This suits Johansen just fine. He’s still strongly opposed to DRM, particularly because he believes it punishes consumers rather than prevents piracy. “People use my programs to put iTunes songs on non-iPod players,” he said. “They’re playing these files legally. Companies shouldn’t use the law to prevent consumers from doing something legal.”
It’s a story that shows just how far the giants of the internet must go to ensure that their services can reliably juggle traffic from hundreds of millions of people across the globe. It wasn’t just that Facebook had to replace the foundation of its social network—now used by more than 1.35 billion people across the globe. The company had to create a new kind of foundation.
In the print world, book length is limited by the cost of paper, printing and distribution. On the internet, where production costs are close to zero, length equals profit. VIP readers pay a couple of cents for every thousand characters (a print novel generally has 250,000 characters). Contracted authors are paid seven to 12 dollars per thousand characters, depending on their clout. Zhang Muye gets 12 dollars per thousand.
Yet when we talk again in early March, he sounds jaded. “It’s a massive enterprise of deterrence and prevention in which we are subsumed,” Wilson says by phone. “It’s like the nightmare of a startup with the added complication that no one will allow you to do it anyway.”
Abelltolls.com recently revealed how MCI, the nation’s second largest long-distance carrier, might be paying for Jordan’s and Tweety’s services: The company has hiked the rates for its most popular calling plan and consumers are reporting they received no prior notice to the price changes.
Once you’re done with training, you reach the Novice 1 rank. The site then shares with you what other people have identified in the photos. It will also tell you if you’re the first to view an image. The more images you mark, the higher your rank. I’m guessing that if enough people think that a site has some significance and is worth checking out, especially if many people of high rank identified the same spot, it will be a good spot for the explorers to check out on the ground. Not every image has something to mark, however, and sometimes it can take a while for an image to display. So it is a great activity to do while doing something else.
They took the project online and the resulting website, which is still growing thanks to ongoing input by Seattle musicians and fans, has turned into a perfect example of the kind of sprawling, crowdsourced project that works perfectly online. By tapping into the knowledge of the crowd, Ratner and her friends are creating a sort of oral history of rock ‘n’ roll for their hometown that is quickly spreading beyond Seattle’s city limits.
That means that links have value. They are a type of currency, and the more links to your site you can attract, the better your chances of cracking the top 10 of results. This is especially important because about 90 percent of searchers looking to shop rarely venture past the first page.
Unfortunately, that has serious security implications and undermines government-led efforts to prevent hackers from hijacking the net’s naming system in order to scam users. Those sites would disappear in a process that security experts said would damage internet security.
Among the various booths at Wordstock, there are many small publishers trying to get the word out about their books. Tucked away near the Children’s Stage was Hartlyn Kids, a new company with children’s books about different countries. I chatted with Christine and Aisha about their books. They currently have two titles available: The Bamboo Dance, about the Philippines, and Adventures That Lead to Home, about India.
Code hosting giant GitHub has added a small but significant new feature to the site: the ability to create new files through the web interface. The change makes it easier for non-Git-savvy contributors to quickly and easily add files to a repository.
Some laptop computer owners have discovered an annoying quirk with their machines: Whenever users install certain Nortel security software, their computers’ screens turn blue and the laptops cease to work.
They’re not the only ones working on this, of course. Battle lines have been drawn to put web content on televisions as seamlessly as possible, with a decent selection of set-top boxes (Netgear, Vudu, Digeo Moxi HD DVR, SageTV, AppleTV, etc.) already capable of doing so in various ways. But for most consumers, the idea of watching web video without buying, installing, and administrating a set-top box will likely be more appealing – especially if it lets them use the same remote control and guide they already use for everything else. Panasonic’s new Viera television line displays YouTube and other web content through separate menus, which is a start, but it doesn’t integrate broadcast and web content into a single searchable guide, the way Rovi will.
Clearwire’s customers are now taking the carrier to task over its ambiguity. The complaint, filed earlier this month, focuses heavily on Clearwire’s advertising, which not only highlights the speed of the connection (“all but two of Clearwire’s plans propose a minimum Internet speed of 1.0Mbps”), but also the fact that there are no limits on data usage.
The Chinese government has said it will not use Windows 8, the latest version of Microsoft’s venerable desktop operating system.
The new printers also incorporate the ability to add photorealistic coloring — something that more common plastic printers can’t yet achieve. But while the glued paper is said to have a wood-like hardness, the arrangement of the layered paper grain will require special consideration for certain design layouts (this can affect other types of 3-D printers as well). And while the company says it is able to be drilled, tapped or screwed, its material properties are unknown compared to traditional materials like real wood or steel.
Despite the country’s current enthusiasm for entrepreneurship – President Thabo Mbeki has cited it as the key to halving South Africa’s unemployment rate by 2010 – the results so far have been lackluster. According to the 2003 Global Entrepreneurship Monitor survey, an annual study that ranks countries according to their performance, South Africa – rated 22nd out of 41 countries – was the only developing country to perform below average and not show any recent improvement.
So what do we actually know about this story? We know what Google is. And we know that Groupon is the white-hot deal site that has large tech and media companies salivating – not to mention the investment bankers it has hired to shop itself around.
Target, for example, is offering a free $5 gift card when shoppers spend $30 on school supplies and backpacks. Apple is giving away wireless Beats headphones with certain Mac computer purchases. Staples is promoting a chance to meet pop singer Katy Perry as part of its back-to-school promotions.