Teen-oriented virtual world Zwinky has expanded its e-commerce operations so that members can use real-world cash to pay for virtual goods. Starting Monday, credit cards and PayPal accounts can be used to purchase the in-game "ZBucks" currency, which members could heretofore only earn by visiting certain in-world locations and winning games. The cash will then go on new "ZCard" shopping cards which members will be able to use at the in-world retail hub, the--wait for it--Zwinchester Mall, which contains stores like the Z-Loft trendy furniture outlet and "Like Dat," a boutique branded with the … Read more
According to a McKinsey & Company study of US economic activity, "Raising the productivity of employees whose jobs can't be automated is the next big performance challenge." The study argues that "as more companies come to specialize in core activities and outsource the rest, they have greater need for workers who can interact with co-workers, partners, and vendors," supported by highly personalized organizing and communication tools. 40 percent of labor activity, says McKinsey, comes not from making things or from traditional transactions but from what the consultancy calls the "Interaction Economy," which it … Read more
Pricing is out for the new, admittedly odd-looking smart fortwo. The compact vehicle, manufactured by Mercedes, features a 1-liter, 3-cylinder engine that puts out a maximum of 71 horsepower. Cars are expected to ship the first quarter of 2008.
The base model starts at $11,590 and includes a 5-speed transmission that switches from automatic to manual mode with the touch of a button. The "passion coupe," which includes features found in more expensive luxury cars like a panorama roof, alloy wheels, paddle shifters and heated side mirrors, starts at $13,590. The convertible will be $16,590 … Read more
California-based company Resource Manufacturing Inc. (RMI), along with Wika Instrument, the world's largest gauge manufacturer, are touting their new air pressure gauge as the answer to every lazy motorist's prayer.
The patented TiroGage, which is designed to be left on, attaches directly to the tire's valve stem. The pressure reading is displayed constantly on an outer lens, which allows drivers to check their tires with just a quick glance. Air can be added or released through the gauge itself, eliminating the need for external gauges or valve stem caps.
This is great news for those of us (… Read more
For months, the community of virtual world publishers, players and economists has been holding its breath, waiting for the U.S. Congress to issue its report on the potential taxation of virtual goods.
Well, we don't have to wait much longer.
Dan Miller, a senior economist with the Congress' Joint Economic Committee, told CNET News.com on Friday that he expects the committee to issue its report during the upcoming Congressional recess next month.
What that report will say is unknown, as the committee has kept entirely quiet about its thoughts.
However, it's clear that something will happen. … Read more
Atten.TV is pure vanity.
It's also slightly creepy. Atten.TV is a Mac-only client that lets individuals sign up to have their clickstreams--or records of Web sites visited--recorded and sent to a server. Anyone can then opt to watch what these other random folks are browsing, in the same manner as one might watch television.
The Atten.TV player is a viewing window with a menu on the left that displays the clickstreams that can be tuned in. Eventually there will be an Atten.TVGuide that lists who's on. Clickstreams can be recorded and viewed later, or … Read more