Arathon writes: "Apparently the International Trade Commission is beginning an investigation that could lead to the banning of hard drive imports from Western Digital, Seagate, and Toshiba, among others, on the grounds that they fundamentally violate patents held by Steven and Mary Reiber of California. The patent apparently has to do with "dissipative ceramic bonding tips", which are important components of the drives themselves.
Obviously, a ban would be unthinkable, and yet the ITC has 45 days to settle on a fixed date for the end of the investigation. If the patents are found to be violated, and the Reibers do not allow those patents to be bought or otherwise dealt with, the importation of almost all hard drives would actually be ceased."
Arathon writes: "Turns out that the amazing "$100" laptop designed by the "One Laptop Per Child" program isn't going to make it out the door for that price. CNN reports that the laptops are now expected to cost $188 apiece when they come out later this fall. This is expected to make the program's appeal potentially much smaller, since the developers were relying on the mind-bogglingly low-price to hook governments into the concept of buying laptops for their people. OLPC's spokesman guarantees that the price won't rise further, to "above $190". The price differential is being blamed on raw materials costs and currency fluctuation. Is this the end of the OLPC's newsworthiness, or should we continue to hope that it will make the difference that so many have said it will?"