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Firefox 22 Released, Boosts 3-D Gaming and Video Calls 156

Today Mozilla announced the launch of Firefox 22 for desktops and Android devices. For the desktop version, WebRTC, the open source browser-based communications API, is now enabled by default. "This technology makes it possible to place and receive video calls from a mobile or desktop browser or share live video, files and images with friends and family." Firefox 22 also has support for the asm.js subset of JavaScript, which allows for big performance boosts on graphically complex applications in the browser. (We saw a demonstration of this a while back.) Other new features include display scaling options for making text bigger on high-res displays, better WebGL rendering performance, word wrapping for text files displayed in the browser, and the ability to change the playback rate of HTML5 audio and video. The new Android version features include tablet UI support for smaller tablets, and a fix for scrolling in nested frames.

Managing an Elite eSport Team 163

An anonymous reader writes "Ever wondered what it takes to run a world class stable of pro-gamers? In a new profile, 4Kings general manager Jason Potter takes the time to explain his duties — they're remarkably like what's required of other sports managers. It's up to Potter to manage a team of FPS gamers scattered across the continent, getting them to events, arranging sponsorship, and even making sure they play nice together. 'It's a 24 hour job,' Potter says. 'If there is something that needs to be done, you do it.'"

So What If Yahoo's New Dads Get Less Leave Than Moms? 832

Dawn Kawamoto writes "Yahoo rolled out an expanded maternity/paternity policy that doubled the family leave for moms to 16 weeks. But new dads at Yahoo get only 8 weeks. It turns out that Yahoo is not the only Fortune 500 company to short-shrift news dads. But, really, do new dads think it's worth crying over? Hmmm...changing diapers or cleaning up code — both are messy, but one smells less."

Nokia: Google's Nexus 7 Tablet Infringes Our Patents 183

walterbyrd writes with a story at The Inquirer outlining the latest volley in the patent wars surrounding mobile hardware, this time aimed at the new Aus-built Nexus 7 tablet from Google by Nokia, in which the company's spokesman says, "Nokia has more than 40 licensees, mainly for its standards essential patent portfolio, including most of the mobile device manufacturers. Neither Google nor Asus is licensed under our patent portfolio. 'Companies who are not yet licensed under our standard essential patents should simply approach us and sign up for a license.'"
Data Storage

How Do You Store Your Personal Photos? 680

mxhf writes "I just came back from a four-week vacation to Mexico. This is the country for Aztecs and Maya Ruins and we visited plenty of them. Needless to say we took thousands of pictures with two cameras. Having arrived back home I realize that my hard-disk does not have enough space left to hold the additional 16GB that I collected on the other side of the globe. Now, my hard disk already is 250GB. I work exclusively on a laptop and do not want to change this. I know that there are larger disks today. But I figured that the time has come to finally move my image collection from my laptop to somewhere else. But where should I go? So, how do you store your photo collections? And how do you keep backups? These are obviously images that I want to keep for my life. So the need to survive fires, burglaries, etc. I think the amount of data I have rules online storage out. Should I just get two USB disks and leave one at a reasonably save location? I think this must be a common problem today. And yes — before you ask — I do know that the first thing to do is to go through your collection and dump what is not worth keeping."

NSS Labs Browser Report Says IE Is the Best, Google Disagrees 205

adeelarshad82 writes "Independent testing company NSS Labs recently published a report on the ability of popular browsers to block socially engineered malware attack URLs. The test, funded by Microsoft, reported a 99 percent detection rate by Internet Explorer 9 beta, 90 percent by Internet Explorer 8, and 3 percent by Google Chrome. However, Google doesn't entirely approve of this report's focus and conclusions. According to Google not only didn't the report use Chrome 6 for the tests, the current version is Chrome 8; it also focused just on socially engineered malware, while excluding vulnerabilities in plug-ins or browsers themselves. Google defended its browser by claiming that it was built with security in mind and emphasized protection of users from drive-by downloads and plug-in vulnerabilities."

iPad Progress Report 374

Now that the 300,000 early adopters have had a few days to play and work with their iPads, we're moving beyond the "first impressions" articles (but here's a video of a 2-1/2-year-old's first encounter with the device). The detailed reviews aren't out yet. The largest source of early complaints is a complex of problems with Wi-Fi reception. Apple has posted a technical support note implicitly acknowledging the problems and suggesting some work-arounds — specifically, changing SSIDs or encryption methods on base stations that offer both 2.4-GHz and 5.8-GHz signals. Finally, here's a detailed look at the gratuitous pain Apple imposes on those desiring to get iWork files transferred from and to the iPad.
Data Storage

