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Sat, 31 Mar 12
Microsoft, Google Race to Speed Up the Web
This may come as news to owners of 4G smartphones, but the Internet apparently isn't fast enough and needs to speed up. Google and Microsoft have submitted separate proposals to accomplish this. Google's SPDY proposal defines and implements an application-layer protocol that reduces latency and seeks to replace parts of the HTTP protocol. It is already being used by Mozilla and Twitter. Microsoft submitted its HTTP Speed+Mobility proposal to the IETF earlier this week. "SPDY did not address battery life in mobile devices or the specific needs of mobile applications," said Sandeep Singhal, group program manager of Windows Core Networking.

Sat, 31 Mar 12
Google Gets Going With Go
Google has rolled out version 1 of its experimental open source Go computer programing language, 14 months after it first announced the language back in 2009. Go "is an attempt to combine the ease of programming of an interpreted, dynamically typed language with the efficiency and safety of a statically typed, compiled language," Go team lead Rob Pike told TechNewsWorld. "It also aims to be modern, with support for networked and multi-core computing," Pike continued.

Sat, 31 Mar 12
PDF to Speech Stumbles a Bit but Sounds Nicer Than Android
I've been looking at ways to optimize the time I spend sitting in traffic. The old days when listening to the radio constituted the sum extent of productivity achieved while staring at someone else's tailgate are long gone, thanks to the smartphone. I've already written about in-car Internet, including extending audio media like podcasts and TV audio streams to the driver's seat. In a recent column, I explained how to add a tablet to the dashboard paraphernalia. Well, what about catching up on the written word?

Fri, 30 Mar 12
PlayStation 4 to Sport Big Graphics Muscle
Sony is working on the PlayStation 4, which it calls "Orbis," and plans to release the device in time for the holiday season in 2013, according to a recent report. The console can reportedly play 3D games at 1080p resolution, as compared to the PS3's 720p. It apparently won't be backward-compatible with games for the PS3 and will reportedly seek to bar owners from playing used games. Some developers say they've already received development kits for the Orbis.

Fri, 30 Mar 12
Google Gives Users a Gander at the Trails They Leave
Google has launched a new tool called "Account Activity," designed to give users a detailed glimpse into their Web usage across all Google sites and services. Account Activity is a personalized, detailed monthly report on Web activity with Google search, Gmail accounts, YouTube and social network Google+. It also indicates location and device information, so a user could see he or she searched from an iPad in a hotel in Italy, for example. Users can also monitor how many Gmail messages they send and receive on a month-to-month basis.

Fri, 30 Mar 12
How to Overclock a CPU: Getting Started
Overclocking a CPU sounds seductive, right? Adjust a few settings on your phone or tablet, and the device goes faster. Games play without laborious, stuttering, forced slow-motion effects, and everything loads quicker. Well, like everything in life, these adjustments involve a tradeoff. Just as there are risks in taking your car out for a rural run and heavy-footing it, there are implications for a CPU speedup. In the case of the car, risks can include a blown gasket, or crashing and possibly getting killed. In the case of a CPU, there are also some harsh possible outcomes.

Fri, 30 Mar 12
Why Tech Tangles Are More Painful for Apple Users
Is Apple pain worse than PC pain? I don't know the answer, but it seems to me that a weird mix of personality, expectation and Apple's business model all conspire to create dreadful pain in Apple enthusiasts whenever something with an Apple product goes wrong. I'm not talking so much about a hardware failure like a hard drive that dies, but something more insidious, like an application that won't launch, applications that crash, mysterious MacBook heat, spinning beach balls of destiny, or oddly consumed hard drive space.

Fri, 30 Mar 12
The Privacy Pickle
"Is privacy only for those with something to hide?" is the title of an open ballot on TuxRadar that has kicked off quite a debate. TuxRadar points to the full-disk encryption option now offered by several Linux distributions -- along with potential law-enforcement implications -- but the topic is also particularly timely in light of Canonical's recent moves to step up Ubuntu's privacy protections and privacy-focused search engine DuckDuckGo's recent adoption by both Linux Mint and PC-BSD. Views have been nothing if not divided.

Thu, 29 Mar 12
'BrowserQuest' Shows HTML5 Could Slay Flash
The Mozilla Foundation on Wednesday released BrowserQuest, a massively multiplayer online game written in HTML5, Java and other open source languages. "BrowserQuest is a showcase of how open Web technologies like HTML5, JavaScript, CSS and WebSockets can be used to create a multiplayer game that scales up to thousands of users," Christian Heilmann, principal developer evangelist at Mozilla, told TechNewsWorld. "Its main purpose is to prove that the Web is a platform for gaming as much as it is a platform for apps and documents," Heilmann continued.

Thu, 29 Mar 12
Adobe Squeezes More Security Into - and More Cash Out of - Flash
In its ongoing quest to keep Flash relevant in the face of strong competition from HTML5, Adobe on Wednesday announced Flash Player 11.2, featuring a silent updates option to enhance the platform's security. Improving the security of Flash Player through silent updates is critical because more than 99 percent of malware installations succeed by targeting out-of-date software installations, and attackers have been targeting users trying to manually search for Flash Player updates with fake update sites, Adobe said.

Thu, 29 Mar 12
Google Guns for Facebook With Third-Party Comment Platform
Google is reportedly planning to launch its own third-party commenting system soon. It will apparently be tied into its Google+ social platform, its Web services and the company's Web search products. Google, according to reports, will make the platform available to third parties in much the same way Facebook offers its platform, wherein visitors to a given website log into Facebook in order to post comments to the site's articles and content. There's been speculation that Google might let visitors to websites log into its comment platform through other services.

Thu, 29 Mar 12
Fork Skewers Photoshop Skin GimpShop
I thought I had found image-manipulating Nirvana with GimpShop. But the wide world of open source software and the Linux community failed me this week. My quest for a better GIMP tool to give me a Photoshop-like Windows experience turned into a fool's folly. Actually, my faith in the Linux OS is still intact. But my disappointment in not finding salvation from resorting to a return to Microsoft Windows caused me to question my decision years ago to convert to Linuxism.

Wed, 28 Mar 12
LulzSec Rears Its Smirking Head in Military Dating Site Attack
Nine months after shutting down operations -- and just weeks after several suspected members were arrested -- the LulzSec hacker community has apparently sprung back to life, hacking the website of military dating site MilitarySingles. However, there's some controversy over whether that site had indeed been hit by the hackers. LulzSec posted news of the hack on a Pastebin page and provided two sites from which details of the nearly 171,000 accounts it had stolen could be downloaded.

Wed, 28 Mar 12
Driving Into the Future: Autonomous Cars
Self-driving cars are no longer just the stuff of science fiction. Increasingly, they're becoming a reality. For the last several years, Google has been testing self-driving, autonomous vehicles in California -- and if they ever become mainstream, their promise is better controlled and less deadly roadways. "We want to improve people's lives by making driving safer, more enjoyable, and more efficient," said Jay Nancarrow, a Google spokesperson. "Over 1.2 million people are killed in traffic worldwide every year, and we think autonomous technology can significantly reduce that number."

