In today’s Bulldog Update of technology news: Comcast offers alternative to cable TV; Bayer adds Ernst Seeds to Feed a bee campaign; Charlotte, Triad hospitals among “Most Wired;” Pao exits Reddit; Obama questions Game of Thrones director.

Streaming TV is one of the new big things, with Showtime, HBO and others offering online options. The New York Times reports that Comcast, the nation’s largest cable operator, is cranking up its own web-based streaming TV alternative. The new service will cost $15 a month added to a Comcast Internet subscription, viewer will be able to see live and on-demand programming from about 12 networks, and have cloud DVR storage and Comcast’s premium movie service, Streampix. Read the whole story here:

Charlotte, Triad hospitals named among most wired nationally

Carolinas HeathCare System in Charlotte and Elkin’s Hugh Chatham Memorial hospitals have been named among the “Most Wired” nationally along with six others in North Carolina and 230 in the nation by the American Hospital Association’s Health Forum and the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives.

Other NC hospitals that made the list were: Mission Health System in Asheville, Cape Fear Valley Health System in Fayetteville, Maria Parham Medical Center in Henderson and Vidant Health in Greenville. We were surprised not to see Duke Regional or any Raleigh facilities mentioned.

Bayer adds Ernst Seeds to Feed A Bee campaign

Bayer Cropscience, which has a honey bee research facility in the Triangle, has added a partnership with Ernst Conservation Seeds to its Feed A Bee campaign (

Founded in 1964, Ernst Seeds is the largest native seed producer and supplier in the eastern United States. The company sells over 400 species of native and naturalized seeds and live plant materials. Feed a Bee partners will receive a pollinator seed mix from Ernst Seeds that includes wildflowers that bloom from spring to fall, providing important nutrients for pollinators all season long.

Bayer’s initiative with Ernst Seeds is the most recent in a series of collaborations that have a goal of growing 50 million flowers and providing additional forage acreage for bees in 2015. One-third of all food eaten by humans is dependent on pollination. Reduced bee habitat has decreased bees’ food options, at a time when a growing world population is putting increased pressure on agriculture.

Feed a Bee collaborations will help ensure bees have access to the diverse pollen and nectar sources they need, especially during times when the fruit, nut and vegetable crops they help to pollinate are not in bloom.

Obama asks Game of Thrones director about character’s death

Speaking of streaming TV, one of the most popular, most pirated, and most streamed shows currently is Game of Thrones, which boasts President Obama as a fan.

At San Diego’s Comic-Con panel Friday, c/net reports, GOT director David Nutter recalled that in a meeting with President Obama three weeks earlier, he put his hands on the director’s shoulder and asked, “You didn’t kill John Snow, did you?”

He told the President, “Jon Snow is deader than dead.” Some fans of the series, however, caution that on the popular fantasy series based on George R.R. Martin’s series of novels, “dead” does not always what it means in our world.

Pao resigns after Reddit user revolt

Things happen fast in the tech world. Interim Reddit CEO Ellen Pao stepped down after the hundreds of thousands of the site’s users called for her resignation following a controversial firing of a popular staffer and attempts to rein in the site’s more questionable content.

Users accused her of censorship. Reddit, like many other sites, including Facebook and Twitter, are trying to balance free speech with a more controlled atmosphere in which abuse, porn, and racism are verbotten. Read C/net’s report here.

The Washington Post offers its analysis here: