Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

The Story of the Original iPhone's Development

Soulskill posted about a year ago | from the nobody-wants-to-see-how-the-iSausage-is-made dept.

Iphone 221

jds91md writes "Today's NY Times delivers a great story of the development of the iPhone by Apple. It focuses on the events during the leadup to Steve Jobs taking the stage with shockingly buggy prototypes and pulling off the show that is now history. 'Only about a hundred iPhones even existed, all of them of varying quality. Some had noticeable gaps between the screen and the plastic edge; others had scuff marks on the screen. And the software that ran the phone was full of bugs. The iPhone could play a section of a song or a video, but it couldn’t play an entire clip reliably without crashing. It worked fine if you sent an e-mail and then surfed the Web. If you did those things in reverse, however, it might not. Hours of trial and error had helped the iPhone team develop what engineers called “the golden path,” a specific set of tasks, performed in a specific way and order, that made the phone look as if it worked.' One of the big problems was the phone's connectivity. The man in charge of the iPhone's radios, Andy Grignon, had to deal with Jobs's anger when rehearsals didn't go well. Grignon said, 'Very rarely did I see him become completely unglued — it happened, but mostly he just looked at you and very directly said in a very loud and stern voice, "You are [expletive] up my company," or, "If we fail, it will be because of you." He was just very intense. And you would always feel an inch tall.'"

cancel ×

221 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

First! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45039887)

First!

The Story of Windows Phone (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040089)

I have been skeptical of Windows Phone over the years. As a former iPhone user, I was afraid of vendor lock-in that happens with all of Apple's products, and I wanted something robust that was more than a toy. I switched to Android phones but I am getting tired of the fragmentation and slow interface. I am currently dealing with tons of spyware on my Android phone. The phone was top of the line with my carrier just eighteen months ago, but it no longer receives updates. Worse, it is littered with malware and spyware, a common occurrence in the Android world per the testimony of my acquaintances. Now it looks like GMail is spying on my email through what Google calls "targeted advertising." Enough!

Luckily I am due for an upgrade soon. I have been to a local phone store to try out all of the phones, and the ones that really impressed me were the Microsoft Lumia Windows Phones. Not only were they built with the highest quality materials, but the interface is phenominally clean and quick. There are live tiles which allow information to flow to my home screen without wasting space or causing clutter. Sure, the Microsoft Application Store is young and may not have 500,000 apps, but it's quality, not quantity that I'm worried about. I just need about a dozen or so well written programs to conduct my daily business. Windows Phone is the fastest growing smartphone percentage wise, so the app store will only get better. Plus, I look forward to being able to edit my documents on the fly with Microsoft Office on the way in to work. With a trusted name like Microsoft and Outlook.com, I also don't have to worry about being "Scroogled" and having my personal email targeted for advertisements.

I can't wait to join the growing number of smartphone users who are making the switch to Windows Phone. Windows Phone 8 is a great OS that provides excellent value for money. I would recommend this phone to everyone. If you value privacy and quality, Windows Phone is the way of the future!

Re: The Story of Windows Phone (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040185)

Android phone riddled with malware and spyware? Not my experience. Are you just typing in the garbage you're paid to type in?

Re:The Story of Windows Phone (0, Redundant)

SternisheFan (2529412) | about a year ago | (#45040307)

And how much is MS paying you per comment? Man, that was so blatant a shill comment, even I had no problem seeing through it! Why not just have your employer take out an ad on Slashdot same as Android Nexus???

Re:The Story of Windows Phone (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040407)

Shameless. Shill. Shit. Microsoft Phone - more of the same.

Re:The Story of Windows Phone (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45041167)

I have been skeptical of Windows Phone over the years. As a former iPhone user, I was afraid of vendor lock-in that happens with all of Apple's products, and I wanted something robust that was more than a toy. I switched to Android phones but I am getting tired of the fragmentation and slow interface. I am currently dealing with tons of spyware on my Android phone. The phone was top of the line with my carrier just eighteen months ago, but it no longer receives updates. Worse, it is littered with malware and spyware, a common occurrence in the Android world per the testimony of my acquaintances. Now it looks like GMail is spying on my email through what Google calls "targeted advertising." Enough!

Luckily I am due for an upgrade soon. I have been to a local phone store to try out all of the phones, and the ones that really impressed me were the Microsoft Lumia Windows Phones. Not only were they built with the highest quality materials, but the interface is phenominally clean and quick. There are live tiles which allow information to flow to my home screen without wasting space or causing clutter. Sure, the Microsoft Application Store is young and may not have 500,000 apps, but it's quality, not quantity that I'm worried about. I just need about a dozen or so well written programs to conduct my daily business. Windows Phone is the fastest growing smartphone percentage wise, so the app store will only get better. Plus, I look forward to being able to edit my documents on the fly with Microsoft Office on the way in to work. With a trusted name like Microsoft and Outlook.com, I also don't have to worry about being "Scroogled" and having my personal email targeted for advertisements.

