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General News News (1296)

There is Still Time to Enter ECS USA's "Design Your Own LIVA" Competition!

Category: General News
Posted: September 17, 2014 10:12PM
Author: bp9801

If you are looking for a way to showcase your creative side and maybe win a prize along the way, ECS USA is still accepting entries for the "Design Your Own LIVA" competition. It runs until the end of September, so you have just a little under two weeks remaining to get your entry in. Participants must design artwork for the ECS LIVA Mini PC, with entries showcasing how it will look from a variety of angles (front and back side view, a left and right side view, a 45 degree view, and a 3D view, plus the best angle that shows off the art).

All entries for the opening round must be in by September 30, and then after that the top ten with the most "likes" on Facebook move onto the second round. That round consists of actually putting your artwork onto a white ECS LIVA, and then snapping pictures of it to send off to ECS by October 31. Once those are in, ECS judges will choose the winners by November 7. The grand prize winner receives $1,000, second place gets $500, and third place $300, with the remaining seven getting some nice consolation prizes.

Time is running out to get your entries in to ECS! Don't delay, as this is a perfect opportunity to highlight your artistic side!

Source: Press Release



IBM to Offer Watson Analytics to Businesses

Category: General News
Posted: September 16, 2014 03:43PM
Author: Nick Harezga

The Watson supercomputer from IBM has been used to challenge some of the smartest humans in Jeopardy and has been envisioned to solve significant problems such as cancer. IBM has now announced Watson Analytics, a program that has been in beta testing for the past nine months under the codename Neo, that will provide "powerful analytics for everyone." Beta testers will be able to get access within 30 days with freemium and premium packages available later this year. Senior VP of the Information and Analytics Group Bob Picciano described the program saying, "Watson Analytics is designed to help all business people – from sales reps on the road to company CEOs – see patterns, pursue ideas and improve all types of decisions."

Source: PC Magazine



NVIDIA GAME24 is Kicking Off Soon

Category: General News
Posted: September 16, 2014 02:23PM
Author: Brentt Moore

NVIDIA GAME24, a 24 hour event that is centered on celebrating PC gamers, is kicking off in just two days. The event itself is a combination of local events held in cities such as Chicago, Indianapolis, London Los Angeles, Mission Viejo, Shanghai, and Stockholm. During GAME24, NVIDIA has promised new product announcements from itself and game publishers, a DOTA 2 Invitational tournament, and the world’s first 24-hour livestreamed modding competition, known as Mod24. NVIDIA has also announced that two world records will be broken at GAME24, but has not revealed any additional details about the records that will be broken.

More information about NVIDIA GAME24 can be found on the event’s website, which will also feature live broadcasts of all the local events that are set to kick off on September 18, 2014 at 6PM PDT.

Source: Press Release


Roku Reaches Sales Milestone

Category: General News
Posted: September 16, 2014 05:23AM
Author: Brentt Moore

Roku has revealed that it has sold 10 million of its own streaming devices since the company was founded. The announcement comes just six months after the company launched the Roku Streaming Stick, an HDMI dongle that competes directly with Google Chromecast. Despite the fierce competition within the streaming media device sector, Roku noted that Roku players are widely used, with the devices averaging 48 hours of streamed content per month. The company also cited a survey conducted by researcher NDP, which reveals that Roku accounted for 37 million hours of video streamed per week, which is much better than Apple TV's 15 million, Chromecast's 12 million, and Amazon Fire TV's 6 million hours.

Source: CNET



DisplayPort Standard Updated to Version 1.3

Category: General News
Posted: September 15, 2014 02:43PM
Author: Nick Harezga

The Video Electronics Standards Association (VESA) has announced that the DisplayPort connection standard has been updated to version 1.3. This new version offers support for both higher resolutions and refresh rates. Version 1.3 "should theoretically be able to drive 4K displays at 120 Hz," with a maximum bandwidth of 32.4 Gb/s. In addition to running a single 4K monitor at 120 Hz, it will also support the ability to "daisy-chain two 4K 60 Hz DisplayPort 1.3-enabled monitors," or to "run a 5K monitor over a single DisplayPort cable." Users that are itching to take advantage of the increased bandwidth will have to wait until sometime next year with no upcoming devices confirmed to use the new standard.

