Tag Archives: Apple

Adaption 103

I just had an idea, it got to me when I was tweeting with a person I know. A few minutes later my mind grabbed back to the age when I had a Dell laptop. Then an idea grabbed me. I wonder why Apple never considered this. When you have more than one device, when you need your MacBook Pro or air too regularly. Did no one consider the power of the docking station, or the port replicator? Instead of connecting device after device, having a station on your desk where you can connect your iPod touch, your iPad, your MacBook, iMac or Mac Pro to all with one replicator in the centre of it all. A setting where they are all connected, with the station also connecting to an external keyboard, external drive and optionally a larger screen. The power of direct connectivity when you get home. The songs, the tablet and all of it to a  larger screen, more storage and not to forget interacting all with one another. No worry whether you had the document on your tablet, your laptop or even your iMac or Mac Pro. Connecting them all through one station. You see, when you have one Apple product, you might have more, I do and many other do too. Even for non Apple products the setting of connecting laptops, desktops, music solutions, and tablets, all whilst giving any the power to connect to Bluetooth speakers is becoming increasingly important, especially as streaming will go from device to device. A multi system station, no matter if it is a docking station or more aptly seeing it as a connecting port replicator will take the foreground in the near future. I synch my iPad, and soon my iPod touch (my iPod Classic will not connect), a larger setting of interactivity is required and consider that when you get home, via the replicator. Connecting to data on tablet, laptop and desktop they can all grasp the data of one another and they can all be used in conjunction. A setting that none have offered, always in the second degree, so why not in the first degree? That would be real innovation and so far none have opted for it, They all want to do each other work, they all want to do the same, but the laptop makes you less mobile, the tablet has its own restrictions, but on the road it is OK. And so on, yet at home we need access to all, we need it all without a larger setting and the cloud is too often a limitation, especially when it is confidential data. The people need their secure environment and anyone stating that the cloud is a safe space is lying to you. Some give you “Cloud security is tight, but it’s not infallible. … But the bigger risk with cloud storage is privacy. Even if data isn’t stolen or published, it can still be viewed. Governments can legally request information stored in the cloud, and it’s up to the cloud services provider to deny access.” 

So why not set the stage where it is with you and with you alone? And when we look at the data breaches with. Microsoft, Estee Lauder, MGM Resorts, Facebook, Zoom, Magellan Health, Cognizant, Nintendo, Twitter, and Whisper. These are places with large infrastructures and cyber sections and they could not keep THEIR data safe, how much of a chance do you have? I am not anti-cloud. It has its uses, but it has a bad safety reputation, as such the replicator gives more and offer more too. It is just a thought, but it Tok me less than 30 minutes to seek out part of all this and write it down and when we add the streaming gaming platform the need increases rapidly.

All devices that need connection, whilst the connection does not always exist. 

So consider what you have and how easy it would be to connect it. Now, if you only have 2 devices the value is not really there, but consider a desktop and a laptop connected giving the user access to both, would that make it? I thought initially to connect the Apple devices, but the setting is much larger and will grow over time. Consider that the MacBook Air has a max of 2TB and so does the new iMac, so why have 2 backups when both can be connected and be connected to a much larger drive, seagate offers 4TB for $99, WD has 6TB for $200, and that offers perspectives to keep your music in one location, not on all locations. Option after option are added as we see more devices connected and I am surprised that no one took it into that direction, especially Apple. 

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When it was about safety

That is the stage I was woken up to, a stage that is no longer about ‘safety’ but about convenience. And people will pass corpses just to give marketing a chance to set the phrase “This will be a lot more convenient to you” and it is a dangerous step. In one direction the news is good news. It shows that not only was I on the money when I wrote ‘As banks cut corners’ on September 7th, a mere three weeks later we see ‘Researchers find Apple Pay, Visa contactless hack’ (at https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-58719891). Here we are given “researchers were able to make a Visa payment of £1,000 without unlocking the phone or authorising the payment”, a setting that evolved for people to bloody lazy to unlock their phones. Lets be clear this is a setting regarding commuters to make quick contactless payments without unlocking their phone. That gate is coming up and you know this 30 seconds in advance and unlocking the phone takes mere seconds. So when we get in opposition “Visa’s view was that this type of attack was “impractical”” did anyone tell VISA that they are marketing themselves as a bunch of tossers? There is nothing impractical about £1,000, 20 hits a day and the young entrepreneurs are sitting on a healthy income and it will take time to solve it after which someone else can make a new hack.

And Apple is not free of blame either. The response “This is a concern with a Visa system but Visa does not believe this kind of fraud is likely to take place in the real world given the multiple layers of security in place”” gives criminals the stage where they can get away with it for some time. So how long until low income people can get a transit ghost? And all this is happening because there was no proper testing. Yet, it is an outlier and it was unlikely that people were seeking in this direction, but that will soon change. All because people were not willing to go through the inconvenience of unlocking their phone. So how long until this stage evolves beyond the Metro? Your first cup of coffee, your quick lunch, your cinema line, and that list goes on, all because of convenience we now see a stage where Apple and VISA are optionally catering to crime and organised crime (if they have a Filofax it is very organised crime). 

A stage that is out in the open and we see deflection from VISA and to a smaller extent from Apple too. In this it is Dr Andreea Radu, of the University of Birmingham who seems to be the voice of reason with ““It has some technical complexity – but I feel the rewards from doing the attack are quite high”, she said, adding that if unaddressed “in a few years these might be become a real issue””, in addition we see that Samsung Pay and MasterCard cannot be exploited like that. So there is a stage where this goes (as the academics say) tits up. Concert tickets, beverages in any trade show all places where it is about small transactions and as they are all about the convenience of the people the criminals get to have a laughing feast, a feast with all the trimmings because the banks, in this case Financial Institutions cut another corner, optionally straight into your bank balance. 

Enjoy your contactless payments today.

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Sphere or Cube?

In continuation of yesterday, we have today. This is a direct consequence of time. Yet, that is not how some spin it and it is about spinning. In this we introduce Australia’s own spin master ACCC. They decided to inform us via the Guardian with ‘Google’s dominance of Australia’s online advertising needs to be reined in, says ACCC’, I personally wonder who they are speaking off (plenty of volunteers) but the article struck a chord, especially after what we saw today. I am not stating that limits should be drawn, I am not stating that the article is completely wrong. Yet the stage as it is painted does not add up, especially as some of the stakeholders are now in a stage where they painted themselves into corners. There is no real timeline here, because the article is actually quite good, but I am better (and a lot older). So let’s take you through the threads unravelling them one by one. Let’s be clear, there is no real lying here by the article writer. Yet when you see the unravelled strings, you might wonder how they got to this article. Time is the first element. The article is spun like it was a continuation of events, but it is not and more importantly the weavers seem driven to keep larger players Microsoft, Amazon and IBM out of the limelight. In light of this lets take a look at the article (at https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2021/sep/28/accc-calls-for-new-powers-to-rein-in-googles-dominance-of-australian-online-ads) and look at that first thread. 

The first thread is “Google’s takeover of ad companies, including DoubleClick and Admob, as well video platform YouTube, have helped to further solidify its position, the ACCC said” the fact that these companies became part of Google is not in question, the statement “takeover of ad companies” however is. You see, YouTube was bought in 2006. In 2005 it was launched as a “an American online video sharing and social media platform owned by Google”, the players here namely Steve Chen, Chad Hurley, and Jawed Karim became multimillionaires overnight. After a golden idea a year later was tossed for a little over $1,500,000,000. In this we get from Steve Chen himself “he was inspired by how the search giant monetised without hurting their users. “It translated over to Youtube as well. There are people that create content, view content and pay for content,” he said.” Take here that the operative part was “without hurting their users” and it is important. Look at personal video’s, look at reviews of hardware (Hero 10, PS5) review of books, games and music, even video’s of songs. It all benefits the people, all the people. It was created in 2005 and sold in 2006. It was not until 2008 when they gained 480p videos, AFTER Google acquired it. Thanks to GoPro and DJI we now see 4K movies of cities. In all this time there was no mention of advertisement, the corporate world was not ready and not prepared for YouTube. 

Double Click was pure advertisement, and even as it was founded in a basement (behind the washing machine) by Kevin O’Connor and Dwight Merriman. It offered technology products and services for a mere handful of advertisers that included Microsoft, General Motors, Coca-Cola, Motorola, L’Oréal, Palm, Inc., Apple Inc., Visa Inc., Nike, Inc., and Carlsberg Group, and this is important! So why is this important? You see DoubleClick was acquired by an equity firm named Hellman & Friedman. Basically a greed driven Wall Street player who saw that this would be worth something over time. And the two clients that DoubleClick had (Microsoft and Apple) never saw the potential, even as they were trying to break through in all the markets that Google had created, we see things like MSN Search, aQuantive and adCenter (renamed to Bing Ads) as well as Search Alliance (renamed to Yahoo! Bing Network). Microsoft used a 20 year old tactic, why create when you can acquire. Google acquired too but evolved the segments into behemoth, all whilst there is every chance that the Bing Network would be unable to properly identify the word ‘Behemoth’. A stage we do not see in the Guardian article because it raises too many questions. The one given part here is that only Google knew what it was doing, the rest merely tried to invoke invoices on the corporate world, Google tried to cater to the greatest denominator here, they tried to adhere to the needs of the seeker, the searcher, and as Steve Chen states “without hurting their users”, a stage that was a winning mixture and we do not see that in the ACCC spin, do we?

Then we get thread two “Rod Sims told Guardian Australia a key issue facing news sites and other users of ad tech is they did not know how much revenue ad tech providers like Google were making from each advertisement served up to readers”, in this I find ‘a key issue facing news sites’ as well as ‘they did not know how much revenue ad tech providers like Google were making from each advertisement’. It’s almost like hearing a toddler ask “these juggling tits, do they always provide milk?” In all this does it matter how much the advertiser makes? How often was this asked of Yellow pages or the advertisement moguls in New York? And it is important, because this hits Microsoft as well (Bing Ads, or Microsoft Advertising) Google was upfront in this, they even made it public in their documentation. “No matter how much you bid, you are only charged $0.01 more than the previous winner”, so if we see the bids $12, $9, $2.36, and $0.99 number three pays $1.00, number two pays $1.01 and number one pays $1.02, not $12. A setting NO advertisement company EVER offered, it was all about how much they could rake in and in their defence a system like this was not possible before the digital age. More important, the digital innovators (Google) took that step from day one (well, almost day one). A customer facing setting that prolongs the visibility of marketing departments because they can advertise more and longer, a stage they never faced before, yet the Guardian never touches on that, do they? It was all about the threat that the friends of the ACCC see, not what we actually experience. Oh, and when it comes to advertisement. Why is there no mention of Facebook, or Amazon for that matter? 

