Category: Technology

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Technology

KSC is the new home of Atlantis

It’s cool looking at the surroundings in this video because we just had our first visit to KSC in December of last year.  So I can visualize the OPF’s and the launch pads and walked the grounds of the rocket garden.  I also rode the space shuttle simulator, so I know the layout there.  Can’t wait to make a return trip once Atlantis arrives!

Planning on heading to the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center next week. Pictures to come shortly after.


YouTube video with the story:

Computing, Technology

BlackBerry shows us their “PlayBook”

Research In Motion (RIM) shows us a preview of their business-oriented tablet, the BlackBerry “PlayBook.”

This could become a competitor to Apple’s iPad, considering that a lot of businesses already have BlackBerries in place and existing BES servers in place.  This might be a natural evolutionary product.

More details can be found at BlackBerry’s site, but the basics of the hardware include dual HD cameras (front and back), a 1GHz processor and a new tablet-based OS developed by QNX software.

Computing, Technology

Friday’s iPhone 4 News Conference [Updated]

Speculation has been running rampant on the interwebs as to what Apple’s scheduled Friday news conference would be about.  A recall? Free bumpers? Admission of guilt (finally)? Gizmodo even has a play-along game for those so inclined.

I must say that I don’t have much of a problem with my iPhone 4.  It has never dropped a call.  I think if I try really, really hard, I might be able to drop a signal bar or two if I force the “death grip” on it.  But unless I really try hard, I have zero problems with the iPhone 4.

However, I do have a bone to pick with Apple.  It has nothing to do with the iPhone 4.  It’s my previous iPhone 3G that is now my wife’s phone.  They say a picture is worth a thousand words, so a YouTube video must be worth even more… I have this problem, described so eloquently in this video:

That about sums it up.  The iPhone 3G with iOS 4 is slow.  Very slow.  Almost unusable.  I may try to take it back to the previous OS soon.

By the way, I’m guessing that Apple will announce free bumpers today.  I have no first-hand knowledge, but knowing what a PR fiasco this has been, and knowing that a recall would cost major $$$ and cause every iPhone 4 owner to be without their device for x days — well, that just ain’t gonna happen.  It’s possible they may announce some kind of software fix for this problem, but I find it unlikely.  My money’s on free bumpers.  We’ll just have to wait and see.

Update: I was more or less right.  They are giving a free case to everyone who bought an iPhone.  According to Steve, they can’t make bumpers fast enough, so they will be sourcing more cases and starting next week, you’ll be able to apply online.  Also, if you bought a case from Apple, you’ll get a full refund.  This is how they should handle it.  Even if it’s been blown out of proportion, this is a good solution.

Technology

Is Apple starting to lose its ‘cool’?

I just don’t know about this one.  Well, actually I do know about it, and I think Apple has gone off the deep end.

If you are unaware of what’s going on, here’s a quick recap:

Apple has decided to attempt to enforce patents that have allegedly been infringed upon by competitor HTC.  A little more in depth background available here:

Apple sues HTC over iPhone patents (cnet)

Unfortunately, what’s really going on here is that Apple is just trying to obliterate the competition by suing them out of the smartphone business.  Apple has always been an innovative company.  More accurately, Apple has been a company that knows how to perfect a maturing technology.  They take a few disparate technologies (cell phone, MP3 player, GPS, e-mail, mobile web browser, etc.), throw them in one sleek box (iPhone), seal it tightly so that no one can jeopardize their OOBE, and charge a huge amount of money for the whole experience.  But the upshot of all this is that Apple moves the consumer market forward,  They make everyone else play catch-up.

And others are starting to catch up.  Windows Mobile should have had this market wrapped up several years ago.  They’ve been pushing smartphones for years but have always been just short of mass appeal.  In fact, my last two phones were both Windows Mobile based phones, one of which was the HTC S620.  Again, as a perfect example, the “HTC S620” did a lot of things quite well, but “HTC S620” just doesn’t sound nearly as sexy as the “iPhone.”  No fun = no sales.

Anyway, one article (and there are several) that shares my opinion of the lawsuits is available here:

Why Apple’s Really Suing HTC (PC World)

One nice way to try and get a grasp of how Steve Jobs’ mind works is to listen to what he has said over the years.  After listening to this quote from an old YouTube video, it sounds as if Steve has had expertise in this area before, but maybe on the other side of the fence:

Technology

Really, AT&T?

I received this in my e-mail this afternoon:

picky

Really, AT&T? Just $9.99 per month? That’s it? Funny.  Google Voice provides this same service for free.  Of course, everything Google Voice provides is free.

You’d think, though, that for all the money I already give AT&T each month, that they’d give me a little something extra once in a while.

But, no.  Cool service, but I’m not paying extra for it.