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Facebook kills iOS app bug, reduced crash rate significantly

By: Shane McGlaun | More News: Apps | Posted: Aug 13, 2014 4:04 pm

I would bet that all iOS fans that use the Facebook app has had the app randomly crash on them. Facebook has known about a bug in the iOS version of its app for a long time, but the bug proved difficult to squash. The bug was in the Apple Core Data system and finally engineers have fixed the issue.

 

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With the bug addressed, they say that the iOS version of the Facebook app has reduced its crash rate by more than 50%. The team needed months to create the correct approach for the crash issue and it involved multiple steps.

 

After coming to the correct path to fix the error, the engineering team worked with the networking team and had the issue repaired in a few hours. Facebook engineers Slobodan Predolac and Nicholas Spiegelberg said, "Dealing with a large, rapidly evolving codebase can seem overwhelming at times. Everyday tasks like analyzing crashes and understanding code can turn into their own programming challenges. At these moments, it's important to work together, brainstorm, and rely on computer programming fundamentals."

FMS 2014 - Cachebox explains application-centric CacheAdvance caching

By: Paul Alcorn | More News: IT/Datacenter | Posted: Aug 13, 2014 3:37 pm

Flash Memory Summit 2014 - The list of software caching solutions is expanding rapidly as manufacturers, and software vendors, try to make their way into this expansive market. Deploying flash is great, but deploying it in a manner that accelerates existing infrastructure is even better. Very few will totally replace spinning disk in their datacenter deployments, so marrying the capacity of HDD with the performance of SSDs is the current go-to solution.

 

Cachebox wades into this large market with a new method of caching. The CacheAdvance software uses an ASM (Application Specific Module) that analyzes what is important to the application and provides seamless acceleration based upon application-centric performance profiles. The system has predefined knowledge of existing popular programs, but also adjusts to the specific environment.

 

 

 

One of the advantages of application-centric caching is that it doesn't accelerate any unwanted processes or applications, such as backup operations. This maximizes the capacity of the underlying flash solution. Users can use any block-level device for caching, so there is hardware independence from specific vendors and the system is also interface agnostic. PCIe, SAS, SATA, NVDIMMS, and UltraDIMMS can all play equally. Any block-level device is fair game. One particularly exciting aspect of the flexible design is that it will also allow for future storage technologies as well.

 

Another strength is that CacheAdvance is totally transparent to the application, minimizing disruption in the existing environment. The system is flash-friendly and uses techniques, such as taking random data and writing it sequentially to flash, to minimize flash wear and increase longevity.

Continue reading 'FMS 2014 - Cachebox explains application-centric CacheAdvance caching' (full post)

Amazon Local Register mobile card reader and app combo launches

By: Shane McGlaun | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Aug 13, 2014 3:00 pm

Amazon has launched its own card reader and accompanying app to allow small businesses to get paid. The Amazon card reader is called Amazon Local Register and it is aiming directly at Square and PayPal. One of the big features of the Amazon offering is that it has lower costs than Square and PayPal.

 

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Amazon offers a flat charge of 1.75% per payment until the beginning of 2016, which is 1% lower than the fees required by both of the competing providers. On January 1 2016, the fees will increase to 2.5%, which is still lower than both competitors current pricing.

 

The card reader and apps are available for Fire OS, Android, and iOS devices. No monthly fees are charged and the card reader hardware will cost $10. Buyers of the card reader will get a $10 credit in processing fees making the reader free.

Continue reading 'Amazon Local Register mobile card reader and app combo launches' (full post)

Final European resupply spacecraft reaches the ISS

By: Shane McGlaun | More News: Science, Space & Robotics | Posted: Aug 13, 2014 2:09 pm

Getting supplies and other gear up to the ISS in orbit around the Earth is no longer the concern of Europe. The final European resupply vehicle reached the ISS Tuesday making the fifth trip for the ATV-5 resupply vehicle. ATV-5 stands for Automated Transfer Vehicle 5.

 

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ATV-5 lifted off and entered orbit two weeks ago with over seven tons of cargo aboard to take to the space station. When the spacecraft neared the ISS, the robotic arm on the station grabbed the large 32-foot tall craft and inched it closer and closer to the docking port.

 

With this being the fifth and final resupply mission from the European Space Agency, resupplying the ISS will now be the domain of two US firms, including SpaceX, Russia, and Japan, which all have cargo vessels. The ATV-5 vehicle was the largest of the cargo ships taking supplies to the space station and the 7.2-ton final load was a record.

Satellite launching tomorrow will take images down to 30cm in size

By: Shane McGlaun | More News: Science, Space & Robotics | Posted: Aug 13, 2014 1:00 pm

A company in the US will be launching a new satellite this week that will be able to take some of the most detailed satellite images of the Earth civilians have ever been able to access. The company launching the satellite is called DigitalGlobe and the satellite is known as WorldView-3.

 

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Once in orbit, the satellite will be able to take images of objects as small as 30cm in size. Launch will be from the Vandenberg Air Force Base in California and once the satellite is in orbit, it will begin taking images of 680,000km of the Earth each day.

 

The company has a permit from the government to sell images to customers at up to 0.25m panchromatic and 1.0m multispectral ground sample distance. Images will begin being taken and sold six months after the satellite is in orbit and operational.

