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TweakTown News Posts - Page 2213

Saudi Arabia pushes for electronic tracking system... for women

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Current Affairs | Posted: Nov 23, 2012 5:29 am

At the moment, Saudi Arabian men exert quite a lot of power over women, as a woman requires a "male guardian" to approve of their travelling, and much more. Women are banned from travelling without consent 'from their male guardians', and banned from driving altogether.




It has gone a few steps worse recently, where since last week Saudi's women's male guardians began receiving text messages on their phones, which informed them when women under their custody leave the country, even if they are travelling together - yikes. This is thanks to a new electronic system that tracks any and all cross-border movements.


One woman became the symbol of a campaign that was launched last year, Manal al-Sherif, who started spreading the information through Twitter, after she was alerted by a couple. The husband was travelling with his wife, when he received a text message from the immigration authorities informing him that his wife had left the international airport in Riyadh.

Continue reading 'Saudi Arabia pushes for electronic tracking system... for women' (full post)

Galaxy Note II sporting dual-SIM slots gets donned officially in China

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Nov 23, 2012 4:36 am

If you've been waiting for that 5.5-inch Samsung Galaxy Note II to grow up and learn the ability to house two SIM cards, well, it has just been made official in China.




It sports a mix of micro and full-size SIM slots, as well as its powerhouse internals - a 1.6GHz quad-core processor, 5.5-inch Super AMOLED HD screen, and the usual radios (GSM 850/900/1, 800/1,900, WCDMA 850/900/1,900/2100 MHz).


The dual-SIM Galaxy Note II will go on sale on December 3 - so you don't have long to get a second SIM now, do you?

Google makes their indoor maps accessible to desktop, iOS and more

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Internet & Websites | Posted: Nov 23, 2012 3:46 am

Google Maps, how could we live without you (unless you're on iOS 6 - snicker)? Well, now the Android app has been joined by the desktop, which now has the ability of looking at indoor maps of shopping malls, just in time for the sales!




The feature sports around 10,000 floor plans for select locations in Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Japan, Switzerland, Sweden, the UK, and the US.


If you want to bring up a floor plan, just zoom into a building on Google Maps and as long as the data has been uploaded, you'll be able to see a birds eye view of the stores within a shopping mall, sections within a department store, or supermarket, the gate layout of an airport, or better yet - the poker tables within a casino, and more.

Continue reading 'Google makes their indoor maps accessible to desktop, iOS and more' (full post)

ASUS Padfone 2 gets teased in white, is the first time it has been shown off

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Nov 23, 2012 3:32 am

ASUS' Padfone 2 launches next month, but in order to drum up some of that sweet swagger, the Taiwanese company have started showing off the white model of the Padfone 2. Until now, the black version has been the only one unveiled.




The Padfone 2 sports nearly the same specs as the ever-so-awesome Google Nexus 4 (in terms of CPU and RAM grunt), so we're looking at a Qualcomm Snapdragon quad-core processor, 2GB of RAM, a 13-megapixel rear-facing camera and comes in either 32GB or 64GB.


The Padfone 2 won't be jumping across the pond and reaching the UK until 2013, and there's been no mention of a US launch yet, either. Until then, marvel at the white-colored Padfone 2 picture above.

US requests the most user data from Google, followed by India and Brazil

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Nov 23, 2012 2:05 am

Google updated its Transparency Report last month and it now shows more data than it previously did. The new information includes numbers on government requests to Google for user data. This means Google is reporting how many warrants or other requests for information (subpoena, etc) they get by which governments.




I'm sure you can guess which country makes the most requests of Google, and, no, it isn't Iran or China. In fact, it's the United States and Google says most of the requests are to aid in criminal investigations, however, Google "can't always be sure that a request necessarily relates to a criminal investigation."


Go figure. Following the United States, India, Brazil, France, Germany, and the United Kingdom have the next highest number of requests, but they are a good distance behind the good ol' US. The US has requested nearly 8,000 times about more than 16,000 users. 90 percent of these requests have been partially or fully complied with.


India, the number two country, has only filed 2,300 requests about 3,500 users. Only 64 percent of those were partially or completely complied with.

Continue reading 'US requests the most user data from Google, followed by India and Brazil' (full post)

YouTube app now available for Wii U

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Apps | Posted: Nov 22, 2012 11:27 pm

The Wii U wouldn't have survived without apps. Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon apps have already launched on the platform, and now, so has a YouTube app. The new app allows Wii U users to search videos, watch videos, and get additional information via their GamePad. Videos will play in resolutions up to 1080p.




Videos will be played on the television screen with the GamePad being used as a supplement. The GamePad will provide details regarding the video. The app has expected features, such as being able to search videos and flip through subscribed channels. Without features like that, the app would have been DOA.


If you're the proud owner of a Wii U, you can download the promised app from the Wii U main menu. Other video services available include Hulu, Netflix, and Amazon, all of which were promised to come with the Wii U. The apps are designed to turn the Wii U into a media hub instead of just a gaming console.

