Technology archive for 2011-05-07
It has always been assumed that traditional vendors would resist the move to SaaS because the SaaS business model doesn't work with the maintenance driven model. That may not be true.
Umika Pidaparthy / CNN:What you should know about iTunes' 56-page legal terms — Updates to Apple's iTunes mean users must agree to new legal terms over and over. But does anyone actually read them? — (CNN) — During Saturday's White House correspondents dinner, “Saturday Night Live's” Seth Meyers jokingly scolded members …
We can't say we've ever been particularly impressed by the video quality delivered by the Tachyon line of helmet cameras, but they're a good choice for those who need a recorder that can take one heck of a beating -- if you don't mind some extra bulk. That fat has been banished in the new, slimmer OPS line which will be available in two flavors: a $90 VGA base unit and a slightly higher-end HD (720p) one for $140. If you're keeping track that's the same as the earlier XC and XC HD models, but these aren't waterproof like those. The SD model is less than an inch wide and 2.252-inches long, while the HD model looks to be roughly $.25 longer. Each camera is square in profile, meaning it can be rotated in four orientations on its mount, or flipped around backward. And yes, just like the XC cameras, Tahyon will be releasing a range of mounts for all your extreme endeavors, including shotguns, picatinny rails, and one that looks like an overgrown tie clip. It should be perfect for when things get fancy down at the range.Gallery: Tachyon OPS and OPS HDContinue reading Tachyon launches OPS and OPS HD helmet cameras, not as durable but way more tinyTachyon launches OPS and OPS HD helmet cameras, not as durable but way more tiny originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 07 May 2011 17:06:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | Tachyon | Email this | Comments
fysdt sends this quote from a Reuters report:"An unmanned Atlas 5 rocket blasted off from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on Saturday to put the first satellite of the Defense Department's new missile-warning system into orbit. Tucked inside the rocket's nosecone was the $1.3 billion Space-Based Infrared Systems (SBIRS) Geo-1 spacecraft, built by Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman. The satellite, the first of four scheduled for launch over the next five years, is intended to provide the US military with early notice of missile launches and other reconnaissance services. The $17.6 billion SBIRS constellation, which includes sensors on host satellites, will augment and eventually replace the military's Defense Support Program satellites, which have been operating since 1970. The satellites scour the planet for heat trails produced by flying rockets and missiles." Read more of this story at Slashdot.
If a country can show that it has reduced its level of deforestation (and the related carbon pollution), then it will receive payments. Great idea, but only if you can accurately draw up a balance sheet of carbon-in, carbon-out. An unlikely solution: lasers being shot from planes at 200,000 photons per second.
You aren't looking at a retro microSD card reader, you're looking at an Atari-compatible serial disk drive that just happens to use microSD in lieu of 5.25-inch floppies. In a Zork inspired fit of nostalgia (we've all been there), hardware modder Rossum paired up an Atari connector with a LPC1114 microcontroller, capable of emulating up to eight Atari drives, managed by a custom, auto-booting app. The whole package is neatly packed in to a tiny 3D printed replica of the original Atari 810 disk drive, and is available for sale never -- but don't let that stop you: Rossum's schematics are free for the taking. The word's biggest little Atari drive is just a DIY away. [Thanks, Francesco F.]Modder miniaturizes 5.25-inch disk drive, brings microSD support to Atari 400 originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 07 May 2011 16:01:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | Rossum | Email this | Comments
greenerd writes "Engineering students at Rice University have solved a huge health concern in developing countries by creating a device that uses the sun to sterilize medical instruments. This invention could help prevent the spread of infection and illness in clinics around the world without access to proper sterilization tools." Read more of this story at Slashdot.
Rene Ritchie / TiPb:Fortune goes Inside Apple — Fortune's Adam Lashinsky goes Inside Apple to detail how the world's most secretive and successful [computer] consumer electronics company is run, from Steve Jobs... down to the janitor. And it's a doozy of an article. Over the course of some 22 pages, we learn:
Jay Yarow / SAI: Silicon Alley Insider:What It's Like When Steve Jobs Chews You Out For A Product Failure — In 2008, when Apple launched MobileMe, its own advanced email system, it was dud. — It cost $100 annually, but there were syncing issues, and emails were being lost. The Wall Street Journal's legendary tech guru …
This week was a big one in the smartphone and tablet spaces, with big news about all of the major platforms. Here's a breakdown by platform of the major news of the past week.
We liked the Kyocera Echo quite a bit, but perhaps the dual-screen tabletphone concept is a mite ahead of its time -- here it is fifteen years from now, helping the Fringe team pull up security blueprints for an opera house. Or perhaps Astrid has become a vintage technology connoisseur? We have to admit it's a step up from the Streak seismograph, but we can't help but frown -- we wouldn't be caught dead running Froyo in the year 2026, after all.[Thanks, Prince C.]Continue reading Screen Grabs: Kyocera Echo goes back to the alternate-reality future in FringeScreen Grabs: Kyocera Echo goes back to the alternate-reality future in Fringe originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 07 May 2011 15:02:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | | Email this | Comments
RedEaredSlider writes "NASA's Cassini probe, in orbit around Saturn, may have discovered evidence for a liquid water ocean under the surface of Titan, Saturn's largest moon. The data comes from radar observations of the surface that measure Titan's rotation and tell how it is oriented relative to the plane of its orbit — its axial tilt. According to a paper to be published in an upcoming issue of Astronomy and Astrophysics (preprint PDF at arXiv.org), the new data showed that many of the planet's surface features were in the wrong place, sometimes off by as much as 30 kilometers (19 miles). Titan always presents the same face toward Saturn, just like the Moon does to Earth. But in those situations, one expects that the moon will be in the 'Cassini state,' which means that the axial tilt will have a certain value. In Titan's case, the axial tilt was measured at 0.3 degrees. That seemed too high if one assumed Titan was a solid body." Read more of this story at Slashdot.
Just when we're finally basking in the warmth of spring and picking May flowers, US Cellular finds a reason for us to look forward to the cold and dark winter to come. The carrier announced plans to deploy its own LTE network, intent on blanketing two dozen markets (representing 25 percent of its customer base) with blazing-fast 4G service in time for the holiday season. And the party ain't stopping just because the mistletoe comes down and the decorations are put away; the holiday deployment will only be the first phase, with US Cellular continuing its 4G expansion efforts through 2012. Full PR after the break.Continue reading US Cellular announces 4G, plans to light up LTE by end of yearUS Cellular announces 4G, plans to light up LTE by end of year originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 07 May 2011 13:55:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | US Cellular | Email this | Comments
Check out this video from Zdenek Kalal in Surrey, UK. He's built an extremely smart camera that can track and recognize faces, among other things. Imagine the ideas that could come to fruition...
theodp writes "Google and Facebook are warning legislators of dire consequences if California passes a 'do-not-track' bill. The proposed law would require companies doing online business in the Golden State to offer an 'opt-out' privacy mechanism for consumers. Senate Bill 761 'would create an unnecessary, unenforceable and unconstitutional regulatory burden on Internet commerce,' reads the sky-is-falling protest letter bearing the stamp-of-disapproval from Google, Facebook, Yahoo, Amex, Acxiom, Experian, Allstate, Time-Warner, MPAA, ESA and others. 'The measure would negatively affect consumers who have come to expect rich content and free services through the Internet, and would make them more vulnerable to security threats.'" Read more of this story at Slashdot.
The kind folks at Seed Hatchery invited me to MobileCampMemphis this weekend, and I want to show you some pictures of EmergeMemphis, an incubator in downtown Memphis for tech startups. A couple...
30 Days With...Google Docs: Day 6
Security researchers revealed a dangerous exploit in Skype for Mac which can be exploited to create a worm that can take control of Mac PCs.This FAQ will help you understand the potential impact of the threat, and what you can do to protect your system.
More bad news for RIM's Blackberry: A recent survey of cell phone users shows Google's Android is continuing to gobble up its market share.
GetJar, Opera, Amazon and now Barnes & Noble-seems like these days everyone has their own Android app store with their own apps that can't be found anywhere else. While the joke these past few months has been that Steve Jobs doesn't "get "all these Android app stores, the real joke may be on the consumer.
Many have tried and failed to bring a 3D desktop interface to an otherwise 2D operating system, but that certainly hasn't stopped others from trying. The latest example to crop up comes courtesy of none other than Microsoft, which recently received a patent for what it describes as a "method and apparatus for providing a three-dimensional task gallery computer interface." In other words, it's an interface intended to help you better manage multiple tasks, which the patent suggests could be done in a 3D environment with a floor, walls and a ceiling. Apparently, you'd be able to group multiple windows at various spots in the "room," which would let you rely on your spatial memory to easily find a given task -- with the room getting deeper and deeper to accommodate more tasks. In the patent's claims, the only means described for navigating around that room is a set of icons that would adjust to suit the 3D environment, although it certainly seems like it could easily be adapted to accommodate gesture controls as well. Hit up the source link below for plenty more line drawings where this one came from.Microsoft patent details a 3D desktop interface with a room for your windows originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 07 May 2011 12:51:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink Technology Review | Google Patents | Email this | Comments
Sony is reneging on a promise to reboot its PlayStation Network and start bringing its 77 million customers back online anytime soon. Sony posted an update to its PlayStation blog Friday stating it was "unaware of the extent of the (network) attack" adding it needs to "conduct further testing of the incredibly complex system" before it can restart its network.
