Light & Dark

by neel

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Presenting lighting, theatre and weather: formerly from the hills of Yorkshire, with bits and pieces of the Yorkshire Sculpture Park and trips to Edinburgh; when the music stops, where will neel end up?
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Weblog: Enlightening Times
Email: neil at notlikecalvin dot com

Random Light & Darkness:

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Badge Of Honour

(viewed 614 times)
The Store staff all wore black Steve-esque t-shirts with this small badge on the left shoulder, a rectangular block of plasticy-rubber with an embossed Apple. Cool. I had to get a picture, and one of the staffers was happy to oblige, if a little weirded-out.

Hey - this was a pilgrimage!

I thanked him and told him how happy I was to see the place so busy. Because I was.
12th Feb 2005, 16:26   comments (0)


(viewed 488 times)
The staircase is almost non-existent. By this time I'd played with everything I'd wanted to, I'd seen the sights, and we were getting ready to leave. We'd been in the Store for an hour, the place was still heaving with people and long queues at both checkouts. There were only a couple of things left to do...
12th Feb 2005, 16:08   comments (0)


(viewed 463 times)
I went back into the movies section and found myself a PowerMac with dual 32-inch screens, Final Cut keyboard, a Logitech jogwheel and all Apple's video editing software installed. Those screens are huge. Stupidly huge.

Mainly I wanted to have a fiddle with iDVD, see what's changed in the iLife '05 version. The new motion themes are pretty, the map overview's a lot nicer but there's nothing particularly revolutionary on top of iDVD's revolutionary-easy functionality. It'll be nice to burn DVD±R, though.

I also fiddled with Final Cut Pro HD, which is lovely. The coloured keyboard is a nice luxury item and a jogwheel would be cool if you knew what button did what. I can dream...
12th Feb 2005, 16:03   comments (0)

Mac mini

(viewed 564 times)
Wow. These are tiny! Most of the demo units throughout the store used Apple's lovely flatscreens, and this mini was driving a 23-inch model which seemed huge compared to my 17". Whenever I started using one of the demo units there would always be a huge amount of apps already left open by previous customers: this one had at least Word, Excel, Pages, Keynote, iTunes, Photoshop CS, iCal, Mail and Safari - all on 512MB! I don't like to have that much open even with my G5, but I didn't notice much slowdown on the mini's G4.

I'm almost certainly going to upgrade to iLife '05 so I had a play with the new features in iPhoto: much more editing power and the books are very pretty. Pages looks very impressive: I opened one of the templates and generated a PDF which scaled absolutely beautifully! Keynote also has some serious whizz-bang spangles.

Overall I was very impressed with the mini. While I was there the crowds of people kept ebbing and flowing around the demo tables - people picking up the price display stands, thinking "is that all?" I don't need one since I'm all iMac'd up at the moment, but I'd have to think seriously about a tricked-out mini over an iMac if I was in that position again.
12th Feb 2005, 15:52   comments (3)


(viewed 547 times)
I couldn't get enough of the staircase, particularly with the lights shining up through it. By now it was pretty dark outside the store, and there was plenty more to see inside.
12th Feb 2005, 15:40   comments (0)

Genius Bar

(viewed 595 times)
The Holiest of Holies! See the aura of light surrounding Apple's finest!

I didn't have a problem but I swung by the bar just to get a glimpse of
the Geniuses (Genii?) at work, spreading the love and healing the
12th Feb 2005, 13:12   comments (0)

The Theatre

(viewed 500 times)
After roaming around the ground floor a while I went up the shiny stairs and sat in on the end of a GarageBand demo/q&a; in the Theatre. The seats are really comfy. The screen is really good. The demo guy knew his stuff and wasn't afraid of saying "no, GarageBand can't do that: you probably need Logic Express". He also stuck around after his slot was over to answer questions one-to-one - his job mainly seemed to be free project support and encouragement. Only Apple.

What really surprised me was that lots of the people there - and all 'round the Store - had their own PowerBooks and iBooks with them, and were web browsing or following along with the demo. The Store was very busy, but I'd imagine that a less busy time would make it an ideal place to relax and enjoy the wifi in the glow of Apple's flagship Store for the whole world.
12th Feb 2005, 13:03   comments (0)


(viewed 605 times)
I had several things to check out - first up was the iPod shuffle which seems to have attained a sort of mythic status in my brain. There were so many people crowded 'round the iPod demo tables! The shuffle is tiny - it was hard to tell how much it actually weighed because of the security cables stuck to it, but it's definitely barely there. The sound is great (the Shure headphones on the demo units really help) and I'm not at all phased by the lack of a display: I've not had much practice with a normal iPod but in many ways I prefer just letting the shuffle do its thing instead of hunting through menus. And the price is great. But, aside from spending four hours on a coach to London every now and then, I don't need a portable music whatsit right now.
12th Feb 2005, 12:50   comments (6)