Archive for May, 2008

I Want Wireless Entertainment, and I Want It Now

Wireless, multiroom home audio is here, sort of. But wireless HD video is still mostly a pipe dream. (An edited version of this originally appeared in the June 08 issue of PC World magazine.) Two things really irritate me. One is the miles of wire that you can see strung behind and between all the [...]

Quiz: Tech Celebrities 2.0

(Note: An edited/augmented version of this piece appeared on Infoworld.com.) Sure, you may know all about the garage where Apple was born, Michael Dell’s dorm room, or Bill Gates’ youthful indiscretions. But that’s all so 1997. The old guard of the PC revolution are giving way to the young Web 2.0 turks redefining technology for [...]

Whose Tube is it, anyway?

(This post originally appeared on Infoworld’s Notes From the Field blog.) Frankly, I thought Viacom’s $1 billion law suit against YouTube was dead. YouTube has been kicking people off its site left and right for posting copyrighted material, even if they didn’t always deserve it. And Viacom had started allowing its best material — like [...]

You Don’t Know Tech: The InfoWorld News Quiz

Is Microsoft-Yahoo truly dead? Why did CBS buy CNET? How much would you pay for a letter from a dead genius? And what is Carl Icahn’s problem anyway? The answers to these questions and more are found in this week’s quiz — provided you choose wisely. Correct responses are worth 10 points a shot. Ready? [...]

Turns out Twitter’s not so ‘tweet’

(This post originally appeared on Infoworld’s Notes From the Field blog.) Bad news for Twitter. The original micro-blogging service (now available in brief, mega-terse, and vowel-free versions) has been accused of aiding and abetting bad behavior on the Web. I am shocked, shocked I tell you. In case you’ve never used Twitter, here’s a quick [...]

Geek Week: Apple fans want 3G now, iPhones get ‘wow’ed

(This entry originally appeared on Infoworld’s Notes From the Field blog.) Slouching toward Cupertino. It’s not every day the Second Coming gives you advance notice, but the resurrection of the Jesus Phone — in 3G, for the first time ever! — is now (unofficially) slated for June 9. Or so says gadget blog Gizmodo, quoting [...]

MicroHoo, Facebook and You

(This post originally appeared on Infoworld’s Notes From the Field blog.) Don’t look now, but there’s a secret cabal at work conspiring to lock you out of the public Internet.  That, at least, is the hyperventilated opinion of Robert Scoble, who not so long ago was just another Microsoft employee with a blog and now [...]

You Don’t Know Tech: The News Quiz

Windows holes, Google food, aging tunesmiths, cranky billionaires, Tony Soprano, and — yes — the ghost of MicroHoo dominate this week’s quiz. Are you ready to demonstrate your geek street cred? Give yourself 10 points for correct answers and bupkis for everything else. Ready? Then let’s rock and roll. – Dan Tynan 1. Australian security [...]

HP, AMD, and XP SP3 — three things that don’t go well together

(This post originally appeared on Infoworld’s Notes From the Field blog.) Microsoft finally released XP’s Service Pack 3 to the masses last week, which is a bit like telling someone on death row you finally got around to fixing their car. Then it turns out your car may not really run, and if you have [...]

Geek Week: CNET gets swallowed, Yahoo proxy fight to follow

(This screed originally appeared on Infoworld’s Notes From the Field blog.) I think, therefore Icahn. Just when you thought the Yahoo-Microsoft deal was kaput, in steps everyone’s least favorite uncle Carl Icahn to muck things up. In a letter to the Yahoo board, the curmudgeon billionaire scolded board members, then announced his intentions to buy [...]

YouTube, copyrights, and copy wrongs

(This post originally appeared on Infoworld’s Notes From the Field blog.) The longer I stay in this business, the more I think I should have listened to my mother and become a copyright attorney. Don’t get me wrong — I love digging for dirt and punishing the technologically wicked, but just think of the employment [...]

DIY Identity-Theft Protection: A 12-Step Program

(This post originally appeared on PCworld.com.) You don’t have to spend $100 to $200 a year to defend yourself from identity theft at the level of protection that a paid service offers. You can do almost everything the services do, for free. But following these steps will require time and effort. Get a free copy [...]

Six Technologies That Will Change Your Life

In the next decade, we might not whiz around in jet cars or own personal robot servants, but we will whiz around in 3D virtual worlds and have access to the Internet from everywhere. (A version of this story appeared in the March/April issue of Consumer Digest magazine, which has no real online presence – [...]

Stupid marketing tricks

(This post originally appeared in Infoworld’s Notes From the Field blog.) So my phone rang one day last week and, naturally, there was a computer on the other end. But this wasn’t a political robo-call trying to confuse me into voting for the wrong candidate. This was a commercial robo-call from a Web site called [...]

ID Theft Protection: Who Can You Trust?

New online services offer to protect you from identity theft, and some claim to help you undo damage after it happens. But when we tested the services, we found that many fall short. (This story originally appeared in the June 2008 issue of PC World magazine.) by Dan Tynan You can’t open a newspaper or [...]

Geek Week: Microsoft prepares for war, BEA is no more

(This post originally appeared in Infoworld’s Notes From the Field blog.) One ring to rule them all. Remember that scene in The Lord of the Rings where Sauron has all the Orcs busy sharpening tools and digging up Goblins in preparation for the huge battle to decide the fate of man- elf- and dwarf-kind? That’s [...]

The Numbers Game

Someday all your home appliances will be logging onto the Net — and keeping an eye on you I have seen the future of the Internet, and it’s sitting on my desk inside a squishy leather pouch. I’m talking about The Chumby, a clock-sized gadget that logs onto my home network and displays Web content. [...]