Saturday, September 29, 2007

Civil Servants are one cool bunch!

I got busy lately and not much time to blog... until next Thursday. But some friend sent me this one and I think I should share it...

A young man married a beautiful woman who had previously divorced 10 husbands. On their wedding night, she told her new husband to "Please be gentle; I'm still a virgin".

"What?" said the puzzled groom. "How can that be if you've been married ten times.?"

"Well, husband#1 was a Sales Representative; he kept telling me how great it was going to be.

"Husband # 2 was in Software Services; he was never really sure how it was suppose to function; but he said he'd look into it and get back with me.

"Husband # 3 was from Field Services; he said that everything checked out diagnostically but he just couldn't get the system up.

"Husband # 4 was in Telemarketing; even though he knew he had the order, he didn't know when he would be able to deliver.

"Husband # 5 was an Engineer, he understood the basic process but he wanted three years to research, implement, and design a new state of the-art method.

"Husband #6 was from Administration; he thought he knew how but he wasn't sure whether it was his job or not.

"Husband # 7 was in Marketing; although he had a product, he was never sure how to position it.

"Husband # 8 was a Psychiatrist; all he did was talk about it.

"Husband # 9 was a Gynecologist; all he did was look at it.

"Husband # 10 was a Stamp Collector; all he ever did was........... God I miss him.

"But now that I've married you, I'm so excited".

"Wonderful", said the husband, "but why?

"You’re with the "GOVERNMENT"... This time I KNOW I'M going to get SCREWED."

Sunday, September 23, 2007

iWoz stupid

I often got irritated and wrote about this weirdo in the past. It all started when I was a monkey's ass to go buy his awful autobiography that made me vommit after reading the first few pages where he kept braggin', on and on, about how he was the smartest dude in the universe since Adam and Eve. He's now left out of Apple's current fame in the world of tech lovers and he won't miss an opportunity to pass an 'exclusive' interview to some pathetic reporter who looks to make a buck with some cheap sensation news. The latest: an article in some sort of trade magazine I never heard before, taking the piss again on his ex-comrades for the 100 dollar store credit early iPhone adopters received, following iPhone's recent 200 dollar commercial price drop. He goes:

"If I bought it and gave it as a gift they get the discount. Why don't you just take my receipt and give me the money back? And of course it always comes back to Apple Store credit. So instead of getting $100 back you are getting $50 back sort of. It is very optimal to the company. I feel badly about the situation for everyone. I don't think Apple should have even done it. Maybe a very much more gradual price reduction, $50 at first or find ways to bundle it into a savings on your account."

There's more of that garbage widow-moaning but let me just comment on the above.

Above all, and let's get this out of the way, in a free world suppliers have the god-given right to change their prices anytime and for as much their heart desires. Apple dropped them on the iPhone... great for those prospective buyers; however, all early adopter pussies who were showing off their new iTouch-dildos to friends and enemies got real crossed. We got penalized, they cried, for being loyal! Bullshit! I 'll give you another example. Leica brought out recently a new top of the line digital camera that it priced north of a cool 5K USD, body alone. Recently they announced they will raise (!) their price. I haven't heard anyone complain... especially not those dudes who were standing in line to pay good money for the first pieces that hit the stores.

Anyway, following an irrational public outcry, Jobs gave back 100 bucks in Apple store credit to those early moron show-offs. Master iShow-off Woz bought 20 phones but he didn't bother to go claim his 2K yet. Instead he chooses to make multiples of that sum by giving cheap back-stubbing interviews to tabloid reporters. It's exactly here that Woz resorts into Alan Greenspan-like financial math. He says... 100 bucks in store credit cost actually 50 bucks to Apple... Where is the logic?

About the time the iPhone was launched, some moron analyst opened up a device and broke it into its parts. He found that the total production cost to Apple in third party components was about 50 percent of an iPhone's retail price. So the conclusion was that Apple made 50% margin on each iPhone sold. Of course, no marketing and distribution costs were taken into account here, not even the two to three year R&D cost they had. If they end up selling tens of millions pieces of course, the initial development cost will eventually be trivialized (not counting though fresh new iPhone versions R&D expenditure). In other words, Apple had a snowball's chance in hell to make 50% gross off those initial sales... No way!

But let's assume, for argument's sake, that Apple nevertheless maintained a gross 50 percent on each iPhone sale. Fine. Good for them and their shareholders! That means, when you paid them 500 or 600 bucks last July-August, they still maintained no more than 250 to 300 bucks as a gross margin. If they now decided to pass back 100 bucks store-credit to each early adopter, it's vis-à-vis those 250-300 margin that they were setting the size of the store-refund. Not the full fledged 500-600 bucks retail figure!

