What's wrong with Apple's new 12-inch MacBook Air

Besides a new look for the front of the computer, the entire unibody has been revamped from the keyboard to the trackpad to the speakers. Taking cues from the 12-inch PowerBook introduced by Steve Jobs over a decade ago, the new keyboard sits edge-to-edge across the width of the laptop. In addition to going edge-to-edge, the entire key set has been subtly redesigned so that each key sits noticeably closer together.

Image Source: 9 to 5 Mac

What looks odd to me about this image is that the Power button is on the top left corner. If this rumor is true, I would question Apple as to why would you replace the 'esc' key which has a far more prominent use being the first key on the top.

I can blindly hit the top left of the key as the first attempt to stop whatever process is going on.  Narrow keys are easy to adjust; it would take about a week for me to get use to it. Bu this now means I have to train myself all over again to hit the 'esc' key precisely. 

Apart from that, doing away with all the ports and having just two, one for headphones jack and the other for a Type-C USB port.  I have my reservations about that as well.  

And why not have MagSafe? And if this one Type-C USB port is for everything, does it solve the  most important feature of MagSafe? Or will the MacBook Air have an Apple Watch type charging port? Inductive charging for something that size, hmmm....  

Oh and BTW, I did not see the world "Retina Display" anywhere.

Eric Schmidt mistakenly suggests Chrome's incognito mode can foil the NSA

“If you’re concerned, for whatever reason, you do not wish to be tracked by federal and state authorities, my strong recommendation is to use incognito mode, and that’s what people do,” Schmidt explained. 

So what’s the problem here? Incognito mode is designed for—and serves—a completely different kind of privacy protection than the one Schmidt implied.

Oh Dear Lord!

Samsung is searching for an answer to Apple Pay

Samsung is edging closer to debuting its own take on wireless payments, according to a report from Recode. Following the launch of Apple Pay earlier this year, Samsung has reportedly been trying to license technology from startup LoopPay to create a competing service. Although the site’s anonymous sources agree that LoopPay and Samsung have been in talks, one says the deal “could still fall apart,” even though another says a prototype payments system has already been created.

Having a payment system on your phone is not the answer to Apple Pay. What Apple did right was bring the bing banks and stores on board. That matters.  The moment Apple Pay was launched, I had an email from my Bank talking about Apple Pay.  

I work in New York and when I walk across a bank on the street, I see Banks (not Apple) advertising Apple Pay. People know what Apple Pay is. Yes Google wallet came to this party a long time back - but only a certain % of people know what Google Wallet is and how Google Wallet works. 

Perhaps more interestingly, LoopPay is best-known for “Magnetic Secure Transmission” technology that mimics a card swipe, allowing users to pay with their phone even at terminals that don’t support NFC.

This made me laugh.

The Intel Enigma

Jean-Louis Gassée takes on Intel, pointing out a missed opportunity

Steve Jobs offered Intel a chance to get into the mobile game: He asked the company to bid on an ARM-derivative for the iPhone. As Paul Otellini, Intel’s CEO at the time, wistfully and gallantly recounted, he gave the opportunity a pass, thinking the numbers (price and quantity) were too low. (An ex-Intel acquaintance told me that the business people felt they should go after Nokia, instead, because of its huge volume at the time.)

It takes someone an ‘out of the box thinking’ to visualize a product of the future. 

When iPhones and Android-based smartphones took off, Intel insisted they weren’t concerned, that they would triumph in the end: We will win because our unapproachable manufacturing technology will produce x-86 processors that are superior in every way to ARM-based competitors.

And now they have a 66-slide presentation on IoT, a “fashionable” wearable bracelet, the delay of their flagship next generation Broadwell chips,  and the Google Glass partnership - talk about a missed opportunity.

Certainly, the more “initiatives” Intel throws at the wall the higher the chances that one of them will stick. But from the outside, it feels like Intel is being driven by courtiers and PowerPoint makers, that senior management really doesn’t know what to do – and what not to do. (Krzanich says he green-lighted the MICA project because his wife approved of it “after using it for several days”.)


Where does 1Password fail on Apple's TouchID

1Password was one of the first apps to update on my phone the moment I installed iOS 8.  I looked at the release notes in the app store and nice words like extension and TouchID made me say in my mind "YES! Finally!".

I like 1Password; although I have no idea of what my passwords might be on any of the services that I use; the fact that 1Password integrates so well with Mac and no iPhone is just a joy to use.  

You create one master password for 1Password and you create some crazy password without realizing that you will have to enter that every single time you want to log into a service on your phone.  It was a pain, but with TouchID and extension you don't have to worry about it anymore.   

So far all the updates to 1Password for iOS 8 have been awesome, minus the iCloud sync part that requires Yosemite; well a few more days I believe.  

Where 1Password fails is the way TouchID is integrated.  Apparently TouchID will work after entering the master password once until the set time (you have to set this in settings) and the maximum time available is 1 hour.  Why?

I fail to understand why wouldn't 1Password follow the same integration pattern as the Apple's app store? Use TouchID every single time, unless the phone has been restarted/reset.  

It still is a pain to type in your crazy long master password on 1Password with or without extension.