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Gaming Guru Jane Jensen: There's a Yen for Adventure
June 11, 2014
Adventure games, which play out much like an interactive story, have had an adventure in their own right. These games peaked in popularity during the late 1980s to the mid-1990s but in recent years have been in decline. When action and online role-playing games gained mass market appeal, story became secondary in many cases. However, story-driven adventures could be making a comeback.
Case Study: Software Security Pays Off for Heartland
May 14, 2014
Heartland Payment Systems has successfully leveraged software-assurance tools and best practices to drive better security within its IT organization -- and improve its overall business performance. In this podcast, Ashwin Altekar, director of enterprise risk management at Heartland, shares his insights and knowledge with Amir Hartman, the founder and managing director at MainStay.
Old Discs Get a Chance to Spin Again
February 18, 2014
One of the UK's go-to spots for selling entertainment products online, Entertainment Magpie is now setting its sights on the U.S. with the launch of In this podcast, we chat with CEO Steve Oliver about how the digital revolution affects a business model predicated on physical entertainment media.
Where Have All the Forests Gone?
November 23, 2013
Earlier this month, researchers published a report discussing global forest coverage, and supplementing their findings was a first-of-its-kind interactive mapping tool that was created in partnership with Google. In this TechNewsWorld podcast, we discuss the research with the study's lead author, geographer Matthew Hansen.
E-Booksellers Take a Walk on the Vile Side
November 9, 2013
Last month, British retailer WH Smith temporarily shuttered its site after people realized it was selling particularly objectionable sexual content. Meanwhile,, the Toronto-based e-reading company from which WH Smith got its material, announced that it was suspending distribution of all self-published e-books. Amazon also got into the act by removing numerous titles from its online shelves.
Measuring the Expanding Video Data Universe
November 4, 2013
Visible Measures measures via a massive analytics capability an ocean of video at some impressively high scales. By creating very deep census data of everything that's happened in the video space, Visible Measures uses unique statistical processes to figure out exactly what patterns emerge within video usage at high speed and massive scale and granularity.
When Film Distribution Fails, Piracy Wins
November 2, 2013
Last month, researchers at George Mason University's Mercatus Center launched a website,, to determine whether or not there are legal alternatives for viewing the world's most pirated movies. The researchers will quantify the validity -- or invalidity -- of copyright holders' claims that pirates are thieving material that is indeed available elsewhere.
The Winter Olympics of Russia's Discontent
October 12, 2013
Earlier this week, a team of investigative journalists in Russia compiled a dossier suggesting that the Russian government will be embarking on an ambitious surveillance regimen for the upcoming Winter Olympics, which will be held in Sochi, Russia, next February. In this podcast, Andrei Soldatov, one of the journalists who helped break this story, joins us from Moscow.
The Secrets of GTA's Massive Mainstream Success
September 28, 2013
It's not every day that a video game becomes a mainstream tech story. Then again, it's not every day that a video game promptly records $1 billion in sales. Grand Theft Auto V did just that, however, eclipsing the 10-figure mark three days after its Sept. 17 release. The game's success is an emphatic declaration that the GTA brand -- first introduced in 1997 -- is still going strong.
Someone to Watch Over You: London's Recycling-Bin Spies
August 31, 2013
In June, Renew London equipped a dozen recycling bins in England's capital city with technology to track people's smartphones as they milled about the city. The devices went largely unnoticed until the appearance of an August article entitled, "This recycling bin is following you." The piece set off a bit of a media storm as people realized their every move was suddenly capable of being scrutinized and stored away.
Why Oslo Is Off-Limits to Apple's Aerial Photographers
August 22, 2013
Apple's taken plenty of flak for its mapping system, and some of it is well-deserved. After all, the maps have erroneously led drivers into the middle of nowhere and shown buildings that appear as though they're melting. Don't blame Apple if its images of Oslo, Norway, aren't crystal-clear, however. That one's not on Apple. Norway has denied Apple the license required to take aerial photos of Oslo.
Legal Piracy: Antigua's Desperate, Fearless Ultimatum
August 17, 2013
About six years ago, the World Trade Organization sided with the itty-bitty Caribbean island of Antigua on its claim that the United States' ban on overseas remote gaming violated international trade agreements. The WTO upheld its ruling last winter, confirming once and for all that the island could suspend its obligations to certain U.S. intellectual property rights.
Porn, the UK and Search Engines' 'Moral Duty'
August 3, 2013
Britain's crusade against online pornography has ramped up. Prime Minister David Cameron recently gave a speech saying the pornography was "corroding childhood" and declared that every household in the UK should have pornography blocked by Internet service providers -- unless, that is, the homeowners specifically opt in to pornographic content.
How the US-French Connection Became a Digital Divide
July 20, 2013
Earlier this week, reports surfaced that the United States had thwarted France's plans to propose new international tax regulations targeting digital companies like Google and Amazon. This podcast examines France's philosophy toward tech giants and discusses whether or not France's annoyance with U.S. tech companies has anything to do with the fact that they are, well, from the U.S.
Everybody Loves Data Protection
July 2, 2013
In early June, the EU agreed to a "business-friendly" privacy proposal, but that did nothing to stop the privacy debate in Europe. Since then, a federal court in Germany held Google liable for autocomplete suggestions; France threatened to fine Google unless it changed its ways; and an advisor to the European court of Justice allowed Google to keep sensitive information in its search index.
