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Comment It is about choice- you're looking at this wrong. (Score 1) 439

"I will never buy such a product".

That's the point. You may not have to. If, in exchange for watching a few advertisements a day, consumers were given a shiny new Apple iPhone300kTurbo for "free", or were given "free" cell service, that might be seen as an acceptable trade.
It benefits Apple by giving them evidence that those pricey advertisements they sell are reaching eyeballs.

Pure speculation on my part, btw. I have no inside knowledge (nor do I really care) about Apple's marketing or product plans.

Comment your home is likely online, already (Score 3, Informative) 174

>>A least Microsoft isn't taking picture of people's homes and posting them online without permission.

They don't have to -- if your home has been built or purchased in the past 30 years, it's likely the floorplan is already available online. Just check with your county/parish tax assessor's office. With many of them, just enter the street address and you can see a county tax appraisor's estimate of value beside a photo or two of the home and a floorplan drawing.

This information, in most cases is considered public information and is thus available free to anyone who can click a mouse. Worst case, a simple data scraper would yield an entire county's data in a few days.

So no, they don't have to drive around and take photos when photos are already available online, complete with a floorplan courtesy of the government.

Comment Re:It's 1980 all over again (Score 1) 164

good catch -- indeed, that was a goof. meant to write 66 but my fingers had other ideas. Sorry. But at any rate, I don't think the specific numbers are that important. The point was the new machine was computationally hundreds of times faster. But in actual use, it was slower in some areas that really matter, to the degree that even a young child noticed!
BTW, It's been a few years since I read it, but I believe this story is included in Abrash's book titled "Michael Abrash's Graphics Programming Black Book" since it's largely a compilation of his DDJ "Mode X" articles and a few others.

Yep, the early 486 with the clock-doubled processor. I had a DX2-80 *I think* (with a VESA local-bus video card so I could play Aces Of The Pacific in 256 color 800x600 mode -- woot!) and thought it was the cat's whiskers. Couldn't believe how fast it was compared to my lowly 33MHz machine @ work. And it only cost me $2300, what a great deal! And to think, now a $99 iPod Touch could run a PC emulator faster than that machine. That's serious progress.

Comment It's 1980 all over again (Score 5, Interesting) 164

Impressive and would be a huge improvement over the current state of things.

But then again, my 1Mhz Apple ][ could cold boot in just a couple seconds.Of course, loading Applesoft Basic from tape took an additional two minutes but Integer Basic was in the ROM.

Michael Abrash wrote a great article about this in Dr. Dobbs magazine in the 90s. His young daughter (5 years old?) asked him why he never used his "fast" computer. Abrash was using a state-of-the-art 266mhz DX2 powerhouse and couldn't figure out what she meant. She was referring to the old Vic-20 in the corner that would boot in just a few seconds. Windows 3.0 took several minutes to load. IIRC, the article was titled "perception is everything"

Comment Reason #9883459 (Score 1, Insightful) 176

Yet another reason why the newspaper business is bleeding money and descreasing subscriptions year after year after year. Kudos to the editors for attempting something different -- trying to match the product they sell to the market demand.

I don't believe these employees understand they are just that -- retained at the pleasure of their employer. If they wish to spout off with unpopular opinions without fear of retribution, they should have either been college professors or Supreme Court justices.

In the meantime, so long as someone else is paying them, they will do as they are told. Call the Waaaambulance.

Comment innovation, custom chips == !hackintosh (Score 5, Insightful) 202

Steve Jobs said it well: "Real artists ship."

It's a very entrepreneurial idea -- quit all the talking and hand-waving and actually ship something! There's not much value in developing great ideas that never get out of the lab.
As for the claim that neither innovates? Hogwash. Taking an idea and integrating it into a viable product IS innovation by definition -- it is something that has not been done before that point. Both MS and Apple innovate, to different degrees, which we can squabble about, ad infinitum. :) I would say MSFT is far better at marketing their ideas and capturing market share, while Apple is better at inventing. Others will have a different view.

But back to the original subject, I suspect Apple's desire for custom chips comes not from a desire to save power (there are already many viable low-power CPUs and chipsets available) but rather a desire to fight off Hackintosh clones (OSX running on non-apple hardware, such as the Dell mini 9 or generic desktop PCs). Technologically, there's no reason why this can't happen but one must consider that Apple's hardware sales are quite profitable and that share is worth protecting.

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