Technology News

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Robots Gearing Up to Join Ebola Front Lines

Oct 24, 2014 1:00 pm

The White House and roboticists have set Nov. 7 to get together in a workshop to explore ways of using robots to help in the battle against Ebola. The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy will cohost the workshop on safety robotics for Ebola workers, with Texas A&M University's... [more]

Hacker gets prison for cyberattack stealing $9.4M

Oct 24, 2014 12:51 pm

An Estonian man who pleaded guilty to orchestrating a 2008 cyberattack on a credit card processing company that enabled hackers to steal $9.4 million has been sentenced to 11 years in prison by a federal judge in Atlanta. [more]

Magic Leap moves beyond older lines of VR

Oct 24, 2014 12:05 pm

Two messages from Magic Leap: Most of us know that a world with dragons and unicorns, elves and fairies is just a better world. The other message: Technology can be mindboggingly awesome. When the two messages combine, the company's aura becomes evident as movers in newer realms of augmented... [more]

Alan Eustace Jumps From Stratosphere, Breaking Felix Baumgartner’s World Record

Oct 24, 2014 11:45 am

A helium-filled balloon lifted Mr. Eustace, a Google executive, to 135,908 feet. Fifteen minutes after he cut himself loose using a small explosive device, he was on the ground. [more]

Beyond GoPro: Skiers and snowboarders can measure everything with apps, hardware

Oct 24, 2014 11:30 am

At the end of a long day on the slopes, there's only one reward as sweet as a cold beer and a fireplace to warm your toes - recounting your epic moves through the powder. [more]

Q&A: Shining a Light on Nosy Apps

Oct 24, 2014 11:19 am

Plus, creating a fund-raising page on Facebook. [more]

NBCUniversal settles with unpaid interns for $6.4M

Oct 24, 2014 11:09 am

NBCUniversal will pay $6.4 million to settle a class action lawsuit brought by unpaid interns who worked on "Saturday Night Live" and other shows who claim they are owed wages, according to court documents. [more]

New social network for teenagers experiences a growth spurt

Oct 24, 2014 11:00 am

The millionaire creator of a Facebook competitor for teenagers, Pascal Lorne needed, well, teenagers. [more]

Team infuses science into 'Minecraft' modification

Oct 24, 2014 10:57 am

The 3-D world of the popular "Minecraft" video game just became more entertaining, perilous and educational, thanks to a comprehensive code modification kit, "Polycraft World," created by University of Texas at Dallas professors, students and alumni. [more]

Mozilla plans to ship Lightning add-on with Thunderbird 38 email client

Oct 24, 2014 10:57 am

Thunderbird is the main email client that I use on all desktop systems. There are plenty of reasons for that, from full control over all emails to better privacy and options to load add-ons that improve the functionality of the client. One of the most popular add-ons for Thunderbird is the... [more]

States ascend into the cloud

Oct 24, 2014 10:30 am

Seven years ago, the state of Delaware started moving computer servers out of closets and from under workers' desks to create a consolidated data center and a virtual computing climate. [more]

Ambitious EU targets for renewable energies make economic sense

Oct 24, 2014 10:18 am

The European heads of governments are currently in Brussels negotiating the targets for the European climate and energy policy for the year 2030. There seems to be a fundamental consensus for tightening the binding climate target. Yet, there are still significant differences of opinion as to the... [more]

Li-ion batteries contain toxic halogens, but environmentally friendly alternatives exist

Oct 24, 2014 10:13 am

Physics researchers at Virginia Commonwealth University have discovered that most of the electrolytes used in lithium-ion batteries—commonly found in consumer electronic devices—are superhalogens, and that the vast majority of these electrolytes contain toxic halogens. [more]

Can Whisper, an app for anonymous confessions, protect users' identities?

Oct 24, 2014 10:10 am

Can an app that people anonymously share confessions on, some of which become fodder for news stories, protect the users' identities? That's the issue surrounding Whisper this week. [more]

Bits Blog: Malicious Ebola-Themed Emails Are on the Rise

Oct 24, 2014 10:04 am

Criminals are attempting to install malicious programs on computers using false Ebola advisories as bait. [more]

Apple to open 25 new stores in China in the next two years

Oct 24, 2014 9:20 am

Tim Cook is in China this week, where he announced plans to open 25 new Apple stores in its Greater China region in the next two years. [more]

Yelp adds hotel and winery bookings with new partnerships

Oct 24, 2014 9:10 am

Travelers often turn to Yelp to check out consumer reviews of hotels before they go on vacation, and now they can book a room directly through its site and app thanks to a partnership with startup Hipmunk. [more]

