CES warning: watch for people turning off TV’s

I’ve heard that a few people will be walking around CES’s main floor with devices that’ll turn off TVs. Imagine someone wearing a hat, with an IR emitter that can be turned on and off with a switch. All your TVs will go off and you won’t know why. My suggestion? If you’re a vendor preparing for CES today (like we are at PodTech) that you cover up your IR windows (they are the little windows on the front of monitors that receive remote control signals) with tape.

Why bash Microsoft and not Nokia?

Nokia is giving out cell phones to bloggers just like Microsoft gave laptops out, according to Steve Garfield, who got one of the cell phones and wrote a review. These are very expensive models, too.

Again, I don’t mind this. Steve disclosed that he got it for free when he wrote his review. Now, as a reader of Steve’s blog, I have to decide whether Steve is telling the truth or not. I believe he is, he was showing the cell phone around to lots of people last week at the John Edwards’ rally in New Hampshire and it gave me lots of gadget envy.

Disclaimer of my own. I’ve gotten Nokia cell phones for free in the past too.

Thomas, nice cemetary images!

I wish I could do Photowalking every day with Thomas. He gets interesting images. Yesterday he was shooting a cemetary in Oakland. He has the details up on Flickr (he’s CEO of competing service “Zooomr” — I love that he always posts his stuff first to Flickr). What CEO do you know that uses the competitor’s product before he uses his own? Thomas is the only one that does it in public.

Imagine what would happen if Bill Gates used a MacBookPro every day? Well, he might complain that it’s always shutting down. Heheheh. But, I bet he’d learn a thing or two. Or, if Oracle chief Larry Ellison used MySQL or SQL Server?

AOL lets you sell your video

I’m not planning on doing this — anyone want to buy boring, long videos with Web 2.0 CEOs? Heheh.

But, Paul Colligan reports that AOL is letting people sell videos now.

The problem with buying videos is that Netflix is renting me HD-DVDs for a few bucks each. Getting anything close to that quality would require one heck of a great Internet connection and a big hard drive. Not to mention that Hollywood will not give me movies without DRM attached.

So, that leaves stuff that the rest of us can do. What kind of Internet video would anyone ever want to pay for?

Porn. Even then you can get so much for free so why pay?

Anything else? I can’t think of anything that I’d put a few bucks down to view.

Note the NRA’s tactics — does the tech industry have someone looking out for us?

Hey, maybe we should think about how the tech industry could work the political system to protect its interests. Just like the NRA does, according to this Washington Post article.
For instance, my brother-in-law told me why so many semiconductor companies moved fabs up to Portland, Oregon: water. That means lots of jobs for Portland. Politics decides on who gets the cheap water.

Google moved nearby for both water and good access to low-cost power (a nearby trainline brings coal, and Columbia river brings hydro-electric power). We’re worried that network neutrality is going to be thrown out the window.

In America lots of high tech types are worried that jobs are going overseas.

Note how the NRA gets its way: they pick one political party to back. They make noise even when there’s no reason to make noise. They raise lots of money and hand it out to the right folks who’ll vote their way. And even when they lose they look for a way to get their way.

Who is looking out for US in Washington D.C.? Microsoft? Google? Yahoo? I know Microsoft and other big tech companies have political action committees and lobbyists, but really, are they thinking about the industry at large? I doubt it.

Is there a good place for a geek to get politically involved?

I love Guinea Pig TV

Most of you won’t find this all that interesting. So, visit my link blog if you wanna see the latest in Web 2.0 finery.

But, I’m a sucker for Guinea Pig TV done by Julie Leung’s kids.

To me video blogging isn’t about getting an interview with a presidential candidate. It’s sharing with the world whatever damn stupid thing you want to share. It’s about learning to create media. It’s about having fun!

And, what better to have fun with than a guinea pig! Julie gives her thinking behind this on her blog.

I love video blogs just cause our family friends can create media to try to make me laugh. And vice versa.

Keep it up Abigail and sisters! Your guinea pig is very cute. Maybe I should get Maryam one and start a show on Guinea Pig TV.

Bad PR for Dell but not for Apple?

I totally forgot about the amount of mainstream press that Jeff Jarvis’ generated against Dell when Dell’s customer service told him to “pound sand.”

Duncan Riley reminded me again that the press treats Apple differently than it treats Dell and other companies. Why is that? Is it because Apple gives exclusives to mainstream press and won’t even talk to bloggers?

Is it because mainstream press are sent Apple products to try and use before anyone else sees them? (True story, how do you think that Newsweek and Time gets iPods on its covers at the same time the rest of the press gets to see them?)

Does the mainstream press not want to attack Apple cause Apple is so exclusive and this exclusivity turns into MAJOR TRAFFIC on blogs and Web sites (and, sales of magazines, etc)? After all, I don’t see many, if any, bloggers getting access to its PR events Steve Jobs keynotes. That’s quite different at other companies.

Is it because Apple fan sites drive more traffic than almost any other (true story, when I write something provocative about Apple I get more traffic than anything but Digg’s front page sends)?

So, BusinessWeek, Newsweek, Wall Street Journal, and New York Times, are you going to mention the ongoing problems that Apple customers are having with its products? Or, you gonna go for the “exclusive” about the new iPod phone?

If it’s OK to print miles of bad press about Dell, why isn’t it OK to print miles of bad press about Apple?