I can't wait to join the growing number of smartphone users who are making the switch to Windows Phone. Windows Phone 8 is a great OS that provides excellent value for money. I would recommend this phone to everyone. If you value privacy and quality, Windows Phone is the way of the future!

why i keep seeing this same kind of comments in every forum ? saying that the poster moved from iphone/android because of something and finds out that windows phone is perfect substitute, praising windows phone and the ecosystem , down playing the lack luster MS apps store and overly praising microsoft / being an apologist for microsoft.. is this a scripted post made by bots ?

personally i used iPhone 4 and when it was stolen i replaced it with cheapo Lumia 710 (ok phone with very bad battery life) and now moved on to Lumia 920 (great phone , loved it). i like the WP OS but im not delusional enough to say that it is the best mobile OS compared to iOS or Android....

my next phone will be iPhone 5s..

A testament to engineers (5, Insightful)

SuperKendall (25149) | about a year ago | (#45039897)

The whole story is a great testament to engineers, in that (a) it's incredible they could have made the demo work that well, and (b) Apple actually shipped the thing described in that story just six months later - and it was basically pretty functional and solid.

Even for you Apple Haters out there that have zero interest in reading something like this - well anyone who is an engineer should read it, and if you can't bring yourself to do that at least read the very last paragraph which is fun for everyone.

Re:A testament to engineers (4, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | about a year ago | (#45039927)

It's also a great testament to what an utter fucking prick Jobs was. An effective utter fucking prick, but an utter fucking prick nonetheless.

Re:A testament to engineers (4, Insightful)

retchdog (1319261) | about a year ago | (#45040011)

seems to work in general. https://www.google.com/search?q=linus+torvalds+fuck [google.com]

Re:A testament to engineers (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040123)

Risky click...

Re:A testament to engineers (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040167)

Wrong, Linus is an occasional prick who knows what he's talking about. This is something that people get wrong about Jobs repeatedly [folklore.org] .

Re:A testament to engineers (-1, Troll)

retchdog (1319261) | about a year ago | (#45040253)

When the fuck did I say either of them did or did not know what they're talking about?

Having someone else's chip on your shoulder must be tedious.

Re:A testament to engineers (2)

Darinbob (1142669) | about a year ago | (#45040345)

You mean it seems to work in two specific cases. In the general case though the conventional wisdom is that it's an awful way to run projects.

Re:A testament to engineers (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040893)

Welcome to survivor bias.

The fact that you can see two guys that were successful by pushing big ideas while being pricks doesn't mean being a prick is requirement, or even helpful. All we know is that being a prick is not enough of a problem to make a visionary manager fail by itself.

There's more to learn by seeing what kind of things the people that failed have in common with each other that you don't find in those that succeed.

Re:A testament to engineers (5, Funny)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about a year ago | (#45040169)

It's also a great testament to what an utter fucking prick Jobs was. An effective utter fucking prick, but an utter fucking prick nonetheless.

It's worse than that: As Dune tells us 'The Golden Path' was Leto Atreides II's prescient plan to guide the entirely of human evolution in the guise of a terrible half man/half sandworm God-Emperor.

This also explains why Apple began building a massive, ring-shaped, climate controlled headquarters shortly after Jobs 'died'. Earth is too moist for sandworms; so they need a secure environment to house their God-Emperor.

Intense Focus is not Pricktitude (4, Interesting)

SuperKendall (25149) | about a year ago | (#45040231)

People who are dicks are dicks no matter what you are doing.

People with intense focus are only dicks if you are getting something wrong.

There is a big difference - and the reason why people were willing to work so hard for jobs where no-one would ever work that hard for a real dick.

Re:Intense Focus is not Pricktitude (0)

narcc (412956) | about a year ago | (#45041163)

no-one would ever work that hard for a real dick.

I don't know about that. I've met Apple fanboys...

Re:A testament to engineers (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040351)

One doesn't reach that level of success by being a "nice guy". Get over it. He was effective, and above all, he had the respect of his employees. Sure, they feared him, but they would give 100+% to reach the expectations Jobs had of them. He wanted the best from them, they saw the challenge and went for it, and whether you like it or not, he paved the road for the tech we have today.

Re:A testament to engineers (0)

MightyMartian (840721) | about a year ago | (#45040363)

Hey, I did say he was effective. But the guy still sounds like a fucking asshole.

