Will Pandora Still Be Around by the End of the Year?

This article was written on August 18, 2008 by CyberNet.

pandora radio.pngPandora is a service that thousands of people enjoy every day, yet there’s a chance that they may not be around for very long. Why you ask? In short, it’s because of the royalty fees that they are required to pay which traditional radio stations don’t have to worry about. Pandora co-founder Tim Westergren recently spoke to the Washington Post saying, “We’re approaching a pull-the-plug kind of decision. This is like a last stand for webcasting.”

Royalty fees that they pay amount to around 70% of their revenue which is simply too much. This is all due to a decision a federal panel made last year about how much services like Pandora need to pay. If Pandora is forced to shutdown, we imagine other services like it, including Last.fm, will have no choice but to shutdown as well. Westergren sounds frustrated, to say the least, and it’s not hard to blame him.

There may be a chance for them to survive, if a State Representative from California is able work a last-minute deal. Westergren is put in a position where he can hope for the best, but he has to be prepared to shut-down if no deal is worked out. He says, “The moment we think this problem in Washington is not going to get solved, we have to pull the plug because all we’re doing is wasting money.”

The numbers below should help put things into perspective as to how much Pandora is expected to pay:

  • Traditional Radio: they are not required to pay a penny in royalty fees
  • Satellite stations: they pay 1.6 cents per hour per listener
  • Pandora/Other Internet Radio Stations: by 2010 they will pay 2.91 cents per hour per listener

Obviously the recording industry wants to maximize the amount of money that they can make, but at what point will they realize the value that Pandora and other Internet radio stations bring to their business. They are an amazing marketing tool for artists and likely contribute to more sales of songs and albums, just as traditional radio stations do.

Copyright © 2011 CyberNetNews.com

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Still awake? There’s a Chumby FunBox app for that

The FunBox is a bedside alarm clock but it’s also a widget-running Chumby, which means it’ll let you check your twitter feeds, load up a track on Pandora or do other inappropriately stimulating activities right before catching some Zs. The device has just passed through the FCC and its paperwork reveals a 3.5-inch (possibly resistive) touch screen, a 454MHz processor, 1GB DDR memory, SD card slot and a USB port for an external drive. We couldn’t tell you price or availability at this stage, but with top smartphones increasingly coming with night dock accessories the FunBox is hardly likely to find a guaranteed perch beside our pillow.

Still awake? There’s a Chumby FunBox app for that originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 01 Oct 2011 00:38:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Windows Vista SP1 in 2007?

This article was written on January 22, 2007 by CyberNet.

The Windows Vista launch date is about a week away and there is already talk about the first Service Pack (SP1) being made available as soon as this year. According to an email that Bink.nu received this is what the first Service Pack should include:

Windows Vista Service Pack 1 (SP1) will be a standard service pack that will include security updates, hotfixes, as well as limited other changes focused on improving quality.

The Technology Adoption Program (TAP) is looking for customers and partners actively test and provide feedback on Windows Vista SP1 to help us prepare for its release in the second half of CY07.  Customers must be willing to provide feedback and deploy pre-release builds into production environments.

It doesn’t sound like they have plans for releasing anything new in SP1, and instead the first Service Pack will cover security patches. In case you were wondering this was Windows XP’s release schedule:

  • Initial release of Windows XP was on October 25, 2001
  • Service Pack 1 (SP1) released on September 9, 2002 which is 319 days after the initial release.
  • Service Pack 2 (SP2) released on August 6, 2004 which is 1016 days after the initial release.
  • [future] Service Pack 3 (SP3) to be released the first half of 2008

If Microsoft keeps on a similar schedule the release date of Vista SP1 would be December 15, 2007 and Vista SP2 would be November 11, 2009. As you can see a release date of 2007 for Vista SP1 does not seem too unreasonable, so if you’re one of the many holding off until Vista hits that milestone you might be able to get it in time for the holidays…maybe Santa will bring it for you. ;)

There has also been some other interesting Vista news around the Web. The Boston Globe is saying that businesses will spend (on average) $9.33 on hardware, $5.35 on software, and $3.93 on service providers for every $1.00 they spend on Vista itself. That number seemed quite large, but after thinking about the need to update software and hardware it sounded about right. After all, a lot of the small businesses (or at least the ones I’ve worked with) haven’t upgraded PC’s and hardware since Windows XP was released…so they are due for an upgrade.

