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Ellen breaks Twitter records at the Oscars thanks to celebrities

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Current Affairs | Posted: Mar 4, 2014 10:29 am

Ellen broke Twitter during the Oscars, thanks to a celebrity-filled selfie that she took at the event itself. Ellen's post to Twitter broke the social network temporarily, where history was made for Twitter.




Shortly after Twitter went down, DeGeneres said: "We got an email from Twitter and we crashed and broke Twitter. We have made history". Bradley Cooper, star of American Hustle, took the picture, which was posted up to Ellen's Twitter account. He took the picture using the front-facing camera on a Samsung smartphone.


You can see a number of celebrities in the shot, including Kevin Spacey, Jennifer Lawrence, Brad Pitt, Meryl Streep, Angelina Jolie and more. The selfie saw an amazing, record-breaking 3 million re-tweets. The previous record was from US President Barack Obama, with his "Four More Years" re-election victory shot. Obama saw over 780,000 re-tweets, but now DeGeneres' re-tweet has blown that out of the water.

Windows Phone 8.1 will ship with Microsoft's voice assistant, Cortana

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Apps | Posted: Mar 4, 2014 9:31 am

Microsoft's answer to Apple's personal digital assistant, Siri, is coming with Windows Phone 8.1. Cortana has been teased by Microsoft to The Verge, where it will go head-to-head with Google Now and Apple's Siri.




Windows Phone 8.1's built-in search functionality which usually leans on Bing, will be shifted over to Cortana. Cortana will appear as a circular animated icon instead of the female character in Halo, with the diital voice assistant animating when it's speaking or thinking. This makes Cortana a much more personal experience versus the invisible, and sometimes helpful Siri.


Cortana will allow Windows Phone users to customize the assistant to their liking, where users can call people by their name, or set nicknames to their BFFs. Cortana is also capable of saving information and data in a Notebook system, which allows Cortana to access information such as location data, behaviors, personal information, reminders, and contact information.

Continue reading 'Windows Phone 8.1 will ship with Microsoft's voice assistant, Cortana' (full post)

Pizza Hut's concept touch table makes ordering pizza fun

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Mar 4, 2014 8:33 am

Pizza Hut has joined forces with Chaotic Moon Studios to build an interactive table which you sit at, and order your pizza by touching the table itself. You can pinch-to-zoom your pizza to make it small, regular or large, and then the fun starts by sliding on your toppings.



It's an ingenuous way of getting people to stay in the brick-and-mortar store, as you can order your sides from the table, finish it up by tapping your phone to the table to complete the payment and then when it's all said and done, you can play some games on the touch table while you're waiting for your pizza to be made.

Continue reading 'Pizza Hut's concept touch table makes ordering pizza fun' (full post)

Sony Pictures 1998 'Godzilla' roars to Blu-ray in May

By: Ben Gourlay | More News: Celebrities & Entertainment | Posted: Mar 4, 2014 8:11 am

In preparation for the May theatrical release of the Godzilla reboot, Sony Pictures has announced the upcoming Blu-ray release of the much lambasted (but ultimately financially successful) 1998 Godzilla, which was directed by Roland Emmerich, produced by Dean Devlin (of Independence Day fame) and starred Matthew Broderick playing second fiddle to the computer generated colossus himself.




Godzilla 1998 is scheduled to come to Blu-ray on May 1st and whilst Sony Pictures have yet to detail the discs features, it should feature an audio commentary, featurettes and a Wallflowers music video, along with 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio and UltraViolet digital copy.




Godzilla 2014 starring Bryan Cranston and Aaron Taylor-Johnson and directed by Gareth Edward will hit Australian cinemas two weeks later on May 15th from Warner and Legendary Pictures.

Qualcomm-powered devices ruled Mobile World Congress this year

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Mar 4, 2014 7:27 am

MWC 2014 - Mobile World Congress has come and gone for another year, but now that the mobile extravaganza is all wrapped up and finished, we can reflect on the show that was. Moor Insights & Strategy, a technology analyst company, walked around the event taking notes on what companies were showing off.




What they saw was surprising, with Qualcomm powering a considerable chunk of the mobile devices at MWC 2014. You can see in the image above, that Qualcomm powered significantly more devices than Intel, with MediaTek powering nearly the same as Intel, another surprising take on things. This of course doesn't represent all devices, but just the ones that Moor Insights & Strategy had taken note of.


Intel is only starting to rev its mobile engine, but from the looks of things Qualcomm is definitely has a massive head start. We can see that Qualcomm is powering some of the most popular, best-selling and future best-sellers on the market, such as the upcoming Galaxy S5 from Samsung, the Nexus 5 and Nexus 7 from LG and Google, as well as the LG G Pro 2, and many, many more.

