Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Technical News - 28 September 2011

  • Three Key Trends Drive China Mobile To $58 Stock Price
    September 28, 2011
    China Mobile is the leading mobile telecom service provider in mainland China and the largest mobile service provider in the world. It has a customer base greater than the population of many countries. The company provides both mobile voice services and value added services such as music, voice mail, SMS text messages and mobile Internet as well as applications for music, gaming and TV.
  • Wall Street advances on hopes for Greece deal
    September 28, 2011
    NEW YORK (Reuters) - Stocks rose on Wednesday as investors remained cautiously optimistic about progress on a rescue deal for Greece.

  • Greece to face inspectors, Merkel hints at bailout
    September 28, 2011
    ATHENS (Reuters) - EU and IMF inspectors will return to Greece on Thursday to decide whether Athens has done enough to secure a new batch of aid vital to avoid bankruptcy, while Germany suggested a new bailout may have to be renegotiated.

  • Europe slow to adopt 4G mobile: sector execs
    September 28, 2011
    PARIS (Reuters) - Europe's rollout of fourth-generation mobile networks is trailing major operators in the United States and parts of Asia which are already offering the service to millions of customers.

  • Europe slow to adopt 4G mobile: sector execs (Reuters)
    September 28, 2011
    Reuters - Europe's rollout of fourth-generation mobile networks is trailing major operators in the United States and parts of Asia which are already offering the service to millions of customers.
  • Samsung To Pay Microsoft Royalties In Patent License Deal
    September 28, 2011
    Microsoft this morning said it will receive royalties from Samsung's sales of Android-based mobile phones and tablets under a new patent cross-licensing deal. The two companies also agreed to cooperate the on development and marketing of Windows Phone, the Microsoft mobile device operating system software.
  • Amazon Debuts New Kindle Fire Tablet (Live)
    September 28, 2011
    By any measure, the Amazon Kindle has been a big hit; analysts estimate the company has sold more than 18 million of the monochromatic e-book readers since its November 2007 debut.
  • When Is A Web Hacker Good For My Business?
    September 28, 2011
    When you ask for it.
  • Amazon unveiling $199 7-inch Kindle Fire tablet with customized Android
    September 28, 2011
    Bloomberg is reporting that Amazon will announce a new $199 tablet called the Kindle Fire at a press event today in NYC. The WiFi-only tablet reportedly bears many similarities to the company’s successful Kindle e-reader, though it is running a heavily customized version of the Android operating system.
    According to the report, 7-inch Kindle Fire will not be capable of 3G access. The tablet has no cameras or microphones, and comes with a 30-day free trial of the $79 per year Amazon Prime service, which gives customers free two-day shipping and access to Amazon video streaming.
    Many details on the tablet are still to surface—screen type, access to Android apps, and internal specs, among other things. Our own John Timmer is live at the relevant Amazon press event this morning. We will update this post with more information as it becomes available via our liveblog.
    Read the comments on this post



  • Samsung joins forces with Intel and Microsoft
    September 28, 2011
    (Reuters) - Samsung Electronics unveiled on Wednesday software pacts with Intel and Microsoft as the world's No.2 cellphone maker strengthens its mobile software push.

  • Samsung joins forces with Intel and Microsoft (Reuters)
    September 28, 2011
    Reuters - Samsung Electronics unveiled on Wednesday software pacts with Intel and Microsoft as the world's No.2 cellphone maker strengthens its mobile software push.
  • Diebold voting machines vulnerable to remote tampering via man-in-the-middle attack
    September 28, 2011
    Researchers at the Department of Energy's Argonne National Laboratory have demonstrated an electronic "man in the middle" attack that allows remote tampering with the Diebold AccuVote voting system. Argonne's Vulnerability Assessment Team has previously exposed the same sort of vulnerability in Sequoia AVC machines in 2009, and believe the attack could be used against a wide range of voting machines.
    The attack requires tampering with voting machine hardware, and allows for votes to be changed as the voter prepares to commit them. But the devices require no actual changes to the hardware—the hardware required to make the attacks can be attached and removed without leaving any evidence that it had ever been there. The electronics in the demonstrated attack are simply jacked in between two components on the Diebold's printed circuit board using existing connectors.
    VAT team leader Roger Johnston said in a video posted by Brad Friedman of the voting watchdog site The Brad Blog that the physical security measures taken to protect voting machines in many states are inadequate to protect them from pre-Election Day tampering. "They're often kept a week or two before elections in a school or church basement,"Johnston said. And the modifications can be made without picking locks or breaking seals on the devices.
    Diebold has a shaky security history. In 2004, Johns Hopkins University computer science professor Avi Rubin and a team of researchers revealed a broad set of cyber vulnerabilities in the AccuVote system. In the past, there have been suggestions that Diebold itself tampered with elections in Georgia in 2002.
    But while cyber attacks would require a high level of sophistication, the electronic man-in-the-middle attack demonstrated by Argonne's VAT team requires only basic electronics skills, and about $10.50 worth of hardware. "Anybody with an electronics workbench could put this together," Argonne VAT team member John Warner said in the video.
    Read the comments on this post



  • Jobs Sputter as Laws and Regulators Go Wild
    September 28, 2011
    John Boehner will never match President Obama’s rhetorical ability, but that doesn’t mean the House Speaker can’t deliver a good speech. What Boehner lacks in style he makes up for in genuineness and common sense shaped by his small business background. A case in point was the Speaker’s address to the Washington Economic Club this month, during which he advised Obama to fire his Cabinet members if they continue to stymie job creation through regulatory overreach.
  • Analysis: Pakistan's double-game: treachery or strategy?
    September 28, 2011
    ISLAMABAD (Reuters) - Washington has just about had it with Pakistan.

