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Submission + - Lessig Launches a SuperPAC to End all SuperPACs (mayone.us)

An anonymous reader writes: Lawrence Lessig has announced plans to kickstart a SuperPAC big enough to make it possible to win a Congress committed to fundamental reform by 2016.

Submission + - MIT students to receive $100 in Bitcoin (networkworld.com)

smaxp writes: Bitcoin's openness is a great tech challenge to MIT students to build applications that use Bitcoin

The MIT Bitcoin Club is handing out $100 in the cryptocurrenty to MIT undergrads next September. The club’s co-founder Jeremy Rubin gave a pretty convincing reason for the giveaway:

"Giving students access to cryptocurrencies is analogous to providing them with internet access at the dawn of the internet era."


Submission + - MIT students to receive $100 in Bitcoin (networkworld.com)

colinneagle writes: The MIT Bitcoin Club is handing out $100 in the cryptocurrenty to MIT undergrads next September. The club’s co-founder Jeremy Rubin gave a pretty convincing reason for the giveaway:

"Giving students access to cryptocurrencies is analogous to providing them with internet access at the dawn of the internet era."

That gets at the main point, which is to encourage the students to test the technology and come up with applications for it. Even with the Mt. Gox debacle and the other issues surrounding Bitcoin's stability and value, its potential as a technological platform remains massive.

Submission + - How emerging markets contributed to Apple's strong quarter (networkworld.com)

smaxp writes: Apple’s international sales made up 66% of Apple’s revenues. Thanks to the company’s performance in international markets, it offset market share losses in the U.S. and grew 7 % overall.

Apple exceeded expectations measured along every axis except new products. Boldly increasing dividends and share buybacks and splitting the stock while easily beating Wall Street’s estimates, Tim Cook made a clear statement that, despite prevailing opinion, Apple was not in crisis because it has not introduced a new product category since the iPad in 2010.

Submission + - Linux Foundation responds to Heartbleed with Core Infrastructure Initiative (networkworld.com)

smaxp writes: This is a promising development, though it should be categorized as “says easy does hard.” All of these companies, especially Facebook, Google, IBM, Intel, and Microsoft, really understand open source software as well as anyone on the planet.

But more than money, these companies will have to dedicate some of their best people, not just for a conference, but dedicate them to monitoring and measuring existing large-scale open source projects and look for the tips of the icebergs of new open source projects that have become critical components to internet infrastructure.

Submission + - Mobile apps making Do-Not-Call Act obsolete (networkworld.com)

smaxp writes: It once took an act of Congress to block unwanted calls, now it just takes a smartphone app.

One reason people block calls is that the options available for communicating have exploded beyond telephone calls, text messages, and email. Social media, messaging apps like Line and Whats App, video calls using Skype or Google Hangouts, all offer a comparatively rich explanation of the relationship and the context of the communications.

Submission + - Google Glass gets a makeover before reintroducing itself to the public (networkworld.com)

smaxp writes: If yesterday's public sale of Google Glass was news to you, you're probably not the droids Google is looking for.

There is a subculture of wearable technology enthusiasts and developers that has been buying Glass, following Glass, chasing invitations to buy Glass, and tracking Glass’s developments on RSS feeds and Google Plus. This group has been abuzz with the news of the public sale of Glass for more than a month.

So if you just learned of today’s public sale of Glass and plan to buy one, you fit into one of two categories: you are either a wearable technology enthusiast/software developer who has been cut off from the world without an internet connection for the last month, or you’re rich enough that you don’t have to think twice about a $1,500 impulse buy to something that you don’t know much about. Both are pretty small groups. Google’s announcement of the public sale of Glass and last night’s release of new Glass features and an upgrade to Android KitKat is big news for the wearable community.

Submission + - Malaysia Air 370: This is how we make sure we never lose a plane again (qz.com)

smaxp writes: Malaysia Air flight 370s disappearance is more disturbing to the public than previous airline disasters because the all-pervasive smartphone has created a consumer expectation for accurate location. If a consumer can instantly know his or her exact location and that of family members, friends and even pets on a smartphone map, why is the location of Malaysia Air 370 still a mystery?

