Tech News Today 450
Recorded: March 5, 2012
Published: March 5, 2012
Tech News Today 450: Continuous Flow Of Bud
Master Chief gets personal in Halo 4, Valve working on a 'Steam Console'? The hackers become the hacked, and more.
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- Tom Merritt ( )
- Sarah Lane ( )
- Iyaz Akhtar ( )
- Jason Howell ( )
- Jon Strickland
- Senator Schumer asks FTC to probe Apple, Android
- US Senator Charles Schumer has urged the Federal Trade Commission to investigate reports that applications on the Apple Inc and Google Inc mobile systems steal private photos and contacts and post them online without consent.
- The Senator said he was concerned about a New York Times report that iPhone and Android applications can access a user's private photo collection.
- He also referred to previous reports about uploading address books, names, telephone numbers, etc.
- "These uses go well beyond what a reasonable user understands himself to be consenting to when he allows an app to access data on the phone for purposes of the app's functionality," Schumer said in a letter to the FTC. He acknowledged these behaviors violate the terms of service but "it is not clear whether or how those terms of service are being enforced and monitored".
- "smartphone makers should be required to put in place safety measures to ensure third party applications are not able to violate a user's personal privacy by stealing photographs or data that the user did not consciously decide to make public".
- Halo 4: 84 gameplay screenshots
- Halo 4: Master Chief redesigned and campaign mode widened
- Halo 4 Developer Pledges ‘Darker’ Tone For Shooter Series
- 11 new things we’ve learned about Halo 4 (with video)
- AT at the Xbox Spring Showcase -- Microsoft has released details about Halo 4: Due for launch this winter
- New enemy: "Now he's going to face a new threat, it's very ancient, very dark." (Possibly the Forerunners)
- New look for Master Chief. Character-driven storyline, centered on Master Chief Petty Officer John-117's personal life.
- Josh Holmes is creative director for 343 Industries (A Microsoft group) which took over the series from Bungie
- Multiplayer will tie into events of the Single Player campaign
- Valve said to be working on 'Steam Box' gaming console with partners, could announce at GDC
- Rumor: Valve potentially working on a 'Steam Box' console with partners
- Wouldn't a Valve 'Steam Box' console be nothing more than a PC?
- Before getting excited about a Valve PC game console, remember the Phantom
- Last friday, Josh Topolsky from The Verge reported sources tell him Valve is developing a hardware platform and may release details at the Game Developers Conference (Or may wait until E3)
- hardware spec and associated software which would make up the backbone of a "Steam Box." The actual devices may be made by a variety of partners
- a rumor that the Alienware X51 may have been designed with an early spec of the system in mind
- specs of the Steam Box include a Core i7 CPU, 8GB of RAM, and an NVIDIA GPU. The devices will be able to run any standard PC titles, and will also allow for rival gaming services (like EA's Origin) to be loaded up. USB controlelrs will work but might ship with a proprietary controller.
- give developers a clear lifecycle for their products, with changes possibly coming every three to four years.
- Also biometrics, whole home screen sharing and Apple TV as a main target regarding openness
- Android 'Key Lime Pie' comes after Jelly Bean
- ASUS claims it may be among first to get Android 5.0, confirms Jelly Bean moniker
- Speaking to TechRadar ASUS VP Benson Lin, who said "Asus is very close to Google, so once they have Android 5.0 I think there will be a high possibility that we will be the first wave to offer the Jelly Bean update."
- Chris Ziegler of The Verge reports the same sources that tipped them off about Jelly Bean say the next version fo Android will be called Key Lime Pie
- Anonymous supporters attacked, their bank data vulnerable
- In a twist, Anonymous supporters hit by cyber criminals
- Anonymous Supporters Tricked into Installing Zeus Trojan
- Symantec reports that a tool used by members of Anonymous and its supporters called Slowloris actually had a trojan within it.
- Slowloris is used to take down sites
- Symantec says someone altered a PasteBin guide after the Jan 20th Megaupload raid and included a download link to a Trojanized version of the Slowloris tool
- This version of Slowloris did perform a DoS, but included Zeus, which collected banking and email credentials as well as cookies.
- The guide that was altered is sometimes called "Tools of the DDos trade"
- Another guide explaining DoS attacks also included the altered link and Symantec says the doc was viewed over 26k times and it was often linked to via Twitter
- Yahoo’s New CEO Preps Major Restructuring, Including Significant Layoffs
- ATD says multiple sources within Yahoo claim new CEO Scott Thompson is preparing layoffs in the thousands as part of a huge company restructure as soon as the end of this month
- Many dept affected: PR and marketing, research, marginal businesses and weaker regional efforts.
- Thompson recently hired Boston Consulting Group to help focus the company on where it can grow
- Since Thompson took over in January he also threatened patent lawsuits against FB, controversial move, got a lot of criticism inside the co. as well as outside
- The talks among Yahoo, China’s Alibaba Group and Japan’s SoftBank over Yahoo's stakes in Alibaba and Yahoo Japan (worth around $17 billion). are now paused, at least for now
- Kara Swisher at ATD reported yesterday Yahoo Labs head Prabhavar Raghavan is leaving for Google. Her sources say major job cuts in his research unit influenced the exit.
- Yahoo claimed 14,100 employees in recent quarterly report, up from 13,600 at the end of December 2008, less than a month before Carol Bartz became CEO, even though she oversaw layoffs. Sources say many software contractors aren't being counted because their costs are going through capital expenditures.
- 5 members of Yahoo's board are rotating out. Shareholder and hedge fund manager Daniel Loeb has 6% stake, wants himself in there. Very vocal critic of Yahoo, Thompson is engaging convo.
