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To: Cogito who wrote (125977)2/19/2012 3:57:37 PM
From: 2MAR$
   of 172271
 
In law school there was the expression always liked : "when the going gets weird , the weird go professional ! "


or in Steve's case start a tech company or in others start B2b or B2c and now social websites/networks .


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To: 2MAR$ who wrote (125978)2/19/2012 4:09:45 PM
From: Cogito
1 Recommendation   of 172271
 
>>In law school there was the expression always liked : "when the going gets weird , the weird go professional ! "<<

That's from Hunter S. Thompson. The original version was "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." It really is a brilliant line.

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From: Neal Guttenberg2/19/2012 4:21:19 PM
   of 172271
 
Interesting article from PC magazine on the convergence of mobile and desktop OSes from MSFT and AAPL.

thinkdigit.com 

The author thinks for MSFT to win, it has to differentiate itself from Apple but MSFT has a lot riding on this. Apple has first mover advantage though.

Neal

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To: Cogito who wrote (125975)2/19/2012 4:22:11 PM
From: Win-Lose-Draw
   of 172271
 
I am indeed using Wifi.

Thanks, should have thought of that, it was acting positivey Flash-like.

Next question: how come the only people who act like they've never seen a zombie movie are the people acting in zombie movies?

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To: Sr K who wrote (125971)2/19/2012 4:50:46 PM
From: Stock Puppy
1 Recommendation   of 172271
 
:-)
...But last year there was anticipation about whether SJ would show up. When he didn't, that, to me, caused the disappointment and sell off last year (after the meeting).



Well just imagine what would happen to the stock price if he showed up for this year's meeting.

Never mind the price, it'd probably start a new religion... :-)

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To: Win-Lose-Draw who wrote (125981)2/19/2012 4:58:07 PM
From: Stock Puppy
   of 172271
 
:-)
Next question: how come the only people who act like they've never seen a zombie movie are the people acting in zombie movies?

I have no idea.



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To: Stock Puppy who wrote (125983)2/19/2012 7:48:05 PM
From: jeftuxedo
   of 172271
 
So funny:):) Where do you find this stuff?! Please, keep them coming:) Jef

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From: Road Walker2/20/2012 9:54:31 AM
3 Recommendations   of 172271
 
Why Apple didn't include Siri in OS X Mountain Lion



By Christina Bonnington, WIRED
updated 7:56 AM EST, Mon February 20, 2012 | Filed under: Innovations


(WIRED) -- Apple's latest OS X update, Mountain Lion, adds a slate of new features, nearly all derived from iOS 5. There's one big omission, however: Siri, Apple's voice-controlled virtual assistant, does not make the migration from mobile to desktop.

Now, technically, Siri isn't a part of iOS 5. It's marketed as the most game-changing feature of the iPhone 4S (which runs iOS 5), and Apple has remained mum on whether Siri will ever be ported to other devices — this to the pique of independent developers who've hacked the feature to run on everything from the iPod touch to thermostats.

Clearly, Siri is Apple's most celebrated user feature. And, clearly, there's interest to see it appear on other Apple devices. Indeed, companies throughout the consumer tech industry are exploring novel new user interface models, including voice-control and gesture-control.

But porting Siri to Mountain Lion desktops would pose several challenges. Apple was smart to leave it out of the latest desktop update, and here's why.

Microphone logistics


Siri: Apple's new voice recognition
Microphone positioning on MacBooks and iMacs would present technical challenges for any Siri desktop port.

The iPhone is designed to be held up to your face, and has a built-in mic that includes advanced noise reduction technology to ensure your voice is heard loud and clear, while street noise and the nearby guy shouting into his phone aren't picked up.

In part, this is accomplished by using two microphones: one near your mouth to pick up your voice, and another near the headphone jack to identify and cancel out background noise.

Yes, your MacBook Pro has an omnidirectional microphone built-in. It's very convenient for using FaceTime in conjunction with the notebook's camera, or for the speech recognition function built into Macs for OS control.

The omnidirectional mic, however, doesn't offer the same voice-processing sensitivity of the iPhone 4's dual-mic arrangement. All told, Siri voice analysis would be far more challenging on a Mac computer, particularly when other voices or noises are in the room.

Granted, using an external mic, or even the mic on your throwaway iDevice earbuds, could provide a solution. But even though Siri is still considered a beta product, Apple wouldn't resort to such an inelegant hack just to put Siri on Macs.

