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Archive: March 2007

A New Way To Juice Up Your Mobile Phone

One of the reasons I have thousands - instead of just hundreds - of digital photos in my personal library is because my camera can be powered by standard, easy-to-find AA batteries. When the primary battery starts to lose juice, a couple of AA's in the camera bag is all...

By Sam Diaz | March 30, 2007; 11:30 AM ET | Comments (2)

Maps With a Higher Profile

Ever since Google, Microsoft and Yahoo made maps and satellite images available online, geospatial products have enjoyed a higher profile. People use them to find driving directions and plot vacation routes, swoop into foreign cities and fly over oceans. But they're also used to conduct research and plan for emergencies....

By Kim Hart | March 29, 2007; 6:30 PM ET | Comments (2)

Tune Into Our Podcast On Thursdays

The inaugural Washington Post Technology Podcast launches today -- and our goal is to provide listeners with a closer look at the news and columns that you find in the Washington Post and on washingtonpost.com. Download the podcast here. Fast Forward columnist Rob Pegoraro, left, and deputy technology editor Sam...

By Sam Diaz | March 29, 2007; 1:09 PM ET | Comments (0)

Connecting Soldiers--and Their Toothbrushes?

The Internet is running out of space, and it's got Northern Virginia technology companies--especially those that work with the government-- abuzz. They're trying to fix a big problem. Namely, all the existing net addresses (called IP addresses) will be used up within the next four years. The upgrade basically almost...

By Kim Hart | March 29, 2007; 6:00 AM ET | Comments (0)

When Candidates Ask, People Answer

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote a story with Jose Antonio Vargas about the different ways technology and the Internet were impacting the way candidates in the 2008 President election were interacting with voters. Yahoo told me about the use of its Answers service becoming a popular way for...

By Sam Diaz | March 28, 2007; 1:00 PM ET | Comments (0)

A Venture Capital Social Network

Over the last few weeks, several large companies have announced plans to incorporate social networks into their business plans. For example, Anheuser-Busch, the proprieter of Budweiser and other beers, has signed a deal with social networking site MingleNow to promote beer-drinking to the average Joe. The campaign, called "clink," encourages...

By Kim Hart | March 28, 2007; 11:05 AM ET | Comments (0)

FiOS To Launch Washington TV Channel

Two years ago, Verizon began rolling out its fiber-optic service, or FiOS, in the Washington area and across the country. Now, FiOS is launching some original programming. FiOS combines consumers' telephone, television and high-speed Internet services in a "triple-play" competitive counter to cable and satellite television providers and phone companies....

By Frank Ahrens | March 28, 2007; 6:00 AM ET | Comments (0)

Bum Rush the Charts: More Numbers

I got an e-mail from Paul Durham, Black Lab's singer, over the weekend. As you'll recall, a song from the band was used as part of an unusual online campaign made by podcasters last week. Here's what he had to say: To me, one interesting thing is that five hours...

By Mike Musgrove | March 27, 2007; 10:30 AM ET | Comments (0)

R.E.M. and Net Neutrality

It's hard to make net neutrality sexy. Sure, it affects everyone -- will access to the Internet remain free or will companies be allowed to erect toll booths for entry? It's important stuff and the minute that the 'Net no longer is free, and users wonder why their favorite Web...

By Frank Ahrens | March 27, 2007; 6:00 AM ET | Comments (0)

Internet Review for Patents Draws Near

With the agency responsible for issuing patents now planning to throw open its review process to the Internet, the latest word is that this wiki-type experiment is expected to start around June 1. New York Law School Professor Beth Simone Noveck, who heads a team designing the pilot project,...

By Alan Sipress | March 26, 2007; 4:54 PM ET | Comments (0)

Winners of the You Tube Awards

This morning, YouTube announced the winners of their inaugural YouTube Awards - and, as expected, these are mostly just ordinary people (who have since gained some celebrity status) doing wacky and creative things with the Webcams and camcorders rolling. Last week, when NBC and News Corp. announced an online video...

By Sam Diaz | March 26, 2007; 11:59 AM ET | Comments (0)

YouTube Turns On The Camera

Since I started following YouTube about a year ago, I've always wondered who decides which videos get featured on the homepage. As many YouTubers know, getting your video placed on the homepage can catapult one videomaker from obscurity into the user-generated hall of fame (which mostly translates to bragging rights...

By Sara Goo | March 26, 2007; 6:00 AM ET | Comments (2)

An iTunes Feat

The band Black Lab got a spike in iTunes sales for its track "Mine Again" yesterday, thanks to the blogger/podcaster campaign we wrote about Thursday. The idea, briefly, was to get music fans to buy copies of "Mine Again" on Thursday and get the song on Apple's iTunes bestseller list....

