Google Buys Jaiku

Google Buys Jaiku

The Twitter-like service from Finland, Jaiku, has been purchased by search engine behemoth, Google.

My first thought after finding out about this was, “why?” Google doesn’t really need a micro-blogging platform, and if they were going to purchase one, why take what most people consider to be the second best or third best, at least in popularity.

Some people are saying this is just one of many mobile phone related services that Google is either buying or building to increase their market penetration in the cell phone, iPhone, connected devices market.

It will be interesting to see how much they paid for the service, as it will most likely add credence to the continuing growth of the Web 2.0 bubble that has been mentioned increasingly more often.

Here is the blog post on Jaiku’s home page about the acquisition:

Wonderful Jaiku users,
Exciting news, Jaiku is joining Google!

While it’s too soon to comment on specific plans, we look forward to working with our new friends at Google over the coming months to expand in ways we hope you’ll find interesting and useful. Our engineers are excited to be working together and enthusiastic developers lead to great innovation. We look forward to accomplishing great things together. In order to focus on innovation instead of scaling, we have decided to close new user sign-ups for now.

But fear not, all our Jaiku services will stay running the way you are used to and you will be able to invite your friends to Jaiku. We have put together a quick Q&A about the acquisition.

Jyri Engeström and Petteri Koponen, Jaiku Founders

Do you Jaiku? Have your say about Google buying Jaiku in the comments.

Google and IBM help students reach for the clouds

By Sterling Camden
Contributing Writer, [GAS]

 It’s always a challenge for colleges and universities to keep up with advancing technology.  Back when I was hiring people, I was often disappointed by the lack of exposure to current practice obtained by new graduates during the course of their matriculation.  Technology advances so rapidly that unless you get your degree from one of the schools that create the new stuff, you’ll probably be five to ten years behind the times when you graduate.

Now imagine that you’re hiring for a company that defines the leading edge, like Google.  How do you find graduates who can work with your technology, when your technology isn’t being taught anywhere?  Answer: push your tech out to the universities.

Google has teamed up with IBM to create large data centers for students at six universities to learn “cloud computing” — the type of computing that uses thousands of processors and huge data stores to drive sites like

These data centers will use “an open-source version of Google’s data center software” — a most interesting arrangement.  Obviously, the kids can’t learn it if it’s closed, but Rich Miller asks how much of Google’s secret sauce will be given away in this version?  There would seem to be a dilemma between wanting the students to have as rich an understanding as possible of the technology, versus protecting Google’s trade secrets from competitors.  But perhaps Google understands that any given technological advantage is fleeting, and that continued dominance rests more on the people they cultivate than on the algorithms they protect.

iPod pants on fire: liar liar?

Even though this was first reported two days ago, we couldn’t call ourselves “Geeks are Sexy” if we didn’t write about a case of iPod-induced pants on fire.

Danny Williams was working at his kiosk at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta airport and listening to his iPod Nano, when suddenly the music got a little bit too hot. Apparently the lithium ion battery (yes, the same kind of battery that produced several cases of exploding laptops last year and, um, “sparked” a recall) caught fire right in Danny’s pants pocket.

According to Williams, flames shot up to his chest before he noticed anything was going on (I don’t know what he was listening to, so maybe that extra warm feeling in his pants didn’t seem out of the ordinary). But he avoided having his meatballs broiled, thanks to an amazingly fire-retardent piece of glossy paper in his pocket. As one commenter on engadget said,

Ah yes, we all know the life saving properties of a “glossy piece of paper”. After all it’s what all flak jackets are made of.

Lots more great comments over at Fake Steve and Gizmodo.

Perhaps Danny’s story has been exaggerated just a wee bit. But I don’t doubt that the unit actually did overheat. After all, it’s happened before. Apple has reportedly offered to replace the year-old Nano, but I’m betting that Danny (or his lawyer) might be looking to cook up something more than that.

Can guest blogging be good for you and your site?

That’s the question I answered in a guest post over at after my newfound buddy David wrote a guest article for us two days ago. For those of you interested in learning more about why guest blogging could be profitable for you and your site, just follow this link and read what I have to say about the subject.

Who said guest blogging was worthless?

50 years of the Space Age

Scale model of Sputnik 1, from the Muzeum Tekniki, Warsaw, PolandBy Lyle Bateman
Contributing Writer, [GAS]

Today marks the 50th anniversary of one of the most significant events of the 20th century. Technology never exists in a vacuum … no matter what technical advancement we think of, there are always social, political, and ideological currents swirling around it as well as the technical ones. But, from time to time, a technical achievement happens that is so significant, it makes others pale in comparison. Such is the story of Sputnik 1, the first human object ever to orbit the earth.

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Big Bang Theory is the Ultimate Geek Sitcom

…apart from the IT crowd that is!

The Big Bang Theory is a brand new sitcom that shows what happens when two hyperintelligent nerds meet a beautiful woman–and realize they know next to nothing about life outside of the lab.

This new serie airs on Monday nights at 8:30/7:30c on CBS. It will also be broadcasted on CTV and Channel 4 in Canada and the United Kingdom respectively.

The first full episode can be watched on CBS’s website. Enjoy!

Edit: Ok, the episode is not available for now, but I’m sure it’ll get back on eventually, so you might want to try the link again in a few hours.

(via BelchSpeak)

How Television and News Works

How Television Works

‘How Television Works’ is a must see for anyone curious about who controls television, why producers alter their programming to appease corporate sponsors, and what detrimental affects television has on human brain chemistry, attention span and behaviour.

How the News Works

‘How The News works’ is a closer inspection into the relationships between news agencies and news casters to their corporate shareholders which helps to explain why you shouldn’t believe a single word broadcast on the daily news.