Yahoo to buy Overture for $1.63 billion

"Yahoo announced Monday that it plans to buy search firm Overture Services in a $1.63 billion deal, in a move squarely aimed at taking on competitors in the search engine market."

"The deal calls for each share of Overture stock to be exchanged for 0.6108 share of Yahoo and $4.75 in cash, valuing each share of Overture at $24.63, roughly a 15 percent premium over Overture's closing price on Friday."

"Yahoo said the deal will allow it to expand its pay-for-performance search business and expand contextual advertising throughout its network. Overture specializes in selling advertising links that accompany search results on sites like Yahoo and MSN. It's a market where search rival Google has been making inroads." (from CNET)


Will Microsoft control our information access?

/usr/lib/info has a neat little Opinion Piece on Digital Restrictions Management Technology (DRM).
The author paints a fairly scary picture of how this technology might easily expand to cover all formats and all electronic information, and how it might do so with the blessing of John Q. Public.
Microsoft has started building DRM into most of its content tools and Microsoft could incorporate DRM into its office suite, which could kill fair use. As if all of this isn\'t scary enough, look at Microsoft\'s plans for IE.
Full Story, and discussion.


The Serpent Beguiled Me

I ask that the readers of this service beg my pardon for a digression from the usual line of library topics in order to assist me with a personal difficulty. Today, while I was minding my own business a disaster befell my household.


New tool organizes vast collections of e-mail

SomeOne writes \"The USC News Service Has This One on a new tool created by USC researchers organizes vast collections of e-mail. Designed for the information age, it offers interesting applications for archivists and others. Called \"eArchivarius,\" the new system uses sophisticated search software developed for Internet search engines such as Google to detect important relationships between messages and people by taking advantage of inherent clues that exist in e-mail collections. \"


U.N. Wants Poor Nations to Use Wireless Internet

We've all been bamboozled with WiFi hype. Many people gave their vitriolic responses to a story I posted in March. Now here's an article advocating WiFi as a solution to the worlds problems!

"It is precisely in places where no infrastructure exists that Wi-Fi can be particularly effective, helping countries to leapfrog generations of telecommunications technology and infrastructure and empower their people," Kofi Annan said.

Does he have a point? Is this just U.S. corporations trying to get into a new market?
Here's the full story


Predicting The Future

Lee Hadden writes " There is an interesting article in the American Scientist that
discusses predictions made in 1986 about the future of science, and what
became true and what did not over the next 17 years. There is some
interesting speculation about publishing and libraries- it is seldom done
when some one makes predictions that they re-visit their ideas and show
what came true and what did not.
See: American Scientist, Volume 91, May-June 2003, pages 250-253.
"Science in 2006, Revisited: From grid computing to genomics, the science
fiction of 1986 is fast becoming science fact. There remains equal reward
in the signal and in the noise." By Lewis M. Branscomb
"On one point I was actually too pessimistic (although literally
accurate) in predicting that by 2006 automatic language translation would
"remain incompletely solved." Finally, I correctly predicted the confusion
that would engulf tenure and promotion committees in their attempt to
define publication so they could decide who should perish. Even in 1986 it
was clear that authors would become publishers, and scientists would not
wait to learn the latest research advances until the print materials
arrived in the snail mail."

Read more about it at:
And the original 1986 American Scientist article



Taking computer technology to the extreme

Steve Fesenmaier writes "GPS, satellite phones, and wearable computers have allowed explorers from the poles to transmit images of each step. Great picts and websites for extreme explorers.

NYTimes Has The Story "


All we need to digitize

Gary Deane sent over An interesting Article on A Swiss company called 4DigitalBooks. They make a high-quality, high-speed scanning system with a cradle that handles page turning and protects the book being scanned. The pages are displayed on a nearby screen, where they can be processed in all sorts of elegant ways, from enhancing their images or photographs to smoothing out the curvature caused by the book's shape.


Library Gets Unhooked

Cliff Urr writes "A brief but nice article on a wireless partnership between a library, a sandwich maker and ISP:

"Downtowners hanging out at Wooldridge Square Park, across from the Travis Co. Courthouse, no longer need to leave work behind when enjoying an alfresco lunch. The Austin Public Library has partnered with local Internet provider WiFi-Texas to turn Wooldridge Square -- along with the neighboring Austin History Center and John Henry Faulk Central Library -- into "hot spots" for free public wireless Internet access."

For rest of story see: "


Educators protest government plan to alter popular research database

"Academics are worried that a popular online database covering virtually every topic in the field of education could become much tougher to use under a Bush administration effort to restructure it."

"At issue is a Department of Education proposal to consolidate the Educational Resources Information Center."

"ERIC, as it is called, is a treasure trove of research material about education: It includes abstracts of more than 1 million journal articles, research reports and teaching guides, among other types of literature." (from AP)



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