The Internet - The first Worldwide Tool of Unification ("The End of History")

" ... Now I give you something that few think about: What do you think the Internet is all about, historically? Citizens of all the countries on Earth can talk to one another without electronic borders. The young people of those nations can all see each other, talk to each other, and express opinions. No matter what the country does to suppress it, they're doing it anyway. They are putting together a network of consciousness, of oneness, a multicultural consciousness. It's here to stay. It's part of the new energy. The young people know it and are leading the way.... "

" ... I gave you a prophecy more than 10 years ago. I told you there would come a day when everyone could talk to everyone and, therefore, there could be no conspiracy. For conspiracy depends on separation and secrecy - something hiding in the dark that only a few know about. Seen the news lately? What is happening? Could it be that there is a new paradigm happening that seems to go against history?... " Read More …. "The End of History"- Nov 20, 2010 (Kryon channelled by Lee Carroll)

"Recalibration of Free Choice"– Mar 3, 2012 (Kryon Channelling by Lee Carroll) - (Subjects: (Old) Souls, Midpoint on 21-12-2012, Shift of Human Consciousness, Black & White vs. Color, 1 - Spirituality (Religions) shifting, Loose a Pope “soon”, 2 - Humans will change react to drama, 3 - Civilizations/Population on Earth, 4 - Alternate energy sources (Geothermal, Tidal (Paddle wheels), Wind), 5 – Financials Institutes/concepts will change (Integrity – Ethical) , 6 - News/Media/TV to change, 7 – Big Pharmaceutical company will collapse “soon”, (Keep people sick), (Integrity – Ethical) 8 – Wars will be over on Earth, Global Unity, … etc.) - (Text version)

“…5 - Integrity That May Surprise…

Have you seen innovation and invention in the past decade that required thinking out of the box of an old reality? Indeed, you have. I can't tell you what's coming, because you haven't thought of it yet! But the potentials of it are looming large. Let me give you an example, Let us say that 20 years ago, you predicted that there would be something called the Internet on a device you don't really have yet using technology that you can't imagine. You will have full libraries, buildings filled with books, in your hand - a worldwide encyclopedia of everything knowable, with the ability to look it up instantly! Not only that, but that look-up service isn't going to cost a penny! You can call friends and see them on a video screen, and it won't cost a penny! No matter how long you use this service and to what depth you use it, the service itself will be free.

Now, anyone listening to you back then would perhaps have said, "Even if we can believe the technological part, which we think is impossible, everything costs something. There has to be a charge for it! Otherwise, how would they stay in business?" The answer is this: With new invention comes new paradigms of business. You don't know what you don't know, so don't decide in advance what you think is coming based on an old energy world. ..."
(Subjects: Who/What is Kryon ?, Egypt Uprising, Iran/Persia Uprising, Peace in Middle East without Israel actively involved, Muhammad, "Conceptual" Youth Revolution, "Conceptual" Managed Business, Internet, Social Media, News Media, Google, Bankers, Global Unity,..... etc.)



Etiquette mavens say the book on manners must be rewritten, literally, to take into
account new technologies and social media (AFP Photo/Ed Jones)

A 2012 survey by Intel found that in several countries, a majority said they were put
off by "oversharing" of pictures and personal information on the
internet and smartphones (AFP Photo/Nicolas Asfouri)

German anti-hate speech group counters Facebook trolls

German anti-hate speech group counters Facebook trolls
Logo No Hate Speech Movement

Bundestag passes law to fine social media companies for not deleting hate speech

Honouring computing’s 1843 visionary, Lady Ada Lovelace. (Design of doodle by Kevin Laughlin)

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Yahoo targeted in China cyber attacks

Yahoo has over 600 million users and is second in the search market

The Yahoo e-mail accounts of foreign journalists based in China and Taiwan have been hacked, according to a Beijing-based press association.

Rival Google has been involved in a high-profile row with the Chinese government following similar cyber-attacks against Gmail accounts.

The Foreign Correspondents' Club of China (FCCC) has confirmed eight cases of Yahoo e-mail hacks in recent weeks.

Yahoo said it condemned such cyber-attacks.

But the FCCC accused Yahoo of failing to update users about the situation.

"Yahoo has not answered the FCCC's questions about the attacks, nor has it told individual mail users how the accounts were accessed," a spokesman told the news agency.

Yahoo said in a statement that it was "committed to protecting user security and privacy".

Clifford Coonan, a reporter for the Irish Times, told the Chinese news agency that he had an error message when he logged into his Yahoo account this week.

"I don't know who's doing it, what happened. They (Yahoo) haven't given any information, but it seems to be happening to journalists and academics in China, so that's why it's a little suspicious," he said.

Great Firewall

China censorship has hit the headlines since the high profile cyber-attacks against the Gmail accounts of Chinese human rights activists in January.

The hacks led the search giant to redirect its traffic to an uncensored site in Hong Kong earlier this month.

The Chinese government reacted with anger, saying it was "totally wrong" to blame the authorities for the attacks, the source code of which originated in China.

It does operate a tight control over internet content, including pornography and sensitive political material, in what is dubbed the Great Firewall of China.

