Post I.T. - Washington Post Technology Blog Frank Ahrens Sara Goo Sam Diaz Mike Musgrove Alan Sipress Yuki Noguchi Post I.T.
Tech Podcast
The Bloggers
Subscribe to this Blog

Archive: January 2008

More Insightful Search

Google has become a household name, but several firms here at DEMO want more depth and detail out of a search engine. They want results to be tailored to your own personality, using the context found in your online profiles and preferences as a guide. First up is Delver, which...

By Kim Hart | January 31, 2008; 3:02 PM ET | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

Minimum Price for FCC's Airwaves Met

A bid this morning on a coveted portion of the wireless airwaves up for auction by the Federal Communications Commission met the agency's minimum target price, which could mean success for a drive to create a nationwide network that would be open to any device or software to work on...

By | January 31, 2008; 12:12 PM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Faster Paths For Streaming Videos

Earlier this week, eMarketer reported that 70 percent of all Internet users watch online video. But your average uploaded video is considered old-fashioned. Now it's all about streaming live video to consumers anytime, anywhere. But streaming high-quality video takes a lot of bandwidth, and live feeds often get interrupted on...

By Kim Hart | January 31, 2008; 8:05 AM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Who's Actually Watching All Those Online Videos?

With the explosion of online video, thanks to the success of YouTube, the big question is how to track the videos as they are shared around the Web and how to measure their audiences. Two companies showed off ways to keep tabs on what happens to videos, in an effort...

By Kim Hart | January 30, 2008; 5:00 PM ET | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Even More Ways to Find Friends on the Web

Just when you thought nothing else could be added to the social networking scene, a few companies may surprise you. DEMO producer Chris Shipley said this is the last year social web applications will be broken out as its own category. "This is becoming so mainstream so quickly, that it...

By Kim Hart | January 30, 2008; 1:09 PM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Device Chargers Go Green

Toting around multiple electronic chargers has become the great curse of the digital age. On this trip I brought along four chargers: one each for my laptop, Blackberry, cellphone and iPod. They waste power and quickly end up in landfills. Green Plug wants to change that with its new universal...

By Kim Hart | January 30, 2008; 11:20 AM ET | Comments (6) | TrackBack (6)

A Video Social Network--The CNN of Your Friends?

Lots of companies are experimenting with creating video conversations on the Web. Seesmic is a social network that lets members talk to each other via video. Bloggers have dubbed Seesmic the "Twitter of video" because many members post quick messages about what they're doing, ask a question of other members,...

By Kim Hart | January 30, 2008; 3:30 AM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Adding New Dimensions to Virtual Worlds

Since launching at the DEMO show last fall, SceneCaster's three-dimensional worlds have become popular hangouts on the Web. People can create their own virtual scenes, games, abstract art, cartoons or homes interiors using SceneCaster's technology and then share them through their Facebook profiles. At this show, the company launched a...

By Kim Hart | January 29, 2008; 6:25 PM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (1)

Get Travel Advice From Locals

CitiPort.net would have come in pretty handy when I was trying to plan my weekend in San Francisco. The newly launched site from Taiwan aims to bridge the gap between travel sites like Travelocity.com and local rating sites like Yelp. CitiPort lets you rate and recommend sites, hotels, restaurants, bars...

By Kim Hart | January 29, 2008; 5:38 PM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Merging Your Mobile and Online Worlds

A handful of companies here are trying to find ways to use video and voice to communicate across computers and mobile devices. A few fell a bit flat with the audience due to technical difficulties and hard-to-use interfaces. But a few got some good nods from the crowd. One is...

By Kim Hart | January 29, 2008; 1:31 PM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Get Paid to Look For Job, Even if You're Not Looking

NotchUp.com is a new job-search Web site that helps companies find talented workers who aren't actually searching for a job. After all, the best workers aren't posting their resumes on Monster.com or Craigslist--they're busy climbing the corporate ladder in their current job. But at the right price, you may be...

By Kim Hart | January 29, 2008; 1:20 PM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (1)

The Announcements Keep Coming, Even Before the First Presentation

DEMO kicked off only a few hours ago, but the participating companies haven't wasted any time in announcing their latest products. Search company Eyealike is unveiling a service that will find copyrighted material in videos and images embedded in all sorts of Web sites, especially ones heavy with user-generated content...

