"Microsoft recently reported the first quarterly financial loss in its history. The reason was a big acquisition gone sour. Microsoft had to write off more than $6bn (£3.8bn) that it had spent to acquire Aquantive, an online advertising business.BBC News - Viewpoint: How PowerPoint changed Microsoft and my life
By contrast, Microsoft's earliest acquisition, PowerPoint, has been a financial success. Microsoft bought PowerPoint 25 years ago, on 31 July 1987.
The result may have been more valuable to Microsoft than any of the more than 100 acquisitions it has made since."
Tuesday, July 31, 2012
Mr. Adams declined to comment for this article. A Twitter spokeswoman said the company does not comment on individual users for privacy reasons."
"Having all that money can be daunting, so to help Mr. Cook, here is a potential shopping list — some must-buys and some pie-in-the-sky targets — that he may want to consider:Suggestions for an Apple Shopping List - NYTimes.com
NUANCE This is the one no-brainer on the list. Nuance, based in Burlington, Mass., provides much of the speech recognition technology behind Apple’s Siri and dictation functions. Right now, Apple has merely licensed it and integrated it into both its mobile devices like iPhones and iPads as well as its new Macintosh operating system. Most users think it is Apple technology, but those services wouldn’t work without Nuance."
"Oracle said Monday it has inked a deal to buy software-defined networking vendor Xsigo Systems, in a move that will support Oracle's ongoing foray into cloud computing. Terms of the acquisition, which is expected to close within a few months, were not disclosed.Oracle Buys Xsigo for Software-defined Networking | PCWorld Business Center
The announcement comes a week after VMWare said it would buy Xsigo competitor Nicira for US$1.26 billion."
"In fact, I'll go far enough to say that, if the iPhone 5 looks like the pictures that have recently appeared, Apple may be screwed.If The iPhone 5 Really Looks Like This, Apple May Be Screwed... - Business Insider
Because the "iPhone 5" looks pretty much like the iPhone 4S. Which looked exactly like the iPhone 4, a phone that is now two years old."
"According to Apple’s latest 10-Q filing, prepayment for inventory components rose $1.15 billion sequentially in the June quarter. That’s a big increase, one that puts such prepayments at their highest level in four years — 12.6 percent of Apple’s total sales, according to Wells Fargo Securities analyst Maynard Um. And as Um notes, they’re a good indicator that Apple is ramping up for a big product launch — or several of them."Apple Stocks Up on Components for September iPhone Launch - John Paczkowski - News - AllThingsD
Monday, July 30, 2012
"The trial may well boil down to whether a little copying is such a bad thing. Samsung’s filings indicate that it will acknowledge that it closely studies its rival’s products. That some Samsung phones and tablets imitate the look and features of Apple’s versions is pretty much beyond question.Apple vs. Samsung: Shaping the Mobile Battlefield - Businessweek
So what? Samsung will ask. Apple’s innovations are built on earlier products made by numerous rivals, the Korean company will contend, and the late Steve Jobs’s real genius was for marketing those innovations, not coming up with them in the first place."
"In a court case kicking off today in San Jose, Apple is tackling Samsung over software and hardware patent infringements in an attempt to win over $2.5 billion in damages. But behind all the claims and counter-claims, is this court case really a fight between Apple and Google?"Is The Latest Apple-Samsung Court Case Really All About Google?
"Microsoft announced new keyboards and mice today: the Wedge Touch Mouse and Wedge Touch Keyboard, and the Sculpt Touch Mouse and Sculpt Touch Keyboard. The Sculpt products, though quite nice, are iterative updates of existing gear, but the Wedge Touch Mouse and Wedge Touch Keyboard are truly cool, and offer further evidence of the Microsoft’s renewed commitment to great design."Microsoft's New Mouse And Keyboard Are Actually Quite Lovely | Gadget Lab | Wired.com
Sunday, July 29, 2012
Cambridge is becoming a hub for social media research from MIT to Microsoft - Business - The Boston Globe
"Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology each have dozens of scholars conducting research on social media. IBM’s local lab has a team of academics focused on social networking for business, and Google Inc. has its own specialists working out of its Kendall Square office. Most recently, Microsoft Research New England created a social media research lab by hiring some of the discipline’s best-known scholars."Cambridge is becoming a hub for social media research from MIT to Microsoft - Business - The Boston Globe
"While Quora still doesn’t have the brand recognition to make it a first stop for question askers, Google is sending a tremendous number of people through the door, now accounting for 50 percent of Quora’s traffic. “Search engines are pulling up Quora content to answer complex questions, and as more searchers click on Quora links, visit and return to the site, and link back to it, these “votes” in favor of Quora as a relevant destination help improve its organic search rankings over time,” Eli Goodman, comScore’s “Search Evangelist” explained. Goodman likens Quora’s growth to the growing market for original Web programming offered by the likes of Hulu and YouTube. It’s evidence that a market exists for premium, quality content — the answers to our “complex informational needs.”"Silently but surely, Quora is growing thanks to Google | Digital Trends
"Facebook is in a pinch of its own making, with foaming-at-the-mouth investors on one side pushing aggressive ads and touchy users on the other demanding privacy. The company will have to let someone down. Facebook would do better by far to disappoint Wall Street, to admit it’s not the $100 billion company it recently said it was. Investors will come flocking back whenever the company figures out how to better leverage its massive user base. If Facebook chases away those users, on the other hand, the climb back to such a rich valuation at any point in the future just gets steeper."Facebook, Don't Sell Out Users for Wall Street | Wired Business | Wired.com
"And because all iOS devices (and most modern MacBooks with solid-state storage) micro-wake themselves periodically to download updates, I don’t even need to worry about boarding a plane and slipping the surly bonds of Internet access for six hours. I can trust that the documents I worked on an hour ago are already safely on the device. This isn’t like Google Docs."Mountain Lion’s iCloud puts life, documents in sync - Chicago Sun-Times
"You don’t tell someone “The problem is the live links,” and then, when that person has complied with your change request and removed the live links, turn around and say, “No, no. The problem is the CONTENT. You can’t mention Amazon in your lesson.["]Apple Made Its Decision. My Turn. | Holly Lisle: Official Author Homepage
This is not professional behavior from a professional market.
And cold moment of truth here—you cannot write a writing course that includes information on publishing and self-publishing and NOT mention Amazon. It’s the place where your writers are going to make about 90% of their money."
"“We’ve always felt that Android tablets were where the Instapaper for Android market was at so we’re thrilled to see an Android tablet that’s finally resonating with people,” he says.Instapaper for Android Sees 600% Boost in Downloads From Nexus 7
“I’m also pretty impressed with how up-to-date and energetic the user base is. 70% of devices are running 4.0+, which helps to disprove the notion that all Android development has to be a legacy support nightmare,” Rock said, referring to the general consensus that Android development is hindered by software fragmentation."
"Forget about the ripped-and-rugged sprinters and shot-putters, bring on the gold-medal geeks.Berners-Lee, Web take bow at Olympics | Tech Culture - CNET News
The opening ceremony of this summer's London Olympics obliged that sentiment, as Web inventor Sir Tim Berners-Lee got the star treatment during the extravaganza.