  • Microsoft's Samsung Android Patent Troll Win
    September 28, 2011
    Samsung has joined the long line of Android Linux companies signing patent deals with Microsoft. But what are they really paying for? We don't know.
  • Libya's NTC thinks Gaddafi hiding near Algeria
    September 28, 2011
    SIRTE (Reuters) - Libya's new rulers said on Wednesday they believed fugitive ex-leader Muammar Gaddafi was being shielded by nomadic tribesmen in the desert near the Algerian border, while his followers fend off assaults on his hometown.

  • Alaska Airlines Gets Social With Facebook, Stock Looks Friendly
    September 28, 2011
    With the increasing buzz surrounding social networking, many companies are thinking of novel ways to monetize this platform. One such way is to capitalize on “social shopping," and Alaska Airlines has tapped into this for air travel via a recently launched Facebook app called FlyingSocial.
  • Exclusive: More money flowing to targeted media
    September 28, 2011
    (Reuters) - U.S. companies will spend nearly $200 billion this year on targeted media such as direct mail, text messages or product placement in video games in a major push to concentrate on narrow, valuable groups of consumers, a new study shows.

  • Best Buy To Hire Far Fewer Holiday Temps In 2011
    September 28, 2011
    image thumbnail - see full story for attributions
    Best Buy will hire only 15,000 seasonal workers this for this year's holiday shopping season, down from 29,000 last year, CEO Brian Dunn told Reuters, and is counting on overtime hours for regular staff to bridge the gap. Dunn said the company is not counting on getting a big boost this
  • Microsoft cements position as Android's patent toll collector
    September 28, 2011
    Microsoft is going to make money from almost every Android device shipped.
  • Amazon Tablet: Apple Will Be Fine, But Netflix Is Another Story
    September 28, 2011
    If you've skimmed the news yesterday and today about Amazon's expected tablet announcement, you've noticed that nearly everyone is pointing to Apple's iPad as they key competitive target. That might be true, but I don't expect Cupertino lost much sleep last night. Apple is accustomed to less expensive and more open-sourced (RE: Android) mobile devices outselling them and still manages to be the richest company in the world.
  • Australian Users Petitioning Against Windows 8 Secure Boot
    September 28, 2011
    In his first accepted submission, lukemartinez sends in an excerpt from a ZDNet article on continuing developments about Microsoft's UEFI secure boot requirements: "The Linux Australia community began petitioning the ACCC this week after Microsoft aired plans to mandate the enabling of Unified Extensible Firmware Interface's secure boot feature for devices bearing the 'Designed for Windows 8' logo. This means that any software or hardware that is to run on the firmware will need to be signed by Microsoft or the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) to be able to execute. This would make it impossible to install alternative operating systems like Linux..." Delimeter has further information on the petititions, and Matthew Garret recently posted a follow-up to Microsoft's response to the concerns about secure boot, calling them out on their misinformation.
    Read more of this story at Slashdot.



  • ‘Bad romance’ hurts net singles
    September 28, 2011
    Over 200,000 people in the UK may have fallen victim to criminals who woo them online in order to steal their money.
  • Reports: Amazon to unveil 'Kindle Fire'
    September 28, 2011
    Color is coming to the Kindle.

  • Facebook rumors: Fact vs. fiction
    September 28, 2011
    The recent deluge of Facebook changes -- both those that have already happened and those that are on the way -- have people talking.

