As part of the deal, Tumblr CEO David Karp — who got a windfall
of cash from the deal — will stay at Yahoo for four years at
least and retain much control over the service, much in the same
way Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom does at Facebook. But, as there,
Yahoo will undergird Tumblr’s nascent advertising business with
its large and established infrastructure.
If they treat Tumblr the way Facebook has (so far) treated Instagram, I think this will work out well.
At the end of a week in which Electronic Arts confirmed it wasn’t developing a thing for the Wii U, one of the software engineers in EA Sports’ Canada studio, in a series of since-deleted tweets, disparaged the console as “crap” and suggested Nintendo should give up on hardware altogether.
With WWDC just a few weeks away, I thought it’d be beneficial to
the Internet at large to compile a working list of everything that
is expected of Apple during their Keynote and subsequent “State of
the Union” addresses in order to appease the Internet. Failure to
introduce each and every one of these features and updates will
result in another stock price plummet, calls for Tim Cook’s ouster
and an infinite amount of comments on tech blogs decrying that
Android is superior to Apple’s iOS.
As I posted a couple of days ago: Everything Is a Remix — so I
have absolutely no problem with these two platforms sharing ideas
and inspiration… but let’s not pretend one has struck off in a
bold new direction.
He also defended his company’s conduct. “I can tell you
unequivocally Apple does not funnel its domestic profits overseas.
We don’t do that. We pay taxes on all the products we sell in the
U.S., and we pay every dollar that we owe. And so I’d like to be
really clear on that,” Cook said.
And to The Washington Post:
“If you look at it today, to repatriate cash to the U.S., you need
to pay 35 percent of that cash. And that is a very high number,”
Cook said in an interview Thursday. “We are not proposing that it
be zero. I know many of our peers believe that. But I don’t view
that. But I think it has to be reasonable.”
Though the app included account support, playlists, commenting,
and most other aspects of YouTube, there’s one thing it was
missing — advertising. It also had two features it shouldn’t have
had — the ability to download videos and the ability to play
videos that the creators have blocked from mobile devices.
We’d be more than happy to include advertising but need Google to
provide us access to the necessary APIs. In light of Larry Page’s
comments today calling for more interoperability and less
negativity, we look forward to solving this matter together for
our mutual customers.
Outgoing Intel CEO Paul Otellini tells The Atlantic’s Alexis Madrigal that Intel passed on a chance to produce CPUs for the iPhone:
“The thing you have to remember is that this was before the iPhone
was introduced and no one knew what the iPhone would do… At the
end of the day, there was a chip that they were interested in that
they wanted to pay a certain price for and not a nickel more and
that price was below our forecasted cost. I couldn’t see it. It
wasn’t one of these things you can make up on volume. And in
hindsight, the forecasted cost was wrong and the volume was 100x
what anyone thought.”
It was the only moment I heard regret slip into Otellini’s voice
during the several hours of conversations I had with him. “The
lesson I took away from that was, while we like to speak with data
around here, so many times in my career I’ve ended up making
decisions with my gut, and I should have followed my gut,” he
said. “My gut told me to say yes.”
Curious whether that was an ARM chip — and if not, what was it?
Google on Wednesday said it would sell a version of Samsung’s
Galaxy S4 running its own “stock” version of Android, not
Samsung’s modified version. The device will go on sale in Google’s
online store, called Play, on June 26, according to Hugo Barra,
vice president of product management for Android. The phone will
cost $650 and will come unlocked.
Apple disputes this in a second filing, also made on April 26 and
released on Tuesday. It says that e-book demand “exploded” with
Apple’s iPad launch, and the average retail price of an e-book
dropped to $7.34 from $7.97.
In a filing released on Tuesday, the Justice Department said that
Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO at the time, “conceded the price-fixing
conspiracy” when he told his biographer that Apple had “told the
publishers, ‘We’ll go to the agency model, where you set the
price, and we get our 30 percent, and yes, the customer pays a
little more, but that’s what you want anyway.’”
If anyone else at Apple had revealed this to a writer, they’d have been fired (by Jobs) immediately. I question Jobs’s judgment in picking Isaacson to write the book in the first place, but no matter who he’d chosen to write the book, he should have held himself to the same standards he held his employees to when it came to keeping the company’s internal workings private.
