Posts tagged Apple
First day back to tech and the 6th grade tackled what turns out to be a difficult question: Are Google and Apple friends?
Students agreed that Apple is a computing company and Google is an advertising company. They don’t compete for hardware (iPhone, computers, iPod, etc) but they DO fight for software users (Apple sells software, Google gives it away).
Students pointed out that Google’s web browser (Chrome) only works on PC, not on Apple computers. This makes us think that Apple and Google will work together to steal users from Microsoft’s Internet Explorer.
However, on January 5th, Google released a piece of software called Picasa for Mac, a direct competitor to iPhoto (the most popular free Mac photo organization/editing software). What does this mean? Is Google attacking Apple?
The 6th grade thinks that this will be a tough fight for Google. Apple computers come with iPhoto already installed, and for people that already use iPhoto, there isn’t a lot of reason to switch.
Last week Apple launched a new laptop, the MacBook Air. This week in tech, the 6th grade split up into 3 groups and each team compared this new ultra-thin laptop to others on the market.
- Macbook Air
- OS Leopard
- 2GB Ram
- up to 80GB storage
The competitors were:
- The OLPC XO laptop
- Linux OS
- 512MB Ram
- 2GB storage
- Apple’s standard MacBook
- OS Leopard
- 1GB Ram
- up to 160GB storage
- Alienware’s Area-51 m9750
- Windows XP or Vista
- starts at $1699
- up to 4GB Ram
- up to 640GB storage
Students came up with some interesting comparisons – looking at price, size, features (webcams, peripheral ports, expansion capabilities, graphic cards, etc). They also made some surprising decisions when weighing all of the options. Ask your 6th grader for their opinion.
Today we focused on Tech in the News. The two biggest stories of the last week are:
Microsoft buys stake in Facebook for $240 million dollars. We used this topic to learn about social networking services, how they rely on large adoption to be successful and how they leverage their customer base to create revenue from advertising.
Apple releases new operating system. From this article, we defined the term “operating system” as software that has a set of instructions that tells a computer’s hardware how to talk to each other and tells other software how to talk to the computer. We talked about Apple’s marketing, how they focus on the uses of their products (not necessarily just the hardware specifications) and how they work to generate “coolness”. We watched clips from a 20 minutes introductory video, produced by Apple, and discussed whether the new features were revolutionary, evolutionary, or just good-looking.
Students in one class had enough time to actually play with Leopard and tested Spaces, explored Safari 3 and looked at the new finder, dock and Coverflow features.