• Mounting Web Security Challenge
    As Web-based services continue to supplant desktop software at a rapid rate, and as service providers store ever-more sensitive user information, Web security becomes increasingly important. By now, AOL, Microsoft, Yahoo, Google and others have built and control many of the services-like email-that we've come to rely on, which makes them guardians of our most sensitive information. We already have sensitive business and personal information stored on the Web; just imagine if our health records, driver's license and passport information were too? They may be, one day. The scary thing is that Web-based services are grappling with security ...
  • Paris Association Petitions Government Via Second Life
    Second Life is the de facto playground for experiments in virtual world commerce. It's also become a location for grassroots activism. A Parisian association recently awarded a $1,000 prize to the Second Life citizen who designed the best redevelopment plan for a garden in the Les Halles district also attracted participants from China, Canada and Germany. The competition was set up by a local areas residents' association called Accomplir, which orchestrated the event to pressure the French government into speeding up the area's redevelopment. The organization is irate that residents were not consulted in the first place. ...
  • Apple, AT&T Defend The Network
    Chief executives Randall Stephenson of AT&T and Apple's Steve Jobs of Apple say they aren't worried about criticism of the 2G Edge network that Apple's iPhone will run on. The executives defend that decision as being the best one for both companies, given the current state of the mobile wireless industry. Interestingly, it's AT&T's Stephenson who touts the device's ability to tap into other, higher speed networks, such as Wi-Fi hotspots: "I got to tell you, carrying this thing around and experiencing those kinds of speeds on a wireless handset, your imagination begins to run in terms of what's ...
  • Google Losing Talent, Too
    A lot has been said about the employee exodus at Yahoo, but fellow Web giant Google is also losing employees, particularly to Internet startups. Whereas Yahoo's staff defection has more to do with the company's recent failures, Google's has more to do with the kind of employee it seeks: entrepreneurs. Such creative minds have been the secret to the search giant's success, but eventually employees want to go out on their own. As former Google employee Justin Rosenstein, a 24-year-old software engineer who left to join the social network site Facebook, says, another reason they leave is because ...
  • iPhone Is Handheld Revolution
    The iPhone may go down as one of the biggest duds in Apple Inc.'s history, given that it comes with a 20-minute video tutorial. Plus, it marginalizes the mainstream consumer, which means it's a niche product at best. The iPod was too, but it was well-reviewed and caught fire. Apple's global brand awareness is probably 10 times what it was before the iPod, which already gives the iPhone a giant leg up buzz terms. Couple that with a cellular industry badly in need of innovation, and you might have the beginning of something revolutionary. But "revolutionary" doesn't necessarily ...
  • Nintendo Opens The Wii
    Nintendo Corp., maker of the popular Wii, has opened up the video game console to independent game makers, both professional and amateu, though it isn't for novices. The company is releasing a set of tools to help budding developers produce games. Wii owners will be able to download games made by independent creators through the console's Web channel. The first batch should be available in early 2008. Games can first be created on a PC, but they must be fine-tuned using the Wii console. Use of the tools, called WiiWare, will require a basic knowledge of programming. Nintendo ...
  • Craigslister Charges To Wait For iPhone
    A Craigslister is charging money to wait in line to buy iPhones for other people, when it goes on sale tomorrow. They're charging a pretty penny for their patience, too -- sometimes as much as the iPhone itself. Many of these people point to their experience sitting for the release of Nintendo Wiis, Xbox 360s and other devices in their ad, citing references. As one line-stander says, "I'm a fourth-grade teacher and I have nothing to do this week, and I thought this would be good way to earn money." He was sure to include the words "fourth-grade ...
  • FTC Recommends Congress Ignore Net Neutrality
    The Federal Trade Commission dealt an unexpected blow to net neutrality Wednesday by issuing a report recommending that Congress leave the issue alone. Proponents of government intervention want Congress to ensure network operators like Comcast distribute bandwidth to Web publishers on an as-needed basis. So if ISPs like AT&T, which recently took steps to curtail illegal downloading on its network, want to place tighter controls on their networks, they can. "This report recommends that policy makers proceed with caution in the evolving, dynamic industry of broadband Internet access, which generally is moving toward more - not less - ...
  • YouTube Traffic Surges Since January
    YouTube may have been getting negative press for copyright suits and pulling videos, but new data from Hitwise shows that the online video giant is kicking butt. Since Google purchased it in November, YouTube has seen its U.S. traffic rise 70% between January and May, a Hitwise survey revealed Wednesday. Combined, traffic to the top 64 video sites beneath it rose a paltry 8%. "As of May 2007, YouTube's market share was 50% greater than those 64 sites combined," says Hitwise report author and research director LeeAnn Prescott. Indeed, YouTube's share of online video traffic mirrored ...
  • Google Earth and Beyond
    The popular 3D satellite mapping program Google Earth continues to improve, as new features and locations are uploaded. Much of this is thanks to a volunteer army of amateur cartographers. Indeed, Google Earth just might be the ultimate wiki: a virtual Earth containing information about every business in every city, posting real-time links to stories in cities worldwide as they happen. Maybe even allowing buyers and sellers to conduct business. Advertisers' heads must be spinning. What if you could walk down the street, take a picture of a given building and instantly know everything about it -- as ...
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