Wednesday, June 9, 2010

New iPhone slogan: There's a License Agreement clause for that!

New TV ad idea for Apple:

Suppose some developer makes a
better app than Apple's own apps...

There's a License Agreement clause for that!

 Say new tools make it easy to create apps
that work on both iOS and Android phones.

There's a License Agreement clause for that!

 Next, you lose a bid for a mobile ad network.
That's money Apple doesn't get. The answer is simple.

There's a License Agreement clause for that!

 With the iOS Developer's License Agreement,
anti-competitive behavior has never been easier.

 Made with a Mac.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Don't be shocked when your 2038 butlebot dresses you in bell bottom jeans!

January 19, 2038 at 7:14pm - getting ready to go see the 3rd remake of The Matrix and, yes, the black pleather trenchcoat has finally leapt off the screen to become everyday wear even in sunny California. So why did the stupid butlebot put out bell bottom jeans and a white silk shirt?

Remember Y2K? Computer programs were supposed to melt down when the year changed from 1999 to 2000. Luckily, most programs don't work in decimal notation like humans do, so it wasn't a big deal.

Also, we had the advantage of it being an obvious date to watch out for. Everyone noticed that you couldn't just write 1/1/00 without it looking funny.

But the real Y2K is coming in 28 years. On Tuesday, January 19, 2038 at 03:14:08 GMT (that's 7:14 pm Pacific Time), many, many programs will suddenly think it's midnight on January 1, 1970!

January 19, 2038 at 3:14:08 looks arbitrary, but it's actually a nice round number for computers and internet dates.You see, internet time is usually based on a system invented for an old operating system called UNIX and the programmers decided to start counting at at the beginning of the year 1970. To most computers that is the beginning of time.

So why is January 19, 2038 at 3:14:08 special? Because computers like to count in binary and more specifically in 8, 16, 32 and 64 digit groups. Counting milliseconds from the beginning of time (1970), you reach 2,147,483,648 on that fateful date which is too large of a number to fit in 32 binary digits, so it becomes a 0, which equals 1970.

And computer programs all over the world will think all sorts of things have not happened yet or don't need to happen for several decades. The computers will do something or do nothing and whichever way they choose will be the wrong choice because it won't be 1970 at all, it will be 2038!

Not only will the year be 68 years too early, but the time of year will be 18 days later and the time of day will be 3 hours 14 minutes and 8 seconds later. So, things that happen or don't based on the year, the day or the time will be triggering or not, at the wrong times!

And how many more things will be automated by 2038? LOTS! So, OMG, if we survive 2012, will we still be doomed in 2038? I doubt it will be any sort of major disaster... long as you, dear reader, do your part:

  1. Get some influential friends for a change.
  2. Copy, Paste, Send this page's link to your important new friends.
  3. Make a note-to-self to disable 70's style in your butlebot (or just brush up on finger stabs, hip bumps and other bitchin' dance moves).
  4. Subscribe to forward thinking blogs like this one, so you'll be alerted to brilliant insights about this and other such threats to humanity....and fashion.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Apple Saves Us from Burden of Choice

Apple is once again saving us from ourselves. Oh, joy!!

First they helped protect us from the shocking experience of making calls with Google Voice. Whew! Can you imagine the disorientation of trying to use Google's dialing pad? Luckily, we didn't have to endure the torture of deciding for ourselves about downloading that free app, because Apple held it in approval limbo.

Now with Adobe making the full version of Flash player available for Android, BlackBerry, Symbian, Palm webOS and Windows Mobile, I was getting frightened that even iPhone and iPad users might have to worry about Flash availability too.

Fear not! Apple came to the rescue and stopped Adobe!

If not for Apple, I may have had the terrible experience of playing free Flash games and watching free Flash videos on my iPad.

I mean how did we ever survive the scourge on Flash on our desktop computers since it first appeared 1996? It's a wonder the whole planet didn't melt down considering it's now installed on ~97% of all computers.

Luckily, Apple's crash-proof operating system (well it crashes sometimes, but I'm sure it's someone else's fault, it has to be) and amazing ability to assemble standard parts into a highly proprietary computer has managed to keep us all going.

Thank God Apple managed to protect us from the multi-button mouse for so long, had the foresight to create an Apple key instead of having to use a standard keyboard and press that awful control key, and created proprietary expansion slots and docks so we wouldn't be tempted by naughty non-Apple accessories. Ooh, it makes Apple so special.

And now, we have further proof of Apple's commitment to the customer by shielding us from that bully Adobe trying to give us a free Flash player.

Flash must have been made by some terrorist sleeper cell. How devious to make such great, industry leading software as Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Acrobat, then luring us in with the best rich media solution ever created for the internet.

Us iPhone and iPad users can enjoy a game whenever we want ... to pay for a game, watch videos whenever ... they get converted to HTML 5 video, and look at any web site on the internet whenever ... content creators have enough time, money and incentive to convert all the Flash content to HTML 5.

And some day soon, Apple will save us all from Microsoft and Intel (yeah, they were bad guys a few years back) and Motorola (they used to be the good CPU manufacturer, but turned bad when Intel offered a better deal) and Google (yes, they were good guys, too, but started their own mobile OS, obviously, the move of bad guys) and Adobe (yeah, used to be good until they started hogging the internet instead of letting Quicktime be the video player of choice) and Intel (they may become bad guys again, since Apple can make its own CPUs now) and whoever else gets in the way of Apple's plans for increased revenue and control.

Ooh, just imagine the wondrous potential of the iPad! By 2022, maybe as early as 2012, HTML 5 will be finalized. So you can rest assured that some day, HTML 5 will become supported on enough browsers and might even have enough good development tools that we'll be able to enjoy a limited amount of free content that's almost as good as what browsers supporting Flash have already.

HTML 5 might be a couple of years away, but it will be worth it not having to worry about whether something really cool was built with Flash. One thing is for sure, if something was made with Flash, it must not be good and thankfully I don't need to experience that for myself. Why, I'd never presume to doubt Steve Jobs' sincerity.

Even though I've used Flash for 14 years on my various Windows and Mac computers, even though Flash has been so far ahead of other technologies, both proprietary and open standard technologies, that for the entire 14 years developers have continued to choose Flash almost exclusively for animations, videos, games, ads, product demos and simulations, I believe Apple knows best.

It's obviously much better for the next year or two to purchase apps instead of using them for free, to purchase videos from iTunes or watch Youtube if I want to see videos and wait for the virtually unsupported new HTML 5 to become widespread.

And all that old content, who needs it? As Steve Jobs, says "We don't spend a lot of energy on old technology". All that stinky, old technology is worthless. Never you mind that UNIX is the 30 year old core technology of OS X. Don't think about the age of Quicktime, which was first released in 1991. It's a whole different thing. After all, Quicktime, OS X and Apple software has been updated many times since it was first released.

Flash's updates are not the same at all. When Adobe puts out a Flash update, they are probably just trying to slow glorious Apple products even more than they already have, adding new features just so Flash will use more CPU power.

Of course, Apple software updates never require any additional CPU power. I bet Snow Leopard would run just fine on my old 350MHz eMac. There's an idea, Apple! Why not get your super efficient, perfect, fancy new OS 10.6 to run on old Mac computers and show those lazy Adobe engineers that a few new features shouldn't hog any more CPU power!

It makes me laugh to think of the way those lazy Adobe engineers waste time making Flash run well on so many devices, operating systems and browsers. Don't they realize only Apple matters?

Come on people, forget about those nerds over at Google, Adobe and Microsoft. Proprietary is only cool if it's done by Apple.