GeekSpeak for 2011-10-01

Kindles and Other Stuff

The new Amazon Kindles and other non-related news items. All of this while Lyle, Ben, and Miles take your live calls and comments.

Spotify defends Facebook sign-up requirement

Spotify has defended its link-up with Facebook, which means new users must have an account with the social network in order to join the music service.

The move to force music lovers to link to a Facebook account has come under fire from users and industry insiders, but Spotify boss Daniel Ek has claimed the decision was intended to make signing up easier.

“About Facebook registrations. We want to remove barriers to sign-up and create a more seamless experience,” Ek said on his Twitter account. “We think our users are social.”

I’d be happier if Spotify didn’t deem Facebook a ‘passport’

However, the backlash may spark an early rethink, with Ek candidly pointing out that: “We’ll try lots of things, and probably screw up from time to time, but we value feedback and will make changes based on it.”

Ek had described a Facebook as a “virtual passport”, sparking complaints from people who have chosen to live without an account.

Chrome poised to take No. 2 browser spot from Firefox

As of Wednesday, Chrome’s global average user share for September was 23.6%, while Firefox’s stood at 26.8%. IE, meanwhile, was at 41.7%.

The climb of Chrome during 2011 has been astonishing: It has gained eight percentage point since January 2011, representing a 50% increase.

$199 Amazon Kindle Fire

A lot of the information revealed during the official presentation has already been expected by those who have been reading up on tech blogs. For instance, the Kindle Fire tablet has a 7-inch screen, free data storage over the Internet and a new browser — Amazon Silk.

Kindle Fire weighs 14.6oz, and has the capacity for 100,000 movies, 17m songs, and as many magazines as one could read.  

'Sesame Street' Now Focuses on Math, Science, Tech

This season of “Sesame Street,” which premiered today, has added a few new things to its usual mix of song, dance and educational lessons.

In its 42nd season, the preschool educational series is tackling math, science, technology and engineering — all problem areas for America’s students — in hopes of helping kids measure up.

Google Mowing with Goats

“Instead of using noisy mowers that run on gasoline and pollute the air, we’ve rented some goats from California Grazing to do the job for us (we’re not ‘kidding’).”

Mercury not like other planets MESSENGER finds

“Only six months into its Mercury orbit, the tiny MESSENGER spacecraft has shown scientists that Mercury doesn’t conform to theory. Its surface material composition differs in important ways from both those of the other terrestrial planets and expectations prior to the MESSENGER mission, calling into question current theories for Mercury’s formation.”

Science Manual for Judges Updated

“A new guidebook for judges and legal professionals, the Reference Manual on Scientific Evidence, became available Wednesday, replacing the previous edition published in 2000.”

Introduction to Arduino | Jody Culkin

A Comic Introduction To Arduino by Judy Culkin.