Recent Articles By Bryan Chaffin [RSS]
Apple has posted a tribute to Robin Williams in the iTunes Store, one day after the tragic death of the comedian. The company has gathered 23 comedies and 16 dramas , from the World According to Garp, to Mrs. Doubtfire, to The Birdcage (one of my personal faves), to Popeye, most of the actors work is represented. Missing (that I noticed) is Mork and Mindy, the sitcom where he made a national name for himself. Season 1 of The Crazy Ones, his most recent show, which was canceled in May, is available, as is a live performance. I've seen a few comments suggesting Apple is "cashing in" by posting this tribute (thanks to @Rich_DS for the heads up), and that might be the silliest thing i've seen said about Apple in recent memory, and that's saying something. Companies offer tributes on the death of a popular music artist or actor all the time, and people like to remember those who have died. More importantly, the idea that the $200,000 to $1 million extra Apple could conceivably net from this tribute would matter to the company is absurd. If Apple had jacked up the price on Mr. Williams's movies, one might have a complaint (I saw a record store do that once). As it is, I would encourage anyone whingining about this to take some time out and re-examine their priorities.
Today's deal for TuneUp is going to help you clean up your iTunes library. TuneUp will fix mislabeled or missing song information (like "Track 01" or "Unknown Artist"), find missing cover art, find and removes duplicate music files, and deliver music videos, artist bios, concert alerts, social network integration, and more. This Mac and Windows app is usually priced at US$50, but through our deal you can get it for $19.95.
Apple released a corporate Diversity report on Tuesday, laying out the ethnic and gender breakdown of its work force and leadership ranks. That report shows that Apple's work force is more diverse than the population as a whole, with under-representation of whites, Hispanics, and blacks, and an over-representation of Asians. At the same time, males are massively over-represented as a whole, and in its leadership ranks, white males in particular rule the roost.
Apple has a new commercial out called Jason's Verse. It features Jason Hall, the cofounder of Slow Roll in Detroit. Slow Roll is a leisurely bicycle ride through the streets of Detroit where up to 3,000 people "witness the revitalization of Detroit from two wheels." The commercial follows Mr. Hall as goes through the day with his iPad planning a Slow Roll, which begins and ends at a local bar or restaurant. USA Today has a story about the man featured in the commercial—it's a cool story. Check out the commercial in full below.
ChangeCoin has taken us several steps closer to viable micropayments with a service called ChangeTip. With ChangeTip, people can "tip" each other in amounts ranging from fractions of a penny to $25 in Bitcoins. They can do it across Twitter, on YouTube, Google+, Github, Reddit, StockTwits, and Tumblr, with more sites and services coming.
Ever wondered why the remote for the Apple TV has just three buttons? According to an inside look at Apple University, Apple's team started with the idea of what a remote control does. Then they pared it down until it was stripped to its purest form, an aluminum stick with three buttons. Compare that to one of Sony's remotes designed for Google TV. 78 buttons. It's a mess.
Meet Rob Frankel. He's a branding expert. In fact, he's, "The best branding expert on the planet." We know this because he tells us so on his blog. It must therefore be true. Mr. Frankel has a message for Apple fanboys, and it's earning him a spot in the Apple Death Knell Counter. Bryan Chaffin explains.
Apple's rocket-like ascent to become the world's most valuable company has brought with it the booby prize of being a pawn of international diplomacy. Apple and other U.S. tech giants are being targeted by China (and Russia) as tensions between all three countries rise over spying allegations.
Apple released Digital Camera RAW Compatibility Update 5.06 on Thursday. The update adds support for RAW image files for ten new cameras from Nikon, Olympus, Panasonic, and Sony.