Source: Toms Hardware



Polar Acquired by Google

Category: General News
Posted: September 12, 2014 12:29PM
Author: Brentt Moore

Polar, an online poll company that has previously done polls for media companies such as HBO, TechCrunch, and USA Today, has officially been acquired by Google. The service will soon be integrated into Google Plus, allowing Google to focus on the opinions of its users in a new and exciting way. Due to the acquisition, Polar founder, Luke Wroblewski, as well as the team of engineers and designers that make up Polar, will join Google shortly. Wroblewski is known for developing websites and applications that focus primarily on mobile design, making him a valuable addition to the Google Plus team.

Terms of the acquisition were not released by either Google or Polar.



Google Ventures Into Quantum Computing

Category: General News
Posted: September 3, 2014 04:31PM
Author: Nick Harezga

Google has announced a partnership with the University of California Santa Barbara with the goal of building "new quantum information processors." Google's Quantum Artificial Intelligence team will be working with UCSB researchers led by physicist John Martinis, who recently won the London Prize for work in the field. The Google team is currently "studying the application of quantum optimization to difficult problems in Artificial Intelligence." Google director of engineering Hartmut Neven described the partnership saying, "With an integrated hardware group the Quantum AI team will now be able to implement and test new designs for quantum optimization and inference processors based on recent theoretical insights as well as our learnings from the D-Wave quantum annealing architecture." Google hopes to develop an advanced artificial intelligence system that will be capable of solving advanced problems and analyzing complex patterns.

Source: PC Magazine



CES Founder Dead at 92

Category: General News
Posted: September 3, 2014 04:09PM
Author: Nick Harezga

It was recently revealed that the founder of the Consumer Electronics Show, Jack Wayman, died over the weekend at the age of 92 from natural causes. The first CES was organized by Wayman in 1967 when he was part of the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) and featured 100 exhibitors and 17,000 attendees. The event has since grown to 3,600 exhibitors and 160,000 attendees. Wayman was also involved in the Sony-Betamax case which "paved the way for the introduction of breakthrough technologies," was elected to the Consumer Electronics Hall of Fame, and received the Electronics Industries Association Distinguished Service Medal. CEA President and CEO Gary Shapiro said, "Jack’s contributions to our association and our industry are numerous and momentous. We stand on his shoulders. From leading the creation of the association that eventually became CEA to founding the International CES to leading the fight for critical legislative and public policy victories that helped drive industry growth, Jack truly was one of the fathers of the contemporary CE industry."

Source: Press Release



ECS USA Launches the "Design Your Own LIVA" Competition

Category: General News
Posted: September 2, 2014 07:53PM
Author: bp9801

Another contest is going down, as ECS USA is launching a "Design Your Own LIVA" competition running from now until the end of September. Participants have to take the ECS LIVA system and design their own artwork that will fit on it. The LIVA is a Mini PC with 118x70x55mm dimensions, so it's incredibly small and compact, yet surprisingly powerful thanks to its Intel Bay Trail-M CPU. It is a small area you'll be working with, but it just means an endless amount of possibilities for what you can put on it. All entries have to show a front and back side view, a left and right side view, a 45 degree view, and a 3D view, along with whichever view gives the best look at your artwork.

Once your entries are submitted to ECS by September 30, the top ten with the most "likes" on Facebook move onto the next round, where you turn your artwork into reality. The top ten are given a white LIVA case to put their artwork on, and must take photos of that to send off to ECS by October 31. At that point ECS judges will look everything over, and select a winner no later than November 7. Grand prize winner receives $1,000, second place gets $500, and third place $300, with the remaining seven getting some nice parting gifts.

