The Macalope Weekly: From bad to worse

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See, this is how it works. When you?re foisting a turd off on your customers, you don?t call it a turd. You cover it with shiny sparkly fake jewels and call it a tiara.

Lyons is shocked?SHOCKED!?to find there is marketing going on here! It?s a good thing Google would never do anything like that! Like, say, faking an address in an ad to make Apple?s map data look worse than it is.

Fortunately Apple still has shills who will carry water for them.

The crazy thing is (as if there is just one crazy thing in this piece), Gruber agrees with him:

Under-promise, over-deliver. Apple usually does a good job at that, but I agree with [Jean-Louis] Gassee: they did not set expectations properly for the new Maps app.


For what it?s worth, there?s still no word from Gruber and Siegler on how they never noticed any problems with maps when they were writing their original reviews.

It?s completely easy to not notice any problems, particularly after only a week of use. The Macalope?s been using iOS 6 for more than a week and he?s not seen any. Meanwhile, he can detail any number of times he got lousy directions from Google?s map data ? because he used it for five years and in a variety of locations.

Sadly, the Venn diagram circles of ?reasonable expectations? and ?Dan Lyons screed? do not intersect.

Steve is dead, but the reality distortion field lives on.

And Fake Steve is dead, but the self-important drama queen lives on.

Saturday Special: There?s never anything good on

Let us turn now to the hallowed pages of The Wall Street Journal to get away from all this ?Steve Jobs would never?? hooey and instead look at some other hooey.

Holman W. Jenkins, Jr. says that ?TV Will Be Apple?s Undoing? (tip o? the antlers to The Loop with a foul language warning).

Apple had snafus under Steve Jobs?antenna-gate, MobileMe, the frequently obtuse Siri.

Yay! Finally someone?s not desperately shoving things under the couch cushions in order to make an incorrect, hackneyed point about things that ?never would have happened under Steve Jobs.?

However much it might benefit Apple?s business model to force users to patronize its own maps app, the company won?t get far in trying to deny them Google?s far superior app.

Again, though, the conflation of ?data? with ?app.? The current Maps app is quite nice. The data stinks. When Google gets around to shipping its own app, what you?ll get is the opposite: great data with a lousy app.

Yay, choice!

Apple is frustrated because there is no solution to TV that will let Apple keep doing what it has been doing.

Well, there is a solution, it?s just a question of when the studios will see that.

Apple?s fans imagine the company can do for TV what it did for music: breaking up the existing distribution model. Forget about it.

Jenkins does not exactly say why the two are so different. They just are. And you Apple fans are dumb to want things. And Apple?s dumb to try to do them. The end.

Video-content owners aren?t looking for a savior and ultimately won?t be satisfied with anything less than an open ecosystem accessible by any device.

Uh, no. Actually, what they?re interested in is making you watch ads or making you pay for crappy content by bundling lousy shows together with good shows. In short, they?re interested in foisting a sub-par user experience on their ?consumers? because their ideal of how this should work is best exemplified by that eyeball scene in A Clockwork Orange.

God forbid someone try to fix the situation.

Apple?s rejection of Google?s superior maps is an obvious example, but it goes with the turf. Apple?s spectacular success with devices naturally led to the temptation of a network-effects empire. To such empires, maps are just too important as a way to gather information about users and hit them with ads and e-commerce opportunities.

This is so backwards it?s hard to know how to unpack it. One of the major reasons Apple and Google failed to come to an agreement on continuing to license map data was because Google wanted more user data and Apple didn?t want to provide it.

This piece reads like Jenkins ate about 19 different columns about Apple, jumped up and down for a bit and then threw them back up on the page. He?s forced to recognize that Apple has a strong commitment to open access to the Web so he plays it off as something that?s happening at a team level and doesn?t really have the support of upper management.

Right, because Apple?s so decentralized.

The time to worry will be if Apple?s quixotic quest for TV leads it to block more realistic solutions that emerge on the open Internet. When Apple admits defeat about TV, that may be the best sign for the company?s future.

Apple already allows content providers to make their own apps for iOS and has partnered with some to make them for the Apple TV. Except for specific content like sports, it?s a crappier solution than accessing everything centrally from iTunes, but it?s there, so the Macalope really has no idea what Jenkins?s complaint is about. Apparently Apple trying to improve the user experience is a big mistake, and the company should just roll over and let content providers continue to screw everything up.

Well, isn?t not trying new things what made this country great?

[Editors? Note: Each week the Macalope skewers the worst of the week?s coverage of Apple and other technology companies. In addition to being a mythical beast, the Macalope is not an employee of Macworld. As a result, the Macalope is always free to criticize any media organization. Even ours.]

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