When it comes to the mobile world, it's all about apps.
More than ever, people are using apps to augment the capabilities of their smartphones. They can remind you of your next meeting, play the latest Lady Gaga song, and make catapulting virtual birds into evil pigs a family pastime.
Likewise, they're increasingly important to the technology world. The apps market is expected to generate $9 billion in revenue this year and nearly double that next year, according to Gartner. The lack of apps, meanwhile, has crippled some smartphone platforms. Just ask Research In Motion and its BlackBerry … Read more
Village Instruments has said on a Facebook post today that it plans to design and sell a Thunderbolt-based external graphics card enclosure for use with Thunderbolt-equipped Macs. Anandtech first reported the announcement, which came as a result of a positive response to a poll Village Instruments originally posted on Facebook last week.
A Thunderbolt-based graphics card enclosure, which Village Instruments is calling the ViDock Thunderbolt, would ostensibly give Mac users the ability to upgrade the graphics capability of any Mac laptop or desktop with a Thunderbolt port. Presumably it might also work with Apple's new Thunderbolt Cinema Display.
Using … Read more
It's a massive business, worth more than $20 billion annually in software and hardware sales alone. Its influence reaches every corner of our society and is as mainstream as it comes. I'm not talking about the television industry, believe it or not. I'm talking about video games.
Interactive games, like so many of the products and trends in the marketplace, come straight out of the "everything old is new again" file. Flashback to 1960, when CBS aired the show "Video Village," produced by Heatter-Quigley, the creators of "Hollywood Squares." The show … Read more
Links from Monday's episode of Loaded:
Today is Cyber Monday, which is mostly a marketing scam in IMHO. Regardless, you will find it worthwhile to check out CNET's gift suggestions
Angry Birds' Christmas Edition is coming soon
Meanwhile, Angry Birds for Windows Phone 7 is not coming soon
Richard Branson is said to be launching an iPad magazine to compete with Rupert Murdoch's rumored iPad magazine. Branson's version will simply be called Project
A village in India has banned unmarried women from using cell phones
In the 1960s, I heard new music on the radio.
The best DJs turned me on to new stuff all the time. Next best source was friends--I'd go over to their house to check out their new LPs. Record reviews in Rolling Stone and The Village Voice flagged intriguing up-and-comers. I used to find new music in record stores, but that rarely happens anymore.
Nowadays it's Sirius satellite radio and Pitchfork. And just snooping around the Internet, including artists' Web sites, I luck onto new music. My latest find: a quirky little band by the name of Clem Snide. … Read more
The economy is in trouble and we're all cutting back on spending, unsure of what the future might hold. We're also starting to realize that maybe doing things ourselves instead of hiring outside help is a great idea.
But if you're someone like me, building a deck in the back yard or, heck, painting vaulted ceilings, just isn't something you're proficient at. But luckily for us, there are a slew of sites across the Web that provide articles and videos that can help us complete any project.
5min.com I like 5min because I can learn about almost anything in, well, 5 minutes or less.
5min features videos from users who are experts on a particular subject. Sometimes, their expertise is buying an electric shaver. Other times, it's installing weatherstripping. Either way, you can find anything from the simple to the complex on 5min.
Although the videos are great, my favorite feature on 5min is the company's video player. Unlike some players that only let you play, stop, rewind, and fast-forward a clip, 5min's video player lets you zoom in, proceed frame-by-frame, and run the video in slow motion so you don't miss any steps. That feature comes in especially handy when you watch a video on a complex topic and the expert is moving too fast in their instruction.
eHoweHow is a fantastic how-to site that includes both videos and articles. And although there aren't nearly as many videos on the site as other services like 5min, eHow still provides a fine alternative for learning how to get things done.
eHow enlists the help of professionals to create the more than 300,000 articles on the site. From learning how to tie a tie, to how to caulk, the site has it all. That said, if you're looking for video, you're not going to find much on eHow--it's designed to provide step-by-step text instructions. Sometimes, especially when I need to figure out how to build something like a deck, that's ideal. But for simple topics like learning how to throw a baseball, a video works much better. In those cases, I tend to use sites like 5min or Expert Village instead.
You will be forced to sit through commercials on the company's videos, but that's not a big deal--they're only 15 seconds long and run before the clip. I should also note that the site's video player doesn't offer all the extras like those that you'll find with 5min, so you'll probably find yourself moving the slider back quite often to figure out how to do something.
But video isn't what eHow is all about. The site is ideal when you want to bring instructions with you wherever you need to complete a task. Unlike 5min or Expert Village, I don't need to sit in front of my computer to see how to sand wood flooring when I use eHow; I can print out the instructions and read them. And on complex projects, having that option is ideal.
Expert Village is a little different from a service like 5min, which allows users to upload videos to display their expertise. Expert Village employs experts who work in fields ranging from music to home improvement who research particular topics and create short videos--usually no longer than five minutes--detailing how to perform a particular task.
The value of Expert Village's use of experts is seen almost immediately. Sure, you can find a really informative video on 5min and it might provide the same quality as something on Expert Village, but generally, that's the exception, not the norm.
According to Expert Village's internal figures, the site features over 131,000 videos that have been viewed more than 292 million times. And given the wide range of topics those videos cover, Expert Village is an ideal source for help.
One especially nice offering that shouldn't be overlooked is Expert Village's series. Unlike 5min or even eHow, some Expert Village experts stay on one topic and create a series of videos to walk you through a process.
What recession? Right now, there are several hundred people in line at the Seattle Apple Store in University Village, waiting to buy and activate a 3G iPhone, which starts at $199 and requires a two-year commitment to a voice-and-data plan that costs at least $70 per month. The line was just long as last year's, despite the tougher economic climate and the fact that we've had more than a year to get used to the iPhone--seeing one in public isn't much of a surprise anymore.
But apparently the promise of a faster data connection, GPS transceiver, third-party … Read more