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Apple fined for selling unauthorized work in iBookstore

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Apr 25, 2013 8:01 pm

Apple has been hit with a fine after selling an unauthorized work via its iBookstore. China's Writer's Right Protection Union sued on behalf of three authors who had their works published on the iBookstore platform. The Beijing No. 2 Intermediate People's Court ruled in favor of the Union, stating that Apple didn't verify the publishers had the right to upload the works.




The writers involved this time include Mai Jia, whose books are often on best-seller lists across the country. In this way, Apple has the capability to know the uploaded books on its online store violated the writer's copyright.


So, how much was Apple fined for this neglect? 730,000 yuan, or about $118,000. Small potatoes for a company like Apple, but it does start to add up after awhile. It's likely not large enough to encourage Apple to implement real change to prevent something like this from happening again. Real change would involve hiring more people, which costs money.

Twitter for Mac updated with Retina support, 14 new languages

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Software | Posted: Apr 25, 2013 7:29 pm

Twitter's client built for Mac OS X has been updated with Retina support, along with several other features and improvements. This marks the first major update in almost two years. Aside from Retina display support, Twitter has added simplified photo-sharing options and support for 14 new languages.




Now Twitter is even more vibrant and detailed on the highest resolution Mac notebooks. With this update, Tweets will be clearer and sharper, creating a more vivid experience.


Twitter has also renewed its commitment to the Twitter for Mac application. Ben Sandofsky, product lead for Twitter, tweeted that he's "taking a break from iOS to work on Twitter for Mac full time." This should hopefully result in more features and improvements in the coming weeks and months.


However, a Twitter spokesperson was slightly less forthcoming: "We don't have anything specific to share in regards to future plans for the app."

Google adds profile pictures, and single-click group chat to Drive

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Internet & Websites | Posted: Apr 25, 2013 7:03 pm

Google Drive is one of the productivity tools that I do not think I could live without. I use it for note taking during meetings, collaboration on projects, and even as a file sharing service for documents. This morning, Google announced some improvements to the service that should make life easier and more feature rich for those like me who use the service daily with others.




Over the next few days, users will see the addition of profile photos, one-click group chats, and even a completely new look for anonymous users. Once the update rolls out, a profile photo will be displayed at the top of a file that was created and shared to you by another user. Google is hoping that this will help you better notice everyone who is in the file with you.




In addition to the profile photo being displayed, you will be able to click on the image and add that user to your Google+ circles. Anonymous users are also affected by this change and you will see them appear as a different icon chosen at random from the list above.

Pirate Bay sails ship to Iceland, avoids iceberg in Sweden

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Internet & Websites | Posted: Apr 25, 2013 6:28 pm

Earlier this month I reported that The Pirate Bay would be switching to the .GL top level domain amidst speculation that Sweedish officials would soon seize the .se domain name. Unfortunately, Greenland officials decided that they wanted no part of the Pirate Bay's armada and suspended the purchased .gl domain before anything could be migrated.




This led to the Pirate Bay having to look yet again for a new home. This time the Pirate Bay has dropped its anchor in the land of icelandic nords, and as of this posting can be found at The choice to move to to Iceland was due to its recent pronouncement as a safehaven for those seeking true freedom of speech. When asked if it would seek to follow Greenland's lead and shut down the domain, the ISNIC had the following to say:


The short answer is no. Such an action would require a formal order from an Icelandic court. ISNIC is not responsible for a registrant's usage of their domains. This policy applies equally to any .is domain. It's the domain owner's responsibility to abide by the law, not ours. There is an article in our registration rules which states that 'the registrant is responsible for ensuring that the use of the domain is within the limits of Icelandic law as current at any time'.

Corsair announces Obsidian 350D high performance mATX chassis

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Cases, Cooling & PSU | Posted: Apr 25, 2013 5:55 pm

This morning Corsair unveiled the next chassis in its Obsidian series of high performance PC cases. The Obsidian Series 350D brings a new level of expansion, cooling and portability to the table. Like its larger Obsidian brethren, the 350D sports a sleek black brushed aluminum finish, and is designed with the custom PC enthusiast in mind.




The case is set up for fast, clean and tool-free builds as well as advanced cable management. The 350D supports both micro-ATX and mini-ITX motherboards and is roomy enough for liquid cooling, dual 3.5-inch hard drives, dual 2.5-inch drives and even dual 5.25-inch optical drives. The case has room for five expansion cards, five fan mounting points, and can fit dual 240mm radiators.




Thi La, Senior VP and GM of Memory and Enthusiast Component Products at Corsair said:

The Obsidian 350D's versatile expansion options give builders the ability to pack a lot of performance into a smaller form factor. Its stylish, compact design makes it a perfect high-performance PC case for smaller living spaces or for gaming LAN parties.


