Tag: steve

Wax Woz to wow at Tussauds

Wozniak_photoMadame Tussauds’ San Francisco asked the world which tech icon should be immortalised in wax, at least until it melts and the apparently the world wanted a Wax Woz.

Competition was stiff among the ten nominees, with everyone from Elon Musk to George Lucas in the running. But hell, Steve Wozniak created Apple by inventing its computer hardware whereas the guy who invented the rounded rectangle is already there. Woz also did dancing with stars which is more than Steve Jobs ever managed.

It will take two to three months for sculptors to complete the process, starting with Wozniak holding completely still for a three-hour sitting session while 250 measurements are taken.

Woz is characteristically humbled by the whole thing.

“I am incredibly excited to be inducted into the Madame Tussauds family. I remember visiting the London Museum as a kid, and how cool it was to see Mark Knopfler’s figure in wax,” says Wozniak. “I can’t wait to see my figure next to Jobs – it’ll be just like old times.”

The only difference is that wax Jobs will be curiously silent.

Wozniak: Microsoft out-evolving Apple

Apple founder Steve Wozniak has shocked fanboys everywhere by saying that Microsoft is now more creative than their favourite fruity toy maker.

He also has told them that Steve Jobs didn’t have to be such a “bastard” which is also not the official Apple creed.

While this might be obvious to the rest of the world, Woz’s comments strike at the core of Apple’s reality distortion field.

In an interview with TechCrunch, Woz was open to the idea that Redmond might have been spending quite some time lately trying to create more “wow” products than Apple.

While he did not like the Surface particularly much, Woz was wowed by the idea that Microsoft was working on technology that made simultaneous translations.

He said that Apple had become too used to cranking out the newest iPhone and falling a little behind. Meanwhile Microsoft was sitting in its labs coming up with new ideas.

He admitted that this worries him greatly. He was also worried that Microsoft’s phone interfaces were so pretty that the company might have re-incarnated Steve Jobs.

Woz has also been a critic of Apple’s comedy voice recognition search app Siri saying that she needed an extreme makeover.

All this was a concern because Woz loved Apple. He said that Apple was losing ground because it has been making the same things it knows how to make. He said just improving things is not Apple-style innovation.

Woz was also critical of St. Eve of Jobs, saying that the patron saint of overpriced electronics did not really have to be the rugged bastard that he was.

It looks like people are starting to wake up to the idea that Apple, after the return of Jobs, was really a marketing rather than innovation panacea. 

Dying Steve Jobs treasured Gates letter

The dying Apple CEO Steve Jobs treasured a letter from Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates so much, he kept it by his death bed.

The pair fought each other for decades and Jobs slagged Gates off in his biography as an ‘unimaginative’ person who ‘ripped off’ other people’s ideas’.

Gates wrote Jobs a letter telling him how he should feel great about what he had done and the company he had built. 

Gates said that after Jobs snuffed it, he got a call from Mrs Jobs saying that Jobs really appreciated his letter.

“Look, this biography really doesn’t paint a picture of the mutual respect you had,” Laurene Powell told Gates. Gates said that Jobs had appreciated his letter and kept it by his bed, the former head Vole told the Telegraph. 

Bill Gates also said Jobs was an incredible genius who contributed immensely to the technology field.

Gates praised Jobs’ work on iPhones and iPads and he thought that both enjoyed each others’ work.

He admitted that the pair spent a lot of time competing and there were lots of times when Steve said critical things about him.

At times there were harsh examples which could develop into a litany. 

Music industry furious at iCloud

Apple’s new cloud music service has been slammed by the music industry for making piracy legal.

Software messiah Steve Jobs emerged from his sickbed to announce the iCloud, which will allow people to store their songs, calendar entries and other files on Apple’s servers.

But what has got the music industry’s goat is a tool called iTunes Match, which has been dubbed by some as a “music pirate amnesty”.

What the $24.95 a year service does is scan users’ hard drives for music, including files obtained illegally, and matches them with the authorised tracks in Apple’s iTunes library. It then makes a quality iTunes version of the tracks automatically accessible in the iCloud.

This service is only available to US users where piracy levels are low. The sorts of US Apple users are only going to want to stream their Coldplay collections anyway, and chances are they would have bought them.

Michael Speck, who ran the music industry’s landmark court case against file sharing network Kazaa told  the Syndey Morning Herald that Apple was “no better than the old p2p pirates”.

Hmm.

Using a metaphore, he said that Jobs was allowing punters to legally park their stolen cars. This would hardly encourage people to splash out and buy new ones, he said. True but then again Jobs usually parks where he likes. 

