TV commercials drive me nuts! By David Hague TV commercials drive me nuts! Especially those shown in the country, where it is assumed every single person who is watching is a "down-on-the-farm-country-boy" (or lassie). As such, many ads have the poor farmer doing something stupid (using string to tie a gate as against the "new gate locker magico!", or is buying new boots every other day - "Step by step, brick by brick, you and your boots built this country". ...Read More »
How Much Time Does Apple Have? By Dave Nagel Set sentimentality aside. Set aside the pride and the unfounded fears and all of the little irrelevancies I've seen people worrying over for the last five days about Apple switching to Intel. Focus, instead, on the big one: Will there be a Mac platform in two years? The answer to that will depend on whether Apple sticks to the plan announced at WWDC. If it does, then by this time in 2007, you will be doing your computing on a Windows box. ...Read More »
State of the Art: OS X for Designers By Dave Nagel If you're anything like me, you were out early Saturday morning?despite the throbbing pain in your head and the cottony taste in your mouth?rushing to the nearest computer retailer to pick up the latest release of Mac OS X, version 10.1. I know that not all of you are Mac psychofanatics and that a pretty decent-sized chunk of you don't even use a Mac at all. Nevertheless, Mac users do make up significantly more than half of the the total users in this particular creative space, so the question of switching is a relevant one. ...Read More »
State of the Art: Flash Is Back By Dave Nagel Not too long ago, I went on a bit of a tirade against Microsoft for failing to deliver the Flash plugin with the basic installation of Internet Explorer for Windows. After all, if it could happen on the Windows platform, the same fate couldn't be far off for the Mac platform either. But now (as of last week) Microsoft and Macromedia say Flash Player 5 will be distributed with the Microsoft Windows XP operating system, which is scheduled for worldwide availability Oct. 25. ...Read More »
Guest Opinion : The SGI We Really Need By Paulo de Andrade SGI is one of my favorite companies. Their computers have fueled the entertainment industry for years, and they have played a major role in the development of the computer graphics industry that we have today. Unfortunately, SGI's presence at Siggraph 2001 was, to put it mildly, "interesting." They were showing their brand new O2+ workstation, a powerhouse that would have made a lot of people drool a decade ago. At the time, this 350 MHz RM7000ATM processor-based workstation with 256 MB SDRAM, great graphics and a starting price of "only" $7,495 would have prompted people to sell their cars, mortgage their homes and even divorce their spouses just to get one. ...Read More »
Back in Black By Dave Nagel Less than a year ago, Corel Corp. seemed on the verge of ruin. Its profits were non-existent; it had just splurged on the acquisition of a number of creative products from the company formerly known as Metacreations; and its directors had released a statement saying that the company would be out of money unless it could merge with Inprise/Borland, another software company. The merger never happened. ...Read More »
State of the Art: Is Streaming Dead? By Dave Nagel I lie to you not. I went out to the Streaming Media West convention in Long Beach last week (against my better judgement, but I'll get to that in a moment). This is one of those shows where practically the only companies in attendance are there to beg for venture capital. You know the kind. (I went on at length about this around last Internet World. Streaming Media West is the same thing.) So, anyway, after I get done at this show, what do you suppose I find on my windshield when I reach the parking lot? ...Read More »
Talkin' Smack: Why Hast Thou Forsaken Me? By Dave Nagel Most of you know me as a good man. Some of you might even refer to me as a holy man. Perhaps you're right. However, recent evidence would tend to indicate that I may have fallen out of favor momentarily, a direct result of comments made in last week's column. Here's what happened. ...Read More »
Talkin' Smack: The God OS By Dave Nagel Is there a God? It's a question that might seem a bit out of place in this oft-jovial, sometimes sardonic editorial page, and I'm certainly not intending this to be in any way blasphemous by asking it here. After all, I'm as opposed to drowning in a lake of fire forever as the next guy. Nevertheless, the question is a relevant one for these pages, and, at the risk of exposing my own hubris, I intend to explain this relevance and answer the question in 1,500 words or fewer. ...Read More »
Prodigal Mac: Stranger in a Strange Land By Kevin Schmitt Since there are only a smattering of Apple-branded stores strewn across this great land of ours, I imagine that a good many of you out there have not had the opportunity to actually set foot inside of one. Oh, I'm sure you've seen pictures or heard stories, some of which have grown to mythic proportions. "Steve Jobs personally mans the cash register at every store!" "They have 400,000 software titles just for the Mac there!" "I heard that the employees can smell the rank stench of Windows on you, so be careful!" "My God, it's full of stars!" ...Read More »