Now then, if you go use their 100 buck credit in their stores, you could buy anything with it. Like for instance, third party products that they carry. Their margin on such items is minimal... ( like the songs they sell on iTunes) so you can't assume that their offered refunds will be used to buy products carrying another 50% margin! No way! They still might, and it would just be the fair thing to do, if each buyer spent the store-credit on an equivalent margin product of theirs. On the average refund-users would probably do. If you wanted to 'punish' them though (the US is no short of certified a-holes), you'll go find the lowest margin item they carry in order to sweat each penny of your refund-bon out of their margin... that wouldn't be fair though, however, I believe Woz being capable of doing just this. In other words, make the 100 dollar credit look like a 200 dollar to Apple itself. If you are a member of Woz's club, A-hole Anonymous, just go do the same and feel good about yourself. You would do us a much bigger favor though if you went out to shut the fuck up your chairman's (iWoz) gob first.

BTW, I am seriously thinking of claiming back full refund of Woz's biography book, as well. Readers should be paid instead to read more than 10 pages of that trash.

Cool laughs from the Russian bear...

The Nobel prize of stupidity...

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Learn from the greatest...

Frank Lloyd Wright.

Vista on an iMac...

Yep! It's true... people have a hard time believing it, but it's true. Not only true but it's also faster than your average PC. And it does Aero. Click-on the pic and see the transparencies and all. Trust me on this... I been there! All fine and it does it kinda slick... Only... (dammit, there is always a friggin' 'yes but'...) only, I was saying... it crashes. Big time... I mean, with blue friggin' screen of death and all... you get memory dumps and a scary character based screen as if you were busy on a retarded IBM 3270, for cryin' out loud. As if your average user had a clue what's goin' on! What were they thinkin'? What's so wrong with those MSFT developers? Good thing though, Vista seems to recover on the next restart... not like the good old pre-Vista Windows versions that meant your system went to the cleaners... and you had to start all over again with installs and recovery, if that last ever worked, so to say... I reckon (just a gut-feel by seeing when crashes occur) it all depends on the hardware on your specific Mac; I suspect the graphics card is screwing this up. I am saying this because same Vista appears to be quite stable on a Macbook. But not on the iMac shown here. Eventually, I decided to abandon good lookin' Aero and to fall back to the Windows classic look-and-feel. Other than its ugly old look, this one seems to crash less. I guess with Leopard around the corner, they may well improve their Windows graphics drivers and maybe the crashes will go away. You see, no software developers are God smart. Apple's are close but still... they all make mistakes... think of my adventures with OSX crashing everytime I looked at the screen as a result of their recent bug-fixin' update...

Anyways, this WinMac marriage seems fine... and you know what? If you are taken by the Mac slick and super-sexy hardware, but you want to run Windows on this (what an idiot), don't forget that if one solution gives you some trouble (Bootcamp for instance, like shown here) you can always try Parallels or the VMware equivalent. It might cost you a few bucks more compared to the free Bootcamp, but what the heck... your spouse or girlfriend also spends a fortune on the hairdresser, right? :-)

Friday, September 21, 2007

Why bother?

A 25 year old kid from Turku, Finland (jeez, brings back memories, I had a penpal out there 35 years ago, a cute little blonde), who gets thru daily life under the name of Lauri Taimila (why all these Finish names sound like 'shemale'?), and admits he wants to get laid (honest, read his profile) came up with a Linux GUI that looks much like Apple's OSX. Well done kid... when you are as young as you are and you are looking to build an ICT career, this an an excellent waste of time. It might even get you some nerd horny broads at you doorstep.

Should the rest of us, loyal OSX users care about? It could be good for all of us Mac geeks that the Linux community spreads the word and people discover the fabulous OSX desktop GUI after all. Whether we are going to run Parallels Linux and test his code to see for ourselves? Maybe not, or maybe yes, depending how much more time we are left to live...

Take a look at this kid's profile photograph as well. Looks like ' that an iPhone in your pocket or are you just happy you saw me...?' Priceless...


Check-out this broad... if you ask me, don't get fooled by her good looks and blonde hair... the broad has got great brains too. This clip is the latest she brought up and one that had some great viral penetration into the Internet community. First time I saw her was in another great viral gig about hundreds of pages long ATT bill for using the iPhone. Cool... check her out.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

I told you so...

Few blogs ago I told you about the frauds governing Greece nowadays and about how contemporary Greeks, if they managed to elect again the same party to government, actually deserved what they were about to get...

I believe I got it right this time. I am not just a cranky old fart moaning all the time. I think I know better. Not even a week after the conservative party declared victory in last Sunday's elections a big time fraud scandal is on the making.

