Water as Fuel : The Coming Hydrogen Revolution?

Florida company Hydrogen Technologies seems to have perfected electrolysis as a means to fuel cars.

Spokesman Danny Klein says his Ford Escort powered on the new fuel called Aquagen halves his gasoline costs.

The machine that makes Aquagen runs voltage through water creating gas that is then cooled and dried in another compartment and then burned as fuel. Apparently, the hydrogen and oxygen stay connected in the process harnessing the atomic power of hydrogen with the chemical stability of water.

Klein says the water molecule is “restructured” when a tremendous amount of energy is mixed with a catalyst.

He adds the technology isn’t new. Others have tried it, but they used so much electricity that their inventions never took off. But managers at Klein’s company think they have improved, maybe even perfected the process.

“We estimate it costs around $0.70 per hour to generate, and it produces 1,500 liters of aquagen per hour.”

Steve Lusko works for the company, and says since this story first aired they have received calls from technology officers of General Dynamics, Lockheed Martin and “the biggest industrial companies in the country.”

Aquagen actually started out as project to create a water-based welding torch. As seen in the CNN clip, the Aquagen-fueled torch heats to a melting point of whatever it touches. It can burn a hole through charcoal, slice steel, and turn a brass ball to liquid. It also reacts to gasoline, helping run an engine before turning back to water.

Seems far-fetched? Too good to be true? Will this finally end our reliance on oil? Is this the dawning of the age of Aquarius?

Read more here.

Geeks’ take-down of greedy execs

Geeks fixing prob view CFO’s emails and discover company about to hawked to highest bidder and all staff to be laid off without compensation.

From Security Investigator blog:

“Dear Chief,

Love the case files that you publish. While I am not much of a writer, I wanted to share the following experience I had at a tech startup.

We were a small tech startup with approximately 50 employees. We were all handpicked for our special skills and we bonded together quite nicely. When it became apparent that external and much larger companies were interested in our technology, we started taking venture capital money to grow and we became a ‘grow and sell’ company. I and every other employee had no ownership in the company, so we were less than elated at this news.

Our CFO was your typical suit a$$hole. He treated everyone around him like they were beneath him, dressed in thousand dollar suits and drove a Porsche (and resembled a certain boss on ‘Office Space’ – no kidding!).

I had no idea though just how much of an a$$hole this guy was until I had to assist our mail server administrator one night at the office.

Our mail server was a really fast linux box running Postfix. For whatever reason, our mail storage partition had completely filled to capacity and Postfix was returning errors to every incoming mail message.

The mail server administrator thought he had been DOS’d, so he wanted me nearby in the event that an investigation was warranted. He had no idea what we were about to find.

We quickly determined that the mail partition was full. A quick ‘du’ command revealed that one particular user was at fault for the missing disk space: the CFO.

He had tried several times to send out a very large joke video file that was becoming trapped by our anti-virus solution….”


Newstagging 2.0

Adrian Holovaty points to how tagging news stories on the web can lead us closer to the Semantic Web.

“…one thing that’s always bothered me is that the bread-and-butter of my chosen field, journalism, is relentlessly unstructured. The primary product of journalists — the news story — is just a giant blob of text.

“A news story cannot be broken down into easily defined, consistent pieces. It doesn’t have facts in predictable places.”

He suggests several tags:
1.: for different levels of profanity for different websites or let the user decide his/her level of tolerance.
2. : Saying something happened Tuesday or today doesn’t make sense on the web unless you put a date to it.


Giants awaken to Internet

Summer Redstone, executive chairman of split entities Viacom and CBS, sees growth in Internet ventures. Ho hum.

From Reuters:

“We see great opportunities with the Internet. We may have been slow to begin with for reasons I don’t want to go into right now, but we are moving very fast now, as you know. Viacom recently bought NeoPets.com, it’s bought iFilm and of course (video game chat service) Xfire, which I think will be explosive in its growth,” Redstone said. “So we’re on the case. Each company is on the case.”

MTV and Microsoft Corp are j oining forces to compete against Apple Computer Inc’s market-dominating iTunes music download service, Redstone said.

“It’s not (compatible with Apple) and I see some significant advantages (to that)… the fact that this (music download service) appears on every Microsoft Windows makes it so powerful that it will be a very, very strong competitor,” he said.

Viacom, owner of MTV, Comedy Central and Nickelodeon, split with CBS at the end of last year, separating its faster growing cable networks and newly purchased DreamWorks movie studio from the slower growing television broadcasting and radio operations.

Redstone admitted that its movie unit Paramount had some “rough times recently” but a resurgence was taking place with the injection of DreamWorks. He claimed CBS’s outdoor business, such as billboards, was going very strongly and that TV was doing extremely well.

Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp had paid more for teen Web site myspace.com than Viacom would have been willing, he said.


Wrong Guy on BBC

Guy Gomo, a cab driver business studies graduate, from the Congo, waiting to be interviewed for a job at the BBC, suddenly finds himself in front of the camera to discuss the Apple-versus-Apple court decision.

Turns out they mistook him for Newswireless.net editor Guy Kewney. Watch the video on Youtube or the Mail on Sunday.
[via Boing Boing and Itjournoasia.com]


Holovaty’s Missouri J-school speech

Adrian Holovaty tells it like it is:

Graduates, the fire should be burning under each and every one of you. You should be yearning — aching — to bring this industry into a new age. Your generation — our generation — is going to be the one to do it.

You’re going to be the people breaking the rules. You’re going to be the people inventing new ones. You’ll be the person who says, “Hey, let’s try this new way of getting our journalism out to the public.” You’ll be the PR person who says, “Let’s try this new way of public relations that takes advantage of the Internet.” You’ll be the photographer who says, “Wow, quite a few amateur photographers are posting their photos online. Let’s try to incorporate that into our journalism somehow.”

