AppleInsider.com: Steve Ballmer calls Apple’s Mac growth a “rounding error”

From AppleInsider.com: Steve Ballmer calls Apple’s Mac growth a “rounding error”

“Share versus Apple, you know, we think we may have ticked up a little tick,” Ballmer said at the 2009 Financial Analyst Meeting, “but when you get right down to it, it’s a rounding error. Apple’s share change, plus or minus from ours, they took a little share a couple quarters, we took share back a couple quarters.”

A “rounding error”?

“At least when Apple attacks us, the primary attack that
comes from Apple is, ‘Hey, at the end of the day, we have the coolest
hardware,’” he said. “When you see the hardware, the PC designs that
will come out this Christmas with Windows 7, I think that conventional
wisdom can begin to really change. There is some really amazing,
amazing work. So it is possible to get great hardware innovation, even
when hardware and software comes from separate companies.”

It’s funny that Steve Ballmer still doesn’t get it.  It’s not just hardware that’s the problem.  It’s Windows and the integration with hardware.  Apple’s “coolness” comes from good software and hardware design and a strong design aesthetic.  Apple products are designed to be simpler and to work better.  Better design through hardware and software.  When Apple wanted to release a phone, it designed a touch screen and the interface to go with it.  Owning the hardware and software means tighter integration and experience.

Battlestar Galactica Blu-Ray unboxing pictures

Got my Battlestar Galactica: The Complete Series Blu-ray box set from Amazon today.  Here are my unboxing photos.
BSGBlu1.pngThe box top slides up to for access to the boxes for each season.
BSGBlu2.pngThe boxes are simple cardboard boxes with a flap held closed with velcro.  The discs slide in between cardboard dividers.  Seems a little cheap to me.  I would rather have traditional DVD cases where the disc can be held in place.  I’m a little afraid that the discs might get scratched sliding them in and out.
BSGBlu3.pngOn the top of the box there’s a poseable Cylon Centurian.  BSGBlu4.pngIt’s a cool looking box, but the packaging is kind of bulky and not really too practical for storing discs.  I’ll probably end up putting the Season boxes in my A/V cabinet and the big box in storage.

UPDATE:
Started watching part of the first season last night.  The quality of the on screen menus are a huge improvement over the DVD’s.  The picture quality is sharper that the DVD but BSG was shot with a film-like style with grain keeps it from looking like the sharpest Blu-ray movies.  Bright scenes like on Cloud Nine in “Colonial Day” are crystal clear with lots of detail.  The deleted scenes are still in standard definition.

ESPN.com: Belichick praises Vick’s athleticism

From ESPN.com: Belichick praises Vick’s athleticism

New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick isn’t saying whether his team is interested in Michael Vick.

After the Patriots’ first practice of training camp Thursday, Belichick was asked his thoughts about Vick’s possible return to the NFL. He praised Vick’s athleticism but left it at that. Vick said Thursday that he’s getting close to signing with a team.

If New England signs Michael Vick, the media will gush about how it’s a great signing and a brilliant move.  If the Bengals signed him, people would be rolling their eyes saying “There they go again.”

electronista.com: Microsoft stores open first in Apple-heavy cities

From electronista.com: Microsoft stores open first in Apple-heavy cities

Microsoft’s first retail stores will launch in two cities where Apple already has a major presence, the company confirmed today. The Windows developer has signed leases both in Mission Viejo, California as well as Scottsdale, Arizona and will be surrounded by Apple retail shops. The California store will be the only one to open in the same mall as its rival, launching in The Shops at Mission Viejo, but all of them will have five Apple stores within driving distance.

It plans to primarily sell notebook PCs, software from itself as well as others, and its own Xbox 360 and Zune hardware. Stocks reiterated that the stores are primarily showcases to highlight the brand, but unlike past executives stated that its retail shops are expected to be profitable rather than just experiments to pass on information to others.

Although it has said its stores would innovate, the leak alluded to a Guru Bar that would copy Apple’s Genius bar as well as similar workshops and open store layouts.

Apple Stores are extremely popular because it’s pretty much the only place to get Apple stuff.  There is no way the Microsoft stores will generate the kind of revenue that Apple Stores do, selling Zune’s and Xbox 360′s and laptops.  I hope they build one in Cincinnati so I can bring in my parents’ virus infested laptop to the “Guru Bar”.