12/7/2006

Google begins testing radio ad service

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Google Inc. has started testing a long-awaited radio advertising service that represents the Internet search leader’s most elaborate attempt yet at expanding its financial clout beyond the Web.

The test announced Thursday will help sell advertising on more than 700 radio stations in more than 200 U.S. metropolitan markets. Google hopes to eventually sign up more than 5,000 stations, according to documents shown potential advertisers.

For now, at least, Google will lag well behind other radio advertising placement services like Softwave Media Exchange, which says it has enlisted more than 1,500 stations with a combined daily audience of more than 9 million listeners.

Source: AP

Wii remote smashing televisions

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Nintendo has some cautionary advice for players of its Wii video game console: when waving the controller, use the wrist strap, keep your palms dry and, whatever you do, don’t let go.

The Wii has been pitched as a cheap alternative to pricier machines from Microsoft and Sony, but some gamers complain they are facing unexpected costs after losing their grip on the console’s remote control and smashing their televisions and other appliances.

Wii games are played with a motion-sensing controller that is waved, swung and twisted to direct the on-screen action.

Although the controller comes with a wrist strap, reports of damage caused by snapping straps have been cropping up on video game Web sites.

Source: techrepublic

Adobe Reader 8 available for download

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Adobe Systems has announced the release of Adobe Reader 8, the latest major release of their free Portable Document Format (PDF) readers software for Mac OS X and Windows.

New features in Adobe Reader 8 include support for Adobe Acrobat Connect, an online collaboration service that works using Flash. A new streamlined interface features user-customizable toolbars, and Reader users can fill and submit forms, save data and digitally sign documents. The software also features graphics acceleration on supported systems.

Source: Yahoo

Greece bans cellphone use in schools

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Greece’s education ministry has banned mobile phones in schools in response to a flurry of cases where pupils used their cells to film sexual activity and violent behavior.

“Pupils are not allowed to have mobile phones in their possession inside school grounds,” the ministry said in a circular disseminated to primary and secondary schools.

“In exceptional cases where a pupil has a mobile phone, (he or she) is obliged to keep it turned off” on pain of sanctions, the circular said.

In the past weeks, educators and psychologists have argued that the videotaping of unruly behavior encourages further disorder, with pupils in some cases competing to create increasingly shocking footage.

Source: AFP

Sony Forms FED Display Venture

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Sony Corp. said on Thursday it would establish a joint venture with a technology fund to develop a type of flat panel called field emission display.

Sony said it and Tokyo-based Technology Carve-out Investment Fund (TCI) would invest a total of 2.5 billion yen ($21.7 million) in the venture, which will start operations on Dec. 18 with about 30 employees.

Sony will take a 36.5 percent stake in the venture with TCI investing the remaining 63.5 percent.

Field emission display (FED) technology was invented in the 1970s as a possible alternative to the traditional cathode-ray tube TV but has never been commercialised, losing out to liquid-crystal displays and plasma displays in the flat panel race.

Toshiba Corp. and Canon Inc. are working together on a technology similar to FED called surface-conduction electron-emitter display (SED), aiming to compete with LCD and plasma technology in the fast-growing flat TV market.

FED and SED technology can be use to develop flat displays that are bright, consume relatively little electricity and have wide viewing angles, but it remains unclear whether they will ever be commercially viable.

Source: extremetech

Spyware fighters go after MP3 search site

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Two antispyware watchdogs are urging federal regulators to take action against a music search Web site that they say is a front for malicious software.

FastMP3Search.com.ar, registered in Argentina, advertises itself as a search service for music files, but instead tricks people into loading a host of malicious applications onto their PC and opens computers up to further cyberattacks, according to StopBadware.org and the Center for Democracy and Technology.

“In the past year, we’ve come across dozens of malicious programs available on hundreds of Web sites, and without question, the FastMP3Search.com.ar plug-in tops our list of the worst actors,” said John Palfrey, co-director of the StopBadware coalition.

Source: News.com

Monster U.S. online job index rises to 175 in Nov

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

The Monster Employment Index, a gauge of U.S. online job demand, rose in November, due mainly to higher demand for year-end seasonal workers in the transportation, shipping and warehousing industries.

The index improved to 175 last month from 172 in October, rising for the first time in three months, Monster said.

The index showed its lowest annual growth rate since its inception in October 2003. The weakening year-over-year growth was consistent with recent data suggesting slowing U.S. economic growth in the second half of 2006, Monster said.

Source: Reuters

3 convicted in Microsoft software scam

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Three people accused of scamming Microsoft Corp. by buying sharply discounted software intended for educational institutions and reselling it to nonacademic customers were convicted on conspiracy and fraud charges, federal prosecutors said.

Mirza Ali, 59, and his wife, Sameena Ali, 52, of Fremont, and Keith Griffen, 55, of Oregon City, Ore., were convicted in Oakland federal court last month.

Federal prosecutors Wednesday said the trio illegally bought and resold more than $29 million worth of Microsoft software between 1997 and 2001. They allegedly formed front companies and bought existing corporations to take advantage of a program offering reduced prices on software if it’s resold to academic institutions. Redmond, Wash.-based Microsoft said it lost more than $60 million as a result of the scam.

Source: AP

ICANN Reviews Revoking Outdated Suffixes

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Over the past few years, the Internet has seen new domain names such as “.eu” for Europe and “.travel” for the travel industry. Now, the key oversight agency is looking to get rid of some.

Meeting in Sao Paulo, Brazil, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers began accepting public comments this week on how best to revoke outdated suffixes, primarily assigned to countries that no longer exist.

The Soviet Union’s “.su” is the leading candidate for deletion, although the former Yugoslav republics of Serbia and Montenegro are transitioning from “.yu” to their own country codes. A Google search generated millions of “.su” and “.yu” sites.

East Timor now uses “.tl,” though about 150,000 sites remain under its older code, “.tp.”

Also obsolete is Great Britain’s “.gb,” which produced no sites on Google. Britons typically use “.uk” for the United Kingdom.

Source: AP

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