We Get What We Vote For

In a democratic election, everyone gets what they vote for. It’s such a beautiful concept, one which as South Africans, we should embrace; going back to the struggles that took place while some of us almost-born-frees, and the born-frees, never experienced.

Our 5th national democratic elections have surely been interesting for me, not because it’s my second national vote, but in that I am wiser than I was 5 years ago, that although I am not a politician, I am at least more clued up on some of what is happening in my country.

There are a number of things that I noticed in the run-up to, and the elections themselves. This is my account of them. I do disclaim that as this are my opinions, there will obviously be an element of anecdote, interpretations of circumstances at their face-value when that might not be the case, and opinions that may or may not be backed up by facts. If I do not explicitly state something; please do not deduce anything or label me as some category of a person, especially in a defamatory manner. We live in a democracy, we have rights as per the Bill of Rights on our beautiful Constitution, and I am responsibly using my rights to freedom of expression.

Now that the mandatory stuff is out of the way, on to the good stuff.

Childhood

There is no green-grass in a drought

Not a history I like revisiting at will, but as many South African children from ‘previously disadvantaged backgrounds’, I didn’t grow up without my fair share of suffering. It’s however not about competing on who’s seen more suffering, because it’s not a vanity contest.
For a major part of my childhood I lived without my mother due to her health conditions at the time. If I recall properly, I was around 12 when I first stayed with my neighbour at home, he was 14 at the time. His sister and himself were staying alone, because their mother was working ‘the kitchens’, elder siblings were also working. Fortunately his sister was much older and more responsible than the both of us. There were tough times when we didn’t have anything to eat for the day, how we survived is only by God’s grace [that is my belief, so if you are not of the same belief, you can substitute this with something else like a big-bang or an equivalent bang].

The following year I moved to go stay with my grandmother’s sister (great aunt?). It was tough, in their elderly pension-years, they were supporting 8 dependent mouths that needed feeding, from me to the youngest child, there were 6 of us, sleeping in the same room. Yet, with such love was their support administered, that the tough times that we often faced faded away easily. In my tough puberty years, I am glad that I had someone to teach me impartiality by treating everyone as if they are their children.

To go into the specifics, in a typical previous-gen African family; there are often many children, with a vast age difference. The older children would often have a ‘piece-job nyana’ or more formal employment at the mines etc. So we young ones relied on our grandparents, and grants from the working-class to help here and there.

Central to that support structure was our grandparents’ pensions, i.e. my great aunt’s husband (wait for it … great uncle), as he had worked his entire life until he took pension. His pension wasn’t much, but bearing purchasing power at the time, and other circumstances, we got by. Another grant system was our government’s social grant system. My great aunt was already receiving it, so it patched most of the holes.

When all I have is R500 a month to feed the whole family, the last thing I want to be uncertain is whether I’ll continue receiving that R500.

[As a sidenote, that’s how much the grant was back in my day, in 2014 I believe it’s about R1270]. My great uncle later went on the social grant when his annuity came to its lengthy end. Thank you ANC-led government for the support. Though the grass wasn’t green, we survived the drought.

Baby Boom, for a water buffalo

Now that I mentioned the social grant, there was an element of the grant that was intended for good, but resulted in an indirect social ill. The government introduced the child support social grant. It was much needed, we had a lot of children who needed some support, so the R100 (amount at the time, might be out by a few Ront) was a great addition to the R500 that pensioners received.

Statisticians can try prove/disprove this one, but on the ground, I remember the motivation for a lot of teenage pregnancies being to receive some money. Call it the ‘hustle of the day’. Our despondent sisters who weren’t finding employment were being tempted into reproduction having an element of security in receiving a grant of sorts.

To be clear, I’m not directly inferring that people started having kids to get the grant. I held that opinion, but I later grew out of it as it was too riddled with anecdote, due to isolated cases of people who proclaimed such intention. What I won’t disagree with was that the grant had the side-effect of not convincing people that child maintenance was no childs’ play.

