Mike Elgan2013-01-23 15:14:29
Why you'll be wearing a wristwatch again by this time next year.

People don't wear wristwatches like they used to. And the reason is clear: Since everybody's got a mobile phone, and the phone tells the time, a watch is unnecessary.

But the mobile phone has always been an insatiably greedy platform -- it needs more features, more power, more convenience and, above all, more pixels.

Get used to the idea of the big platform companies selling or supporting wristwatches that serve as additional screens for and controllers of the phones in our pockets. I believe that Apple and Google will do so, and a large number of small companies -- including Pebble (which shipped it's long-awaited smart watch today).

Five strong trends are all converging to make smartphone wristwatches a near certainty. Here are those trends:

  • 1853 plusses - 479 comments - 540 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-01-31 21:43:06
    Microsoft's Surface tablet is failing hard - report.

    Way back in October, when everyone was giddy about the Microsoft Surface RT tablet, I predicted that the iPad Mini would sell at least ten times as many units as the Microsoft Surface RT. 


    It looks like that was accurate, but an understatement. A new report from IDC says Apple shipped about 22.9 million iPads of both Mini and Maxi varieties. Various reports say that the Mini outsold the Maxi. 

    Meanwhile, Microsoft sold fewer than 1 million Surface tablets, according to IDC. 

  • 1117 plusses - 476 comments - 244 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-01-08 15:55:02
    Worst USB thumb drive ever (but perfect for shovelware!)

    These images have started flying around on Chinese and Russian social networks.

    This is easily the worst idea for a USB thumb drive ever.

  • 1560 plusses - 472 comments - 568 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-12-22 18:51:27
    Why Apple needs a really expensive iPhone.

    Some pundits are predicting, and others are advocating, that Apple launch an iPhone that's much cheaper than the current iPhone in order to keep up with Android phone sales.

    This is crazy talk.

    Apple doesn't need a cheaper iPhone. They need a more expensive one -- much more expensive. Here's why. 

  • 1928 plusses - 471 comments - 318 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-06-12 04:25:16
    Facebook resorting to ever more dirty tricks against Google+.

    Facebook has taken its cheating to a new low. 

    As you know, I auto-post Google+ posts to Facebook. The link brings my Facebook followers back to Google+ for the pictures and comments and for the complete post. 

    But now, when they click on the link, my followers get a scary "Security Alert: This Link May Not Be Safe" warning.  

    As far as I can tell, Facebook is lying. Flat-out lying as a dirty trick to reduce traffic to Google+. I can't think of any other explanation. 

    And they're apparently paying Symantec to take the blame for the lie. 

    Both companies know that a link to Google+ is perfectly safe. There are no banner ads and no way for malicious code to be downloaded from Google+. There has never, to the best of my knowledge, been a malware event originating from a Google+ link. 

    Even after you click "Ignore this warning," every single link is flagged in the same way, with no "learning" or option to accept all links from the site. 

    I wonder what +Robert Scoble thinks of this.

    Props to +Roberto Acevedo III for pointing this out to me. 
  • 1923 plusses - 471 comments - 1117 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-02-15 20:44:30
    +Gizmodo's +Leslie Horn says YOU are nobody. Show her you are somebody!

    Every once in a while, a tech writer who doesn't use Google+ confuses their own lack of use with non-activity on G+ generally, then embarrasses themselves by suggesting that Google+ is a "ghost town" or something like that. 

    Today, some Gizmodo blogger named +Leslie Horn, who hasn't posted on G+ since July of 2011 -- before it even launched publicly and who has completely missed the boat -- joked today on Gizmodo that maybe the site's outage today was due to "neglect." 

    She wrote: "If a social network falls on the internet and nobody's on it, has it actually fallen at all?"

    You hear that? She says nobody is on Google+. Are YOU nobody? Let's all go to the Gizmodo site by clicking the link below and leave a comment for Leslie. Let her know how crazy active Google+ is!!

    (Also please share and plus-one this message!)

  • 1441 plusses - 470 comments - 334 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-05-07 19:03:34
    US gun deaths way down. Most think it's gone up. Thanks, alarmist media!

    A new Pew study found US gun homicide rates have dropped by half since 1993, yet a majority of Americans think gun deaths have gone up. 

    I think that's generally true of many things -- life keeps getting safer, better and generally more awesome, yet everyone thinks it's getting worse. 

    ("Everything is amazing and nobody is happy." - Louis C.K.)

    Maybe the solution is to shoot our TVs.

  • 2393 plusses - 469 comments - 624 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-02-16 19:59:48
    Why an Apple iCar is actually a great idea.

    The New York Times’ Nick Bilton reminded everyone recently what we previously learned from longtime Apple board member Mickey Drexler: Steve Jobs wanted to build an Apple iCar.

    People tend to dismiss the idea as a goofy pipe dream. In fact, not only is an Apple iCar a great idea, it’s perfectly aligned with Apple’s history and mission.

    Here’s how they should do it.

  • 1710 plusses - 468 comments - 491 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-01-26 14:38:50
    Will Apple, Google and Samsung lose the smartphone market?

    Four Linux-based mobile OS platforms are gunning for iOS and Android. And 100 Chinese companies want to price the iPhone and the Galaxy S line out of the market.

    Is the smartphone world about to be turned upside down?

  • 1965 plusses - 468 comments - 364 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-12-31 10:11:23
    Watch the New Year unfold on Google+.

    It's 2013 already on Christmas Island -- the new year has begun! Use this search stream to watch the New Year happen around the planet: 

    1. Click here: https://plus.google.com/s/%22new%20year%22

    2. Keep this running for the next 24 hours!

    3. Click "Are you still there?" when it pops up. 
  • 2392 plusses - 468 comments - 538 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-05-02 14:31:13
    US meat supply massively contaminated with superbugs.

    Consumer Reports says 90% of US supermarket ground turkey is contaminated with superbugs -- antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

    Earlier this month, a government monitoring group found more than half of samples of ground turkey, pork chops and ground beef bought in US supermarkets contained antibiotic-resistant superbugs. 

    The contamination of the food supply with superbugs is caused by the widespread use of antibiotics in livestock to make them bigger and also enable them to survive in cramped, unhealthy conditions without dying of the diseases that spread in such an environment. 

    Bottom line: Antibiotics makes meat cheaper. But is it worth the lower price? 

  • 1071 plusses - 466 comments - 501 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-01-10 11:40:45
    Yeah, it's called the 'iPotty.'

    A special iPad-holding toilet (complete with a "splash guard" for the iPad) is designed to help toilet-train toddlers. Parents are invited to choose from the variety of toilet-training apps already available in the iOS app store. 

    In other news, there is a variety of toilet-training apps already available in the iOS app store. 

  • 2208 plusses - 466 comments - 1059 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-08-25 15:28:26
    Why Apple Sues

    Apple’s critics generously assign a variety of motives to Apple for filing lawsuits.

    Apple sues because it wants to control the market, overcharge for its products, exclude competitors from the market or punish competitors for daring to not think different. It’s all part of Apple’s quest for global tech domination.

