Critical Section


faster horses

Sunday,  10/05/14  09:26 PM

Apple Watch - not a faster horseYesterday was a day to play - yay - and today was a day to work ... on various different things.  Many of them qualitatively different, bringing to mind a great quote from Henry Ford: "If I had asked my customers what they wanted they would have said a faster horse."  Of course Henry didn't do that, he went from Zero to One, and gave them cars, instead. 

The more I think about Apple Watch, the more I think ... this is them, doing something new, again.  Each time we didn't see it so clearly at first ... the Mac, iMac, OS X, iPod, iTunes, iPhone, App Store, iPad, but then we did, and then ... they were big zero to one moments.  And now we have Apple Pay, which could be a sleeper biggie, and Apple Watch, which isn't sleeping so much as still gestating.

the first Michelin ManThe secret history of the Michelin Man.  See, just when you were wondering why you even ever read my blog, I link to something like this and you remember :)

ESR is creating a new Unix calendaring API.  Yay.  As a would-be user, I can't wait.  The current hodgepodge is badly broken.  Let's hope we can migrate it to Windows for a cross-platform solution, too...

Nice design: how IOS 8 time lapse feature works.  This is a great example of making good assumptions to avoid a raft of user preferences.

Wow.  In 2013 Samsung paid Microsoft $1B in royalties ... for Google's Android.  That means Microsoft made more on Android than Skype, Windows Phone, and Xbox combined.  Wow.

mysterious Titan sea "feature"Cassini watches mysterious feature evolve in Titan sea.  "The [NASA team has suggested the feature could be surface waves, rising bubbles, floating solids, solids suspended just below the surface, or perhaps something more exotic."  Awesome!

Not quite Google Glass: a week with Epson's awkward smart glasses.  The criticisms of the functionality cut deeper than the ones about style.  Interesting that their augmented workplace features were the most compelling.  Someday they'll include visual search,and that will be even cooler :)

xkcd: scientistsHow fast could you visit every state?  Randall Munroe asks the important questions...  (BTW I'm a big xkcd fan and have downloaded What If?; I can't wait to read it!)

Did you know (and apropos): scientists seen as competent but not trusted by Americans.  Unfortunately this says more about "Americans" than scientists.

X-15 and Pete Knight, holders of fastest manned spacecraft record47 years ago, the fastest manned spacecraft ever.  Weird to think such a record would have stood for so long... shows that we're pushing the envelope on many fronts, but not all of them.

Interesting: Redbox to shut down on October 7th.  [Update: not Redbox itself, just their joint venture with Verizon.  Thanks, MikeLike Blockbuster before them, they've been Netflixed   They haven't quite been Netflixed...  yet.

Sim City turns 25!Happy 25th birthday to Sim City.  Wow.  Cannot believe it has been that long; quite possibly the coolest game of all time (well, along with Myst :)

So, the New York Times believe that Silicon Valley has a diversity problem.  Why?  Because "Most of their employees are white and Asian men."  So their solution is blatantly racist, like explicitly interviewing minority candidates and requiring quotas.  I suppose they just couldn't face the possibility that many tech companies are colorblind meritocracies, and the resulting gender and racial mix is the result.  (Oh and meanwhile, the Times editorial board are ... mostly white and Asian men.)

KLM's lost and found BeagleThis is excellent: Dutch airline KLM's cuddliest member of their lost and found service... a Beagle.

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