If you want to get your creative juices flowing and have a chance to win that $1,000, head on over to the ECS USA Facebook page to get started. This contest is only open for residents in the US and Canada, so please take that into consideration. Remember to get your entries in by September 30, and good luck to all participants!

Source: Press Release



LG Announces OLED TV With 4K Resolution

Category: General News
Posted: August 25, 2014 04:51PM
Author: Nick Harezga

LG has announced a pair of OLED televisions that feature an ultra high definition 4K resolution. There will be a 77-inch model and a 65-inch model, with the 77-inch expected to have a price of $11,000 based on its Korean price. As with any new high-end technology, early adopters will be hit with a high price tag, but the high resolution and superior picture quality could be worth it for people with that kind of disposable income.

Source: Toms Guide



Hacker Group 'Lizard Squad' Issued a Bomb Threat in the Midst of DDoS Attacks Against Several Gaming Services

Category: General News
Posted: August 24, 2014 09:40PM
Author: ClayMeow

If you tried to play some games this Sunday, you may have encountered some service issues. A hacker group posting under the Twitter handle "Lizard Squad" has claimed responsibility for a string of attacks against several online gaming services, including PSN, Battle.net, Sony Online Entertainment (SOE) titles, League of Legends, Path of Exile, and most recently Xbox Live. If that wasn't bad enough, Lizard Squad took it even further, calling in a bomb threat for an American Airlines flight that SOE president John Smedley had been on, causing it divert to Phoenix. Unsurprisingly, that action got the attention of the FBI as a matter of national security.

While Lizard Squad is most definitely behind the bomb threat, a Twitter user by the name of FamedGod is claiming that he's responsible for the DDoS attack on PSN; that "LizardSquad couldn't hurt a fly." As of now, it does not seem any personal information has been compromised at any of these sites or services.

Source: Shacknews and PC Gamer and PS Blog and Huffington Post



Google Acquires Gecko

Category: General News
Posted: August 22, 2014 01:07PM
Author: Brentt Moore

Google has confirmed that it has acquired Gecko, a startup located in Los Gatos, California, that helps design products for clients including Dell, Hewlett Packard, Herman Miller, and even Fitbit. Gecko, which specializes in the art of product design, will join Google's X lab, which takes on the challenge of developing and maintaining innovative technology such as Google Glass and driverless automobiles. Jacques Gagne, Gecko’s president and owner, stated that "We are very excited and honored to join Google(x) and work on a variety of cutting edge projects."

No terms surrounding the acquisition were disclosed by either Gecko or Google.

Source: Bloomberg and Gecko



Twitter Places First for Company Culture and Values

Category: General News
Posted: August 22, 2014 10:39AM
Author: Brentt Moore

Glassdoor, the world's most transparent career community that allows people find jobs and companies to recruit top talent, has just released its latest ranking for company culture and values. The list, titled as "Top 25 Companies for Culture and Values," places Twitter at the top of its rankings, ahead of other companies like Google, Facebook, and Apple. Twitter employees helped take the company to the top of Glassdoor's list by complimenting overall teamwork, rooftop meetings, friendliness between employees, and open dialog with executives. According to Glassdoor, company culture is actually one of the top five items that potential employees look at when seeking a new job, making Twitter’s latest ranking all the more important.

Source: CNET



UPS Store Suffers Computer Breach

Category: General News
Posted: August 21, 2014 10:26AM
Author: Brentt Moore

UPS has revealed that computer systems located at UPS Store retail outlets have suffered a breach, which may have resulted in the exposure of names, postal and e-mail addresses, and payment-card data. Malware was the cause of the computer breach, as it was found at 51 UPS Store locations spanning 24 states. Although it is not currently known just how many customers may have been affected by the computer breach, the company has narrowed down the risk of information loss to UPS Store customers who used a credit or debit card at affected locations from January 20, 2014, through August 11, 2014. 