The one other thing that I saw today came from BusinessWire [via CrunchGear]. It looks as though CompUSA is going to offer a money-back guarantee if you’re not completely satisfied with Vista or Office 2007. To take advantage of this offer you will have to fork out $50 for their technicians to install the software on your PC at the CompUSA store, or $150 to have a technician come to your house to perform the installation:

Customers who bring their computer to a CompUSA store before 3:00 p.m. on January 29 will receive a free Windows Vista evaluation of their computer. Customers who receive the evaluation will be able to purchase the software installation for only $19.99 and pick up their computer as early as 12:01 a.m. on January 30. Beginning January 30, software installations will be available for $49.99 for in-store and $149.99 for in-home installations.

Should you decide that you’re not satisfied with Vista they will refund your money (well, probably not the $50 installation fee) and they’ll reinstall your previous operating system. They are really smart for offering this guarantee because Vista is the easiest operating system that I have ever installed. Almost anyone can understand how to go through the upgrade process, but knowing that you can get your money back if your not satisfied will probably appeal to a lot of people.

Copyright © 2011 CyberNetNews.com

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WebSketch – The Online Drawing Tool

This article was written on October 20, 2006 by CyberNet.

WebSketch

The usefulness of this site is definitely questionable but I think it is a cool concept as to what can be done using Flash and a web browser. Yep, WebSketch is almost a clone of the Microsoft Paint that comes with Windows. Okay, maybe not quite yet but it has several features that I was surprised to see.

You can do everything from changing the size of the tip of your pencil all the way to saving your beautiful creation. It doesn’t save the drawing to your computer though, instead it must be saving it to a database so that it is quick to retrieve. You will, however, have to remember the name that you saved it as because there is no “file browser” available.

As you can see in my screenshot above the color selector lets you also utilize transparency in the colors you choose. The thing that frustrated me the most was the inaccuracy of the color sliders. I actually wrote “CyberNet” in the blue color that you see selected, but it turned out to be more purple. Oh well, it’s not like this was going to be replacing Photoshop for me…but it is still cool to show people. đź™‚

Copyright © 2011 CyberNetNews.com

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Will The Next Version Of IE7 Have A New Look?

This article was written on August 15, 2006 by CyberNet.

New Version Of IE7

Windows Live Mail recently sent some invitations that asked people to complete a survey. In the 10-minute survey they showed some demos of the service but one really interesting part is the version of Internet Explorer 7 (IE7) they are using. I currently run Beta 3 and that is definitely not the same. Without using the newest version it is tough to pick out the new features but I have pointed out a few noticeable things:

  • They changed the color of the forward/back buttons from blue to green. The color in Vista was also blue so I wonder if any of the newer Vista builds reflect a system-wide change.
  • The Quick Tab icon now looks like a small tab.
  • The “New Tab” button now actually has an icon.
  • RSS feed icon has changed.
  • Tools menu looks like it was replaced by an Actions menu.
  • I wonder if they completely eliminated the “X” on every tab or if it is a new option for the user. Now there is an “X” located to the far right of the tab bar.
  • The Refresh button has been moved inside the address bar and the Stop button disappeared. Does that mean they combined the Stop and Refresh buttons?

Unfortunately we haven’t heard an official word from Microsoft about what to expect in the next release of IE7 or when it will be delivered.

News Source: Teching It Easy

Update:
Jason made a good observation in the screenshots by noticing that the title says “Microsoft Internet Explorer”. For those people that haven’t paid close attention IE is now named Windows Internet Explorer. This most likely proves that these screenshots are fake.

Copyright © 2011 CyberNetNews.com

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CyberNotes: More Dumb Laws from Around the U.S.