sdasher writes "Finally, there's a chance to combine your love of version control and parties: Gitionary. The brainchild of two MIT alums, it's a party game where you try to illustrate git commands. A set of gitionary cards (PDF) has been posted as well. Personally, I'm still holding out for the Debugging Python RPG." Read more of this story at Slashdot.
Are you a mild-mannered California beverage executive tired of having your family vacations degenerate into antics? Do you feel like every time you try to clean the sewage system of your Recreational Vehicle, some (admittedly hilarious) fecal-matter-related mishap occurs? Well, we can't help you with that, honestly, but we can point you toward Rand McNally's TripMaker RVND 5510 -- "the first navigation device designed specifically for RVers." This isn't for supervans or campers: it's for RVs, son, whether they be an Airstream, a Monaco, a sweet South Korean custom job or a hippified veggie-RV. The 5510 features RV-easy GPS routing, keeping you safe and legal on the road. It also has over 14 million points of interest, helping you find everything from campsites to the nearest animal hospital. And its Best of the Road feature threatens to turn your trip into a memorable adventure. The TripMaker RVND 5510 retails for $350 and ships to North America in June (just in time for road trip season) and yes, includes support for Canadian French.Continue reading Rand McNally's TripMaker RVND 5510 promises RV-easy navigation, Robin Williams at extra chargeRand McNally's TripMaker RVND 5510 promises RV-easy navigation, Robin Williams at extra charge originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 07 May 2011 11:47:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | Rand McNally | Email this | Comments
Hugh Pickens writes "H. Gilbert Welch writes in the LA Times that the threshold for diagnosis has fallen too low, with physicians making diagnoses in individuals who wouldn't have been considered sick in the past, raising healthcare costs for everyone. Part of the explanation is technological: diagnostic tests able to detect biochemical and anatomic abnormalities that were undetectable in the past. 'But part of the explanation is behavioral: We look harder for things to be wrong. We test more often, we are more likely to test people who have no symptoms, and we have changed the rules about what degree of abnormality constitutes disease (a fasting blood sugar of 130 was not considered to be diabetes before 1997; now it is).' Welch says the problem is that low thresholds have a way of leading to treatments that are worse than the disease. 'We are trained to focus on the few we might be able to help, even if it's only 1 out of 100 (the benefit of lowering cholesterol in those with normal cholesterol but elevated C-reactive protein) or 1 out of 1,000 (the benefit of breast and prostate cancer screening),' writes Welch. 'But it's time for everyone to start caring about what happens to the other 999.'" Read more of this story at Slashdot.
It's pretty fitting that BeBook chose the word "Live" for its new product, because until we got a note from a member of its staff earlier today, we weren't entirely sure it was still kicking. The company has followed up its solid, if pricey, black and white e-reader with, get this, an Android tablet. The BeBook Live tablet has a seven-inch multitouch color screen, a 2MP front facing camera, 1080p HDMI out, Flash support, and 4GB of built-in memory. Weirdly, the device's "tablet OS" is actually Android 2.2, which will no doubt feel downright antiquated when it launches in June for $279 -- which, to the company's credit, is significantly cheaper than its lower tech predecessor. Video after the break that may or may not be narrated by the Moviefone guy.Continue reading BeBook Live tablet delivers the goods for Froyo diehardsBeBook Live tablet delivers the goods for Froyo diehards originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 07 May 2011 10:42:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | BeBook | Email this | Comments
With the Core i7-990X Extreme Edition six-core processor, Intel has reached the end of the road with its Gulftown platform. Before Ivy Bridge rumbles into the picture next year, the chip giant...
dvdkhlng writes "The Ben NanoNote open-source hand-held computer has often been criticized for not being very extensible hardware-wise. A community effort now starts to challenge this by shipping the so-called UBB board, which plugs into the micro-SD port, making 6 I/O lines available to hardware hackers. The most impressive use so far is this VGA port implemented by just a few resistors, with signal-generation mostly controlled by software. The guy who did this calls it an 'unexpected capability.' Schematics and source code are available under the GPL." Read more of this story at Slashdot.
