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Tech News HeadlineToo Bad It’s Only Data! - The announcement that SBC would install hotspots in all locations of The UPS Store signifies a trend that will have a big impact on enterprises. If you thought Wi-Fi was only a fad… More and more hotspots are showing up each day. What makes this impertant is the immensly faster throughput of Wi-Fi as opposed to a laptop wired to a cell phone. It may not be the best, but, as they say, it’s better than the rest. Now, if we could only send packages via Wi-Fi, instead of data packets…… [04. 7.2004 @ 11:14 AM PT]

Tech News HeadlineWhistle a tune to them Longhorns? - CNET | DOWNLOAD DISPATCH (PC Edition) April 6, 2004 Vol. 9, No. 13 Microsoft wants you to rent music, not buy it. Its new digital rights technology, Janus, lets music labels offer songs that time out if you don’t pay a subscription fee. This technology may make its first public appearance in July. From initial reports, it appears to be aimed primarily at portable music players. Read about Janus: The author of this article has serious doubts about the consumer adopting the idea and I have to agree. I, for one, am just a little tired of paying through the nose for entertainment. From the cost of cable or satellite TV to pay-per-view, they keep finding new ways to keep the cash flowing. I’m not even a big fan of services like RealNetwroks’ Rhapsody, which requires a monthly subscription in order to listen to music. Yes, you pay your $10 and get to listen to any and all music that they have available, but you don’t get to keep any of it. And you can’t even listen to it anywhere except at your computer (well, you can to a certain extent, if you have a home network, but that application isn’t widespread). Basically, if you don’t have that network connection to a system in every room of the house AND in your car, the music is just in one spot. And that is where I part company with the various forms of music ‘rental’. Compared to buying a CD, downloading music pruchased from a service, or plain old listening to the radio, music rental doesn’t cut it. The big difference, here, is one of ownership. If I buy a CD, I own that copy. I can copy it to cassette or rip it to my computer, or any number of other things, BUT I don’t have to keep paying for it. Same goes for downloaded tracks, except I don’t get stuck paying for anything that isn’t a favorite track. I’ve had people tell me how great subscription services are and it just ‘doesn’t compute’ in my head. Why pay more than once for something, when you can pay once and be done with it?… [04. 7.2004 @ 11:14 AM PT]

Tech News HeadlineA Hard Row to Drive - Well, Chris the Gnome asked for this. Now he’s got it. In today’s edition of Windows Fanatics, he posted a kvetch that made me sit back and wonder if he’s spent a little too much time away from the keyboard. He is, after all, supposed to be Our Glorious Bleeder.. umm… Leader (darn! no spell checker here!). Our Head Gnomie has got himself some kind of problem with an external hard drive , made by one Western Digital. He left out a few possibly pertinent details, like the interface (IDE or USB), the age of the motherboard, and what specific motherboard he has, but claims that Windows XP doesn’t like it. Here’s my comments on that score. Maybe if we all jump up and down and scream at once, we can get him to open up some. I know it must be embarrassing, him being the Chief Gnome and all, but even I don’t know everything! (Almost everything, though…). Anyway, Chris wrote back denying all knowledge of what I was talking about, but telling me that this question was perfect for the Tech News Channel. Here it is: Chris, “Every time I reboot in Windows XP Professional (SP1), the hardware seems to forget that it has removable media slots” I’m curious about external hd’s. I would assume that you just hook them up to the average IDE cable that is actually hooked to the internal controller on the mobo, no? If that’s true, then I have to guess that the basic product design is bad and most people who run XP should have the same problem. The one thing that is a little harder to deal with is some unknown BIOS incompatibility. But this item is nothing but a vanilla internal drive in an external case with (at most) a power supply(?). So I fail to see where the possibility comes in of having this problem. It goes round and round. I missed the original post (if any) on the addition of the hard drive, though. We know that it’s a WD drive, but what size is it, etc.? And that’s about it. We’ll await further communication with OGL and see what we can figure out…. [04. 7.2004 @ 11:14 AM PT]

Tech News HeadlineFlash mob supercomputer misses its target - “An ambitious attempt to build a makeshift supercomputer from hundreds of random laptops has missed its target of breaking into the list of the world’s top 500 fastest machines. More than 700 volunteers gathered at the University of San Francisco on Saturday to build the ‘flash mob supercomputer’ using their own laptops. But many of the volunteered computers were simply too unreliable for the whole system to run ‘in parallel’ for long enough to reach top speed.”… [04. 7.2004 @ 11:14 AM PT]

Tech News HeadlineNet music piracy ‘does not harm record sales’ - “…Felix Oberholzer-Gee at Harvard Business School in Massachusetts and Koleman Strumpf at the University of North Carolina tracked millions of music files downloaded through the OpenNap file-trading network and compared them with CD sales of the same music. The music industry frequently claims that illegal file-trading is responsible for reducing legitimate music sales. The industry says this argument is the reason for their legal campaign of suing individual file traders over the past year. However, the researchers conclude: ‘At most, file sharing can explain a tiny fraction of this decline.’ “… [04. 7.2004 @ 11:14 AM PT]

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