Wednesday, 24 February 2010

3G Mobile Broadband Experiences

Being temporally hospitalized I've had the chance to see how it is to run an internet company entirely via my Laptop and Mobile Broadband. My bother gifted me with a T-mobile USB Stick, and that was enough to get me a Windows connections. Once I upgraded my Linux to Ubuntu 9.10 Jaunty Jackalope, the USB stick give me mobile broadband straight away, with the configuration tools in the menu. Of course it didn't run fine. Every-time I left the Internet alone for more than 5 minutes, the connection would drop and wouldn't come back, until I rebooted. Linux and Windows both behaved like that so it must be a problem with the USB stick.

T-Mobile came which a download policy that blocks out all adult material, and somehow classes Blogspot and You-tube as adult. The on-line prove you age by credit card page, didn't understand my USB sticks phone number, but a quick phone call to there support center, got me registered, and the content block removed. So far so fine. Of course my Vista partition decided to lose its System Event Notification Services, (somewhere near svchost.exe), and my Linux doesn't like my SiS onboard graphic card, several afternoons, editing xorg.conf, didn't fix it, so i'm working and browsing at 800 by 600 on Linux, and not at all on Windows. None of those problems are T-mobiles, it just part of the hassle of having a laptop.

T-Mobile has a 2GB per month, mobile broad band limit. Now some of you light
weight users, might think that enough. We all know that shared movies and porn downloads will fill that quick, but I wasn't trying any of those. In fact one download of a Windows Vista services pack, and a few Linux Updates, was enough to push me over that limit. Once over that limit you can't download anything between the pick hours of 4pm to midnight. But you can still browser the Internet. Topping up the broadband, can be done via a matching card, or over the phone and Internet, you'll probably find it expense and possibly even outside you budget. But when you stuck in Hospital, there really isn't a better way.

I'd say the mobile broadband with a laptop, reminds me a lot of my old modem days, you know its going to get good soon, but at the moment it full of snacks and traps. Roll on the next generation of mobile broadband. And Some Linux guru please fix up SiS 671 support, in Ubuntu. SiS may be a forgotten player in graphics land, but its still built in to many old laptops. Ubuntu even has xserver-xorg-video-sis in it, so it might just be my models that's missing.
To summaries mobile board band works we'll enough, if only the stick would correctly redial without losing dhcp or whatever, and have a large bandwidth limit, i'd be very happy with it.

Tuesday, 23 February 2010

The 2010's the decade the book changed

Idea of the Book, was perhaps the greatest development in mankind's history, it change the passing of knowledge from word of month, family by family to something that could remain permanent though history. The invention of the book, created the peoples of the book, ruled by religion and culture wide believes. The early book where used by the Babylonians and Egyptians, writing on early paper and stone. Old books became permanent believes as evidenced by the middle aged Christians, believing Aristotle works, without bothering to check.

The first major changing to the book, was the invention of the the printing press suddenly knowledge was cheaply distributable, even the poor could own a copy of the bible, and then any book, that would be popular enough to make a profit from publishing. The second major change to the book, is about to happen now, already Internet publishing is a major industry, weather as websites, or as blogs. But the book is only just making it to the internet.

Almost everyone knows the players of the internet book revolution, already, Amazon has been selling books by mail order since the late 90's. And Google has been bizzy indexing every book (especially the copyright free out of print books), since 2003. Publishers are beginning to fear for there profits. On the internet information is available freely. Where comes the money from publishing a book. Publishers have begun suing Google over its indexing plan. But perhaps publishers have more to fear from Amazon. Amazon has make the jump from selling paper books, to electronic tombs, readable only on Amazon propitiatory Kindle tablet. Despite being one usage, black and white, with worse contrast than paper, Kindle is a small success, and where success is seen, others are sure to follow.

The future of book, might go two different ways, or somewhere between. First the internet might become a free library giving every book away for free to anyone with internet access. Publishers would hate this, and they would have change they're business model to gain money by advertising, perhaps even product placing, inside stories, like sometimes happens in Hollywood. The other way the internet book might develop is with regulated digital rights management, DRM, for each copy of the book, paid for and read on propitiatory tablets. This would be far worse, for book owners, who tied to particular equipment, can no longer swap or sell books second hand. Likely a bit of both will development, and governments will be arguing about book ownership and copyright for a long time to come. Here are some of the threads about book lawsuits that are already happening.

Perhaps though, the internet will take the book even further the we can currently imagine, when I read a book, and become evolved in it, I begin creating an imaginary world inside my own brain, that matches the story or the knowledge the author is imparting. Unlike a web-page with its may links, book is a tome of knowledge that tries to be complete in itself. With each book, comes an imaginary world, that might become a movie, a play, or a computer game. This means that along with a book, a certainly amount of artificial intelligence should come. Paper books, just have indices and contents', and Internet book, might come with its own virtual world, automatic illustration. Books might be playable, (like Warlock of Firetop Mountain), with multiple endings. I believe that adding AI to the humble book, will be an even more transformative change to human knowledge than the petty arguments, about ownership and money. The decade of two thousand and teens may be the decade of the book wars. But the decade of the two thousand and twenties might well be the decade of the AI book.