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Comment: Your thoughts on Android now (Score 1) 87

Reading back through some of your early statements on Android (and leaving aside Sun-Oracle-Google patent disputes) it seems you had some major concerns about interoperability and consistencies between APIs across devices or within the system itself, and generally like its openness would be problematic because each OEM was just going to do their own thing with it.

How (if at all) have your opinions or views of Android changed at all in the last 4 years?
Crime

Things You Drink Can Be Used To Track You 202

Posted by timothy
from the don't-hate-me-because-I'm-a-beautiful-spy dept.
sciencehabit writes with an intriguing story about the potential of figuring out where people have been by examining their hair: "That's because water molecules differ slightly in their isotope ratios depending on the minerals at their source. Researchers found that water samples from 33 cities across the United State could be reliably traced back to their origin based on their isotope ratios. And because the human body breaks down water's constituent atoms of hydrogen and oxygen to construct the proteins that make hair cells, those cells can preserve the record of a person's travels. Such information could help prosecutors place a suspect at the scene of a crime, or prove the innocence of the accused." Or frame someone by slipping them water from every country on the terrorist watchlist.
Businesses

Former Exec Says Electronic Arts "Is In the Wrong Business" 180

Posted by Soulskill
from the inspiring-internet-outrage-is-a-bad-business-model dept.
Mitch Lasky was the executive vice president of Mobile and Online at Electronic Arts until leaving the publisher to work at an investment firm. He now has some harsh things to say about how EA has been run over the past several years, in particular criticizing the decisions of CEO John Riccitiello. Quoting: "EA is in the wrong business, with the wrong cost structure and the wrong team, but somehow they seem to think that it is going to be a smooth, two-year transition from packaged goods to digital. Think again. ... by far the greatest failure of Riccitiello's strategy has been the EA Games division. JR bet his tenure on EA's ability to 'grow their way through the transition' to digital/online with hit packaged goods titles. They honestly believed that they had a decade to make this transition (I think it's more like 2-3 years). Since the recurring-revenue sports titles were already 'booked' (i.e., fully accounted for in the Wall Street estimates) it fell to EA Games to make hits that could move the needle. It's been a very ugly scene, indeed. From Spore, to Dead Space, to Mirror's Edge, to Need for Speed: Undercover, it's been one expensive commercial disappointment for EA Games after another. Not to mention the shut-down of Pandemic, half of the justification for EA's $850MM acquisition of Bioware-Pandemic. And don't think that Dante's Inferno, or Knights of the Old Republic, is going to make it all better. It's a bankrupt strategy."
Microsoft

XP Users Are Willing To Give Windows 7 a Chance 720

Posted by kdawson
from the light-at-the-end-of-the-long-tunnel-that-is-vista dept.
Harry writes "PC World and Technologizer conducted a survey of 5,000 people who use Windows XP as their primary operating system. Many have no plans to leave it, and 80% will be unhappy when Microsoft completely discontinues it. And attitudes towards Vista remain extremely negative. But a majority of those who know something about Windows 7 have a positive reaction. More important, 70 percent of respondents who have used Windows 7 say they like it, which is a sign that Windows 7 stands a chance of being what Vista never was: an upgrade good enough to convince most XP users to switch."
Google

Bing Users' Click-Through Rate 55% Higher Than Google Users' 268

Posted by timothy
from the hey-now-I-like-that-ads-subsidize-stuff dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Techcrunch is running a story that shows some pretty significant differences in the clicking habits of users of Yahoo, Google, and Bing. As it turns out, folks who arrive at websites via Bing are 55% more likely to click on an ad than if they arrived from Google (data based on the Chitika network). Essentially, people who use Bing are far more susceptible to advertising. Bing has acquired a decent market share in such a short time, but could it just be that they've reaped the low hanging fruit of those particularly persuaded by advertising? When their huge marketing campaign winds down, what kind of staying power will it have?"
Mars

+ - Closest Look Ever of the "Face of Mars"

Submitted by
Riding with Robots
Riding with Robots writes "The Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has returned the sharpest view ever of the famous "Face of Mars." The formation's reputation as an alien artifact stemmed from a 1970s Viking image. In recent years, different lighting conditions and much, much higher resolution views have dispelled the illusion of an ancient Martian monument, but the new pictures give modern Mars explorers additional clues about the water ice that may lie just below the surface. You can download the full-resolution version, which the circumspect MRO team has labeled simply, "Popular Landform in Cydonia Region." Meanwhile, NASA has just released a report explaining the likely fate of the Mars Global Surveyor, which went suddenly silent last year after a decade of service."
Music

+ - Fox selling American Idol singles as DRM-free MP3s

Submitted by IdolFan
IdolFan (44106) writes "Signaling yet another blow to the forces of DRM, Fox has decided to sell the singles from this season's American Idol finalists in high-quality (320kbps), unencumbered, MP3 format — for $0.99 a song. This hasn't been widely announced, so it's not clear if this is a permanent shift in strategy, or just a trial balloon."

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