KansasFest 2010: ACTION RETROCOMPUTING CONFERENCE

So, I guess it’d be a good idea to blog about my first time at KansasFest, an annual Apple II convention held at Rockhurst University in Kansas City, MO.

(For the benefit of any readers of this blog that don’t know… I have absolutely no problem with the Apple that made the Apple II, and as I grew up with an Apple //c and a couple Apple II clones, I kinda have to be a fan of that Apple. 😉 The Apple that I have a problem with is Apple, Inc.)

Due to the length of this post, I’ll use the intro feature, so everything else is after the break. Continue reading

Why Apple is evil: More blocking apps for possible uses… that iOS features can do, too

Apple has removed iChatr, a Chatroulette-style app for the iPhone 4, from the App Store, due to too many people exposing themselves.

OK, that’s something to be expected on a Chatroulette-like service, but here’s the thing. You could very easily make a Chatroulette-like service that uses phone numbers, completely avoiding the app store, and then making FaceTime calls. (Granted, Chatroulette and iChatr have better privacy than that approach.)

Or, you could even have a single number for a FaceTime service that acts like Chatroulette. Call the number, hit FaceTime, get a random partner. Want to switch partners, hang up and call back. (Or, if the other person hangs up, it could autoswitch.)

And, there’s nothing stopping people from exposing themselves on FaceTime.

Source: Gizmodo

Why Apple is evil: Jobs confusing signal drops with call drops, smearing competition

This one’s what I intended to post last night, but didn’t get around to it.

So, there was a press conference about the iPhone 4 issues yesterday. In it, Steve Jobs announced what many were asking for – bumper cases for the iPhone 4, free for everyone.

But, before he announced that, he decided to smear the entire rest of the cell phone industry, by saying that all phones have signal drops when gripped a certain way.

The problem with that is, sure, most any phone WILL lose signal when gripped a certain way. But does that translate to dropped calls to the extent of the iPhone 4? Most likely not, because there’s not really complaints about the other phones, just the iPhone 4. Oh, and among my phones, I’ve got a Bold 9700 on AT&T, so I just tried it. I could reproduce a SLIGHT signal drop with a normal grip, and a moderate drop with an extremely tight grip, but not what Apple got. (This paragraph, I will note, is my own opinion.)

Seriously, Apple, just admit that you have a problem, don’t drag others into it when they’re not nearly as bad as you are.

Source: Engadget

Why Apple is evil: Claiming that jailbreaking caused an iPad to dangerously overheat

This is a disturbing one.

A reader of The Tech Report has reported that his iPad’s charging cable melted, and the iPad itself got dangerously hot – to the point that he reflexively dropped it, causing the screen to crack.

So, he took it into his local Apple Store, expecting a replacement.

But that didn’t happen.

The Apple Store rep noticed a Cydia icon on the screen. At that point, the reader was told that his device was completely not covered under warranty, and that the crack also meant that it wasn’t covered – never mind that the crack was caused by the overheating incident.

Here’s the thing. Let’s say that the iPad did overheat due to software. It should still have thermal protection circuits to protect users from fire hazards. The fact that those failed means that Apple should at the very least make this go away, because otherwise it’s bad PR. Oh, wait. Apple didn’t make it go away, and now it’s bad PR time.

The other thing is… Apple has a burden of proof, under the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, that the jailbreaking caused the machine to fail. If they can’t prove it, then they’ll be forced to replace the iPad.

Seriously, Apple, this is just getting ridiculous. (And there’ll be another article later today.)

A simple hypothesis about society, and why there’s so many problems nowadays

I’ll just come right out with my hypothesis: As the number of people involved in a system increases, the odds of that system failing increase.

Why, though?

Here’s what I’ve seen that leads up to that hypothesis.

The first thing to look at is bureaucracy. Bureaucracy is when small, competing systems form within a larger system, and those competing systems get in the way of each other, when they should be working together towards a common goal. Bureaucratic systems evolve due to specialization – which is usually a good thing – one person can’t control everything in a large system, so other people have to specialize in it. The problem is, get enough people, and then you’re split into different teams that don’t work closely together. At that point, they’re actively competing against each other, and they’re having to cover their asses against one another – the spirit of working to further a cause goes away, and instead self-preservation is the name of the game.

This happens in companies, non-profit organizations, and governments. Continue reading

Why Apple is evil: Trying to hide the problems with the iPhone 4

I’ve been out of town for a while, and hadn’t gotten a chance to post about Apple lately. But now I’ve got a chance to post, so…

In addition to the problems that have been previously reported, it’s also been reported that there are issues with the proximity sensor malfunctioning, causing face-hangups and such.

In light of all of this, but especially the antenna issues, Consumer Reports decided to recommend against purchasing the iPhone 4. This is a pretty major blow against Apple. Now, a non-evil company would admit to their problems, and do something like provide free bumpers, or even publicly recall all the phones.

An evil company, however, would delete any mention of this on their forums, and deny that there ever was any problem. And seeing as this blog is about Apple being evil…

To be fair, there are rumors that there may be a stealth recall, but that’s still not admitting their screwup. That’s not letting people know their phone might be affected, but rather, trying to make a problem go away.

Source: Engadget