Apr 182019
 
Solving Amazon's Fake Review Problem

Amazon complains theatrically that it is doing all it can to stop the flood of fake reviews that infest its site, but clearly the most casual of glances shows its feeble attempts to be almost entirely ineffectual. Indeed, its problem is even more wide-ranging that it appears at first glance, because, quite apart from anything […]

Apr 052019
 
Weekly Roundup, Friday 5 April 2019

Good morning I hope you had a great April Fool’s Day on Monday.  This year, more than previously, I found myself struggling to tell the jokes from reality.  For example, this story about a tiny town in Denmark with only 7,000 people being the location for a new 1050 ft tower, to become the tallest […]

Mar 292019
 
Weekly Roundup, Friday 29 March 2019

Good morning Did you wake up to notice anything different in the world this morning?  No, neither did I. It was to be today that saw Britain leave the EU, subsequent to its referendum to do so in June 2016.  Notwithstanding almost three years to plan, prepare, and actually implement their departure, they are in […]

Mar 252019
 
Apple Tries to Re-Invent Itself as a Service Company

After delays and failed/false starts in the past, today was the day Apple held a special launch event to announce various new subscription based streaming services.  Although in many ways, Apple was one of the first to offer streaming with its iTunes service, it has surprisingly but thoroughly dropped the ball, seeing new services come […]

Mar 212019
 
Is Amazon Itself the Biggest Problem with Fake Reviews?

The problem of fake reviews on TripAdvisor, Amazon, Yelp, and other similar websites featuring user reviews to provide an important part of helping people make decisions is well-known.  There are problems with both fake positive reviews (where establishments arrange for fake positive reviews) and fake negative reviews (presumably created by jealous competitors). A year ago […]

Mar 072019
 
Are the Sony WH-1000X M3 Wireless Noise Canceling Headphones Better than the Bose QC35 II?

Although other makes/models of noise canceling headphones have at times drawn almost even with market-leader Bose, and some have surpassed their sound quality, none have ever exceeded the noise canceling capabilities of the Bose products.  To date, Bose’s position has been secure as the absolutely very best for noise cancelling. Noise cancelling is tremendously beneficial […]

Feb 282019
 
Google Fi - A Transformation of Cell Phone Service

Google has profoundly changed many parts of our world.  Its eponymous search engine, of course.  Its Gmail service, which now dominates the email field the same way Google’s search engine dominates search.  Other things are not so obvious but still important – for example, it “rewrote the book” on how to monetize and advertise on […]

Feb 222019
 
Weekly Roundup, Friday 22 February 2019

Good morning There’s more craziness this week than I can remember for a long while, and much of it gleefully commented on in the last couple of items below. I prepared a review of a fun little gadget that I’d got prior to Christmas, and was going to present it to you this morning.  But […]

Jan 242019
 
The Cleer Flow Bluetooth Noise Cancelling Headphones

Ever since 2016 when Apple forced the issue by eliminating the regular headphone jack on its iPhone 7 model, some headphone manufacturers have necessarily responded by offering Bluetooth connectivity on their headphones. This is, frankly, unfortunate and totally unnecessary, but for Apple’s decision to make things more complicated for us, and clearly motivated by their […]

Jan 102019
 
CES Report 2019

Ever since 1967, the first week in January has seen the enormous Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.  This year was no exception, with over 180,000 attendees from over 150 countries and over 4,500 exhibiting companies meeting in an enormous 2.5 million square foot exhibition, sprawling over the Las Vegas Convention Center and spilling into […]

Dec 202018
 
Entertaining Oneself On One's Travels

Joe Brancatelli asked several travel writers to discuss what books, music and video they take with them on the road. Here’s our response, and rather than giving you any favorites, we’ve chosen to answer “everything”, and explain, below, why and how. The last few decades have seen extraordinary developments when it comes to in-flight entertainment.  […]