Zuckerberg Wants Free Internet For All, XP Upgrades Halt PC Decline, And More… [Tech News Digest]
Also, New Zealand ISP gives its customers what they want, Isis discovers the power of branding, GameStop sets out to ruin video games, a potato salad is successfully funded through Kickstarter, and we all watch the 72-minute-long trailer for the 720-hour-long movie.
Zuckerberg Argues For Free Internet
Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg is calling for “basic Internet services” to be free and available to all. He makes his plea in an editorial for The Wall Street Journal, arguing that as the Internet will “help drive human progress” it should be accessible in the way 911 is accessible regardless of a phone plan.
This is a nice idea, but Zuckerberg doesn’t explain what he means by “basic Internet services,” and only briefly touches on how we, as a society, can make this happen. Big ideas are surely nothing without detailed plans.
The PC Isn’t Dead After All
You are running Windows XP with Java. WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH YOU/
— Ed Bott (@edbott) July 4, 2014
If Gartner’s latest predictions are to be believed, the humble PC isn’t dead after all. PC shipments slumped by an alarming 9.5 percent in 2013 , but the latest forecasts suggest only a slight decline of 2.9 percent in 2014. The decline in 2015 is expected to be even smaller, but shrinking declines do not represent a revival.
The reason behind this lessening drop? People upgrading from Windows XP . “Business upgrades from Windows XP and the general business replacement cycle will lessen the downward trend, especially in Western Europe,” said Ranjit Atwal, research director at Gartner. “This year, we anticipate nearly 60 million professional PC replacements in mature markets.”
Our readers may disagree; many are steadfastly refusing to move on from XP , while others are switching to Linux. Neither of which requires a new PC.
New Zealand ISP Adds VPN To Its Service
i can’t wait to finally say ‘today, im a new zealand citizen’
— ?a?e? (@katiewatie46) July 8, 2014
An ISP in New Zealand called Slingshot has added a VPN to its service in order to allow customers to watch streaming services such as Netflix and Hulu. The cleverly titled “global mode” reroutes traffic so that it looks like Slingshot customers are based somewhere other than New Zealand.
Netflix hasn’t yet launched in New Zealand, and Hulu is only available in the U.S. There are also plenty of other geoblocked services Slingshot customers will now be able to access by default thanks to using a VPN .
As this is straddling the line of legality, Slingshot suggests “global mode” is only intended for international guests staying in New Zealand. Of course it is.
Isis Rebranding To End ISIS Confusion
Mobile wallet app Isis is being forced to change its name to differentiate itself from ISIS ( the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant). Isis CEO Michael Abbott says the name has “become synonymous with violence,” hence the need to rebrand. A new name has yet to be chosen, but we humbly suggest avoiding rebranding as “Al-Qaeda.”
GameStop Keen On Exclusive Content
Any company that takes Gamestop up on this is publicly admitting its utter contempt for its customers.
— Jim Sterling (@JimSterling) July 8, 2014
GameStop has plans to offer more exclusive content for people pre-ordering video games from its stores in the future. This could mean GameStop “getting involved at the time of game development,” partnering with developers to insert content in games which will only be accessible to those who preordered through the retailer. Because what the games industry really needs right now more locked content included on discs.
Crowdfunding A Kickstarter Potato Salad
An absolute idiot/enterprising genius (delete as appropriate) has successfully crowdfunded the making of a potato salad. Zack Danger Brown asked for just $10 but has raised $35,000 at the time of writing with 25 days left on his campaign. We suspect Kickstarter may now be regretting its decision to soften its rules .
72-Minute Trailer For A 720-Hour film
And finally, Ambiancé is a new film set to have a running time of 720 hours. That’s 30 days. Swedish director Anders Weberg has put the first trailer — lasting 72 minutes — online, with further, longer, trailers promised in 2016 and 2018. The full film will be released on December 31st, 2020, when it will be screened once in its entirety and then destroyed. Why? We honestly don’t know.
Your Views On Today’s Tech News
Should basic Internet access be free? Can you take Mark Zuckerberg seriously? Is the PC dead or just on life support? Is the Kickstarter potato salad the dumbest thing ever?
Let us know your thoughts on the tech news of the day by posting to the comments section below. Because a healthy discussion is always welcome.
Image Credit: Lord Jim via Flickr