  • Microsoft and Samsung ink Android patent and Windows Phone marketing/dev deal
    September 28, 2011
    Another OEM sign deals with Microsoft in order to be able to use Android without fear of being sued.
  • Microsoft, Samsung strike licensing deal
    September 28, 2011
    Under the deal, Samsung pays Microsoft a royalty for every Android phone and tablet it makes. Samsung also agreed to provide marketing support for Microsoft's Windows Phone.
  • Netflix co-founder: Qwikster is a smart, brave move
    September 28, 2011
    The company has received a lot of flack over its move to split its DVD rental operations into a separate business called Qwikster. But Netflix co-founder Marc Randolph is backing the decision.
  • Is Amazon's tablet really the 'Kindle Fire'?
    September 28, 2011
    Here's a recap of what we think we know about the almost official Amazon tablet.
  • Samsung signs Microsoft patent licensing deal to cover Android devices
    September 28, 2011
    Microsoft has signed yet another patent-protection deal with an Android phone/tablet maker. This time it's Samsung which is paying Microsoft an undisclosed amount for licensing undisclosed patents.
  • FliteHub at crux of programmable cloud, advertising
    September 28, 2011
    A new marketplace from Flite promises to make ads more relevant and interesting by taking advantage of cloud-oriented technologies.
  • Heal Thyself: Internet-Based Self-Help for Social Phobia Shows Promise
    September 28, 2011
    Treating social phobia without personal contact between patient and therapist--or without any therapist involvement at all--could be viewed as ironic, but two recent studies suggest that it works. Self-guided online therapy may offer relief for a wide range of disorders.
    The first study, published in the October 2010 issue of the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry , found that self-guided, Internet-based cognitive-behavior therapy (CBT) reduced social phobia symptoms in most of the participants. The Internet CBT program consisted of eight online lessons with components similar to those used in face-to-face CBT: education about symptoms and treatment, instruc­tion on how to challenge the negative thoughts and core beliefs that maintain social phobia, preparation for dealing with physical symptoms of panic, graded exposure to social situations, and techniques for relapse prevention.
    [More]

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  • Stores give staff iPads to keep up with shoppers
    September 28, 2011
    BERLIN (Reuters) - As retailers race to keep up with social media and mobile shopping trends, you could soon see sales staff in your local DIY or department store clutching iPads as they serve increasingly well-connected and informed customers.

  • Intel Drops MeeGo
    September 28, 2011
    PolygamousRanchKid writes with an article in CNet about yet more dismal news for MeeGo. Quoting the article: "Like the Moblin operating system before it, Linux-based MeeGo will will be merged out of existence. MeeGo will become Tizen, Intel said today. 'Intel joined Linux Foundation and LiMo Foundation in support of Tizen, a new Linux-based open source software platform for multiple device categories,' the company said in a statement. 'Tizen builds upon the strengths of both LiMo and MeeGo and Intel will be working with our MeeGo partners to help them transition to Tizen,' Intel said. The initial release of Tizen is expected in Q1 2012, enabling the first devices in the market mid-2012..." PolygamousRanchKid adds "It seems one of those strengths is not actually making it into a product on the market yet." This on the heels of Nokia shipping the N9 (which is actually running a weird Maemo/Meego hybrid).
    Read more of this story at Slashdot.



  • Apple's garden wall is cracking
    September 28, 2011
    At next week's iPhone 5 launch, we'll marvel at Apple's leadership of the mobile Web. But early adoption of HTML5 and the lesson of history tells us iOS will soon be in decline.
  • Unlike Microsoft, Google can claim 99.9 percent cloud uptime
    September 28, 2011
    Google can legitimately say that its service has 99.9 percent uptime, unlike Microsoft, which is still being investigated over false advertising claims.
  • Windows Phone 7.5 DOES NOT transmit location information without user consent
    September 28, 2011
    Microsoft squashes what would now appear to have been a camera app bug.
  • Best Buy holiday hiring to be cut in half
    September 28, 2011
    The brick-and-mortar retailer tells Reuters that it will hire 15,000 holiday workers this year, down from 29,000 last year.
  • Insight: China's e-payment booms, foreigners get the boot
    September 28, 2011
    SHANGHAI (Reuters) - Use your fingerprint to buy a bowl of noodles for half off at 10 yuan ($1.60).

  • Intel Drops MeeGo Mobile OS, Backs Tizen Against Android
    September 28, 2011
    Linux Foundation and Limo Foundation are rebooting their efforts to compete with Apple and the Android camp by merging MeeGo and Limo into a new operating system...

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  • Google Drops Cloud Lawsuit Against US Government
    September 28, 2011
    jfruhlinger writes "A year ago, Google sued the U.S. government because the government's request for proposals for a cloud project mandated Microsoft Office; Google felt, for obvious reasons, that this was discriminatory. Google has now withdrawn the suit, claiming that the Feds promised to update their policies (PDF) to allow Google to compete. The only problem is that the government claims it did no such thing."
    Read more of this story at Slashdot.



  • Save Burger King! Data Bring Global Warming Forecasts to Life in East Boston
    September 28, 2011
    Should we fight global warming to save our urban infrastructure? Alexis Madrigal suggested this approach in an article for The Atlantic. [More]

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  • Price of new Amazon tablet could be big attraction
    September 28, 2011
    (Reuters) - Amazon.com Inc is expected to launch its long-awaited tablet computer on Wednesday, sporting a low-enough price to give Apple Inc's iPad some serious competition for the first time.

  • 12 reasons you might NOT want to buy a Kindle Fire
    September 28, 2011
    Before you rush out and spend your hard-earned cash, I'd like to caution you. There are some good reasons you might NOT want to buy a new Kindle Fire.
  • Google asks to protect Android plans in AT&T, T-Mobile antitrust trial
    September 28, 2011
    In a bid to protect confidential information from "reaching competitors, or even the newspapers", Google filed a motion to block the disclosure of its Android plans.

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