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Morning Tech Bits

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24. Re: Morning Tech Bits Apr 23, 2013, 15:57 Mr. Tact
 
I cringe at the thought of what my company pays every month for my smart phone. The only time I've had any notable usage is when I've worked from home for that day and had to call into some kind of meeting/conference call. Person to person calls, I doubt I have ever surpassed 60 minutes in a month. So far this month, one outgoing call, one incoming call -- both under 5 minutes.  
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23. I don't even own a mobile phone... Apr 23, 2013, 15:41 Ant
 
... due to my speech and hearing impediments, and I rarely go out. I do use texts on the Internet with e-mails and AIMs. It's all Internet and online for me. Also, I am an old fart.  
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22. Re: Morning Tech Bits Apr 22, 2013, 21:35 Redmask
 
All of my friends use their cell phones religiously and we're all in our 30s. I try just calling other people sometimes but most of them text to arrange get togethers and keep in touch. You pretty much need to text these days to keep up with your social circle, I see the same thing in people 20 years older than me even. There's a guy at work who brags about not having a cell phone but I suspect the sad truth is that he just has no friends.  
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21. Re: Morning Tech Bits Apr 22, 2013, 20:09 Cutter
 
I don't text or even really chat on my cell. It's really just there for work and emergencies and I pay $12 for 60 mins per month. Considering I use my phone maybe 10 mins per month it's still a waste.
 
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20. Re: Morning Tech Bits Apr 22, 2013, 15:55 Flatline
 
Verno wrote on Apr 22, 2013, 15:44:
The Zune software was the big victory, I was never that impressed with the hardware. It amazes me they killed off the Zune software and replaced it with the godawful Xbox Music shit.

Apple needs to keep innovating though, I agree. Keep hitting the market with new ideas, constantly doing small iterations is going to burn people out and eventually harm the brands. So far they've coasted on Job's legacy, Cook needs to introduce some new products.

If I could find a phone that had good email & text capability and not much else and was absurdly cheap, I'd ditch smartphones altogether because of the tablet.

How absurdly cheap? The Nexus 4 with the new 4.2 swipe typing is pretty much that except its still a smartphone. Took me a few weeks to get used to but now I'm way faster than I was on hardkey phones like blackberries. $350 no contract for a quad core phone with an acceptable camera and no bloatware. It has its issues but overall its a great damned phone and I don't think a better price/performance phone exists elsewhere.

Yeah I was kind of surprised they ditched the zune software too. It was pretty good. But yeah, I remember the launch Zune Fecal Brown edition. *shudder* Sometimes I don't get it.

And I agree entirely with Apple. The window is closing though steadily on Apple to retain it's legacy. Even if there's innovation years down the road, they only have so much time to stand on their own two feet before they forever live in the shadow of Jobs and the consensus becomes Apple is not as good as when Jobs was there.

And I'm actually looking at the Nexus 4 right now. It'll drop my payments by 40 bucks a month by going T-Mobile prepay, which is substantial (AT&T prepay is a terrible deal from what I've seen). I was looking at the HTC One and the Galaxy 3, but eh... I dig buying the phone and switching to prepay. Not to mention that it looks like I'd pay 10 bucks a month more to go with one of the other two phones on a contract.

Oh if you want a laugh, go look at ebay and the nexus 4 phones. They're all being sold unlocked for like 400 bucks for the 8 gig version. Which is hilarious, because for 50 bucks cheaper you can get the 16 gig version unlocked from Google. O.o
 
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19. Re: Morning Tech Bits Apr 22, 2013, 15:44 Verno
 
The Zune software was the big victory, I was never that impressed with the hardware. It amazes me they killed off the Zune software and replaced it with the godawful Xbox Music shit.

Apple needs to keep innovating though, I agree. Keep hitting the market with new ideas, constantly doing small iterations is going to burn people out and eventually harm the brands. So far they've coasted on Job's legacy, Cook needs to introduce some new products.

