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Archive for August 18, 2006

PCs Burning; Google This; Spammer’s Gold

August 18, 2006 Leave a comment

op Stories for the Week of August 14 – August 18

 The IBM PC turns 25 this week … but dude, is that your laptop burning? Turns out the PC’s most popular offspring are exploding and bursting into flames courtesy of faulty lithium-ion batteries, which has caused Dell to recall 4.1 million of the things – the largest consumer electronics recall in history (via Techdirt). But Engadget figures the recall could be even bigger still since battery manufacture was contracted out to Sony (hi there, Mac users!). And to think the authorities worry about airline passengers’ toothpaste and hemorrhoid cream, writes Gizmodo.

Meanwhile, Google’s lawyers asked major media companies to stop using “google” as a verb, despite the fact that the Oxford English Dictionary says it’s okay. How long before we hear that Larry Page must only be photographed from his good side, asks Valleywag-but Kottke proves Google has worried about this for three years and Scobleizer adds that Google’s lawyers aren’t evil, the company just needs to be seen defending its trademark, not be totally successful.

Also in this week’s Google Watch, the company updated Blogger.com, and users will soon be invited to switch from the current system to a slightly unstable beta, writes TechCrunch. Google Maps is offering local merchants the ability to add free, printable coupons to their listings-which is death for small newspapers, says BuzzMachine. Google added a video button to its search page-it’s not just a response to YouTube, but a nod to a market that wants as much video advertising as it can buy (via John Battelle). And And Google also busted out free WiFi for the public in Mountain View. Next up? San Francisco.

 Meanwhile, just as YouTube was basking in record-high Comscore numbers (it cracked to the top 50), its system crashed due to a database outage. The biggest question on the table has always been about YouTube’s business model; this outage made TechCrunch wonder whether the company can scale. The blackout was only six hours long, and these kinds of growing pains should be expected at a site that serves 100 million videos a day, says Mashable! Plus, the company is raking it in says YouTube co-founder Chad Hurley (via Lost Remote).

Speaking of growing pains, more unwanted press for AOL: the company successfully sued spam king and neo-nazi Davis Wolfgang last year for $12.8 million but has been unable to collect damages. So it’s now digging up the family’s backyard for gold and platinum bars it believes are buried there. Even bloggers couldn’t make this stuff up! Other news shorts: AllPeers, a Firefox extension for peer-to-peer filesharing is close to ready; Read/Write Web lets the rest of us in on the secret world of underground P2P networks (aka darknets); and more signs of the apocalypse Bubble 2.0: the domain name Wiki.com sold for $3 million.

Last week’s British liquids-and-gels bomb plot had BoingBoing wondering whether hair-gel bombs could really work-but why get complicated when a simple “piranha bath” will produce a big spattering mess? Meanwhile, Techdirt says we need a more El Al-style approach to passenger security and Turing Test for terrorists-tiny booths with high-tech biometric sensors that scan for fear of getting caught.

 Also in politics, despite Democratic efforts at unity following Ned Lamont’s primary victory over Joseph Lieberman, some senators will support Lieberman no matter what, including Mary Landrieu of Louisiana, says Huffington Post. And with friends like these-Landrieu recently threatened to punch out President Bush and blamed him for the New Orleans mayor’s decision to not use school buses for evacuation during Katrina (via Ramblings Journal). GOP candidates are also flailing: Senator and presidential hopeful George Allen of Virginia insulted an Indian-American man working for his Democratic opponent, writes Taegan Goddard. Of course Allen apologized (via ABC News), but too late-this was his Mel Gibson Moment says Andrew Sullivan.

Categories: Uncategorized

PCs Burning; Google This; Spammer’s Gold

August 18, 2006 Leave a comment

op Stories for the Week of August 14 – August 18

 The IBM PC turns 25 this week … but dude, is that your laptop burning? Turns out the PC’s most popular offspring are exploding and bursting into flames courtesy of faulty lithium-ion batteries, which has caused Dell to recall 4.1 million of the things – the largest consumer electronics recall in history (via Techdirt). But Engadget figures the recall could be even bigger still since battery manufacture was contracted out to Sony (hi there, Mac users!). And to think the authorities worry about airline passengers’ toothpaste and hemorrhoid cream, writes Gizmodo.

Meanwhile, Google’s lawyers asked major media companies to stop using “google” as a verb, despite the fact that the Oxford English Dictionary says it’s okay. How long before we hear that Larry Page must only be photographed from his good side, asks Valleywag-but Kottke proves Google has worried about this for three years and Scobleizer adds that Google’s lawyers aren’t evil, the company just needs to be seen defending its trademark, not be totally successful.

Also in this week’s Google Watch, the company updated Blogger.com, and users will soon be invited to switch from the current system to a slightly unstable beta, writes TechCrunch. Google Maps is offering local merchants the ability to add free, printable coupons to their listings-which is death for small newspapers, says BuzzMachine. Google added a video button to its search page-it’s not just a response to YouTube, but a nod to a market that wants as much video advertising as it can buy (via John Battelle). And And Google also busted out free WiFi for the public in Mountain View. Next up? San Francisco.

 Meanwhile, just as YouTube was basking in record-high Comscore numbers (it cracked to the top 50), its system crashed due to a database outage. The biggest question on the table has always been about YouTube’s business model; this outage made TechCrunch wonder whether the company can scale. The blackout was only six hours long, and these kinds of growing pains should be expected at a site that serves 100 million videos a day, says Mashable! Plus, the company is raking it in says YouTube co-founder Chad Hurley (via Lost Remote).

Speaking of growing pains, more unwanted press for AOL: the company successfully sued spam king and neo-nazi Davis Wolfgang last year for $12.8 million but has been unable to collect damages. So it’s now digging up the family’s backyard for gold and platinum bars it believes are buried there. Even bloggers couldn’t make this stuff up! Other news shorts: AllPeers, a Firefox extension for peer-to-peer filesharing is close to ready; Read/Write Web lets the rest of us in on the secret world of underground P2P networks (aka darknets); and more signs of the apocalypse Bubble 2.0: the domain name Wiki.com sold for $3 million.

Last week’s British liquids-and-gels bomb plot had BoingBoing wondering whether hair-gel bombs could really work-but why get complicated when a simple “piranha bath” will produce a big spattering mess? Meanwhile, Techdirt says we need a more El Al-style approach to passenger security and Turing Test for terrorists-tiny booths with high-tech biometric sensors that scan for fear of getting caught.

 Also in politics, despite Democratic efforts at unity following Ned Lamont’s primary victory over Joseph Lieberman, some senators will support Lieberman no matter what, including Mary Landrieu of Louisiana, says Huffington Post. And with friends like these-Landrieu recently threatened to punch out President Bush and blamed him for the New Orleans mayor’s decision to not use school buses for evacuation during Katrina (via Ramblings Journal). GOP candidates are also flailing: Senator and presidential hopeful George Allen of Virginia insulted an Indian-American man working for his Democratic opponent, writes Taegan Goddard. Of course Allen apologized (via ABC News), but too late-this was his Mel Gibson Moment says Andrew Sullivan.

Categories: Uncategorized