Wed, 28 Mar 12
'Angry Birds Space HD' Soars Into Orbit
The "Angry Birds" franchise is one of the App Store's biggest success stories. When it debuted almost two and a half years ago, its developers hit on a potent formula for casual gaming profits. Make it colorful, make it work nicely with a touchscreen, and make it really easy to figure out. Then throw in a satisfying element of property destruction, set the stage with a broad-strokes plot that's really very dark if you think about it too much, and you have your mega-million-earning game.

Tue, 27 Mar 12
RIM Aims to Reel In Devs With BB10 Preview
Research In Motion will soon give software developers prototype devices that run an early version of the BlackBerry 10 platform. RIM is hosting a BlackBerry 10 event in Orlando in May to coincide with its annual BlackBerry World user conference. There, a limited number of developers will have the chance to tinker with the product. The Canada-based tech company said the prototype, labeled "BlackBerry 10 Dev Alpha," is not the finished smartphone intended for consumers.

Tue, 27 Mar 12
Iran Still Stuck With Stuxnet
Iran apparently has developed an antivirus program to neutralize the notorious Stuxnet virus that put a kink in the country's nuclear development program in June 2010. Iran has vowed to distribute the antivirus program for free in about a month, according to Trend, a publication that describes itself as a private media outlet in Azerbaijan. The announcement may be intended to buck up the spirits of Iranians, according to Jeffrey Carr, CEO of Taia Global and author of Inside Cyber Warfare: Mapping the Cyber Underworld.

Tue, 27 Mar 12
Meg Whitman vs. Tim Cook by the Numbers
Last week was an interesting week. Apple announced what appears to be a penis iron in the new iPad, and folks are burning through their monthly 4G data plans in a few hours. Tim's having his first Antennagate moment, and Steve Jobs he isn't. On the other hand, Meg Whitman announced her first major restructuring since taking over HP, and on paper it not only looks impressive, but also is reminiscent of what Carly Fiorina attempted to do in a lot of ways. Whitman appears to have Fiorina's vision and can execute, which bodes well for HP.

Tue, 27 Mar 12
New Camera+ Packs Great Features but Still No Video
Somehow, some way, I've avoided using the amazingly popular Camera+ photo shooting and editing app. My only excuse? I'm pretty rigorous about which apps I bother to download, play with and use. An apptrocious phone packed with gobs of apps tends to annoy me, so I have a habit of sticking with solid performers rather than clutter my mind with options. But Tap Tap Tap, the company behind Camera+, just upgraded the app to version 3, and the waves of activity around it caught my attention: Maybe I'm missing something here by using my staid built-in Apple Camera app on my iPhone 4.

Sun, 25 Mar 12
Another iThing, Another iTempest
The debut of the latest iPad was once again an orgy of revenue for Apple. The company claims 3 million were sold in the opening weekend, and that certainly does sound like a lot. But just as iPad sales are running hot, apparently so are the iPads themselves. Some users claim the devices are growing alarmingly warm in their hands during heavy use. It's easy to see why the new iPad could grow hot. It boasts some heavy graphics power to support that super-high-res Retina display.

Sat, 24 Mar 12
Facebook on Passwords During Job Interviews: Don't Ask, Don't Tell
Reacting to recent reports that some organizations are demanding that job seekers turn over their Facebook passwords, the social network on Friday criticized the practice for undermining members' privacy expectations and security. It also pointed out that such a move could expose employers who ask for passwords to dangerous liabilities and vowed to take action to protect the privacy and security of its users. However, some observers have expressed skepticism about Facebook's motivation.

Sat, 24 Mar 12
IP&TV World Forum, Day 3: Multiscreen Mania
I'm surrounded by screens here at the Olympia exhibition hall -- tablet-sized, big screens, you name it -- and they all connect with each other. It's day three at the IP&TV World Forum. The lowly remote control can soon be buried under the sofa cushions for good, judging by the offerings from set-top box manufacturers here. I don't mean that the remote is simply being replaced by what's called the "second screen" -- often an iPad or phone. These makers are offering OTT and other television delivery products complete with multiple tablet-like devices for remote control.

Sat, 24 Mar 12
12 Steps for Staying 1 Step Ahead of Online Security Threats
With the explosion of Web-based communications in the form of applications, blogs, podcasts, and social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter, new security threats that can cause serious damage to computers are emerging. As they access these Web-based services from both work and personal computers, many users are unaware that they may be exposing themselves and their organizations to risk. In this increasingly social and interactive world, organizations must take the necessary steps to strengthen their defenses and protect their online property.

Sat, 24 Mar 12
Photoshop Beta Pops With New Features, New Look
It's not often that Adobe offers the public a free preview of its flagship product, Photoshop, but that's what it's doing with the next version of the photo editing software. Adobe announced Thursday that a beta release of Photoshop CS6 for both PCs and Macs is available from the company's website. Although the CS6 download is free, you have to create a user account before you can install it on your computer. That process is simple, but what Adobe will do with the information it collects from you isn't immediately revealed by the company.

Sat, 24 Mar 12
Remote Web Desktop Full: Really Smart App Deserves Better Support
We've been seeing applications that allow you to remotely access desktop PCs for years. They have tended to function on a PC-to-PC connection basis over the Internet -- like Symantec's pcAnywhere software, which is often used for remote PC troubleshooting. More recently, we've been seeing tools that allow you to operate PCs from tablet platforms, like the $24.95 LogMeIn Ignition for Android. However, what about the other way? What about applications for accessing your tablet, or phone from your PC? I've been craving some way to manage the Android files and system in an expansive, non-fiddly environment, like the kind I get at a desktop computer.

Fri, 23 Mar 12
Nvidia's New GPUs Could Be Real Game Changers
Nvidia has launched the first graphic processing units based on its next-generation Kepler graphics architecture, which offers the promise to deliver superior gaming performance, according to the company. One of the key components of video games on the PC is, of course, the graphics, and as long as there have been games, there have been attempts to take video performance to the next level. The Kepler graphics architecture is reportedly the result of more than 1.8 million man-hours of work over the past five years. Designed for gaming PCs, the chips include the Nvidia GeForce GTX 680 GPU for desktops, and the GeForce 600M line for Ultrabooks.

Fri, 23 Mar 12
IP&TV World Forum, Day 2: The Future
I'm attending the IP&TV World Forum, aka the Internet Protocol Television Show, at the Olympia exhibition hall in sunny London. I have been checking out technologies being deployed in Europe that we may be seeing state-side very soon. HbbTV is a hybrid television delivery system available now in some European countries that combines synchronized broadcast with broadband. Hbb-Next -- the incarnation currently in development -- is taking user interface and second screen -- tablet and smartphone -- incorporation very seriously.

Fri, 23 Mar 12
Taming That Spaghetti of Wires Taking Over Your Home
New home construction and remodeling projects, from a multimedia wiring angle, have the advantage of incorporating cable management at the design stage. That design is structured into the build. Unfortunately, existing homes don't have this luxury -- tearing into walls is disruptive and expensive. The ideal wiring plan for a home consists of Cat 5e or higher specification cables home run from multimedia devices -- like smart TVs, for example -- to a single terminating point within the home, usually at a garage or utility closet.

