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Raspberry Pi upgraded with new microSD card slot and more

By: Shane McGlaun | More News: Maker & DIY | Posted: Jul 14, 2014 1:00 pm

Electronics tinkerers love the Raspberry Pi because it is cheap and has some very cool uses. The little Raspberry Pi has been updated again and this time it gains some very cool features that fans will really appreciate. This latest model is called the Raspberry Pi Model B+.

 

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The main new feature of the upgraded Pi is a microSD card slot that is a push-push unit rather than the old friction fit. Changes to the connector layout mean that existing cases may not work for the B+ version of the Pi. Some of the add-ons won't work either, such as the Adafruit Cobbler and Wolfson audio card.

 

The Raspberry Pi Foundation says that this will be the last evolution of the original Pi and that the next version will be Version 2. The Pi also gets the ability to power memory sticks and other items through the USB port. Other changes for stability and usability were made as well.

Ford confirms 500k vehicles under NHTSA investigation for steering

By: Shane McGlaun | More News: Business, Politics & Money | Posted: Jul 14, 2014 12:03 pm

Automakers have been hit hard with huge recalls all around the world, perhaps the hardest hit is GM with tens of thousands of vehicles being recalled so far. Ford has now confirmed that a huge number of its vehicles are being investigated by the NHTSA for steering issues.

 

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The exact number of Ford vehicles under investigation is about 500,000 and models covered in the investigation include the Crown Victoria, Grand Marquis, and Marauder from 2004 to 2007. The NHTSA says that the heat shield on these cars can rust and dislodge causing the steering to jam.

 

Reports of five accidents related to the issue have been reported with one causing an injury. Ford is cooperating with the investigation.

Tekken 7 to use Unreal Engine 4, expected on next-gen consoles

By: Shane McGlaun | More News: Gaming Consoles | Posted: Jul 14, 2014 11:03 am

Fans of arcade fighting games will probably have some fond memories of the Tekken franchise. This game franchise has been around for six iterations and has some of the most memorable characters and game play in the fighter genre. The next installment in the franchise was announced at EVO 2014.

 

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Tekken 7 is in the works and along with the tease that the game is coming at the EVO 2014 tournament comes a trailer for the game, which you can see here. What we know about the game right now is that it will use Unreal Engine 4, and it is expected to be available on next-gen consoles. There is no word on when it will launch.

 

Game producer Katsuhiro Harada said: "With Unreal Engine 4, we can rapidly achieve visual quality expected on next-gen platforms and go beyond it. Not only is Unreal Engine 4 powerful and easy to use, but it also allows us to bring Tekken 7 to any platform we desire."

Scientists patent a new flexible nano-pixel bendable screen technology

By: Roshan Ashraf Shaikh | More News: Wearable Computing | Posted: Jul 14, 2014 10:24 am

Scientists were able to invent a nano-pixel ultra high definition. The researchers at the Oxford University were able to achieve this by using a very small layer of a phase-change material which also allows you to be bend while maintains thousandths of a millimetre thickness.

 

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Phase change materials are used for heat management purposes, and is used in rewritable DVDs. The layer is kept between two transparent electrodes and were able to produce pixels are as small as 300 nanometers which is smaller than the width of a human hair.This technology and has a lot of usefulness especially for wearable technology that benefits from foldable or flexible screens while having minimum thickness, such as smart contact lenses.

 

This implementation will still time take to appear as ready-to-use products. As of now, they aren't able to use it to display movable pictures but it is able to produce different colour changes. Professor Harish Bhaskaran explained,"The cool part about this is that the functional part is very thin. Because of that you could actually have displays that are non-intrusive, because you can keep the electronics far away."

Continue reading 'Scientists patent a new flexible nano-pixel bendable screen technology' (full post)

Samsung Galaxy Note 4 could get a retinal scanner

By: Shane McGlaun | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Jul 14, 2014 10:23 am

One of the most popular devices that Samsung makes is the Galaxy Note smartphone. The Note is known for having a larger screen than most smartphones putting in into phablet territory, skirting the gap between smartphones and tablets. Some rumors about the next Galaxy Note are now making the rounds and those rumors suggest that the Note 4 will have a retinal scanner.

 

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Adding a retinal scanner would take the security of the device a step further, Samsung currently makes wide use of fingerprint scanners on its high-end smartphones. The cool part about having a retinal scanner on the smartphone in the future would be the ability to unlock the device by looking at it.

 

Note 4 users might also be able to make purchases online by simply looking at the device. The iris scanner rumor got started with a tweet from the Samsung Exynos account that read: "Security can be improved using features unique to us.]" An image with that tweet has an eye on the screen hinting at retinal scanning.

Verizon blames Netflix for intentionally slowing down its own traffic

By: Roshan Ashraf Shaikh | More News: Internet & Websites | Posted: Jul 14, 2014 10:04 am

Netflex and Verizon are having a catfight about allegedly capping internet bandwidth that affects the online streaming service. This time, Verizon is pointing its fingers at Netflix, claiming in its blog post that the streaming service is stifling its own subscriber's experience.

