Put Your Music In The Clouds

Cloud computing is the new buzz so I guess the next logical transition in cloud computing would be to put your music library online and Lala seeks to help you do just that.

On the surface Lala appears to be just another Amazon or iTunes by offering DRM free music (okay not exactly like iTunes on the DRM front) but that is where the similarities end. First off searching their 6 million song and growing catalog gives you several options, you can listen for free once, purchase the song for 89 cents, or pay 10 cents to add it to your online library for unlimited streams of the song. If you later decide to buy the song, your 10 cents is put towards purchasing it and it will automatically be added to iTunes folder for later syncing to your iPod.

Also available is the ability to upload your own music to Lala so that you can stream it anywhere you have access to a computer. A simple program download allows you to upload your playlists which unlocks online versions of your songs from the Lala library and any songs not available are uploaded and stored so that you can access and stream them any time you want.

Is it legal? Apparently so as TechCrunch mentions in their post on Lala.

Lala has also done some serious legal wrangling to help you populate your online library. Using the site’s helper application (available on Windows and Mac), Lala can scan your iTunes music library and add every song you already own to your Lala web library, essentially giving you online streaming access to any song you already have on your computer. And best of all: Lala will give you free, unlimited streaming access to every song in your library, even the ones you’ve acquired in ways that weren’t quite legal. Ralston says that the record labels resisted this at first (”why should we give them access to something they stole”), but eventually came to the conclusion that users weren’t going to buy something they’d already downloaded.

Getting past paying 10 cents just for the ability to stream a song might be hard for some (just buy it if you can’t), but will 89 cents a song plus access to your current library of tunes be the next big thing or it will it be the next big bust? Would you use it?

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Is Your Spam Volume Down?…Mine Either

It is said that spam makes up 90% of all email on the internet. So the news that authorities took down one of the largest spam rings in the world made me think that the numbers of junk mail I get daily would drop drastically.

Wrong.

Who would have thought that one of the largest spammers in the world accounts for only .7% of all spam sent.

In a victory that ought to lower your daily intake of unsolicited emails by 0.7%, U.S. authorities have shut down one of the largest spam rings in the world. The group was known amongst spam fighters as HerbalKing, and, at one point, delivered up to one-third of all spam on the Internet. The global reach of its networks gives you a taste of just how hard it is to find and prosecute these guys.

The two alleged organizers hail from different sides of the planet—one a New Zealander living in Australia, and the other an American living in Texas. Servers in China hosted websites that emails would link to. Operatives in Cyprus and Georgia would process credit card information, and drugs—including Zoloft and Lipitor—would be shipped from India.

Well knock me over with a feather…

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5 Websites You Probably Shouldn't Start From South Dakota

While I am not originally from South Dakota, the 11 years I have lived here plus the 6 years I have run websites has taught me a few things about running a web site from our fine state. With that said there are a few topics for sites that one probably shouldn’t start while living here.

1. Celebrity Gossip Site – Other than Sturgis Rally week, stalking out Sioux Falls or Rapid City Regional airports for celebrity pics would probably get quite boring.

2. Tech Blog – Kind of hard to write about cool gadgets when most aren’t even available here.

3. Traffic Site – Traffic? Other than 41st and Louise, what is traffic?

4. Sports Blog – Somehow I think the Skyforce and Canaries have limited appeal outside of the Sioux Falls/Tea/Harrisburg “metroplex”.

5. Gun Control Advocacy Site – Did I say this was South Dakota?

Of course there are exceptions to every rule but this would be a good list to start with.

Any others?

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O'Reilly Site Hacked

Hacker’s can be a vindictive lot as Faux News Talking head Bill O’Reilly is finding out. Soon after O’Reilly condemned the hacking of Sarah Palin’s email, hackers retaliated by hacking his site and grabbing user data from his user list.

A hacker claims to have cracked the web site of Fox News commentator Bill O’Reilly and purloined a list of subscribers to the site, which includes their names, e-mail addresses, city and state, and the password they use for their registration to the site.

The attack was retaliation for comments that O’Reilly made on the air this week about web sites that published e-mails obtained from the Yahoo account of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin, according to a press release distributed by WikiLeaks late Friday.

Watch O’Reilly’s comments that drew the ire of the hackers:

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Those Darn Non-Christians

OneNewsNow, the “news” arm of the wingnut group American Family Association had a bit of a website issue over the weekend. The site that was “outed” for filtering their AP feed to replace the word “gay” with “homosexual” was apparently a victim of hackers along with other sites rendering them unavailable for a time while they fended off the attacks.

OneNewsNow.com, as well as other sites such as Voice of the Martyrs, has carried numerous stories of Christian persecution in China, as that country hosts the Olympic Games. David Smith is in the IT department for OneNewsNow and says no user information was compromised in the attack.

Reading between the lines from the above quote, of course the attack had to have been perpetrated by mean Chinese non-believers because nobody else would have an axe to grind with the homophobic, anti-choice American Family Association.

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