Barenaked Ladies at WWDC

Barenaked Ladies played a private concert at Yerba Buena Gardens for the WWDC Bash — formerly known as the Campus Bash. Every year Apple schedules a band and keeps it a secret until they take the stage. Prior year bands have included the Wallflowers and Ozomatli. The Bash used to be held at the Apple Campus. When Apple moved WWDC to the Moscone in San Francisco they continued the tradition by chartering a hundred busses to drive 5000 people to San Jose. After a couple years of this the Bash was moved to Yerba Buena Gardens.

Barenaked Ladies showed themselves to be real geeks as well as fans of the Mac. They changed the words to several of their popular songs for the target demographic.

Why is Apple Changing .Mac to MobileMe?

This week at WWDC Apple announced the replacement for .Mac called MobileMe. With this change comes a new graphical UI on the web page, hooks for Windows and Mac users, and the new domain name(s). Apple has bought mobileme.com and me.com. If you are a current .Mac user you will be given a choice of keeping your current email address or migrating over to the new me.com address space. It is not clear what will happen to your current mac.com address should you choose to migrate. So, why did Apple make this change? Why not just release the new features on the old branding?

The answer is simple – target audience. I have been a .Mac subscriber since the day it was announced. I immediately grabbed my current .Mac email address and currently use it for iChat and for some email. Because my email address is so easy to guess it is inundated daily with so much spam that it is virtually useless for email — don’t bother emailing me there. Whenever I give someone my .Mac email address for iChat they immediately know that it is a “mac thing”. That immediately sets the target audience to just Mac users. By rebranding the product Apple can relaunch it and target the vast audience of users of iTunes. Those users can get all of the features of the new product line and not have a mac.

For me I plan to switch over to the new namespace when it becomes available next month even if it mean abandoning my current mac.com address.

Introducing the iHanger

So you have your new iPhone or iPod Touch and you want to watch a movie. You have to find a way to hold your screen at just the right distance and in the right rotation. You end up holding your phone in your hand in the claw posture. This gets very uncomfortable on a transcontinental flight. You could use one of the myriad kickstand products on the market and set your phone on the tray table in front of you. I think I have come up with a better way.

By taking an ordinary metal coat hanger and bending it just right I am able to use the seat-back in front of me and a view screen. The result is a very comfortable viewing experience. I have used it already on several flights.

You start with a piece of coat hanger wire about 10 inches long. Fold the wire in half. Then bend the wire again to form a pair of “legs” with the las quarter in turned up for the “feet”. Now you can adjust the angle of the “knees” to set your viewing angle. You set your phone on the “shins” part of the legs.

Now take the back part of the contraption and tuck it into one of the folds of the headrest in front of you. If there is no headrest you can add an additional bend upwards and hang the gizmo off the toggle that holds the tray table up.

Now you can enjoy your movie and the optimal viewing height. If you checked out seatguru.com before you left they you have seat power to keep your iPod charged for the whole flight.

I’ve been looking around for such a commercial product and I have not seen it yet. The closest I have seen so far is the http://gorillapod.com.