Posts

Showing posts from April, 2014

Hulu promises free and full TV episodes for mobile devices

Image
Screenshot by Lance Whitney/CNET
Hulu is expanding its free video viewing options for mobile users.
Starting this summer, the site will unveil a selection of ad-supported full TV episodes for all mobile users, most notably those who don't have a Hulu Plus subscription, Hulu revealed in a blog posted Wednesday. Currently, full episodes are available free to non-subscribers only on the desktop, while non-paying mobile users can watch only clips of TV shows.
'With our re-imagining of mobile viewing, we want you, our viewers, to have more access to the content you love, right at your fingertips,' Hulu CEO Mike Hopkins said in the blog.
Hopkins also teased a new version of the Hulu Plus iPhone app slated for release this summer. And the CEO touted the reach of Hulu Plus, which now numbers more than 6 million subscribers.
'Hulu Plus is now accessible on more than 400 million internet-connected devices in the United States, including Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Chromecast, and most r…

LG confirms G3 smartphone

Image
Article By: Staff ReporterWed, 30 Apr 2014 10:29 AM The LG G2 smartphone.
LG has confirmed the existence of the LG G3 smartphone in an earnings report.
The report, spotted by AndroidCentral, names the LG G3, as well as a Q2 2014 launch date.
'Higher revenues are expected in the second quarter with the release of the flagship LG G3 smartphone and wider roll-out of the mass-tier L Series III,' read the report.
The tech community is awash with new G3 rumours, with a 2560x1440 5.5-inch screen being the most radical claim.
It's not the only LG-related news today, with the company reportedly confirming a European launch and price for its G Watch.
According to PhoneArena, the European launch is set to take place in June, with a suggested price of €199.

Red Hat Acquires Open

Image
By Sean Michael Kerner | Posted 2014-04-30 Email Print

The lead commercial vendor behind the popular open-source Ceph filesystem gets picked up by Red Hat.
Linux vendor Red Hat today announced the acquisition of privately held open-source storage firm Inktank for approximately $175 million in cash. The deal is Red Hat's first major acquisition of 2014 and is the second major storage vendor acquisition for Red Hat in the last three years. Inktank is the lead commercial vendor behind the open-source Ceph distributed storage filesystem created by Sage Weil, who is also the company's CEO. The open-source Ceph project officially got under way in 2006 and became part of the mainline Linux 2.6.34 kernel in May of 2010. Weil founded Inktank in May of 2012 as a way to help support companies that want to run Ceph in production environments. Weil is also a co-founder of hosting provider Dreamhost, where the Ceph project got its start. Inktank as a privately held company enjoyed the financi…

MIT conducts world's largest Bitcoin experiment

Image
digital currency Bitcoin
A pot of $500,000 will be used to hand out free Bitcoins to every undergraduate at MIT later this year, in the hope of spurring research, innovation and entrepreneurialism around digital currencies among students
Two students at the USA's prestigious engineering and technology university MIT have raised $500,000 to conduct an experiment that will see every undergraduate handed $100 of the digital currency Bitcoin later this year.
Jeremy Rubin, who is studying electrical engineering and computer science, and Dan Elitzer, founder and President of the MIT Bitcoin Club and a first-year in the MBA program at MIT Sloan, raised the money so that it could be used in a test of how students use the Bitcoin they receive, as well as to spur academic and entrepreneurial activity around the crypto-currency.
The bulk of funding for the MIT Bitcoin Project is being provided by MIT alumni with additional support from the Bitcoin community. The total of over $500,000 already p…

Public Wi

Image
The Heartbleed Internet bug is still haunting websites worldwide, but it looks like public Wi-Fi is pretty safe.
That doesn't mean you should start banking on an open network -- that's still dangerous. However, you can connect your laptop or smartphone at most coffee shops, hotels and airports without worrying about hackers exploiting the Heartbleed bug on a Wi-Fi router to spy on you.
Most of the Wi-Fi devices used in public spaces are made by Cisco or Ruckus Wireles, and both companies say that hardware wasn't susceptible to the bug in security software.
The same thing goes for all Starbucks locations, as well as major airports like Denver International and Phoenix's Sky Harbor. None of them would specify what kind of equipment they use, citing security concerns. Las Vegas' McCarran International Airport said its wireless gear was vulnerable to the bug, but it updated its systems as soon as a fix was available.
Also safe: small businesses that use the same D-Link, Li…

When BASIC Was Young: Great Memories

Image
As BASIC, the programming language that launched many a technical career, turns 50, we revisit our BASIC projects. Tell us about yours.

