When the XBox 360 as released long time ago, it was just another console. It was marred by the popularity and prowess of the PS3 and the ingenuity of the Wii.
Wii was the console that popularized the concept of motion gaming going extreme. Soon Sony jumped in by introducing the PlayStation Move, which mimicked the Wii on a superior and proven console.
What Microsoft did was to introduce the Kinect, the controller without boundaries.
Almost immediately following the launch of Kinect, hobbyists and academics from around the world embraced Kinect possibilities in ways that surprised and delighted. And with the launch of a non-commercial software development kit, we saw even more exciting and creative applications in the areas of healthcare, rehab, education and so much more. As we watched these stories unfold, the term “The Kinect Effect” emerged in hallway conversations at Microsoft as a way to describe the amazing and creative ways Kinect was being used.
What began as pure entertainment had taken a new form altogether. See for yourself
Bill Gates once said, “We always overestimate the change that will occur in the next two years, and underestimate the change that will occur in the next 10." Last year was an incredible year for the Kinect Effect, and with so many fantastic ideas made real in just the one year, I can’t wait to look back in nine!
Being an avid gamer and having owned a lot of consoles myself, I can vouch that no console is inferior when it comes to gaming and enjoyment, but I must really commend Microsoft and the guys who got this idea to transform the Kinect into something unexpected.
We all have indulged in piracy of some kind or the other at some point in our lives. And to tell that we haven’t is to make a fool of ourselves.
A nice piece of read regarding this is at http://www.abc.net.au, where the author questions the direction copyright has traversed since inception.
Nowadays, copyright barely resembles what it was originally designed for i.e. to protect both parties: inventors and content creators on the one side and the public on the other. Corporate America and government compliance have written out public interests in many instances.
One of the main reasons we all have anti-piracy slogans embedded in our brains is because the music industry chose to try and protect its existing market and revenue streams at all costs and marginalise and vilify those who didn’t want to conform to the harsh new rules being set.
Google is extremely fast at launching services – unfortunately, some less successful ones get to bite the bullet from time to time. It now is time for another few services to see the white light.
In particular, the following services will soon be gone:
Code Search, which was designed to help people search for open source code all over the web, will be shut down along with the Code Search API on January 15, 2012.
In a few weeks we’ll shut down Google Buzz and the Buzz API, and focus instead on Google+. While people obviously won’t be able to create new posts after that, they will be able to view their existing content on their Google Profile, and download it using Google Takeout.
Jaiku, a product we acquired in 2007 that let users send updates to friends, will shut down on January 15, 2012. We’ll be working to enable users to export their data from Jaiku.
Several years ago, we gave people the ability to interact socially on iGoogle. With our new focus on Google+, we will remove iGoogle’s social features on January 15, 2012. iGoogle itself, and non-social iGoogle applications, will stay as they are.
The University Research Program for Google Search, which provides API access to our search results for a small number of approved academic researchers, will close on January 15, 2012.
Should anyone of you be using one of these services, it is now time to look for an alternative…
There were rumors and reports about a behemoth of memory card in the making. But we never knew who was going to release it. The massive SanDisk 64GB microSDXC memory card. The memory card can hold approximately 30,000 digital photos, more than 2,000 music albums and over 24 hours of 720p HD video footage – so there’s more than enough room!
Interestingly, you can drop the memory card from ten foot high and it would still work and it has a 5 year guarantee, so you know you’ve got a quality and durable product.
The card will be available with Mobillefun UK who would be selling it form the 3rd October for £139.95. Though the card is a bit pricey but the amount of room you will get for your money is unbelievable.
Also, very few phones at present support external memory beyond 32 GB. Nothing much to add here.
Well lo, what do we have here…???? While Mango flavour of the WP7 was set out to be released this Fall (read as post September), Fujitsu has surprised everyone (even us) by announcing to launch a Mango based phone this August.
Non surprisingly, as with Fujitsu, phone will be rugged and waterproof (The legacy continues). The Phone is expected to cost around 30,000-40,000 Yen.
There were once an ancient time when people innovated something, chewed on it for some time, and then invented something new. Gone are those days. Shame…!! With Bluetooth 3.0 Just coming out in mass production, we already have Bluetooth 4.0.
You read it correct gentlemen, the good guys at Atheros (sounds familiar..eh?) have successfully announced the AR6233, the first of its kind chip in the whole world to bring “the first SIP solution to support the new Bluetooth 4.0 standard,”. The SIP (it’s called system in package and should not be read as some important points…!!) houses a 802.11n “with a near-zero impact on the battery life of portable devices.” Alongwith the Bluetooth 4.0 thingy. The best part is that it is very feasible on the x86 architecture and is supposed to be mass produced sometime in the shady future (Read as Q2 2011).
For those who want to go word by word, here is what the Press release from Athero Says:
“Atheros Debuts Industry’s Most Flexible Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0 Solution for Tablets and Portable Consumer Electronic Devices
The new AR6233 offers both 802.11n Wi-Fi® and Bluetooth® 4.0 technologies on a system-in-package (SIP) solution.
San Jose, CA — Atheros Communications, Inc., a global leader in innovative technologies for wireless and wired communications, today unveiled the industry’s highest-performing and most flexible wireless solution for tablets and portable consumer electronic (CE) devices. Extending Atheros’ popular line of combination products for computing and consumer devices, the new AR6233 offers both 802.11n Wi-Fi® and Bluetooth® 4.0 technologies on a system-in-package (SIP) solution — the compact form factor preferred for CE designs.
Wi-Fi and Bluetooth are becoming standard features in more portable consumer devices, including tablets, handheld games and media players. Wi-Fi provides fast network connections for downloading and sharing digital content, while Bluetooth enhances the usability of devices with simple connections to wireless keyboards, mice, headsets and computers.
The AR6233 is built on the Atheros ROCm® architecture, which was designed to meet the stringent performance and power requirements of mobile handsets. As a result, the new solution can offer the highest 1-stream 802.11n performance (up to 85 Mbps of end-user throughput) with a near-zero impact on the battery life of portable devices. The AR6233 is also the first SIP solution to support the new Bluetooth 4.0 standard, which features a low-energy mode to extend Bluetooth connectivity to sensors and other battery-powered devices.
With a skyrocketing number of Wi-Fi devices crowding the 2.4GHz band, more consumers are looking for dual-band products that leverage the 5GHz band for media applications requiring relatively interference-free bandwidth. The AR6233 provides a cost-effective way for manufacturers to add dual-band wireless capabilities, by adding a minimal number of components to their design.
As CE manufacturers launch tablets and other connected devices with unique capabilities and price points, they are using a variety of processors, interfaces and operating systems. Atheros is the only connectivity vendor to support the full range of tablet platforms, enabling customers to streamline their development and procurement processes. With the addition of the AR6233, Atheros’ portfolio now supports architectures that use:
ARM® or x86 processors
SDIO, PCIe and USB interfaces for WLAN, and UART and USB interfaces for Bluetooth
Windows®, Android™ and other Linux® operating systems
The AR6233 provides the best possible Wi-Fi and Bluetooth performance in a variety of form factors. The same solution can be used in larger devices that take advantage of isolation between Wi-Fi and Bluetooth antennas, as well as smaller devices that share a single-antenna for both radios. To minimize interference in both cases, the AR6233 uses Atheros Universal Wireless Cooperation™ technology, which facilitates greater cooperation between the Wi-Fi and Bluetooth radios.
The AR6233 is now sampling, and is expected to be in volume production in Q2, 2011.”
When it comes to China, developers tend to have two opinions: group A says that this place is the best thing after sliced bread, whereas group B advocates its peers to stay far away from this (EXPLETIVES CENSORED).
According to recent research by Canalys, the Chinese are more interested in apps than anyone else: according to them, 51% of Chinese end users download apps or games. In Western Europe, just 29% of mobile phone users indulge in this activity.
Unfortunately, developers will have to adjust their pricing models:
… social networking users in China were willing to pay for access to their favourite social networking sites. More than half of these respondents were open to paying at least CNY10 (US$1.47) each month for the privilege.social networking users in China were willing to pay for access to their favourite social networking sites. More than half of these respondents were open to paying at least CNY10 (US$1.47) each month for the privilege. …
And will probably also have to deal with J2ME:
Almost half of Nokia’s non-smartphone customers surveyed use their phones to download applications and games.
According to industry sources, the safest bet to make money in China is to sell subscription services.
If anyone of you manages to make money, why not leave us a comment?
AMD hasn’t had the easiest time recently – Intel’s Core processors are faster, and also more power efficient. However, the folks at AMD’s seem to have found a niche of their own: Upgradeability.
All those of you who currently have an AM2+ or AM3 motherboard are in for a major speed boost. AnandTech just uncovered new hexacores from AMD:
Developers will be especially happy about the new Turbo Core feature, as it overclocks the CPU if most of its cores are idle. This can give a nice speed boost on various developer-related things like emulators (which happen to be difficult to paralellize), and makes these chips a more than worthwhile investment if your system is compatible.
P.S. CPU buffs: hit the link above for further information on the Turbo Core technology…
When it comes to tablets, most users think that they are mostly used for entertainment purposes. According to a consulting company called SyBase, this is untrue – the real reason is productivity applications.
The key quote reads as follows:
The role of new tablet devices such as the iPad has been a subject of great debate recently, and while the study shows that entertainment activities such as watching video and playing games are some of the tasks for which consumers might choose an iPad over a smartphone, work-related activities unexpectedly ranked at the top:
With the imminent introduction of the Apple iPad, more than half of smartphone users polled claimed that they are most likely to use a new tablet device like the iPad to conduct work (52.3%).
Surprisingly, the idea of using an iPad or tablet device for work garnered the most interest from smartphone users, while watching movies and television programs, and playing games placed a close second and third respectively (48.2% and 35.4%).
Three-quarters of smartphone users surveyed believe that smartphones and forthcoming devices like the iPad make people more productive at work, with one-third of those feeling that the productivity impact is significant.