Apple Speaks: Schiller Defends App Store Approval Process

In what BusinessWeek is describing as “his first extensive interview on the subject,” Phil Schiller, everyone’s favorite Senior Vice President of Worldwide Product Marketing for Apple (s aapl), has defended Apple’s application approval process.

I’ve read through it a few times, and I’d hardly call it “extensive.” I think it’s more accurately described as “PR spin” more than anything else. Schiller’s opening salvo is actually an advertisement.

We’ve built a store for the most part that people can trust. You and your family and friends can download applications from the store, and for the most part they do what you’d expect, and they get onto your phone, and you get billed appropriately, and it all just works.

It’s obviously going to transmit good vibes to the majority of BusinessWeek readers (who likely weren’t even aware of an application approval process in the first place, never mind a problem with it) but it’s unlikely to smooth the feathers of frustrated, angry developers. See, Mr. Schiller not only defended the approval process, but said that developers actually like it. Read More about Apple Speaks: Schiller Defends App Store Approval Process

WWD Interview: Israel “Izzy” Hyman,

izzy_picIsrael “Izzy” Hyman’s passion is video. He’s a video podcaster who makes a living producing three different online shows:

  • Izzy Video — How to shoot and edit video. It covers a wide range of topics like cinematography, lighting, recording good audio, gear, editing and distribution.
  • — This show is hosted by Hyman’s wife, Noell, and it’s all about scrapbooking and design principles.
  • Rolling R’s — This show is hosted by Hyman’s friend, Larry Keim, and teaches people the Spanish language.

All three are membership sites where some of the content is available for free, but the majority of the material is available to paid members only. I caught up with Hyman to ask him a few questions about the work he does, and how he does it. Below is an edited transcript of our interview:
Simon: How did you originally get into video? And what made you decide to start blogging about it? Read More about WWD Interview: Israel “Izzy” Hyman,

Do this One Thing Before You Accept that Web Job

top_secret-A friend of mine who’s worked in a slew of web jobs that have sorely disappointed him has finally found a role he thinks will be fun, challenging and rewarding.

He knew of the company, met multiple times with different team members, had been taken on a tour of the office space, and was happy with the offer they’d negotiated. It all looked good. But before he jumped in and signed up, he made one final check that all web workers should undertake.

He called a friend of his who used to work for the company to get the inside story on what it’s like there. Read More about Do this One Thing Before You Accept that Web Job

Apple Europe VP Talks Macs, iPhones, iPods and Surprises

apple_europe_countriesPascal Cagni, Apple (s aapl) vice president and general manager for Europe, the Middle East, India and Africa, did in an interview with Katie Allen of the Guardian. Speaking after Apple’s earnings report for the fourth fiscal quarter, Cagni was optimistic on the Mac in Europe, guarded about the iPod, and enigmatic about “surprises” in the future.

Questioned on Apple’s success in Europe during the recession, Cagni responded that the Mac is “typically above 20-25 [percent] market share in each of the countries.” That’s about twice the market share in the U.S., and you have to wonder how the numbers add up to worldwide figures that put the Mac under 5 percent. Still, at Monday’s conference call, it was noted that Mac growth was around 40 percent in Spain, Germany and France, so the Mac is doing very well indeed in Europe. Less so, the iPod. Read More about Apple Europe VP Talks Macs, iPhones, iPods and Surprises

My 30-Second “Interview” With Jonathan Ive

Jony (Jonathan) Ive

No, I’m not kidding. This actually happened. I had a 30-second “interview” with Jonathan Ive.

On the way out of the Moscone Center this morning, as streams of people are leaving to get some fresh air and digest all of the announcements from the WWDC 2009 keynote address, I see a familiar face walking towards me. It’s Jonathan Ive. I can’t believe it. This guy is design royalty.

But I’m from Los Angeles: We’re not afraid to approach the rich and famous in my city. Heck, I produce theater with lots of famous actors and comedians, so I often have to work with known personalities. This was a rare opportunity and certainly not a time for sudden shyness, so I approached the master designer and introduced myself.

The following is an exact transcript of what transpired. Read More about My 30-Second “Interview” With Jonathan Ive

Interview: Yuuguu’s CEO Discusses the Launch of Screensharing For Skype Users

Screensharing application Yuuguu is an old favorite of WebWorkerDaily. Today, the company launched support for Skype users, bringing its screensharing expertise to one of the largest communication platforms in the world. We caught up with CEO Anish Kapoor to learn a little about the features announced today and the company’s future plans.