    But these aren’t actual motives. These are appeals to emotion. They’re legitimate perspectives, but expressed to negatively encapsulate spectacularly complex technical, legal and ethical issues into sound bites that make you want to agree with the author that Apple is bad and wrong. 

    Apple has only one motive for patent lawsuits, and I’m going to tell you what that motive is: 

  • 932 plusses - 465 comments - 211 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-03-16 19:20:31
    Other phones are getting all the attention, so Apple launched a page to tell you 'Why iPhone.'

  • 542 plusses - 464 comments - 98 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-12-13 12:54:19
    Jackie Chan calls America the most corrupt country in the world. 

    Action star Jackie Chan reportedly said on a Hong Kong TV talk show that the United States is the most corrupt country in the world, far more corrupt than China. He also called on Chinese people to stop criticizing China. 

    Interestingly, Chinese Internet users pounced on Chan for acting as an apologist for Chinese corruption. One wrote: "Please, if you want to tell a good lie, tell an educated one. Go learn some knowledge before you contribute to Chinese Communist Party's corruption."

    Other commenters supported Chan's views. 

  • 968 plusses - 464 comments - 150 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-08-05 13:30:35
    Shotgun Wedding? Uh, Not Exactly.....

    I don't know the story behind this photo, but I'll bet the groom got to the church on time.

    Pic props: http://www.americancowboychronicles.com/2012/06/random-shots-judge-revokes-zimmerman.html

    Posted first on Google+ by +Tim Jones
  • 2792 plusses - 463 comments - 658 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-07-19 18:19:56
    71-year-old man shoots Internet cafe robbers. Is that good or bad?

    A surveillance video was posted on YouTube this week, showing two armed crooks (one had a bat, the other a gun) holding up an Internet cafe in Marion, Florida. A few seconds into their robbery, 71-year-old Samuel Williams pulls out a legally registered and legally carried handgun, and starts popping caps into their asses. 

    Everyone survived. The robbers were later arrested, and Williams was not charged. 

    Does this event support the idea that conceal-carry permits are a good idea, and thwart crime? 

  • 1934 plusses - 463 comments - 588 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-11-27 14:03:46
    Wait, so you're saying Kim Jong Un isn't the 'Sexiest Man Alive'?

    The online version of China's official commie rag, the People's Daily fell for an Onion story that said North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un is the "Sexiest Man Alive." 

    The People's Daily web site today ran a -- wait for it! -- 55-page photo spread as part of its coverage of Un being named "The Onion's Sexiest Man Alive for 2012."

    They even quoted +The Onion: "With his devastatingly handsome, round face, his boyish charm, and his strong, sturdy frame, this Pyongyang-bred heartthrob is every woman's dream come true."

  • 1314 plusses - 462 comments - 490 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-11-15 08:40:24
    Are people getting dumber?

    A new paper by Stanford University researcher Gerald Crabtree finds that now that humans no longer have the selective pressures of a hunter-gatherer existence, we no longer need intelligence to survive and, as a result, we're getting dumber. 

    Separate from that study, I also wonder whether a similar process is happening culturally. Are dumber people about to "survive" culturally, and remain famous and influential no matter how unintelligent they are? 

  • 1631 plusses - 462 comments - 377 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-06-20 04:02:10
    Join the effort to beam +George Takei from Facebook to Google+!

    Unless you're new to the planet, you've heard about actor +George Takei's vocal complaints against Facebook's idea to actually deliver your posts only if you pay. (Right now, Facebook secretly deletes most of the status updates you post without telling you or the people who will never see them.) 


    A growing red-shirt army of Google+ pleeps, including +Robert Partridge, +Stephanie Van Pelt, +Danial Hallock, +Sarah Rios, +Simon Skiles and others are banding together to beam the one and only +George Takei from the inhospitable Planet Facebook to the Starship Google+!

    (Too much?) 

    Here's what you can do to join the effort: 

    1. Circle +George Takei

    2. Plus-one and share this message to grow the movement. 

    3. Write a comment below in support of +George Takei dumping Facebook and moving to Google+!

  • 2359 plusses - 462 comments - 682 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-01-15 19:12:24
    This is the last picture a photographer took before telling them to 'stand just a little bit closer' to the rhino.

    They did stand closer. Then the rhino attacked, penetrating the woman's chest with its horn, breaking ribs and collapsing one of her lungs. 

    My advice: No matter what the photographer says, this is already about 100 feet too close. You don't want to $#@! with rhinos. 

  • 2001 plusses - 461 comments - 569 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-11-25 15:51:06
    How to store your phone and tablet like a boss cop.

    The $70 TechSling holster lets you stash your tablet on one side and your phone on the other, with some extra room for your wallet and papers.

    Too much?

  • 1814 plusses - 461 comments - 562 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-07-01 01:15:31
    Steve Jobs was right about Flash.

    +TechCrunch just posted a really good piece on the death of Adobe Flash on mobile, and Apple's role in killing it -- or, at least, foreseeing its death when others didn't. 

    When Steve Jobs' "epic missive" explained in devastating detail why Apple didn't support Flash on either iPhone or iPad, he divided opinion. Rivals pounced on the opportunity to differentiate by supporting Flash. 

    Five years after the iPhone shipped (Thursday), Adobe announced that its Flash Player would not support devices running Jelly Bean, essentially announcing the phase-out of Flash for mobile devices. 

    It turns out that everything Steve Jobs said about Flash was exactly right. It was just no good for mobile. 

  • 2334 plusses - 458 comments - 559 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-12-17 20:37:47
    Why I'm looking forward to the end of the world Friday.

    The world ends Friday, according to idiots. 

    I love it when this happens. The first doomsday I remember was when I was a kid -- probably in the 4th grade or so -- and some Nostradamus-inspired hysteria gripped the nation. Two or three families left the street where I lived to head to higher ground (that end of the world involved flooding of some kind). 

    Since then, every few years or so, certain kinds of people get all worked up about some historical misinformation and convince each other that the world is going to end. 

    The most recent and the best apocalypse of my lifetime was last year. Radio preacher Harold Camping said he was absolutely certain that the Bible says the world was to end May 21. After realizing that the world didn't get the memo, he retreated into prayer and reflection and came back convinced he was wrong. In fact, he said, the world would end October 11. Again, the world stubbornly refused to end.

    Camping's cult headquarters were in the Bay Area, and there were dozens of billboards all over the place promising the end of the world. It was really funny to watch them take the billboards down after October 11th. 

    That doomsday was the best because the hysteria was spread by a single man, who genuinely seem to believe his own biblical numerology. Some of his followers quit school or gave away all their money, and were left undereducated and broke after their faith-based catastrophe failed to materialize. 

    I had stumbled across Brother Camping's program many times over the years while driving around, and sometimes gave it a listen out of morbid fascination. Pretty much everything I ever heard him say was wrong or at least misguided, though he gained millions of followers all over the world. How wonderful for him to be actually proved wrong so publicly. 

    And now another end of the world is upon us. According to believers, the Mayans predicted that the world would end on December 21, 2012. 

    In reality, their calendar ended. It had to end. There isn't enough stone in the whole of Guatemala to chisel a calendar that never ends. 

    Nevertheless, the ignoramuses are coming out in force. 

