Thursday, April 20, 2006

iTunes Prices Stay, iPod Prices Drop?

What it do, everyone? Sorry, I just felt like saying that because I think it sounds funny. I finally saw some other apartments today in Far West, and I liked a unit at Juniper Springs better than a place I liked in North Campus, which costs $11 more a month for 100 less square feet. I'll probably go with Juniper, but we'll decide soon enough. I'm definitely staying at an Extended Stay hotel this summer though, which I knew nothing about until now so expect my impressions on that in a couple of months. You came here to read about real news though, like rumors that the iPod may actually drop in price. I think their margins have reached a sweet spot, and so it would only make sense for them to drive up sales with lower prices. Here's the crazy thing though: you're going to pay the same for those FairPlay songs on iTunes! I guess technically it's still a stalemate, but I still consider it the industry blinking first (it was bound to happen one one side, and Jobs is a pretty demanding kind of guy). They haven't inked any deals continuing the pricing per se, which means that they could hold their content over Jobs head and put pressure on him later, but they seem pretty discouraged that they haven't managed to scare him at all. I'm not really all that surprised. If I was Jobs I wouldn't budge either. What does he have to gain from higher prices, or lose from them pulling content? They know in the back of their heads that the iPod is what popularized digital music downloads (you know it's true, don't pretend you're cooler than everyone else), and if their songs can't play on iPods then people are more likely to pirate it rather than try some other service. It's still a situation on the edge though, because you have to wonder what would happen if they all agree at once to pull their content from iTunes in a boycott of sorts. I agree with what Jobs said about them being greedy, but I'm sure he wants to keep the prices so low because he knows the mind trick it plays on people to only have to pay 99 cents for a song.

Prices are changing in video games right now as well, and for the better. The PS2 will be dropping its price to $130, which is actually the same as a 1 GB iPod Shuffle (I think the former would be a better value, personally). Nothing yet about the Xbox, which is still $150, but there are rumors that both Xbox 360 packs will drop in price (by $100 for the premium, and $80 for the core) this October. It may sound kind of far-fetched, but I wouldn't be surprised if this is just the length to which they're willing to go to lock in an early victory against the PS3 based just on a steep price difference. We all know that there's a war brewing between HD-DVD and Blu-ray right now, and GameDaily claims that Toshiba has the edge since they've managed to get their product out first. I don't think it's much of a lead for them, and I think most nerds (myself included) are hoping that both formats fail because they care too much about annoying DRM. Microsoft goes to pretty good lengths to test some of their products on Macs, and an employee there has actually posted pictures of their ridiculously large Mac lab (including racks summing to 150 Mac Minis in on picture). I may actually pass out if I was in that lab. Have you ever stumbled upon a site in another language and wanted a quick translation? I have several times, and now there's a Firefox extension that takes advantage of Google Translator to do just that. Lastly, I think it's awesome that Miller has been developing beer cans that actually employ "cold can" technology that would allow you to quickly cool your can when activated (I guess this would mean opening the can). It's quite environmentally friendly, and would greatly reduce the need for ice chests with beer when on the beach or fishing or something.

Click to enlargeCinempire has dug up a few new pictures from the Da Vinci Code, and I'm almost positive that this clue was in the movie but I can't believe that I've forgotten what it meant. I just read the book a year ago! It looks like Angelina Jolie is willing to do a Tomb Raider 3 now despite saying that she was done with the series earlier. It makes you wonder just how much money they threw at her. Masswyrm over at AICN got to see United 93, and he's given a glowing review for the Paul Greengrass take on the 9/11 flight that didn't crash into the Towers. He made some good points about why it isn't too soon, and I now totally agree with him and look forward to seeing it. Someone else at AICN saw The Notorious Bettie Page, and seemed to really enjoy it. His review wasn't as positive, but it still sounds like a solid movie. The Cannes lineup has finally been announced, and I just have two words of exhilaration for you: Southland Tales. I'm excited to hear about what Richard Kelly has been working on behind closed doors since the Festival is in the middle of May (just in time for when school ends, actually). Fox is going to be attaching a seven minute preview for X3, which will also be at Cannes (strangely enough), with the series finale of That 70s Show on May 11. I actually don't doubt that it'll be very well put together and make people want to see it, but I know better, unfortunately (and so should many of you since I've posted script information before). Lastly, IGN has another clip from Silent Hill, and this one isn't as great as what we've seen in the past, but I don't care at this point and am gunning to see it tomorrow night, actually. So if my post is very late tomorrow, you'll know why.

Now for the Thursday Threesome:

Onesome- Hey, good lookin': Makeover time! What's the one thing about yourself you would change if you could? From your hair style to your nose to your weight, you name it ;)
I'm not really sure. I guess I'd want a tighter butt? I'm not so dissatisfied with how I look anymore since I got my contacts. Now it's just how I sound (the cluttering).

Twosome- whatcha got cookin'?: Do you like to cook? What's your favorite meal that you cook yourself? Care to share the recipe?
I do like to cook, but I don't know how to cook enough stuff since my mom spoils me and sends me so much food. I make a sausage dish that I really like, but the recipe isn't all that great so I won't share it. When I actually come up with or acquire some stellar recipes though, I'll be sure to share.

Threesome- How's about cookin' something up with me?: If you like to cook, do you like to share the kitchen/grill? If you share, do you direct the goings on, or just let the other person do their thing? Or do you prefer to solo it, subscribing to the "too many cooks spoil the broth," theory?
I don't really mind either way. As long as the other people involved know what they're doing, I have no problem working with them/being led by them. I'm kind of a novice, after all.

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