An incident which most of us should be familiar with is when MEC Faith Mazibuko was quoted telling an unemployed mother to ‘close up’ her legs and stop having babies in 2009 or so [Evidence: http://www.citypress.co.za/news/mec-must-pay-telling-mother-close/]. By the way, probably slipped through election-fever, but the taxpayers have settled with the woman for an amount of R350’000 (the news article is from last week, at the time of writing).

In closing of this section, remember that in the coming 4 to 10 years, most of these children who were born in that era will be coming through our education system.

It’s Based on Outcomes

Educate a man

Nna ga ke je tlhapi, tlhapi ke noga, noga ya metsi, e ya lelesela, setlhare sa baloi. [Translated to an extent as: “I don’t eat fish, it’s a water snake, witches’ medicine/muti”]. It comes from an old Tswana song, I just remembered it when I was about to type “Educate a man, feed him for life”, with the obvious reference to fish.

I have written about our education system about 3 years back, and my views are still similar, so here is what I wrote: my opinion on our education system.

Despite the matric pass-rate, I am convinced that our education system is failing us as a country. To add some weight to my claim, I have seen it first-hand at the times when I tutored my class at high school, and when I tutored in varsity. I attribute two problems to this:

  1. Weakening standards. We all saw OBE and its earlier implementation as disastrous
  2. The disincentive to think. We generally are a young generation that doesn’t “think” in the sense that we don’t seem to be applying our minds at school.

Cue the pitchforks, Maths Literacy, you are killing us.

Education costs sweat and blood

Our parents didn’t have the opportunities that we have in getting educated, my mother had to leave school after Std 8, so she could go work and help the family out. I think similar with her two sisters. She wished for education so badly that there’s a time when she went back to school, but it was just at the period when she fell ill, so she never completed her night school.

One of the many things I praise her for is that she saw the value of education, and she demonstrated it by giving me the best she could in that department, while she could. There are 2 schools of thought;

  • those that believe that ‘geniuses’ are born, and;
  • those that believe that ‘geniuses’ are made.

I currently fall in the latter. I learnt to read fluently in 2 languages before I could figure the writing thing properly. In my last 2 years of pre-school, I had an after-creche teacher who used to smack the lights into me, along with her nephew. She was a middle-school teacher, entrusted with the great task of being a ring-bearer, carrying the ring of illiteracy to Mount Doom [yes, I just Lord of the RInged this one]. By the time I went to sub A (the current Grade 1), I was breezing through material like a prodigy.

Though I went to public schools all my life (except for a dodge 2 year stint at some ‘private school’), I wouldn’t really have known better on what the difference with a private school was. At least until i got to middle school and high school.
Through mother’s sweat and blood, and the stripes that I bore for having laziness beaten out of me, I loved education throughout school, and survived in tough places where the system wasn’t strong.

Kudos to the teachers that believed in me. In my one-year stint in Rustenburg, as my punishment, I think I cleaned our classroom more than anyone else that year. I did it with a smile as I knew that my class teacher was punishing me out of love.

Also, thank you to the ANC-led government for pushing the policy of free education. In grade 12, at the height of financial suffering, my school fees were only R150 that year.

It’s stealing if we don’t contribute back

Personal and family struggles will always exist, and that’s not a good excuse to not contribute back to society. As appreciation for what my government has done, I hope to contribute more back to our system from this year onwards. Watch this space?

Racial Discontent

This is a tough one, so remember that I’m writing as a young-blood who didn’t live through the Apartheid era.

Grayscale TV Tendencies

Remember the days when we had grayscale TVs? At that time, a ‘black’ person was black, and a ‘white’ person was white. No yellow bones, just grey bones.

