tundraboy's Profile

  • Jun 18, 2011
  • 132
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Latest comments made by: tundraboy

  • First up I congratulate you for the proper use of the term "cannibalize". But I disagree with you that back then it wasn't a boneheaded decision to cripple the MS tablet just to please the Windows and Office internal constituencies at Microsoft. I've always maintained that one of the main differences between Apple and Microsoft is that Apple is willing to win its customers over and over again. Microsoft on the other hand think that once they lose a customer, they can't win him or her back. (Which reveals a basic insecurity that their products aren't really that good and that they got their customers basically by pulling the wool over their eyes.) This has been just one big drag on innovation at Microsoft and why the most creative engineers have left it in disgust. The other main difference between Apple and Microsoft is that there is only one empire builder in Apple (and he sits at the only position in a company where an empire-builder does not harm the company) while Microsoft has a number of little petty empire-builders jealously guarding their turf and undermining the company's overall well-being. I still cannot believe, and this is testament to Gates poor management skills, that after he publicly declares the tablet to be the future of PC computing and Microsoft in particular, he allows the Office division to so blatantly undermine him and on top of that lets the head of the Office division keep his job. At Apple, once the company's direction is set, everyone works towards the common goal and anyone who undermines it would be tossed into the street in a Jobsian minute.
    tundraboy had this to say on Mar 13, 2011 Posts: 132
    Apple's Strength: It Isn't Scared of Apple
  • Fermat's last theorem was proved by Andrew Wiles around 1995 and he did not use a ton of computer time nor a Power Point presentation. He mostly used pen, paper and black (or white) board. The theorem that was famously proved using a computer is the Four Colour Theorem and it was solved in 1976.
    tundraboy had this to say on Feb 14, 2011 Posts: 132
    Is the White iPhone 4 being Held Back by Apathy?
  • Until congress guarantees net neutrality for wireless and wireline transmissions, any business built on streaming massive amounts of data will always be at the mercy of the internet carriers. There is no point in investing in a business like Netflix because once you become very profitable Comcast, Verizon and the rest of the gang will start to demand their 'fair' share of your profits. Apple needs to first secure its ability to stream data without being held hostage by the internet carriers. So they are better off piling up the cash and purchasing wireless and wireline transmission capacity when the opportunity presents itself.
    tundraboy had this to say on Dec 09, 2010 Posts: 132
    Apple Acquisition Targets: Part One: Netflix
  • I thought about it some more. Apple is building a server farm and they sell computers and mobile devices. So they have the two ends of the cloud computing model. I've always said cloud computing will not really take off until the bandwidth problem is solved. There are two components to that problem, one is technological --simple throwput. Cloud computing requires the ability to move lots of data. The other one is structural --the bandwidth providers have the Googles, Apples, and Netflixes of the world at their mercy. So, I think Jobs is piling up the cash because sometime down the road he expects he will need to free Apple from the threat of being held hostage by the likes of Comcast and Time Warner. And the only way to do that is to own your own pipes. Either by acquiring Comcast or Time Warner or by building your own. The wild card is the state of wireless technology. If wireless throwput and reliability reaches the point where it can replace wired internet transmission, then for Apple building its own wires just got cheaper. I look forward to a time when I only need one ISP for both mobil and desktop needs. That's probably the nightmare scenario for the cable & DSL providers.
    tundraboy had this to say on Nov 19, 2010 Posts: 132
    Apple Buying Something Big? How UnAppleish
  • No to dividends because it gets taxed as current income. AAPL should be viewed as a vehicle for long term investment because of what I believe is its humongous long term upside. Apple is doing the right thing when it doesn't pay dividends --it rewards the long term investors by not subjecting them to involuntary and higher taxes. (You can't choose when to take the dividends but you can choose when to sell your stock.)
    tundraboy had this to say on Nov 01, 2010 Posts: 132
    Apple Buying Something Big? How UnAppleish
  • So are you saying that there is no company that Apple could acquire to its (Apple's) benefit? You might be right. Though one wonders might there be some totally unrelated moribund industry where an application of the "Apple Way" can completely revolutionize things? Automobiles? Airlines? Department stores? Just shooting the breeze.
    tundraboy had this to say on Oct 29, 2010 Posts: 132
    Apple Buying Something Big? How UnAppleish
  • Hmm, after three years since the article and comment was first posted, I might add that the reason the French fired Bonaparte was he was losing the war, very badly at that. Actually, they should have gotten rid of him three years earlier, right after the Russian debacle.
    tundraboy had this to say on Jun 07, 2010 Posts: 132
    June 6, 2001: Steve Jobs: Hero
  • Apple does not have a monopolistic position in the smart phone market. Any argument that flows from that false premise is dead on arrival. To exercise monopolistic behavior you have to first be a monopolist. And no, there is no such thing as an iPhone monopoly. Or a Coca-Cola monopoly. Or even a Windows 7 monopoly. Apple's position in the smart phone market is that of 'most desirable product' and there are no antitrust hypotheses, theories, or statutes that make being in that position a basis for regulation or population. Otherwise we would be in the position of punishing companies for selling great product. Sheesh.
  • Oh and by the way, other than my near-rant about openness. I think the article was spot on, not that my opinion should matter one bit to anyone. As a dominant smart phone seller, 3rd party development tools would benefit rival smart phones at Apple's expense. To cement and expand their dominance, Apple absolutely has to shoot down these 3rd party tools now, while Apple is still the most profitable and thus first choice for app developers. They have to do that to fulfill their fiduciary obligations towards the shareholders.
