On Monday, I saw that Spring Design is suing Barnes & Noble for infringing on their own "Alex" e-reader. Eric Kmiec, Spring Design’s VP of sales and marketing, released a statement. "We showed the Alex e-book design to Barnes & Noble in good faith with the intention of working together to provide a superior dual screen e-book to the market."
So the lesson here is that when you take your prototype in and demo it to the big boys, better have lots of lawyers, an iron clad NDA, a pending patent, and maybe even a video of the session. So much for any illusions about Barnes & Noble innovating against Apple.
European regulators are not as sanguine about the Oracle acquisition of Sun, according to Larry Dignan at ZDnet. At issue is the EU concern about what Oracle will do with (to) MySQL once they get their hands on it. I'm glad the EU is asking the tough questions the U.S. DOJ didn't ask. Mac OS X customers have a stake in this too.
Is anyone having trouble with their Apple Time Capsule overheating and failing? The Guardian has collected some data that suggests an average failure date of 535 days after purchase - conveniently beyond the warranty. It's something to watch for.
Here's a story that escaped my attention back in September. It seems that only the iPhone 3GS has the necessary hardware for an encrypted link to Exchange (2007) server. Apple glossed over that with the iPhone 3G, but when iPhone OS 3.1 shipped, the ruse was over. That has gotten a lot of enterprise people steamed. TUAW, it seems, first discussed the issue on September 10 and InfoWorld got all crazy about it a few days later. Here is Apple's rather ironic suggestion. It's not clear whether this has damaged Apple's reputation in enterprise circles. If you've heard anything, let me know.
All this could be why Apple has a new job opening for an iPhone security lead. (See below.)
We all know that customers can be stubborn and do unexpected things. Or maybe embracing Blu-ray is expected for people who don't have terrific broadband connections, don't know how to set up streaming to an HDTV, or just enjoy holding a high tech disc that blows away most broadband speeds anyway. So the World According to Jobs is not working, and Best Buy projects that they will sell 18.6 million Blu-ray players in 2010. That's over and above the 10 millon that will be sold in 2009. Best Buy exec Mike Vitelli said that "the Blu-ray player is the fastest rising consumer electronics product, exceeding even ebook readers and netbooks," according to TVPredictions. And Mr. Vitelli ought to know.
Yesterday, I saw a Fortune article that had some rarely seen photos of Steve Jobs -- including one that shows the young Mr. Jobs, at age 21, standing in front of his garage door -- where the Apple II would be launched. Great photos.
For those who are excited about the prospect of an Apple tablet, John C. Abell at Wired took the approach that the key to understanding Apple's future is to look at the legacy of Steve Jobs. This is an insightful and well crafted editorial. Highly recommended.
Calling all Apple security gurus. According to Networkworld, "Apple seeks new sheriff to lock up iPhones." The title is sensational, but the article itself is an excellent overview of the security architecture of the iPhone and how groups like the iPhone Dev Team have circumvented it. Read this article if you want to know more about how things have gone in the past and the prospects of unlocking your iPhone in the future.
Last but not least, here's a fabulous video story by Win Rosenfeld that looks at the history of Microsoft's OS advertising and does some comparisons with Apple. It's funny, irreverent, and blunt. Every Mac enthusiast will be ROTFL. Failure by MS has been sooooo much an option with most of their OS ads.
Jerry Seinfeld and Bill Gates in a misguided TV ad (link is above)