Monday, December 31, 2007
Leading US colleges are among 100 educational establishments worldwide which are spearheading a new initiative to promote online courses, confirming the growth of education online.
Among the US faculties in the consortium are John Hopkins, Tufts, Notre Dame and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), which has made all of its courses available for free and is getting over one million hits per month on its OpenCourseWare website, allheadlinenews.com reports. Those undertaking the MIT programmes do not, however, get a degree for completing the course, but for an average outlay of $20,000, the classes are considerably cheaper than taking the same programme on campus.
News of the consortium comes after Yale announced it is to allow content from seven of its most popular courses available online. Data from the Sloan Consortium indicates that around 3.5 million US students are currently taking an online course - equivalent to 20 percent of the total college population.
Friday, December 28, 2007
MP3tunes Announces Custom Technology for Wii, Plus More Music for New Year's
The thousands and thousands of people who were lucky enough to unwrap a new Nintendo Wii this holiday season can now play all their digital music through the gaming device with new technology from MP3tunes -- http://www.mp3tunes.com. Developed by Rodney Powers for MP3tunes, owners of the Wii can now use the device's controller to wirelessly stream their personal music collections from their own Music Lockers. Music stored in MP3tunes Music Lockers can also be played on the Sony PlayStation 3, Windows Mobile devices, a variety of Internet radios and more, thanks to the MP3tunes open API (Application Programming Interface).
"The Wii is the latest popular gaming device that, with MP3tunes' technology, actually becomes a home stereo system," commented Michael Robertson, CEO of MP3tunes. "Consumers shouldn't be limited in where or how they enjoy their personal music collections, and we will continue to announce new ways MP3tunes is fulfilling its vision of giving people access to all of their music, anywhere they go." For more details and set-up instructions for the Wii, PS3 and other devices, visit www.mp3tunes.com/wii. To sign-up for a free MP3tunes Music Locker visit www.mp3tunes.com/signup.
Thursday, December 27, 2007
Groovy Free is a place to get free stuff. We make it fun and easy to let you try some of the grooviest services on the web with absolutely no risk. Simply choose the offers you want to try, complete the required information, and you are finished. Visit www.groovyfree.com
Thursday, December 20, 2007
MP3tunes Announces New Technology, Plus Free Holiday Music
This holiday's hottest gift, the Sony PlayStation3, has become even hotter with new technology from MP3tunes www.mp3tunes.com -- that turns the gaming device into a home stereo system. Developed by Ade Rutter for MP3tunes, owners of the PS3 can now wirelessly stream their personal music collections from their own MP3tunes Music Locker using the console's controller. Music stored in MP3tunes Mushttp://www.blogger.com/img/gl.link.gific Lockers can also be played on Windows Mobile devices, the Logitech Squeezebox, Chumby and more, thanks to MP3tunes' open API (Application Programming Interface).
"My vision for MP3tunes is that a person's digital music collection will play not just through any web browser but through all their devices," commented Michael Robertson, CEO of MP3tunes. "To help reach our goal, we sponsored a $10,000 contest, challenging the best developers to help us get people's music to every device and service. Full streaming of the Music Locker through the Sony PlayStation3 is just the first of many exciting announcements MP3tunes will be making about how we will deliver our users' music to every popular device they own." For more details and set-up instructions for the PS3 and other devices, visit www.mp3tunes.com/contest. To sign-up for a free MP3tunes Music Locker visit http://www.mp3tunes.com/signup.
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
Wait times at the airport, doctors' offices and restaurants just got a little bit more interesting for Verizon Wireless customers in Berks County. Verizon Wireless has expanded its V CAST Mobile TV service to the area, giving local residents the ability to watch broadcast-quality television on select mobile TV-enabled handsets. The service has been available in Philadelphia since April.
V CAST Mobile TV features live content and other programming 24 hours a day from well-known entertainment brands including CBS Mobile, Comedy Central, ESPN Mobile TV, Fox Mobile, MTV, NBC 2GO, NBC News2GO, and Nickelodeon. Customers can watch their favorite network TV shows, sports and breaking news when they're taking a break from Christmas shopping, waiting at the airport, killing time between classes, or otherwise looking for time to fill.
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
ESPN Mobile TV, CBS Mobile and FOX Mobile to Bring Full-length College Bowl Games to V CAST Mobile TV Phones with MediaFLO USA and Verizon Wireless
On-the-go Fans Can Catch Dozens of Live Bowl Game Match-ups
This holiday season, NCAA football fans will be able to watch live, full-length college bowl games from a variety of broadcast and cable networks on their mobile phones.
Verizon Wireless, the nation's leading wireless provider, and MediaFLO USA, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Qualcomm Incorporated (Nasdaq:QCOM), have teamed up to bring fans full-length coverage of 24 bowl games, kicking off with ESPN Mobile TV's telecast of the Poinsettia Bowl on December 20 and wrapping up with ESPN's GMAC Bowl on January 6. Coverage of the 2008 bowl games will be provided by ESPN Mobile TV, CBS Mobile and FOX Mobile through V CAST Mobile TV from Verizon Wireless, a service of
V CAST Mobile TV subscribers will have convenient access to some of the season's biggest college football moments right on their phones -- a significant benefit for sports fans traveling during the holidays. ESPN Mobile TV, ESPN's first 24/7 channel for the mobile platform, will provide several highly anticipated, must-see games, including the Alamo Bowl on December 29, which will pit two schools steeped in college football tradition against one another with Penn State taking on Texas A&M, and Alabama head coach Nick Saban will cap off his first year back on the
college sidelines as his Alabama Crimson Tide faces off against the Colorado Buffaloes in the PetroSun Independence Bowl on December 30. Additionally, the Virginia Cavaliers will look to put the clamps on the high-scoring Texas Tech Red Raiders in the Gator Bowl on January 1 on CBS Mobile, and FOX Mobile will broadcast the Cotton Bowl on January 1, pitting Arkansas against Big XII runner-up, the University of Missouri.
