Applesauce: All Things Apple – August 19, 2012
Michael Harper for redOrbit.com – Your Universe Online
We’re all just waiting for a decision and some new Apple goodness. How about some Applesauce while we wait?
One day very soon, we’ll be out of this Apple v Samsung mess. Sure, the first week was interesting, but now that they’re discussing the boring things like patents and patent infringement, each story sort of blurs into the next one doesn’t it? After all, we’re mostly impartial, aren’t we? We have our preferences, sure. Some of us like the iPhone, some of us need to have our intelligence validated daily by fixing a buggy Android. (I kid.)
In the end, I think we’re all just waiting on a verdict, no matter what it is. At least then, we’ll have closure, and maybe one day we can all learn to live with one another in peace and harmony and hug trees and talk about our feelings.
I would like to call attention to one unsung hero of this trial, one Judge Lucy Koh. I’ve admired her from afar this entire case and, to show my appreciation and respect, I’ve written her a little letter. I hope you like it.
Let’s Go Away For Awhile
Dear Judge Koh,
Do you mind if I call you Lucy? How about Lu?
No, you’re right. Best not to get too familiar too soon. After all, we haven’t really met. I’ve been watching your latest court case from afar, several states to the east of your sunny California, and you’ve struck me. It seems like all anyone wants to talk about is whether or not Samsung copied Apple or whether or not Apple is being ridiculous in claiming a patent over shapes. Samsung calls some numbers into the official record and suddenly the world cares how much Apple has spent on marketing and how many iPhones they’ve sold and in what quarter. I know that’s not the kind of stuff a lady such as yourself concerns herself with. You’ve got better things on your mind, other places you’d rather be. I’ve been watching you as you sit there every day while these two companies hurl arguments at one another. I haven’t been watching you in a creepy way, though, More like in that Sting way, you know, every move you make.
Well, that’s creepy too, when you think about it.
Point is, I feel your pain. I know how hard it must be to spend hours upon hours in a room while snooty hipster designers and pocket protector wearing engineer nerds parade up and down your court room (YOUR court room) taking the witness stand, answering questions, stepping down from the stand, never taking a moment to appreciate the fact that they’re sitting next to one of the finest Judges in California’s District Court system. You’ve been subjected to a flat, mind-numbing symphony of the droning woodwinds of objection after objection, the sharp and blaring brass of empty accusations, all accompanied by the furious and monotone clack clack clack of the journalist’s keyboards. And to think, Reuters wanted to open up the entire session and invite even more journalists into the room.
I know we haven’t met, but I have to think you wouldn’t bring your Judge crew over to the local presses and start handing down judgments on the daily happenings of a journalist. You’re not the kind of woman to hover over a keyboard, making deductions for every stroke of the “delete” key, for every misuse of “Their, There, They’re” or every misspelling. You’re a lady, a woman; A woman with needs, and right now, those needs include a beach, a large umbrella, a really good book (none of this 50 Shades of Gray nonsense. You’re classier than that) and perhaps a nip or two from a good, stiff libation. Picture yourself there, Lucy: You, with your favorite swimsuit and the biggest pair of sunglasses you can find and a new sun hat. The waves are rolling in at your feet, erasing the footprints you’ve only just left behind. You stare out into the deep, breathing with the waves. And there you are, inhaling and exhaling just like the ocean as time melts slowly, ever slowly away. You’ve been cooped up in the courtroom far too long, Lu.
No, you’re right. I’m sorry. Lucy.
You didn’t spend all those years in law school to become Apple and Samsung’s mother. And that John Quinn? Let’s forget his name ever entered into your realm of knowing. How dare he beg you to change your mind, to reconsider? After all, you’re an adult woman. You’ve got your mind, your wits about you. If you want to reject something, I say go for it. For days you’ve sat there from your rightful perch as each attorney and each lawyer presents to you their most flowery version of “Nuh-UH! HE Started it!” You’ve been waiting, ever so patiently, for the day when you could return to your normal cases, your regular life, the life you had before this entire saga began. I bet in those other cases, there was a clear right and wrong, wasn’t there? I bet you handed down judgment with swiftness, with a firm hand on the rudder and a good head on your shoulders. I can tell these things about you, Lucy.
So, I think you were completely justified in putting the lawyers in their place this week. Sure, there might not be anything too ferocious or demeaning about “Please don’t do this to me. I’ve cried uncle.” or accusing someone of smoking crack, but that’s not who you are. You’re not ferocious. You know what you want, and you like to cut your disdain with a bit of sarcasm. I get where you’re coming from. And honestly, where does Apple get off, saying they didn’t mean to burden the court with their 75-page list of witnesses? What will Apple be able to say in these last hours that they haven’t already said? We get it, you build phones at a kitchen table. The first iPhone team made loose references to the Fight Club and put in long hours. Their designer is British and therefore, inherently better than the rest of us. It’s clear Samsung went out of their way to, at the very least, use the iPhone as their foundation. I’m sorry, I’m talking about the case again. When a deserving woman such as yourself is left to put up with the pedantic whining of overpaid suits, sometimes you have to let them know where you stand, let them know how you feel. I know you’ve been watching the clock. You’ve no doubt had a timer set on your phone, what is it, an iPhone? Samsung?
