Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Technical News - 08 September 2010

  • Apple plugs drive-by download flaws in Safari browser

    September 8, 2010

    The browse-and-you're-hacked vulnerabilities affect both Windows and Mac users. One of the three vulnerabilities is the DLL load hijacking issue that haunts hundreds of Windows applications.

  • Are contributor agreements subversive?

    September 8, 2010

    If you try to contribute to a corporate open source project, especially a "dual core" project, you will probably be given a "contributor agreement" to sign.The agreement gives all copyrights and...

  • iPad halo tarnished by bad 3G provider (Orange UK)

    September 8, 2010

    Regular readers will know that I own an iPad 3G/WiFi 16GB (I couldn't justify the price bump to the higher capacities knowing the excessive premium I was paying for the extra storage). I bought my...

  • Oracle's offer letter to Hurd: We'll pay you $950,000, bonus up to $10 million

    September 8, 2010

    Oracle will pay new co-president Mark Hurd $950,000 a year with a target bonus of $5 million. Hurd's with a cap of $10 million.

  • Grey Healthcare Group a FalconStor user profile

    September 8, 2010

    Recently Chris Watkis, Grey Healthcare Group's IT Director, and I had an opportunity to exchange messages about what his organization is doing with FalconStor's virtual storage technology. Here's...

  • ASUS Unveils the EIEService for Motherboards

    September 8, 2010

    Filed under: News : Motherboards

    With burnt and corrosion warranty for all motherboards. Read more

  • Spice Mobiles Launches M-5161 & M-6363

    September 8, 2010

    Filed under: News : Mobile Phones

    Comes with multi-SIM, unlimited video record & play and strong battery support for full length movie viewing. Read more

  • Hitachi GST Launches Lifestudio Drive Family

    September 8, 2010

    Filed under: News : Hard Drives

    The LifeStudio family, offered in both portable and desktop models, pulls in, organizes and protects consumers’ stored digital content. Read more

  • iOS 4.1 on iPhone 3G - better than 4.0 (but not as good as 3)

    September 8, 2010

    iOS 4.0 proved to be so disappointing on the iPhone 3G that many users downgraded to version 3. Lifehacker compared 4.1GM to 4.0 on the two-generation old iPhone.

  • HP Sues to Stop ex-CEO Hurd Joining Oracle

    September 8, 2010

    Filed under: News : General

    HP Co sued former Chief Executive Mark Hurd and asked a court to block him from joining Oracle. Read more

  • Samsung Designs High-Speed Wireless USB Chipset

    September 8, 2010

    Filed under: News : PC Accessories

    It will be used in high-res cameras, TVs, PCs, tablets, printers, projectors, Blu-ray players, portable HDDs and mobile handsets. Read more

  • Salesforce announces Chatter Mobile apps for iOS, Blackberry, Android

    September 8, 2010

    Just two months after making Chatter generally available, Salesforce today is announcing Mobile Chatter, apps for the iPad, iPhone, Blackberry and Android devices.In this first couple of months,...

  • GlacialTech Announces AC090N, a Slim Type Notebook Adaptor

    September 8, 2010

    Filed under: News : Laptops

    On the side of the AC090N is a 5V/1A USB port, allowing you to charge batteries of 3C devices while running your laptop. Read more

  • LG Develops Smartphones With NVIDIA Tegra 2 Processor

    September 8, 2010

    Filed under: News : Smart

    LG first to announce smartphone with dual-core CPU based on NVIDIA Tegra. Read more

  • Google Logo Changes Again, Hinting RT Search?

    September 8, 2010

    siliconbits writes "The Google homepage is sporting a new logo that changes color as you type, and it is likely a big hint as to what the company will announce at its search event on Wednesday. When you arrive on the search giant homepage today, you will be greeted with a gray Google doodle."

    Read more of this story at Slashdot.