Powerful new software plug-in detects bugs in spreadsheets

Oct 24, 2014 9:09 am

An effective new data-debugging software tool dubbed "CheckCell" was released to the public this week in a presentation by University of Massachusetts Amherst computer science doctoral student Daniel Barowy. He spoke at the premier international computer programming language design conference... [more]

Tomorrow's tablets? Look, no hands

Oct 24, 2014 8:50 am

Engineers in a suburban Chicago office complex have designed a new microphone that they say will be key to the future of smartphone and tablet technology because it gives consumers the ability to operate hand-held devices without touching them. [more]

Microsoft's Garage becomes an incubator of consumer apps

Oct 24, 2014 8:50 am

For five years now, The Garage has served as Microsoft's incubator for employees' passion projects, an internal community of engineers, designers, hardware tinkerers and others from all different parts of the company who work on their own or with others on pet projects, some of which could... [more]

Microsoft drops Nokia name from smartphones

Oct 24, 2014 8:30 am

Microsoft said Friday it was dropping the Nokia name from its Lumia smartphones, rebranding following the acquisition earlier this year of the Finnish group's handset division. [more]

Amazon's loss makes holidays a question mark

Oct 24, 2014 8:12 am

Amazon's trademark smile icon is becoming more of a grimace. The world's largest online retailer reported a wider third-quarter loss than analysts expected and gave a disappointing holiday forecast. [more]

Google's Inbox: Beginning of the End of Email as We Know It?

Oct 24, 2014 8:05 am

Google on Wednesday introduced Inbox, a free mobile app that aims to separate the email wheat from the chaff. It's currently available to Android and iPhone users on an invitation-only basis. The software is aimed at managing email on small screens, although once set up and running on a phone, it... [more]

Students win challenge for real-time traffic app

Oct 24, 2014 7:59 am

Three University of Texas at Arlington Computer Science and Engineering students have won a $10,000 prize in the NTx Apps Challenge for a smart traffic light network that adjusts traffic light schedules to make traffic flow more efficient. [more]

Queen sends first tweet, signed 'Elizabeth R'

Oct 24, 2014 6:43 am

Queen Elizabeth II has sent her first tweet—and she's signed it "Elizabeth R." [more]

New oscillator for low-power implantable transcievers

Oct 24, 2014 6:22 am

Arash Moradi and Mohamad Sawan from Polytechnique Montreal in Canada discuss their new low-power VCO design for medical implants. This oscillator was implemented to provide the frequency deviation of frequency-shift-keying (FSK) modulation in implantable radio-frequency (RF) transceivers. [more]

Researchers increase the switching contrast of an all-optical flip-flop

Oct 24, 2014 6:10 am

Researchers at the Rochester Institute of Technology in New York have increased the switching contrast of a particular kind of all-optical flip-flop by 28 dB, resulting in a switching contrast of 36.6 dB. This could provide a huge leap in the performances of a range of photonic techniques,... [more]

Should the Japanese give nuclear power another chance?

Oct 24, 2014 6:10 am

On September 9, 2014, the Japan Times reported an increasing number of suicides coming from the survivors of the March 2011 disaster. In Minami Soma Hospital, which is located 23 km away from the power plant, the number of patients experiencing stress has also increased since the disaster. What's... [more]

Evaluating powerful batteries for modular grid energy storage

Oct 24, 2014 5:57 am

Sandia National Laboratories has begun lab-based characterization of TransPower's GridSaver, the largest grid energy storage system analyzed at Sandia's Energy Storage Test Pad in Albuquerque, N.M. [more]

Online anonymity isn't as easy as the firms offering privacy apps want you to think

Oct 24, 2014 5:07 am

In a post-Snowden world, anonymity is what people want online. Smartphone apps offering anonymous messaging are popping up everywhere – Secret, Whisper and now Yik Yak. The latest additions to privacy-protecting technology, they claim to provide anonymous, location-based confession, expression,... [more]

Time-lapse shows solar eclipse

Oct 24, 2014 4:13 am

Time-lapse video shows the solar eclipse over Denver on October 23, 2014. [more]

Ericsson profit down 10 pct despite higher sales

Oct 24, 2014 3:51 am

Wireless equipment maker Ericsson says its third-quarter earnings slumped 10 percent despite higher sales due to increased operating costs and negative effects from currency hedging. [more]

D-Vasive alerts you when Android features such as the microphone get enabled

Oct 24, 2014 3:06 am

Whenever you install an application on an Android device a list of permissions that it requests is displayed to you first. It is necessary to agree to those permissions to install the app. While that is true for apps that users install directly, information about system apps and pre-installed... [more]

