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苹果最伟大的销售胜利:乔布斯是神!

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将乔布斯奉为神明是苹果最伟大的销售胜利
It is not enough to love your products anymore; when the people who created them die, you are now required to enter a kind of spiritual decline yourself
      仅仅热爱产品本身,这是远远不够的,当创造这些产品的人去世时,你会被要求变得委靡不振。

 

The deification of Steve Jobs was swift and amazing, an app that rose only in death. Jobs is now America's Princess Diana, a figure of tragedy, representing transformation, Jackie Kennedy being too long-dead to do it, and Michael Jackson too weird. I find this strange, because Jobs's real legacy was the way in which people now routinely ignore each other in public because they are playing with their iPhones and iPads. As ever with a new form of communication, one of the things you can do is communicate your indifference better.

       斯蒂芬.乔布斯被快速且疯狂地神化,一出“玫瑰唯有死亡”的戏码。乔布斯现在是美国的戴安娜王妃,是一个悲剧性人物,他代表着改革,杰基.肯尼迪花了太长的时间死搞改革,迈克尔.杰克逊则太怪异地进行转化。我发现这一奇怪现象,因为乔布斯真正的遗产是让人们现在在公众场合照例相互忽视,因为人们通常正在玩 iPhones 和iPads。像以前一样,随着一种新的联络方式的产生,你能做得一件事情就是让你的交往更冷漠。

I had an iPhone but I was relieved to lose it because it swallowed so much of my time in pointless ways. I enjoyed following myself down a street, as a dot on a map, for instance, but all I was really doing was being both CIA operative and target in a tiny movie of my own life. I also think, as others have noted, that the products look like children's toys. Beautiful simplicity, say the fans, but more simple than beautiful, made for CBBC. The equivalent 40 years ago would have been blind adherence to the ideology of Habitat.

       我曾有一部苹果手机,但是我很欣慰失去了它,因为它毫无意义地吞噬了我太多的时间。我享受自己像地图上的一个点,走在一条街道上,但是我真正全部所做的不过在自己生活的微小影片中成为中央情报局侦探和目标。像其他人强调的那样,我也认为苹果手机看起来像小孩子的玩具。粉丝们认为它美丽、简约,但是,相比美丽,它更简约,像是为英国广播公司儿童频道(CBBC)定做!相当于四十年前就已经盲目地坚持以人为中心的思想。

But I am in a minority. Jobs's death has stopped the clock. As the corpse cooled, all aspects of his life and legacy were detailed by a prostrate media. He is now, just a little too late to enjoy it, the world's most famous man, one pixel short of saviour. His memorial service last Sunday was covered by the broadsheets, who reported that the golden triumvirate of Bill Clinton, Stephen Fry and Bono appeared to mourn and rend their garments. This made me laugh, I am afraid, because if the question "Which global celebrities are most likely to attend the memorial service of Steve Jobs?" was asked on Family Fortunes the top answers would surely be – Bill Clinton, Stephen Fry and Bono. Who else could it be?

       但我并不是少数派。乔布斯的辞世让时间静止。随着体温的冷却,他的生活和遗产等所有方面都被媒体详细报导。他现在是救世主,只是有点太晚去享受“世界最著名的人”这一称号。上周日,纪念乔布斯的追悼会由一张大幅海报覆盖,这张海报记录了由比尔.克林顿,斯蒂芬.弗雷和博诺组成的黄金三角现身哀悼,悲伤的撕裂了衣服!这真让我发笑,我很畏惧,因为如果在“家族财富”上提问“哪些世界名人最可能出席乔布斯的追悼会”,答案当然是:比尔.克林顿,斯蒂芬.弗雷和博诺。还能是谁?

Some of the mourners, appropriately, tweeted their loss, which I am sure Jobs would appreciate, being the world's chief facilitator of manufactured emotions in 140 characters or less. The more general population, who are practised in responding to the media's idiocies, obediently responded. They were told they have lost something precious, and so the more credulous grieved. Logos representing Jobs's death were designed, circulated, fought over and abandoned. Apple shops became instant shrines at which iPads transformed themselves into representations of flickering candles, which was chilling because, as you know, computers can't mourn. Some iPads were, bizarrely, left at the shops as an offering, as if modern gods demand not chickens, but small electrical goods, to soothe their rages. (Dear God – please restore service!) I still suspect that Apple employees left them there and retrieved them when the cameras went home. To donate a £400 iPad to a billionaire's makeshift shrine is a very un-Apple gesture, because it is unprofitable. Others left apple cores, which is merely littering with a mad sense of purpose.

