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Facebook Wants to Skip the Off-Site Links, Host News Content Directly 19

Posted by timothy
from the a-few-seconds-a-few-seconds-there dept.
The Wall Street Journal, in a report also cited by The Next Web and others, reports that Facebook is to soon begin acting not just as a conduit for news links pasted onto users' timelines (and leading to articles hosted elsewhere) but also as a host for the articles themselves. From the WSJ article: To woo publishers, Facebook is offering to change its traditional revenue-sharing model. In one of the models under consideration, publishers would keep all of the revenue from ads they sell on Facebook-hosted news sites, the people familiar with the matter said. If Facebook sells the advertisement, it would keep roughly 30% of the revenue, as it does in many other cases. Another motivation for Facebook to give up some revenue: It hopes the faster-loading content will encourage users to spend more time on its network. It is unclear what format the ads might take, or if publishers will be able to place or measure the ads they sell within Facebook. It seems likely Facebook would want publishers to use its own advertising-technology products, such as Atlas and LiveRail, as opposed to those offered by rivals such as Google Inc.

Comment: Re:2kW isn't enough power for a home (Score 1) 502

by Areyoukiddingme (#49601465) Attached to: Tesla Announces Home Battery System

With some extensive re-wiring of the power panel to move high-load devices (AC, washer/dryer, dishwasher, possibly even the gas furnace blower motor) to another panel, the 10kW unit MIGHT be useful to keep the fridge and lights going during a short-term power outage.

Why would you do that? Every single one of those things has an off switch. In all but extraordinarily rare cases, use of every one of those things is discretionary. You don't need to rewire your panel in order to keep the house running during quite a long power outage. Just don't use heavy draw appliances. If you are affluent enough to buy one or more of these battery packs in the first place, you can certainly afford to buy a few paper plates and an extra pair of underwear, if it comes to that.

Yeah, you're probably not going to be an early adopter, if you don't have solar panels already, if you don't have an electric car already, if you're not subject to substantially high differential energy pricing, and if you live in a region with a better-than-average grid maintenance organization. But the price will only come down once the gigafactory comes online. It's very likely that these packs will get cheap enough to fit in a discretionary budget just for rare convenience. My existing UPSes certainly fall into that category. You may already have a few for the same reason. It's just a somewhat bigger UPS, when all those other conditions apply.

Regardless of your individual situation, it's a gamechanging device for the vast majority of the world.

Comment: Re:pretty much the opposite here (Score 1) 17

by Qzukk (#49601035) Attached to: When did Net Neutrality change?

Good question. The main problem with all of these is proof. How do you determine intent of a dropped packet? Was it congestion, a hardware failure, or did the ISP have it in for that packet specifically? The guy screaming "I'm gonna kill you!" is the top suspect when someone turns up dead, but the cops still have to prove he did it.

When Comcast was using Sandvine Comcast denied, denied, denied that they were doing anything to degrade their users' internet experience. It took the EFF and a massive coordinated traffic logging effort to prove that Comcast was lying about intentionally disabling Lotus Notes (and BitTorrent) connections.

a costlier service

There is very little technical reason for a byte of amazon to cost more than a byte of wikipedia. Once those packets reach the backbone networks (a process that Amazon and Wikipedia both pay for through their ISPs) they're essentially identical, except in the fact that Amazon has more money and they have more to lose if something were to happen to that packet, and that would be a real shame.

The original plan was simply "neutrality". All bytes are equal. More bytes can cost more money, but those additional bytes are equal too.

And that's where it started falling apart. Bytes delivered by copper all cost the same, bytes delivered by fiber all cost the same, bytes delivered by avian carrier all cost the same. Bytes delivered wirelessly... well, they cost the same too but some major neutrality players were doing deals with telcos to provide some services free on phones. Which was more important to them, neutrality? Or getting wikipedia to the mobile masses with no data charges? Well, as long as the net was mostly neutral (except when it suited them) it's a good thing, right? But hypocrisy is the moral rot, and rot spreads quickly.

Personally, I have two horses in this race: in my personal life I'm an internet user, at work I develop web applications. I had my experience with value-subtracted ISPs years ago. Before Time Warner traded an agreement not to compete here with Comcast for an agreement from Comcast not to compete elsewhere, one of our customers had Time Warner Cable at their office. One day I get an angry call from them that we're down. I check the status of our servers and say "no, we're up" and they insist we're down and I ask them if we're down why are they the only customer calling me. They insist. I do a traceroute from the development server and everything looks fine to me. They continue to insist. I remote into their computer and sure enough, the application isn't loading. I open a ticket with our colocation facility to let them know that some routing is fucked up specifically between IPs A and B. It's closed: nothing wrong. I tell them to call their ISP. TWC insists its on our end. I roll my eyes and mirror their database on the development server and call it a day. Day 2: we're "down" again. Neither the main server nor the development server are reachable from that customer now. TWC insists its on our end. I set up a mirror on our mail server. Day 3: we're down again. We have a three-way call with TWC. TWC insists it's on our end. I tell them that every single one of our customers using DSL are having no problems at all and offer to pay the cancellation fee so our customer has internet that works. (By this time I had reviewed all of our server logs and discovered that they were literally our only user in the city coming from TWC, everyone else had DSL). Tier 2 support is on the phone in 15 seconds. Now, this is probably about a decade or so ago, so these are not the exact words used but I won't forget the general gist of it any time soon:

Tier2: We changed a setting in their router to allow them to access their "business application". Everything should be fine now
Qz: Thank you. For future reference if we have other customers on TWC what setting is this so we can make sure it's configured correctly and avoid this problem in the future?
Tier2: Oh, it's not a setting that the customer can change.

