Archive for November, 2010
WikiLeaks, a website notorious of leaking confidential and classified U.S. military and diplomatic documents, has released new batch of US diplomatic cables on Sunday. It was told that WikiLeaks website was hit with a denial-of-service (dos) attack as it prepared to publicize the thousands of diplomatic cables.
On Sunday, Nov. 28, the website has released some of the more than 250,000 cables, which were given to the New York Times and other media groups for release. The documents exposed the inner workings of U.S. diplomacy, including candid and embarrassing assessments of various world leaders.
The cables date as old as 1966 and as new as the end of February 2010. They represent the confidential communications between 274 embassies throughout the world and the State Department in Washington DC. Out of the 250K cables, 15,652 are classified Secret. Attached graph is the part of the graph showing the total number of different types of cables related to their embassies.
Google Documents had its mobile version for the last three years but, it was not truly mobile. The mobile version used to be read-only.
In a latest announcement from Google, it is rolling out the updated version of Google Docs with edit support. The update will be rolled out in the next few days for English-language users around the world. The updated Docs is compatible with Android-based handsets running Froyo version 2.2 and iPhone, iPad or iPod touch running Apple iOS V3 or higher.
Although writing or massive editing in a phone might not be that convenient, minor correction or reviews are best done on the go. Microsoft in is latest release, has also included its Office package in Windows Phone 7. Apple is also selling its iPad versions of text editor, spreadsheet, and presentation software.
A MacLean’s article on colleges and universities has spurred the racial debate in Canadian Universities. The article talks about a number white students avoiding big-name schools to avoid "too Asian" crowd and be at home with the fellow whites. The not-too-Asian colleges choices are less competitive and easy to get admitted to and have more parties and fun activities.
Responding to the article, US Blogger angryasianman says he doesn’t like:
… the part that makes Asian students sound like joyless, socially-isolated, singularly-focused drones under the command of overbearing immigrant parents.
It seem, the article was very popular and the editors apparently have edited the original article. The archive of the original article however is still available here.
I think the author of the article should have mulled upon a few facts before writing it:
- Nobody else is more Canadian than aboriginal/native descents. If white people are "white Canadians" then the Asian should also be ‘Asian Canadians’.
- Asians and all other minorities should integrate into the Caucasian population and vice versa. There is no excuse of not doing so. Discrimination between recently migrated European and recently migrated Chinese would only be based on skin color.
- Some students being smart doesn’t make competition unfair.
On contrast, it is also true that:
- Memorizing a book and getting good grades doesn’t necessarily mean they are smart.
- Some people, by their inherited nature, isolate themselves and don’t mingle easily with others. Usually the first generation and second generation migrants tend to have such behavioral problem.
Latest rumor in the tech world is that email with @facebook.com is going to be the next big thing in email communication. The email system coupled with Facebook’s popular photo and events programs can prove to be a serious rival to Google’s Gmail.
Rumor of a secret project, officially known as Project Titan, has been going around since February and it would not be a surprise on the release of the service also known as ‘Gmail killer’.
In another news, Facebook has acquired the domain fb.com. The domain registered to American Farm Bureau was sold to an undisclosed buyer in September. The whois query of fb.com shows that the domain was updated on 12-Nov-2010 and the name servers are located at facebook.com. It is likely that Facebook might use the domain for email or shortening urls in Facebook postings.
In an attempt to retain it’s work force and lure more talents, Google Inc has announced 10% raise to its 23,000 employees. Google has faced increasing number of it’s talents leaving for better paid jobs in startup companies. Reversing the trend of being considered Silicon Valley’s hottest job destination, Google has seen Facebook and other Internet firms poaching its staff.
Start-ups companies and private companies like Facebook can recruit much easily as they are yet go public. They can also lure workers with pre-IPO stock. It is found that such companies offer an average annual salaries of $120,000 for engineers.
Previously it was Google in the poaching end – grabbing workers from Yahoo and Microsoft. Now, with its pace of growth slowing, growing firms are snatching the Google workforce. It is not that Google has stopped hiring. Google added some 3,600 people last year alone. Google’s latest pay raise indicates that the management believes in retaining employees than hiring new employees.
It’s official, Google thinks, Facebook is a virtual black hole!
A black hole, is a star or planet that has shrunken such that it has an infinite mass and virtually nothing, even light, escapes its gravitational field. Google thinks the same holds true for Facebook because it can’t crawl the personal data held in the social network.
The fact that more an more people are embracing Facebook for their social presence (and, ignore Google’s Buzz!) is the biggest source of headache of the search giant these days. Facebook is challenging the biggest obsession of Google – hoarding every data in the world. When more than 500 million users lock their information in Facebook, Google is sure to get mad! After all, Google is the undisputed emperor of the internet, winning every battle with its ‘data might’.
Highlighting an intensifying rivalry with Facebook, Google Inc has started blocking Facebook from grabbing information about Google users’ social and professional contacts in Gmail.
Earlier, Google CEO Eric Schmidt had expressed Google’s interest in getting access to Facebook users’ contact lists.
Cooks Source Magazine, a free, advertising-supported publication has found a new ‘recipe’ of increasing ‘Facebook friends’ from 110 to thousands overnight! Jut to give the clue on how it is increasing – there were 4,400 likes on its Facebook page at the time I stared writing this post and at the time I finished it, there were 4,533 likes. That was 133 more likes in 20 minutes!
But, the ‘friends’ are there only to express their dissatisfaction over the copyright infringement and rude response to blogger, Monica Gaudio, whose article they published without the authors consent and knowledge.
Monica asked for an apology and a $130 donation to the Columbia School of Journalism for the copyright infringement. Judith Griggs, the magazine’s editor and principal operator’s response to Monica reads like:
But honestly, Monica, the web is considered "public domain" and you should be happy we just didn’t "lift" your whole article and put someone else’s name on it!
He says, that was based on his ’3 decades’ in the publishing business. What follows is even more ridicules:
If you took offence and are unhappy, I am sorry, but you as a professional should know that the article we used written by you was in very bad need of editing, and is much better now than was originally. Now it will work well for your portfolio. For that reason, I have a bit of a difficult time with your requests for monetary gain, albeit for such a fine (and very wealthy!) institution. We put some time into rewrites, you should compensate me! I never charge young writers for advice or rewriting poorly written pieces, and have many who write for me… ALWAYS for free!
When the news spread like wildfire, the magazine’s Facebook page became flooded with new ‘friends’. Overwhelmed by the response, Griggs posted a not-so-apologetic apology in the Cooks Source page in Facebook. The apology however doesn’t even mention the plagiarism allegations:
Well, here I am with egg on my face! I did apologise to Monica via email, but aparently it wasnt enough for her" and then observes "You did find a way to get your ‘pound of flesh…’ we used to have 110 ‘friends,’ we now have 1,870… wow!
The ‘friends’ didn’t like it and every major newspapers have written headlines and a Wikipedia page is also created for the controversy.
Taking internet and bloggers lightly has become more like "kicking hornet’s nest" for Cooks Source.
New hands-free, camera-based game controller from Microsoft, Kinect, is amazing and it makes playing Xbox 360 video games feel like magic. You can wave your arms, move your body, punch, kick, and do all sorts of things in the virtual world.
Kinect is being launched worldwide starting with North America on November 4, 2010, followed by Europe on November 10, 2010, Australia and New Zealand and Singapore on November 18, 2010, and Japan on November 20, 2010.
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