The Northern Spy: stock in trade
TweetFollow Us on Twitter

The Northern Spy: stock in trade

By Rick Sutcliffe

Apple's stock continues to behave strangely, but with more explanation in recent weeks. Seems a couple of large hedge funds sold billions in Apple shares over a short period, driving the price down. More recently, another fund manager speculated on a stock split, which caused a short rally in the shares. Yet another wants to extract cash from Apple's hoard into his own pocket.

All these moves are both short-sighted and self-serving. Indeed, it seems to the Spy that any plans to sell large dollar values of a stock should be reportable, even as are ones to trade in large percentages. What if a billion in shares is less than a quarter of a percent? Surely transactions that large should be regarded as insider trading, for shares are obviously sensitive to such dumps. It's not every day that someone is ready and able to increase their holdings by several billion dollars.

Speculating on a stock split is like speculating on what new products Apple will release -- utterly futile. Either that, or it's a deliberate attempt to manipulate a stock that is known to be ultra sensitive to any kind of news, even when it is manufactured. 'Course, some people are adept at manufacturing both history and news.

Finally, it seems somewhat galling to the Spy to have an investor come to the plate with a small stake and demand Apple hand over cash just because he or his company owns a few shares. Seems to me there has to be a balance between the best interests of the company and the immediate desires of a few shareholders to acquire cash. From the outside, this looks like a clash between builders and looters.

Let's hope the company directors understand and act on the fact that their fiduciary duty goes far beyond maximizing shareholder value. Their first loyalty is to the health and well-being of the company, not to the Swiss bank accounts of a few already well-heeled and greedy-for-more speculators. That's why current wisdom has it that a board should include some (even a majority) of independent directors, who own no shares, and therefore will not interpret their duty to stakeholders to include only those like themselves. Or, when does such a duty become pure self-interest.

The Spy still believes ATNBT (Almost The Next Big Thing) from Apple could require a lot of capital, either to buy or to build infrastructure. If one of those Things is TV, for instance, both a content vault and a means of distribution could be necessary, and neither would come cheap. A pile of cash will be needed. If it is iWatch, neither is required, just some new wholesale channels to get them into every jewelry store on the continent.

And on the subject of new products, the Spy notes that Apple has already ceased taking orders on the MacPro in Europe due to product standards issues. Perhaps the rollout of the tower's replacement was originally planned for later in the year, but this may need to be accelerated, for Apple owes its developers.

The Spy is more convinced than ever that said replacement will not be a tower, but a system, a collection of components if you will. Given that MacPro towers are no longer displayed in retail stores, this seems a decision long made, awaiting only the depletion of current stock, the completion of OSX 10.9, and/or exit from the research and prototyping lab of the new professionals' gold standard machine--call it, for sake of argument, the iProMac.

Try these specs: Box number one is the CPU (8 or 16 cores, a couple of speed options), no more than twice the size of a MacMini. It has a power cord, two USB3, four Thunderbolt, one or two internal solid state drive positions, possibly two ethernet ports and HDMI, with Firewire and card reader slots clocking in at a very low percentage call. A truly minimalist design (which Apple often does) would have only the Thunderbolt ports, nothing else. It might not be a serviceable unit.

Optional box number two connects by Thunderbolt (or a proprietary electro-mechanical latch) and has up to six slots for PCI cards (maybe comes in two models, only one of which can take full length cards). It will be quickly imitated by third parties, but they will face long delays getting approval to market Thunderbolt devices.

Optional box number three (for which we may need to go third party for lack of interest on Apple's part) also connects by Thunderbolt and has multiple I/O ports, including video, audio, Firewire, USB, eSATA, etc. (though the Spy has little incentive to purchase any more eSATA--to finicky, little or no speed gain, and a reliability loss compared to FW800. Better to use a disk enclosure with its own Thunderbolt port.) Buy your own monitor, and optional box number four--for your raid array.

Trickiest engineering, and perhaps the reason for the delay--getting said boxes to play coolly without fans. You can bet one of iSteve's last will and testament items was to banish the latter going forward. Wouldn't it be nice to program it in the brand new Modula-2 R10? (link below)

Oh, yes, the mainstream media's speculators and Apple watchers have other interests. But frankly, the Spy has no interest in cellphones any more, little in the larger iPads and is happy enough for now with his several-years-old iPodTouch. When it breaks down, he'd like a pocket iPud/Pad/Pod with a five to seven inch screen (when unfolded or unrolled). By that time (three years?), its capabilities may approach those of his PIEA (Personal Intelligence Enhancement Appliance) that he described here, in "The Fourth Civilization", and in his Alternate History SF, starting two decades back. Perhaps by then the Internet and the apps to use it will begin to mimic the Metalibrary he described with the PIEA. If so, it will be Apple that defines both the software and hardware interface. No one else is innovating these days.

