Friday, September 30, 2011

Humor Can Soothe Dementia Patients

Humor can reduce agitated behavior in patients with dementia (dementia) by 20 percent. Nervous behaviors such as wandering, screaming and repetitive behavior. Unfortunately nurses dementia patients often forget the influence of this humor to therapy patients.

Many studies have shown positive effects for healthy laugh. Scientific evidence has shown laughter can lower blood pressure and increase tolerance to pain.

Research conducted by researchers from New South Wales in Australia shows that humor can reduce agitated behavior in dementia patients as much as 20 percent.

A total of 400 residents of nursing homes that most of the experience of dementia participated in this study. The researchers looked at the effects of a given humor humor therapist named Jean-Paul Bell on 200 people live in nursing homes.

The humor is sometimes the therapist acts as a clown doctor at a children's hospital. But for this time trial, he was dressed like a normal elevator workers.

Mr. Bell smiling, chatting with an imaginary figure using a set of old phone and waving a magic wand as he asked the residents about what they want.

In some nursing homes, therapists humor sometimes act as clowns in an old joke, story, music and magic to help stimulate the memory and cognitive function.

For example, an old clown dementia patients ask someone to tell or give some advice on life. Clowns can also act stupid or deliberately giving wrong instructions to the nursing home residents to tell the clowns what he should do.

"There is evidence to suggest that people with dementia can still understand the humor and the same amount as normal people, but they find funny is different," said researcher Dr Lee-Fay Low of the University of New South Wales as quoted by the Huffington Post, Thursday (22 / 9 / 2011).

According to him, some nursing homes are very focused on tasks such as bathing, feeding, and cleaning. And sometimes forgot the emotional needs of their inhabitants.

In an article published in the journal BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine last year, a researcher from Japan to investigate why laughter can be used as an alternative therapy for patients with dementia.

He wrote that laughter is considered beneficial to human health for a long time. Some benefits include increased terawa immune response, hormone function and tolerance to pain.

However, researchers noted that humor must be managed and presented properly, because patients with dementia can become upset if the joke was deemed offensive.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Apple to Announce New iPhone

Finally, it’s here.

After months of speculation about timing, shape and sizes, Apple sent out media invites Tuesday for a special event on Apple’s campus next week.
The invitation was sparse, with the headline simply saying: “Let’s talk iPhone.”
The event is Oct. 4 and will be at Apple’s campus in Cupertino, Calif. The invitation says it will begin with a “breakfast and coffee bar at 9 a.m.,” followed by an “executive presentation at 10 a.m.”
According to sources and rumors sprinkled all over the Web, the event will be held to announce the next generation iPhone 5.
The next generation iPhone is expected to have completely revamped hardware. The camera, processor and other internal organs will all receive drastic upgrades, according to reports. The design of the phone will be different too. Last month, images of an alleged iPhone 5 case appeared online, although only for a short period.
Some reports say Apple will release two phones during next week’s conference. An iPhone 5 and a less expensive model, possibly called the iPhone 4GS.
The iPhone has become the primary cash cow for Apple. The company sold 16 million of the phones during the first quarter.

Really Frequent Drinking Can Damage Kidneys Soda?

Really Frequent Drinking Can Damage Kidneys Soda?
Become soda craze many people that it tastes good and refreshing. But did you know that drinking soda craze can damage the kidneys?

If the kidneys are functioning properly, about 200 liters of blood is filtered through these organs and the kidneys each day will spend about 2 liters of urine. Functioning kidneys produce hormones that control the production of new red blood cells and helps to regulate blood pressure.

Small filters in the kidneys called nephrons separates waste products from the blood and restore electrolytes such as phosphorus, sodium and potassium back into the blood stream in the correct amount.

If you drink too much soda can cause kidney failure. In fact, if you already have a problem with the kidneys, chemicals and minerals in the soda can give extra pressure on the kidneys are already damaged and accelerate kidney problems, according to Columbia University.

Drink two bottles of soda or more per day may increase the risk of chronic kidney disease, as reported by Mayoclinic, Saturday (17/09/2011). The habit of drinking soda will expose nephrons in the kidney because of pressure from caffeine, sodium and other minerals.

Increased blood pressure from too much caffeine can also damage the capillaries in the kidney nephron. In addition, too much phosphorus or potassium will make kidney damage and cause other serious problems including cardiac arrhythmia.

Not only that, the excess calcium can accelerate the discharge of urine that form kidney stones in your urinary system. Oxalate content of the soda also promote the formation of calcium oxalate, a common component of kidney stones.

Just drink less soda will not necessarily prevent kidney stones. Staying well hydrated can remove waste from the body prior to forming kidney stone deposits. Drink plenty of water regularly throughout the day, at least six to eight glasses.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Facebook iPad App Still Snagged in Negotiations

screenshot via TechCrunch Images of the Facebook iPad application were leaked to TechCrunch earlier this year.
It was almost ready to make its long-awaited debut.
In June, I reported that the Facebook iPad application had been in the works for almost a year and was essentially complete. According to people briefed on Facebook’s plans at the time, the app was scheduled to be available in the Apple iTunes store a couple of weeks later.
It never appeared. No big announcement. No shiny new iPad application. Just silence.
The app, it turns out, had become the hostage of a tense negotiation between Facebook and Apple executives for a deal to further integrate Facebook into the next version of Apple’s operating system, iOS 5.
On Monday, news of the iPad app surfaced online again. MG Siegler, of the blog TechCrunch, discovered a blog post by Jeff Verkoeyen, a former Facebook employee who said he worked on Facebook’s iPad application. (His site may be down or overloaded.) He said he had quit the company after the iPad app had been completed and placed on shelves for several months.
“It is now nearly five months since the app was feature complete and I haven’t seen it released,” Mr. Verkoeyen wrote on his blog. “Needless to say this was a frustrating experience for me. The experience of working on this app was a large contribution to the reasons why I left Facebook.”
A Facebook spokeswoman declined to comment about the existence of the application and said, “We have nothing to announce now and cannot comment on future Facebook products.” Apple did not respond to a request for comment.
Although Apple and Facebook have successfully worked closely together on a number of products, including the Facebook iPhone application, the two companies have also had a strained relationship.
This connection began to sour last year when Apple technologymoved into social networking with the iTunes music network Ping. At the time, Facebook was curiously missing from the product. Steven P. Jobs, Apple’s chief executive, said that Apple had been in discussions with Facebook to integrate the social networks, but in the end, Mr. Jobs reportedly said Facebook’s terms were “onerous.â€�
Apple chose to use some open programming tools that Facebook made available to developers and allowed Ping users to find their Facebook friends on the service. That was short lived because Facebook pulled the plug on Apple.
Apple fired back at Facebook this year when it announced iOS 5, which was completely integrated with Twitter, a Facebook competitor. Facebook was not even mentioned in the announcement.
More news and confirmation of the iPad application’s existence will surely put a fire underneath both Apple and Facebook. But when you have two of the largest companies in technology battling for control and integration of their respective networks, there’s definitely going to be some bloodshed along the way.
Mashable is reporting that the iPad app will be introduced when Apple announces its new iPhone. Apple and Facebook had no comment.

Google's Biggest Threat Is Google

Google faces antitrust inquiries and competition from all corners. But its biggest threat is Google itself, Larry Page, its chief executive and co-founder, said Tuesday.

There are basically no companies that have good slow decisions, Mr. Page said in a rare public appearance at Google™s Zeitgeist conference in Paradise Valley, Ariz. There are only companies that have good fast decisions. As companies get bigger, they slow down decision making, and that's a big problem.

It's a problem he has tried to address since he took over as chief executive from Eric E. Schmidt in April.

He's in there doing that, forcing the choice and forcing the resolution, Mr. Schmidt, now Google's chairman, said at the conference.

Mr. Page is also working on integrating all of Google's products and improving their user interfaces, he said.

Google should stand for a beauty, technological purity of innovation and things that are important to people, he said. It should also be a trusted brand, he said.

It's very important to us that people know we're acting in their interest and we’re trustworthy, both as stewards of information access and for their own personal data, he said.

Mr. Page, who typically avoids public appearances, spoke to the audience of Google customers. He seemed uncomfortable at first in jeans and a sweatshirt, reading from notes on paper.

He repeatedly said how “super excited” he was about Google products like Google+, Chrome, Android and YouTube. He grew more comfortable when Mr. Schmidt, who is well versed in speaking publicly, joined him, because he knows how to really answer the hard questions, Mr. Page said.

The two seemed to have an easy relationship in which they can tease each other.

Asked about Google biggest challenges, Mr. Page shouted, Google.