We haven’t forgotten those days I believe. In the last weekend of the election campaigning, Blade Nzimande was at Soccer City in front of the masses, accusing the opposition party of being a ‘white party’ blah blah (me paraphrasing). At the same time, the attribution of the ruling party to the concept that it’s a ‘black’ party in 2014 is also sad.
I’m not disregarding the demographics of our country, but I’m saying that by saying such things during electioneering, we run the risk of keeping the grayscale mentality alive.

This is a topic which I will acknowledge the lack of qualification to dwell on, so i’ll briefly move on.

Sunshine Policies

The EFF is fighting for economic freedom in this lifetime. I think we were headed in that direction with policy, but its implementation is where it failed. I’m referring to Affirmative Action, BEE and the tender systems. Much has been said, but I’ll focus on some observations of mine.

We have passed through the phase when there was extreme window-dressing in the hope of meeting certain quotas and credentials. That phase obviously did a lot of harm.
We are currently going through its aftermath, which is the period where business doubts black people’s ability to deliver. This is isolated, and my view here is based on fireside chats with friends, I don’t believe to have experienced what I am about to talk about, so no witch-hunts please.

‘Young black professionals’ are in the phase where they get into the workplace, and there are some minorities of people who still have grayscale tendencies of presuming that just because you are ‘black’, you had inferior education, and you might not deliver as your other counterparts. It’s a strong and bold accusation to make, so I’ll make sure I don’t drop the baby here.

The Rebuttal

This is what is called a rebuttable presumption, which is the assumption that something is true until its proven otherwise. (I won’t forget my Honours Accounting lecturer putting me on the spot asking me such deep English, he was out to get me lol).
Such presumptions might be racially motivated now, but the danger that we face is that they continue to exist because of the current throughput of our education system.

I tutored 1st years in varsity, and I could clearly see the difference in the quality of thinking from that era. That era, and the subsequent years, is the one that is joining the workplace now. It’s not isolated to a specific race, but we as people who have been in the system for a few years, are seeing the clear drop in quality of thinking in the current crop of graduates.

Obviously to get where you have was because you proved yourself competent by passing exams,,but it is; the problem-solving ability, the inarguable demonstration of clear well-thought reasoning, that we assess you on. For me, such element is missing. If things continue ceteris paribus, as a country, we’re in trouble.

There is grave danger in that as the OBE generation (gross generalisation on my part), you will fail to rebut the presumption as we have managed to.

Our government is making strides where it can, there are some blunders like the Limpopo textbook isolated cases, but we as people educated by our system, it is our responsibility to help our government out. It is for the good of our future labour force. Else we will be supporting youth unemployment subsidies with our salaries to come nice!

Kudos to all those who are dedicating their time to contributing back to the system. I can’t let the left hand know what the right hand is doing, so I won’t compete with mentioning what ad where I contribute.

Stupid Voters and Clever People

This is a very sensitive issue, I won’t talk much about it, except that:

No South African has the right to call another South African ‘stupid’ or the equivalent for voting for the ANC. There is a clear history, there is a lot of uncertainty on what would happen if opposing parties win the elections. There are people who have the valid fear that they will lose their grants if the ANC is voted out, etc.

As a taxpayer who’s been paying probably north of R5’000 a month in taxes, it is frustrating for me to hear of all the waste of my money taking place. There is a lot of good that my money goes to, and there is a growing element of an unhealthy lack of accountability eating into our state coffers.
I believe my vote reflects my action based on how I feel about my money. Someone else’s vote might be an extension of the joy they feel for our liberation, others for the grant they receive, you get the story. That however, doesn’t give me the right to call someone names because they don’t see what I see. I too don’t see what they see.

As taxpayers funding our free education, our social grants system, subsidising business learnerships, let’s not forget that at the end of the stick is someone living the story that I told. They are not ‘stupid’ for voting for what they don’t want. For me the biggest confusion has been people saying they are unhappy with the leadership, but they will still vote for their respective party. It’s something I resigned to acknowledging to be human nature. A mother sticks to her child even in wrongdoing.