  • This "openness killed the Mac" line has been tossed around for so long now that people have come to accept it as gospel truth. In truth openness did not kill the Mac. (Okay, stunted really but 'killed' is more dramatic.) Two things killed the Mac: One, IBM's overpowering prestige in the corporate world and two, Sculley's greedy, short-sighted decision to sell the Mac at insanely high prices. Bear with me here. Back in 1981, corporate desktop computing was at its infancy, Apple was a young company run by a pair of hippies. There is no freaking way that a Fortune 500 IT purchasing manager was going to recommend Apple II's over the new IBM PC. Just no way. But would anyone here claim that an IT manager picked IBM because the IBM PC was an 'open' machine? Of course not, they picked IBM because it is IBM, the company whose institutional knowledge of business computing dwarfs everyone else's, the company with the rock solid financial footing that will be around to support their products well into the next millenium. So let's throw that 'openness made the IBM PC a winner' canard. Even if IBM kept the PC closed, they would still have dominated corporate desktop computing which then flowed into domination of home computing. Let's move on up to 1984. The Mac comes out. It's a positively revolutionary innovation that made computing a lot easier and more accessible to the non-geek customer. It's still going to be hard to go up against Big Blue, but maybe you have a fighting chance with the snazzy new interface. But what does Sculley do? Insanely high prices for the Mac! Hooray, Tiffany pricing for the "computer for the rest of us"! Instant niche product! The Mac became a runt not because it was 'closed' but because it was overpriced. Not only was it overpriced, it was overpriced when it had no right to be given that the main competitor was Big Blue. So we'll never know if the Mac would have succeeded if it pursued the right pricing strategy but we do know it wasn't closed-ness that killed it. Now, let's think about openness some more. Aside from desktop (and laptop) computing, in the history of modern commerce, has there ever been any other successful technologically complex, mass consumption product that pursued an open strategy? Cars? Radios? TVs? Game consoles? MP3 players? Let's go a little lower tech. Fridges? Toasters? Dishwashers? None! There was a role for openness in PCs though. Openness allowed Microsoft to wrest control of the industry from IBM. Openness made it possible for Microsoft to cultivate the PC clone market which turned IBM into just another hardware manufacturer thus forcing them to relinquish control of the industry to Microsoft. So let's put this openness-is-the-best-strategy myth once and for all. And if anyone still stubbornly believes in it, I give you desktop Linux.
  • I'm thinking Microsoft doesn't deserve to be represented on a speaker panel tackling "corporate competition and how leading companies develop a competitive edge". Because they're competitive strategy is 1. Inherit a monopoly from IBM and then 2. use that monopoly in a criminal way to establish monopolies in other markets. Microsoft has nothing to contribute on how to make a better product that customers will choose even if there are other alternatives. Although, they do have a lot to contribute on "what NOT to do . . ."
    tundraboy had this to say on Apr 13, 2010 Posts: 132
    iAd: Apple's Retaliation to Google
  • You mean that guy who sacrificed long term growth for the sake of short term profits by saddling the Mac with insanely high prices that assured niche status for a revolutionary product?
  • I'll beg to disagree on this one. What you saw on the video was not a Penguin exec demoing a web page. What you saw was a Penguin exec demonstrating how he and his whole company are totally clueless about what's been happening around him the last 10-15 years. This is stuff that Dorling-Kindersley, The Learning Company, and host of other software publishers have been doing for a long time now. He really just made a fool of himself going up there and presenting an interactive web page as if it's cutting edge stuff. That said, the written word is not in danger of disappearing. The same people who read now will keep on reading on and if eBooks offer a convenient solution to the bulk and portability problem, then eBooks will thrive. If it doesn't offer such a solution then it will die, but not because it gets superseded by interactive websites. And unless we all decide to stop teaching our children to read, then I believe there will always be a significant subset of the population who will be avid and insistent readers, and a smaller subset who will be avid and insistent writers (not web designers). 'Enhanced books' will cater to the population (that has always been there) who would rather see the movie, watch TV, or fool around with an interactive website, instead of reading the book.
    tundraboy had this to say on Mar 11, 2010 Posts: 132
    How iPad Will Kill the eBook
  • 'Over-teched'. Seeking your permission to use that phrase in the future, Mr. Seibold. I've been searching for a word that conveys exactly what 'over-teched' (shades of 'over-sexed') suggests. Capital word smithing old chap!
    tundraboy had this to say on Feb 11, 2010 Posts: 132
    Apple's Biggest Challenge with the iPad
  • @UrbanBard Funny, my idle prognosticating leads me to a conclusion totally opposite from yours. I think we will actually end up with just one computer rather than 5 or 6. That means that iPhoneOS and MacOS will merge in function. We will all own a single iPhone-sized device that works as a touch screen mobile computer when we're out of the house, but can be connected to your keyboard and screen at home to do large-screen computing tasks. (The mobile device bcomes a touch pad.) The key is a combination of vastly more powerful chips, vastly more compact storage, and a well developed cloud computing infrastructure. If you need to do large-screen computing on the road, bring your laptop console (foldable keyboard and screen), slip in the mobile device at the designated compartment and voila there's your laptop. But this is not going to be OS-X 10.8. So sorry, I digress.
    tundraboy had this to say on Feb 11, 2010 Posts: 132
    What's Next for Mac OS X?