I've been in Austin for less than 24 hours and I'm already exhausted but Ben Huh the founder of I Can Has Cheezburger woke me up--I meet up with him for my first interview at SXSW. He was a speaker on a SXSW Interactive panel called "UR Blog Sux and Print is Dead." The panelists discussed the pros and cons of being Internet famous and gave advice on how to be an successful blogger. Speakers included Christian Lander from Stuff White People Like, Kerry Miller from Passiveaggressivenotes.com, Heather Armstrong from Blurbodoocery Inc, and Ana Marie … Read more
SAN JOSE, Calif.--I'm staring at a table covered in circuitry, a solderless "breadboard," a bunch of wire, an antenna, and some other components--all the things I've been given to build a rudimentary RFID reader--and I'm having serious thoughts about whether I'm in the right room.
I've certainly used RFID before--tiny radio frequency ID tags are increasingly showing up in everything from grocery store items to hospital wristbands to lift tickets. But the sum total of electronics that I've made in my life is, I'm now reminding myself, zero.
And yet, … Read more
I just got back from Vancouver IxDA. Had a great time but seem to have kicked up a bit of a controversy by declaring that, as interaction designers, our medium is not technology – it's behavior. I must admit to a certain amount of surprise at the strong response, and I appreciate the immediate back up from my cohort, Jon Kolko (you can see my slides - mostly visuals - here). It is very interesting to me that this statement would seem controversial, even novel in this community. And I think it says a … Read more
Step aside, Apple and Microsoft. If MIT's little Sixth Sense gadget sees the commercial light of day, we can toss our multitouch devices out the window. Who needs a Surface or an iPhone when the very idea of being able to access information by turning any flat surface into a touch-screen display sounds far more appealing? No surface available? Simply project a screen onto your hand, and voila. Shades of Minority Report?
The folks at MIT have christened their wearable prototype Wear Ur World (WUW), a device cobbled together using everyday gizmos like a mobile projector, Webcam, and mobile phone. Hopefully, when the final product does ship, it'll reveal a sleeker, less clunky rendition without the colored finger bands, and one that has a discreet mode for when you need to access information privately.
As a demonstration of its capabilities, the wearer can draw a circle on his wrist, prompting the gadget to project a digital clock face, especially great for the myopic.
In the near future, WUW could become an indispensible digital wrist companion to enhance your lifestyle. It could provide product and price comparison information when shopping, retrieve flight information to let the wearer know about delays, automatically pull up related information from the Web when requested, and even snap pictures when you frame a subject with your fingers. … Read more
Buffeted by a steep drop in its advertising revenues, News Corp. on Thursday reported an 8.4 percent decline in its fiscal second quarter revenues and missed analysts expectations.
Revenues fell to $7.9 billion in the quarter ended December 31, compared with $8.6 billion for the same quarter a year ago. Wall Street was expecting the media giant to generate $8.39 billion, according to Thomson Reuters.News Corp. posted a net loss of $6.4 billion, or $2.45 a share, during the quarter, compared with a net profit of $832 million, or 27 cents a share, … Read more
As Americans tuned into their computers during December, the number of online videos viewed jumped 13 percent over the previous month, according to a report released Wednesday by comScore.
In the U.S., viewers watched 14.3 billion online videos in December. That translates into nearly 150 million users watching an average of 96 videos each, comScore noted in its report.
The average viewer, meanwhile, spent more than a total of 5 hours with their eyes glued to the videos, which ran an average of 3.2 minutes. Hulu viewers, however, watched online videos that ran an average of 10.… Read more
The digital unit that oversees MySpace and Photobucket for News Corp. has laid off about 100 people, or 5 percent of its workforce, according to The Wall Street Journal.
Fox Interactive Media was formed in 2005 to oversee News Corp.'s digital holdings.
MySpace CEO Chris DeWolfe said last year that the social-network site has seen big gains in ad growth. But some of News Corp.'s other digital holdings don't appear to be faring as well. Staci Kramer at the blog PaidContent.org reported last week that FIM had plans to shut down its storage site, Flektor and … Read more
An article in the New York Times says customers are being more attracted to "simple" products:
And, as it turns out, the buyers of consumer electronics could very well have been a leading economic indicator. Over the last year, they chose to buy two inexpensive and simple products, the Wii and the Flip, over competing gadgets bristling with more features.
But the article conflates two different definitions of "simple"Doing a focused function or small number of functions (i.e. it's "simple in what it does") Being easy and intuitive to use (i.… Read more
Video game publisher Take-Two Interactive Software posted a wider quarterly loss on Wednesday and forecast a sharp drop in sales revenue for the current quarter.
For the quarter that ended October 31, the company best known for its Grand Theft Auto franchise reported a net loss of $15 million, or 20 cents a share, compared with a net loss of $7.1 million, or 10 cents a share, a year ago. Revenue increased 11 percent to $323.4 million on the sales strength of its Midnight Club: Los Angeles, NBA 2K9, and Grand Theft Auto IV titles.
The company predicted … Read more
I have been almost permanently disturbed since reading Dawn Kawamoto's revelations about a survey suggesting that women would rather forgo sex for two weeks than give up Internet access.
When I read that nearly half the women surveyed felt this way, I had a number of purely instinctive reactions.
First came the notion that the Harris Interactive surveyors, at the behest of Intel, had merely been screening women who work in information technology. This would have made the results entirely understandable--for so many reasons.
However, then I shook off this conception in favor of a simple explanation: perhaps it'… Read more