Earlier in the week Google blamed the great firewall for blocking its search service, although it said it did not know if it was a technical glitch or a deliberate act.

Related Article:

Google says Vietnam mine opponents under cyber attack


Friday, March 26, 2010

Microsoft to Update Communications Server

PC World, Joab Jackson, IDG News Service, Mar 24, 2010 8:30 pm

Microsoft plans to release a new version of its Office Communications Server (OCS) by the latter half of 2010, according to Gurdeep Singh Pall, corporate vice president of Microsoft's Unified Communications Group.

The new version of the software will include new features such as Enhanced 911 (e911), deeper integration with Microsoft SharePoint 2010 and Microsoft Exchange 2010, as well as enhanced voice recognition capabilities.

The new software hasn't been officially given a name yet, though Microsoft's official working name is Communications Server '14.' Pall did not say what the 14 stands for.

OCS is software that provides instant messaging, Internet telephony, video conferencing, presence notification and other communications capabilities to large organizations.

When connected to a SIP (Session Initiation Protocol) trunk or a PSTN (public switched telephone network), OCS can replace an office's PBX (private branch exchange) equipment. That can cut the costs of long-distance calls and telephony in general, Pall argued.

"This is a complete VoIP [voice over Internet Protocol] solution," he said.

One new feature is e911, which allows a user, no matter where they are located, to dial 911 and get local assistance.

Another new feature is call parking, or the ability to put a call on hold and then resume the call from any other phone on the system.

The Communicator client has been simplified and outfitted with new features as well, Pall said. When integrated with Microsoft SharePoint 2010 and Microsoft Exchange Server 2010, the client can offer a deeper level of search. Previously, users could search the internal directories for names, but now they can search for expertise and knowledge areas as well, he said.

The software uses the SharePoint directories to harvest this expertise data. Once you find an expert, you can call them directly from the desktop, using a USB headset. For the recipient of the call, the area of expertise serves as the subject line of the incoming call notification.

Using speech recognition software, the Communicator client can also transcribe voice mails so they can be read on screen.

Speaking at the VoiceCon2010 conference in Orlando on Wednesday, Pall expressed optimism for the growing adoption of unified communications, or the ability to intermingle multiple forms of communications.

Microsoft cites a February 2009 Forrester Research report that predicts that the software market for unified communications will grow to US$14.5 billion by 2015.



Thursday, March 25, 2010

Congress slams China and Microsoft, praises Google

CNNMoney.com, by David Goldman, staff writerMarch 24, 2010: 2:58 PM ET

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Two days after Google stopped censoring search results in China, a congressional panel praised the company's actions while excoriating the Chinese government for its record on Internet censorship and human rights.

At a hearing held by the Congressional-Executive Commission on China on Wednesday, lawmakers called on China to allow a free flow of ideas on the Internet.

"China wants to participate in the marketplace of goods but keep the marketplace of ideas outside their country," said Sen. Byron Dorgan, D-N.D., "Only when China respects human rights and allows the free flow of ideas ... only then will they be treated as a full member of the international community."

While lawmakers scolded China, they roundly applauded Google for shutting down its search operations in China.

Rep. Chris Smith, R-N.J. called Google's decision "a remarkable, historic and welcomed action." He also praised Internet domain host site GoDaddy.com for leaving China.

At the same time, he lit a fire under Google's search rival Microsoft (MSFT,Fortune 500) for continuing to censor results in China and not following Google's (GOOG, Fortune 500) lead.

"They [Microsoft] need to get on the right side of human rights rather than enabling tyranny, which they're doing right now," Smith said.

Smith said he supported the Global Online Freedom Act, which would require tech companies doing business in China to disclose what they're censoring. He called on China to do "more than passing lip service" to Google and pass the act.

Due to the wide interest about the implications of Google's decision on the United States' diplomatic relations with China, the hearing was packed. Journalists and other spectators stood two rows deep in the back of the hearing room.

On Monday, Google began redirecting its Chinese users to its Hong Kong site, google.com.hk, which offers uncensored search results.

Google's search site for Chinese users is now hosted on servers that are in Hong Kong. Since Google is no longer hosting its search operations within mainland China, Google no longer needs to adhere to China's censorship laws.

It is now up to the Chinese government to block access to the results it finds objectionable.

-- CNNMoney.com Deputy Managing Editor Rich Barbieri contributed to this story

Related Articles:

Chinese Google Decision Allows All to Save Face

Chinese official: Google's move will not affect investment

Google Official Calls for Action on Web Restrictions

GoDaddy.com plans to stop registering domain names in China


Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Google still doing business in China

Radio Netherlands Worldwide, by Sigrid Deters and Perro de Jong, 23 March 2010 - 5:25pm

Google's decision to stop censoring search results on the Chinese mainland by moving its search service to Hong Kong will probably not have a major impact on the ability of Chinese users to gain access to uncensored information. According to preliminary results of a study conducted by the Chinese service of Radio Netherlands Worldwide there is, as yet, no reason for panic.

With nearly 400 million internet users, China has the world's largest search engine market. Google gained around 20 percent of the market after it reached an agreement with the Chinese authorities to employ self-censorship when it came to 'sensitive' topics. This figure is far behind that of China's largest search engine, Baidu, but still a respectable number.