By Kim Hart | January 29, 2008; 10:13 AM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Start-ups Line Up to Launch at DEMO

Yesterday marked the beginning of DEMO, the three-day conference that serves as a launching pad for young tech companies. Think of it as a Consumer Electronics Show exclusively for start-ups. Thousands of companies vie for booth space here in Palm Desert, Calif. This year, 76 companies came from as far...

By Kim Hart | January 29, 2008; 7:30 AM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Live Video Finds New Uses on the Web

I drove to Palo Alto this morning to pay a visit to the guys at Ustream.tv, a start-up that streams live broadcasts across the Internet. It's a similar concept to YouTube in that it lets people create and share videos with a wide audience. What makes Ustream different, according to...

By Kim Hart | January 25, 2008; 9:42 AM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (2)

Life Is Rough At The GooglePlex

I paid a visit to Googleplex yesterday. And yes, everything you've heard is true. The toilet seats are heated. There are comfy couches in front of huge TV screens. And the Google meals are quite tasty. There are blue bicycles parked in front of the main building, complete with a...

By Kim Hart | January 24, 2008; 6:17 PM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Visiting YouTube to Talk About Mobile Video

I swung by YouTube's offices yesterday to get a quick peak of what they're working on these days. I had good timing--YouTube was in the process of making an announcement about its mobile video platform. Cellphone users will now be able to access YouTube's entire library of videos on their...

By Kim Hart | January 24, 2008; 3:13 PM ET | Comments (1) | TrackBack (1)

What Economy? What Traffic?

I'm exploring Silicon Valley for the first time this week, making the rounds to meet a bunch of venture capitalists and buzz-worthy companies. Despite all the gloomy talk about the sour economy that has dominated business circles on the East Coast, this area almost seems a bit insulated--even if it's...

By Kim Hart | January 24, 2008; 10:11 AM ET | Comments (1) | TrackBack (1)

Ralph de la Vega Opens Up

Today I had the chance to sit down with Ralph de la Vega, president and CEO of AT&T's wireless division. He didn't have a lot of time to chat, but he shared with me some of the big issues the company will be tackling this year. The debate about "open"...

By Kim Hart | January 15, 2008; 6:52 PM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (2)

HD DVD: Anybody Have Early Adopter Pains?

The recent announcement that Warner Home Video is giving up on HD DVD and opting instead to support the Blu-ray format created a huge wave of speculation that this little format war -- over which video technology will replace the standard DVD -- may be winding to a close. But...

By Mike Musgrove | January 15, 2008; 5:06 PM ET | Comments (8) | TrackBack (20)

FCC Seeks Comments on Comcast

This afternoon the Federal Communications Commission formally asked for input on Comcast's Internet management policies, specifically regarding how it handles peer-to-peer traffic. It's the first official step the commission has taken to investigate the cable giant, which has said that it sometimes slows down traffic to file-sharing sites such as...

By Kim Hart | January 14, 2008; 6:45 PM ET | Comments (12) | TrackBack (2)

CES Recap: A Little Smaller, But Still Leaves Me Wrecked

Well, it's the last day of CES 2008 and the show is still going strong. But the taxi lines heading to the airport are growing pretty quickly. Last night I had a quick chat with Albert Lin, an analyst with American Technology Research and a CES veteran. This being my...

By Kim Hart | January 10, 2008; 2:05 PM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Contacting Me Through Email

In response to the previous comment: Those who wish to contact me can do so by clicking here. Thanks!!...

By Kim Hart | January 10, 2008; 12:20 PM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Becoming a Real Guitar Hero (The Video)

Here's a video that goes with Tuesday's posting about some new technology to help with your Guitar Hero skills:...

By Kim Hart | January 10, 2008; 12:00 PM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (1)

Oops!

It's tough typing blog entries on my BlackBerry. Yesterday, in my haste I got the names of two companies wrong. The Swedish cellphone company that sells touchscreen phones is actually called Neonode, and the company helping them bring the phones to the U.S. market is DMC. Thanks to Danielle at...

