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  • Listen to The Tech Night Owl LIVE

    DOWNLOAD — Free Version All good things must come to an end. After 17 years as a pioneer in online radio and podcasting, this will be the final original episode of The Tech Night Owl LIVE. For this show, we’ve gathered some of our favorite guests to reminisce and talk about the present and the near-future of or favorite fruit company, Apple Inc.

    Guests for this very special episode include tech commentator and publisher Adam Engst, Editor and Publisher of TidBITS, outspoken veteran tech commentator Peter Cohen, cutting-edge commentator and podcaster Kirk McElhearn.

    Click to hear our special wrap-up episode: The Tech Night Owl Live — July 6, 2019

    For more episodes, click here to visit the show’s home page.

    Newsletter Issue #1038 — Revisiting Apple’s Non-Upgrades

    December 14th, 2022

    So let me sum it up for starters: Is it very likely that smartphones, tablets and personal computers have become so good that the new, improved models are offering features that few of us really care about? Does that, in effect, make you less likely to upgrade your device?

    Let’s take a look at the path and the results.

    After expectations from Apple rumor sites and speculators that there would be new Macs in the fall of 2022, it didn’t happen. Instead there were some new higher-priced iPads. So the basic (?) iPad now comes with a larger 10.9-inch display, an ancient A14 chip and the usual camera and connectivity enhancements.

    It also starts at $449 U.S., a $120 increase over the previous, 9th generation model, which remains in the lineup at its original $329 starting price. Is the upgrade worth the bother? Well, if you have an older iPad that doesn’t run current operating systems, or really crave the growing laptop-style features from iPadOS 16, perhaps.

    Continue Reading…


    Newsletter Issue #1037 — A Vintage Mac Tale Vol. 2 — The Case of the Missing 300GB

    December 11th, 2022

    It happened during what seemed like many years ago. I was knee deep in the original Mac OS platform, and not only upgraded the OS as soon as it came available, but I would buy new gear every year or two. For a time, before my son left home to seek his fortune, I had two desktop Macs, plus a notebook, known then as the PowerBook.

    While not the cheapest approach by a long shot, it seemed the reasoned approach for my work situation. Each model upgrade was fairly substantial in the scheme of things, and I got paid to write articles and books about technology. So having the newest Mac was an important part of my work.

    At least then.

    When Apple switched to Intel CPUs in 2006, there were vast improvements in performance for the first few years. Then, as Intel confronted more and more difficulties boosting number crunching, not so much. It’s one reason among many for ditching Intel and adopting Apple Silicon.

    Continue Reading…


    Newsletter Issue #1036: A Vintage Mac Tale: Volume One

    November 28th, 2022

    According to the latest estimates, the average age of a new car in the United States is 12.2 years. In other countries, it may be longer, and that means many vehicles are even older, yet they are still on the road in decent enough condition. Sure, they probably require constant maintenance to run, and that maintenance can be expensive if you’re not a do-it-yourselfer. But the average price of a new car is $48,o00, largely because of tight supplies of chips from Asia, and the fact that so many of you prefer SUVs, crossovers and trucks to “old fashioned” sedans. My first new car, an Opel coupe bought in 1967, cost me all of $2,100.

    How time flies when you’re having fun.

    But in the tech world, we need more or less instant gratification. An older gadget needs to be replaced on a fairly regular basis to keep up with the times and the latest apps. It used to be two years for a smartphone, but it’s now 3.5 years at trade-in according to published reports, but iPhones last far longer, usually.

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    Newsletter Issue #1035: So How Can Apple Be Dull?

    August 23rd, 2022

    Note: It’s been a while since I’ve posted in this space. Part of this was due to my physical issues, the worst of which involved surgery for what is called a pseudo aneurism in my right leg, which occurred on August 1st. The procedure required three blood transfusions to deal with a low blood count condition. I spent three nights in the hospital, and I am currently running around with what is known as a wound vac to help the healing process along. A nurse comes three times a week to check things out. The condition has also killed my endurance, so I am easily fatigued. But getting better.

    So what about the title? Is Apple no longer an interesting company, worth following with lots of enthusiasm as before?

    One thing is clear about Apple under Tim Cook He knows how to manage the company with finesse and he made it a powerful money making machine with market caps in the stratosphere. Even at times when other companies have trouble selling product, Apple manages to push more and more iPhones into owner’s hands. It almost defies gravity.

    Continue Reading…