Many people visit the Chinese website of Radio Netherlands Worldwide every month thanks to the Google search engine. Most of them arrive at the site after entering search words such as 'gay' or 'human rights'. Bo Xiao of RNW’s Chinese service says that when Google announced it would not cooperate with China’s desired censorship his first thought was “ people will no longer be able to find us."

Tibet

So far, the opposite appears to be the case. Mr Bo exclaims in surprise: "The number of visitors via Google has actually risen enormously!" And instead of search terms such as 'gay', the politically much more sensitive term 'Tibet' has a high score. Apparently people are testing whether Google is still functioning. Which seems to be the case.

Although Google has shut down its self-censored Chinese search engine www.google.cn, Chinese users are now being redirected via its unrestricted site in the former British colony of Hong Kong www.google.com.hk, where other laws apply. Most Chinese visitors were directed to Radio Netherlands Worldwide via the Hong Kong search engine.

The 'Great Firewall'

The difference is that www.google.cn filtered out searches which the Chinese authorities deemed undesirable. However, this is not the case with other Google search engines. Anyone who conducts an internet search on a site in China is confronted with the government's filtering system 'The Great Firewall', which unrelentingly censors certain search terms.

In effect, everything remains as before. The only question is whether the Chinese authorities will allow the relatively subtle form of censorship that still exists or shut down access to Google altogether, as happened earlier with popular social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter.

Björn van Veen works for Tribal China, which supports Dutch and other Western internet sites in China. He does not think it will go that far. "They have no interest in thwarting Google since the company still has a research department in China, which earns the government money."

Also, one of the reasons why the authorities have blocked access to social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook is that they allow users to form communities and share information, user to user. As the information isn't all neatly located in one central place, it's hard for a firewall to intercept 'undesirable' content. Search engines such as Google, on the other hand, are relatively static. That makes them easy to control - by firewall, for example.

Internet giant

Bo Xiao of Radio Netherlands Worldwide warns that if the conflict between China and Google escalates and the internet giant's search engines are blocked, then the consequences will be serious.

Google may not control a large part of the Chinese market, but those who prefer Google to Baido are - according to a survey conducted by the Chinese organisation CNNIC - well-educated, or are people such as scientists with many international contacts. These very active internet users would be the people hardest hit.

Which is why a Chinese biologist issued a warning in the United States newspaper Washington Post that: without Google, there is "only darkness".|

Related Articles:

Google row: China's army of censors battles to defeat the internet

A card, a letter and flowers are placed on the Google logo at its China headquarters building in Beijing after it moved its Chinese-language search engine to Hong Kong. Photograph: Feng Li/Getty Images


Tuesday, March 23, 2010

White House Leaned on Twitter to Pass Health Bill

Jakarta Globe, March 23, 2010

As the clock ticked down to the historic U.S. healthcare vote on Sunday and congressional leaders scrambled to get holdout Democratic lawmakers on board, the White House was all-a-Twitter.

White House staff used the microblogging site to keep the momentum going, keeping track of which Democratic lawmakers had changed their minds and decided to vote in favor of the bill, finally giving the party a narrow majority to pass it.

Their short text messages, known as tweets, also gave the nearly 2 million registered followers of the White House’s Twitter feed a blow-by-blow account of how President Barack Obama was spending his time as the vote neared.

Obama’s White House is increasingly using Internet media like Twitter, YouTube and Facebook to talk directly to Americans and mobilize grassroots support for the president’s ambitious legislative agenda.

Twitter’s 140-character messages offer an immediacy that is attractive to a White House known for being tightly controlled and keen to get its message out in a rolling, 24-hour-a-day cable news network environment.

“It is a logical extension of their campaign strategy where they used the Internet and viral videos to spread their messages as quickly and as thoroughly as possible,” said Dan Amundson, research director at the Center for Media and Public Affairs at George Mason University in Washington.

“The traditional thing everybody in Washington tries to do is speak past the media ... to speak directly to the public.”

White House spokesman Robert Gibbs, a recent Twitter convert, made news on March 12 when he used the service to announce that the president was delaying his trip to Indonesia and Australia so that he could focus on healthcare.

Quizzed at a news briefing about his use of Twitter for the announcement, Gibbs said: “Twitter is a quick medium to get information out and we’ll probably use it more often.”

Gibbs, who has more than 42,000 followers on his Twitter account, tweeted after passage of the healthcare vote on Sunday: “It’s 1:05 AM and finally leaving the White House ... spent some time celebrating with a proud POTUS -- not abt him he told us, but for America.”

The ease of communication offered by Twitter has a downside. It also makes it easy for disgruntled citizens to make threats against public figures, including the president.

The Secret Service confirmed on Monday it was investigating a conservative blogger who New York’s Daily News said used his Twitter account on Sunday night to call for Obama’s assassination.

“We survived the assassinations of Lincoln and Kennedy. We’ll surely get over a bullet 2 Barack Obama’s head,” the blogger wrote, according to the newspaper.

Secret Service spokesman Malcolm Wiley told Reuters the threat was being investigated but he declined to say whether the man had been questioned or faced arrest.

