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What To Do When a Megacorp Wants To Buy You?

thefickler Take the money and don't look back (412 comments)

It really depends on the amount of money being offered. I was once offered $500,000 for a business that was barely turning over that much. My business partner was reluctant, and the deal fell apart. With the benefit of hindsight, I should have jumped at the offer. Offers of money don't come easily. If the money is big enough to pay a big chunk of a home, jump at it, and then start planning your next venture.

more than 5 years ago



Where to for fast broadband? Latvia, Romania!

thefickler thefickler writes  |  more than 3 years ago

thefickler (1030556) writes "We've all heard how fast broadbrand is in South Korea, and that's been confirmed by a recently released global legue table of broadband speeds, confirming South Korea remains the country with the fastest average speed of 12 Mbps, followed by Hong Kong and Japan. But get this, the next two spots go to Romania and Latvia, which have enjoyed major speed increses in the past year.
The US is in 16th place with an average speed of 4.7 Mbps. While there’s an argument that this is a poor position for such a major country (and cited as a reason for federal investment in expanding and improving provision), it’s likely also the result of the US having so many rural and remote areas compared to the likes of South Korea. That’s partly borne out by the US having a dozen of the 100 global cities with the fastest average speed, the American contingent being headed up by California’s Monterey Park with an average 7.2Mbps."

Pacific Vortex to become habitable island?

thefickler thefickler writes  |  about 4 years ago

thefickler (1030556) writes "The Pacific Ocean trash dump is twice the size of Texas, or the size of Spain combined with France. The Pacific Vortex as it is sometimes called, is made up of four million tons of Plastic. Now there's a proposal to turn this dump into "Recycled Island". The Netherlands Architecture Fund has provided the grant money for the project, and the WHIM architecture firm is conducting the research and design of Recycled Island. One of the three major aims of the project is to clean up the floating trash by recycling it on site. Two, the project would create new land for sustainable habitation complete with its own food sources and energy sources. Lastly, Recycled Island is to be a sea worthy island. While at the moment the project is still more or less a pipe dream, it's great that someone is trying to work out what to do with one of humanity's most bizarre environmental slip ups."

Robots to beat World Cup winners by 2050

thefickler thefickler writes  |  more than 4 years ago

thefickler (1030556) writes "Robots, one minute they're trying to obliterate the human race; the next minute they're trying to beat us at soccer. The 2010 Robocup robotic soccer tournament is currently being held in Singapore, having attracted 500 teams. What makes Robocup interesting (if you're not into soccer) is that the stated aim is that: "by mid 21st-century (2050), a team of fully autonomous humanoid robot soccer players shall win the soccer game, complying with the official rules of the FIFA, against the winner of the most recent World Cup." The videos are hilarious, and to tell the truth, I'd much prefer that robots burn up their superioity streak by beating us at soccer than by wiping us off the face of the planet. But that's just me."

MS announces online office apps

thefickler thefickler writes  |  more than 4 years ago

thefickler (1030556) writes "The great online office suite war is now officially on, with Microsoft announcing online versions of its Office applications. Users just simply need to head over to and log in with their Live ID to access online versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote. Users can opt to upload their current Office documents via a drag-and-drop interface powered by Microsoft's Silverlight, or they can create new documents right in the browser. Watch out Google! (or not)"

Internet to run out of IP addresses in 18 months

thefickler thefickler writes  |  more than 4 years ago

thefickler (1030556) writes "According to Daniel Karrenberg the chief scientist at RIPE NCC, the organization that issues IP addresses in Europe, the web will run out of IP addressees in 18 months — making harder to add new devices to the Internet. The problem appears to be that companies are being slow to adopt the latest Internet Protocol Addressing Scheme (version 6 (IPv6), which can provide trillions of IP addresses, rather than a measly few billion(iPv4) One wag has implored the IT world to take action on this issue: "Come on, get off the fence and let's get on the Ipv6 bandwagon so that my refrigerator can have its own address!" Glad someone out there really understands just how serious this issue is."

