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April 30, 2010

Start-up story: Baltimore's Moodlerooms Inc.

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This week, I learned about Moodlerooms Inc., a Baltimore start-up that's starting to fire on all cylinders. They're a company based out of the Emerging Technologies Center on E. 33rd St. in Baltimore, and they're growing like a weed. Basically, they built open-source software which enables teachers to run courses and connect with students online.

For those who like reading about start-up stories, Moodlerooms was started by three Baltimore educators more than five years ago. It brought in a professional management team (that's Martin Knott, CEO, above) and has started to gain traction in the market for online learning management systems.

I wrote about Moodlerooms in today's print edition. Check out the online version of the story here.


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 8:50 AM | | Comments (4)
Categories: Startups
        

April 29, 2010

Verizon to Baltimore: "Verizon does not redline. We never have and we never will."

verizon_fios.jpgI attended last night's City Council hearing, where our elected leaders queried Verizon as to why they have not yet rolled out their next-generation broadband Internet service, FiOS, in Baltimore, while launching it in counties around the city.

There seem to be at least two camps in this debate: those who question Verizon's motives for not expanding FiOS in Baltimore on moral and socio-economic grounds. And then there are those who argue that as a for-profit business, it's really Verizon's call on where and when they roll out their services, based on market conditions.

Here's what I learned last night -- and my own still-unanswered question is at the end of this recap:

* The City Council wants Baltimoreans to know that they are not doing anything to block Verizon's FiOS service in Baltimore. Our council members are irritated -- to put it mildly -- that there is a public perception in Baltimore that city leaders have somehow taken steps to block or make it difficult for Verizon to roll out FiOS in Baltimore. That does not appear to be true in any way, according to Councilman Bill Cole and others.

* Councilman Cole and others insist the city's leaders are not beholden to Comcast in any way; Comcast does have a cable franchise in Baltimore. He recounted an encounter with a Verizon salesperson who told him FiOS wasn't in Baltimore because Comcast was friendly with elected officials because the former councilmember, Ken Harris, who was killed in a defenseless murder in 2008, worked for Comcast. Cole called that allegation "beyond insulting."

* Councilmembers Jim Kraft and Helen Holton kept hammering Tabb Bishop, Verizon's regional vice president of government affairs, on the company's FiOS advertising in Baltimore. They want television and print ads to make it clear that Verizon FiOS is not offered in Baltimore city because the company has chosen not to offer it to city residents.

Again, it may sound like semantics, but these City Council members appear to be tired of getting blamed for a lack of FiOS from constituents.

* Councilman Kraft, in talking about Verizon's coverage area for FiOS in the Baltimore area, said the city was the "hole" in the Verizon FiOS "donut." Meaning: FiOS is all around the city, but not in the city. (MMmmmmmm, did someone say donuts?)

So what did Mr. Bishop of Verizon have to say in response to the questioning? Here's a synopsis:

* "Verizon does not redline. We never have and we never will." Verizon is obviously sensitive to any accusations that they're targeting products to exclude poorer minorities. Bishop talked about the responsible corporate citizen that Verizon has been in Baltimore; it donated $1.2 million to projects in Baltimore last year, he said.

* He said Verizon offers a very high-tech fiber-optic service for businesses in Baltimore.

* "We understand it's an exciting service, but we can't be everywhere at one time," Bishop said. In 2004, when it was launching FiOS, Verizon set a goal of reaching 18 million households with it, in many states across the country. They're currently at 15.5 million. Bishop basically said Verizon thought it was time to stop the expansion and assess how it was going, and focus on growing the service in the markets they were already in, rather than continuing to launch in new ones. Other markets they're not in include Boston, Albany, Syracuse, and Buffalo.

THE QUESTION REMAINS:

After talking with Tabb Bishop myself last week by phone and listening to him speak last night, I realize that the basic question of "why not Baltimore" was asked but never really answered.

We still have not heard Verizon's rationale for avoiding Baltimore and heck, while we're at it: Boston and Buffalo and Syracuse and Albany, too.

Specifically, by what standards did Verizon choose who would get FiOS and who would not? Did they throw darts at a map of the United States?

It's not enough to say "we can't be everywhere" -- I think people generally understand that. But why is Baltimore the hole in the donut, to use Kraft's analogy?  Choices were made probably following a set of criteria. Verizon must have made a business decision (one hopes) on a set of facts, and the city wants more clarification on how they reached that decision.

Mr. Bishop noted that Verizon Maryland has been based in Baltimore since the late 1800s -- is it odd that the regional headquarters of this company hasn't rolled out its premiere service in its own city?

Verizon does not want to disclose proprietary information about its business decisions, but clearly, there was some kind of internal decision-making or scorecard that they used to choose where to roll out FiOS in communities across the country.

I think Baltimoreans and the City Council want to know the criteria, as complex as it may have been, they used to roll out FiOS and, thus far, to exclude Baltimore from the roll-out. What do you think?


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 9:17 AM | | Comments (23)
Categories: *NEWS*
        

Jon Stewart weighs in on lost iPhone flap on Daily Show

Really funny stuff. Must watch.

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Appholes
www.thedailyshow.com
Daily Show Full EpisodesPolitical HumorTea Party

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Posted by Gus Sentementes at 8:24 AM | | Comments (1)
Categories: Geeks
        

April 28, 2010

Breaking: Hewlett-Packard to buy Palm for $1.2 billion

Hewlett-Packard is buying Palm for $1.2 billion.

Anybody who's followed Palm closely for the last several months has seen the writing on the wall. Many didn't expect the company, maker of the innovative Palm Pre smartphone, to last on its own for long in a marketplace dominated by BlackBerry, Apple and Google Android cell phone products.

Links:

:: New York Times' DealBook blog

:: Company press release

(FYI -- I got the news off the Wall Street Journal's Twitter feed.)


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Posted by Gus Sentementes at 4:18 PM | | Comments (1)
Categories: *NEWS*
        

April 27, 2010

"PowerPoint makes us stupid"?

powerpointmilitary.jpg
Great story by the NYT's Elisabeth Bumiller, who wrote about the U.S. military's obsession with the Microsoft presentation program, PowerPoint. The diagram above is an authentic slide from a military presentation. Yikes!

