June 09, 2008

iPhone day plus geekness both good and bad

Today was the big iPhone 2.0 announcement. Surprise of it all, some of the rumors were actually true, especially the $200 price, which I thought was rubbish. Announced today by the black turtlenecked Steve Jobs himself, the device indeed supports third-generation cellular technology (so called 3G, offering broadband like web surfing and data operation speeds), lots of cool new programs (some even free), and a nifty $199 price tag for the 8GB model. My one thought: how pissed are all those people that lined up and paid $500 or more for the original model? I'm betting they're pretty mad, unless they're too delirious with giddiness at the new features. iPhone people can be a tricky bunch to decipher.

In unrelated geek stuff as the clouds parted and the world heralded the arrival of the newly descended cellular God (iPhone), others things were in fact going on. Amazon had trouble simply keeping it's web storefront open and online, much todo was made over a Huffington Post blogger for some political and journalistic missteps she took while interviewing, and McDonalds said, "No more free Wifi" with those burgers. You'll have to rely on your Blackberrys, Palm Treos, and iPhones from now on. Phooey.

There were also some good ideas and bad ideas thrown around recently. Good idea: therer's a Palm OS emulator coming soon to the iPhone. Hey, that's a pretty neat idea. As people flock away from their Palm Treos and their Palm PDAs for the almighty iPhone, at least they can take their personal information manager (PIM) experience with them. All their data from the Palm, including the look and feel of the OS itself, will be emulated on the iPhone. Shrewd move on the part of StyleTap. Palm's dead, the iPhone isn't -- but there's still lots of legacy data out there to be looked after. Now on to the bad idea: apparently Staples is going to start selling self-destructing DVDs. You may have seen these before, circa 1998, in Circuit City and other stores.. Basically you pay something like $5.00 for the DVD, watch the movie, and then after a set period of time, usually a few days to a week, it's dead -- unwatchable. What to do then? Simply toss it out. Great for you, not so great for the environment. So let's look at the timing here: it's 2008, and all the major players are prepping or already offering legitimate movie downloads over the internet, Eventually this will displace DVD rentals just as surely as DVD displaced VHS. And it is at this very moment in time that Staples decides to resurrect the crippled-DVD format. Dumb.

And, since I can't leave you on that note, I'll leave you with some good things. First is the worlds first hard drive with built-in disaster protection, (see the pic below)

I'm still OK!

and next is the new graphic novel from writer Cory Doctorow, which just so happens to be FREE. Released under a Creative Commons license, you're free to grab this thing and do what you will with it -- but I'd suggest actually reading it, since I've heard good things about Cory. I do plan on reading it myself.

And, in the spirit of Apple's announcement today, I have just one more thing: a toaster made for hot dogs.

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