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Posts Tagged ‘Anderson’

Gerry Anderson, Co-Creator of Thunderbirds, Dies

December 26th, 2012 12:29 admin View Comments

Sci-Fi

jamstar7 writes “According to the BBC, ‘Gerry Anderson, the creator of hit TV shows including Thunderbirds, Stingray and Joe 90, has died at the age of 83. He also created Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons and his puppet superheroes fired the imaginations of millions of young viewers in the 1960s and ’70s. Thunderbirds, a science-fiction fantasy about a daring rescue squad, ran from 1965 and was his most famous show.’ In my opinion, his greatest creation was Space: 1999, an ITV production with practically no budget, which had great shows in the first season. Unfortunately, like so many other Gerry & Sylvia Anderson projects, it ran out of gas in the second season. They did some great stuff.” Anderson’s son Jamie also has a post in remembrance of his father.

Source: Gerry Anderson, Co-Creator of Thunderbirds, Dies

The World Falls Back In Love With Coal

November 23rd, 2012 11:43 admin View Comments

Earth

Hugh Pickens writes writes “Richard Anderson reports on BBC that despite stringent carbon emissions targets in Europe designed to slow global warming and massive investment in renewable energy in China, coal, the dirtiest and most polluting of all the major fossil fuels, is making a comeback with production up 6% over 2010, twice the rate of increase of gas and more than four times that of oil. ‘What is going on is a shift from nuclear power to coal and from gas to coal; this is the worst thing you could do, from a climate change perspective,’ says Dieter Helm. Why the shift back to coal? Because coal is cheap, and getting cheaper all the time. Due to the economic downturn, there has been a ‘collapse in industrial demand for energy,’ leading to an oversupply of coal, pushing the price down. Meanwhile China leads the world in coal production and consumption. It mines over 3 billion tons of coal a year, three times more than the next-biggest producer (America), and last year overtook Japan to become the world’s biggest coal importer. Although China is spending massive amounts of money on a renewable energy but even this will not be able to keep up with demand, meaning fossil fuels will continue to make up the majority of the overall energy mix for the foreseeable future and when it comes to fossil fuels, coal is the easy winner — it is generally easier and cheaper to mine, and easier to transport using existing infrastructure such as roads and rail, than oil or gas. While China is currently running half a dozen carbon capture and storage (CCS) projects — which aim to capture CO2 emissions from coal plants and bury it underground — the technology is nowhere near commercial viability. ‘Renewed urgency in developing CCS globally, alongside greater strides in increasing renewable energy capacity, is desperately needed,’ writes Anderson, ‘but Europe’s increasing reliance on coal without capturing emissions is undermining its status as a leader in clean energy, and therefore global efforts to reduce CO2 emissions.’”

Source: The World Falls Back In Love With Coal

Earth’s Corner of the Galaxy Just Got a Little Lonelier

August 22nd, 2012 08:13 admin View Comments

Space

Hugh Pickens writes “Only four stars, including Barnard’s Star, are within six light-years of the Sun, and only 11 are within 10 light-years. That’s why Barnard’s star, popularized in Robert Forward’s hard-SF novel Flight of the Dragonfly, is often short-listed as a target for humanity’s first interstellar probe. Astronomers have long hoped to find a habitable planet around it, an alien Earth that might someday bear the boot prints of a future Neil Armstrong, or the tire tracks of a souped-up 25th-century Curiosity rover. But now Ross Anderson reports that a group of researchers led by UC Berkeley’s Jieun Choi have delivered the fatal blow to those hopes when they revealed the results of 248 precise Doppler measurements that were designed to examine the star for wobbles indicative of planets around it. The measurements, taken over a period of 25 years, led to a depressing conclusion: ‘the habitable zone around Barnard’s star appears to be devoid of roughly Earth-mass planets or larger … [p]revious claims of planets around the star by van de Kamp are strongly refuted.’ NASA’s Kepler space telescope, which studies a group of distant Milky Way stars, has found more than 2,000 exoplanet candidates in just the past two years, leading many to suspect that our galaxy is home to billions of planets, a sizable portion of which could be habitable. ‘This non-detection of nearly Earth-mass planets around Barnard’s Star is surely unfortunate, as its distance of only 1.8 parsecs would render any Earth-size planets valuable targets for imaging and spectroscopy, as well as compelling destinations for robotic probes by the end of the century.’”

Source: Earth’s Corner of the Galaxy Just Got a Little Lonelier

Microsoft Blocks 3d-Party Browsers In Windows RT, Says Mozilla Counsel

May 10th, 2012 05:47 admin View Comments

Firefox

nk497 writes “Mozilla has accused Microsoft of trying to go back to the ‘digital dark ages’ by limiting rival browsers in the ARM version of Windows 8. Third-party browsers won’t work in the desktop mode, and Metro style browsers will be limited in what APIs they can use, said Mozilla general counsel Harvey Anderson, forcing users to move to IE instead. Mozilla said it was the first step toward a new platform lock-in that ‘restricts user choice, reduces competition and chills innovation,’ and pointed out that such browser control was exactly what upset EU and U.S. regulators about IE in the first place. Anderson called on Microsoft to ‘reject the temptation to pursue a closed path,’ adding ‘the world doesn’t need another closed proprietary environment.’”

Source: Microsoft Blocks 3d-Party Browsers In Windows RT, Says Mozilla Counsel

Twitter Analytical Tools Threaten Third-Party Developers

February 2nd, 2012 02:00 admin View Comments

Twitter may become the heavyweight in analytics of its own content, boxing out rivals HootSuite, bit.ly and Klout.

As first reported by ReadWriteWeb, Twitter plans to launch sophisticated analytical tools, according to Erica Anderson, Twitter’s manager for news and journalism.
Anderson, who made the comments last weekend at a social media conference at Columbia University in New York, said the analytical tools will better help publishers track the reach of tweets sent through the microblogging service. Twitter already offers similar services to its advertisers.

The British public relations agency Punch said that the obvious advantage Twitter has in analytics of its own API stream will probably be too much for marketers looking to understand their social media campaigns to pass up.

“Whilst there are numerous analytics tools available which can look into Twitter in depth, having an analytics platform embedded within the network itself is likely to improve the quality of future campaigns as a whole,” Pete Goold, managing director of Punch said in a statement. “This development may also be part of Twitter’s strategy to try and persuade more brands to invest in the platform from a marketing perspective, since the pool of information and insights which could be available through Twitter is astronomical.”

Twitter’s open API has been widely praised and has allowed companies like HootSuite to develop platforms that not only help users manage Twitter campaigns, but analyze the impact and reach of individual tweets. Recently, however, Twitter has made moves to compete with the third party providers.

In addition to the anticipated analytical tools, Twitter acquired and then redesigned TweetDeck, a popular HootSuite competitor. The redesign mimicked many of HootSuite’s more popular features, including a browser based platform.

Of course, seeing is believing: Twitter has been promising analytics tools for at least two years, with an executive once saying they would be available by the end of 2010.

Source: Twitter Analytical Tools Threaten Third-Party Developers

Think Before You Tweet, And Other Good Advice From The Experts

January 30th, 2012 01:00 admin View Comments

2012schoo_reasonably_small (1).jpgOfficially, Sree Sreenivasan is the dean of student affairs and a professor at Columbia University’s Journalism School, but for many he is the curator of Sree’s Tips, a Tumblr blog crammed with how-to social media information, as well as a leading figure in the social media movement. This past weekend he was also the point person for Columbia’s Social Media Weekend in New York.

What follows is a recap of some of Sreenivasan’s best advice for better utilizing Twitter from the weekend, as well as nuggets of information for doing better social media that were culled from the more than 50 speakers. When talking about social media, Sreenivasan tends to stress connections over self promotion (although being connected tends to lead to better promotion). He was also quick to stress throughout the weekend “We’re all learning here.”

Think Before You Tweet

Sreenivasan says he spends an average of three to five minutes thinking about and composing every tweet he sends out, which is a lot of time for a guy who pumps out half a dozen tweets on an average day.

It’s even more time considering that Sreenivasan concedes that “most people will miss most of what we send” through social networks. Still, Sreenivasan says what he tweets tend to have the biggest impact, and are therefore worth the extra care.

Content Is King

On Sunday, Sreenivasan pulled up his own Twitter page, which had tweets full of links, hash tags and mentions of other users. An @ mention insures at least one person will see your tweet, while links add value to the tweets you put out into the world.

“See all that blue?” he said, referring to the links. “All of those are connections or potential connections.”

Indeed, several presenters stressed the importance of not only including content, but presenting content in a way that encourages click-throughs. Erica Anderson, Twitter’s manager for news and journalism, said when sharing articles, try to find an interesting quote or tidbit from the story instead of simply tweeting the headline.

Anderson also said photos and video had also become more important since Twitter’s redesign late last year. In particular, they have become popular among reporters embedded with the presidential campaigns, who have been sharing candid moments. “People love photos on Twitter,” Anderson said.

Overhaul Your Twitter Profile

Sreenivasan pulled up the Twitter profile of New York Times reporter Brian Stelter and noted that he included two phone numbers, an email address, a Web site and a description of what he covered for the Times (as opposed to just saying he was a reporter for the paper).

Sreenivasan said that despite having more than 100,000 followers, Stelter has never received a prank phone call.

Stelter, who is as close to being a social media expert as one can get in journalism circles, also uses his full name on his profile. Users who just defer to their Twitter handle, a company name, or nick name risk not being found by people who want to follow them, Sreenivasan said.