Re:A testament to engineers (2)

Goody (23843) | about a year ago | (#45041129)

Imagine where Blackberry might be today if they had an asshole screaming at their product management people back in 2007.

Re:A testament to engineers (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040793)

Frankly, if that's the price of "that level of success" is being an asshole, then everybody that successful made the wrong choice and deserves the judgement because the world is made better by a lack of assholes.

Maybe he wasn't an asshole in person. To some extent, this guy might be taking Jobs' worst, most stressful day out of context and slightly exaggerated. I just don't know. Whatever.

But I actually suspect that the extremely financially successful are not significantly different in their capacity to be assholes than a random sample of the population. At least other than, perhaps, not being able to empathize with the poor ("why don't they be just like me? I did it so everybody can"), but the engineers in his employ aren't poor.

Re:A testament to engineers (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040559)

Or a testament to the pressure that he (and everybody else) was under. Jobs was pretty much betting the company on that project, as I see it.

Re:A testament to engineers (4, Interesting)

noh8rz10 (2716597) | about a year ago | (#45039935)

such a stressful story! My blood pressure was up just reading it. Imagine being caught in SJ's whithering gaze! The scary part is that when he told people "you f'd my company" that was the nice time, and other times he became unglued! Then to have to sit there in the audience, knowing there is nothing you can do! I would have been quaking in my boots.

the interesting thing is it didn't go into too much depth about iOS. in the early years SJ kept insisting to miniaturize OSX, but at some point they obv switched. there must be a story there!

Re:A testament to engineers (2, Informative)

bensyverson (732781) | about a year ago | (#45040269)

iOS (then iPhone OS) basically is a miniaturized OS X. Nothing changed.

Re:A testament to engineers (0)

noh8rz10 (2716597) | about a year ago | (#45040461)

nope it's completely different. have you ever used either ios or osx?

Re:A testament to engineers (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040727)

It's "completely different" in the same way as GNU/Linux running GNOME is "completely different" to GNU/Linux that boots into a text console.

If you try programming the two operating systems, you'll realize that they're the same OS, even though the rules for developing iOS apps are very different.

Re:A testament to engineers (1)

slash.jit (2893213) | about a year ago | (#45040849)

A better comparison would be I guess Any desktop Linux and Android

Re:A testament to engineers (2)

Your.Master (1088569) | about a year ago | (#45040837)

Using an OS tells you nothing about whether one OS is a miniaturized version of another OS.

The UI is not the same thing as the OS. With sufficient motivation you could make a shell on OSX, a shell on Windows, and a shell on Linux/BSD/whatever, which present an essentially identical UI. A somewhat better measure is if you've developed for both OSes, but even they can have a different API set or a converged one (eg. the WINE project or the Unix API implemented in *all* the major OSes including Windows, but put to varying degrees of practical use in each).

So the question becomes: did Jobs give up on pushing making a miniaturized OSX on the phone, or did you just misunderstand what he meant by miniaturized OSX (after all, he could have meant OS in the same way as you interpreted it, despite our quibbling about the technical definition of OS)?

And...I don't know the answer to that at all. Both are intuitively defensible positions, and with enough research one is likely correct.

Re:A testament to engineers (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040279)

iOS *is* a "miniaturized" OSX

Re:A testament to engineers (3, Interesting)

icebike (68054) | about a year ago | (#45039981)

Its also a testament about demonstrating something way before it was ready. A specific sequence of events that had to occur in a given order to prevent it crashing? Really? Send your most visible exec out with total crap in his hands?

Couldn't they just wait till it actually worked? Its not like anyone was racing them to market in those days.

Re:A testament to engineers (4, Insightful)

MrEricSir (398214) | about a year ago | (#45040025)

Its also a testament about demonstrating something way before it was ready.

Which if you've been an engineer for more than, say, 10 minutes, is something you've experienced in your career.

Re:A testament to engineers (1)

icebike (68054) | about a year ago | (#45040079)

No, you only see Almost ready products in public demos, never flaming disasters carefully masked.
Most engineers worth their salt wouldn't even show pre-alpha products to management.

The thing is, it wasn't a flaming disaster (3, Insightful)

SuperKendall (25149) | about a year ago | (#45040181)

never flaming disasters carefully masked.

It wasn't a flaming disaster though, just a lot of components that all worked pretty well already, but very very unstable - especially in combination.

That is very, very far in the live demo world from a "flaming disaster". Flaming disaster would have been a browser that could only parse simple HTML, mail client that ate emails, phone that failed to dial ever, etc.

