"According to Nokia’s Q1 results for 2012, the vendor estimates that the current annual IPR royalty under its smart phone and mobile devices business unit income run-rate is approximately €0.5 billion.Nokia still has a patent business • The Register
It is unclear how much if these royalties are coming directly from the ongoing spoils of Nokia’s victory with Apple last June, but it would be assumed the lion’s share would be Apple derived."
Monday, April 30, 2012
"Samsung no longer needs Google. It can build its own version of Android, just like Amazon, and have complete control over the operating system. This way it wouldn't have to deal with Google and its onerous terms.Google Is On The Cusp Of Losing Control Of Android - Business Insider
We don't know if Samsung will "fork" Android, but it would be a smart thing to do. Google is about to own Motorola. If you were Samsung, would you trust that Google isn't going to work closely with Motorola to build the best possible Android experience and screw you over? No way."
tbd how much of this deal is about intellectual property, but I suspect Amazon’s patent team will be busy today
“Barnes & Noble shareholders just woke up this morning to find they'd won the lottery.
Shares are surging 80% today on news that Microsoft is investing $300 million into a JV with the company.”
Barnes & Noble and Microsoft Form Strategic Partnership to Advance World-Class Digital Reading Experiences for Consumers [Microsoft PressPass]
"The new subsidiary, referred to in this release as Newco, will bring together the digital and College businesses of Barnes & Noble. Microsoft will make a $300 million investment in Newco at a post-money valuation of $1.7 billion in exchange for an approximately 17.6% equity stake. Barnes & Noble will own approximately 82.4% of the new subsidiary, which will have an ongoing relationship with the company’s retail stores. Barnes & Noble has not yet decided on the name of Newco.
One of the first benefits for customers will be a NOOK application for Windows 8, which will extend the reach of Barnes & Noble’s digital bookstore by providing one of the world’s largest digital catalogues of e-Books, magazines and newspapers to hundreds of millions of Windows customers in the U.S. and internationally.
Barnes & Noble and Microsoft have settled their patent litigation, and moving forward, Barnes & Noble and Newco will have a royalty-bearing license under Microsoft’s patents for its NOOK eReader and Tablet products. This paves the way for both companies to collaborate and reach a broader set of customers."Barnes & Noble and Microsoft Form Strategic Partnership to Advance World-Class Digital Reading Experiences for Consumers
"Moskovitz and his friend Justin Rosenstein, a former Facebooker himself worth $150 million, head a company called Asana, which just launched the first paid version of its online project management service. During a recent interview at their inconspicuous Mission District offices, the pair said they come to work every day because, their fortunes already made, they still have to do something with their lives.Facebook billionaire shuns luxury for startup life | Business & Technology | The Seattle Times
"When we think of work, we think of work as an act of service, as an act of love for humanity," said Rosenstein, 28.
Added Moskovitz: "If we were just retired, we wouldn't be serving anyone.""
Jean-Louis Gassée on the Apple = Sony perspective; he and George Colony appear to agree on only one thing: Sony = toast
“Mr. Colony, an influential iPad fan, maintains a well-written blog titled The Counterintuitive CEO in which he shares his thoughts on events such as the Davos Forum, trends in Web technology and usage, and, in a brief homage, his hope that “Steve’s lessons will bring about a better world”.
We now turn to his April 25th post, Apple = Sony.
There are two problems with the piece: The application of a turgid, 100-year old “typology of organizations” that’s hardly relevant to today’s business scene, and an amazingly wrong-headed view of Sony and its founder, Akio Morita.”
"The full version draws a portrait of a company where an engineer can easily embark on a project to gather personal e-mails and Web searches of potentially hundreds of millions of people as part of his or her unscheduled work time, and where privacy concerns are shrugged off.Google Engineer Told Others of Data Collection, F.C.C. Report Reveals - NYTimes.com
The so-called payload data was secretly collected between 2007 and 2010 as part of Street View, a project to photograph streetscapes over much of the civilized world. When the program was being designed, the report says, it included the following “to do” item: “Discuss privacy considerations with Product Counsel.”
“That never occurred,” the report says."
Sunday, April 29, 2012
Must have a lot of pockets
“"Just for looks and beauty, I definitely favor the Windows Phone over Android," Wozniak told host Dan Patterson in an interview with aNewDomain.net. "I'm shocked. Every screen is much more beautiful than the same apps on Android and iPhone."
The audio interview, which is getting lots of buzz on tech blogs today, is posted at aNewDomain.net, which notes that gadget lover Wozniak carries two Apple iPhone 4S handsets, a Motorola Droid Razr and a Nokia Lumia running Windows Phone 7.5.”
"Android is in steep decline in the workplace, according to an analysis by Good Technology, a major information technology firm that provides software for about 3,000 businesses to manage Android and iOS devices.Android Is Failing to Get Into Businesses as iPhone and iPad Do - NYTimes.com
The company said that from tracking device activations among clients using Good’s software, it saw that 73.9 percent of smartphones in use were iPhones and 26.1 percent were Android devices. The iPhone’s share is up from 62.3 percent in the similar period last year and Android is down from 37.7 percent.
The numbers for tablets are even uglier for Android, partly because they haven’t changed from last year. The iPad accounted for 97.3 percent of tablet activations for the quarter, compared to 2.7 percent for Android."
Friday, April 27, 2012
"Johannes Gutenberg was our first geek, the original technology entrepreneur, who had to grapple with all the challenges a Silicon Valley startup faces today. Jeff Jarvis tells Gutenberg's story from an entrepreneurial perspective, examining how he overcame technology hurdles, how he operated with the secrecy of a Steve Jobs but then shifted to openness, how he raised capital and mitigated risk, and how, in the end, his cash flow and equity structure did him in. This is also the inspiring story of a great disruptor. That is what makes Gutenberg the patron saint of entrepreneurs.Gutenberg the Geek (Kindle Single): Jeff Jarvis: Amazon.com: Kindle Store
Jeff Jarvis is the author of "Public Parts: How Sharing in the Digital Age Improves the Way We Work and Live" and "What Would Google Do?: Reverse-Engineering the Fastest Growing Company in the History of the World." He directs the Tow-Knight Center for Entrepreneurial Journalism at the City University of New York Graduate School of Journalism. Jarvis blogs at Buzzmachine.com and writes for the Guardian."
"Any new features that you can already share which are coming to Evernote?(BTW in case you're wondering how I found my way to the Dutch Cowboys site, I found it via tracking #evernote on Twitter; I'm also finding lots of useful resources via Techmeme, Google News, and LinkedIn these days)
We're working on a lot of new functionality right now. In addition to the productivity features I mentioned above, we're greatly improving our sharing and collaboration capabilities, adding support for business accounts, and revamping the whole UX. We're also making Evernote much more intelligent. Our goal is to make the experience of using Evernote feel like it's completing your thoughts.
Of course, we can only build a small fraction of the perfect "second brain" by ourselves, so we rely on our developer community to create great things with the Evernote API. In fact, we just launched Devcup, our big new competition for developers: if you have any cool ideas for Evernote functionality or integrations, check out dev.evernote.com to get started."
Interview met Phil Libin, CEO Evernote
"Evernote CEO Phil Libin took the stage at The Next Web Conference earlier today.