(Click image for larger view and slideshow.)
The programming language BASIC will be 50 years old in May. Though much has changed it's still alive and well in the form of Microsoft Visual Basic, presently the sixth most popular programming language, according to the TIOBE index for April 2014.
Although there are many modern programming languages better suited to today's technology -- Python and Lua are personal favorites -- BASIC still matters to many who write code. And it matters as an example of openness.
[For more perspective from Dr. Dobb's editor Andrew Binstock, see BASIC Turns 50: A Love/Hate Story.]
BASIC was developed by John G. Kemeney (1926-1993) and Thomas E. Kurtz (1928-), who described it as an effort 'to give students a simple programming language that was easy-to-learn.'
That goal of accessibility becomes ever more import…

Google halts scanning of Google Apps for Education accounts

Image
The search giant says it will no longer collect student data to use for advertising purposes.
Screenshot by Lance Whitney/CNET
Google says it is no longer mining the accounts of Google Apps for Education users for advertising data.
Revealing the new policy in a blog posted on Tuesday, Bram Bout, director of Google for Education, also said that Google has removed a toggle to enable and disable ads in the Apps for Education Administrator console. Removing the toggle means that ads in the Apps for Education suite are now automatically turned off, and administrators can not turn them back on.
Google Apps for Education provides the usual lineup of apps for email, calendar, and document creation but is geared toward students and teachers.
The new non-scanning policy comes in the wake of a lawsuit against Google filed last year by Gmail users in California, according to The Wall Street Journal. The suit alleged that scanning email for advertising purposes violated California's wiretap laws. …

LG G3 set to be launched globally on May 27

Image
LG has started sending out invites for an event that will take place on May 27 in three cities - London, New York, San Francisco - followed by a May 28 launch in Singapore, Istanbul, and Seoul.
The invite (seen above), which quotes Ralph Waldo Emerson, reads 'To be simple is to be Great.' The capitalised 'G', in the same font as the LG G2 branding, is a direct hint that the company's latest flagship, the LG G3 will be launched at the event.
Notably, while announcing the Q4 earnings, LG in a statement had announced that it will reveal the successor to the LG G2 flagship in the second quarter of this year, alongside a roll-out of the L-Series III smartphones to more regions. The Q2 launch confirmation and the May 27 event date tie together nicely.
Earlier the successor to the LG G2 flagship, the LG G3, had been spotted in various leaks. Recently GSMArena claimed to have obtained a live image of the alleged LG G3, which shows back-mounted buttons for power and volume con…

LG G3 media invites go out for 27 May launch event

Image
LG has begun sending out invites for an event that should officially reveal the G3 flagship smartphone.
The event will take place on 27 May around the world, in six cities to be exact. The launch will happen across London, New York, San Francisco, Singapore, Istanbul, and Seoul.
The LG G3 is rumoured to come with newly designed rear buttons and a sensor that could be to support the camera.
Other leaked specs suggest a 5.5-inch Quad HD display meaning a 2560 x 1440 resolution for 534ppi, OIS+ camera, 3GB of RAM, 16GB and 32GB storage options, a polycarbonate build and microSD slot.
It was only yesterday that LG leaked the G3 would be out before June. The words came in a quarterly report. The exact wording was: 'Higher revenues are expected in the second quarter with the release of the flagship LG G3 smartphone.'
READ: LG G3 release date, rumours and everything you need to know

Every MIT Undergrad Will Get $100 in Bitcoin This Fall

Image
MIT's Bitcoin club is launching a new project that will give each undergrad $100 in Bitcoin, beginning in the Fall semester.
The club has already raised $500,000 in Bitcoin to fund the project and hopes it will help encourage students and local businesses to not only adopt the currency but use it in new and innovative ways.
The two students who have spearheaded the project, Jeremy Rubin and Dan Elitzer, liken it to giving students Internet access 20 years ago.
'It's easy for people who haven't actually looked at the technology and started to understand it - they can grasp he scary things like Mt. Gox disappearing but really understanding the powers to do good is a lot harder,' Dan Elitzer, the club's founder and president told Mashable.
'This is not a completely risk-free endeavor but there's so much potential.'
'This is not a completely risk-free endeavor but there's so much potential, it enables them to experience a new technology for themselve…