--The Northern Spy

Opinions expressed here are entirely the author's own, and no endorsement is implied by any community or organization to which he may be attached. Rick Sutcliffe, (a.k.a. The Northern Spy) is professor of Computing Science and Mathematics at Canada's Trinity Western University. He has been involved as a member or consultant with the boards of several organizations, including in the corporate sector, and participated in industry standards at the national and international level. He is a long time technology author and has written two textbooks and six novels, one named best ePublished SF novel for 2003. His columns have appeared in numerous magazines and newspapers (paper and online), and he's a regular speaker at churches, schools, academic meetings, and conferences. He and his wife Joyce have lived in the Aldergrove/Bradner area of BC since 1972.

Want to discuss this and other Northern Spy columns? Surf on over to ArjayBB.com. Participate and you could win free web hosting from the WebNameHost.net subsidiary of Arjay Web Services. Rick Sutcliffe's fiction can be purchased in various eBook formats from Fictionwise, and in dead tree form from Amazon's Booksurge.

URLs for Rick Sutcliffe's Arjay Enterprises:
The Northern Spy Home Page: http://www.TheNorthernSpy.com
opundo : http://opundo.com
Sheaves Christian Resources : http://sheaves.org
WebNameHost : http://www.WebNameHost.net
WebNameSource : http://www.WebNameSource.net
nameman : http://nameman.net
General URLs for Rick Sutcliffe's Books:
Author Site: http://www.arjay.ca
Publisher's Site: http://www.writers-exchange.com/Richard-Sutcliffe.html

URLs for items mentioned in this column
Modula-2 R10--see the link at: http://www.modula-2.com/

 

Community Search:
MacTech Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

Macs Fan Control 1.3.1.0 - Monitor and c...
Macs Fan Control allows you to monitor and control almost any aspect of your computer's fans, with support for controlling fan speed, temperature sensors pane, menu-bar icon, and autostart with... Read more
NetShade 6.3.1 - Browse privately using...
NetShade is an anonymous proxy and VPN app+service for Mac. Unblock your Internet through NetShade's high-speed proxy and VPN servers spanning seven countries. NetShade masks your IP address as you... Read more
Dragon Dictate 4.0.7 - Premium voice-rec...
With Dragon Dictate speech recognition software, you can use your voice to create and edit text or interact with your favorite Mac applications. Far more than just speech-to-text, Dragon Dictate lets... Read more
Persecond 1.0.2 - Timelapse video made e...
Persecond is the easy, fun way to create a beautiful timelapse video. Import an image sequence from any camera, trim the length of your video, adjust the speed and playback direction, and you’re done... Read more
GIMP 2.8.14p2 - Powerful, free image edi...
GIMP is a multi-platform photo manipulation tool. GIMP is an acronym for GNU Image Manipulation Program. The GIMP is suitable for a variety of image manipulation tasks, including photo retouching,... Read more
Sandvox 2.10.2 - Easily build eye-catchi...
Sandvox is for Mac users who want to create a professional looking website quickly and easily. With Sandvox, you don't need to be a Web genius to build a stylish, feature-rich, standards-compliant... Read more
LibreOffice 5.0.1.2 - Free, open-source...
LibreOffice is an office suite (word processor, spreadsheet, presentations, drawing tool) compatible with other major office suites. The Document Foundation is coordinating development and... Read more
f.lux 36.1 - Adjusts the color of your d...
f.lux makes the color of your computer's display adapt to the time of day, warm at night and like sunlight during the day. Ever notice how people texting at night have that eerie blue glow? Or wake... Read more
VirtualBox 5.0.2 - x86 virtualization so...
VirtualBox is a family of powerful x86 virtualization products for enterprise as well as home use. Not only is VirtualBox an extremely feature rich, high performance product for enterprise customers... Read more
File Juicer 4.43 - Extract images, video...
File Juicer is a drag-and-drop can opener and data archaeologist. Its specialty is to find and extract images, video, audio, or text from files which are hard to open in other ways. In computer... Read more

