KEF, one of Britain's leading speaker manufacturers, had a press event earlier this week in New York City to show off their new Muon speakers. I was curious to see the speaker in the flesh, and now that I have I can say the pictures don't do it justice. They are the most beautiful speakers I've ever seen.
Designed by Ross Lovegrove (a top industrial designer), they are indeed works of 21 century art, fabricated from malleable sheets of heated aluminum. The process was required to produce the Muon's complex curves, dictated by the design's … Read more
To avoid having to turn over user information to the motion picture industry, the BitTorrent indexing service TorrentSpy cut off access to its site in the United States. Apparently, that wasn't enough to satisfy Hollywood.
According to documents filed with the court last week and reviewed by CNET News.com on Wednesday, the studios still want information on the site's visitors. Lawyers representing the studios--armed with a court order--say TorrentSpy has refused to hand over the data. Because of that, the movie sector wants the judge to throw the book at the company.
"(TorrentSpy) took steps to … Read more
U.K. newspaper the Telegraph has been giving lots of coverage to Radiohead's recent decision to offer its next album on a bid-for-download basis, with lots of breathless headlines. Some of the paper's analysis seems overly simplistic to me--the labels were in trouble before Radiohead's move, and younger kids buy plenty of CDs and downloads, just not from flavor-of-the-minute pop artists like they did five years ago. But the coverage emphasizes how much Radiohead's move is shaking up the music industry.
Radiohead and its record label, EMI, parted ways in 2005 after the band fulfilled the terms of its contract. The assumption among fans and industry types was that the band was shopping for a new label, and a new album was supposedly slated for 2008.
Today, Radiohead posted a terse entry on its official Web site announcing that its next album, In Rainbows, would be available for sale on Oct. 10. Sort of.
That is, fans will be able to download digital versions of the 10 album tracks on that date. Not from iTunes or Amazon or any other music … Read more
San Francisco will host thousands of designers from around the world when CONNECTING'07, the Icsid/IDSA World Design Congress, comes to town October 17-20. As the largest and most influential gathering of industrial designers to date, CONNECTING'07 will fill three major Nob Hill sites with prominent speakers, exhibits, and events. Related activities will also spill into the surrounding city, with many of San Francisco's design studios, companies, museums, design schools and stores holding receptions, open houses and tours. Representatives from nearly 500 internationally renowned corporations, design firms, government entities, and higher education institutions, spanning more than 35 … Read more
A new report by Research and Markets says Russians are snapping up cars at a proportionately faster rate than much of the rest of the world.
The report predicts that sales of new passenger cars will increase more than 20 percent a year in the coming years. The sale of spare parts is expected to grow nearly 15 percent annually.
According to a separate 2006 report by political commentator Alexander Yurov, more than 1.5 million cars are sold in Russia every year. Yurov estimates the figure will be closer to 2 million cars by 2008.
The Research and Markets … Read more
Market research firm eMarketer recently published a study about U.S. consumer spending on music since 1980. Most commenters have seized on the fact that the study shows a higher percentage of people are buying music today than ever, but that those users are spending much less, probably due to the rise of single-song downloads. (eMarketer calls these "MP3 downloads"--in fact, the #1 source of legal downloads, iTunes, offers them in the AAC format, and many other sites offer downloads in the Windows Media Audio format.)
But I also noticed that music spending per capita rose dramatically … Read more
Microsoft made a splash earlier this year with a tabletop PC called Milan. Designers and developers there might have been spared building their 85 early prototypes, however, if they'd just gone shopping at defense contractor Northrop Grumman instead of Ikea.
As it turns out, Northrop Grumman--best known for missile systems and other military gear--for several years has been hawking the similar TouchTable as part of what it calls an "integrated collaboration environment." It'll be showing off the technologies next week at a defense conference in London, and last month delivered a TouchTable to the Federal Aviation … Read more
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