If I could find a phone that had good email & text capability and not much else and was absurdly cheap, I'd ditch smartphones altogether because of the tablet.

How absurdly cheap? Unfortunately no non-smartphones exist that fit that bill anymore. You could get something like the Nexus 4 with the new 4.2 swipe typing, I like the default combo softkey. Took me a few weeks to get used to but now I'm way faster than I was on hardkey phones like blackberries. $350 no contract for a quad core phone with an acceptable camera and no bloatware. It has its issues but overall its a great damned phone and I don't think a better price/performance phone exists elsewhere.

My problem with tablets is that the form factor is almost always a sitting thing whereas with my smartphone its wherever I want. Tablets are great for reading magazine style web articles and video though.

This comment was edited on Apr 22, 2013, 15:52.
 
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18. Re: Morning Tech Bits Apr 22, 2013, 15:42 Flatline
 
Ratty wrote on Apr 22, 2013, 11:57:
Agreed, as much as the cultish nature of Apple turns me off they have made some spectacularly cool things. First the IPod, then the IPhone. Their walled garden approach to these is OK with me but I'd never get an IPad. That's too close to a computer that could do real work and I refuse to be limited to Apple-approved apps bought on ITunes for something like that.

Weirdly enough, I thought the iPad was absolutely useless when it launched, ended up getting one through work, and it's almost entirely replaced my smartphone. It hasn't replaced my laptop: typing still SUCKS on the ipad and there's some stuff it just can't do, but for general noodling on the internet, watching a video, whatever.... I use my laptop a lot less and use my smartphone almost never. If I could find a phone that had good email & text capability and not much else and was absurdly cheap, I'd ditch smartphones altogether because of the tablet.
 
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17. Re: Morning Tech Bits Apr 22, 2013, 15:39 Flatline
 
DangerDog wrote on Apr 22, 2013, 13:42:
The Surface is the Zune all over again.

In order for Microsoft to become cool again they need to look very closely at what made them an overnight hit in the first place which was giving people complete freedom over their "personal" computers from the tyrannical oppression of mainframe computing.

They need to release an OS for tablets that is lightweight, inexpensive and open to running programs that can be purchased and installed from sources other than their paid-wall-garden. Android is all of these things and is why Microsoft is getting their ass kicked.

I picked up a refurb'd zune years and years ago from woot and it frankly blew the ipod out of the water. I used that thing until the battery died completely, replaced it, used it for a few more years, and finally when the charge port broke after like 8 years of constant use I retired it.

Now, with phones carrying more and more memory on them, there's little use for a dedicated mp3 player. Shit with Google Music my entire mp3 collection is on the cloud and I just stream it down when I want it.

I really found it to be a superior product to the normal ipod.

And some folks I know deep in the tech industry have played with the surface pro and said it very nearly is a must-have item. If Microsoft could pump out a revision in a year and fix the small issues they'd have a monster tablet/laptop crossover. Note everything I heard about the Surface RT or whatever it was was terrible.

MS may not be the most innovative, but they put out some good products that are stillborn because they have the Microsoft logo attached to them. They probably need to do what Miller Beer did and spin off a small "independent" company under a totally different name to push out product that would suffer from the MS tag, and I imagine products like the surface would sell much better.

Apple is in the spot I figured it would be. I saw the writing on the wall when the execs started paying out massive dividends to themselves. We haven't seen anything to suggest that the sociopathic highly driven spark that was Steve Jobs is anything near to being in existence in Apple today. The Iphone 4 was the last big iphone iteration (4s had Siri, which has already been eclipsed by Google's offerings, and the Iphone 5 came out with a resounding meh, and let's not forget the debacle of the Maps app), Apple fucked up with the Ipad 3 and Ipad-New coming out within 6 months of each other, and they're moving macbooks last I heard towards a paradigm similar to the ipad, with soldered memory and soldered batteries to enforce a more rigid upgrade cycle.

