Monthly Archives: August 2012

Apple Ads Finally Score A Favorable Review From Macworld.Com


I love, Love LOVE this article! Finally! Someone who has brought the correct perspective to the recent Apple commercials which debuted during the Olympics.

When I first saw them, I thought they were cute and, somewhat, hilarious.

And, the fact that they were focused on the important role of the Apple Genius located in all their stores was something that we have never seen before.

However, all across the tech blogosphere, these commercials were criticized and berated because they lacked the refined ingenuity of previous Apple commercials. Aren’t we all getting just a little bit pompous and condescending here?

These commercials were never aimed for the Apple fanboys or girls. Surrounded by multiple Apple products, they don’t need to be convinced about the merits of Apple.

No – these commercials were produced to augment sales and communication in the Apple retail sector, attracting potential customers – those who, perhaps, would feel intellectually intimidated by interacting with Apple employees. Regular people with regular problems interacting with Apple staff who are more than willing to assist you in understanding your Apple project or device.

Here is what Philip Michaels of Macworld.Com had to say:

Apple isn’t making these ads to get an approving nod from Forbes or a pat on the back from Ken Segall or even to make me feel good about myself as a Mac user. It’s trying to sell stuff. Specifically, it’s trying to sell stuff to people who feel flummoxed by computers, who think that sitting down in front of a computer screen and creating something worthwhile is as unimaginable as building a rocket ship. Other PC makers leave you high and dry, Apple is telling these folks, but we’ll still be there to help you out.

Whether that message resonates with its target audience, of course, is a different question, and one we’ll see the answer to over the next few quarters. But Apple certainly has enough muscle to put some oomph behind its marketing message. The company ended its last quarter with 373 retail outlets that brought the company $4.1 billion in revenue. Around 83 million people walked into an Apple Store last quarter, and while they were there, they bought 791,000 Macs—nearly half of which were bought by consumers who had never owned a Mac before. At a time when the rest of the PC market saw contracting sales, Apple enjoyed a little bit of growth last quarter. Clearly, its retail arm helped out some in that regard, and Apple is banking that it can drive even more sales with those blue-shirted helpers.

The secret to Apple’s ongoing success and strong visibility lies within these remarkable Apple Retail Stores. It is a playground for people of all ages and, more important, all levels of technological ability. The stores via their Apple employees foster growth, appreciation and passion for technology, and in particular, Apple technology.

Steve Jobs had a vision for Apple – to create a Disney-like experience where consumers would return to time and time again. And what better place to experience the Apple magic than your nearest Apple Store.

His child-like wonder was what sustained him and allowed him to visualize a world that none of us could foresee. It is also this kind of special mind-set that catapulted Walt Disney World to success.

I actually think that we will see an Apple Store at Disneyland and Disneyworld someday soon. With Apple’s strong connection to Disney, it is a no-brainer.

When this happens, then the sky is indeed the limit for Apple. They will have a captive audience at the greatest family vacation center in the world.

Did you enjoy the recently aired Apple commercials? Please share your thoughts in the comments section.

The Future Of Cloud Storage May Become Our Worst Nightmare

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These words by Apple Co-Founder, Steve Woz, gave me pause. Not just a little pause but a great, big, scary pause.

In an article by CNET.Com, culled from Agence France-Presse, Steve Woz had this to say about the future of iCloud storage:

“I really worry about everything going to the cloud,” he said. “I think it’s going to be horrendous. I think there are going to be a lot of horrible problems in the next five years.”

He added: “With the cloud, you don’t own anything. You already signed it away” through the legalistic terms of service with a cloud provider that computer users must agree to.

“I want to feel that I own things,” Wozniak said. “A lot of people feel, ‘Oh, everything is really on my computer,’ but I say the more we transfer everything onto the web, onto the cloud, the less we’re going to have control over it.”

Okay, so I thought it was just me. My age! My unwillingness to release control of my life to something intangible.

But, I guess many people are questioning the wisdom in storing their information on some remote server that they have little to no control over.

In a perfect world, this should work and should be the answer to all our storage and curating problems.

