Trip the Light Fandango

October 15th, 2014 · General Detritus

So. There’s an Apple event tomorrow. Rumor has it that there will be some mention of iPads.

I still have a first edition iPad. I bought it right after Jas brought hers over on a visit from college. I still want a new one. I’ll get there one of these days.

Anyway, the big event is tomorrow. The slogan is, “It’s been way too long.” I don’t know what’s been way too long about announcing an update to the iPad. Seriously. WTF?

I’ve tried and tried to come up with something that’s been way too long. Nothing useful springs to mind.

  • It’s been way too long since the weekend.
  • It’s been way too long since somebody else was paying the bills and buying the groceries.
  • It’s been way too long since Ronald Reagan was president.
  • It’s been way too long since there was a TV series worth watching (M*A*S*H).
  • It’s been way too long since there was a really great movie (The Outlaw Josey Wales).
  • It’s been way too long since I started this idiotic list.

Possible Apple is going to introduce something really, really new. I’ve seen the notion of an Apple branded television set bounced around.

Maybe Apple is going to get back into the printer business. That would be cool. An Apple branded printer probably wouldn’t piss me off as much as the other brands I’ve used. And I’ve used them all. Brother, Epson, Canon, H-P, you name it. Every one of them could suck a baseball inside out.

You probably heard about all the stuff going on with GTAT, the company that was supposed to make sapphire stuff for Apple. They’re going bankrupt. It’s all Apple’s fault. The contract is onerous and burdensome or something like that. It seems GTAT signed a contract saying they would make stuff, and now they can’t make the stuff, and Apple still expects them to make the stuff before they’ll pay them. Bastards.

That’s like going to the store for a loaf of bread to find that the store doesn’t have any bread, and can’t make enough to meet your needs anyway. The store files bankruptcy and blames you for not paying for bread. You asshole.

Of course, the store owners sell a bunch of the store’s stock after the share price goes up based on your agreement to buy a shit-ton of bread.

And then you don’t pay for the bread they can’t make and destroy their business. You bastard.


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It’s Been Way Too Long

October 11th, 2014 · General Detritus

Last night it finally happened. I have met the people who make Rip Ragged a workable site. Digital Cowboy, who gives me the server space, and Baxtrice, who designed my site. I make it obscure and lonely by my myself.

Also present were DC’s two teenage daughters, who were entirely too polite and pleasant to be teenagers in 2014. I worry about them.

We had dinner and conversation at a Texas steakhouse, followed by bourbon and stogies and more conversation on the patio of the Texas steakhouse until the employees of the Texas steakhouse were more than ready for us to find someplace else to be.

All in all, a lovely evening.

We’re gonna have to do that again sometime. Only next time we go to a Seattle eatery. I know a place with 150 different taps and some hellacious hamburgers.

Tesla just pulled an Apple. Elon musk unveiled a new upgrade to the Model S. It flies, travels underwater to 12 atmospheres, changes color to blend into the local scenery, goes from 0-60 in 3.2 seconds, and has every song ever recorded by Pink Floyd, including Be Careful with that Axe Eugene, pre-installed.

The results were identical to an Apple product announcement.

  • The stock price went down.
  • I want one.

I got to go to an Apple store in Dallas, yesterday. Wifey-poo has an iPhone 6. I’ll get one later. Jas has an iPhone 6 Plus. She showed it off at breakfast, and asked if I was jealous. I said no. I already have a piano.

It looks like talking into a floor tile. A nice floor tile, but a big square of linoleum next to your head, just the same.

Nah.

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Another Event is Coming

October 8th, 2014 · General Detritus

The buzzword from Apple on the event is, “It’s been way too long.”

As is normal with the rumor mill, people are all over the innertubes trying to figure out exactly what the hell Apple means by “It’s been way too long.”

Based on that slogan alone, we can guess with relative certainty that Apple is not going to announce a marital aid.

I’ll bet everything in my money clip right now on that assertion.

It’s been way too long since uninformed speculation predicted an Apple-branded television set.

More than one uninformed speculator is predicting Apple will introduce an TV. There has also been a rumor floating around about an TV App Store.

Bad news: The TV will not have all the motion sensors in it you’ve gotten used to. Doodlejump will not work right. Also, it won’t include Apple Pay for use at your favorite stores.

It’s been way too long:

  • since Apple updated the Mac Mini.
  • since Apple updated the Mac Pro
  • since Apple made the Mac Book Air Jordan thinner
  • since Apple obsoleted a technology like Firewire and BluRay
  • since Apple introduced a brand new disruptive piece of hardware
  • since Apple opened an Apple Store in Richland, Washington
  • since the punditocracy started predicting an Apple-branded TV
  • since Apple introduced a successor to the iPod Classic
  • since I’ve been to Texas

My prediction is that Apple is going to announce that Tim Cook and the entire executive staff are changing their hairstyles. Bunch of hippies.

 

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We Know Who You Are. We Saw What You Did.

October 3rd, 2014 · General Detritus

It has been almost a month since Apple introduced anything new.

Apple is doomed.

Doomed.

I have been reading on Macalope and Daring Fireball that Apple has committed a major faux pas by announcing they’re going to protect the privacy of users. Apple stated that they have it all fixed up that they can’t get access to your private electronic conversations even if they wanted to, and that a warrant from Big Brother can’t change that.

