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Technology Bill Gates Joins the iPad’s Army of Critics. Steve Jobs Couldn’t Care Less. Bill Gates Joins the iPad’s Army of Critics. Steve Jobs Couldn’t Care Less

I wasn’t sure what to expect when I asked Jobs’ longtime rival, Bill Gates, what he thought of the iPad. After all, Gates has been a proponent of tablet computers for years, and he was in awe of the iPhone when it first came out. But the iPad?  Gates told me he isn’t sold.

“You know, I’m a big believer in touch and digital reading, but I still think that some mixture of voice, the pen and a real keyboard – in other words a netbook – will be the mainstream on that,” he said. “So, it’s not like I sit there and feel the same way I did with iPhone where I say, ‘Oh my God, Microsoft didn’t aim high enough.’  It’s a nice reader, but there’s nothing on the iPad I look at and say, ‘Oh, I wish Microsoft had done it.'”

Microsoft has tried and failed with the Tablet PC since 2001 which of course makes Bill Gates an expert in predicting the success of the iPad.  The iPad like the iPhone will succeed because it breaks away from the conventional PC’s in a way that opens up new possibilities in computing.  Mimicking old technology, just gets you more of the same.

Microsoft has failed with the Tablet PC because of their inability to break away from its legacy items: Windows, keyboards, and the stylus.  Even their new phone is called the “Windows” Phone. 

To me, Microsoft is one of the most disappointing companies around.  All these years they should have pushing the envelope of computing and making products so great that they make us forget about Windows.  Not because Windows is bad, but because Windows shouldn’t be the end all and be all of computing.


Save money on MobileMe renewals at Amazon

This is my yearly reminder that you can save money on MobileMe by purchasing it from
  My MobileMe was set to expire this week so last week I picked it up for $71.99 with free shipping.

What you get from Amazon is a small cd sized box.
MobileMe2010.jpgInside the box there’s a couple of white Apple stickers and a sheet with the activation code that you enter at  By buying from Amazon, I saved $27.01.MobileMe2010A.jpg


Microsoft should replace Steve Ballmer with Fake Steve Jobs

Microsoft should consider replacing Steve Ballmer with Fake Steve Jobs.  While Steve Ballmer is giving interviews and talking about “attack vectors” and “mama don’t let your phones grow up to be PC”, Fake Steve Jobs is giving insight on hybridized content:

New technology spawns new ways to tell stories. That’s the really exciting thing here. Not the tablet itself, but what it means for news, for entertainment, for literature. Gasp. Geddit? Is the fucking light going off yet? This is what Anton Chekhov meant when he said that the medium is the message. This is why the Tablet is so profound.

There is no point in moving to digital readers if we’re just going to do what we did on paper. That’s why Kindle is such a piece of shit. All they did was pave the cowpath. And that’s why we’ve held back on our Tablet — not because the technology wasn’t ready, but because the content guys are such fucktards that they still can’t create anything that makes it worth putting the Tablet into the world.

The media companies are stuck with the ideas of defined media and their old way of thinking.  This is a book, this is a newspaper, this is an album, this is a TV show, etc.

My guess is that the truly revolutionary content is not going to come from the old-guard publishers. It’s going to come from new guys, kids who have grown up digital. This notion of mashing together elements comes naturally to them. And somewhere out there, a genius is waiting to be discovered — the Orson Welles of digital media, someone who will create an entirely new language for storytelling. If you’re reading this, Orson Jr., please get in touch. I’ve got something I want to show you. Okay? Peace. Tablet Part Two: The true significance of the Tablet Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer: Chrome And Safari Are Rounding Errors

Technology Some E-Books Are More Equal Than Others Some E-Books Are More Equal Than Others

This morning, hundreds of Amazon Kindle owners awoke to discover that books by a certain famous author had mysteriously disappeared from their e-book readers. These were books that they had bought and paid for–thought they owned.

The MobileReference edition of the novel, “Nineteen Eighty-four,” by George Orwell that was deleted from Kindle e-book readers by
But no, apparently the publisher changed its mind about offering an electronic edition, and apparently Amazon, whose business lives and dies by publisher happiness, caved. It electronically deleted all books by this author from people’s Kindles and credited their accounts for the price.

This is pretty shocking.  I know Amazon refunded the money, but the fact that it removed the book from the Kindle is wrong.  Stuff disappears from iTunes all the time, but never from your iPod or iPhone after you’ve purchased it.

