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Archos preparing a Microsoft Windows 8.1 tablet for $149

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: 1 day, 16 hours ago

Electronics maker Archos has unveiled the Archos 80 Cesium tablet, a device running Microsoft Windows 8.1 and uses an Intel quad-core CPU with a 1200 x 800 resolution. The 8" tablet's hardware specifications haven't been released, but for $149, the price point might attract consumers.

 

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Archos has released multiple Google Android tablets, but hopes a low-price Windows 8.1 tablet will help draw users in - most Windows 8.1 tablets, from Microsoft, Dell, Lenovo and other OEMs, are still rather expensive.

 

The company also introduced the Archos 40 Cesium, a 4-inch Qualcomm Snapdragon 200-powered smartphone running Windows Phone 8.1. It will be released in Europe next month for around $130.

Continue reading 'Archos preparing a Microsoft Windows 8.1 tablet for $149' (full post)

NOAA Joint Polar Satellite System ground station vulnerable to attack

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: 1 day, 17 hours ago

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is being pressured by the U.S. Department of Commerce Office of Inspector General to fix several vulnerabilities currently found in the Joint Polar Satellite System (JPSS). There are at least a few different high-risk vulnerabilities found in the JPSS ground stations that could be exploited by clever cyberattacks.

 

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Some of the issues would only require software updates or new security patches, but the NOAA is taking 11 to 14 months in some cases to fix the problems - the JPSS system requirements have 30 days to fix security problems, with the inspector general saying it shouldn't take more than three months to resolve problems.

 

"The remediation of high-risk vulnerabilities is critical to the continued success of the JPSS mission and should have a high priority," according to the report. "The more high-risk vulnerabilities that exist in the system, the higher the probability is that an attacker could compromise it. This could lead to a disruption of NOAA's ability to command and control the Suomi NPP satellite and to provide data that is used in numerical weather models that support weather predictions and climate monitoring."

Continue reading 'NOAA Joint Polar Satellite System ground station vulnerable to attack' (full post)

Massive Xbox One system update is arriving, media player included

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming Consoles | Posted: 1 day, 20 hours ago

We've been expecting this update for the Xbox One for a while now, but it's finally rolling out to users across the world, and will continue to do so over the coming days.

 

 

The new update for the Xbox One includes a new media player app, which will bring file support for MKV (which is a very big deal), animated GIFs, and DNLA support by the end of the year. We will also have new party features, new SmartGlass features, an option to boot directly to the TV, and much more. The full list of updates can be found in the full story.

Continue reading 'Massive Xbox One system update is arriving, media player included' (full post)

Assassin's Creed Unity has been delayed by two weeks to November 11

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: 1 day, 21 hours ago

Ubisoft has announced that it has delayed Assassin's Creed: Unity by two weeks, with a new release date of November 11. Assassin's Creed: Rogue launches at the same time for the previous generation consoles, the Xbox 360 and PS3, while Unity launches on current generation consoles and PC.

 

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Senior producer Vincent Pontbriand said on Ubisoft's blog today: "This being a fully next-gen game, it requires a lot of work, a lot of production, and a lot of learning. It's always hard to be precise and to quantify exactly how much work is involved. So as we get close to the finish we often realise we're near the target but we're not quite there yet."

 

2014 should be known as the year of delays, with Battlefield: Hardline being delayed through to 2015, Dragon Age: Inquisition was also delayed from October to November, The Division pushed into 2015, and more.

Apple confirms September 9 event, wishes it 'could say more'

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: 1 day, 22 hours ago

Apple has finally confirmed the September 9 event we've all known was coming for a while, sending out invitations to the media for the event that will be held at the Flint Center for the Performing Arts at De Anza College in Cupertino.

 

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The Yerba Buena Center for the Arts has a capacity of just 757, which is where Apple normally hosts its media events, but The Flint Center holds a huge 2400 people. There's not much given from Apple, apart from the tease of "Wish we could say more." It of course teases the 9/9/2014 date, where we should see the company launch either one, or two new iPhones - in 4.7 and 5.5 inches - as well as the purported iWatch.

 

It looks like we should get excited for the event, but what to expect? Just two new iPhones with an iWatch too? Will we see some true innovations from Apple after years of slight iteration changes to the iPhone? I don't know whether to get excited or not, what about you?

