StudiVZ, a German site geared toward college students, is 10 times the size of Facebook's user base in Germany. It also looks just like Facebook, with a different color scheme, which is what ticked off the site's legal team. The court complaint, which called StudiVZ "a knockoff," says "a year and a half after the debut of Facebook's Web site, (it) was built by copying the look, … Read more
Social-networking giant Facebook has filed a copyright infringement suit against a German counterpart, according to the Financial Times.
StudiVZ is accused of "copying the look, feel, features and services" of Facebook, including its "wall" feature, according to the complaint filed Friday in California, the Financial Times reported.
The suit asserts that the sites are so similar that StudiVZ simply replaced Facebook's "blue color scheme with a red one."
There are many things that don't interest me at all as a blogger. I couldn't care less about the newest version of your product. I just don't. Unless you're Apple, in which case I care because I worship you. :-)
But for the PR people who want to find space on this blog, please send me case studies. I love hearing how customers are using software. The customer is always right, so even if I don't personally dream about your company/client every night, if a customer does, I want to know, and I'd … Read more
Studyrails is a relatively new tool for students who want to get their class schedule and study time synced up. It's mainly a calendaring tool, but thrown in is a mobile reminder service, and a forceful lock-out system that will keep you from slacking off on your computer when you're supposed to be studying.
The core calendar product is one of the more interesting efforts I've seen. After you've plugged in your class schedule, you have the option to schedule in study time. You guesstimate how much time you'll need for each discipline or project … Read more
Social networks like Facebook and MySpace have reputations as time-sucking procrastination tools, but a new study from the University of Minnesota says au contraire.
Social networks build beneficial technological, creative, and communication skills, the study says, leading the researchers to actually describe social networks with the adjective "educational." Who knew?
"What we found was that students using social networking sites are actually practicing the kinds of 21st century skills we want them to develop to be successful today," Christine Greenhow, a learning technologies researcher from the school's College of Education and Human Development, said in … Read more
It may be the Google era on the Internet, but when it comes to finding company information that employees need to do their jobs, it's barely even the CompuServe era.
That, more or less, is what research firm AIIM found in a study that surveyed more than 500 businesses in May about the "findability" of information.
In the study, 49 percent agreed that it's hard to find information they need, and 69 percent said less than half of their employer's information is searchable online.
Enterprise search technology is widely available, so the issue lies more … Read more
Attention, employers: buying larger computer monitors for your workers might help them get more work done.
That's according to a study done by researchers at the University of Utah. They tested how long it took people to edit documents and copy spreadsheet information over an 8-hour period, meant to represent a typical work day. Three different setups were used: a computer with an 18-inch monitor, one with a 24-inch monitor, and one with two 20-inch monitors. (Note: The study was commissioned by NEC, which produces monitors, but the lead researcher said it didn't matter what type of monitor … Read more
While some in private-sector industry drag their feet on open source, it's instructive that arguably the most mission-critical systems in the world are being migrated to open source, namely, the US military's systems.
It's not just a question of cost that drives the US military to buy open source. Indeed, the biggest benefits come down to innovation and flexibility:...[T]he increasing scope and complexity of military software requirements encourages the use of open source. "If the project is of a sufficient scale, you cannot get there without an open source approach," said Dewey Houck, a senior engineer at Boeing, the lead systems integrator for the Army's FCS.
That is a massively important statement. We may be rapidly approaching the point when it will make little sense to buy proprietary software at all, given the tremendous benefits of open source.
Other benefits? The military cites several:… Read more
From 2007 to 2012, the market should more than quadruple for technology called watermarks or fingerprints that can endow photos, video, and audio with unobtrusive digital identifiers, according to a new study.
Digital watermarks modify a digital file slightly so that specific information can be embedded, but the techniques are subtle so people don't notice the change when viewing or listening to the media file. The technology is a less-obtrusive cousin to digital rights management (DRM), which at least in theory encrypts files so they can't be used except by those with authorization.
The market for watermarking technology … Read more
I just heard from Dan Agronow, chief technology officer for The Weather Channel Interactive, who will be speaking at the Open Source Business Conference next year (March 25-26). He's one of a range of IT executives who will be speaking at the event, sharing best practices and digging into the pros (and cons) of open-source adoption.
His session sounds fascinating:
CIO Best Practices: How Weather.com Uses Open Source Software to Deliver a Highly Scalable and Cost Effective Website… Read more