Archive for the 'ipod' Category

D-Construct 2007

D-Construct 2007

Friday saw me hop down to Brighton for the D-Construct User Expeience conference. The day got off to a bad start when I didn’t get my morning coffee until 10am. Then it got worst… Jared Spool was the first speaker. On he comes… loud… talking about MP3 players. He then goes on for 20 mins about the iPod. . . about how easy it is to use, about what a great experience it is. I look around at all the attendee’s and over 80% are typing what he’s saying on Apple Macs. Listening to him go through the numbers of how many iPods have been sold since 2001 is possible the dullest thing I think I’ve ever seen at a conference ever.

He then goes on to talk about Netflix vs Blockbusters DVD postal rental service. fails to mention or any UK version. He says two things towards the end that I bother to write down. 1. ‘You’ve got to know what you’re doing’ and 2. ‘Don’t underestimate the cultural differences’. I think he failed on both those points. After eating into the first coffee break time with a stupid magic trick I meet some of the other delegates outside for a quick chat. A girl from is equally livid. ‘that’ she says ‘was Conference spam’. I’m incline to agree. I’d never been to a Mac Keynote… until today, I’ve never wanted to heckle and a geek conference, until today. I meet Matt Jones who’s a little nicer, he says ‘that’s the presentation he gives to CEO of large multi-nationals’. Personally I think he’s totally mis-judged the audience.

Up next, is Peter Merholz who starts brightly looking at the early history of Kodak (which I knew all ready) but then throws up a slide about products being ‘cool’ and my blood chills. And sure enough he’s off talking about the iPod. He then talks about Tivo, another product/service which we’re all familiar with and yet isn’t available in the UK. My brain switches off till lunch.

Leisa Reichelt takes the stage and talks about hwo to organise projects, it’s all the standard things ‘small groups’, ‘quick iterations’ ‘washing machines are good’, etc. Only as well all know projects just don’t happen like that, do they BBC iPlayer folks? Anyway, I quick like her hand-drawn post-it note slides.

A swift pint and a sandwich at the Pub next door and I’m expecting much better stuff from the afternoon. Up comes Cameron Moll, interaction design from the LDS Church (Mormon) in Salt Lake City – where’s this going I wonder? Alas he also mentions the iPod, but at least finds time to look at a Dyson advert as another example of ‘good design’.

It’s not until after 3pm that anyone British takes the stage. George and Denise do a nice relaxed sofa chat about the early histories of B3ta and Flickr. Denise has a nice phrase of turn ‘we did what’s now called viral marketing but back then was just called fucking about’. Neither of them mention the iPod.

Quick break and I’m expecting great things from ex-beebers Matt Webb, up next, and Tom Coats. Matt runs through the A-Z of the experience stack, though I’ve seen his ‘ windows 3.1 buttons / antelope’s belly’ story back in 2005 when I was at the BBC. But he’s delivering good ideas statements and observations in quick and relevant matter.

Tom Coats takes the stage, and declares his talk to be 100% iPod free, and is his usual animated self, his main thesis is ‘you’re product is not your website. It’s everywhere it touches the network’. Which is true.

Then it’s to pub, where I’m in the food queue next to one of the organisers who asks me what I thought of it.

Far too much focus on the iPod as the only example of good design which is too lazy, there’s like a billion others, the wheel, the brick, the bic biro, and I say this as a ipod and MBP user. Difference in style: the American’s gave us preeesentations the Brits either chatted or gave us a lecture. By that I mean that I found the American’s to slow and lacking substance, that room was full of the UK’s Alpha geeks, folks who can absorb information at quite a high bit rate. I wanted zipped-up concentrated information I’ll still be thinking about days later, that’s what conferences are, some of the speakers were operating on 56k. Mid way through Jared’s talk I wanted to shout out ‘please tell me something I don’t know!’. And it’s not like I’m a tech conference whore too, I don’t eTech or Future of Web App’s, I maybe take in a couple a year.

Finally he asked me if ‘had I paid for it myself (£100) would I be disappointed?’ And I’m afraid I answered ‘yes, slightly’. Still, rather that just moan about it on here, I said I’d be delighted to feed into next years conference. We shall see.

Note: I rather liked Brighton, 50 mins to Victoria… living by the sea. tempting.


iPod / BBC gossip and gadgets

BBC leaks info about the new iPod – Apple, launching a new video, here at the Beeb? and this, and more photoshopped stuff here… To good to be true…?!

There’s more rumours about a pink Madonna version like the U2 one.. Personally I’d like to see a Ronnie Barker version, a black nano pre loaded with all the classic video pieces and two pairs of gold glasses etched on the back… Actually I think comedy, particularly standup, would work rather well on an iPod, unlike Citizen Kane or Starwars. Close up shots of heads, the odd wide shot of the audience, after all most of the Oomph in standup comes through what’s said…

That said this is nice too. IPOD-Photo Stereoscope.

Grafitti at the bus stop

“Fuckin iPods” – Grafitti at the bus stop opposite the College Arms pub on Forest Road, Walthamstow – 19 June, 2004 – from Martin

heh heh heh. . .

UK Military Bans iPods – Then covers it up!

UK military denies ban on iPods

Apple must love publicity like this… If you read the article what they’ve actually looked at banning are all forms of removable storage, but the headline ‘MOD bans USB Flash fobs’ would just be too werid. ‘sides, ‘iPods = future tech’ in the popular press right now right?

But what about this: “With USB devices, if you plug it straight into the computer you can bypass passwords and get right on the system,” RAF Wing Commander Peter D’Ardenne told Reuters. “That’s why we had to plug that gap.”

How unsecure is that!!! Tsk, I remember when hacking into Govenment systems required playing Noughts and Crosses with a mainframe!

And for the true geek, here’s a in depth look at the actual computer Broderick used IMSAI home. Changing your grades by computer was the future! As was making long distance phonecalls using only a can ring pull…

If He’s So Smart…

Fast Company | If He’s So Smart…Steve Jobs, Apple, and the Limits of Innovation
Thoughtful essay about ‘The Leader’ and Apple. . . and it makes difficult reading. In essence it’s drawing comparisons between the days when Apple launched the Mac and lost it all to the PC and the iPod. It also goes on to explain that apple relies to much on innovation.

Given that other companies are working on low budget music devices, is the iPod going to go the way of it’s great great grand-daddy and loose market share to cheap clones? Maybe. God it’s all so poignant though. It’s like the iPod is the new mac and iTunes Music Store the new GUI OS. . . We’ve even got Apples first ad in the Superbowl for 20 Years coming up!

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These are my personal views and not those of Channel 4 or the BBC
October 2019
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