We took notes and will have a longer post for you later on, but here are some interesting tidbits about Evernote that Libin shared at the end of his talk.
The affable chief executive said Evernote currently boasts over 25 million registered users, and is in fact closing in on reaching 30 million.
Last number we heard was 20 million in December 2011, so things are obviously moving fast for Evernote.
After 4 years, more than 25% of users pay for the service today."(I assume the final quote above means that, at this point, > 25% of Evernote users who have been using the service for 4 years opt to pay for a premium subscription)
Evernote Is Approaching 30 Million Users
"Amazon's Kindle Fire now makes up the absolute majority of the Android tablet platform in the US, comScore found in a fresh study. The e-reader and tablet crossover represented 54.4 percent of all Android tablets sold in the country. At second place, the entire Samsung Galaxy Tab lineup comprised just 15.4 percent of Android slates.comScore: Amazon Kindle Fire is 54.4% of US Android tablets | Electronista
No other manufacturer got above 10 percent, with Google's reference tablet, the Motorola Xoom, stopping at seven percent. Despite its size as a company, Sony only netted 0.7 percent for the Tablet S."
I’d be psyched to see Samsung build on this market momentum by partnering with Amazon to deliver a Samsung tablet-based Kindle Fire 2.0 (with Swype and a built-in stylus, please…)
“Samsung's growth is coming from its Galaxy models, among other products. "Samsung's global smartphone shipments rose 253 percent annually...as demand surged for its popular Galaxy models such as the Note, S2 and Y," Strategy Analytics said.
(Credit: Strategy Analytics)”
"ZTE and HTC (HTCXF)are both reportedly planning large smartphones that double as small tablets, with at least one of the two expected to include a stylus with the device. The idea is to compete against Samsung’s (SSNLF)Galaxy Note, a 5.3-inch Android smartphone with a digital pen, even though many have suggested consumers want neither a stylus with their phone nor a very large handset."Why ZTE and HTC May Follow Samsung Into Styluses - Businessweek
"A couple details worth noting:A Massive Beat for Amazon - John Paczkowski - News - AllThingsD
- Kindle Fire remains the #1 bestselling, most gifted, and most wished for product Amazon offers.
- 9 out of 10 top sellers on Amazon.com were digital products, I.E.: Kindle, Kindle books, movies, music and apps
- Worldwide Media sales grew 19 percent to $4.71 billion."
"“It’s a watershed moment when you hire someone like this,” said David Wales, a former Fed-eral Trade Commission official now in private practice with Jones Day. “This shows Google that if it doesn’t give you the remedy you want, you’re going to litigate.”F.T.C. Hires an Outside Litigator in Google Case - NYTimes.com
Several antitrust experts compared the hiring of Ms. Wilkinson — who has brought about 40 major cases in government and private practice and won them all — to the government’s hiring of David A. Boies to represent it against Microsoft."
"Taking the stand during the ongoing court battle between Google and Oracle over the use of the Java programming language on Google’s Android mobile operating system, Jonathan Schwartz — the former CEO of Sun Microsystems, the creator of Java — said that Java has always been free to use and that although Sun didn’t necessarily like the way Android used Java, it had no intention of stopping it.Ex-Sun Boss Defends Google's Right to Java on Android | Wired Enterprise | Wired.com
“We wanted to build the biggest tent and invite as many people as possible,” Schwartz said of the Java platform."
Thursday, April 26, 2012
“Amid the excitement over Google Drive, the search giant's new Dropbox competitor, Microsoft recently improved a similar online sync and storage service, SkyDrive. Microsoft added the ability to store files online and sync across multiple devices right from your Windows or OS X desktop. That puts SkyDrive squarely in competition with Dropbox and Drive, five years after Microsoft first introduced its online storage solution in 2007.5 Reasons Microsoft SkyDrive is Better Than Google Drive | PCWorld
If you're looking for a new service to sync and store files across multiple devices and the cloud, you should give SkyDrive a serious look. Not only do you get more free storage, but you'll also have an easier time managing online documents and you get free remote access to your home PC while you're on the go. Google Drive may be the current media darling, but for people just looking to get some work done here's why you should give SkyDrive a try.”
"Tuesday's introduction of Google Drive is more a revamp of Google Docs than it is a brand new service. Essentially, Google is rebranding Google Docs to Google Drive, and modifying its user interface to suit a bunch of new features.Google Drive: Hands-On Winner - The BrainYard - InformationWeek
Docs already lets users create documents, spreadsheets, and other files. Those files could be edited, shared, downloaded, uploaded, and so on. None of that has changed, only now Docs, er, Drive users have a minimum of 5 GB of storage of which to make use. There are a few key differences, however, that dramatically improve the usefulness of the whole shebang."
"Like Apple and Microsoft, Gartenberg noted that Google has a relationship with a millions of consumers who use its Gmail, Google Docs, Chrome web browser and any number of other applications. Because of those existing relationships, Google has an advantage in being able woo existing customers over to its new storage and synchronization service.Can Dropbox, other cloud providers survive Google Drive? - Computerworld
While Google Drive will no doubt compete with Microsoft's SkyDrive and Apple's iCloud, the companies more at risk are smaller specialized service providers, such as DropBox, Box, SugarSync and YouSendIt. Those sites have appealed more to technology enthusiasts, not average consumers. And, when it comes to adoption, relationships matter."
More patent poker posturing at the article link below
“During the Oracle v. Google trial, the value of theAndroid platform to the Internet giant has been a subject of inquiry. When Google CEO and co-founder Larry Page was asked last week by Oracle's attorney David Boies about the value of Android, he responded that Android is "important, but not critical."
On Wednesday, Google's head of the Android platform, Andy Rubin, was asked by Boies what purpose Android serves for Google, He responded that it "makes it easier to access Google services." “
Microsoft Inks Another Android Patent Deal, Says 70 Percent of Devices - Ina Fried - Mobile - AllThingsD
tbd if Microsoft makes more money from Android than, e.g., Windows Phone
“Microsoft on Wednesday said it had signed a patent licensing deal with Taiwan’s Pegatron, covering any Android devices it produces. With this latest deal, Microsoft said it now has pacts with four of the top five Taiwanese contract manufacturers, covering more than 70 percent of all U.S. Android devices.”
Wednesday, April 25, 2012
"When Steve Jobs departed, he took three things with him: 1) singular charismatic leadership that bound the company together and elicited extraordinary performance from its people; 2) the ability to take big risks, and 3) an unparalleled ability to envision and design products. Apple's momentum will carry it for 24-48 months. But without the arrival of a new charismatic leader it will move from being a great company to being a good company, with a commensurate step down in revenue growth and product innovation. Like Sony (post Morita), Polaroid (post Land), Apple circa 1985 (post Jobs), and Disney (in the 20 years post Walt Disney), Apple will coast, and then decelerate. "Apple = Sony | Forrester Blogs
Google Drive vs. Dropbox, SkyDrive, SugarSync, and others: a cloud sync storage face-off | The Verge
Check the article link below for a detailed comparison (the image below is a clip of a much larger table)
"A blog post written by former Sun CEO Jonathan Schwartz (pictured) has come into play in a tense courtroom this morning.How a 5-year-old blog post might turn the tide in Oracle v. Google Android case | VentureBeat
In Oracle’s ongoing lawsuit against Google, Judge William Alsup has allowed Google to use as evidence a particularly telling post from 2007 — a post that Oracle had already carefully scrubbed off the Internet and tried to exclude from the trial.