During peak times, Twitch has more viewers than cable TV networks

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: 1 day, 23 hours ago

Amazon didn't shell out $970 million for nothing, so it should come as no surprise that Twitch has some incredible viewer numbers. The streaming gaming outfit, when pitted against cable networks, draws more viewers in peak times than the likes of HLN, CNN, E!, MSNBC, TruTV and even MTV.

 

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Twitch's primetime viewers has hit 800,000 this year, but when we go by hours of content viewed per month, YouTube and Netflix blow Twitch away. When these numbers are looked at, Netflix is around eight times larger than Twitch, while YouTube is a massive 24 times larger, according to The New York Times.

Latest Titanfall game mode removes the titans, and AI bots

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: 2 days ago

There is a new mode in Titanfall, something that was baked into the game for its sixth update, which removes the titans and provides gamers with an 8 vs 8 shootout - no titans, no AI bots, just pure run and gun.

 

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A standard Titanfall match is 6 vs 6, so this is a nice change for those who wanted a slightly bigger player base to play with. Considering the word 'titan' is found in 'Titanfall' it's a weird mode to be introducing into the game, but why not? The new mode is called Pilot Skirmish, which should make it much closer to Call of Duty or Battlefield, which some gamers won't mind.

Australian government sues Valve over its refund policy in the country

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: 2 days, 1 hour ago

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) is suing Half-Life and Counter-Strike developer Valve, claiming that the company is breaching Australian Consumer Law. The reason? Valve doesn't offer refunds of any kind, and now the ACCC is putting its foot down as these actions are against Australian consumer law.

 

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ACCC Chairman Rod Sims explains: "The Australian Consumer Law applies to any business providing goods or services within Australia. Valve may be an American based company with no physical presence in Australia, but it is carrying on business in Australia by selling to Australian consumers, who are protected by the Australian Consumer Law." "It is a breach of the Australian Consumer Law for businesses to state that they do not give refunds under any circumstances, including for gifts and during sales. Under the Australian Consumer Law, consumers can insist on a refund or replacement at their option if a product has a major fault," Sims continued. "The consumer guarantees provided under the Australian Consumer Law cannot be excluded, restricted or modified."

 

Valve has since responded, with Doug Lombardi saying: "We are making every effort to cooperate with the Australian officials on this matter, while continuing to provide Steam services to our customers across the world, including Australian gamers."

 

Where it gets interesting, is Valve's refund policy, which states: "As with most software products, unless required by local law, we do not offer refunds or exchanges on games, DLC or in-game items purchased on our website or through the Steam Client. Please review Section 3 of the Steam Subscriber Agreement for more information." Within that refund policy, it reads "unless required by local law" so in this instance, local law requires a refund if the product is deemed faulty. An interesting turn for Australian gamers, and Valve right now.

Metro 2033 developers next game will be 'less linear, more sandbox'

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: 2 days, 2 hours ago

For fans of the Metro series, you might like to know about 4A Games' upcoming title, where the developer is shifting away from the linear gameplay of Metro 2033 and Metro: Last Light, and into the open arms of a more sandbox experience.

 

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4A Games' CTO, Oles Shishkovstov, spoke with Eurogamer earlier this week, where he said: "For the game we are working on now, our designers have shifted to a more sand-box-style experience - less linear but still hugely story-driven. I will not go into details, but it requires some work from programmers as well. Also, we are improving graphics in very different aspects, like recently we did a physically-based global ambient occlusion (instead of local, like SSAO). I will not talk about PBR (physically-based rendering) here, because here we are at the stage when artists are still adapting their mentality to it."

 

We don't know if this will be another Metro game, or something completely new, such as new IP. For Metro fans, be sure to check out the Metro Redux from 4A Games that just launched, which features an upgraded look, and some new goodies.

Google Project Wing is testing delivery drones in Australia

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Science, Space & Robotics | Posted: 2 days, 4 hours ago

Google's Project Wing effort is tasked with developing drones that can be used to deliver goods and relief aid in case of a national emergency. The drone has four propellers that are electrically driven, with a wing span up to five feet, and weighs under 19 pounds. There have been at least 30 test flights conducted in August alone, as the research team begins analyzing test flight data.

 

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The appeal of delivery drones has piqued the interest of Amazon, and it looks like Project Wing from Google will have the same type of overview. It will still take years of development before Project Wing is able to realistically develop goods, with the potential of receiving products in a short amount of time.

 

"We're now back in California reviewing what we've learned from the tests and preparing our next set of adventures," Google said in a press statement.

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