AOL Blogs Impact

Clay Shirky writes on the potential impact of AOl unleashing blogging to its 30+ million users:

I’m betting on a combination, where most AOL users cluster; where they have have connections to a few of the current highest ranked weblogs, pushing them still further up the charts; and where they place some of their own most popular users and sites among the Top 100.

This is the same pattern we had with the web itself, where most early websites spent alot of time explaining what the web was. Later, when we’d soaked in it long enough, the web became a tool for pages about other things. Displacement but not disruption, in other words, with less popularity for the bloggers-blogging-about-blogging, and more for the InstaPundits and Talking Points of the world.

Jeff Jarvis provided a preview of AOL Journals, which will be released later in the year.

Intel and WiFi

NYTimes writes about Intel’s big bet:

Wi-Fi has certainly been a disruptive force at Intel. The industry and analysts have focused their attention on the current frenzy to build wireless Internet locations, known as hot spots, at airports, coffeehouses and hotels. But Intel has a much bolder wireless plan: it wants to close the so-called last-mile gap between homes and the Internet backbone with cheap, super-fast connections so that businesses can deliver interactive entertainment and a host of other digital products and services right into America’s living rooms and dens.

Mr. Barrett sketched out a portrait of a market that it is growing rapidly.

There are now about 40 million Wi-Fi users, he said, and new access points are selling at the rate of about 15,000 a day, which makes Wi-Fi a much faster-growing technology than cellular telephony.

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Grid Computing

NYTimes writes:

This month, grid computing moved further toward the commercial mainstream when the Globus Project released new software tools that blend the grid standards with a programming technology called Web services, developed mainly in corporate labs, for automated computer-to-computer communications.

The long-term grid vision is that anyone with a desktop machine or hand-held computer can have the power of a supercomputer at his or her fingertips. And small groups with shared interests could find answers to computationally complex problems as never before.

Imagine, for example, a handful of concerned citizens running their own simulation of the environmental impact of a proposed real-estate development in their community. They wouldn’t need their own data center or consultants. They would describe what they want, and intelligent software would find the relevant data and summon the computing resources needed for the simulation.

The grid is widely regarded as the next stage for the Internet after the World Wide Web. The Web is the Internet’s multimedia retrieval system, providing access to text, images, music and video. The promise of the grid is to add a problem-solving system.

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