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. It all begins with the early days of the Internet, its complexities, and Apple’s path from Macintosh to iPod, to its most lucrative product, the iPhone, followed by the iPad, Apple Watch and beyond. There will also be an extensive discussion about the prospects for the success of Apple’s fledgling services, which include News+, a premium version of the app offering access to hundreds of magazines and newspapers, and Apple TV+, in which the company is spending billions of dollars to hire top-flight talent to create original TV shows. Where does Apple+ fit in market currently owned by Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu and other streaming services? Are there already too many for a newcomer to succeed?

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 latest episode: The Tech Night Owl Live — July 6, 2019

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


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Yes, We’re Still Here!

December 23rd, 2019

Just the other day, a client alerted me to the fact that this site was no longer available to visitors who use an ad-blocker. Forget for the moment that I’d prefer that you check into our ads, since we get paid for clicks and, sometimes, for orders.

Unfortunately, they got a blank screen for their efforts. Now I don’t know exactly what changed in recent weeks — except for a minor WordPress upgrade — but I spent several hours of trial and error seeking errant code on the custom theme we use for this site. It turned out to be two lines of extra code that was left in the “header” template. Perhaps it was there to enable a function no longer used, or the upgrades to WordPress made the entries incompatible.

Regardless, removing those two lines restored the site to full operation with the ad-blockers I’ve tried. This site has been here for 20 years, and we’re here to stay.

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and a Happy New Year to Everyone!


Newsletter Issue #978: $60,000 and Counting

December 23rd, 2019

It was 1989. After using Macs at the office for a couple of years, I decided that I needed one at home since I had begun to take outside assignment. So I went shopping.

To be sure, a Mac was pretty expensive in 1989 dollars. There were no budget models, but I shopped around and found a good deal from the same dealer who sold Macs to my employer.

After an afternoon’s consultation, I weighed my options, and I decided to take a chance, expecting that the freelance work would cover the costs. So I made a lease deal for a complete system. I acquired the Macintosh IIcx, an “affordable” alternative to the Macintosh IIx. It was maxed out with 8MB of RAM and a 100MB hard drive. Add to that a 14-inch Apple color display (later referred to as a “13-inch display,”, a LaserWriter NT PostScript printer, and several productivity apps, including QuarkXPress and Microsoft Word. The bill came to $14,000.

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Newsletter Issue #977: Second Time is a…

December 12th, 2019

Unlike my previous columns, this article has taken more than a month to write. But it’s not because of fine-tuning the prose. It’s more about events that hadn’t yet reached a successful conclusion.

But let me start at the beginning…

Once upon a time, I would buy a brand new Mac every other year or so. Beginning in the mid-1990s, I added a PowerBook to the mix. In order to help finance the purchase, I would routinely sell my old hardware, and even in the dog days of Apple’s existence, they held their value pretty well.

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Newsletter Issue #976 — My Long and Winding Road to Catalina

October 30th, 2019

Note to Readers

This column was written before Apple released its fourth fiscal quarter financials. With record revenue, Apple’s results were at the high-end of Wall Street expectations. For now, you can read the basics at Apple’s site. I’ll be dealing with that subject in more detail in the next issue.

Revisiting macOS Catalina

So macOS Catalina has been available for nearly four weeks as I write this. A 10.15.1, bug fix update arrived on Tuesday, October 29th, which likely dealt with some of the bugs in the first release.

Now even though the first public beta of Catalina arrived in late June, I didn’t touch it until September 9th (my birthday) because of problems with the third-party software I need to get work done. Since my aging 2010 17-inch MacBook Pro was left behind as of macOS High Sierra, my notebook has been, more or less, living in the past. I no longer had a second computer on which to test things.

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