In This Issue:
1. Editor's Note: Second Life's First Slam Dunk
2. Today's Top Story
- NBA Goes Above The Rim In Second Life
3. Breaking News
- Dell Picks Ubuntu Linux For Consumer PCs
- Sober Worm, With New Variant, Makes A Comeback
- Google Gets Personal With iGoogle
- VeriSign Offers Disposable Passwords On Bank Cards
- Familiar Viruses Dominate April's Online Threats
- Sun Preps Next-Gen Niagara 2 And Rock Processors
- Churches Create Religious Alternative To MySpace
- Google Seeks Dismissal Of Viacom-YouTube Lawsuit
- Tibco Acquires Spotfire For $195 Million
- Wikia Hires Jabber Founder To Head Up Open Source Search Project
- IBM Introduces Blade Server-Based Workstations
- Microsoft Shows New Database Technology At Mix
4. The Latest Security Blog Posts
- E-Gold's Chairman Spoke Out Against Cybercrime, Until He Got Caught
- You Aren't Safe. Get Over It.
5. Job Listings From TechCareers
6. White Papers: Search
7. Get More Out Of InformationWeek
8. Manage Your Newsletter Subscription
Quote of the day:
"Wise men talk because they have something to say; fools, because they have to say something." -- Plato
1. Editor's Note: Second Life's First Slam Dunk
In recent months, InformationWeek's Mitch Wagner has immersed himself in Second Life, chronicling much of the time he's spent there and positing many potential business applications for the virtual world. While he's argued persuasively to our readers and to his co-workers that SL has near-term business utility, I've been something of a skeptic.
While most of my questions linger, the light bulb went on for me when I read Mitch's latest SL installment, about a major push by the National Basketball Association. The NBA's the first example I see where SL is a great extension of an existing business model. Pro basketball is the very definition of a multimedia, cross-platform business that depends on the involvement and interaction of its audience/fan base, and where there's already an extensive set of options to "participate" in the NBA through multimedia products (think NBA games for the PS2, Xbox, and so on, to name just a few).
So it's not a leap to think about visiting the NBA area in SL and using a virtual basketball court (H-O-R-S-E, anyone?), a real-world-like shop where you can buy NBA gear for your avatar, a real-time feed of NBA scores and news, video lounges, avatar photos with the NBA championship trophy, an online video game, and more.
I see other indicators that the NBA is doing SL right: corporate sponsorships that are undoubtedly underwriting parts of a very big investment and pulling key business partners into the strategy, plus the league commissioner's comment that it must rethink how "fans consume NBA content." Thanks to the Internet, we live in a content-driven business world. Basketball games are just another form of content, and the NBA is staking a leadership position in using SL as a means to make its content accessible to this audience.
For his part, Mitch weighs in with a blog entry on how the NBA is doing better than most in terms of appealing to fans and building out its community through SL. All his SL blog posts are archived here.
Can the NBA give SL the credibility it needs with business? Will the NBA or other established forms of entertainment get you to jump into SL? Share your view at my blog post or Mitch's.
NBA Goes Above The Rim In Second Life
Unlike many corporate areas in the virtual world, the NBA Headquarters incorporates capabilities designed to keep fans coming back, including real-time 3-D diagrams of games as they're played.
Google Gets Personal With iGoogle
Google also introduced Gadget Maker and seven gadget templates, including a photo gadget, a greeting gadget, a blogging gadget, a list gadget, a countdown gadget, a YouTube gadget, and a free form gadget.
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E-Gold's Chairman Spoke Out Against Cybercrime, Until He Got Caught
I read with great interest about a Washington, D.C., federal grand jury's decision late last week to indict E Gold Ltd., Gold & Silver Reserve Inc., and the owners of these digital currency businesses on charges of money laundering, conspiracy, and operating an unlicensed money-transmitting business.
You Aren't Safe. Get Over It.
The latest news to add to the list of online perils to be paranoid about: Virus writers apparently have a new scheme for distributing malicious code: purchasing popular Google keywords and publishing ads that purport to lead users to legitimate Web sites. Some of the keywords the tricksters bought include "BBB" (for Better Business Bureau) and "Cars.com."
Operationalizing Security And Policy Compliance
This is a discussion of the internal and external regulatory challenges faced by organizations, the scope of these challenges, and the ways in which they can be addressed through better business processes and automation. The solution proposed allows organizations to raise the bar with regard to data security, while adding needed efficiencies.
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5 Top Federal Initiatives For 2015As InformationWeek Government readers were busy firming up their fiscal year 2015 budgets, we asked them to rate more than 30 IT initiatives in terms of importance and current leadership focus. No surprise, among more than 30 options, security is No. 1. After that, things get less predictable.