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Studying the CompetitorsVia my Son

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Ted Wallingford writes: “If I were Steve [Ballmer], I would allow my kids to use Google and the iPod, observe their activities, and find out just what the heck Google and Apple are doing right! Will the Microsoft ever learn? Come on, little Microsoft!! I’m pulling for you I really am!”

I agree. Heck, just hang out with my son for a few hours. He loves his Apple stuff, including his iPod (Dave Winer got him an iBook for his birthday back in January).

My brother-in-law, who works for Apple on the Mac team, loves egging him on too. Bought him some Apple shirts, one of which you can see him wearing at brunch on Sunday on Tara’s blog.

I tell Patrick he better do his homework before buying anything, whether it’s from our side of the fence or somewhere else. I want him to explain to me why it’s better and what he didn’t like about the competition and he better have a better answer than “it’s cooler.” Although that pretty much was his answer for why he bought an iPod. Turns out peer pressure on the playground is driving a lot of technology choices. Teachers tell me that’s how MySpace ripped through their schools too. Patrick told me “my school is an iPod school.”

He broke his iPod, by the way (dropped it and broke the screen) so he’s saving up for another device that plays media. Will it be an iPod or will there be something else to catch his fancy? Right now he thinks he’s gonna buy another iPod.

I’m a bad parent and a bad evangelist, what can I say? But on the other hand, if he ever switches away from an iPod, you’ll be likely to listen to him. I’d love to send him to SteveB’s house and see if Steve can convince him to switch.

Personal note to Patrick: finish your homework, update your blog (it’s been a while), and don’t play Second Life too much.

Oh, and Steve Ballmer: you’ll be happy to hear that he’s bugging me to buy an Xbox 360 – I haven’t yet cause I’ve been home something like a handful of weekends since the launch, but that should change soon (he holds an Xbox camp for all the kids in the neighborhood during the summer) and he wants me to get him a SmartPhone.

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Robert Scoble is the founder of the Scobleizer blog. He works as PodTech.net’s Vice President of Media Development.

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Studying the CompetitorsVia my Son
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