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Archives: August 2005

What's Up (or Down) at Freecycle?

Posted by: Rob Hof on August 31, Categories: Web 2.0

Check out these mostly critical comments on the Freecycle Network. That's the widely praised Tucson-based group that helps people create local Web sites where they can give away and get...

Omaha Steaks Responds to Privacy Complaint

Posted by: Rob Hof on August 31, Categories: Privacy

Last week, I raked Omaha Steaks over the coals as a particularly annoying example of the continuing poor privacy practices of many Web sites. Well, I have to give the...

Best of the Web: The Polls Are Still Open

Posted by: Rob Hof on August 31, Categories: Best of the Web, Web 2.0

Our Best of the Web reader survey seems to have struck a chord: Some 37,000 votes have been cast so far. You can cast your own here. And I sure...

Creative vs Apple

Posted by: Cliff Edwards on August 30, Categories: Apple Computer

Just as Apple is gearing up for the launch of a revamped and reportedly flash-based iPod mini, rival Creative Technology is hoping to steal the spotlight from the digital music...

Google, Vonage, Skype: Peas From The Same Pod?

Posted by: Olga Kharif on August 30, Categories: Google

Rumor has it, Google will introduce a Web calling service soon. If that's true, VoIP providers Vonage and Skype have got to hassle with their respective IPO and sale.

SBC DSL--Promises Made, Promises Kept?

Posted by: Cliff Edwards on August 29, Categories: telecom

Whatever happened to keeping the promises both implied and real that you make to a customer? In nearly every industry you look nowadays, it seems customer service is getting more...

Can Garnick get Keane going?

Posted by: Steve Hamm on August 29, Categories:

This will be interesting to watch. Rich Garnick, who helped India's Wipro Technologies take off by running its North American operations, is now heading up North American business services for...

Rrring! Your Parking Has Expired

Posted by: Olga Kharif on August 29, Categories: wireless

This week, a major U.S. city will allow its residents to pay for parking with their cell phones. That just goes to show that the U.S. is quickly catching up to Japan and Korea in wireless technology.

A New Approach to Searching Photos

Posted by: Rob Hof on August 25, Categories: Digital Imaging, Flickr, Google, Search, Yahoo, photos

Munjal Shah, onetime cofounder of the auction services firm Andale, finally let slip on his new blog what he's been working on since leaving last year. As he writes: "I...

Rising PC parts prices: Who will pay?

Posted by: Peter Burrows on August 25, Categories:

In reporting our story on an expected fall in notebook PC profitability over the next couple of years, we got some interesting confirmations regarding tightening supplies and pricing pressure for...

Best of the Web, Part II: Check Out Our Survey

Posted by: Rob Hof on August 24, Categories: Best of the Web, Web 2.0

My little request for your picks for best sites and services on the Web--which has brought a wealth of great suggestions, in Comments below--has now morphed into a full-blown online...

That iTunes Phone is Coming, Again...

Posted by: Olga Kharif on August 23, Categories: wireless

We just got another confirmation that the iTunes phone will come out, and soon. Frankly, I am surprised that anyone has had any doubts that this phone will be released -- by September, as Motorola has previously said.

What Privacy?

Posted by: Rob Hof on August 23, Categories: Privacy

I recently ordered a gift through Omaha Steaks. I routinely check boxes that specify that I don't want to receive marketing emails or calls, but I don't recall even getting...

The Tao of Blogs, Part I

Posted by: Rob Hof on August 23, Categories: blogs

It's still a mystery to me why some of my blog posts get a lot of comments, while others seem to get lost in the ether. Lately, though, I have...

Share Your Life on the Web

Posted by: Rob Hof on August 19, Categories: Web 2.0

Want to tell the story of your life on the Web? I'd love to hear it. Why? In researching the best sites and services on the Web for an upcoming...

Those reinvention blues

Posted by: Steve Hamm on August 19, Categories: software

One of the most difficult things for a tech company to accomplish is a complete makeover. They spend years convincing customers, the press, and analysts that they're one thing--then...

Web Overload?

Posted by: Rob Hof on August 18, Categories: Web 2.0

As I've been looking into what seems like an endless stream of new Web sites and services, I admit to feeling overwhelmed. I've been living on MyYahoo for years, easy...

Best of the Web: Your Picks?

Posted by: Rob Hof on August 17, Categories: Web 2.0

We're starting work on an upcoming feature for the magazine, Best of the Web. As you might well imagine, it's a heckuva task to zero in on the best among...

I want my iTunes subscription service!

Posted by: Peter Burrows on August 16, Categories: Digital Music

So it turns out that Apple has been asking its record label partners about the inner workings of the music subscription model. Now, I'd bet Apple is just keeping its...

Hey Kids, There's a Revolution in Retailing

Posted by: Rob Hof on August 16, Categories:, Microsoft, Web 2.0, Yahoo, eBay, mash-ups

Robert Scoble throws out an intriguing new vision of online retail following his recent visit with the folks at eBay's developers program: "For instance, check out That site sells...

