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Google Announces Android 4.3, Netflix, New Nexus 7, and Q Successor Chromecast 244

At a press conference dubbed "Breakfast With Sundar," Google announced two new pieces of hardware and a minor revision to Android. Complete stories and commentary are still coming in, but in the mean time you can skim a liveblog or two First is the new Nexus 7. The hardware is slightly improved (full HD screen, better graphics, etc.). The specs managed to "leak" hours before the event through Best Buy opening preordering too early. On the software side, they've announced a minor revision to Android, 4.3. It features improved Bluetooth support (including Bluetooth 4.0), OpenGL ES 3.0, enhanced internationalization, enhanced DRM, and multi-user support. The multi-user support looks most exciting: now you can share a tablet with more than one person. One of the features Google focused on was restricted profiles: a device owner can create accounts that e.g. cannot make in-app purchases (Junior won't rack up a $3000 bill again). Bad news: Google is implementing stricter DRM for books and video, locking down the entire video stack. The consolation prize is that Netflix will work on more devices and at 1080p. Also demoed were a new version of Chrome that brings the tablet experience closer to the desktop, improved hangouts, and improved maps. Google also appears to be making a push into gaming, emphasizing tablet-only games that integrate into Google+. In addition to gaming, they have secured deals with five major textbook publishers to sell students presumably DRMed electronic textbooks that can be purchased or rented, enhanced with better search and highlighting (because PDF readers don't support those features already). As usual lately, all of the really nice additions to Android are proprietary and tied to Google services, further eroding the open nature of Android. Finally, they announced a tiny $35 dongle named Chromecast that appears to be the successor of the Nexus Q. Running Chrome OS, it connects to any HDMI port, finds your Wi-Fi network, and Just Works (tm) for online video. The online and mobile Youtube and Netflix interfaces will allow you to hit a single button and forward the video to your television as well. Google Music streaming to the television is also supported. The Chromecast looks like a handy little device, hopefully it is turns out it can be reflashed. Of course, when using your browser as a remote, all of the commands go through The Cloud. An SDK and more details on the software side of things are slated for release later today, although conspiciously absent on their supported platforms list is GNU/Linux, listing only Chrome OS and Android. Update: 07/24 18:01 GMT by U L : The Chromecast SDK is out, but with an awfully restrictive license that requires written permission from Google to distribute any cast enabled applications, which appears to make it completely incompatible with Free/Open Source software.

Comment Re:I don't want to be "that guy", however (Score 1) 319

Pretty much this. OSGi and Maven made me like Java. I used to say that C# was Java done right, but OSGi and Maven opened up an entirely new world for me.

I don't think in terms of Java programs or even packages anymore. They're Maven artifacts and OSGi bundles (if you're structuring your projects right, there should be a 1:1 correspondence between the two, not counting POM-only parent projects).

Wake me when C# gets something as cool as Maven and OSGi.

Comment Re:the message is clear: MAKE IT !!! (Score -1, Flamebait) 632

So, how do you plan to stamp out racism? Genetic modification so everyone has William's syndrome?

I've also heard that Australia has refugee camps where they house immigrants until they can be proven to not be a danger to society. How do you feel about aboriginals using up your social services funds? It isn't like Australia is actually a shining beacon of multiculturalism.

Every year there are more black-on-white murder victims in the United States than in the entire lynching history of the KKK. Excuses for the behavior or shifting blame doesn't mean much to the rotting victims of reverse racism.

I don't want to take away the rights of other cultures in America. I just want the one major right that the other cultures have: The right of association. As in if I want to go off and built a new city, fence it off, and only let in people who pass a genetic test as white, the Federal government will keep its nose out of it like they've kept their nose out of the increasing black-on-white violence going on in our cities.

Comment Re:the message is clear: MAKE IT !!! (Score -1, Troll) 632

It is sad that liberals believe that guns are cursed objects that take control of its helpless human "victim" and then forces them to go around and kill others. They refuse to admit that the problem is with those who hold the guns and commit murder.

But please, don't blame it on American culture. There is no such thing as American culture. There is white culture, hispanic culture, black culture, and various asian cultures all jammed into one nation. The only "melting pot" is that these cultures are being forced into the same areas which leads to conflict.

The idea was that people would move to this nation and they would take up the majority of our way of life while we take on some of theirs. I don't think it is working anymore.

The only real melting pot is cuisine, and most of it is presented in a way that will lead people to an early grave (huge portions, more than your recommended daily sodium intake in one meal, trans fat, high fructose corn syrup jammed into almost everything in amounts far beyond what the corn industry claims is safe in moderation).

The only real solution is to bring back restrictive covenants so each race can have their own towns. Now some might say "Oh but that's racist!", but we already have hispanic majority areas, black majority areas, asian majority areas, and rich white/jewish areas. But those of us whites that aren't rich aren't allowed to use the violence that the other races use to enforce their reign over an area, so we have to constantly perform white flight. The areas where my parents grew up are overrun. If I ever manage to have kids, I won't be able to safely show them the towns where I went for Easter, the Fourth of July fireworks, Thanksgiving, Christmas, or New Years as a child.

I don't want my hypothetical kids to go through that. I want them to have a strong connection to an area and community which multiculturalism prevents.