Atari graveyard found: Millions of ET cartridges, legendary 'worst video game ever'

Image
Posted: 04/26/2014 02:25:58 PM PDT
Updated: 04/29/2014 08:13:27 AM PDT
ALAMOGORDO, N.M. (AP) -- A documentary film production company has found buried in a New Mexico landfill hundreds of the Atari 'E.T.' game cartridges that some call the worst video game ever made.
Film director Zak Penn showed one 'E.T.' cartridge retrieved from the site and said that hundreds more were found in the mounds of trash and dirt scooped by a backhoe.
About 200 residents and game enthusiasts gathered early Saturday in southeastern New Mexico to watch backhoes and bulldozers dig through the concrete-covered landfill in search of up to a million discarded copies of 'E.T. The Extraterrestrial' that the game's maker wanted to hide forever.

'I feel pretty relieved and psyched that they actually got to see something,' said Penn as members of the production team sifted through the mounds of trash, pulling out boxes, games and other Atari products.
Most of the crowd left the landfil…

Atari graveyard found: Millions of ET cartridges, legendary 'worst video game ever'

Image
Posted: 04/26/2014 02:25:58 PM PDT
Updated: 04/29/2014 08:13:27 AM PDT
ALAMOGORDO, N.M. (AP) -- A documentary film production company has found buried in a New Mexico landfill hundreds of the Atari 'E.T.' game cartridges that some call the worst video game ever made.
Film director Zak Penn showed one 'E.T.' cartridge retrieved from the site and said that hundreds more were found in the mounds of trash and dirt scooped by a backhoe.
About 200 residents and game enthusiasts gathered early Saturday in southeastern New Mexico to watch backhoes and bulldozers dig through the concrete-covered landfill in search of up to a million discarded copies of 'E.T. The Extraterrestrial' that the game's maker wanted to hide forever.

'I feel pretty relieved and psyched that they actually got to see something,' said Penn as members of the production team sifted through the mounds of trash, pulling out boxes, games and other Atari products.
Most of the crowd left the landfil…

Lunecase harvests excess iPhone energy to light up LED notifications

Image
iPhone cases are a dime a dozen, but the creators of Lunecase claim their masterpiece can do something special. While it looks just like any other case on the surface, Lunecase can apparently harness the electromagnetic energy the iPhone emits and use it to light up its LED call or message indicators. It's not even connected to the phone via wires or any other means -- if what its Kickstarter page says is true, it'll work as soon as you snap it on. Sound familiar? That's because Lunecase's creators, Ukrainian company Concepter, showed it off at CES 2014, albeit in a different form. The prototype presented during the event looked a lot different from the current offering, but at least it worked just as advertised. If this sounds more useful than a case that can track your blood pressure, you can get one for the iPhone 5, 5s and 5c from its Kickstarter page for a minimum pledge of $35. Just note that you'll have to make do without its icon-like indicators until it sh…

Office for iPad update brings welcome new feature

Image
There are certain applications that are provided by companies that will be used on rival platforms, and that can certainly be said about Microsoft Office, and the iPad app has received a recent update that brings a welcome new feature.
Back in March Microsoft launched the Office app for iPad users that allowed them to view already created documents for free, but would need an Office 365 subscription to create and edit new Word documents.
Now the company has provided an update bringing the app up to version 1.0.1 that brings users the ability to print documents to an AirPrint compatible printer. Users can also print content with or without markup, and there has also been some minor bug fixes provided.
This new printing feature will work with Excel and PowerPoint besides Word, and for more information and to download head over to the App Store.
Are you pleased with this update?