Imran: Could you outline the new features announced in the latest edition of Yuuguu?

Anish: This new edition was all about making it really easy for Skype users to instantly screenshare and collaborate in real time with anyone, on any major IM network, not just Skype. Read More about Interview: Yuuguu’s CEO Discusses the Launch of Screensharing For Skype Users

Coworking Stories: Old Broadcasting House Founder, Linda Broughton

I first met Linda Broughton — head of NTI Leeds, part of Leeds Met University — in May 2007, at a meeting on the use of open-source software in the public sector where I planted the seed of an idea to develop a coworking community in Leeds in Northern England.
Within a few months, Linda had launched the “met:space” coworking community at Old Broadcasting House, which has now become the hub for most of the city’s web and new media community (also see my previous interview with OBH resident, James Ward).

I spoke with Linda about the development of OBH and her thoughts on coworking.

Imran: Tell us a little about the background of OBH. What were the motivations for coworking in Leeds?
Linda: It started out as an idea space for our graduates to move on to. We recognized that many of the students’ final year projects had the potential to become commercial businesses, so we wanted to develop a space that could support them in the early days. Read More about Coworking Stories: Old Broadcasting House Founder, Linda Broughton

Coworking Stories: IndyHall Co-Founder, Alex Hillman

Alex Hillman is the co-founder of Independents Hall (colloquially known as IndyHall) a “coworking space and community” in Philadelphia. IndyHall is home to designers, developers, writers, artists, entrepreneurs, scientists, educators, small business owners, telecommuters, marketers, videographers and game developers, amongst other industries.
I spoke with Alex about his motivations for bootstrapping IndyHall, the experience of running the community, his hopes for the future and advice for others. Incredibly, Alex recorded an extraordinary and engaging 30 minutes of video for us, telling the fascinating story of IndyHall’s history and future.
We edited together some highlights on the background of IndyHall, along with plans for the future of Philadelphia’s coworking community as a single video here for readers who want a brief introduction to the IndyHall story.
[vimeo 4060986]
You can find the full set of questions, answered as short video clips, over on YouTube:

Incidentally, the relaunch of the IndyHall web site site just a few days ago is noteworthy in its approach to cohering and aggregating the community of coworkers in the city, providing a platform and a voice for their agenda.
If you’re interested in the experiences of coworking community founders, you should also check out our earlier interview with Stephanie Booth, founder of Lausanne’s Eclau coworking community.
Like Stephanie, Alex’s insights and experiences are invaluable. Do share your own experiences of coworking or founding a coworking community in the comments below.

Coworking Stories: Digital Coach, James Ward

James WardJames Ward is a member of Leeds’ Old Broadcasting House (OBH) coworking community in Northern England, working as freelance “digital coach.” I spoke with James on his thoughts and experiences over the last few months as one of the most active evangelists of his coworking community.
Imran: How did you first encounter coworking as a concept and what drew you to it?
James: I heard about an event for freelancers, GoingSolo, being held at OBH in Leeds. I had started working freelance just a few months earlier but from past experience working on my own I had learned the importance of getting out and making connections with other people. Working on your own every day in the spare bedroom can get pretty lonely and soul-destroying.
For me, attending this event was one of those serendipitous moments in life that lead to changes more profound and beneficial than I could have imagined. First off, it was my introduction to a network of professional peers all talking about the same challenges and issues as I recognize: managing finances, clients, confidence. The exchange of ideas was exhilarating. I came away from the day on an absolute high…and I had also discovered coworking. Read More about Coworking Stories: Digital Coach, James Ward

Coworking Stories: Eclau Founder, Stephanie Booth

eclau-logo-21Eclau (pronounced eck-lo) is a coworking space in Lausanne, Switzerland, founded by Stephanie Booth. Booth spoke with me about her motivation for starting Eclau, her experiences running it and her future plans, and offer up some tips for anyone thinking of starting a coworking space.
WWD: Tell us a little about the background for Eclau — what were the motivations for coworking in Lausanne?
Booth: I’d heard about coworking, and visited Citizen Space in San Francisco. I thought it would be lovely to have a coworking space in Lausanne, but at the time, I was quite happy working from home. A couple of other people in the area were interested, but I was in “follower” mode — not “leader” [mode].
In autumn 2007, a friend of mine approached me. He had some free space in one of his shops that he wanted to transform into a community office for freelancers and other local innovators, and wanted to know if I could take care of it. I told him about coworking and he said, “That’s it!”
Read More about Coworking Stories: Eclau Founder, Stephanie Booth