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European protests against ACTA gain a bit of steam

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La Quadrature du Net have dialled up their protest against ACTA (Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement) in advance of the European Union bringing it into law. A report by the European Parliament has pointed out that ACTA is bad for EU countries. Or as La Quadrature du Net put it:

ACTA is an agreement secretly negotiated by a small “club” of like-minded countries (39 countries, including the 27 of the European Union, the United States, Japan, etc). Negotiated instead of being democratically debated, ACTA bypasses parliaments and international organizations to dictate a repressive logic dictated by the entertainment industries.

The big question is can the European Union hold out against the media industry lobbyists who are pushing for this on behalf of mostly US-owned major film studios and record labels? It has implications for the digital economy and the ability for foreign internet properties in countries like China to connect with European consumers – posing potential free trade issues.

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Interesting video of a manufacturing process

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Nokia (NOKA.NX) released an interesting short film of the manufacturing process for its Nokia N9 handsets.

You can watch it on Tudou here.

A number of aspects of the film fascinated me:

  • The amount of work that was done by CNC machines (the drill-type machines) rather than mouldings to create the polycarbonate body of the phone. It more noticeable given that the phone body is polycarbonate rather than metal and implied that Nokia didn’t want to invest much in tooling – hedging against commercial failure in the marketplace?
  • The line layout looked modular, implying that flexibility was more important than efficiency – again implying that there probably isn’t a blockbuster product expected?
  • The work was being done in western Europe, which would have been relatively expensive unskilled manual labour. Components came pre-assembled so a lot of high-value work was happening elsewhere and the factory shown just screwed things together. I expected the Nokia factory to have lots of automated soldering machines and ‘pick and place’ robots with the end screwdriver assembly happening somewhere cheaper. Pulling the parts together like this implies that Nokia is relying on a lot of off-the-shelf bits in its devices rather than taking advantage of scale like Apple does. There is possibly a distrust of foreign partners who would see the complete phone and use that knowledge to crank out shanzhai versions?


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Links of the day | 在网上找到

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Brand Disloyalty: Recession-weary Consumers Take Discounts to the Extreme – Knowledge@Wharton

Only Connect: Facebook, From The Eyes of an Old Newbie | John Battelle’s Search Blog – really interesting post on the Facebook experience

Daring Fireball Linked List: Apple Lossless Audio Codec Now Open Source

Phone Wars: What the Fans Say « Sysomos Blog – reminds me of how indifferent people were to Windows despite its marketshare

Will there be a Nokia tablet? | – yes Nokia may extend its licencing agreement with Microsoft

Chinese Search Engine Baidu’s Q3 Revenue Up 85 Percent To $655M; Profit Up 80 Percent To $295M | TechCrunch

[FPDI] Japanese Firm Develops ‘Invisible Glass’ — Tech-On! – dampens reflections

IT still hating on Apple: 41% block employee-owned Macs – its enough to get them to lose talent

Gates to students: Don’t try to be a billionaire, it’s overrated – GeekWire“I can understand wanting to have a million dollars, it’s freedom, but once you get beyond that, I have to tell you, it’s the same hamburger. Dick’s doesn’t raise their prices,” he said, referring to the Seattle-area fast-food chain. “But being ambitious is good.”

Apple’s 10-K Shows Asian Stake Sizzling – AllThingsDIn my lifetime I’ve never seen a country with as many people rising into the middle class aspiring to buy products that Apple makes

ARM unveils 64-bit architecture – servers to smartphones

UK court orders ISP to block Newzbin 2 filesharing site within two weeks, Hollywood smiles – Engadget

Nokia And Microsoft’s ‘Special Partnership’ Just Another Windows Phone | paidContent:UK – Nokia needed to do a solid phone first time out, I think its the next set of Lumia phones that will make or break things

Nightclub business suffering some more as Luminar goes bust | Fantazia – but maybe a catalyst for innovation in nightlife

Nokia Is Planning Wacky Stunts To Push Its New Windows Phones – reminds me a bit of Microsoft’s recent marketing efforts that have drawn criticism

Steve Jobs Solved the Innovator’s Dilemma – Harvard Business Review – focus on the product rather than the profit

Digital marketing’s latest dirty trick | FT Tech Hub – – paid for links

Storm Clouds Loom Over China’s Luxury E-Commerce – Forbes

Nokia Windows Lumia 800 710 Phones Pricey Uncompetitive Marketshare –

Nokia relying on Mango smartphones to maintain global market share

ResourceBlog Article: Google Retires The + Search Command

Monocolumn – It’s curtains for glass buildings [Monocle] – I don’t think that the accusations of plagarism are fair, there is lots of good Chinese construction design and architecture

Google Kills Its Other Plus, and How to Bring It Back | Epicenter |

Ralph Lauren unplugged | – copy your own successes

Apple, Google top R&D charts:

Fatscreen is the new flatscreen | – selling flat screens in emerging markets

A Preview of Samsung’s Third-Quarter 2011 Results – WSJ

Recent data shows the gravity of Korean’s debt – WSJ

Sina Weibo Hits 250 Million Registered Users, Plans Spin-Off [Exclusive] | TechRice

New denial of service tool knocks out encrypting servers – The H Security

Broadcom Misses, Outlook Weak – – weak component demand tends to indicate future economic weakness Finally Launching Luxury Retail Website In China –