October 13, 2009
Posted: 09:41 AM ET
Popular ad-blocking Firefox add-ons, such as AdBlock and Skipscreen, are upsetting some Web site owners who generate revenue from advertisements.
In a recent article, TechDirt clashes with several blog owners who claim users of ad blockers are stealing.
Michael Lankton of Connected Internet argues:
File host MediaFire has responded to the the add-on SkipScreen, which allows users to skip its ads, by firing off a legal takedown notice to Mozilla.
So what do you think? Would you use an application that blocked ads from appearing, even if those ads supported the site you were visiting?
October 12, 2009
Posted: 08:30 AM ET
Have you ever been in this situation: You’re hundreds of miles from home, facing a new job in a HUGE city with no idea how to find anything, meet people or navigate the twisting highways?
When I moved to Atlanta, this was me. I was constantly lost. I couldn’t find a grocery store. And, more importantly, I didn’t know anyone.
I found myself online all the time, desperately e-mailing friends back home. So I started looking online for local things to do. I started my search at Meetup.com.
It was easy to sign-up, and I joined a group with the most promising name: “Girls Night Out.”
This quest helped inspire me to produce a video series at CNN.com/Live called “My Online Life.” Our latest video, where we discuss and rank sites like Meetup, is at the bottom of this post.
Here’s how Meetup works: Each “Meetup Group” leader organizes activities in public places and the members are notified through E-mails. I was hoping to find a new restaurant or go dancing and through that, find some local friends.
Unfortunately, “Girls Night Out” was staying in. The leader didn’t plan anything, and my hope dwindled. Frustrated and tired of nights watching re-runs, I posted on the message board about why nothing was planned, and asked if anyone would like to get together for a drink.
Five girls responded, and so we set up a dinner. We met, chatted, shared a pitcher of mojitos, and got to be friends. Many more mojito nights later, I was on my way towards liking Atlanta.
Since then, I’ve joined 13 “meetup” groups. I can take my dog out for a play date, talk over travel, practice yoga, or play Jenga. Groups come and go and some are more active than others, but almost daily there’s a new gathering invite in my inbox.
Want to get to know your city? Here are the two sites we reviewed:
It’s easy to use, but sometimes starts up slowly
Yelp has great reviews and event lists, but less opportunity for person-to person interaction
Embedded video from CNN Video
October 7, 2009
Posted: 09:44 AM ET
In a press release Tuesday AT&T announced it will now allow iPhone VoIP apps, like Skype, to run on the cellular network.
AT&T previously restricted all VoIP apps, which transmit voice calls over a data network, for use only when an iPhone was on a Wi-Fi network. With these restrictions dropped, iPhone customers can now use AT&T's 3G data network to make calls without using their wireless minutes.
AT&T claims this change was due to customer demand:
Recent FCC scrutiny over Apple's rejection of the Google Voice app, as well as a congressional push for net neutrality are likely also responsible for AT&T's change of heart.
New VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) apps that take advantage of 3G capabilities should be available soon. However, AT&T's 3G network where I live in Atlanta is about as reliable as the Detroit Lions, so I doubt I will be dropping my traditional voice service any time soon.
October 5, 2009
Posted: 03:19 PM ET
In his continued effort to raise money for cancer research, cancer patient Drew Olanoff, or @drew on Twitter, has announced he will auction off his Twitter name to the highest bidder.
He plans to give the proceeds to the LIVESTRONG organization.
So far, the highest bidder is Drew Carey, the host of the "Price is Right," who has bid $25,000 on the name but has indicated that he will go as high as $100,000, according to The Telegraph, out of the UK.
The auction ends on November 9, Olanoff's birthday.
From Olanoff's blog:
Drew Carey currently goes by @DrewFromTV on Twitter.
Drew Olanoff created an Internet meme called "Blame Drew's Cancer" when he set up a Twitter hash tag where people blame Drew's cancer for everything that's going wrong in their lives. More on that from the Blame Drew's Cancer Web site:
Are you a gadgethead? Do you spend hours a day online? Or are you just curious about how technology impacts your life? In this digital age, it's increasingly important to be fluent, or at least familiar, with the big tech trends. From gadgets to Google, smartphones to social media, this blog will help keep you informed.