Bumiller quotes a U.S. general who says: "PowerPoint makes us stupid."

Are you sick of making PowerPoint slides? Do you think the program ultimately makes you more or less effective as a leader and/or public speaker? Do you work in an organization that's gone blind with PowerPoint slideshows?

Lemme know....


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 10:15 AM | | Comments (6)
        

Gizmodo editor's house raided as part of "stolen" iPhone probe

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 It's the geeky, Silicon Valley version of "COPS." Sadly, however, to our inappropriate amusement, no Tasers were used.

The drama deepened yesterday when Gizmodo reported that its editor's house was recently raided by California authorities investigating the case of the missing 4th generation iPhone.

In case you've been unplugged for the past week, Gizmodo was approached by a dude who claimed he may or may not have had a missing iPhone prototype. So Gizmodo decided to pay him $5,000 to see if what he had was indeed an iPhone prototype.

After taking the phone apart and writing numerous posts about it, Gizmodo returned the phone to Apple. All along the tech blog has claimed it didn't know it was Apple's until they pretty much confirmed it was, and then promptly made moves to return it.

That's Gizmodo's story and I'm sure they'll be sticking to it. Everyone's watching this case and wondering if Gizmodo and its owner, Gawker Media, will successfully protect themselves under the journalist shield law. But John Gruber, of Daring Fireball, puts it succinctly when he says the state of California's argument might be: "Hey, you committed a felony."

Now, some have raised questions about the validity of the search of the editor's home. Wired has a story that points out journalists must be subpoenaed, and that they're not subject to unannounced searches.

Meanwhile, I can't help but wonder if Gizmodo routinely pays thousands of dollars for gadgets that may or may not be authentic. If that's part of their normal business practice, then I could see their defense holding water.

But really -- who pays thousands of dollars for a "prototype" if they're not sure it's the real thing? And if they're sure it's the real thing, then they probably shouldn't be buying it in the first place. "News" orgs shouldn't be buying things that are known to belong to someone else.

This whole thing is a mess and, right now, I don't really feel sorry for Gizmodo. What do you think?


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Posted by Gus Sentementes at 8:55 AM | | Comments (11)
Categories: *NEWS*, Geeks, Smartphones, West Coast
        

April 26, 2010

The CEO as editor?

Nike's CEO Mark Parker recounts a conversation he had with Apple CEO Steve Jobs, who told him what stuff to get rid of. [Short video provided by Fast Company from its Innovation Uncensored conference last week.]


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Posted by Gus Sentementes at 9:26 AM | | Comments (0)
        

"Mix and mingle" on Wednesday night

cocktails.jpg

Just got this week's edition of the Startup Digest for Baltimore and one event stood out because it involves cool people and drinking: The Mid-Atlantic Venture Association-hosted Mix-and-Mingle event.

The social will take place Wednesday early evening at Langermann's in Canton. Hope to see you there. (I hope to be there.)

 

Speaking of startups, in case you missed it, the New York Times had an interesting column about "lean startups" this past Sunday. 

 


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Posted by Gus Sentementes at 9:06 AM | | Comments (0)
Categories: Events (Baltimore area)
        

April 22, 2010

Verizon FiOS: get ready for a public hearing, Baltimore-style

verizon_fios.jpg It seems the resentment with Verizon continues to build in Baltimore as a city council member (Bill Cole) is calling for a public hearing next week to air out the reasons why the telecom company isn't installing its next-generation FiOS network in the city.

Cole and other critics of the company say Verizon has avoided the city while expanding the network in counties around Baltimore, and putting profits over fairness. Verizon, on the other hand, points to other cities it has and has not built the network in and said they're following a long-term growth plan. Plus, they argue, they never said they wouldn't roll it out in Baltimore. They're just not doing it in the near future.

Telecom companies are probably going to come under increasing fire to expand their networks in a way that's perceived as fair by the public, as the notion of broadband equality takes hold. The FCC has made expansion of higher-capacity broadband a major part of its 10-year plan to improve the nation's internet infrastructure.

So, if you're in Baltimore and want to speak your views on Verizon's lack of FiOS in Baltimore, head to City Hall at 5 p.m. this Wednesday to make your case. City councilmembers and Verizon officials will be there to listen.


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 8:56 AM | | Comments (4)
Categories: *NEWS*
        

April 21, 2010

Three reasons why the guy who found the 4G iPhone and sold it to Gizmodo is a dweeb who lives in his parents' basement

parents-basement.jpg

(Above, an example of the kind of parents' basement the 4G iPhone seller may be living in right now)

* First off, $5,000. That's all you could get for it? In your world, where you play nonstop with your XBox and live in your parents' basement, $5,000 is certainly a lot of money. It's just enough to help you buy that heavily used/modified 2002 Subaru WRX you've been lusting after for years (with a few grand tossed in by your parents) so you could drag-race with the dudes you meet every Friday night after drinking in Redwood City.

* Second, you gave up long-term revenue and positive publicity (as the guy who publicly returned Apple's lost 4G iPhone) for a short-term gain. Again, $5K is a lot of dough for someone still living in his parents' basement, but a) you have to pay taxes on it (unless maybe Gizmodo paid you in unmarked bills?) and b) you have to remain secretive about it out of fear of being criminally charged.

* Third, if you don't live in your parents' basement, you at least used to. Dweeb profile studies have shown that most men who read Engadget and Gizmodo have, at one point in their lives, lived extensively in their parents' basement. I should know. But that's beside the point.

Mind you, this is all just a theory on my part. What do you think? Vote in the poll below!


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Posted by Gus Sentementes at 12:59 PM | | Comments (7)
Categories: Geeks
        

News Corp. buys gaming company

Is this the beginning of a trend -- news companies getting into online gaming to attract and retain eyeballs on their sites?

The LA Times business blog -- Company Town -- reports that News Corp., which own the WSJ and Fox, has bought a small game developer based in San Francisco. The developer, Irata Labs, has made a social game for Twitter called Spymaster (I've never played it).

