Five Technologies Worth Watching

Opinion: eWEEK Editorial Director Eric Lundquist gives his insight on some key technology news and offers to look out for this week.

Here are five technologies to keep an eye on.

1. Fon. Remember Crazy Eddie Stories (here is a tribute page: where prices were INSANE!

The folks at Fon are trying to jumpstart their social router movement by selling Linksys WRT54GL or Buffalo WHRG54S routers for $5 or 5 euros.

Just like Eddie, they are losing money on every router they sell, but with a goal of getting one million social routers in business by 2007, they have to move some merchandise.

The catch? You have to keep that router up 24/7 and be part of the social router community which seeks to build one big net on the backs of all that ISP time you keep paying for each month. Its something like virtualization.

Will it work? They have some big names and decent cash behind this one. Maybe it is time to join the router revolution.

2. Capacitors, super, just super. Those folks at MIT always seem to come up with tantalizing inventions that promise to change the world, but always take a little too long to make a big change overnight.

Anyways, capacitors that store an electrical charge have been with us for nearly as long as electricity. The supercapacitor uses carbon nanotubes to increase the storage area to the point where rechargeable batteries could merely be a memory. Read all about it at here.

3. Google reaches deep into library research. A school board in Catawba County wants to know how the names, social security numbers and test scores of students were exposed to Google search crawlers and ended up being visible.

Now I know Google is all powerful, but I dont think those crawlers have yet figured out how to enter a password. This is a legal tale and a cautionary tale that even those smaller databases need to be protected. You can read the story at the Hickory Daily Record here.

4. Unified Week. All together now. How neat would it be if your voice mail, e-mail, IM and all those other message systems were all tied together? How neat would it be if all those systems tied together crashed? And therein lies the problem with unified messaging systems.

Unified messaging requires strong security parameters, real time reporting and redundancy so your workers wont be forced to do something really strange, like think, rather than spend all their time messaging one another in many different formats.

In any case, Microsoft made its case for unified messaging on June 26. You can read our eWEEK report on it here.

5. Is that AMD in the passing lane? Intel has mountains of money to pursue many different product directions. Come to think of it that is how Intel was caught sleeping as AMD concentrated on building compatible chips that could reach 64-bits, have multicores and be energy efficient at the same time.

On June 26, Intel introduced its Xeon dual-core server processor series, which was previously codenamed Woodcrest. After being caught napping, can Intel get back in the chip technology drivers seat?


Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest news, views and analysis on servers, switches and networking protocols for the enterprise and small businesses.