Blur is a game created by Bizarre Creations the people behind the Project Gotham series and Activision the pure play online and console game publisher. Due for release in May later this year, I played a demo version of the game and noticed was a social twist has been placed within the game. Although other games do have a social element, like for example being able to buy and sell cars on Forza, or set up private races in most racing games etc, but Blur is pushing the social angle a little further by allowing gamers to directly Tweet their progress using their Twitter account details.

Adding the element of a four way split screen, this game sounds like hours of fun for you and your friends.

Right now the developers are looking for feedback from gamers who have tried the demo in order to put the finishing touches to the final release.

Check out the trailer below :

Find out more about Blur at :

http://www.blurgame.com/

Find out more about Bizarre Creations at :

http://www.bizarrecreations.com/

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Focusing on fashion, consumers will soon be able to fund designers directly through a website called FashionStake in return for credits on clothes. This model offers an alternative to purchasing from retailers and the communication channels of this model allows for the unique opportunity of supporting the creative process.

Not sure if it will have the same effect as the music industry had with peer-to-peer as suggested by Reuters below, but ‘crowd funding’ models are probably here to stay, and will probably sit alongside existing retail channels. If the model exceeds expectations, then there is no reason why high street retailers cannot begin to try similar models.

Nike has been offering personal sports shoes for some time now through Nike ID. So although this may not be as personal as what FashionStake are offering, but by simply giving consumers the chance to contribute is definitely a way forward.

Content Courtesy of Reuters :

NEW YORK, April 1 (Reuters) – An Internet start-up called Fashion Stake launching in coming weeks aims to shake up the fashion industry, just as peer-to-peer file sharing changed the music industry.

Fashion Stake will allow customers to directly fund fashion designers by browsing on-line collections and buying a stake in a collection in return for credits to buy clothes. Patrons can also share ideas with designers and vote on collections.

Read the full article at :

http://smallbusiness.uk.reuters.com/2010/04/06/new-website-brings-crowd-sourcing-to-fashion/

Find out more about FashionStake at :

http://www.fashionstake.com/

Do you need cash for a personal project without sacrificing any ownership of your idea, then Kickstarter may be for you. Kickstarter is a New York based website that allows its users to create a project with a set cash objective and deadline. Other users are then open to making contributions towards the project, however contributions are not made until the total cash objective has been met. For providing this service Kickstarter takes a 5% commission.

US based users are the only ones currently allowed to create projects, but users all over the world can make contributions right now. There are plans to roll out the full service to other countries in the future.

This is not only a simple and effective idea, it is also carries a solid E-commerce model to boot.

Find out more about Kickstarter at :

http://www.kickstarter.com/

If you like Kickstarter, you may also be interested in :

http://www.indiegogo.com

With the rise of 3D TV during this year Sony is looking to push forwards on all technological fronts. Recently re-styling their Japanese retail store in line with Apple’s clean cut style, they are also looking to launch an online content service that will no doubt be available across their TV’s, Consoles and the Web.

Sony don’t tend to innovate like they used too, and it looks like Apple have been holding that title for the last decade. But with a vast number of loyal customers, a distinct design style of its own and a brand as big as Coca Cola, Sony will not have to try to hard to win new customers.

Content Courtesy of The New York Times :

Sony is working with Google and Intel on Google TV, a platform for a new generation of televisions and set-top boxes that will make it easier to browse the Web on TV screens. The first devices featuring the technology are expected to be on sale this summer.

Read the full article at :

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/29/technology/29sony.html

See also :

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/18/technology/18webtv.htm

Understanding the habits of your users is an on-going process. Learning about the pages visited, time spent on those pages, new vs returning visiting numbers, keywords, geographic locations etc can help to improve the value provided by your website. If you want the exact numbers and science then you would probably need to spend money developing or purchasing a bespoke piece of code. There are vendors out there also that provide this type of software, but, at a cost.

Google has provided software for this purpose for a number of years now, and because it’s free, it has helped many people get an idea of what their visitors maybe doing. If your running a Fan Page on Facebook and you like Google Analytics, there has been a JavaScript issue that has been stopping you from using the Google Code on your Fan Pages.

Now a company in London, UK,  called Webdigi, has provided some help. For information on how to set up Google Analytics on your Fan Page go to :

http://www.webdigi.co.uk/blog/2010/google-analytics-for-facebook-fan-pages/

Inspiration courtesy of the Social Media Examiner at :

http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/how-to-add-google-analytics-to-your-facebook-fan-page/

When I first heard about the iPhone, I thought cool, this should do the job. But then it came out I just wasn’t feeling it. Even today after 3 generations of iPhone a couple of sore points still stick out, such as, not being able to run more than one application, and not being able to carry a spare battery.

With the release of the iPad tomorrow (Correction : Saturday 3rd April 2010) in the United States to the public and Europe later this April, is this product going to be a white elephant, or is it going to tell other manufacturers what consumers really want? Let me explain further, first with some of the limitations. No USB ports, no on-board camera, no Adobe Flash and a little on the heavy side. So it certainly doesn’t sound like much of a communication tool.

But if you ignore these limitations, and look at the iPad from a simple point of view then maybe a large touch screen that is not as heavy as a laptop may have its uses around the house. So by introducing this new product into our lives, Apple will be the guinea pig for other manufacturers who will be watching very closely as to the feedback from consumers around the world. To the point, is there a need for another device in the house?

For the same money consumers could purchase a net book from a range of manufacturers, which have all the features missing from the iPad, but if you feel like you need a large touch screen then maybe the iPad is for you. Apple will no doubt be introducing improved versions of the iPad over the coming years, like maybe they will add the 3D motion censored camera, but like the first iPhone…I’m just not feeling it yet.

Find out more about the iPad at :

Keynote Speech :

http://www.apple.com/quicktime/qtv/specialevent0110/

Release Information :

http://www.apple.com/pr/library/2010/03/05ipad.html

USA Site :

http://store.apple.com/us/browse/home/shop_ipad/family/ipad?mco=OTY2ODA0NQ

Read a review on the iPad, courtesy of Engadget at :

http://www.engadget.com/2010/01/27/apple-ipad-first-hands-on/

Information Gathering was a class I took at university. As a process, this a very important part for researching and creating web applications. However what are the effects of continuous information gathering in one area?

10 years ago, I thought that the refining process of information would happen quite quickly, because information from websites that we tend to use on a daily basis like shopping data etc, is fairly finite.

But the key sites that hold and gather information as the one stop shop for basic necessities of living are still hard to define.

A few however have clearly emerged for example, if you happen to be the best at creating the basic services of your industry and not necessarily the first, you have a good chance of making your position on the Internet number one in your market place. Examples of this would include Search Engine – Google, Online Book Store – Amazon, Online Auction – Ebay, Reference – Wikipedia and Social Networking – Facebook, whilst the rest cover a vast plethora of niche and other fragmented market places.

Maybe the future will be the same, with just a few more defining sites or companies emerging over the next 10 years whilst the rest of the fragmented market place continues to evolve and fragment even further.

Using the same basic principal of continuous information gathering, sites like Quora are aiming to create these types of one stop shops to find information quicker.

Content courtesy of Quora :

About Quora

Quora is a continually improving collection of questions and answers created, edited, and organized by everyone who uses it. The most important thing is to have each question page become the best possible resource for someone who wants to know about the question.

Accumulating Knowledge

People use Quora to document the world around them. Over time, the database of knowledge should grow and grow until almost everything that anyone wants to know is available in the system. When knowledge is put into Quora, it is there forever to be shared with anyone in the future who is interested.

Another question and answer type of site, this one however throws in a twist of Wiki, in that there is a continuous process if information refining going on by its users.

Created by a few ex-Facebook employees last year and now released on an invite only model, maybe Quora will be one of the next big sites of the future.

Find out more about Quora at :

http://www.quora.com/about

When a new technology arrives it is then integrated across all types of communication channels and changes the services offered by those channels. Recently HD made its way on to our screens, now you can buy phones that allow you to create High Definition video and upload it directly to the web.

With the imminent arrival of 3D TV, we are going to see 3D overlap itself with HCI(Human Computer Interaction). We will see this in projects like Microsoft’s Natal. This is where the power of hand gestures will now allow us to interact with games and other applications.

The power behind some of this fourth coming technology is a company called Canesta, who have spent a lot of time and money to get to where they are. They have developed a chip that allows 3D gestures to be recognised by the computer and small enough to be fitted into everyday consumer devices.

