FLO TV

June 29, 2009

FloTV

FLO TV Incorporated, provider of the FLO TV™ live mobile TV service and a wholly owned subsidiary of Qualcomm Incorporated, announced that the FLO TV service will expand its service nationwide following the DTV transition on June 12, which frees up broadband spectrum for FLO TV’s dedicated network. FLO TV will expand into 39 new markets, offering its service to an additional 60 million customers with a total reach of more than 100 major markets and more than 200 million potential consumers nationwide by the end of 2009. This will complete FLO TV’s creation of the only dedicated, linear, live mobile TV network, allowing consumers to access broadcast-quality news, sports and entertainment on their mobile devices.

Fifteen new markets will go live immediately following the DTV transition on June 12, bringing service to major markets such as Boston, Houston, Miami and San Francisco, while others will follow throughout the year. In addition to adding new markets, immediately upon the transition, FLO TV also will expand service in existing markets including Chicago, Los Angeles, New York and Washington, DC.

“The DTV transition is a milestone for TV lovers everywhere; with the completion of FLO TV’s nationwide network, consumers across the country now have the ability to watch TV on the go with the same high quality they’d expect in their living rooms,” said Bill Stone, president of FLO TV. ”With this national coverage, we are poised to take on the next level of consumer engagement by bringing the FLO TV service to customers on multiple entertainment devices beyond the mobile phone.”

In January, FLO TV announced that it has teamed with Audiovox, the marketer of automotive entertainment systems, to be the exclusive supplier of in-vehicle units that will work with a car’s existing video viewing equipment to enable passengers to watch FLO TV in their cars. In addition, Audiovox also will produce the only FLO TV-ready overhead drop down video as well as head rest systems units in the market. Continued cooperation with leading companies will ensure that FLO TV is available to consumers across multiple platforms in conjunction with the expansion in service coverage.

The FLO TV service is delivered using a technology that delivers video over the company’s own dedicated mobile network, offering full-length simulcast and time-shifted programming from some of the world’s top entertainment brands including CBS, ESPN, FOX, MTV and NBC. FLO TV also offers original content, having last month announced a deal with famed video blogger Amanda Congdon to bring exclusive content to subscribers.

Mobile TV Usage on the Rise

According to a recent report by Nielsen, mobile video viewing grew 52 percent in Q1 2009 compared with the previous year.* FLO TV market research shows that viewers who watch the FLO TV service are spending an average of more than 25 minutes per day watching television on their phones. This is comparable to the average time U.S. cell phone users spend per day talking on their cell phones, according to CTIA’s Semi-Annual Wireless Industry Survey 2008. The appeal of FLO TV’s live programming is illustrated by a consistent pattern of increased viewership and consumer demand for major sporting and significant news events including an increase of 80 percent or more during the Presidential Inauguration and the 2008 Summer Olympics (exclusive programming to AT&T).

The FLO TV service is available on the top two U.S. wireless carriers, including AT&T as AT&T Mobile TV.

HRD (hard rectangular drive) An SSD Killer?

June 29, 2009

I’ll spare your the technical jargon, but this is a very interesting idea indeed. Simply put, the platters are plates that oscillate on heads which are built in. There are thousands of heads on the surface, each made of a semiconductor material — nano tech diamond sheet — and any one of them can read or write independently. Also realize that the movement involved is minuscule. An easy way to envision this in contrast to standard hard disk drives is that instead of large circles which each have a head, think of it as many, many tiny squares which each have their own head.

The target for this new technology is a bit of an in-between market. While HRD’s will reportedly be cheaper than an SSD, though arguably not quite as good, they are theoretically much better than a typical HDD. HRD reportedly achieves higher data rates than that of some SSDs, but uses a little more power in the process. Additionally, it is supposed to have as good or better reliability than a regular HDD. Contrast this with SSDs, which have a given number of read/writes after which the drive is useless. Another fundamental advantage HRDs have over HDDs is that sectors are arranged in rows and columns rather than being forced to make them fit on a circle.

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In this writer’s opinion — very cool. Regardless if it will actually trump or compete with SSDs it is very, very cool. However, one has to contemplate that there is no such thing as a friction free material. While diamond sheet would do VERY well, it’s still not free of the constraints of physics. Even if we understand that the movements are very tiny, it’s assumed there would still be some noise and/or sensation of vibration. Would it buzz? Hum? Yell obscenities? Time will tell.

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Optimized Kernels for Debian “Lenny”

June 24, 2009

Hardwareforums.com kernels

Hardwareforums.com is now hosting architecturally-optimized Linux kernels! Currently we’re packaging custom kernels for Debian “Lenny”, which should also work with many Debian-derivative distributions of Linux. These kernels are based off of the latest stable source from kernel.org, and will be updated as frequently as schedules allow. There are some advantages to running a custom Linux kernel, but also some disadvantages which should be taken into account.

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The Evernote “Seven Ate Nine” Party

June 23, 2009

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It seems not every company in Silicon Valley is struggling in today’s sluggish economy. Evernote, the mutli-platform note-taking company with the slogan “Remember everything”, is throwing a party this July in the San Francisco bay area. The party, to take place on 07/08/09 (hence the silly mnemonic), is open to all comers, and they even be giving away free drinks. If you’re going to be in the bay area anyway, this might be worth a look.

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Apple unveils Snow Leopard and new iPhone

June 8, 2009

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Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference 2009 in San Francisco has started. There was a keynote, as usual, a few hours ago. New Products have been announced. Here’s a list of the important stuff:

  • New 15″ Macbook Pro. This one has an SD-card slot, and a battery that keeps the MBP running for 7 hours when fully charged.
  • The 13″ Macbook is now replaced by a 13″ Macbook Pro. This one also includes Firewire 800.
  • Mac OS X 10.6 “Snow Leopard” is going to be launched in September this year.
  • The iPhone OS 3.0 is going to be launched on the 17th of June. It’s a free upgrade for all iPhones, and costs $9,95 for the iPod Touch (both generations).
  • A new iPhone, called the iPhone 3G S, is going to be launched in the US on the 19th of June and on the 9th of August in 80 other countries. The new version has a faster CPU, better battery, 3.0 megapixel camera with auto focus, white balance, macro and video caputure at 30 FPS.
  • Safari 4. This one is now available for both Mac OS X 10.4 and Windows.

Read more: Engadget | Computer World

Microsoft Changes Live Search to “Bing”

June 6, 2009

Bing, its Microsoft’s new effort to battle the giant Google. They have spent in the area of 90 million dollars on an ad campaign promoting Bing. Their goal here is not to go head to head with Ask, Yahoo, or Google, but to convince people of all of what they have been missing. Even though its Microsoft own data, they have figured that 42% of all searches are unsuccessful in the first query. Microsoft’s answer to this is their “related categories”, for example if your searching for a game, you might find prices, reviews, and other related information in the related category.

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Oddly enough, i found it in ad-words above my inbox. Also not so sure of the “decision engine” slogan, to me it sounds like they are trying to take the searcher out of the equation, how ever that works. However, it does seem fairly interesting, and they are making the jump straight to the whole “media search”, where as Google right now has their different labs in which features like what Bing includes are offered. So, will Bing revolution internet searching and topple Google? who know, maybe, but more than likely not..

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