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One of the hottest topics around the web right now is the topic of net neutrality. Now net neutrality at it’s heart is like an equality act for the Internet. It allows every site, small business, or web based network to have just as much of a fighting chance as the other bigger sites. For example, let’s say you wanted to start a site like Amazon.com. With net neutrality you have a fighting chance of someone finding your service and using it.

But here lately several business have been in full support of basically getting rid of net neutrality. One of the biggest companies that has been involved in the fuss is the search engine Google. So what exactly would happen if they got rid of net neutrality? Well you would still be able start your own online site or business but you would be hard pressed to get a fair chance.

What is going on is that Verizon wants to offer (for a price) major face time to some of the nets biggest companies. Think of it as a free pass to move to the head of the class. This could put a serious hurt on the smaller companies that can’t afford to buy this privilege. So should big time companies like Google be able to have access to something like this? Personally I think they shouldn’t.

If anything the tables should be turned and the small businesses should be the ones who get to move to the front. I think this whole thing comes down to favoritism via money. Google can give Verizon a truckload of money that would not only boost Verizon’s economic standpoint but would also increase Google’s revenue. I don’t necessarily believe all the bashings about Google being evil are true. After all, they are a business and they do have to make choices that will allow them to keep their business growing.

However, I don’t feel that net neutrality should even be an issue on the table. Companies like Google are already very well known and really don’t have a need to get their name out there. As I said before I believe that it is only fair that the smaller companies that are struggling should get a free pass. At least until they can get a sizable following at Which point Verizon would cut them off saying “Hey you have enough of a following that you need to be cut off.” The internet was built on hard work and is continued to be built on hard work. That is why those who are still working hard should get the extra push. Not the companies that are already established.

You’re at a quaint little restaurant in Paris, or a beautiful park in some obscure little town and think, “Wouldn’t it be great to let the world know about this?” With geotagging that is exactly what you can do. Geotagging is a form of metadata (think of metadata as data about data, kinda like the description you give your photos on social networking sites. That’s metadata.) that can be attached to a pictures and videos and other things like that. Now unlike a description a geotag is not physically seen.

It is a strand of embedded metadata that gives the viewer the ability to find the exact longitude and latitude of the place where the picture was taken. Then using anything from a GPS to just typing in the coordinates on Google, whoever viewed the picture can pinpoint the location and visit it themselves. But can geotagging raise a question of personal security? Recently Adam Savage (co-host of Discovery’s Mythbusters) took a picture of his vehicle at his home and uploaded it to Twitter. Unbeknownst to him in doing so he also embedded the exact location of his residence.

This is when both security and ethics come along in geotagging. Like anything that deals with the Internet and the world wide web being security smart is always top priority. It is easier now more than ever for some obscure person to find out almost anything about another person just by a simple search. So is geotagging a compromise on personal security? The simple answer to that question is no.

As with anything that is public it is the duty of the user to ensure that any personal info they don’t want getting out stays secured. Now what if you have an instance in which you forget to turn off things like geotagging? I mean we are all only human and I am sure that Mr. Savage had no deliberate intention of revealing his location. What do we do in that case? This is where ethics would come Into play.

For a lot of people on social networking sites they have friend bases comprised of many whom they don’t personally know (and even if they do know them it still doesn’t mean they can entirely trust them.) people are bound to look up the coordinates of someones location whether posted intentionally or not. But does that give us the right to? What if someones phone, by some off chance, accidentally takes a picture while inside their pocket, becomes geotagged, and gets posted? Sure it may sound far fetched but the possibility is still there.

This is the point where the viewer should decide if it is truly ethical to find the location at which this picture was taken. Some will and some won’t. Still the bottom line here is this. If you don’t want your every move document for the whole world to see TAKE PRECAUTIONS. Shut off your geotagging abilities, lock your phone, and be smart. Remember, once something gets put on the Internet it will inevitably remain there even if you thought you deleted it.

