Entries Tagged as 'apple'

Apple… where facts becomes just a bug to fix.

I have lots of friends, yes shock I know, who are either scientists or “that way” inclined.

Most of which would agree with the quote “You can have your opinions but not your own facts” ( those that don’t agree, we will have to renegotiate the friendship agreement ).

But it turns out, not if you’re an Apple iPhone user, facts are actually not facts.

Via Fairfax: “Apple has leapt to repair an embarrassing bug that last week caused the personal assistant app Siri to declare that the Nokia Lumia 900 was the best smartphone ever.

The article says that Siri pulls “Facts” from Wolfram|Alpha ( The article actually states WolphramAlpha, but we know that Fairfax outsourced sub-editing anyway ).

However if you were to ask Siri what is the best phone is, fact is not something that would be returned.  What is returned is opinion.

Are Fact verse Opinion clearly delineated when you get a result? Of course they aren’t.

Most people would think this is a small issue. What does it matter that that Apple would “fix” their software to support themselves.

Shades of the future via the Simpsons comes to mind

Troy: Now turn to the next problem.  If you have three Pepsis and drink one, how much more refreshed are you?  You,the redhead in the Chicago school system?
Girl: Pepsi?
Troy: partial credit!”

We let companies get away with this, after all facts are such trivial things.

My question immediately is what other facts simply became collateral damage.

Where does the line get drawn. Perhaps we are already so far passed it, there is no turning back.



You think 12Mpbs is Enough….. A Look back at the last 10 years.

We will take 12Mbps as the likely outcome for the majority of Australians if we don’t get the NBN. Of course the argument goes that no one needs 1gbps because there isn’t a user case for it. And even 100mpbs would be a waste because private industry didn’t build it already.

Just stop and think about the last 10 years in Australia and the tools that we use. Then after reading this think about what you are going to do in 10 years time.

Starting a bit before 10 years ago, in 1992 there were two yes two ISP’s in Australia. Telstra weren’t to switch on ADSL until 2000. And it wasn’t until 2006 that Telstra removed the cap and let ADSL1 get to 8Mbps. ( BTW how many people actually get that kind of speed)

Google which is now such an integral part of some many of our lives ( see all those ads on the side) only overtook Altavista in 2000. YouTube launched in Nov 2005, only to be grabbed by Google less than a year later for a cool US$1.65 billion in Google Stock.. Now people upload more than 24 hours of content every single minute. Google Maps which is doing a fine job of killing of map directories launched in 2007. Street View didn’t hit Australia till August 2008. Yes just a squeak over 2 years ago.

Flickr, didn’t launch until Feb 2004. It wasn’t until December 2006 that pro accounts got unlimited uploads. In this month Flickr officially had its 5billionth photo uploaded, given that the 4billionth shot was uploaded in Oct 2009, that is 1 billion photos in 11months. Uploads run to around 3,000 per minute.

MySpace… much maligned at the looser to Facebook launched in 2002. But still for the looser they are still the 32nd most visited website in the world. Which of course leads to the current behemoth that is Facebook. It didn’t launch to the public until September 2006. 4 years later it has ½ a billion users. They are now the number 2 visited website, with of course Google still number 1. (Source Alexa.com)

Of the Top 10 sites as September 2010, really only Yahoo and Windows Live can claim to have been any sort of influence pre 2000. YouTube, Facebook, Baidu, Wikipedia, Blogspot and Twitter just didn’t exist. These are content rich sites. They are not just light weight text sites, but sites with rich media, photos, HD Video e.t.c.

The big argument is about wireless taking over and making Fibre to the Home obsolete. Ignoring the obvious thing about the physics of it all and that fact that you can just your N grade wifi with many of the new devices to connect to the backbone at your home or work, let think about wireless devices.

It wasn’t until the N95 that you could get a 5megapixel camera and GPS in one device. That was March 2007. Nokia also gave us the first phone with a compass, in 2008. Apple didn’t launch the first IPhone until June 2007. The IPhone 4 now has a 5megapixel camera. The Nokia N8 is launching with a 12 mega-pixel camera, with 8 mega-pixels becoming common on high end phones. Nokia in 2008 became the world’s largest manufacturer of any kind of camera. These devices now support N Wifi, with its data capabilities of 600mbit/s. Telstra’s Next G has speeds upto 42Mbit/s. So are you going to rely on just wireless or use your local or someone else’s WiFi network.

