Monthly Archives: February 2012

Daring Fireball: Dell Executive: ‘We’re No Longer a PC Company’

This is the best laugh I’ve had all day. Turnabout is fair play.

Kennedy Space Center at 50: A spaceport in transition – The Washington Post

Brian Vastag for the Washington Post:

Among the facilities available: A space shuttle launchpad, slightly used; a giant crawler for moving rockets, still servicable; two enormous mobile launch platforms; two space shuttle maintenance hangars; a 15,000-foot concrete runway, one of the world’s longest; and the blocky, 52-story Vehicle Assembly Building, with four soaring rocket assembly bays — and no waiting.

Such a shame, indeed.

(via 512 Pixels)

Rogers’ new One Number: Is this the future of telco voice? — Mobile Technology News

Kevin Fitchard for Om Malik:

It was only a matter of time before a major North American operator abandoned its territorial notions about mobile voice and adopted a true ‘softphone’ service. That operator appears to be Rogers Communications. It’s severing the seemingly unbreakable bond between the mobile phone number and the mobile phone, making it an outlier in an industry that has always jealously guarded its voice revenues.

The future of voice.

Why connecting to a Wi-Fi hotspot is about to get easier — Mobile Technology News

Kevin C. Tofel for GigaOm:

With devices using the Passpoint standard, users will be able to connect to Wi-Fi hotspots without having to enter logon credentials with each connection instance and will be able to seamlessly roam from one Passpoint-enabled Wi-Fi network to another.

Translation: Your cell phone can now roam between Wi-Fi hotspots just like it roams between cell towers. Think about that.



Mountain Lion

Apple has announced the next version of Mac OS X called Mountain Lion which brings more of iOS to OS X. The article I enjoyed most was from John Gruber of Daring Fireball who was invited to a private one-on-one announcement last week.

And then the reveal: Mac OS X — sorry, OS X — is going on an iOS-esque one-major-update-per-year development schedule. This year’s update is scheduled for release in the summer, and is ready now for a developer preview release. Its name is Mountain Lion.

My favorite feature: Deep iCloud integration including an updated Finder and Open/Save dialogs that include all your documents stored in the cloud.

My second favorite feature: The new app called Messages. Send and receive iMessages just like you do on your iOS device. This app is going to be available soon (they said today but there appears to be a problem) for Lion users on the Mac App Store.

I love that I ran across absolutely no rumors on this subject prior to the announcement. How refreshing!

Path Not Taking the High Road (Updated)

Over the course of the last couple of weeks, after the funeral of our grandfather, my siblings and I decided to keep in better contact. We are spread out geographically and have a hard time staying in touch. We want a way to conveniently share stories, pictures and videos with each other without sharing with friends or acquaintenaces.  We want to be more social.

We’ve looked at Glassboard, Path and Google+. Facebook was not even considered due to privacy concerns. Google+ was easy to dismiss due to the incredible awfulness that is their mobile client.

Now the internet is buzzing with the discovery that Path uploads your entire address book to their servers. Their response is that the only use is to connect you with your friends and family. Here is a quote from the linked article by Arun Thampi:

Upon inspecting closer, I noticed that my entire address book (including full names, emails and phone numbers) was being sent as a plist to Path. Now I don’t remember having given permission to Path to access my address book and send its contents to its servers, so I created a completely new “Path” and repeated the experiment and I got the same result – my address book was in Path’s hands.

Brett Simons of Glassboard (and the creator of NetNewsWire) explains this through the eyes of someone who has made a mistake like this in the past.

To the creators of Path: Without my permission, you took information from me about people I care very much about. I am walking away and will not be using Path.

UPDATE: Path has publicly apologized and says they have removed all personal data from their servers. Nicely done. I’m still favoring Glassboard. (via Om Malik)

Bizarro Digital Experience at CES Next Year

Paul Carr let’s us know about his bizarro Digitial Experience event at the next CES. He appears serious and I hope he follows through since I love a good underdog story. Did Pepcom really deny Leo Laporte access to the event?

Skiing with HD/HUD Goggles

Scott Tharler for Discovery News:

So downhillers can set up high-def video shots before a run and then watch the action afterwards on the chairlift, all without having to remove their gloves or goggles.

As a skiier myself, I would love to be able to record some of my runs and to see who is calling without removing my phone from my pocket.

Programming Error Doomed Phobos-Grunt

Irene Klotz for Discovery News:

In a report to be presented to Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin on Tuesday, investigators concluded that the primary cause of the failure was “a programming error which led to a simultaneous reboot of two working channels of an onboard computer,” the Russian state-owned news agency RIA Novosti reported.

In the U.S., we have had our fair share of issues with Mars and programming. Remember the 1999 loss of the Mars orbiter due to some systems using English measurements while others measured in the more standard metric ssytem?

I wish the Russian team had succeeded in their mission.