You know what, forget that. You don’t have to give me an answer.
You’ve been waiting for that last bit of sand to fall to the bottom of the timer. These grains of sand are all that stand in between this case and some well-deserved Lucy time. When that last bit of sand finally makes its glorious journey of freedom, you’ll be able to gather your things, slip into something comfortable, and make your way into a long, luxurious 3 day weekend.
Lucy, you won’t be hearing this from any of the other journalists, but I think you’ve not only done a fine job so far, handling yourself with aplomb and keeping these warring factors at bay, but you’ve also been a lovely mouthpiece for the rest of the world. In my opinion, most would prefer these two companies just get on with it already. We understand that they think it’s important to fight one another into a bloody pulp. We understand that they think they deserve payment and restitution.
You know what? When I was a kid, I fought with the same amount of fervor to prove to my parents that my younger brother had copied me when he started wearing the same Starter jacket as I. I wanted them to rip that jacket off him and tell him he couldn’t ever wear it again. Looking back, my parents must’ve hated me. Instead, my mom looked at me with a calm yet slightly irritated eye and said, “You both have jackets. You’re better off than most.”
You get it, Lucy. These two companies could be out there now, doing the things they love, selling products and loving life. We should all be so lucky. And this weekend, I hope that you’ll also be so lucky, my little Lucky Lucy. I hope you get everything you’ve ever dreamt of and more. It’s not easy handing down justice to the undeserving, but you do it well. If I may be so forward, Lucy, justice looks mighty fine on you. Mighty fine indeed.
Wouldn’t it Be Nice
It’s been a crazy year for the iPad Mini, as earlier this spring it was seen as nothing more than a rumor, one that many (including myself) tried to dismiss as quickly as possible. Since that time, this little rumor that could has gone from a whisper on our lips to full on, 100% expectation. In fact, I’d wager to say if Apple didn’t at least announce the thing come September 12, many in the tech circuit would immediately pan their entire event, saying things like Apple “missed the mark” or produced a “yawn worthy event” or possibly even “missed expectations.” Ah, who am I kidding. Those headlines are going to be printed no matter what Apple announces. They could announce an iPhone that grants each user the gift of flight and there’d still be some complaining that it doesn’t have expandable memory.
So, while we’ve more or less “known” about the “iPad Mini” for some time now (I much prefer Gruber’s iPad Air prediction) we haven’t yet had a picture of what the thing looks like, until now. 9to5Mac.com posted some diagrams and pictures this week of what the rumored “iPad Air” could look like, and based on these pictures, there’s nothing too exciting. In fact, like many of us had probably assumed, the thing could look like a cross between the iPad and the iPod Touch, nice and slim with a pair of cameras and a tapered edge. One point brought up by the 9 to 5 team is a matter of volume control. According to their sources, the “iPad Air” will adopt volume controls more akin to the iPhone, with individual buttons rather than the iPad and iPod Touch rocker switch. The 9 to 5 Mac team also speculated on several other points, such as bezel size, how many cameras and LTE connectivity. One day soon, dear readers, we may have all these questions answered and more. Now we play the waiting game.
God Only Knows
Speaking of rumors, we’re still expecting the new iPhone September 12th, and while there had been some speculation about its availability on September 21st, iMore.com has said they’ve confirmed these dates with their Sources Familiar With the Matter. According to Rene Ritchie, Apple will open pre-orders for their next smartphone the same day they announce the thing, September 12th. Then, anxious Apple fans will only have to wait an excruciating 9 days for their new devices to arrive on their stoops. This information has been “confirmed” by BGR as well, saying their sources have confirmed that AT&T has blocked out any vacation requests during the weeks surrounding the alleged announcement and release day. I don’t want to be the pessimistic one here, but is anyone else worried that this launch could go less-than-smoothly? If the iMore team is correct, Apple will not only open their pre-orders day of announcement, they’ll also be taking pre-orders from several countries. Last year, those crazy, ridiculous people without lives and angry spouses who stayed up late to be one of the first to pre-order (ahem) experienced problems with the site. In fact, Apple’s site has gone down in the wake of a few of their new announcements and releases. Have they learned their lesson? Furthermore, with this news about Apple’s Retail operations and their blundered “experimental scheduling formula” will the brick and mortar stores be prepared for what has already been called the most anticipated iPhone yet? I certainly hope so. As a company who cares so much about customer experiences, this could be a potentially bad first impression for the Cupertino company.