Shocking news for fruity Apple fans – CEO Steve Jobs is planning on doing the absolutely unthinkable – he will quit Apple!
The revelation comes after Steve Jobs presented the new MacBooks, MacBook Pros, and an updated MacBook Air yesterday at an event. He told the audience present that the company is more than himself.
"Hey, look, Apple is more than Steve.” He said, “These are The Guys, the Goodfellas, the A-Team. They share the same vision I have. And they are going to push the company forward when I change my office chair for a hammock and caipirinhas on my private beach in Hawaii".
That was a downer of a statement from Steve Jobs, who generally is the star of the show. This was clearly a sign that he has transferred some money to a resort where he will spend the rest of his life in peace and tranquility, away from the bustling market.
Steve Jobs NEVER puts himself after Apple, as selfish as that may sound, it was a good thing because Billions of people across the world love and worship him for his genius. The statement he made only strengthens belief that he is going to quit and that there are other people in Apple.
In case you didn’t already know, Steve Jobs hasn’t quite been keeping well lately. Numerous reports of his health concerns have floated across tabloids, although Steve himself denied them. We know that Steve Jobs will remain with Apple the way Bill Gates will always stay with Microsoft, but Apple won’t be the same without its fruity guru.
Shocking news for fruity Apple fans – CEO Steve Jobs is planning on doing the absolutely unthinkable – he will quit Apple!
Now All Vista Users Might not have felt the heat while using Vista but after Grabbing Windows 7 They surely will. Here Is windows , soon to be released Operating System , Windows 7.
Unlike it's predecessor , Windows Vista , which received Great changes from Windows XP version , Windows 7 has not changed so much.
It has Got around Three versions which are being tested currently, Milestone 1 , Milestone 2, Milestone 3 and some others are coming up now.
Windows 7 will be available for 32 bit and 64 bit but the server edition will only be available for 64 bit.
It is not much different from Windows Vista , (as many claim) but until we use it we cant blindly believe it.
The release date , according to internetnews.com is set to be June 3, 2009 , But some of the microsoft representatives have said different dates but I am sure it will release somewhere in mid 2009.
Milestone 2 of Windows 7 has a different taskbar than found in Windows Vista, with, among other features, sections divided into different colors.
Features like support for multiple heterogeneous graphics cards has been added. A all new Windows Media Center has also been added. It might also have the Ribbon interface , which is the best part of it, i.e it has all new design for paint and wordpad and other Microsoft designed Softwares like Word.
In the demonstration of Windows 7 at D6, the operating system featured multi-touch , Just like your Hp touchsmart PC (somewhat)
The price still remains a secret.
Few Leaked Screenshots -
The highly anticipated Apple Notebook Event was held on Tuesday, October 14 2008. Apple CEO Steve Jobs introduced us to the new Macbooks. We also see "The Brick" process, Apple's new production technique for notebooks. I would elaborate more on the event, but I think it would be better if you watched it yourself. Enjoy..
Dual boot OS not just for Macbook but for iPhone too. Here is a video from myPhone2008 courtesy of Norwegian application developer. Apple iPhone running Windows Mobile.
Apple has just sent out invites to a special media event on Apple's campus for October 14. The invite reads, "The spotlight turns to notebooks," and has a ray of light shining over the back of an unidentified Apple notebook.
The invite-only event will be taking place at Apple's Town Hall in Cupertino on October 14, 10am Pacific Time.
As you are likely aware, October 14 has been widely rumored for several weeks now as the official date for Apple's update to the MacBook and MacBook pro line. Some of us had our doubts (myself included) that such an update would end up being announced during an Apple event, but Apple has come through once again.What can we expect from this event? No one knows for sure, but supposedly leaked photos have been spreading across the web as of late. Ars will be there (with photos this time!) covering it live on our front page.
Some Apple retailers in the United States have been given price lists for a new Apple laptop line, and there’s a big surprise: an $800 laptop. The information comes from a source we would categorize as reliable, would have access to such information, and who has been accurate in the past.
According to the source, Apple retail stores have been given price sheets that list 12 price points for the new range, with prices between $800-$3100. Current lines only have 8 price points, 3 Macbooks starting at $1099, 3 Macbook Pros and 2 Macbook Airs. According to the source, retail outlets usually get the price lists 10 days before products hit the market. Technical specs for the new laptops were not included on the price sheet.
An $800 laptop would be the first sub-$1000 laptop offered by Apple, and would signal a shift from Cupertino to target a broader range of price sensitive customers for the first time. Whether this laptop is a sub-laptop or ultra-portable we simply don’t know, it could be Apple more aggressively pricing their new Macbook range, or it could be a completely new laptop altogether, presumably utilizing the much discussed “Apple Brick” manufacturing process (pic above). What we do know is that there will be four additional price points, so unless the updated versions of existing lines are offered with more options, we would presume that Apple may actually launch an entirely new laptop.
Microsoft finally chose the codename for its Cloud OS Platform. Strata it is then. That's at least what the sessions page of Microsoft's Forthcoming Professional Developers Conference page pointed to earlier yesterday.
The page, that has now been modified and no longer shows any Strata-related info, has been captured by fellow blogger Kit Ong's and shows eight sessions dedicated to Windows Strata.
Microsoft though appears to be jumping "heavily" on the Cloud computing bandwagon, in a similar fashion to the u turn Bill Gate engineered back in the 1990's when it brought Internet (known then as the Infobahn) to Windows 95. No less than 34 sessions will be dedicated to Cloud computing.
Steve Ballmer has already acknowledged that Microsoft needs a cloud based operating system - fast - in order to catch up with the likes of Amazon or Google, both of whom have already deployed large scale Software-as-a-service implementations.
