Thursday, July 28, 2011

Technical News - 28 July 2011

  • Forrester: U.S. debt ceiling showdown will affect IT spending
    July 28, 2011
    As Washington D.C. bickers over whether to issue the country another credit card in the form of the U.S. debt ceiling, Forrester Research predicts that the outcome will affect technology spending.
  • Windows Phone 7 with Mango rocks the best mullet in the smartphone world
    July 28, 2011
    Mullets may not be pretty, but they are functional and now that people are bringing phones to the workplace Windows Phone 7 is best at offering business in the front and a party in the back.
  • Amazon inks NBCUniversal deal; Aims to match Netflix's content library
    July 28, 2011
    In Netflix's recent letter to shareholders, the company took an a direct shot at Amazon's move to bundle streaming into Prime shipping subscriptions. Given recent deals, it appears that Netflix's...
  • Nielsen: Apple dominates U. S. smartphones, Android too
    July 28, 2011
    Nielsen has released its June figures breaking down the U. S. smartphone segment, and as expected Apple is still the number 1 maker of smartphones with a 28 percent market share.
  • Updatable firmware could be the new target for hackers
    July 28, 2011
    A few days ago security researcher Charlie Miller announced that he will disclose information at the next Black Hat conference about how he figured out a way to hack the battery microcontrollers...
  • Android vs. Apple and the state of smartphone industry: 4 takeaways
    July 28, 2011
    Nielsen data indicates that Android is the top smartphone platform and Apple is the top manufacturer. In between those data points is a lot of nuance.
  • 90,000+ pages compromised in mass iFrame injection attack
    July 28, 2011
    Security researchers from Armorize have intercepted a currently live mass iFrame injection attack, affecting over 90,000 Web pages.
  • Summer heat begins to ripen Windows Phone Mango update
    July 28, 2011
    I have now personally used three different versions of Mango and still haven't tried the RTM version yet and it gets better and better every time. When it is released consumers should be very happy.
  • Amazon's Kindle tablet doesn't need to be an 'iPad killer' to be a winner
    July 28, 2011
    'Amazon's Kindle Tablet Will Only Support Two Fingers To The iPad's Ten' hyperventilates Ed Sutherland over on Cult of Mac, missing the point entirely.
  • Already have a 3DS? Nintendo wants to give you free games
    July 28, 2011
    Nintendo is "rewarding" early adopters of the 3DS by offering them 20 free and exclusive retro titles from the Game Boy Advance and NES cannon, rather than $80 for missed savings, this fall.
  • Sprint, LightSquared enter 15-year pact for LTE
    July 28, 2011
    Sprint has inked a wholesale 4G LTE deal with LightSquared that diversifies the carrier's network. The agreement runs for 15 years.
  • Google launches service to improve web page load times
    July 28, 2011
    In its ongoing quest to make the Internet all that much faster, Google is once again turning to the techies - this time to give a test run to the latest addition to its Page Speed family, called...
  • Nintendo 3DS drops price to $170 on August 12
    July 28, 2011
    It must be Christmas in July as Nintendo just announced a price cut for the 3DS from $250 to $170 (a $80 savings), just four months out of the gate and with the launch of the Sony PSP Vita looming.
  • Advanced Systems Concepts' ActiveBatch
    July 28, 2011
    Workload management is a boring but necessary function for organizations having complex, multi-platform and hybrid IT/manual processes. ActiveBatch can put all of those functions under management...
  • Reset a Mac's admin password with the Reset Password utility
    July 28, 2011
    Bill Detwiler shows you how to reset a Mac OS X local admin password with Apple’s Reset Password utility.
  • How to install Snow Leopard on a brand-new Lion-based Mac
    July 28, 2011
    Installing Snow Leopard on a Lion machine is harder than you would think. This guide shows you the necessary tricks to make it work.
  • Very scary: Google is now "in the hands of a true corporate radical"
    July 28, 2011
    Google's new CEO, Larry Page, wants to change the world and he's taking us along for the ride...
  • Motorola Mobility's Q2: Wall Street expects better numbers
    July 28, 2011
    Motorola Mobility will be delivering its earnings report for the second quarter this afternoon, and expectations are high. But are they too optimistic?
  • How New York Beat Crime (preview)
    July 28, 2011
    For a limited time, the full text of this article is being made available for fans of Scientific American's page on Facebook. Read it now or become a fan . [More]

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  • Italy borrowing costs soar in volatile euro markets
    July 28, 2011
    MILAN/LONDON (Reuters) - Italy's borrowing costs soared at a closely-watched bond auction on Thursday as investors worried by the euro zone debt crisis and an impasse over the U.S. debt ceiling exacted a high risk premium.

