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Faster Forward: August 22, 2010 - August 28, 2010

Patent lawsuit du jour: Paul Allen versus the world (but not Microsoft or Amazon)

Stop me if you've read this before: A tech company you've never heard of, with no record of selling innovative new products to customers, has filed a sweeping lawsuit against a line-up of name-brand tech firms for allegedly infringing on its patents. A month ago, the patent plaintiff was NTP,...

By Rob Pegoraro  |  August 27, 2010; 4:45 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (6)
Categories:  Policy and politics  
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H.264 Web video (sort of) free, Web-video future still unclear

Want to know what software we'll all use to watch video online? You'll have to stay tuned for a while longer, notwithstanding the news yesterday that the most widely used Adobe Flash replacement would be free to use. That's because on the Web and elsewhere, "free" doesn't necessarily mean the...

By Rob Pegoraro  |  August 27, 2010; 12:45 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
Categories:  The Web , Video  
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The net-neutrality debate continues

In lieu of actual news breaking on this topic, people will still talk about what the government should -- or should not -- do to stop Internet providers from favoring some online applications and discouraging or disabling others. Surprise: Not everybody agrees with me. On Monday, Digital Society writer George...

By Rob Pegoraro  |  August 27, 2010; 12:27 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
Categories:  Mobile , Policy and politics , Recommended reading , Telecom , The business we have chosen  
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Virgin Mobile launches 'unlimited' data plan (with some limits?)

Virgin Mobile launches 'unlimited' data plan (with some limits?)

By Rob Pegoraro  |  August 26, 2010; 12:40 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (11)
Categories:  Mobile , Telecom  
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Google adds phone calling to Gmail

Google's Gmail isn't just a mailbox -- it now doubles as a phone. Users of Google's Web e-mail service can now call any phone in the U.S. or Canada for free (and make international calls for almost free) from within their browser. Google announced this feature in a blog post...

By Rob Pegoraro  |  August 25, 2010; 1:28 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (36)
Categories:  E-mail , Mobile , Telecom  
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Apple to rent TV shows for 99 cents each?

Apple may rent episodes of TV shows for 99 cents each instead of selling them for $1.99 or $2.99 a pop, according to two reports--which also indicate that the Cupertino, Calif., company will finally update its Apple TV media receiver. Bloomberg News's story says Apple is negotiating with News Corp....

By Rob Pegoraro  |  August 25, 2010; 11:10 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (21)
Categories:  TV , Video  
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Playing with Sony's PlayStation Move controller

As anyone who's seen me try to survive in Halo can attest, I am not exactly an avid video gamer. One reason: I can't memorize button combos to save my onscreen life. So I was interested in the chance to try out Sony's new PlayStation Move controller. The Move, which...

By Rob Pegoraro  |  August 24, 2010; 5:40 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Gadgets , Games  
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Dell's death-wish Android Aero

I thought something was missing when I read the news release that arrived this morning from Dell, touting a new smartphone running Google's Android operating system. The specifications listed there made its Aero ($99.99 for new or renewing AT&T customers) look impressive enough, but they left out one detail: what...

By Rob Pegoraro  |  August 24, 2010; 4:55 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (6)
Categories:  Mobile  
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Rob Pegoraro blog post mentions Lady Gaga

If you were hoping for evidence that Twitter is making all of us smarter, please don't read this post. According to TechCrunch, the title of most-followed-Twitter-user passed "sometime last night" from Britney Spears to Lady Gaga. No, I would not have known of this momentous development were it not for...

By Rob Pegoraro  |  August 24, 2010; 2:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (5)
Categories:  Digital culture , Social media  
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Philadelphia 'blogger fee' turns into blog fodder

Money is short and times are hard, so municipal governments have to look everywhere for the funds to keep cops on the beat and buses on the street. Or so one would think from the news out of Philadelphia, where the city has been asking bloggers with any sign of...

By Rob Pegoraro  |  August 23, 2010; 3:51 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (12)
Categories:  Digital culture , Policy and politics , The business we have chosen  
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Checking into your own home? Count me out

After all the fuss people have made over the privacy implications of Facebook's new Places feature--not to mention such earlier check-in services as Foursquare--the last thing I expected to see over the weekend was friends using that option to publish their own homes' locations. And yet this morning, inspecting recent...

By Rob Pegoraro  |  August 23, 2010; 11:27 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (18)
Categories:  Location awareness , Privacy , Social media  
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PostPoints tip: Grade gadgets by one-handed usability

Considering which of two gadgets to get? Try going to a store, then picking up and using each one single-handed. If you can't get the device's basic functions to work with one appendage otherwise occupied--for extra credit, with your dominant hand busy--you're likely to find it tricky to use on...

By Rob Pegoraro  |  August 23, 2010; 11:23 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
Categories:  Tips  
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