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ATPM 13.08
August 2007




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About This Particular Upgrade

Boy, I though I was the only one who agonized over Apple hardware purchases! My last laptop was a 2003 867 15″ TiBook, a present from my wife. At $2,500, it was the most expensive gift ever given to me by anyone.

I told my wife I would have preferred a 12″ Aluminum PowerBook, but she insisted I needed this then “top of the line” laptop.

I dutifully used the TiBook for the next four years, taking it with me to Thailand to edit my digital photos and to sample the local Wi-Fi hot spots.

I knew the machine was getting long in the tooth, and I had to do something soon about it. I finally traded it in to PowerMax for a 12″ PowerBook that will eventually become my son’s computer when I buy that coveted Black MacBook early next year.

As for that iPhone, I’m firmly on the sidelines until I don’t have to give AT&T my SSN to activate the device. I trust Apple, but AT&T’s rep is a little shaky these days.

—Grover Watson

Stuffed, Eleven Years Ago

It’s in this kind of situation that virtualization (OK, emulation) comes in handy. You just have a virtualized environment in an emulator like SheepShaver or Basilisk that takes care of all your backwards compatibility needs. The downside is that you have to have licenses for the emulated software. And you somehow have to legally obtain a ROM for the emulated machine…

—Andrej Gustin

Some Perspectives on WWDC

One thing I remember about the bygone days is the sentiment that potential software developers eschewed Apple because of the perception that it wasn’t “solid” or was going to go away sometime soon. Personally, I’m glad Apple is less mercurial, more dependable, so that the ranks of developers choosing Apple can swell, perhaps even exponentially. (The old saw about building on rock vs. building on sand comes to mind.)

I think you have an outstanding column. It’s always the first one I turn to when ATPM comes out. Thanks for your valuable perspectives.

—John Miller

Dear Steve: Hurry Up and Slow Down!

You’ve already answered your own last question: you either need a mobile smartphone now or you don’t.

—Jeffree K Lassitter

• • •

It all depends on what you have now…

I had a Nokia N80 until last month. At the time, I needed a smartphone and the N80 was the bells and whistles solution I wanted, however, 11 months later my needs had changed. I didn’t want to be available 24/7, and the bulk of the N80 meant I most often left it at home and diverted all calls to my non-smart Nokia 6210 work mobile.

Last month, I dropped the cash and bought myself out of my old contract for £275 so I could upgrade to to Nokia E65, which was a smartphone small enough to carry with me and with the features I needed. Instead of diverting my personal calls to my work mobile, it’s now the other way round.

I’ve not been without a smartphone for the last four years and wouldn’t want to go back to a normal phone. I don’t have one for the on-the-move editing of office documents and being available at all hours. I have it for media, Web access, and the mobile lifestyle I want.

No more do I have the annoying conversations in the pub about what something was called or what year a single was released. I just look it up on Google via my 3G connection.

I won’t be buying the iPhone yet because it doesn’t support 3G. I never use Wi-Fi on my mobile because I have a 2 GB per month data allowance on my plan, which I never come close to hitting and it gets speeds of over 350kbps, which is more than adequate when I’m on the road. The line that 3G coverage isn’t prevalent enough yet just doesn’t wash with me—the last three mobiles I’ve had have been able to automatically switch between 2G and 3G networks as they are available without dropping calls, and although battery is lower than pure GSM, it’s something that is improving all the time.

Hopefully by the time the iPhone hits Europe, it’ll be 3G. Otherwise I’m not buying. Besides, I’ve got another ten months to use up of this contract yet.

—Kevin Smith

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