I got my iMac back from repair today. Apparently the harddisk had blown up (after eight months? Weird), so tonight’s job will be to restore the thing courtesy of TimeMachine.
The real reason I have a Mac has been revealed. Or something.
Joc Nocera has a phone call:
On Thursday afternoon, several hours after I’d gotten my final “Steve’s health is a private matter” — and much to my amazement — Mr. Jobs called me. “This is Steve Jobs,” he began. “You think I’m an arrogant [expletive] who thinks he’s above the law, and I think you’re a slime bucket who gets most of his facts wrong.” After that rather arresting opening, he went on to say that he would give me some details about his recent health problems, but only if I would agree to keep them off the record. I tried to argue him out of it, but he said he wouldn’t talk if I insisted on an on-the-record conversation. So I agreed.
Because the conversation was off the record, I cannot disclose what Mr. Jobs told me. Suffice it to say that I didn’t hear anything that contradicted the reporting that John Markoff and I did this week. While his health problems amounted to a good deal more than “a common bug,” they weren’t life-threatening and he doesn’t have a recurrence of cancer. After he hung up the phone, it occurred to me that I had just been handed, by Mr. Jobs himself, the very information he was refusing to share with the shareholders who have entrusted him with their money.
You would think he’d want them to know before me. But apparently not.
HT: Daring Fireball.
And whaddayouknow: MobileMe has a blog:
Steve Jobs has asked me to write a posting every other day or so to let everyone know what’s happening with MobileMe, and I’m working directly with the MobileMe group to ensure that we keep you really up to date. In the 14 days since we launched, it’s been a rocky road and we know the pain some people have been suffering. Be assured people here are working 24-7 to improve matters, and we’re going to favor getting you new info hot off the presses even if we have to post corrections or further updates later.
One issue we encountered was a mail outage affecting 1% of our members. Last Friday [18 July] a serious problem with one of our mail servers blocked those members’ access to their MobileMe mail accounts. As of today a team was able to restore limited web access to those accounts so the affected members can use their browsers to read mail that has arrived since last Friday (though not before) as well as send and receive new mail. The team has already begun rolling out restoration of full access for all the accounts and expect to finish by the end of next week. We particularly regret to report the loss in the affected accounts of approximately 10% of the messages received between July 16 and July 18.
Again at HT to Daring Fireball.
I’ve noted it before but Apple’s communication strategies are truly … erm … fascinating. One point about MobileMe is that it is a paid service which means that losing customers’ mails for a week is not exactly a selling argument.
There is a rule somewhere which says that things screw up when you least need it. So today the iMac decided to take a holiday without telling me in advance. First, the thing wouldn’t shut down, then it wouldn’t start again but stuck at the grey screen.
The good news is that TimeMachine works nicely so I can access my data from the laptop but copying files still takes time.
Just out of pure spite: Things that blow up in Steve Jobs’s face.
Apple continues to amaze. I’ve never seen a company have a technical meltdown in front of the eyes of the world the way Apple did today. Yet when my son got out of the store after three hours of hell inside the store (we were snuck to the front of the line by someone who gave us cuts so that we could be among the first to get one, so that we could document what it was like for him to walk into the store and be #1 — he waited for two days) he said he still loved Apple and still loved his 3G iPhone.
That said, no other company in the world has so much brand love in reserve that it can get this reaction. Any other company in the world would have seen riots after it took more than an hour to process even a portion of the first group of 20 people to enter the store.
Here’s a frustrated Scoble caught by Venturebeat:
I can easily imagine what would have happened if, say, Microsoft had announced a major update to an application or an online service, only to see its servers blow up on the big day. Otherwise, just sign up to Twitter and see what happens when the service heads for the fjords.
Apple fanboys love this video of Windows 98 going blue in the face on Bill Gates. Too bad Steve Jobs wasn’t caught on camera Thursday or Friday. It is also pretty interesting that Apple’s “Hot News” page doesn’t mention Thursday’s and Friday’s problems at all. The company was incommunicado – the biggest no-no according to communication specialists.
For your information, I do not have an iPhone – if you call me, I will pick up a Nokia 6233 – but I spent most of Thursday with a very shaky (to say the least) connection to
dotmac MobileMe and also had to deal with some mysterious semi-update.
Rocketboom says it.