// HAPPENING TODAY
- Hewlett-Packard reports earnings after market close.
Icahn Just as Insufferable in Victory as in Defeat
Carl Icahn was right about Apple, and he wants everyone to know. When the company’s shares closed at a seven-for-one split-adjusted record high of $100.53 Tuesday afternoon, the cantankerous billionaire — who spent last fall mercilessly harassing Apple over its stock buyback program and the winter that followed compulsively buying up its shares — took to Twitter to gloat about the profits he amassed from the exercise. “About 1 yr ago we tweeted to our followers about our investment in $AAPL and that stock was ‘extremely undervalued,'” Icahn said on Twitter. “Believed $AAPL to be one of my ‘no-brainers.’ Anyone that invested at that time would be up 53% (including dividends).” Apple shares are trading at around $100.50 as I write this, giving the company a market value of about $602 billion.
Look, It’s a Rare Smoky-Tailed Plunger!
AP: “Workers at a state-of-the-art solar plant in the Mojave Desert have a name for birds that fly through the concentrated beams of solar energy focused upward by the plant’s 300,000 mirrors — ‘streamers,’ for the smoke plume that comes from birds that ignite in midair.”
A week of awful news and appalling social media behavior has forced a policy shift at Twitter. The company will now remove images of deceased individuals at the request of family members. The move comes a week after Robin Williams’s daughter abandoned her Twitter account after being harassed with offensive images of her late father and amid the company’s continuing efforts to purge gruesome photos and videos depicting the beheading of American photojournalist James Foley.
Barnes & Noble, Samsung Introduce New Also-Ran Tablet
Barnes & Noble and Samsung today uncrated their new co-branded tablet, the Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Nook, and along with it a new commercial that features people who appear to have never seen a tablet before.
Verizon Hard at Work on Next Big App Store Failure
Remember Vcast Apps, that dismal failure of an app store that Verizon shut down in 2013? No? Evidently Verizon doesn’t either. The Information reports that the carrier is developing another app store intended to rival the Google Play Store for Android. Wonder how long this one will last.
Take the Fark Challenge — See How Close You Can Come to the Boundaries of Acceptable Human Discourse
Amanda Hess, Slate: “Telling members of an anonymous Internet message board to stop hating women is, unfortunately, a monumental ask. But instructing posters to refrain from pushing the boundaries of acceptable human discourse — to avoid a “gray area” just in case — is an irresistible provocation. The gray area between vile offensiveness and dark humor is where Fark’s commenter community thrives.”
Former Microsoft CEO Will Now Shout Exclusively at Clippers Games
After 34 years with Microsoft, former CEO Steve Ballmer is finally moving on. With his successor, Satya Nadella, systematically dismantling his legacy, Ballmer on Tuesday stepped down from Microsoft’s board, saying his new ownership of the LA Clippers and the approach of NBA season made it impractical for him to remain. Given the circumstances surrounding his retirement from Microsoft, the only thing that’s surprising about Ballmer’s departure from the company’s board is that it took this long.
Choice Quotes From “Haunted Empire II: The Ballmer Legacy”
As difficult as Steve Ballmer’s tenure as Microsoft’s CEO may have been, it’s been great fun to watch. Bombastic and endlessly quotable, Ballmer was nearly as quick with a zinger as he was with his trademark foot-in-mouth proclamations. Here are a few worth remembering:
- On his early days at Procter & Gamble, working on the Coldsnap Freezer Dessert Maker: “Makes revolutionary desserts you never could have thought of before.”
- On Linux: “Linux is a cancer that attaches itself in an intellectual property sense to everything it touches.”
- On open source: “I would love to see all open-source innovation happen on top of Windows.”
- On the Bing brand: “We needed a name that says this is all about search.”
- On iPods: “The most common format of music on an iPod is ‘stolen.’”
- On the iPhone: “There’s no chance that the iPhone is going to get any significant market share. No chance.”
- On competing with Google in the cloud: “All in, baby! We are winning, winning, winning, winning.”
- On the now-discontinued Zune: “We’re firmly behind Zune.”
- On Surface inventory: “We built a few more devices than we could sell.”
- On the Windows Vista disaster: “Vista is not a failure. Is it something we’d like to improve? Of course.”
- On Google and its chairman: “I’m going to f–king bury that guy. I have done it before, and I will do it again. I’m going to f–king kill Google.”
- On possible advice he might give Google and Apple as they face increasing regulatory scrutiny: “No advice. I just wish them the best in getting lots of good experience.”
- On Android: “You don’t need to be a computer scientist to use a Windows Phone. I think you do to use an Android phone.”
- On the PC market: “I think that people are going to be using PCs in greater and greater numbers for years to come.”
- On beating Google in the search market: “We will out-innovate Google in key areas — we’re already seeing this in our maps and news search. … We are going to reinvent the search category through user experience and business model innovation.”
- On the Web: “We will move fast, we will get there, we will win the Web.”
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