On iCloud

Exciting news from northern California yesterday.  The "iTunes Match" service and OS X Lion pricing were a real surprise, as was iMessaging and various other features of the upcoming iOS 5.  Lion pricing had been suggested recently, but I think "$29 for all the computers that use your iTunes account" is even more aggressive than anyone expected.

Some questions and observations:
  • The MobileMe suite should've been free for a long time.  I started paying for it a few years ago, when Gmail and Google Apps couldn't handle contact and calendar syncing very well; but for awhile now it's been hard for me to convince home users and sole proprietors that they should pay $100/year for something that could be accomplished for free (and very easily) with a Google account and Xmarks. 
  • Which brings me to my first question:  whither bookmark syncing in iCloud?  There's no mention of it anywhere, as far as I can tell, in any of the iCloud press materials.  I haven't viewed the 2-hour keynote stream yet, and maybe there was a passing reference to it there...I realize this was a very minor feature of MobileMe, and I assume it's not getting dropped, but I'd love to know for sure.
  • I am loath to say this out loud, but I think John Gruber is wrong on this.  Maybe a more optimistic way to put it is that he was a little imprecise.  Jobs seems to have made it clear, as do the published materials, that the personal computer is still the authoritative/complete data store.  iCloud has simply replaced the computer as the hub of all this information.  I suspect that in 1-5 years iCloud will also become the authoritative repository of the data itself, but for now your computer will still hold your tens of thousands of photos that constitute your complete photo library, and your tens of thousands of songs.  This is why an average grandparent can probably survive without a computer now, and stay connected to the family with an iPad (relatives pushing photo streams to the device), but the average American Parent (every moment is a photo op) probably can't.
  • During the keynote, Jobs kept mentioning that iCloud could manage "up to 20,000 songs" from your library, and I was nervous.  Then the website pegged the limit at 25,000 songs, which was only a minor relief:  my library currently has 24,642 songs.  This means I have to consider another factor besides price when deciding whether or not I should buy, for example, 99 Extremely Essential Gregorian Chants for $2.  I am also curious about the annual subscription, and what happens if I cancel after a year.  Obviously, I lose cloud-based access to all the music; but did my "upgraded to 256kbps" songs ever get transferred down to my computer?  I suspect the answer is no, but I will be looking for details on that, especially because I'd love a way to keep multiple computers' iTunes libraries in sync.  There have been third-party solutions for this, but the ones I've tried don't quite cut it, and the real problem I have is keeping two iMacs on different LANs in sync.  Also, I'd love a way to manage playlists across computers.  Without Mac-to-Mac syncing, the service is of little value to me since WiFi sync is coming at the same time.
These are the highlights after a few hours of rumination.  E-mail me if you think I'm missing anything.