Not that Microsoft did not think about it before, it was just too early. They did speak about a Hailstorm project (which also comes from Clouds) back in 2001, described as a project to "make MSN-hosted user data available to the same users at non-Microsoft web site" - a bit like OpenSocial - and Lightning (which again, comes from Clouds), the original codename for Microsoft's Common Language Runtime.
Microsoft's PDC will debut on the 27th October in Los Angeles.
From Wikipedia, A stratus cloud (Plural = Strata) is a cloud belonging to a class characterized by horizontal layering with a uniform base, as opposed to convective clouds that are as tall or taller than wide (these are termed cumulus clouds). (ed: It also refers to geological layers as well)
Microsoft lab rats have been in the dungeon cooking up some new software and technology and the results are very cool. I think the innovative side of Microsoft is starting to come out, about time, since Apple and Google have been been in the forefront of creativity lately.
What is Microsoft Touchless?
A multitouch software from Microsoft Office Labs that uses a regular Web camera and everyday objects as input. Touchless enables touch without touching by using a webcam to track color based markers. Like Microsoft Surface and Touchwall, the Touchless software makes it possible to create applications that turn hand gestures and physical objects into an input device like a mouse.Touchless includes two parts:
Touchless Demo is an open source application that anyone with a webcam can use to experience multi-touch, no geekiness required. There are 4 fun demos: Snake - where you control a snake with a marker, Defender - up to 4 player version of a pong-like game, Map - where you can rotate, zoom, and move a map using 2 markers, and Draw - the marker is used to guess what.... draw!
Touchless SDK is an open source SDK that enables developers to create multi-touch based applications using a webcam for input, geekiness recommended.
This project is an Office Labs community project, which means a Microsoft employee worked on this in their spare time. It is also an open source project, which means that anyone can view, use, and contribute to the code.
Jerry Seinfeld's high cost ads for Microsoft may have helped get people talking about the company again, but a new low tech conference commercial making the rounds on the web is actually winning positive commentary for one thing that the Seinfeld and "I'm a PC" ads lacked: self-deprecation.
The Internet ad features fictional ad execs in a pitch meeting and an odd little boy band. Meant to publicize the upcoming Professional Developers Conference where Microsoft will give away 160GB hard drives loaded with Windows 7, it has been circling around without any prime-time buys.
While the ad features some of the institutionalized strangeness that seems to spark decisions at Microsoft, it boasts a song that will have Windows 7 stuck in my head for the rest of the morning. Also, it is funny, even if it takes until the end to learn that the makers of the ad are in on the joke.
In a candid and slightly bizarre interview, Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak has admitted that the iPod’s popularity could be on the decline, and that Apple’s future may actually be in watches.
In an interview that is bound to have Apple’s PR team up in arms, Wozniak explained to theTelegraph about his fears that the iPod has run its course: “The iPod has sort of lived a long life at number one.
“If you look back to transistor radios and Walkmans, they kind of die out after a while.
“It’s kind of like everyone has got one or two or three. You get to a point when they are on display everywhere, they get real cheap and they are not selling as much.”
And it’s not just the iPod that gets the death-knell treatment, as Wozniak believes that in these credit-crunching days, the whole computer industry should put the brakes on, saying that: “For 20 years we have been in this replacement and upgrade market.
“It is very easy to postpone that when there are financial irregularities.”
Perhaps most interesting of all, however, was what Wozniak thought may be in the pipeline for future Apple products.
Although he admitted that nobody, not even Steve Jobs, knows what the future holds for the company, he did hint that Jobs let slip that Apple could well be investing in the humble watch, called, unsurprisingly, the ‘iWatch’.
With no other details than Woza’s words, it’s hard to speculate too much, but the idea that Apple may try and revitalise the watch market is a very interesting prospect indeed.
With less than six days to go before Tuesday, October 14th and not a word from Apple, chances of a much-rumored media event on that day to introduce new Mac notebook offerings is growing slim.
A lot of emphasis has been placed on next Tuesday as the day Apple might summon the media to another special event ever since Daring Fireball author John Gruber predicted in passing that October 14th would serve as a launch pad for the company’s next-generation notebook offerings.
AppleInsider say that while the prediction remains sound and introductions on that date remain possible, history would suggest that the window of opportunity for Apple to do so in a media-filled forum is rapidly closing. Taking a historical look back at Apple’s surprise media events (below) reveals that only once in the last four years has the company issued invites to the media less than a week before the event was scheduled to take place.
That one exception took place in October of 2005, when Apple gave a select few in the media a five day notice about a special East Coast gathering in New York City that saw the unveiling of several professional Macs, as well as the the first version of the Aperture post production photography software. In all other cases, the company offered between 7 and 9 days notice (and in one case nearly a month’s notice).
The window of opportunity is not completely closed, however. Several scenarios for an announcement next week still remain. The company could simply provide reduced notice of an event next Tuesday or issue invites today for an event on Wednesday. Alternatively, it could elect to introduce redesigned MacBook and MacBook Pros next week without a formal presentation.
Apple has defied expectations of a special media event at least once in the past. For example, it introduced the first 13-inch MacBook - complete with a fresh industrial design - in May of 2006 with little fanfare, posting the announcement to its website alongside a standard press release.
Should Apple fail to introduce new notebooks next week, it would seemingly be in a race against the clock with the holiday shopping season rapidly approaching. The company would have approximately five weeks to introduce new models, fill pent-up demand, enter into a supply and demand equilibrium, and fill inventories around the world before the post Thanksgiving shopping bonanza kicks into play.