  • Indian court upholds big tax bill against Vodafone (AP)

    September 8, 2010

    AP - In a landmark ruling Wednesday, an Indian court said Vodafone Group Plc is liable for an estimated $2.6 billion in taxes for its 2007 acquisition of one of India's largest mobile phone companies.

  • Is Ellison trying to devalue HP prior to a bid?

    September 7, 2010

    Is Oracle using Mark Hurd to provoke HP? It looks that way...

  • Oracle plans to give Hurd $950,000 annual salary (AP)

    September 8, 2010

    AP - Oracle plans to pay newly appointed President Mark Hurd a base salary of $950,000 a year. The company also says the former Hewlett-Packard Co. CEO, who was ousted by that company last month, is eligible for a fiscal 2011 bonus of as much as $10 million.

  • Reddit co-founders reunite at Hipmunk

    September 8, 2010

    Hipmunk, an ambitious foray into the packed travel-search market, was founded by one of Reddit's creators and has just brought the other one on as its head of marketing.

  • Etc: Microsoft says "sorry" to a gamer from Fort Gay, WV after banning him for noting his very real hometown in his Xbox Live profile.

    September 8, 2010

    Microsoft says "sorry" to a gamer from Fort Gay, WV after banning him for noting his very real hometown in his Xbox Live profile.

    Read More: AP

    Read the comments on this post

  • BP shifts U.S. oil spill blame onto contractors

    September 8, 2010

    LONDON (Reuters) - BP shifted much of the blame for a rig blast that led to the United States' worst-ever oil spill onto its contractors Transocean and Halliburton.

  • Special Report: The Tea Party goes to school

    September 8, 2010

    HANNIBAL, Missouri (Reuters) - Some Tea Partiers admit mistakes were made. Others are quick to describe the movement's recent efforts in the political arena as not quite ready for prime time.

  • Hitachi Refreshes LifeStudio External Hard Drives

    September 8, 2010

    Offers better local and online storage

  • Microsoft sends Bing back to school

    September 8, 2010

    The company is launching Redu, a site aimed at drawing more people into the debate over the future of U.S. education. Among its features is a Bing map displaying educational job openings.

  • Obama pitches road spending, tax incentives in Ohio

    September 8, 2010

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama will push billions of dollars in new business tax incentives and spending on big construction projects on Wednesday, as he tries to convince a balky Congress to pass measures intended to spur the economy and create jobs.

  • Pre-Order Your Nokia N8 in India

    September 8, 2010

    Worldwide Launch on October 1

  • China Mobile falls as Vodafone sells $6.5 billion stake

    September 8, 2010

    HONG KONG (Reuters) - China Mobile shares fell the most in a year after Vodafone sold its stake in the company for $6.5 billion, nearly double what it paid, but analysts expect the stake sale to have no major impact on the Chinese firm.

  • Frontend2010 Oslo: my thoughts & audience feedback

    September 8, 2010

    Last week marked the inaugural Frontend 2010 conference in Oslo and I was honored to present the opening keynote alongside such a stellar lineup of speakers. The conference was – a miscast MC and a poor sponsor choice aside – a resounding success (the lovely folks at IXD, which organized the conference, were very receptive to feedback on those issues and assured me that they'd be taking greater care on those points for next year.)

    Day 1

    During the conference, I got the chance to attend a number of excellent talks, including Paul's "Your design sucks! (How to manage the sign off process)" which made me realize that my decision, several years ago, to stop doing development work for clients – while painful and difficult – was the right one for me.

    I also loved Elliot's "Stop Worrying & Get On With It: Tips and Tricks for designing for the Modern Web" in which he channelled Mr. Andy "HardBoiled" Clarke and told the audience that it's all right to develop with the latest and greatest web technologies as long as you use them to implement enhancements instead of core features and take into consideration that core functionality should gracefully degrade on older browsers. (See

    Brian Fling gave a lovely talk on Designing Mobile Experiences and I could only sit there and nod my head every few minutes in agreement. What can I say, dude gets it.

