Steve Jobs unveiled the MacBook Air - and Apple's future - 10 years ago today

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  • Reply 41 of 44
    fastasleepfastasleep Posts: 2,302member
    cgWerks said:
    fastasleep said:
    I was waiting for the "Steve Jobs would've never let this happen" parrot. Good job, you're just as unoriginal as the other posts like this.
    I don't think it takes too much imagination to expect that Steve would have done some things differently than Tim. Some of it would have been better for Apple, though given Apple's extremely rapid expansion, it's quite possible Tim has also made some better decisions than Steve would have.

    The core argument (along these lines), though, is that Apple's core values seem to have changed (from what Steve asserted). If that is the case (and I think it is), then yes, Steve wouldn't have let some of the bad things I - as a long term Apple observer - have seen happen. It *can* just be a silly thing to parrot, but I think it also has a good bit of substance if properly stated and justified.
    What did Jobs "assert" Apple's core values were? Make great products that make people happy? Apple still does that. The OP wrote "Apple was on a roll with Steve's last decade. And Tim has cut products, forgotten products and delayed products." which is clearly bullshit for multiple reasons: a) Apple is still on a roll by any measure, b) Jobs cut products or I'm not sure what "forgotten products" means but he definitely abandoned some products (Xserve? Ping? Cube? HiFi? iPod Socks? who cares , and c) "delayed" is usually speculative as people say Apple delayed unannounced products all the time. A few times they've actually delayed things they said would be released by a certain date, but those are few and far between. Was the X supposed to come out the same time as the 8/8 Plus? Maybe, who knows or cares. HomePod? I think we'd all rather they got it right than meet an arbitrary deadline. The whole narrative is bullshit. NOBODY can possibly know what Jobs would or wouldn't do in a certain situation. Cook may have some of the best insight as to what he would've done, but as we all know Jobs told him to not think that way, but to do what's right. And the armchair CEOs love to point out what they think Cook did wrong, it's hard to argue he's somehow harmed Apple or stopped it's momentous growth. Jobs had no shortage of flubs in his otherwise impressive last decade. Also, it's ridiculous to ignore Cook's part in getting Apple to where it was at the end of Jobs' tenure, as well as the other generals who are largely still there and are probably far more responsible for any of Cook's perceived stumbles than he is himself.

    fastasleep said:
    ... If you make a living from accepting people handing you USB-A devices or something, have an adapter or hub where you work always. It's not hard. What else is missing?
    How many USB-C peripherals have you seen? I've yet to see one (though I know they do exist).
    What's missing? How about some hubs? How about some reasonably priced docks? Mass market swing to peripherals with USB-C connectors? Industry standards?
    Tons. Have a look at Amazon:
    • 59,504 results for 
    "usb-c"
    • 3,695 results for Electronics : Computers & Accessories : "usb-c hub"  
    • 2,639 results for "usb-c dock"
    • 1,013 results for Electronics : Computers & Accessories : "thunderbolt 3 dock"  <-- there are "reasonably priced" docks in these results

    Yes, there is a massive swing to using these connectors. There are USB-C to USB-A cables to connect your existing USB 3.0 with USB-A connector devices, if you don't like dongles. "Industry standards"? What do you think USB *is*?

    fastasleep said:
    ... As for video connectors, do you want them to keep every port possible, so your laptop has DVI, mDP, HDMI, so forth? I'm sure they've done the calculations on how many people need which, and how much it's worth to keep a plethora of random ports for one purpose on portable machine, when you can just buy a single adapter to attach to your monitor's connector. I haven't once thought about the the DVI to mDP adapters I have on both my 30" ACDs I still use, because I just plug in the stupid mDP and USB connectors. I cannot wait until I just have a single USB-C connector on a monitor, or a USB-C to whatever my monitor has.
    The big ones (to at least have one some optional model of a pro machine) would be, IMO, video, Ethernet, and USB-A (at least one). I know they dumped Ethernet a generation back. HDMI might be the best video to have, though that's required a dongle for some time. An SD card slot would be nice on bigger models. There should be at least one option for a pro machine not to *require* a dock or a bag full of dongles to do basic stuff.

