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Opera Supports Google Decision To Drop H.264 336

An anonymous reader follows up to yesterday's Google announcement that they would drop H.264 support from Chrome. "Thomas Ford, Senior Communications Manager, Opera, told Muktware, 'Actually, Opera has never supported H.264. We have always chosen to support open formats like Ogg Theora and WebM. In fact, Opera was the first company to propose the tag, and when we did, we did it with Ogg. Simply put, we welcome Google's decision to rely on open codecs for HTML5 video.'"

Samsung's Galaxy Tab Android Tablet Now Official 210

itwbennett writes "Samsung held a media event Thursday introducing the Galaxy Tab, and making official what we've already known for weeks, says blogger Peter Smith. 'We still don't have a price or a concrete ship date (though definitely this fall; Samsung says it'll be available for the holiday season),' says Smith. 'It'll ship with Android 2.2 (Froyo), runs Flash, has a 1Ghz Hummingbird CPU, 16GB of memory, a 7" LCD (1204 x 600 ) screen and weighs about 13 ounces. They're claiming a 7-hour battery life. Two cameras: a front-facing 1.3 megapixel, and a back-facing 3 megapixel. It has an HDMI port and will also share media to DLNA devices on the same network.'" Engadget adds some video footage.

HDCP Master Key Is Legitimate; Blu-ray Is Cracked 1066

adeelarshad82 writes "Intel has confirmed that the leaked HDCP master key protecting millions of Blu-ray discs and devices that was posted to the Web this week is legitimate. The disclosure means, in effect, that all Blu-ray discs can now be unlocked and copied. HDCP (High Definition Content Protection), which was created by Intel and is administered by Digital Content Protection LLP, is the content encryption scheme that protects data, typically movies, as they pass across a DVI or an HDMI cable. According to an Intel official, the most likely scenario for a hacker would be to create a computer chip with the master key embedded it, that could be used to decode Blu-ray discs."

Brazil Forbids DRM On the Public Domain 258

nunojsilva writes "Cory Doctorow reports that the Brazilian equivalent of DMCA explicitly forbids using DRM-like techniques on works in the public domain. 'Brazil has just created the best-ever implementation of WCT [WIPO Copyright Treaty]. In Brazil's version of the law, you can break DRM without breaking the law, provided you're not also committing a copyright violation.' This means that, unlike the US, where it is illegal to break DRM, in Brazil it is illegal to break the public domain."

Stem Cells Curing Burn-Induced Blindness 54

mcgrew writes "The AP (via Yahoo) is reporting that Italian researchers can now cure blindness caused by chemical burns using the patient's own stem cells. 'The treatment worked completely in 82 of 107 eyes and partially in 14 others, with benefits lasting up to a decade so far. One man whose eyes were severely damaged more than 60 years ago now has near-normal vision.' Previously, this kind of injury needed either a corneal transplant or stem cells from someone else, both of which are plagued by problems with tissue rejection. Unfortunately, this only works for damaged corneas — so far."

Apple Sues HTC Again Over Patents 263

recoiledsnake writes "Apple is suing HTC again over patent infringement. Apple is adding two new patents to the 20 included in the earlier case while adding additional details to two patents included previously. Although Android is not mentioned in any of the court documents, many of the patent infringement complaints refer to the software rather than the hardware that HTC manufactures, leading to speculation that Google is the real target, especially considering that Android sales are surpassing the iPhone's. With HTC countersuing Apple, Microsoft siding with HTC over Android, and Apple trying to stop import of Nokia phones, it seems like Apple has set off a patent Armageddon in the mobile space."

Apple Wants To Share Your Location With Others 248

Farhood sends in this snip from the LA Times: "In an updated version of its privacy policy, the company added a paragraph noting that once users agree, Apple and unspecified 'partners and licensees' may collect and store user location data. When users attempt to download apps or media from the iTunes store, they are prompted to agree to the new terms and conditions. Until they agree, they cannot download anything through the store. The company says the data is anonymous and does not personally identify users. Analysts have shown, however, that large, specific data sets can be used to identify people based on behavior patterns." Mashable and The Consumerist have picked up on this collection and sharing of "precise location data, including the real-time geographic location of your Apple computer or device."

Germany Finds Kismet, Custom Code In Google Car 237

theodp writes "While waiting for a hard disk of Wi-Fi data that Google says its Street View cars gathered by mistake, the Hamburg Information Commissioner's office performed tests on a Google Street View car in a controlled environment with simulated wireless networks and issued the following statement: 'For the Wi-Fi coverage in the Street View cars, both the free software Kismet, and a Google-specific program were used. The Google-specific program components are available only in machine-readable binary code, which makes it impossible to analyze the internal processing.' Interestingly, a 2008 academic paper — Drive-by Localization of Roadside WiFi Networks (PDF) — describes a similar setup, and its authors discuss how they 'modified Kismet, a popular wireless packet sniffer, to optionally capture all packets received on the raw virtual interface.' Computerworld reports that lawyers in a class-action suit have amended their complaint to link a Google patent app to Street View data sniffing."

Breakthrough In Stem Cell Culturing 57

Science Daily reports that for the first time, human embryonic stem cells have been cultured under chemically controlled conditions without the use of animal substances, which is essential for future clinical uses. "Now, for the first time, we can produce large quantities of human embryonic stem cells in an environment that is completely chemically defined," says professor Karl Tryggvason, who led the study at Sweden's Karolinska Institutet. "This opens up new opportunities for developing different types of cells which can then be tested for the treatment of disease."

The Futurama of Physics 150

MasaMuneCyrus writes "I was surprised to notice an article about Futurama in my latest American Physical Society news. Titled, 'Profiles in Versatility: The Futurama of Physics with David X. Cohen,' Cohen talks a little bit about his life and his love for physics, and he goes on to describe how he regularly injects graduate-level physics jokes into the script of Futurama. He also talks a little bit about the upcoming season of Futurama: 'In the 10th episode of the upcoming season, tentatively entitled "The Prisoner of Benda," a theorem based on group theory was specifically written (and proven!) by staffer/PhD mathematician Ken Keeler to explain a plot twist.'"

The Pirate Party of Canada Is Official 430

wasme writes "The Pirate Party of Canada has become the first Pirate Party outside of Europe to become an official political party. Elections Canada confirmed with the party that the PPCA has gained 'eligible for registration' status, and can run in elections starting June 14. From the PPCA's official announcement: 'We are pleased to announce that as of April 12, 2010, the Pirate Party of Canada is officially eligible for Party Status. After 10 months of dedication and hard work, we have reached eligible status, which only leaves a 60-day "purgatory" period. After that, we will field candidates in subsequent federal elections, and begin the real work of a political party.'"

NSA Develops USB Storage Device Detector 233

Hugh Pickens writes "Bob Brewin writes on NextGov that the National Security Agency has developed a software tool that detects thumb drives or other flash media connected to a network. The NSA says the tool, called the USBDetect 3.0 Computer Network Defense Tool, provides 'network administrators and system security officials with an automated capability to detect the introduction of USB storage devices into their networks. This tool closes potential security vulnerabilities; a definite success story in the pursuit of the [Defense Department] and NSA protect information technology system strategic goals.' The tool gathers data from the registry on Microsoft Windows machines (PDF) and reports whether storage devices, such as portable music or video players, external hard drives, flash drives, jump drives, or thumb drives have been connected to the USB port. 'I have a hunch that a bunch of other agencies use the detection software,' writes Brewin."

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