The Macalope Weekly: Living in denial

It's a terrible thing to live in denial. If the Winotaur had an ounce of self-awareness he could tell you. Google's also living in denial if it thinks we're putting its dorky glasses on to watch their ads. And get ready for this week's magical after-school special ending, because some of you Mac users are in denial, too.

Hanging on the line

The reviews of the Windows Phone-based Nokia Lumia 900 are out and "needs more work" isn't really what Microsoft wanted to hear at this point. It's time for another chat with the Macalope's Redmond counterpart, the Winotaur.

Macalope: Dude, you have to help a mythical beast out here.

Winotaur: What are you talking about?

Macalope: The Lumia 900. All of your Windows phones. You gotta do better than this.

Winotaur: Whaddaya mean? The 900 got pretty good reviews.

Macalope: "Pretty good" isn't going to cut it. Look, you gotta throw the Macalope a bone, here. He was hoping this was going to be a really nice device that he could point to as a non-iPhone that he liked. He's obviously not going to hold up an Android phone as an example. But did you read Joshua Topolsky's review? Like the part where he says we should "stop giving Windows Phone a pass"?

Winotaur: Pff! That guy! Total Apple fanb...

Macalope: Don't. Say. It.

Winotaur: Uh, right. Sorry. But give me a break!

Macalope: No, see that's the problem! We've been giving you a break, because we don't want to look like we're just dismissing every non-Apple device. And, really, if there's going to be another phone with a positive user experience, the Macalope wants it to be one of yours. Because he feels like we've grown closer over the years.

Winotaur: Aw. Hey, me, too, buddy.

Macalope: Over our mutual dislike of Android.

Winotaur: Exactly. Hoof bump. [hoof bump]

Macalope: And, frankly, let's face it, Windows Phone just isn't that much of a threat.

Winotaur: HEY! IDC said we're going be ahead of your sorry butt by 2015!

Macalope: Haha! Yeah. That was a good one. It's hysterical that these analyst firms still think it's 1997. The Macalope looks forward to their warnings about the impending Y2K disaster in a couple of years.

Winotaur: I am going to welcome you to the social right in the eye.

Macalope: What... what is that even supposed to mean?

Winotaur: I DON'T KNOW!

Macalope: Look, we want you to succeed. Eh, a little. You know. Not a lot. But some. Just a tad.

Winotaur: Uh huh. This is touching.

Macalope: A very small amount. A smidge.

Winotaur: OK. I get it.

Macalope: A teensie bit. We wish you a dram of success. A modicum. Just enough for you to have a device that we can praise, so we don't just look like knee-jerk Apple fans. We want to be able to hold up a Windows Phone and say "This a really nice phone! We don't know why it's not selling!"

Winotaur: Thanks. Jerk. Anything I can do to lend you some credibility. God knows you need it.

Macalope: Whoa, whoa, whoa. Just trying to help, here. Wow. Phew. Way to shoot the messenger.

Winotaur: I hate you.

Macalope: Of course you do. Hey, are we seeing The Hunger Games this weekend?

Winotaur: Um... sure.


Google unveiled a concept video of its Project Glass, and already Apple's doomed again!

TechCrunch's Josh Constine says "Apple and Facebook Should Be Terrified Of Google-Tinted Glasses" (tip o' the antlers to Atlas Cerise).

Ah, how the Macalope enjoys that construction. It's particularly funny when applied to something as awkward as Project Glass.

Still, if you had told us years ago that people would be only too happy to stand on a street corner talking loudly into a Bluetooth headset about their rash, we would have said you were crazy. And, yet, here we are. So maybe people will wear these dorky things.

Google's augmented reality eyewear is coming to disrupt your face and your business model.

Mostly your face.

It could be a year before Google eyewear reaches stores, but that's why these and other tech companies need to strategize now.

Because God knows Google's never brought out an overly-hyped technology that failed to catch on.

A mouthwatering mock-up video...

If your mouth waters at watching this video, you should definitely seek psychiatric attention, but also possibly medical attention.

...of what the device might eventually be capable of shows someone using voice commands to send messages...

Gosh, if only there were a device that would let you do that now.

...take photos, share to Google+...


...see the locations of friends, view maps, get directions, set calendar reminders, and more.

All while Google watches over your shoulder! Who wouldn't want that?!

There's a dozen ways the product could flop, most obviously if the glasses are awkward and unstylish, but also if they're too heavy, expensive, fragile, or the world is just not quite ready. Let's forget those for a second.

Uhhhhhh, OK.

Apple should seek to capitalize on Google's lack of hardware experience, and spend some of its cash reserves to lock up critical component manufacturers. Even if Project Glass ends up an ugly mess, Apple could still make eyeglass computing beautiful.

Because we just blindly--see what the Macalope did there?--assumed this technology is going to catch on.

This technology sure seems like the future, so Apple needs to be ready to pounce.

Right! Just think where Apple would be if it had failed to get into other technologies that seemed like the future. Like netbooks and thin client computers and the Segway and jetpacks and hovercars and the electric musk ox. Thankfully, we don't live in a world where Apple didn't produce leading products in each of those categories.

Despite its lack of hardware experience, Google is the best positioned company to make, or at least provide the software for eyeglass computers.

Much as it is winning with Android, so will it win with Project Glass.

That's why it's ridiculous when people call Project Glass a diversion or waste of resources.

Well, OK, but can we still call it "butt stupid"?

Seems to me like Google's vision is 20/20.

Then why do they need glasses?

Oh, right. To show us the ads. Gotcha.

Saturday Special: Responsibility

Alas, Mac users! The day of our comeuppance is upon us! Yes, despite our constant braying that Macs are completely invulnerable to malware, it turns out they are not!

Ha-ha! Where is your iGod now, Mac users?! Look upon the Flashback Trojan and despair! For your time of reckoning is...

Wait, we said what now?

We, as Mac users, have been skating. We've been skating on the fact that no one writes exploits for the Mac. And as Apple becomes more and more of a household name, that will not stand.

This is not to say that Apple isn't already working on security enhancements for OS X or that it will ever have as much malware as Windows. But while Apple has been attempting to leverage its historically good reputation, Microsoft has been trying to reverse its historically bad reputation by aggressively implementing new technologies that will make it harder to write exploits for Windows.

The Macalope wants OS X to be the most secure operating system there is, practically as well as theoretically, and there is certainly some evidence that Apple does not take security seriously enough.

Huh. That sure doesn't sound like what some people seem to jerktastically keep imagining we're saying.

We've been over this before, but the point is, the Macalope is unaware of any responsible member of the Apple community who ran around telling people Macs are immune to viruses.

Now, that said, the irresponsible types are sadly coming out to the comments section of Ed Bott's post on this to rep-re-sent. Wow, people. Get a grip.

Is Dr. Web, the company claiming 600,000 Macs are infected, trying to promote itself and its anti-malware services? Sure. That's reason to be skeptical. But it's not reason to simply deny out of hand that it's true.

Particularly because, you know, it appears to be true.

Has any group ever been held fully responsible for the words of commenters supposedly made at said group's behest? Because let's just say that if that's the standard, no one is going to come out of this looking good.

Editors' Note: 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.

Copyright © 2012 IDG Communications, Inc.

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