I am also becoming convinced that the Apple Watch changes things

Apple Watch 

The Watch
[Via asymco]

Before its launch, I said that the Apple Watch would be as much a watch as the iPhone is a phone. Recall that when the iPhone was launched it was anchored on three tentpoles, one of which was being a phone and that when the Apple Watch was launched it was also anchored on three tentpoles, one of which was being a watch.

Realizing that on the iPhone the “phone” is but an app — one which I find populated with FaceTime calls rather than cellular calls and whose messaging history is filled with iMessage threads rather than SMS — I consider it safe to say what the iPhone is today not as much a phone as a very personal computer. And so the question is whether the Watch will quickly leave behind its timekeeping anchor and move into being something completely different.

I had the chance to use the Watch for a few days and can say that timekeeping is probably as insignificant to its essence as it’s possible to be. It feels like a watch in the physical sense, looking good in the process (as the iPhone physically felt like a phone, also without being hard on the eyes)

However it does not feel like a watch conceptually. I find myself drawn into a conversation by its vocabulary of vibrations. I find myself talking to it. I find myself listening to it. I find myself glancing at information about faraway places. I find myself paying for things with it. I find myself checking into flights with it. I order transportation, listen to news, check live data streams and get myself nagged to exercise. It tells me where I am. It tells me where to go. It tells me when to leave.

Nothing ever worn on a wrist, or anywhere else for that matter, has done any of these things before. Not only are these things mesmerizing but they are done in a productive way on a wristwatch. In other words they are done in a mindful way.


I’ve written a few times about this – the iPhone is not a phone but a supercomputer in our pocket; the Apple Watch will be the device that interacts with the supercomputer in our pocket.

We can now use other devices to allow us to gain access to huge amounts of information while leaving the supercomputer in our pocket. And these devices can let that supercomputer service its computational needs while doing things that are easier for us.

I expect this to again change things.

How the next technological revolution starts


[Crossposted at the Space Trade Association]

There has been, and continues to be, a lot of discussion about what sort of technology will change everything – 3d printers, AI, space.

That is the wrong way to look at it. It is not technology that does the changing. Deep change comes from reorganizing ourselves around new principles in order to take the best advantage of the new technology.

Like Darwin’s finches on a new, uninhabited island of the Galapagos, we must change ourselves and our society in order to be successful in the new cultural environment.

Carlota Perez has written a lot about technological revolutions (the really impactful ones). For them to happen, there needs to be new, cheap access to resources, new infrastructure to move the resources around and then the organizations to take advantage of the first two.

The last one always requires social re-organization and discovery of operating principles needed to be successful in the cultural environment that is created.

The technology may be in use for a generation before someone figures out how to actually use it in ways to transform society.

Large construction projects had been around for 20 years until Carnegie opened up the first steel mill in Pittsburg to usher in an age of massive projects. Cheap steel available to a large market changed society, bringing us robber barons, unions, the Brooklyn Bridge and the Gilded Age.

The internal combustion engine using fossil fuels had been around for about 20 years until Ford produced the Model T and ushered in the age of mass production. Cheap transportation and mass markets changed society, bringing us international corporations, broadcast TV, pollution and men on the Moon.

Semiconductor technology had been around for over 20 years until Intel released the first microprocessor and ushered in the age of mass information. Cheap production of digital information and mass access changed society, bringing us supercomputers in our pockets, the Internet, streaming music and Facebook.

In each, it was more the organizing principles that were developed that made the new technology more productive. Not the technology itself.

So it won’t be the tech or resources  as much as the structure the human societies adopt to most take advantage of the new resources/infrastructure.

That is how everything changes.

The Internet never forgets – clam chowder about the iPhone

 Clam Chowder at Max's Cafe

‘Apparently None of You Guys Realize How Bad of an Idea a Touchscreen Is on a Phone’
[Via Daring Fireball]

Abdel Ibrahim, cherry-picking from Engadget commenters pooh-poohing the original iPhone keynote in 2007:

Apparently none of you guys realize how bad of an idea a touch-screen is on a phone. I foresee some pretty obvious and pretty major problems here.

I’ll be keeping my Samsung A707, thanks. It’s smaller, it’s got a protected screen, and it’s got proper buttons. And it’s got all the same features otherwise. (Oh, but it doesn’t run a bloatware OS that was never designed for a phone.)

Color me massively disappointed.

The Samsung A707 was a real beauty.


Clam chowder is made with the remnants of stupid things said years earlier.But not just saying something is wrong but with an air of finality that is 180 degrees away from where things really went.

