Tech News Today 524

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Tech News Today
Episode 524

Tech News Today 524: The Quick Recrap

What Microsoft thought was so important, Google wags fingers at governments, leaks on the Xbox 720, and more.

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  • US government takedown requests more than triple in 12 months, says Google Report
  • Google says US government takedown requests have doubled in last six months
  • Google Blog post
  • Report itself
  • Google Transparency Report updated to show data showing government requests to remove blog posts or videos or hand over user information made from July to December 2011.
    • US court and governmetn requests doubled over the past 6 months. (from 92 to 187 was 54 year over year)
    • Google did not comply with a request from Passport Canada objecting to a video of a Canadian urinating on a passport
    • US made 6,321 requests for user data Google complied 93% of the time
    • UK had the higest number of requests per capita at 23 per million citizens (US at 20 pmc)
    • Jordan, Bolivia and the Czech Republic made their first requests. Hooray!
    • Google says it stands up for the rights of its users and only complies if the request conforms with local laws
    • But should Google be in that judgemental position?
    • What if other companies are not so civic-minded, or Google changes its ways?
  • Why we believe most of the massive Xbox roadmap rumor
  • Leaked document points to $299 "Xbox 720" for 2013
    • Kinect v2: would have better voice recognition, use stereo imaging for better accuracy, track up to four players and better cameras. The Kinect 2 may be a two separate camera units.
    • Kinect glasses (codenamed Fortaleza) aimed for 2014 - connects to a smartphone synced with the 720 over Wi-Fi will offer ""ambient experiences"" and provide ""seamless integration of the digital world with the physical world."" Would use Xbox Live to provide real time info on people, places and things.
    • 720 Spec wise: 6-8 2Ghz ARM/x86 cores, 2 add'l ARM/x86 cores for the OS, 3 PowerPC cores for backwards compatibility - suggests base hardware with multiple configurations.
    • 2015 evolution: MS moves to cloud rendering w/ a microconsole
    • Misc: Whole home DVR, Wireless tech: WiMax and HSDPA
    • Target date of 2013 holiday season with price of $299 (bundle includes new Kinect hardware)
  • Mozilla working on iPad mobile browser to challenge Safari
  • Mozilla takes aim at the iPad browser market with its 'Junior' prototype
    • Mozilla's iPad browser called "Junior"
    • Address bar gets tossed out, two buttons - one on either side of the screen. back and plus button. (In the video, one of the presenters says URL field not necessary for casual browsing), buttons are pullable to bring reload, forward buttons - other side share and print
    • full screen browsing
    • didn't want to go to a gesture based system
    • built in multi-user support
    • speed dial (guy said he made speed dial for opera), redone version and went with logos (looks a bit like the AppleTV UI). The website would have to define a logo/favicon replacement. (calls it favicon 2)
    • "We wanted to look into how we could reinvent the browser for a new form factor," - Alex Limi, Product designer at Firefox
  • OPA: iOS And Android Level In U.S. Tablet Market, Penetration 47% By 2013, $2.6B Spent On Apps In 2012
  • Survey from OPA
  • Online Publishers Association study says 52% of US own iPad while 51% own Android, most of that Kindle Fire
    • Kindle Fire accounts for 28% of all tablets, close to the iPad 2 (31%) and ahead of iPad 3 (8%).
    • tablet owners use their devices for 13.9 hours per week on average, with 74 percent using it daily
    • by 2013, it says 47 percent of consumers will own a tablet, up from a mere 11 percent in 2011
    • Ingrid Luinden at TechCrunch points out: It's taken 5 years since the 1st iPhone for the majority of US to own a smart phone
    • online survey of 2,540 internet users between the ages of 8 and 64. It notes that the sample was matched to the U.S. Census with regard to age and gender, March 19-26 survey period.
  • FunnyJunk's lawyer personally sues The Oatmeal creator
  • FunnyJunk's lawyer gave money to The Oatmeal's fundraiser
  • Angry "Internet lawyer" sues The Oatmeal, bears, and cancer research
  • Oatmeal creator Matthew Inman's fight against Funny Junk is not over
    • RECAP: Inman mad at how Funny Junk handled the posting of Otameal comics to its site, FunnyJunk sent a threatening letter claiming defamation and asking for $20,000 dmaages, Inman created Operation "Bear Love Good/Cancer Bad" to raise $20K for charity and raised much more
    • NOW: Friday FunnyJunk lawyer Charles Carreon filed a lawsuit (with himself as plaintiff) in San Francisco Federal Court naming Matthew Inman (aka "The Oatmeal"), the Indiegogo website Inman used to raise the money, and Inman's two charities of choice, the National Wildlife Federation and the American Cancer Society. Did we mention that Carreon sued 100 anonymous "Does" in the same suit, too?
    • In the filing he revealed he had contributed to the fund, giving him styanding as a contributor.
    • Carreon demands that Indiegogo, which provided the fundraising platform, not get any money and that, further, none be paid out to Inman.
    • Claims the charities "have failed to perform their statutory duty to exercise authority over the Bear Love campaign"
    • Inman's fundraiser was conducted in violation of the California law pertaining to "commercial fundraisers," that someone incited by Inman created a fake Twitter account posing as Carreon, and that Inman incited "cyber-vandalism" again Carreon with the "Bear Love campaign."

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"What's up TNT Crew,

I was listening to your report a few days ago in which you mentioned Yelp's problems with Google scraping their results as well as their partnerships with Apple and Bing, and I couldn't help but notice that Yelp relies on Google Maps for their Mapping feature on the web as well as mobile.

With their newly minted partnerships, I wouldn't be surprised if Yelp starts using Bing Maps or Apple Maps in their mapping feature.

What are your thoughts?

-Chris"


"Hi, I have something to add to the discussion on TNT June 15 about people being annoyed with Dropbox removing the Public folder.

I make websites and the Public folder has proven invaluable for super simple web hosting. I use it to test designs on different computers and iPad/iPhone and this won't work as far as I can tell with the new ""custom"" public folders.

I won't have to worry about this but for new users it's definitely one less awesome feature.

ps. An alternative solution has luckily been provided by http://get.drapache.com/ ds.

Thanks for an awesome show!

-- Robin Andeer"


"Hi TNT crew,

Just to explain the difference between the old Dropbox public folder and their new model. The old model acts like web space; files load directly into a browser and any dependencies (for examples images on a web page) are fetched too. The new model acts like a file repository; files are not served 'as is' but wrapped in a preview page with a link to download the original, and dependencies must be downloaded separately.

Although I'm not a heavy user of the public folder, I'll admit it can be handy sometimes. For example the other day I needed to assess the performance of some WebGL code; copying the HTML and JavaScript to my public folder I emailed the link to friends and asked them to report back on the frame rates they got. As far as I can tell the new model doesn't support these kinds of ad hoc web pages, so under the new model I'd need to zip the page up and have recipients download and unpack it to run locally (which begs the question why I would use Dropbox at all -- why not just attach the zip file to the email?)

Sure there are other ways of putting files up on the web quickly, but none of them as convenient. In a world being ever more seamlessly integrated into 'The Cloud', it seems odd that DropBox are shifting towards a sharing model that requires an explicit download step. Perhaps their ad hoc web space was being abused?

Simon Liverpool UK"

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  • Edited by: Jeff
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