If that offbeat Acer Aspire One 722 we told you about last month caught your fancy, well, we still don't know when you'll be able to buy it or how many pretty pennies it'll cost. In the meantime, the folks at NewGadgets, at least, got to spend some time with one and gave it the full hands-on treatment, including a video (embedded below for your viewing pleasure) and gallery of close-up shots. So if you like your netbooks blue, dented, and loaded with AMD innards, head on past the break to get your eyeful. Now if only this had a release date to go with it...[Thanks, Johannes]Continue reading Acer Aspire One 722 caught in the wild (video)Acer Aspire One 722 caught in the wild (video) originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 07 May 2011 09:37:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | NewGadgets | Email this | Comments
A pattern intended to help insulate service infrastructure details from service consumers.
Jason Perlow of Tech Broiler told his wife to throw his new iPad 2, nestled in the new G-Form Extreme sleeve, onto his patio. Kids, don't try this at home.
GoldenEye 007 is certainly a fun way to waste your childhood...but is it art? According to the Smithsonian American Art Museum, yes. The game was one of 80 selected for an upcoming exhibit, The Art of Video Games, and the the venerable museum drew on fan expertise, using online voting to winnow the field of 240 nominees. The selections span the last four decades (!) of gaming, from the days of the Atari VCS and ColecoVision all the way to today's modern time-sinks like Portal and The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess. The exhibit won't open until next spring, but in the meantime check out the source link to argue about who got left out. Smithsonian announces titles for Art of Video Games exhibit, snubs Mario Paint originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 07 May 2011 08:34:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink Kotaku | Smithsonian American Art Museum | Email this | Comments
Trailrunner7 writes "The OpenID Foundation is warning users about a weakness in the software that could enable an attacker to change some of the data exchanged between parties that use OpenID. The group is telling sites that implement OpenID to update to a new version in order to fix the problem. The bug in OpenID lies in the system's Attribute Exchange, an extension that gives sites the ability to exchange identity information between endpoints. OpenID, an open source project that enables users to prove their identity to myriad sites without providing their passwords, is used by a slew of popular sites, including Google, Yahoo and Flickr." Read more of this story at Slashdot.
Scrubbing the Web of personal information is a tough, maybe impossible, task.
Computer hackers may target Sony again this weekend, report says.
Intelligence officials see more chatter on possible bin Laden revenge attacks.
The leaks should've already told you most of everything you need to know about the Lenovo ThinkPad X1, but here's some affirmation of perhaps the most relevant bit of info, the release date. Amazon has listed the ultraslim 13.3-inch laptop for pre-order, giving it the extremely specific price of £1,292.52 ($2,120) and a shipping date of May 20th. That's a heftier price tag than you'll find on Apple's 13-inch MacBook Air, however Lenovo will provide you with the latest generation of Intel processor -- in the shape of the 2.5GHz Core i5-2520M -- 4GB of RAM, 320GB of HDD storage, a backlit keyboard, and a promised eight hours of battery life. You don't need us to tell you that there hasn't yet been a laptop that's combined the thinness, processing power and battery endurance on offer from the X1. We'll be keen to check these mighty specs out for ourselves when it launches, but if you're already convinced, hit up the source link to get your pre-order in.[Thanks, Raj]Continue reading Lenovo ThinkPad X1 priced at £1,292.52 by Amazon, shipping May 20thLenovo ThinkPad X1 priced at £1,292.52 by Amazon, shipping May 20th originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 07 May 2011 06:57:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | Amazon | Email this | Comments
Here's hoping there's more than a few military-style marches standing between us and a complete robotic takeover. If not, we've got some dire news: these are not simply miniature Roombas as they may appear, but 15 so-called Khepera bots capable of spelling out GRITS (for Georgia Robotics and Intelligent Systems) to demonstrate grad student Edward Macdonald's Master's thesis for the department. The diminutive robots aren't told where to go in the letters -- instead, they determine their spots via a control algorithm, positioning themselves relative to their fellow rolling machines, so that if one is removed from the equation, they quickly reform the letter without it. Fortunately, they haven't learned to spell "KILL." Yet. Get to know your new robotic overlords a little bit better in the video after the break.[Thanks, Ted]Continue reading Robots learn to march / spell, still not capable of love (video)Robots learn to march / spell, still not capable of love (video) originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 07 May 2011 05:02:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | | Email this | Comments
MG Siegler / TechCrunch:Apple May Not Have Bought Nuance But... This past November, the blogosphere was briefly set on fire when a comment Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak made in passing stated that Apple had acquired the voice recognition company Nuance. Wozniak quickly came out and corrected that comment …
An anonymous reader writes "HD Moore is at it again, this time the famous open source security researcher has set his sites on exploiting Apple iOS. The Metaploit 3.7 release includes 35 new attack modules in total." Read more of this story at Slashdot.
