Living in Tech

The latest gadgets, games and toys, not to mention the generally cool stuff we do outside of work.

Next Gen. Console Game Lineups Hint at Future Directions

Posted In Living in Tech
Perhaps the most surprising thing about Microsoft and Sony’s next generation console game lists is that there were so few surprises. By December 31, Microsoft and Sony plan to release at least 23 and 33 titles, respectively. Based on sheer numbers, it would seem that Sony would have the upper hand, but a closer look reveals that the company might have been trying to boost its numbers: More than half of the titles are digital downloads, of which it appears… continue…

Big Data in Our Lives: For Better and For Worse

Posted In Living in Tech
An engaging and thought-provoking book like Big Data: A Revolution that Will Transform How We Live, Work, and Think couldn’t be any timelier. Given the crash course on data collection and analysis the American public has gotten from our national security agencies in recent months, we need to know more, and we need to know now. Victor Mayer-Schonberger and Kenneth Cukier call themselves “messengers” about Big Data and not necessarily “evangelists,” but it’s hard not to get a little excited… continue…

Transmedia Uses Tech to Change Storytelling

Posted In Living in Tech
Jay Bushman is an Emmy-winning transmedia producer, show runner and writer. He was behind the Jane Austen inspired, tremendously successful, 153 episode series The Lizzie Bennet Diaries and more recently, its 27 episode summer spinoff Welcome To Sanditon. An innovator in the way we experience narrative entertainment, Bushman is the co-founder and leader of the group Transmedia Los Angeles, the creator of the Fourth Wall Studio series Dirty Work, and the genre-defying, animated steampunk show Airship Dracula. He’s comfortable telling… continue…

Apple May Be Close to Solar-Powered Mobile

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Apple is reportedly looking for thin film engineers with experience in the solar industry, signaling an interest in further extending the life of its mobile devices via solar power. According to a report on, Apple is focused on engineers from either the solar or semiconductor industries. Given that a job posting for the title cites desired qualifications such as working with Asian suppliers, experience in solar manufacturing and “a deep understanding of the vendors, equipment and technologies in the… continue…

Run an Oil Field With This Documentary Game

The oil industry has never been without its critics. Celebrities speaking out against it include the likes of Neil Young and Daryl Hannah, who have singled out Fort McMurray in Alberta, Canada, because of the oil sands extraction going on there. The effort there has been described by Prime Minister Stephen Harper as the world’s largest energy project. Now there’s a Web documentary game coming in November: Fort McMoney by David Dufresne, is all about Fort McMurray. Dufresne is known… continue…

What Microsoft CEO Search Leader Failed to Reveal

Posted In Living in Tech
Microsoft board member John Thompson is tasked with leading the search for the Redmond giant’s new CEO. As he winds his way through the process, there are a few points he wants Microsoft watchers to know – he’s nobody’s fool. Thompson, in an interview with the Wall Street Journal, made several points regarding the CEO search and the various constituents who are expected to weigh in. For starters, he says he won’t be “Bill’s pawn.” Yup. Bill as in Bill… continue…

Oracle Employee’s Unauthorized SaaS – Stripping as a Service

Posted In Living in Tech
During Oracle’s OpenWorld conference last year, one Oracle employee reportedly took SaaS to a whole new level. Rather than spending $33,540 on software as a service expenses, the employee reportedly used it for “stripping as a service” expenses at a San Francisco all-nude gentleman’s club, according to a story in the San Francisco Chronicle. The employee, presumably in violation of Oracle’s customer or employee entertainment policy, ran up his “stripping as a service” tab at New Century Theater on his… continue…

Bay Area Techs: Congestion Is All Your Fault

It’s tough to be a newly rich tech worker in the Silicon Valley/Bay Area, what with all those stock options, headhunter calls and the like. Not to mention taking the blame for driving up rents, increasing traffic and failing to fit in with the area’s old guard. In a region usually known for its tolerance, new McMansions, all those extra cars and the rising cost of living have set up a culture clash that could transform the region. TechCrunch Co-Editor… continue…

Miss an Oracle Meeting? Try America’s Cup Excuse

Posted In Living in Tech
Oracle CEO Larry Ellison has his priorities straight: Rather than give a keynote at Oracle’s customer conference OpenWorld on Tuesday, and also rather than participate in a quarterly conference call with analysts, Larry was watching his America’s Cup yachting team. Examining many years of tech conference keynotes, there are no reports of CEO’s bailing on their own speeches for extra-curricular activities, so Ellison’s dedication to sport over company may represent a first. While it’s not known whether Ellison took a… continue…

Apple’s Perils of Innovation

Posted In iOS, Living in Tech
As expected, Apple recently announced two new iPhones — the lower cost iPhone 5C and a follow-on to the iPhone 5 named the iPhone 5S. In a previous entry, I said that the new iPhone would not be named the iPhone 5S. I was wrong. The iPhone 5S does make sense in that the iPhone 3GS followed the iPhone 3G, and iPhone 4S followed the iPhone 4. But I didn’t think Apple would use the “S” suffix this time, since… continue…