Oracle is suing Google over Android, claiming that Google had no right or permission to use the Oracle/Sun-owned Java programming language in the Google-owned Android operating system.
However, as Android was launching many years ago, Schwartz (who led Sun before it was acquired by Oracle in 2010), wrote an extremely positive blog post about Java’s use in Android."
Another take on cloud storage-centric services; Doxo caters to organizations seeking to securely share information with their customers and, unsurprisingly, is built on AWS
Seattle online bill-paying startup Doxo is announcing some big, new customers - including the state of Washington.
Doxo, which is backed by Amazon.com Chief Executive Jeff Bezos' personal investment firm, is also announcing that 16 counties and municipalities in the state have agreed to use Doxo for digital delivery of documents and online bill payments.
A Doxo spokeswoman said it's working with the state Department of Enterprise Services that handles electronic delivery of documents for state agencies.
"Are there features missing from Google Drive?The Google Drive FAQ | Internet & Media - CNET News
Updated Google only lets you synchronize files and folders placed in the Google Drive folder. The iOS apps aren't out yet and there's no news of versions for Windows Phones or Blackberry. (Versions for Linux and for the Chrome OS that's on the Chromebooks are in the works, though.) Google Drive doesn't copy your Google Docs data to your computer, so you cannot access those files when offline. Also, it does not appear that Google Drive is available yet for users of business-class Google Apps accounts."
"Aaron Levie, CEO of closely held Box, which was founded in 2005 and focuses on corporate customers, said in a statement that sales to businesses "simply isn't in Google's DNA, and we will continue to be laser-focused on building the simplest, most secure, and scalable way businesses can store and share data in the cloud.""Google Unveils Drive Online Storage Service - WSJ.com
"During the call, Mr. Cook gave his strongest public hint yet that he'd be willing to settle the sprawling legal battles started by his predecessor Steve Jobs. "I've always hated litigation and I continue to hate it," he said. Apple and Samsung recently agreed to enter settlement talks in a California patent case.Apple Profit Surges 94% on Strong iPhone, iPad Sales - WSJ.com
Mr. Cook also brushed off some competitors' approaches. When asked about whether Apple's tablets and laptops might converge—a model Microsoft is pushing with Windows 8—he said: "You can converge a toaster and a refrigerator, but those things are probably not going to be pleasing to the user.""
"Mr. Cook said that Apple’s quarterly revenue from China was $7.9 billion, about 20 percent of total company revenue. Furthermore, that was triple Apple’s China sales in the same period a year ago. In contrast, Apple’s China sales during its last fiscal year were about 12 percent of total revenue. Two years ago, Apple sales in China were 2 percent.Apple’s Profit Nearly Doubles as iPhones Sales Soar - NYTimes.com
“China has grown from a rounding error to a massive new market,” said Robert Cihra, an analyst at Evercore Partners. “Their premium price point clearly has not been any hurdle to them growing there.”"
"For years, some people who wanted to store files on remote servers in the cloud have been emailing the files to their Gmail accounts, or uploading them to Google’s lightly used Google Docs online productivity suite, even if they had no intention of editing them there.Google Stores, Syncs, Edits in the Cloud - Walt Mossberg - Personal Technology - AllThingsD
Now, Google is formally jumping into the cloud-based file storage and syncing business, offering a service called Google Drive, which will compete with products like Dropbox and others by offering lower prices and different features. It works on multiple operating systems, browsers and mobile devices, including those of Google’s competitors Apple and Microsoft. There are apps for Windows, Mac and mobile devices that automatically sync files with Google Drive."
““We’re thrilled with sales of over 35 million iPhones and almost 12 million iPads in the March quarter,” Apple CEO Tim Cook said in a statement. “The new iPad is off to a great start, and across the year you’re going to see a lot more of the kind of innovation that only Apple can deliver.”Apple Beats Analyst Estimates for Frist-Quarter Earnings - John Paczkowski - News - AllThingsD
Guidance for the June quarter is a bit lower than expected with EPS of $8.68 on $34 billion in revenue as opposed to the $9.92 on $37.4 billion expected by analysts, but Apple’s guidance is typically comically low.”
Sundar Pichai: Google Drive Is About Context, Competitors About Files - Liz Gannes - News - AllThingsD
"No matter what you say or launch, the takeaway is going to be, “Google launches Dropbox competitor.” What do you make of the competitive landscape?Sundar Pichai: Google Drive Is About Context, Competitors About Files - Liz Gannes - News - AllThingsD
Pichai: I think if we wanted to do it, we would have approached it very differently. We’ve gone to great lengths to built it around an online application experience. We want this to be about creating and collaborating — and your data is there for you. I think others have taken a file/data approach, and saying you have [access to] that everywhere. It’s nuanced, but I think it’s very different.
And for an active Google user, the integration we provide is very valuable. [As for Dropbox,] I think the work they’ve done is great. This is a secular shift in terms of how people are living in the cloud, and I think it’s good to have innovation in the space."
Tuesday, April 24, 2012
“With Google Drive, you can:http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2012/04/introducing-google-drive-yes-really.html#!/2012/04/introducing-google-drive-yes-really.html
- Create and collaborate. Google Docs is built right into Google Drive, so you can work with others in real time on documents, spreadsheets and presentations. Once you choose to share content with others, you can add and reply to comments on anything (PDF, image, video file, etc.) and receive notifications when other people comment on shared items.
- Store everything safely and access it anywhere (especially while on the go). All your stuff is just... there. You can access your stuff from anywhere—on the web, in your home, at the office, while running errands and from all of your devices. You can install Drive on your Mac or PC and can download the Drive app to your Android phone or tablet. We’re also working hard on a Drive app for your iOS devices. And regardless of platform, blind users can access Drive with a screen reader.
- Search everything. Search by keyword and filter by file type, owner and more. Drive can even recognize text in scanned documents using Optical Character Recognition (OCR) technology. Let’s say you upload a scanned image of an old newspaper clipping. You can search for a word from the text of the actual article. We also use image recognition so that if you drag and drop photos from your Grand Canyon trip into Drive, you can later search for [grand canyon] and photos of its gorges should pop up. This technology is still in its early stages, and we expect it to get better over time.”
"An International Trade Commission judge has issued an initial ruling today, saying Microsoft's Xbox gaming consoles infringe on some of Motorola's patents.ITC sides with Motorola in initial ruling on Xbox patent case | Microsoft Pri0 | The Seattle Times
ITC Administrative Law Judge David Shaw ruled that Microsoft violated four of five Motorola Mobility patent, according to Bloomberg, which also reported that Shaw's findings are subject to review by a six-member commission.
The final ruling is expected in August, according to Reuters.
Today's decision stems from a lawsuit Motorola filed against Microsoft with the ITC in November 2010. It is one of several lawsuits, spanning several cities worldwide, that the two companies have filed against each other, alleging patent infringement.
Motorola has asked the ITC to prohibit Microsoft from importing Xboxes into the U.S. from China, where they are manufactured."
