Saturday Snippets

All the news that's fit to rant aboutPlaying catchup with the tech news since 2003…

  1. The FCC has approved BPL: broadband over power lines, and utilities in Washington State and Ohio are moving to implement it. The technology could bring high-speed Internet to areas unserved by DSL and cable modems. The ARRL, which has been virulently opposed to BPL, said they were cautiously optimistic that the new rules would protect hams.
  2. Project Fluffy Bunny has seen the light of day. Google is extending its search business to your desktop. The new Google desktop search indexes Outlook and Outlook Express email, Microsoft Office files, filenames, web history, chat logs, and text files. It integrates into Internet Explorer, and future Google searches will include results from your own hard drive as well as the web in general. It’s a great product considering the price, but I still prefer X1 for its speed and the wider variety of files it searches.
  3. It has been rumored that Google is also considering distributing its own Instant Messaging client. Experts who examined the code in the desktop tool says it supports its own IM protocol. Google’s acquisition of Picasa some months ago gave it access to the IM code in Picasa’s Hello program.
  4. Intel has announced it won’t produce a 4GHz Pentium 4 after all. Overheating problems with higher clock speeds are forcing the company to focus its efforts on multi-core chips – single chips with two processors – and improving efficiency in the Pentium 4 line with larger caches.
  5. Meanwhile AMD continues its march to eclipse Intel. Tuesday the company will unveil the Athlon 64 FX-55 and the Athlon 64 4000+. The FX is currently the best performing desktop CPU on the market.
  6. Netflix is announcing that it’s cutting its monthly fee from $22 to $17 because it expects Amazon to enter the business soon. Earlier this year Netflix raised its fee from $20 to $22 – but I guess that didn’t work. The DVD by mail company’s stock tumbled 41% in after hours trading on the news. Blockbuster responded by dropping its monthly fee to $17.49. Analysts say neither company can expect to make money at that price.
  7. More troubles for Bungie. Just days after announcing that Halo 2 for the Xbox is ready to ship, a pirated copy has leaked onto the Internet. The French language version is for PAL television sets and won’t play without a mod chip.
  8. Apple’s iTunes Music Store sold its 150 millionth song on Thursday. The store is averaging four million tracks a week. Beth Santisteven of Ignacio, Colorado bought the 150 millionth song: Lauryn Hill’s “Ex-Factor.” Apple sold two million iPods in Q4.
  9. Of course, Apple is not without competition. Starbucks is rolling out music burning stations in its coffee shops. Fifteen new Hear Music stations will open Monday in Seattle. Thirty later this month in Austin. A trial store has been open in Santa Monica since March.
  10. According to Dell’s Consumer Spyware Initiative, 90% of PC users have been infected by spyware, and the majority have no idea what to do about it. The Internet Education Initiative has set up a spyware education page. Unfortunately it seems to focus on commercial tools from its partners, rather than the free and effective tools most experts recommend.


11 Replies to “Saturday Snippets”

  1. “Kids don’t sword fight with my letter opener please”
    hehe great newscast Leo

  2. Leo,You said in todays podcast that the google desktop search only works in internet explorer – I use it fine in Mozilla Firefox!!
    Open a browser window in FF goto and click desktop!!!
    🙂 -T

  3. Yeah, I’m using Google Desktop just fine on a relative’s Windows machine in Firefox. I’m going to try to run comparison tests with Unix’s locate function and see which is faster/more accurate/finds more files.
    X1 might be faster, but it’s $75 out of your pocket, compared to Desktop, which is free and is perfect for most users’ needs (except *nixes, which can use locate).
    Also, has anybody compared Google Desktop to Copernic’s free version for home users?

  4. I’m just wondering if pop-ups are now finding new ways onto our desktops. I’ve noticed more pop-ups. Have they found out new ways around filter?

  5. LOL too funny Leo, the waffle iron is in the garage?! Either you don’t have waffles too often or you have a serious storage problem! 😆
    I knew the percentage of spyware infected computers had to be high but 90% is mind boggling and from what I’m seeing spyware is only getting worse. I’m not the least bit surprised, however, to hear that most people don’t know what to do about the problem. Of all the tips and tricks I’ve learned from you, Leo, that I pass on to friends and family the ones people coming back to repeatedly thank me for are Spybot and Ad-aware. Most times these people had been at the end of their rope with problems they didn’t know were being caused by spyware gumming up the works. Too bad that spyware information page neglects to mention them, well I guess at least getting the word out about spyware is helpful.

  6. Leo, the audio version was priceless! Thanks for letting us hear it all, including the kids. : )

  7. I second that motion i loved the “At home with Leo Laporte” feel of todays PodCast.Good job Leo, oh and Henry.

  8. I loved the at home feel of today’s mini broadcast! news with an honest smile – nicely done. Kudos to your “associates”, Leo! :coolsmile:

  9. Leo… Are you sure the French language version is for PAL sets? IIRC, France uses SECAM and not PAL.

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