WheezyJoe writes "A story on NPR reports that the TrackingPoint rifle went on sale today, and can enable a 'novice' to hit a target 500 yards away on the first try. The rifle's scope features a sophisticated color graphics display (video). The shooter locks a laser on the target by pushing a small button by the trigger... But here's where it's different: You pull the trigger but the gun decides when to shoot. It fires only when the weapon has been pointed in exactly the right place, taking into account dozens of variables, including wind, shake and distance to the target. The rifle has a built-in laser range finder, a ballistics computer and a Wi-Fi transmitter to stream live video and audio to a nearby iPad. Every shot is recorded so it can be replayed, or posted to YouTube or Facebook."
Hot on the heels of the Gtk+ 3.8 release comes GNOME 3.8. There are a few general UI improvements, but the highlight for many is the new Classic mode that replaces fallback. Instead of using code based on the old GNOME panel, Classic emulates the feel of GNOME 2 through Shell extensions (just like Linux Mint's Cinnamon interface). From the release notes: "Classic mode is a new feature for those people who prefer a more traditional desktop experience. Built entirely from GNOME 3 technologies, it adds a number of features such as an application menu, a places menu and a window switcher along the bottom of the screen. Each of these features can be used individually or in combination with other GNOME extensions."
Nerval's Lobster writes "Microsoft is leaving billions of dollars on the table by not porting Office to the iPad, according to a new analyst report. That analyst, Morgan Stanley's Adam Holt, believes that Office for iOS would sell to approximately 30 percent of all iPad users; priced at $60 per copy, that comes to a grand total of $2.5 billion per year — minus Apple's cut of the revenues, of course. But does Microsoft actually want Office for iOS out there? It's not necessarily in the company's best interest to rush such a platform to market, even if billions of dollars potentially hang in the balance — it's too busy pushing Office as a cloud-based, OS-agnostic platform. And Microsoft has another reason, aside from pushing the cloud version of Office, to de-emphasize the prospect of its productivity software on iOS: In a bid to draw more customers to its new hardware, Microsoft preloaded its Surface RT tablets with Office; offering the software on a rival touch-screen would take a major selling point off the table."
Yesterday saw the release of a clip from the upcoming movie jOBS, a biopic about the life of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs. The clip shows Jobs, played by Ashton Kutcher, having a conversation with Steve Wozniak, played by Josh Gad, about how influential an operating system for a personal computer would be. The real Steve Wozniak commented on the clip, saying the situation it portrayed was "totally wrong." He said, "Personalities and where the ideas of computers affecting society did not come from Jobs. They inspired me and were widely spoken at the Homebrew Computer Club. Steve came back from Oregon and came to a club meeting and didn't start talking about this great social impact. His idea was to make a $20 PC board and sell it for $40 to help people at the club build the computer I'd given away. Steve came from selling surplus parts at HalTed he always saw a way to make a quick buck off my designs (this was the 5th time). The lofty talk came much further down the line." Wozniak was quick to add that he isn't making any judgment on the quality of the movie based on a single, 1-minute clip, and that the rest of the movie may or may not be more accurate. He also says he hopes it's entertaining.
Gunkerty Jeb writes "After banning the word 'jailbreak' from its app store and music library, Apple [Friday] reversed course and again permits the term — slang for hacking into a device to download unauthorized content — to appear on iTunes and its App Store. On Thursday bloggers noticed Apple had censored the word, using the Thin Lizzy album 'Jailbreak' as an example. For awhile, the title was listed as 'J******k' in Apple's music library, at least its U.S. version. In other instances, digital content continued to bear the full name Jailbreak."
alphadogg writes "It's free, easier to use than ever, IT staffers know it and love it, and it has fewer viruses and Trojans than Windows. So, why hasn't Linux on the desktop taken off? When it comes to desktop Linux, the cost savings turn out to be problematic, there are management issues, and compatibility remains an issue. 'We get a lot more questions about switching to Macs than switching to Linux at this point, even though Macs are more expensive,' one Gartner analyst says."