Re:A testament to engineers (1)

Darinbob (1142669) | about a year ago | (#45040409)

Well, public demos are relatively rare overall. Sure Apple does it, but most companies will have smaller initial demos, either to invitees only or as a dog and pony show to a specific customer. But definitely the idea of showing something off before it even works is common. Usually you've got a snake oil purveyor leading things (from sales department, or a CEO), and if things break badly there's a lot of sleight-of-hand being done to hide the product while it reboots.

Things are rarely flaming disasters because there's a script that's being followed. Prospective customers are not given free and unfettered rein to try out the products. So you can have an automobile at a show that does not run because no one is going to attempt to drive it. For devices or software there's almost always a sales person handy to demonstrate and to give plenty of excuses ("I talked to the engineers this morning and they told me that this feature is done and in final test, but was not ready for the show").

Re:A testament to engineers (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040425)

No, you only see Almost ready products in public demos, never flaming disasters carefully masked.
Most engineers worth their salt wouldn't even show pre-alpha products to management.

I guess the mists of time, and vaporware itself, put out some of those "flaming disasters"?

Re:A testament to engineers (1)

squiggleslash (241428) | about a year ago | (#45040739)

Didn't Apple do a public demo of their Copland operating system? Indeed, IIRC, they even distributed a few copies of an early alpha version to some developers, despite it reportedly being in a similar state.

Re:A testament to engineers (1)

cbiltcliffe (186293) | about a year ago | (#45040757)

No, you only see Almost ready products in public demos, never flaming disasters carefully masked.
Most engineers worth their salt wouldn't even show pre-alpha products to management.

Sure, you do. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Y_Jp6PxsSQ [youtube.com] Oh...wait. That wasn't carefully masked. It was just a flaming disaster. Carry on.

Re:A testament to engineers (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040907)

You always see flaming disasters carefully masked in public demos of unreleased products, particularly ones that are not simply iterations of previous devices. Otherwise, the product would have already been released. This is almost true by definition, although granted, there is a little ramp-up time for manufacturing to consider.

Where have you been developing products? Have you never seen demos where the press isn't allowed to touch the device? When they aren't, that's a big clue that there's a golden path in the demos that you aren't supposed to leave.

I guarantee you that the demos of the new console generation, where the press wasn't allowed to actually play with the devices.

(also, what were they going to do, hold the iPhones behind their backs when Steve Jobs walked by and asked to see the product, claiming they'd been playing Ping-Pong for the last year but would get right on the iPhone project?)

Here's how things go: "about how long would it take to get this?" "X months absolute minimum, but that will be shit, and Y months for something amazing". "Okay, well have Z months. Figure out what you can with that time and do it. And have something that I can demo to the press in Z-W months. Go."

Re:A testament to engineers (1)

McGruber (1417641) | about a year ago | (#45040997)

Its also a testament about demonstrating something way before it was ready.

Which if you've been an engineer for more than, say, 10 minutes, is something you've experienced in your career.

I really hope you are not a bridge engineer!

Re:A testament to engineers (1)

hardtofindanick (1105361) | about a year ago | (#45040065)

Send your most visible exec out with total crap in his hands?

Depends on the exec. Some are completely incapable of doing this - they either panic and push the wrong buttons or fail to gracefully recover when they fumble.

When you are starting off, the goal is to demo the vision, not the product. So it is not only ok, but commonplace to have incomplete/buggy device. But if your execs cannot pull off these kinds of demos, the whole thing is DOA.

Re:A testament to engineers (4, Informative)

stenvar (2789879) | about a year ago | (#45040113)

Couldn't they just wait till it actually worked? Its not like anyone was racing them to market in those days.

Android had been in the works since 2005 and probably could have been released on a phone in 2007, but their acquisition by Google probably cost them a year. And at the time, Palm, Microsoft, and Nokia were formidable competitors. In 2007, they had become complacent and failed to update their OSes, but Apple didn't know that at the time.

Yeah, people were "racing them to market", and the initial iPhone was a pretty iffy proposition and pretty limited device.

Re:A testament to engineers (3, Interesting)

cusco (717999) | about a year ago | (#45040121)

This is yet another example of the differences between Gates and Jobs. Gates went on stage and demo'ed their operating system. Jobs went out with his immaculately rehearsed script of things to do in the only order that they had managed to make work. Win95 blue screened when it hit a bad driver, while IOS (arguably a much more immature product when demonstrated) gave the illusion of being ready for consumers.