The article gives us that there needs to be a border and there should be limits, but is that up to the ACCC? 

So when we see “if you want to block certain companies advertising on your website, it’s very hard to do that through Google” there is a choice, do not advertise on your website, or get your own channel, and, oh…. Here is a thing, Google states “To give you editorial control over the ads that may appear on your site, AdSense offers several options for reviewing and blocking ads. There are various reasons why you might not want certain ads to show on your site. You may have content or business reasons, or philosophical issues. Maybe you have a vegan food blog and you don’t want to show an ad for a steakhouse”, as I personally see it Sims engaged in some forms of non truths (aka lies). And that is the beginning of a much larger station. The ACCC is the BS caterer of their friends and the Guardian did exactly what it was told to do, not inform us but to perpetrate issues that are not really there. And the entire article gives no mention of AdSense at all, why is that? It might not fit the needs of the ACCC, does it?

Consider what you are offered and vet the information, it is important that you do, you are given a pile of goods that are glued together, a setting of 10.000 cubes, glued together so that we see a sphere, but is it a sphere? I will let you decide.

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Who is correct?

There is a larger stage on what is right versus what is correct. It is not always clear and we are all biased, me included. There are those who make claims that I am entertaining, but I do not know anything. It is their call and it might be correct. I worked in IT and in automation since 1981, so I have been around a while. When I offered my bosses some version of Facebook in 1997 they all rejected it stating that it had no future. It was merely n idea and it was nowhere near as advanced as Facebook. It was a free website and chatting platform with us in the middle offering advertisements in the middle, it had no future they stated. Now we have Facebook which arrived 4 years later, now a global economy surrounds it. 

So when I took notice of ‘Google, in fight against record EU fine, slams regulators for ignoring Apple’ (at https://www.reuters.com/technology/google-fight-against-record-eu-fine-slams-regulators-ignoring-apple-2021-09-27/) some thoughts went through my mind. We see “The European Commission fined Google in 2018, saying that it had used Android since 2011 to thwart rivals and cement its dominance in general internet search”, in the first most rivals were still trying to get their heads around the digital world. In this 2011 is important, TechCrunch gives us “Patents are increasingly used to block innovation in courtrooms rather than create innovations in the marketplace, and we saw this problem reach epic proportions in 2011. Patent trolls continued to extort tech companies large and small. But the patent wars spilled over to the major industry players themselves as everyone pointed their patent arsenals at Android.” In this, how many patent trolls did the EU arrest and there is a larger stage on the realisation that the secondary field of patents is used, the ability to block others. A legal setting that is validated by the short sighted and at ties greedy law entrepreneurs. And we see this more clearly in 2012 with ‘Why Microsoft spent $1 billion on AOL’s patents’ (at https://www.cnet.com/news/why-microsoft-spent-1-billion-on-aols-patents/), a stage the law and the lawgivers are eager to circumvent and in this Apple (Steve Jobs) was not innocent from either, but lets be clear, the law allowed for this. And we see the one Techcrunch gemstone “as everyone pointed their patent arsenals at Android”, Google was not innocent, they never were, but they were not the evil party here and that needs to be made clear. So when we are given (by CNet) “according to a source close to the situation, Google didn’t even bid on the portfolio”, it seemingly makes Google even less evil. And when we return to the Reuters story and we accept ““The Commission shut its eyes to the real competitive dynamic in this industry, that between Apple and Android,” Google’s lawyer Matthew Pickford told the court.” We also need to see “Commission lawyer Nicholas Khan dismissed Apple’s role because of its small market share compared with Android”, I personally wonder what kind of drugs Nicholas Khan is on and can I have some please? The brands using Android are Samsung, Oppo, Huawei, Google, Motorola, Oneplus, Lenovo and a dozen others that use Android, yet iOS products are Apple products, as such we need to see that there is a 70% use of Android over ALL these brands and the 23% is Apple, Apple alone. When we see the bungles (forced USB-C chargers) and this setting, we need to wonder the words by Matthew Pickford “The Commission shut its eyes to the real competitive dynamic in this industry”, that might not be far from the mark. There should be space for evolution, but is one sided evolution truly that or is that the beginning of handing the technology market to China? Especially with HarmonyOS in the design stage it is currently in. The middle East and the far east is ripe for HarmonyOS, the last thing we need is the EU screwing that up too. 

So does that make the EU wrong (not legally wrong)? To be honest, I cannot tell. Yet when we see “Bringing Apple into the picture doesn’t change things very much. Google and Apple pursue different models” we need to wonder what this is really about and this is after Microsoft destroyed Netscape to get sole advantage in browser world, even as some give us “The most innovative company in the computer industry in the last 10 years is dead”, it had been crippled around the time when we got Windows 2000. After which Microsoft screwed the world over again with an utter version of inferiority (Bing). That is how I see it, but feel free to disagree (which is your right).

