May 10, 2006

the get it
Still not backing up your data? Shame on you. Mozy provides an automatic offsite fully encrypted backup with a very intuitive interface. Can’t afford it you say? Well how about free! That’s right, I said free. Mozy will allow you to backup up to 2GB worth of data for no charge. It can be configured to backup according to a schedule or will even detect when your computer is idle and automatically initiate a backup. With the free plan they will not sell your email address and you will only have to endure a weekly newsletter. This does not apply to the pay plans. The pay plans are very reasonable with the first tier being $19/year for up to 5GB. Right now the product is in beta, so I wouldn’t use it for business data just yet. Also, it is currently for Windows XP users only, although they are currently developing a Mac client. Sign up and give it a try, what have you got to lose, certainly not your data.
the gizmo
A great device for any small business taking advantage of VOIP. The folks at Polycom and Skype have gotten together to produce the Communicator speakerphone. This device connects via USB and is powered with Skype software. It integrates a high-fidelity speaker with two high quality microphones that allow up to four users to be on a conference call. It is a nice little package and lists for about $129.
the gorgeous
A very nice iPhone concept for Apple if they ever decide to get into the phone business. This video is purely conceptual and was created for a spec ad reel by Christopher and Greg DeSantis. It showcases some very interesting functionality and is truly beautiful. At this time Apple has no plans for such a product. I can still dream can’t I?
the green

You know those massive high-tension wires that we see everywhere, held up by giant transformer-like robot towers? Well, not only are they an incredible eye-sore, they are also massively inefficient. About half of the energy that they deliver is lost through resistance, hopefully not for long. Sumitomo Electric Industries, Ltd. has developed a smaller superconductive cable that can carry up to 200 times as much power as copper cable and with an electrical resistance of zero. Also, its smaller size allows it to be buried more easily. This month it is being tested in Albany , connecting two power plants. Ok, so it’s not so sexy, but if successful it could have an enormous impact. Just think about it, distant alternative energy sources (wind, geothermal, etc) that were not practical before could now be tapped without loss and existing power plants could deliver more energy while their output remained the same.
the gossip
Apparently three times isn’t a charm. Thank me for not using the countless Beatle song references the news organizations have been using. For the third time, the Beatle’s Apple Corps sued Apple Computer. This week a judge ruled against the Beatles and ordered them to pay Apple Computer’s estimated £2m in legal fees. The crass commercialism award goes to Steve Jobs for his quote, "We have always loved The Beatles, and hopefully we can now work together to get them on the iTunes Music Store.". And my favorite event from the trial was Geoffrey Vos from Apple Corps demonstrating how to use iTunes during the hearing – downloading Chic’s 1978 disco hit Le Freak in the courtroom. C’est chic!