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Businesses

How, and Why, Apple Overtook Microsoft 409

Posted by timothy
from the paper-beats-rock dept.
HughPickens.com writes James B. Stewart writes in the NYT that in 1998 Bill Gates said in an interview that he "couldn't imagine a situation in which Apple would ever be bigger and more profitable than Microsoft" but less than two decades later, Apple, with a market capitalization more than double Microsoft's, has won. The most successful companies need a vision, and both Apple and Microsoft have one. But according to Stewart, Apple's vision was more radical and, as it turns out, more farsighted. Where Microsoft foresaw a computer on every person's desk, Apple went a big step further: Its vision was a computer in every pocket. "Apple has been very visionary in creating and expanding significant new consumer electronics categories," says Toni Sacconaghi. "Unique, disruptive innovation is really hard to do. Doing it multiple times, as Apple has, is extremely difficult." According to Jobs' biographer Walter Isaacson, Microsoft seemed to have the better business for a long time. "But in the end, it didn't create products of ethereal beauty. Steve believed you had to control every brush stroke from beginning to end. Not because he was a control freak, but because he had a passion for perfection." Can Apple continue to live by Jobs's disruptive creed now that the company is as successful as Microsoft once was? According to Robert Cihra it was one thing for Apple to cannibalize its iPod or Mac businesses, but quite another to risk its iPhone juggernaut. "The question investors have is, what's the next iPhone? There's no obvious answer. It's almost impossible to think of anything that will create a $140 billion business out of nothing."

Comment: Re:Umm.... (Score 2) 290

Absolutely not. When the burglers get these they will be able to see if there is anyone at home before breaking in.
This means I need to be able to create ambiguity or block things completely, without interfering with my mobile phone's reception. Stopping drive-by WLAN eavesdropping is not really something I'm bothered about.

Comment: Re:And the scientific evidence for this conclusion (Score 1) 391

> First, there is no reason to believe that we can built robots that can reproduce themselves.

What? This is exactly the technology humans are trying to reach! We're already a significant way down this path!!

> Second, there is no evidence that we or anyone else can build intelligent machines, as the original story seems to presuppose.

Nature did it. We can do it.

> Third, biological organisms are so many orders of magnitude more efficient and flexible than machines that it barely makes sense to put them into the same qualitative category "form of life".

This whole conversation is about extrapolating on the cosmic scale. If you look at the path robotics has taken in the last century it does, as pointed out, actually support the premise of this article.

> Hint: A human consumes only about 2.9 kilowatt hours per day, the equivalent of 1-2 light bulbs ...

Not relevant. Once machines are replicating and repairing themselves they'll do exactly what we do and find other sources of energy.

Frankly I agree with you that it's hard to picture Transformers inhabiting the universe, but OP did make a really good point that extrapolation isn't even in the ballpark of refuting this clown. Honestly I'm shocked he didn't come back with that XKCD cartoon.

Comment: Re:Just like the economy (Score 1) 118

by Vlad_the_Inhaler (#48549271) Attached to: How One Man Changed the Ecology of the Great Lakes With Salmon

This story really surprised me - I expected that sort of behaviour from a Socialist Five Year Plan but not really from the US. Even the instructions from the Party Secretary fit: "The fish division hasn't done anything new in 20 years. Get out there and do something big and spectacular.". The main difference is that the fishing would at least initially have been reserved for party members, maybe top party members.

That story had a link to the next part which took a more modern approach. I found the whole thing fascinating.

Comment: Save an hour? (Score 1) 525

by DudeTheMath (#48497653) Attached to: Montana Lawmakers Propose 85 Mph Speed Limit On Interstates

Right in line with my sig, I guess. How far do you have to drive to "save an hour" by going 85 mph instead of 75 mph? I get 637.5 miles (8.5 hours at 75, 7.5 at 85). That's about the distance from Helena (Montana's capital) to Bismarck, ND, purely on interstate highways. Bozeman is less than a hundred miles from Helena; that's over three round-trips a day to save an hour.