Re:A testament to engineers (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040149)

This is yet another example of the differences between Gates and Jobs. Gates went on stage and demo'ed their operating system. Jobs went out with his immaculately rehearsed script of things to do in the only order that they had managed to make work. Win95 blue screened when it hit a bad driver, while IOS (arguably a much more immature product when demonstrated) gave the illusion of being ready for consumers.

Yeah, Jobs was the much better liar. What's your point?

Re: A testament to engineers (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040225)

Jobs even lied to himself so long that it killed him.

Re:A testament to engineers (1, Insightful)

cusco (717999) | about a year ago | (#45040251)

Gates wanted to make things useful, Jobs wanted to make them pretty. They both knew their audience, I suppose.

Re:A testament to engineers (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040433)

Gates wanted to make things useful, Jobs wanted to make them pretty. They both knew their audience, I suppose.

Jobs wanted to make things usable. And he did.

Re:A testament to engineers (2)

icebike (68054) | about a year ago | (#45040219)

IOS (arguably a much more immature product when demonstrated) gave the illusion of being ready for consumers.

Not really. I distinctly remember Jobs nonchalantly handing off a crashed phone for another one and making it look
like a planned event. He fooled no one. The press called it out, (but of course let it slide), because it was Jobs after all.

Re:A testament to engineers (3, Insightful)

Ol Olsoc (1175323) | about a year ago | (#45041109)

This is yet another example of the differences between Gates and Jobs. Gates went on stage and demo'ed their operating system. Jobs went out with his immaculately rehearsed script of things to do in the only order that they had managed to make work. Win95 blue screened when it hit a bad driver, while IOS (arguably a much more immature product when demonstrated) gave the illusion of being ready for consumers.

Absolutely. This is the difference between geeks/engineers, and people who know how to market things. Geeks and engineers in general don't even like the ability to market. They think it is "bells and Whistles" or "Madison Avenue". I suspect that like most good geeks, Gates went out cold, and tried to demo his products, probably the first time he'd seen them in action. I suspect that (almost certain) that Jobs rehearsed his spiel many times before going out. And if there was a stability problem, what ran before what, he knew it and worked around it.

In the end, when everything worked well, the orchestrated marketing meant nothing othre than it did it's job.

Re:A testament to engineers (2)

BasilBrush (643681) | about a year ago | (#45040267)

Couldn't they just wait till it actually worked?

Not really. They'd painted themselves into a corner. Until 2009, their big annual event was the Keynote at the January MacWorld show. And they have to had to have at least one big product to announce each time.

The article says that because of the engineering efforts that were going into iPhone, there wasn't anything else but the Apple TV to announce. What it doesn't mention is that the AppleTV wasn't even an option because it had already been previewed at the previous WWDC.

This is why they don't do the MacWorld keynote anymore. So they can pick their own dates for launches and previews.

Re:A testament to engineers (2)

willy_me (212994) | about a year ago | (#45040035)

In the initial stages the iPhone was hidden from most Apple employees. Even those that worked specific parts of the software design would not know how it was supposed to come together. To bring all the employees inline with development would inevitably result in the design being leaked before the big announcement. As it stands, rumors of it existed but people only had basic ideas of how it might look and operate.

The final announcement greatly preceded the launch - something that is very rare for Apple. You can bet it was announced early partly so that Apple could bring in more employees and distribute prototypes without spoiling the presentation. But you are quite right in that 6 months is not much time to get if working right. But considering how inflexible the first version of the OS was, not impossible.

Not very inflexible at all (3, Informative)

SuperKendall (25149) | about a year ago | (#45040213)

But considering how inflexible the first version of the OS was, not impossible.

If you look at the jailbreaking stuff from launch time though, the platform itself was not really inflexible at all. Many of the classes iOS developers know and use today were there at launch. The device itself have a limited set of applications but underneath it really was running a scaled down OSX and using ObjectiveC for applications just as the desktop did...

I totally agree with you on the need for groups to be able to work together being a reason why the announced it so far ahead of launch (comparatively). They got it as far as they could (really farther) with the left hand not being able to know what the right was doing.

Re:A testament to engineers (1)

Darinbob (1142669) | about a year ago | (#45040427)

Sounds plausible. I had a friend who was a manager at Apple, unrelated to phones, and at one point they had a bunch of managers come together to do final assembly on one of the subsequent phone models just to keep it a secret a little longer.

Re:A testament to engineers (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040769)

I disagree. The engineers were crap. They created a shitty product then had to put in a lot of extra hard work, which made them look like heros, instead of making decent software the first time. We really need to stop looking up to people who go into crunch time to fix a bunch of issues. Those issues shouldn't have existed in the first time. Anytime you need to buckle down and work extra hard you've already failed. Those times shouldn't be awarded and the engineers who got you there shouldn't be praised. They should be disgraced. As an industry we should be better. Please stop being lazy when you code. Take pride in your initial work and not in crazy bug fixing sprees. Those are signs of bad engineers not good ones.