Fri, 23 Mar 12
Is Fragmentation Breaking the Android Dev's Will?
Developers are losing interest in creating apps for Android because of the continued fragmentation of the operating system, according to a survey conducted jointly by Appcelerator and IDC between January and February. Its results show that interest in Android phone app development fell by nearly five percentage points over the past quarter to about 79 percent. Interest in Android tablets fell just over 2 percent to about 66 percent. Meanwhile, iOS remains the leading platform for devs, according to the study.

Fri, 23 Mar 12
Why Tablets Will Send PCs Toward Oblivion
As analysts watch the killer success of Apple's new iPad launch -- 3 million sold over the first three days -- I'm seeing a lot more predictions that overall sales of tablets will soon start to exceed those of PCs. Crazy to think of it, isn't it? PCs are everywhere. Many homes have several, businesses have gobs, and they are a staple item used to connect billions of people to, well, everything. And yet, tablet sales growth rates are eclipsing the growth of PC sales -- even the generally hot-selling MacBooks Airs and MacBook Pros.

Thu, 22 Mar 12
IP&TV World Forum, Day 1: Disrupting a Disruptive Technology
Internet-delivered television was once thought of "disruptive," but it looks like it's about to be firmly adopted by common television programming suppliers worldwide and incorporated into their delivery systems. Looking around at the IP&TV World Forum, I'm seeing a whole bunch of monkey wrenches sitting on the sidelines. I'm at the stunning Victorian-era Olympia exhibition hall in a surprisingly sunny London. The three-day Internet Protocol Television Show is the must-attend event for this technology.

Thu, 22 Mar 12
Birdman Takes to the Sky on a Wing and a Wii
Dutch mechanical engineer Jarno Smeets created a stir on YouTube recently with a video that shows him flying by flapping a set of wings attached to his back -- without any connection between the wings and his arms. However, many questions have been raised regarding the video's authenticity. Smeets claims to have used two Nintendo Wii controllers held in his hands to transmit his arm motions to accelerometers via Bluetooth. These signals were in turn directed to two electric motors that flapped the wings.

Thu, 22 Mar 12
Does Your IaaS Environment Have Sleeper Cells?
As many active users of IaaS can tell you, IaaS, whether implemented by an external service provider or provided by an internal service provider team, arguably grants you much more control of the underlying technology "substrate" than other cloud deployment models. In some cases, this is a good thing; for example, when you have unique legacy constraints or technology requirements that must be satisfied for applications to work properly. This control over the environment is generally perceived by customers as a security and operational benefit.

Thu, 22 Mar 12
The New iPad Is a Sizzler in More Ways Than One
During the new iPad's first weekend out of the gate, the tablets sold like peanuts at a baseball game, but it didn't take long for a potential problem to crop up with the device. Concerns raised in online Apple forums about heat produced by the tablet set off a string of stories that culminated Tuesday with the company, typically taciturn about problems with its products, denying that the new iPad is suffering mass malfunctions. The third-generation iPad operates well within Apple's thermal specifications, the company said.

Thu, 22 Mar 12
TEA: A Smooth Text Editor That Hits the Sweet Spot
The TEA Text Editor is a very handy writing tool that delivers a much different user interface. For most computer users cranking out words or program code for digital consumption, text editors are often preferable to feature-bloated word processors. TEA pours on features yet keeps from getting too steamy. If you have tried very basic text editors such as Leafpad or gEdit, the TEA text Editor will greatly surprise you. If you are familiar with the Geany Text Editor, you will find TEA a very similar writing tool.

Wed, 21 Mar 12
Plan Afoot to Tame the Wild World of WiFi
Users of mobile devices on GSM networks may soon be able to roam seamlessly from one WiFi hotspot to another without having to repeatedly log in and authenticate their devices. The GSM Association and the Wireless Broadband Alliance are collaborating to create technical and commercial frameworks for WiFi roaming. The idea is to let mobile devices seamlessly connect to WiFi hotspots using a SIM card. "We expect six steps to seamless WiFi roaming in the next three to four years," said Sue Rudd, director of service provider analysis at Strategy Analytics.

Wed, 21 Mar 12
Nokia May Turn Tattoos Into More Than Body Art
Today a tattoo is a popular way of showing off a little individuality, but historically tattoos were used as a form of communication. Roman soldiers and slaves were tattooed on the hands, arms or even face as a way to alert those around them to their status, allowing authorities to more easily keep track of those in bondage. Soon tattoos might be used for communication again -- but for a very different purpose. Nokia has filed a patent application with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for a magnetic tattoo that could alert the "wearer" to incoming calls or messages to their mobile device.

Wed, 21 Mar 12
Big Biker Hangout: The Web
When biker Robert Swidersky learned about BikerOrNot.com from his son a few years ago, he decided he'd give it a shot. "The more I used it, the more I found things I liked," said Swidersky. "I was informed about rides and events around me, and I could also inform others about rides and events, meet people, and create a fan page as to where I can share my hobbies or interests, or join other peoples' fan pages. The best way to describe it is it's like Facebook for bikers." Swidersky's not alone. The site has 540,000 registered users and around 100,000 active users.

Wed, 21 Mar 12
Linux Throws a Bit of Android Into 3.3 Kernel
Linus Torvalds, the father of Linux, announced version 3.3 of the kernel Sunday. Among the most noteworthy changes found in 3.3 is the merging of kernel code from the Android project. Linux 3.3 also includes support for a new architecture, the Texas Instruments VelociTI Very Long Instruction Word architecture used in its C6x family of multicore devices. These were developed for embedded processor applications. Other new features include improved balancing, a virtual switch implementation and several network improvements.

Wed, 21 Mar 12
Sparrow Flies but Doesn't Quite Sing
How awful is the iPhone's native Mail app? My opinion: It's not awful at all. It isn't exactly a bright and shining paragon of mobile app awesomeness either, I suppose, and it hasn't changed a great deal since I first started using iOS regularly nearly four years ago. But it's a workhorse. It's simple, it does its job, there are no astoundingly bad design decisions, and I'm just accustomed to using it, warts and all. But for the last week or so a new email app has been running up the charts in the App Store, promising "an efficient and pleasant mailing experience."

Tue, 20 Mar 12
Microsoft Gives Office a Metro Makeover
Microsoft's next version of its office suite, Office 15, is currently available as a private preview for beta testers. However, a reviewer not bound by Microsoft's non-disclosure agreement claims to have used a copy, and he says the new version has a Metro look and feel to it that ties in Office to the minimalist aesthetics of Windows 8. The changes to Office make it seem as though the product received a revamp to be a Metro app, even though it was designed for the desktop, according to Paul Thurrott in a review on his Supersite for Windows.

Tue, 20 Mar 12
Security Wonks Tussle Over Tolly Test
Security experts have been debating for years the merits of whitelists versus blacklists in securing an enterprise, and last week the debate continued to rage with the release of some test results from the Tolly Group. The group tested three endpoint protection programs: McAfee Endpoint Protection Suite, Symantec Endpoint Protection 12.1 and Parity Suite 6.0 from Bit9, which also sponsored the tests. The McAfee and Symantec have blacklisting solutions. Bit9 uses whitelisting.