    And, it was great to catch Daniel Burka and Rob Goodlatte's presentation (The first 15 minutes - Designing for new-user experiences) in real life after listening to it virtually earlier in the year while I was opening the UX Web Summit.

    Day 2

    On the second day, the lovely Mr. Dan Rubin kicked things off with an excellent presentation on using high-fidelity prototypes for usability testing and rapid iteration. Basically, Dan's technique involves using comprehensive Photoshop mocks of web page UIs as background graphics and layering on top those only the live components and links that are necessary to test a given feature or screen to create simple HTML prototypes that are nevertheless high-fidelity and which you can then use during usability testing (and iterate quickly upon in response to the user feedback you receive).

    I loved the pragmatism and simplicity of Dan's approach although I did raise the question of whether it made it harder to respond to user feedback on aggregate and easier to fall into the trap of having individual users influence the design directly as opposed to having them inform us about the design. User feedback should, after all, inform us about the design and we – as designers – need to filter that feedback and weigh it against our design vision and goals before deciding whether and how to react to it.

    Dan's response was that even though they had to make one or two u-turns, the process worked our remarkably well for them and that having seasoned Experience Designers on the team was an important part of the equation.

    (Having great people on your team is probably the ultimate determiner of success. A good, lightweight, user-centered process helps support those people, keep them happy and sane, and creates an environment that works with them as opposed to against them. This is important because while finding great people for your team is hard, keeping them is even harder.)

    I found Kwame Nyanning's talk to be a great contrast in terms of tone and delivery to all of the other ones. Here is a man with an inner peace and rhythm all his own. While I didn't agree at all with the waterfall nature of the development process he was advocating (although it may work for the types of projects they have on, which I am assuming are mostly high-production-value (and cost), mostly linear, one-offs/microsites for large names like Disney), I loved the aesthetics, pacing, and multi-disciplinary nature of his talk. My tweet at the time pretty much sums it up:

    Hugely enjoying the depth, wisdom, humanity, and effortless tempered cheek in Kwame Nyanning❜s talk at #frontend2010 ❝Designer as anti-hero❞September 2, 2010 1:26 am via Feathers for iPhone

    After Kwame's talk, I decided to finally venture out of the Radisson Blue Scandinavian hotel that the event was taking place in and find myself some warmer clothes (having forgotten to pack anything but t-shirts). Of course, I proceeded immediately to get lost in downtown Oslo and had a great time discovering the town. It did mean, however, that I was late for the after-lunch talks and only got to catch a portion of Meagan Fisher's excellent talk on taking your designs from wireframe to a beautiful finished product. Needless to say, her slides were lickable and you could see that the audience was delighted by the boatloads of practical advice she presented in her highly-concentrated talk. It left you wanting more, like any good talk should.

    Given there was time left still after Meagan's talk, I caught the end of Per Martinsen (AKA Tied Revolverman)'s talk on "Transmedia art and non-linear storytelling". In fact, he had just concluded his presentation and there was a Q&A in progress. One of the audience members (Benny – sorry if I spelled your name wrong) started a debate on the nature of reality that I heartily took part in (hey, you don't get the chance to make use of those long years spent studying critical media theory every day). The ensuing debate was one of the highlights of the conference for me and I'd love to see more talks end in a group discussion. After the talk, Per was also kind enough to take me through his talk, which revolved around his extremely interesting "transmedia" project, Earthbound – Surfing the Apocalypse.

    I did, unfortunately, miss Paul Irish's session (though I really wanted to attend it) as it was on at the same time as the other two talks but I'm looking forward to catching it on the video recording.

    By the time the last pre-closing-keynote sessions came around I was rather knackered. I summoned enough energy to pop into Jina Bolton's CSS session to find a packed room full of entranced people (all but Mr. Heilmann, of course, whom Jina told me was heckling her from the front – this is to be expected!) :)

    In the penultimate session of the conference, sushi & ROBOTS.