Re:A testament to engineers (0)

slash.jit (2893213) | about a year ago | (#45040905)

It is really incredible that Apple shipped the phone in pretty good condition in just six months later but still IT LIED TO THE PEOPLE.

Apple made fool out of all the audience. Fake signal bars, faking Wi-Fi strength?? Really?

Now Hollywood should make a movie out of iPhone's development. That would be entertaining.

I hope we could see similar stories of lies and corporate spying coming out of Samsung and Google.

"One of the nicest commutes anywhere..." (1)

reiserifick (2616539) | about a year ago | (#45039913)

"The 55 miles from Campbell to San Francisco make for one of the nicest commutes anywhere. The journey mostly zips along the Junipero Serra Freeway, a grand and remarkably empty highway" Spend some time commuting on I-280 (the Junipero Serra Freeway) and you'll soon realize that it's clogged with people doing 5 mph under the speed limit in the fast lane...

Re:"One of the nicest commutes anywhere..." (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040045)

My experience is that everyone is doing >80...

Re:"One of the nicest commutes anywhere..." (1)

cbiltcliffe (186293) | about a year ago | (#45040797)

You must be one of the people doing 5 under in the fast lane, then. Speed up, or get out of it.

Re:"One of the nicest commutes anywhere..." (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about a year ago | (#45040917)

My experience is that everyone is doing >80...

The further you get from SF, or the closer you get to commute time, the less true that is.

I usually use 280 for a small handful of minutes, just enough to get to the 9. When it's moving, though, it's one of the fastest highways in California.

Re:"One of the nicest commutes anywhere..." (1)

spopepro (1302967) | about a year ago | (#45040205)

Maybe because it is, by far, the most reliable stretch of highway in the bay area to get a ticket. Especially between 92 and 380.

and all without... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45039995)

copy and paste

Not the original (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45039997)

The original iphone was made by Cisco.

Re:Not the original (2)

cusco (717999) | about a year ago | (#45040183)

No, the original iphone was made by the Brazilian telephone company. Apple just ripped off the name without doing any research.

if you've only got a highly buggy prototype (1, Interesting)

themushroom (197365) | about a year ago | (#45040017)

...perhaps you shouldn't be demoing it to the public yet.

Re:if you've only got a highly buggy prototype (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040579)

But then your competition will demo their product. Then won't matter if you've been developing yours for years before, all the public sees is the other guy was first.
And if you're not publicly demoing something new now everyone thinks you no longer have anything to offer.

Re:if you've only got a highly buggy prototype (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45041119)

Yes, you are right, what the hell were they thinking? It's too bad they didn't listen to your advice, otherwise they might have been successful. :(

give proper credit (0)

stenvar (2789879) | about a year ago | (#45040049)

The impact has been not only economic but also cultural. Apple’s innovations have set off an entire rethinking of how humans interact with machines. It’s not simply that we use our fingers now instead of a mouse. Smartphones, in particular, have become extensions of our brains. They have fundamentally changed the way people receive and process information.

Except they weren't really "Apple innovations". Apple did a great job with the design and engineering of the iPhone, and they popularized these ideas and interfaces. But the innovations themselves largely came from Palm, Nokia, and a whole bunch of startups.

Terminology (4, Informative)

MrEricSir (398214) | about a year ago | (#45040099)

Except they weren't really "Apple innovations". Apple did a great job with the design and engineering of the iPhone, and they popularized these ideas and interfaces. But the innovations themselves largely came from Palm, Nokia, and a whole bunch of startups.

The word "innovation" does not mean "invention." What you're describing, however, does fit the definition of innovation.

Re:Terminology (0)

stenvar (2789879) | about a year ago | (#45040203)

The word "innovation" does not mean "invention."

Neither does it mean "popularizing".

What you're describing, however, does fit the definition of innovation.

Palm, Nokia, RIM, and Microsoft didn't just invent these technologies, they brought them to market and had very successful products with them. That's innovation. Apple never even caught up with their market share. Apple did a spectacular job on design, engineering, and marketing, but none of that is innovation.

Re:Terminology (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040671)

The word "innovation" does not mean "invention."

Neither does it mean "popularizing".

Sir, you are mistaken. Apple has recently innovated the definition of "innovation". You will kindly conform to the new Apple-approved meaning.

Re:give proper credit (1)

Bill_the_Engineer (772575) | about a year ago | (#45040151)

But the innovations themselves largely came from Palm, Nokia, and a whole bunch of startups.