“With the growth of social networking sites we have seen more threats that way,” Wiley said. “That is just a reflection of society.”

Reuters

A new approach to China: an update

Google Blog

3/22/2010 12:03:00 PM

On January 12, we announced on this blog that Google and more than twenty other U.S. companies had been the victims of a sophisticated cyber attack originating from China, and that during our investigation into these attacks we had uncovered evidence to suggest that the Gmail accounts of dozens of human rights activists connected with China were being routinely accessed by third parties, most likely via phishing scams or malware placed on their computers. We also made clear that these attacks and the surveillance they uncovered—combined with attempts over the last year to further limit free speech on the web in China including the persistent blocking of websites such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google Docs and Blogger—had led us to conclude that we could no longer continue censoring our results on Google.cn.

So earlier today we stopped censoring our search services—Google Search, Google News, and Google Images—on Google.cn. Users visiting Google.cn are now being redirected to Google.com.hk, where we are offering uncensored search in simplified Chinese, specifically designed for users in mainland China and delivered via our servers in Hong Kong. Users in Hong Kong will continue to receive their existing uncensored, traditional Chinese service, also from Google.com.hk. Due to the increased load on our Hong Kong servers and the complicated nature of these changes, users may see some slowdown in service or find some products temporarily inaccessible as we switch everything over.

Figuring out how to make good on our promise to stop censoring search on Google.cn has been hard. We want as many people in the world as possible to have access to our services, including users in mainland China, yet the Chinese government has been crystal clear throughout our discussions that self-censorship is a non-negotiable legal requirement. We believe this new approach of providing uncensored search in simplified Chinese from Google.com.hk is a sensible solution to the challenges we've faced—it's entirely legal and will meaningfully increase access to information for people in China. We very much hope that the Chinese government respects our decision, though we are well aware that it could at any time block access to our services. We will therefore be carefully monitoring access issues, and have created this new web page, which we will update regularly each day, so that everyone can see which Google services are available in China.

In terms of Google's wider business operations, we intend to continue R&D work in China and also to maintain a sales presence there, though the size of the sales team will obviously be partially dependent on the ability of mainland Chinese users to access Google.com.hk. Finally, we would like to make clear that all these decisions have been driven and implemented by our executives in the United States, and that none of our employees in China can, or should, be held responsible for them. Despite all the uncertainty and difficulties they have faced since we made our announcement in January, they have continued to focus on serving our Chinese users and customers. We are immensely proud of them.

Posted by David Drummond, SVP, Corporate Development and Chief Legal Officer

Related Articles:

Criticism and regret in China over Google

Internet firm in China stops using Google services

China condemns decision by Google to lift censorship

Google's Search for Web Freedom

Google stops censoring search results in China


Friday, March 19, 2010

Broadcast Yourself

Google -YouTube- Blog, THURSDAY, MARCH 18, 2010

Around the globe, YouTube has become a metaphor for the democratizing power of the Internet and information. YouTube gives unknown performers, filmmakers, and artists new ways to promote their work to a global audience and rise to worldwide fame; makes it possible for political candidates and elected officials to interact with the public in new ways; enables first-hand reporting from war zones and from inside repressive regimes; and lets students of all ages and backgrounds audit classes at leading universities.

Yet YouTube and sites like it will cease to exist in their current form if Viacom and others have their way in their lawsuits against YouTube.

In their opening briefs in the Viacom vs. YouTube lawsuit (which have been made public today), Viacom and plaintiffs claim that YouTube doesn't do enough to keep their copyrighted material off the site. We ask the judge to rule that the safe harbors in the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (the "DMCA") protect YouTube from the plaintiffs' claims. Congress enacted the DMCA to benefit the public by permitting open platforms like YouTube to flourish on the Web. It gives online services protection from copyright liability if they remove unauthorized content once they’re on notice of its existence on the site.

With some minor exceptions, all videos are automatically copyrighted from the moment they are created, regardless of who creates them. This means all videos on YouTube are copyrighted -- from Charlie Bit My Finger, to the video of your cat playing the piano and the video you took at your cousin’s wedding. The issue in this lawsuit is not whether a video is copyrighted, but whether it's authorized to be on the site. The DMCA (and common sense) recognizes that content owners, not service providers like YouTube, are in the best position to know whether a specific video is authorized to be on an Internet hosting service.

Because content owners large and small use YouTube in so many different ways, determining a particular copyright holder’s preference or a particular uploader’s authority over a given video on YouTube is difficult at best. And in this case, it was made even harder by Viacom’s own practices.

For years, Viacom continuously and secretly uploaded its content to YouTube, even while publicly complaining about its presence there. It hired no fewer than 18 different marketing agencies to upload its content to the site. It deliberately "roughed up" the videos to make them look stolen or leaked. It opened YouTube accounts using phony email addresses. It even sent employees to Kinko's to upload clips from computers that couldn't be traced to Viacom. And in an effort to promote its own shows, as a matter of company policy Viacom routinely left up clips from shows that had been uploaded to YouTube by ordinary users. Executives as high up as the president of Comedy Central and the head of MTV Networks felt "very strongly" that clips from shows like The Daily Show and The Colbert Report should remain on YouTube.

