initial version, but it will improve, and tablet sales will soon outnumber laptop sales. Why?

Because it does the things that most people use their laptops for, and it does them better (and cheaper). Most people use laptops for email, for browsing the internet, and for… well, that’s basically it. Maybe there’s word processing. Maybe there’s video watching. Maybe there’s digital photo sorting and editing. The iPad does all of these things and aside from the word processing it seems likely that it does all of these things better than a laptop. Combine it with the keyboard dock (or a bluetooth keyboard) though, and it’s just as good as a laptop on your desk for word processing, but when you want to travel you only have to take the screen with you and not the entire bulky and heavy laptop. It’s better for sharing photos and giving presentations. It’s better for carrying around with you when traveling. It’s better for reading.

For people who get confused when Finder is the front app but a Word window is taking up the whole screen (I think that’s most computer users), the iPad is easier to use. Touch what you want, and you get it. The “computer” is mostly hidden. The “middle-man” mouse and keyboard is gone. You just physically interact with what you want. For most people, especially people that don’t really know or understand how to use computers, that’s far easier than using a computer via a mouse/trackpad and keyboard can ever be.

The fact that the computer is mostly hidden, though, is why it can’t completely replace the laptop. Yet. There are a few people out there, like me, who do things with their laptop that the iPad can’t do (like edit video) so for us it doesn’t replace the laptop. But we’re the minority of computer users. The iPad is the laptop of the future for the rest of you. I guess that means we’ll have to get used to the name.

Pages note and Yoda’s mind

18 Feb

This new full screen mode in Pages ‘9 is great (and pretty). It makes me want to write even though I have nothing to actually work on in Pages. (It’s too bad the screenplay template in Pages is actually a terrible hindrance when writing a screenplay. I’d love it if Celtx implemented a full screen mode.) How long has it been since a word processing application actually made writing exciting?

It occurs to me today that Yoda gives anger a raw deal. Anger leads to hate, he says. Hate leads to suffering. Well, sure, it can. But anger also leads to power.

Power leads to getting shit done.

I’m just saying that the little green bouncy muppet dude with the cane might have been a bit close-minded.

Subject Does Not Apply

16 Oct

Rhea says if she sees Indiana Jones when she’s out today she’ll bring him home.

Trust Apple to make their “old” laptops look chintzy and poorly designed in comparison to their new ones. I was figuring on getting an “old” one now that they’ll be cheaper too…

Oh, for those that don’t yet know and want to follow/stalk/devotedly keep up with me in yet another internet way, I’m on twitter with the same name as here and AIM.

The iPhone-man Cometh

14 Jun

You’ve probably heard that Apple is releasing the iPhone at the end of this month. If you haven’t heard, how’s life under that rock going? You may or may not, though, have seen these commercials for it. One interesting thing about these commercials that I can’t really think of any other commercials for any other products doing is that they show only one thing: the product being used. That’s it. There’s nothing else. No slogan, no humerous anecdote, no sex, no violence, no “special offers” or deals, no nudity, just the iPhone being used. They simply say “this is the product, this is how it does what it does” and that’s it. They have enough confidence in their product that they let it speak for itself. Almost like it’s just an honest ad, and not propaganda. Almost. (As opposed to those other commercials from Apple…)

In any case, the iPhone looks damn cool, and if it had enough storage for all of my music, had already been out “in the wild” for a long enough to be tested and improved, had useful battery life, and was cheaper (or I were richer) I would totally buy one. Totally.