A hip-hoppy dance routine featuring legions of fist-pumping club-types gave way as a stage-set suburban house rose from the ground to reveal a lone keyboard jockey surfing away in solitude."
"A storm knocks out electric power? There’s an app for that, and soon there may be a spy drone, too.Drones and iPad Apps May Help in Power Failures - NYTimes.com
Facing more frequent storms that cripple electric distribution systems over big areas, utility companies are drafting iPads and military-style aerial surveillance robots to get the lights back on faster."
Friday, July 27, 2012
"Depending on who you are talking to there were several very different reasons why the Internet was created, whether it was military command and control (Curtis LeMay told me that), to create a new communication and commerce infrastructure (Al Gore), or simply to advance the science of digital communications (lots of people). But Bob Taylor says the Internet was created to save money. And since Bob Taylor was, more than anyone, the guy who caused the Internet to be created, well I’ll believe him."I, Cringely » Blog Archive The DARPA Way ~ I, Cringely - Cringely on technology
The economics of Google Fiber and what it means for U.S. broadband — Tech News and Analysis [GigaOM]
"And Google may have a found a way to do that — both in terms of constructing and operating a fiber to the home network — by using its engineering team, existing consumer technologies such as QR codes and social engineering to influence how users sign up for access. Existing ISPs should take note — what Google has done here has fundamentally lowered the cost of building and deploying a network. It was cagey about if and when it would take its fiber-to-the-home show on the road, but if it does, it will pummel existing ISPs on price and service, have repercussions throughout the carrier equipment industry and entice a lot of end consumers to take on a more active role in marketing Google’s broadband."The economics of Google Fiber and what it means for U.S. broadband — Tech News and Analysis
"Google just added a new feature to its mobile search page that lets you hand-write search queries in cursive and block letters. Once you have enabled this new feature, you can simply start writing on your screen and Google will translate your scribbles into a legible search query. The new feature will work on iOS5+ devices, as well as Android 2.3+ phones and Android 4.0 tablets. You can write both single letters and complete words on the screen (assuming they are short enough to fit on your phone’s screen). In our brief test, this new feature worked surprisingly well."Search In Cursive: Google Now Lets You Hand-Write Search Queries On Phones And Tablets | TechCrunch
"Samsung and Apple together captured over half the global market, Strategy Analytics said. Global smartphone shipments grew 32 percent annually to 146 million units in the second quarter, the slowest growth rate since the third quarter of 2009, it said.Samsung's Q2 smartphone shipments nearly twice those of Apple, say research firms
Delivering hit models in most major price segments, Samsung shipped 50.5 million units in the quarter for a market share of 34.6 percent, while Apple shipped 26 million units for a 17.8 percent market share, after a modest 28 percent growth over the same quarter last year, according to Strategy Analytics. Apple's market share was flat compared with 18.4 percent recorded a year earlier."
"Bonus Round Ms. Sandberg congratulated Marissa Mayer on her new role at Yahoo. A few moments later, Ms. Mayer replied in kind via Twitter, saying: “Thanks for the shout out, @sherylsandberg – very excited to be here at @Yahoo!”"5 Takeaways From the Facebook Earnings Call - NYTimes.com
"For steel-stomached investors who want to defy the strong draft pushing down Facebook’s stock price, there are still plenty of reasons for optimism. The company is approaching 1 billion users worldwide, with more than half checking the site every day. That is simply unprecedented. Facebook also makes more than half its money in the U.S. and Canada but is growing more quickly in other regions such as Asia and Europe. As I pointed out in a post yesterday, the downside is that overseas users tend to be less lucrative for Facebook. There’s a big opportunity to close that gap as advertisers abroad grow more sophisticated about social media and Facebook beefs up its overseas staff."Facebook Belly-Flops Into its First Earnings Report - Businessweek
The Social Century: 100 Years of Talking, Watching, Reading and Writing in America - Derek Thompson - The Atlantic
Check the post link for some perspectives on the source McKinsey analysis
“In 2012, we've lived through a Cambrian explosion of communications technology. If you want to make or consume information, you can do it on Facebook, on Tumblr, on Twitter, on Pinterest, on Foursquare, in texts, on mobile phones, on land-line phones, on VOIP phones, on TV, on iPads, with head phones, with speakers, on the radio, in print, in the mail, and -- especially in the case of a Gchat and Twitter black out -- you are still permitted to speak into a real-live human's face, directly.”
"The move is a direct challenge to high-speed Internet and cable TV providers, who have long enjoyed a monopoly on their services in many communities across the country, and typically offer much slower Internet access speeds. And it could represent a major business expansion for the search giant—even though Google has painted the buildup as more of a charity project meant to drive tech innovation and get more people surfing the Web at higher speeds."Google Launches a Superfast Internet and TV Business - Technology Review
Thursday, July 26, 2012
"Consider the ridiculously awesome value that lucky Kansas City residents are getting: For just $120 a month and a two-year service agreement, Google Fiber subscribers get a 1Gbps fiber-to-the-home connection, hundreds of fiber television channels on-demand and in full HD, and a full terabyte of storage on Google Drive. What’s more, Google is selling customers this service with no broadband caps or overage fees. Yes, that’s right: People who subscribe to Google Fiber will never be punished for using the service too much."Google Fiber opinion: cable competition needs to up its game
"But here’s the thing: Google has tied its fate to Google+, but not in the way you think. Employee bonuses are connected to usage numbers on the platform. One by one, every product is being connected to Google+. And the truth is that Google doesn’t really need you to use Google+ to post status updates with your friends as much as they simply need you to log in and tell them your age.Why you shouldn’t write off Google+ just yet - The Washington Post
If you do this, suddenly they can tie together your iPhone, your work machine, and your laptop. Your 3 machines become one person. You. And you are broadcasting signals all the time. If you don’t explicitly tell Google where you live, what you do, and how old you are, they will be able to make fantastically informed guesses."
"Skype, the online phone service long favored by political dissidents, criminals and others eager to communicate beyond the reach of governments, has expanded its cooperation with law enforcement authorities to make online chats and other user information available to police, said industry and government officials familiar with the changes."Skype makes chats and user data more available to police - The Washington Post
"A new worm targeted Iran’s nuclear program, closing down the “automation network” at the Natanz and Fordo facilities, the Internet security site reported, citing an e-mail it said was sent by a scientist inside Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization.Iran Nuclear Plants Hit By Virus Playing AC/DC, Website Says - Businessweek
The virus also prompted several of the computers on site to play the song “Thunderstruck” by AC/DC at full volume in the middle of the night, according to the e-mail, part of which is published in English on the website."
A not-fun week for Netflix, but follow the article link for some accentuate-the-positive dimensions
“Yesterday Reed Hastings saw a quarter of his company’s stock value disappear. Today’s insult to injury: A diss from Consumer Reports.”
