Apple has long boasted of its culture of innovation, and how this led to such products as the original Mac and the iPod. However, it turns out that, at least in the case of the iPod, Apple had a hidden ally: the US government. During a speech at Tuskegee University, President (and iPod user
) George W. Bush told his audience, "the government funded research in microdrive storage, electrochemistry and signal compression. They did so for one reason: It turned out that those were the key ingredients for the development of the iPod." While we have to gratefully acknowledge the efforts of government agencies such as DARPA in some of the fields mentioned by the President, we also feel obligated to point out the accomplishments of private companies in the US and abroad, including IBM, Hitachi and Toshiba -- not to mention the Fraunhofer Institute, which developed the original MP3 codec, and codeveloped (with Sony, AT&T and others) the AAC format used by Apple in the iPod. Still, we have to bow down before his Steveness; we knew he was well-connected, but until now we had no idea of his level of influence in the area of government research. Hey, Steve, while you're at it, why not get the government to resolve the display problems
plaguing the next-gen video iPod? We're sure they'll get their best minds on it and fix it in no time.