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Would You Let Your Data Sleep Over at Google's House?
April 28, 2012
A lingering cloud of Google vaporware finally condensed recently into an actual product. Google Drive has been a subject of speculation for years, but now the company's own cloud storage service is here for real. Google Drive lets anyone store a few gigabytes worth of data on Google's servers.
Larry vs. Larry
April 21, 2012
A San Francisco courtroom is presently the center ring in the worldwide tech IP litigation circus. While other legal battles over mobile device patents and copyrights are as down and dirty as ever in places like Germany, Australia, and elsewhere in the U.S., the fight between Oracle and Google over the alleged theft of Java technologies stands out due to its cast of characters.
The People vs. Apple
April 14, 2012
Apple has been accused of acting as ringleader of a price-fixing racket, enlisting half a dozen market-dominating companies in a conspiracy to profiteer through anticompetitive practices and artificial price inflation. The market: e-books. The U.S. DoJ sued Apple along with a handful publishers, accusing them of orchestrating a sales agreement that effectively changed the business model under which e-books were sold.
Google Gazes Into the Looking Glass
April 7, 2012
A while back we started hearing rumors about some kind of secret project Google was working on involving eyeglasses -- smart eyeglasses. You'd wear them like a normal pair of specs, but they'd somehow be connected to the Web, possibly through the Android phone in your pocket. And the lenses would display all kinds of information -- text and images relating to whatever it is you're looking at.
Another iThing, Another iTempest
March 24, 2012
The debut of the latest iPad was once again an orgy of revenue for Apple. The company claims 3 million were sold in the opening weekend, and that certainly does sound like a lot. But just as iPad sales are running hot, apparently so are the iPads themselves. Some users claim the devices are growing alarmingly warm in their hands during heavy use.
AT&T Flails in the Quicksand
March 17, 2012
The name of AT&T's pain, for this month anyway, is Matthew Spaccarelli. He's a customer that gave the carrier a small thumping in court, and that would have left AT&T with a very minor scab. But it seems the company just couldn't resist picking at it. It all started when Spaccarelli took AT&T to small-claims court over his smartphone data rate being throttled.
iPad: What's in a Name?
March 10, 2012
Apple finally drew the curtain on its next-generation iPad, revealing a device that looks a whole lot like last year's model but is definitely packing some heavier guts. First of all the screen is now a super-sharp Retina display, so named because theoretically you shouldn't be able to spot the individual pixels with a naked eye.
Google's Walls Come Crashing Down
March 3, 2012
If you've visited basically any of Google's major services over the last several weeks, you may have noticed a little orange box that pops up as soon as you get to the page, sometimes hanging out right over the spot you wish to click. "We're changing our privacy policy and terms. This stuff matters. Learn more or dismiss."
Apple Wanders Into Mountain Lion Territory
February 18, 2012
Apple let OS X Lion out of its cage just last July, but the company's already started talking up the next version of its operating system, which it'll call "Mountain Lion." The details and developer preview that Apple has come out with indicate that even more iOS DNA is being mixed into OS X this time around, with more shared features and functions.
The Whens, Whats and Hows of iPad 3
February 11, 2012
A Wall Street Journal report on Thursday gave Apple fans all the excuse they needed to indulge in some more speculation regarding the iPad 3 -- if that is its real name, and if whatever it is even exists. Apple's kind of tight-lipped about this stuff. At this moment in the tablet universe, it's hard to guess what kind of grand and monumental new features Apple would want to add to the iPad.
Facebook to Investors: You Like What You See?
February 4, 2012
Facebook's finally decided to take a head-first dive into the mountain of cash it's been standing on for years. Following several days of heated rumors and years of speculation about when CEO Mark Zuckerberg was finally going to cash in his chips, the company filed an S-1 statement with the SEC, paving the way for an IPO as early as this May.
Apple Does the Money Dance
January 28, 2012
pple's first fiscal quarter is usually a big one. The way its financial calendar works out, what it considers Q1 ends on Dec. 31, meaning it covers the entire holiday period, as well as maybe a little back-to-school action. But the numbers Apple posted about its most recent Q1 were in an entirely different class than the usual money bender it wakes up from this time of year.
SOPA Shellacked, PIPA Plastered
January 21, 2012
The Stop Online Piracy Act, otherwise known as "SOPA," is losing friends fast, and now it looks like there's a good chance it'll lose the support it needs to make it out of Congress alive, much less the White House. SOPA and its Senate bill cousin PIPA, the Protect IP Act, have been controversial from the beginning, but a recent round of protests have made them almost toxic.
Google's Nettlesome Search Gambit
January 14, 2012
Google has tuned up its search engine once again, but this time instead of shaving a couple of precious microseconds off its response time, it's decided to adjust some back-end systems in a way that changes the kinds of results people get, depending on who they are.
Barnes & Noble's Nook: Life Preserver or Dead Weight?
January 7, 2012
The arrival of the Amazon Kindle Fire gave Apple reason to worry, but it may have given Barnes & Noble a reason to completely freak out. Its Nook Tablet Android device arrived about a month after the Kindle Fire was announced, and the Nook may be in a much more vulnerable position than the iPad.
Verizon and Google Enter Holiday Party Late and Sulky
December 17, 2011
The Galaxy Nexus has finally arrived in the United States after showing up in places like Europe and Hong Kong several weeks ago. This is a Samsung smartphone running the very latest and greatest version of Android, Ice Cream Sandwich. And there are no factory-installed tweaks to the OS either -- it's straight Android, no mixer.