Apple Unleashes Its New Mountain Lion System - Katherine Boehret - The Digital Solution - AllThingsD
"I got completely addicted to Mountain Lion’s Share sheets, which pop up whenever you’d hope to be able to share something. This includes Web pages from Apple’s Safari Web browser, and items from Apple’s Notes program or photos that you want to send to friends. Share sheets use whimsical animations to bring a paper clip, photo and text together on a little piece of virtual paper that gets whooshed off into the ether. Sharing works through a variety of methods, so you can be sure to reach anyone."Apple Unleashes Its New Mountain Lion System - Katherine Boehret - The Digital Solution - AllThingsD
Who invented the Internet?: The outrageous conservative claim that every tech innovation came from private enterprise. - Slate Magazine
Correcting some WSJ propaganda from earlier this week
“If you want to find out who built the Internet and why, there are a few main sources you should consult. If you’ve got time, read Where Wizards Stay Up Late, Katie Hafner and Matthew Lyon’s definitive history of the founding of the worldwide network. If you don’t have much time, look at A Brief History of the Internet, written by many of the scientists who worked on the system in its early days. The many Wikipedia articles on the history of the Internet are also quite helpful. All these sources put the lie to Crovitz’s ridiculously partisan theory that Xerox, and not the government, created the Internet.”
"In an SEC filing, Google spelled out why it paid $12.4 billion for hardware maker Motorola Mobility, in a deal that closed in May. $5.5 billion of the total price was for intellectual property, specifically “patents and developed technology.” Another $2.9 billion was attributed to cash acquired, $2.6 billion was for “goodwill,” $730 million for customer relationships and $670 million was for “other net assets acquired.”"Google SEC Filing Details Why It Paid $12.4 Billion For Motorola | TechCrunch
Wednesday, July 25, 2012
Apple confirms: OS X Mountain Lion available tomorrow on the Mac App Store for $19.99 | 9to5Mac | Apple Intelligence
"OS X Mountain Lion will cost $19.99, a $10 drop from OS X Lion’s $29.99 pricing. A user can download Mac OS 10.8 via the Mac App Store on one machine, and they will have the ability to install it via the purchased apps feature on up to five total Macs. The system software update will be available to Snow Leopard users in addition to Lion users.Apple confirms: OS X Mountain Lion available tomorrow on the Mac App Store for $19.99 | 9to5Mac | Apple Intelligence
OS X Mountain Lion includes over 200 new features, according to Apple, including Notification Center, Game Center, AirPlay Mirroring, enhanced iCloud integration, Notes and Reminders apps, an improved Safari and Mail, Twitter and Facebook integration, and voice dictation."
"VMware is a natural suitor for this type of technology. After all, it popularized virtual—or software-based—servers and has been on a quest to handle most of the core data center functions in software. The company has done work on its own virtualized networking technology, while also now acquiring some cutting-edge help.Nicira's $1.26 Billion Path From Espionage to Acquisition - Businessweek
That said, VMware, which is 80 percent owned by EMC (EMC), has been a longtime ally of Cisco Systems (CSCO), the world’s largest networking company, and the deal could complicate that relationship. Nicira’s technology is seen as a threat to Cisco, which dominates the physical switch business."
How Microsoft Lost Its Mojo: Steve Ballmer and Corporate America’s Most Spectacular Decline | Business | Vanity Fair
"Once upon a time, Microsoft dominated the tech industry; indeed, it was the wealthiest corporation in the world. But since 2000, as Apple, Google, and Facebook whizzed by, it has fallen flat in every arena it entered: e-books, music, search, social networking, etc., etc. Talking to former and current Microsoft executives, Kurt Eichenwald finds the fingers pointing at C.E.O. Steve Ballmer, Bill Gates’s successor, as the man who led them astray."How Microsoft Lost Its Mojo: Steve Ballmer and Corporate America’s Most Spectacular Decline | Business | Vanity Fair
"One of the most intriguing things about the Reuters report is its use of Amazon’s hiring efforts to try to infer the organization’s plans (since Parneros, alas, was only so forthcoming). For instance, Reuters builds a strong case that Amazon is working on a smartphone based on recent job postings for Amazon’s Lab126 research and design center in Silicon Valley. For instance, the lab’s “Field Quality Engineer” will need to coordinate with carriers--and it’d be nice if such a person had “prior wireless or related field test experience that covers smart phones or smart devices a plus.” The smoking gun on that Kindle phone?"Amazon's Expanded Tablet Push - Technology Review
"The researchers set out to determine what impact, if any, access to information via Internet search engines has on memory. Their conclusion: When posed a question, people are primed to think of computers, and when they expect to have access to future information, they have lower rates of recall about the actual information and enhanced recall of where they can find the information. For example, you’re not likely to remember the Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon chain of associations that leads from the actor to Marlon Brando, but you will remember that you can easily figure it out by going to IMDB."Google Search Shapes Memory, New Research Shows
Check the post link for additional charts
“But the big-picture story is that this is a slower period ahead of the expected new iPhone and potential new iPad this fall (and maybe someday, a television). Apple’s 23% year-over-year revenue growth was its slowest since 12% growth in the June 2009 quarter, and was almost down at Google’s 21% level!”
"Will Apple roll over and let Google and Android slow down its march toward digital dominance? Probably not, as I do expect Apple to introduce a 7” tablet for many reasons and also as Apple laid out at WWDC, iOS 6 is very compelling, especially when connected with other Apple devices. Today, the broad tech ecosystem and investors see Apple as invincible, understandable as they have plowed over many of the largest companies in tech. If Google and Android start to gain credibility in the tablet space, what message will that send about invincibility? Apple needs to stop Google in their tracks and remove all of the oxygen during the holidays to maintain its dominant status."How Android Raises the Experience Bar with Nexus 7 | TechPinions
Tuesday, July 24, 2012
"Some people disagree there is a problem, even if they agree that the online activities tap into deep neurological mechanisms. Eric Schiermeyer, a co-founder of Zynga, an online game company and maker of huge hits like FarmVille, has said he has helped addict millions of people to dopamine, a neurochemical that has been shown to be released by pleasurable activities, including video game playing, but also is understood to play a major role in the cycle of addiction.Silicon Valley Worries About Addiction to Devices - NYTimes.com
But what he said he believed was that people already craved dopamine and that Silicon Valley was no more responsible for creating irresistible technologies than, say, fast-food restaurants were responsible for making food with such wide appeal."
"Think of it in real-world terms: Gather a bunch of people in a room together who may or may not know each other, and it’s difficult to sustain an active conversation without direction. Similarly, as time passes in a Hangout, the novelty of a group video chat wears off. In the lack of direction, the retention rate suffers.Can Google Make a Case for Hangouts? - Mike Isaac - Social - AllThingsD
Thus the dilemma of Hangouts on Google+. Sure, it may be a cool feature, but in the long run, is cool enough?"
