News Brief: Your Daily Dose of Tech Headlines

Paul Lilly

Future of Wi-Fi Takes Step Back

Wi-Fi access prevails in everything from coffee shops to consoles, but we're still a ways off from having city wide sweeping hotspots, at least of the legal (and free) variety. San Francisco looked poised to do just that, with Earthlink building the network and Google providing the free service. Unfortunately for San Franciscans ( San Franciscinites? ), Earthlink pulled out of the deal , opting instead to downsize their workforce and apparently save money rather than make it. But lest San Francisco feel alone as the only major city to recently abandon city wide Wi-Fi coverage, they can take solace in knowing that Chicago joins them, nixing plans to spread Internet access across 228 square miles. Earthlink earns a mention in the mid-west too, as one of the private-sector partners that would have helped make it all happen, but Chicago was more interested in providing just the infrastructure than contributing " massive public financing ."

And this Month's Nintendo Wii Sales have Sony Crying 'Wii Wii Wii' alllll the way Home

The Nintendo Wii may still be hard to find on retail shelves, but that hasn't stopped shoppers from finding them at a 3 to 1 ratio over Sony's Playstation 3 console . According to Tokyo based magazine publisher Enterbrain , August Wii sales landed at just above the 250,000 mark, compared to just over 81,500 PS3s. Sounds gloomy, doesn't it? But consider that last month the Wii outpaced the PS3 4 to 1, and 6 to 1 just two months ago. So as crazy as it sounds, Sony's actually gaining ground, and with the recent price cut combined with Blu-ray sales breaching the one million mark , the PS3 could finally start finding its way into more than just a few living rooms.

Face on Facebook Fools Folks!

Sex sells, but it also fooled many Facebook subscribers. The question is, why are people still falling for the online diva in distress routine? The latest ploy involves posting several pictures of a blonde bombshell ranging from the scantily clad to the outright naked, and claiming they were taken off of a digital camera he found, asking for help in reuniting the camera with its rightful owner. How very noble, except that it was nothing more than a ruse to promote a pr0n site , and the damsel turns out to be an X-rated model. So how many people fell for it? Tens of thousands were bamboozled, equivalent to " a rate of one every five seconds ."

Kung-Fu Monks Threaten Blogger with...Legal Action

File this one under 'no-joke' (I couldn't make this stuff up). We've all seen some wild tales posted on internet forums, but when one poster told a story of a Japanese ninja challenging and winning a fight against Shaolin Temple monks, it apparently hit a nerve, and China's Shaolin Temple is demanding an apology . But rather than threaten a modern day martial arts showndown if a public apology isn't issued, the monks have learned to fight in the modern age and have hired lawyers to deal blows instead. Who exactly they would sue and for what remains a mystery, but if forum posts of fabricated stories become grounds for legal action, this could spell the end of Photochopped 3DMark scores!

iPhone Unlocked via Software

By now you're all familiar with the teenager that managed to disassemble and unlock an iPhone , making it compatible with T-Mobile. The method outlined in his blog takes a steady handy and a large dose of patience, and for those weary of taking on the mod may soon be able to purchase a user friendly alternative. Some anonymous developers showed off an iPhone working on the T-Mobile network by way of a software hack, and plan to start selling their program in the near future. And because it all takes place in the software, buyers need not ever open their iPhone to free it from the AT&T network, just their wallets. When or for how much it will sell for remains to be seen, but if you're interested, keep an eye on .

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