In the news lately has been an AMAZING new advancement that china is working on. It is called the Straddling Bus. Estimated to be ready by late 2011 the Straddling Bus is really the future of transportation. The main idea behind the concept is to cut down on pollution (Seeing as China has surpassed the U.S. in greenhouse gas output.) The design behind the Straddling Bus will allow it to literally drive over traffic.

Any vehicle that is around 6.5 feet will be able to pass directly under the Straddling Bus. Even more amazing is that it will be able to hold over a thousand passengers at a time! Now unlike a regular bus the Straddling Bus isn’t like a normal free-range bus. It will be restricted to a track almost like a monorail but on ground level. Is this going to be the next in transportation?

Obviously China does have a lot more advancements than many other parts of the world in terms of transportation and communication. As far as how the bus will be powered? Well the plan is to have it run off of a mix of electric and solar power. This form of power is key in order to have the Straddling Bus being in co-operation of a greener world. Allowing it to reduce use of conventional gases and fuels.

Now will we be seeing these types of buses in America anytime soon? My best guess would be no. The simple fact being that, for one, the U.S. highway system is not adequately designed to sustain any kind of rail system. Not to mention in order for them to made to be able to support a rail system like this there would have to be millions upon billions of dollars spent in order to revamp the entire highway system. Do I think it could be possible in bigger areas?

Definitely! Areas like San Francisco and Los Angeles, maybe even New York could see these buses in areas in as little as 10-20 years. My only concern would be the political issues. Would people really want to have these buses installed? One of the main issues I see would be the possible increase in traffic accidents at least for the first 2-3 years after introduction of the Straddling Bus. I mean if you think about it this is going to be an entirely new thing for any driver on the road.

Whether it is an American driver or a driver from China no one is going to be used to having this huge moving structure travel directly over them. It is bound to be a bit of a shock and startle to many people. I do think that this could definitely fly though. While it may take a few years to catch on completely there is still that chance that it could spread worldwide. I see this as being the beginning of a new age of fast more efficient means of travel.

If you are into any type of Apple following (or stalking as is  my case) you try to be as up-to-date as possible on all things Apple! Word on the web is that Apple is discussing making a newer and smaller iPad. At roughly 9.50 x 7.40 inches the iPad is already a very portable and easily transported device. We’ve all seen it before, the rumors start in the chat rooms and forums “OH Apple is coming out with this AMAZING new product!” To which Apple replies “NAHHH all those stories are strictly fabrications!”

Then three months later BANG! You have yourself the elusive iPhone or iPad or anything Apple has ever created really. But would it really make much sense to make the iPad smaller? A few years back Apple created the iPod and the biggest complaint among users was that it was too bulky. Which in all honesty it was, I mean come on, the sucker was literally a portable external hard-drive! But like all new gadgets it went through its infant stages of being big and bulky (I like to call it technologic baby fat.)

To the sleek iPod touch we have today (Which I ALSO have a name for called Techno Puberty. Gone is the chub, hello curves!) After the creation of the iPod classic we have had several incarnations of the iPod all of which have been either smaller, thinner, or both and all leading up to the iPod touch. So back to my point here. I completely understand apple wanting to improve on the iPad.

Personally I would love to see them add the FaceTime ability on the iPad especially to the 3G versions which would be virtually like a video phone (even thought the iPhone 4 already IS that I don’t currently HAVE an iPhone 4 so I am out haha!) Apple may very well decide to include more features in the next-gen iPad, which we all know there will be a next-gen because any true Apple fan knows that if you don’t like what Apple has come out with wait 6 months and they will improve on it. HOWEVER, I don’t think that making it smaller is really a good idea. Most people love the iPad because it is so large and easy to manipulate. I have my iPod which is great to throw in my pocket but my iPad is great for those times when I don’t feel like sitting with my laptop or watching a movie on a small screen.

If they did go smaller I would say no more than one to two inches all the way around. Of course it would be very interesting to see if they can in fact make something as powerful as an iPad as small as an iPod and perhaps that is their goal!