The Corsair Obsidian Series 350D is set at a MSRP of $109.99 and is available major retailers now.

RumorTT: Motorola X Phone benchmarked, shows it running Android 5.0

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Apr 25, 2013 3:38 pm

This morning a screenshot appeared online of what appears to be an AnTuTu benchmark ran on the Google / Motorola X Phone. While the benchmark is cool, the truly interesting thing to be noted is the name change.




Having long been rumored as the Motorola X Phone, the screenshot shows that the device used in the benchmark was named Google X. While this could be a development codename, it is more likely that the X Phone takes on Google's name and could even become the Nexus X. To me this makes more sense as Motorola is deep in branding for the Razr line of phones.




The screenshot also seems to confirm rumors that the X Phone will run Android 5.0.1 codenamed Key Lime Pie, which was rumored to be unveiled at Google I/O. Unfortunately there are more rumors that Key Lime Pie will not make an I/O appearance due to development delays and setbacks.

New Apple patents depicts iPhone remote unlocker, remote engine starting, and parking locator for automobiles

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Technology in Vehicles | Posted: Apr 25, 2013 3:02 pm

This morning the United States Patent and Trade Office published a number of patents filed by Apple, two of which related to Apple's aspirations to further integrate into the automobile tech market.




The two patents describe systems that would let you control your car from an iPhone and perform such task as unlocking the doors, starting the engine remotely, and helping you figure out where you parked in that massive parking lot or parking building. The system would pair the phone and car over Bluetooth and would use a mapping system to figure out where the car is parked.




The other interesting patent involves using an iPhone to remotely start your vehicle, which is actually nothing new, but the patent picks up where others left off. Users would be able to set rules on what time periods the car can be remotely started, set a maximum speed limit for teenage drivers, and even limiting the use of the radio, or other so-called infotainment devices while the car is being operated.

Continue reading 'New Apple patents depicts iPhone remote unlocker, remote engine starting, and parking locator for automobiles' (full post)

Skype finally makes its way onto BlackBerry 10, but only on the Q10 smartphone

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Apps | Posted: Apr 25, 2013 2:28 pm

News on the BlackBerry 10 front has been a little slow as of late, but this morning we are learning that Skype has finally made it into the company's app store. This is a pretty big deal considering how much Skype on BB10 was talked up at the launch, yet it has taken four months to appear.




BlackBerry Z10 owners should not get excited, though. The popular messaging and video chat service is only compatible with the Q10, which runs the latest version of BB10. This means that while the Skype is technically available on BB10, no one in the US, UK or Canada can use it at the moment.


BlackBerry says that Skype support for the Z10 is coming, but we will not see any progress made until the Q10 goes on sale. The Q10 is expected to hit the UK on April 29th with Canada following on May 1st, and a US launch in late May.

More EA asset closures on the horizon, EA Partners to be shut down

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Gaming | Posted: Apr 25, 2013 1:46 pm

If any company has had a rough past 12 months, it has to be EA. Sales expectations were not met on big name titles such as Crysis 3, APB, and Kingdom of Amalur: The Reckoning. To top that off, several of EA's major releases such as SimCity have been plagued with issues since launch.




This morning there are several reports that EA will be closing its Partners asset as a direct result of the recent shortfalls. EA Partners is the publishing force of EA that worked with external developers like Valve to produce games like The Orange Box and Portal 2's retail versions.


Basically the idea behind EA Partners was to allow smaller developers to leverage EA's skill and experience to help promote titles without the need of an expensive dedicated in-house team. News of this pending closure comes hot on the heels of EA shutting down its Montreal Studio.


No official word has been released from EA at this point, but we are hoping to hear something soon.

SMART Storage Systems and Diablo Technologies enter partnership

By: Paul Alcorn | More News: IT/Datacenter | Posted: Apr 25, 2013 12:00 pm

Today SMART Storage Systems and Diablo Technologies are announcing a new partnership to the world. This partnership has actually been working feverishly in the background for a year and a half developing a radical new storage technology. Details of the new technology are scarce and reading the press release generates more questions than answers.




Luckily, we were able to catch up with Smart Storage Systems president John Scaramuzzo and Diablo founder and CEO Richard Badalone for an in-depth interview to shed more light on this new approach.


The high-level takeaway from the announcement is the upcoming release of a new class of storage from this new partnership, vaguely described as Ultra Low Latency (ULL) SSDs. The coming products are the fusion of SMART's Guardian Technology and Diablo's Memory Channel Storage (MCS) technologies. This new class of storage will radically transform enterprise server, virtualization, and cloud environments by taking a new approach to connecting NAND flash to the server.

Continue reading 'SMART Storage Systems and Diablo Technologies enter partnership' (full post)