The Fool's Gold At The End Of The iPad Rainbow

from the control-ain't-the-answer dept

The media has been making a huge deal about how the iPad is supposed to "save the business," because suddenly everything will return to apps, and people pay for apps, and toss in a big dose of "Steve Jobs!" and there's some sort of magic formula which includes some question marks and inevitably ends in profit! Now, the iPad does look like a nice device, and I have no doubt that it will do quite well for Apple, and many buyers will be quite happy with it. But it's not going to save the media business in any way, shape or form. It's just the media chasing a rainbow in search of gold that doesn't exist.

A few months back, I tried to ask a simple question that we still haven't received a good answer to: all of these media companies, thinking that iPad apps are somehow revolutionary, don't explain why they never put that same functionality online. They could. But didn't. There's nothing special about the iPad that enables functionality you couldn't do elsewhere. But, it goes deeper than that. People are being taken down by app madness. Because the iPhone has sold a bunch of apps, suddenly old school media players are suddenly dreaming of the sorts of control they used to have, and pretending it can be replicated on the iPad. But that's a big myth.

Danny O'Brien has a brilliant post on the similarities between the iPad and the CD-ROM. The CD-Rom was supposed to save old media (as the iPad is supposed to now) -- but tried to do so mainly by trying to make the old format move to a digital world, by retaining the control, and by adding a little digital razzle dazzle. But what it failed to do was really enable what the technology allowed -- and that was because what the technology allowed totally undercut the old business model.

The media is running to the iPad because they think it's magically going to transport them back to a world where there is scarcity and they can charge ridiculous prices again. The Wall Street Journal, for example, is apparently offering an iPad app that's more expensive per week than getting a combined subscription to both the paper version and the online version. There's a lot of wishful thinking going on here.

Cory Doctorow does a great job further unbundling this myth, by pointing out a key fallacy that many in the media are making: that the average consumer is as dumb as a doorknob and needs a super simplistic device to function:
I remember the early days of the web -- and the last days of CD ROM -- when there was this mainstream consensus that the web and PCs were too durned geeky and difficult and unpredictable for "my mom" (it's amazing how many tech people have an incredibly low opinion of their mothers). If I had a share of AOL for every time someone told me that the web would die because AOL was so easy and the web was full of garbage, I'd have a lot of AOL shares.
In effect, the iPad, as beautifully designed as it is, is trying to take away many of the benefits and flexibility in digital computing these days. It's trying to limit what you can do, because it thinks people want to be limited. And, while closed platforms often are great at the beginning to get people to move to something new, in the long run, they are regularly superseded by more open platforms.

But, as Cory points out, the whole interaction model of the iPad seems to have been developed with the mindset of the media companies, not the real end users:
But with the iPad, it seems like Apple's model customer is that same stupid stereotype of a technophobic, timid, scatterbrained mother as appears in a billion renditions of "that's too complicated for my mom" (listen to the pundits extol the virtues of the iPad and time how long it takes for them to explain that here, finally, is something that isn't too complicated for their poor old mothers).

The model of interaction with the iPad is to be a "consumer," what William Gibson memorably described as "something the size of a baby hippo, the color of a week-old boiled potato, that lives by itself, in the dark, in a double-wide on the outskirts of Topeka. It's covered with eyes and it sweats constantly. The sweat runs into those eyes and makes them sting. It has no mouth... no genitals, and can only express its mute extremes of murderous rage and infantile desire by changing the channels on a universal remote."

The way you improve your iPad isn't to figure out how it works and making it better. The way you improve the iPad is to buy iApps. Buying an iPad for your kids isn't a means of jump-starting the realization that the world is yours to take apart and reassemble; it's a way of telling your offspring that even changing the batteries is something you have to leave to the professionals.
Again, the beautiful design and the power of Apple/Steve Jobs to market the product will undoubtedly allow the product to do well initially. For Apple. But it's not going to save the media industry... and it seems unlikely to be any more revolutionary in the long run than the CD-ROM was.


Reader Comments (rss)

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 2nd, 2010 @ 7:56pm

    Take it away, Gawker: http://gawker.com/5508236/the-ipad-is-not-your-savior

    Some people really think you should buy an iPad. Others really think you shouldn't. Some people think it will save magazines. Others think it will not. We would like to point out that it's just a computer.

    Ask the music industry how the iPod revolution affected them.

    http://skynews.com.au/finance/article.aspx?id=447069

    Struggling music group EMI faces being taken over by its bankers after failing to clinch a deal to sell the North American distribution rights for its artists to Universal Music Group or Sony Music.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Apr 2nd, 2010 @ 8:06pm

      Re:

      From the Gawker comments:

      It is so not a computer. As a computer programmer, I spit on your "computer" that you can't program. For your own use at your own will. Not to mention that you can't create much content for either.

      You need to call this what it is: Apple controlled content delivery device. It's like a bunch of books/magazines/videos that you have to pay for, but can't own (and more expensive and less usable than normal ones).

       

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        milrtime83 (profile), Apr 2nd, 2010 @ 9:09pm

        Re: Re:

        "Apple controlled content delivery device."

        Which is what all of their products are becoming. I thought the same thing with the apple TV. And the ipod/iphone may not have started out that way, they have kinda morphed into it.

         

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        Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 3:57pm

        Re: Re:

        It *is* a computer, albiet one that runs a single dedicated application, that has a simple GUI and limited functionality and expandability, using a kind of "plug-in" model.

        It's physical IO and UI is the most limited of any device Apple has ever sold, and ranks lower than my Logitech remote control.

        It just doesn't thrill me. There will be better devices later this year, by just about ever definition of "better".

         

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          Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 4:18pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          I heard, on the news, that Apple is expected to sell 6 million iPads this year. So here's the part I don't get, not all of those 6 million users are going to purchase, say, Specific Media Content Delivery App, and those that do will no longer visit the website if they purchase an app for $2.99, period, or for $14.99/month.

          So, my question is, where is all this gold in the gold mine?

          Sure, it's there for Apple, no doubt about it, but what about the Specific Media?

           

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        rochrist (profile), Apr 4th, 2010 @ 4:58pm

        Re: Re:

        Of course you can program it. The SDK is available right from the main Apple iPad page. $99 and for that you can develop for the iPhone as well.

         

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      taoareyou (profile), Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 4:34am

      Re:

      It's a portable console. A 20+ year descendant of the Atari 2600 with better graphics. The cartridges are invisible, purchased wirelessly and called "Apps" now.

       

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      wanksta, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 12:16pm

      For those that have bought an iPad and are constantly tweeting/facebooking about your experience that NO one cares about, we recommend the iEelSlap application:

      http://www.techwankers.com/2010/04/03/apple-approves-techwankers-first-ipad-applicat ion-ieelsmack/

       

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      PopeRatzo (profile), Apr 4th, 2010 @ 3:27pm

      Re:

      I didn't realize EMI is facing bankruptcy. This is welcome news indeed.

      Thanks for brightening up my day. I hope the rest of the major labels follow closely along behind them.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 2nd, 2010 @ 8:31pm

    The article is correct, the ipad won't save the content business, but it does fill a niche.

    I'm a Unix/Windows/MacOS sys admin and to me the various restrictions of the ipad are a selling point. I want a giant iphone precisely because it is controlled and sandboxed. I want something to read my email, do a bit of browsing and play a few games without having to worry about application updates, viruses and registry rot. I want to sit on my couch and relax, not do my day job. That doesn't make me my mom, it makes me someone who wants some content delivered without having to worry about the underlying operations of the content delivery device.

    The DRM restrictions are the trade-off and I remain confident they'll get loosened over time as content providers come to terms with the new reality, just like what happened with the tunes on itunes. I'm willing to wait for that sane world before I purchase ebooks, plenty of others won't worry.

    When I want to do more serious things I'll use my "real" computers. The ipad isn't going to replace them and isn't trying to.

     

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      AG (profile), Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 6:33pm

      Re:

      I agree with this in a way.

      To bring up the hated "my mom" argument up again. I don;t think my mom is too dumb to use a "REAL" computer. What's too complicated for her is keeping up with security updates, anti-virus updates and just any software update in general. She doesn't understand defrgamenting the hard drive, crashing drivers or re-installing software.

      However, she's isn't dumb enough to pay extravagant prices for the same things she can get elsewhere for much less... or free. She can use the iPad Safari browser and the millions of free apps with free content, without having to worry about security issues, pop up ads that want you to install "add ons" or other assorted junk on the internet. A closed platform is plenty helpful there.