So whilst we are eager to give Google the Clown card and all kinds of accusations, we see that an Apple phone costs $2369, whilst the Samsung is $1399, Oppo $1299, Asus $1199, Motorola $899, Nokia $449, and Google Pixel 5 $1199. A stage where Apple is pricing itself out of the market and it had been doing so for some time. But this is not about Apple, this is about Google, a brand that is open to others, It used what was available at the time and the rest was nowhere near. Am I wrong? Legally I might be, but then I never saw the 100,000 pages and I reckon I would be able to find a few options that blows the statement “Bringing Apple into the picture doesn’t change things very much. Google and Apple pursue different models”. You see, the Browser had another contender, Yahoo. It lost too much marketshare because the Google search was vastly superior and the patent shows just how superior it was because the people behind it took a long hard look at what the PEOPLE needed, Yahoo, Microsoft and others focussed on what businesses were willing to pay for, a very different stage. I personally believe that this stage of adherence and compliance has been largely ignored. A stage that puts Apple, Microsoft, and a few others in the dock of accusations as well. The stage of adherence to business and I personally believe that the EU is all about that, less about people and that bites me, that partially offends me. To lose in one setting and then openly and bias based attack Google is offensive. Google was never innocent, but they were not the evil player, we need to see this and we need to see this now. The EU is setting a stage where business moves out and then? An iPhone for $2999? The biggest iPhone is now A$2719, so it is not that much a stretch. 8 years of iterations got it from $299 to what it is now and Google? They are on a similar track, the hardware might not be iteration, but their software is not. Innovation software allowed people to make leaps forward and so far the other brands kept up as well, I wonder when that got investigated in the EU?

The case has been running a while, so there is no clear line to draw, but the media seemingly reports the final line and the history and context before it is forgotten, I wonder why?

Am I right?  Am I wrong? Am I correct? I leave it up to you to decide, but consider that I predicted the arms fallout and now we see, only 3 hours before ‘China’s biggest airshow to highlight military prowess’, others laughed about HarmonyOS and now it is here. And in all this not one government has shown any evidence regarding the Huawei accusations. I wonder when people wake up, realising that they are getting played by stakeholders who need to push forward the need need of corporations, American and seemingly European as well. All whilst those corporations have no patents, they have no innovations, merely marketed concepts, hyped hardware that draws short. How much more failures will push their agenda’s against actual innovators (Facebook, Google, Amazon and Huawei)? 

It might be a wrong point of view, I will admit that, but it is tainted what I have seen over almost 40 years in IT in all kind of fields.

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Stark contrast

There is an old ‘expression’, The people will rally against the injustice of children, yet for the most, only if it hurts THEIR children. It is a saying that most people ignore because there is a string of pain, the realisation that the need of ‘me’ overrules the need for all. And guess what, Apple joined those ranks a while ago. We see BBC News headlines (last year) like “Ricky Gervais slams Apple over Chinese factories” and we laugh, but the pain is a lot more real than you think. There is an ignored side and there Apple does not seem to give an ‘eff’ (as long as the revenue comes in. It is there advertisement section, the one that is ‘hidden’ in games. Games that give an advertisement and that is OK, but then they take you STRAIGHT to the installation page. Where did we sign up for that? And this is not some innocent ‘barbie game’ this is how pokie and gambling sites assault the weary and the vulnerable. They take the game and the problem to a whole new level. You see, the ad is not the real issue. The issue becomes when you want to close the window and the super-small ‘X’ that closes the window is in the top left corner, and if you miss it, the excuse will be ‘We assumed you wanted the program’, but the close icon is small enough to miss it way too often.

So not only is Apple setting a stage, they are doing this in the setting of “We do not want any issues in the schools where OUR children go, we do not care about the rest” it is a stage that is speculative, but consider the impact. How many children get exposed to that part? And they are not alone, there is more and more out there coming to all of us regarding a ‘game’ named coin master. Even if it has an ad with Joan Collins. In Change dot org (and a few other places) we see messages like “I have been playing coin master for about 8 months and saved up all my coins and spins and spent a fortune on the game then one day i open up my game and the 117billion coins i had and 22,000 spins are gone , i had been reset , apparently coin master are reseting accounts with high savings which is against their own rules because they cannot tell the difference between people who play honest and the cheaters”, now this is a setting of accusation that require data and evidence and I do not have any myself. But coin master is important as it is not only vying for your cash (which is fair enough). It is combining with the ‘sentiment and acceptance’ of pokies, but what we see is not a pokie, it is a game that looks like a pokie and there we see a problem. The makers were decently brilliant, but there is a new stage, “what looks like one” is not the same as one actually is and the makers are in the clear and there is a larger station where it is happening under the noses of Apple (and a few other places), but there the stage is not protective, because it is as I paraphrased “in the schoolyard where we see no Apple employees” so no one at apple seems to care. So when we take a look at some media that give us ‘Complaint Website Flooded By Angry Coin Master Players’ we think that there is a case for action, but that article is almost 2 years old, as such they are doing something really really right or Apple just does not give a hoot (or is that hooters) about their consumers? And the stage is rapidly getting larger. Deceptive conduct (like the gardenscape ads), several ads all showing something that the game does not have, or perhaps in some obscure mini game. And the people are getting less and less choice, because the in game advertisements are seemingly not policed. 

And Apple (Facebook and Google too) needs to start acting. 

And here is the rub, we might see the complaints, yet the game was downloaded in extent to 100,000,000 times, so their app will hold what Apple might see as a remarkable advertisement magnet, and there is the problem, when an app becomes too big too fail there is every chance that the three players will not act in fear of driving people to one of the other two channels, but in the mean time your children are just in danger, because if an app (or game) like ‘Happy Color’ can spout these two advertisements, what other apps will expose your children to the dangers of gambling? 

And consider the start contrast hat Forbes is trying to give us (at https://www.forbes.com/sites/kateoflahertyuk/2021/09/04/ios-15-apple-just-revealed-a-game-changing-new-iphone-privacy-feature/) a mere 3 weeks ago. There we saw “We already knew iOS 15 would come with multiple privacy features that will further hurt the data-hungry habits of Google and Facebook. But now, Apple has just revealed that iPhone users will finally get a choice whether to enable Apple’s own personalised ads on their devices” yet, how does that fare for the in-game advertisements? The Forbes article does not bare that out and I feel decently certain that Apple (Facebook and Google too) is not willing to put the foot down there. So in the end how much danger are your children in when they play a ‘free’ app? Consider that nothing is for free and a player like Coin Master makes on average $24,000,000 a month. I did not look into the revenue of Lightning Link, but that is clearly a pokie, so it is clear gambling. The problem there is that kids might not understand the difference. So you thought EA games was pushing a setting? I think parents have bigger problems and in this Apple (Facebook and Google too) have a much bigger problem protecting the vulnerable and that is something the media seemingly tends to shy away from a little too eagerly in my books. This whilst somewhere in February this year we saw ‘Apple slapped with class action suit over gambling apps’ where we also see “according to plaintiffs, users are unable to collect actual cash in the casino games, but they do have the ability to win and therefore acquire more playing time. This system — paying money for a chance to win more playing time — allegedly violates anti-gambling laws in the 25 states at issue in the case” and that is only the US setting, Apple et al could have stopped this by blocking that stage but it seems they were eager to get more cash, so even as some would voice “The people who play, are literally paying to kill time”, it is a point of view that is fair enough in some cases, but the advertisements seen are using the little tricks to get a few more vulnerable players into their fold and that is a larger station. If there was a much larger ‘X’ in the advertisement they might have been in the clear, but they did not and moreover they take you STRAIGHT to the app installation page whilst the sentiment to do so was not there. A stage of deception a few times over and there will be a larger invoice for all the players allowing for this. In a stage where political players all over the field are gunning for their coffers these players did something really stupid, they are making it easy to gun for them and when the politicians get to use the cards ‘gambling’, ‘vulnerable people’ and ‘easy exploit’ together (optionally in one sentence), places like Apple (et al) will be handed a fine that could end up being considerably larger than the $1,200,000,000 fine they faced in march. 

These players see it as mere parking fines. The fines are tax deductible, the 100,000,000 downloads seem to validate a speculative advertisement revenue of $10,000,000 a day in just ONE APP and that is the stage, if the case only takes 2 years, the players are looking at an optional $7,000,000,000 in advertisement revenue, the people do not stand a chance to get a fair shake here, so where can they go?

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A short sighted wire

I was taken by surprise today, the BBC gave me ‘EU rules to force USB-C chargers for all phones’, the article (at https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-58665809) gives us “Manufacturers will be forced to create a universal charging solution for phones and small electronic devices, under a new rule proposed by the European Commission (EC)” which is stupid on several levels. It remains a surprise on how we see the computation of IQ of a population being  AVERAGE(group), whilst the IQ of a collection of politicians seems to adhere to LOWEST(group). Now let’s be clear. I would love to see a stage where power supplies all adhere to the same settings, but the USB-C charger of my MacBook will not charge my Chromebook, my USB-Micro charger of my android phone actually does charge other devices and a generic charger will not work on my android phone, as such the entire setting of all using the same cable is a laughable stage. More important, generic power boards with USB points will not charge everything either (it would not charge my Chromebook), so where set the standard? Set the standard at what each battery has to accept? 

So when we see “EU politicians have been campaigning for a common standard for over a decade, with the Commission’s research estimating that disposed of and unused charging cables generate more than 11,000 tonnes of waste per year.” So how about a mobile phone that lasts well over 5 years? I reckon that this element will save a lot more waste space required. But under what conditions? So how about all chargers for anything battery operated like a wireless WiFi, photo camera’s, film camera’s, webcams, speakers (like Bose and JBL), bluetooth devices. The list goes on, they ALL have to adjust? How stupid is that train of thought? When any asian market decides to take a turn to the right, when they find a new innovative way, where will the EU be left? A setting that can be hammered straight out of gateway, set to ‘unused charging cables’, all whilst the charging cble is the one part that often needs replacing long before the charger is too broken to be used. And these charge cables are also used for consoles, printers, scanners and other devices. So who was the local yahoo that set for “All smartphones sold in the EU must have USB-C chargers”? Someone with a friend at Apple, or perhaps someone who hates non USB-C systems? Perhaps some yahoo who forgot his Android cable that still uses USB micro?