Friday, December 14, 2007
Before filling your sleigh with goodies, use these ID theft prevention tips
With the holiday shopping season in full swing, and with the growing threat of ID theft looming, consumers may not know their identities could also be for sale.
The intersection of commerce and cyber-crime could be a bumpy road for shoppers over the next month, so don't let the ID theft grinches steal your holiday cheer this year.
"Wherever there's information about a person, whether it's retained by a retailer, bank, credit bureau or database, there's someone out there who has the ability to steal it," said Dan Clements, spokesman for ID Secure, a sophisticated new tool that uses leading-edge public records, Social Security number and credit card monitoring technology to fight identity theft. "The more difficult you make it for someone to rip you off, the less chance you have of becoming a victim of identity theft. These criminals are not looking for a challenge; they're looking for an opportunity."
ID Secure, a leading-edge public records, Social Security number, credit card and cyber-crime chat room monitoring service, is distributing a useful tip a day from Dec. 7-24 using the "12 Days of Christmas" theme to help protect consumers against the fastest growing crime in America.
With the holiday shopping season in high gear -- retail sales are expected to hit $474.5 billion this year, according to the National Retail Federation, and online shopping soared 37 percent on Cyber-Monday this year -- it is now more important than ever, to take steps to protect your identity.
Before you load up your sleigh with holiday gifts, remember these tips from the experts at ID Secure:
On the sixth day of Christmas my expert reminded me:
1. Shop smart ... When shopping, limit the credit cards you carry and
don't take extras. Leave your Social Security card, birth certificate
and passport at home.
2. Keep receipts ... For post-holiday statements, be sure to examine
every charge on your statement before paying. Your receipts provide a
great cross-reference check and guard against suspicious activity.
3. Protect computer prior to online shopping ... Make sure your security
patch and antivirus software is updated regularly. Consider purchasing
technology that protects against potential viruses that threaten your
identity. Always check for the lock icon on the website's browser
status bar, which signals a secure site that is safe for transactions.
4. Don't write a check ... When considering the gift of money, give cash
or a gift card. If you write a check, make sure that your Social
Security number is NOT on the check.
5. Give the gift of safety ... Buy a cross-cut shredder -- a great line
of defense for would-be ID thieves -- for that special someone on your
list. It is smart to purchase one to protect yourself, too.
6. Strengthen passwords ... Create passwords that will not be easily
cracked by hackers. Use strong passwords with at least eight
characters, including a combination of letters, numbers and symbols
that are easy for you to remember, but difficult for predators to
Identity theft is the fastest growing crime in America, with 27.3 million victims in the past five years, and nearly 20 million in the past two years alone, according to a study from Javelin Strategy & Research. This crime costs more than $56 billion, or $6,383 per victim, annually, and has become so prevalent, that an identity thief strikes on average every 3.5 seconds. In fact, ID theft has now surpassed drug trafficking as the No. 1 crime in America, according to the Justice Department.
Thursday, December 13, 2007
CoolSavings.com Partners with PriceGrabber.com to Provide Consumers with Additional Ways to Save on Shopping Needs
'Tis the season to compare and save. CoolSavings.com the leading online savings destination, announced today that it has partnered with PriceGrabber.com, one of the most trusted and effective online comparison shopping services, to provide CoolSavings.com visitors online retail price comparisons. This service offering is a natural extension for CoolSavings.com -- known as a one-stop shopping destination for savings.
"Our recent holiday spending survey highlighted that consumers turn to online comparison shopping as well as online coupons as a solution to find the best value for their dollar," said Mandy Brown, director, product management at Q Interactive, which owns CoolSavings.com. "CoolSavings.com visitors now have a new option to quickly and easily find the best prices on a comprehensive list of desired products such as electronics, clothing, diapers and toys."
Consumers can try out the new service by clicking on the "Compare Prices" tab at the top of CoolSavings.com's home page. Once inside the Compare Price section www.coolsavings.pricegrabber.com, there are multiple ways to comparison shop.
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
Spike TV and GameTrailers.com to Launch 'GameTrailers TV With Geoff Keighley' - The Ultimate Hi-Definition Show for Gamers - On-Air and Online
Spike TV and GameTrailers.com (GT), both divisions of Viacom Inc.'s (NYSE: VIA, VIA.B) MTVN Entertainment Group, announced today an unprecedented multi-platform integration with the launch of "GameTrailers TV with Geoff Keighley." This weekly, entertaining and informative magazine-style show for gamers will be available in high- definition on-air and online beginning Friday, January 25, 2008. Produced and created by GameTrailers.com, "GameTrailers TV" marks the first time an MTVN Entertainment Group digital property has fully executed a half-hour show for linear television. Taking Spike TV's "Game Head" to the next level, "GameTrailers TV" will provide viewers with expanded editorial content and an all-new level of interaction online at GameTrailers.com.
"GameTrailers TV" is hosted and executive produced by industry veteran and "Game Head" host Geoff Keighley. Every week, Keighley and co-hosts Amanda MacKay and Daniel Kayser will bring fans the latest scoop on the gaming industry's hottest titles, coolest events and biggest stars, offering the access and insight millions of viewers have come to expect from GameTrailers.com. Featuring a rotation of over 20 timely and relevant segments, "Game Trailers TV" will provide exclusive content catering to
gamers with varying interest levels from the casual gamer to hardcore enthusiasts. Viewers can go online to GameTrailers for more in-depth looks
at topics covered in the show.
