Tuesday, March 20, 2007

No peace in the valley

My last remaining grandparent died last week, and I spent the week in the States for the funeral, entirely offline. So I know there was a lot I missed (my bet is on Deutsche Telekom), much of which is past its shelf-life for commentary. However, in catching up with my emails, the following items have caught my eye, FWIW:

  • A mega-uber value reader in Finland alerts me to a tender (Swedish) underway in the tiny island municipalities of Brando and Kumlinge for an open FTTH network. Apparently it's envisaged that customer premises will only be connected to the network if they agree to subscribe to at least one service on offer from one of the service providers who are hoped to materialize. Entry level pricing is said to be EUR16 per month. Yet another example of local activism looking to plug the holes in incumbent broadband rollouts.
  • I notice with interest that the Tor project has secured funding from Google for a handful of developer spots at Summer of Code. Interesting contrast in light of anxiety over a Net Neutrality about-face from the Big G. A good friend also points out that it's counterintuitive for Google to be investing time and money in something which could facilitate skamming AdSense - maybe this is about threat intelligence.
  • Jeremy Penston at IPDevNet has been on a bit of a hotstreak, producing a couple of interesting and informative pieces on online video. Well worth the read.
  • Adobe has gone live with a public alpha of Apollo, a video preview of which I linked to here. I agree with Dean that there is some very exciting stuff ahead.
  • UNESCO has published what looks to be an interesting report on the ethical implications of new technologies, now added to my pile of must read material.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Lost and found

Sky ad 03 07
Originally uploaded by jimiinc.
I know I haven't posted anything in some time. I've had a lot of loose ends to tie up and have been otherwise distracted, so apologies. On the bus to a meeting today I passed a lot of very prominent Sky advertising like this, which highlights that Virgin Media customers in the UK are to lose content like "Lost" and "24" due to the public bust-up between Virgin and Sky. One other billboard I saw pulled no punches: "Get Jack Back," it screamed, followed by a succinct explanation about Virgin's apparent decision to drop Sky content and ending with the message "To subscribe to Sky, call..." What amazes me about all of this is the sheer speed with which Sky has been able to move. What was a public spat a week ago has been turned into a national ad campaign virtually overnight. At lunch today someone reminded me that this is exactly the sort of advertising at which Richard Branson excelled ten years ago during his bitter war with British Airways.

Friday, March 02, 2007


This is a test. Apparently some people are experiencing problems with Blogger.