Prodigal Mac: Excuse Me While I Pull My Hair out By Kevin Schmitt For those Prodigal Mac readers that go WAAAYY back with me to the column's humble beginnings, which was all of about four weeks ago, you've probably noticed my fondness for analogy. I wouldn't dare disappoint both of you by skimping on this installment, so let me take you back to an experience you've probably had (or may currently be having) in some form or another. ...Read More »
Talkin' Smack: Flash Is Back By Dave Nagel Not too long ago, I went on a bit of a tirade against Microsoft for failing to deliver the Flash plugin with the basic installation of Internet Explorer for Windows. After all, if it could happen on the Windows platform, the same fate couldn't be far off for the Mac platform either. But now (as of last week) Microsoft and Macromedia say Flash Player 5 will be distributed with the Microsoft Windows XP operating system, which is scheduled for worldwide availability Oct. 25. ...Read More »
Talkin' Smack: Who Educates the Educators? By Dave Nagel There are few things that affect your life as powerfully as your first child heading off to her first day of kindergarten. It's a time for reflecting upon one's own mortality, of envisioning one's child for the first time as a self-sufficient entity and of pondering the future in a completely new light. In short, it's a life-changing event. ...Read More »
Prodigal Mac: Find Balance, Grasshopper By Kevin Schmitt When I was little (and, admittedly, even today), I always looked forward to New Shoe Day!, a day so great, it must be capitalized and end with an exclamation point, even in the middle of a sentence. Picking out just the right shoe; the feel of the Brannock device against your sock-clad foot (yes, that metal thing they use to measure your shoe size does have a name); the agony of those rare times when they didn't have the right size; the ecstasy as you wore your spankin' new shoes out of the store, old ones already forgotten in the box under your mom's arm. There was nothing in the world like New Shoe Day! ...Read More »
Prodigal Mac: The One Where He Admits His Mac Envy By Kevin Schmitt One night recently, as I sat motionless and glassy-eyed on my couch, I came across one of the older episodes of Friends. It was the one where Ross was trying to decide which girl would be better suited for him: his current girlfriend, Julie, or his dream woman, Rachel. So he made a list of what was wrong with each woman in an effort to help him choose. Long story short, he picked Rachel, she found the list, read it, got mad at what he thought was wrong with her, hijinks ensued, roll credits. As I watched this episode for what seemed like the ten gazillionth time, it dawned on me that I, too, was approaching a crisis not unlike that of my television friend Ross. ...Read More »
Talkin' Smack: At It Again By Dave Nagel In some ways, it's reassuring to know that some things don't change. Even if it's a lame thing. Take Microsoft, for example. ...Read More »
Talkin' Smack: More Fun in the 3D World By Dave Nagel Before we get to the topic of this week's column?to wit, the SIGGRAPH convention?I'd like to revisit the topic of last week's?to wit, my birthday. You might recall that I had demanded of you, my beloved readers, some presents this year. Of course, not a single one of you sent me anything of any monetary value. I chalk this failure up to two factors?the lousy economy and the fact that I forgot to supply you with a shipping address. ...Read More »
Talkin' Smack: 20 Years of Innovation By Dave Nagel As most of you are aware, this week is my birthday. Last year at this time I published a wish list of my favorite technologies in the hopes that you would send some of these things along in gratitude for the fine service that all of you agree I provide to the industry. I don't mean to toot my own, you know, horn or anything; I just like getting free stuff. ...Read More »
Talkin' Smack: The Broadband Fiasco By Dave Nagel Some time ago I started a rant about ISPs and, in particular, my cable modem service. The argument went something like this: With all the commerce and information at stake on the Internet and with such limited choices as to how we access the Internet at high speeds, it seems almost a crime that those few companies that control access should take such a cavalier approach to service and support. I used my former cable modem service provider as an example of the sorry state of high-speed access. ...Read More »
Talkin' Smack: The Big Conspiracy By Dave Nagel The topic of last week's Talkin' Smack seemed to arouse the full range of emotions in our readers, from "Dave, you're an idiot" to "Dave, your mom is an idiot for not committing infanticide when you were born." A few of you were a bit more level-headed about the whole thing, offering some practical suggestions for seeking help for my mental problems, while others offered some not so practical suggestions for where I could stuff my obviously impaired brain. ...Read More »
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