Jared Lives

Jared - Butcherer Of SongsI didn’t even realize that this is still around. Back in the mid 90’s Jared was iconic for Mac users, distributed through the crazy folks at Freeverse. Apparently they kept it going for a decade. There’s a Mac OS X version, a Dashboard widget, and even a new iPhone Application.

That brought back some memories. The iPhone’s CPU even underclocked to 412Mhz is way faster than the PPC 603e @ 75MHz I used when I first damaged my ear drums listening to Jared. And that was a full desktop.

To see something this silly last so long is funny itself. I hope Jared has a job that’s not in the music industry. I wonder if he served as insporation for William Hung?

Bonus: You can find the lyrics, english translation, and a brief history of the song Luna de Xelajú on wikipedia!

Me.com DNS Queries

I decided to take another look at me.com, the eve before we all expect a launch at WWDC2008. It’s still using marksmonitor.com for DNS.

TTL

The TTL is still set to 28800 (8 hours). I think this will drop before 2:00 AM PST (5:00 AM EST) if they are planning to offer email service to users so that it can propegate. Also note last update was June 4 2008.

me.com.                 85673   IN      SOA     ns1.markmonitor.com. eddingsk.apple.com. 2008060411 28800 7200 604800 86400

Akamaized

The www CNAME record is already pointing to Akamai (which Apple uses quite a bit). There is currently no A record for me.com (The me.com A record can’t point to Akamai since their service is delivered via a CNAME).

www.me.com.             591     IN      CNAME   www.me.com.edgesuite.net.
www.me.com.edgesuite.net. 18591 IN      CNAME   a1917.g.akamai.net.
a1917.g.akamai.net.     20      IN      A       8.15.32.42
a1917.g.akamai.net.     20      IN      A       8.15.32.9

No mx records yet

There’s still no mx records yet. This is interesting since it’s already pointing at Akamai’s EdgeSuite, yet it doesn’t have mx records. Why only halfway setup DNS?

mobileme.com

There is no DNS info to be found for mobileme.com. This makes me think that Apple may not intend to launch this product tomorrow. Perhaps they just don’t want it to land in the hands of squatters? Backup domain (in case they couldn’t have me.com)?

mac.com

The TTL for mac.com is set to 1880 (30 minutes). That was originally very surprising until I noticed the serial was May 16 2008. I suspect Apple always keeps it low so that they can make changes on the fly (given their past email problems, makes sense).

mac.com.                4106    IN      SOA     nserver.apple.com. hostmaster.apple.com. 2008051601 1800 600 1209600 7200

Conclusions

There’s nothing very damning here. If anything I’d conclude mobileme.com is possibly/likely not a product, just trying to keep the squatters at bay. I think more may be revealed early tomorrow morning as Apple starts to prep for launch. Unless the security team at Apple decides to wait until post-announcement to start up the site. I guess we’ll see soon enough.

WWDC 2008 Predictions

And the a tradition continues. Here’s my predictions for WWDC 2008. Steve Jobs will announce the following:

iPhone 3G

Well duh. At this point if it’s not at least announced, Apple’s stock is going to tank. There’s a ton of stuff to back this up including AT&T telling employees not to take vacation in the near future. And mystery shipments of presumed iPhones. I’ve got a good idea what the technical specs will likely be.

AT&T Subsidy

AT&T will likely subsidy the new iPhone when purchased with a 2 year contract to help lower the price and encourage more people to buy it. This is looking even more likely as the economy declines and potential buyers may now be more hesitant.

.mac to become me.com and mobileme.com

.mac will finally die and be replaced with me.com and mobileme.com. I suspect mobileme.com will be free for iPhone users. me.com may be paid if Apple does it in-house, or free if they contract the functionality out to someone like Google (which is likely).

