Monday, January 01, 2007

One Apple fanboy in particular

As a devoted Digger through and through, as I have been for some time now, I am fascinated by one particular character from a cast crazier than Gene Wilder, Zero Mostel, and Richard Pryor all put together: Daniel Eran Dilger. The man seems to hate Microsoft for no apparent reason, other than that it's more successful than Apple - the jewel in Dilger's eye.

I first heard of Dilger when hundreds of Diggers in September Dugg a story about how recently announced iTV would change television. My first reaction was, Huh? Would a box with mysterious features really conquer the tube, which we all know to be the gospel? I wasn't very impressed by his article - no more so than I was with Mr. Dilger, who goes by Daniel Eran on his blog. (Eran is his middle name.) For some reason, one guy was calling himself a magazine. (Does that mean I'm a magazine, too? I have a blog!)

What astounded me was Dilger's absolute awe in able Apple's apposition. To Mr. Dilger, Apple is the gospel, the ultimate revelation. Dilger's series of essays on the iTV were speculative at best and unfounded at worst. To be fair, plenty of his other essays have some semblance of fact or solid base, but I did not see anything decent in my first impression. Practically every one of his entries mentions Microsoft - usually in ridicule. While the company undoubtedly deserves a number of lashes, Mr. Dilger seems to attack Microsoft for doing anything at all. It's sort of like beating a dead cow. He's even criticized Microsoft for building the Zune with a screen bigger than the iPod's. Mr. Dilger is at war with Microsoft, or so it seems.

One of his more questionable claims is that success of the Xbox 360 is a myth - an illusion of football players, guns, magic, and sorcery. Apparently selling 8 million units in one year is disappointing. The PS2 sold more units: Three million more! But Dilger doesn't quite seem to understand the console market: Note that last year, Sony sold 20 million PS2 units worldwide. (I'm using his source, from PC vs. Console.) With the arrival of the PS3, is has all but looked like the end of the PS2's life cycle: The Xbox 360 has been on the market for one year, and the PS2 six. The PS2 is an established brand with tons of games. The Xbox 360? One year, definitely not as many games. The reputation of a six-year-old console will bulldoze a newbie. In 2007, we'll see a lot more sales of the Xbox 360, with the arrival of Xbox 360 exclusives and other big wig games. Year two will be big for the Xbox 360, and the next three years will see plenty of Xbox 360 sales. Video game consoles have life cycles of five to six years: The PS2 came out in 2000, and the PS3 2006; the Xbox came out in 2001, and the Xbox 360 2005 (an unusually short lifespan of four years). Also, is it just me, or did Dilger compare a game console to a portable music player? That really doesn't make much sense at all.

But aside from the content, I tend to view Dilger negatively, because it seems someone has been gaming Digg. A Digger even compiled a list of likely fake users, controlled by a real person to artificially inflate the Digg count for Dilger articles. Furthermore, at some point in late November or early December, the Digg team blocked stories originating from Dilger cried foul and for a short time appended each of his blog entries with a short, sordid tale of special interest groups like Microsoft paying Digg to censor Mr. Dilger. Excuse me if a claim like that doesn't raise his credibility. (All those appendices are gone, but they were amusing for a week or two.) Daniel Eran then moved to He subsequently started reviewing his own essays, giving them favorable ratings without fail. Integrity, shmegrity. That sure puts to rest any doubts that at one point or another, Dilger was indeed Digging his own stories under different pseudonyms.

I don't like Daniel Dilger. I'm not fond of any fanboys, but Dilger takes the cake as the biggest Apple fanboy with the least amount of integrity. To my knowledge, Dilger has never admitted to Digging his own stories, but it seems pretty certain that he did it.

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