It appears that, whilst Bouloukos (their arrogant fatso PM) has been promising that the policy of distributing devastated forrest territories to fraudulous property developers would not apply if he got elected, guess what: his own Ministry of Finance has been selling out devastated territories to property developers from the back door. At the same time, the EC morons who naively and with little control distribute hundreds of millions of our own taxpayer money to these frauds are about to ship to them no less than 600M € ($840M) to help with the 'restoration of the territories back to their forrest state and contribute to the protection of endangered species' (you wish). In other words, (shitloads of) hard cash finding its way into the wrong pockets and into some cool Swiss bank accounts. Now tell me, are these Eurocrats stupid? corrupt? or both? the latter gets my vote...

Anyways, as I said, Greeks deserve what they get. The ruling party massively used all known tricks of the trade (Bouloukos learned his lesson well from uncle Kostas) to convince 43% of a moron electorate to vote for them again and those Greek idiots trapped right into it. This country is in shambles. The Socialists had a historic opportunity to beat the conservatives out of government for good but instead they f*cked up real big. One of the reasons is their stubborn decision to maintain that gray and charmless character Giorgos Papandreou, son of legendary Andreas, as head of the Party. The man looks so sad and sexless. The kind of dude that triggers Omer Simpson into a loud cry of 'Boring!' Nevertheless, they all pretend he's the best money can buy. Like the Emperor's clothes sort of thing. About time they send the poor sod to retirement... once a loser, always a loser. In the meantime, the current generations will have to put-up again with four more years of fraude, incompetence and national disasters.

For sure, there is no way I am going back there anytime soon... Belgium is not the role model for clean politics either but, at least in our coalition governments, one party checks-upon another and Greek type frauds are more difficult to get thru... or, are they?!?!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Sounds like real fun...

Have you folks heard of this? Well, it seems like another great waste of time when there's nothing else on TV. What's it then? It appears that Blogger developers had some time ago a useless but nevertheless quite a fun idea to stream continuously all the pictures posted on blogs (like this one) that use the Blogger posting environment... as we all know, Blogger belongs to Google, the kids with the deep pockets. Initially, they used the app in-house for fun but someone came up with the idea to go public. And there we are... it's kinda cool, really! I mean, it's much cooler than watching Fox or CNBC, for all I care... The Global village in all its glory.  As I am just posting this a great shot popped-up... a photoshoped nude with cracks; take your click-on for more detail! Great stuff from an Iranian artist of all people (how he's still out of prison with work like this is a mystery...). 

To update or not to update...

Let me tell you... if you got a brand new iMac and you feel proud as if you won the lottery, beware of its recent updates... I got me one iMac, 24 inch, 2.8G Core 2 Dual core, half a tera disk, a few weeks ago and the thing is flyin'! I mean, really! I need to push it down to touch my desktop but it keeps floating in the air! One sweet thing! The best piece of equipment I ever spoiled myself with... Until the latest iMac software update 1.1 to fix, soit disant*, some serious bugs...  I've been using Macs for long and I need to think hard to remember when I ever had the machine crash on me with its gray screen of death... Let alone hang-up on me... that's to say, stop functioning and responding to nothing else than power-off. Until I did that update... Of course the update is only intended for iMac users of the latest and brightest iMacs, those who look like iPhones on steroids... I sure lost a huge part of my confidence in Apple developers with this... first time it ever happened to me... and there is always a first time for everything. The system hangs up like your worst nightmare. You hardly dare do anything and it hangs. You are about to bloody login in a password field and it hangs. You go over the dock to launch an app and it hangs... we are not talking rocket science here... just simple finder and mouse scrolling stuff. The Internet community hasn't mentioned that latest incident yet and I hate to believe it's only me. Some people suggested damaged RAM. But this damaged RAM (if true) seems to pass all hardware tests with honors and it doesn't seem to bother when it runs... Bootcamp Vista with aero and all. So, it's the bleedin' update that did it. I felt it right after I updated. Anyways, I moved my system onto another Mac and did a clean install back in my Mac partition (I left Vista in peace). Wiped out the entire bleedin' Mac partition and did a really Clean Install. Initially, it seemed to work flawlessly... like the day I opened the box. Well done dude. Until I decided to repeat the updates. Updates for iWeb, their new slim aluminum keyboard, a security update, 'theiMac update and a Apple Pro Apps update. Oh yes, and a QT compatibility update... all ducks in a row. I proved my point. Once the system restarted all hanging habits came back in a flash... just heard a disk spinnin' and spinnin' in the background and the system would hang again. I even had it hang on me when I pushed my chair back once... an update with... telekinesis properties... well done el Jobso. Finally I decided to redo the system install, 'archive and install' this time as I was pretty awfully bored to be restoring all my account related details again. It works fine now and I swear I'd better jump off the building than install any bleedin' iMac 'bug fixin' (bug creatin' rather said) update ever again. Spread the word folks, if you know of anyone who's at the same spot as I.

* local dialect where I live, meaning 'supposedly'

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Back to the future!