Mr. Schmidt said more diplomatically, The problems at a company at Google's scale are always internal at some level.

Yeah, that's why I said Google, Mr. Page said, laughing.

The two executives addressed driverless cars, which Google has been working on and which Mr. Page said had been an interest of his since graduate school.

Our computers drive your car better than you do when you're drunk, Mr. Schmidt said.

Or when you're 16 or when you're old, Mr. Page said. You'll get a software update and your car will be safe, which is great.

Mr. Page also spoke about the patent wars, which have been continuing in Silicon Valley as tech companies sue one another. Google, which has never sued over patents, said it bought Motorola Mobility in part to protect itself with its patents.

There’s an element in technology and software of innovating and moving quickly and trying to do new stuff rather than using the legal system to prevent people from doing things, Mr. Page said.

Mr. Page said that technology in general and particularly social networking will look entirely different in five years.

Seven years ago there were no social networking tools and five years from now it's going to be completely different again, he said. What we're trying to do is make sure we're driving the next five years, and that's our job.

Seamless Acquires Menupages in Race for Restaurants

As they compete to appeal to their couch-bound clientele, online food ordering services have been in a race to add restaurants to their databases as quickly as possible. Seamless, one of the leaders in the market, has added a big pile all at once by acquiring Menupages for an undisclosed amount, in a deal it is announcing Monday. (GrubHub is its main rival.)
Seamless currently offers a single service: the ability to order food through a Web site or a mobile app. By acquiring Menupages, the company hopes to bring in customers who are looking for general restaurant information, rather than just those who are hoping to start eating within 45 minutes. Menupages has a database of over 35,000 menus, and a system for transcribing and updating this information, according to Jonathan Zabusky, the chief executive officer of Seamless.
Since 2008, Menupages has been operated by New York Media, which publishes New York Magazine. The company maintained Menupages as a separate brand, rather than integrating its popular Web site and mobile application into New York Magazine’s own restaurant coverage. Seamless also plans to keep Menupages as a separate brand, but will integrate its core business into Menupages’ products.

Mr. Zabusky said that a major factor driving the acquisition was Menupage’s rich pool of customer data. Both Seamless and Menupages have years’ worth of information about their customers’ behavior, including ratings and reviews of restaurants and other types of data highly valued by advertisers. Mr. Zabusky said that such information would also be useful to restaurants who are looking to make money from their Web site, by giving them a better sense of how people interact with them online.
“There’s a lot of money going to these sites and there’s not a great way to monetize them,” he said.
Seamless said it planned to add Menupage’s two dozen odd employees to its staff, which numbers about 220. Seamless hopes to leverage Menupages’ existing relationships with restaurants into more agreements to provide online ordering.
The deal is a shot across the bow of Seamless’ main rival, GrubHub. That company also made news last week when it announced that it had raised $50 million in venture funding and acquired Dotmenu, another online food delivery network.
Both companies say they are seeing rapidly increasing customer use, particularly through their mobile apps. With the acquisition of Menupages, Seamless will operate in over 50 cities. It plans to debut an iPad app later this year and is in the process of moving into new headquarters to house its rapidly expanding staff. It estimates that it will handle $400 million in food orders this year.
“This is our industry’s time right now,” said Mr. Zabusky.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Why Need Systems Security on Mobile Phones?

The penetration of mobile users who sped by quickly, making the security system in this gadget is absolutely necessary. A number of antivirus vendors had already started to pay attention to this.

In the arena of discussion 'How Secure Is Your Android Phone' that was held in Aldevco Octagon House on Wednesday (21/09/2011) night, Jason Mok, Consumer Sales Manager of Symantec explained several reasons why cell phones have extra security.

"We have users that use mobile phones for browsing and access to Facebook's more than that using a computer," Jason said to the participants who attended the discussion.

Jason also claims that the amount of malware that attack mobile phones continues to increase, especially for mobile phones based on Android that the number of users continues to increase rapidly.

"That's why Norton Mobile Security has released several security features such as antiphising, antitheft and others," added Jason.

In addition to Jason, the discussion How Secure Is Your Android Phone? Lucky is also enlivened by Sebastian of community en-Android, and Effendy Ibrahim, Internet Safety Advocate & Director, Asia, Consumer Business, Symantec.

Want to know more about the threat of what was in front of the user's Android? Listen to the discussion How Secure Is Your Android Phone

Twitter can now post photos via SMS

Twitter seems to attempt to meet the needs of users who have not used a smartphone. Microblogging site that allows posting of photos now by sending short messages (SMS).

Previously, Twitter is already allowing updates via SMS. Users also can receive Twitter updates via SMS without having to open a Twitter account. However, this facility has not been able to send pictures without the aid of mobile Twitter application.

Nevertheless, the interest of users is large enough. Since Twitter supports updates via SMS to the user, as reported by Reuters on Thursday (09/22/2011), about 4 billion SMS sent and received each month Twitter.

Innovation also continues to accommodate the photo posting services via SMS. It's just that this facility is only available for 6 countries by cooperating with nine different operators. In the United States, users of AT & T, Cellular South and Verizon can take advantage of this service.

Twitter users in UK can rely on O2 and Orange. For users in Canada using a Rogers operator, Italy with Vodafone, Bahrain with the operator and the operator VIVA TIM to users in Brazil.

To send the photo to Twitter via SMS, the user just simply type in tweet text messages, attach photos like other text and sends the text to Twitter shor code corresponding to their country of origin.

Additionally, Twitter was now presenting an SMS code to simplify the user get the information useful. For example, if a user sends an SMS containing 'Suggest', they will receive a row of a list of Twitter users are eligible to difollow.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Google Doodle Honors Jim Henson and Friendly Monsters

Saturday marks what would have been the 75th birthday of Jim Henson, the puppet pioneer and beloved conductor of many a fuzzy childhood friend, from Big Bird to the Cookie Monster. In his honor, today’s Google Doodle, which represents the company logo on the search engine’s home page, is an interactive puppet show, designed by Google and the Jim Henson Company.
Here’s a video from those two companies describing their collaboration on the doodle, as well as the prolific puppeteer’s creative process.

Mr. Henson was one of the driving creative forces behind two of television’s most iconic children’s programs. The first, “Sesame Street,” plodded into living rooms in 1969 with characters like Count von Count and Oscar the Grouch in tow. Then, in 1976, “The Muppet Show” premiered, starring Miss Piggy and the great, green Kermit the frog.
Mr. Henson, who also had a hand in several films, died in 1990 at the age of 53, but his legacy — and fan base– persists. The Museum of the Moving Image is featuring an exhibition celebrating his work until mid-January, and the latest of many Muppet movies, this one starring Amy Adams, is scheduled to open later this year. Sesame Street is still on the air.
On the Google Doodle, you can use a mouse and keyboard to make the six characters open their mouths, glance furtively around, and even get in a bit of trouble. The little red guy on the end can be prodded into devouring his neighbor, the thin green fellow who looks like a pillar wearing a sock. But fear not! This show, too, is safe for children: Once the confrontation is over, the tall green puppet will poke his head up from the bottom of the screen and climb back into position, holding down the Google’s “L.”
If you have a little extra time, you can also make the puppets sing. Here’s a video posted on YouTube by a fan, in which the Google Doodle sings “Boom Boom Pow” by the Black Eyed Peas.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Yahoo Review Will Take Months

Yahoo’s co-founders and its chairman have acknowledged that it would take “months, not weeksâ€� to complete a strategic review of company’s business, implying that any decision about reviving or selling the Web portal could take some time.
The message, from the co-founders Jerry Yang and David Filo, along with Roy Bostock, Yahoo’s chairman, came in an e-mail to employees on Friday that was intended to dispel a myriad of reports in the media about Yahoo’s future. Yahoo has been buffeted in recent weeks by technologythe firing of its chief executive, Carol A. Bartz, after a rocky two and a half year tenure during which she failed to turn around the struggling company.
“While we will move with a sense of urgency, this process will take time,� the memo said.
“Months, not weeks. We know that’s a lot of potential distraction, but we believe it will be worth the wait.�
The memo also made a vague reference about Yahoo’s investment bank, Allen & Company, “fielding inquiries from multiple parties that have already expressed interest in a number of potential options.� Presumably, that includes talking to private equity companies like Silver Lake Partners and other companies like Microsoft about potentially selling Yahoo in parts or in its entirety.
“There will be plenty of rumors and speculation as different parties try to advance their agendas in the media â€" but it is important that we not be distracted by the rumors and speculation,â€� the memo said.

