Nvidia Project Shield Console Out Next Month

Nvidia Project Shield Console Out Next Month

There’s a new kid on the block of handheld consoles, but this one has a whole range of features that you can’t find in any of its counterparts. The Nvidia Project Shield, first unveiled at CES, will be officially out next month and will sell for $349.
The price may be a bit steep for a handheld console. For instance, PlayStation Vita from Sony is about $100 cheaper and Nintendo’s handheld device 3DS XL is almost 50 percent cheaper. But the Shield relies on technology and features that Nvidia hopes will make fans feel that it is worth spending that much money.

First of all, the Shield console is equipped with Nvidia’s pride and joy when it comes to mobile
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NASA to Print 3D Food

Systems and Material Research Corporation (SMRC) in Austin Texas have been given a grant of $125,000 to develop 3D printed food for astronauts.
You could ask why, what’s wrong with dehydrated mac and cheese? Well there are numerous challenges to feeding and hydrating the residents of somewhere like the International Space Station.
For one, there is limited space. There are also no refrigeration facilities. Currently shuttles are stocked with enough food to last the full length of the mission, plus extra should they encounter any emergencies. This is fine for short missions but it becomes more of an issue when the shuttle will be in orbit long term.

food replicator

*Data explains how the food replicator works to L.Q. “Sonny” Clemonds. Someone from NASA must have been taking notes.

The challenge for SMRC is to produce a prototype that can “synthesise” healthy and tasty food that will beat the dehydrated meals currently eaten by the astronauts. The plan is to use a combination of 3d printing, which will provide macronutrients (carbohydrates, protein and fat needed for calories or energy) and inkjet printing, which will provide the flavour, smell and micronutrients (vitamins and minerals).
In order to make sure the food actually tastes and smells of what it is supposed to be, SMRC are also working along with the food science program at North Carolina State University. Who knows maybe it will receive a Michelin Star!
If this works, then there will be no need to take along full pre-packed meals. Instead they will be able to take just generic or basic ingredients which can then be printed into a meal.
So, squid ink pasta anyone?
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With Xbox One, Microsoft Emphasizes TV over Games

From beneath gray skies, working a boisterous audience packed into a giant tent on its Redmond, Wash. campus, Microsoft this afternoon took the wraps off its third Xbox, dubbed Xbox One. But gamers tuning in to watch the live-stream event only caught glimpses of vaguely better-looking in-game footage, and then not until the presentation’s finale. Instead, Microsoft and its partners chose to spend most of the presentation talking about the future of TV-related entertainment as well as Xbox One’s much-refined voice command-driven interface.
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Top 5 iOS 7 Rumors

Whenever the time for a new iOS version comes near, pundits and average users alike run around like headless chickens, declaring and wishing for features that are needed and wanted. History has taught us that where there is smoke, there is fire; so when the inevitable slew of iOS rumors hit the Internet, you can say that it’s not a complete waste of your time to keep track of them. There is, of course, the argument that we will get what Apple decides to give us anyway, but where’s the fun in merely sitting back and letting the Internet do its thing without being more than an observer?
Top 5 iOS 7 Rumors
June is almost here, which brings us the the already sold-out WWDC. That means we’re going to – probably – hear the official word on Apple’s latest mobile OS (among other things such as, maybe, the iPad 5). Not being one to pass up on speculating, let me share with you some the top 5 iOS 7 rumors so far.

1. Expect delay
What’s new, really? We cannot ignore the fact that with many tech releases – and not only with Apple – delays are part of the package. What could very well be the highlight of the iOS 7 rumors is this expected delay, which is mainly credited to Jony Ive’s design overhaul. Having seen what Ive has done over the years, though, the chances are that the result will be worth the wait. Oh, and there’s the tiny detail of un-Forstalling iOS.

ios 7 rumors

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Google All Access Launched: Unlimited Music Streaming

The online radio streaming service niche does not leave much room for newcomers, but if the newcomer has big a name as Google, then the picture suddenly changes. Google has been known to enter markets that are already crowded, and with its propensity for innovation, it has also been known to make a big splash wherever it goes. This week, the online radio streaming service niche has been subjected to some rocking and rolling, thanks to the news that Google is readying its Spotify competitor.

