Hurricane Sandy has knocked out 25 percent of all cell towers, cable services in 10 states


FCC Hurricane Sandy has knocked out 25 percent of all cell towers, cable services in 10 states

Julius Genachowski has revealed that Hurricane Sandy has knocked out a full quarter of cellphone towers and cable services in the 10 most affected states. The FCC chief believes that, as more towers expend their battery back-ups and the storm’s continued presence, the situation’s going to get worse before it gets better. He’s also reiterated that users should avoid making non-essential calls and use e-mail or social media to avoid overloading the straining networks. One point of interest in the call, was that land line phone outages were much less widespread — which might be something to remember if you’ve ever considered cutting the cord.

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Hurricane Sandy has knocked out 25 percent of all cell towers, cable services in 10 states originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 31 Oct 2012 06:29:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Wednesday, October 31st, 2012 news No Comments

How the Nexus 10 Stacks Up to the Competition


How the Nexus 10 Stacks Up to the CompetitionGoogle’s Nexus 10 tablet has arrived, designed to serve as Android’s flagship answer to the iPad and Surface. But is the thing worth its weight in salt? We compared the Nexus 10 to the other top new tablets to find out.

On the guts front, the Samsung-manufactured Nexus 10 is more or less in line with the other big name tablets, matching or exceeding the specs of the competition in most categories. Under the hood is a 1.7 GHz dual-core Exynos CPU with 2 Gigs of RAM and a 10.1-inch screen delivering a 298 ppi in a 2500×1600 resolution package.

While the CPU isn’t the quad-core Tegra 3 that the Surface has, it is the most pixel dense screen we’ve seen to date. However, if it is based around the Pentile subpixel technology that has caused issues with previous Android displays, some may have gripes with the display.

How the Nexus 10 Stacks Up to the Competition

The Nexus 10 isn’t the lightest or thinnest tablet, measuring in at 0.35 inches thick and 1.33 pounds. But it does have a massive 9000 mAh battery which gives it the ability to play HD video for 9 consecutive hours. Basically, it will last a long time.

Then there’s storage. Starting out at 16 gigabytes, and maxing out at 32GB, the Nexus 10 offers the least storage of all the competition, though one can argue that with so much being cloud based, 64 gigabytes is a luxury more than anything else.

Of course, specs mean nothing if the OS software doesn’t take proper advantage of it, but given the fact that Google is directly involved with this device, and the consistent excellence of the Exynos processors, the Nexus 10 certainly looks promising. [Nexus 10]

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Monday, October 29th, 2012 news No Comments

Here’s The Truth About That Gallup Poll That Shows A Huge Lead For Mitt Romney


nate silver

Worried Obama fans will be happy to read Nate Silver’s latest post about Gallup, the polling firm that has Mitt Romney with a shocking 7 point lead among likely voters.

Silver’s post is broken down into two parts. The first is a technical discussion of how Gallup fits into his own model (which still gives Obama a 70% chance of winning the election). The second part talks about Gallup’s reliability.

The basic gist is two fold. One, when Gallup is far apart form other polls, Gallup is usually wrong. The second is that Gallup’s history of Presidential tracking is very odd, and prone to huge swings that don’t show up in the results of other pollsters.

Here are a few examples he cites:

  • In 2008, Gallup put Obama 11 points ahead of McCain on election eve. Other polls averaged an Obama lead of 7 points. The other polls were correct.
  • In 2000, Gallup put George W. Bush a stunning 16 points ahead of Al Gore in August.
  • Then later in 2000, in September, it put Al Gore up by 10 points.
  • Then in October 2000, George W. Bush was back up by 13 points. No other pollster had swings remotely this wild.
  • In 1996 at one point, Bill Clinton was up by 25 points over Bob Dole. And that was just 4 days apart from Clinton’s 9-point lead. A ridiculous swing.

Bottom line: Gallup swings wildly and it frequently has results not in line with other pollsters.

Click here to read Nate’s full post >

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Friday, October 19th, 2012 news No Comments

Foursquare launches local search for all, goes after the likes of Yelp and Google



Foursquare just launched a redesigned desktop interface that everyone, not just members, can use for local listings and business recommendations. The company has been on this trajectory for awhile now, especially with the latest Explore map that provides a more tailored search experience for logged-in users. This is all in line with co-founder and CEO Dennis Crowley’s promise that Foursquare is more than just a simple social service; that it serves as a discovery and recommendation engine much like Yelp or Google. Leveraging over 3 billion check-ins and 30 million tips from its community of nearly 25 million members, the New York-based firm is confident it can offer reliable recommendations to the general public. It’s still beneficial to join up — you get personalized filters and access to that handy mobile app — but it’s no longer necessary if you just want know where to get a quick sushi fix.

