New Emergency Patches for Flash Steps Up Calls for Its Demise

To patch two critical zero-day vulnerabilities, Adobe Systems issued an emergency update for its Flash media player. That’s in addition to a previously unknown vulnerability discovered over a week ago in a 400-gigabyte data dump published after hackers rooted the servers of Hacking Team. That bug allowed hackers to covertly install malware on end-user computers. Mozilla now blocks the hacker-susceptible Flash, and several industry leaders are calling for Adobe to pull the plug on the bug-infested media player. Continue reading New Emergency Patches for Flash Steps Up Calls for Its Demise

Microsoft CEO Announces Departures, Corporate Restructuring

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella announced that a series of executive changes would take place at the company, including the departures of former Nokia CEO Stephen Elop, and senior level execs Kiril Tatarinov, Eric Rudder and Mark Penn. Meanwhile, Windows head Terry Myerson will take on added responsibility. As part of the company’s shift from devices and services to productivity and cloud computing, Nadella has appointed a team to oversee the restructuring of Microsoft’s three engineering groups — Windows and Devices, Cloud and Enterprise, and Applications and Services. Continue reading Microsoft CEO Announces Departures, Corporate Restructuring

Microsoft Scheduled to Release its Windows 10 OS on July 29

Microsoft announced yesterday that Windows 10 would launch in 190 countries by the end of July. The upgrade will be free for PC and tablet users running Windows 7 and Windows 8.1, while the $119 Home version and $199 Pro version will be available for all others. (The company has yet to announce when Windows 10 will be available for phones.) New features include the personal assistant Cortana, the new Microsoft Edge browser, integration with Microsoft’s Xbox platform, and the return of the iconic Start Menu. Continue reading Microsoft Scheduled to Release its Windows 10 OS on July 29

SiliconDust Launches Kickstarter to Fund its HDHomeRun DVR

SiliconDust, a startup known for its live TV streaming devices, is now making a DVR that will not tie viewers down to their living room televisions. The HDHomeRun DVR is designed for cord cutters. It plugs into SiliconDust’s streaming devices so that users can watch recorded shows on smart TVs, game consoles, tablets, smartphones and computers. The HDHomeRun DVR can also record from premium channels such as HBO. As of press time, the Kickstarter campaign had raised more than $169,000. Continue reading SiliconDust Launches Kickstarter to Fund its HDHomeRun DVR

GOG Galaxy: New DRM-Free Online Gaming Service Goes Live

After a yearlong wait, game publisher Good Old Games (GOG) has finally launched online gaming platform GOG Galaxy, that much like Steam, updates games automatically. However, with GOG Galaxy the games can be downloaded without DRM restrictions for offline gameplay as well. Galaxy’s online social features and automatic updates are said to be optional and can be turned on and off as desired. A beta version of GOG Galaxy is now available for Mac and Windows users. Continue reading GOG Galaxy: New DRM-Free Online Gaming Service Goes Live

Xbox One Likely to Add DVR Functionality Sometime This Year

In a post yesterday about the death of Windows Media Center, tech journalist and blogger Paul Thurrott cited unnamed sources regarding an update to Xbox One’s live TV functionality that would add television recording. This would allow Xbox One to replace TiVo and other DVRs in many households. Microsoft recently unveiled a tuner that enables the console to accept over-the-air broadcast TV signals. It also offers the options to pause live TV and stream live content to mobile devices via SmartGlass. Continue reading Xbox One Likely to Add DVR Functionality Sometime This Year

Software Subscription Marks a Major Shift for Microsoft Model

As mobile computing grows with the prevalence of smartphones and apps, Microsoft announced that it plans to bring in more money on a consistent basis by selling a subscription to Windows software. Currently, individuals and businesses pay a one-time license fee for Windows. To attract a wider user base, Microsoft re-engineered the software so that it will also work on phones and the company will give away the next version, Windows 10, for free to some users. The model will mark a significant change for Microsoft.  Continue reading Software Subscription Marks a Major Shift for Microsoft Model