Viacom's efforts to disguise its promotional use of YouTube worked so well that even its own employees could not keep track of everything it was posting or leaving up on the site. As a result, on countless occasions Viacom demanded the removal of clips that it had uploaded to YouTube, only to return later to sheepishly ask for their reinstatement. In fact, some of the very clips that Viacom is suing us over were actually uploaded by Viacom itself.

Given Viacom’s own actions, there is no way YouTube could ever have known which Viacom content was and was not authorized to be on the site. But Viacom thinks YouTube should somehow have figured it out. The legal rule that Viacom seeks would require YouTube -- and every Web platform -- to investigate and police all content users upload, and would subject those web sites to crushing liability if they get it wrong.

Viacom’s brief misconstrues isolated lines from a handful of emails produced in this case to try to show that YouTube was founded with bad intentions, and asks the judge to believe that, even though Viacom tried repeatedly to buy YouTube, YouTube is like Napster or Grokster.

Nothing could be further from the truth. YouTube has long been a leader in providing media companies with 21st century tools to control, distribute, and make money from their content online. Working in cooperation with rights holders, our Content ID system scans over 100 years worth of video every day and lets rights holders choose whether to block, leave up, or monetize those videos. Over 1,000 media companies are now using Content ID -- including every major U.S. network broadcaster, movie studio, and record label -- and the majority of those companies choose to make money from user uploaded clips rather than block them. This is a true win-win that reflects our long-standing commitment to working with rights holders to give them the choices they want, while advancing YouTube as a platform for creativity.

We look forward to defending YouTube, and upholding the balance that Congress struck in the DMCA to protect the rights of copyright holders, the progress of technological innovation, and the public interest in free expression.

Posted by Zahavah Levine, YouTube Chief Counsel

Related Articles:

Google-Viacom Fight Gets Ugly, and Public

Google slams Viacom for secret YouTube uploads


Thursday, March 18, 2010

Google Said to Work on TV With Intel, Sony, Logitech

Business Week

By Ian King, Brian Womack and Ari Levy, Bloomberg, March 18, 2010, 12:00 AM EDT

March 18 (Bloomberg) -- Google Inc. is working to bring Web software to televisions through a partnership with Intel Corp., Sony Corp. and Logitech International SA, according to two people involved in the discussions with the companies.

The project, called Google TV, uses Intel chips, with Switzerland’s Logitech developing a keyboard that operates as a remote control, said one of the people, who declined to be named because the matter isn’t public.

Google, expanding beyond its main Internet-search business, would challenge Yahoo! Inc., TiVo Inc., Rovi Corp. and Microsoft Corp. in delivering the Internet to TVs. Intel, meanwhile, is counting on the consumer-electronics market to bolster sales of its Atom chip, which already powers netbooks. The company aims to get Atom into TVs, Blu-ray players and set-top boxes.

“It’s a sign of the legitimacy of Internet connectivity moving well beyond the PC and mobile spaces, which Google has tackled already,” said Kurt Scherf, an analyst at industry researcher Parks Associates in Dallas. “It completes the third leg of the stool.”

Google entered the mobile market in 2008 with its Android operating system, which now runs on phones from manufacturers including Motorola Inc. and HTC Corp.

Gabriel Stricker, a spokesman for Mountain View, California-based Google, declined to comment, as did Greg Belloni, a U.S.-based spokesman for Sony, and Pamela McCracken, a spokeswoman for Logitech. The New York Times reported yesterday on Google’s plans. Intel spokeswoman Mary Ninow said she was unable to confirm or deny the report.

Advanced Models

Google rose 0.1 percent to close at $565.56 on the Nasdaq Stock Market yesterday, while Intel advanced 1.1 percent to the highest level since Sept. 2, 2008. Sony gained 0.9 percent to 3,455 yen as of 12:51 p.m. on the Tokyo Stock Exchange.

“If you have two TVs almost the same price, one with Google functionality and another with nothing, you are more inclined to go with Google,” said Sandeep Aggarwal, an analyst at Collins Stewart LLC in San Francisco. “Google has a much bigger role to play on TV now than maybe three to four years back. In addition to advertising, they can provide a lot of user utilities.”

Sony, the No. 3 TV maker after Samsung Electronics Co., and LG Electronics Inc., plans to introduce an “advanced” TV model as part of its efforts to turn around its TV business, the company said Nov. 19. The maker of Bravia sets said at the time it aims to make its TV operations profitable in the 12 months ending March 2011, the first time in seven years.

Not Unique

“This kind of thing won’t be unique to Sony. If Sony doesn’t do it, Apple may step forward and take the lead,” Yuji Fujimori, a Tokyo-based analyst at Barclays Capital said by phone. “It’s hard to tell how the new product will help Sony yet.”

More than one-quarter of TVs purchased by U.S. consumers in January already are capable of linking to the Web through a Wi- Fi or Ethernet connection, according to researcher ISuppli Corp.

Web-enabled TVs currently on the market allow users to watch YouTube videos, view online photo albums, play games and stream movies from Netflix Inc. Yahoo’s TV software is installed in models from Sony, Samsung, LG Electronics and Vizio Inc.

