Don’t Let Him Go!

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There was a very disturbing report that came out last night that Apple may looking for a new CEO in lieu of how bad the company has been doing of late.  Tim Cook, the current CEO of Apple took over for Steve Jobs after his untimely death in October 2011.  Cook has been doing a great job running the company since, albeit stock investors who keep giving Apple terrible reviews, and die hard fans who can’t stand the company without Jobs.  But is the company really without Steve Jobs?

Apple, both fortunately, and unfortunately is still living under the shadow of Steve Jobs.  Not one product or service that has been announced or released has not been worked on by the late Jobs.  His influence is still very very much with the company, and that is what is hurting them right now.

This is Tim Cook’s company, and he is leading them in the most important time ever for Apple.  For the first time in years, Apple has competition everywhere and the very length of their innovation is being put to the test.  But the company can not be revitalized by Tim Cook until all the influence of Steve Jobs is gone.  But don’t get me wrong, I am the first person to come to the aid of Jobs and how incredible he was, but he’s not alive anymore, and a company can not be run by a dead person.

Tim Cook is trying, and making strides by firing Scott Forstall, who was Steve Jobs’s top designer and advisor.  But as of late, Apple’s software design has been looking stale, and has been rapidly falling behind the competition.  In the only major move Cook has made since being CEO, he fired Forstall and rearranged the rest of the top Apple advisors.  SInce this Apple has been quiet, not releasing anything, and having no news come out of Cupertino on what is going on.  This can only mean that we can expect something big.

It’s not fair to Cook that someone, somewhere thought it was ok to publish a post that he was on the way out.  I would say to give the guy the summer.  He has just restructured all of the top executives and now let’s see if he can fix Apple.  Yes, the company is sinking, and falling quite fast right now.  But Apple has some big things up it’s sleeve, all courtesy of Tim Cook.  Just as Steve Jobs had the same opportunity in the early 2000’s to right Apple, Cook deserves the same.

Apple Has Lost It’s Lust

Today is a sad day on planet earth.  For the first time in three years, Apple stock has dropped below $400 a share.  At this time last year Apple stock was barely over $400 a share but the tune was a little different then since the stock seemed to be rising at an exponential pace with no signs of stopping.  But then it did.

Around September, October of last year it seemed that Apple could not be stopped.  The stock was rising faster than ever, well over $700 a share and they were releasing products and services at rapid fire.  But that was then, and this is now.

After Apple overhauled almost every product in it’s arsenal last year it became apparent that they had lost their touch, and the once glistening Apple had lost it’s shine.  Apple had lost their innovation that had made them famous, and has become predictable.  I can sit here confidently right now and tell you with 90% certainty what the next iPhone is going to be.  Not because I have inside information but because since the iPhone 3GS the average person can pretty easily predict what the next iPhone will look like.

Thinner… Lighter… Faster…

Three words that have become synonymous with basically every iPhone and every Apple product.  But is there something wrong with that? No… But there certainly isn’t anything right with it either.  The next iPhone will be at least two of those three things and one more feature, just like the iPhone 4S was an iPhone 4 with faster processor, better camera, and Siri.  Every iPad also seems to get lighter and faster.  Apple has started their own predictable trend and people are starting to lose interest.  Even Apple die hards such as myself.  I will still watch every product announcement, and probably buy most of the products, and without a doubt they will be a lot better than the previous generation, but that doesn’t mean that I’m not disappointed with them.

Apple needs to find its footing again.  And yes I understand that this will be no easy task, especially with increased competition from Samsung and Google, but this is no excuse to fall into this lame product cycle.  Apple usually wows me every year, and it makes me proud to be an Apple fanboy, but pretty soon that is going to stop.  Every year I get less and less excited to be an Apple lover, and this year especially is no different.  

So I guess what I am saying is more of a plea than a call to arms.  This can be done Apple, and I am begging you to regain your footing, because then, hands down, Apple will be the best tech company in the world.