    Personally, I don't care. I'm fine with a couple USB-C ports. But, I think for pro machines, that's a bit too inconvenient when you're very likely to regularly need the connectivity for your work (i.e.: giving a presentation, working in a server room, being a photographer, etc.). That said, the ports are the least of the issues with the new MBP.
    With regard to "video" — you say HDMI, but I have no use for that, as I've never owned an HDMI monitor (dual DVI or mDP, yes). Ethernet... just get an adapter to stick on your cord at work/home where you use it. If you are one of the very few people who need that giant jack built in to your laptop on the go, then an adapter is essential. Sorry, but no need to make the 99% of users who don't need it carry that around so you can save a tiny bit of hassle. I don't care about SD slots either (what about people who want microSD? Compact Flash? etc), I can plug a USB cord into my camera directly to unload stuff. Or get an adapter with ethernet and SD card slot and HDMI and a few USB-A ports and call it good. Carry it with you in your laptop bag next to your charger. There are several small boxes that have all those things for a range of prices depending on which ports you need, down to $20-30 or so. That's what I'll probably do just to have one on hand should I end up needing it for a job or something when I upgrade to a new machine this year. It's *really* not that big of a deal. MOST users don't need all those ports in random places that aren't where they usually sit and work.
  • Reply 42 of 44
    cgWerkscgWerks Posts: 1,893member
    fastasleep said:

    What did Jobs "assert" Apple's core values were?

    ...

    Tons. Have a look at Amazon:
    • 59,504 results for "usb-c"
    • 3,695 results for Electronics : Computers & Accessories : "usb-c hub"  
    • 2,639 results for "usb-c dock"
    • 1,013 results for Electronics : Computers & Accessories : "thunderbolt 3 dock"  <-- there are "reasonably priced" docks in these results

    ... "Industry standards"? What do you think USB *is*?

    ...

    ... Sorry, but no need to make the 99% of users who don't need it carry that around so you can save a tiny bit of hassle. ... Or get an adapter with ethernet and SD card slot and HDMI and a few USB-A ports and call it good. Carry it with you in your laptop bag next to your charger. ... MOST users don't need all those ports in random places that aren't where they usually sit and work.

    re: core values - Jobs was about 'think different' and supporting content producers. He prioritized making the best products and championing user experience. Apple has since shifted more towards prioritizing a completely different audience, pop culture (to the detriment to 'think different' and creatives). They also have shifted profits and marketing think in priority over best products and UX. Note, these aren't all or nothing kinds of shifts in most cases, but a matter of what the main driver is.

    re: USB-C - Yes, there is a lot of junk gear out there in a confusing mess. And, if you look closely at your 3,695 'USB-C hubs' you'll notice that not many (any?) are actually USB-C hubs (I only looked at the first few pages). They are actually more like 'docks' where they plug into USB-C and then give a bunch of USB-A ports (or other ports). What I'm talking about is something like the USB-A hubs I have, that plug into USB-A and provide 4-8 USB-A ports. Why are there none of these in USB-C form? Probably because there's not much need for them, as there are very few USB-C devices to plug in. Everyone needs USB-C to a bunch of USB-A ports, because all their devices are USB-A.

    re: industry standards - cf. http://appleinsider.com/articles/17/08/15/psa-thunderbolt-3-cables-longer-than-05m-generally-dont-support-usb-31-speeds or https://marco.org/2017/10/14/impossible-dream-of-usb-c

    re: pros and hassle - I guess this gets back to the question of 'what is pro?' and target markets mentioned above. When you say that 'most people' are you talking about pros who use their laptops in various demanding roles? Or, are you talking more about coffee-shop jockeys who could likely do the same thing with their MacBook Air or MacBook but bought the 'pro' because they are professionals? It's this a bit like saying 'most people' don't even need a Mac and could do fine with an iPad? Sure, but we're talking the pro market here, not 'most people.'

    Yes, some pros don't need the ports, or need a certain port, etc. But, many pros might like to have at least a USB-A port so they don't need an extra dongle for that. I agree that Ethernet is a pretty big port, but I'll bet most pros use it. The saving grace there, is that besides server-room people, I suppose most pros use the laptops at a desk where a dock is often common to get Ethernet. I suppose you're a bit right on video, since there are so many different connection types... but again, that's something a pro would likely use often (like giving presentations).

    The problem with dongles, in my experience, is that they often aren't up to the same quality/reliability as built-in ports, unless you get just the right one (and are quite careful in terms of physical reliability). You end up more like a situation PC people end up in with this dongle not working in that situation, etc. (I think due to different chip-sets used in different dongles.)

    But, again, my argument isn't that many aren't just fine with a couple USB-C ports. My issue is more with it being, suddenly, the only option, even for pro machines. Most people like thin and light... but for pros, those *usually* aren't the top-priority design factors. This is, IMO, what led to the 'trash can' Mac Pro. Great idea, but it wasn't what pros were asking for or prioritizing.
  • Reply 43 of 44
    fastasleepfastasleep Posts: 2,302member
    cgWerks said:
    fastasleep said:

    What did Jobs "assert" Apple's core values were?

    ...

