Christina Warren

Christina Warren: Senior Tech Analyst at Mashable. Lover of film, media and technology. I have opinions.

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The Genius of Kanye West

David Samuels has penned an incredible feature and profile about Kanye West for The Atlantic, perfectly titled “American Mozart.”

It’s an amazing bit of culture writing serving not just as an extended review of the Watch The Throne tour and the diametric artistry employed by West and Jay-Z, but by also zeroing in on exactly what makes Kanye such a genius.

That Kanye West is a musical genius is not new; it’s been accepted as fact since 2004’s The College Dropout. Still, assertions of that genius almost always accompany caveats about his attitude and his public behavior. Yeah, Kanye’s a genius – but he’s also an asshole. Or as President Obama is quoted in the article, “He is a jackass. But he’s talented.”

That caveat is absolutely well deserved but it too often acts to minimize that genius.

While Samuels acknowledges the personality issue – in fact, it’s a core tenant in his article

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Please Don’t Ruin Instagram

My more measured op-ed after my InstaEmo fit this morning.

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Facebook and Instagram

Dammit.

Just…dammit.

These things always start out with the best intentions but unless you’re Amazon and Zappos they never pan out the way you want.

To be clear – I’m totally happy for the Instagram team – they deserve the success they’ve found tenfold. I just wish it wasn’t Facebook…because no matter how much you say,

It’s important to be clear that Instagram is not going away. We’l be working with Facebook to evolve Instagram and build the network. We’ll continue to add new features to the product and find new ways to create a better mobile photos experience.

The Instagram app will still be the same one you know and love. You’ll still have all the same people you follow and that follow you.You’ll still be able to share to other social networks. And you’ll still have all the other features that make the app so fun and unique.

We’re psyched to be joining Facebook and are excited to

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Unsinkable: The Titanic and Tennis

With the 100th Anniversary of the sinking of Titanic, we’re seeing renewed interest in re-publishing or re-telling the stories behind that famous ship. If you are going to read anything, read this excellent article in Sports Illustrated.

The whole story, which is about tennis as much as it is Titanic, is utterly fascinating, but this part really got me:

Dick and Charles Williams walked the deck. They tried to stay warm by riding stationary bikes in the exercise room. Finally, as the letters of the ship’s name on the bow were about to slip underwater, they decided to abandon ship. They stood near the rail, an infirm man and his only child, and said their goodbyes. As they were speaking, one of the ship’s enormous smokestacks came crashing down. Dick darted out of the way. Charles was crushed, instantly killed. At that point Dick jumped into the ocean. In 28º water, swathed in a raccoon

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Flashback Check for Regular People

Update: So we’re now at 34,000 downloads and counting.

Some of the news today has been about a nasty trojan targeted at Mac users that has apparently infected 600,000 machines.

While most of these infestations probably occurred in September or October (when the trojan first hit), Apple didn’t actually patch its version of Java until this week.

Surprisingly, the schadenfreude from the anti-Mac users has been less than I’ve seen in the past. The lack of “see, Macs aren’t that secure” comments I’m seeing are kind of eerie, to be honest.

However, as a Mac enthusiast and a person who is often the most tech savvy person in her circle of friends, family and co-workers, I was faced with a dilemma: How to make it easy for people to check to see if their computers were safe, without having to force them to use Terminal.

For lots of people, Terminal is a scary place and users just don’t want

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WordPress 3.4 Beta 1

It’s a few weeks behind schedule, but the first beta for the next major WordPress update is now out.

It might seem odd that I’m blogging about this now that I’ve effectively left WordPress (though as I said last night, I do plan on re-designing my site to act as a portfolio of sorts, and chances are I’ll probably use WordPress for that task), but old habits die hard.

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Sprint Gets its LTE On

I had an upset stomach earlier today so I skipped tonight’s HTC/Sprint event. I’m only disappointed because this meant I couldn’t grill the Sprint people on their LTE timetable.

Look, I’m glad Dan Hesse and his creepy commercials are finally getting religion and giving up on WiMax, the last thing we needed was another GSM/CDMA 3G debate…the 4G lingo is hard enough to decipher.

From Pete Pachal’s post at Mashable

Sprint so far hasn’t deployed a high-speed LTE network, and it didn’t announce an official launch at this evening’s event. But the frequencies are settled, the chips are ready and the network will begin rollout later this year (first in Texas, Atlanta, and Baltimore). The Evo 4G LTE will be ready for that network when it arrives.

Still, I can’t help but think pre-announcing a phone before you even tell us when you’re rolling out the network is stupid.

I was at CES 2011 when

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Svbtly

TL;DR: I’m joining Svbtle. It will be my new home for my personal thoughts, rants and attempts to wax quixotic about the next big thing. The domain, which I’ve owned for nearly three years, is perfect for this project because this is just me.

 Five Years Later

On March 12, 2007, I officially became a professional writer.

After toiling in obscurity (I jest), my commentary about American Idol was published on a weekly basis in the print edition of USA Today and on the “Idol Chatter” blog. I got the job – alongside a panel of music-industry experts – because I was a prolific commenter on USA Today’s music and Idol blogs. I was young, they wanted young, and I had opinions.

At that time in my life, getting a freelance gig at USA Today was a big deal. At 24, I was unsure of what I wanted to do with my life or what direction to take. Five years later, my life is completely different in

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