- Thompson formerly the president of EBay’s PayPal unit. While there, he helped more than double revenue at the payments service while boosting the user base to more than 100 million."
- AMD's selling its remaining stake in GlobalFoundries, the company it spun off back in 2009. At one point, GlobalFoundries was the exclusive manufacturer of AMD chips, but AMD has since partnered with companies like TSMC because GlobalFoundries had difficulty producing 32nm chips. The terms of the deal say AMD will continue to work with the company in the future.
- According to game development tool maker Spaceport.io, HTML5 games run three times faster on iOS than on Android. The company created a benchmark called PerfMarks that measured the ability to animate image movement and pitted the iPhone 4S up against the Samsung Galaxy Nexus. Spaceport.io also found that Android 4.0 performed much better than Android 3.0 and older versions in running HTML5 games.
- Facebook Messenger for Windows is now available to some via Facebook. You may not see a download link right away, but the app will be available to all in the coming weeks. The desktop app does not have video chat or group chat, but does include a notification inbox and a news ticker. A Mac version is planned, but there is no release date announced.
- Square launched a new iPad app called Register that is aimed at being more capable to handle high volumes of sales and track analytics better than Square's first iPad app. The app works with both the Square dongle and Card Case. Square also announced that it's on track to process $4 billion worth of sales which is double what it processed in the fourth quarter of 2011.
- This is how security works in the wild west of the Internet. This weekend, developer Egor Homakov exploited a known vulnerability in Ruby on Rails that allowed him to gain administrator access to GitHub, meaning he could do whatever he wanted to all GitHub projects, including Ruby on Rails itself, Linux, and millions of others. All he did with his powers was post a funny comment. GitHub suspended Homakov, fixed the hole, and, after 'reviewing his activity,' reinstated him.
- The entire Internet is cheering and throwing ticker tape parades over Apple's App Store reaching its 25 billionth download over the weekend. And by the entire Internet, we mean one Chinese guy. Apple has awarded Chunli Fu of Qingdao, China a $10,000 iTunes Gift Card for downloading the app that put the marketplace over the mark. Fu downloaded Where's My Water? Free, a Disney Game.
- Think you have to choose between downloading games, or some streaming technology like OnLive? Well DARPA says you're wrong, and THEY invented the Internet! Numecent is rolling out a DARPA-derived"cloud paging" technology today. Rafe Needleman at CNET reports that among other things it will let you play big games over the Web more quickly than if you had to download them, and with better performance than if you're streaming them. Numecent is a virtual machine technology, but instead of downloading the whole "machine" it uses a network-based virtual memory manager that grabs just the parts of the VM it needs over the Web.
- ZDNet Korea has previously reported that the Samsung Galaxy S III is on track for an April launch. Not so fast, says Samsung on their Korean-language Twitter feed. In Korean they deny that an April release has been set in stone for the Galaxy S III and promise to post to Twitter, presumably in Korean, when they actual launch date is determined.
- Everybody hates pre-roll ads that make you sit through commercials before your video plays. But advertisers almost always insist on them so that viewers are sure to get their message? The solution? Solve Media will let you skip “pre-roll” commercials by typing a branding message into a text box. In their example, you can skip an ad for Toyota’s Camry by typing in “The Reinvented 2012 Camry", as long as you can type faster than the ad plays.
- Tomorrow 3/6 is Mass Effect 3 Release Day!
- On Tuesday 3/6 Pandora will release Q4 and full year fiscal 2012 results, stock price is down 15% since June IPO price
- I don't know if any of you heard about this, but Apple is having a press conference on Wednesday, March 7 and *I* hear they may announce a new iPad.
- A Sony Webcast called "PlayStation Vita Game Heaven" will reveal "unannounced Vita titles, upcoming releases, Vita services, as well as new information about in-release titles," on Sony's Japanese PlayStation Web site at 3 a.m. PT/7 am ET Friday March 9th.
- Nokia is discontinuing Ovi Share, that allows automatic uploads to services like FB and Flickr. Ovi Share web uploads will stop on March 13; and you'll have until May 30th to log in to your accounts and download everything, either in a single zip files or various smaller files.
"Guys, love the show! In episode 438 you were discussing AT&T's changed throttling plan. Something to consider... If 5% of users (who pay the same as the other 95%) use 50-80% of the data, AT&T might be better off in total by alienating some of those users so much they leave. If half of them leave, AT&T losses 2.5% of their revenue, but gains 25-40% of their data capacity back to sell to less demanding customers (who are then on tiered plans instead of unlimited plans). Sometimes ""firing"" your least profitable customers is a good thing.
Rich McAdams, Jr. President enGenius Consulting Group"
Everyone's saying that perhaps Apple are going to unveil a new Apple TV on Wednesday alongside the iPad 3. I think they might, but I don't think it's going to be what people are expecting.
I think Apple may have reimagined the Apple TV. What if the new Apple TV is nothing more than an app on the new IPad, that Airplays to a new HDMI dongle for your TV? Would that be the "simplest method ever"? Their accessories have been getting more sophisticated. <<Stop reading here if you want>> When the iPad 2 launched, it came alongside a HDMI adaptor that allowed screen mirroring. Now that Airplay has been such a success, why not make the iPad 3 the workhorse, and feed to an Always-On mini dongle type thing that is plugged into your HDMI 3 slot, instead of a set-top box that requires a separate remote and power unit.
What if the iPad 3 is the Apple TV 3?
Love the show, keep up the great work
Adam Roche in the United Kingdom
P.S: I'm probably wrong, but at least it's original thinking!"
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- Edited by: Jason
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