Archive for the ‘gadget’ Category

YouTube vs. Viacom: then come Stephen Colbert and Jon Stewart

August 18, 2007


YouTube vs. Viacom: into the ring come Colbert and Stewart

 

By Joshua S. Hill

Thursday, August 16, 2007

It was only a matter of time before a big entertainment conglomerate attempted to bring their full weight down on the head of internet video giant YouTube, and it was Viacom – the company behind MTV,Paramount Pictures, Nickelodeon and Comedy Central – that has made the first move. With a twist though, as they have sided with The Football Association Premier League Ltd and indie music label Bourne Co.

Filed with the New York federal court, the suit alleges that YouTube is“…pursuing a deliberate strategy of engaging in, permitting, encouraging, and facilitating massive copyright infringement on the YouTube website”.

The aim of the suit is to draw Google in to a stranglehold where its ability to publish any content is severely restricted. Any further restrictions set upon the YouTube design will mean slower upload times, more checks along the way and less freedom for those who are actually providing decent content. In addition the suit hopes to acquire unspecified damages for past violations.

Thankfully though, Google has deep, deep pockets; really deep! And they’ve announced that they want to depose approximately 30 people, including well known and beloved comedians Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert. The two funny men, whose shows are broadcast over the Viacom network’s Comedy Central, are surprising additions to a list that includes Viacom Chairman Sumner Redstone and CEO Philippe Dauman.

No doubt Viacom will be arguing shortly that the deposition of these two funny men is entirely irrelevant to the case, however pundits – including this humble reporter – disagree. In fact these two may very well be the lynch pin in a case that could very well change the face of the internet as we currently know it.

It is well known that both comedians are big fans of YouTube, with Stewart often showcasing funny clips found on the social networking video site on his own show, whereas Stephen Colbert has openly asked people to spread his work across the internet, using YouTube and other video sites. Why have they focused so much attention on this website? The answer is simple, because they understand where media is heading, and what needs to happen so that television stars like themselves can stay in business.

The issue is of course the fact that Viacom – along with many of the major industry heavies across the television, movie and music spectrum – are literally entirely clueless when it comes to the future. They are so wrapped up in the current way of doing things that they are unable to see what is happening outside of their bubble. They receive reports that their ratings are dropping, and that this “internet” thing is picking up speed – “as if it will last”.

Stephen Colbert and Jon Stewart may never make it to an official setting, but they have already made themselves an intrinsic part of the debate that will no doubt be waged for several years to come. We can only sit back and hope that the noise we make from out here in the bleachers is heard all the way up in their tall towers.

A Geek’s-Geek from Melbourne, Australia, Josh is an aspiring author with dreams of publishing his epic fantasy, currently in the works, sometime in the next 5 years. A techie, nerd, sci-fi nut and bookworm, Josh can be found at JoshSHill.com for his personal blog, or atMyWritingVoice.com for his writing blog.

WESITE:  http://www.canadafreepress.com/2007/hill081607.htm

Engadget: New Mac Mini is tested

August 16, 2007

Apple’s new Mac mini may not have gotten quite the overhaul that the iMac got last week, but PC World thinks there’s still quite a bit to get excited about, largely due to the system’s new Core 2 Duo processor. In its tests, PC World found that to give the mini a significant boost across the board including, for example, a 24-percent jump in Photoshop performance over the old 1.83GHz Mac mini (the new 1.83GHz Core 2 Duo mini showed a 19-percent increase). In other tests, the new top-end Mac mini managed to pump out 13-percent more frames per second in Unreal Tournament 2004 than the old top-end model, and it proved to be about even with the new 2GHz Core 2 Duo iMac in tests like Compressor and Cinema 4D, although the mini’s slower 5,400 rpm hard drive caused it to drag in tasks like importing files into iPhoto. If you’re itching for even more benchmarks, you can get your fix at the link below.

Tags: apple, benchmark, mac, mac mini,

Engadget: Fertility measuring cell phone

August 16, 2007

Report from Engadget

Believe it or not, we’ve seen something like this before — out of Japan, naturally — so we’re a bit surprised to see a patent app roll in from Samsung for a phone capable of tracking a woman’s fertile periods. The idea is to keep the user updated on her “baby” and “no baby” times of the month when she places a call by measuring distance to the eardrum (using either ultrasonic or laser sensors) combined with infrared to get a temperature reading. This corresponds to a woman’s basal body temperature cycle, which in turn maps to her menstrual cycle. In Japan, the concept was intended to boost birth rates by keeping couples in the know on exactly when they might have success — but elsewhere we imagine the intent might be just the opposite. We’ll leave it to our readers’ active imaginations to decide just when and how the user should be kept abreast of said information.

MORE @ http://www.engadget.com/2007/08/16/samsung-files-patent-app-for-fertility-measuring-phone/