Applications: when numbers touch the ridiculous

Funny. Big phone manufacturers are constantly shooting data around to prove how big, good; tough, thought leading and amazing they are. Nothing against that, of course… but it is pretty mind-blowing how much irrelevant data is used in trying to prove the case…

Allow me to pick one: number of applications available for the platform… Apple, RIM, Android, Windows 7 phones all boast a staggering number  of different applications that run on their platforms, and post nebular statistics on downloads. In all these infographics, Apple leads, followed by Android.  Scary thing I notice: people use these stats to determine which phone next to invest in.

Let me tell you this: the number of applications is utterly irrelevant. There is a gazillion apps available for my iPad. I could not care less: most of these apps are no apps I would ever use, or pay for. Some are –to my use- utterly unsuitable, badly made, not working, or of a general quality that makes me long for the Spanish Inquisition to deal with the developers.  Same for my Blackberry. I can have thousands of apps available. I just not want them.

Cruising over the app stores and download platforms of the big 3, I find more apps than rocks in the asteroid belt just outside Mars… but most of those… well, you get the picture.  Only a small percentage is stuff I would actually use. And I am a power user…  –  Nielsen proves me right: While about 35% of U.S. adults now have apps on their cell phones, only 24% of adults actually use them. About a tenth of all U.S. adults don’t even know if their phones can run apps.

So… look for handy applications. Quality over quantity. Select the top 10 applications that will make your life more easy, and more enjoyable. Trust me: the other stuff will be forgotten on your expensive touch screen within days.

The new magazine is digital

I am a nostalgic guy. I love the smell of old books. The unforgettable feeling of leather bound poems. The unique aged look of old, forgotten wisdom. I can be found every free moment in my Corbusier long chair fiddling with one of the books of my most precious prize: my library.

And still, I find myself more and more reading electronically. A Kindle did not do the trick; I found it a cheap-surrogate paper knock-off. The Sony e-reader was even worse. I hated it. But lately, I find myself enjoying reading on the iPad. Though it is a ridiculous expensive machine to use for just reading it replaces slowly but surely the many magazines that decorated my coffee table.

Before my many editor friends go berserk: I still love the magazine concept. Glossy tailored pieces of wisdom, tailored to my needs by passionate professionals.  I read TopGear, Home and Garden, DMix, The Word, National Geographic, Vogue, CQ,  Le Figaro, Wired,… but to be honest: most of these magazines have now a digital iPad version that I prefer over the hard-copy one.  Quality of texts stays the same, lay-out as well: the online versions benefit of the great artwork, stylish layout and what have you more. But the electronic paper that my iPad is, gives me a nicer touch. It interlinks with video, augmented reality, social networks. It gives me the same experience as before, but honestly: better.

If you do not believe me: check out a National Geographic, or a Wired in digital form: there is no way back…

I will not give up my books. Ever. But magazines will be digital. Call it evolution… 😉

Steve Jobs and my mom…

Mom tried to raise me to be an honorable citizen. Thinking of it: so did dad. Greet people. Thank them. Speak with two words. Be helpful. Pay for things you need. Get older ladies safely across busy streets.

Honestly, they succeeded quiet well.  I was managing reasonably good, trying to be mister almost perfect. And then… I bought an iPad. And my world shifted. Because mister Steve Jobs disagrees with mom. He does not want me to be a nice citizen.

My iPad has all this great tools and things. It’s a fully mobile, highly connected dog-and pony show. But to make half of the stuff work, mister Jobs wants me to cheat. I live in Belgium, and iTunes will not let me buy ebooks. ITunes will not let me buy TV-series. iTunes will not let me buy movies. No buying, no renting. God and Steve know why.

I cannot even buy my favorite stuff in another country than Belgium. iTunes will not let me. American Express and Visa ensure there is nothing wrong with my credit. There is something wrong with iTunes. There is something wrong with Steve.

Now that he pocketed a small 1000 dollars, I discover that some nice features of my iPad only will work if I rip or download illegally. Apple will not take my good money for legal entertainment on my kosher personal iPad.

Sorry mom… blame Steve. But nothing will stand between me and an iPad driven Monthy Python.

An iPad after all?

One of the great things about the weekends is that I can cuddle in my favorite Corbusier long chair, with something mighty nice to drink,  John Coltrane’s melancholic saxophone through my Sony acoustic system…and something to read. While I spend my evenings and nights devouring novels and romans, my weekends are for catching up on newspapers and scientific magazines. Guess what, more and more I read those online… on the screen of my laptop. And… that is not very compatible with my relaxed dude-in-long chair attitude. No good way to hold the microcomputer.

41, and trying to find a way to justify an iPad. Midlife crisis, is that you?

Will it Blend?

Sometimes, I just like it when it gets a bit mesjogge ;-). The dudes and hipsters of Blendtec always crack me up. Blendtec makes high end food blenders (they come at a price :-)).

No better way to test it than trying to blend…. Well… about everything. Here is the blender test for the shiny new iPad!

Luckily, my good political incorrect friends @Topgear can easily beat this. With no one buying power cars, how about using the V8 engine to power a food blender! Richard Hammond and James May are left to taste Jeremy Clarkson’s Beef, Bovril and Brick smoothie, which goes down a treat!

Hell, yeah 😉

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