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ExtraBITS for 3 November 2014

Apple CEO Tim Cook dominated the news this week, with a notable personal announcement and a variety of hints about Apple’s future at the WSJD Live conference. Also this week in ExtraBITS, Backblaze takes a look at OS X 10.10 Yosemite’s adoption compared to that of Windows 8, and Chris Breen of Macworld shares a way to revert back to iTunes 11.

Apple CEO Tim Cook: “I’m proud to be gay.” — In a first-person piece posted on Bloomberg Businessweek, Apple CEO Tim Cook writes, “While I have never denied my sexuality, I haven’t publicly acknowledged it either, until now. So let me be clear: I’m proud to be gay.” He goes on to explain why he decided to make this fact public. “I don’t consider myself an activist, but I realize how much I’ve benefited from the sacrifice of others. So if hearing that the CEO of Apple is gay can help someone struggling to come to terms with who he or she is, or bring comfort to
anyone who feels alone, or inspire people to insist on their equality, then it’s worth the trade-off with my own privacy.” Apple was a supporter of gay rights long before Cook joined the company in 1998, offering benefits to domestic partners of gay employees as far back as 1993. Back then, county commissioners in Williamson County, Texas (just outside Austin) temporarily rejected Apple’s request for a $750,000 tax rebate when building an $80 million business park because of Apple’s HR policies surrounding gay employees (see “Nothing Like A Little Bigotry To Brighten Your Day,” 6 December 1993, and “Williamson County, Part II,” 13
December 1993).

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How to Revert to iTunes 11 — If you hate iTunes 12 and long for the relatively halcyon days of iTunes 11, then Macworld’s Chris Breen has your back. Borrowing a tip from Jacqui Cheng, formerly of Ars Technica, Breen has outlined seven steps for going back to the previous version of iTunes.

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Backblaze Analyzes Yosemite and Windows 8 Adoption Rates — Cloud backup service Backblaze is back with more analysis, this time looking at operating system upgrade rates over hard drive statistics. Backblaze’s Adam Nelson found that it took 4 days for 21 percent of Backblaze users to adopt Yosemite, while it took nearly 2 years for the same percentage of users to upgrade to Windows 8. Nelson offers a few theories for the disparity, including locked-down corporate computers, a lukewarm reception for Windows 8, and the fact that Yosemite is free.

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Highlights of Tim Cook’s WSJD Live Interview — Apple CEO Tim Cook made an appearance at the WSJD Live conference, and Apple Spotlight has listed some of the most interesting tidbits from that interview. Cook said that Apple Pay activated over one million credit cards in its first 72 hours and that Apple stopped making the iPod classic because it could no longer obtain the parts for it. Cook again hinted at future TV plans by comparing the current TV experience to living in the 1970s. Unmentioned in Apple Spotlight’s summary was a hint at an Apple Pay
partnership with e-commerce giant Alibaba.

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