Weekend bitchmeme: the three people Steve Jobs should fire (can someone else exploit these?)

It’s a weekend, and that means it’s time for a bitchmeme.

It’s not often that I call for someone to be fired, but, well, when it comes to Apple I have been giving that company more than its fair share of cash lately and there are some things that it’s done that totally piss me off. Here’s three. If I was Steve Jobs I would be ashamed and would make these three people pay:

Apple's worst design decision of past five years. New iMac and Cinema displays don't line up!

1. Whoever designed the new 27-inch iMac and the new 27-inch Cinema display should be fired. Why? They don’t line up! Is it too much to ask that two monitors from the same company should line up perfectly when placed on a desk? Keep in mind these are both brand new products, both purchased in the past week.

2. Whoever designed the new Airplay on iPads should be fired. Before we get into why, first let’s cover what Airplay does since so few of you use it. If you are using, say, the TED app on your iPad and you say to yourself “gee, I’d like to watch this video on my big screen” you can use Airplay to do exactly that (if you have an Apple TV). This is the coolest new feature introduced to my world this year. By far. So you think I’d be totally praising the person who did it, right? No way. This is Apple and if something isn’t done perfectly heads must roll. So, what’s wrong? Well, easy. If you use the TED app and push airplay it indeed starts playing on your big screen. One MAJOR F***ED UP PROBLEM: you can’t minimize the TED app. You can’t even watch a different video. This isn’t a problem with the TED app either, it’s a problem with Airplay (same thing is wrong with other apps that use Airplay like Squrrl or ShowYou).

3. Whoever decided that the new Final Cut Pro wouldn’t have multi-camera support should be fired. Listen, anyone who does pro videos uses multiple cameras. We do over at http://building43.com. Whoever decided that Final Cut Pro could ship without multiple camera support decided to ship an incomplete product (and my producer says it’s not the only feature missing from it). Why didn’t you just call this iMoviePlus or something instead of pissing all over the Final Cut Pro brand and users?

Anyway, it’s so rarely that Apple just does things badly, but there’s three cases where heads must roll. At least if Steve Jobs wants to send a message to the others left at Apple that they better not ship crap on his watch.

What do you say Steve?

UPDATE: I’m wondering if someone else can exploit these mistakes. Certainly Android could exploit the Airplay problem, if it had a clue. But the monitor problem? I wonder if HP or Dell had a clue about how to exploit these problems? As for Final Cut Pro, my producer, Rocky Barbanica, is already switching to other editing products. He’s partial to Adobe Premier so far, so maybe Adobe or Avid will get a ton of business because Apple just signaled to pros that it doesn’t care about them anymore.

UPDATE #2: writing this article has caused a LOT of pushback. Here’s some samples:

Neven Mrgan Tweeted: Hey @Scobleizer, that post about employees Apple should fire is idiotic, mean, and ignorant. Shame on you.
AgentKyle Tweeted: Wow. @scobleizer just posted the most asshole article I’ve seen in a long time.
Chronic tweeted: one person Rackspace should fire: @Scobleizer

I’ll keep updating with more updates.

About Robert Scoble

As Startup Liaison for Rackspace, the Open Cloud Computing Company, I travel the world with Rocky Barbanica looking for what's happening on the bleeding edge of technology and report that here.

162 thoughts on “Weekend bitchmeme: the three people Steve Jobs should fire (can someone else exploit these?)

  1. Very strange move with Final Cut Pro. An editor I talked to a few weeks ago (I live in LA) said the same things, it’s just not usable for professional editing anymore in favor of ameteurs and hobbyists. Not sure the strategy other than they must feel pro tools aren’t as profitable between price & feature introduction. I’m not a Mac user, just an iPad user, but I would look at other Pro rated tools on Mac and see if this is a signal.

  2. The iMac monitor thing is criminal. Even a mm would drive me mad. I’m getting more and more fed up with Apple stuff. I’m thinking of trading my MBP in for a Win 7 laptop. Already ditched the iPhone for an Android handset and haven’t looked back.

    I do miss the games on iphone though.

  3. As other commenters say, the TED app is at fault here. I use Airplay quite frequently and can multitask with video on the TV and other media on the iPad. What bothers me about that is that it stays on AirPlay for the next video. Watching a movie on AirPlay, pause it and leave the roon, load another video and now you just re-queued the TV to play something else. But, is that better than hitting the button every time?
    And the monitors- I agree completely. It’s the ABSENCE of design “flaws” like this that we pay top dollar to Apple for their products.
    Keep speaking your mind. People are listening ;)

  4. Pardon me if this has already be mentioned.

    Another person to be added to the list.  The dummy who determined that when transferring a backup from one iPhone to another that iTunes would refuse if the recipient phone had an older version of iOS than the donor.  I just switched from ATT iPhone 4.3.x to Verizon 4.2.x and it was a MAJOR pain instead of the easy flip I had expected.  Granted there may be some items or settings that can’t be moved but 95% of it should have been no problem. Hey Apple! I’m buying a second iPhone from you.  Don’t make it hard to spend my money.  I will be holding off on my wife’s switch from ATT to Verizon until this is fixed or Verizon versions catch up to ATT.

  5. Instead of wanting them to get fired, why not just buy another product? oh, that’s right, because you are a mindless sheep who insists on iProducts as status symbols. Lammmmmmmmmme.

  6. Instead of wanting them to get fired, why not just buy another product? oh, that’s right, because you are a mindless sheep who insists on iProducts as status symbols. Lammmmmmmmmme.

  7. People disagree with the comments based on the harsh sentence. I think most will agree that Apple made mistakes here and should fix it. Fixing three people won’t fix it. In the end checks and balances in the structure of the company should have prevented Apple from making the mistake

  8. How’s the saying go? Something like… “one can slow cook a frog if he puts the frog in cooler water to begin with, but if the water is hot to begin with, the frog will immediately jump out.”

    Me: “…and Steve, we’re being slow cooked right now (by fb and twitter), but I’m counting on you to do things correct and not slow or fast cook us, okay :) Thanks Steve.”

  9. I’m hoping that Steve Jobs will think about the ‘User’ more (which i’m sure he will) than Twitter and Facebook have (i.e., e.g., with their attempted reach beyond their respective domains – you know, buttons…’Follow,’ ‘Share,’ ‘Link,’ … ). I’d say something like “Steve, we as users want to be more involved in the relationships initial formings; as domains come together to form larger, loosely coupled cohesive entities (domains) interacting.” … Twitter and Facebook are going into IOS, right…

  10. I made a mistake in my last reply. After looking closer, @ckj from @disqus did reply to my tweet for help on the bunching up of posts herein their product…

  11. So far, I still haven’t heard from #disqus within twitter where i msg’d them… They seem to be very active there, but still no msg. Although this guy msg’d me with what i think is a bad solution – he said that “one could limit the sub msg depth or no.of sub msgs within a post.” It gets to be not such a good idea when one gets as many comments as this blog has gotten…

  12. As and editor myself who cuts 50/50 Avid and FCP, if you’re switching I’d suggest Avid Media Composer. They have a very good multicam edit system that’s similar to nature to fcp (better in my opinion). I’ve cut multicam TV shows and music videos on both and I prefer Avid.

    That said… I know you shoot a lot of stuff on the 5D and h264 which Premiere actually handles very well because of the importing. However, you’re not going to get great multicam performance out of that — not the least because decoding multiple h264 streams is pretty heavy work. Premiere is currently the best for DSLR footage though because Adobe worked with Canon to figure out the best way to decode the Canon shot footage.

    On Avid, it’s better all rounder though, and what most people use in movies and TV shows I know. The interface can sometimes look a little scarier to beginners because originally the interface was more keyboard driven (originally only built for professional environments with expensive hardware). Now it’s software, and they’ve redesigned it a bit, there’s really not much difference in the interface from FCP, when you get used to it. It is very fast and easy once you’re used to the change – and doesn’t take up as much memory or processing power.I don’t know if you’ve seen but FCPX has been a massive disaster among professional editors… Even Conan O’Brien made a parody video about how bad it is.

  13. Don’t know if it’s been mentioned (comments tl;dr) but your gripe with the TED app is an app problem, not an Airplay one. AirVideo (http://www.inmethod.com/air-video/) plays video over Airplay and can be run in the background so you can do other things. Perhaps the authors of those apps don’t want you to background their apps. 

  14. Well, you don’t fire people for not thinking of every possible use, scenario or set up. You’d really have us believe that tossing out talent because of simple mistakes is cause for job termination? If so, shall I recommend that your company’s clients begin reviewing your work?

    1. Steve Jobs fired people when he came back for EXACTLY not making great products (which is how he setup Apple to be so successful today). These are NOT great products. And, I’ll never apologize for asking for products to be perfect. That said, if I’m not doing the best job of learning about new technologies of anyone in the marketplace, I expect to get fired too. I work in an at-will state, where my boss can fire me for combing my hair the wrong way. That said, Time magazine named me one of the most influential twitterers out there, and Financial Times named me one of the top five most influential twitterers, I’m the most followed on Quora, I’m one of the top independent tech bloggers, etc etc so I must not be doing too much wrong. If you can make a case for me being fired, go ahead and make it. My boss is always listening at http://twitter.com/kr8tr and I’ll be happy to give you his email and phone number too.

      1. Wow…how full of yourself are you?   How is tweeting 160 character blurbs about already posted news considered influential? Influential to who? Who is being influenced by a tweet?   

      1. At 29.57, I think Steve summed it up very nicely on his philosophy of making great products. The part I actually liked was in the beginning of the video where he talks about the fact Apple should not have spent so much time trying to “be different” in the 90′s rather they should have focused on being the best in the market.  

  15. Fascinating Robert. The most criticized companies are generally the best ones.

    We enjoy their excellence and we EXPECT them to ship our expectations. The fact that we’re having this conversation about Apple and not some other company proves how awesome Apple is. Criticizing a bad company is a waste of time. Ironic, is it not?

      1. With that logic you would say that Microsoft must be one of the BEST companies in the IT space…possibly THE BEST based on this logic.  I think MS is a good company…has it’s challenges, as all do.  I think the logic is failed.  People take sides, always have favorites and will criticize their favorite’s competitors.  So bias or someone’s own personal agenda regarding their criticism of any company doesn’t indicate the quality of that company.

  16. I 100% agree with you. How can you possibly work for Apple and not be able to keep your work up to par with the reputation of the company?  Especially for such programs that are so important and widely used like Final Cut pro.  My name is Amy and I’m a “PC”, but people are “Macs” for a damn good reason.  Borderline perfection.

Comments are closed.