I already bought you a cell phone

"Kwout is a handy web-based quote maker that allows you to quote a webpage (or part of it) as an image with an image map. Basically, screenshots that can have links in them."

Imagine a graphic of part of a webpage as normal, except that highlighted links are valid, clickable urls.

The procedure once you've selected the area of the page to grab, requires some work -- it's basic and cumbersome. But there's already some user control and I hope more to follow.

Did I mention that you can also send a normal graphic file of your screengrab straight into your Flickr or Tumblr accounts, like this.

I reckon kwout could significantly assist anyone trying to explain any browser-based process. I'm thinking of website support, installation instructions, walk-thrus. But I'm sure that's just the beginning.

Grab one of the bookmarklets and give it a go!

Congratulations to the folks at kwout and thanks to Orli Yakuel's great Go2Web20 blog for the heads-up.

Worker runs up £27k mobile bill

Sure, the guy's been a complete plonker for not checking the terms of his contract, which quite possibly had been sold on the basis that it was "unlimited." But I'm staggered that Vodafone didn't bother to alert their customer (let alone, suspend the service) before he hit £27k.
That's the real story here, I feel.

[ I guess it would be way to unfair to point out that Three's Mix & Match 900 plan which costs £24/month includes 900 minutes or texts and 300 3-to-3 minutes, free Skype, IM, email plus X-series Silver for £5/month with a download allowance of 1GB of data? Admittedly, you're not supposed to use your phone as a modem but I wonder if Three would even have noticed. ]

It's good to talk... unless you fail to read the smallprint on your new mobile phone contract and end up with a bill for £27,322.

Ian Simpson, 29, was sent the bill for four weeks' service after wiring his mobile up to a laptop to download TV shows - and only then found out his £41.50-a-month deal didn't include unlimited web use.

Last night the factory worker, from Darlington, Yorks, said he feared he could be made bankrupt.

He said: "I just laughed out loud. How on earth could I afford to pay that?"

Ian signed up for a Vodafone Anytime 800 contract and added a £7.50 inclusive internet deal to let him use his phone for surfing the net.

But his first bill had hundreds of extra charges for online use - some at £18 a minute. He said: "My mate told me how to wire my mobile to my laptop as a modem. It meant I could download faster than on the handset and get a proper internet connection in my flat.

"I probably downloaded 20 or 30 TV shows and four albums. I assumed it'd be OK, but they cut me off. I rang up and they said I owed them nearly £30,000.

"If I'd known it would cost so much I wouldn't have done it."

Vodafone said rules state the web package has a limit of 120 megabytes of downloads - designed for casual use to check emails, browse and download the odd song. A spokesman said: "Few customers exceed the fair usage. But it seems clear Ian has run up these charges legitimately."

A source added: "The rules are clearly stated. Mobile web pages use fewer megabytes. That package is not designed for large-scale downloading or computer-speed web use."

But last night Ian blasted the firm, saying: "I cannot believe they would let me run up such an enormous bill - £27,000 would almost buy me a flat where I live. I can't even afford a mortgage so I rent a room.

"Unless they take a sensible approach I don't think I'll have any choice but to go bankrupt."

Vodafone added last night: "The intensity of Ian's downloading was such that by the time our systems flagged anything up he had already racked up a massive bill.

"Our advice would be to never use a mobile as a modem. We will try to come to some sympathetic arrangement. And we hope he won't make the same mistake again."

Source: Daily Mail via TorrentFreak

Om Malik's description of a truly dynamic ISP is great reading.
Now, why aren't there more ISPs taking on the Free.fr model?

Illiad is the brainchild of 40-year-old Xavier Niel, a self-made billionaire (a rarity in the Old World). Its flagship service, Free.fr. (it also owns One.Tel and Kertel, a calling-card operation) isn’t the biggest broadband service provider in France – that honor goes to incumbent France Telecom, which has over six million of the country’s 14 million broadband subscribers — but it has taken the French telecom market by the scruff and given it a vigorous shake.

How? By offering a flat-rate, high-speed Internet connection for 30 euros ($43) a month. That gives Free.fr’s three million subscribers a connection speed of roughly 28 megabits per second over DSL, free IPTV (and a free set-top box), a free Wi-Fi hub, and unlimited voice calls to some 70 countries.

From GigaOm

According to AppleInsider, Apple plans to adopt Intel's ultra-mobile PC platform for a new generation of portable devices. Rumor has it that Apple has decided to use Intel's upcoming 45-nanometer "Silverthorne" chip in multiple new devices in 2008, with the most likely candidates being a next-gen iPhone and a UMPC.

Silverthrone was specifically designed for cellphones and UMPCs, using a mere tenth of the power consumption of a typical laptop chip while retaining the speed of a second-gen Pentium M. In addition to it being super-efficient, it's also much cheaper to manufacture than current mobile chips, which should lead to lower prices (or higher profit margins) for any devices it's placed into.

In any case, Apple seems pretty dedicated to the platform, and with "multiple devices" promised, that's gotta be more than just the 3G iPhone we all know is coming. Could it be a new tablet? An ultra-portable laptop? It could be something like the image up top, which is a prototype created by Intel that can run for 24 straight hours without needing a recharge thanks to the efficiency of Silverthorne. MacWorld is in a couple of weeks, so it's possible that something using the platform will be announced then. Time will tell, but it certainly hints at pretty exciting things.

Source: AppleInsider via Gizmodo

When Alistair Darling prompted wide-eyed panic after announcing the lost discs palaver, there were few more concerned voices than that of our information commissioner, Richard Thomas.

At the time, Mr Thomas, the data tsar who, in the wake of the crisis, has spent the past few weeks issuing warnings about the danger of ID fraud on the internet, described the Government's blunder as "unprecedented and deeply disturbing".

So it has just come as considerable embarrassment to Mr Thomas to learn that he has recently been exposed as being just as vulnerable as the rest of us. In an experiment carried out by an internet security consultancy called SecureTest, it took just half an hour to discover the details of three bank accounts held by Mr Thomas, as well as his age, his home address and his work email.

"What hope have we got if Mr Thomas can't even protect his own identity?" says a spokesman for the company. "I thought it would be an interesting exercise to see if Mr Thomas practises what he preaches. It was easier than I could possibly have imagined."

SecureTest say that they were able to glean most of the information on Mr Thomas from Freedom of Information requests, and from a register-of-interests declaration he submitted when he took the governmental position in 2002.

Which makes you wonder whether Mr Thomas has double-checked his bank statements recently. His office insists that Mr Thomas "uses secure passwords for his accounts".

Source: Independent Online

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