They’re Still Selling It!

Rather than asking how Apple can keep selling the relatively ancient iPad 2 at just 20% less than its original price, maybe we should be asking why all tablets aren’t expected to be fully useful for over three years after their launch.

-Marco Arment, Younger Than The iPad 2”

I was honestly surprise that Apple didn’t update the iPad 2 in some other way in the attempt to keep it relevant. The original iPad Mini is now a year old but it has a lightning port, whereas the iPad 2 is still rocking the 30-port connector, much like the iPhone 4S. I agree with Marco that we should be asking why more tablets don’t last as long as the iPad 2. Of course, the Apple that I was hoping to see—as were many others I am sure—was the one that left old things behind to embrace the future: retina displays, lightning adapters, flash storage. Instead, we saw an Apple who is still selling a version of the non-retina, spinning hard disk MacBook Pro and still selling iOS devices that carry an old standard.

What I have found most interesting about the press event commentary, however, has been the idea that Apple focused too much on products that may not matter in the not-too-distant future, i.e. Apple spent a lot of or too much time on the Mac, whereas the iPads are more important in the future of computing. Think of it this way, the Mac Pro was discussed on stage and people who desire the Mac Pro are complaining that Apple did not give enough stage time to the future in which the iPad is the only computer one will ever need. Yet, if Apple had not discussed the Mac Pro, those same individuals would have complained that their segment was no longer important to Apple’s future goals.

I, for one, saw a vivid glimpse into the fact that no matter what Apple device you buy, you can be successful. This is only mirrored by the iPad Air reviews that I have read; they all seem to point to the fact that the Air could realistically be someone’s only computer, not just a companion device. In terms of raw power, the iPad Air is faster than a 2010 MacBook Air when comparing benchmark scores. This is no small feat, but it doesn’t mean that the 2010 MacBook Air should be considered obsolete nor does it mean that Apple can’t continue to support the segment that still desires the Mac.

In short, even I am surprised that Apple is still selling certain hardware devices, but I will choose to be happy with what I have because Apple has yet again shown that they will continue to support their customer base, which is more than can be said for a lot of tech companies these days.


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The Challenges of 2020

TL;DR: Follow this link.

One of the craziest things about Christianity during the protests of the last few weeks is the fact that there are churches out there not discussing the issues honestly, not taking the time to have the hard conversations, not devoting their Sunday services to betterment of the world and people around them. If you’re church isn’t talking about racism right now, if they don’t mention that black lives matter, instead focusing on platitudes that equate to the all lives matter” sentiment, it is time to start looking for a new church.

My wife and I meet with my home” church virtually via Zoom since the pandemic is still a thing. Kimball Avenue United Church of Christ & La Iglesia Episcopal de Nuestra Señora de las Américas (KANSA, together) combined in a collaborative way to create a single denomination focused on the needs of their community. They follow Christ together toward the vision of love, reconciliation, peace and justice. The justice looks like the demolition and rehabilitation of an old church building and its grounds into a community garden and labyrinth open to all who seek peace through contemplation.

I give this elevator speech to mention that COVID has not been kind to faith communities in general. Budgets have been slashed, funding and grants have been cut, and congregations in need are also working to serve those in need, who are less likely to be able to financially support their church in these times. KANSA in one of the good ones. They speak truth, they have the difficult conversations, they preach in a loud voice every Sunday that black lives matter, that racism has no place in the church, that the LGBTQ community deserves respect and support, and that Jesus was a social justice warrior, who fought for the least of these no matter who they were, where they were from, what they looked like.

In fact, Jesus was most harsh to those who had the means to help and decided not to answer the call.

These systems of oppression we are protesting have been around a long time; they have screwed up a lot of lives, they have been the reason for revolution and the downfall of entire civilizations, they don’t work. We need to find a better way to live by supporting each other. And support has to come in systemic, social, financial, and political ways, both national and local.

I am not local to KANSA anymore, but I support their mission, the way that mission manifests in the world, and the simple fact that they follow Jesus no matter how ostracizing that position can be at times. Which brings me to the point:

Thanks to a $10,000 matching gift’ from an anonymous donor, the challenge has become an opportunity. Over the next two months, we plan to raise at least $10,000 to meet the challenge. Through August 31, 2020, every donation we receive toward our 2020 Challenge” no matter how small or how large will be doubled by the matching gift.

KANSA is hurting financially and needs support, they do good work and are unabashedly progressive in their approach to our world. Donate now and see your contribution matched to keep one of the good ones fighting the good fight.

Thank you for your consideration.