Saturday, September 22, 2007


My pick of the week's top 5 items of interest:

  1. Evidence that studying really does matter: A recent study finds that college freshman who have a roommate with a video game console spent an average of 40 minutes less time studying per day than those freshman whose roommate did not have a game machine. They also scored 0.241 points lower (on a 4.0 scale) at the end of their first semester. It's not that the games were causing the students' minds to waste away... they were simply eating into the time the students would normally have spent studying.

  2. The digital smiley face :-) turned 25 a few days ago. Carnegie Mellon University professor Scott E. Fahlman claims to have been the first to use it in a computer message, and no one else has refuted that claim. Of course, proving you were the one to have invented the happy face is a difficult task; it would be rare for anyone to have access to a personal digital message from over 25 years ago.

  3. Kudos to the New York Times who recognized the potential to greatly increase revenue by unlocking their subscription-based content to the public.

  4. A Microsoft employee prematurely posted upcoming changes to Search Live on a blog. LiveSide caught it before it was pulled by MS.

  5. And finally, Microsoft lost big in Europe: $700 million and some change.