Lyft is a car-hiring app that lets normal people play cabbie to earn extra money. Lyft has been available in cities around the country for a while and it is set to expand into New York City this Friday. The catch for Lyft and the drivers that plan to drive for the service is that Lyft is not legal in New York.
There are over 500 people signed up to drive for Lyft when it launches in Brooklyn and Queens this week. The issue for these drivers and Lyft with the launch is that it is not certified by the Taxi and Limousine Commission. Drivers for Lyft risk having cars seized and high fines for working illegally.
In NYC, anyone offering rides for money without a TLC license is subject to $600 penalty and $185 in tow fees. Lyft thinks that these laws don't apply to ride sharing apps. "We don't believe any city law has the jurisdiction to do anything to these drivers," said Lyft cofounder John Zimmer. After a ride is over, Lyft will offer a suggested donation rate for the ride, said to be about 30% cheaper than a normal taxi.
Apple has lost a patent infringement case in China this week after Chinese courts upheld a patent owned by a Chinese firm. The court upholding the Chinese patent means that a legal case against Apple can now proceed. Apple took Chinese firm Zhizhen Internet Technology and the Chinese State Intellectual Property Office to court in an attempt to get a ruling that a patent on speech recognition tech being used by Zhizhen was invalid.
The Beijing first Intermediate Court ruled in Zhizhen's favor according to a state run newspaper. Apple says that it intends to appeal the case and take it to the Beijing Higher People's Court. Zhizhen filed suit against Apple in 2012 claiming that Siri violated its voice system patents.
"Unfortunately, we were not aware of Zhizhen's patent before we introduced Siri (speech recognition technology) and we do not believe we are using this patent," said a Beijing-based Apple spokeswoman in an emailed statement to Reuters.
"While a separate court considers this question, we remain open to reasonable discussions with Zhizhen," the spokeswoman said.
The automotive industry in the US and other parts of the world has been besieged with recalls over the last year. GM has been hit with the brunt of the recalls going so far as to tell dealers in the US that they can no longer sell the Cruze, the company's second bestselling vehicle. Ford has now issued a massive recall in North America that includes 100,610 vehicles.
The massive recall includes six different actions with about 92,000 of the vehicles having a potential issue with the front axles that may not have been installed properly. That improper installation could cause the axle to move outward and eventually disengage.
Cars covered in that axle recall include 2013-2014 Taurus, Flex, and Interceptor models along with Lincoln MKS and MKT. Also included in the axle recall are 2012-2014 Edge and 2014 Lincoln MKX models. Ford also recalled 5264 2011-2014 F59 Commercial Stripped Chassis vehicles with faulty electrical systems that could lead to a fire. 2014 Ford Escape vehicles with the panorama roof were recalled due to glass panels not glued properly during installation.
If new reports are to be believed, VIA is working on the next-generation version of its x86-based CPU architecture, Isaiah. The company's last try at the x86 CPU game was back in 2006, but the latest version looks like it'll be released in just a few weeks time.
German site 3DCenter is reporting on some of the performance comparisons with other low-power chips, such as AMD's Kabini APU which has a 25W TDP, and a mobile Bay Trail processor from Intel. Isaiah II looks like it can keep its own, but we don't know how genuine these benchmarks are, if they are genuine at all. Centaur is the name of VIA's CPU division, with its website teasing an upcoming refresh which will happen on September 1. This could be the date when we learn about the new CPU, so we'll be keeping our eyes open.
We can also confirm hearing stories from certain VIA employees at Computex that its next-gen CPU may end up being able to compete with Intel Core i5 level parts at low power consuming levels.
Bethesda has announced it will host a The Evil Within-based blood drive at QuakeCon 2014 next week for the American Red Cross. Donors will receive The Evil Within swag.
Included in your bag after donating your life force will be an official The Evil Within-branded chill pack, which is a cold pack that can be put in the freezer to cool down lunch boxes and coolers. Better yet, this special QuakeCon pack will look like a blood pack, featuring red freezable liquid inside, according to Bethesda's Vice President of PR and Marketing, Pete Hines.