UK wind power share shows record rise

Oct 24, 2014 2:57 am

The United Kingdom wind power production has been enjoying an upward trajectory, and on Tuesday wind power achieved a significant energy production milestone, reported Brooks Hays for UPI. High winds from Hurricane Gonzalo were the force behind wind turbines outproducing nuclear power plants on... [more]

California startup unveils gun technology for cops

Oct 24, 2014 2:53 am

A Silicon Valley startup has developed technology to let dispatchers know when a police officer's weapon has been fired. [more]

Glass maker deals to exit Apple, Arizona plant

Oct 24, 2014 1:20 am

Nearly 2,000 furnaces installed in a factory to make synthetic sapphire glass for Apple Inc. will be removed and sold under a deal between the tech giant and the company that had been gearing up to produce huge amounts of the product for use in Apple's products. [more]

Why I won’t be using Google’s Inbox

Oct 24, 2014 12:21 am

Inbox is a new email service by Google that is currently being available on an invite-only basis. It is available as an application for Android and iOS, and also as a web service. You can sign in using your Google account after you have received the invite. While it is not tied to Gmail, it... [more]

Global boom in hydropower expected this decade

Oct 23, 2014 11:00 pm

An unprecedented boom in hydropower dam construction is underway, primarily in developing countries and emerging economies. While this is expected to double the global electricity production from hydropower, it could reduce the number of our last remaining large free-flowing rivers by about 20%... [more]

New York City Police to Be Equipped With Smartphones and Tablets

Oct 23, 2014 10:29 pm

A program will distribute 41,000 devices across the police department; each of its 35,000 officers will receive a hand-held devices and 6,000 tablets will be installed in police cars. [more]

Voice Recognition for the Internet of Things

Oct 23, 2014 10:00 pm

With natural-language processing aided by crowdsourced data, aims to make smartphones, wearables, and drones heed your call.It’s not unusual to find yourself talking to an uncoöperative appliance or gadget. Soon, though, it could soon be more common for those devices to actually pay... [more]

Donald A. Pels, Media Executive and Philanthropist, Dies at 86

Oct 23, 2014 9:38 pm

Mr. Pels, whose early investment in cellphone networks paid off for his company and for himself, had become a major philanthropist in his later years. [more]

Calculate Linux Provides Consistency by Design

Oct 23, 2014 8:07 pm

Calculate Linux 14 is a distro designed with home and SMB users in mind. It is optimized for rapid deployment in corporate environments as well. Calculate gives users something no other Linux distro offers. The Xfce desktop session is customized to imitate the look of the KDE desktop environment.... [more]

Advertising: A Tech Twist on Home for the Holidays

Oct 23, 2014 6:22 pm

The growth of marketing efforts for connected-home items is fueled by consumers’ appetite for new technology. [more]

Microsoft's expanding cloud platform shines brightly

Oct 23, 2014 4:50 pm

At a small gathering in San Francisco for reporters and analysts earlier this week, Microsoft announced a number of new cloud products and services. [more]

Review: Apple Pay is great, at stores that accept it

Oct 23, 2014 4:30 pm

When Apple Pay launched Monday, my editors decided I needed to go shopping. [more]

Apple's secrets may be revealed through obscure bankruptcy case

Oct 23, 2014 4:10 pm

The bankruptcy of a key Apple supplier may shine a bright light on sensitive business details the personal electronics giant fights to keep out of the public eye. [more]

Space Explorers Hole Up in Hawaii to Simulate Life on Mars

Oct 23, 2014 3:54 pm

The third in a series of four simulated missions to Mars planned by NASA kicked off last week at a remote site on the Hawaiian island of Mauna Loa. A six-person team, comprising the Hawai'i Space Exploration Analog and Simulation 3 mission, is inhabiting a dome for an eight-month study of the... [more]

Facebook brings back the anonymous chatroom

Oct 23, 2014 3:25 pm

Remember in the late '90s when you would kill time in AOL and IRC chatrooms or post on Usenet? You'd strike up conversations with strangers about subjects you were all interested in, say "The X-Files," container gardening or The Fugees. [more]

'Cloud' lifts Microsoft earnings above expectations

Oct 23, 2014 3:22 pm

Microsoft on Thursday reported quarterly profits ahead of most expectations, as revenues got a boost from its Xbox consoles and Internet "cloud" services for enterprises. [more]

Oculus Rift users to see Moon live through robot

Oct 23, 2014 3:22 pm

A group from Carnegie Mellon wants to send a robot to the Moon to beam live pictures of the Moon to Oculus Rift headset users, reported technology reporter Jane Wakefield of the BBC. Andy the robot is intended to swing into action as a robot on a mission to transform education about space. The... [more]

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