Friday, December 7, 2007
During the coming months a range of American airlines will test the use of in-flight internet, it has been reported.
Among the airlines involved are JetBlue, American Airlines, Virgin America and Alaska Airlines. Free email and instant messaging services are to be offered by JetBlue on a trial basis on one of its planes starting Tuesday of next week.
Henry Harteveldt, an analyst with Forrester Research, told the NY Times: "I think 2008 is the year when we will finally start to see in-flight internet access become available, but I suspect the rollout domestically will take place in a very measured way. "In a few years time, if you get on a flight that doesn't have internet access, it will be like walking into a hotel room that doesn't have TV."
Virgin America, American Airlines and Alaska Airlines are set to offer an in-flight internet service which will cost $10 per flight.
Thursday, December 6, 2007
Two-Day Event and Webcast Features Performances by Some of the Biggest
Alternative Rock Bands of the Year
Christmas is just a fewshort weeks away, but fans of rock music are about to get an early gift that will have them rockin' around the computer screen!
AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) announced today that the AT&T blue room (www.attblueroom.com) will give fans around the country exclusive access to the annual KROQ Almost Acoustic Christmas event. Based in Los Angeles, the world-famous KROQ is the most listened to and, arguably, the most influential rock station in the country. For more than 15 years, the station has been attracting established and up-and-coming alternative rock bands and singers to perform for fans at its yearly Almost Acoustic Christmas event.
Concert footage and backstage interviews from KROQ's Almost Acoustic Christmas will be streamed live via AT&T blue room music (www.attblueroom.com/music) on both Saturday, Dec. 8, and Sunday, Dec. 9. The artist lineup includes such bands as:
-- Angels & Airwaves -- Paramore
-- Avenged Sevenfold -- Rise Against
-- Bad Religion -- Serj Tankian
-- Feist -- The Shins
-- Jimmy Eat World -- Spoon
In addition to the live streaming content, select performances also will be archived on blue room enabling fans to relive their favorite performances all holiday season.
Wednesday, December 5, 2007
After soccer superstar and ex-England captain David Beckham visited New Zealand, a range of bizarre souvenirs has come up for bid on the internet.
A half-eaten corn cob is one of the items up for grabs, salvaged from a Nando's restaurant where the LA Galaxy player had dinner. The auction site is also offering a near-empty bottle of Coca-Cola reputedly drunk by the popular athlete. Beckham fans could also bid on a plate, knife and fork used by the player and a single French fry dropped by Golden Balls himself. So far the French fry has attracted a bid of three dollars.
The LA Galaxy midfielder was in New Zealand to play an exhibition match against a local team, Wellington Phoenix. Since joining his new LA-based team, the ex-Real Madrid and Manchester United player has yet to win any trophies, however he has re-emerged in the England squad. However, his presence was not enough to stop England from humiliatingly failing to qualify for the European Championships in 2008.
Tuesday, December 4, 2007
Jennifer Love Hewitt has reacted angrily to internet taunts making fun of a picture of her wearing a bikini at the beach.
The curvy actress was caught showing cellulite while frolicking on the beach in Hawaii with her boyfriend Ross McCall. The pictures have been widely shown on the internet and ridiculed. But Hewitt, 28, has said that she is proud of her body and that the cruel jibes contribute to man young girls having bad body images.
She wrote on her website: "To set the record straight, I'm not upset for me, but for all the girls out there that are struggling with their body image. "A size 2 is not fat! Nor will it ever be. And being a size 0 doesn't make you beautiful."
Hewitt went on to urge "all girls with butts, boobs, hips and a waist", to put on bikinis and not be shy.
Broadband National’s new “MDU Module” enables property managers to provide unbiased information and access to Internet, television, digital phone, rental insurance, home security and more
Broadband National, Inc., the leading ecommerce platform promoting digital services and products, today announced a new application focused on the 20 percent of U.S. households that move annually. The new “MDU Module” is a turn-key application that allows owners and management companies of multi-dwelling units (MDUs) to offer residents a seamless process to order services that are typically required when moving into a new apartment or condominium. The company’s MDU Module will provide the millions of Americans living in apartments and other multiple dwelling units with access to the largest selection of services backed by an unbiased, unified comparison and ordering experience.
The announcement comes on the heels of a recent Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Report and Order which makes exclusive deals between network operators and the owners of MDUs illegal. The Broadband National offering addresses this new freedom of choice by enabling owners and managers of MDUs to provide their residents with unbiased information and access to a number of digital services including Internet, cable and satellite television, and digital telephone. Owners and managers will also have the flexibility to customize the module to offer additional services, such as renters’ insurance, security systems, appliance and furniture leases, grocery delivery services and more.
“The MDU Module was designed to help property owners and managers not only remain in compliance with the FCC ruling, but also to streamline their own operations while enabling their residents to conveniently choose the best available services in their area,” said Vinny Olmstead, president and CEO of Broadband National. “The offering truly enables MDU managers to become a trusted, one-stop resource for their residents by leveraging Broadband National’s insight and access to thousands of service options.”
Several top real estate management companies have already selected the Broadband National Module to deliver this new level of convenience to residents at properties across the country. The service is scheduled for general availability in Q1 2008. For more information, contact Mark Weibel at (772) 316-1007.
About Broadband National, Inc.
Broadband National is a leading online ecommerce platform that enables consumer and business users to research, compare, and purchase services such as high speed Internet, television, gaming, VoIP, photo sharing, videos, home security, and more on its proprietary IBIS software. Advertisers such as Comcast, AT&T, D-Link, Panasonic, and DIRECTV use the highly configurable and flexible platform to promote services in a convenient, customer-friendly format. The IBIS platform powers more than 1,000 websites and is also leased to many Fortune 500 companies enabling them to monetize online, call center, and in-store traffic. For more information please visit www.broadbandnational.com.
