Friday, February 23, 2007

iPhone Deal Unprecedented?

By now we've all heard about Apple and Cisco agreeing to "share" the iPhone trademark. I'm not at all surprised that a deal was reached, even if it did take much longer than expected. What I'm wondering is this: has there ever been another case of a company (Cisco) agreeing to let another company (Apple) use its trademark to identify a product so similar to its own? I'm an unabashed Apple lover and Steve Jobs fan, but I'm shocked that he has this much clout or could pull this off. I mean, he basically got Chambers et al. to pseudo-abandon the trademark, which Cisco clearly owned. Anyone know of any similar cases where this sort of agreement has been reached?

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

WalMart Video: DOA?

The webosphere was abuzz today, with the news of WalMart releasing a video download service. According to the write up over at TechCrunch, it looks like someone forgot to test the CSS on Firefox. Simply amazing! Then again, does it really matter anyway? Didn't they learn their lesson with the music downloads? It doesn't matter if you can sell a movie for $0.02 less than your competitor (using the term very loosely here), if you can't match or beat Apple's ecosystem then you might as well throw in the towel. When are these people going to get it?

Google Reader Updated?

I have been happily using Google Reader as my primary feed reader since its rebirth last year. I've been impressed with the responsiveness of the app, and while it hasn't always performed like a desktop counterpart, it's been pretty good. During the last several days, however, Reader has been cutting through my feeds like a hot knife through butter. It seems much more responsive now that it ever has at any point. I have not made any modifications to my MacMini, OS X or Firefox 2.01, which I use to browse my feeds. Does anyone know if the Reader team snuck in an update and hasn't told anyone?

Monday, February 05, 2007

Super Bowl XLI: Decent Game, Bad Ads

So, the big game was mildly entertaining. Most Super Bowls don't live up to the massive hype machine that grows over the two week wait between the Conference Championship games and the Super Bowl itself-and Super Bowl XLI was no different. It was an OK game, but it was nothing great. Usually, however, one can count on the commercials being as or more entertaining than the game. In fact, some folks watch the game solely for the clever advertising and "flip-a-coin-maybe-good-maybe-bad" half time show. Now that the game is over and I have seen all of the commercials, I can honestly say that this year's crop of ads was among the worst I've ever seen. Sure, there was some novelty with Doritos and the NFL giving us user-generated content. I applaud them for taking a risk and being the first, and certainly not the last, companies to capitalize on the YouTube phenomenon. But even those commercials were average at best. was unusually conservative and boring with their annual ad. Maybe I've just let my expectations get way out of whack or maybe there's something to my rant. Anyone else feel like they were let down this year?