Chris Elliott, professor of food safety and microbiology at Queen’s University Belfast, via guardian.co.uk
The more I read about the horsemeat scandal, the more I wonder why it’s such a big deal that the bits of gristle and cartilage and offal that get ground into burgers come from horses instead of cows. Except for the labelling. But if the labelling said “cow eyeballs and bits of hoof”, people probably wouldn’t be that thrilled anyway.
On iPad, Redux
Back at the start of 2010, I wrote a short article on the recent arrival of the iPad. At the time, no one really knew what the iPad actually was, and certainly not what it was going to be, but that didn’t stop anyone speculating, and I was no different:
There are a couple of apps that would make this a no-brainer purchase for me:
- A version of Remote. This is a fantastic app on the iPhone, and it would make the iPad an awesome music controller - imagining a version of Remote incorporating the features of the iPod app shown on the iPad, coupled with AirTunes. I think this is almost a certainty.
- Decent note-taking capability. I’m studying a part-time MSc, and having my textbooks, lecture note PDFs, and note-taking capability all in one convenient, unobtrusive device would be superb. A laptop is just a little bit too much (same goes for business meetings). I’m hopeful that Evernote - which I use heavily - comes up with something in this area.
Pretty quickly, Apple released an iPad version of the Remote app. Teamed with AirPlay, this is a very good dual purpose tool: on the one hand, fighting gamely to keep my expensively assembled iTunes music library relevant in the face of streaming pretenders such as Spotify (who just, finally, released an iPad app of its own, and which also benefits from AirPlay support (related reading: Cheap Will Be Smart. Expensive Will Be Dumb)); on the other, turning the iPad into a smart remote control for the Apple TV (for which, for some reason, Apple continue to ship an awkward, limited, line-of-sight physical remote in the box), making it effortlessly easy to combine access to streamed music and video from the internet with media from your own library (my one bugbear with this is that you have to have a computer running and logged on somewhere in the house in order to access the library, though Apple are chipping away at this with iCloud).
My second wish? Well, I’ve continued to use Evernote avidly to store lecture notes, meeting notes, bookmarks, recipes, invoices, etc, but have had to supplement it with further apps for hand-writing based note-taking: iAnnotate PDF for annotating PDFs (does what it says on the tin!), particularly in lectures, and Penultimate for note-taking in meetings (I’ve also started to use Paper for scribbling and sketching). However, this week, Evernote announced their acquisition of Penultimate, and it’s reasonable to assume that this will see the addition of hand-written note-taking capability embedded directly within Evernote (though a cautionary note: the previous acquisition of Skitch hasn’t yet seen its functionality embedded in Evernote — these are often talent acquisitions as much or more than feature acquisitions…).
Now, I’m not claiming that my 2010 article was visionary brilliance. Far from it. The fact that the iPad has met these requirements is testament to the unexpectedly broad success of the iPad, rather than any special insight.But it’s still incredible to me that you can legitimately say “imagine if…” and have a reasonable expectation that your imagination wasn’t all that far fetched after all.