This article was written on July 04, 2008 by CyberNet.

CyberNotes
Fun Friday

dumb lawsBack in November last year, we had some fun looking at some pretty dumb laws from around the United States. We decided to revisit the topic because there are so many more crazy laws out there. Once again, you won’t believe some of the funny, crazy, not to mention dumb laws that are found around the Country (an actually, around the World). Just keep in mind that some of these are really old and aren’t enforced anymore. At one point or another though, they were laws.

Alabama

  • Dominoes may not be played on Sunday
  • You must have windshield wipers on your car

Alaska

  • No one may tie their pet dog to the roof of a car (City law in Anchorage)
  • It is considered an offense to feed alcoholic beverages to a moose (City law in Fairbanks)

Arizona

  • There is a possible 25 years in prison for cutting down a cactus.
  • One must be 18 years old to buy spray paint (City law in Tempe)

Arkansas

  • Alligators may not be kept in bathtubs
  • Honking one’s car horn at a sandwich shop after 9 PM is against the law (City Law in Little Rock)

California

  • No vehicle without a driver may exceed 60 miles per hour
  • Animals are banned from mating publicly within 1,500 feet of a tavern, school, or place of worship

Colorado

  • It is illegal to ride a horse while under the influence
  • One may not mutilate a rock in a state park

Connecticut

  • It is illegal to dispose of used razor blades
  • You can be stopped by the police for biking over 65 miles per hour

Delaware

  • One may not whisper in church (Rehoboth Beach City Law)
  • No person shall pretend to sleep on a bench on the boardwalk (Rehoboth Beach City Law)

Florida

  • It is illegal to sing in a public place while attired in a swimsuit
  • Men may not be seen publicly in any kind of strapless gown

Georgia

  • Signs are required to be written in English
  • Members of the state assembly cannot be ticketed for speeding while the state assembly is in session

Hawaii

  • Billboards are outlawed
  • Coins are not allowed to be placed in one’s ears

Idaho

  • Persons may not camp out on sidewalks in the city (City law of Eagle)
  • A person may not be seen in public without a smile on their face (City law of Pocatello)

Illinois

  • Law forbids eating in a place that is on fire (City law of Chicago)
  • If one wishes to plant new sod in his or her yard in the summer months, that person may not use the city’s water to water it (City law of Cyrstal Lake)

Indiana

  • It is against the law to pass a horse on the street
  • Baths may not be taken between the months of October and March

Iowa

  • Kisses may last for no more than five minutes
  • Tanning bed facilities must warn of the risk of getting a sunburn

Kansas

  • No one may catch fish with his bare hands
  • Rabbits may not be shot from motorboats

Kentucky

  • Throwing eggs at a public speaker could result in up to one year in prison
  • A woman may not buy a hat without her husband’s permission (City law in Owensboro)

Louisiana

  • Fake wrestling matches are prohibited
  • It is a $500 fine to instruct a pizza delivery man to deliver a pizza to your friend without them knowing

Maine

  • It is illegal to park in front of Dunkin Donuts (City law in South Berwick)
  • No person may roller skate on a sidewalk (City of Biddeford)

Maryland

  • It is illegal to take a lion to the movies (City law in Baltimore)
  • It is a park rule violation to be in a public park with a sleeveless shirt (City law in Baltimore)

Massachusetts

  • It is illegal to give beer to hospital patients
  • It is illegal to go to bed without first having a full bath

Michigan

  • A woman isn’t allowed to cut her own hair without her husband’s permission
  • You may not swear in front of women and children

Minnesota

  • It is illegal to sleep naked
  • Citizens may not enter Wisconsin with a chicken on their head

Mississippi

  • It is illegal to teach others what polygamy is
  • Private citizens may personally arrest any person that disturbs a church service

Missouri

  • Frightening a baby is in violation of the law (City law in Mole)
  • You can not have an antenna exposed outside of your house yet you can have a 25′ satellite dish

Montana

  • It is a felony for a wife to open her husband’s mail
  • One may not pretend to abuse an animal in the presence of a minor

Nebraska

  • It is illegal for a mother to give her daughter a perm without a state license
  • It is illegal for bar owners to sell beer unless they are simultaneously brewing a kettle of soup

Nevada

  • It is illegal to lie down on the sidewalk (City law in Reno)
  • Benches may not be placed in the middle of any street (City of Reno)

New Hampshire

  • It is illegal to pick seaweed up off the beach
  • You may not run machinery on Sundays

New Jersey

  • Handcuffs may not be sold to minors
  • You cannot pump your own gas (this one is still true!)