Monday, December 3, 2007
The head of MI5, Britain's domestic security agency, has issued a warning to companies about China's widespread campaign of espionage on the internet.
Jonathan Evans has accused the People's Liberation Army of spying on companies doing business in China and even stealing data from them to benefit Chinese companies. This incident is believed to be the first time that a government has directly accused the Chinese of dubious internet activities. A summary of a letter from Jonathan Evans sent to various companies that do business in China, read: "The contents of the letter highlight the following: the director-general's concerns about the possible damage to ... business resulting from electronic attack sponsored by Chinese state organizations, and the fact that the attacks are designed to defeat best practice IT security systems."
The Chinese government has yet to react to Mr Evans' allegations. British prime minister Gordon Brown is set to visit China in January of next year.
Today MyStore.com confirmed Julian Lennon, son of Beatles icon John Lennon, is among the group of private investors behind yourStore, LLC. The company owns and operates www.mystore.com, an online marketplace.
"In addition to his monetary investment, Julian has contributed some great ideas to the options MyStore.com offers to musicians and artists who want to resell or self distribute their music and art online. As an independent artist himself, Mr. Lennon was an early user of MyStore.com, setting up his own MyStore and linking it to several places he has a presence online including his MySpace page. We are glad to have him involved. He's been a friend for a long time," stated Todd Meagher, the company's CEO.
MyStore.com is owned by yourStore, LLC (http://www.yourstore.com) which is a virtual real estate company and application service provider offering individuals and businesses with FREE online "retail" space and software usage in the form of personalized web stores located within the company's marketplace http://www.MyStore.com and an e-commerce service provider offering seller support and software services; including web hosting, site design, marketing, fulfillment and inventory and customer management tools. MyStore is not an alternative but rather an additional sales channel that can be either a stand-alone store or integrated as part of other websites like eBay, Craigslist, MySpace, Facebook, Friendster, Amazon or Yahoo. Users simply build a store and start selling. MyStore provides the marketplace
and tools to promote, sell or trade your items and services.
Friday, November 30, 2007
The FBI's operation to combat botnets, dubbed Bot Roast, has succeeded in securing the convictions of an array of cyber criminals, it has been reported.
After commencing in 2005, Bot Roast has moved into its second phase and the FBI has so far discovered over $20 million in losses caused by botnets. It has also announced that it has secured guilty pleas from two hackers, indicted three and sentenced three more.
In addition, a teenager based in New Zealand, who is believed to be the ringleader of a sizable botnet gang, has been arrested. The teenager cannot be named, but is known by his online alias of Akill.
Allegedly Akill and his gang skimmed millions of dollars from those who use online banking. According to the FBI, up to 1.3 million computers were under Akill's direct control. If convicted, the teenager could face up to a decade in prison.
To mark the holiday season AT&T is offering a brand new selection of music, games and e-cards to its customers.
New holiday-themed ring tones and answer tones can be acquired by AT&T customers completely free of charge and include favorites such as Jingle Bells, Noche de Paz and the Dreidel Song. Among the answer tones that one can choose from are Rockin Around the Christmas Tree by Cyndi Lauper and Wizards in Winter by the Trans-Siberian Orchestra.
Mark Collins, vice president of consumer data for AT&T's wireless unit, said: "This time of year is traditionally one of the most popular for music and entertainment downloads. "AT&T is excited to offer free and festive holiday favorites for customers to enjoy throughout the season." As well as the music on offer, AT&T has also made available a new game, entitled Santa's Tower Bloxx, by Digital Chocolate.
Meanwhile AT&T's Virtual National Customer Service Center has been named as one of 2007's top ten projects.
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
LG Phone Battery Explosion Kills Korean
In the first such case in Korea, a 33-year-old man was found dead on Wednesday, presumably killed by a cell phone battery explosion, police said. The cell phone was the product of a LG Electronics.
The man, identified only by his family name, Sur, was found dead by his coworkers at a quarry in North Chungcheong Province where he was employed as a shovel operator, according to the police.
"When I was going up the stony hill to set dynamite, I found a man lying down beside an electronic shovel," said a coworker identified as Kwon. "He was already bleeding from the nose. He had a mobile phone with a melted battery in his left shirt pocket. His shirt had soot on it in the shape of the phone." Prof. Kim Hoon at Chungbuk National University, who examined the body, presumed the death was caused by a phone battery explosion.
"He was injured in the left side of his chest. His ribs and spine were broken. The explosion punctured his heart and lungs, leading to his death," Kim said.
Sur's family and coworkers said he had no chronic diseases.
The death marks the first time that a person has been killed by a cell phone battery explosion in South Korea. In June, Chinese media reported that a person was killed by a mobile phone explosion in China.
Creates renewable energy Research and Development group and supports breakthrough technologies
Google today announced a new strategic initiative to develop electricity from renewable energy sources that will be cheaper than electricity produced from coal. The newly created initiative, known as RE C, will focus initially on advanced solar thermal power, wind power technologies, enhanced geothermal systems and other potential breakthrough technologies. RE C is hiring engineers and energy experts to lead its research and development work, which will begin with a significant effort on solar thermal technology, and will also investigate enhanced geothermal systems and other areas. In 2008, Google expects to spend tens of millions on research and development and related investments in renewable energy. As part of its capital planning process, the company also anticipates investing hundreds of millions of dollars in breakthrough renewable energy projects which generate positive returns.
"We have gained expertise in designing and building large-scale, energy-intensive facilities by building efficient data centers," said Larry Page, Google Co-founder and President of Products. "We want to apply the same creativity and innovation to the challenge of generating renewable electricity at globally significant scale, and produce it cheaper than from coal."
