Archive for September, 2008

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Links 09/27/2008

September 27, 2008
  • Microsoft Corp. convinced a federal appeals court that it shouldn’t have to pay $1.5 billion in damages to Alcatel-Lucent SA, after a lower court threw out the jury’s record verdict over the MP3 digital-music standard.

    The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit today affirmed the lower court’s decision that one of the two patents wasn’t infringed and that Microsoft, the world’s biggest software maker, had a valid license for the second one.

    tags: standards

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Links 09/25/2008

September 25, 2008
  • Have you ever been vexed to find that the titles, keywords or ratings you painstakingly entered to organize your digital photo collection disappear when you move them from one software (or service) to another?

    Or were you puzzled when the data created when you originally took the photo, such as the exposure, date/time or GPS location end up garbled or missing?

    That’s not surprising, according to Josh Weisberg, director of Microsoft Corp.’s rich media group. Despite prior standardization efforts, interoperability of photo metadata remains dismal.

    “There are several existing standards, but they aren’t talking to each other,” he said.

    tags: standards

  • It’s a boon that digital photos can incorporate textual information, leaving behind some film era complications such as having to separately record a photo’s caption or copyright status. But there are some problems handling this so-called metadata, and now Canon, Adobe Systems, Apple, Microsoft, Sony, and Nokia have banded together to solve some of them.

    The companies have formed the Metatdata Working Group and released a first set of guidelines that attempts to standardize some issues that can crop up as metadata travels from cameras to different computers, software, and Web sites. The group announced its work at the Photokina camera show Wednesday in Germany.

    tags: standards

  • Standards – Intel and Oracle will work with other industry leaders to extend standards that enable portability of virtual machine images, such as the Open Virtual Format (OVF), and to create Web services standards for provisioning and management of cloud-based services.

    tags: standards

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Links 09/24/2008

September 24, 2008
  • Standards Wiki & Discussion
    Standards Wiki & Discussion

    Standards
    IBM facilitated an online conversation during the summer of 2008, in which 70 independent, forward-thinking experts across the globe – from academia, standards, law, government and public policy – debated the question of whether standard setting bodies have kept pace with today’s commercial, social, legal and political realities. Actionable suggestions to modernize their processes were offered during the six-week discussion, with an eye toward increasing standards transparency, fairness and quality.

    In this attached file, please find suggestions that were proffered by individuals during the wiki. While they do not necessarily reflect unanimous or consensus views, the thoughtful comments and recommendations illustrate the velocity and impact of this important discussion.

    tags: standards

  • ARMONK, NY–(Marketwire – September 23, 2008) – IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced that, effective immediately, it is instituting a new corporate policy that formalizes the company’s behavior when helping to create open technical standards. Such standards enable electronic devices and software programs to interoperate with one another.

    In the globally integrated economy, open technical standards are integral to enabling the delivery of everything from disaster relief services and health care, to business services and consumer entertainment. They enable governments to create economic development platforms and deliver services to their citizens.

    tags: standards

  • Fail and You Hey, does anybody remember Google’s OpenSocial? Come on, it hasn’t even been a year since it was announced. OpenSocial was supposed to unify social network application developers behind one common API. Revolutionary, innovative, all that shit.

    Still nothing? Ah, okay. What about OpenID, the best damned federated authentication scheme the world has ever seen, but nobody in the world can figure out how to use? If not, surely you must have heard of Google Gears. This was the Firefox plug-in that was supposed to establish Google as a first-rate operating system vendor, even before Chrome was supposed to do the exact same thing?

    tags: standards

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Links 09/16/2008

September 16, 2008
  • Web inventor Tim Berners-Lee on Sunday unveiled the World Wide Web Foundation, an initiative to spread the Web to developing countries and maintain its openness.
    World Wide Web Foundation lauch

    Tim Berners-Lee and Alberto Ibargüen, Knight Foundation’s CEO, at launch of the World Wide Web Foundation.
    (Credit: World Wide Web Foundation)

    The organization, launched at the Newseum in Washington, D.C., is funded initially by a $5 million grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.

    tags: standards

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Links 09/15/2008

September 15, 2008
  • I get suspicious any time competitors band together to set standards, and wonder if it’s ever good for competition. I don’t pretend to know whether this group is a Trojan horse designed to loosen Apple’s hold on digital media. All I know is when I heard the idea, it raised some doubts I’ve had lately about my iTunes content.

    tags: standards

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Links 09/12/2008

September 12, 2008
  • They’d better look fast. Not because RealDVD represents any kind of meaningful technical breakthrough; any number of software programs have been available online for years–many free–that will do what RealDVD does without tethering the copy to a particular hard drive. But because it represents a widening crack in the CSS licensing system that has long held together the DVD ecosystem and was responsible for much of the format’s success.

    tags: standards

  • The RealDVD announcement this week is big news, in that the software’s DRM might actually convince Hollywood to let ordinary people back up their DVDs to their hard drives. Unfortunately, the resulting movie files are locked up tighter than Hannibal Lecter; you can play them on up to five licensed PCs, but you can’t watch them on your iPod or other device. As such, RealDVD doesn’t really give users what they want: a way to put their purchased movies on their PCs and move them to iPods, iPhones, PSPs, and network-attached devices. (PC Mag Editor-in-Chief Lance Ulanoff griped about this last year.)

    tags: standards

  • As a technical matter, RealNetworks’ RealDVD does nothing you couldn’t already do using AnyDVD or one of the many other DVD rippers widely available online. In fact as many commentators have pointed out, it does less: The copy it makes is tethered to a particular hard drive or designated storage device and cannot be recopied or reformatted. By virtue of Real’s market profile and familiarity among consumers, however, RealDVD is doing something AnyDVD could never do: planting the idea firmly in mainstream conciousness that copying encrypted DVDs is legal, at least the ones you own.

    tags: standards

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Links 09/10/2008

September 10, 2008
  • Well, this should be fun. Citing Kaleidescape Inc.’s victory last year in its long-running battle with the DVD Copy Control Assn. over the right to build and market a home-media server that allows users to transfer their DVDs to the unit’s internal hard drive, RealNetworks has announced plans to introduce a $30 piece of software that does pretty much the same thing for anyone with a lap-top computer. RealDVD, as the product will be called, is “a compelling and very responsible product that gives consumers a way to do something they have always wanted to do,” like make backup copies of favorite discs and take movies with them on their laptops when they travel, RealNetworks CEO Rob Glaser told the LATimes. “If you look at the functionality of the product, we have put in significant barriers so people don’t just take this and put it on peer-to-peer networks. I think we’ve been really respectful of the legitimate interests of rights holders.”

    tags: standards