Welcome to another week of The 404 Podcast! We're running through several stories on today's episode, including OnStar reading you Facebook updates in the car, Cablevision and Time Warner teaming up to offer "free" public Wi-Fi in NYC parks, carrier pigeons beating the Internet, Americans increasingly distracted by the Internet, a useless product appropriately called the "Textee," and a nerdy new Tumblr that looks at how the Internet and hacking culture are portrayed in film!
Our first story in the rundown is a shameless plug for AccessMainComputerFile, a new blog that pokes fun at images of hacker culture and embellished UI in popular movies like "Independence Day," "Richie Rich," "Terminator 2," and more. Submissions are also welcome, so send over your YouTube links!
Facebook is already a ubiquitous part of daily Interlife, but now OnStar is testing a service that connects your car to the social network as well. The system uses voice recognition and even interprets Web-slang like LOL as "laughing out loud," and drivers can also record audio as status updates without taking their hands off the wheel.
Additionally, if you have an Android-powered phone with Bluetooth, OnStar can receive your text messages and translate them to audio and from there, you can use voice commands to send a reply (like "yes" or "can't talk--driving"). OnStar hopes to have an similar app available for the iPhone soon, but in the meantime iPhone users can download OnStar's MyLink App that shows you service information, tire pressure, and even offers the capability to lock your doors remotely from anywhere in the world.
New York's two main cable providers are teaming up to offer free wireless Internet in select New York City public parks. Before you head out, though, we should mention that Time Warner and Cablevision promise only three free 10-minute sessions per month; after that, you'll be charged $0.99 a day to get on the network. It sounds like a classic bait-and-switch scenario, and we can't see people jumping to pay for public Internet when truly free wireless access is already available in thousands of hot spots around the city.
Everyone complains about sluggish Internet, but a CTO of a U.K. ISP put his own pathetic broadband speeds to the test...against a carrier pigeon. The only thing more bizarre than the test setup is the result: the pigeons were able to deliver the 100MB of video by MicroSD Card faster than it took to upload the clip to YouTube. The stunt is a half-joke, but it makes a good point about the necessity for Net neutrality.
No voice-mails today, so it's up to you to call us up at 1-866-404-CNET and help out the show! You can also hit us up on Twitter or just e-mail us at the404(at)cnet(dot)com!
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