My phone has a 1 GHz CPU, 10 years ago that was the top of the line CPU for home computers. Now I do lots of stuff on the move, but the heavy lifting as it were is done at home on the big computer, the one with 12gig of ram and 3tb of storage.

The advent of P2P has forced a dramatic change in the way we view television and listen to music as well. Napster only came onto the scene in 1999. Bit Torrent wasn’t released as a protocol until 2001, now it is estimated to be anywhere between 20-50% of Internet Traffic. Whereas previously Australia was often low down in the priority order for showing first run shows, now networks “RUSH” TV shows often within a day or less of airing internationally just to circumvent this technology. The ABC only launched IView in 2008. In 2010 is launched live streaming of ABCNews24 (chewing up around 300mb p/h ) in the process. Now all the channels offer some sort of IPTV Catch up service.

This is just a sample of various tech over the last 10 years. Many of the examples above are only 5 years old. The other big advantage of the NBN is that either end of the cable can be upgraded, so the 1gbps is an artificial limit. In some respects it happens to be the most cost effective for deployment for the whole project.

There is no technology on the horizon that is going to be able to compete with Fibre to the Home for speed. This is a rare chance for Australia to be a world leader with all the benefits that will bring. Or it is a chance for us to shy away and spend the next 10 years catching up. Look above to see what happened in the last 10 years, the clock is ticking.

The real reason I'm not Flashing Froyo on my Desire

As a rule I tend to break things.  Not break in the bad way, but break things so they work.  Now that can be from region freeing my dvd player to mashing the hell out of my computer to get software on it.

But I’m not going to flash my HTC Desire and put Froyo on it.  And I think at least some of you need not to as well.  Most of my friends with iPhones just go out and jailbreak them.  Why, so they can make the phone work.  But the jailbreak is very like the flashing of an Android Phone, it gives the power user a whole lot more.

And this is the problem all the “experts” have.  They are power users.  They could hack batch files, create yahoo pipes feeds to pull custom RSS and break their phone to sideload apps.  All great things, and things that I often do myself.  But this is not the general audience, yet we are the ones that build for that audience. (Like the Rubiks cube… most people didn’t complete it)

One rule of thumb I have always had when developing software is.. “If I use the shortcuts that I know all the time to get something done, I’ve done it wrong”.  The audience won’t know the shortcuts.  Some may over time learn them and good for those users.  But the average user will never take the time to learn your shortcuts.  Either it will be intuitive for them or chances are they will go elsewhere.

Now I only have one Android phone and I use it all the time to me it is a computer in my hand and not a phone.  Still to most phone users they are buying a phone first and it does some other stuff a very distant second.  I can still heavily tweak my phone (which I’ve done), but at the end of the day the user experience is the same as anyone else who buys one from the store.

This means I can show people things that don’t require them to void the warranty for example, or risk turning the $800 device into a light weight paper holder.

It pays to remember if you are developing Apps for these phones that the chances are your audience is not as smart as you. So always test and retest on their platform, not yours.  Like with browsers, IE still has market share.  Yes make all singing all dancing HTML 5 Canvas apps with only OGG video if you want, but if you want to reach a wider audience stop and think about IE7.

When Froyo comes as on OTA update I will be installing it that day for sure, but until then I will be using my phone for testing and evaluating software the same as everyone else who has it.

Sometimes keeping your tech dumb does make you smarter.

everyone is doing iPad posts…

Everyone is doing it…  of course they are…  but really how many of the posts are nothing more than link bait…  if I put iPad into a post it will get more visits…  Just how many words are being spent on the iPad, when say there are actually important things happening in the world.  I think more has been written about the iPad in Australia than the govts change of heart on the ETS.

So here are two posts in one…

A pro iPad and then an antiIpad post….


