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Archive: March 2009

Economic Squeeze May Create More Room For Teleconferencing

A combination of improved technology and pressure to cut costs across organizations is making teleconferencing look more attractive, especially in the public sector. At least that's what AT&T and Cisco say.

By Kim Hart | March 31, 2009; 4:18 PM ET | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

MySpace's Latest Move: Local Restaurant And Bar Reviews

MySpace announced today that it has partnered with online city guide service CitySearch to let users of the social networking site search for reviews and information about restaurants, bars and nightlife in their area. In a phone call with reporters, MySpace CEO Chris DeWolfe described the new service as the...

By Mike Musgrove | March 31, 2009; 1:01 PM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Skype On iPhone, But Not ATT's 3G Network

Internet phone service provider Skype said it will offer an iPhone application tomorrow, a move that will allow users of the service to place free international phone calls on the Apple device over WiFi networks. But if you want to make a call to London while riding on the bus...

By Cecilia Kang | March 30, 2009; 6:00 PM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Strickling to NTIA, Completes Obama's Big Broadband Jobs

The nomination of Lawrence Strickling last week to head the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, which advises the White House on technology issues, moves the administration closer to kick-starting its plan to bring broadband to the masses. Jonathan Adelstein, a Democratic commissioner at the Federal Communications Commission, was also nominated...

By Cecilia Kang | March 30, 2009; 4:38 PM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Netflix: Increased Fee For Blu-Ray Users

Blu-ray-owning movie fans who belong to the online-based video subscription service Netflix will soon be paying a little extra for access to the high definition discs. For people who use the service's most popular plan, which lets you check out three discs at a time from the company, there's now...

By Mike Musgrove | March 30, 2009; 4:00 PM ET | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Washington-based Blackboard Releases iPhone App

Blackboard, the Washington-based maker of software designed to help students stay in touch with their coursework assignments and their professors, is releasing an iPhone App today. Blackboard's new software is designed to provide a mobile version of the same tools that students and teachers use at the company's Web site....

By Mike Musgrove | March 26, 2009; 1:12 PM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

New Bethesda Softworks "Fallout" Content: A Little Glitchy

(Update: Bethesda Softworks has fixed this issue, as of Wednesday afternoon....) Some videogame fans are a bit cranky with Rockville-based game developer Bethesda Softworks today. Seems that some new downloadable content designed to expand the studio's bestselling game Fallout 3 comes with some serious bugs that are now causing the...

By Mike Musgrove | March 24, 2009; 12:30 PM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Big Huge Games Seeks Big Money Buyer

Looks like a local videogame company's shift in focus to stay relevant in the Wii hasn't paid off. Game publisher THQ said this week that it will shutter its Timonium-based subsidiary, Big Huge Games, if it doesn't find a buyer for the studio within 60 days. The California-based publisher acquired...

By Mike Musgrove | March 19, 2009; 6:44 PM ET | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Vivek Kundra Back On The Job

Federal Chief Technology Officer Vivek Kundra returned to his job today, White House officials told the New York Times after it was reported today by TechPresident. Kundra took a five-day leave of absence after the FBI raided his former stomping grounds: the District of Columbia Office of the Chief Technology...

By Kim Hart | March 17, 2009; 5:45 PM ET | Comments (10) | TrackBack (0)

iPhone, Version 3.0, Revealed

Apple showed off everything from a blood pressure monitor to the latest version of The Sims at an event today where the company revealed new features and software for the iPhone. The latest version of the iPhone's software, version 3.0, launches this summer. And yes, at least one rumor was...

By Mike Musgrove | March 17, 2009; 2:40 PM ET | Comments (14) | TrackBack (0)

GTA "Chinatown Wars" on Nintendo DS Today

Blood and gore, drug references, strong language and violence -- the latest Grand Theft Auto features pretty much the type of fare that you'd expect from the controversial and bestselling game franchise. But there's something a little different about the latest foray onto crime-filled streets of Liberty City, called Chinatown...

By Mike Musgrove | March 17, 2009; 2:00 PM ET | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Consumer Music Spending Trends: A Fresh Snapshot from NPD

The number of U.S. consumers buying music CDs fell by 17 million last year, while the number of music fans paying for digital music downloads increased by 8 million, according to a new report from NPD. The research firm said that it found the decline in CD purchases was most...

By Mike Musgrove | March 17, 2009; 12:00 PM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Could There Be A New iPhone On The Horizon?

There's some potentially interesting news rolling out for iPhone owners this afternoon, as Apple gears up to introduce.... something. The Internet is abuzz that the company will introduce new software for the popular smartphone and possibly some new tweaks at its iTunes stores, including a new tiered pricing system for...

By Mike Musgrove | March 17, 2009; 10:50 AM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

New Rules for Broadcasters, New Dispute Over Digital Readiness

The Federal Communications Commission today set a few new rules for broadcasters as they prepare to turn off analog signals before or on June 12, the current deadline for the transition to digital television. First of all, stations must provide on-air and other notifications if they anticipate that 2 percent...

