Linked by David Adams on Fri 26th Mar 2010 17:01 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless Yesterday on the radio I heard a segment about the magazine and newspaper business' excitement about the iPad platform, and what it means for their (ailing) business. Let me just say I'm skeptical. It sounds like the primary innovation they're planning is rich-media, interactive advertisements. Because if there's one thing that's wrong with the publishing industry, it's that their ads aren't intrusive enough. At the end of the radio segment, they announced that virtual "issues" of popular magazines on the iPad will cost $3. Let me predict now that this will end in tears. On the other hand, Apple's decision to pre-populate their bookstore with 30K books from Project Gutenberg is a great idea, and will do more for the iPad platform than $3 magazines and Auto ads disguised as VR racing games.
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Why?
by darknexus on Fri 26th Mar 2010 17:12 UTC
darknexus
Member since:
2008-07-15

What makes you think Apple will ever open up the iPad? They have no real reason to do so. Right now, all apps go through them and they get a 30% of all app sales. They get to dictate the device's experience from top to bottom. Why would they give that up? I'm sure they'd do the same to OS X if they thought they could get away with it, and Jobs has never been one to relinquish any control he's managed to gain. Don't get me wrong, I like the iPhone OS platform and would really love to see it open up. I like my iPhone a lot, and an iPad would be awesome for me, and I may even get one because Apple has promised that iBooks will always be accessible to us blind folks (take that, Amazon!) but I just don't think it's likely they'll open it up at least not while Jobs is on the scene. The two forms of openness I'd like to see from the iPhone OS platform:
1. Open it up so I can install whatever apps I want. Make a little hidden setting with a big red warning if that'll make them feel better, but regardless let me do it. Hell, send my serial number to Apple saying I no longer qualify for technical support even, I wouldn't object to that.
2. Stop locking out other sync managers. I don't actually mind iTunes on OS X (the Windows version is complete shite though) but I prefer to use Linux and there is no iTunes. I'm not saying Apple needs to go out of their way to support 3rd party syncing, they don't. Just don't actively try to break it, that's all I ask.
Yeah yeah, I'm dreaming, but it doesn't hurt to dream every once in a while.

Reply Score: 4

Neolander
by Neolander on Fri 26th Mar 2010 18:37 UTC
Neolander
Member since:
2010-03-08

Give me one more, and I might buy an iPhone OS device : after removing App Store lock-in and Itunes lock-in, I also want the right to use it on whatever device I want, not only iphone-ish tablets : the iPhoneOS devices are nice toys, but they're extremely expensive and the smaller ones definitely lack a keyboard when it comes to serious things. And paying several dozens of dollars when you need to replace your USB cable is just ridiculous.

Reply Score: 1

Bah! Apple
by twitterfire on Fri 26th Mar 2010 18:52 UTC
twitterfire
Member since:
2008-09-11

Apple likes everything they can get for free. And they like to sell stuff at very, very expensive rates.

They got large parts of their OS for free from BSD guys, they got webkit for free from KDE guys, they got the gcc compiler for free from GNU. Now they got 30 000 books from project Gutenberg for free and they charge as high as they can for their lousy iPad. They only know take "gifts", they never give back anything.

I wouldn't buy a Mac even if it's the only computer on earth. I wouldn't buy iPhone even if st's the only phone on earth. I wouldn't buy or use any Apple stuff.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Bah! Apple
by daveak on Fri 26th Mar 2010 19:26 UTC in reply to "Bah! Apple"
daveak Member since:
2008-12-29

Apple forked KHTML yes, but they have since put a hell of a lot of work into WebKit while KHTML itself has stagnated in comparison. They also give a lot back to GCC with their work on CLANG and LLVM etc.

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: Bah! Apple
by anevilyak on Fri 26th Mar 2010 19:28 UTC in reply to "RE: Bah! Apple"
anevilyak Member since:
2005-09-14

They also give a lot back to GCC with their work on CLANG and LLVM etc.


You do realize Clang/LLVM is a completely separate compiler and project from GCC, yes? It is technically possible to use Clang with GCC as a backend, but that's not the overall intention.

Reply Score: 4

RE[3]: Bah! Apple
by strcpy on Fri 26th Mar 2010 20:04 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Bah! Apple"
strcpy Member since:
2009-05-20


You do realize Clang/LLVM is a completely separate compiler and project from GCC, yes? It is technically possible to use Clang with GCC as a backend, but that's not the overall intention.


Good for them and good for Clang/LLVM.

I also thought that forking was okay, even encouraged, in the FOSS land. The free software advocates at Debian at least do it all the time.

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: Bah! Apple
by anevilyak on Fri 26th Mar 2010 20:09 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Bah! Apple"
anevilyak Member since:
2005-09-14


I also thought that forking was okay, even encouraged, in the FOSS land. The free software advocates at Debian at least do it all the time.


I wasn't intending to imply otherwise, I simply wanted to clarify that work on Clang/LLVM is in no way related to giving back to GCC, nothing more.

