On today's show, Verizon tries to claim the Motorola Droid doesn't have the hardware to support hotspot tethering with Froyo. And here's the thing: that's a lie. In other news, the BlackBerry Torch hits, Rdio lands, and the FBI is cracking down on coloring books. Or something. I'm a tiny bit incoherent today.Subscribe: iTunes (MP3) | iTunes (320x180) | iTunes (640x360) | RSS (MP3) | RSS (320x180) | RSS (640x360)… Read more
With the undeniable popularity and success of the iPhone 4 (despite the antenna debacle), iPad, and ever-increasing Mac sales, Apple is gaining customers faster than ever. If you're thinking about making the switch, this could be your perfect setup.
Component one: iPhone 4 Now in its fourth iteration, Apple's iPhone has forever changed the mobile phone landscape by thrusting touch-screen technology to the tips of every tech geek's tongue and every consumer's wish list. Despite its early and somewhat overblown issues, iPhone 4 has had record-setting sales. With the exception of the complaints from a vocal minority regarding its antenna, … Read more
The first thing that should come to mind when you think of Cooliris is photos. The company is well known for its imaging products, which include a very snazzy cross-platform browser add-on, an iPhone app, and embedded Web site and mobile phone technology. All of these are able to turn a collection of photos into an interactive, 3D wall, be it in on your browser, Web site, or cell phone.
But with its latest creation for Apple's iPad, called Discover, Cooliris is moving beyond the presentation and organization of photos and into something a little more pedestrian: text.
Discover, which was submitted to Apple on Tuesday, takes content from Wikipedia--both text and still images (but mostly just text), and splits it up into sections. These can be flipped through with your finger, instead of scrolling down a large page in Safari. The app also keeps track of where you've been so you can retrace your reading path if you've gone several pages deep.
"When the iPad came out, we took an idea we had, and said 'this is probably a perfect platform to try it on,'" Cooliris' executive VP of products Michele Turner told CNET. "This new application takes structured data--in this case Wikipedia, as the starting point. We've then created a templatized starting page and structured data from Wikipedia to let users navigate the depths of Wikipedia in a beautiful and efficient way."
The end result is a Wikipedia with larger text that can be read like an e-book, and photos that can be thumbed through and scaled up to the iPad's full resolution. The app also takes advantage of orientation to reposition, or expand or consolidate the data it's showing. Along the way, Cooliris serves up advertisements, which is where it can make some of its money given the app's free price tag.
But why Wikipedia, and not a larger chunk of the Internet, as something like the recently popular Flipboard has done with RSS feeds? The short answer is that it's not there yet, but it will be soon. Turner and company do, in fact, envision Discover as a platform for various data feeds from around the Web. "We have over 100 content partners in the mainstream Cooliris product," Turner said. "The longer term opportunity is to work with the content partners to flow into this application, but that's kind of down the line."
Eventually the company plans to bring it to other platforms, including Android tablets. In making the iPad iteration of Discover, the company even built one for the iPhone, though Turner says it didn't feel quite right given the smaller form factor.
More pics of Discover can be seen after the break.… Read more
Google's mission is to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible, but not necessarily to create it outright. This makes Wikipedia a natural partner.
It's therefore no surprise to hear when the search colossus helps out the cooperatively written project.
Specifically, Google is helping Wikipedia with translation, so subject matter documented in one language needn't be created from scratch in another. Google described some of its translation work in a presentation at the Wikimania conference in Poland over the weekend.
"In the last 16 months, Google has been working with the Wikimedia Foundation, … Read more
Apple's Dictionary application is useful for grabbing information about items, either by looking them up in the dictionary or thesaurus, or by using online resources such as Wikipedia. Recently Wikipedia has undergone a few site and design changes, which have broken some of the way items are displayed in the Dictionary application.… Read more
Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales has not given up any of his editorial privileges, despite reports to the contrary, the Wikimedia Foundation said Monday.
In a blog post written Monday morning, Wikimedia Foundation communications director Jay Walsh formally addressed a growing controversy that began with reports last week suggesting Wales had lost many of his privileges in the wake of a Wikipedia community uprising.
The community discontent--which seems real to some--stems from moves Wales made to unilaterally pull down a series of what were said to be pornographic images from the online encyclopedia and some of its related sites.
Afterwards, … Read more
Change is afoot in the Wikipedia community, according to a report from Fox News, but the reality may be less drastic than has been reported.
The news agency is reporting that Wikimedia Foundation co-founder Jimmy Wales is relinquishing his top-level editorial control over content found on Wikipedia and other sites in the foundation's family. The move reportedly comes after a bubbling controversy surrounding potentially pornographic images that appeared on the community-managed encyclopedia and some related sites. Fox's sources said Wales will no longer be able "to delete files, remove administrators, assign projects, or edit any content." … Read more
While it has been fun watching Jeremy Clarkson of BBC's "Top Gear" fame test out fantastic rides for a thrill, I figured why not keep the fun going and bring on all the guys from "Top Gear"--Anthony Davidson and The Stig in this instance--as they try to figure out what the best car is for drifting.
In case you didn't know, drifting is "a driving technique and to a motor sport where the driver intentionally oversteers, causing loss of traction in the rear wheels through turns, while maintaining vehicle control and a … Read more
It might not seem like much, but a Monday announcement from Facebook to unveil its new "Community Pages" feature is one of the boldest steps that the social-networking site has taken toward, well, consuming your life.
"Community Pages" take the concept of a Facebook "fan page" and apply them to concepts, places, and ideas, rather than brands. An announcement at the top of Facebook's prototype community page for "cooking" explains that it aims to be "the best collection of shared knowledge on this topic," and sources quite a bit … Read more
Since its earliest days in 2001, Wikipedia's fundamental user experience has gone through a series of small, iterative changes, but the site has never had a significant overhaul. That's about to change.
Now the Wikimedia Foundation, the nonprofit that operates Wikipedia, announced that it would soon be pushing through some major changes to the look and feel of the popular user-created encyclopedia, the first time that it has proactively done such a thing.
"We are changing our default look to a new theme we call 'Vector' which makes essential functions easier to find," the Wikimedia Foundation … Read more