Screen Shot 2012-01-30 at 5.57.24 PM.png

Finally, Sreenivasan directed people to look past the number of people following Stelter and look at the 2,500 Stelter himself follows. That, Sreenivasan said, is the real value for using social media in journalism and other fields: by seeking out people to follow, we’re seeking more information, he said.

“Whatever you have as a number in that ‘following,’ space, it’s not enough,” Sreenivasan said.

Be Safe

Anderson spent a portion of her Saturday morning talk stressing security. She gave a plug for multi-platform manager 1Password and said people should get in the habit of checking their browser’s address bar for https:// as opposed to http:// before logging into Twitter and other sites.

Anderson also recommended using a company email account when signing up for Twitter and other sites where social interaction is encouraged. That can prevent hackers from accessing personal email accounts, which may have more sensitive personal information.

Keep Reading

One blog post is not enough to digest a weekend’s worth of info sessions. Some of the best tips have been curated under the hash tags #smwknd and #smwkndcool.

Source: Think Before You Tweet, And Other Good Advice From The Experts

Twitter Upgrades Will Include Analytical Tools

January 29th, 2012 01:30 admin View Comments

Twitter will unveil a series of new tools in the next few months, including sophisticated analytical tools, according to Erica Anderson, Twitter’s manager for news and journalism.

Anderson said the analytical tools will better help publishers track the reach of tweets sent through the microblogging service. She made her comments Saturday at Columbia University’s social media weekend in New York.

Anderson mentioned the new tools in passing when asked by an audience member about what was next. As described, the tools sound similar to analytical services provided by third-party firms like HootSuite and SocialFlow.

We’ve contacted Twitter’s public relations department for more information, including an expected launch date. We’ll update when we hear back.

Going forward, Anderson expects to see more people using Twitter to predict behaviors by analyzing wide swaths of tweets. She did not make it clear if the new analytical tools will include some features aimed at spotting trends.

“The predictive nature of Twitter is still largely untapped,” she said.

Anderson also said Twitter was working on a new, company-run account and blog that would “highlight great pieces of twitter in real time.” The blog would be aimed at showing different ways people are using the service.

Source: Twitter Upgrades Will Include Analytical Tools

Twitter Upgrades Will Include Analytical Tools

January 29th, 2012 01:30 admin View Comments

Twitter will unveil a series of new tools in the next few months, including sophisticated analytical tools, according to Erica Anderson, Twitter’s manager for news and journalism.

Anderson said the analytical tools will better help publishers track the reach of tweets sent through the microblogging service. She made her comments Saturday at Columbia University’s social media weekend in New York.

Anderson mentioned the new tools in passing when asked by an audience member about what was next. As described, the tools sound similar to analytical services provided by third-party firms like HootSuite and SocialFlow.

We’ve contacted Twitter’s public relations department for more information, including an expected launch date. We’ll update when we hear back.

Going forward, Anderson expects to see more people using Twitter to predict behaviors by analyzing wide swaths of tweets. She did not make it clear if the new analytical tools will include some features aimed at spotting trends.

“The predictive nature of Twitter is still largely untapped,” she said.

Anderson also said Twitter was working on a new, company-run account and blog that would “highlight great pieces of twitter in real time.” The blog would be aimed at showing different ways people are using the service.

Source: Twitter Upgrades Will Include Analytical Tools

Microsoft SC 2012 to Support Multi-Hypervisor Private Cloud for a Flat Fee

January 17th, 2012 01:30 admin View Comments

Microsoft System Center (150 px).jpgIn a move to stay competitive in a cloud landscape that looked to be blowing it away, Microsoft this morning is making important strategic shifts that could advance its position in a two-front war against both VMware and Amazon. Today the company is making available a release candidate for its System Center 2012 administrative suite, which will utilize a new fabric controller (FC) for private cloud architectures.

This new FC will be hypervisor-agnostic. Up until today, Microsoft’s private cloud product was called “Hyper-V Cloud,” and was centered around the Hyper-V hypervisor. Today, as the company’s corporate vice president tells ReadWriteWeb, the new SC 2012 Datacenter edition will feature a completely renovated, simplified licensing model, now supporting unlimited virtual machines for the same, flat fee.

Trying to smash VMware flat

“The biggest innovation we did in System Center 2012 is, we dramatically simplified the licensing and pricing,” Microsoft CVP Brad Anderson tells RWW. The existing edition had eight different SKUs, enough to compel customers to literally attend seminars about which versions to purchase. With the 2012 edition, there will be the Standard and Datacenter SKUs, the only difference between them being the number of OS instances their licenses will allow. Standard will be limited to 4; Datacenter will be unlimited.

“One thing that we see every year, when we look at the reports, is the VM density-per-server continues to get higher and higher. It’s very common right now for us to see a single server hosting up to 20 VMs,” says Anderson. “As customers increase their use of virtualization, with SC 2012, their costs do not increase. If they’re using VMware, their costs go up linearly.”