 

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Verizon said that its subscriber complained of fetting bad Netflix performance even though he is using the 75Mbps FiOS connection plan. But Verizon defended its internet service by saying that there is no congestion from the company's broadband infrastructure, which offloads all the suspicion on Netflix.

 

Verizon's operations team conducted a study when it received a complaint from its customer when Netflix sent a mail to its Verizon's dastardly deed. Verizon explained that congestion happens when it reaches 100% capacity which usually happens during peak usage periods. However, when they compared with other services which uses non-Netflix traffic, there was no congestion at all.

Continue reading 'Verizon blames Netflix for intentionally slowing down its own traffic' (full post)

Samsung rumored to launch Galaxy Alpha soon, its premium smartphone

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Jul 14, 2014 9:34 am

We've been hearing whispers of a premium handset from Samsung for a while, something that would be a notch up from the company's Galaxy S5 smartphone. This premium handset has been known as the Galaxy F, until now.

 

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Now we have South Korea's ETNews reporting that Samsung will launch this new smartphone under the new name of Galaxy Alpha, a name that is new to us, but it might launch as something else, too. We don't know what will be inside of the Galaxy Alpha, but we should expect some improved specs that will help Samsung battle Apple when it releases its iPhone 6 later this year.

 

If Samsung do announce or launch a new smartphone next month, it'll break the company's usual launch cycle. We usually see Samsung announce a new Galaxy S device in the first half of the year, which is followed by a new Galaxy Note in the second half of the year. Right now we have no idea what Samsung is going to do, but we can't complain about having this many options now, can we?

Apple denies its iPhone poses a threat to Chinese national security

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: Jul 14, 2014 8:08 am

Shortly after reports surfaced accusing Apple iPhones of posing a threat to Chinese national security, the U.S. company rebutted charges lobbied by state media. The iPhone location-tracking function is unable to identify the phone owner's activities, and instead is utilized to help speed up applications based on phone owner location.

 

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"Apple has never worked with any government agency from any country to create a backdoor in any of our products or services," an Apple statement claims. "We have also never allowed access to our servers. Apple does not track users' locations - Apple has never done so and has no plans to ever do so."

 

China has notoriously made it difficult for western companies to do business in the surging market - pressuring companies into changing features, adhering to sometimes questionable guidelines, and doing little to prevent intellectual property theft. However, companies are determined to cater to Chinese users, with a large number of first-time smartphone owners.

Cyberdyne HAL suit helping people walk again is helping change lives

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Science, Space & Robotics | Posted: Jul 14, 2014 7:15 am

Cyberdyne CEO Yoshiyuki Sankai is living by his vision of developing technology that helps people, as the Cyberdyne HAL robotic suit is helping the elderly and those otherwise disabled walk again. Promoted as the "world's first cyborg-type robot," the HAL platform help gives the wearer better physical functions.

 

 

HAL is able to detect and interpret bioelectric signals, and can assist with walking, sitting up, standing up, and safely moving around. There is hope that using HAL overtime can assist paralyzed patients, recreating the loop for cerebral nerve systems and the body's muscles.

 

The United States and Japan lead the current robotics market, with Japanese engineers greatly interested in creating solutions that can help the country's aging population. Cyberdyne rents HAL suits to hospitals and living car facilities in Japan, teaching medical professionals and wearers how to make the best from wearing it.

Continue reading 'Cyberdyne HAL suit helping people walk again is helping change lives' (full post)

Apple might be forced to delay the 5.5-inch iPhone 6 into 2015

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Jul 14, 2014 6:16 am

It looks like the bigger next-gen iPhone might not arrive this year, with Apple reportedly delaying the launch of its 5.5-inch iPhone 6 until 2015 as the company is having production issues. These issues aren't just exclusive to the larger iPhone 6, but the 4.7-inch version, too.

 

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According to a KGI Securities analyst, Ming-Chi Kuo (who is usually pretty spot on with Apple-related rumors): "Production bottlenecks on 4.7-inch iPhone 6 center on the yield rate of in-cell touch panel and metal casing. As in-cell touch panel becomes larger in size, the edge of the panel may become insensitive to touch. Meanwhile, under new manufacturing process for the iPhone 6 metal casing, color unevenness is an issue".

 

Kuo says that these problems are amplified with the 5.5-inch iPhone 5, with concerns centered on the new sapphire displays for the bigger iPhone. Kuo thinks that the larger 5.5-inch iPhone 6 might not launch this year, or if it does it'll be in extremely limited supply. If the 5.5-inch version is delayed until 2015, Kuo believes that Apple will cut the prices of the iPhone 5S and 5C when it launches the 4.7-inch iPhone 6 to keep customers happy.

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