DigitalOutbox Episode 44
In this episode the team discuss Politics and the Regime.
1:43 – Bye Bye Broadband tax
– a 50p-a-month broadband tax, which would have been applied to all households with a landline telephone, has been shelved.
– The Conservatives said they also forced the government to backtrack on the plans to levy a charge on landline phone bills – due to come into force in October – to pay for the universal roll-out of broadband.
– They declared the reversal of the two tax rises – as well as another on the taxation of holiday rental homes – as a “major victory for businesses and consumers across Britain”.
– Labour has said all the tax measures will be re-introduced should Labour be re-elected.
3:07 – Digital Bill passed in Wash Up Session
– The government forced through the controversial digital economy bill with the aid of the Conservative party last night, attaining a crucial third reading – which means it will get royal assent and become law – after just two hours of debate in the Commons.
– Clause 43 dropped a proposal on orphan works which had been opposed by photographers.
– Clause 43 was to allow orphan works
– Clause 43 says that if someone finds your photograph, wants to use it and decides that they can’t trace you, they can do whatever they like with it after paying an arbitrary fee to a UK Government-appointed “licensing body”. You’ll never know unless you happen to find it being used in this way, in which case you should be able to claim some money.
– lause 43 also introduces “Extended Collective Licensing”. This means that if someone finds your photograph and can trace you, they still don’t have to contact you for permission to use it. They can go to a UK Government-appointed “collecting society” and ask them instead. They’ll pay an arbitrary fee and be able to do whatever they like with the photograph. Your photograph. Again, without asking you first or paying what you would have charged.
– Full list of all measures – http://paidcontent.co.uk/article/419-digital-economy-bill-quick-guide-to-all-45-measures/
– Tom Watson, the former Cabinet Office minister who resigned in mid-2009, voted against the government for the first time in the final vote to take the bill to a third reading. However the vote was overwhelmingly in the government’s favour, which it won by 189 votes to 47. 20 MP’s debated the bill.
– Earlier the government removed its proposed clause 18, which could have given it sweeping powers to block sites, but replaced it with an amendment to clause 8 of the bill. The new clause allows the secretary of state for business to order the blocking of “a location on the internet which the court is satisfied has been, is being or is likely to be used for or in connection with an activity that infringes copyright”.
– Example was given that Wikileaks could be blocked as it hosts copyrighted material
– Dropbox, Windows Live, Xmarks, Google, MobileMe – all could be construed as being used to infringe copyright. Youtube, Vimeo, Flickr – where could this stop? Or start.
– The third reading on Wednesday followed the second reading on Tuesday – around 40 MP’s debated it
– 1 Bill, 20,000 letters, 40 MP’s turn up to debate – http://debillitated.heroku.com/
– The Digital Economy Bill passed: The internet watched live as a handful of MPs ignored democracy in their attempts to control that they don’t understand. – http://www.skeptobot.com/2010/04/digital-economy-bill-passed-internet.html
– The third reading has been just as bad. Almost Empty. 2 hours given to debate amendments to 50 clauses. The first clause took 1hr. The last 49 were glossed over in the last hour. Ten minutes before the vote labour MPs put down their drinks, pulled themselves out of the bar and stumbled in to vote for the Bill. Having listened to nothing. Disgusting.
– 6-9 months scrutiny first, then potentially first letters could go out
– However the law that has been passed requires a years gap between letter and disconnection – so end of 2011 before we see any impact on home users – much sooner for websites to be disconnected though
– internet service providers will be obliged to send letters to any of their subscribers linked to alleged infringements.
– Copyright holders will be able to apply for a court order to gain access to the names and addresses of serious infringers and take action against them while ISPs would be able to suspend accounts of offenders.
– Can’t believe how quickly such important laws got voted through – one last trip to the lords and then it’s in place
– Letters to the house, websites taken down. Can’t believe this is the UK and it was brought in by a Labour government
– Stephen Timms who led the digital economy bill thought that IP address meant Intellectual property
– Copyright is hard – http://ceedee.co.uk/copyright-is-hard
– Big business owns the government – this proves it
– Talk Talk not happy – http://www.talktalkblog.co.uk/2010/04/08/digital-economy-bill-its-a-wash-up/
– O2 – don’t know what they are – http://blog.o2.co.uk/home/2010/04/o2-comments-on-the-digital-economy-act.html
– Annoyed – visit Open Rights Group – http://www.openrightsgroup.org/ although I’m not overly convinced by this group
– Annoyed – what did your MP vote – http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm/cmtoday/cmdebate/32.htm#hddr_2
– Annoyed – vote for someone that will at least respond to your letters
34:48 – Apple vs Adobe
– Dev changes – cross compilers no longer allowed i.e. Flash-to-iPhone compiler from Adobe due next week
– Could affect Wired apps? Built using Adobe Air.
– Be in no doubt – numerous times during this keynote, Steve Jobs showed Adobe the middle finger.
– If you were in any doubt, Adobes filings to Securities and Exchange Commission on Friday:
– it flatly says that “to the extent new releases of operating systems or other third-party products, platforms or devices, such as the Apple iPhone or iPad, make it more difficult for our products to perform, and our customers are persuaded to use alternative technologies, our business could be harmed
– Friday nights – Flash Blog – Platform Evangelist speaks
– I am positive that there are a large number of Apple employees that strongly disagree with this latest move. Any real developer would not in good conscience be able to support this. The trouble is that we will never hear their discontent because Apple employees are forbidden from blogging, posting to social networks, or other things that we at companies with an open culture take for granted.
– Many of Adobe’s supporters have mentioned that we should discontinue the Creative Suite products on OS X as a form of retaliation. Again, this is something that Adobe would never consider in a million years. We are not looking to abuse our loyal users and make them pawns for the sake of trying to hurt another company. What is clear is that Apple most definitely would do that sort of thing as is evidenced by their recent behavior.
