Business, Financial & Legal News - Page 241

All the latest Business, Financial & Legal news as it relates to tech, gaming, and science - Page 241.

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Playing World of Warcraft makes you unfit for office according to Republican politicians

Trace Hagan | Oct 5, 2012 1:11 PM CDT

If it wasn't so crazy, you'd think I was making this up...and I wish I was. But, no, I'm not. The following is a completely true political attack on a Democrat candidate using her playing of the popular game World of Warcraft as the focus. For some reason, the Republican incumbent believes that this makes her unfit for office.

Now, I don't want to start any political debates between Republicans and Democrats. Instead, I would like to take this moment to point out how absolutely ridiculous this claim is. The fact that a candidate plays World of Warcraft almost shows that he/she is more in touch with current life than the opposition.

"I think it's weird that I'm being targeted for playing online games," Lachowicz said. "Apparently I'm in good company since there are 183 million other Americans who also enjoy online games. What's next? Will I be ostracized for playing Angry Birds or Words with Friends? If so, guilty as charged!"

Continue reading: Playing World of Warcraft makes you unfit for office according to Republican politicians (full post)

Google looking to trim more jobs from Motorola as restructuring plan moves along

Trace Hagan | Oct 4, 2012 3:33 PM CDT

Google is sharpening its job axe in anticipation of slicing more jobs out of the Motorola Mobility division. During the second quarter, Motorola reported an operating loss of $233 million. Google slashed 4,000 jobs (roughly 20 percent) of Motorola's workforce in August as a way to trim down costs, and it looks as though they are trimming some more.

"Motorola has continued to refine its planned restructuring actions and now expects to broaden those actions to include additional geographic regions outside of the U.S.," Google said in a statement.

What this should be read as is "we're cutting more jobs." But cutting jobs is only one part of the restructuring plan. After all, cutting jobs costs money as Google's upping of its estimated severance costs proves. Google upped the estimate 9 percent to $300 million, not exactly cost saving in the short term.

Continue reading: Google looking to trim more jobs from Motorola as restructuring plan moves along (full post)

Apple inks deal with Australian-based Microlatch, to work on fingerprint recognition technology

Anthony Garreffa | Oct 4, 2012 5:32 AM CDT

Apple have just signed off on a deal with Australian-based Microlatch, where they'll work on fingerprint recognition technology. Ex-Commonwealth Bank head, and now major Microlatch investor, David Murray, claims that the help Apple are after, is related to mobile payments using near-field communications (NFC) technology.

Microlatch has patented fingerprint technology that is said to meet banking security standards, all without the need for central processing - something Murray calls a "self-registering" system. The iPhone 5 may not have NFC technology, but with this latest deal it looks like Apple are one step closer to an NFC filled future.

We already have Passbook in iOS 6, with this possibly the start of Apple's NFC journey. Apple's iPhone 5S might sport NFC tech, but would they be too late to the game? Or will they do it in a way that really beats their competitors' NFC-based smartphones?

Continue reading: Apple inks deal with Australian-based Microlatch, to work on fingerprint recognition technology (full post)

Cliff "CliffyB" Bleszinski leaves Epic, is taking a "much needed break"

Anthony Garreffa | Oct 3, 2012 11:27 PM CDT

Quite the surprise today, with news that Cliff "CliffyB" Bleszinski has decided to leave game developer, Epic Games. Epic Games are the development team behind huge titles such as the Unreal series, and Gears of War series of games.

Bleszinski has been with Epic for over 20 years, and had influence on some of those most memorable games of our time such as Jazz Jackrabbit, Unreal, Gears of War, and more. Tim Sweeney, Epic's founder, CEO and technical director, had the following to say:

In 20 wonderful years with Epic, Cliff Bleszinski has grown into a true design luminary, and his contributions to the 'Unreal' and 'Gears' series have helped shape the game industry into what it is today. Cliff leaves Epic with our gratitude for his many contributions, and our wishes for continued success in the next chapter of his life!

Continue reading: Cliff "CliffyB" Bleszinski leaves Epic, is taking a "much needed break" (full post)

Lenovo to build PC manufacturing plant in North Carolina

Anthony Garreffa | Oct 2, 2012 10:42 PM CDT

Lenovo, who is a Chinese computer-maker, are set to start manufacturing PCs in the US next year. The company will build a production line in Whitsett, North Carolina, that will allow the the company to be more responsive to US corporate clients' demand for flexible supplies and product customization.

With the production of PCs in the US, the cost will be higher, but it will improve the image of Lenovo in the US. At the moment, they're fourth in market share in regards to shipment numbers. Lenovo's North American President, David Schmook, has said:

Us having a [production] facility here in a home country is a differentiator that people will value. Being green is not necessarily the lowest-cost option for a lot of companies, but you do it because your customers and partners value you being green.