Magical device blah blah.
Revolutionary device blah blah blah
This changes the face of publishing blah blah
Taking the world by storm blah blah.
OMG how did we live with out this blah blah blah
Steve has shown the way of the future blah blah blah.
Flash is just for advertising blah blah blah
I waited 7 days in a blizzard for it blah blah blah
So many great apps blah blah blah
So much better than the iPhone blah blah blah
It replaces 500 devices in my house blah blah blah
Everyone should release an iPad version of their blah blah blah


Flash is an important part of the web blah blah blah
Close ecosystem blah blah blah
4×3 video is a waste of blah blah blah
No camera no blah blah blah
Queuing for a computer is just stupid blah blah
Oh you can change Job’s liver but not the battery blah blah blah
No Mulitasking blah blah blah
iTunes is just screwing developers blah blah blah
It is just a big iPhone that can’t make calls blah blah blah
Just more e-waste that does nothing my blah cant do blah blah blah
Why do we have to recode blah blah blah for the iPad


Under the post you may or may not find lots of pro and anti Apple flame wars…  although I doubt it 🙂

I think I’ll leave the conclusion to iPad Lorem Ipsum…. it seems only fitting, and possibly better research than a lot of content out there.

Nunc iPad lectus a urna commodo iPad. Apple feugiat ipad consectetur diam revolution scelerisque. Suspendisse iPad dui a Apple dictum Steve Jobs. Vivamus quis iPad magic sapien placerat blandit vitae in iPad. Apple erat magical, pulvinar nec elementum sed, facilisis sit amet est. Praesent ipad, tincidunt semper publishing industry, ornare vel turpis. Fusce lots of apps pharetra. Aenean tincidunt dapibus iPad, eu aliquam sem Apple non.

Why #section331 makes Apple Beta and Android VHS

Remember Beta Folks, ok for you younger ones it was like HD DVD, one of those great formats that a still few use in high end roles but went the way of the dodo.

Today’s announcement of Section 3.1.1 by Apple.

“Applications may only use Documented APIs in the manner prescribed by Apple and must not use or call any private APIs. ”

Of course this is aimed squarely at Adobe and the upcoming CS5 which will let Flash Developers port to the “I” platform. And as it turns out happens to be the biggest step down the road of turning Apple into the next Beta Format. Like Beta it will be around for many years to come and I am sure that many people (most much smarter than I) will be able to put forward lots of technical reasons why the Native only path is the best way to go.

But why did the public, yes not developers and not marketers choose VHS over Beta… because it was cheaper easier and OPEN. Sure when VHS was first coming out, Beta was better, but people didn’t care.

Apple got the jump going for the “people” aspect with the iphone… but the market is bigger than just the iphone and whilst Nokia still hold the high ground on numbers and devices (Sorry Apple users but my N95-8gb is still more useful than an iphone!), Android is on the rise.

Reviewers who have lauded the iphone and now looking at devices like the Nexus One and the HTC Desire which pack all the “wow” of the iphone with one extra little toy… OPEN Platform.

Now if you are a development company and can build a new game/widget/etc and output it via Flash to Android, Nokia, WinMo and all the devices that are on this.. but miss the “I” platform what are you going to do. In the medium term, sure you will develop for both, but not long term.

The restrictions of the “I” world are starting to bite and the noose is getting tighter, due in no part to Apple pulling on it themselves.

The times are a changing.. the rise of Android will see to that… the rise of the OPEN environment where people change things on their device without voiding warranty are coming….

This graph helps to show the rise of Android in the Mobile Operating System Market in the US….

Mobile OS Traffic Share in the US
(Source from JavaLobby)

If you are reading this…. Chances are you are not the iPad audience…

I’ve given up even trying to read the pro and anti iPad hype or even the iTampon jokes (yes I may have made one or two on twitter myself).  I’ve given up trying to argue with zealot fans on both sides of the argument (*). I’ve even given up reading the tech specs of the competing devices or which price point each device fits into.

Lake Mountain Snow ChaseI thought about doing a blog post pointing out how my 3 year old Asus R2H is still more powerful. How flexible and user friendly it is in the full knowledge that I could do a nice little graph showing all the features and benefits of the device.  Here in lies the issue, the R2H is a great device which I use all the time. Sadly though as one of the first Origami devices from Asus and Microsoft most of you have never heard of it.

This is a device like so many was built for those like me. Not built for an audience that was going to buy it.

This is where people are failing in their criticism of the iPad.  Of course the Kindle is cheaper; of course a Win7 based netbook has more functionality for half the price; of course the Nexus One has a processor just as if not faster.

Why would anyone buy an iPod when the Zen drives have more storage and are cheaper.