Looks like somebody is going to have a remedial lesson in the “nondisclosure’ concept
“The new Amazon tablets will come in a range of sizes, including a 10-inch model, Reuters reported on Monday, citing Demos Parneros, president of U.S. retail for Staples, as well as other analysts, developers, and retail partners. Amazon, the world's largest Internet retailer, is reportedly looking to broaden its mobile device offerings beyond its existing e-readers and the Kindle Fire tablet to help the company sell more digital goods like MP3s, movies, TV shows, and apps.”
“Cloud computing pioneer VMware has paid $1.26 billion for Nicira, a startup that we featured in our March list of the 50 most innovative companies in the world (see our feature article "A New Net"), and a pioneer in a new market known as "software defined networking".”For $1.26bn, VMWare Buys a Chance to Reinvent the Internet - Technology Review
Monday, July 23, 2012
"Shin Jong-kyun, the president of Samsung's information technology and mobile communication division, told reporters that the Android-powered smartphone surpassed the 10 million sales mark but did not reveal specific sales figures, according to the Yonhap news agency. That translates to about 190,000 Galaxy S3 devices sold every day for the past two months."Samsung Galaxy S3 hits 10 million sales mark early | Mobile - CNET News
"As a byproduct of its meteoric rise, Facebook is facing an inevitable hurdle: in the United States, where it makes most of its advertising revenue, it is not drawing new users. The latest numbers from comScore, a market research firm, showed that in May, 158.01 million unique visitors logged on to the network, down slightly from 158.69 million in April. Advertisers, and by extension shareholders, will look closely at whether Facebook can keep those users glued to the site for longer stretches of time.Facebook Advertising Efforts Face a Day of Judgment - NYTimes.com
Facebook is still growing in several countries, like Brazil and India, but it makes little to no money in those places."
"Jason Maynard, Software and Internet analyst for Wells Fargo Securities, points out: "Evernote, Dropbox, etc. all make great software that lives above a single device. [I'd] much rather use that than MobileMe." It would seem that these companies that are born on the web understand the concept of cloud much better than Apple, where cloud feels like a bolt-on strategy to help users stitch together their various Apple products.'Sacrifice another goat!: iCloud is Apple's biggest failure before Google • The Register
That would be something, but the promise butts up against a harsh reality: Apple's cloud services don't work. Or, at least, not well enough to be trusted."
Sunday, July 22, 2012
"Even though Microsoft does not yet officially support the iPad on its Office Web Apps, you can still access the online productivity suite thanks to Google’s recently released Chrome browser for iOS. It’s not a perfect solution, but if you need to get some editing done in a pinch it’ll work."Edit Docs on Your iPad Using Microsoft Office Web Apps | PCWorld
"Some devices, like my Android phone, a Galaxy Nexus by Samsung, have a back cover that slides off and a battery that pops out. And when evaluators at iFixit, a Web site offering do-it-yourself repair manuals and parts, disassembled Google’s new Nexus 7 tablet for a “teardown” review, they found that it was easy to open and repair.Cellphone Cases Can Imitate Their Makers - Digital Domain - NYTimes.com
In iFixit’s video review, the narrator describes how the battery can be replaced without unscrewing a single screw. She is moved to declare, “The sustainability-geek inside me wants to hug Google for this.”"
"DIY is hot. In May Research in Motion, the maker of the BlackBerry, unveiled a kit that allows people with no programming skills to create a working app within minutes. Apple, too, has applied for a patent indicating it is also building a DIY tool for iOS, its mobile operating system. And in March the Massachusetts Institute of Technology released a beta version of App Inventor, which allows even simpletons to make apps for Android phones."Do-it-yourself apps: Make your own Angry Birds | The Economist
Friday, July 20, 2012
"If Microsoft had not had to defer a portion of its Windows sales — $540 million in this case — its Windows revenue would have declined 1 percent, still a dismal performance that underscores the challenges in the traditional computer business right now.Microsoft Reports 4th-Quarter Loss After a Write-Down - NYTimes.com
Sales in the PC market have stagnated as consumers have diverted their technology spending to more exciting technologies, including smartphones and tablet computers like the iPad. Microsoft and other companies in the PC industry are hoping to reignite growth in the business with the release of Windows 8, an operating system that has been revamped to work better on touch-screen devices."
"Analysts scrambled to make sense of Google’s earnings report because for the first time it included Motorola, but not full quarterly results for the device maker because the acquisition closed May 22. Motorola lost $233 million on $1.25 billion in revenue during that period — results that analysts called “frightening.”Google Continues Growth in Second Quarter - NYTimes.com
Patrick Pichette, Google’s chief financial officer, asked investors to give Google time to do its homework on Motorola. The addition of Motorola’s 20,293 employees nearly doubled Google’s head count."
"Microsoft is a company that divides opinion, which may explain why it has hired Mark Penn, a political strategist and pollster who served as senior strategist for Hillary Clinton's 2008 presidential campaign, as its new corporate VP for strategic and special projects.Microsoft hires former Hillary Clinton adviser as top strategist • The Register
"Mark has an incredible background in research, demographics, marketing and positioning and a proven history in developing unique insights that drive success," Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer said via press release. "With a strong set of products and an exciting pipeline for the next year, Mark's experience and out-of-the-box thinking will help us more effectively reach new consumers and grow market share.""
"To get supporters even more engaged, the Obama and Romney campaign sites encourage supporters to download apps, which they can do directly on Facebook or when they log in to the campaign sites with their Facebook account. Obama's app goes further than Romney's; for example, through the president's app, which has been downloaded by 150,000 people, the campaign can access the birth dates, locations, shared photos, and "likes" of millions of Facebook "friends" of those supporters. (The friends could avoid this by changing their privacy settings in Facebook, but the default settings make this possible, and, according to a Consumer Reports survey, almost two-thirds of Facebook users do not change such settings.)"Why Obama Likes Facebook - Technology Review
Thursday, July 19, 2012
"The truth that we have all come to realize within the lifecycle of the Mini is that Google is not a search company. In 2012, search exists as a shortcut for us to help Google target advertising. It is difficult to see how GSA supports that aim, and as such, I wonder whether the yellow box will follow its little blue brother into the sunset some day."Farewell Google Mini - What Next for Google Search Appliance? Real Story Group Blog
"For years, Microsoft Corp. has been dedicated to helping create a safe computing environment for children and ensuring that Microsoft technologies are not used to conduct crime digitally. As part of its ongoing research and development in this area, Microsoft recently awarded six grants to research teams at universities across North America interested in better understanding the role technology plays in commercial child sex trafficking. The groups will share funding from Microsoft to advance deeper understanding of the technologies involved in the advertising, selling and purchasing of children for sex. "Shedding Light on the Role of Technology in Child Sex Trafficking [Microsoft Presspass]
"Over all, digital books kept up their explosive growth in 2011, the survey confirmed. Publishers’ net revenue from sales of e-books more than doubled last year, reaching $2.07 billion, up from $869 million in 2010. E-books accounted for 15.5 percent of publishers’ revenues.Survey Shows Growing Strength of E-Books - NYTimes.com
But as digital revenue grew, print sales suffered, dropping to $11.1 billion in 2011 from $12.1 billion in 2010."