TV Web Surfing

Rovi, formerly known as Macrovision Solutions Corp., developed a program called TotalGuide designed to let consumers navigate Web content on their TVs. The Santa Clara, California- based company will announce partnerships with manufacturers in May for products that will enter the market next year, Chief Executive Officer Alfred Amoroso said in an interview last week.

“We’re enabling the industry,” Amoroso said. He called the service an “entertainment portal for the home.”

To strike deals with TV manufacturers, Google needs to show that it can bring its advertising technology to TVs and is willing to share the revenue, Parks Associates’ Scherf said. Google has struggled to generate revenue from TV ad software that it started testing in 2007. The program included a deal to sell ads on EchoStar Communications Corp.’s satellite-TV service.

For Santa Clara-based Intel, which generates 90 percent of its revenue from PC chips, Google TV is part of a broader effort to get its processors into home electronics. At the Consumer Electronics Show in January, CEO Paul Otellini demonstrated a set-top box containing a processor from Intel. Instead of the traditional text program guide, users could see a display with multiple live programs showing at once.

Intel Executive Vice President Dadi Perlmutter said earlier this month at a conference in San Francisco that a “big announcement” would be made later this year.

“Many things are going to happen to make TVs an Internet device, a computing device,” Perlmutter said.

--With assistance from Mariko Yasu in Tokyo and Mark McCord in Hong Kong. Editors: Nick Turner, Jonathan Annells

To contact the reporters on this story: Ian King in San Francisco at ianking@bloomberg.net; Brian Womack in San Francisco at Bwomack1@bloomberg.net; Ari Levy in San Francisco at alevy5@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Jonathan Thaw at jthaw@bloomberg.net


Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Procter & Gamble Tries a Bring-Your-Laptop-to-Work Program

Procter & Gamble Co. is letting several hundred of its employees use their own laptops at work as part of an experiment -- one of numerous efforts by companies trying to keep workers happy.

CIO Online, by Patrick Thibodeau

TUE, MARCH 09, 2010 — Computerworld — Procter & Gamble Co. (P&G), which is ranked 20th on the Fortune 500 list, can afford to buy its employees laptops. But it is instead letting several hundred of its workers use their own laptops as part of a workplace experiment.

This pilot program is based on a simple idea: many of P&G's younger employees would rather use their own laptops than corporate-issued systems.

"The employees love it," said Jim Fortner, vice president of IT development and operations at P&G's business services division. He acknowledged that a number of legal and security issues have not yet been sorted out.

To mitigate potential problems, Fortner said P&G got its legal and human resources teams involved early to consider the pilot program's implications. For instance, what happens if the company has to get information off an employee-owned laptop to respond to a lawsuit? To head off potential problems, the pilot involves junior employees and new hires unlikely to be handling sensitive company information. "They are in a low-risk category," Fortner said.

Fortner, who described the pilot program during a panel discussion about employee workplace issues at Computerworld 's Premier 100 conference, is optimistic that any issues can be resolved. And he feels certain the pilot program may well become standard practice at P&G.

"It's going to happen -- I'm convinced," said Fortner, who also believes the program can help reduce the cost of corporate PC support.

While the use of personal devices on a traditional corporate network can create security and legal issues, there's a potential solution: cloud adoption, said Cora Carmody, the CIO of Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. When work is done in the cloud, "you care less about what they bring in on their laptops," Carmody said.

One reason to consider allowing employees to use personal devices in the workplace is to bridge the expectations of younger and older employees. That way, companies can create an atmosphere that helps retain younger workers, while keeping older workers happy.

With that in mind, Emily Ashworth, vice president and CIO at American Water Works Company Inc. (AWK), has tried to make the workplace more comfortable and appealing. That's why Ashworth, among others, had couches installed at the utility. Younger employees started working from them and having their calls forwarded to their cell phones, she said. "It's fascinating to watch the veterans sort of perceive that as lazy."

In fact, Ashworth said, American Water Works has had to help some employees understand that co-workers like to work in different ways. "I sometimes think my job is part therapist," she said.

Patrick Thibodeau covers SaaS and enterprise applications, outsourcing, government IT policies, data centers and IT workforce issues for Computerworld . Follow Patrick on Twitter at @DCgov or subscribe to Patrick's RSS feed . His e-mail address is pthibodeau@computerworld.com .

Related Articles:

P&G's Clout with HP Reaches to the CEO's Office

China probes HP handling of consumer complaints

Microsoft Previews Internet Explorer 9

Unveiled at the MIX10 conference in Las Vegas, an early version of IE9 Web browser draws praise from Mozilla.

InformationWeek, by Thomas Claburn, InformationWeek, March 16, 2010 02:22 PM

At the MIX10 conference in Las Vegas, Microsoft on Tuesday signaled its intent to remain a contender in the Web browser battle by announcing the availability of Internet Explorer 9 Platform Preview.

Dean Hachamovitch, general manager of Internet Explorer at Microsoft, characterized IE9 as "the first browser to take standard Web patterns that developers use and run them better on modern PCs through Windows."

