Sony Got Pwned, Again

Man, Sony hasn't fared too well over the past few years.  They got hit again last Monday and it seems like a doozie.  Via Reuters (emphasis mine):

"Technicians are making headway in repairing damage caused by the attack and expect to have the email systems back online Monday, said the source who commented on the FBI investigation."

Imagine if you worked for a large company and your email was down for an entire week.  That is just crazy.  Also huge news in the leak; DVD quality copies of five movies, one that has only been in theaters a few weeks, were stolen and leaked online.  Owwww.

I don't know if Sony still has there heads up their asses when it comes to security after numerous attacks but I say this all the time: you could have one of the best security teams in the world and it doesn't really mean shit.  The hackers out there a too many and are too good.  If they really want to hack you, I firmly believe there's not much you can do to stop them (although it sounds like you could do a bit more than Sony).  

 

 

Pug: Made With Paper

Using technology to make art; a dream come true to me.  I love how far drawing apps on things like iPad have become.  I went to art school yet It has been so long since I've taken the time to draw something of meaning and actually finish it.  I did that recently using my favorite drawing app on iPad called Paper.  I'm super happy with how it came out (this is rare for me) and here's hoping this isn't the last thing I draw. 

Pug: Made With Paper

Tech Ready Winter Gloves

Given that we've had 3 snow storms in the span of one week up in the Boston area, I figured it was a great time to talk winter gloves.  Since I am a tech nerd it is important to have gloves that allow me to use my camera and touch screen devices in the bitter cold.  

This past year I've settled on two pair that are perfect for my needs depending on the conditions.  My current favorites and most used are GliderGloves.  These are nice and lightweight so you can easily move your fingers around.  These are perfect all purpose gloves that allow me to use my camera without getting in the way.  And they work great on touch screens.  If it is wet out I would avoid these though as they aren't water resistant at all.

If you're looking for something when old man winter gets really tough I've found The North Face's TNF Apex are the best.  They give extra protection from the cold and wetness.  Their touch screen coverage only includes the pointer finger and thumb, but that is no big deal at all when you need extra protection from the elements.    

Are there different winter gloves that you prefer?  If so I'm all ears.  I'm always looking for the best.  

Microsoft Invests 15 Million in Foursquare

Via Mashable two days ago (emphasis mine):

Microsoft is investing $15 million in Foursquare as part of a licensing deal that will incorporate the the location-based service's data into Microsoft's web and mobile platforms.

The four-year deal, announced Tuesday, makes Microsoft the largest licensee of Foursquare data.

Me, just 5 days before that regarding how Foursquare continues to grow and evolve (again emphasis mine):

I predict they will keep adding features until they get purchased by a one of the major tech companies like Google, Apple or Microsoft.  The data alone is worth it.  

Did they outright buy Foursquare?  No.  But I was right on the money.  This all makes sense though.  Foursquare must have some of the best data around when it comes to data about what we do every day.  And this kind of data can easily be used to make money.  

Wrestling, Yes *That* Wrestling, Is Changing the Content Game

It was announced yesterday that WWE (that wrestling thing that is fake yet is a pretty big business), is coming to AppleTV with it's own dedicated channel as they roll out their own streaming network.  I think first reaction for most would be to laugh but this is actually big news.  

Yes for most WWE is a joke, but like I said, it makes money.  Their revenue for 2012 was nearly half a billion dollars.  I thought they would have died out years ago but whenever they tour they sell out stadiums.  Bigger still, when they have a pay per view event, people actually pay to watch this stuff.   WWE knows that the Netflix model is what people want.  Instead of having to pay for one pay per view event each month that costs from $45-60, WWE lovers are will be able to pay a monthly fee of $10 and get those events along with a ton more and actually save money.  For example you might be able to pull up this epic fight where Hogan takes out Rick Flair from the archives.  

Personally I would never ever pay to watch this but there are a lot of people who do and will continue to do so.  When DirecTV who hosts a lot of these pay per view events heard the news, they were pissed and threatened to no longer offer pay per view wrestling events at all (cue sad violin).  This is DUMB because then DirecTV will get zero money and drive everyone to the streaming model, but this will happen eventually anyway.  

I said at the beginning of the year that we'd see the content delivery space start to rapidly change in 2014. I just didn't think it would be the WWE leading the charge.  

Foursquare: It Keeps Getting Better

I wrote about my love of the Foursquare app a while back and I think I'll "check in" again (sorry that was terrible).  Anyway, I feel like this app gets update all the time and never stops getting better.  I've said before that it is a flagship iPhone app.  It was one of the first and it's still growing strong.  They recently raised a ton of funding, again.  

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Most recent changes I've seen to the app is it asking me about prices of places I've been going to and more questions about the places I am near or checking into.  It knows when I'm in a particular area, and recommends new places to try automatically and you can filter things down on your own if you choose.  

After a recent vacation I got an email asking me to quickly leave a tip on any of the places I visited on my trip.  You can shut this stuff off of course but if you're willing to take a few minutes it can only make the whole system better.  

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But the biggest thing in my mind is the data.  Think of the data you could get about yourself. if you used Foursquare all the time.  A few things come to mind quickly:

  • What restaurant or bar did I go to most last year?
  • How many bars did I go to last year?
  • How many times did I go to yoga last month?
  • What type of food did i get most last year (Italian, American, Chinese etc)? 

With this data Foursquare will continue to evolve and improve.  They were one of the major apps that was there at the birth of the smartphone movement and they've been going strong in it since.  I predict they will keep adding features until they get purchased by a one of the major tech companies like Google, Apple or Microsoft.  The data alone is worth it.