"Apple has been reluctant to put in features that require something like that," Forrester analyst Frank Gillett told Wired. "It's too fussy for what they like to do. Current speech-recognition products work pretty well if you wear a special high-quality microphone. What's very clear is they need the mic on your face, right by your lips."

Location detection

Siri is all about location-awareness. She wants to give you directions, provide local weather reports, and locate the closest sources of exotic cuisine. But desktop computers don't include native GPS.

"I think the main challenge [in bringing Siri to Mountain Lion] would be the lack of an accurate location being available," said William Tunstall-Pedoe, CEO of True Knowledge, which has developed a Siri clone called Evi. What's more, as Tunstall-Pedoe points out, desktop computers are relatively stationary devices, so a Mac version of Siri may not even need location-awareness, as a large portion of Siri's talents would never be engaged.

All of which begs the question, If a good portion of Siri's functionality isn't even germane to the desktop experience, why even deliver a port?

While MacBooks don't currently include GPS services, various web services (like Google Maps) can figure out your location by using either IP geolocation, or by triangulating your position based on WiFi networks around you. These strategies, however, deliver location accuracy limited to about 150 feet, whereas GPS can peg you within 10 feet of your precise position on the Earth. Future MacBooks could easily include GPS chip built-in for more exact positioning, but for now, laptop and desktop geolocation capabilities aren't accurate — or even that necessary.

Hands-free voice control isn't needed

People tend to use Siri because their hands are tied, like when driving. Thus, "Siri, where's the nearest gas station?" With Siri, you can find the answer quickly, and relatively safely, while keeping your eyes on the road. But these basic use cases just don't transfer to the desktop.

"I think it is fair to say that the advantages that a voice-powered assistant give are stronger on a small mobile device," Tunstall-Pedoe said. "PCs typically have a much larger screen and a keyboard and mouse." Or, in Apple's case, a trackpad or Magic Trackpad instead of a mouse, depending if you're on a laptop or desktop.

Either way, hand-driven data entry is a familiar — and generally effective — method for using today's computers. What's more, as Tunstall-Pedoe points out, "PCs are also often used in environments where the use of voice would be awkward," such as inside an open floor plan office.

Granted, if you're disabled or injured, you could certainly make use of a hands-free feature. But in these cases, you would probably want a tool more robust than Siri. Which brings us to our next point:

Limited use cases

With Siri, you can do things like schedule reminders, look up restaurant and business information on Yelp, get information from Wolfram|Alpha, and ask general search engine-style queries. That's not a large number of functions, and they're not specifically suited to the desktop environment.

Indeed, why would you have Siri look up something when you can more quickly run your own Google search?

"On the iPhone, people want to do short things, like quick dictation and sending a quick text message," Gillette says. The use cases would be different on a Mac, and not necessarily centered around short phrases. Siri's capabilities would need to expand in order to handle these different functions.

Always-on data

Lastly, Siri needs a constant data connection in order to interface with Apple's servers. Until MacBooks include a built-in 3G, or more likely, 4G data connection, WiFi alone won't cut it for consistent, high-quality network availability, Gillett says.

Gillett also believes Siri ties into unique hardware features that make chatter between one's device and Apple's data center more streamlined. "There seems to be special silicon within a special chip that has capabilities for voice recognition that a Mac wouldn't have," he said.

Gillett notes that Siri is sometimes able to analyze a query and provide a response extremely quickly, while other times, it takes 10 to 15 seconds of processing. "I think the chip does some pre-analysis, shrinks stuff it has to send, Apple's data center gets a crunched answer, and Siri displays it on screen," Gillett said.

"Apple may be working on Siri-enabling features [for Macs] in the future, but there will be some hardware enhancements to go with it," Gillett said. "And they'll think long and hard about the use case before they implement a voice feature in the Mac."

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From: Road Walker2/20/2012 11:06:29 AM
4 Recommendations   of 172271
 
Should The FTC Investigate Google's Safari Gaffe? By Ian Paul, PCWorld Feb 20, 2012 7:35 AM





rivacy advocates and now some members of Congress say Google should answer for its practice of bypassing the default privacy settings of potentially millions of users of Apple's Safari browser.

Three members of the U.S. House of Representatives are asking the Federal Trade Commission to investigate Google's Safari workaround. The Electronic Privacy Information Center is going further, asking [PDF] the FTC to find that Google violated its recent settlement with the federal agency regarding its Buzz privacy practices. Google, meanwhile, says it was merely using "known functionality" in Safari and any resulting privacy violations were just a mishap the company "didn't anticipate."

