Thursday, August 25, 2011

Steve Jobs Resigns as CEO of Apple, Named Chairman of the Board of Directors

Letter from Steve Jobs
To the Apple Board of Directors and the Apple Community: 
I have always said if there ever came a day when I could no longer meet my duties and expectations as Apple’s CEO, I would be the first to let you know. Unfortunately, that day has come.
I hereby resign as CEO of Apple. I would like to serve, if the Board sees fit, as Chairman of the Board, director and Apple employee.
As far as my successor goes, I strongly recommend that we execute our succession plan and name Tim Cook as CEO of Apple.
I believe Apple’s brightest and most innovative days are ahead of it. And I look forward to watching and contributing to its success in a new role.
I have made some of the best friends of my life at Apple, and I thank you all for the many years of being able to work alongside you.

And with that, an era ends.

As many know, Steve's health issues have seen him take leaves of absence from his duties at Apple and, reading between the lines, this might be what forced the issue. I hope I'm reading this wrong!

Tim Cook becomes the fourth (fifth if you count the two stints Steve has as being separate) CEO at Apple. We all wait to see what will become of the company remembering how Apple faltered under CEOs other than Steve. Wall Street responded with a fall in stock price.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Watching Blu-Ray on a Mac

It seems like Steve Jobs has something against Blu-Ray having in the past described implementing it on the Mac as being "a world of hurt". MacGo or the Mac Blu-ray Player  didn't feel the hurt and developed what they describe as being "the first universal media player for Mac in the world". As I can't find an alternative, I can't dispute that claim (it also works on PCs and likely isn't the first on that platform). In addition to playing blu-ray movies on a Mac it has support for many other movie, video, audio, music and photo formats. It's like it's trying to be a VLC alternative with Blu-Ray capabilities. The system requirements for the MacOsX software is 10.5 or higher on at least an Intel Core2 Duo 2.4GHz.

So how well does it work? I borrowed a friends $30 Blu-Ray player and plugged it in the USB on my MacBook Pro. The computer recognized the drive and the software ran the movie. The stability was questionable (it crashed a couple of times on opening) and you don't want to have too much running in the background (it's a bit of a system hog) but it worked. I also tested it on a ripped Blu-Ray file and it worked better on that data so the problem may be with the inexpensive external drive my friend bought - but that's the only drive I have access to right now so I have no way to confirm either way.

The software is available now for free for 3 months so it's worth having a look at if you have an external drive. It does work well (menus aside) when playing ripped ISO files so I can recommend it for that function (and I won't even judge you as to from where you obtained those files :D) but so does VLC and I found that a little more stable.

As far as I know this is the only way to play Blu-Ray disks on a mac so it's a welcome addition. It's free for three months so it's worth downloading and testing to see if it fills the gap for you. It's $40 after the trial period.