John Gruber’s right: Google is probably lying when it says it was surprised by Apple’s decision to build a new Maps app not using Google’s data. But the advantage is that it’s plausible enough that they can let Apple stew for awhile (six months?) before it decides if it should release an iOS maps app without getting blamed for being dicks. Apple’s iOS Maps have been inferior to Android’s for years, because Google held the best stuff for itself, and the folks at Google are smart enough to know that Apple would have a hard time building a suitable mapping replacement in time for iOS 6.
So, by Google failing to release a maps app for iOS, the difference between iOS and Android maps is made greater (advantage Google).
If Google, on the other hand, had released its own maps app using its own data for iOS, like it did for YouTube when Apple dropped it from iOS 6, the story wouldn’t be “Apple’s Maps sucks.” Instead it’s “Apple’s Maps sucks, but Google Maps is fine, just install that.”
The latter doesn’t become the subject of a column in The New York Times from David Pogue. The former does.
We all should have known Twitter was headed in the wrong direction when it started using “grow” and “evolve” as transitive verbs.
For a long time, because these are the kinds of things I think and worry about, I’ve wondered what would be enshrined at a hall of fame for sandwiches. And, on a long drive back from vacation following the consumption of several cheese steaks, I had some time to nail it down.
First, the criteria for candidacy:
The inductee must be a sandwich. It must involve bread with a filling. This seems obvious, but with the growth of paleo, gluten-free diets, sandwich shops selling wraps, and other trends, it’s important to be explicit. Sandwiches that use rolls or other forms of bread instead of sliced bread and open-faced sandwiches that use a single slice of bread will be considered for inclusion. “Flat bread,” the term some restaurants seem to be adopting because they don’t want to say they serve pizza, is not a sandwich.
The inductee must be an all-time-great. No second-tier, or fad sandwiches will be inducted. When looking down the list of inductees, you should see a list of sandwiches that are a who’s who of the world’s sandwiches.
The inductee should have cultural significance. While we consider the sandwich’s taste, we’re not interested in amazing-tasting sandwiches that no one has ever heard of or eaten. Regional specialties are eligible (and, often, strong candidates).
The inductee must be a canonical version of the sandwich, though some variations are acceptable. While many sandwiches are so good that they’ve spawned their own variations, the considered sandwich must be a canonical version, not a entire class of sandwiches. This, perhaps, the hardest part to lay out, but generally means that the composition of the sandwich should be understood by its name. So while hoagies or po’ boys might be mighty fine sandwiches, they are, in the end, platforms that require some explanation; you can’t simply walk into a sandwich shop, order “a hoagie” and know what exactly you’ll get. A cheeseburger, while there exist infinite variations, is understood to be a bun, a beef patty and melted cheese. This is similar how the martini might be inducted into a cocktail hall of fame. Leaving aside the gin verses vodka debate, the drink would be inducted as a whole, and a martini garnished with a twist would not be inducted separately from a martini garnished with olive. The hall is not interested in defining the One True Version of a sandwich, but, rather, the acceptable parameters for a sandwich with a specific name.
And now, the inaugural class of the International Sandwich Hall of Fame:
Reuben: rye bread, corned beef, sauerkraut, Swiss cheese, thousand island or Russian dressing
Cheese steak: Italian roll; thinly sliced beef; white American, provolone or Cheez Whiz; fried onions are optional, though encouraged
BLT: bacon, lettuce, tomato and mayonnaise
Peanut Butter and Jelly: smooth or crunchy peanut butter, strawberry or grape jelly, white or wheat sandwich bread
Cheeseburger: bun; beef patty; Cheddar or American cheese; ketchup, mustard, mayonnaise, lettuce, tomato, onion and pickle are optional
What would you add?
The idea of creating a “character” from an Apple employee is… well…. damn, I can’t even say this without feeling awful… it feels like something Best Buy would do. Maybe even Dell.
I think this is the problem. When I first saw them, I thought they could easily be Microsoft ads.
Even if the ads appeal to “people who’ve never bought a Mac but are thinking about buying their first,” which John Gruber says should be the test, there are ways to appeal to that segment and to current users that don’t stoop to the normally low comedic standards of the advertising industry.
I’m not a Mac owner, though if I bought a new computer today, it would most likely be a Mac. For what it’s worth, I think the ads are dumb, but they wouldn’t make a difference to me one way or the other. I asked my wife, also not a Mac owner and less likely than I to be one, what she thought when “Mayday” came on during a break in the Olympics last night. Her response: “I thought it was dumb that a guy felt he could make up for forgetting an anniversary making a video that didn’t take any work.”
Mark Emmert, president of the NCAA, while announcing the penalties against Penn State and its football program:
Football will never again be placed ahead of educating, nurturing and protecting young people
I’m glad there are penalties, but how does he say that with a straight face?
Two thoughts on the excitement over Rush Limbaugh claiming longtime-Batman-villain Bane is a dig at Mitt Romney:
- Facts have never gotten in Limbaugh’s way telling a story that his listeners will love.
- Of all the inane arguments Limbaugh’s made (probably just this week), this is the one we’re excited about?
I can’t easily express how culturally significant I think Carly Rae Jepsen’s “Call Me Maybe” is, but I think it says a lot that the song, which is now No. 1 on Billboard’s chart, has a video in which Jepsen’s crush turns out to be gay, and no one seems to be throwing a fit about it.
My daughter’s doctor’s office just called to remind me to make an appointment for her annual checkup.
Except it wasn’t a person calling, but a recorded message. It told me to call them. On the phone. Which I was on.
There was no easy way to be connected to scheduler, so I pressed the “2″ key on my phone to repeat the message, wrote down the number on a piece of paper with a pen, then hung up and called them back.
A recording answered.
I stayed on the line and was forwarded to the scheduler. She told me the earliest available appointment for my daughter’s doctor was August 8. We’ll be out of town.
This is the amazing medical system, full of choice and ease-of-access for insured people like me and my family, that some are trying so hard to protect from being changed.
Roller derby is a complicated game with a set of rules that gets bigger and more complex with every iteration. Every time I explain the game to a person who has never seen a bout, I’m reminded how complex it is. And I wonder about roller derby’s ability to attract a larger and mainstream audience. And I worry that our complex rules are a huge contributing factor to its niche status.
Derby, once you understand how the read it, is as dramatic as any other sport.
But how do you teach people to read it if they don’t understand the rules? How do you explain to a newbie, for example, cutting rules? If you cut in front of two skaters, it’s a major. If you cut one, it’s a minor. Unless that person is ahead of everyone else and on the other team, then it’s a major. Except if she’s so far ahead that she’s out of play, then it’s nothing. (Let’s not even get into the beast that is the point-scorer-changing star pass, which gives referees nightmares.)
Now, I’ve been warned about making analogies to and using examples from other sports, but stick with me.
Every summer, I go see the local AA Los Angeles Angles of Anaheim of Southern California of the United States. I drink beer, shout at players and umpires and have a good time. I follow the Phillies and am happy when they win and sad when they lose.
Still, I have no idea how the infield-fly rule works. And I don’t have a great grasp of dropped third strikes and foul-tip outs.
And then there’s hockey, which I watch live once or twice a year. I honestly have no idea what you can and cannot do.
But I understand the way to keep score. And that, for most fans, is enough to convey the drama that attracts us to sports.