quarterbuck writes: Google is shutting down its 10 year old social network Orkut . It was more popular outside the US than in US and was at a point the most popular website in India and Brazil. By 2012 Facebook had overtaken Orkut pretty much everywhere.
Google is allowing the users to take their data out, but the discussions are being shut down.
quarterbuck writes: Many politicians, especially in Europe, have used the idea that economic growth is impeded by debt levels above 90% of GDP to justify austerity measures. The academic justification came from a paper and a book by Kenneth Rogoff and Carmen Reinhart. Now researchers at U Mass at Amherst have refuted the study — they find that not only was the data tainted by bad statistics, it also had an Excel error . Apparently when averaging a few GDP numbers in an excel sheet, they did not drag down the cell ranges down properly, excluding Belgium.
The supporting website for the book "This time it is different" has lots of financial information if a reader might want to replicate some of the results.
quarterbuck writes: The Federal Government , Carmen Ortiz and Special Agent Vincent Kelly sued Russ Caswell of Massachusetts in a civil forfeiture case to seize his motel and home. They claimed that since the Motel was connected to drug cases, it could be seized.The judge rejected the case, saying that the prosecutors did not prove that the hotel was subject to forfeiture,and that Caswell is an innocent owner of the property. The judge found that many of the drug cases alleged to have happened were never prosecuted, Caswell did co-operate with police when needed, took reasonable action to prevent crime and that punishing Caswell did not hurt the crime-doers. Wall Street Journal has been covering this story for a while , so has the business and local news . Darpana Sheth for libertarian oriented Institute of Justice (pro-bono) and Schlossberg, LLC defended Caswell.
quarterbuck writes: "California has a law called "California Resale Royalties Act" which requires artists to be paid a 5% cut of resold art, iff the artwork appreciates in price on resale.
Now lawyers are suing auction houses to disclose the names and addresses of both buyers and sellers, so that they can be sued if either are based in California."
quarterbuck writes: The online group Anonymous, through its arm AnonAnalytics has accused a Hong Kong listed company Choada of fraud.
Financial times (http://www.ft.com/cms/s/2/3434c82a-e8c5-11e0-902c-00144feab49a.html#ixzz1ZGZXijFZ) has a story regarding recent allegations of fraud against this company and mentions another fraud at an unrelated agricultural company called Sino Forest.
quarterbuck writes: Janet Guyon writing on "How I got there" has an interview with John Sculley. Those who remember Apple Lore would remember Sculley as the guy who Steve Jobs hired by saying "You can stay at Pepsi and sell sugar water or come with me and change the world" but then ended up firing Steve Jobs. He explains that one thing he probably did wrong was to run Apple like Pepsi, ie fighting a computer war with IBM like the Cola wars.
quarterbuck writes: HTC has sued Apple in Delaware accusing Apple of patent infringement. The twist is that it is using patents it received from Google, which in turn were brought from Palm and Motorola
quarterbuck writes: Bloomberg has a story on Google's acquisition of Motorola and quotes IP lawyers who claim that 18 patents dating to 1994 are probably what Google is after. These patents cover technology essential to the mobile-device industry, including location services, antenna designs, e-mail transmission, touch- screen motions, software-application management and third- generation wireless.
quarterbuck writes: When copyright law was revised in the mid-1970s, musicians, like creators of other works of art, were granted “termination rights,” which allow them to regain control of their work after 35 years, so long as they apply at least two years in advance. Recordings from 1978 are the first to fall under the purview of the law, but in a matter of months, hits from 1979, like “The Long Run” by the Eagles and “Bad Girls” by Donna Summer, will be in the same situation
quarterbuck writes: Fortune magazine recently ran a story (pay walled) regarding Apple University, Apple's internal education program. They seem to have hired an ex-Yale Dean to write case studies on how Jobs runs Apple . The aim is to devolve authority down from Jobs while ensuring that everyone at Apple can make decisions like Steve Jobs
Other publications have the same story too.
quarterbuck writes: Journal has a review of the Telikin, an all-in-one desktop, with a touch screen, that starts at $699 and comes from a small Philadelphia-area start-up called Venture 3 Systems.
It is much simplified (no powerpoint editing for eg.) and the hardware is thought through (two microphones), but the review is claiming that the software is still buggy.
quarterbuck writes: "I have been traveling around a lot, so I currently have a GSM phone which I use through T-Mobile. But recently T-mobile stopped offering their data plans on unlocked phones (now only for their locked Sidekick phones). I am trying to find out the cheapest data capable plan. I would prefer no/limited lock-in since I travel a lot (and hate the idea of linking my phone to the plan). I would also like to be able to hack/add apps to my phone, so a Linux/Windows Mobile/Blackberry device support would be nice. I found a story online (I am not affiliated with them) and the story, while true seems outdated.
So far I have checked out Boost Mobile — AFAIK, the cheapest, but has limited support for phones.For $50 I can get unlimited data+voice but the only phone that meets my specs is Blackberry 865i. The data is also not particularly fast.
T-mobile stopped offering prepaid internet.
Verizon has data plans, but they are infamous for their Verizon Math and have no cheap unlimited plans.
Any other suggestions ?"