I have to admit, I’m a little disappointed with Apple’s lack of any hardware announcements today. Mostly because i hold Apple stock, and “The Street” had high expectations for new products today – I’m holding my breath to see what happens short-term to their stock price.

But, if you look under the hood, Apple is making some significant investments in their foundational platform. These investments should play out very favorably over the next months and years.

iCloud – my biggest complaint with iCloud is that storage was expensive, and integration was clunky. That’s all changed. Apple announced pricing today that is 25% of the cost as dropbox, with what I would argue is better integration if you are in the Apple ecosystem. I also found it interesting that they showcased other 3rd party cloud integrations, with dropbox not showing up at all.

Health – Their new health app and health kit will enable 3rd parties to contribute to a centralized view of your individual health and wellness. Additionally, it will allow you to communicate and collaborate with your medical providers.

Home and Family – As a frustrated user of smart-things, I realize the need for a well-designed, central location of connected things in your home. Don’t under-estimate this announcement from Apple. It will slowly revolutionize how you manage your home. Apple is also being very coy about the power of their new entry into their understanding of your family. A common notion of “family” is extremely powerful. Apple will eventually give me the tools to manage my home schedule, devices, and media from a central location.

Messaging and Phone Calls – Apple has finally achieved integration with your cellular presence and your computer usage. Being able to transfer phone calls from your phone to your laptop, and back again, was a pleasant surprise for me.

Metal – Apple is quietly eliminating console gaming platforms. Metal boots 3D performance so significantly on iOS devices that you will be able to use your iPhone to play games that will rival consoles 9at least for 90% of consumers – there will be that ‘fringe’ 10% of gamers that notice the shadows are not quite as deep, or that the polygon count is a little rougher than a console game). If Apple finally pulls the AppleTV out of “Hobby” status, the combination of iOS and the AppleTV could totally eliminate the console gaming industry.

Swift – Apple is doing for their developers what they have done for most consumers – they are making the development process more approachable. By simplifying code, and abstracting many of the common, difficult coding tasks into toolkits, they are making the world of development easier to enter. I believe the new development language Apple announced today, Swift, will double their development community in the next 18 months.

But, the most intriguing thing to me about what Apple announced today, was how integrated their thinking is. The features in iOS and OSX are integrated thoughtfully. Their toolkits for developers allow those developers to take advantage of Apple’s advances extraordinary quickly. And, after many poorly designed tries, they are starting to leverage The Cloud in a way that will actually emancipate their customers from technology





Kint M:
11:02:20 PM
Welcome to the Microsoft Answer Desk!
My name is Kint and how may I help you today?
11:02:26 PM
I have just purchased Windows 8.1 download edition
but, I can’t download it – the download link gives me an EXE file and not the ISO file for Windows 8.1
I don’t have a PC with windows running in order to run the exe file
Kint M:
11:03:49 PM
That’s a very tough situation to be in. Let’s work together to turn this around immediately.
May I have your full name, email address and phone number please? It is for my documentation.
11:04:04 PM
Anthony Franco
Kint M:
11:04:51 PM
Thank you Anthony.
May I know what operating system you are currently using? Is it MAC?
11:05:14 PM
yes, mac
I want to install windows on bootcamp
Kint M:
11:05:56 PM
I see.
For you to be able to download the ISO file for Windows 8, you will really need to download it using a computer that is running Windows.
You may need to ask someone you know that are using Windows computer Anthony.
11:07:13 PM
I want a refund
Kint M:
11:08:23 PM
May I know why you want a refund Anthony?
11:08:53 PM
In order for me to use your product, I need to have a copy of your product to use it
do you understand the irony in that ?
I don’t want to support a company that makes it this difficult to buy from them
are you still there ?
Kint M:
11:11:07 PM
Yes I’m still here.
11:11:10 PM
your website is now giving me errors that i’m not signed in anymore
Kint M:
11:12:28 PM
I understand where you are coming from Anthony.
How about this, purchasing the back up disc for Windows 8.
11:13:42 PM
so, make another purchase and wait for it to arrive in the mail ?
Kint M:
11:14:19 PM
Yes Anthony. approximately for about 5 to 10 business days.
11:14:48 PM
that is not an acceptable solution
Kint M:
11:15:59 PM
Alright Anthony, for the refund, It is best that you contact our Microsoft store.
I can provide you there contact information.
11:16:25 PM
Kint M:
11:16:30 PM
You can reach them at this number 1-877-696-7786 .
Thank you for contacting Microsoft Answer Desk. Have a good day!
Your Answer Tech has ended your chat session. Thanks for visiting Answer Desk.


Technologists have always pushed the boundaries of gathering and distributing information.Early in our history, we used stories, fables and myths to communicate values, lessons and historical context.

The invention of paper allowed us to record our history, and the printing press gave us the ability to distribute information to more than just the anointed few.

We declared the pen mightier than the sword and we endeavored to create faster ways of distributing the words we wrote. Napoleon’s semaphores, Morse’s telegraph, Bell’s telephone and Licklider’s Intergalactic Computer Network, were all inventions designed in the race to deliver faster, ubiquitous and affordable information.

Simultaneously, inventors sought to enhance human capabilities through mechanization.
Jacquard’s mechanical loom, Hollerith’s tabulating machine, Turing’s universal machine and the 1946 ENIAC, were all innovations designed in the race to automate human capabilities.

The arguably inevitable advances in telecommunications, storage, computing power and binary abstraction gave us the ability to commoditize delivery, infrastructure, platforms and software.

A pretentious monument of fiber, silicon and code.

I believe that we have sought only to solve problems as engineers, and not as empathetic human beings. and that we must lose our technophile bigotry before we become relegated to the ranks of tech support.

I believe our industry must abandon its desire to mechanize people by relegating them to “users”

We are now faced with innovating a new era for humanity. An era where the human condition will be transformed through the technology we design.

The infrastructure now exists for rapidly deploying advanced, scalable, and complex systems, but our legacy will be written by the interfaces we create.

For the last 8 years I have been blogging and speaking to convince companies why user experience matters. They now get it.

For the last year, we have seen exponential growth in our space. Even though my company, EffectiveUI, was the first, we are certainly no longer the only firm saying that designing for user need is critical for success. However, we are entering a time where those words are becoming commoditized. Just because a company understands how to talk about the value of what we do does not mean they understand the practice, the “how”.

I have made a conscious decision last year to focus my energy on defining the DNA of a successfully launched software product. I asked the EffectiveUI team, “end-to-end, what does it take to define and build something that meets business, user, and technical objectives?” I studied not only the strategy,  research and design practices, but also the development methodologies that are most successful.

It would be egotistical (or, should I say even more egotistical) for me to say the world should come to only us if they want to get things done in the right way. The entire team at EffectiveUi has recognized that our customers have a desire to use us to get the important projects our quickly, but also need to bring user experience in-house. This is a macro-trend right now; companies are scouring for UX talent while attempting to create their own UX culture.

To that end, we created an arm of EffectiveUI focused on education and training. For our customers, we have developed a flexible curriculum to help them adopt the world’s best practices. For the community, we have partnered with Galvanize’s gSchool to train the next generation of practitioners.

The gSchool philosophy is cleverly unique. They understand that intensive, skills-based learning is the future and, if their first offering is any indication, they have hit the nail on the head. Our program, geared for training “Experience Architects“, will train designers on how to work through all aspects of leading a user-experience focused design initiative.

I’m looking forward to helping our lead instructors teach the “how” in the coming year and watching the first class go on to build amazing products…




%d bloggers like this: