Saturday, 10 April 2010

Is there a link between turning people away from a B&B and the Apple iPad?

Now that's a daft question.

Of course there isn't.

Or is there.

Privacy, rights and permission are in the focus at the moment:

there's the gay couple being turned away from a home-run Bed & Breakfast

There's the US preacher who was stopped from speaking (and arrested) because he was "anti-gay".

Then there's apple's drive to open up a new market - and control it.

Reading this about the iPad (Cory Doctorow on BoingBoing), I recognised a lot to agree with. I also read this about the iPad (Stephen Fry in Time magazine) and was taken by the quest for engineering purity. And this is worth a read too.

There's two worlds colliding: freedom & control.

Both Doctorow & Fry talk about both ideas.

Doctorow wants freedom to tinker/understand, control over what his devices can do (and what content he can use them for.

Fry wants freedom from glitch-laden hardware & software, allowing him to control how he interacts with content.

Those who run a B&B from their home want the right to say who they welcome into their home. Others want the right to stay in any place that makes itself available as a B&B.

A guy who passionately believes something wants to respond with his views (non-violently) when people ask, others want to be able to silence people who disagree with them. Whether he's right or wrong in your view - the fact he was locked up for answer people's questions and expressing his opinion - without violence. Hmm...

Clearly, there's a ton of detail being missed here, and I'm not coming down on one side of the other, but I think there's a link.

The iPad is beautiful (I'm told). It's functionally amazing and heralds another shift in how we interact with content.

But that it's locked down - which means there's limitations on what can be done on the platform. It's controlled. Not that is an entirely bad thing. Infact, it may help prevent our children who are fast becoming users of these tools & technology.

But this is one to watch. Particularly given that Apple have announced a new form of advertising on their mobile devices - and "ads will have access to location, accelerometer, and a lot of other stuff."

I ain't preachin' fear, but do you think we should have our eyes open and be aware of what's going on around us?

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