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Co-creator of Call of Duty, Jason West, leaves his new studio Respawn Entertainment

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Mar 5, 2013 4:33 am

You might remember Infinity Ward, the creators of Call of Duty - but that can be rolled into two men - Jason West and Vince Zampella. The two of them left IW on fiery terms and started up Respawn Entertainment.

 

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West has now left the studio, citing family issues which have been on-going since May 2012, according to a source who didn't want to be named. West's partner, Vince, confirmed the news, saying:

 

Jason has left Respawn to take care of some family issues. We have worked together on some amazing accomplishments over the years, starting with an early Segasoft project that never shipped. It is sad to see things come to an end, but there are times when change is best for growth, both personally and professionally. I wish Jason the best and send my best wishes to his family. Respawn continues to amaze me, the team here is resilient and talented. E3 will be therapeutic for us, as we finally get to start showing our work again. I know the team was excited about the response we got from just admitting we were going to attend.

Kim Dotcom wants to create a Bitcoin credit card, would you want a Megacard?

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Mar 5, 2013 3:33 am

Kim Dotcom is constantly in the news, usually for his court case, his previous MegaUpload website, his skills in Call of Duty, but now he's in the news for an entirely new reason - finance. Dotcom has asked his twitter followers for help in making a Bitcoin-based credit card.

 

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The card would likely be attached to his new site, Mega, but be based off of the non-fiat-based currency, Bitcoins. It would be an interesting venture for Dotcom, something I'm going to be following closely.

Raspberry Pi will be released in a limited edition blue

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Computer Systems | Posted: Mar 5, 2013 2:01 am

In celebration of the first anniversary of Raspberry Pi, RS Components, one of the two main manufacturing distributors for Raspberry Pi, is releasing a limited edition run of 1000 blue Raspberry Pis complete with matching blue cases from One Nine Design.

 

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Ironically, blue is the traditional color used for raspberry flavoring. Raspberry-flavored slushies and Jolly Ranchers are both blue. Unfortunately most people won't be able to get their hands on one of these special edition Raspberry Pis. Most are heading to charitable causes, though some are being given away in a competition.

 

For four weeks from today, everyone who tweets #bluepi to @RSElectronics along with a suggestion for uses for a blue Pi, or with a great Pi design idea, will be entered into a competition to win one. (Please tweet your entries to @RSElectronics - don't leave your entry here in the comments, because it won't be counted.) Every week, the top ten entries will be selected by a panel from RS and the Raspberry Pi Foundation, and those ten winners will be sent a blue Pi. Easy! There will be another competition when these four weeks are up - RS will be running Blue Pi events until June.

Microsoft ending 'scroogled' ad campaign

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Mar 5, 2013 1:37 am

Microsoft has ended its advertising war against Google. The ad campaign known as "Scroogled" is no longer being featured on TV or in newspapers. While it doesn't seem to have had an impact on Google's market share, at least by one measure Microsoft's ad campaign has been a success.

 

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Microsoft originally set out to get 25,000 signatures on its Care2 petition. The petition was to "tell Google to stop going through your email to sell ads." Over 110,000 people ended up signing the petition, marking the campaign as a success.

 

If you haven't seen the ads, one is embedded below. The attacking nature of the ads are reminiscent of a political campaign and seemed to backfire on Microsoft. What are your thoughts on the ad campaign?

Continue reading 'Microsoft ending 'scroogled' ad campaign' (full post)

Crysis 3 on the Wii U 'had to die'; port was running and close to launch

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Gaming | Posted: Mar 5, 2013 12:02 am

Due to a "lack of business support between Nintendo and EA," Crytek was forced to pull the plug on the Crysis 3 port for Wii U. EA is the company that owns the publishing rights to the Crysis series of games. Without those rights, Crytek is unable to publish the game without EA.

 

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In an interview with VentureBeat, Crytek's Cevat Yerli said:

 

We did have Crysis 3 running on the Wii U. We were very close to launching it. But there was a lack of business support between Nintendo and EA on that. Since we as a company couldn't launch on the Wii U ourselves - we don't have a publishing license - Crysis 3 on Wii U had to die.

 

The issue apparently stems from the fact EA would like to get the Origin digital distribution platform onto the Nintendo Wii U. I'm not so convinced that the Crysis 3 Wii U port would have even been any good. Controls would probably have been pretty bad, though the Wii U hardware is reportedly able to run the game.