First time I read about it I thought it was a joke. Service Pack 1 (SP1) of Vista will install Windows XP back on a user's computer. Go figure... you waited for so long to buy new gear because you've been waiting for wonderkid Asta La Vista and 9 months later you are on your way back to XPerience...

Don't even think of complaining about it... here's the thing, if you check the small print on your software license agreement you'll see that it is in Microsoft's right to even deliver to you Windows 3.11 (at least that one worked...).

Between you and I, I still don't get it. A 50 Billion dollar company struggling for years to bring out a version of their OS with all the bells and whistles (you wish) and deciding to reinstall the previous gen OS because users have been complaining? What's next then? MS-DOS?

Well done monkey boy! I can't wait to tell Rita (the wife) about that... she's been cursing me ever since I put Vista on her box. I hate to admit that she might be right this time...

Alan's age of turbulence...

Brand new from the Press, Greenspan's memoir is available since this last Monday in printed and audio format. Lazy as I am, and having had none at all bedtime stories during my infant years, I have (again) purschased the audio version of this book from iTunes and enjoy the storytelling ever since. The book introduction is read by his Holliness himself and it's a great pity that the entire book is not read by him as well. He's 81 years old and he still can't find 10 free hours to read to us his own memoirs, loud and clear. He's still too much in love with his dearest and much younger Andrea, who once called him the sexiest man on the Planet... I guess she keeps him busy until death do them part... propably this ain't gonna be anytime soon... ol' men above 80, getting laid, get easy hundred and more... hands down. Alan, lucky bastard... I bet you when they took that shot for the cover of his book (check this out, here above), they used Andrea 'faking the little birdie' behind the camera, in her Valentine's baby-doll... Wow! Like Mark T. said... age is a matter of the mind... if you don't mind... it doesn't matter!

I haven't read (listened) much of the book yet but the introduction, which I just 'experienced' thru my loudspeakers, creates an expectation of a rather convenient reading. It appears much easier to understand his writing than we are typically used of him and his quotes. I am not a trained economist and all I know about finance and economics I learned at an average quality business school 27 years ago and... in the streets. My reminiscence of Alan Greenspan when he was still active as Chairman of the Fed is of someone who was expressing himself in a sort of English sounding lingo that was beyond comprehension. I remember him when he made formal statements about the decisions taken by the Fed, that it took a few cum laude Harvard PhDs in Economics to decipher his hidden messages. He himself said once: “I guess I should warn you, if I turn out to be particularly clear, you've probably misunderstood what I've said.” Legendary attributes characterising the state of the investor community as 'irrational exubberance' remained engraved in the minds of so many. A couple of statements like this and Alan the Great was able to send the market tumbling downhill...

He's been a remarkable individual who dominated the entire world of Finance and Economics for the largest part in the last 15 years of the last century. New Yorker, stemming out of a combination of Hungarian and Romanian Jewish immigrants, the Greenspans and the Goldsmiths, turned into a career economist after having tried to be a jazz musician first! Like he said, the one common thing he had with Bill Clinton was the saxophone (and their love for sexy broads, I might add...)

Another quote of his that I find right on the money, honest, is about education: “To succeed, you will soon learn, as I did, the importance of a solid foundation in the basics of education - literacy, both verbal and numerical, and communication skills. ”

For the courageous among you who'll dare read his age of turbulence... enjoy the goodies!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Bureaucrats rule...

I thought we only had those double-digit-IQ android Mandarins in the EC/CE alone, but as it appears they pop-up everywhere, even in the smooth French speaking part of Canada. Read on and then compute the total amount of stupidity of Canadian city bureaucrats, aka 'cover-your-ass frigtards'... Use simple arithmetics, plus and minus, times and divided by (maybe some exponentiation is useful here too).

"Planning to open one of their sleek superstores at 1321 Ste. Catherine St. W., Apple Inc. is investing heavily, as always, in design. It would be a nice touch, the company thought, to simplify the look of the shop by getting rid of the three parking meters out front.

So Apple made Ville-Marie borough an offer: "three meters, $3 an hour, so many hours a week, carry the 3 .... we'll give you about $35,000 to cover the lost revenue from those meters over five years. How about it?"

The Apple zealots who refer to a certain enormous West Coast software company as "the evil empire" can know nothing of Ville-Marie bureraucrats. The default mode in Montreal is "non," and that's what the borough promptly said to Apple, La Presse reported..."

read full story...

If you wanna show-off as a geek, then be one, first.

In general, tech-geeks may look ugly and nerdy with pimples and stuff, but at least they know how to put their geeky tools in use. Pity though, all the scores of those 'cool geek look-alikes' that rush to buy the latest and brightest gadget to show-off to pals and broads alike have got to find out the hard way... read this screamer:

"SAN FRANCISCO, Sept. 9 — When Neil Dingman recently went on a European vacation, he took his iPhone with him with no intention of using it much. In fact, for the 14 days he was there, he used it only a handful of times and had expected to see just a small increase in his next bill for roaming charges.

