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It's too bad that (to the best of my knowledge, and I've hunted a bit), no organisms have evolved to exploit RF signalling. It's not inconceivable, loads of organisms use electrical signalling internally, a fair number have magnetic sensory structures, and a variety of common metals are amenable to biological chemistry if you need a better antenna; but that's the sort of thing that would make linking multiple nervous systems with reasonable speed and without direct contact possible.
As for Apple, I'd be curious to know how much terminating the deal would involve for them. Obviously they'd rather have the sales than not; but there is a big difference between 'not making sales we had previously expected to make' and 'large piles of used inventory being returned and/or inventory prepared for this specific contract now without a destination.'
Particularly if it is only the former, Apple might well cave(not for honor's sake; but because an 'iPads in Education Program a Giant Clusterfuck; Lawsuits Fly!' is not a headline that Apple PR wants running any longer than necessary); if it's the latter they might be harder to convince.
Apple's first-party support for remote management is still better than Android's; but their grip is tight enough that it is them or nothing, while Android is all over the map; but 3rd parties can actually offer options without the keys to the OS.
Are you running something in-house(or off the shelf but fairly heavily specialized) enough that they couldn't just put together an equivalent test environment on their end and use that for the sales pitch, or are they actually that lazy and entitled?
We certainly deal with doing the various things required to make what our users choose work; that's sort of what they pay us for; but I wouldn't have imagined a salesweasel demanding that I set up their tech demo for them.
From the top of the stack, the 'free' parts of android are basically Google's hardware abstraction layer for google play services, and getting steadily more so.
Given that Apple is reputed to be a brutal and efficient taskmaster of its suppliers, I'd imagine that either the school district will fail, or Apple will gouge it out of Pearson; but to the best of my understanding there is logic behind complaining to Apple, given the terms under which the devices were purchased.
However, that assumption is under-supported(even if they were free, it's not news that electronic gizmos are good for slacking off with, so they might have a negative effect unless the school actually has a good plan in mind; and since they aren't free, they are being chosen to the exclusion of other possible educational aids), and if it doesn't happen to be true; then there isn't much of a civil rights case for access to toys. If anything, devices for slacking off probably amplify the effects of differing qualities of home life, since parental attention will have a major effect on how much slacking you can get away with.
Pearson is a company that brings a sort of defense contractor vibe to the educational sector. They are huge, superb at landing contracts, excellent at writing contracts that promise somewhat less than they appear to; but not so hot on delivering, much less on time or on budget.
Anyone buying a zillion ipads for school children without realizing that they'll be using them mostly to screw around on the internet within about five minutes is certainly an idiot; and Pearson certainly can't take the blame for that; but their failure to deliver some curriculum slurry and a terrible textbook app or two within the agreed upon time? That's the sort of thing they do.
Put the avionics on the emitter side of an optoisolator, blindly blinking out location and heading data, the controller for the seatback entertainment system on the receiver side, listening, and you get an arrangement where there simply isn't anything to attack at the software level(you could probably hose in flight entertainment for the entire aircraft one way or another; but boredom isn't very lethal); and where physical attacks might be possible; but (by choosing an optoisolator and the location of the interface between the critical and noncritical side) can be made quite difficult.
The sort of tool use in TFA is interesting because it suggests fairly advanced cognition(and sometimes communication and transmission of learned techniques). Ants aren't so hot at that.
If anything, my intended thesis(that even a relatively weak or computationally limited computer could be a substantial aid to a reasonably skilled human) suggests that even modest machine assistance is quite dramatic cheating in terms of allowing you to beat people above your skill level. Being reasonably good just serves to make the computer's job markedly easier in this case, which then allows it to make your job markedly easier, which defeats the point of involving humans at all.