Apple Rumors: Fun, Pointless, Evil…or All of the Above?

By  |  Monday, August 4, 2008 at 11:22 am

The Daily Mail’s iPhone “scoop” has inspired posts about Apple rumors. And posts about posts about Apple rumors. And posts about posts about Apple rumors, ad infinitum. This and other news after the jump.

The iPhone Rumor Mill
The UK’s Daily Mail ignited a minor firestorm when it reported that Apple will release a cheaper, more basic “iPhone Nano” in time for Christmas. Most bloggers who know what the heck they’re talking about say that the story sounds improbable; some bash the Mail and contend that it’s manufacturing rumors to generate traffic at its Website. I still think that if Apple history holds true to form, Apple will release such a phone at some point–but it will do so in a way that has little or nothing to do with the scenario outlined in the Mail’s story.

Life After Windows
Chatter continues on “Midori,” the Internet operating system that Microsoft is supposedly working on as an eventual Windows replacement. (Microsoft says that Midori exists, but that it’s “in incubation” and therefore not ready for public discussion.) The fascinating thing about Midori is that it’s impossible to discuss it without discussing a world that isn’t dominated by PCs running Windows. Just a few years ago, it was hard to figure out the road map that would result in such a scenario. Today, between cloud computing, the rise of Google, the resurgence of the Mac, and the evolution of the cell phone into a personal computer, the main question about the end of Windows’ reign is not if but when.
Read more at: BBC, Ars Technica

Cheap Headsets for the Criminal Class
Good news for folks who live in states (such as my home of California) that require hands-free use of cell phones while driving, but who don’t plan to obey the law: Aliph, manufacturer of the cool and popular Jawbone Bluetooth wireless headset, will give you twenty bucks off a new Jawbone if you’re caught ignoring it. (The Jawbone must be purchased online at Aliph’s site.) Clever idea, but I feel sad for the good, upstanding, law-abiding citizens who never violate the law in the first place and must therefore pay more for their Jawbones than those who choose a life of crime.

Mercora No More-a, the music service formerly known as Mercora, has ceased operations. The company was always full of interesting ideas, but never settled on one business model, let alone one name. It was originally launched as an eBay-like marketplace that would have let you bid on songs, then switched goals to become a peer-to-peer service that let you stream songs from other folks’ music collections. (It leveraged differences in Canadian copyright law vs. U.S. policy to do this legally, effectively importing music streams across the border.) Its Wikipedia entry says that its mission ended up being “to catalogue and organize the world’s music and make it universally searchable and legally listenable,” a knockoff of Google’s mission (“to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.” Too bad it never fulfilled it; let’s hope somebody else does someday.
Read more at: GigaOM

Graphics Power, Thy Name is Larrabee?
At this week’s SIGGRAPH graphics show, Intel is beginning to talk about Larrabee, a platform for graphics processors based on the good ol’ x86 architecture, with an unspecified number of cores. (Intel says that Larrabee will support “many” cores, but that won’t translate into anything on par with the hundreds of cores in ATI and NVidia’s next-generation chips.) The first products based on Larrabee won’t show up until late 2009 or 2010, and it may be even longer before ones aimed at garden-variety computer users who up, but hardcore games are already intrigued. So am I–even though I can’t hear the name “Larrabee” without thinking of Get Smart.
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