July 3, 2012 |
How cool is it to be two brothers in your 20s, running a thriving Web business out of hip industrial loft space while employing 40 college buddies and childhood friends? Very cool — until you have to fire most of them. "It was a big deal. We lost it all in three months," said Darren Hill, now 36, one of the brothers who founded WebLinc L.L.C. Started as a Web-design e-commerce business in the mid-1990s, WebLinc, now housed in Old City, caught the e-wave, expanding in the excitement surrounding the Internet's then-untapped potential for marketing and sales.
June 28, 2012 |
The days when Americans could avoid state sales taxes by buying online from Amazon.com are growing short. "By the end of 2012, five additional states will force Internet sellers to collect taxes:" Texas and Utah in July, Pennsylvania and California in September, and Georgia in October, says analyst David Strasser of Janney Capital Markets in a report to clients. New York and at least seven other states already have Internet tax collection requirements. New Jersey and five more plan to begin collecting, starting next year.
June 22, 2012 |
After a year of anticipation, the big Internet land rush is under way, and large companies, cities, and other prospectors are staking claims. It's not yet clear whether the new rules will affect the Internet's functioning. But the new look could take some getting used to — and perhaps stir a fair amount of confusion along the way. The land rush was triggered last June by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, when it decided to dramatically expand a landscape long dominated by addresses ending in familiar suffixes.
June 11, 2012 |
Years ago, back when MIT economist Sara Fisher Ellison was starting out, she found herself facing a typical homeowner's dilemma. She and her husband had just bought a new house in Boston, and her whole family wanted to come see it. There was no place for everyone to sleep. Then she opened a newspaper and thought she'd found a solution: $19 mattresses on sale at a reputable store. But when she went to buy them, she instead got a lesson in real-world market economics, courtesy of a salesman.
June 4, 2012 |
I recently bumped into a cute story that seemed familiar. It suggested a switch to an 18-cent coin. I found it by way of Hacker News — for my money ($0), the best news aggregator for the tech set. It was a fairly typical blog post: a summary of a paper that ran the math and determined that the average number of coins one gets from a cash register is 4.7. But the addition of an 18-cent coin would drop that to 3.89. I like this sort of thing. It's quirky. It's math. It speaks to the stupidity of pennies.
June 1, 2012 |
Verizon Communications Inc. is boosting Internet speeds in its FiOS service tiers and will double the fastest download speed to 300 megabits a second. The fastest upload jumps to 65 megabits a second from 35 megabits. Bandwidth-hogging video and the proliferation of home devices is driving Internet consumption, the company said. The faster speeds — which take effect in June — allow the FiOS network to move data more quickly. The average home now has seven Internet-connected devices using a wired or WiFi Internet connection and by 2015 the average home is projected to have between nine and 15 Internet-connected devices.
May 19, 2012 |
ATLANTIC CITY — At the East Coast Gaming Congress here on Thursday, Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno sounded more like she was on the campaign stump than simply speaking to gambling-industry executives. Guadagno, a fill-in for Gov. Christie, dodged all questions regarding Internet gaming and sports betting at the gathering in the new Revel Casino. Instead, she chanted a familiar chorus: That it was her boss who ensured that Revel got built with $261 million in state tax credits, who streamlined regulations in the battered gambling town to entice investors, and who was going all-out to get Atlantic City back on track.
May 11, 2012 |
Verizon Wireless strikes a spectrum deal with Comcast. Comcast launches Streampix to compete with Netflix. Netflix complains that Comcast's monthly data caps give Streampix an unfair advantage. Sony drops plans for a virtual cable-TV service, also blaming data caps. Verizon says DSL customers can't save money by canceling phone service and relying on Internet calling. It's hard to keep up with all the telecommunications headlines lately without getting a bit dizzy. But there's a key thread connecting these recent stories that's worth paying attention to. All involve threats to the idea of the Internet as an open, level, and competitive playing field.
May 9, 2012 |
With his political stock rising, Gov. Christie may again be backing off on approving Internet gaming, and has delayed action that would free New Jersey from a federal ban on sports betting, says the Democrat who sponsored both measures in the Legislature in the hope they would boost Atlantic City. "Christie is putting the future of A.C. in jeopardy because of his overriding concern for support from [Sheldon] Adelson, a right-wing money machine of Newt Gingrich and right-wing causes; Caesars, a huge contributor based in Nevada; and Woody Johnson, Jets owner and NFL opponent of sports gaming," Sen. Raymond Lesniak (D., Union)
April 25, 2012 |
WHAT'S REALLY hot on Internet TV? Roku CEO Anthony Wood recently shared the top 10 channels on his platform. Netflix remains No. 1, followed by Pandora, Hulu Plus, Amazon Instant Video, the ad-supported Crackle movie channel, HBO Go, the casual video game Angry Birds (playable on the top Roku 2 XS box), Disney, NBC News and Glenn Beck TV. Let me tack on some personal faves. AOL HD: This polished hub serves up tech news from Engadget, scenic reviews of hot European cars, trailers from Moviefone and the chance to stream full albums from AOL Music.