They may pull something innovative out of their ass, but I give it a year where it may happen. Then, without a *major* shakeup, it's probable that you'll see a slow, steady decline in Apple.
 
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16. Re: Morning Tech Bits Apr 22, 2013, 15:06 avianflu
 
the latter part of that "lumbering toward cool again" article could be an "Onion" fake article.  
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15. Re: Morning Tech Bits Apr 22, 2013, 14:21 KS
 
Cutter wrote on Apr 22, 2013, 10:59:
Mr. Tact wrote on Apr 22, 2013, 10:33:
While I agree it is a silly commercial it did what it was supposed to, put the product into your head.

No, it puts the product into your head in a negative way so you're less inclined to want one. Wtf do a bunch of breakdancing 20 somthings with bad clothes and hair have to do with a device that applies to me and my life? Zero. Less than zero actually. I'd be fucking embarrassed to be associated with said product after that. I can just see people seeing it and then asking you if youu have to breakdance in order to use it. There is bad publicity.

Hah! The ad failed then. I saw a laptop in my peripheral vision while some guy was one-arm hopping across a business meeting desk, so I knew it was a laptop ad, but for what who cares?

If I buy it will I become a good looking, in-shape man with black hair and 5-day short beard who gets the babes or will I use it to curl up on the sofa, rocketting even faster to a lonely, early death from heart disease?
 
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14. Re: Morning Tech Bits Apr 22, 2013, 14:07 Mr. Tact
 
Ratty wrote on Apr 22, 2013, 11:57:
Their walled garden approach to these is OK with me but I'd never get an IPad.
Their walled garden approach is the only reason they were able to make the products they did. Having control of both the hardware and the software was very key in both the iPod and iPhone products.
 
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13. Re: Morning Tech Bits Apr 22, 2013, 13:42 DangerDog
 
The Surface is the Zune all over again.

In order for Microsoft to become cool again they need to look very closely at what made them an overnight hit in the first place which was giving people complete freedom over their "personal" computers from the tyrannical oppression of mainframe computing.

They need to release an OS for tablets that is lightweight, inexpensive and open to running programs that can be purchased and installed from sources other than their paid-wall-garden. Android is all of these things and is why Microsoft is getting their ass kicked.
 
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12. Re: Morning Tech Bits Apr 22, 2013, 11:57 Ratty
 
Agreed, as much as the cultish nature of Apple turns me off they have made some spectacularly cool things. First the IPod, then the IPhone. Their walled garden approach to these is OK with me but I'd never get an IPad. That's too close to a computer that could do real work and I refuse to be limited to Apple-approved apps bought on ITunes for something like that.  
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11. Re: Morning Tech Bits Apr 22, 2013, 11:42 Julio
 
Microsoft is the opposite of cool. And not going anywhere towards it.  
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10. Re: Morning Tech Bits Apr 22, 2013, 11:34 Verno
 
Cutter wrote on Apr 22, 2013, 11:05:
And do I own an iPod or any other Apple related shite? No. Do I hate Apple for myriad reasons? Yes.

Apple does make some genuinely cool stuff though, its more the pricing that I have a problem with personally. Bottom line is that no one wants Microsofts me-too devices, they can come up with as many hipster wannabe ads and ramrodded product placement campaigns as they want. People aren't buying them because they aren't giving them a reason to bother. There's really no excuse for a company with such a large R&D department to come up with the kind of unimaginative shit we've been seeing for consumer offerings.
 
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9. Re: Morning Tech Bits Apr 22, 2013, 11:13 Beamer
 
Cutter wrote on Apr 22, 2013, 11:05:
Beamer wrote on Apr 22, 2013, 11:04:
Cutter wrote on Apr 22, 2013, 10:59:
Mr. Tact wrote on Apr 22, 2013, 10:33:
While I agree it is a silly commercial it did what it was supposed to, put the product into your head.