Some chuckleheads in the government and in police departments are of a mind that if you don’t want your private conversations to be read by strangers in authority, you must be a pedophile, a terrorist, a homophobe, a racist, a treasonous traitor, a sexist, an accountant , a coward, an alcoholic, a loser, a wife-beater, and an Oakland Raiders fan. If you don’t have anything to hide, there’s no reason to not want The Authorities to monitor every word you say electronically.

Frankly, I don’t get why this was ever even a discussion. All this time, in my opinion, the lack of such encryption has been an unfixed bug that The Man has been using in stark contrast to the requirements of the Magna Carta, para. 31, Which states, “Nec nos nec ballivi nostri capiemus alienum boscum ad castra vel alia agenda nostra, nisi per voluntatem ipsius cujus boscus ille fuerit.” Which in English means, “That’s my stuff. You can’t have it unless I tell you you can have it.”

DOOMED.

Just in case you forgot about Suzi Quatro…

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Horrors

September 26th, 2014 · General Detritus

Apple released iOS 8.0.1. It had bugs. In fact, it had some really nasty bugs. Many people who downloaded the upgrade developed a facial tic, a loss of balance, interrupted mail service, an allergic reaction to fava beans, and an unexplained rash on their upper thighs.

Apple quickly withdrew the update, and posted a workaround for the bugs. Apple has since released iOS 8.0.2. You may experience mild nausea when watching The View. Those two facts may not be related.

The iPhone 6 and 6 Plus will bend. This is particularly disturbing to people who think inconvenient laws of physics should be repealed.

If you have any understanding of material structure and strength you’ll know that when stressed, materials that bend are considered stronger than materials that do not. Materials that do not bend under stress break.

Let me put this another way ––

If you put an expensive piece of electronics in the back pocket of a tight pair of jeans and then sit on it, two things are probably true, and one thing is certainly true.

Probably: You hope the device still works as designed after you’ve sat on it repeatedly in the back pocket of your tight jeans.

Probably: The device will be more likely to work as designed after bending than it would be after breaking.

Certainly: You have proven you are stupid enough to put an expensive piece of electronics in the back pocket of a tight pair of jeans and sit on it.

Shellshock is in the wild. It’s an exploit of a Unix shell (BASH) that was recently discovered by people who really, really need Mac users to start to give a shit about computer security, because, let’s face it, we smug bastards just sitting here without any anti-virus software and without having to monitor our firewalls continuously or install updates and patches every couple of weeks for the latest attack vectors are pissing them off.

I just found out (surprise, surprise) that this particular attack only works if you’re an advanced Unix user and you have your OS X system set up to allow you to do advanced Unix stuff.

When I first got OS X on my G4 Sawtooth tower in, like, 2002, I bought Unix for Dummies. It proved to be an apt book title. After a few hours of playing with Unix on my fine, shiny Mac, I rendered it so completely useless that when I took it to the shop, they said they almost had to reformat my hard drive. So advanced Unix is not something I’ll be doing.

I’m off the hook.

Whew. I was thinking about getting worried eventually, because, well, damn.

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Rumors (or Rumours, if you’re a Stevie Nicks Fan)

September 20th, 2014 · General Detritus

Remember the event? You know, the September 9th thingy where Apple introduced the iPhone 6, the iPhone 6 Plus, and the  Watch. You remember, right?

That wasn’t enough.

There are new rumors that Apple is going to have another event in October. This should include the formal rollout of Yosemite Sam, and that would be enough for me. Continuity and handing off work from my mobile device to my desktop or laptop will be awesome. I don’t know if I can do it yet with the Yosemite Sam Beta release, and I haven’t tried. But still, it sounds pretty cool.

But Apple has something in the works that hasn’t even made the rumor mill yet. Something so secret the punditbots haven’t guessed it yet.

My favorite Apple rumor writer is over on Macworld, and, while Macworld pisses me off, I can still post a link for John Moltz. Also, even though Macworld pisses me off (or maybe for the same reasons that it pisses me off), they’re ending their print run and laying off a bunch of staff. Now they’re going to only be on the innertubes. That sucks.

Mr. Moltz has done a nice job of assessing the cream of the current crop of Apple rumors, and it’s worth a read.

He has graded the rumors based on their possible relation to reality. My assessment of rumors is based solely on their entertainment value. Few Apple rumors are as valid as a coin toss in a tornado. An enjoyable Apple rumor contains essential elements. It presents a well thought out device or service. It supports its veracity with quotes and opinions from people and sources that are usually wrong. Unnamed insiders is a cop out. It exhibits poor quality photographs and questionable screen shots as evidence. The real upper crust of Apple rumors specify exactly what the device or service will be or do, with numbers, data, statistics, pixel by pixel breakdown of the screen size, new processor names and model numbers, built-in memory, and expected bandwidth of the network connection.

All that makes for a pretty fun rumor. Meaningless, but fun. For a real coupe de grass, though, an excellent rumor includes a deadline for Apple to produce the rumored product or service with at least the predicted specifications. Failure means doom. DOOM. Apple cannot survive unless the writer’s vision is fulfilled or exceeded.

I don’t report on specific rumors from specific writers very often because all that bouncing back and forth from my dashboard to their pages is just too much work. Also, putting in links is a lot of extra mouse clicks and keyboard commands. And for the most part, they’re idiots. So, I’ll just continue to make fun of the internet in general.

It’s worth noting, though, that there’s a rumor that Apple is working on another version of the Watch already, so that if you buy one now it will eventually be obsolete. Thank goodness they don’t do that with all their other stuff.

One of my all-time favorite Bob Seger songs.

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