By Gregory MonePosted 08.08.2007 at 2:43 pm 0 Comments
A few more tantalizing rumors were making their way around the web last week regarding Apple's scheduled announcement yesterday, but the debut of the revamped iMac computer is still exciting news.
First of all, the new all-in-one model, which comes in 20- and 24-inch versions, is cheaper than its predecessors. Apple cut $300 off the price tag of the larger version, and $200 from the smaller one.
And on the features front, Apple added some new tricks and enhanced capabilities to its iLife suite of apps, particularly with photo management and video. And to appease the workaholic PC devotee so brilliantly depicted by John Hodgman in those Apple ads, the company also added Numbers, a new spreadsheet program. The company hopes the new models will further boost sales, which have been outpacing the rest of the PC manufacturers for a while now.—Gregory Mone
If you're a regular listener to the PopSci Podcast, you already know how proud we are of the reporting being done by Jonathan Coulton, our far-flung correspondent dutifully manning PopSci's satellite office on the moon, Lunar Base One. We're so proud, in fact, that we recently sent up Jonathan's first-ever live visitor in the form of Mr. John Hodgman—author of the all-purpose reference work The Areas of My Expertise, the Daily Show's expert-of-all-trades or, of course, that totally square PC guy. Aside from delivering a fresh shipment of Yoo-hoo and Doritos, Mr. Hodgman let Jonathan in on the real story behind those fuzzy undersea lobsters.
Code Monkey like hot chicks more than he like you.
A really neat thing about PopSci: Not only do we have contributing writers and editors but also a contributing troubador. Seriously: Singer-songwriter Jonathan Coulton is listed right there on our masthead, and his services—which have included creating an entire soundtrack for last year's Future of the Body issue and reporting live from the 2006 Consumer Electronics Show with comedian John Hodgman (of Daily Show fame)—are indispensible. They're about to be even more indispensible beginning this Monday, when we launch a series of podcasts in which Coulton interviews the movers and shakers of sci-tech...from the moon. Stay tuned for that.
Meanwhile, one of Coulton's coolest songs, "Code Monkey," a catchy ditty about a computer guy with an unrequited crush, has recently been turned into a most excellent machinima video by the whiz kids at Tra5h Ta1k. But doesn't making a video out of someone else's song violate copyright laws? Why, no, not in this case—and we're so glad you asked—because Coulton licensed his song as "some rights reserved" through Creative Commons, the alternative copyrighting nonprofit started by Stanford genius Lawrence Lessig.
But get this: Just days after the "Code Monkey" video went live, an opportunistic capitalist started selling T-shirts and mousepads emblazoned with the song's refrain, "Code Monkey Like Fritos." This was flattering but not kosher, since the song was licensed for noncommercial sharing only, and Coulton had to nicely ask the T-shirt seller to stop. And then he started selling his own "Code Monkey" gear, which is now available at Cafepress. I should probably get one for free after all the href-ing and Coulton-hyping I just did. Ahem. —Megan Miller
year ago this week, we sent John Hodgman, along with his pal and our contributing troubador Jonathan Coulton, to the E3 videogame conference to do some podcasting for us. The results were hilarious [download them here, here and here], and apparently people noticed. Today Hodgman is not only the "Resident Expert" on The Daily Show but also stars in Apple's latest "Get a Mac" TV ads, in which he plays a hapless PC to a younger, hipper Mac. Oh, and he was recently profiled in Time magazine as one of the most innovative comedians today. OK, maybe Hodgman's best-selling humor book, Areas of My Expertise, helped fuel his meteoric rise to fame, but at least we can say we knew him when. —Mike Haney
More Coulton and Hodgman podcasts: Best of What's New Showcase, CES2006
New Apple ads [apple.com/getamac/ads]
Download five free original songs inspired by this issue, then burn them to a CD and cut out the CD-case cover art below
By John HodgmanPosted 08.01.2005 at 2:00 am 5 Comments
Last February, PopSci added a new name to its list of contributors: Jonathan Coulton, Contributing Troubadour. So who is this guy, and what is he doing to earn that unique title? With Our Bodies, Ourselves, Our Cybernetic Arms, we are pleased to provide the answers to both of those questions, and many more.
It has long been a maxim that science is best explained in song (Nikola Tesla, you will recall, had a great music-hall hit with his "Principles of Alternating Current" and was himself a whiz on the zither).