No, it puts the product into your head in a negative way so you're less inclined to want one. Wtf do a bunch of breakdancing 20 somthings with bad clothes and hair have to do with a device that applies to me and my life? Zero. Less than zero actually. I'd be fucking embarrassed to be associated with said product after that. I can just see people seeing it and then asking you if youu have to breakdance in order to use it. There is bad publicity.

Come off it. I'm sure people said the same thing about the commercials that made the iPod a hit.


What's that? That was 10 years ago? For a product with less productivity? Don't tell anyone in Redmond!

And do I own an iPod or any other Apple related shite? No. Do I hate Apple for myriad reasons? Yes.


You missed my post.
 
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8. Re: Morning Tech Bits Apr 22, 2013, 11:05 Cutter
 
Beamer wrote on Apr 22, 2013, 11:04:
Cutter wrote on Apr 22, 2013, 10:59:
Mr. Tact wrote on Apr 22, 2013, 10:33:
While I agree it is a silly commercial it did what it was supposed to, put the product into your head.

No, it puts the product into your head in a negative way so you're less inclined to want one. Wtf do a bunch of breakdancing 20 somthings with bad clothes and hair have to do with a device that applies to me and my life? Zero. Less than zero actually. I'd be fucking embarrassed to be associated with said product after that. I can just see people seeing it and then asking you if youu have to breakdance in order to use it. There is bad publicity.

Come off it. I'm sure people said the same thing about the commercials that made the iPod a hit.


What's that? That was 10 years ago? For a product with less productivity? Don't tell anyone in Redmond!

And do I own an iPod or any other Apple related shite? No. Do I hate Apple for myriad reasons? Yes.
 
Avatar 25394
 

"Nobody wants to be nobody in America. Ed is the apotheosis of a prevailing American syndrome. It used to be that someone became famous because they were special. Now people are considered special just for being famous. Fame, itself, is its own virtue.
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7. Re: Morning Tech Bits Apr 22, 2013, 11:04 Beamer
 
Cutter wrote on Apr 22, 2013, 10:59:
Mr. Tact wrote on Apr 22, 2013, 10:33:
While I agree it is a silly commercial it did what it was supposed to, put the product into your head.

No, it puts the product into your head in a negative way so you're less inclined to want one. Wtf do a bunch of breakdancing 20 somthings with bad clothes and hair have to do with a device that applies to me and my life? Zero. Less than zero actually. I'd be fucking embarrassed to be associated with said product after that. I can just see people seeing it and then asking you if youu have to breakdance in order to use it. There is bad publicity.

Come off it. I'm sure people said the same thing about the commercials that made the iPod a hit.


What's that? That was 10 years ago? For a product with less productivity? Don't tell anyone in Redmond!
 
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Music for the discerning:
http://www.deathwishinc.com
http://www.hydrahead.com
http://www.painkillerrecords.com
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6. Re: Morning Tech Bits Apr 22, 2013, 10:59 Cutter
 
Mr. Tact wrote on Apr 22, 2013, 10:33:
While I agree it is a silly commercial it did what it was supposed to, put the product into your head.

No, it puts the product into your head in a negative way so you're less inclined to want one. Wtf do a bunch of breakdancing 20 somthings with bad clothes and hair have to do with a device that applies to me and my life? Zero. Less than zero actually. I'd be fucking embarrassed to be associated with said product after that. I can just see people seeing it and then asking you if youu have to breakdance in order to use it. There is bad publicity.
 
Avatar 25394
 

"Nobody wants to be nobody in America. Ed is the apotheosis of a prevailing American syndrome. It used to be that someone became famous because they were special. Now people are considered special just for being famous. Fame, itself, is its own virtue.
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5. Re: Morning Tech Bits Apr 22, 2013, 10:48 Verno
 
Product awareness isn't enough these days, people need a compelling reason to choose your product over a competitors and those ads fail to showcase any reason why someone should seek out something from an undesired brand.

Really what Microsoft needs to do has been discussed many times but never implemented properly - spin off consumer services and entertainment, let them fend for themselves and have their own brands away from consumer toxic Microsoft one.
 
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