This video is worth watching, it was done by Dennis Lui, a young director (dennisaliu.com), on a Mac. I was extremely impress after seeing this, very good work. The actress in the video is Larkin Clark, and the song is "Again & Again" by the Bird & the Bee.
Last year, Microsoft focused its efforts on overhauling the Zune's hardware and public image.
This year, Microsoft has turned its attention to improving the Zune firmware and desktop software, while updating the storage capacity and pricing of new models to stay competitive.
The design of the Zune 120 is almost entirely unchanged from the Zune 80 we reviewed last year. The back of the Zune is now black instead of silver and the face of the player is covered with a glossy plastic that, although pretty, is more prone to smudges and scratches than the metal finish on last year's model.
We're happy to see that the increase in the Zune's hard-drive capacity doesn't translate into a thicker design. The Zune 120 measures the same 4.3 inches high by 2.4 inches wide by 0.5 inch deep as the Zune 80. Also, no changes have been made to the Zune's navigation controls, headphone jack, hold switch, dock connection, and 3.2-inch glass-covered LCD.
Considering Apple's strategy of altering its iPod design every fall (for better or for worse), it's a little unnerving to see the Zune's hardware design at a standstill. The upshot of the Zune's lack of design tinkering is that it maintains the product's compatibility with the handful of accessories designed for the player.
The bulk of the third-generation Zune's improvements are found by flicking through its main menu. New menu items for Games and Marketplace have been added alongside existing selections for Music, Videos, Pictures, Social, Radio, Podcasts, and Settings.
The Zune's primary purpose as a high-quality portable music player hasn't changed. If anything, the enhancements offered by the third-generation firmware have bolstered the unique music-discovery and sharing features that have differentiated the Zune from the very beginning.
One of the more notable new features on the Zune is a Marketplace selection in the main menu that allows you to browse, preview, and download music directly from Microsoft's Zune Marketplace online store.
Within the Marketplace submenu you can choose between browsing Top Songs, Top Albums, and New Releases, or search for specific music by keying in a few letters. Songs can be previewed for 30 seconds with the option to add them to your virtual cart or purchase and download immediately.
By signing up for Microsoft's Zune Pass music-subscription service (a free 14-day trial is available), you can download unlimited music to your Zune for a flat fee of $15 a month. Otherwise, you'll need to purchase songs a la carte by setting up a payment account in the Zune desktop software.
Your Zune needs to be connected to a Wi-Fi hot spot in order to take advantage of the Marketplace feature. Fortunately, Microsoft has improved the Zune's ability to step through public Wi-Fi hot spots, and it's even struck a deal with fast-food giant McDonald's to have the Zune supported by the Wayport Wi-Fi hot spots found in many McDonald's restaurants.
If your local Wi-Fi requires you to enter a password, you can enter it manually using the Zunepad. The Zune will remember and associate your Wi-Fi passwords so that you'll only need to enter them once.
The Zune already had one of the best FM-radio tuners available on an MP3 player, including support for detailed station and song information by way of the Radio Broadcast Data System (RBDS). With the third-generation Zune, Microsoft has taken the RBDS-enhanced FM radio even further, by allowing users to tag the songs they hear so they can download them later.
The radio-tagging feature only works with FM-radio stations that broadcast artist and song information over RBDS (we found five compatible stations in San Francisco). Tagged songs are added to your Zune shopping cart, just as songs added using the Marketplace feature are, and can be downloaded directly to your Zune over Wi-Fi or previewed and purchased using the Zune desktop software.
The radio-tagging feature is fun to use, but in our experience, the stations that were compatible with RBDS were typically mainstream radio outlets with a limited amount of new music in rotation. Still, we're happy to see Zune giving users as many ways as possible to discover and acquire new music.
The addition of games for the Zune helps keep the device competitive against the iPod, but it doesn't compare with the quality of games we're seeing for the iPod Touch. Two games, Hexic and Texas Hold 'Em, are included with the Version 3.0 Zune firmware, with new games soon to come for the Zune Marketplace.
The audio, video, and photo features of the Zune are largely unchanged from the previous generation--which isn't a bad thing, really. The Zune's music player supports MP3, WMA, protected-WMA (Zune Marketplace only), WMA Lossless, AAC, and Audible audio file formats.
The inclusion of the high-fidelity WMA Lossless music format on a high-capacity player like the 120GB Zune should make more than a few audio purists very pleased, and the continued support for AAC opens the door for iPod converts (although DRM-protected iTunes purchases are still unsupported). Audiobook enthusiasts should be happy to see a new gadget for taking their Audible and OverDrive audiobooks on the go.
The Zune supports WMV, MPEG-4, and H.264 video formats natively at a DVD-quality 30fps frame rate. Windows Media Center users will be happy to know that the Zune also imports DVR-MS recorded-video content. Although the Zune's screen displays at a 320x240 resolution, video files stored on the Zune can be as large as 720x480 and played at full resolution through the composite-video output built into the Zune's headphone jack.
An optional Zune AV dock can output video using a higher quality component cable. Unlike the iPod, the Zune's built-in video output mirrors its onscreen display, which means that all of the Zune's features (including menus) can display on your TV.
Selecting the Social feature from the Zune's main menu gives you a window onto your friends' (or total strangers') listening habits. Within the Social menu, you have an Inbox for messages and friend requests between Zune users, a Friends tab displaying any current Zune users you've befriended through Microsoft's Zune Social network, and a Nearby tab that detects the Wi-Fi signal of other Zune's in physical proximity to you.
You can dig deeper into the Social to preview and purchase the recent or favorite songs of people in your network, piggybacking on your friend's music tastes the same way you might with an online service such as iLike or Last.fm.
We're all in favor of getting music recommendations from friends, however, the slow adoption of the Zune means that your actual friends are nowhere to be found on the Zune Social, requiring you to befriend Zune-using strangers in an effort to make the Social feature feel useful. Having used the Zune Social for the past year, however, the pseudo-friends forged in the Social have routinely provided some surprisingly good music recommendations.
If you're a fan of audio and video podcasts, the Zune is one of the only alternatives to the iPod that provides integrated, hassle-free management of your podcast feeds. Like the iPod, the Zune's closed software and hardware ecosystem is able to automatically download new podcasts, load them onto your Zune, and clear out the old content.
The Zune desktop software allows you to browse, search for, and subscribe to podcasts within the Marketplace directory, or paste in the direct link for the feed. Podcast playback on the Zune supports autoresume, episode information, and the ability to unsubscribe from podcasts directly from the playback screen.
Finally, if you're a Zune Pass music subscriber, Microsoft has added a new feature called Channels that offers a podcast-like automatic rotation of new music playlists for your Zune. Channels are sorted by genre, affiliation (Grand Ole Opry, Fader Magazine), or type (Billboard Top 20), and content is updated weekly.
If you don't hold a Zune Pass subscription, you can still subscribe to Channels and hear 30-second song previews of any of the music included on the playlist, with the option to purchase tracks a la carte. If you've been waiting to bite the bullet on a Zune Pass until it seems like a better value, Channels offers an appealing way to inject new music onto your Zune every week without you having to lift a finger.
Zune desktop software
It wasn't pretty when Microsoft overhauled its desktop software alongside the release of last year's Zune. Thankfully, the upgrade to Version 3.0 has brought nothing but improvements and stability to the Zune's desktop client.
The software runs noticeably faster on our old Windows XP machine and includes menu settings that allow you to throttle the software's graphic performance to match the capabilities of your computer.
The latest software hasn't made any radical visual changes, but there are a few subtle enhancements. The software's background image is now white (goodbye pink swirls); there's a new Picks tab under Marketplace with personalized recommendations; your Zune Social card has now been integrated better; and the Now Playing screen offers an enhanced view with tastefully treated artist photos that float and fade like a custom screensaver.
The most interesting new feature included on the Zune 3.0 desktop software is a Mixview pane that graphically represents the currently playing song in relation to similar artists, songs, and top listeners. Using Mixview, you can explore the connections between artists, preview similar songs, and acquaint yourself with other Zune users, in a way that is much more visually engaging than the storefront design that permeates iTunes and Zune Marketplace.
The Zune software is far from perfect, however, and still lacks the fine-grain control that users can find in iTunes, Windows Media Player, and Winamp. If you're a power user, yearning to outfit your metatags with lyric data or import your FLAC music files, the Zune software isn't the place for you.
Unfortunately, the Zune hardware is only compatible with Zune's own desktop software, so if you can't stand the software's deliberately vanilla approach to music organization then you may want to consider another MP3 player.
The Zune's audio, video, and battery performance haven't budged since last year's model. Microsoft rates the Zune 120 at around 30 hours of audio playback and 4 hours of video. When our CNET Labs tested the Zune 80 last year, they found the numbers for video to be spot-on, but audio playback came in at 22 hours with Wi-Fi off, and 18.5 with Wi-Fi on. We'll have our Labs test the Zune 120 to see if there have been any changes in battery performance and we'll update this review with the results.
Despite its lack of EQ controls, the Zune 120 sounds amazing over a good pair of headphones. Unfortunately, most users won't hear the difference now that Microsoft decided not to bundle its quality in-ear headphones with the player. Instead, the Zune 120 box includes an attractive, yet average-sounding, pair of earbuds and the higher quality in-ear headphones are sold separately.
Video quality on the Zune 120 is unchanged, however, it's still one of the best video podcast players you can buy (the iPod Touch, with its larger screen and video-zooming feature, is even better).
Zune vs. iPod
The Zune still has a hard road ahead if it wants to catch up to the iPod. Microsoft is doing an admirable job, however, of carving out a niche of music fanatics who value the Zune's emphasis on music discovery and subscription-music gluttony. When it comes to high-capacity MP3 players, Apple and Microsoft are the two best options available, offering comparable features, file support, and audio quality.
But, unless you have a grudge against Apple or are tempted by the Zune's subscription-music service, the iPod's superior battery life and accessory options make it a better option for most users.
'No reason' to think others couldn't carry the company forward
Apple Inc. doesn't need Steve Jobs, an analyst argued today.
Early on Friday, Apple shares slid below $100 for the first time since May 2007 after a false report circulated that Apple's 53-year-old CEO had suffered a major heart attack. The report, posted on iReport.com, a "citizen journalist" Web site operated by CNN, was quickly denied by Apple, but not before the share price had slid nearly 11%.
The panic was unwarranted, said Ezra Gottheil, an analyst at Technology Business Research Inc.
"Apple doesn't need Jobs anymore," Gottheil said. "He's established three sound businesses -- Mac, iPod and the iPhone -- and the company knows how to execute his fanatical devotion to design and usability. There's a stable management team in place, and they know what they're doing."
Investors have been nervous about Jobs' health since last June, when he appeared gaunt at Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference. Although company spokespeople said Jobs was under the weather from a "common bug," his appearance fueled speculation that he was again seriously ill, a reference to Jobs' 2004 announcement that he had had surgery to remove a cancerous tumor in his pancreas. Jobs in July told The New York Times that he is healthy.
Since then, other incidents, including the accidental posting of Jobs' obituary by Bloomberg LP's financial news service in August, have caused investors to question the company's future sans Jobs.
