I've had my Kindle for eight days now. I've bought eight books for it (well, seven plus a short story) and read three of them, installed over 90 other free ebooks, spent time browsing the Web, and... I actually read the manual. On the Kindle, naturally.
It's the law of entropy: as your digital music collection increases, you're bound to run into mislabeled songs, duplicate tracks in multiple file formats, and other problems. Apple's iTunes does a fine job of displaying song data and letting you edit it--as long as the song's in a format that iTunes supports (if you try to import a WMA file, for instance, iTunes will ask if you want to convert it first). Microsoft's Windows Media Player has an advanced tag editor, but it's buried a few menu options down, and it only lists songs … Read more
Tim O'Reilly writes a thoughtful piece on what we can learn from iTunes, returning to a familiar theme for him: the Internet-enabled address book and software above the level of a single device. The general point is that software should be architected to be Internet-aware and, one step further, should make useful connections between different, disparate applications/data sources.
It's more than a programming language designed to run on a wide range of operating systems and hardware platforms. That was Java. This is now.
In the Internet age, we really shouldn't be limited by silly things like software monopolies, not when the world has given way to a potentially more troubling and much more powerful monopoly of data management:
iTunes needs to work together more seamlessly with other applications like iPhoto, and the internet-enabled address book I keep hoping for. Right now, when you sync your phone, you have both applications open up, competing for your attention. As more data needs to be synced to the phone, you don't want this to turn into a cacophony....… Read more
This month's Wired feature on Universal Music Group CEO Doug Morris--which was posted online--has received a lot of commentary, most of it damning Morris as representative of a clueless and mortally wounded industry. The following quote, in which Morris talks about the dawn of the MP3 era, has drawn particular interest:
"There's no one in the record company that's a technologist. That's a misconception writers make all the time, that the record industry missed this. They didn't. They just didn't know what to do." He goes on to explain that he … Read more
The Apple QuickTime zero-day exploits are also targeting systems running Apple Safari 3.0 on Windows, Firefox, and Microsoft's Vista, XP, Internet Explorer 6, and IE7, according to a posting late Monday night on the SANS Internet Storm Center blog.
SANS also reminded people to undo the workarounds once Apple develops a patch for the security problem. Otherwise, the QuickTime streams won't work on your system.
Security researchers are warning that exploit code has been published that can take advantage of an extremely critical security flaw in a protocol supported … Read more
A reader responding to my The Beatles on iTunes? Who Cares? rant came up with this great summation: "iTunes are to audio what McDonald's is to hamburgers, but if this is how the public wants to buy music, then let 'em have it." Right on! Sound quality doesn't matter anymore, just the so-called convenience of downloading 1s and 0s at the cheapest possible price, or better yet for free. Why buy the complete "Sgt Pepper" when you can just get "With A Little Help From My Friends"? That's where it's … Read more
This has been quite a year for Apple, but Steve Jobs' magic wand doesn't always work.
In March, Apple unveiled Apple TV, the company's attempt at tackling a question that has eluded the PC industry for years: how can we get people to watch content delivered over the Internet in their living rooms on their big-screen TVs? When he announced the product last September, Jobs said that Apple TV "completes the story" of Apple's bid to reinvent the way people watch movies and television shows.
Now, as we head into the holiday shopping season, it … Read more
Edward Burns' latest film, Purple Violets, won't be coming to a theater near you, but you won't have to go far to see it. The movie is available to anyone with $13 and an account at iTunes. It is the first time a feature film has premiered at the Apple media store.
Burns first landed on the scene in Hollywood with his highly successful 1995 film The Brothers McMullen. He wrote, directed, produced and starred while managing to spend less than $30,000 putting together the vehicle that would pave the way for his role acting in Saving Private Ryan.