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Saturday, February 28 2015 @ 09:58 AM CST
Friday, January 10 2014 @ 01:47 PM CST
Contributed by: Andy Updegrove
Ask someone of a certain age today how politically engaged they think young adults are, and they’re likely to respond “not very.” And in fact, the current U.S. political system is dysfunctional enough that someone of any age could be forgiven for simply turning away in disgust. Of course, that does no one any good. Or, as we used to say back in the 1960’s, “If you’re not part of the solution, then you’re part of the problem.”
All of which makes me happy to bring your attention to a Web site called Ideas Today, Politics Tomorrow, for which my daughter Nora is a staff writer. She writes primarily about foreign affairs, and like everyone else at the site (including the founders), she’s unpaid.
Tuesday, November 02 2010 @ 12:01 AM CDT
Contributed by: Andy Updegrove
Better run for cover . . . it's Election Day in the USA
Heaven help us all (all us Americans, anyway) — it's election time again. That means we've once again descended into a morass of partisan invective, not to mention lies, damn lies, and (of course) statistics. Except that this election year it seems that everyone is behaving even worse than last time, when everyone acted even worse than the time before, when, well, do you sense a trend here?
One hallmark of this year's political "discourse" (to abuse a term) has been the number of astonishingly angry and ill-informed accusations made by some candidates against their opponents (and others). Nothing unusual about that, sad to say. But what is different is the degree of acceptance, and even approval, exhibited by many voters that in earlier years might have rejected these candidates as well as their statements.
Monday, September 27 2010 @ 12:03 AM CDT
Contributed by: Andy Updegrove
Have you discovered The Alexandria Project?
Page through a major newspaper (remember newspapers?) today like the New York Times, and you’re likely to run into two enormous ads, one by Google (almost two full pages) and one by AOL (a full two pages). Leaving aside the irony of Google advertising in a form of media that it has almost competed out of existence, there’s something potentially transformative going on here that’s worth exploring.
Thursday, May 21 2009 @ 05:52 AM CDT
Contributed by: Andy Updegrove
Saturday, July 26 2008 @ 05:14 AM CDT
Contributed by: Andy Updegrove
Ever since Steve Jobs addressed the adoring crowds at this year's Apple Worldwide Developers Conference, the press, Apple fans - and most especially, Apple investors - have been concerned over the state of his health. The reasons are obvious: Five years ago, Jobs announced that he had been diagnosed, and cured, of a rare and happily less pernicious form of pancreatic cancer (the more common variety is almost never discovered before it has become incurable). And, when Jobs took the stage this June, he was far thinner and more haggard than he had ever looked before.
Since then, although rumors have swirled, Apple has refused to state whether or not Jobs has had a recurrence of his cancer - or disclose any meaningful details at all. Even on calls with securities analysts, Apple's response has only been that "Steve's health is a private matter."
Thus you might think that if you were a journalist, and you got a call from Steve Jobs yourself, giving you, and you only, the private scoop on the status of his health, you might feel like a pretty lucky guy, and take that news to the public within whatever constraints you had agreed to with the Apple CEO. Or would you write a different story entirely, and bury that news in the penultimate paragraph of a long story, and write at length instead about how stockholders were entitled to know the news that you had just buried?
With that lead in, you can guess which way New York Times business page columnist Joe Nocera called the coin toss. So here's the good news about Steve Jobs (up front), and the bad news about a Journalistic decision.
Quote of the Day
“Sometimes upholding constitutional ideas just isn't enough; sometimes you have to uphold the actual Constitution
-Excerpt from the dedication of a new "dark email" protocol to the NSA by PGP developer Ladar Levison See all Quotes
Latest NewsNew NIST Tools to Help Boost Wireless Channel Frequencies and CapacityNIST Techbeat
February 27, 2015 - Smartphones and tablets are everywhere, which is great for communications but a growing burden on wireless channels. Forecasted huge increases in mobile data traffic call for exponentially more channel capacity. Boosting bandwidth and capacity could speed downloads, improve service quality, and enable new applications like the Internet of Things connecting a multitude of devices.To help solve the wireless crowding conundrum and support the next generation of mobile technology—5G cellular—researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) are developing measurement tools for channels that are new for mobile communications and that could offer more than 1,000 times the bandwidth of today’s cell phone systems.... ...Full Story
HTTP/2 Will Make The Web ‘Faster And Safer’
Tech Week Europe February 27, 2015 - The Internet Engineering Steering Group (IESG) has approved the final standard for the HTTP/2 protocol, which could make browsing the Internet quicker and safer.
HTTP/2 is a major update to the Hypertext transfer protocol (HTTP), which is the foundation of data communication for the World Wide Web. The most widely used version of the standard, HTTP/1.1 was defined in 1999.
A working group has been developing HTTP/2 since 2012 and adopted Google’s SPDY protocol as an initial blueprint, with community feedback resulting in “substantial changes” to the standard, such as the compression scheme and the format of protocol.... ...Full Story
NIST Releases Update of Industrial Control Systems Security Guide for Final Public Review
NIST Techbeat February 26, 2015 - The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has issued proposed updates to its Guide to Industrial Control Systems (ICS) Security (NIST Special Publication 800-82) for final public review and comment....Downloaded more than 3 million times since its initial release in 2006, the ICS security guide advises on how to reduce the vulnerability of computer-controlled industrial systems to malicious attacks, equipment failures, errors, inadequate malware protection and other threats. Industrial control systems encompass the hardware and software that control equipment and the information technologies that gather and process data. They are commonly used in factories and by public utilities and other owners and operators of major infrastructure.
