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TECH BLOG

The ‘Connected Lifestyle’ Disconnect

The word "connected" appears no less than 13 times in the press release Microsoft issued to broadcast its DVR Anywhere launch at CES. The software system allows people to view recorded TV content all over the house. What I find astonishing is that this fracturing of the entertainment experience -- t...

One Year Ago: Analysts Fuzzy on B2B’s Future

One of the fundamental rules of e-commerce is that for every dire prediction, there is an equal and opposite upbeat outlook, and vice versa. So it was a high mark of distinction -- for a while -- that not since consumers began flocking to the Web had a phenomenon been reported with as much consis...

One Year Ago: The Irresistible Appeal of Dot-Com Reality

Some people love the thrill of roller coasters and keep getting back in line for more, but others can hardly take a single stomach-churning ride. For dot-com investors who have been yearning to stay connected with earth's gravity, the rough ride may be nearing its end.

One Year Ago: The Bright Side of the Dot-Com Shakeout

The bells tolling in the e-commerce distance seem to be growing louder, but whether the ringing bodes ill is a matter of perception. For some dot-coms, the sound is surely a death knell, but for others, it is the tinkling of a carol. In all the news reports about struggling and failing e-tailers...

One Year Ago: Lights, Camera, E-Commerce!

Originally published on March 23, 2000 and brought to you today as a time capsule. In the film "The Truman Show," the hapless title character is the star of his own life -- an extended TV show that includes advertising spots that are seamlessly woven into the content. ...

E-Commerce 2000: Dredging Up the Positive

The dot-com shakeout is not the big e-commerce news of 2000. It should surprise no one that a raft of new companies that pinned all their hopes on a flawed business model were doomed to fail. The headline of the year is this: "The People Bought E-Commerce." They like it. They really do. In spit...

Napster’s Candle in the Dark

There's something slightly disappointing about Shawn Fanning's decision to go legit with Napster, but it's not exactly the same as David making nice with Goliath or Luke Skywalker going over to the Dark Side.

Faith in E-Commerce

Religion may rival sex and politics as a taboo subject for dinner table conversations, but mentioning money and religion in the same breath can cause even more squirming. Nevertheless, the relationship between church and cash is an inescapable issue for both the tiny house of worship that survives o...

Faith in E-Commerce (Cont.)

While ChurchPlaza started offline and moved to the Web, the WorldWide JudaicaStore began as a pure-play and looks toward a brick-and-click future. The site launched in 1998 "to fulfill the ever-growing demand for Judaica in Jewish communities that do not have access to a local Judaica store," the co...

Where Is the Web’s Holiday Spirit?

If e-commerce fails to capture whopping holiday sales this year, it is going to be for lack of imagination. Traditional brick-and-mortar retailers have always known that people want much more out of the holiday season than the opportunity to get a bargain, and they have made the creation of aestheti...

Analysts Fuzzy on B2B’s Future

One of the fundamental rules of e-commerce is that for every dire prediction, there is an equal and opposite upbeat outlook, and vice versa. So it was a high mark of distinction -- for a while -- that not since consumers began flocking to the Web had a phenomenon been reported with as much consisten...

Out on a Limb with M-Commerce

"Consumers don't think they want the wireless Web yet, but they will." So said Forrester analyst Patrick Callinan, explaining his firm's recent conclusion that there is "latent demand" for Internet-enabled mobile phones in the United States.

Out on a Limb with M-Commerce (Cont.)

Concern over health complications due to radiation emissions from cell phone handsets has also dampened enthusiasm for expanding their use. Last June, the World Health Organization called for further testing to assess the potential risk.

Is E-Commerce Un-American?

A free Internet. It has taken the United States over 200 years and counting to interpret the rights of its citizens, but we're supposed to accept the Web's one inalienable principle at face value. Anyone who betrays it should be condemned for committing technological treason. But my guess is that fr...

What Now for Dot-Com IPOs?

The shakeout shark may not be finished gobbling up little dot-coms just yet, but for reasonably cautious investors, the news is good: It's safe to go back into the water.

U.S. Security Scare: Dumb and Dumber

Everyone must be stupid. That's the only conclusion possible in light of the recent report released by the General Accounting Office (GAO) on the lamentable state of U.S. government Web site security.

Big Bezos Is Watching You

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos seems to be gambling that when it comes to Internet privacy, honesty and ignorance may be a winning combination. Ever since George Washington felled the cherry tree, Americans have embraced the peculiar notion that being up front about one's evildoing diminishes the wrong. If o...

Ireland’s High-Tech Jig

In the 1980s, Irish citizens were leaving the country in droves. The economy was in miserable shape and the country's spirit was sagging. Isolationism and intransigence over bitterly divisive internal issues contributed to a national malaise.

Have You Hugged a Hacker Today?

The Information Age is killing critical thinking. The steady barrage of more facts and figures than any human mind can digest results in absurdly swift processing with little or no reflection, much less complex deliberation. The ever increasing pressure to rush to judgment can lead to strangely coun...

The Web’s Touchy-Feely Fashion Challenge

The difference between "virtual" and "actual" is nowhere more important than in the world of online fashion. Buying clothing, footwear, jewelry and accessories involves far more subjectivity than shopping for products like books, CDs or electronics, and most people want to get up close and personal ...

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