– Now let me put aside my role as an official representative of Adobe for a moment as I would look to make it clear what is going through my mind at the moment. Go screw yourself Apple. Comments disabled as I’m not interested in hearing from the Cupertino Comment SPAM bots.
– Adobe CTO speaks – http://blogs.adobe.com/conversations/2010/04/cs5_countdown_is_on.html
– CS5 is bigger than this one block from Apple
– There’s plenty of healthy competition that we can work with
– Developer talks to Steve – http://mashable.com/2010/04/10/steve-jobs-adobe
– We’ve been there before, and intermediate layers between the platform and the developer ultimately produces sub-standard apps and hinders the progress of the platform.
– Calm, reasoned response – http://www.mobilecrunch.com/2010/04/11/gruber-a-voice-of-calm-in-a-mobile-world-gone-out-of-control/
– Good article summing up points form either side
– Did Adobe screw themselves – http://innerdaemon.wordpress.com/2010/04/10/sorry-adobe-you-screwed-yourself/
– 10 years ago dropped Apple and didn’t develop for OS X despite Apple reaching out several times to Adobe for support
46:12 – CS5 Launched
– Player 10.1
– Mmm, nothing
– Our ActionScript toting contact says player 10.1 offers some snazzy features – including peer-2-peer functionality that’s quite exciting.
– Unprecedented access to 98% of desktop computers an lots of other connected devices
– Photoshop CS5
– 64 bit on Mac and PC
– HDR Pro
– Saving presents for single and multiple exposures
– Noise tools looking strong – reduction in demo looked really good
– Automatic Lens correction – looked very nice
– Online location for sharing lens profiles
– Content aware fill!
– Puppet Warp – drop points on body and make changes
– CS5 – empowers the digital artist
– Pricing – http://www.macworld.co.uk/procreative/news/index.cfm?newsid=3219980&pagtype=allchandate
– The new version has lots of cool new toys and tools for photographers, which I’ll get into, but for me by far the most significant achievement in this new version is that it has for the first time made painting available to the photographer.
-All very good and I’m sure impressive (voodoo even with the content aware fill) but they GONE AND DONE IT AGAIN – f*****s
– Ignoring VAT: US FULL = £1235 – UK £1509
US UPGRADE (CS3 Design Prem) – £519.52 – UK £714
1:02:11 – Twitter buys Tweetie
– Twitter buys Tweetie
– Renamed Twitter for iPhone and made free (instead of £1.59)
– Loren Brichter will become a key member of Twitters mobile team that is already having huge impact with device makers and service providers around the world.
– Loren’s work won the 2009 Apple Design Award and we will eventually launch Twitter for iPad with his help.
– No word on the Mac version of Tweetie
– One week before Chirp – is this Twitter wanting to take better control of user experience?
– I’d be concerned if I had a paid for Twitter app right now as part of my core business – http://www.loiclemeur.com/english/2010/04/of-course-were-hole-fillers-and-why-no-one-should-depend-on-only-one-platform.html
1:05:47 – Palm up for Sale
– Palm Inc., creator of the Pre smartphone, is seeking bids for the company as early as this week, according to three people familiar with the situation.
– HTC, Lenovo, Dell rumoured
– HTC favourite
– Still a good brand
1:06:59 – iPad Sales
– Sat only
– Over 300,000 iPads, by Thursday, 450,000
– iPad owners downloaded over 1,000,000 apps, by Thursday 3.5 million apps
– iPad owners downloaded over 250,000 books from iBooks, by Thursday 600,000 books
– 30,000 devices more than iPhones were purchased when they first went on sale
1:08:12 – Google Docs Updated
– Adds Google Drawings
– more of an online whiteboard. The app is designed to help people visualize ideas through flow charts, diagrams, and stencils.
– There is a chat window where participants can chime in. Images can be imported and moved around.
– no freehand drawing option.
– Google Drawings requires an HTML5 browser
– The real news, though, is that Google Docs and Spreadsheets is getting more realtime. There has always been a noticeable delay when new edits get saved and synced up, especially when more than one person is working on the same document. Google is addressing this delay with an entirely new architecture built from the ground up.
– Realtime collaboration – see what others are typing
– Rulers, tab stops, better image handling
– Spreadsheets – faster, move columns, auto fill
1:10:57 – Site Speed affects search ranking
– Matt Cutts talked about this last year
– A slow site could affect your Google rank
– There are 200 other ranking factors though – relevance still more important
– While site speed is a new signal, it doesn’t carry as much weight as the relevance of a page.
– Currently, fewer than 1% of search queries are affected by the site speed signal in our implementation and the signal for site speed only applies for visitors searching in English on Google.com at this point
– Need to get our site updated
1:15:33 – MI5 Makes Non IT Literate Staff Redundant
– MI5 is ditching staff who lack computer skills in a programme of compulsory and voluntary redundancies.
– or if you read the Daily Mail…
– MI5 is making dozens of its older staff redundant as they do not have the computer skills to use social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter.
– “Our enemies use every available method to attack including using technology.
– “We have to be aware of the imminent threats of cyber attacks and the old generation of MI5 have to be completely comfortable using computers and the latest technology.”
– Mr Mercer added: “There is no room now for the ‘old school tie’ or recruitment from just certain Oxbridge colleges. “We need people from all walks of life who can speak a range of languages and possess certain technical skill
– Good photo tool for iOS
– Lots of filters and borders – you too can make your shiny new iPhone take photo’s from the 70’s
Online password generator
– Online password generator. It’s in here because it’s a tool I constantly come back to.
– Creates secure passwords. Plenty of options for type of letter / punctuation / avoid similar letters/cars