Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

Netflix and other news

Kind of a hodgepodge today.. Some interesting topics.

Big news in the tech world. Implications unknown. Some court has found that smart phone maker HTC has infringed on Apple patents, and now not only is the company (and other smart phone makers) in um, er, “a muddle” (without a paddle?) but the future of android is suddenly unclear .. perhaps doomed.

I love the idea of letting clueless (frequently “seasoned citizen”) judges decide the future of tech. I understand a few of them have heard of the “Internet thingy”, so maybe not all their decision will be hopelessly uninformed and short-sighted. Just 99.9% of them to date have been..

Here’s something to read, if you’re interested: Apple deals massive patent blow to HTC, Android in serious trouble

“Late yesterday an ITC judge ruled that smartphone maker HTC has infringed two Apple patents, and it seems likely that every single Android device out there infringes the same patents.” Read more..


And I suppose I should say something about Netflix, and their recent price hike. Seems many of you are quite upset. Many think it is pure and simple gouging, and are particularly incensed as they feel Netflix have us by the short and curlies: many are canceling their subscriptions.
Okay. I understand that. (And they certainly could have gone about it better!)

If enough people cancel – it is reasonable to speculate they will rethink.

But I suspect there is more going on here, and it is my hope that this increase in revenue will be reinvested. See.. Netflix needs bigger pipes (more ‘infrastructure’) to keep up with demand. Not only that, but how we view our entertainment is changing. Advertisement-based “network TV” is going the way of the Dodo bird. Netflix is trying to buy the rights to “content” — current shows and movies. The game is changing, and Netflix is trying to come out a winner as a “content provider”.. as NBC and CBS, et al, struggle to stay alive in this age of IPTV, and “streaming media”.
It takes serious money to compete with networks, media ‘moguls’, and Disney.

The Internet is changing the world, don’t you know? The issue is .. complicated. I am not canceling nor squawking — heck, I am so happy to be able to watch ‘on demand’ and commercial free, I might pay triple!
Man, do I hate ads.


I do not know how many times in my life, some yahoo has called me “Mr. Spock”. (So many, I have come to embrace, and adopt it.. and frequently use it myself when trying to describe myself to others.) I do not really look like Leonard Nimoy’s character. I get called that because I am seen as “logical” (and not “emotional”). Fortunately, I have discovered why — it turns out I am a “left-brain thinker”. That explains it! It hasn’t been easy…

10 curses of the analytical thinker

Being a left-brain thinker can be an asset in the IT field. But as Alan Norton observes, it’s not without its shortcomings.Read more..

There’s more news in the “world of tech”, but, it’ll have to wait for another day. Because it is sunny and nice and warm here again, (after a “cool” spell) all the way up to 82°, and I do have a small gap in my obligations. I am going to try to get outside and play. Maybe… throw a Frisbee. Haven’t done that in.. oh, 25 years?

Yawl take care now, ‘ya hear?

Today’s quotable:Of all the things you wear, your expression is the most important.”  ~ Janet Lane

I got an “invite”: (testing now) Spotify hits U.S. shores, plus browser and uTorrent news

Big news hit U.S. shores this past week in the form of Spotify, the European on-demand music-streaming service. CNET Senior Editor Donal Bell calls it “the best free music option since stealing,” but unfortunately, you may not get to try it for quite some time since as of now, Spotify is invite only.

Copyright 2007-2011 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.

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July 19, 2011 - Posted by | advice, Android, Apple, computers, digital music, gadgets, Internet, News, tech | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


  1. TechPaul,
    Great post! “I love the idea of letting clueless (frequently “seasoned citizen”) judges decide the future of tech. I understand a few of them have heard of the “Internet thingy”, so maybe not all their decision will be hopelessly uninformed and short-sighted. Just 99.9% of them to date have been..” Excellent point; and I would add US Congressmen to your list of powerful folks who know nothing about technology, trying to “help” us.


    Comment by Paul Lubic, Jr. | July 19, 2011 | Reply

    • Paul,
      Very nice to see you here again. I hope all is “groovy” w/you and yours!

      Yes, precisely, and good point. Even someone like me, who has been here in Silicon Valley since day one, watching tech companies come and go, and “dot com” bubbles burst, probably would make a poor judge (or lawmaker) in many of these cases.
      To expect non-techies to do it, well, it’s hardly surprising we’ve had the decisions we’ve had.

      I have been meaning to mention your excellent Paul’s Home Computing Blog to my readers again, so.. click the link folks and take a look, won’t you?


      Comment by techpaul | July 19, 2011 | Reply

  2. The Judges you describe as “seasoned citizen”, another one of your slaps at senior citizens, do not make technology law, nor do they determine the future of technology – as Paul Lubic pointed out, that is left to the politicians. If in fact, Judges have had an impact on the direction of technology, then given where we are, they’ve done a hell of a good job of it.

    These “clueless” and “hopelessly uninformed and short-sighted” legal experts you refer to, in the situation you describe, are dealing with a case, or cases, of Patent Law. Laws that have enacted to ensure the intellectual property rights of both companies, and individuals, are protected. Instead of being critical, you would have been better advised to point out how it is Patent Laws have positively impacted the boom in technology.

    Without the protection provided by Patents, just how much research and development do you expect would have occurred? How many organization do you think would have spent the huge sums of money associated with R and D, when the payback is the forced sharing of technological breakthroughs? NONE, it seems to me, would be a nice round number.

    Thomas Edison, who was involved in over 1,000 patent infringement suits in an effort to protect his work, would have had a comment or two on your observations, I expect.

    BTW, I notice you append “Copyright 2007-2011 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.” to each of your posts. I assume that’s an effort to protect your intellectual property rights. Yet, you have no qualms, it seems, in denying the same level of protection to those involved in the case you refer to.

    I find your lack of respect for well established and practical Patent Laws, puzzling.



    Comment by Bill Mullins | July 19, 2011 | Reply

    • While you are quite likely correct when you suggest I might be “better advised” to take the side you suggest, I decided to let my ignorances and prejudices show. I decided to take the ‘con’ side of this ‘debate’ (as long ago as United States v Microsoft). I happen to think that there have been several woeful court decisions – but I (think I) understand why: technology is changing so rapidly (and changing things so rapidly) that our courts are ill-prepared to keep up, nor have either the training nor expertise to see “big picture” (at least with tech). My 2¢.

      I thank you for presenting a ‘pro’ side so effectively and eloquently, and I am glad to see that someone out there ‘has their thinking caps on’.

      (… and perhaps I should add for the record, I prefer conversation and friendships with those older than me than with those younger – as a Rule. When I spend time with them, I learn.. when I spend time with youngsters, I find myself teaching [or.. trying to]. I’d rather learn.)


      Comment by techpaul | July 19, 2011 | Reply

  3. You’re a big man Paul…


    Comment by kstinman | July 20, 2011 | Reply

    • kstinman,
      Always a pleasure to see you here. I hope all is “groovy” with you and yours!


      Comment by techpaul | July 20, 2011 | Reply

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