Tue, 20 Mar 12
Windows 8 and the Perception Game
Windows 8 is likely the most ambitious UI project for Microsoft since Microsoft Bob, and we all know how that ended up. For what it was intended to do, Bob was both cutting-edge and very successful. However, the bar was set too high, and it failed spectacularly. I could argue that if folks initially saw the iPod as a heavy, expensive device with poor content access (no Windows support or iTunes), or the iPhone as crappy, expensive, fragile phone with slow connectivity (2.5G in a 3G time frame, no screen protection), or the iPad as an expensive netbook without a keyboard (which is kind of what it is), they would have failed too.

Tue, 20 Mar 12
iPhoto for iPad Is Gorgeous, Fluid, Fun - and Slightly Confusing
I haven't had long to play with the new iPhoto app for iOS on my iPad 2, but first impressions might actually tell the tale pretty well this time: It's at once gorgeous, fluid, and fun ... but it's also confusing. How so? First, the look and feel. The app is broken out into four sections: Albums, Photos, Events and Journals. Your Albums are shown off on a green glass shelf and look like old-school photo book icons. It looks fantastic and a little tacky at the same time. Subtle animations and sharp details help it all look great, but the photo book idea ... eh, whatever.

Sun, 18 Mar 12
AT&T Flails in the Quicksand
The name of AT&T's pain, for this month anyway, is Matthew Spaccarelli. He's a customer that gave the carrier a small thumping in court, and that would have left AT&T with a very minor scab. But it seems the company just couldn't resist picking at it. It all started when Spaccarelli took AT&T to small-claims court over his smartphone data rate being throttled. He's an unlimited data user, and like many unlimited AT&T subscribers who use the network heavily, he saw his data rates being choked down to a crawl.

Sat, 17 Mar 12
Can Nokia Bring the Right Stuff to the Tablet Race?
Nokia has confirmed that work is progressing on a Window 8 tablet device. That Nokia is opting for Windows 8 instead of Android is hardly a surprise, given Nokia Chief Executive Stephen Elop's history with Microsoft. Still, there are many questions surrounding the endeavor. What can Nokia bring to the tablet market that is unique? Will its special relationship with Microsoft give it a leg up over the scores of other iPad tablet contenders either on the market or coming soon? Can it translate its cellphone-building chops to tablets?

Sat, 17 Mar 12
And Now for Something Completely Different: Taking the Windows 8 Plunge
Microsoft has made available a consumer preview version of its upcoming Windows 8 operating system that you can try out. The OS caught my eye because the tile-like user interface appears radically different from the boring old reiterations of Windows 3.1 -- with minor tweaks that irritatingly require getting used to after every upgrade. This looks like it's worth it. It incorporates a touch interface and striking colors, and it will be equally at home on tablets as on PCs. The app concept is included, as is immersive Web without grubby screen borders.

Sat, 17 Mar 12
Android Tablets and Windows 8: Let the Games Begin
Windows 8 is on its way. In fact, it's already here, in a manner of speaking. Microsoft recently released what it called a "consumer preview" version of the OS. When the final versions arrive, it will finally give Microsoft a leg up in the tablet market. That might take a bite out of the market share Android has managed to scratch out in tablets. It could also offer an attractive alternative to pricier iPads. But the new line of Windows 8-based tablets might see its biggest impact on the larger use of tablets in the workplace.

Fri, 16 Mar 12
Iran Likely Suspect in Cyberattacks Against BBC
The BBC was the target of hack attacks earlier this month, according to comments made by BBC Director-General Mark Thompson in a wide-ranging speech to the Royal Television Society on Wednesday. There was a simultaneous attempt to jam two different satellite feeds of BBC Persian into Iran, and to disrupt BBC's London telephone lines via multiple automatic calls, he said. There was also a sophisticated cyberattack on the news service. The BCC could not prove who was behind the source of the attacks, which were "nothing new," Thompson said, but "we regard the coincidence of these different attacks as self-evidently suspicious."

Fri, 16 Mar 12
Former Employee to Microsoft: You're Doing It Wrong
Microsoft recently issued the first consumer preview of its upcoming Windows 8 operating system, and at least one user isn't wowed by the dramatic design changes found in the new OS. Microsoft has been keeping users up to date on the software construction process with a blog called "Building Windows 8," meant to get users enthused and informed about the new features. But another blog entitled "Fixing Windows 8" launched on March 3. It is countering some of Microsoft's claims that the new operating system will be user-friendly on both touch and traditional screens.

Fri, 16 Mar 12
Opening the Vault: How Classic B-Ball Footage Finds New Life Online
March Madness is upon us, and there are few better places for hoops fans to get their fix than the NCAA Vault. The Vault, powered by Thought Equity Motion, is a treasure for hoops nuts, hosting video content of the NCAA Basketball Tournament dating back to the 1970s -- dunks, buzzer-beaters, even entire games. By allowing sports fans to relive events from the past, the Vault gives a glimpse into the future of sports video content. TechNewsWorld spoke with Kevin Schaff, CEO of Thought Equity Motion, about how The Vault came to be and where it's going.

Fri, 16 Mar 12
Nvidia's Excellent Linux Adventure
Well, spring appears to be springing early here in the Linux blogosphere's Northern reaches, so summer can't be far behind. Sunny personalities and flower lovers across the land are surely rejoicing, but for Linux Girl, it's one more reason to hit the blogosphere's Broken Windows Lounge early. Penguins and heat do not go together, after all. Luckily, there's been plenty of good news on hand lately to counterbalance the impending seasonal meltdown, and perhaps most notable of all is Nvidia's latest big move.

Thu, 15 Mar 12
Mirage Image Viewer: Seeing Is Believing
Mirage is a fast and simple GTK+ image viewer for the GNOME desktop. Its lightweight structure includes just enough editing power to make it an ideal choice for everyday use. Image viewers come in all sizes and shapes. They can be packed full of editing features and can come with little or no photo management tools. Mirage strikes a handy balance. Mirage serves me well on both my high-powered desktops and my lower-powered netbook and laptops. I like its clean look that does not impose a rigid format on how I use it.

Thu, 15 Mar 12
3D Printing Gets a Speed Injection
The Gutenberg printing press, which was invented around A.D. 1440, truly revolutionized the world. It allowed more people to have access to books, which until that time had to be manually copied by hand. Today the world is seeing another revolutionary advance in printing technology, but this time in 3D printing. The concept of 3D printing isn't that far removed from the traditional printing technique of basically casting ink on a page. It just adds multiple layers that build up an object in 3D. In some cases, it exists around multiple compounds that bond together to create a 3D object.

Thu, 15 Mar 12
Tiny iPads: Big Potential or Fat Chance?
The persistent rumor that Apple will produce a 7-inch iPad garnered some buzz Tuesday when a loose-lipped Samsung "official" revealed that the mini tablets would start shipping later this year. The unnamed official with Samsung Electronics made the disclosure about the so-called iPad mini in a recent news report. Rumors about an iPad mini have been swirling for months. They received a boost during the holiday season, sparked by the success of Amazon's 7-inch, Android-based tablet, the Kindle Fire.