"I asked if he was working at “Meet the PlayBook,” a two-week long extravaganza aimed at familiarizing potential customers with the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet. He replied, “Yes. You should come check it out. There’s going to be free drinks and fried chicken.”"RIM Throws a PlayBook Party, But the PlayBook's an Afterthought - Businessweek
"Today, Sony introduced the latest additions to its Walkman series, the F800 and E470. The Walkman F800 runs Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, so not only can it act as your entertainment device, you can also use it for email, Web browsing or casual gaming."Sony Announces New Walkman Music Players - Bonnie Cha - Product News - AllThingsD
"Earlier this month, Microsoft promised to ship Windows 8 sometime in October. Today, it announced the official date of the operating system’s arrival: October 26, 2012."Windows 8 to Ship October 26 - John Paczkowski - News - AllThingsD
"But what does this mean for the future of Office for Mac and iOS users? Macworld has learned that when the new Office launches, Microsoft will deliver an update to Office for Mac 2011. With this update, Office for Mac licenses can count as part of an Office 365 Home Premium subscription, making it possible to access your Office documents in the cloud.Microsoft provides details on future of Office for Mac and iOS - Macworld Australia
Those using iOS devices will also have access to these online applications. Office Mobile will work with Windows Phones, Android phones and iOS devices. Details weren’t forthcoming on Monday, but Microsoft will likely have more to say about Office Mobile within the next year. The company had no comment on when we might expect a Mac equivalent of Office 2013."
See LiveSide.net for more details and screen shots
- "Far richer editing - the Word Web App has an all new page layout with much greater formatting capabilities. PowerPoint now supports creating transitions and animations. Excel has dramatically improved chart rendering and an all-new Interactive View that brings the power of Excel to any table of data on the web. OneNote has better navigation and search.
- Web Apps wherever you go - the Web Apps are now available on a broader set of devices, browsers and sites. They work great on the latest browsers, including new "touch-friendly" UI controls. Our mobile interface has been redesigned to take advantage of today's smartphone capabilities. The Web Apps are integrated with more services you use all the time, like Exchange, Lync, and Facebook.
- Collaboration and sharing - you can now co-author in all four Web Apps (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote). We've also integrated commenting and sharing into the Web Apps hosted on SkyDrive and Office 365."
Office Next - Office and the Cloud
Wednesday, July 18, 2012
"I can't remember being as anxious to receive a new gadget as I am to get my Nexus 7 tablet. Word has started hitting the social networks that some are receiving their Nexus 7 already, while others are hearing nothing. "Google: Your Nexus 7 will ship this week or next | ZDNet
"The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of twenty-five newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In today's first granted patent report we focus entirely on a single patent that represents another major iPhone and iOS interface victory for Apple. Some may be bored to hear about it, many will moan, groan and shout that the patent system is broken because of it. Yet to Apple's legal team, it's simply music to their ears. Apple reinvented the smartphone, and today they get another patent victory to celebrate that fact. Wherever you are Steve, Cheers! "Apple Wins another Major iPhone & iOS Interface Patent - Patently Apple
"For regular consumers this means that with a Nexus device, you'll always get access to the latest and greatest software from Google that's available. So if having access to Google's latest software is your priority, then I'd agree that the Nexus is the right phone for you.Should I wait for a new Nexus smartphone? | Mobile - CNET News
With that in mind, should you buy the Galaxy Nexus or wait for a new Nexus phone to be introduced? Since you aren't due for a subsidized phone until October, I'd say you have some time. And that's a good thing. Because my guess is that Google will likely introduce at least one new Nexus phone before the end of the year. And rumor has it could introduce two or three others."
"Although MOOCs [massive open online courses] will have to be self-sustaining some day — whether by charging students for credentials or premium services or by charging corporate recruiters for access to the best students — Ms. Koller and university officials said that was not a pressing concern.Consortium of Colleges Takes Online Education to New Level - NYTimes.com:
About two-thirds of Coursera’s students are from overseas, and most courses attract tens of thousands of students, an irresistible draw for many professors. “Every academic has a little soapbox, and most of the time we have five people listening to us,” said Scott E. Page, a University of Michigan professor who taught Coursera’s model thinking course and was thrilled when 40,000 students downloaded his videos. “By most calculations, I had about 200 years’ worth of students in my class.”"
'via Blog this'
"Coursera provides free online classes that are available to anyone, worldwide, with an Internet connection. Although Coursera is less than a year old, it already has enrolled 680,000 students, most from outside the United States. It competes with edX, a joint venture of Harvard and MIT, and also with Udacity, another Silicon Valley startup headed by Stanford computer science professor and Google fellow Sebastian Thrun."So Long Stuffy Lecture Halls: Coursera Just Tripled Its Digital Campus - Forbes
Apple Analyst: iPad Mini, iTV Are For Real Mashable Apple Analyst: iPad Mini, iTV Are For Real | The top source for social and digital news [Mashable]
"Good news for those of you itching to get your hands on a 7-inch Apple tablet or an Apple television set — one of the industry’s top analysts expects you’ll see both within the year.Apple Analyst: iPad Mini, iTV Are For Real Mashable Apple Analyst: iPad Mini, iTV Are For Real | The top source for social and digital news
Gene Munster of Piper Jaffray told attendees at the Fortune Brainstorm Tech conference in Aspen that an iPad Mini was “highly likely,” and that he had talked to manufacturers in Asia who are already supplying Apple with components for what we’re still tentatively calling the iTV.
“The TV thing is real,” Munster said. “It’s just a function of time. Some suppliers are more open in talking about it than others.”"
"Users running those operating systems will not be able to advance beyond Office 2010, the suite that launched about seven months after Windows 7.Windows XP and Vista: No Office 2013 for you - Computerworld
The omission of the two operating systems means that more than half of all Windows computers -- 54.6%, to be exact -- now in place will be locked out of the upgrade, according to statistics compiled by Web metrics company Net Applications."
Tuesday, July 17, 2012
"The importance of Office 2013 to Microsoft’s bottom line can’t be understated, and yet the company faces no small amount of ridicule amid questions of whether the productivity suite is “relevant” any longer. With Windows 8 fast approaching, and long-standing arguments over whether tablets are for content creation or merely consumption, Office or its Metro-styled MX variant for Windows RT slates hasn’t necessarily proved the selling point Microsoft may have hoped it might. The company already has that wildcard, though, and it’s been fermenting away under Microsoft’s nose for a decade."OneNote MX should be Microsoft’s Windows 8 content creation hub - SlashGear
"For the first Nexus tablet, Google can sell it at cost (or close to it), just like Amazon. But Google doesn’t have Amazon’s ecosystem, its vast store of physical products and digital content that the Kindle Fire helps sell. Sooner or later, this could force Google to make tablets “for their own sake”, as a money-making business unit.Business Model Dances | Monday Note
Or they could stick with the current Android strategy: An OEM platform that runs zillions of devices, all with the same goal: Expose the consumer to Google services, to the radiation of its advertising business, all the time, everywhere, on any device.
