- Open-source software in the recession: Born free | The Economist - Good layman's overview on where open source stands today.
- Slacker Personal Radio - Listen to Free Internet Radio Stations - This looks pretty good.
- Cool Tools: Theo Gray's Mad Science - Dangerous home experiments. Whee!
- Decoding antiquity: Eight scripts that still can't be read - life - 27 May 2009 - New Scientist
- Flashonomics: Buying Flash Memory - James Duncan Davidson - James Duncan Davidson - Good writeup on buying flash memory. Would love to see actual data though as opposed to a somewhat circular argument about buying name brands. (Though that's basically what I do as well.)
- Cooper's Hill Cheese-Rolling - The Big Picture - Boston.com - This is hilarious.
- Ben Casnocha: The Blog: Farmers Didn't Invent Tractors. They Were Busy Farming. - "But a lot of innovation doesn't come from the people who know the industry the best. That's because the closer you are to how something works now, the harder it is to imagine a new and better way of doing things."
Thursday, May 28, 2009
Posted by Gordon Haff at 1:32 PM
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
- VC perspective: Can enterprise software companies do SaaS? | IT Project Failures | ZDNet.com - "To some degree, economics and culture militate against large, established enterprise software players transitioning smoothly to SaaS delivery. However, in the end, I believe investment capability is the factor that trumps all others."
- eBay Dying Because It’s No Longer Fun? Hogwash! « SmoothSpan Blog - This strikes me as an informed analysis of eBay's problems. They comport pretty closely with some of my feelings as an eBay user.
- With Virtual Iron, Oracle Bought a Big Loss - Bits Blog - NYTimes.com - "The documents indicate that Virtual Iron had just $3.4 million in revenue last year. That’s a big rise over $1.5 million in 2007. But Virtual Iron sure spent a lot of money to get that revenue. Its sales, marketing, research, development and administrative costs were $17.7 million last year, up from $13.6 million in 2007. So, in 2008, Virtual Iron posted a loss of $15.3 million."
- 10 Swear Words or Curse Words You Don’t Know | HaveMacWillBlog (aka Robin Bloor’s Blog)
- Irving Wladawsky-Berger: The 2009 MIT Sloan CIO Symposium - Thoughtful discussion on cloud computing.
- ongoing · The Web vs. the Fallacies - Read this.
- Seesmic Adds Facebook Comments, Now I’m Looking For A Raft (Or A Boat) - I agree. No home runs yet on really managing feeds effectively.
- Barack Obama's biggest critic: Charles Krauthammer - Ben Smith - POLITICO.com - Don't agree on a number of points but worth reading.
- PIP - Online Classifieds.pdf (application/pdf Object) - Pew Report on classifieds.
- Advertising Expenditures - Newspaper Association of America: Advancing Newspaper Media for the 21st Century - If I get a chance, I'd like to do a bit deeper analysis of this data.
- Intel drags feet on Itanium quad-core (again) • The Register - A good rundown on the Tukwila slippage situation. I'm less negative than Timothy on IBM's high-end Power situation but otherwise a pretty accurate if snarky analysis.
- Fault Tolerance (Re)Discovered - News - eWeekEurope.co.uk - Discussion (from Stratus POV) of hardware-based FT vs. software-based.
- I.B.M. Unveils Software to Find Trends in Vast Data Sets - NYTimes.com
- Freeform Comment: A(nother) Take on Cloud: ‘Nothing to Worry About’ - "None of this really matters if all you care about is the outcome you want to achieve from a third party service provider. For practical purposes today it might be easier to consider ‘The Cloud’ as simply a consolidation term, an umbrella term under which all the different types of third party service providers that existed in more narrowly defined boxes in the past now live."
- Counting Down to the End of Moore’s Law - Bits Blog - NYTimes.com - "“We’re looking at a brick wall five years down the road,” Eli Harari, the chief executive of SanDisk, said to me earlier this week." We've heard this before of course. And it's not clear that our demand for denser/cheaper flash is going to necessarily have the same imperative going forward. But Moore's Law drives so much in IT that these trends are worth pondering.
- James Governor’s Monkchips » Cloud Computing: On Structural Advantages and Lessons From History #EMCWorld - Generally agree with James here. AT&T is probably the best counter-example but even that is week.
- Forrester's five phases of open-source success | The Open Road - CNET News - Somewhat amusing but pretty accurate in my experience.
Posted by Gordon Haff at 10:23 AM
Thursday, May 21, 2009
- Sharing Where You Are When You Care to Share | Nick Wingfield | Personal Technology | AllThingsD - All the new geo-related stuff coming online could get me really paranoid if I wanted to. We're heading into an era where there's the potential for much closer linkages between our online identity and our physical presence.
- Blogola: The FTC Takes On Paid Posts - BusinessWeek - The beginning section of the article seems to grossly overstate what is actually being talked about. The scenario discussed is standard practice for all sorts of reviews from well before blogging even began--and often without the disclosure that was made in this case (e.g. a good proportion of the book and album reviews ever written). [Apparently, if you read the comments, the problem is that the writer seriously misrepresented the situation here. To his credit, it's now been corrected but it's now a pretty lousy example to lead off the story.]
