Tag Archives | iPad

Apple’s Chinese Workers Treated ‘Inhumanely, Like Machines’ — Some Sign ‘Anti-Suicide’ Pledge

Magical iPadWondering how that Apple “magic” happens at that “unbelievable” price? Gethin Chamberlain writes in the Guardian:

An investigation into the conditions of Chinese workers has revealed the shocking human cost of producing the must-have Apple iPhones and iPads that are now ubiquitous in the west.

The research, carried out by two NGOs, has revealed disturbing allegations of excessive working hours and draconian workplace rules at two major plants in southern China. It has also uncovered an “anti-suicide” pledge that workers at the two plants have been urged to sign, after a series of employee deaths last year.

The investigation gives a detailed picture of life for the 500,000 workers at the Shenzhen and Chengdu factories owned by Foxconn, which produces millions of Apple products each year. The report accuses Foxconn of treating workers “inhumanely, like machines”.

Among the allegations made by workers interviewed by the NGOs — the Centre for Research on Multinational Corporations and Students & Scholars Against Corporate Misbehaviour (Sacom) – are claims that…

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Imagine Free Beer At Your Office, But You Are Recorded For How Much You Drink…

Photo: Strom Carlson (CC)

Photo: Strom Carlson (CC)

Ryan Flinn reports for Bloomberg:

At Yelp Inc.’s San Francisco headquarters, a keg refrigerator provides a never-ending supply of beer to employees, letting them drink as much as they like.

They just have to be comfortable with full disclosure: Workers badge in to an iPad application attached to the keg that records every ounce they drink.

“If you’re at the top of the leader board consistently, I don’t know if that’s a place that you’d want to be,” said Eric Singley, director of Yelp consumer and mobile products. “Luckily, that hasn’t really even been an issue.”

In a contemporary version of “Mad Men” and its bibulous ad executives, more dot-coms are embracing the idea of drinking at work. That means keeping bars stocked at all hours, installing kegerators and letting programmers tip back a few while they code. It also raises questions about the effect of alcohol on productivity and the safety of employees.

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Half Of All Tablet Users Transmit Sensitive Data

Evan-Amos (CC)

Evan-Amos (CC)

48% of tablet owners have used their tablet device to transmit sensitive data, according to a new online survey by Harris Interactive.

This compares to just 30% of smartphone users, though it’s younger adults (aged 18-34) who are more likely to than adults.

52% of tablet owners between the ages of 18 and 34 say they’re confident about transmitting sensitive data over their tablet device, versus just 41% between the ages of 35 and 34, and 28% between the ages of 45 and 54. (While just 33% of people over the age of 55 shared the same confidence.)

“There may be an psychological explanation for the main tablet vs smartphone security point,” notes one technology site. “Somebody using a tablet – even though its on a wireless connection – may think of it in the same way as a computer, where it’s well established people are usually happy to transmit sensitive data…With a smartphone, there’s still more of a psychological reminder that any information you send is literally beamed through the air.”

There’s also some other caveats.… Read the rest

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Rupert Murdoch To Launch iPad-Only Newspaper

From Los Angeles Times:

Rupert Murdoch, chief executive of News Corp., is hoping to lure the next generation of newspaper readers with the launch early next year of the Daily, an iPad-centric newspaper currently in development at News Corp.’s Manhattan offices, according to the New York Times.

Murdoch is sinking about $30 million into this venture, which will have a staff of about 100. It’s the first “newspaper” designed exclusively for tablet computers and is expected to include integrated media and photography constructed especially for the iPad, the New York Times said.

The Daily will incorporate some content from the rest of Murdoch’s media empire (Fox Sports will provide some video), but the majority of the Daily’s content is expected to be original, according to the report.

[Continues at LA Times]… Read the rest

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I’m Homeless and This Is Why I Have an iPad

Image: Sam Spratt / Gizmodo

Image: Sam Spratt / Gizmodo

This is really interesting, it’s not what you’d expect. Homeless in Paris writes on Gizmodo:

I’m homeless, very homeless, dirt broke and all, but I still own an iPad and a MSI Wind u130 netbook. These, I feel, are essential tools … Being without a home is not that big a deal in today’s world, but having connections to the rest of the world is pretty important.

Choice: I am homeless by choice, I gave away and sold all my belongings in Los Angeles and moved to Paris. My tourist visa is expired. I’m definitely not allowed to be here, but I still work when I want, and tend to pretty much live the life of Riley. But when I need to get in contact with someone, from a friend to the Paris transportation authority to complain about a misfared ticket, it’s hard to work without McDonald’s Wi-Fi.