When we see the elements of that article, the numbers do not add up. Even Apple, the people who embraced USB-C give us: “Apple has warned such a move would harm innovation”. So when we see “In 2009, there were more than 30 different chargers, whereas now most models stick to three – the USB-C, Lightning and USB micro-B” we see a level of raw BS. You see my Apple USB-C charger will not charge my USB-C Chromebook, a simple test overseen in 10 second. Then there is “the Commission’s research estimating that disposed of and unused charging cables generate more than 11,000 tonnes of waste per year” I know that this is equally a setting of utter nonsense, because there is no division between unused and broken cables and they cannot, it is mere estimation work. The reason I know this is because I have three chargers that are still in my desk for backup. In case one of the other ones break, the cables are equally important. When at work I keep one cable there in case I forget to charge the night before. All reasons to have more than one cable. I have two additional cables for other reasons and some over time broke. All settings that are an issue, so when we are given that the cables changes are required for 

smartphones
tablets
cameras
headphones
portable speakers
handheld video game consoles

All whilst the console controllers are not part of that equation. This is an attack on the Asian market, it has nothing to do with landfill. That is how I personally see it and that is why I consider that compared to these politicians Homer Simpson is pretty much the Einstein of them all. Oh and then there is the stage that at times the same port is used in multiple ways, so what about portable speakers that cannot be connected to a laptop because the laptop does not have a USB-C port. Issue upon issue all whilst a group of people are now setting a technology limit? So consider one part not seen there (no blame to BBC) “The USB-C connector was developed by the USB Implementers Forum (USB-IF), the group of companies that has developed, certified, and shepherded the USB standard over the years”, so a filtering to less then 1200 companies? How is that not segregation and discrimination? And when we take that list of 1100-1200 companies, how is that drill down per nation? And when we take a close look at waste per nation we see “European plastics production almost reached 58 million tonnes” and we see an article on 11,000 tonnes? This adds up to 1% of 1% of an actual problem, I think the people in the EU needs to sack without any pay the people from that European Commission. To underline that part, consider that my Wifi Router and my Mobile phone use the same USB-Micro charger and when it is not charging it is disconnected, all whilst the Chromebook and the MacBook both need DIFFERENT USB-C charger, as such the line “encouraging consumers to re-use existing chargers when buying a new device” becomes equally debatable. 

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Taking and making what it gives

Yes, we seem to think that this is the stage we need to be in, and at times you are correct, that is what there is. It dawned on me that at times innovation, or innovation alike can drive creativity. In the past there was an option to get into movies required a fortune, so you either tinkered by the side of the road, or you were some rich kid, that was the reality. Now consider that this is no longer the case, the stage is set to two elements (three actually).

1. GoPro Hero 10 ($600)
2. Mac Airbook (up to $4500)
3. Software (up to $500)

So for $6000 (max) you could have all you need to become a cinematographer. The laptop idea is expensive, there are cheaper solutions, to under $6000 there is a stage where you can make all kinds of movies and there is no cost for film or development. As we were in lockdown, the mind wanted to travel, so I started to watch the walking tours, a lot of them in 4K and most of them made with older GoPro devices. You might laugh, but some of these walking tours equal decent TV and in some cases cinema trips. I saw Portofino, Cannes, Monaco, Vancouver, Montreal, Buenos Aires, London (several), Riyadh, Jeddah and a few things stood out. The movies were well above average, the streets in Canada are amazingly clean, Portofino was worth the watch for a few personal reasons and so on. I believe that we are one step away from a ‘small’ company like GoPro to put a massive dent in Hollywood and that is before you realise that we will be drowning in amazing movies, the stage is already there that amateur film makers can make ‘their’ version of the Blair Witch Project. Another version of Cloverfield and we can go on in all kinds of directions. I myself was entertaining an idea in another direction (no matter what), but I am an idea man, not a movie maker (not yet anyway). 

And even as GoPro is making headway into setting the dynamic movies to a new height. I predict that they will corner the market in several ways within the next 2-3 years. I believe that the information given here is incorrect “The number of GoPro devices shipped worldwide has been decreasing since its peak of 6.58 million units in 2015, to around 2.8 million units in 2020”, there is not a decline, mainly because some people STILL use the GoPro 4, a lot are still using the GoPro 8, so there is a market of well over 15,000,000 film makers and I believe that with the additions on the GoPro Hero 10 that group will increase (a lot). And when you consider that this can directly be spread via YouTube channels, for GoPro the sky is the limit. Whether the film maker will decide to rely on GoPro tools, on Adobe Premiere Pro, Final Cut Pro or iMovie, there are several solutions and as people tart to become more and more active there is a new market evolving. A market of services, critical evaluation and creation, all working in some form of symbiosis. And as the makers set out there options of short movies, I wonder when it will be a GoPro Hero user who in the near future will be the first to win a Academy Award for Best Short Film (Live Action) using a GoPro because the hardware is now definitely up for it, we now only need to wait for the creative soul to make that step (it will not be me), and I would not be surprised that thee will be more evolutions in this direction before the end of 2023, a stage that (as I personally see it) evolved and came to a much larger live during lockdowns and curfews. 

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As questions rise

The BBC gave us the rundown late yesterday (at https://www.bbc.com/news/business-58540936) where we are given ‘Apple rushes to block ‘zero-click’ iPhone spyware’. A setting that comes at times and this is not against Apple, yet the article left me with questions. I get that there is initial finger pointing, as such pointing to the best in the field makes perfect sense to me and it is done with “it had high confidence that the Israeli hacker-for-hire firm, NSO Group, was behind that attack”, I do admit that the term ‘hacker-for-hire’ will be one that requires more precise explaining. Bill Marczak from the University of Toronto’s Citizen which first highlighted the issue gives us “we previously found evidence of zero-click spyware, but “this is the first one where the exploit has been captured so we can find out how it works,”” and this got me thinking. 