- Gawker's Nick Denton: 'Original Reporting Will Be Rewarded' - Advertising Age - Digital - "Remember the dream of micropublishing? A few years ago, we still believed that costs were so low and online advertising so magical that the most arcane of subject matters could attract a viable audience. That dream is dead. We'll spend our time and money on sites such as Gizmodo, Kotaku and Gawker -- where we already have the scale or soon will. " This was much what happened with cable TV as well. I'm less comfortable--though I'm not sure he's wrong--with the implication in this interview that it's not clear that "serious" news has a profitable audience.
- Wild IIlusions: The economics of the $9.99 ebook - There's not much here that I agree with. For example, it's not clear to me how disaggregating functions necessarily makes the cost go down at the same level of overall quality. Sure, you can cut out design, editing, and so forth or spend less time/money on them but you don't get something for nothing.
- Op-Ed Columnist - In Praise of Dullness - NYTimes.com - "What mattered, it turned out, were execution and organizational skills. The traits that correlated most powerfully with success were attention to detail, persistence, efficiency, analytic thoroughness and the ability to work long hours."
- MySQL forking heats up, but not yet to the benefit of non-GPLed storage engine vendors | DBMS2 -- DataBase Management System Services - The interaction between MySQL and storage engines would appear to be one of those corner cases where reasonable people can disagree as to whether GPL MySql required GPL storage engine.
- How the E-Book Will Change the Way We Read and Write - WSJ.com - I also wonder book length will be affected. The author of this article doesn't discuss this aspect, but shorter books seems a very possible outcome of a lot of the dynamics he mentions.
- BookFinder.com Journal: Breakdown of book costs - This is interesting. Note how relatively small the slice that's eliminated in an ebook is--under 20 percent in this example (I assume the Wholesaler costs are eliminated as well as the printing).
Posted by Gordon Haff at 7:29 AM
Thursday, May 14, 2009
- Sizing Up "Code" with 20/20 Hindsight | Freedom to Tinker - "It seems to me that the Internet is rather less malleable than Lessig imagined a decade ago. We would have gotten more or less the Internet we got regardless of what Congress or the FCC did over the last decade. And therefore, Lessig's urgent call to action—his argument that we must act in 1999 to ensure that we have the kind of Internet we want in 2009—was misguided. In general, it works pretty well to wait until new technologies emerge and then debate whether to regulate them after the fact, rather than trying to regulate preemptively to shape the kinds of technologies that are developed."
- Spirits of The Times - Absinthe Is Back, but Is It Good? - Review - NYTimes.com - Review of 20 absinthes.
- TC-Oh No « GartenBlog - "As an analyst, I am often asked what platform has the lowest TCO. My answer is always the same, “a yellow pad and a pencil.” "
- Oracle VM Blog: Basics of Oracle VM (Oracle's Virtualization Blog) - Some technical details on Oracle VM.
Posted by Gordon Haff at 9:54 AM
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
- Why Sync Is So Difficult - When you sell a sync product, you sell magic... But once it’s implemented, there’s no magic anymore, and the engineer is left to deal with asynchrony, slow bandwidth, third-party applications, and file systems that have different semantics.
- Survey: Consumers prefer DVDs to downloads | Digital Media - CNET News - But a lot of people still prefer the physical stuff.
- Why Physical Media Is Archaic « Web Strategy by Jeremiah Owyang | Social Media, Web Marketing - I see anecdotal examples here and there that more people are willing to rent and/or own digital-only than in the past.
- Why Circuit City Failed, and Why B&H Thrives | Printer-friendly version - I do like B&H (and Adorama) but I'm not sure to what degree you can apply lessons from cream-of-the-crop NY photo store to national electronics retailer. I also tend to think that people who aren't schooled in the, um, social graces of New York City might not find B&H etc. to be such an appealing environment.
- Technology Review: Blogs: Jason Pontin's blog: How to Save Media - "The comparative advantage of mainstream media is not the ownership of presses, but the collaboration of professionals. The creation of good journalism is a tremendously laborious process, requiring an infrastructure more expensive than any press."
- Gawker - David Simon: Dead-Wrong Dinosaur - David Simon - No newspapers often don't do a great job and bloggers/etc. do cover local nitty-gritty news that they're interested in. But I see precious little evidence that ad hoc coverage is anything but very spotty.
- Forget Kindle DX. How about the ZuneBook? | Tech Broiler | ZDNet.com - A full-blown OS and LCD display present certain issues. But if there's a "tweener" device (between smartphone and ultraportable notebook) that might find a real ecological niche, it could well be a tablet of some sort.
- Scott Rosenberg’s Wordyard » Blog Archive » Fifteen years of epochal pronouncements - I'm still trying to figure out where in the middle I sit on all this.
Posted by Gordon Haff at 1:37 PM