Archive for June, 2005

Ding dong, the Voq is dead

June 8, 2005 Comments off

Ding dong, the Voq is dead:

The poor, much-maligned Voq smartphone from Sierra Wireless has just been put out of its misery. The company announced that the QWERTY smartphone line will be either divested or terminated due to lackluster sales. And to refresh everyone’s memory on exactly why those sales were so tremendously lackluster, let’s just say bungling a product launch bad enough to earn you a shareholder’s suit should pretty much have been the writing on the wall.

If the device wasn’t such a piece of junk and the software they tagged onto a lack-luster Windows Mobile version that was outdated already by the time the device launched, maybe this could have worked. But having spent a week with this … thing … I’m glad I got rid of it. I feel myself getting amped up over the new info coming from MS around push email and other features of Exchange SP2 with Windows Mobile 5.0, but will they live up to the hype that has been generated? Let’s hope so, because the market may give up on MS if it doesn’t deliver.

I read something this morning from some “analyst” who said that the new feature pack wasn’t really pushing email, the device still had to go check for email (like Outlook does), just more often. I hope this is an incorrect assumption based on the current version of WM5.0 without the impending feature pack. Anyone heard any clarification on what MS really means by push?

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United Airlines announces in-flight WiFi plans

June 7, 2005 Comments off

United Airlines announces in-flight WiFi plans:

Bring it!

It really isn’t the flying itself we’re afraid of—it’s the prospect of being without our nurturing tether to the internet that makes us all nervous and agitated. Which is why we’re filled with heady anticipation at the news that United Airlines is planning to become the first domestic carrier to offer WiFi access on all of its flights (assuming that they don’t go out of business first, that is). It’ll still be a while before you’ll actually be able to get online (they’re aiming to have this rolled out by the end of next year), but they’ve gotten the proper FAA approval to start installing and testing the equipment, and now all they need is for the FCC to auction off the necessary bandwidth. They haven’t announced what they’re planning to charge for in-flight access, but other airlines that offer in-flight WiFi, like Lufthansa, SAS, Singapore Airlines, and Japan Airlines, usually charge about thirty bucks a flight to get your WiFi on.

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Japanese baseball robot can hit a 300km/h pitch, whut?

June 6, 2005 Comments off

Japanese baseball robot can hit a 300km/h pitch, whut?:

Hiroshima University associate professor Idaku Ishii has developed a robot able to cope with some serious fastball action, able to hit a pitch coming at speeds up to 300 kilometers per hour. We’re pretty impressed with this, considering we routinely strike out during heated Engadget Whiffle Ball matches. The robot manages such uber-skilldom by instantly analyzing the imaging results from its precision cameras to determine the balls’ trajectory, then whammo, socking the living daylights out of it (that’s the technical terminoloy, honest). All of which is part of a plan to replace all humans in the sport of baseball with either mechanoids or cartoons, saving the industry millions in salaries and legal fees.

Finally a plan that makes sense to solve future contract negotiation issues in baseball.

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The Dog-Powered Scooter

June 6, 2005 Comments off

The Dog-Powered Scooter:

Dog-Powered Scooter

Ok, so maybe Mark Schutte’s dog-powered scooter doesn’t pass the animal cruelty test, but damn, have you seen the gas prices lately? If you’re really in a rush, try the two-dog version.

But you don’t have to clean up after a Segway. 🙂

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Wired News: Radio Industry Hits Shuffle

June 6, 2005 Comments off

Wired News: Radio Industry Hits Shuffle:

Some observers are skeptical of the mix-and-match approach. ‘It assumes that someone will set their dial to one radio station, leave it there all day and be thrilled with the randomness,’ said Darrel Goodin, general manager of several Jefferson-Pilot stations in San Diego. ‘It runs extremely counter to the way the radio has been successful over the years. Maybe someone has found a way to defy gravity, but the odds are against it.’

Well consider myself flating in mid air then. Dude – that’s the point. Alciea and I love this new Jack station in Seattle because it essentially takes our whole CD collection and puts it on random. How is this bad?

Nice try at spin control buddy. You’re wrong.

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Listen to the authorities and die

June 6, 2005 Comments off

Listen to the authorities and die:

Cory Doctorow: The people in the Twin Towers who ignored the instructions from the cops to stay put survived. The ones who paid attention to them died. Gary Wolf’s tantalizing piece in this month’s Wired concludes that the future of American security lies in ignoring the Department of Homeland Security, with its "rainbow of doom," its magic airport involuntary nudity machines, and its suspension of the Constitution and relying instead on common sense and democratic fundamentals.

Another case of Boing Boing (and Wired) telling it like it is.

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