Our responsibility as South Africans is to keep fighting for those who do wrong to be brought to justice. The ruling party should acknowledge in the coming inaugurations, that it should clean up its act. ‘Clever people’ are likely to be more disgruntled, the effects of certain short-term decisions will catch up to us. Though some of us oppose e-tolls on our highways, we pay for them from our pockets, and in the increased cost of goods that are transported through those roads.

“In South Africa we are in an unique position in that we pay twice for the same thing” – Moeletsi Mbeki, public speech at Wits (circa 2011)

When we are careless of our table manners, the dogs on the ground get the pieces of food that we keep dropping. This is just an analogy, I’m not calling anyone a dog.

Accountability

The Opposition

Kudos again to the EFF, we look forward to the ‘Commander in Chief’ of the EFF joining Parliament. Well done DA, we will forever wonder whether your strategy of attacking ‘Zuma’ worked, but you too have done well. To those parties that lost out, losing is tough, take heart and show character.

As South Africans who always say that the opposition has nothing to show, remember that the perceived entertainment taking place in Parliament is the execution of accountability, which is enacted by our laws, and enforced by the opposition. In simple English:

The opposition’s role is not to govern, but to make sure that the government does its job transparently.

So let’s please think about this and stop saying that our opposition is useless. The media succeeds often out of the questions that the opposition raise.

The Media

I have seen many instances of shoddy journalism and direct misinterpretation. Please continue raising the standard of excellence whilst State Information is not yet protected.

Our Government

5 more years, likely of many more to come. Honourable members of government, please start on a clean slate and write a good story for the country, one which will make us your employers deem you worthy of Parliamentary busts next to that of tata Madiba in the coming decades.

The Public Protector, and other Chapter 9 Institutions

Ausi Thuli, may I please kindly have your autograph before your 7-year non-renewable term is over.

I have heard great stories of the Auditor-General, and to the IEC, please do consider electronic voting, I really hope that you will be able to resolve grievances and allegations of dumped votes and so on.

Voters

Let us stop with unfounded conspiracies, thinking that politics are a gameshow or Mickey Mouse cartoons. It is our lives that are affected. Let us take interest in our country, and as hard and blind-sighted as my words are, dwelling on the past is nonconstructive. Let us assess our current-day leaders on their current-day achievements and shortcomings.

Conclusion

In a democracy, people get what they voted for. I just hope that what we voted for as a collective is 5 years of a good story to tell our children and the world. Since we’ve casted our votes, let us not stop there, but continue taking an interest in the well-being of our nation. Let us please lose the grayscale mentality.

Thanks for reading, I’d appreciate healthy comments, corrections and other views.

In the Land of Opinions

In the land of opinions, the men with facts are kings.

In the land of opinions, it is the loudest voice that wins.

It’s been a while since I engaged in senseless arguments with someone. I remember back in the days when we’d have silly arguments like fanboys, about Android vs. Apple vs. whatever. I should be sad for those wasted hours of my life.

I think we often disregard the importance of biting one’s tongue in the midst of pop-culture arguments, fruitless discourse as the Puritans of old would call them. The best way to prove your point is by demonstrating it, but if you want to win an argument in sheer style, you have to go a few extra steps and demonstrate it in style. That begs of us to do what we do to the best of our abilities.

There will always be detractors, those people who seem to always disagree out of blinding pride and envy; those who won’t agree with you even if it is for their own good to. The way of handling such – as I have learnt – is by not entertaining their views. Not entertaining one’s views, however, is not a license to ignore them. It is the realisation of when to walk away from a discussion.
I have lost many an argument in the past, and I will continue to lose more of them. I’m just glad that in most of those losses, I stepped back and realised that winning was wasting my time, and I walked away.

