• Competing Interests

    August 19, 2016
    Khürt Williams

    I enjoyed reading the Washington Post Tim Cook interview. The interview was wide in scope and really gives you a window into the mind of Apple’s CEO. I recommend it. One section that raised my eyebrows was the discussion of security and privacy. This issue is a fascinating one to me because Apple has taken such a leading role in advocating privacy rights for consumers. As Tim explaned in the interview, “Customers should have an expectation that they shouldn’t need a PhD in computer science to protect themselves.”

    Elsewhere in the interview, Tim talks about Apple’s mission.

    The DNA of the company is really what I was talking about there. The North Star has always been the same, which for us, is about making insanely great products that really change the world in some way — enrich people’s lives. And so our reason for being hasn’t changed.

    I absolutely believe the folks at Apple get out of bed in the morning to make great products. However, it really isn’t that simple. If you don’t believe me, perhaps I could interest you in a 16GB iPhone. Making insanely great products has always required compromises. Apple has to make a profit if they want to stay in business and every Apple product (just like any other company’s product) that comes to market requires thousands of small compromises. That’s always come with the territory but until recently, I’ve never really thought of Apple having a competing North Star. Now I wonder.

    Privacy is a big deal to Apple. Tim explained:

    Privacy, in my point of view, is a civil liberty that our Founding Fathers thought of a long time ago and concluded it was an essential part of what it was to be an American. Sort of on the level, if you will, with freedom of speech, freedom of the press.

    I think this is more than CEO puffing. I think Tim, and the rest of Apple leadership, feels this in their bones and they are absolutely willing to go to bat for consumers on the issue of privacy. They took a drubbing over the San Bernardino case and I suspect they’d do it all over again. The question, however, becomes what happens when protecting consumer privacy gets in the way of making insanely great products? If Apple’s unstoppable force hits its own immovable object, who wins?

    There are plenty of consumers already getting off the Apple services bandwagon in favor of Google precisely because the way Google does everything on its servers results in some insanely great user experiences. Apple is responding by trying to get those types of services on-device–as opposed to the less private cloud storage as Google does. We’re early days on this but it seems, at least for the immediate future, that the cloud service solution is better, faster, and more adaptable than on-device.

    If Tim Cook were sitting here right now, I suspect he’d argue that the 2016 version of an insanely great product is one that (in addition to many other features) protects user privacy and going back to the issue of compromises, it’s probably better that you not let somebody else index all of your photos, even if that would make it easier to search out pictures of canteloupes. I agree with that particular compromise but as we move into the next few years, I think the goals of great products and protecting user privacy aren’t always going to align.

    Read more at MacSparky

  • iBook 2.0

    January 19, 2012
    Khürt Williams
    Apple Unveils iBooks 2.0 Apple has just announced iBooks 2 at it’s education themed event in New York. It’s the next evolution of eBooks for the iPad that Phil Schiller calls “amazing — graphic, fun, engaging”. Google+: View post on Google+ Post imported by Google+Blog.

  • More iBooks news

    January 19, 2012
    Khürt Williams
    Apple unveils iBooks Author, a Mac app for easy interactive e-book authoring (via The Apple Blob) Apple’s Roger Rosner, VP of productivity software, showed off Apple’s new iBooks Author on Thursday at Apple’s special media event in NYC. iBooks Author is a Mac app that provides tools to help anyone publish interactive digital books, complete with rich media features. Google+: View post on Google+ Post imported by Google+Blog.

  • Mac app “iBook Author” released today

    January 19, 2012
    Khürt Williams
    Apple Announces “iBooks Author” Mac App, Available For Free Today (via MacStories) At its education media event in New York, Apple’s Phil Schiller just announced iBooks Author, a new Mac app for authoring books. From an intuitive interface that takes advantage of the desktop’s real screen estate, authors will be able to create and manage interactive books to use in the new iBooks 2, also announced ...

  • iBooks 2.0 Now Available

    January 19, 2012
    Khürt Williams
    iBooks 2.0 Now Available (via MacStories) Following the announcement at the media event in New York City, Apple just released a major new version of iBooks, iBooks 2.0. As we detailed in our overview, iBooks 2.0 is mainly focused on enabling textbook support – Apple has cut deals with a series of publishers to bring iBookstore-based textbooks to the United States, and iBooks 2.0 brings full ...

  • Early Apple Engineer Daniel Kottke to keynote at Vintage Computer Festival

    January 16, 2012
    Khürt Williams
    >Dan Kottke was Steve Jobs’ college buddy, India travel companion, Apple 1 board builder, and Apple employee #12. He helped design the Apple II series, Apple III, and Macintosh. He will ( at the VCF East 8.0 at 12:30pm on May 6. (via (

  • Not sure how I would benefit but I would love to attend.

    January 15, 2012
    Khürt Williams
    Not sure how I would benefit but I would love to attend. BlogWorld is the first and only industry-wide trade-show, conference, and media event dedicated to promoting the dynamic industry of new media. Learn about Content Creation, Distribution, Monetization and Social Media Marketing strategies, including step-by-step techniques and leading-edge tools from the most successful and influential Bloggers, Podcasters, Vloggers, Web TV & Radio Broadcasters, Social ...

  • Adobe Lightroom 4 beta

    January 14, 2012
    Khürt Williams
    The Lightroom 4 beta introduces quite a list of features, including a completely new book-creation module, expanded support for video, soft proofing capability, and geo-tagging of still and video images via a Google Maps-powered module. (via dpreview) I’ve been using the beta for a few days and I love it. My only regret is that since its beta software using it as part of ...

  • It’s simple!

    January 13, 2012
    Khürt Williams
    If you look at the two tablets that have succeeded — the Apple iPad and the Amazon Kindle Fire — both Apple and Amazon have treated their tablets as simple screens connected to powerful sets of software and services. Amazon spent a year getting its services lined up before it even launched its tablet, and that turned out to be a brilliant ...

  • Tuesday, January 10, 2012, 7:30 p.m Google+ for Business with Lynette Young

    January 3, 2012
    Khürt Williams
    * LOCATION: Stuart Hall, Room 6, Princeton Theological Seminary, (Alexander St), Princeton, New Jersey. See for map and directions. * WHEN: Tuesday, January 10, 2012, 7:30 p.m. * FREE: Open to the public * CONTACT: Khürt Williams * PHONE : 609-375-8479 * EMAIL: Google+ is the latest attempt at social networking from Internet search, advertising and product giant Google. Already six months old and ...

  • iOS 5 features: Encrypted Mail

    December 17, 2011
    Khürt Williams
    One of the least mentioned features of the new Mail app in iOS 5 is encrypted email. iOS 5 allows the user to send digitally signed or encrypted email to protect your electronic communications. I’ve ( before on this blog. The idea is to use a special key — a digital certificate — to sign and encode your email so that ...