“Ultimately, we should ask ourselves: if we drop more bombs on more Muslim countries, will there be fewer or more Muslims who want to blow up our airplanes and are willing to end their lives to do so? That question really answers itself.”—Glenn Greenwald - Salon.com
Joel Johnson is so right on all of this. There has to be an end to this theater. Otherwise we’ll end up on the airplane naked, sedated and tied to our seats after a seven hour search, interrogation, quarantine and full body CT at the airport.
“I am white, but I am more African than any black person who was raised in America. Should people really still be defined by their race, or is where they come from more important? For example, aren’t African-Americans just Americans? - Thomas Troxler,
South Africa”—From 100 questions at dropping knowledge
If Google really integrate Google Voice, Google Talk and Gizmo they might take a shot at the big telcos. The question remains whether the telcos wouldn’t fight back by blocking VOIP on their networks. Telcos earn a lot from cellular voice plans and those plans lock in customers for two sometimes even three years. They won’t be reduced to mere bandwidth providers without a fight for sure. But same as data plans over landlines now have to be sold without phone plans mobile data plans will be decoupled from calling plans.
I’ve got a quasi data.only plan from O2 (voice is without a monthly fee - I only have to pay for the minutes I use and I don’t use any) and would like to use VOIP on my phone. There is only one problem right now - Skype doesn’t work. So I’ve got to wait. Voice solutions will come to mobile phones. They’re on the horizon already.
The Motorola Milestone, aka Droid, seems to be in short supply in Germany where I bought my unit. When I got it in mid November it was available online for short periods and then sold out again. This smartphone still is a phone mostly gadget nerds will get, and smartphones themselves are not a product for the majority of consumers yet. Well, I only found few people posting in Android or mobile phone forums about the Milestone. This makes me think only few units have been sold yet. In Germany you can’t even get the car dock or the multimedia station anywhere. Only Vodafone sold some Milestones bundled with the multimedia station. Some people got one from the States through Ebay.
Just made my annual donation to Wikimedia. Between the years I will have to have a look at the entries I wrote and see that they are up to date. Wikipedia has become a pillar of the internet. Knowledge has become accessible to more people than ever before. Students of low income families wh o never had reference works at home can now check facts and do research. Wikipedia democratized knowledge. Of course there is a grain of salt as with everything but I think what we gained outweighs the negative part (infighting within the Wikipedia community aso.).
Google should keept EtherPad going because right now Google Wave is no substitute. EtherPad can be used without a Google account and it is much easier to use. It’s a great tool for education. Students can easily collaborate on the creation of texts and more.
In 1990 this would have left me speechless but today, well, today it’s what I expect to happen, what I take for granted. Computers will shrink even further and hardware will become cheaper and cheaper. Costs for raw materials will sink with this shrinkage. Only manufacturing costs will go down slower. Design costs won’t increase because computers take over more and more of the design process.
“The sky’s the limit here: Consumers don’t own digital libraries of books, as they did with music: When mp3 players came out, most consumers owned CDs that could be easily burned to a computer and downloaded to a device. Not so with books.”—
One of the incentives to buy an mp3 player was that most consumers owned CDs they could rip and or downloaded or share mp3s they could load onto the mp3 player.
But with books that’s different. Even if consumers could rip books and download them to an e-reader they wouldn’t. Why is that so? Most books don’t get read twice. We fancy we will read most books once more one day but most just collect dust and become placeholders for dear memories of a good read.
Music consumption differs from book consumption for that one reason. We like to listen to music we listened to years ago but it’s easy to do and doesn’t cost much time, the length of a song or a CD and we can listen while we do something else. Not so with a book. Re-reading a book is a commitment and takes many hours and spans many days if not weeks.
That’s why I think you can’t compare e-readers to mp3 players. Consumers who buy e-readers will load them with new books, not old ones. Not already owning books they can put onto their new e-readers therefore won’t be an impediment to most consumers who plan to buy an e-reader.