They shouldn't be so worried, said Gottheil. "Without Jobs, Apple would have to pay a lot more to get the world's attention," he said, referring to the CEO's knack for promoting his company's products. "But he's got a company and a brand and an organization and a strategy in place. There's no reason to think that those things can't be carried forward without him."
If Jobs stepped down, Tim Cook, currently chief operating officer, would run the company, Gottheil said. Cook ran Apple while Jobs out in 2004 after his cancer surgery. Jonathan Ive, Apple's senior vice president for industrial design, would pick up the reins on product design.
The July hiring of former Segway Inc. Chief Technology Officer Doug Field as Apple's new vice president of design, Gottheil speculated, is an attempt by Apple to free up Ive to take on a more strategic view of product design.
That's not to say that Apple wouldn't be different. It would play things more conservatively without Jobs, Gottheil speculated. "It may not be able to make the inspired guesses that created the iPod and the iPhone," he said. But those leaps aren't necessary for Apple to continue. "We believe that sort of risk-taking is no longer necessary, and the current management can build very effectively on what Jobs has created," Gottheil added.
And Gottheil did note that Apple's shares will likely take a hit when Jobs does leave the company. "All this is not to say that the market won't react," he said. "Investors will certainly panic until they see proof that the management team can continue."
"But I see Apple after Jobs as Ford after Henry Ford," Gottheil said. "The acolytes have incorporated the main teachings of Jobs. He's created a process and a culture that will continue."
I believe Apple would fail without Steve Jobs, just as they did when they fired him back in 1985. His return to the company has brought success, Jobs is the motivating force behind Apple's current success.
The richest man in America, Bill Gates, said in a television interview broadcast Sunday that the US financial crisis, while does not spell the end of capitalism and will not lead to a depression.
"It's a very interesting crisis," Microsoft founder told CNN, discussing the US Congress's 700-billion dollar bailout bill for Wall Street which was passed Friday to stem economic jitters spreading around the world.
The slump triggered by the collapse of the subprime housing market requires "some type of correction," Gates added, "but fundamentally ... companies' willingness to invest, right now we haven't seen a huge disruption in that."
"It looks like the economy may go down somewhat, but nothing like a big recession or a depression," he added.
On some experts' misgivings about the US bailout plan, Gates said: "it doesn't look like fixing these problems is going to derail the economy in some dramatic way."
Gates, who last month topped Forbes magazine's list of the richest men in the United States with an estimated 57 billion dollar fortune, said the future of the US and the global economies lies in the resilience and innovative spirit of businessmen and scientists around the world.
"The amount of innovation taking place, the amount of investment is actually greater today than ever," Gates said.
"Because you not only have more American companies with more scientists and engineers and innovators, but now you have ... people from all over, including lots of people in India and China, now contributing to new drug design, new software design, new energy generation design."
Gates said on CNN that the quest for new technologies to increase food production and reduce global warming through cheaper and cleaner energy sources "will deliver those advances" to push the world economy forward.
Gates retired from Microsoft in June to focus on running the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, aimed at fighting disease, reducing poverty, and improving education around the world.
He remains Microsoft's largest single shareholder and chairman of company's board of directors.
PC Magazine recently sat down with Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer to discuss a wide range of topics and, as invariably happens, a portion of the conversation turned to Apple:
PC Magazine: Microsoft is the icon of the PC. What do you think about the Apple commercials: "I'm a Mac, and I am a PC"?
Steve Ballmer: I think they need a little bit of correction, and you'll see us be much more vigorous about stating the case for the PC. The truth of the matter is, this is ironic. The PC outsells the Mac 33 to 1—32 to 1. And despite the fact that we don't sell PCs, we only sell Windows to people who make PCs. And the attack is actually on the PCs, interestingly enough. You'll see us defend the PC. We're going to talk about why—look, PCs are better than Macs. That is not something that can be debated. 32 out of every 33 times, somebody buys a PC instead of a Mac. I'm not saying that there are not some things that people like about Macs, apparently there are. But have you ever seen a cheap Mac? No.
MacDailyNews Take: Ballmer's definition of "better" needs a lot of work. Apple doesn't make "cheap" junk, but compare a Mac to a similarly-spec'ed PC and you'll find the Macs is very competitive and, oftentimes, even less expensive. And using every cash register and dumb terminal in the world in an attempt to diminish Mac "market share" is just plain pathetic.
• NPD: Apple took 20% market share of U.S. retail notebook sales in July and August - October 01, 2008
• Net Applications: Apple’s Mac OS share hit new all-time high of 8.23% in September 2008 - October 01, 2008
• NPD: Apple vaults to 10.6% share in North American notebook market - September 17, 2008
• Gartner: Apple Mac grabs 10.4 percent share of U.S. home market - August 26, 2008
• Gartner: Apple Mac #1 in Q2 08 Europe education market share - again - August 01, 2008
Ballmer continues: You know, they like to act like Macs are lightweight, there are much lighter weight PC notebooks. Macs—do they have the best battery power? Of course they don't have the best battery power. Macs tend to have nice screens, but can you get nicer screens for a PC? Of course. Do Macs work in business? No, they do not.