The funny thing is that I’ve been looking to re-read George Orwell’s 1984, especially with all the issues with privacy, control of flow of information, etc.  I guess hard copy is the way to go.

Technology Google Plans a PC Operating System

From Google Plans a PC Operating System

The software, called the Google Chrome Operating System, is initially intended for use in the tiny, low-cost portable computers known as netbooks, which have been selling quickly even as demand for other PCs has plummeted. Google said it believed the software would also be able to power full-size PCs.

Google has already developed an open-source operating system called Android that is used in mobile phones. The software is also being built into netbooks by several manufacturers.

But Google has not encouraged netbook makers to use Android. The company appears to be positioning Chrome OS as its preferred operating system for netbooks, though it said competition between the two systems would likely drive innovation.

It seems strange to me that Google is developing two different operating systems for devices that fill pretty much the same space, mobile devices.  If Apple decides to compete against netbooks with a larger touch tablet there’s little doubt that they’d be using the iPhone OS.

Overall, I think that Google feels the need to dabble in a lot of things, but outside of search, things have not always taken off.


My iPhone 3GS is here- unboxing photos

My iPhone 3GS arrived by FedEx and now I’m waiting for AT&T to activate my phone.  The screen says that it may take some time.  In the meantime in the tradition of Apple fans worldwide, here’s the unboxing of my iPhone 3GS.

Created with Admarket’s flickrSLiDR.

Update: My first impressions and miscellaneous notes

The screen of the iPhone 3GS is a lot warmer (more yellow) than my first generation iPhone.  I like the colder blue of the original better.  Surfing the web in Safari is a lot faster.  I’ve tested it on WIFI but not yet on 3G.

Setting up the phone with AT&T took only a few minutes in iTunes but took about 15 minutes for AT&T to recognize the iPhone 3GS.  The old iPhone still works completely but now shows “No Service” in the menu bar.  It’s essentially now an 8 Gig iPod Touch.  You can still access the AppStore and download applications over WIFI.  Also, you don’t have to worry about transferring your applications to the new iPhone.  You can re-download applications from the Apple Store for free.

The “Find my iPhone” function of MobileMe didn’t work for me.  Got this error message saying that it couldn’t find my phone.
findmyiphone.jpgI tried sending myself a message from MobileMe, but that didn’t work either.  The funny thing is that about 15 minutes after I sent it, my OLD iPhone started pinging me with my old message.  We’ll have to see if it eventually figures it out and sends messages to my new iPhone.

UPDATE: iTunes automatically set up my email addresses and servers but didn’t transfer the password to my MobileMe account.  Once I entered the MobileMe password, the “Find my iPhone” function worked.  The iPhone in the picture above is actually the original iPhone.  Now, when I go to “Find my iPhone” it shows two iPhones, the original and the new 3GS.


U.S. Military purchasing iPhones and iPods

From Apple’s New Weapon via

The U.S. military in the past would give a soldier an electronic handheld device, made at great expense specially for the battlefield, with the latest software. But translation is only one of many software applications soldiers now need. The future of “networked warfare” requires each soldier to be linked electronically to other troops as well as to weapons systems and intelligence sources. Making sense of the reams of data from satellites, drones and ground sensors cries out for a handheld device that is both versatile and easy to use. With their intuitive interfaces, Apple devices–the iPod Touch and, to a lesser extent, the iPhone–are becoming the handhelds of choice.

What people who don’t own iPods or iPhones aren’t realizing is that these devices are very capable, portable, and easy to use computers.  The Blackberry is a good communication device, but the iPhone and iPod are much more.  The 3.0 version of the iPhone OS will expand on this with their ability to interact with devices through the dock connector.  I expect to see all sorts of specialty peripherals developed and applications that use the iPhone and iPod to control other devices.

Technology GM, Segway to Make Vehicle GM, Segway to Make Vehicle

General Motors Corp. is teaming with Segway Inc., maker of the upright, self-balancing scooters, to build a new type of two-wheeled vehicle designed to move easily through congested urban streets.

The machine, which GM says it aims to develop by 2012, would run on batteries and use wireless technology to avoid traffic backups and navigate cities.

The problem with a vehicle like this is similar to the issues with the Segway.  Where are you going to drive it?  You can’t drive it on sidewalks and when it’s in the road you’re going to be driving against trucks and SUV’s.  Something like this won’t take off until you dedicate separate lanes for ultra-small vehicles.

Some cool pictures and prototype video on the NYTimes website.