Xbox One to be available in China in September

Image
Besides China, the Xbox One will also launch in 42 other countries in the same month.
Microsoft
Following the lift on a 13-year ban on consoles last September, Microsoft will soon be launching its Xbox One in China through its joint venture E-Home Entertainment.
E-Home Entertainment comprises of Microsoft and BesTV, and takes advantage of the slightly more relaxed rules of the Shanghai Free Trade Zone.
The current rules allow for the sale of consoles only in the zone, and we've contacted Microsoft to find out if the Xbox One will be restricted to the same guidelines.
Also announced was a new developer program to develop and sell games 'fused with Chinese culture' for local as well as international distribution.
Microsoft reckons China will be a big market -- the company says there are half a billion gamers in China and the gaming industry has generated $13 billion in revenue as of 2013. However, this is from PC, mobile and online gaming.
Besides China, Microsoft's Xbox One w…

Microsoft's prototype keyboard understands gestures

Image
Microsoft's research division has developed a keyboard that can interpret basic hand gestures, potentially bridging a gap between touch devices and more traditional input methods.

Microsoft Research has developed a prototype keyboard that understands basic gestures. It appears to bridge the gap between an all touch interface and a traditional keyboard.
Presented at the Computer Human Interaction (CHI) conference in Toronto, the prototype keyboard has 64 sensors that detect the movement of hands as they brush over the top of the keyboard. Swiping a hand over the left or right side, for instance, can bring up left and right side menus in Windows 8.
The main goal is for users to be able to keep their hands on or very close to the keyboard while typing and using input gestures, said Stuart Taylor, a Microsoft senior research engineer.
Some of the gestures can replace existing keyboard shortcuts, like the Alt and Tab combination for switching between applications.

This is what Microsoft Res…

Harman/Kardon HTC One M8 Official May 2nd, Coupled With Spotify Premium ...

Image
Earlier on in the month we reported that Sprint was potentially going to be offering up some sort of deal with Spotify to offer either discounted rates to the service for subscribers or some other way to entice users into using the streaming radio alternative to Google Play Music All Access and others. We also let you in on some information prior to that, indicating that Sprint would soon be offering a Harman/Kardon edition of the HTC One M8 device that would presumably have the Harman/Kardon audio tech inside and we would guess the branding on the back. Since HTC and Beats are no more, that left the window open for another audio company to become a potential partner with HTC on this years flagship should they have wanted to go that route again. We now know that the Harman/Kardon edition HTC M8 is coming to Sprint exclusively, but not alone. As part of the launch and the promotion, Srint customers will also be able to get a deal on Spotify. It seems like the Spotify deal may have alwa…

Revenue Up at Twitter, but Growth Is a Worry

Image
SAN FRANCISCO - Twitter is struggling to convince Wall Street that it is still a company with plenty of potential to grow.
In its second earnings announcement as a public company, Twitter said on Tuesday that it had more than doubled revenues, beating its own forecasts and the expectations of investment analysts. But the social network's stock fell more than 11 percent in after-hours trading because the number of people who joined it did not increase as fast as many had hoped.
Wall Street, it appears, is more worried about Twitter's ability to add users and keep them engaged than about its ability to increase revenues.
In the last two quarters, that has been a problem. Twitter said it had 255 million monthly users globally in March, up 5 percent from 241 million at the end of December, which ended a quarter in which monthly active users rose less than 4 percent.
'They need to prove that they can be a very large-sized platform,' said Arvind Bhatia, an analyst with Sterne Ag…

Microsoft Office for iPad finally adds printing feature

Image
Microsoft said Tuesday that its had added the ability to print to its Office for iPad suite, covering up an ugly bruise on an otherwise well-regarded office suite.
Microsoft announced the update in a blog post, noting, unsurprisingly, that printing had been the most popular feature request by users. Microsoft's Office for iPad suite is published as three separate apps-Word, PowerPoint, and Excel-and users will have to update each app separately via the Apple App Store.
Microsoft also said the new update includes SmartGuides for PowerPoint and AutoFit for Excel, two features that will improve the appearance of content in both apps, respectively.
Microsoft
Before Tuesday's release, this was what users saw if they wondered why they couldn't print on the Office for iPad suite.
Although Microsoft's Office suite for the Apple tablet received positive if not rave reviews, one of its omissions was the ability to print. Microsoft's Office team then took to Reddit to promise it w…

Microsoft Should Make Windows XP Open

Image
As Microsoft rushes to fix a major security defect in its popular Web browser, Internet Explorer, one enormous group of computer users will remain vulnerable to the bug: the 488 million people worldwide who still rely on Windows XP to power their computers.