Edward Wyatt and Nick Wingfield, reporting for the NYT:
In July 2010, Mr. Jobs, Apple’s former chief executive, told the
chief executive of Random House, Markus Dohle, that the publisher
would suffer a loss of support from Apple if it held out much
longer, according to an account of the conversation provided by
Mr. Dohle in the filing. Two months later, Apple threatened to
block an e-book application by Random House from appearing in
Apple’s App Store because it had not agreed to a deal with Apple,
the filing said.
After Random House finally agreed to a contract on Jan. 18, 2011,
Eddy Cue, the Apple executive in charge of its e-books deals, sent
an e-mail to Mr. Jobs attributing the publisher’s capitulation, in
part, to “the fact that I prevented an app from Random House from
going live in the app store,” the filing reads.
Turns an iPad into a point of sale register. Given how many small businesses I already see using Square, I think this is going to sell well.
Update: Square says, “Square Stand works with iPad 2 and 3 (30-pin connector) and costs $299. iPad not included.” Only working with 30-pin connector iPads seems pretty short-sighted, no? Those things are probably going the way of the Dodo bird. And why does it cost $299 if it’s just a stand, a power adapter, and an integrated Square reader? (They send you the dongle readers for free when you sign up.)
About 14 years ago, I got a bad cold, and my voice became hoarse.
At the time I didn’t think much about it. But my voice never fully
recovered. So I went to a doctor and was diagnosed with left vocal
cord paralysis. This is a nerve problem that causes your left
vocal cord to not move properly. Despite extensive examination,
the doctors never identified a cause — though there was
speculation of virus-based damage from my cold. It is quite common
in cases like these that a definitive cause is not found. […]
Fast forward to last summer, when the same pattern repeated
itself — a cold followed by a hoarse voice. Once again things
didn’t fully improve, so I went in for a check-up and was told
that my second vocal cord now had limited movement as well.
Again, after a thorough examination, the doctors weren’t able to
identify a cause.
This week’s episode of my podcast, The Talk Show, with special guest Dan Frommer. Topics including Windows 8’s “have it all” design leading to it failing both as a tablet and PC OS; the loyalty (or perhaps lack thereof) of new Apple customers; Netflix’s commanding and growing lead as a provider of streaming video; and some utterly un-researched speculation about overseas roaming leading to poor iPhone battery life.
Brought to you by two excellent sponsors:
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The ATF’s Maynard said in an affidavit for the Kentucky case that
Apple “has the capabilities to bypass the security software” and
“download the contents of the phone to an external memory device.”
Chang, the Apple legal specialist, told him that “once the Apple
analyst bypasses the passcode, the data will be downloaded onto a
USB external drive” and delivered to the ATF.
It’s not clear whether that means Apple has created a backdoor for
police — which has been the topic of speculation in the past —
whether the company has custom hardware that’s faster at
decryption, or whether it simply is more skilled at using the same
procedures available to the government. Apple declined to discuss
its law enforcement policies when contacted this week by CNET.
I saw this report the other day and it confused me. My understanding is that the entire contents of an iPhone with a passcode (or pass phrase) are encrypted. If Apple can somehow decrypt the contents, then there’s a backdoor, and the possibility exists that someone else will discover the backdoor. (Let alone the problem of Apple being able to do it.)
Charlie Miller, who knows way more about this stuff than I do (and probably as much as anyone outside Apple), is also confused. His theory:
Apple probably uses a signed ramdisk and then brute forces from there.
In which case it’s not really a backdoor, it’s that Apple can more efficiently run through all possible passcodes than law enforcement agencies can. But I take it this means Apple can circumvent the setting that deletes the encryption keys after 10 failed passcode attempts, because they’re not doing the passcode attempts on the device itself.
Brad Choate is thinking the same thing I’m thinking:
Sophisticated phishing attacks can be hard to detect for most. As
software developers, we need to build better detection,
prevention, and countermeasures into apps and services that relay
and present these messages so users will be less likely to fall
victim to them.
Phishing. (Wonder if it would have helped identify scammy URLs if the emails were in plain text, so that the phishers couldn’t put a URL in the message that was actually linked to an entirely different URL?)
An anonymous researcher with a lot of time on his hands apparently
shares the sentiment. In a newly published research paper, this
unnamed data junkie explains how he used some stupid simple
hacking techniques to build a 420,000-node botnet that helped him
draw the most detailed map of the Internet known to man. Not only
does it show where people are logging in, it also shows changes in
traffic patterns over time with an impressive amount of precision.