The beauty of modern technology is that if one manages it well, it always comes back as a record proving or disproving one. Similar to how Davy Jones told Bootstrap Bill that he was a liar, transcripts are always there to disprove one’s opinion at a later time.

It is the battles that win the war, but not every win of a battle contributes to the success of the war.

The one thing I wish we all learnt was discerning when something is merely an unsubstantiated argument, so that we could go back to our caves and engage in some research. With elections upon us, it seems that we’re all now expert politicians, and I just got insulted by some stranger for having an opinion which he disagrees with. What a waste of my evening 🙁

 

Why I’m Investing in SSL

A few weeks ago I (‘we’) silently added SSL to rwt-to (http://rwt.to). The reason is quite simple, “it ain’t safe no more”. When I went shopping for a bare-metal server I looked at performance, price and regulations, and didn’t take much into considering latency or where most users of my current/future projects are located. Even with that said, the US seemed a good option, as I got a very ‘powerful’ server for the same price I’d pay locally.

Now the biggest problem with the server’s location is that it’s in the US, in fact, even all the VPServers that I use are in the US. This was always not a problem in the past, but due to the data hose of NSA revelations that keep pouring in, I get concerned by the day.

NSA and Google

I use Google services, the NSA have seen all my data one way or the other, and in practicality I don’t have a problem with that. Google gives me services for free, in exchange for my information so they can sell me ads. I’m happy with the model, it works out well for me. In principle, however, I am very concerned with the fact that government agenc[ies] have warrantless access to my data. Not just my data as a consumer, but also data as a service provider.

The recent revelation that the NSA had access to Google’s dark fiber, which was unencrypted petabytes of our information, is one of those things that have tipped the scales for me. I’ve never had to think about it, but now that I have thought about it; I didn’t expect Google to encrypt data between their data centers, as long as they theoretically were the only ones with access to their network. Simply, this is the same as operating on a VPN. The VPN security layer on its own should suffice as security that you’re on your own network. This, coupled with the presumption that Google wouldn’t share a leased connection, is the basis for my expectation.

I didn’t expect Google to encrypt data between their data centers

Realistically though, encrypting internal data is likely to be a costly exercise, both computationally and from an efficiency perspective. As +Mike Hearn from Google recently put it (https://plus.google.com/+MikeHearn/posts/LW1DXJ2BK8k):

“… the entire thing requires a large and complex key distribution and management infrastructure (fortunately already present). Also lots of different protocols flow over our wires, each one of which has to be handled. …”

Remember that, unless the model’s changed, Google uses distributed commodity servers, which might not always be the latest and greatest Intel chips with SSX 4.3 or whatever instruction sets make our blood rush with excitement these days. So end-to-end encryption on its own would really be costly.

My SSL Efforts

With the above said, now knowing that the NSA has had access to organisation[s]‘ dark fiber, I am overly concerned for the little server that I own, and the VPServers too. As mentioned, a few weeks back I added SSL on the public-facing ports on my little server. The main logic from that was because that in a few months I’ll be hosting probably a number of services that are consumed by the public.
I (‘we’) find it reasonable for anyone using whatever service I’ll have running at the time to have an expectation of security about inputting or storing their data on my (‘our’) services.

I’m about to go on a process of either killing the VPServers that I own or moving them to a small dedicated server, retiring some random experiments of mine, and perhaps also killing my blog and mail server. That’s something to think of over a glass of juice. Securing all of that with SSL (where necessary) will be expensive, unless I sign all the keys myself where possible.

The main thing that remains a concern for me is that as and when my services expand, and the need for additional servers/shards arises, I’ll have the same problem (albeit at a micro level) as the one that Google faced, being that; Do I (‘we’) need to protect internal traffic between downstream and upstream servers?

