Visiting Dignitaries

Dennis Rodman’s Trip to North Korea Doesn’t Seem So Funny Anymore

Totally a serious diplomat. (Photo: dennisrodman.com)

Dennis Rodman might want to be a bit more discriminating in his choice of friends. The former NBA star has only just returned from his visit to North Korea, where he forged a bond with tinpot dictator Kim Jong-Un that’s already gotten him kicked out of a fancy hotel bar for refusing to shut the hell up about the Supreme Leader’s awesomeness.

Now, in advance of a U.N. vote over whether to impose sanctions on the country for its recent nuclear test, North Korea is threatening to unleash a nuclear attack on the United States if the U.N. dares to impose new sanctions on the country. Read More

Schmidt Happens

After Eric Schmidt’s North Korean Jaunt, Foreigners Get 3G But Locals Still Out of Luck

Mr. Schmidt, laying some knowledge on us. (Screencap)

Hard on the heels of Google chairman Eric Schmidt’s jaunt to North Korea, the World’s Most Isolated Country™ is letting a bit of Internet breeze in. The AP reports that foreigners in the country will soon have access to 3G connections, meaning they’ll now be able to fact-check anything their government-assigned tour guides tell them. Be warned, however, that your surroundings are probably bugged six ways to SundayRead More

Metro Tech

Eric Schmidt Told Chuck Schumer That Google Gets More Productivity Per Worker In NYC Than Mountain View

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Senator Chuck Schumer dropped an interesting factoid this morning at a breakfast co-hosted by The Association for a Better New York and the Downtown-Lower Manhattan Association. Mr. Schumer was there to discuss recently authorized recovery funding for Hurricane Sandy, but offered some remarks on the state of New York’s tech industry.

During the Q&A period, Dawn Barber, cofounder of the New York Tech Meetup, asked Mr. Schumer what he thought of the role of the technology community would play in the city’s future. Read More

Political Animals

Every Tech Tangent President Obama Went Down During Last Night’s SOTU

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Despite Anonymous’ worst intentions, the State of the Union went off without a hitch last night–save for reducing the state of political discourse to water gulping memes. Every generation gets the joyless Twitter account it deserves, we suppose.

President Obama has relied heavily on technological innovation to get him reelected, and is fond of citing the industry as a potential source of economic growth. But this is the first SOTU where tech got real air time at the podium. Chances are that will only increase.

Here’s hoping, next time around, the tech bubble won’t be invoked in the same grim paragraph as the housing market. Read More

Political Animals

The State Department Sidles Up to Silicon Valley

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On her way out of the public sector last Thursday, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton ran through a spate of last-minute initiatives, including the Alliance for an Affordable Internet, which seeks to expand Internet access in developing countries where a mere 25 percent of the population (on average) is online.

Although the public-private partnership between the State Department, Cisco, Google, Microsoft, Yahoo, Intel, and the World Wide Web Foundation “barely got a mention” at the podium, it warrants closer examination, argues Bloomberg Businessweek. Read More

Schmidt Happens

Sorry Eric Schmidt, but Your Daughter Is Our New Favorite North Korean Delegate

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Don’t get us wrong, Google executive chairman Eric Schmidt. Your trip to North Korea has been a blast–the highlight of our year, really. Remember that time those Kim Il-sung University students pretended they were allowed to google things just to impress you?! Or what about former Governor Bill Richardson’s superfluous but omnipresent cravat?

But now that you’re free from the Supreme Leader’s distortion field, we have to say your tight-lipped travelogue pales in comparison to the candid, snark-laced account offered up by your daughter Sophie Schmidt. Read More