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TweakTown News Posts - Page 2299

Code seems to indicate Google Glass will allow pictures to be taken by winking

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Wearable Computing | Posted: Apr 22, 2013 11:51 pm

Code found in the Google Glass companion app seems to indicate that Google will be allowing Glass users to take pictures by simply winking. Of course, with this comes numerous different issues. For instance, it'd be nearly impossible for people to tell that someone was taking a picture, which is already a problem with the advent of cell phones.




The problem of unwanted photographs in already such a problem in South Korea that cell phone manufacturers are required to program cameras to make a shutter sound that can't be disabled by users. At the same time, hands free functionality such as this would be beautiful for taking pictures while doing things with your hands.


What are your thoughts on the possibility of taking pictures by winking? Should Google be required to have Glass make a shutter sound?

Amazon Kindle Fire tablets get access to Xbox SmartGlass app

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Apps | Posted: Apr 22, 2013 10:47 pm

Amazon has updated the Kindle app store with a bunch of new apps, including a much-anticipated Xbox SmartGlass app. The SmartGlass app is a companion app for the Xbox 360 that allows users to control their Xbox and get second-screen information, including access to Xbox Music, messaging, and other features.




The app has been available since fall for iOS and Android, but has just been made available Amazon's redesigned Kindle Fire and Kindle Fire HD. The app will scale natively to the resolutions provided by these Android tablets. If you have a Kindle Fire or Fire HD and an Xbox 360, you can download the SmartGlass app for free from the Amazon App Store.

HTC One could face more delays, Nokia gains preliminary injunction in Netherlands over microphones

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Apr 22, 2013 10:32 pm

The HTC One could be facing another delay, at least in the Netherlands. Nokia has been granted a preliminary injunction against HTC over the latter's use of high-amplitude mics in their latest flagship device. As you can see in the picture below, both the Lumia 720 and HTC One use the same dual-membrane components.




HTC is disappointed in the decision. We are considering whether it will have any impact on our business and we will explore alternative solutions immediately.


Nokia asserts that the supplier of the Lumia 720 part was supposed to be manufacturing the part exclusively for Nokia: "[the] microphone components [were] invented by and manufactured exclusively for Nokia."


This could be bad news for HTC. The One has already faced delays due to component shortages and could again be facing delays. This device is the--pardon the pun--one that HTC needs to turn their floundering company around.

Netflix to add 4-stream plan for $11.99, added 3 million subscribers in Q1

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Apr 22, 2013 9:29 pm

Netflix had a fairly successful first quarter, adding a total of over three million users around the world. In the United States alone, Netflix pulled in 2.03 million new customers. These new additions bring Netflix's total subscriber count to over 30 million, higher than that of HBO for the first time ever.




Netflix pulled in $32 million in profits off of $1 billion in revenue for the quarter. To help increase revenues, Netflix is planning to offer an $11.99 plan that would officially support streaming to up to four devices. The current limit is two, but it doesn't seem to be heavily enforced.


CEO Reed Hastings expects less than one percent of subscribers to move to the new, more expensive plan. In other news, Hastings says that fewer than 8,000 people created free trial accounts to just watch House of Cards and then quit.

Google Glass about a year away from the general consumer market

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Wearable Computing | Posted: Apr 22, 2013 9:00 pm

According to Eric Schmidt, Google Glass are about a "year-ish" away from getting a general market release. Glass was widely expected to be available sometime this year, though the new information from Schmidt during a BBC Radio 4 interview seems to suggest that this won't be the case.




Google is already releasing Explorer Editions of Glass to developers and they will get to play with them over the coming months, suggesting feedback as they go along. This feedback will then be used to improve the final version of glass before it hits the market.


He went on:

The fact of the matter is that we'll have to develop some new social etiquette. It's obviously not appropriate to wear these glasses in situations where recording is not correct. Companies like Google have a very important responsibility to keep your information safe but you have a responsibility as well which is to understand what you're doing, how you're doing it, and behave appropriately and also keep everything up to date.

Former HostGator employee allegedly installed backdoor on over 2,700 servers

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: Apr 22, 2013 6:30 pm

This morning TechSpot broke news that during 2011 and 2012 over 2700 servers hosted with HostGator were compromised when an employee installed backdoors on the machines. Prosecutors say that 29 year old Eric Gunnar Gisse of Texas was responsible for the inside hacking.