    The Chinese government has arrested nearly 100 people for spreading rumors about the Mayan apocalypse. (That nutjob who knifed 23 school-children in China last week was reportedly "influenced" by the doomsday.) 

    Russians are buying up all the candles, matches, salt and torches to ward off the end somehow. 

    People all over the world are buying or building bunkers or survival pods. 

    And, of course, Twitter won't shut up about it: http://goo.gl/pw7gB

    The reason I love the end of the world so much is this: People preach stupid, ignorant, emotional, ill-informed nonsense all the time, and you can never convince them otherwise. You can argue, persuade, use logic -- nothing works. 

    But in this one case, the small-minded, superstitious, anti-science, demon-haunted world believers actually get proved totally and utterly wrong, and even they have to accept it. 

    So point and laugh at the believers. Make the most of it. The end of the world only happens every few years, on average. 

    I always look forward to the next apocalypse, and I've been looking forward to the Mayan end of the world for a long time. 

    Thank God it's Friday. 





    (Pic props to the Mayans for this irrefutable proof that the world will end Friday.)
  • 1043 plusses - 457 comments - 235 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-11-07 08:24:32
    Donald Trump calls on Twitter for a revolution to overthrow the government.

    He quickly deleted the tweet; but not before +Wil Wheaton saved it. 

  • 556 plusses - 456 comments - 140 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-08-07 10:22:41
    Dad Mods Kid's Electric Car Into Speed Demon

    A kid named Evan may be the luckiest boy in the world. His Dad modded his old pokey Lightning McQueen Powerwheel, getting rid of the plastic wheels and installing metal rims and rubber off-road tires, as well as "dual sealed gel batteries with an output of 24 volts, a 500 watt .66 horsepower electric motor, disk brake, throttle modulated variable speed control with reverse and sparco battery cut off switch," according to the YouTube blurb.


    Posted first on Google+ by +Paul Huckabee 
  • 2045 plusses - 456 comments - 722 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-08-22 11:33:05
    Worst Design Ever for a Power Screwdriver? Or Best?

    The $40 Drill Gun Power Screwdriver is shaped like a snub-nosed revolver handgun. Is that cool? Or dumb?

  • 1749 plusses - 453 comments - 410 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-06-25 22:33:51
    Why your coffee table will become the most important (and most expensive) piece of furniture in your house.

    Today, coffee tables are almost an afterthought in the home design decision-making process. But soon, they'll become multi-touch supercomputers that control everything else in the house.


    Follow me on Houzz: http://www.houzz.com/user/mikelgan
  • 3328 plusses - 453 comments - 1130 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-12-24 11:29:44
    The bacon people must be stopped.
  • 1433 plusses - 452 comments - 432 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-01-07 18:18:04
    If you had to choose, would you choose Twitter, Facebook or Google+?

    Social Media Insider is running an online poll asking: If you could use only one, would you choose Twitter, Facebook, or Google+?


    (Also please share this post with your circles!)
  • 1832 plusses - 451 comments - 811 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-08-17 12:00:05
    Why Progressive Insurance Is About to be Crushed by the Internet

    Long story short: The sister of a blogger named Matt Fisher was tragically killed in a car accident. She had Progressive insurance "protecting her" against accident by an underinsured driver, which happened to be the case in this accident.


    The family said that because the other insurance company paid only $25k, Progressive owed $75k to make up the difference, as they were contractually obligated to do. But instead of paying, they instead worked closely with opposing lawyers to help them prove the accident was her fault, so they could get out of paying. 

    Now famous bloggers like Seth Godin are jumping in to publicly shame Progressive.


    More context: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/08/18/your-money/progressives-side-of-the-insurance-case-that-blew-up-on-the-internet.html
  • 1812 plusses - 451 comments - 701 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-07-09 03:07:24
    Brazil to release genetically modified mosquitos into the wild. What could go wrong?

    Brazil plans to release specially engineered genetically modified mosquitos to reduce dengue. The GMO bugs are injected with viruses that kill mosquito larvae before they're born. 

    A Brazilian lab plans to breed 4 million mosquitos a year. 

    What could go wrong? (Or, is this a great idea?)

  • 1463 plusses - 451 comments - 728 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-02-10 20:37:42
    Report: Apple is working on a wristwatch.

    I've been talking about my expectation that Apple would release a wristwatch for a long time (see the links below). Now, a new report in The New York Times says the company is doing exactly that. The report said, in part: 

    "In its headquarters in Cupertino, Calif., Apple is experimenting with wristwatch-like devices made of curved glass, according to people familiar with the company’s explorations."

    (The picture on this post is not the watch -- it's a concept dreamed up by a user.) 






    (Props: http://www.cultofmac.com/215198/apple-working-on-iwatch-with-curved-glass-display-report/ )

    _(Pic props to Yrving Torrealba: http://www.kontain.com/irv1ng/entries/64830/iphone-wrist/)_
  • 3150 plusses - 450 comments - 950 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-06-09 22:25:32
    Why does Apple inspire so much hate?

    The lovefest known as the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference starts Monday. As with any such event that involves Apple announcing new products, the global outpouring of love will be matched by a rising outburst of hate.

    Some people hate Apple. Other people hate people who hate Apple. Many of these haters have turned pro, leading to a lucrative “hater industrial complex.”

    I know, because I’ve been the target of hate from both sides. I’m on the hate list of both the most extreme anti-Apple haters and pro-Apple haters.

    Passion in technology, flame-wars, fanboyism and its discontents are nothing new. But in the past couple of years, something new has happened: The loudest, most insistent hate is now coming from the anti-Apple crowd, rather than the pro-Apple people.

    Here's why Apple inspires so much hate: 

  • 2452 plusses - 450 comments - 671 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-01-04 13:47:53
    Facebook still owns your personal photos and information even after you delete your account.

    The truth is that nearly all users have no idea what they're legally agreeing to when they sign up for social networks. 

    The UK's Telegraph has a nice, super simple summary of some aspects of each network's terms of service. 

    For example, Facebook's 14,000-word terms of service gives Facebook the legal right to "use your content in any way it sees fit... Facebook can transfer or sub-license its rights over a user’s content to another company or organisation if needed. Facebook’s license does not end upon the deactivation or deletion of a user’s account."

  • 1434 plusses - 449 comments - 663 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-12-19 12:47:48
  • 1127 plusses - 449 comments - 113 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-11-28 20:56:04
    Is this iPhone 5 case worth $200?

    It's tactical! And it has an anti-glare privacy screen overlay, and other features. But is it worth the money?

  • 1012 plusses - 449 comments - 212 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-07-25 13:56:15
    Greek triple jumper cut from Olympic team over tweets.

    Greek triple jumper Voula Papachristau has been removed from the Greek Olympic team for alleged anti-foreigner tweets. 

    As far as I can tell, the action was taken based on the following joke: 

    "With so many Africans in Greece .. At least the mosquitoes of West Nile .. will eat homemade food!"

    And also with the re-tweeting of the following tweet by someone else: 

    "Samaras (Greece's new conservative prime minister) will drive out the foreigners, will be declared EEZ, will capture the hooded and then wake up..."