This is all possible, of course, because the researcher hacked
into nearly half a million computers so that he could ping each
one, charting the resulting paths in order to make such a complex
and detailed map. Along those lines, the project has as much to do
with hacking as it does with mapping.
After we reported the news about the First’s price drop, one
source familiar with Facebook employees’ thinking on Home said our
headline, “HTC’s Facebook Phone Is Clearly a Flop,” was “sadly,
very right.” Another source with knowledge of the HTC First sales
wouldn’t provide numbers, but did hint they weren’t exactly flying
off the shelves at AT&T stores.
Amy Chozick and Ben Protess, reporting for the NYT:
The news gathering technique appears more widespread than the
Goldman incident, which was first reported by The New York Post. A
preliminary analysis at Bloomberg revealed that “several hundred”
reporters had used the technique, a person briefed on the analysis
said. (Bloomberg employs more than 2,400 journalists worldwide. A
spokesman declined to comment on the analysis and said no
reporters had been fired.)
There are also fears that the monitoring may have gone beyond Wall
Street. Banking regulators at the Federal Reserve are examining
whether their own employees were subject to tracking by Bloomberg
reporters, according to people briefed on the matter. A
spokeswoman for the Fed declined to comment.
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There are a lot of clever ideas and nice designs in this iOS 7 “concept” by Philip Joyce of design firm Simply Zesty. But they’re only clever and nice in the abstract, as possible designs for a touchscreen phone interface. Nice and clever though they are, this would be a disaster as a new design for the actual iPhone. A new look is one thing (and we’re going to get it), but when you’re well established and have a large user base, as iOS does, you need to maintain familiarity. If users are asking “What is this? Where am I? Where’s all the stuff I’m used to?” it’s going to be a disaster. (Mac OS X 10.0 was just such a radical do-over, and it was successful in the long term. But the first few years were a slow and painful transition for existing Mac users. iOS doesn’t need that sort of jolt.)
And certain of Joyce’s details are oddly tone-deaf branding-wise. The shape of app icons is not going to change from round-cornered squares to sharp-cornered ones (or any other shape for that matter). Apple owns this shape; this shape says “iOS app” in everyone’s mind. It’s even printed right on the hardware home button of every iOS device. In fact it’s the only thing printed on the front face of every iOS device. And just look at the WWDC 2013 logo. (I’ve long thought we won’t see apps and an App Store for Apple TV until some future hardware revision of the product with a much-better remote control; it occurs to me now that that remote will surely have a home button with the universal empty app icon on it.) And his font choices — yikes. Frutiger (or whatever Frutiger-like typeface he’s using) makes the whole thing look more like a Windows Phone 9 concept than an iOS one. It’s like iOS re-imagined by someone who doesn’t like iOS. Hard for me to see how this is getting praised like this.
His animations and transitions do show how going “flatter” doesn’t necessarily mean eliminating playfulness, though.
In one instance, a Bloomberg reporter asked a Goldman executive if
a partner at the bank had recently left the firm — noting
casually that he hadn’t logged into his Bloomberg terminal in some
time, sources added.
Goldman later learned that Bloomberg staffers could determine not
only which of its employees had logged into Bloomberg’s
proprietary terminals but how many times they had used particular
functions, insiders said.
New iOS subscription-based magazine, from Jim Dalrymple and The Loop:
All of the articles published in The Loop magazine are exclusive
to the publication and written by some great writers. For
instance, the first issue includes articles from Matt Gemmell,
Dream Theater’s Jordan Rudess, Michael Simmons, Holly Winewell,
Peter Cohen and long time Apple analyst Ben Bajarin.
Good first issue. It’s fascinating to me to see magazine publishing emerge as a medium for small independents.
See, it’s people like Scoble who ruin it for regular people, the
masses who will determine whether Glass succeeds or winds up in
the land of the Apple Newton. His review was so over the top, so
up Google’s ass, so “I’m taking a freaking shower while wearing
them” (complete with photos,) that no normal, non-over-the-edge
Geek will want to come within a hundred miles of them.
