Sunday, February 27, 2011

Business News - 27 February 2011

  • What Your Gym Behavior Says About You
    Sun, 27 Feb 2011 05:25:56 -0800
  • Saudi Stocks Slump to 9-Month Low on Libya, Lead Mideast Decline
    Sun, 27 Feb 2011 05:18:01 -0800
    Saudi Arabia’s benchmark stock index plunged to a nine-month low, leading a drop in Middle East markets, on concern clashes in Libya that caused oil prices to surge to a more than two-year high will stall a global recovery.
  • BlueScope Calls Australia Carbon Tax Plan ‘Economic Vandalism’
    Sun, 27 Feb 2011 05:17:22 -0800
    BlueScope Steel Ltd., Australia’s biggest steelmaker, said the government’s planned carbon tax will reduce its competiveness as it battles high raw-material costs and the stronger Australian dollar.
  • Markets: Confidence To be Tested Again After Last Week's Fall
    Sun, 27 Feb 2011 05:14:05 -0800
    It's not going to get any easier for global markets in the coming week.Global sharemarkets might have had the roughest week of the year so far last week, thanks to the unrest in Libya and other Middle Eastern countries.This week however they not only have to contend with the deepening crisis in Libya and the impact that will have on oil pries and investor sentiment, but there are a couple of .
  • Commodities: Oil and Gold Still Strong, But Corn, Wheat and Others Jump
    Sun, 27 Feb 2011 05:14:05 -0800
    Oil prices ended higher but off their peaks on Friday after Saudi Arabia let it be known that it had raised production by around 8% to
  • Earnings: Dec 31 A Bit Better than Thought
    Sun, 27 Feb 2011 05:14:05 -0800
    The Australian December half earnings reporting season finished today with several large groups reporting interim of full year results See the Diary).But the real story will again be the flood of poor reports, mostly from small miners, that will be released in their hundreds during the day and into this evening.Failure to release reports could see the company involved suspended by the ASX.QR Natio.
  • Results: Behind The Story At Woolies And Harvey Norman
    Sun, 27 Feb 2011 05:14:04 -0800
    The interim results from Woolworths and Harvey Norman
  • DIARY: Local Rates, Growth, US Jobs, Oil, Ireland
    Sun, 27 Feb 2011 05:14:04 -0800
    The economy dominates Australia this week, with the Reserve Bank board meeting tomorrow, the fourth quarter economic growth figures out on Wednesday, after the current account figures and other data today and tomorrow.In the US there's some important economic data, with the February jobs figures on Friday night, our time, dominating.The events in the Middle East will be watched closely for si.
  • Bonds Collide With Stevens as Rate Bets Rise: Australia Credit
    Sun, 27 Feb 2011 05:07:38 -0800
    The Reserve Bank of Australia is showing no signs of raising interest rates at a time when fixed- income markets are signaling the biggest increase in inflation expectations in more than a year.
  • Irish Fine Gael, Labour May Form Coalition in Power Shift
    Sun, 27 Feb 2011 03:15:09 -0800
    Ireland’s two largest opposition parties may form a coalition government after the collapse of the banking system and an international bailout handed Fianna Fail a record election defeat.
  • VIDEO: Egypt counts the cost of unrest
    Sun, 27 Feb 2011 03:11:39 -0800
    As Egypt gets back to work, it is counting the cost of the unrest. Ben Thompson asks if the economy can move forward?
  • Warning on early pensions access
    Sun, 27 Feb 2011 03:06:02 -0800
    The National Association of Pension Funds says letting people dip into their pension pots could leave them reliant on the state in retirement.
  • UN Security Council Imposes Sanctions Against Libya’s Qaddafi
    Sun, 27 Feb 2011 02:56:01 -0800
    The United Nations Security Council voted 15-0 to freeze the foreign assets of Libya’s Muammar Qaddafi and four aides and to bar them from traveling, in the broadest international effort to halt his regime’s attacks on protesters.
  • China Lowers Growth Target as Wen Calls for Sustainability
    Sun, 27 Feb 2011 02:19:01 -0800
    Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao said the nation set a lower growth target for the period from 2011 through 2015 than in the previous five years as part of efforts to create a more sustainable economy.
  • Irish Fine Gael, Labour May Form Coalition in Power Shift
    Sun, 27 Feb 2011 02:17:01 -0800
    Ireland’s two largest opposition parties may form a coalition government after the collapse of the banking system and an international bailout handed Fianna Fail a record election defeat.
  • A1 Grand Prix race firm faces fraud inquiry
    Sun, 27 Feb 2011 02:11:34 -0800
    The Serious Fraud Office has started looking into companies behind the A1 Grand Prix Series - the collapsed rival to Formula One - whose creditors still claim to be owed more than £400m.

  • China lowers growth rate target
    Sun, 27 Feb 2011 01:35:45 -0800
    Chinese Prime Minister Wen Jiabao says China is lowering its annual economic growth target and is determined to contain inflation, as discontent grows over price rises.
  • VIDEO: India Budget: A tale of two families
    Sun, 27 Feb 2011 01:26:18 -0800
    Two very different Indian families tell Nidhi Dutt what they hope to gain from the new Indian budget.
  • China's Wen puts social stability at heart of economy
    Sun, 27 Feb 2011 00:47:54 -0800
    BEIJING (Reuters) - Fighting inflation is a priority for China and the government must ward off threats to social stability stemming from rapid price increases and pressure to raise the value of the...