    Tons. Have a look at Amazon:
    • 59,504 results for "usb-c"
    • 3,695 results for Electronics : Computers & Accessories : "usb-c hub"  
    • 2,639 results for "usb-c dock"
    • 1,013 results for Electronics : Computers & Accessories : "thunderbolt 3 dock"  <-- there are "reasonably priced" docks in these results

    ... "Industry standards"? What do you think USB *is*?

    ...

    ... Sorry, but no need to make the 99% of users who don't need it carry that around so you can save a tiny bit of hassle. ... Or get an adapter with ethernet and SD card slot and HDMI and a few USB-A ports and call it good. Carry it with you in your laptop bag next to your charger. ... MOST users don't need all those ports in random places that aren't where they usually sit and work.

    re: core values - Jobs was about 'think different' and supporting content producers. He prioritized making the best products and championing user experience. Apple has since shifted more towards prioritizing a completely different audience, pop culture (to the detriment to 'think different' and creatives). They also have shifted profits and marketing think in priority over best products and UX. Note, these aren't all or nothing kinds of shifts in most cases, but a matter of what the main driver is.

    re: USB-C - Yes, there is a lot of junk gear out there in a confusing mess. And, if you look closely at your 3,695 'USB-C hubs' you'll notice that not many (any?) are actually USB-C hubs (I only looked at the first few pages). They are actually more like 'docks' where they plug into USB-C and then give a bunch of USB-A ports (or other ports). What I'm talking about is something like the USB-A hubs I have, that plug into USB-A and provide 4-8 USB-A ports. Why are there none of these in USB-C form? Probably because there's not much need for them, as there are very few USB-C devices to plug in. Everyone needs USB-C to a bunch of USB-A ports, because all their devices are USB-A.

    re: industry standards - cf. http://appleinsider.com/articles/17/08/15/psa-thunderbolt-3-cables-longer-than-05m-generally-dont-support-usb-31-speeds or https://marco.org/2017/10/14/impossible-dream-of-usb-c

    re: pros and hassle - I guess this gets back to the question of 'what is pro?' and target markets mentioned above. When you say that 'most people' are you talking about pros who use their laptops in various demanding roles? Or, are you talking more about coffee-shop jockeys who could likely do the same thing with their MacBook Air or MacBook but bought the 'pro' because they are professionals? It's this a bit like saying 'most people' don't even need a Mac and could do fine with an iPad? Sure, but we're talking the pro market here, not 'most people.'

    Yes, some pros don't need the ports, or need a certain port, etc. But, many pros might like to have at least a USB-A port so they don't need an extra dongle for that. I agree that Ethernet is a pretty big port, but I'll bet most pros use it. The saving grace there, is that besides server-room people, I suppose most pros use the laptops at a desk where a dock is often common to get Ethernet. I suppose you're a bit right on video, since there are so many different connection types... but again, that's something a pro would likely use often (like giving presentations).

    The problem with dongles, in my experience, is that they often aren't up to the same quality/reliability as built-in ports, unless you get just the right one (and are quite careful in terms of physical reliability). You end up more like a situation PC people end up in with this dongle not working in that situation, etc. (I think due to different chip-sets used in different dongles.)

    But, again, my argument isn't that many aren't just fine with a couple USB-C ports. My issue is more with it being, suddenly, the only option, even for pro machines. Most people like thin and light... but for pros, those *usually* aren't the top-priority design factors. This is, IMO, what led to the 'trash can' Mac Pro. Great idea, but it wasn't what pros were asking for or prioritizing.
    I disagree with your assessment of Apple's priorities. They've *always* been geared towards making computing accessible by the most people possible, and creating easy to use tools that give users joy. They most certainly are still doing that. I don't know what "pop culture" has to do with anything other than marketing to an entire world full of people. It's always been about marketing (see "Think Different"), and how you can argue against best products and UX when you're looking at the most successful computer company with the best rated/selling products and highest customer sat rating in the world is beyond me. Should Apple go back to building clunky towers for a shrinking minority of the market because that's what you want? Hell no. Yes, they stumbled a bit with some pro hardware, but they're definitely making up for it now. You're looking at things through your own myopic worldview. If it were up to you, Apple would probably be bankrupt long ago.

    "I suppose most pros use the laptops at a desk" ...yes, you're getting it... "where a dock is often common to get Ethernet" — SEE, if you have a desk you work at, you just attach the USB-C adapter to whatever cable you used to stick in your old laptop, and you forget that it's even there! OR get a dock that has every connection you need at work accessible by a single cable, including power. THAT is a benefit to Thunderbolt 3 and USB-C! Traveling workers who need more ports can get one of the multi-port hubs to pack in their bag with their power supply. It's not that hard. Presentations... just watch, as more and more laptops feature USB-C and no HDMI, how many places will already have a USB-C connection available to connect to. IT WILL HAPPEN, and in the interim, the costs are just not that big of a deal.