Samsung to jury: You can't copy iPhone features that aren't in the iPhone

Image
James Martin/CNET
SAN JOSE, Calif. -- Samsung didn't copy Apple's patents because Google created the technology first and Apple doesn't even use the specific accused features its the iPhone, attorneys for the Korean electronics maker told a jury here.
'It's true that if you don't practice a patent, that doesn't mean you can't collect damages for it,' Samsung attorney Bill Price argued Tuesday during Samsung's closing arguments in its patent-infringement trial versus Apple. 'But you can't copy something from the iPhone if it's not in the iPhone.'
He added that Apple's patents are narrow and cover specific ways of performing tasks, not the entire tasks -- such as universal search or word suggestion -- themselves. And while Apple tried to downplay the role of Google in the trial, Google is relevant, Price said.
He noted that four attorneys will present Samsung's closing arguments.
Closing arguments are the final chance for Apple …

Europe's Antitrust Chief Censures Google's Motorola Mobility, but Stops Short of ...

Image
BRUSSELS - Motorola Mobility broke European Union law by competing unfairly in technology markets, Europe's antitrust chief said on Tuesday. But he did not fine the company, which is owned by Google.
The decision by JoaquĆ­n Almunia, the European Union competition commissioner, was the latest turn in the so-called patent wars involving technology titans like Apple, Google, Microsoft and Samsung.
The move requires Motorola to strike out clauses in an existing agreement with Apple that prohibits Apple from challenging the validity of patents held by Motorola. Those patents are used by Apple and other technology companies to make compatible products and help devices like iPhones and iPads communicate.
The battle is driven by ferocious competition on the market for consumer mobile technologies, like smartphones and tablets, which share many so-called essential technologies.
The case against Motorola was focused on the way the company sought and then enforced a court injunction against Appl…

Office for iPad now lets you print documents

Image
Microsoft vowed that Office for iPad users wouldn't always have to track down a PC just to print their files, and it's making good on that promise with a slew of app updates. The tablet-sized versions of Excel, PowerPoint and Word now let you make hard copies of documents so long as you have an AirPrint-friendly printer on hand. The move tackles one of the biggest gripes we had with Office when it launched last month; it's at last possible to skip the computer entirely when producing that class report or family budget.
Printing isn't the only upgrade in store. Excel now has auto-resizing for columns and rows, while PowerPoint gets Keynote-style guides that help align all the graphics just so for your big presentation. All told, these refinements are huge if the iPad is your productivity center -- head over to the App Store source link to start updating.

Sprint and HTC announce exclusive Harman Kardon Edition HTC One (M8)

Image
Summary: The HTC One (M8) is an audio powerhouse and this new Sprint exclusive version provides some software enhancements along with $140 H/K earbuds in each package.
(Image: CNET)
The new HTC One (M8), see my review, is a fantastic new Android phone with outstanding audio functionality. Today, Sprint and HTC announced an exclusive Harman-Kardon HTC One (M8) with a focus on music.
HTC sold back their Beats Audio shares late last year and removed the Beats integration from this year's version of the One. The integrated amplified headphone jack and front facing stereo speakers both sound better this year even without the Beats integration.
According to CNET's Roger Cheng's live blog transcript of the event, Sprint and HTC will include Harman-Kardon earbuds in each package. These earbuds have a value of $140 so that seems like a pretty good deal for earbuds right out of the box.
This Sprint exclusive HTC One will still has the FM radio, but includes more exclusive content. If you…

Firefox Rolls Out Biggest Design Overhaul in 3 Years

Image
Mozilla got personal with the biggest update to its Firefox browser since 2011 to users on Tuesday, ushering in a much-welcomed modernized look with a collection of new customization features.
The company is introducing these tools as a part of a greater effort to compete with other browsers, and the launch comes at a time when Mozilla needs it most. The company is still rebounding from the controversy surrounding its cofounder Brendan Eich, who recently stepped down as CEO following a public outcry over his support toward the ban on gay marriage.
The modern design update, which is available now, is noticeable right from the start, but also incorporates changes baked into the browser itself. The focus of the design is customization and the ability to access your preferences from a browser quickly - such as tabs and bookmarks - and to edit and delete features you don't want, too.

The design borrows a few elements from the Google Chrome browser, not only in a clean aesthetic but also w…

Amazon's Wearable Technology store opens online

Image
Summary: The online retail giant dedicated a new online storefront entirely to wearable technology equipped with a 'Learning Center' for device newcomers.