Meg Whitman’s Other Problem: The Economy

Meg Whitman said weaknesses in the sales of printer cartridges is a concern.
Mike Nelson/European Pressphoto AgencyMeg Whitman said weaknesses in the sales of printer cartridges is a concern.
As much as any damage caused by Léo Apotheker’s inability to successfully communicate or execute his decisions during his 11-month tenure atop Hewlett-Packard, new chief executive Meg Whitman is concerned about what has happened to H.P.’s competitive environment.
“The pace of change has accelerated� around H.P., Ms. Whitman said in an interview Thursday evening. “We have to anticipate, and anticipate and anticipate the trends.� These include the shift from PCs to tablets like the Apple iPad and the rise of low-cost corporate computing through Internet-based rentals of computing power like Amazon Web Services, she said.
“We have to look at our whole go-to-market approach,� she said, referring to the way products are marketed. Whatever she chooses to do, she indicated it will be led by hardware sales and not Mr. Apotheker’s software-led philosophy.
During a call with Wall Street analysts, Ms. Whitman talked about the need for H.P. to temporarily slow its investments and share repurchases, to rebuild the company’s damaged balance sheet.
She may need the money for more than that however. In a later conversation with The New York Times, the newly reminted chief executive identified weaknesses in the sales of its usually lucrative printer cartridges. “Printing is a 50 percent consumer business,� she said. “The consumer is pulling back, mostly in Europe, but to be honest here too.�
While economic weakness in the United States isn’t news, H.P. identified weakness in Europe in the analysts’ call. While this will affect revenue in the quarter, according to the company’s chief financial officer, the company expects to deliver its projected earnings per share this quarter. The outlook from there is uncertain, indicating H.P. will deliver the earnings through cuts, more than a revival of demand elsewhere.
Where will those come from? “I’ve got 43 days until the end of the quarter,� she said. “I’ve got to do some homework.�

A World's Smallest Camera, Measuring 1 Inch

A world's smallest camera successfully created. Despite its size no bigger than a fingertip, but he could operate like a normal-sized camera.

This camera only has a size of 1 inch and weighs 28 grams. But do not underestimate the size because he can take a picture of 2 megapixels and can record video.

Manufacturing pembesutnya the Hammacher Schlememr membanderol mini gadget is priced at USD 99.95. Fred Berns, general manager of the factory, based in New York, said, "This is a remarkable tool and we hope he can popular on the market".

The resulting image from the camera shots are JPEG format with a resolution of 1600 x 1200. Quoted from dailymail Friday (23/09/2011), he even equipped with autofocus.

Just as the cameras 'normal', it can be connected to a computer via a USB cable. Given the super small size, it is equipped with a hook that is not easy missing and easy operation.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Yahoo Wants People to Share

Yahoo is making its news more social.

A new service introduced on Thursday will let users see and share which Yahoo news articles they and their Facebook friends have read.

By showing what are essentially recommendations, Yahoo is hoping that people will click on more articles. Friends are more likely to have common interests and would therefore have similar reading tastes, the theory goes.

“You’ll be able to discover content through the lens of your friends,” said Blake Irving, who leads Yahoo’s products.

The new service was timed to Facebook’s F8 conference in San Francisco on Thursday, where Facebook unveiled its latest enhancements.

Yahoo’s new service comes as the company struggles to revive its business, despite having more than 600 million users globally. Advertising revenue is stagnant and new products have been few and far between over the past year.

Earlier this month, Yahoo’s board technology/carol-bartz-yahoos-chief-executive-is-fired.html">fired Carol A. Bartz, the company’s chief executive, after a lackluster two and a half year tenure. A number of suitors interested in buying some or part of Yahoo are circling.

Yahoo news is one of the company’s crown jewels with more than 80 million unique monthly users, making it the top news site in terms of traffic. Increasingly, however, people are getting their news by sharing links to individual articles through Facebook or Twitter rather than going directly to news sites.
Previously, to share articles with friends, Yahoo users had to cut and paste links in e-mail.

To sign up for the new service, users must have a Facebook account. Nearly 85 percent of Yahoo users have one, according to Yahoo.

At the top of Yahoo news pages, users will see images of their Facebook friends who are also signed up. Clicking on the images brings up a list of Yahoo news articles that those people have read. Individual articles will be stamped with names of friends who have read them, as in “Steve Smith and two others have read this.” Automatic updates on Facebook will also tip off friends to what people are reading.

Yahoo executives responded to questions about privacy by emphasizing that users can control what to share, if anything. The service is opt-in, meaning users choose to join, and they can delete articles that would otherwise be shared in their reading list.

Warby Parker Raises Money to Sell Prescription Glasses Online

technology/22bits-glasses/22bits-glasses-blog480.jpg" alt="" width="480" height="261" />Noel Camardo

Warby Parker has surprised skeptics by building a business that sells stylish prescription eyeglasses online.

Now it has raised $12 million in venture capital, bringing its total to $13.5 million, to help it expand and manage the demand for the glasses. The money came from Tiger Global, the Menlo Talent Fund and existing investors including Lerer Ventures, Thrive Capital and First Round Capital.

The start-up, which is based in New York and opened last year, technology/17glasses.html">taps into two trends in e-commerce. It eliminates the middleman in order to sell glasses for $95, much less than the typical retail price of several hundred dollars, and offers attentive customer service. Anyone can return glasses at no charge, for instance.

But it has faced brutal inventory problems. The glasses sold out early on, and loaner pairs — glasses without prescription lenses that the company will send free to customers who want to try them on — are often back-ordered.

Warby Parker will use the new capital in part to manage those issues, said Neil Blumenthal, a co-founder. The start-up has been working with a professor and intern from Stanford on an inventory model and is hiring supply-chain experts, he said.

“There continues to be a failure of imagination on how quickly this brand can grow,” Mr. Blumenthal said. “Now we take our projections and double them and order based on that.”

The company also offers glasses to try on in stores it has partnered with in various cities, and will expand that program as part of its new marketing efforts. During Fashion Week, for instance, 30 Warby Parker models wearing the glasses filed quietly into the New York Public Library and sat at tables. At once, they held up blue books with the name of the type of glasses they were wearing as fashion editors watched.

And Warby Parker will soon introduce prescription sunglasses for $150.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Tech Talk Podcast: Browsing by Texting

Smartphones and tablets have changed the way people get information from the Web, but not everyone has, wants or can afford an expensive mobile device. But what if you could use a basic feature available on almost every cellphone to get information from Web sites just by sending simple text messages? Stefan Gromoll, a former astrophysicist and now a co-founder of the company Dotgo, explains just how to do that with the technology he helped develop.

While hacktivist collectives like Anonymous seem to be getting the most attention, regular old black-hat hackers continue to quietly steal money and take over computers around the world. David Perry, the global director of education at Trend Micro, reveals details of the recent exploits of a Russian hacker with the handle Soldier who managed to steal $3 million over the past six months from the unsuspecting owners of infected computers. And perhaps as an even bigger threat, some of these infected PCs may have spread malicious software to the corporate networks of several large companies.

In his Tech Talk Term of the Week, Pedro Rafael Rosado explores the practice of “deep linking.”

This week’s technology headlines include Google Wallet making its limited debut in New York and San Francisco; Google Plus invites the world to join; Netflix splits off the DVD-rental side of its business into a new company called Qwikster; and gamers quickly solve an enzyme riddle that has stumped scientists for years.

For those who never have time to read long Web articles right away, the Tip of the Week explains how to use the new Reading List feature built into Apple’s Safari browser to save those stories for later.

To find out more about the show and links to topics that were discussed, go to the technology/techtalk.html">Tech Talk page.

You can download the show by subscribing from the New York Times podcast page or directly from iTunes.

For help finding specific segments of the Bits: Tech Talk podcast, use these time codes:

News â€" 35:41 â€" 23:14
Tech Term â€" 15:05
David Perry â€"12:09
Tip of the Week â€" 4:56

Google Says It Plays Fair

In written testimony to a Senate antitrust panel where he will testify Wednesday afternoon, Eric Schmidt, Google’s chairman, describes the search giant as a company facing fierce competition on many fronts, a relentless innovator in a dynamic industry and a creation of the open Internet so consumers can easily switch to competing services.

Google generates wealth for itself, he writes, but even more in total for small businesses across America. And he portrays the Federal Trade Commission’s antitrust investigation of Google, begun earlier this year, as largely the result of complaints by disgruntled competitors.

Google is cooperating with the wide-ranging F.T.C. inquiry, Mr. Schmidt writes, and adds “we hope it will be conducted in a focused and fair manner so that we can continue creating jobs and building products that delight our users.”

Mr. Schmidt’s written testimony, submitted on Tuesday, will be introduced before the Senate Judiciary’s antitrust subcommittee, where he and some Google rivals will testify in person on Wednesday afternoon.