By Kim Hart | January 10, 2008; 11:41 AM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Slinging Media Around Still Pleases The Crowd

Two years ago, Sling Media -- one of that year's biggest hits -- had a small booth at this show. Now the company, which was recently acquired by Dish Network's parent company EchoStar, had a pretty impressive display that always seemed to be crowded. Sling Media became known for...

By Kim Hart | January 10, 2008; 11:04 AM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (1)

IPod Accessories, Some Of Which Are A Scream

When I stopped walking around the show floor long enough to realize how hungry I was, I grabbed a hotdog from a concession stand at the Sands Expo Center and started talking talking to a guy sitting next to me at the table. I asked about his company, called Zagg....

By Kim Hart | January 10, 2008; 9:06 AM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

CES for Your iPod

If it's Thursday, it's time for the Tech Podcast. This week's report focuses on the show and answers another reader question. Listen to it here or subscribe via XML or on iTunes....

By washingtonpost.com Editors | January 10, 2008; 7:00 AM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

If You Build A Social Network, Will Advertisers Come?

I took a break from the floor to listen to a panel discussion on social networks and user-generated content. After the panelists waxed philosophical for a bit about how social networks are enabling our age-old desire to connect to other humans, they got down to the bottom line. Advertising is...

By Kim Hart | January 9, 2008; 5:47 PM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (1)

A Screen That's More Sensitive To The Touch

While I walking through the displays of tech giants like Panasonic and Samsung, I came across a company I'd never heard of called Neonode. It's a Swedish cellphone manufacturer that says it's enjoyed some success in Europe but has had a tough time breaking into the U.S. market against much-larger...

By Kim Hart | January 9, 2008; 4:29 PM ET | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Comcast's New Video Offerings: Portable DVR and Fancast

Comcast and Panasonic yesterday announced a new media device that works like a conventional digital-video recorder in the home, but that can also be taken on the road to serve as a portable media player. They call it the AnyPlay portable DVR, which will be available in early 2009. Comcast...

By Kim Hart | January 9, 2008; 3:09 PM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Some Tiny Technology

The familiar mantras of the Consumer Electronics Show -- Bigger! Better! Faster! Cheaper! -- continue to fly around the showroom floor this year. For example, you can catch a glimpse of Panasonic's 150-inch plasma TV, or Sony's ultra-thin flatscreens. Some of the things that caught my eye, though, are the...

By Kim Hart | January 9, 2008; 1:00 PM ET | Comments (2) | TrackBack (1)

Public Interest Groups React to FCC Chair's Speech

When FCC Chairman Kevin Martin spoke here about his views on whether Comcast was blocking content from consumers by interfering with peer-to-peer traffic, he indicated the commission would look into the situation to determine if Comcast really was discriminating against certain sites or if the cable giant is within its...

By Kim Hart | January 9, 2008; 11:44 AM ET | Comments (50) | TrackBack (0)

FCC Chair Opens Up On Wireless

Federal Communications Commission chief Kevin Martin just finished a discussion with Gary Shapiro, chief executive of the Consumer Electronics Association, about his policy priorities for the coming year. Martin spent a lot of time stressing the importance of wireless technologies, especially since the auction of valuable 700 megahertz spectrum will...

By Kim Hart | January 8, 2008; 6:05 PM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Writers Guild Hits CES; CES Hits Back

At the heart of the ongoing writers strike is the issue of whether writers should get a cut of of online and digitally distributed content. So, what better place to bring up the matter than at CES? "They tell us there's no money in online entertainment," reads a flier that...

By Mike Musgrove | January 8, 2008; 4:15 PM ET | Comments (4) | TrackBack (3)

Gaming Your Way To Becoming A Real Guitar Hero

Love Guitar Hero? How about playing with a real guitar? Music Wizard Group has created a game that lets you have all the glory of Guitar Hero, but also helps you learn how to play the instrument. You plug a small device into an acoustic or electric guitar and...

By Kim Hart | January 8, 2008; 2:24 PM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (1)

Be The Better (Animated) You

A company called Big Stage lets you be your better self. Here's how it works: You take three digital photos of your face from different angles and then import them into the company's software. Then you can put a funky hairstyle on yourself, glasses, or a variety of expressions. The...