Chelsea Lee, a UPS Store spokeswoman, revealed that one year of identity protection and credit monitoring programs are being offered at no charge to customers who may have been affected.

Source: Bloomberg


ECS Hosting Press Event in Silicon Valley

Category: General News
Posted: August 20, 2014 03:30PM
Author: Nick Harezga

ECS is currently holding a media event at the Aloft Hotel Silicon Valley to showcase its newest product offerings to "top North American media partners and local customers in California." The event is titled LIVE, LIVA, LEAD, L337 and references several ECS product lines. Among the devices being shown are the previously announced 64GB LIVA mini PC in black and white, which will be released sometime this month. ECS will also show a pair of motherboards, the Z97I-DRONE of the L337 Gaming line and the Z97-PK. The company is also planning the reveal the details of the Design Your Own LIVA competition that will start next month and award the winner a prize of $1000.

Source: Press Release



United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission Targeted by Hackers

Category: General News
Posted: August 19, 2014 06:00AM
Author: Brentt Moore

According to a new report filed by the United States Government Accountability Office, attempts to hack computers in the United States have gradually increased over the years, with government computer security violations up 35 percent from 2010 to 2013. It was also noted within the report that the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission, which regulates commercial nuclear power plants and other uses of nuclear materials, has been successfully hacked three times over the past three years. The attacks were done by unspecified foreigners and a third unknown individual, and were successful thanks to a malicious email attachment as well as phishing emails. According to David McIntyre, a Nuclear Regulatory Commission spokesman, the computer security team at the commission is able to detect and thwart most hacking attempts.

Source: Nextgov



Chinese Hackers Steal Data from Community Health Systems

Category: General News
Posted: August 18, 2014 12:44PM
Author: Brentt Moore

Community Health Systems is one of the nation’s leading operators of general acute care hospitals in the United States, with a total of 206 hospitals in 29 states. As such, the hospital operator holds and maintains millions of records, and unfortunately has just announced that some of those records have been compromised by a group based in China. According to Community Health Systems, patient names, addresses, birthdates, telephone numbers, and Social Security numbers of 4.5 million people were compromised in an attack that centered itself on attacking systems through highly sophisticated malware. Although the attack occurred in April and June of this year, Community Health Systems failed to realize that the theft had taken place until just last month.

While a computer security company was able to figure out that the attacks were performed by a group located in China, the name of the group has not been disclosed despite federal law enforcement authorities within the United States reportedly being aware of the group’s identity.

Source: PCWorld


Jetpac Acquired by Google

Category: General News
Posted: August 18, 2014 10:38AM
Author: Brentt Moore

Google has officially acquired Jetpac, a company that provides and maintains a mobile application known as City Guides that recommends destinations based off of analyzed Instagram photographs. The technology offered by Jetpac extracts information from photos that are publically available, and is able to provide customized geographic information through its application. Although Google did not mention exactly how it plans to incorporate the technology offered by Jetpac, the search engine giant will more than likely mesh the analytical technology into its current suite services, as the Jetpac team is set to join Google’s Knowledge team shortly. Jetpac noted on its website that it is excited to work on its existing projects with various team members at Google.

Since the Jetpac team will soon join Google, all applications currently available from the company will be taken off of the App Store on September 15, 2014.

Source: CNET



Cooler Master Announces CM FanZone

Category: General News
Posted: August 13, 2014 09:19AM
Author: Brentt Moore

Cooler Master, a leading provider of computer chassis, power supplies, and CPU coolers, has announced its latest improvement to its support system known as CM FanZone. CM FanZone incorporates new and improved ticket and live chat systems, aimed at delivering optimal support to Cooler Master customers. CM FanZone also provides members with some interesting exclusives, such as special deals, private chat boards, tutorials, and news on the latest Cooler Master products.

