FCC Looking Into GV Mobile and Google Voice Application Rejections


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So the proverbial shit has hit the fan! Yep, the FCC is looking into the suspicious situation with Apple removing the AppStore applications GV Mobile and VoiceCentral as well as Googles unreleased Google Voice app.

A story posted on TechCrunch:

FCC Takes On Apple And AT&T Over Google Voice Rejection: “Earlier this week, we learned that Apple had suddenly begun to pull third party iPhone applications for Google Voice, citing the unconvincing rationale that they “duplicated” some of the iPhone’s functionality. We then broke the news that Apple had also rejected Google’s own official Google Voice application six weeks prior, sparking a din of complaints from developers and users alike over the arbitrary and possibly anti-competitive restrictions being imposed by Apple. AT&T, too, has been a target of frequent criticism as many of us believe it too may have also played a part in the decision.”

This is really really big news. According to TechCrunch, three letters were sent from the FCC. One to Apple, one to Google and the last to AT&T. They are trying to determine exactly what is going on and I would guess to see if AT&T had anything at all to do with the applications being removes/rejected.

If anyone can get to the bottom of this fiasco, the FCC can. I’m going to be glued to the news feeds for a couple of months to see how this plays out. Hopefully, the outcome will be a more public policy on AppStore rules and what exactly was the reason for the removal/rejection of the Google Voice applications.

40 Years Ago Today…


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After Apollo 11 went to the Moon and returned…

Rainy weather prompts calls from “people who are absolutely certain… that the Lord has taken the sun away,” for interfering with Moon, says weatherman
[via Twitter]

:giggle:

The Prisoner Is Coming In November


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It’s been a very long time since the original “The Prisoner” series was aired. 1967 in fact. It started Patrick McGoohan as #6 who also created the show. It was a very strange show for it’s time. One could say that it was “very” ahead of it’s time.

This November, AMC is going to air a new 6 part series of The Prisoner starring Ian McKellan as #2 and James Caviezel as #6. It’s a new imagining of the original series. A lot of similarities, yet many differences. “The Village” is not in Great Britain this time, but somewhere in Africa.

A 9 minute trailer was shown at Comic-Con and is now available to be viewed on the internet. You can go to the AMC website to watch it, or just click the image below. (You have to love the internet these days…)

I can’t wait for the series to run this fall. It looks to be a wonderful version of the amazing show that was.

Mobigame And Edge Get Support From The Chaos Engine


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It looks like Mobigame is getting some well deserved support from a forum of game developers called “The Chaos Engine“. The Chaos Engine is a group of over 7,000+ members. They have decided to setup a fund to help finance a fight against Langdell and his claims of owning the trademarks to the word “Edge” and several other words like “EDGY”.

The Chaos Engine will be setting up a donation button on there home page in the near future. If you feel that Mobigame deserves to keep it’s games name “Edge”, please go over to the site and donate a few bucks. Langdell needs to be stopped. Hopefully, with the support of TCE and Edge fans everywhere, we can get this evil person to stop this nonsense.

I’ll update this post as soon as The Chaos Engine’s home page has the donate button added to it.

Palm Testing Apple And It's Lawyers


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I’m not sure what is going on in the minds of the executives of Palm. I can see Palm “trying” the idea of configuring the Pre’s USB presence to fool iTunes into thinking that a Pre plugged into a Windows box or Mac box with iTunes installed is actually an iPod. They tried it, Apple didn’t like it and changed iTunes to not allow the trick. That should have been the end of the story.

Nope, what a surprise, Palm released new OS software to circumvent the adjustments Apple made and now the Pre’s USB port says that it’s an Apple device and an iPod.

In fact Palm seems to think that Apple is violating the Vender ID that Apple was issued by not allowing other companies to take advantage of Apple’s hard work (albeit, the purchase of the iTunes software. Still, they have made significant changes to that software since it was purchased).

“Palm has released webOS 1.1, which, along with offering more robust EAS support for business users, re-enables Palm media sync,” said company spokesperson Lynn Fox. “Palm believes that openness and interoperability offer better experiences for users by allowing them the freedom to use the content they own without interference across devices and services, so on behalf of consumers, we have notified the USB Implementers Forum of what we believe is improper use of the Vendor ID number by another member.” – MacRumors.com

It almost looks like Palm is trying to use it’s user base as a “human shield” for what will inevitably be one heck of a lawsuit in the near future. Hiding behind such well intentioned beliefs is not going to save Palm in the courts. At least it had better not.

Now, Apple has every right to protect its Intellectual Property. The next step will be Apple adjusting iTunes yet again to disallow the Pre from syncing with iTunes. Will the next step after that be Palm updating it’s WebOS to circumvent Apple change again? Or will the next step be Apple sicking it’s bank of lawyers on Pre?

Come to think of it. Isn’t there a law, something like the DMCA that should protect Apple from such attacks to it’s IP? Well, in fact, it’s “strictly prohibited” by the USB Implementers Forum for a start.

When you apply for a USB Vendor ID, you sign a form that explicitly states that:

“Unauthorized use of assigned or unassigned USB Vendor ID Numbers and associated Product ID Numbers are strictly prohibited.” – Also from MacRumors.com

Who knows what the future holds here, but I can say that I hope it’s resolved soon. I really don’t like the idea of installing several iTunes updates a month just because Palm is too damn lazy to write it’s own software for syncing music with it’s newest device.

Look out Apple Just Sneezed!