    Finally, to round of an excellent series of talks, Christian Heilmann gave us a closing keynote that took us on a ride through a smorgasbord of different web technologies (and techniques) that we have at our disposal today with the aim of both knowing the right tool to use for the job and to try and get us to "build for the future and to convince those who live in the past to join us."

    All in all, I had a great time attending the conference, met some amazing people, and loved Aggie Elisabeth Grøndal Peterson and Per's opening performance (and their show at the dinner) with their band Frost (check out Frost's music on Spotify). And, the whole experience would not have been exactly the same if I hadn't gotten to tickle the ivories of a Steinway grand piano that just happened to be standing out in the hallway. I'm yet again ruined and cannot play any other piano without thinking, "but it's not a Steinway". (It's like the Retina display of pianos.) Oh well.

    Audience reactions

    Oh, and what post would be complete without some of the feedback from my talk (this is the bit that other conference organizers see and go "oh, look, that guy's good, let's hire him to do a talk at our amazing conference!"):

    #Frontend2010 goes with @aral quoting st exupery. Gotta love itSeptember 1, 2010 12:59 am via Touiteur

    Listening to @aral at #frontend2010, really inspiring stuff!September 1, 2010 1:05 am via web

    @aral is awesome! Truly inspiring and excellent speaker! #frontend2010September 1, 2010 1:07 am via Twitter for iPhone

    I'm not even a web designer, yet was thoroughly entertained by @aral's @frontend2010 talk on The Art of Emotional Design.September 1, 2010 1:17 am via Twitter for iPhone

    Enjoying @aral's speak at #frontend2010 .. @codepo8 has hilarious quotes ^^September 1, 2010 1:17 am via Twitter for Android

    Great speak from @aral #frontend2010September 1, 2010 1:36 am via TweetDeck

    awesome presentation by @aralSeptember 1, 2010 1:37 am via Tweetie for Mac

    Great presentation from @aral regarding user experience #frontend2010September 1, 2010 1:43 am via Echofon

    Fantastic two first keynotes by @aral and @boagworld at #frontend2010 #yamSeptember 1, 2010 3:28 am via TweetDeck

    Absolutely loved @aral's and @boagworld's speaches at #frontend2010 #TrulyInspiring waiting for @elliotjaystocksSeptember 1, 2010 3:53 am via Twitter for iPhone

    Had an awesome day at #frontend2010. Really enjoyed the opening talk from @aral "The Art of Emotional Design."September 1, 2010 1:16 pm via Tweetie for Mac

    By the way, if you want to catch my talk, I'm going to be presenting the opening keynote this Friday at the Over The Air conference in London. Hope to see some of you there.

  • Craigslist urged to drop adult services worldwide (AP)

    September 8, 2010

    AP - Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal and national nonprofit organizations said Tuesday they want Craigslist to be "a model for good policy" and officially get rid of its adult services section globally.

  • Rocketalk IM for Phones Released

    September 8, 2010

    New IM and voice chat tool for mobile phones

  • U.S. Justice Dept probing Google/ITA deal: sources

    September 8, 2010

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Justice Department is looking into allegations that Google Inc's purchase of airline ticketing firm ITA Software Inc will cost rivals access to data they need to compete with the search giant as it moves into the travel market, sources familiar with the probe said.

  • U.S. religious leaders condemn "anti-Muslim" frenzy

    September 8, 2010

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. religious leaders on Tuesday condemned an "anti-Muslim frenzy" in the United States, including plans by a Florida church to burn a Koran on September 11, an act a top general said could endanger American troops abroad.

  • Tablet PC market becoming crowded

    September 8, 2010

    Marc Cieslak takes a look at the new tablet computers taking on the Apple iPad at this year's IFA technology conference.