By Mike Musgrove | March 23, 2007; 1:44 PM ET | Comments (1)

The World of Widgets

If you've ever checked out a page on MySpace or Facebook or one of the other customizable Internet hot spots where teenagers and college students hang out, you've likely seen "the widgets." These are the little add-on items that litter Web pages. YouTube videos are among the most easy to...

By Sam Diaz | March 22, 2007; 8:37 AM ET | Comments (2)

District Start-Ups Grow Fastest in Nation

Venture capital-backed companies in Washington, D.C., showed the fastest revenue growth in the country between 2003 and 2005, according to a study released today by the National Venture Capital Association. Compared to other states, District-based companies that received venture capital generated relatively low revenues, with $2.2 billion in 2005. But...

By Kim Hart | March 21, 2007; 3:53 PM ET | Comments (0)

Operation Double Trouble

In large parts of Asia, aficionados of American cinema get bragging rights if they're the first on their block to put their hands on a newly released movie. Often, they succeed even before the film is out in their country. Some of the DVDs are copies covertly recorded with video...

By Alan Sipress | March 21, 2007; 6:00 AM ET | Comments (1)

Google's Got a New Ad Strategy

Today, Google announced that they are testing out a new ad model called pay-per-action. Advertisers who now sign up with Google to place their tiny text ads on thousands of Web sites (labeled as "Ads by Google" at the bottom, top or margins of the page) currently pay Google for...

By Sara Goo | March 20, 2007; 4:34 PM ET | Comments (1)

You've Got Voice Mail

For many people - myself included - there's something intriguing about automatically sending voice mail messages to my inbox and then clicking a mouse to listen, instead of going through the "Press 1 to do this," "Press 2 to do that" commands. Voice mail is one of those things you...

By Sam Diaz | March 20, 2007; 12:00 PM ET | Comments (4)

Microsoft Builds Bridges with Venture Capitalists

Microsoft knows advertisers have a hard time reaching males between the ages of 18 and 34. So the company has started selling ad space inside its XBox games. Corporate logos flash on animated billboards and car companies pay to have their newest models on the streets--all in Microsoft's efforts to...

By Kim Hart | March 20, 2007; 6:00 AM ET | Comments (0)

Snail Mail E-Mail

It was deja vu for me the other day when I received a pitch from a company called Document Command about a service called Remote Control Mail. Years ago, I used a service called Paytrust, which basically converted my paper bills into a digital format so I could view them...

By Sam Diaz | March 19, 2007; 12:08 PM ET | Comments (3)

Local Tech Execs Open Wallets for Obama

Presidential hopeful Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) is tapping into a new and lucrative fundraising source: Washington's tech community. About 200 of the area's most prominent names from the telecommunications and media worlds attended a private fundraiser for Obama last Thursday at the Chevy Chase, Md., home of Reed Hundt, former...

By Kim Hart | March 19, 2007; 6:00 AM ET | Comments (1)

Playing The Election Game

I spent most of yesterday at George Washington University for the Politics Online Conference, co-sponsored by Google and Washingtonpost.Newsweek Interactive - the Web site of the Washington Post that is a separate company from the newspaper. The focus of the two-day conference, which continues today, is about the influence of...

By Sam Diaz | March 16, 2007; 3:01 PM ET | Comments (0)

Changing Cast at Post I.T

Change is afoot with the technology team. At the beginning of the year I took over as technology editor, a job that leaves me with no time to blog anymore. So I'm officially leaving Post I.T. Not that you'll miss me: We're adding a new voice in the form of...

By Yuki Noguchi | March 16, 2007; 6:41 AM ET | Comments (0)

Stanford Helps Fight Alzheimer's with PS3

Scientists at Stanford University are hoping that video game fans will soon donate their PlayStation 3s to the good cause of finding a cure for diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's. With the next software update for the game console, PS3 owners will be given an option to click an...

By Mike Musgrove | March 15, 2007; 5:37 PM ET | Comments (0)

Microsoft To Open Xbox Live to PC Users

Microsoft announced plans this morning to open up its "Xbox Live" service to PC owners who don't own the Xbox 360 game console. Like to play Halo 2 on the PC against your friends? Starting May 8, you'll also be able to connect with other PC game fans using the...

By Mike Musgrove | March 14, 2007; 12:18 PM ET | Comments (0)

No Olive Branch for the IP Wars

The big news in the tech world today is the $1 billion lawsuit by entertainment conglomerate Viacom against the video Web site YouTube and its parent company, Google, for allegedly infringing copyrights by showing television programs online without permission. But as the lawyers struggle to define intellectual property rights...

