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[H] Enthusiast Archives: August 2012Archive Listing

Friday August 31, 2012

Japan Mulls '911' Emergency Calls from Social Networks

Japan’s disaster management officials are considering alternative solutions to emergency calls in natural disasters. A panel met in Tokyo for preliminary talks on the possible use of alternative web-based solutions such as Twitter, Yahoo, local chat lines and social networks.

But during large-scale natural disasters, such as the massive earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan's east coast last year, voice networks often clog up under the dual strain of damaged infrastructure and a sudden surge of lengthy voice calls


Microsoft Opens Registration For Imagine Cup 2013

On Thursday, Microsoft opened registration for the 11th annual Image Cup open to all students 16 and above. The competition has been revised from strictly software design to three core areas: World Citizenship, Games and Innovation. The prize has also changed this year, doubling to $300k.

In addition to the core competitions, students can also compete in a number of online challenges focused on specific technologies and platforms, including Windows 8, Windows Azure and Windows Phone.


HBO Cuts Cord in Nordic Countries with Video Service

HBO has announced that the cable service will no longer be cable-centric….at least in four Nordic countries. HBO will be available to customers without subscribing to cable or satellite TV through Parsifal International’s online-only video channel. The rest of the world will have to not watch and wait to see if this trend will spread. This just goes to prove some people are still scared of Vikings. big grin

HBO Nordic will cost $12.50 a month and gives subscribers access to all seasons of hit shows like Boardwalk Empire, Game of Thrones and True Blood, as well as older shows like The Wire and full-length movies


MakerPlane Aims to Create the First Open Source Aircraft

Do you want to fly? Do you want your own airplane, but you are a bit short on cash? Are you good with following directions and work well with your hands? John Nicol, founder of MakerPlane wants to put you in the pilot’s seat as cheaply and easily as possibly by turning to open source design plans and modular digital manufacturing processes. Pilot’s license not included. big grin


Revel: Programming the Sense of Touch

From the Disney Research Labs, new research is being conducted on tactile perception. The new studies are allowing tactile sensing to be transferred from almost any object to touch screens by way of a process known as ‘Reverse Electrovibration’.


Forty Games Headed to the Windows 8 Xbox App

Microsoft is making good on the promise made to potential Windows 8 users last year and that promise was Xbox integration would be have a big part in the new operating system. The titles of the 40 games are already listed for Windows 8 in the Xbox Live Games App and more will be added in the future.

Microsoft has been promising Xbox would be a big part of Windows 8 ever since announcing Windows 8-Xbox integration during E3 2011. The new Xbox games in Windows 8 will feature Xbox Achievements, leaderboards, as well as some multiplayer games.


Zynga Hires a New Executive to Lead Online Gambling

Zynga CEO Mark Pincus has said that the company will begin real-money gaming in international markets during the first half of 2013. To facilitate the foray into online gambling, Zynga has hired former Senior Vice President of 888 Holdings, Maytal Ginzburg, to oversee the social gaming service’s new business endeavor.

The hire is important for the Facebook games maker because it shows that while a number of executives have decided to leave, it can still recruit talent at a very high level.


Google Chrome 21.0.1180.89 Released

Google has released a new version of Chrome to update and address numerous vulnerabilities, bug fixes and stability issues. Also in this version is the ‘getUserMedia’ API which permits access to system camera and microphone without a separate App. This version is good on Windows, Linux and Mac OS.

Google Chrome 21 also includes deeper Google Cloud Print integration, expanded support for gamepads, and support for high-resolution Mac Retina screens.


Tokyo Court Rejects Apple Patent Claim Against Samsung

Finally some good news for Samsung: The Tokyo courts sided with Samsung and ruled that the company did not infringe on an Apple patent concerning music and video syncing and that the two technologies used were not the same.

Apple will have 30 days to appeal this latest Japan ruling. But this may only be the beginning of the struggle between the two companies in Japan.


Facebook Advertisers to Use Phone, User ID, e-Mail for Ads

Facebook is trying out a new advertising function which allows advertisers access to pertinent information which would determine buyer preference. The information that will be used is from user-provided files including phone numbers, email addresses, user ID’s and any other contact information that may prove useful for targeted advertisements.

This feature allows advertisers a powerful new level of targeting at a time when the efficacy of Facebook’s advertisements is under scrutiny. The option opens the door to new, highly specific advertisements


Amazon Has Sights Set on Double-Sided Tablet Device

Amazon has received a patent on a two-sided tablet joining e-ink and LCD display on opposite sides. Each side of the tablet would have touch sensitivity and front and rear facing cameras to determine screen identification. The device could be used with both screens in unison to make it easier to view certain aspects of a single item, such as web page.

The patent approval comes just days before the company is planning a press event in Los Angeles on Sept. 6, where the company is likely gearing up to launch its next-generation Kindle e-reader and Kindle Fire tablet devices.


Aliens: Colonial Marines Trailer Goes Multiplayer

There’s more teasing going on with the Colonial Marines than at last year’s junior prom. big grin At last we see the light at the end of the tunnel for the release of Aliens: Colonial Marines, which is now set for February 12th, 2013. To keep gamers interest up, Gearbox/Sega is still rolling out teaser trailers like this "Escape". Colonial Marines will be available on PS3, Xbox and PC platforms.