Whoops. If you'll recall, Sony held what can only be described as an emergency press event in Japan a week ago in order to issue a number of assurances about the resumption of service as it relates to the PlayStation Network and Qriocity. Seven days later, things are still as dead as they were pre-Cinco de Mayo. This evening, the company's Senior Director of Corporate Communications Patrick Seybold punched out a quick update to let the world know that they could actually leave the house and find something else to entertain 'em -- like it or not, PSN isn't coming back online today. The reason? On May 1st, Sony was apparently "unaware of the extent of the attack on Sony Online Entertainment servers," and now, it's spinning its wheels in order to restore security on the network and "ensure" that user data is safe. Mr. Seybold seems to understand that you're overly anxious about getting back into the swing of things, and he's even going so far as to ask your trust that Sony's doing "everything [it] can" to get the lights blinking once more. Oh, and if you were planning on visiting that source link just to find the new ETA... don't. Sony's planning to update you "as soon as it can."Sony misses promised PlayStation Network and Qriocity restoration date, begs for more patience originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 07 May 2011 03:18:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | PlayStation Blog | Email this | Comments
You can toss it on a plane. You can toss it on a train. You can toss it in a car. You can toss it near and far.Kiloo's new Frisbee(R) app for iOS gives geeks a safe environment to toss the disc (so no more broken windows or dents in the lawn). We managed to keep that little blue saucer parallel to the ground for several seconds during our hands-on. It even flew through one or two of those enormous black and white hoops (enormous relative to the finger-nail-size frisbee). Many of the interface elements feel like they were borrowed from Angry Birds, from buttons and other graphics, to the way you progress through levels. This brought a certain familiarity to the game, though gently sliding a Frisbee(R) across the screen is arguably much less addictive than catapulting feathered fowl to their explosive deaths. We tossed (or flicked) the disc on an iPhone, but if you're ready to step up to the big leagues, the free app is available for iPad (and iPod touch) as well. Jump up and catch it at the source link.Frisbee Forever app hits your iPhone screen, doesn't crack it originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 07 May 2011 02:07:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | Apple App Store | Email this | Comments
PSN reactivation delayed for 'further testing,' likely not coming back this week (JC Fletcher/Joystiq)(5 years ago)
JC Fletcher / Joystiq:PSN reactivation delayed for ‘further testing,’ likely not coming back this week — On Sunday, Sony announced that “some” PSN services, including online play, would come back this week. With very little of this week remaining, you might be wondering if it's still going to happen. Well, it isn't.
Bad news for anyone camped out in Florida waiting to get a glimpse of the long-expected, oft-delayed launch of the shuttle Endeavour: NASA has pushed the date of the launch back, to no earlier than May 16. Read more of this story at Slashdot.
TOKYO (Reuters) - Sony said on Saturday it had removed off the Internet the personal details of 2,500 people that had been stolen by hackers and posted on a website.
Sam Gustin / Epicenter:Report: Condé Nast Springs Ahead of Hearst With iPad Subscription Pact — Welcome to the future — it only costs $19.99. — Condé Nast, the publisher of Vogue, The New Yorker, Vanity Fair, GQ and Wired, is on the verge of announcing a pact with Apple to begin selling digital subscriptions …
A 4.5 billion-year-old meteorite from northwest Africa has yielded one of the earliest minerals of the solar system.
Assuming you own a Sensefly Swinglet CAM or some other high-res camera-equipped UAV, you could be just minutes away from turning your plain old 2D aerial photos into comprehensive 3D maps. Pix4D, a new software program coming out of EPFL -- the same institute that brought us this race of altruistic robots -- takes images shot using an aerial drone to render 3D maps in the cloud in just 30 minutes. Users upload images taken with their flying machines, at which point Pix4D kicks into action, defining high contrast points in the phots and pasting them together based on those points. It then renders a 3D model, overlays the graphics, and spits out a Google Earth-style map. So what's with this 4D business? Well, its developers claim that users can easily see the progression of any model by deploying their Sensefly drone whenever they see fit, throwing the added layer of time into the mix. You can see the fruits of Pix4D's labor in the video after the break.Continue reading Pix4D turns your 2D aerial photographs into 3D maps on the fly (video)Pix4D turns your 2D aerial photographs into 3D maps on the fly (video) originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 07 May 2011 00:02:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | Pix4D | Email this | Comments
'The industry estimates are wrong. They're low. You can write that down.'