Or , like Microsoft, end up in a neither here nor there crack of the business model space."
Google Official Blog: Google Ideas: joining the fight against drug cartels and other illicit networks
Evidently serious about the “better world” mission
“We think Google can help. Eighteen months ago we launched Google Ideas with the belief that Google is in the unique position to explore the role that technology can play in tackling some of the toughest human challenges in the world. Our first area of focus was counter-radicalization; last year we convened the Summit Against Violent Extremism with former gang members, right-wing extremists, jihadists and militants as well as survivors of violent extremism. Among the many outcomes of the summit was a platform that we established as a one-stop shop for tackling violent extremism through formers and survivors.
Recently, we’ve expanded our focus to include violent illicit networks such as narco-trafficking, human trafficking, organ harvesting and arms dealing. We believe that technology has the power to expose and dismantle global criminal networks, which depend on secrecy and discretion in order to function. And for the past few months, we’ve been working with people fighting on the front line to gain a better understanding of what drives these networks and how they function.”
Search Engine Land: Ironically, Search Might Be Less A Priority At Yahoo As Google’s Marissa Mayer Takes The Helm
"Wow. Wow. Wow. That’s all that keeps running through my head as I digest the news that long-time Google executive Marissa Mayer is to take over as president and CEO of Yahoo. Smart move for Mayer. Smart move for Yahoo. And as I’ll explain more, perhaps a move that finally takes Yahoo out of the search game, but takes it out in a smart way."Ironically, Search Might Be Less A Priority At Yahoo As Google’s Marissa Mayer Takes The Helm
Paul Maritz Out As VMware CEO And Mentioned As Candidate For Top Spot At EMC Or Cloud Foundry Spin Off | TechCrunch
"Paul Maritz is out as the CEO of VMware and will be replaced by EMC COO Pat Gelsinger.Paul Maritz Out As VMware CEO And Mentioned As Candidate For Top Spot At EMC Or Cloud Foundry Spin Off | TechCrunch
Maritz spent four years at VMware. It’s uncertain what he will do but rumors have swirled all day about about his departure.
CRN has a story that puts Gelsinger in charge of VMware with Maritz taking the top spot at EMC. "
EXCLUSIVE: Marc Andreessen Is Stunned That Yahoo Was Able To Get Someone So Talented As Marissa Mayer - Business Insider
"So you think Mayer is a great hire. Why?EXCLUSIVE: Marc Andreessen Is Stunned That Yahoo Was Able To Get Someone So Talented As Marissa Mayer - Business Insider
She's a proven manager at scale. She knows how to run these companies at scale. There aren't that many product managers in our industry who can manage at scale.
She's a proven product leader.
She knows the Internet inside out.
A lot of people who may have had those first two may not have the third."
"Schmidt opened the dialogue with a predictably optimistic take on how technology and access to information has increased productivity and quality of life worldwide. Thiel responded by commending Schmidt for "doing a fantastic job" as "minister of propaganda" for Google.Thiel tells Schmidt: 'Google is out of ideas' | Crave - CNET
And so it seemed the gloves were off before they ever went on."
"Nokia is entitled to point to excellent customer satisfaction ratings from Lumia owners. 93 per cent of Lumia 900 owners say they would recommend them to their friends and 85 per cent would make a repeat purchase, according to Nielsen. But there may be other explanations for this: the fanatical tribal brand loyalty exhibited when choosing an "outsider" brand, for example. Less charitably called Stockholm syndrome.It costs $450 in marketing to make someone buy a $49 Nokia Lumia • The Register
Long after Microsoft won the desktop war, small numbers of OS/2 users continued to hold out - no doubt giving high satisfaction scores and recommending the product to friends. If Ferragu is right, Windows Phone is going to become the smartphone world's OS/2."
"By releasing a smaller iPad, Apple could take the same strategy it took with the iPod, coming in all shapes and sizes to please customers who want smaller screens at lower price points.Enjoying the Google Nexus 7, but Yearning for a 7-Inch iPad - NYTimes.com
After experiencing the Nexus 7 for the last two weeks, and realizing the potential of an iPad with a seven-inch screen, I’ll be lining up to buy an iPad Mini."
Monday, July 16, 2012
"The first impression you get from the Nexus 7 is its top-quality build. The hardware is designed and built by ASUS, which routinely produces high-quality hardware at low price points, so the fact that it’s a tight, slim package that feels great in your hand isn’t much of a surprise. Its grippy, rubberized back is studded with dimples, like a golf ball. Which means that when you’re playing Scrabble in the park and you get so frustrated by the tiles you drew that you finally throw the Nexus with all of your might, the dimples will create that extra aerodynamic loft you’ll need to clear the row of benches and make it all the way into the pond."Nexus 7 a good rival for the iPad, in a compact size - Chicago Sun-Times
"Microsoft also won't be talking delivery dates today. But my sources -- who were right about the public beta of Office 15 hitting in July -- have said Microsoft's goal remains to release to manufacturing the final Office 15 client, servers and services before the end of calendar 2012, possibly around November."A new Microsoft Office, a new Microsoft Office division | ZDNet
"In response [to the market shift to non-stylus touch interfaces], Microsoft has made not one, but two new versions of OneNote. There's a regular desktop application that's a derivative of the current OneNote 2010 product and will run on both Windows 7 and Windows 8. There's also going to be a new, Metro-style OneNote application built for finger friendliness.First look: OneNote 2013 | Ars Technica
OneNote is one of only two applications in the Office 2013 suite getting this treatment (the other is the Lync client); all the other Office 2013 applications are straightforward desktop apps. We've had a chance to use the desktop application for a few days, and we'll look at the Metro-style application once it becomes available."
"Libin: We’re clear about this: we are not a big data company. We may have 34 million users, but we don’t have a big data set; we have 34 million small data sets. Our goal is to be smarter about your data. Our biz model is not about trying to monetize your information. our goal is to build products that you use and fall in love with. Yes, we want to do intelligence around data related to itself but we have no plans for cross-pollination of that data.Evernote Wants To Be The Automatic, Trusted Place To Store Your Life [Interview] | TechCrunch
The advantage of our business model is that we don’t have to think about money very much; our revenue comes from making great products; not anything else. Those who do have to think about advertising also think about making a great product but they have to look at the other side [the commercial side]. I don’t want to have big thoughts about the business model; just about the product."
"The magnitude of the changes underway at Google are revealed in shifting corporate priorities. Google's mission "to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful" is specific and direct where so many such statements are pompous and fatuous. But Google's statement also is becoming obsolete, even if execs are slow to admit it.How Google is becoming an extension of your mind | Internet & Media - CNET News
"I'm not sure we have to rush out and change our mission statement," co-founder Sergey Brin said in a conversation with a few reporters at the developer-oriented Google I/O conference in June. But today's statement is too narrow, he indicated: "In general, I think our mission is to use technology to really change the world for the better.""