      So a closed platform is good business for Apple, which sells the hardware but if the media companies think they can make a bundle on selling content, they had better think again. Making money in the iPhone market remains as difficult as ever (except for Apple, of course) and it's not going to magically change with the iPad.

       

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      JEDIDIAH, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 4:57pm

      Red is now blue and blue is now Red.

      > I want something to read my email, do a bit of browsing
      > and play a few games without having to worry about
      > application updates, viruses and registry rot.

      Most people call that a Mac. A Linux box will do adequately for this purpose as well.

      This bit of rhetoric is a good example of the inclination of iPad fans to deny the old in favor of the new. They have to denigrate the Mac in order to make it seem like there's a point to the iPad and make excuses for it's unecessarily closed nature. In all likelihood they would have said the exact opposite thing to you 6 months ago. They would have extolled the virtues of the Mac and told you it was just the thing for what they would advocate an iPad now.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 7:31pm

        Re: Red is now blue and blue is now Red.

        Odd... My 70 year old mom, who really isn't very technical, does just fine using a Windows computer. She uses Facebook, plays games, surfs the web and does her banking. I moved her from XP to 7 recently and she has continued on without missing a beat.

        People want them so they can say they have them and that's fine if that's your thing. While I don't think they're completely useless, they're certainly not much more than a novelty.

         

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    Brooks (profile), Apr 2nd, 2010 @ 8:48pm

    Indeed

    I agree, the iPad is just like CD-ROMS. Given the failure of the central CD-ROM store, where users could instantly download now CD-ROM's that they knew were designed for their particular hardware, and without re-entering credit card data... how can the iPad store expect to succeed?

    Oh, wait. Hang on. It's almost like Apple's business model is a *marketplace*, while CD-ROM's were plastic discs. Damn, if only Techdirt had posted articles about the business problems one gets into when one thinks one's business is about phyiscal media rather than the actual content.

    Oh, wait. Techdirt *did* post that kind of content. Hey, Mike, you should read this cool site, Techdirt. They talk about this reason-to-buy concept that's really pretty cool.

    Like, if you have hardware of known specs and a central store that vets content (more or less) for quality, and which handles payments so you don't have to re-enter payment data or trust the app provider with your credit card.

    This same site, "Techdirt," I think, talks about providing value to customers. Stuff like pleasing aesthetic design, simple operation, and it-just-works integration of hardware and software. As opposed to old CD-ROM's, which were a physical media and not a software/hardware ecosystem.

    Hey, wait, it's almost like iPad apps have nothing to do with CD-ROM's. Huh.

    (I personally don't like Apple's walled-garden model... but comparing it to CD-ROM's is pretty disingenuous)

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Apr 2nd, 2010 @ 9:08pm

      Re: Indeed

      Did you read any of the links ?
      Apparently not.

       

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      Sneeje (profile), Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 7:35am

      Re: Indeed

      The reason why arguing by analogy is so perilous is because of people who require the analogy to be one-to-one the same for every element of possible comparison. If they are not, they get blinded by only those elements of difference.

      The article and blogpost is not about how they are exactly the same, but how there are certain elements of similarity--elements you completely ignored or misunderstood in your response.

       

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      Mike Masnick (profile), Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 2:42pm

      Re: Indeed

      Hi Brooks, thanks for stopping by, but in the future, it might help to actually read what was written, rather than going off on a whole rant about stuff I didn't write.

      I agree, the iPad is just like CD-ROMS. Given the failure of the central CD-ROM store, where users could instantly download now CD-ROM's that they knew were designed for their particular hardware, and without re-entering credit card data... how can the iPad store expect to succeed?

      Uh, no one said that. There was a single point of comparison between the CD-ROM and the iPad: which is that both were pitched as media saviors. That's all.

      Oh, wait. Hang on. It's almost like Apple's business model is a *marketplace*, while CD-ROM's were plastic discs. Damn, if only Techdirt had posted articles about the business problems one gets into when one thinks one's business is about phyiscal media rather than the actual content.

      You seem to be arguing something that wasn't said, and I can't fathom why.

      Oh, wait. Techdirt *did* post that kind of content. Hey, Mike, you should read this cool site, Techdirt. They talk about this reason-to-buy concept that's really pretty cool.

      Indeed. But nothing I said here contradicted myself... UNLESS you didn't read what I actually wrote and pretended I said something totally different.

      Now why would anyone do that?

      This same site, "Techdirt," I think, talks about providing value to customers. Stuff like pleasing aesthetic design, simple operation, and it-just-works integration of hardware and software. As opposed to old CD-ROM's, which were a physical media and not a software/hardware ecosystem.

      Again, you seem to have read way, way, way too much into a single point comparison, and wasted all this time pretending I said something I didn't.

      You really have nothing better to do with your life than make up stuff that shows you didn't read what you're responding to?

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 7:36pm

      Re: Indeed

      Typical bitchy fanboy. Rather react to anything negative immediately without pulling their head out of their ass long enough to take the time to read.

      Go stroke Jobs some more.

       

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    milrtime83 (profile), Apr 2nd, 2010 @ 9:02pm

    Time magazine is another "what the hell are they thinking?" $5 per issue on the ipad when they have a free iphone app. Seriously, is anyone going to consistently pay news stand price for a digital magazine?

    Maybe I just don't understand regular people but I thought the only time people paid news stand price was when they were in an airport or somewhere where they needed to kill some time and then maybe they would pay that much for a single issue. But I don't see how anyone would pay that much every week for something they could get cheaper elsewhere.

     

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      L'Apsed Subscription, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 10:30am

      Re: TIME Mag

      I've been a TIME subscriber for about 15 years, and the price was always well below newsstand. I enjoyed it, so did the Hubster. But recently the issues have grown so thin, the content:ad ratio swinging toward the inverse of what it once was, we decided to not renew this year. I still don't know if I'll miss it or not (I do like print media for portability and tactile reasons, always will; as a truly scarce good, print will never die, methinks, but perhaps become more precious?).

      Yet just today I'm actually revisiting the decision based on TIME's article by Lev Grossman regarding the iPad - which I haven't finished yet but is really funny so far. To paraphrase one observation: Tablet PCs are like pieces of paper except they're more expensive and break when you drop them.

      I won't be buying an iPad, I'm not appreciative of such proprietary, exclusionary formats...and I'd be too afraid to drop the thing. I'm not about to convert to subscribing to e-content either. The reasons have been outlined here and other places for that wariness, but it just doesn't square with me for reasons I cannot explain. Too fleeting, maybe. Too easily lost or taken away...certainly too expensive if they're wanting 5 bucks an e-issue.

      Maybe I'll re-up my sub...hm.

       

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    Blatant Coward (profile), Apr 2nd, 2010 @ 10:53pm

    iPad=iSkip.

     

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    James, Apr 2nd, 2010 @ 11:15pm

    I-pad ; fools gold

    You are very correct in your Reasoning. we are all just cash cows and they will suck out all the cash from you that you allow. They Ipad is just an over priced bigger screen
    kinda sorta iphoneish thang. There are some things comimg down the pipe whitch will blow it away. I'm not anti mac or apple, The others aren't perfect.But give me a break. Im a new tech professional. My problem is tech is not my God!

     

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    ECA (profile), Apr 2nd, 2010 @ 11:19pm

    Another closed environment.

    As with the console games..
    This is a closed environment.
    MS and SONY want CONTROL over what is placed on their machines. You have to go thru these 2 vendors to get software On their consoles.

    Look up the History of what happens with the ATARI 2600 and ACTIVISION. Atari was trying to CONTROL the console and games...Activision Ran with it, and made tons of games, pushing Atari out of the market.
    You are getting a CHEAP LAPTOP with NO PORTS at a VERY high price, for its abilities.
    Apple wants FULL control over any device/product/program you use on this device.

    Look at the war for Video tape, between JVC(VHS) and sony(BETA), JVC released its copyrights..and let ANYONE make the devices and tape..BETA went into the DITCH.

    iphone is at v4?? hardware?? and those with v1..are stuck.
    PS3 has had an upgrade to CUT Linux use on the machine.

    I like the entourage.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Apr 2nd, 2010 @ 11:39pm

      Re: Another closed environment.

      Look up the History of what happens with the ATARI 2600 and ACTIVISION. Atari was trying to CONTROL the console and games..

      What about The Commodore? Last I saw, they were still a solvent company.

      Look at the war for Video tape, between JVC(VHS) and sony(BETA), JVC released its copyrights..and let ANYONE make the devices and tape..BETA went into the DITCH.