Speck said the $25 access fee for iTunes Match was giving Jobs a $25 fee for an alibi

Still a row between the two biggest reality distortion fields, Big Content, and Jobs’ Mob will be entertaining to say the least.

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Woz denies saying Android better than the iPhone

Apple co-founder and dancing queen Steve “Woz” Wozniak angered Apple fanboys when he was quoted in the Dutch paper De Telegraaf as saying that Android was better than the iPhone.

The quote said that “Android phones have more features,” which would help Google’s OS become the dominant smartphone platform.

The statement was greeted with wails of despair from Apple fanboys at Woz’s heresy and there were calls for him to be burnt at the stake for saying that anything was better than something fruity.

But, fortunately, Woz never said anything of the sort. He claimed that he gave the De Telegraaf reporter a lengthy demonstration of voice commands on iOS and Android.

He pointed out that Android offered the ability to say “Navigate to Joe’s Diner,” and suggested that Apple would catch up because it has bought Siri and Poly9.

Woz says he would “never” say that Android was better than iOS. “Almost every app I have is better on the iPhone.”

But it was not all orthodox comment. Woz did confess that Android would become more popular “based on what I’ve read.”

He expects Android “to be a lot like Windows.” He is not trying to put Android down, but he does not think it is a better OS than iOS.

“It can get greater marketshare and still be crappy,” he told Engadget .

These comments will be a great relief to Apple fanboys. Just as well that planned Cappuccino bombing of his house never took place. Still,  I would not want to be in the shoes of the De Telegraaf which, allegedly,  misquoted Woz. We would have thought that the offices of the rag will be picketed by angry black shirts waving their iPhones and demanding the editor be sacked. [You’re fired, Ed.]

Dell wants to copy Apple

Tin grey-box maker Michael Dell has been watching Apple’s Steve Jobs’ charging huge piles of cash for his machines and thought “I will have some of that”.

According to Reuters, Dell is getting a marketing makeover and wants to shed its “cheap as chips” image and push into the same market occupied by Apple.

Dell has announced that it will spend “hundreds and hundreds of millions” on an advertising campaign for its consumer business, to coincide with the launch of new products, including laptops with JBL speakers.

Paul-Henri Ferrand, chief marketing officer for Dell’s global consumer, and small and medium business division, said that the time has come where Dell will stop mentioning price as the single important aspect. Ferrand needs to shorten his job title, shorely.

He said Dell wanted to emphasise it had premium products, as well as cheaper options.

Among the product list is a small laptop that converts into a 10-inch tablet computer, as well as smaller tablet devices. We expect to see them all on Monday.

While other PC makers, including Dell, have been suffering from a bad case of low margins, they have been looking to Apple which charges much more for the same thing. Dell envies Apple.

But competing with Jobs means that you have to fight the battle on ground prepared by Apple and policed by his blackshirted teams of fanbois.

Steve Felice, president of the global consumer and small and medium business division, said that Apple is known for dictating what’s going to happen in the market place and what a consumer should buy.

“We’re at the opposite end of the spectrum, emphasising customer choice. It’s a bit premature to tell customers what they’re going to like and what they don’t like.”

So basically Dell is going to try and emphasise that it makes nice looking gear, just like Apple, but does not require your soul or require the loss of free will to do it.

Good luck with that. We think it is risky overestimating people’s desire for freedom. History is littered with examples of humanity wanting to outsource control to another. We doubt that Apple’s success is nothing to do with technology, but the craving of the socially challenged to find a peer group under the control of a charismatic leader.  And cut the length of those job titles, guys.

Amazon puts Kindle on Macs

Online retailer Amazon.com has unveiled “Kindle for Mac”, an application which lets regular Mac users buy and read books on their PC, instead of having to shell out for a Kindle ebook reader. Discerning Apple munchers who don’t want to spend money on a lesser-specced iPad can simply head over to www.amazon.com/kindleformac and download Kindle for Mac, for free.

Amazon.com claims the Mac bunch can have a looksee and choose from over 450.000 books and oh-so many New York Times bestsellers. Bookmarks and notes will be automatically synchronized over various devices, so if you hit page 417 of Umberto Eco’s “Foucault’s Pendulum” you won’t have to fiddle around on 23 various devices until you get there. Full text search and notes aren’t part of Mac for Kindle yet, but  those features will be added in the future.

Steve Jobs won’t be seen using Kindle for Mac, as he’ll be showcasing his flashy new iPad, trying to convince people how revolutionary his tablet and ebook reader will be. However, Amazon is going to put Kindle software on the iPad, so one might indeed catch a glimpse of Steve-O secretly reading the Financial Times on an app that doesn’t place the publisher into a walled garden surrounded by Apple watchtowers.