Wednesday, 22 August 2007

Apple number 3 in the U.S.

Apple's market share is growing, in line with what we would expect as many analysts in the IT industry believe we are heading for a tipping point in a few years where more and more people reject Windows.

Indeed, Apple's U.S. Mac sales have grown at triple the rate of the rest of the PC industry since last fall, propelling it into third place in the U.S., behind Dell (Charts, Fortune 500) and Hewlett-Packard (Charts, Fortune 500).

Taken from: Apple's surprise weapon: Computers .

So while this is in line with expectations (in terms of very healthy growth for Apple), it is somewhat surprising that they managed to achieve number three in terms of market share. While there are conspiracy theories that Google may be intersted in buying Apple (I don't subscribe to this point of view myself), it looks like Apple are doing just fine doing what they do best - producing great computers and focussing on user-centric software. Did I mention that Mac Mini boots in twenty seconds?

Wednesday, 15 August 2007

Vista too flabby for the 2008 Olympics

More bad news for Vista - The Olympic Committee chooses XP over Vista clearly demonstrating that big business finds it too risky to install the new OS (something discussed briefly in the previous post: Please hold, all our operators are busy rebooting Vista....) and in line with what you would expect if we are indeed heading slowly but surely for the tipping point.

So that's 12,000 desktop PC's and 800 laptops that could have been running Vista and won't be. I bet that there are some linux advocates out there kicking themselves that linux isn't mature enough for this kind of situation because if it were, I have a feeling that it wouldn't be Windows XP that was chosen, it would be Linux. Of course, if it were up to me I would say put them all on Tiger but I bet that the cost of all those Apple Macs that would be required effectively priced that right off the page, even if it would have been a great idea (and they would have got wireless internet thrown in the mix too, thanks to the user friendly Airport tech, but I digress).

I have a feeling that some of the Microsoft executives are way more pissed off than any linux advocates though. They would have loved their flagship OS to have been chosen by the Olympic Committee, as it is, it looks bad for Microsoft even if financially it isn't.

Please hold, all our operators are busy rebooting Vista....

Well this is interesting - the Dutch office of fair trading have set up a dedicated complaints hotline for Windows Vista users. Lots of consumers are having problems with the new OS and if it continues, they may take legal action against Microsoft.

The old business adage of waiting for the service packs to come out before upgrading should perhaps be adopted by consumers too (and retailers, as its their fault people are buying Vista, what else can they do if there is no choice)... or then again maybe Microsoft shouldn't release beta software on the masses.

Friday, 10 August 2007

Heading for the tipping point

The recent blog entry
Apple's Mac Set to Soar by Lance Ulanoff discusses John C DVorak's own acceptance of the Mac as his primary platform and sees that the future belongs to the Mac. I agree that Mac marketshare will continue to grow as Apple continues to put quality machines on the marketplace and more PC users become educated that OSX offers a better user experience than Windows. To quote the PC World article I've linked to...

To put it simply, Apple's Macintosh is becoming the most logical choice for those looking to buy a new computer.

I regularly use both platforms (PC at work and Mac at home) and know for sure which I prefer. It isnt the one that forces me to go through some convaluted uninstall process when I want to get rid of software and then asks me if I want to delete shared files (what the fuck?), its the one that lets me drag a program I don't want into the trash and forget about it!

(Update) A friend of mine pointed out that this may be true for home users but it isn't for business users. A very good point. However, this just popped into my RSS reader which suggests that the future of business user operating systems may not be Windows, either... Automaker Peugeot Converts 20,000 Desktops To Linux

Thursday, 9 August 2007

Roll your own SWF with MTASC, dude

I'm really liking working with MTASC, the open source actionscript compiler which supports AS 2 and the haXe language (something I've not used but I have checked out the language features and I'm pretty impressed).

Im currently using MTASC with Flash Develop on a Windows XP machine and as a hardcore coder at heart I love being able to create SWF's without using the heavyweight Flash IDE, which in most cases I feel to be totally unnecessary. Why do I need a timeline, after all? I can structure my programs just fine without one thanks.

The IDE is still useful however for doing things like laying screens out, which means the only Actionscript code in the FLA in a scenario like this is just to wire together the Classes (which do all the real work) and the interface textfields, movieclips and components.

This workflow of FlashDevelop and MTASC works very well indeed, but it is somewhat PC-centric. I'm still getting my Mac workflow on its feet with Textmate (works fine on my Tiger machine but complains loudly on my Panther iBook and I'm not familiar enough with the compiler to know why). Still, I'll get it set up even if I have to use Director to create a front end to the MTASC compiler!

If anyone else is thinking about going down this route of using MTASC to create SWFS, here is a useful links that solved some issues I had... Roll your own Delegate clas.

Sunday, 5 August 2007

Elton STFU n00b

Elton John says that the internet is destroying music. I think that Elton John is destroying music and has been doing for a very long time!

If anything, the internet may destroy the record labels - not music. Imagine a world where albums were free or such a low cost that they may as well be, how would artists make money? Through concerts and live performances. They would make more money because more people would be exposed to their music through the web and therefore they would gain more fans, which leads to more sellout gigs, which leads to more gigs. Everybody benefits in this model except the record labels.

So stick that up your fat ass crack-pipe Elton, just because nobody bought your last album doesn't mean the net is a bad thing, it means your last album was crap.

Friday, 3 August 2007

Foiled again RIAA, shucks

File-sharing is a "petty offense," say German prosecutors

Responding to a request from the German music industry for the names and addresses of users allegedly engaged in file-sharing, the court instructed the public prosecutor's office not to turn over the data.