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
Over two-thirds of young Chinese view the internet as an "essential" part of their lives, a new survey from the ad firm JWT and the investment company IAC has found.
Approximately half of the 16 to 25-year-olds surveyed said that their online lives were more rewarding and visceral than their real ones. Young American users of the internet on the other hand were shown to have a more evenly balanced view regarding the internet, the survey discovered. A full 42 percent of the Chinese youth surveyed said they felt addicted to the internet, compared with 18 percent of the Americans surveyed. However, IAC chairman Barry Diller said that he thinks there are advantages to China's embrace of the internet.
He said: "The Chinese people seem to be way ahead of Americans in living a digital life. "More activity online means a more connected and a more evolved workforce - just what China needs as it moves from being the workshop of the world to a developed economy in its own right."
Monday, November 26, 2007
Security software company Symantec has launched its new security product for mobile devices.
Dubbed Norton Smartphone Security, the product provides protection for devices which use both Windows Mobile and Symbian OS. As well as Norton Antivirus, the new product also has a firewall and antispam for text messaging. Rowan Trollope, senior vice president, Consumer Business Unit, Symantec, said: "Smartphones are expanding consumer freedom to communicate and access important information anytime, anywhere.
"However, unsecure public Wi-Fi or network connections can put users at risk. In addition, web and email viruses can directly infect smartphones, enabling hackers to remotely control the device, access sensitive information or disable applications." Mr Trollope added that Smartphone Security "runs discreetly in the background" and provides users the knowledge that they are safe to email, browse the internet or even bank online from a mobile device. Meanwhile, it has been reported that businesses in the Asia-Pacific region are to spend at least $2.8 billion on IT security a study from Access Markets International found.
Experts have warned that hackers are preparing to step up their activities to target online holiday shoppers, reports PC World.
The Friday after Thanksgiving, known to retailers as Black Friday, will mark the start of a shopping free-for-all, but will also be the signal to cyber criminals to augment their efforts, Secure Computing has warned. Black Friday is followed by what has been deemed Cyber Monday, when thousands of Americans shop online for gifts from their places of work.
Paul Henry, vice president of strategic accounts at Secure Computing, told PC World: "The holiday season in general is a huge time for hackers ... [and] Black Friday is typically the start. "This year, my biggest concern for consumers is all the web-borne malware out there." He added that online consumers should be especially wary of unsolicited emails which advertise amazing shopping deals. These are often just bait, created by cyber criminals. For more information on digital products and services visit Broadband National.
Wednesday, November 21, 2007
New Jersey is currently pushing through legislation which will require online dating websites to tell their customers whether or not they have performed background checks on users of the site.
Furthermore, the Internet Dating Safety Act stipulates that if the site does perform background checks, it must then state whether it allows those who have failed the checks to use the site. Sponsors of the bill claim that it would ensure that the websites themselves take responsibility for the safety of dating online.
However, internet dating sites are opposed to the legislation, maintaining that background checks are not reliable enough to be trusted. Assemblyman Gordon Johnson told the Associated Press: "We are charged with protecting the safety of the public we serve and this bill is a major step, even though it's not the perfect bill."
Internet giant Yahoo! is opposed to the act.
The chairman of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has been urged by two senators to subject the proposed acquisition of DoubleClick by Google to in-depth examination.
Google wants to buy the internet advertising giant DoubleClick for $3.1 billion, but the deal has been held up while the FTC examines whether it could violate antitrust laws. Now Senator Orrin Hatch, a Republican from Utah and Senator Herb Kohl, a Democrat from Wisconsin, have both called on the FTC to seriously look at whether the deal could hurt competition on the internet.
The two senators wrote: "While we have not reached any definitive conclusion regarding this issue, we urge that you only approve the merger if you determine that it will not cause any substantial lessening of competition with respect to internet advertising." Google's proposed acquisition of DoubleClick is only one episode in a recent scramble by the big internet companies to grab a piece of the lucrative internet advertising sector. For information on other digital products and services visit www.broadbandnational.com
Tuesday, November 20, 2007
This holiday season is set to see a horde of online shoppers purchase their Christmas gifts over the internet and it is all to start in a week, on so-called Cyber Monday.
The Monday after Thanksgiving is the traditional start of the holiday spending scramble and many online retailers have waited until now to offer their best deals. Scott Silverman, Executive Director of Shop.org, said: "As more people rely on the internet for holiday shopping, retailers have stepped up their game to compete.
"This year, promotions on Cyber Monday are extremely competitive as online retailers use an assortment of one-day specials to send shoppers online."
Currently over half of US homes have access to broadband internet and the popularity of online shopping has increased yearly of late. A poll, commissioned by Shop.org and carried out by BIGresearch, found that 54.5 percent of office workers with internet access intended on shopping from work in the coming weeks.
Monday, November 19, 2007
Stare at the four dots in the center of this image for about 30 seconds. Try not to blink. Then lean back, look at the ceiling and close your eyes a few times, and then close them. Did you see Jesus?
American football aficionados who receive video and broadband services from Verizon may be interested to know that the company has introduced a new service, aimed at enhancing their viewing experience.
NFL Network Game Extra will provide virtual control room facilities, which will allow the viewer to control the camera angles they view the action from when they watch live online broadcasts on Thursdays and Saturdays. Other features provided with the new service include the ability to access game statistics and video highlights on demand, plus a chat function.
Bill Heilig, vice president of consumer broadband product development at Verizon, believes the new service will result in "the best NFL experience this year" for viewers. They will be able to "expand their already rich television viewing through a highly interactive, online experience that gives them unprecedented control over what they see and hear on the field", he claims.
Friday, November 16, 2007
The websites of the National Hockey League (NHL) and Major League Baseball (MLB) have been compromised by malicious code, it has been reported.