To give some context, I run a Node.js app on a single-instance cluster. Now, Node.js isn’t the most efficient of servers out there when it comes to handling TLS/SSL encryption and decryption (I believe Ben Noordhuis has made this admission himself). So as most people do, I use nginX to handle the crypting. The problem with this is that once a request is validated by nginX, internal traffic is decrypted (i.e. the Node.js cluster doesn’t use SSL) it flows around unencrypted. So, with more shards potentially located in other DCs (say, around the world, or maybe locally in SA), it means that the traffic that actually matters (the exchange between the database[s] and Node.js) is in full view of hackers and certain authorities.

Well, Nobody Cares

The reality is that for now, nobody cares. I don’t expect myself to build a sensitive system which will require important user information. However, as someone who has had an interest in computer security, and is aspiring to study in the field, it matters that I learn how to deal with such architectural problems at an early stage. This means that over time I’ll learn how distribution of encryption keys works, and other interesting concepts.

What Mike Hearn posted was quite insightful for a curious mind like mine, and is surely encouragement for me to continue with SSL for TCP protection. Of course the problem is that getting keys signed by a public authority can be expensive, and that isn’t a guarantee of security if the NSA wants in (eg. Lavabit’s certificate was revoked over a month ago).

I’ve had some time to look at PGP and things like PPTP/IPSec, and without promoting paranoia, I am going to be working more towards keeping my data safe, through the wire and beyond. I’ve learnt that it’s better to be safe than sorry when it comes to data security.

iOS Device Pricing and Silliness

Just finished streaming the Apple update event now. I am impressed with their Mac line as usual, but I just couldn’t resist talking about a few things that I saw.

At some point I went: jackie-chan-what

DAT Price Apple

So, the iPad Mini is getting ‘Retina’ display as all of us expected, and its USD price is going up to $399, with the previous generation iPad dropping to $299. One might concede that Apple isn’t playing competition from a price-point, but the old iPad Mini is now $70 more expensive than a 7.0 inch Google Nexus 7 (which has the same pixel density as the new Retina Mini, and a beautiful display as people say).

I think it’s insane to keep the iPad Mini at such an insane price

I’m hopefully getting my hands on the Nexus 7 in a few months or maybe weeks. 🙂

Mavericks is free, yay!

Not that I own a Mac, but I have been thinking about getting one when I head off to the Americas. I don’t mind the $30 or whatever they charge for upgrades, Microsoft took my money when Windows 8 launched (although I managed to score Pro with Media Center for R125, about $15 at the time).

Anyways, the thing I wanna say is that instead of Apple gracefully acknowledging that they’re taking the direction that Microsoft has recently taken with Windows 8.1, by making it free to Windows 8 users, they go and throw a dirty one at them by showing a retail box of Windows 8 at $200, and claim that they’re free while the competition charges for upgrades.

They couldn’t really compare to the 8.1 that was released 5 days ago, but had to take a stab at something that was released 369 days ago.

Cool story on the free upgrade, bro!

iPad catered apps, not stretched out phone apps

Don’t feed the trolls!

iPad has always had an advantage, Android is still catching up, Windows is … Oh, where was I? I’ll give them a point on the number of “iPad designed apps”, at least until Google announces their figures this coming Thursday.

The biggest problem with this statement, however, is that it’s a bit more on the side of bull. Anyone who is aware of Android design guidelines would know that the same apk that works on phones can also “scale up” (read as “be displayed differently using fragments”) and not “stretch out”. I understand that it’s a major talking point for a developer to say that they’ve got a tablet specific app, but that’s overrated on Android.

What we might forget in the light of such claims by Apple is that a lot of developers release two separate apps, for iPhone and iPad, and some end up charging twice for the same app.

I know that there’s what Apple calls “universal apps”, but that’s standard on Android. Developers even have the flexibility of managing multiple versions of their apps under the same listing. No confusion.

The Great

I’ve been looking around, and not seeing any “fantastic” WIndows laptop that I can buy next year, I like the Mac Pros, and I might get me one if I convince myself to save up hard enough. This is where Apple really shine.

