You Go Cheap; You Get Cheap

I recently bought an external drive for my MacBook Air and ran into some issues not with the new drive but a drive I purchased 8 months ago. The vendor was not the cheapest but with experience has proven to be the most value. Why? I was able to call for an RMA, get an advance replacement for the older drive sent to me, and send me software that I didn’t even buy. I had made an equivalent purchase to a bundle that included the software. They agreed to mail it to me at no cost. This kind of treatment is well worth the couple of bucks I pay more per item. That “cost” provides me value far in excess of what I paid.

Journalists Need a Boot in the…

Daring Fireball: Several Asinine and/or Risky Ideas Regarding Apple’s Strategy That Boot Camp Does Not Portend:

“Regarding anything related to Apple’s strategy going forward, it’s essential to keep in mind just how Apple functions as a business. It’s not very complicated. Apple now has two fundamental businesses: selling Macintosh computers and selling iPods. And I think if you wanted to, you could argue that this is really one core business, selling computers, and that some of their computers are Macs and some are iPods.”

Exactly right. Boot camp will pit Apple against Dell and its ilk not Wintel, since both elements of that non-word are Apple partners: Microsoft and Intel.

Ultimate Switcher Mac?

I read an article on eWeek about the Mac mini being the ultimate “switcher” mac because all you need is a KVM switch and you are done. No muss. No fuss. At first, I thought that was a bullshiznit argument, but on second thought, it makes a helluva lot of sense.

First, the thing will take up no space. Second, Macs shine when used over time. My father-in-law has a whole Windows 2000 network built by yours truly, but he is switching whole hog to the Mac on the basis of using his iMac G4 for less than a year. Laptop for him and his wife with the desktop as the new server.

Clearly this is something Apple should push. Given the growth in the computer user market, even a 1% market share up tick would be hugely lucrative for Apple.

Apple’s mini Shuffle

Apple – Mac mini and iPod Shuffle are new editions of the hardware lineup that even cheapskates can love. Simple. Elegant. Mac.

Microsoft Out of Sync

I’m greatly disappointed by the incredibly slow pace that Microsoft’s Macintosh division is developing updates to its handheld sync conduit for the newer Palm PIM applications. Obviously PalmOne or PalmSource or whoever updated these apps to conform to Outlook/Entourage’s calendar, contacts, and task formats. We, loyal Microsoft customers all, should not have to deal with substandard support for so long? My goodness, this isn’t rocket science. Even more ridiculous is the fact that Microsoft supports the Palm and not the PocketPC!

I think it would be wise and profitable for Microsoft to simply license the database API to as many vendors as those who wish to pay. I suspect they’ve already done this with the PocketMac folken. Mark/space would be the obvious next candidate. It’s not MBD’s core business, but it sure makes Office more valuable. Being able to sync with a multitude of handheld devices actually enhances their ability to charge for Office!

C’mon Microsoft. Get In Sync.

It Begins…M$ vs. Apple…Yeah Right! – Apple Slams Music Service From Rival Microsoft
This article is a masterpiece of PR. It has lessons for us all.
First, where is the so called slamming of Microsoft? Basically this is to read the article which basically says, “M$ opened it’s music store today.” So what? We all knew they would. Apple, for its part, was a bit belittling but there were no Zell Miller-esque rants or slams.
Second, Apple in its wisdom tried to make this a non-event, which is exactly what it is. But never fear boys and girls! Apple is watching closely and will provide stiff competition. It’s like Bush “not thinking” about Osama bin Laden. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Apple’s Squeeze Play Part II

Apple announced the new iMac G5 today and true to Apple form it’s sleek and “enchanting” and has the predictable “wow factor” that boost sales and to delight of Apple’s investors, the share price.
This cycle is not new and this is why the market always corrects itself after a new product launch. Apple is a product company and thus must innovate to be true to its brand and simply survive. The media and the usual pundits (talking heads really) conveniently forget this, perennially predict the company’s demise, and then, wonder of wonders, a new product launch arrives and they claim that Apple is once again on the road to riches. You’d think somebody would have caught on after almost 3 decades!
Actually, the financial industry has. Invest when the demise predictions invariably come and sell when the going gets good. Make a tidy profit.

Weapon of Choice

My Apple – PowerBook G4 15-inch laptop is my weapon of choice for computing for one simple reason: it gets out of my way and let’s me accomplish what I want to do. Unlike the Windoze machines I use or have used in the past, descriptions like “plug-n-play” and “it just works” actually apply.

My Apple – PowerBook G4 15-inch laptop is my weapon of choice for computing for one simple reason: it gets out of my way and let’s me accomplish what I want to do. Unlike the Windoze machines I use or have used in the past, descriptions like “plug-n-play” and “it just works” actually apply.
The best part is how it takes care of the mundane stuff for me while allowing me to concentrate on details I care about. If I want Apache to launch, I can do it in as little as 4 clicks of my mouse. Now, that’s easy computing! I have the option dig into the Unix minutae to configure the web server and have done so when necessary. This is power of the platform: I’m not forced to use “wizards” that always seem to complicate rather than simplify or edit text files and memorize countless options.
Apple is that company that makes “Insanely Great” products, which is great for us users. Unfortunately, for Apple as a business this is not the standard by which profitability is guaranteed. In the business world, he who markets best gets to laugh…period.
These days, it’s still a matter of ideology. There are people who will run Windows no matter what pain they must endure and there are people who think that Apple will save the world. The more pragmatic of us, simply use the the tool that best suits our needs and tastes…in that order.