    Papachristau has since apologized repeatedly, and issued the following statement: http://www.twitlonger.com/show/ih3mcp

    Her Twitter feed is still up: https://twitter.com/papaxristoutj

    What do you think? Should she have been kicked off the team? 

  • 602 plusses - 449 comments - 133 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-06-14 07:14:56
    Jesus: Nokia to cut 10,000 jobs.

    Long story short: Apple and Google are killing Nokia. The company is bleeding cash and can't compete. Now they're axing employees by the thousands. 

    In hindsight, maybe Microsoft Windows Phone wasn't the solution...

  • 1036 plusses - 449 comments - 394 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-06-04 19:18:14
    The Chinese government celebrates the Tiananmen Massacre by censoring all mention of it.

    In the days leading up to the anniversary, the Chinese government is stepping up the censorship of social media, banning words like "tank" and "never forget." They've even forced the Chinese Twitter (Sina Weibo) and other sites from allowing users to change their profile pictures, lest they upload a picture of a candle or something.

    I'd love to hear from my Chinese friends: What do Chinese people really talk about when discussing Tiananmen?


    (Pic props: http://onlyhdwallpapers.com/world/lego-china-riot-tanks-protest-tiananmen-square-photos-photo-reconstruction-desktop-1400x990-wallpaper-290989 )
  • 1604 plusses - 449 comments - 467 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-08-16 11:28:20
    Should Facebook be Nationalized?

    Facebook has become a "public good" and an "important social resource" for research and other things, according to Philip N. Howard writing in +Slate

    Meanwhile, the company is "behaving badly" towards users and its future existence is uncertain. 

    So maybe it should be nationalized, according to Howard -- taken over by the government and run as a government service like the US Postal Service is. 


    (Pic props: http://jakemiller.me/the-facebook-id/ )
  • 474 plusses - 447 comments - 157 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-07-12 14:01:55
    Stun gun iPhone case adds 20 hours of battery life!

    A new iPhone case called the Yellow Jacket delivers 650k volts of stun gun juice -- and 20 hours of juice to your iPhone. 

    Just don't zap yourself in the head while you're talking on the phone. 

  • 1327 plusses - 447 comments - 556 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-01-20 17:14:25
    Is Apple really failing?

    Apple has “stumbled lately.” That’s the overwhelming consensus coming from the press, blogosphere and Wall Street recently.

    Demand for the iPad and iPhone is dropping, we’re told, and Apple isn’t doing interesting or exciting things anymore.

    Here’s my column on what’s going on:

  • 1684 plusses - 446 comments - 280 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-12-29 17:57:02
    What If the Next iPad, iMac, Business PC and Apple TV Are All One Device?

    How would you radically improve the iPad? You’d give it more powerful processing, enabling more powerful apps.

    How would you improve the 27-inch iMac? You’d make it 37 inches.

    How would you create an Apple desktop computer for business? You’d make it work like an iPad, but double as a boardroom device for presentations and video conferencing.

    And how would you improve TV and make it Applish? You’d build in a computer, Apple TV-like functions and give it a remote.

    If you think about it, these obvious improvements are not moving these four product lines away from each other, but toward each other — resulting in a single super product that does it all.

    What if Apple’s next iPad, iMac, business PC and TV set are all one iDevice?

  • 1374 plusses - 446 comments - 243 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-10-27 22:50:38
    What if Google made WiFi routers?

    One of the great things about Google is that their goal is to get people to use the Internet more. http://goo.gl/8kV0kJ

    A better Internet that I use more is my goal, too — and yours. So there’s an alignment of interests with Google that makes them a user-friendly company, generally speaking.

    Google wants people to use the Internet so badly that they are actually digging trenches and laying fiber citywide in multiple cities. They pay the wireless bills for some users in the third world (as long as they’re using Google services). And that’s ultimately why they sell Chromebooks and give away Android.

    It’s all about getting people to exchange more bits with the Internet.

    However, there’s another project Google could do that would literally enable hundreds of millions of people to “use the Internet more.”


    (Photo courtesy of Ruckus Wireless)
  • 4580 plusses - 445 comments - 549 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-05-01 16:13:23
    MYSTERY PIC: What is it?
  • 470 plusses - 445 comments - 179 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-06-21 05:38:58
    Don't blame the kids for the Karen Huff Klein incident.

    Everyone is outraged about a video that surfaced showing a busload of kids viciously abusing a bus monitor. (Note, this is a truly upsetting video, so please view with caution.) 

    Everyone is piling on the kids, and soon, the parents of those kids. And, yes, the kids are rotten and should face some kind of reckoning. 

    Scenes like this are, in fact, very common. It's only when someone happens to record video that everyone gets upset. 

    The core problem, in my opinion, is that we have industrialized education. As a result, we're placing children in cultural situations for which they have not been designed. 

    Humans are designed to live in small groups or villages with close-nit community members and family members of all ages. In nearly every human society since the beginning of time, say, a 12-year-old would rarely find himself or herself in a situation with a lot of other 12-year olds. Humans are designed to exist in groups of multiple ages. A young person would always be within the reach of grandparents, friends of the family, neighbors. 

    But in modern society, we've industrialized education. Public schools are factories for mass-producing workers. 

    By the time they are adults, children have spent the majority of their socializing time with groups of people primarily consisting of others their own age. The 12-year-olds in this video exist in a cultural context similar to Lord of the Flies -- devoid of non-12-year-olds. 

    As a result, a kind of social insanity has become normal. Like monkeys in a zoo (an unnatural environment), public school children live in a social context that their brains are not wired to understand or comprehend. 

    We understand that grown adults sent to govern our nation require "checks and balances" -- with each group watching the others. Why don't we think middle school students need them? 

    Many people will recall that decades ago, schools were similarly industrialized and routinized, but scenes like the one in the video below were unheard of. 

    The reason kids were "better behaved" in the past is that they lived always under the threat of the larger society of parents, older kids, grand parents, younger kids. What's changed is the amount of time that kids spend in their artificial peer group.

    With social media and cell phones, kids are still psychologically "with" peers of their own age, even when in real life they're physically in the same room with people of other ages. 

    I don't know what the solution is. But it's not more punishment for the kids. Our educational system is fundamentally broken, and we're churning out more pathological douchebags than we are Rhodes Scholars and functional citizens. 

    That's what I think. What do you think? 

  • 878 plusses - 444 comments - 432 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-07-03 05:14:30
    German police won't let man drive his Flintstones car.

    German police have decided that Sebastian Trager's Flintstone mobile is too unsafe for public roads.

    Too bad. He could have had a gay old time in this car. 


  • 2448 plusses - 443 comments - 679 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-07-09 21:32:46
    Is Google+ becoming a hostile place for Apple customers? Should it be?

    I'm worried about Google+. 

    The hostility on Google+ toward Apple and users of Apple products is growing dangerously shrill. I fear the quantity and intensity of anti-Apple sentiment may silence and ultimately drive away Apple users, who represent hundreds of millions of people.

    Apple users are routinely and overwhelmingly referred to on Google+ as "sheep" and "idiots." The choice of which phone to buy is increasingly presented as a moral issue, taking on puritanical religious overtones. 

