Twitter has proven to be a great place to post your feelings in public, but it's also proven to be a bit of a haven for trolls and their kin. Short of spamming, it's hard to actually get banned from Twitter, and so the most powerful weapon Twitter users have had against griefers has been the block. Blocking prevents a signed-in user from seeing your posts and prevents you from ever seeing anything from them. However, it was very limited in power, as all anyone ever had to do to see your stuff was sign out. And, if they wanted to RT something you'd posted, all that required was a copy and paste.
In a seeming acknowledgment of that limited power,
The initial reasoning was that many users were wary of openly blocking someone, as in some cases it would only make the harassment intensify. The revision of functionality meant that the person who was blocked would, effectively, never know that you couldn't see their stuff. However, that message wasn't particularly well broadcasted and, frankly, it would have been best if Twitter simply maintained access to the old block function if users really wanted it. Regardless, kudos to the company for reacting so quickly. Now, let's move along.
Spotify on mobile goes free, but only if you're willing to give up control
Hard-core Spotify users (like yours truly) have long felt comfortable spending $10 monthly for the privilege of listening to music through mobile devices and, more importantly for some, downloading music for offline playback. But, the most popular services are usually the free ones, and Spotify has finally
NPD dishes official next-gen console sales
Last week Sony indicated it had moved past 2 million PS4 sales worldwide, and this week Microsoft said the same about its Xbox One. But, the NPD finally weighed in with the official numbers. The PS4 had the edge in overall sales with 2.1 million to the Xbox One's 2 million -- unsurprising since Sony's system launched a week earlier. Microsoft's console actually sold at a higher rate, of 101,000 per day -- and again we need to caveat that the PS4 came out of the gate in fewer countries. Suffice it to say it's way, way too early to pick a winner in this fight, but it sure is fun trying.
Angry Birds Go! racing into freemium purgatory
Angry Birds, certainly the most iconic mobile game of all time, has spawned a franchise ranging from novelty soaps to board games. Rovio, the series developer, has released the latest iteration:This time, those flightless fowl strap into vehicles and race themselves straight into the world of Mario Kart. The game, by all accounts, is very fun to play and very polished, but is killed by endless prompts that demand you buy things. The game will harass you endlessly to spend money, the kind of experience that has proven remarkably successful at sucking all the fun out of video games. Congratulations to Rovio for diving in to the same trap.
Yahoo Mail suffers multiday outage
In other exclamation-point-related news,
Another choice in the world of wireless charging
Don't like the look of Powermats? Find the Qi charging standard too difficult to pronounce? Then you're probably not going to like yet another player who has just entered the wireless charging scrum.is named as a play on the resonance charging technology that it uses, which offers some significant improvements over the inductive and contact-based competition. For one thing, multiple devices can charge on a single charging pad. And, perhaps more importantly, it has a slight amount of range, meaning that chargers could be installed beneath laminate surfaces and still function. As of now no devices have been announced that will pack Rezence support, but having a Qualcomm product manager acting as chairman of the committee that developed the standard should certainly help in that regard.
Steve Mollenkopf is Qualcomm's new CEO
Speaking of Qualcomm, the company has just. Steven Mollenkopf, the company's former COO, was to be a leading candidate in the list of potential candidates for Microsoft's next CEO. But, less than a day later the man was confirmed as the successor to Qualcomm's current CEO, Dr. Paul Jacobs. Did Qualcomm speed up negotiations to keep him in San Diego? Was the earlier report a ruse to ensure him a bigger signing bonus? The world may never know.
CNET turns 100, doesn't look a day over 20
Finally this week I want to point your attention to the new