October 20th: What’s Going Down

by Chris Seibold Oct 19, 2010

Sharks, so the story goes, can smell a single drop of blood a hundred miles away. Being the unstoppable predators they are, once a hint of blood is in the water sharks will swim for miles around and join in something called a "feeding frenzy."

A lot of that narrative is probably apocryphal, sharks swimming a hundred miles for a drop of blood seems like a bit of a stretch, but the notion of a feeding frenzy is well documented and found in more than one species.

As self-aware, rational human beings, a feeding frenzy seems somewhat ridiculous. You don't see 300 people jumping over each other in a cornfield just to get their hands on the next juicy ear. But can we fully dismiss the notion? On Tuesday Apple announced a press event called Back to the Mac with a lion prominently featured. That's a drop of blood in the Apple world and, thanks to the internet, that one drop of tech blood will ignite a feeding frenzy of speculation around the world.

Don't be left out! Let's get to speculating. And making boring predictions isn't any fun so let's really speculate and come up with impossibly unlikely things.

1) iOS is dead. Everyone knows Apple only cares about the Mac, the invite didn't even mention iOS. Looks like that Windows 7 phone was just a little too much. Sorry iPhone owners.

2) Look closely at the invitation (mine was lost in the mail) and you'll note it looks like a door opening with a lion behind it. Some have interpreted this to mean 3-D is coming to the Mac. No way. Movie studios might be trying to push 3-D on us at the movie theatre, but Apple doesn't embrace iffy technology.

Clearly, Apple is introducing a brand new game: iColiseum. The way iColiseum works is old school. An iPad is placed in the middle of the arena. One lucky hopeful iPad owner is at the other end. A bell sounds, the would be iPad owner races for the device. The lions are then released and nature takes its course. Talking about making the old new again! You have to be impressed by Apple's foresight.

3) A processor switch. You know Apple has started designing chips in house, chips that run the iPhone and iPad. So it is a natural to think that Apple will be switching to that architecture. Wrong. Without Steve Jobs breathing down their collective necks the engineers at IBM were able to make great progress on the G5. All Macs will now be powered by G6 chips. Yes, you'll have to re purchase all your hardware.

4) Of course you're getting a new version of OS X, you'll need it to run the G6 chip. But it isn't just compatibility, you're getting new features. Use iChat with FaceTime users? You bet! Millions will have the capability, but not the inclination, to chat face to face. There's much more.

iTunes Genius will be updated. Currently the Genius function only suggests purchases. With the next version of OS X Genius goes takes the next step and purchases songs, movies, whatever  for you. Think of the time you'll save.

The killer feature of the new OS is that all applications will be bought through the Mac app store (for security reasons). Consumer level apps will cost 99 cents. Premium apps (Adobe Photoshop, Final Cut Pro) will still be expensive and retail for $1.99.

5) The new chips mean Apple has a lot of old chips laying around. You know the number one cause of suckiness on Macs? Flash. Every new Mac will feature a flip out screen to present all the flash content you happen across while browsing. The actual Flash code will run on separate processor inside your Mac. When Flash crashes on a new Mac it won't take Safari with it, instead the secondary display will say: "We told you so."

That's what you can expect out of next week's presser. Oh, you're wondering about "one more thing?" Here's what Steve has up his sleeve: Apple Store Offshore Casino. Yes, Apple is getting into gaming heavily. Being able to gamble directly from your Mac or iDevice will reap untold profits for Apple. Sure, the odds will be a little suckier than the ones you find in Vegas but the screens won't be nearly as garish as the carpets in Sin City.

All those seem like pretty solid bets so you can skip the coverage on the 20th and work on prettying up your house for Halloween instead.


  • Prediction: 
    MacBook Air is replaced by smaller laptop with 9 inch screen running expanded iOS with the horsepower to run Aperture Lite. (slightly stripped version of Aperture 3)
    FW 800, mini DVI and built-in SDHC reader.
    WiFi + G3
    Targeted at the photography world.

    WetcoastBob had this to say on Oct 20, 2010 Posts: 29
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