It's a difference between seeing the forest (a well designed product that people will use) instead of the collection of trees (stand alone features that didn't work well together).

Re:give proper credit (1)

stenvar (2789879) | about a year ago | (#45040289)

But that difference didn't exist. All the smartphones at the time had pretty much the same features in the same combinations as the iPhone. A Palm-based phone around the time the iPhone came out already was pretty much like an iPhone: same kind of launcher, same productivity apps, same kind of syncing, music player, online market, dock, sync cable, etc. The main difference between iPhone and the rest was not innovation or combination of features, it was appearance, design, and (a moderate increase in) usability.

Re:give proper credit (4, Insightful)

Bill_the_Engineer (772575) | about a year ago | (#45040629)

A Palm-based phone around the time the iPhone came out already was pretty much like an iPhone: same kind of launcher, same productivity apps, same kind of syncing, music player, online market, dock, sync cable, etc. The main difference between iPhone and the rest was not innovation or combination of features, it was appearance, design, and (a moderate increase in) usability.

No. They had low resolution displays and was pretty much an upgraded Palm Pilot with a cell phone built-in and a blackberry like keyboard that made life easier since graffiti required a stylus to input well. I had one. I also had to work with Nokia's offerings. There were absolutely no comparisons between these devices and the very first iPhone. The windows mobile version of the treo was a little nicer, but still had a low resolution display and had very little in common with the iPhone.

There is a reason the smart phone market didn't take off until the introduction of the iPhone.

Re:give proper credit (2)

spire3661 (1038968) | about a year ago | (#45040747)

IOS 7 is just NOW getting the palm card-style interface as a task manager. My wife saw it and even said 'o it works like my Palm does'. When iphone came out i had a palm Pre as well, and it wasnt until Iphone 4s that i thought Apple had a worthy replacement for my Palm.

Re:give proper credit (5, Insightful)

Dzimas (547818) | about a year ago | (#45040153)

Except they weren't really "Apple innovations". Apple did a great job with the design and engineering of the iPhone, and they popularized these ideas and interfaces. But the innovations themselves largely came from Palm, Nokia, and a whole bunch of startups.

Ford didn't invent the car either, but the Model T was certainly innovative and redefined the automotive industry. The same can be said for the iPhone.

Re:give proper credit (0)

stenvar (2789879) | about a year ago | (#45040321)

I don't think so. Ford dominated its market for a while; Apple never did.

Re:give proper credit (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040679)

Didn't the iPod dominate the mp3 player market?

Re:give proper credit (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45041169)

Hey dumbass. They've been dominating the market BY REVENUE for YEARS now.

Re:give proper credit (2)

DJCouchyCouch (622482) | about a year ago | (#45040925)

I'm sure what Nokia and Palm feel real good right at the moment, now that you've finally given them the credit they deserve.

Identifying problem source (1)

r2kordmaa (1163933) | about a year ago | (#45040083)

"You are [expletive] up my company," or, "If we fail, it will be because of you."

Every engineering failiure starts with an managment failiure

Re:Identifying problem source (3, Interesting)

dgatwood (11270) | about a year ago | (#45040295)

Exactly what I was thinking. Had I been there, my reaction, after the initial shock and horror, would have been, "No, if we fail, it will be because you demanded we demo a product before it was ready." There's pushing people to deliver amazing products in an amazing timeframe, and there's pushing people to deliver a product, finished or not, in an unrealistic timeframe. There's a very fine line between the two, and had they failed, it would have been entirely because Steve crossed that line. Fortunately for everyone involved, he didn't. He knew exactly how far and how hard to push, and he pushed that hard, but no harder.

Steve Jobs was a complete... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040105)

...cunt. I don't know why people revere this workplace bully so much.

Re:Steve Jobs was a complete... (1)

Tablizer (95088) | about a year ago | (#45040333)

...cunt. I don't know why people revere this workplace bully so much.

It's like bungee jumping or sky-diving or even dating the most hot-ass babe on campus: It can be exhilarating and fun when you are young and full of energy, ego, guts, gambling, hormones, and you are a bit naive.

But after a while it takes its toll and it's time to move on to something more sane.

Re:Steve Jobs was a complete... (0)

Ol Olsoc (1175323) | about a year ago | (#45041177)

...cunt. I don't know why people revere this workplace bully so much.

And Winston Churchilll was an alcoholic lush. And Ben Franklin was a lecher. Do not care.