Police raid 9-year-old's home, take laptop adorned with Winnie the Pooh

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Nov 22, 2012 10:15 pm

What kind of world do we live in where police raid a house and take a 9-year-old's laptop that is adorned with Winnie the Pooh stickers? Well, apparently Finnish police feel this is an acceptable thing to do. According to TorrentFreak, police showed up at the girl's house after her dad didn't pay a fine.




CIAPC, an anti-piracy company, managed to get Finnish ISPs to block The Pirate Bay. They started tracking BitTorrent users and, in particular, this one little girl. They sent a letter, which was received by the father and owner of the internet connection, demanding a cash settlement without any sort of trial.


The father, of course, refused to pay. This prompted police to raid the home of the 9-year-old suspect and confiscate her laptop, which was decorated with Winne the Pooh stickers, mind you. "It would have been easier for all concerned if you had paid the compensation," the police advised.


"I got the feeling that there had been people from the MAFIA demanding money at the door," the girl's father explained.


"At that point my jaw hit the floor and I wasn't sure if I was awake or dreaming. So the investigator suggested, between the lines, that I empty my wallet and keep my family in hunger for the next two weeks so that they could get rid of the case? What the this how it goes? I could evade justice murder by skipping Christmas this year?"

Continue reading 'Police raid 9-year-old's home, take laptop adorned with Winnie the Pooh' (full post)

Mozilla ends Firefox 64-bit for Windows builds

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Internet Browsers | Posted: Nov 22, 2012 8:41 pm

And just like that, Mozilla has ended nightly builds of Firefox 64-bit for Windows. The reasoning behind doing so is logical and was laid out by Engineering Manager Benjamin Smedberg. Only 5 days after his post on the discussion board, nightly builds were turned off.




  • Many plugins are not available in 64-bit versions.
  • The plugins that are available don't work correctly in Firefox because we haven't implemented things like windowproc hooking, which means that hangs are more common.
  • Crashes submitted by 64-bit users are currently not high priority because we are working on other things.
  • This is frustrating for users because they feel (and are!) second-class.
  • It is also frustrating for stability team triage because crash-stats does not easily distinguish between 32-bit and 64-bit builds in the topcrash lists and other reports. We basically ignore a set of nightly "topcrashes" because they are 64-bit only. (See bug 811051).


Browsing through the discussions, it was clear that a large portion were against disabling the 64-bit version, however, some did agree with him. He then posted "Thank you to everyone who participated in this thread. Given the existing information, I have decided to proceed with disabling windows 64-bit nightly and hourly builds. Please let us consider this discussion closed unless there is critical new information which needs to be presented."

Continue reading 'Mozilla ends Firefox 64-bit for Windows builds' (full post)

Google's getting better at design quicker than Apple is getting better at web

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Nov 22, 2012 7:31 pm

Patrick Gibson posted up an interesting, and rather accurate, portrayal of Google and Apple. The biggest takeaway from the post is that Google is getting better at design, something they've been weak at, quicker than Apple is getting better at web services, something they have been weak at.




Take a look at Apple's web fails:

  • Apple can't update its online store without taking it offline first.
  • A popular Game Center game was able to bring down the entire network.
  • Apple requires you to re-friend everyone on Game Center, Find my Friends, and Shared Photostreams.
  • Notes requires an email account to sync.
  • The iTunes and App Stores are still powered by WebObjects, a mostly dead framework written almost 20 years ago.
  • iMessage for Mac lives in an alternate dimension in which time has no ordered sequence.
  • Ping.


With each revision of Android, it's UI and polish gets closer and closer to that of Apple and iOS. With the latest version, it's really starting to approach the quality of Apple's design. Apple's mantra that everything "Just Works" is more true for Google's web services, and increasingly, its hardware and Android.


Gibson suggests that Apple buy Twitter, and it's a legitimate argument. He says that Apple would benefit from the web technology and scalability that Twitter has pioneered. "Not only does Twitter use some of the most advanced web technology, they invented it.

Continue reading 'Google's getting better at design quicker than Apple is getting better at web' (full post)

Sapphire unveils AMD APU-powered Edge VS Series Mini PC

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Computer Systems | Posted: Nov 22, 2012 12:37 pm

Sapphire have just unveiled a new member of their mini-PC family, the Sapphire Edge VS series. Sapphire's new Edge VS series is powered by AMD's latest APUs, delivering great performance, graphics and more in a small form factor.




Sapphire's Edge VS series come in two different offerings, the Edge VS 4 and Edge VS 8. Starting with the Edge VS 4, which sports an AMD A4 APU, AMD Radeon HD7400G graphics, a 2.5-inch 320GB HDD and 4GB of RAM. The bigger brother, the Edge VS 8 sports AMD's A8 APU, AMD Radeon HD7600G graphics, a 2.5-inch 500GB HDD and the same 4GB of RAM.


Both units come with built-in Gigabit Ethernet, Bluetooth 3.0, built-in 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi, and both weigh in at 660g. Connectivity wise, they both include 1 x miniDisplayPort, 1 x HDMI, 2 x USB3.0, 4 x USB 2.0 ports, 1 x audio out, 1 x mic-in, and 1 x SPDIF-out. They come pre-installed with FREE-DOS, and support Windows Vista, Windows 7 and Windows 8. They consume, at maximum, just 65W.

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