Available today, the reworked support systems found within CM FanZone truly make receiving quality support from Cooler Master as easy as possible.

Source: Press Release


Sprint Declares Marcelo Claure as New CEO

Category: General News
Posted: August 6, 2014 03:39PM
Author: Brentt Moore

After abandoning its plans to acquire T-Mobile, Sprint has named Marcelo Claure as its new Chief Executive Officer. Claure is the founder and CEO of Brightstar, a subsidiary of SoftBank, which owns Sprint, and joined the Sprint board of directors last January. Claure has seen his fair share of success throughout his career, as Brightstar, a wireless distributor and provider of services to the wireless industry, grew into a global business worth $10.5 billion under his leadership. According to Sprint Chairman Masayoshi Son, “Marcelo is a successful entrepreneur who transformed a start-up into a global telecommunications company.”

Marcelo Claure will replace Dan Hesse, who became the president and CEO of Sprint in 2007 and was with the wireless carrier through a series of acquisitions, as president and CEO of Sprint starting August 11, 2014.

Source: PCWorld



Google Acquires Emu

Category: General News
Posted: August 6, 2014 02:49PM
Author: Brentt Moore

Emu, a mobile text-messaging application with a built-in virtual assistant, has been officially acquired by Google. While terms regarding the acquisition were not revealed by either company, Emu did make it known that the application will soon cease to exist. As of August 25, 2014, Emu will no longer be available for download within the App Store, and its existing users at that time will no longer be able to send, receive, or download messages. The company did offer an apology for this inconvenience, but noted that it is quite excited to begin its journey with Google going forward.

Emu was founded in 2012 and the application has been available on Android devices since late last year and iPhone devices since April of this year.

Source: PCWorld and Emu


Tt eSports Announces Battle Dragon Power Bank

Category: General News
Posted: August 4, 2014 04:58PM
Author: Nick Harezga


The Battle Dragon Edition Power Bank is the latest accessory from the Tt eSports line from Thermaltake. It carries up to 8,800 mAh of charge and can power multiple mobile devices on a single charge. A high efficiency design provides for up to 90% power conversion to provide the fastest charging times. Four LEDs indicate the amount of charge remaining on the device and a pair of USB ports provide for normal charging or fast charging through a 2.1A port. The Battle Dragon Edition Power Bank will retail for $39.99 and is available now.

Source: Press Release




Apple Officially Closes Beats Acquisition Deal

Category: General News
Posted: August 1, 2014 01:42PM
Author: Brentt Moore

Beats, which was cofounded by Jimmy Iovine and Dr. Dre and is comprised of Beats Electronics and Beats Music, has officially been acquired by Apple following the closing of a $3 billion deal. The deal itself was announced earlier this year in May, with the European Union providing final approval earlier this week. Within the deal closing announcement, Apple mentioned that it plans to elevate the experience that music provides listeners and is excited to work with individuals on the Beats team that are so enthusiastic about music. Apple did not disclose just exactly what it plans to do with Beats as a company going forward, however.

Source: CNET



Mitro Acquired by Twitter

Category: General News
Posted: July 31, 2014 06:26PM
Author: Brentt Moore

Mitro, a password storage and security startup that offers an Internet browser extension password manager, has been acquired by Twitter. According to the team at Mitro, the company will transition to Twitter’s location team in New York, where it will focus primarily on geo-related development projects. Although the company has been acquired, Mitro will remain as its own service and will not be integrated directly into Twitter.

Along with the acquisition, Mitro revealed that the server and client code that comprises it password manager is now being made open source. Mitro hopes that by transitioning into a community project, which will receive direct advice and support from the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the password manager will become more sustainable while continuing to grow its user base.