Goofari The Wall Street Journalrecently reported that Google was bypassing the default privacy settings in Apple's Safari for both desktop and mobile devices. Google's privacy violations potentially include users of iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, and Mac OS X devices, as well as Safari for Windows users. Safari's defaults prohibit third parties such as advertising and web analytics firms from setting tracking cookies without user authorization. This presented a problem for Google, since the company wanted to identify when users were signed in to their Google accounts in order to deliver personalized advertising and the ability to +1 (similar to a Facebook like) items online.

To get around this issue, Google inserted an invisible web form into its advertising if a user clicked on the company's +1 buttons embedded in Google advertising. Safari would then think the user interacted with the invisible form and allow the browser to accept further cookies.

This workaround also enabled Google to track users across the web even though their privacy settings said they didn't want to be tracked. Google responded to the accusations by saying it was only providing features that signed-in Google users had enabled using "known functionality" in Safari's web browser. But, the company said, it didn't anticipate that Safari's "known functionality" would have the side effect of allowing other tracking cookies to be set as well, such as cookies from its advertising service, DoubleClick.

So should the FTC chalk this up to a big misunderstanding and a mistake, or investigate Google's potential misbehavior? Regardless, of Google's motives, I think the FTC should investigate and here's why.

Broke the Rules "We used known Safari functionality to provide features that signed-in Google users had enabled," says Rachel Whetstone, Google's senior vice president of communications and public policy in response to the Journal's report. "Unlike other major browsers, Apple’s Safari browser blocks third-party cookies by default. However, Safari enables many web features for its users that rely on third parties and third-party cookies...Last year, we began using this functionality to enable features for signed-in Google users on Safari."

Whetstone argues that Google was only enabling "known functionality" in Safari to carry out the wishes of signed-in Google users. But was this the best plan? Instead of using this workaround couldn't Google have used a browser pop-up or a web page redirect to alert users they needed to change their cookie settings to enable this kind of activity? Instead, the company chose to use an invisible method beyond the control of the user.

Popularity Thanks to the popularity of Apple's Safari browser on iOS, the result of Google's workaround is that the privacy of perhaps millions of users was violated. Apple's Safari currently accounts for 55 percent of all smartphone and tablet browsing activity worldwide, according to metrics firm Netmarketshare.

Same old Song and Dance Every time Google is found to be up to no good, the company uses virtually the same excuse: "Oops, sorry, that was a mistake, we didn't know we were doing that." This time around it was Whetstone saying that Google "didn't anticipate" its Safari workaround would allow it to set tracking cookies the user hadn't explicitly authorized.

When privacy concerns were raised over Google's failed social networking platform, Buzz, in February 2010, the company responded, "We quickly realized that we didn't get everything quite right. We're very sorry for the concern we've caused." Google then promised to do better.

A few months later, in May, Google was caught collecting user data from unencrypted Wi-Fi networks as it used its Street View cars to create a worldwide database of Wi-Fi routers to help improve the company's mobile location services. "We have been mistakenly collecting samples of payload data from open (i.e. non-password-protected) WiFi networks, even though we never used that data in any Google products," Google said.

More recently, in January, Google was accused of trying to weasel money out of small business owners in Kenya, Africa by falsely claiming that it was in a joint venture with Mocality, a Kenya-based crowd sourced business directory. And what was Google's response this time? "We were mortified to learn that a team of people working on a Google project improperly used Mocality’s data and misrepresented our relationship with Mocality," said Nelson Mattos Google's vice president for product and engineering in Europe and emerging markets. "We’re still investigating exactly how this happened, and as soon as we have all the facts, we’ll be taking the appropriate action with the people involved." Oops, we didn't know -- again.

So inside of 12 months, Google has committed four serious gaffes and for all four times the company said it didn't realize what it was doing. That may in fact be true in each case, but does oversight excuse the error? How many times can Google say, "Oops, we goofed, we didn't know" before the company is held to account for its self-inflicted stupidity? Accident or not, Google should be investigated for its bad behavior and held accountable for its actions.

Connect with Ian Paul ( @ianpaul) on Twitter and Google+, and with Today@PCWorld on Twitter for the latest tech news and analysis.

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From: Road Walker2/20/2012 3:06:49 PM
   of 172271
 
Apple touts N.C. solar array in environmental footprint report

Read more: news.cnet.com 

My comment--- "Siri are you sun powered?"

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