Lenovo unveils its redesigned, new-look ThinkStation P Series

By: William Harmon | More News: Computer Systems | Posted: Aug 13, 2014 12:39 pm

Lenovo has just taken the wraps off of its new ThinkStation P Series, P500, P700 and P900 workstations at SIGGRAPH 2014. Completely redesigned and rebuilt from the ground up to offer more flexibility and ease of use with a new look. Features include enhanced thermal management, tool-less upgrades and Lenovo's new FLEX module technology.

 

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"After a period of intensive research, development and testing, we're excited to introduce our next generation workstations to the market, as we truly believe this is the best designed workstation ever," said Victor Rios, Vice President and General Manager, Workstation, Lenovo. "We built on the advancements delivered in our 30 Series workstations and engineered the P Series with new levels of innovation based on extensive customer feedback. The result for users is optimum performance, outstanding reliability and unparalleled usability that is unlike anything they have experienced."

 

Rios continued: "Performance Boosting productivity starts with incomparable computing and graphics performance. With the Lenovo ThinkStation P Series, users can run their mission-critical applications to their limits - from advanced rendering and simulation to analysis of vast data sets." The following can be found in the new ThinkStation P Series of workstations:

 

  • Cutting-Edge Processing: The latest Intel® Xeon® processors provide critical computing horsepower.
  • Unparalleled Graphical Capabilities: The latest NVIDIA® Quadro® video cards provide unmatched visualization performance.
  • Memory: The P Series supports a high capacity of DDR4 memory to handle any complex computational task with RAM to spare.
  • Pushing the Limits of Expandability: The ThinkStation P900 supports up to three NVIDIA® Quadro® K6000 video cards and up to 14 storage devices.

Continue reading 'Lenovo unveils its redesigned, new-look ThinkStation P Series' (full post)

iPhone trick claims to let you skip Facebook Messenger and still chat

By: Shane McGlaun | More News: Apps | Posted: Aug 13, 2014 12:05 pm

Facebook users have been upset a bit of late with the social network trying to remove chat services from its normal app and get users to download a second app to chat called Facebook Messenger. Some have been upset over privacy concerns with Messenger and don't want to use it. If you are one of these people, you can use a trick that has surfaced that claims to allow you to skip Facebook Messenger and still chat.

 

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The trick seems rather simple. Reports indicate that all the iPhone user has to do is hit the install Messenger button when the normal Facebook app prompts them. While the Messenger app is being installed, switch to the App Store and stop the installation or delete the app.

 

Once you reopen the normal Facebook app, you should still have your chat capability and no more annoying prompts. This could all change if Facebook finds this trick and updates the app to look harder for Messenger. Let us know if this works for you.

Mad Catz S.T.R.I.K.E. TE mechanical gaming keyboard debuts

By: Shane McGlaun | More News: Gaming | Posted: Aug 13, 2014 11:00 am

Mad Catz has been making some very cool gaming peripherals for a long time now and it is back with a new gaming keyboard that is available for pre-order. The new keyboard is called the S.T.R.I.K.E. TE mechanical gaming keyboard and as the name suggests, the keys use mechanical switches. Mechanical key switches are something that many gamers and touch typists require for tactile feel and feedback.

 

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The keyboard has 130 Kailh Brown mechanical switches and a metal frame for durability. The keys can survive 50 million keystrokes. Mad Catz uses anti-ghosting technology with 30-key rollover, and the keys are optimized to 45g of actuation force.

 

Other features of the keyboard include 12 programmable macro buttons and easy macro planning. The keyboard is backlit and the user has the ability to individually brighten specific areas of the keyboard. Pre-orders are underway now with the keyboard selling for $127.99.

Mad Catz M.M.O. TE gaming mouse hits pre-order

By: Shane McGlaun | More News: Gaming | Posted: Aug 13, 2014 10:29 am

Mad Catz has announced that its latest gaming mouse is up for pre-order and the mouse is called the Mad Catz Tournament Edition M.M.O. gaming mouse. The mouse has tuning for quick response when gaming and has a sensor with 8200 DPI resolution.

 

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Mad Catz also includes an adjustable lift-off height and thumb buttons on the side of the mouse to initiate programmed commands while gaming. The 8200 DPI doppler sensor is able to detect the sort of surface that it is being used on and optimize itself for the best performance.

 

Sensitivity of the mouse is adjustable between 100 and 8200 DPI. The mouse has 12 buttons in all that can be programmed using drag and drop software and 60 total user definable profiles. Both Windows and Mac computers are supported and the mouse connects via USB. Pre-orders are underway for $67.99.

Samsung makes its Galaxy Alpha official, features fresh new look

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Aug 13, 2014 10:23 am

After months of teasing, Samsung has just officially unveiled the new Galaxy Alpha smartphone. Samsung's latest handset is an ultra-thin Android-powered smartphone, featuring a 4.7-inch 1280x720 display.

 

 

On the back, we have a 12-megapixel camera, a smallish 1860mAh battery (depending on your region), and either a quad- or octa-core processor (again, depending on your region). The design of the Galaxy Alpha is what this is all about, with a new-look design, ditching the plastic we're all used to on Galaxy smartphones.

 

Samsung calls the Galaxy Alpha "the evolution of Galaxy Design," and that it shows off a "new design approach" for the South Korean-based giant. The shape of the Galaxy Alpha isn't much of a departure from the Galaxy S5, but we are seeing some more finness to the Galaxy Alpha. The company hasn't unveiled pricing or availability for the Galaxy Alpha, but it will launch in black, white, gold and blue colors.

Continue reading 'Samsung makes its Galaxy Alpha official, features fresh new look' (full post)

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