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What is it with Apple blogs and watching everything that Apple does? Is it always “a slow news day” with those blogs? Every, and I do mean every time Apple closes the Apple Store, there are literally 100+ blogs that post a blog entry telling it’s readers that the store has closed down. Then they start speculating what the close means. A new computer, iPhone, iPod, a modification to an existing computer, etc…

Its kind of sad really. I have to assume that there are hundreds of scripts running all over the place checking the Apple Store web site to see if that little yellow post-it note that says “We’ll be back soon.” is being displayed. Those scripts must set off pagers, notifications, emails and all sorts of other ways to let these bloggers know that it’s time to post a new blog post about the store being down.

The Apple Store isn’t the only place that these folks keep a keen eye on. Press releases, news from Apple business partners, the fiscal quarter conference calls, health reports of Steve Jobs to name a few. Hell, if Steve were to bruise himself and then have a picture taken with the bruise, there would all of a sudden be at least 50 blog posts speculating that the discoloration was a cancer, or some strange and exotic disease.

I love Apple and Apple products just as much as these blogs do, but my life doesn’t revolve around the company and its CEO. I love keeping up on what is happening at Apple just as much as the next Apple fanboy, but having to skim past 50 blog posts just because Steve Jobs took a shit is just a bit more than I can stand these days.

Edge Wins 'Best Challenging Game' From First Annual App Awards


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A big congratulations to Mobigame for winning the “Best Challenging Game” from App Awards!

Unfortunately, they are still having big problems with their fight against a supposed trademark holder for the word “Edge”. So, they overcame a huge obsticle with not being available for download in the AppStore for several weeks if not longer. Even the “Lite” version is now unavailable thanks to this fight.

There has been talk that there is a petition to remove Tim Langdell from the board of the IGDA (International Game Developers Association) due to his insistanse that he owns the rights to any product with the name “Edge” in it. I don’t know what the results are although there was a twitter post stating 148 yes and 2 no.

Who knows how long this is all going to go on for, but I’m sure we all wish the best for Mobigame and Edge. Hopefully this can be resolved soon and we can see the “Best Challenging Game” of the year back in the AppStore.

We Choose To Go To The Moon


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40 Years ago, this very day, man changed the world as we know it. From that day on, man actually stood on a soil other than Earth’s. There are those who believe that America fabricated the whole thing. I pity those people. There are people who are too young to have actually seen, live, the first pictures of man walking on the Moon. All that they have is video footage stored for prosperity.

The website wechoosethemoon.org is playing out the entire Apollo 11 mission as if it were happening today. All the audio transmissions from Mission Control to the spacecraft are being played in realtime. There is a mission clock to let you know how much time remains before the landing on the Moon and the next stage of their replay. As of this writing, it’s 6 hours, 26 minutes and 20 seconds before the Eagle lands on the Moon. Just under 4 hours before the next stage occurs.

Here are a couple of YouTube videos of the event just to save you from having to search YouTube yourself:

One of the few events of my childhood I remember was sitting in front of our television in the living room watching and waiting for the landing and then finally, the time when Neil and Buzz got out of the LEM and started their EVA’s on the Moon. It’s fuzzy now, but I’m pretty sure it was around 9pm. Which at my age of 8 years old, was past my bedtime. At least it was summer and I didn’t have to go to school the next day.

Something I am very happy to report is that all three astronauts are alive and well, although they are definitely showing their age.

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So for those of you out there that are old enough to remember this day 40 years ago, enjoy the remembrances that will be broadcast today. For those of you who are too young. This is a perfect time to learn about all that happened on the mission. Aside from the multitude of websites that cover the event, I suggest renting/buying the HBO miniseries From The Earth To The Moon. A wonderful account of the entire space race from President Kennedy’s 1962 speech to the last flight to the Moon by Apollo 17‘s Eugene A. Cernan, Harrison H. Schmitt and Ronald E. Evans.

AppStore Game Edge Needs Our Support


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Around 6 months ago, Mobigame came out with a truly unique game for the iPhone/iPod touch called EDGE [AppStore Link to Lite version]. After seeing the videos of the game, I didn’t hesitate to head over to the AppStore and buy a copy.

Mobigame was doing great with EDGE. They were recieving award after award for the game, then in May, all hell broke loose. Some yutz claimed that he owned the trademark for the word “EDGE”. Now, we know this is possible since Apple owns it’s trademark to the word Apple, and in order to defend that trademark, you have to go after any and all who use the word.

Since then, the game as been taken off the AppStore twice now. Once in May, then it was returned to the store after what appeared to be a truce between Mobigame and the yutz who was claiming the trademark. It has recently been pulled again in the last week. Apparently, that agreement has fallen through.

The problem is that apparently, the person who owns the trademark for the word EDGE hasn’t done anything with it in years and years. Other than attack any and all who use it in games. He even has attempted to grab Mirror’s Edge away from Electronic Arts. It appears that all the owner wants to do is sue people who use the name in order to make money. At least that is what it appears. If not, he’s not showing any moves to publish a new game. He hasn’t since 1994.

You can follow all this from Mobigame’s twitter page as well as countless blogs that are keeping up with this story.

Please, lets show our support for this wonderful indepentent game developer by heading over to the AppStore and pick up a copy of the free Edge Lite version. If you have never seen Edge, you really should check out the game. You will fall in love with it instantly.

Its really a great game and deserves to be back in the AppStore where it belongs.