There's been a recurring theme in the tech industry as of late. That theme goes something like "everyone's loosing their damn minds!" The sheer absurdities coming from the tech industry are mind-boggling.
I'll start with Apple, since they're such an easy target. I was hoping that in a post Steve Jobs climate that there might be room for independent thought again inside their headquarters. The opposite seems to be happening; at least inside their legal department. Some say it's desperation because nobody at Apple knows how to innovate without Jobs telling them how. Whatever the story may be, it seems that Apple thinks that suing everything in site is the only way they're going to stay in the game.
The latest insult to fly from Apple's legal team is against Kodak. This just baffles me. Kodak made digital cameras and printers. The first is an area that Apple has never been in, and the second Apple abandoned more than a decade ago. Maybe they're thinking about getting into both areas, but when was the last time a Kodak camera or printer was serious competition to anyone? Not really since the instant camera days, which is why they went bankrupt. Apple typically goes after companies that are serious competition and are doing as well or better than them in the same field. There's no way they can justify going after Kodak, even with the usual corporate doublespeak they use for their lawsuits.
Apple's actions as of late smack of a desperate company that can't keep pace with a rapidly moving industry. It's completely insane, because other companies will retaliate, and only the lawyers will win. The consumers lose no matter what, because of the amount of money having to be redirected from product development into the legal department.
One of Apple's ongoing targets has been Samsung, and I can't say they don't deserve it sometimes. This is a company notorious in their South Korean homeland for corruption scandals. This is also a company that follows the mantra "iterate, don't update."
Samsung recently released the Galaxy Tab 2. It's a 7", dual core tablet running Ice Cream Sandwich. Here's the thing... they just released the Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus back in November. And you guessed it... it's a 7", dual core tablet running Honeycomb.
What. The. Hell.
The hardware is virtually identical. One of the headline features of the Galaxy Tab 2 is an "upgraded Android market." Really Samsung? That's reaching pretty hard. I almost feel some pity for the shill that had to get up there and do the corporate dance pretending this thing was new. Wouldn't it have been cheaper to just offer a software update for the tablet you released not even four months ago?
I know those suits with Apple can't be cheap, but when you're making moves like this I think that maybe you and Apple are made for each other. Like Selma and Louise; partners in crime driving off a cliff together. We can just hope that you two don't take the whole industry with you.
It's been a while since I had a good rant like this, but the growing insanity of an industry trying to sue itself out of existence is just getting to be too much. Make good products that people want to buy. Offer choice, then provide support and updates. It's really not that hard, and people will want to buy your products if you can do those simple things. Competition is a good thing. It keeps everyone on their toes and keeps innovation moving forward.
The venerable MyDoom worm is still alive and kicking, even though security companies issued anti-virus signatures to catch it over seven years ago.
Yes, there are people on the Internet running security software that's seen nary an update in all that time. These folks purchased a computer in 2003, and never bothered to change the trial anti-virus that came pre-installed. Or, they're running no anti-virus at all.
Neither option is excusable, because there are plenty of free security programs available for download. Seriously. Norton 2004 won't do jack squat against any virus, Trojan, worm or cookie that's been developed since then.
I really shouldn't be surprised, since there are still people who use dial-up Internet access and AOL, who think that they will suffer a terrible fate if they don't forward chain e-mails and who open every e-mail attachment they receive.
You can protect against all sorts of online threats, but it's pretty darned hard to protect against stupidity.
I'm not sure what it is about the Germans, but it seems they've made a simulator for pretty much everything. The latest that I've entertained is a title known as "OMSI - Der Omnibussimulator."
The included map is set in mid-80's Spandau, Germany. Yes, that's Germany before the wall fell. Odd setting choice aside, I have to say in all seriousness that the simulation is up there with some of the most detailed I've played. From the sound of the bus as it rolls over segmented concrete, to the modeled functions of nearly every single switch, button, and lever, to the complaints of your passengers as you slam on the brakes to avoid some idiot cutting you off, it all has an impressive weight to it. It's technically very impressive, and the open mod tools mean lots of possibilities with addons.
That said, this definitely isn't a title for everyone. I admit my tastes are at times a bit odd, and that I have a hard time resisting highly detailed sims no matter how mundane the subject may be. But if you have this itching desire to be a bus driver without the job commitment, OMSI is definitely for you.
I love experimenting with various Linux distributions. It's a weird kind of fun for me. A lot of those distros fight back, though. The ones that drive me the most crazy are the ones that insist on using obscure disk image formats like raw and img. One I was trying tonight used a raw disk image. I downloaded it twice. The imager they linked to produced an error upon attempting to flash the image to a USB drive. DD complained that the file was in use when it wasn't. Daemon Tools would mount the image, but Windows couldn't open the virtual drive. I know what you're saying... the Ubuntu img tool for Windows works great! Yeah... right up until you want to get the full capacity of your flash drive back. Full formats are all that work for me, and I can only imagine what that's doing for the life of the flash memory. And it doesn't work with this raw file.
I like problems like this, because I like solving them. I defeat these things, they don't defeat me. But at some point the annoyance level passes my threshold. Tonight it came at about three hours after having made zero progress.
This is what you'd call an angry rant. I do not understand why everyone can't just use ISO files. ISO file + Pendrivelinux's universal usb installer = job done. And I don't have to do a full format of the flash drive afterwards! Seriously! Make it happen! If people like me can't even get your image to a bootable device, who is actually going to use it?