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Four short links: 28 July 2010

End of Open Phones, More Geek Women, Social-ish Teenagers, and Premium Cycles

  1. The end of the road for the Nexus One (LWN) — The pessimistic among us can be forgiven for concluding that the battle for open handsets is being lost. The carriers determine which devices will be successful in the market, and they have absolutely no interest in openness. Customers are irresistibly drawn to heavily advertised, shiny devices with low up-front costs; they just do not see any reason to insist on more open devices or, even, freedom from carrier lock-in. Attempts to create a market in open handsets – Nexus One, OpenMoko – seem to go down in flames. By this reasoning, we may well all be using Linux-based handsets in the future, but the freedom that attracted many of us to Linux will have been lost. (via Hacker News)
  2. Women in Technology — says almost everything I learned from helping women into O’Reilly conferences. Amen!
  3. Teenagers and Social Participation (Nina Simone) — [M]any older visitors enjoy the vibrancy of social events and are more than willing to share stories with other visitors in the context of a museum experience as long as it isn’t overly technology mediated. There is another, surprising group that is much less likely to participate in dialogue with strangers: teenagers.
  4. Three New Features for Reddit Gold — I’ve been watching this with interest. They asked supports to sign up to subscription program before they said what they’d offer in return. Now they’re developing premium features to see what sticks. They’re offering the ability to turn off ads, no surprise there, but also some features (such as resortable lists) that are computationally expensive. I like the idea of offering subscribers the expensive-to-compute services above and beyond freemium.
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  • John A Arkansawyer

    So now it’s settled, for phones at least: It’s “free as in no up-front payment for a two-year contract.”