Thu, 15 Mar 12
AT&T Could Lose Big in David-vs.-Goliath Match
AT&T and litigant Matthew Spaccarelli are engaged in a war of words that AT&T appears to be losing. The incident began when Spaccarelli sued AT&T in small claims court in California. He charged that the company had violated his unlimited data plan agreement for his iPhone by throttling, or slowing down, his data speed. The court agreed and awarded Spaccarelli $850 for his trouble. That was bad enough for the carrier, which prompted an outcry earlier this year when it began scaling back speeds on customers' unlimited plans after they exceeded a certain data threshold. However, the situation quickly worsened for AT&T.

Wed, 14 Mar 12
Icon Project's Lost That Shortcut Feeling
Long ago, I jailbroke my iPhone. Ultimately, the experience was less than fulfilling, and within a few weeks I opted to unjailbreak it back to its normal state. Jailbreaking somehow made the phone feel a little frail. The only jailbreak options I could find at the time necessitated the phone to be hooked up to my computer each time it was turned on. Not a huge problem -- I don't turn my phone completely off very often. But then there was the respringing ... the constant respringing.

Wed, 14 Mar 12
Open Source Coopetition Fueled by LF Growth
The Linux Foundation has come a long way since initiated in 2007 as the fusion of the Open Source Development Lab and Free Standards Group. At its start, I wondered why there was no membership or representation from Canonical, which was the hottest thing in Linux at the time. Today, Canonical is a member of The Linux Foundation and the organization continues to grow in its core of system software and Linux as well as in mobile devices and, more recently, the automotive industry -- among my predictions for Linux strength in 2012.

Wed, 14 Mar 12
Internet of Things Close, Thanks to ARM's Reach
Chipmaker ARM has announced a tiny product with huge implications. The company unveiled its ARM Cortex M0+, a 1mm microchip it says can push the edge of the Internet beyond your laptop or PC. Everything is on the drawing board -- from a network-enabled fridge to devices powered by your body's heat. "The main advantage is a balance between energy and performance," Thomas Ensergueix, ARM's CPU product manager, told TechNewsWorld. The new 32-bit processor consumes about one-third of the energy used by current 8-bit and 16-bit processors while at the same time delivering better performance.

Wed, 14 Mar 12
Keeping a Lid on It: New Motorcycle Helmet Technologies
It's extremely important to wear helmets when riding motorcycles, according to Jackie Gillan, president of Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety, but that's not just her personal opinion -- it's based on clear facts about what happens in the case of a crash. "We know from research that every time a state repeals its motorcycle helmet laws, there's an immediate jump in deaths and brain injuries from motorcycle crashes," Gillan said. Head injuries are a leading cause of death in motorcycle crashes, but helmets have been found to reduce motorcyclist deaths by 37 percent and brain injuries by 67 percent.

Tue, 13 Mar 12
Apple Forgets Steve Jobs and Announces a Non-Magical iPad
Over the years, I've watched company after company lose its invaluable edge because executives critical to its success moved on, or died, and didn't pass on critical skills. Only IBM really made a massive effort not to screw this up, and even it eventually forgot, forcing a massive reset -- which almost caused it to fail -- in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Sony Walkman, PlayStation, Trinitron; Palm PDA; RIM BlackBerry; Microsoft Windows 95; Intel Inside; Cisco Flip Camera; and now it looks like I'll be adding the iPad to this list in a few years.

Tue, 13 Mar 12
Has Canonical Found the Keys to the Computing Kingdom?
There seems to be no end in sight to the bold moves and bold proclamations surrounding Ubuntu Linux these days. First we had the debut of Ubuntu TV, surrounded by trumpets and fanfare. Then, late last month, we had the Ubuntu for Android announcement, along with a wide assortment of grand and enthusiastic predictions regarding its significance. Soon afterward, it was the release of the first Ubuntu 12.04 beta, complete not just with the new Head-Up Display interface but also Canonical founder Mark Shuttleworth's assertion that Ubuntu is now in the process of surpassing its proprietary rivals on the innovation front.

Tue, 13 Mar 12
Your Employees May Be Causing That Data Drip, Drip, Drip You're Hearing
Nearly 80 percent of organizations have experienced a data breach in the last two years due to employee negligence or maliciousness. That was one of the findings in a study released last week by the Ponemon Institute and sponsored by antivirus software maker TrendMicro. A surprising discovery by the researchers was how most breaches are discovered, according to Jon Clay of Trend Micro. "Fifty-six percent found out about a breach by accident," he told TechNewsWorld. "Thirty-seven percent were found out by an audit or assessment."

Tue, 13 Mar 12
OnLive Almost Smooth Enough to Make You Forget You're in the Cloud
When I first considered taking a look at OnLive Desktop Plus, a cloud-based service from OnLive that delivers a Microsoft Windows desktop-like, touch-based experience on my iPad, I admit, I was skeptical. Really skeptical, and not just because trying to describe the service is a mouthful. At first, I'm like, why bother? Apple's iWork apps -- Pages, Numbers and Keynote -- do a pretty good job of opening Microsoft Office documents already and can usually export them well enough. Do I really need to have access to full-fledged Microsoft Office apps from the cloud, usable through my iPad?

Tue, 13 Mar 12
Journalists Battle Web Censorship With Internet 'Enemies' List
While developments such as the Arab Spring show the power of the Internet, there remain news blackouts, harassment of bloggers, and even attempts to shut down social media in several nations. This is one of the key findings of Reporters Without Borders, which released its annual "Enemies of the Internet" report on Monday, listing countries that curtail access to the Web and freedom of expression. The updated list was released in conjunction with World Day Against Cyber-Censorship. The list shines a spotlight on nations that filter content, track cyberdissidents or use the Internet as a tool for propaganda, among other offenses.

Tue, 13 Mar 12
Google+ and the Long Game
Google+ chief Vic Gundotra sat down with Guy Kawasaki, cofounder of Alltop.com and founding partner at Garage Technology Ventures, at this year's SXSW convention. The topic at hand: how Google+ plans to remain afloat in the hotly competitive online social network space. When Google+ launched over the summer, it quickly picked up millions of followers, but it still struggles to compete against social networking giants such as Facebook and Twitter.

Sun, 11 Mar 12
iPad: What's in a Name?
Apple finally drew the curtain on its next-generation iPad, revealing a device that looks a whole lot like last year's model but is definitely packing some heavier guts. First of all the screen is now a super-sharp Retina display, so named because theoretically you shouldn't be able to spot the individual pixels with a naked eye. It's like the display you can already find on an iPhone 4 or 4S. Also, as usual, the new iPad is loaded with faster processors -- it's got a new A5X chip with quad-core graphics.

