A cartoonist's review of his magical space car

The Oatmeal has a cartoon/article – “What it’s like to own a Tesla Model S – A cartoonist’s review of his magical space car”.

Now, I love The Oatmeal. Funny stuff. And I like the idea of a Tesla (never driven one so I can’t say much more than that). But his love of his Tesla may be blinding him to some things.

He says:

After seven months and 4,000+ miles, any “range anxiety” i used to have has been completely quelled.

Of course it has. If you are only driving an average of 19 miles a day, there’s no need for range anxiety.

I use Tesla’s supercharger stations if I’m planning a long trip.

If he’s only driven 4K miles in seven months, what would he define as a “long trip”?

I have the 85kwh battery which I can go up to 260 miles on a single charge.

I don’t know about any of you but I would regularly drive that far on my motorcycle just to go get coffee. 500-600 miles/day were not unusual. In a car, I could do that “charge distance” several times in one day.

My Model S can go from 0-60 in five seconds.

That is great acceleration but my motorcycle did it in 3.8. 🙂

I want an app that makes race car noises when I accelerate.

You know what makes race car noises when you accelerate? A fucking race car…

In referring to a friend who has solar panels on his house and, therefore, his Tesla is being being charged via sunlight:

What I find insanely wonderful about this is that technically my friend is now driving a car which is powered by the motherfucking sun.

Yeah. Technically, WE ALL ARE.

In a knock ostensibly directed at the internal combustion engine:

It’s like driving around in a miniature power plant, or owning a television set that needs to be topped off and then pull started.

Wait…WTF? Your Tesla has a “miniature power plant” in it and it most certainly needs to be topped off – and even more frequently (and more slowly) than a gasoline powered car.

Don’t get me wrong – I know electric cars are our future and, for the most part, I welcome that future. But I’m also a realist and don’t want people to think it’s all going to be all candy canes and lollipops.

Would I buy a Tesla? No. At $70,000, there are cars that are just as good performance wise that will take me on much longer trips than a Tesla.

Apple tries to Clean Up its Carbon-Spewing Ways


It’s an unusual trip in that its point is to give a reporter exposure to the way Apple works, a departure from the company’s usual maniacal secrecy. But when it comes to the environment, Apple consciously carves out an exception to its standard opacity.

Steven Levy got the grand tour of Apple’s newest data center a few miles outside Reno.

The good news in his article?:

Apple is close to its goal of powering all its facilities 100 percent by renewable energy. Its corporate campuses and data centers are now at 94 percent renewable and rising. (In 2010 it was 35 percent.) The next step is to extend the efforts to its retail stores.

The bad news?:

In this accounting, Apple does not include the manufacturing, transport, and use of its actual products, which accounts for 98 percent of its carbon footprint.

They have a LONG way to go. But at least, they are moving in the right direction.

The "Macumentary"

Way back in the mists of (internet) time, I did a show out of a professional studio in White Rock, BC with a crew of old school radio guys. I found a co-host at a MUG meeting and “The Mac Show” was born. I’d been doing a “broadcast” for several years before meeting these guys but it was definitely not as good as what it eventually became.

We had a great time and the radio guys taught me a lot about how to do things properly. It’s a real shame the relationship fell apart.

A show listener and professional videographer, Adam Tinkoff, pitched the idea of this “macumentary” to us and MacAddict magazine. This video was included on the magazine’s CD-Rom (remember when magazines would give those out?) in August 2001.

I Nearly Destroyed This Dragster And Now I Respect Drag Racing


Let’s just get this out of the way right off the bat: I’m an idiot. I’m a big dumb idiot who made a stupid mistake and got lucky that something really bad didn’t happen. I’m hoping I can use my idiocy for some good, though, and dispel some myths about drag racing. Because drag racing deserves your respect.

“I Nearly Destroyed This Dragster And Now I Respect Drag Racing”

Leaving aside the issue of, “you should have respected them BEFORE, asshole” – I mean, you have to respect someone insane enough to get behind the wheel of a top fuel dragster, sit in front of a engine that generates approximately 7,000 horsepower, accelerates from a standstill to 100 miles per hour (160 km/h) in as little as 0.8 seconds, has a top speed that exceeds 300mph and subjects the driver to an average force of about 4.0 G over the duration of the race. (wikipedia stats)

So yeah – you better respect these guys.

But the story is still a good one. The writer makes the same mistakes many of us would have when faced with such an insane situation without the years of training a drag racer goes through.

Memories of Steve

Don Melton posts his Memories of Steve:

I have no plans to watch that new movie about Steve Jobs. As I have no plans to read Walter Isaacson’s biography of him.

It’s not because I think those efforts are somehow not worthy of his memory. It’s just that I have my own recollections of the man. And I’m very jealous in guarding them. I don’t want those few and fleeting memories fractured and confused by other people’s interpretations.

Consider that a fair warning, because I’d like to recount a few of my own stories about Steve here. Not only for you, but for myself. Because maybe in the process I can remember him better.

Yukari Iwatani Kane's "Haunted Empire" is as bad as you've heard.