Weighing the Importance of Google's Waze Win
June 18, 2013
After months of courtship, social navigation app Waze ultimately chose to partner -- for $1 billion-plus -- with Google, rejecting Facebook and Apple. The price tag shows how valuable Waze has become, and that's to say nothing of the overtures it received from the world's tech giants. "I think what's really surprising is that Facebook allowed the deal to die," said tech correspondent David Shamah.
Power to the Wiki-People
April 20, 2013
Earlier this month, agents for France's top intelligence agency were accused of trying to force a Wikipedia volunteer to remove a Wikipedia page describing a French military radio relay station. The volunteer, a library curator, reportedly was threatened with jail unless he complied. Before any of the bullying took place, the DCRI had gone the conventional route, contacting the Wikimedia Foundation, which is Wikipedia's parent organization.
A Slam Dunk for College Basketball Stats
April 6, 2013
The contact page of Ken Pomeroy's website,, contains all the standard fare -- a disclaimer, an email address, a note for subscribers. Below that, however, there is a brief note for media members, and it's telling. It starts normal enough, with Pomeroy insisting he is happy to do interviews or help with stories and so on.
The UK's Bloody Mad Blogosphere Battle
March 30, 2013
News surfaced last week that the UK was mulling an overhaul of press regulations. The legislation, born out of the phone-hacking investigation known as the Leveson Inquiry, is designed, among other things, to better regulate online media. Alas, while trying to account for more media outlets, the legislation never bothered to define what it considered a media outlet.
China's Great Big Holey 'Twitter' Net
March 23, 2013
A recent study by researchers at the University of Hong Kong suggests that China's Twitter-like Sina Weibo -- which boasted in February that it had surpassed 500 million users -- might be overrun by zombie accounts. The study, which looked at a random sample of 30,000 Sina Weibo accounts, revealed that 57 percent of users had nothing in their timelines.
How Microsoft Became Denmark's Billion-Dollar Baby
March 9, 2013
Earlier this week, reports surfaced that Denmark was seeking $1 billion in back taxes from Microsoft. The case, the biggest ever pursued by the Danish tax authority, stems from Microsoft's 2002 purchase of the Danish company Navision. Microsoft promptly sold Navision to one of its subsidiaries in Ireland.
Inside the Hunt for Chinese Hackers
February 23, 2013
A recent report by Mandiant, a U.S. information security firm, has added an important new chapter to the discussion about cybersecurity -- and put China on the defensive. In chronicling the massive, years-long espionage campaign conducted by the People's Liberation Army Unit 61398, the report implicates the Chinese government and military.
Africa Is Not a Country - It's a Collection of Smartphone Markets
February 16, 2013
In recent weeks, Africa, of all places, has been a hotbed for smartphone news. Microsoft is teaming up with China's Huawei to launch an Africa-specific smartphone, the "4Afrika," and Nokia recently released what it described as an "entry-level smartphone" in South Africa. Duncan McLeod, the founder and editor of South Africa-based Tech Central, explains Africa's emergence as a viable smartphone market.
Online Gambling: The WTO Loads Antigua's Slingshot
February 2, 2013
Earlier this week, the World Trade Organization ruled that the nation of Antigua will be allowed to turn a blind eye to United States intellectual property rights. Put more technically, Antigua now has the right to suspend its obligations to American copyright, trademark and patent holders. The ruling stems from a decade-old U.S. decision to prohibit remote gaming.
Google, the EU and Competition: Speaking Different Languages
January 29, 2013
Back in December, European regulators warned Google that they expected concrete proposals to allay antitrust concerns by January. Well, January is almost over, and it sounds like regulators are still convinced that Google is abusing its search engine dominance. The European Commission is also investigating Google's attempts to seek and enforce injunctions against certain Apple and Microsoft products.
When Apple Met China
January 19, 2013
Apple CEO Tim Cook recently wrapped up his second trip to China in less than a year. While there, he met with regulators, declared that China would become Apple's biggest market, and talked shop with the nation's No. 1 mobile carrier, China Mobile. Apple has something of an identity crisis in China.
The UK's Tangled Antipiracy Web
January 12, 2013
In the battle against online piracy, industry and government officials tend to cast a wide net in blocking suspected piracy-enabling websites. Sometimes this process results in the removal of sites that have nothing to do with piracy. Last April, the UK ordered Internet service providers to block file-sharing site The Pirate Bay.
When Two Visions of the Internet Collide
December 22, 2012
Last week, the International Telecommunications Union wrapped up a huge conference on Internet regulations and governance. The UN-sponsored event featured a few hardened factions. Debate pitted Russia, China and several Arab states -- all promoting increased regulation of the Internet -- against the U.S., Canada, Australia and much of Western Europe -- all staunchly opposed to increased regulation.
Sex, Lies and Twitter
December 8, 2012
Last month, the BBC erroneously linked a prominent politician to a sexual abuse scandal. The network didn't name the politician -- but thousands of people on Twitter did. This prompted the politician, Alistair McAlpine, to vow legal action against those who tweeted or retweeted about the allegations. McAlpine has identified about 20 high-profile Tweeters.
European News Outlets Nipping at Google's Hand
November 17, 2012
Later this month, German legislators will take up debate on a bill extending copyright protection to snippets of news articles that appear in search engine results. Google has warned both Germany and France -- which has proposed similar legislation -- that it is not willing to play along, and will simply black out media outlets that try to levy such fees.
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