Visitors to the site were shown a message telling them that they had to scan their computers for viruses. However, rather than scanning for viruses, malicious software would be downloaded onto their PCs.
According to security experts, the exploitative message only occurred occasionally, making it difficult to track down and remove. Roger Thompson, the chief technology officer at Exploit Labs, told SCMagazine.com: "The user never got a chance to give permission for the virus scan - it just started right away.
"Second, it wasn't really scanning, it was just pretending to scan and showing all sorts of lies about what it was finding." Last weekend saw "a huge rash" of attacks occurring through banner ads on various websites, Mr Thompson added.
Thursday, November 15, 2007
There are an increasing number of instances of Internet users piggybacking onto other people's Wi-Fi networks, a security company has warned.
A full 54 percent of internet users admit to having used someone else's connection at least once, a survey from Sophos revealed. Many of those who have a wireless network have failed to secure it through passwords and encryption, the security software company warned. By not securing one's network, one leaves oneself open to hackers who are able to steal passwords and other confidential information. Graham Cluley, a senior technology consultant at Sophos, said: "Stealing Wi-Fi internet access may feel like a victimless crime, but it deprives ISPs of revenue. "Furthermore, if you've hopped onto your next door neighbors' wireless broadband connection to illegally download movies and music from the net, chances are that you are also slowing down their internet access."
By poaching one's neighbor's Internet connection, one may also be adversely affecting their download limit, added Mr Cluley.
Wednesday, November 14, 2007
Young Europeans are likely to spend more time on the internet during the week than in front of the television, according to a new survey from the European Interactive Advertising Association.
The survey showed that approximately 60 per cent of Europeans can now access the internet. And now there are 12 percent more over-55s using the internet and eight percent more women, the research discovered. Alison Fennah, the executive director of the EIAA, told the Associated Press: "Our Mediascope study shows consumers are using the internet for function and fun as their media world becomes truly digital." A full 82 percent of young people in Europe report getting on the internet at least five days per week and overall 42 percent of users log on to a social networking site at least once per month.
The survey also found that the vast majority - 80 percent - of Europeans use broadband to connect to the internet.
Tuesday, November 13, 2007
The newly-appointed UN counter-terrorism chief has warned that the internet is effectively being used as a weapon by terrorists, reports Reuters.
Mike Smith said that terrorists around the world can use the internet as a place to organize and communicate. For this reason the internet must be much more closely monitored by the UN and individual nations' security outfits, he added.
Mr Smith told the news service: "The internet is a real worry and I don't think we've found the answer yet. "In the old days extremists used to have to cross borders to plan and attack sites. Nowadays a lot of that stuff can happen on the internet, they can give instructions, they can coordinate, they can recruit through these jihadi websites."
An international campaign against using the internet for militant purposes must be initiated by the UN, Mr Smith added. Meanwhile, the list of terrorism suspects that the UN and the EU keeps includes the names of people who are entirely innocent, the Council of Europe's legal committee has said.
Monday, November 12, 2007
The European Union trade commissioner, Peter Mandelson, has traveled to Washington to address congress on the intensifying debate over online gambling.
Washington should pay compensation to Europe for blocking the lucrative US gambling market to European online casinos, Mr Mandelson said. Earlier this year the World Trade Organisation (WTO) ruled in Antigua's favor when it accused the US of violating trade rules by not allowing Antiguan online casinos to operate in the US. Mr Mandelson was quoted by Reuters as stating: "What we need to see is a change in U.S. legislation that removes that discrimination against EU operators.
"It's not in the interest of American consumers to have good responsible competitors in this market excluded by regulatory mechanisms." If a member of the WTO "defaults" on its commitments then it should pay compensation, Mr Mandelson added. Gambling operators in the EU are demanding compensation of up to $100 billion.
Friday, November 9, 2007
The notorious Russian web hosting service Russian Business Network (RBN) has disappeared from the internet after it became the focus of intense media scrutiny.
RBN provided internet services to organized crime and cyber criminals, it has been reported. The company was called a "hub" of internet crime, including child pornography, identity theft, phishing scams and spam mail. The St Petersburg-based company always denied the allegations, however it has now abandoned most of its internet addresses.
A network architect at Trend Micro, Paul Ferguson, told PC World: "The routing information for their IP addresses has been withdrawn. "That's significant because while RBN has had connectivity issues in the past, then the routing [to its IP addresses] was still being advertised. This time, they've been voluntarily withdrawn."
Many have theorized that the outfit is merely relocating, with some hypothesizing that they are setting up in China, Taiwan or Turkey.
Wednesday, November 7, 2007
The House of Representatives foreign affairs committee has severely criticised Yahoo! for giving the Chinese government information which led to the arrest of journalist Shi Tao.
Furthermore, Yahoo! then went on to lie to congress about its actions during the affair, the committee said. Yahoo! chief executive Jerry Yang and general counsel Michael Callahan were both berated by the chairman of the committee, California Democrat Representative Tom Lantos.
He criticised Yahoo! for not making more efforts to aid the family of Shi Tao, who has been sentenced to ten years in prison for forwarding information about China's ban on reporting the anniversary of the Tiananmen Square crackdown. Rep Lantos said: "Why is it such a complicated issue to help a family whose breadwinner is in prison because of Yahoo's cooperation?
"While technologically and financially you are giants, morally you are pygmies." The two executives were then made to apologise to Shi Tao's mother, who was present at the hearing.
On Tuesday Microsoft made its Windows Live Suite available for download off the Internet for the first time.
The product consists of a group of internet applications which includes photo sharing, instant messenger, a family web-browsing application, email and so forth. Windows Live also has a range of built-in security features, according to Microsoft, that will protect users surfing the internet.