       一些哀悼者适当地表达了乔布斯的离世是他们的损失,我肯定乔布斯会感激让他成为世界上制造情感的首席服务商。越是普通人群,在应对媒体的白痴行为时,越有可能乖乖回应。他们被告知他们已经失去了一些珍贵的东西,所以,也就更悲痛地轻易相信。标识语表示乔布斯的去世是被设计的,被散布的,被争夺的,被抛弃的。苹果商店瞬间变成圣地,iPads转变成摇曳烛光的象征。这令人寒心,因为,正如你所知,电脑无法哀悼。一些iPads怪诞地作为祭品留在商店,好像现代上帝不是需要鸡肉,而是小电子商品去安抚他们的狂怒。(亲爱的上帝---请恢复服务!)我一直怀疑,苹果雇员们把那些产品留在那里,当摄像机不再拍摄时,再将它们重新取回。捐赠一台价值£400 的iPad给一个亿万富翁的临时神社,是一个非常“非苹果”的举措,因为它毫无益处。其他人离开苹果商店时,仅仅是有意地充满悲伤的情绪。

How to unpick this? Grief as a global phenomenon is not new. It is essentially media-led (it fills and sells papers) and it always leaves a bitter taste, because for every stranger you think you mourn, there is a friend you forget to remember. These relationships are false and imagined and always created with the rich and powerful, which makes me wonder if it is the lifestyle, not the life, we praise when we turn to Jobs. It is ordinary bowing before power, just rather odder because the Apple products have a bright marketing sheen of democracy – we are all equal before the world wide web – which is ridiculous, considering how few can afford them and how aggressively the company protects its software.

       怎样拆开看这个事情?悲痛成为全球现象并不新颖。它本质上是由媒体引导(媒体编写、销售文章),且一直留下一丝苦味,因为对每个局外人来说,哀悼是因为有个朋友忘了铭记。这些关系是错误的,充满想象的,一直由那些富人和有权人创建的,这使得我想知道,如果这是生活方式,而非生活,当我们转向乔布斯时,我们会赞美吗?在权利面前鞠躬很普遍,只是更加奇怪,因为苹果产品有一个鲜明的民主销售色彩----在万维网前,我们都是平等的----这是荒谬的,想想有多少人能负担它们,想想这家公司是如何积极地保护它的软件。

But I have not seen it for a CEO before. Could it be that the eulogies for Jobs are a new expression of pure materialism? It is not enough to love your products; when the people who created them die, you are required to enter a kind of spiritual decline. What does it mean to weep for the inventor of the iPhone? For me it is Apple's greatest marketing triumph and the very opposite of a spiritual experience.

       但我之前从没见过有首席执行官举办这样的活动。它能看成是对乔布斯作为纯唯物主义的全新表达的颂扬么?仅仅喜欢你的产品是不够的,当创造它们的那个人去世了,你也被要求进入一种情绪低迷的状态。为iPhone的发明者哭泣,这意味着什么?对我来说,这是苹果最伟大的销售胜利,一场精神体验的非常对立面。

This is easy for Apple to manage, as newspapers inexorably ease from editorial to advertorial. There are now, quite often, double page spreads about yogurt, and worse things than yogurt. The reason is profit. Recycling press releases is cheap, because PRs are unlikely to libel their own clients. Just last week I received an invitation, via email, to plug a product which would heat my swimming pool, if I had one, which I do not. A new swimming pool heating system is not in itself news, but a news hook is attached, making a broader point in hope of making it into the paper – UK entrepreneur confirms luxury market is buoyant despite global recession. I am invited to lunch with supermarket PRs, to dine in restaurants for free and sometimes to try out beauty serums, or, as I call them, slimes. These are products in search of a page, and they are not news.