Blu-ray Capacity Increase Via Firmware 232

LordofEntropy writes "Blu-ray.com reports that Sony and Panasonic have announced a new optical disc evaluation technology that increases capacity from 25GB to 33.4GB. The tech uses existing Blu-ray diodes and is accomplished via firmware upgrade. The article says it is not known if and when the upgrade will be adopted into the Blu-ray spec. However, given that Sony and Panasonic are behind it, 'it will likely happen later this year.'"

ARM and Dual-Atom Processors in New Portables 147

chrb writes to tell us that Dell's new Latitude Z has finally been delivered as promised, complete with ARM processor. Codenamed BlackTop, the device runs a modified version of Suse Linux, and is capable of near-instant bootup. Dell's research has apparently found that some early users spend 70% of their time in the Linux environment." Relatedly snydeq writes "Colombian computer maker Haleron has designed a netbook that combines Atom processors in an effort to provide the performance of a standard laptop at a price more affordable to Latin Americans. The Swordfish Net N102 includes two Atom N270 processors running at 1.6GHz. Haleron worked for six months to modify Intel's 945 chipset to run the two processors. The processors divide the workload, much like a dual-core processor does, the company said. The netbook, which begs the question, when does a netbook stop being a netbook, comes with Windows XP Home Edition. 'We found that it works best on the Windows XP operating system. Both Windows Vista and the new Windows 7 performed below Windows XP in the load sharing department,' the company said."

Excalibur Almaz To Offer Commercial Orbital Flights 76

xp65 alerts to the plans of an international consortium called Excalibur Almaz Limited to open up a new era of private orbital space flight for commercial customers. The group, consisting of Russian, US, and Japanese companies, will use a formerly top-secret Soviet re-entry vehicle called Almaz to carry paying research crews on one-week missions into Earth orbit by 2013. This ambition represents a large step beyond the sub-orbital flight market so far targeted by most other private space companies. "Excalibur has raised 'tens of millions of dollars' to initiate what will become a several hundred million dollar program, [CEO] Dula tells Spaceflight Now. He has spent more than 20 years eying this specific Almaz program... He also says 'the business plan closes' generating profits within a few years. His surveys have found research and science customers for space missions that are not tourist hops, but less demanding than ISS operations."

Null Character Hack Allows SSL Spoofing 280

eldavojohn writes "Two researchers, Dan Kaminsky and Moxie Marlinspike, came up with exact same way to fake being a popular website with authentication from a certificate authority. Wired has the details: 'When an attacker who owns his own domain — badguy.com — requests a certificate from the CA, the CA, using contact information from Whois records, sends him an email asking to confirm his ownership of the site. But an attacker can also request a certificate for a subdomain of his site, such as Paypal.com\0.badguy.com, using the null character \0 in the URL. The CA will issue the certificate for a domain like PayPal.com\0.badguy.com because the hacker legitimately owns the root domain badguy.com. Then, due to a flaw found in the way SSL is implemented in many browsers, Firefox and others theoretically can be fooled into reading his certificate as if it were one that came from the authentic PayPal site. Basically when these vulnerable browsers check the domain name contained in the attacker's certificate, they stop reading any characters that follow the "\0 in the name.'"

KGB Material Released By Cold War Project, Available Online 94

pha7boy writes "The Cold War International History Project just released the 'Vassiliev Notebooks.' The notebooks are an important new source of information on Soviet intelligence operations in the United States from 1930 to 1950. Though the KGB's archive remains closed, former KGB officer turned journalist Alexander Vassiliev was given the unique opportunity to spend two years poring over materials from the KGB archive taking detailed notes — including extended verbatim quotes — on some of the KGB's most sensitive files. Though Vassiliev's access was not unfettered, the 1,115 pages of densely handwritten notes that he was able to take shed new and important light on such critical individuals and topics as Alger Hiss, the Rosenberg case, and 'Enormous,' the massive Soviet effort to gather intelligence on the Anglo-American atomic bomb project. Alexander Vassiliev has donated his original copies of the handwritten notebooks to the Library of Congress with no restriction on access. They are available to researchers in the Manuscript Division."

Diplomacy is the art of saying "nice doggy" until you can find a rock.