Another day, another Tech Digest CES 2010 round-up. Fancy Tweeting hands-free in your car or controlling your PC by breathing? Check today's top stories below and find out how. Twitter coming to Ford cars The digital equivalent of drink-driving? Motorola…
With the tech world all a-twitter about, er… Twitter, and having little sexy accidents when talking about Spotify, it’s sometimes easy to forget about Facebook. In reality, Facebook is only a couple of years older than both Twitter and Spotify, and there’s still people out there who say things like “I don’t get all this Facebook malarky”.
Let’s start with the numbers. Facebook recently hit 175 million active users – if it were a country it’d be the 6th most populous in the world, between Brazil and Pakistan. More than 3 billion minutes are spent on the site every day – enough time to watch the extended edition of the Lord of the Rings trilogy 4.3 million times. Or read “War and Peace” 35,000 times.
Don’t forget that Facebook popularized the app store concept way before Apple, too. Sure, most Facebook apps are a load of old rubbish and their integration was an unmitigated disaster for the user experience (hence why they’ve mostly disappeared) but most iPhone apps are crap too. Seriously, how long does iFart sit on your phone before you delete it?
Despite being blamed for wanton destruction, Facebook even saves lives! News reached us this morning of a kid who was saved from a suicide attempt by a friend over Facebook chat. The power of having all you friends at your fingertips can stop people from doing silly things, and can rescue them when they do silly things.
So don’t forget about Facebook. Businesses – If you’re developing an Android app, stop and think – why not port this to Facebook, too? If you’re thinking of starting an ad campaign on Twitter or Spotify, remember Facebook’s userbase and think about using Facebook’s powerful ad tools to reach its bazillions of users. It’s not old hat.
The rest of you – go check in on your Facebook friends. Maybe you haven’t seen them since primary school, but that doesn’t mean you have nothing in common – on the contrary, you might have more than ever in common. Go poke that girl you ‘fancied’ when you were 13. She might even poke you back. The rest of the world is a little slower than you, mister early-adopter. Don’t forget about them.
Here’s a handy link. Click it, and spend half an hour remembering the web two years ago. You might even like it more: Facebook.
Whilst those of us in the tech world love everything shiny, perfect and aesthetically pleasing, there’s something to be said about furnishings based on butt-ugly components from the recent past. Take these lamps handmade with galvanised iron, complete with authentic rust, dents from the tools used to create them and an angular retro charm.
Tetris, a perennial favourite among puzzle games, has been remade in HD for a modern audience. “Oh no!”, you cry, “they’ve only gone and done a Phantom Menace on it!” – but fear not, for this is just as pure as the original. All they’ve done is increase the resolution. Massively.
So much so, that it now takes a good seven or eight minutes to make a line, and the record for even losing is somewhere around six minutes. Can you lose quicker than that? Our comments section is broken, so send us a tweet instead. @techdigest is what you’re after.
If, like me, you get slightly weepy-eyed thinking about computers from 1986, then have I got a link for you. PC Plus magazine has put up its first issue ever online for you to flick through at your leisure.
There’s discussion of Word Processors, printers reviewed and tested, and in the ads at the back is a computer with an 8MHz motherboard, monochrome monitor, serial port, and floppy drive for £400.
Most intriguingly of all, in the back is a review of a game called “Leather Goddesses of Phobos” that comes in three modes – “Tame”, “Suggestive” and “Lewd”, and is accompanied in the box by a pair of 3D glasses and a scratch and sniff card(!). The conclusion? “Should keep you busy for months”.
Go check it out and remind yourself of the days when a help section offered advice on creating batch files, and the handy hint: “One thing to avoid at all costs is typing “DEL ” at the command prompt”. Brilliant.
Yesterday, we had floppy disk posters, before Christmas we had floppy disk gift tags, today we’ve got floppy disk CD-Rs. Evidently the humble 3.5″ floppy, subject of much mockery in the school playground, is now the coolest kid on the block.
Sure, they only hold 200MB of data (though that’s 13789% more than the originals) and they’re a little on the expensive side – at $10 (£7) a CD, but you can’t put a price on retro-cool, right? Right? What do you mean “28p and a blackjack”?
Just looking at this keychain makes me misty-eyed remembering days spent playing Super Mario and Tetris until it was time to watch Thundercats, Transformers and Voltron. Clearly made for us 80s kids, this nostalgic wonder features miniature versions of the console, a game cartridge and the NES controller.
Display your gaming history and inspire do-you-remember’s with mates you used to trash in Street Fighter with this officially-licensed keyring for only $5.99.
This has to be the ultimate retro display watch. A homage to Nixie tubes(it even uses vintage tubes from 1968), the unique timepieces were produced in a limited run of 25, which, even at $495, all sold out. OK, you might not be able to actually wear it, but it is undeniably impressive.