      Not true. Beta has gone through several iterations for the professional realm. Maybe you missed the press release, but is even HDCAM/HDCAM SR. It was the first format in digital, first to support 1080i, and remains the standard for professional broadcast.

      So are you saying that Apple and iPhone is "Professional Grade" while the others are commodity items? If so, I can see why the professionals are so happy to see such a great new ecosystem emerge for their content.

       

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        John, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 2:26am

        Re: Re: Another closed environment.

        "What about The Commodore? Last I saw, they were still a solvent company. "

        Must have been a while since you saw that...they went bankrupt in 1994.

         

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          Jon B., Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 8:58am

          Re: Re: Re: Another closed environment.

          And to clarify, the trademark was basically bought it someone else. Commodore of today ain't Commodore. I think the same goes for Atari - Atari today ain't the same company afaik

           

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        Anonymous Coward, Apr 5th, 2010 @ 7:33am

        Re: Re: Another closed environment.

        Beta and BetaMax are not the same thing.

         

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      Anonymous Coward, Apr 5th, 2010 @ 7:37am

      Re: Another closed environment.

      Nonsense. Atari spawned the crash of 1983 because they did NOT control their console and games. Anyone could make an Atari game. So everyone did, and most of them made utter crap. Nintendo game in a couple years later and dominated the market, and they controlled their console utterly.

      To your larger point, Apple wants control over the iPad and iPod. That's it. Don't like it? Buy a Macbook. Don't want a keyboard? Buy a Modbook. Or don't buy Apple. Isn't choice great?

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Apr 5th, 2010 @ 8:27am

        Re: Re: Another closed environment.

        I can see Apple controlling apps for quality. But they dont do that. How many fart apps can you find? And how many legitimate apps get kicked out?

         

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    Hephaestus (profile), Apr 2nd, 2010 @ 11:27pm

    Dude (Mike) you should have had me write this article

    I would have done better ... and I wouldnt have held my punches

    "It's just the media chasing a rainbow in search of gold that doesn't exist."

    The media giants continue to search for the magic bullet to save themselves. Every six months there is a new solution that never seems to produce the expected results. The iPad is the current incarnaton of this hope that is soon to be dashed. Apples goal is to sell iPads not to support a soon to be dead business model. Much like the iPod saved the recording industry, the iPad will do the same for the News and magazine industries.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 2nd, 2010 @ 11:49pm

    2010 Meet 2001

    As Mike showcased in 2001: That New Apple Device Better Be Cool

    But then, there are those who never learn from the past...

     

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    Hephaestus (profile), Apr 2nd, 2010 @ 11:54pm

    Dear Rupert Murdoch this line sums it up

    "... taking his content out of Google, but I say do it, Rupert. We'll miss your fraction of a fraction of a fraction of a percent of the Web so little that we'll hardly notice it, and we'll have no trouble finding material to fill the void."

    Cory Doctorow expresses it perfectly. Little by little more people are producing more news reducing the share of consumers available to traditional news outlets.

     

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    Hephaestus (profile), Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 12:04am

    Dear John

    Dear John

    I am leaving you. You are to old for me. Everytime you sit on my lap you leave nasty filthy stains on my hands and clothing. Everytime I spread you open you show me things I dont want to see and I am really am not interested in you any more. If only you understood how much I used to like your kind. Today I am throwing you out I dont need newspapers anymore.

    Big Ole GRIN ....

     

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    Hephaestus (profile), Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 12:08am

    Damn didnt get three in a row with the dear john joke ...

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 12:29am

    I wrote a Dear John letter a few weeks ago.

    :-)

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 12:57am

    Less Is Actually More

    I design and implement High End Control Systems, so take my comments with a grain of salt.

    The reason Apple devices sell so well is that you can throw a user into knowing one nothing and they can't do anything really dangerous for quite some time, and are pretty. So by extension, media corps believe if they get a piece of that pie that will be rich. Considering that you just spent $500 for a giant iPod touch, is it so far reaching that you wouldn't spend $10 on an app?

    Think of this, you can always add choices, but it is much harder to convince a user to give up choices, even if they aren't using them. That is the Apple moniker for success.

    And no, I am not a fanboi of anything. Except Roku and Netflix, for now.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 1:01am

    ...and there's some sort of magic formula which includes some question marks and inevitably ends in profit!



    Considering the source, the irony here is almost overwhelming.

     

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    enrolled agent test, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 2:05am

    We're really suckers...

    For buying an enlarged version of the iTouch. But vanity does that to all of us. Who cares about computing? Who cares about the technical terms and technology associated with this? Ask every iPad owner you know and they won't care either.

    We're more after the "pride" of owning such an expensive, redundant gadget.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 2:27am

    Yup. I completely agree that "We're really suckers"

     

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    Fake John, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 3:02am

    Re: Re: Re: Another closed environment.

    Nope, Commodore still exists as Commodore International. You should see the video that didn't come through. It may bring back some memories.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eY2gK1MPgh8

    Secondly, you need to see that people talk down comments on there own blogs, which leads me into #3....

    Thirdly, I have to agree that "We're really Suckers"

    Fourthy, BetaMax eventually led the way for HDCAM.

     

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    Martin, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 4:42am

    Here's a patent related iPad story that may be of interest...
    http://games.slashdot.org/story/10/04/02/2110233/DavidGoliath-Story-Brewing-Between-App le-and-iControlPad-Makers?from=twitter
    TL;DR version: company makes iPad controller thing for playing games.

    It's in production already.

    Apple have tried to patent it.

     

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    Tetsubo (profile), Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 5:42am

    iPad

    I simply have no use for this product. Or any dedicated e-reader either. Until we have right of first ownership for digital material I won't be buying any digital content. Or the device designed to use it. Plus the thought of that nice, big screen without any cover just mkaes me shiver. I can pick up a netbook for less and never worry about the screen. Jobs can kiss my rump.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 5:46am

    I personally think that apple is paying too much for the tech magazines and online media like pc world for keeping their ipad in news everyday and make sure that it is the top story all the time. If you are using the pc world gadget for your igoogle homepage then you will know that at any given point of time 2 out of 3 headlines in that gadget or either apple or apple ipad. It is so sad that there are still mad/sad people who just go by these 'corporate world cultivated noise'
    and buy these products only to pay more to use it with something else. I do not want to enslave myself to anything by limiting myself from anything good in the world.
    ONE WORST (PROBABLY THE BEST) EXAMPLE WHAT THIS COULD DO IS
    Mozilla firefox app was denied entry into the apple's iphone or ipad world for many months and they finally withdraw their application saying that apple follows a very wrong way of competetion. Since apple has its own safari which is nowhere better than firefox, decided not to allow their application by just not giving them any clearance and not even saying why??
    This kind of arrogance from microsoft and apple will only push people to opensource platform.

     

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    planetMitch, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 5:50am

    And the ipod won't sell either

    Millions of folks said apple would never sell any iPods either - trash, closed system, too expensive, etc. etc. etc.

    The iPad is brilliant and may not save the print media business, but it will open up so many other industries... just watch.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 6:59am

      Re: And the ipod won't sell either

      You are probably correct, but that changes nothing.

       

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      Sneeje (profile), Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 7:37am

      Re: And the ipod won't sell either

      The point here is not that it won't succeed, but that it will not transform the industry in such a way as to save various industry business models that are struggling to survive.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 1:55pm

      Re: And the ipod won't sell either

      The iPod wouldn't have taken over the world without iTunes and the iTunes Store. The overall infrastructure, closed open or however you want to spin it, is what made iPod succeessful.
      .
      And guess what. That same infrastructure is already in place for iPad, and like it or not it's deeply entrenched in modern popular culture. All the freetards of the world can whine helplessly about "control" vs. "freedom" and Apple will just laugh all the way to the bank.
      .
      Traditional media? Doomed anyway. iPad? It's the next generation of personal computing. There will be 30 iPad clones at next year's CES. None of which will match iPad in build quality, ease of use, or infrastructure. You'll see.

       

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        JEDIDIAH, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 5:12pm

        Re: Re: And the ipod won't sell either

        > All the freetards of the world can whine helplessly about
        > "control" vs. "freedom" and Apple will just laugh all the
        > way to the bank.

        ...another favorite Apple retort. Call people pirates or freeloaders.

        My video jukebox based on open technology is far more interesting than the iTunes store because I don't limit myself to the walled garden.

        Amazon beats the snot out of iTunes as a media store. Walmart has it's place too.

