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TweakTown News Posts - Page 41

QuakeCon 2015 dated, will take place between July 23-26, 2015

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: Sep 26, 2014 5:35 am

Can you believe that next year marks the 20th anniversary of QuakeCon? QuakeCon 2015 has been officially announced, and will take place between July 23-26, 2015 at the Hilton Anatole, in Dallas, Texas.

 

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QuakeCon tickets are free once again, and will be made available at a later date. Bethesda bills the show as "North America's largest BYOC (Bring-Your-Own-Computer) LAN party" but there will also be other games previewed by the company, other activities, panels, tournaments, and more. At QuakeCon earlier this year, Bethesda showed off an exclusive look at the new Doom.

Samsung Gear VR's content will be controlled by Oculus

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Wearable Computing | Posted: Sep 26, 2014 4:24 am

Samsung is soon to launch its Gear VR device, alongside the Galaxy Note 4 smartphone, but what about the software and games that will float onto Samsung's first VR device? That will be controlled by Oculus.

 

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First, you'll need the Galaxy Note 4 smartphone, followed by (of course) the Gear VR headset itself, and finally, in order to get it all working, the software will be coming from Oculus. Oculus' vice president for Mobile told Polygon: "On Gear VR, there will be an Oculus store and that's how you'll get Gear VR applications". This means that there is no way for developers to release games through the Google Play, or other Android stores for Gear VR. Cohen added: "No. You'll need to go through Oculus storefront for mobile VR".

 

While this might sound strange, it gives Oculus the control to keep the quality of the content at a much higher grade. Second, it provides Oculus, and Facebook, with profits from the sales, in the same way Valve takes a cut of profits from each game sold on Steam. Cohen added: "We'll have a lot more details about this later, but it's going to be something that's very developer friendly. Our goal is to be the platform, to provide the tools that developers need, and to bring the users in," he stated. "And that it will be as painless as we can make it".

Continue reading 'Samsung Gear VR's content will be controlled by Oculus' (full post)

Xbox One is bombing in Japan, sales are worse than Xbox 360 launch

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming Consoles | Posted: Sep 26, 2014 3:18 am

Well, it looks like Microsoft isn't having the success it wanted to in Japan with the recent launch of its Xbox One console. In its first four days on sale, there were 25,674 consoles sold.

 

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Comparing this to the number of Xbox 360 consoles sold when it launched in 2005, which sold over 60,000 consoles in just two days. On its second week on sale, there were just 3,015 Xbox One consoles sold in Japan. Comparing this to the homegrown Sony PlayStation 3 and 4, the PS3 sold twice as many, while eight times as many PS4s were sold.

Samsung pulls laptop sales in Europe, including its Chromebooks

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Laptops | Posted: Sep 26, 2014 1:30 am

Samsung has withdrawn from the European laptop market, pulling its Ativ notebooks and Google Chrome-powered Chromebooks. Overall, the PC market has struggled as smartphones, tablets, and phablets take over - and the laptop market has also suffered. Sony spun off its VAIO laptop business to completely separate itself from the declining sector. For Samsung, the company continues to have great success utilizing Google Android on its smartphones and tablets, which is where future focus will remain high.

 

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"We quickly adapt to market needs and demands," Samsung said in a statement. "In Europe, we will be discontinuing sales of laptops including Chromebooks for now. This is specific to the region - and is not necessarily reflective of conditions in other markets. We will continue to thoroughly evaluate market conditions and will make further adjustments to maintain our competitiveness in emerging PC categories."

 

Sony spun off its VAIO laptop business to completely separate itself from the declining sector.

Continue reading 'Samsung pulls laptop sales in Europe, including its Chromebooks' (full post)

Boston University preparing to develop cloud-based smart-city grid

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Science, Space & Robotics | Posted: Sep 26, 2014 12:00 am

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has given the Boston University Rafik B. Hariri Institute for Computing and Computational Science & Engineering funding to help design a cloud-based "smart-city" platform. The so-called Smart-city Cloud-based Open Platform & Ecosystem (SCOPE) could one day help improve social services, transportation, energy, public safety, and other infrastructure for Boston residents.

 

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The state of Massachusetts has a large number of colleges and universities, along with a booming tech sector, which helps spur innovation. If successful, similar programs could be launched in major metropolitan areas throughout the United States, as cities, counties, and states try to operate on mismanaged - and sometimes out of control - budgets that only balloon further.