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James Joyce’s ‘Ulysses’ Censored Again — This Time By Apple

Definitely interesting, considering the publication history of this book (it was banned in the United States for over 10 years). Nick Spence writes on Macworld UK:

A comic book adaptation of James Joyce’s notoriously challenging epic Ulysses is now available on the App Store, but only after Apple demanded cuts.

Rob Berry and Josh Levitas launched the ambitious webcomic version of the classic novel, one of the most important works of Modernist literature, earlier this year under the title Ulysses Seen. The comic includes only cartoon nudity, which the pair had to remove before Apple would approve the app.

Ulysses Seen

“Apple has strict guidelines and a rating system to prevent ‘adult content.’ Their highest mature content rating is 17+, which doesn’t seem to be a problem since no one reads Ulysses at sixteen anyway. But their guidelines also mean no nudity whatsoever. Which is something we never planned for,” Berry told Robot 6.

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Apple iPad-Maker Foxconn Makes Employees Promise Not To Kill Themselves

The iPad KillsThe Sydney Morning Herald reports:

Apple manufacturer Foxconn was taking extraordinary measures to safeguard its business and workers following a spate of suicides at its sprawling plant in southern China.

Workers have reportedly been told to sign letters promising not to kill themselves and even agree to be institutionalised if they appeared to be in an “abnormal mental or physical state for the protection of myself and others”.

Nets were also reportedly being hung around buildings to deter suicidal employees.

The moves came after a 19-year-old employee fell to his death at the Shenzhen factory — the ninth apparent suicide at the enormous site this year.

The deaths have raised questions about the conditions for millions of factory workers in China, especially at Foxconn, where labour activists and employees say long hours, low pay and high pressure are the norm.

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Are Apps The Online Equivalent Of White Flight?

AppStore_iconDoes anyone agree with Virginia Heffernan’s New York Times essay about the rise of apps being equivalent to “the online equivalent of white flight”?

The Web is a teeming commercial city. It’s haphazardly planned. Its public spaces are mobbed, and signs of urban decay abound in broken links and abandoned projects. Malware and spam have turned living conditions in many quarters unsafe and unsanitary. Bullies and hucksters roam the streets. An entrenched population of rowdy, polyglot rabble seems to dominate major sites.

People who find the Web distasteful — ugly, uncivilized — have nonetheless been forced to live there: it’s the place to go for jobs, resources, services, social life, the future. But now, with the purchase of an iPhone or an iPad, there’s a way out, an orderly suburb that lets you sample the Web’s opportunities without having to mix with the riffraff. This suburb is defined by apps from the glittering App Store: neat, cute homes far from the Web city center, out in pristine Applecrest Estates.

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Obama Doesn’t Know How To Use iPod Or Xbox, But Says They Are Bad

Obama Hates iPadsCome on Barack, we’d expect this from your precedessor, but not you, young Mr. Change. Story from AFP:

US President Barack Obama lamented Sunday that in the iPad and Xbox era, information had become a diversion that was imposing new strains on democracy, in his latest critique of modern media.

Obama, who often chides journalists and cable news outlets for obsessing with political horse race coverage rather than serious issues, told a class of graduating university students that education was the key to progress.

“You’re coming of age in a 24/7 media environment that bombards us with all kinds of content and exposes us to all kinds of arguments, some of which don’t always rank all that high on the truth meter,” Obama said at Hampton University, Virginia.

“With iPods and iPads and Xboxes and PlayStations, — none of which I know how to work — information becomes a distraction, a diversion, a form of entertainment, rather than a tool of empowerment, rather than the means of emancipation,” Obama said.

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Why Apple Hates Flash

No Flash!Steve Jobs himself, spell outs Apple’s reasons for not allowing Flash on their famed devices on Apple’s website:

Apple has a long relationship with Adobe. In fact, we met Adobe’s founders when they were in their proverbial garage. Apple was their first big customer, adopting their Postscript language for our new Laserwriter printer. Apple invested in Adobe and owned around 20% of the company for many years. The two companies worked closely together to pioneer desktop publishing and there were many good times. Since that golden era, the companies have grown apart. Apple went through its near death experience, and Adobe was drawn to the corporate market with their Acrobat products. Today the two companies still work together to serve their joint creative customers — Mac users buy around half of Adobe’s Creative Suite products — but beyond that there are few joint interests.

I wanted to jot down some of our thoughts on Adobe’s Flash products so that customers and critics may better understand why we do not allow Flash on iPhones, iPods and iPads.

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