        There's considerable value to the consumer from healthy competition.

        I don't want to be forever more forced to buy Apple hardware just to play something I made the mistake of buying from Steve Jobs. I want to use my stuff on any device by any maker just like older forms of audio or video.

        "control and freedom" means I get to own the copy of the thing I bought rather than it being a glorified rental.

         

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      Mike Masnick (profile), Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 2:43pm

      Re: And the ipod won't sell either

      Millions of folks said apple would never sell any iPods either - trash, closed system, too expensive, etc. etc. etc.

      Did you not read the post? I actually said I expect the iPad to sell quite well.

      I just don't think that the media is right in believing it's a savior device for them.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 8:03pm

        Re: Re: And the ipod won't sell either

        It's a novelty. It won't revolutionize anything. Good marketing was behind the iPod since there were others before it. The iPhone/Touch was a logical "next step" in the evolution process of combining several devices that fit in our pocket.

        This simply isn't revolutionary and really wasn't an "oh wow, that's really cool" announcement. It's a niche item that the Jobstown Kool-Aid drinkers latch on to as the latest thing. They need to get a handle on their cravings.

         

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    Sean Dougherty (profile), Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 5:52am

    Mothers and Tech.

    Actually, I understand what the techs are saying about their mothers. I'm not even a tech and I remember telling her to just program the VCR herself and if she didn't try to do it, she'd never learn (she never did). The average tech must spend so much MORE time than I ever did explaining stuff that they assume everyone around them is a time-sucking idiot who needs a computer with the complexity of set of blocks in order to not call them every 10 minutes with a question. You're no doubt correct that most of them would rather do the work of learning to use a more useful, open machine but before they even try, they've called the person quoted in the article, who makes the rational, self-interest observation that stuff needs to be easier to use.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 7:04am

      Re: Mothers and Tech.

      "stuff needs to be easier to use"

      Certainly this is true for some segments of society, however this does not mean that a locked down system is the only way to go.

       

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      Atkray (profile), Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 11:10pm

      Re: Mothers and Tech.

      My personal experience is give your mother (or the grandmothers that I frequently help) a 24+ inch monitor and a good keyboard and wireless mouse (so they aren't fighting the cord all the time) and put a game or 2 on the desktop. Come back a month later and you will be amazed at how much they have investigated on their own, it is all about making people comfortable. Apple does that.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Apr 5th, 2010 @ 8:46am

        Re: Re: Mothers and Tech.

        My dad was 64 when I got him an inexpensive laptop - he'd never 'computed' before that. He was physically incapacitated and used it for banking, grocery orders, email, medication scheduling, and above all: googling whatever crossed his mind. Being held hostage by your own body after a lifetime of activity is brutal emotionally. At least his active mind had an outlet.

        It was a Windows machine but after a bit of instruction he did the same, poking around and learning on his own. He loved it. :)

         

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    Bradley Stewart, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 6:00am

    Do I Need Another One?

    I was just sitting around thinking as I have been prone to do a lot of since I retired several years ago. I was up early in the morning watching the CNBC financial reports and watching the show hosts on Squawk On The Street who by the way I really like a lot drooling over this new device by Apple and Steve Jobs who I am sure is a plenty clever guy but lets face it he hasn't mentioned me in his Will so I'm getting a little tired of hearing about him and all the money he has as I won't be getting any of it. Anyway I have digressed. As I look around my apartment. As for a lot of things that I own one of them would be enough, yet I have three to five of them. Yes some of them have somewhat better features but not that much better features that made it worth buying the additional two to four items as backups. I'm not just referring to computing and or computing and entertainment devices though I am including them. Of course what we do are our own personal choices but myself included maybe we should all stop and think before we rush out at the speed of light to pretty much buy just another one.

     

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    Steve R. (profile), Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 6:49am

    Its the Marketing

    Apple has done something that other content distributors seemingly have not been able to emulate. That is hardware that is Apple ready.

    I have been looking to get a desktop radio for the house and did buy a new radio for my car. One of the features I was looking for is USB connectivity since the CD is "dead". Virtually every radio with a USB port carried the logo "iPod compatible". Additionally there is the exclusive deal AT&T and Apple struck for the iPhone.

    In researching the USB connectivity (yes the USB drives work) my daughters Samsung MP3 player would not work through the USB port, but did work through the "axillary in".

    The point, Apple has gone to the trouble of laying the marketing road in anticipation of releasing its products. They also, unlike Microsoft, seem to have created a loyal fan base.

     

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      JEDIDIAH, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 5:06pm

      Re: Its the Marketing

      Being "ipod compatable" doesn't necessarily mean what you think it does. You should fully test the head unit in question and not make any assumptions. I have a new car advertised such functionality and it's been somewhat of a disappointment.

      Something that plays mp3 off of disc media is probably going to be more useful and usable. It all depends on what your expectations are.

      I still miss my JVC DVD head unit. I can't put it in my current car because it's proprietary like a Mac.

       

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    Hoeppner, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 6:49am

    NYT could easily get away with charging that much.

    After all you're talking about people who are willing pay a price starting at $499 for a computer you don't even know all the specs for, and one you have almost no control over.

    IPad is just a crappy hype buy in of a bunch of old technology brought together in "almost" clever ways.

     

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    Ima Fish (profile), Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 6:59am

    "the average consumer is as dumb as a doorknob"

    Normally I'd agree with you Mike. Why would people suddenly start paying to do on an iPad what they can get for free on a PC?

    Remember when email was new and cool and when we first could change the sound to inform us of new emails? We never would have paid for that.

    But yet on cell phones, ringtones is a huge business. People pay tons of money for it.

    Remember back in the 90s when everyone was chatting on ICQ for free? We never would have paid for it.

    But now people are running up thousands of dollars of bills per month texting on their phones. What the frick?!

    I'm not saying that people will pay to view content on their iPads. But if they do, I won't be shocked at all. Perplexed? Yes. Disgusted? Yes. A little annoyed at the sheep-like mentality most people have? Sure. But shocked? Absolutely not.

     

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      abc gum, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 7:16am

      Re:

      Agreed.

      Off topic, but I would like to add - I hate those stupid ringtones everyone is so proud of. What's really funny is when people answer their stupid cell whilst sittin on the crapper. This has led to a society which expects everyone to be accessible 24-7 and they get annoyed when they can not reach you immediately. I say TS and get off my lawn :)

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 8:34am

      Re:

      difference between icq and text message is location location location. people pay big money for compressors and nail guns even if a hammer works fine. value is how you see it. the ipad and other similar machines will be game changers on the back side of the great time of free going away.

       

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        abc gum, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 9:02am

        Re: Re:

        Good points.

        The nail gun provides efficiency and speed to an otherwise labor intensive task. I do not see the ipad in a similar light.

        re: "free going away."

        As Cory pointed out, News Corp (and others) can go behind a paywall and few will care, others will not even notice.

        It will make no difference unless the so called free items are forcibly removed. Use of a locked down device plays into the hand of those pushing such an agenda.

         

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        Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 10:21am

        Re: Re:

        Free will never go away. People love free. You know who really loves free. It's these kids today. Soon to be adults tomorrow.

        But, yeah, you're right, the iPad will totally demolish things being free.

         

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        Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 8:11pm

        Re: Re:

        Please explain how the iPad is going to do this? I want to see some of these brilliant thoughts on how the iPad is going to revolutionize things? I don't read up on the self congratulatory "I'm an Apple owner" sites so I'm interested in what you guys think is so wonderful about this device that really has little value to the average consumer?

         

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          Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 9:17pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          Uh, it's Apple? I mean, before iTunes and the iPod you couldn't even purchase music online! So it just logically flows that before the apps and the iPad, you couldn't even purchase newspapers or magazines online!

          But now you can!

          And selling mp3s online totally saved the recording industry. They're not having any troubles at all! Except from those dirty, filthy pirates and freetards.

          Apple will save the day, once again! All hail Apple!

           

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      Mike Masnick (profile), Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 2:45pm

      Re:

      But yet on cell phones, ringtones is a huge business. People pay tons of money for it.


      Have you looked at the ringtone market lately? It plateaued a few years ago, and started dropping... just about the point when people figured out they could set up ringtones for free...

      Remember back in the 90s when everyone was chatting on ICQ for free? We never would have paid for it.

      But now people are running up thousands of dollars of bills per month texting on their phones. What the frick


      Give it time. We've pointed out that it won't be long before IM platforms move to the phone and are able to replace SMS for free...

      Just wait and see. People may pay at first, but eventually they discover how digital works.