Titus Andronicus writes "Years in the making, the major new release of VideoLAN's media player has better support for multicore processors, GPUs, and much, much more. From the announcement: 'Twoflower has a new rendering pipeline for video, with higher quality subtitles, and new video filters to enhance your videos. It supports many new devices and BluRay Discs (experimental). Completely reworked Mac and Web interfaces and improvements in the other interfaces make VLC easier than ever to use. Twoflower fixes several hundreds of bugs, in more than 7000 commits from 160 volunteers.'"
So, to re-summarize this story: Because a deal that would have reduced competition has been blocked, competition will increase. But for everyone, not just AT&T.
hype7 writes "The Harvard Business Review is running an article on Siri, the speech recognition technology inside the new iPhone. They make the case that Siri's use of artificial intelligence and speech recognition is going to change the way we interact with machines. From the article: 'The advantage of using speech over other interaction paradigms is that we have honed its use over thousands of years. It is entirely natural for us to talk to one another. Talking is one of the first things we learn how to do as children. It's second nature for us to ask a colleague or a friend a question and for them to answer the same way. Being able to talk to a phone like it's a personal assistant is something that people are going to get very used to, very quickly. It's a much more natural approach than using a mouse on a desktop. And I highly doubt the impact is going to stop at phones.'"
An anonymous reader writes "A 31 year old Swedish male was arrested for trying to build a nuclear reactor in his apartment. He got hold of radioactive material thru mail-order purchases and from smoke detectors. Police raided his apartment after he had contacted the Swedish Radiation Authority (Strålsäkerhetsmyndigheten) to inquire if it was legal to construct a nuclear reactor at home."
tekgoblin writes "PayPal was attacked by Anonymous last year when they had blocked the Wikileaks accounts transactions. Now PayPal has finally come up with enough evidence to strike back at Anonymous with the help of the FBI. PayPal has come up with a list of over 1,000 IP Addresses left behind when they were attacked by Anonymous."
CWmike writes "Apple approved the Google+ app for the iPhone on Tuesday, and posted it to the App Store. It's unclear whether Google has created an iPad-specific app. Two weeks ago, a Google employee said that the company had submitted Google+ to the App Store ... on July 4. According to that timeline, Google's app took twice as long as the majority of submitted apps to win Apple's approval."
An anonymous reader writes "When Oracle acquired Sun in 2009, the company got its hands on a lot of desirable technology. While OpenOffice may have fallen by the wayside, Oracle isn't about to let the Java programming language and its associated patents remain untouched if they can generate some additional revenue. In fact, the company is currently in the middle of a legal battle with Google over those patents that could potentially net Oracle billions and leave Android crippled. In August last year Oracle sued Google for infringing Java patents and copyright by developing Android. Oracle argues that Android uses technology derived from Java and therefore infringes multiple patents. It wants compensation, but with most court documents and details not publicly available, it's hard to know specifics. However, new documents made available late last week revealed just how much Oracle thinks is an acceptable damages payment for Google to make. According to an expert Oracle hired, Google could be looking at a bill between $1.4 billion and $6.1 billion for its alleged infringements."
tripleevenfall writes "Clayton Morris reviews the Galaxy Tab 10.1, and finds it lacking, especially at the $400 price point, saying 'I can't in good conscience tell you to go out and spend $400 on this half-baked experience when the fully baked iPad experience can be had for just a few dollars more.'"
itwbennett writes "Google's Bing sting, reported in Slashdot just days ago and subsequently denied by Microsoft, is now being called 'silly' and 'petty' by search industry analysts and execs. The reason: it would be impossible for Microsoft to use the copied results to reverse engineer Google's search algorithms. And in fact it is more likely that Microsoft was conducting competitive research. Charlene Li, founder of technology research and advisory firm Altimeter Group, saw Google's actions as a misguided response to a real threat from a competitor in its core search business. 'Google isn't used to having competition. You look at this incident and you wonder why they are doing this. It feels amateurish in a way, a kind of 'they're not playing fair' attitude,' she said."