writes "Comcast digital telephony customers who have unpublished telephone numbers will be receiving a letter from Comcast telling them that they will have to pay $4.95 for not having their privacy invaded in future. I received mine this morning. Perhaps not coincidentally, the quality of my Vonage over Comcast service has recently dropped to the point where it is unusable. So the net effect is that Comcast chooses to adopt telco pricing policies at the same time that their network no longer supports competition from the non-telcos.
Charging for a service according to its value rather than the cost of providing it is called functional pricing. In this case the cost of delivery is zero so we have functional pricing. Functional pricing can only be maintained when competition is restricted. It is a clear sign that a monopoly or duopoly is in operation.
Is the answer net neutrality? I don't think so. Attempting to draw up regulations to tell Comcast what to do is not going to work. The regulations are going to become obsolete very quickly and they are going to be very difficult to police. And even if one administration is willing to enforce the regulations, a successor may be more interested in serving the interests of the cable providers than the people. The answer here is competition in Internet service delivery, which not coincidentally appears to be the direction some of the Obama transition team seem to be thinking.
Net Neutrality describes a desired outcome, it is not a policy in itself. How should the US govt enable citizens to gain the same access to cheap, high speed broadband that Europeans have enjoyed for years?"Link to Original Source
writes "OASIS members have narrowly rejected the Extensible Resource Identifiers specification as an OASIS standard. To pass 15% of the membership must vote and there must be no more than 25% no votes. As Drummond Reed reports there was extensive lobbying in the final stages. The objections of the World Wide Web Consortium TAG were cited as the reason for the objection by many voting disapprove.
What has attracted rather less attention than it should, but certainly was a factor in one vote is the curious status of the XRI patent license. Instead of providing the normal license or open covenant to use the XRI specification in any way whatsoever, the patent is exclusively licensed to 'non-profit' XDI.org which has in turn sublicensed the rights to register XRI i-names and i-numbers to commercial entities. Cordance retaint the right to sue third parties for infringement. In other words, this is not free as in speech and you should expect to pay for the beer if i-names take off."Link to Original Source
writes "Intel has announced a test chip with 80 cores. The chip has a nominal processing capacity of over a teraflop. Whether the chip actually delivers that performance over a sustained interval on real processing problems is another question. Also unmentioned is how the issue of heat dissipation is dealt with. It is probably going to be a while before such chips are production.
This marks a major departure from tactics such as introducing more parallelism into the processor core and adding more cache memory that have been the norm since 64 mainstream processors reached 64 bits."