       

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    Radjin, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 7:25am

    Not quite the same as a CD

    A CD can't be adapted or upgraded to fit the times or needs of the users. It can't upgrade to a higher quality or different format when the standards change.

    I love my computer I built myself, but I like the idea of a simple device that I can sit on my coffee table, hold in my hands and read and not have to worry about crashes or power failures. I want it to just work well.

     

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      abc gum, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 9:11am

      Re: Not quite the same as a CD

      The CD did not need its maker to replace batteries either. It seems that there are tradeoffs everywhere.

      In addition, many so called upgrades only remove capabilities which the Lords of Lockdown do not like. The rug may be pulled out from beneath you at any moment and there is little you can do about it since they already have your money and you are most likely signed up to a multi-year contract with a large ETF. This may be acceptable to some, and so be it. However, there are those who refuse such terms and hopefully continue to do so.

       

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      Calvin (profile), Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 1:22pm

      Re: Not quite the same as a CD

      >

      It's been around for years, it's called a book

       

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      Calvin (profile), Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 1:25pm

      Re: Not quite the same as a CD

      'I like the idea of a simple device that I can sit on my coffee table, hold in my hands and read and not have to worry about crashes or power failures'

      I've got lots of those, they're called books

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 2:28pm

        Re: Re: Not quite the same as a CD

        Yeah, but you can sell those books for money or lend them to anyone. e-Books, well, not so much but it's Apple!

         

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      Mike Masnick (profile), Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 2:47pm

      Re: Not quite the same as a CD

      A CD can't be adapted or upgraded to fit the times or needs of the users. It can't upgrade to a higher quality or different format when the standards change.


      I never said it was like a CD. I was only saying that just like the CD-ROM, the iPad is being pitched as a savior to the media, and that seems unlikely -- for many of the same reasons the CD-ROM did not save the media.

      I did not say the iPad and the CD-ROM were the same.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 10:00am

        Re: Re: Not quite the same as a CD

        plenty of successful media distribution systems use zeros and ones. the ipad will use zeros and ones too so they will certainly be successful. your logic extend.

         

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    DOS, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 9:04am

    tun Sie wie ich zu sagen

    And, while closed platforms often are great at the beginning.

    For the youngsters out there:

    The PC prevailed in the early days because it was open. You could take off the shelf parts and build a PC, fairly cheap. This spurred many many companies to build computer parts for consumers.

    Why do you accept devices that limit what you can do with them?

    When did this become acceptable?

    Jump to today:
    Compare a dual quad core Mac Pro, which is now just glorified PC hardware, to a similar configured PC.

    HP XW6400 - same spec a the above mentioned, Just around 2 grand. Try that with a MAC. I did. I wanted a MAC Pro to run windows server & VMWare server, but couldnt justify the extra 1500 bucks.

     

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      abc gum, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 9:18am

      Re: tun Sie wie ich zu sagen

      Thankfully there still is a market from which one can purchase piece parts and assemble their own computer. The result can be of higher quality for less money than available elsewhere. It also is, by design, easier and less expensive to maintain.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 10:25am

        Re: Re: tun Sie wie ich zu sagen

        Not to mention that there are more people who sell open systems then closed ones. I live in a smallish town and there are a bunch of people selling their services to build computers as opposed to the actual computer sellers, otherwise known as WalMart employees.

         

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    fisher man, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 10:15am

    @33 nice try

    now go back and add the rest of the sentence

    "Cory Doctorow does a great job further unbundling this myth, by pointing out a key fallacy that many in the media are making: that the average consumer is as dumb as a doorknob and needs a super simplistic device to function: "

    this implies buddy ol pal that were not as stupid as you think you are.

     

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    L_J, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 10:17am

    I have no problem with the ipad being a closed system. I have been an Apple user since 1984 and all Apple products have been for the most part "closed systems" that does not mean I could not install a faster dvd burner, add ram or add an external hard drive. A lot of Universities are going to macs with win7 built into them for a machine that does both operating systems and I suppose if one wishes one could plug linux in to. Now granted the ipad is not anywhere near as flexiable but I am going to own one anyway sooner or later.

    As to the ipad being the savior of print media that is apple marketing and hype pure and simple. I am not going to pay to have print media content streamed to me. the old media will hang on barely, but to even think that the ipad will be its savior was a very gulliable notion in the first place.

     

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      alternatives(), Apr 4th, 2010 @ 3:06pm

      Re:

      all Apple products have been for the most part "closed systems"

      Not at all true. Apple ]['s were so open the schematic came with it. They were so open they got cloned.

      It was the protected status of the Microsoft BASIC in the machine that ended up shutting down the clone market.

      The lesson Steve learned - be closed. If Mr. Jobs had his way, the Mac would not have any bus inside the machines to plug cards into. And these days - how much of the Apple hardware sold HAS an expansion bus (beyond USB)?

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 10:21am

    dont forget actors and musicans use them (MACS)

    you know the people that sue kids for music tunes and want life sentences for downloading a music tune

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 10:49am

    cd rom doesnt call home. cd rom cannot be tracked. cd rom cannot get new information. cd rom was not a way to move up to date information. the comparisons are laughable.

     

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    Chris Mikaitis (profile), Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 11:43am

    Good reference...

    I love the South Park reference in the first paragraph... Oddly appropriate...

     

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      Richard Corsale (profile), Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 11:50am

      Re: Good reference...

      I was watching a business plan pitched on overhead projector once that ended with a slide of the underwear elves. I almost fell out of my chair... I'll never forget it.. :)

       

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    Richard Corsale (profile), Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 11:46am

    IMax+Ipad=ewwww

    It's like iMax, they have a central institution that utilizes cutting edge technology to sell customers something they cant get from content. I'm talking, of course about the experience. Think about it like this, if a customer buys a magazine he has an expectation that it convey information, opinions etc etc. The first Color magazines sold because they were offering a new experience. I imagine that people who would never have purchased it otherwise would have bought it and it would have seemed that it was the potion that saved Maggot monthly magazine. Of course expectation wet up a notch so did the competition. Markets are reactive, not typically proactive. Today, publishing color photos in a periodical is a golden patent.

    Im just sayin.. It might provide temporary relief for these industries.

    one more thing, I worked way too hard to make this fit the adolescent subject title, I know. I was just going to say it's more about convenience than 99 cents, and it's more about that experience being delivered in the moment, when the buyer is ready to spend rather than the "whip out the credit card and think about it as you enter/re-enter the obscure CV2# on the flip side etc. Spending with the tap of a finger is an effective formula for selling to the Id rather than the Ego. I cant wait to hear about celebrities in iPad rehab.

     

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    Bruce Partington, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 12:38pm

    54 comments and nobody mentions web apps

    Amazing. I know the ideology here can trump the facts, as it does with Doctorow's arguments. I salute the Makers and their Manifesto, really I do, but you don't have to lie to yourself (or your readers) if you really believe you have right on your side.

    Doctorow's little secret (aside from the location of his Apple tattoo, if he's still got one) is that there's an easy way to get your apps on the iPhone without needing Apple's approval or permission. Anyone here ever hear of Gmail? Google Docs? It's quite odd that people like Doctorow who promote open, non-proprietary standards like HTML 5 and CSS conveniently forget them when they want to score an ideological point against Apple.

    If you can create a web app anybody with an iPhone/iPod Touch/iPad can use it in Mobile Safari (which is based on WebKit just like every other major browser aside from Internet Explorer). You don't have to learn Objective-C or Cocoa Touch, you don't have to give Apple any money, and your app will work on any platform that's got a browser. And nothing stops you from making a website that is likewise viewable in Mobile Safari and other browsers.

    Doctorow's remarks though well-intentioned only make sense if the World Wide Web ceases to exist. Is that really what he expects?

     

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    djb, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 1:06pm

    Closed platform

    It's obvious to me that anyone who demands an open platform simply isn't in Apple's target market. So what's the problem? Go buy something other than the iPad.

    Anything else is just whining...

     

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      Mike Masnick (profile), Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 2:49pm

      Re: Closed platform

      It's obvious to me that anyone who demands an open platform simply isn't in Apple's target market. So what's the problem? Go buy something other than the iPad.


      I'm not saying that closed is bad. In fact, I said that it could do quite well (did you read my post?!?). I'm just saying that it won't be the savior the media seems to think it will be.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 8:31am

        Re: Re: Closed platform

        what you are saying is anyone that doesnt agree with you is a fool. you said that very well and very clearly. it is a pretty arrogant point of view considering the product isnt hardly on the market yet.