I read the first paragraph of this except on Re/code and it literally stopped me in my tracks. I had to reread it several times to make absolutely sure I was getting the full effect of The Stupid. Here it is:

On the evening after the first iPhone went on sale, a couple dozen visiting designers from Samsung were dining at a Korean barbecue restaurant in San Francisco called Hanuri when a friend showed up with the device. The phone was locked, so the designers couldn’t see the home screen or open the applications. But it didn’t matter. They were impressed enough with the sleekness of the device and the elegant ease of swiping their finger to pull up the pass-code screen. They oohed and aahed as they made the gesture over and over again. They had never seen anything like it.

Do you see the problem?

Supposedly, a “friend” showed up with a brand new (it had gone on say that very day) iPhone. If that was the case, why couldn’t they unlock the phone? Where was the friend? Why couldn’t he do it? Wouldn’t he let them? Was it stolen? If they had access to the phone and access to the friend, WHY COULDN’T THEY USE THE PHONE!?

How does such an obvious oddity in storytelling get past the writer and any number of editors and fact checkers?

BTW, I read the rest of the excerpt so you don’t have to. Don’t bother.

A (bad) MacWorld/iWorld 2014 Expo Hall wrap-up

The Powerpage has been around a long time. Which begs the question – has it always been this clueless? (spoiler: yes)

Tom Hesser posted his MacWorld/iWorld 2014 Expo Hall wrap-up (let’s just ignore the intercap W because…sigh…) on Tuesday – a short three days after the show closes. Perhaps he banged his head in the interim. It would explain why he says:

The first day, Wednesday, was my traditional walk around the show floor.

The show floor opened on Thursday.

Hesser mentions some missing vendors like Mophie without pointing out Mophie had already attended (the much bigger) CES show in the iLounge Pavilion.

It would be interesting to find out if there were specific reasons for some of these changes or it was just a matter of timing. The Expo, occurring much later in the year than normal, may have had some affect on attendance.

Yes, it would. Did you ask them? Have you sent an email or called any of the companies you mentioned asking them why they didn’t attend Macworld Expo this year?

In regards to the software developer section, Hesser says:

these areas are populated by cylindrical kiosks that can accommodate one company/developer per side…

I’m no geometry whiz but…how many sides does a cylinder have?

In response to why Hesser believed these small kiosks were popular, he says:

This area was created as the result of a couple of factors. One, the economy was cutting tech budgets, but not conference booth fees. After 2009 when Apple dropped out of Macworld Expo, vendor attendance began to drop off…Smaller spaces meant a lower priced option and the return of smaller vendors.

True. But, if that’s the case, why wouldn’t the vendors who had been there in the past taken up residence in those spaces? If it was simply a cost measure, you’d think the companies who left after Apple did would come back, wouldn’t they?

Yes – If it was only about costs. The lack of vendor attendance is about a lot of issues – cost only being one.

This year saw a number of new developers as well as some well-known ones who seem to have elected for the smaller, cheaper spaces

Hesser either doesn’t know or ignores the fact IDG has, in the past, restricted these small booths to developers who hadn’t attended the show in previous years. These booths were smaller and cheaper and designed to tease developers and companies to come to the show. They also wouldn’t allow vendors to show in that small space two years running. Obviously, with companies like AgileBits, Readdle, and BusyMac there, IDG has changed that policy. I wonder why that would be? (actually, no I don’t…)

I could list a ton of products old, new, or improved that I saw, but that would be a bit crazy.

Umm…why would that be crazy?

…throughout the show flow.


The people are still there, but in fewer numbers.

That’s just shitty writing. And it’s what you get when you send the “West Coast Correspondant” to the show.

Sad little "Macworld/iWorld 2014 in pictures" slideshow

Macworld/iWorld 2014 in pictures

Macworld|iWorld is a three day event. Macworld magazine (owned by the same company that runs the expo show and conference), could only manage to post less than 20 pictures of the show.

The picture above (slide #2) is representative of the show and the coverage. The caption is, “Taken one hour before the show floor opened to the general public. As the minutes tick away, hundreds of people gather at the entrance.”


Note also that Macworld the magazine can’t even get the name of Macworld|iWorld correct.

Slide #7: “The company made its debut with a small, non-descript booth at last year’s Macworld/iWorld. A lot has changed in a year.” Look at that picture. It seems like it now just a larger but still non-descript booth.

Slide #10: A windows manufacturer. No, not as in Personal Computers. As in real life windows for your home. WHY!? Why are they at the show? Why has not one single member of the circle jerking Mac Media gone up to them and asked that very simple question?

There is no iWatch


Make no mistake, Apple has evaluated, designed, and strongly considered variations of a smart watch, but the tech media is blowing up with absolute certainty that “the iWatch” will be released. It won’t. The is no iWatch. I’m not saying it will never be released, but not in 2014, and likely not for at least a handful of years after that, if ever.

Apple is going to build and create the infrastructure and foundation for other companies to create the actual wearable.

Much like CarPlay, Apple won’t make the car but they will make the base software that allows the technology – whether it be health, fitness or “fun” related – to be installed on the third party device.

Back Up Your Computer in Three Ways


For years, everyone has told you that you should be backing up your computer on a regular schedule — even though it’s a pain to do so — lest you lose precious data to a crash, to malware, to theft or just irreversible failure. But everyone has been wrong. In fact, you should back up your computer in three different ways, continuously. And it is easier than ever to do.

We harp on backups all the time but it’s because we’ve lost important data and don’t want the same to happen to you.