Golden Path (5, Insightful)

Ed Johnson (2881561) | about a year ago | (#45040145)

I don't know why this surprises anyone. EVERYTHING I have ever designed had to be demoed before it was ready, sometimes a year or more before it was ready. Usually we could arrange to have the actual engineers (me or someone on my team) do the demo, and we always tred to practice to insure we could demo only things that worked. When the boss had to do the demo we always had extensive rehearsals, and emphasized that he must perform the steps exactly as we practiced or bad things would likely happen. On some projects hardware was so late we had to build simulators and hide them under the table so the software would have something to control/monitor. I believe this sort of demo is very common in any sort of R&D environment including big name companies demoing new products/technologies for the first time. Every demo of an early prototype will crash or show unexpected behavior at some point during the demo, the key to the impression it makes is how well the demonstrator handles the issue - getting mad in a public demo is never a good idea. Usually you just tell someone else to file a bug report, and move on - explaining that there is, of course, still some polishing to do; or use it as an opportunity to explain the way you work with customers to resolve such issues - leaving the impression that you engineered the failure in order to fit that topic in to the presentation. My ex boss was a master of that technique. Even in my current job where my products are for internal use I am frequently asked for demos before products are ready, the difference being I don't have to offer smooth explanations when things go wrong, usually I just have to offer an estimate of when it might be done.

Re:Golden Path (1)

drooling-dog (189103) | about a year ago | (#45040413)

I have no problem with even totally canned demos, as long as everything works as promised when the product ships. A "premature demo" can still be valuable for demonstrating product concept and eliciting user input. Interest will fall off if the lag between demo and shipping is too long, however.

Re:Golden Path (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040465)

Can we take up a collection to buy this guy a fucking paragraph tag?

Re:Golden Path (1)

n7ytd (230708) | about a year ago | (#45040695)

Ah yes, the dog and pony show, with super glued, hand-built prototypes and fake UI screens. The real danger is always in management, who must think, "hey, we saw it working last week, why do these eggheads say they need more time now? What's left to do?"

Re:Golden Path (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040943)

This is why there are specific kind of demos where you don't want everything going smooth, or at the very least, you make something obviously unfinished. I've gone as far as making my UI uglier for a demo: People thought they were funding UI improvements, when in reality we just needed a whole lot more investment in the backend to support realistic loads effectively. Otherwise, the app would have looked ready to go, but fail miserably when in production.

The Office doesn't play (1)

RITjobbie (211397) | about a year ago | (#45040155)

I just rewatched Steve's iPhone demo: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c_m2F_ph_uU [youtube.com]

When he clicks on The Office and says, "Let's watch a TV show", Pirates of the Caribbean plays.

Re: The Office doesn't play (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040415)

this video is edited most likely to get ad views. in the full version the office plays, then he clicks the movie. use your brain if this actually happened it would have been noticed.

iPhone (1)

ackthpt (218170) | about a year ago | (#45040165)

The next chapter in the The Time Traveling Adventures of Reginald Smitherington, Klutz: In Reginald's previous episode he dropped in on Preston Tucker and helped him with the debut of his revolutionary car, mistakenly connecting the fuel line to the distributor and starting a fire.

This time Reginald helps Steve Jobs improve upon his perfectly assembled and functioning mobile phone, by introducing some last minute code, to make the presentation even more spiffy...

Specs of iPhone (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040177)

Only about a hundred iPhones even existed, all of them of varying quality. Some had noticeable gaps between the screen and the plastic edge; others had scuff marks on the screen. And the software that ran the phone was full of bugs. The iPhone could play a section of a song or a video, but it couldn't play an entire clip reliably without crashing. It worked fine if you sent an e-mail and then surfed the Web [dirtrades.com] . If you did those things in reverse,

still want that (0)

Tablizer (95088) | about a year ago | (#45040369)

When the finale came -- and it worked along with every [app] before it...

Gee, the demo's still better than the real thing 6 years later.

Haven't we all faked demos? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040605)

I know I've written versions of software which were more like slideshows, so that a salesman could demonstraite the look and feel of something before it was complete.

shockingly buggy??? (1, Troll)

sribe (304414) | about a year ago | (#45040675)

Jobs got through a long and involved demo without a crash nor even a glitch. Compare this to so many Microsoft presentations, where you know good and damned well they put every bit as much effort into finding a "golden path" for the demo, but it crashes ANYWAY!

Re:shockingly buggy??? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45040825)

It means someone worked their tail off the night before the demo....

Overtime (2)

CohibaVancouver (864662) | about a year ago | (#45041173)

What disappoints me about all the stories of Jobs's excellence is it's apparent that, because I'm unable (and unwilling) to work 80 hours per week, I'll never be part of something amazing. Seems like no one has ever taken their kids to soccer practice *and* changed the world.
Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>