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Foursquare launches local search for all, goes after the likes of Yelp and Google originally appeared on Engadget on Tue, 16 Oct 2012 06:31:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Tuesday, October 16th, 2012 news No Comments

Retail Guru Walter Loeb Says JCPenney Is ‘Sliding Further Into Oblivion’ (JCP)


black hole

Walter Loeb, a retail consultant and former senior retail analyst at Morgan Stanley, is very worried about JCPenney.

Loeb writes in a column at Forbes entitled “JCPenney slides Further into Oblivion” that he visited the JCPenney store in the Manhattan Mall to see things firsthand.

While he liked the aesthetic changes put in place by CEO Ron Johnson, he was depressed by the lack of customers.

He believes that there are “few reasons for customers to return unless they are given some unusual incentives.” After all, the construction of the new shops is going to take a while, and stores will remain disrupted throughout.

Here’s his bottom line. From Forbes:

My initial hope was that sales would level off in 2013; I now feel that at the end of fiscal 2013 the company may only have sales of $12 Billion, a loss of $5 Billion from the high point of fiscal 2011. It will however be a different store with good opportunity for growth once the whole transformation is completed. It should appeal to a more aspirational shopper.

My conclusion is that the company is becoming irrelevant to investors and a liability for manufacturers since they will have to justify discount prices to other customers unless J.C.Penney carries old styles or exclusive models. Right now the company has been driving away its core customers but has yet to capture a new one as the decline in revenues clearly demonstrates.

NOW SEE:“>Huge Photos Of JCPenney’s New Concept Shops >

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Thursday, October 4th, 2012 news No Comments

Facebook outlines its ad targeting strategy on one handy page, presents a complex privacy picture


Facebook privacy padlockTo say that Facebook has to tread lightly around privacy issues is an understatement, especially with a targeted ad push underway. Rather than navigate that minefield once more, the social network hopes to skip it entirely by posting an overview of how the ad system tracks habits while retaining our anonymity. For the most part, Facebook walks the fine line carefully. Its Facebook Exchange auction system relies on a unique, untraceable browser ID to target ads to specific people without ever getting their identity; both a mechanism targeting ads beyond Facebook and a Datalogix deal to track the ad conversion rate use anonymous e-mail address hashes that keep advertisers happy without making the addresses readable to prying eyes. The initiative sounds like it’s on the right course, although there’s caveats at work. Opting out of any Facebook Exchange ads requires tracking down individual ad providers, which isn’t likely to result in many of us leaving the ad revenue stream. Likewise, those who’d object even to the completely anonymous ad profiling don’t have a say in the matter. With those concerns in mind, it’s doubtful there will be many significant objections in the future — Facebook knows its advertising money train can only keep churning if its members are comfortable enough to come along for the ride.

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Facebook outlines its ad targeting strategy on one handy page, presents a complex privacy picture originally appeared on Engadget on Mon, 01 Oct 2012 16:16:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Tuesday, October 2nd, 2012 news No Comments

Connectify Dispatch lets you put all your internets together into one big internet (video)


In Insert Coin, we look at an exciting new tech project that requires funding before it can hit production. If you’d like to pitch a project, please send us a tip with “Insert Coin” as the subject line.

DNP Conectify lets you put all your internets together into one big internet

If you’ve ever thought “Hey, my internet is pretty slow, maybe I can get a second line and combine them into one big, zippy connection!” then you’re not alone — those of us who are broadband-deprived need all the help we can get. But a quick tour through Google will show you the difficulty of doing that process, called “bonding,” at home. So, Connectify has proposed Dispatch, software that lets you easily combine your WiFi, ethernet and 3G/4G into a single, fat pipe, at a reasonable cost. The company brings along wireless sharing know-how from its Hotspot product to the project, and promises that with every connection you combine, you’ll get a corresponding bump in throughput. Also, the system will automatically failover to a good connection if one goes on the fritz, and even switch automatically between WiFi and 3G/4G to maximize speed and save money.

To prove the tech, the company combined all the available open WiFi networks in a neighborhood along with a tethered Verizon mobile phone, and were able to create an impressive 85Mbs connection, as the video below the break shows. So far, Connectify ha! s vacuum ed up $30K for Dispatch toward the $50K objective, with about two weeks left. So, if you’re desperate for more speed, or just want to trump your neighbor’s bandwidth by stealing his WiFi and melding it with your ADSL, check the source to see how to pledge.