Gisse was employed by the company between September of 2011 and February 2012 as a medium level systems administrator. HostGator says that Gisse went to great lengths to hide the backdoor as a common Unix admin tool, which he renamed "pcre", which is a common system file.


No evidence was presented as to whether or not Gisse ever used the backdoor to access any of the servers remotely, but as the meme goes, "One simply does not install a backdoor onto 2700 servers without the intent to use them."


Gisse is scheduled to be arraigned next month. It's unclear if he has entered a plea as of this writing. He is being held on $20,000 bond at the Harris County Jail in Houston, TX.

SpaceTT: Mars One officially announces astronaut search for one-way trip to Mars

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Science, Space & Robotics | Posted: Apr 22, 2013 5:31 pm

This afternoon Mars One officially announced the opening of its search and application process for the first manned mission to the planet Mars. Mars One is looking for two men and two women from different nationalities to man a one-way trip to Mars in 2023.




The trip to Mars is not for the light hearted, or those who are not willing to give up everything they have known. "While it is possible that, within the lifetime of the early settlers on Mars, there will be opportunity to bring one or more back to Earth, it cannot be anticipated nor expected", reads part of the mission briefing on the website.



While I fully support this endeavor, and am immensely excited about humans leaving the planet Earth and populating another world, I still feel that a colonization mission is nothing more than suicide and will remain so until we develop a form of terraforming that would render the Martian atmosphere more hospitable for human life. I think a more technology appropriate approach would be for an orbital mission where we send explorers on a mission to orbit the planet before returning home.

Continue reading 'SpaceTT: Mars One officially announces astronaut search for one-way trip to Mars' (full post)

Google hit with $190,000 in fines over illegal WiFi snooping via Street View cars

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Apr 22, 2013 4:32 pm

Google has been using its Street View cars to snoop WiFi for years and today Germany has said enough is enough. The Hamburg Commissioner for Data Protection has just hit the search giant with a fairly large fine of $190,000.




While that fine may seem astronomical to us, Google will treat it as nothing more than a pin-prick in its deep pocketed leather skin. The fine comes three years after an investigation in which Google was found guilty of pulling WiFi data from open networks that were discovered by its Street View cars.


Personal data including emails, passwords and pictures were all recorded, but Google says that all of the data has since been deleted. While I see where this invasion of privacy is a big deal, with more and more people using Gmail, Google+, Google Drive and Android, Google already has all of our private data stored on its servers anyway.

Acer alludes to "revolutionary new notebook" in Star Trek Into Darkness teaser

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Laptops | Posted: Apr 22, 2013 3:34 pm

This morning Acer launched a new teaser video that featured glimpses of a new "revolutionary notebook" that appears to have some sort of uni-hinge design that allows the screen to flip over. The teaser is paired up with a Star Trek Into Darkness trailer, and quite well I might add.



The video concludes with a link to Acer's "Explore Beyond Limits" website which features two more Star Trek / Acer product integrated teaser videos as well as some high resolution desktop wallpapers. The new laptop looks interesting and you can expect full coverage on the device at Acer's launch event on Friday May 3rd.

Continue reading 'Acer alludes to "revolutionary new notebook" in Star Trek Into Darkness teaser' (full post)

LeakedTT: Specifications surface on NVIDIA's GeForce GTX Titan LE and Titan II video cards

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Video Cards | Posted: Apr 22, 2013 2:47 pm

This morning rumors of two new NVIDIA GeForce Titan GPU's have made their way to our ears. Website is reporting that NVIDIA is planning to launch two revisions of its flagship Titan GPU, the Titan LE and Titan II.




The new models will bring the Titan lineup to three different units that all share the same GK110 processor with the Titan LE being a slightly underclocked model, that uses marginal chips that didn't make the grade for full-fledged Titan performance. The LE will feature 2,495 CUDA cores across 208 texture mapping units, 5GB of GDDR5, and a peak power consumption rate of 190W, according to the leak.


The GTX Titan II is an upgraded model to the now famous GTX Titan and unlocks more of the GK110's power than the stock Titan. The Titan II name is said to change to Titan Ultra on launch and will feature 2,880 CUDA cores across 256 texture mapping units. Clock speed is boosted to 950MHz with RAM staying the same as the stock Titan at 6GB.


NVIDIA did not have any comments on the rumors.