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Monthly Archives: March 2009

Apple’s App store taken over by Pirates

The iPhone's Application Store is becoming a target for pirates who have illegally cracked twenty percent of paid applications. The App Store offers about 25,000 paid apps, and it is estimated that over 5,000 have been pirated. This is  a real problem that developers, Apple and the community need to address. It is unclear how much piracy affects App Store sales. The economic impact of software piracy is tens of billions of dollars according to The Business Software Alliance. According to the study, f the amount of software piracy were reduced 10 percent over four years, the end result would be $41 billion in economic growth. There are websites that host dozens of pirated iPhone apps, such as The Monkeys Ball, recently relaunched with 80 cracked apps. The Monkeys Ball promotes its site as "trials" to download,... --

Google forms new Venture Fund for start-up firms

Google is forming a $100 million fund to invest in early-stage start-up firms. While fully owned by Google, Google Ventures will operate as a separate entity and will seek investment  opportunities to maximize returns. Google Ventures will look at a wide variety of companies to invest in, including information technology, health care and biotech, and consumer Internet products. Google Ventures has already invested in Silver Spring Networks, a company that uses technology to improve the efficiency of power grids. Rich Miner and Bill Maris are the fund's two managing partners.  "Just as we were founded by entrepreneurs, we think we can help some of those next entrepreneurs with the next great idea," said Miner. In the past, Google has invested in other companies through Google.org. Maris said that Google Ventures will now function as Google's "primary vehicle"... --

Skype Announces Service available for iPhone, soon BlackBerry

As part of its effort to expand beyond desktop computers Skype is planning to launch its service for iPhone users tomorrow and for BlackBerry users in May. Skype users were mostly lured by the promise of cheap and sometimes free calls made using its computer application. There are high hopes for the application's success on iPhone as its expected Skype's most feature-rich mobile offering to appeal to new and existing customers. "The No. 1 request we get from customers is to make Skype available on iPhone. There's a pent-up demand," Skype Chief Operating Officer Scott Durchslag said These new applications give Skype a chance to boost its mobile phone position, which has been weak compared to that of sites such as Facebook, Myspace or Twitter. One of Skype's features is subscribers can use to the phone numbers... --

Google Launches Music Download service in China

Google launched free downloads of licensed songs in China today, while sharing advertising revenues earned with major music labels. baidu.com leads google as a search market by holding more than 60 percent of the market, in part because Google lagged in the mainland search market was because it did not offer music downloads. The new service offers downloads of approximately 300,000 chinese and foreign artists. Music from artists signed by Warner Music, Sony Music, and Universal Music will be available on the service.  Users will be able to search by artist, song name and even musical measurements. IFPI said last year  the country's legitimate music market accounts for less than 1 percent of global recorded music sales.  The music and service offered through google will be of a higher quality than any pirated version around, and this... --

Power Meters uses Twitter to report Energy Consumption

There are twittering athletes, celebrities, and now even appliances are getting into the twittering craze. The Tweet-a-watt kit from Adafruit Industries lets users post the energy consumption of their refrigerator, TV, any appliance set daily to thier Twitter account. The idea, which won the Greener Gadgets Competition earlier this month, is now on sale for 90.00.  There is a joy in publishing one’s own daily kilowatts when Twitter users can compete for the lowest Watt numbers and also see how they’re usage compares to their friends. Tweet-a-watt builds on a  power monitor  called Kill-a-Watt. Kill-a-Watt is a power meter that assesses how efficient they are and display consumption by the kilowatt.  Tweet-a-Watt takes that gadget to the next level by using a networking receiver so users can transmit power usage information to a computer receiver.  The receiver... --

Entrepreneurs find success in Gadget Startups

Consumer electronics startups are the new frontier for entrepreneurs. Once thought to be an expensive business skewed in favor of large companies with nearly unlimited access to capital, the business is attracting entrepreneurs who think small and move quickly. And they're changing the consumer electronics landscape. In some cases, these gadget startups have led to multimillion-dollar paydays for these hardware entrepreneurs. An example of this are two business partners James Park and his Eric Friedman. Both created a fitness gadget called Fitbit that would be part pedometer, part wellness tracker. They started with a great idea and wanted to build the next big thing in the gadgets business. The fitness junkies were tossing ideas around a gadget that would track not just physical activities but could also log sleep patterns. In effect, they wanted device that would... --

Why do I have this machine? Things to Do With a Netbook

For simple browsing, e-mailing and perhaps even listening to music, the little laptops are ideal anything. Work related tasks however, are another story. Here are the top 5 (non work) uses for the netbook Photo Assistant Compare using a netbook to having to purchase extra memory cards that can run about 70.00 each. A netbook is tiny, and can be thrown into any travel bag. The screen is large enough for editing, and all netbooks have SD card readers built in. Netbooks for sale have around 160GB hard drive so there’s plenty of space for your photo editing needs. Traveling Researcher Netbook is great if you like hanging out in Wi-Fi bars while on travel. Any question you have could be checked. It sounds simple but the change this makes to a conversation is incredible, if impossibly nerdy. Clock Download a clock screensaver... --

AT&T Joins With Music Industry to Fight File Sharing

"AT&T, one of the nation's largest Internet service providers, confirmed on Tuesday the company is working with the recording industry to combat illegal file sharing. At a digital music conference in Nashville, Jim Cicconi, a senior executive for AT&T told the audience that the ISP has begun issuing takedown notices to people accused of pirating music by the Recording Industry Association of America, according to one music industry insider who was present. In December, the RIAA, the lobbying group of the four largest recording companies, announced the group would no longer pursue an antipiracy strategy that focused on suing individuals, but rather would seek the help of broadband providers to stem the flow of pirated content. The RIAA said an undisclosed number of ISPs had agreed to cooperate but declined to name them. This is... --

Linux Servers?

"I am working with a couple of large companies that are purchasing web and collaboration software stacks from Microsoft, IBM and others. These are for thousands of end users and are (supposedly) ready for multiple data center deployment and other big-corp requirements. I have suggested some open source alternatives such as Liferay and Drupal, and the technical people are interested but management types are not. They have given a few reasons, such as concerns over supportability and enterprise-readiness, but my feeling is that they are being won over by FUD from large vendors and the fact that most corps do not have significant deployments of FOSS technologies beyond Linux yet. All this seems to be in line.  So my questions are: How have you persuaded larger enterprises to adopt server-side OSS, beyond server-room Linux and... --

Songbird Bug Accidentally delete iPods songs

A critical bug has been discovered that deletes all music from an iPod when it's connected to The songbird Media Player.

The problem lies with an add-on that can delete or corrupt music from your iPod. At this time, the problem is only affecting a small number of users. Songbird has pulled the add-on from its recommended list. However users are still letting their anger be known on Songbird's site. Complaints range from lost music to posts that if Songbird wants people to use their product, they have to provide something worth using. Some say they are going back to itunes. That’s bad news for Songbird, especially since its trying to position itself as an iTunes replacement.... --


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