Continue reading Insert Coin: Connectify Dispatch lets you put all your internets together into one big internet (video)

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Insert Coin: Connectify Dispatch lets you put all your internets together into one big internet (video) originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 23 Aug 2012 14:47:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Thursday, August 23rd, 2012 Uncategorized No Comments

India is Giving Away Free Prescription Drugs And Big Pharma Is Not Happy About It


India doctors

A couple weeks ago, Cipla pharmaceuticals ticked off the larger pharmaceutical firms when it announced it would begin offering its cancer treatment at a price 75% lower than its competitors. Specifically for kidney, lung, and brain cancer, the treatment is basically a copy, or generic, of Nexavar, co-developed and co-marketed by Bayer and Onyx Pharmaceuticals.

If Big Pharma thought that was bad, now they have to cope with the Indian government’s new plan to give away $5.4 billion in prescription drugs over the next 5 years, according to Reuters. And the news just kept getting worse, as India announced that branded drugs would be banned from the plan. 

The policy, only operating in state-run hospitals and clinics, will allow public doctors to prescribe free generic medicines to ailing Indians. If doctors are caught prescribing branded drugs, disciplinary action will result. 

With 40% of the population under the poverty line (living off of $1.25 or less), the average citizen spends just $4.50 in medial costs per year. Health care is seen as a luxury for the well-off, private clinics accounting for four times more health spending than public hospitals. Indian officials hope this plan helps change that, predicting that by the end of 2017, at least 52% of India’s 1.2 billion citizens will take advantage of the policy, according to the same Reuters article

While figures for Big Pharma companies like Bayer and GlaxoSmithKline will surely be hit, Indian generic makers including Cipla will be set to benefit the most.  

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Thursday, July 5th, 2012 news No Comments

Weather Channel Buys Crowdsourced WeatherUnderground


The Weather Channel Buys Up the Crowdsourced Weather UndergroundAfter 17 years on its own, the crowdsourced, user-favorite Weather Underground will become a member of the Weather Channel family. But what forecast lies ahead?

Both The Weather Channel and Weather Underground say we’ve got nothing to worry about—the acquisition won’t affect the services offered at The deal will actually afford the independently-minded WU the opportunity to produce new products and services down the line. According to a blog post by Co-Founder Jeff Masters, the two companies have discussed a deal several times over the years, but that due to a recent spike in WU’s popularity and staff, it finally makes sense now.

The plan is to make both and stronger, by sharing content and infrastructure. Many Weather Underground features, such as our Personal Weather Station data, WunderMap, and my blog, are scheduled to also appear on the web site in the coming months. My blog’s main home will continue to be, and I have been asked to continue to write the same variety of science-based posts on hurricanes, extreme weather, and climate change that I’ve provided since 2005. I enjoy communicating weather science, and am pleased I will be able to do this for both wunderground and The Weather Channel, which has an audience about three times as large as wunderground’s.

If everything goes according to plan this could actually be a great thing. We’re daily users of both’s forcasts and WU’s WunderMap. But we also know that acquisitions like this can go horribly wrong. Let’s just hope WU’s weirdness is kept intact under the wing of its new overlord. [Weather Underground and BusinessWire via TechCrunch]

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Tuesday, July 3rd, 2012 digital No Comments

The World’s Biggest Consumer Goods Company Shows That Growth In Developed Markets Is Tanking (PG)


Proctor and Gamble unexpectedly cut guidance this morning, sending shares down in pre-market trade.

In a statement, Procter said “the revisions to the Company’s fourth quarter outlook are primarily driven by slower than anticipated top-line growth from slower than expected market growth rates and market share softness in developed regions and negative impacts from foreign exchange rate changes.”

Translation: high unemployment coupled with slow-to-no GDP growth in developed markets are destroying the top line.

At a Deutsche Bank panel today, Procter plans to show this slide that sums it up pretty nicely.

Procter & Gamble Guidance

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Wednesday, June 20th, 2012 news No Comments

Dr. Augustine Fou is Digital Consigliere to marketing executives, advising them on digital strategy and Unified Marketing(tm). Dr Fou has over 17 years of in-the-trenches, hands-on experience, which enables him to provide objective, in-depth assessments of their current marketing programs and recommendations for improving business impact and ROI using digital insights.

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