You’ll be the person who asks, “Why are we doing things the way they are?”, and when the top editor says, “Because that’s the way they’ve always been done,” you’ll openly question that. “Because we’ve always done it that way” doesn’t cut it. “Because we’ve always done it that way” is blatantly unacceptable, blatantly lazy, and you need to call that out.

The pressure’s on. :)


What readers want

In The Perfect News Site, 2016 Dave Pettit suggests readers want more context, new ways to filter news, fewer ads and more telegenic reporters.

WSJ.com asked its readers to describe their perfect site in 2016.

Here’s a sampling:

1. “I would like to receive only news that is news to me, not news that I have already read or heard.”

2. “Some days I think we were all blessed when we had [just] an evening newspaper and the 6:30 network news.”

3. As site that is able “to filter, prioritize and effectively size the amount of news to my needs. I may want to know that a shooting has occurred in Lower Phoenix, but not want the 20 different eyewitness statements.”

4. The perfect news site “…will literally be in the palm of our hand” The next generation would have a hard drive, a bigger screen and a better “input device.”

5. News sites will morph into directories of information: “Instead of clicking on pages, there will be a hierarchy of news by section (world, national, regional, business, sports, lifestyle)”

6. “Instead of having to duplicate my holdings all over the Web so I can get customized news from various sources, I would login to my secure [brokerage] account and there I would find, alongside my portfolio, links to WSJ news and articles.”

7. The perfect site would be “completely voice-activated” site.

8. “Ads take up screen real estate and are distracting and annoying.” Sites should offer subscriptions to special advertising-free versions of their coverage – or versions with just tiny ads at the bottom of each page.

9. Another reader made the point that sites should choose one revenue stream and stick to it. His point: The perfect news site wouldn’t sell ads, require subscription fees and charge for extra features, such as archived articles.

10.”Editors will be a thing of the past. Instead, users will vote content to the front page. Fact checkers will be the only staff left as they verify and comment on the information posted be the community of readers. In the next decade the broadcaster and the reader will merge into one.”

11.”Instead of traditional news bureaus, a sophisticated network of freelancers, some with no journalistic experience, will act as correspondents, filing stories from computers inside their homes from around the world. The news will be more in depth, and news will be covered much faster.”

12. “When you report quarterly profits for a corporation (Exxon, for example) that are unusually large, allow me to see a ‘popup’ of the profits for the last eight quarters so I can understand what is large.”

13. “Your reporters…find out all sorts of things when writing an article or cover a business, but these don’t always fit into the form of a news article. They should be dumped into an encyclopedia.”

14. “I see a large selection of live streaming video, for example, being offered to you once you log in based on your interests. Codes embedded in the video will allow search engines to find video on warehouse fires, for example, and push them to you.”

15.”The perfect Web site will be a mix of print news, video and audio news. News Web sites will also compete with 24-hour cable news and major networks by offering prime-time news programming on the Web.”

16.”By 2016 we will doubtless see more ‘pretty faces’ in the pressroom than we do today. I predict that Dow Jones & Co. will be adding cosmetic surgery to the roster of employee benefits.”


The second wave reaching tsunami proportions

The numbers are in. According to this sketchy and seemingly dated piece on FT.com:

In the first quarter of the year, US venture capitalists invested US$396m in the media and entertainment sector, 80 per cent more than in the previous quarter and the biggest amount for four years, industry data shows.

Analysis by PricewaterhouseCoopers and the National Venture Capital Association showed about half the media investments were in companies focused on delivery content via the internet.

US venture capital firms raised US$4.26bn in the first quarter of 2006, 69 per cent more than was raised last year, according to Dow Jones VentureOne.

“We get three or four calls per week from people looking to invest,” said Thomas McInerney, founder and chief executive of Guba, a site for viewing user-generated content set up in 1998. “These investors are going through the top 2,000 companies in the Alexa rankings [of web site usage] and all of these seem to be getting a steady stream of phone calls.”

Bolt, also a site aimed at user-generated content, is in the process of raising another round of venture capital, and executives there have found it easier than in previous years. “There has been a great deal of interest,” said Aaron Cohen, Bolt’s chief executive. “It’s a popular category.”

The realisation that the internet is changing the media business has prompted traditional media companies to develop digital strategies. Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp has been the most aggressive, spending $1.5bn on acquisitions, including $580m to acquire MySpace.com last year.

Just last week, two small start-ups were bought, including Ksolo, which allows karaoke fans to create and share songs.

Networking events and conferences in Silicon Valley are now swamped with scouts. “From the media companies, News Corp is the one that is everywhere,” said a Silicon Valley executive. “At even the smallest gathering, Fox Interactive people are there checking companies out.”


Note that venture caps are all in denial about the eventual bubble.

Microsoft unveils Google-killer

It was too lucrative a market to pass up. Yahoo and Google, among other pureplay Internet players made US$9 billion last year(WAN)from online advertising, taking 53 percent of the pie. So why shouldn’t the biggest, greediest software company in the world get some of that action.

Microsoft launched adCenter earlier in Singapore and France, and is now bringing it home.

Asked about Google, Gates replies he aims to “keep them honest”. Which begs the question: What is Google lying about?


Chinese blogger tops Technorati

The blog of Xu Jinglei, a popular Chinese actress/director has come out tops in blogging directory Technorati’s most popular ranking, after some changes in the indice accommodated Asian blogs.

Xu’s blog has displaced Boing Boing as its top ranking blog.

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