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More layoffs from Valve reported, CEO statement released to curb rumors

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Current Affairs | Posted: Feb 14, 2013 4:20 pm

Yesterday we reported on the very talented Jeri Ellsworth being let go from her position on Valve's Steam Box development team, and today it appears that even more layoffs have taken place.

 

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While the extent of the layoffs is unknown at the moment, sources are reporting that Valve may have terminated the employment of as many as 25 people. In addition to Ellsworth, Jason Holtman was also let go. Jason was head of Steam's business network, and was the person publishers negotiated with before their games appeared on Steam.

 

With rumors and accusations mounting, Valve CEO Gabe Newell released the following statement:

 

"We don't usually talk about personnel matters for a number of reasons. There seems to be an unusual amount of speculation about some recent changes here, so I thought I'd take the unusual step of addressing them. No, we aren't cancelling any projects. No, we aren't changing any priorities or projects we've been discussing. No, this isn't about Steam or Linux or hardware or [insert game name here]. We're not going to discuss why anyone in particular is or isn't working here."

Continue reading 'More layoffs from Valve reported, CEO statement released to curb rumors' (full post)

No Tegra 4 mobile processor until July, says NVIDIA - delays devices such as Project Shield

By: Charles Gantt | More News: CPU, APU & Chipsets | Posted: Feb 14, 2013 3:23 pm

NVIDIA CEO Jen-Hsun Huang has gone on record saying that we will not see its latest-generation and flagship mobile processor, the Tegra 4, ship until July. This will almost certainly push back launch dates of anticipated devices such as NVIDIA's own Project Shield.

 

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During a conference call, Huang said:

 

"We will ship Tegra 4 starting in Q2. We are ramping production now and we will have full production release. The second quarter is when we ship to customers. Q2 is also when we ship the Tegra 4 based Shield device. Although it is in the latter part of Q2, it is going to be in Q2."

 

NVIDIA's Tegra 4 uses ARM's latest design, the Cortex-A15, which uses 45 percent less power than previous models. The Tegra 4 also features a GeForce GPU with 72 cores with up to six times the graphics performance of the Tegra 3.

Security flaw found in Apple's iOS 6.1 OS, password lock screen not secure

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Feb 14, 2013 2:32 pm

Password locking your iPhone instills a certain sense of security, you feel safe that if stolen, you phone may not give up its data easily. This morning, if your phone is running iOS 6.1, you can toss that feeling of security out the window.

 

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A recently discovered security flaw in Apple's iOS 6.1 will let anyone with the right knowledge bypass your iPhone's password protected lock screen. The password lock can be bypassed by making an emergency call, then canceling it immediately. You then must hold the power button down twice.

 

 

A similar bug affected iOS 4.1, which was fixed in 4.2. We expect Apple is working on patching this bug as well. I was unable to confirm the bug as I am a loyal Android user.

Continue reading 'Security flaw found in Apple's iOS 6.1 OS, password lock screen not secure' (full post)

RumorTT: We could see a small form factor Surface Pro from Microsoft

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Feb 14, 2013 1:40 pm

With the success of Apple's iPad mini, and Google's Nexus 7, it is only a matter of time before Microsoft jumps into the small tablet market. During the Goldman Sachs Technology and Internet conference on Wednesday, Microsoft CFO Peter Klein, said that the company is open to and willing to bring a wide range of new form factors to the mobile device market.

 

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Not only is the company considering a small form factor Surface Pro, but they alluded to being able to produce devices as large as 27 inches. "We're set up for that," Klein said "The notion of flexibility and scalability of the operating system is intrinsic to our strategy."

 

Klein went on to say:

 

"We can have the same core code base driving form factors from four inches all the way up to 27-inch ones and everything in between. So I think we are well set up to respond to demand as we see it. We can deliver a versatile set of experiences across form factors, whether they're four-inch, five-inch, seven-inch, 10-inch or 13-inch."

Continue reading 'RumorTT: We could see a small form factor Surface Pro from Microsoft' (full post)

System Shock 2 coming to GOG.com, Steam on its way

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: Feb 14, 2013 12:35 pm

I'm sure there are a bunch of you out there that have the same fond memories of playing System Shock 2 way back when games were actually difficult and you didn't have a three-hour baby steps through the game tutorial.

