• Explore the magic and the mystery!
  • The Tech Night Owl's Home Page



  • Discover the power of GraphicConverter 9


  • Listen to The Tech Night Owl LIVE on the GCN radio network

    Click here to get the exclusive GCN app for your iPhone or Android smartphone!

    DOWNLOAD: On this week's all-star episode, we present columnist Jonny Evans, Computerworld's "Apple Holic," who holds forth on BendGate, reports triggered by a YouTube video claiming that the iPhone 6 Plus is prone to bending. He'll also talk about Apple's failed 8.0.1 update, which was pulled shortly after being posted because it caused the new iPhones to lose a carrier connection and Touch ID support. Other topics of discussion include the media disconnect over the huge number of new features in iOS 8.

    You'll also hear from commentator John Martellaro, Senior Editor, Analysis & Reviews for The Mac Observer and a columnist for The Street, whose bill of fare includes Apple's reaction to the BendGate and iOS 8.0.1 issues, how you're supposed to carry those larger phones, along with the failures of Apple's preordering process. John will also discuss Apple's purchase of the Prss magazine publishing platform for iPad, and whether it should be cross-platform. Apple Pay is also on the agenda.

    Click to hear our latest episode: The Tech Night Owl Live — September 27, 2014

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


    Advertisers Wanted: If you want to deliver information about your product or service to a growing audience of very loyal listeners, drop us a line (click Contact Us in the nav bar above). We'll send you our latest rate card with a number of affordable ad packages that will offer a great return on your investment. Try us and see for yourself how The Tech Night Owl can help you grow your business.

    The Doctor Says “Don’t Do That!”

    September 26th, 2014

    I am old enough to remember a very tired joke. I bend my arm and say, "doctor, it hurts when I do this." The doctor says, "Don't do that!" As I said tired. It actually dates back to the early 20th century, part of a famous sketch from the Smith and Dale comedy duo that was later "borrowed" by other comedians.

    But I thought of that joke when the social networks became polluted with a video from someone who deliberately broke their new iPhone 6 Plus by bending it. This isn't the first time a smartphone has been damaged by abuse of this sort. But since this product is built by Apple, it was treated as a huge mess, a significant quality control problem. Some called it BendGate (I admit to using that term).

    Continue Reading...


    Another Apple “Gate”?

    September 25th, 2014

    Every year or so, Apple gets embroiled in some sort of scandal over a new product or service. In 2010, the iPhone 4 arrived with high sales. But some people reported reception problems if you held it in a way that covered the external antenna joints at the bottom edges of the device. The symptom was most obvious when you were in a marginal reception area, and it made the difference between getting a decent connection or dropping the call.

    Once this phenomenon was captured in a video that was uploaded to YouTube, it was fairly easy to duplicate. It was made worse by Apple's claim of having improved the antenna system for the iPhone 4. It didn't matter that mobile handsets, in general, might suffer similar symptoms if you covered the antenna with your hands. Some even had warning labels affixed to the device, or a more detailed warning in what passed for a user manual. Regardless, it was always about Apple.

    Continue Reading...


    So Does Apple Have to Beat Android?

    September 24th, 2014

    In those very old days when Apple didn't seem long for this world, the media would generally remark on how Apple lost the PC wars and it was really time to pack it in. Instead, Apple simply persevered, and ultimately grabbed the most profitable portion of the market. Rather than selling tens of millions of PC boxes with little or no profit, four or five million per quarter with high profits made more sense.

    As some of you recall, when Microsoft made a $150 million investment in Apple in 1997, Steve Jobs remarked that the PC wars were over. Microsoft won. But Macs continued to get better and more popular and, in recent years, have grown ahead of the PC market. These days, Microsoft dominates a dying industry. So Apple won by losing I suppose.

    Continue Reading...


    The Why Apple Was Late Report

    September 23rd, 2014

    I'm sure a lot of you believe that the Apple II and the Mac were firsts in their categories, but they weren't. Yes, it's true there were personal computers with graphical user interfaces before the Mac debuted in 1984. An early version of a GUI debuted in 1973 on the Xerox Alto, developed at their PARC labs. The now-forgotten Alto sported a bitmapped screen and a desktop metaphor.

    Before the Mac, Apple introduced the high-end Lisa in 1983, but it was too expensive for the mainstream. I do recall, though, that it was, for a time, offered as an alternate front end for phototypesetting systems from Agfa Compugraphic. So the Mac was the less expensive product, but the one that spurred the desktop publishing revolution. The critics naturally branded the Mac a toy not meant for serious business use, at least until Microsoft's imitation, Windows, came to dominate the PC landscape.

    Continue Reading...