LED traffic lights may cause accidents

As more and more counties are replacing power hungry incandescent traffic lights with LEDs, the northern states are discovering a potentially serious problem that is believed to have already caused at least one death in a car accident.

Google Chrome OS: Gcrap reveals the next Netscape

Analyst Opinion - It can be entertaining to watch companies that have learned to manage expectations. They set low bars, generally fail at what they attempt, and yet the folks in charge of the programs often get bonuses and rewards as if they had successfully executed. I believe the Windows Vista mess was mainly caused by Microsoft’s behavior. Similar behavior effectively killed a long line of companies starting with DEC and running all the way to Sun. Google’s new Chrome OS looks to be another example of people more interested in pretending to be doing something, rather than actually doing it well.  

Nintendo Wii surrenders market share in weak game console market

Is it just a blip or the beginning of a trend? NPD’s U.S. game console shipment numbers for June showed a slight uptick in sales over the catastrophic results for the preceding two months, but it seems that both Microsoft and Sony are gaining much faster than Nintendo. The Wii dropped to its weakest competitive position since January 2008.

3G netbook market growing at rapid pace, iSuppli says

Market researchers continue to believe that the netbook category will be posting significant shipment growth. iSuppli said that 3G netbooks shipments alone will top 17 million this year. Good news for Google and its Chrome OS, cloud applications and its investment in WiMax company Clearwire?

Browser market share update: Firefox 3.5 eclipses Chrome

Mozilla can celebrate a decent launch of its latest browser, Firefox 3.5. The software has cleared the 2% barrier over the weekend, topping Google’s Chrome browser for the very first time. However, even if Mozilla’s version transitions seems to be on track, Firefox has lost steam and is not gaining market share as quickly anymore as in previous months.

The death of the netbook

Analyst Opinion - I’m traveling this week and noted that the guy traveling next to me, who owns his own company, is using an Acer netbook. It is his primary travel computer.  He purchased a 12-cell aftermarket battery for it and gets 10 to 12 hours of battery life and, according to him, this is all he needs. Most of the analysts I travel with have noted that the distinction between netbooks and notebooks has largely vanished. 

Bing to define Microsoft’s capability to innovate

Opinion – Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer yesterday gave a casual speech in front of more than 1500 members and guests of the Executives Club of Chicago, explaining the importance of innovation during a “reset” of the economy. The pitch for Microsoft products was careful, and, not surprisingly, focused on the next Xbox and Bing. What about Windows 7?

Broadband access gets more expensive, study finds

Access to fast Internet connection has jumped over the past year. A new study released by the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project that 63% of Americans now use broadband Internet at home. But while increasing broadband penetration may not be that surprising, pricing is. Consumers are confronted with rising cost for their broadband connections – and cost is now the main barrier for continued broadband connection, indicating another imminent digital divide.

Microsoft does Reality TV with Jack and Suzy Welch

Analyst Opinion - This is an interesting idea.  Do a reality TV program on the web using Jack Welch, who is arguably a more famous success than Donald Trump and focus on a real problem. In this initial segment. Hertz Connect is the target for their efforts. There is no Microsoft product placement in the show, but ads show up on the side making general statements about Microsoft's technology. The layout is creative, the talent is world class with Jack Welch, but the question is: Does it work?

Is AT&T just a drag for Apple?

Opinion – I just hate saying “told you so”. But it seems that even Apple’s patience with AT&Ts willingness to keep pace with mobile devices innovation is coming to an end, if I take the liberty to interpret the dramatic omission of the carrier from yesterday’s keynote in this way. AT&T and Apple have been in a love and hate relationship from the very beginning, but as the pain factor climbs, Apple may be weighing its options and simply ditch Apple. It may be time to start looking elsewhere.

Bing, Bing, Bing! Microsoft’s search market share climbs

I still doubt that Bing will be enough for Microsoft to attack Google’s dominating role in the search market, but if we believe data published by Comscore then it seems that Bing has increased Microsoft search market share and, more importantly, it was able to hold on to those gains in the first week after launch.

Live Blog: IBM CEO Sam Palmisano on Building a Smarter Planet Initiative

At 11:00 a.m. EDT Sam Palmisano, Chairman, President and CEO of IBM along with Dr. Fareed Zakaria, editor of Newsweek International, columnist and CNN host will host "The Business Partner Leadership Agenda: Building a Smarter Planet" webcast. Join TG Daily’s live blog to follow the event.

Dinging Bing: 5 reasons why Microsoft’s new search engine will fail

Opinion – Now that we all had a chance to play with Microsoft’s new Bing engine, are we ready to ditch Google? Are we binging instead of googling? I’d like you to chime in and let us know what you think of the search discover engine, but here is some food for thought and why I am pretty sure that Bing will be just another name in Microsoft’s odyssey for a search engine that can conquer the world. 

Search me! Bing, Hakia & Co. keep Google honest

Analyst Opinion - Finally, search is cool again. The search engine space, long considered the exclusive domain of Google, is suddenly hot with innovation. Last week’s launch of the Wolfram|Alpha computational knowledge engine may not have repaved the search landscape, but it sends a strong message that the way we find stuff online is about to change. Wolfram|Alpha isn’t alone: Alternative services like Cuil, Hakia and Kosmix may not be popularly used verbs yet, but they all point toward an accelerating rate of change in search.

Can Palm or Zune beat Apple?

Analyst Opinion - We are on final countdown for the launch of the Palm Pre which was the device that easily took the entire buzz from CES this year much as the iPhone initially did a few years ago.  In addition, Microsoft has launched an in-your-face competitive ad using a financial argument to drive on Apple's inability to do a subscription music service.   This ad would have likely been vastly more powerful before the Slacker service was available on the iPod Touch and iPhone.  This ad campaign comes in advance of what is expected to be the killer Zune, a product that bridges the connected Xbox experience with a music player.

Dateline 2600 - one of our civilizations is missing

The IDC report that we covered earlier today said that digital content doubles every 18 months, but there's a problem with this, a big problem.

Computers ain’t anything like cars

Analyst Opinion - When I wrote last week’s column suggesting Apple consider a move downmarket to expand its computer/OS market share and avoid being perpetually marooned in niche territory, I suspected it might touch off a bit of a kerfuffle. But like any debate involving Apple, small kerfuffles quickly become big ones. Few companies these days generate the level of passion that Apple does.

Intel and AMD may be radically changing the future of the PC

Analyst Opinion - We had a major reorganization at AMD last week that should not only make them more efficient. It may also make them the leading change agent in the server space as we move to a more cloud-based computing model.  However, that begs a change on the client as well and interestingly enough, I was at Intel this week for an update on their Digital Home initiative and think this is the best effort I have seen from them in over a decade.

Will Apple’s Get a Mac commercials ever get old? Yes.

Opinion – Yawn. Apple replied to Microsoft’s Laptop Hunters ads. Apple replied with Megan to Lauren and a PC Choice Chat to highlight the weaknesses of a PC. And yes, Apple forgot to mention its own weaknesses. And we wonder how dumb computer buyers really are why Apple’s creative team is convinced that these ads are still funny. We got it, Apple. Time to move on.

Apple, go cheap or go home: Time to dump the elitist strategy

Analyst Opinion - Saying Microsoft’s Steve Ballmer is prone to hyperbole is like saying deep fried bacon strips do little to encourage a heart-healthy lifestyle. We all know it’s obvious, so we’re hardly surprised when we read the headlines.