New Mexico

  • You may not carry a lunchbox down Main Street (City Law in Las Cruces)
  • Hunting is prohibited in Mountain View Cemetery (City of Deming)

New York

  • A fine of $25 can be levied for flirting
  • Slippers are not to be worn after 10:00 PM

North Carolina

  • It’s against the law to sing off key
  • Elephants may not be used to plow cotton fields

North Dakota

  • Beer and pretzels can’t be served at the same time in any bar or restaurant
  • It is illegal to lie down and fall asleep with your shoes on

Ohio

  • Participating or conducting a duel is prohibited
  • No one may be arrested on Sunday or on the Fourth of July

Oklahoma

  • It is against the law to read a comic book while operating a motor vehicle
  • Oklahoma will not tolerate anyone taking a bite out of another’s hamburger

Oregon

  • A door on a car may not be left open longer than is necessary
  • One may not test their physical endurance while driving a car on a highway

Pennsylvania

  • You may not sing in the bathtub
  • Motorized vehicles are not to be sold on Sundays

Rhode Island

  • Professional sports, except ice polo and hockey, must obtain a license to play games on Sunday
  • Ropes may not be strung across a highway

South Carolina

  • A railroad may not remove itself from a town of more than five hundred people
  • Railroad companies may be held liable in some instances for scaring horses

South Dakota

  • No horses are allowed into Fountain Inn unless they are wearing pants
  • If there are more than 5 Native Americans on your property, you may shoot them

Tennessee

  • “Crimes against nature” are prohibited
  • Hollow logs may not be sold

Texas

  • It is illegal to sell ones eyes
  • One must acknowledge a supreme being before being able to hold public office

Utah

  • A husband is responsible for every criminal act committed by his wife while she is in his presence.
  • It is against the law to fish from horseback

Vermont

  • It is illegal to deny the existence of God
  • All residents shall bathe every Saturday night

Virginia

  • It is illegal to tickle women
  • Children are not to go trick-or-treating on Halloween

Washington

  • No person may walk about in public if he or she has the common cold
  • People may not buy a mattress on Sunday

West Virginia

  • It is illegal to snooze on a train
  • A person may not hold public office if he or she has ever participated in a duel

Wisconsin

  • One may not camp in a wagon on any public highway or risk a fine of up to ten dollars
  • Livestock have the right-of-way on public roads

Wyoming

  • Junk dealers may not make any business transactions with drunk persons
  • Any person who fails to close a fence is subject to a fine of up to seven hundred dollars

Source

Copyright © 2011 CyberNetNews.com

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Windows 7 User Interface to be a Drastic Change?

This article was written on July 24, 2007 by CyberNet.

Julie Larsen-GreenThe next Windows milestone, currently dubbed Windows 7, could very well be sporting a huge user interface overhaul. Now what makes me think that? Julie Larsen-Green (pictured to the right) is leading the Windows 7 area that is focused on "end-user interaction design and overall experience." You may not have heard of Julie before, but she is the one who pushed for the Office 2007 interface redesign which was a drastic move away from the menus and toolbars we had been familiar with for nearly 20-years.

I think that Microsoft would be smart for making a big change in the Windows user interface because Linux is quickly catching up. It’s just like how OpenOffice was on the verge of being a clone of Microsoft Office, but when Office 2007 was released there was a strong difference established between the interface of the two office suites. As users become more familiar with how Office 2007 operates it will be increasingly difficult for people to switch to the free OpenOffice.