MacDailyNews Take: Ballmer's fear is palpable. Does he understand that an entire business unit of his company is dedicated to making Microsoft Office for Mac? (This is why Mac users should not buy Office, by the way; Microsoft will take your money and then immediately turn around and ignore your very existence). Do PCs run Mac OS X Leopard and iLife and many other best-in-class Mac-only apps? No, they do not. Only Apple Macs run all the world's major OSes and applications:
• Apple Macs run Windows Vista less awfully than PCs - April 17, 2008
• Windows to Mac switcher finds comfort in ability to run Windows, then leaves Windows behind - April 16, 2007
• Apple Macs that can run Windows are bad news for Microsoft - August 08, 2006
• Couldn’t you just buy a Mac and run Windows? Microsoft CEO Ballmer: ‘No, we prefer real PCs’ - April 29, 2006
Ballmer continues: You know, there are so many—you know, can you find Macs in—I'm very sensitive to exactly what mouse I have on my laptop. Can you find a range of choices? Of course you can't find a range of choices.
MacDailyNews Take: This guy runs a company? (Yeah, into the ground.) Virtually any USB mouse from any company works with a Mac and, oh, by the way, this one does, too (for just one example of many from Microsoft itself): Microsoft Notebook Mouse for Mac: "Microsoft’s most portable wireless notebook mouse connects seamlessly to Mac’s using Bluetooth." We heartily discourage Mac users from buying products made by companies whose CEO's do not even know they make Mac products and who routinely disparage Mac users.
Ballmer continues: You know, anyway—can you find the applications you want on the Mac? Well, you don't really get full Microsoft Office.
MacDailyNews Take: Because I tried to have them cripple it in order to push more PC sales since we screwed the pooch with Vista, but it backfired: VBA returns to future Office for Mac versions - May 13, 2008. And, check this out, too: Fortune Small Business: The best PC for Microsoft Office is Apple Mac - August 08, 2008
Ballmer continues: So 32 out of 33 times people chose PCs, there must be something better about the PC, and that's a story that deserves to be told. I think it's a story of choice.
MacDailyNews Take: Yeah, the wrong choice: Mac vs. Windows in business case study: Macs have 1/3 fewer problems that are solved 30% faster - June 02, 2008
Full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: Someone really should let Uncle Fester in on the news: Only Apple Macs run Mac OS X, Windows, Linux, etc. and their attendant applications. In other words, not only is the Mac able to run the world's most advanced operating system, Mac OS X, it can also slum it as a fast PC when the user so desires (or is forced to by Microsoft's many attempts at lock-in). Because Apple Macs also offer the full "PC experience," Ballmer's criticisms — and $300 million ad campaign — fail completely.
The MacBook Brick is a block of high-quality, aircraft grade aluminum. It is the beginning.
The beginning of what?
It is the beginning of the new Apple manufacturing process to make MacBooks. It is totally revolutionary, a game changer. One of the biggest Apple innovations in a decade.
The MacBook manufacturing process up to this point has been outsourced to Chinese or Taiwanese manufacturers like Foxconn. Now Apple is in charge. The company has spent the last few years building an entirely new manufacturing process that uses lasers and jets of water to carve the MacBooks out of a brick of aluminum.
(Yes, this sounded a bit crazy to us as well. But our source is adamant so bear with us. He says Apple has built a manufacturing process that would make Henry Ford proud.)
This isn't entirely new. Steve Jobs has always had a fondness for having his own plant to produce computers. In 1990, he built a totally automated plant in Fremont California (thanks PED) that could build NeXT machines with only 100 workers. It was a "plant with just about everything: lasers, robots, speed, and remarkably few defects." Unfortunately, the demand wasn't very high at the time. However, Jobs remarked, "I'm as proud of the factory as I am of the computer."
One thing about Steve Jobs is that he seems to always return to his failures and then turn them into successes. That is where our information ends and speculation begins.
What advantages are there to manufacturing with 3D laser and water jet cutting?
- Carving out of aluminum eliminates the need to bend the metal and create weak spots or microfolds and rifts.
- There are no seams in the final product, so it is smooth.
- Screws aren’t needed to tie the products together.
- The shell is one piece of metal so it is super light, super strong and super cheap.
- You can be a whole lot more creative with the design if you don't have to machine it.
The newly designed MacBooks are still on target for an October 14th announcement and the press should be getting invites within the next few days. There are still so many questions to be answered. I am sure Steve Jobs will enjoy answering them.
Where does PA Semi fit into this? What about former Segway CTO, Doug Field who was hired as Apple VP of product design a few months ago?
We realize that a lot of people will be skeptical but bear with us for a few weeks. Remember when we said there were going to be aluminum iMacs? Fat nanos? iPod Touch? Slim, MacBook Air? Basically, every major product that Apple has released over the past 15 months. We are putting a lot on the line here for this mother of all rumors...wish us luck :D
(oh, and sorry for the riddling...it was at the behest of our source)
Here are 2 videos of Craig Ferguson telling some Apple & Microsoft jokes, enjoy.
Microsoft, Wake Up and Smell Defeat!
iPhone Spanks Microsoft
According to a leaked email from a PC OEM, Microsoft has officially extended the life of its now-beloved Windows XP, moving the date of planned obsolescence from January 31, 2009 all the way to July 31, 2009. In the wake of its very expensive ad campaign promoting (in a roundabout way) Vista, the move is a bit surprising. Essentially, Microsoft is trying to let users skip Vista completely, moving directly from XP to its forthcoming OS, Windows 7. The deadline for OEMs to include Windows XP recovery discs has been pushed back a couple of times already, and apparently some Microsoft hardware partners want it even further in the future than July. XP has become the Bill Clinton of OSs (stay with me here): yeah, it was great at the time, but it's showing its age and its enthusiasm for the new guy is sometimes suspect. Windows 3.11 in 2008!
I'm sure by now we all have heard about the Steve Jobs so called "heart attack" was just a rumor. The Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating “Johntw,” the as-yet unidentified rumor mongerer who briefly drove Apple stocks down nearly 10% Friday before Apple PR finally broke its silence and let it be known that Steve Jobs had not, in fact, suffered a heart attack?