Irata also made a tool called iList Micro, which "let users search Twitter as they would classified advertising sections, to find items offered for sale by ZIP code or category."

It would be interesting to see if other big media companies follow suit. But so many are hurting with big debt that acquisitions may not be in the picture for awhile.


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 8:26 AM | | Comments (0)
        

April 20, 2010

Hey CrackBerry lover-lovers: OS 6.0 got leaked

Tech blogs were abuzz today with news of a BlackBerry OS 6.0 leak -- the latest operating system for the popular handsets.

:: InformationWeek calls it a "major revision" that will offer multitouch, a new browser, and an updated inbox. Hooray for BlackBerry.

:: Boy Genius Report, I think, got the scoop earlier today on the new OS that reverberated across the Web. They've got some pretty slick screen shots of the new OS in action. Makes me definitely want to put down my iPhone and play with a BlackBerry as soon as this new OS comes out.


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 4:44 PM | | Comments (1)
Categories: Gadgets, Smartphones
        

Google can't satisfy every search -- uh, what about Bing?

This is creative.

I just spotted this pic snapped by Baltimore's Dave Troy outside a church in Frederick, Md., a couple days ago. He posted it to his Twitter. Good eye, Dave.

googleSearch.jpg


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 11:41 AM | | Comments (0)
        

Gizmodo's scoop: new iPhone revealed?

Gizmodo paid a source an undisclosed amount of money $5,000 to gain possession of an Apple phone that was found in a California bar. The blog has covered it a bunch of times already this week.

Here's the supposed "full" story about how the phone was found and ended up in Gizmodo's hands -- but without the interesting details on how much El Giz paid for it. Giz also has an official-looking letter from Apple asking for its property back. I'm convinced that Giz has a real Apple iPhone in its posession.

I'm just not sold on the fact that this is anything but a working model used by engineers. I think the one that ends up in consumers' hands will just look better. Guess we'll find out in a few months if the version Gizmodo had was the real deal.....


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 10:14 AM | | Comments (1)
Categories: *NEWS*, Gadgets, Smartphones
        

The kitty and the iPad

This is an amusing video bringing together two of my favorite topics: kitties and tech! (On a side note, would you let your kitty touch your shiny new toy with its paws and claws?)

Unfortunately, what the video doesn't capture is the cat's disappointment that the iPad doesn't play Flash-based videos. Hehehe.

P.S. Thanks to my wife for spotting this and sending it along to BaltTech.


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 9:30 AM | | Comments (1)
Categories: Gadgets
        

Artscape's Betascape moving forward

artscape-logo.jpgGot an email yesterday from Tracey Baskerville, spokeswoman for the Baltimore Office of Promotion and the Arts, who said that the organization will "move forward with some portion" of the technology exhibit for Artscape this year.

Last week, I reported that a volunteer group called BmoreSmart had pitched a proposal to feature interactive technologies and tech-related exhibits at the hugely popular Artscape festival from July 16-18.

BaltTech will bring you more details about this tech exhibition, called Betascape, as the planning of it unfolds. Meanwhile, if you want to get involved, visit BmoreSmart and volunteer.


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Posted by Gus Sentementes at 9:15 AM | | Comments (0)
Categories: *NEWS*, Events (Baltimore area)
        

April 19, 2010

Google Auto-fill: a window into our relationships?

I had some fun with Google's auto-fill feature today and it made me realize that there may be a LOT of people out there in need of couples' counseling. What do you think?

google-my-boyfriend.gif


google-my-girlfriend.gif

Hit the jump for "my husband" and "my wife."

google-my-husband.gif


google-my-wife.gif


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 1:45 PM | | Comments (1)
Categories: Geeks
        

True story? Top-secret next-generation iPhone 4G found hanging out in a California bar

Over the weekend, the gadget blogs absolutely lit up with speculation that an iPhone 4G -- the rumored next-generation handset expected this summer -- was actually found in a San Jose, Calif. bar. (This sounds like a geek joke: "Two iPhone 4Gs walk into a bar and one turns to the other....")

Of course, images and videos of it have filled the Web. So far, gadget-blog Gizmodo seems to have it in hand, while Engadget has followed the news, too. It's rumored, btw, that Apple Inc. did lose a prototype and wants it back.

It'd be interesting to see if Apple DOES move to try to claim this phone, if it is indeed theirs. In the meantime, for a company that loves secrecy as much as Apple, if this indeed is the iPhone 4G, that's gotta be a major gaffe on their part.


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Posted by Gus Sentementes at 11:11 AM | | Comments (2)
Categories: Gadgets, Smartphones, Wireless
        

Boston Marathon athlete tracking

The Boston Marathon is about to kick off. If you know someone in the race and you want to track their progress, you can do so on the official race website. Just enter the runner's bib number or first and last name.

Go to this page.

(I'm not a runner, but I love this use of technology.)

Here's the finish line, courtesy of @cyktrussell via Twitter:

Feel it?


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Posted by Gus Sentementes at 7:57 AM | | Comments (0)
Categories: *NEWS*
        

April 16, 2010

Iceland volcano eruption: amazing photos

The Boston Globe's great feature -- The Big Picture -- offers some great photos of the impact of the volcano eruption in Iceland. Check it out.


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 9:35 AM | | Comments (1)
Categories: *NEWS*
        

Baltimore iPad app makers gettin' busy

Without an iPad in hand months ago, the folks at Fastspot in Baltimore used pieces of paper to mock-up how they'd play the new word game they designed. Watch the video!
 

My story about Baltimore-area iPad/iPhone developers hit the paper and the web today -- check it out here. You should also take a gander at the video we shot of Fastspot, a Baltimore interactive design firm, and the iPad game it built: Jumbalaya.

Interested in another iPad app by a Baltimore company? Check out TwitterTube, by Emagine Web Consulting of Pikesville.

One of the more interesting things is that there's a growing ecosystem of businesses that are sprouting up to support iPad/iPhone and other mobile apps.

For instance, Gregg Weiss, a Florida businessman, operates two Websites -- iPad App Developers and iPhone App Developers -- that links developers with companies needing someone to build the apps for them. Gregg also works closely with two companies that help market mobile apps: Appular and Appency.

