Monday, June 30, 2008

Newspapers Are Dead

After many major newspaper publishers announced last week that they were suffering higher losses than expected and laying off up to a third of their staffers even those in the business are writing about their own death. Well, they can all look at the bright side at least we may be able to save some trees.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

New Web Addresses Now Allowed

A NEW era in the way websites are named has been ushered in, with web regulators voting overnight to allow the creation of thousands of new domain names.

The body that oversees the internet's structure approved a "land grab" for new web addresses that will allow people to apply for any top-level domain name - but it will cost them at least $US 100,000 to do so.

Scripts other than Latin - for example Chinese, Japanese, Arabic and Cyrillic - will also be allowed, opening up the internet to many millions in the Middle East and Asia.

Until now top-level domain names - the .com or .org at the end of a web address - have been restricted by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, the international not-for-profit body set up in 1998 to to oversee the structure of the internet and maintain its stability.

ICANN regulates the way web addresses are assigned to ensure that computers can communicate with each other.

The free-for-all agreed in Paris is seen as a great leap forward. ICANN is not being forced to act because there are not enough name options, but because it wants to open up the system to increase consumer choice.

The most popular top level domain name in the world is .com and there are about another 20 possibilities such as .org or .net. Every country has a country code domain name such as and (Britain). Now the possibilities are endless and the new names could range from place names to commodities.

Paul Twomey, the chief executive of ICANN, said: "It's a massive increase in the real estate of the internet. It will allow groups, communities and businesses to express their identities online."

Experts are divided on how many new domain names will come into existence. Skeptics argue that some of the more recent additions such as .name introduced in 2000 have failed to take off. But several categories of suffix, such as those relating to cities, are sure to prove popular.

It is easy to imagine addresses ending in .london or .paris. City authorities could apply for use of the domain name and then group services and companies under the .london umbrella.

Another top-level domain name likely to attract attention is .web.

It was not clear last night how many big name companies would want to change their well-established web addresses to take advantage of the new opportunities. Some were asking whether, for instance, Microsoft would want to stop residing at

But there is the potential for large sums to be won - and lost - amid fears that "cyber-squatters" would cash in on the liberalization to register hundreds of new web addresses created within each new suffix, and seek to sell them on to companies or organizations that want to claim them.

Big companies already spend millions of pounds buying up web addresses similar to their own to protect their brands. At the other end of the scale, those with money to burn might register their own personal domains.

Would-be applicants are advised that the process is different from registering a regular website. Top-level domains require significant equipment - including servers, routers, and databases - to run.

ICANN said it would begin taking applications for new domains next April, with the first expected to be in operation by the end of 2009.

The system is open to anyone, but applicants have to show they have a "business plan and technical capacity".

Disputed domains will be auctioned to the highest bidder, though in some cases intellectual property law may help a company to secure a name.

ICANN also reserves the right to reject a domain on "morality or public order" grounds, in which case the matter may go to an international arbitration committee.

One area of dispute will be domain names useful to the sex industry. Icann has in the past rejected the .xxx domain name on the grounds that it would be forced to become a content regulator. Whether .sex or .hot may be now allowed remains unclear.

So, what does all this mean? The bottom line is .com domains are only going to become more valuable as more players enter the domain game and realize only one fact is certain: .com is the beach front Internet Real Estate!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

YouTube - Best Quality

YouTube Tips

YouTube Upload Guidelines - For those who want the best possible results on YouTube.

General Purpose Settings - up to 6 minutes

A simple way to ensure that the quality is there is to export to MPEG-4 with:

  • H.264 video at 2000Kbits/sec (2Mbits/sec or 250KBytes/sec)
  • 320x240 video size (deinterlaced or simply use one field)
  • Mono audio with AAC at 64 Kbit/sec (or 128 Kbit/sec for stereo)
  • Recommended Sample Rate and
  • Best Encoding Quality.
  • In the Video Options Main Profile should be checked on and Best Quality (Multi-pass) is advised for best quality.

These settings will be fine up to 800 Mbits aka 100 MBytes. At the proposed settings, any file shorter than 6 minutes and 15 seconds will be within YouTube's 100MB per upload limit.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Casio Exilim

Last year Casio introduced two point and shoot cameras that have a built in capture mode optimized for YouTube. The cameras also come with software to easily upload your videos to YouTube. This is a great way for those without the time, software or knowledge to do it the old way. And now after the cameras have been out for a while the price has come down. Costco now has the 8 megapizel model for $189.

Monday, June 09, 2008

iPhone 3g

The most impressive improvement in the new iPhone3G is the higher speed data capabilities. According to Apple battery life is no longer a problem with this upgrade. Almost as impressive is built in GPS which allows for location based applications. This opens up exciting possibilities like finding nearby businesses and turn-by-turn navigation. Also finding nearby contacts. Really cool is location stamps for photos taken with the iPhone which you can instantly send to a Blog.

All this power and the iPhone3G is still a pretty face! The new iPhone is scheduled to go on sale July 11th.

Go to and be sure to watch the keynote address for lots more!

Update 6/13/08: Over the last several days there seems to be a building resentment towards Apple and AT&T regarding the $10 increase for the 3g data service. I, for one, say GET OVER IT! I'm pleased that AT&T is spending a lot of cash to upgrade their data service and I'm willing to do my part to help pay for it. I would pay even more for faster service. I would love to be able to get rid of my cable modem once and for all. So I say FULL SPEED ahead AT&T. Now, just allow my iPhone3g to operate as a WiFi Hotspot out of the box so I can share the 3g data connection with nearby computers and I'm happy (there are ways to hack this already)! 

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Friday, June 06, 2008

Chevrolet Volt is a GO!

For years I've been a fan of electric cars. In 2004 I purchased a Toyota Prius and I love it. But, now GM may be trumping Toyota with their Volt.

GM has now officially approved production of the Volt. You should be able to add one to your garage by the end of 2010. The Volt is expected to travel 40 miles on all-electric and then can keep going at about 50mpg on various fuels via its on-board generator. The best of both worlds. I say bring it on! (Note: Click on photo for enlargement)

Tuesday, June 03, 2008


These Presentations are produced in Google documents and can be added to your website. They are easily updated and can be shared with others and published as webpages just like Google Docs and Spreadsheets.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Google Custom Search

Click Here to checkout my Google powered custom search engine. I was able to define the websites that are searched and I can add or remove sites as I wish. This way you can control the data that is searched resulting in better results for users.

Google Friend Connect