Last August, VMware adjusted its virtual machine licensing model to one based on the amount of virtual machine memory, or vRAM, each instance consumed. These increments are multiplied by the number of VMs consuming the vRAM, so the result is a per-VM licensing fee.

120116 MS Private Cloud 01.jpg

Microsoft’s case is essentially this: As your VMware private cloud scales up, so do your fees. As Microsoft’s alternative scales up, its fees stay flat. Though consultants today still recommend a VM-to-processor ratio of about 4:1, arguably that number does tend to go much higher anyway. Microsoft’s estimate of the licensing costs an enterprise would incur for VMware vSphere 5 and related tools, for 42 2-way 6-core servers running Windows Server and a respectable 6:1 VM consolidation ratio over a three-year period, is $3,242,000. Microsoft says its alternative package, which incorporates the same functionality over the same three-year period, would be $424,704.

“With System Center Standard, it’s one price and you have the ability to manage 4 OS instances,” reiterates Anderson. “With System Center Datacenter, it’s one price independent of the number of VMs you put on that server.”

A tighter-knit fabric

It was Windows Azure, the company’s PaaS platform, whose architecture pioneered the concept of the fabric controller – a kind of overseer for cloud resources across servers, and in some respects the opposite of the hypervisor. Now, it’s a common part of private cloud architecture, with Nova serving as the compute FC, and Swift and Glance serving as the storage FCs, for OpenStack. That open source architecture has made significant headway, presenting more of a threat than Microsoft to VMware’s dominance during 2011.

Now, Microsoft’s System Center 2012 will integrate a fabric controller that enables administrators to pool compute, storage, and network switching capacities, and delegate segments of those pools to organizational units in Active Directory. Here is where Microsoft made a difficult decision, knowing that the size of the available market for potential hybrid cloud deployments where only Hyper-V is the hypervisor, is probably next to nil.

“As a design point, we specifically called out that customers will be using multiple hypervisors,” Anderson tells RWW, “from Microsoft, from VMware, from Xen, and with public cloud resources. So we’ve architected the product to be aware of that, but also to give visibility to IT to bring the capacity that is running on multiple virtualization infrastructures, together into one cloud.”

As we saw last year with OpenNebula, about the only way a VMware competitor is going to gain ground is by supporting multiple hypervisors.

Hosting persistently

As we reported last week, we expect Microsoft to soon make generally available a feature that entered public beta in early 2011, called VM roles. This feature would essentially enable Windows Azure to host an application, such as SharePoint or Lync, perpetually even as compute resources are managed and relocated.

One big indicator that this release may be imminent, as Brad Anderson tells us, is System Center 2012′s direct support for hosting applications as services through private or hybrid clouds. Although Azure has historically been perceived as a PaaS service for companies deploying .NET applications in the cloud, Anderson says SC 2012 may be utilized for both PaaS and IaaS hybrid deployments involving Azure. It’s on the IaaS layer that enterprises may host applications as services.

“You can actually create a model that says, ‘Here’s this three-tier application with a Web tier, a middle tier, a data tier, there’s this many servers, and this much capacity for each one of those tiers.’ That model will actually be consistent and applicable into that VM role kind of model in Azure as we go forward,” he states. “So the same model that you build in System Center for your private cloud will be able to run those VM roles in Azure as we move forward.”

As Anderson explained, there are certain “commonalities” in Microsoft’s models of the private and public cloud – components which the company will ensure can be reused in the same way when transitioning between private, hybrid, and public cloud architectures: 1) identities in Active Directory; 2) VM consistency (for easier replication); 3) management tools compatibility; and 4) development tools support.

The Release Candidate of SC 2012 is expected to be deployed among 100,000 servers. Once validation is complete, final release is expected to be within the first half of 2012. “What I’ve been telling people,” remarks Anderson, “is, that doesn’t mean June 32nd.”


VMware is a ReadWriteWeb sponsor.

Source: Microsoft SC 2012 to Support Multi-Hypervisor Private Cloud for a Flat Fee

Bob Anderson, the Man Behind Vader’s Lightsaber, Dies at 89

January 3rd, 2012 01:05 admin View Comments

Canada

An anonymous reader writes with this excerpt from Australia’s ABC News: “Bob Anderson, an Olympic swordsman who staged fights for films including the Star Wars and Lord of the Rings trilogy, has died at the age of 89. … Anderson donned Darth Vader’s black helmet and fought light-sabre battles in two of the three original Star Wars films, The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi, but his role was not initially publicised.” The accompanying video clips are great; I never thought about anyone being in the Vader suit besides David Prowse.

Source: Bob Anderson, the Man Behind Vader’s Lightsaber, Dies at 89

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