Given the hullaballoo over the idiotically-dangerous “Compliance with Court Orders Act of 2016” that was released in draft form today, I thought it might be wise to remind people why strong encryption is a good and necessary thing. Fortunately, this video does all the legwork for me, which is really rather considerate of it.
A few days ago, Jason Snell wrote about how Steve Jobs transformed product announcements. Of product announcements before this transformation, Snell had this to say:
Now, it’s not as if Apple didn’t do keynotes at its events before Jobs came back. (And of course, other tech companies did keynotes at events like the Consumer Electronics Show.) But all of these were gray, businesslike affairs — glorified press conferences or nerdy product announcements accompanied by boring PowerPoints. None of them could hold a candle to what Jobs did with the events once he took control of them.
There is no event that best encapsulates the pomp and pageantry and overall spectacle of a Steve Jobs Apple event like the announcement of the iPhone in 2007. Even now, knowing exactly what was coming and how the keynote would play out word for word, you can still feel the excitement in the room that day.
Apple’s media events have been of varying quality since then, with today’s “Let Us Loop You In” event being a particular low point in my estimation. Admittedly, there were events under Jobs that were also awful — I’m looking at you, iPod Socks/iPod Hifi announcement — but they were awful because the products being released were absolute shit, not due to the quality of the presentation. They might have been selling a turd, but they showed that turd off with panache the likes of which you could not imagine.
Today’s event had exactly the opposite problem, and it’s a problem that Apple, frankly, has been dealing with for quite some time. And while I love going on Twitter to mock what’s going on, it is starting to feel like I’m picking on someone who’s just trying their best but is really not good at what they’re doing, like I’m just being mean.
I hate to say it, but I think it’s time Apple stops with this sort of media event.
The fine folks at Apple are holding what is likely their last media event at their Town Hall on Apple’s current campus before switching over to the new, giant-ass auditorium at their new crazy spaceship campus that will open up next year. A lot of products were introduced there — the iPod, the Xserve, the ugly and horrible iPod Hi-Fi — so expect some sort of “this room has a lot of history in it” self-congratulatory nonsense before we get to the new stuff Apple has lined up.
You can watch the event on your iPhone, iPad, or Mac by visiting this page or on an Apple TV via the Apple Events app, which you will either have to install from the App Store (on the latest generation) or has magically appeared on your home screen (on earlier generations).
I will be live-snarking the hell out of this event on Twitter — which you can either follow along with by following me on Twitter or by simply clicking the “Continue Reading” link below to see a live, regularly-updating collection of my tweets (and the tweets of others that I found amusing) during the event. I’ll also be back later to opine on whatever I feel like, presuming I feel like I have anything else to say on the matter beyond the obvious “here’s my money, Tim Cook, make things appear right now, please and thank you”.
As will likely become tradition around these parts, here’s last night’s “Last Week Tonight” main story, which focuses on encryption, Apple, and the FBI. I think I’ve made my stance on this whole thing clear but, if you’re still on the fence, hopefully this will make why this is such a hornet’s nest of bad hoodoo clearer.
Would’ja look at that, a politician that actually seems to get this whole “bad guys will find other ways to encrypt their nasty regardless of if Apple makes some GovtOS for you clowns” argument. Good job, Senator Graham!
I was actually so happy about this I went and wrote the guy a note telling him how awesome a job he did there. If you feel like doing the same, here’s the contact page from his official website.
And in case you run into any dummies who give you the “Of course Apple should unlock this thing because national security, and what do you have to be afraid of if law enforcement can unlock every iPhone in the universe” argument: