From September 2005 to June 2006 a team of thirteen scholars at the The University of Southern California's Annenberg Center for Communication explored how new and maturing networking technologies are transforming the way in which we interact with content, media sources, other individuals and groups, and the world that surrounds us.

This site documents the process and the results.

todd's blog

ms double dose

Two big announcements from MS today...mostly likely to try and derail the Apple juggernaut (ie today's vPod announcement). First, MS to pay Real a chunk of money and partner to distribute their online music wares. This is an attempt to displace ITMS as the dominant player in the space. Second, MS and Yahoo have teamed up to take on AOL for instant messaging dominance.

Submitted by todd on October 12, 2005 - 1:34pm

evolution or revolution?

Engadget has posted a preview of the XBox 360. It likely will sell a ton of boxes, but the question is: evolution or revolution? My buddies in the game biz are betting revolution, in part due to the sheer computational power of the box, along with network capabilities.

more @ Engadget

Submitted by todd on October 11, 2005 - 3:21pm

rfid me RFID evil? I know that a technology per se shouldn't really be considered evil, and RFID has some pretty cool applications. But like most cool technologies, there is a dark side. Do you want everything you buy/consume tracked by somebody? In 2001 IBM got patents that discussed monitoring people in "shopping malls, airports, train stations, bus stations, elevators, trains, airplanes, rest rooms, sports arenas, libraries, theaters, museums, etc.."

Rest rooms? RFID toilet paper? Maybe they're on to something...

Submitted by todd on October 10, 2005 - 11:50am

hide my genes

Big Blue appears to be on the leading edge of a new wave...keeping employee genetic data private. It is interesting because IBM is a big player in genomics, so on one hand they are helping to create the issue. But kudos to them for stepping up and saying that the results of genetic tests will not be used against employees.

Congress is working on legislation surrounding this issue, but IBM beat them to the punch. Will the gov screw this one up? I'd say odds are pretty good...

Submitted by todd on October 10, 2005 - 11:45am

musical genome

Can you distill music down to a genetic code? Something beyond "three chords and the truth"? The Musical Genome Project is working on it. Essentially they use human intelligence to create metadata on songs. Of course they have a business model behind it...sell you mixes of songs you like based on musical preference rather than buying preferences.

Interesting concept, and I'd love to see their "scorecards" for the meta data. The problem you run into is that the subjective nature of music drives meta structures crazy. What does "blue" sound like? I know there is a blue, but my blue is likely different than your blue.

Submitted by todd on October 7, 2005 - 5:05pm

redundant, redundant, redundant

And here you were worried about peer-to-peer leading to the downfall of western civilization (at least that's what the RIAA and MPAA would lead you to believe). Well, it turns out what you really need to worry about is "peering" agreements between the previously unknown (to most people) companies like Cogent and Level 3. These are the guys who run the big fat pipes of the Internet. It turns out that many of them have what are called "peering" agreements wherein they establish direct network connections between them with no money changing hands. In theory their customers get better service (faster network connection, not having to weave through the rest of the network), and simplified architecture.

Submitted by todd on October 7, 2005 - 1:11pm

us losing control

Since the internet began (in Al Gore's garage I believe), the US has maintained control of the authoratitaive DNS servers...the master "phone book" if you will for the internet. This has been tolerated uneasily by the rest of the world, but recently other nations have been making noises about wrestling control from the US (specifically, ICANN, a private company set up by the Department of Commerce). And can you blame them? Brazil does 90% of its tax collection online. Most countries have come to rely on the Internet for governance, commerce, and communication. But this change has huge implications. What will an international group say about standards? How about human rights applications?

Submitted by todd on October 7, 2005 - 12:55pm


see if you can win...

Submitted by todd on October 6, 2005 - 5:21pm

nokia looks for an eclipse

Nokia is hoping to attract more developers to its platforms through its involvement in Eclipse, an open-source tools project.

The phone maker has increased its level of participation in the project by becoming a board member and strategic developer. Nokia will take the lead in developing tools for mobile applications based on the Eclipse platform. One of its aims will be to extend the Java-based integrated development environment, or IDE, to have full support for J2ME (Java 2 Platform, Micro Edition).

more @

Submitted by todd on September 23, 2005 - 12:33pm