    Should Google+ be a mainstream social network where everyone feels welcome? Or should it be just a narrow-interest social network only for the most hardcore Apple-hating Android fans? 

    Should Google+ be the superior alternative to Facebook -- the best social network for everybody? Or should it become the Google alternative to Ping -- the narrow, company-specific and irrelevant network only for the most die-hard fanboys? 
  • 449 plusses - 442 comments - 127 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-12-06 19:00:14
    Now there's a TV show about bacon.

    A TV show called "The United States of Bacon" premiers December 30 on the Destination America channel. 

    It's about a guy who travels around the country to try different kinds of bacon.

    Does this sound like salty, greasy good fun to you, or yet another descent into the portrayal of consumerist gluttony as a harmless pursuit in the midst of an obesity-driven health crisis? 

  • 1039 plusses - 441 comments - 377 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-07-03 14:55:14
    Genetic engineers tell why GMO foods are unsafe.

    It should bother everyone that nearly all the science conducted on GMO foods is done by companies that sell it.

    Recently, two genetic engineers who oppose GMO foods issued a report called GMO Myths and Truths in which they refute claims that GMO foods are safe.

    Here's a summary: http://earthopensource.org/index.php/news/60-why-genetically-engineered-food-is-dangerous-new-report-by-genetic-engineers

    Here's the full report: http://earthopensource.org/files/pdfs/GMO_Myths_and_Truths/GMO_Myths_and_Truths_1.3.pdf

    California is getting ready to vote this year on a proposition to require the labeling of GMO foods. The industry doesn't want you to know which foods are GMO, and they're going to spend a fortune to prevent you from knowing. 

  • 1491 plusses - 441 comments - 703 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-11-07 20:56:24
    What the next four years is going to do to the president.

    Bloomberg BusinessWeek has done some unhelpful Photoshop aging of President Obama, predicting what the ravages of presidential stress will do to the First Face over the next four years. 


  • 1068 plusses - 438 comments - 226 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-04-20 22:09:11
    It’s time to kill the ‘Apple doesn’t innovate’ argument.

    There’s an argument in the platform wars, and also on Wall Street, that goes something like this: “Apple doesn’t innovate anymore. It moves too slowly, and is being taken over by more nimble, more innovative rivals.”

    Any success Apple has is the result of slick marketing, rather than the newest technology. But now, Apple is a laggard and is being overtaken by more nimble companies.

    For Apple haters, this argument feels good to make. Unfortunately, it fails the test of fact and reason. Here’s why.

  • 357 plusses - 436 comments - 64 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-12-15 11:35:39
    Who's ready for a smartphone-controlled toilet?

    A Japanese company called INAX is working on a $4,500 Bluetooth-enabled INAX Satis model toilet you control with your smartphone.

    Their MySatis Android app (and in the future, an iOS app) gives you the power to rise or lower the toilet set or turn on the bidet feature. It even has built-in speakers that play music streamed from your phone.

    The toilet is expected to make a big splash when it drops in February, 2013.

    Who wants one? 

  • 1840 plusses - 435 comments - 534 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-02-10 13:56:05
    The Supreme Court to decide if it's legal for a farmer to buy seeds and plant them.

    A farmer named Hugh Bowman bought soybean seeds not from the seed store but from the feed store -- soybeans being sold for feeding to livestock. He planted them.

    Most of those feed soybeans were GMOs created by Monsanto. So Monsanto sued Bowman, saying they own the DNA in those soybeans, and therefore can tell farmers like Bowman what to do with the soybeans they buy.

    To over-simplify, farmer Bowman's argument is that when he buys something, he should have the right to do whatever he wants with it.

    Monsanto's argument is that when Bowman plants seeds developed by Monsanto, he is making an illegal copy of their invention.

    The case is headed for the Supreme Court later this month.

    What's YOUR opinion?


    UPDATE #1: Supreme court rules in favor of Monsanto. (May 14, 2013)

    The Supreme court ruled in the case this week in favor of Monsanto. They agreed with Monsanto's position that their patented GMO seeds are an "invention" and when a farmer plants them they are copying Monsanto's intellectual property and therefor may only do so according Monsanto's contract (which requires that new seeds be purchased for each planting). 

    They ruled that their decision affects only this case and not other "self-replicating products." 

  • 687 plusses - 434 comments - 446 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-07-18 20:32:25
    Is Facebook toast?

    It’s been an "septimana horribilis" (horrible week) for social networking giant Facebook.

    First, Facebook got its keister handed to it by Google+in a customer satisfaction survey. Then another report showed that Facebook is bleeding users.

    This isn’t the end of the world for Facebook. There’s still hope for the company. But a radical shift is needed now to stop Facebook from declining into irrelevancy.

  • 1581 plusses - 433 comments - 386 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-06-04 17:53:24
    Don't look now, but here comes 'Captain China'!

    The first "Captain China" comic book has now become available as a Kindle book.

    The Amazon site says "Captain China" is "a propaganda-styled comic series aimed at capturing the main-stream consciousness of China. The stories will reflect and give insight to China’s current political stance, social environment, and cultural differences by blending complex characters, historical information, geographic locations, comic satire, and over-the-top explosive action!"

    In the comic, "Captain China" is last surviving member of a band of communist superheroes created by Mao during the Great Leap Forward (the catastrophic communist experiment that killed tens of millions of Chinese people), but has been in a cryogenic sleep (like Austin Powers) for 50 years.

    In the first edition, "Captain China" wakes up from a 50 years' sleep and saves US President Barack Obama's life during a visit to China.

  • 843 plusses - 433 comments - 510 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-02-15 23:23:01
    Facebook not only paid zero taxes for 2012 -- they were actually paid money by the government -- i.e., your tax dollars!

    According to this article on AllFacebook.com, Facebook not only paid zero taxes for the 2012 tax year, they were given $429 million in net tax refunds. 

    That's right: You paid more taxes than Facebook did, and some of your taxes went to Facebook!

  • 965 plusses - 432 comments - 446 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-08-26 18:33:08
    McDonald's Selling Lamb Burgers In Australia

    What's next? Kangaroo nuggets?
  • 1025 plusses - 432 comments - 292 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-06-24 21:10:51
    Something for the bucket list: to land an airplane at India's Agatti Aerodrome!

  • 2756 plusses - 432 comments - 799 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-01-28 17:46:22
    Here's the sad monkey Iran shot into space.

    Why would they publish this photo? This photo does not advance the cause of Iranian prestige in space.

  • 516 plusses - 431 comments - 143 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-07-07 19:04:47
    Why the ‘Boycott Apple’ movement is dumb.

    The #BoycottApple hashtag was trending hard on Google+ last week. The call to boycott is based on Apple’s attempts to ban both the Samsung Galaxy Nexus phone and the Galaxy 10.1 tablet. 

    Here’s why the call for a boycott is misguided and futile: 


    (Pic props to +Phlash Tha)
  • 1153 plusses - 428 comments - 372 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-08-03 22:41:11
    +AllThingsD shows Apple's case against Samsung in three pictures.

    In a nutshell, Apple is showing the court that after Apple shipped the iPhone and iPad, Samsung's phones and tablets went from looking nothing like the Apple products to looking very much like them. 