 

"The SCOPE project highlights the collaborative efforts between the state, industry and academia that help make Massachusetts the leading innovation state," said Governor Deval Patrick. "Through our Massachusetts Big Data Initiative, we've made open government a priority, opening data sets across multiple state agencies, improving access by researchers and the public."

Microsoft France President confirms Windows 9 unveiling next week

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Operating Systems | Posted: Sep 25, 2014 10:30 pm

Microsoft is expected to announce Windows 9 during a September 30 press event, which was unexpectedly confirmed by Microsoft France President Alain Crozier during a recent speech to employees. A "Windows Technical Preview" should become available shortly after the event, with numerous leaked images and details about the not-so-secret OS already available.

 

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During the recent chat with employees, Crozier used the phrase "Windows 9" instead of the code word "Threshold" when discussing the upcoming OS.

 

Microsoft has an accelerated operating system roadmap, especially as users were unimpressed with Windows 8/8.1 - an operating system that was supposed to highlight touch capability - but instead left many users frustrated.

After years of problems, F-22 Raptor finally flying combat missions

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Science, Space & Robotics | Posted: Sep 25, 2014 8:30 pm

As the United States continues another complicated military and political battle in the Middle East, the problem-plagued F-22 Raptor is seeing its first tour of combat. The radar-evading F-22 Raptor didn't conduct attack missions in Iraq or Afghanistan, but is now being used to conduct airstrikes against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) in Syria.

 

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The Lockheed Martin-developed aircraft is a single-seat fighter jet able to evade radar - but at a $190 million cost per aircraft, it's rather expensive - with almost 200 fighter jets manufactured. After years of budget problems and delays, including an oxygen-related issue in which pilots reported in-flight oxygen deprivation, the U.S. Air Force looks ahead to using the aircraft for future strikes.

 

"The flight of the F-22s delivered GPS-guided munitions, precision munitions targeting only the right side of the building," said Lt. Gen William Mayville, during a recent presentation how the aircraft is being used to fight ISIS terrorists in Syria. "And you can see that the control - the command and control center where it was located in the building was destroyed."

Continue reading 'After years of problems, F-22 Raptor finally flying combat missions' (full post)

Miss a car payment? Technology prevents drivers from moving vehicles

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Technology in Vehicles | Posted: Sep 25, 2014 6:40 pm

Much of the attention related to car technology is focused on in-car features to woo potential buyers - but not the technology that could prevent a vehicle from starting. A harsh lesson for those people late on car payments, as lenders are using technology to prevent vehicles from moving until payments are made.

 

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Subprime auto loans have increased over the past five years - 25 percent of car loans in 2013 were made to people with credit scores at or below 640 - so vehicle lease holders want to try to protect themselves if payments aren't made. The starter interrupt device provides lenders the ability to remotely disable locks, along with track vehicles via GPS.

 

However, customers have complained that their vehicles have been shut down for payments just a few days late - or randomly shut down while waiting in traffic - further igniting a car technology debate.

DirecTV shareholders support AT&T acquisition, as feds consider deal

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Sep 25, 2014 4:55 pm

Satellite provider DirecTV shareholders have reportedly agreed to an acquisition by AT&T, as 99 percent of votes from 77 percent of shareholders support the deal. The $49 billion mega deal will give AT&T an avenue to better compete against Verizon in paid television, with the deal expected to close sometime in Q1 or Q2 of 2015.

 

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"We appreciate DirecTV shareholders' approval and look forward to continuing our work with the various regulatory agencies reviewing the deal to gain their approval as well," an AT&T spokesperson recently noted.

 

AT&T already utilizes its own Uverse TV service, but DirecTV has a larger reach nationwide due to regional restrictions.

Polaroid going after GoPro with its $99 Cube HD-action video camera

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Cameras | Posted: Sep 25, 2014 2:31 pm

Old-school camera company Polaroid has fought for relevance over the years, and has invested in research and development of modern technologies. The company hopes its Cube, a 1080p action sports video recording device with a $99 price tag available next month, will help spur interest in its porftfolio.

 

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"GoPro has done an incredible job building a new category in the digital imaging space," said Scott Hardy, Polaroid CEO, in a statement. "But when we look at that market, we think it can be much bigger by not just targeting the professional and amateur and aspirational thrill-seekers but going after more of the lifestyle."

 

For action sports participants, having something like a Polaroid Cube instead of a GoPro might not be the worst idea - and could help force GoPro to continue to innovate. The low price, half the price of the entry-level Hero3 device currently priced at $199.99 MSRP, should prove to be helpful.

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