  • Look Out Android And iOS, Here Comes Alibaba's Aliyun
    July 28, 2011
    E-commerce giant Alibaba Group is striking out in a new and unexpected direction. The company said Thursday it’s developed a mobile operating system and that the first smartphones to use it are already headed to market. The Linux-based OS is called Aliyun and is reportedly capable of running Android apps as well as Web-based ones created with Javascript and HTML 5. It also features cloud-based e-mail, Web search, a GPS and the ability to synchronize and store call data, text messages, and photos in the cloud.
    The first device to run Aliyun, Tianyu’s K-Touch Cloud-Smart Phone W700, will go on sale in China at the end of this month for about $416. It will be followed in short order by a tablet.
    Alibaba is working on an English-language version of the Aliyun and hopes to have it finished by the end of this year. It has no plans to make a handset of its own, though, preferring to leave that task to the OEMs. “We shouldn’t make a phone,” Wang Jian, president ofAlibaba Cloud Computing, said during a press conference this morning. “We’re not in that ecosystem, and it’s a very good decision not to make a phone.”
    [Image credit: Penn Olson]

  • James Murdoch faces BSkyB board, doubts about role
    July 28, 2011
    LONDON (Reuters) - James Murdoch looks set to survive a board meeting of BSkyB on Thursday even as questions multiply from other quarters over whether his role in a phone-hacking scandal leave him a fit chairman of the satellite broadcaster.

  • Nintendo slashes 3DS price from $249 to $169, offers freebies to current owners (Yahoo! News)
    July 28, 2011
    Yahoo! News - Today, Nintendo did something that not many saw coming: The company slashed the price of its newest console by nearly a third. As of August 12, the brand new Nintendo 3DS will skydive from its lofty $249 price point all the way …
  • Intel says future Atom processors will match AMD Phenom II performance -- in 2015
    July 28, 2011
    If you're looking forward to improved performance from Intel's tiny Atom processors -- used to power netbooks and tablets -- the company has plans to deliver it. In fact, the chip giant says...
  • Jobless claims 3-month low, pending home sales up
    July 28, 2011
    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The number of Americans claiming new jobless benefits hit a three-month low last week and contracts to buy existing homes rose in June, hopeful signs for the economy which has struggled to regain momentum.

  • Somalia rebels main block to aid: U.N. report
    July 28, 2011
    NAIROBI (Reuters) - Rebels in Somalia -- where famine has been declared and 3.7 million people are going hungry -- burned food and medicine, and killed charity workers, as part of a long-running campaign of extortion against aid groups, according to a U.N. report.

  • Soldier near Fort Hood base arrested with bomb-making materials
    July 28, 2011
    SAN ANTONIO, Texas (Reuters) - A missing U.S. Army soldier is expected to face federal charges on Thursday after he was arrested with "bomb-making material" in his hotel room near Fort Hood, Texas, a local FBI agent said.