Google All Access: Unlimited Music Streaming

We know that Spotify is THE name in the niche, but it is so like Google to take on the existing leader. Not only does Google bring its vast resources with it, the news is that the online giant has teamed up with music icons such as Sony and Universal. That ought to make the Spotify big boys think long and hard about what to do.
The Verge recently published an exclusive announcing that the Universal Music Group and Sony Music Entertainment have signed deals – separately – with Google. This is in line with the new music service being hailed as the Spotify competitor.
No freebies
One thing that might concern some people is that Google’s music streaming service will be all about subscription and that there will be no free tier available. While there are no details about the cost of
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Windows 8 Sales Reach 100M Licenses

 Windows 8 has been an enigma from the time of its release. Backed by probably the biggest marketing campaign ever for an operating system, Windows 8 has not managed to take the market by storm. Rather, its progress has been slow and gradual. Though Microsoft has tried its best to hype up every small achievement, the latest version of their operating system has received its fair share of criticism. Yet, there is one piece of news which will put a smile on the face of Windows proponents who have had to work very hard to defend their beloved OS.

Windows 8 Sales Reach 100M Licenses

On Monday, Microsoft announced Windows 8 had crossed the 100 million license mark. If you go by
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Samsung To Launch 5G By 2020, Hits Speeds Of 1Gbps In Tests

samsung-logoSamsung Electronics has developed core technology that will allow it to deliver high-speed 5G wireless data connections to consumers by 2020, the company announced today. The system allows data transmission up to several hundred times faster than current 4G networks.
5G mobile communications technology is the next generation of 4G LTE networks tech and can offer data transmission speeds of up to several tens of Gbps per base station. Once 5G networks are commercialized, they will allow users to transmit massive data files, including UHD movies and remote medical services, “practically wihtout limitation,” Samsung claims.
4G connections have gradually become available to consumers around the world since 2008, but many countries, including China, are still working toward launching their LTE networks. Samsung says, however, that its new adaptive array transceiver technology overcomes the limitations that millimeter-wave bands had when transmitting data over long distances. It transmits data in the millimeter-wave band at a frequency of 28 GHz at a speed of up to 1.056 Gbps to a distance of up to 2 kilometers.
“The millimeter-wave band is the most effective solution to recent surges in wireless Internet usage. Samsung’s recent success in developing the adaptive array transceiver technology has brought us one step closer to the commercialization of 5G mobile communications in the millimeter-wave bands,” said Samsung executive vice president and head of digital medial and communication R&D ChangYeong Kim.
Samsung isn’t the only company to announce that it has developed 5G core tech. In February, NTT DoCoMo confirmed that it had successfully conducted a 10Gbps wireless test.
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Source Code for Linux Kernel Used in Google Glass Released

Source Code for Linux Kernel Used in Google Glass Released

The highly hyped Google Glass has not yet been released to the masses, yet there is nothing more talked about or anticipated eagerly by fans of the wearable technology field. The high anticipation reached gratuitous levels when the Google Glass team released the Linux Kernel source code that was applied and utilized in the Android based device. Available on the website, code.google.com, the code is available for developers and other users who had access to the first batch of the Google Glass prototype.

Although the Linux Kernel code has been released on Google’s own servers, it is believed that it will soon be moved and housed on a git server. Google itself can be quoted on this matter, stating that  

“This is unlikely to be the permanent home for the kernel source, it should be pushed into git next to all other Android kernel source releases relatively soon.”

However, there are a few things to be noted and paid attention to in this scenario. One main overlooked feature is that the release of the Linux Kernel source code in no way indicates that all of the source code utilized or linked with Google Glass has been made available. Android code is usually broken down into two parts and each part is released slowly. Nonetheless, this ensures that no variations or new glasses can be made available in the market based on the Linux Kernel source code alone.
In the meantime, although the Linux Kernel has been released, it remains uncertain whether Google will be releasing the remaining section of the code or not although many developers think it is possible for the second half of the code to be released soon. Google also indulged and delighted many developers by allowing them to tinker with Google through rooting or hacking into it and manipulating the device to test what it’s capable of.
However, this did lead to confusion in the tabloids owing to the fact that many developers claimed that it was fairly easy to root into Google Glass which led to many people speculating and questioning the security measures applied on the device. Google was quick to quench all rumors by claiming that they had deliberately left the device root-able for developers.
This fact is lent more credibility when one realizes that Google also took the time to make a “fast-boot OEM unlock” available for anyone interested in rooting the device. While the issue still remains highly debatable over who actually rooted the device and who took a shortcut with the help of the code provided, it is clearly undeniable that Google Glass was deliberately left vulnerable for the sake of the developers.