"Instead of serving as a supplement to a desktop or laptop computer, the report said, these burgeoning cloud services will play such an integral role in the connected future that consumers will first choose a service, then the compatible device as the focus shifts from device to personal content storage services. And tablets such as iPad will become the conduit between consumers' digital devices such as smartphones and PC and the cloud-stored content.In digital future, the tablet and cloud storage are king - latimes.com
"Over the next four years, tablets will gain new sensors, processing power, and better wireless capabilities for connecting with nearby devices," wrote Frank Gillette, principal analyst on Forrester's business technology futures team. "This will enable full voice control and dictation, increased gesture control, more situational context, better accessory integration, and software that anticipates a user’s needs.""
"It is thought to have been a small asteroid that slammed into the atmosphere at a speed of 15 kilometers per second (33,500 mph), turning into a fireball, delivering an energy of 3.8 kilotons of TNT as it broke up over California's Sierra Nevada mountains. Bill Cooke, head of NASA's Meteoroid Environment Office, classified it as a "big event.""Asteroid the 'Size of a Minivan' Exploded Over California : Discovery News
Another smartphone market snapshot
“The two companies were the only major smartphone makers to gain share in the fourth quarter. Apple's market share reached 23.5%, up from 16% at the end of 2010. Samsung held 22.8% of the market in the same quarter, up from 9.4%.
In addition, Apple and Samsung combined to grab 91% of the operating profits of all cellphone makers in the fourth quarter, up from 61% last year, according to Strategy Analytics, a London-based market research firm.
"At this stage, it does look like these two are pulling away," said Manish Nigam, a technology analyst at Credit Suisse in Hong Kong.”
Another market segment in transition
“The days when IE completely dominated the browser landscape are long gone. Microsoft’s browser still has a big chunk of the market, but much less so in some regions than others. It has lost its lead in Europe, Asia, Africa and South America, but remains dominant in North America and Oceania (consisting primarily of Australia).”
From a stark Windows Phone reality check
“Microsoft ruled the PC market for decades with utter dominance. But today, as the future shifts toward mobile devices, things are not looking good for Microsoft. It's not that it's not trying: Microsoft is spending a lot of money and effort on cracking the mobile market, now in lockstep with Nokia, its top partner. But there's no indication yet that it's having any real success.”
"If the Ivy League was the breeding ground for the élites of the American Century, Stanford is the farm system for Silicon Valley. When looking for engineers, Schmidt said, Google starts at Stanford. Five per cent of Google employees are Stanford graduates. The president of Stanford, John L. Hennessy, is a director of Google; he is also a director of Cisco Systems and a successful former entrepreneur. Stanford’s Office of Technology Licensing has licensed eight thousand campus-inspired inventions, and has generated $1.3 billion in royalties for the university. Stanford’s public-relations arm proclaims that five thousand companies “trace their origins to Stanford ideas or to Stanford faculty and students.” They include Hewlett-Packard, Yahoo, Cisco Systems, Sun Microsystems, eBay, Netflix, Electronic Arts, Intuit, Fairchild Semiconductor, Agilent Technologies, Silicon Graphics, LinkedIn, and E*Trade."Is Stanford Too Close to Silicon Valley? : The New Yorker
Making personal cloud storage for Windows available anywhere, with the new SkyDrive - Building Windows 8 - Site Home - MSDN Blogs
Coincidentally, Google Drive is expected to launch today
“Today, we’re excited to take another big step towards our vision by making SkyDrive far more powerful. There are new storage options, apps that connect your devices to SkyDrive, and a more powerful device cloud that lets you “fetch” any file from a Windows PC. Taken together with access from popular mobile phones and a browser, you can now take your SkyDrive with you anywhere, connect it to any app that works with files and folders, and get all the storage you need—making SkyDrive the most powerful personal cloud storage service available.
Here’s what’s available for use, starting now:
- SkyDrive for the Windows desktop (preview available now). View and manage your personal SkyDrive directly from Windows Explorer on Windows 8, Windows 7, and Windows Vista with this new preview app available in 106 languages worldwide.
- Fetching files through SkyDrive.com. Easily access, browse, and stream files from a remote PC running the preview app to just about anywhere by simply fetching them via SkyDrive.com.
- SkyDrive storage updates. A new, more flexible approach to personal cloud storage that allows power users to get additional paid storage as their needs grow.
- SkyDrive for other devices. We’ve updated the SkyDrive apps on Windows Phone and iOS devices, bringing better management features and sharing options to those devices. We’re also releasing a new preview client for Mac OS X Lion, letting you manage your SkyDrive right from the Finder.”
"That Microsoft bought the shell of Netscape when it purchased 800 patents from AOL was weird enough. Netscape was the biggest fly in Microsoft’s eye during its anti-trust battles.Facebook Reunites Netscape and Marc Andreessen - Deal Journal - WSJ
But now that Facebook has bought the patents, they are back near the safe hands of Marc Andreessen’s, the co-founder of Netscape.
Andreessen made his fortune on Netscape and is now a dean among the young pups of the Tech 2.0 rise, most notably Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. The venture capitalist has been on Facebook’s board since 2008 and his fund, Andreessen Horowitz, is in for a windfall from the upcoming Facebook IPO."
"The company's profit in the three months that ended March 31 was $205 million, down 32% from the fourth quarter of 2011, and also down 12% from a year earlier. Revenue, though down from the previous quarter, was up 45% from a year earlier.Facebook's Growth Slows - WSJ.com
One yardstick that continues to reflect Facebook's meteoric rise is its monthly active user base, which totaled 901 million as of last month, up 33% from 680 million a year earlier. The company says it now has 488 million monthly users on mobile phones.
Still, Facebook's expenses nearly doubled in the first quarter to $677 million from $343 million a year earlier."
In Microsoft Patent Deal, Facebook Delivers Another Smackdown to Yahoo - Kara Swisher - News - AllThingsD
"But with the latest deal with Microsoft, it is clear that Facebook is more likely to continue its hard line against Yahoo and less likely to settle as quickly and pay up to get Yahoo’s patent portfolio, too.In Microsoft Patent Deal, Facebook Delivers Another Smackdown to Yahoo - Kara Swisher - News - AllThingsD
“They tried to shake us down,” said one person close to the situation. “And we don’t appreciate that.”
Not to be outdone, Yahoo took yet another oh-yeah tough stance today in a statement to me, after news of the Facebook-Microsoft deal was out:
“Nothing about today’s action changes the fact that Facebook continues to infringe our patents. Companies who purchase patents are often working from a position of weakness and take these actions to strengthen their portfolio. We see today’s announcement as a validation of our case against Facebook.”"
"A near-final “release preview” version of Windows 8 is due in the first week of June, Microsoft confirmed late Monday.Near-Final Version of Windows 8 Due in Early June - Ina Fried - News - AllThingsD
Windows unit President Steven Sinofsky made the announcement at a Windows Developer Days event in Japan.
The release preview follows two earlier test releases, including a “consumer preview” version issued in February.
Although Microsoft hasn’t confirmed a release date for the final version of Windows 8, it is widely expected to be released in time to arrive on PCs this fall."
