How Much Is Your iPhone App?

Is there price discrimination among iPhone apps that translate between languages?

The Next Financial Crisis: Virtual Banks

By now, the financial woes of Lehman, Bear Stearns, Washington Mutual, and the many other troubled banks is old news.

But we may need to start preparing for another round of bank failures ... in the virtual world.

If indeed it happens, a character named Ricdic will likely be to blame. Ricdic is part of Eve Online, which I have never heard of, but according to this BBC news report "has about 300,000 players all of whom inhabit the same online universe. The game revolves around trade, mining asteroids, and the efforts of different player-controlled corporations to take control of swathes of virtual space."

LoJack for iPhones

A while back we wrote about Adeona, a free tracking program that could help police locate and recover a stolen laptop. As a bonus, we figured, thieves might be less inclined to steal any laptop, since every laptop they stole could potentially lead police to their doors. Enter Find My iPhone, a new service by Apple that does the same thing for your iPhone. After losing his phone in Chicago, one man recently tracked his phone down personally and confronted the thief, who, shocked at having been found, handed it back with a handshake.

Precision Hacking

Take a look at the final vote tally in Time magazine's online poll of the most influential people.

It doesn't take long to come to the conclusion that things didn't turn out quite as one would expect; I'd never even heard of a handful of the folks who ended up near the top of the list, including the winner, Moot, who both has way more votes than anyone else and a much higher average rating.

How Is a Computer Worm Like a Pack of Cigarettes?

You’ve probably already forgotten about Conficker, the computer worm, since it declined to wreak havoc as feared on April 1. Rest assured, Conficker has not forgotten about you. It’s currently operating on millions of computers around the world, and it’s still spreading and changing. Nobody knows what it will do next. As Bruce Schneier points […]

Ladies and Gentlemen, The Internet Sings

This may sound like a chorus of goblins, but it’s really the sound of the internet — of two thousand people, each paid to make just one tone, synthesized into a rendition of the song “Daisy Bell.” Why this song? When scientists used a computer to synthesize music for the first time, in 1962, they […]

Is It Time to Rename "Digital Piracy"?

In light of the recent spate of Somali pirate attacks (here's one interesting long view, and here's another), I wonder if it's time to start calling "digital piracy" something else.

The Cost of Shortening Your Link

| On the one hand, URL shorteners are handy tools that shrink long, clumsy internet addresses into cute linklets that can fit into a Twitter message. On the other hand, writes Joshua Schachter, they needlessly slow internet traffic, pose a security risk, and can deprive site owners of valuable visitor information or even revenue. Shorteners […]

Vying for "Virtual Sex"

| A California pornography company that owns the trademark Virtual Sex lost its bid to take over ownership of the domain name from another company. The World Intellectual Property Organization ruled that Network Telephone Services, the current owner of the domain, “offered all the appropriate merchandise to match its namesake.” Might “Freakonomics” one day […]

Will Your Internet Addiction Be Covered by Insurance?

| It’s been a year since the American Journal of Psychiatry tried to have the internet committed — O.K., well, since it published an editorial arguing for the classification of internet addiction as a certifiable mental illness. The editorial isn’t clear about what exactly constitutes “excessive” internet use, but it points to a number of […]