Continue reading: Lenovo to build PC manufacturing plant in North Carolina (full post)

Apple co-founder, Steve Wozniak, talks about Apple's closed philosophy

Anthony Garreffa | Oct 2, 2012 4:29 AM CDT

Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak were two completely different people, and it really shows with Wozniak's latest comments on Apple. Wozniak recently did an Ask me Anything (AmA) on Reddit, where he responded to a question regarding Apple's current practices, and he had some colorful words for the company:

Like all of us who appreciate the quality of Apple products, I have mixed feelings. I grew up with core values of openness and sharing of technology. When I ran dial-a-joke it was illegal to own, use or purchase your own telephone or answering machine. You couldn't connect anything to the phone jack except that which you leased from AT&T. You had little choice and there was no room for outside innovators. We techies all said this was a bad thing. You probably see the parallel.

He continued, where he pointed out that years ago Apple released software on competing platforms such as Windows, where they released iTunes onto Microsoft's popular OS. But, they're not so happy to play well with others now, as we don't see iTunes on Android, he continued:

Continue reading: Apple co-founder, Steve Wozniak, talks about Apple's closed philosophy (full post)

Apple employees getting three extra paid days off for an 'incredibly successful year'

Trace Hagan | Oct 1, 2012 1:11 PM CDT

If you work at Apple, you will be happy to find out that Tim Cook does appreciate you. And to show appreciation for all of your hard work this year, Mr. Cook is offering you three additional paid days off. Most people will be getting these days off the week of Thanksgiving, though retail and some others will have to take them at another time.

In addition to giving these extra days of paid vacation, Cook issued an e-mail thanking employees for their hard work and everything they do. This break is similar to the one that was announced by Cook during last year. Just how much this will boost spirits and affect productivity has yet to be seen, but it must have worked well last year for the company to be doing it again.

The full letter Tim Cook sent out is below:

Continue reading: Apple employees getting three extra paid days off for an 'incredibly successful year' (full post)

HDD shipments to hit record high, have recovered quite well from the Thailand floods

Anthony Garreffa | Sep 30, 2012 12:20 AM CDT

The Thailand floods were a tragic event, hitting hard drive manufacturers Seagate and Western Digital pretty hard. At the time, hard drive prices went up quite significantly, and are only returning close to pre-flood levels now. How are things business-wise for HDD manufacturers? Well, in a word - great.

Some new numbers from IHS iSuppli have said that the HDD market for PCs has fully recovered, and is set to hit an all-time high. IHS iSuppli expect internal hard drives to smash through 524 million units shipped this year, beating the previous record by 4.3%.

Where is this increased demand coming from? The firm thinks that the boost in shipment numbers is thanks to the impending release of Windows 8, as well as Ultrabooks. While we're close to pre-flood HDD prices, we're still not there yet but IHS iSuppli have said that HDD prices aren't expected to drop below pre-flood levels until, wait for it, 2014. By 2016, if IHS iSuppli's predictions become reality, we're looking at HDD shipments reaching 575.1 million by 2016.

Continue reading: HDD shipments to hit record high, have recovered quite well from the Thailand floods (full post)

Apple v Samsung legal struggle continues, Judge Koh can decide fate of Galaxy Tab 10.1 ban

Trace Hagan | Sep 28, 2012 5:30 PM CDT

I'm sure all of our readers know of the patent wars going on between Samsung and Apple. In case you don't, a brief history: Apple sued Samsung saying their patents were being infringed upon by Samsung products. Judge Koh granted a sales ban of the Galaxy Tab 10.1 at the start of the trial. A jury found Samsung guilty to the tune of just over $1 billion. However, they found that the Tab 10.1 didn't infringe on a single patent.

Meanwhile, the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 is still banned from being sold in the United States. Judge Koh had previously felt that overturning the ban fell out of her jurisdiction as Samsung had appealed to a higher federal court. That court has now ruled that Judge Koh can rule on the sales ban, either reversing it or keeping it in place.

Theoretically, the device should no longer have been banned, or even banned in the first place as the jury found it to not infringe. The sales ban is expected to be lifted as soon as Judge Koh rules on the matter. Samsung was quick to jump onto the court, filing a request to have the ban dissolved:

Continue reading: Apple v Samsung legal struggle continues, Judge Koh can decide fate of Galaxy Tab 10.1 ban (full post)

Apple CEO Tim Cook apologizes to customers for the terrible iOS6 Maps app

Trace Hagan | Sep 28, 2012 10:26 AM CDT

Tim Cook has taken a moment to step down from his high horse and issue a letter to Apple customers saying, "We are extremely sorry for the frustration this has caused our customers and we are doing everything we can to make Maps better." What??? Apple is apologizing for something they did? I thought everything they did was always perfect.

As Cook suggests, the Maps app will get better as more customers use the app as it will help to crowdsource bugs, locations, and some of the other issues that people have experienced with the new mapping app. In his letter, Cook details an interesting statistic: "In just over a week, iOS users with the new Maps have already searched for nearly half a billion locations."

No doubt half of those searches were people looking for mistakes! If you're interested in reading the full-text of the letter, it is below for your enjoyment:

Continue reading: Apple CEO Tim Cook apologizes to customers for the terrible iOS6 Maps app (full post)