  • GE Bets On Holographic Optical Storage
    July 28, 2011
    Lucas123 writes "Years after announcing they had developed holographic optical disc technology that could store 500GB of data, GE this week said they're preparing to license the technology to manufacturing partners. At the same time, InPhase, which failed to actually get its holographic disc product out the door for years, says GE's product is nothing more than a 'science project,' and it's own optical disc is almost ready to go to market — again. But, as one analyst quipped, the old joke
  • Amazon reportedly ramping up 7- and 10-inch tablets
    July 28, 2011
    The online retailer is reportedly busy lining up suppliers in time to launch both a 7-inch and 10-inch tablet sometime in the third quarter.
  • Latest LED bulbs plug in (photos)
    July 28, 2011
    The latest LED bulbs are brighter and give off a more even light than their predecessors, making energy-efficient LEDs more versatile.
  • U.K. High Court orders ISP to block pirate site (Digital Trends)
    July 28, 2011
    Digital Trends - BT, a major UK internet provider, just lost a legal battle against the Motion Picture Association in which UK’s High Court ruled BT must block users from accessing a popular illegal download site. The MPA, the international arm of Hollywood’s Motion Picture Association of America, was successful in their bid to get an ISP to block traffic to Newzbin2, which keeps massive listings of movies and albums available for download on Usenet.
  • OK Go and Google rock out with HTML5 music video
    July 28, 2011
    Rock band and YouTube sensation OK Go has teamed up with Google for "All Is Not Lost," an HTML5-powered music video.
  • #f***youwashington: Hashtag of faith or despair?
    July 28, 2011
    Started by blogger Jeff Jarvis, the political hashtag goes viral. But as it upsets touchy residents in Washington, is it anything more than a cry in the wilderness?
  • McCain Decries "Hobbits," Accused of Ringbearing
    July 28, 2011
    Oxford_Comma_Lover writes "Senator McCain decried Tea Party 'Hobbits' on Wednesday for their failure to support the GOP's debt deal, at times reading from a WSJ editorial that began the analogy. The Tea Party fired back, with a prominent member noting on CNN that McCain had been corrupted by the ring of power. The full text of his floor remarks should be in the Congressional Record later today."
    Read more of this story at Slashdot.



  • Sprint posts wider loss, teams with LightSquared (AP)
    July 28, 2011
    A Sprint logo is displayed on a store in Homestead, Pa., on Wednesday, July 27, 2011. Sprint said Thursday, July 28, its loss widened in the second quarter due to investment losses and a tax expense, but its subscriber figures showed a fragile turnaround continuing. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)AP - Sprint Nextel Corp. on Thursday said its loss widened in the second quarter as it spent more to attract and keep customers, in the face of competition from AT&T and Verizon.


  • Sprint results disappoint, shares off 16 percent
    July 28, 2011
    NEW YORK (Reuters) - Sprint Nextel lost more subscribers than expected in the second quarter and warned that the rate of customer defections would increase in the current quarter, sending shares tumbling 17 percent.

  • TW Cable loses 4 percent of home-video subscribers
    July 28, 2011
    The temptation is to call the people who dropped TWC cord cutters, but are they really unhappy with cable or have they just lost the ability to pay?
  • GM buys into solar EV charging through Sunlogics
    July 28, 2011
    GM Ventures invests in solar panel maker and project developer Sunlogics for solar canopies and large solar arrays at GM facilities.
  • What Happens After the Super-Hero Movie Bubble?
    July 28, 2011
    mattnyc99 writes "In the wake of a not-that-exciting Comic-Con come some (perhaps premature) reports on the so-called "Death of Superheroes" — what one financial group calls "the top of the (comic book) character remonetization cycle." In response, Esquire.com's Paul Schrodt has an interesting look down Hollywood geek road. From the article: "What happens after The Avengers, or Christopher Nolan's third and final Batman movie — after we've seen all there is to see of the best comic-book
  • Road Trip Pic of the Day, 7/28: What is this?
    July 28, 2011
    If you know what today's picture is, you could be eligible to win a prize in the CNET Road Trip Picture of the Day contest.
  • What are Netflix and Hulu users watching, and how?
    July 28, 2011
    Netflix viewers watch more movies, while Hulu users catch more TV shows, but both audiences grab most content directly from their PCs, says a new study from Nielsen.
  • A star is formed
    July 28, 2011
    Chile's radio telescope array opens up the universe
  • British ISP Ordered To Block Links to Pirate Site
    July 28, 2011
    An anonymous reader writes "A UK High Court judge has ruled that BT must block access to a website which provides links to pirated movies. Justice Arnold ruled that BT must use its blocking technology CleanFeed — which is currently used to prevent access to websites featuring child sexual abuse — to block Newzbin 2. 'Currently CleanFeed is dealing with a small, rural road in Scotland,' ISPA council member James Blessing told BBC Radio 4's PM programme. 'Trying to put Newzbin and other
  • China's Alibaba Unveils New Mobile OS
    July 28, 2011
    Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group has launched its own mobile operating system for handsets and tablets in its home country, with the aim of promoting its...

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  • France Télécom Customer Numbers Up, First Half Revenue Down
    July 28, 2011
    France Télécom's revenue and net income for the first half both fell compared to a year earlier, even as subscriber numbers climbed 7 percent,

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