The Internet of Things Could Kill You, Or At Least Jab You With A Screwdriver

  Lucas and his killer robots. Photo: JW (This is the transcript of my BBC World Service piece which ran today. The original Reuters story is here.)  I’m sure you’ve seen those cute little humanoid robots around? They’re either half size, or quarter size, they look like R2D2, and if you believe the ads, they …

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Right Ears, Masked Passwords and Nail Printing

I have actually been appearing on Radio Australia’s Breakfast Club pretty much every Friday—around 1.15 GMT–for the past year or so, but don’t always remember to post the links to the things I talk about (or intend to; there’s not always time). Here’s to trying to remember to do it (and audio, now it’s available.) …

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Customer Abuse in Exotic Locales, Part I

HP have long been fighting a battle against refill cartridges, especially in my part of the world. But I think they’re going too far in this case — abusing customers and damaging their credibility and brand in the process.   Recently I received spam in my inbox from the website www.hporiginalsupplies.com, in Indonesian, inviting me to the HP …

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You’ve Read the Column and Blog. Now Read the Book.

I promise I’m not going to harp on too much about this, but today marks the moment when Loose Wire becomes not just a column and a blog (and an occasional podcast) but a book. LOOSE WIRE, A Personal Guide to Making Technology Work for You is now available for pre-ordering here. The book is …

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Spark That Line

I’m a fan of sparklines, Ed Tufte’s graphical depiction within text of numerical data (it’s more exciting than I’ve made it sound). Here’s a couple of updates: First off, The Hardball Times is using them to show a month of scores of the major U.S. baseball teams: The bars are win (up) and loss (down). …

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The Long Tail of the LongPen

Writer Margaret Atwood launched her LongPen invention over the weekend, allowing authors to sign books over the Internet. As CTV.ca, Canada’s CTV news reports, a technical glitch marred the LongPen’s first test: Atwood and fans had to wait while the invention got some final adjustments. When it came back to life, she used the LongPen …

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Novel Writing Online, And A Cartoonist Goes POD

Couple of interesting developments in the publishing world: first off, Techno-literary Blogger Writing Open Source Novel, which is pretty much self explanatory: J Wynia, a web consultant, writer and geek is writing an open source novel called “Inheritance” and documenting the process on his web site as part of National Novel Writing Month. The event …

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How To Trace The Source of a Hard Copy

Good piece by AP on a Electronic Frontier Foundation report saying that tracking codes in color laser printers have been cracked. The report points to dots embedded in Xerox’s color laser printers that appear on the printed page, which can then be traced back to particular printers: By analyzing test pages printed out by supporters worldwide …

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Recycling Publishers’ Rejection Letters

I’ve been looking at Printing on Demand recently — more of which anon — and was pleased to see there’s now a way to recycle publishers’ rejection letters By Printing Them On Toilet Paper: Now, authors whose work has met similar rejection are getting the chance to put it behind them and simultaneously start to …

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