Hines said: "QuakeCon has a great group of attendees who we think will want to help the community by donating blood. The American Red Cross is a terrific organization, and we're thrilled to welcome them to QuakeCon". American Red Cross' External Communications Manager, Jan Hale, added: "The Red Cross is grateful for Bethesda Softworks' invitation to host a blood drive during such a critical time. The summer months are a particularly difficult period for blood collections and being a part of this event gives us more opportunities to help save lives".
After a 37-year journey through our solar system, NASA's Voyager I has been hit by a third solar 'tsunami'. These solar tsunamis are coming from our sun, in the form of coronal mass ejections - in other words, shock waves from massive, violent eruptions on our sun.
Since 2012, there have been three of these CMEs, with the third one erupting on Monday. These eruptions have been helping NASA confirm something it proposed late last year: that Voyager is the first craft from Earth to travel into interstellar space. But what is interstellar space? Well, it's an area that is just beyond what is known as our heliosphere.
The heliosphere is an area where solar wind pushes back the dense plasma of space, in something that resembles a protective bubble. This plasma is the result of the death of stars millions of years ago. What should really make your scratch your noggin' is that the plasma found outside of the heliosphere, and in interstellar space, is 40 times denser than the plasma inside of the heliosphere.
Cliff "CliffyB" Bleszinski has been teasing a new game for a while now, but today we finally hear the codename for it: Project Blue Streak. CliffyB describes Project Blue Streak as a free-to-play sci-fi arena shooter for the PC.
Boss Key Productions, CliffyB's new studio, is behind the game. Boss Key will be working with Tokyo-based Nexon, who is known for making a bunch of free-to-play online games. CliffyB didn't say much about the new game, but it looks like he's enjoying the fact that he no longer has the big budget companies behind him pushing massive hype trains.
After announcing Project Blue Streak, within three minutes Bleszinski tweeted "And no, there won't be a fake CG trailer showing "Gameplay" because that's not how @bosskey does it". It's great to hear this being said from Bleszinski, as he has come out of retirement to make video games again.
Converse is set to launch two new Super Mario Bros. themed sneakers late next month in Japan. The first pair will feature Bowser on them, while the second will have the hero himself, Mario.
In 2012, the company released a black-and-white series, but this new duo of sneakers sport a new design. The new Super Mario Bros. themed Converse sneakers will set you back some $200, so they are there for the bigger Mario fans in the world.
Gearbox Software and 2K have just unveiled Battleborn, a first-person MOBA title that will reach next-gen consoles and the PC. The first trailer to Batlteborn can be viewed below:
Battleborn is Gearbox's new IP, which is in development for the PS4, Xbox One and PC. The development team behind Battleborn calls it a hero-shooter, as it combines the world's of a fast-paced first-person shooter with cooperative combat, with an "expansive collection of diverse heroes to create an experience unlike anything you've played before".
Players have the option of fighting alongside their friends in the narrative-driven story campaign, or they can jump online for competitive multiplayer matches. There's no ETA on Battleborn just yet, but I'm sure we'll be hearing much more about it in the coming months.
Now that we've passed into the second half of 2014, we should expect some new GPUs in the coming months. But what is more exciting, is what is coming in the first half of 2015 according to a new report from SemiAccurate.
We should expect NVIDIA to skip the 20nm process completely, moving directly from 28nm into 16nm. This is just a rumor right now, but if it ends up happening, 2015 is going to be one of the most exciting years for GPUs in a very long time. This would see NVIDIA release the GeForce GTX 990 under the Maxwell architecture, from the GM204B core.
If NVIDIA does skip the 20nm process, we should see some seriously fast GPUs appearing, with much lower than expected power consumption. The core count should also be lower when compared to the GeForce GTX 700 series, as Maxwell is a much more efficient architecture compared to Kepler. So before we have the GTX 800 series, we're already foaming at the mouth about the GTX 900 series. It won't stop there, as we should see NVIDIA unveil the GeForce 1000 series sometime in the next 18-24 months, too.