Yes if you are reading this and even know what a Zen drive is you are already showing yourself not to be the target audience.  In a world where people Google for something, Photoshop an image and listen to their music on an iPod you see what has become genericized in the tech industry.  People may not even use Google, Photoshop or an iPod, but these are the terms we use when using similar tools. Not because these companies were the first (or even best) but they were the ones that created the tools and the framework to establish themselves as the dominate paradigm and a verb.

The CrowdSure the iPad doesn’t have a changeable battery, can’t multitask, is a closed OS environment, doesn’t have Flash, and so forth.  There is also the very long list of acronyms that the public never understand, that is does and does not have. Even with all of these points there is the fact that it costs more than devices that can do all of the above.

The feature list on my 2 year old Nokia N95-8GB in some aspects still outstrips the iPhone 3GS, such as the camera, flash, Real (for streaming audio), multitasking. Which phone do people now own and which phone do people even remember.

People are buying iPhones and iPods despite the reasons the tech commentators complained about in the first place.  Why because Apple marketed the devices to the people that wanted them, not people like you and I.

When I built my new computer for home last year it would have cost me twice as much to build even close to the same specs in the Apple environment, but then I am not the audience.  If you are dual booting your Mac laptop into Linux distro’s and have jail -broken your iPhone you also are not the audience.

Front row at #media140The iPad will make a lot of money for Apple, you developers are going to need them.  I guarantee before year’s end you will see people sitting on the train reading books and watching video on the commute to and from work.  Parents will buy them for themselves and quickly work out that the iPad is the perfect way to quiet children in waiting room or the back of the car. Before very long they will be buying a second device just for the kids.

We can at least for today all pat ourselves on the back as we all know why we won’t buy the iPad.

The arguments that we all used when the iPod and the iPhone were released are still the same today with this new device.  Yet the cult of Mac has grown, grown to the point that now a large number of very technical people use nothing but Mac.  Sure it is not Mac as the public knows it but seeing the Apple logo on the back on a laptop all they see is that it’s a Mac.

Yes we are not the audience… but a large number of you even reading this blog will go out and buy one.  You’ll wait for the jail-break and side load all that useful software.  Some of you will even work out how to put Linux or even Android on the device and Apple will be grateful for the sale.

But you are not the audience, try and remember that.

*ok this part is not true 🙂

Hacking goes Mainstream.

Thought I would put up this blog post before “The Age changes its mind an modifies the article

The article is here

“The release of the Pwnage 2.0.1 hack is likely to spark a surge of developer interest in the device. Already an emulator for the archaic Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) games console has been released, allowing users to play NES games on their iPhone.

Other unofficial applications developed for the iPhone include Navizon (improves the built-in GPS by updating the user’s location very 10 seconds, not just when the “locate me” button is pushed), iSMS (send text messages to multiple recipients) and Native VNC (control your Mac or PC from the iPhone).

The hack can only be installed from a Mac computer but step-by-step instructions for Windows users can be found here.”

Now what is most interesting here is not that someone has found at least a partial way to Jailbreak the IPhone 2.0 nor the fact that The Age is covering the story as the story is valid.  It is both that they point out the benefits and LINK to the software and instructions.

The Age is telling you why and how to do something that is illegal! Hacking your IPhone, whilst I agree is a damned good idea is one thing, main stream media telling you how to do it is a seismic shift in the market.

What Apples reaction to a big corporation with lots of money they could sue could be interesting.  Both if they do and if they don’t do anything!  Tacit approval for hacking your Iphone comes from Apple doing or saying nothing about this article.  Which of course adds more fuel to fire for the case for Apple to really open up the device to the average user not just those brave enough to follow a hacking link in The Age!

Iphone pricing in Oz.. & possibly free wifi for all…

So yesterday one of the worst kept secrets in the world finally came out and Telstra announced they are going to carry the Iphone.  Big deal… 🙂

Anyway they also announced pricing… (according to news.com.au)

you are looking at anywhere from $999 to $2400 depending on phone and data plan. One sting has to be that on the $30p/m plan the initial cost is $279 not $210 which is should be given the dollar.  But if Telstra want to make a few more bucks cause people are going to buy this phone in the bucket load so be it.  Oh yeah and when Apple release another Iphone in 12 months time you are screwed… why because it is a 24 Month contract.

