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Articles: 2009 July

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Wednesday, 2009 July 29 - 5:35 pm
Here's a good one. Apple Hints at OSX on PCs. The logic behind this is that Apple is implicitly sanctioning a hack that would allow Mac OS X to run on Dell Mini netbook computers.

But what really happened is that someone posted a link to a hackintosh utility (a bootloader that would allow Mac OS X to boot on a Dell Mini) on some Dell forum website. Dell didn't take action against this post, and Apple didn't take action against Dell for not taking action. Somehow, inaction over inaction over unsanctioned user activity has become Apple officially "hinting" at something that makes no business sense whatsoever. Come on.
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Posted by Ken in: techwatch

Circular Reasoning
Wednesday, 2009 July 29 - 5:27 pm
There's an increasing problem in the Interwebs these days. It goes something like this.
  • A blogger or small-time web site posts an unsubstantiated rumor or speculation about something (like, say, an Apple "iTablet").
  • A semi-mainstream media outlet, like CNet's, picks up on the rumor, but makes the rumor sound like fact by putting a headline on it like "Apple ready to release iTablet this fall".
  • Executives from companies unrelated to the rumor (like record company execs) read these reports and speculate about the rumored product.
  • Mainstream media outlets publish these quotes as evidence that the rumored product is actually coming to market.
  • Bloggers quote the mainstream media article and now reference the rumor as certainty.

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Posted by Ken in: bloggerstechwatch

Five Lessons: Macroeconomics
Thursday, 2009 July 23 - 10:48 pm
Today's lesson: Five Lessons in Macroeconomics. Or, Five Things Conservatives Get Wrong About the Economy. This one is a little political, so sorry. Also, I'm just an armchair economist, so while I've put a fair amount of thought into these arguments, I'm not going to claim enough expertise to be 100% sure I'm right.

Enough disclaimers. On with the smackdown.

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Posted by Ken in: interestingpolitics

Paula Abdul gone from Idol?
Tuesday, 2009 July 21 - 9:59 am
Ooh, an off-season Idol post. Sorry, non-Idol fans.

Paula Abdul hasn't yet renewed her contract with "American Idol" for next year, leading to speculation that she might be gone from the show. Paula fans have responded with a Twitter and email campaign to keep her on the show.

I had a suspicion that Kara DioGuardi was brought in as a potential replacement for Paula. For me, Paula doesn't add a lot of value as a judge; it's not useful to the contestants if all your comments are always positive. Also, she seemed drunk most of the time. However, I'm not sure the Kara experiment is working out all that well, either. I think she and Simon genuinely dislike each other.

For this year, anyway, I suspect Paula will be back. This is all probably just an attempt by Paula's agents to get a fatter contract, what with Ryan Seacrest just signing a $15 million deal.
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Posted by Ken in: television

Five Lessons: Hard-to-Explain Rules in Sports
Sunday, 2009 July 19 - 11:27 am
This is a new feature here on Periodically, I'm going to start posting five (hopefully informative) tidbits on a particular topic. We'll see if this feature lasts longer than my earlier "Learn Something Every Day" feature that fizzled after a few days. If there are particular topics you'd like me to cover, let me know.

Today's topic: Five Hard-to-Explain Rules in Sports. The assumption here is that you're a casual sports spectator who knows the basics about a sport, but then some obscure rule comes into play that leaves you wondering what happened.

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Posted by Ken in: interestingsports

Monday, 2009 July 13 - 10:48 pm
What do you call the new wife of your brother-in-law? Is there some special term for that, or is she still just your sister-in-law?

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Posted by Ken in: life

Japan Photos
Sunday, 2009 July 5 - 3:04 pm
A few photos from the trip, after the jump. I'll have more up on Facebook later.

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Posted by Ken in: life

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