Monday, April 23, 2012
"Earlier this month, Microsoft spent more than $1 billion to buy roughly 800 patents from AOL, and it's now selling the majority of them to Facebook. Facebook is buying about 650 AOL patents and patent applications, and also gain a license to the 275 other patents and patent applications that Microsoft will continue to own.Facebook buys AOL patents from Microsoft for $550M | Internet & Media - CNET News
"Today's agreement with Facebook enables us to recoup over half of our costs while achieving our goals from the AOL auction," Brad Smith, executive vice president and general counsel, Microsoft said in a statement. "We had submitted the winning AOL bid in order to obtain a durable license to the full AOL portfolio and ownership of certain patents that complement our existing portfolio.""
In other hardware history, the Apple II was announced ~35 years ago
“More than five million copies of the various ZX Spectrum computers were sold over the family's eight year lifespan, not including third-party clones.
The ZX Spectrum is 30 years old. The successor to Sir Clive Sinclair's ZX81 - at the time the world's best selling consumer computer - it introduced colour "high resolution" graphics and sound.
It also offered an extended version of Sinclair Basic, a computer language with which hundreds of thousands of users were already familiar.”
"This morning I had cause to look at Tim Carmody's tweetstream. Man, that cat can tweet. Anyway, it got me thinking about whether you might be able to categorize social networks according to their resemblance to recreational drugs. If a sharing site were an abusable substance, which abusable substance would it be?Rough Type: Nicholas Carr's Blog: Social networks as recreational drugs
Here's my first cut:
Twitter = Black Beauties
[symptoms of abuse: hyperactivity; increased awareness of surroundings; increased interest in repetitive or normally boring activities; decreased appetite; decreased ability to sleep*]"
"Today, Nokia bleeds cash, its dumbphone business in a race to the bottom, and its plunge into the Microsoft ecosystem isn’t off to a good start. What’s next for the company? Can it turn itself around, and how?"Nokia: Three Big Problems | Monday Note
"You wouldn’t expect anybody at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to go looking for a less powerful computer. But there is an effort afoot at the university’s Sloan School of Management to move faculty and staff away from full-fledged desktop computers and onto dumber, network-based devices known as thin clients.At Sloan School, the PC may be a vanishing breed - Business - The Boston Globe
It’s part of a larger movement toward “cloud computing’’ - processing files and other software on large, shared server computers, reducing the need to pack a lot of processing horsepower into each user’s machine. Reminiscent of the “dumb terminals’’ used in early generations of computers, simple thin clients will connect keyboards and screens used by MIT scholars to Sloan’s online resources on all kinds of devices, even their personal smartphones and tablets."
Sunday, April 22, 2012
Not a pretty picture – and this is before the inevitable image copyright lawsuits
“After its growth slowed in March, it looks like photo-sharing/collecting site Pinterest is actually losing users in April.
Most Pinterest users sign-up to the site using their Facebook accounts, and AppData, which monitors how often users of third-party apps and Web sites interact with Facebook, says the number of Facebook-connected Pinterest users has declined precipitously the past 50 days.”
Not a great bargain
“Here's an unsettling fact for anyone thinking of buying shares in a newly public company: Even if its executives know their internal accounting systems are a wreck, they aren't required to disclose this until after the company goes public.
It's a lesson Groupon shareholders have learned the hard way. Groupon shares fell 17 percent April 2 after the online coupon company said it had identified a "material weakness" in its internal controls over financial reporting, as of Dec. 31.”
Friday, April 20, 2012
A timely 3:17 Google reality check
“Jon Stewart had quite a bit of fun at the expense of Google and Google+ last night, lampooning the FCC’s recent $25,000 fine against the company and joking that posting something on the search giant’s social network is a good way to keep it private.
“If you don’t want to tell anybody, you should just put that information on Google+,” he says.
On Marketing Land, Danny Sullivan has a full recap of the segment, which you can watch below.”
"Supporters of Ron Paul are chronically frustrated over an apparent lack of attention given to the presidential hopeful. One supporter is trying to fight the tide by creating a Web video game. "Ron Paul: Road to REVOLution," due later this summer, will illustrate his quest to for the White House in an interactive format.Ron Paul video game is in the works - Ingame on msnbc.com
The game is the brainchild of 27-year-old Daniel Williams, who aside from being a devotee of Ron Paul, is a fan of indie games, and "making liberty sexy." The combination of the three led to the idea for the "Ron Paul: Road to REVOLution," now being pitched on Kickstarter using the following video:"
"Google's insurgent attitude--perceiving startup funding as broken and appointing itself as the fixer--has ruffled some in the insular, clubby world of venture capital. Not on the record, of course. Google Ventures is already big enough that it has participated in deals with almost every prominent Valley investor, and nobody wants to talk ill of a partner. Behind the scenes, though, some question the firm's experience--most of its partners are former Googlers who haven't worked in venture capital before--and its passion. If you were looking for money and were choosing between Google Ventures and such top firms as Andreessen Horowitz or Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, people would tell you to go with one of the other guys.Google's Creative Destruction | Fast Company
Maris understands the skepticism. "If I'm an entrepreneur and I have a term sheet from Sequoia and Kleiner, that's the safe choice. Google Ventures is the brave choice." But Maris argues that won't be the case for long. "We're in the process of rethinking everything, from top to bottom, so that over time, Google Ventures becomes the safe choice.""
"Cisco has used this concept of spin-ins before and often they involved the same three founders — Mazzola, Jain, and Cafiero. However, when I read this memo, I see a company making a tactical admission that it has become so big, so bureaucratic and so broken that it cannot count on internal teams to build any ground breaking products. The SDN memo, at least from my perspective, sends the wrong message to Cisco’s engineering corps: you are worth more outside than you are inside Cisco.Cisco memo: We can’t build anything — Cloud Computing News
Cisco which has made a fortune from selling routers and switches should be thinking about developing next generation platforms. The fact it can’t shows that as a company it has become addicted to the old way of doing things."
"Changing the perception of Microsoft as a fusty software company will take time. That’s as true of professional designers as it is of consumers. “Microsoft doesn’t have a big presence in the student brain around design,” says Bill Burnett, executive director of the Design Program at Stanford University. He calls Metro an example “of Microsoft getting it right,” but adds that his students still think “Microsoft is so their parents’ company. They don’t have any Microsoft products in their life.”"Microsoft's Design Drive - Businessweek
"But consumers around the world are shunning basic Nokia phones and turning increasingly to cheap smartphones powered by Google Inc.'s Android software. One of those phone makers, Samsung Electronics Co., could surpass Nokia as the world's largest maker of phones by volume this year, according to some market observers.Nokia Plans Cheaper Lumia Phones as Struggles Mount - WSJ.com
Mr. Elop said Nokia's nonsmartphone portfolio is at a disadvantage among price-sensitive consumers in the Middle East, Africa, Asia, and elsewhere, who are also increasingly tech-savvy. He said Nokia will be launching basic phones with increased social-networking support, such as Facebook in Arabic and improved integration with Twitter."
"During the final three months of last year, Microsoft had a drop in overall sales from Windows, at least partly because of the Apple iPad, which sapped sales of low-end laptop computers. In its most recent quarter, sales of Windows PCs to consumers suffered because of the iPad.Microsoft’s Earnings Surpass Expectations - NYTimes.com
Big business customers, though, picked up the slack, showing how Microsoft’s products are entrenched within one of the most lucrative sectors of the technology market.
