During last night’s live show celebrating 100 episodes of Dyscultured, we gave away two of these snazzy looking t-shirts (courtesy of the fine folks at Campbell & Brown’s T-Shirt Town) and we’ve got some available for those who pitch in to help us get through the next 100 episodes (and beyond). With a minimum $10 donation to the cause (Canadian funds, of course) you get a great shirt at a great deal and help us pay for the things that let us do what we do here at Dyscultured. Plus you can show off your true colours as a Dyscultured “dysciple.” Isn’t patronage fun?

You could donate less if you want – or not at all – but then you won’t get the shirt. Don’t “dysappoint” us.

Either way, they’re here if you want ’em!

Thanks for your support – and we’ll have the full podcast of last night’s extravaganza up later tonight. It’ll be available to listen to or download right here on the site. Better yet, just subscribe to the podcast and you’ll never miss out…

“Gripping any phone will result in some attenuation of its antenna performance with certain places being worse than others depending on the placement of the antennas. This is a fact of life for every wireless phone. If you ever experience this on your Phone 4, avoid gripping it in the lower left corner in a way that covers both sides of the black strip in the metal band, or simply use one of many available cases.” – Apple statement on antenna issues with iPhone 4

Yeah, I’m left-handed.

It’s no secret I’ve been a big proponent of Apple since Anthony and I started DyscultureD – both the podcast and this blog. I’m a big fan of pretty much everything they do. So much so, I’m usually able to tolerate the little things that they do that are minor annoyances from time to time.

But I’ve noticed that my loyalty is starting to waver. In that last paragraph alone, I used terms such as “pretty much”,”usually able to tolerate” and “little things that they do that are minor annoyances from time to time.” The problem is that the terms are quickly changing to “some of”,”getting weary” and “many things that they do that are becoming increasingly irritating on a regular basis.”

Not good, Apple.

There’s talk of a tablet, which may or not be true (more on Apple rumours in a future post), and I’m hoping that they don’t go that route. I want a netbook, not a tablet. I already have one of those – it’s called an iPhone. As a writer, I want a small laptop that has an ACTUAL keyboard and lets me get what I need to get done in a familiar way. I don’t want a tablet – and while some higher-end users (read: those with lots of disposable income) will pick one up, I certainly won’t. I’ll go out and buy that item I do want – at a much lower price.

Apple is becoming a victim of its own hype. We’ve all seen the parody of Feist’s “1,2,3,4” and it hits the nail right on the head. Innovation doesn’t always have to be about introducing something new to replace something that’s not-so-new. I still have a first generation iPhone and can’t see myself upgrading anytime soon. My iPhone works just fine, thank you very much. If it didn’t run the software I need, then I’d be in the market for a 3G or 3GS, but it does. iPhone innovation is being championed not just by Steve & Company, but by many people – namely the iPhone App developers. The App Store is the major innovation at this point – the hardware is just creating more opportunity for further innovation on the software end. The software available makes the iPhone less limiting a device (mind you, apple doesn’t help itself by blocking apps, but that’s been covered elsewhere and I don’t want to go too much Dennis miller on you).

Don’t get me wrong – I love my MacBook Pro and what I’ve got as far as Apple products go right now. But over the past couple of years I’ve dumped some software/features for something better/more suitable for my needs. They include:

  • Mail.app (switched to Gmail & Google Reader for RSS feeds)
  • Pages (switched to Scrivener & Google Docs)
  • Safari (switched to Flock…and playing with Chrome)
  • iCal (switched to Google Calendar)
  • MobileMe (CHILD, PLEASE!!)
  • iDisk (switched to Dropbox)
  • iWeb (switched to RapidWeaver or good ol’ WordPress)
  • Stickies (switched to Evernote)
  • Spotlight (Quicksilver – even in 10.6 it still works well for me)

And on the bubble…

  • iTunes (definitely improved with iTunes 9, but Spotify has me intrigued if it ever arrives in Canada)

I even tried Pathfinder over Finder, but just couldn’t wrap my head around it in my limited time using it.  That said, I’m still open to give it another whirl.

Apple made a 12″ PowerBook that has been sorely missed since it was discontinued when Intel chipsets were introduced to the portable line.  Sure, the new 13″ MacBook Pro is close, but it’s still 1 inch too big.  Or in the case of what they need to make for a netbook, about 3-4 inches too big.

My suggestion to Apple is that if you want to expand your reach, appeal to the masses.  Coca-Cola stopped shipping Cherry Coke to Canada for a reason: no one bought enough of it (although I did my best).  When Coke Blak was around, I sure didn’t see any “suits” drinking it instead of Starbucks.  That’s why it faded to “blak.”

The netbook market is where it’s at.  Apple…make a GREAT netbook.  Make it impossible to ignore and impossible to even believe.  Then price it accordingly.  Win THAT market.  Save the tablet for another day.  For many of us, a tablet would be about as useful as the ones Moses had on Mt. Sinai – and just as fragile.

(Note from Mike:  I normally don’t delve into political discussion of this nature, but I feel that the situation in BC has gotten to the point where it is BEYOND dysfunction.  I’d like to say this type of rant won’t happen again, but it probably will.)

Dear Premier Campbell,

It is with great sadness and a heavy heart that we, the taxpayers of British Columbia, must cancel the agreement you made with yourself and other MLAs and inform you that your 29% pay increase will no longer be binding.

In these tough economic times where the public is seeing an annual 6% increase in MSP costs, the need to raise taxes via the HST (garnering a nice bonus from the Federal government) and the massive cuts to arts funding, we feel that those who we pay to make these clearly sound decisions also need to contribute.

We plan to put the 29% that was being given to the MLAs into a fund known as “General Revenue.”  Don’t worry – we’re not sure what that means, either.

Sincerely yours,
The Taxpayers of British Columbia

P.S.  The word “sincerely” is defined as “in a genuine way.”  We only mention this because we are certain you don’t know the meaning of the word.

Show Notes

Full Dysclosure
  • Facebook Adds More Faces – Facebook buys FriedFeed
  • Twitter ReTweets Itself – Phase 1 of Twitter’s Project ReTweet rolls out
  • The Dog Days Of Summer, eh? – Canadian programming’s Summer influence on TV is less than stellar
  • The Rumour Mill – Giving Mike more fodder for his AND THAT’S THE WAY IT – WHAT?! segment
Websites Of The Week
Musical Selection
  • The Wilderness