Three Guys and a Podcast: Apple News & Analysis
Is it June already? Well not quite, but certainly close enough to really start sinking our teeth into what we will find at the WWDC in 2011.
Having personally attended several Mac trade-shows back in the day (not any recently since Apple has canceled such events), the anticipation for Steve or "JobsCo" to reveal something new is no different this time around. Matter of fact one can argue the stakes are even higher with so many more irons in the fire.
If Boy Genius reporting is accurate, Apple is setting the stage to make the higher educational sales competition a no-contest event this summer. The report claims Apple will be offering $200 off any iPad with the purchase of a Mac, which is an additional offer added to the typical free iPod touch offer given to students during the educational buying season. Apple offering iPads as low as $299 – it's a game over situation.
If you have any form of youth in the house and were considering a Mac or iPad, this "may be coming" offer marks the time to get some new Apple goodness. Students are on, or around, campus most of the time, thus a majority are likely to just go with an iPad wifi model. But many students will consider a 3G version with Apple's tempting discount, pitting Apple against its carrier partners, specifically Verizon.
Can Facebook be a cause of depression in children and teens? That seems to be one of the findings of a study produced by the American Academy of Pediatrics. The study sites,
“Seventy-five percent of teenagers now own cell phones, and 25% use them for social media, 54% use them for texting, and 24% use them for instant messaging.”
The polycarbonate MacBook was last updated in May 2010, which was a minor speed improvement. The last major update for the standard Macbook was the move to a polycarbonate unibody case back in October of 2009.
Up until last fall, this MacBook was the cheapest laptop Apple offered. That ended when Apple released the 11-inch MacBook Air in the fall of 2010. Will Apple keep two laptops in this price range or get rid of one?
I've been a Photoshop user since 1992 starting with Photoshop 2 (that's "2" not "CS2"). I worked in technical support for a color printer manufacturer and we needed to use and learn Photoshop because our customers were using it to print to our printers. Sometimes customers would send their files so we could troubleshoot them and figure out why they weren't printing the way the customer expected. This type of troubleshooting required research, working with Adobe and a lot of trial and error. With all that experimenting I became pretty adept at using Photoshop. Over time there were other titles that came and went, like CorelDraw and Painter, but nothing ever seemed to hold a candle to Photoshop, but then I encountered a game changer.
For those looking into virtualization software, here is a succinct review of Parallels Desktop 6, with a splash VMware Fusion thrown in for good measure. In business there are still instances where Windows is required for OS X users. Many accounting packages and financial desktop-based software solutions are still tied to Windows-only versions.
Times are changing rapidly, but for Mac business users it isn't quite a 100% Windows-free world (not yet at least). To get us Mac users through the slog that is Windoze, apple.it-enquirer delivers a solid review. Who is this article written by? Good question. It only credits "Admin" but it is likely written by the site's publisher Erik Vlietinck. The quick verdict is that Parallels 6 Desktop is outpacing VMware Fusion in many user friendly areas. Games, boot time and file swapping between OS environments, Parallels is winning the war.
Apple has improved their batteries in two ways over the past couple of years. In January 2009, Apple improved their battery capacity by as much as sixty percent in the MacBook Pro 17-inch. This was largely due to removing the packages that made the battery removable, which mainly allowed for a bigger battery. Apple also added a chip that controls each cell’s current for maximizing battery life.
Last fall, Apple debuted new battery technology which allows thirty days of standby power. While not as big of a feature on MacBooks, due to frequent use, it still changes day to day use by not requiring the battery to be charged everyday. With thirty days of standby power, mobile devices will have the power when the user needs it. These are nice advancements, but there are new battery technologies which Apple could incorporate into their products soon. Lets take a look at some of the more interesting potential battery improvements that are just on the horizon.
Whack! No, that wasn't Apple's Steve Jobs laying some open letter smack down on Adobe. This time the hammer on Flash comes from some former Apple engineering employees (according to 9to5mac.com). HTML5 is claimed to be converted on-the-fly from Flash, with no need for additional coding requirements via a new product called HYPE 1.0.
Conversion of Flash to HTML5 is a wonderful thing, but I wouldn't call this a Flash killer (at least not yet). The product allows for the lazy use of Flash to continue as a baseline authoring tool, being converted upon output for iOS and other HTML5-loving devices. But at some point the question will become (if it hasn't already) "Why can't I just design in an HTML5 authoring tool from the get-go, instead of designing in Flash and converting?"
HP's VP of European operations, Eric Cador, has claimed that HP will be better than number one in the tablet market. "We call it number one plus," said Cador.
Now that HP has thrown their skin in the game, this may mark the time I need to come back with a comprehensive article on why every tablet out there that's trying to be "iPad plus" absolutely stink. Cador also called Apple an expensive island, regurgitating a dated stereotype of the 90's (AKA Microsoft's diatribe against Apple).
Early reports (and videos) are pouring in, in what appears to be a Foxconn manufacturing facility which exploded a few hours ago. The initial reports are claiming the explosion occurred in an iPad 2 production building, and that the explosion has effected several floors.
Initial speculation as to what caused the explosion was thought to be a fine dust (think grain elevators), which ignited and caused the explosion. At this point it is not known as to how many people, if any, have been injured, and we certainly wish everyone the best and are hoping no one has been injured.