Mac OS X 10.6 Insights

I don’t think we’ll see it until at least late 2009, more likely early 2010, and I doubt Steve will suggest any faster of a timeline. Remember after 10.3 the plan was slower OS releases. I suspect it will stay that way. I don’t think Apple likes the idea of two Mac OS X branches, the mobile and desktop one. I suspect 10.6 will be an effort to “unify” the platform at least from a marketing perspective. Starting from WWDC 2008 onwards I suspect a “Mac OS X powered phone” will be more common branding. Again Apple’s goal is to sell computers. Using the iPhone as a method to sell the desktop experience is pretty obvious. But what does that mean for the OS? Likely a lot of focus on things like Sync, the future of tech (64bit, multi-core, intel) and blurring the distinction between phone and computer. I don’t think we’ll see much more than a little eye candy and some buzz words considering we’re not far from Leopards release. Just enough to get the press talking about it.

New Desktops / Laptops

I don’t think Apple plans any desktop/laptop announcements just yet, I suspect they will hold off until August as tradition. At that point pretty much all of Apple’s computer lines are due for a major overhaul. I suspect the MacBook Pro may be the first to experience a major design change. Apple desperately needs a mid-range tower to build more market share as the Mac mini is under powered and the Mac Pro is very expensive. If anything is announced I suspect it will be just that.

Special Guests

No idea who the special guests will be. If the new iPhone is based on Atom, I suspect an Intel Exec. Other than that, really don’t know. Likely an iPhone developer or two will make an appearance during the iPhone Apps part. No clue on musical guest.

So there you have it. We’ll see Monday what I got right.

.mac To Become Me.com And MobileMe.com

A few days ago, various websites noted a change in the recently released Mac OS X 10.5.3 that Apple replaced hard coded references of .mac with a variable, as if they plan to change the name at some point in the near future (WWDC 2008 is just around the corner).

Now it appears Apple owns me.com and mobileme.com. The SOA records confirm me.com, though not mobileme.com is owned by Apple. The timing and name strongly suggest the same owner. MarkMonitor.com manages domains for most of the large tech companies including Apple, so that’s to be expected. Remember Apple owned iPhone.org for ages before actually launching the iPhone, so it’s not impossible that this is just a strategic purchase and has nothing to do with a WWDC 2008 announcement.

;; QUESTION SECTION:
;me.com.                                IN      SOA

;; ANSWER SECTION:
me.com.                 77583   IN      SOA     ns1.markmonitor.com. eddingsk.apple.com. 2008052918 28800 7200 604800 86400

;; Query time: 16 msec
;; SERVER: 68.87.64.146#53(68.87.64.146)
;; WHEN: Sun Jun  1 22:17:29 2008
;; MSG SIZE  rcvd: 91

Considering the tight relationship between Google and Apple thanks at least in part to a certain someone, one must wonder if .mac will be replaced by a Google powered service. Google already offers pretty much the entire product line. It might make sense for Apple to just outsource the .mac operation to Google. Apple initially planned for .mac to be partially free (and it was initially), but costs forced it to be a paid only service. Letting Google power it, would undoubtedly be cheaper since Google has an ability to scale is unrivaled.

I’ve got to put together a better list of predictions before WWDC 2008 (as tradition requires). But this is likely one of them.

FUSE For Windows

Reason number 1,000,001 to use a Mac for development purposes. MacFUSE rocks (thanks Google). sshfs and ftpfs (when no ssh) are life savers. Yes in Linux there’s the original FUSE which is just dynamite. I just don’t understand how in 2008 there’s no port for Windows. It’s so insanely useful and practical.

IDE’s with FTP browsers built in pretty much suck, or their FTP implementation is just too buggy.

Surprisingly the Mac has FUSE, and the one IDE that I like Coda also has an awesome FTP/SFTP implementation. Avery rare coincidence. To my surprise, several weeks ago I found out it even supports SSH keys. The trick is to use SFTP and to enter your keys password in Coda when setting up the Site. Coda will then connect and use the ssh key. Awesome.

