Twitter Weekly Updates for 2012-08-12

  • @MandaSwaggie India is 80.5% Hindu, 13.4% Muslim, 2.3% Christian and 1.9% Sikh, you dipshit. #
  • @wilw posts nasty comment about CFA customers, gets avalanche of a negative feedback, hides tweets: #
  • Usain Bolt. #nbcfail #
  • RT @MandaSwaggie: RT if you want me to delete my Twitter, FAVORITE if you want me to keep it. #
  • Your country won a gold medal in dressage? That's cool. Mine just put a robot on Mars! #
  • The Curiosity Rover officially has more touchdowns than the Cleveland Browns! #
  • My Top 3 #lastfm Artists: Wild Nothing (17), The Vaccines (13) & Saint Etienne (11) #
  • TRUTH: @MandaSwaggie is either the dumbest human being alive or the best troll ever. #
  • @MrCraigRobinson It's just you! :p #
  • RT @juicymorsel: 1 in 10 people have tried LSD. Probably because it was easier to get than Sudafed. #
  • LOL WUT? Researcher: Microsoft's MS-DOS doesn't contain copied CP/M code #
  • RT @MandaSwaggie: RT if you think Justin Bieber is untalented, FAVORITE if you think he has talent <3 #
  • Good luck to the #USNWT tomorrow! Bring home the gold, ladies! #
  • Loading up on sugar for the USWNT game! GO LADIES! #
  • Great… Brandi Chastain… the only person who talks more than Matt Lauer and Meredith Vieira! #
  • Japan's national anthem… sounds like a funeral march! #
  • Aaaannnnddd IT'S ON! #
  • Lookin' good, Baby Horse! #
  • US pretty agressive so far. #
  • Aaaannnnd the "USA" chants begin… #
  • @1outside I like it, but it doesn't become iconic until almost the end #
  • Again, Japan looks a bit lost. Go #TeamUSA #
  • @RebeccaCapek Heroes, even! #
  • Whew… that was close! #TeamUSA #
  • Wow! Nice save by Hope Solo (for once!) #TeamUSA #
  • Obviously, both sides settling in now. #TeamUSA #
  • Wow… yeah, that was a handball. #TeamUSA got lucky there… #
  • 35 minutes in, and I've already had 8 mini heart attacks! #TeamUSA #USWNT #
  • MVP to Carli Lloyd so far… #TeamUSA #USWNT #
  • Is there a reason the US isn't using the left side of the field? #TeamUSA #USWNT #
  • Whew. HALFTIME. US up 1-0 I need a cigarette! #TeamUSA #USWNT #
  • And the second half starts… GO LADIES! #TeamUSA #USWNT #
  • Nice save, Hope! #TeamUSA #USWNT #
  • So nervous… #TeamUSA #USWNT #
  • Why so timid? #TeamUSA #USWNT #
  • YES! YES! YES! YES!!!!!!!!! USA UP 2-0!! #TeamUSA #USWNT #
  • I can almost taste the Hawaiian pizza! #TeamUSA #USWNT #
  • Good… Fresh legs #TeamUSA #USWNT #
  • USWNT is 168-0 when leading 2-0 #TeamUSA #USWNT #
  • @1outside You should stick with it. It's an incredble film! #
  • Make it a hat trick for @CarliLloyd #TeamUSA #USWNT #
  • @1outside heh. Yeah, I guess it's a bit late in your neck of the woods! 🙂 #
  • Hope Solo drives me nuts! #TeamUSA #USWNT #
  • Just me, or are the refs getting twitchy? #TeamUSA #USWNT #
  • Whew! That was totally Bad News Bears there. ladies! #TeamUSA #USWNT #
  • You're trying too hard, Baby Horse. Pass the ball sometimes! #TeamUSA #USWNT #
  • 10 MINUTES! #TeamUSA #USWNT #
  • 5 MINUTES… Number of heart attacks: 17 #TeamUSA #USWNT #
  • 3 MINUTES! #TeamUSA #USWNT #
  • 2 MINUTES! #TeamUSA #USWNT #
  • YES! YES! YES! USA WINS 2-1!!! #TeamUSA #USWNT #
  • Wow. Heard the new Fixx album last week, thought it was just OK. But I didn't know that it's the same 5 guys from the 80s. #
  • Thank you, ladies! #