Technical News - 27 February 2011

  • Kinect and the RRoD ... coincidence or not?
    February 27, 2011
    While Microsoft denies that there is any connection between its new motion-sensing controller Kinect and Xbox consoles suffering the dreaded Red Ring of Death (RRoD) failures, the complaints from...
  • Sun's McNealy, Zander riff on 1995 buyout attempt for Apple
    February 26, 2011
    Recalling Sun's heydays in the mid-'90s, former CEOs Scott McNealy and Ed Zander waxed nostalgic about the time they almost bought Apple Computer.
  • Boot Camp: Apple's refreshed MacBook Pro and Air models Windows 7 only
    February 26, 2011
    According to an Apple support note released Friday, the new MacBook Pro models and the recently refreshed MacBook Air won't support Windows XP and Windows Vista.
  • Armed Gaddafi opponents hold town west of Tripoli
    February 27, 2011
    ZAWIYAH, Libya (Reuters) - Armed men opposed to Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi were in control of Zawiyah, about 50 km (30 miles) west of the capital Tripoli, on Sunday and their red, green and black flag flew above the town.

  • Consumers Buy Less Tech Stuff, Keep It Longer
    February 27, 2011
    Hugh Pickens writes writes "The NY Times reports that there are indications that a sea change is taking place in consumer behavior as a result of the great recession: Americans are buying less tech stuff and making it last longer (reg. may be required). Although in many cases the difference is mere months, economists and consumers say the approach may outlast a full recovery and the return of easy credit, because of the strong impression the downturn has made on consumers. For example Patti Hauseman
  • Turkey's modern Islamist movement founder Erbakan dies
    February 27, 2011
    ISTANBUL (Reuters) - Former Turkish Prime Minister Necmettin Erbakan, the founder of Turkey's modern Islamist movement, died from heart failure on Sunday, aged 85.

  • Ireland's victorious opposition eyes government options
    February 27, 2011
    DUBLIN (Reuters) - Ireland's victorious opposition party Fine Gael set the stage on Sunday for coalition talks with its traditional partner Labour next week after a historic election that crushed its long-time rival Fianna Fail.

  • Mac solid-state TRIM support to arrive in Mac OS X Lion
    February 26, 2011
    According to reports, support for the TRIM command used by modern solid-state drives (SSD) will arrive with the release of Mac OS X Lion, aka Mac OS X Version 10.7. The software improves the write...
  • Egypt to call March referendum this week: lawyer
    February 27, 2011
    CAIRO (Reuters) - Egypt's ruling military council plans to hold a snap referendum next month on constitutional amendments, a lawyer who helped draft them said on Sunday.

  • China protest call smothered in police blanket
    February 27, 2011
    BEIJING/SHANGHAI (Reuters) - An online call for anti-government protests across China on Sunday instead brought an emphatic show of force by police determined to deter any buds of the kind of unrest that has shaken the Middle East.

  • North Korea threatens military action over SKorea campaign
    February 27, 2011
    SEOUL (Reuters) - North Korea will fire across a land border with South Korea if Seoul continues its anti-North psychological campaign, the North's official media said on Sunday ahead of an annual, joint military drill between the United States and South Korea.

  • Sun storm may be 'global Katrina'
    February 27, 2011
    The risk of a devastating space storm wreaking havoc like a "global Katrina" and costing the world trillions of pounds should be taken "seriously", claims Britain's top scientist.

  • This Blog Gets Labeled as a ‘Content Farm’
    February 27, 2011
    It was quite an eventful week.
    First my Facebook account got hacked and on the same day, Google rolled out a major change in their algorithms designed to push down the search rankings of content farms or sites that have low-quality pages.
    Amit Singhal and Matt Cutts wrote on the Google blog:
    This update is designed to reduce rankings for low-quality sites—sites which are low-value add for users, copy content from other websites or sites that are just not very useful. At the same time, it will provide better rankings for high-quality sites—sites with original content and information such as research, in-depth reports, thoughtful analysis and so on.
    Unfortunately (and surprisingly), this change has had a major impact* on organic traffic flowing through Google to Digital Inspiration as well. See this chart from Google Analytics.
    google search traffic
    Google has rolled out their new algorithm in US only but once the changes are propagated to other country-specific Google sites - like and – the organic traffic from Google to Digital Inspiration would take an even bigger hit.
    The AdSense-centric business model of this blog, where online advertising revenues are more or less based on the number of page-views, will obviously suffer because of this change in search engine rankings.
    However, what makes me more sad is the fact that Google algorithms have labeled Digital Inspiration as a ‘content farm’ despite having tons of high-quality and original articles. And there's little I can do about it.
    Tough times ahead!
    [*] To know if these recent changes have had any impact on your site’s ranking in Google, go to Google Analytics –> Traffic Sources –> Search Engines and choose “Google (organic)” as the traffic source.
    Facebook    Twitter    Digital Inspiration @labnol
    This article, titled This Blog Gets Labeled as a ‘Content Farm’, was originally published at Digital Inspiration under Google, Internet.

  • U.N. Security Council imposes sanctions on Gaddafi
    February 27, 2011
    TRIPOLI/UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - The U.N. Security Council unanimously imposed travel and asset sanctions on Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi and close aides, ratcheting up pressure on him to quit before any more blood is shed in a popular revolt against his rule.

  • UK Gov't Says Open Standards Must Be Royalty Free
    February 27, 2011
    An anonymous reader writes "The H reports on an interesting development in the United Kingdom's procurement policy. From the article: 'New procurement guidance from the UK government has defined open standards as having "intellectual property made irrevocably available on a royalty free basis." The document, which has been published by the Cabinet Office, applies to all government departments and says that, when purchasing software, technology infrastructure, security or other goods and services
  • China's Wen puts social stability at heart of economy
    February 27, 2011
    BEIJING (Reuters) - Fighting inflation is a priority for China and the government must ward off threats to social stability stemming from rapid price increases and pressure to raise the value of the yuan, Premier Wen Jiabao said on Sunday.