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@Synpax No, Swartz downloaded published articles from a database available to anyone at MIT. He did create a script to do it faster and more efficiently, though, and secreted a laptop in a closet. But he didn't break into any system.
6 months ago on Did the mathematician who hacked OKCupid violate federal computer laws?
@cddirks Hmm. Spotify in its "extreme" music quality setting streams at 320 kbit/s, which is not CD quality. I subscribe to Spotify but there are no videos, no liner notes, none of the stuff I cover in this piece. Can you point me to them? As a music fan I'd like to have all this functionality.
6 months, 1 week ago on How to win the music streaming wars
@DayvidJannFigler I don't think you can allege that a pre-emptive lawsuit implies a guilty conscience. I think it's simply a legal strategy. I'm not sure it gives any advantage though. I don't think you can know who would win. Courts and judges and juries are fickle.
8 months ago on The GoldieBlox playbook: Imitate Youtube and Samsung
@Oletros It's the emails among the founders that show they knew a lot of copyrighted material was being uploaded to the site, and that Steve Chen himself talked about giving the appearance of policing it when the reality was quite different. Also Chen's email that chastised his fellow founder for uploading copyrighted material. They weren't innocent babes in the woods. They knew what they were doing (and it worked).
@karensd Joe Benjamin hustled off a quick response via email and in the way I wouldn't include "ums" and "huhs" in a quote I didn't think it would be fair to insert sics and leave poor grammar or punctuation. It was a judgment call and I admit I could be wrong. But I would rather err on the side of giving someone the benefit of the doubt then poke fun at typos, etc. I'm certainly guilty of making plenty of them (my Twitterfeed, for instance).
8 months, 3 weeks ago on Startup snake oil: Scamming early stage entrepreneurs
@kevin2kelly Half the story? I disagree. While I didn't put a dollar figure on how much it would have cost SpiderLabs in man hours to investigate me, it's likely it would have been tens of thousands, if not more than $100K. But more telling is the technique that worked was a simple phish. Although spooky and unsettling (from my pov) the rest was largely unnecessary--and a phish scam of the kind they pulled off would have cost almost nothing. It simply required code writing, an ability to crack passwords, and other know how. Now, if the story were something like "The Cost to Breach Your Privacy," you would be right. But it wasn't.
9 months ago on I challenged hackers to investigate me and what they found out is chilling
@DJSLKL Doh! Thanks. Will fix.
@MichaelPlaterII Integration doesn't sound like a trivial challenge. I'm not sure I see the byproduct of Facebook doing it successfully either--I'm speaking as a user, of course. Better targeting ads has been the holy grail for eons. Hasn't been cracked yet, has it?
9 months, 3 weeks ago on 7 ways Twitter could make money (beyond cozying up to TV networks)
@markrogo I wouldn't like to see an ad every 10 to 15 tweets. Twitter has a much narrower landscape than Facebook does, so ads stick out more. And I doubt Miley C and her celeb cronies would blink at paying $10K a year. Nevertheless, if you're interested in publishing a guest post with us exploring your own ideas on Twitter, feel free to email me.
@RyanStenson Yep, talked to salesmen about it. They're quite talkative. We were marveling at how much you can feel like you're inside an online web experience. Lots of electronics stores in NYC have this anti-theft design. J&R, for ex. It's the all-in-one, everything under one roof, and instant gratification of getting what you want that, to me, feels online (except you don't have to wait for shipping). That doesn't mean Herman Schreiber built the store with that in mind.
10 months, 3 weeks ago on B&H Photo’s superstore is really an online retailer
@msilverman Ha ha. That's dead on. Sometimes I just want to watch what I want to watch without having to set out on an expedition to find it.
10 months, 4 weeks ago on Screwing cable TV one show at a time
@seyitaylor I know. It broke my heart.
11 months ago on How to manipulate children for fun and profit
@Graham Lawlor I imagine it's because LP has found it hard to monetize these online offerings. Books are high margin--like printed newspapers (with ads) are. Sell fewer and you'll eventually run into trouble.
11 months, 1 week ago on Traveling the lonely planet: the end of guide book publishing
@ProducerMatthew @Penenberg True. Kind of reminds me of the leverage that film distributers have. If your theater wants a blockbuster it has to run a lot of movies few will buy tix to see. In some ways it increases the variety of movies available in cinemas. In others it harms theater operators, who would only want movies that will generate the biggest audiences.
11 months, 3 weeks ago on Why Time Warner Cable is like a newspaper
@ProducerMatthew @Penenberg I wish they'd let us check off channels we'd like to pay for like you order sushi in some restaurants (with a pencil on a paper form). Pay for what we want and skip the rest.
@antnisP @Penenberg It was a wink to Schumpeter's "creative destruction." Was having fun with language and I like how "its entire business is in the midst of creatively destructing" sounds. Guess I missed, huh?
@ProducerMatthew Well, I did call CBS "the highest rated television broadcast network" in the lede. I wouldn't expect many TWC subscribers to cut the cord just because they lose CBS programming until football season. Do you?