Parental Controls ... For Mobile Phones? You Bet

Posted by: Olga Kharif on August 16, Categories: wireless

Parents can already control Web sites and TV programs their children view. Next up: parental controls for mobile phones. Maps: Picture This

Posted by: Rob Hof on August 15, Categories:, Search, Web 2.0, mapping, mash-ups

Just as maps are becoming one of the Web's prime places for innovation to flower,'s is joining the fray. On Monday night--actually Monday afternoon, if you happened to...

Intel vs AMD

Posted by: Cliff Edwards on August 15, Categories: Chips

Could it be the folks over at Intel are getting a little nervous? Word on the street is the rival Advanced Micro Devices has been eating their lunch in the...

Why Did Providence Hire Michael Powell?

Posted by: Olga Kharif on August 14, Categories: wireless

I've been thinking about why Providence Equity Partners just recruited former Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Michael Powell. Perhaps Providence is readying a major move. My theory: It could try to acquire T-Mobile USA.

Is HP Losing its Inkjet Religion?

Posted by: Peter Burrows on August 12, Categories:

Buying Scitex shows that HP is losing its thermal inkjet religion to some degree.

Reality Dell

Posted by: Peter Burrows on August 12, Categories:

Maybe the cast [of MTV's Real World] should make room in the hot-tub for company chairman Michael Dell and CEO Kevin Rollins.

Discovering the Profits in Music Services

Posted by: Rob Hof on August 11, Categories: Digital Music

If there's anything I learned at the just-ended conference Music 2.0 in Foster City, it was that nobody's really making any money off digital music. Except maybe the labels, and...

The Same Old Song

Posted by: Rob Hof on August 10, Categories: Digital Music, digital media, file-sharing, iPod

After hearing StreamCast Networks, makers of the file-sharing software Morpheus, and a couple of record labels go at it for the Nth time at the Music 2.0 conference yesterday, I...

First Phase of E-Rate Program Clean-up Nearly Complete

Posted by: Olga Kharif on August 09, Categories: telecom

Sources tell BusinessWeek Online that one of the investigations into E-Rate fraud is nearly over. The U.S. House Committee on Energy and Commerce has completed its investigations and is about to start pointing fingers.

Web 2.0: What's in a Number?

Posted by: Rob Hof on August 08, Categories: Power of Us, Social Media, Web 2.0

Tim Bray, Sun Microsystems' director of Web technologies, hates the term Web 2.0, saying it's vacuous marketing hype. It's true that the term is pretty amorphous, and it has become...

Measuring Amazon's Not-So-Long Tail

Posted by: Rob Hof on August 07, Categories:, e-commerce, long tail

One factoid immediately struck me in Chris Anderson's widely read October 2004 Wired magazine article, "The Long Tail." He put the percentage of "long tail"--that is, the relatively obscure books...

Is Amazon Finally About to Offer a Digital Music Service?

Posted by: Rob Hof on August 04, Categories:, Digital Music, digital media

That's what the blog logically assumes from an interesting job listing posted to its own Digital Media Jobs Blog. (BUT SEE UPDATE BELOW.) The "forthcoming Digital Music Service" referenced...

Black Hats redux

Posted by: Steve Hamm on August 03, Categories: security

I've been able to track down some additional info concerning this Cisco/Black Hat dustup. My posting of last Friday elicited a bunch of comments. Almost all negative. My reference...

The Flickr Snowball Effect

Posted by: Rob Hof on August 02, Categories: Flickr, Power of Us, Web 2.0, Yahoo

My colleague Heather Green over at Blogspotting alerts us to some new features at Flickr, acquired a few months ago by Yahoo!. John Battelle at Searchblog has an interesting name...

The Monkey's Back

Posted by: Rob Hof on August 02, Categories: Firefox, Greasemonkey, Web 2.0, mash-ups

After a couple of weeks in the doghouse, a cleaned-up Greasemonkey has returned. Say what? That's the free add-on to the Firefox browser that lets you add any of...

Wikimania and Free Culture Movement

Posted by: Olga Kharif on August 02, Categories: Wikipedia

Wikimania, the first international conference on Wiki collaborative technology, is about to begin. And Wiki enthusiasts are starting up discussions on making knowledge free.

HP minus iPod: Why it makes sense

Posted by: Peter Burrows on August 01, Categories: Digital Music

For the past decade or so, HP has been too focused on deciding who to be like, rather than on finding its own way.

More on RSS Readers (But Still Less Than I Want)

Posted by: Rob Hof on August 01, Categories: RSS, Yahoo, blogs

All the helpful comments on my post on RSS feed reading frustrations (well, except for the person who suggested my complaints are "slop"--gee, thanks) made me realize exactly what I...


BusinessWeek writers Peter Burrows, Cliff Edwards, Olga Kharif, Aaron Ricadela, Douglas MacMillan, and Spencer Ante dig behind the headlines to analyze what’s really happening throughout the world of technology. One of the first mainstream media tech blogs, Tech Beat covers everything from tech bellwethers like Apple, Google, and Intel and emerging new leaders such as Facebook to new technologies, trends, and controversies.



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