Sumeet Khanna, director of Windows Live, MSN Canada, said: "With these enhancements to Windows Live, we're integrating cool, new experiences with digital photos, event planning and sharing and web publishing with our popular services like Hotmail, Windows Live Messenger, and Windows Live Spaces." Now users will be able to bundle their online networks together and have a single user name and password, Mr Khanna added.
Microsoft's overall goal is to make its Windows Live product so advanced that users can perform all their desired internet-related tasks through it.
Monday, November 5, 2007
There is a new scam on the Internet where victims are sent emails purporting to be from the IRS asking for donations for victims of California's wildfires.
A warning has been issued by the IRS that the phishing scam is attempting to make victims hand over their personal and financial details. The IRS stated that it never sends unsolicited emails asking for financial information. Those that receive the fake email should forward it on to the IRS' website immediately the agency urged.
Richard Spires, IRS deputy commissioner for operations support, said: "People should exercise caution when they receive unsolicited e-mail or email from senders they don't know." Approximately 1,800 square kilometers were laid to waste and 14 people were killed by the extensive wildfires in California during the last few weeks.
The fires, which destroyed thousands of homes, were exacerbated by California's worst drought in 130 years.
An apology has been issued by a Yahoo! executive on the company's failure to inform US authorities about China's request for information on an internet user.
The information resulted in the imprisonment of the Chinese journalist Shi Tao, who has been sentenced to a decade behind bars. Executive vice president of the company, Michael Callahan, admitted to a House Foreign Relations panel last year that Yahoo! gave information to the Chinese government. Later, after learning why the request was made and the nature of the information in question, Mr Callahan did not tell US lawmakers.
He said: "I neglected to directly alert the committee of this new information, and that oversight led to a misunderstanding that I deeply regret and have apologized to the committee for creating." Next week Mr Callahan and Jerry Yang, Yahoo!'s chief executive are to appear before the House committee to answer more questions over the affair.
Friday, November 2, 2007
Internet search engine giant Google has teamed up with the popular social networking site MySpace, it has been announced.
MySpace will now be able to access Google applications, Google announced at a party it threw for software developers on Thursday night in Mountain View. Discussions about Google's OpenSocial platform began between the two companies over a year ago.
The move is seen as a strategy to try and combat the growing influence of Facebook, the second-largest social networking site in the world after MySpace. Google chief executive Eric Schmidt is quoted in USA Today as saying: "This is really the next step in the evolution of the web.
"We're ultimately in the business of people being happy online, and this helps do that." Microsoft recently paid $250 million for a 1.6 percent stake in Facebook, which values the social networking site at $15 billion.
Facebook was founded by Mark Zuckerberg in his dorm room at Harvard.
Thursday, November 1, 2007
There is a new Trojan being disseminated around the internet which attacks Apple's OS X system, according to the security company Intego.
Dubbed OSX.RSPlug.A, the Trojan comes disguised with a link to a website with pornographic videos on it. Once the link is followed, the user is told that Quicktime needs to download additional software in order to play the videos. The Trojan will then be installed.
Intego was unable to report on how far the Trojan has been spread so far. This is the first piece of malware to specificially target OS X. Bojan Zdrnja, an analyst at the Internet Storm Center, told Computerworld: "The whole Trojan is relatively simple and works almost exactly the same as its brother for Windows.
"The bad guys are taking Mac seriously now. This is a professional attempt at attacking Mac systems and they could have been much more damaging."
Wednesday, October 31, 2007
Internet search engine giant Google is reportedly in talks with both Sprint and Verizon about putting its software on mobile phones.
The Wall Street Journal reported earlier this week that talks between the companies are at an advanced stage. By entering into the wireless world, Google would have a new arena for its advertising. It already holds a dominant position in the lucrative sector of online advertising. Avi Greengart, an analyst for Current Analysis, told Reuters: "If Google is going to make a splash, it's going to have to say (to operators) 'offer our phone and we'll share the revenue'."
According to the report in the Wall Street Journal there will be an announcement in the next two weeks that "GPhone" software will be available to consumers by mid-2008. However, others have said that a deal with mobile operators is still a long way off. Use of other carriers' mobile networks is key to any Google wireless plans.
Tuesday, October 30, 2007
The popular internet phone service Skype has released its own cell phone, which can be used to make calls over the internet.
Dubbed the Skypephone, the device is the result of a collaboration between Skype and the mobile company 3. As well as being able to make VoIP calls, Skypephone will also be able to be used to make normal cell phone calls and access the internet. Michael van Swaaji, acting chief executive at Skype, is quoted in the Telegraph as saying: "Skype has now taken a giant step forward in the mobile arena.
"It takes an innovative operator like 3 to challenge traditional thinking and offer the kind of product other operators are still shying away from." Meanwhile, eBay recently stated that when it acquired Skype in 2005 for $2.6 billion it paid too much. Because Skype earnings that were forecast have yet to materialize, Skype will only take charge of $1.43 billion of the money.
Partnership Enables More Than 6 Million Musicians and Bands on MySpace to Sell Unlimited Merchandise Without Any Up-Front Production Costs or Inventory Risks
MySpace, the world's most popular social network, announced today a music merchandise deal with Zazzle, the only on-demand retail platform to offer billions of retail quality, one-of a kind products shipped within 24 hours. The distribution partnership will empower the more than 6 million musicians and bands on MySpace to sell unlimited music merchandise to the MySpace community instantly. The announcement also underscores MySpace's commitment to offer tools and services to the music industry that benefit artists and consumers alike.
