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Submission + - Start-ups betting on wearable technology (brw.com.au)

Caitlin Fitzsimmons writes: Great round-up of Australian start-ups developing for wearable technology — from sport, fitness and health to fashion. This is the main feature but there are links to 10 separate profiles, many with embedded videos. Do you think they're right to predict that wearables could usher in a post-smartphone future soon rather than later? Did you know so much development was going on in the Australian market? (Many of them have US offices and are selling there too).

Submission + - Microsoft, Hortonworks to link Excel and Hadoop (cio.com.au)

swandives writes: Microsoft is developing a connector that will allow Excel users to download and analyze output from Hadoop, potentially opening the open-source data processing platform to a much wider audience.

Microsoft is working on the connector with Hortonworks, a Yahoo spinoff that offers a Hadoop distribution and commercial support services. The connector was among several Hadoop-related open-source projects that Microsoft and Hortonworks announced at the O'Reilly Strata Data Conference, being held this week in Santa Clara, California. The two companies formed a partnership last year to adapt Hadoop to the Windows ecosystem.


Submission + - Google-Motorola deal could close-source Android: HP CEO (cio.com.au)

swandives writes: WebOS could be an important player in the long run as an open-source mobile OS because Android could become closed source with Google's purchase of Motorola Mobility, Hewlett-Packard CEO Meg Whitman said during a speech at the HP Global Partner conference in Las Vegas.

It may take up to four years for the complete impact of webOS to be felt, Whitman said. HP has said it would release WebOS — originally developed by Palm for phones and tablets — to the open-source community. The company bought Palm in 2010 but late last year announced it will not make devices that use the software.


Submission + - Apple reveals iPhone and iPad production secrets (arnnet.com.au)

swandives writes: Apple normally goes to great lengths to ensure it's production secrets remain just that — secret. But the secretive company has apparenly buckled under public opinion to divulge its production practices in its first ever Supplier Responsibility Progress Report.

The report is designed to allay any public fears that companies such as Apple are in any way responsible for the unrest taking place at the factories owned by its Chinese supplier Foxconn, which culminated in several factory workers committing suicide last year. It is based on the 229 audits Apple carried out in 2011 throughout its supply chain.

The report reiterates Apple’s commitment to “the highest standards for social responsibility” throughout its supply base, one that requires all of its suppliers to provide safe working conditions for its workers and use environmentally responsible manufacturing processes.


Submission + - Decision on world's largest radio telescope immine (computerworld.com.au)

swandives writes: "In February, the site for the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) — the world's largest radio telescope — will be made. The SKA aims to address unanswered questions about the universe such how the first stars and galaxies formed after the Big Bang, how galaxies evolve, the role of magnetism in the cosmos, the nature of gravity, and the search for life beyond Earth. Australia and New Zealand's bid is shortlisted, along with South Africa, to host the global facility. Regardless of the decision, the Commonwealth Scientific Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) will continue with the construction of an associated project, the Australian Square Kilometre Array Pathfinder, a new radio telescope currently being built at the Murchison Radio-astronomy Observatory in the mid-west region of Western Australia. CSIRO SKA director, Dr Brian Boyle, heads up the project in Australia. He sat down with CIO and Computerworld to talk about the Square Kilometre Array and its implications, both in Australia and globally."
Data Storage

Submission + - USB 3.0 to reach smartphones, tablets by year end (cio.com.au)

swandives writes: "USB 3.0 ports are set to reach smartphones and tablets by the end of the year or early 2013, according to the USB standards setting organisation.

Smartphones and tablets will likely get a MicroUSB port based on USB 3.0 technology to fit the small size of the devices, said Rahman Ismail, chief technology officer of the USB Implementers Forum during the Consumer Electronics trade show in Las Vegas.

The ports will enable faster data transfer between mobile devices and host devices such as PCs, some of which already have USB 3.0 ports. The data transfer rates will likely be 100 megabytes per second, or roughly 800 megabits per second (Mbps). Mobile devices currently use the older USB 2.0 technology, which is slower."

Submission + - Nestlé robot handles supply chain headaches (cio.com.au)

swandives writes: Smart robotic technology has helped Nestlé overcome the occupational health and safety issues of manually handing about four million cases of products in its consumer food and beverage, food service and pet food businesses. The robotic layer picking system at Nestlé½Â(TM)s Arndell Park national distribution centre in Sydney’s western suburbs was integrated by Dematic andomprises a four-axis robotic layer that is equipped with dual bellows and a vacuum-gripping head capable of handling packaging types such as cartons, bags and bottled beverages.