Most industrial control systems began as proprietary, stand-alone collections of hardware and software that were walled off from the rest of the world and isolated from most external threats. Today, widely available software applications, Internet-enabled devices and other nonproprietary IT offerings have been integrated into most such systems. This connectivity has delivered many benefits, but it also has increased the vulnerability of these systems.... ...Full Story
Big Data, Hadoop Standards Group: Who's In, Who's Missing?
Information Management February 25, 2015 - All eyes in the big data world are on the Open Data Platform -- a new association that strives to promote big data technologies and open source platforms like Hadoop. While promising and backed by big names like GE and IBM, the Open Data Platform initiative also lacks some key names....
Several industry giants and startups are driving the Open Data Platform group -- including Altiscale, Capgemini, CenturyLink, EMC, GE, Hortonworks, IBM, Infosys, Pivotal, SAS, Splunk, Teradata Verizon and VMware.
Still, some key names also are missing from effort.... ...Full Story
Security Standard Proposed for Bitcoin Exchanges and Wallets
Coindesk February 25, 2015 - A group composed of developers and security professionals has proposed a set of rules aimed at standardizing security protocols used by companies that handle or store digital currencies for their clients.
The proposal, created by the Cryptocurrency Certification Consortium (C4)...aims to provide an industry-level standard by which exchanges and wallet providers can operate.
The Cryptocurrency Security Standard (CCSS) draft proposal calls for 10 standardized approaches to key and seed generation, storage and usage, proof-of-reserve and security audits, among other areas. The framework consists of three levels per section, with each grade signifying a higher degree of security based on the proposed guidelines.... ...Full Story
How can you tell when the standards process isn't working? Perhaps the best indication is when a vendor decides it has to go to the time and cost (passed through to customers) of implementing two different standardized technologies in the same product. Hopefully this approach doesn't represent the future of wireless charging.
Samsung's Solution To Wireless Charging Fragmentation: Use All The Standards
Giga.om February 24, 2015 - In a recent post on one of its websites, Samsung talked about the recent history of wireless charging and how the company has been working on bringing this technology to market since late 2000. It finally did it in 2011 when the company brought wireless charging support for its Droid Charge smartphone....Because we're talking about a brand new type of technology, having multiple standards can hurt adoption, so Samsung, which is a member of both consortiums, has decided that it's best to just use both technologies in its upcoming devices. This way, a device such as the Galaxy S6 could be backwards compatible with both standards and all the accessories that support them. Soon, for example, Samsung's devices could be charged wirelessly either at McDonalds restaurants, which use Qi charging, or at Starbucks stores, which use PowerMat chargers.... ...Full Story
LTE standards group targeting mission-critical push-to-talk specifications for early 2016
UrgentComm February 23, 2015 - Officials for 3GPP, the standards body for LTE technology, recently said the organization plans to establish a standard for mission-critical-voice functionality over LTE early next year. That action could have significant impact on both 4G LTE initiatives and LMR plans for public-safety and critical-communications entities.
To help ensure that this aggressive timeline can be met, 3GPP has created a new working group—called SA6—specifically to tackle the challenges associated with mission-critical applications, with an initial focus on mission-critical voice, according to 3GPP officials.... ...Full Story
Call for Papers: Conference Theme: Interoperability, Intellectual Property and Standards
IEEE-SIIT.org February 23, 2015 - Interoperability has never been more important than it is today. It can be achieved by design, following the market or through standardization. How does intellectual property impact interoperability? How do these factors interact with standardization? IEEE-SIIT 2015 will explore these, and other, important questions.
IEEE-SIIT conferences aim at bringing together academia, government and industry participants engaged in standardization to foster the exchange of insights and views on all issues surrounding standards, standardization, interoperability and innovation. Contributing academic disciplines include, but are not limited to: Business Studies, Computer Science, Economics, Engineering, History, Information Systems, Law, Management Studies and Sociology....[the deadline for submissions is April 3, 2015] ...Full Story
Wireless Power Consortium Achieves Key Technology Milestones for Fast Charging and Resonant Multi-Device Charging with Spatial Freedom
WPC.com February 20, 2015 - The Wireless Power Consortium (WPC), the driving force and leader in the global adoption of wireless power technology, today made two draft specifications available to its members that extend the capabilities of the Qi wireless power standard.
The first extension of the Qi specification, called "Volume II: Medium Power," enables fast charging of smartphones with up to 15 Watts delivered into the battery....The second extension of the Qi specification, called "Volume III: Shared Mode," enables multi-device charging with a single inverter, a resonant technology that reduces the cost of manufacturing multi-device chargers while providing large freedom of spatial positioning.... ...Full Story
Web standard promising faster page loads wins approval
Steven Musil and Stephen Shankland
CNET February 20, 2015 - A new version of the HTTP standard that promises to deliver Web pages to browsers faster has been formally approved, the Internet protocol's first revision in 16 years.
The specifications for HTTP 2.0 have been formally approved, according to a blog post by Mark Nottingham, who as chairman of the IETF HTTPBIS Working Group serves as the standard effort's leader. The specifications will go through a last formality -- the Request for Comment documenting and editorial processes -- then be published, Nottingham wrote.
HTTP, short for Hypertext Transfer Protocol, is one of the seminal standards of the Web. It governs how a browser communicates with a Web server to load a Web page. HTTP 2.0, the protocol's first major revision since HTTP 1.1 in 1999, is designed to load Web pages faster, allowing consumers to read more pages, buy more things and perform more and faster Internet searches.
The new standard is based on SPDY, a protocol Google introduced in 2009.... ...Full Story