I'm not sure if I'm quite buying this blog that Firewire on iBooks is going away.

Now I'm hearing that FireWire is gone completely from the new Intel iBooks that are coming next month, but its loss should come as a surprise to no one, given Apple's moves of late. A little birdy told me that the new Intel PowerBooks will lose FireWire 400 completely and retain only one FireWire 800 port as a concession to video professionals.

If Mac is iLife, and the updates to the iMac suggest that it largely is, what's the purpose of removing Firewire from iBooks? Firewire is far and away the most widely used (afaict) method of connecting DVcorders to computers. O'Grady conspiracy theorizes that this could be a concession to Intel, and it certainly forces would-be iBook buyers to up-buy (opposite end of "upsell", I guess) to the Powerbook, which makes sense, but iLife starts with "i"; it's supposed to be full of easily accessible, end-user apps. Removing Firewire effectively kills iMovie for iBook users.

(As random context, I've heard a few say simply removing the monitor spanning feature from iBooks caused them to upbuy, and they weren't real happy when I pointed out a firmware hack that lets iBooks solve that obvious commercially-oriented crippling. This both shows, I hope, that the crippling works in that some buy the next offering on up and that it potentially locks out would-be Mac owners. I know part of my iBook G4 purchase, even though I already had an iBook 500, was driven by the sweet extra screen real estate when I'm working at home. I wouldn't've gone, obviously, to the Powerbook to get the feature.)

Anyhow, iLife belongs with iBooks and that includes iMovie. The laptop scene is where the Mac is most competitive, and I'd hate to see it lose out with this move, not only in that the iBook gives less for the buck, but that a large piece of iLife would be rendered unaccessible for new Mac users, like freshmen in college (who seem to be awfully iBook friendly) who provide the new geneartions of Mac users.

Firewire is part of the iBook's mission. It's not something where crippling, much less removal, makes any sense.