ReBoard: Revolutionary Keyboard (Utilit...
ReBoard: Revolutionary Keyboard 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Utilities Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Do everything within the keyboard without switching apps! If you are in WhatsApp, how do you schedule a... | Read more »
Tiny Empire (Games)
Tiny Empire 1.1.3 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $2.99, Version: 1.1.3 (iTunes) Description: Launch cannonballs and blow tiny orcs into thousands of pieces in this intuitive fantasy-themed puzzle shooter! Embark on an... | Read more »
Astropad Mini (Productivity)
Astropad Mini 1.0 Device: iOS iPhone Category: Productivity Price: $4.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: *** 50% off introductory price! ​*** Get the high-end experience of a Wacom tablet at a fraction of the price with Astropad... | Read more »
Emo Chorus (Music)
Emo Chorus 1.0.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Music Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0.0 (iTunes) Description: Realistic Choir simulator ranging from simple Chorus emulation to full ensemble Choir with 128 members. ### introductory offer... | Read more »
Forest Spirit (Games)
Forest Spirit 1.0.5 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0.5 (iTunes) Description: | Read more »
Ski Safari 2 (Games)
Ski Safari 2 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: The world's most fantastical, fun, family-friendly skiing game is back and better than ever! Play as Sven's sister Evana, share... | Read more »
Lara Croft GO (Games)
Lara Croft GO 1.0.47768 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $4.99, Version: 1.0.47768 (iTunes) Description: Lara Croft GO is a turn based puzzle-adventure set in a long-forgotten world. Explore the ruins of an ancient... | Read more »
Whispering Willows (Games)
Whispering Willows 1.23 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $4.99, Version: 1.23 (iTunes) Description: **LAUNCH SALE 50% OFF** - Whispering Willows is on sale for 50% off ($4.99) until September 9th. | Read more »
Calvino Noir (Games)
Calvino Noir 1.1 Device: iOS iPhone Category: Games Price: $3.99, Version: 1.1 (iTunes) Description: The film noir stealth game. Calvino Noir is the exploratory, sneaking adventure through the 1930s European criminal underworld.... | Read more »
Angel Sword (Games)
Angel Sword 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $6.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Prepare to adventure in the most epic full scale multiplayer 3D RPG for mobile! Experience amazing detailed graphics in full HD.... | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

iPad Air 2 on sale for up to $100 off MSRP
Best Buy has iPad Air 2s on sale for up to $100 off MSRP on their online store for a limited time. Choose free shipping or free local store pickup (if available). Sale prices available for online... Read more
MacBook Airs on sale for $100 off MSRP
Best Buy has MacBook Airs on sale for $100 off MSRP on their online store. Choose free shipping or free local store pickup (if available). Sale prices for online orders only, in-store prices may vary... Read more
Big Grips Lift Handle For iPad Air and iPad A...
KEM Ventures, Inc. which pioneered the extra-large, super-protective iPad case market with the introduction of Big Grips Frame and Stand in 2011, is launching Big Grips Lift featuring a new super-... Read more
Samsung Launches Galaxy Tab S2, Its Most Powe...
Samsung Electronics America, Inc. has announced the U.S. release of the Galaxy Tab S2, its thinnest, lightest, ultra-fast tablet. Blending form and function, elegant design and multitasking power,... Read more
Tablet Screen Sizes Expanding as iPad Pro App...
Larger screen sizes are gaining favor as the tablet transforms into a productivity device, with shipments growing 185 percent year-over-year in 2015. According to a new Strategy Analytics’ Tablet... Read more
Today Only: Save US$50 on Adobe Elements 13;...
Keep the memories. lose the distractions. Summer’s winding down and it’s time to turn almost perfect shots into picture perfect memories with Elements 13. And get the power to edit both photos and... Read more
1.4GHz Mac mini on sale for $449, save $50
Best Buy has the 1.4GHz Mac mini on sale for $50 off MSRP on their online store. Choose free shipping or free local store pickup (if available). Price for online orders only, in-store price may vary... Read more
12-inch 1.1GHz Gold MacBook on sale for $1149...
B&H Photo has the 12″ 1.1GHz Gold Retina MacBook on sale for $1149.99 including free shipping plus NY sales tax only. Their price is $150 off MSRP, and it’s the lowest price available for this... Read more
27-inch 3.3GHz 5K iMac on sale for $1849, sav...
Best Buy has the 27″ 3.3GHz 5K iMac on sale for $1849.99. Their price is $150 off MSRP, and it’s the lowest price available for this model. Choose free shipping or free local store pickup (if... Read more
Worldwide Tablet Shipments Expected to Declin...
Does Apple badly need a touchscreen convertible/hybrid laptop MacBook? Yes, judging from a new market forecast from the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Tablet Tracker, which... Read more

Jobs Board

*Apple* Music, Business Operations - Apple (...
**Job Summary** This role in Apple Music and in iTunes is working with…the songs that we all enjoy listening to in Apple Music. Your job will be to work wit Read more
Hardware Systems Integration Engineer - *App...
**Job Summary** We are seeking an enthusiastic electrical engineer for the Apple Watch team. This is a design engineering position that entails working with Read more
Engineering Project Manager - *Apple* TV -...
**Job Summary** The iTunes Apps project management team oversees iTunes, Apple TV, DRM and iOS Applications. We are looking for a project manager to help manage and Read more
*Apple* Retail - Multiple Positions (US) - A...
Sales Specialist - Retail Customer Service and Sales Transform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the store, you're also the Read more
*Apple* Retail Online Store: Customer Insigh...
**Job Summary** Apple Retail (Online Store) is seeking an experienced e-commerce analytics professional to join the Customer Insights Team. The Web e-Commerce Analyst Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.