In a walk through strange lands, mountains are passed, scarred rock from ancient conflict, smothering history. In the shadow of modern delight, dark abandoned kitchen behind the renovated modern one, sits a box of forgotten memories and abandoned hopes. We look into the room, and catch a breath of time, old lord and lady on a throne as the realm stretches out for them. Long-buried banners and heralds proclaim their now spent existence with the glee of youth.
It looks like Apple is, after years of rumours to the effect, finally about to seppuku. Steve Jobs announced at WDC that Apple is going to move to x86 processors, which will, as I and a number of other industry watchers have noted, will make Apple the next Amiga. It's a pity -- I really was getting to like Apple's new way of doing things. For the curious, there are at least 3 ways this is the death of apple. First, this kills their sales until the transition is done, because nobody wants to move to a soon-to-be-abandoned platform. Second, the transition will be difficult -- apart from some more traditional Unix vendors, they're well situated to make such a move, but such moves are risky and expensive. The fact that they kept NeXTStep/Intel current behind the scenes is good, but it's important not to underestimate the efforts to move all software to a new platform, and the inevitable lossage from people who don't want to talk to their software vendor again and possibly buy updates. Finally, Apple can't survive on x86. Their distinction protected them in numerous ways, as did their tight control of the platform. It's like moving to the centre of an active volcano -- no matter how good a deal you get with the moving company, once you're there, you're dead. For people like me, Apple was a long-lived "alternate way of doing things", that recently became cool when Steve Jobs came back, switching to a new stylish, powerful, alternate way that was very nice. This is the end of an era. Sigh.
In other news,Turkey continues to show its strained political system. This is a good example of when, from my perspective, democracy is a worse choice than autocracy -- the president is, as many Turkish presidents have, holding back the masses from implementing Shar'ia. England has people far beyond that -- Here is a tale of real religious lunacy. A girl's Aunt became convinced she was a witch, and severely abused her until the police put an end to it. Of course, in situations like this, the kid is likely to be hurt for life. Members of the idiotic community defend exorcisms as part of their culture -- the adopters are from Congo, and have a wonderful mix of tribal beliefs and christianity. This isn't the first case of abuse tied to this kind of outlook -- some christians, scientologists, and others on both sides of the pond have been doing this for a long time. Also, recently Serbs have been forced to admit massacres have been performed by their side in the recent hostilities, something they previously denied, thanks to video cameras. War, lies, and secrecy are very frequently tightly bound together, and I think world peace would be a lot closer if there more people with video cameras in hotspots all over the world. Questions about ethnic cleansing in Israel/Palestine? Abuse of minorities in Arab countries? Genocide in Darfur? American misdoings? Send swarms of people with vidcams all over those places. Countries still may pursue their national ends, but if they don't have the guts or ability to do that openly, under the sun, then screw 'em. It'd be even better, although perhaps unworkable, if the journalists were also heavily armed and operated under a code not to get involved, but to refuse to evacuate areas that the military tries to clear them.