Critical Section


Friday,  10/10/03  08:16 AM

Gov Arnold announced his transition team today.  Interestingly, it included Carly Fiorina, CEO of HP.  Her political ambitions have been noted before.  Arnold/Carly in '12?  Also on the list, San Francisco mayor Willie Brown.  A very shrewd choice, because San Francisco is the one big city in California which did not vote for Arnold...

Wired reports China's Great Leap Upward.  "Giving the firmest signs yet that China is about to blast a 'taikonaut' into orbit, news reports Wednesday said it would take place Oct. 15 and be shown live on television."  And no doubt on the 'net, too.

This is a good thing: A bill has been introduced into the House to encourage private manned spaceflight.  Excellent.  (You've got to love a blog called Transterrestrial Musings!)

godless thinks "the Bell Curvers" will win in the end.  "People can and will deny the validity of the g-factor until it becomes the basis for engineering."  Excellent point.  People could and did deny the validity of a round earth until it became the basis for colonization.

SETI@home is transitioning to BOINC, a general purpose distributed computing network.  Cool.  I've been a big supporter of SETI@home.  (I'm currently in 1,215th place out of 4,704,523 users.)

Napster logoWell, Napster 2.0 missed their launch date yesterday.  They are taking "pre-registrations", I pre-registered so I can watch what they're up to.  Stay tuned.

Samsung Napster MP3 playerIn related news, Samsung's Napster-branded MP3 player was announced.  They are trying for an Apple-like player/service tie-in.  In addition to a 20GB MP3 player, it is also an FM tuner.  Stay tuned.

And speaking of Apple, the Windows version of the iTunes Music Store will be announced next Thursday, October 16.  So by delaying two weeks, Napster will launch after the Windows version of iTMS.  Bad timing.  It will be interesting to see what Apple does for software; a big part of iTMS' appeal was the tight integration with Apple's slick iTunes application, for which there is presently no Windows equivalent (the Windows version of the iPod integrates with Music Match).

Yesterday I noted the new Pioneer receiver which supports Windows Media 9 streaming.  Julien Couvreur emailed to point out it only streams WMA 9 audio, not video.  So how long before another one supports video, too?

KiSS has a whole line of DVD players which have Ethernet connections.  Including the ability to decode DivX, which is Media 9's most direct competitor.

Asus PC receiverIn the same vein, Asus has introduced a "barebones" PC designed to sit in your home entertainment stack, not your office.  This is a Pentium-4 based computer with a TV tuner and FM tuner, built-in PVR capability, built-in LAN interface, and standard drive bays for disk and optical drives.  This really sounds like the future, an "open" system which replaces your receiver.  Sorry, Pioneer.

Dave Winer asks "what's the opposite of bing"?  Silence.

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