If you're into cars you've probably have read a million stories about guys who invest tons of money and time restoring cars. You know the type, a baby boomer in Texas buys a '65 Mustang for $3K, and then over the next five years drops $30K to make it look brand new. But it's still a 42 year old car and no matter how pretty it looks, it can't compare, performance-wise, to any decent modern car, or for that matter, a brand new Mustang. The new one could blow the doors off the original, but it … Read more
As I sat here today, trying to decide what the topic should be for this week's Future Implications piece, I thought of the ever-popular topics of computing, smart phones and even HDTVs. But alas, I came across this list from Ethisphere that lists the World's Most Ethical Companies for 2007.
Upon opening the link and examining the list, I was aghast at what I found: most major tech companies were nowhere to be found. Is this an endemic issue in the technology business? And more importantly, what can be done to fix it?… Read more
To paraphrase the T-shirt: This was supposed to be the future. Where is my robot chef for days when I'm too tired to cook?
Turns out, the future is just around the corner. Liu Changfa, a retired professor in Beijing, has grabbed headlines with the prototype of his "food robot." The 5-foot-tall iron chef comprises a base that houses a computer, a gut that contains an induction cooker and a pot, and a chest that frames a screen. The chef also has a robotic arm to help with stirring as well as a C-3PO-esque mien that's … Read more
As Microsoft announced its new Extender solution today, many have been asking if it will be the new be-all, end-all for the home viewing experience. Some have called this an amazing development that deserves attention, while others are saying it's not all that great. I tend to agree with the second group.
For those of you who are unaware of this new product from Microsoft, Extender will be able to take any media (video, TV, music, print) from a PC to a television or from a television to another television in another room. In other words, you can have the same show playing in your bedroom and living room without missing a beat. Ideally, this would work with the help of a Media Center PC and a device being created by Linksys, D-Link and others.
This may sound great on paper, and the ability to move media around in my house like this would be nice, but is it really necessary? More often than not, I have the equipment I need to do this already. Sure, it may not be as easy as Microsoft's product, but if the current infrastructure is there, why get rid of it for something new? Simply put, this technology is a few years too late.… Read more
Office 2.0 is not just about putting Word and Excel online. What are the key things in Office 2.0 moving forward? The first panel at the Office 2.0 conference, hosted by GigaOm's Om Malik, tackles this. Some directions we can look forward to in future business applications:
Social networking. This can be a "game changer" for the workforce, if applied correctly to business needs. So says Microsoft's Richard McAniff. Interesting take, considering Microsoft's lack of juice in this arena. Is McAniff presaging a new product or acquisition?
Better tools to tackle the &… Read more
There's nothing quite like rumors. Whether it's the pudgy Nano or the Google Phone, there is always something worth speculating about. But before we start telling the world about the rumored Google Phone (or Gphone as it has come to be known), it's time we consider the environmental factors that will cause this device to be a failure -- if it's real, that is.
If Google decides to break out of its shell and release a new cell phone that some are calling the "iPhone Killer," it will be a huge mistake.
As I've mentioned before, the only way for Google to make any headway in the cell phone business is through the help of the 700MHz spectrum. With this tactic in mind, Google could create its own phone that works like Skype on the spectrum and in the process, kill off the entire cell phone industry. But for Google to throw a device into the cell phone business on domestic and international carriers would not only be a mistake, it could be an indication that Google is getting in over its head.… Read more
All of this talk about reworking the Internet and IPv6 has me thinking: has the Internet become as important as water? Some would surely say that I'm off my rocker on this one and say that, of course water is more important than the Internet. And while I agree that without water we can't survive, and without the Internet we can, this is not meant to be a discussion on biology. The truth of the matter is that we, as a world, have become so reliant on the Internet that it's quickly becoming just as important as … Read more
As a person who owns a custom-built desktop, Mac Mini and a few laptops, I once found it hard to believe that anyone would actually believe that the death of the desktop computer would be coming around the corner. I've heard the argument set forth in other arenas and scoffed at the possibility of such a popular product being thrown away in favor or a more versatile machine. I was wrong.
The desktop is a dying breed -- it's as simple as that. I had this epiphany recently when I had to run down to my local CompUSA … Read more
Take one part G.I. Joe and one part Fisher-Price Little People, mix in a few dashes of the U.S. Army's Future Combat Systems paraphernalia, and you might just come up with the Mighty World line of preschool-friendly military action figures.
These very little soldiers, distributed by International Playthings, are well-provisioned with some of the very latest in 21st-century battlefield gadgets. Consider Major Mac and his stealthy reconnaissance drone (an ultramodern, top-secret stealthy reconnaissance drone, that is). "Operated from his laptop, it swoops over enemy territory and relays back vital field information," says the Mighty World … Read more
Google and Microsoft are at it again. But this time Google is attacking Microsoft for threatening Linux users for patent violations.
In an announcement made earlier this week, Google signed on with the Open Invention Network (OIN), which is supported by Red Hat and a few other Linux heavyweights. The Open Invention Network is an organization designed by and for Linux developers, distributors, sellers, resellers, and end-users to protect them from the onslaught of costly lawsuits or other attempts made on them by bigger and better-funded enterprises. But until Google joined the fray on the side of the OIN, some … Read more