Popular Science Magazine Decides to Ban All User Comments

Readers no longer have the ability to comment on Popular Science articles. The magazine announced it has banned all online comments, suggesting that negative comments can be detrimental to the understanding of science. The ban has stirred a controversial debate about the ramifications of online comments, and has prompted discussion about how online comments impact people’s comprehension of and appreciation for science. Continue reading Popular Science Magazine Decides to Ban All User Comments

Netflix Makes Super HD and 3D Options Available to All Users

Netflix is starting to provide all of its subscribers with access to Super HD and 3D content. The company announced that it is no longer obligatory for a subscriber to have Open Connect to access higher bitrate HD streams, as well as 3D titles. Netflix may face challenges convincing ISPs to adapt Open Connect; issues related to peering and local content caching are not completely resolved. Netflix also plans to unveil Ultra HD, with four times the screen resolution of HD, in 2014. Continue reading Netflix Makes Super HD and 3D Options Available to All Users

Intel Looking for Backers to Help Keep Pay TV Service Alive

Intel executives have spoken with Amazon and Samsung in search of a strategic partner willing to back its Web-based pay TV service that it hopes to launch by the end of 2013. If Intel cannot find a backer to help fund and distribute the service, it is possible that the plan will be dissolved. Earlier in the year, Intel executive Erik Huggers disclosed that the company plans to sell an OTT pay service that includes a wide array of broadcast and cable TV networks. Continue reading Intel Looking for Backers to Help Keep Pay TV Service Alive

Google Updates Search Engine to Handle Greater Complexity

Google announced that it is changing its search engine to handle more complex queries. This change has required one of the greatest modifications to the company’s search algorithm since 2000. Google will now focus on comprehending the meanings of searches as well as the relationships of words, as opposed to simply matching keywords. One reason for the change relates to the fact that users are asking longer and more complex questions. Continue reading Google Updates Search Engine to Handle Greater Complexity

BitTorrent Targets Music Scene with P2P Publishing Platform

BitTorrent is teaming with DIY service provider Topspin Media, Web video production company The Collective, emerging music magazine The FADER, and digital distribution specialist Cinedigm to launch its publishing platform, BitTorrent Bundles. The company is hoping that its P2P-based direct publishing platform will appeal to musical artists and other creatives and has convinced performers including Madonna to distribute free content through its software. Continue reading BitTorrent Targets Music Scene with P2P Publishing Platform

Lyrics Videos Establishing Effective New Genre on YouTube

In the past, lyrics videos were largely just the simple creations of music fans. However, the market for lyrics videos has changed dramatically in recent years, and name brand artists are leveraging the technique as a means of greater exposure and profit. According to YouTube, the number of views for these videos, which are typically fast and cheap to produce, has increased seven times since 2011. The top 500 lyrics videos attracted 624 million views this year. Continue reading Lyrics Videos Establishing Effective New Genre on YouTube

Google Products Reflect a Renewed Spirit of Superior Design

Since Larry Page became CEO of Google, the company has been more focused on the elements of design and cohesiveness. Google has been pursuing aesthetic appeal in a way that may allow it to rival Apple, and although the process is gradual, Google products are beginning to show that the company has raised its standards. The change is obvious when examining Google’s mobile apps, its Chromebook Pixel laptop and Google Glass. Continue reading Google Products Reflect a Renewed Spirit of Superior Design

Two Competing Visions for the Future at Tokyo Game Show

At the Tokyo Game Show, two keynotes presented very different visions regarding the future of video games. This year’s theme was “Limitless Evolution,” and Sony executives talked about the evolution of consoles, increased connectivity through a suite of Sony hardware, and the rise of downloadable content. In contrast, the CEO of GungHo Online Entertainment discussed the importance of luck and timing today, in addition to the runaway success of certain free-to-play mobile games. Continue reading Two Competing Visions for the Future at Tokyo Game Show

Microsoft Targets Content Creation Market with Surface Pro 2

Microsoft introduced two new tablets during a launch event on Monday. The Surface 2, starting at $499, is the company’s follow-up to the Surface RT. It features a higher-resoution 1080p ClearType display and Tegra 4 chip. Microsoft is making a play for the content creation market with its $899-$1799 Surface Pro 2, presenting it as a full-fledged mobile workstation. During the demo, Surface GM Panos Panay teamed it with a RED Dragon Carbon Fiber camera to showcase 6K video capabilities. Continue reading Microsoft Targets Content Creation Market with Surface Pro 2

Chinese Investor Envisions Movie Themed Real Estate Project

Wang Jianlin, chairman of Dalian Wanda Group and one of China’s wealthiest investors, announced his plans to build Qingdao Oriental Movie Metropolis. The project, estimated to cost from $4.9 billion to $8.2 billion, would include film studios, resort hotels, an indoor amusement park, movie theaters and a hospital. The metropolis is a sign of China’s efforts to become a world leader in the filmmaking industry. Last year, Dalian Wanda acquired AMC Entertainment for $2.6 billion. Continue reading Chinese Investor Envisions Movie Themed Real Estate Project

Google May Implement Anonymous Identifier to Replace Cookies

Google may change the way that online browsing activity is tracked by developing an anonymous identifier for advertising, or AdID. This identifier would essentially replace third-party cookies to track browsing information, which would then be used for marketing purposes. The identifier would be sent to advertisers and ad networks that agree to certain guidelines, while providing users with greater privacy and control over how they browse the Internet. Continue reading Google May Implement Anonymous Identifier to Replace Cookies

Microsoft Expands TV Efforts, Sees Xbox One as Media Portal

Microsoft is expanding its TV programming in order to market the Xbox One as a portal for games, music and video content. Microsoft hopes its new console will merge television viewing and video game playing. Additionally, the company is producing a live action “Halo” show that will involve director Steven Spielberg and a concept development team in the Los Angeles area. This show is just one of many ideas currently being developed by Microsoft. Continue reading Microsoft Expands TV Efforts, Sees Xbox One as Media Portal

Court Rules That Facebook “Like” is Constitutionally Protected

The U.S. Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia issued a ruling that utilizing the “Like” feature on Facebook to show support for a political candidate is protected by the Constitution. The ruling is in light of a lawsuit brought by former employees of a sheriff’s office who claim they lost their jobs after supporting their boss’s opponent, which involved a campaign on Facebook. The Virginia Court’s decision reversed an earlier decision from a lower court. Continue reading Court Rules That Facebook “Like” is Constitutionally Protected

Twitter’s Ad Simplicity May Be a Weakness, Despite Revenue

Twitter’s longtime hallmark has been its simplicity, and almost all of the company’s revenue, which is projected to be nearly $600 million this year and $950 million next year, has come from three basic advertising formats. While this simplicity has generated profit, it might put Twitter at a disadvantage, especially in relationship to other social sites such as Facebook that collect more information about individual users in order to sell advertising. Continue reading Twitter’s Ad Simplicity May Be a Weakness, Despite Revenue

Replacing Passwords: Innovative Forms of Security Emerging

Technology companies have realized that passwords are not always the most convenient form of security and are seeking alternatives. The new iPhone, for example, features fingerprint scanning while Microsoft’s Windows 8.1 operating system is optimized for fingerprint-based biometrics. Passwords are often long and complicated and difficult to remember. However, new security innovations are emerging that could lead to people relying less on passwords. Continue reading Replacing Passwords: Innovative Forms of Security Emerging

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