Source: Mitro Labs


Biostar Announces System-On-Chip Solutions

Category: General News
Posted: July 29, 2014 04:42PM
Author: Nick Harezga

Biostar has announced a series of new mini ITX motherboards with CPUs already installed, otherwise known as System on a Chip. The new boards have offerings for both Intel Bay Trail and AMD Kabini architectures with multiple options for each. A budget system will use either an Intel J1800 or AMD E-2100 in combination with a fanless design. A quad core Intel J1900 or AMD E4-5000 is a great choice for an HTPC with full 1080p playback and an HDMI connector. Other applications envisioned by Biostar include digital signage, thin clients, and kiosks.

Source: Press Release



Microsoft Releasing Hardware Development Board

Category: General News
Posted: July 28, 2014 04:02PM
Author: Nick Harezga

Microsoft has announced a partnership with Intel and CircuitCo to help design a low price hardware development board similar in concept to the Raspberry Pi and Arduino. The $300 board will be called Sharks Cove and is powered by a quad core Intel Atom Z3735G, 1GB of RAM, 16GB of flash storage, and a MicroSD slot. The board is more expensive when compared to other products in the marketplace, but Microsoft may be targeting different users with it. The Sharks Cove website states, "The primary target usage of the Sharks Cove board is for development of subsystems for Intel Atom based Tablets and Mobile devices, but this development board can be used for any Windows or Android based system which uses the Atom processor."

Source: Ars Technica



Amazon Announces 3D Printed Products Store

Category: General News
Posted: July 28, 2014 02:50PM
Author: Brentt Moore

Amazon has just launched its own 3D printing store, which features over 200 products for purchase from various creators of 3D printed goods such as Mixee Labs, Sculpteo, and 3DLT. The Amazon 3D Printed Products Store offers a little bit of everything, with jewelry, toys, games, tech-related items, and more all being available for purchase. Some of the items that are offered through the online store can even be customized with text and images, making each item genuinely unique. Customizations made by customers can be previewed within a new Amazon window where they can view a 360-degree image of the product being purchased, allowing for true representation of the 3D-printed product itself.

Source: TechHive



Goodwill Industries May Have Suffered Payment Card Breach

Category: General News
Posted: July 21, 2014 10:13PM
Author: Brentt Moore

Federal authorities, including the United States Secret Service, are investing a possible payment card breach at United States based Goodwill retail stores, according to Goodwill Industries International. Lauren Lawson-Zilai, Goodwill’s director of public relations, noted that the company was notified about the possible breach last Friday. If a breach is discovered following the completion of the ongoing investigation, Goodwill revealed that it will take appropriate and prompt action in remedying the situation. In the meantime, Goodwill wants customers to know that their data is being properly safeguarded and that the security of payment information is its top priority.

Source: PCWorld


Subscription Service Now Available for Kindle

Category: General News
Posted: July 18, 2014 09:16AM
Author: Nick Harezga

Amazon has now confirmed what has been rumored for some time, and previewed earlier this week, a subscription service is now available for the popular Kindle e-Reader. The Kindle Unlimited service will cost $9.99 per month, with a 30 day trial included, and will give users access to more than 600,000 titles including such popular titles as "The Hunger Games" and "Flash Boys." A number of large publishers including HarperCollins and Simon & Schuster are currently absent from the offerings, but Amazon is also including its selection of audiobooks with the service. Kindle Senior VP Russ Grandinetti described the service saying it is, "by far the most cost-effective way to enjoy audiobooks and e-books together."

Source: NY Times



Amazon Testing Ebook Subscription Service

Category: General News
Posted: July 16, 2014 03:50PM
Author: Nick Harezga

Amazon is working on a new service called Kindle Unlimited that will give users unlimited access to ebooks and audiobooks for $9.99 per month. The test pages were pulled down today but listed more than 600,000 titles prior to the takedown. The new service from Amazon would join a market that has limited competition where it could see a great deal of traction due to the popularity of the Kindle. The test pages didn't list any books from the big-5 book publishers, which are currently available on competitors Scribd and Oyster.

Source: Gigaom



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