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Stevenote 2007 Now!

Wow, I am so hyped about the Macworld 2007 Keynote!

I don’t know what products will be announced today, but I’m 50% sure that in about 4 years, I might be able to afford some of them. Used. On ebay.

Awesome!

(P.S. Dear Mac people, please don’t cause the interweb to meltdown today, some of us have work to do…)



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iTunes, Playlists, Sharing, Recommending…

I was thinking about music recommendation sites/engines (which seem to be all the rage nowadays) as well as the proliferation of iPods (and iTunes users) and the fact that the Zune thinks it so cool because it does some sort of simple sharing (which is supposedly “social” in nature.)

So if it really is “all about the playlist” (I think Lucas Gonze said this once, so I’ll give him credit) why doesn’t Apple follow through… Here’s my thought:

If you’ve got an iPod, chances really good that you use iTunes. iTunes does playlists. It can even do things like make a smart playlist of tracks you have recently played, and feed them back to a service like last.fm, which can show you neat stuff like what you listen to the most, what your friends are listening to, who your musical neighbors are, etc. last.fm doesn’t really feed back to iTunes or your iPod though – here’s where Apple could step in…

Let’s say that your iPod feeds back to Apple’s iTunes Music Store the tracks you’ve played, and does the “people who like X also like Y” thing, but then also provided samples (low bitrate, 30 second preview, whatever) back to you as downloads in iTunes (heck, they could be automated, podcast-style) which then get synced to your iPod. So each day you sync and get something new, of which you might want to purchase.

This is just a rough idea, I’m sure Apple could create a good experience for sharing playlist data, and recommending music.

I know there are sites that do somewhat similar things for podcasts (AmigoFish, GigaDial) but they require some sort of manual labor on the user’s part. Automation and simplicity would be the key though, provide benefits to the users without forcing them to do any/much work.

Thoughts?





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Am I a Laptop Guy?

It’s been over a month now since I got an iBook. I’ve had old PowerBooks before, but they were never that portable (meaning they had almost useless batteries, and no wifi.)

So, having a working laptop is an interesting thing. I know, some people live by their laptops, but I’ve always been a desktop guy. These are my observations so far on carrying around and using an iBook.

  • It’s heavy. Even though it’s a 12″ iBook, and it weights just 4.9 lbs, carrying it around is an effort. I put it in an over-the-shoulder bag I have that also carries the power supply, and other misc. stuff like a webcam, ethernet cable, Moleskin notebook, pens, etc.
  • Wifi is awesome. Mac OS X makes wifi pretty seamless. I remember trying to help a friend set up wifi using Windows, and we couldn’t figure it out.
  • It’s nice to have with you. But should I take it everywhere? Over the holidays I skipped bringing it somewhere and once I was there realized I really should have brought it. So it still requires thought as to whether I should lug the thing along or not. At least I have the option of lugging it and having it available to use instead of one of the Windows machines that seems to be everywhere.
  • I still don’t think of it as a main machine. To me my desktop Mac will always be my “homebase” computing machine – the powerhouse – with tons of RAM and disk space and running as a server, while a laptop is the portable solution to connecting and working.
  • Sitting on the couch reading my aggregator while watching TV is very relaxing.

Those are my notes so far. I’m sure I’ll have more as I go.



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Coming Soon: Mobility

iBook

If all goes as planned, we should be mobile by next week with a 1GHz iBook G4/512MB/30GB/CD/AirPortCard…

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Commercial Software Gone Wrong

A friend of mine, who does work in video production professionally, just purchased an upgrade from Final Cut Pro 3 to Final Cut Pro 5. In doing so, he provided his version 3 serial number, paid for the software, got it delivered, tried to install it, and that’s where things got messy…

When the installer asked for the version 5 serial number, he put it in, and it then asked for the version 3 serial number. No matter how many times he tried it, it was a no go. Reboots were tried, running version 3 while installing was tried, etc. No good…

After a phone call to Apple about this, and walking through it all again, the support guy asks for the version 3 serial number, and then says that number is a hacked serial number floating around the net. Now what?

To be clear, my friend has the actual version 3 disk with the actual version 3 serial number printed on the disk envelope, and all the original packaging, etc. He bought it. He makes his living doing video production. What the hell is he supposed to do now?