Tech Briefs: UMD a 'bomb,' Coupland's Jpod, more

Both Paramount and Universal Studios will stop releasing movies on UMD (Universal Media Disc), the format created by Sony for use with the PlayStation Portable (PSP). An unidentified Universal executive told The Hollywood Reporter, "Sales are zilch. It's another Sony bomb — like Blu-ray." While Blu-ray is still set to arrive in stores on May 23rd, UMD may soon join other Sony formats like Beta and MiniDisc on the list of extinct and endangered media.… AtomFilms, an online video site, today said it would create a service that will allow users to share video from cell phones and other portables. The new service is an attempt to catch up to megapopular competitor YouTube, and will be separate from the films area of the site, which advertisers have been reluctant to flock to because of some racy content.… Douglas Coupland, the Canadian author of Generation X and Microserfs, has penned a new novel aimed at "Generation Xbox." Jpod, to be released in the U.S. May 15th, follows six employees of a Vancouver game-design company whose last names all start with "J." The six are "bureaucratically marooned" in JPod, a "no-escape architectural limbo" on the fringes of the company. No word if Apple is going to sue.