Tech Check

Apple Meets Moses: The Mac Tablet

Not since Moses came down from on high with those commandments has a tablet generated so much interest. (Unless you count Mel Brooks with his 15, er, 10 commandments when he dropped one of his tablets!)

But such is the case with the Mac Tablet, MacSlate, iPad, or whatever it might be called from Apple . And it all makes sense in a strangely biblical way since Apple was the company that unleashed that so-called "Jesus phone."

News is a funny thing. When it comes to Apple, it's more about what's recent than what's actually new. The world is all a twitter now that the Wall Street Journal has jumped on the tablet train, breaking news this afternoon that the Apple event later this month will in fact be about the tablet, which will be unveiled with a 10 or 11 inch screen and hit store shelves in March.

I guess that's news, but the blogosphere has been rife with other details: the event will be Jan. 27 instead of Jan. 26. The tablet will sell for under $1,000. It'll sell 10 million units in its first year and generate $1 billion in revenue. Those are the rumors, and they won't become fact or fiction officially until Jobs walks out on stage (rumored to be at San Fran's Yerba Buena Gardens, by the way) later this month. Or next. Or whenever.

Speculation is fun, and some of the rumors sound more believable than others. And some of the news organizations might be more solid than others.

I too have spoken to insiders, trusted sources, friends, and others all claiming to have bits and pieces of tablet knowledge. But none can string the entire story together; none has a photo, or an image. And that picture - a legit one - is worth more than a 1,000 rumors. Give me an Apple I can sink my teeth into.

In the meantime, we all continue to dig, and wonder, and impatiently wait, doing Apple's media and PR for it, buying into the rumor game days or weeks or months before the company is ready for release.

It's fun, though not so funny, to watch as we all breathlessly chase another headline about the tablet-that-might-be even though the most recent headlines (the ones from today) look suspiciously like the ones from last week and last month.

They may be right. Or wrong. We'll know when we know, which is about the same time that Steve Jobs has circled on his desk blotter, and highlighted on his iPhone calendar, following the single, most important Apple commandment: When Jobs - and only Jobs - is good and gosh-darned ready.

All the rest is just sport.

Questions?  Comments?