Find out how to increase availability while reducing data center energy consumption

By "better," Hachamovitch means that IE9 supports Web standards and is fast. IE9 supports many new elements in HTML5, the evolving next-generation standard for Web pages, including CSS3, Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG), XHTML parsing, and tags for H.264/MPEG4 and MP3/AAC codecs. Mozilla fans will note the absence of Ogg Vorbis and Ogg Theora support.

IE9 also includes support for hardware-acceleration, to hasten the rendering of graphics and text.

"IE9 is the first browser to provide fully hardware-accelerated SVG support," said Hachamovitch in a blog post. "The IE9 developer tools support SVG as well, and we are excited to see what developers build on top of modern hardware with a platform that has great performance and internal consistency."

IE9 features a new JavaScript engine called "Chakra" that puts the preliminary version of IE9 ahead of Mozilla Firefox 3.6 in a WebKit SunSpider JavaScript benchmark test and just behind Apple Safari 4.05, Google Chrome 4 and 5, and Opera 10.5.

Perhaps most noteworthy, IE9 performs about six times faster than IE8 on this test.

IE9 scored a 55/100 on the Acid3 test, which evaluates Web page standards compliance. Firefox 3.6 scored 92/100. But Hachamovitch insists IE9's score will improve as it moves toward general release.

Microsoft also committed to contributing to the ongoing development of the jQuery JavaScript Library and to jQuery interoperability with ASP.NET in order to improve the development process for Web applications. And it released SDKs for the Open Data Protocol (OData), a data portability protocol based on HTTP and Atom that facilitates the exchange of data between .NET, Java, PHP, Objective-C, and JavaScript.

For Microsoft, IE9 has to be a hit. The company's overall share of the browser market, which includes Internet Explorer versions 6 through 8, has been declining more or less steadily for years. This has been due to security problems, particularly in IE6 and IE7, and failure to keep pace with the competition.

In February, Microsoft had 61.58% of the global browser market, according to NetApplications, down from about 80% two years ago.

In a blog post last November, when details about IE9 had yet to be released, Asa Dotzler, Mozilla's director of community development, predicted that Microsoft would surprise everyone with the seriousness of its effort to restore its credibility in the browser race.

"Microsoft dug a huge hole when it mostly abandoned IE 6 and the Web from 2001 until 2006," he wrote. "Their early efforts at ramping back up with IE 7 were a big disappointment to most Web developers and while their efforts with IE 8 were much better, they're still at least a full generation behind the modern browsers."

The generation gap however appears to be closing rapidly. In a follow-up post on Tuesday, he wrote, "Welcome back, Microsoft!"

Related Article:

Microsoft: IE9 Won't Support Windows XP, Period


Tuesday, March 16, 2010

It's Official: Facebook Rules the Web

PC World, Ian Paul, Mar 16, 2010 4:13 pm

Facebook ruled the Web last week just squeaking past Google to become the most popular online destination among United States users. For the week ending March 13, Facebook claimed 7.07 percent of U.S. Internet visits, while Google was right behind the social network with 7.03 percent, according to metrics firm Experian Hitwise. Compared to the same week in 2009, Facebook visits grew by 185 percent, while Google was comparatively stagnant with a mere 9 percent increase in visits.

(Chart reprinted from Experian Hitwise)

Not the first time

Facebook has been ranked as the number one online destination before, but this is the first time the social network has held that title for an entire week. During last year's holiday season, Facebook beat out Google on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and New Year's Day, Experian Hitwise says. The social network also took top site honors among U.S. visitors during the weekend of March 6 and 7. It's not clear why Facebook would have beat out Google during the recent March weekend, but one possible explanation for Facebook's holiday dominance is the desire for users to connect and share holiday experiences with loved ones and friends scattered across the country and the globe.

The Buzz about Facebook

Google is trying to counter the popularity of social networking sites with Google Buzz, a service designed to share content through your Gmail inbox. However, Google has run into problems with Buzz and has been heavily criticized for Buzz's poorly designed privacy controls. Some of these privacy concerns have been resolved, but it's not yet clear if Gmail users are adopting Buzz in sufficient numbers to impact competing social networks.

Facebook keeps on truckin'

No stranger to privacy concerns itself, Facebook continues to grow at a healthy pace, and now boasts more than 400 million members worldwide. The social network is also starting to become an integral part of the Web with its sign-in service Facebook Connect, which enables users to get around third-party Web site registration with just one click (a feature recently adopted by this blog). Google has a competing service called Google Friend Connect, but Facebook's alternative has been far more successful in terms of mainstream adoption. You can check out the blog All Facebook for a complete list of the major Web sites using Facebook Connect.

Facebook is also reportedly getting ready to compete with location-based services, and is expected to unveil location-aware status updates and other location features in the near future.

Despite Facebook's recent growth, however, I have to wonder if it will be able to beat out Google on a regular basis. Facebook may be the dominant social network in the U.S., but I doubt we've reached a point where it's more practical to turn to Facebook instead of Google as an important source of information. Well, not yet, anyway.

Connect with Ian on Twitter (@ianpaul) or on Google Buzz.