Sat, 10 Mar 12
What Does One Serve With Raspberry Pi?
The ultra-cheap Linux computer on a circuit board has its roots in the classroom. But the bare-bones computer, dubbed "Raspberry Pi," has potential to teach industrial embedded programmers some new tricks. Raspberry Pi, a $35 credit-card-sized computer sold without keyboard or monitor, runs several Linux distros and can hook up to a mouse, keyboard, HDTV and Ethernet. It went on worldwide sale last month and quickly sold out. It supports Python and Perl programming languages.

Sat, 10 Mar 12
What the New iPad Tells Us About the Next iPhone
For the most part, new features for Apple's mobile products usually appear in the iPhone before they make it to the iPad, but that's not the case with this latest release of the tablet. Support for LTE mobile phone networks and a new muscular processor, the A5X, are two features found solely in the new iPad, which is why they could be headed for the next iPhone, expected to be released this summer. "Implementing LTE in the iPad is a strong indicator that Apple will bring LTE to the iPhone," Ross Rubin, an analyst with the NPD Group, told MacNewsWorld.

Sat, 10 Mar 12
The Privacy Shell Game, Part 2
The White House has proposed a consumer privacy bill of rights, a step that could result in new laws regarding what companies can do with information about their online customers and users. Privacy advocates are cautiously optimistic, though some fear the result will be laws rendered toothless by lobbyists. Other critics already see problems in the way the proposal is structured. The proposed bill of rights suggests the Federal Trade Commission can legally enforce codes of conduct if they are affirmatively adopted by companies subject to the FTC's jurisdiction.

Sat, 10 Mar 12
Apple TV Adjusts Picture, Stays on Channel
At the same time Apple announced its new iPad on Wednesday, the company also introduced the latest version of its TV set-top box and software. The new Apple TV model looks basically the same as the previous version -- a small black box that hooks up to a TV via HDMI -- but changes to the product include deeper integration with services like iCloud and iTunes Match, as well as improved resolution. Apple TV users can now watch video with 1080p playback. They'll also see an updated user interface.

Sat, 10 Mar 12
Facebook Needles Twitter, Pinterest, With New Interest Lists
Facebook is rolling out yet another feature to keep members engaged with the site for as long as possible. Called "Interest Lists," Facebook touts it as a way for users to create their own personalized newspapers with special sections -- or feeds -- on topics that matter the most to them. There will be traditional news sections like business, politics, sports or style, along with sector-specific ones such as tech news, NBA players, and art critics. The content on these lists will be a mix of news stories and data from original sources.

Sat, 10 Mar 12
'Kony 2012': World Connects to Smoke Out Evil Warlord
"Kony 2012," 30-minute online video spotlighting the atrocities of Joseph Kony, head of Uganda's Lord's Resistance Army, has garnered support around the globe for his removal. In 2005, Kony was indicted for war crimes by the International Criminal Court in The Hague, after decades of brutal actions against people -- children in particular -- in several countries, including Urganda, the Democratic Republic of Congo, the Central African Republic, South Sudan, and Sudan. News story has chronicled his horrifying deeds -- namely the abduction of boys to fight in his army and the kidnapping of girls to be sex slaves.

Fri, 9 Mar 12
OpenSUSE, Linus' Daughter, and a Question of Security
There's nothing like a rant to get the conversational ball rolling here in the Linux blogosphere, and if it can be a rant from Linus Torvalds himself, well, it doesn't get much better than that. That, in fact, is just what last week afforded in the form of a Google+ post from the father of Linux on the topic of openSUSE security. "I don't think I can talk about 'security' people without cursing, so you might want to avert your eyes now," Torvalds began. "I gave OpenSUSE a try, because it worked so well at install-time on the Macbook Air, but I have to say, I've had enough."

Fri, 9 Mar 12
Diving Into GIS: A Starter Guide
If you were looking at television weather maps during last week's U.S. tornado activity, you were looking at a GIS, or Geographic Information System. Those red and purple splotches racing across the screen represented intensity levels of rotating storm cells. The map itself, the county lines, and the splotches were all data layer elements making up the map. GIS is a system for capturing, storing, manipulating, analyzing, organizing, and displaying data as it pertains to a geographic area. A GIS like the one shown on TV can be developed with any number of Feature Layers driven by a database.

Fri, 9 Mar 12
New iPad: One Giant Leap for Power Users, One Small Step for Everyone Else
Apple handily increased its lead in the tablet and HDTV set-top box space when it revealed its new iPad and new Apple TV at its media event Wednesday. Why huge? The raw specs on the new iPad give awesome Retina HD screen capabilities, and the A5X chip is a dual-core bad boy with quad-core graphics capabilities. What does this mean? Gorgeous graphics and silky smooth flicking and zooming with text so sharp it will look like glowing printed paper -- and that's if you're only reading novels.

Fri, 9 Mar 12
Holy Semiconductors! IBM Reveals 1Tbps Holey Optical Chip
IBM on Thursday introduced a prototype chip dubbed the "Holey Optochip," a wedding of traditional computer chip technology with the use of optical pathways. Able to transmit 1 terabit of data per second, the prototype chipset could eventually result in faster downloads of information like apps and streaming video. The prototype to be discussed at the Optical Fiber Communications Conference in Los Angeles, Calif., carries with it staggering processor power yet uses off-the-shelf silicon.

Fri, 9 Mar 12
Apple Ready to Go Off the Google Map?
Apple's newest version of iPhoto, as shown yesterday during its announcement about the latest iPad, is using maps from OpenStreetMaps instead of Google Maps for its journals and slideshow features. Google Maps is still the default source of data for other areas of iOS, but iPhoto maps are now using information that the company generated by using OpenStreetMaps. That organization gathers data from open resources such as GPS devices, government data and local knowledge to put together detailed map information.

Fri, 9 Mar 12
Solar Belch Could Stink Up Energy and Communications Networks
Solar flares -- clouds of charged particles and plasma from the sun -- have hit Earth, according to the National Weather Service. The solar flares have been making their way toward the planet since Sunday. The storms don't generally cause direct physical damage to people because the Earth's magnetic field repels much of the radiation. However, as climate scientists learned during a previous solar flare in 2002, the storms can seriously disrupt GPS signals, radio communications and the power grid.

Thu, 8 Mar 12
The Privacy Shell Game, Part 1
With much fanfare, the Obama administration recently unveiled a blueprint to improve consumer privacy protections online in the United States. This consists of four parts: An online consumer privacy bill of rights, a stakeholder-driven process to specify how those rights apply in specific business contexts, enforcement by the United States Federal Trade Commission, and greater interoperability between the privacy frameworks of the U.S. and its partners overseas.

Thu, 8 Mar 12
LXDE: This Lightweight Distro Isn't Missing Much
It's no wonder that the Linux desktop operating system is not attracting hordes of new users from Microsoft Windows and the Mac OS X platforms. Linux has almost too many desktop choices, and most of them are far from good. One clear exception is the Lightweight X Desktop Environment, or LXDE. I am becoming increasingly enamored with it as the near ideal Linux OS desktop environment. Consider the other choices. Developers continue to monkey around with the functionality of Gnome 3 and KDE 4 desktops.

