Friday, March 9, 2012
Thursday, March 8, 2012
Apple iPad (2012) The iPad's new screen is a stunner. That's really all you need to know about the new iPad (yes, that's the name). That, and a reminder that pricing still starts at $499 for a 16GB Wi-Fi model, with 4G starting at $629.
Forget all of the minor tweaks and incremental updates Apple has made to its third-generation tablet. The faster processor, the upgrade to 4G data, the improved camera--it's all housekeeping. It's the stuff it had to do. It's the stuff any manufacturer could have done.
Now, increasing the iPad's screen resolution to 2,048x1,536 pixels that exceeds any current tablet or laptop--that's a move only Apple has the scale and industry muscle to pull off. At this point, if Apple decides that the next iPad will be made from unicorn tears, I wouldn't bet against it.
But in this pre-unicorn era, we're stuck with the new iPad and a design that is virtually indistinguishable from 2011's iPad 2. The tablet's glass and aluminum construction is still 9.5 inches tall and 7.31 inches wide. Thickness is now 0.37 inch, weighing in at 1.5 pounds. You get the same home button on the bottom of the screen, and a volume rocker on the right side along with the mute switch/rotation lock. Up top you have the sleep/wake button and headphone output, and the bottom edge retains the 30-pin port.
Related stories All of CNET's iPad coverage (roundup) New iPad: What we didn't get Apple iPad with Retina Display makes its debut What 4G LTE means for the iPad Apple iOS 5.1 hands on New Apple TV announced at iPad event Apple knocked the camera quality up to 5-megapixel with 1080p video recording and backside illumination. The front-facing camera remains the same.
The screen Remember the first time you saw an HD television? You were probably excited about the future but also a little sad that your current TV's days were numbered. For tablet fans, a glance at the iPad's new screen may offer this same emotional cocktail of envy and loss.
But what did you expect? You take a product that is 90 percent screen and a company hangs its reputation on making the prettiest products around, and you're bound to arrive at this: the point when Apple ruins other screens for you.
And let's be clear, here. Not only does the new iPad's QXGA screen wreck your expectations for tablet screens, but your laptop or desktop computer screen will also look shabby by comparison. If you think I'm making too much of it, you can see for yourself soon enough. But as you find yourself wandering the Apple Store aisles wringing your hands together, whispering, "My precious," don't say I didn't warn you.
Now, this isn't the first time Apple has played the resolution card with its product announcements. With the advent of the iPhone 4, Apple introduced its Retina Display, boasting a 960x640-pixel resolution that was remarkable at the time. But for all its beauty, the experience of looking at a 3.5-inch screen compared with the new iPad's 9.7-inch screen is like comparing a keyhole with a window.
iPhoto comes to Apple's third-generation iPad.
(Credit: Josh Lowensohn/CNET) As such, they lend themselves to different content. A Facebook update is no more convenient on an iPad 3 than on any smartphone, but the Maps app on the iPad confers a feeling of omnipotence no other mobile device can match. Games, movies, photos, and magazines all take on a realism that seems almost absurd on a handheld device. It's only a matter of time before someone gets motion sickness from this thing.
What else is new? OK, enough of my love poem for the iPad's new screen. Apple made a few other notable (if predictable) improvements to the iPad.
The iPad's processor has been upgraded to an A5X. While the CPU remains dual-core, the graphics processor has been beefed up to quad-core. This seems to be a necessary measure for juggling four times the pixels of the previous model.
I never thought the idea of Siri on the iPad was as natural a fit as it is for the iPhone. Luckily, Apple feels the same way. While Siri won't be coming to the iPad, voice dictation will. That said, voice dictation on a tablet still strikes me as weird. I'm assuming you won't jog with your iPad and want to transcribe your every brilliant utterance, the way you would with an iPhone. Also, if someone asks you where to find great Thai food nearby, your phone is likely to be your first point of reference. Still, voice dictation is a welcome addition, and I suspect it will come in handy for dictating e-mails and bypassing the touch-screen keyboard when searching for information online.
I still contend that it's a bit silly waving a tablet around to capture photos and video, but I understand the counterpoint and I'll admit that the iPad's screen makes a better display than any camera or smartphone.
Checking out CNET's site on the new iPad.
(Credit: Josh Lowensohn/CNET) Bluetooth 4.0 is another feature that has trickled over from the iPhone 4S. With it comes the promise of one-touch pairing, and huge improvements in battery efficiency.
And finally, for all of you jet-setting, mobile-data-devouring types, the iPad is now available in a 4G LTE model. Prices for 16GB, 32GB, and 64GB come in at $629, $729, and $829, respectively.
What's missing? As far as disappointments go, Apple could have been more aggressive with its processor performance, or perhaps brought the iPad's cameras up to iPhone 4S specs. Perhaps it could have gone thinner or done more to extend its lead in battery life, which Apple claims is still 10 hours, or 9 hours on 4G.