By Alan Sipress | March 13, 2007; 2:25 PM ET | Comments (0)

God of War Returns to the PS2

God of War II is out today... For those of you who don't play video games, the original God of War was one of the best-reviewed and best-selling games for the PlayStation 2 a couple of years ago. It was about an angry Spartan warrior guy named Kratos in ancient...

By Mike Musgrove | March 13, 2007; 12:13 PM ET | Comments (0)

Giveaway mp3 Players

It is a rule of consumer electronics that early adopters pay a higher price for gadgets than latecomers and, in fact, the early adopters probably pay for the lower prices enjoyed by latecomers. Now, apparently, mp3 players are so cheap, companies are giving them away as vehicles for video press...

By Frank Ahrens | March 9, 2007; 3:52 PM ET | Comments (0)

South Park: Now in High Def

Ok, I like "South Park," and I like downloading shows and movies on the ol' Xbox 360. But I gotta say I'm a little confused by a promotional e-mail I just got from Microsoft. A high definition version of the South Park episode "Good Times With Weapons" is now available...

By Mike Musgrove | March 9, 2007; 12:12 PM ET | Comments (8)

Play Fetch or PlayStation?

It's easy to point a finger at video games when we're looking for a scapegoat to some of society's woes - obesity, violent tendencies, lack of social interaction. But can we really blame the GameBoy or the Wii for a decline in pet ownership? When the Australian Companion Animals Council...

By Sam Diaz | March 8, 2007; 6:00 AM ET | Comments (1)

Sony Brings the PS3 "Home"

Sony gave a look at a funky virtual world they've got in development for PlayStation 3 owners today. Called "Home," it's an online world designed to work as a meeting place for PS3 owners, complete with customizable virtual apartments. The idea is that gamers will meet, hang out and socialize...

By Mike Musgrove | March 7, 2007; 3:52 PM ET | Comments (0)

Gates: U.S. Shutting Out Generation of Einsteins

Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates brought his dire warnings about the future of American competitiveness to the Senate this morning, telling Sen. Edward "Ted" M. Kennedy's Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions that tight visa policies are costing the United States some of the world's brightest thinkers. "America has always...

By Alan Sipress | March 7, 2007; 11:30 AM ET | Comments (85)

Celebrity Magazine 'Premiere' Goes All-Digi

Premiere magazine, which for 20 years applied some rigorous journalism to celebrity and entertainment reporting, will stop publishing an ink-on-paper copy and move entirely to the Web and mobile devices, the mag's publisher said this week. Hachette Filipacchi Media U.S. , which also publishes Car and Driver, Elle and Shock,...

By Frank Ahrens | March 7, 2007; 6:00 AM ET | Comments (6)

Blogs, Blogs, Everywhere

Could Web logs be headed for a slowdown - even when there's still 99 million of them that I haven't had a chance to read? I remember first reading a while back that the number of blogs was set to peak sometime in the middle of 2007 but was reminded...

By Sam Diaz | March 6, 2007; 12:05 PM ET | Comments (7)

Best Buy's Pricing Problems

Best Buy is answering questions from the Connecticut Attorney General because of its alleged use of an internal Web site that lists higher prices for electronics than advertised on the World Wide Web. Consumers complained that the lower prices they saw on the Web site were suddenly higher when employees...

By Sam Diaz | March 6, 2007; 8:04 AM ET | Comments (25)

Mobiletours: New Dial-a-Tour Service for DC Tourists

The Washington Monument is just a little over 555 feet high. Pierre L'Enfant originally envisioned building digs for the president that would have been four times the size of what we know as the White House. Launched Monday, there's a new service is designed to let tourists dial their cell...

By Mike Musgrove | March 6, 2007; 6:22 AM ET | Comments (2)

Dispatches from the IP Wars

As corporate America has learned to do business in today's Idea Economy, so have American lawyers. Intellectual property is becoming ever more central to the success of business. So it's not surprising that court battles over patents and other forms of intellectual property have increased dramatically over the last...

By Alan Sipress | March 5, 2007; 1:57 PM ET | Comments (0)

Google reveals a little more on click fraud

Google has always claimed that click fraud is not a problem, at least for Google. Yet it never really provided any numbers indicating the volume of click fraud the company detected or how much money Google refunded to advertisers because of the problem. So it was anyone's guess as to...

By Sara Goo | March 1, 2007; 6:54 AM ET | Comments (0)

 

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