Where is the timeline? With what version of iOS does it start? Version 14, version 14.5, version 13? So how long was this in play? It is not the fault of the BBC and it is the first issue.

We then get “the security issue was exploited to plant spyware on a Saudi activist’s iPhone”, so how many activists are monitored? When was the transgression detected? How was the transgression detected? At least two of these questions require investigation and the BBC did not go there. We can argue whether they were required to do so. 

So whilst we are lulled to sleep with “Security experts have said that although the discovery is significant, most users of Apple devices should not be overly concerned as such attacks are usually highly targeted” which could be an absolute truth, we see the setting that Apple is protected. So why was the weakness there in the first place? The answer might be extremely valid, no system is truly secure, we have seen that for a long time. Yet in the moments where I saw this article I phrased a few questions that I have not seen anywhere else (as far as I could tell). And of all the people who could be infected, we get the mention of ‘Saudi activist’? The article was set to certain measures and without proper and a clear explanation there is every chance that additional questions will be asked from the University of Toronto as well. This is not against them and I have nothing against Bill Marczak (I do not know anything about him), but the stage was set in a few measures and that makes for a worrisome setting. A BBC article absent of a few facts and the insertion of a few innuendo’s. All whilst there optionally might be questions from the NSO Group. A stage where we see a setting where (in my personal opinion) someone was standing of the axial of a seesaw to keep the almost in balance. And as the NSO Group, Saudi Arabia and Apple where alternating on the seesaw, the man in the middle offset the balance by just enough to make is wonder, to make us lay blame. Yet all that happened with several facts missing and the smallest mention of “continue to provide intelligence and law enforcement agencies around the world with life-saving technologies to fight terror and crime”.

We all need to do what we need to do, yet I wonder if the BBC (and Reuters) did enough here.

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When one and one remains one

Two things crossed my path, as perhaps a lot of you too. They are not related, but they gave me food for thought. The first are the floods all over NY city. I looked at a lot of YouTube videos and I agree, we have never seen this before, will we see more of that? Time will tell. Yes, it could be due to global warming, but it is not a given. We have tornado’s and we have storms and this one went towards New York. Now, I am not stating that it isn’t due to global warming, but to point the finger from the start is not a good idea. I do believe that global warming is part of the storm surge and as global warming continues there will be more storms. There is no denying that. One can lead to the other, but one is not the definite cause of the other. That setting is here too. So whilst those with a sub-level apartment, they now have a swimming pool. I am not making fun of them, that would be wrong, but it is important to consider that New York has never dealt with this before and it is now August. It will take months to dry, so we are in a setting with thousands of a basement apartments and when the frost sets in, these houses will become death traps. November and December will be close to unbearable and in January if the frost sets in these apartments will be a different setting. It is also a more important setting, if snowfall comes early this December, thousands of places to live will become close to unsurvivable and New York better get ready for that stage, it could kill a lot of people. Is it a given? No, it is not, but the floods are clearly visible, if the subway is flooded, how will these houses fare? And that is only the start, the water brought all kinds of mud and other health threats, so cleaning these places will be an almost titanic task. Then we get to the damaged electrical systems, and all this is before we realise that plumbing and  water will take a while to become decently reliable again. A stage we saw in part, but how much of these dangers did the people see?

The second is not related, but it had my attention. Reuters (at https://www.reuters.com/article/amazon-tv-usa/amazon-to-roll-out-its-own-tv-in-u-s-by-october-business-insider-idUSKBN2FZ00D) gives us ‘Amazon to roll out its own TV in U.S. by October’, this implies that there is another statin on US minds, Amazon will have more than Amazon Prime Video, they are now setting the stage to TV and there is no attack, there is no issue. Yet the stage of them offering  TV with a twist is not out of the question. It is a clever move from Amazon, they have the option to take advertising to a whole new level and it is THEIR TV channel, so the essential attacks on Amazon will not be as effective as the attacks that Apple and Google are facing. But is that what it is about? No, it is not merely the TV part, it is the shifting economy that Amazon gets to push for. This is not meant in a negative way, but consider that thousands will be dislodged, thousands will need a job, a home and Amazon who is out to hire 55,000 tech jobs and that news is a mere 22 hours old. People have relocated for a lot less and that gives Amazon more than a leg up, it gives them a furlong head start in 2-3 venues and in this setting of bad news they become a shining light and optionally a larger staged beneficial noise to a lot of people. The part that New York might not like is that there is a setting where (depending on Amazon choices) 20-30 thousand people vacate for sunnier shores and in light of what happened in the last few days, with the added workforce taking a step in an optional other direction. We will see a larger stage of the economy changing in New York, one New York never anticipated before. So we see the tech jobs, TV and a lot more and Amazon is at the heart of that. These events are not connected, yet the stage of a larger change becomes apparent, or perhaps I need to say ‘speculatively apparent’. because it is speculation from my side. A stage where Amazon gets to promote their jobs, their positions, their TV, their goods at base pries is an advantage that few ever have and thousands are looking for jobs and that advantage is likely to increase over time. I am merely looking at the pharmaceutical side, the retail side and the job side and there we see Amazon having an advantage thrice over. And as I see it, they are not doing anything wrong. They merely take a versatile set in a post covid era and they are decently ahead of the rest. 

