It looks like Microsoft’s Surface won’t be the only computer in the interactive touch-sensitive table market; Epson has recently announced their very own offering, the xDesk.
Aside from having an extremely cheesy name, the xDesk offers some pretty solid features for a machine of this caliber including a 52-inch, 1024x768 touch screen that can communicate with gadgets such as phones and cameras placed onto its surface, and the ability to recognize gesture recognition, allowing multiple users to drag around photos or draw. It’ll also transfer audio and video wirelessly though Bluetooth 2.1, but if you’d rather go the wired route and use FireWire or one of the five USB 2.0 ports, that works fine too.
Underneath the hood you’ll find a 2.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor, 1GB of DDR2 memory, a 250GB HDD and an ATI HD 4850 GPU. Though, as for pricing and availability, there’s still no word.
Also, if you’d like to see a video if it in action, be sure to click here.
The final version of Windows 7 is still several months away from being released, but don't expect Microsoft to stand idle. The software giant has already begun assembling a development team for the next-next version of Windows.
"For the upcoming version of Windows, new critical features are being worked on including cluster support and support for one way replication," Microsoft wrote in a job posting on its site. "The core engine is also being reworked to provide dramatic performance improvements. We will also soon be starting major improvements for Windows 8 where we will be including innovative features which will revolutionize file access in branch offices."
The general consensus on Windows 7 is that it runs and feels much more snappy than Vista, so it will be interesting to see what a reworked core engine with performance in mind can deliver in Windows 8. Don't fell like waiting to find out? Details on how you can apply to be part of the development are right here.
Why pay $399 for a netbook when you can get the same model for just $79? That's the question Radio Shack hopes netbook shoppers will be asking themselves, and are prepared to answer with Acer's AT&T 3G-equipped Aspire One. Of course there's a caveat, which comes in the form of a qualifying 2-year AT&T service agreement on a rate plan starting at $60/month.
In case you missed it the first time around, Acer's popular Aspire One comes with an 8.9-inch LED backlit LDC screen, Intel Atom CPU, 1GB of RAM, a 160GB hard drive, Windows XP, and everything else you'd expect in a basic netbook configuration. This is also the same netbook that previously sold for $99 with a service contract, with the latest discount coming in anticipation of Verizon's deal to sell the HP Mini 1000 for a discount.
Takeover talks between IBM and Sun appear to have come to an end for good, assuming stockholder approval for a $7.4 billion acquisition deal. But it's Oracle, and not IBM, who made the winning bid, and according to CNet, has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Sun common stock for $9.50 per share.
"We expect this acquisition to be accretive to Oracle's earnings by at least 15 cents on a non-GAAP basis in the first full year after closing," said Safra Catz, Oracle President. "We estimate that the acquired business will contribute over $1.5 billion to Oracle's non-GAAP operating profit in the first year, increasing to over $2 billion in the second year."
IBM had previously entered into negotiations with Sun, offering up a deal worth about $7 billion. But Sun refused the offer, in part because it felt the bid wasn't enough, but mostly the company was concerned IBM would bail if the potential deal resulted in an antitrust review.
The deal between Oracle and Sun is expected to close this summer, pending stockholder and regulatory approvals.
According to mobile security firm Trust Digital, you're at a real risk of falling prey to an SMS attack while you sleep. Dubbed the "Midnight Raid Attack," because it's mostly run at night, a hacker who has the right toolkits and know-how could send a malicious text message to your phone capable of firing up the web browser and navigating to a harmful website. Once there, the site downloads a dirty executable to your phone intended to steal your private data, said Trust Digital.
"This is a completely real threat," said Phillippe Winthrop, a director in the global wireless practice at Strategy Analytics. "We will see these attacks. It's a matter of time."
Another type of attack has a hacker sending a malicious SMS 'control message' over the GSM network to a victim's phone using a WiFi network, like you might be using at a coffee shop. The attack turns off SSL on the victim's phone, allowing the hacker to sniff your exposed traffic and steal your email credentials.
Trust Digital posted a pair of YouTube videos demonstrating the above attacks, which you can view here and here.
We're not sure if this is just an excuse to dress up as pirates and wave the Jolly Roger in a public setting (and admit it, you've wanted to do this since the first time you rode Disneyland's Pirates of the Caribbean ride as a child), but a band of Swedish 'pirates' marched in protest of the Stockholm district court scalawags who issued a guilty verdict in the Pirate Bay trial. Pirate Bay's founders -- Gottfrid Svartholm Warg, Peter Sunde, Fredrik Neij and Carl Lundstrom -- were each sentenced to walk the plank one year in jail and ordered to be pay 30 million kronor ($3.6 million) in damages to several major media companies following the ruling on Friday.