“It was nothing to get superexcited about, but relative to what we were experiencing, it’s better than a poke in the eye,” Rick Sherlund, an analyst at Nomura Securities, said of the Windows sales."
"Driving the beat: The majority of Microsoft’s various divisions, which all posted revenue increases, save one. Strong Windows 7 adoption allowed the company’s Windows and Windows Live Division to post revenue of $4.62 billion, a 4 percent increase over the year prior. Its Server & Tools business posted $4.57 billion in third-quarter revenue, a 14 percent increase from the year prior. Revenues were up 9 percent at Microsoft’s Business Division which reported $5.81 billion in revenue. And they were up 6 percent at Online Services, which posted $707 million in revenue.Microsoft Earnings Surprisingly Better Than Expected - John Paczkowski - News - AllThingsD
That leaves Entertainment & Devices, which was the big loser this quarter. It posted revenue of $1.62 billion, a decrease of 16 percent. Evidently, some of the shine is starting to come off the Kinect."
"A host of press reports suggest that Google Inc. will next week launch a new product called Drive, a free “cloud storage’’ service that’ll let you stash five gigabytes of data online, and access it anywhere through any Internet-connected device.Cloud computing in the real world - Business - The Boston Globe
It’s welcome news, but a bit late. More than 50 million people worldwide already use a similar service called Dropbox. There are many more cloud storage offerings, too. SugarSync, Microsoft Corp.’s SkyDrive, and a new offering called Cubby, from Woburn-based LogMeIn Inc., to name only a few of the more appealing ones that I have tried."
Thursday, April 19, 2012
"Cloud note and storage app Evernote is raising a massive fifth round of funding of between $50 to $100 million at a valuation that tops $1 billion, according to multiple sources close to the company."Evernote Raising $50 Million To $100 Million At A $1 Billion+ Valuation | TechCrunch
"IN TIMES of war it is a bold strategy. But agreeing to stand down unilaterally, while retaining a defensive capability, is precisely what Twitter seems to have done in the theatre of intellectual-property (IP) conflict. According to a new agreement, which replaces old contracts with its employees and other inventors, the microblogging giant forswears firing the opening salvo in patent lawsuits. If adopted by other firms, the approach could usher in a non-aggression pact of sorts. Today's hot wars, costing belligerents billions of dollars in suits and countersuits, with uncertain outcomes, would turn into a colder one, consuming fewer resources."Intellectual-property lawsuits: Patents into ploughshares | The Economist
Check the post link below for more details from Amazon CTO Werner Vogels
“Today Amazon Web Services launched AWS Marketplace, an online store that makes it easy for you to find, buy, and immediately start using software and services that run on the AWS Cloud. You can use AWS Marketplace’s 1-Click deployment to quickly launch pre-configured software on your own Amazon EC2 instances and pay only for what you use, by the hour or month. AWS handles billing and payments, and software charges appear on your AWS bill.
Marketplace has software listings from well-known vendors including 10gen, CA, Canonical, Couchbase, Check Point Software, IBM, Microsoft, SAP, Zend, and others, as well as many widely used open source offerings including Wordpress, Drupal, and MediaWiki.”
"The direct impetus for this column is IBM’s internal plan to grow earnings-per-share (EPS) to $20 by 2015. The primary method for accomplishing this feat, according to the plan, will be by reducing US employee head count by 78 percent in that time frame.I, Cringely » Blog Archive Not your father's IBM - Cringely on technology
Reducing employees by more than three quarters in three years is a bold and difficult task. What will it leave behind? Who, under this plan, will still be a US IBM employee in 2015? Top management will remain, the sales organization will endure, as will employees working on US government contracts that require workers to be US citizens. Everyone else will be gone. Everyone."
Neal Stephenson on Science Fiction, Building Towers 20 Kilometers High ... and Insurance - Technology Review
"In fact, said Stephenson, we already have much of the fundamental technology we need to fulfill such science fiction ambitions as large scale solar power production, or routine space flight. Instead, he said, we need to start looking at the non-technological obstacles to these advances, citing insurance as a key example. The development of alternative space launch systems has been curtailed by the unwillingness of the insurance industry to underwrite satellite launches on systems for which there is no good model of the risk involved. Turning to the audience of mostly MIT students, Stephenson said "maybe some of you people need to go into the insurance industry instead of writing code."Neal Stephenson on Science Fiction, Building Towers 20 Kilometers High ... and Insurance - Technology Review
The response was nervous laughter."
"Amazon’s cloud computing infrastructure is growing so fast that it’s silently becoming a core piece of the internet.Amazon's Secretive Cloud Carries 1 Percent of the Internet | Wired Enterprise | Wired.com
That’s according to an analysis done by DeepField Networks, a start-up that number-crunched several weeks’ worth of anonymous network traffic provided by internet service providers, mainly in North America.
They found that one-third of the several million users in the study visited a website that uses Amazon’s infrastructure each day."
For another Samsung budget product review, see Samsung Galaxy Player 3.6
“The good: Ice Cream Sandwich experience for only US$250; more extras than the Kindle Fire.
The bad: Screen doesn't look as good as other PLS displays; camera performance is lacking.
The bottom line: The Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7.0 offers an excellent value and a full Android 4.0 experience that no other tablet can currently match for the price.”
"Oracle is suing Google for allegedly infringing intellectual property related to Oracle’s Java technology with its Android mobile software. In the email, written in 2010, Mr. Lindholm writes that he was asked by Mr. Page and Google co-founder Sergey Brin to explore alternatives to Java for use in Android — but found they all “suck.” He adds, “We need to negotiate a license for Java.”Who Is Tim Lindholm? Google’s CEO is Wondering That Too - Digits - WSJ
Google has fought to keep the email out of the trial taking place now in San Francisco, to no avail. During his testimony earlier this week, Mr. Page said he couldn’t recall the email, or providing such directions to Mr. Lindholm, or even for that matter the identity of Mr. Lindholm."
"Cisco has notified its employees that it has funded an advanced networking startup, called Insieme, with $100 million, with the right to eventually buy the company for as much as $750 million more.Cisco Announces Its $850 Million Spin-In - NYTimes.com
As reported in Bits last month Insieme was founded by three Cisco employees who have previously two other created Cisco-funded companies, one in data storage and one in high-speed networking. Like Insieme, these companies were designed to be purchased by Cisco, a creation known as a “spin in” company. The spin-ins can create disruptive products quickly, but also risk hurting company morale by making some star employees multimillionaires with little risk, while others are left behind."
Wednesday, April 18, 2012
Jeffrey Rosen: How The Obama Administration’s Suit Against Book Publishers Proves The Bankruptcy Of Our Antitrust Laws | The New Republic
"How did the Justice Department end up going after the wrong monopoly? Current anti-trust law constrains monopolies only when they engage in predatory pricing by selling items under cost to crush their competitors. (Amazon’s pricing arguably isn’t predatory because its using e-books as a “loss leader” to drive sales of the Kindle). Conservative judges have also been eager to interpret antitrust law narrowly. Since the 1990s, the Supreme Court’s interpretation of antitrust law has been remarkably tilted toward business defendants. Although courts once held that monopolies were bad with occasional exceptions, the Supreme Court is increasingly holding the monopolies are good unless they engage in predatory pricing. So skewed is the status quo in favor of monopolies that antitrust defendants have won 15 out of the past 16 cases before the Supreme Court. "Jeffrey Rosen: How The Obama Administration’s Suit Against Book Publishers Proves The Bankruptcy Of Our Antitrust Laws | The New Republic
"TR: Why does Facebook need a team of academically trained researchers like yours?Facebook's Telescope on Human Behavior - Technology Review
Marlow: We conduct science research to answer the most pressing product questions. How do people derive value from Facebook? What motivates interactions? How do these change over time? The science of Facebook is the science of social interaction, so our work addresses fundamental questions about human dynamics, such as personal influence, tie strength, information diffusion, and social support.
