The backwards music business

According to a story in today’s Financial Times, music companies are upset because, get this, customers are flocking to buy legal digital downloads. For several years, the record companies have complained about unauthorized peer-to-peer file sharing. Now, they are finally generating significant revenues from users paying to receive their songs over the Net. And the labels’ response is to complain that prices must be set too low. There were other, ...

Guess Who's Coming to Supernova, Part I

This year’s Supernova is really starting to come together. Registration is now open, so sign up, y’all! As usual, we’ve got some wonderful people speaking. Here’s an introduction to a few of them; I’ll post updates periodically in the future. The speakers page on our Website has a longer list of confirmed participants.

Today's fun stats

Some fun facts from the two keynotes I attended at the Wharton Technology Conference today: Lou D’Ambrosio of Avaya and Jeff Weiner of Yahoo! In 1998, the average Web search query was 1.2 words long; in 2004 was twice as long (2.5 words). Weiner (who heads up the search business at Yahoo!) made an insightful connection between this stat and the Long Tail phenomenon. Longer queries means more permutations. More ...

Fun with information visualization

Who would have thought a historical baby-name database could be so compelling?

Length isn't Everything

The Harvard Law Review (where I served as an editor some ten years ago) is leading an effort to prune back the excessive length of law review articles. Eleven of the top journals have

Photos and Social Networks

Very cool visualizations of relationships among photo-sharing users at FlickrLand.

Billions and Billions served

14.2 billion video streams sent over the Net in 2004, a 79% increase over 2003, according to AccuStream iMedia. (via IT Facts) That doesn’t include the vast amount of P2P video downloads through BitTorrent and similar services. The videonet is coming faster than we think.

Why the Broadcast Flag Matters

Susan Crawford explains why this week’s oral argument concerning the FCC’s broadcast flag ruling is important to the future of the Net.

Philly WiFi: The Gloves Come Off

It has been interesting to watch the debate progress over the city of Philadelphia’s plan to create a city-wide outdoor public WiFi network. The project generated a lot of attention when first announced. At that time, Verizon and Comcast didn’t have much to say about it. Then word leaked out that a bill in the Pennsylvania legislature would prohibit Philadelphia and other cities from engaging in such projects. (After a ...

Why We Need Network Neutrality

Vonage, the leading independent US VOIP provider, has complained to the FCC that a broadband access provider is blocking the ports it uses to provide service. I and others have been raising concerns for some time that broadband platform owners will use their control of the physical and logical layers of the network to preclude innovation and competition at higher layers. We’ve been told this is a fantasy, and that ...