Page 2 – News Debris for the Week of March 6th
The Future of the Mac

In apple-eye-ball-different-ball/">last week’s Particle Debris, I referred to Dan Dilger’s future of Steve Jobs’ iPad vision. This week, Author Dilger followed that up with “The future of Apple’s Macintosh.” Notable:

There are some potential ways Apple could rethink its Mac Pro strategy. The simplest change would be to open up its existing design to accommodate third party CPU and GPU processor upgrades. One path to doing this is enabled by Thunderbolt 3, which Apple demonstrated an early affinity for last fall in its design of new MacBook Pros.

By enabling third party PCIe enclosures connected with Thunderbolt 3, Apple could address the needs of high-end users of both MacBook Pros and desktop Mac Pro models. The reason why this hasn’t happened yet is obvious: Thunderbolt 3 wasn’t previously available. Simply updating the existing Mac Pro with Thunderbolt 3 would offer networked benefits for all Pro Mac users, desktop or mobile.

And then Dan Moren at Macworld ponders the situation in light of recent comments from Tim Cook: “Why the new Mac Pro might never come.

Would pro customers settle for a 2017 model simply upgraded with Thunderbolt 3 and new CPU/GPU?

Whether Apple intends to drop the Mac Pro, simply redesign it in a simple way, with more modern technology, or completely rethink the desktop Mac concept will be an interesting process to watch. Meanwhile, HP isn’t sitting around waiting for Apple to make a decision. “HP Caters to Creative/Tech Pros with Z2 Mini PC.” Neither is Microsoft.

More Debris

If you’re fantasizing about a 4K/UHD TV and don’t want to wait for the autumn sales, you may be asking yourself: what are the very best 4K/UHD TVs one can buy right now? Today. Here’s the verdict from Digital Trends. “The Best TV You Can Buy.” Perhaps Apple will announce its 4K/UHD/HDR Apple TV soon to drive one of these beauties. We can only hope.

The standard science fiction scenario is that AI’s will get out of control and destroy us all. Elon Musk worries about it. Steven Hawking worries about it. So does Bill Gates. How realistic is that fear? Scientific American’s Michael Shermer weighs in. “Artificial Intelligence Is Not a Threat—Yet.” Got that, Siri?

AI agent

Will super advanced AI agents really be the end of humankind?

Modern supercomputers now have speeds in many tens of petaflops. But storage for our (super)computers always seems too slow, constrained and expensive. Hard disks use about 100,000 atoms to store one bit of data. But what if we could reduce that? IBM has figured out how to use one atom to store one bit. Wow. Think about how Watson might use 100,000 times its current storage.

When Amazon announced a real brick-and-mortar bookstore in Seattle in 2015, we weren’t sure what to make of the company’s intentions. Now, it looks like things are working out nicely. “Amazon just confirmed its 10th book store, signaling this is way more than an experiment.

Being in the car business isn’t like dustin’ crops, kid. In hindsight, here are two articles that suggest a company like Apple never could have realistically developed the institutional and industrial capacity to be in the car business.

  1. Ford, not Apple, has a better chance with autonomous cars
  2. Tesla Doesn’t Even Have a Model 3 Beta Prototype Yet

If Tesla, with all its experience, can get into a bind like that, how could Apple have outdone Tesla? I have to ask. What were we thinking in 2016? What was Apple?

Finally, what would you like to see in iOS 11? Here’s an amazing concept video that has just about everything we’ve been asking for. Check it out and drool. Hey Apple! The gauntlet has been thrown down.


Particle Debris is a generally a mix of John Martellaro’s observations and opinions about a standout event or article of the week (preamble on page one) followed on page two by a discussion of articles that didn’t make the TMO headlines, the technical news debris. The column is published most every Friday except for holidays.

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One interesting observation:
Siri works fine for me normally. However if I have my VPN on it won’t connect. Neither will Dictation.
A bit of a security weakness, having to turn off VPN in order to use the feature and then having to remember to turn it on again.

W. Abdullah Brooks, MD

John: To answer what I think is your rhetorical but relevant question, ‘Should our AI agents be always with us?’, let me begin with, ‘Yes’ and add, ‘Where else but with us would they be if they are to be useful in a changing environment?’. Implicit in that second statement is that the competitive advantage is granted to that AI that is present when you need it, which is wherever you are at the time. The reason that the iPhone has displaced more capable and feature-rich cameras is that the camera with the competitive advantage is the one that is… Read more »

Lee Dronick

“Isn’t this doable now with current technology?”

iPad, iPhone, and Apple Watch


Re: Apple Assistant: Desired : A touchscreen in the kitchen (mounted on wall, permanently connected, by wire or by WiFi, to power & to the internet) with these capabilities: A. Always available (when home’s modem is on) for commands and questions (using a name other than Siri, so it won’t confuse other iphones/portables). Possible name: “Butler”, B. Displays time and timer, weather, recipes (How many cloves/minutes?), etc, all at once, C. Able to also play audio or video or Skype simultaneous to the above (B) capabilities, D. Can connect to other devices within the home for intercom, telecom or HomeKit… Read more »


AI: Pocket or Table:
When in doubt WDTDIST (What Did They Do In Star Trek)
Their AI interface was their communicator. First it was a discrete Communicator. Then it was the little badge on their shirt. But their AI was always with them.