Apple Keynote Notes For N00bs

There are some people who are comparatively new to the Mac community I know, who may not be aware of all the customs that accompany a [Stevenote]( Who would be better than me to introduce them to the customs? Everyone else, that’s who, but since they’re not around, I’ll do it. Even if you think you already know it all, read this to either find out new things or prove me wrong.

The Stevenote, as it’s called, is the time when Our Dear Leader™ Steve Jobs gives us a presentation and tells us the new things Apple is introducing. The two main fixed ones are the keynote for the Macworld Conference and Exhibition in San Francisco near the beginning of the year, and the keynote for the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco in the middle of the year. Further announcements take place all throughout the rest of the year, with approximately one or two weeks warning each. The next one will be January 15th at 18:00 CET, i.e very very soon, which is why I’m posting this.

As most of them happen at 10 o’clock US West Coast time, they are in the perfect spot to watch after work here in Europe. The average time you should plan for it is about two hours, although back in the day, shorter ones were more common. If you really want to feel the joy of the keynote, I guess you have to be there. This is not a realistic option for most Mac fans, of course, so there is a need for alternatives.

Back in the day, before the iPod brought all the Windows-loving kiddies in, there was a webcast where you could view the keynote live. Hackers could also tune in their satellite dishes to a certain frequency and recieve the keynote or destroy an alien space station in the orbit of Saturn. However, both of these are no longer an option. The video of the keynote is still produced however, and available for watching later. If you want to watch the keynote without knowing what is released, then watch [MacRumors]( They always make a non-spoiler post you can bookmark, which will be updated as soon as the video is available and links to it.

The other option, which I plan to use, is a text feed. Text feed means people sitting in the crowd watching the keynote post what happens, plus sometimes images and their own thoughts. In the old days, the big rumor sites switched to a high-load mode with drastically reduced features. MacRumors, for example, had a hilarious yellow-on-blue design for keynotes. But hey, it worked. German site [MacNews]( still operates that way. The modern thing to do is to either have a normal blog/news post that gets updated, or a dedicated site that uses Science™ to update itself “ottomatically”.

The most notable example of the second type is [MacRumorsLive](, child of MacRumors. It failed horribly on it’s first try, but has since become very stable and reliable. Of the other kind, I’d recommend [Ars Technica]( for text-only, and [Engadget]( and [Gizmodo]( both provide images as well. If they cover this keynote, that is. I’ve not been able to find out whether Gizmodo plans to do so. And before you ask: No, you don’t get to choose between the sites. Have all of them open and compare what they say, because some are faster for some items, and you can bet that someone will mess something up on his particular site.

Now, the second part is the live commentary. As stuff gets announced, you’ll need someone to talk with or hear opinions or mock things. The best way of doing that is, of course, with a live Mac fan on some connection. Many sites offer IRC channels that will be full of people discussing what happens. Also, some sites offer live commentary. Of those, the ones I’d recommend most are [Crazy Apple Rumors Site]( and [Fake Steve Jobs]( I have no idea whether CARS (as it’s known for short) will actually post, but this time not of laziness: They simply haven’t said whether they will or not yet. If they do, it’s guaranteed to be hilarious. FSJ, on the other hand, has never done that before as far as I know, so I can’t vouch for quality. However, for him I know he’s going to post something, and what he posts when it’s not keynote is always great anyway. Notice that for both it’s a very realistic chance that they post something not suitable for work, small children or pregnant men. Or women.

Finally, you mustn’t miss [Keynote Bingo]( A tradition started by Ars Technica’s John Siracusa, it should explain itself pretty much. There are automated bingo card generators out there if you Google for it, but the one and only real Bingo card is this one. As this is aimed at n00bs instead of Mac Pros (pun intended), let me just explain that the PDA shown there is actually the Apple Newton, a PDA Apple used to produce until 1997 (or was it 1998? Not sure), which was far ahead of it’s time but a financial failure. Mac fans have cried for it’s reintroduction ever since it was cancelled.

I think that’s the most important points. Have fun!

Written on January 13th, 2008 at 12:05 am


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