PS: don’t go look at the share price and say that “Wall Streets was unimpressed with Apple”, today is a choppy day on the markets, well  at least in the US.

Forking a Repo to my Dongle

So some character was offended by two guys at a tech conference, and instead of telling them that their ‘offensive penis jokes’ are offensive penis jokes, she went on the interweb and ruined their names and probably rest of careers. The Verge has covered the story, which is what I first read before I went digging around to get more info on what happened.

The story is covered everywhere, and my side of it is that this character should have rather approached the guys. the TL;DR version of it is that this Andria Richards character felt offended by two guys who were talking about forking a repo (which means: making a copy of someone’s project in order to use/contribute to) and references to a “big dongle” (you know, USB dongle, Bluetooth dongle … ). She then tweeted about it, and got the guys kicked out of the conference. Later both guys were fired.

 this Adria (had spelt her as Andria, apologies) Richards character felt offended by two guys who were talking about forking a repo

It’s a sad thing because she’s prolly taken back the whole “women in programming” bit backwards, as is evident from some of the hate mail spreading around the net and IRC. The anonymously infamous Anonymous even took a stand against SendGrid, Andria’s employer, who later fired her citing the DDoS as a reason.

I find some sense of humour cos the interwebs bring justice, even when you decide to use your power and ruin guys’ lives over something that could have been handled in a more civil manner.

A Case Against the ‘www’ [Updated 09 Dec 2012]

I must admit that ever since I learnt about hosting and the Internet, I have never understood one thing:

Why some websites work with the ‘www’ prefix, while some do not.

When I started using Apache, I learnt that there is essentially no difference between having the prefix or not. That was until I played around with Windows Servers. I noticed that it was a trend for most hosts to enable the redirect of www, eliminating the difference between www.nevi.me and nevi.me. One thing I noticed though was that a lot of websites at the time (this was 5 years back) still required the prefix. Some of these still do, and even more still pop up once in a while violating this (let’s call it a) principle.

Principle: a user should be able to access an URL with or without the ‘www’ prefix, except where the address is a custom sub-domain. Continue reading “A Case Against the ‘www’ [Updated 09 Dec 2012]”

Boycotting TechCrunch.com

I know I’m a nobody in a small town from some country where people think we have lions as pets, that doesn’t matter.
It became a habit to get home and open techcrunch.com, read up about all the start-ups and what they are doing to try change the way we do things.

The site is useful, but there’s one huge problem I have about them; they are ‘iSheep’. Their journalism and editorial is becoming an insult to people’s intelligence.
It’s okay for individual authors to have certain preferences, but I think they take it too far when they bash everything that stands on Apple’s way.
My observation’s that as Google and other companies have been spending more on Research and Development (evidenced by their financials), Apple hasn’t been upping their spend enough. Though journalists tend to say that Apple has $100 billion ‘in the bank’, it technically does not. It has about a quarter of that amount (the rest is long-term investments, even if they are marketable securities, they are not ‘cash’).

So one would naturally expect Apple to trail behind in ‘innovation’. Anyways, now there’s this TechCrunch site that just keeps promoting Apple, to a terrible extent where everything else (Google, Nokia, Microsoft, RIM) are being bashed almost from every corner.

I don’t wanna write an essay, but this here posted today is what made me just stop going to TechCrunch:

There’s also a chance that Google will announce a new range of Nexus 7 tablets, perhaps with a model costing as low as $100 and another with 64GB of storage.

The event happens the Monday after Apple’s iPad mini event and the launch of Windows 8 and the Microsoft Surface. Intentional timing? You bet. With every announcement, Google is pushing its own branded hardware more than ever before.

No matter what’s announced, we’ll be there in force, ready to liveblog the action no matter how boring or dull it might be. [Emphasis is mine]

So this is the end of TechCrunch for me 🙂 I hope that in future AOL gets decent journalists to write stories, not the elementary rubbish that’s sometimes written.