August 2006
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Month August 2006

Bits up vs. down

I have been using the fon service for about two months now. One of the things that surprises me is the ratio of bits going up vs. down. This is where I stand:

August: 1108 hours – 6617.03 / 3305.65 Mb (dl/ul)
July: 681 hours – 5885.6 / 3907.02 Mb (dl/ul)

The up is considerably more symmetrical than I expected. In July the ratio is approx. 1:1.5 in august 1:2. And the media we push up is photos and email not audio, not video. In the never ending discussions i participate in about bandwidth and bandwidth usage I rarely hear people discuss how symmetrical one pipe/service is vs. another. IP based video is pretty much all coming down today — over the coming years if people start to post video the way we post photos today we are looking at symmetrical usage. Granted we usually dont care about when the bits go up as much as when they come down, but still I would never have expected these ratios. Note where we are located there hasn’t been any sharing of the router — so this is all our usage.

Grouper and sharing / organizing personal media

Just read Cringley’s piece about Grouper, its surprisingly thin. The purchase is about a research — Lynton made that clear in his statement – but with no brand its going to be hard to extend it beyond r&d, something Cringley seems to think is eary. Also wasnt grouper all about p2p and sharing of personal media? Thats what the client / media player is all about. The media have respun this as another video sharing site — but Felsner’s and Samuels vision started in a very different place. Will be interesting to see what Sony really bought and where they go with this. Sony really needs to drive and open up innovation on the software layer – from walkmans to phones to psp’s to connected cameras and playstations — offering users a means to share and manage personal media is a big opportunity that Sony have thus far failed to deliver on.

Why cant I tag movie clips as I film them on my camera? There should be a simple scroll wheel interface into a user defined set of keywords that I could select and tag as I capture media. The relative cost of capturing, or acquiring media continues to drop at an astounding pace — but this has shifted the cost of media from storage, processing etc. to organization and presentation.  Grouper anyone? Another example — have you tried openlcr? Openlcr is a web based interface to offer software services for cordless phones — ringtones, weather, upload contacts etc.  Its abismal — useless, and expensive to boot.   Why arent CE companies adapting to software based innovation? I think the problem is generally grounded in the history of the consumer electronics business. Most of the traditional businesses grew through innovating of specific hardware based functionality. CE devices were traditionally all about making thousands of minute pieces of hardware work in tandem. Yet CE as an industry is getting pressured from the edge by both the low cost manufacturing base, the realities of solid state and the advent of software based innovation, in essentially dumb devices.

Given that the Grouper purchase was made by Sony Pictures its likely they too bought the video sharing meme and wont capitalize on the rest of the opportunity, but there could be much more here than just another video storage / sharing site.

An Apple Show-and-Tell article

NYT article that is really just a summary of a couple of posts online — is this the value of old media, makes the about.com purchase seem a lot more forward looking!?

An Apple Show-and-Tell – New York Times On Monday, Apple’s Steve Jobs will take the stage at the company’s Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC). And he’ll have a lot to show and tell about. Skip to next paragraph Pogue's Posts The latest in technology from the Times's David Pogue, with a new look. Go to Pogue's Posts » Apple has already said that he’ll take the wraps off of Mac OS X 10.5 (“Leopard”), an operating-system upgrade whose significance seems greater because of its proximity to the release of Microsoft’s Windows Vista. Apart from that announcement, nobody knows what Apple will be showing at WWDC. But Apple’s innovation engine never sleeps, and it’s been at least a couple of months since anything new emerged, making me suspect that there will be lots of pent-up products on display next week. Further evidence comes in the form of two leaks. First, somebody snapped a photo of a banner at Apple’s booth, chock-a-block with photos of new Apple products. The most intriguing one is a 64-bit Power Mac. Second, somebody either leaked or “leaked” this list of new Mac OS X 10.5 features. I use the quotes in case the list is fake — this is the same rumors Web site that “leaked” Apple’s “plasma TV” last January—but the list feels genuine to me. Incomplete, but authentic for what’s there. More Articles in Technology »