Should cable companies build smart TVs? (or, how do cable companies avoid the fate of telcos?)

First, there was Ma Bell. Then, deregulation of the phone company happened in the U.S. and phone calls went from being very expensive to very cheap (my dad ran a small business in the 1980s, and telephone bills could often be thousands of dollars — in 1980s dollars!). Then came the Internet, and ISPs (think … Continue reading “Should cable companies build smart TVs? (or, how do cable companies avoid the fate of telcos?)”

Apple is building a search engine?

The whole business-news world was awash with speculation this week that Apple is building its own search engine (The Telegraph ($/2), Financial Times ($), Forbes, Forbes again, c|net, etc…). These sites all point out that Google is under anti-trust scrutiny, and part of that is the purported $8–12 billion that Google pays Apple to be the default search engine on Apple devices; and … Continue reading “Apple is building a search engine?”

Pan-European Cloud

Remember way back in February — before even COVID — when I wrote about this weird ideathe EU had about a “single data market”? Well, of all the possible ways they could have pursued this, it looks like they picked the dumbest of the dumb. Here are some tidbits. The Internal Market Commissioner for the EU, … Continue reading “Pan-European Cloud”

Good and bad M&A

It appears that Oracle has won the bid to purchase TikTok’s US operations. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ Anyone who knows anything about Oracle has to seriously wonder what this is going to do. Sure, Oracle desperately needs to enter new markets, but … TikTok? At the other end of the spectrum, NVIDIA is acquiring ARM. Now, that deal makes a lot … Continue reading “Good and bad M&A”

The Rise of No Code

Innovation, perhaps tautologically, comes from the cutting edge. In the world of cars, we owe disc brakes, dual overhead cams, and MacPerson struts (to name just a few) to car racing. This is the world I was discussing at the beginning of the month, when I said we need a lot more and better computer scientists … Continue reading “The Rise of No Code”

Intel is getting leap-frogged

In 1965 Gordon Moore famously predicted that the number of components on an integrated circuit (a computer “chip”) would double every year — Moore’s Law. This largely turned out to be true, but for a long time, we’ve been predicting that we’re reaching the end of it, largely because of laws of physics. To fit … Continue reading “Intel is getting leap-frogged”

TikTok and China

Here we are, yet again, back at Newsletter #14, wherein I brought up some of the problems with TikTok being controlled by the Chinese, and statements by the new CEO (who is an American), who asserts that they don’t send US user data to Chinese authorities, and moreover that they’d refuse if it were demanded. Things … Continue reading “TikTok and China”

George Soros to force RFID chips on everyone (or, when truth is stranger than fiction)

Some of the craziest conspiracy theories out there involve George Soros / Bill Gates / [random rich person] doing something to force / sneak embedded RFID chips into everyone. The natural response of any moderately educated and moderately sane person is to discard this nonsense out of hand. OK. Fair enough. So why has the … Continue reading “George Soros to force RFID chips on everyone (or, when truth is stranger than fiction)”