I peered through 3D glasses, read the eReaders, stroked the smartbooks and smartphones and touched the tablets. The Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas is over for another year – and what a realm of the senses it was.
Instead of the usual vapourware, the future was close enough to touch, from smartphone screens to images that leapt out of TV sets. Read more
CrowdFlower, the crowdsourcing start-up that aggregates online labour for data-crunching tasks, has tapped venture capitalists for a $5m Series A funding round.
Lukas Biewald, chief executive of the San Francisco company, said the money would fund expansion.
“We are creating a new global market that will make it possible for everyone in the world to do real, productive work at anytime, from anywhere,” he said. Read more
Peter Marsh reports on the FT’s Analysis page on the challenge UK technology companies face in growing their innovations into successful international businesses.
“Realtime Worlds is among a clutch of small, aspiring UK technology companies, many of them clustered around high-tech centres such as Cambridge, that seem to hold promise in a world where a country’s economic success is seen as being closely linked to the exploitation of new ideas. Read more
Google’s clash with China is about much more than the fate of a single, powerful firm, writes Gideon Rachman. The company’s decision to pull out of China, unless the government there changes its policies on censorship, is a harbinger of increasingly stormy relations between the US and China.
The reason that the Google case is so significant is because it suggests that the assumptions on which US policy to China have been based since the Tiananmen massacre of 1989 could be plain wrong. The US has accepted – even welcomed – China’s emergence as a giant economic power because American policymakers convinced themselves that economic opening would lead to political liberalisation in China. Read more
Western companies are struggling to bridge the growing gap created by the evolution of a cyberspace with Chinese characteristics – as the spat between Google and Beijing shows. In today’s FT, Kathrin Hille reports from Beijing on the growing rift between the Chinese and Western webs.
China has developed its own cyberspace. It is growing less like the internet in the rest of the world, not more like it. And it is not just the baleful presence of a vast, assertive and highly flexible censorship apparatus that accounts for this evolution: the formative forces of “.cn” also include cultural preferences and social structures that are very different from those of the west.