MaCinJay’s Musings

another case of inverse vandalism

Posts Tagged ‘South Africa

iPod touch update

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Following Steve Jobs’s keynote at last week’s Macworld Expo I made the observation that international iPod touch owners (or at least those without iTunes Stores in their countries) had been left high and dry because they were unable to buy the upgrade that he announced. In fact though there is a workaround, albeit a convoluted one.

A while back I tried to open an iTunes account but was stymied because I didn’t have a US credit card or address. After that I read somewhere that you could also make purchases from the iTunes Stores using iTunes vouchers but never bothered to look into it further. My interest was rekindled after Jobs’s keynote – I wanted that upgrade.

I learned that iTunes vouchers were available for purchase on eBay and bought a $25 voucher with a $4 markup using PayPal. All that remained was to find a suitable address in the US so that I could redeem the voucher under “Quick Links” in the iTunes Store.

Once all that had been done I was able to buy the upgrade. Even better, I’ve bought a few songs and downloaded the pilot to Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles for free!

I still have to question Apple’s wisdom here though. While it may be convenient for the company to leverage off the iTunes Store to sell these type of upgrades, it doesn’t make much sense from a distribution standpoint. In countries like South Africa distribution rights for music content are jealousy protected, which is presumably why there is no iTunes Store here yet. But Apple is free to sell its software anywhere in the world, so why restrict sales unnecessarily and leave people to resort to complicated workarounds?

Surely Apple should have come up with a more appropriate platform.

Written by macinjay

January 24, 2008 at 10:35 pm

Firmware updates

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Apple has released firmware update 1.1.2 for the iPhone and iPod touch. This has inter alia added support for international keyboard layouts and – in the case of the touch – the ability to add and update events in the calendar. The latter feature addresses the touch’s most glaring weakness from a software point of view.

I’ve had a chance to use the touch for a week now and have been really impressed. For my money the best feature isn’t the music player, it’s the Safari Internet browser. I’ve always been lukewarm about the desktop version of Safari, preferring Firefox’s greater flexibility, but it works great on the touch. A nice feature is that when using your finger to scroll up or down in a web page there is a “bouncing” effect when you reach the limit of the page. It’s an effective way of showing that you can’t go any further – like hitting a wall in real life, only without the pain. A small touch but one that nicely showcases Apple’s legendary attention to detail.

My only real complaint is that it is too easy to accidentally activate links, which I mentioned in my last post. (That and the fact that it would be nice to have a larger viewing area – is there an Tablet Mac in the works?) It makes me wish that it the touch was not reliant on Wi-Fi so that I could use it all the time. When oh when will Apple release the iPhone in South Africa?

Written by macinjay

November 13, 2007 at 10:20 pm

Boks triumphant

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South Africa 15 – England 6 In the end my dream final didn’t live up to expectations. SA looked like they were playing within themselves, content to contest England in an aerial chess match. This is a mark of the quality of the side; unlike the much-fancied New Zealand they were able to adapt their style of play to the circumstances in this tournament. Before the game there was a worry about the Bok’s srummaging, but England’s supposed dominance in this phase never materialised. Perhaps it might have been different if Mark Cueto’s try had been allowed but I felt that SA were playing within themselves and would have been able to step up a gear or two if necessary. In any event I think that there can few arguments that the best side won the tournament.

Written by macinjay

October 22, 2007 at 10:03 am

England rise from the ashes

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Who would have thunk it? Unfancied England defeated Australia earlier this afternoon in a hard-fought Rugby World Cup 1/4 Final 12 points to 10. The English dominated the Wallabies up front and were a completely different side from the one that got a drubbing from the Boks in the pool matches. As always Australia looked threatening when their backs managed to get their hands on the ball – their winger Lote Tiqiri scored the only try of the match in the first half – but England denied them possession at the all-important breakdowns. The pressure told and Australia conceded a series of penalties; England flyhalf Jonny Wilkinson converted enough of these to see them through (although Australian captain Stirling Mortlock missed a difficult penalty with three minutes to go that could have turned it the other way).

One step closer to my dream final of South Africa v England. England will have their work cut out for them to get there (they face either home nation France or favourites New Zealand in the semis), but then no-one expected them to get this far in the first place.

Written by macinjay

October 6, 2007 at 5:49 pm

South Africa soar over the Eagles

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Actually it wasn’t as easy as my title would suggest, despite the scoreline: 64-15. The Americans gave a spirited performance, scoring two well-worked tries. South Africa missed a lot of first-time tackles, an area coach Jake White will no doubt be working on in the build-up to the 1/4 final against Fiji. The Bok’s backline play though – with the exception of a few handling errors and misplaced passes – was a joy to behold.

Written by macinjay

October 1, 2007 at 6:04 am

Posted in Rugby

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Wales knocked out

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Perhaps not unexpectedly Fiji beat Wales earlier today 38-34 in the Rugby World Cup, setting up a 1/4 final clash with the Boks. I’m not sure if this is good news or not. South Africa needs to be clinical and take out Fiji up front. If on the other hand they play like they did against Tonga, they may run into problems.

Written by macinjay

September 30, 2007 at 1:57 am

Posted in Rugby

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England v Tonga

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I followed this World Cup Rugby match online because the South African Broadcasting Corporation isn’t showing it. (Note to self: must get Satellite TV!) England won 36-20, which doesn’t surprise me. Tonga have had a great tournament with a close win over Samoa and a five-point loss to South Africa. Tellingly though the Boks started with their second-string side who also failed to impress in the warm-up game against Irish club side Connaught. In the second half they turned the game around by bringing on some of the first-choice players, but then failed to keep it tight in the latter stages and had Frans Steyn sent off. As a result the final score flattered Tonga. On the other hand England also stuttered against Samoa but in the end their dominance in the set-pieces saw them through 44-22. Hopefully they can take their game up another notch against Australia in the quarters!

 

Written by macinjay

September 28, 2007 at 10:31 pm