So, what is the intent of a setting that blocks access to an ISP user's commonly used websites?

Comment: Re:pretty much the opposite here (Score 1) 17

by Qzukk (#49597995) Attached to: When did Net Neutrality change?

by telling carriers that they can't charge more for premium levels of service

Close.

The original plan was to tell carriers that they can't make Vonage and Skype a premium level service (add the voip package for only $15/mo!) to prevent them from competing with their phone service (only $9.99!). Or make Netflix an unusable service to stop customers from cutting cable. Or make browsing Amazon difficult because Barnes & Noble paid them to. Or sell 90% of the bandwidth they sold to me to their "fast lane" partners, while the sites I actually want to see get the last 10% of the bandwidth I paid for.

Much like the Occupy Movement, nobody took control to keep the message on point and eventually the whole thing devolved into a flaming mess, helped along by the telcos themselves spouting bullshit about how network neutrality meant you couldn't pay more for faster internet.

Comment: Re:I'm having a hard time seeing the problem (Score 1) 81

by Qzukk (#49596477) Attached to: American Psychological Association Hit With New Torture Allegations

is your definition of that due to your political positions or is it a moral absolute?

Actually, it's pretty easy to decide if something is a moral absolute or not: If it's OK for everyone to do it then you can, if it's not OK for everyone to do it, then you Kant.

Patents

Patent Issued Covering Phone Notifications of Delivery Time and Invoice Quantity 59

Posted by Soulskill
from the i-should-patent-the-rubber-stamp dept.
eldavojohn writes: The staggering ingenuity of the U.S. Patent system has again been showcased by the EFF's analysis of recent patents. This week's patent and follow-up patent cover the futuristic innovative idea that when you order something, you can update your order and add additional amounts to your order while it's being processed. But wait, it gets even more innovative! You may one day be able to even to notify when you would like it delivered — on your phone! I know, you're busy wiping all that brain matter off your screen as your head seems to have exploded. Well, it turns out that inventor and patent holder Scott Horstemeyer (aka Eclipse IP, LLC of Delray Beach, FL) found no shortage of targets to go after with his new patents. It appears Tiger Fitness (and every other online retailer) was sending notices to customers about shipments. Did I mention Horstemeyer is a lawyer too? But not just a regular lawyer, a "SUPER lawyer" from the same firm that patented social networking in 2007, sued Uber for using location finding technologies in 2013 and sued Overstock.com as well as a small time shoe seller for using shipping notifications in 2014. A related article at Vox makes this case: "The primary problem with the patent system is, well, the patent system. The system makes it too easy to get broad, vague patents, and the litigation process is tilted too far toward plaintiffs. But because so many big companies make so much money off of this system, few in Congress are willing to consider broader reforms."

Comment: Re:Only doubles?! (Score 4, Insightful) 160

by jandrese (#49591199) Attached to: US Switches Air Traffic Control To New Computer System
Were you willing to guarantee your projects were defect free? The FAA is an excessively risk adverse organization. In some ways this is good, it's safer to fly from LA to London than it is to drive 10 miles from your house to the airport, even though you're in a metal tube traveling at nearly the speed of sound (so fast that human reaction times are effectively a moot point, once you see an obstacle in your way you are already dead) through all sorts of crazy weather and other challenges. The downside of this is that it is almost impossible to get them to replace a working system, even if the replacement is objectively better than the old one. One problem the FAA runs into on a regular basis is that tertiary technologies (like their network and comms systems) are constantly going obsolete and most of the vendors disappear and the only ones that remain jack their prices up into the stratosphere because they know they have a captive market.

Comment: Re:With REALLY Huge Fans... (Score 4, Funny) 278

by Qzukk (#49587025) Attached to: New Study Suggests Flying Is Greener Than Driving

Please direct your attention towards the front of the cabin as our flight attendants demonstrate the safety features of this craft.

In the event of pressure loss, an oxygen mask will drop from the overhead compartment. Please pull the mask to extend it completely and start the flow of oxygen, then place the mask over your nose and mouth and place the strap around your head to hold it in place. Put on your mask before helping children or others in need of assistance.

In the event of power loss, bicycle pedals will extend from the floor of the cabin. Please pedal as if our lives depended on it

A committee is a life form with six or more legs and no brain. -- Lazarus Long, "Time Enough For Love"

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