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SPOT stands for “Smart Personal Objects Technology”. SPOT devices used FM radio waves to sync to a time server and receive updated information, like sports scores and weather forecasts. Microsoft, who developed the technology in 2003, hoped that the small devices would take off not only in watches, but embedded in devices like coffeemakers, alarm clocks and weather stations.

Microsoft Spot watch

SPOT devices had numerous flaws.

For one thing, the most common implementation of SPOT – wristwatches – were butt-ugly. Seriously: the watch pictured above is one of the more attractive SPOT models. If you’re old enough to remember those giant multifunction Casio digital watches of the early 80s… well, SPOT watches were just an updated version of that.

Secondly, most SPOT watches needed to be recharged every couple of days, making them absolutely useless for things like camping. What’s worse, the charger dock included with most SPOT devices was bulky, making it inconvenient for travel. Most watches run for 18-36 months between battery changes, and a watch that needed to be charged every two days seemed a huge step backwards.

Thirdly, SPOT devices were only receivers not transmitters. So they could not actively seek information. Once you bought a SPOT device, you went to a website and set up preferences for your preferred location(s) and sports teams. Data would then be pushed to the watch at intervals. If it was late in a game and you wanted an updated score now, you were out of luck. Or if you wanted to see the score for some other sports team, you had to use a computer to log in to the SPOT site and update your preferences (and then wait for the next update cycle for the data to actually arrive at your watch). At that point, you might as well have just gone to directly and gotten the score there.

But the biggest problem with SPOT devices was that, by the time they finally came to market, everyone had a cell phone that could do anything a SPOT device could do (and more). So why pay Microsoft $59/year for SPOT service when you already pay Verizon $59/month for a phone that can do the exact same thing?

It’s interesting (to me) that the SPOT data specification allowed for more data than RDS (RDS, which stands for Radio Data System, is the technology that radio stations use to include metadata such as artist and song name; if you’ve ever seen this in your car stereo or iPod, RDS is what makes that happen). In 2008, after it was clear that SPOT was a failure, Microsoft pitched the SPOT tech to GP makers like Garmin as a way of pushing more traffic data to GPS units faster. Sadly, it was too late, and SPOT tech never gained traction. SPOT watches were discontinued in 2008, and the MSN Direct radio service was discontinued on January 1, 2012.

Top 10 Tunes

Here’s my top 10 song chart for the week ending August 5, courtesy of the home office in London:

1) Ambra Red – “Beauty 606”
2) Marsheaux – “Wait No More”
3) Marsheaux – “Empire State Human”
4) The Magnetic Fields – “Swinging London”
5) Blackbird Blackbird – “Hawaii”
6) Wild Nothing – “Shadow”
7) Crystal Castles – “Plague”
8) Class Actress – “Careful What You Say”
9) Two Door Cinema Club – “Handshake”
10) No Doubt – “Settle Down”

Twitter Weekly Updates for 2012-08-05

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Top 10 Tunes

Here’s my top 10 song chart for the week ending July 29, courtesy of the home office in London:

1) Washed Out – “Call It Off”
2) Saint Etienne – “I’ve Got Your Music”
3) Katy Perry – “Part of Me”
4) Marsheaux – “Wait No More”
5) Wild Nothing – “Nocturne”
6) Wild Nothing – “Shadow”
7) Wild Nothing – “Through The Grass”
8) Wild Nothing – “Midnight Song”
9) Washed Out – “Eyes Be Closed”
10) Washed Out – “Echoes”