The written testimony by Mr. Schmidt makes the case that Google has been making for months as its business practices have come under increasing scrutiny from antitrust regulators in the United States, Europe and Korea. But the Google chairman lays out the company’s defense of its actions and motivations in a document that is pointed and succinct, yet comprehensive.

Antitrust regulators are investigating complaints that Google favors its own commerce services and offerings in its search results, among other allegations.

Google’s success, Mr. Schmidt writes, is a byproduct of its corporate ethos of putting consumer interests first. “Keeping up requires constant investment and innovation,” he writes, “and if Google fails in this effort users can and will switch. The cost of going elsewhere is zero, and users can and do use other sources to find the information they want.”

Mr. Schmidt asserts that Google’s search and advertising marketplace “helped generate $64 billion in economic activity for hundreds of thousands of small businesses throughout the United States.”

In his testimony, Mr. Schmidt pointed to a long list of competitors including Microsoft’s Bing search engine, travel sites like Expedia and Travelocity, restaurant review and recommendations sites like Yelp, shopping sites like Amazon and eBay, and social networks like Facebook. “Consumers,” he writes, “have a truly vast array of options â€" some search and some note â€" from which to access information.”

Turning to the antitrust investigations, Mr. Schmidt writes, “most of these complaints come from Web sites that don’t like where their site ranks on Google’s search results page or argue that in providing better answers like maps, shopping, or local results, we are hurting individual sites.”

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

One in Three Texters Would Rather Text Than Talk

My 3-year-old told my husband the other day to send me a text message. She intuitively understood that I prefer to see his words on my screen than hear his voice. Texts are discreet. Texts are pithy.

A sampling of marital chatter: “Still at playground;” “Detergent finished;” and regrettably, “Working much longer?”

Texts avoid conflict. He could have picked up the phone and yelled: “Maybe if you weren’t working all the time you could remember to buy some laundry detergent.”

Apparently I am not alone. Nearly three out of four Americans send text messages on the phone and among those who do, 31 percent prefer texting to talking, according to a study released Monday by the Pew Research Center.

Those numbers are even more pronounced for younger people. Cellphone owners between the ages of 18 and 24 send or receive an average of 109.5 messages daily. The rest of us on average exchange 41.5 messages daily, Pew found.

The poor text more often than the rich. According to the survey, conducted on the phone with 2,277 adults, those with incomes of under $30,000 exchanged nearly 57 messages on average each day, while those earning over $75,000 exchanged 32 messages on average.

A separate Pew Center study earlier this summer documented how vital our cellphones had become. Among those who owned cellphones, 42 percent said they used their device to stave off boredom and 13 percent pretended to be occupied with their phones to stave off unwanted attention from others.

And what’s happened to voice? It turns out that 53 percent of Americans still prefer to talk to one another on their phones.

Maybe I should call my husband today and say hello. He’ll be so surprised he’ll go out and buy the detergent himself.

GrubHub Raises Another $50 Million, Acquires Dotmenu

GrubHub, a service that allows users to order takeout or delivery food from their computers or through mobile applications, has raised $50 million in venture capital. The company, which raised a previous round of $20 million six months ago, will also announce Tuesday that it has acquired Dotmenu, another online food delivery network.

technology/20bits-grubhub/20bits-grubhub-articleInline.jpg" alt="GrubHub says it has handled $200 million in delivery and pickup orders since 2004." width="190" height="209" />Todd Heisler/The New York TimesGrubHub says it has handled $200 million in delivery and pickup orders since 2004.

GrubHub has established itself as one of two leaders in the online food delivery market. Since 2004, it has handled over $200 million in delivery and pickup orders, according to the company. The service is free for users; restaurants pay a commission to GrubHub, which says it is already profitable. Its Web site had 173,000 unique visitors in June according to Comscore, significantly more than its closest competitor, Seamless.

Both sites say they are seeing an increasing proportion of their business coming through smartphone apps. GrubHub expects to be almost entirely a mobile service within five years.

GrubHub and Seamless have been in a race to add more restaurants to their services, with each claiming an advantage. In New York City, for example, GrubHub claims relationships with over 5,400 restaurants, significantly more than Seamless. But fewer than half of those restaurants allow online ordering and instead show only a scanned version of the menu and a phone number.

GrubHub sees its acquisition of Dotmenu, which runs the sites Campusfood and Allmenus, primarily as way to increase its stable of restaurants. With Dotmenu’s business folded into GrubHub, the combined company will operate in 50 major cities, as well as many college towns. GrubHub currently operates in 19 markets. The company plans to allow online ordering through Dotmenu’s restaurants, but it is unclear how soon. Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

The round of venture funding was led by Lightspeed Ventures with Mesirow Financial, Benchmark Capital, Greenspring Associates and DAG Ventures participating.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Without Jobs, Apple Shares Hit All-Time High

Timothy D. CookChris Hondros/Getty Images Timothy D. Cook took over Apple a month ago.

At the end of regular trading Monday, Apple shares closed at $411.63, up 2.78 percent, with a new record-high market valuation of $381.62 billion. It is now clearly the most valuable company on the stock market, displacing Exxon Mobil, with a market capitalization of $358.34 billion.

Mind you, Apple’s stock growth comes just one month after Steven P. Jobs, the Apple co-founder and former chief executive, resigned from the company  because of health problems. Timothy D. Cook, the company’s chief operating officer, took over the chief’s position.

The stock performance on Monday suggests that investors have quelled their fears that Apple could not continue to innovate without Mr. Jobs at the helm. Apple is expected to introduce the iPhone 5 in the coming weeks.

It was just three months ago that Apple was $50 billion away from ousting Exxon Mobil, the energy company, as the stock market’s most valuable company.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

How to Create Automated Changed Blog Description

Okay, we see immediately wrote tutorial step by step.
1. Log in to your blogspot account.
2. Click Design> Edit Html> Check the expand widget templates.
3. Find the code below, to facilitate use ctrl + f then type in "descriptionwrapper" without the quotes.

<div class='descriptionwrapper'>
<p class='description'><span><data:description/></span></p>

4. Then replace the code below:

<div class='descriptionwrapper'>
<b:if cond='data:blog.pageType != &quot;item&quot;'><p class='description'><span><data:description/></span></p>
<p class='description'><span><b:if cond='data:blog.pageType == &quot;item&quot;'>
<strong><font style='text-transform: uppercase;'><u><i><data:blog.pageName/></i></u></font></strong>

5. If so, click save.

Congratulations! Now your blog is installed automatically according to a description of the blog title. Hopefully I create an automatic change the blog description, useful.
Regards success always.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Huawei Launches Commercial Network LTE TDD / FDD

Competition among vendors and communications technology increasingly fierce. Huawei presents the latest episode of breakthrough with the launch of a commercial telecommunications network convergence LTE TDD / FDD claimed first in the world.

By utilizing innovative solutions SingleRAN LTE, the LTE TDD / FDD Huawei touted to increase mobile Internet access with download speeds of 134Mb / s and upload 124.8Mb / s.

"As a leader of information and communications technology ecosystem continues to grow, the world's telecom operators are always looking for new ways to have the network they can be more flexible, efficient and effective in providing a modern mobile data services to its customers," said Li Zhi Wen, CEO of Huawei Indonesia.

"This is part of Huawei's commitment to provide the best network infrastructure and technologies for telecom operators in the world as jointly promote the development of mobile telecommunications," added Li, in his statement on Saturday (09/17/2011).

LTE network rollout TDD / FDD is said to be a new milestone in the development of technology of Huawei. In May 2011, companies from China, this success brings the network's first commercial LTE TDD in the world who won the award 'Wireless Network Infrastructure Innovation' awards at the Global Telecommunications Business (GTB) in 2011.

Commercial LTE network rollout TDD / FDD Huawei this time working with Aero2, broadband mobile operator in Poland.

In the second quarter of 2011, Huawei itself has presented 130 commercial networks SingleRAN ready to be developed into LTE network, with 40 telecom operators have announced their readiness to bring LTE services.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Blogger Releases iPhone Application

Blogger finally released an application for an operating system IOS. This is the first official application issued by the blog service.

This application is of course welcomed by the bloggers because with this application they are permitted to publish blog posts directly from their mobile phone.

The services provided by this application is not a full service, in which the user can not edit the template or HTML, as well as manage the comments through the application. Only the main activities are displayed by this application which store (save), edit (edit) and publish posts, including uploading photos and adding location information.

This application will be available to users IOS 3.2 and above. Display face said to resemble Blogger for Android applications.