And, with the treadmill-like pace of today’s world, we want a simple, fast and, hopefully, safe solution in which to archive our daily “stuff” – from photos, to documents, to finances, and more.

The “simple and fast” is a no-brainer with cloud service – but the “safe”? Not as much.

And truth be told, is it really that difficult to organize your routine in a way that encompasses saving your work to an external hard drive? How lazy are we becoming here? We have to take responsibility for our work and decide where and how it is stored.

Once you have added the proper folders to your external drive, it would simply be a matter of routinely saving your day’s work to the proper folder. Part of your daily regimen – like brushing your teeth or taking a shower.

And, with Time Machine and Time Capsule, you need not do a thing except make certain that the system is indeed working from time-to-time. Once, you set the back-up schedule for Time Machine, all your data is systematically backed up and ready for recovery if need be.

I think cloud back-up is great for movies and music and, perhaps, sharing some of your photos once the new PhotoStream kicks in via iOS 6 this Fall.

But, I presently use iMessage to send pictures and videos to friends and family and it works incredibly well. For others who do not have Apple devices, then email is just as good and instantaneous.

However, that being said, I would still use an external drive for permanently saving all this data, simply because it is tangible and it is yours!

And I would never (sorry, Mint.Com) store my financial data in the cloud. That is just asking for trouble.

So, the great Steve Woz has spoken. I agree with him. Do you? Let’s hear your take in the comments section.

[Review] Monsters vs Superheroes Comic Book Maker Will Provide Hours Of Comic Relief

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Hands up! Who wants to feel like a kid again? Really and truly?

Well this latest Comic Book App – Monsters And Superheroes – from the award-winning Duck Duck Moose Design should definitely do the trick.

Is it crazy to be a Golden Girl and yet be so in love with this great App for Kids? It is such a magical experience, especially when viewed through the eyes of a child.

I have been anticipating an App like this for my grandchildren – and for me, of course – for a very long time. Children love to create their own stories. And, the very fact that this App allows them to animate their characters is an absolute plus.

Here are some of the innovative features from Monsters To Superheroes Comic Book App:

Create and record your own animated comics! Put multiple scenes together to make a comic strip.

‘Monsters vs Superheroes Comic Book Maker’ includes 55 scenes and coloring pages with 170+ stickers. Splat! Ka-pow! Whizz!

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MAKE A COMIC BOOK:
– Drag and drop multiple scenes to create a comic strip
– 27 background scenes: skyscrapers, space ship, the moon, wild west, ice cave, deep sea
– 170+ animated stickers with sound effects
– 29 crayons and 29 colored pencils
– Record your voice. Move the stickers to create your own animated comic!
– Tap the stickers to make their mouths move

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COLOR:
– 28 coloring pages
– Featuring alien monsters, Super Dog, Big Foot, Captain Banana Man, Dinosaurs, Ninjas, and all kinds of fantastic superheroes and cute, fuzzy monsters.

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SHARE:
– Save your comic books to share with friends!

And, in case you need further convincing, grab a look at the video below and enjoy the entertaining ride.

The Monsters vs Superheroes Comic Book Maker is now available for the iPod Touch, iPhone and the iPad in the iOS App Store, priced at a more than reasonable $1.99.

Duck Duck Moose is an award-winning creator of educational children’s mobile applications for iOS and Android. It was founded in 2008 by three friends who are parents themselves, and share a passion for children, music, education, design, and play. Duck Duck Moose has created fourteen top-selling titles: Wheels on the Bus, Old MacDonald, Itsy Bitsy Spider, Fish School, Baa Baa Black Sheep, Park Math, Word Wagon, Musical Me!, Puzzle Pop, Peek-a-Zoo, Draw and Tell, Trucks, Princess Fairy Tale Maker, and Monsters vs Superheroes Comic Book Maker. Wheels on the Bus won the KAPi Award for “Best Children’s App” at the 2010 International CES and was featured as one of The New York Times’ “Best iPhone Apps for Kids.” Park Math won the “2010 Best Kids’ iPhone/iPod App of the Year Award” from iLounge. The Company has won eleven Parents’ Choice Awards and twelve Children’s Technology Review Editor’s Choice Awards for Excellence in Design.

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