Instead, he was charged $852.31.

As it turned out, the cellphone carried by Mr. Dingman, a mortgage consultant in Minneapolis, made calls on a European data network several times each hour to check for e-mail messages. Because he didn’t deactivate the feature that automatically checks for new e-mail messages, during Mr. Dingman’s trip through Italy, Croatia and Malta, the phone went to retrieve e-mail more than 500 times.

Other iPhone users have felt the sting of high roaming charges with their iPhone, too. Some, like Mr. Dingman, are unaware that they need to disable the e-mail feature; others are billed erroneously; still others misunderstand the explanation of charges they are given by AT&T customer service representatives. Many of them are complaining to the company or on blogs...."

read full story...

Thank Goad, we got some humor folks...

Watch this... it's a scream!

El Fatso Woz continues to be an embarrassment

The man loves to show-off and falls from one blunder to another. I am not the only one to believe that... see here. I copied part of this article below:

"Apple (AAPL) founder Steve Wozniak is off-message with respect to the rationale for Apple's iPhone price cut:

Stephen Wozniak, the co-founder of Apple, told The IBC Daily that he thinks Apple's decision to drop the price of the iPhone by up to 50% only two months after it went on the market was "an accidental error" and that he "hasn't talked to anyone who thinks it was a good idea."

The man who is often called the "other Steve" in reference to his more high-profile friend and Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, Wozniak said he "feels badly" about the early price cut because of all the people who had only recently shelled out $600 for the new iPhone. ..."

read full story...

Cheapness eats-up the buck

The title is a free translation from Greek of a popular saying about the law of supply and demand. The lower the price the more consumers will empty their pockets to buy the goodies. I thought of that when I saw this article:

"After a week of negative customer reaction to the surprise cut in the price of its iPhone, Apple Inc. said it reached its goal of selling one million of the devices almost three weeks ahead of schedule.

Apple, of Cupertino, California, said it sold the one millionth iPhone Sunday, 74 days after the device was released in the U.S. June 29.

Chief Executive Steve Jobs contrasted the iPhone's rapid sales with the adoption of the iPod, Apple's hugely popular digital music player, which Mr. Jobs said took two years to reach the one-million sales mark.

The announcement came after a rough week for Apple. On Sept. 5, Mr. Jobs cut the price on the eight-gigabyte version of the iPhone by $200 to $399. The company also lowered the price on the 4GB version by $200, but said it will only sell that device while supplies last.

The unexpected price cut spooked investors, who feared it was a sign that iPhone sales were behind expectations. Apple's shares fell more than 5% that day.

Mr. Jobs later said the company would give a $100 Apple store credit to customers who paid full price and weren't already covered by an Apple rebate.

Apple didn't immediately return calls for comment about whether the price cut spurred iPhone sales last week."

This is the end...

A very interesting article at the Economist about the useless central administration(s) of a non-country in Central Europe called Belgium... You don't know whether you have to laugh or sob while reading this... you better laugh if you are not native Belgian though...

"A RECENT glance at the Low Countries revealed that, nearly three months after its latest general election, Belgium was still without a new government. It may have acquired one by now. But, if so, will anyone notice? And, if not, will anyone mind? Even the Belgians appear indifferent. And what they think of the government they may well think of the country. If Belgium did not already exist, would anyone nowadays take the trouble to invent it?

Such questions could be asked of many countries. Belgium's problem, if such it is, is that they are being asked by the inhabitants themselves. True, in opinion polls most Belgians say they want to keep the show on the road. But when they vote, as they did on June 10th, they do so along linguistic lines, the French-speaking Walloons in the south for French-speaking parties, the Dutch-speaking Flemings in the north for Dutch-speaking parties. The two groups do not get on—hence the inability to form a government. They lead parallel lives, largely in ignorance of each other. They do, however, think they know themselves: when a French-language television programme was interrupted last December with a spoof news flash announcing that the Flemish parliament had declared independence, the king had fled and Belgium had dissolved, it was widely believed..."

Read rest of story

Saturday, September 8, 2007

I, Cringely, and the rest of you...

Born in 1953, same year as I (a very good year -you wish- Jozef Stalin died), Bob Cringely is a rather known Press figure specializing in reporting about computers. A few years back he started a program of televised interviews with some of the finest and greatest of the industry. That led to a dozen interesting interviews with people that you'd be otherwise very unlikely to meet, let alone hear them talk about hot stuff.

