Busy busy

by Volker Weber

I know, I know. Apple has new iPods, new iMacs, you can watch the Steve Show and iTunes is at version 6 now. Pretty neat updates. Apple had the best year ever, but stock is trading below 50 instead of above 55. I was simply too busy to pay attention.

Other things I missed: Palm's brand new Z22 and the TX. The Tungsten and Zire names are being dropped from now on. Well, the Z22 is the first "Zire" that I like since the original came out and the TX is very, very late. This should have been the T5, latest. I haven't seen one yet, but from my experience with the Lifedrive, my guess is that I would advise to get the TX instead and buy an additional 2 gig SD card to up the storage.


iPod - cool, not revolutionary
iMac - nice, interesting that they are sticking iSights in every machine!
iTunes - good, but $1.99 per item is a bit steep. MORE TV content please (HBO, maybe?) and movies, of course. But the big downer is low-res...

Accessories and other stuff is the real interesting part. Universal Dock is meant for iPod, but it also is an interface for the remote - does that mean you can stick it on any Mac and add the really cool Front Row software eventually? I wrote a small entry on Front Row as a MCE Killer and thoughts about the mac mini.

Kevan Emmott, 2005-10-13

I wish I could watch the Steve Show - but I get just one frame every 2 - 3 seconds on that video, with my bright new installation of Quicktime 7. Perhaps Apple is telling me that it really is time for me to upgrade from my 'Blue & White' G3 at last...

Nick Daisley, 2005-10-13

I wonder why I should get an old T5 if I can get a brand new TX for $50 less including Wi-Fi? Ok, you get only 128 MB of Memory instead of 256 MB and the T5 processor is slightly faster (416 to 312 MHz). And the money I save I would spend for the SD-Card...

Wolfgang Schwerber, 2005-10-13

Wolfgang: I guess that was a typo by Volker. Wasn't it...?

Frank Koehntopp, 2005-10-13

Front Row is crying out for an expanded Airport Express that can beam those nice menus and content to your TV I reckon.

I'm still mystified as to why they leapt versions from 5.0.1 to 6.0 for iTunes. iTunes 6.0 is no quantum leap. I suppose this is more a triumph of marketing over good developer sense ;o)

Ben Poole, 2005-10-13

Wolfgang and Frank: Yes, I meant to write TX.

Ben, the AE has a serious lag of at least one second. And that is for music. If you had this for video and would show the menu on screen, you would not be able to operate it if everything happens a second after you did it.

Volker Weber, 2005-10-13

Ben, on the iTunes 6 name: Something went terribly wrong at Apple. Steve was to keynote in Paris and then it was called off. I think they did not have their stuff ready yet. So they hosted this event less than a month later. After the quarterly results. Had they done this before the stock would not have tanked.

What does that have to do with iTunes 6? Simple. It should have been iTunes 5. But when the project slipped they needed to make two versions of it. Alas 5 and 6. iTunes 5 was not far from 4.x. The big new features had to wait for this event.

Volker Weber, 2005-10-13

What I really don't understand is Apple's idiotic decision to drop FireWire support on the iPods! :-(

Christian Bogen, 2005-10-13

Want to buy Woodstock? ;-)

Volker Weber, 2005-10-13

No, but thanks for the offer—luckily Calvin (20 GB, 3G) is still going strong! :-)

Christian Bogen, 2005-10-13

Thanks vowe ;o) I had no idea there was a lag with AE. Hmmm... how do the other wireless media systems fare I wonder? (e.g. the opensource XBox system).

As for the comment re Firewire and iPods, that does make sense unfortunately. USB2 is, frankly, a more popular standard than Firewire for PCs and Macs. If you want to keep the cost / form factor of an iPod down, you're only going to go for one type of connection, so USB2 wins out I guess.

Ben Poole, 2005-10-13

You are transmitting from iTunes over a CSMA/CD network without QoS (how is that for alphabet soup?). If a frame goes missing and needs to be retransmitted, the AE wants to have something in the buffer to play. Now add recoding on both ends to and from Apple Lossless and encryption on top of WEP/WPA and you know where these guys are spending their time.

This is the reason why you cannot view a movie on your beamer and transmit the sound to an AE. It would never be in sync.

Volker Weber, 2005-10-14

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I explain difficult concepts in simple ways. For free, and for money. Clue procurement and bullshit detection.


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