I think the question that's on everyone's mind is if the iPad will turn out to be as big -- or bigger -- than the iPhone? Or will it be a moderate success?



This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 8:21 AM | | Comments (2)
Categories: *NEWS*, Apps, Gadgets
        

April 15, 2010

The Tweet smell of history

libraryofcongress.jpg

Imagine your tweets about what you had for lunch and your riffs on American Idol being preserved in the same hallowed halls as the Declaration of Independence. 

One of Twitter's founders disclosed yesterday on the company blog that the Library of Congress (picture above) was interested in preserving the entire digital archive of public tweets made on the micro-blogging service. Founder Biz Stone said 55 million Tweets are created daily and the number is rising.

So what do you think? Is saving public tweets a historical imperative -- or is this a waste of time/money on the part of the world's biggest library?

 


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 9:29 AM | | Comments (3)
Categories: *NEWS*
        

April 14, 2010

HTC Droid Incredible spotted on Verizon's Website

HTC-Incredible.jpg

The onslaught of Google's Droid-powered phones continues:

Engadget spotted the HTC Droid Incredible on a Verizon Website today, and snagged a photo of it for its blog.

Not much is known about the phone except it's expected to launch April 29, for $199. 

Any Droid phone fanboys and girls out there? What's your early take on the Incredible? 


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 5:25 PM | | Comments (3)
Categories: *NEWS*, Gadgets, Wireless
        

China earthquake: today's available online data

If you're interested in the latest earthquake to hit China, which left thousands of casualties, the U.S. Geological Survey's website is a good place to see some data and maps.

:: Here's a list of all the recent quakes in Asia -- the China quake's magnitude of 6.9 is highlighted in red.

:: And here's a map of the major quake and others recently in Asia.

:: And here's a selection of detailed maps that focus exclusively on this most recent quake. You have different maps to choose from, i.e. population, shaker intensity (see below), etc.

intensity-china-quake.jpg


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 11:33 AM | | Comments (0)
        

Apple iPad international launch postponed

apple-ipad_1.jpgNewsflash: Looks like the international launch for the iPad, slated for late April, will be postponed a month, due to high demand, according to Apple. Ouch. I guess high demand is a good problem, right?

Fresh off Apple's Website this morning:

Although we have delivered more than 500,000 iPads during its first week, demand is far higher than we predicted and will likely continue to exceed our supply over the next several weeks as more people see and touch an iPad™. We have also taken a large number of pre-orders for iPad 3G models for delivery by the end of April.

Faced with this surprisingly strong US demand, we have made the difficult decision to postpone the international launch of iPad by one month, until the end of May. We will announce international pricing and begin taking online pre-orders on Monday, May 10. We know that many international customers waiting to buy an iPad will be disappointed by this news, but we hope they will be pleased to learn the reason—the iPad is a runaway success in the US thus far.


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 9:01 AM | | Comments (0)
Categories: *NEWS*
        

Ad Nauseum: Twitter, iPhone and ads, ads, ads

ack-ads-choke.jpgWill advertising choke, or at least distract, from the user experience of Twitter and the iPhone?

Yesterday, Twitter unveiled its "promoted tweets" program, where advertisers will pay to have their normal tweets featured on search results. This is just the first step of Twitter's monetization program.

The company, to its credit, is treading carefully in rolling out its money-making plans. Still, at some point, investors will start to get impatient and will expect Twitter to start making some real money.

Apple, on the other hand, is making real money. And it wants to make a lot more. Last week, Steve Jobs of Apple spent a lot of time crowing about iAds -- the new platform for ad-serving that will be including in the newest installment of the iPhone operating system, due out this summer. (Here's a sarcastic Slate article on the plan.)

Developers and marketers are probably fairly excited about the opportunity to tap the iPhone's strengths in crafting new, interactive ads for its users. But as a user, you have to worry if every app, free or otherwise, will soon get choked with ads to the point where you're tapping the screen half the time just to get rid of them.

Developers and marketers wouldn't bombard us with ads, would they?

Yet, so many of us have enjoy the idea of "free" -- free apps, free content, free Web services -- that maybe we'll have to endure more ads in our (mobile) Internet experience if we hope to avoid paying for apps and content most of the time. Take the poll:

 


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Posted by Gus Sentementes at 8:45 AM | | Comments (2)
Categories: *NEWS*
        

April 13, 2010

Baltimore's Artscape could expand to tech -- *not definite yet*

artscapecrowd.jpg

Yesterday, I reported that a group of volunteer organizers with BmoreSmart are pitching to add a tech component to the city's annual summer Artscape festival -- the biggest free festival in the country.

UPDATE, 10:00 a.m.: Heather Sarkissian, head of BmoreSmart, which organized the pitch, just told me that their tech proposal was quickly approved. (That was fast, since it was filed yesterday.)

UPDATE, 11:00 a.m.: I got my signals crossed -- the Betascape proposal has NOT been officially approved by the Baltimore Office of Promotion and the Arts. BOPA officials plan to meet with BmoreSmart on Monday, April 19, to discuss the idea of Betascape. 

The group has ambitious hopes and ideas for raising the local profile of tech entrepreneurs  and innovators, and they believe Artscape is a perfect venue for engaging with a broader, creative audience. They'd call it Betascape.

The tech they feature, they hope, will largely complement the art, exhibits and musical and visual performances that are now a staple of the festival.  As you learn more about their proposal, let us know in the poll below if you'd like to see an interactive tech component added to Artscape.


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 10:00 AM | | Comments (0)
        

Venture capital fundraising stunk in first quarter 2010

The National Venture Capital Association reported yesterday that the first quarter of this year was not a good period for venture capital fundraising.

Venture capital declined 31 percent in the 1Q '10 compared to 1Q '09, and there was a 44 percent decline in the number of participating funds, according to NVCA. Have we reached bottom yet?

Below is a graph:

venturecapfundraising.gif



This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 9:07 AM | | Comments (0)
Categories: *NEWS*
        

Google Docs: You've come a long way, baby

Google Docs blows my mind. The Internet giant continues to make the case for what can be possible with publishing tools that operate solely in the cloud. I probably use Google Docs for nearly half of my personal publishing (word processing/spreadsheets) needs. I also do work in MS Word and Apple's Pages program.