Hundreds of protesters took to the streets led by Sweden's Pirate Party, a political organization which supports free file sharing for noncommercial use, many of which could be seen wearing bandannas and other pirate-attire. The party said it's membership shot up 20 percent to about 20,000 after the verdict was announced.
"The establishment and the politicians have delcared war against our whole generation," said Rickard Falkvinge, party Chairman and founder.
While unconfirmed, we hear that several court officials, fearful the protest might turn physical, made a clean getaway after someone distracted the crowd by shouting out, "Look behind you, a three-headed monkey!"
Earlier this month, we caught wind (no pun intended, MSI) of Samsung's upcoming netbook, the N120. Details were scarce at the time, with only half-baked preliminary e-tailer product pages to go off of, but that's no longer the case. Amazon (and others) are now selling the N120 that Samsung has been surprisingly quiet about.
Available in both black (N120-12GBK) and white (N120-12GW) trim, the new 10.1-inch netbook model keeps it simple (read: boring) with an Intel Atom N270 (1.6GHz, 533MHz frontside bus, 512KB L2 cache) processor on an Intel 945GSE chipset, integrated Intel GMA950 graphics, a 160GB/5400RPM hard drive, 1GB of DDR2-667 memory, WiFi, Bluetooth, 3 USB 2.0 ports, 3-in-1 memory card reader, 1.3MP webcam, Windows XP, and a handful of other features we've now seen a thousand times before.
We've spotted several vendors selling the N120 for around $465.
The pirate bay is taking on water at a frantic pace, and while an appeal in the trial is still likely, odds are pretty good that site may soon be brought down once and for all through a court injunction. Truth is though; the Pirate Bay brought this down on themselves. By picking up the torch that Napster and Kazaa dropped, they painted a huge bulls eye on their chest and blatantly taunted the movie and music industry by posting take down notices on the site, a sign of open defiance.
Though they may soon pay the price for these actions, it remains to be seen who the movie and music industry would consider to be “next on the list”. Tracker sites like Mininova, isoHunt, and Demonoid come to mind, but one searching tool rules them all, Google. Type any movie or TV show into Google followed by the word “torrent” and every tracking site, including many lesser known domains; spill their results for the world to see. In fact according to Google Trends, searches for the term “wolverine torrent” quadrupled after the movie was leaked onto peer-to-peer networks.
Google claims they are quick to remove offending content, but it’s a never ending battle. When one torrent link dies, dozens more take their place.
Can Google be held legally liable for this? It’s hard to say but with the Pirate Bay gone, we may soon find out! What do you think?
We have spent a lot of time speculating about who would be the US’s first CTO. Heck, even Intel’s CTO has chimed in on the issue. But when all the smoke cleared, Obama had chosen Aneesh Chopra, currently Virginia’s secretary of technology to fill the new and very high profile national position. Working side by side with chief information officer, Vivek Kundra, Chopra will be responsible for setting technology policy within government, and help to find ways to improve security while lowering costs.
Vivek Kundra was widely speculated to be a strong contender for the position, but so were several other Silicon Valley hopefuls. The announcement of Chopra as CTO puts to rest months of speculation, and will allow him to get down to business. As always, critics of the decision are lining up, but for the most part many respected industry leaders are coming out in favor of Obama’s decision.
According to Gary Shapiro, president and CEO of the Consumer Electronics Association, “He is an excellent selection”. “He served proficiently in Virginia as Secretary of Technology and also has a strong background in the private sector advising the health care industry on technology management issues," he said in a statement. "He will bring to the position real world technology and public policy experience."
Does this mean Obama is going to hand over the Internet off switch? What do you think of the new CTO?
We’ve all seen the laptop hunters in action over the past several weeks and though you may not have noticed it at first, these ads represent a significant shift in tactics. The new marketing campaign by Microsoft takes a much less passive aggressive stance than in the past, and for the first time, charges head on into their primary competitor. In the previous campaign which featured a diverse group of actors claiming to be PC’s, Apple is never specifically mentioned, but clearly if you’re not a Mac you’re a PC right?
Microsoft’s strategy up to this point has been to ignore Apple completely, and to never give them the satisfaction of being acknowledged publically as a valid alternative to Windows. This new campaign is much less subtle about the value of a PC when compared to a Mac, and it is not surprising that they have invoked a response from Apple as a result.
According to an Apple spokesman “The one thing that both Apple and Microsoft can agree on is that everyone thinks the Mac is cool. With its great designs and advanced software, nothing matches it at any price." So close, yet so far”. Certain publications such as BusinessWeek would also have us believe that Anti Virus software and Geek Squad visits will make up the price difference between a $699 HP & a $2,800 Mac, but we don’t buy that argument either. One thing is certain however; we can likely expect Apple’s next ad campaign to respond in kind, making this the start of a very interesting and public war between the two rivals.