Stephen Lau, an engineer of Google is quoted as saying, “Not to bring anybody down… but seriously… we intentionally left the device unlocked so you guys could hack it and do crazy, fun shit with it. I mean, FFS, you paid $1500 for it… go to town on it. Show me something cool.”
Either way, the response towards the release of the Linux Kernel source code created much anticipation and excitement for the Google Glass.
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Microsoft Working On $99 Set-Top Box

Microsoft Working On $99 Set-Top Box

Microsoft is prepping a set-top box along the lines of Apple TV, Roku, and WD Live.
The new rumor claims that Xbox Live customers will be able to sign into their accounts on the box and then use apps and view streaming videos.
Essentially the streaming content box would bring the non-gaming aspects of the Xbox 360 game console to a users TV with relatively-cheap pricing.

The Wall Street Journal claims that Microsoft is aiming for a device along the lines of the Apple TV. The inside source says Microsoft is planning various versions of the device. Among those different versions will be one box that offers Kinect-style motion controls.
While new consoles from Microsoft could be useful for non-gamers, the introduction of the Xbox 720 could push down Xbox 360 pricing to the point where Microsoft decides to shelve the set-top box.
There is a lot of competition in the stand-alone streaming box sector but Microsoft already controls the streaming accounts for millions of users. If nothing else Xbox Live customers could find the device useful for second set connectivity in their homes and while traveling.
Microsoft could soon be joined by Amazon which is believed to be working on a streaming box of its own. Amazon is already in the streaming game with the Amazon Prime streaming platform which includes Instant Video and Prime Instant Video.
Microsoft will debut the new Xbox gaming console on May 21 but it is highly unlikely that the new set-top box prototypes will be revealed at that time.
With the Sony PS4 debuting before Christmas and Nintendo pushing the Wii U a new toy from Microsoft is nothing else could be a great marketing tool for set-top branding.
Would you be willing to spend $99 to acquire a Microsoft Xbox Live streaming set-top box?
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Artificial Smart Skin as Sensitive as the Real Thing

Artificial Smart Skin as Sensitive as the Real Thing

Scientists have developed an experimental array dubbed smart skin, which has the same touch sensitivity as real human skin. The technology could be used for the development of improved prosthetics and could also help give future robots a better sense of touch.
The array developed by a joint U.S. Chinese team at the Georgia Institute of technology is based on a technique called mechanical agitation. More specifically, the smart skin is equipped with about 8,000 touch-sensitive transistors also known as taxels. When mechanically agitated, the transistors generate a piezoelectric signal, meaning that they emit electricity when under mechanical strain.
Each of these taxels is made of around 1,500 zinc oxide nanowires. The nanowires are connected to electrodes through a thin gold layer, which allows the array to “feel” any changes in pressure. The arrays even have the level of sensitivity required to pick up on pressure changes as low as 10 kilopascals, the same value that human skin is able to detect as well.
The technology allows any motion to be translated to control signals, making artificial skin smarter and more similar to human skin, able to feel even lighter touch, lead researcher Zhong Lin Wang explained.
The Georgia Tech team’s discovery is a major breakthrough in this field of research, as scientists have been attempting to mimic the sense of touch electronically for quite some time. The new technology can have multiple applications in areas such as robotics, prosthetics development, human-computer interfaces and many others.
The discovery may even be used for defense purposes and to increase security, although it is yet unclear in what manner. The military is nonetheless interested, as some of the main funders of the project are the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency of the American Department of Defense and the U.S. Air Force. Other branches of government such as the U.S. Department of Energy are involved as well. The research was also backed by the National Science foundation and the Chinese Academy of Sciences.
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Linux Raring Ringtail – What’s ‘New’?

Linux Raring Ringtail - What’s ‘New’?

The new Linux Ubuntu 13.04 is primed for release. Called the ‘Raring Ringtail’, the distribution comes with a host of new features, mostly building on what you got from its previous LTS (long term service) version. Among the most notable additions is enhanced social media integration. If you are thinking about using Raring Ringtail, it would be a good idea for you to check what it has to offer before you download it.


Compatible with Social Media

Right off the bat, the Raring Ringtail is more compatible with social media than its previous versions. This comes via the new features that have been added to Ubuntu’s Online Accounts interface. You can not only add accounts, but also select the apps on your computer you want to provide access to your social media accounts. For instance, it is now quite possible for you to limit Empathy from accessing your Facebook account. Moreover, you can easily view notifications and status updates.

Managing Browser Windows

This is one feature that works best in Mozilla Firefox. Sometimes, you have multiple windows of the same browser open and it becomes difficult to manage them. Now, you simply need to right-click where the Firefox icon appears on your desktop. There, you will be able to view and select the specific window you want to view. Also, Workspaces has been disabled, in the sense that it does not turn on automatically. Rather, you have to go into the Settings and turn it on if you want to use it.

