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Neil Bishop (Macbisho)
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Neil Bishop (Macbisho)

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For those of you have have Insomnia or Sleep Problems like waking up every few hours or difficulty getting to sleep, spend some time everyday doing acupressure on these sleep pressure points that you'll find in the video:
Sleep Pressure Points
#insomnia #insomniac #insomniasucks #sleep #sleepy #healthyliving #healthy #health #sleeping #sleepysaturday  
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Neil Bishop (Macbisho)

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Tonight I'm going to add my thoughts to the cacophony of noise that has been chucked out there about Apple and the possibility / probability of them making a Television.

Right now we're hearing an awful lot about this. Most of the dates I've seen banded around the internet have been for late 2013. These dates come from ANALists who really are just plucking threads of shit out of thin air and seeing what sticks.

The highest profile of these is the always entertaining, because he's never right, Gene Munster. How the hell this cabbage of a man is still in a job I don't know. He's been predicting an Apple Television for YEARS. And the best part is that when/if Apple do decide to bring one out - he'll be crowing about knowing all along for all this time.

Down to my views on this subject before I go off like a frog in a sock about the inability of these gobshites to know their arse from their elbow any further:

As I mentioned last night on Twitter (you do follow me on Twitter, don't you?) There are two events in the world that drive the buying of a new Television, in bulk - they are:

The FIFA World Cup

The Olympics

Now, the next FIFA World Cup is in 2014 - so the prediction that Apple might have a TV to sell by the end of 2013 is good timing for that, the problem I have with this is that it's in Brazil. Why is that a problem I hear you think... Well, timezone wise it's not good for Europe. And Europe and Asia are the BIG football areas, along with South America. North America isn't so much into Soccer so would this event work for Apple, a notoriously US centric company?

I don't think so.

The Olympics - This year, London. GMT means that for vast areas of the globe the games will happen at a reasonable time. There are two major factors that make me think that Apple won't bring a TV out in time for that:

1. We've not got long. The suppliers have not ramped up orders for the parts yet, and we'd probably be hearing a fair bit about this sudden up tick in the number of TV panels being produced... And we're not* because..

2. The world economy is so far down the toilet that buying a fancy new TV is so far down most people's priority list right now it's not funny. I'm lucky to be in Western Australia - we're in a big time mining boom right now and people do seem to be spending money. I spoke to people last week who live in Sydney and they are saying that the shopping centres are empty and nobody is buying clothes, electrical goods or anything.

*unless, of course, Apple's Frenemy, Samsung, actually "bought" Sony's TV business for Apple and it's all a big front!

I find the idea of an Apple Television to be attractive, but if they do make one I don't think that it will be quite what we have in our living rooms right now - Apple don't introduce something to tag along. They change the market.

How could Apple do this? Well, we all know that the interface is "cracked" by Steve. We all now expect it to be Siri powered... I don't think it will be that. I also don't think that it can be quite what we're expecting.

Perhaps my best guess would be that Steve has got his chum Rupert involved and Sky / Foxtel will no longer sell you a subscription for the box / channels but for the whole TV - the interface and programming for that all done by Apple? This gets at $2000+ device in your house, and gets the monthly cost down to something a household can swallow?

What do you think? Please feel free to post your comments etc.
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Just a quick update to this post...

More reasons why Apple would have to significantly shake up the TV business if they decided to enter it:


Panasonic warns of $9.2b annual loss:
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/02/03/us-panasonic-idUSTRE81206P20120203

Sony posts dreadful figures:
http://www.theverge.com/2012/2/2/2765700/sony-posts-1-2-billion-loss-for-q3-fy2011-results

And Sharp wars of $3.8b loss:
http://www.businessweek.com/news/2012-02-03/sharp-forecasts-record-3-8-billion-loss-on-tvs-write-off.html
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Philanthropic Adventures (and when they may not be quite what they seem)

Something that has bugged me for quite a while now is the very quiet press campaign that has, until recently, been very "oh my goodness, the Gates Foundation is freaking awesome" and "Steve Jobs is a turd".

Let's deal with the elephant in the room first... Steve Jobs was a turd. Seriously. A complete arsehole to his family, friends and business partners.

And on the other hand Bill and his merry band of billionaire philanthropists quietly whined about Steve not joining in with the giving fun of the Gates Foundation pledging.

I have to say I'm not entirely surprised that Steve decided not to jump in with Bill and Warren, in Walter Issacsson's book it becomes clear that Steve couldn't devote the time he felt was required to make GREAT decisions on who should be given what the funds that they were requesting or he felt they needed. Even though I'm poorer than a church mouse I think I know what he means.

To put it into perspective I've done some googling to try to find out what people think of the Gates Foundation. They have generated some massive headlines for the work they have sponsored (word chosen on purpose). The Malaria campaign is huge. The RTTT (race to the top) Education scene in the US has attracted billions of dollars.

The press have poured praise on the efforts of the Foundation, and there is no denying that they have done magnificent work. But, if you do a bit of searching it's not hard to come up with a lot of questions about who this is actually helping.

From the insane - "It's a tax dodge by the illuminati to avoid paying taxes" to the scary - "Beware of corporations bearing gifts"

(See http://www.cta.org/Professional-Development/Publications/Educator-September-10/Funding-with-strings-attached.aspx)

The main concern that I've found is that the foundation has so much influence on world concerns. If you look at the Humanosphere site I've linked too you'll see that the single largest tag cloud addition is, unsurprisingly The Gates Foundation)

(see http://humanosphere.kplu.org/tag/bill-melinda-gates-foundation/)

If you are keen enough you'll also come across rumours of "free" equipment, but you commit to buying upgrades and support contracts for x years. The problem with the versions of this that I've seen is that nobody will go on the record about it. If it's true then shame on everyone for supporting this.

Certainly I heard rumours about the support for OLPC coming from the Foundation being closely tied to the use of Windows XP (unsurprising in some ways, why would Chairman Bill fund Linux powered laptops after all?) but still, disappointing.

Finally, to wrap up, and polish this turd - I thought that I'd mention one other thing, in a Steve Jobs type fashion:

After Steve returned to Apple he didn't sell any shares in the company. I've never heard of him selling any shares in Disney either. Technically, the only money he'd have had coming in (he was down to his last few million when Pixar turned to gold) would have been from the share dividends from Disney, as Apple famously still doesn't do. So was he really a billionaire rich bitch like Mr Buffet and Gates after all? Only on paper maybe?
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As I posted this to Twitter I realised that I didn't mention the only man who can be compared to Chairman Bill, Andrew Carnegie. Here was a man who gave and gave and gave. There was no business to support, he'd sold up completely.

It's thanks to his kind of philanthropic gestures that many in America have public libraries, it's why the town I'm from has one, and a bloody great big public park as well. He gave everything he owned away, saving only enough to ensure his family would not be poor.

To this day there are kids going to university because of scholarships earned from his foundations.

That, in my mind, is philanthropy.
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Today is supposed to be sysadmin day... so far it's more like "AbuseSysAdmin Day" I don't suppose any of you know where I can get a life size cardboard cutout of me made? :)
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Neil Bishop (Macbisho)

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Thoughts on Steve's promise to destroy Android.

We all know that Steve Jobs vowed that he would destroy Android.

http://guardian.co.uk/technology/2011/oct/21/steve-jobs-destroy-android?cat=technology&type=article

The method that Apple continue to use at the moment is one that is not working for them anymore it seems, going to the courts is a long slow process and it doesn't seem to be bringing the results up that it should. Meanwhile Microsoft has licensed 15 of the top Android device manufacturers, apparently earning $15 per device for every smart phone made by each of those companies.

http://parislemon.com/post/15745279586/google-is-making-a-killing-off-of-android-and-by

Google seems to be doing a fine job of killing android themselves with the very slow method that phones are upgraded to the latest version of the OS. Unless you buy the latest device when they released the software you don't get upgraded for ages, if ever.

http://parislemon.com/post/16959232221/the-1

However, Apple could put a nail in the coffin by turning around and saying "hey you can license these nonessential patents, the ones that are just nice looking, frivolous things that Google can't currently do - we just require that you pay us $25*per device."

I think this would probably kill android as no manufacturer would want to pay that much for licensing and I also think that the ones that did would make no money from the devices themselves. It would just become too expensive paying $15 to Microsoft and $25 to Apple.

Maybe Apple are just playing a waiting game against Google, waiting to see the outcome of the lawsuit against android from Oracle? From the figures I've seen in that case Oracle would like two and a half-billion dollars per year to license android to use the Java engine, and that's an awful lot of money for a free piece of software!