I watched some of those interviews, with Billy Joy (after he left Sun), the kid that started Paypal, O'Reilly (the books guy), few of the early fathers of the Internet, and some other Industry figureheads (even the other Steve, el fatso Wosniak). Great initiative but it stopped there. Bob wasn't cool enough to be able to convince his producers for more.

Anyway, he's got his own site on the Net where he regularly publishes opinion articles.

In his latest contribution he takes the piss on His Jobness. He talks about Steve Jobs the a-hole that everyone loves to hate. His bitterness about Jobs dates from ten years ago when he set out to do a double act interview for Vanity Fair of Gates and Jobs talking about each other, in two separate takes. After having talked to Gates first, upon Jobs' request, he then found himself in front of El Jobso's closed door, who thought as inappropriate to talk about Gates at a time when Microsoft was going through a DOJ investigation. So Bob goes on and on about how pissed he was from the incident and he then resorts into a Freudian-like analysis of Jobs' style and character that makes you go WTF.

All this to explain the conspiracy theories behind Apple's recent price-cut of the iPhone and its generous 100 bucks rebate to early adopters who paid the full 599 plus taxes for the 8GB version...

In his article, somewhere midway, Gringely says:

...One thing that Gates told me in that interview was he didn’t understand why Jobs had gone back to Apple at all. “Why would he do that?” Bill asked. “He has to know that he can never win.”...

And I am thinkin': Define WIN my man! He himself (Cringely) says somewhere else that El Jobso is the best computer company manager on the planet. He commands with his little pinkies his company, his stylish products, the Press, and an immense and growing user community. What d'ye expect more? Any given event on any new Apple product announcements with His Jobness taking a central part, the world stops to function and people forget about anything else happening (unless it's a monster meteorite on a collision course to Earth). It blows me away, but how do reporters like Gringely in the US define winning? Of course if they consider the conflict in Iraq as winning, then I get it... El Jobso is by this standard a big loser. I'm sure Gates himself would reconsider his selection of words if he had to make the same statement today (that earlier quote was from the interview ten years ago). But Gringely keeps on whining like a middle-aged widow... he's probably past his due date long ago.

Anyways, Gringely's article makes some interesting passtime reading, regardless his emotional outbursts vis-à-vis His Jobness. Go have a look.

Friday, September 7, 2007

No comments...

Berlin, 2 days in September...

That's what makes His Jobness Divine!

To all iPhone customers:

I have received hundreds of emails from iPhone customers who are upset about Apple dropping the price of iPhone by $200 two months after it went on sale. After reading every one of these emails, I have some observations and conclusions.

First, I am sure that we are making the correct decision to lower the price of the 8GB iPhone from $599 to $399, and that now is the right time to do it. iPhone is a breakthrough product, and we have the chance to 'go for it' this holiday season. iPhone is so far ahead of the competition, and now it will be affordable by even more customers. It benefits both Apple and every iPhone user to get as many new customers as possible in the iPhone 'tent'. We strongly believe the $399 price will help us do just that this holiday season.

Second, being in technology for 30+ years I can attest to the fact that the technology road is bumpy. There is always change and improvement, and there is always someone who bought a product before a particular cutoff date and misses the new price or the new operating system or the new whatever. This is life in the technology lane. If you always wait for the next price cut or to buy the new improved model, you'll never buy any technology product because there is always something better and less expensive on the horizon. The good news is that if you buy products from companies that support them well, like Apple tries to do, you will receive years of useful and satisfying service from them even as newer models are introduced.

Third, even though we are making the right decision to lower the price of iPhone, and even though the technology road is bumpy, we need to do a better job taking care of our early iPhone customers as we aggressively go after new ones with a lower price. Our early customers trusted us, and we must live up to that trust with our actions in moments like these.

Therefore, we have decided to offer every iPhone customer who purchased an iPhone from either Apple or AT&T, and who is not receiving a rebate or any other consideration, a $100 store credit towards the purchase of any product at an Apple Retail Store or the Apple Online Store. Details are still being worked out and will be posted on Apple's website next week. Stay tuned.

We want to do the right thing for our valued iPhone customers. We apologize for disappointing some of you, and we are doing our best to live up to your high expectations of Apple.

Steve Jobs
Apple CEO

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Whar's so wrong with those Chinese dudes?

They just can't wait to become American Dream type billionnaires and they thought they were gonna get away with it. Using cheap labor, cheap materials, polluting the living shit out of their own surroundings, using slaves to labor under appaling conditions and they thought we were gonna buy that shit? Thank God there is the global village where no secrerts exist anymore. Mattel recalled another so many thousand toys today. Chinese trade scandals won't stop... because the ex-commies wanna be more Catholic than the bleedin' Pope when it comes to living as a capitalist. Corrupt sobs! May you burn in hell!

