ron-l-j writes: The last few months a digital inheritance idea has been floating around in my head, and I am sure the thought has crossed your mind as well.With Google talking about the inactive account program it made me wonder, will my children get my iTunes, and amazon movies? I have plenty of mp4 movies on my server that will just set itself to admin with no password after I do not log in within a 6 month time frame.
But what about the millions of dollars spent on digital content? We all know your favorite DVD will become scratched, and will be worthless after a few years. But the possibility of your purchases lasting a long time is more relevant today with more reliable storage. Will it be the case of my boring 2D movies being laughed at by my kids and their 3D holographic displays? I do have a collection of written material, photos, home video, and a database I would like my descendants to have access to.
I can see the lawyers now grabbing for a fee, and the government digging in to tax your digital life in an inheritance tax.
Amit Agarwal writes: "In their annual list of Top 25 blogs, the TIME magazine has added Slashdot to the category of most overrated blogs. The review says — Reading Slashdot these days is like visiting the IT guy at work. He's infuriatingly smug and cares passionately about stuff you don't care about, and views your lack of interest as further confirmation of his intellectual superiority."
north.coaster writes: New Scientist reports that a National Security Space Office led study group has released a proposal calling for the use of earth orbiting satellites to produce power that would be beamed down to earth using microwaves or a laser, which would be collected in antennas on the ground and then converted to electricity. While solar power satellites have been discussed for many years, what is different this time is the idea that this could replace the need to transport fuel into war zones and other dangerous places, saving both lives and money. This latest proposal may jump start efforts to make this concept a reality.
johannacw writes: "Do you think it's a good idea to allow end-users to buy their own PCs, laptops, PDAs and other devices? Some companies are taking steps in this direction, and IT is preparing for employee-owned devices by adopting virtualization and baseline PC requirements to help keep up with support demands in a less standardized world."
from the wise-man-in-multiple-ways dept.
doom writes "You've probably already heard that the Nobel Prize for Economics was given to three gents who were working on advances in mechanism design theory. What you may not have heard is what one of those recipients was using that theory to study: 'One recent subject of Professor Maskin's wide-ranging research has been on the value of software patents. He determined that software was a market where innovations tended to be sequential, in that they were built closely on the work of predecessors, and innovators could take many different paths to the same goal. In such markets, he said, patents might serve as a wall that inhibited innovation rather than stimulating progress.' Here's one of Maskin's papers on the subject: Sequential Innovation, Patents, limitation (pdf).