  • 609 plusses - 427 comments - 189 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-06-08 15:12:59
    Now Samsung is suing Australian patent commissioner over Apple patent!

    Who says Samsung isn't innovative? The company has come up with a novel approach to its patent war with Apple in Australia: They're suing Australia.

    Specifically, they're suing the Australian Patent Commissioner, saying that four Apple patents should never have been granted, as they duplicate earlier patents, according to Samsung.

  • 2231 plusses - 425 comments - 766 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-07-30 20:24:11
    Advertiser leaving Facebook after discovering that 80% of the clicks they're paying for are from 'bots.'

    A company called Limited Run publicly announced on Facebook that they're leaving Facebook, and for two reasons:

    First, they did their own analytics and found that 80% of the clicks Facebook was charging them for were from automated "bots."

    Second, the company changed their name. They requested that Facebook change the company name on the business page. But Facebook told them (allegedly) that in order to change their name on Facebook, they would have to spend $2,000 more per month on advertising.

    If these allegations are true, how widespread is this abuse?

  • 2625 plusses - 422 comments - 1292 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-07-13 16:45:53
    Worst iPhone case ever: the Hana Silicon iPhone case!

    A new $13 iPhone case has a nose with nostrils you can put your fingers into. Why? Just why. 


    Posted first on Google+ by +Ralph Peralta
  • 1672 plusses - 418 comments - 650 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-11-04 23:09:35
    I'm sure the irony of an ice cream sandwich case for the iPhone 5 isn't lost on this crowd.

    $18.99 on Etsy.

  • 2180 plusses - 410 comments - 337 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-08-11 22:33:02
    Saudi Arabia to Build City for Women Only

    The Saudi Arabian government has finally figured out a way to allow women to move around freely and have careers without violating their unique interpretation of Sharia law -- ban all men.

    The plan is to build a city where men are not allowed.

    Construction begins next year. The city is reportedly expected to create 5,000 jobs in various industries, where all the employees will be women.





    (Pic props: http://www.ibtimes.com/articles/267161/20111214/saudi-woman-beheaded-witchcraft-sorcery.htm )
  • 831 plusses - 408 comments - 401 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-08-15 18:15:11
    Hand-Painted Xbox 360 Controller Bra HIts

    Sadly, it's non functional. But imagine if it actually worked as an Xbox controller!


  • 2715 plusses - 405 comments - 849 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-07-19 21:44:25
    Microsoft's stock lost $32 billion in value today.

    Microsoft's stock dropped 11 percent today in the wake of a disastrous earnings report yesterday. 

    The drop puts Microsoft's market value at $261 billion, down from a record high of $616.3 billion in December of 1999 (one month before current CEO Steve Ballmer took over). 

  • 981 plusses - 402 comments - 387 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-04-10 13:35:35
    Google+ dominates poll despite stacked deck!

    Lifehacker is running a poll, asking "What’s Your Social Network of Choice?"

    But they give Facebook and Twitter an unfair advantage: At the bottom are "Like" buttons for Facebook and Twitter. They're giving a tool to virally promote the poll on two of the social networks, but not the others. As a result, Facebook and Twitter have WAY more votes than Linkedin, Pinterest, MySpace and Instagram.

    But Google+ is dominating the poll anyway, with (at the time I write this) twice as many votes as Facebook.

    That's not enough.

    Since Lifehacker decided to favor Facebook and Twitter, let's send them some Google+ love in the form of MASSIVE votes for Google+:

    1. Share this post with all your circles.

    2. Go here and vote for your social network of choice:


    (Props to +Jeff Schultz)
  • 2096 plusses - 402 comments - 1167 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-08-14 19:40:28
    Interactive Panorama of Mars Built Out of Curiosity Pictures

    A Google+ user named +Andrew Bodrov skillfully stitched together a large number of pictures taken by the Curiosity rover on Mars. The result is this interactive panorama, which lets you look around the red planet, and even zoom in on details. 

    How cool is this? 

  • 1812 plusses - 393 comments - 581 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-01-11 16:27:07
    Facebook charges you $100 to send a message on Facebook to a famous person.

    If you're sending a message to a random person on Facebook, they'll charge you $1 to skip the spam filter and actually have the email delivered into the inbox.

    But if the recipient has a lot of followers, Facebook will charge you $100.

    Facebook says they're just testing the service to see if they can get away with it.

    No, the recipient doesn't get a penny. The recipient gets the spam and Facebook gets the money.
  • 730 plusses - 392 comments - 329 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-06-09 18:14:04
    Why I suspect China of leaking Prism.

    Did the Prism presentation leak at exactly the perfect moment for maximum benefit for the Chinese government, or was that just an amazing coincidence?

    Momentum and moral outrage about Chinese government hacking has been building up for years. Finally, this weekend, President Obama was scheduled to call China's new President President Xi Jinping (shee jihn-peeng) out on the carpet, take him to the woodshed and do other cliches to him about China's intense hacking.

    But after years of being kept secret, facts about the Prism program leaked just days before Obama was going to lecture Xi on hacking, which resulted in domestic US outrage over Prismgate reaching a crescendo just as the leaders met.

    Whenever China is accused of hacking, they always deny it, and follow the denial up with the charge that the US is the world's biggest hacker.

    Everybody assumes that China knew about Prism (one benefit of all that hacking). If they didn't leak it in order to undermine Obama's moral authority and political juice, why didn't they? It all turned out beautifully for China.

    The error on Obama's part was to emphasize hacking, rather than IP theft. On the accusation of government hacking to steal trade secrets, the US does have the moral high ground. But on the area of "hacking"? Forget it. The US government probably IS the world's biggest hacker.

    UPDATE #1: The "whistleblower" who uncovered all this fled to China, and says he expects to never return.


    (Pic props to _ _ _ +Dan Gillmor _ _ _ and Nerdcore: _http://www.crackajack.de/2013/06/08/i-fixed-shepard-faires-obama-poster-to-fit-prism-also-happy-64th-george-orwells-1984/__ )_
  • 1863 plusses - 388 comments - 749 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-08-26 14:43:15
    Samsung Copied Apple and That's Why It Succeeded - Pundits

    Apple fans say Samsung copied Apple and that's why Samsung is a loser.

    Android fans say Samsung didn't copy Apple any more than Apple copied Samsung, and that Samsung is a winner.

    But at least two pundits, +Farhad Manjoo  and +Robert Scoble, have an alternative opinion. Namely, that Samsung did in fact copy Apple and that's why Samsung is a winner.

    These guys point out that the companies that didn't copy Apple (Nokia, RIM, Palm, Microsoft and so on) have become smartphone market also-rans.

    Samsung, they argued, copied Apple. And while it cost them a billion dollars in "damages," that's lunch money compared to how much they're making quarter over quarter with their smart phones. 

    (Manjoo points out that Samsung started out copying, but has evolved away from that and now innovates.)

    What do you think? Is this the right view? Was copying Apple the winning strategy?



    (Scoble pic props to +Guy Kawasaki: http://www.guykawasaki.com/enchantment/pictures/ )

    (Manjoo pic props to +New America Foundation:  http://www.flickr.com/photos/newamerica/6198178475/ )
  • 495 plusses - 388 comments - 93 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-05-10 22:56:02
    Man implants magnets into his wrist to hold his iPod nano.