To Case, or Not To Case

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This is something that I’ve long struggled with, and I want to know what you guys think about it, and that is whether to use cases or not on my devices.  Like I’ve mentioned before, I’ve owned every iPhone and iPad, as well as countless iPods, Macs, and other devices.  One thing I always wonder is whether I should put a case on the device or not.  I’ve struggled the most on this with my phone.  To me at least, I think the iPhone is beautiful, and one of the best looking devices ever made, along with most of the products that Apple makes.  So why would I want to put a case on that or cover it up?  Simply put, I don’t want anything to happen to them because they are so beautiful.  But then of course by putting a case on for protection then it ruins how good looking the phone is, just so it stays that way… But if I’m not going to be looking at it because it is in a case, what’s the point?

I definitely understand the protection point, because no one wants to drop there phone and see it break so a case will protect it.  The downside to me for that is how thick and heavy it makes the phone and how ugly the cases generally are.  They seriously look like Crayola crayons.

Other people put shells on their phones as “reflections of their personality.”  I love looking at these cases because they are always awesome, and people usually pick cool ones.  The downside here is they provide no protection whatsoever, and usually make the phone uncomfortable and don’t fit well.

There is no right or wrong answer to this.  I’ve had a case for all my phones and iPads and usually wind up taking them off and on every other day for different reasons.  Computers I always have a carrying case but an actual shell case… Making your computer look like a lollipop is just dumb, and there is no argument there.  So please, let me know in the comments what you think, do you use a case on your devices, and if so why or why not, and what kind.

Lawsuits Hurt Us, But Should They?

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It’s no secret to anyone no that lawsuits are funning ramped in the technology world.  Companies like Apple, Google, Samsung, Amazon, Facebook, and countless others have just been suing each other’s pants off in the last few years.  These lawsuits do something but hurt people and consumers especially.

Technology used to be pretty simple, when one company invents something, everyone else copies it, or improves on it.  This is called competition.  This seems easy that competition is good for consumers because it improves the technology we get, but with the lawsuits in recent years, consumers have been nothing but hurt.

The most famous case in recent memory is between Samsung and Apple where Apple was awarded $1 billion, even though that may be changed later.  This case is a prime example how the years of competition have died and now all companies want to do is grow independently from each other.  For those who are not familiar with the case, Apple sued Samsung over their line of Galaxy phones saying that they are direct copies of the iPhone.  I don’t want to get too much into the case but I watched and followed the entire thing and it was apparent that Samsung had in fact copied Apple, and the court saw it the same way since Apple was awarded the win.

But this is not about the outcome of the case, but rather what has happened because of the case.  The major $1 billion win by Apple in court showed the rest of the tech industry that innovation can no longer be copied and improved but designed from the ground up.  Although very cliche all I could think was that technology was going to suck from here on out, and so far I have been right.

A few years ago technology was moving faster than ever, and it looked like the sky was the limit.  One company would release a new feature, and another would make it better, forcing the original creator of the technology to rework it.  And the winners in all of this intense competition, was us.  Consumers made out better than everyone and we were getting products and services that were being improved everyday.  Sadly though, that time has past. All companies are concerned about now is being sued by other companies and just frankly it’s sad.  All I want to say to Tim Cook and some of the other CEO’s is get over it.  You made something great, and they made it better… So go back to the drawing board and make it even better, instead of just calling your lawyers on speed dial.

No More Maps While Driving?! What Else Can’t I do?!?!

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I was reading the news online again the other day and I stumbled upon something absurd that ofcourse has come out of the state of California.  California is always famous for making the dumbest rules regarding technology.  More recently this has allowed driver-less cars on the road as well as really stupid laws involving cell phones.

The law passed last week was that you can no longer use your phone for maps while driving.  This is absolutely absurd!!!  One of the main thing that I use my phone for is navigation, and it’s one of the best features that smartphones have these days.  To have constantly updated maps and traffic is very important to navigation and makes for a seamless and easy driving experience.So why take that away?  What is different about the GPS unit that a phone doesn’t have, why is one safe but not the other.  What I have found is that California just does not have a good explanation for any of this and it’s extremely aggravating that a state things that they can just make crazy laws like this.