By Kim Hart | March 13, 2009; 6:15 PM ET | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0)

Happy Birthday, Internet

Twenty years ago today, an independent contractor for the European Organization for Nuclear Research named Tim Berners-Lee pitched his employers an innovative idea on how to share the lab's research on an open computer network. That idea is now credited as being, essentially, the basic blueprint for what we know...

By Mike Musgrove | March 13, 2009; 10:53 AM ET | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

DC Elementary School Puts Wii Music On the Curriculum

Used to be parents rewarded kids for good academic performance with a little bit of after-school videogame time. These days, sometimes, videogames are in the classroom. H.D. Cooke Elementary School, near Howard University, is getting a Wii today as part of a collaboration between Nintendo and the National Association for...

By Mike Musgrove | March 12, 2009; 11:55 AM ET | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Obama Broadband Internet Plan Short on Details, First Wave of Grants In April

The Obama administration yesterday unveiled the first steps of its plan to pour $8 billion into the construction of new broadband Internet networks around the nation. And while many details haven't been finalized on how the stimulus money will be spent and who will qualify for the grants, interest in...

By Cecilia Kang | March 10, 2009; 3:14 PM ET | Comments (11) | TrackBack (0)

AOL Layoffs Happening Today

Looks like the ax is falling at AOL today, according to a report posted this morning by Silicon Alley Insider. In an internal memo, the company announced in January that it would be laying off workers as a result of the economic recession and a sharp reduction in spending by...

By Mike Musgrove | March 10, 2009; 12:28 PM ET | Comments (8) | TrackBack (0)

Apple Co-founder Woz on Dancing With the Stars Tonight

Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak is hoping for the support of techies and Mac fans tonight, as he appears on a popular dancing competition TV show. As the latest season of ABC's Dancing With The Stars kicks off, "Woz" will be competing against the likes of Denise Richards, Lil Kim and...

By Mike Musgrove | March 9, 2009; 12:45 PM ET | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0)

Obama's $8B Broadband Plan Launches Tuesday

Next Tuesday, the White House will launch its high-speed Internet plan using more than $8 billion in stimulus funds. Leaders from the Department of Commerce, Department of Agriculture and Federal Communications Commission will meet to discuss how the different agencies will use the funds to rural and other areas that...

By Cecilia Kang | March 6, 2009; 4:15 PM ET | Comments (5) | TrackBack (0)

Obama Tech Adviser Lays Out Telecom Policy Roadmap

A leading technology advisor to President Obama said in a research note for his investment firm today that privacy and net neutrality will be among the biggest telecommunications issues facing the Federal Communications Commission and the administration going forward. Analyst Blair Levin, who was the co-lead of Obama's technology and...

By Cecilia Kang | March 6, 2009; 2:45 PM ET | Comments (5) | TrackBack (0)

Readers Help Family Caught In Digital Divide

Since we ran Saturday's story "One Step Off The Superhighway" on the digital divide in urban areas, more than a dozen people have called or sent e-mails with offers of help the family featured in the article. Many wanted to donate or buy Judith Theodore a computer or help pay...

By Cecilia Kang | March 5, 2009; 3:29 PM ET | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Vivek Kundra to be Obama's Chief Information Officer

President Obama announced this morning that Vivek Kundra, currently the District of Columbia's Chief Technology Officer, will be the first Federal Chief Information Officer, a position Obama pledged to create during his campaign. "Vivek Kundra will bring a depth of experience in the technology arena and a commitment to lowering...

By Kim Hart | March 5, 2009; 9:45 AM ET | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Patent Reform Bill Introduced In Congress Today

Talk of patent reform has filled the halls of technology companies and Capitol Hill for years, but reaching bipartisan agreements on key parts of this very thorny issue has proved difficult. As a result, patent legislation hasn't gotten far in Congress. For example, the Patent Reform Act of 2007 promised...

By Kim Hart | March 3, 2009; 6:30 PM ET | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Microsoft Continues to Hire Guest Visa Workers

Responding to questions from Congress about layoff and work force plans, Microsoft general counsel Brad Smith said in a blog post today that the company plans to keep its use of H1-B guest-worker visas at levels that are in line with previous years. When Microsoft announced its first round of...

By Kim Hart | March 3, 2009; 5:40 PM ET | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

Julius Genachowski Nominated to Chair FCC

President Obama announced today the nomination of his technology adviser and law school friend Julius Genachowski to head the Federal Communications Commission, the government's regulatory body in charge of telecommunications, media, and Internet policy. Genachowski will take over the FCC at a time of sweeping technological change with the convergence...

By Cecilia Kang | March 3, 2009; 3:17 PM ET | Comments (0) | TrackBack (1)

 

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