China without Google

'A LOSE-LOSE SCENARIO'

Kompas, Selasa, 16 Maret 2010 | 13:39 WIB

People watch a 3D TV set using special googles. (AFP)

BEIJING, KOMPAS.com – China without Google — a prospect that looks increasingly likely — could mean no more maps on mobile phones. A free music service that has helped to fight piracy might be in jeopardy. China's fledgling Web outfits would face less pressure to improve, eroding their ability to one day compete abroad.

The extent of a possible Google Inc. pullout from China in its dispute with the communist government over censorship and hacking is unclear. But on top of a local search site that Google says it may close, services that might be affected range from advertising support for Chinese companies to online entertainment.

"If Google leaves, it's a lose-lose scenario, instead of Google loses and others gain," said Edward Yu, president of Analysys International, a Beijing research firm.

Chinese news reports say Google is on the verge of shutting its China site, Google.cn, and has stopped censoring results. A Google spokesman, Scott Rubin, denied censorship had stopped and would not confirm whether Google.cn might close.

"We have not changed our operations in China," Rubin said by phone from Google's headquarters in Mountain View, California. CEO Eric Schmidt said last week something would happen soon, and Rubin said he had no further details.

Google says it is in talks with Beijing following its Jan. 12 announcement that it no longer wants to comply with Beijing's extensive Web controls. But China's industry minister insisted Friday the company must obey Chinese law, which appears to leave few options other than closing Google.cn, which has about 35 percent of China's search market.

Such a step could have repercussions for major Chinese companies as well as local Web surfers. It would deliver a windfall to local rival Baidu Inc., China's major search engine, with 60 percent of the market. But other companies rely on Google for search, maps and other services and might be forced to find alternatives.

China Mobile Ltd., the world's biggest phone company by subscribers, with 527 million accounts, uses Google for mobile search and maps. Baidu offers mobile search but China Mobile passed up a partnership with it earlier after they failed to agree on terms, according to industry analysts. Millions of mobile customers might lose access to Google's Chinese-language map service.

A key issue is whether Beijing, angry and embarrassed by Google's public defiance, would allow the company to continue running other operations, including advertising and a fledgling mobile phone businesses in China if Google.cn closes.

China promotes Internet use for business and education but bars access to sites run by human rights and political activists and some news outlets. Officials who defend China's controls by pointing to countries that bar content such as child pornography are stung that Google has drawn attention to how much more pervasive Chinese limits are.

Chinese Web surfers are blocked from seeing Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and major blog-hosting services abroad and a Google pullout would leave them increasingly isolated.

Google hopes to keep operating its Beijing research and development center, advertising sales offices and mobile phone business, according to a person familiar with the company's thinking. But the person said the company won't do that if it believes its decision to stop censoring search results will jeopardize employees in China. Industry analysts estimate Google has a work force of 700 in China.

The government says Chinese mobile phone carriers will be allowed to use Google's Android operating system but there has been no word on whether efforts to sell its own phones in China might be affected. Google postponed the launch of two phones with a major Chinese carrier due to the dispute.

Uncertainty also surrounds Google's China music portal, a free, advertising-supported service launched last year in partnership with four global music companies and 14 independent labels. Industry analysts say it has helped to undercut China's rampant music piracy by offering an alternative to unlicensed copying.

The music service is run by Top100.cn, a company part-owned by Google, but can be accessed only through Google.cn. Employees at Top100.cn referred questions to executives who did not immediately answer phone calls.

"Without that, are we back to, `Piracy wins'?" said Duncan Clark, managing director of BDA China Ltd., a technology market research firm. "Piracy thrives because of censorship."

The biggest impact of a Google departure could lie behind the scenes, where Chinese companies, many of them small entrepreneurs, rely on its AdWords advertising service, Gmail e-mail and documents services.

Those might be disrupted if Beijing turns up Internet filters to block access to Google's sites abroad. Its U.S. site has a Chinese-language search engine but is already inaccessible due to government filters.

In an uncomfortable irony for Beijing, Google might suffer little commercial loss from a pullout while China's own companies are hurt.

The bulk of Google's estimated $300 million in 2009 revenues in China came from export-oriented companies that would need to keep advertising on its sites abroad even if Google.cn closes, according to Yu.

"We believe the majority of revenue would still be kept on, with keyword purchases listed on Google.com instead of Google.cn," he said.

The loss of competitive pressure from Google also might slow Chinese development in search and other Internet services, Yu said.

"This is definitely a bad thing for Chinese companies that want to go abroad in the future," he said.

The industry minister, Li Yizhong, said Friday that China's Internet industry would develop without Google. But even some Chinese industry leaders who normally toe the government line in public are warning that controls on Internet companies and media are handicapping their growth.

Beijing has steadily tightened controls over Internet content and foreign investment in the industry. Video sharing sites must have state-owned media outlets as partners. People in the industry say it is getting harder to register privately financed sites.

"Without full and fair market competition, there will be no quality, no excellence, no employment opportunities, no stability and no real rise of China," said the chairman of major Chinese portal Sohu Inc., Charles Zhang, in a speech in February, according to a report on Sohu's Web site.

"How do we do this practically?" Zhang said. "The problem is complicated, but the fundamental point is to limit the power of the government."

Related Article:

Google "99.9 pct" sure to shut China search engine: report