Submission + - CSC says SEC investigation extends to Australian b (cio.com.au)

swandives writes: An investigation by the US Securities and Exchange Commission has been expanded to include CSC's business in Australia. "Intentional misconduct" had been discovered in Australia in addition to accounting errors, said Vice President and CFO Mike Mancuso during a conference call for CSC's second-quarter financial results.

Submission + - Adobe Flash vs. HTML5 (cio.com.au)

swandives writes: You know a technology's future doesn't look promising when even the company that manages it has started offering a toolset for the competing approach. This article looks at Adobe's Flash multimedia platform versus HTML5. Is time to send Flash out to pasture? Not necessarily, according to the article, even for the foreseeable future.

Submission + - 2011's Kinect Evokes Memories of 2001's HAL 1

theodp writes: Hal in 2001:' I'm sorry, Dave. I'm afraid I can't do that [open the pod bay doors]'. Kinect in 2011: 'I'm sorry, Dave Jr. I'm afraid I can't do that [tune in the Spice Channel].' A Microsoft patent filing made public this week proposes to restrict access to TV, movies and video games by using a 3D depth camera to estimate viewers' ages based upon the dimensions and proportions of a person's body, such as head width to shoulder width, and torso length to overall height. For adults with short arms or other seemingly childlike proportions, settings can be overriden by someone with an administrator password,

Submission + - Using floppy drives to play music (silent.org.pl)

liamzebedee writes: "Ever wondered what part of a floppy disk drive made those sounds? The sound comes from a magnetic head moved by stepper motor. To make a specific sound, head must be moved with appropriate frequency.
That's exactly what one hacker did in his summer holidays. Using a an ATMega microcontroller to generate the frequencies he made 2 floppy disk drives play Star War's "Imperial March"."


Submission + - Australia celebrates 50 years of 'The Dish' (cio.com.au)

swandives writes: It is rare for a piece of scientific equipment to hold a place in a nation’s heart. But ‘The Dish’ — the CSIRO's Parkes radio telescope — has in its 50 years come to come to mean a lot more to Australians that just a cool piece of technology. The 64-metre diameter parabolic dish opened on 31 October 1961 and is perhaps best known for its role in the 1969 moon landing. And on October 8-9, its doors will open to the public in celebration of its 50th anniversary. ‘The Dish’ is operated by CSIRO Astronomy and Space Science (CASS), which is also developing the Australian SKA Pathfinder (ASKAP) telescope in Western Australia. And it even has its place on the Big Screen, immortalised (if an inanimate object can be so described) in the 2000 movie, The Dish.

Submission + - Top 1% of iOS Developers Make a Third of All Reven (industrygamers.com)

donniebaseball23 writes: The top one percent in America may control most of the wealth, and it would appear that there's a similar disparity in the iOS ecosystem, as the top one percent of iOS game developers earn over a third of the digital revenue, while the top 20 percent are earning approximately 97 percent of all the game revenue made on the Apple App Store, according to a new survey of iOS developers. The survey, set up by Canadian indie developer Owen Goss, found that the bottom 80 percent of iOS developers are splitting a mere 3 percent of all App Store game revenue between one another.

Submission + - SAP pays $20M to settle criminal charges in Oracle (cio.com.au) 1

swandives writes: SAP has agreed to pay just over $US20 million to settle a criminal case brought against its TomorrowNow subsidiary. SAP Chief Financial Officer of Global Customer Operations Mark White pleaded guilty on behalf of his company to charges that employees of TomorrowNow accessed Oracle's customer support portal without authorization and illegally downloaded software and support documents. In a plea agreement struck between SAP's TomorrowNow subsidiary and the U.S. Department of Justice, the company agreed to pay $20,004,800 in fines and submit to three years of corporate probation.

It seems like a lot, but $20 million isn't much when compared to the $1.3 billion in damages a civil jury ordered SAP to pay Oracle last year after arriving at a guilty verdict over related allegations.


Submission + - Benioff talks human rights with EU's Neelie Kroes (cio.com.au)

swandives writes: During the Saleforce.com Dreamforce event in San Francisco, CEO Marc Benioff sat down with former US federal government chief information officer, Vivek Kundra, the vice-president of the European Commission responsible for the Digital Agenda, Neelie Kroes, and Burberry chief executive officer, Angela Ahrendts, to talk about Cloud computing and governance in the digital age.

The four leaders discussed various issues during the course of the wide ranging conversation, including best practice for Cloud computing by governments and the importance of human rights. This is an extract of the conversation between Benioff and Kroes.

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