Another pair of companies have been caught rigging benchmark performance. How does this affect fans? Should this be considered false advertising?
Last week we asked if a company could (or should) engage in civil disobedience to protest political policy that would harm their business. I got some great replies to this question, and here are some of my favorite comments.
Original Netflix vs Washington DC video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yA7bCPtQKG0
Tech and politics will be common discussion points over the next several years. One idea which keeps circling net neutrality is the idea of tech companies like Netflix, Google, and Amazon purposely degrading their services in areas like Washington DC, to protest an moves made against net neutrality. Continue reading Should Netflix Fight Congress by Throttling in Washington DC?
Almost exactly one year ago, Governor Christie’s administration, working with the New Jersey Coalition of Automotive Retailers, put forth a proposal which prevented direct auto sales to consumers. Instead of addressing this issue in a public forum or through New Jersey’s legislature, the proposal was approved behind closed doors with almost no opportunity for public discourse.
Now, one year later, Governor Christie is rolling back that proposal, signing a bill which would allow Tesla to resume retail operations in the Garden State. This new law will allow manufacturers of zero emissions vehicles to construct up to four direct sale dealerships, so long as they also operate one dedicated service location, which Tesla already runs in Paramus.
The law goes into effect immediately and benefits not only Tesla, but any company working on EV’s and zero emission vehicles. Conceivably, Nissan could open up a quartet of showrooms specifically built around the Leaf to also sell directly to consumers in New Jersey.
This is a significant PR victory for Tesla, as the company continues to fight similar direct sales bans around the country.
You can read the details of New Jersey State Assembly Bill A3216 here.
The FCC’s announcement that they would be reclassifying the Internet and regulating it as a utility came with a five page summary detailing the commission’s plans.
Yesterday the FCC quietly released the full set of rules to the public, and including the dissenting opinions from the Republican members, the document is 400 pages long.
We’re currently reading through the rules now to see if there are any surprises, but so far no red flags or severe changes from the initial summary. The rules seem focused on preventing ISP’s from throttling services, and blocking any actions towards creating a tiered internet with “fastlanes”.
There’s also a pretty healthy section on Forbearance, detailing all the things that the FCC wont be enforcing like public utility pricing. Still, even though this resembles the situation we found ourselves in when the cell phone industry was reclassified, which ultimately provided for more competition and better consumer experiences, we can expect the ISP’s and carriers to start mounting an attack now that the rules are available.
You can read the rules for yourself, instead of just accepting pundit’s opinions, at the link below.
From Verizon suing the Government over the Open Internet Order, to proposed “Fast Lane” rules, to now. The FCC has been busy today. First, announcing it will preempt state laws in Tennessee and North Carolina which were preventing community funded broadband efforts.
Second, approving rules which will reclassify broadband internet as a common carrier utility under Title II regulations. Thankfully, unlike the OIO, these new rules will also apply to mobile networks, not just wired ones. The vote was 3-2 in favor, on party lines with the Democrat majority winning the day.
“While I see no need for net neutrality rules, I am far more troubled by the dangerous course that the Commission is now charting on Title 2 and the consequences it will have for broadband investment, edge providers and consumers,”
-Republican FCC member Michael O’Rielly, who voted against the new rules.
We can also expect much crying and gnashing of teeth from the GOP in the House and Senate, with tired FUD and scare tactics, even though companies like Sprint have already pointed out that light touch regulation can be incredibly beneficial to a market as stagnant as our telecommunications industry. You would not have carriers like T-Mobile today, if the cell phone industry hadn’t been reclassified as Title II in the mid 1990’s. You can lead an elephant to water…
It’s a day many supporters of Net Neutrality thought we’d never see, and while there will still be a number of battles to fight over who regulates the internet, and what those actions should resemble, we can at least call today a victory for pretty much anyone who uses any kind of commerce or data driven service online.
The FCC has a five page write up, detailing the new rules.
It’s a gripe I’m sure NVIDIA hoped would have blown over by now, but quite the opposite, as it looks like Big Green is facing a class action lawsuit.
The issue stems from how NVIDIA advertised the GTX 970 as including 4GB of RAM. While this is technically true, only 3.5GB is high speed, and that last 512MB is a separate slow bit. Whenever the card needs to access that last partition, performance suffers.
When gamers discovered the anomaly, it was hoped that there might be some kind of driver or software update to improve performance as the card utilized that last half a gig. Unfortunately, it would seem NVIDIA purposely designed the card this way, likely hamstringing it to distance performance from their top tier card the GTX 980. Continue reading Class Action Lawsuit Filed Over NVIDIA Falsely Advertising GTX 970 RAM
An interesting story has been developing in the use of WiFi hotpots in hotels.
The FCC fined Marriott hotels for blocking their customers from using their own WiFi, powered by phones and MiFi’s using 3G/4G data connections. The fine amounted to $600,000, and Marriott petitioned the commission, asserting that blocking customers was a way for them to better protect the security of the networking solutions they were offering.
The FCC responded with a public advisory yesterday reaffirming their previous stance:
Personal Wi-Fi networks, or “hot spots,” are an important way that consumers connect to the Internet. Willful or malicious interference with Wi-Fi hot spots is illegal. Wi-Fi blocking violates Section 333 of the Communications Act, as amended.1 The Enforcement Bureau has seen a disturbing trend in which hotels and other commercial establishments block wireless consumers from using their own personal Wi-Fi hot spots on the commercial establishment’s premises. As a result, the Bureau is protecting consumers by aggressively investigating and acting against such unlawful intentional interference.