Look at this excerpt from an MSNBC article earlier today:

After hearing about dangerous Chinese products elsewhere, Indonesia this summer began testing popular Chinese-made items on its own store shelves. What it found has added to the list of horrors: mercury-laced makeup that turns skin black, dried fruit spiked with industrial chemicals, carcinogenic children's candy.

The Chinese government called up in August saying it had a possible solution. Husniah Rubiana Thamrin Akib, head of Indonesia's top food and drug safety agency, was pleased and welcomed her counterparts to her office.

But according to Husniah, the Chinese suggested Indonesia lower its safety standards. Husniah said she was "very upset and very surprised." "I said to them, 'I respect your standards for your country. I hope you respect ours,' " Husniah said.

Can you just believe that? Lower standards to accomodate junk made in China? Have these folks got the term 'moral' in their vocabulary? I seriously doubt it. No wonder Mandarins were also made in China...

That's the only thing I despised, despise and will despise about Apple Inc... and many other of our Western big ass companies. Everytime I order anything from the 'El Jobso' online store I've got to follow the item's TNT itinerary depart from freakin' Shanghai all the way to TNT's Arhnem (NL) depot, before reaching my doorstep.

Waiting for the Chinese Administration to take care of that? You wish... they'd shoot or hang a few to fool us about their good intents, but... sort this out? You'll have to wait until the cows come home...

The Land of the Pharaohs

Click on the picture for a larger view. Would you like to live there? I'd probably do, if the 'residences' between the photographer's point of view and the pyramids were empty, and green...

Anyways, try printing the picture in A3 format and if you have trouble sleeping, start counting satellite dishes, or apartment windows... like Mr. Bean was counting sheep!

iPhone outsells all the rest in July.

Apple Inc's iPhone outsold all smartphones in the United States in July, its first full month on sale, accounting for 1.8 percent of all U.S. mobile handset sales, research group iSuppli said on Tuesday.

ISuppli reiterated its forecast that Apple would sell 4.5 million iPhones this year, rising to more than 30 million in 2011.

The two models of the iPhone on the market sold more than Research in Motion's Blackberry series, the entire Palm portfolio and any individual smartphone model from Motorola, Nokia or Samsung.

Sales equaled those of LG Electronics' Chocolate, the most popular feature phone on the U.S. market, iSuppli said.

ISuppli classifies the iPhone as a crossover phone that competes with both smartphones, which have personal computer-like functions such as e-mail, and feature phones, which have extras such as cameras and music players.

"While iSuppli has not collected historical information on this topic, it's likely that the speed of the iPhone's rise to competitive dominance in its segment is unprecedented in the history of the mobile-handset market," iSuppli said...

read entire article

Give it up going after Apple, Jim Cramer says...

Take a look at this video. Hear it from the experts. Apple is here to stay, and not only for the iPhone and the (new) iPods... but for the MacBooks and desktops as well... Too powerful a club! Sounds like music to my ears. Sorry Borg. Sorry Monkey Boy...

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Second to no-one! QE-I

"My loving people, we have been persuaded by some that are careful of our safety, to take heed how we commit ourselves to armed multitudes for fear of treachery. Let tyrants fear. I have always so behaved myself that, under God, I have placed my chief strength and safeguard in the loyal hearts and goodwill of my subjects. And therefore I am come amongst you all, as you see at this time, not for my recreation and disport, but being resolved, in the midst and heat of the battle, to live or die amongst you all; to lay down for my God, and for my kingdom, and for my people, my honour and my blood even in the dust. I know I have the body of a week and feeble woman, but I have the heart and stomach of a king, and a king of England too. And think foul scorn that Parma or Spain, or any Prince of Europe, should dare to invade the borders of my realm!"

Sony throws in the towell...

Sony’s three-year effort to beat Apple’s iTunes Music Store is over.

The company, which is one of the largest movie, music and consumer electronics companies in the world, said Thursday that it will be closing down its Connect Music Store in Europe and the U.S.

In its place, Sony is adding Microsoft’s Windows Media technology to its music players and allowing consumers to download copy-protected content from numerous Windows Media-compatible music stores on the Internet, including those from Napster, and Wal-Mart.

Sony will also distribute Windows Media Player 11 software with its devices.

The news, which was announced at the IFA trade show in Berlin and via a statement in the U.S., represents a big change in the direction of Sony’s portable audio business.

Sony created the portable audio sector in 1979 when it debuted the TPS-L2 Walkman, a cassette tape-based audio player that cost the equivalent of a week’s wages for an office worker. The company led the market for years, but that all changed when Apple introduced its iPod in 2001...

read further....

PS. I didn't even know they claimed a service similar to iTunes... If they'd spent some time studying the Apple business model instead of fighting against it in all their arrogance, they might have learnt somethin'.

Why does this man look so pleased?