         

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          abc gum, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 9:01am

          Re: Re: Re: Closed platform

          I read through Mikes post again ... I did not find the part where he called a fool all those who disagree, as you claim he did "very clearly". If it were clear, then possibly it would show up in the text ... but then maybe it is just your imagination.

          Possibly you refer to the title "The Fool's Gold At The End Of The iPad Rainbow"? If this is indeed the case, then possibly it is you who misunderstood the entire post, including the links - you did read the links, right?

           

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          Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 10:58am

          Re: Re: Re: Closed platform

          You're just being dense. I mean, really dense. Have you never heard of Fool's Gold? Do you not know how to use Wikipedia? Or is it too "FREE" for you?

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fool's_gold

          The iPad will demolish Wikipedia and it's freeness!

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 1:34pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Closed platform

            you are reading the words but not the post. masnick is heaping scorn on those who thing ipad will change anything. but until it has had time in a marketplace it is too early to know. his post calls them fools without using the word, bad business models might be another way he would say the same thing. he calls fail before the test starts. that is a fail itself.

             

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              Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 2:05pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Closed platform

              The iPod and iTunes has been around for a while now, and EMI is still going bankrupt.

              The iPad will be great for Apple. Will it save newspapers and magazines? Nope. Only the newspapers and magazines can save themselves.

              Will newspapers and magazines go back to their former 20th century glory? Nope.

              I blame the internet.

               

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                Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 3:22pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Closed platform

                you see you dont know what will happen. you are already dismissing things without any proof. masnick did the same. fail whale.

                 

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                  Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 9:23pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Closed platform

                  How are 1 million iPad users, paying $2.99/month to access the New York Times going to save a business that spends about, what, $250 million/year?

                  And that assumes that all 1 million iPad users will purchase the New York Times app. Maybe in ten years when there's 100 million tablet PC users then maybe, but by then, won't the New York Times be out of business?

                  My proof is that the iPod hasn't saved the recording industry so why would the iPad save the publishing industry?

                  The only thing that can save the respective industries from going under are themselves.

                   

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                  Mike Masnick (profile), Apr 4th, 2010 @ 10:21pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Closed platform

                  you see you dont know what will happen. you are already dismissing things without any proof. masnick did the same. fail whale.

                  Heh. It's called a prediction. No one knows what will happen for certain, but it's okay to make informed educated guesses based on what we do know.

                  I don't see how it's a "fail whale" to state an opinion.

                   

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                    Anonymous Coward, Apr 5th, 2010 @ 8:03am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Closed platform

                    those motorized buggies will never outperform a horse. those airplanes will never fly over the atlantic. you are stating an opinion you are dismissing a concept. hey you old people get off my lawn.

                     

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                      Anonymous Coward, Apr 5th, 2010 @ 10:45am

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Closed platform

                      I predict that more magazines will go out of business this year. How do I know this? Well, I look at all the magazines that went under last year and the year before that and the year before that and so on.

                      I mean, there are only so many magazines left. I suspect a few will survive but it won't be because of the iPad.

                      In the future, there won't be any lawns to get off of.

                       

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          Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 8:21pm

          Re: Re: Re: Closed platform

          what you are saying is anyone that doesnt agree with you is a fool. you said that very well and very clearly. it is a pretty arrogant point of view considering the product isnt hardly on the market yet.

          I didn't see him say that anywhere. Are we reading into things? Maybe using even the slightest amount of punctuation would make your post seem more enlightened and make you seem like much less of a fool.

           

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    Old Lady PC Geek, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 1:19pm

    Forget it

    I am much too technically savvy for anything that begins with a lowercase "i"
    And I'm old.
    And I'm a mother.
    And I'm definitely smarter than most when it comes to electronics.
    Which is why I never had AOL or have never and will never own anything Apple...

     

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    DazzaJ, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 3:09pm

    Too Expensive and its an Apple

    I assume, like the iPhone you will need to have Apples approval for everything you do on it. An allow report back back to apple for compulsory updates and verification of applications etc.
    Also Apples DRM and strict rules will always deter many , and people will eventually realise that open formats will always be the better business model for media makers.
    Why sell media to a very small market, when you can sell to a far greater audience for less cost..
    No iDevices in this household!

     

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    Fake Steve Jobs, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 3:59pm

    LMAO

    "Hold your iPad. Gaze at it. Pray to it. Let it transform you. And do it soon, because before you know it we are going to release version 2, which will make this one look like a total piece of crap. Peace be upon you."

    http://www.fakesteve.net/2010/04/an-open-letter-to-the-people-of-the-world.html

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 4:17pm

    Now available without a prescription!

    Mike Masnick: now available without a prescription only on Techdirt.

    Fortunately we all know that Techdirt is not in the business of creating incendiary opinion. Fortunately we all know he does "real" journalism with responsible reporters and analysis.

    This is why he's against other media companies having a new way to distribute media.

    Point is, if you have a question, Mike will answer from his house located on the other side of the rainbow, next to the pot filled with fool's gold.

     

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      Chargone (profile), Apr 4th, 2010 @ 6:45pm

      Re: Now available without a prescription!

      ....

      or possibly he could be pointing out that the thing won't inherently save them if they continue to be utterly incompetent...

      you know, just maybe.

      waiting for a Saviour won't get you anywhere if you don't act to the best of your ability in the meantime. you'll just starve waiting.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 4:23pm

    Finally some objective analysis.

     

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    Pjerky, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 5:08pm

    This hubbub is going to end REAL SOON!

    Ok the iPad is an inflated iPhone with less features. While the media and Apple Fan Boys are going nuts over it, the novelty of it will wear off really quickly. We are looking at a device that people will soon start looking at and thinking "Why in the world did I buy this?".

    This iPad hysteria is very very annoying. I think Apple has finally bought into its own hype and loves the smell of its own farts (South Park reference).

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 8:28pm

      Re: This hubbub is going to end REAL SOON!

      There will be very few outside the brainwashed that will buy this and think that. The brainwashed will continue to worship it as a gift from the "chosen one" Steve Jobs.

      This thing's sales will drop quicker than Obama's job approval rating.

       

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    Sid Vicious, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 5:24pm

    Hey haters,

    If you don't like the ipad, don't buy one!!!

    . . . just that simple. No one is out to get you idiots, or cares about your drivel opinions. Now all of you just shut the f**k up.


    L8r

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 6:40pm

      Re:

      "The iPad shall saves us!" proclaims the media.

      "Like the iPod and iTunes saved the recording industry? Because EMI, 1/4 of the recording industry, is going bankrupt." - proclaims reality.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 8:25pm

      Re:

      It is entirely possible that you just do not get it.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 5:36pm

    I would wait. Seriously. Let the suckers buy the first round and get stuck with a buggy system. Look at the difference between the first and third generation of IPHONES.

     

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    Flakey, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 7:00pm

    Your money's worth

    Maybe you are happy with a locked down piece of equipment but most aren't.

    This is why Apple bricked the iPhone so many times is to protect that revenue stream. People jailbreaking their phones because they were not happy with the limited abilities provided with the apps store were saying that loudly.

    This goes back to the idea that nature arbors a vacuum, so do markets. If there is a vacuum someone will step forward to supply that need. If enough people get fed up with the idea they are not getting their money's worth, they will move on or make some change, such as jailbreaking.

    I personally do not want an iPad. I don't see it as a value at all. Then again, I didn't want an iPhone either for much the same reason. I don't enjoy tunes over a tiny speaker used for voice but with out the dynamic range necessary for hearing real music, including the bass. Nor do I want something to read my ebooks on that I can't load with my own ebooks. All in all it does not fit my lifestyle.

    Apple offers me nothing that I want to buy. So if the media is depending on me or those like me to resurrect the market, they've bet on the wrong horse.

     

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    Mac84, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 7:49pm

    How incredibly smug! As I sit in front of the tube, reading how stupid I am for ordering an iPad (pre order), I really am happy with this tool for this purpose, that is, an instant on, wireless surfer with battery life much longer than my laptop and much better readability than any smartphone. Yes all these apps could be implemented with HTML or JavaScript, but it just works so much more cleanly this way. Insofar as buggy first generation equipment goes, this is Apple, not Microsoft.

    All the experts that haven't held one of these things in their hands yet just don't get it. Just like those smug assholes that said that those Windows, Mice, Icons and Pointers constituted a WIMP interface that no "real" computer user would ever want. Or those geniuses that knew that the iPod would go down in flames because the Dell "DJ" was so superior.

