The continued decline of DSL

So why is DSL continuing to nose-dive? First of all, the phone companies themselves are not interested in pushing the envelope on DSL and instead are focusing on their higher-end offerings: FiOS Internet for Verizon and U-verse for AT&T. Verizon added 201,000 subscribers for its FiOS (fiber) Internet service during the three months ending on Dec. 31, 2011. In comparison, AT&T added 587,000 new U-verse broadband subscribers. U-verse uses fiber-to-the-node technology in combination with VDSL2, a variant of DSL. AT&T lost 49,000 net broadband subscriber ??? mostly DSL.

The question is, Can this newer technology make up for the subscriber losses and help Verizon and AT&T grow their overall share of the U.S. broadband market? From the looks of it, I don???t think so. I expect Comcast, which currently is the fastest broadband provider, according to Ookla???s Net Index, to see market share gains. However, this loss of traction by the phone companies in wired broadband makes the recent spectrum deal between Verizon (buyer) and cable companies (sellers) a problematic deal for those hoping to keep broadband competitive.

Faster than your router? Verizon doubles FiOS speeds to 300Mbps

Just how is Verizon doubling its highest speeds? Schommer said the key technology upgrade is from a BPON to GPON passive optical network. Customers with a BPON terminal installed at their house will need to be upgraded to a GPON terminal to get the new, higher speeds. Verizon said it will be able to upgrade the vast majority of customers.

And caps?

The ‘ITUnet’ Folly: Why The UN Will Never Control The Internet

The Internet is near universal because it is entirely voluntary. All of the Internet’s signature elements are voluntary, not mandated by governments. Internet protocol (IP) is a networking protocol that became universal precisely because it offered the ability for everyone to communicate in basically the same “language.” ┬áNo one was required to use IP; people voluntarily adopted it because it was better and offered the most universal networking opportunity. Moreover, the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), whose “mission is to make the Internet work better,” is an entirely voluntary, collaborative, multi-stakeholder process that functions outside of government control.

For the avoidance of confusion, “voluntary” here means without coercion, not without being paid.

Frankly if the ITU could run an Internet, it would have built one, and neither it, nor its spawn could or did.

Wolf in sheep???s clothing: MPAA???s Dodd pushes ???more subtle??? approach to anti-piracy

???We???re in a transformative period with an explosion of technology that???s going to need content,??? Dodd, a former U.S. Senator, told Variety at an industry event this weekend. He added: ???We???re going to have to be more subtle and consumer-oriented. We???re on the wrong track if we describe this as thievery.???

That “technology that???s going to need content??? is true, but the content it needs, and has proved the most successful in engaging the “consumer” is the product of other “consumers,” not commercial peddlers of lowest common denominator entertainment.

Sure Hollywood gets the headlines, Hollywood has always got the headlines, but connection between people is much more important, and has been known to be so since 2001. Andrew Odlyzko’s “Content is not King” showed this:

“The Internet is widely regarded as primarily a content delivery system. Yet historically, connectivity has mattered much more than content. Even on the Internet, content is not as important as is often claimed”

His example of email as the killer app, is dated, but social networks aren’t. And if you follow the money, you’ll find how insignificant content is relative to connection.

Batching Basics | ICANN New gTLDs

How does it work?

The batching process is activated if significantly more than 500 applications are received. Each applicant will be notified to register into an online system to set a future time target. The ability of applicants to “hit” that target at the selected time will be used to determine which applications are placed into the first, or subsequent batches.

Selected Target Date and Time

Next, applicants will return to the online system on that day and time and try to hit submit as close as they can to their target time. It’s kind of like a game of digital archery. First you set the target and then you try to hit it with as much accuracy as you can.

“How does it work?”

Badly, if at all. Which seems to describe a number of ICANN activities.

“Digital archery!?” It’s just wacky.

Intuit to Acquire Demandforce for $424 million

Demandforce???s success puts it at the forefront of the burgeoning ???Local Internet??? wave. The combination of Internet pervasiveness and smartphone penetration has led to a complete reconfiguration with regard to how local businesses interact with their customers. These local businesses have traditionally spent over $125B/year on traditional media, and this is only in the U.S. But the channels they have historically used, such as the newspaper and the yellow pages, are increasingly compromised. These business owners know they need new solutions, and these dollars will be reallocated to these exciting new platforms. Benchmark believes this ???Local Internet??? wave is many times larger than the ???social??? and ???mobile??? themes with which it is often contrasted.

The Real Story of Send

What it doesn???t tell is the real story of email as we use it today. That story starts with RFC 821, by Jon Postel, posted in August 1982. It begins,

The objective of Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP) is to transfer mail reliably and efficiently.
SMTP is independent of the particular transmission subsystem and requires only a reliable ordered data stream channel.

What makes SMTP so useful and universal today is that it intentionally transcends any intermediator???s silo or walled garden. It simply assumes a connection. So do the POP (RFC918 and IMAP (RFC1064) protocols (used at the receiving end), for which the relevant RFCs were issued in 1984 and 1988.

Those protocols ended up winning ??? for all of us ??? after it became clear that their simplicity, and their oblivity to the parochial interests of network owners and operators, were what we really needed. That was in 1995. In the meantime, a pile of proprietary and corporate email systems competed in a losing battle with each other. Compuserve, Prodigy, MCI Mail, AppleLink, and a host of others were all obsoleted by the obvious advantage of having nobody own the means by which we simply send electronic mail to each other.

Forget the corporate green washing and smug self back patting, here’s the real story.

Optogenetics: The ultimate ???light bulb??? moment

So what else can we do with this amazing technology? Well, it has been used experimentally to help us understand a number of brain functions. For example, in order to understand how choices are made, optogenetic techniques were used to switched on and off a flies??? preference for certain smells. This led to the amazing discovery of the fly???s inner critic, an assembly of 12 neurones that govern the decisions flies make. Scientists have also inserted light-responsive elements into more complex animals in an attempt to prove a causal relationship between certain groups of brain cells and a specific behaviour. In the video below, a mouse runs around every time a blue light is shone into its brain, meaning that the switching on of the light-activated brain cells causes the mouse to run. Another study made a mouse ???prefer??? to freeze on the spot by illuminating ??? and therefore activating ??? its reward centres every time it chanced upon a particular place in its cage. These experiments are elegant and powerful because they identify the particular set of brain cells that cause, or lead to some pretty complex actions.

From the Courtroom – Day 17 of Oracle v. Google

Judge: We heard the testimony of Mr. Bloch. I couldn’t have toldyou the first thing about Java before this problem. I havedone, and still do, a significant amount of programming in otherlanguages. I’ve written blocks of code like rangeCheck a hundredtimes before. I could do it, you could do it. The idea thatsomeone would copy that when they could do it themselves justas fast, it was an accident. There’s no way you could say thatwas speeding them along to the marketplace. You’re one of thebest lawyers in America, how could you even make that kind ofargument?

Oracle: I want to come back to rangeCheck.

Judge: rangeCheck! All it does is make sure the numbers you’reinputting are within a range, and gives them some sort ofexceptional treatment. That witness, when he said a high schoolstudent could do it–

A fish that walks, and a dog that talks! Whoo-ee