Evasi0n jailbreak tool downloaded over 14m times

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Software | Posted: Mar 4, 2013 11:34 pm

@pod2g has tweeted new statistics about the adoption of the evasi0n jailbreak tool. According to the tweet, 14,051,500 unique devices have connected to Cydia running iOS 6.x. 23 million unique devices have connected to Cydia in the last month meaning that evasi0n has enabled a large group of users to update to iOS 6.x.

 

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The evasi0n jailbreak was released a month ago and was the fastest adopted jailbreak ever. It took just four days for the jailbreak to be adopted by seven million users.

 

New statistic from @saurik: 14,051,500 unique devices have been seen running Cydia on iOS 6.x! 14 millions! and 23 millions any version.

Apple updates Java to patch zero-day vulnerability

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: Mar 4, 2013 11:06 pm

Apple has released an update to Java 6 that patches a zero-day vulnerability discovered a few days ago. Mac OS X Lion and Mountain Lion users should download the Java for OS X 2013-002 update so that they aren't susceptible to the zero-day exploit that has been used in the wild. Mac OS X 10.6 Update 14 can be used for Snow Leopard users.

 

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Oddly enough, Oracle delivers updates for Java 7, while Apple is tasked with keeping Java 6 updated.

ReportTT: Samsung Galaxy S4 will use eye tracking to scroll pages

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Mar 4, 2013 10:33 pm

According to The New York Times, the Samsung Galaxy S4 will track a user's eyes to enable scrolling on webpages. Their source, a Samsung employee who spoke on a condition of anonymity, says that software will take a precedence over hardware in the upcoming Galaxy S4 device.

 

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Samsung has filed for a trademark of "Samsung Eye Scroll" in the United States back in February. The device will track a user's eyes and use that to determine where to scroll. Imagine finishing reading a paragraph on a webpage. When you're eyes reach the last line, the device will automatically scroll to the next paragraph.

 

This isn't the first time that Samsung has employed eye tracking. Their current Galaxy S3 device makes use of the feature called Smart Stay to know not to dim the screen when it's being looked at. We'll hopefully see this feature demonstrated at the press event on March 14, though it hasn't been confirmed that it will be making an appearance.

LeakedTT: Samsung Galaxy S4 benchmark confirms rumored specs, said to use plastic body

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Mar 4, 2013 10:03 pm

Faryaab Sheikh, an Android developer, tweeted a picture of the AnTuTu benchmark that shows the Samsung Galaxy S4 features the Exynos 5410 1.8GHz 4+4 CPU. Furthermore, it confirms the 4.99-inch 1920x1080 display that has been rumored for months. The GPU is a PowerVR SGX 544MP.

 

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Of course, benchmarks can be faked, but this one seems to confirm the rumored specifications that have been floating around. Others have also said that the new Galaxy S4 will continue Samsung's history of using plastic shells for the device. One of the nice things about the new HTC One is the aluminum case. It just gives the device a premium feel.

 

According to those who have reportedly touched the device, it will use a similar plastic body to the Galaxy S3.

White House backs cell phone unlocking after We The People petition

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Mar 4, 2013 9:32 pm

The White House has thrown its support behind legalizing cell phone unlocking after a We The People petition achieved the 100,000 signature requirement. The practice of unlocking cellular devices was banned earlier this year after the Library of Congress ruled that it violates the DMCA.

 

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White House Senior Advisor R. David Edelman:

 

The White House agrees with the 114,000+ of you who believe that consumers should be able to unlock their cell phones without risking criminal or other penalties. In fact, we believe the same principle should also apply to tablets, which are increasingly similar to smart phones. And if you have paid for your mobile device, and aren't bound by a service agreement or other obligation, you should be able to use it on another network. It's common sense, crucial for protecting consumer choice, and important for ensuring we continue to have the vibrant, competitive wireless market that delivers innovative products and solid service to meet consumers' needs.

 

Sina Khanifar, the person who kicked off the petition:

 

This is a big victory for consumers, and I'm glad to have played a part in it. A lot of people reacted skeptically when I originally started the petition, with lots of comments to the effect of 'petitions don't do anything.' The optimist in me is really glad to have proved them wrong. The White House just showed that they really do listen, and that they're willing to take action.

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