In the arena of blogging service, Blogger was overshadowed by the middle of other services like WordPress, Tumblr and other competitors. That is why Google, as the owner of Blogger has made some effort to make Blogger relevant again.

Sony Changes Gaming Policy to Thwart Future Lawsuits

technology/bits-sonytos/bits-sonytos-blog480-v2.jpg" alt="Sony PlayStation Network terms of service agreement" />screenshot via Sony Section 15 of the Sony PlayStation Network forbids class-action lawsuits by users.

Sony quietly updated its PlayStation Network terms of service agreement on Thursday, adding a new section that will prevent users from joining future class-action lawsuits against the company.

The update, which has been titled “Section 15,” was buried in the company’s 10,869-word agreement and was not publicly announced by Sony.

The new section requires users to agree that they will not join any class-action suits against Sony in the future, and that if they do file a suit against the company, it will be done only on an individual basis. People who do not want to agree to the new section must send Sony a written letter in the next 30 days requesting not to be included in the agreement.

When asked why the company had added the new legal rule to the site and about its fairness, a Sony spokesman responded that the updated language was “designed to benefit both the consumer and the company by ensuring that there is adequate time and procedures to resolve disputes.”

Users on game forums and gaming blogs were not impressed by the company’s decision to add the new class-action section, with many saying that they felt it benefited the company more than customers.

Sony said in the update that the new terms of service agreement will cover only new class-action suits filed against the company; anything filed before Aug. 20, 2011, will not covered. Earlier this year Sony was subject to a number of lawsuits, include some class-action filings, after the PlayStation Network was attacked by hackers.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

7 Facts Behind the Popularity Angry Birds

Angry Birds popular games that are crazy about a lot of people turned out to save the facts are interesting to observe.

The game itself is contributing a lot of money for pembesutnya, Rovio. Reported that the company has just received funding of USD 42 million.

Here are exposed some facts behind the success of Angry Birds by Mashable, Monday (09/12/2011):

1. Angry Birds has been downloaded 300 million times and so far there are three game series which the issuance of which is: Angry Birds, Birds Angry Angry Birds Seasons and the Rio.

2. Who would have thought that the players Angry Birds spend a total of 200 million minutes per day.

3. The most widely used tool to play, is the output of products based on Android, followed by Apple products.

4. Known to many gamers play the game 'bird' is via the iPhone (32%), iPod touch (33%), iPad (15%), Android (41%) and PC (25%).

5. Angry Birds play also reportedly makes a person feel very relaxed (23%) and make a better mood (58). In fact, not infrequently he makes the players become addicted (54%).

6. Another interesting fact is peeled from the Angry Birds is that there is no 'cure' for those who are addicted to play it.

7. As many as 12% of those who play 25 times Angry Birds prefer to remove it with the aim of preventing them play it again. Then the other 12% was minded to perform this action, but they ultimately chose not to do so and continue playing.

Plenty of Chatter About a New iPhone

technology/bits-iphone5/bits-iphone5-blog480.jpg" alt="iPhone 5 case" />photo via Cases for an unusual iPhone model appeared briefly on the Case-Mate Web site Thursday.

We’re just weeks away from the announcement of the new Apple iPhone 5, according to an Apple employee who asked not to be named because he was not allowed to speak publicly for the company.

As the excitement for Apple’s latest product revs up, chatter about the phone is starting to fly around the Web at warp speeds.

On Thursday the technology blog Boy Genius Report posted images of a new iPhone case from the site of a company called Case-Mate. The images were visible on the company’s site for a short period of time before they were replaced with a curiously cryptic page that says, “We’ll have your cases when you have your new iPhone.”

From descriptions I’ve heard of the new iPhone from Apple employees, the images seemed potentially authentic. But it seems that Case-Mate might be sneakily trying to take advantage of the excitement over the phone by posting and then unposting the images. These things rarely happen accidentally, especially when it comes to new Apple products.

Sneaky public relations tactics aside, an engineer familiar with the new iPhone said it would be fairly different from the iPhone 4 — including on the inside.

The new iPhone will come with an eight-megapixel camera, this person said, an upgrade from the five-megapixel camera in the iPhone 4. Earlier this year Howard Stringer, Sony’s chief executive, let it slip that the next iPhone would be updated with an eight-megapixel camera made by Sony. The Apple engineer also said the new phone would have a faster A5 dual-core processor.

Apple patents and recent new hires show that the company plans to add mobile payment functions to a future iPhone too â€" although it is unclear if that will happen this year.

As I’ve written in the past, two people with knowledge of the inner workings of Apple’s next-generation iPhones say either the iPhone 5 or iPhone 6 will include a new chip that is made by Qualcomm. This chip will include near-field communication technology, known as N.F.C., that can be used to make mobile payments by waving the phone over an N.F.C. reader, just like swiping a credit card at a terminal.

When Apple does introduce a mobile-payment-ready iPhone, the company will immediately have an advantage over its competitors, including Google and Microsoft, which are trying to push payments on mobile devices too. One person familiar with Apple’s plans said the phone’s payment information would be tied to customers’ iTunes accounts, which would make it simple for customers to set up a payment account on the iPhone by simply logging into iTunes.

According to Apple, 200 million people have stored their credit card information on iTunes.

Wow, Computers Can Live Without Electricity

In the arena of IDF 2011 Intel demonstrated how a computer can work without using electric current, but only utilizing ultra violet rays.

This demonstration shows the efficiency deliberately displayed by the processor power consumption in the future.

In a demonstration at the Moscone Center West, San Francisco on Tuesday (13/09/2011), the processors 'no name' is seen only gets power supply from a small battery storage of solar power.

"In addition to saving power, this processor also has a sleek design, so the impact on the shape of a thin notebook," said Paul Otellini, President and Chief Executive Officer, Intel Corporation.

Unfortunately, Intel did not want to disclose the specifications of the processor, codenamed good, speed, number of cores, or the total power consumption is needed. But clearly, this processor has been made ​​with 22nm fabrication.

PayPal Prepares to Expand Offline

PayPal is a step closer to moving offline.

The Internet payment service provided details on Wednesday on how it plans to handle payments in brick-and-mortar stores.

Offline payments are a big opportunity for PayPal, which is owned by eBay. But a number of companies are already making inroads, including Square, a start-up in San Francisco that is trying to replace cash registers and credit card terminals by letting consumer make purchases with their mobile phones.

PayPal’s plan is to make tools available to merchants so that they can use existing credit card terminals to accept payments through PayPal. Several payment methods will be possible, although they will ultimately depend on the kinds of terminals merchants have.

In one option, shoppers could enter their telephone number and four digit pin to make a payment from their PayPal account. In another, shoppers will be able to tap their phone on the terminal or a kiosk in the store aisle. Swiping a PayPal card is a third option.

A video demonstrating how the technology would work is here.

“We’re not here to force the technology on consumers or merchants,” said Sam Shrauger, vice president of global product and experience for PayPal. “We’re enabling consumes to pay in ways that are comfortable for them.

A test with 20 merchants is to begin before the end of a year. A more general roll-out is expected in the spring and summer next year.

PayPal, which has more than 100 million active user accounts, would presumably get a commission on each transaction, as it does with its online service. But Mr. Shrauger declined to disclose any details.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Smart computers Tell Pain

Has it occurred that the computer could tell the pain? If it could talk, perhaps this device will inform us. Did you know, it turns out this can indeed happen.

Researchers in the United States (U.S.) conducted a test. The result, computers can not talk when someone is sick because it has been specially trained to do so.

Reported by Reuters and was quoted on Wednesday (14/09/2011), scientists at Stanford University in California, the U.S. used the learning software for classifying the data generated from the results of brain scans and detects when a person feels sick.

"The question we are trying to answer is, can we use an imaging tool to objectively detect whether someone is in pain or not. The answer, I can," said Sean Mackey, who led the study.

Currently, most doctors rely on answers from the patients themselves to determine whether they are sick or not. And sometimes there are certain patients such as children, elderly or suffering from dementia can not tell you the pain. With this computer, which spared the pain of diganosa doctors can be known easily.

"We really hope this technology can display the result of better detection of disease so that it can provide better care for chronic diseases," said Mackey. 

Trendspotting at TechCrunch Disrupt

Entrepreneurial zeal is the inevitable theme at technology conferences like TechCrunch Disrupt, which ends its three-day run in San Francisco on Wednesday. Start-up founders and those who wanted to be overdosed on self-promotion, salesmanship and name-dropping while Silicon Valley celebrities pontificated on stage.

However, a few minithemes emerged during the event. Although not the kind that generally make headlines, they are nonetheless worth noting.


Books, at least those made with paper and ink, may be in decline. But they still retain a certain appeal with Silicon Valley’s elite.