    Again with the USB-C stuff... You're going to have to just get over it and move on.  I've seen numerous hubs that have a few USB-C ports on them as well, not sure if there's one that goes one USB-C to 4-8 USB-C out ports but I'm not shopping for one. If that doesn't exist yet, I'm sure it'll come. How you can say "there are very few USB-C devices to plug in" after I provided thousands and thousands of examples? You realize the latest Dell XPS (the ones everyone says they're going to go get when they hate on the MBP) have USB-C only now, right? WHAT MORE PROOF DO YOU NEED? 

    USB-A *sucks* as a connector in comparison, and the faster we get rid of it the better. Apple is hastening that movement, which I applaud and fully accept there may be some instance where that is a minor hassle, but most of the complaining come from people making a mountain out of a molehill — tales of large, heavy bags of many dongles that must be lugged everywhere, stuff like that when all one needs is most likely a small hub to go in their bag if they happen to need whatever random connectors on a regular basis for work. Meanwhile the rest of us will march into the future where more and more connectors move to USB-C and we can get on with the next generation of connectivity instead of pandering to large, slow, old, unidirectional, myriad connectors.

    Marco makes some good points, but it's one of the growing pains of this sort of transition, and I'd say the longterm benefits far outweigh the costs. It's also one of the problems of open industry standards — anyone can build a cable or adapter, which leads to your problem with adapters. Look at all the garbage lightning connectors/splitters out there that barely work with the iPhone, if they do at all. Do you hate Lightning too because of it? Just take care in what you're buying. It'll get better. We will move on to a better future without USB-A, and it won't hurt nearly as badly as some people would like to convince everyone else it will.

    I know what you and the vocal minority want from Apple — a 17" matte screened behemoth laptop with SATA and removable memory and every single port and card slot under the sun and eSATA and optical and and and... If the dinosaurs had their way, we'd still have four flavors of SCSI ports, terminators, ADB... It's time to move on. Everyone else is, with or without you.

  • Reply 44 of 44
    cgWerkscgWerks Posts: 1,893member
    fastasleep said:
    I disagree with your assessment of Apple's priorities. ... I don't know what "pop culture" has to do with anything other than marketing to an entire world full of people. ... and how you can argue against best products and UX when you're looking at the most successful computer company with the best rated/selling products and highest customer sat rating in the world is beyond me.

    ...

    Presentations... just watch, as more and more laptops feature USB-C and no HDMI, how many places will already have a USB-C connection available to connect to.

    ...

    ... not sure if there's one that goes one USB-C to 4-8 USB-C out ports but I'm not shopping for one. If that doesn't exist yet, I'm sure it'll come.

    ...

    USB-A *sucks* as a connector in comparison, and the faster we get rid of it the better. ... Meanwhile the rest of us will march into the future where more and more connectors move to USB-C and we can get on with the next generation of connectivity instead of pandering to large, slow, old, unidirectional, myriad connectors.

    ...

    I know what you and the vocal minority want from Apple — a 17" matte screened behemoth laptop with SATA and removable memory and every single port and card slot under the sun and eSATA and optical and and and... If the dinosaurs had their way, we'd still have four flavors of SCSI ports, terminators, ADB... It's time to move on. Everyone else is, with or without you.
    re: pop-culture - the problem is that pop-culture is antithetical to 'think different' and good design. It's fashion (flavor of the week) instead of style or timeless. There have been a lot of popular products that haven't been the best or had top UX. Success isn't necessarily an indicator. Apple had the best products and UX back when Windows machines outnumbered them by a massive ratio. But, I'm also arguing that Apple is going to lose that top spot and reputation if they don't stick to your foundations... it is a bit part of what got them there.

    re: presentations - I don't think there is a simple solution there, but I've heard many places don't even have HDMI yet (still VGA), so I think it will be a long, long time until they have USB-C. But, HDMI is probably the biggest current 'standard' you'd find.

    re: USB-C hub - I think the reason there aren't 4-8 port USB-C hubs, is that there isn't much demand. Who has 4-8 USB-C devices to plug in? They all have a bunch of USB-A stuff. I'm not opposed to 'marching into the future,' I'm just stating the reality. From what I can see, it's going to be a somewhat long, painful transition so it would be nice if Apple took that into consideration, especially on pro products.

    re: vocal minority want - You might have described some, but not me. 15" is fine for mobile. I'll plug into displays at my desk. I don't need SATA, removable memory, or every single port and card slot. But, I do think at least one model in the pro lineup should have a few of the common ports w/o dongles, and that thin and light should be the primary design factor for that model, but user needs. That might not even be the model I'd personally buy, but I think it should exist.

    What Apple seems to have done is target the entire lineup towards one user-type, just with different amounts of money.
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