Twitter Rolls the Dice
December 10, 2011
When a social media site undertakes a major redesign, it's kind of like that scene in "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade." Drink from the right cup, and you're completely re-energized. But there are a lot of poor choices you can make, and drinking from any of the wrong cups will turn your site into a dried-out husk.
Tinkerer, Carrier, Rootkit, Spy
December 3, 2011
The company Carrier IQ became an overnight pariah this week after a security researcher published information suggesting that software it makes could potentially be used to significantly violate the privacy of millions of smartphone users. The researcher is Trevor Eckhart, and he said that the way Carrier IQ's application is used could allow it to tell your cellphone carrier all sorts of things.
Another Grim Week for RIM
October 29, 2011
Research In Motion continues its trend of getting beaten up week after week with more and more bad news. This time, it had to swallow three separate helpings of trouble affecting everything from its PlayBook tablet to its as-yet unborn BBX operating system. It's also going to have to deal with some fallout from the massive, days-long, world-wide service outage it suffered a couple of weeks ago.
Will Microsoft Get Lucky With Yahoo?
October 22, 2011
Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer recently commented on Yahoo's present situation by saying "Sometimes you're lucky." He was referring to his company's rebuffed attempt to buy Yahoo a few years ago for $47 billion. But that doesn't necessarily mean he thinks owning Yahoo now would be a bad idea -- perhaps all he meant was that by waiting a few years, Microsoft may be able to get Yahoo for a whole lot less than $47 billion.
The BlackBerry Blackout: Research In Commotion
October 15, 2011
The Great BlackBerry Blackout of '11 is clearing up, and not a moment too soon for users who rely on Research In Motion's technologies for critical business communications. The problems started early in the week for customers in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, then spread to India and South America before making its way into North America, including RIM's home turf in Canada.
The Fruits of Steve Jobs' Tireless Quest for Perfection
October 8, 2011
Steve Jobs' long battle with cancer came to a sad end Wednesday. The Apple cofounder, chairman and former CEO started his company from a garage, revolutionized the technology industry many times over, got fired from his own business, then came back years later to turn it into the most valuable publicly traded company in the world, all in just over a quarter of a century.
Amazon's Kindle Catches Fire
October 1, 2011
Amazon has launched what may become the first real threat to Apple's iPad. The Kindle Fire has been anticipated for many months now, but this week Amazon officially took the lid off and showed everyone what it's really about. For a device that could eventually loosen the iPad's stranglehold on the tablet market, the Fire's spec sheet doesn't exactly match that of an iPad 2.
The Board Giveth, the Board Taketh Away
September 24, 2011
I'm no HP historian, but it looks like the company must have just set a new personal record for how quickly it disposes of its CEOs. Less than a year after putting Leo Apotheker on the job, HP's board has sent him packing. The news became official a day after rumors began making the rounds that HP's board was looking for a replacement.
Can Yahoo Escape the Valley of the Dulls?
September 10, 2011
When the end of her stint as Yahoo CEO came for Carol Bartz, it arrived via a phone call from the company's chairman. That's what she told employees in a profanity-free, company-wide email when she learned the news. Bartz was fired after nearly three years as Yahoo's chief executive, having failed to turn around the once-great Internet company.
The Wedding Crashers
September 3, 2011
Nobody expected AT&T to have an especially easy time convincing regulators to allow it to buy up rival wireless carrier T-Mobile. AT&T announced its intentions last Spring to purchase the fourth-largest U.S. carrier from parent company Deutsche Telekom for $39 billion, and critics from all corners wasted no time expressing why they thought that would be a very bad idea.
The Lonely Life of WebOS
August 20, 2011
While the iPad remains king of the tablet market in terms of sales, it's getting stared down by a growing gang of competitors, most of which have taken sides with Google's Android operating system. Android tablets come in large and small, expensive and cheap, really nice and complete crap. There are a lot of them out there, but they all coalesce around that same Android platform. Then there are the rebels who go it alone.
The Patent World War
August 13, 2011
Even though Google lawyer David Drummond laid into Apple, Microsoft and Oracle in his public critique of their anti-Android patent lawsuits, it was Microsoft that really ended up tussling with the search giant on open ground. But that doesn't mean Apple and Oracle are easing up their own patent battles; so far, they're just saving their arguments for the courtroom.
Google and Microsoft Take It Outside
August 6, 2011
By just about any measure, the Android mobile platform is making a killing in the U.S. As of last March, comScore said over a third of U.S. smartphone subscribers use Android phones. Every major U.S. carrier supports Android phones, every major handset maker in the world not named "RIM," "Apple" or "Nokia" makes Android phones, and the platform's app selection is almost as ridiculously diverse as Apple's.
Anonymous, PayPal and WikiLeaks: The Grudge That Keeps On Grudging
July 30, 2011
Remember WikiLeaks? It's still around, it's still somewhat leaky, and it's still very much loved by the amorphous hacker entity known as "Anonymous." Anons and WikiLeaks both generally enjoy breaking down barriers of secrecy and scattering what they find into the public view, though they may tend to work with different styles.
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It's the best hope for advancing space exploration.
It's little more than a hobby for billionaires.
It will result in highly profitable new industries, like space mining.
It will dramatically increase space junk and pollution.
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It should be heavily regulated by governments.