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Submission + - Has Apple Peaked? 2

Hugh Pickens writes writes: "Joe Nocerna writes in the NY Times that Steve Jobs was a perfectionist with no tolerance for corner-cutting or mediocre products. The last time Apple released a truly substandard product — MobileMe, in 2008 — Jobs gathered the team into an auditorium, berated them mercilessly and then got rid of the team leader in front of everybody. But when Apple replaced Google’s map application with its own, vastly inferior, application, infuriating its customers, it may turn out to be the canary in the coal mine for Apple's future. Part of the reason is that Jobs isn’t there anymore but there is also a less obvious — yet possibly more important — reason that Apple’s best days may soon be behind it. "When Jobs returned to the company in 1997, after 12 years in exile, Apple was in deep trouble. It could afford to take big risks and, indeed, to search for a new business model, because it had nothing to lose." writes Nocerna adding that less than 15 years ago Microsoft appeared to be invincible but once its Windows operating system and Office applications became giant moneymakers, Microsoft’s entire strategy became geared toward protecting its two cash cows. Now it is Apple’s turn to be king of the hill — and, not surprisingly, it has begun to behave in a very similar fashion. "I would be surprised if [Apple] ever gives us another product as transformative as the iPhone or the iPad," concludes Nocera. "It is the nature of capitalism that big companies become defensive, while newer rivals emerge with better, smarter ideas.""

Comment Re:As Clifford Stoll Said (Score 1) 290

Computers in the class room have been around at least 25 years. There was an Apple ][ in every classroom when I was a kid. We used it to die of dysentery on the Oregon Trail. Did we learn anything about history? No. We learned to that all that settlers needed was a 99 rounds of ammunition.

But did you learn something about computers? Chances you did learn something if you are now on Slashdot. The role of computers should be to provide a shiny toy for students to want to figure out how it works. To learn reading to play an RPG, to learn history to learn the backstory behind war games, etc.

Computers in the classroom are just the latest incarnation of the whiz-bang technology that would magically make improve education and test scores, without requiring any more work on the child's, parent's, or teacher's part. Just like television, movies, and filmstrips were hailed as an educator's silver bullet generations before. (Stoll wrote about this 14 years ago, and it stills holds true.)

...And how many kids who are have graduated still remember watching The Magic School Bus and Bill Nye the Science Guy? My guess is a lot of them.

Anyone that has attended class in any "e-learning" classroom, can attest that of the regular occurrences of projectors that don't work. Video and audio links that fail. Overly sensitive microphones and the like. The amount of time wasted trying to just set things up before instruction can begin is non-trivial, and easily can accumulate to entire missed days of instruction. No thank you.

...Mostly because teachers and professors are absolutely clueless on technology having long lost the ability to learn after their last degree

If you really want to improve education, how about removing the distractions, and actually teaching out of the book?

...Because that would be removing over half the class and relying on a book that is usually severely out of date?

Comment Re:Meanwhile... (Score 1) 335

I would argue that laws should represent the views of the majority, and I think it's quite clear that the majority of people have little to no problem with piracy. It is a victimless crime.

You gotta be careful with that line of thinking. If the majority thinks computer nerds should be shot on site do you really want that to be the law?

Laws must always take into count the minority and strike some sort of balance where as many "people" as possible have the most freedoms allowable. There is no perfection to be had and there will always be those fringe cases that unsettle us but WE CAN surely do better not only here in the U.S. but in all countries.

Comment Re:Its just stupid (Score 1) 408

SO? They are impaired from fucking with the radio, too, aren't they? Holding cell phone conversations? Eating? Putting on make-up? Slapping the kids around?

Yes, never said they weren't. But, so are you impaired from your cellphone/texting, only you're too full of yourself too believe it.

In Germany, home of ultra strict driving laws...

I don't need lessons in German driving from you...I drove on the Autobahns for six years. Yes, I wish we would train our drivers the same way, and yes our lack of any real drivers training is shameful. By the way, if you're going to use statistics, you need to not compare apples to oranges...deaths by percentage of population is a poor comparison...try something like...Germany:6 fatalities/billion miles, U.S.:8 fatalities/billion miles.

Wow, not quite the "slaughter" you make it out to be, is it?

I guess 40,000+ isn't a slaughter?

You really don't have any say in the matter. It's illegal to smoke pot and to speed, too, but people still do it and get away with it all the time. It sure does infuriate people like you who see they can't control others with an iron fist

Actually, I do. I vote, and write to my congress critters. Maybe you need to back away from your pipe long enough to stop assuming that you know what other peoples feelings are, and stop judging them. As for what those feelings are, well I'll tell you, since you were so kind. I personally don't give a shit what anyone else does to themselves as long as it doesn't interfere with another persons right to do the same.

LOL, no, I won't be suffering, because I'm just going to continue doing the same thing I've been doing.

I'm sure you're not old enough to remember when people drove around w/o seat belts, and the days before M.A.D.D. I am, and times have changed, and now you see cops pulling folks over for not wearing them. You occasionally see sobriety checkpoints. And, now you're seeing enough of the population that's pissed off enough about the morons weaving down the road that you're very likely to observe police action. So, good luck with your go-fuck-yourself-I'm-gonna-do-whatever-I-want attitude.

No, of course not. Why the hell would I want to do that?

Well, you were the "dumbass" that made the claim that you weren't impaired while texting. I was offering an opportunity for you to stand up and prove it, but here's your admission of...well, not really...rookie.

Comment Re:Before the outcry of "foolish fools!" (Score 1) 258

The vaccination DOES NOT boost the chances of normal flu, but DOES boosts the chances of swine flu.

Why would you expect the seasonal flu vaccine to boost the chance of normal flu? Seems to me the expected result is for the seasonal flu vaccine to reduce the chance of seasonal flu, and make no difference to the swine flu.

Comment You're an idealist. (Score 3, Insightful) 334

The complexities take power away from judges, I suppose, but then they put the power in the hands of the lawyers, who have to interpret the laws for the judges.

I prefer keeping the law simple and being able to recall judges who get out of control.

Injustices are going to happen anyway, the only way to deal with that is to learn rudimentary social skills, so you can get others to help you correct them. (Or am I being unreasonably idealistic in asking that?)

Comment Re:Scroll lock! (Score 1) 939

You're right, I did miss the point.

About 6 months ago I bought a 17" dell studio laptop with Vista Home Premium. When W7 RC came out I installed it and have been running it ever since. After reading your post today I became curious and tested the media buttons with WMP minimized, while browsing the interwebs (IE8). They all worked, which REALLY surprised me. When was the last time you tried this and with which OS and hardware?

Comment Re:Maybe I am just lucky.... (Score 1) 688

Fair Issac can't take into account that if I lose my job, unemployment checks are smaller then I expected, etc. that I'll one day say "Fuck it" and just throw all my unsecured debt bills into the fireplace to stay warm.

No, he can't know for sure. But he can use factors, such as your credit score, to evaluate your risk of non-payment. Interest payed on a loan goes, not only to the banker's profits, but also to make up for the dead-beats who never payed their loans.

Comment Re:hooray! (Score 1) 380

For government (not companies), you have a point. However, it still only really extends to data that's shared with the citizens, not systems that are only used within government offices. But remember, the government is accountable to the citizens, and theoretically "of the people", so you certainly have a right to lobby for your government to make an OSS-only rule, that all of its systems must run OSS. Unfortunately, you're only one citizen, and if other citizens disagree, their voices have equal weight.

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