Reply Score: 5

RE[3]: Bah! Apple
by daveak on Sat 27th Mar 2010 12:39 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Bah! Apple"
daveak Member since:
2008-12-29

I wasn't aware of the details no, was mainly going off the gcc frontend being used and therefore thought it was related to gcc itself.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Bah! Apple
by darknexus on Fri 26th Mar 2010 20:00 UTC in reply to "Bah! Apple"
darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

Apple likes everything they can get for free. And they like to sell stuff at very, very expensive rates.


Well, duh. It's called making money, and most businesses like to do it.

Reply Score: 4

Relatively inconvenient?
by AdamW on Fri 26th Mar 2010 20:47 UTC
AdamW
Member since:
2005-07-06

How's it 'relatively inconvenient' to read Gutenberg stuff? I go to the site, download an ePub file, copy it onto my Sony Reader, done. Takes all of ten seconds...

Reply Score: 2

RE: Relatively inconvenient?
by David on Fri 26th Mar 2010 21:04 UTC in reply to "Relatively inconvenient?"
David Member since:
1997-10-01

That wasn't a very clear statement. I was referring to the pre ebook reader days, when you had to sit at your desk or print them out.

Reply Score: 2

huh?
by deathshadow on Fri 26th Mar 2010 22:29 UTC
deathshadow
Member since:
2005-07-12

They're going to offer for free something that you can get for free on any platform?

... and this is news WHY exactly?

Of course, they have such a wonderful selection of high literature like "Rollo goes to Switzerland" and "The Arkansas Planter"

Seriously, are there any books on Project Gutenburg people might actually WANT to read?

Edited 2010-03-26 22:33 UTC

Reply Score: 4

RE: huh?
by helf on Fri 26th Mar 2010 23:44 UTC in reply to "huh?"
helf Member since:
2005-07-06

yes? Have you looked through it at all? There are tons of books that have had their copyrights expire that are on project gutenberg.

Just look at their top 100 downloaded page - http://www.gutenberg.org/browse/scores/top


oh, wait, its not just current drivel written for 5th grade reading levels. I'm sorry. ;)

Reply Score: 7

RE[2]: huh?
by deathshadow on Sat 27th Mar 2010 19:17 UTC in reply to "RE: huh?"
deathshadow Member since:
2005-07-12

oh, wait, its not just current drivel written for 5th grade reading levels. I'm sorry. ;)

Funny - since all but one of the top ten of that list is stuff that when I went through grade school was on the required reading list.

But then we wonder why kids are entering elementary school without the ability to do basic arithmetic or to get past what was once considered a 2nd grade reading level... and then some school systems throw them into calculus courses they'll never understand without the basics while making them re-read "Catcher in the Rye" for the tenth time.

See my 2nd cousin's kid...

Edited 2010-03-27 19:17 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: huh?
by helf on Sat 27th Mar 2010 20:11 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: huh?"
helf Member since:
2005-07-06

yeah, sadly that is true. Standards have definitely dropped ;)

Guess I should have said 2nd grade level ;)

Edited 2010-03-27 20:12 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE: huh?
by Cody Evans on Fri 26th Mar 2010 23:52 UTC in reply to "huh?"
Cody Evans Member since:
2009-08-14

H.G. Wells, War of the Worlds?

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: huh?
by leech on Sat 27th Mar 2010 03:47 UTC in reply to "RE: huh?"
leech Member since:
2006-01-10

Damn, I bought that book and read it off of printed paper!

Actually I'm kidding about that, sometimes it's good to get away from the glare of an LCD / CRT.

But on a related note, I noticed a few weeks ago that there is a Project Gutenberg program for my Nokia N900 as well, so eat it Apple!

For the record, N900 is totally awesome, and not locked in like Apple. The only thing it's really lacking is the number of apps, but then again, most of the ones in the AppStore are just stupid little toy programs.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: huh?
by Cody Evans on Sat 27th Mar 2010 14:22 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: huh?"
Cody Evans Member since:
2009-08-14

I really want to buy a N900, but it doesn't support 3G data on AT&T...

PS. I read ebooks on my netbook, all conveniently stored on a 8GB SD card.

Reply Score: 1

RE: huh?
by segedunum on Sat 27th Mar 2010 00:59 UTC in reply to "huh?"
segedunum Member since:
2005-07-06

Seriously, are there any books on Project Gutenburg people might actually WANT to read?

Errrr, there's a hell of a lot of classics on there from Sherlock Holmes to the Count of Monte Cristo, Kidnapped, Treasure Island, Alice in Wonderland....... The list is endless.

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: huh?
by Thom_Holwerda on Sat 27th Mar 2010 04:17 UTC in reply to "RE: huh?"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Pet peeve: Alice In Wonderland is not a book; it refers to two Disney films.

The proper titles are "Alice's Adventures In Wonderland" and "Through The Looking Glass And What Alice Found There".

As you were. The local Alice nerd will shut up now.