Why not? He's a King! King Mswati II of Swaziland! Worth 200 million dollars. Africa’s last absolute monarch assumed the throne at age 18. Wealth derived from investments, real estate. Lavish spender is building palaces for each of his 13 wives. Recently held a reported million dollar-plus birthday bash for himself; critics denounced the spending given the country’s poverty and high AIDS rate. Almost every year, he chooses a new bride from among 20,000 naked bare-breasted virgins; so far, he has 13 wives and is building a palace for each.

With A-holes like this one and quite a few like him, creaming Africa's wealth and leaving natives starving, can anyone convince me why should I or anybody else in the West contribute our money to so to say 'make poverty history'? I mean, really?! Why don't we start by cleaning the darn place from characters like this one, first? You know that for a fact, every penny you contribute to fight poverty down there ends in the pockets of these individuals, whichever country we are dealing with... like the billions we shipped to the Tsunami victims in Indonesia and India. I bet you, quite a few personal bank accounts of local authority smarties and 'businessmen' get explodingly fat and juicy in the great Swiss Confederation, Singapore and the Cayman Islands...

So, why bother?

By the way, it's all relative. Maybe those 'dream-on' virgins think their king being next to God rich and can't thus close a eye before the annual virgin '(s)election' day... but, think about this... even if his Majesty owned every single penny of his alleged 200M, this is just chickenshit money for juggernauts like the Borg (aka. Bill Gates the III) who actually, right just now, made this kind of money in less than the time it took me to write this blog. And how about Donald Trump who recently put one of his residences for sale with an asking price of more than two thirds of his Majesty's Net Worth? So, those 13 palaces? How much of a real palace are they, really? Maybe big in Swaziland compared to the average hut... but, by the rest of the world standards? Give us a break!

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Eventually the Greeks will get what they deserve...

I had a boss telling me 'eventually everybody gets what he deserves'. This is the wisest advice I ever got in 30 years professional career. You deserve the employees you get, the bosses, suppliers and customers, friends and enemies, the wife, children, mistress, whatever. Only for your own parents you cannot be blamed.

The current Greek Administration by Constantine Karamanlis 'governing' the country during the last four years is a textbook case study of political incompetence and corruption. In 2003, contemporary Greeks, tired by more than 20 years of uninterrupted socialist cabinets, voted for change. They elected a right-wing conservative cabinet with a PM carrying the same name and some family connection with an infamous character who served as Greek PM from mid 50ies to early 60ies. That guy, uncle of the current PM, eventually moved to a voluntary exile in Paris, France (some exile, huh...) when the Center party EK (Union of the Center) won the 1963 ballots with a tiny majority. Karamanlis Sr. left because he was actually scared to be persecuted for past irregularities, especially for vote counts in the 1961 elections.

His nephew, the current PM, proud and arrogant second to no-one, spend at least 2-3 years of his own present administration taking the piss on the past Socialist governments for wrongdoings. In the meantime, he has been enjoying lamb-chops and good wine on the back of Greek taxpayers. His first term is about to come to an end and he still needs to show some achievement. His cabinet was initially filled-up with corrupt ministers who had to leave the cabinet in a number of scandals for alegged misappropriations of assets.

Karamanlis Jr's final blow, his own 'Katrina' only happened this summer though. With no care whatsoever for establishing a descent policy for the country's forrests, millions of olive trees, scores of animals and 64 people ended up in flames. It's not over yet. It's not only the lousy behavior of modern Greeks vis-à-vis their environment or anything that's not theirs that is to blame for the national disaster. It's not only the incompetence of the current authorities in finding and arresting the arsonists (if there are any).

In the first place it is the lack of proper forrest administration, legislation and policy. Terrains 'freed-up' by the passage of fire are open to exploitation for residential building projects. Are you capable of raising four lousy walls overnight and cover them with something looking like a roof? You done it! You own the terrain and no politician with hunger for your vote is ever going to stop you. Why should he anyways? In a country with legendary cover-up practices of all conceivable scenarios of political corruption you'd kill to get elected to such rewarding jobs.

The country disposes its garbage and litter in 400 designated places in the vicinity of forrests. No cabinet cares to decide on investing in the built-up of appropriate garbage processing and recycling stations, as the case is anywhere else in Europe. With high summer temperatures these garbage mountains obviously turn into potential fire-starters. The rest you know.

Very soon now, (September?), new ballots for the following term will be held. An old lady who suffered terrible losses from burnt olive trees declared that instead of a cross on a ballot checkbox, she plans to put ashes from her ravaged trees instead. Good for her!

Following a recent opinion poll the current governing party appeared to still maintain, nonwithstanding, a 3 percent points advance over the socialist opposition. Apparently our dearest co-citizens, contemporary Greeks, don't seem to see incompetence even when it slams them in the face. Eventually they'll get what they deserve! Agree?