Capturing shopper habits – Technology – BrisbaneTimes – brisbanetimes.com.au
Capturing shopper habits
Woolworths’ Everyday Money Credit Card is the first in the country to combine a credit card with a sophisticated loyalty program capable of capturing and then sending a shopper’s purchasing details back to a central database. The database is linked to the company’s recently launched fuel voucher card.
It pre-empts a move by David Jones, which has teamed up with American Express to launch a card by Christmas with potentially similar capabilities.
The Woolworths card was launched yesterday and will be in stores from next week. It will join the 3.8 million plastic fuel voucher cards already on issue, collecting shopping data and sending it back to Woolworths computers. About two-thirds of that number of card holders will have their personal details on a separate database that will be able to “talk” to the card database.
The card will not only collect data on grocery purchases; it will also record information about purchases through Woolworths-owned outlets, from clothing to homewares, petrol, alcohol and electronics.
Woolworths said cardholders could protect their privacy by “opting out” from detailed data collection.
A public pitch – BizTech – Technology – brisbanetimes.com.au
A public pitch
Supervirals.com (www.supervirals.com) is a website where the public can submit advertising suggestions to established brands and in the process receive financial rewards and moral kudos.
It is an adman’s way of creating user-generated content for the benefit of advertisers, albeit with little investment from them.
Customers are asked to come up with T-shirt designs, music videos, posters and other ideas according to the brief and upload them to the site within a deadline.
Record your add submit and if viewed the most you win the prize. I checked out VB and for free beer for a year for you and a mate the winner is a girl gargling to the VB tune
Australia’s neighbours get laptop for every child – News – Laptops
Australia’s neighbours get laptop for every child
The tiny South Pacific nation of Niue today became the first nation in the world to issue laptop computers to all its children, officials said.
Every primary and secondary school student was this week given a rugged “relatively waterproof and breakproof” little green laptop, which has wireless connection to the Internet as part of the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) initiative.
The computers have been specially designed by OLPC, a US-based charity, to help children’s learning and to be cheap as well as difficult to break or damage.
The donation of 500 computers to Niue — which has a total population of less than 1,500 — is part of an initiative to distribute 5,000 laptops in the Pacific region, OLPC said in a statement.
Wireless power ‘eliminates chargers’ – Technology – BrisbaneTimes
Wireless power ‘eliminates chargers’
Intel showed off a wireless electric power system that analysts say could revolutionise modern life by freeing devices from transformers and wall outlets.
Intel chief technology officer Justin Rattner demonstrated a Wireless Energy Resonant Link as he spoke at the California firm’s annual developers forum in San Francisco.
Electricity was sent wirelessly to a lamp on stage, lighting a 60 watt bulb that uses more power than a typical laptop computer.
Most importantly, the electricity was transmitted without zapping anything or anyone that got between the sending and receiving units.
On the Surface, it’s a revolution – Technology – BrisbaneTimes
On the Surface, it’s a revolution
Australia has become the first country outside the US to receive Microsoft’s radical new $US10,000 Surface coffee table computer that responds to touch.
First unveiled last year, the machines have already been introduced into some US hotels – such as the Sheraton, Starwood and Harrah’s chains – letting customers order food directly, book entertainment and play music and games.
Last week, Sydney-based digital marketing firm Amnesia received two Surface test units, which were packaged in 125-kilogram wooden crates.
The computers, which feature a 30-inch touchscreen panel, are controlled by hand gestures similar to those found in the science fiction movie Minority Report. They can also interact with non-digital objects placed on top of them.
For instance, at Starwood Hotels customers can pay for items by dropping a credit card on to the touchscreen, while those visiting stores of US telco AT&T can compare phone features and plans by placing two different phones on the table.
Casino giant Harrah’s has introduced Surface computers at the Rio, which let patrons order drinks, make dinner reservations, book shows, watch YouTube videos, play touchscreen games and even flirt with people sitting at other tables.