Reply Score: 2

RE: huh?
by alcibiades on Sat 27th Mar 2010 07:46 UTC in reply to "huh?"
alcibiades Member since:
2005-10-12

Dickens
Jane Austen
Flaubert
Tolstoy
Dostoevsky
Trollope
Mark Twain
Laclos
Zola
Balzac
Baudelaire
Yeats
George Eliot.....

Oh, and Gibbon, Dr Johnson, Rimbaud, Ronsard, Couperus, Fielding, Donne, Herbert, Crashaw, Marvell, Crabbe, Pope.....

Edited 2010-03-27 07:49 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE: huh?
by wazoox on Sat 27th Mar 2010 11:41 UTC in reply to "huh?"
wazoox Member since:
2005-07-14

I bought a PRS505 and I read almost exclusively books downloaded from gutenberg. Right now there are 80 of them in my eBook.

Reply Score: 1

Gonna have to disagree...
by tomcat on Sat 27th Mar 2010 09:41 UTC
tomcat
Member since:
2006-01-06

But here's where the uncomfortable truth comes in: $3 iPad magazines will fail because we have become too accustomed to digital goods being cheaper than physical goods, if not outright free. People will pay money for digital goods, but only if they have the right combination of convenience and economy. For another reference point The Wall Street Journal plans to charge US$17.99 a month.


First, it isn't entirely set in stone that magazines will charge $3 per issue. Many of them already charge that price for a physical magazine, which covers the cost of ground distribution. If you eliminate the need to load magazines onto trucks and planes, you can reduce the cost of subscriptions. Second, people already pay for lots of digital content(iTunes, Amazon MP3s, etc). Which isn't any more convenient than the iPad. The real differentiator would have to be the seamlessness of the experience. As long as Apple can achieve that -- and you have to believe that it will do a fairly good job, given that it completely controls the content pipeline for the iPad -- then it can be more or less successful.

However, anybody that thinks that the iPad is going to single-handedly rescue the ailing media industry is NUTS. People are estimating somewhere around 3-5 million iPads sold over the next year. Even if that number rose to 10 million, it's a drop in the bucket and won't be able to support the media industry. They need a much wider distribution pipe than that. Which means we're going to see a lot more failures and consolidation before things improve.

Edited 2010-03-27 09:42 UTC

Reply Score: 4

RE: Gonna have to disagree...
by bornagainenguin on Sat 27th Mar 2010 15:03 UTC in reply to "Gonna have to disagree..."
bornagainenguin Member since:
2005-08-07

tomcat pointed out...

However, anybody that thinks that the iPad is going to single-handedly rescue the ailing media industry is NUTS. People are estimating somewhere around 3-5 million iPads sold over the next year. Even if that number rose to 10 million, it's a drop in the bucket and won't be able to support the media industry. They need a much wider distribution pipe than that. Which means we're going to see a lot more failures and consolidation before things improve.


Probably you're right, but I have a rebuttal: podcasts.

Podcasts (which existed long before the iPod by different names) were popularized by Apple and included in iTunes, yet you do not need to use iTunes to access them, nor are you required to have an iPod to use one. Consider how much the podcast has grown since Apple begun subtly pushing the format! Consider that it has singlehandedly revived the old fashioned radio show, something I didn't think was possible thanks to the destruction of radio by Corporate Radio. Can Apple do it again with eZines?

I honestly don't know. Thom is probably very right that this will all end in tears for the publishers if they insist on trying to recreate the web as it existed before adblocking, stomping Godzillas and zooming airplanes and all... If they manage to be creative about ads and not annoying enough to put people off? If the price is right? Hmmm...

But to say this is impossible or anyone thinking it likely is insane due to the numbers of iPads shipping is going a bit far. It is unlikely, either Apple or the publishers will pull it off, but it is also way too soon to write them off either. As podcasts show, there is no reason why the eZine format has to stay exclusive to the iPad...

--bornagainpenguin

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Gonna have to disagree...
by Zifre on Sat 27th Mar 2010 21:40 UTC in reply to "RE: Gonna have to disagree..."
Zifre Member since:
2009-10-04

I honestly don't know. Thom is probably very right that this will all end in tears for the publishers if they insist on trying to recreate the web as it existed before adblocking, stomping Godzillas and zooming airplanes and all... If they manage to be creative about ads and not annoying enough to put people off? If the price is right? Hmmm...

I agree totally. Personally, I will never buy any electronic magazine unless it works just like a regular magazine.

Pick up basically any magazine. Flip to a random page. Chances are that it is an article. No ads. Keep flipping until you find an ad. Most likely, it is tasteful. It is probably well designed, and appropriate. It doesn't fly around the page. It doesn't interfere with the content. If you don't like it, flip to the next page and read an article.

Until the Internet and electronic magazines are like that, I will use ad-block. And I am definitely not going to pay more money for a format that has negligible distribution costs and more intrusive ads...

Reply Score: 2

Ah, Apple...
by Almafeta on Sat 27th Mar 2010 20:55 UTC
Almafeta
Member since:
2007-02-22

Graciously permitting you to see what you could already get for free.

Reply Score: 2