Category Archives: Geek

Video Links

Since I do occasionally post things to YouTube and my own personal iWeb blog I decided to add the RSS feeds to the side area of this blog here. So enjoy in good health and maybe with the new year I will add some more fun videos.

Mac Media Event Afterthoughts

Well what can I say… I was wrong on a bunch of stuff. But not completely.

The 11 and 13 inch MacBook Airs didn’t kill the MacBook line. But they are going too. Most folks are already predicting huge sales os the new machines and Steve JObs on stage even said this is Apple’s vision of the way Laptops are going. The fact that they don’t come with 4 GB of ram standard is kind of silly but ah well.

They finally brought back the timeline editing in iLife 11. That is about the only reason I would consider upgrading to it. However I will have to wait and see if they ever release the new version of Final Cut which is supposed to be “simpler.”

Other then that it was rather a disappointing event. It seemed more like a Beta event in the fact that everything they announced was either have finished, not very well thought out, or a this will be better later on. Of course since this is Apple I’m sure they will sell boat loads of new laptops and everyone will be very excited and speculative for the next 10 months or so.

Apple Media event Oct 20th Predictions

Apple will kill the Macbook line and drop the MacBook Air in both 11 and 13 inch models in its place. This is to further cement the place of people moving away from traditional notebooks and into either iPads or the higher margin MacBook Pros.

iLIfe 11 ( preferably int he new 64 bit variety ) or whatever they call the next version will only have one significant change and that should be int he iWeb MObile me integration and publishing. Otherwise the big news will be iLife for iOS which will include some versions of all the iLife Apps for the iOS. This isn’t so much of new apps as it is renaming the apps on the current platform and adding some small features. For example

Photos – iPhoto – and and some edits like one touch effects, crop, redeye remove, and social network integration sharing.
iPod – iTunes – merges the store and the media playing app into one, similar to iBooks.
Voice Memo – Garageband – adds line in recording, podcast quick session recording, still does memos, and again social network integration publishing.
iMovie – is already there and as a reminder iMovie was the first iLife App as well and nobody thought it was all that cool as well, at least not until YouTube came around.
iWeb – I would really like to see Apple push forward with Ping and make it a more robust platform for all of your iLife sharing needs, and make iWeb into a Ping platform app.

Mac OSX 10.7 Lion – I would really like to see them integrate the iPad as a full multi touch controller interface for the OS. Not really a needed feature but more of a hey this is cool and it’s where we are going, without having to give up too much in terms of the familiar OS and how it functions. I would really like to see some more in terms of customization options, like themes and everything that Tinkertool does. This one is a bit tough because everything is so focused on iOS right now and no one has any real major complaints about how Snow Leopard is working. There are always bugs to be worked out but feature wise it seems to be just fine.

I would also really like to see Apple make a push into the “cloud computing” area that wasn’t a half assed effort. Believe me, after working for Google for awhile I can tell you Apple doesn’t have a clue about the “cloud” as it were and really needs to get the ball rolling on this. These kind of platforms take a long time to get right and lets face it, so far nothing Apple has done has been a success in this area. iWork.com is still a beta of which I know of no one who uses it. MobileMe is alright but has never sold really well, never seems to do everything you want it to do, and is marketed so poorly that most Apple Store employees don’t even know how to describe it as anything other then cool email and online storage. And of course they just introduced Ping, the social music network that is off to a rather shaky start. It’s almost as though Steve Jobs said, ‘Oh I don’t care about this Facebook thing, it is useless” and since then no one has bothered to tell him about the emerging market. More realistically though Apple has always been a hardware company that happens to come with great software. Other then iTunes they really don’t have a clue about services. Well maybe with the continuing success with the iOS App Store, they really won’t need to. After all they can let the rest of the world do all the hard work developing and they can still make boatloads off selling cool hardware.

The problem with this is that eventually other manufacturers will start selling decent hardware and cheaper most likely running on Windows or Android. Apple really does have the best mindset for making great customer experiences which is why they could dominate this market. More importantly, they can bring the Apple level of quality associated with their other software and make a platform that people don’t complain about every time it changes something. More often then not when Apple does change something most people embrace it whole heartedly.

So that about wraps that up and we shall see how I do.

Apple Media Event Predictions

So I know I’m kind of an Apple guy but hey, speculation is fun.

In a post just a bit ago I described how I though Apple would make the Apply TV just an App for the iOS and pair it with a new specialized docking station.  I’m sticking by this. I’m not really sure when they would do it but it still makes the most sense to me. It occurs to me this would also be a great way to showcase developing the iOS devices into other functions with the use of the dock connector and the appropriate programs

Now on to the wild guesses.

Apple will kill the entire iPod line as it stands. Instead the iPod Touch will now be known as simply the iPod. The new device with the small little touch screen will be a whole new class of device called the iPod Music. It will effectively combine the Shuffle and the Nano and retail for probably 79 dollars and of course come in 5 fruity colors.

Yes the new iPods ( ie the iPod touches ) will have retina displays and cameras and do facetime but only on the higher two models. The cheaper model will be as it is and drop to 149. Therefore making the higher end models with camera 249 and 349 respectively.

I would like to see them further this new branding by getting rid of the iPod App on the iOS and combining it with the iTunes Store App, and simply calling it iTunes for iOS. This makes sense because the iBooks app is both reader and store together so why not have the iTunes app be like it’s desktop counterpart and have iTunes both play and buy music and movies.