Peter Thiel and Max Levchin, two of PayPal’s co-founders, mentioned on stage that they were writing a book together called “The Blueprint” that will detail how to get the United States back on the road to innovation (they think the country is in a funk in terms of big, new ideas).

Reid Hoffman, another member of the so-called PayPal mafia who spoke, is also co-authoring a book, “The Start-Up of You,” about the ins and outs of entrepreneurship.

Both books are expected to be published in 2012.

Eric Ries, author of “The Lean Startup,” also took to the stage and drew a big crowd wanting him to sign their copies, proving that e-books are not the only books read in the technology industry.


Another offline product, food, took center stage with a start-up, Farmigo, that promises delivery of organic food from local farms. Grow Planet, another start-up, pitched itself as helping people grow organic vegetables at home.

Food came up yet again when Vinod Khosla, a venture capitalist, mentioned a stealth investment of his, which he called “meat 2.0.” Although short on details, he mentioned that its vegan hamburgers would premiere soon and that they are nothing like the grilled cheese sandwiches from The Melt, a company funded by a rival venture capital firm, Sequoia Capital.

“I’ve tried vegan cheese and it’s awesome,” Mr. Khosla said.

Best Idea That Bombed With the Judges

Many of the companies showcased had an element of me-too, whether they involved users rating local businesses or some social networking element. Few could be called original.

Tonara was one of the exceptions, making sheet music available on an iPad. As musicians played, a bar moved along to show their place. The pages turned automatically.

Musicians brought on stage showed how the technology coped with multiple people playing different instruments simultaneously. Banging in the background did not seem to confuse the software.

The judges, however, dismissed sheet music as a small market and questioned whether the company could get rights to contemporary music. A show of hands by the musically inclined in the audience, however, showed that there was at least some potential market.

So much for upending centuries of tradition.

A Flash Sale Site for Modern Design

Do people want yet another flash sale site? The founders of think the answer is yes.

Fab sells design goods — widely defined as everything from handmade dining room tables to art to dishes — in limited-time sales.

Design junkies have plenty of other options, like Gilt Home and One Kings Lane. But Fab is aimed at a younger, more modern set of shoppers, say its founders, Jason Goldberg and Bradford Shellhammer.

Though it might seem like retailers would be getting flash sale fatigue because of all the options, Fab has become a new retail outlet and marketing vehicle for small designers that do not sell widely, the founders said. Unlike most flash sale sites, Fab does not sell retailers’ excess inventory, but rather sells new, in-season items at discount prices.

On Wednesday, Fab will introduce a new way for retailers to get their name out, when it posts its first online, month-long pop-up shop and introduces an iPad app. The pop-up shop will feature 76 designers from Fast Company’s design issue.

Fab has raised $10 million from investors including First Round Capital and Ashton Kutcher, who is a modernist design lover and whose wife, Demi Moore, is an avid online shopper, the founders said.

It eventually wants to sell many varieties of things with one common theme — high design. “The idea is when someone really embraces design, it influences everything in life, from their toothbrush to their pencil to their car to their hotel,” Mr. Shellhammer said.

One Kings Lane, perhaps the most well-known of the home design flash sale sites, is “too traditional, not modern enough,” said Mr. Shellhammer, who previously worked at modern meccas like Design Within Reach, Blu Dot and Dwell. Other designers, he said, “have resisted Gilt because they don’t want to be next to a brocade sofa or a fake Eames chair.”

The duo previously ran Fabulis, a social network for gay men, but it didn’t get much traction. “Everyone I know wishes Bradford would decorate their house,” Mr. Goldberg said, so they decided to sell design products instead.

Fab also has a section on the site called “inspiration,” where its users can upload design photos they like, such as an antique pink typewriter or a bright yellow car, though it is less robust than similar sites like Pinterest.

Like other sites, Fab wants to meld commerce and content, and about a fifth of its 600,000 subscribers open its e-mail messages each day, according to the company, which is high for the e-commerce industry.

“It’s almost like a design magazine is coming everyday,” Mr. Goldberg said. Mr. Shellhammer added, “Except you click on a button and you can buy it.”

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

At TechCrunch Conference, Talk of a Bubble

This year’s TechCrunch Disrupt conference in San Francisco sometimes felt more like an episode of “E! True Hollywood Story” than a high-priced technology gathering.

Although attendees discussed newly announced start-ups and venture funds, the conversations in the conference halls were often discussions of TechCrunch’s founder, Michael Arrington, who appeared on stage. AOL, the parent company of TechCrunch, had announced that Mr. Arrington was no longer employed by the company, though it was financing his venture fund.

The gossip quickly moved to a more fruitfully economic discussion: the talk of a technology bubble 2.0.

Curiously, the answer to the question of whether a new tech bubble existed was not determined by wealth or status, but rather age. People I spoke with who had experienced the first bubble in the late 1990s were convinced that we should be prepared for a large pop of biblical proportion.

“It feels like it’s 1999 all over again,” said Stuart MacDonald, chief marketing officer of FreshBooks, an online billing and bookkeeping site for small businesses. “So many of these people who didn’t see it all happen the last time think this is all fresh and new, but it’s really a lot of people saying the same things.” Mr. MacDonald said he was the chief marketing officer for Expedia in the ’90s.

“I just hope it ends differently this time,” he said.

Rick Webb, co-founder of the Barbarian Group advertising agency, who is now taking time off from the tech scene, seemed unimpressed by the new companies presenting themselves at the conference. ”It just doesn’t feel like there is anything new out there. All the start-ups keep announcing the same thing with a different name and a lot of money backing them.”

Rachel Sklar, an adviser for Hashable, a business networking application, said: “The mood of the conference feels like it’s a gold rush. It feels like a bit of a scramble.”

She said, ”Everyone just wants a little piece of everything that is happening, from social to mobile, even as many of these start-ups feel insular.”

But the newbies to the tech scene saw things a little differently.

John Exley, a 22-year-old marketing coordinator, talked about the state of technology with the effervescence of a lottery winner. “It’s electric!” Mr. Exley gleefully proclaimed. “I think we’re only in the beginning of what’s possible with social and mobile and the start-up scene.”

“My bet is there will be a small downturn but it will pick right back up,” Mr. Exley said. “I don’t think it’ll be anything like what I read about happening when I was 9 years old.”

From Media Decoder: Mashable Expands

Mashable, the popular Web site for information about technology and social media, said Monday that it was expanding coverage to include new sections for entertainment, United States news and world news, and that it was hiring a veteran technology editor to oversee all of its editorial content. More …

Monday, September 12, 2011

Sprint App Shuts Down Driver’s Phone

Smartphones have led to more distracted driving. They’re also helping to mitigate it with a host of new apps aimed at shutting down a driver’s device.

Add Sprint to the list of companies offering such an app. On Monday, Sprint announced that it is offering “Sprint Drive First” for Android phones (and coming soon for BlackBerry and other operating systems). The app automatically disables the phone when it is traveling more than 10 miles an hour, which the phone determines using GPS.

The app then sends a message to an incoming caller or texter indicating that the person they’re trying to contact is behind the wheel.

Sprint is advertising the app as something parents might want to buy for teenage drivers, but it says it hopes the audience will be broader than that. The app, which costs $2 per month per phone, can be overridden with two button pushes.

“You can’t stop a teen from turning it off, but there are obvious reasons why you’d want to be able to override it — like if you’re a passenger in a car, or bus or train,” said Walter Fowler, a spokesman for Sprint. “So we feel the override does need to be there.”

He added: “But kids should know that parents or account holders can receive notification if the service is overridden.”

Safety advocates have said that Sprint and other wireless carriers have over many decades helped create a culture of multitasking behind the wheel — not just by selling technology/07distracted.html?pagewanted=all">car phones but also by promoting an always-on culture. In the last few years, the carriers have begun various initiatives aimed at, in particular, discouraging texting and such multitasking by teenagers and inexperienced drivers.

Carol Bartz Resigns From Yahoo Board

Carol A. Bartz, who was fired as chief executive of Yahoo last week, has cut her final tie to the company by resigning from its board.
Her decision follows the usual script. But the outcome was far from inevitable.

Last week, Ms. Bartz, who is known for her pugnacious style, was technology/carol-bartz-yahoos-chief-executive-is-fired.html?_r=1&ref=carolbartz">fired by phone after a rocky two-year tenure trying to revive Yahoo. She did not take the firing well.

In an interview with Fortune, Ms. Bartz described Yahoo’s board members as “doofuses” and indicated that she may hang on to her seat. Never mind that her employment contract spelled out that she had to resign.

