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"We used to call the Internet a sort of Wild West. Now it's more like Chicago in the 1920s with Al Capone."
- Keith Laslop, president of Prolexic Technologies

How Apple got green overnight...

At Apple's last special event, after introducing the new iPods, Steve Jobs added this:

"We've got some new packagings for the new nano as well. And it's 52% less volume. This turns out to be an environmentally great thing. Because it dramatically reduces the amount of fossile fuels we have to spend to move these things around the planet."

Isn't that odd?

I mean, I have been religiously watching Uncle Steve's speeches for at least two years now, and I believe this is the first time he's been mentioning the environment in one of his one man shows. More than that, he actually seemed pretty proud about Apple's contribution to the environment.

Well... yeah... I could be almost happy about it... If only Apple was really concerned about the environment! But so far, all I heard is "look we're saving a lot of money on shipping costs and that will help us be cheaper than the Zune".

But there's another reason for Jobs showing his environment friendly side. (Check out their updated environment page on Apple's site).

The real reason is Greenpeace! They came out with a report on how environment friendly consumer electronics manufacturers actually are. And guess what? Apple is close to the last! :(

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What the google.be case is really about

Google.be 28-sept-06
Google.be 28-sept-06

Everybody’s been saying lots of things about the Google.be case, especially that the Belgian newspapers should have used robots.txt to tell Google what not to index. And that the fact they did not use robots.txt clearly show all they were interested is in getting money from Google…

Well, friends, I’m no lawyer or legal expert of any kind, but I’m French… and that lets me read and “almost” understand the terms of the ruling… I guess…

I think the ruling makes it pretty clear what the Belgian newspapers want, and I think this has been mistunderstood:

  • The papers welcome Google to index and display their news as part of Google News! (or at least they don’t care)
  • The papers’ particular online business model is that news are free, but access to archives require payments. Example here.
  • Once an article falls out of the news category and into the archives category, it should not be freely accessible any more.
  • Google, via its world (in)famous Google Cache, often makes the content available forever, or at least for a very long time after is has gone off the official site’s free area.

I guess that’s it: what the Beligian paper really want is a way to get the content out of Google News once it is no news any more.

Now, I’m no robots.txt or Googlebot expert either, but from what I understand there was no convenient way for the papers to tell Google that it is okay to index some content for, let’s say 2 months, but not keep it in cache after that delay.

Goggle made some general comments on the case on their blog, but:

  • They are not allowed to comment specifically on the ruling, so it’s not that useful;
  • They failed to show up at the trial, which is quite unbelievable… but would make it almost believable they fail to understand the real issue that has been raised… :roll:

Note: again, I’m no legal expert. Just trying to make a little sense of all this noise…

Be social: digg this! ;)

Slashdotted! (but not dugg...)

Unique IPs / 5 minute intervals
Unique IPs / 5 minute intervals

My post on iPod car integration got slashdotted last night. That really caught me off guard!

It is pretty incredible how fast the hordes of new visitors arrived. I only noticed about 1 hour later that the server had gotten insanely slow. It didn't crash though (Thanks Debian ;) ). So I made a static page of the post and (mod_rewrite) redirected to it. That brought the server back to normal speed.

Top referers
Top referers

Of course slashdot is now my top referrer of the week... by far (as shown by b2evolution).

Ironically, I actually submitted the post to digg.com, but it was slashdot who picked it up! Sure digg shows on the pie chart, but it's actually less than 1% referrers.

There would be two possible explanations:

  • Either the digg community was less interested in this subject than slashdot
  • or... on shlashdot, all you need is ONE editor to like your post and you're in for 10 000 visitors. On digg, you need quite a few people to like your post before it makes it to the home page...

I think I just got lucky on slashdot. Thank you Timothy! It's been a thrilling experience! ;)

iPod car integration: not quite!

On the last Apple special event, Steve Jobs was almost bragging about the fact that 70% of new cars sold in the US this year had (optional!) iPod “integration” available…

Obviously, he didn’t talk about the rest of the world. But most of all, what Steve didn’t tell us, is how crappy the existing “integration” solutions actually are!

At the very same time, I was at Apple Expo 2006 in Paris, checking out what the car manufacturers had to offer…

iPod & Audi TT

iPod "integration" with the Audi TT
iPod “integration” with the Audi TT

Audi was showing off their new TT. Nice car. Wanna check the inside? You gotta ask the blonde to unlock it for you…

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