Rumors are not uncommon for Apple, there have been negative and positive for the company. CNN says it is cooperating with the investigation, giving the SEC what information it has about Johntw (most likely limited to an IP number and an e-mail address), and it is possible that the Feds will get their man. Or woman.
I think if someone knowingly starts a rumor or passes on a rumor, they should be punished severely. This is even worse than insider trading. This is deliberate and malicious destruction of value and people’s lives. I hope the SEC gets this "Johntw" and make him an example for all those who find the need to start rumors.
I don't blame Microsoft for the hiring halt, with the economic uncertainties , most companies will be doing the same.
Here is an article from gamercenteronline.com:
Today, according to AlleyInsider, Robbie Bach, who heads Entertainment and Devices (Xbox, Zune, etc), sent out an email last night announcing a freeze at his group at Micorsoft. Prior to receiving the news AlleyInsider questioned Microsoft for comment about the possibility of a companywide hiring freeze. Statement from spokesman Lou Gellos:
“Microsoft will continue to grow and add thousands of new jobs this year, but given the current economic environment we are taking the prudent step of reviewing our hiring plans and will make some adjustments as appropriate. We are optimistic about our prospects for growth and will continue hiring the talent we need to ensure our ongoing success.”
Microsoft has endorsed the $700 billion Wall Street bailout that President Bush signed into law on Oct. 3. But how’s this for some quick math: Microsoft’s annual profits could pay the entire $700 billion sum faster than some US homeowners can pay off their mortgages. Here’s how.
Let’s do some quick math. Microsoft’s net income was $17.681 billion for its fiscal year ended June 2008. Now, assume those annual profits hold steady until the end of time. (Hey, it could happen.)
If Uncle Sam invoiced Microsoft for the entire $700 billion bailout (and let’s assume we don’t charge Microsoft interest…), the software giant could pay off the $700 billion balance in roughly 39 years and seven months.
At that rate, Microsoft could pay for the bailout faster than some US homeowners will pay off their mortgages.
My Fellow Americans: Thank You
Brad Smith, senior VP and general counsel at Microsoft, isn’t offering to pick up the $700 billion tab. But he is praising the government bailout plan.
According to a statement from Smith released Oct. 3:
Congressional passage of the financial recovery package is a critically important step to bringing back economic stability in the U.S. and around the globe. This crisis affects more than just the U.S. financial sector, it affects every corner of the world economy, and today’s vote will help re-instill confidence around the globe. Microsoft is pleased to see members of the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate come together to pass this important legislation. I particularly appreciate the support of the Members of the Washington State delegation who cast their vote today to help preserve jobs in all sectors of the economy of Washington state and across the U.S.
Yada, yada, yada, thank you Main Street USA for bailing out Wall Street.
Apple is getting sued for forcing customers to use AT&T after their contract ends, violating antitrust laws. Although I don't want Apple to get sued, part of me is happy because like many others, I would like to use another carrier with the iPhone.
Here is the link to the document filed: Case 5:05-cv-05152-JW Document 144
Seems like a lot of people want Steve Jobs dead lately....Here is an article from techcrunch.com...
Apple’s stock took a temporary 10-point hit this morning after a false report surfaced on CNN’s iReport that Steve Jobs had a heart attack. The report has been removed, but only after Silicon Alley Insider and others confirmed with Apple that Jobs did not have a heart attack. And the stock jumped right back up to its opening levels. SIA captured the original report:
Steve Jobs was rushed to the ER just a few hours ago after suffering a major heart attack. I have an insider who tells me that paramedics were called after Steve claimed to be suffering from severe chest pains and shortness of breath. My source has opted to remain anonymous, but he is quite reliable. I haven’t seen anything about this anywhere else yet, and as of right now, I have no further information, so I thought this would be a good place to start. If anyone else has more information, please share it.
Was this just a short seller trying to make a quick buck, or someone trying to see how fast and far they could spread a false rumor? And what does it say about the value of citizen journalists?
Rather than fight the rise of citizen journalism, CNN decided to try to co-opt it by launching iReport. CNN’s iReport site lets anyone put up posts and videos about the news. Its tagline is “Unedited. Unfiltered. News.” Sometimes these reports get on CNN proper (presumably, after being vetted).
But as this incident shows even the an unvetted report carries more weight than if it had appeared on Twitter or a random blog because it is on a CNN site. And that may be purely because it gets distributed more broadly. It could also be because people tend to believe what they read on CNN-branded sites.
Let’s not let one bad apple ruin the whole experiment, though. Obviously, there are a lot of smart people out there who can contribute to general news gathering. There needs to be a better truth filter on iReport and other sites that allow the anonymous reporting of news. A better reputation system for contributors would help. They should be encouraged to use their real names. And maybe a bigger disclaimer needs to be placed up top saying: “Read At Your Own Risk.”
Apple can also learn a lesson from this. The stock would not have dropped so much if there wasn’t already a deep level of concern for Steve Jobs’ health and if the market knew who might take over in case of an emergency.
Here is a previous post on how Steve Jobs responded to his death rumors.
Here is an Ad by Microsoft, trying to discredit Apples stereotype of PC users in their "I'm a Mac, I'm a Pc" Ads. The point is simple: Not all PC users look like John Hodgman. Its so funny how much the guy in this ad , Sean Siler, looks like the PC guy, John Hodgman, from the Apple ads. One of Microsoft's latest commercials had Sean Siler's email address right inside, you can email "him" at firstname.lastname@example.org if you want.
