Business, Financial & Legal News - Page 244

All the latest Business, Financial & Legal news as it relates to tech, gaming, and science - Page 244.

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Thieves steal over $60,000 worth of goods from Steve Jobs' house

Anthony Garreffa | Aug 15, 2012 2:18 AM CDT

The late Steve Jobs' home was broken into recently, where thieves stole more than $60,000 worth of "computers and personal items" from the former CEO of Apple, reports the San Jose Mercury News. Jobs' house is on the 2100 block of Waverley Street in Palo Alto, and was broken into on July 17.

It was on August 2, however, that police arrested Kariem McFarlin, a 35-year-old man from Alameda. Fast forward to August 7, McFarlin was arraigned on one count of residential burglary and selling stolen property. McFarlin's bail has been set at a hefty $500,000, with the man potentially facing a sentence as long as seven years and eight months, this includes an extra year for "excessive taking of property" according to Santa Clara County Deputy District Attorney Tom Flattery.

Flattery hasn't yet said if the stolen property included some of Jobs' posthumous possessions or if it instead belonged to other members of his family. Police and DA's office have kept the mouth's sealed on details of the case, but Flattery does hint that McFarlin didn't know that the house he was breaking into belonged to Steve Jobs, the attorney says "the best we can tell is it was totally random".

Continue reading: Thieves steal over $60,000 worth of goods from Steve Jobs' house (full post)

NVIDIA calls out Intel HD4000 graphics in recent Analyst's day slide

Trace Hagan | Aug 14, 2012 4:40 PM CDT

Turns out NVIDIA doesn't think to highly of Intel integrated graphics, who would have figured? They apparently feel that the HD4000 series is the same as HD3000 series in that they are both incapable of playing 40% of games. KitGuru turned to an expert to analyse the slide, and the expert happened to be from Intel.

The slide, seen above, contains quite of bit of information about the testing NVIDIA performed. "If nVidia claims that over 40% of the top games are unplayable on Intel HD4000, then that's simply not true", said Huddy. The idea is that Intel graphics are unable to play top 2011 games at the lowest settings and provide over 30 FPS.

Of course, Intel denies these claims. It's true, if you want the best of the best performance, you'll have to go to a dedicated solution from AMD or NVIDIA, but Intel's integrated solution is better in recent years and will allow playing to occur on laptops and value desktops. Intel, due to the number of CPUs it ships, is the largest GPU provider.

Continue reading: NVIDIA calls out Intel HD4000 graphics in recent Analyst's day slide (full post)

Bizzaro world: Apple licensing iOS design patents to... Microsoft

Anthony Garreffa | Aug 14, 2012 12:21 AM CDT

Sorry for the attention-grabbing headline, but it really is necessary because this is quite the bizarro world right now to read, and report on this. But, Apple are licensing some of their iOS design patents to Microsoft.

The news was unveiled during the ongoing patent slapping game between Apple and Samsung, with a Reuters reporter commenting that the information came from Boris Teksler, Apple's director of patent licensing and strategy, who went on to explain that the deal also features an "anticloning" agreement.

Ian Sherr, a reporter for Dow Jones and the Wall Street Journal has said that the design patents are covered under a cross-licensing agreement that the two heavyweight company's have set up.

Continue reading: Bizzaro world: Apple licensing iOS design patents to... Microsoft (full post)

Demonoid operators arrested in Mexico, Anonymous plans revenge attack

Anthony Garreffa | Aug 12, 2012 11:25 PM CDT

Demonoid was taken down by a DDoS attack on July 24, with early reports suggesting that the site's downtime was temporary. But, it has gotten a lot worse: Ukranian authorities have announced they ordered ColoCall, the nation's largest datacenter and host of Demonoid, to disable to site and hand over data.

This would've been a coordinated, international effort, but it wasn't clear if Demonoid was being used as a "gift" from the Ukraine to the US. We've seen how the US wants to play dirty against MegaUpload, and founder Kim Dotcom, but this is crazy. London-based international record label consortium, IFPI, and INTERPOL have since revealed they were involved in organizing the strike, which wasn't limited to Ukraine.

It seems as though Mexican authorities are involved, too, as they have reportedly made more than one arrest as well as seizing assets. IFPI anti-piracy director, Jeremy Banks has said:

Continue reading: Demonoid operators arrested in Mexico, Anonymous plans revenge attack (full post)

RumorTT: AMD buyout rumors inflate AMD's share prices

Anthony Garreffa | Aug 10, 2012 12:29 AM CDT

Rumors are circling that AMD could be an acquisition target, and these rumors have inflated AMD's share prices by close to 8%, where they hit $4.34 per share. MarketWatch hasn't gone into much length about the rumors themselves, where they've only quoted Evercore Partners analyst Patrick Wang.

Wang has said that Qualcomm and Samsung were both potential buyers with a possible bid on the chipmaker. Wang doesn't believe the rumors have much solidity, where he says "I think it's unlikely they get a take-out offer". But, we've seen what acquisition talks can do to a company's share prices, where rumors of OCZ being scooped up by Seagate saw OCZ's shares blow up by 22%.

EE Times' reporter Syvie Barak wrote a story listing the potential candidates of an AMD acquisition, where she pointed out Qualcomm as the number one suspect. She notes that Qualcomm have already acquired assets from AMD's done-and-dusted handheld business a few years ago. Barak also notes that by acquiring AMD, it would give Qualcomm "increased leverage with manufacturing partners like TSMC and Globalfoundries".