Yahoo took the unusual step the day the interview was published of issuing a statement saying “Ms. Bartz is obligated to resign from the board and we expect her to do so.” She heeded the message by resigning on Friday, Yahoo said two days after the fact.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Google Warns Users in Iran About Security Issue

Google took the unusual step of warning Gmail users in Iran to “secure their accounts,” a week after an unidentified hacker generated technology/internet/hackers-impersonate-google-to-snoop-on-users-in-iran.html?_r=1">fake Web site verification certificates that may have allowed the Iranian state to monitor communications by its citizens, including dissidents.

On Google’s security blog late Thursday, Eric Grosse, vice president for security engineering, said the company was “directly contacting possibly affected users.” He noted that users of the Google Chrome browser were unaffected by the malicious attack but urged “all users in Iran to take concrete steps to secure their accounts.”

The company spelled out five separate steps, beginning with changing passwords and verifying account recovery options to ensure that alternate e-mail addresses and phone numbers are updated. It went on to advise users to make sure unfamiliar apps and Web sites did not have access to their accounts and that e-mails were not being automatically forwarded to suspicious, unknown addresses.

Google was not the only site to be affected by the attack. The hacker produced fake certificates for other communications sites, including Skype and Facebook. The certificates could be used by a third party with control of an Internet service provider. That third party could in turn eavesdrop on supposedly secure online conversations.

Friday, September 09, 2011

On 9/11, the Seeds of the Infinite Grapevine

technology/09bits-911/09bits-911-blog480.jpg" alt="Downtown Manhattan, Sept. 12, 2001." width="480" height="312" />Joshua Brustein/The New York TimesDowntown Manhattan, Sept. 12, 2001.

One of the last times I remember actually waiting for film to be developed was in mid-September 2001. I was a college student living in downtown Manhattan, and had taken dozens of photographs from the roof of my dorm, where I watched the World Trade Center collapse, and then from ground zero and Union Square, where I spent most of the next day. When I ran out of film, I dropped it off at a storefront on Waverly Street and waited.

If I had been in the same situation 10 years later, I would have naturally jumped into the role of citizen journalist. But that phrase wasn’t even in the vernacular in 2001. (The technology/forget-f-stops-these-cameras-have-area-codes.html">first time that The Times used the phrase was two years later, in an article about the nascent world of camera phones, which were so new at the time that one of the sources questioned whether they would really catch on.) When my photographs were ready, I showed them around a little, and put them in a box. My tiny part of the story did not go beyond my tiny circle of friends and family.

This is not just a lament for a lost chance at self-expression. In the last several years, major events in Mumbai, Iran and across the Middle East have shown that technical tools that allow people to share their experiences in real time play a real role in deepening our understanding of these events, and can change the course of the events themselves. Common devices and services, like Twitter and smartphones, make it possible to get a true sense of what is happening in chaotic events where dozens of people are giving the world their confused versions of events in real time.

“If you see 30 or 40 people describing what was happening it almost becomes a form of situational awareness, like you’re floating above it in a helicopter,” said Andy Carvin, a strategist for social media at National Public Radio who has been active in following the Arab Spring.

The 9/11 attack was one of the last major world events that wouldn’t be accompanied by this torrent of online communications. But while the experience of 9/11 would have been very different had it happened after the development of our current create-while-consuming media ethos, the seeds of change were clearly visible 10 years ago.

The Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History began collecting people’s images from 9/11 soon after the attacks. For the first time, curators noticed a large number of digital images mixed in with photographs taken on film. It was clear that a major change was going on in the way that major events were photographed, said Shannon Perich, an associate curator at the museum. Everything was about to speed up.

“We quickly understood that this was a transitional moment,” she said. “We understood what digital photography meant to the world at that point.”

Mr. Carvin was working near the White House on Sept. 11, 2001. After being evacuated from his office, he arrived at his apartment and immediately sat down at his computer and started an e-mail discussion group encouraging people to share information and impressions about what was happening. About 1,500 people signed up; for much of the day people were sending about an e-mail per minute, said Mr. Carvin.

These e-mail groups were the first time that Mr. Carvin organized an online community intended to exchange information in real time. Since then, he has gained a certain renown for doing similar work on Twitter during the Arab Spring protests.

The basic activity was the same 10 years ago, said Mr. Carvin; what was missing was the scale. After 9/11, the avenues through which these messages traveled were only semi-public. Someone had to know to look for an e-mail list or message board. Now the tools are integrated into their daily lives.

“Back then, the grapevines were somewhat limited,” said Mr. Carvin. “If you reached out through Listservs or blogs, you might be able to get one or two degrees of separation of people passing the information along, which might add up to the hundreds or thousands of people. But now, with Facebook and Twitter, those are essentially infinite grapevines.”

These trends have given us an intimate look into events, often violent ones, that have historically seemed relatively distant. Of course, not everyone sees this as a good thing.

Katharine Weymouth, publisher and chief executive of the Washington Post Company, said at a conference Wednesday at the Newseum that she was grateful that such technology had not been developed in 2001. Watching video shot from inside the Twin Towers would have been too traumatic, she said.

“Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and all the technologies that have yet to be invented make all these events more real, and more horrific. Television pales in comparison,” she said, according to an account of the event posted on, a journalism Web site.

Mr. Carvin agrees that there would be a level of added trauma had people trapped in the World Trade Center been sending updates in real time, but he says he believes that this may have been accompanied by a certain catharsis. Whether this is true or not is debatable. But one thing is clear: there is no turning back.

This post has been revised to reflect the following correction:

Correction: September 9, 2011

An earlier version of this post incorrectly stated that Mr. Carvin was working near the Pentagon on 9/11.

Thursday, September 08, 2011

Senator Introduces Online Security Bill

Senator Richard Blumenthal, Democrat of Connecticut, introduced a new bill Thursday that aims to protect citizens’ personal information from online data breaches. The bill would also punish companies that are careless with customers’ information.

Senator Richard Blumenthal, Senator Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut has been pressing for online privacy legislation.

“The goal of the proposed law is essentially to hold accountable the companies and entities that store personal information and personal data and to deter data breaches,” Senator Blumenthal said in a phone interview. ”While looking at past data breaches, I’ve been struck with how many are preventable.”

The new bill, called the Personal Data Protection and Breach Accountability Act of 2011, comes at a time when online privacy and security are hot topics in Congress. The White House has also been involved in discussions around new online privacy rules and legislation.

The bill presented by Senator Blumenthal would introduce regulations for companies that store online data for more than 10,000 people. These rules would require companies to follow specific storage guidelines and ensure that personal information is stored and protected correctly. Companies that do not adhere to these security guidelines could be subject to stiff fines.

Senator Blumenthal was a vociferous critic of Sony’s handling of an attack on its servers earlier this year, which put data from 77 million customers at risk. At the time, the senator pressed Sony to disclose the extent of the damage and to notify customers who had been affected.

If the new bill passes, Senator Blumenthal said, customers would be able to sue companies, like Sony, that do not take adequate precautions.

“The Sony data breach has became a poster child of why we need this law,” he said. “We were working on this legislation well before that data breach occurred, but Sony is a good example of why this law should exist.”

Finding an Instant Date Nearby, With an App

There are online dating services, and then there are location-based social services like Foursquare. A new application called Blendr combines the two, letting users cut to the chase and find someone to meet nearby, right now.

technology/07bits-blendr/07bits-blendr-articleInline.jpg" alt="Blendr was created by the man behind Grindr, a popular app that helps gay men locate others near them." width="190" height="287" />Blendr was created by the man behind Grindr, a popular app that helps gay men locate others near them.

After firing up the application, which is free and available for Apple iOS devices and on Facebook, users create a simple profile featuring a photo and a short description of themselves. They select several options from a long list of interests — everything from liking tennis to being a fan of Gossip Girl. The app then shows people nearby who have also used the app recently and share similar interests.

The app’s creator, Joel Simkhai, says it is based on the notion that it doesn’t take complicated matching software to find a mate, or even to meet a new friend. Knowing that someone with a shared love of dim sum or poker is nearby is enough to break the ice with that person and lead to a meeting.

“If someone speaks the same language or is also into cooking, or crafts, that’s a strong basis of commonality and you might want to go meet them,” he said.

People can send quick messages to one another through the application, and they can use it to post status messages on Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare, if they choose. The application also offers a check-in feature so that users can broadcast their location to others using the app when they are at a concert or coffee shop.

But the application also incorporates several privacy features so that users can decide who sees them and when. The application doesn’t show an exact location, just a rough estimate of how far away a user is — such as 25 or 300 feet. In addition, the app offers several ways to control who can see your profile. For example, 25-year-old women using the app who decide they want to meet only 25-year-old men can adjust their settings appropriately so their profile is only visible to that group.

