It was first shown at January's Consumer Electronics Show--and then leaked on Buy.com just days ago--but the Sansa TakeTV is now official. It's not the first device designed to put PC-based digital videos on the TV, but what sets SanDisk's TakeTV apart is its simplicity: just drag and drop videos to the flash drive from your PC, and then plug it into the included video dock to watch them on your TV. The straightforward operation is a notable counterpoint to most other PC-to-TV digital video alternatives, which involve either cumbersome direct hook-ups (video and audio runs … Read more
Thanks to its position as a memory chip manufacturer, SanDisk is a master at cost competing in the portable audio space, and although companies such as Creative Labs are now tagging at about the same level, SanDisk's initial aggressiveness earned it the No. 2 spot in sales (behind Apple, natch)--and a reputation for producing cheap MP3 players. The company's latest device, an ultracompact model dubbed the Sansa Clip, is no exception: The 1GB model comes in at a mere $40, while the 2GB is on offer for a no less reasonable $70. But don't let the … Read more
The Wikimedia Foundation, the nonprofit organization that brought forth wiki-based sites like Wikibooks, Wiktionary, Wikispecies, Wikiquote, Wikisource, the Wikimedia Commons, and of course the iconic Wikipedia, is packing up and moving.
The organization announced on Tuesday that at the end of January it will relocate from its longtime home of St. Petersburg, Fla., to the tech hub of San Francisco after choosing from six candidate cities in a search to find a headquarters close to major media, research universities and a thriving technology scene. "(San Francisco's) proximity to Asia in particular is expected to enable the Foundation to … Read more
Starting Wednesday, most of the movers and shakers in the virtual-worlds business will be descending on San Jose for the Virtual Worlds conference.
I'm very interested to see how this show turns out. I covered and spoke at the spring edition of this show, which was held in New York, and I really wasn't overly impressed. At the time, I felt that the hundreds of people who attended weren't entirely sure why they were there, though they knew they should be.
On the other hand, as a veteran of such shows, maybe my standards were too high. … Read more
According to a report yesterday in The Wall Street Journal, Yahoo's restructuring plan will likely involve significant cutbacks at Yahoo Music, including the shutdown of one or more of its subscription-based services.
In fact, it looks like Yahoo has already removed all links to its Yahoo Music Unlimited To Go service. The service, priced at $11.99 per month, allows users to transfer files to a compatible portable device. The service now can be found only by conducting a search, and I'm not sure if Yahoo is accepting new customers for it. That leaves Yahoo Music Unlimited, which … Read more
I woke on September 11, 2001 to the news of the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon and the loss of UA Flight 93 in Pennsylvania.
I went in to work that morning, but nobody was getting any work done, and I couldn't concentrate, so I went home again.
While watching the news coverage, I wrote and emailed a letter to the San Jose Mercury News and several nationally-recognized newspapers. I don't actually know if my letter was printed anywhere else, but the Mercury News contacted me later that day and… Read more
You may recognize the name Sansa View, but that's about all SanDisk's new video MP3 player has in common with the original View announced at CES. SanDisk essentially went back to the drawing board, which is why it's taken so long for the official View to surface. Rather than a screen-dominated PVP, you get an e200 with a sleeker design, a beefed-up (2.4-inch) screen, and a larger--but still thin--body (4.3 inches by 1.9 inches by 0.4 inch). It's a smart move, since more users are inclined toward compact players than dedicated PVPs. … Read more
EarthLink said late Wednesday that it is bailing out of a contract to build San Francisco's free Wi-Fi service.
EarthLink backed out of the deal a day after the company announced it was laying off 900 employees--nearly half of its staff. EarthLink, which is trying to get its finances in order, announced earlier this summer that it would not invest in any new citywide Wi-Fi deployments until it came up with a better business model.
But it was assumed the company would fulfill obligations with cities where it had already signed contracts. Now it looks like EarthLink is … Read more
Wednesday morning I visited the new Menlo Park, Calif., headquarters of Zonbu, makers of the low-cost, service-supported Linux computer I mentioned last month (here). I met with Zonbu CEO Grégoire Gentil, who gave me an overview of the company's business plan and a demo of the system. He also offered… Read more