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Communications

New Facebook Messaging System Announced 240

Mark Zuckerberg just held a presentation to unveil Facebook's "next generation messaging" system. He repeatedly drove home the idea that "this is not email," nor is it "an email killer." Their plan is to tie together multiple forms of communication — email, texts, social updates, etc. — and blend them into conversations. As users go about their days, interacting with a variety of devices, the communication method automatically updates to whatever is appropriate at the time. If a user receives an email while he's at a desktop, browsing Facebook, it will bring up the message in a Facebook chat window. If the user is browsing on a smartphone, it will bring up the message there, instead. If it's a dumbphone, then a text message can be sent. Another central feature is the idea that conversation histories from multiple sources and different forms of communication can be integrated through Facebook, so that you no longer have to separately root through IM logs, SMS logs, old emails, etc., to see old correspondence. (Users will have the ability to delete these, should they desire.) The last major feature they mentioned is what they call the "social" inbox, which is based on whitelisting. Users will be able to set up primary inboxes which only display communications they definitely want to see, while leaving low-priority messages, spam, and all the other noise typical to email in an inbox they check less frequently. The new system will be rolled out slowly over the next few months.
Facebook

Google Asks Users To Complain Against Facebook 218

dkd903 writes "A kind of war has been going on recently between Facebook and Google over a contact export issue. First, Google blocked Facebook access to the Gmail contacts API. To this, Facebook responded back with a new method to get Gmail contacts of a user (the download contacts option). And now Google has slapped back again at Facebook and asks users indirectly to file a data protectionism complaint against Facebook. When a Facebook user clicks on the Download Your Contacts button on the 'Facebook import contact via Gmail' page, the user is then redirected to a new page on Google's server, which looks something like this..." Can I just say that watching this is absolutely hysterical?
X

Ubuntu Dumps X For Unity On Wayland 640

An anonymous reader writes "Canonical and Ubuntu founder Mark Shuttleworth has announced that Ubuntu will move away from the traditional X.org display environment to Wayland — a more modern alternative. The move means there is now little reason for GNOME developers to recommend Ubuntu as an operating system. Shuttleworth said, 'We're confident we’ll be able to retain the ability to run X applications in a compatibility mode, so this is not a transition that needs to reset the world of desktop free software. Nor is it a transition everyone needs to make at the same time: for the same reason we'll keep investing in the 2D experience on Ubuntu despite also believing that Unity, with all its GL dependencies, is the best interface for the desktop. We'll help GNOME and KDE with the transition, there's no reason for them not to be there on day one either.'"

Comment Re:Audio Compression (Score 1) 636

I used to work at a TV station and we never did anything to alter the sound of any of the programming or commercials.

This is our complaint exactly. We would very much like you to alter the sound of the programming or commercials to reduce the volume. If you did this, we might actually let the commercials play without muting the system.

Comment Re:I'd much rather... (Score 1) 636

in my opinion the broadcasters are responsible here, precisely because they are blindly (err, deafly) just running the tapes at the standard levels. sure, solving this problem flawlessly would require a lot of volume-monitoring technology and setting a standard average volume level and such. but they've failed to even attempt solve this glaring, decades-old problem with something as crude as "reduce all advertisements in volume by 6 dB for six weeks and see how it goes" or "return advertisements for remastering when they exceed a certain RMS volume". i've given up on the broadcasters because the ads are now so much louder than the programming that i fear they will damage my equipment -- i can't risk even seeing one ad because i can't afford to replace my speakers just because a bunch of antisocial assholes want to sell some more garbage to idiots.

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