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The Horrible State of Congressional Websites

The Horrible State of Congressional Websites

Like it or not, another U.S. election season is upon us. Among other things, that means that people will be spending more time visiting the websites of U.S. legislators to study up on their views and voting records. What they’re going to find is not pretty. Congress seems to have found at least one issue that crosses party lines: truly horrible…

The Paperless Office Inches Closer with Amazon Send to Kindle for Mac

The Paperless Office Inches Closer with Amazon Send to Kindle for Mac

Amazon is helping to bring the mythical “paperless office” a bit closer, if only by a tiny fraction. The new Send to Kindle for Mac app lets Mac fans join PC users to bypass the printer altogether and “print” documents directly to their Kindle. The question is, what’s taking the other e-book providers so long to deliver similar functions? Can we…

Cassandra 1.1 Brings Cache Tuning, Mixed Storage Support

Cassandra 1.1 Brings Cache Tuning, Mixed Storage Support

Apache has dished out another serving of Cassandra, the open source NoSQL database popular for handling big data. The improvements speak to a maturing NoSQL database that’s well-suited for big data deployments. This time around, Cassandra has improvements to its query language, and tuning improvements that will help companies trying to boost…

Popping the Amazon Web Services Capacity Myth

Popping the Amazon Web Services Capacity Myth

Amazon’s primary claim to fame is online retail – beginning with books, remember? – and the company has been very effective at growing that side of its business. So effective, in fact, that it’s easy to mistake the Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud-based computing platform as little more than a way for Amazon to make use of excess computing capacity…

Publishers Starting to Reject e-Book DRM

Publishers Starting to Reject e-Book DRM

One publisher does not a trend make, but Macmillan imprint and science-fiction house Tor/Forge’s decision to abandon DRM this July may be a sign of things to come. Tor/Forge is dropping DRM because its customers, and authors, have been asking for DRM-free titles. The game isn’t won yet, but it’s a safe bet that Tor/Forge won’t be the first to…

4 Cool Things You Can Do With Wappwolf and ifttt

4 Cool Things You Can Do With Wappwolf and ifttt

Wappwolf and ifttt are a bit like the chocolate and peanut butter in Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. Separate, they’re pretty good. Together, though, is when the magic happens.

For folks new to the services, Wappwolf is an application that performs actions when you drop a file into your Dropbox. ifttt, on the other hand, can interact with websites…

How U.S. Policy Creates Barriers for Cloud Providers

How U.S. Policy Creates Barriers for Cloud Providers

As cloud storage competition heats up, providers in the United States may want to start lobbying for better data protection laws if they want to remain competitive. The current state of U.S. law, particularly the Patriot Act, has companies outside the U.S. understandably nervous about hosting data on American soil.

Open Clouds: Immature or Good Enough?

Open Clouds: Immature or Good Enough?

“Immature” is one of those code words that execs trot out when they’re faced with disruptive competition that’s likely to eat their lunch over the long haul. For example, VMware CEO Paul Maritz likes to dismiss OpenStack as immature. While OpenStack may not feature parity with VMware’s cloud offerings, it’s likely to be “good enough” much sooner…

Using SPDY on Your Web Server

Using SPDY on Your Web Server

Google’s SPDY protocol offers several advantages over serving traffic via HTTP/HTTPS. But, if you want to use SPDY, you’re going to have to take a few additional steps to set it up. The good thing is that if you happen to be using Apache on recent Debian or RPM-based systems, installing and using SPDY is a simple matter.

What Web Users Need to Know About SPDY

What Web Users Need to Know About SPDY

Slowly but surely, SPDY (“speedy”) is becoming more widely used. The Google-backed protocol, a modification to HTTP, is designed to help reduce latency and bolster security. Even if you don’t manage a Web server yourself, you should know about SPDY and what it offers to you – and the Web at large.

The DoJ’s e-Book Attack Solves Nothing

The DoJ’s e-Book Attack Solves Nothing

The Department of Justice’s (DoJ’s) lawsuit against Apple and the major publishers over pricing may be a big win for Amazon, but is it really much of a win for Kindle owners? Ultimately, the suit may help Amazon shave a few bucks off of e-book prices, but it’s doing nothing to address real problems consumers face with e-books.

12 Deadly Grammatical Errors Startups Must Avoid

12 Deadly Grammatical Errors Startups Must Avoid

If you like stories about the intersection of technology and language, then be sure to check out our Top 5 TEDxTeen Talks.

Can the difference between “it’s” and “its” actually affect the fortunes of a technology startup? You might be surprised.

If you’re working with a startup, odds are you’re wearing a half-dozen hats and doing too much with…

Rackspace Eats Its Own Dog Food With OpenStack

Rackspace Eats Its Own Dog Food With OpenStack

The Rackspace Cloud will begin practicing what it preaches and transition to OpenStack. The announcement is one of the first of many expected out of the OpenStack camp this week, as the developers and companies involved with OpenStack descend on San Francisco for a design summit and conference.

Big Names, Big Bucks Bolster the OpenStack Foundation

Big Names, Big Bucks Bolster the OpenStack Foundation

The OpenStack Foundation process has hit another milestone and is getting closer to reality. In total, 19 companies have now signed on in support of the draft framework and pledged to support the foundation at the platinum or gold levels. The list includes AT&T, IBM, Red Hat, SUSE, Cisco, Dell, Piston Cloud and (of course) Rackspace.

These are…

Amazon Beats Google to a Cloud Search Offering

Amazon Beats Google to a Cloud Search Offering

Another day, another feature added to Amazon Web Services (AWS). This time around, it’s a managed search service called CloudSearch that delivers search results in JSON or XML. According to Amazon, the service will cost less than $100 a month for the lowest tier of usage. Oddly enough, Amazon has beaten Google to the punch.

Amazon APIs: Cloud Standard or Zombie Apocalypse?

Amazon APIs: Cloud Standard or Zombie Apocalypse?

FUD is a lot like commodity open source software. It just keeps moving up the stack. A decade ago, the FUD was all about operating systems and database software. Now? It’s migrated up to the cloud stack. FUD may be mobile, but it hasn’t gotten any prettier.

Case in point, the efforts of OpenStack supporters and Rackspace employees to sow fear…