Heck, let's also throw in the age-old complaints about Apple's reluctance to include microSD memory expansion, a dedicated port for video output, or a truly universal charging connection. Oh yeah, and Adobe Flash support while you're at it.
Personally, there's really nothing I can point to and say, "Apple has clearly doomed itself." The company took its already excellent product and updated it with a gorgeous screen.
I suppose the only missed opportunity I can point to is the lack of a Kindle-priced competitor. The rumor mill suggests that Apple may release a smaller tablet later this year, but until then, it seems that Apple's only answer to the budget tablet craze is its $199 Apple iPod Touch.
Buy it or skip it? If you have an original iPad, by all means upgrade to the iPad 3. The used market for first-generation iPads is still alive and well and will hopefully afford you at least $100 toward the new iPad that is nearly half the thickness and four times the pixels as the original iPad.
2. I’m Not Me 3:37
3. Hold It to the Fire 3:41
4. Everyone Can’t Be Confused 3:01
5. Temporary 3:40
6. Are You Free 3:14
7. It’s Frightening 2:51
8. Danny Come Inside 4:21
9. Back for More 4:05
10. The Day You Won the War 3:20
11. I Had It Coming 4:08
Tuesday, March 6, 2012
Tracklist: 01. Little Shocks (3:44)
02. On The Run (4:10)
03. Heard It Break (3:09)
04. Kinda Girl You Are (2:38)
05. Starts With Nothing (5:33)
06. When All Is Quiet (3:29)
07. Cousin In The Bronx (3:35)
08. Things Change (3:47)
09. Man On Mars (3:44)
10. Problem Solved (3:03)
11. Can\’t Mind My Own Business (3:50)
12. Child Of The Jago (4:43)
13. If You Will Have Me (3:23)
Damn, our 44 presidents have had some sweet names.
(However you feel about Barack Obama as a politician, he at least has restored the tradition of awesomely monikered commanders in chief after the Bush-Clinton-Bush trifecta of meh.)
And then, after drinking a little more, we had a profound revelation:
Quite a few of our former POTUSes (POTI?) -- especially the more forgettable chaps from the 19th century -- have names like expensive, hard-to-find boutique bourbons.
This is not to be confused with former presidents with names that sound like variations on the martini (the Calvin Coolidge) or sex acts that no one has ever tried (the Warren G. Harding).
James Buchanan, Fifteenth President (1857-1861)After the jump, the official Gut Check ranking of the ten former U.S. presidents who could be mistaken for boutique bourbons, with tasting notes.
All tasting notes are taken from the official White House website.
10. James Buchanan
Tasting notes: tall, stately, stiffly formal.
9. James Garfield
Tasting notes: a measure of prestige, [but] mortally wounded.
8. James K. Polk
Tasting notes: studious and industrious, the last of the Jacksonians.
7. Millard Fillmore
Tasting notes: methodical industry and some competence; uninspiring.
6. Franklin Pierce
Tasting notes: a true "dark horse"; grief stricken...nervously exhausted.
5. Chester A. Arthur
Tasting notes: dignified, tall, and handsome; suffering from a fatal kidney disease.
4. Grover Cleveland
Tasting notes: single-minded concentration.
3. William Henry Harrison
Tasting notes: a simple frontier Indian fighter.
2. Rutherford B. Hayes
Tasting notes: dignity, honesty, and moderate reform.
1. Martin Van Buren
Tasting notes: trim and erect; impeccable appearance.
The present study explores the dramatic projection of one's own views onto those of Jesus among conservative and liberal American Christians. In a large-scale survey, the relevant views that each group attributed to a contemporary Jesus differed almost as much as their own views. Despite such dissonance-reducing projection, however, conservatives acknowledged the relevant discrepancy with regard to "fellowship" issues (e.g., taxation to reduce economic inequality and treatment of immigrants) and liberals acknowledged the relevant discrepancy with regard to "morality" issues (e.g., abortion and gay marriage). However, conservatives also claimed that a contemporary Jesus would be even more conservative than themselves on the former issues whereas liberals claimed that Jesus would be even more liberal than themselves on the latter issues. Further reducing potential dissonance, liberal and conservative Christians differed markedly in the types of issues they claimed to be more central to their faith. A concluding discussion considers the relationship between individual motivational processes and more social processes that may underlie the present findings, as well as implications for contemporary social and political conflict.And from Science's Editor's Choice:
Conservatives rated Jesus as being more in favor of higher taxes on the wealthy and more opposed to gay marriage than they themselves were, with an opposite pattern for liberals. By placing more weight on issues on which they projected Jesus as being more extreme than themselves, individuals on both sides of the spectrum were able to reduce dissonance, which might be better characterized as social rather than cognitive, owing to the collective nature of religion.Those posturing with rock solid religious beliefs never seem to be bothered with inconsistencies between their own views and that of their religion. Based upon such a study, this could be because they pick and choose whatever fits best. Jesus, à la carte.