Friday, February 22, 2013

Watch this space

Although I cut my computing teeth on Apple computers (the venerable Apple IIe way back in 1981 actually) [I had a Sinclair with a silly rubber keyboard: Ed] it has been a long time since I owned anything made by what I gather is the world's most valuable company. One reason, really an emotional rather than a logical one, is the irritating attitude of its followers, the people who go "whoop" at announcements of anything new even though it is exactly the same as something they already have, the people who always say their computer is an "Apple Mac", like there's loads of computers called "Mac" so they have to distinguish it with the prefix, the people who say how user friendly Apple products are (and keep quiet about the way every time Apple updates the operating systems it makes software that these people have previously paid good money for obsolete), and oh most of all the High Priest of fruit-nomenclature gadgetry, Stephen Fry. Sorry, I know he's a very very clever and witty man but "his smug, everything Apple does is so cool and by the way did I tell you that I got the latest whatever-it-is free (and before any of you plebs did) because I'm so wonderful" manner gets so far up my nose it comes out the back of my head and is off down the High Road into the distance.

So imagine my surprise and reaction to the much leaked news that the world's ponciest, let's charge twice as much as anyone might think and we'll get away with it because it is so reassuringly expensive, corporation is to issue a watch. A smart wristwatch. Never mind your iphone or ipod or iglass or whatever, they are all obsolete because now you have to put something on your wrist. And if you want to know the time do you have to talk to it and wait for a computer to say (hopefully in Dalek tones "It is ten after three and you are late, earthling" or must you jab away at a dinky little keypad in a manner reminiscent of the first generation of these products that Douglas Adams so memorably satirised in Hitchhikers  - " a planet whose ape-descended lifeforms are so amazingly primitive that they still think digital watches are a pretty neat idea."

My watch is a Casio. It tells me the time (and because it is digital, I really mean the time, not the approximation of a couple of hands pointing roughly at a dial), it has an alarm and a light. It cost about £26 and I have had it years and years.  No, it is not smart but if it breaks I don't care because I shall buy another at the same amazing reasonable cost and it works whether I have an internet connection or not and it does not have bloody iTunes. So when the queues start forming outside the Apple Stores you will not see me there. But you may get more vitriol later when we learn more about the iWatch (or is it the iTimepiece, the iChronometer or the iDontCareItsLotsMoreLovelyMazooma?) Because it is such a fun subject to write about, and in the immortal words of Lady Constance de Coverlet "For fun I'd do anything"

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