Particle Debris (wk. ending 2/11) The Kiss of Death


The iPhone is the new Star Trek Tricorder. All it needs is a barometer and a smoke detector. And, now, it appears that the iPhone can also serve as a sleep aid. No, I’m not talking about the vibrate mode in the ringer. Here’s the story: “Newfound Use for the iPhone: Sleep Aid.


Of course, there are lot of really useful apps for the iPhone, but sometimes I think developers are going overboard. I tweeted this week, in sarcasm, that there’s a new iPhone app that will keep track of Purgatory time for Catholics. With an in-app purchase, you can buy indulgences. (Don’t write me! It’s a joke.)

There’s a popular form of parody nowadays. Take a foreign language film snippet, exploit the characters, the emotions, and the on-screen action by adding your own subtitles to tell a whole new story. This is one of the best I’ve seen and pokes severe fun at Apple for dropping the Xserve. WARNING: R-rated language. Serious ADULT fun here - not for kids.

CAUTION: R-rated for language

Microsoft’s Steve Ballmer is “Said to Seek More Management Changes” by replacing previous product executives with those who have a stronger engineering background. Being a good captain, it looks like Steve Ballmer himself will go down with the ship. Steve Jobs summed it up with BusinessWeek in 2004. It only took Microsoft six years to catch on.

What is Apple’s most potent weapon in the tablet wars? I’ll give you a few seconds to ponder that while this page loads.

If you’re thinking about becoming an attorney and have figured out that TV theatrics on law shows are just that, take a look at this analysis. It’s a summary of the legal situation between Oracle and Google over Java copyright and patent infringement in Android. If you can get through the entire page, love what you’re reading, are ready for more, your appetite is fired up for the law, and you don’t get a headache, then you have a future as an attorney.

Speaking of Java, here’s an interesting analysis of stewardship. “A year later: Has Oracle ruined or saved Sun?” It’s must reading for people interested in the plight of all Sun technologies: Solaris, Java, OpenOffice, NetBeans, MySQL etc.

Earlier today, I wrote about competition for the Apple iPad. To presume that iOS is perfect, unbeatable, and has all the modern features it needs right now is a mistake. Ryan Fass (@ryanfaas), someone I steadfastly follow on Twitter, weighs in on that and gives specific, sobering examples. “Is Apple’s iOS too static compared to Android, Windows Phone 7, or webOS?

Steve and iPad

Another fellow I follow is Om Malik (@om). Not only does he do great work as a tech columnist, but he’ll often wander over into more philosophical articles with a technical foundation. Just like me. If you’ve been working too hard lately or have been thinking about changing your tech life, I strongly recommend: “Change Is Good, But It’s Also Really Hard.” It’s the best thing I’ve read in years. Five stars.

If you’re consistent reader of TMO, you know that I’ve been focusing on ebooks and epublishing lately. With Borders Books, perhaps, about to file for bankruptcy and the popularity of ebooks on the iPad, this article is a great twist-of-fate story. You’ll smile. “Is there hope for small bookstores in a digital age?” By the way, I found that story on my iPad.

Finally, this week Nokia announced that it’s going to rework its partnership with Microsoft and throw itself on its sword by deprecating Symbian and embracing Windows Phone 7 for it’s future smartphones. Some people think that’ll work, and some think it’s the kiss of death for Nokia. To assess how that will work out, let’s take a look at all the previous strategic partnerships with Microsoft and see how the other partner fared. This is required reading for my readers: “In memoriam: Microsoft’s previous strategic mobile partners” by Horace Dediu.