“Even if you’re a married man and you only want to meet other married men to play poker, you can set the settings to show those matches,” Mr. Simkhai said.

For now the app is supported by advertising, but Mr. Simkhai said there could one day be a paid version with additional features.

Mr. Simkhai knows a thing or two about successful mobile dating applications. He’s also the entrepreneur behind Grindr, a popular app that helps gay men locate others near them. He says Grindr, which was released in 2009, has attracted 2.6 million users in nearly 200 countries.

Mr. Simkhai said he had been barraged with requests for a similar service for other groups and has been working on Blendr for the last year. He wanted people to be able to use the app to find dates, but also new friends.

“We decided to make an app that helps people discover a more social world around them,” he said.

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Tech Talk Podcast: Promoting Hollywood

Movie marketing has evolved far beyond lobby posters and trailer clips to elaborate campaigns that sometimes start even more the film itself begins shooting. In this week’s Tech Talk podcast Jason Yim, the president and executive creative director of Trigger, a digital-marketing company, discusses some of the sites and apps his company has created for different Hollywood movies.

Although the Internet is often thought of as a free and open place to roam, parts of it are less traveled and secretive. Pedro Rafael Rosado shines a light on this area known as the “dark Web.”

This week’s technology headlines include the latest legal twist in the proposed mega-merger between AT&T and T-Mobile;two Mexican citizens accused of using Twitter to spread false information face harsh consequences; Google does a bit of clean-up, both by dumping a few of its lesser-used products and services and by promising action to the recent issue of incorrect business listings on the Google Maps site.

Tired of older Web sites looking odd or out of sorts in Internet Explorer 9? This week’s computer tip points the way to the Compatibility View feature that may help those sites look like they should.
To find out more about the show and links to topics that were discussed, go to the technology/techtalk.html">Tech Talk page.

You can download the show by subscribing from the New York Times podcast page or directly from iTunes.

For help finding specific segments of the Bits: Tech Talk podcast, use these time codes:

News â€" 27:47
Digital Movie Marketing â€" 15:14
Tech Term â€" 06:43
Tip of the Week â€" 3:40

Serendipity Books, R.I.P.

Who doesn’t love buying online? It offers a bigger selection for less money, ordered from the privacy of your home and delivered there too. But if e-commerce is great for consumers, it is more  problematic for citizens. The sales tax that people pay in physical stores helps pay for the upkeep of their communities. The physical stores also provide employment; these workers can afford in turn to buy things and thus keep the economy afloat. Few such benefits flow from e-commerce.

The bookseller Peter B. Howard, shortly before his death.Daniel StreitfeldThe bookseller Peter B. Howard, shortly before his death.

California, with a colossal hole in its budget and 12 percent unemployment, is confronting this quandary as it tries to compel to collect sales tax. Amazon is so confident that bargain-hunting consumers will rally to its side that it is essentially ignoring the law. Maybe they will.

But astechnology/in-california-amazon-pushes-hard-to-kill-a-tax.html?_r=1&ref=davidstreitfeld "> the battle between the state and the retailer was heating up late last week, news came that Serendipity Books in Berkeley was closing. Antiquarian stores like Serendipity were once plentiful. They specialized in winnowing the detritus of the past, plucking the important material for collectors, scholars and institutions. Serendipity was for decades one of the best such shops, and eventually one of the last. In the years to come, people will have a hard time appreciating there were such places, where anyone who wanted to could look and learn and buy, or maybe just while away a rainy afternoon. So let’s spend a moment giving Serendipity its due.

The store was founded by Peter B. Howard in the early 1960s with the notion that the best bookshop in the world would have one copy of everything. It sometimes seemed as if Serendipity fulfilled this dream. Potential customers were confronted with a warren of rooms, some two stories high, with good books stuffed absolutely everywhere, including in shopping bags blocking the narrow aisles. Although there was clearly an underlying order, its nature was hard to discern; there were no signs. People would wander in a daze, sometimes asking, “Do you sell books here?” They thought it was a library or perhaps a museum.

The lack of direction was on purpose and in earnest. Mr. Howard wanted people to search for books and find not just what they were looking for but the book next to it, which they might want more if they only realized it existed. “The bookstore is an infinite array of material and knowledge of which you know nothing,” he said. “If you’re focused, you go to the library.”

Or, these days, you go online. Serendipity largely ignored the Web
as a publicity and selling device and the Internet returned the favor.

Mr. Howard might have created a wonder-filled shop, but on Yelp the reviews were few and grudging. One reviewer complained that prices were too high. Another said the store offered too little when it was buying your old books. Neither seemed to appreciate that the store could exist only because there was a merchant in the middle of these transactions trying to make a living, and that there was a benefit to the community that it was this way.

Mr. Howard bought and sold collections as well as individual books, including the world’s greatest assortment of lost race fiction (a peculiar American fixation in the early years of the 20th century; Tarzan was its most famous exemplar); a 5,000-item gathering of material about baseball dating from 1819; proletarian literature from the 1930s; classic film scripts from all eras; geoscience and paleontology published between 1550 and 1850; pioneering collections of fiction and nonfiction about the oil industry and the Vietnam War. The store featured Carl Sandburg’s guitar and Jack London’s spears. The poetry sections were a trove of obscure versifiers, unrivaled by any store in the country. There were vast holdings of Canadiana, books in Russian from the early Soviet period, every book in seemingly every edition by John Steinbeck, from $20,000 inscribed copies of The Grapes of Wrath to paperback reprints. Mr. Howard believed in volume and breadth.

You needed to know what you were doing to take advantage of Serendipity, which used to be the way the world worked. Finding the books was only the beginning. After you stumbled on things you wanted to take home â€" perhaps through persistence, perhaps by serendipity â€" you would be making a mistake to take your choices to the bookkeeper in her alcove, the closest the store had to a checkout till. Instead, the smart customer would take them up to Mr. Howard, pausing first to see if the Giants had won their most recent game.

The fortunes of the team often affected how much he would charge for books. This quirk was so pronounced it was immortalized in print. In Samuel Gottlieb’s “Overbooked in Arizona,” the tale of a book collector gone mad, the protagonist is driving from Phoenix to Berkeley to buy books at Serendipity when the Giants lose a game they had been winning. He cuts across the median and heads back home, knowing the trip is now in vain.

If your chosen books were already priced, Mr. Howard almost always lowered the sum demanded for each unless he didn’t like you. If they were unpriced, four out of five would be less than you hoped while one would be much more. But you had to take all of them if you wanted a similar deal next time. The books would be written up by hand on an invoice, a tedious process but on Saturdays Mr. Howard nourished all comers with pastries and coffee. When the books finally changed hands, money did not necessarily follow. Like a good bar, which in some ways it resembled, Serendipity allowed customers to run a tab and pay more or less when they wanted. As I write this, I owe $388.

Suppose you took a book home and belatedly decided, for whatever reason, you did not want it? All Serendipity catalogs were emblazoned with the remark, “Any book may be returned for any reason.” I returned a book. Once. As Mr. Howard complained about my bad faith, I referred to the guarantee. Mr. Howard’s wife, Alison, who was listening, responded sweetly: “We said we’d accept back any book. We didn’t say we’d do it happily.”

Downloading ebooks was nothing like this. Serendipity was a refuge and an education.

And sometimes a pain. Mr. Howard could be a difficult man. “He always had an instant answer he would throw in your face in the manner of some biblical prophet,” the bookseller David Mason wrote. Yet he was also wildly generous, a quality never more on display than in his famous biannual parties when the store would be swept clean and a fabulous all-day feast put on, with suckling pigs and fine wine. It was a way of rooting himself in the community. Customers would walk in with an interesting tale and interesting books, and Mr. Howard would buy them. “Because I own the building, I can have a lot of books, and because I have a lot of books in a visible place, things can happen,” he said.

Mr. Howard was too irascible to train a successor but when he developed pancreatic cancer two years ago, he began trying to sell the store. The price would have been about the seven-figure sum that it takes to buy a nice house in Berkeley, a pittance really. There were no takers. Who wants a half-million books in the Internet Age?

The bookseller was 72 when he died on March 31, Opening Day, while watching his beloved Giants. He checked out in the bottom of the sixth, when the score was still 0-0 and before the Giants could lose. The store hung on a couple more months as the Howard family considered its options. Late last week, Nancy Kosenka, Mr. Howard’s longtime deputy, posted on her Facebook page that Saturday would be it. Sales were brisk. Late in the afternoon, a first-time customer walked in, scanned the shelves in bewilderment and inevitably asked, “Do you sell books here?” Not anymore.