Archive for the ‘Maui Developer’ Category

The Fate Of The Free Internet Goes Up For Vote In December

The fate of the free Internet will be decided at a private meeting in Dubai on December 3. UN member nations will argue for or against a plan that would give control of the Internet to the ITU, instead of the current NGO multiple stakeholder approach. Some within the US government have alreadyvoiced their opposition, and now the EU is joining them.

Wired UK reports that the European Parliament has issued a resolution against a potential takeover of the Web by the ITU. The resolution contains many of the same arguments that people like Vint Cerf have said about the proposed UN regulation.

Should the UN and its member nations be given absolute authority over the core framework of the Internet? Let us know in the comments.

There’s a lot of good stuff in the EP resolution, and other nations, including the US, would be wise to wied these arguments during negotiations next month:

1. Calls on the Council and the Commission to ensure that any changes to the International Telecommunication Regulations are compatible with the EU acquis and further the Union’s objective of, and interest in, advancing the internet as a truly public place, where human rights and fundamental freedoms, particularly freedom of expression and assembly, are respected and the observance of free market principles, net neutrality and entrepreneurship are ensured;

2. Regrets the lack of transparency and inclusiveness surrounding the negotiations for WCIT‑12, given that the outcomes of this meeting could substantially affect the public interest;

3. Believes that the ITU, or any other single, centralised international institution, is not the appropriate body to assert regulatory authority over either internet governance or internet traffic flows;

4. Stresses that some of the ITR reform proposals would negatively impact the internet, its architecture, operations, content and security, business relations and governance, as well as the free flow of information online;

5. Believes that, as a consequence of some of the proposals presented, the ITU itself could become the ruling power over aspects of the internet, which could end the present bottom-up, multi-stakeholder model; expresses concern that, if adopted, these proposals may seriously affect the development of, and access to, online services for end users, as well as the digital economy as a whole; believes that internet governance and related regulatory issues should continue to be defined at a comprehensive and multi-stakeholder level;

6. Is concerned that the ITU reform proposals include the establishment of new profit mechanisms that could seriously threaten the open and competitive nature of the internet, driving up prices, hampering innovation and limiting access; recalls that the internet should remain free and open;

7. Supports any proposals to maintain the current scope of the ITRs and the current mandate of the ITU; opposes any proposals that would extend the scope to areas such as the internet, including domain name space, IP address allocation, the routing of internet-based traffic and content-related issues;

8. Calls on the Member States to prevent any changes to the International Telecommunication Regulations which would be harmful to the openness of the internet, net neutrality, the end-to-end principle, universal service obligations, and the participatory governance entrusted to multiple actors such as governments, supranational institutions, non-governmental organisations, large and small businesses, the technological community and internet users and consumers at large;

9. Calls on the Council to coordinate the negotiation of the revision of the ITRs on behalf of the European Union, on the basis of inclusively gathered input from multiple stakeholders, through a strategy that primarily aims at ensuring and preserving the openness of the internet, and at protecting the rights and freedoms of internet users online;

10. Recalls the importance of safeguarding a robust best-effort internet, fostering innovation and freedom of expression, ensuring competition and avoiding a new digital divide;

11. Stresses that the ITRs should state that the ITU recommendations are non-binding documents which promote best practices

There’s a lot here, but the central fears of an ITU takeover are two-fold. For one, the proposed Internet tax system would greatly affect how companies do business around the world. A leaked document said that some nations are pushing for a global Internet tax. In effect, nations would have the power to tax companies like Google in return for being allowed to operate in those nations. One can already see the potential abuse this system would bring.

The other is far more serious, and one of the reasons why nations like Iran and China are pushing so hard for this. It would allow individual nations to control how the Internet operates in their country even more thus leading to even more censorship. Iran is already developing its own private Internet, but a change to the ITU would make that internationally endorsed.

Do you think nations should have the right to charge an Internet tax to companies like Google? Let us know in the comments.

As you can see, there’s a lot at stake here and many are concerned about the potential impact the ITU meeting will have on the Web. Companies like Google are already beginning protest movements and asking for people to submit their stories on why a free and open Internet is important to them.

Following Google’s lead, Mozilla has also started its own campaign to help organize protests against an ITU takeover of the Internet. The non-profit put forth a compelling reason to reject any potential takeover of the Web:

Whether the Internet is regulated by governmental treaties via the ITU and to what extent, is a vitally critical question. In fact it is so critical it can’t be done behind closed doors. The Internet as we know it today is just too fundamental to our lives to leave it to governments to decide its fate.

Mozilla’s mission is to promote openness, innovation and opportunity on the Web. We do this first and foremost by building great products. But, as any Mozillian knows — the story is much more than the latest release or coolest hack. The Internet depends critically on a human network of communities and relationships, and Mozilla builds movements that strengthen the Web.

ACTA and SOPA were expected to pass with little to no resistance, but the Internet proved those assumptions wrong. The ITU would be wise to heed the voice of the Internet, and not go forward without taking its users into account. If not, it’s only a matter of time before it’s deemed irrelevant alongside everything else that refuses to acknowledge the Internet as a living, breathing entity that can’t be contained.