Amazon announced Tuesday the launch of its Wearable Technology store, an online storefront designed to ba hub for the buzzword-worthy world of wearable devices.
Customers can shop selection of items from recognizable brands including Samsung, Jawbone and GoPro, as well as from emerging brands like Basis, Misfit, Narrative and Bionym.
The store features a 'Learning Center' full of product videos and detailed buying guides, which Amazon hopes will woo on-the-fence shoppers into making a purchase. There's also an 'Editor's Corner' said to contain wearable technology industry news, device reviews and more.
John Nemeth, director of Wireless and Mobile Electronics at Amazon, said in the announcement:
Wearable technology is an exciting category with rapid innovation and our customers are increasingly coming to Am…

Massive Firefox update hits refresh on browsing

Image
Mozilla released the first major interface refresh for Firefox on Tuesday since relaunching the browser in 2011, with new menus and new features in a bid to keep the browser competitive.
The massive overhaul comes at a challenging time for the company's leaders. Mozilla has been beset with internal strife as company co-founder and longtime CTO Brendan Eich was elevated to chief executive and then resigned 11 days later, following a public outcry over his financial support for an anti-gay marriage law in California.
Among the more than 1,300 changes, the sweeping improvements in Firefox 29 for desktops introduce a new Firefox Account to simplify its cross-browser Sync feature, a customizable graphical menu, and rounded tabs that emphasize the tab you're in over the others.
'People are using the Web differently than they used to,' said Johnathan Nightingale, Mozilla's vice president of Firefox, 'And we need to give them a richer set of tools for customizing the way …

AMD launches Beema, boasts huge efficiency improvements

Image
Puma+ CPU cores, 128 GCN shaders
AMD's new low-power Beema APUs are official and just as we expected the new parts are significantly more efficient than Kabini products. It's not all about efficiency, the new chips also have some fresh features, but the basic concept is the same - up to four low-power CPU cores, 128 GCN cores.
The company claims a 2X advantage in compute performance-per-watt compared to competing processors. The new chips offer a 50% improvement in clock speeds at nearly half of the TDP of the previous generation (Kabini). GPU performance-per-watt has been practically doubled compared to Temash parts.
AMD's biggest selling point is efficiency, so let's start there, right after we take a look at the branding of the new parts.
AMD's new branding for Beema and Mullins
AMD has three new low-power Mullins parts and it also has new branding for the tweaked cores. Mullins parts can be distinguished from Beema products quite easily, as they sport a Micro prefix…

Microsoft raises cloud pitch, targets Dropbox, Box

Image
Microsoft Corp said it will increase its cloud storage offering for business users by 40-fold as the world's largest software company makes a case for businesses buying an all-in-one product from itself rather than buying technology 'piecemeal' from multiple sellers.
'The era of making isolated, single-solution decisions is rapidly coming to a close,' wrote John Case, corporate vice president of Microsoft Office Division. Microsoft on Monday raised its OneDrive for Business storage to 1TB per user from 25GB.
Microsoft's pitch to be the one-stop destination for companies looking to buy technology runs against efforts by smaller rivals such as Box and Dropbox that offer one or two specialized services.
Microsoft did not name its rivals but made a reference to them in the headline of its blog post titled 'Thinking outside the box.'
Dropbox spokeswoman declined to comment on the Microsoft move. Box Chief Executive Aaron Levie fired back in a blog post, criticiz…

Netflix Inks Streaming Traffic Deal With Verizon

Image
Netflix announced Monday that it has signed a deal with Verizon to provide improved connectivity with customers served by the ISP. A similar deal was cut with Comcast in February. (Comcast is the parent company of NBC.)
Few details were provided in the short statement issued to NBC News via email:
'We have reached an interconnect arrangement with Verizon that we hope will improve performance for our joint customers over the coming months.'

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings has publicly stated support for strong 'Net neutrality' rules, which would make most such arrangements unnecessary.
'While in the short term Netflix will in cases reluctantly pay large ISPs to ensure a high quality member experience, we will continue to fight for the Internet the world needs and deserves,' Hastings wrote in a blog post last month.
Netflix declined to provide any further details on the particulars of the deal.
First published April 28 2014, 4:22 PM
Devin Coldewey
Devin Coldewey is a contribut…