Simplicity and Clarity by Design

MobileMe Mail Error

Here we go again. Software Update just notified me that “.mac is now MobileMe” and that an update to Mac OS X was available. Being a masochist I went ahead and ran the update. Everything went smoothly for the most part. I was even able to connect to MobileMe Mail using Safari. I logged in successfully and started poking around the web interface. Guess what….

Yup, once again Apple’s servers are not up to the task. Here is the message I was greeted with shortly after the initial user interface was displayed in the browser window:

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Apple builds some killer hardware, a great desktop OS, a great music device, some excellent applications, and a really cool phone. They just don’t seem to be able to get server computing right though.

I’m not sure if it’s that they don’t allocate sufficient engineering resources to the problems, or if their data centers are under-powered or what, but these problems just aren’t acceptable. This isn’t new territority. Companies in the on-line space such as Google, Amazon, eBay and AOL have been doing this for years. Building scalable, robust server farms that can handle the kind of load .mac subscribers (oops, I meant MobileMe) exert on the infrastructure just isn’t rocket science.

The new user interface in MobileMe looks promising. I just want it to work reliably and to always be there when I need it.

Come on Apple. You make great XServe servers. Throw more of them at the problem if it’s just a resource issue. Looking at the growth of Apple stock share prices, the increased sales of Mac desktop and notebook computers, and the insanely successful iPhone I think you can afford to hire some top-gun server developers if what you need is more engineering talent to correct this problem.

Please, make MobileMe something everyone loves and can’t live without. Show the rest of the on-line world you mean business here!