Thursday, September 30, 2010

MapQuest Launches Interactive Atlas

MapQuest, in its drive to get on people’s radars again, is launching an interactive atlas that combines MapQuest maps with an array of geographic, cultural and climate data.
MapQuest Atlas sports a very simple interface. Users can drill down into data on every country in the world. Much of the information in the atlas comes from the CIA’s World Factbook rather than from sources such as Wikipedia. By clicking on a country on the map, you will be able to learn its capital, temperature and current time.
A second click takes you deeper, though, into a nation’s geography, culture, government, economy and military. Most of these facts are basic information that’s easily discoverable through the World Factbook’s web app or Wikipedia, but it’s nice to have another easy-to-use web tool that brings it all together. In addition to information on the different nations of the world, MapQuest Atlas also displays information on time zones, world climate, continents and oceans. There’s also a “Compare Countries” feature, which places the geographic, political and social data of any two nations side-by-side.
MapQuest’s Atlas is designed for the average Internet user, which means it’s intended to be inherently simple. It’s nothing groundbreaking like Google Earth, but we can see a lot of kids with insatiable thirst for knowledge browsing this thing all day. MapQuest, a subsidiary of AOL, recently launched a complete redesign with new features and an overhauled interface.
What do you think of MapQuest Atlas? Is it something you might use in the future?

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Twitter Now Getting More Traffic Then Myspace

Twitter’s number of monthly unique visitors finally surpassed that of MySpace in August. Though it ranked third among social networking sites, Twitter ranked #50 in the list of top 50 properties overall. The numbers were crunched by the marketing research firm comScore.
Twitter’s lead over MySpace was marginal — 96 million versus 95 million — but the trend over time paints a prettier picture of the microblogging service. Between August 2009 and August 2010, Twitter grew 76% while MySpace dropped 17%.
It’s apples and oranges, though. Twitter is now a social publishing and news discussion platform more than anything, and MySpace is attempting to position itself as a destination for young people to discover new music, movies and games. Both appeal to brands that want to reach new people, but they’re very different tools for very different kinds of brands.
Both sites look quite small next to Facebook, which reached 598 million monthly uniques in the same month. It grew 54% over the past year. The second most popular social network, Windows Live, managed 140 million uniques, putting it closer to Twitter than to Facebook.
Twitter has been moving quickly to capitalize on this growth. First it announced a new version of the front page that will make it easier to access photos, videos and other information without using other websites or programs. Many of Twitter’s users rarely visit the website at all; they instead use desktop software or third-party interfaces on other websites to access their tweets. For that reason, Twitter’s actual reach might be higher than the numbers from comScore imply. A revamped website could lead people to use Twitter.cominstead of whatever they’re using right now however, increasing the number of unique visitors the site receives now and in the future.
Twitter already cashed in on its numerous users with Promoted Tweets, and now it will reach out to businesses with the “Promoted Accounts” system, which allows companies to buy visibility among their target market’s “Who to Follow” suggestions.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Evolution of the Apple Mouse!

Apple’s product design is legendary in the industry for innovation, inspiration and imagination, but it’s often the more glamorous products such as the MacBooks, iPhones andiPods that get all the attention.
With this in mind, we thought we’d take a look at Apple’s input device — the humble mouse — to see how the design has changed from way back in the early 80s right up to today.
The evolution of the Apple mouse makes for an interesting design journey that includes the loss of its tail, moving from a single button to touch, and of course going from beige to multi-colored and back to a monotone.
Click through the gallery below to journey through the mouse’s history and let us know any memories you have (fond or not!) of any of the devices in the comments.

Pirate Bay Appeal Begins Thursday

The four men behind The Pirate Bay will go to court Tuesday to appeal their sentence of one year in jail and $905,000 each in fines. Eight trial days will occur before October 15.
It’s been a rough ride for the surprisingly resilient BitTorrent website, which shut down its tracker 10 months ago but remained operational in a bare-bones sort of way. The advocacy organization that founded the site closed its doors in June.
In April, Gottfrid Svartholm, Fredrik Neij, Carl Lundstrom and Peter Sunde were found guilty of assisting in making illegal downloads of copyrighted content possible. All four pleaded not guilty and appealed the ruling, essentially claiming that they weren’t responsible for how people they had never met used their technology.
As TorrentFreak notes, this appeal is light on flair or publicity, unlike the original case. The first case was a media frenzy. Its developments were prominently featured all over Twitter, tech blogs and even mainstream media. This time, not even The Pirate Bay, which is known for mocking its enemies, has acknowledged that the appeal is currently taking place.
We’ll know the result of the appeal in a couple weeks, but if the defendants choose not to resume their social media blitz, you might have to wait for the upcoming documentary about The Pirate Bay to see the inside story.
So what does everyone think about this?

Monday, September 27, 2010

Happy Birthday Google!

It’s Google’s 12th birthday today, and Google’s regular logo has been replaced by an image of a cake, created by the American painter Wayne Thiebaud.
Thiebaud is famous for his paintings of cakes and other everyday objects, and has been associated with the Pop art movement.
As far as Google’s birthday is concerned, today’s logo change solidifies the notion that Google’s birthday is, indeed, September 27. Google had previously been unclear about the exact date, sometimes celebrating on September 7, although the domain was registered on September 15, 1997.
Although 12 years is a lot in the world of IT technology, the fact that a company has grown so huge in this time frame never fails to astound us. Happy birthday, Google!

Friday, September 24, 2010

HTC Android Tablet

This thing looks to be pretty amazing.

Here is the upcoming Android based HTC tablet. This new HTC android tablet will be manufactured by Pegatron. This new hTC android tablet will be a strong competor for the Apple's iPad. Recently the specification and price details of the new HTC android tablet is announced and as per the initial reports, it will be designed based on the nVidia Tera 2 platform.

HTC Android tablet comes powered with 2GB ROM, 32GB solid state drive(SSD) and it sports a 1280 x 720 pixels touchscreen display with multitouch support. Other features of the upcoming HTC android tablet includes Wi-Fi, GPS, Bluetooth etc. It comes with support to Chrome Web applications and Android Market from Google.

The price of the HTC android tabler is expected to be about US$789.75.