Check out this short Google video on the latest updates to Google Docs:




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Posted by Gus Sentementes at 8:39 AM | | Comments (1)
        

Apple Store down for update -- new MacBook Pros on the way?

News flash: The Apple Store is down for an update and rumors are a-flying that Apple is introducing a refreshed line-up of MacBook Pro laptops.

Macrumors.com has the leaked specifications on the computers. So does AppleInsider. Apple fans are still still smarting from buying the iPad -- anybody gonna buy a laptop today, too?

UPDATE: The store is back up and there are new MacBook Pros for sale.


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 8:25 AM | | Comments (2)
Categories: *NEWS*
        

April 12, 2010

Microsoft's new Kin phones -- a semi-smart social phone

kin-phone.jpg

Partners Microsoft, Sharp and Verizon announced a new pair of phones today called Kin, which are built around social messaging services like Twitter and Facebook. The phones are really geared toward people who are constantly chit-chatting via such status services and text-messaging. They won't run third-party applications.

(Whuh? A phone making news because it won't try to have a huge app store?)

Here are some links to learn about the Kin: Engadget's hands-on; CNET's article; BetaNews' take on it; and Microsoft's official news release on the devices.

Watch this video of the Kin demo from Engadget. Notice the new style of user interface for the Kin. Could you see yourself using a phone like this?

 


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 4:19 PM | | Comments (0)
Categories: *NEWS*, Apps, Gadgets, Smartphones
        

Google tablet coming soon?

google-tablet.jpgThe Apple iPad just hit store shelves and early adopters' mailboxes earlier this month. Now we may have another pad on the horizon: the still unnamed/unconfirmed Google Android tablet.

The tech world's abuzz after a New York Times story all but made it official that Google is "soon expected" to release a tablet.

For people who took a pass on the iPad, would you consider buying a tablet that operated on Google's Android platform? (Don't forget -- Microsoft is supposedly entering the tablet sphere with HP coming out with its own device(s).)

 

Take the Google tablet poll:


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 4:00 PM | | Comments (3)
        

Palm for sale?

palm-pre-plus.jpgPalm Inc., creator of the Pre smartphone and which dominated the handheld PDA market at one time, is reportedly for sale, according to Bloomberg and its three unnamed sources.

The Pre smartphone, which debuted last year and has had lackluster sales, has not saved the company. Many tech observers have speculated that the company would need to find a buyer to survive.

Check out the full Bloomberg story here.


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 8:46 AM | | Comments (0)
Categories: *NEWS*
        

Adobe Creative Suite 5 debuts today -- will you buy?

adobe%20logo.jpg

If you're a design geek, you probably know this news already: The latest installment of Adobe Inc.'s popular Web/publishing design software -- Creative Suite 5, aka CS5 -- debuts today.

Adobe will preview the top five new features of CS5 online, at 11 a.m. ET. Here's the link to the company's site where it'll take place: http://cs5launch.adobe.com/

Adobe's been in the tech news lately thanks to Apple, which has taken steps to cut out Adobe's Flash platform -- common for video and animations on the Web -- from the iPhone and iPad. Apple's decision has caused tension between the two companies.

Check out this angry blog post from an Adobe employee, who tells Apple to go screw themselves. Really. He says that.





This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 8:30 AM | | Comments (0)
Categories: *NEWS*, Apps, Web Dev & Apps
        

April 9, 2010

Wachovia online banking restored after being down for hours today

wachovia_logo.jpg

Update, 5:30 p.m.: After a long day for Wachovia customers, I got official word from the company late this afternoon that the online banking service is (should be) fully operational for everyone. If you want to learn how this news story unfolded today, just read on below.

 

***********

11:24 am: Reports have surfaced on Twitter that people are having trouble logging in to their online banking accounts at Wachovia.

I shot off an email to the bank's communications department for comment and clarification. Waiting to see what the word is I got word back -- see the latest update below. A spokeswoman confirmed the systems problem to me, but also said they haven't posted a notice to customers on their Website because the situation is "fluid."

Reports are also surfacing on Google News.

In the meantime, any Wachovia customers out there willing to send me a screenshot of what you're seeing when you try to log in?


UPDATE, 12:48 p.m.:I'm starting to get screen shots from BaltTech readers. Here's what it looks like for many Wachovia customers right now.
wachovia_ERROR.gif UPDATE, 12:53: Check the comments. A reader says this outage is part of a planned transition that Wachovia previously announced to customers. Check your email inboxes, folks!

UPDATE, 1:45: Aimee Worsley, a Wachovia spokeswoman, just left me a voicemail saying that the outage was due to a "systems problem", and was NOT a planned outage. Sit tight, folks. In italics below is her emailed response to me:

Wachovia Online Banking was impacted by a systems issue. We apologize to any customers who are experiencing an intermittent disruption in service while conducting their financial activities through Wachovia Online banking, mobile banking, and Wells Fargo Advisors Online (formally Wachovia Securities) for brokerage services. Customers can continue to conduct their financial activities through our phone centers, ATMs, or stores and brokerage clients can also conduct their financial activities through their financial advisor. We are working to correct the situation.

We know that customers hold us to a high standard of trust and reliability and we want to assure them that all data about their accounts remain safe and secure. We appreciate customers' patience and sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. We are working to resolve the situation as quickly as possible.

(I saw some posts on your blog where customers are attributing this to the conversion of credit card accounts from Wachovia to Wells Fargo--this service disruption is unrelated to that conversion or any other merger-related activity.)

UPDATE, 4:22pm: Some Wachovia customers are telling me via Twitter that they're able to log in to the site, but it's slow. 

 


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 11:24 AM | | Comments (44)
Categories: *NEWS*
        

Wikileaks: the whistleblowing website speaking truth to power

wikileaks1.jpgI've watched and been fascinated by the growth of Wikileaks.org, a lean but powerful site that whistleblowers can use to submit information all over the world.