Thu, 8 Mar 12
Samsung Makes TV a Little More PC
Samsung's ES8000 -- a so-called smart TV complete with gesture and voice controls as well as a touchpad remote -- is ready to hit shelves. Attendants at January's Consumer Electronics Show got a first glimpse at the new line of smart TVs, but the sets weren't available until Tuesday, when Samsung announced pricing and shipping details for the interactive devices. Personalization and control are two of the features that Samsung's touting in its new line. The TVs will have built-in cameras and microphones that can be used for applications such as Skype.

Thu, 8 Mar 12
iPad Emerges With Sharper Image and Zippier Chips
Apple on Wednesday introduced the world to the latest version of its iPad, equipped with 4G LTE technology, a quad-core processor and a Retina display. Apple also unveiled an updated Apple TV product. It will support 1080p viewing and sport a new interface. It will be tied into iCloud so that users can also access their music library or other content. The main focus of today's event, though, was the new addition to the iPad family. The device, which is being referred to as simply "iPad" instead of iPad 3 or iPad HD, has a variety of new features.

Thu, 8 Mar 12
It's Business as Usual for Anonymous as Panda Takes a Hit
The hacktivists known as "Anonymous" have retaliated following Tuesday's news of the arrests of LulzSec hackers exposed by their former leader, Hector Xavier Monsegur. Overnight, Anonymous hackers took down more than 25 websites belonging to Panda Security. They also posted email addresses, usernames and passwords of more than a hundred of the firm's employees and defaced a number of marketing-related sites. Members claiming to be part of Anonymous posted numerous messages aimed at both Panda Security and at Monsegur, also known as "Sabu." In one post, the group noted "Yeah, yeah, we know... Sabu snitched on us."

Wed, 7 Mar 12
Buzz Shakes Off Clutter With Streamlined Contacts Management
I haven't lost a phone number in about 10 years. That's thanks in part to never having lost a cellphone or dropped it into a large body of water -- not in the last decade, anyway. And now that cloud syncing services are easy to use, even a missing or broken phone doesn't necessarily mean you'll have to resort to one of those sheepish "send me your numbers" posts on Facebook. But it does mean your personal phonebook may one day become very cluttered.

Wed, 7 Mar 12
Smart Tools App Hits Genius on the Clever Meter
I was looking for an app that would substitute for the dedicated and expensive rangefinder device that's used for judging long distances while hunting and golfing, when I came across Android Boy's remarkable all-in-one $2.50 Smart Tools. This product has taken the smartphone-as-tool concept to the next level by providing tools for length and angle; distance; compass, including metal detector; and sound, including dB meter and vibration. The construction bubble, or spirit level, is a classic example of smartphone accelerometer technology that detects tilt in relation to the earth's ground plane.

Wed, 7 Mar 12
Riding on Electricity
They don't make any noise. They don't vibrate. They don't rely on the many tiny controlled explosions of internal combustion. Electric motorcycles, in short, are completely different beasts from their gasoline cousins. "It's the magic carpet ride," said Abe Askenazi, chief technology officer for electric motorcycle manufacturer Zero Motorcycles. "You're being propelled forward, but you're not aware of all the drama that's normally involved in that propulsion. It's almost like you've distilled the real purity of motorcycle riding to its basic dynamic. It's almost like flying."

Wed, 7 Mar 12
iOS Smokes Android in HTML5 Drag Race
Apple's iOS handles HTML5-based games as much as three times better than Google's Android in HTML5, according to a new study from Spaceport. The report specifically measured how many images could be moved around the screen at a time while maintaining a rate of 30 frames per second. The researchers tested on the latest versions of iOS, Android and BlackBerry Tablet OS, the operating system found on Research In Motion's PlayPook.

Tue, 6 Mar 12
Protecting NASA From Hackers Is Not Rocket Science, Say Analysts
NASA has become a popular target of hackers. The space agency's computer network was breached 13 times in 2011 -- to the point where suspected Chinese hackers gained "full functional control" of computers used by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory," a government inspector general told congressional investigators. The agency spends just $58 million of its $1.5 billion annual budget on computer security, NASA inspector general Paul Martin said recently. That low priority extends to physical security.

Tue, 6 Mar 12
Sen. Wants FTC to Take a Hard Look at Mobile Apps' Snooping Practices
Neither Apple nor Google are doing enough when it comes to addressing how iPhone and Android applications can access users' private information, according to Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y. On Monday Schumer called for the Federal Trade Commission to launch an investigation into reports that iPhone and Android applications can essentially steal data like private photos and address books. Mobile applications for iPhone and Android can gain access to users' photo libraries and, in some cases, share the photos online, according to recent reports. These followed reports last month that some applications on the iPhone and iPad could upload entire address books to third-party servers.

Tue, 6 Mar 12
Data Breach? Try Rubbing Some Free Credit Services on It
Before your company finds itself embroiled in a lawsuit over a data breach that spills personal information about your customers all over the Internet, you might want to take a look at some recent research by Carnegie Mellon and Temple Universities. Data breach victims are six times less likely to file litigation against a company if they receive free credit monitoring following a breach, according to analysis of 230 federal breach lawsuits from 2000 to 2010. That finding surprised one of the researchers working on the study.

Tue, 6 Mar 12
OMG, Apple and Microsoft Have Traded Places
Apple and Microsoft have kind of switched places with their recent operating system refreshes. Microsoft, which is dominant with PCs but anything but on tablets and smartphones, is leveraging its smartphone platform heavily to create a new PC product. Apple, which is a small player with PCs but massively dominant with smartphones and tablets, is keeping the two technologies at arm's length. Microsoft's latest OS is a smartphone-like product, although it is weakest with smartphones. Apple's is a PC-like product, although it is weakest in that space.

Tue, 6 Mar 12
In the Field of To-Do Apps, This One's a Clear-Cut Winner
With the proliferation of list-based to-do apps, including Apple's own category-thumping Reminders app, one thing has become plain to me: The very best to-do app or list app is 100 percent subjective. Why? The best to-do app is the one that you, the holder of the iPhone, actually use. If it's pretty or powerful and lets you set deadlines and reminders or snap photos and add them to list items or email assignments to people you know ... those features are all well and good, but only if you use the features.

Tue, 6 Mar 12
Raspberry Pi and Cotton Candy: Computing's Newest Treats
There has never been any shortage of interesting names here in the Linux world, but recently a decidedly sugary theme has emerged. Just in the past week, we saw the debut of Cotton Candy and the long-awaited Raspberry Pi -- two diminutive computing devices that may have the potential to shake up the computing world. Small, portable and relatively low-priced -- at $199 and $25, respectively -- there's no doubt that these new contenders have made quite a splash. Do they represent a new computing trend?

Sun, 4 Mar 12
Google's Walls Come Crashing Down
If you've visited basically any of Google's major services over the last several weeks, you may have noticed a little orange box that pops up as soon as you get to the page, sometimes hanging out right over the spot you wish you could click. "We're changing our privacy policy and terms. This stuff matters. Learn more or dismiss." By now a lot of people are used to seeing policy and ToS and EULA updates so often that one more notice from yet another service that they use on a daily basis just ends up in their mental spam filters.