       对苹果来说,这很容易成功,就像报纸无情地缓解社论式广告。现在频繁地用双倍版面传播酸奶酪,以及其他比酸奶酪更严重的事情。这么做的缘由是利润驱使。循环利用新闻稿的成本很低,因为公关们不可能诽谤自己的客户。就在上周,我接收到一封邀请函,是通过电邮发送过来的,插穿了一种能加热我的游泳池的产品,如果我有,但实际上我并没有游泳池。一个新的游泳池加热系统本身并不是新闻,但是新闻挂钩是附加的,扩大了接受范围,让它有望出现在纸上--英国企业家证实,尽管全球经济衰退,奢侈品市场依旧蓬勃。我被邀请同超级市场公关们一起午餐,免费在餐馆吃饭,偶尔试试美容精华,或者当我联系他们后,为我涂抹深海泥。这些是在一张页面上找到的产品,它们并不是新闻。

No, this the churnalism so wonderfully detailed in the Guardian journalist Nick Davies's obituary of the newspaper industry, Flat Earth News. It was rampant in the life of Jobs, and at his death it achieved a kind of apogee. Last month the New York Times ran an editorial entitled You Love Your iPhone. Literally. It argued that people respond similarly to images of the Apple logo and images of the Pope; iPhone users, the author stated, after performing tests on babies, literally loved their iPhones. I was shown this editorial by a PR. Even he was amazed that a company should get such coverage or, to give it its proper term, idiotic drooling. Again, this is odd, because the technology Jobs created is destroying newspapers. It makes me wonder if my trade has developed, en masse, Apple-themed Stockholm Syndrome. We love our murderer.

       不,在《卫报》记者尼克.戴维斯关于报纸产业的讣告---《平地球新闻》中,对这样的伪记者有精彩详细地描述!在乔布斯生前,这种现象很猖狂,在他死时,达到最盛。上个月,《纽约时报》发表了一篇题为“爱你的iPhone!”社论,争论人们给苹果商标图像和罗马教皇的图像给出类似的回应,作者陈述,iPhone 用户在产品测试表演结束后,确实喜欢他们的iPhones。一个公关人员给我展示了这篇社论。他甚至感到吃惊,一个公司应该获得这样的认知,或者给它取个恰当的术语----白痴流口水。这又是一件怪事,因为乔布斯创造的技术正在消灭报纸。我想知道,我的交易是否会一起发展成苹果主题的斯德哥尔摩综合症。我们喜欢上凶手。undefined

The truth? In many ways Apple is just another very profitable company, which in July announced that its revenues were $28.57bn, up 90% year-on-year, with profits of $7.31bn, up 124% year-on-year. It is visionary in its products and marketing techniques, but conventional in its working practices and goals. It is, like most world-munching corporations, a feudal hierarchy. There is nothing visionary in transferring the manufacture of your products from the US to China, and subcontracting the work to other companies, thereby circumventing labour laws, as Apple did 10 years ago. The working conditions of those who manufacture the products are appalling and ill paid. Not even the glorious design of whichever number iPhone we are on now could keep the "cluster" of suicides at the Apple supplier Foxconn's main manufacturing plant in Longhua out of the news last year. Overtime in these factory cities is often forced, not voluntary, and with every article puffing the i-Must-Embrace-the-Future-Or-Die, there will be more forced overtime as the factories race to meet demand the newspapers create. All the horrors are there, if you look for them. According to China Labour Watch, Apple pays just £3.99 for the production of your £600 iPhone, and it is the workers who pay for their – and our – greed, so we can tweet and be moving dots on a map. As Mike Daisey said, also in the New York Times, Jobs could have done something about this. He could have really changed the world. He chose not to.

       真相?从许多方面来说,苹果只是一家非常盈利的公司而已。在六月,它公布收入为285.7亿美元,与去年同期数相比,增长了90%,利润为73.1亿美元,增长124%。它的产品和销售技术是梦幻的,但它的工作方法和目标却是传统的。像大多数世界级企业一样,它采用封建等级制度。将产品从美国转移至中国不存在任何梦幻。将工作转包给其他公司,从而绕过劳工法,就像十年以前苹果所做的那样。制造产品的工作条件恶劣,工人薪水微薄。无论iPhone的多少光荣设计,我们现在依然记得去年发生在苹果供应商--富士康主要制造厂发生的“自杀集体”事件。在这些加工城市,工人经常被迫、而非自愿加班,在每条鼓吹“我必须拥抱未来,或者死去”的条款中,当工厂竞赛地满足报纸创造的要求时,工人们将有更多的压迫性加班。如果深入挖掘,会发现各种恐惧。根据《中国劳工观察》,你手中标价£600的iPhone, 苹果只支付£3.99 的成本,是工人们在支付他们的以及我们的贪婪。所以我们能录高音,能在地图上移动点。正如迈克.黛西所言,她也在《纽约时代》,乔布斯本能为这些做点什么,他真的能改变这个世界。但是,他选择了不做。


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