It's Sunday morning on Memorial Day weekend in the U.S. The technology industry is relatively quiet. Nothing new has been leaked or announced so far about negotiations between Microsoft and Yahoo or Yahoo and Google, but I ran across a fascinating and in-depth story by Ashlee Vance of The Register on a new data center service, Switch Communications.
The company is opening a 407,000-square-foot data center in Las Vegas that CEO Rob Roy claims will house four times as much gear as facilities from companies such as Google and Microsoft. He boasts:"This building will be … Read more
As you may know, I use both Mac and Windows PCs at work and write software reviews for both. In my experience, each platform has its strengths and weaknesses, but both can be extremely powerful if you have the right software. To me, it's not about picking which platform is the best, it's about finding the software you need to get the job done.
One of the great additions to the Mac OS in recent iterations is the visual program and document management system called Expose. On a Windows machine, you probably switch apps by using the trusty … Read more
A correction was made to this story. Read below for details.
Foot traffic seems slow at this year's Interop business tech conference. I've heard about companies issuing travel bans on employees and vendors pulling out at the last minute due to budget constraints. However, the people who run Interop say attendance is up from last year.
Nevertheless, the networking industry is making the best out of it. Some of the early highlights for me include:
As long as some people simply can't stand leaving their USB ports unoccupied for any length of time, here's at least one way that they can be used without making a fool of oneself while saving some desk space at the same time. The "Photo Frame Speakers" will blast away in stereo from behind the frames on either side of the computer, though the pictures aren't digital--not exactly seemless technological convergence, as Everything USB notes, but it'll do in a pinch. Especially if you use them at the office while your Metal Gear Solid 4 … Read more
There's a good piece by Saul Hansell over on The New York Times' "Bits" blog.
Hansell describes how Comcast is being criticized for low picture quality on certain broadcasts. That's interesting, especially in light of the contention between Comcast and DirecTV on this very issue, but it isn't the most important point in Hansell's post.
Hansell goes on to give a reasonable explanation of the basic issues involved, and mentions the likely future of cable TV: digital video distributed over Internet-like network switches. Instead of always sending every TV channel to every house, a … Read more
Even after seeing all the crazy functions that have been incorporated into the once-lowly mouse, we never anticipated that privacy would be one of them. Yet that was the stated goal of a combo Skype phone-mouse we saw recently, and now it's been cited for another one as well.
There are many different types of privacy, however, and the purpose of the "USB Smart Privacy Mouse" isn't to protect confidential conversations and such--instead, it's intended to keep prying eyes from snooping on your computer monitor. That makes it quite similar to the "Phantom Mouse&… Read more
As you may know, here at Crave we're big fans of the off switch. But as we've previously noted, it's an endangered species. Happily, Toshiba is keen to stop David Cameron from mounting a full-on campaign against LCD TVs by allowing its customers to turn them off properly.
You probably know what modern TVs are like. You're pretty lucky if you can find one with a proper off switch--sometimes you get a second standby button on the TV, but the good clunking motion we remember from CRTs of the '80s have long gone. This is, as … Read more
Thanko is one outfit we'll never be able to figure out. Just after releasing its latest example of inanity, a vacuuming mouse, it comes out with a product that might actually be practical.
The new version of the Japanese company's self-described "Silent Keyboard" allows you to pound away in the middle of the night without waking the neighbors or, if you work the night shift, your co-workers in the next cubicle. There are others that make the same claim, but Akihabara News says this one can be used with two PCs, alternating from one to the … Read more
I was in New York yesterday to attend Juniper Networks' big product introduction. If you haven't heard, Juniper announced a new line of Ethernet switches, from small access switches to big data center and core switches.
While I believe this is very good news for Juniper, I couldn't help but overhear some of the lugubrious pontifications of other industry and financial analysts. I expect the "glass half full" crowd to say things like:
1. Big deal, there are already a lot of Ethernet switching companies, so Juniper is just piling onto an existing market. This isn'… Read more