In an effort to what the state things is making drivers on the road safer, it’s actually more dangerous.  I attach my iPhone through the bluetooth in my car every time I am in it, and there is no safer and betteImageouldn’t even want to think about the consequences.  Always tying to unsuccessfully work the darn thing while I was driving.

I hope this severely backfires in the face of the California legislation, forcing them to change the law!

Why Are Tech Companies So Dumb?

classroom technology in english language teaching 2Why are tech companies so dumb?  This may not seem like such a direct question so let me backtrack a bit…

To me and most people at least, technology is about productivity and usefulness.  You want something that is easy to use without a lot of effort and will get the most done.  You want to be able to type a document on one computer and have it available on another one with no effort from you.  You want to be able to look at Facebook through an app on your phone and have it give you information quickly and exactly what you want to see.  So why don’t tech companies do this…

Last week I had to get a new printer cause my last one just stopped working.  I had a warranty so HP sent me there brand new whatever the heck it was called printer.  This new printer was like nothing I had ever seen, it had Facebook and Twitter pre installed, allowed you to post pictures directly to Flickr, and read the New York Times.

Hold up… Did I just say that my PRINTER had all of those things.  You must be absolutely kidding me.  There are a lot of things that I think about that can be improved in a printer, but not ONE was something that was added by HP to my new printer.  How about printing faster, make my ink last longer, something that will actually improve my life.  The ability to read the NYT on my printer does not improve my life at all and actually it’s absurd.  Everyone I have told this story to has given me the same reaction, that these features are absurd in a printer, which makes me wonder… Who the hell at HP thought this was a good idea?!  Why is the 10 seconds a day that I spend looking at my printer now consumed by NYT articles and a twitter feed?

This leads me to my main point about what tech companies are so dumb?  Instead of Facebook making a better app today, or making the features of their website work better, they decided to make a phone OS.  No one wants this!!!  There are rumors going around that Apple and Samsung are going to make “Smart” watches soon.  No one wants that either!

Now I’m not saying that any of these products wouldn’t be cool and totally awesome to show off, but they are ridiculous.  Yes it’s cool that my printer can do all those things, but none of them make my life better.

Technology is already consuming everyone enough, that’s why we need products and services that integrate and work better.  Not more features that make our lives bloated.  Companies are just getting dumb in general.  They should be listening to consumers and planning products and services accordingly, instead of frying our technological lives with bloatware, and unnecessary crap!

People Who Don’t Update Grind My Gears

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Being such a geek and a nerd, I have a lot of pet peeves when it comes to technology.  Especially when it comes to how people interact with it.  I understand that not everyone can be as tech-savy as I am but there are a few things that are pretty simple that everyone should do.

Nothing pisses me off more in theworld than when I see an iPhone with 50+ updates on it.  Like what the hell?!?!?!? Developers word hard to update their apps and you can’t take 10 seconds out of your day to update it?  And it isn’t really about the developers, it’s just about people being lazy.  I have a friend that comes to me probably every week because she is having problems with her iPhone.  And every week I tell her the same thing… It’s because you don’t update it.  It is so mind boggling to me that she can’t get that through her thick skull.  Like seriously, Apple is on iOS 6.1.3 right now for their software, and this girl is on friggin iOS 4.0.1.  Like don’t complain tome that your phone doesn’t work when you are honestly two whole years of updates behind.

Even more so is app updates.  Something that doesn’t even take 15 seconds out of your day, and you’re too damn lazy to just press the update button.  I’ve heard thousands of excuses ranging from I liked the way the app worked already, to it takes too much time and doesn’t do anything.  Like are you kidding me?!?!?!?!  If it didn’t do anything developers wouldn’t work so hard to push them out.  Updates make things better, fix bugs,and add new features, and you would have to be an idiot to think that they don’t.  Seriously don’t complain that your apps and your phone isn’t working if you don’t update anything, you have no right.

In the end it’s pretty simple, just update your apps.  There is no downfall to doing it.  If there is a bug with the update, it’s usually fixed within the day anyway.  It’s honestly just ridiculous if you don’t do it.  And if you don’t update, please don’t come crying to me.