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links for 2009-04-27

April 27, 2009
  • Commentary on Sunday's NY Times article about how advertising, infrastructure and popular Web sites pose a conundrum for Internet use in developing countries: widespread use with little profit. Some sites (Veoh, for example) have blocked their sites from use in certain countries, simply because the profit isn't there. Others (like Facebook) are considering other options, including lowering the quality of photos and videos for easier loading.
  • "I find it unbelievable that a common phrase (that was used way before it was the title of any book) can be trademarked. We’re not talking about the names of products … we’re talking about the English language. You know, the words many of us use for such things as … talking, and writing, and general communication? Perhaps I’m a little behind the times, but is it really possible to claim whole chunks of the language, and force people to get permission to use the language, just in everyday speech?"
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3 Comments leave one →
  1. Easy permalink
    April 27, 2009 10:11 pm

    Last.fm recently announced that users outside of the US, UK and Germany will have to pay a monthly fee for Last.fm radio. The rest of the site will remain free, but the high cost of providing the radio service (they pay royalties to artists) isn’t offset by advertising revenues anywhere but those three nations.

    I think that’ll become more common with time. Right up until paid proxy servers — which already exist to help people get around things like the BBC and Hulu DRM issues — make the whole issue moot, anyway.

  2. Maidenvoyage (Vanessa) permalink
    April 28, 2009 6:26 am

    I don’t know if it’s your thing, but I was alerted to this article in the New Yorker: http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2009/04/27/090427fa_fact_talbot?currentPage=1. It’s about “neuroenhancers” or “cognitive enhancers” such as Provigil, Adderol, and modafinil that have various stimulant and focusing effects. Originally prescribed for ADHD, they’re beginning to be used for enhancement of cognitive performance. They don’t make you smarter, but they help you better harness what you do have. They’re rising in popularity among college students and even some workforces are seeing some adults begin taking them.

  3. April 28, 2009 10:22 am

    I read the Zen Habits post this morning – that’s insane.

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