Governments and corporations have tried to undermine the site over the last couple years, to no avail. Thanks to the Internet, one can arguably say the planet has never had such a powerful source for disruptive news and information as Wikileaks, founded by Julian Assange.

The Washington Post's Story Lab highlighted a great article in Mother Jones that profiles the Australian man behind the site. Take a look here.

To whet your appetite, here's the first paragraph from the Mother Jones story. Go read!

The clock struck 3 a.m. Julian Assange slept soundly inside a guarded private compound in Nairobi, Kenya. Suddenly, six men with guns emerged from the darkness. A day earlier, they had disabled the alarm system on the electric fence and buried weapons by the pool. Catching a guard by surprise, they commanded him to hit the ground. He obliged, momentarily, then jumped up and began shouting. As the rest of the compound's security team rushed outside, the intruders fled into the night.


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 9:35 AM | | Comments (0)
Categories: Media
        

Hey Google: Check out Baltimore's Google Fiber logo!

KalGoogleFiberimage.JPG

The folks behind the city's effort to lure the Google Fiber for Communities project to Baltimore roped in another creative volunteer: award-winning editorial cartoonist Kevin "Kal" Kallaugher.

Kal, who now works for The Economist magazine, was previously the sharp, smart and funny cartoonist for The Baltimore Sun. Kal designed the Baltimore-themed Google logo above, which also graces the official Website of Baltimore's Google Fiber effort.

In case you didn't know: a couple months ago, Google announced they would build an ultra-high-speed fiber-optic-based broadband network in a lucky community in the U.S. More than 1,100 cities and towns sent in applications to Google in hopes of getting the project. Baltimore was one of them. Communities across the country are literally begging for Google to take them into the next generation of broadband Internet.

If you're a fan of Kal's work (and an iPhone owner), you'll be happy to know he's got his own iPhone app that features his work. Check it out.


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 8:47 AM | | Comments (1)
Categories: East Coast, Geeks
        

April 8, 2010

Microsoft's "Steve Ballmer" reviews Apple's iPad

Good for a laugh this afternoon:

Thanks to @sengseng for sharing this on Twitter!


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 3:48 PM | | Comments (1)
        

Clear (formerly Xohm) back in Baltimore with 4G wireless?

Just spotted this Clear vehicle in Baltimore. Could WiMAX 4G finally be on the way back to the city? Please?Twitterer @spamspam posted a photo today showing a Clear van on the streets of Baltimore. (The photo is clearer here.)

For those gadget geeks who care, Clear is the inheritor of Sprint's XOHM network based on the 4th generation WiMax protocol for mobile broadband Internet.

Sprint started up XOHM (pronounced Zome) in the city a couple years ago, but the service went offline several months ago as Sprint transitioned the network to another company called Clear.

About a month ago, I spoke with a Clear representative who said the network -- which offers fast high-speed internet over the air and without a landline -- will eventually reboot in Baltimore.

But there was no definite timeframe for its return. Seeing the marketing vans in the street, however, is a good sign.

Having Clear open up shop in Baltimore would definitely give people another option to the usual Verizon/Comcast/AT&T mobile broadband choices.


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 2:39 PM | | Comments (8)
Categories: *NEWS*, Wireless
        

Apple introduces sweeping software enhancements for iPhone, iPad

iphone4OS.jpg

Frankly, I'm a little sick tired of Apple news, but I have to take a post to mark the latest occasion today:

Starting at 1 p.m., Apple is expected to unveil the latest updates and enhancements to its iPhone operating system, which covers the mobile phone, the iPod Touch and the new iPad tablet computer.

Aside from hoping for true multi-tasking support, there doesn't seem to be a consensus about what to expect with Apple's latest update to the platform. We'll find out soon enough.

I'll try to bring you the highlights, if not a live video or audio feed, in the next few moments... Stay tuned and watch this post.

 

:: Engadget has a live blog -- but no live feed -- here.

:: My first look: It looks like this is a pretty significant iPhone software update. Multitasking and a whole host of other features for developers that will likely keep them busy for the next year developing new apps.  Good news for iPhone fans of Pandora, who'll finally be able to listen to that music service while doing other things on their phone.

 

:: Another interesting tidbit: Apple is introducing "folders" to help people organize their apps. The result: you can cram over 2,000 apps now onto your iPhone's screen vs. 180 before, according to Steve Jobs.

:: iPhone targeting the enterprise: Apple allowing companies to wirelessly sync apps with employee phones.

:: Apple diving into live online social gaming (!) This is big.

:: iAd: Apple's introducing a mobile ad network for those developers to integrate into the apps they give away for free. Apple gives them a 60/40 cut of the ad revenue. Also, Apple is making it possible for more highly interactive mobile ads.


Watch some fun commentary from Bwana.tv:

 

Watch live video from Bwana.TV on Justin.tv


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 12:52 PM | | Comments (1)
        

Baltimore releases Google Fiber application

Can you get your city or town to release its Google Fiber application? If so, post a link to it below.

In what may be the first instance across the country, Baltimore City released a copy of the application for the Google Fiber for Communities pilot project -- a 19-page document that attempts to persuade Google to invest up to a billion dollars for a new ultra-high-speed fiber-optic broadband network in the city.

Baltimore was one of more than 1,100 communities that submitted an application to Google by the deadline, March 26th. Many communities are hoping to lure Google's pilot project because they see it as a technological and economic shot in the arm for their local economies.

The Baltimore application was completed by a team of volunteers and city officials, who recently released a copy to The Baltimore Sun. (The official Website for Baltimore's effort is here.)

Here's the Baltimore application:


Google Fiber for Communities Baltimore Municipal Response COMPLETE.r
This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 8:24 AM | | Comments (1)
Categories: *NEWS*
        

April 7, 2010

iPad problems

ipadimages.jpgIt seems that some of the 300,000-plus early adopters who now own an iPad have discovered not everything's peachy in new-gadget-land.

The most common problem that's been reported on chat boards is, ahem, challenges with Wi-Fi connectivity.

By challenges, I mean that some people complain that they can hardly use their Wi-Fi connection at all.

Others complain that they frequently and automatically get logged off a Wi-Fi network, and peskily have to sign in each time they want to surf the Web. Annoying!