Facebook has rethought how to make research have a greater impact in an industrial setting—using it to help make decisions and evolve our products. Traditional research labs like Bell Labs or Xerox Park have [shown that corporate research can have] a profound impact on culture and technology, developing countless inventions."
"He said web users needed to be more conscious that websites that seemed to be permanent fixtures of the online world could disappear within a few years. "Whatever social site, wherever you put your data, you should make sure that you can get it back and get it back in a standard form. And in fact if I were you I would do that regularly, just like you back up your computer … maybe our grandchildren depending on which website we use may or may not be able to see our photos."Tim Berners-Lee: demand your data from Google and Facebook | Technology | guardian.co.uk
Berners-Lee said he was concerned by the rise of so-called "native apps" such as those produced for the iPhone and iPad because they were not searchable. "Every time somebody puts a magazine on a phone now and doesn't put it on to a web app [a form of open software] you know we lose a whole lot of information to the general public discourse – I can't link to it, so I can't tweet it, I can't discuss it, I can't like it, I can't hate it.""
Sergey Brin - Google+ - I believe the internet has been one of the greatest forces for good in the world…
See the full (Google+) post for more details and a lively discussion thread
“So what was my concern and what about Google for that matter?
I became an entrepreneur during the 90’s, the boom time of what you might now call Web 1.0. Yahoo created a directory of all the sites they could find without asking anyone for permission. Ebay quickly became the largest auction company in the world without having to pay a portion of revenue to any ISP. Paypal became the most successful payment company and Amazon soared in e-commerce also without such tolls or any particular company’s permission.
Today, starting such a service would entail navigating a number of new tollbooths and gatekeepers. If you are interested in this issue I recommend you read http://futureoftheinternet.org/ by +Jonathan Zittrain. While openness is a core value at Google, there are a number of areas where we can improve too (as the book outlines).
But regardless of how you feel about digital ecosystems or about Google, please do not take the free and open internet for granted from government intervention. To the extent that free flow of information threatens the powerful, those in power will seek to suppress it.”
"I had covered Jobs for Fortune and The Wall Street Journal since 1985, but I didn't come to fully appreciate the importance of these "lost" years until after his death last fall. Rummaging through the storage shed, I discovered some three dozen tapes holding recordings of extended interviews--some lasting as long as three hours--that I'd conducted with him periodically over the past 25 years. (Snippets are scattered throughout this story.) Many I had never replayed--a couple hadn't even been transcribed before now. Some were interrupted by his kids bolting into the kitchen as we talked. During others, he would hit the pause button himself before saying something he feared might come back to bite him. Listening to them again with the benefit of hindsight, the ones that took place during that interregnum jump out as especially enlightening."Into The Wild: Lost Conversations From Steve Jobs' Best Years | Fast Company
"Among the highlights emanating from U.S. District Court in San Francisco courtroom 8 today was Oracle CEO Larry Ellison's response to a question regarding the status of the Java programming language, which his company acquired when it bought Sun Microsystems in 2010.Oracle CEO Larry Ellison: I don't know if Java is free | Mobile - CNET News
Asked by Google's lead attorney, Robert Van Nest, if the Java language is free, Ellison was slow to respond. Judge William Alsup pushed Ellison to answer with a yes or no. As ZDNet reporter Rachel King observed in the courtroom, Ellison resisted and huffed, "I don't know."
In other words, it's complicated."
"The first quarter displayed how the breadth of the company’s business serves to deliver steady profits. The weakness in the hardware business was offset by higher profit margins in services and strong growth in emerging markets.Despite Flat Sales, I.B.M. Earnings Beat Estimates - NYTimes.com
Hardware sales fell 7 percent, to $3.7 billion, pulled down by lower sales of mainframe and large Unix data-serving computers, compared with the previous year when new models had recently been introduced. But that falloff was more than offset by modest growth and higher profit margins in I.B.M.’s big software and services business.
I.B.M.’s big services business, which accounts for 57 percent of its revenue, more than $15 billion in the quarter, grew a scant 1 percent. But the profit of the services business rose 11 percent.
The software unit grew by 5 percent, to $5.6 billion, while profits in that high-margin business increased 12 percent. The software business generates 43 percent of the company’s profit."
"If you’re thinking of buying a new laptop this spring, my advice is to think again. Unless your laptop is on its last legs and you have to move quickly, there are compelling reasons to wait until at least the summer, and probably the fall, to buy a new machine, especially if you are looking for a Windows PC, but even if you are in the market for a Mac."Walt Mossberg's Spring Laptop Buyer's Guide - Walt Mossberg - Personal Technology - AllThingsD
Tuesday, April 17, 2012
"Now let’s talk details. It’s no surprise that it will roll out for free. What’s interesting though is that Google is planning to start everyone with 5 GB of storage. Of course you can buy more, but that trumps Dropbox’s 2 GB that is included with every account. Dropbox does make it easy to get more space, including 23 GB of potential upgrades for HTC users."Google Drive Launching Next Week - Details Inside
Confirming Office app (but not Outlook) bundling with the ARM/WOA edition
“Windows RT is the newest member of the Windows family – also known as Windows on ARM or WOA, as we’ve referred to it previously. This single edition will only be available pre-installed on PCs and tablets powered by ARM processors and will help enable new thin and lightweight form factors with impressive battery life. Windows RT will include touch-optimized desktop versions of the new Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote. For new apps, the focus for Windows RT is development on the new Windows runtime, or WinRT, which we unveiled in September and forms the foundation of a new generation of cloud-enabled, touch-enabled, web-connected apps of all kinds. For more details on WOA, we suggest reading this blog post which shares more detail on how we have been building Windows 8 to run on the ARM architecture.”
"In reaction to Apple’s Monday pullback, Gene Munster, Apple’s outspoken Trillion-Dollar Bull at Piper Jaffray, put out an afternoon note that reiterated his Buy rating and $910 price target—in spite of what he said were jitters on the Street over the strength of Apple’s Mac computer business, which is on the verge of a product cycle refresh.Apple's Stock Stumbles Ahead of Earnings - Businessweek
Mama said there’d be days like this. But Mama also knows that any other company wouldn’t much mind this kind of day after having added $206 billion in market capitalization, or one Wal-Mart (WMT), in just four and a half months."
"Apple's shares plunged 4.1% on Monday, extending their slide to a fifth consecutive day and sparking worries about whether the maker of iPads and iPhones may be headed for a bigger descent. Apple is now down 9.9% from its intraday peak of $644 hit on April 10, just shy of the 10% level that market watchers call a "correction." On Monday, Apple fell $25.10, to $580.13, in 4 p.m. Nasdaq Stock Market composite trading.Apple Shares Lose Shine - WSJ.com
The past five days' decline has seen more than $50 billion shaved off Apple's market capitalization. That is more than Hewlett-Packard Co.'s entire market cap of about $48 billion."
