If you're not busy playing this Super Smash Brothers mod on your graphics calculator, prepare yourself for the 2015 year of schooling by modding your ever useful device into a selfie-capturing camera.
Thanks to Christoper Mitchell, high school girls can take more selfies than ever before due to his latest project named ArTICam. Through the utilization of a Game Boy Camera and a programmable Arduino board, Mitchell has released plans to enable you to take a 128 x 123 pixel selfie grayscale image.
Sony Pictures Entertainment has tasked cybersecurity firm Mandiant with helping it clean up after a vicious cyberattack that knocked its computer networks offline last week. The "Guardians of Peace" claimed responsibility for the attack, saying they stole terabytes of data from SPE, with SPE's IT team unable to defend against the attack.
The SPE email system is expected to be restored by end of business tomorrow, while Sony executives remain relatively quiet about the incident.
It is a lucrative time to be in cybersecurity, as companies are turning to private sector companies for additional consultations - as cyberattacks are on the rise, with criminals able to steal internal data, disrupt daily work activities, and compromise customers.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) wants drone operators to use better common sense and make sure they don't fly drones near airport airspace. There have been more reported incidents between drones and aircraft, with 25 near collisions since February, according to the FAA.
"The thing that I am most concerned about is doing everything we can to avoid conflicts between aircraft - whether they're drones or commercial airliners," said FAA Administrator Michael Huerta. "If you're using an unmanned aircraft, you need to stay away from an airport, you need to stay below 400 feet and you need to maintain line of sight."
However, as the number of drone operators is expected to increase in 2015, these type of incidents only seem more likely to occur. The FAA plans to release official rules for drones that weigh less than 55 pounds sometime in December.
There are more Google Android mobile users running around the United States, but Apple iOS users enjoyed shopping and spending more on Black Friday. One-fifth of all sales on Thanksgiving Day and one-fourth of all sales on Black Friday were accounted to iOS - and Android snagged 5.6 percent on Thanksgiving Day and 6.9 percent on Black Friday, according to IBM's Digital Analytics Benchmark.
Specifically, iOS users spent an average of $121.86 per order while Android shoppers spent $98.07 per order - and iOS traffic was 34.2 percent of total online traffic during Black Friday.
Apple might only have 12 percent of the global smartphone market captured, but its users are fanatical about their devices.
While Samsung might be taming down its smartphone offerings, there are still a few handsets in the pipeline that we'll be introduced to very soon, one of which is the Galaxy A7.
A recent filing over at the FCC is now hinting at the Galaxy A7, which should feature an all-metal unibody frame. We should also expect quad-band connectivity with Band 5 LTE, dual-band Wi-Fi, A-GPS, and NFC. Inside of the Galaxy A7, we should see the Snapdragon 615 processor, which is an 8-core 64-bit chip, Adreno 405 graphics, 2GB of RAM, and 16GB of NAND flash.
The Galaxy A7 should sport a 5.2-inch FUll HD display, 12-megapixel rear-facing camera and a 5-megapixel selfie snapper. When should we expect Samsung to take the wraps off of this smartphone? We could guess and say CES 2015 in January, but it might be pushed off for a few months yet.
AMD is hoping for some serious improvements in the energy efficiency of its APUs by 2020, where the chipmaker is aiming for a massive 25x improvement. In order to reach this goal, AMD will have to outpace historical energy efficiency by over 70%, but the company is optimistic that it can do this.
The company has goals in terms of energy efficiency, where it wants to have "more performance with less power", as well as "long battery life, sleek light weight form factors, cool and quiet computation" mixed with "lower energy consumption and utility bills, lower Total Cost of Ownership" and a "reduced environmental impact".
Using a comparison of a 35W notebook processor released this year, versus a 35W processor from two years ago, the new notebook processor is twice as fast. You can say that the energy efficiency has improved by 200% as well, but the older 35W processors no longer fit into notebooks. AMD needs to find a way to reduce power consumption, as well as increasing the performance of the processor. Up until now, we've seen Intel and AMD do one or the other, but not both to the extent of 200% leaps each time.
TZOA is a new project on Kickstarter, that is hoping to raise $110,000 to fund its wearable enviro-tracker. TZOA "measures your personal air pollution and UV exposure in real-time using advanced sensor technology", according to its Kickstarter page.
It will arrive as a small round tracker that has sensors on it that keep an eye on air quality, UV light, humidity, and temperature. All of this data is fed to a companion smartphone app to quantify the environment around you. From within the app, you can find out the quality of the local air, and upload this data to a crowdsourced pollution map of your town. That last bit, is a very nice trick.
The team is still in the early stages of building TZOA, with a projection production run starting in summer 2015. A $135 pledge on their Kickstarter page will secure you one of the first TZOA sensors off the production run.
Rocksteady Studios is back in the driving seat of the Batman series, with Batman: Arkham Knight being revealed during their recent AMA (Ask Me Anything) on Reddit (with some spoilers for Batman: Arkham City, so if you haven't played that, turn your eyes off).
The studio revealed that Arkham Knight will continue right after the Joker's death, with the studio adding that the Joker's death is the point we jump off, asking "what happens when Joker is removed from Gotham" and then looking at the fallout from this event. Batman's suit also mirrors the Batmobile in many ways, with Rocksteady adding that the new suit "impacts gameplay as well, as it enhances some of Batman's abilities, particularly in the way the Batman and the car work together".
When it comes to the Batmobile, this is the biggest addition to the Arkham Knight, with Rocksteady teasing that there will be some missions that require the Batmobile in order to complete them. Rocksteady said: "When we added the Batmobile to the game, we wanted to make sure it's a fun, meaningful addition to every part of the game. Batman wouldn't use it if he didn't need it. So there will be points in the main story where you will need to use the Batmobile to progress, and if you're anything like me, there will be points where you can't use the Batmobile and wish it was there!".
Xiaomi has taken the global smartphone market by storm, and is now the No. 3 smartphone manufacturer in the world - but has previously said it doesn't want to just rush into markets and struggle. Instead, the company will continue its expansion outside of China and focus on India, Brazil, Mexico, and a select handful of other markets, while continuing to learn and evolve.
"We don't think that the US market is in our near-term plans," said Hugo Barra, Xiaomi VP for international operations. "Brazil and Mexico are far more interesting markets."
It would seem like only a matter of time before Xiaomi makes an entrance to the US market, but with most subscribers on a postpaid plan - the US market still is not a priority for the company. Meanwhile, Xiaomi is able to launch products such as the Redmi Note becoming the first 4G smartphone on the Indian market available for less than $160.
Forget China and Russia - Sony Pictures Entertainment is investigating a major cyberattack that could have originated from North Korea. The attack crippled SPE's email and computer systems since Monday, interrupting employee operations throughout the short holiday week. Several movies being promoted by SPE were also impacted, as Twitter feeds were disrupted by the cyberattack.
The "Guardians of Peace" group claimed responsibility for the attack, and said it has a large amount of internal Sony data that it has taken. GOP is reportedly preparing a "volume of the data" to the Internet in the immediate future.
SPE is the studio behind "The Interview," a geopolitical satire that features James Franco and Seth Rogen as a talk show host and producer turned American operatives tasked with killing Kim Jong Un.