The TechCrunch blog kickstarted the iPad Wi-Fi discussion on Monday with a post.

Meanwhile, Apple has posted a support document to its Website that coaches people on how to handle the Wi-Fi logout problem. But there's no official word yet from Apple on how people should handle the weak Wi-Fi signal problem.

Wonder if this will turn into a little PR nightmare for Apple.... Let's see how this turns out, shall we?


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 1:55 PM | | Comments (8)
Categories: *NEWS*
        

Touch screens: The death of touch typing?

Take a moment to watch this popular Web video of how a 2.5 year old adroitly handles a brand new iPad that her dad gave her to play with. Remember: She's 2.5 years old! If you're reading this blog, chances are you're in your 20s or older -- and I'd bet the closest touch interface you came in contact with at age 2 was nothing. Now, I have an 18-month-old daughter who loves to handle my iPhone. She knows how to open apps and how to play with the ones that make animal sounds. She also knows how to set the music on the iPod we keep in her room to play her sleepy-time music.

And today, we get news from the Gartner research group that these touch interfaces for computers are going to be quite popular for PCs in five years time. I believe it.

From Gartner: 

"What we're going to see is the younger generation beginning to use touchscreen computers ahead of enterprises," said Leslie Fiering, research vice president at Gartner. "By 2015, we expect more than 50 percent of PCs purchased for users under the age of 15 will have touchscreens, up from fewer than 2 percent in 2009. On the other hand, we are predicting that fewer than 10 percent of PCs sold to enterprises in 2015 for mainstream knowledge workers will have touchscreens."

Many have lamented the death of penmanship (is it really taught in school anymore?) as the keyboard and computers rose in prominence in education. Now I wonder in a generation, or less, if we'll be lamenting the death of touch typing skills in the face of touch screen computing?

Am I crazy? With voice recognition vastly improving, people will be able to "write" with their voices more easily. Already, word recognition software can automatically complete your words, so you don't have to bother typing the whole word out. What do you think?


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 12:32 PM | | Comments (3)
Categories: Big Ideas
        

Are you a ninja?

The Wall Street Journal has a fun story about the growth of the term "ninja" in job titles. Are you a ninja in your job?

From the article:

In 2009, the growth of "ninja" as a new job description far outpaced the growth of other trendy titles, according to LinkedIn Corp., a Web site that provides networking for more than 65 million professionals. While the numbers are still small on LinkedIn—some 800 current or former ninjas have public profiles on the site—their growth has skyrocketed past other fashionable careers such as "gurus" and "evangelists," says Monica Rogati, a scientist at LinkedIn who finds patterns in jobs data.

It's harder to quantify precisely what a ninja is.


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 8:41 AM | | Comments (1)
Categories: Geeks
        

April 5, 2010

Hands-on with Dave Troy's iPad

daveTroyiPad1

Tech entrepreneur and Google-Fiber-for-Baltimore volunteer Dave Troy (left) was among the first to get an iPad on Saturday. He shares with BaltTech his thoughts on the new device. Feel free to share your thoughts of the iPad in the comments below.

 

This morning (Saturday) I bicycled to the Annapolis Mall Apple Store with my wife to pick up the iPad I had reserved a few days ago (16GB, WiFi-only, $499.00). Predictably the lines were long and people were excited; at 9:00 the giddy staffers were working the crowd into a frenzy of applause, which seemed a bit much for the occasion. We're at the mall; it's 9am — just sell us the dang gadget.

The sales process was handled efficiently; I was given ample opportunity to play with the device before completing my purchase (foreplay?) and I must say that first impressions of iPad are breathtaking. The thing is flat-out beautiful. Sure, it's like a giant iPod Touch, but it feels just-right and very different all at the same time. Everything seems new again, and that comes from an obsessive attention to detail: the way the page curls work in the iBooks reader app, the multiple modes of use for portrait and landscape orientations, the way it sits in your hands, and the devastating speed of the thing. It has been said it seems about 50% faster than the iPhone 3GS; that's about right.

I challenge anyone to use iPad and not come away thinking two things: 1) I want one, and 2) everything else seems obsolete. It is that good; it's the perfect machine for browsing content, exploring interesting apps, keeping in the kitchen or by the bed, and generally just using for whatever you might be doing casually. Contrary to some early speculation, it is perfectly suited for writing and taking notes, especially in the landscape orientation.

I wrote this review on the iPad and save a few minor annoyances was almost entirely unconscious of the on-screen keyboard. The only nit might be the requirement to switch keyboard modes to access numbers and some punctuation, but you do get used to it. (A keyboard accessory is available for folks with that need.)

The email app is easy to setup, just as on the iPhone, and is a joy to use. Web browsing is fast and seamless, and HTML5 videos are awesome; they appear in-place in a web page and a simple spread of the fingers floats them into full-screen mode. It is simple, intuitive and fun. Browsing on a standard PC or Mac will seem dull once you have had a little time with the iPad. And so far I have not missed Flash once.

I could go on waxing poetic about its virtues, but you will find a lot of that in every review. While I do not consider myself a fanboy Apple user, I do tend to think they have gotten many design details right lately and that the iPad is going to be a big deal, primarily because it advances us past the 25-year old mouse-plus-keyboard paradigm that Apple popularized with the Macintosh.

 

But the device does have weaknesses: the glass face of the device is doomed. I have seen plenty of people with shattered iPhone and iPod touch displays, and it is just a matter of time until you see your first shattered iPad. Its sheer surface area makes it much more susceptible to damage, and the thin rubberized $39 case that Apple sells as an option seems too little to protect it in a 3-foot drop to the pavement. But all electronics are vulnerable; you will just want to think a little bit about how you handle iPad. Its light-but-heavy 1.5 pounds are going to find you using two hands more often than not.

