Should coupled well with wifi-only iPad. I can see FaceTime being used more on the hypothetically-facetime-enabled iPad2 as well as the iPod Touch.
Furthermore, I can see a slew of in-car applications developed to take advantage of the mobile hot spots. I find it surprising that although Android-based platform has had it enabled for years, but I don’t see any gadgetry/appliance piggy back the connection of the moving hotspot. I speculate the reason being the fragmentation of Android platform. While Android is becoming the majority’s platform for smartphone, a gadgetry developers cannot develop to a unified Android phones, because the hardware interface may differ significant from a Samsung Galaxy S to a Motorola droid. So what we see is that the onus of building hardware gadgets for Androids phone fall upon the each phone’s perspective manufacturer. Evidently in CES this year, you see Motorola trying to create a whole product ecosystem, like laptop dock, multimedia dock, and other peripheral gadgets, under its own name. On the other hands, Apple has an unified hardware interfaces which the third party can design to and therefore allow these developers to be able to viably design, test, and furthermore, market, their product. Yes, ability to marketing is also another driver for a sound ecosystem for the hardware gadgetry. Notice at every tech store, not just the Apple Store, there is a product section for Apple peripheral, which serves an efficient outlet for the product placements. Everyone can find those sections, including your mom and dad. And the labelling on the product, which people look to to answer the question whether a gadget will work or not for an iOS device, is fairly straight forward to understand. So ultimately, these are the customers one would want to go after to truly establish a viable gadget markets. And due to fragmentation of Android, and its subsequent challenges that arise in both technical and marketing aspects, the market for hardware gadget system was unable to form.
That is why, even though Android users have been carrying the ability to carry their hotpots everywhere - effectively everyone is a walking internet network that allows any device to talk to the internet - no one seems to exploit that.
But with iPhone, the ecosystem is already budding. EyeFi has designed a SD card that wirelessly transmit photo to iphone and ipad, using a jail-broken feature. And Consider the number of car manufacturers that are actively integrating their onboard computing system with iOS devices. Now once the hot spot feature become enabled on the iPhone, all the sudden these devices are all connected to the internet. Now imagine that - a truly hyper-connected world.
The lens and the sensor is within the same piece of the body, and body transmits the real-time view finder to a separate display, like a smart phone. This can potentially extend the capability of the the smart phone to deliver top notch photo. Well. It’s worth to keep a watch on it.
*update* It turns out to be fake. Should have caught it at the 31 megapixels claim (!?!?!?). Oh well. Still interesting in concept.
Blame the Shooting on Political Climate is Utterly Silly
So the latest new buzzing on the news wire lately is undoubtedly the tragic shooting of Reps. Gifford of Tuscon, Arizona. Even though I am not an American, from afar I felt the emotional shockwave from seeing such violent happening in such a gruesome fashion.
What shocks me even more is that the political theatre that has come down on the event since it happens. There is a prevalent notion that an escalating tone of violence and intensity has created a political climate that would encourage the extremist to commit such unthinkable crime. Furthermore, some went as far as to imply out the specific Sarah Palin’s campaign poster as well as the Tea Party Rally as being the provocateur of this type of behaviour. While I don’t agree with the ideology of Palin and the Tea Party and even think they lack good tastes in their expression, I think there is a clear line between intense political speech and terrorism. To suggest one is like the other is not only illogical, and unproductive, it is also unconstitutional and damaging to the democracy.
The whole notion is just too speculative. And the TV pundits and the online medium are blowing this way out of proportional. To insinuate that there is an army of lunatics who are ready to act on their call of duty to revolt from Sarah Palin and Tea Party is just outlandish. It reminds me of the days following the Columbine Shooting, in which politicians are pointing to trench coat and Quake as the medium to foster violent behaviour. Again, totally outlandish.