So what could Microsoft do to drastically distinguish themselves from competing products? I’ve been wondering that for awhile now, and I’m sure Julie has some great ideas up her sleeve. One thing that I would really like to see is an efficient an customizable implementation of pie menus. I’ve talked about this before, but I think that using pie menus would offer increased productivity over the traditional right-click menu.

The other idea that is floating around the Internet is that the Taskbar will be replaced with a sidebar. This is seen in almost all of the Windows 7 concepts drawn up including the nice set by OSBeta. Here is a preview of one of their concepts:

Windows 7 Mockup / Concept

It’s actually kind of fun to see what people come up with, but in the end it is Microsoft’s decision as to what the consumers will receive. Do you think Microsoft’s vision of Windows in 2010 is a little far fetched from where we currently stand? Is it time to ditch the Taskbar?

Source: APC

Copyright © 2011 CyberNetNews.com

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Hitachi glasses-free 3D technology lets you view weird chicken things from multiple angles

We might not have chosen the above weird baby chick to pitch our autostereoscopic technology to the world, but at least it makes for some memorable imagery. The hatchling is a 3D image generated by projectors, overlayed on top of a real world object, which can be viewed by multiple people at multiple angles without the need for 3D glasses. Built-in sensors detect the viewer’s positions and adjust the viewing angle accordingly. Of course, this isn’t the first time we’ve seen this sort of technology — heck, this isn’t even the first time we’ve seen this sort of thing from Hitachi, but the company says it’s continually getting better, with a marked depth resolution improvement over a technology shown off this time last year at CEATEC. The company is looking to implement the technology for both digital signage and entertainment purposes, eventually revolutionizing the way the world looks at 3D baby chickens.

Hitachi glasses-free 3D technology lets you view weird chicken things from multiple angles originally appeared on Engadget on Fri, 30 Sep 2011 22:41:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Sony Mylo: Media Player With WiFi and Skype Communicator

This article was written on August 08, 2006 by CyberNet.

Sony Mylo The new Sony Mylo (My Life Online) will do it all! The media player with digital audio, and pictures also has a WiFi connection and a slide down QWERTY keyboard. You’ll be able to chat online using various chat clients (Google Talk, Yahoo! Messenger), although it won’t support AIM, one of the most popular messengers in use. Additionally, it will be the new Skype communicator, and will have a built in Opera web browser.

As for specifications, it will have 1 GB of flash memory along with a Memory Stick Pro Duo slot. The 2.4 inch LCD screen will measure 320 by 240 pixels. Overall size will be about 4.9 x 2.5 x 0.96 inches. It is similar is size to the PSP and the T-Mobile Sidekick 3.

A few additional details: The expected release date is September when you can purchase either a white or black version for around $350.

News Source: Gizmodo

Copyright © 2011 CyberNetNews.com

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Virgin Mobile announces LG Optimus Slider, sneakily postpones data throttling until 2012

Virgin Mobile was originally intending to celebrate the new month by flipping the switch on throttled data, but it decided to push those plans back and announce a couple new phones instead. The prepaid carrier announced the upcoming launch of the LG Optimus Slider (note: it’s not the Optimus Note) and the HTC Wildfire S in October and, in the same press release, nonchalantly mentioned that it would delay reducing throughput speeds for heavy users until sometime next year. No word on why this came about, but we’ll take good news whenever we can get it. The LG Optimus Slider is an Android 2.3 device with a 3.2-inch HVGA display, a 3.2MP camera and 1,500mAh battery, and will be available online beginning October 16th for $200 and in Sprint stores October 30th. The HTC Wildfire S will show up in silver at Best Buy and in white at Radio Shack starting October 23rd, and can be yours for $200 as well. We can imagine which announcement you’re most excited for. Check out both press releases in their glory after the break.

Continue reading Virgin Mobile announces LG Optimus Slider, sneakily postpones data throttling until 2012

Virgin Mobile announces LG Optimus Slider, sneakily postpones data throttling until 2012 originally appeared on Engadget on Fri, 30 Sep 2011 21:33:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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