The screen shows every fingerprint and will need frequent cleaning, but it doesn't get in the way of overall usage. The iTunes syncing environment, familiar from the iPod and iPhone, is just as wonky as ever, and it took my Mac a few minutes to get fully comfortable with my iPad (which I have named "Spud") and to get properly synced. I pushed some songs and photos from my machine and found it to work as expected.

iPadAnnapolis1

Consuming content on the device, either by Safari or the iTunes, App Store, or iBooks apps works pretty well. I would expect that over time the reliance on iTunes-USB syncing will be phased out in favor of an iPad-plus-Cloud computing experience. Apple is currently building a datacenter in North Carolina to meet a large anticipated demand for cloud infrastructure.

I wanted to try downloading third-party ePub and PDF-format e-books for use in the iBooks application but was unable to do so, despite lots of discussion online that Apple supports the open ePub format. However iBooks does make available a large selection of free, public-domain titles from Project Gutenberg, which can help you seed your library.

The Kindle app also works well, but iBooks is much prettier. I would expect the next version of the Kindle app to be better suited for use on the iPad. Speaking of apps, there are a good number of iPad-optimized apps, and it does run existing iPhone apps just fine — though that experience (running a small-screen app on a big-screen device, either small or enlarged with pixellation) leaves a lot to be desired. Still, it has an impressive library of software out of the box.

I was particularly impressed with the iPad WeatherBug app — this thing just shines with any kind of map — and the National Geographic world atlas map will be great for my kids. I downloaded the (quite beautiful) Truphone VOIP app and was able to make a voice call right away. Long term, this functionality could cheaply offset some of your cellphone monthly minutes.

I used Apple's Pages app to compose this review ($9.99, part of its iWork suite) and it is beautiful and functional, perfect for nearly anyone's writing needs. The battery seems unstoppable. I have been using it for several hours and it shows no real sign of depletion. If they can get this chipset into the iPhone (bet on it) it will be a game-changer there as well.

This is the perfect device for use on an airplane — better than the tiny, anemic MacBook Air, and enough battery to power you through a LA to London flight.

Paola Antonelli, curator of design at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, has said that great design is what happens when someone creates something that the world didn't know it needed. The iPad is that thing.

Left unchecked, we would have ridden our clunky mice and keyboards into the 25th century; thank goodness Apple had the vision to come along and try something new. The iPad may not be perfect, but it certainly fills a need — and comes pretty darn close.


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 8:27 AM | | Comments (4)
Categories: Gadgets
        

April 2, 2010

Exclusive! Steve Jobs comments to BaltTech

steveJobs.jpgA couple days ago, I put up a blog poll asking people if they would buy an iPhone if it came to Verizon's network.

I got a very good response from the Verizon lovers (and some AT&T haters).

I was pleasantly amused to discover this morning that "Steve Jobs" of Apple had left an interesting note in the comments of that post.

Skeptically, I shot the real Steve Jobs an email at an address that's not too difficult to find, but which I'm not going to reprint here.

I asked him if he had left the comment on my blog, and he replied, via his iPhone......

"Not me."

Below is the full email exchange:

(from Steve Jobs)

Not me.

Sent from my iPhone

On Apr 2, 2010, at 5:33 AM, "Sentementes, Gus" wrote:

Hi Mr. Jobs, Sorry to bother you with this, but I wanted to make sure someone who left a comment on my blog in your name was actually you. If it is not, I will delete it. The link to my blog post is here: http://weblogs.baltimoresun.com/news/technology/2010/03/verizon_iphone_would_you_buy.html

And here is the comment that was left:

Sorry to bust the Verizon bubble, but the answer is still No. The CDMA is in the works for China currently. Verizon will not have our iPhone until the full release of LTE in late 2012. The exclusive agreement with AT&T is coming to an end this year but they will still carry it. We will be adding T-Mobile this year though in order to Legitimize all the current iPhone users unlocked on their network. Steve Jobs 1 Infinite Loop, MS 111-HOM Cupertino, CA 95014 sjobs@apple.com www.apple.com

Thanks for your time.

Best,

Gus G. Sentementes

Tech reporter

Baltimore Sun


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 3:08 PM | | Comments (3)
Categories: *NEWS*
        

The JooJoo tablet: a first look

Uber-tech blog Engadget got its hands yesterday on the JooJoo -- a tablet computer that hopes to offer a counterpoint to Apple's iPad. Take a look at the video walk-through of the device.


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 10:29 AM | | Comments (0)
Categories: *NEWS*
        

April 1, 2010

Seeking Saturday iPad buyers

Will you be waiting in line at an Apple Store or a Best Buy in Maryland for Saturday's iPad launch? If so, I want to talk to you!

I'm looking to interview some folks who'll be buying (or receiving by mail) an iPad this Saturday. I'm working on a story about expectations and widespread gadget lust for the device.

Shoot me an email at gus.sentementes@baltsun.com if you have time to talk by phone Friday. Thanks!


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 5:12 PM | | Comments (1)
        

April Fools' gags for nerds

April Fools' gags are breaking out across the Web among tech and news geeks. I had wanted to do one for this blog, but brighter minds than mine didn't think a news blog should be pumping out fake news -- even if it was to be about the newspaper.

(My gag was gonna be an announcement that the Sun would put up a paywall and start charging for online news come Friday. But on second thought, that's no laughing matter for those of us in the industry fearing extinction!)

Moving on...!

:: If you haven't heard, check out Google's home page this morning. The company decided to rename itself.

:: Johns Hopkins University is also getting into the renaming action -- they even went so far as to redo their signage!

If you spot any April Fool's gags on the Web today, drop a link in the comments below. I'm especially interested in gags close to home here in Maryland!

And here's some food for thought in case you find yourself laughing today at a gag: a fresh AP article on the science of laughter.


This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 7:59 AM | | Comments (8)
Categories: Geeks
        
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About Gus G. Sentementes
Gus G. Sentementes (@gussent on Twitter) has been writing for The Baltimore Sun since 2000. He's covered real estate, business, prisons, and suburban and Baltimore City crime and cops. He was one of the first reporters at The Sun to use multimedia tools and Web applications -- a video camera, an iPhone -- to cover breaking news. He hopes to cover Maryland geeks and the gadgets and Web sites they build, and learn -- and share -- something new every day.

Gus has a wife, a young daughter and two feuding cats. They live in Northeast Baltimore.
This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location: baltimoresun.com/balttech
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