    A guy named Dave Huban drilled holes into his wrist and installed magnets to hold his iPod nano. He calls it the iDermal, rather than the iDumb, for some reason.

    Here comes the video: http://www.cultofmac.com/166352/this-guy-got-4-magnets-implanted-in-his-wrist-to-hold-his-ipod-nano-video/

    Posted first on Google+ by +David Zappala
  • 547 plusses - 388 comments - 294 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-03-22 22:53:08
    How does this picture make you feel?

    Is this what has become of mealtime "conversation"?
  • 461 plusses - 386 comments - 96 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-08-24 20:03:30
    Another New Bridge Collapses In China

    A 330-foot section of the Yangmingtan Bridge ramp in the city of Harbin, China, collapsed today, killing three people.

    The bridge was part of China's economic stimulus program, and involved "heavy debt" and rapid construction. It was completed less than a year ago. 

    The Xinhua news agency reported that the Yangmingtan Bridge was the sixth major bridge in China to collapse in the past year.

    Chinese officials blame overloaded trucks for all the bridge collapses. 

  • 570 plusses - 385 comments - 215 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-02-08 20:42:06
    Why China may not be the world's factory for much longer.

    Because robots can do this. (And, no, the video is not sped up.)

  • 1434 plusses - 383 comments - 604 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-12-07 16:59:31
    Why are US media ignoring GMO mosquitos in Florida?

    Officials in Florida intend to release hundreds of thousands of genetically modified mosquitoes as soon as they get permission from the federal government. The mosquitoes are (literally) designed to reduce dengue fever in Key West. 

    The mosquitos have been engineered by the British company Oxitec to pass along a birth defect that kills their offspring before they can reproduce, thus reducing mosquito populations.

    The initiative carries all the normal controversy over GMO anything -- some fearing ignorant meddling with nature and the unintended consequences that could result, and others believing that genetic modification is better than, in this case, the horrible consequences of dengue fever. 

    What's interesting to me is that the story is being covered heavily by media in Canada, India, Russia, the UK and elsewhere, but coverage is practically non-existant in the US press, except for the New York Times, a couple of Florida papers and a smattering of natural-foods hippy blogs and rags. 

    WTF is the matter with the media in the US?

  • 833 plusses - 382 comments - 287 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-03-10 19:39:59
    Saudi Arabia may stop beheading because it's barbaric and medieval because of a swordsmen shortage.

    A report on Ahram Online, which of course may be (Ahram!) misleading, a Saudi Arabian government committee may recommend switching from beheading criminals (who rape, kill or think for themselves) to instead killing them by firing squad. 

    In a statement, the committee reportedly said: "This solution seems practical, especially in light of shortages in official swordsmen or their belated arrival to execution yards in some incidents; the aim is to avoid interruption of the regularly-taken security arrangements." 

  • 483 plusses - 381 comments - 79 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-11-28 11:54:08
    Worst keyboard concept ever? Or best?

    Do you eat at your desk? (Oh, shut up -- you know you do!) If so, maybe you need Dutch designer Hella Jongerius' keyboard concept, which has a plate right in the middle where your face is as you hunch over your keyboard and eat junk food.

  • 1019 plusses - 380 comments - 372 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-05-24 16:50:47
    Laptop stickers are stupid.

    I'm setting up a Samsung Windows laptop for my son, and, as I have done dozens of times before, I'm spending 10 or 15 minutes removing the stickers that Microsoft and Intel require their OEM partners to blight their hardware with.

    These stickers are stupid.

    Samsung and other companies actually design and build some really good-looking hardware. But then these garish, ugly, sloppily applied, visually annoying stickers are right there destroying the aesthetic of the hardware, and killing the out-of-box experience.

    I know, it's a small thing. But it's also a symbolic thing.

    As a consumer, the stickers tell me that the coalition of companies that contributed to the product are incapable of working together even on small details to improve my user experience. It tells me they have no respect for their own product. It tells me they don't appreciate aesthetics. It tells me they're stupid.

    The strangest thing about it is that the stupidity exists solely to tell me exactly who is so stupid.

    OK, so Intel: You're stupid. And Microsoft: You're stupid. It says so, right there on my laptop.

    Apple is trying to take over the market in large measure through aesthetically pleasing hardware and great out-of-box experience, and you're too stupid to even do the simplest and cheapest thing imaginable to compete in these areas.


    (Pic props: http://www.flickr.com/photos/pchow98/5895034009/ )
  • 898 plusses - 372 comments - 142 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-05-05 14:59:47
    Dispatch from the 'geeks vs noobs' culture war.

    If you scratch the surface of many recurring online debates and differences of opinion -- the PC vs. Mac, Android vs. iPhone and Google+ vs. Facebook conflicts, as well as arguments over issues like privacy -- you'll find that it's often really a culture-war argument between geeks and noobs.

    Here's what I'm talking about:


    (Pic props: http://www.joyoftech.com/joyoftech/ )
  • 1294 plusses - 372 comments - 451 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-02-03 23:53:09
    Here's the Internet-only version of that Go Daddy ad.
  • 732 plusses - 371 comments - 171 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-08-03 06:30:28
    Surprising things about America.

    This American Life interviewed immigrants on what surprised them when they came to the United States. 

    Here's what surprised them: 

    * Insanely well stocked supermarkets with an impossible variety of foods
    * Flag obsession
    * Religiosity
    * No haggling over prices
    * Fake food everywhere, and in huge portions
    * Amazing culture of convenience
    * Poverty
    * People who obey traffic laws
    * Young people don't get a new boyfriend/girlfriend every week like on TV
    * Americans don't hate their own families like they do on TV

  • 1202 plusses - 366 comments - 386 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-08-21 13:16:40
    No, Apple Is NOT the Most Valuable Company Ever

    Just about every major news outlet this week has been reporting that Apple is the most valuable company in history. But this is true only if you fail to adjust for inflation.

    Microsoft holds the record for the highest valuation of any company in history. In 1999, Microsoft was worth $620.6 billion which, when adjusted for inflation, is $856 billion in today's money. 

    So please stop being dumb, media.


    UPDATE: This post has been updated to correct an error in the post I linked to, which itself has been corrected.
  • 1843 plusses - 365 comments - 445 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-06-15 05:07:41
    Wow! Microsoft to make its own tablets!

    +AllThingsD's +Ina Fried reports that Microsoft will announce Monday that it's making its own Windows 8 tablet hardware! 

  • 680 plusses - 365 comments - 219 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-05-07 18:23:33
    If you dug a hole to the other side of the Earth, where would you come out?

    The Antipodes Map, a Google Maps mash-up, will tell you!

    I would come out in the middle of the Indian Ocean off the South-Eastern coast of Africa.

  • 897 plusses - 365 comments - 605 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-12-01 02:42:19
    BREAKING: 'Fast and the Furious' star Paul Walker dies in car accident.

  • 1263 plusses - 363 comments - 278 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-01-05 21:43:40
    Why Apple should stop making iOS apps.