Sat, 3 Mar 12
SpeechJammer: Big Brother Is Shushing You
The First Amendment is meant to protect freedom of speech, but a new device could thwart it -- not through censorship but by affecting the brain's cognitive processes. In George Orwell's seminal novel 1984, the Ministry of Truth controls news, entertainment and information, while the Ministry of Love is there to monitor, arrest and convert dissidents, real or imagined. However, even Orwell and his fictional ministries could not have imagined a potentially more sinister device -- the SpeechJammer gun invented by two Japanese researchers.

Sat, 3 Mar 12
Loophole Could Give Android Devs a Private Picture Show
Similar to Apple's iOS, Android is apparently vulnerable to apps secretly copying photos. Android developer Ralph Gootee create a test app that masquerades as a simple timer but steals the most recent image on the user's smartphone and posts it on a public photo-sharing site. Critics said the development further emphasizes the danger of Google's hands-off approach to the Android Market. "The open nature of Android development is a risk," Patrick Runald, senior manager of security research at Websense, told LinuxInsider.

Sat, 3 Mar 12
FBI Chief Calls Cyberthreats Public Enemy No. 1
In the near future, cyberthreats will be the leading threat to the United States, FBI Director Robert Mueller warned in a speech on Thursday at the RSA Conference in San Francisco. Traditional crime, from mortgage and healthcare fraud to child exploitation, have moved online, while terrorists have become increasingly cyber-savvy, Mueller said. Meanwhile, law enforcement is also confronting hacktivists, organized crime, hostile foreign nations spying on the U.S. and online and mercenary hackers.

Sat, 3 Mar 12
ACTA Action, Part 3
With SOPA and PIPA out of the picture for the foreseeable future, ACTA, the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, has becomes the world's eminent piece of online piracy legislation. Many countries, including the U.S., have signed the agreement, but questions linger. In Part 3 of our three-part podcast about ACTA, TechNewsWorld speaks with Maira Sutton from the U.S.-based Electronic Frontier Foundation, a long-time critic of ACTA. Sutton details the foundation's grievances with agreement and offers up an alternative.

Sat, 3 Mar 12
OS Showdown: Will 8 Be Great? Will Mountain Lion Roar?
Later in 2012, we'll see the arrival of two major operating systems: Microsoft Windows 8, a preview of which was offered to the general public earlier this week, and Apple's OS X Mountain Lion. Are we lining up for a major OS showdown? Or are we not comparing apples to apples? Windows 8 will run on desktops, laptops, tablets and everything in between, while Mountain Lion, despite its incorporation of some features from mobile iOS, is restricted to desktops and laptops. Microsoft's already touting Windows 8's security.

Sat, 3 Mar 12
VMware Hatches Spring Hadoop Cross-Breed for Big Data
Virtualization giant VMware has unveiled Spring Hadoop, which integrates its Spring Framework with the Apache Hadoop platform. Spring provides a comprehensive, lightweight framework that will make it easier for devs to build solutions around the Hadoop platform, according to the company. Spring Hadoop is available under the open source Apache 2.0 license and can be downloaded free. "Spring is the most popular development framework for enterprise Java, and this release makes the power of Apache Hadoop available to the vast Spring community of developers," said VMware's Adam Fitzgerald.

Fri, 2 Mar 12
Lytro Cam Lets Photogs Shoot Fast, Focus Whenever
A camera that allows photographers to control the focus in a picture after it's shot is set to start shipping on Friday. The Lytro Light Field Camera looks like an old slide viewer, measuring 1.61 by 1.61 by 4.41 inches. At one end of the camera is a f/2 lens and 8x zoom. At the other end is a small LCD touchscreen that measures 1.46 inches diagonally. Exposure can be set by tapping the screen. After taking a shot, focusing effects can be performed on the screen too.

Fri, 2 Mar 12
Bluetooth Is Not Just for Headsets
With cable-and-wire spaghetti proliferating in and around our homes and offices, threatening to consume our devices and us in the end, it may be time to take a look at Bluetooth wireless technology, which is great if you can get it to work. Wire management in the financial trading floor school of thought consists of filling raised flooring with cables progressively until the voids are full -- and then moving the operation to new premises and starting again, with new and resultant reduced wires. Nice idea.

Fri, 2 Mar 12
Linux Loses Flash Player - but Does Anyone Care?
Adobe has been a fickle friend to Linux in recent times. Not only did the company put the brakes on mobile Flash last year, but it also put Linux users on a roller-coaster ride for 64-bit Flash and it pulled the plug on AIR for Linux. The latest affront? Coming soon, there will be no more standalone Flash Player for Linux. Instead, Linux users who want Flash will have to do it through Chrome -- unless, of course, they happen to choose from among numerous alternative players out there. Is it the worst of times -- or the best of times? Or does it just not matter?

Fri, 2 Mar 12
What's Apple Hiding in B82?
It's no secret that Apple will unveil the new iPad 3 at its March 7 event for journalists next week. The coy and vague invitations to the event featured an iPad-looking image, with the words, "We have something you really have to see. And touch." Beyond the hope for a wicked-sharp new iPad 3 screen and speculation about a beefier processor, a whole different set of rumors has been gaining momentum: First, might Apple take advantage of all the hoopla around the attention-grabbing iPad 3 and use it to introduce an iOS-based sibling, a new generation of the Apple TV?

Thu, 1 Mar 12
Microsoft Opens Windows 8 Sneak Preview to the Masses
Microsoft launched its Windows 8 Consumer Preview at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona on Wednesday. The OS features a user interface similar to the one found on the Windows Phone mobile OS. It was designed to work on mobile devices, desktop PCs and all-in-one devices. Users can store settings and files in the cloud for access from any Windows 8 device. The OS also introduces charms, which speed up navigation around the OS. Windows 8 also has a high level of built-in security and a factory reset and refresh.

Thu, 1 Mar 12
Linux Fans Gorge on Raspberry Pi
Frantic buyers cleaned out the shelves of two UK retailers offering a small $35 Linux computer from the Raspberry Pi Foundation. The credit-card-sized device, which is named after the foundation, plugs into a TV and a keyboard. It can be used to work on spreadsheets, play games, and do word processing, and can also play high-definition video. The foundation entered into licensed manufacture partnerships with two British companies, Premier Farnell and RS Components, which will make and distribute Raspberry Pi devices on its behalf.

Thu, 1 Mar 12
Online Medical Resources: The Doctor Is Always In
Online medical resources are improving healthcare, access to information and communication between patients and physicians. Patients -- and even doctors -- who want more information about a health topic are more likely to turn to the Web than any other source, and that trend is only increasing. This arena is one Karolyn Gazella understands firsthand. She collaborates with the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians to publish the Natural Medicine Journal.

Thu, 1 Mar 12
Clementine's No Peach, but It Is a Pretty Sweet Music Player
The Clementine Music Player is an up and coming application that could replace your default music app. It is a close cousin to Amarok with just enough of its own personality to make it stand apart from the crowd. On any computing platform today, users have ample choices of music players. Most of these music player apps have a common look and feel. Some simply play your playlists. Others mix in playback and music management enhancements. Ultimately what makes you decide on a favorite player is the user experience first and the feature list second.


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