Tag Archive for ‘p2p’

mobile madness

A Japanese primate researcher announced the other day that mobile phones are turning Japanese youth into apes. Or at least that’s the sensational way to put it.

“Parents let their kids go out because they think they’re only a phone call away. And even if the kid doesn’t come home, parents don’t call them because they believe the child’s mobile phone offers them an unbreakable link…”

What does this have to do with apes? These liberated kids are evidently losing a sense of home, and aren’t distinguishing between private and public space. Chimps in the wild also tend to walk around in groups, eat wherever they get hungry, and rest wherever and whenever. I don’t think this phenomena is strictly Japanese. I often see tribes of kids walking around the town in which I live. They hang out at the local cafe, ice cream shop, and sometimes, just sometimes, the library. One thing that so fascinating about their behavior when they’re in the library is that they often tell us what they want out of a library. They come in packs, and they come for a space in which to collaborate. Group work is huge. Use of our resources is secondary. If kids act this way in this area, they very well may act this way in your area. We all have the task of thinking how we can get these people into the library more often.

This article is interesting for what it says, but it is also interesting because it doesn’t even say what these kids are doing with their phones. We know that texting, IM, and ringtones, let alone voice communication, have had a huge impact on people’s behavior, but phones are going to get even more interesting .

Take for instance Sprint/Nextel’s new walkie-talkie picture sending service. It combines the ultra-annoying bleeping and blooping instant talk found on some phones, and picture sharing on phones. It allows users to send cameraphone pics instantly, look at them simultaneously, and discuss them all the while. This real-time interaction and collaboration seems really web-like to me, which is great to see in a portable device. This, however, has the advantage that it can be used anywhere.

Nokia has developed a peer-to-peer network for mobile phones, and they are looking to develop support for the sharing of mp3 files. This is another activity leaving the desktop and coming to the little computers we carry around.

Speaking of mp3s, Japan’s largest cell phone provider, DoCoMo, is buying Tower Records. I wonder how long it will be until we see direct to cell phone downloading from the iTunes Music Store.

A bit closer to home we see Google Local for Mobile which is “downloadable application that lets you view maps and satellite imagery, find local businesses, and get driving directions on your phone.” In English, this means, Google Local for Mobile is “the first step in getting location-based advertising on your phone.” Pondering primate reminds us that they’ve been keeping track of all the text messages sent to GOOGL and are compiling a database to see what people search for on their phones. “Google knows what services were used most and where they were requested.”

Technology like this makes the development of ubiqutous computing easy to imagine.


living without the music industry

Here’s a 6 point article about how to not support an industry that breaks your equipment and over charges you. As I was reading it I was hoping that one of the tips would be to use the library.

It wasn’t included, but the second comment added a #7 that made me happy: Borrow CDs from the library and load on your computer.

I’m happy to get people using the library for any reason.


p2p downloading is your friend

Thursday, I get to defend p2p downloading at a (semi) local community college. Also scheduled to talk is a musician, a network admin, and I believe an ethics professor. Should be a great mix!

I can’t decide if I want to call the talk “The Devil Made Me Do It” or “Home Taping is Killing Music” but either way it is here for you to look at.

In the spirit of sharing, the first person to find the reference to a band in my CSS file will get a secret link from which to download a few of my favorite songs of the week!


that was quick

The 5th generation iPod, the one that plays video, was released only a few days back. However, there is already a decent amount of (pre-converted to the appropriate file type) content available via BitTorrent. It won’t be long before I can get the Daily Show not only downloaded automatically to my desktop, but sent straight into a video iPod. This is one step closer to the failure of content providers’ current business model failing.

If you’re wondering how, azureus is a BitTorrent client that supports RSS Feed Scanner which reads RSS feeds from torrent trackers such as torrent spy


i hear no evil

Last evening I was looking through an audiobook hub of a p2p file sharing network. Yes, purely for academic purposes. As I logged on I read the introductory notes written by the hub moderators. There were the usual audiobook requests, swaps announced, but I noticed something vastly more interesting. The nefarious users of the audiobook hub have organized an online book discussion*. Libraries take note. There is a market for online book discussions. Online book discussions make sense for people who use audiobooks. Often people who use audiobooks are busy individuals, so being able to participate in a discussion without having to travel anywhere special might be appealing to them.

It must be said however, that years ago the library at which I worked organized an email book discussion with the library’s sister library Down Under. Perhaps it was a lack of promotion, but the project was dud. If I had to blame something, it would be email. Does anyone enjoy using email? It might solve the problem of distance, but it doesn’t take the best part of conversations into account: the fact that they are in real time.

If anyone has library experience with online book discussions, I’d like to hear about it!.

*The book is The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time by Mark Haddon which I happen to have read. If the timing works out, I’m going to participate so I can see how it compares to other book discussions.