Cost-reduced OLED coming to your TV

thefickler thefickler writes  |  more than 4 years ago

thefickler (1030556) writes "Organic light emitting diode (OLED) screens are energy efficient and vibrant, but until now, have mainly been used in cell phones, since the cost to manufacture large OLED screens has been prohibitive. That's changed now that Dupont has developed a new manufacturing process that avoids the need for expensive evaporative materials. Apparntly DuPonts commercial ready OLED manufacturing process will create TVs that have a 15 year lifespan. These new active matrix OLED displays will have resolutions from 55ppi to 128 ppi."

Symantec: it's dangerous to rely on free antivirus

thefickler thefickler writes  |  about 5 years ago

thefickler (1030556) writes "Clearly the rise of free antivirus is starting to worry Symantec, with a top Symantec executive warning consumers not to rely on free antivirus software (including Microsoft's Microsoft Security Essentials). "If you are only relying on free antivirus to offer you protection in this modern age, you are not getting the protection you need to be able to stay clean and have a reasonable chance of avoiding identity theft," said David Hall, Symantec's Product Manager Asia-Pacific Consumer Products and Solutions."

Laser treated metal directs water uphill

thefickler thefickler writes  |  more than 5 years ago

thefickler (1030556) writes "Dr Chunlei Guo at the University of Rochester in New York has developed a method of treating metals so they can redirect water, even to the point where the water will flow up rather than down. The method involves treating the metal with a femtosecond laser. The laser unleashes as much power as the entire electric grid of North America does, all focused onto a spot the size of a needlepoint. This changes the nanostructure of the metal. This technique can also be used to permanently change the color of metals, for example silver to blue. And in case you're wondering, the research is funded by the US Air Force Office of Scientific Research and the National Science Foundation."

Yahoo set to overwhelm with new widgets

thefickler thefickler writes  |  more than 5 years ago

thefickler (1030556) writes "Yahoo is set to release a raft of new widgets to Yahoo Mail, My Yahoo, Yahoo Connected TV and Zimbra in coming months. For example, Yahoo mail will get widgets to Send payments with Pay Pal, Send large files with Zumo Drive, Add images to Photobucket, and Edit photos with Picnik. However, as one commentator said: 'While it is obvious that Yahoo is trying to gain back some of its market share it has lost over the past several years, I'm not positive that cluttering up their pages with more information is the way to do it.'"

New HDMI 1.4 spec set to confuse

thefickler thefickler writes  |  more than 5 years ago

thefickler writes "HDMI Licensing LLC, the company that determines the specifications of the HDMI standard, is set to release the HDMI 1.4 spec on 30 June. Unfortunately it could very well be the most confusing thing to ever happen to setting up a home theater. When the new cables are released, you're going to need to read the packaging very carefully because effectively there are now going to be five different versions of HDMI to choose from — HDMI Ethernet Channel, Audio Return Channel, 3D Over HDMI, 4K x2K Resolution Support and a new Automotive HDMI. At least we can't complain about consumer choice."

Could Google predict illness trends?

thefickler thefickler writes  |  more than 5 years ago

thefickler (1030556) writes "With the Swine Flu pandemic scare not long past, Google is embarking on a study to test a theory that internet searches can predict illness trends. Users who search for keywords relating to illness and medicines may, in randomly selected cases, be asked whether their search was prompted by a medical condition (either their own or someone they know.) By doing this, Google should be able to extrapolated how many people actually affected by an illness are searching for information about that particular illness at any one time, allowing Google to track significant patterns."

Journalist's career wiped by The New York Times

thefickler thefickler writes  |  more than 5 years ago

thefickler (1030556) writes "Reading about Peter Wayner and his problems with book piracy, reminded me of another writer Thomas Crampton, who has the opposite problem — a lot of his work has been wiped from the Internet. Thomas Crampton has worked for the New York Times (NYT) and the International Herald Tribune (IHT) for about a decade, but when the websites of both newspapers were merged two months, a lot of Crampton's work disappeared into the ether — much to the Crampton's horror. Links to the old stories are simply hitting generic pages. Crampton wrote a letter to Arthur Sulzberger, the publisher of the New York Times, pleading for his work to be put back online. But here's the hilarious part, according to one analysis, the NYT is throwing away money — at least $100,000 every month the links are broken."

