Wednesday Jul 29, 2009

links for 2009-7-29: Microsoft changes ads; Google Voice Mobile for iPhone; Intuit going open source

Tuesday Jul 28, 2009

Apple Stifling Innovation

I previously wrote some initial and additional thoughts on Google Latitude highlighting some of the pitfalls of it being browser based.  There have been others that have written but this one points out that the story of not confusing the user with the Maps app has a bunch of holes in it.  In the end, this stifles innovation.

Then I come across a story on Apple blocking Google Voice from the App Store that reinforces the notion that they are stifling innovation.  Now, in this case it is likely due in part to pressure from AT&T, but there are official Google Voice apps for other mobile devices so it is still Apple that is caving in this case.  And if true that Phil Schiller had personally approved it and had to call to apologize, it is more embarrassing but also probably proof that it came from AT&T or (gasp) Steve.

I can understand, but don't agree with, why Apple would restrict apps may adversely affect battery life or confuse the average user, but outright not allowing interesting and creative apps that are ground breaking and available on other mobile devices is just wrong.  I love my iPhone and am happy I made the purchase as Android wasn't mature enough yet and I can jailbreak to get around some of Apple's restrictions, but I'm growing increasingly open to my next phone being something else as the other platforms mature and don't impose the restrictions Apple does.

Sunday Jul 26, 2009

links for 2009-7-27: Mozilla and Google gets tricky; Apple Tablet; iPhone Encryption

  • For Mozilla and Google, Group Hugs Get Tricky - "In short, Mozilla showed the world that browsers matter. Now the challenge is to keep proving that Mozilla matters."  I think Mozilla and Firefox absolutely do matter.  Some interest notes on how Google rationalized building Chrome given their relationship with Mozilla and Firefox.
  • Apple's tablet in time for Christmas? - I wouldn't call it a Newton, but I don't think it would fail like the Newton either.
  • Hacker Says iPhone 3GS Encryption Is ‘Useless’ for Businesses - Yet another "feature" of the 3G S that doesn't compel me to want to fork out the cash to upgrade.  “Apple may be technically correct that [the iPhone 3GS] has an encryption piece in it, but it’s entirely useless toward security.”

Additional Thoughts on Google Latitude for iPhone and Apple vs Google, Apple vs Palm?

I wrote up some initial thoughts on Google Latitude for the iPhone a few days ago and this morning I come across this ZDNet blog entry on the struggle between Apple and Google on native vs browser based apps.  While a part of me admires Apple for going to extreme lengths to ensure their devices have a good user experience, in this case their desire to control the device is, IMHO, not providing the best experience.  As noted in my blog there are a few quirks and serious limitations that I think wouldn't be there if it was a native app or otherwise restricted by Apple's review process.

That said, Apple does control the device and Latitude not being available for the iPhone was a glaring gap so Google no doubt had to accept the limitations.  And clearly Apple is being successful with the iPhone, but at what point will Apple have to relinquish some control or risk losing market share to other devices running Android?  The iPhone has a head start but you can be sure that Android will improve and the openness of the platform will be an advantage that will benefit it.

And related, but in the Apple vs Palm front, as you are probably aware, one of the Palm Pre's touted features was being able to sync with iTunes.  Apple used their control of the platform to break that sync'ing with an iTunes update, but Palm has countered with an OS update that makes the sync'ing work again.  When will this cycle end?  Probably not any time soon.

Thursday Jul 16, 2009

links for 2009-7-16: Twitter founder hacked; Apple market share slips; webOS SDK

Friday Jun 26, 2009

iPhone Jailbreak App Update

I blogged about upgrading and jailbreaking my iPhone several days ago and noted that several apps I had grown attached to weren't working under OS 3.0.  I'm pleased to say that 2 of the 4 that weren't working now are.

Using Cydia, the latest versions of Insomnia and Backgrounder can be installed and seem to work fine.  Of course, some of the optional features of Backgrounder aren't working yet, but the basic function to put an app in the background is.  Of course, Cydia is confused and keeps telling me there is an available upgrade of Backgrounder,

Unfortunately, Mobile Finder doesn't appear to be updated nor does LogoMe.  But Mobile Finder was more of something just to show folks for the Gee Whiz factor and I've got the boot logo I want so not having LogoMe isn't an issue.

I'll update as I uncover more. 

Friday Dec 05, 2008

links for 2008-12-5: BlackBerry Storm, Apple Parody, Inflatable Car

Sunday Nov 09, 2008

If You Buy a Mac

My recent "Why Buy a Mac" blog about sitting next to someone on a plane running Windows on a Mac received a number of comments so I thought I'd respond to some.

There were several OpenSolaris related comments and I'm all for using it. I've installed the 200805 release in a VirtualBox VM on my Mac as well as native on an old Dell I have. And I recently had an opportunity to get a release candidate for the next release and it is improved but I don't know that it quite has all the apps I want/need. I'm going to continue using/tracking it though and would gladly switch to it as my primary OS when it is "ready". But I don't know that I'd go out of my way to run it on a Mac and certainly wouldn't spend Apple money to buy a new machine to do so.

Related to the above, there was a comment about using Ubuntu. I've used it (or its variants like gOS and Linux Mint) both in VMs and native and feel it is still ahead of OpenSolaris as a "regular user" desktop, but similarly wouldn't buy Mac hardware to run it.

There was also the comment about the person being required to use Windows or that he worked from Microsoft. Actually could have been considering it was a flight leaving Seattle!

And while I'm on the subject of Mac's, see Michael Cote's writeup on tips for a new Mac user. A good read.

Thursday Jan 17, 2008

links for 2008-1-17

Monday Dec 17, 2007

links for 2007-12-17

Full disclosure: I'm a MacBook Pro user at work but have been a long time Linux user and am in the process of trying out several distributions in Parallels and VMware Fusion VMs on the Mac. More to come on that.

Sunday Oct 21, 2007

GlassFish on Apple's Web-site

Those of you that read my blog know I have been a MacBook Pro user for awhile now and have been running GlassFish and NetBeans and components from Project Open ESB on my machine for awhile.

So, when a co-worker shared with me that GlassFish is available from Apple's Downloads Site it wasn't remarkable that it was available for Mac OS/X but it was still very nice to see the download available directly from Apple.

Friday May 18, 2007

Mac OS X Nits

I've now had my MacBook Pro for a little while now and continue to like it, but I do have a few nits.

The big one is that all the applications have not standardized on the shortcuts for moving the cursor when editing text.

In some apps (Firefox for example, my browser where I'm composing this entry, but Thunderbird too, at least they are consistent!), Apple-left/right arrow results in going to the beginning/end of a line. But in others (NeoOffice for example), the same shortcuts are used for advancing a word backward/forward at a time and fn-left/right arrow is used for the beginning and end of a line (which does nothing in Firefox and Thunderbird). But others still (Adium IM client) use Apple-arrow to switch between chat windows, alt/option-arrow to move a word at a time, and fn-arrow for beginning/end of lines. There are probably more variants and it gets worse if you look at the combinations with up/down arrows.

Now I'm sure most if not all of this is configurable, but why not standardize to make it easier on the user? I hate to say this but with Windows the home/end and ctrl-arrow behavior is pretty much universally consistent for these standard editing shortcuts.

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