Of course though, it looks like the explosive growth Google has had with Android may finally be slowing down. The latest figures show that 81% of all the smartphones activated on AT&T and Verizon were iPhones, in the most recent quarter, at least, so maybe Apple have already won? Round two is looking interesting with "new" challenger MicroNok / WinPho7

http://thenextweb.com/apple/2012/01/26/crazy-81-of-all-smartphones-sold-by-att-in-q4-were-iphones/

* figure plucked from my imagination
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This article was dictated to Siri through the notes app. with the links added afterwards. I'm really rather pleased about that. The only editing that had to be done was capitalisation of Apple, Google, Android and Oracle. Though quite often Siri got it right on her own. 
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Má Vlast (Or My Homeland)

When I was a kid my parents did something that was, in my view, quite smart. They noticed that things were turning a bit bigoted around them and they decided that my brother and sister and I would be brought up with as broad an education as possible, at least when it came to religion.

They managed to keep their own views about it out of things, well, at least until my brother died and then suddenly religion was IN, and in quite a big way.

They did not manage to keep political views out of things though. Both of them were fierce in their support of Scottish independence. It doesn’t take much for this to be driven home when your house if full of fluro yellow pennants and a weird kite shaped emblem. All the windows that faced out on to the cul de sac we lived in had them in them when it came to election time.

When I was 7 we moved to a small market town just outside of Oxford. It’s a pretty little place, the nicest thing I’ve seen said about it is “it has the nicest council estate I’ve ever seen” - Bill Bryson, Notes From a Small Island on his walk to the graveyard where George Orwell is buried.

Moving to England when you are that young, your sense of the world is weird, and of course back then the internet was a dream. I remember being asked by other kids who’d surrounded us on our first walk around the new area what our surname was. We told them.. “that’s a funny name!” came the response. “How?” we asked, “MacBishop is just weird!” was the answer that still makes me laugh now.

For various reasons I yo-yo’d between Scotland and England, as a kid, a high schooler and again as a young and then not quite so young adult.

If I’m asked by anyone - I’m always Scottish. Proud of my national identity, my nation, it’s achievements and I’m just like everyone else, embarrassed by the low lights of our humanity.

I cannot remember a time when I’ve been able to vote that I’d ever consider voting anything other than Scottish National Party (SNP). I actually met the leader of the party one night, he had a warmth and passion about him, considering it was bloody freezing and it was 2am in the morning and the poor sod was on his way home and had stopped to buy petrol.

I have friends back home that were brought up in strictly Labour homes, where the family would help the local candidate put up posters and placards etc - The local MP was something of a smart cookie, a guy called Robin Cook. When we were kids Labour had no chance of being the winning party, and SNP even less so. Yet my friend and I had many heated discussions (ok, they were arguments, I spoke with honesty and knowledge, he ranted like a madman. Of course, it’s quite possible he’d say the exact opposite)

The last time I was home he’d changed his mind. So had his family. SNP was now the go. They weren’t too keen on Independence, but they were loving devolution. That was a few years ago now, and I’d bet that if I was to ask they would now be hanging out for a vote to break away from the Union.

My last Scottish MP was, quite possibly the smartest of the smart when it came to Independence, a guy who posed the trickiest of questions that still hasn’t been answered! Tam Dalyell (Formally, he’s actually Sir Thomas Dalyell Loch, 11th Baronet). He’s so famous that his “seat” in the house is the name of the question. The West Lothian Question. It’s a tricky bastard.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/West_Lothian_question

Get your head around that, and you get part way to understanding why Tam was so keen to get things sorted out sooner rather than later.

He knew then, back in 1977, that if devolution came about it would lead to Independence, give people a little power and they will want more.

Scotland is perhaps on the verge of taking that next step. Personally, I wouldn’t rush into it. I understand the reasons behind wanting to rush into it - Oil. The revenues from the black gold under Scottish waters would make Scotland one of the richest nations per capita. And right now it’s as poor as a church mouse (or today of all days, a wee sleekit cow’rin tim’rous beastie!).