    And I'm not too stupid to work a real computer, I administered networks of PCs interoperating with Apollos and Suns, back when an IP protocol stack wasn't part of windows 3 atop dos 6.22. Use an iPad and then tell me how certain you are Apple has got it wrong.

    No I don't think the iPad will single handedly save the old media industry or transform the pc industry. But it is a new class of device that is here to stay and will be another device to build inertia for apple and their iTunes/app store Eco-system. They continue to lock me in, but it's all good so long as they offer such sweet products and don't revert to such sleazy stunts as "Zune points" (69 zune points = one dollar). Given the time, I may be able to cobble together some open source solution to approximate what this thing does but i have a real life now and am more than willing to drop a hundred bucks premium for something I don't have to spend hours fucking with to reconfigure after my wife uses and breaks.

     

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    Angelique, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 7:54pm

    AMEN!!! What a great point!! Hopefully someone NOT at Apple will read and and go "DUH!" Why don't we make our regular website as cool as our "app"?
    This reminds me of the early ISPs wanting you to use their service to get access to "special" information. Back when companies advertised their www. and their "AOL Keyword." And where are AOL and Compuserve and all those other companies now? Bottom line is that the delivery method doesn't matter because we all connect to the same CONTENT. Hopefully all this app nonsense will die off in a few years. Maybe by the time some smartphone figures out how to do regular web browsing, including Flash.

     

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    Mac84, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 8:02pm

    How incredibly smug! As I sit in front of the tube, reading how stupid I am for ordering an iPad (pre order), I really am happy with this tool for this purpose, that is, an instant on, wireless surfer with battery life much longer than my laptop and much better readability than any smartphone. Yes all these apps could be implemented with HTML or JavaScript, but it just works so much more cleanly this way. Insofar as buggy first generation equipment goes, this is Apple, not Microsoft.

    All the experts that haven't held one of these things in their hands yet just don't get it. Just like those smug assholes that said that those Windows, Mice, Icons and Pointers constituted a WIMP interface that no "real" computer user would ever want. Or those geniuses that knew that the iPod would go down in flames because the Dell "DJ" was so superior.

    And I'm not too stupid to work a real computer, I administered networks of PCs interoperating with Apollos and Suns, back when an IP protocol stack wasn't part of windows 3 atop dos 6.22. Use an iPad and then tell me how certain you are Apple has got it wrong.

    No I don't think the iPad will single handedly save the old media industry or transform the pc industry. But it is a new class of device that is here to stay and will be another device to build inertia for apple and their iTunes/app store Eco-system. They continue to lock me in, but it's all good so long as they offer such sweet products and don't revert to such sleazy stunts as "Zune points" (69 zune points = one dollar). Given the time, I may be able to cobble together some open source solution to approximate what this thing does but i have a real life now and am more than willing to drop a hundred bucks premium for something I don't have to spend hours fucking with to reconfigure after my wife uses and breaks.

     

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    NAMELESS.ONE, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 8:16pm

    @66

    you expect the ipad to sell well mike? OH my, houston we have a problem....

    you are nto listening to what the posters are saying are you then?

    its not what WE want.
    THOSE wants include:
    A) modifications
    B) Programming our own apps
    C) external storage mediums and cross platform uses

    and thats just a start Mike.
    you have this big thing , have to recharge it and hope one day they dont just goto something else and your STUFFED

    people are wising up to the IT scams
    and over pricing and it wont be long after i suspect the USA gets ACTA rolling that the real pain begins.

    OLD media is already dead it just don't knwo it yet. LOOK at SCO GROUP...it was losing market share decided to sue everyone where are they, took 7 years but bankrupt and lost to novel for copyrights and next up IBM and RED HAT SMASH.

    if you do some research when lawsuits start its the sign the business is actually dead and over. ESPECIALLY when you contemplate suing any NON BUSINESS aka user

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 8:44pm

    did anyone else catch mr newscorp yesterday talking about how the future was in content deals? i damned near laughed myself sick.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 8:58pm

    i expect apple to do pretty well, but its hardly a "game changing" item

     

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    Anonymoose, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 9:17pm

    Um. Browser.

    It's a big iPod touch with a nice feel and a better web browser. (i'm commenting with it now). You know - for the Internet. And that is why it's not a media savior... Cause, you know.. The web is right there. On the iPad. Just like a computer.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2010 @ 10:34pm

    self fullfilling prophecy

    The marketing of this brick is the story. Time cover?! news rss's blowing up, every media outlet spammed to.

    Apple's for snobs and fools. In no way does its superior mac OS speed up my work flow in CS4 (for its $1.5k more).
    iPods play music exactly the same as my creative mp3 player, and are much more likely to break if dropped.
    My droid smokes my gf's iPhone hands down.

    best part of this whole thread tho.. that guy up there who said 'freetards' ... that guy's awesome... and he's right... because people are stupid and they like jewelry, which to me is the best analogy of all thing apple - jewelry. except jewelry actually holds value.

     

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    lens42 (profile), Apr 4th, 2010 @ 1:34am

    Jailbreak?

    Won't most of the complaints in this thread be rendered moot when (not if) the iPad gets jail broken? Without a required AT&T contract, it would seem that there would not much risk to this. Those that like the walled garden can stay there, and those that want to climb over the wall will. A greater truth than the ills of a closed system is that closing a system that wants to be open is futile.

     

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    Rekrul, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 7:55am

    Cory Doctorow does a great job further unbundling this myth, by pointing out a key fallacy that many in the media are making: that the average consumer is as dumb as a doorknob and needs a super simplistic device to function:

    I can introduce you to about a dozen such people.

     

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    Anonymous, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 9:37am

    It's Nothing, but everything

    So I get tired of reading all the same reviews. I have not seen any claims from Apple saying that this device is to replace the laptop or netbook. In fact they stated they culdn't even make a netbook for sub $500. The iPad is nothing near a netbook. I have one and quite honestly I would send it back. Bloated windows XP or Difficult to use Unix were my choices. Both I tried on it and both always had some issue. Never would it just turn on and work without a little tinkering. Look at TV's, you just turn them on and they work, I don't have to configure settings to get this station or that. The simplicity is the model.

    Apple makes things just work. People touted the same things with the iPhone when that was released. Limited, never gonna work. 10% of the market is pretty damn good, especially since the other players like blackberry and palm have been at it for years with no innovation. M$ had been in the phone software business as well and has repeatedly failed. Why than is Apple so successfull? Their whole business is set on a closed model of software and hardware.

    I read reports of it not multi-tasking. Well, either does my netbook. Not very well anyways. Besides, the screen in only 10 inches so how much can I get on there anyways.

    The whole point here is that the media companies have found a device that just works, is easy to use, and more portable than a laptop. It's kind of a pain in the ass to open up my laptop on a crowded bus or train. Nor am I gonna take 5 to 10 magazines with me everywhere I go. This "delivery system" is light, and carries everything I could need.

    P.S. Magazines have been on the internet. It's just not that convenient to read them on a laptop. Try it on a bus that is crowded. Good luck.

    Acknowledge innovation when it comes.

     

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      abc gum, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 11:26am

      Re: It's Nothing, but everything

      "Bloated windows XP or Difficult to use Unix"

      Microsoft bloat, agreed.
      I'm curious, what flavor of Unix did you load upon your laptop? Was it Solaris, possibly AIX? I tried many flavors of Linux on a laptop, but have not tried Unix and wonder how that worked out for you.

      "People touted the same things with the iPhone when that was released."

      What same things ... that the iphone would save the content industry? I do not remember that, but I'm getting old and they say that is the second thing to go, oh well.

      "The whole point here is that the media companies have found a device that just works,"

      Change "just works" to "is locked down and provides customer lockin"

       

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    Suzanne Lainson (profile), Apr 4th, 2010 @ 10:46am

    A hybrid?

    I anticipate that as new technologies come out, the content business will evolve. So if there is a future place for media and the iPad, we may not yet know what it will be.

    I've been impressed with the number of iPhone apps which allow people to make music. Many have been designed to allow people will no musical training to create music. There's far more innovation coming in this space than I have seen anywhere else in music. I don't think this was anticipated in the early days of the iPhone.

    Similarly, I anticipate that the iPad will trigger some innovation in content delivery and, more importantly, content creation and manipulation.

    Take news for example. Perhaps someone will develop an app that allows news consumption to be tied to game playing (e.g., those who are most aware of newsworthy events will be rewarded in some fashion). Can virtual goods purchases be built into the New York Times, for example? Probably.