By Kim Hart | January 8, 2008; 12:21 PM ET | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Searching in Three Dimensions

I met a company called SpaceTime last night that offers 3-dimensional search. It's an application you download to your desktop, and it then acts like any other browser. If you want to look at YouTube clips, it scrolls through them in 3-D form, without having to download them first. If...

By Kim Hart | January 8, 2008; 10:14 AM ET | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Ladies And Gentlemen: The World's Smallest Laptop

At the Qualcomm booth, one thing that caught my eye is what the company claims is the world's smallest laptop. It's small alright, looking more like an oversized cellphone than a computer. The keyboard slides out from behind the screen. It weighs one pound and the company today introduced...

By Kim Hart | January 7, 2008; 7:50 PM ET | Comments (6) | TrackBack (0)

A Rare Find: Tranquil Space

In a sea of marketing mayhem here, I came across a corner of tranquility. Qualcomm often has among the largest displays on the show floor, competing against every other device manufacturer trying to snag some attention. This year, though, the company took a different approach to lure people with an...

By Kim Hart | January 7, 2008; 6:45 PM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (1)

Skype Shows Sony Users It's Got Game

Users of Sony's mobile gaming gadget got a surprise treat among the announcements at the show. The game device, which already featured wireless Internet connectivity features, will now be able to double as a phone. PSP owners who start an account with the popular voice-over-Internet service Skype will be able...

By Mike Musgrove | January 7, 2008; 6:02 PM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Chief Yahoo Jerry Yang Holds Forth On Mobile

Yahoo is trying to do for mobile devices what it did for the Internet-connected computer a decade ago. Today during a keynote speech here at CES, Yahoo chief executive Jerry Yang made a slew of announcements geared toward attracting eyeballs on cellphones. The biggest news is that the company is...

By Kim Hart | January 7, 2008; 4:55 PM ET | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Watching Tiny Screen Without Going Crosseyed

Portable devices keep getting smaller, yet people want to get more entertainment right to the two-inch screen on their iPod or cellphone. A company called MyVu is selling futuristic-looking glasses that let you watch a movie or play a video game on what seems like a bigger screen. Here's how...

By Kim Hart | January 7, 2008; 2:40 PM ET | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

At CES, Promotion Transcends Everything

It's my first time at CES and my first time in Vegas. So as you might imagine, my head is spinning. When I arrived at the convention center this morning, people were still setting up booths and finding power outlets. But they didn't waste any time in trying to...

By Kim Hart | January 7, 2008; 12:38 PM ET | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Local Firm Goes for Mobile TV

A major push at this year's CES is mobile entertainment. As it turns out, one of the companies putting serious resources in that direction is in our own backyard. ICO Communications of Reston took me out for a spin to show off it's product, which will be available once its...

By Kim Hart | January 7, 2008; 10:34 AM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (1)

Gates's Retirement Parody Gets Laughs at Keynote

Before Bill Gates got into the major news of his last CES keynote address last night, he played a video portraying what his last day on the job would be like. A star-studded cast bid him farewell from Microsoft as they parodied Gates' struggle to fill up all the free...

By Kim Hart | January 7, 2008; 8:29 AM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

The Annual Gates Speech at CES

LAS VEGAS-- For years Microsoft has been talking about all the advantages consumers can get from being connected--linking your computers, cellphones, TVs and digital cameras. This year the company is trying to make that connection more personal, driving technology to be smarter about who you are, what you want and...

By Kim Hart | January 7, 2008; 12:07 AM ET | Comments (11) | TrackBack (3)

Online Shoppers a Bit Less Satisfied This Year

Online shopping has become a staple of the holiday season, but customer satisfaction with e-retailers dropped slightly by about 1 percent this year. On top of that, online retail sales grew at a slower rate than in previous years. Netflix topped the list in customer satisfaction for the third year...

By Kim Hart | January 3, 2008; 7:00 AM ET | Comments (9) | TrackBack (0)

New Year's Text Message Mayhem

Text messages, it seems, have become the new holiday greetings. I used to get a couple dozen holiday cards and phone calls around the holidays. But last year, and even more this year, I got more Christmas greetings via text messages than actual phone calls. So I expected to receive...

By Kim Hart | January 2, 2008; 10:48 AM ET | Comments (7) | TrackBack (0)

 

© 2014 The Washington Post Company