So consider what I write, consider what you think and see where you can prosper, because someone who hires 55,000 tech jobs has a larger plan in place and that is not something you should ignore, especially when Amazon takes that setting on an international level. It gives them a larger advantage over several players who aren’t even close to doing what Amazon is claiming to start over the next 4 weeks.

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Maximising digital exploitation

Yes, that is what you all fear is it not? To get digitally exploited and would you believe it, governments and politicians are making it happen. The first one to do so is South Korea. The news (at https://www.reuters.com/article/us-southkorea-antitrust-tech/s-korea-parliament-committee-votes-to-curb-google-apple-commission-dominance-idUSKBN2FQ05V)  gives us ‘S.Korea parliament committee votes to curb Google, Apple commission dominance’ and here we see “a key step toward banning Google and Apple from forcibly charging software developers commissions on in-app purchases” and it is not just that, we also get “the amendment bans app store operators with dominant market positions from forcing payment systems on content providers and “inappropriately” delaying the review of, or deleting, mobile contents from app markets” As I personally see it, this is what organised crime has been waiting for and South Korea just made it happen. So as you ponder ‘or deleting, mobile contents from app markets’ consider that one infected app maker can now make claims rejecting deletion (or massively delaying it) and as such thousands of tablets and mobile phones will get infected and spreading the backdoor. There was a reason for the jumps that Apple and Google had made, in this we were decently safe. Now consider that we become the infection point because we were told that brand X is 25% cheaper, gives 50% more credit and is just as fast. That short sighted thinking will get you slammed, will get you hammered and could cost you your device. So as other sources give you “We do not expect any issues”, or “We are not aware of any issues at present” consider the carefully phrased denials and the consequences for your hardware. And whilst you remain in denial of this all being for consumer good. This all got started by some greed driven upstart that was making $5,100,000,000. So how much extra do you get? When you consider that one player has V-bucks (their currency) is at 1000 for £6.49/$7.99. When did they give you more for the same amount? They did made over 5 billion last year alone. So when we get to the quote by someone we care not for we see “Dominant app store operators with large platforms should by now look to profit from value-added services, not just taking a cut from apps sold on its store”, yes, so how stupid was that? Now the value added services like security, testing and storing must be paid for, as such the small players will soon stop existing, all to help out the multibillion app players. In the old setting all developers had a decent chance, that will now seize and as the damage to consumers start stacking, the larger failing will be seen in 2022, or as soon as you suddenly get a message that you became a DDOS agent. So whilst you get rid of all the games and utilities, it will be too late. You will need to factory reset your device hoping it will be enough (it might not be). Yes that was real clever thinking and when we regard “the rushed process hasn’t allowed for enough analysis of the negative impact of this legislation on Korean consumers and app developers” which is given to us by Wilson White, a policy director at Google. We will need to ascertain a few issues. In the first when this is pushed through we can no longer hold Apple or Google accountable when we get transgressed upon, we will get to drag these politicians into courts and in front of the camera and we can advertise just how stupid and shortsighted they were, it is the smallest reward for days and optionally weeks of our devices not being able to function because short sighted people thought they knew what they were doing. As I see it a ‘sorry’ statement will not be any defence and that is the larger setting, these politicians will openly ignore the damage done to the people, they will deny catering to organised crime and we are left with the damage. Yet they too will feel that impact hen EVERY developer will have to pay to be on the Appstore. When 10%-25% fall away, the larger players who were greed driven will merely shrug with a ‘so what’ and the rest will be looking for a job and that will have a few larger impact settings as well. The Appstore settings as they are for now will enable developers to get decently quality systems to develop. When that comes with the additional $750 annual bill that falls the developers way. Consider the impact when you consider that there are 23 million Apple developers and well over 6 million Android developers. When they get the additional bills it will push a whole lot of them out of that field, the impact will be seen and felt in almost all walks of life. As I personally see it there is every chance that 2022 will become the year of the digital exploiters and in that setting it will not be about Apple or Google, but I will leave you all to figure that part out and be sure to feel the pain of what happens when you go to any other app store to save a dollar or two. The impact will be seen and felt almost everywhere. 

So as we see that South Korea got there first, the US is right behind them. They are hiding behind the quote “a bipartisan group of senators introduced a bill that would rein in app stores of companies that they said exert too much market control, including Apple and Google”, so when the damage hits, it will hit hard and it will hit almost complete. Consider that I am wrong and consider these advertisement statements we see and how much deceptive advertising you have seen on your phone or tablet? And that part has been around for almost a year. If these politicians cannot even keep the advertisement section clean, how much use are they when you get infected? That is the setting none of them are willing to stay around for. 

That is the danger and it is not merely on a simple setting, when the app store can be ‘avoided’, we will get to see headlines like “Mobiles Hacked for 5th Time in 2 Years in Latest Breach; Nearly 150 Million Affected”. You think I am kidding? Last week Newsweek reported that something similar happened to T-Mobile with only 50,000,000 victims. So there if you are an American there is a 1 in 6 chance that you are one of them, so how often do you want to lose control of YOUR data?

That is the larger danger and that danger is currently rapidly increasing. 

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