External hard drives are exceptionally popular peripheral devices, and it is exceptionally likely that you have one attached to your system given the recommendation to use Time Machine or some similar form of full-system backup. If you have a laptop, then it is additionally likely that these external drives you use will be the smaller 2.5-inch laptop drives that can be powered off the computer's USB or FireWire bus. While convenient, sometimes these drives can end up getting exceptionally hot with use, to the point where it may hurt or even burn if you hold the drive for … Read more
Album sales edge up 1 percent for just the first half of the year and suddenly it seems everybody in the music industry is giddy.
That's likely due to the fact that since 2004, all the news about sales has been bad, bad, bad. Consider that the music industry hasn't seen growth since George W. Bush was preparing for a second term as president, the Boston Red Sox were breaking the curse of the Bambino, and Mark Zuckerberg was founding Facebook.
Last Wednesday, research firm Nielsen SoundScan announced that the industry recorded a 1 percent increase in overall … Read more
The photos look more like some sort of modern archaeological exhibit, displaying motion controllers seemingly frozen in time from the last moment they were used.
It's no secret that the Wii has lost plenty of steam since its enormous 2006 launch, with most gamers complaining of gimmicky software and lack of compelling blockbuster third-party titles. It seems Nintendo has even given up on the console, too. At the company's 2011 E3 press conference only … Read more
Some of the country's largest Internet service providers are poised to leap into the antipiracy fight in a significant way.
After years of negotiations, a group of bandwidth providers that includes AT&T, Comcast, and Verizon are closer than ever to striking a deal with media and entertainment companies that would call for them to establish new and tougher punishments for customers who refuse to stop using their networks to pirate films, music and other intellectual property, multiple sources told CNET.
The sources cautioned that a final agreement has yet to be signed and that the partnership could … Read more
Happy day! Just a few weeks after Fortune, Sports Illustrated, and Time Magazine offered free iPad access to print subscribers, technology mag Wired has made the same move: if you subscribe to the print edition, you get current and back issues in the iPad app, no extra charge.
(Full disclosure: I'm an occasional contributor to Wired.)
That is, of course, the way magazine subscriptions should work. As publishers have discovered, subscribers feel insulted when you ask them to pay twice for content. I know I did.
With Wired, all I had to do was enter my subscriber number (which … Read more
Defense contractor L-3 Communications told employees that attackers used SecurID information stolen from RSA in March to target L-3, according to a report.
"L-3 Communications has been actively targeted with penetration attacks leveraging the compromised information," said an April 6 e-mail from an executive at L-3's Stratus Group to the group's 5,000 workers, which Wired published yesterday after receiving it from an unidentified source. The source reportedly said SecurID is used for access to an unclassified corporate network, but not classified networks.
It is unclear if the attack was successful. "Protecting our network is … Read more
As Amazon, Google, and Apple appear to be leading digital music in the direction of the cloud, it seems a good time to look back at some of the most influential online music services of the past.
Some people might argue that the modern digital music era started with the launch of iTunes. Others will say the birth of Napster kicked it off. The truth is two years before Napster launched in 2000, there were plenty of companies jockeying for dominance in online CD sales as well as downloads.
They were competing in nascent Internet radio or trying to create … Read more
A significant number of people are comfortable shopping and paying for items through their mobile devices, according to a new report from mobile media firm JiWire.
JiWire's latest Mobile Audience Insights Report (PDF) found that 79 percent of 5,000 people surveyed are OK paying online via their cell phones or tablets.
Though most of those polled are still making relatively small purchases (less than $100), 50 percent said they're comfortable spending more than $100 using a cell phone, while almost 20 percent said they're OK buying things worth more than $500.
Beyond paying for items, more consumers are also researching products via their mobile devices. JiWire found that 71 percent of those polled had researched future purchases on their phone or tablet before buying the item. Among those, 31 percent later bought the item in a store, 40 percent bought it online through a PC, and 20 percent bought it directly from their mobile device.… Read more
Fate smiled on Mark Gorton this week.
The founder of file-sharing company Lime Wire agreed on Thursday to pay $105 million to the Recording Industry Association of America to settle a 5-year-old copyright case. Sure, that's a lot, but consider that the settlement figure is equal to only 7 percent of the $1.4 billion the RIAA sought.
This is likely the final chapter for LimeWire, after 10 years in operation. The two sides agreed to settle a year to the day after U.S. District Judge Kimba Wood ruled that Gorton was liable for willful copyright infringement. Later, Wood ordered that the LimeWire peer-to-peer network be shut down. The financial agreement between Gorton and the labels came amid a jury trial to determine how much Gorton would have to pay in damages.
For fans of cheap, easy-to-obtain music, a few modest reasons for hope sprung up during the two-week-long damages trial.
Edgar Bronfman, CEO of Warner Music Group, one of the four largest record companies, said under oath that he supported the unbundling of music. You might be saying to yourself: "So what?" People have had access to unbundled music for a decade now, thanks to services like iTunes and, yes, LimeWire. All I can tell you is that there are plenty of decision makers at the labels who believe the industry won't recover until consumers are buying albums again. … Read more
Google grabbed the news spotlight this week as it hosted its annual I/O developer conference in San Francisco, but nothing shone as bright as its Chrome browser and the Chrome-based laptop the company introduced.
The Chromebook, touted as an always-on and always-connected computing experience, will be offered by Samsung and Acer starting June 15. The Samsung Chromebook will go for $429 in the U.S. for the Wi-Fi only version and $499 for the 3G version. Acer's Wi-Fi only Chromebook will cost $349.
The devices will be sold in the U.S. by Amazon.com and Best Buy. … Read more