Microsoft Viet Nam has launched an open license publication (OLP) programme to help small- and medium-sized enterprises legalise their Windows software applications during the fourth quarter of 2008.
With the exception of the Windows operating system, it will be possible to transfer other Microsoft products purchased under the open license publication from one computer to another whenever an enterprise upgrades or replaces its old PCs.
According to a report published recently by the Software Business Association, Vietnam’s copyright infringement rate has reduced from 88% in 2006 to 85% in 2007. However, the country still suffers losses of 200 million USD per year as a result of copyright infringements.
Microsoft is planning to publish additional information relating to the OLP in the near future to help businesses improve their understanding of Microsoft’s licensing mechanisms.
Attendees at Microsoft’s Professional Developer Conference next month are in for a treat: everyone going will get a 160GB hard disk with a copy of all the software on show, including Windows 7. “Software + Services” is the company’s big idea at this PDC, and, as previously announced, Microsoft will be showing off—and giving out—a new cloud computing framework.
Though there’s sure to be interest in the cloud computing software, the software giveaway just got a whole lot more exciting with the news that attendees will receive a “pre-beta” build of Windows 7. Mindful of the lukewarm reception that Windows Vista received on its eventual release, Microsoft has thus far kept quiet about the next version of Windows; this time around, the company wants to make sure that expectations match with the software that will actually be released.
Past demos have shown off the OS’s new multitouch features, and it has been confirmed that many built-in applications will be removed and replaced with “Windows Live”-branded downloads. More speculatively, it’s likely that there will be improvements to the taskbar, greater resolution independence, faster booting (and generally better performance), and an improved installation experience. PDC will be the first time developers get to see Windows 7 in its entirety and this is sure to be a highlight of the event.
One issue that MS has remained quiet about is the all-important question, “When will 7 be released?” Some time in 2009 has been widely assumed (thanks in no small part to some loose words by Bill Gates), but more official statements are “three years after Vista,” where “three years” means anything from “three years and zero months” to “three years and eleven months.” Vista went RTM at the end of November 2006 and was made generally available at the end of January 2007, so that pushes 7 to the end of 2009 or, more likely, to 2010.Although the 2009 claim has been made often, it seems rather optimistic if past Windows releases are anything to go by. Microsoft’s ambitions for Windows 7 are more modest than they were for Windows Vista. Indeed, its server counterpart has already been named “Windows Server 2008 R2?, which gives a sense of the scale Microsoft is aiming for; if it weren’t for the stigma attached to the Vista name, I doubt anyone would even be talking of “Windows 7.” This release will be “Vista R2? in all but name. Microsoft’s last release with this kind of scale was Windows XP. As such, a comparison with XP’s development seems appropriate.
An alpha of “Windows Neptune” (a home-oriented update to Windows 2000) was made in December 1999, with a later beta release in April 2000. Neptune was then combined with “Windows Odyssey” (a minor update to Windows 2000 for business users) to create Windows Whistler—the codename that XP used during its development. The first Whistler beta shipped at PDC 2000, on July 13th. Beta 1 was released in October 2000, beta 2 in March 2001, Release Candidates 1 and 2 both in July 2001, with the final build in August of 2001. This gives between 12.5 and 14.5 months from first beta to final software.
To finish in 2009, therefore, would require Windows 7 to go from “pre-beta” to RTM within the same timeframe as it took XP to go from beta to RTM. This isn’t impossible, but it doesn’t leave much room to maneuver. To get into stores for the holiday season would leave even less time; given the two month lag between RTM and retail availability, 7 would have to be finished less than a year from now.
Windows 7 has already been in development for a couple of years (if not more), of course, which might give it an advantage over XP, but in practice I don’t think that this will allow MS to significantly condense the beta period. Real user testing takes time, and there’s not much that can be done about that. Further, in spite of its longer development, Windows 7 will be at a slightly less advanced stage than XP was on its first public outing (pre-beta, whatever that may imply, versus beta). It wouldn’t be surprising if we had to wait another few weeks to get a true beta.
After the missteps of Vista, Windows 7 has got to hit the ball out the park; Microsoft needs this release to win back the mindshare that it has lost in the time since Vista’s release. The company can’t afford to let quality slip just to attain a release date. Putting it all together, I wouldn’t expect to see Windows 7 before early 2010. 2009 just seems too far, too fast.
The above image is from Microsoft Paint, which would see a major facelift since its applications installment. Similar enhancements are expected in a lot of while the Sidebar may be omitted from the design. But that doesn’t mean, that the Widgets would be gone altogether. You can now add them to the desktop directly.
sources: clipbit.com, sizlopedia.com
Today the US Copyright Royalty Board is going to decide if they agree to increase music royalty payments as requested by the National Music Publishers Association, and for some reason the British are panicking over the idea that the Apple iTunes Music Store will shut down because of this. The reason for their hysteria is a Board at the Library of Congress deposition by iTunes vice president Eddy Cue in 2007:
If (iTunes) was forced to absorb any increase in the... royalty rate, the result would be to significantly increase the likelihood of the store operating at a financial loss - which is no alternative at all. Apple has repeatedly made it clear that it is in this business to make money, and most likely would not continue to operate [iTunes] if it were no longer possible to do so profitably.
As a result of this, the limey yellow press and the BBC are talking about music apocalypse today, Nostradamus style, as if they were one of those crazy potheads who keep writing to us about how the Large Hadron Collider is going to assplode and take the reality fabric with it.
Well, here's a note to all those who are trying to spin this for their own benefit, saying that Apple is "holding its customers to ransom by threatening to shut down its iTunes music download site": Not only there's no ransom because Apple's protected material keeps working even while the store is not but, quite simple, it's just not going to happen.