At some hotels and restaurants, bills can be split by placing two cards on the table and dragging menu items onto the card
The Surface computers, based on Windows Vista, are believed to cost $US10,000 each and businesses can develop custom software to enable a vast array of interactive applications
Cheap mobile deal to serve up ads – Technology – BrisbaneTimes
Cheap mobile deal to serve up ads
An Australian telco has announced new mobile plans that cost users less than half the usual price as long as they are willing to view advertisements.
ComTel, which operates on the Vodafone network, will market the plans under the SMSPup brand and claims it is the country’s first advertising subsidised mobile phone service.
On a regular ComTel mobile plan without advertising, post-paid customers pay $29 a month for $130 worth of calls and messages.
Under the new plans, if they are willing to accept five advertising messages a day the price is slashed to $10 a month.
“The advertising will be a combination of SMS and MMS ads or email to your home internet address,” ComTel COO Paul McFadden said.
Internode triples ADSL2+ coverage area
Internode triples ADSL2+ coverage area
Internode says it will now be able to offer ADSL2+ broadband to people living up to 7.5KM from a Telstra exchange.
Previously, the maximum line length imposed by Telstra was about 4.1km. Internode says the change will allow it to cover an area around the exchange of more than 176 sq km, compared to 52 sq km under the old rules.
The extended reach is only available on Internode’s dial-tone free NakedExtreme plans, which use ADSL over raw copper without Telstra also piping a phone service down the same line.
As a result, Internode isn’t subject to the signal interference limits that are mandatory if a phone service is being offered on a copper line.
REAL LIFE HEADLINES
Man Kills Self Before Shooting Wife and Daughter
America’s Got Talent
Something Went Wrong in Jet Crash, Expert Says
Those FRAKKING experts?
Police Begin Campaign to Run Down Jaywalkers
Now that’s taking things a bit far!
Panda Mating Fails; Veterinarian Takes Over
What a guy!
Miners Refuse to Work after Death
No-good-for-nothing’ lazy s o-and-so’s!
Juvenile Court to Try Shooting Defendant
See if that works any better than a fair trial!
War Dims Hope for Peace
I can see where it might have that effect!
If Strike Isn’t Settled Quickly, It May Last Awhile
Cold Wave Linked to Temperatures
Who would have thought!
Enfield (London) Couple Slain; Police Suspect Homicide
They may be on to something!
Red Tape Holds Up New Bridges
You mean there’s something stronger than duct tape?!
Oklahoma’s construction program!
Man Struck By Lightning: Faces Battery Charge
He probably IS the battery charge
New Study of Obesity Looks for Larger Test Group
Weren’t they fat enough?!
Astronaut Takes Blame for Gas in Spacecraft
That’s what he gets for eating those beans!
Kids Make Nutritious Snacks
Do they taste like chicken?
Local High School Dropouts Cut in Half
Chainsaw Massacre all over again!
Hospitals are Sued by 7 Foot Doctors
Boy, are they tall!
And the winner is….
Typhoon Rips Through Cemetery; Hundreds Dead
Did I read that right?
The current generation of consoles still has three to four more years before newer hardware hits the market, but Nintendo’s next may arrive sooner, according to one analyst.
Lazard Capital Markets analyst Colin Sebastian said in an investor note on Monday, “At this point, we believe the consensus opinion among industry professionals is that the next significant hardware refresh is unlikely to occur before 2011, and more likely in 2012.”
But he said Nintendo’s next home console could arrive before then. “One possible exception to console timing may be Nintendo, which could opt to upgrade the Wii with faster processing power, DVD capability and/or greater storage.”
The original Xbox had roughly a four year run before its successor Xbox 360 came to market. PS2 was out for about six years prior to the release of PS3, and Nintendo’s GameCube had a five year run prior to Wii’s launch.
San Jose’s Immersion Corp., purveyor of all things force feedback, said Tuesday that it will pay Microsoft $21 million to settle litigation that cropped up in June last year, a legal web which also involved Sony.