    When you open a new iPhone and boot it up for the first time, you’ll notice that Apple has already installed a bunch of apps for you.

    It’s a great idea, because it lets you use apps right out of the box. Even the newest, most confused user can tap on an app icon and start trying various things.

    Here’s the problem: Most users don’t replace the default apps with third-party alternatives. They mostly use the apps that came with the phone.

    And this is why Apple should stop making apps: The default Apple-made apps are giving iPhone users a second-rate experience.

  • 876 plusses - 363 comments - 126 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-08-08 19:59:02
    How the Olympic Committee Violates the Fundamental Human Rights of Athletes

    The International Olympic Committee (IOC), drunk with greed and power, is forcing athletes to cover tattoos, remove headphones, take off wristwatches and generally stop showing any corporate logo of any company that isn't an Olympic sponsor.

    For example, the committee is currently investigating whether it will allow Jamaican sprinter Yohan Blake (pictured) to continue to wear his own wristwatch during the games, as the watch maker is not a sponsor.

    The IOC required Team USA's track star Nick Symmonds to cover a temporary tattoo on his arm, because it showed the Twitter name of one of his sponsors.

    Dr. Dre sent free Beats headphones to some athletes. When a few people on the Great Britain team mentioned it, the IOC "sanctioned" them, and ordered them to wear the headphones provided by official sponsors.

    They also sanctioned Australian swimmer Libby Trickett for exercising her right to free speech in a Twitter post, in which she promoted a company sponsoring her.

    The IOC justifies this crackdown by citing Rule 40 of the IOC charter.

    You like rules and charters? I've got one for you, IOC. It's called Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which specifies that "Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers."

    Yes, I know athletes agree to your shameless rules, which are designed to extract the maximum amount of money from mostly unpaid athletes. But they suck, and your enforcement of them is ridiculous and extreme.


  • 1114 plusses - 363 comments - 274 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-07-20 20:56:33
    Death Wish Coffee: 200% more caffeine!

    Too much caffeine?

  • 1058 plusses - 358 comments - 436 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-06-07 00:24:54
    Should President Obama be removed from office over Prism?

    It's a pretty simple question.

    Each president puts his hand on the bible at inauguration and swears that he will "preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."

    The 4th Amendment to the Constitution says: "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized."

    The constant data mining of American citizens' information on Facebook, Google, Yahoo, Skype, Apple and other sites has become "the most prolific contributor" to President Obama's daily intelligence report. 

    So Obama is helping himself to your personal emails, locations, relationships and more. 

    Is this a violation of the Constitution and a direct failure of the president to uphold his oath of office? If not, why not? 


  • 317 plusses - 357 comments - 75 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-02-02 14:42:24
    Are transparent displays dumb or brilliant?

    A see-through iPhone hit the Google+ "What's Hot" list this week. One day later, a transparent-display iPad hit the list as well.

    Transparent-display iPhones and clear iPads don't exist, of course. They're "design fiction" -- drawings and videos created with the help of software to create the illusion of reality.

    But do transparent displays have a future in real life?

    Here's my column about see-through displays, where I say they're terrible for mobile devices, but fantastic for just about every other application. Plus, you can buy one now from Samsung!

  • 1117 plusses - 357 comments - 103 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-11-22 02:45:27
    Another columnist agrees: Copying Apple has really paid off for Samsung.

    +Alexis C. Madrigal, writing for +The Atlantic, points out that Samsung's total fine for copying Apple -- $888 million -- is lunch money compared to the billions they made with those infringing products. 

    He points out that until Samsung released iPhone copycat phones in 2010, the company basically had no smartphone business at all. 

    This is part of the point I made in my Saturday +Cult of Mac column. Yes, they infringed. But it was totally worth it. 



  • 476 plusses - 355 comments - 75 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-08-28 15:41:56
    Deluxe Apartment In the Sky Lets You Keep an Eye On Your Car

    A luxury high-rise condominium complex in Singapore called the Hamilton Scotts features an elevator for cars that delivers your ride into a glass garage inside your unit.

    Using the lift requires a biometric scanner of some kind, so crooks can't gain access to your car -- or the inside of your condo. 


    Posted first on Google+ by +Sam Manohur. 
  • 1136 plusses - 355 comments - 301 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-06-07 00:37:55
    Awesome round-up of HD transit-of-venus video.
  • 1179 plusses - 354 comments - 440 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2012-07-01 20:32:45
    Google+ lets you control email after you've sent it!

    Sure, you could send regular email, but why? 

    As a sender of email, Google+ gives you control over the message. 

    Let’s say you use Google+ to send email to your boss in the evening. You sleep on it, and wish you had added a few additional comments. 

    Because you sent via Google+, you can!

    Just open the post and make your changes. When your boss gets around to reading your email, it will show the edited version, not the original. You can edit as often as you like. 

    You can edit email even after the recipient has read it. 

    You can also delete emails after you’ve sent them. 

    When the recipient opens the e-mail after you’ve deleted it, they can see the first few words. But if they use Gmail, the body of the email becomes “This post no longer exists.” 

    If they’re not using Gmail, they get a link to a Google+ page that says “This post could not be found.”

    There are services that let you delete messages after sending. For example, a site called Burn Note ( https://burnnote.com ) allows you to write a note to someone on their site. They get a link to that note in their email. 

    Once the recipient starts reading the message, a timer starts and the message is deleted when the timer runs out. Messages can be read only once. 

    Burn Note is nice, but you have to decide in advance that your message is going to be deleted and choose in advance to use Burn Note. 

    If you send email via Google+, you can decide to delete the whole conversation after the fact. And you can do it without the pressure of a timer. Just delete it when you want to delete it.

    Neither you nor the recipient nor anyone else will have access to the email conversation after you’ve deleted it. 

    One caveat, though. If you send an email via Google+ to someone who does not have a Google+ account, they will not be able to comment on the message. (Even they create an account, they won’t be able to, because the message was not addressed to their new Gmail account. You can, however, tell them in their email that by clicking on your name and going to your profile, they’ll be able to send you an email from there if they’re logged in.) 

    To send an email to a Google+ user, just use a + mention in the body of the post. That will trigger Gmail to send them an email version.

    To send an email to a non-Google+ user, or to any non-Gmail address, just + mention the whole email address in the body of the post. 

    Sure, you can send regular email. But why not take advantage of the total control Google+ gives you?

    UPDATE:  +Jannik Lindquist pointed out that Hotmail, and presumably many other e-mail systems, will receive the full message, rather than just a link. This full message will remain the same, even after you edit the post. 

    Here's a work-around: Post only the words you would like to appear in the Subject of your email, then send. After it has been sent, edit the post by adding the "body" of your email message. That way, recipients on Hotmail and other systems will get just a Subject, plus a link to the full message, which you can edit or delete. 

    (Pic props to Paramount Pictures)
  • 1803 plusses - 352 comments - 1104 shares | Read in G+
  • Mike Elgan2013-01-31 08:08:59
    Solution to Beijing's horrible 'airpocalypse' air pollution crisis: Show 'em pictures of clean air!

    In other news: Wow! That is a big-ass screen!

  • 1595 plusses - 347 comments - 356 shares | Read in G+