Archive for Monday, October 22, 2001

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October 22, 2001

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New-generation wireless makes waves in Korea

Millions of young customers in South Korea are key to the success of a cutting-edge digital wireless technology being deployed by South Korea's three aggressive mobile carriers.

South Korea's CDMA2000 1X service offers an early glimpse into "third generation," or 3G, wireless technology, which promises high-speed Internet via cell phones.

While 3G requires high-capacity networks not yet built, the 1X service in South Korea aspires to perform some of 3G's simpler stunts at slower speeds, using the existing system with minor upgrades.

KTF, SK Telecom and LG Telecom recently bought a $1 billion government license to build 3G wireless networks that can stream video and audio at speeds of up to 2.4 megabits per second, promising cell phone users the Internet speeds now limited primarily to desktop computers. But those networks won't be operational until late 2002 or early 2003.

Site to see: Etree.org

www.etree.org

For followers of bands that allow taping of their concerts, Etree.org offers a way to share recordings with a community of fellow fanatics. The site provides a directory of members and the music they have, which fans can use to arrange downloads from individual users' computers.

The site also offers links to software for encoding and playing the "Shorten" audio files used in concert bootlegs a compressed open-source format that preserves all the original recording's data, unlike MP3 and other digital-music standards.

Although most artists don't allow taping, you'll find bands that range from the relatively mainstream Dave Matthews Band and Phish to the more esoteric fare such as Les Claypool's Fearless Flying Frog Brigade.

Software helps you go face-to-face with your PC

A face only a computer would love. That's what Data Becker has introduced with "Face Lock," the first affordable facial recognition software for your PC. Face Lock is a program that employs some rather sophisticated techniques and complex algorithms to identify your face using an ordinary Web camera and microphone.

And it's very accurate. If you decide to grow a beard or mustache, wear your hair differently or forget your glasses, Face Lock still will be able to determine that it's you. Face Lock measures things that can't be easily altered such as the distance between your eyes.

Holding a photograph up to the Webcam won't fool Face Lock either as it can detect whether it's looking at a two- or three-dimensional image.

Face Lock sells for $29.95 and is available at www.databecker.com.

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