City of Detroit hit by data breach, former and current employees hit

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: Mar 4, 2014 5:27 am

Detroit city officials confirmed as many as 1,700 current and former city workers are at risk following a data breach that targeted "personal identifying information."




"Our initial investigation shows not like many other places, it was malware that came through e-mail and somebody clicked a link," said Beth Niblock, the city's chief information officer, told CBS Detroit. "The malware locks files indiscriminately - it doesn't know what it's doing... it doesn't know the nature of the information in the files and really the purpose of that is just to really lock the files and make it inaccessible."


It's possible the city mistakenly installed some type of "ransomware," such as Cryptolocker, which encrypts files - or carries out another harmful task - and demands payment before files are decrypted. Typically, an ideal solution is to improve anti-malware defenses and restore from a previous backup, which the city IT team hopefully did somewhat recently.

Continue reading 'City of Detroit hit by data breach, former and current employees hit' (full post)

Netflix phishing scam tricks subscribers to steal data from their PC

By: Roshan Ashraf Shaikh | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: Mar 4, 2014 5:13 am

There's a new phishing scheme which involves Netflix and using the fear of having your account suspended unless you call the company's 'tech support'. Jerome Segura of Malwarebytes Unpacked uncovered 'Tech Support' scammers where they try to use Netflix account suspicion scare to steal its victims' photos, name, address, passwords and even credit cards.




Segura said that the error from Netflix urged him to call the 1-800 number on the screen, which was not the official support number and therefore prompted deeper investigation. Upon contacting the fake tech support, the representative made him download a 'Netflix Support Software' which turned out to be Teamviewer. After the remote connection was made, the scammer said that his account was suspended because of 'illegal activity' and showed 'proof' using a 'Foreign IP Tracer' which was a custom-made Windows batch script.

Continue reading 'Netflix phishing scam tricks subscribers to steal data from their PC' (full post)

Gabe Newell skips on Reddit AMA on 3/3... Half-Life 3 confirmed?!

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: Mar 4, 2014 4:05 am

Rewinding back to January, Valve boss Gabe Newell promised that he would do an AMA (Ask Me Anything) on Reddit, if $500,000 or more was donated to charity through The Heart of Racing. The amount was reached, and today was the day that Newell was meant to do his AMA... but he didn't.




Using uber math skills, we know that 3/3 and that Valve is scared of using the number three - but is Newell scared of stepping anywhere near it? Is this the reason why the AMA was not done today, and seems to have been pushed back until tomorrow? We should hopefully hear something tomorrow, but I highly doubt it'll be what people really want to hear about: Half-Life 3.

Popular event notification site, Meetup, down for days due to DDoS

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: Mar 4, 2014 3:40 am

Meetup is one of those websites that almost everyone has used at some point, and with more than 12 years of an online presence it is no surprise that many have grown to depend on the service for spreading the word about their meetings. Unfortunately for the last several days, Meetup has been experiencing a massive Distributed Denial of Service attack (DDoS) that has crippled its servers and rendered the service unusable.




While the attack lessens from time to time, I have only noticed the service up twice over the last 4 days with it being back down within an hour of it coming back online. The attack is non political, and is purely designed to extort money from the company behind Meetup. An email arrived in CEO, Scott Heiferman's, inbox shortly after the attack began that read; "A competitor asked me to perform a DDoS attack on your website. I can stop the attack for $300 USD. Let me know if you are interested in my offer."


Meetup chose not to pay the extortionist even though the amount demanded was extremely small as it has a policy not to negotiate with criminals. At the time of this writing Meetup was back up, but has been down on and off for most of the day. The company says that it is working on restoring stability, and hopes that things will return to normal shortly.

Kickstarter surpasses $1 billion in pledges since first launching

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Mar 4, 2014 3:39 am

Today Kickstarter announced that it has surpassed over $1 billion in crowd-funding pledges since the site first launched on the 28th April of 2009. Speaking of that date, users pledged a mere $1084 to just 7 featured projects in the first 24 hours the site was live. Fast forward to March 13th, 2013, just 4 years later, and more than 54,187 backers committed to more than $4,029,585 to 1,985 projects in a single day.




To celebrate this milestone in Kickstarter's history, the company released a nifty micro-site that unveils some interesting facts about the crowd-funding websites biggest and best days as well as its most popular backers. Wednesday has been the most popular day of the week to back a project with more than $160 million pledged. Sunday seems to be the least popular day to back projects with just over $100 million pledged. $619 million of the $1 billion was pledged by returning backers, and 1,689,979 people have backed more than one project. Interestingly enough 15,932 people have backed more than 50 projects on Kickstarter.

Continue reading 'Kickstarter surpasses $1 billion in pledges since first launching' (full post)