They are a contrary indicator. Now every phone advertized looks like an iPhone. None look like the A707.

Missing waves of innovation and failing to cross the gulf created by a paradigm shift is a hallmark of so many today. We have to fix that.

Nasty phishing exploit uses social engineering to get vital info


Dyre Wolf attack swipes $1 million in wire transfers
[Via Engadget]

Hackers continue their brazen attacks on organizations and are even having their victims call them on the phone to hustle them out of their company’s money. That’s what IBM’s Security Intelligence division has discovered while researching a malware-based attack they have dubbed The Dyre Wolf that’s responsible for stealing more than $1 million. The coordinated campaign uses targeted spear phishing emails, malware and good ol’ chatting-on-the-phone social engineering to go after organizations that use wire transfers.


Pretty sophisticated. And very likely to work if people are not warned what to look for.

Moore’s law combats authoritarians in North Korea

 Forty years of removable storage

Immovable North Korean Authoritarianism Meets Irresistible Moore’s Law: Which Wins?
[Via Techdirt]

North Korea has become a by-word for oppressive tyranny and technological backwardness. But Reuters reports on an interesting development that may begin to chip away at both:

A $50 portable media player is providing many North Koreans a window to the outside world despite the government’s efforts to keep its people isolated — a symbol of change in one of the world’s most repressed societies.

By some estimates, up to half of all urban North Korean households have an easily concealed “notel”, a small portable media player used to watch DVDs or content stored on USB sticks that can be easily smuggled into the country and passed hand to hand.

People are exchanging South Korean soaps, pop music, Hollywood films and news programs, all of which are expressly prohibited by the Pyongyang regime, according to North Korean defectors, activists and recent visitors to the isolated country.

The Reuters story reports that the device has become so popular that the North Korean government felt obliged to legalize the “notel” — but with the requirement that they had to be registered. These versions must be fixed to official state television and radio channels, but the smuggled models are more versatile:

The low-voltage notel differs from the portable DVD players of the late 1990s in that they have USB and SD card ports, and a built-in TV and radio tuner. They can also be charged with a car battery — an essential piece of household equipment in electricity-scarce North Korea.


Technology is becoming so cheap and so small that millions can violate the law of North Korea. The VCR did something similar in Eastern Europe before the fall of the Berlin Wall – permit people to easily route around the totalitarian control of media.

Here a similar thing is happening. only technology has made it cheap, ubiquitous and easy to use.

Can North Korea allow 50% of the urban population to flout its media restrictions? 

Catch 22 – when preserving the evidence is a crime but so is destroying it.

 Black & White Justice

What Do You Do When Preserving Evidence Is Labeled ‘Possession’ And Destroying It Is A Felony?
[Via Techdirt]

Have fun with this hypothetical. A shared computer is found to contain child porn. What do you do?

Houston criminal defense lawyer Mark Bennett considered this hypothetical from a defense lawyer’s standpoint. At this point, there is (possibly) no investigation already in progress (at least none the client or lawyer are aware of) and there’s no way to say definitively who’s responsible for the images. What do you tell your client?

It’s illegal for him to continue possessing the images. So you can’t advise him to do nothing (and keep breaking the law).

The smart thing for him to do would be to destroy the hard drive (if I could, I would recommend swisscheesing it with a drill press).

But tampering with evidence is illegal under both Texas and federal law. Is it a crime to destroy the hard drive? To advise the client to do so?

This isn’t entirely a hypothetical situation. Scott Greenfield’s blog details a 2007 case involving exactly this sort of situation.


For my lawyer friends – a shared computer is found to contain child porn. 

What to do? It is illegal to possess the child porn but also illegal to delete it. Are the authorities likely to believe you when you say the computer is shared and the porn is not yours?

Or will they simply take the easy route and charge you (ie you do possess the porn after you learn of its existence), letting the courts sort it out after your reputation is ruined?

What a hot potato. Man, after reading this, I would be very worried if I had any shared computers. 

Orginal Apple logo returning

 Apple retro

Apple resurrects original six-color rainbow logo to celebrate diversity
[Via MacDailyNews]

CUPERTINO, California — April 1, 2015 — Apple® today announced that the company will resurrect the original rainbow Apple logo ahead of Apple’s 40th anniversary of the company’s founding on April 1, 1976 and also as an affirmation that Apple, an American company, believes that America must be a land of opportunity for everyone, in a diverse rainbow of colors, including race, religion, sexual orientation, and more. Apple’s executive team and board of directors believe the company logo should reinforce that belief.


Going back while going forward. Good for Apple.


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