Now that the Microsoft and Immersion have come to terms, Immersion will become part of Microsoft’s Certified Partner Program.
Immersion’s settlement will be a one-time payment for the full amount. Additional terms of the settlement are confidential.
Immersion had sued Microsoft for patent infringement in 2002, accusing the software giant of using its vibration technology in game controllers without permission. The two companies supposedly settled out of court in 2003.
But the two firms did not see eye-to-eye on one of the terms of the settlement agreement, bringing Microsoft to sue the company. Immersion allegedly agreed to give the Microsoft a cut of the bounty if the force feedback company settled its controller suit with Sony, which was also being sued by Immersion.
When Sony and Immersion settled for $121 million in 2007, Microsoft came knocking for its purported share, suing the company. Immersion said it wasn’t obligated to pay Microsoft, and filed a counterclaim.
Now it appears the dispute is truly in the past. “We are pleased to resolve our outstanding dispute with Microsoft and to put this litigation behind us,” said Immersion CEO Clent Richardson in a statement.
Good Game Spelling Mistake in Mario Story on A Cartridge Affair. Episode 2.
CAPTCHA POF Work It Baby Work It
Kid Rock Not on US iTunes but is everywhere else.
Hard to Get DVD’s easily found on Torrent Sites
Top Gear rips the Prius a new one.
Tom Clancy’s END WAR completely voice activated. WOW.
$200 1Tb Western Digital HD
PS3 Divx and Bluetooth Keyboard YAY.
Correspondents in London | August 27, 2008
A BRITISH data processing firm has launched an urgent review after a staff member sold a computer on eBay containing personal details of a million bank customers.
The computer was bought on the online auction site for $75 by Andrew Chapman, an IT manager from Oxford, in central England, who found the information on the computer’s hard drive.
It included bank account numbers, phone numbers, mothers’ maiden names and signatures of one million customers of American Express, NatWest and the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), the Independent newspaper reported.
It had belonged to data processing company Mail Source which is part of Graphic Data, a company that holds financial information for banks and other organisations.
A spokeswoman for Mail Source said the employee who sold the computer had made an “honest mistake” but insisted it had been an “isolated incident”.
She said: “The computer was removed from our secure storage facility in Essex and sold on eBay.
“We know which employee took the server and sold it, but we believe it was an honest mistake and it was not intentional to sell it without the server being cleared.
Mitchell Bingemann | August 26, 2008
AUSTRALIANS living in metropolitan areas may be logging on to the internet using the Government’s $4.7 billion national broadband network as early as next April, although regional users will not be so lucky.
Industry analysts say such a scenario is only possible if Telstra wins the lucrative bid and if the Government is prepared to place an indefinite hold on extending the broadband services to underserviced regions.
The project, which has already blown its original schedule by six months, is finally back on the rails after 13 telecommunications carriers submitted their network information to the Government last week.
Proponents will use the information that details Australia’s network infrastructure to bid for the contract to build a network capable of delivering high-speed internet to 98 per cent of Australia’s population.
The network information is currently under review by Communications Minister Stephen Conroy’s department, but it is expected to be delivered to each of the bidders for the network by early next week.
Once the network information leaves Senator Conroy’s department, proponents will be given 12 weeks to finalise their bids ahead of a tentative submission deadline in early December.
Bids will then be passed on to a panel of experts, which will be given two months to assess the proposals and to identify preferred proponents.
An additional two months negotiation time will then be available before the Government signs off on the winning bid at the beginning of April – if all goes according to plan. With a good chance that a winning bidder will be announced in early April, there’s an equally good chance that first services from the network could be delivered the same month.
Despite having firmly pencilled in a date for the announcement of the successful bidder, Senator Conroy declined to suggest when first services could be expected. This is not surprising as he has been stung in the past by premature predictions.
iPhone slip makes worker a star
SHANGHAI – A Chinese factory worker has become a celebrity after her smiling face was accidentally loaded onto an Apple iPhone and shipped to the other side of the world.