Starting today, musicians and bands on MySpace will be able to create products and sell merchandise by putting the Zazzle Merch Booth widget on their MySpace profile. With Zazzle's new "Model Realview" technology, these artists can display their very own branded merchandise three dimensionally, on real models in their profile. The Zazzle Merch Booth widget will also enable placement of the artist's merchandise in a Zazzle gallery, their own websites, fan sites, blogs and more. MySpace users can also use Zazzle to create their own custom items for their favorite musicians and bands.
"MySpace will continue to evolve its industry leading music platform by developing new revenue models, partner integrations, and features that bring bands and fans together," Amit Kapur, VP of Business Development for MySpace. "Zazzle's on demand platform will enable music artists on MySpace to share merchandise with fans like never before."
Monday, October 29, 2007
Giving Never Sounded So Good ...
Bang & Olufsen, the global provider of exclusive, high quality audio and video products, announces the arrival of its new MP3 player, renowned for its cutting edge
style and dynamic CD sound quality. Additionally, Bang & Olufsen presents a variety of holiday gift ideas, including a stylish Bluetooth headset, robust computer loudspeakers, and a distinct home telephone that enables clear and concise communication.
BeoSound 6 New MP3 Player
For those who seek the ultimate sound quality while listening to their favorite digital music files, BeoSound 6 proves to be the top choice! Its superior sound performance rivals that of home audio systems. When compared to other MP3 players, BeoSound 6 has a very clear and pure CD sound quality, due to its high performance on signal to noise playback.
BeoSound 6 allows up to 40 hours of playback (which is double the market standard for battery life). It has a storage capacity of up to 1000 songs and can be utilized with any PC or MAC based operating systems -- making it the MP3 player of choice for those who value quality over quantity!
A woman in Connecticut has been charged with harassment and breach of peace after attempting to take revenge on her ex-boyfriend through the internet.
Pilar Stofega, 34, made up profiles of her ex-boyfriend's wife on an adult website and supplied her phone number and address. She also posted an old high school picture of the wife. Her intention was to break up the marriage, police have alleged. When strange men started calling the house, the man who had dated Stofega eight years ago did some online research and realized who was behind the plot.
After he gave Stofega's name to the police, she was arrested and admitted to being behind the profiles. She has been released on a $2,500 bond. The Associated Press quotes court documents as saying that Stofega enacted the plot in order to "be vindictive, knowing that the profiles would create marital problems."
A new spam campaign is using mp3 files to try and manipulate the stock market, according to the security software firm Sophos.
The mp3s that are being sent out disguise themselves as music from a variety of artists, such as Elvis and Carrie Underwood, but when opened, consist of a man's voice instructing the recipient to invest in a small company. Listeners are told to invest in Exit Only Incorporated, which is a company that runs a website where one can sell and buy cars.
Graham Cluley, a senior technology consultant at Sophos, said: "Users may click on the mp3 file expecting to hear Elvis, but they'll be all shook up when they discover it's actually a voice resembling Marvin the Paranoid Android droning on about a stock that is set to be the next big thing. "The spammers are already likely to have purchased stock on the cheap, and they are now trying to artificially inflate its price."
If the spammers do succeed in making the price of the stock go up, then they will then sell up all their stock at a profit, added Mr Cluley.
This method is known as a pump and dump scam.
Thursday, October 25, 2007
Verizon Helps Keep Evacuees, Responders Connected During Crisis
Verizon is stepping up with a $60,000 grant to assist Southern Californians forced from their homes amid devastating wildfires that have swept across the region.
Verizon is also providing evacuees with a range of free calling services - from cell phones to automatic call-forwarding - to help them stay connected during the natural disaster. "Ourhttp://www.blogger.com/img/gl.link.gif neighbors are in trouble and we want to help," said Verizon West Region President Tim McCallion. "Communicating in times of crisis is critical, and obviously many people need food, shelter and other basic necessities. We are providing an array of financial and operational support to those who have been displaced by these devastating fires, and we intend to help make the homeowners, business owners and relief workers' lives a little easier during this very trying time."
The Verizon Foundation will donate $60,000 to the American Red Cross for fire victims, with the grant to be divided equally among the Los Angeles, San Bernardino, San Diego and Riverside county chapters of the Red Cross.
Wednesday, October 24, 2007
Parents now have free access to cutting-edge parental control software from Florida-based BluePrint Data, the company has announced.
BluePrint is releasing its highly-rated Kidsnet Internet Parental Control product for free on the internet. Kidsnet Parental Control allows parents to check almost every website possible. It has reviews of 98 percent of all traffic on the web. And the reviews are done by highly-trained content specialists. In 2005 Consumer Reports gave Kidsnet Parental Control its highest rating of excellent, due to its "ease of use and flexibility".
Bob Dahlstrom, BluePrint Data's chief executive, said: "We are delighted to be able to provide parents, teachers, and others the opportunity to help protect children from the dangers posed by the internet and internet content." As well as parental control software, BluePrint also offers anti-spam and anti-virus products, along with web filtering. Meanwhile, a new web browser specifically for children and virtually hosted by Miss America, Lauren Nelson, has made its debut.
Communication giant Sprint Nextel has publicly restated that it will continue expanding its WiMax offerings.
The company's newly-elected chief executive, Paul Saleh, recently told USA Today that the ultimate goal is to build a nationwide WiMax network, allowing users to roam freely and still have internet access. Though Sprint's WiMax service, called Xohm, was largely the idea of the company's former chief executive Gary Forsee, it appears as if Sprint is sticking with it. Of the WiMax service, Mr Saleh told the paper: "This is where the market is going." Mr Forsee was ousted from the company following complaints from customers about poor service and the company generally experiencing a slowdown.
In order to build the ambitious nationwide network, Sprint is to collaborate with the WiMax company Clearwire. When it is initially rolled out Xohm is to cover Chicago, Washington and Baltimore, but plans are in place for a rapid expansion following that.