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Hardware

Submission + - Past and Future: The Evolution of the Computer Keyboard (computerworld.com)

Lucas123 writes: As anyone who's typed on a virtual keyboard — or yelled at a voice-control app like Siri — can attest, no current text input holds a candle to a traditional computer keyboard. From the reed switch keyboards of the early '70s to the buckling spring key mechanism that drove IBM's popular PC keyboards for years to ThinTouch technology that will have about half the travel of a MacBook Air's keys, the technology that drove data entry for decades isn't likely to go anyone anytime soon. Computerworld takes a look back on five decades of keyboard development and where it's likely to go in the future.
Cloud

Submission + - Mexican hotel chain outsources IT to US (computerworld.com)

cweditor writes: Grupo Posadas has five data centers supporting more than 100 hotels and other lines of business, but it's moving almost all of those operations to a service provider in Texas. Could cloud service providers help the US become a destination for tech outsourcing instead of an exporter of tech jobs? One stumbling block: The US finds itself on the receiving end of protectionist legislation in other countries that discourages use of non-domestic IT service providers, says the Information Technology & Innovation Foundation.
Iphone

Submission + - Court Docs: iPhone Design Borrowed From Sony (itworld.com)

jfruh writes: "Documents introduced in court by Samsung show that Apple explicitly looked to Sony for design inspiration when developing the iPhone. Engineers were given the explicit instructions to imagined "What would Sony do?" Such borrowings undermine Apple's claims that Samsung stole their propietary original designs for Samsung's Android phones."
Security

Submission + - Black Hat: Card game turns you into White Hat hacker (networkworld.com)

alphadogg writes: University of Washington computer scientists have created a tabletop card game that puts players in the role of White Hat hackers, taking on missions such as hacking into hotel minibar payment systems and converting robotic vacuums into toys. While the game is designed to be fun, and not necessarily educational, players will undoubtedly pick up security concepts. The game, called Control-Alt-Hack, is being introduced at the Black Hat security conference this week.
Data Storage

Submission + - Flash Memory Slashes Power Use At Data Centers (discovery.com)

RedEaredSlider writes: Researchers from Princeton's School of Engineering and Applied Science have written a program called SSDAlloc, which tells a computer running to pretend that it's running using RAM, even though it's actually accessing the storage (flash) memory.

Most computers are designed to look in the RAM first for the data they need. Only after that does the operating look elsewhere, such as on the hard drive or a flash drive. That kind of hierarchical searching around can really slow things down.

SSDAlloc changes that, basically making a computer pretend the flash is the RAM. That cuts power consumption by up to 90 percent, the researchers say, because flash doesn't need power to run nor does it use the power that hard drives do.

Submission + - Top 100 Places To Work In IT Reward Employees for Innovation (computerworld.com)

Lucas123 writes: A supportive work environment and a commitment to innovation stands out among the top attributes a great company for IT workers, according to the results of a survey of the best places to work by Computerworld. For example, CareerBuilder awarded employees $236,000 for innovative ideas in 2011 and USAA offers $10,000 tuition reimbursement per year. At Commonwealth Financial network staffers get free stay at chairman's vacation home and Quicken Loans
gives IT staffers 4 hours a week for personal tech projects.

IBM

Submission + - IBM's Sequoia Supercomputer dethrones Fujitsu's "K" as Fastest Computer (bbc.com)

_0x783czar writes: "IBM's newly installed supercomputer "Sequoia" has led the US to regain the top spot in advanced computing. Reportedly clocking in at 273,930 times faster than the first supercomputer to make the list (Thinking Machines' CM-5/1024) back in 1993; the Sequoia can calculate in one hour, what it would take the entire population of the earth (working non-stop with hand calculators) 320 years to compute. Which is what we might expect from a machine with over 1.5 million processors.
The title had been held by the Fujitsu Company's "K" machine until now, as the Sequoia is apparently 55% faster. However, while the US has taken the lead, it also has fewer computers in the top 10 than it did only a few months ago.
Currently the Sequoia will be tasked with maintaining the US nuclear arsenal & extending the life of aging warheads. Which leaves me with the irresistible urge to quote xkcd: "we tell the robot to kill... but secretly we're afraid to tell it to love""

Cloud

Submission + - ESRI rolls out ArcGIS mapping, map services for the cloud (computerworld.com)

cweditor writes: ESRI formally unveiled organizational subscriptions for ArcGIS online, in beta since December. ArcGIS online now lets you turn data into a map service with or without a GIS server and adds tools for application development, including both native and HTML 5 support for Android and iOS. Free personal, non-commercial ArcGIS Online accounts continue, but only let you use map services, not create them, and don't include app dev tools.

Submission + - IT Jobs Expected To Grow 22% Through 2020 (computerworld.com)

Lucas123 writes: IT jobs are booming, according to a just-released biennial report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics on employment projections. Demand for software developers will be the strongest in over the next eight years, with increases ranging from 28% to 32%, depending on the type of software development. Database admins are running a close second with 31% and network & computer sysadmins are in third with 28% job growth. For IT managers, employment is projected to increase 18% by 55,800 jobs to 363,700 jobs by 2020. The median pay for IT managers in 2010 was $115,780, database admins made an median $73,490.
Android

Submission + - Google Made $550 Million From Android Since 2008 (guardian.co.uk)

bonch writes: Figures in court documents filed as part of a settlement with Oracle suggest Google generated only $550 million in Android revenue since 2008. According to the numbers, which were derived from figures offered by Google as part of a damages offer to Oracle, Google receives just over $10 per Android handset annually. Google's presence on iOS was much more lucrative, generating four times a much revenue--though it may not last, as Apple is working to replace its use of Google Maps.
United Kingdom

Submission + - Not Beer goggles, but a beer mirror... (medicalxpress.com)

sackbut writes: From the "This is obvious" department:

  From the story: "Psychologists led by Laurent Begue at the Pierre-Mendes France University in the southeastern city of Grenoble carried out an unusual experiment in a local bar and then in laboratory conditions. In the first stage, 19 drinkers, two-thirds of them men, were asked to assess their attractiveness on a scale of one to seven. Their alcohol levels were measured by a breathalyser, and true to form, the higher the amount of booze that had been drunk, the rosier the self-assessment."

The interesting second part of the experiment demonstrated that even thinking you had drank alcohol (as a placebo) was enough to inflate the subjects attractiveness in their eyes

So beer goggles are a two way street.

Security

Submission + - Pinterest Makes Spamming Fun and Easy (itworld.com)

itwbennett writes: "In an interview with Daily Dot, a spammer named 'Steve' explains how he earns over $1,000 a day on Pinterest. 'Pinterest is by FAR the easiest social network to spam right now,' says Steve. But his conscience is clear: 'I have no guilt. I'm not trying to scam anyone, or upload viruses to their computer or anything like that. I simply show products to the Pinterest community.'"
The Internet

Submission + - Thieves to steal "broadband batteries" (pcpro.co.uk) 2

Barence writes: "British broadband customers routinely have their service disrupted because of thieves stealing the copper telephone cabling. Now a new potential threat has emerged: battery theft. The former chief technologist of BT has claimed that the company's fibre broadband cabinets will become a target for battery thieves.

"Fibre to the cabinet is one of the biggest mistakes humanity has made," Dr Cochrane told the Lords' Select Committee on Superfast Broadband. "It ties a knot in the cable in terms of bandwidth and imposes huge unreliability risks.

"Once the local bandits have recognised that there is a car battery in the bottom, you can bet your bottom dollar that a crowbar will be out and the battery will keep disappearing.""

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