I know some people will be pissed at me for daring to express my opinion, but when I have a tooth ache I don't go around saying I have a pain on my head. I'm specific about where the pain is. So to say America has a problem with Urban Youth is disingenuous. It has a problem with mainly black and hispanic males aged 10 through 30. Typically by 30 they either grow out of it or get shot by one of their own.

Whatever the cause, be it genetics, their culture, evil whitey oppression, or Sun spots, I don't want to live by it. I want to live in a white-only community where I don't have to earn $250,000 a year to afford the mortgage. I want to be able to build myself an wallet-friendly earthbag house with cash and not be attached to a usury contract with some bank for 15 to 30 years.

Whites only build these super expensive neighborhoods because there isn't another legal option to keep out "diversity here to culturally enrich us." We worship property values and do all we can to protect them because it is a matter of life and death to us. Eventually real estate agents plant some diversity into a neighborhood and the real estate agents get to profit again by selling the whites new houses in a new neighborhood and buying their old houses cheap which they then either sell or rent out as government subsidized housing. But this hurts the whites who can't afford to move on.

So please, let us white people create white-only communities. Send us "racist bigots" off to frigid lands with poor soil quality. We'll survive and thrive well if we don't have to constantly flee. We'll definitely have less gun violence.

Comment Re:Grab your ankles... They're after freedom or mo (Score 1) 271

Except there's a huge difference.

With terrestrial TV and radio, every station in the area broadcasts at the same time, so there's a hard maximum on the amount of people who can send content to you at all. With the Internet, you can pick and choose who gets to send data through your line. You may only get X number of "channels" at once, but you can swap them out for other "channels" whenever you like.


The "Copyright Black Hole" Swallowing Our Culture 278

An anonymous reader writes "James Boyle, professor at Duke Law School, has a piece in the Financial Times in which he argues that a 'copyright black hole is swallowing our culture.' He explains some of the issues surrounding Google Books, and makes the point that these issues wouldn't exist if we had a sane copyright law. Relatedly, in recent statements to the still-skeptical European Commission, Google has defended their book database by saying that it helps to make the Internet democratic. Others have noted that the database could negatively affect some researchers for whom a book's subject matter isn't always why they read it."
Input Devices

Ideas For the Next Generation In Human-Computer Interfaces 170

Singularity Hub writes "For decades our options for interacting with the digital world have been limited to keyboards, mice, and joysticks. Now with a new generation of exciting new interfaces in the pipeline our interaction with the digital world will be forever changed. Singularity Hub looks at some amazing demonstrations, mostly videos, that showcase new ways of interacting with the digital world." Along similar lines, reader shakuni points out a facial expression-driven user interface reported on News.com for operating, say, an iPhone, explaining "This device is tiny and fits into the ear and measures movements inside the ear due to changes in facial expression and then uses that as input triggers. So [tongue out] starts or stops your iPod Touch; [Wink] rewinds to the last song; and [smile] replays the same song."

With Lawsuit Settled, Hackers Working With MBTA 90

narramissic writes "The three MIT students who were sued earlier this year by the Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority for planning to show at Defcon how they had had reverse engineered the magnetic stripe tickets and smartcards said Monday that they are now working to make the Boston transit system more secure. 'I'm really glad to have it behind me. I think this is really what should have happened from the start,' said Zack Anderson, one of the students sued by the MBTA."

Time To Discuss Drug Prohibition? 1367

gplus writes "December 5th was the 75th anniversary of the end of alcohol prohibition in the US. The Wall Street Journal has an op-ed which argues that now may be the time to discuss our war on drugs and the drug prohibition currently in place. The article argues that the harm caused by the banned substance must be balanced against the harms caused by the prohibition. As to why Americans in 1933 finally voted to end prohibition, while we barely even discuss it: 'Most Americans in 1933 could recall a time before prohibition, which tempered their fears. But few Americans now can recall the decades when the illicit drugs of today were sold and consumed legally. If they could, a post-prohibition future might prove less alarming.'"

Why Use Virtual Memory In Modern Systems? 983

Cyberhwk writes "I have a system with Windows Vista Ultimate (64-bit) installed on it, and it has 4GB of RAM. However when I've been watching system performance, my system seems to divide the work between the physical RAM and the virtual memory, so I have 2GB of data in the virtual memory and another 2GB in the physical memory. Is there a reason why my system should even be using the virtual memory anymore? I would think the computer would run better if it based everything off of RAM instead of virtual memory. Any thoughts on this matter or could you explain why the system is acting this way?"

US Army Sees Twitter As Possible Terrorist "Operation Tool" 320

Mike writes "A draft US Army intelligence report has identified the popular micro-blogging service Twitter as a potential terrorist tool. A chapter titled 'Potential for Terrorist Use of Twitter' notes that Twitter members reported the July Los Angeles earthquake faster than news outlets and activists at the Republican National Convention in Minneapolis used it to provide information on police movements. 'Twitter is already used by some members to post and/or support extremist ideologies and perspectives,' the report said. The report goes on to say, 'Terrorists could theoretically use Twitter social networking in the US as an operation tool.' Just wait until the Army finds out about chat rooms and email!"

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Technological progress has merely provided us with more efficient means for going backwards. -- Aldous Huxley