The story of this Sony factory, which took the full brunt of a powerful tsunami that washed through a year ago, reflects that of much of Japan's northeastern coast - abrupt tragedy, battled with ingenuity and stoic resolve, and now grim economic reality.
Electronics factories throughout the region were disrupted by the magnitude-9.0 earthquake and deadly tsunamis that followed on March 11 last year, but few took the damage like Sony's Sendai Technology Center, located less than a mile from the sea.
Earthquakes are common in the region, but tsunamis less so. Locals were caught off guard when the waters crashed this far inland, flooding to meters deep within minutes and carrying a churning morass of cars and debris. Many in the neighborhood raced to take refuge in the facility's main building, at six stories high the tallest around. Read more...
Some big names in Silicon Valley's tech community are helping a group of talented, young students who are victims of circumstance and politics.
They are undocumented students brought to this country illegally. In many cases they came to America as young children, even as infants, with no choice in the matter and raised as Americans.
This country is their home.
But as young adults, they are in limbo. They are unable to work legally, have no clear pathway to permanent residency, and face difficulty in financing their education because of their immigration status.
"We are essentially punishing the kids for the actions of their parents; they didn't do anything wrong," said Jeffrey Hawkins, founder of Palm Computing, who is among those in Silicon Valley who are helping to fund a scholarship program directed at these students. Read more...
If you have a multi-billion dollar business selling servers and PCs directly to small and medium businesses, what happens when companies start shifting some of their computing needs to the cloud? You shift from being a manufacturer of IT gear to being a maker of cloudy systems and applications and a reseller of cloudy wares where you don't have products.
This is the ambitious plan that Dell has for its Cloud Business Applications division, which was created last August to focus solely on software-as-a-service applications and which is one of the units that John Swainson, the former head of CA Technologies and a software bigwig at Big Blue before that, is taking control of now that he is president of Dell's nascent software business. Read more...
The word on the street about Windows 8 is mixed at best. It's Microsoft's tablet PC play -- so much so that the desktop is getting short shrift. This doesn't seem wise, even if desktop sales are being displaced by tablets.
Can Microsoft really afford to alienate one of its biggest market segments for a whole product cycle?
In a word: Yes. In fact, doing something this risky might well be vital to Microsoft's survival. Here's why. Read more...
Personalized children’s books can make some of the best gifts for kids. Imagine a child opening a book where she is the star: A gift entirely about her! Picture her smiling as she looks through a book with her name or photo, and then remember that this is a gift with no assembly, mess or small parts to pick up later! From choosing custom features, to including names of siblings and favorite activities, today’s options for custom children's books are one way to thrill a child — and a parent.
These are some of my favorite personalized books:
The First Adventures of Incredible You
The creme-de-la-creme of customization, The First Adventures of Incredible You ($36.95 on CustomMadeForKids.com) is a favorite go-to gift of mine. It has beautiful illustrations, options for customizing nearly every page with the child’s favorite people and places from your child’s birth through their many “first” experiences— like what street they’ll fly down learning to ride a bike, what team they’ll be rooting for at their first sporting event, a favorite food cooked by a relative. This book is a fun keepsake, and appropriate as a newborn gift, though kids of any age will enjoy the unique personalization. Read more...
In this April 10, 1912 photo, the Titanic leaves Southampton, England on her maiden voyage to New York City.
On April 15, 1912, the RMS Titanic's maiden voyage took a disastrous turn. Right now, as the 100-year anniversary of the tragic event approaches, preparation for the journey is being recreated on Twitter.
The Next Web's Paul Sawers reports that U.K. publisher History Press set up the @TitanicRealTime Twitter account in order to commemorate the centennial of the fateful night. In the month leading up to it, the @TitanicRealTime account is publishing "real-time" tweets from individuals who were involved in the events. Read more...
China's top two video websites announced plans Monday to merge in hopes of creating the dominant competitor in a fast-growing industry that is drawing viewers from bland state television.
Youku Inc. and Tudou Holdings Ltd. said the new company, Youku Tudou Inc., will be created in a stock-for-stock transaction. They said it requires shareholder approval but is expected to be completed by the third quarter of this year.
China's dozens of privately owned video websites have nearly 400 million viewers and industry analysts say the field might represent the future of Chinese video watching and advertising. Read more...
BandPage, Facebook’s top app for artists trying to stream and promote their music to fans, now powers 500,000 musician Pages. Just 6 months ago that number was 250,000, showing the rapid shift in focus of bands from MySpace and standalone websites to Facebook where fan retention is better. BandPage also just announced new features that allow listeners to tell friends about favorite songs through their Facebook Timeline and the Ticker feed with a single click.
Publishing to Ticker helped Spotify score massive growth and it could do the same for BandPage. BandPage needs to do whatever it takes to keep growing its artist count since it can’t rely on big checks for custom development work from the world’s most popular acts — a model that’s helping other musician marketing services turn quick profits. Read more...
Safari 5.1.4 contains improvements to performance, stability, compatibility, and security, including changes that:
- Improve responsiveness when typing into the search field after changing network configurations or with an intermittent network connection
- Address an issue that could cause webpages to flash white when switching between Safari windows Read more...