The unidentified worker flashed a smile and made a peace sign to a co-worker whose job was to test the device’s camera in the southern city of Shenzhen, said a spokesman for Foxconn, which assembles the phones for Apple.
The woman’s colleague apparently forgot to delete the photo from the phone, which was sold to a consumer in Britain, who posted it on the internet, Foxconn spokesman Liu Kun told AFP today.
He said so far only one phone was known to be affected.
“Small mistakes are unavoidable,” Liu said. “I would call this a beautiful mistake.”
Woman ‘tried to kidnap Second Life boyfriend’
CLAYMONT, Delaware – A woman who fell in love with the online persona of a man in the virtual world Second Life has been charged in the United States with trying to kidnap him.
Police charged North Carolina woman Kimberly Jernigan with trying to kidnap a man from the state of Delaware, and breaking into his apartment, after he ended their online relationship.
They had met while using Second Life – a virtual world where people can create characters and interact with others in the virtual world, CBS reports.
But when they met for real several months ago, the 52-year-old man ended their online relationship.
Police allege Jernigan, 33, drove to the victim’s workplace earlier this month and tried to kidnap him at gunpoint.
She failed, and returned a fortnight later, posing as a postal worker to get his new address.
It is alleged she later broke into the man’s apartment, and when he arrived home he told police he saw someone pointing an object at his chest that was projecting a laser beam.
He fled and alerted police.
Police who arrived at the scene found handcuffs, duct tape and a Taser gun, along with Jernigan’s dog Gogi, who had been bound with tape to stop him from making noise, the CBS report said.
Robo-skeleton lets paralysed walk
A robotic suit is helping people paralysed from the waist down do what was previously considered impossible – stand, walk and climb stairs.
ReWalk users wear a backpack device and braces on their legs and select the activity they want from a remote control wrist band.
Leaning forwards activates body sensors setting the robotic legs in motion.
Users walk with crutches, controlling the suit through changes in centre of gravity and upper body movements.
The device effectively mimics the exoskeletion of a crab.
Former Israeli paratrooper Radi Kaiof has been paralysed for the last 20 years following an injury during his service in the Israeli military.
He says the device has changed his life.
“I never dreamed I would walk again. After I was wounded, I forgot what it’s like. Only when standing up can I feel how tall I really am and speak to people eye to eye, not from below.”
iPhone ad rapped as ‘misleading’
A television advert for the iPhone misled consumers, the Advertising Standards Authority has ruled.
Two complaints to the watchdog noted that the advert said “all the parts of the internet are on the iPhone”.
But the ASA said because the iPhone did not support Flash or Java – two programs that form part of many webpages – the claim was misleading.
Apple had argued its claim referred to availability of webpages, rather than their specific appearance.
The iPhone employs a web browser called Safari, which is built on freely available software. Many webpages, however, employ small software programs like Flash and Java to display graphics and animations.
Those programs are proprietary software, and Apple opted not to enable them on the iPhone. The result is that pages viewed with Safari may look different to those same pages viewed on other browsers.
The ASA said the advert “gave a misleading impression of the internet capabilities of the iPhone”.
It must therefore not be aired again in its current form, it said.
A UK-built solar-powered plane has set an unofficial world endurance record for a flight by an unmanned aircraft.
The Zephyr-6, as it is known, stayed aloft for more than three days, running through the night on batteries it had recharged in sunlight.
The flight was a demonstration for the US military, which is looking for new types of technology to support its troops on the ground.
Craft like Zephyr might make ideal platforms for reconnaissance.
They could also be used to relay battlefield communications.
Chris Kelleher, from UK defence and research firm QinetiQ, said Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) offer advantages over traditional aircraft and even satellites.
“The principal advantage is persistence – that you would be there all the time,” he told BBC News. “A satellite goes over the same part of the Earth twice a day – and one of those is at night – so it’s only really getting a snapshot of activity. Zephyr would be watching all day.”