Monday, April 16, 2012
The Significance of Microsoft OneNote Mobile for Android | Introducing OneNote Mobile for Android | Que
Intro section from my latest OneNote article
“Microsoft pleasantly surprised a lot of OneNote fans in early February 2012, when it announced and released OneNote Mobile for Android, a version of OneNote Mobile available for Android smartphones (running Android 2.3 or later). It can also run on Android tablets, but has not been tested on or optimized for Android tablet devices. The application is available in a wide variety of global regions (see the OneNote Blog introductory post for a list of supported international regions). It is free when used for creating up to 500 notes (and also free for reading an unlimited number of notes), and costs $4.99 for an unlimited note authoring license.
Considering the significant Android smartphone market momentum, adding Android support to the list of OneNote client platforms is a laudable response to OneNote customer demand. It's also a timely competitive move because Microsoft was previously at risk of losing OneNote customers who use OneNote on PCs, but also use Android smartphones, to Evernote.
In the past, given the intense competitive landscape between Microsoft and Google, searching for "Microsoft" and "Android" together was likely to mostly return results about legal actions and patent licensing agreements, so it's great to see Microsoft responding to customer requests from people who want to use OneNote on their Android devices.
The rest of this article provides an overview of the new OneNote Mobile for Android client, highlights some limitations, and concludes with some general projections about what might happen next in the rapidly expanding competition between OneNote and Evernote.”
Google's Sergey Brin: Facebook and Apple a threat to Internet freedom | Internet & Media - CNET News
"He said that Facebook and Apple are stifling innovation and risk Balkanizing the Web, and went as far as to say that Google would never have come into existence if Facebook were dominant.Google's Sergey Brin: Facebook and Apple a threat to Internet freedom | Internet & Media - CNET News
"You have to play by their rules, which are really restrictive. The kind of environment that we developed Google in, the reason that we were able to develop a search engine, is the web was so open. Once you get too many rules that will stifle innovation.""
"The Educational Development Corporation, saying it was fed up with Amazon’s scorched-earth tactics, announced at the end of February that it would remove all its titles from the retailer’s virtual shelves. That eliminated at a stroke $1.5 million in annual sales, a move that could be a significant hit to the 46-year-old EDC’s bottom line.Amazon’s E-Book Pricing a Constant Thorn for Publishers - NYTimes.com
“Amazon is squeezing everyone out of business,” said Randall White, EDC’s chief executive. “I don’t like that. They’re a predator. We’re better off without them.”"
Friday, April 13, 2012
I’ve been exploring Springpad – it’s sort of a cross between Evernote and Pinterest
“Springpad gives you a place to quickly and easily save anything you want to remember. Take a note, create a task, scan a product barcode and look up the book your friend mentioned. The best part is that no matter where you are, Springpad is there with you to make sure you don't forget something worth remembering. Just think it and Spring it, and it'll be there for you when you need it.”
My candidate for error message of the week, when I tried to use the Springpad “Spring It!” Web clipping tool on a Springpad page:
"The new "Microsoft Open Technologies, Inc." provides an ideal firewall to protect Microsoft from the risks it has been alleging exist in open source and open standards. As such, it will make it "easier and faster" for them to respond to the inevitability of open source in their market without constant push-back from cautious and reactionary corporate process.Why Microsoft's New Open Source Company? - Simon Says...
In that light, it sounds like a smart move. If you know more, let me know - I'll be watching closely."
"More than 15 years after that stunt [Edgar], Malamud is still making the same argument: If you make government information free and easily accessible, there’s no telling who’ll start using it or what good ideas will spring up. “Every time I put something online there’s a huge audience,” says Malamud, founder of Public.Resource.Org, a nonprofit that advocates for government transparency. “The industry guys think the only audience is industry types and Ralph Nader.”One Man's Quest to Make Information Free - Businessweek
Now Malamud’s taking on the best practices for construction, industry, and manufacturing. They’re written by hundreds of nonprofits known as “standards development organizations.” About 3,000 of these standards are referenced but not fully spelled out in federal law. "
"The Nook Simple Touch with GlowLight (official name) is nearly identical to the earlier model — same 6-inch E Ink Pearl touchscreen display, same internals, same size and chassis — but is actually hair lighter, at 6.95 ounces vs. 7.48 ounces. And, of course, the GlowLight. Barnes & Noble calls it a patent pending technology that consists of scattering LEDs up top that work with an anti-glare screen protector to uniformly spread light across the screen. There might be some other tricks at play to make it uniform, specifically along the sides and bottom, but they wouldn't tell us anything more. "New Nook Simple Touch with GlowLight coming early May for $139 (hands-on video) | The Verge
"Apple’s bluster, though, was unfounded. Amazon may have lost some share in e-books, but it still dominates the fast-growing market. At the same time, Apple’s failure to trounce Amazon in e-books did little to diminish the appeal of the iPad, which became a smash hit for other reasons. James McQuivey, an analyst at Forrester Research, said research by his company indicated that games, Web browsing, Facebook and other applications are bigger parts of the appeal of the iPad than e-books.Apple Not Likely to Be a Loser in the E-Book Legal Fight - NYTimes.com
“The fact is that they didn’t weaken Amazon the way they had hoped to, but it doesn’t harm them,” Mr. McQuivey said."
"Barnes & Noble Inc. bore the brunt of Wednesday's antitrust settlement between the U.S. government and three major book publishers, losing 6.4% of its market value on Thursday alone and tumbling 17% this month.Antitrust Settlement Hits Barnes & Noble Shares - WSJ.com
Those market worries reflected the broad sentiment in the publishing world that Amazon.com Inc. is likely to emerge a far stronger competitor in the fast-growing e-book business now that it once again will be able to discount digital books by such best-selling authors as Mary Higgins Clark and Christopher Moore."
"It's as if the world's celebrities, politicians, and companies were your Facebook friends. News aggregation website Wavii, launched today, distills current affairs into a feed of the kind of pithy, easily digested updates seen on the social network.A Startup Repackages the News for a Facebook Generation - Technology Review
Wavii creates its newsfeed by digesting information from online news sources and turning them into short summaries. It adds photos, charts, and maps as appropriate. Users choose a set of interests, companies, or people that they want to see updates about in their newsfeed."
Apple Takes Aim at Adobe with Patents for Responsive Device Targeted Content Creation Tools - Forbes
"Apple is out to change all that and Adobe would seem to be its primary competitor. In patents published today and reported by PatentlyApple, Apple has described “a new electronic content authoring tool in the works that’s configured to optimize authored content for one or more intended devices.”Apple Takes Aim at Adobe with Patents for Responsive Device Targeted Content Creation Tools - Forbes
"Microsoft is moving its Interoperability Strategy team into a new, wholly-owned subsidiary, the company announced on April 12.Microsoft folds interoperability team into open-source subsidiary | Microsoft - CNET News
The new group, known as Microsoft Open Technologies, will be headed by Jean Paoli, who is currently the general manager of the team. It will be comprised of about 50 to 75 full-time and part-time employees and contractors. A board consisting of Microsoft managers from other business units will oversee the new entity."