Amazon Faces Growing Competition in Lucrative Cloud Business

Amazon is the current leader in the cloud computing business, with its Amazon Web Services division bringing in $1.57 billion in just the first quarter, but Microsoft and Google have their eye on a market that is projected to be worth hundreds of billions of dollars. To maintain its lead, Amazon has rushed to provide other software and analytics services and increased its network of resellers. The real winner, though, will be determined by what company hosts established enterprises. Continue reading Amazon Faces Growing Competition in Lucrative Cloud Business

Maelstrom: BitTorrent’s New Browser Built on P2P Architecture

BitTorrent’s peer-to-peer Web browser endeavor, Maelstrom, is now in beta. Since its limited alpha release back in December of last year, the browser has reportedly seen as many as 3,500 publishers and more than 10,000 developers sign up to work on its platform. The beta release will make the browser available to more people and help gauge interest in a torrent-based service built on a decentralized, P2P architecture. For now, the beta version of Maelstrom is only available for Windows users. Continue reading Maelstrom: BitTorrent’s New Browser Built on P2P Architecture

Popcorn Time Circumvents Apple App Store with iOS Installer

The anonymous developers behind Popcorn Time, one of the fastest growing torrent platforms in the world, have figured out a way to get their new app on iPhones and iPads without going through the Apple App Store. Apple’s security team will not approve apps that facilitate copyright infringement, so the developers have created a new software called iOS Installer for Windows. This software will allow people to download the Popcorn Time app without jailbreaking their phones. Continue reading Popcorn Time Circumvents Apple App Store with iOS Installer

Microsoft Building Spartan Browser, Killing Off the IE Brand

While Microsoft continues to develop its Project Spartan browser for Windows 10, the company is reportedly also readying the end of Internet Explorer. The company is expected to shutter the IE brand, but the browser will exist in some versions of Windows. According to a Microsoft spokesperson, “Project Spartan is Microsoft’s next generation browser, built just for Windows 10. We will continue to make Internet Explorer available with Windows 10 for enterprises and other customers who require legacy browser support.” Continue reading Microsoft Building Spartan Browser, Killing Off the IE Brand

BitTorrent Launches Sync as New Alternative to Cloud Services

BitTorrent has developed a data sharing service called Sync that lets users share and sync files between devices without having to store any information on remote servers. Powered by BitTorrent’s peer-to-peer file-sharing technology, Sync reportedly transmits data between devices 16 times faster than today’s cloud services. Because there is no cloud, there are no user accounts or passwords either. Free and paid versions of Sync are now available on Mac, Windows, iOS, Android and Windows Phone.  Continue reading BitTorrent Launches Sync as New Alternative to Cloud Services

VLC Upgrade Adds In-App Extensions Store, Android TV Support

The VideoLAN Organization has released an upgraded VLC 2.2.0 open source video player with some notable new features. VLC for Linux, Mac and Windows now includes an in-app extensions store, in-app subtitle downloads, resume playback functionality, and support for interactive Blu-ray menus. Resume playback has been available on mobile versions, but is now offered on the desktop. VideoLAN has also added support for Android TV, Windows Phone and Windows RT. VLC 3.0.0 is scheduled for release later this year. Continue reading VLC Upgrade Adds In-App Extensions Store, Android TV Support

Low-Cost Raspberry Pi Computer Enjoys Surprising Popularity

The affordable Raspberry Pi microcomputer — launched three years ago with the modest hope of selling a few thousand units — just passed the five million sales mark. The Raspberry Pi Foundation offers its no-frills Model A Pi for $25 and the Model B for $35. It recently launched the 6x faster Model B Pi 2 with double the memory for only $35. Originally intended as a cost efficient solution for students, the simple microcomputer is now being used to build everything from DIY computers to robotics projects. Continue reading Low-Cost Raspberry Pi Computer Enjoys Surprising Popularity

“Assassin’s Creed Rogue” Game Integrates Eye Tracking Tech

The developers of “Assassin’s Creed” have teamed up with Tobii Tech to provide gamers with the ability to control the camera in the game with their natural eye movement. Tobii Tech calls it an “infinite screen” experience, tracking the user’s gaze at 50 frames per second. Users don’t have to even move their mouse to get the camera to pan or click pause when they look away from the screen. The “Assassin’s Creed Rogue” PC game will be one of the first to include this new technology when it launches early next month. Continue reading “Assassin’s Creed Rogue” Game Integrates Eye Tracking Tech

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