Google advertising Chrome on TV

thefickler thefickler writes  |  more than 5 years ago

thefickler (1030556) writes "Google has announced plans to advertise Google Chrome on the television, using one of the Chrome Shorts produced by the Google Japan team a couple of months ago. The advert will start to show on "various television networks starting this weekend." Some pundits are wondering why Google has decided to start using television when in past it has relied heavily on word-of-mouth promotion. Obviously Chrome is important to the overall startegy, and someone at Google doesn't mind spending some money to push it along."

Lenovo on the future of the netbook

thefickler thefickler writes  |  more than 5 years ago

thefickler (1030556) writes "Lenovo's Worldwide Competitive Analyst, Matt Kohut, recently spoke about his vision of the future of netbooks, which involves Windows 7, bigger screens, built-in 3G, touch integration, and lower prices. Linux fans will be disappointed to hear that Kohut thinks Windows 7 will dominate future generations of netbooks because it offers a better, more familiar solution, with the benefits of touch. We'll see..."

Should online reading be called screenng?

thefickler thefickler writes  |  more than 5 years ago

thefickler writes "Do we need a new word to describe the act of reading digital content? One man passionately believes so. Danny Bloom, an American blogger based in Taiwan is waging a one-man battle to encourage the use of the word "screening". Bloom's argument is that reading online content is profoundly different to reading paper-based content, and therefore needs a new word to describe it. Personally, I think Bloom just wants to "be the guy who came up with the word screening", but hey don't we all want our 15 minutes of fame?"

Lenovo analyst: Linux on netbooks is doomed

thefickler thefickler writes  |  more than 5 years ago

thefickler writes "Lenovo's Worldwide Competitive Analyst, Scott Kohut, has predicted that Linux will only ever be a niche player as an operating system for netbooks. Kohut cited a number of factors that have led to the demise of Linux as a netbook operating system, but his main criticism is that Linux is still too hard to use compared to Windows. He suggests that some members of the Linux community even "like the fact that [Linux] is a little difficult and that it isn't accessible to the average user"."

Kutcher & CNN dual for 1 million Twitter follo

thefickler thefickler writes  |  more than 5 years ago

thefickler (1030556) writes "While the rest of the world worries about the GFC, piracy off the Somali coast, and other assorted problems, Hollywood actor Ashton Kutcher is locked in a furious battle with CNN to get to one million Twitter followers. At the time of writing, Kutcher had 945,389 followers, while CNN had 961,878. However, Kutcher is currently the favorite, as it's believed he's attracting followers at a quicker rate and should actually beat CNN quite comfortably. The only other potential candidate is Britney Spears on 928, 374. I know who I'm rooting for."

Solar power to be cheapest energy by 2010

thefickler thefickler writes  |  more than 5 years ago

thefickler writes "The CEO and founder of California-based Akeena Solar, Barry Cinnamon, has gone out on a limb to predict that by 2010, photovoltaic(PV) solar power would be the cheapest way to generate energy, at least in California. Cinnamon said: "The solar PV market in California will explode once people discover that they can generate their own rooftop power for less than it costs from their utility." As you would expect, the prediction has attracted its fair share of sceptics. Best summarised by one commentor, who simply said: "That's bull.""
Link to Original Source

Microsoft PowerPoint hit by security flaw

thefickler thefickler writes  |  more than 5 years ago

thefickler writes "Microsoft is warning users to take particular care when opening suspicious PowerPoint documents. A vulnerability in the 2000, 2002 and 2003 editions of PowerPoint for Windows plus Office 2004 for Macs could allow a hacker to gain remote control of a computer. Microsoft has confirmed it's aware of "limited and targeted attacks" that attempt to exploit the vulnerability. The firm is still deciding how to plug the security gap: it could issue a patch in the next scheduled Windows Update on April 14, or issue an out-of-cycle update (an emergency patch) beforehand."



Out-of-control teens abuse toddler and then post a video

thefickler thefickler writes  |  about 7 years ago I was pretty shocked by this post which shows a video of a child huddling on the floor of a car while being slapped and prodded by her teenage guardians. The teenagers make jokes about the child being on drugs (I hope they were joking).

Scary stuff if you're a parent.

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