The leader of the SNP, Alex Salmond, was an energy economist, in Scotland this means two things... Oil & Gas. He is probably more aware than most that Scotland needs to reclaim her rights to this if she’s to dig her way out of the hole that The Milk Snatcher left the country in. My problem is that if it’s rushed then people will not tolerate mistakes - it has to be done when things are probably as bad as they ever could get. People need to understand that it’s not going to fix things overnight. Scotland and her people need to agree that there are countries that know how to treat the natural resource as best they possibly can - They just need to look a little to the north and a bit to the east at many of her inhabitants ancestors, the Norwegians. She is the gold star example of where Scotland can take herself.

But it needs to be done with a strong positive push. The vote needs to be clear. (And the vote needs to be done fairly, the last time there was a referendum on Independence it turned out that the recently dead voted no, that was back in the 70’s I think.)

My dad celebrates his birthday tomorrow, Australia Day. He lives and breathes Scotland. I know for him he’s going to be so excited about what’s happening.

Scotland has all the bits that are required to make a nation, it was part of the union that it would remain in place. She has banks and a healthy banking system, she has a legal system that is unique, and her laws are still different from those south of the border. There is no trespass law in Scotland, only criminal damage can be prosecuted.

So - why would I like to see my country be a country again? Even just writing that line has made the hair on my arms stand on end! Scotland and England have always been at each others throats, and the “partnership” has always helped England more than Scotland, I think it’s time things got turned around finally. Maybe it’s time to be a Nation again.

What do you think? Have any questions for me? Fire away.
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Today I took another step towards learning what pitfalls are waiting for the world as we eagerly await the end of the year to find out if our American cousins vote for an Amphibian or the President.

Seriously. Where else in the world could a guy called Newt run for CEO of a country?

And that's the nicest thing I have to say about him. His cronies appear to be even worse in many ways and on many different issues, yet he's not exactly what you'd call progressive, is he?

(see http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-15949571)

If the popular vote goes to this guy what does it say to the world (not that they really care what the world thinks of them) about America and her people? "Keep the fuck out of our country or we'll kill you!" springs to mind along with "You don't have to be mad to want to come here, but you do".

What kind of retarded politics says "cut income tax and corporate tax" when your country is as bankrupt as Nigeria? Where the hell are you going to get the money from to pay back the mountain of cash required to run your democracy?

And as I say, he's the best of a bad lot, it seems! Mitt Romney - a guy that calls "$327,000 not a lot of money". I kid you not. Dude, you need to get out more. That's more than a lot of people will earn - in their whole lives.

All of the Reptile, I mean Republican candidates would back laws that allow the individual states to ban abortion, and most would be happy to ban same sex marriages.

Back to Newt and his pond life - he backs "maximum covert operations to disrupt the Iranian nuclear programme." Oh that's good... tell the world "Hey folks, if I get in then you can blame the USA for any and all problems that the nuclear programme in Iran has. Catastrophic earthquake hits and damages a building... blame the US. A passenger jet crashes out of the sky and somehow hits the underground bunker that all of this shit is going down in... blame the US.

The only way that the US will dig it's way out of the slump it's dug it's way into is to compete with those places that have taken the jobs of the people in the United States, but because of the business charter of the companies most of them can't legitimately build factories in their home country. The issue at hand is that they have to produce "shareholder value". For some reason they don't see shareholder and stakeholder at the same level. The poor sods that used to work for you now can't afford to buy your shit because you made them unemployed, and at the same time, you didn't invest in their education or skills so now they are unemployable.

Get the major companies like Microsoft, Motorola, HP, Intel & Apple to bring manufacturing back to the US - your workforce is now nearly cheap enough... and desperation is close to setting in. Maybe you could get 3000 people overnight and make them live in dorms.

(see http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/22/business/apple-america-and-a-squeezed-middle-class.html?_r=3&pagewanted=all)

From the people I know who have gone to the US and their enthusiasm for your amazing, shocking and spectacular country you've got a lot going for you... just don't fuck it up even more by electing one of the Reptile twits as your leader.
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Neil Bishop (Macbisho)

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Systems security, so obvious, yet so many get it wrong! Australia's Defence Signals Directorate has produced this http://www.dsd.gov.au/infosec/top-mitigations/top35mitigationstrategies-list.htm list of simple stuff your Systems Admin should already be doing.
The Top 35 Mitigation Strategies rankings are based on DSD's analysis of reported security incidents and vulnerabilities detected by DSD in testing the security of Australian Government networks.
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Was there, now here. Don't miss there much.
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Stole fire from the dog
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Ellenbrook, Perth
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Liverpool - Oxford - Linlithgow