So much for mass adoption. It’s the Segway effect. I was the first
person in NYC to own a Segway back in 2003. It. Was. Awesome. But
I was also on the damn thing every minute of every single day. I’m
not proud of that. I did back then to the Segway, what Scoble is
doing to Glass, today, and he should have learned from my
This is almost comically misguided. Glass will succeed or fail on its own merits, just as most mass market products do. The problem with Segway wasn’t that Peter Shankman drew attention to himself by riding it all over New York. The problem with Segway is that almost no one wanted a $4000 scooter, and the only people that Segway did appeal to were socially-maladjusted, self-centered, self-important, “Hey everybody, look at me! I’m using this ostentatious expensive new gadget!” blowhards like Peter Shankman.
But so, yes, I do think Glass is headed for the same fate as Segway.
A decline in revenue from the iPad Mini “is more on demand, while
price has been stable,” Pegatron Chief Executive Officer Jason
Cheng said. “Not just tablets, also e-books and games consoles,
almost every item is moving in a negative direction.”
Philip Elmer-DeWitt was curious about the placement of those quotation marks, and asked Cheng if he actually said that demand for the iPad Mini is down. He did not.
In 2005, author David Foster Wallace was asked to give the
commencement address to the 2005 graduating class of Kenyon
College. However, the resulting speech didn’t become widely known
until 3 years later, after his tragic death. It is, without a
doubt, some of the best life advice we’ve ever come across, and
perhaps the most simple and elegant explanation of the real value
We made this video, built around an abridged version of the
original audio recording, with the hopes that the core message of
the speech could reach a wider audience who might not have
otherwise been interested.
Good piece by Peter Nixey on the convoluted state of photo management with iCloud. I’d like to see something like this:
Get rid of photo streams. Make the camera roll a single photo
stream that shows up in iPhoto (on all devices). I want a single
camera roll that all devices feed into. I want to take photos,
queue them in my camera roll then pull them out as I organise
and sort them into my library. Let me explain: photos and videos
have two phases: (1) on the camera roll; (2) in my photo library.
In 2001, researcher Frédéric Brochet invited 54 wine experts to
give their opinions on what were ostensibly two glasses of
different wine: one red, and one white. In actuality, the two
wines were identical, with one exception: the “red” wine had been
dyed with food coloring.
The experts described the “red” wine in language typically
reserved for characterizing reds. They called it “jammy,” for
example, and noted the flavors imparted by its “crushed red
fruit.” Not one of the 54 experts surveyed noticed that it was, in
fact a white wine.
Almost certainly the most entertaining thing you’ll read today. A taste:
I haven’t been involved with McAfee anti-virus for 21 years. When
I ran the company the software was the best and least intrusive on
the market, and in 1991 we had 87% of the world market. What
happened after I left was none of my doing. As to name
association, I am a master at sullying my own name and, all things
considered, being associated with the worst software on the planet
ranks way down the pole. It’s barely a blip in the ocean of
associations — madman, paranoid, child molester, murderer, drug
addict, unstable, liar, to name but a few. Thank god I’m 67 and
will probably be too hard of hearing soon enough to have to listen
to them rattling around wherever I go. Amy, thankfully, did half
the job already by bursting my left eardrum when she tried to
shoot me in the head while I slept back in 2011.
You’ve almost certainly never heard of Peter Belanger, but you’ve
definitely seen his photographs. In fact, you may even see his
work every day, and it’s likely that you own some of his most
famous subjects. Belanger is the man behind some of Apple’s most
iconic product images, a San Francisco-based product photographer
at the top of his field.
It’s interesting that Jobs and Ive saw eye to eye on hardware
design and yet seemed far apart, at least in Jobs’s final years,
when it comes to software design. While Jobs was reportedly a
champion of rich Corinthian leather, Ive could only wince when
asked about it in an interview.
I’m confident that we’ll see less leather, wood, felt, and
animated reel-to-reel tapes in Apple’s future software products,
but the question remains: what does it mean for an application or
an OS to be true to itself?
Put another way, if the hardware should be true to its materials — glass, aluminum (hard not to spell it aluminium when discussing Ive), plastic — what is it that software should be true to? RGB pixels? I think not. I think the on-screen UI elements should (and under Ive, will be) simply true to themselves. Let a button be a button, and make it look good, with an emotional feel appropriate to its context and purpose. No need to overthink it.
About the Linked List
The Daring Fireball Linked List is a daily list of interesting links
and brief commentary, updated frequently but not frenetically. Call it
a “link log”, or “linkblog”, or just “a good way to dick around on the
Internet for a few minutes a day”.