Telstra do have a MAJOR marketing edge over all the other carriers in Australia.  The Iphone works on the 850Mhz band and so does NextG.  Still there is no talk of just how much data you are going to get on your $30p/m plan but at a guess I am going to say not much!

There is also a lot of discussion floating around about how Telstra will pitch “Big Pond Movies/Music” when the Iphone is going to point people to Itunes.  That is going to be an interesting space to watch.

So now people can compare the Iphone as a $1000 phone to all other $1000 phones out in the market.  That is things like the n95-8gb, the HTC Diamond e.t.c.  Which of course will start to show the phone in a very different light.  The 2mg camera starts to look a bit crap when you are paying $1000 for the phone for example.

A good kicker also for Telstra is opening up the telstra wi-fi hot spots to Iphone users.  Think McDonald’s, Starbucks, most capital cities cbd’s e.t.c  That is an impressive amount of free data that you will be able to access at a lot of very convient locations.  I think that the creation of these “free” hot spots will help to start a cascade of free wifi hotspots, which will not be device specific.

This is not limited of course to the Iphone.  I for one am looking forward to the fudges that will come out so I can spoof the wi-fi to say that my Nokia is an Iphone, my R2H is an Iphone and any other device I want is an Iphone just to get free wifi.

So instead of paying 20cents per minute to access Telstra wi-fi hotspots in the future I will be on an Iphone.

Symbian + Nokia = OpenSource

(update  — AllaboutSymbian have a great over view.. well worth the read here)

Well its been a busy few hours in the press release world for both Symbian and Nokia.

Nokia are going to purchase around 52 percent of Symbian shares it does not already own.   And then with that purchase they have also announced….


“Open software is the basic building block for delivering this future.
With this in mind, industry leaders are coming together to establish Symbian Foundation, to bring to life a shared vision and to create the most proven, open and complete mobile software platform – available for free. To achieve this, the foundation will unify Symbian, S60, UIQ and
MOAP(S) software to create an unparalleled open software platform for converged mobile devices, enabling the whole mobile ecosystem to accelerate innovation.”

Now this is a big heads up to the following players, Apple with their SDK, MS with the Windows Mobile and Google with Android.  Consider the companies that the new Symbian Foundation has on board already…

docomo, ericsson, fujituse, lg, mororola, saumsung, sony plus telcos such as at&t (taking each way money with IPhone as well as Nokia) vodaphone, orange and others.

Now with a unified development application environment in play over the next year or so leveraging off the large market share that Symbian already has and then shifting development into the OS Community Nokia have managed to pull of what I think is a very clever and long term strategic development.

Watch this space kiddies… mobile is going to get much more interesting yet.

Dumbest comments…

Oh where to start… there have been oh so many dumb comments about the iphone in the last week. Most of which have made me go from various shades of slightly grumpy to totally incredulous.

But I thought I would put two of my favs up now (I may come back and edit this page later :-))


How many HTC Touch versions of ANY websites are there? None
How many cars offer full integration with your Samsung Instinct? None

Oh my god didily dang…

two little observations about these points….

All websites can work with HTC touch if they are coded correctly(that is they are properly compliant to web standards and have a mobile css) and oh yeah the play flash as well!

and the second point… firstly any phone that offers bluetooth can be integrated and oh yes in stereo as well. This person seriously thinks about spending say 1k on an Iphone which is what it will cost at least, and then bases say a 30k car on this. The phone will be obsolete come next year (if not earlier) and the car? I can just see the car for sale adds in the future.

Good car, low km’s (sorry doesn’t support Iphone2.2, ready for quick sale)

People it is a phone, it is obsolete before it lefts the shop, you will drop it loose and scratch it. That happens. Get used to it and stop thinking that it is the best thing since sliced bread. The best thing since sliced bread was spreadable butter, that way your bread did not get mangled. (and whilst bread and butter both have a used by date, they are not obsolete!)

edit– this sums it up the best

Apple Is to Geeks What Breasts Are to Men

contains such great lines as

“It’s like watching a group of teenage boys who have never seen a pair of breasts lining up to get a peek at their first Playboy.”


“At the end of the day, as much as I love breasts, I won’t pay money for them and I certainly won’t wait in line for them.”

go and read it….