Monday, June 25, 2012

Microsoft Surface no iPad killer!

The real issue is the media, every few months we have "new iPad killer" or "new iPhone killer", being announced by the tech Media. Lets have a look at the track record of the media in this regard: The Kin was meant to be the next iPhone killer, and after 7 billion dollars (yes thats a real figure) of Microsoft R & D and marketing, the "iPhone killer" was withdrawn from sales after 90 days, they couldn't even give them away to Microsoft employees. The playbook was meant to be the next iPad killer, its dead and millions of dollars lost, the HP web os was also meant to do the same, didn't even last a month. The zune was meant to be an iPod killer... its dead, and millions in losses again despite Microsoft pushing it for years and years with no real sales that even made a dint in real market share. 

I get sick of hearing the next apple killer product is here, and yet when one does some little analysis on the product it self , in this case the surface, its hap hazard design, its confusing two model , not compatible with each other hardware and software, and Microsoft's insistence on only selling in online for the world, and in Microsoft only stores in the USA (just like the zune, strategy, cause that sales strategy worked so well for it last time), one can clearly see that this product is not destined to sell any real numbers, and is more of a prototype or a idea for other OEMS to follow perhaps... but iPad killer... no way in a frozen snow flake in hell is it that. 

I am all for competition, for if you don't have it in the IT industry you get things like Windows and all the very boring and non inspiring plastic cheap rubbish laptops and desktop PC's that all the Microsoft OEM's make. There are many things in the current iOS that have been borrowed from Android that help us Apple users have a better experience (though I would argue they borrowed more than their fair share from iOS). The next Windows 8 phones do look good and its OS is a bright light in the "copy cat" smart phone operating systems of late, however that brand new Windows 7 phone you bought on the weekend, hope you like its operating system for the next two years of your contract, as it WILL NOT run Windows 8 phone software, AS NO phone currently released will run windows 8 OS phones, (way to shaft your user base). 

Thus all I am saying put things into perspective, take a look at the history and track record of the media and Microsoft in particular, once you do that, it makes it hard to believe that Microsoft has released anything of real note or impact, once again.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

iPads in Education

I found this today, it was in a presentation I attended on the Gold Coast , about people saying iPads are a waste of time in the classroom, promoted this bit of research....

From a book by Dr. David Thornburg called, “Edutrends 2010: Restructuring, Technology, and the Future of Education.” Starsong Publications, 1992.(Yes, 1992 is right!)  The statements are about the reluctance to accept new technology in education.  Here are a couple

*               “Students today can’t prepare bark to calculate their problems.  They depend on their slates which are more expensive.  What will they do when the slate is dropped and it breaks?  They will be unable to write!”  -  Teacher’s Conference in 1703

*               “Students today depend upon paper too much. They don’t know how to write on a slate without getting chalk dust all over themselves. They can’t clean a slate properly. What will they do when they run out of paper?” Principals Association, 1815

*               “Students today depend too much upon ink.  They don’t
know how to use a pen knife to sharpen a pencil.  Pen and ink will
never replace the pencil.”  - National Association of Teachers in 1907

*              “Ballpoint pens will be the ruin of education in our
country.  Students use these devices and then throw them away.  The
American values of thrift and frugality are being discarded.  Business
and banks will never allow such expensive luxuries.”  - Federal
Teachers in 1950

*              You can’t use those calculators on the test.  If I let you do that, you wouldn’t ever learn how to use the tables in the back of the book and use interpolation to figure out your trig ratios.”  - High School Math Teacher in 1980

*             “Why would you ever want the Internet for student use? It’s just the latest fad – have them use the library.”  - District Employee in 1995

*             “Teachers will never use email.”  - Teacher on a
District Committee in 1996

*             “Why are we talking about students having laptops in high school?  I don’t think most parents will even give their kids their old computer, much less buy them a new one.”  Member of Laptop Committee in 2000

*             “Turn off and put away all Cell Phones, iPods, and Electronic Devices during class!”  - Signs around AHS in Fall 2006

*             "Students who are continually allowed to do word processing on a computer are not given enough handwriting practice.  Without practice using pencils and pens, students’ handwriting will become illegible.  Handwritten work should continue to be an essential part of a student’s education.  What happens when there is no computer available?"  , a quote at a Educational Conference in Australia 2009