Viewing Your Social Photos

The Unity dashboard also presents your social photos in a better and improved way. Now, you can easily access the photos you have saved on Shotwell from your Facebook or any other account by clicking on the Photo lens provided on the Unity Dash. Furthermore, you can view the images on your social accounts, the ones you have added to Ubuntu’s Online Accounts.

Better Menus

One of the subtler changes is the better menus that have been provided for file synchronization and Bluetooth. You can now perform file functions, like saving a file or moving it with a single click. Same goes for your Bluetooth functionality. You only need to click on the switch once to turn it on or off.
Apart from these new features, additions and changes, the Unity desktop environment has improved significantly. You don’t have to wait as long as you had to in the previous versions of this distribution. So, there is plenty of ‘new’ stuff in the new Raring Ringtail.
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Dell Server Sales Gain Ground on HP

Dell Happy About Server Sales but HP Has Something to Say about It

Dell’s President of Enterprise Solutions, Marius Haas recently revealed Dell Server sales for the first quarter of 2013. Haas was pleased with the performance of the company in this sector and commented that the company was progressing. With momentum in its favor, Dell was posing a serious challenge to rival Hewlett-Packard (HP). Not surprisingly, HP had plenty to say about the Haas’ comment and Dell’s assertion that their performance during Q1 was something to write home about.
This comes as an interesting piece of news for Dell. The company has been embroiled in a saga over it going private in the near future. Founder Michael Dell and Silver Lake Management have made a $24.4 billion leveraged bid for the company which is likely to be accepted in the weeks to come. The news that the server sales for Dell have improved is bound to delight stakeholders as the company’s performance in the enterprise sector continues to be strong.
Haas’ comments were based mostly on a report issued by Gartner, a leading market researcher. According to Gartner’s report, Dell’s server sales had improved by around 2.6% during the first quarter of the year in comparison with the same quarter for 2012. On the other hand, the shipment share for HP had fallen by over 15% relative to the first quarter of last year. Needless to say, the statistics clearly show that Dell is growing in leaps and bounds with regards to server sales.
Still, that doesn’t mean that Dell has been able to dethrone HP from its position at the top of the market share for servers. Currently, HP holds 25% of the market share, which is surprising given the data provided by Gartner in the report. The same report shows that at this time last year, the market share for the company was just over 29%. On the other hand, Dell’s market share in servers has improved from 21.5% last year to 22.2% this year.
HP’s fall is steep when compared with the increase in Dell’s market share. Gartner has said that the data is subject to change when concrete figures and statistics are made available regarding both companies’ server sales in the first quarter. Currently, the report is based on market projections and the performance of the companies as estimated by experts. On the whole, the market for servers is done by nearly 1% which means the two companies are competing in a receding market.
However, HP doesn’t believe Dell should be too happy about its server sales improving during Q1. The reason for this is that this is the first time in close to two decades that Dell has been able to overtake HP for server sales during a quarter. In HP’s statement, a high-ranking official said that the company had been outselling for ’67 quarters’ prior to this. His view is that HP isn’t seeing this as a changing trend or a threat to its market share.
For Dell, improved performance in Q1 is important when it makes the decision regarding the buyout. HP is also in a transition, so both companies are hardly stable when it comes to current structure and ownership.
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First Braille Smartphone in the Works

First Braille Smartphone in the Works

A new smartphone developed by an Indian scientist is giving the visually impaired the possibility to use their phones for more than just taking or making calls: with the help of the special Braille display, users can also read emails and text messages.
The device, dubbed the world’s first Braille smartphone until it gets an official name, was developed by Sumit Dagar, 2011 TED Fellow, and is currently in its late testing stages. Dagar, a National Institute of Design post-graduate, teamed with the IIT Delhi and the LV Prasad Eye Institute for the project, launched three years ago.

The screen of the phone is comprised of a grid of pins that can move up and down whenever an email or a text message is received. The pins form into Braille characters and shapes which the visually impaired user can read through touch.
Previous applications designed for visually impaired users, such as Siri or SayText, albeit very useful, were only based on sounds and provided limited interaction between the user and their smartphone. Other specially designed products such as Qualcomm’s RAY phone or Android application Georgie also rely heavily on voice commands and sound alerts.
Dagar’s invention is also greatly supported by the fact that it uses a type of technology named Shape Memory Alloy: the idea is that each pin remembers and reverts back to its initial shape after expanding to help form a Braille character.
The Brailled smartphone also makes various sounds and vibrates when it goes through different functions. According to Dagar, the team received an impressive response during tests and the device can be seen as more of a companion to the user than a simple phone. The inventor said he is planning to release more advanced versions of the smartphone in the near future.
If all goes well, expect the first model to be available for purchase by the end of the year. The Braille smartphone will be sold for a retail price of about $185.
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