That is why I admire the Mark Kelly, husband of the Rep. Gifford, and Obama for not taking advantage of an already horrible situation. And in my opinion, the real questions people need to ask is why a young man with a troubling symptoms of insanity and mental illness becomes so marginalized and be deprived of help. And why someone like that could get access to automatic weapons. Those are the most directly relevant question but no one is asking that. What a shame.
I learn of the heroism of Dick Winter a few years ago when I watched the HBO mini series “Band of Brothers”, which follows the brave journey of Easy Company, one of the earliest and yet most effective paratrooper company. To put the challenges face the paratrooper in context, imagine you and your comrades are dropped right into the enemy zone, scattered and small in number, and you have to rely on your guts and wits to not only surprise, but complete your mission, in which you are often outnumbered. It’s truly an extraordinary story, and Captain Winter is the leader of such troops. Although I do not know him beyond what is portrayed in the miniseries, I trust this depiction is one the reflect his genuine bravery and honour. And for that, we mourn today for the great loss of this great hero.
Every morning when I went on my routine to brush my teeth, wash my face, and do all the other good stuff over the basin, I pause for moment to look at myself in the mirror and wonder if I can replicate the same person outside of the mirror. I wonder about this because so often the photos of me appears so different from this person standing on front of me. When I look at myself in the mirror, I am staring into the world which you are fully aware and is totally predicable. You wink, the person winks back. You smile, the person smiles back in the totally familiar way. It’s actually a very intimate experience.
So I took up the challenge to liberate the Jason-in-the-mirror from the mirror by means of self-portrait. And this is not the type which you hold your camera out using your arm and point-&-shoot yourself. Since I look to recreate the exact field of view of my own eyes when they are staring into the mirror, I have the tripod hoisting the camera to my exact eye level, and use my 50mm prime lens (about 1.5x of a human’s field of view). To position myself, I stand about 2 times of how far I usually stand on away from the mirror. The results turn out to be interesting. Allow me to introduce to you…the man in the mirror:
Why i think Mac App Store is going to be a success...
Because in essence it initiates the democratization of software access. We are in stone age when it comes to our choices for software. People didn’t want to bother either because they have such difficult time installing software. Over time, people simply forget to take the initiation to install software. These deterrents limit a computer can do for their users therefore makes computer seem like very cold and intimidating dictator: either you live by its rule or it punishes you by crashing and put your life on a complete halt.
But really, people deep inside are curious about what the computer can do for them. If there is a warm and fuzzy way to allow people to explore their curiosity, people will jump in by the flocks. This is evident in the success of the iOS App Store: a very high percentage of the user download apps and use it, a large part of whom are people who never download any piece of software before owning an iPhone, let alone buying it. So the curiosity and the willingness to be assisted by computer in new way are present within every users, not just the tech savvy user but your mom and dad. We just need a platform that allow us to explore our curiosity without worrying about being punished for it.
That is why Mac App Store sets out to provide a venue for people to discover new services and expand how they can use their computer. An anecdotal example could be, I woke up this morning not knowing someone has built an awesome pinball program on mac. Even though I know i like pinball because i used to play it on PC, which comes preinstall with pinball program, i would not have discovered if it wasn’t for the Mac App Store. I checked the “What is Hot Section?” and there is. Although I could have discovered it over Google, that would require me to put “pinball for mac”, which will never occur to me in 100 years.
What Mac App Store is allow people to browse the things their computer can do. All in one place. So if you are curious about that, you have a place to go to to find out what the latest great application is and let the store sell you ideas on how you can evolve the functions of your computer. Like shopping for everything else, we as consumer enjoy a place where we are being pitched good ideas. Like walking in mall, it makes us feel good.
Of course, I would like to emphasize on the word “GOOD”. The software needs to be good too. A store littered with garbage software is no better than not having one at all. So there is a need to carefully curate the quality of all the submission. The rule by which curation is done is often the sore point which leads to controversy. Some people believe in centrally regulated system and some argue that it’s better to let the user base to elect the good software from the bad. Because neither system is perfect, i think there is a fine balance between how much control to exert over the regulation of the app store vs. how much freedom you should give the users to decide. The best balance rests in a philosophical debate on the merits of choosing between central control system and self-organised system.