 

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Over the years, it has gotten harder to acquire System Shock 2 as every iteration of Windows piles on top of Windows XP, but now it's coming to GOG.com's catalog on Thursday morning. A Steam release is also coming, but there's no ETA on that version just yet.

LG's 55-inch OLED HDTV ships next week to Korea, just 100 pre-orders so far

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Displays & Projectors | Posted: Feb 14, 2013 10:34 am

LG's 55-inch OLED HDTV is set to ship next week, with the South Korean electronics giant seeing 100 local pre-orders of their OLED screen. Shipments will begin filtering out to consumers next week for around $10,000.

 

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Considering the company sold 300 of their 84-inch Ultra HDTVs in Korea last month, these 100 pre-orders aren't stellar. LG also mentioned that they plan ton sell as many as 15% more HDTVs this year than they did last year, where they're going to continue to push their Smart and 3D features.

GameStop CFO says that 60% of customers wouldn't buy a new console that blocked used games

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: Feb 14, 2013 9:35 am

Next-gen consoles are nearly here, not including the Nintendo Wii U, and we're hearing that the next-gen Xbox might not be capable of playing used games. Just how much does this piss off gamers? Well, according to the GameStop CFO, a lot.

 

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Rob Lloyd, CFO of GameSpot during his recent speech at the Goldman Sachs Technology and Internet Conference said that 60% of customers said they would not buy the next-gen consoles if they meant they couldn't play used, or second hand games. Lloyd told those at the event that consumers like the ability to play pre-owned games, as well as having the portability and physicality in games.

 

Not having these abilities, such as buying a pre-owned game, would stop consumers - nearly 60% of them - from buying a next-gen console that isn't capable of playing used games. Lloyd noted that around 4% of GameStop's used game sales are for games that had been released in the last 60 days - this is a huge fact for used games.

Continue reading 'GameStop CFO says that 60% of customers wouldn't buy a new console that blocked used games' (full post)

Olympus aren't doing too well, says that SLRs aren't dead

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Feb 14, 2013 8:39 am

It's a hard market for camera right now, and after both Canon and Nikon both had revisions to their forecasts, Olympus have also followed by cutting their full-year sales and profit forecast.

 

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Olmypus have said that they expect sales to tip at around $7.8 billion, down from their first forecast of $8.09 billion. Profits will drop by 25%, too. When most people think Olympus, they think cameras, but Olympus aren't all just about cameras - they have pushed into the medical equipment and endoscope markets, too.

 

Last year saw Sony buy a $642 million stake in Olympus which was mainly for the medical imaging side of things. Over the past two years, Olympus' main goals have been to focus on their Pen and OM-D interchangeable lends (ILC) cameras, which has caused people to think the company were slowly dragging themselves out of the traditional SLR market.

Continue reading 'Olympus aren't doing too well, says that SLRs aren't dead' (full post)

As Android 4.2.2 rolls out, users discover it blocks Nexus 4 LTE tweak

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Operating Systems | Posted: Feb 14, 2013 7:34 am

I'm still waiting for Android 4.2.2 to roll out over-the-air to my Nexus 4, but in the meantime, other users around the world are getting their slightly tweaked Android OS baked into their devices.

 

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Well, a few surprises with this release, where there's a tweak to the quick settings that popped up in Android 4.2, which used to act by tapping Wi-Fi or Bluetooth taking you directly to the relative setting screen. Now? You can switch them on and off with a long press, a slight change, but something nice to see.

 

When downloading apps with Android 4.2.2, there's a new progress indicator that tells you the remaining time on your download. Also included, is users reporting much faster image loading within the Gallery application. If you were using the workaround to give your Nexus 4 LTE, that's gone, folks.

Iceland government thinking about banning online porn

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Feb 14, 2013 5:36 am

The government of Iceland is talking about introducing an Internet filter which would stop Icelandic citizens from downloading or viewing pornography on the Internet. The talk of the filter has transpired through fears of the damages porn can do to children and women.

 

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Iceland's Interior Minister, Ogmundur Jonasson, is currently drafting legislation to stop the access of online porn images and videos through many ways - computers, consoles and smart devices. He says:

 

We have to be able to discuss a ban on violent pornography, which we all agree has a very harmful effects on young people and can have a clear link to incidences of violent crime.

Continue reading 'Iceland government thinking about banning online porn' (full post)

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