So Macworld events and speakers have been announced… and I’m wondering why the heck is Kevin Smith presenting? Disney did retain control of the Miramax name and film library (including Smith’s Clerks & Chasing Amy) when they split with the Weinstein brothers last year, though his films have yet to show up on iTunes. Is this part of an Apple movie push in support of iTunes, iTV, and perhaps a larger movie-centric iPod? Or am I reading to much into this and event sponsor IDG is just looking for some entertaining speakers?
Archives For Apple
In two separate incidents, digital music players have recently shipped with Windows malware payloads. I don’t even know where to begin. Mistakes happen, but this boggles the mind.
My first question is: Was this malicious or accidental? An accident is more likely preventable, while a malicious act is probably harder to block. Dabbling in computer security, I’ve always emphasized the biggest risk is internal (disgruntled employees or those on a competitor’s payroll) and have lobbied for ‘red teams’ to hash out potential vectors and strategies to minimize exposure.
It’s nice to see Apple owning up, but publicly calling out MS is somewhat unprofessional. As a Mac user (in addition to PC and Linux), I dread the day when OS X comes under attack… Apple is basically asking for it. (See Mac videos for more examples: one, two)
Apple writes: We recently discovered that a small number of the Video iPods available for purchase after September 12, 2006, left our contract manufacturer carrying the Windows RavMonE.exe virus. As you might imagine, we are upset at Windows for not being more hardy against such viruses, and even more upset with ourselves for not catching it.
Engadget writes: McDonald’s and Coca-Cola recently teamed up in Japan to give away 10,000 self-branded MP3 players pre-loaded with 10 spankin’ new tunes and… some delicious malware. It seems that a “portion” of the players sport a variant of the QQPass family of trojan horses which capture passwords and other personal information when the MP3 player is plugged into the users’ PC. The code then proceeds to email the details to the author.
So let’s review… T-Mobile’s rendition of the HTC Excalibur, branded “Dash”, hits the streets next week and kicks butt if you can put up with Windows Mobile and EDGE. Neither TiVo nor Sling put Apple fanboys first, but both will be offering support in the “near future” — if I were a gambling man, and sometimes I am, Sling’s will hit first. Both the Neuros OSD and ITVN devices caught my eye and I’m working on getting review boxes. Sony got my attention with their new LocationFree line (including receiver!) and electronic book Reader. Several of the savviest people I spoke to at the show had very positive things to say about Infrant‘s network-attached servers for media hosting. I’d like to get my hands on one, though Seagate’s rep offered me any product in their catalog. Hm! Pepper Pad still doesn’t do it for me, and neither do voice-powered remote controls.
No show is complete without tons of schwag! Most of it is junk, but I did see (and collect) some notable items. Palm and TiVo had the best stuff. At their 680 press event, Palm gave away gift bags including a 1GB SD card, nice notebook and pen, and a non-slip dashboard pad — Treo not included. TiVo had goodies too, and I don’t think they were limited to VIPs (bonus!): TiVo bubbles, mints, stuffed dolls, KidZone lanyards, and sturdy nylon sackpacks. The Alienware bag had a throwaway t-shirt and mouse pad, but they kindly included a nice leather luggage tag which I will use. Over at ShowStoppers I ended up with a 256MB Kensington USB stick, Linksys/Cisco mini screwdriver thingy, and a glowing pen from TeleNav. I thought Movielink’s boxes of popcorn were clever (and a fine source of blogging sustenance).
After the jump, check out a few more pics from the show…
DigitalLife officially kicks off in NYC today. Unlike CES which is industry oriented, DL caters to gadget loving consumers. There will be plenty of opportunity to play with all sorts of stuff (they even have video game tourneys), so if you’re near NYC anytime until the 15th pick up your free tickets and get down here. If the quantity of email and calls I’ve been receiving is any indication, this year’s event is much larger than prior events and looks to be a good time.
Like most bloggers, I do have a day job and I’m into negative PTO these days… So we’ll just have to see how much I can cram into only 9 hours on the ground. To maximize my limited time, I probably won’t be updating ZNF as frequently the last time I journeyed north.
I don’t imagine we’ll see many (any?) product announcements today, though there have been rumors a new Treo will be unveiled. I plan to spend a decent amount of time with various portable devices, check out the home media hardware, and see if Orb will finally reveal their business model. Obviously, I’ll be dropping by the TiVo booth (last year I got fresh with their mascot) and I intend to hook up with the Sling guys who’ll be roaming the floor. But wait, there’s more! I also have two classified meetings, and several interesting people to touch base with… so stay tuned.
The eagle has landed: I’m all checked in and ready to go! I’ll hit the floor as soon as my hot date, Peter Rojas, arrives. Peter, of course, founded both Gizmodo and Engadget and now you can see him weekly on TV.
I just got off the phone with the Sling PR folks and have confirmed the current version of SlingPlayer Mobile for Smartphones is not compatible with the T-Mobile Dash (likely my next phone, despite the lack of EVDO). Sling is aware of issue and already has a beta build in testing for release in the “near future.” Once distributed, the updated software will also have improved support for all Windows Mobile devices.
And yes, a publicly available version of the Mac SlingPlayer is still slated for release this month!