Perhaps two quotes got conflated, though; a round-trip out to the northeast of the state, where there might be Bakken shale work sites, could save an hour. Of course, that means you drove all day just to get back to Helena. No wonder we need that frackin' shale oil so badly.

Comment: The directive does not mention google. (Score 5, Informative) 237

by Whiney Mac Fanboy (#48476823) Attached to: Google Should Be Broken Up, Say European MPs

No Clue indeed. No clue from almost anyone reporting on this piece of news. (it is dissapointing that the BBC headline is so wrong)

Have a read of the Euro Parliament's Press release or (unbelievably better than the BBC) Tech Crunch.

Its a general resolution about online search engines bundling services & about the need to enforce European Competitions laws in the online space.

Businesses

LinkedIn Study: US Attracting Fewer Educated, Highly Skilled Migrants 338

Posted by samzenpus
from the best-and-brightest dept.
vinces99 writes The U.S. economy has long been powered in part by the nation's ability to attract the world's most educated and skilled people to its shores. But a new study of the worldwide migration of professionals to the U.S. shows a sharp drop-off in its proportional share of those workers – raising the question of whether the nation will remain competitive in attracting top talent in an increasingly globalized economy. The study, which used a novel method of tracking people through data from the social media site LinkedIn, is believed to be the first to monitor global migrations of professionals to the U.S., said co-author Emilio Zagheni, a University of Washington assistant professor of sociology and fellow of the UW eScience Institute. Among other things, the study, presented recently in Barcelona, Spain, found that just 13 percent of migrating professionals in the sample group chose the U.S. as a destination in 2012, down from 27 percent in 2000.

Comment: Re:Nation uses malware to spy on ISP Customers... (Score 1) 143

Start from the countries on the list: Russia, Saudi Arabia, Mexico, Ireland, India, Afghanistan, Iran, Belgium, Austria, Pakistan. The percentages added up to 100, a surprise because I would expect at least one or two percent to be "other". That makes me mistrust the figures a bit.

"Significant" countries not on the list include: the US, Canada, Britain, Germany, Israel, Japan, Australia, France, Turkey, Yemen, Iraq, Syria or any of the smaller Gulf States such as Qatar, Bahrain, Dubai. What is also interesting is that Snowden has said nothing about it.

That makes it look a bit like a co-production to me, one state organisation produced it but they shared it with at least one other country.
Russia being top back around 2008-2011 implicates some of the main western countries.
Saudi Arabia being so high on the list implicates Israel, Gulf States, or possibly the U.S.
Austria could possibly point towards Israel.
Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan point towards the U.S.
Mexico being up there implicates the U.S.
Ireland? The only reason I can see for them being on the list is Transatlantic Cables. The GCHQ would maybe care that much.

I would expect the country which produced this to have infected some servers in their own country, to deflect suspicion.
Finally, one significant political event in 2011 was the fall of Mubarak in Egypt. If they were behind it then the dates when it was inactive would make sense, so would the subsequent reappearance. Do they have the ability?

Comment: Cite for "Linux is a Cancer" (Score 4, Informative) 525

You are twisting his words. Ballmer was not talking about Linux, but about the GPL and it's 'viral' nature.

No. You are totally incorrect. Here's the quote, from it source in the Chicago Sun-Times (via the internet archive):

Q: Do you view Linux and the open-source movement as a threat to Microsoft?

A: Yeah. It's good competition. It will force us to be innovative. It will force us to justify the prices and value that we deliver. And that's only healthy. The only thing we have a problem with is when the government funds open-source work. Government funding should be for work that is available to everybody. Open source is not available to commercial companies. The way the license is written, if you use any open-source software, you have to make the rest of your software open source. If the government wants to put something in the public domain, it should. Linux is not in the public domain. Linux is a cancer that attaches itself in an intellectual property sense to everything it touches. That's the way that the license works.

Friction is a drag.

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