Bing Maps SDK Now Available For Windows Store Apps


Let’s say your building a Windows Store app. You want to be on Windows 8 as soon as it launches later this month. Your app features a lot of map interactivity, or it just pulls info from one of the various map programs out there. What are you going to use? The simple answer is Google Maps, but Microsoft thinks you’ll want to use Bing Maps now that they have released an SDK.

Microsoft announced today that the Bing Maps SDK is now available for Windows Store apps. Those building Windows Store apps will now be able to leverage the power of Bing Maps for their own applications. The possibilities are endless unless you’re wanting to create an app about Area 51. It unfortunately doesn’t show up in Bing Maps.

It should be noted that Microsoft has released two versions of the Bing Maps SDK. The first is Bing Maps for JavaScript. Those who already have a Web-based Bing Maps app should be able to easily port to the Windows Store. Microsoft says the process should be familiar to those who use their AJAX Web control.

For those who want to build native apps, Microsoft has also released the Bing Maps SDK for C#, C++ and Visual Basic. The first release will only provide basic functionality to get Bing Maps inside your app. That basic functionality includes pushpins, polylines, polygons, landmarks, venue maps, traffic, and Synth view map style. The SDK has been designed to take advantage of x86, x64 and ARM platforms.

Those interested in building a Bing Maps app will need a new key called “Windows Store app.” You’ll be able to grab one over at the Bing Maps Account Center. Those who already created a Bing Maps app using a Metro style app trial key will have their key expire on January 15. Those who created a non-trial Metro style app will have their key automatically converted.

If you’re interesting in creating a Windows Store app, check out these useful links for JavaScriptand Native development.

Facebook Releases Graph API Improvements

By Zach Walton


Facebook needs to continually improve its services so that users, developers and investors remain happy. The social network has given a lot of recent attention to its Open Graph and related services. The trend continues today with an update to the Graph API.

Facebook announced three updates to the Graph API today. The company claims that the updates “make it easier and faster to access data from the social graph.” Ease and speed will be key in the coming months as Facebook and Facebook-connected apps continue the march to mobile.

The first major update is Field Expansion. Facebook says that it “significantly improves performance for API calls and reduces your coding effort for retrieving data.” In short, developers can use fewer API calls to get the exact data they need. Developers will also be able to create nested queries. Check out the documentation for more details.

Documentation can only go so far in explaining new concepts though. For those who need some practical experience, Facebook has added field expansion to the Graph API Explorer. You can now play around with the new feature at your leisure without the risk of screwing up your own app.

The final update – pagination – makes data sets easier to read. The change will make definitive indications for when you reach the end or beginning of a data set. The “previous” and “next” buttons will also vanish when there is no new data set to peruse. Facebook claims that the change will lead to “faster request processing times.” You can read up on pagination here.

Facebook was a little slow last week in releasing new updates, but today’s update may signal another wave of major updates to their products and services. I’m still holding out for news of abetter and faster Android app any day now.

How To Get Started With The Google Places API In 15 Minutes

Google Places API

Google uploaded two videos about the Google Places API today. The first one is about getting started with the API, and the second one is a Q&A on the same topic. Together, you’re looking at about fifteen minutes of your time, and if this is something you think your app might be able to benefit from, you might as well check them out.

The documentation for the API, which Google still considers experimental, by the way, can be found here.


for more on Google Places..

 writes back in May
When Google+ and Google+ Pages for business were introduced a little less than a year ago many people in the local search arena began anticipating the day when Google would merge or integrate Google Places and Google+ Pages. Well, today is that day.

Google Places pages have been entirely replaced by new Google+ Local pages. As of this morning roughly 80 million Google Place pages worldwide have been automatically converted into 80 million Google+ Local pages, according to Google’s Marissa Mayer. It’s a dramatic change (for the better) though it will undoubtedly disorient some users and business owners.

Google Cloud Messaging for Android Saves Battery Life and Kills C2DM

Between Google’s big announcements of the Nexus 7, Nexus Q, Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, and Sergey Brin’s crazy skydiving spectacle, its not improbable that you may have missed the news about Google’s new Cloud Messaging service for Android.

Google Cloud Messaging for Android (GCM) is, according to the description on the Android developer website, “a service that helps developers send data from servers to their Android applications on Android devices.” The service can send a message of up to 4 kb to an application on an Android device, most often to tell the application to retrieve a larger set of data. GCM will now handle all queueing and delivery for messages to Android applications.

GCM will be taking the place of Google’s previous mobile application service, Android Cloud to Device Messaging (C2DM). A message on the help page for C2DM has announced that as of yesterday, June 26, C2DM has been officially deprecated in favor of GCM. C2DM is no longer accepting new users, though Google will be maintaining C2DM for “the short term.” Developers will have to use GCM in the future and move their existing applications that use C2DM over to GCM.

GCM will feature several improvements over C2DM. First of all, there are no sign-up forms to use – developers simply obtain an API key from Google. Google claims the new service has no quotas and increases battery efficiency. GCM also supports multicast messages, multiple senders, and time-to-live messages. Developers can get started using GCM over at the API guide on Google’s Android developer website.




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