@bk22 Point taken on the HD audio being higher than CD resolution. Do you think it'd be better quality than vinyl? (Serious question.) Also, in your opinion, is there any difference between Spotify, MOG, and Pandora when it comes to audio quality? Because whether you're talking about 256, 320, AAC, or my comparing bitrates across compression schemes, what truly matters is the sound.
11 months, 4 weeks ago on How Apple could destroy Spotify, MOG, Pandora, and the rest
@fry_dave @bob1010 Well, 10 bucks a month is $120 a year. Personally I'd rather spend $25 a year. Maybe you have more disposable income than I do.
@bob1010 Actually I think I can. I've tried a side-by-side comparisons with iTunes vs. MOG on my home system. But you may be right if you just played a song for me and asked which it is.
@CharlesW Sure, you can, through good headphones or a decent system. Not through earbuds or crappy speakers, though.
@D_Genius Nope, but it's also 320kbps. Have you tried it? How do you like it?
@earbits @Jabari Well said.
1 year ago on How Pandora screws songwriters
@AssafLavie Doesn't everyone have the right to be paid fairly for the work they do? I guess the issue here is what constitutes "fair." I don't think most of these musicians do it to get rich. But their feeling, it seems, is that companies like Pandora and Spotify are getting rich off of their labor and they are not being fairly compensated for it.
@Jabari Hahaha. Well that's true. You'll get no argument on that from me. But the piece looked at how the spoils are being divided today, which is largely because of government regulation. The difference between a Picasso original and copy is much different than recorded music. There is no original for sale with music; it's all copies. So you could argue that the original is the copy, tho I admit that sounds pretty meta, doesn't it?
@Ronathan Interesting point re broadcast provider "play" vs. individual play on a streaming device. Email me if you might like to develop the idea in a guest post.
@luciant @paulcarr @MsDagny @Encaitar Paul contributes to PandoDaily. He doesn't own it. We welcome a wide array of perspectives. When Bryan posts, he speaks for himself. When Paul does, he, too, speaks for himself. If you don't like a contributor's perspectives, you don't need to read his posts.
1 year, 1 month ago on Silicon Valley builds amazing spy tools, is horrified when they’re used for spying
@KenG That'd definitely be illegal under the act. So is lying to Facebook about your age. The Act is incredibly broad and could be interpreted to cover all sorts of activities that most of us would view as harmless--unlike locking down someone else's computer with a malicious and stealth software application.
1 year, 1 month ago on Two copywrongs don’t make a copyright
@SalMatteis True, although in the post he wrote: "Yahoo has left the Flickr community alone and that has helped Flickr survive despite the lack of product innovation preceding Marissa’s tenure." Flickr's founders tell a much different story, claiming Flickr was starved of resources so it couldn't innovate. We'll have to see, of course. Huge acquisitions often don't work out in the way that most mergers don't end well.
1 year, 2 months ago on Yahoo buys Tumblr and Mayer “promises not to screw it up” like past deals
@ranjanxroy Yes, you're right. Thanks for pointing that out. Am adding a disclosure.
1 year, 2 months ago on Study shows that Lumosity brain games can rehab your brain
@John Chop Obviously I'm not the only "bearish" one. The stock has fallen dramatically over the past few months. And I do wonder about the company's long-term prospects. But one great product could change everything. Maybe this is 2008 all over again. Maybe it's not. It bears watching.
1 year, 4 months ago on For Apple it’s almost like 2008 all over again
@DanLindberg Aw, shucks. Thanks!
1 year, 6 months ago on 3D printers could force the NRA to beg for government regulation
@BrantFletcher Those intent on pushing 3D printer technology forward, like Cody R. Wilson, for example, are certainly not liberals, and they--and others heavily involved with 3D printers--claim that printing ammo and gun parts will one day be feasible. Michael Guslick, the American gunsmith, forged plastic parts in a gun from which he fired 200 rounds. The tech is in its infancy, some plastics exist that are harder than steel. And where in the piece do you see me calling for guns being taken away from people? I'm simply looking at the underlying impact of technology on the gun industry and the NRA. You can put you head in the sand and pretend it won't have an impact and make ad hominem attacks. But I doubt that will work.
@JonSanders According to polls, the NRA leadership seems to be out of step with its membership on many of these regulatory issues. Looney Tunes refers to the idea of placing armed guards in every school. There are 100,000 public schools in America. Each guard would have to be trained. You'd need at least two guards per school (what if a guard is sick, for ex., and can't come in.) So you'd need 200,000 trained guards x a decent wage If you do the math (estimates, of course) you're looking at perhaps $2 billion a year. Plus you'd be adding a government-run bureaucracy. To many people this is a Loony Tunes idea.
