For those of you waiting for NVIDIA to release its next-gen Shield device, it looks like it might be going through a transformation before we see it. The current Shield is a tablet in a game controller design, which works incredibly well, but the next version might be an entirely new beast.
According to a filing with the Global Certification Forum for the new Shield's wireless connectivity, and a related tweet on Monday, the new Shield is called a "Notebook/Tablet". This means that NVIDIA could either be straying from its current design, or might toward a detachable, separate tablet that docks into a controller - something I would love to see.
More than 40 bidders were unable to keep Tim Draper, a Silicon Valley entrepreneur, from purchasing the entire lot of 30,000 bitcoins auctioned by the US government. Instead of just flooding the market with the bitcoins, Draper has teamed up with bitcoin exchange company Vaurum, and wants to expand cryptocurrency use worldwide.
"With the help of Vaurum and this newly purchased bitcoin, we expect to be able to create new services that can provide liquidity and confidence to markets that have been hamstrung by weak currencies," Draper said in a statement. "We want to enable people to hold and trade bitcoin to secure themselves against weakening currencies."
The seized bitcoins were valued near $19 million, and Draper won every single lot - but won't say how much he spent to dominate the auction.
Oculus VR promised that it would begin shipping its Rift Developer Kit 2 units in July, something that it has started to do. The Facebook-owned VR startup has said that "The first batch of official DK2s have left the manufacturing facility and are making their way to our distribution centers now".
This news comes from "cyberality" on Reddit. Oculus VR says that it should see half the units through distribution centers and on their way to eager Rift DK2 owners before the month wraps up. As soon as the shipment has been processed by the distribution center, DK2 owners will receive their tracking numbers.
Something more interesting, is the amount of DK2 units that Oculus VR had pre-orders on. There were over 45,000 DK2 pre-orders, which is a massive number. With this many pre-orders, manufacturing can't quite keep up, so some people wont' get their DK2 units until August. Oculus VR has told its team in China to ramp up production at its factory, something nit will continue to do until every DK2 has their headset. I've pre-ordered one myself, and was one of the first, so you can expect an unboxing video and articles written up on it as soon as it hits my doorstep.
Lindsay Lohan is known for a life of controversy, but her latest notch in the belt that is becoming her life is that the actress is suing Rockstar Games over a character in Grand Theft Auto V that she claims looks like her.
Lohan says that the developer created, and used the character without her permission, so now she's suing. Lohan's lawsuit claims that the GTA V character Lacey Jonas is based on her, including her likeness and personal details. The actress filed the lawsuit in Manhattan, which is where Rockstar Games' corporate HQ is located.
I'm sure we'll hear much more on this as the months go by.
At least one in five websites are blocked in the United Kingdom, with a growing number of legitimate websites getting caught up in the censorship, according to the Open Rights Group.
The Open Rights Grouped tried to access 100,000 websites with default filter settings - or "normal" filtering with nothing set as a default - and there were almost 20,000 different websites blocked. It's a frustrating system that leaves some websites, such as Sherights.com, a blog focusing on violence against women and LGBT rights, blocked and inaccessible.
"We've been surprised to find the default filtering settings are blocking around a fifth of the Alexa top 100K websites," said Jim Killock, ORG Executive Director, in a statement. "That's a lot more than porn, which accounts for around 4 percent of that list."
Following former NSA contractor Edward Snowden discussing surveillance activities by the NSA and its British counterpart, the GCHQ, a number of ISPs in the United States, United Kingdom, South Korea, Netherlands, Germany and Zimbabwe are targeting the GCHQ. Specifically, they say the spy agency used "malicious software" to compromise their networks while collecting data.
The GCHQ said online searches, which it considers "external communications" when routed overseas, don't require a warrant.
"Snowden's revelations have exposed GCHQ's view that independent operators like GreenNet are legitimate targets for Internet surveillance, so we could be unknowingly used to collect data on our users. We say this is unlawful and utterly unacceptable in a democracy," said Cedric Knight, from Dutch-based ISP, GreenNet.
Solar-powered "smart benches" able to recharge your smartphones are being rolled out in Boston by Changing Environments. The benches, called Soofas, include a built-in solar panel and two USB ports, and includes Wi-Fi. The chair was introduced during the White House Maker Faire last week, and could quickly find homes throughout major metropolitan areas.
Each bench, which can charge two phones at a time, cost $3,000 and is being described as the first step into "Smart Urban Furniture."
"Your cellphone doesn't just make phone calls, why should our benches just be seats?" said Boston Mayor Martin Walsh. "We are fortunate to have talented entrepreneurs and makers in Boston thinking creatively about sustainability and the next generation of amenities for our residents."
A new router has appeared on Kickstarter that only allows for internet access once a certain amount of chores have been completed.
The Kudoso router is aimed primarily at parents trying to regulate their kids' internet access - but it could equally be useful for procrastinating adults too. Kudoso sets a series of tasks that must be finished in order to unlock minutes that can be used online.
"Parents today are faced with a dilemma about how to manage the amount of time their kids spend on the internet and the content they are exposed to," developer Rob Irizarry writes on the Kickstarter page. "Kudoso lets your children earn points that allow them to access the internet sites you approve for blocks of time that you define." Admins decide how much access to each individual website costs, while access to social networks and services like Netflix are also available. At the moment, the Kickstarter has 77 backers and $7,541 of a $50,000, with 23 days to go.
Samsung will be shutting down the last of its plasma panel screen production by the end of this year.
Although plasma TV sets have been in decline for some time, this will be a serious nail in the coffin for the technology along with Panasonic's exit late last year. According to a statement, Samsung SDI will instead invest cash and resources in the energy and materials sectors, and an overall decline in demand for the sets has been cited as the main contributing factor. The news comes amid rumors that LG, another of the three major players in plasma, is also seeking to exit the business.
"We plan to continue our PDP TV business until the end of this year, due to changes in market demands," a Samsung spokesperson told CNET. "We remain committed to providing consumers with products that meet their needs, and will increase our focus on growth opportunities in UHD TV's and Curved TV's."
Former NSA contractor Edward Snowden has greatly changed data security after disclosing major surveillance programs targeting U.S. citizens and foreign citizens. This has caused such a shakeup that physical location of data will become irrelevant moving forward, with organizations using a combination of different strategies to stay more secure, according to research firm Gartner.
Gartner lists the following types of data location: physical location, legal location, political location, and logical location. Companies trying to keep data secure will have to find ways to keep data offshore while ensuring encryption keys and other tools are located elsewhere, for example - critically important with cloud computing becoming more important.
"Business leaders must make the decision and accept the residual risk, balancing different types of risk: ongoing legal uncertainty, fines or public outrage, employee dissatisfaction or losing market share due to a lack of innovation, or overspending on redundant or outdated it," according to Gartner.