The military version of blackboxes called Automatic Deployable Flight Recorders (ADFR) do the same job as those used in civil aircraft with one major difference: on impact the ADFR separates from the aircraft. Mounted flush into the skin of the aircraft’s tail, the ADFR is an airfoil. Upon release, it enters the aircraft’s slipstream, flying it away from the crash. It its buoyant, so should it land in water, it will float.

Submission + - Android malware is rare, but some choose it deliberately (networkworld.com)

smaxp writes: Google just released its latest numbers of potentially harmful apps (PHA) installed on Android devices. Based on data from 4 billion app installations, only 0.18% of users go forward with an app installation after being warned that it may be insecure, according to Google. Interestingly, though, that 0.18% includes some very Android-savvy users.

Some people actually embrace PHAs, and their app installs are included in the 0.18% of PHAs. The only way to bypass a locked bootloader or install a custom Android ROM like Cyanogenmod is with a root exploit, which will be detected as a PHA. There are many reasons to run a root exploit on one’s own Android device.

Submission + - Apple, Google, and Amazon's quest for one remote control is futile (qz.com)

smaxp writes: If the cable and satellite live television providers were to comment on the latest Amazon Fire TV or reports of the new Google Android and Apple TVs, it would likely be in the voice and character of Charlton Heston:

We will give up our remotes when they are pried from our cold dead hands.

Amazon’s Fire TV and the rumored Google Android and Apple TVs excite and then disappoint. At first glance, it looks like cable and satellite television are about to be outflanked and the eternal struggle with the TV remote and set-top box will be solved with an intuitive interface to search both live television and archival content from streamed online video companies such as Netflix.

Sadly, it isn’t so.

Submission + - Microsoft scores against Android by relinquishing control of Windows (networkworld.com)

smaxp writes: When the mobile bell finally rang at Microsoft, like a punch-drunk fighter, Ballmer came into the ring punching the air as he tried to control the mobile phone market like the company once did desktops. Now, new CEO Satya Nadella has entered the ring and dealt a stunning blow to Android, making Windows free to smartphone OEMs.

Submission + - Apple's attention problem (networkworld.com)

smaxp writes: The iPhone has been a fashion statement for years, but with market share beginning to slide, Apple needs to re-capture consumers' attention,

Tim Cook summed up Apple’s definition of innovation in an interview with NBC’s Brian Williams a little over a year ago:

            "Our whole role in life is to give you something you didn’t know you wanted. And then once you get it,
            you can’t imagine your life without it"

But Apple has not done this in a long time – not since January 27, 2010, when it first introduced the iPad. Introducing an innovative new product category generates a wave of public attention that lifts sales of other product categories. A fashion-conscious consumer in the market for a new smartphone is more likely to consider paying a premium for an iPhone if the buzz on social media and in the press is propagating Apple’s latest new and innovative product category.

Submission + - China has a market to accommodate Apple's 4G iPad (networkworld.com)

smaxp writes: In China, Apple's premium brand strategy is targeted at the same wealthy buyers of Este Lauder cosmetics, BMW cars and Burberry clothing.

The least-expensive iPad mini announced yesterday is more than a quarter of this average Chinese family annual income.

But in the big, wealthy cities, Apple will compete very effectively. Apple accounts for just 7% of market share in China, as reported by IDC, but in the other China, the big cities, its market share is closer to 30%.

Submission + - China has a market to accommodate Apple's 4G iPad (networkworld.com)

Steve Patterson writes: The average family income in China is about $2,100 per year, according to a New York Times report. The least-expensive iPad mini announced yesterday for the market in China is more than a quarter of this average family income.

In China, Apple's premium brand strategy is targeted at the same wealthy buyers of Este Lauder cosmetics, BMW cars and Burberry clothing. In the big, wealthy cities, Apple still can compete very effectively with cheaper Android. Apple accounts for just 7% of market share in China, as reported by IDC, but in the other China, the big wealth cities, its market share is closer to 30%.

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