So where does the idea of “democratization” come from if Apple ultimately dominates the rules? I am actually referring to the the ability to explore and access. The Mac App Store simplifies both of these tasks tremendously for average users. Everyone is now able to tailor their own computer to do the tasks that suit their individual needs. Often when I meet people with iPhone, I ask the question, “what app have you downloaded?” The answer often is highly representative of their tastes and needs and therefore is very individualized. On the other hands, I can guarantee most people on their mac or pc probably perform tasks around the same set of half dozen programs. A half of those half dozen program probably frustrate the hell out of us, but we stick with it because we felt like to pursue other choices simply takes too much effort. I would argue that this predicament is no better than having no choice at all.
Another reason that Mac App Store will democratize is that it gives good application the ability to spread. Drawing from yet another anecdote from iPhone: I recently found about there is a new VOIP app that works very well for international calls. So when I wanted to call my dad, I texted him with the instruction that has a link that take him straight into the iOS app store to the page of the app, he quickly download the app and register an account. Within 10 min, we are making international call over this service that he has not heard of 10min ago. The application just spread itself in a matter of minutes, because there is no technological barrier. Mac App Store removes that same barrier that currently exists on PC/Mac, therefore provides a medium for applications to propagate.
At the end of the day, Mac App Store, or any app store that enables easy access to software, make the computer more customizable, individualized, and more social. It is going to spawn a spur of curiosity in what the computer can do and allows computer user to choose not just the computer, but what it can do. And the exciting thing that only applies to Mac App Store, and didn’t apply to other iOS platforms, is that Mac App Store needs to compete against other App Store. Not just App Store for natives app, but app store for web apps too. They no longer have monopoly to the platform and it would be very interesting to see how company’s practice adapts to its competition. Good news is, consumer will always win.
Interesting.. I hope that it’s not part of their intention to milk the existing blackberry user base for drive Playbook sales. If so, I think it’s a bad move considering the user base of blackberry are moving to users who are decreasingly tech savvy (teenagers who cares nothing more than just bbm) and situated outside north america (where bb sales are strong). These clientele are definitely outside of the target audience for tablet devices, that is, people who are both interested and financially viable.
Like suggested in the previous post, it addresses “WHY” rather than “HOW” and “WHAT”. The tone reminds me of Apple’s FaceTime commercial, although the synchronize piano is a very original. I wonder if the technology can actually achieve this degree of synchronization.
So this is a company that is valuated at 50billion dollar market cap?? I guess amidst the skepticism, it’s a worthwhile to look at the math that justifies it. The site gave the details on how such valuation may be derived.
Benchmark ROI: 9% (historical S&P average, including dividends)
Facebook PE in 5 years: 25 (the same as Google)
Facebook profit margin in 5 years: 20% (Between Google and mature media companies; same as Apple)
Now, if we assume investors would be happy with anything over 9% return on their investment, Facebook would have to be worth a bit more than $70 billion in five years. Using a P/E of 25 and 20% profit margins, that would imply earnings of 2.8 billion and revenues of $14 billion. Even compared to mature media companies, those do not seem excessively high.
I am fine with most of the assumptions. but the assumption where the revenue would continue to double seem a little out of wack to me. Since the main revenue stream of Facebook is ad income, it guess it wouldn’t hurt to compare it to the early days of Google…
A video documentary posted on the founder of thesatorialist.blogspot.com. It goes behind the scene how he works on the street.
I really enjoy the Satorialist’s approach to street photography. It is him reacting to a spontaneous moment on the street, and capture exactly what he felt. It’s a very romanticized view of photography, and it is a great one.
Started by a Berlin artist, the idea of secret sharing in the back alley manifests itself in the digital form. Around the world, the USB sticks are planted into the back side of the buildings. Information can read or written to on the USB stick by its latest finder. Interesting and fun!