  • Oracle says Hurd eligible for up to $10 million bonus

    September 8, 2010

    BANGALORE (Reuters) - Oracle Corp said its newly appointed president, Mark Hurd, will be paid an annual salary of $950,000 and the former Hewlett-Packard chief will be eligible for a target bonus of $5-$10 million under its executive bonus plan for fiscal 2011.

  • Samsung TVs to Get Android Soon?

    September 8, 2010

    Sony and LG too are again concentrating on the next generation of "connected" TVs

  • offers Chatter networking on mobile

    September 8, 2010

    LONDON (Reuters) - will offer mobile versions of its Chatter tool for social networking inside companies from later this year as it seeks to make its software more ubiquitous and its customers more productive.

  • Asus, Eurocom, Maingear announce first laptops with Nvidia Fermi-based mobile graphics cards

    September 7, 2010

    Nvidia announced its new Fermi architecture for laptop graphics cards last week, and the first takers are now starting to provide details on their new GeForce GTX 400M-series notebooks....

  • Publish your PowerPoint Slides to YouTube

    September 8, 2010

    There are basically two kinds of PowerPoint based services on the web – one that let you create presentations online (like Google Docs or Zoho Show) and the other set comprises of services that let you showcase your presentations to the world (like SlideShare or Scribd).

    BrainShark is a PowerPoint-centric online service that offers a mix of both worlds. It’s not a tool for creating presentations from scratch but it’s more about turning your static slides into a multimedia presentation without installing any plug-ins or software.

    To get started, just upload your PowerPoint deck to BrainShark.

    record audio to presentation

    Once they are processed, you may add voice narrations to your slides using your computer’s microphone or, if you don’t have a microphone, you can call up a number and record audio over the phone itself.

    Alternatively, if your presentation is in the form of a phone slideshow, you may upload an MP3 to go with the whole presentation as background music.

    There’s more. You may upload video clips, pictures, Word documents and even PowerPoint presentations anywhere between your existing slides and BrainShark will bind them all as one presentation.

    Once you are done, hit the “Publish to YouTube” button and it will send your presentation straight to your YouTube account. You can also download your presentations in various other video formats (like MP4, 3GP) for offline viewing or for sharing them on another video site.

    The free version of BrainShark has all these feature but with one limitation – you can’t create “private” presentations with the free account.

    Download Video of Presentations

    Also see: How to Insert YouTube videos in PowerPoint

    Facebook Twitter Digital Inspiration @labnol

    This article, titled Publish your PowerPoint Slides to YouTube, was originally published at Digital Inspiration under Powerpoint, Youtube, Internet.

  • Microsoft aims to sharpen its CRM pitch

    September 8, 2010

    As it gears up to start testing a new version of its product, Redmond says it's tired of letting Marc Benioff's own the conversation.

  • Antivirus isn't dead--it's growing up

    September 8, 2010

    Despite longtime diagnoses that antivirus software is doomed, security will become a service for mobile devices, experts predict.

  • European police in pirate raids

    September 8, 2010

    Premises across Europe, including a Swedish university, have been raided by police in a piracy crackdown

  • Mozilla fixes Firefox holes, curtails clickjacking

    September 8, 2010

    Along with the security fixes, Firefox 3.6.9 gets a new feature to help Web developers reduce clickjacking risks. Also: Chrome 6 gets bug fixes.

  • Godrej's Game LCD TV with Motion Sensing Unveiled

    September 8, 2010

    The game joystick will let you throw darts, bowl and have more fun with the 25 games bundled together

  • Firefox 4 beta 5 lands

    September 7, 2010

    Firefox 4 beta 5 is now available and offers new hardware acceleration, multimedia and security features.The latest beta, for example, offers hardware acceleration through Direct 2D by default....

  • The future US President's Facebook page politics

    September 7, 2010

    The future President of the United States is on Facebook. It's almost a given fact. But with the potential for disaster in their chosen political career, will a shift in forgiving attitudes be...

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