Windows Ad On A Mac

I see these every once in a while. Advertisers occasionally think it’s clever to make their ad mimic the OS interface in hopes that novice users get confused and click on it. I’m sure this is (sadly) pretty successful despite being rather deceptive. It becomes comical when these ads show up on a Mac since it looks so out of place as shown in this image.

Stupid Windows Ad

You can’t really expect a Mac user to fall for this. It looks pretty strange. The best part is how for Operating System, it says “unknown”.

if (navigator.appVersion.indexOf("Win")!=-1){
    showAd();
} else {
   // Don’t even waste your time.
}

LG CU500

LG CU500Tonight I replaced my 2+ year old LG vx6000 with a LG CU500 [Amazon]. Family plan upgrade time.

I haven’t had too much time to play with it. Perhaps later I’ll take a few test photo’s outside in daylight (if it’s not raining) and see how they look, and perhaps upload them.

I first setup bluetooth between my Mac and my phone, just paired them up. Took about 10 seconds. Then tried to do the same with my Thinkpad. Took about 2 minutes, thanks to slightly more confusing software (never did either). Next task was to transfer a picture from the phone to the PC. After about 20 minutes I had no success on my Thinkpad, kept being told “Sending Cancelled” by the phone. Went over to the Mac, and it took no more than 15 seconds.

Everything is easier on a Mac.

I haven’t had to much time to play with it, but here are some initial impressions:

  • WOW!!!
  • Call quality seems very clear. Good indoor reception.
  • Seems like stronger vibrate mode than the vx6000, or maybe mine just got tired after so long.
  • 1.3 MP camera is surprisingly good… will need to purchase a memory card (MicroSD) tomorrow.
  • Recording video’s is super awesome… again, will need that memory card.
  • Bluetooth on Mac: sweet. Bluetooth on Thinkpad: ugh (see above).
  • Mp3 player looks pretty solid, again need memory card, though this is a feature I’m not really that interested in.
  • Menu’s very well laid out, organized, clear.
  • Build quality seems exceptionally good. I’ve held a couple of them now, and all are rock solid.
  • Comes with travel charger, rather than one with a stand… prefer the stand on my desk, no option to buy that. Hooking up the cable is more cumbersome than slipping it on the stand.
  • Apparently supports 3GPP, so a movie could be saved to the memory card… note: buy memory card.
  • No voice dialing (though is that really so critical?)
  • Buttons on the side are pretty slim and take some getting used to… not good for gorilla’s who use cell phones.
  • Bright vibrant screen, great looking case, again, great build quality.
  • Photo’s have EXIF data! Unlike the vx6000, which was a drag.

Apple is still using 64-bit Processors

Several months ago I asked if Apple would continue to use widely advertised 64-bit processors after moving to Intel. Apple spent a lot of time/money telling people 64-bit was the future, and the G5 was perfect.

Even upon release of the first Intel Mac’s, it wasn’t clear if they were 64-bit or 32-bit. Supposedly they are 64-bit, but not very clear if they could ever run in 64-bit.

Regardless, very interesting.

The end of Internet Explorer 5 for Mac

Microsoft Says:

In June 2003, the Microsoft Macintosh Business Unit announced that Internet Explorer for Mac would undergo no further development, and support would cease in 2005. In accordance with published support lifecycle policies, Microsoft will end support for Internet Explorer for Mac on December 31st, 2005, and will provide no further security or performance updates.

Additionally, as of January 31st, 2006, Internet Explorer for the Mac will no longer be available for download from Mactopia. It is recommended that Macintosh users migrate to more recent web browsing technologies such as Apple’s Safari.

We all knew that was coming, they haven’t updated the thing in ages… I wonder why they didn’t mention Firefox or Camino (which is sometimes unfortunately forgotten with all the Firefox marketing). It seems a lot of Mac users still use IE on the Mac, despite it’s age. Simply because they think it’s the same as IE for windows (when in fact they don’t share any more than the name). Hopefully they will begin to migrate to something more modern. IE5/Mac had some advanced rendering for the time, but by today’s standards, it doesn’t do much.

[Via Slashdot]