Applesauce Meter Rises; will iPhone boost it more?

After some discussion with a friend of mine about Apple's pricing structure, I concede that it isn't completely overpriced. In fact, the higher end MacBook Pros are underpriced relative to something similar in the PC notebook universe. But the low end MacBooks still carry a price premium of a couple of hundred dollars.

So the Applesauce Meter moves from 5% applesauce to 20%. Still at 80% water, meaning 80% hype.

Now, many of you know that tomorrow is the 1st day of the Apple iPhone. Much hype has been thrown at it, a phenomenon well documented by my favorite journalism critic, editor Jack Shafer at Slate. It got a pretty upbeat but balanced review in the NYT from David Pogue and the WSJ's Walter Mossberg liked it too with some reservations.

You know that I am no iPod fan, and the iPhone looks like an iPod killer. That stupid scroll wheel concept is gone and the thing seems to look and act like the PADDs from Star Trek. So Apple is making some imperfect strides again. At least they are trying. But given the dearth of common cell phone features like txt msging and not being able to replace the battery without killing the device, Apple is still up to its old tricks: they wow you on the GUI and the body, but drive you nuts with odd limitations (only AT&T?) and lack of features (putting iTunes music on a non-iPod?).

It's becoming common knowledge that you don't buy 1.0 or even 2.0 of any Apple product. Only fanboys who will buy all the models need bother. This is unfortunate because Apple could expand its market share and polish its reputation even more if they didn't roll stuff out of their skunkworks prematurely to take another bite at your wallet.

The original iPhone, circa 2151?

Can't stop the signal

I can't attend, but there's a charity screening of Joss Whedon's movie Serenity, sequel to the beloved TV show Firefly, all around the world this weekend, Whedon's birthday. Money is being raised for Equality Now, his favorite charity.

Details are here.

Previous gushing by ToT about Firefly is here.

Be a big damn hero and participate at the Arlington Cinema and Drafthouse this weekend.

No chocolate cake for breakfast

Dr. Trackball is away on a business trip, rolling all over the country and leaving ToT with Minnie and Micro in his charge. I've been a single parent.

It's not easy, but not impossible. My biggest challenge, other than maintaining 1) my sanity, 2) a semblance of responsible parenting and 3) the house, has been to live up to the dad-is-in-charge stories of yore.

But I haven't let the kids have chocolate cake for breakfast.

I'm such a guy failure. The best I can muster is letting certain housework slide. There are no pizza boxes littered around the house, no massively fun outings that Mom would never attempt, no horrible dad slipups, like sending children to school with no lunch. There has been a Chuck E. Cheese run and a Three Stooges DVD Netflixed just to show that things are different without Mom around. I even cut the kids a break on a mental health day off that I took, the end result of which was driving myself crazy and cutting hours of me-time out of the day for no discernible benefit to the kids.

Parental martyrs, whom I already hold in low opinion, are even lower in my estimation given my brief brush with their kind of living. It can't be all about the kids because it's bad for everyone. The next day off the kids will be going to school on time.

So today, we're off to see Shrek 3, even though I'd rather see Pirates or follow my usual Sunday routine and bury my face in some video games or writing. Micro may ruin the whole thing, but Minnie hasn't been able to do much that she wanted given the depleted parental ability to take the kids to separate activities.