"Nokia's stock touched a 17-year low last week and ended down 2.5% at €1.51 ($1.85) in Helsinki trading Friday. Its market capitalization of about €5.6 billion, or roughly $6.86 billion, represents a more than 95% decline from its peak days during the information-technology boom at the turn of the century.Nokia Cuts U.S. Price of Flagship Phone in Half - WSJ.com
The struggling handset maker's market capitalization is now lower than the $8.5 billion Microsoft paid for Internet phone company Skype Ltd. last year. Nokia is valued at roughly half of Apple's latest quarterly net profit."
"But Apple is hardly about to cede ground.Apple May Meet Tablet Competition With a Smaller iPad - NYTimes.com
The company is developing a new tablet with a 7.85-inch screen that is likely to sell for significantly less than the latest $499 iPad, with its 9.7-inch display, according to several people with knowledge of the project who declined to be named discussing confidential plans. The product is expected to be announced this year."
"We met at an Apple product announcement in Cupertino, Calif. She was helpful, smart and even funny, cracking sarcastic jokes and making me laugh. What more could a guy ask for?With Apple's Siri, a Romance Gone Sour - NYTimes.com
Since then, we have had some major communication issues. She frequently misunderstands what I’m saying. Sometimes she is just unavailable. Often, she responds with the same, repetitive statement.
Her name is Siri."
"So far, there are few signs Microsoft Office is being seriously dented by Google Apps.Microsoft Hits Back at Google - WSJ.com
Office continues to have more than a 90% market share for "business-productivity software," as the category is known, and more than an 80% share of corporate email, according to research firm Gartner Inc.
Microsoft's Office division also remains financially strong, delivering the biggest chunk of revenue and profits to the company.
For the nine months ended March 31, the division generated operating profit of $11.6 billion, or more than half of the company's total operating profit for the period.
Yet Microsoft appears to be ceding ground to Google in some respects."
Saturday, July 14, 2012
"THE thing software developers fear most is being "sherlocked". The term was coined in the early 2000s, after Apple updated the Sherlock search tool on its desktop operating system (OS) to do what had just months before been offered by an external application called Watson, created by Karelia Software to complement the Apple tool's earlier version. Ever since, independent programmers have trembled as they await announcements of what the company plans to includein the latest release."Operating systems: You've been sherlocked | The Economist
"If that were true, it would raise all sorts of amusing questions, as commenters on Cowen’s blog, Marginal Revolution, were quick to note. How do you pull over a driverless car? Does it sense the flashing lights and sirens and slowly move to the curb on its own? Or, if a human takes over, how does the cop know who was driving at the time of the infraction? If it was the computer, does the human still get the ticket?"Google self-driving car: What happens when police pull over autonomous cars?
I suppose the good news is that Windows Phone/Mobile together beat both Symbian and Palm/WebOS in the U.S. for Q2 2012…
“The latest report (for Q2) shows smartphone shares by both platform and vendor. The following graph is a treemap built with the Nielsen data:”
"The final nail in the coffin, said Mr. Rose, was that Digg became hobbled by technology problems as the site tried to move to a new database system on the fly around the same time as the summer 2010 re-launch. Since Digg was having problems in scaling its MySQL database software, it began to shift over to another open source system called Cassandra.Kevin Rose: Digg Failed Because 'Social Media Grew Up' - Digits - WSJ
“We launched with broken code,” he said. “There is nothing worse than screwing up and not being able to fix it. There was no Amazon Web services back when we launched. It would be a lot easier to build Digg today.”"
"It was as if Mr. Schmidt was saying: If there was any confusion before, Google is definitely in the hardware business.A Show-and-Tell With Google's Hardware - NYTimes.com
Not that he would call Google a “hardware company.” Mr. Schmidt used more encompassing language on Thursday, saying Google was “in the information business,” a label roomy enough to fit its giant search business, a new line of gadgets and everything in between."
Friday, July 13, 2012
"Speaking of which, Mary Jo is also reporting that Microsoft has recently delayed the release of its Office 2013 wave of products—which, yes, includes virtually everything under the Office umbrella, including all suites and applications, servers, online services, and more—has been delayed from early 2013 to mid-2013. And I can now confirm that report, with a source at Microsoft telling me that the entire wave of products has been delayed until May 2013. You may recall that Microsoft previously promised that it would deliver a public beta of Office 2013—then known by its codenamed Office 15—“this summer,” which gives them until late September, according to the calendar. But while the final version of the product wave has been delayed, it’s unclear whether that affects this first public preview. And then there’s Office RT—the version of Office that will ship as part of Windows RT, due in October—to consider: Does Windows RT now ship with a pre-release version of Office? My guess is yes, but we’ll have to wait for official word on that one."WinInfo Short Takes: July 13, 2012
"NPD's monthly report on the decline of physical video game sales is out and it's just as gloomy as last month's.Video game sales fall 29 percent, again | Brier Dudley's Blog | The Seattle Times
Sales of game discs, hardware and accessories fell 29 percent in June, including a 45 percent plunge in sales of game hardware. Total sales of physical games were $699.8 million, down from $989.5 million the year before."
About 40 to 50 percent of game sales are now digital -- downloads, microtransactions and the like. When those sales are added in, U.S. consumer spending on video games last month was around $1.36 billion, Baker said.
""When you look at Amazon, Google, Microsoft, they are more stable and more robust than anything a corporation would be willing to invest in," says Mike Cooke of Booz Co.The Sun Shines on 'The Cloud' - WSJ.com
Kay Kinton, a spokeswoman for AWS, says the company commissioned independent research from IDC that examined a small sample of AWS customers and found that four-fifths said their unplanned downtime dropped after they moved operations to the cloud. On average, the downtime fell to 1.50 hours per user per year from 5.40 hours. The firms reported a 70% cost savings from shifting operations to cloud computing, Ms. Kinton says."
"Once massive and influential, 7-year-old Digg has receded in recent times, but still has more than 16 million monthly unique visitors. It will be combined with Betaworks’ social news summary email service and app, News.me.Betaworks Buys Digg Assets and John Borthwick Becomes CEO - Liz Gannes - Social - AllThingsD
The Wall Street Journal is reporting that the deal was worth just $500,000, a massive decline in value, considering that the company had raised $45 million. Digg CEO Matt Williams disputed that figure, saying “the overall consideration is significantly larger,” and that it was a combination of cash and equity."
"As it turns out, even the Nexus Q itself isn't convinced that users will get enough bang for their buck. I know because I asked it.Review: Google's Nexus Q - Technology Review
A hidden feature within the Q allows it to act like a Magic 8 Ball—tapping repeatedly on the Nexus Q icon in the settings for your Nexus Q within the accompanying app (rather than the settings for the app itself) brings up a page that says "Have a dilemma? Ask the Q."
"Do you honestly believe you're worth $299?" I asked.
"I am not sure right now," was its slightly feminized, robotic-sounding reply."
Thursday, July 12, 2012
""We must go beyond our constricted awareness into an expanded awareness, and ultimately into our unbounded awareness, which has no limits in space and time, and we will have come here for the true purpose that we came: To feel, to be happy, and to serve each other," he [Deepak Chopra] pontificated to the slightly gob-smacked audience."Microsoft hires hippy to lecture resellers on being nice to the world • The Channel
Objective-C Is Kicking Butt in the Programming World - Application Development - News & Reviews - eWeek.com
"Objective-C, the language of the Apple world of iOS and the Mac OS X, recently overtook C++ in a key index that measures the most popular programming languages in use today. The TIOBE programming community index shows Objective-C as the third most popular programming language behind first-place C and second-place Java, suggesting that the popularity of mobile development is outpacing that of enterprise app development and building large high-performance systems—where Java and C++ typically reign."Objective-C Is Kicking Butt in the Programming World - Application Development - News & Reviews - eWeek.com
"I can’t understand sign language, and I speak way too fast for anyone to be able to read my lips. How did it go without a hitch? Thanks to a Google+ Hangout app announced by the Google Accessibility team last week, a sign language expert and a fantastic CART transcriptionist, Laura Brewer. All in real-time, all virtually."This Google+ Hangout Changed My Views On Communication
"Thanks to the power of its own homepage promotions and sheer consumer reach, Amazon shouldn’t have any trouble evangelizing its next foray into mobile hardware. But it takes much more than a few homepage ads to sell an unproven smartphone line — especially when so many people own smartphones already. Just ask Microsoft.
The upshot is that Amazon needs to whomp consumers over the head with an unprecedented line-up of new, novel features. Companies can no longer play catch-up in the mobile market, so to succeed in smartphones, Amazon needs to capture the hearts, minds and bank accounts of potential consumers."
12 Features the Amazon Phone Needs to Succeed | Gadget Lab | Wired.com
"The effort is part of the city’s larger goal of providing more digital inclusion for residents. And it’s also aimed at helping figure out the future of the city’s payphones, which are a source of complaints from many residents because they attract crime or are just plain ugly."New York starts turning payphones into free Wi-fi hotspots — Tech News and Analysis:
"Both Gartner and IDC singled out the thin laptop category known as ultrabooks for failing to lift the business. These devices were the PC industry’s answer to Apple‘s MacBook Air, the superslim aluminum notebook that has been a strong seller. Intel, the chip maker whose products power most Windows PCs, plowed a fortune into the development of technologies useful for ultrabooks to encourage its PC customers to make more of the computers."Some Ultra Disappointments for Computer Makers - NYTimes.com
"It’s hard to overstate how thoroughly this move will shake up the retail industry. Same-day delivery has long been the holy grail of Internet retailers, something that dozens of startups have tried and failed to accomplish. (Remember Kozmo.com?) But Amazon is investing billions to make next-day delivery standard, and same-day delivery an option for lots of customers. If it can pull that off, the company will permanently alter how we shop. To put it more bluntly: Physical retailers will be hosed."Amazon same-day delivery: How the e-commerce giant will destroy local retail. - Slate Magazine
"Unless you’re still bound by the antiquated and frankly asinine idea that the iPad is not a content-creation device, Microsoft’s vision of the PC-plus world sounds an awful lot like the one that users of Apple products are already living in."Apple's Post-PC World Is Microsoft's PC-Plus Future - John Paczkowski - News - AllThingsD
Wednesday, July 11, 2012
"It looks like Amazon may be farther along in the process of putting out a smartphone than we thought.WSJ: Amazon Is Already Testing Smartphones With 4-5 Inch Displays - Business Insider
The Wall Street Journal reports that Amazon and its Asian suppliers are already testing smartphones with displays of four to five inches."
"So what about a Microsoft-developed phone? The company has downplayed that possibility in recent weeks, but Ballmer was more coy in response to the CRN question. From the article …Ballmer vows to challenge Apple, sidesteps phone question - GeekWire
When asked if Microsoft might make its own smartphone, Ballmer paused and then replied: “Right now we are working real hard on the Surface. That’s the focus. That’s our core. Look, we’ll see what happens. We have good partners with Nokia, [HTC] in the phone space. I love what we’ve got going on with the Surface. We are going to focus on Surface and our other Windows 8 Tablet partners and see if we can go make something happen.”"
Dropbox doubling the size of its pro plans, keeping prices the same | Technology News Blog - Yahoo! News
"These changes bring Dropbox's pricing more in line with its competitors, such as Amazon Cloud Drive, Google Drive, Microsoft SkyDrive, and Box. Google and Microsoft are still less expensive options, though, offering 100GB of storage for $60 and $50 a year, respectively. iCloud, Apple's Mac and iOS-specific cloud service, offers up to 50GB of storage for $100 a year."Dropbox doubling the size of its pro plans, keeping prices the same | Technology News Blog - Yahoo! News
"Yesterday we heard that the Sprint Galaxy S III was in the midst of getting a small "security" update over-the-air, but with little detail of what exactly was changed. The jury is still out about any security fixes, but one thing that was changed is that you can no longer use the Google search bar to search for local content on the device. This comes on the heels of yet another legal battle between Apple and Samsung, where the unified search ability was enough to get the Galaxy Nexus on a do-not-sell list for about a week."Sprint's Galaxy S III update removes local search abilities | Android Central
"“Surface is just a design point,” Ballmer said. “It will have a distinct place in what’s a broad Windows ecosystem. And the importance of the thousands of partners that we have that design and produce Windows computers will not diminish. We have a mutual goal with our OEM partners to bring a diversity of solutions, Windows PCs, phones, tablets, servers to market. And what we seek to have is a spectrum of stunning devices, stunning Windows devices. So, every consumer, every business customer can say, ‘I have the perfect PC for me.’ … We’re excited about the work our OEM partners are doing on Windows 8.”"Ballmer: "Surface Is Just a Design Point" - John Paczkowski - News - AllThingsD
"After testing the Nexus 7 for a couple of weeks, I consider it the best Android tablet I’ve used. It’s a serious alternative to both Apple’s larger $499 iPad and to a more direct rival: Amazon’s $199, Android-based, 7-inch Kindle Fire. I prefer the Nexus 7 to 7-inch models from Google partners like Samsung, whose comparable product costs $250."Google Nexus 7 Tablet Review - Walt Mossberg - Personal Technology - AllThingsD
Tuesday, July 10, 2012
"If you're an Android geek, you're probably sick of hearing about Android's "fragmentation" problem. If you have a non-Nexus Android phone, you're probably even sicker of dealing with it. We've heard promises from Google time and time again, but it's time to bite the bullet and accept that for us Android geeks, the Nexus is the only phone worth buying."Frustrated by Android Fragmentation? Just Buy the Nexus Already
"In summary, Hadoop is an incredible tool for large-scale data processing on clusters of commodity hardware. But if you’re trying to process dynamic data sets, ad-hoc analytics or graph data structures, Google’s own actions clearly demonstrate better alternatives to the MapReduce paradigm. Percolator, Dremel and Pregel make an impressive trio and comprise the new canon of big data. I would be shocked if they don’t have a similar impact on IT as Google’s original big three of GFS, GMR, and BigTable have had."Why the days are numbered for Hadoop as we know it — Cloud Computing News