Continue reading: RumorTT: AMD buyout rumors inflate AMD's share prices (full post)

Google gets fined $22.5m by FTC over Safari tracking

Trace Hagan | Aug 9, 2012 2:33 PM CDT

Google: "Don't be evil." However, it would appear that the Federal Trade Commission feels that Google might have overstepped that by a wee bit, okay, a large bit, judging by the size of the fine levied against the company over the Safari tracking incident. The FTC announced today that Google has agreed to pay $22.5 million to settle the claim, the largest fine ever levied by the FTC.

The FTC charges that Google "misrepresented to users of Apple Inc.'s Safari Internet browser that it would not place tracking 'cookies' or serve targeted ads to those users, violating an earlier privacy settlement between the company and the FTC." Jon Leibowitz, Chairman of the FTC:

The record setting penalty in this matter sends a clear message to all companies under an FTC privacy order. No matter how big or small, all companies must abide by FTC orders against them and keep their privacy promises to consumers, or they will end up paying many times what it would have cost to comply in the first place.

Continue reading: Google gets fined $22.5m by FTC over Safari tracking (full post)

NYPD teams up with Microsoft for new advanced city-wide surveillance system

Anthony Garreffa | Aug 9, 2012 2:24 AM CDT

The New York mayor, Michael Bloomberg, has taken the covers off of a new crime-fighting system developed by Microsoft. Bloomberg also revealed that New York City will take a cut of the profits if the system is sold to other administrators.

The new system will give police the ability to quickly gather and visualize massive amounts of data from multiple sources such as cameras, license plate readers, 911 calls, police databases, and more. Once it collates the data, it then displays the information in real-time, both visually and chronologically, giving investigations a central location to look into crimes as they happen, or as they're reported.

The new system has been dubbed "Domain Awareness System", and was developed by Microsoft engineers who worked with New York police officers. DAS for short, has the ability to host a features, such as being capable of spotting a suspicious looking vehicle, and being able to track its recent movements, or use cameras to track back and see who left a suspicious package. DAS sports live video feeds, massive databases of recent crime patterns and can accept input direct from the field in real-time from sources like 911 calls or police radios. Police Commissioner Ray Kelly has said "all the information is presented visually and geographically and in chronological context".

Continue reading: NYPD teams up with Microsoft for new advanced city-wide surveillance system (full post)

Amazon to jump into patent war, arms themselves with IP leader

Anthony Garreffa | Aug 9, 2012 1:34 AM CDT

According to a piece on Reuters, Amazon is looking to scoop up a bunch of intellectual property (IP) experts to help them enter the patent acquisition and licensing game, after seeing the patent war between Apple, Google, and more.

Amazon have reportedly hired executive recruiting firm Argos Search in order to help Amazon hire an IP "Acquisition and Investment Leader" that can "identify and evaluate strategic IP acquisition and licensing opportunities" according to a job description that Reuters had fall into their hands. The person Amazon hires will work close with all of Amazon's technology team's and leaders on future product development, according to the document. Amazon said in their job posting:

At Amazon we are rapidly growing in many new and exciting technology areas. To support and protect our expansion we are seeking an executive to work with our business teams to identify and procure intellectual property.

Continue reading: Amazon to jump into patent war, arms themselves with IP leader (full post)

An Apple Store Genius saves woman from being kidnapped

Anthony Garreffa | Aug 8, 2012 9:28 PM CDT

This is something you don't see or hear everyday, but a few nights ago a Kentucky-based woman was forced to walk into an Apple Store with her kidnapper, who was forcing her to purchase goods on her credit cards. But an alert Apple Store employee came to her rescue, and she is now safe and the kidnapper is in prison.

Police have said that the woman met the man, who called himself "Greg", when he arranged a date with her. When they first met, "Greg" showed up to her house and forced her into his car at gunpoint. While holding a gun to her, he forced her to drive around to a handful of stores to purchase cellphones in her own name, with her own money.

"Greg" and his victim then drove to an Apple Store in Louisville, where they tried to buy some Apple products from one of the in-store Geniuses:

Continue reading: An Apple Store Genius saves woman from being kidnapped (full post)

Samsung accused of copying Apple yet again, but this time its for child labor abuse at a Chinese factory

Anthony Garreffa | Aug 8, 2012 2:29 AM CDT

Samsung have been accused by activist group China Labor Watch of a bunch of infractions, with one of them being quite serious: employing workers as young as 14 years old at its supplier's factory in China. Samsung, in response to the allegations, issued a statement where the company said they've re-inspect the factory in question, but have claimed that it had previously passed all inspections. Samsung said:

Samsung Electronics has conducted two separate on-site inspections on HEG's working conditions this year but found no irregularities on those occasions. Given the report, we will conduct another field survey at the earliest possible time to ensure our previous inspections have been based on full information and to take appropriate measures to correct any problems that may surface. Samsung Electronics is a company held to the highest standards of working conditions and we try to maintain that at our facilities and the facilities of partner companies around the world.

China Labor Watch didn't just find underage employees, but the factory's management would reportedly abuse workers, and also failed to treat, or compensate those who experienced work-related injuries. It doesn't stop there, with more accusations that the factory forced excessive overtime, sometimes to as much as 11 hours per day with just a single meal break, in 'extremely dangerous conditions'. Also, those who reported product defect were fined severely, rather than rewarded.

Continue reading: Samsung accused of copying Apple yet again, but this time its for child labor abuse at a Chinese factory (full post)