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Submission + - Australia drops second Google investigation (zdnet.com.au)

joshgnosis writes: The Australian Privacy Commissioner has decided against investigating Google a second time over the collection of Wi-Fi payload data in Google's Street View cars.

Despite a damning FCC report released last month claiming that senior manager within Google were aware that a "rogue" engineer was working on the project on the side, he said a second investigation wouldn't yield any new results.

"I have decided not to open another investigation into Google Street View," he said in a statement. "In reaching this decision, I have considered the FCC's report and don't consider that a new investigation would reveal any information that would change our original finding."


Submission + - LTE integrated quad-core CPUs on the horizon (pcauthority.com.au)

An anonymous reader writes: Around the world, astute watchers of the smartphone market have noticed that despite “quad-core” CPUs rapidly becoming the norm, there is a noticeable absence of quad-core 4G phones. At the moment there are no handsets on the market that combine the highest CPU speeds with the highest network speeds. “Flagship” quad core phones like the HTC One X and the Samsung Galaxy S3 all have dual core versions for their 4G options. As this article explains, battery life issues are partly to blame. One of the big issues comes from the fact that there are no quad-core processors with integrated LTE chips — something that would vastly improve battery life. Both Qualcomm and Nvidia make LTE radios and quad-core processors, but the two haven’t been paired on the die as of yet, although this is being worked on.

Submission + - The Books Programmers Don't Read (itworld.com)

itwbennett writes: "You know those must-read programming books? Turns out most of you haven't actually read them. Skimmed, maybe. Been assigned sections in college courses, sure. Programming blogger Bill the Lizard calls you out, with a plea to 'stop recommending books to others that you haven't read yourself'. What books are on your 'haven't read it, lied about it' list?"

Submission + - Google Unveils Official URL Shortener (blogspot.com)

iONiUM writes: "Today Google has officially release its own URL shortener: g.co, with the public shortener page of goo.gl. On their blog, it notes "There’s no need to fret about the fate of goo.gl; we like it as much as you do, and nothing is changing on that front. It will continue to be our public URL shortener that anybody can use to shorten URLs across the web." As well, it can be assumed they will start using this service shortly on Google+ shared links, along with Buzz and other services."

Submission + - AMD claims Xbox 720 visuals on a par with Avatar (geek.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Although we don’t know when the next consoles from Sony and Microsoft will arive, AMD is starting to drop hints about the capabilities of the next Xbox. AMD is thought to be providing the GPU(s) that will sit inside the Xbox 720, so it should be an authority on what it is capable of graphically at least. Neal Robison, director of ISV relationships for AMD, states that we should expect to be seeing visuals like Avatar. So that’s real-time renders of the quality seen in James Cameroon‘s movie as standard on the next Xbox.

Submission + - Best Buy geeked off by NewEGG's "GEEK ON" (facebook.com)

GuruBuckaroo writes: Best Buy apparently didn't take well to NewEgg.com's new TV commercial with its dead-on depiction of what it decided was a "slovenly and uninformed" Geek Squad employee, prompting a cease-and-desist letter targeting both the ad and NewEgg's new "GEEK ON" branding. Predictably, NewEgg does not concur.

Submission + - Bank of America Foreclosed on by Homeowner (digtriad.com) 1

DWMorse writes:

Have you heard the one about a homeowner foreclosing on a bank? Well, it has happened in Florida and involves a North Carolina based bank. Instead of Bank of America foreclosing on some Florida homeowner, the homeowners had sheriff's deputies foreclose on the bank. It started five months ago when Bank of America filed foreclosure papers on the home of a couple, who didn't owe a dime on their home. The couple said they paid cash for the house. The case went to court and the homeowners were able to prove they didn't owe Bank of America anything on the house. In fact, it was proven that the couple never even had a mortgage bill to pay. A Collier County Judge agreed and after the hearing, Bank of America was ordered, by the court to pay the legal fees of the homeowners', Maurenn Nyergers and her husband. The Judge said the bank wrongfully tried to foreclose on the Nyergers' house. So, how did it end with bank being foreclosed on? After more than 5 months of the judge's ruling, the bank still hadn't paid the legal fees, and the homeowner's attorney did exactly what the bank tried to do to the homeowners. He seized the bank's assets. "They've ignored our calls, ignored our letters, legally this is the next step to get my clients compensated, " attorney Todd Allen told CBS. Sheriff's deputies, movers, and the Nyergers' attorney went to the bank and foreclosed on it. The attorney gave instructions to to remove desks, computers, copiers, filing cabinets and any cash in the teller's drawers. After about an hour of being locked out of the bank, the bank manager handed the attorney a check for the legal fees. "As a foreclosure defense attorney this is sweet justice" says Allen.


Submission + - Yahoo lays off 600... free beers, jobs flow (computerworld.com)

CWmike writes: Yahoo confirmed on Tuesday that it has laid off 600 people, following news reports often based on Twitter messages from employees who had been let go. The layoffs amount to about 4 percent of the company's global workforce, Yahoo said. The company said affected workers are receiving severance packages and outplacement services. Laid-off workers may find some comfort on Twitter, where they are receiving an outpouring of goodwill. One San Francisco brewery is offering a free beer to people from Yahoo who show their termination letters. People with companies including Aprendi Learning, Tucows.com, DirecTV, Combine Couture, OMGPOP.com and Uptake.com all posted Twitter messages expressing interest in hiring former Yahoo employees. The site Quora is hosting a thread for companies in the San Francisco area interested in hiring laid-off Yahoo workers. So far, there are 14 posts about jobs with companies including Yammer, Mozilla and Cloudera.

Submission + - Xmarks Secured by LastPass, Continues as Freemium (lastpass.com)

DWMorse writes: Back in September, Xmarks announced they were closing shop unless they got enough pledges to continue the service on essentially a donation basis. After a relatively brief period, the poll was closed shy of the required number of pledges, and a general end date of service was announced for sometime in the winter in 2010.

However, just a few days ago, LastPass has quietly purchased Xmarks. Now self-named as the "new ultimate cross-platform team," LastPass promises explicitly that they will continue providing Xmarks as a free service with all it's current capabilities and cross-platform cross-browser supports. They also now offer the option to upgrade to a Premium account for $12 USD, mostly for increased support priority and some new features.


Submission + - Atomic weight not so constant (yahoo.com)

DangerousBeauty writes: Yahoo has a Canadian Press story up about new changes to the periodic table of elements, concerning the weight of specific elements, and the fact that the weights fluctuate based on where they are found in nature. From the article ""People are probably comfortable with having a single value for the atomic weight, but that is not the reality for our natural world." says University of Calgary associate professor Michael Wieser.

Submission + - Gmail Creator Predicts Google Will Kill ChromeOS (itworld.com)

itwbennett writes: Paul Bucheit, the guy who created Gmail and AdSense, said in a Twitter post that he predicts 'ChromeOS will be killed next year (or merged with Android).' Of course, Bucheit isn't the only one who has little faith in ChromeOS, but it's always fun to be reminded that he's responsible for the 'Don't Be Evil' slogan.

Neckties strangle clear thinking. -- Lin Yutang