Published January 7, 2009
Music , Technology
Tags: apple, drm, Music, music-industry
I’m really happy to see that all of the
content music in the iTunes store will be available with no DRM. That’s a big step forward – just tonight I was denied the right to play some of my music on my family room computer because it’s not authorized for my purchased iTunes content and I already have the maximum five machines authorized. Unfortunately two of those machines are no longer functioning, so I can’t de-authorize them. So I thought – here’s a perfect opportunity to change those tunes I purchased from iTunes (not very many – usually I buy through eMusic or Amazon).
Then I found out that Apple wants 30 cents a tune to change content I already paid for to the non-DRM’ed version. Does anybody besides me think that’s totally outrageous?
Published July 8, 2008
Tags: apple, microsoft
Microsoft today announced new packages bundled under the Microsoft Online Services name. Looks interesting. They’re talking about something called Exchange and Sharepoint “Online Deskless Worker” (targeted at people who only occasionally use a computer during the day) for $3 per month, whereas “information workers” are supposed to purchase the full suite, including Exchange, Sharepoint, Live Communicator, and Live Meeting for $15 per month.
I assume that there’s more difference between the two offerings other than just the addition of Communicator and Live Meeting, but there’s no way to tell that so far.
While the press release is enticing, the web sites that it links to make no mention of the new packages – looks like a case of right hands and left hands in Redmond not exactly meeting up on the marketing front. Compare that to Apple’s MobileMe announcements around WWDC, and you’ll see why people are so easily confused about what Microsoft is doing – even when they’re doing good stuff!
Published May 15, 2008
Tags: apple, iphone
I’ve had some iPhone hardware problems lately.
I’m now on my fourth set of iPhone earphones in less than a year. On the first pair, one of the earpieces fell apart. A driver crapped out on the second. Two weeks ago one of the earbuds shorted out on the third. Each time a trip to the Apple store has resulted in them replacing the phones with no problem (except for the second one, when the guy at the store tried to convince me that it was due to me listening at ridiculous volume, which was not the case).
Last week I pressed the power button on the top of the iPhone and it remained depressed instead of popping back out. After that I couldn’t reliably get the phone to power on. I took it in to the Apple Store on my way home and they replaced it with another phone right away.
I wonder what happens the next time I have a hardware issue when it’s likely my iPhone will no longer be under the one year warranty.
I’m down in California – had a good meeting yesterday with our colleagues from UC Berkeley about their organizational efforts, the Kuali Student project, and their collaboration tools strategy effort. Great stuff, and great folks!
Now I’m in Cupertino for a meeting of the higher-ed iPhone task force. Should be an interesting day.
At dinner last night I was complaining to Jason Ediger about not being able to manually manage my music on the iPhone by dragging and dropping songs from iTunes. He told me that I was wrong, and that with the iPhone update from January you could actually manually manage music and video on the phone.
And sure enough, he’s right!
If you set your iPhone settings to enable this, which you do like so:
You can then drag and drop songs onto the iPhone – as shown below in this clip:
Published January 15, 2008
Gadgets & Gear , Technology
Tags: apple, mac
Watching the blog and chat coverage from Steve Jobs’ Macworld Expo keynote this morning. It’s nice to see Apple introduce some things I’ve been asking for – most notably a light notebook (the MacBook Air – 3 lbs, with lots of nice features including being really thin, a mutlitouch trackpad (like the iPhone), and an (exensive) option for solid state disk instead of spinning disk), and the email app on the iPod Touch (though that’s a $20 software upgrade).
The other thing they introduced that I think is significant is location awareness in the maps app on the iPhone (and the Touch). Interestingly enough, they’re not doing it with GPS (since the devices don’t have GPS, which I’ve heard was a decision based on the power consumption of GPS units), but through triangulation of signal strength from cell or wifi base stations. I know that’s an approach that CS faculty here have also been using in their research projects. I wonder if that location info will be available to applications when they release the iPhone SDK next month.
Not a revolutionary set of new products, but certainly some nice incremental progress from Apple.