Opera Unite – eliminating the need for web servers


Norwegian web expert Opera has today announced the release of its Opera Unite service that promises to shake up the old “client-server computing model of the web”.

Opera Unite works by turning a computer into both a client and a server – effectively removing the need for a third party server to host data.

What this means for the average web user is that serving and accessing data should become much easier. A user simply selects folders on their PC that they wish to share. These folders will then accessible via web browsers at a designated web address. Opera have stated that the service should work with any modern web browser.

Apart from standard file sharing, Opera Unite also allows the creation of photo galleries complete with thumbnails and also allows users to play any mp3 stored in a shared folder within its built in media player. More savvy users can also host entire websites on their PCs should they wish to. There’s also a social networking aspect to the service.

If you’re still not getting the gist of it, here’s a little scenario to illustrate its potential:

Johnny goes on holiday to Alaska – he wants to see the grizzly bears. He takes his netbook with him, which only has an 8GB SSD. Johnny has planned ahead though and has set up his desktop back home to share his mp3s. He can now access all of these via his netbook from anywhere with a web connection. He can also save the photos of his trip on his netbook on a daily basis and share them with his friends and family back home without needed to upload to a hosting site like flickr.

Opera Unite is available with special versions of Opera 10, which itself is a pretty good web browser.

If you still don’t quite get it, maybe this video will help. (Warning: video contains dramatic American voice over and mood-setting music).

YouTube testing real-time chat


Video-sharing site YouTube has been increasing the ‘social network’ aspects of the site gradually over the years, but it’s just taken a big step towards that by the announcement that it’s testing a social chat layer over videos.

Users will be able to talk to their friends while watching videos, and you’ll be able to see what videos they’re watching. You can also recommend videos in real-time. It’s still a little clunky, but TechCrunch has a full review on their website.

(via TechCrunch)

Soundcloud makes sharing music files easy peasy


Do you work in, or closely with, music? Do you regularly find yourself trying to send music files to people, and having difficulty due to the multi-MB nature of most music files? Yeah, I know, email sucks – but so does linking someone to a MySpace, especially if it’s a file that you don’t necessarily want on public release.

Or perhaps you’re a DJ, and you want to share mixes with people you know. Not publicly, just to close friends, or people on a mailing list. In either case, what you need is a recently-launched site called Soundcloud.

Nokia intros the 6260 slide for "high speed sharing"


Nokia has introduced its latest slider phone and is emphasising how it’s “made for high speed sharing”.

Obviously, all mobile phones are made for sharing – funnily enough they were invented as a way to talk to people, before someone came along and thought that sending 160 character strings of text was a much better way of communicating, and then someone else decided to squeeze the whole of the Internet onto mobile phones and unleash the horrors wonders of Facebook and MySpace onto unsuspecting commuters.

Anyway, you get the idea. Nokia’s 6260 slide is fitted with the latest HSDPA and HSUPA technology, meaning it should be a breeze to both upload and download photos and videos to and from the plethora of web services it’s now obligatory to use on the move…

DRM on Sacred 2: Fallen Angel encourages sharing


Now this is what I like to see. DRM that rewards customers who’ve bought games, not punishes them. The DRM system on a new PC game – Sacred 2: Fallen Angel – allows any purchaser of a full physical or digital copy the right to pass the game around as many people as they like. The recipients will get 24 hours worth of full gameplay before they have the option to either uninstall or buy the game.

It’s fantastic because it lets people who’ve paid for the game share their love of it, but still helps people buy it. Users who upgrade from a shared copy won’t need to do any more installing, just put in an activation code. A round of applause for publishers ASCARON, please.

Sacred 2: Fallen Angel

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The Pirate Bay hits 15 million downloaders and 3 million registered users


How appropriate. Just a few days after Talk Like a Pirate Day 2008, the Pirate Bay – the world’s most notorious bittorrent tracker – has announced that it has hit 15 million peers, and 3 million registered users. For those of you unfamiliar with bittorrent terminology, that means that they’ve got 3 million uploaders, and 15 million downloaders. That’s more than the populations of Norway and Sweden put together…