The Social iTunes cloud thingy. Well I’m not to sure on this one. Yes Apple obviously will do cloud streaming of content you bought to whatever device you want, for a price that is. I think it is interesting how we would come full circle of Apple basically doing what Microsoft has done in the past with the Zune Subscription pass and then pay to own it on top of it. But this is not a new concept. I think the only differences would be that you can use your preexisting library of media. I would really like to see apple buy Shazaam and incorporate that into iTunes for iOS as well but thats just wishful thinking.

What I would want/ like to see is if Apple is going to make a push into the social scene then let them start it on the Mac first. Rebrand Mobile me as just me and let the basic service be free. You can charge for premium features for more space, no ads, and what not. But I think a real tight integration with the iLife Suite. I mean if Apple is going to distinguish itself in terms of the social network space do it by really making yourself a content publisher.  Then of course have publishing to you ‘Me” account direct from your iOS device and all is well.

So that about covers it for now and next weeks predictions.

Recap – New iPods, new Apple TV App plus special dock, Streaming cloud iTunes with a subscription price.

Wishful thinking – new social network based off publishing content to your free “Me” account

Oh and of course the iPad will finally get iOS 4

Which means the new lineup will be the cheap stripped down iPod Music, then simply the iPod, the iPhone and the iPad.

Apple’s Magic Trackpad

So it seems a lot of the tech world is all uppity because Apple releases a desktop track pad and they are saying it is the End of the Mac OS as we know it. Well I believe they are half right as always. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Apple is an evolutionary company. They learned a long time ago to think way ahead and then take the baby steps to get there and wait for the consumers to catch up.

Apple will incorporate touch into Mac OS X eventually. But it will probably not be in the way most people think. Touching a desktop display never makes any sense because users arms get tired and looking at smudgy displays drives a lot of people nuts. Just look at the iPad and iPhone users. Almost everyone automatically wipes down the display after every other use.

If however you add a secondary display that is meant to be touched then it works perfectly. You get to keep all the added benefit of a huge clear display for viewing what you are working on and then use a multi touch trackpad to get more functionality. Lets look at my idea of where this is heading in terms of logical evolution.

1. Add multi buttons to mouse – Most PC users have appreciated this for decades and Apple finally dived in a few years ago.

2. Add a touch panel to top of mouse. – starts to mimic some of the ideas of the track pad but still gives users that mouse around feeling.

3. Add trackpad option. – Gives users the option of using a trackpad that functions the same as the one on their laptop.

Now on to future stuff

4. Make the trackpad standard for all shipping computers.

5. Attach trackpap to keyboard to make it a single device.

5.5 Make iPad app that can act like trackpad and do the same as below.

6. Make trackpad a display like iphone – can be used to display widgets and is programmable with infinite number of functions. Is demonstrated but iLife apps that replace keyboard with sliders, knobs, buttons etc. Is also opened up to developers to do with as they please.

7. replace keyboard and trackpad with larger display track pad that doubles as keyboard and trackpad when needed.

Etc etc

You see where this is going.

Also on a related predictive note. I don’t think Apple will replace the Apple TV. I think Apple is going to make the Apple TV an App for the iPhone and iPad. It will require the iPhone 4 or iPad and also a special dock that has etherent, remote, and hdmi output. to the Big screen TV in your living room. But it will allow these device to act as what is now the Apple TV hardware. And probably the App will only work when docked in the special dock which will be about 60 to 90 dollars. But this way you can use the Ethernet in the dock or the devices built in wifi to stream files from iTunes directly, or your home based network. And then immediately if you need to get up and go just take your portable device with you and continue where you left off.

Think about it. If Apple really wanted to make a massive push into the TV market why not just convert the already massive market you have. It makes consumers feel as though they get more out of the device they already have without having to but a whole separate device. And it would require little to no training because the user interface would be similar to the current iTunes and Apple TV interfaces already.

Anyways those are my two predictions for future Apple products.

How to shop

Okay so here’s the deal. We sold an old 19 inch LCD tv, and a bunch of other crap at a garage sale. We then used the money to buy a new 26 inch high def LCD and a copy of battlestar galactica the plan on DVD and still have enough cash left over to buy dinner.

So checklist

Upgraded tv
Triple reward points nets us a free $15 gift certificate
Got rid of crap
More space in garage
And free dinner

I may not do a lot in life but I do shop well

Donuts never cost this much before…

So last month I mentioned I went to go get donuts and ended up buying a new iPhone 3GS for the mrs and me. Well this past weekend I went to go get donuts and we decided to buy a new car. Although I did save 2 dollars at the donut shop because I bought a dozen so I guess it all evens out in the end.

We will miss the old truck. I’ll miss it’s really cool old school Apple logo sticker. (The rainbow one) I’ll miss the Stella causing mildew smell. I won’t really miss helping people haul all their crap in it. I will miss having bunches of hot chicks riding in my bed.  So 92,000 miles, and 9 years later we bid fond farewell…

… To the Cash for Clunkers program which went towards a 2009 Nissan Versa. It’s a peppy little car but more importantly; tax, title, and doc went out the door for about six grand. I even installed the new stereo, amp, and subs all by myself  since my brother Ed taught me how. And he’ll be so proud, not even a hint of ground noise.

Other then that life goes and goes and goes. I’m still being a full time dad due to lack of decent employment. But at least I get to watch her grow up, which while theoretically entertaining is about as exciting as watching grass grow. At least for now, I hear it gets better as they get older.

Ran into my old friend Jen. She makes a living selling t-shirts. (Juror2.com) I was thinking of maybe selling custom painted computer cases. It worked well for the laptops in the past so hey why not. I think I just have too much of the Pimp My Ride mentality after buying the new car and visiting Jen at the street fair. But hey a little inspiration never hurt anyone did it?

Well that about wraps up this month, I can always continue to hope that someday I will update this more then once a month but who knows.