By placing 3D cameras into every conceivable device will now allow us to change the way we interact with onscreen menus, but also the way we see the on screen information.

Minority Report is just round the corner.

Find out more about Canesta at : http://canesta.com/

Read an article about the story at :

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/29/technology/start-ups/29canesta.html?dbk

Sites like http://interneteyes.co.uk do have the grounds for a valid model. If cameras were simply observing just the functional parts of a city, like for example the copper wiring, which serve hundreds of peoples Internet needs then crime could be reduced, or at least the communication of crime may be increased in speed.
And if privacy issues can be addressed then cctv may become the next reality tv show.

Under The Wire.

Posted: March 25, 2010 in Cyber Culture
Tags: ,

With issues of privacy from intensive marketing campaigns, sharing files across the web, governments controlling web access, the Internet will always continue to provide users with new alternate options for by passing government controls.

Haystack provides such a service, providing a proxy like system, that uses encryption to allow communication.

Find out more about Haystack at :

http://www.haystacknetwork.com

I have been seeing adverts recently for a mobile phone that films in HD. The Sony Ericsson Vivaz allows you to record in 720p HD, which is the same as any half decent compact camera. Weighing in at just under 100g, with on board card storage, this is a good all rounder mobile phone that has a touch screen interface.

Read a review courtesy of Mobile Phones UK :

http://www.mobile-phones-uk.org.uk/sony-ericsson-vivaz.htm

Watch the promotional video here :

Find out more about Sony Ericsson at :

http://www.sonyericsson.com

If somebody steals your electricity and commits a crime, is it fair to have your electricity supply vastly reduced, and in some cases cut off. The analogy here is broadband and this is an extreme case, but still possible and not fully covered by the new bill.

In addition to digital areas like Domain Names, Definitions of Broadband, Video Games Age Classifications and more. the government are going to introduce some new legislation with regards to all the illegal downloading that’s going on.

Unfortunately this is not going to put a stop to it, and no matter what deterrents are put into place, evolving technology will offer a new route to sharing, and it will no doubt be even harder to track.

A demonstration against the bill not receiving a proper debate being planned. If you would like to make your voice heard then visit :

http://www.38degrees.org.uk/page/speakout/extremeinternetl

Content courtesy of The Daily Telegraph :

More than 10,000 Britons have demanded a parliamentary debate on the Digital Economy Bill, which is currently going through the House of Commons. A protest is also being organised for this Wednesday at Parliament about the Bill which is likely to be rushed through parliament in the so-called “wash-up” period immediately before the election. …Read More.


South Korea has provided this type of service to its citizens for at least a couple of years now, and last year I read about a similar type of clinic near Redmond in America.

Now the UK has its first facility to help those that feel they are suffering from this type of technological  addiction.

Find out more about the hospital providing the service at :

http://www.nightingalehospital.co.uk/services/addictions/technology-addiction/

Related Links :

http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20100318/tc_afp/britainhealthmindtechnologyinternetchild

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/11/18/technology/18rehab.html

Keep up to date with world disaster data and the latest climate data from a Hungarian National Association company, they are a non-profit organisation.

Some of the data they give is on what they call an ‘Alert Map’. Found out about this site a couple of years ago, nice to see they are still continuing to provide a valuable service.

Content courtesy of RSOE/EDIS :

“Nothing happens unexpectedly, everything has an indication, we just have to observe the connections.”

Let me introduce our services. The Hungarian National Association of Radio Distress-Signalling and Infocommunications (RSOE) operates Emergency and Disaster Information Service (EDIS) within the frame of its own website which has the objective to monitor and document all the events on the Earth which may cause disaster or emergency. Our service is using the speed and the data spectrum of the internet to gather information. We are monitoring and processing several foreign organisation’s data to get quick and certified information.

Find out more about RSOE/EDIS at : http://hisz.rsoe.hu/alertmap/


Sony Playstation Move.

Posted: March 20, 2010 in Gaming
Tags:

Sony, like Microsoft’s Project Natal, will be introducing their motion censored game controller later this year called PlayStation Move. But this may not happen, Sony have not always launched products on time.

With Nintendo leading the way so far, it looks like motion censored controllers will be leading the battle between the big three giants in 2011.

Read more about the Sony’s new controller, courtesy of Engadget at :

http://www.engadget.com/2010/03/11/playstation-move-everything-you-ever-wanted-to-know/