@JamesCorbally I'm surprised you drew that conclusion. I'm saying that companies that manufacture guns will likely face their own Napster moment, and if they follow the usual course of action (music industry, Hollywood) they will try to put limits on what can be fabricated in 3D printers. The only way to do that would be for the gov to step in. That would make for very strange bedfellows (NRA and gov.). THat does not mean they would be successful. Hasn't helped the music industry much, other than giving RIAA legal license to go after downloaders, which is a waste. Doesn't help Hollywood much. Probably wouldn't help gun makers, who would have to adapt their business models. Companies don't easily do that, of course, so I wonder if creative destruction is coming to gun makers.
@Francisco Dao @Adam Frankl Francisco is correct. Here's a link to an illustration and description of the Wright Bros. wind tunnel: http://www.stkate.edu/physics/Flight/WrightBrosWindTunnelLab.html
If you're interested, James Tobin's biography of the Wright Brothers is a terrific read: http://www.amazon.com/To-Conquer-Air-Wright-Brothers/dp/0743255364/ref=sr_1_12?ie=UTF8&qid=1357707258&sr=8-12&keywords=Wright+brothers
Tobin goes into some detail about their rigorous scientific (aerodynamics) research. Truly inspiring. A great American invention story.
1 year, 6 months ago on When dropping out might be an advantage
Yes, true, though one conflict between library ebooks and publishers is that publishers have demanded strict limits on how many times an ebook can be checked out.
1 year, 6 months ago on Why I chose a crappy Kindle over the iPad for my kid
@statspotting Sure it is. Not the topic of this particular column but definitely worthy of exploration. I'm writing a book on game mechanics and their use in commerce, marketing, education, and the like--fascinating subject. I'm not sure anyone has cracked it yet. What are your thoughts on this?
@svanderson Yeah! Except that you can't simply access a library database and read whatever books you want--book publishers (copyright holders) would never allow that unless they are remunerated. So libraries don't stream books; they allow you to borrow one at a time, and if a book is checked out, you can't read it. You could always go to a library to take out physical copies of books (or music) but most people, I suspect, would like to read and listen on their own devices at home or wherever they are, not in a library with limited hours and often inconveniently located. So streaming is a much different model, for what its worth.
@zipfox I think reading and game play are important. What if you encouraged your boy to try coding his own games in a couple of years?
@KirkCheyfitz @Penenberg @WalkerHamilton That's a great piece of trivia, Kirk. Thanks. It definitely does have similarities.
1 year, 6 months ago on Why Tesla is like Amazon and Elon Musk like Jeff Bezos
@JonSanders The info is already out there it's just that no one has gone to the trouble of collecting it and putting it together as a list and/or map. This is, I think, the main issue: The info already sits out there; it's really a matter of putting it together. Then what? You could post just about anyone's home address, DOB, pull up all their online commentary and all other sets of public records (political donations, blog commentary and posts, Tweets, domain registrations, phone numbers. All of this is already out there. Yet we object (me included) to this idea that someone could put it together and offer it online.
1 year, 6 months ago on Journalists, gun owners, and shooting the wrong privacy horse
@polizeros I hadn't thought about fabricating bullets from 3D printers. I think you're right. Perhaps one day you could manufacture a gun from a 3D printer. It opens up all sorts of possibilities.
@GregKumparak I second that, Nathaniel. Keep it up!
1 year, 7 months ago on What I’ve learned in one year of tech writing
@Jarober I suspect if Tesla follows the path of most hardware innovations it will get better and achieve much greater battery range. A Tesla wouldn't appropriate for you and your driving needs. Most many people are in their car for minutes a day, not hours. Those who take longer are perhaps caught in traffic, not moving or just moving slowly. Either way imagine if Tesla's battery life followed a Moore's Law-like trajectory.
1 year, 7 months ago on Why Tesla is like Amazon and Elon Musk like Jeff Bezos
@jacks_whitli That's true--Musk, as I wrote, is doing the opposite of HP's sell the printer for cheap and charge outrageous amounts for printer cartridges. Amazon, in one way with the Kindle, sells hardware at cost and content pretty cheap, too. Musk charges a premium for the hardware (the car) but gives away the razor blades, so to speak. But the piece is, at its foundation, about both of them creating ecosystems to lock in consumers. So does Apple, but that's for another day, another column.
@peteforde A clementine? Seriously, though, mandarin in the Merriam-Webster sense of the word: "a public official in the Chinese Empire of any of nine superior grades." KInd of like a big boss.
@WalkerHamilton You're right. Although both "weigh station" and "way station" exist, they mean have slightly different meanings. I'll fix, and thanks for the head's up.
@rcftlt Thanks for that. Bradlee says he asked after Nixon resigned. I recall other interviews when he claimed he was surprised it turned out to be Mark Felt. At any rate, I'll revise it. Thanks for pointing it out.
1 year, 8 months ago on Embargoes, NDAs, and tech journalism’s way of doing business
@ZoeyHudson The conventional wisdom is that startups need technical co-founders. You could list thousands that follow this model. But there are exceptions, like those mentioned in this story. Pinterest started at Tote, and came out of NYU Stern.
1 year, 9 months ago on A technical co-founder? In New York fuggedaboutit!