     

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    I Hate Fanboys, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 11:26am

    Uh Oh! Apple Fanboy Defense Force, assemble!

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 11:44am

    Cory's much better, and more openminded co-editor, Xeni Jardin got an iPad.

    I've come to trust her more, over the years. Xeni isn't filled with rainbows and lollipops the way Cory and Mike are.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 11:48am

    The Fool's Gold At The End Of The iPad Rainbow

    Fortunately we all know that Techdirt is not in the business of creating incendiary opinion. Fortunately we all know Techdirt does "real" journalism with responsible reporters and analysis.

    If you have a question, Mike will answer from his house located on the other side of the rainbow, next to the pot filled with fool's gold.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 2:13pm

      Re: The Fool's Gold At The End Of The iPad Rainbow

      I'm going to so buy an iPad. And then I'm going to purchase the New York Times app for $14.99/month. And then I'm going to purchase the Wall Street Journal app for $14.99/month. And the I'm going to purchase the Boston Globe app for $14.99/month. And then I'm going to purchase the Time app for $14.99/month. And then I'm going to save newspapers and magazines because I, like every iPad owner, am a millionaire!

      Wait? The iPad can be hooked up to the internet? And those newspapers and magazines have websites? With content that's free?

      And then I'm going to purchase the Rimshot app for $2.99!

      The iPad will be great for Apple and those that can successfully create compelling applications for it. Will it save the 20th century media industries?

      Of course it will because every iPad owner is a millionaire!

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 3:00pm

    Re: Re: The Fool's Gold At The End Of The iPad Rainbow

    ""
    Wait? The iPad can be hooked up to the internet? And those newspapers and magazines have websites? With content that's free? And then I'm going to purchase the Rimshot app for $2.99! The iPad will be great for Apple and those that can successfully create compelling applications for it. Will it save the 20th century media industries?

    Of course it will because every iPad owner is a millionaire!
    ""

    What's funny is that it's my choice to buy an iPad. It's my choice to buy an app, and it's my choice to buy content.

    Just as it's your choice to not like the iPad because it allows non-gurus and non-rocketscientists to do amazing things with technology. It's the caterwaul complainers that yelp like trained sea lions who don't want people to have a choice, and insist that you should be mollycoddled into desiring something else that already in production, like a shiny CD Rom disk, or a paperback novel.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 3:11pm

      Re: Re: Re: The Fool's Gold At The End Of The iPad Rainbow

      The iPad will save publishing! Just like the Kindle saved publishing! Just like the internet saved publishing!

      Why does the publishing industry keep talking about how they're going under. They've been saved more times than a lady tied to a train track.

       

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    Rasmus, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 3:12pm

    Baby Boomers...

    ... are at the top of the media corporations, especially on the boards.
    ... are used to pay for media.
    ... are afraid of technology.
    ... are consumers as a lifestyle.
    ... are confused by the workings of the internet.
    ... are to old to change, unless change doesn't seem like a change.

    ... will buy a lot of iPads.
    ... and will happily transfer their buying habits for media to the iPad.

    ... may provide the media corporations with a 15 year long smooth transition period, thanks to the iPad.

    In the meantime others will build new business models for younger people.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 4:16pm

      Re: Baby Boomers...

      ... and run out of money trying to make it work. no revenue means no way to make it work.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 3:31pm

    Summary of this entire story: Caterwail and Sealions

    That does it. I'm going back to watching videos on YouTube of Barking Sealions and Caterwaul. It's more entertaining than following this drivel.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m9uN8Z7N95k

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zPhwKiiWzoA

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 6:06pm

      Re: Summary of this entire story: Caterwail and Sealions

      Those videos remind me of the entrenched media industry; their bark being much worse than their bite.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 6:38pm

    Will the iPad change the world? Will it take over computing?

    Is that what you are arguing about? Is that what your are trying to prove, that it won't happen?

    You are missing the point. Apple doesn't want to take over the world, although you may think they want to. Do you really think Apple wants to wipe PC's out and put Microsoft out of business? They don't. They sell their highpriced computers to a select few and do so at a good profit. What percentage of the PC market do they own? 12%?

    iPad? Obviously the lines at Apple stores prove they have a market and I would imagine they will be very happy to sell to their fans. Will they make a few new fans? Sure, but they don't need to have an iPad in every house to make money and that, boys and girls, is the name of the game.

     

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      taoareyou (profile), Apr 4th, 2010 @ 6:46pm

      Re:

      This article had nothing to do with Apple's motives and everything to do with the media's perception of how it will save their dying business.

      Did you forget what you read by the time you got through the comments?

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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      Mike Masnick (profile), Apr 4th, 2010 @ 10:22pm

      Re:

      iPad? Obviously the lines at Apple stores prove they have a market and I would imagine they will be very happy to sell to their fans. Will they make a few new fans? Sure, but they don't need to have an iPad in every house to make money and that, boys and girls, is the name of the game.

      Did you not even read the post? I said that the iPad would likely sell well and that it would do well for Apple.

      That's not what the post is about. It's about whether or not it will save the media business....

       

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        Chargone (profile), Apr 5th, 2010 @ 3:40pm

        Re: Re:

        ya know, generally speaking, the big media companies do have one thing right:

        the vast majority of the general public are idiots...

        (I'm reminded of Churchill's 'best argument against democracy'... then there's this comment thread :S )

         

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 7:02pm

    True Tao, but as with anything on the web, things change and after going through most of the comments, my perspective is different than the original content of the post. That is the challenge of social media, you can't control where things will go. But yes, I did forget what I had read by the time I posted. :) The article talked about A, I chose to talk about B along with quite a few others.

     

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      Suzanne Lainson (profile), Apr 4th, 2010 @ 7:43pm

      Re:

      The article talked about A, I chose to talk about B along with quite a few others.

      I also think it may be premature to know where either the iPad or the media using it will end up. As I mentioned in an earlier comment, the most innovative developments I see in music are coming from the iPhone applications being designed to help non-musicians make music. The amount of experimentation is breathtaking.

      It's quite possible that iPads will transform media creation and media consumption in ways currently not foreseen. People having been talking about a tablet to replace newspapers at least as far back as 1993 (I looked at a mock-up back then), so it isn't surprising that that some people have pushed for the actualization of this long-held dream.

      The true killer app involving the iPad and media is likely to be something far different than what is being talked about now. As I mentioned before, perhaps it will involve some sort of gaming. No one would have foreseen the rise of social gaming just a few years ago. And no one would have foreseen the combination of geo-location and gaming.

      We have ereaders for books, but the book as a concept is likely to change quite a bit in the future. Here's an excellent introduction to that.

      Books in the Age of the iPad Craig Mod

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 9:32pm

    Some crazy Russian kid will develop an app that takes social media content and distills it down into a "Just the facts, ma'am." kind of take on the news of the day and everybody will buy it and be happy with it. Apple will be happy and rich. The crazy Russian kid will be happy and rich. The users of the iPad and that app will be happy.

    You know who won't be happy? The old media companies with their old owners and their old plans charging for over-priced content. "But content is king!" they'll say.

    No, communication is king. It's always been king. More people use Facebook and Twitter than go to the movies.

     

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    freediverx, Apr 4th, 2010 @ 11:05pm

     

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    AtillatheHen (profile), Apr 5th, 2010 @ 4:52am

    once again, Apple has a wonderful idea, a slick new piece of hardware, an easy operation, that goes nowhere and communicates with no one else's stuff. Great beginning but pretty obviously self-contained.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 5th, 2010 @ 10:53am

    I think this guy nails it:

    Magazines are to articles like music albums are to singles!

    The iPod has not save the music album, and the iPad will not save the magazine.

    http://www.businessinsider.com/henry-blodget-no-the-ipad-wont-save-media-but-it-will-ch ange-the-world-2010-4#comment-4bb6233f7f8b9afd61ab0800

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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    mrharrysan (profile), Apr 5th, 2010 @ 11:27am

    I love how Mike has to keep chiming in with, "That's not what I was writing about. Did you even read the post?"

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Apr 5th, 2010 @ 10:52pm

      Re:

      it is more like that isnt what i wanted you to swallow from my rant please eat it again. a few rants on the same subject in a short period shows he is trying hard to play down the ipad and its implications. very sad to see.

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 5th, 2010 @ 8:19pm

    Too bad Mike, the discussion morphed into something different than your original article. I read your post but thought some of the comments that talked about something that you didn't write about was more interesting, so that is why I posted.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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